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Review +Wireless Headphones Giveaway: AfterShokz Trekz Air

Hellooooo! I’m excited to share this review with you and announce the giveaway I mentioned in previous posts. My favourite thing about AfterShokz Trekz Air is how you can hear the world around you while wearing them. This month in my final post, I got a second opinion from my tech-loving friend Dan Levy and have a great prize pack up for grabs.

Dan and I have known each other since the early years of Twitter 10 years ago. He’s written about heaps of tech gadgets in the time I’ve known him. Dan has a love for great music so I was keen to see what he thought of AfterShokz Trekz Air. Find his edited review below and make sure you enter the giveaway at the bottom of the post.


AfterShokz Review: A Second Opinion from Dan Levy

I’ve been using the AfterShokz Trekz Air headset for a couple of weeks after Casie asked me for a “guy’s perspective” on this new Bluetooth headset.

Out of the gate, the coolest thing about this headset is how it delivers sound to your brain without going into your actual ears. Instead, they use a technology called “bone conduction” where the headset’s audio is delivered to you via your jaw bone under your ears as opposed to going into or over your ears like other headsets you’ve used before. [Read more about this in a previous post by Casie]

I have really enjoyed using these headphones for walks and just day to day audio. Aftershokz greatest strength is also their greatest weakness – that they allow you to be aware of all that is going on around you because they don’t block your ears from hearing ambient noises. This is FANTASTIC for when you need to be present to the sounds around you but also want to be able to listen to your own personal soundtrack.

Aftershokz bone conduction technology is an absolute joy for getting out and exercising in your neighbourhood without risking lack of awareness of your surroundings. They helpfully include a pair of disposable ear plugs in the Aftershokz Trekz Air package so you can still listen in loud environments but where these headphones truly shine is for fitness users. They are IP55 rated which means that they are made to withstand dust particles and that they are “protected against powerful water jets and heavy seas”. You can sweat in them or get caught in the rain and not be concerned you kick up dust on the sidewalk/road while you’re running because these are built and certified to withstand such hazards.

I’ve been wondering if bone conduction audio delivery at full blast is better for your ears than putting a pair of earbuds to full volume (which is very much not advisable and can damage your hearing). I’m guessing it is!

If you’ve given these a try let us know what you thought of them. If you have any questions about them, be sure to reach out!

Find Dan on Twitter at @TheDanLevy.


AfterShokz Trekz Air Giveaway

OK, giveaway time. After spending the last couple of months with these headphones I have to stay I’ve really grown to like wearing them.

As someone who likes to always be aware of what’s going on around me, they’re awesome. In the last few weeks, I’ve been wearing them around the house to listen to books & podcasts and wearing them to do my BBG workouts.

AfterShokz Giveaway

The prize pack includes:

  1. Trekz Air Headphones
  2. A water bottle
  3. Black Sport Belt (I love this!)
  4. Portable Large Case
  5.  Sport Towel

If you have any questions, please let me know and GOOD LUCK.

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The giveaway is open to US and Canada residents and AfterShokz are giving away 3 units. This post is part of my 4-month partnership with PTPA and Aftershokz Canada. 

2 Month Review: AfterShokz Treks Air Wireless Headphones

Over the past two months, you’ve read my reviews of AfterShokz wireless headphones and how they’re great for walking, working out, and so lightweight you’ll forget you’re wearing them. This is part 3 of my 4-post series and today I’m going deeper into the tech specs and my thoughts after 2-months of use.

Headphones are a really personal thing. They’re part of your style but also serve a different purpose for each person wearing them. For example, Lauren O’Nizzle is one of my friends who’s almost always wearing headphones, whereas me, not nearly as often. However, this year I’m growing into new habits and working out more.

I mentioned earlier that one of the reasons I really like Trekz Air headphones is you can hear the world around you. I tried over the ear noise cancelling any they’re not for me. I need to be able to hear my environment to stay calm. I do a lot of walking outside and will soon (come on Spring!) be doing outdoor workouts so it’s important to hear what’s around me.

