How to Get Your Canadian Passport Faster

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How to get a Canadian passport quicklyCanada is a country of 33 million people and we all seem to love to travel.  Almost 60 percent of us own passports.

A Canadian passport allows you, as a Canadian citizen, to exit and enter Canada  to and from other countries. Issued by Passport Canada they are valid for 5 years (unless it is a child under 3, they are valid for 3 years).

Since travel rules have changed so much in the last 10 years they are the easiest document to own to prove citizenship and can be one of the documents required if you are traveling into the US.

Passport Canada is trying to make it easy to get a passport and are trying to make the long lines at the Passport office disappear. 

Butchart Gardens Canada - Gardening Ispiration

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Butchart GardensI love looking at gardens to draw inspiration on what I should do with my own little patch of dirt.

Butchart Gardens in British Columbia Canada was amazing for me to visit. 

Open year round it is always spectacular but I took these photos in August a few years back.

The original story of how the garden was conceived and created reminds me that you can turn almost anything into a thing a beauty if you put your mind to it.

Travel The World For Free (Almost)

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Double Decker buses in London 2
Who hasn't heard of someone that always seems to be traveling and living life full of foreign adventures.

How do they do it?

You might think that you just couldn't live this life style because you don't have the cash needed but many adventurers are doing it on a shoe string and are having the time of their lives.

Surprisingly it can be very cheap to travel the world, you just need to know what the secret is.

The Ultimate Guide to Tipping

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Ultimate guide to tippingI am the first to admit that I don't let go of money easily. I hold onto a dollar until it screams and when I do spend it I want top quality for my buck.

That being said I have no problem tipping and have taught my children from a young age why it is important to tip and how much they should generally tip.

But it can get a bit confusing. Truthfully you don't want to under tip but you also don't want to be throwing your money around. So how much should you be tipping the doorman at the hotel and what is the norm for a hairstylist?

Newspaper Baskets

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Tomatoes in newspaper basketA few years ago I put in three cherry tomato plants... three. They went wild and wouldn't stop producing. 

I wanted to give the extra tomatoes away to family and friends and needed little baskets that they would not have to return.

I came up with this newspaper basket that is ideal since it didn't cost me any extra money and could be easily recycled.

This little newspaper basket can be used for all sorts of small produce so keep it in mind the next time you have a bumper crop.

Is the Luxury Market Dead?

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Vintage luxuryLuxury, the lovely expensive things that only the rich can afford. 

Hotel rooms with stunning views and down filled pillows, 5 star restaurants with exotic ingredients and sparkling crystal on the tables, leather goods from the finest Italian shops are just a few of the images that can come to mind when you are talking about luxury.

But does the luxury market even exist anymore or by trying to expand the markets so the middle class could afford their products have the makers and providers of luxury goods ruined it all.

Orange Cat - Fruit Sculpture

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Cat made from orangeI will admit that I did not design this but as much as I searched I could not find an original source or instructions on how to make this orange cat so I did it myself.

Fruit and vegetable carvings are a great way to garnish a tray for a party or a special occasion. 

This silly cat would look great at a buffet on a tray of fruit salad, citrus desserts, or cut up oranges at a breakfast buffet.

You don't need a lot of fancy equipment to make this handsome fellow, a sharp knife and a small paring knife will do it.

Perfect for all the feline lovers that you know.
Birthday Cake with candlesBirthdays! The best days of a child's life. 

How do you celebrate the occasions without spending a ton of money?

Ask any adult and they will tell you that their best birthdays growing up had nothing to do with what they got but how they were celebrated.

Parties are great for kids but you want to have other ways to make your little ones birthdays special.

I have 25 ideas of how you can make your children's birthdays super memorable while still making it very easy on your wallet.

How to Cut and Peel a Peach

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Cutting peaches
Is there any other fruit that has so many saying regarding it? 

She's a Georgia peach, pretty as a peach, peaches and cream complexion.

While peaches are delicious their skin can cut tender mouths and for very young children it is best to peel them.

Peeling peaches is actually quite easy if you know the trick.
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