Why upgrading your air conditioner will make you a happier person

by Blogger ‎05-06-2015 09:17 PM - edited ‎05-06-2015 09:18 PM

wills-carrier.jpgI’m one of those people that tend to run hot. Yup, it’s true. I’m that person wearing a tank top in May when the rest of the city is clad in spring jackets. I’m that person who is lobster-red at and dripping in sweat five minutes into a cardio class at the gym while everyone else remains cool and dry. And now that spring has arrived and the sun has decided to pay us a visit once again, I am that person sweltering in an apartment that features fantastic windows; all of which face west. Needless to say, air conditioning and I are friends.


Living Lux: comfort is a worthwhile pursuit

by Blogger ‎05-04-2015 10:01 AM - edited ‎05-04-2015 10:16 AM

tracy-mother-kobo.jpgYou know how they say opposites attract? I’d say that’s definitely the case with me and my husband. He grew up Roman Catholic and has a real chip on his shoulder when it comes to doing things the easy way. He believes a dollar saved is a dollar earned (read: he’s frugal), it’s better to skimp on heat and air conditioning when possible and discomfort is not necessarily a bad thing. I disagree wholeheartedly! I like comfort. Is it so wrong to crave a good Downton Abbey binge-watching session on the lap top in 300 thread count sheets?  I think not. In fact, I think as busy moms, surrounding ourselves in comfort is a worthwhile pursuit.


Shelly's Friday Favourites goes through Disneyland withdrawal

by Blogger ‎05-01-2015 07:28 PM - edited ‎05-01-2015 07:31 PM

dolewhip.jpgIt’s been just over a month since we wound up our latest trip down the West coast to California, and since that time I’ve been pondering the very harsh reality of food cravings. It’s one thing to crave a type of food you have access to, but to crave something you can only eat at a very specific place you only visit occasionally? That’s a tough one. If you’ve ever been to Disneyland, you probably understand exactly what I mean, and there’s even a name for it—Disneyland withdrawal.


Camping goes low tech

by Blogger ‎04-29-2015 01:19 PM - edited ‎04-29-2015 03:23 PM


Many of us work 24/7, thanks to the endless connectivity of our smartphones. Do you want to truly relax one weekend this spring or summer? Try leaving your tech at home! Yes, some research suggests you can maximize your relaxing by unplugging from those endless little tasks like responding to texts and emails as they come in. Wondering how you'll find your campsite, and what you'll do when you get there? I have a whole gadget-free list of ways to spend your unplugged weekend! 


Why upgrading your stove will make you a happier person

by Blogger on ‎04-29-2015 04:13 AM - last edited on ‎04-29-2015 03:13 PM by Editor in Chief


It’s pretty unbelievable how much our favourite appliances have changed over the years … Let’s take a look at the heart of the modern kitchen—the stove, and see how it’s progressed in being the powerhouse appliance that we’ve all come to love!



A brief history of mixers

by Blogger on ‎04-29-2015 01:01 AM - last edited on ‎04-30-2015 09:13 AM by Editor in Chief

stand-mixer.jpgWe rely on, and come into contact with, so many modern conveniences on a daily basis that it is easy to lose sight of the fact that not all that long ago many of those conveniences had not yet been imagined, let alone invented. Take the electric mixer for example. Can you fathom making cookie dough or whipping cream entirely by hand? I certainly can’t. Electric mixers are a staple in almost every kitchen, but have only been around for about 100 years, and surprisingly, their history is much more interesting than you would have thought.


Get Your Sweat On

by Blogger ‎04-28-2015 03:10 PM - edited ‎04-28-2015 03:13 PM

tracy-mother-pic-fitness.jpgI love fitness. Please don’t stop reading! I’m not bragging. I’m just setting you up for the heartbreak and disappointment I felt when I had kids and realized there were zero minutes left in the day to work out. You may have come to the same conclusion. So what’s a mom to do? Get creative … fast.


