Tickling my fancy

The animated holiday display windows at Printemps, a high end department store in Paris. [h/t: Martini's for Milk]

Doctor Who BBC One Christmas Ident 2009 with David Tennant


And the LOL sticky label winner is ...

Official list of contest entrants:

1 Betsy Mae
2 Sea
3 Lara
4 Jacquie
5 Just An Ottawa Dad
6 Jemrah
7 Miss Marble
8 Jen_nifer

Random number generation by random.org:

Congratulations Jacquie!

Thanks to everyone for playing!


Involvement vs success

Involvement in a child's education isn't restricted to joining the PTA. These articles at suite101.com and essortment.com discuss a variety of ways for parents and care-givers to be involved in a child's education.

The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


Contest round-up

Two great blogs, two great give aways!

And while you're feeling lucky, don't forget my contest where you could win Label Out Loud (LOL) Sticky Labels from Mabel's Labels!


MLF&H: Win LOL Sticky Labels

As a Mabel's Labels agent, I'm happy to offer you a chance to win Label Out Loud (LOL) Sticky Labels from Mabel's Labels. (Shipping charges may apply.)

To enter:
1. Click through to look at the Label Out Loud (LOL) Sticky Labels on the Mabel's site.
2. Click on "make my custom labels."
3. Click on the "Design Motif" tab.
4. Leave a comment on this post, telling us what your favourite design is.
5. Your name will be entered in a random draw for a coupon code for LOL Sticky Labels! (Shipping charges may apply.)

It's that easy!

Contest closes Monday, December 7th, 2009 at 11:59pm (EST). Winner will be announced at http://leesvoice.blogspot.com/ by end of day on Tuesday December 8th, 2009. The winner will have 24 hours to claim the prize.

If you win, I’ll need a valid e-mail address from you, for the purpose of sending you the coupon code.

The coupon must be redeemed by Dec 31, 2009.

Only one entry per person, please!


MLF&H: One week only! 10% off Mabel's Labels purchases in Dec 2009

Edited to add:

This offer has expired. I will post future promotions, coupons and give-aways on this blog.

I'm a Mabel's Labels Buzzmama and I receive free products for my involvement in the program. I'm also a Mabel's Labels web affiliate and I earn a commission if you use the following link to purchase your Mabel’s Labels – Labels for the stuff kids lose!®

- holiday gift tags
- holiday return address labels
- Teeny Tags™
-clothing labels for camp and school
- child ID wristbands and more!

E-mail MabelsAgent at NSCcards dot com
with a subject of "coupon"
to receive your coupon code for
10% off your next Mabel's Labels purchase!#

# By sending your e-mail address you agree to receive periodic newsletters from your Mabel's Labels agent. You may unsubscribe from these newsletters at any time.
Coupon code valid between Dec 01 and Dec 08 2009.



MLF&H: Cyber sale

Mabel's Labels is having a Cyber sale!
(The sale ends at 11:59pm PST November 30, 2009.)

In honor of Cyber Monday Mabel’s Labels will have limited-time sale on the following products:

  • The discount will automatically be applied at check out.
  • Sale discounts may not be combined with other offers, promotions or coupons.
  • Discount not valid on previous orders
  • There are no limits on how many items can be ordered at the sale price.
  • The order must be placed by Internet or phone and paid by credit card or cheque to qualify for this promotion


Bad messages from good movies

Love the post Top 10 Bad Messages From Good Movies over at GeekDad.

My favourites:

6. Kissing sleeping women you don’t know will wake them up and lead to them falling in love with you (from Sleeping Beauty and Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs).

5. If you’re a really good person, but in a lousy situation, simply wait around and eventually good things will just happen to you (from Cinderella).

3. Even tough women who aren’t afraid to fight aren’t as important as the men they fight alongside (from the Star Wars movies).

2. It’s OK to completely change your physical appearance and way of life for the person you love, even if he makes no sacrifices at all (from The Little Mermaid).

