We Tried It: LostMy.Name Books

lost-my-name-b-3lost-my-name-p-3lost-my-name-b-1I’ve always loved giving a personalized present to someone close to me. It feels very special to give family and friends a gift that’s unique and created solely for them. It’s why I’m so in love with LostMy.Name books.

LostMy.Name books started as a DIY-project between three fathers and an uncle, and quickly became a labour of love. They’ve created an easy-to-make book for any name in the world. How easy? Enter your child’s name, choose if the book is for a boy or a girl, and hit ‘Create Your Book’! You can add a personal dedication if you wish, and preview your book before ordering.


Creating a LostMy.Name storybook is as easy as 1-2-3. Enter the name of the child, choose boy or girl, and create your story. I was very curious to see how they would solve the problem of repeating letters, for instance in my name I have 3 A’s and 2 R’s. I was pleased to see that each letter “A” had it’s own unique page and story, which simply adds to the thoughtfulness of the book.

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Another bonus to this easy-to-make, personalized storybook? Free worldwide shipping. International shipping can get quite expensive when shopping online, yet LostMy.Name will ship your custom book for free!

The quality of the book really amazed me. It’s a large book, (A4 size – 210mm x 297mm), with thick, eco-friendly pages, and full colour illustrations. This book is a keepsake and will last years with the quality of the paper and covers.

I created a book for my son, as a Christmas present, and was just blown away by the detail and thoughtfulness that went into this personalized book. The thought of reading this book for years to come made me smile. It’s inventive, whimsical, and fun!

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I headed back to LostMy.Name to create another one for my daughter, however this is where I found the one negative. You cannot choose specific illustrations for each book. While many might not have a problem with this, if you want to buy more than one book for each of your children, and they have similar letters in their names, then their books will be very similar as well.

My daughter’s name is Chanel, which shares 4 letters with her brother’s name, and those four pages were the exact same in her book. I wish I was able to choose a different letter “H” so they wouldn’t have the same picture and story. Again, while this conflict might not be a problem for everyone, my daughter is older and would be able to see that they books were similar, while my little boy is too young for that.

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The books are meant for ages 2-6, while many purchase a book as a baby present (I know I would!). This is an exceptional and wonderful present to give a child for their birthday or as a Christmas present. This gift is perfect for the holidays as it is personalized, thoughtful, and the quality of the book is amazing and beautiful.

Visit LostMy.Name to create your own personalized storybook, and check them out on Facebook and Twitter, too!

Disclosure: The wonderful folks at LostMy.Name gifted me a copy of their lovely book. However I was not financially compensated for this post and all opinions expressed here are my own.

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What I’ve Learnt So Far #Moms30for30 Challenge

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When I first started the #moms30for30 challenge, I was super pumped and excited to suddenly be devoting some time to myself and to my own style. My style… what happened to it, I wonder?  I realized that every photo of me at almost every community event consisted of wearing tights and a tunic (easy, simple, chic… right?), but now that the little one is older (and going to daycare!), I need to step up my “me game”.

If you’re just catching up, the Moms 30 for 30 Challenge consists of choosing 30 items in your closet and wearing them all month long, mixing them up with each other and accessories to create new looks and actually wear your wardrobe! I signed up because I wasn’t wearing my wardrobe or giving any real thought to my style – but the first 9 days have already taught me a few things.

I’ve learnt that some of my clothing can be unflattering. The grey t-shirt above I would throw on to do errands or just work at home, it’s loose and comfortable, but seems to hit me in all the wrong places. Something I haven’t noticed in the almost two years that I’ve owned it.

I’ve learnt that iPhone photography done by an 8-year old can be blurry. Very blurry. Even after taking 15+ pictures. I’ve been posting my outfit of the day pictures (#ootd) on instagram and twitter, but missed a few days because of bad pictures! (ps. After my DSLR camera was stolen in June, I’ve been waiting patiently for a new one to simply drop into my lap. I don’t think that’s going to happen.)

I’ve learnt that living in a rainy zone, and being in the fall, most of my outfits will have to be rain boot compatible, and will also be showing off my rain boots. (Perhaps there should be another challenge like this done in May or June?)

