Summer Snacking with Bite Snacks

Summer snack idea cricket protein bars

Summer holidays = no more packing lunches, but it does mean we need to keep a cupboard full of snacks. Whether we’re at home or out for the day, I try to keep stocked with healthy, convenient snacks the kids love. Earlier this year I was introduced to Bite Snacks by my trainer, Erin, and as someone who knows her way around health and fitness, I figured if she thought these bars were worth trying, so did I. One catch: they’re made with cricket protein!

These protein bars are a great healthy snack option for Summer

…So what does that mean? It means that each bar is packed with protein from a sustainable, nutritious source from right here in Canada that is eco-friendly and easy to digest: you got it, crickets. Now before you start wondering about the taste and texture of cricket, let me put you at ease. Because the cricket protein is ground up and blended into the bars alongside the other tasty ingredients, you’d never know there was anything different about these protein bars. Proof? My kids love them. 

These bars come in 3 flavours: Jiminy Ginger, Peanut Better, and Chocolate Chirp. Our family tried the variety box so we could compare the flavours, and the Chocolate Chirp and Peanut Better came out the winners. Anytime I can add in another healthy snack into the mix, especially during the Summer months when we’re on the go a lot of the time, I’m happy. These bars are like a cross between a granola bar and protein bar, full of flavour and other tasty ingredients like nuts, dates, and oats- anytime the kids see one they ask to have one, so I feel like we’ve found a winner in the snack department.

Healthy + Sustainable = Win Win!

If you’re looking for a healthy snack for on-the-go and are conscious of where the ingredients in your food come from, Bite Snacks are a great option. Another thing I learned while trying these bars out with the family is that cricket protein is an eco-friendly and sustainable protein option, requiring far fewer resources than other protein sources. For example, cricket protein requires 200x less water to produce, greenhouse gas emissions are 100x lower, and 12x less feed than what is required to produce beef. Now you know! 😉

Even though the thought of eating crickets may not jump out at you, Bite Snacks make cricket protein more appetizing by serving it up in their yummy bars and protein powders. Erin (my trainer over on Muscles and Mommies) used their protein powder to make some delicious protein- packed pancakes and they were a hit with her kids and mine- perfect for make-ahead snacks/ breakfasts. You can find her recipe for Gluten-Free Protein Pancakes here if you want to give it a try. 

Summer snack idea cricket protein bars  Summer snack idea cricket protein bars  Summer snack idea cricket protein bars Summer snack idea cricket protein bars Summer snack idea cricket protein bars

More Good Stuff to know about Bite Snacks

-gluten free

-non-GMO

-Dairy-free

-6G of protein in each bar

-great source of fibre and iron

-made from a sustainable protein source

About Bite Snacks

Bite Snacks provide cricket protein in the form of protein bars and powder with no added fillers or preservatives, using only organic and natural ingredients. You can purchase Bite Snacks products on their website and on Amazon. To learn more visit the Bite Snacks website and find them on social media: Instagram | Facebook

Disclosure: I received product and compensation in exchange for my honest review. All opinions are my own.

Heading Into the Holiday Season with Botanica Health + Recipe

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding

How do you maintain your wellness routine and keep yourself healthy this time of year? I’m excited to be teaming up again with Botanica Health heading into the holiday season with some ideas to help you stay calm and relaxed while enjoying something warm to unwind with at the end of the day. We all know eggnog is a hit this time of year, but if you’re looking for something warm and not loaded with sugar I’ve got two ideas you might want to try (plus a recipe!).

Botanica Health has just released two new products in time for those evenings you want to stay cozy indoors (or go for a Winter walk), and unwind at the end of the day: Reishi Hot Chocolate and Chocolate Turmeric Golden Mylk. Both are modern takes on traditional beverages (reishi mushrooms are believed to help the body relax and support a healthy stress response, while turmeric is a popular ingredient in ayurvedic medicine for its anti-inflammatory properties). With the added decadence of chocolate, they’re the perfect drink for when you want to enjoy something warm and comforting without being loaded with sugar and artificial additives (bonus points for actually being good for you!).

