Friday, October 30, 2015:

Amazing How it Changes

As I start to nest in preparation for baby number three I find myself amazed at the maturity of my big boys.  Today, for example, I picked my four year old up at school, drove to the barber, parked my car, unloaded my two year old and walked into the barber's.  We arrived and my four year old hopped right in the chair (and proactively engaged in conversation with the woman cutting his hair).  I'm sitting here as my two year old patiently waits his turn and can't help but appreciate how far we've come!

Update- my two year old just notified me that he needs a diaper maybe there are still a few toddler challenges to overcome ;)
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Tuesday, October 27, 2015:

Last Sick Day

Ok!  While I am officially on the mend, it's not until JUST now that I'm getting some energy back.  I spent the morning doing the pre-school shuffle and now I am wrapping up a little elliptical loving but when I leave the gym today I WILL have makeup on and I WILL NOT look like the walking dead!  That's my pledge to finally kick this cold!
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Monday, October 26, 2015:

Ok, and I am Back!

It is crazy how a head cold can so easily derail my motivation!  Especially when the head cold ends in a skull crushing sinus infection (slight exaggeration, but I was dealing with a lot of sinus pressure, ok?).

So after a night of praising modern day medicine and antibiotics, I think I am finally on the mend!

And it is a good thing because this is Halloween week and between the parades & parties, we will be in a constant state of motion!

So, with that, your Monday motivation!

This.  As I've segued out of the corporate world and into the craziness of parenthood, my career goals have shifted significantly.  The truth is, in my past career, I didn't have tangible goals.  I was always distracted by the future of my family, even struggling with the decision to stay home or return to work before I was pregnant!

Well, my first was born and I knew I had no interest going back full time.  That was one of the hardest decisions ever.  Even though I wasn't totally passionate about my career, I loved (and continue to love) to work!  And walking away from something that had provided me with so much fulfillment left me constantly wondering if I would regret it.

But in the years that followed, my passion for work was redirected towards goals and opportunities that were much different than the corporate trajectory I had been on.  Skewing way more to the creative side and channeling the energy from my Page days, I continue to pursue on-air brand ambassador opportunities and even with each "pass" at an audition, I am still left feeling energized, excited, and, above all else, OPTIMISTIC!  Feelings that I never felt in my past career, even during times of great success.

Yes, it stinks when you've made it to the final round of call backs and it's a "no", but, as one of my mentors once said, "You're in the conversation".  And that's important to me as someone who was in an entirely different (corporate) conversation just a few years ago!

And you know what fuels me even more...The people who snickered when I told them about my new goals.  The people who giggled and said, "It's just funny, that's all".  Tempted to question why, exactly, they thought my goals were funny, I passed and redirected that frustration and hurt into more motivation to pursue my goals.  And it helps!

On the days that I am feeling discouraged, the insults are the motivation I need to refuel!

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Friday, October 23, 2015:

Friday Funny

I'm not a huge Kim K fan, but I can appreciate this ;). Have a great weekend and I promise more posts next week when I finally kick this horrible head cold 

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Wednesday, October 21, 2015:

Go Go Go Until You Gotta Stop

I'm a busy body.  I enjoy scheduled relaxing time but, mostly I like to be busy.  I find that having scheduled activities makes my day A LOT easier with the boys.  Occasionally I'll keep a morning or an afternoon free- it's important for them to have downtime, but for the most part, we're go go go over here...

Until we're not.  Horrible head colds have invaded our home, complete with the dreaded post nasal drip of death!!  My youngest started showing signs this Saturday with a runny nose that just wouldn't stop!  Add a family bonding weekend getaway and WHAM, Mom is on the fritz 😩.  

I could feel it coming on as early as Sunday but tried to tell myself it was just allergies, but the last two nights have been miserable.  I hate to cancel plans but sometimes you just have to stop everything and rest.

My youngest is good, but still sleepy from the sleep loss that comes with a cold.  After much debate, I sent him to his morning "school" program (even though he fell asleep in the car on the way there).  And my four year old (who apparently has an immune system of steel!) is off and getting in some serious social time.

While I'd rather be anywhere but on my couch, I'm taking advantage of the kidfree morning, resting up, and getting the energy I need to kick this cold!

Maybe this is mother nature's way of forcing me to slow down...shrugs.