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I’ve learnt that after a few days I seemed to run out of ideas – how do I mix this with that without looking boring, or like I’ve just worn it? It’s definitely been a wake up call. I know I haven’t always been this way, I know I used to have style (or some definition of it!), but motherhood, work life, building a house, and being constantly tired have made for a boring wardrobe (not to mention being overweight and not wanting to purchase new clothing!).

Keep following along with me as I document the following week with #ootds and #moms30for30 on twitter and instagram!

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Best Movies for Tweens

best-movies-for-tweensAs my daughter gets older (she’s eight, going on nine-teen!) I’ve definitely noticed that we’re entering the ‘Tween’ age. That odd age between 8 and 12, too young for teenage stuff (boys, makeup, high school), and too old for kid stuff (Barney, Dora, and Diego have left the building, folks!). I struggle with allowing her to grow up and discover more mature things, while she still wants to play with Lego, ride her bike, and create stories with her animal toys.

I want to be able to spend time with her, doing things that she wants to do, things she thinks are cool, and things that I think are still age appropriate. And that includes movies. There are a million and one movies out there for tweens and teenagers, but some are simply not appropriate for an almost-nine year old.

Things on my “Inappropriate Tween Movie List“? Silly girls being obsessed with clothes and outfits and shopping at the mall and wanting to make out with boys. Those are unnecessary, and I hate that so many films portray girls so one-dimensional. I also dislike realistic fighting and guns.

Things on the Age-Appropriate Tween Movie List? I love characters that are strong and that have to overcome weakness and adversity. I love movies that are funny, that place the main characters in tricky situations, serious or silly. I love movies that can show a more somber side of life, as well as fantastical and imaginative worlds. Movies that make you think, that have morals and lessons.

As I’ve been searching for some awesome tween movies, I thought I’d share with you some of the ones that we’ve come to love. Some are older, some are new, there are different genres, but they are all age-appropriate, and mostly good for both girls and boys.

Here are some of the Best Movies for Tweens:

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Aquamarine

When two girls find a real-live mermaid in their local swimming pool, their whole summer changes! My daughter absolutely adores this movie – despite the fact that she is not a girly girl or a fan of the Little Mermaid (which was one of my personal favourites as a kid!). It’s a light-hearted and fun movie, although has a bit of a boy-crazy side to it! Find Aquamarine on Amazon.

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Diary of a Wimpy Kid

Kids love this movie because of all the funny adventures Greg has with his brother, Rodrick, and best friend, Rowley. While I don’t adore that Greg is all about video games, the boys get into innocent trouble, the parents are fun and silly characters, and kids can relate to it. My daughter loves the books and the movies! Diary of a Wimpy Kid One, Two, and Three.

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The Princess Bride

One of the funniest movies of the last century, this is a classic that will have your kids laughing along with the silly characters, and getting into the adventure storyline. It’s a movie that’s fun to watch for the whole family, as well as quote for the rest of eternity… “Marriage has brought us together to-die!” The Princess Bride on Amazon.

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Robin Hood: Men in Tights

I grew up with this Robin Hood parody and can quote every line from the movie! Kids love the songs, the ridiculous outfits and silly adventure and fight scenes, while adults can enjoy the humour as well. There’s a little bit of mature humour and almost nudity in this movie, so use your discretion. Find Robin Hood: Men in Tights on Amazon.

parent-trapThe Parent Trap

This movie follows mischievous, seperated-at-birth-and-found-again twins as they try to bring their parents back together again. My daughter first watched this movie when she was in the hospital for her ears, and has loved it ever since. And it’s fun watching Lindsay Lohan when she first started! Find The Parent Trap here.

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A Cat in Paris

This animated movie is a wonderful adventure/crime film, where a cat leads a young Parisian girl to solve a mystery in one night. It’s not overly frightening, but definitely delivers a sense of suspense and thrills, along with beautiful animation. I think this film is magical.  A Cat in Paris on Amazon.

harrypotterHarry Potter

Based on J.K. Rowling’s incredible book series, the Harry Potter movies are fantastical, imaginative, and great for tweens. I have only watch the first three movies with my daughter, but I think as she gets older we’ll watch the remaining ones. Harry Potter 1-8  on Amazon.

