You’re Doing It Wrong: Being a Great Mom Starts with Self-Care

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Being a mom is a challenging task that often lacks rewards or praise. We are often trying to balance our time between taking care of the family, the household, balancing the cheque book and paying bills that it has become so easy to neglect our own needs.

This last year has been particularly difficult for my family and until now I didn’t have the time or the energy to stop and breath and am now so overwhelmed with a rush of emotions that I can barely keep my head above water.  For the longest time, I thought that the only way to push through and survive these feelings was to focus all of my time and energy on my family.

I was very wrong. I am ashamed to admit this but recently I have found that I have an incredibly short fuse with most people, including my own children. Now more than ever, I needed to focus on me and my own needs.  I’m not a selfish person and taking time to care for yourself is such a necessary action. After all, who will be there to take care of everything when you are depleted, depressed or buried too deep in a hole that you can’t see the light anymore.

It all started when I realized that I was useless to my family if I couldn’t stand on my own. How could I be expected to take care of anyone else when I couldn’t be bothered to care myself? It’s not rocket-science, I mean seriously, they even announce on airplanes that in case of disaster out your own air mask on before assisting anyone else.

If you are anything like me, you might not even realize that you are neglecting your own needs. Make the conscience decision to evaluate yourself, this may include your physical health, emotional state and even your mental health. You are important and you are valuable. It’s time to find the desire and to invest in some hard work in caring for yourself first.

I know there are not enough hours in a day to get even the basic of things done, and now I’m asking you to find some time for yourself.   To help you on your way, I wanted to share my tips and trick for finding time for you.

  1. Take A Bath

 

In the last few weeks, I’ve found myself enjoying a nice hot bath with bubbles. Find your favorite scent for bubble bath, light up some candles, play some soft music and relax. Let your mind escape for a few moments.

 

  1. Say No

 

Do not take on more than you can handle. You are not selfish for knowing your limits and it’s perfectly acceptable to say no every once in a while.

 

  1. Listen To Music

I often use music as an escape from this world. I love putting on my favorite music and having a little dance session in the privacy of my own bedroom. Load up an iPod or any electronic device with all your favorite songs and just get lost in the music.  I’m often interrupted after a couple of songs by children wanting to join in on the party and I don’t mind it has often been great family fun.

 

  1. Get Some Sleep

 

I know this is easier said than done, especially if you are like me and suffer from insomnia most nights. My advice is to get sleep anyway and anytime that you can. It doesn’t have to be at night time. You can sleep in for an extra 15 minutes on the weekend or grab an afternoon nap.  Even just a few minutes of extra sleep will have you more energized and feeling much more rested.

 

  1. Have Alone Time

 

I’m not suggesting that you go crazy and wild for an entire weekend or even a day. Try to find 30 minutes each day for time to be alone. This can be first thing in the morning, on your lunch break at work or even right before bedtime. Take 30 minutes and go over your daily schedule, or review what you accomplished today and think about what tomorrow will hold.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: CRYSTAL FROM BUSY MOM DIARY

I am profile-pica full-time working, potty-mouthed and tempered, home-cooking, thrift-finding thirty-something mom on a budget. I am married and have two children, a tween and a teenager. Life is great. I blog to share our personal life experiences and adventures in parenting.

Blog: www.busymomdiary.com

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Mommy Care and Wellness Guest Post: To the Momma Struggling with Self-Care

To the Momma Struggling with Self-Care

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I see you. I am you.

I’ll admit this to ya’ll, I wasn’t very good at self-care even before I had kids (Gasp!)  After the boys came, the self-care level plummeted even more than before.  So for the upcoming year,  I’m making it a priority to take better care of myself.  Being a realist, I understand that as a full time working mom of two young, active boys, self-care will not always be my top priority. But to improve a little is to not digress, correct?!

Taking care of ourselves is important, I think we can all agree on this, right? So many of us just let it all go once the kiddos come because there is always someone else that has a pressing need.  Snotty noses, dirty diapers, spelling words to call out, soccer practice to go to, doctor’s appointments to make, field trip forms to sign, birthday parties to plan…Heaven help, I’m tired just typing that sentence.

So, we know we need to take care of ourselves, so now the real deal is to start doing it, capeesh?! (Remember, I’m talking to myself, so sometimes, she needs tough love J)

So Here Are My Goals for Ya’ll to hold me accountable to:

Washing My Face Every Night

So, this may be a no-brainer for many of ya’ll and mad props to you. I have never been a big girlie-girl, nor struggled with acne, so that could be the reason. I am a lazy face girl. I’m doing well if I run a Neutrogena wipe over my face at the end of the day. Judge all you want.  Picture the mom who drops their kids off at school with yesterday’s mascara on, and you’ve got me.

