My name is Lindsey Oele, I was born and raised in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada. I grew up wanting to do something creative with my life, something a bit outside of the system. In my teenage years I dreamed of fashion design and had a taste for beautiful things.
So a typical night at my house goes something like this: it’s five o’clock and my husband will be home soon and I’m getting hungry and realize that I haven’t pulled any meat out and have nothing planned so in a panic, I throw some frozen ground beef in a pan and settle for another spaghetti and meat sauce night. Am I the only one? Probably not…
I tried freezer meal planning. I did it one time, I found a post with 40 freezer meals in 4 hours. Great! So I bought all the ingredients and had my kitchen and a zillion ziplock bags ready to go at noon on a Sunday and went to town. Guys, I HUSTLED and I was still up till past midnight trying to get all these meals finished and had to get my reluctant husband in to help too, lol. 4 hours, not a chance! So I kinda got myself overwhelmed and gave up on the dream of freezer meals, but I really did enjoy having those meals ready to go for the next 40 days.
So who here has tried Hello Fresh? My neighbour told me about them a while back while she was cutting my hair and I thought, yeah that sounded great. They are a meal delivery service that sends you 3 meals a week. The box includes all of the ingredients and photo directions to make your meals. It is a lifesaver for those nights when my inspiration is drained and Pinterest is just too much. I got a couple flyers in the mail but never got around to ordering a couple of weeks ago.
I signed up for the subscription, Family size, 3 meals a week. After the order went in, I got an email to confirm my meal choices. There were four different meal options which was great. I chose the Peanut Satay Noodle Stir Fry, Cheesy Chicken Enchiladas and Saucy Steak. The website said that if you change meals on your first week to call and confirm, so I did. They were super friendly and helpful on the phone. When I mentioned that I wasn’t choosing the pork chop option because I don’t eat pork, he let me know that he would set an option on my account so that I would for sure not receive any pork meals! So helpful. I was also able to choose the arrival date of my first box.
The box arrived on Monday in an insulated box. It smelled amazing before I even opened it! All of the meals came packaged separately so I was able to put each bag into the fridge until it was time for each meal. The meat was all kept in the bottom of the box on top of the recyclable ice packs.
The first night I made the Peanut Satay Noodle Stir Fry. It was really simple and took under 30 minutes. I enjoyed having everything pre-proportioned with easy to read instructions. I chopped the veggies and mixed the peanut sauce. The outcome was a picture perfect dish with a ton of flavour and something really simple to make that I never would have thought to make on my own.
The next two meals were really good too. My kids loved the enchiladas for sure (it actually made two pans full, not just this one!). My husband was happy with Saucy Steak, the sauce you make for it is really good!
I had a lot of fun with this and my family was happy that our suppers were way more exciting than usual. I am already very much anticipating my box next week and I forgot which meals I chose so it’s going to be a tasty surprise! Hello Fresh has taken a huge burden off my shoulders as I despise having to come up with new dinner ideas that keep my family satisfied. I’m so glad I decided to finally give them a go!
If you are interested in signing up, you can use code LINDSE9 and it will take $40 off your first order! Check them out here.
Let me know what your favourite tricks are for meal planning and if you’ve tried this service!
Hey there, friend. If you’re anything like me, you’re consciously aware of superfoods and healthy living but always seem to have trouble actually incorporating them into your routine. Good intentions and new habits take awhile to forge and I’m always looking for shortcuts and easy to execute ways to fit them into my chaotic life.
I recently found a local product by Level Up Superfoods that works itself into my morning (or late afternoon or evening) coffee cup with ease. It’s a couple extra steps but the results are worth it! I’ve been using the Level Up Superfood Coffee Mix. It comes in four flavours but my fave is easily the dark chocolate, with cinnamon another great option. It’s an organic food product that is rich in MCT oils and antioxidants. It sweetens my coffee but is sugar free. It’s also dairy free and vegan, Keto and Paleo compatible. It comes in a glass jar and sits happily in my coffee cupboard for easy reach.
