Shop Quebec - Vestibule Mini

A few weeks ago, on Clover's first official day of summer vacation (my older two still had school for one more day), I was invited to the opening of Vestibule Mini, the kiddos version of Montreal design dynamo, Vestibule. It was the loveliest morning with my youngest girl and the shop was absolutely beautiful!

photo credit: Laurie-Anne Thot
Chloe ate breakfast right before we left to walk over to Vestibule Mini (nice that it's just down the street from us!) but that didn't stop her from eating basically every snack they has laid out at the shop, lol! I think she ate two croissants, grapes, cheese, and fresh orange juice. Oh to be four again!

Vestibule Mini gifted me this beautiful Quebec vinyl print on wooden rails (only available in store) at the opening and I'm so in love! They have tons of sweet kid's room decor. I also picked up these magnetic wooden rails for hanging up the kids art work. Just the perfect touch to a kid's oasis!

Vestibule Mini - 5170 St Laurent Blvd, Montreal or online at www.boutiquevestibule.com/mini


The Best Picnic Meal - Hamburger Salad!

In the summer months we love to stay outside as long as we can. It keeps the house clean and the kids tired, not to mention it's the best time of year to get to know our neighbours! I love picnics in the park with friends and we usually have about one per week in the summer months, but packing food for a picnic can be tricky. There aren't barbecues at our local park, so anything BBQed is out which is a real shame because what is summer if not the time of year I can turn my oven off and cook outside!? Also, I only eat burgers in the summer months so they're a treat I don't like to miss out on, even if there is no BBQ in sight. Hence, Hamburger Salad.

This salad tasted just like a hamburger! It's filling and salty and juicy and sour. It has meat and carbs and veggies and pickles, just like a burger, but in salad form. So you can put it all in one container for the beach or park. It's also a great meal to bring to a potluck or to a friend who could use a hand tonight.

  • 1 lb lean ground beef, seasoned with Montreal steak spice and mustard powder. Optional add ins are welcome and we could go on forever - onion powder, ground pepper, garlic, chili flakes... you do you. Just season that meat nicely, as you'd like your burger to taste. 
  • 1 cup couscous
  • 1 romaine heart (about 2.5 cups chopped lettuce)
  • tomatoes
  • red onion
  • pickles

Mix together the juice of two lemon with olive oil (equal parts, which will depend on how much juice your lemon yields), add garlic, grainy mustard, salt and pepper.

  • As your seasoned meat is cooking, chop your pickles, tomatoes, lettuce and onion. 
  • When the meat is almost cooked, pour the dry couscous into the frying pan with your meat. It will soak up the fat and taste so good! Then add about 1/2 cup water and put a lid on the frying pan for 2 minutes. If your frying pan is too large for a lid, use a cookie sheet.
  • Once your meat and couscous is cooked (it cooks so quickly so stay nearby!), set aside to slightly cool. Once cooled down slightly (you just don't want it boiling hot), mix in the chopped veggies and pour over the dressing.


Shop Quebec - Mlle Léonie

My girls have never been too interested in having me play with their hair, which is just as well because I'm not very skilled at it! Growing up, my mom did amazing braids in our hair. She was a hair ninja, and I just didn't inherit her abilities. But when we shaved Chloe's head last December, we started looking for little feminine touches to add to her trademark short cut.

I found Mlle Léonie when I was looking for handmade hair bows, made in Canada. Mlle Léonie ships their sweet treasures all around the world and I have to say, their fabric choices and little bows are just the cutest! I love that they're based in Quebec too! Shopping local isn't always easy depending on where you live, but if you just add your home province, state, or country to the filters when searching Etsy, you can easily find local shops without even leaving the house! That's how I found Mlle Léonie and I was so glad I did!

First of all, my girls who never cared about hair things are now obsessed and want to wear a hair bow every day! I love the headband option because I always worry about pushing too hard when putting barrettes in my girl's hair - especially when they were babies! The little felt clips are easy to put in and don't rip the hair at all. My girls love these little headbands and bows!

It's really fun to see them getting "ready" for going to school or church and always finishing off with a hair bow. We're a pretty casual family and I don't consider myself a girlie girl at all, nor have we raised them to be overly feminine nor Oli overly masculine (Oli loves to bake and pretends to be a dad with the dolls, and the girls collect super hero cards and play with dinosaurs), but this is a sweet trend my girls are into, I must say! You can shop Mlle Léonie on her website or her Etsy shop :)

This post was in collaboration with Mlle Leonie,
All opinions shared are 100% my own.
To book a collaboration, contact me!


The Best Hot Day Activity That Will Keep Your Kids Occupied For HOURS

This won't be a long post, but I had to share this little activity I prepared for Oli and Chloe this week while we're melting in Montreal. My friends from Texas and South Carolina and Hawaii who are in Montreal or nearby right now all say it's hotter here than where they're from! Whattttt!? Yes, we're covered in snow for 7 months of the year, but our summers are HOT.

I got this idea from my friend Vanessa when I saw her do it last summer. Take a large plastic tub, fill it with water, add plastic toys that you don't care about, and freeze overnight. Having a block of ice in your freezer will also help your freezer not work as hard, so that's a bonus! Then give the kids secondhand cutlery or dad's wrench if they're old enough to handle something as heavy duty as tools, and let them spend hours chipping away to find their treasures! Oli stopped after an hour and there was still so many hidden toys. I popped it back in the freezer and he's still playing away today! It's an outdoor activity that will keep them cool and occupied and there's no mess because the water will just evaporate in 10 seconds in this heat! Have fun!