Celebrate Canada all of July at Canada’s Wonderland #CWBestDay

 

We love heading to Canada’s Wonderland. My teen loves the thrill rides so much so that we are season pass holders. We will get there at least 5 times this year. We have already been twice to the theme park, once to celebrate Mother’s Day and the second visit had us studying the velocity of rollercoasters. The second being a fun school field trip. This long weekend we will be headed back to the park because we can celebrate Canada all of July at Canada’s Wonderland. Who wouldn’t want to celebrate all things Canadian all month long as we celebrate 150 years of Canada?

So what is going on at Canada’s Wonderland?

Besides a great Fireworks display on July 1st there is:

o West Coast Lumberjack Show, Arthur’s Baye – July 1 – 15: Internationally recognized for their daredevil skills, these lumberjacks will entertain guests of all ages while competing in Log Rolling, Tree Climbing, Axe Throwing, Chainsaw Carving, and more!
o Freestyle Ski Aerials, Arthur’s Baye – July 16 – 31: Skiers and Kayakers will fly off a massive ski jump overlooking Arthur’s Baye during Celebration Canada. Will they stick the landing? You be the judge!

o Flying Frontenacs Stunt & Dive Show, Arthur’s Baye – Daily June 24 to Labour Day: Don’t miss the Flying Frontenacs as they stunt dive off a 70ft (21m) platform and display their athleticism on trampolines with incredible flips, turns and dives.

o Cirque Canadien, Wonderland Theatre – June 30 to Labour Day: Prepare to be mesmerized by a magical display of acrobatics, mystique and athleticism as the performers of Cirque Canadien bring you on a journey through the seasons of Canada.

o Starlight: Northern Reflections, Royal Fountain Nightly June 24 to September 2: A breathtaking nighttime spectacle that celebrates the natural beauty of Canada through a stunning display of lighting, music, lasers and water effects, set to the backdrop of 3D projection on Wonder Mountain.

o Fireworks Canada Day – Saturday, July 1: Come enjoy Canada Day with some of the best fireworks in the Toronto area, featuring a unique design set to an original soundtrack and over 6,000 colourful explosions you won’t want to miss it!

o The Great Canadian Fiddle Show, Arthur’s Baye – Select dates in July: Join in the fun in this energetic show celebrating Canadian fiddle music and step dance.

o White Pine Dancers, Arthur’s Baye – Select dates in July: Experience the magic of First Nations History through song and dance. Each performance will captivate you with their gift of song, vibrant colours, flowing movement and thundering drums!

o Celtic Dancers, Arthur’s Baye – Select dates in July: The sights and sounds of traditional Irish dancing and music will take over Celebration Plaza with several performances daily.

o Street Performers, Arthur’s Baye – July 1 – 31: Enjoy the antics of stilt walkers, jugglers, and more in Celebration Plaza throughout the day!

o Earth Rangers, Arthur’s Baye – Select dates in July: The Earth Rangers are returning to the Park during the month of July to educate children and families about biodiversity, sustainable behaviours, and protecting animals and their habitats!

o Live Music & More! Arthur’s Baye – July 1 – 31: Great live bands playing some of Canada’s best tunes from the east coast to the west coast.

o Traditional Canadian Food, Arthur’s Baye – July 1 – 31: Poutine, Nanaimo bars, bacon, maple syrup and so much more!

Remember as well there are 2 new rides to enjoy. My teen enjoyed the Soaring Timbers. We are looking forward to trying the Muskoka Plunge on our next visit. We here this 60 ft tall waterslide complex that features four slides is pretty fun.  These four slides twist and turn for over 300 ft and each slide takes a different path to the bottom. My daughter can’t wait to try it out.

With so many things Canadian a trip to Canada’s Wonderland is a great way to celebrate Canada 150. To get your tickets or to download the Canada’s Wonderland app please visit the Canada’s Wonderland site. 

* We have been season pass holders for years and we pay for our passes. With that said we have been blessed this season by the park in partnering with us to offer some sponsored posts in return for compensation. We really do love being Season pass holders and love all the fun that happens at the park all season long. 

 

The Best Alternate Places to Watch the Fireworks in Toronto

Can you believe our great country is turning 150 this year? With this huge of a celebration, there are lots of places to watch the fireworks on Saturday and the weather forecast is great!