I have all the Rodan and fields regimens, and have more face stuff than one person should under my bathroom sink. The problem is the actual using them.

Yes, I want to look younger. Yes, I want pretty skin. But lord, I’m tired at the end of the day.

Here are the ways I want to try to achieve this goal for the New Year:

  1. Take off makeup and wash face immediately upon arriving home if we are in for the night.
  2. Set a timer on my phone for a certain time every night.
  3. Make it part of my nightly routine with brushing teeth.

Anyone else have any other great tips?? Help a sister out!!

 

Getting up before the kids

This one, oh she’s a doozey.

In my perfect morning, I will get up an hour before the kiddos, take a run/walk for 30 minutes, drink coffee and do my devotional before the kids get up.

Reality is that my 4 year old is a super light sleeper, wakes up most mornings at 4:45 ready to jump off the walls, and it stays dark until 6:20 now making my outside exercise attempts null. And I’m not running by myself, either, so don’t even think about suggesting that.  We live in the country and we have lots of animals. Nuff said.  Don’t even try to convince me. A neighbor killed a huge bobcat yesterday that had been killing her chickens for months. Plus, we watch a lot of Dateline NBC and I just ain’t doing it!

So this one may not happen all the time, but I plan to make it a goal to get up before the kids at least 3 of the 7 mornings a week.

  1. Set my alarm earlier, which means going to bed earlier.
  2. Enforce the kid’s bedtime and nap schedules.
  3. Have my husband tend to the boys if they are up while I’m doing my morning routine.

 

Do some exercise 3 times a week for 30 minutes.

I do love to exercise, believe it or not.  Feeling better, having more energy, and mental clarity just seem to do wonders for my body and mind.  Being out of the habit of exercise is not good for my mental status. I tend to yell at the boys more, be snippy with my husband, and generally just don’t feel as well when I don’t.

Making time for exercise needs to be a priority. Here are my ways to achieve this goal:

  1. Exercise to a video or Pinterest workout if I am not able to run outside. (read above if you missed my comment about the bobcatJ)
  2. Meet a friend to walk in the afternoons-set the date and keep it.
  3. Find time to exercise during the workday. Small 5 minute segments can add up!

 

Drink at least 80 ounces of water every day.

 

I work at a dialysis unit, am a registered dietitian, therefore I know the praises of drinking enough water and why it is good for my body. I just have trouble actually doing it most days. Anyone else  struggling with this?  In an effort to better take care of myself, this is one of my goals. Here is my action plan for this one:

  1. Get one of those super cute big water bottles.
  2. Flavor my water with my favorite fruits, which I will prep and slice on Sunday for the week.
  3. Make an effort to drink 60 ounces during the workday before I get home. I get side tracked once the kids and I are in full on homework/supper mode.
  4. Not allow myself to drink a glass of wine if I haven’t consumed my daily water goal. (Yikes-this one may actually do the trick!)

 

So those are my top 4 self-care goals to work on this next year! I am looking so forward to seeing what 2017 has in store for me and would love to hear about some of your goals as well!

 

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: KYLEIGH FROM SWEET TEA AND COTTON

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I’m Kyleigh.

I’m a small town southern momma with a passion for writing, teaching people to be a little healthier, raising my kids to be sweet and love Jesus, Sonic Diet Cokes (I know, I know…I’m a dietitian), family, and old school gansta rap.

I would love if you would check out my blog, www.sweetteaandcotton.com!

 

 

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DIY “Give Thanks” Jar

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I realized I haven’t really done a DIY post in a while and I’ve been seeing so many relating to Christmas and other winter holidays already, that I decided to share with you how to make your own “Give Thanks” jar for Thanksgiving! This is a really lovely tradition to start with your family. The idea is to write down one thing you are thankful for each day leading up to thanksgiving. I am sure you could adjust accordingly and even do this throughout the year if you wish! We plan on reading all of our “thankful sticks” on Thanksgiving as a fun family activity.

