Schick #DriveFree Twitter Party

Join The #DriveFree Twitter Party on July 30th!

If you want to learn more about how you can Drive Free For A Year, you’ll want to join us for the #DriveFree Twitter Party on July 30th at 9pm ET! We’ll be talking about everything from family road trips to vehicle maintenance and you won’t want to miss out on the conversation or the amazing prizes we have in store for you.

Here are the party details and you can RSVP below!

Date: Thursday, July 30, 2015
Time: 9 to 10 pm EST
Hashtag: #DriveFree
Host: @CanadianDadBlog
Sponsor: @FreeYourSkinCA
Panelists: @PuzzlingPostDad, @ChancesMommy, @MMPerspectives, @CaseP
Prizes: Five(5) Schick Prize Packs ($100 Value)
Grand Prize: Schick Prize Pack incl. $150 Gift Card
Official Rules and Regulations

RSVP Here:

Barilla Cooking With Kids

Let Me Tell You A Secret About Picky Eaters

My kids hate food. Alright, that seems a little drastic. It seems as though my children dislike more food than they like. Any parent with a picky eater understands the frustration of slaving over a healthy family meal, only to have 50% of the people at the dinner table refuse to eat any of it. Stories such as, “It has green things in it” or “I like it but don’t want to eat it right now”, are mainstays in our house and it seemed as though all was lost, until recently, that is.

I think I may have discovered a loophole in the system and it happened while I was working on my last blog post for Barilla pasta’s Share The Table campaign. I had the kids help me cook the meal that night, which included things that they normally would decline to eat. You know, things like whole grain pasta, tomatoes, all other vegetables… When I mentioned to the kids that food always tastes better when you make it yourself, they couldn’t wait to finish their plates!

Ever since then I have tried to make an effort to get the kids involved in the meal preparation and I have to say that I am running at about a 75% success rate, which is outstanding! No more whining about spaghetti or lasagna having too many vegetables in them because the kids are controlling which and how many veggies are going in. They are also beaming with pride as they help serve the food to the table for family and friends. Win-Win!

Speaking of winning… You still have time to enter Barilla’s Share The Table contest where you can win 1 of 3 trips for four to Italy!! My bags are already packed in case you win and can’t think of anyone else to bring with you. My Italian is quite weak, in fact non-existent, but I smile a lot and don’t sleep walk, so there’s that! Please also check out the Barilla Share The Table website for some great tips and tricks on how to make mealtime a meaningful experience in your house.

Schick Drive Free

How Would You Like To Drive Free For A Year?

I bet you thought I was joking with a title like that, didn’t you? In case you hadn’t realized it before, owning a vehicle can get pretty expensive. Between rising gas prices, insurance and depreciation, I often think I’m going to need a second job just to afford staying on the road. The folks over at Schick® understand this reality as well and decided to launch the Schick® Drive Free For A Year giveaway so that one lucky driver could stop worrying about car bills for a whole year! Seeing as how that person cannot be me, I wanted to share this news with all of you in hopes that one of you are named the winner. Imagine how great it would be to drive me all over the place as a thank you for sharing this amazing contest with you? I know I can’t wait!!

I can feel how excited you are getting right now so I’m just going to cut right to the chase. Here are the steps you need to complete in order to win:

Step 1 – Look for participating products in your favourite stores. Then, check for a yellow “Drive Free for a Year” sticker. Also, you can win without making a purchase by writing a 50 word essay on “Why Schick® is my Preferred Brand” and mail it to: The Schick Drive Free for a Year Grand Prize Draw and Instant Win Promotion (Request for No Purchase unique PIN number), Dept 3112, Box 9500 Lakeshore West PO, Oakville ON, L6K 0G4. Let’s be honest though, it’s much easier to stock up on razors, am I right??

Step 2 – Visit the Schick® We Set You Free website, click on the Drive Free tab and register for the contest. It’s quick and easy – takes only 5 minutes. Or, if you’re already registered, just sign in.

Step 3 – Now it’s time to enter your PIN. Be sure to check that it’s a yellow “Drive Free for a Year” sticker. You could win great prizes instantly (over 2400 of them) – plus every PIN is an entry into the Grand Prize draw to Drive Free for a Year!

