3 small changes for 2014 that have changed our lives

For 2014, Ron and I wanted to make a few time saving changes to make our lives even more enjoyable, and by this I mean simply cutting out a few things we do not like doing and replace that time with something we do enjoy. We also needed to free up some time, since our kids are at the ages where they are very demanding of our time. Yes, I hate to break it to you parents of babies, toddlers and preschoolers, but the tween years aren't much less demanding of your time. We currently have a 7 day a week extracurricular schedule going on between two kids - Monday consists of soccer practice, Tuesday is volleyball practice, Wednesday is a different soccer practice, Thursday is volleyball games and then soccer practice, Friday is swimming lessons, Saturday is also swimming lessons and a soccer game, Sunday is goal keeping clinic and on top of that it's soccer try-out season for next year, with tournaments on the horizon, plus there's always various kids school functions not mentioned, birthday parties, homework, a little time for a social life and oh, we run a business too! I'm sure if you have kids in this age group you can relate and probably have a family chaos schedule that is just as demanding or one that is even more-so demanding than ours. Thankfully we are lucky enough to run our business from home, so we don't have a commute - a change we made last year, which drastically improved our lives! There's really not much time left at the end of day for much else, and especially not much time for tasks in which we do not enjoy - yes grocery shopping and house cleaning, I'm directing that at you! Here's what we did:

Change #1 - we started grocery shopping online! 

Thanks to my dear friend Roo, who happens to be the founder of the Oops! Sheet / Oops! Undies and Roo Rain Gear (awesome rain gear made from recycled bottles!), we finally placed our first order at spud.com. It was super easy, fun and wow, what a time saver! We look forward to placing our weekly orders. We care a lot about the health of our family and buying organic, GMO free and local are 3 of our top priorities. Spud makes this very easy and there's even perks! For our first order, we were given a referral code from Roo (thanks again Roo!) for $20 off! Now, we have our own referral code that we get to share, and guess what?! Just from a share on my personal facebook, we have had the pleasure of getting over $200 in free organic groceries because for each person we refer, we get $20 towards another order. Spud delivers right to our door, every Thursday (delivery days vary depending on location) and there's no hidden fees or membership cost / contract or anything sneaky like that. Even the shipping is free if you spend $70, otherwise I think it's only $3.50, which is likely less than what you're spending on gas unless you walk to your grocery store. The time saved from driving to and from / shopping in store / standing in line / loading and unloading groceries, plus gas $ saved has made this change very much worthwhile for us. Spud.com currently delivers to Vancouver and the Lower Mainland, Fraser Valley, Victoria, Nanaimo, Calgary, Seattle, San Francisco and Bay Area, Los Angeles and Orange County. If you or someone you know happens to reside in one of these areas and wish to save time as well and grocery shop online, please use our referral code:

spud.com coupon code for $20 off your first order: GARRON


^ Plus they have this awesome deal for your first order, which of course we took full advantage of, where you get $40 of organic produce for only $20. We only ask ourselves why we didn't do it sooner?! Not having to worry about hitting the grocery store on such a regular basis has been a wonderful thing and hopefully you will get to try it out as well and see why we love it so much! 

Change #2 - we hired a house cleaner

After putting it off for quite some time, shortly after the new year started we hired a wonderful lady, referred by another dear friend, Wendy of Wake Up SUP / Wendy Weymann Yoga (no, not all our friends have such awesome businesses and multiple websites, but yes, lots do!). We look forward to every Wednesday, where we get to come home to the scent of a clean house. It is absolutely a dream. We had so little time for cleaning, that we were really just touching the surface when it came to cleaning. Cleaning the hidden areas like under the bed or on top of our pendant lamps was not just overlooked, there wasn't time for it. Not only that, my stovetop, which I had thought for years had the finish permanently burnt off, is just like new again! Now, not having to worry about giving our house that big weekly clean, and leaving it for someone who does an amazing job focusing on just that once a week has improved our lives in so many ways - no more dreading cleaning after a long day, no more feeling bad about the dust our kids may be breathing in while they are sleeping, just a clean fresh home to live in. 

Change #3 - we got a family pass at our local leisure centre

Admittedly, we actually do love our busy lives. We are known by our friends as a go-go-go family and whenever we have some free time, that's when we go even more - hiking, paddle boarding, golfing, weekend getaways or family vacations are a few things we have been known to do in our spare time. We like to live life to the fullest and there's a small part of us that misses that commute. Weird I know, but having a home based business can make you feel a little like a hermit if you let it. We feel lucky to live on the West Coast where we have an abundance of outdoor activities right in our own backyard, but since since this area is also known as 'the Wet Coast' - yes, it rains a lot here, we find great joy in getting out at our local rec centre, when the weather doesn't seem too inviting. Our local facility has a few rinks, racquet courts, pools, hot tub, waterslide, gym, and my personal favourite, the sauna, plus all kinds of great classes - yoga, TRX, and spinning to name a few. We socialize, exercies, relax and heal there. It's a place where my kids have learned to swim and skate and have participated in all kinds of programs from babysitting courses to obstacle courses. For just $944.20 / year it's pretty good value to have unlimited access to such a great facility and all the amenities for our family of 4. Of course they offer great drop-in rates too. If you're also in Mission, or visiting the area, check out this website for more information. We often go twice a day during the winter months - to workout in the morning, and swim / relax in the evening when time permits.

Mission Leisure Centre

Anyways, that's just a few changes we've made in our lives since 2014 began. Hopefully we've inspired you to do something for yourself and your family to improve your life just a little bit!

Now, we'd love to know - what sort of family time saving / life improvement tips do you have to share? Comment and let us know!

From Our Blog

We're retiring from shows plus, a shipping update

The title says it all, and it's true. It's time, and it feels right. After 14 seasons, we have decided it's time to wrap up the Craft Show and Christmas Market chapter in our lives and really start to enjoy the holidays. Our kids are getting older and through the years we have loved doing these shows, but the only downside it that it has also meant being away from our kids for a few weeks and for a very fast paced December served with a side of exhaustion for us all.

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