Take a walk through the history of Kenwood Appliances

by Blogger on ‎04-24-2015 02:56 PM - last edited on ‎04-24-2015 03:02 PM by Editor in Chief

kenw0od.jpgDid you know there are two Kenwood companies? The Kenwood Corporation that sells audio products, and Kenwood Limited, a company that’s been modernizing the kitchen since 1947. Kenneth Maynard Wood of Britain founded Kenwood Limited, and working from his garage, he set out to revolutionize how people perform tasks in their kitchens.


3 Ways to Make Gluten Free Pizza

by Blogger ‎04-24-2015 01:37 PM - edited ‎04-24-2015 01:47 PM

Gluten Free Pizza.jpg


Pizza is one of my favourite foods. It’s perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, as well as after a late night of drinking. I couldn’t imagine having to give it up because of celiac disease or a sensitivity to gluten or wheat. But if this applies to you, have no fear: there are ways to make non-traditional pizza crust so you can continue eating the food you love. 


Teach your kids about cyber-safety

by Blogger on ‎04-20-2015 10:32 PM - last edited on ‎04-27-2015 04:28 PM by Editor in Chief

cyber-safety1.jpgWhen I first hopped online during University I was old enough to handle the Internet in all its glory, and I was mature enough to make decisions about where I would spend time and where I wouldn’t. Despite the fact that our kids have been online since before they can remember, they don’t have that same savvy required to always make the right decision and get themselves out of situations where they have the potential to be hurt.


Camping takes planning: how to prepare for your next family camping trip

by Blogger on ‎04-18-2015 09:29 AM - last edited on ‎04-28-2015 11:04 AM by Editor in Chief

BBY_tent.jpgOver the past few years I’ve become a lot smarter about what to pack for a family camping weekend and what not to pack. It all comes down to planning. Take a look at some of the camping gear I bring along when I’m camping with the family.


CyberLink Unveils New Research on Radically Changing Media Consumption Habits

by Blogger on ‎04-17-2015 11:39 AM - last edited on ‎04-17-2015 12:40 PM by Editor in Chief


As CyberLink prepared to launch the latest version of our best-selling PowerDVD software (PowerDVD 15) we noticed that the way people consume media was changing quite rapidly. Naturally we wanted to better understand the habits of our many tech savvy users so we can anticipate their needs and ensure we are always providing them with the very best software solutions. 


What is Cyber bullying and what can you do about it?

by Blogger on ‎04-17-2015 11:04 AM - last edited on ‎04-27-2015 04:27 PM by Editor in Chief

cyber-bullying.jpgIf you’ve got kids in the school system, odds are you’re hearing a lot about bullying right now. The days when kids entering high school have to worry about getting their heads flushed or shoved into lockers has, for the most part, gone by the wayside because of teachers actively watching for physical bullying and anti-bullying campaigns. But like when you douse out a campfire and there’s a chance of a jumping embers, when you control one type of bullying a new one can crop up. I’m talking about cyber bullying or online harassment, and it’s becoming a serious problem in Canada.


Get around faster with a new ebike or scooter

by Blogger on ‎04-17-2015 10:00 AM - last edited on ‎04-17-2015 12:50 PM by Editor in Chief


Getting around by car may be the easiest form of transportation, but it’s certainly not the most economical… especially when parking and gas is costing you an arm and a leg! Nowadays, there are plenty of options to choose from that will not only save you money and time, but also amp up the vitamin D in your daily commute. Here are a few of my favourite alternative personal transportation methods worth checking out: the electric bicycle, scooter, and unicycle.


Moving Day: tips for a smooth transition when you have small children

by Blogger on ‎04-17-2015 09:05 AM - last edited on ‎04-24-2015 10:33 AM by Editor in Chief

safety 1st diaper tote bag.jpg

Moving is always a drag. Add small kids and/or babies to the mix, and it can be even more challenging. I know, having moved twice in my son's first 3 years of liife. Here are some tips to help make the move run more smoothly with young kids in tow.


