Friday, November 28, 2014

A Guide to Winter Camping With Kids (in 10 easy steps!)

In keeping with my November writing theme of learning to love winter and embrace the cold, I wanted to do a story on family winter camping.  I love getting into the wilderness and backcountry all year long and I can't sit inside for 6 months waiting for the snow to melt.  As you've figured out by now, we kind of like the white fluffy stuff too!  Snow means skiing and snowshoeing, sledding, snow angels, snow ball fights, skating,...AND winter camping.

Winter Camping at Elbow Lake (photo:  M. Schulze)

My definition of winter camping however, is perhaps not what one would typically refer to as "camping."  When I go into the backcountry or wilderness in the cold months from October through April, I stay in a hut, cabin, or hostel.  I'm a bit of a princess when it comes to tenting in the snow and I like to have four walls around me, a bed, and an indoor fireplace if I'm going to go camping in the winter.  I've done a ton of winter backpacking and I've spent many a night in the wilderness during the cold season - but I've never slept in a tent.

This is my idea of winter camping (Elk Lakes, Alpine Club of Canada Cabin)

Being that I am not a traditional winter camper, I figured I should call in some help on this story and get some real solid tips for you on how to camp in the snow with kids - in a real tent!  Honest to goodness camping and not the "glamping" that I like to do.  Fortunately, my new friend Melissa Schulze and author of the blog, Rockies Chick, has just completed a winter camping trip at Elbow Lake in Kananaskis.  She took her 4 year old daughter with her and they survived the night.  More than survived in fact, because they want to do it again!  So, I begged Melissa to share some tips with us on how to take children into the backcountry in winter. 

Heading into Elbow Lake with loaded down sleds

A Guide to Winter Camping with Kids - By Melissa Schulze

Camping at Elbow Lake (M. Schulze)
If a beautiful landscape covered in a white blanket of snow and sipping on hot chocolate around a fire while stargazing is something you would like to experience, then winter camping might be for you. If you are willing to brave the winter cold months and would like to try winter camping with your kids, do not fear.  There is a way!  Just remember that everything in the winter takes longer and that preparation is the key.

1.  Choose either a drive in campsite or a backcountry site that isn't too far from your car. This will put you at ease in the event things do not go as planned.

2.  Have an all season tent or if this is not possible, try to find shelter for your tent. You do not want the wind to enter your tent during the night. The temperature can drop dramatically with wind chill. Snow or rocks around your tent can act as a brilliant shelter.

3.  When setting your mattress and sleeping bag down, place an emergency blanket down at the bottom of the tent under your mattress.  This will act as an extra layer and can make a big difference.

4.  Once your tent is set up, look for a cooking space while you still have daylight left. If you are in the backcountry there is usually a designated location separated away from your sleeping area. Keep in mind that wind may pick up and cooking may become difficult. Find a space where you might have a bit of wind shelter. This can be harder to locate once the sun has gone down.

Camping at Elbow Lake (M. Schulze)
 5.  Before cooking, place your stove fuel canister in your jacket.  This might help get things warm enough to get started. The same thing goes for your lighters. It can be extremely hard to light your lighter once it is cold, not to mention how hard it can be to do so with frozen fingers. Make sure you also have waterproof matches.

 6.  If you start getting cold before the sun goes down, get moving, go for a walk, play a game, or do anything to get you moving. This might be a good time to explore the area, perhaps go snowshoeing, hiking, skiing or perhaps just build a fort.

 7.  Drink plenty of warm fluids. Hot chocolate, tea, soup, etc. Just make sure to slow down on consumption close to bedtime. A trip to the bathroom in the middle of the night can be challenging.

 8.  Once the night has set, the temperature will change fast. Build a fire and make sure everyone stays warm. If anything became wet during the day, such as socks or mittens, make sure to change into new dry ones.
Entertainment in the dark at camp (M. Schulze)

 9.  What to do with your kids once darkness has arrived at your campsite? Play ring toss with glow rings, play with glow in the dark toys, build your fire, tell stories and sing songs, sip on warm drinks and enjoy the company!

 10.  Before bedtime boil some water and place the water in Nalgene bottles or equivalent bottles, making sure they are tightly closed, and place the bottles at the bottom of your sleeping bags. You will not regret it as it will make you quite toasty for a great night spent in the cold outdoors.

Just remember, things like weather can change fast and be prepared for the worst.  Then, everyone should enjoy a wonderful night of winter camping!

To read Melissa's full story on her recent winter camping trip at Elbow Lake, go to her story:  An Introduction to Winter Camping

More Inspiration for Winter Camping

Despite the fact I enjoy sleeping in a cabin when I go winter camping, I have written a lot about the subject of cold weather camping lately.  Below are my recent stories should you want further inspiration on the subject.

Winter Camping and Backpacking Tips - Recent Story for Campers Village

Winter Backpacking and Ski Touring

Tips and Tricks for Cold-Weather Backpacking - Recent Story for Snowshoe Magazine

Our First Backpacking Trip to Elbow Lake

Raising Tough Kids - Our Annual Winter Backpacking Trip - Story I wrote last winter after our annual backcountry trip to Elk Lakes in BC (where we slept in an Alpine Club of Canada cabin.)

This is why we go winter camping

Winter Camping with Kids - Warmer than you Think - Story I wrote for Calgary's Child on using wilderness hostels for camping.

Hilda Creek Wilderness Hostel, Banff National Park

Thanks Melissa for collaborating with me on this post. Follow Melissa on twitter and instagram @rockieschick22 and check out her blog at  Rockies Chick .

Monday, November 24, 2014

5 More Cool Things to do this Winter (for a total of 15 awesome ways to embrace the cold!)

A week ago I published the first 10 cool things I recommend you try this winter as a family.  It can be read here at:  My Personal Top 10 List of Cool Things to do this Winter.  As I was writing the story, I knew I was going to have to write a second (third, fourth...) story because there are a LOT of cool things to do in winter!  And if you live in Calgary, there are so many neat things you can do in the Rocky Mountains over the cold months.  So here are the next five cool things to do in winter.  Total now:  15 Super Awesome Things to do in Winter.

Embrace Winter and Learn to Love it!

Backcountry Sledding
1.  Go backcountry sled hiking.  Earlier this month we discovered a new way to enjoy the snow while out for a hike.  Bring a sled, hike up a trail to a backcountry lake or meadow, and slide back down the trail to the car.  I recommend finding a fairly wide trail and guiding the sled if there are young children on board.  Helmets would also be recommended if the trail is steep and lined with trees.

To safely "guide" a sled down a steep or narrow trail with children in it, let the sled go first and follow the sled down, while bringing the rope in tight. And you can use the rope to help steer the sled (photo below.)

If  you are lucky, you will even find a good sledding hill at your destination where you can play for an your before hiking back down.

Guiding a sled down a steep hill safely

For more on backcountry sledding and hiking, read my recent story:  November Hiking and Backcountry Sledding at Highwood Pass, Kananaskis.

2.  Try Winter Ski Biking.  Strider makes a ski attachment for their balance bikes and it's a super fun way to do some backcountry skiing this winter as a family with even the youngest child able to participate in the fun.  We attach our son's ski bike to a backpack, hike it up the trail, and then let him ski back down to the car on his bike.  He always beats us to the vehicle and we choose wide trails with little risk of hitting a tree.

Strider Ski biking in the backcountry

Watch this fun video from last weekend of my son descending from Elbow Lake in Kananaskis.  And here's another cool video from last winter descending the Elk Pass Ski Trail in Kananaskis on the ski bike. 

Towing the bike (and child) into a backcountry cabin last winter

Children can be towed on the bike as well (see the photo above) which makes for an innovative way of getting them into backcountry huts or cabins.

Who needs to hike when you have a ski bike and a rope?!

To win a pair of skis for your child's Strider bike, visit my Christmas Gift Guide where Run Bikes YYC is giving away a par of skis. 

3.  Make a snow fort, tunnel, or quinzee.  Many of our favourite times outside in winter have been spent playing in snow forts, crawling through snow tunnels or climbing around on various snow structures we've found on our travels.  We even built a snow fortress with tunnel in our backyard one winter and it was a fun way to spend time outside without going far.

Crawling out of a snow tunnel
Snow quinzee we found at a campground last winter
Kids will spend hours playing in and on a snow fort with a tunnel

4.  Roast Marshmallows in the Snow.  We love having winter marshmallow roasts when we stay at wilderness hostels.  And you don't have to travel far either.  Many of the parks in Calgary have fire pits and stoves for winter picnics and wiener roasts.

Roasting Marshmallows at the Kananaskis Wilderness Hostel

In Calgary you can plan a skating party and roast marshmallows at the same time at Carburn Park or Bowness Park.  We also love having outdoor picnics in Edworthy Park where there are stoves and fire pits with several playgrounds.