As for comfort, the Trekz Air headphones wrap around the back of your neck and hang over your ears. I can’t speak for long hair but they’re totally fine for my short hair. You forget they’re there and the fit is fine with a hat and/or glasses. They’re a really great workout fitness headphone if you want something that will stay put, not get in your way, but keep you aware of your environment.

The new AfterShokz Treks Air have improved bass from previous versions which improves dynamic sound range. When you turn up the volume you can feel a tiny vibration in your cheekbone. It’s pretty cool and not distracting, Ilike it.

As a tech lover, one of my favourite things to do is test out new gadgets. I am so impressed with how these deliver sound into your head without going through your ears. Think about that for a second! The doors are open for new developments like this and it makes me excited. I think one of the areas we’re really going to see a lot of new tech in the next year is audio devices and voice commands.

In my best effort to give you an honest review, here are my most favourite features and 2 things I think could be improved.

Most Favourite

  • Lightweight, hardly know you’re wearing them
  • Allow you to hear the world
  • Convenient for busy lifestyle, parents, fitness

Least Favourite

  • The volume isn’t super high as the headphones don’t cover the ears
  • Sound quality not as good as regular headphones

In my fourth and final post in this series, we have a giveaway and I’ve asked for a second opinion on these headphones from a tech aficionado. I gifted a pair of AfterShokz to my friend Dan Levy and I’ll be sharing some of his thoughts on them. Dan is really into music so I’m interested to see what he says!

If you’re looking to get a jump on your own pair, us this link for $50 off. Now that I’ve hit publish, I’m grabbing my headphones and heading outside.

LMK if you have any questions & have an amazing day!

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From January to April 2019, I'm reviewing AfterShokz headphones in a paid partnership with PTPA (Parent Tested Parent Approved). All opinions experiences are my own, obvsStay tuned for a contest in the next post where you can win a pair! 

Follow #ShokzSquadCAN to see what the rest of the review team is saying. 😊

A Morning Walk for Good Health

One of my fav things to do in the morning is get up and go for a walk. As part of my 4-month test of AfterShokz Trekz Air headphones, I’m sharing how I’ve grown to really love these headphones, especially for walking outside.

I love to get outside for fresh air when I get up in the morning. It’s a little harder during the cold months but if you dress for it, you’re fine. You’ll be glad you went and luckily, spring is almost here. More often than not, I find something along the way to inspire my thoughts, feelings, or at least a selfie. 😎✌🏼

I like to listen to music, books, and podcasts but don’t want to fully cancel out the noise around me. What if there’s a dog or a siren? Safety is really important. It sucks that we live like this but the thought of a stranger coming up behind me on the sidewalk, path, or just about anywhere freaks me out. I need to be able to hear what’s going on around me at all times. Especially since my fall in November, I’m hyper-aware to what’s going on around me and how safe, or icy the ground is. Side note, spring weather is apparently coming early!

The AfterShokz Trekz Air headphones send sound to your inner ear with little vibrations through your cheekbones. This leaves your ears free and open to hearing all the sounds around you. It’s kinda futuristic and makes me excited for the evolving world of wearable tech. I went into detail about how bone conduction works in my first of 4 posts right here.

Benefits of a Morning Walk

I know it’s hard in the winter but if you start now, come spring you’ll be happy with your new routine and likely see some health benefits. Here are a few ways a 15-30min morning walk will help you look and feel healthier:

  • Helps to improve blood sugar control, reduce diabetes risk
  • Heart health! Brisk walking can help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke.
  • Can alleviate symptoms of depression & anxiety
  • Enhance brain function
  • Weight loss – exercise helps to slim & tone your body
  • Helps with arthritis, bone health
  • Good for the immune system. Fresh air!
  • Helps with weight loss and reducing overall body fat
  • Boost of energy
  • Can relieve stress
  • Improve blood circulation – good for the glow up!

AfterShokz TrekzAir: Comfort & Fit

  • Sunnies? Yep! – You’ll be happy to know you can 100% wear AfterShokz Trekz Air with sunglasses. I never leave the house without mine!
  • Lightweight – They’re really quite comfortable to wear while running/walking and don’t slip or fall off. They’re so light, I’ve come home a couple times and forgot I was even wearing them.
  • Hat? No problem! – You can wear a beanie or baseball hat without interfering with the fit or audio.