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To make this I used:

  • Popsicle sticks (from the craft section at Dollar Tree)
  • Fall related stickers (I actually used some wall decals that I had on hand!)
  • Twine (Also from the Dollar Tree)
  • Chalkboard labels (From the Dollar Tree)
  • Mason Jar
  • Label Maker
  • Permanent Marker (I used Orange for “Fall”)

 

How I made it:

The First thing I did was stick my chalkboard label onto the mason jar. I used my label maker to write out exactly what I wanted to be said on the jar. I could have used chalk but I am not a fan of my handwriting and don’t have a chalk pen. The next thing I did was place the mason jar ring on the jar without the middle ring. I took some twine and began wrapping it tightly around the top of the jar until I was satisfied with how it looked. I just tied and tucked the rest of the string in, no glue needed! I decorated my jar with some green vine decals all the way around to give it more of a Fall vibe. The last step is to place your “thankful sticks” or Popsicle sticks into the jar along with the marker!

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I hope you guys enjoyed this easy peasy DIY and start an awesome new tradition with your family! I know some people do a thankful tree, there are so many ways you could go with this! Thanks for reading and have a happy Thanksgiving!

Cooking Tips and Tricks for Young Moms or the Not So Kitchen Savvy!

 

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As a young mom one of my biggest struggles has been adjusting to being independent in the kitchen and learning how to cook actual tasty food for my family. At this point I still have a lot to learn and a lot more to create, but I feel so much more confident in the kitchen now. I take a great amount of pride in being able to cook for my family and it is a skill I want to help other young moms to feel more secure in learning.

I am going to share with you my top 5 kitchen tips and tricks as well as present you with some tips and tricks other moms have suggested in my Facebook group! I hope this will be super helpful and allow you to branch out and be creative in the kitchen. If you have any awesome kitchen tips/tricks feel free to share them in the comments!

MY TOP 5 COOKING TIPS AND TRICKS:

  1. Read your seasonings! If you are unsure on how to season something or you are looking to step out of your comfort zone with seasoning, take a look at the labels on your spices and seasonings. Most of the time they will have suggestions on what types of meats and dishes to use it on as well as what seasonings it pairs well with!
  2. Invest in a crock pot or slow cooker! This will help you save time, as well as make your food super tender, juicy and flavorful. Almost all crock pot recipes are just dumping all ingredients together and then setting it to cook on high or low for a certain amount of time.
  3. Set timers! If I am cooking in the crock pot this is usually already done, but I have made it a habit of setting timers for myself to check my food as well as take it out. As a mom you can become easily detracted and this is a simple way to remind yourself of steps that might come in the middle of cooking, as well as making sure you don’t burn your food!
  4. Taste as you go! Of course you only want to taste if its safe, don’t go tasting raw meat. You can however taste your marinades and seasoning mixtures before you put them on raw meat to make sure that it will be to yours and your families liking. Don’t always trust a recipe, if you don’t like the taste of something then don’t add it!
  5. Measurements are relative! To some extent of course. I remember how hung up I would get on making sure everything was exact, when I first began cooking. Since then I have learned to add what is called for, do the tasting trick listed above and then adjust accordingly. Not everyone likes salt or pepper, and some people prefer more. If you use tips 4 and 5 together your meal will taste how you and your family want it to which in tern will give you more pride in your cooking skills!

MOMS FROM FACEBOOK GROUPS TOP 5 COOKING TIPS AND TRICKS:

  1. “My best tip would be when meal planning always plan a few quick/easy meals because it’ll help keep you from eating out…some days you don’t want to take a long time to cook so it’s nice having those options” – Submitted by Abby Stebbins

  2. “When you take the time to make lasagna or something labor intensive, make a double batch and freeze one tray. I do the same for apple crisp too. When I buy meat for a pot roast, I buy 2 and freeze one for later in the month. It’s easy to throw in the crock pot with the rest of the ingredients and takes less than 15 min of prep.” – Submitted by Sarah Mahan

  3. “Before you go to the grocery store, make sure you have a list for that week or month and don’t go shopping when you’re hungry to avoid purchasing unnecessary items.” – Submitted by Chelsea B.

  4. “Use cute resealable containers to store staple items such as flour, sugar, coffee, etc. because it keeps everything fresh, makes your kitchen look nice, and is less messy compared to scooping out of bags.” – Submitted by Clarissa Henderson

  5. “Create a recipe board on Pinterest, a recipe book or binder to organize all your favorite recipes. Pinterest is also great for finding simple recipes for beginners.” – Submitted by Keira Addams

Mommy Care and Wellness Guest Post: Natural Remedies Every Mom Should Know

Lemon Balm

As mothers, we tend to be a bit of a worry wart.  It’s in our nature.  Momma bear has a natural instinct to nurture and protect her family.  With all the ups and downs, as well as the occasional curve ball life can throw at us, you may find yourself a bit tense or vexed now and again.  For some, this feeling is a bit too much to handle.  However, rather than turn to pharmaceuticals and prescriptions, give this amazing herb a try.

