August 15, 2017

Oh the messes made...

*This post is sponsored by Lorena Canals and Elfin Marketing, but all opinions are my very own.*

Blogging about my family and our experiences is what I love to do.  It is the entire reason I started this blog.  I wanted a place to document our memories as well as offer support, advice and laughter for fellow mothers and their families.  Motherhood is such a messy thing, but I would not trade it for the world! 

Obviously, a big reason for the mess in our lives are our two children, Bubba and Vivian.  There is something being spilled or dropped about 75% of the time in our house.  Socks come to life while I am not looking and decide to hide underneath our couches and beds.  Lego pieces that I swore I saw my son put away in his room make it back out to the living just within reach of my daughter's hands. The dog tracks in mud, grass and dirt...not to mention she sheds enough for me to make a dog hair rug...every week.  Dirt and hair are part of the game if you are going to be a member of our family.  All this dirt has made me hesitant to have all the know, the really nice things that I will get attached to only to have my son stomp on them with his baseball cleats because he "forgot" to take them off again.

I have been wanting a rug for the living room area, so that my crawling daughter has a comfortable place to play, lounge, nap and at times have a meltdown.  We have hardwood floors on cement slab, so our floors are incredibly hard with no give.  I always worried about Vivian's comfort on the floor while she plays.  Originally, I planned to purchase interlocking foam tiles for her...but I cringed at the thought of the bright primary colors in my neutral and earth toned living room.  I had been hesitant to put a rug in the living room because I knew in a matter of minutes juice or milk would be spilled and Cheetos would be crushed.
Then I discovered Lorena Canals washable rugs and my prayers were answered!  I have the wing silhouette rug and it is seriously the most comfortable rug I have ever owned...and my entire family agrees.  While I have it in the living room for Vivian, it is used by all members of the family.  Our son loves to lay on it while he watches a little TV and has a snack.  Our dog, Sassy, will sit on the rug as she incessantly chews on her squeaker toy.  My husband and I will lay on it while we play with Vivian and of course Vivian loves to crawl, wiggle, snack, scoot and roll all around on the rug.

Lorena Canals rugs are made from eco-friendly 100% cotton.  They are light weight and my very favorite thing about these rugs is that they can be washed in a conventional washing machine at home.   That's right, they are M A C H I N E   W A S H A B L E! Another really cool fact about this rug is that it is handmade, meaning every rug is unique in its own way.  I am excited to be able to use this in Vivian's room as she gets older and no longer needs it in the living room.  It is a great transitional rug and can be used from the nursery into Vivian's big girl room in a couple of years.

With this rug I no longer worry about what will get spilled or crushed because I know I will be able to throw it in the washer.  I don't have to worry if my daughter gets weird, and let's face it: babies can be weird, and decides to chew the rug because I know it is made of cotton and has no toxic chemicals on it.  It is an extremely family friendly rug.  I adore the Wings Silhouette rug that I have, but they offer rugs in many different shapes, colors and patterns.

I hope y'all are having a great week so far!  Be sure to stop by on Friday when I will be announcing the winner of the Target gift card giveaway as well as, hopefully, announce the new name of the blog!

August 11, 2017

Some beach...

I have survived the first few days of classes at the institution I work for and it has been a very challenging few days full of lots of problem solving.  I love it, but I am exhausted and all I can think about is a Pina Colada on the beach at Panama the one I was enjoying in that very place just a couple of weeks ago....

We spent the last weekend of July in Panama City with my MIL and another couple and their two boys.  Hubs grew up with the couple and Bubba is a year younger than their oldest son and a year older than their youngest son.  Bubba is on the same baseball team and is in the same grade as their oldest son, so basically our families are close! We rented a condo for all N I N E of us at Calypso Resort Condos on the 21st floor and we actually had plenty of room!  Y'all, the view was A M A Z I N G!  We barely ever let the kids out on the balcony because...well, we figured the 21st floor combined with hyper boys under the age of 7 would not be a great mix! Here is a quick run down of some of my favorite things about this trip...

Our first full day there we took our time getting out to the beach.  Hubs and I stopped by Thomas Donut & Snack Shop which is right down the road from the condo, and realized that we had discovered the Atlantis of donut shops!!!  This place not only has amazing and creative donuts, but their coffee is amazing.  It is the perfect coffee to have with a donut.  I can't explain it, but it's just perfect and you need it in your life the next time you are in PCB.  We also went to a really awesome and expensive Putt Putt Golf Course that night.  My MIL kept Vivian while we all took the boys.  We had such a fun time and everyone was super competitive!  I don't think the boys got to bed until after 11pm that night!

Bubba's 6th birthday was on Saturday while we were at the beach.  It was overcast and cloudy for most of the day, but still warm enough to enjoy the ocean.  I will cherish the memories made that day.  I loved seeing my son play with some of his best friends diving under waves and boogie boarding.  I loved watching Bubba and his Daddy build sandcastles while Vivian crawled and played all around them.  I loved watching Bubba and his little sister play together in the sand.  I loved the supper we had at the Seafood Basket with my MIL for Bubba's birthday supper.  I loved the multiple stops at Dippin Dots to celebrate.  It was just a perfect day.

Just down the beach from us, a couple of swimmers rescued a Pelican in distress.  The bird had gotten tangled in fishing wire and was flipping out because he could not get free.  The swimmers brought the bird to shore and my MIL and one of our friends on the trip with us went over to help.  My MIL ended up holding the bird while others worked to get him free from the fishing wire.  I got a quick video of the bird flying free.  I got a little weepy as it flew away thinking to myself "That is what humanity is all about!" 