Roasting marshmallows at Edworthy Park

5.  Climb a Mountain. This is something on my list for us to do as a family this winter.  Many of the first summits we did this summer would be very doable with snowshoes or ice cleats in the winter months.  And in winter, you can bring a sled or ski bike for some of the "not so steep" downhill sections. 

Tunnel Mountain in Banff, Great hiking in all seasons

On the list to do is either Tunnel Mountain or Stoney Squaw Mountain, both in Banff. Noah has already climbed Tunnel Mountain so I know this little mountain is doable, and I last hiked up the Stoney Squaw trail when I was very pregnant (photo evidence below.)

Hiking up Stoney Squaw Mountain while very pregnant

For information on Banff hiking trails, visit the Parks Canada website or stop in at a visitor centre for winter hiking suggestions.

Come back next Monday for MORE suggestions as I bring us up to 20 fun ways to get outside this winter.

Ski Bike, Sled, Snowshoes and Snow = Fun Times

Haven't read the first 10 Cool things to do yet?  Read it now at My Personal Top Ten List of Cool Things to do this Winter.  

 And make sure you enter the giveaways in my Christmas Gift Guide.  You can win skis for your stroller, skis for your Strider bike, Stonz Baby or Toddler Booties, or a new Christmas book on where snow comes from.  There's lots of cool ideas in the gift guide too that will help you get outside over the next few months and have snowy winter fun.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Top Ten Christmas Gifts for Snowy Winter Fun (with Giveaways!)

Christmas is coming and it's time to share a new Christmas Gift Guide with you once again.  This year, I have decided to focus on gifts that you and your children can enjoy in the snow.  I'm all about getting outside to create snowy winter memories and learning to embrace the long cold season here.

Check out my top ten gift ideas for snowy winter fun, and make sure you go to the bottom to see the giveaways!

1.  Polar Stroller Skis

Get outside this winter with skis for your stroller or Chariot.  Polar Stroller is a new Calgary-based company and is in full winter-fun mode!  Check out their website and read all about them here:  Introducing:  Polar Stroller - Skis for Strollers & Chariots

From Canada and want to win a set of Polar Stroller Skis?  Follow this previous link to my giveaway that is open until November 27th.  I have two sets of Polar Stroller Skis to give away to a Canadian resident.

2.  Strider Ski Attachment 

I like showing love to new Calgary home-based businesses so this year I want to introduce you to Run Bikes YYC.  Suzanne and her husband are South Calgary's newest Strider Balance Bike Distributor and have generously offered to give away a Strider Ski Attachment to one lucky reader from Calgary.   

To enter to win a Strider Ski Attachment (Calgary residents only,) go to the bottom of this post and enter the contest.

Backcountry Skiing on the Strider Ski Bike

We have used our Strider ski bike on toboggan hills, in the backcountry, on groomed x-country ski trails, and on snowshoe trails.  We've even used it on icy city sidewalks.  It's been a lot of fun and we'll be sad when our son is too big to use it anymore.  At 5.5 he barely fits but he's still cruising down hills on it and having a blast.  To see an awesome video of the ski bike in action, visit this You Tube Video of two children ripping through the backcountry in Garibaldi Provincial Park.  And then you'll be ordering one within the second.

My son being towed into a backcountry cabin on the Strider Ski Bike

3.   Stiga Snow-Kick Scooter with Skis

Stiga Snow-kick
This is one of those toys that I saw on line and immediately knew we HAD to have!  And thanks to the great folks at Mastermind Toys in Calgary, we will be getting the opportunity to review one so stay tuned for that story coming soon!   The Stiga Snow-Kick is a scooter with skis!  How cool is that?!  I imagine my son riding it down the trail out of a hut this winter, riding it down a snowy trail from a backcountry lake, or even flying down sledding hills in the city.

Note that it does say this product is recommended for children ages 8+ so I don't expect we will be doing any dare-devil stunts on it quite yet!  We are very curious though to see how this scooter performs and I can not wait until it arrives at the door!

To pick up a Stiga Snow-Kick for your child for Christmas, check the Mastermind Toys website for a list of locations across Canada.  They can also be ordered on line through the store website. 


4.  The Snow Show (original book from Carolyn Fisher)  

Ever wonder how snow is made?  Or try to explain it to your child and realize you actually have no idea?!  Calgary-based Author, Carolyn Fisher, has solved the question for us with a great children's book that's been met with amazing reviews.

