Life as it was - February

Well Happy Leap Day to you. Keeping with the theme for the year, here are the highlights of our 29 day February.

  • House: Decluttered the one small but very messy corner of the garage. More baby steps! Bought a dining table from Pier 1's closing down sale. The dining table we had at home was actually inherited from the previous owners of our home. I never liked it but it was useful enough that I always procrastinated about replacing it. My ideal dining table was one I had found on the Pier 1 website. Once I heard that Pier 1 was going out of business, I dashed to the store and was able to snag the dining table with matching bench (at a good discount) from the second store I visited. Finally adulting in the home decor department of life. 
  • Staycations: On valentines' day, we headed downtown for the Calgary Winter Glow Festival. This was the inaugural session of the festival and it was so perfect for a mid-winter break. It makes me feel so proud of my city that little initiatives like this are still coming out in spite of our economic woes. 

  • Family Time: I've finally succeeded in one aspect of sleep training BabyBoy. It's the part where I put him in bed and walk out of the room without him crying for me to come back and watch him sleep. Now I have a critical hour of my evenings back and can revive my bedtime routine with my girls. With that being said, we're now reading through the story of Moses in Exodus and the girls are finding it so engaging. My premise for choosing that was we have a DVD copy of The Prince of Egypt movie in the car which the girls love. It's easy to start discussions around what happened in the Bible version versus the movie adaptation. I wasn't sure if the girls were mature enough for us to read an actual bible instead of a book that was a collection of bible stories but so far so good.  
TIP: If you want to get your kids reading the bible, choose a version that's written in contemporary language. I am currently a fan of the New Living Translation version of the bible

  • Body: I don't know if "I learnt how to make authentic  magaritas" counts as a success story for my body, but that's my personal February food achievement. 
On the family side, I bought lentils pasta for the first time. I was really nervous about how the kids would receive it but.... they loved it! Not only did they come back for seconds, they asked me to pack the leftovers in their school lunch. I'm excited to add this to my regular shopping list. Only sour spot is the natural food store I got it from is closed so my next purchase may have to be online from the ole reliable big A. Note: What I like most about this pasta is that it contains only 2 ingredients: red lentils and chickpeas. Nothing else. Other lentil pastas I've come across usually contain some sort of carbohydrate flour. This one is a whole lot of plant proteins. 

I bought: 
A mattress. In a Box. From Casper. It's a long story but since you're still here, I'll share.

I went to Houston for work and my first night in the hotel, I woke up feeling sooooo good. I realized it was my first really nice sleep in a long time and I wondered why? The only thing I could zero in on was the mattress. Golly, do I need to order a mattress from the Marriott? The answer was a quick No. But I definitely needed a new mattress. My current mattress was a 10 year old Sleep Number bed that no longer held it's firmness. Maybe the root of my back pains and insomnia was in my crappy mattress. (Note: The Sleep Number Mattress was great when we first got it but over time, it's performance got worse. I have nothing against the brand)

Without getting out of bed, I logged into the Consumer Reports website and looked for their highest rated hybrid mattress-in-a-box. The Casper topped that list and I ordered one straight up. It was delivered and waiting for me when I got home from Houston. I initially balked at the price but then I reasoned, if it lasts 10 years that's equivalent of spending $15 a month for better sleep. Worth it? Absolutely.

Verdict? I love it. I didn't know how much harm I was doing to myself with my old mattress till I got this new one. The difference is night and day. I'm sleeping so much better - still not 100% insomnia free but every little change I make is bringing me closer to the goal of 7 hours of deep sleep. 

Would I recommend this mattress? Absolutely. I love the business model of not having to go to a store and deal with mattress salesmen and then pay extra for shipping AND take time off work to take delivery of a mattress. Phew! I ordered on Monday and mattress was delivered by Thursday with no drama. Works for me and yes I recommend this mattress

Caveats: Of course it can't all be perfect. 2 caveats apply. 
One: This mattress is HEAVY! The first time I ordered a mattress in a box, it was this replacement crib mattress for BabyBoy and I could carry it all by myself. The same does not apply for a king-sized hybrid mattress in a box. That puppy weighed over 60kg and took a lot of exertion to get to our third floor bedroom.
Two: Off-gassing. This is where a mattress gives off this awful smell once it's unwrapped. This Casper mattress off-gassed for up to 7 days. In a perfect world, I would have unwrapped it and kept it in a separate room for a week before using it. My world is not perfect. I had to leave the fans on and windows open everyday to speed up the removal of the smell.  It was a pain in the diaper area but that's done now and I'm enjoying my new mattress. 

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