Altitude Sports Puddle

These Boots Are Made For… Everything, Apparently!

Kids are funny creatures. They are completely opposite from us grown-ups in that they don’t seem to care about things such as fashion, common sense or practicality. Okay, they are unlike ‘most’ of us grown-ups…

My son recently received new Bogs rubber boots from Altitude Sports and I was very excited about it. There’s something special about watching a child splash through puddles in rubber boots. It helps remind us of the freedom we once enjoyed as children to do whatever we pleased. The smiles on their faces as they thrash their way through the rain are enough to tell a thousands stories.

As it turns out, what I saw as a simple and practical pair of puddle jumpers meant something completely different to my son. Sure, he still loves splashing in puddles with them but much like a new pair of running shoes, his new boots came everywhere with us! Without further ado, here is my list, in no particular order, of the strangest things my son used his new rubber boots for.

Baseball Practice

Altitude Sports Baseball

*Jose Bautista also plays in rubber boots! (*Not true)

Street Hockey

Altitude Sports Hockey

Everyone knows rubber boots are best for running…

Jumping on the Bed

Altitude Sports Bed Jump

Are my kids living the dream, or what?

Soccer

Altitude Sports Soccer

Actually the rubber boots are good for unleashing crazy kicks in this case.

As you can see, my children are just as weird as yours and I couldn’t be happier about it. Having structure is cool but sometimes you just need to throw on a pair of rubber boots and jump on a bed, am I right? Please tell me your kids do this kind of stuff too…

I should also mention that Altitude Sports is a 100% Canadian company and my transactions with them have all been amazing. Their discount website, The Last Hunt, has some incredible deals from brands like Salomon and The North Face and you should definitely check it out if you don’t mind wearing the previous season’s gear.

Don’t forget to visit Altitude Sports at their Facebook and Twitter pages to say hello and to let them know that you support a solid Canadian company!

Quaker Chewy Super Grains

Why Didn’t You Eat Your Lunch??

We have asked our children this question on an almost daily basis for this entire school year. I have no idea what it is about the lunches we are packing that repulses the children so much but it seems the one thing we can count on in our house is a less than half eaten lunch when they get home from school.

When prompted about their decisions to neglect their lunches we have received a number of different, yet equally unsatisfying answers, that range from “They didn’t give us enough time!!” to the half-mumbled version of “I don’t know” that sounds kind of like Tarzan’s roar if he were to do it quietly and curtly. It is a frustrating daily exercise that we have tried to fix in a number of ways but still seem to be losing the battle.

Much like the rest of you, we have very active kids who compete in multiple sports and activities. I’m actually at a loss on how to explain to them that they need this food in order to fuel themselves throughout the day, as everything we have tried seems to go in one ear and out the other. Actually, if you guys have any tips, please feel free to share them in the comments because I am all ears! All this said, we have found a few items that the kids will eat no matter how little time their dictators, oops, I mean teachers give them.

The latest such items are the new Quaker Chewy® Super Grains granola bars, which were sent to us by Quaker for the kids to try out. In the last week since we have been sending them in the kids lunches, they are the only empty compartment in the lunch bags when they return home and the kids would eat them all in one sitting if I left them out in the open. The things I didn’t tell the kids are the reasons why I am happy they are eating them. The Quaker Chewy® Super Grains granola bars are made in a peanut-free facility and combine super grains like whole grain oats, brown rice, whole wheat, quinoa, sorghum, and barley to deliver 8 g of whole grains, 5 g of protein and 2 g of fibre. Remember the mention of fuel earlier? This is at least some of the fuel they will need to get through their afternoon activities.

Quaker Chewy Super Grains Kids

I will admit that the lunch time battle is far from over but I will definitely take these small victories as they come. I mean, my kids are enjoying both the Oats & Chocolate and Oats & Honey flavours of the Quaker Chewy® Super Grains granola bars. That’s a win in itself for my picky eaters and we are now one step closer to an empty lunchbox at the end of the day. Now if only we could force them to eat their fruit…

How about you? Do you have picky lunch eaters? How do you deal with it? No, seriously, please help!

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in this program but I did in fact have to hide the granola bars because my son is a granola monster who would hide in his room and eat them all in 2 minutes…

Scotts Miracle-Gro

The Lawn Struggle Is Real – Scotts Miracle-Gro To The Rescue!

Let me set the scene. Your child goes over to a friend’s house and comes home gushing about how much fun they had playing on the lawn and then having a picnic. Your child then asks if they can invite a friend over to do the same at your house and you have to let them down because your lawn looks like a disaster site that is not welcoming to, you know, people of any kind.