With this list of great fireworks displays, it is hard to decide where to watch the fireworks.  You may not want to get caught in the crowds so I have some alternate spots close to the action that you may want to watch from, so where are the best places to watch the fireworks in Toronto?

 

CN Tower

To celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, the CN tower, a structure that has been around since 1976 will have a spectacular display.  The fireworks are slated to kick off at 10:30 p.m.Want to take in these and skip the crowds? Head for a walk along the waterfront, yes it will be busier than normal but there are lots of small parks where you can spread a blanket and have a great spot away from the crowd.

Nathan Phillips Square

Make your way to City Hall during the long weekend for four consecutive days of Canada Day celebrations. The fireworks will be going off each night! They start at 10:55. My choice for seeing these away from the crowd has to be the top level of the Kensington Market parkade. It has a great view of downtown.

Canada Day conveniently falls on the same day at Ribfest in Etobicoke, so if you want dinner and a show, this is ideal. The fireworks will start at approximately 10 p.m.

Canada’s Wonderland

We are season pass holders so these fireworks that happen at 10 pm are a must for many who are on the north side of the city. If you have been in the park all day and want to avoid the crowd about an hour before they go off grab your blanket and head to the parking lot hill. I promise it is a great view and you are not in the crowd.

Downsview Park

I did these fireworks one year and found the best place to see them was not right in the heart of the park but on the edge. We were away from the crowd and still had a great view.

 

With fireworks from the CN Tower, Ashbridges Bay and Humber Park West. The waterfront will be the best place to be, but where on the water. We are thinking the new Trillium Park based on the old Ontario Place lands may be the best place to get the best place to take in all the shows.

Another good spot that we enjoy is Cherry Beach because it rarely gets a crowd.

Ashbridges Bay

Q107 puts on a great show during the day and with over 2000 blasts, it is a great show to see. When we lived on the east side of the city we always hit this one. The best place to avoid the crowds is the beach by RC Water Treatment Center

Humber Bay Park West

As part of the city’s great line-up of acts for the day, these ones will go off at 10:55 as well. I would say take a walk along the board walk just east of the park and you may have one of the best views  of the city.

Getting Your Back Yard Canada Day Ready

If you’ve visited your local home and garden store in the last couple of weeks, you likely noticed that the seasonal aisle is stocked full of BBQs, patio furniture, and oh-so-fabulous backyard lounge chairs. Everything is red and white and definitely Canada Day ready. It can definitely be tempting as it is to toss out the old stuff that’s been sitting in your garage all winter – or worse, taking a beating outdoors for the past few months – a few simple, budget-friendly tips and tricks will help to make everything old look new again. It’s easy to get your backyard Canada Day ready.

1.      Make old, new again. There’s nothing worse than removing your patio furniture cushions from storage and realizing they’re all stained. Before you think about tossing them, give them a clean. Mix OxiClean Versatile Stain Remover with water and let the cushion covers soak for 1 to 6 hours, depending on the severity of the stain. Wash as normal and your cushions should come out stain-free and look brand new. This is great to get those cushions Canada Day photo worthy. 

2.      Win the weeding war. Did you know that watering your weeds makes it easier to pull them out? If it hasn’t rained in a few days, water your weeds before yanking them. Fun fact: If the soil is moist, you are also less likely to disturb any plants nearby. With all the rain we have had in Toronto this shouldn’t be a concern but might be a great trick for other parts of Canada. 

3.      Save with a little scrubbing. There’s a simple solution for removing dirt, grime, and stains from patio furniture and even your deck. Mix OxiClean Versatile Stain Remover with water (following the instructions on the package) and apply the solution to almost anywhere. Let stand for a few minutes and scrub as needed. It will leave everything looking neat and clean again. There is nothing worse than dirt when you are throwing that family barbecue. 

4.      Wheel your way to wonderful. Re-arranging rather than replacing is also a good way to give new life to your backyard. Consider moving planters and patio furniture to different spots within your space to give it a wonderful new look and feel. Remember, you’re not alone when moving heavy items like lounge chairs… there are wheels to help! Wheeling your furniture around doesn’t eliminate all the hard work but will put less strain on your back.