Thank you for tuning in! Over the next month, I’m getting back into working out and yoga post-injury. I’ll be assessing AfterShokz for work workouts at home and the gym. If you’re looking to order a pair, get $50 off via this link from PTPA.

Finally, do you have any podcast recommendations? I like no bs, comedy, tech, or true crime.

Have a great day!

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Over 4 months, I'm reviewing AfterShokz headphones in a paid partnership with PTPA (Parent Tested Parent Approved). All opinions experiences are my own and I get to keep them!

Sharing the Love w/ Ford Canada – Weekend Getaway at JW Muskoka

I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again. it’s amazing what a weekend away can do for your happiness, health, relationship, and spirit. Over the winter we don’t get away too often so when Ford Canada offered up the new Ford Expedition and hotel stay, I was so down.

2019 Ford Expedition Platinum from Ford Canada

We stayed at the JW Marriott Muskoka, one of Canada’s top 10 luxury resorts as voted by Conde Nast. I’ve wanted to stay here for ages and tweeting back in forth about Muskoka and cottage life for years. The staff were nice, the food was good, it was quiet. We didn’t do much other than eat and sleep but it was just the relaxing 24 hours we needed.

The lobby is quite modern and the whole place has a country house vibe. There was warm apple cider in the lobby, complimentary snowshoeing, snow bikes, and valet.

We were upgraded from a standard room to an apartment style suite which was verrrrrry roomy. A family of 4 could have stayed here no problem. It had a full kitchen, fireplace, two tvs, a private bedroom, washroom with 2 sinks, and a separate toilet/bath/glass shower, so you could use each independently.

I could have honestly stayed there for a week working on the great Americancan novel, or my blog.

Inside the JW Mariott Muskoka

The hallways feel a bit like you’re in a movie. We’re definitely going back in the summer to take in the outdoor spaces and activities.

The weather wasn’t great and neither were the roads. I was happy we were in a vehicle with 4 wheel-drive. The 2019 Ford Expedition Platinum is huge, especially when you are only 5’2 driving an SUV that seats 8! It’s also rollin’ on 22’s so you’re seated above most cars on the road. Great for visibility! The amazing traction control was very useful on icy Muskoka back roads.

“This is a very smart vehicle.”

Sean on the way home through a blizzard

This car definitely got dirty driving through lots of huge of slushy puddles, snowy roads, and a slight blizzard on the way home.

Some of my favourite features of the 2019 Ford Expedition:

  • wireless charging
  • heated steering wheel
  • massage chairs
  • heated/cooling seats
  • Hands-free liftgate (open back door with foot movement!)
  • SYNC3 & Apple Car Play
  • 360 + Backup cameras
  • B&O Soundsystem

There’s also entertainment screens in the back of the front seats but we didn’t use them as it was only us this weekend. Although, earlier in the week Emily absolutely LOVED sitting in the front seats, the middle seats, sleeping in the back seats, and the varying technology in each passenger location.

Another cool feature of this SUV is the Ford Pass App + Wireless Hot Spot, we didn’t use these features but I would 100% if I owned the vehicle.

Thank you Ford Canada for creating this experience. It was so nice. We had so many laughs and came home feeling rested.

If you’re keen to stay at the JW Muskoka, use this link on booking.com to get $40 back on any hotel reservation.

I’m looking forward to being back up in Muskoka in a few weeks to start opening the cottage.

The countdown to spring IS ON!

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Ford Canada hooked us up with a car and hotel! Wooo hoo!

Review: AfterShokz – Trekz Air, Wireless Bone Conduction Headphones

A few weeks ago I was looking for wireless headphones, I wanted something to wear to the gym but I wasn’t sure if I wanted noise cancelling or something else. There was a whole debate about what’s better on my Facebook page and I ended up ordering a pair of noise cancelling but they made everything…too quiet! I’m rarely in a situation where I want to silence everything, I feel safer when I can hear. I like to know what’s going on around me when I’m walking around outside, working out, or in transit.

