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We are back from the beautiful North West of France after 24 hours of driving all the way from the South and back. It was a long and tiresome journey especially with a one year old, yet the drive was well worth it as the beauty of France was on full display the whole way. I am always in awe how such a small country can have such a diverse landscape. Normandy felt like it was in a completely different hemisphere compared to Cannes and the South. The North is so rugged, flat, and grey. We were so lucky with gorgeous weather the entire trip, as it is known for its constant rain, especially in Autumn. I loved this part of France so much and am thrilled to share my travel diary. If you have never been to Normandy it definitely needs to be added to your travel list right now. 

Ever since I moved to France almost four years ago, I have been told countless times that I need to go to Normandy. It seems to have a huge fan club among everyone who has been lucky enough to make the trip there. Since the first time I was told to go I have been admiring the region from a distance, hoping one day to make the long trip out there. So when our good friends Anne-Sophie and Loïc invited us to their wedding in her native Normandy, we knew now was our time to check that travel box off. My older sister Alex who I've mentioned a few times now is a wedding and family photographer, was hired by Anne-Sophie and Loïc to capture their wedding. We were so happy she could come all the way from Toronto and join us on our road trip. 

Since Normandy is so far from Cannes we decided to split our drive to the North and stopped in gorgeous Beaune. Beaune is located in Burgundy which is famous for its wine, so I was one happy mama. I love red wine more than life and any excuse to stop halfway to Normandy to drink it, is fine by me. Since we only had half a day there we wanted to see as much as we could. We walked around the entire fort which was a lot smaller than I thought, so it took us less than an hour. We ended our walk at the Hospices de Beaune where we got to see those gorgeous tiled roofs up close. After our walk we were feeling a little parched and decided to go into a restaurant for an aperitif. There we enjoyed a bottle of local wine and cheese, as you do when in France. I booked us in the Hotel Anthanor which was perfect for one night. It was in the center of all of the action, so we didn't have to drive anywhere in our short stay.

From Beaune we left bright and early and began our 6 hour journey to Courcy, Normandy. Courcy is a tiny farming village with not a whole lot to do, but was so close to the wedding Château so it was perfect. We rented a lovely little house on a large farm property with tons of animals. Oslo was in heaven with the donkey, horse, chickens, and geese running around. At this age he is starting to have a huge interest in animals,  he was so content to spend time just watching and engaging with them. 

We spent our first day just enjoying the beautiful property and relaxed as much as we could after the long drive. It was so nice to just explore the local area on foot and see what life was like in such a small town. 

We had a free day before the wedding so it was a no brainer that we would go to see my dream destination, Mont Saint-Michel. Mont Saint-Michel is the reason I wanted to visit Normandy for so long. For years I have seen photos of it and has it always takenaw my breath away. James had never been before either so even though it was almost a two hour drive, we decided it was well worth the journey. 

These photos can't begin to do any justice for the spectacular beauty of Mont Saint-Michel. As we drove down the rode leading up to the Mont we could see it in the distance, and even though it is miles away it is already completely breathtaking. We arrived when the tide was low and I wished we could have stayed longer into the evening to capture the tide racing in and enveloping the island. October was a great time to go as it was much less touristy, but it is such a huge attraction so there were still many other people. The abbey, which is the castle like building at the top, was the most impressive feature. We climbed what felt like a million stairs leading up to the top of the abbey and were greeted by a gorgeous view of the surrounding land and ocean.

We let Oslo crawl around a little bit inside because the car ride was so long, and he loved it! He frantically crawled to each column and stood up, so proud of himself. He loved to look out at the view as well. I am always impressed with how intrigued he is when we take him to beautoful places. I really think this baby was born to travel.

We left the Mont late afternoon and on the way home we decided to stop in Beuvron-en-Auge, a charming village which is known for being one of France's most beautiful towns. We ate dinner at Colomb'Auge Crêperie which I couldn't recommend enough. Famous for their sweet and savoury crêpes we had one of each and washed it all down with some local apple cider. I would go all the way back to Normandy just for their caramel apple crêpe topped with ice cream again. It was too good!

Saturday was the day we were all waiting for, the wedding! This was my first French wedding and I was thrilled that it was going to held at a traditional Château. The ceremony was at a little village church and after that we all headed to the stunning Château de Canon. In true French fashion we arrived to champagne and incredible hors d'oeuvres. It was warm enough to enjoy cocktail hour outside just as the sun was setting. The dinner was held inside the Château and after our delicious meal we all danced the night away until 5am! I couldn't believe it until I checked the time. We had so much fun and Oslo was a dream, sleeping the night away in a quiet room off of the dining room. 