To say I am lacking in the lawn maintenance skills department would be a gross understatement. I have never been able to figure out how to keep my lawn weed-free and growing the way my neighbours do and I’m getting tired from the struggle, so when I got the offer of help from the people at Scotts Miracle-Gro, I jumped at the chance!

As you can see from the above photo I have my work cut out for me but I have accepted the #ScottsWeedBGon Challenge and I’m hoping to finally create a lawn that we can use and be proud of as a family. I have already using the Scotts® Turf Builder® Green MAX™ Lawn Food as it gives my grass a deeper green within 3 days and also helps to provide the nutrients needed for a healthy lawn to develop strong roots that can help to crowd out weeds. As you can see I also have a lack of grass in certain areas, so I will be applying some Scotts® Turf Builder® Grass Seed in hopes of growing a lawn my kids will be happy to play on. Finally, the Scotts® EcoSense Weed B Gon 5L Ready-To-Use Spray with Wand Applicator will help kill my weeds without harming my lawn, and the battery powered applicator makes applying it a breeze!

Now, I’m not exactly sure what the dress code is for this type of work but I think this should just about cover it, right??

Scotts Gardening Gear

I don’t really want to do the challenge alone though, so I invite you to come along with me and I’ll even make it worth your while! Simply snap a photo of the weeds in your yard, post them to Instagram with the hashtag #ScottsWeedBGon and tag both myself (@CanadianDadBlog) and Scotts (@ScottsMiracleGroCanada) and I’ll be handing out some great coupons for some Scotts Weed B Gon!

In case that wasn’t enough for you, you can also head over to the @ScottsMiracleGroCanada Instagram page now until May 31st and enter to win a $250 IKEA gift card, plus a phone consultation with lawn & garden expert Frankie Flowers! Yeah, I know, you’re welcome!

Please follow along on my social channels as I share my #ScottsWeedBGon journey to a better lawn and don’t be afraid to visit the Scotts Facebook and Instagram channels for tips and inspiration for your next project!

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in this program.

Baseball Diamond

Baseball Season Is Upon Us

I’m struggling to express the joy I felt when our son let us know that he wanted to give baseball a shot this year. Having played ball for my entire youth and well into adulthood, I was excited to have the opportunity to help him on his way to baseball mediocrity as my father had done for me.

We are two weeks into the season and things seem to be going according to plan. The kids love kicking their feet around in the dirt, creating mini dust tornadoes and making it impossible for anyone to see what they are doing, as we did in our youth. Wrangling twelve 7 & 8-year-old boys and getting them all to pay attention at the same time is always a fun challenge but you learn to appreciate all of their individual quirks and mannerisms. That said, one of the many perks of volunteering to be on the coaching staff is that you can always keep your own child inline and paying attention!

True to the chaos that is parenting, right before the season started we realized that our son had no proper baseball equipment. Flashing back to my youth I can remember the excitement of my dad bringing me to Canadian Tire because I always new I was about to get some new gear. The only downside to shopping when I was a kid was that we were at the mercy of the stock on the store shelves. We live in a slightly different time now so I was excited to present my son with the new Canadian Tire WOW Guide so he could pick out the items he wanted and then I had them ordered right to our store.

Canadian Tire Baseball

Tell me this kid doesn’t look like a seasoned baseball player now! Through the Canadian Tire WOW Guide, we were able to score him a new Troy Tulowitzki glove, a Raptor baseball bat, a new Rawlings baseball, new cleats and an amazing Easton bag to carry it all in. I loved watching his face as he flipped through the WOW Guide and excitedly circled all the things he wanted. I obviously had to shave the list down as he circled about 6 pages worth of sports gear but it reminded me about the fun of going through catalogues when I was a kid.

I highly recommend that you grab the WOW Guide from your local Canadian Tire store or check it out at Canadian Tire’s website. The guide covers everything from lawn and garden and home décor to power tools and tires, plus you can use the Canadian Tire app to hover over the products you love in the WOW Guide to unlock dynamic digital extras like videos, how-to’s and DIYs. Well, what are you waiting for?!

Canadian Tire WOW Guide

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in this program, however I used that money to buy more baseball gear from Canadian Tire because I have no self control.

