Ava Grace's Closet
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Sunday, October 20, 2019

Twenty One : Dear Izzy

 Dear Izzy,
It surely can't be that my sweet baby girl, the one who blessed me all those years ago, is twenty one today?
I stare at you sometimes.
When you're staring intently at the tv - or at your phone - 
I still sometimes can't believe you are mine.
You see, even though I am your mama, I'm still just a girl. Still someone who is trying to figure it out.
And trying not to mess up you, your brother and sister in the process. #truth

As women, we are just expected to know how to do it all Izzy.
To be strong - to be able to handle EVERYTHING.
But the truth is, we don't have to.
It's ok to ask for help. It's ok to not know what to do next. It's ok to mess up.
You are far too hard on yourself some days sweet girl.
I see how much you want to do well.
Do what's right. "Figure it all out".
But here I am, at forty nine, still trying to do just that.
And its OK.
It's more than OK.

You have far more discipline than I ever had at your age.
Likely more than I have today.
And for that, you will see, you will be whoever you want to be - do whatever you want to do.
If I've learned something in all of my years - it's that no amount of anything equals pure passion and hard work.
And this, you have.
Everything else will come in time.
This I promise you.

My Izzy, if I could have but one wish for you on your twenty-first birthday?
It would be that you enjoy every moment.
Big or small.
And to realize that things that seem so devastatingly important today.
Will mean nothing in the years to come.
Life is a gift because you are in it.
I love you my beautiful girl.
And I'm lucky to be your mama.

Happy Birthday.

Friday, October 4, 2019

Fall Ready with Cleo + A Giveaway!

Loved selecting this second look featuring new fall favourites by Canadian retailer Cleo.
{In case you missed it - you can see my first look here}.
I'm ALL about these sleeves. And yes, you CAN wear stripes - especially flattering vertical ones.
The pants? Pull-on and super comfortable. Think like a legging, only better.
And if you're like me, one can never have enough black trousers.

sunglasses - Prada | sweater - c/o Cleo | pants - c/o Cleo | handbag - Zara | shoes - Vince Camuto
 The fabulous team at Cleo has graciously offered up a chance at a $100 gift card to shop on-line or in one of their many stores across this fair land of ours.

To Enter: 
Leave me a comment telling me what you might choose if you won.
Lots of additional chances for entry below -
Cleo is celebrating their 40th (!) Birthday with 40% off almost everything in the store!
Shop here now.

Best of Luck.

Saturday, August 24, 2019

Friday Favourites : Crayola Take Note! + A Giveaway

For just about as long as I can remember, Crayola has been a mainstay in our home in preparation for Back to School and really all the time.
All of my kiddos loved and still love to colour - to create, to take boring to bold.
Ava just finished a week-long art camp where she learned all about colour.
And Isabella? Entering fourth year at Ryerson and STILL colouring.
I often find her sitting in front of the tv - Crayola Take Note! markers out. Adult colouring book in hand.
She finds it relaxing and swears it helps her focus.
I might have started my 86 year old mother colouring recently as well.

When the team at Crayola Canada reached out and asked if the girls might like to create a pencil case and turn a boring old box into something boldly colourful; they jumped at the chance.
And this mama? I was just happy to see them doing something that doesn't involve screens creative together.
The TakeNote! Products are great for school age and university age alike. Isabella quickly snapped up all her favourites including washable gel pens, erasable highlighters and white board markers that take her from business classes to her after-school tutoring gigs with ease.

And all this fabulous colour helps keep her organized with colour coded notes that are helpful AND way more fun to look at.

Pretty fabulous n'est pas?

Equally as fabulous, the folks at Crayola Canada have graciously offered our readers a chance to win an entire set of Crayola's new Take Note! collection that features specially formulated and functional markers, washable (!) gel pens, ERASABLE highlighters (we're obsessed!) and lots more.
Take Note! is ideal for students who like to colour code notes, daily tasks and goals for maximum productivity - and just as awesome to transform practically any "boring" surface from paper, cloth, metal, plastic or glass.
What school age or university student couldn’t use a  little more colour in their lives?
ARV $85

Enter below and don't forget to leave us a comment telling us why you would love to have Crayola Take Note! products for Back to School.
Open to residents of Canada only.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

This post was sponsored by Crayola. All opinions are strictly my own.
Good Luck! 