To sum that all up, buy the product, enter the code, win stuff! You can visit the Schick® We Set You Free website for more details and don’t forget to follow the @FreeYourSkinCA Twitter handle for more info and giveaways during the Drive Free campaign!

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in this program, however I seriously considered turning it down after realizing that this blocked me from entering. I also seriously expect one of you to drive me around if you win…

TropicanaBottledSummer Prize Pack

Win A Tropicana Summer Prize Pack! #TropicanaBottledSummer

The summer of winning continues here at Canadian Dad HQ and next on the list is the sweet prize pack above from Tropicana! On top of the fun summer toys in the prize pack, Tropicana have even thrown in a $50 PC gift card to get your next BBQ off on the right foot! Also, while I have you here I would like to admit that I singlehandedly drank all the Tangerine Lemonade that Tropicana sent me to share with my family. No, I am not proud of myself. Yes, it was so good that I would probably do it again. Go buy some for yourself and you’ll see what I’m talking about. While your out, you should definitely also try Tropicana’s new Watermelon Fruit Drink because it is the perfect compliment to any summer outing.

Back to the business at hand, all you have to do to enter is fill out as many of the entry methods as you feel like in the Rafflecopter form below and I’ll draw a winner on July 17th. Giveaway is open to residents of Canada, excluding Quebec (I’m so sorry, Quebec, I am a huge Montreal Canadiens fan and this stings every time). Go get it, folks!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Disclosure: I received compensation for my participation in Tropicana’s campaign. That said, I actually hid in the garage at one point and drank the Tangerine Lemonade straight out of the bottle so my wife and kids wouldn’t see me…

Merrell Socks Sandals

The Hypocrisy Of The Foot Pic

It’s no secret to anyone who knows me that I am not a huge fan of the pictures of other people’s feet that seem to invade my internet feed on a daily basis. I could never figure out what it was about a picture of a foot that made anyone think, “I need to share this amazing foot picture for all the world to see!”. For the longest time I was beating on the #NoFeetPics drum…until now.

You see, I recently agreed to work with one of my favourite stores in Mark’s on their #ForAllWalks campaign, which required me to try out some shoes from their new line. Being someone who has never owned a really nice pair of sandals I was excited that Mark’s had their Merrell Kahuna III Sandal on the availability list. Once the sandals arrived my wife correctly pointed out that in order to properly discuss them, I was going to have to take a picture of me wearing them… A FOOT PIC, NOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!

I quickly started running through alternative options in my head. I got away with it in my first post by pretending to use them to swat at wasps, which I did actually do. Then I thought, socks and sandals, but I think we can all agree from the cover photo that this is a way worse option. I came to the conclusion that the only way I can come out of this with my head held high is to do the thing that I have been railing against for years.

The bright side to this conclusion is that I really love the Merrell Kahuna III Sandal so if I have to post a picture of my feet, I’m happy to do it while wearing them. Side note before we get to the finished product, these are truly the most comfortable and versatile sandals I have ever owned and have become my go to footwear whenever we are running out of the house to go play outside. Alright, without further ado, I present to you a picture of my feet!

Merrell Sandals Feet Pics

I’d like to thank Mark’s for including me in their #ForAllWalks campaign. All of the shoes I had the chance to try out have been amazing and have really opened my eyes to the importance of investing in good shoes. I highly encourage you all to head on over to the Mark’s website and check out what they have to offer. You can also interact with the Mark’s social channels by visiting them at their Facebook, Twitter or Instagram pages!

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in this program but I truly dislike all of the feet pics that have infiltrated the internet. I mean, they’re feet, people! Feet!!!!

Sprinkler Summer

What To Do Now That Summer Is Finally Here!

We don’t live in one of those fancy cities where it is sunny and hot all year long. No, first we must make it through a mostly fun but always way too long winter season. Well, none of that matters now because summer is officially here and we are already off to a blazing start! I want to know what your favourite summer activities, events and destinations are so that I can steal them and make them my own, so please feel free to share them in the comments section below. That said, I figured I’d get the ball rolling by sharing some of my family’s favourite summertime activities!