Then something great happened! I got asked to review AfterShokz headphones with bone conduction technology in a program with PTPA. Over the next 4 months, I’ll be testing out the headphones in my daily life and sharing my experience. I was really keen to try how bone-conducting headphones work and the technology behind them.


First Impression

I can tell you right now that my first day I was pretty blown away. The cool thing is, since AfterShokz headphones don’t go IN your ear, you can still hear your music, a podcast, an emergency siren, or someone calling your name in the office. I wasn’t sure what to expect but I’m really quite into them, plus you can hardly notice when they’re on. [Don’t mind my hair it’s so wild right now!]

Comfort

Comfort is a big factor for me and these are small and lightweight, you can hardly feel you’re wearing them. I’m not that into earbuds, I’ve found most of them uncomfortable in the past. I feel like a bit of a dork telling you this but there’s been a few times I’ve had them on, forgot I was wearing them, then wondered where the music was coming from. Ha! They come with a handy carrying case for easy transport when you’re not wearing them but to be honest, you can wear them all the time with ease.

I love being able to hear what’s going on around me but also have a soundtrack to my life. 

Me on Day 1 w/ AfterShokz

How Does Bone Conduction Work?

The sound is a little bit hard to explain but I like it, it feels futuristic. You can turn up the volume so you hardly hear anything around you, or keep it low and be fully tuned in to your surroundings. They also come with ear plugs if you want a noise cancelling effect but I don’t think I’ll be using those.

According to Aftershokz:

“Bone conduction is a natural part of the hearing process—sound travels through our eardrums and bones simultaneously. We’ve taken the concept to the next level through development of a suite of proprietary audio technologies and design patents. The result: headphones that deliver unrivaled situational awareness and comfort.

via aftershokz.ca


In my next post, I’ll be sharing how they are for working out now that my shoulder is better. They repel sweat and I’m gonna put that to the test. I love that you can wear them cycling or running and still feel safe and alert to sounds around you. I also have a giveaway with a pair for a lucky reader so stay tuned for that! Any questions about the sound or bone conduction technology, leave a comment or Tweet me!

Follow #ShokzSquadCAN to see what the rest of the review team is saying. 😊

casiestewart, blog, blogger, toronto, canada, travel, tech
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Over the next 4 months, I'm reviewing AfterShokz headphones in a paid partnership with PTPA (Parent Tested Parent Approved). All opinions experiences are my own and I get to keep them!


 

Review: Roomba i7+ Robot Vacuum

Over the past 45 days, I’ve been testing the Roomba i7+ from iRobot. Overall, awesome vacuum, especially great for bungalows, love the self-cleaning feature. ?

casie stewart, roomba, toronto, review, tech, blogger

I’ve wanted a Roomba or years and talked about it on Twitter back in 2012. Hello, who wouldn’t’ want a little cleaning robot?!

We have quite a few stairs at home, so I decided Roomba would live at the 1188 office. Honestly, it’s been such a hit with everyone, they were all so excited when the big box arrived, it would be interesting to find out what is best robot vacuums to try out. It feels like we have an office pet again!

casie stewart, pridyct review, roomba, roomba i7, tech, toronto, blogger
Welcome to our lives little guy!

I would say the only downfall about the Roomba Robot Vacuum is that it can’t do stairs, yet! It does have Cliff Detect so it won’t fall down or take a tumble should you have some stairs around.

Once I got everything set up, it was really quick to download the app and connect the device. The Roomba i7+ is the smartest robot vacuum yet. It has a cleaning dock to empty itself plus an app that lets you control it and see where it’s cleaned.

You can see it was super quick to set up. I snapped these screenshots all in the same minute! My favourite part aside from clean office floors is the app (by the way, this is the perfect vacuum for wooden floors). I’m able to see if there’s an issue, what’s been cleaned, or set it to clean at any specific time.

Cleaning

Two features that make this an amazing machine are 1) Dirt Detect™ Technology and 2) The Edge-Sweeping Brush. Dirt Detect gets to know areas that need more cleaning like high traffic spots and prompts the robot to be more thorough when cleaning there. The magical Edge Sweeping brush gets into the edges and corners. I found this quite useful in the kitchen and around office chairs.