The wedding was such a special day and it was amazing to be in the presence of so much love. Félicitations Anne-Sophie et Loïc! We are so happy for you!

In France usually the day after the wedding the new bride and groom host a brunch for all of the guests. So on Sunday feeling very tired and a tad hungover we returned back to the Château de Canon to relive the fun of the night before. I was so happy we could go back because this time we had an opportunity to explore the grounds and we discovered a secret garden. This garden was my version of heaven. I was surprised to see there were still flowers blooming in October, each plant and flower was bursting with colour. Of course we had to have an impromptu photoshoot to capture all of the beauty there. 

After that lovely brunch we had to unfortunately leave and head back to the South. We wished we could have stayed even longer, but the memories and moments we had in Normandy were incredible. This is a place I now hold in my heart and I've already told James we need to go back asap. Until next time Normandy!


Hello midweekers! It has been way too long since the last time I posted a Music Mix, I've been a little preoccupied, sorry, sorry, sorry! This playlist right here is one I have been listening to for a while now, but completely forgot to share. After you listen to this playlist you are going to think I am the most selfish person for not sharing it sooner, it's that good. It's been playing non-stop in the background of my life for the past few weeks and I'm still not sick of it. So treat your ears to a little listen and enjoy!


I have officially marked my first year as a stay-at-home mum. Oslo is one and I feel now with my experience and all I have been through, I wanted to get this written and out there. I want to share my thoughts and feelings about being a full-time mum to a baby in these times.
My mum stayed at home to raise my two sisters and me. That was her job and what she feels is her greatest achievement. Back when I was a kid, most of my friend's mums were at home. Some of them might have had a part-time job, but having your mum at home full-time was the norm.
Flash forward thirty or so years to now and a stay-at-home mum is a rare thing. Suddenly it feels as if a woman's worth is best achieved in a job outside the home at work; less so in the time she spends at home raising her children. When my mum was raising us it was more normal for the father to go off and bring home the bacon, while the mother took care of the children and home. This is how it had been for so many years before women strove for “equality” with men and had the choice of what career path to take. So now that women in the West can be – mostly --  whoever they want, I feel people think it's strange to want to go back to the days where women stayed at home. My role as a stay at home mum in the 21st century is being questioned now more than ever.
Now I want to preface this post by saying I support every single mother out there. Whether she works, stays at home, has her child in daycare or has a nanny, family, or friend caring for her child, mothers are incredible. We all are. No matter if you are doing it with someone or alone, together we are raising the future, and that is huge. So my opinion is not meant to take anything away from working mothers or fathers at all. I just want to express myself on how I feel I am viewed as a mother who is exclusively raising her child from home.
I can't begin to tell you how many times I am asked in a month: what’s your plan next? What's my next step? What will I do after Oslo goes to school? Where do I see myself? At times I feel like I am in a job interview with the amount of questions I get regarding my future and ambitions. I usually answer politely and say, I'm not the type who looks too far in the future because I prefer to live in the present, and am happy with where I am right now. Then I usually get a follow up question like, yeah but you can't be a stay-at-home mum forever, what will you do? These questions always make me feel smaller than I am and that my role as a mum is being degraded. It's frustrating to say the least, and I always have a hard time not getting defensive.
Now that I can reflect on it, I do feel I should defend my view. I take pride in my role as a mother who chooses to stay at home to raise my son, to ensure he is getting the best care possible. I should also defend the other women who are lucky enough to do this and sacrifice so much for it. I should defend that I think a stay-at-home parent should get a small salary for choosing not to build a career for raising their children.
Why is it that our partners – the breadwinners – get all the glory in today's society? Yes, it's an incredible thing to have a partner who can solely support us, and I am grateful to James everyday for the hard work he puts in at his job. But seriously, us stay-at-home parents are proving our worth through our child's daily development and ensuring they have a bright future.
To me that deserves a whole lot of glory.
Almost every person that has asked me these questions is a man, which I find interesting. In a way it does make sense because as women we know even if we take on different responsibilities, whether we work outside the home or choose to stay at home, we all can agree we are playing an important role. I have been told by many of my friends who have to work to provide for their families, that if they could they would choose to stay at home and raise their children, in a heartbeat. So I do feel extremely lucky to be in my role, but I feel some men don't see it that way. It seems they automatically take the side of the man. In many ways they make me out to be a bit of a freeloader and don't see how important and challenging both our roles are. After James hears all of the questions I am being asked, he always expresses how much he loves that I am raising our Oslo at home and he supports our decision fully. However it does seem we always leave the conversation feeling a bit judged and misunderstood. Ultimately I know we don't have to explain our way of life to questioning parties, but I feel a responsibility to express myself to these people so they can understand a little more the importance of my role and the validity of it.
I feel like the biggest misconception of a parent that stays home is that it's not a job. Maybe people think I wake up, then play a little with the baby, watch television, eat some snacks, and talk on the phone to my girlfriends. I wish! But for anyone who has spent even one day at home with a baby and exclusively looked after a home, cooked, and took care of the daily chores, then you will know that it is in fact a job with many different responsibilities. It's constant work, it can be exhausting and lonely at times, and it can feel like I am taking on too much. There are moments even after the sun goes down and Oslo is asleep, that I still have countless things to finish and that my job is never over. This job is chaotic. Even though I spend most days in lounge wear with a messy bun on my head, it doesn't make my role any less valuable.
I chose and choose everyday to stay at home. Or I should say James and I chose. I wasn't in a 1950s scenario where James worked and I was a housewife because that's what women are meant to do. No, I can honestly say for as long as I can remember I have wanted to be a stay-at-home mum. It was a conversation that came up many times even before we had Oslo, and we both felt strongly that if we were lucky enough to have a baby, then we would work hard to make it happen. So that's what we decided and have been doing for this past whirlwind year. This year has had countless up and downs, yet through all of the emotional battles with myself, Oslo, and many times with James, I truly love this new role I have thrown myself into. Being a mother and one who stays at home gives me so much joy. Yes, there are moments of frustration and complete exhaustion, but this is the first time in my life where I love my job through it all. For me that's the most important thing and makes me feel I don't need to defend myself to anyone, because I made this decision with my partner and it's the best thing for our family.
I love that I get to wake up Oslo every morning and plan a fun, educational day for him, so he can grow, learn and experience all the amazing things in this world. I'm there for every milestone and moment. I'm there anytime he wants or needs me. I'm there through it all, and for me that's why I became a mother and why I chose to stay at home and raise him. He is my greatest achievement and I'm only one year in.
So if you ever have questions as to why a mum would sacrifice building her career, take a massive pay cut, choose to spent 24/7 with her baby, and rarely get time to herself because the job is unrelenting, just remember it's a choice and an incredibly noble one that needs much more respect and credit than it is given.
To me and to many others it is the best job in the world and even though I can't technically ever quit, I know I would never want to.