20160502_233019

A Star In The Making

“It goes by so fast”. Ask any parent something they wish they’d known before having kids and that quote will be in there every single time. It sounds cliché but it’s so very true. One minute you’re teaching them to skate and the next they are skating circles around you. My daughter is no exception to this rule. To put it bluntly, she’s amazing. Every new task she takes on she does it to the fullest of her ability. Can’t do a cartwheel at gymnastics? She’ll do 500 cartwheels in one week until she masters it. In the last two weeks her coaches in gymnastics, dance and figure skating have all come to us to say that our daughter should be in their competitive programs.

While my first reaction to this news was an indescribable sense of pride, the next was one of worry because even forgetting the costs of these programs, there is not enough time in the week for her to possibly compete in multiple competitive sports. I also struggle with the fact that at 6 years old, how much do we really want to put on her plate? When asked what she wanted to do our daughter didn’t hesitate as she made figure skating her top choice. Coming from a life of team sports, this is a whole new adventure for me. Private coaches, booking ice time and not being able to volunteer are all things I will have to get used to but I can’t wait to watch my little girl grow into a beautiful skater and I can guarantee tears the first time I see her doing a routine.

We had the chance to take our daughter to see the Investors Group Stars On Ice show this weekend so she could see what the payoff could be for all the hard work she’s about to put in. While we couldn’t get too many pictures due to the dark lighting during the show, I can assure you that she was dazzled by the skaters and especially the jumps! She may not know who Elvis Stojko, Tessa Virtue and Scott Moir or Joannie Rochette are but they definitely captured her attention and made her want to skate even more.

For my wife, who was also a figure skater as a child, having the opportunity to see Kurt Browning skate live for the first time was a dream come true. She posted a short video of Kurt’s performance on Facebook mentioning how exciting it was to watch him skate, and then got a message from a friend who was currently sitting next to Kurt on a plane heading out of Ottawa. The friend said that Kurt had just watched her whole video because it was a new routine and he’d never seen himself doing it yet. Then he shared this picture…

Kurt Browning

Kurt Browning giving my wife a thumbs up!

Needless to say, my wife hasn’t been this excited since the time Jann Arden called her on her birthday. It was a perfect way to cap off an amazing Stars On Ice show! After seeing the smiles on my two favourite ladies faces after the show it is impossible for me to not recommend that you check it out with your family. It is especially great if you have young figure skaters in your house. For more information on upcoming shows and tickets you can check out the Stars On Ice website. Oh, and Kurt, if you ever want to talk fatherhood, I’d be happy to conduct that interview (insert winky face here). I promise not to let my wife hijack the call…

About Investors Group Stars On Ice

Founded in 1986 by skating icon and Olympic Gold Medallist Scott Hamilton, the Stars on Ice Tour originated in the United States. In 1991, Stars on Ice began to tour Canada and has now played nearly 300 shows in the past 25 years. Past tour performers include Kurt Browning, Jamie Salé & David Pelletier, Kristi Yamaguchi and Elvis Stojko. Investors Group Stars on Ice presented by Lindt is produced by IMG, the global leader in sports, fashion and media. For more information about the tour, visit www.starsonice.ca. Keep in touch with Investors Group Stars on Ice presented by Lindt on Facebook: www.facebook.com/starsonice Instagram: www.instagram.com/starsonice, and on Twitter: twitter.com/starsonice.

Disclosure: My family was provided tickets to this event.

Mothers Day Mom

Best Gifts For Mother’s Day {Plus, Win A $100 Best Buy Card!}

It’s that time of year again where we husbands and children get a chance to celebrate the special mothers in our lives. That’s not to say we don’t celebrate them all year round but it’s so much fun taking the kids out to the store to pick out something special for mommy. This year our kids have decided that they have such a great mommy that they want to spend their own money to but a special gift for her. They have been saving up their allowance money for the last couple months and with a little help from daddy’s wallet have picked out something from Best Buy that we think mommy will really love.

We can’t reveal to you what we ended up buying for her but I am going to share some of the other items from Best Buy that ended up on our short list. Did I also buy something for myself for Mother’s Day? Perhaps, but nobody needs to know about that… Alright, here are a few of the items from Best Buy that the kids and I had to ponder. As we do, we started looking online and then narrowed down our choices before heading to the store. We’ll do the big reveal on Mother’s Day after mommy opens her gift!

Fitbit Alta Fitness Tracker

Fitbit Alta Fitness Tracker

Anyone who has tried out a Fitbit and competed against their friends knows how addicting it can be to try to one up each other. As each new Fitbit is released they look more like accessories and less like giant wrist bands. Pro-tip: A lot of people prefer wearing them on their ankles as opposed to their writs, so consider going for the larger band when you purchase.

