November 29, 2015

Will Deleting Your Facebook App Make You Happy?

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I was inspired by a blog post by an author who deleted her Facebook app from her phone.  So inspired, that I posted a quick blurb to my friends and family to get my contact information if they ever wanted something from me quickly.  I promptly deleted my Facebook app from my iPhone.

The first morning I woke up and grabbed my phone out of habit.  I love spending a few minutes catching up in the morning before hopping out of bed to begin the morning rush.  I was lost.  So, I played my rounds of Words With Friends that were waiting for me and then got out of bed.

Luckily, I chose to delete the Facebook app the night before my daughter and I were leaving for a 3-day Disney trip.  In the 3 days, I was so busy and exhausted that I barely had time to think about checking Facebook even for a moment during the day.  I had expected serious social withdrawals, but I hadn't had the time for them.

November 15, 2015

What's in my Hospital Bag? Plus, a FREE Printable Hospital Bag Checklist

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Preparing for baby usually includes packing a hospital bag, unless you're one of the women I'm jealous of who get to stay home to deliver their baby.  I want to "accidentally" deliver my baby at home, but hubby isn't into that sort of thing, so I'm forced to be prepared for the hospital.  The first time around, I went by the standard hospital bag checklist, and I wasn't concerned with much.  This time around, I want to feel a little extra pampered and have a few special items to try to give myself a boost from the get-go.  Plus, I don't want some of the boring (or unhealthy) hospital grade items.  So, let's get to it.  What's in my hospital bag?

November 01, 2015

8 Things To Do Before You Have Your Baby

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As the time gets nearer to my little man's arrival, I keep thinking about all the things I need to prepare.  As I recall, there's a lot to do to prepare for a newborn, and the last thing I need is to NOT be ready now that I have a preschooler with schedules we have to keep.  Life is going to get interesting without scrambling to get everything done and together at the last minute, or worse, after baby arrives.  As a somewhat experienced mom, I want to help you be more prepared for your new baby's arrival, too.

8 things to do before you have your baby
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October 18, 2015

4 Tools to Engage Early Writing and Artistic Interests

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tools for building early childhood interest in writing and art
Image © Ivy's Variety

Do you want your child to have an interest in writing and/or drawing?  It's easy to foster or instill this interest at an early age with very little effort or monetary investment.  My daughter turns 4 soon, and has begun writing words on her own.  Here are the 4 tools I suggest having to instill early writing and artistic interests:

October 04, 2015

Confessions From a Mom Afraid to Breastfeed Baby

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confessions mom afraid to breastfeed baby img
Image courtesy of Jomphong at

I consider myself intelligent and sufficiently educated.  I know the laundry list of stated benefits to breastfeeding.  I know it's the best.  But, I don't want to.

I'm scared.

Tweet: I know the laundry list of benefits to breastfeeding.  I know it's the best.  But, I don't want to.  I'm scared.

I've been down that path before with my first and it took me about 8 months to finally throw in the towel.  Everything I had known and believed about breastfeeding hadn't prepared me for the fact that my daughter wasn't handling dairy or soy in my diet.  And we didn't figure that out right away.  The doctors kept blaming it on colic or reflux, but medicines and passing the 6 month mark never alleviated the hell we were going through.  At the time, I didn't have knowledge of how many food intolerances I had, so it was hard to suspect any for her.

September 21, 2015

Being a SAHM Is My Financial Contribution to Our Family

why not working makes perfect financial sense #sahm

I'm certain I'm one of those stay at home moms you would hate.  I complain about my kid regularly, how I don't have much time for myself, and how I shouldn't be spending money on this or that.  Hate me if you like, but while I confess to my husband how demanding being a stay at home mom is, I also am reminded of how blessed I feel that we're able to pull it off.

Our decision to have me stay home with my child (soon to be children) hasn't come without some raised eyebrows and judgement from some working parents.  We have to sacrifice some things in order to live a lifestyle that we jointly choose to live.  Sometimes it's at the cost of one of us or all of us.  We have choices to make, including how to handle presents, activities, the cars we drive, etc.

September 07, 2015

Sentimental on the First Day of Preschool

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sentimental emotional first day of preschool #ivysvariety
Image Source © Ivy's Variety

It was the night before preschool and, while putting my daughter to bed, I experienced some emotions I hadn't expected.  I'd spent weeks buying school supplies and researching lunch and snack ideas.  I spent the days, leading up to this night, preparing foods to reheat for breakfast to cut down on time needed to get ready in the morning.  And, I even planned my doctor's visit to happen right after drop off time, as I was eagerly anticipating having a doctor's appointment that I could concentrate solely on my appointment.  I was excited to finally have some time to myself as I know in just 3 short months I'll have a new baby taking up every bit of it again.  Yes, I was looking forward to getting 3 days a week to spend however I chose.

But, the last couple of weeks (or months) I have watched my daughter grow into a more capable and independent little lady.  I can't recall how many times I've heard "I don't need your help."  She's picking out her own outfits, dressing herself, and brushing her own teeth.  She turned four and her independence keeps growing.  Every night, after reading, singing, and a bit of cuddling, she kicks me out of her room when she's ready to read to herself and go to sleep.

This particular night though, she wrapped her arm around my neck and pulled my face closer to hers.  Then, she kissed me and said "I love you mama.".  We don't have those moments often and I began to wonder how many more times I would get that from her.  They never seemed to be enough.  Too many times I practically beg for her affection, but realize she's just not a cuddly girl.  I'm proud of her for all she is becoming, yet, she's still growing so much.

August 27, 2015

Can Technology Help Me Track My Belongings?

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MYNT kickstarter campaign track belongings

The answer may be "YES!"  BoostInsider provided me the information on a Kickstarter campaign featuring a tech device, called the MYNT, designed to help you better track your belongings.  (Note: This post is created to drive awareness to the Kickstarter campaign, and I will earn a small commission if you click the link provided.  It costs you nothing out of pocket by clicking this link, unless you decide to purchase the device at the special campaign price).  You can even secure the device on your child or pets, if you so desire.  One of the best features is an out of range alert when the item, or loved one, is out of a specified range.

As if some of these features weren't enough, the MYNT tracking device comes with extra features to make it that much more interesting.  These extras include:

August 17, 2015

How to Get Blogging Review Opportunities

How to Get Blogging Review Opportunities img

Here are a few of my favorite places that offer opportunities to test and review products.  Some require you to complete blog reviews, some don't.  If you like sharing your opinions and want to build a library of blog review posts, here are a few places I recommend trying if you're just starting to review on your blog.

August 03, 2015

How I Plan to Start Our School Year with Less Stress

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reduce stress new family routines when starting school

Starting school is an exciting and stressful time in our lives.  Shelby is beginning VPK (preschool) in September, which means new routines for our family to adjust to.  As it is, we roll out of bed when we want to and I try to take the morning easy.  Honestly, mornings are never easy as there are so many things that need to be accomplished before lunch.  Even though we're fairly early risers, the rush is still on in the mornings.

Enter the extra stress of starting preschool.  We're going to need to wake up a little earlier to start our days, and I really want to do this without added rushing around.  Now we have to be out of the house by a certain time, ready to go, and maintaining as decent a mood for arriving to school as possible.

I currently start Shelby with pancakes as I prepare eggs and sometimes bacon every morning.  We get dressed when we feel like it and usually don't have play dates until 10 a.m. or later.  So, I know our routines are going to have to change for the 3 days a week she'll be going to school.  I've spent plenty of time trying to figure out how to enter school with less stress, and, so far, this is what I've come up with: