Category: Family

Ensuring Financial Security and Well Being for Your Family with FormalWill.ca

FormalWill.ca

One of the most important documents you will ever develop for your family is putting together a will to ensure that your family and friends know your wishes and that the minor details are taken care of.

Have you thought about who your estate will go to? What if your children are minors – who will take care of them in the event that both your spouse and yourself pass away? While these are not the most pleasant questions to have to ask yourself they are necessary to ensure the security of your family in the event you pass away.

FormalWill.caWhat is a will?

A will is a legal document that will grant your executor the power to divide your property, name who will control your estate and if you have any minor children who will be their legal guardian to care for them when you are not there to do so.

Why does this matter?

This matters for so many reasons. Without any legal document containing your wishes, your estate could go undistributed or be distributed to individuals you did not wish your estate to go to. Your family may not be able to access the necessary funds that they need. Your children may not go to the guardian you had spoken to and wished for them to go to in the event that something happened to you.

So what is holding you back from getting a will? For us it has always been finding the time and the cost of creating a will, not to mention the whole concept is scary. I am terrified of leaving my children alone but it is because of them that I know how important it is to ensure my will is complete and up to date.

Here comes the easy part! FormalWill.ca has made preparing a will simple and convenient. You can now complete your will online from at home in a few, quick steps.

FormalWill.ca

First step: Speak with your spouse about your wishes and who you want to step in as guardian and executor if your spouse does not survive you. You want to make sure this person is aware of you appointing them as guardian and executor. Now this may be an awkward conversation (trust me on this one!) but you will feel so much better after you have done so!

FormalWill.ca

Second Step: Visit FormalWill.ca and create an account. This will take you literally seconds and you will receive a confirmation email with your account details. On the second screen you will enter basic information (name, where you live, spousal information, children).

FormalWill.ca

Third Step: Name your beneficiaries and executors of your will. You can name up to three executors. If you have specific gifts in mind (wedding bands, special jewellery) you get to name those gifts and who you would like them to go to. If your children are minors at the time you can list up to three guardians to be appointed to care for them as well as the age they must be in order to receive money held in trust for them. Any donations? Name them here.

After making a payment of $69 CDN, your will is complete! Whew! What a relief, right? The will is sent via email to the email account you entered on the initial set up. This email will contain instructions on how to have the will signed and witnessed as well as suggestions on how to safely store your will.

FormalWill.ca has simplified the process of creating and putting together a will for individuals and families. With three easy steps, those you love will have their future secure in case you aren’t there to be able to do so.

Have you started putting together a will? Have you looked at possible executors and/or guardians for your children? If not – what is holding you back?

Disclosure: I received the above mentioned product in exchange for this review. All opinions expressed are my own.

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Fun Family Activities at Blue Mountain Village #WinterWarrior

blue-mountain

After wrapping up three days at Blue Mountain (staying at the gorgeous Westin Blue Mountain) we were amazed at how much the village has to offer. Blue Mountain Village has something to offer for every member of the family, from the youngest to the eldest.

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

We started off our stay at Westin Blue Mountain by dropping off our bags early and hitting the Hike and Tube. It was a short walk (less than five minutes) to the location and easy to locate as it was right on the main road.

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

I haven’t had that much fun in a long time! The staff were fantastic and hilarious as they spun us down the hill. I honestly don’t know how they don’t go home sore from twirling people all day but it looked like they were having a fantastic time! Our youngest was terrifying me as he was laughing and telling them to spin him more. The ‘hike’ up the hill was short and easy to do for most individuals. Our youngest kept getting free rides up the hill by staying in his tube and getting us to drag him up (oh the joys of being young and lightweight!).

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

On our second day we were ready to hit the slopes (or in our case the novice course!). Blue Mountain has an incredible novice area with excellent and patient instructors. I would highly recommend if this is your first time trying out the sport to meet with an instructor and have them go over the basics with you – honestly this is so important both for your own enjoyment and for personal safety.

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

My eldest son took to snowboarding like it was nothing! He was doing his second turn across the open area while I was still navigating how to push the snowboard with one leg and pull my leg across without falling. I could not believe how much work it was – these guys make it look super easy.

It was truly amazing to see the amount of young children on the course. They took to the skiing and snowboarding like it was second nature to them. They were fearless in getting up the mini hills and gliding back down the hill. My son had tried snowboarding before in the past but I was so grateful for all the time and energy our instructor spent on teaching my son the basics. It truly made a big difference.

