Melissa is the owner of Happyditty Gluten Free Bakery in Kingston, ON. I have been buying all my cakes and baked goods from her since moving to Kingston and she is absolutely awesome. She can accommodate all dietary needs, and even can make Vegan items! I have gotten my Reese’s Birthday Cake which was absolutely a peanut butter DREAM and then at least once or twice a month I’m getting the mixed baked good packs she puts together. The bakery is actually located in her home, and she has two separate kitchens one for her Gluten Free baking located on a separate floor from the rest of the house to ensure no cross contamination.
Be sure to contact Melissa for all your GF needs in Kingston- she is really great at taking whatever you have in mind and making it with her own twist. Everything is always fantastic and delicious and I’m always telling everyone I know to order from her.
For those of us that live and work at home finding a balance can be very tough. It can take years to get into a proper work/home life rhythm and without being very strict on yourself it can take even longer.
I’ve been working at home for coming up on 3 years now, after getting in a car accident of December 2016 and migraines became constant, I was able to work and do my job from home. My day job is in a call centre, so I work in my in home office taking customer calls daily.
Over the years I’ve found things that do and don’t work for me, so I figured I would share them below.
Set up your home office to be as comfortable as possible. If you prefer lots of sunshine, or plants, make sure that your setup is functional and comfy for you.
Ensure everyone in your household respects your work hours. While my schedule is set for me, and I have bosses to answer to throughout the day, you may not. If your self employed then you must set out specific work hours, and let everyone know when you will be unavailable.
MEAL PREP! I still live off meal prepping even working at home. It’s not like you can run out and grab some lunch so make sure your fridge is stocked with healthy, easy to grab snacks and meals. I’m a snacker so I just make sure to have lots of fruits and veggies, crackers, cheese, etc type of snacks on hand.
Don’t forget to shower every day. It can be hard to feel like you “have” to as its not like you’re out sweating or doing a physically taxing job.
Don’t let others interrupt you when you’re working. I have a hard time staying on task, my ability to focus has deteriorated a lot since my car accident and it becomes very stressful and overwhelming for me if my mind gets away by a distraction.
Don’t sleep in, or have any reason to be late. It’s literally the worst thing if you work at home and are late for work. Set alarms, write start times down, just don’t be late!
Don’t drink too much caffeine. I’m the worst for this as I have a tendency to overdo it, but I’m trying. I’ve purchased half-caf coffees to try and consciously cut back.
I hope these tips were helpful to you, and that you can make your work from home job the best it can be. Those of us that can work from home are extremely lucky to do so, and its important that we take care of ourselves and our time.
Well. Here we are, exactly ONE WEEK away from bringing home our new puppy from Ottawa! We’re getting a Mini Dapple Dachshund and we have decided on the name Rei (Portuguese for King) for our little man.
It’s been nearly a decade since I had a puppy last (Rex will be ten in April!) and so while preparing for our puppy, I realized creating a list of all the things to remember and purchase before the puppy arrives is important. This was a great refresher for me also, and really helped me to feel 100% ready for next week.
If you’re a first time dog owner, it is a good idea to get some books on the breed of dog you’re getting. Ask your vet for suggestions, or even local animal trainers may have suggestions for good books. Researching the ins and outs of the breed you are going to be living with is really crucial. Every breed has different temperisms and mannerisms and its important to become comfortable with them ahead of time.
Crate training!! It is so important to buy a crate for your puppy. With Rex, I crate trained him until he could be trusted and now he never goes in his kennel ever. He would sleep in his crate as a puppy and also would go in when I would leave the house. It became a safe place for him and I do feel it helped him become a better dog. Amazon has a great selection of dog crates of all shapes and sizes.
Research local dog trainers. It’s important to take your puppy to at least a handful of training sessions, because you are learning too. I know it seems like a lot of money, but often there are coupons for Petsmart and even maybe in local papers or check Facebook marketplace. Training sessions will be helpful for both yourself AND your puppy learn.
Decide ahead of time who your vet will be. Even if that is your current vet its best to let them know and get quotes for things like shots and fixing surgery. The sooner you have that idea the sooner you can mentally work it into your puppy budget in order to make your purchases in order of importance. Often vets will offer free puppy packages, or coupons for a local pet store. Be sure to ask what they have available for freebies!
Be ready to open your heart up. I am literally bursting every day waiting to be with our puppy. Dogs and I have always had a special bond, and I truly find dogs the most loving creatures on the planet. I’ve been searching and attempting to get a second dog for quite a few years. This situation just literally fell into our laps and we could not say no. To say we are excited is an understatement- but we’re very ready to love our little Rei!
Lately I have been attending a ton more family events. My boyfriends family gets together very often, and there has been many times that Church has been involved, or a nice meal. I have had to find ways to manage frequent body temperature changes, as well as fitting the bill for presentableness.
