Tag: Burlington

Aqua-Tots Swim Schools in Burlington Takes Swimming Lessons To The Next Level

The roads were covered with snow and the temperature was below freezing on a Sunday morning. A snowstorm had just hit our city and usually this would mean a day indoors in our PJs. However, this Sunday it was going to be different – very different. We were going to brave the wintery weather conditions and take Nikki swimming at Aqua-Tots Swim School in Burlington.

Nikki sprung out of bed excited as she has been waiting to check out the new location for months. But with battling colds and a very busy holiday schedule it was not possible until now. Therefore, we were not going to let some winter weather stop us from checking it out.

We bundled up in our winter gear and slowly made our way to Burlington. The drive was nice as we got to see a different part of Burlington that we haven’t seen before. When we arrived at the Activity Plex where Aqua-Tots Swim School is located, we did not know what to expect since we have been away from the swimming scene for months.

First Impressions

They say first impressions are everything and they truly are. As soon as we opened the doors to Aqua-Tots Swim School, we fell in love with it. It felt like home.

We walked in and were quickly greeted by the friendly staff who gave us our first tour of the new facility. Many of our favourites such as the play area, comfy seating, and dressing rooms have carried into the new location. We loved the open space and great design. Of course we couldn’t expect anything else from the Aqua-Tots Swim Schools brand.

We were amazed by how stunning everything was. From the design, layout, colours to the friendly staff – it was Aqua-Tastic!

Family Friendly Top Priority

Of course, there is no denying that Aqua-Tots Swim Schools is family-orientated, focused and friendly. Every detail in the swim school has family in mind and that is evident with the baby protection seats in their changing rooms (let the koala seat sticker on the doors in the family change area be your guide). There are also cubbies and lockers available to place your items in while your child swims.

The layout is family friendly too with the entrance to the pool on one side of the change room and the exit being right in the change room area – brilliant!

Did I mention that the facilities are very clean?! Being a family friendly environment, cleanliness is important and they deliver exceptionally.

Swimming Class

Once we absorbed the facility it was time for swimming! Nikki was anxious and couldn’t wait to try the new pool. Since the swim program is the same throughout all Aqua-Tots schools, we knew the drill. 😉

The swim instructor called out the children’s names and took them in. They took a quick shower before entering the pool and the class began. It was amazing to see that Nikki didn’t miss a beat and it appeared that no time went missing as she completed each lesson with ease.

At the end of the class a very excited Nikki greeted us at the exit and instructor informed us of how it went. Nikki did well with only a few areas that need to be worked on but above all it was a great class.

#MelAndNikkiReview

The time has come to evaluate our overall experience and it shouldn’t come to a surprise that Aqua-Tots Swim Schools in Burlington surpassed our expectation.

The facility in itself is stunning and you can tell that a lot of time, designing and love went into creating it for families to enjoy. We love how family friendly the facility is and they didn’t miss a beat to ensure that the swim lessons are top notch for children.

There are many swim schools available but none offer the feeling of family and belonging. Nikki was so excited that the staff cared to remember her name and she felt like it was home to her. She was a bit nervous at first that this was a new location but when she felt like she belonged as soon as she walked through the doors, she knew it would be great. That is something that is hard to duplicate as you can’t clone a feeling that an establishment can give you. Aqua-Tots Swim Schools recognizes that and have ensured that this feeling is given to everyone who comes through their door.

Therefore, for this #MelAndNikkiReview, we give them 6 fins out of 5! Our first rating that has surpassed our system and it is much deserved.

Enrolment is ongoing and you can register anytime. If you would like to enroll your child with Aqua-Tots Swim School in Burlington, make sure to give them a call at (905) 331-3393 or email them at burlingtoninfo@aqua-tots.com.

Make sure to follow them on Facebook and Instagram for the latest updates and great tips!

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

 

– Momma Braga

 


This article is a paid partnership with Aqua-Tots Swim Schools. Views and opinions expressed here belong to Momma Braga.

Aqua-Mazing Swimming Program Delivered By Aqua-Tots | Burlington Ontario

Aqua-Tots Swim Schools have been delivering crafted swimming programs for children in over 90 swim schools worldwide. The swimming lessons teach children of all ages and abilities how to be safe in and around the water to become water-smart from the start.

We have been with Aqua-Tots Swim School for a year now and it has been such an amazing experience for our family.

This is why we are excited to announce that a new Aqua-Tots location is opening up in Burlington, Ontario in late Fall!

The new location will be in the new Activity Plex facility which is a best in class center for children filled with activity studios for kids of all ages. This facility is located on 3410 Mainway, Unit #3 in Burlington. This location will be serving families in Burlington, Milton, Oakville, Hamilton and beyond.

You can expect the same amazing swimming lessons that are designed for babies, toddlers, and kids of all ages.

With a heated indoor swimming pool they are able to offer swimming lessons all year round and offer a variety of flexible swim schedules which is fantastic for families.

