I'll Follow You Anywhere

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I’ll admit, in the past when I heard the word “baby moon” I couldn’t help but cringe – it seemed like an indulgence reserved only for super privileged pregnant couples, and I never really saw it being a priority for me personally. Don’t people have better things to do when planning to bring a new human into this world?!

The thing is, now that I’m here with three months to left in my pregnancy and a constantly growing belly that has me just a bit off-balance at all times, I get what all the fuss is about. Being pregnant is such an incredible feeling, but it can also feel like your losing your whole body (and existence) to a tiny human living under your skin. I have really struggled with my newfound limitations body-wise, and travelling in the second trimester before I got too big to even sit in a car comfortably for half an hour (I’m getting there) ended up being really important to me. If you’re craving some time out of town, why not take a trip while you’re still feeling up to it?

I also think it’s really necessary to celebrate. To celebrate your incredible body, the massive shift in life seasons, to honour your past and let yourself have one last vacation that’s free of child-related worries before the future arrives. I went from chuckling to myself about the concept of baby moons to insisting it was something I needed to do almost as soon as I got pregnant. Yes, travel with babies and kids is totally possible and can be an amazing experience, but it’s still not the same as taking a trip on your own or with a loved one.

In the end, I planned two pre-baby escapes for good measure – a long haul adventure to Hawaii with my bff Bianca (post on that coming soon!) and a smaller, local trip to PEC right here in Ontario with my little sister. What these two trips taught me: It doesn’t matter how far you go, just that you allow yourself to go at all. I actually enjoyed being closer to home for a shorter trip more with how pregnant I’ve been feeling lately, and I can’t stress enough how important it was to me to give myself a special window of time like this to celebrate, close off the past, and look forward to the future. Whether you’re hopping a plane to an exotic island or just planning a staycation at home in your own city, give yourself (and perhaps someone you love dearly) this special moment to pause and reflect. After all, moments like these will never exist in quite the same way again after you officially become a mom.

Why PEC //

Prince Edward County is a wine lover’s paradise, but this will be me second trip there without drinking and in my books it’s just as good either way!

The county can be overcrowded in the Summer months, so I actually prefer to go up in the autumn – the leaves are breathtakingly beautiful on the drive between towns, harvest season yields all sorts of delicious local goodies, and sweater weather has never felt quite so cozy. It’s also a short distance from Toronto, so it’s not too big a commitment travel-wise if you’re based in Ontario.

Where to Stay //

I’ve stayed in multiple spots all over the county but this trip we went with The Drake Devonshire, a small boutique hotel complete with a lakefront view and amazing restaurant (I recommend the brunch!) When we checked in there were hot cookies waiting beside the bed and we were told how to dial pints of ice cream up to our room if needed, so yeah, basically a pregnant person’s dream come true!

How to Get There //

A short 2.5 hour drive from the city, travel by car is really the best way to get to the county, and once you arrive up there I find driving from town to town on the beautiful country roads is one of my favourite parts of the landscape. We were lucky enough to borrow a Porsche Panamera hybrid for our trip, and it was SUCH a fun (and eco friendly) way to see the sights.