Self Cleaning

This is a handy feature. The robot cleaned 4h 57minutes before needing to be emptied. This feature means you don’t have to worry about emptying the little robot once it’s full saving you time and energy. It’s really easy and not messy to take out the full bag, toss, and put a new one in. The vacuum set comes with 2 bags and it was about a month before I needed to empty the bin. You can order new bags from the iRobot shop.


Smart Mapping

I love this feature. Some people mentioned it’s ‘kinda creepy‘ that it makes a map of your space but honestly, that doesn’t really concern me when I arrive at the office and the floor is tidy.

The Roomba i7+ robot uses Imprint™ Smart Mapping technology to learn the floor plan and it gets better over time. You can set it to just clean certain areas, pick specific times, or set to a schedule. Watch the video below to see how it works.

Another really cool thing is that the Roomba connects to Alexa enabled devices or Google Assistant. The joy of saying “Alexa, run the vacuum” makes me so excited for the robot future.

Great vacuum. Highly recommend.

casie stewart, roomba, toronto, review, tech, blogger

Also, this is my favourite comment from Sean about the new Roomba, haha.

“I dropped some chips so I woke up the Roomba”

casie stewart
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Disclaimer: iRobot sent this for me to review in exchange for my honest opinion and that's exactly what you've got here! 

Unpopular Opinion: I Like The New WordPress 5.0

Unpopular Opinion: I Like The New WordPress 5.0

I installed the new WP 5.0 that came out last week right away. I like to be the first to try things out. I’ve always been an early adopter. There are a few glitches but I believe this is the start of a new, modern, flexible WordPress. It gives you so much more customization in the way your work is displayed, photos, galleries, quotes.


I ran into an issue when I first installed WP 5.0 where it reverted me back to the Classic Editor. I lost Gutenberg when I installed 5.0 then I installed the Classic Editor and couldn’t get Gutenberg back. I searched a whole bunch of WP developer forums and it was VERY CLEAR, people HATE Gutenberg and they HATE Blocks. To fix it I disabled the Classic Editor plugin, and deleted, reinstalled the Gutenberg editor. I also disabled Page Builder (Site Origin) and a couple other plugins that I wasn’t using and probably weren’t updated for WP 5.0.

I blogged about my fav parts of the new Gutenberg Editor back in August when it was released here.


One of my favourite things in the new editor is how you can display images wide across the page. I love the way galleries look stretched out instead of just within the pixel width of your blog text. So pretty. These photos are from Ashley Longshore gallery in New Orleans, LA.

What are your thoughts on the new WordPress, do you love it or do you hate it?

Comments open!

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TELUS Friendly Future Foundation: Helping Youth & Communities Across Canada

TELUS Friendly Future Foundation: Helping Youth & Communities Across Canada

Across Canada, 1.5 million children go hungry without access to nutritious food every single day, 30K Canadians are homeless (mostly young people), and 40% of low-income families don’t have internet access putting kids at risk for falling behind in school. We can all do something to help and this year Telus launched the Friendly Future Foundation putting $120 million into addressing the social and economic challenges facing Canadian youth.  I am proud to work with Telus and have been a #TeamTelus partner for the last 8 years.  


The Foundation will give grants to grassroots charities in communities across Canada who really know their community and how to help. By partnering with smaller charities, they’re able to help out groups that might be missed by huge corporate donors and make a big impact in small communities. I think this is an amazing approach. I work with Brands For Canada, an organization that provides new clothing & basic needs supplies to people across Canada and this method of working with local charities has worked great for them. 

The Friendly Future Foundation funding will help kids build up digital literacy skills, get basic healthcare and mental health support to the homeless, and open up other educational opportunities. Here’s an example of doing good in a community not too far from us, Telus donated $20K to the Women’s Shelter in Barrie.


casie stewart, telus, give where we live, toronto, charity, donations

The $120 million TELUS has provided for the Friendly Future Foundation is the largest donation made by a publicly traded Canadian company in history and one of the largest ever in North America. Way to go team!

