have i mentioned all of my friends are pregnant? i’d say a good 80% are pregnant, or just had a kid…or the second kid.

it’s a weird space to navigate as a single woman with an empty womb and angry ovaries. i’ve lost the urge i had at 22 to procreate and am quite unsure i will ever get it back.

this also means i’m completely out of the loop when it comes to baby things. have you heard of a sprinkle before? i hadn’t. lighter than a shower, it’s a gathering to celebrate the second babe.

Mary was the first of my girlfriends to reach second-baby status and fellow-mom Alyson was in the know and gracious enough to throw a sprinkle.

a cozy tea with just a few ladies, we all contributed something to the goodie table and to Mary’s freezer for easy meals once the baby arrived.

one of my favourite foods during a high tea service are the scones. always light, fluffy and delicious, i tend to smother mine in devonshire cream and sweet jams.

i had never made scones, and i’m not smart enough to realize a party is the worst time to try something new – i made pavlova for the first time for a dinner party where one of the guests lived in Australia for years – so scones it was! the grocery store always has some if i messed up really badly, right?

i used this recipe from the kitchen magpie for her ‘the best scones ever’ and added raspberries. Karlynn’s not lying, they are better than the majority that i’ve eaten.

best scones ever

  • 1 cup of sour cream
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 4 cups of flour
  • 1 cup of white sugar
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup of butter
  • 1 egg
  • 1 cup of raspberries (or blueberries or raisins or whatever fruit you want)
  1. preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. in a bowl, mix the sour cream and baking soda.
  3. in a separate large mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, baking powder and salt.
  4. cut in the butter using a pastry blender (the best kitchen investment i’ve made) until the butter is broken into pea-sized morsels in the flour.
  5. beat the egg and mix in into the sour cream.
  6. add the sour cream mixture to the dry mixture, working it in.
  7. the dough can be a bit dry, but if you use your hands to combine it, it will be perfect. if needed, add milk until it’s combined. the secret to a good scone is a drier dough, not gluey.
  8. when the dough is combined, mix in the fruit by hand.
  9. divide dough into three equal circles, patting each to one inch thick (width ranges from 6-7 inches). cut each circle into six equal triangles.
  10. bake on a parchment lined baking sheet for 15-20 minutes until the scones are browned nicely on the bottom and slightly on the top. watch them carefully so they do not overcook.
  11. enjoy!

and enjoy they did! i have never received more compliments on a dessert i’ve baked before.

side note: how sweet is that photo of Evelyn (and Brent and Mary’s legs)? since Evelyn’s first birthday, i have been lucky enough to be trusted to photograph the VH family and some of their intimate family moments. i feel like it’s the best gift i can give, and it has inspired me to get much better at using my camera.

to add to my “best fake auntie” points ranking, i brought my camera over on easter to finally take some photos of baby number two, Theodore.

though he may be a ginger like his sister, he already had a much calmer demeanour than his firecracker older sis. all smiles and giggles from the teeny little boy.

these little loves are really melting my heart.

while being up all night with kiddos of my own seems less than tempting, i’m really digging this aunt business. i get to throw the parties, buy cute things, read the books, and dance around until we’re all exhausted.

and now i know about sprinkles!

did you know what a sprinkle was? have you ever made scones?

this post is sponsored by Bayer. to make sure these products are right for you, always read and follow the label.

women’s health needs to be a topic more widely discussed – we’re at a high risk for specific disease, but may not know it.

living a healthy and active lifestyle is a common – and smart – underlying treatment for the majority of disease. a pill i’m still learning to swallow.

but some things cannot be cures by kale and biceps curls, that’s when it’s time to seek support from medical professionals and/or over the counter products.

from boobs to bones, here are four things that affect women’s health:

total eclipse of the heart

while more men die from heart disease than women, females often go undiagnosed. the warning signs of a heart attack in women aren’t what you may think. while tv tells us to look for a numb left arm, chest pain and cold sweat, the “Hollywood heart attack” is the common symptoms for men.

according to heart and stroke foundation, women’s pain is often less severe, or they have non-pain signs such as nausea, sudden fatigue or shortness of breath. since these can seem like everyday symptoms, women are more likely to delay getting to emergency care, and once there, they are less likely to get fast, aggressive treatment.

what’s that smell?

bacterial vaginosis is a common vaginal infection that comes with some unpleasant side effects,
including a fishy smell and white-grey discharge. BV can cause complications during pregnancy, and approximately doubles the risk of infection by a number of other STIs, so make an appointment with your doctor if you think you might have it.

