Love is stronger than hate !


Here is a thing you didn’t know about me. Even though I wrote my master’s degree thesis about mobbing, bullying and sexual harassment, I get terribly upset in real life when these things happen to real people. I usually would distract myself not to listen to the details of someone’s bullying or harassment experience.

And since I became a mother, the tragically ending bullying stories, that we hear sometimes in the media, are literally breaking my heart. The worst part for me, is that I can’t do nothing about these things. And all these stories, they leave me with the feeling of helplessness. And honestly, it’s a pretty crappy felling. I really don’t like feeling that way, so I turn my head, tune out, or simply I shut off the tv.

Yes, I’m a bystander. I look at the misery of others, and I turn my head. I think that since I can’t do anything I’ll just stop looking. And that surely there is someone else helping. Researches shows that the more people witness a tragedy, the less chances are that someone would actually help. Because they are all bystanders. They all think that someone else will help.

So when I heard about this bulling story, my heart just sank. This 14 year old autistic boy was challenged by his classmates to do a ALS Ice Bucket challenge. But instead of cold water they threw a bucket full of urine, spit and feces. What do you do, when you hear stories like that happening ? I usually would try to forget, since there is nothing really I can do.

But I found out that there is. The words #1 found raising site, GiveForward decided that this boy and his family needs to see that love is stronger than hate. So they started a fundraiser, to get 5000$ for him and his family.

When we decide not to be bystanders any more, then magic can happen. Like it already happened for a couple of newlywed, that lost their legs during the Boston Marathon bombing. GiveForward has raised for them nearly 900$K to cover all their future medical expenses. To show them that love is stronger than hate.

It really raises my spirit to know, that there are so many people out there, who with the right resources, are making a difference.

So what we can do is either to donate, either to leave this boy a message of support. Let’s show this boy and his family that love really is stronger than hate!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post on behalf of GiveForward however all opinions are my own.

Super foods for toddlers


I’m super exited to introduce you to Ashley, from Ashley’s Health blog, who is guest posting here today, with her great post on super foods for toddlers:

Being a parent brings on a whole variety of challenges, challenges that feel impossible to handle. It’s not easy to admit, but these challenges secretly make parenting such a valuable, rewarding experience. If you haven’t had kids yet, don’t worry it will be a thrill of a lifetime and you won’t regret it !

One big challenge that I’ve personally recognized, that’s a common struggle among parents, is getting  kids to eat healthy. Nutrition at the toddler stage plays a significant role in their development.  Some parents get that, and that’s why it’s truly challenging when children don’t want to have anything to do, with good and healthy food.

I know most children hate veggies. It’s a significant challenge to get kids to eat them. It doesn’t even matter if you hide the vegetables in other foods; kids just seem to smell them out and avoid them like the plague.

Sure, veggies are an acquired taste, but they’re packed with vitamins and nutrients that kids need, in order to grow healthy and strong. Therefore, the best way to give toddlers what they need is through superfoods, which disguise their benefits in a yummy taste.

1. Goji Berries.
Serve goji berries as an anytime snack. They have a sweet taste that kids love, and are packed with antioxidants and vitamin C. It’s not a small amount of antioxidants either, they’re are packed with antioxidants. With the technology available now, to check antioxidant level, I was amazed on how powerful goji berries were with increasing antioxidant levels. These antioxidants will build your child’s immune system. Goji berries also have tiny seeds hidden inside that offer extra fiber for toddlers.

2. Blueberries.
Blueberries contain rich antioxidants, and research suggests they help improve brain function. Serve them as a snack, or blend them together with water and freeze them for an afternoon blueberry ice pop. Many companies are creating snack foods with dried blueberries in them and I know my kids love them.

3. Tomatoes.
Kids pick tomatoes off their burgers, but they might not know that tomatoes are the main ingredient in pasta sauce. Tomatoes are rich in lycopene, which may help protect against many illnesses. Tomatoes can be an acquired taste, so for some toddlers it can be tough for them to consume. My big recommendation with tomatoes is to stay away from ketchups that are high in refined sugar. There are ketchups and pasta sauces that have no refined sugar in them and they’re really good. It’s good to get your toddler started on healthy tomato items.

