What Happens When You Bring Kinder Surprise Eggs To A Fictional Tea Party

You can call it unmanly if you’d like but I love playing dolls with my daughter. We get a chance to laugh together and it’s one of the few times where she gets to be the boss as she lets me know all the mistakes I’m making.

We recently had a big event in the house when it was one of the dolls birthdays! I decided not to ask why this specific doll got to have 4 birthdays in one month because I’m sure there was a perfectly rational explanation. Anyway, because of the special occasion, I volunteered to bring dessert for all of the guests in attendance.

The Kinder Surprise eggs were a huge hit and the video below hints at what happened to the eggs that the dolls obviously couldn’t eat… Enjoy!

Kinder News & Notes

If you and your children love Kinder Surprise Eggs, don’t forget to tag them on Instagram @KinderCanada when sharing your pictures.

Make sure to pop in to the Kinder Surprise Facebook Page for fun and activities, especially on #KinderPlayWednesday!

I was compensated for my participation in the #KinderDad program. All the chocolate eating was 100% real…

Just OneTap

Help Stop Distracted Driving With OneTap

Let me tell you a story from this past summer. I was driving on the highway when I noticed that the pickup truck in front of me was weaving in and out of the lane. My first thought was that the person may have been drinking, so I pulled two lanes over just to stay out of harms way. The next thing I saw was the truck smash into the cement median, fishtail and continue driving.

At this point curiosity got the best of me and I caught up to the truck to see what was going on. As I glanced over I was shocked to see that not only had the driver smashed into the wall because he was typing something on his phone, but also that he was STILL doing something on his phone and not looking at the road! Needless to say, I got as far away from this guy as possible.

This is not to say that I am perfect by any means. We’ve all glanced down at a text or answered the phone while driving, mostly because it’s so accessible to do so. In fact, according to a 2014 RCMP Traffic Services report, the leading cause of fatal crashes in Canada over the past five years is distracted driving, contributing to 33% of these accidents. Well, Canadian owned company, App Colony, wanted to help change that, so they developed OneTap, a breakthrough new app for Android phones (IOS version coming soon), proudly supported by The Co-operators Group, that will stop distracted driving in its tracks. Now, driving safely takes #JustOneTap.

    How It Works

Acting as your ‘personal assistant’ on the go, OneTap uses the built-in GPS on your phone to know when you’re in a vehicle and driving. Once you get going, OneTap is automatically enabled, blocking out pings, rings and other notifications that pull our attention away the road. Unlike other solutions on the market though, when a text comes in, OneTap doesn’t just block the alert. Instead, its Auto-Reply function replies to calls and texts immediately, letting people know that you’re driving and when you expect to be finished. One2One™ urgent connect technology notifies you when there’s an urgent message, allowing you to pull over and safely respond.

Another cool feature is that when you connect to friends and family through OneTap, you will be able to see where your loved ones are and if they are driving. And don’t worry, privacy settings within the app can be adjusted to ensure information is only shared with individuals selected by the user.

I can’t think of a good reason to not at least try out the OneTap app. If you are interested in more information, you can go to the OneTap Website or you can install the app from the Google Play Shop!

OneTap

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in the #JustOneTap campaign, but seriously people, put your phones down.

#DadFit Hard Work

Project #DadFit – This Sh*t Is Hard

I knew the journey to a healthier me would be challenging but I had no idea it was going to be this difficult. Late last year I started running, hit the gym multiple times a week and even had P90X3 going strong. Nothing could stop me. Or so I thought.

Enter the busy Christmas season, snow on the ground and a bout of laziness and everything I had worked for is now far in the rearview mirror. I’ve wanted so badly to get back into my routines but I’m struggling to find the starting point. I’m now back to my old ways, which happen to include non-stop snacking, shortness of breath, sucking in my stomach to fit into my clothes and a complete lack of motivation to do any of the things I used to love doing, such as blogging and podcasting.

Inconsistency seems to be the only consistent thing in my life right now and I’m slowly working my way through it. What is this thing that holds us down even though we want nothing more than to move forward? I’ve watched all the motivational videos, seen what being out of shape can do to you and even interviewed a bunch of health experts, yet here I sit, unable to muster the strength to get off the couch.

I took a first step yesterday when I signed up for a trial membership at my local GoodLife Fitness and plan on attending my first session in the coming days. There is a lot of work to be done and I honestly have no idea if I’ll be able to get it done, but I’m going to keep chipping away at it in hopes that it’ll eventually stick.

I’m going to go ahead and assume that others are going through the same struggles that I am so I can feel like less of a failure and more of an every man. If you are struggling, feel free to share your story in the comments and maybe we can work through this thing together.

GoodLife Fitness Prize Pack

Win a 3 Month GoodLife Fitness Membership & Prize Pack!

