Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Vitamin Z

Over the weekend, we made a trip to the Detroit Zoo! We haven't been back since last year's visit so we were really looking forward to another experience. Especially with how much Remington loves animals! We've been wanting to go before it gets too hot out, but of course we have just been too busy! It worked out that we'd all be together at the camper on Father's Day weekend so we decided to make a go of it despite the rain in the forecast! I'm so glad that we decided to go because it was a much needed family day out after being so consumed in our house projects!

It's amazing how much (and how fast) things change in a years time! Last year when we went, I was 7 months pregnant and this year we had our second little one to join us! Although, he really didn't care about anything besides the nonstop snacks he was being fed just to keep him content. 😆

Note worthy moment... When we walked down the "ship" in the Penguin house (or whatever it's called) Remington seen one of the TV's with animals swimming outside the "window" and she literally screamed "IT'S A WHALE DADDY!!!! IT'S A WHALE!!!" In her tiny little squeeky voice. Seriously, it was adorable. I wish I had a video of it. 😍

What's your favorite/least favorite part about the zoo?! I dislike the crowds, love seeing R's excitement, and miss seeing the elephants.

















Just for fun because who doesn't love a good 'ole side by side... 😅



Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Surprise! This is 30!

Over the weekend Michael and my family pulled a fast one on me... they all showed up at my house to surprise me with a little 30th Birthday celebration!

As most weekends typically go, we were busting butt to get stuff done around the house. Especially trying to wrap up the house remodel project. But since Michael is only home on the weekends (actually he took this weekend off work to come home to get things done - or so I thought), most things have to wait until he's around to help me and/or watch the kids because I can only do so much on my own during the week. One of the other big things we needed to do was get the garden planted. Which I wasn't able to do during the week on my own.

Michael had been up since 5:30am doing some other things that needed done. I was doing what I do just like every other day - taking care of the kids, playing outside, went for a walk, doing laundry, etc. At lunch time, Michael asked me if I wanted to go out to eat for our birthday's. I laughed and said "Nope, I have too much stuff to do and I invited your family to come over for cake and ice cream for your birthday tonight." (Remington and I made Michael a cake on Friday for his birthday since he was gone at work and we couldn't celebrate with him).

Once the kids went down for their naps, I went outside to get the garden planted. The baby monitor wasn't working so I had to keep running up to the house every 20 minutes or so, to make sure no one was awake or crying. Michael was weed whipping and cutting the grass. I was just finishing up the garden and he stopped to ask me if I was almost done and since it was so hot outside if I wanted to get cleaned up and go get ice cream when the kids woke up. I mean... I'm not one to turn down ice cream... Plus I did feel gross after working in the garden in the heat. So I headed up to the house to take a shower. But of course, Mason was awake. So there went that idea. I decided to take him outside with me and get the laundry off the clothesline. I went back inside and Michael came in to ask me what he should get working on next. So I stood at the baby gate to the back room talking to him. I noticed his Mom's dog, Tucker, out the window and said "Oh, Ma's here?" He says "yeah..." and then the door opens and in walks 20+ people.

I don't recall what exactly I said besides "what is wrong with you people?!". I was pretty speechless. Then I cried. Then I told Michael I couldn't believe he would let me look the way I did at my own "party"! He said "I tried to get you to get ready but your too stubborn!" Ha! So I headed to take a quick shower and they set up a huge spread of food that everyone pitched in to make. We had drinks, the kids played, and we all just visited! Oh, and we had cake for Michael too! 😉

Long story short, they knew they weren't going to get me out of the house to take a break from my never ending to do list.. so they brought the party to me! I obviously was not expecting it considering I was a hot mess (literally) when they showed up (no bra and all because.. heat duh 😅 😱 ). However, I felt so loved and thankful to have such wonderful people in my life! 💖







 
 



The reality of getting a family photo... 




Friday, June 9, 2017

Friday {Summertime} Favorites



Helloooo Friday! Michael isn't working this weekend, our to do list around the house is getting smaller, and we're headed out of town with the camper next week! Good stuff!

Even though we've still had some chilly days and it's not officially summer quite yet... we are definitely getting into the summer spirit over yonder! 😎  So, here are a few random things we are loving so far this summer!

1|| We (as in the kids) spend a lot of time strapped into the stroller. Whether it's a morning "wog" (as I like to call it because I like to run but I also like to walk), an evening "wog" to see the cows (sometimes I even get both in!), a walk to the mail box, a walk in town to the park, a walk to the ice cream shop, you get the point... they're in the stroller a lot. As much as I wanted a BOB Duallie Stroller... we went the cheaper route with the Baby Trend Double Jogging Stroller. It's been really great! The price is right, it's smooth, the little ones seem to like it, and it folds up easily + I can lift it into the back of my pickup truck! Highly recommend if you're in the market for a double and your cheap like me! 😉

2|| Trips to the park. Okay yes, we love them. It's a nice change of scenery and fun for the kids. But it's so much work! Plus, I need to know all the secrets for leaving the park without two screaming kids?! Every. Single. Time. I'm glad that they're having fun... but I'm that OCD Mama that keeps on eating/sleeping schedules so ain't nobody got time to play at the park for hours on end. Sorry, not sorry kiddos. 

 

3|| All the summer outside playtime means dirty shoes. Using a magic eraser is the ultimate way to clean up the kids shoes! Natives and these perforated Old Navy shoes clean up so easily so they are out favorite summer shoe. 

4|| This snack is my new fav and I have a feeling it will be all summer long! Tomato Basil Rice Cake + Swiss Laughing Cow Cheese = delicious & somewhat healthy, right?!