Here’s how I make it:
First I brew a hot steamy cup of coffee. For best results, it should be blended in, trust me stirring is not the same. I use my Ninja blender single serving cup. So I pour the coffee in there, or sometimes I brew it straight in with my Keurig. Next I scoop in a heaping teaspoonful of the coffee mix and blend for about 10 seconds. Now I just pour into a mug of choice and enjoy the frothy and sweet brew!
While it’s great for coffee, you can use it as well for tea, steamed milk, iced coffees, oatmeal, smoothies, baking or desserts. I think it would be great in a latte!
The best cup of coffee and zero guilt. I actually feel good about drinking my cup (or two) a day. I have yet to try the other two flavours, Chile Mocha and Dirty Chai, but they sounds amazing too!
Find out more about this amazing company and their products by visiting their website here or visiting them on Facebook here.
Hello and Happy Thursday to all! I hope my locals are staying warm and avoiding that -40 temp! I managed to stay warm this morning with a trip to the gym… yes I’m working out and started with a new program. Will share soon!
I wanted to share this phone case set because it’s super awesome and I didn’t even know I needed it! I was using a pretty blah case before but this has so much function, I am just loving it!
So what I’m actually using is one of their phone wallets called the Mayfair Clutch which comes with a built in case and has room for three cards and a removable wristlet strap. The case is actually magnetic so it’s easy to take my phone out and replace it, but I can even use my other, slightly fancier, black marble case that I got in there because it’s magnetic as well! I didn’t know that when I picked it out but when I got them in the mail and started playing around, I loved the magnet feature right away and figured it was worth trying if that one was magnetic also. And it was! Woohoooo!
This wallet is great on it’s own as a wristlet but it also works well in my smaller bags where my full sized wallet may not fit. It holds all the essentials and looks stylish and sleek!
This marble phone case is the perfect solution to phone protection while still looking super cute plus it goes with pretty much everything.
I could not be happier that I upgraded from my old boring case and went ahead and ordered these!
If you are in need of a new case code CAWINTER takes 20% off the pricing at Ideal of Sweden! There are some really cute floral and other prints too!
Like many of you, for years I’ve been concerned with the products I use everyday on my face, hair and body. I’ve compromised often, forgiving the odd damaging ingredient and turning a blind eye to the ingredient list because I knew it wouldn’t be as good a it should be. But deep down, I knew that this wasn’t what I’d be ideally using, and that toxins just aren’t something to ignore.
I remember once about a year ago, I walked into Sephora and asked, “Don’t you have any natural beauty brands?” They do, after all cater to a huge number of women and the demand for safer products has been heard for years. She pointed me to what she informed me was their “natural brand” (she actually used finger quotes) and I felt relieved, until I read the ingredients. It was good, but not perfect.
Now I promise this story isn’t all doom and gloom, in fact a few months ago I discovered a brand called Beautycounter. I heard it a couple times but didn’t look much into it, until a friend finally said, “Hey I’d love you to try this, let me send you some products.” It finally got my attention and I’m so glad it did. Not only does this company ban any ingredient that it can’t completely verify as safe to use, they also are working with government to make a change in the beauty industry by banning ingredients that have no business being in our most intimate daily products! On their site they promote “The Never List” which is a summary of the 1400+ chemicals that are regularly used in beauty products that they refuse to use. They are also very transparent about what they do use and include a glossary on the site for every ingredient they use to explain what it is and what it does. What really sealed the deal for me was a search of their products on the Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep database which tracks beauty products and rates them based on their use of toxic ingredients.
So, my favorite products? I haven’t tried them all but the ones I have gotten into have left me extremely pleased with the performance. The product I’ve now been using the longest is the Repair & Nourish Shampoo and Conditioner. I don’t know about you but the first thing I do with any new hair product is pop the top and check out the smell. This line definitely passed that test! Unlike many natural shampoos, this one lathers up super rich (and yes, without sulfates!). They can be purchased separately or save money by picking up a set including a split end serum.
