Monthly Archives: December 2015


December 16, 2015


Baked Oatmeal - perfect for your family holiday breakfast!

It won’t be long now until family and friends start rolling in for the holidays! With Christmas only 9 days away it’s time to start thinking about you’re going to feed everyone! When you’ve got house guests, you need to think about more than just your Christmas turkey dinner! When you’re feeding the masses, or even just a couple extra mouths, this baked oatmeal is an easy, stress free solution!

Healthy Baked Oatmeal - Gluten-free & Vegan |

If you’re trying to accommodate special diets this holiday, this bake is a great option that everyone will enjoy! It’s gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, vegan, and refined sugar free! That means it’s pretty healthy friends! 

This recipe is so easy! You just mix the ingredients together and bake! Then 35 minutes later you have a warm, nutritious and delicious breakfast. No rushing around. Just a stress free start to your day! Plus, any breakfast that is hassle free and allows me to spend more time with my friends and family is a huge win for me! 

We like to serve our oatmeal bake with coconut whipped cream! If you’ve never made coconut whipped cream before it’s super easy and a total game-changer! Simply refrigerate a can of full fat coconut milk (reduced fat won’t work). When the coconut milk is cooled it will solidify; scoop the hardened coconut milk into your stand mixer (you will have 1/2 can of coconut water left over in the can – just save it for a smoothie!) and add in 2 Tbsp of maple syrup and 1 tsp of vanilla. Whip in stand mixer until you have whipped cream! Then spoon right on top of your oatmeal bake! So good!!

I’d love to hear how your oatmeal bake turns out! 

Baked Oatmeal
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
35 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
35 min
  1. 2 cups unsweetened almond milk (or sub any non-dairy milk)
  2. 3 Tbsp melted coconut oil
  3. 1/3 cup maple syrup
  4. 1 Tbsp vanilla extract
  5. 1 Tbsp ground flax seed
  6. 2 cups of Rolled Oats (or 1 cup rolled oats + 1 cup steel cut oats)
  7. 1 tsp baking powder
  8. 1 tsp cinnamon
  9. 1/2 tsp fine grain sea salt
  10. 1 cup walnuts
  11. 1 cup raspberries (or other mixed berries)
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  2. Grease 9x9 baking dish.
  3. In a small bowl whisk together almond milk, melted coconut oil, maple syrup, vanilla and flax seed and set aside.
  4. In a large bowl combine oats, baking powder, cinnamon, salt, 1/2 cup walnuts and 1/2 cup raspberries and transfer to greased baking dish.
  5. Pour almond milk mixture over oat mixture.
  6. Top with remaining 1/2 cup of walnuts and 1/2 cup of raspberries.
  7. Bake for 35 minutes.
  8. Allow to cool for 15 minutes before serving as oatmeal will set.
  9. Enjoy!
In Everything

Hosting a “Special-Diet-Friendly” Holiday Dinner

December 14, 2015


It’s the most wonderful time of the year! Time for family dinners and dinner parties! When it comes to these special meals, in addition to setting my holiday table with festive decor, I’m also considering how I can make food that I can enjoy with everyone else this holiday season, even with my dietary restrictions. It can be hard to know what to make when “the classics” are all full of butter, cream, eggs, and breadcrumbs. Here are a few of my personal suggestions for hosting a special-diet-friendly holiday dinner! 

Christmas Tablescape |

Before we get into the side dishes, we need to talk about the tablescape. If you’re hosting Christmas dinner, brunch or some kind of get-together over the holidays, setting your table to match your meal is a must! By the time I get my menu organized and food prepped I barely have time to think about creating a fancy tablescape. It needs to be simple and reflect my minimalist tendencies. My white linen table runner and vintage brass candle holders always lay the foundation. I start with them and add a few simple pieces to “jazz it up.” To bring a little the wintery outdoors in, I decided to go with dove grey linen napkins and layer they beneath small bunches of greenery. I included a small twig, holly and winter greens and tied it in a bow with off-white cotton ribbon. You can snip greens from a forest walk or your backyard or pick up a small variety bouquet for less than $12 at a flower shop, the grocery store or even Costco!  I used the same twigs from the mini bouquets to weave between the brass candle holders to create a simple centrepiece. Simple, easy and incredibly affordable! 

Christmas Decor - Dining Room Tablescape |

These dove grey linen napkins by Lost in Linen have me seriously swooning! They are the most beautiful cool colour and feel luxurious, modern and rustic all at the same time! I can’t wait to use them again and again and again. I highly recommend adding a set of good quality linens to your tablescape and the quality of Lost in Linen is among the best! You can find these napkins, in this dove grey and other gorgeous colours, here


White and Grey Linens, Gold Cutlery |

These animal magnets serve double duty in our home! I use them to hold up notes and pictures on my magnetic board and fridge, but they also make perfect placecard holders for your dinner party! Clark used his pen skills to write out our guests names and we stood them upright at the back of each place setting. I thought these woodland animals would be perfect for the holiday season! You can also find safari animals, dinosaurs and tons of other animals! You can find them in almost any colour, here.  