Services and Benefits

Some of the services and benefits you can expect when joining Aqua Tots Swim School are:

  1. Swim lessons will run both weekday morning, afternoons and evenings. There are classes also available on Saturdays and Sundays to give families flexibility with scheduling. They are open six days a week with the exception of Fridays.
  2. Membership at the Burlington location will include all the great perks that the Mississauga location has such as FREE Guardian Swim for caregivers with babies in Level 1 and Level 2; FREE bi-weekly Family Swim on Sundays; and a Swim Club for kids in Level 6 and up (this will be offered starting in November).
  3. The pool is heated to 90 degrees and the space will be a family-first environment with change tables, a play area, hair dryers and lots of change rooms. Also note that the facilities are always kept clean.
  4. They will be offering small group classes along with semi-private and private lessons.
  5. They will offer perpetual swim lessons; therefore, enrolment will be open year-round.
  6. In December they will be hosting a Swim with Santa for families with activities for all ages.
  7. Aqua Tots Swim School is just Aqua-Mazing so you don’t want to miss out!

Even though the Burlington location will open later on this Fall, you can pre-register for swim lessons now by emailing burlingtoninfo@aqua-tots.com to start an important life skill.

We are so grateful and thankful to Aqua Tots Swim School for helping our daughter learn this important life skill of swimming. This has been one of the best investments that we have done for our daughter and she enjoys it so much!

Aqua Tots Swim Schools has made a promise which is:

“We promise world class swim lessons to all students, regardless of age or ability. We promise to work with our community to help prevent childhood drowning and make Burlington children water-smart from start.”

It is a promise that they have been fulfilling throughout their over 90 swim schools worldwide and now they can fulfill it in the new community of Burlington and surrounding areas.

It’s a life changing experience and I can’t wait to see the new location in Burlington! Don’t forget to pre-register by email at burlingtoninfo@aqua-tots.com and if you want to get more information, click here.

The Aqua-Tots Team is also currently looking to hire Swim Instructors! If you or someone you know is interested in applying for this rewarding position, please send resumes to mississaugastom@aqua-tots.com.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga

 

 

 

 

 

 

*Please note that this article was not a paid or sponsored post. No compensation or commission will be given to Momma Braga in exchange for this post.

A Widow’s Perspective: Life without Your Life Partner

“My life is extremely full, I wouldn’t have it any other way!” – Kim

Kim Sutherland is a working mom with two grown boys, ages 22 and 17. Kim has enjoyed a full time career in the travel industry for 20+ years. About ten years ago she opened up her own décor business, as she always had a desire to be an entrepreneur and gain some additional income.

Kim has a busy schedule; however, she is careful to build in time for herself, her family, and volunteering. Kim fosters Labrador Retriever puppies for Dog Guides of Canada. She provides a loving home, follows specific training guidelines to prepare the dogs for their future “service” to a Canadian with a disability. All of the above keeps Kim very busy, and she says she wouldn’t have it any other way.

What many people may not know about Kim is that she is a widow and became one at a young age with two young children to care for. You can say that her world was rocked but how she coped is an inspiring story that I get to share with all of you as I interviewed Kim for this exclusive piece.

The timing of this article is extra special this week as September 10th is quickly approaching which is a memorable day for Kim. This date was when Kim and her husband, Randy were married and it is also Kim’s birthday. Therefore, this makes it a perfect time to share Kim’s story.

Tell me a little about what your husband was diagnosed with?

“My husband was diagnosed with a rare form of Acute Myelogenous Leukaemia, at the very young age of 39. It came out of nowhere, he did not feel well for three weeks prior to Christmas, needless to say it was shocking news, it rocked our world.”

Once you heard of your husband’s diagnosis and time to live. What did you do and how did you cope?

“My husband was given three months to live, at that time I was holding our six month old infant, Carter and  my other son Matthew (age five). We were living in Calgary at the time, both of our careers had taken us there. We loved being in nature, the mountains, all of the outdoor space and family friendly living. Our family members were all back in Ontario.

Once the doctor gave me the news, I immediately called my parents. My mom jumped on a flight to Calgary to come and help. Doctor’s told me to get help, get paperwork in order, he would die from this. What I struggled to understand, was how does this happen to a guy that was so fit, extremely fun and positive, always. We had everything going for us. I couldn’t believe it, but when the doctor sat me down and calmly explained to me how sick he was, and we were being moved to a terminal ward of the hospital within minutes of the diagnosis, I realized this is serious and happening fast.

“Your dad had amazing courage, so let that be a lesson, we need to be tough cookies from time to time…life is not easy.”

Each day was tough, watching someone who was incredibly vibrant maintain his positive attitude and courage (during chemo, brain radiation, hair loss and a bone marrow transplant). To this day, I tell the boys, “Your dad had amazing courage, so let that be a lesson, we need to be tough cookies from time to time…life is not easy.” Sadly all the drugs and great healthcare could not keep my husband alive, his body did shut down. We lost him on August 26, 2002. The boys were really young.”

After your husband’s passing, what did you do to help yourself and your children cope?