if you do have it – don’t panic! you can ask your doctor about treating BV symptoms with over the counter products like CanesBalance, which work to regulate your pH. treatment is no sweat – CanesBalance is a vaginal gel that is easy to use and is clinically shown to help effectively relieve and prevent the symptoms of BV by restoring vaginal pH. to make sure these products are right for you, always read and follow the label.

sticks and stone may break my bones

back pain and a curved upper spine are often synonymous with growing older, but they are also signs of osteoporosis – a predominantly female disease. the good news is, it is highly preventable. the behaviours learned in young adulthood can help women avoid such problems. you can build strong bones by consuming a diet high in calcium and vitamin D, and performing weight-bearing exercises such as strength training, hiking, climbing stairs, tennis, and dancing. you’ll also want to avoid smoking and limit your alcohol use.

do your boobs hang low?

breast cancer is the most common cancer in women. some risk factors are family history, being a Caucasian woman, and not having children. (check, check, check – add in my naturally fibrous tissue, and my boobs are something i pay particular attention to).

like most things, controlling your weight, regular exercise, and avoiding smoking will help you here, too. it is also important to speak with your doctor about appropriate screening and be aware of changes in your breasts.

how are you taking care of your body?

this post is sponsored by Bayer. to make sure these products are right for you, always read and follow the label.

i started this year with only one vacation in mind, then i remembered at some point i’ll have to fly home to see my parents once they are back from their respective snowbird adventures. other than that i’m going to hang out around the rockies, spending my time scaling mountains.

this is a cutback from last year when i seemed to be shouting “au revoir” every six weeks with three trips to Toronto, San Francisco, Boston, and Vegas. i basically just kept my suitcase packed with the essentials and overwatered my favourite plant so she wouldn’t die on me while i was away.

i’d much rather live with my passport close by, knowing i’m always ready to jet set at the drop of a (very fashionable) hat. the majority of the time you’ll find me daydreaming of travel. as the cute saying goes, i haven’t been everywhere, but it’s on my list.

i have a very bad habit of booking return flights to land at 8 a.m. so i can go straight from the airport to the office. it’s all about maximizing my time away.

saying this, it has also instilled in me the importance of a good sleep. i learned this the hard way when leaving San Fransisco. i accompanied Jenn to the airport for her redeye, but i wasn’t flying out until 6 the next morning. instead of wanting to pay for a hotel room i’d have to check out of at 4 a.m., i decided just to sleep at the airport. San Fran is known for this, there is even a website dedicated to helping you find the most ideal places to get some shuteye.

this was probably one of the worst decisions i’ve made. especially now that you can book a hotel from your phone at great day-of rates from apps like Hotel Tonight (get $25 off with my code: lbridgman1), or get money back when you book through Ebates.

i slept for maybe two 20-minute periods and spent the rest of the time wandering around the terminals, charging my phone, and playing candy crush. i arrived back in calgary exhausted and not ready for my nine-hour workday.

if i’m not staying with family or friends, you’ll now find me in a hotel the night before i fly home.

if you’re flying out of calgary, i’d suggest the Calgary Airport Marriott In-Terminal Hotel. located between the new international terminal, and domestic departures, you won’t have to worry about commuting from your hotel to the airport. as soon as you check out, you’re mere minutes from your gate.

Marriott Hotels also have some of the most comfortable beds amongst hotel chains, and if you like a good shower, you’re in the right place.

floor-to-ceiling windows feature views of the cityscape, the prairies and the rocky mountains; some also offer views of the airport runway. a runway doesn’t always sound the most alluring, but when you’re cozied up in a large armchair, watching planes take off with the rockies as their backdrop, coffee in hand, it’s kinda magical.

plus, the hotel is dog-friendly, so you’ll never know which new friends you may meet.

on my last visit there, i sadly did not have to rush off to catch a flight, but i could read the paper and drink coffee in bed.

side note: being a renter with a tight budget, i often feel like i won’t truly become an adult until i buy a new bed – that’s actually comfortable to sleep on – and have the ability to allow natural sunlight to stream in from big windows. when this happens, you’ll find me drinking coffee and reading in bed every sunday morning. i’ll probably be 94, and you’ll probably be dead. 

it also gave me time to enjoy the freshly baked pastries from in-house restaurant Yakima Social Kitchen + Bar, and go for a swim in the indoor pool.

if you’re on your way to an exciting exotic destination or taking a mini staycation, enjoy some r&r with an overnight stay and a good night’s sleep.

thank you, Calgary Airport Marriott In-Terminal Hotel for inviting me to stay for the weekend.