Gold Animal Magnet Placecard holders |

Now for the holiday side dishes! I have a few vegan and gluten free options for your holiday meal! Vegan doesn’t just mean there’s no meat; it means there are no animal products at all. Since I can’t eat dairy or eggs, I find the best way to search for new recipes is to simply identify myself as vegan. So, if you have someone who is dairy-free or egg-free, these recipes will work for them!

I’m confident you can create an outstanding holiday meal that is special-diet-friendly by adding a few side dishes to your existing turkey or ham! 

These are my tops pics for a special-diet-friendly holiday dinner: 

Roasted Cauliflower & Chestnut Stuffing {Gluten-free & Vegan}

This stuffing alternative has all the flavours you’d expect from a traditional stuffing recipe and the chestnuts even add in a “meaty” texture. So good! I made this recipe for our last holiday themed dinner party and my friend, who has tried a plethora of my “special” food commented, “This is my favourite thing you’ve made to date!” Win! You can find the recipe here. 

Vegan and Gluten-Free Roasted Cauliflower Chestnut Stuffing Recipe

Sweet Potato Casserole {Gluten-Free & Vegan}

I made this casserole for Christmas last year, and my sister, who doesn’t have any dietary restrictions at all, just messaged me asking for the recipe. It’s that good. My brother in law downed the leftovers the next day! That’s when you know you’ve found a winner, it’s even first pic on day 2. You can’t go wrong with this one! Find the recipe here

Sweet Potato casserole

Pomegranate Cranberry Sauce {Refined Sugar-Free, Vegan, Gluten-free}

I’ve never been a huge fan of cranberry sauce. At least I didn’t think I was. That’s because my whole life I thought cranberry sauce came from a can; I had no idea how delicious it can taste when you make it from scratch. And it’s extremely easy to make!  We love this pomegranate cranberry sauce with hints of orange! You can find the recipe here

pomegranate cranberry sauce8

Quinoa, Fennel and Pomegranate Salad {Gluten-free, Vegan}

This salad add ls a punch of proteins for non-meat-eaters but is a nice bright salad for the rest of your dinner party as well. And, if you’re making the pommeganate cranberry sauce, here’s a hint of flavour repeated with the pomegranates! You can find the recipe here

Quinoa Fennel and Pomegranate Salad

Roasted Carrots with Green Tahini Sauce {Gluten-Free, Vegan}

I am guilty of using tahini sauce to make creamy sauces on the regular. I love the nutty flavour and it’s a great way to get that creamy consistency without the use of dairy. I also love roasted carrots! You can find the recipe here. 

roasted carrots with green tahini sauce

These are a few of my go-to sides! I’d love to hear what you make to ensure all your loved ones can eat! 



December 8, 2015


If you stop and think about it for too long, the world seems pretty dark. Thousands of people are battling cancer and other life-altering diseases. Innocent people are grieving loses from sickness, war and terrorism. It seems like more and more people are living through the pain of broken relationships, rejection and abandonment. While we may be fully immersed in the “the most wonderful time of the year,” we are constantly reminded that the holidays are really difficult for some people. It doesn’t matter how jolly St. Nick is, or how loud you blast Deck the Halls, the world just feels really, really broken. Maybe because it is. 

There is Hope - Free Tech Download |

But here’s what I love about Christmas: There is hope. 

Christmas isn’t just about the gifts, the lights and families coming together. It’s far more than sleigh bells and happy elves. Christmas it about hope. Hope is not just wishful thinking or a fleeting thought that maybe, just maybe, things will change; It’s a confidence in something immovable, unshakable, and unchanging. It’s the unwavering belief that because God recognized that the world was broken, He sent His boy into the world so that we could hold onto the hope that this little baby, Jesus, would change the course of history and offer us a solution from the brokenness and pain.

There is Hope - Free Tech Download |

Even when everything else in my life feels unstable and out of control, I know that hope is the anchor of my soul. It’s my hope in who Jesus is and what I know He came to this earth to do that keep me grounded. 

I choose to believe that the world can change; that sickness can be healed and terrorism can be no more. But even if things don’t change;  if innocent people continue to die and sickness continues to destroy my body, I will not be shaken. I will continue to place my hope in a God who has proven himself trustworthy again, and again. 