So, if you need me, I'll be on my couch, eating candy corns and sipping orange juice.
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Tuesday, October 20, 2015:

Pregnancy & Parenting Deep Thoughts

Am I too hungry to sleep or too tired to get out of bed to eat? 😕
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Friday, October 16, 2015:

Lunch Dates with a Two Year Old

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Wednesday, October 14, 2015:

Date Night Words of Wisdom

After a well-deserved date night with my husband I crunched into this piece of fortune cookie wisdom.  "Spot on," said every mom in the universe

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Tuesday, October 13, 2015:

Proud Accomplishment- I Cleaned Today

It's actually sad how satisfied I am by this accomplishment!!

My attic was an embarrassing mess.  I'd throw things upstairs and just keep piling on the clutter!  

Maybe I've been spurred on by early nesting or maybe I remember how little energy I have towards the end of my pregnancy.  OR- maybe I should have never let it get this bad in the first place!!

I've vowed to shake out this house from top to bottom before baby #3 arrives. 
Channeling my KonMari (even though the method doesn't promote storage bins...but seriously, they are just so much better than trash bags!!).



I'm honestly considering making these "after" photos my screensaver.  I'm calmed and satisfied simply by looking at them!!  Clean attic zen!!

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Monday, October 12, 2015:

Monday Motivation!!

Don't waste anymore time pursuing anything less than your dreams!! #focus

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Friday, October 9, 2015:

Time for Parental Leave Changes

I recently read this article about the struggle many parents feel about returning to work after baby.

The fact that most women are only offered six weeks of maternity leave is shocking.  I could go ahead and pull all of the data that suggests how this is detrimental to both mom and baby.  I could identify the countries that have better parental leave policies.  But that's been shared before.  Since this is my blog, I figured I'd share my personal experience.

I always knew I was going to be a stay at home mom.  I just didn't see myself being comfortable leaving my child with another caregiver everyday while I did the 9-5 shuffle- and I am incredibly lucky to have the option to be home.  But the truth is, I really didn't want to leave the workforce.  I was afraid of the isolation that comes with SAHparenthood.  Sure, we can do playdates and mommy & me classes, but at the end of the day, you are on someone else's schedule (and that someone else has a cruel sense of humor when it comes to naps and feedings...).

I desperately wanted to work in some capacity and not a day goes by that I don't think about what my life would be like if I had something outside of my home- just for me.

Somedays I am certain I'd be more patient.  Maybe I'd yell less.  I'd like to think I'd take advantage of the snuggles more often instead of running off to do another load of laundry (but as I type this, I realize working parents have laundry to do, too.  And sometimes it just has to get done during snuggle times).

I wonder if I would be more engaged with my kids (vs. blogging as they play around me and make a mess of our "office").

I still question a lot of my career/life choices, but the only thing I know with confidence is that I was NOT ready to return at six weeks nor was I ready to return at 12 weeks.  Why?  Because I didn't even know what day of the week it was, let alone was I able to shower and get myself dressed and out the door along with my infant son (with diaper bag, breast pump, car seat and all of the other stuff that parents have to lug around with an infant).

Around six months I had the opportunity to work part time- two days in the office, one day from home.  And it.was.perfect.  It was for a great company that was right in my "baby and me" wheelhouse.  The people I worked with offered the daily stimulation I craved.  This three day week afforded me alternating days of being the SAHM and the working mom.  And the best part, one of those days we kept our sitter late so that my husband and I could actually eat dinner together and catch up on life.  And another "best part"- I actually would sit at my desk and eat breakfast, sipping coffee as I checked emails and caught up on current events.  Oh, and another plus- I had topics to contribute to the conversation outside of diaper changes, playdate activities, and tantrum stories.

Gosh, just reflecting on this makes me realize how amazing that set up was....

The problem with my ideal three-day-a-week office job....It didn't last.  There was pressure to come on board full time.  And once again, I just wasn't ready to surrender the daytime care responsibilities to someone else.  So I walked away.  I am certain that it was the right choice for me. But it doesn't mean I don't miss work.

Some people without kids might be reading this, rolling their eyes saying, "EVERYONE would like a three day work week.  Not just parents".  Well...this article isn't for you.  Because regardless of what side of the "mommy war" you fall on, I think most parents agree that working out of the home isn't a three day work week when you spend the remaining days caring for your kids.  It's all work.  So unless we agree on that, this article won't be relevant.