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Fall Ready? Navy + Mustard

Super excited to share the first of 3 looks featuring pieces from Canadian retailer, Cleo.
Their stores, located across our great land, over sizing from 0-20 {amen} AND boast a huge petite section as well.
With a focus on items that you can wear to work - or anywhere, their lines offer well-priced, easy to shop looks for every woman.

And while I'm not ready for fall just yet - this look, (with what might be the most comfortable pants I've ever worn) easily transitions from now, well into the cooler months.
All about this paisley print.

tank -c/o Cleo | cardigan -c/o Cleo | paisley print pant - c/o Cleo
Stay tuned for more from this new to me shopping destination.
Who's ready for fall?

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Polka Dot Denim

What's denim, haltered, ruffled and polka-dotted?
This is.
Couldn't get enough of this sweet number - {equally adorable with a flat simple sandle} + the sunshine this past weekend.

I am such a dress girl.
Come summertime - nothing is easier {or faster}
Slip it on and GO.


Dress - c/o eShakti | sunglasses - Prada | clutch - Rebecca Minkoff | sandals - Zara
This is the second of two looks featuring pieces from customizable clothing site, eShakti - {see the first look here}.
Prefer a shorter version? Change it.
Different neckline - change that too.
Love pockets on a dress like I do? Perfect. But if not, remove those.
The possibilities are endless.

Are you a dress girl like me?

Friday, August 2, 2019

Things Ava Says

I promised myself long ago, that I would do my best to always remember the things my children say.
But you see, age and the ongoing busy have a way of making you forget. 
So, I write things down. {brilliant idea right?}
I came across a note in my iphone the other day called Things Ava Says and thought I would share this pricelessness with you today.
Because this is the stuff.
These are the stories I want to tell her about when she's older.
How she made me laugh uncontrollably on our drives home.
How I had more than one what.the.actual.hell moment 
And more than a few where did this child come from?
Driving home from the first day at her new camp earlier this week -
"He totally has a crush on me. I can tell."
Mama: How do you know that Ava?
"He stares at me and always wants to be around me. Then he told me my clay pig was really good".

While watching her favourite dance show - The Next Step -
"I don't even know how she likes Noah, like when you look at him from THAT angle?"
"Mama, a lot them have some "small ones" {holds chest} - did you notice that?".

When she told me last year, rather out of the blue, that she wanted to take guitar lessons -
"It's hard to explain. I'm just more of a guitar person".

When I ask her how you know when someone's in love -
"They're doing a lot of "that" - {points at someone kissing} and whispers - having S-E-X. 

She hears a story about a woman committing a crime -
"She broke one of the 10 commandments!!"

When I call her anything but Ava Grace in public -
"I don't mind - at home you can do it as much as you want. I get embarrassed in front of older people when you say "boo boo" and all that".

And lastly, my personal favourite of late - when she has a big day -
"I gotta wear a pair of lucky underwear!".
My sweet girl.
Don't ever change.

Tuesday, July 30, 2019

Mellow Yellow : Featuring eShakti

I never wear yellow.
Like, ever.
I really didn't think I could wear yellow to be honest. 
But this shade of yellow? With just the slightest tinge of green - it just works.

dress - c/o eShakti | earrings - Forever 21 | sandals - Nine West (no longer available - similiar)
I've had the pleasure of collaborating with eShakti numerous times over the years and without exception, the experience has always been great.
This time was no different - plus I got to choose not one, but two, fabulous pieces including this guipure laced beauty.
Did I mention it has POCKETS? 
So, SO good.

PS - if yellow is not your thing, this pretty also comes in a magnificent baby blue.
I'll share the second look next week!