Read the full list with complete commentary over at GeekDad.


Probability of discontinuation vs product value

When I find a product I really value, chances are the manufacturer will discontinue it.


The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


MLF&H: Bookplates

From time to time, people will ask me if Mabel's Labels sells bookplates or booklabels. While the answer is technically, no, with a little creativity custom bookplates can be yours!

Get creative with some personalized return address labels!

Here are some ideas to get you started:


MLF&H: Getting creative with holiday gift tags!

Looking for creative ideas on how to best use your personalized holiday gift tags?

Look no further. Check out these photos of the myriad of uses of personalized holiday gift tags. Including:

Get yours today!

(Available until December 31st, 2009.)

For every order of holiday products, the Mabel team will make a donation to a local family in need of support this holiday season.


WGC's take on the "Save Local TV" and "Stop the TV Tax" Campaigns

The Writers Guild of Canada (WGC) (the organization that represents close to 2000 writers of drama, comedy, animation, childrens and documentary programs) made a video trying to give some context to the "Save Local TV" and "Stop the TV Tax" Campaigns.

[h/t: Dead Things on Sticks]


The square root of four is rainbows

Bragging rights if you can tell me where this quote is from.


The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


Flashpoint season finale

Here's a review for tonight's season finale of Canada's own Flashpoint!

In case you missed it, last Sunday Flashpoint won seven Gemini Awards, including Best Dramatic Series!

Belated shout out to Mark Ellis, Stephanie Morgenstern and all of the talented creatives involved with the show!


Oversold the message


The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


QOTD: Whatever you give a woman, she will make greater

Does anyone know who the orginal author for this is?

Whatever you give a woman, she will make greater.
If you give her sperm, she'll give you a baby.
If you give her a house, she'll give you a home.
If you give her groceries, she'll give you a meal.
If you give her a smile, she'll give you her heart.
She multiplies and enlarges what is given to her.
So, if you give her any crap, be ready to receive a ton of shit.
[h/t: Sanrda Bell-Lundy]


Battle of the blades - Can you do it?

I admit it. I love Battle of the Blades. I hope Marie-France gets well soon, perhaps in time for the final show.

I think that Pelletier's "Can you do it?" YouTube clips are a fabulous idea! Learn a little figure skating while we enjoy watching figure skating! Just in time to warm up for the Olympics too.

What I find frustrating is how these clips are titled with the prefix "Battle of the blades - Can you do it? Challenge ..." Which means the rest of the title is often hidden. I've inventoried the ones I could find below, with more meaningful titles:

Oct 7: Spinning

Oct 14: Waltz Jump

Oct 22: Arabesque

Oct 28: Edges

Nov 4: Turns

Nov 10: Toe Picks and Jumps

The question, however, still remains: Can you do it? (Me, not so much.)


Lest we forget


The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.



MLF&H: You live life in Technicolour, why not label in full colour too?

Introducing full colour Label Out Loud Sticky Labels!

Just like Mabel's Classic Sticky Labels, Label Out Loud (LOL) Sticky Labels are fantastic for toys, bottles, dishes and more, providing that famous Mabel's Labels durability in an exciting NEW look!

And just like the Stickies, LOL stickies are dishwasher/microwave-safe and UV resistant.

The name on the labels can be whatever you like to a maximum of 20 characters. Names are printed exactly as you type them.


The only constant in life is ...


The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


Handwashing vs hand cream


The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


Pumpkin carving for easy candle access [rerun]

[originally posted Oct 27, 2008]

Have you ever burned your hand trying to get a candle in or out of a jack-o'-lantern? Try cutting your pumpkin 'lid' a little differently.


  • pumpkin
  • carving knife

  • Prep the pumpkin for carving.


  • Mark where you're going to cut the 'lid.' The front (shown as top of the photo) will be a semi-circle, while the back will extend all the way down the back of the pumpkin.


  • Using your favourite method, clean out and carve the pumpkin.