Vivian was much braver this trip than our first beach trip with my Mom and Step-Dad at the end of May.  In May, she was not feeling the sand or the heat.  She was 6 months old and the definition of high maintenance.  This time around she was a little bit older and much more mobile.  She was not a fan of the waves, but loved messing around in the sand.  She did a lot of exploring and became a little Miss Independent at the beach...but of course would revert back to her leech tactics in the condo!
Our last beach day there were lots of shells at the surface of the sand, so Bubba and the other boys collected lots of shells and fragments of sand dollars.  My MIL got in on the action too and helped the boys find some really cool stuff.  Hubs and I swam way out to the sandbar, and thought about the chances are shark was near us the whole time...but it was worth it.  There is absolutely nothing like swimming out in the ocean.  Bubba and his friends came out there with a few times and I was so proud of them!!  They have become excellent swimmers and by the end of the trip they were experts at tackling waves and swimming under and over them. We capped off our final night at the beach with a trip to Dave & Busters in Pier Park and of course a stop at the Crocs store!

We are so fortunate that we were able to take two beach trips with family and friends this summer.  We thoroughly enjoyed our time in May with my Mom and Step-Dad at Ft. Walton Beach and loved being able to cap off the summer with my MIL and some of our very good friends.  My next dream beach destination is Rosemary Beach and 30A.  Already peeking around at possible places for next summer!!

Don't forget to enter the giveaway I have going on for a Target giftcard.  Giveaway ends Monday!!

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Have a great weekend, y'all!

Linking up with some of the favs...
April | Andrea | Amanda

August 8, 2017

Mamas, let's get personal for a minute...

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #NatureMadeProbiotics #CollectiveBias

I think any mama will back me up when I say that a body is never the same after having children.  I am not going to say things are better or worse, but they are just different.  Our hormones are on a different level all together and our bodies take time to adjust.  Since our bodies and hormones have changed, so must our health and beauty routines. After the birth of my first child, I did not notice many bodily changes.  After the birth of my second child, a lot changed.  I have had to adjust my health and beauty routine in the morning to accommodate for the changes my body has experienced.  Here are some tips I have for mamas experiencing similar postpartum issues as I am.

This is the best way for me to truly wake up and get moving.  It gets my body in go mode.  I like to sprinkle some essential oils right into the shower as I am warming up the water.  Peppermint and Rosemary are big hits in my house.  The fresh, clean smells really energize me.  Right now, I am battling with major postpartum hair loss, so I am focusing on nutrient rich shampoos and conditioners to help me keep what hair I have left.  Conditioners with biotin and collagen add some bounce that my thin hair desperately needs.  I also like to use lavender in my shampoo and conditioner as I have heard it is helpful when dealing with postpartum hair loss.  Not sure if it works or not, but it sure does smell good.

The best thing I have done for my body is taking Nature Made® Digestive Probiotics Adult Gummies that I am able to purchase at my local Wal-Mart.  I am brand new to the probiotics wagon.  I knew they were supposed to be good for you, but really didn't know why. Probiotics are “good” bacteria that naturally exist in cultured or fermented foods (like yogurt and certain cheeses) that offer benefits for your digestive system. They crowd out unwanted organisms and allow more of the “good” bacteria to be present in your gut. 

Prior to my second pregnancy, digestion had never been an issue for me.  I was regular and my stomach seemed to handle everything that came down the gullet.  I never saw a need to research this thing called probiotics.  Then I had my second child...and my digestion had been cattywampus for months!  I got tired of waiting to see if my digestive system would get back to normal, which is when I began taking the probiotics. Since I began taking Nature Made® Dual Action Probiotics + Energy B12 ǂ† Adult Gummies, I have noticed a positive difference in my overall digestion. I also love that the gummies contain B12

Taking these probiotics with B12 has really helped me in meeting the needs of my postpartum body. I keep these probiotics adult gummies, that have delicious fruity flavors, by my sink so that I never forget to take them and having them in gummy form makes them easy and fun to take. 

† These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any diseases
ǂVitamin B12 supports cellular energy production†

Just because they are meant for while you are pregnant, doesn't mean you can't take them once you have given birth.  I quit taking prenatal vitamins a few months ago and quickly realized I still needed them!  I try to take a prenatal vitamin everyday as I feel it is helping curb the hair loss as well as giving me the extra iron boost my body needs.  I have noticed when I take vitamins regularly, whether they are prenatal or just a general women's multi-vitamin, I feel better.  Maybe it is a placebo effect, maybe it isn't.  Either way, it does something for me and that is really all that matters...Doing what helps you feel good and healthy.

The birth of my second child seems to have aged me just a little quicker.  I have never really stuck to a moisturizing routine before, as I haven't really needed it.  Well, it didn't take me long to see I was going to have to get started on a good anti-aging moisturizing routine.  My skin used to be pretty oily, but since having my daughter, my skin has changed from oily to more of a combination.  Currently, I use a mild face wash followed by a moisturizer then a hydration liquid.  Sometimes, if I remember, I will use an anti-aging eye cream as well...but this whole "moisturizing routine" is a little much for me, as I am pretty low maintenance (as much as my husband will disagree with this, it is true!) so most of the time I forget the eye cream since I have already taken, what feels like, 100 steps towards younger looking skin!

These are simple and easy things that you can do to tweak your routine in order to fit your needs postpartum.  I am not a medical doctor or a nurse or any type of healthcare professional.  I am merely a mama trying to find what works best for her postpartum body and what helps her to feel good.

Have a good one, y'all!