"Tune in as Chef Kelvin and the rest of the Snow Show gang
investigate evaporation, condensation, and precipitation -
all while cooking up the crispiest, lightest, fluffiest batch of snow
ever to fall from the sky!"

For more info or to buy one of Carolyn's books, check out her website or visit your favourite bookseller.

And Canadian residents can enter to win one of two copies of Carolyn's book at the bottom of this post. 

 5.   A new sled

If you only buy one Christmas present this year for the kids, you won't go wrong with a new sled.  (providing you have snow to use it on of course.)  Kids LOVE sleds and would happily try a new one (or two) out every year.  Below are my top picks for cool sleds on the market right now:

Still my favorite sledding photo ever (two kids passed out cold!)

There are links above to stores selling each sled but I am not aligned with any particular store nor was I paid to advertise for these companies.  (so please look around and as always, find the best deal.)

Last year's new Christmas sled

6.  A pair of Snowshoes or Sno Stompers 

Snowshoeing and winter hiking is one of the most family-affordable activities you can do in the winter.  A pair of kids' snowshoes (and good ones too) range in cost from $60 to $85 at Mountain Equipment COOP or Campers Village.  And, a pair should last your child 5 years based on weight ranges per pair!  Now tell me that isn't cheaper than skiing!

Snowshoeing is fun and an affordable way to have fun in winter

Sno Stompers
Want to try something fun for the smaller tykes, check out the Sno Stompers Footprint Maker.  At $22, they look like a lot of fun.  And we'll be trying a pair out this winter so I'll be sure to let you know what we think.

"A pair of Sno Stompers allows you to tread softly atop the snow while leaving a strange animal's footprint behind rather than your usual shoe print."

7.  Sno-Toys and Sno-Art 

 If you check out the Mastermind Toys website, there is a whole line of Sno products from paint and crayons to brick makers for building igloos, snow forts and snow castles.  I've been looking at this company's innovative products for a while now and am excited that we'll get to try some of them this winter.  Check the link above to see a variety of sno toys and art products.

8.  Skis or snowboards for the sledding hill

Want to introduce your child to skiing or snowboarding in your backyard at the local sledding hill?  Lucky Bums makes snowboards and downhill skis that don't require special boots.  Simply strap them on over your child's normal winter boots.  While these products don't have metal edges (so don't take them to the ski resort,) they are perfect as a substitute for a sled at your local toboggan hill.  I'm thinking you could even strap the skis or snowboard to your backpack when you go hiking and let the kids have fun on hills as you hike out.

9.  A Pair of Skates

 No child is too young to learn to skate with a pair of Bob skates (double blade strap on skates that fit over their winter boots.)  If they can walk, they can skate on these clever little skates.  And once your child fits a pair of size 6 boots, you can purchase normal skates with single blades.  My top pick for single blade skates is the adjustable skates that last a couple of years (or at least through the whole season!) - and for fans of Disney movies, you can get Frozen or Jake the Pirate themed adjustable skates too.  (for real!)

Learning to skate in double blade skates

10.  A Pair of Stonz Baby or Toddler Booties

This one is for that Mom-to-be on your Christmas list, the new mom, or maybe even for yourself if you have a baby or toddler at home who struggles with cold feet in the winter.  Stonz Wear Booties are cute and toasty warm for the winter months.  Pair them with fleece liners for added warmth.  AND there's a giveaway currently going on to win a pair of these booties.  Follow this link to my contest that just opened a couple of days ago:  Stonz Outerwear for Kids (and a giveaway.)  The contest closes on November 28th.  It is open to Canadian and US Residents.

Stonz Booties for Babies and Toddlers


As mentioned earlier, I have a giveaway currently going on already for two sets of Polar Stroller Skis. (Canadian Residents only)  To enter that contest, go to my previous story for them:  Introducing:   Polar Stroller - Skis for Strollers & Chariots. 

Also as mentioned earlier, I have a giveaway currently going on already for a pair of Stonz Booties (Canadian and US Residents both.)  To enter the contest, go to my previous story for the company at:  Stonz Outerwear for Kids (and a giveaway.)

If you would like to enter to win a Ski Attachment for your Strider Bike from Run Bikes YYC, enter the contest below.  It is open to Calgary residents only.  Contest is open until midnight, November 30th.  I will draw a winning name on December 1st.