Made in small batches and free from artificial ingredients and fillers both the Reishi Hot Chocolate and Chocolate Turmeric Golden Mylk are vegan, certified organic, dairy-free, gluten-free, sugar-free, stevia-free, and non-GMO. 

The Reishi Hot Chocolate is my favourite  of the two, and I decided to give it a try in a recipe: reishi chocolate chia pudding, a new take on this chia parfait recipe. I like that chia pudding is a tasty, healthy snack full of nutrients and how simple it is to make. Whether you enjoy the Reishi Hot Chocolate Mix to make a warm drink on a cold day, or to add into a snack like this one, it’s a refreshing option worth a try. See below for the recipe!

Reishi Hot Chocolate Chia Pudding

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding

Ingredients

2 cups milk (regular, coconut, or pick your favourite)

1/4 cup chia seeds

2 tbsp Reishi Hot Chocolate Mix

1 tsp vanilla extract (optional)

Vanilla Greek yogurt (optional)

Cinnamon or cocoa nibs for garnish

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding

Directions

1. In a jug, mix the Reishi Hot Chocolate Mix until combined, followed by the chia seeds

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding

2.Cover for half an hour or overnight 

3.When ready, pour the chia seed mix into mason jars and top with cinnamon or cocoa nib shavings

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding

4.For an extra dose of protein, layer the chocolate chia pudding with Greek yogurt

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding  Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding    Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding  Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding  Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding  Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding  

Want to try this recipe? Save it for later!

Botanica Reishi chocolate chia pudding

More Info

Reishi Hot Chocolate

  • 1500mg of Reishi per serving, which is considered a therapeutic dosage (what you would get if you were to take a capsule or tincture of Reishi mushroom)
  • the whole mushroom is used (mycelium and fruiting body) to capture all the benefits of the mushroom
  • sourced from the Pacific Northwest of the USA
  • tested for herbicides, pesticides, and heavy metals to ensure purity
  • sweetened with dates and monk fruit as natural sweeteners (no added sugars)

Chocolate Turmeric Golden Mylk

  • 1000mg of Turmeric per serving
  • made with the same quality ingredients as the original Turmeric Golden Mylk, but with the added decadence of chocolate
  • sweetened with dates and monk fruit as natural sweeteners (no added sugars)

Check out my other post with Botanica Health here!

Visit Botanica online: Website | Instagram | Facebook 

 Available in health food stores and on Amazon
 
Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.
 
 

Bedroom Makeover: Finding a New Bed with Wayfair Canada

Grey upholstered bed from Wayfair Canada

For the past few months we’ve been updating our bedroom and I’m really excited for the latest addition: the bed! We found a new one on Wayfair Canada and are loving it. I’ve been sharing about the process since we started it last Fall, including painting and adding wall decals (which made such a difference right there alone- scroll to the bottom of this post for photos of the process along the way) and there are just a few finishing touches left. In some ways it’s great to have those weekend warrior projects that you finish all at once, but sometimes it’s just not doable: not enough time/ budget/ keeping the kids occupied while you try to work, etc., so we’ve been working away as we’ve had the time and budget to do so. My friend told me that there are some Cheap deals on paydaydeals.com.au. Might be a good idea for me to check those out! View Post

Family Life: Staying Organized with Picniic

Picniic App Review 1

Hands up who needs all the help they can get staying organized/ remembering all the things? Most days there’s a to- do list a mile long that’s never ending and usually something gets forgotten. Sound familiar? My survival skill is to make lists. And sometimes lists of lists. Usually that way I can at least keep track of everything even if it doesn’t all get done (and let’s face it, it pretty much never does 😉 ). 