  • Now you're able to put a candle in through the back of the pumpkin, with much less risk of getting burned!

    pumpkin_carving_04 pumpkin_carving_05

[Remember to keep children away from lit flames and matches!]

[Cross-posted at Craft Day.]


Law of parking

Is there a law of parking that states "no matter where you park in an empty parking lot, another car will quickly come in and park so close to you that you can barely open your door wide enough to get out of your vehicle?"

There should be.

The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


Car seats for big kids

Is your child:

  • heavier than their peers, and you feel uncomfortable putting them in a car booster seat at such a young age?
  • too tall to stay in their car seat but too light to go in a car booster seat?
  • so precious to you that even though they meet the specifications of using a car booster seat, you wish to keep them in a five-point harness?
If you answered yes, to any of the above questions you are going to need to find a special car seat for big kids.

With the help of the kind folks at Transport Canada, here's a list of seats that may be useful to you.

Car seats for big kids comparison
Britax FrontierApex Safety 1stGraco Nautilus
5pt specs


booster specs40-100lbs
additional notes

- "no tangle" belts
- side impact protection
- quick
adjust headrest (harness repositions w/o rethreading)

- converts to backless booster

This information is provided for your convenience. Confirm details with product manufacter and Transport Canada.

If you have questions about child safety or other road safety issues, please contact Transport Canada directly.


Mabel awards

Oscars, Tonys, stand aside boys! Here are The Mabels!

This one's for you, our wonderful, loyal customers! We're celebrating those of you who have been with us the longest, spread the word about us online and off, or who simply use our products in marvellous ways.

Each of the five winners will receive a $100 Mabel's Labels' gift certificate and a set of 45 limited edition sticky labels (not sold anywhere!). Plus, those with blogs, Twitter pages and websites will be eligible to display a graphic of their 'Mabel' Award online.

Read all the details here.

Deadline for entries is midnight EST, November 1st, 2009.




The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


MLF&H: Holiday gift tags are back!

For every order of holiday products, the Mabel team will make a donation to a local family in need of support this holiday season.

Personalized Holiday Gift Tags

Perfect for the holiday you celebrate! Gift Tags are round tags that are personalized with any information or message you like.

Added bonus: If your kids think that your handwriting looks similar to Santa's, keep them on their toes by getting St. Nick a set of these labels!

Designed to stick to presents, Holiday Gift Tags come in four great designs: Festive Forest, Holly Jolly, Twinkle Twinkle and Winter Wonderland.

Available until December 31st, 2009.

Personalized Holiday Return Address Labels
By popular demand, Holiday Return Address Labels are back in a fun snowflake design. Printed on evergreen, rosy red or winter night with white writing. Colours sold separately or in a mixed pack.

Available until December 31st, 2009.


One cold summer

one_cold_summerIn case there was any doubt, here's proof from a local retailer that this has been one cold summer!


Back to school tip 8: picture day

While you're going through your child's back to school wardrobe, make sure you've got something that could pass for picture day. Some schools have picture day as early as the second week!

Typically, photographers ask the children to wear a top of a solid colour. (Which can be more difficult then it sounds. It seems all shirts have big designs on them now!) The last thing you want to do in September is go back to the malls to get more clothes!


Back to school tip 7: get an extra pair of shoes

While you are doing your back to school shopping, don't forget to pick-up an extra pair of shoes. Most daycares and schools ask for children to have a pair of "indoor" shoes, so the kids don't track the mud and leaves and snow into the classroom.

Don't forget to put your child's name in them too! (There are only so many styles that come in preschooler sizes!)


Back to school tip 6: give some thought to lunch

Whether it's obtaining a laptop lunch system so you can make adorable bento box style litterless lunches or it's finding a favourite recipe for homemade granola bars, one really needs to give the lunch routine some serious thought.


Aside from wanting to give your kids something yummy and nutritious to look forward to, you definitely don't want some of your 15 minutes of fame coming from being featured in an article like this one: "Grossest Lunches."