5. Add Simple decor items.  Have red and white items in the house. Bring them out for your celebration. Did you know those white Christmas lights make for a great late night get together as you watch all the fireworks going off in your neighbourhood.

Be prepared that after a weekend of weeding and wheeling, your back, arms, legs – yes, your whole body – may be aching with pain. Make sure you leave yourself enough time on Sunday evening for a warm bath and a few hours curled up with a good book or movie. Before going to bed, rub and soothe your sore muscles (all of them!) with Rub A535 Extra Strength Heating Cream. The best things about this product is that it works fast and is non-greasy so you can put it on right before going to bed and it won’t stain your sheets.

Have you started prepping your yard for your Canada Day celebrations? What’s different this year?

*I am a #ChurchandDwight ambassador and have been compensated for this post, as always my opinions are my own. 

Seven Years And Counting

In my memories on Facebook today, this memory from seven years ago popped up. Today marks seven years since my daughter and I left Nova Scotia.  For those of you who haven’t been readers for years, you may not know Common Cents Mom had its roots in rural Nova Scotia.  Seven years ago, we boarded the Ocean train and headed west.  I had two goals when I left Nova Scotia. Get my daughter away from the extreme bullying that had plagued her and get her the medical help she would need to recover. The second goal was to start working in the social media area. It was a field in its infancy.  

First, that trip on the Ocean was beautiful. Thanks to a lucky win at an event and an invitation from  Via Canada we have been home twice since we left. Both times we have taken the train. It really is our favourite way to travel. The one thing though about that trip that was not pleasurable was our arrival. We arrived as the G 20 was ending and they stopped the train in Oshawa. Nothing was getting into downtown Toronto or beyond and we were going to Waterloo to stay with friends till we found temporary accommodation. It was a nightmare as we worked our way around the the city but thanks to GO Transit we got to Mississauga and our friends picked us up from there.

Now let’s look at all that has happened in those seven years:

Meeting Goal Number 1:

Getting medical help for my daughter took time. We were here for almost 2 years before she saw the doctor who could diagnose her and get her the resources and medications that would allow her to flourish. It was a battle. A battle we can say we won.  My teen graduated at the top of her class as an Ontario Scholar and Love of Literacy winner. She even got accepted into the program that was first on her list. She will be attending Seneca College soon.

New life goals are on the horizon for her and with her tenacity and creativity, I know she will do great things. As for her mental health. she has been quite stable for the last few years and that has been such a blessing.

Meeting Goal Number 2:

While in Nova Scotia, I worked in a call center and then virtually for Comcast. It was while working for them I saw how vital it was for a brand to have an online presence and to have that presence managed well.  I handled my first customer care case via social while Twitter was still in its infancy. Long before the title community manager and social media manager were known job titles. I grew a blog and community based around personal finance starting the first personal finance chat in Canada long before the banks and many others. They followed the path I started.

My blog has been acknowledged on many sites, and on many lists over the years and I have been blessed to work with many brands.

As for working in the world of Social Media, Donna Marie Antoniadis gave me my first break when she hired me to work for Connected Multi Media, it was there I learned how to do social research, competitive analysis, how to teach social to employee teams., and how to grow communities for brands.  With her, I got to work across seventeen verticals for TeleTech, work with my first app as I worked on Yoddle campaigns, and then work on campaigns for Canadian Beef and the Chicken Farmers of Canada.

Shortly after I broke out on my own as a freelancer. One of my first brands that I pitched and gained as a client was Flipp. You know that app most of us have on our phones today.  I hosted their social launch with a great Twitter Party and shortly after that became their Community Manager for eighteen months. I also worked freelance for brands like Blow Me Cool, Silver Compass, and the last app that I launched was Caddle. It even had four of the Dragons from Dragons Den wanting a deal.

I have also been blessed to speak on the topic of Community Management at Podcamp Toronto, ShesConnected, Blissdom Canada and Be Connected.

Then last fall, after one of my main income sources ( an ad agency) went bankrupt, I got a contract job that I love with Spin Master.  I am doing exactly what I set out seven years ago to do.

I would say we have met both of the goals I set out with for that I am thankful.

