Browsing Category Lifestyle

5 Trending Baby & Mommy Items We Love | 2017

I vividly remember being pregnant with my first son and simply falling in love with every baby thing that crossed my computer screen.  I was, although, very particular on brands I wanted – as I suppose most mommies-to-be probably are.  I had to have the top-of-the-line everything, and I spared no expense to give my baby all that I believed was the best.

This time around, being pregnant with baby BOY number 2, I have pretty much everything I need for his arrival: bins and bins of baby clothes I saved as Kaden grew out of them, bouncers, rockers, bottles, play mats, crib, pack-n-play, swaddles, baby bag… you name it, I have it.  There really isn’t much I need to go out and purchase, and having another boy has made that statement even more true: I’m saving a LOT of money on new clothes, and boy-specific items.

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All Natural / Organic Belly Butters & Oils to Prevent Stretch Marks During Pregnancy

Being that I am well into my second trimester of my second pregnancy, my little bump has decided to make its appearance MUCH earlier than it did during my first.  I was more tone, athletic, and busy with my first pregnancy, so my growing baby didn’t really become noticeable until I was almost 7 months pregnant.  This time around has been a completely different ball game, and with a rather noticeable baby bump and extra itchy skin, I looked to an all-natural belly butter and oil to soothe the itch, and help prevent stretch marks this time around.

It’s important to note that it has been said that genetics plays the #1 role in whether or not you will develop stretch marks during your pregnancy: “If your mom or sister got them while they were pregnant, chances are you will, too.”  Heard that one?  Yeah, I’ve heard it enough as well.  It has also been noted that staying hydrated while pregnant (something we are supposed to do anyway – and, I am ashamed to say I am quite bad at) allows your skin to stretch easier.

I also believe that not gaining too much weight too quickly is also an important factor in whether or not you will develop stretch marks.  Unfortunately, that isn’t always in our hands when it comes to morning sickness, cravings, and, well, being pregnant in general – a girl gets hungry!  

In any case, a soothing belly butter or oil that is made to help prevent stretch marks, as well as ease itching discomfort, is well worth the extra effort in my opinion.  If not for the stretch marks – then definitely for the itching.

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Take Back Your Shower Time

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Once upon a time, I had no children and I used to take long, very much needed showers. Boy, did I take that for granted. After I had my daughter, I went back to work full time. Overtime-full time if I am being honest. About 60-70 hours a week. My routine of showering was kept to a minimum of five minutes. I either got up in the morning and took a quick five minute shower or I took the same allotted 5 minute shower before I went to bed. No matter when I showered I swore I always heard crying. I was more paranoid than the lady in Psycho while in the shower. 

My daughter was only six months old when I was blessed with being pregnant again with my son. When my son was two weeks old tragedy struck. We had a house fire and we made the decision to move in to my parents home for six months. 

As tragic as a fire in our home was, having two children under two and one being a new born, plus being out of the stability of our home, its shocking to say that I was lucky. I had my parents to help me out with my kids, and this is where the love of taking a long exhilarating shower started all over again. 

No longer do I just “shower.” I become absorbed in the ten plus minutes of alone time. If one could not tell from our blog, we like a lot of things all natural. (Some… not so much.) But I am now soap obsessed. Even my husband is soap enchanted, and while doing everything we can to save money, we always have the means to purchase our favorite items. 

I am a tad Lush infatuated. I have good reason, though. Their products are made with all natural ingredients and safe synthetics. They care about the planet, charity, and they recycle. You can read about Lush’s Charity Pot, Charitable giving here. 

(Look for a future blog about me being recycling crazy.)

So here is the list!

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Fall Favorites & Must Haves for Women (& Mommies) 2016

As women, and as busy moms, Kaytee and I like a wide variety of items in our everyday mix of clothing, shoes, household goods, hygiene products, and more.  There is a balance between trying to dress for a day of taking your kids to the park and cleaning the entire house (not to mention 7 loads of laundry, cleaning up thrown food and drink particles, blow-outs, tempter tantrums… you get it), and actually maintaining your sense of self, and style.  Something my husband constantly tells me is, although I’m a mom, I can still be a ‘hot’ mom.  Seems nearly impossible most days, but as a 28 year-old, I do still like to dress up and do my makeup and try to act like I have my life together, even if we all really know that most days I’m walking around with my hair in a half wet messy bun, no makeup, workout clothes, and likely no bra.

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1. ILY Couture Modera Watch in Grey | 2. BP. Fringe Trim Plaid Oblong Scarf | 3. Jeffrey Campbell ‘Cromwell’ Western Cutout Boot | 4. MAC ‘Warm Neutral Times 15’ Eyeshadow Palette | 5. TopShop Moto ‘Leigh’ Ripped Skinny Jeans | 6. Molton Brown Fabled Juniper Berries & Lapp Pine Fine Liquid Hand Wash | 7. Stuart Weitzman Highland Suede Over-the-Knee Boot | 8. Cristabelle Long Wrap Choker Necklace | 9. Ramy Brook Issa Cold Shoulder Sweater | 10. Quay Australia Cherry Bomb Sunglasses | 11. Madewell ‘The Transporter’ Weekender | 12. Banana Republic Belted Shawl Collar Blazer | 13. Free People Turnout Tie Capris | 14. Chanel Rouge Allure Intense Long-Wear Lip Colour in 162 Pensive | 15. Nike ‘Juvenate’ Mesh Sneaker in Grey | 16. Athleta Criss Cross Sweater   
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Halloween Felt Board – A Simple Halloween Craft for Kids