How to get out of the house (kind of) fast

by Blogger on ‎04-17-2015 09:00 AM - last edited on ‎04-17-2015 10:10 AM by Editor in Chief

tracy-mother-pic1rev.jpgHow fast do you get out of the house when you have kids? We all know 45 minutes spent at the front door without ever crossing the threshold is not unheard of. I make a habit of getting everything ready hours before we actually have to be anywhere.  It is a feat of incredible magic and coordination to get out the door without screaming your head off, breaking a sweat or a nail or both. Here are a few suggestions that may help.


You’re about to have a baby! Now what?

by Blogger on ‎04-17-2015 09:00 AM - last edited on ‎04-17-2015 10:32 AM by Editor in Chief

tracy-motherLet’s rewind to winter 2008. Me, my beach ball belly and my husband step into a big box baby store full of dreams of tiny yellow onesies. What greets us is aisle upon aisle of plastic, primary-coloured product. Strollers, diapers, breast pumps, soothers, a billion bottles and toys. Within 10 minutes I am drenched in tears, completely overwhelmed and feeling wholly inadequate as a shopper and a soon-to-be mom. Was it the hormones? Of course! But it was also the reality of having way too many options and just not knowing what was needed and what wasn’t. Use my breakdown to your advantage.


Shelly's Friday Favorites does Spring BBQing

by Blogger on ‎04-17-2015 07:20 AM - last edited on ‎04-17-2015 11:09 AM by Blogger





Spring is finally here, and on the West coast we've been blessed with gorgeous weather earlier than usual, so my mind has already turned to BBQ season. I know I'm not the only one out there grilling early this year because I can smell the all too familiar BBQ smell coming from my neighbours as well.


Upgrade your fridge: From Mad Men-era features to today's high tech options

by Blogger on ‎04-15-2015 11:47 AM - last edited on ‎04-15-2015 04:21 PM by Editor in Chief


A refrigerator is one of the biggest big ticket items you'll buy, and for many of us we may only buy a new one once or twice in our lifetimes.  So what features are worth looking at in today's modern fridges?  There's no better way to highlight what's new, than looking at what's now old news when it comes to fridge technology.


Tips to help you go gluten free

by Blogger on ‎04-13-2015 05:20 PM - last edited on ‎04-14-2015 02:54 PM by Editor in Chief

gluten free main image.jpgIt’s nice to see more gluten-free options at restaurants and grocery stores, especially for people who have celiac disease. But people who aren’t celiac are also leading a gluten—or at least a wheat—free lifestyle to lose weight or avoid bloating. I attempted to follow a gluten-free diet to dig deeper into this trend. Read on to find out what I learned:


Shelly's Friday Favourites tries for the perfect penne

by Blogger on ‎04-10-2015 07:29 PM - last edited on ‎04-30-2015 12:10 PM by Editor in Chief

penne-recipeWhen you want pasta for dinner, you usually just reach for a package. But this week was different, because this week I made 3 different types of pasta with the Philips Avance Pasta Maker. Although it didn't look as perfect as it does from the bag, it was the best pasta I've ever had.


Adding a Textured Look to Photos

by Blogger on ‎04-06-2015 04:32 PM - last edited on ‎04-06-2015 05:04 PM by Editor in Chief

sewing-machine.jpgIn CyberLink's PhotoDirector 6, the new Photo Composer tool added an Opacity slider that allows you to add a textured look to your photos and create an artistic flare. Even though there are lots of texture templates online, you can also create one your own. Look for interesting patterns such as laminated countertop, leaves, trees, and even a rug or old paper bag would do...