You can check out all the Fitbit models at Best Buy by clicking here!!

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Kobo Glo HD Digital eBook Reader

Kobo Glo HD 6″ Digital eBook Reader with Touchscreen

If you have yet to experience the joys of eReading I highly recommend that you try it out. 4 million books at your fingertips can never be a bad thing, right? Also, think of all the free space on your bookshelves for your kids to put their toys all over…

Check out the Kobo Glo HD 6″ Digital eBook Reader with Touchscreen for yourself!
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Gaiam Yoga Essentials Bundle Gaiam Yoga Essentials Bundle

Although I have never personally attempted yoga, my wife has taken a liking to it but was lacking in proper equipment. This looks like the perfect starter kit for anyone looking to dip their toes in the yoga waters. I’m going to be honest and say that I’m not sure I could handle the pain that would follow yoga classes…

Here is the link for more information on the Gaiam Yoga Essentials Bundle!
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Samsung Galaxy Tab S2

Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 Android Tablet

As any good parenting manual will tell you, letting your kids play with your tablets, smartphones and computers is an excellent way to get 5 minutes of peace and quiet. Unfortunately what that means is there are plenty of times when these devices are not available to us as parents. That’s why we recently decided that the kids were ready to inherit our old tablets which means we get to shop for new ones!

The Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 pairs nicely with the Galaxy S7 phones we just bought, too!!
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Marathon LED Digital Alarm Clock with USB Charging Station

Marathon LED Digital Alarm Clock with USB Charging Station

One of my biggest complaints as an android device owner is the fact that there aren’t very many good options for nighttime docking whereas iPhone users have all kinds of cool devices. As soon as I saw this clock with charging station I ordered it from Best Buy online. No, this isn’t our Mother’s Day gift. I was a Mother’s Day for me. Dad.

Here are more details on the Marathon LED Digital Alarm Clock with USB Charging Station.
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Classic 10K Gold Heart Pendant & Earrings Set

Classic 10K Gold Heart Pendant & Earrings Set

What is it about kids and gift buying that for moms they instinctively want to buy them jewelry and for dads they go to the tie section? In any case, as soon as the kids saw this heart pendant and earring set, they both looked at each with excitement. Again, not what we went with but it is definitely in our saved folder for future gift purchasing!

If your wife or mother loves bling, maybe the Classic 10K Gold Heart Pendant & Earrings Set is for you!
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Giveaway!

To help you on your way to the best Mother’s Day ever I am giving away a $100 Best Buy gift card and will announce the winner on Mother’s Day! Just fill out as many of the Rafflecopter options below as you’d like and you’re in! Giveaway is open to residents of Canada, excluding Quebec and will be emailed to the winner once confirmed. Good Luck!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in the #BestMomBestBuy program.

Pizza Hut GPS Tracker

Introducing The Pizza Hut LIVE Nav GPS Tracker! {And Win $100 Gift Card}

So you’ve ordered your pizza and now the waiting game begins. Wouldn’t it be nice to be able to tell your guests, kids and stomach exactly when they can expect the pizza to arrive? Well, you’re in luck because Pizza Hut Canada just became the first pizza brand to introduce GPS tracking in Canada! The new Pizza Hut LIVE Nav is now available in select Ottawa restaurants and will roll out to additional locations in Canada this year. I could drone on about about it but this video does a way better job of explaining it than I could. Check it out!!

Yeah, I know. Awesome, right?! How easy are these steps?

1. Place your order online using a mobile phone, tablet or desktop computer.
2. Track it through a personalized link, step-by-step, from when the pizza is popped in the oven to when it’s on the road to its final destination.
3. Follow the driver as they’re en-route from the restaurant to your address.
4. Eat delicious Pizza Hut pizza!

Win A $100 Pizza Hut Gift Card!

As a way to let you test out the new Pizza Hut LIVE Nav system, I am giving away a $100 Pizza Hut gift card to one lucky reader! All you have to do is complete as many of the Rafflecopter entries as you feel comfortable with and I’ll notify the winner at the end of the contest! Good Luck and Happy Eating!!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I was compensated for this post

Canadian Tire WOW Guide

Prepare to be WOWed! {Plus, Win a $200 Canadian Tire Gift Card}

Remember the joy of grabbing a coffee, kicking back and flipping through your favourite store’s catalogue? Those days seem to have been replaced by the digital age, with most companies opting to focus more on online content and less on printed materials. I thought I was transitioning well to this change until I received Canadian Tire’s WOW Guide in the mail earlier this week.