There’s always lots to remember and keep track of and with school around the corner there’s about to be more to remember. First things to do is make sure we are stocked up on all the necessary stationery from somewhere like Office Monster. With Ari starting preschool in the Fall I’ll take all the help I can get when it comes to getting more organized and keep track of the to- dos. Goodness me there are a lot of to-dos! No wonder people feel so overwhelmed and stressed out at this time of year. For the past few weeks I’ve been trying out Picniic, a family organizer app that helps you keep track of things like activities, meal planning/ groceries, and items on your to- do list, with notifications popping up on your phone as things come up. All members of the family can download the app and link to the same account so everyone can stay updated and see the same info, add to the calendar and grocery list, and keep track of upcoming special dates such as birthdays and anniversaries. 

Picniic App Review 2

  Picniic App Review 3

Picniic App Review 4

Picniic App Review 5

August is a busy month- it feels busier than usual this year- and staying organized/ keeping track of what’s coming up helps me keep calm when I look at what needs to get done each day. Especially on days that feel overwhelmingly busy, reminding myself to prioritize, focus on one thing at a time, and check things off as I go makes the day go smoother. Even if I don’t get through everything on the list by the end of the day, knowing I worked my way through and checked off the most important things first means that I stress less about what didn’t get done.

With kids it can be tough to get through everything that needs to get done in a day- and even to remember everything you’re trying to get done- and Picniic helps not only you, but everyone in the family stay organized. There have been days where I make a mental note of something and remember later that I needed to remember something, but can’t remember what it is that I needed to remember! With Picniic I can quickly make a note in my phone so I can come back to it later and remind myself; I can then make a note in the app’s calendar or create a new list/ add an item to an existing one to help me keep track. 

Picniic App To- Do Screenshot Picniic App To- Do Screenshot 2 Picniic App Calendar Screenshot

Hands down my favourite/ most- used features of the app are the lists and calendar, but I’m looking forward to using the meal planning tool more as well. Picniic is quick to set up/ simple to use,  and everything is in one place and easily accessible which I appreciate.

For families with young kids it’s a great tool to help us parents stay on the same page (even if your hubby doesn’t add to it, he can see what’s coming up on the calendar, etc) and with older kids I can see how this app would be a useful tool for everyone in the family: older kids can enter their own info/ see what’s on the family calendar, as well as add notes for upcoming activities, events, and due dates for school work. Picniic can be used on a phone, tablet, and computer, making it an accessible organization tool wherever you and members of the family are.

Here’s how the app appears on a phone & computer:

Picniic App Screenshot

Picniic App We Screenshot

The app is also launching a new feature, Pia, today to help personalize the app for your family and make recommendations based on usage so families can get the most out of the app and it’s features (learn more about Pia below). If you’re trying to find simple ways to stay organized, definitely check out Picniic to help keep your family on top of everything. 

Picniic Features

  • Calendar- day/ week/ month options to keep track of upcoming events and important dates
  • To- Do & Lists- create to- do lists and lists by title/ category to stay organized
  • Shopping List- add recipe ingredients and items as you’re running low
  • Info Locker- include info for key contacts like doctors, medical info such as insurance provider, and household info like wifi network and password
  • Special Events- store important dates such as birthdays and anniversaries
  • Meal Planner- organize meals for the week ahead, including ingredients and recipes
  • Recipes- search online or add your own custom recipes
  • Family Locator- see where members of the family are near or far

About

Picniic is an app designed to help families be more organized. It acts as a personal assistant for use by the entire family on mobile, web, and tablet. Picniic has features including family member location tracking, assigned to- dos and chores, meal planners, information lockers for all your important records, and more. It’s easy for families to not be on the same page with information spread through multiple family members and locations, and slipping through the cracks. Picniic family assistant bridges this gap, and helps everyone stay connected. 

Launching on August 8th, Picniic is introducing it’s latest feature, PIA, an intelligent persona similar to Siri. PIA will help families connect with Picniic further and making recommendations based on how they use the app. PIA will help families be proactive by reaching out with suggestions to keep them organized and prepared.

Learn more about Picniic and download it here. Find the app on Instagram: @picniic

In this post:

Photo credit: Will Petrunia

Dress: Tobi

Disclosure: I was provided compensation for this review. All opinions are honest and my own.