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Lemon Balm, also known as Melissa leaves happens to be an ancient herb used for multiple medicinal purposes.  Of its many uses one that is beneficial to us moms is its ability to ease anxiety.  Lemon balm is extremely effective at taking edge off.  In addition to stress relief, this miracle herb is known to treat colic, digestive discomfort and protect the liver.  Jam packed with antioxidants, this is an herb that is too good to pass up.

 

Hibiscus Tea

Feeling under the weather?  Kids have a high fever?  Or perhaps you’re in need of menstrual pain relief? Hibiscus tea is a great way to remedy these ailments.  Due to its cooling effects, a cup of hibiscus tea is the perfect remedy for a fever.  Serve up a cup as an easy and safe way to reduce a fever for when the kids come down with a nasty bug.

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Cramps, poor mood and discomfort are also remedied by a simple cup of hibiscus tea.  The benefits don’t stop there.  Hibiscus is known to fight cancer cells by reducing their ability to grow.  As an antibacterial and anti-inflammatory, there is no stopping this lovely efflorescence.

 

Oregano Oil

Oregano has an amazing ability to superpower our immune system. Loaded with paramount antioxidant compounds associated to reducing oxidative strain in the body, this herb has the ability to turbo-charge your immune system.

 

Use oregano in your cooking for an added boost to the immune system.  If you fall ill, consider ingesting a few drops of oregano oil to give increase your body’s ability to fight off the infection.   Oregano aids in digestion, increases energy levels and protects the heart.

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Tea Tree Oil

This oil is so versatile.  Used by many for a multiple of reasons.  This magical herb is loaded with beneficial properties such as an anti-fungal, anti viral, insecticide, anti microbial, anti bacterial, the list goes on.  Tea tree oil is also used to treat and heal wounds. Not only does the oil alleviate and protect wounds, it also increases your body’s ability to prevent scarring.

 

As an antifungal, treat toenail fungus, athlete’s foot and many other bummer infections. Planning on spending the day in the great outdoors?  Dab a few drops of tea tree oil around ankles and wrists to keep away uninvited bugs.  Again, this is another remedy that has many more benefits than what is mentioned here.

 

Baking Soda

You can never have enough baking soda.  Commonly used in cooking or cleaning, it’s difficult to wrap your brain around the idea of this being of use for beauty and health.  Nevertheless, baking soda is an all round wondrous compound.  Due to its alkaline properties, baking soda is great at balancing acidity.

 

Therefore it is very effective at treating heartburn when mixed in a glass of water for consumption.  Add a few teaspoons to your shampoo to reduce oiliness and promote a healthy scalp.  If your infant has fallen victim to cradle cap, a simple paste mixture of baking soda and water will calm the infection, reduce the oil secretion and clear it up within a few days.

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We all love to look our best, especially during the holidays during all those family pictures.  Naturally whiten your teething with a paste mixture of baking soda and peroxide.  Don’t be nervous by the use of hydrogen peroxide, it’s technically oxygen water.  Brush your teeth with this mixture once a week until you achieve the whitening results desired.

 

Coconut Oil

Truly there is no end to the amazing uses of coconut oil.  For this remedy I want to focus on our hair and skin.  There are so many beneficial uses for this oil on your body, from rashes to infections, used as a makeup remover and more.  Applying coconut oil is to your hair and scalp is an effective way to treat dandruff, and reduce frizzy hair.  Simply apply it as a hair mask while in the shower and rinse before you step out.  Your locks will be silky smooth.

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One of my favorite ways to use coconut oil as well as soak up its entire anti aging, mineral infused and cellulite preventing properties is to use it in place of shaving cream.  Intimidated by the idea at first considering it’s a solid until melted down, I was shocked at how easy this is to achieve.  When in the shower, apply coconut oil to your skin by scooping out a handful and smoothing over the area.  The warmth of the shower steam and your body make it easy to apply.  Then, shave!

 

The oil melts right off your razor when rinsed under the warm shower water.  Therefore, no build up.  Not only are you going to be silky smooth, your skin will be hydrated and nourished beyond belief.  Coconut oil aids in treating stretch marks, dryness and cellulite.  Lather it on all over!

 

Green Tea

I’m sure you have heard the benefits of this tea for weight loss and cleansing the body and ridding of toxins.  Green tea is a great way to boost the immune system and energy levels.  It is also beneficial to our precious skin.  Green tea has anti aging properties. That is reason enough to want a glass a day.