After getting a President’s Choice Mastercard earlier this year, I have been optimizing ways to collect points. Joe Fresh has always been in my budget, but sizing tends to be an issue so its always been hit or miss. Recently though, I’ve ben hitting the mark with Joe Fresh purchases. This dress is so great I also got it in black, but it is absolutely adorable.
There is a little button closure at the back, and the cinched waist is very cute. I have since gotten a beige belt that goes with it from my mom to borrow for this outfit and it completes it.
This dress was on sale for $14.99 and I had 10% off from my first order. I also got free shipping from being a PC Insider, and plenty of bonus points for my PC Optimum. I also maximized the points earned by using my PC Mastercard.
This dress is such a soft material, and these tights I got in store at Joe Fresh for only $2.97 on clearance. They even have proper foot holes so you won’t wear them out too early by moving the feet spots around. The soft, loose fit combined with the pattern and pockets makes it a total win for me, and so now I have two.
Its also extremely modest which is something I have always felt cautious of. I have never been much of a revealing dresser, more modest overall. The length of this dress also adds to how comfortable it is.
Since you have all been so excited and happy about the Amazon finds I’ve been posting & blogging on- I figured I’d compile another list of some current deals that will help save money for Thanksgiving, as well as just some of my recent favourite purchases. Enjoy!
And don’t forget to sign up for Amazon Prime for free 2 day shipping:
Club House turkey gravy – $1.47 and 50 cent off coupon! Lowest price I’ve seen, even cheaper with Subscribe & Save
Everyone knows how seriously I take my sleep. Dealing with Chronic Migraines and auto-immune diseases means sleep is a crucial part of my day to day maintenance for optimal health.
If you’ve been following my instagram you will have seen my various stories, and posts where I’ve been talking about my experience this past month with my Serenity Queen Mattress that I received from Alea Sleep.
I have been needing a new mattress for quite a while now, and when my boyfriend and I decided to move in together it made sense to get a new mattress so we start fresh. After researching a lot I came to the decision to get our new mattress from Alea Sleep. Let me tell you just a few reasons why:
They are Canadian! From the design, creation, and production it is all done in Toronto, ON — supporting local is something I am extremely involved in. If I can support locally I absolutely chose to do so, every single time. Not only that, but it means much quicker shipping. I kid you not, 3 business days and it was at my front door.
Organic (hello!!) mattress. Need I say more? You all know me by now, and I am the Organic Nerd that tries to find every way to keep my life as pure, organic based, and eco-friendly as I possibly can. Seeing as how we spend so many hours sleeping, having an Organic mattress to sleep on is that much better for your body. Not as many chemicals or toxins to fight off while your body is resting. They are actually 100% Certified GOTS Organic!
They actually donate mattresses to local community events, as well as those who are in need. 1 out of every 10 mattresses is donated to a cause that is close to Alea Sleep. Not many small businesses are able to give back so this shows so much community involvement from a smaller company.
101 sleep night trial to test it out. If you aren’t satisfied after 101 nights, simply return it for your full money back.
Just a few of the reasons why I am so in love with this company and the mattress. I have to say I have always been an incredibly light sleeper. This mattress is really good because of the memory foam, so I don’t feel my significant other moving out of the bed, which in turn is really allowing me to have some really deep sleeps. This is a huge chance from before when literally the wind blowing would wake me up.
The setup was very simple and easy as you can see in the video. They are 10.5′ thick, the box is heavy enough that two of us had to lift it, but it was so simple. It took no more than 10 minutes to be fully ready to use. We tried a few nights with no box spring, but for us the box spring offered more support which is what we were needing in the end. Alea does sell a box spring and a matching frame also if you are needing the full set up!
Overall I (but really I mean we!) are beyond happy with this bed. It fits all our needs and is definitely improving our sleep noticeably. I am optimistic it will continue to provide us with the back support we need all the while staying extremely comfortable!
**This blog post is in collaboration with Alea Sleep– while the item(s) may have been provided to me as compensation, all opinions, photos, videos, etc belong to me**
In honour of my 29th birthday last Thursday, we checked out Fruition Berry Farm, located just off the 401 & hwy 15 in Kington, ON.
A great place to take your family, spouse, or even take your friends. The farm is quite large, with lots of picking to be done. At $11 per large container, that’s quite the steal for local, fresh, in season strawberries. There is also a $1 charge if you need a basket. I got a really awesome travel tripod for my birthday from my boyfriend (he’s always supporting the blogging dream I have) we were finally able to get my first official YouTube Vlog completed.