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

The Kids at Blue Mountain located out of South Base Lodge is the perfect opportunity for your youngest members (ages 3-5) to learn in a quieter environment with the focus solely on children. A short walk (roughly ten minutes) or you can take the shuttle from the Westin hotel lands you at South Base Lodge and the Kids at Blue Mountain area. The children were adorable as they stepped out on the skiis and up the ‘carpet’. The instructors were fabulous as they came down the hill behind the children holding on to the jacket and guiding them through each stage.

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

The Plunge Aquatic Centre is located just adjacent to the Westin Blue Mountain. It took us under five minutes to walk there from the hotel. The Plunge Aquatic Centre contains both an indoor and outdoor pool (with access through the pools), indoor water playground, hot tub, rope swings, slides and basketball nets. Swimming outdoors in the cold temperatures (-26C) was an experience to remember. Your face could barely feel the cold but your eyelashes would have frost on them! The steam from the pool would become thick at times and you could sometimes only see a couple of feet in front of you which was pretty awesome! There were plenty of lifejackets and the pool space was quite spacious. Each pool is kept quite warm so you never felt cold.

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

The Ridge Runner Coaster is an exciting single person (or you can go with your children) that runs through the mountain. The coaster takes you on a 1,085 metres down the mountain. It was fun, scary and exhilarating all at the same time! At times you felt like you were going to fly over the side of the mountain. While I screamed the whole way down the mountain both of my children laughed the whole way!

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

We also spent an afternoon at Crock A Doodle painting our own ceramic creations. There was a wide variety of ceramic options to choose from and which you can settle in right away. Your creations are left over night and can be picked up the next day after four or for a small fee can be mailed to your home. We just received our creations in the mail today!

Blue Mountain Crock A Doodle

Here is a collection of some of my favourite photos around Blue Mountain village:

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

Family Fun at Blue Mountain

What are your favourite winter activities? What activity would you love to do at Blue Mountain?

Come back again tomorrow for more Blue Mountain fun!

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Fun For the Entire Family at Westin Blue Mountain #WinterWarrior

Winter vacations are some of the most fun and thrilling experiences you can have as a family. They are a time for new adventures and venturing out of your comfort zone. Just North of Toronto you can find all this and more at Blue Mountain! And the perfect place to stay while you play? The Westin Blue Mountain.

Westin-Blue-Mountain

Last week, my family and I ventured the two hours North of Toronto to Collingwood (talk about a beautiful drive up there) to test the hills and see the beauty of Blue Mountain during the winter months. We had always been hesitant of a winter family ski vacation because of our children being so young but I was pleasantly surprised to see so many young children on the hills and in the village (putting my skills to shame that is for sure!).

westin-blue-mountain

We checked in at Westin Blue Mountain and what a beautiful sight it was! Standing tall and prominent against the hills and village of Blue Mountain, Westin Blue Mountain made us feel like we had escaped to another country.

We stayed in a large two bedroom suite that came with a complete kitchen, two bathrooms, balcony and stunning views from each room overlooking the pond and village. It became habit for me to open the curtains wide right around the living room so that we could enjoy the panoramic view of the village, hills, pool and pond.

westin-blue-mountain

The interior of our room was stunning. The suite had a dining room table and the kitchen came with all the utensils and appliances you would need to cook during your stay. The large windows give a light and airy feel to the rooms while instantly connecting you with the outdoors and Blue Mountain village. It was awesome to stand at the window and watch the village wake up as well as watch the night life!

westin-blue-mountain

One of the best features of the room? The bathroom! I could have lived in the shower alone – the shower head was incredible and felt like you were standing outside in a light rain shower. It was calming and soothing – the perfect way to relax both in the morning and evening.

westin-blue-mountain

The Westin Blue Mountain features:

  • outdoor pool and hot tub (an incredible, must experience activity!)
  • fitness studio
  • Kids Club (with mini arcade and play room)
  • New Balance gear lending
  • Westin Well Being
  • In Room Spa services
  • Dining in the hotel at Oliver and Bonacini
  • pet friendly hotel
  • valet services
  • ski concierge

The hotel also has close access to Plunge Aquatic Centre and Le Scandinave Spa.

And the staff? Incredible! I have never been to a hotel where the staff were so helpful and happy. If we became lost or unsure there was always a staff member to help us out. Several staff members that greeted us on our first day were around for our last day and remembered us which was such a nice surprise. The amazing staff really helped make our stay perfect.