We love Autumn in our house.  It’s definitely a memorable time of year with so many holidays in que, and that overwhelming feeling of childish emotions constantly being rushed back into your mind from your own past experiences.  Halloween has always been a fun time in my sister and I’s family home growing up.  My mom is the queen of small, yet BOUNTIFUL, holiday décor, and Halloween was no different than Christmas when it came to garnishing every door, wall, shelf and vessel in our house.  My siblings and I were all very lucky to have a talented mother who alone sewed and crafted each and every one of our Halloween costumes Every. Single. Year. 

Being a mother myself to a very rambunctious and happy 18 month old, I wanted to take some of that craftiness my own mom always showed us growing up, and incorporate a fun, hands-on Halloween experience for my own child – one that didn’t simply require finger-painting a poor, beautiful pumpkin plucked from a pumpkin patch thinking it’d be carved into something marvelous (albeit, that’ll probably be added to the list as the 31st of October rolls closer).  I have seen many people create the infamous felt Christmas trees for their toddlers to embellish during the holiday season, and thought I would take a page from that book and rework the idea to give it more of a ghoulish feel.

Thus, the Halloween felt board was created!

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Why I Stopped Judging What People Name their Kids… A rose by any other name….

We have all been there. The moment when you ask, “What are you naming the baby?”

We are excited for our expecting friend and aside from what sex the baby will be, we curiously need to know the name. The moment the name slips out of the parent’s mouths, we know a decision will be made to either ‘Like’, ‘Not Like’, ‘Need time to get used to’, ‘Love’, or ‘Hate’ the name.

Heaven forbid we totally dislike the name.

“Did you hear what so and so is naming their baby…”

“I really don’t like that name…”

“That kid has to grow up with that name… poor guy…”

I have done it. Guilty as charged. Somehow your decision to name your child “that” has personally offended me…  Yes, that is a tad dramatic, but I have made my decision to dislike the name YOU chose for YOUR child.

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How to Survive Long-Distance Plane Travel with a 1 Year old (or small child)

As somewhat of an initial disclaimer:  I truthfully wasn’t even sure if I should write this blog post.  I’ve flown with my son twice now.  Once TO our vacation spot, and once FROM our vacation spot.  And although we did fly quite a distance for the first plane trip, and we did cross three different time zones (for a total of 6 hours gained… and lost), I still cannot be considered any sort of an expert in this field.

On top of all that obviousness, these types of “How To’s” are totally circumstantial.  I mean, think about it:  the age of your child and how their personality type is absolutely factors into the question of how your baby will do on a big metal tube in the sky:

Is your child colicky?  Guarantee that’s going to be something that factors in, and usually not something anyone else writing posts like this tends to consider.

Does your kid hate being stationary for more than 20 minutes at a time like mine? They’re going to be in for quite a surprise when you get aboard your flight.

Is your flight early in the morning?  Is it at nap time or bedtime?

These are all important thoughts to consider. 

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Favorite Store Bought Organic Snacks for Baby – 8 mo+

If you haven’t noticed by now, I opt for organic foods when it comes to my family, especially my son.  His breakfast, lunch and dinner are all comprised of natural, non-gmo, organic produce, poultry, yogurt, etc., so naturally, the snacks I give him are no different.  Granted, several of these items can be given to your babes as early as they are crawling, they still make their way onto my list of favorite organic snacks even now that Kaden is 9 months old to take with us whenever we are on the go – they are convenient, nutritious, and equally as important – my son enjoys them.  Remember to always use discretion when choosing foods for your specific, special, little person – you know better than anyone else just how well your child can chew (or gum) different foods, and these snacks are no different when choosing which to feed them.

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The Best HONESTLY All-Natural Deodorants to Use While Breastfeeding

At my son’s 4 week checkup, our physician’s assistant and I exchanged our typical question and answer dialogue beyond Kaden’s physical exam – as was the norm given my paranoia as a first time mother.  “Is he gaining weight appropriately?”, “His belly button is still kind of dark – is it okay?”, “…Is that much spit up normal?” It’s an endless barrage of questions that our sweet PA very sweetly and patiently answers for me at each visit, although I can often tell she is biting at the bit to run out of the room to her other waiting patients.  At this particular checkup there was one subject we were discussing that ultimately ended in her uttering the following words: “Well, of course you should be using all-natural deodorant if you are breastfeeding”.

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3 Most Effective Things to Do to Increase Breast Milk Supply

This topic took a couple months for me to truly hit the nail on head.  I have had one son.  So I have had one experience with breastfeeding, and for the most part, it has been a positive one.  But in the beginning, while your boobs are trying to figure out just how much milk they need to be producing to sustain your hungry child, it can be rather challenging to understand exactly what needs to be done in your diet to ensure you never run low on milk… baby’s feeding schedules can be fickle, and it’s important to be prepared.  I’ve read pages and pages of advice on how to increase my milk supply, but in the end, these three things worked the best for both my sister and I.

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