A few of my favourite pastel places //

Bloomfield Beauty Co. // Where do I even start with this incredible spot? Located in Bloomfield as the name suggests, this spa escape is seriously heaven on earth. Owned by two talented sisters, you can get everything from massages to pedicures, all served with a side of tea (or bubbly if you prefer!) We spent an entire afternoon there and still didn’t want to leave!
BluBoho // My favourite Toronto jewelry shop now has an outpost in PEC and it’s gorgeous.
Hinterland Winery // The best bubbly in the province! I grabbed a bottle to pop after baby Garrison joins us in the new year.
County Collective // This spot is SO cute, just make sure you check their Instagram before heading over as they’re often closed off-season.
Fete beach // Located in the same Bloomfield building as County Collective and BluBoho, this gorgeous shop is another must-see on the tour of pretty pastel places!
County Yum Club // On top of seasonal goodies this roadside restaurant serves vegan corn dogs. Need I say more?
Grange Winery // This place makes incredible wine and cider with the prettiest designs, but they also serve local craft soda so you have something to sip while your non-pregnant companions get tipsy wine tasting.
Slickers Ice Cream // You have to try the burnt marshmallow here, and don’t worry, the Picton location stays open all year round!
Coriander Girl // Another Toronto export, this space is shared with county apothecary brand Sunday’s Company, and their shop together is absolutely gorgeous, filled with plants, dry brushes, skincare and more. I highly recommend taking a locally-sourced bouquet home with you on your last day!
The Vic // Did someone say golden milk latte? This coffee shop in downtown Picton has amazing baked goods and lots of caffeine-free hot bevvie options if that’s your thing (they have real caffeinated tea and coffee too, don’t panic!)
Kinsip Spirits // Fun fact – you can get a shot of whisky infused maple syrup instead of spirits and it’s absolutely delicious + totally booze free!

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Special thanks to The Drake Devonshire, Porsche Canada and Bloomfield Beauty Co. for making this trip so magical

I'll Follow You Anywhere

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Hold on tight – this is going to be a BIG post, because we seriously can’t stop gushing about our time at The June Motel!

From the moment we spotted this property-in-progress on Instagram we’ve been dying to go, and when it finally opened this Summer we booked a getaway the first moment we could. With the help of Zipcar (hello BMW!) we set off on our last-minute road trip to Prince Edward County, but not one of us knew just how good it would be.

The following three days were a blur of bubbly, tarot readings, yoga, incredible food, craft beer and more bubbly. Our hosts at The June Motel welcomed us with an epic cheese board, and from that moment everything from the bonfire (complete with epic s’more bar) to their adorable County drive tours were above and beyond.

There was so much to do every single day that we had a tough time deciding what should make the cut, plus our room was so unbelievably cute that we had a hard time leaving the hotel! We’ve listed our favourite stops below, plus a few of the places we missed, and you can book our room here!

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Three Days in the County, RAOP style //

Day 1 //
Wine @ — Hinterland
Dinner @ — Miller House at Lake on the Mountain Resort

Day 2 //
Snacks @ The Drake Devonshire
Lunch @ The Courage
Stopped @ Flora Lora Flower Farm
Dinner and Drinks @ Parsons Brewery

Day 3 //
Yoga @ The June Motel
Breakfast @ The Picton Harbour Inn and Lighthouse Restaurant
Stopped @ Vicki’s Veggies
Lunch @ Norman Hardie

Spots we were eyeing but didn’t quite make it to: Slickers Ice Cream, Kinsip Spirits, County Collective, Fifth Town Cheese, County Cider, Prince Eddy’s Brewery.

One of the hardest parts of heading off on a fun vacation like this is leaving behind my beloved pup Honey, but thankfully I’ve found the perfect home away from home for her.

We’d never tried a dog boarding option before (because Honey is so sweet and low energy that all my friends always beg to take her), but this time around I decided to get out of my comfort zone and give her a play-filled vacation while I was off doing the same. Enter Soulmutts, a pup paradise where dogs get to live a “pack lifestyle”, constantly off leash and surrounded by four-legged pals. This place has really gone the whole nine yards – with a big hay-filled yard the dogs can access anytime, an acre-long private forest park that’s fully fenced, and specially designed transport vehicles to make sure the pups are safe and secure. Each dog is screened for aggression and proper vaccinations, which is a big comfort as a dog mom who’s had issues with other dogs attacking her pup at public parks.

The best part about the whole experience was the care and attention that the Soulmutts team gave each and every pup. Honey was introduced to the “pack” one by one so none of the dogs got overwhelmed, and I was sent adorable updates via email and Instagram photos throughout the week.