If you would like to enter to win one of two copies of Carolyn Fisher's book, The Snow Show, enter the second contest below.  It is open to Canadian residents only.  Contest is open until midnight, November 30th.  I will draw a winning name on December 1st.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Outdoor Family Link Up

Check out these great Christmas gift guides from other outdoor family bloggers across North America:

Holiday Gift Guide for Outdoor Kids - Crag Mama

Holiday Gift Guide and 12 Days of Christmas Giveaways - Go Adventure Mom

3 Campfire Gifts for Foodies - Go Adventure Mom

25 Great Holiday Gift Ideas for Outdoor Kids + A giveaway - Rain or Shine Mamma

Gift Guide for Outdoor-Loving Moms: Under $50 + a giveaway - Mommy Loves Trees

7 (More) Gift Ideas for Outdoorsy and Adventurous Parents - Adventures in Parenthood Project

Wishlist for the Backpacking Lovers and their Little Adventurers - Rockies Chick

2014 Holiday Gift Guide for Ski Moms and their Skiing Families (with giveaways) - Brave Ski Mom

2014 Holiday Gift Guide for Women who Love Ski Fashion (with giveaway) - Brave Ski Mom

10 Easy Gifts for Outdoor Adventurers - Skedaddle

10 Holiday Gift Ideas for Adventurous Tots - Adventurous Moms

Gift Ideas for Outdoor Women, Mamas & Babies - Rockies Girl:  Confessions of an Amateur Mountaineer

15 Outdoor Gifts You didn't know Existed and will Love - Garage Grown Gear

Outdoor Family Holiday Gift Guide 2014 - Tales of a Mountain Mama

Experiences vs. Things:  The Secret to Holiday Gifts that can actually buy Happiness - Bring the Kids

Give the Gift of Stewardship this Christmas -  AK on the Go

Great Giftable Gear from 2014 - Mountain Mom and Tots

Holiday Gift Guide for Adventure Tykes - Adventure Tykes

"In the Open" 2015 - The Gear that Gets us There - Kid Project 

Flashback to Christmas 2010

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Stonz Outerwear for Kids (And a Giveaway!!)

We had a lot of crazy winter adventures last year that included hiking at -30 C (as a family with a 4 and a half year old,) snowshoeing 11 km into a backcountry cabin (again as a family over a very chilly weekend,) and playing outside in winter gear for what had to have been six months.  In those six months, my son never once had cold feet!  He also never had cold hands on even the most frigid of days.

Enjoying winter in Stonz Mittz

The reason my son was warm all winter is because we finally found a kids' outerwear company that is absolutely brilliant at keeping cold away from little fingers and toes.  Stonz Wear is much more than baby booties and I highly recommend checking the company out for your toddler, preschooler, or school-aged child.

What does Stonz Wear sell?


Stonz Booties - for the little kids

The Stonz company is most known for their baby booties.  These booties fit children from newborns through two and a half year olds.  They look and feel like sleeping bags for your feet and can be paired with the Stonz Sherpa-fleece linerz for cold days romping around in the snow.

Stonz Booties - in the snow

The booties come in the coolest designs from pirates to rocket ships to pretty pink butterflies.  To see all of the different styles and colors, visit the Stonz website and look at baby booties, or toddler booties.   For more on how they are made, for washing instructions, and all the other useful stuff, click on the pair of booties that you like on the Stonz website.  All of the features complete with a video and reviews can be found here (and if you'd like to win a pair to put under the Christmas tree this year, go to the end of this blog post for the opportunity!!)

Stonz Booties for the little ones

Stonz Winter Bootz - for the bigger kids

The best option for lightweight kids' winter boots on the market:   Once your child grows out of their booties, it's time to move on to the Stonz winter boots and I would like to challenge you to find a pair of lighter weight kids' boots on the market.  The Stonz  winter bootz weigh between 0.28 kg and 0.8 kg per pair, which is less than 2 pounds per pair at the largest size.  The smaller ones weigh less than a pound.  And that's for two boots!  Again, as I said, I challenge you to find a lighter pair of winter boots!

Hiking in Stonz Winter Bootz - and it was -30 Celsius on this day

Stonz Winter Bootz are WARM:  As I mentioned in the first paragraph, my son hiked in temperatures down to -30 C last winter, he spent four hours outside hiking into a backcountry cabin, and he spent a lot of time outside in cold temperatures.  His feet were always warm.  The Stonz bootz are rated to -50 C and I'm inclined to believe that might just be accurate. (I have no desire to test them at that temperature though!)