Beautycounter has some amazing skincare lines that are just as fun and lustworthy as any major skincare brand. My favorite has been the No. 2 Plumping Collection which includes a Facial Mask, Facial Oil and Facial Mist which are available as a set or individually.
I love a good mask and this one left my face nicely soft and glowy. It contains konjac root which over time will help smooth fine lines. I apply the oil after, which is nice and light, and my skin loved it! The mist can be worn over that or over makeup for a nice set.
Ive also been really happy with the makeup products they carry as well. I’ve been using the Dew Skin Moisturizing Coverge Foundation which was an Allure Best of Beauty Award winner and contains SPF 20 broad coverage. A lot of foundations contain SPF but it’s so important to ensure it is “broad coverage” or blocks out both UVA and UVB rays. The SPF number is only indicative of UVB coverage, the rays that cause your skin to burn, but without UVA protection, you are still left susceptible to cancer-causing rays and the lack of burning will leave you unknowingly at risk. I was happy with this as a daily lighter coverage foundation, it has a dewy, glowing finish that looks natural.
I also purchased a few of the lip glosses in shades Bare Shimmer, Opal and Buff. These have a glossy finish and are a nice gloss. I love to keep one in my most used bags and in the car so they are always handy and I bought neutral colors so they will go with anything!
So the end result is that I’m very happy with the products, I’ve found this line to be completely addictive and I can’t get enough of it! As a direct sales company, I did sign up as a consultant because I believe in the company’s mission and it’s really something I’ve been looking for for years! If it’s something you would like to try, please email me through my contact form and I will explain how you can get a free gift and 15% back in product credit with each purchase!
Nothing says it’s the holidays like a houseful of guests with good food and drinks to keep everyone merry! I know for me, that’s one of the things I look forward to the most, seeing friends and family that I don’t often see throughout the year. Everyone really seems to slow down and make time to stop in.
If you’re the guest in this scenario, don’t arrive empty handed! You also don’t need to dash around cruising aisles to find that perfect hostess gift. My go-to gift is often a selection from the liquor aisle because it’s often very welcome at a holiday party. The hostess will appreciate another bottle to pull out when guests stop by. Different from the standard bottle of wine, I like to gift a bottle of Bacardi Superior rum, it’s so versatile for a variety of festive drinks, hot and cold.
Need a recipe for a signature drink for your gathering? Try this one here!
Id love to hear if you’ve tried this recipe and I’m sure it will be the star of your next party!
Well friends, it is that time of year again where the snow is falling and malls are getting swarmed and there are smells of holiday baking everywhere. Now, I would normally be celebrating Christmas but in our home we’ve decided to leave that holiday in the past (a whole story on it’s own) and have decided to welcome a new tradition that just feels right for us.
As a Hanukkah/Chanukah/Channukkah newcomer, I’ve learned a few things along the way. First, is that I’ve never actually ever thought about what Hanukkah is actually about. There is such beautiful meaning and story behind this eight day event around the 25th of the month if Kislev and if you aren’t familiar, I recommend looking into it! I’ve also learned that in comparison to its distant cousin tree worshipping holiday, there is a serious lack of Hallmark specials.
This is my first year and I’ve really enjoyed learning about the traditions and cannot wait to attempt frying up some sufganiyot!
Being that the traditional colors are blue with white, silver and gold, that’s exactly what I followed for my tablescape. A silver or white tablecloth is a great first layer, I topped mine with this navy velvet runner full of silver sparkles. It looks like a starry night sky which I thought was appropriate for this Festival of Lights.
These glasses were $4 apiece at Superstore mixed in with their holiday tableware. I love them on the table but they also can double as a tea light or votive holder!