There is Hope - Free Download |

There is hope, and I choose to anchor myself to that hope, so that when the storms come my way, I will not be moved. It’s in this hope that I find joy, peace, and real life. It’s through this hope that I understand love. It’s this hope that gives me the strength to keep going. 

Whatever your story is this year; Wherever you find yourself; There is hope and His name is Jesus. 

You can download this free THERE IS HOPE graphic right here:


Our Favourite Christmas Traditions

December 5, 2015


Over the past few years, Clark and I have been establishing our own Christmas traditions as a family. We really wanted Christmas to reflect who were as a couple; a day full of joy, love, comfort and absolutely no-stress. Our traditions are simple, but here’s a few things we do to make the day reflect us!

Christmas morning traditions

Christmas Eve Gifts

As a kid my family didn’t open any gifts on Christmas Eve, and Clark received the classic PJ’s as a kid. Since we’re not really pyjama people, we decided that on Christmas Eve we would get each other a “comfy outfit” we could wear as we lounged together the next day. It’s become one of my favourite things on Christmas morning to roll out of bed and throw on my comfy outfit for the day. It’s no secret that right now I’m loving these crew neck sweaters by Province of Canada! They just introduced a few new designs and I currently have my eyes on this oneThey’ve also got these awesome wool socks, which instantly bring the coziness! You can’t go wrong with them! You find the sweater from this pic here, and the socks here

Comfy Christmas Mornings with Province of Canada

Stockings in Bed

It’s really important to us to take time to just be together on Christmas morning. On Christmas Eve, we stuff our stockings and put them at the foot of the bed so when the morning comes, we can reach down and grab our stockings and open them in bed together. Stockings are my favourite part of the day.

Part of our stocking is a thoughtful card we select and take time to write it for one another. We consider our stockings a major part of our gift giving and spend time and money on making them awesome. I love see the little things Clark picks out for me, and I love finding little things for him! It’s become a great connecting point for us!

Canada Hockey Card

This is the card I’m putting in his stocking this year (Clark, if you see, act surprised). You can find it here if you want to grab one for your favourite somebody!

Christmas Traditions

Warm Breakfast

After we’ve finished unpacking our stockings we head to the kitchen and take our time making coffee, tea, and a warm breakfast we can sit down and enjoy together. We’ll either make homemade waffles, or an oatmeal bake, but it allows us to relax and enjoy each other before we even touch the gifts beneath the tree. 

More than the turkey dinner or the presents under the tree, I’ve come to appreciate the quiet moments we share together before the day really begins. 

Wool Socks

I absolutely cherish the stress-free moments when we’re not rushing to be somewhere or get something done. Christmas for us is about being together without a schedule or an agenda and I love it!

What are some of your traditions that help to bring joy and rest to you and your fam?


December 2, 2015


Every year we have kids to buy for, and we’re always trying to find cute, unique gifts for the little nuggets in our lives! When their parents are cool, there is so much more pressure to find the best gifts for their kids. Here’s a few of my favourite Canadian gifts for kids with cool parents:

Gifts for Kids With Cool Parents

Sock Bear by Amber Vroom {Georgetown, Ontario}

You need to check out The Sculpted Sock Shop by Amber Vroom. Every single one of her sock animals is packed with personality. Every single time I see one of her creations show up on my instagram feed, it brings an instant smile to my face. You can find this bear, and all of Amber’s other adorable sock animals, here

Sock Bear

Geo Heart Sweater by Modern Fort {Vancouver, British Columbia}

If you’re someone who likes to support a great cause, you must check out the Modern Fort. Each month, Modern Fort runs a campaign and features an organization, or project, that has been making a difference in the community. Products purchased during the campaign will help raise funds and awareness towards the featured cause for the month. You can buy this sweater here, but make sure to check out the other items in the shop! 

Processed with VSCOcam with n1 preset

Wild Teepee {Vancouver, BC}

I would have loved one of these teepees as a kid! How fun to have your own personal “fort” to hang out in! These modern children’s teepee’s add a fun element to any room and can be customized to suit your needs and decor! You can find these teepees right here

wild teepees

Baby Care Essentials by Carriage 44 {Victoria, BC}

This gift set of baby care essentials includes chamomile infused olive oil baby soap, pure, unrefined baby shea butter with calendula infused sweet almond oil and unscented baby salve to sooth owies, irritated skin and diaper rash. If you know a family who prefers the best care products, these made by hand products, scented with essential oils may be the perfect gift! You can find them here.

Carriage 44

Black Leather Desert Boots by Ullaviggo {Winnipeg, Manitoba}

I adore these little baby boots! Honestly, I could buy them in every colour! Ullaviggo also has ridiculously hip sandals if you ‘re looking for a gift for an ultra-cool toddler. I love them! You can buy these adorable little shoes here.