Now it time for me to celebrate with my girl as she returns home from writing her last high school exam ever.  Here is to the next seven years and whatever they bring!

 

 

 

Flipp for Canada Day Deals

It’s the last week of school and summer is about to begin for our kids. Parents are preparing for the last week of making lunches, finding the perfect Teacher’s gift and planning the start of summer with Canada Day deals. This week’s deals will hopefully help make the week go by more smoothly. It is the perfect time to do a summer stock up.

Canada Day Deals

No Frills – Valid June 22 – June 28

So many $1.50 deals this week for easy lunch and easy dinner ideas.Canada Day Deals

Canada Day Deals

Freshco – Valid June 22 – June 28

More savings this week with the continuing 150 sales.

Canada Day Deals

Canada Day Deals

Giant Tiger – Valid June 21 – June 27

If you haven’t picked up your Canada Day gear or fashions, don’t worry, you still have time.

Canada Day Deals

Are you looking for a truly Canadian treat for Canada Day or for the last day of school snack for your child’s class? Look no further, Giant Tiger has you covered with their recipe for Proudly Canadian Cupcakes. They look so delicious and would be easy to make. They are on my to Bake list now.

Teacher Gift Ideas

If you haven’t picked up a gift for your child’s teacher, here are a few ideas.

Gift Cards

  • Chapter’s
  • Walmart
  • Michaels
  • Dollarama

You can find a variety of Gift Cards at any of the stores where you shop.

Handmade Gifts

  • Basket’s with school supplies
  • Mugs with coffee of tea samples
  • Bath bombs and lotions

Have you downloaded the Flipp app yet, you are missing out on savings and now cash back. Download Flipp today from Google Play or the App Store and start saving.

How to Save for Summer Fun

 

Taking a summer vacation is an expense that is a luxury for many Canadian families. It’s hard to save when money is tight! For my own family, we have needed a summer getaway, so we came up with a plan that would get us away enjoying Canada this summer for Canada’s 150th birthday.

 

What did we have to do?

 

Set a Goal

While you may not have the time to save big for an extravagant vacation this year, you can definitely plan for the future. How much money do you need? Where do you want to go? You will want to know how much a vacation to your ideal spot is going to cost. My teen and I thought of several places we wanted to visit and decided on some time in Niagara Falls for Canada Day. Can you just imagine the fireworks and the light show?

 

Take a look at hotel rooms, airfares, train fares and the like so you can set a realistic goal.

 

Look for Ways to Save and Earn

When trying to save money for something special like summer fun, you can find ways to save some and earn some. Bring the whole family in on the plan. Teenagers can pick up part-time jobs and learn to earn and save for something they really want to do. They can even help create the summer fun budget. My teen and I plotted our summer adventures a couple of months ago. Then we had to come up with a plan to earn and save.

 

Get a Separate Bank Account

It is easier to save for that special trip if you set up a separate bank account. Recently, we are liking the EQ Bank Savings Plus Account. With their current 2.30% interest rate and the fact that EQ Bank has no monthly fees, your savings can add up quickly. I suggest setting up an automatic payment between your main account and this savings account, that way you can save automagically.  If you deposit a $20

bill every week for 12 months you have $1,040.00 saved for summer fun. Interest on this would be about $23. Would you miss $20 a week? Most of us would not and think it could be earning interest along the way as well.

 

I should let you know EQ bank is a digital bank that provides a great mobile banking experience that helps Canadians save more faster. When you are ready to spend your summer fun money you can simply transfer your money with 5 free Interac e-Transfers® a month and take advantage of the fact that the account has no minimum balance, no monthly fees and unlimited day to day transactions.

 

Set a Budget

We have set a budget for summer fun. Each week we know what is in the pot. There is money for our trip and there has been money set aside for our days at Canada’s Wonderland, the CNE and the local festivals we like to attend.

 

Now you may be a wee bit late to the game for this year but you can always start planning for next year now. Simply open that bank account and watch your savings soar as you plan for and get excited for the vacation ahead.  In the meantime, plan a frugal summer of fun in the city where you live.

 

As a special treat for my readers to get your summer savings started, new accounts opened have the chance to win one of 10 $150 deposits into your new savings account! That’s equal to taking care of a hotel room for a night away.