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The Westin Blue Mountain hotel is the perfect place to spend your Blue Mountain family vacation. Watch out this week on the blog for more Blue Mountain fun including: Family Activities, Dining at Blue and Le Scandinave Spa.

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Keep the Laughter Coming This Winter Season with #Netflix #StreamTeam

Brrrr!! It is getting cold outside – this morning was a chilly -21C with the wind chill! I honestly did not want to get out of bed it was so cold. But here I am up and working away even though all I want to do is curl up on the couch with a warm blanket and a great movie playing.

With the temperature drop there seems to always come the rise of cold and flu symptoms which tend to peak in these early months, trend off and start up again near the end of the winter. Last week I was under the weather with a gastro bug for two days. For two days I was pampered by my boys and was able to watch all of my favourite comedies on Netflix (okay in honesty only the second part is true – I like to imagine my boys were pampering me!).

I love my cartoons – the animated movies that they are producing are incredible with humour that both adults and children alike can appreciate. Those two days were spent watching all of my favourite animated comedies and laughing my way back to health. My two favourite movies of all time have to be Despicable Me (love those minions!!) and Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs. I can’t even begin to count how many times we have watched these movies but they are just as funny each and every time (Bee Do Bee Do Bee Do….).

Laughter is so important for all of us (and too often we are not spending enough time laughing and bonding with the ones we love) so we should always make time to do the things we love together, watch funny movies together and just be plain old silly.

Don’t believe me? Research has shown that laughter is important for:

  • laughter boosts the immune system
  • laughter triggers the release of endorphins (remember those natural feel good hormones in your body, yep those ones!)
  • increase blood flow which in turn helps the heart
  • decreases stress
  • improves mood
  • strengthens relationships

Do you have a go to movie for the winter months when you and the family are stuck in bed unwell? Or maybe not unwell but just want to spend the day in bed getting cuddles from the little ones (how I miss those days!!).

Disclosure: I am a Netflix StreamTeam member and receive perks. All opinions expressed are my own.

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The #FallMarketplace at Walmart: Full of #BrightIdeas to Make Fall Cleaning a Snap! #shop

 This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone.

This holiday long weekend flew by at lightning speed! Not only did we celebrate Thanksgiving with our families but it was also my birthday (woot woot!!). We had so much to prepare for these occasions; purchasing meals, appetizers, reservations and the dreaded cleaning. On Friday, we headed into the #FallMarketplace demonstrations at Walmart (as part of the #CollectiveBias shop) and checked out the Fall Cleaning demo that featured Scrubbing Bubbles T-Gels.

Fall cleaning is one of my least favourite things to do – especially when it comes to the bathrooms! I live with three boys and somehow no matter what I do the toilet is never as clean as I wish it would be. It probably doesn’t help that our youngest likes to help clean the toilet by peeing around the rim (his exact explanation when I caught him doing this!!).

I don’t know about you but I honestly feel that the bathroom happens to be the one room that says a lot about your home. When I know that company is coming over I want my bathroom to look and smell fresh (without having to spend hours achieving this look!). At the demo on Friday we were able to smell and check out the Scrubbing Bubbles T-Gels in: Mountain Morning, Glade Rain shower and Citrus with Hydrogen Peroxide.We loved the smells so much we picked up all three scents.

We decided to match the scent of the toilet cleaning gel to our plug in air freshener and started with the citrus with hydrogen peroxide. I have never used T-Gels before so I was quite pleased to see how easy to assemble they were and how compact the kit was. It was literally pull the two pieces out of the box and connect them together and I was done. All that was left was to  gently apply the T-Gel to the side of the toilet and with every flush the toilet is cleansed and a pleasant citrus smell remains.

The best part? The T-Gels can last up to six weeks! That refreshing smell from the toilet is still going strong after applying it on the Friday evening. Not to mention our youngest things it is super cool to have this green thing stuck on the inside of the toilet.

With our bathroom taken care of with Scrubbing Bubbles, we were able to forget about the cleaning and focus on the important stuff – family time! We baked chocolate cupcakes, painted pumpkins to give as gifts, made special hand print keepsakes for family members and not to mention the cooking. I still feel like I am detoxing from all the delicious food we had all weekend. It was well worth every moment – the love and happiness that we shared are memories that will last forever.

How do you make fall cleaning easy so that you can focus on the important holiday events?

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