Leather boots

Mini Em Hat {Toronto, Ontario}

A cute hat with a removable pompom? I don’t think I need to say much more than that. I love this bear print and this fuzzy pompom! You can buy this hat here

MiniEm Hat

Lovie Swaddle Blanket {Edmonton, Alberta}

These swaddle blankets make the most perfect gift! They come in gorgeous colours and have a serious cool factor. I love neutral colours, but the pink tones have me wishing I had a baby girl to buy for! You can’t go wrong with these! You can find this swaddle blanket here

Lovie Swaddle

Plaid Herschel Backpack {British Columbia}

Is there anything cuter than a toddler carrying a little Herschel backpack? These backpacks are practical and adorable. If plaid isn’t your vibe, there are tons of other colour options! You can find this bag here

Herschel Backpack

Children’s Books by Nicholas Oldland 

If you love to give the gift of reading, these cute animal-themed books, by Canadian author, Nicholas Oldland, are a great option! You can find them here and here

up the creek bookwalk on the wild side book

Hope this helps you impress the kids, and parents, in your life this Christmas! Only 23 days to go!

GIFTS TO KEEP COZY – A Holiday Gift Guide For That Person Who’s Always Cold

December 1, 2015


The three things I hate more than anything: the smell of hockey, the devil, and being cold. Being cold makes me instantly grouchy, so if I’m going to get through the cold of winter with at least a half smile on my face, I need to keep warm! Today I’m sharing some of my personal favourites, a few suggestions for gifts to keep cozy this winter!

Gifts for Keeping Cozy

Province of Canada Lightweight Crewneck Sweater {Ontario}

Here I go again, expressing my love for one of my new favourite Canadian lifestyle brands, Province of Canada. This is my new go-to sweatshirt. I love how it fits; I love how it feels; and I love how I can express my love for Canada while still looking cool. Win. Win. Win. I’m pretty small, but the XS fits me perfectly. You can get this sweater here

Province of Canada Black Sweater

Black XOXO Mug by G Ceramic Co {Vancouver, BC}

I wish I could walk around all day long with my hands wrapped around a mug of hot tea. This mug is perfect. I love the colour, the gold detail and the lovely little XOXO message. Such a sweet gift for anyone who deserves your hugs and kisses. And just to make you seem like you really went above and beyond, ya, those letters are real 18K gold. You can find this mug here. 

GCeramicco mug

Noul Scarf {Vancouver, British Columbia}

A scarf is a great, safe gift for Christmas. You can’t mess up the size and every woman (who does not suffer hot flashes from pregnancy or menopause) wears one. I love this thick black and white scarf. It can pair with almost anything and will keep her cozy all winter! You can find this scarf here.

Noul Scarf 

Slouchy Hat by West Company {Grande Prairie, Alberta}

My college roommate and one of my most cherished friends, Heather, is the maker behind these warm slouchy toques. She is one of the most beautiful people I know and makes the most lovely knit items! You can find this hat here

West Company Slouchy Hat

Sorel Out N About Leather Boot {Kitchener, Ontario}

Warm shoes are a must for me if I’m going to spend any time outside! What better to keep my toes warm than the classic Canadian brand, Sorel. The company was founded in Kitchener, Ontario in 1962 and has since become one leading winter boot companies around the world. They are functionally warm and water proof, but you don’t have to sacrifice style to keep your toes dry and warm! You can find these ones here.

Sorel Boots

Manitobah Mocassins {Winnipeg Manitoba}

Is there anything more cozy on your feet in the winter than a pair of fleece-lined moccasins? Maybe this is the grandma in me coming out, but I love a good pair of slippers!  You can find them here

Manitobah Moccasins

Woodlot Candle {Vancouver, British Columbia}

Clearly I’m a woodlot fan! I’ve already talked about them a couple times this holiday season! (Gifts for Cooler-Than-Average Guys here and Gifts for the Spa Lover here) These candles are a worthwhile investment as they burn for 60 hours! You can find them here


Wool Striped Socks – Province of Canada {Ontario}

Nothing says warmth and comfort in the winter like a pair of wool socks. They are perfect for weekend lounging around the house, or tucked inside your Sorel boots. You can find these ones here

Wool Socks

Hudson Bay Caribou Throw Blanket 

This blanket sits folded on the edge of the couch in our living room. Nothing says “I’m Canadian” like a 100% wool Hudson Bay blanket! This isn’t just another throw, it’s a keepsake. We inherited a vintage classic Hudson Bay point blanket from Clark’s grandparents, a gift they received for their wedding more than 60 years ago! These blankets will last for years! You can find this white one here

Hudson Bay Caribou throw

These are my best of Canada picks of gifts to keep cozy this winter! Let me know if I’m missing something I need!