5|| We're a little late to the party, but yesterday the kids and I went to pick up our garden plants and we are going to plant them this weekend! Gardening is one of my favorite summertime hobbies and I am looking forward to having the kids (mostly Remington) be a part of it this year! 


6|| Last but not least, got to throw in a little beauty biz... LipSense (as well as many of the other Sene Gence water proof makeup, skin care line for sun protection, sunless tanner, etc) is a must have summer item! Not only does it protect your lips from the sun and hydrates your lips, but it's also waterproof, smudgeproof, kissproof, and lasts ALL day! 👏



I had a "Shop My Stock Sale" on Facebook last night and if you're interested in checking it out, message me and I'll honor these specials through the weekend for my readers! 💋


Enjoy your weekend!








Monday, June 5, 2017

Transitioning from Breastfeeding to Formula | Honest Co.

I'm joining The Honest Company in sharing my (breast)feeding story to potentially be featured on the Honestly Blog - where mother's unite to share the struggles and triumphs of feeding their babies.

Since my breastfeeding journey (read: mostly struggles) with baby #2 has been a popular post topic over the last several months, I wanted to bring it all together to where we currently stand with feeding and share how/why I transitioned from breastfeeding to formula.

The topic of feeding your baby can be a tough one to discuss considering "breast is best" is strongly encouraged by hospitals, nurses, doctors, fellow moms, and society in general. However, I, as well as The Honest Company, believe "fed is best". Spoiler alert, you CAN breast feed and formula feed! Or just formula feed! It doesn't make you any less of a wonderful mother, guaranteed.

There wasn't a doubt in my mind that I wanted to attempt breastfeeding with my second baby. I say the word attempt because let's face it... sometimes it just doesn't work out. With my first born, I lacked knowledge and patience therefore I wound up giving up on nursing and exclusively pumping for 7 months. Boy, was that a lot of work. This time, I attempted to give it 110%. It wasn't easy and I had to overcome different struggles than I did with my first experience. I learned first hand that no two babies and no two breastfeeding experiences are alike!

A little bit of history about my second experience with breastfeeding: ML exclusively nursed until he was 16 weeks old. He nursed every 1-2 hours - all day and all night. He cried during and/or after every single feeding. On top of chasing around a 16 month old, it was exhausting! I wanted to give up every day. But a sweet friend gave me the advice - never quit on a bad day. I continuously reached out to my lactation consultant and his pediatrician with doubts that something was wrong. Was he not latching correctly? Was he not getting enough milk? Was something wrong with him? Is he allergic to something I'm eating? Why is is crying every time he eats?! The only thing they could come up with was that he had severe reflux which was causing him discomfort while eating, then spitting up and eating frequent "cluster feeds". They encouraged me to continue nursing because breast milk would be easier on his reflux discomfort than formula.

Once ML began taking a bottle at 4 months old, I was able to pump and bottle feed as needed. (Hello, babysitter!) I continued to struggle with the frequent cluster feedings through the day and night until I began giving him bottles more often - which was around 6 months old. Bottle feeding did help with the cluster feedings although it didn't help with his discomfort. He continued to cry during and/or after almost every feeding. For several reasons, I decided to pump exclusively and bottle feed at this point - he was 6 months old. Due to the change from nursing to pumping my supply did decrease so I began taking a lactation supplement that I had used in the earlier stages of breast feeding. I also purchased a container of Honest Sensitive Organic Formula - which is made to mirror breast milk - to supplement feedings as needed.

Between the time of Mason being 6 months old and 8 months old, I had been in the process of seeing some doctors (5 to be exact) and trying to get to the bottom line regarding his discomfort. At this point, he was old enough where he shouldn't be suffering from reflux anymore (he rarely spit up at this point) and all along I had felt that there was something else going on with him. My Mama instincts were correct. At 7 months old, I learned that my baby had some severe food allergies - gluten, rye, corn, and eggs. He also had some small complications internally that are believed to be causing him some discomfort as well. You can read more about his diagnosis here.  As selfish as this sounds, that was when I knew it was time to wrap up breast feeding.

I transitioned from breast milk to Honest formula with my first born as well, so there wasn't a doubt in my mind to use Honest formula again. Especially because it doesn't contain any of the ingredients my son is allergic to! I set up a monthly bundle of the Sensitive Organic Formula and we began mixing breast milk with formula to begin the transition to 100% formula. Instantly, we began seeing an improvement in him! I took my time with the transition because I didn't want it to be too hard on his digestive system. I started with 2oz formula + 4oz breastmilk for two weeks. Then 3oz formula + 3oz breastmilk for one week. Then 4oz formula + 2oz breastmilk for one week. At 8 months old, he was officially transitioned to 100% formula. Additionally, I began supplementing his solid foods with the Honest multi powder dietary supplement to ensure he is getting the proper nutrients despite his food allergies and strict diet.

As a Mom, we tend to set high expectations for ourselves and we often beat ourselves up if we don't meet said expectations. I admit, when I made the decision to transition from breast milk to formula, I questioned my decision. I wondered if I should have changed my diet suitable to his allergies to be able to provide a "better" source of nutrition to him. But the reality is - transitioning to formula has been the best thing I could do for myself AND my baby. He is so much happier, he loves to eat and no longer cries during/after feedings, and I am much less stressed! I am so thankful that The Honest Company provides a premium organic, non GMO, gluten free formula!

If you'd like to give The Honest Company a try (feeding, vitamins, diapering, personal care and more) please use my referral link

This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are 100% my own.