Now I find myself taking on the role of the traditional male and carrying this folded catalogue around with me in my back pocket as if it were Marty McFly’s Almanac, so I can take breaks to look at power tools, yard equipment and baseball gear any time I want. Sometimes even, to my wife’s dismay, with a small grunt.

On top of that, with two birthdays in the coming weeks, both of my children were able to easily flip through the WOW Guide and circle some things they would like to receive. Everybody wins!

Canadian Tire WOW Guide Kids

What is the WOW Guide, you ask?

Being delivered to over 12 million homes, the WOW Guide is full of thousands of products, countless ideas, and pages of inspiration that will help you make the most of spring and summer 2016. The guide covers everything from everything from lawn and garden and home décor to power tools and tires.

There is great news for you techie types as well, as you can use the Canadian Tire app to hover over the products you love in the WOW Guide to unlock dynamic digital extras like videos, how-to’s and DIYs. Simply Download the free Canadian Tire app and Hover your phone over the digital extras sections to Discover videos, deals and more; be sure to look for your WOW Guide on your doorstep this week and visit canadiantire.ca/wow.

Win A $200 Canadian Tire Gift Card!

Ummm, Chris, I believe you mentioned something about a gift card??? That’s right, to celebrate the launch of the WOW Guide, Canadian Tire has given me a $200 gift card for me to pass along to one of you. All you have to do is complete as many of the Rafflecopter entries as you feel comfortable with and I’ll notify the winner at the end of the contest!

Good Luck and don’t forget to Download the free Canadian Tire app, Hover your phone over the product you like the guide and Discover more of what you love at Canadian Tire!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I was compensated for this post

Daredevil Netflix

Netflix For Dads ~ Daredevil Edition

There hasn’t been a show since Lost that has captured my attention as much as Netflix’s Daredevil series. I’ll preface this by saying that I am a huge fan of the superhero genre and watch all the various shows that have spawned recently. That said, there’s a huge difference between the shows on regular cable and the shows that Netflix produces and Daredevil has quickly become my favourite of that bunch.

While I thoroughly enjoyed the acting and story lines that season 1 of Daredevil offered, I have to say that the addition of The Punisher to season 2 really brought the show to a new level. Every scene that Frank Castle appeared in was so full of raw emotion and energy that I often found myself on the edge of my seat waiting to see what he was going to do next.

Keeping in mind that this is my favourite show at the moment, I did find the season as a whole was lacking something. The story wasn’t as interesting as it was with Wilson Fisk in season 1 and there were way too many fight scenes for my liking but the development and emotion of the main characters more than made up for any short comings in my mind. Also, bringing Fisk back for a couple episodes and setting up his potential return as Kingpin for season 3 literally had me smiling from ear to ear like a child.

Have you watched Daredevil yet? How did you feel about season 2?

I am a member of the Netflix Stream Team but all that means is that I watch a lot of Netflix. Too much Netflix, actually…

Harlem Globetrotters

Win A Family 4 Pack To See The Harlem Globetrotters! {Ottawa}

Anyone who’s been reading this blog long enough knows that my family has built a special bond with the Harlem Globetrotters. From playing Candy Land with them to having Zeus come to our house to shoot around with the neighbourhood kids, we love everything about the Globetrotters and the live show is the best!

Well, the world famous Harlem Globetrotters, who are celebrating 90 years of providing smiles, sportsmanship and service to millions of people worldwide, are bringing their unrivaled family show back to Ottawa’s Canadian Tire Centre on Sunday, April 10, at 3 p.m. and we hope you can join us for the show!

Special Promo Code just for you!

Click here and refer to promo code FAMFUN or visit the Canadian Tire Centre box office to save 25%^ on tickets to see the Harlem Globetrotters on Sunday, April 10.

Tickets start as low as $16 for this one-of-a-kind show that continues to thrill fans of all ages. To purchase courtside or VIP seats, please visit www.CapitalTickets.ca, call 613-599-FANS (3267) or visit the Canadian Tire Centre box office.

^This offer is not valid for courtside or VIP seats.

Win Your Way To The Show!

As mentioned above, I am giving away a family 4 pack of tickets to the show, which takes place April 10th at 3pm at the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa! All you have to do to enter is leave a comment below letting me know who you will bring to the show! I will draw a winner at 5pm on April 6th. Good luck!

I’ll leave you with a video of the time I challenged Buckets Blakes to a duel, and paid the price for it…

Congrats to our winner, Angelo M!