If the parental leave landscape was a bit different- a bit more accommodating to new parents- would I have made a different choice?  If I had an entire year to spend with my child, would I have felt better about returning to work?  Or if I had an opportunity to stay part-time, would I have stuck with it?  I think so.  And somedays it is tough to swallow that.  The "if's" when it comes to parenting....

I am plugging away in a new direction. I miss work- I miss the paycheck, the friends, the stimulation and sense of fulfillment.  But I do my best to find balance.  I write when the kids are engaged and during nap times (which are not always guaranteed).  Or, as mentioned, when they are sticking playdoh between my toes, but, otherwise engaged.

Some days are super intense and just not how I imagined SAH parenthood.  Other days are very rewarding and I am grateful to see and experience my children's growth.

And yet, as I sit here writing this "ho hum" post, I am struck with the fact that I am one of the lucky ones.  I am one of the parents who chose to go back despite having the ability to stay home (not that a single income has been easy).  I am one of the parents who had the option to give up her job when the pressure to choose became too much.

The expectations we are setting on new parents is just too much.  The workforce is losing valuable, highly efficient workers because it can't bend to accommodate the work/life balance that is so necessary for a happy family.   And people who don't have the choice are forced to plug away to make it work.

When will company's stop ignoring the serious importance of work/life balance and start practicing it?

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Monday, October 5, 2015:

Boppy Bloom Renewing Body Oil (aka the yummiest smelling oil I've ever used)

If you stopped by in the last few days you may have noticed that I am a lucky member of the WeeSpring Parent Panel!  My first tester samples arrived the other day and I am so excited to finally give them a go.

I want to first say that I am not paid for this post and if I don't like one of the products, I have no interest in brand-shaming, I just simply won't share it with all of you here!  With that, I hope you can read this as an authentic post and that it helps you make purchase decisions in the future!

Moving on to the good stuff!

I am 24 weeks pregnant with baby boy #3 (yikes!) and the skincare enthusiast that I am, LOVES the idea of Boppy coming out with a pregnancy-specific skincare line!  As moms, we need all of the help we can get.  Short of Boppy providing me with a night nurse and a full-time nanny, these Boppy Bloom products might be just the next best thing for me ;)

So tonight I wanted to try my Boppy Bloom Renewing Body Oil.  First things first, YUM.  The scent is so nice- citrusy and light, not overpowering at all (which is good because this pregnancy nose is NO joke- honestly, it's a serious problem in my house because I smell everything x100000000).  The scent I'm trying is the White Citrus Shea and it really is nice.

The Boppy Bloom Renewing Body Oil touts non-greasy stretch mark protection and after two previous pregnancies, I need all of the protection I can get!!  It's also hypoallergenic, non-greasy, paraben free, and phthalate free- always a plus!

The truth is after my second, my stomach was just never the same (come to think of it, after my first, my stomach was never the same...but number two really did me in!).  I want to prevent as much stretch mark damage as possible this time around, and if it smells as nice as the Boppy Bloom Renewing Body Oil, well... that's just a plus!  Not to mention that this is affordable at just $10!

This body oil is fast absorbing and glides on smoothly- you can feel the hydration immediately.  It is very liquid-y (note image below) and leaves a little residue but I'm ok with that because it feels indulgent and effective.  I can see myself leaving this at my bedside for nightly belly love!  I might even use this on my hands, feet, and other dry areas on my body- especially as this cold, dry weather moves in.

It's only day one (well, technically, night one) but I do plan to use this for the remainder of my pregnancy- both day and night as the directions suggest.  I'll be adding the Boppy Bloom Stretch Mark Cream tomorrow- so stay tuned for my thoughts on that!

Are you interested in giving this product a shot?  First off, these are some of the most affordable pregnancy skincare products I've seen in the marketplace.  Better yet, use Promo Code BLOOM50 at for 50% off all Boppy Bloom products.  You can't beat that!

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Sunday, October 4, 2015:

How Fun is This?! Boppy Bloom Skincare!

So excited to be part of the Weespring Parent Panel!!!  My first samples from Boppy have arrived and I can't wait to give them a go!!

Perfect timing.....

Did I mention we are expecting baby boy number three this January?!  More on this later ;). But first....time to play with my Boppy Bloom skincare collection!

Ok, but seriously, could they have picked a better tester?  A skincare obsessed, pregnant mother of two!!

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