They take debit and cash, there is also a small barbecue food stand thats serving Hot dogs, burgers, etc as well as drinks. However, there are no Gluten Free options so be sure to eat ahead of time or bring some snacks (try not to snack on the berries even though I’m guilty of it a couple times haha) and definitely stay hydrated. It was about 30 degrees with a very extreme humidity level that day so it wound up being a pretty quick trip but overall it was very fun and great to get outside exploring. Since then I have made a delicious Strawberry Vanilla cake and it was amazing.
So, with all that being said, here is my very first official Youtube Vlog! I hope you enjoy, please hit the subscribe button and leave your comments, suggestions, feedbacks, etc! I’m definitely doing a lot more vlogging this summer so stay tuned.
Birth Control. We all need it, am I right? As I inch closer to 30 I have realized hormonal birth control is absolutely not for me. I already struggle with imbalanced hormones, so continuing my journey of keeping my body as organic as it can be is always on the forefront.
If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you know that almost 2 years ago I stopped hormonal birth control entirely. I switched to using the Caya Diaphraghm (female condom) and it has helped tremendously. If you’re interested in knowing more about it, checkout my Vlog HERE I have loved using Caya thus far and wouldn’t change its effectiveness at all. They last a few years at a time, and are really easy to use.
Further to these two methods I also ensure to use Organically based condoms. Sustain is my favourite brand, and they can be purchased from Amazon. They use all organic ingredients, which has a much lower risk of affecting your lady bits. I’ve always used Organic feminine products to ensure I don’t have any negative side effects from conventional feminine products, and condoms are most certainly included in that.
I’m in need of a savior, but I’m not asking for favors My whole life, I’ve felt like a burden I think too much, and I hate it
-Silence; Marshmallow ft Khalid
It has been a really long time since I’ve had the guts to write a blog so personal.
As you all know, I recently moved from Whitby to Kingston which was a really big change. I didn’t think I had it in me, even with so much support. Mentally it was hard to wrap my mind around even though I knew Kingston was the better spot for me to settle down and grow old in, it was still a little bit foreign. I grew up here, and all my family is here – but in most ways my LIFE is in Whitby. Toronto is also home to me. It’s a strange feeling that I’m constantly going back and forth between which feels like home. I guess they are both home, for different reasons.
So there was a lot of reasons I left Whitby, but a big one was the fact I was in dire need to get back to my roots and dig deep in finding “The Old Erin”. These past 5 years have been nothing short of traumatic, and in turn I have had some incredible changes and emotions. Mental health really took a forefront in my life in these last 5 years and I was under a constant cloud of self hate, anger and depression.
First my dad got Cancer- that was incredibly stressful and really hard to wrap my mind around. I’ve written blogs about that before so I won’t go into too much detail but the struggles of going through that brought up uncontrollable anxiety and panic attacks. It was extremely tough on me personally, I had zero coping mechanisms. Everyone deals with it differently and for me it was really hard to manage. Even now, it is a difficult topic I have trouble vocalizing as it just brings me back to a dark place. If I talk about it I choke up, because it was just such a dark and uncertain time. What is even more ironic is we are coming up on the 5 year mark in 2019 which is considered Cancer Free. Its a big hurdle to overcome and while I am the most proud of my dad, I am also proud of myself for not letting that situation bury me over the years.
In the last two months since moving to Kingston I have really had to learn to love myself again. After being in an incredibly toxic relationship over the course of three years, I was drained of any amount of self love. Toxic relationships truly change you, in the worst ways. I am so incredibly thankful to my good friends who stuck with me even when I wouldn’t leave because I was too stubborn. They loved me and hugged me while I cried and never left my side or did not have my back for one second. I hope and pray anyone else going through a toxic situation has friends to lean on. I would not be alive if it weren’t for those friends today –that is for certain.
I spent years loving someone who did not know how to give respect or love. I don’t doubt for a second that this person did not love me, I just think he was never taught about love and respect. No matter how much I was open about my feelings of rejection and hurt, he was unwilling to look in the mirror and make changes. I was blamed for every problem and told it was my anxiety, or my lack of self confidence. Even though I didn’t see it then, it was the constant criticism that causing my anxiety and self hate. At some point I got lost in the atmosphere and just fell apart. I believed the horrible things I was told about myself, and I punished myself for being that way. I was too skinny, I was too pale, I didn’t eat enough, I wasn’t fit enough. I couldn’t cook food right, nor could I dress in a way that was appreciated. There was absolutely no acceptance of who I was as a person and instead of leaving the toxic relationship I stayed. Anyone who has experienced this I think can understand the feeling of truly loving someone with every piece of yourself and wishing they could love you the same. I would have done anything for this person, and wished every day I would be accepted, loved, and embraced for who I was. I knew if I could just be accepted and loved the relationship would improve. What I didn’t know, was that he was incapable of giving me what I needed. So instead I stayed, and continued to fall deeper and deeper into hating myself. I really felt if I couldn’t get him to love me, that I wasn’t worthy period. I was told so often about what I lacked, what I couldn’t do, how I couldn’t do it, and why I wasn’t doing it right. This went on for 2+ years of constant back and forth. With each day that passed I just wanted to be loved, and with each hurtful thing said to me it just cut me deeper and made me hate myself more. Every day I could call my girlfriends, crying, and wondering why he couldn’t see me the way they did and everyone else around me. Most days, I felt like I would rather die than be alone. As dramatic as that sounds- unless you have been in a relationship where your mind is so controlled by the other person, it is all you think. I didn’t think I could live or breathe without him.