Fairs/Community BBQs

After attending our community’s summer kick-off BBQ this past weekend I remembered how much I love the warm weather and the ability to ditch the sweater and grab some shorts and a t-shirt. The warm weather definitely affects my mood in the best possible way, as witness by the fact that I climbed into a bubble suit and let a bunch of 7 years take running shots at me.

Summer Fairs Carnival

Pool Parties

Now that the DadBod is the coolest thing going, I have even more reason to take the family to as many pool parties as I can this year. On top of that, I love watching the pride in my children’s eyes as they learn to swim without their floaties. As with every other aspect of parenting, these are moments that I hope I can hold on to forever.

Summer Canonball

Road Hockey

Let me tell you something about the girl in this picture. Anything you can do, she will try to do it better. Road hockey is a daily event at our place (yes, we’re Canadian) and even though she’s the smallest of the bunch, she is also the most tenacious. You can get by her once but don’t you dare try the same move twice!

Road Hockey Summer

Bike Rides

I am proud to say that we have seen our last set of training wheels as both kids are now rocking the two wheelers. Sure, they still have the Avengers and Elsa plastered all over them but that isn’t going to hold us back from taking long rides to the ice cream shop this summer.

Biking Summer

The Greatest Lemonade Stand Ever!

A Lemonade Stand is a staple in any childhood, and do you know what can take your stand from good to great this summer?? Stocking your stand with the NEW! Tropicana Watermelon and Tropicana Lemonade with Tangerine, that’s what! Throw in the traditional Tropicana Lemonade to the mix and you will have the most diverse Lemonade Stand than anyone on the block. Furthermore, all three delicious varieties are made with real fruit and without any artificial ingredients. I’m not sure what you are still waiting for, the new Tropicana line is available at major grocery retailers across Canada, so get moving!

New Tropicana Flavours Lemonade

That brings me back to my original question. What are your favourite summertime activities?

Disclosure: I received compensation for my participation in Tropicana’s campaign, however my Lemonade stand brings all the boys to the yard and they’re like, it’s better than yours.

GoodLife Fitness Membership

Project #DadFit – Win a 1 Month Membership To GoodLife Fitness!

So, this exercise thing is pretty fun once you get into a rhythm, isn’t it? I have been making my weekly trips to GoodLife Fitness and have even convinced my wife to start coming with me. Having the on-site daycare service has been a life saver, literally I guess. Next week I am going to start weight training, which is scary and exciting at the same time, so we’ll see how that goes!

Also, in order to celebrate the opening of a new GoodLife Fitness at 900 Exhibition Way, Lansdowne Park in Ottawa, I am giving away a 1 month Membership to a GoodLife Fitness near you! All you have to do to enter is fill out as many of the options as you’d like on the Rafflecopter form below and I’ll select a winner on July 6th. Good Luck and don’t forget to get your sweat on!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Marks Giveaway

Win A $100 Mark’s Gift Card

Last week I talked about the reasons you need to invest in a good pair of shoes and now I want to help you with that investment by giving you the chance to win a $100 gift card to Mark’s! Don’t want to use it on shoes? That’s fine, too, because it’s your money and who am I to tell you what to do with it?!

I’ve made it easy to enter the giveaway. Simply fill out as many of the below options as you’d like and I’ll draw a winner on July 2nd. Sorry, Quebec, our giveaway relationship will be staying dicey on this one as you are not eligible to win. If you want to get a head start on what you are going to buy with your gift card, you can visit the Mark’s website to browse all of their great products! Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Ball Hockey Game

The Agony Of Defeat

The buzzer sounded to signal the end of the game, and our season, as it were. I looked down the bench at their 7 year old exhausted faces, some welling up with tears, and couldn’t help but feel terrible for them. They worked harder than I’ve ever seen them work and came up just a bit short. The first thing we tell kids after the trademark, “Have Fun”, is that if you work your hardest, good things will happen. It’s not easy to find out that sometimes your hardest isn’t quite enough to win.

It was also a strange experience for me because it was the first time I could feel my son’s disappointment after losing and I’ve been having trouble shaking it. No, seriously, I am putting on a strong face for my son and saying things like “you have to lose before you can truly appreciate winning” but inside I am heartbroken for these kids who left everything out on the floor. This is one of those times that I really miss my dad, who would have had plenty of these stories to share from my youth. I’ve always wondered what was going through his head as I sobbed quietly on the car ride home after being cut from a competitive team. I’m sure I’ll soon find out as my son enters the competitive age range.