I’ve always been unsure how Honey would do in a group setting 24/7 because she’s a bit older and slower than she once was, but honestly I felt bad bringing her home after all the fun she had, and I can’t wait to take her back for another staycation!

Some of Honey’s current favourite things:

Chocolate Donut Squeaky Dog Toy
Purple Rope Dog Leash
Pink Elephant Rope Dog Toy
Plush Pig Doggie Chew Toy

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Dress Up

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So many wonderful things in this world come in shades of yellow – cartoon smiley faces, the sunshine, daisies, and of course, lemonade. Way back around Christmas time I decided this summer was going to be my lemonade summer, painted in sun-dripped happy hues with sparkle emojis dancing around my everyday.

Of course life isn’t always how we plan it, and so far this Summer has been testing, unstable, busy, filled with massive success and a seemingly endless to-do list of tasks. I’ve spent a lot of time outside, exploring the city and beyond, and though there have been a lot of pretty pastel moments, there have also been dark days clouded with grey. I’m starting to recognize that life, even during my favourite season, is filled with the entire spectrum of colour, with a rainbow of ups and downs, and though it can feel disappointing when things aren’t as light as desired, I’m trying to teach myself to be present in each moment, whether it’s pink or yellow or dark, daunting indigo.

I’ve always believed in dressing for the way you want to feel, so I’ve been donning bright shades more than ever in the hopes of manifesting my washed-out Summer. This yellow lace dress is a bit out of my comfort zone, but a few weeks back when we passed the beautiful yellow inn I’d stopped at on my first trip to PEC in the Fall, it simply felt right. Though the day was cloudy and our crew a bit tired from the day of travel before, I decided to be the sun I wanted to see, paired with pretty blush accessories of course.

How do you dress to chase the blues away?

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I'll Follow You Anywhere

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I haven’t had as much of a chance to explore Ontario as I want to, so when Sophie offered to give me an adventure as my birthday gift, I suggested we get out of town. The KATB crew has totally fallen for Prince Edward County over the past few months (check out their guide here), so it was the obvious choice when deciding on a final destination. Sophie booked us a tiny cabin at Lake on the Mountain just steps from the water, and we roped in Jaymi from Good Day hair as well – mostly because she’s an awesome mutual friend, but also a tiny bit because of her cottage hair styling skills (love you Jaymi!)

Early Sunday morning we settled in for a long drive on the open road and after about three hours of horrible car sickness (thanks to those beautiful winding country roads) we had arrived in Ontario’s tiny island heaven. Separated into a handful of smaller towns and communities, like Bloomfield and Picton, PEC is full of amazing restaurants, wineries, and adorable shops, and we couldn’t have asked for a better tour guide than Sophie to show us the best of the best.

The possibilities for #RAOPplaces were seemingly endless, but I’ve rounded up some of my absolute must-see picks for you next time you visit!

Scroll down for my pastel PEC travel guide!

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Slickers //

The best homemade country-style ice cream in all the land. Try the chocolate orange and the campfire!

County Cider Company //

Serving up amazing pizza and just about every flavour of cider you can imagine, this is the perfect place to load up on local sips to take home to your friends (or hoard for yourself.)

Vicki’s Veggies //

You know those farm stands in the olden days where you write down what you take and leave cash in a jar? Well, this tiny family-run farm is just that!

Coriander Girl PEC //

A Toronto favourite, Allison now lives in PEC and has opened up the prettiest little county coriander girl florist you ever did see.

Miller House at Lake on the Mountain //

This restaurant was part of the complex we stayed in, and I’m surprised we ever left. It was essentially a cheese board-only eatery that overlooked the ferry crossing, and if the sun sets weren’t worth a visit, the food definitely was!

Norman Hardie Winery //

Open air dining, an adorable shop filled with local goods, amazing wine and an oyster shucking bar? What else could you ever want?!

The Courage //

The decor at this spot is a perfect mix of minty old and new, and the brunch is on point! Don’t forget to snap a photo of their perfect neon sign between bites.