4. Oatmeal.
Oatmeal with a little honey starts any breakfast right. It’s a fiber-rich grain, which digests slowly and gives your toddler plenty of energy through the morning. Granola also contains oats and makes a good snack when it’s combined with raisins, goji berries and nuts. Oatmeal is incredibly good for you. The problem is that food companies have killed the nutritional value of oatmeal. Once people buy the processed and sugared up oatmeal, they end up adding more sugared up processed ingredients to it, which ends up killing all of the value oatmeal really offers. Get your child started on really healthy natural oatmeal and it may surprise you how much happier your child will be.

5. Fruit.
Fruit of any type contains loads of vitamins and minerals for growing toddlers. Instead of chips and candy bars, replace them with berries, melon balls and apple slices. Fruit also contains fiber and keeps toddlers regular. If your budget doesn’t allow loads of fruit, opt for frozen fruits, which also make good snacks for total rehydration.

6. Sunflower Seeds.
Sunflower seeds have to be the most underrated, or least talked about superfood. These seeds are packed with valuable nutrients and antioxidants. The best part though is that kids love them to snack on. They work well for a small pre-meal snack because they aren’t going to make your toddler full. The vitamin E is what makes these seeds worth it. Watch out for the salted seeds, because thigh levels of sodium naturally kills the value these seeds offer.

7. Cocoa Powder or Dark Chocolate.
Kids can have their chocolate and enjoy it, thanks to cocoa powder’s benefits. Cocoa powder contains a high amount of flavonoids, which are known to improve heart and oral health. Some studies suggest, that they also protect skin from sun damage. Avoid processed cocoa powder that removes the flavonoids and contains more sugar. Kids can get addicted to milk chocolate, so it’s better to get them used to dark chocolate. When they want candy at the store, get them the darkest chocolate and it will impact their life for the positive. Opt for at least 70 percent cocoa powder or dark chocolate.

Other superfoods that toddlers could benefit from include broccoli, sweet potatoes and avocados. Shredding these foods and placing them in casseroles, burritos and salsas is a great way to hide them all, and still give your toddler foods that benefit their growing bodies.

If you’ve been having any troubles with getting your child to eat healthy, hopefully this helps. These are also really good health rules, that I believe parents should understand, if they’re trying to help their children eat healthier.

About the Author : Ashley Erikson.

I’m a happy mom of three healthy boys. They’ve taught me many valuable lessons over the past ten years and it’s been a roller coaster that I wouldn’t trade for the world. I started off my career as a physical trainer but recently I have begun my journey as a nutritionist. You can view my thoughts, and website at

Fall dessert : spiced pistachio cupcakes with white chocolate cream cheese frosting


As much as I usually cook and bake from scratch, sometimes I do appreciate shortcuts🙂. This is one lovely, fast and not totally from scratch recipe, that will turn the ordinary spiced cake mix in to a gastronomical event at your place🙂. It’s all about this amazing and super simple white chocolate & cream cheese frosting combined with the crunch of pistachios. It’s such a great taste mix, and makes for a perfect fall dessert. So, here is what you need :

Spiced cake mix
1 1/2 cup of crushed pistachios

1 cup soft cream cheese
1/2 cup melted white chocolate chips


Follow the instructions on the box, and in the end add pistachios. Leave some on the side for decoration. Wait for the cupcakes to cool down a bit before frosting them.


So the white chocolate cream cheese frosting is so easy it’s funny. Using the electric mixer combine together soft cream cheese ( make sure to take it out of a refrigerator 30 minutes before you start ) and melted white chocolate chips. That’s it, no need for extra sugar or butter. This frosting will stay intact on your cupcakes after frosting, yet won’t get tough. Honestly, it’s my favourite🙂.


Sprinkle with extra pistachios. I hope you’ll like them ! Actually I know you will🙂

Organizing on a budget


I’m really terrible at organizing! Honestly, nobody should be taking me as an example. Just have a look at the before pictures and you’ll understand. So I’m not here to give anyone advices on how to organize, don’t worry. I just felt like I finally achieved something in that domaine, and I decided to share that with you🙂.