Over the past two decades, TELUS, team members and retirees have contributed more than $1 billion of value to Canadians, through $530 million in financial support and 1.21 million days of volunteerism. Last year alone they (we!) volunteered 1 million hours. 

I’m continuously impressed by how Telus gives in communities where they live. I’ve had the opportunity to do some giving back of my own through volunteer programs and they have made over $21,000 in charity donations on my behalf. This year my donation went to Cambridge Montessori (where I went!) and last year my donation went to SKETCH, an art based program for kids in the GTA.  I’m hoping to do more with Telus and local programs for 2019.


Have a project that could use some help? You can APPLY for funding here. The deadline for Toronto applications is January with different deadlines across Canada. So, if you want to make a difference, learn more about community grants here and get on it.

casie stewart, telus, give where we live, toronto, charity, donations

For more information about the TELUS Friendly Future Foundation visit friendlyfuture.com/en/foundation. And for some inspirational stories about people Telus has already helped, check these out.


This post is part of my long-term partnership with Telus sharing great stuff the brand is doing, my favourite things about being a customer, and tech gadgets I love (or want!).

Instant camera photos of children faces in heart-shaped pile
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Review: Dyson Cyclone V10 Cordless Vacuum

The vacuum is incredible. Best I’ve ever had. I love it. The end. 

casiestewart, dyson, airblade, V10, blogger, influencer, toronto, sponsored
VROOOOOOM, this baby has some POWER.

Ok jk jk.  I received an email about a month to review the new Dyson Cyclone V10 and was 100% down. In exchange for my review, I get to keep the unit and my house had never been cleaner! This thing has some SERIOUS power. It’s also easy to use right out the box (once charged!) and if you have kids around, a great motivator to clean.

I love that it’s cord-free. You can just grab it and go for quick clean ups around the house, the couch, kitchen, stairs, baseboards. I’ve been using it almost daily as a small dust buster style like the photo above. This weekend we had my sister and her step-daughter over for movie night and DIY pizzas complete with chips and popcorn. I usually can be kinda crazy about not making a mess but I didn’t freak out, Dyson to the rescue!  The V10 is a godsend for the area around the couch and kitchen. How do they always get so messy?! We have dark hardwood floors in the living room and I find the area around the kitchen stools needs to be cleaned daily, the V10 is especially great for this.

The dusting wand is amazing for corners by baseboards and other hard to reach areas like the ceiling vents. In other news, Emily has cleaned her room every weekend since we got it.

Image result for dyson v10
All the parts that come with the Dyson V10 

Size wise, is a bit bigger and heavier than the V6 which is likely due to the larger bin and additional battery power. Also, I kind of wish it had an on-off switch, you currently have to hold your finger on the trigger to use it but I do like that  I’m always in control. The battery lasts up to an hour which is really handy. You can vacuum up almost anything other than dirt like, cereal, sugar, popcorn, paper scraps from crafting (as long as it’s dry). 🙂 The V10 can hold more dust and debris with it’s 40% larger bin and has hygienic bin emptying making it super easy to empty without making a mess. I love this feature because that last thing you want is get stuff all over the floor AFTER after you just vacuumed. 

Dyson V10, review, influencer, blogger, toronto

Learn more about this great little machine at dysoncanada.ca or order your very own on Amazon.


I previously had the Dyson V6 which was an incredible vacuum and after getting the V10 I gave it to a friend. I am a huge fan of Dyson products and also have the Dyson Pure Link Fan and use it daily (read that review here). 


Dyson gave me the V10 vacuum but all the cleaning was done by me and this is my honest review! 

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Smart Tech to Help You Through The Winter

We all know it’s coming, the dark and cold months of winter where all hibernate a little more and give thanks to the Netflix gods. I’ve been trying to stay on track with working out and am determined this winter to exercise just as much time as I spend binge-watching. Scroll down for tech accessories I find help me through colder days.

I love my FitBit.

Finess Tracker: FitBit

I have been using a Fitbit on and off for the past 5 years. I love the reminders to move every hour and getting those steps in each day. It’s a small thing that keeps me accountable to move. I also love seeing my heart rate, the interval tracking, and getting text messages on my wrist. The weekly reporting is a great way to motivate yourself to be more active. I’m currently using the FitBit Versa and Sean has the FitBit Iconic. I still use my FitBit Alta HR sometimes because it’s slimmer and looks more like a bracelet. Telus also has Apple Watch if that’s more your speed. 