I can't hardly believe an incredible year has passed and Oslo is one. It sounds so weird to say I have a one year old, but I really love this age right now. Oslo is so adventurous and outgoing, and it seems every little thing he does is entertaining. 

We decided to have a small party to celebrate such a huge milestone. We waited until my older sister Alex arrived from Toronto, three days after Oslo's official birthday to have the party with just family. I wanted to keep the party simple, so I decided to make it a tea party (except replace tea with champagne) and baked tons of treats to enjoy. I love baking so I was thrilled to make Oslo's smash cake and other desserts for the rest of the guests to eat. 

Oslo loved opening his presents one by one, which ended up taking a lot longer than we thought it would. He was so cute with how proud he was when he would slowly rip the wrapping paper off and reveal the gift. After the gifts Alex who is a professional photographer took a few family photos of us as keepsakes. She has been there for most of Oslo's milestones, so it meant so much to have her here for his first birthday. 

Everyone was so incredibly generous to our boy, it really meant a lot. My family lives in Canada so sadly they couldn't be there to celebrate is person, but they sent so much love through their hand written cards and thoughtful gifts for Oslo. We are so thankful for all of the love.

No first birthday is complete without a smash cake for the one year old to devour. So I made a little cake for Oslo to attack. At first he carefully licked the icing off his fingers, but as soon as I cut the cake in half he picked up one half and went to town. He couldn't get enough, it was hilarious! Then of course our dog Pee-wee smelled some cake in the air and came down to see what was going on. Oslo loves to share food so Pee-wee got to join in on the cake smash as well. 

The aftermath was very messy, but so adorable! 

It was such a fun and memorable day, and the perfect way to celebrate the first year with our baby. Watching him grow up and change with each passing month has been so special for us. I am so excited to see what happens this coming year. Happy Birthday 1st Oslo! We love you!

Thank you so much for all of the lovely birthday wishes, we appreciate each and every one. And of course a huge thank you to my very talented sister Alex for capturing this special day. You can see more of her beautiful work at Wild Eyed Photography.