As for my son, pride doesn’t begin to describe the way I feel about his growth this season. For the first half of the season he played passively, not really getting into the play, almost as if he were afraid of making a mistake. It wasn’t until a mid season tournament where we had a talk about determination that I noticed an almost instant change. The next game he came out tenacious, taking the ball and forcing the other team to make mistakes, which also resulted in his first goal of the year. After seeing the look of pride on his face as he returned to the bench, I knew there was no looking back. He even started adding “all new” before his name whenever he talked about his sports. Watching him work his hardest while also carrying a huge smile on his face has been my most rewarding time as his father up to this point.

Speaking of rewarding moments. In the true spirit of a Canadian hockey player, my son lost his tooth mid game last week, rinsed out the blood on the bench and got back out there for his next shift. I’m telling you, this kid is destined for great things 😀

Canadian Hockey Missing Teeth

Mark's Work Warehouse Far West

Four Reasons Why You Need A Good Pair Of Shoes

Something occurred to me the other day as I browsed the clearance bin for new shoes. While I may not spend a lot on my shoes, I feel like I am constantly buying new ones because of the wear and tear of a busy life. When I really think about it, I am spending the same amount on multiple pairs of low end shoes that I could be investing in one or two high quality pairs.

This spring, Mark’s has graciously offered to allow me to test out what real footwear feels like as part of their #ForAllWalks campaign. To kick things off I have created a list of “Four Reasons Why You Need A Good Pair Of Shoes” and here it is!

4. Protection From Toy Pain

Mark's Work Warehouse Merrell Chameleon

Every parent in the world understands toy pain. It’s the incredible pain that shoots up your leg and straight to your brain after stepping on one of your children’s toys. This is most commonly associated with LEGO but as I have recently discovered, Beyblades are just as painful to step on if you are not wearing the appropriate footwear. To defend against the psychological long term damaged often caused by toy pain, may I recommend the Merrell Chameleon Prime Stretch Shoes. These shoes are designed for life out in the wild, which let’s face it, is exactly what parenting is.

3. Your Are Not A Child Anymore And Old Bones Need Support

Mark's Work Warehouse Old Bones

I’m not going to lie, this realization is a painful one to deal with. Gone are the days where I could quickly grab a pair of sandals from the dollar store and be on my way. After about one hour in those things today, I would need to lie down with my legs iced for the rest of the day. Since I have been wandering around in the Merrell Kahuna III Sandals that Mark’s sent me, I haven’t felt an ounce of pain! Well, not counting the bruises on my shins from my son’s hockey stick… The point is, as we get older and at all ages, really, we need to outfit our feet with footwear that provides proper support.

2. Running From Wasps

Mark's Work Warehouse Merrell Kahuna

I am a man. I am also a man who does not like wasps and my house always seems to be infested with them. Do you know how hard it is to outrun a wasp? Now picture trying to outrun a wasp while wearing cheap shoes and you’ll see my point. Better yet, with the Merrell hiking shoes I mentioned earlier I might not even need to run. I could simply take off the shoe and swing it as if it were Thor’s hammer and the wasps would be running from me!

1. Versatility of Dad Life

Mark's Work Warehouse Merrell Kahuna Dad

I saved the most important reason for last. Being a parent is a lot of work and we have to wear may different hats, or shoes as it were. Up until recently I owned only two pairs of shoes, one for work and one for everything else. I’ve since realized that a cheap skate shoe provides little to no support when hiking in the woods, hanging out on the beach and many other scenarios we are faced as parents. Shoes might seem like something that you can flake on but once your feet get a taste of a good quality shoe, they will never let you forget it.

I have a challenge for you. Think about how often we use our feet and then look at your shoe collection and decide whether you are taking care of one of your most valuable resources. If you decide that you could use a tune up, head on over to the Mark’s website and check out what they have to offer. If you’re really feeling ambitious, you should snap a photo of your Mark’s kicks and share it on Mark’s Facebook, Twitter or Instagram page with the #ForAllWalks tag.

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in this program, however my bones are indeed feeling old and I am afraid of wasps. Stop giggling.