 

Prepping for Summer Fun with Netflix #StreamTeam

 

Do you remember those long road trips to the cottage with nothing to do but play car games? Do you remember camping and it starting to pour? When I was younger summers were full of books, drive in movies and family movie time. These days you can prep for a summer of Netflix hits and watch where and when you want too.

I love that we can now watch what we want when we want. There is no more waiting till Sunday night for popcorn and movies at 6 pm. Who remember those days? That is when we would settle in to watch the best of Disney. Now there are many Disney flicks on Netflix. You can watch them when you want.

To prep for a summer of Netflix, there are three tools that Netflix offers that help you prep for a summer of fun.

My daughter and I both use individual profiles. This works for us as we have different tastes.  On my account, we have 3 profiles set up.

Here is what my list looks like:

Here is what her list looks like

By each of us having our own must watch list we are ready for watching opportunities. There are some shows I can’t wait to binge watch while I am on vacation next week. We also have a profile for the ones we want to watch together. There is nothing like family bonding over a favorite show. Often our favorite movies get placed in this account.

To best prep for watching opportunities especially if you are going to be offline, you can download that favorite show you want to watch just look for the download icon, Many of the shows and movies can be downloaded. Right now on my commute, I am enjoying the new episodes of Orange is the New Black.

Now haven’t indulged in Netflix yet? You can win 3 months of FREE Netflix over on my Instagram account. Please go and enter, just nominate a friend who needs Netflix as much as you.

Let me know what are you looking forward to watching this summer.

 

 

 

 

Oh Canada! Arm and Hammer Celebrates Canada’s 150th #ChurchandDwight

Ever since I was a little girl there has always been a box of Arm & Hammer™ Baking Soda in my house. There was one in my grandmother’s house as well and if memory serves me well it was even in my great grandmother’s house. Arm & Hammer™ Baking Soda  is something that gets used every day in my house. From cleaning and cooking we use it every day.

I’m sure you’re all familiar with that little orange box in your fridge, freezer or baking cupboard. Arm & Hammer™ Baking Soda has been helping generations of Canadian families cook and clean for decades.

Over the years, the team at Arm & Hammer – with the help of their loyal fans – have come up with more than 100 uses for baking soda and I’m sharing some of my favourites here.

·         Baby, baby, baby.  Baking soda is an all-natural cleaning product that’s gentle enough for even the tiniest baby clothes, yet effective enough for big baby odours. It can be used to treat spills on carpets, clean equipment and toys, deodorize baby bottles and diaper pails as well as freshen stuffed animals to give them a new life.

·         Have you tried it in the bathroom? It helps remove the dirt and grime from bathroom tiles or no-wax floors quickly and easily. It’s also effective at cleaning shower curtains, deodorizing drains and wastebaskets, surface-safe cleaning and for septic system care.

·         Not just for cooking in the kitchen. Yes, Arm & Hammer Baking Soda is a staple baking ingredient as it causes dough or batter to rise, becoming light and porous when heated, but it can also be used in the kitchen to clean lunch boxes, microwave ovens, dishes, pots and pans, recyclables, drains and garbage disposals. Did I mention it removes odours from plastic containers, polishes silver, freshens sponges and stinky sinks, refreshes tea pots, cups and mugs and works great as a fruit and vegetable scrub? It’s also a common deodorizer for fridges and freezers. Changing the box regularly (every 30 days is recommended) helps ensure optimal odour elimination.

·         Don’t fret about your floors. It helps remove unsightly scuff marks without unwanted scratch marks from tile and no-wax floors. It’s also great at neutralizing common household odours and freshens stale-smelling air in your home.

·         Tackles the greasiest of garages. Arm & Hammer Baking Soda safely cleans your car lights, chrome, windows, tires, vinyl seats and floor mats without you having to worry about unwanted scratch marks. It’s also a great deodorizer for car interiors and camper water tanks and tackles oil and grease stains on your garage floor or driveway.

·         Smelly gear no more. Use Arm & Hammer baking soda to clean and deodorize smelly sports equipment like hockey or camping gear, as well as gym bags.