The chocolate coins or gelt can really vary in price. My favorite are the large gold ones I bought that I scattered on the table. They have a menorah design on them and were a bit steep at $12 for 10 at Indigo. I was able to find these silver and blue ones (they have every color of the rainbow) at Party City and they are $0.09 per coin so much more economical. The downside was that the coins replicate US coins but I’m sure the kids won’t mind for their dreidel games! The dreidels I found were also from Indigo for $3 each.
After looking at a variety of menorahs (or hanukiahs as the 9 branched ones are called) I finally decided to purchase this one. It is a smaller size at 8” tall but it does look beautiful and I’m happy with it. I can also use it year round where it’s less of a central focus and more of a nice added touch. I purchased mine from Ahuva.com along with the candles and some cookie cutters. They have an amazing selection of Hanukkah and other Feast day items!
I found I had a hard time finding decor pieces locally but I did find this Happy Hanukkah accent (on the mantel) from HomeSense, they had a few menorahs as well. I did see some blue toned servingware and linens that would work great for the theme as well. I liked the idea of lights for this Festival so I added the string lights around my fireplace with some general winter decor.
I had to let the kids get involved of course so they made a ton of paper snowflakes and blue stars to hang from the ceiling and I think it adds a nice whimsical touch to the space!
Lastly I was just about jumping for joy when I found a Hanukkah gingerbread house kit! I’ve seen these now at both Sobeys and Bed, Bath & Beyond and for under $15.
I hope this gives you some inspiration for your Feast of Dedication event! Would love to hear any ideas of how you all decorate because I’m still looking for more to add!
Also if anyone would like to help me petition Netflix for some Hanukkah specials, the more the merrier!
So this last weekend I attended my first C-Tribe festival here in Edmonton, it’s a weekend 2-day event and it’s main purpose is to bring new and upcoming ideas from industry to the people.
To start, something that really set the chill vibe for what the weekend was going to be about was the early morning meditation event. It was at 7am, and I am neverrrrr anywhere that early but I dragged my butt out of bed and beat the sunrise and am truly appreciative that I did. The feeling of serenity viewing the lights of downtown from 20 floors up and watching the city come to life from behind floor to ceiling glass windows is something I have never experienced and may never again. A roomful of people hushed and clearing our minds for the day that would come.
Each morning and afternoon there would be speaker presentations on topics including fashion technology, travel, artificial intelligence, blockchain, real estate and health technologies. Friday night ended with a Havana Nights Party that I wasn’t able to attend but I heard some amazing feedback from that and apparently the food was amazing. It was facilitated by one of the co-owners of Havana Now (a Cuban experience agency) Jaime Rather, whom I also had the pleasure of seeing speak at her presentation Saturday. She spoke about her love story and how her love for world experiences developed and eventually led her to her business partner. Her story was unexpected and lovely.
Another presenter I sat in on in the Experiential Travel block was Brady Hedlund, who created an ever evolving business called Life Before Work which began with his taste for fun in Thailand and has evolved into a business meant to help people find their reason to put life before work in an effort to do what brings joy by travel. I also heard what Tyler Waye had to say about work and his view that as life goes on, we may change our mind about our career direction and how happiness is more easily found in adapting our career to what we love rather than jumping ship and starting fresh. Tyler is an author and founder of YoungLeaders.World.
There were some other seriously amazing talks going on and I’m so sad to have missed them. An incredible opportunity to hear from some amazing minds both Edmonton local and national. I am really looking forward to the next one as this is a bi-annual event and it is definitely garnering attention from the community and setting itself up for a one of a kind experience that will draw people from all around. They are already planning for their next event, the C-Tribe Music Innovation Festival July 25-28th of 2018 and I am super excited for that!
The weekend was concluded with a fashion show sponsored by many local designers and retailers. It took place in the lobby of Enbridge Centre and the atmosphere was buzzing. Four hundred in attendance with some great entertainment and gorgeous fashion. The most popular event of the weekend and did not disappoint.
If you have never attended C-Tribe, make sure you follow them along for updates on upcoming events and projects.