Eventually, at some point things really fell apart and I guess that is the silver lining to this (Cue “Dancing With our Hands Tied- Taylor Swift;; this song is the literal explanation of the entire relationship). I don’t remember the exact moment, or event that occurred. I just remember things starting to not add up, trust issues set in (which surprisingly we never had trust issues, up until the end), and we both just knew it was over. My friend Rachel was there to pick me right up and help me through that incredibly dark time. She was able to keep me laughing, busy, and moving forward. I had to push on, I had survived an extremely traumatic situation, and made it out. The hard part had just begun though. On one hand, the immediate feeling of relief washed over me. To finally breathe, and not worry about being criticized for every single thing I did or did not do was overwhelming. It was a freedom I had never felt before in my whole life. There is nothing worse than hating yourself (from the years of hearing and believing it) and then being left alone by that person. The breakup was mutual, don’t get me wrong. But I still had feelings of emptiness and like I failed because he wasn’t there.
Over the next 6 months I not only managed to move to a new city, but completely start my life over. I have worked so hard through therapy and practise to love myself again. A lot of self care was practised, and a lot of doing exactly what felt good to me was what helped me get past all the negativity that was engrained in my brain. At no point will I ever date a person who shows signs of being abusive and toxic. I can spot the red flags very easily now, and the clarity I have is nothing short of a miracle. I am so proud of the progress I made and how I got here. I am proud of the fact this move solidified my three best girlfriends. You know who you are, and I wouldn’t be the confident, beautiful, loving person I am today without you three. My friends build me up, and I don’t feel guilty for accepting compliments from them. At no point should anyone feel guilty for compliments but thats just how my mind has been trained up until this point. Most people aren’t lucky enough to have one good friend and I have been blessed with three of the best girlfriends anyone could ever need. They all bring different perspectives to my life and for each I am beyond thankful and grateful for. With the help of them, I have been able to build myself back up, and move to a new city. Friendships are incredibly important when rebuilding your self love. You need to have people who see you the way you are and know when you need some confidence.
As I dip my toes back in the dating world it’s an interesting thing. I am almost 29, at the age where I certainly know I want to get married and have a child. Finding someone who wants the same things, and is a good person is the most difficult task. Learning to trust again is a challenge, I don’t really trust anyone is good anymore and I have all these fears of letting someone in, only to have them wind up putting me through the ringer again. I think I am certainly OK with winding up alone, it is not the end of the world. I just feel that the current state of Dating in 2019 is a hot mess, in which no one is clear or kind. It’s been a struggle, but I’m happy to say I can laugh now. I can laugh when a guy wants to say something hateful to me. I’m better than that. At no point have I ever been the person to put someone else down (Probably because that is what I am used to dealing with.), but I find it’s very common. It means a lot of duds, and ghosting. It’s hard to not overthink every single thing going on, do you talk too much or too little? It’s getting easier to just be myself though and the person can either take it and embrace it, or leave. Either is fine, I’m just finally at the point where I am who I am and it’s not changing. I love myself, I am an incredibly good and loyal friend. I will never intentionally hurt someone nor do them wrong. The cool thing is though, when you love yourself, you don’t look for acceptance elsewhere. I am the only person who needs to love me and I am finally there again. Months of therapy, lots of books, and tons of writing. So many of my emotions I was able to write and journal about. Just like this blog here is something I’ve been putting off for a while because it’s just nerve-racking. But it is incredibly freeing and empowering to be able to finally speak out on these past few months and what I’ve been going through. I’m finally able to LOVE my blog, and be proud of the work I do.
I was able to overcome some absolutely wild hurdles, and come out on the other side better than ever. I am thriving, I have great friends, and a family who loves me. 2019 is not off to a bad start..
I have been a Knixwear Ambassador for about 6 months now and I really love this company. Not only are they Canadian, but they are a completely Body Positive company. They use models of all shapes, colours, and sizes! They keep it real and are such a beautiful company in my opinion. They celebrate ALL women and empower them with products that are beautiful, comfortable, and functional. Finding all three things in one company is wonderful. Check out the Body Suit linked above – it is a new release, and I am so in love!! Use my codes below for corresponding discounts:
Ongoing active code: glitzandgf10 for $10 off your order.
If you’re having any issue using these codes please email me email@example.com and let me know.