Wedding gift glassware that they’ll love to use

by Blogger ‎04-03-2015 01:50 PM - edited ‎04-03-2015 01:51 PM

mojito.jpgI don’t know what it is about wedding gift registries, but I’m not a big fan. I absolutely love the process involved with gift giving, so it’s just not as fun for me when I’m told what to buy. Especially when the only items left on the registry are an inexpensive corkscrew and a China set fit for the Duchess of York. That’s why I tend to skip the registry altogether and stick with my standby wedding gift – glassware. There seems to always be a need for glassware, and when you have the right glasses for various types of drinks, your bride and groom are guaranteed to love using them.


Spring is all about rediscovering the outdoors!

by Blogger on ‎04-02-2015 12:31 PM - last edited on ‎04-02-2015 12:58 PM by Editor in Chief

BBYapr3_EA.jpgI don’t know about you, but after being cooped up for an entire winter I was more than ready for the first day of spring. After months inside watching TV or avoiding the cold outside, people are literally spilling out onto sidewalk, parks, and mountainsides to take it all in and enjoy the start of a brand new season.  There are many different things you can choose to do in the great outdoors during the spring. If you need some ideas, I have a few for you.


Renovation Dilemma: If you could only change one thing in your kitchen what would it be?

by Blogger on ‎03-29-2015 11:59 PM - last edited on ‎04-02-2015 10:40 AM by Editor in Chief

BBYapr3_Apps.jpgWhether it’s your fridge, your dishwasher or a small appliance, there is always something you wish you could change about your kitchen. With spring starting, why not change it now?


wedding-gift.jpgI’ve been to my fair share of weddings. Heck, I’ve been in my fair share of weddings, so I know all to well that as much fun as they can be, the can also get a little pricey. The good news is that you don’t have to remortgage your home or sell a kidney to get the happy couple a wedding gift that won’t just be appreciated, but will actually be a welcome addition to their home. Here are some great wedding gift ideas that won’t break the bank.


Shelly's Friday Favourites hits the road for a culinary adventure: second stop, Disneyland

by Blogger on ‎03-20-2015 11:12 AM - last edited on ‎03-20-2015 12:11 PM by Editor in Chief

disneyland.jpgOur road trip continues with a good old-fashioned pit stop at the Happiest Place on Earth. For some people, going to Disneyland means hitting all the shows, parades, and attractions. We like to do that too, but because we have annual passes and go so often, we’ve added to our adventure by becoming hunters for the best dishes and treats in the park. There are a lot of treats to be had, and they’re more delicious than you may think.


mature-couple.jpgWhat’s your favourite gift to give at a wedding? Most people have a standard gift, something like gift cards or a small appliance, that they like to give the happy couple just starting out. But what if the happy couple is a little older, a little wiser, and is getting married for the second time around? If you’re not sure what to get the happy couple who has been together for a long time but is only now tying the knot, here are a few great wedding gifts for the mature couple getting married.



One wheel fun for everyone on the Sologear Self-Balancing Electric Unicycle

by Blogger ‎03-11-2015 12:33 PM - edited ‎03-11-2015 12:34 PM

sologear.jpgIf you happened to be out in Fort Langley this weekend and you were part of the crowds surrounding my son as he wheeled around on the Sologear Self-Balancing Electric Unicycle, you already know how cool it is. I stopped counting after 10 people asked us what it was and where we picked it up, and everywhere he rolled that day, people were drawn to it.


Pre-Wedding Juicing

by Blogger on ‎03-05-2015 09:12 PM - last edited on ‎03-10-2015 11:06 AM by Editor in Chief

Green-Smoothie.jpgWeddings are stressful. The litany of decisions that have to be made leading up to the big day is seemingly endless. What font to use on the invites? What colour dress is the bride going to wear: white, almost white, somewhat white, kinda white, not super white but can pass as white, red? What about catering and decorations? Chocolate cake or vanilla cupcakes? What about flowers? The list goes on. And to add even more stress, whether you’re the bride, the groom, or in the bridal party, you’re going to be photographed more in the span of a few hours than ever before, so you know you’re going to want to look your best. That’s where juicing comes in.


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