To celebrate Heart Month and the fact that I am now officially a member at GoodLife Fitness, I am teaming up with GoodLife to give away a 3 month membership along with the prize pack shown above.

This February, GoodLife Fitness has teamed up with the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre to host the Healthy Heart Challenge to help keep your heart pumping!

Throughout the month, challenge participants will be encouraged to get CardioStrong through:

- daily cardiac stats and trends

- advice from a team of cardiologist and dieticians about preventing heart disease and stroke

- fitness tips and exercise ideas from GoodLife experts

- recipe ideas and nutrition tips to lower your risks

- suggestions for reducing stress and getting better sleep

As you complete the challenges, make sure you share your accomplishments and photos on social media using the #IHeartExercise hashtag. A lot of people won’t admit it but reading their friends journey to healthier lifestyles can be a striog motivator to get healthy themselves.

Giveaway

To get you started on the right foot, I am giving away a GoodLife Prize Pack that includes 1 GoodLife Fitness gym bag, a 3-month GoodLife Fitness membership, 1 branded water bottle and an #IHeartExercise t-shirt (various sizes available). The value of this prize pack is estimated at $250.

To enter, all you have to do is leave a comment below telling me what your biggest obstacle is on your journey to becoming a healthier you. The giveaway closes Feb 28th and is open to residents of Canada, excluding Quebec. Good Luck and don’t forget to join the Healthy Heart Challenge on Facebook!

Disney On Ice Worlds Of Fantasy

Win 4 Tickets To Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Fantasy {Ottawa}

Disney on Ice has been a staple event in our house since we’ve had kids. I have to admit that while the skaters are all extremely talented and the show quality is second to none, I get the most joy out of watching my children’s faces throughout the show. You can see the “Disney magic” in their eyes as they shout out the names of the characters as they pour out onto the ice.

Disney on Ice’s Worlds of Fantasy show will be hitting the Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa from February 25th to March 1st and I want your family to be there! With the help of Canadian Tire Centre and Feld Entertainment, I am giving away a 4 pack of tickets to the February 25th show, so you can experience the magic yourself. All you have to do is enter using the form below and a winner will be chosen on February 15th. Easy as that!

Don’t want to wait to win tickets? No worries, you can buy your tickets by visiting www.CapitalTickets.ca, by phone at 613-599-FANS (3267) or 1-877-788-FANS (3267). Here is a little more info on the show:

Rev up for non-stop fun Wednesday, Feb. 25, through Sunday, March 1, at Canadian Tire Centre with four of your favourite Disney stories at Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Fantasy. Thrill to high-speed stunts as Lightning McQueen, Mater and the crew of Disney/Pixar’s Cars race across the ice. Dive into The Little Mermaid’s enchanting undersea kingdom and enter the mystical world of Pixie Hollow with Tinker Bell and the Disney Fairies as they reveal the magic that lies within. The toys are back in town with heroic action when Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Jessie and the Toy Story gang escape from the rambunctious tots of Sunnyside Daycare and race for home, in their most daring adventure ever!

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Canadian Dad Podcast - Blogger Mike Reynolds

Canadian Dad Podcast: Ep. 10 – Parenting Writer, Mike Reynolds

Today on the podcast I welcome Huffington Post contributor, children’s author and Puzzling Posts blogger, Mike Reynolds.

We took some time to discuss the different standards between men and women in sport, specifically speaking about Eugenie Bouchard and the Women’s World Cup of Soccer/Football.

This being Bell Let’s Talk day, we also get into a discussion about mental illness and share our personal stories. I believe that the stigma is slowly lifting and will only continue to fade as more people take a stand. The more we talk, the more we help.

As always, if you enjoyed the show, please take a minute to visit iTunes and leave a rating and review. That is how you get the show out to the world and I would be forever grateful! Have a great day!

Children Art Class

In Dreams

Once the sheep have returned to their pen and the sand starts to form, that’s when the real fun begins. This is the land where imagination becomes reality and anything is possible. Often peaceful, occasionally scary, but always an adventure. In dreams there are no mountains too high or tasks too tall. If you want to fly, you can fly to the moon. If you want to run, you can run faster than the speed of light, and, if you feel like saving the world, well, you can do that too.

Every night, before I go to sleep, I check in on my children for no reason but to see their peaceful faces as they drift off to their own imaginary worlds. I wonder if they are dreaming happy dreams and sometimes secretly hope I’ve made a cameo, even if it is as a dragon or a princess. It’s always nice to be thought of after all.

It’s rare that we take the time to capture our dreams, or even remember them at all, but maybe we should try more often. My daughter took a shot at it recently and what she came up with both captured my imagination and filled me with pride. She described the painting with such reality that you didn’t need to ask why there were upside down trees and flowers in the ocean. The answer, of course, was simply because there are.