According to Nadine's research, lunchtime no-nos include:

  • frozen sandwiches
  • liverwurst and
  • dog food!


Back to school tip 5: first day jitters

Nadine Silverthorn over at Sweetmama.ca has some terrific tips for little helping little ones overcome the anxiety associated with the First Day of School Milestone. These include deep breathing, visualizations, art therapy and acting out the fear. (She describes these things in a way that you can implement them with your child!)

For older kids, Catherine Wakelin (Sweetmama.ca) and Christine Carter (Science For Raising Happy Kids) share some tips for transitioning back to school.




The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.


If only everything in life were like this

ring_for_serviceSaw this at a restaurant.

If only everything in life were this clearly signed and set-up for our convenience!


Back to school tip 4: read Ask Moxie cont

Go back to Moxie's place and read her Back to school post. She and her wise readers have some interesting, experience tested thoughts about back to school.


Back to school tip 3: read Ask Moxie

Go over to Moxie's place and read Making Life Good For Your Kids' Teachers.


  • If you want to have an extended conversation with your child's teacher, please make an appointment so your child's teacher can schedule his time and plan accordingly.
  • Please, please, please thank the teachers who take the time to meet with you for extended conferences.
  • Teaching is a lonely profession with few extrinsic rewards. A quick email saying, "Hey, that was such a cool project! My son really enjoyed it!!!!" takes 2 minutes to write and will be remembered by your son's teacher for years.
  • Tell your child's principal when your child's teacher does great work.

And especially:
  • Your child's teacher is a partner with you in caring about your child's learning. Treat them as a partner, not a boss or a servant.


Show me the moolah!

Mabel MoolahMabel Moolah™ is back!

Spend $80 or more on your next order and collect $25 in Mabel Moolah to use towards your next purchase!* It’s as easy as that. (Canadian and American orders placed between August 15 - September 15, 2009.)

* Read all the fine print at Mabel’s Labels – Labels for the stuff kids lose!®!

Disclosure: I'm a Mabel's Labels Buzzmama and I receive free products for my involvement in the program. I'm also a Mabel's Labels web affiliate and I earn a commission if you use the following link to purchase your Mabel’s Labels – Labels for the stuff kids lose!®



Back to school tip 2: listen to Ann Douglas

Ann Douglas has put together a fabulous post titled "Back to School Guide: A Parent's Guide to Surviving the Season of Shopping for Hot Gadgets, Cool Clothes, and School Supplies."

Topics of her post:

  1. Rethink school-year routines.
  2. Get your kids back on a school-year sleeping routine before it's time to head back to school.
  3. Establish the shopping ground rules before you hit the mall.
  4. Keep your schedule as free as possible during the first week back at school.
  5. Keep things simple on the mealtime front.
  6. Take time for yourself.
  7. Set some goals for yourself as a parent.


Back to school tip 1: label everything

What do I need to label for back to school?

Good question. It's always a good idea to have labels / bag tags / teeny tags for:
  • backpacks / book bags
  • pencil cases
  • lunch bags / boxes
  • water bottles
  • pencils / pens / markers
  • outerwear (jackets / hats / mittens / gloves)
  • sports equipment
  • gym clothes
  • shoes / boots
For preschoolers:
  • Teachers and daycare staff alike typically recommend that you label EVERYTHING you want to come back home with your child. That includes shoes, shirts, socks and underwear. Apparently it's not uncommon for a preschooler to have no idea what their underwear looks like.
Bonus tip:
  • Have your child try on their clothing for size BEFORE you label their clothes. The last thing you want to do is spend time (and labels) labeling everything all up, only to find the shoes you bought last week don't fit anymore!
Double your iron-ons! shoe labels mabel's icon on a Klean Kanteen Tag-Mates™ Skinny-Minis™ Skinny-Minis™


Where grape juice intersects toddler


The code for this doodle and other doodles you can use on your blog can be found at Doodles.