“I knew I had to continue to be strong, no matter what. I moved back (to Ontario) to be close to family and friends. I enrolled my boys in some activities and even when I had to do the 5 AM hockey practices, bundling an infant and my eldest into the car at that horrible hour on a Saturday or Sunday morning was not necessarily fun, but it was important. The social aspect was great for them and me! I also had the unwavering support of my mom and dad. Truly, my mom is my rock.

Moms are made of something we cannot describe. Somehow we pull energy and strength out when you really feel exhausted, but you get up and put on a smile for your child and that is what matters. You are their world. My mom did a ton to keep the house together, while I ran to/from the hospital. It was a very sad time, but I knew my boys needed me and I had to keep busy to cope. I also knew that my career and the people at work, were good for me. The boys and I did a lot of activities together such as reading, Lego, playing board games, crafting, setting up play dates with other moms and kids, making new traditions.”

What advice can you give a parent who has become a widow with small children?

“Keep positive! Keep their routine, be the parent you wanted to be with your partner/spouse. Don’t be afraid to seek out friends for a shoulder to cry on, or even get professional help to deal with the grief. Nobody knows what it is like until you are in it, so if anyone is not supportive, keep away from those people. Grieving is tough. I suggest you ask someone to take the kids one day a week so you can go do something for yourself. Go to the gym, or for a long walk (or run), meet a friend for a coffee, get a pedicure…you get the idea. It’s about your downtime to re-energize. Kids take a lot of your time and energy. Take a lot of pictures. I found when my husband was sick I didn’t take enough pictures. He didn’t want photos taken (of himself); however, my boys have learned a lot through the videos and pictures we do have.”

How did you do it all? How did you balance two young children, a career and a passion (staging)?

“I did it with the help of family and friends, which I am so grateful for. I love being busy, I don’t stand still often. I started Above & Beyond Décor, to have additional income but it also feeds my creativity. That is what fills me up. Staging is hard work, although it is fun too. You get to create, like a picture in a magazine. Meeting new people, building my business, planning for the future is important to me. I am an advocate for other women, letting them know you need a “plan” i.e. get your financials in order and be ready to take on anything. None of us really know what lies down the garden path, so best to have a plan and have passion.”


Tell me a little about your staging company.

“Above & Beyond Décor was founded as a result of my passion for home décor, floral design, networking and personal growth. I read about home staging and a course that was being offered by a North America staging professional. I decided that would be a great addition to my list of services. I enrolled in the course and became a Certified Staging Professional. Real estate staging is merchandising a property’s best features, understanding lifestyle selling techniques and targeting specific buyers. My friends and family kept telling me I had the “knack” a real talent, knowing how to style and decorate. In order to get that talent noticed, I offered to stage a couple of friend’s homes for free. Their homes sold in a matter of days (with multiple offers on the table), the realtors were very impressed. Soon, a number of realtors were calling me and my business flourished.

I work with a lot of local Mississauga, Oakville and Burlington real estate professionals, they call upon me to stage vacant properties as well as those lived in.

What makes a great stager? Testimonials and referrals. I am extremely pleased with my client testimonials. I often hear that they love my style, my approach (not intrusive), and I am very personable. Comments include: “Your work is amazing;” “Wow, I love how it looks now, I don’t want to move!” “We received multiple offers because of your staging!” or “I need to live like this in my new home.”

What made you decide to become a stager?

“I realized there was a huge opportunity in the market and this just seemed like a natural step forward for me. Realtors and homeowners appreciate when a home sells for top dollar, studies have shown that 65% of buyers prefer to pay more money for a “move in” ready home. Staging is huge now!”

If you could give a younger you some advice on parenting what would it be?

“Hmm, that is tough one. I do not have any regrets, very happy with the way things have worked out for me. I would say getting proper rest is key. Being a parent is fun, challenging, you will be juggling a lot of balls in the air, so when you don’t get enough rest or just need support – Ask for help! Most of us moms don’t ask – we try to be SuperMom and do it all.”

Anything else you would like to add for our readers?

“Melanie, thank you for allowing me to stage your home and for sharing my story on your blog. It was a pleasure meeting you, Mike and Nikki and seeing the smile on your face when you sold for top dollar! As for your readers, fellow mommy friends and family – I look forward to hearing from you. Someone you know might need a stager – that’s me.

Above & Beyond Décor for the ultimate first impression. Staging really sells! Please contact me at kesutherland@cogeco.ca.”

Special thank you to Kim for her time and inspiring us with her strength, courage and passion. I am truly grateful to have had the opportunity to work with Kim on the staging of my home and to get to know her as a business woman, mother and as a friend.

Kim is such an inspirational person in every way possible!

Losing her life partner was tragic and yet she found the courage and love to cope. I have to admit that this was a tough interview for me to do without shedding tears but it shows you how life has many unexpected turns and we have to embrace and love what we do have in the present. Kim has reminded me how precious life and my life partner are. Thank you Kim and please keep inspiring all with your positive love of life!

I am truly honored to have been given this opportunity to share Kim’s story with all of you and I hope you have been inspired as much as I have.

Until next time…Happy Parenting!

-Momma Braga