Through her art I got a glimpse into her creative mind and longed for the days when my own mind was filled with such vibrant scenery. I certainly don’t think I’m too old to get it back. I think I just misplaced it somewhere along the way and I intend on searching for it. In the meantime, I wish you all the wildest of dreams.

H&R Block Family Tax Cut

I Admit It! I Don’t Know How To Do Taxes

As I’m sure you can attest, nobody likes to admit their weaknesses. Don’t get me wrong, we all have them. There’s something about saying them out loud, however, that is unsettling to me. Today’s admission comes at the hands of a yearly event that I dread, tax season!

I know a lot of people who do their own taxes and have no issues whatsoever. I, however, am NOT one of those people. As soon as I get the forms and log in to figure it out, my brain decides that it’s time for a nap and completely abandons me.

Truth be told, I have actually muddled through it a few times and no matter how right I think I am, we would always end up getting an adjustment letter, letting me know how wrong I was. It always felt like the teacher bringing back your test with a big “F” on it and a “Come see me” note. Embarrassing…

With the implementation of the Family Tax Cut this year, I am not going to be taking any chances. Families with children under the age of 18 will be able to claim a non-refundable tax credit equal to the amount of tax savings that would be realized by transferring up to $50,000 worth of income from the higher-earning to the lower-earning spouse or common-law partner.

With my wife being a stay at home mom, the family tax cut is geared specifically for families like mine and there is no way I am touching this one. Thankfully, the fine folks at H&R Block are completely up to speed on the new rules and promised me that they are going to take care of me and my family so I don’t mess it up. Again. For the price they are charging to do basic returns, I honestly don’t know why anyone would waste their time trying to figure it out on their own.

I’ll tell you what, because I like you all, I am going to give away a gift certificate good for one regular return (T4) that can be used at a retail H&R Block location. Sound good? Just fill out the form below and have a great day!!!

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Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in this campaign, however I really am terrible at doing my own taxes…

Parenting Roulette

The Game of Parenting Roulette

First off, Happy New Year! It’s nice to see you again and I hope you had an amazing holiday season. Speaking of holidays, my family had its share of traveling to do this season and it gave me the chance to notice an interesting game we play as parents.

It’s a game I like to call, Parenting Roulette. The concept is simple, you attend a party with a bunch of other parents and you all herd your children into one room to play together while you enjoy some adult time. The ages of your children don’t matter because they are children and adapt to all situations, right?

Winning the game takes zero skill and a lot of luck. About five to seven times throughout the party, one of the children will come out of the play area either crying or to fetch the parent of a crying child. Now for the roulette portion of the game. The parents all listen intently, with fingers crossed, as the crying child reveals the name of the offending child and then breathe a very loud sigh of relief if their child’s name isn’t called.

We had a pretty good run this season, only losing the game a couple times, but the odds change by the second in parenting roulette so you never feel like you have a sure bet. A quick pro-tip, this game is normally an unspoken thing between parents so if you are planning on gloating out loud, you may want to make sure you are around close friends and not simply acquaintances. You don’t want to be “that parent”, am I right?

I wish you the best of luck in future games of parenting roulette and may the odds be ever in your favor!

Nabob Respect The Bean

The Cure For Spice-ititis

The crisp air hits my face like a dump truck at full speed and the snow crunches under my boots while the kids laugh and make as many snowmen as the sprinkle of snow will allow. Winter is here, my friends, and there are a lot of happy faces around here.

One of my favourite things about Christmas are all the lights and decorations that brighten up our homes and our streets. It seems no matter what kind of mood you are in, you can’t help but hum along when you are surrounded by the holiday music and Christmas cheer!

I do my fair share of decorating during the holiday season, too. Lights inside and outside of the house, the Christmas tree and more. My wife, bless her heart, replaces all the cups, plates, blankets, couch pillows, fridge magnets and basically anything else you can Christmas-ticize. We are a festive family and we go all out over here, but there is one thing we will not decorate this holiday season and that thing is our coffee.

In this day of the Super Santa Spice Frappuccino and the Triple Swirl Mocha Whipped Latte, we prefer to keep things simple by sticking to the bean that got us hooked in the first place. There’s something comforting to me about brewing a nice strong cup of coffee, huddling up in front of the fireplace and watching the snow fall through the branches of our Christmas tree, that no amount of whipped cream or chocolate sauce can duplicate.

This holiday season, I urge you to try this. Grab some Nabob Coffee, brew yourself a pot and take some time to sit, relax and enjoy the quiet. Respect the bean and enjoy your coffee as it was intended to be enjoyed. After all, decorating is for trees, not coffee.

Disclosure: I was compensated for my participation in this program. The ideas and opinions in this post are my own. Don’t act so surprised that I know how to work a video camera!