 

 

House Box Review {+ Giveaway}

There are some great products for the home out there, but one thing I’m finding is that the products I love and use the most aren’t usually the ones you find in big box stores. They’re from smaller companies, many of them only available through small shops and online. Products such as cleaners (when I don’t make them myself), personal products like lotions, and even things like tea and coffee are all examples of products that I prefer to buy from smaller brands instead of the big multi- national ones. The quality alone sets them apart, and I like trying out options that are unique- especially if it also means supporting a small business while doing so.
For the past month I’ve been testing out a variety of items from House Box, a subscription company that delivers an assortment of products for the home every two months. It’s a great way to try out brands that are harder to find or unavailable at big retailers, and if you find a product (or a few) that you love, you can order full- size products through the House Box website. I’m sharing below about the products included in the House Box I received, plus see the end of the post to learn how you can enter to win a 6- month subscription (3 boxes every 2 months). 
Here’s what was in the House Box I received:
Lunatec Odour Free Dishcloth– Scrubbing dishcloths that are odour- free and hold less bacteria than sponges or cotton dishcloths. Simply rinse to remove food debris.
loved this dishcloth- it’s really a combo between a cloth and a scouring pad. It worked great to scrub clean a variety of surfaces (including a very messy counter after baking!) and because it’s thin and flexible it could fit into tight spaces to scrub off caked- on messes. I’ve popped it into the dishwasher after particularly messy clean ups and it came out good as new. Rinsing under warm water works well after regular wipe- downs. 
Essential 8 All Purpose Cleaner- Organic nontoxic all- purpose cleaner made with pure citrus essential oils. Safe and gentle to use on surfaces where kids will eat, play etc and is safe for cleaning wood, countertops, leather, upholstery, tile, and plastic. It can also be used as a car wash and pre- treatment for laundry stains.
This got use a lot and I loved that I could use it anywhere and everywhere without worrying about the kids touching or eating off of the surfaces I cleaned with it. Added bonus: it has a lovely fresh citrusy- scent thanks to the essential oils.
Tupperware Citrus Peeler- A classic tool to help peel citrus easily.
This is a neat little gadget that doesn’t take up much drawer space and is great when you need zest for recipes.
Great Canadian Soap Co Healing Butter- Made with Lavender and Tea Tree essential oils, which are known to have healing properties for a variety of things from cuts and burns to insect bites and more. Perfect to have on hand in the kitchen, a first aid kit, or in the diaper bag.
I love that this is a natural option to sooth skin. I used it on a cut I got from a kitchen knife and it worked well; then I tried in on the kids. Because they have more delicate skin I wanted to try it on myself first and once I knew it was good to go I put some on a scrape Ari had and even used it to help clear up some diaper rash! Each time it did a great job and I’ve now got it tucked in the diaper bag for on- the- go needs (yay for multi- purpose products!).
Tea Pigs Tea- Made with high- quality ingredients, there were two varieties included in my House Box: Every Day Brew, a blend of  3 black teas, Assam, Ceylon, and Rwandan, for a tasty caffeine boost, and Peppermint Leaves, made with whole peppermint leaves for a strong and refreshing herbal option. 
I’m a tea lover, and I enjoyed trying these. I was even kind enough to share some of the mint tea with Ari (peppermint is great for soothing soar tummies and promoting healthy digestive systems) and she loved it as much as I did. This is s nice way to try different varieties of tea without committing to a whole box; it was lovely enjoying them while I worked and kicked up my feet during nap time.

And now about that giveaway!
Like I mentioned at the beginning of the post, House Box is giving away a 6- month/ 3 box subscription to one lovely reader. See all the ways you can enter below, good luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

About House Box 
House Box is a subscription company that delivers a selection of products for the home right to your door. Boxes are delivered every two months with a variety of subscription options available. Gifting options are also available.
To learn more about House Box & to start a subscription visit their website. You can also find them on social media: Instagram | Facebook | Twitter
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