M fav picks for a FitBit from Telus

FitBit VersaFitBit IconicFitBit Alta HR

A Home Assistant: Alexa

I love her, I ask her things every day. Mostly ‘what’s the weather’ so I know how many layers to put on and what type of jacket to wear. I love the weekly email from Amazon telling me with ‘What’s  New with Alexa?” and all the skills you can add to help her help you. I am particularly fond of CBC News and Entertainment Tonight. Check out her top & trending skill here and pick up an Amazon Eco that suits your needs and budget. The Echo Dot is a great entry level device at $54.99.  I don’t have a Google Home but same kind of thing! 

Amazon Echo Dot near laptop on stand

Smart Lights: Phillips Hue 

Last winter I added Phillips Hue Smart Home Lights and I love them so much. Almost every night I set them to a certain mood before bed, they’re also timed for sleep and wakeup. I spend a lot of time working from home and during the day I can set the white to a bright daylight that makes me forget it might be gloomy outside. This may seem like a small thing but it really helps my mood when I’m feeling down. My favs are the Phillips Hue starter pack of 4 lights and the Hue Go portable LED. Sometimes I want to concentrate or be in a tropical paradise, a millennial pink world, or be reminded of a cottage sunset on the lake.

Wireless Speaker: UE Wonderboom

Get a good speaker so you can have dance parties, listen to your fav podcast or escape in an audiobook with great sound. These are lots of different available depending on your budget, see here.  

I’ve been using the UE Wonderboom for the last couple months and it’s got great sound and is surprisingly loud for a little guy. It’s small enough to pack in your purse for outdoor hangs or in your suitcase for a getaway.  It also has a 10hr battery, is waterproof, and you can pair more than one for surround sound. So, go ahead, play your fav music in a relaxing bath and pretend you’re on vacation at a sunny resort.


All my recos can be found online at telus.com or your local Telus store. They have heaps of other cool tech things for holiday and gifting your loved ones, or yourself ha! I’ll be sharing my holiday favs soon, how is it almost NOVEMBER!

The other non-tech thing I recommend for winter is to get outside. Even if it’s cold, bundle up and get some fresh air. A 15-minute walk is great to start your day or clear your head at any other time. I try to get out for a few minutes in the morning so I don’t fall into a work-from-home hibernation slump. It’s the little things that make all the difference! 

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I am a #TeamTelus partner and this post was all my idea and these are my fav things. Stay warm out there. Love you. 

 

 

Why Don’t You Have a Will Yet? Get One Today, Meet Willful.

willful, will, legal, casie stewart, toronto, blogger, influencer

Do you have a will? No, of course, you don’t!  Who thinks about that while you’re out living your best life?  Hate to remind you but along with taxes, we can’t avoid death. You should have a will and you can get one with Willful in 20 min for less than $100  today.  


This weekend my friends got hitched, Erin Bury married Kevin Oulds, the creator of Willful. I’ve knows this duo for 10 years and am not surprised that they had the most unique wedding guest gifts I’ve ever seen, they gave every one of their guest a will. Till Death Do Us Part, right? 

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The happy pizza loving couple, congrats Erin & Kevin! 

Kevin created Willful after dealing with a difficult family situation, something none of us wants to deal with. To be honest, I’ve learned anything from TV or The Young & The Restless, it’s really important to have a will. Do you have any idea what will happen if you don’t? Read this.  If you’re common law, your partner gets nothing, the government will get involved in your finances, your family could have to vacate your family home, it’s not pretty. 

I saw first hand what can happen to families when certain aspects are unknown and what happens when there’s not a proper plan in place. I set out to make that experience easier to navigate and make it more affordable and accessible for people.