My main organizing failures were the entryway and the craft bookcase. It could hardly be any worst than that.

For the entry way I bought this pretty piece of furniture at Target, but I soon realized that it is a catastrophe.

Here it is, the sad before picture :

Main issues: not enough space. Semi decorated. Constant mess.

Solution :
1. DIY shelf that my hubby added.
Now I can have that pretty pair of shoes exposed, and the comfy one hidden underneath:).

2. Big chunky basket.
Perfect place for scarfs, gloves, baby shoes and my bag.

3. Practical decor.
Now the painting is actually hiding the light switch. There is a bowl for the change and the keys.

4. Lighting. Adding the 4$ Target lamp was pretty much the best idea ever !

And here is the after :

And now please have a look at my personal failure , the craft/ kid activity bookshelf.

Main issues: zero organization, huge mess, old projects mixed with supplies and books.

The disastrous before:


Solution :

1. Saying goodbye.
Throwing away old projects, coloured through books, and unused cookbooks really made a change.

2. Adding storage options.
As much as baskets are a great organizing solution, throwing everything in one, doesn’t actually solve the organizing problem (lol). So I added different sized jars from IKEA to contain the weirdest stuff🙂

And here is the after :


So if you too feel like organizing a space is beyond your capacities, try :
– throwing away / giving away stuff
– adding baskets and smaller containers

My places to buy them cheap are : Ikea, Target,or Home Sense. You can also try garage sales and Salvation Army.

So, are you good in organization? What are your tips and tricks ? I’d love to know !🙂

Hearty fall peperonata


Fall is here. Yey! For weeks now I’ve been hoping for the season to change. Anyone who’ve been nursing through excessive heats will understand me. I know I’ll regret the end of summer soon enough, when the temperature will drop and it’ll became freezing. But for now I’m thrilled by crisp air, sunny and not-too-hot afternoons and colourful leaves:)! And the harvest market! Here in Montreal The Market is the place to be: full of little gourmet foodie boutiques and fresh off the field produce. Last time I’ve been there I came home with these huge colourful bell peppers and amazing ripe tomatoes. And that’s a call for hearty fall peperonata! Full of flavour, chunky and utterly satisfying on a cold fall afternoon.

Bell peppers
5 big ripe tomatoes
(or 1 can if diced tomatoes)
5 Smoked sausages
1 cup mushrooms
1 cup colourful potatoes
3 carrots
1 small eggplant

4 cloves of garlic
Pinch of dried chilli
Pinch of cardamon
Pinch of dried ginger
Salt & pepper

Cut veggies. Stir fry peppers, carrots and eggplant( cut in small cubes) for around 5 to 7 min, meanwhile cook potatoes cut in slices, and sausages (separately lol). Pour tomatoes cut in cubes (or canned) over your veggies, add pressed garlic and spices. Let cook for around 20 minutes on medium heat. Add sausages cut in slices and potatoes. Let it simmer together for a couple of minutes. Serve with fresh Italian bread. Enjoy !

Peach & whipped mascarpone parfait


It’s the season for peaches! Nothing beats the taste of a ripe, dripping with juice peach. And if you add some whipped mascarpone cream..Yum! This is one extremely easy dessert, that will please even the most difficult guests🙂. I prepared a version for adults and one for kids. The peach parfait for adults was made with peaches that where marinated with white rum and maple sirup. But if you’re not in to rum you can stick to the kid version, it’s still delicious!

Around 4 big ripe peaches
1/4 cup maple sirup
1 shoot of white rum ( adult version )

1 cup mascarpone cheese
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar

Shredded almonds

Cut peaches in to small cubes, add maple sirup and white rum ( if you’re preparing the adult version ). Set aside. Whip cream with sugar. Add mascarpone and mix it until it’s smooth and fluffy. You can add some more sugar, if you like it sweeter. Now place peaches in a tall glass, and top with whipped mascarpone and shredded almonds.
Enjoy !