Snowshoeing in Stonz Winter Boots and Mittz

Other reasons to invest in a pair of Stonz Winter Boots:
  • They are easy to put on.  My son still struggles with his fine motor skills and can barely put on a pair of Boggs without help (and they are supposedly the easiest pair of boots ever for a kid to put on and take off without help.)  He can however, put on his Stonz boots by himself - and get them off again.  That counts for a lot in my world!!
  • They have warm liners inside that can be taken out for fast drying
  • They are comfortable.  My son never once complained of sore feet.
  • They perform well in mud, on ice, and in all kinds of conditions from late fall through early spring
  • They stay on!  Ask any mom and this is a #1 priority with a toddler boot.  Nobody wants to find their child running around the playground in his or her sock feet because their boot fell off (yet again.)  This never happened to us with the Stonz bootz  thanks to the adjustable drawstring at the top, and buckle near the bottom.
  • They are waterproof.  We played in a lot of soft soupy snow and I don't recall my son ever having wet feet. 

Mud, Snow, Ice - all good!

For more information on the Stonz Winter Bootz, visit the Stonz website.  The bootz come in sizes ranging from toddler size 5 up to size 13, and then from youth size 1 up to size 8. For all details on the boots, materials used, sizing, and to see a video or look at reviews, click on the pair of boots you are interested in on the Stonz website.

Stonz Winter Bootz

Stonz Mittz for babies, toddlers, and older children

The final Stonz Wear product that we are in love with is the Stonz Mittz. We talk a lot about choosing the best pair of mittens or gloves in my outdoor playgroup community and I can tell you what parents are looking for.
  • We want mittens or gloves that will stay on!  (and that our young toddlers can not pull off by themselves.)
  • For the older kids going to school, we want gloves that they can put on and take off by themselves.
  • We need them to be warm!  And waterproof.  
  • We need them to keep snow out!  Any mitten that lets snow get into a child's coat and touch their skin has failed.
  • Kids must be able to actually use their hands when wearing the gloves or mittens.  They can't be walking around like penguins with their arms out to the side saying, "help me."  We want them to be able to climb a slide, to play in the snow (while using their hands,) to help us shovel, and to even eat a granola bar while out on a winter hike.
In all of the areas above, Stonz Mittz excel!!

Playing in the snow in his Stonz Mittz

Why I love the design of the Stonz Mittz so much:  I love that the Stonz Mittz fit on over the child's coat.  Snow can't get to the skin if there is no gap between gloves and coat.  They don't fit underneath and they don't just come up to the child's wrist.  We call those mittens "going shopping mittens" because that's all we wear them for.  To play outside in the snow, you need real mittens or gloves that fit over the coat and go well up the child's arms!

Would you let your kid do this in short little fleece mittens?

I also love how the Stonz Mittz stay on the child's hands thanks to TWO adjustable straps on them.  If you cinch both straps tight, there's no way these mittz are coming off.

Two adjustable straps per glove keep these Mittz tightened

The final cool things about the Mittz is this - they have a soft fleece patch on the thumb for wiping runny noses.  Tell me that isn't extremely useful in winter!  And oh yeah, they come in a bunch of cool colors too.

Blue gloves - bad.  Pink Mittz - awesome!  (guess which child was warmer?)

For more information on the Stonz Mittz, visit the Stonz website where you'll find a complete list of all mittz from infant sizing (no thumbs) all the way up to youth sizing (4-8 years old.)  Again, for specifics on sizing, materials, to see a video, and to read reviews, click on the pair of mittz that you are interested in.  And note to shoppers, they fit big!  My soon to be six year old is still wearing the mittz for kids ages 2-4 (and they fit well.)

Another look at the awesome pink Stonz Mittz for families with girls

Snowshoeing in the Stonz Mittz last week

Why am I telling you about Stonz Wear?

I love this company, I love that they are Canadian, and we plan to wear the Stonz bootz and mittz for another winter in our family.  We were sold last winter on the quality and I won't go back to any other pair of boots or mittens for my son.

THE GIVEAWAY:  Win a pair of Stonz Booties for your baby or toddler

Stonz Wear has generously offered to give away one pair of booties to one lucky reader.  Please enter the contest below if you are interested.  The winner can choose their preferred color and size of booties.  Note, the giveaway is just for the booties though, and not the Bootz or mittz.  Bootz and mittz can be ordered on line though and would make great Christmas gifts.  :)

The contest is open to all residents of Canada and the US.

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Disclaimer:  Stonz Wear has provided me with gear for this review.  I was not compensated in any other way.  All words and opinions are my own.