Kevin Oulds, Willful Founder & CEO

Their mission is to move estate planning from the back of your mind to the same spot as insurance, retirement, or financial planning. Stuff we might not want to think about and but get more intense the less attention you pay to them.  Even if you don’t have a lot of stuff, you still have something, protect your future and the ones you love. I made special notes for who gets my notebooks, tech, sunglasses, vintage clothes, and shoes. That stuff is important to me! 

Over 56% of Canadian adults don’t have a will. 

If you don’t have a will, don’t worry, you aren’t alone, 56% of Canadian adults don’t have them. Mum had me make one when I was 21 before moving to Australia, it was with a lawyer and I don’t have any idea what it says or how to access it. This year Kevin gave me a code to set up my own will on Willful and it was so easy. I was done in 20min and can access or change it anytime. Willful helps you create a fully legal will and gives you the ability to add anything you own that’s important including house/car, electronics, clothes, and pets.

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What if something happened to you, what would happen to your stuff?

Today is Willful’s 1 year anniversary and they are offering 25% off all plans. Their Essential plan is $99 at full price and gets you Last Will and Testament so you can take care of your estate, children, and final wishes with unlimited changes.

USE THIS CODE TO SAVE AN 25% OFF ANY PLAN: ANNIVERSARY25

Code will expire on October 25th, 2018
11:59 PM Eastern Time


Congrats Kevin on your success with Willful and marrying Erin! Learn more about willful here or ask me about mine anytime. 

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Vancouver: The Telus Innovation Centre

Vancouver: The Telus Innovation Centre

Earlier this year I was in Vancouver for a city planning conference and stayed an extra day to pop by the Telus office and have lunch with a friend. I’ve been working with Telus since my days at Much/MTV Canada, about 8 years ago.  I’ve had the opportunity to do some really neat stuff like volunteering, videos, city adventures, and making friends.

A couple years ago I helped them with some ideas to create their influencer program and it’s really grown into something awesome. Next month, they’re taking the ENTIRE GROUP of Canadian influencers (including me!) to their HQ in Vancouver.


Telus Garden

I was really stoked to visit this building. I remember when it started in 2012 and was opened in 2016. The Telus Garden building takes up an entire city block downtown Vancouver, totalling 1M sq ft. It has amazing energy saving features, a fantastic garden, and has won a bunch of awards for the design and sustainability. Unfortunately, I was there in winter so I didn’t get to see the outside areas, it snowed!  

“TELUS Garden is Canada’s most beautiful and ambitious LEED Platinum building, and one of the most environmentally-friendly developments in North America,” Darren Entwistle, TELUS President and CEO


Telus Innovation Centre

I met up with Ana from Telus (check out her IG @msanadouglas) and she took us up to the Innovation Centre where. I was amazed to see a beautiful bright space filled with technology.


One of the coolest features were the doors. Telus has created a set of doors that have screens instead of windows. Hello, why didn’t I think of that!? They’re the only 4 doors like this IN THE WORLD and they’re right here at Telus in Vancouver. A couple of them have cameras where you can host meetings and have the person you are talking with will show up on the screen. Other ones have touchscreen and heat sensors, so they can tell when there’s a person standing in front of them. This blew my mind. Imagine the possibilities? Our guide said they were originally developed for hospitals (Telus Health does heaps in healthcare, telushealth.co).


The space has a number of workstations, fully equipped with pop-up monitors for video conferencing. They pop up OUT of the tables! The card with wifi details doubles as seeds you can plant later at home. As a lifelong lover of tech, this was like being a kid in a candy store! 

They also have a 3D printer where they create and test out innovative ways to make our lives easier. For example, this small purple object made with PLA plastic could never be made by hand but it is 3D printed in a way that makes it unique and super strong, you can stand on it without it breaking. It can hold up to 300lbs!

I was really impressed to check out the mock apartment they have to test smart home technology. I’m not just talking a couple smart lights, they’ve got smart home everything. It’s not just the appliances and light bulbs, there’s a laser that reads prescriptions in your cupboard, smart pillows, smart bed. It was like living in the future and tbh, I’m totally into it. 


I can’t wait to be back on the West Coast with the #TeamTelus crew. There’s some really rad people on the team, a few I’ve known for years and some I’ve never met. I’ll be documenting as I go next week and fill you in on the details.

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