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Homeward Bound

For the animal and adventure lover, this movie is amazing and a great classic. Following the three animals across mountains and forests, there is an emotional connection, as well as a few funny moments. Kids of all ages can relate to both the humans and the animals in the movie. Find Homeward Bound on Amazon.

spirited_awaySpirited Away

This film is about a 10-year old girl who embarks down a tunnel and ends up in a weird and fantastical world. The story appeals to viewers of any age. Find Spirited Away on Amazon. Fans of Japanese animation will also enjoy similar movies such as My Neighbour Totoro and The Secret World of Arrietty.

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The Chronicles of Narnia

Based on the wonderful book series by C.S. Lewis, there have been three Narnia movies made so far, with a fourth on the way. These films are fantastical with lots of adventure, but still feel like they are real for the viewers. They are long, but definitely worth it. Find The Chronicles of Narnia One, Two, and Three on Amazon.

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Ramona and Beezus

Kids love the adventures of Ramona Quimby and her big sister Beezus (I loved the book as a child!) , and this movie brings the story to life in a fun way! My daughter loves this movie and thinks it’s hilarious! Find Ramona and Beezus on Amazon.

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Home Alone 1 & 2

The classic movie where Kevin’s family forgot him at home when they went on vacation is a must-watch. I love Home Alone 1 & 2 (did you know they go all the way up to 5 now?!), and so do my kids. Hilarious situations, tricky villains, and emotional moments make it a fun movie for the whole family. Find Home Alone 1 & 2 on Amazon.

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Beethoven

If you have a dog lover on your hands, you must introduce them to Beethoven. This fun tale about a St. Bernard and the family that took him in is funny and touching at once. Find Beethoven on Amazon.


 

There are so many great movies for tweens, and this list is just the beginning! Do you have any favourite movies that your tweens like to watch?

This post includes affiliate links, meaning if you click on a link and purchase a product, West Coast Mama receives a small percentage of that sale. 

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Halloween 2014

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This year’s Halloween was so much fun for our family! Our precious little girl became a scary, creepy zombie, complete with blood and gory skin, and our little man finally decided that he would join in the fun, put on his costume, and became a real life monkey!

It’s tough making a rambunctious and stubborn toddler wear his costume! For last year’s Halloween, he absolutely refused to wear his Elmo suit and simply went as himself, while my daughter became a silly Angry Bird. (PS. 7 Years of Halloween!) The kids got loads of candy, my mom, who’s visiting from Ontario, got to join in the trick or treat fun, and the weather was PERFECT. The rain stopped just before we headed out and it was a nice evening for fireworks and hot chocolates (spiked with Baileys!).

How was your Halloween?

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How to Remix Your Wardrobe in 30 Days

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It seems these days I don’t have time for much. Correction – it seems these days I’m so busy that I don’t have much time for ME. Grocery shopping, meal planning, house cleaning. Invoicing, quoting, emailing, sourcing. Children, husband, social obligations. When is it time for ME?

I’ve decided to take part in the #moms30for30 wardrobe challenge with some awesome and fabulous bloggers. Why? Because my wardrobe has fallen into a slump – I have a mommy uniform! Leggings, plain t-shirts, and usually my rain boots on my feet. I’m excited for this challenge because I think it’s time to focus on me, add a bit of style to the mix, accessorize, and wear things in my closet that I haven’t worn in a long time!

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The Bloggers:

Margarita (that’s me!) – WestCoastMama.net
Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

RajPinkChaiLiving.com
Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

SalmaTheWriteBalance.ca
Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

ShawnaDoveTailBlog.com
Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

Taslim LetMeOutCreative.com
Twitter | Facebook

I’ll be sharing my daily outfit posts on instagram & twitter, so be sure to follow me there, as well as the rest of these chic bloggers! I’ll also be posting my 30 clothing items tomorrow! Everyone here has their own reasons to do this challenge, but at the heart of it is to make some extra time for ourselves, which is so important as a mom! I’m super excited to start this and I hope you follow along! Do you make time for your style?

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