·         Don’t forget to take it outside. It is a must-have for your next camping trip! It’s a dish and pot scrubber, hand cleanser and deodorant, just to name a few. It also cleans your plastic and vinyl pool toys as well as lawn furniture when it’s time to bring them out for the summer and works wonders on barbecue grills.

And that’s not all!

 

Because of the gentle and all natural formula of Arm & Hammer™ Baking Soda, it’s a popular personal hygiene product for many. It can be used as a body and facial scrub, hand cleanser and a refreshing bath soak. It also helps to fight bad breath and body odour and is great for washing hair.

For a full list of these 100 uses of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda and usage instructions, visit www.armandhammer.ca. You’ll find them under the ‘Solutions’ tab.

Giveaway

We’re offering one lucky reader the chance to win 12 boxes of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda – one for every month of the year – in celebration of Canada’s 150th anniversary! Share your favourite baking soda secret for a chance to win!

Giveaway includes the following Arm & Hammer Baking Soda products:

·         Three (3) 250g boxes of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda

·         Nine (9) 500g boxes of Arm & Hammer Baking Soda

Approximate value: $20

*To win leave a comment telling me your favourite way to use baking soda. Giveaway ends July 5th.

Flipp for Canada150 Deals

Canada Day weekend is only a couple of weeks away and now is the time to get ready before everything is gone. Start making those plans for a day of family, friends and fun. What better way to celebrate Canada150 than to show off your Canadian Pride.  Whether you are staying in or going out, these deals will have you seeing red and white.

If you live in or near Toronto, there are many events to help you enjoy the day. Not only are these events happening on July 1, but the entire weekend. Check out this list of free Canada Day events.

Canada150 Deals

Giant Tiger Valid June 14 – June 20

Canada150

Make it a family event when you head to Giant Tiger, they have an assortment of fashion and more to choose from.

CAnada150

Pick up your Canada Day gear today, it will be gone fast.

Walmart Valid – June 15-June 21

Check out these fashionable items from Walmart.

Canada150

Freshco – Valid June 15- June 21

Freshco and Price Chopper’s is having the same fabulous deals. Products are marked pretty low so you don’t want to miss out.

Food Basics Valid June 15-21

If you need all the fixings for a tasty BBQ then head on over to Food Basics for some savings on meat and veggies.

Get 150% off your shopping with the I Want it All event happening at Food Basics until July 1, 2017.

Rebate Coupons

Flipp just got even better than before. Not only does it find you great deals on everything you need but now you get cash back. How cool is that?

Have you downloaded the Flipp app yet, you are missing out on savings and now cash back. Download Flipp today from Google Play or the App Store and start saving.

 

Flipping for Father’s Day

On the third Sunday in June, most families will be getting together to celebrate their Dads. I wish I was, I miss my dad so very much but I am forever grateful that I got to spend the time I did with him.  Sometimes it’s is hard to find that perfect gift for your favourite dad or father figure and we buying a gift we think our Dad will want or will need.

How can we find a special gift for Father’s Day? What does your dad like? What makes him happy, aside from spending time with his family? If you have small children and they like to create, have them make a special handmade gift from the heart.

Here are some awesome gift ideas for the handyman, sharp dresser and those who like to adventure about.

Father’s Day

Best Buy – Valid June 9 – June 17

Here are some great big gadgets for dad. Spend the day out making memories and staying fit and after a long da, sit back and enjoy a movie or two on a brand new TV.

Father's Day

Giant Tiger Valid June 7 – June 13

Set Dad up in style for summer with some additions to his wardrobe.

Father's Day

Canadian Tire -Valid Until Sunday, June 11

Is your dad handy? There are BIG  RED savings this weekend on tools and more.

Canadian Tire Valid June 9 – June 15

Father's Day

Plan a Father’s Day that Dad will love, including a BBQ with all the fixings.

Food Basics – Valid June 8 – June 14

What’s goes great on a BBQ? Yes, that’s right, Chicken and Ribs!

Try this quick and easy recipe for a sweet BBQ sauce.

  • 1 cup ketchup
  • 2 finely chopped garlic cloves
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • 3/4 cup Balsamic vinegar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt and pepper

Mix all of the ingredients together and add the meat.

Have you downloaded the Flipp app yet, you are missing out on savings. Download Flipp today from Google Play or the App Store and start saving.