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Green tea is made up of antioxidant components that when consumed regularly can reduce and delay the signs of aging and prevent cancer.  Don’t toss out those left over tea bags just yet.  Store them in a zip lock in the fridge to remedy dark circles under the eyes.  Place a bag under each eye and let sit for approximately 15 minutes to reduce swollen and dark under eyes.

 

As moms, we work hard.  These remedies are a way to assist in those days when we need something more, yet strive to keep it simple and natural.  I hope you find these natural cures and beauty benefits useful in your own lives as we have in ours.  Good luck momma’s!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: DANI ADAMS FROM ADVENTURES AND PREGGERS

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My name is, Dani. I’m a mother of two wonderfully rambunctious boys. We are always on the move seeking out our next adventure.  No one is perfect and nor are we.  Laughter is our priority, no matter the triumph or fail.  My motto is “Even if you fall on your face, you’re still moving forward”.

Visit Dani and read more of her awesome posts at: Adventures and Preggers

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Check Out Whats Happening in Week 31 of My Pregnancy!

I feel like I haven’t sat down to write a post in a while! We have been so busy with our move, and it has been an all around crazy month! This week we have been packing and putting applications in to move! I am so excited to get this show on the road! I had my prenatal check-up yesterday, which was pretty routine except that I had to get my blood drawn again. The last time I went in I had done my glucose screening and they drew blood to test for anemia as well, since I am prone to getting lightheaded and fainting. I guess there was an error on that blood draw so they needed to draw blood again. My glucose screening was normal, so no gestational diabetes. The Doctor did tell me my blood pressure was low and that I need to be drinking more water as well as getting the blood draw for anemia.

I asked the doctor about a weird symptom I have been having, which is the popping of my lower back and pelvic region whenever I turn in bed now or bend/strain. My provider told me it was due to the hormones being released to loosen up the cartilage in the pelvis before birth. She told me it is nothing to worry about unless there is significant pain and/or bleeding.

The past couple of weeks I have been using a new product on my stomach to help with the itchiness on my stomach caused by my stretching pregnant belly. I was sent this product for free to test out, with the intentions of testing it on Braydon as a “boo boo” spray or bug bite spray. It turns out that it works really well to relieve the itchy pregnant tummy and I highly recommend it  if you suffer from this symptom like I do. It also claims to help with stretch marks so I am excited to track my results through the rest of my pregnancy and after with it as well. Again I was sent this product for free to test out, but this is my honest and true opinion. If you would like to know more about it, go ahead and click here to read my review! As usual thank you for reading my little blog! Let me know how your pregnancy is going in the comments below!!

Theralight Thaumaturgic Bio Mist Review!

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I was recently contacted to try out an all natural skin care product developed by a company called Theralight, Inc. (Please see disclaimer at the bottom of this post!) The product is called Thaumaturgic Bio Mist and is basically an electrolyzed salt and water solution. This is a multipurpose spray that is good for everything from sun burns, scrapes and cuts, redness, inflammation, scar reduction, skin hydration, itchiness, plus so much more! The thing that really turned me on to trying this product is the fact that it is all natural and hypo-allergenic, so I can use it on my pregnant body as well as my little dude without concern of it containing harsh chemicals. The active ingredient in this product is an oxidized molecule called HOCL 0.02%. You can find more great information on how this product is made as well as what it works well for on Theralight’s website by clicking here.

Now lets get into the review! First I would like to say that I mainly tested this product on myself as I felt I had more of a need for it then my son. Since it is winter time here in Oregon he hasn’t been burnt by the sun or received any nasty bug bites luckily! After my impression of this product though, I look forward to keeping it stocked in the diaper bag as I am very happy with my results.

FIRST IMPRESSIONS:

The packaging of this product is very light and simple, I love that you can just toss it in your purse or diaper bag. The spray pump gives off a light mist and you don’t feel coated in product when applying it. I decided to mainly use this as a toner for my face. I have really dry and red skin by the way so I figured this would be a more moisturizing and soothing alternative to all the alcohol based toners out there that dry my face out even more. I have also been using this every morning and night on my stomach to relieve the itch from my stretching tummy. As most of you know I am in my third trimester of pregnancy now and this is one of the main symptoms I have been struggling with. I hate putting lotion on my belly because it feels sticky and heavy to me. This product has no smell to it and feels just like water being misted onto the skin when applied.

RESULTS THAT I HAVE NOTICED:

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After testing this product for only two weeks for itch relief on my stomach, I have noticed a great improvement with it! I use it every morning and night, when I feel the most uncomfortable and it works pretty much instantly for taking away the itch. Since I have only been using this product for a couple weeks I haven’t seen too many changes with the stretch marks on my stomach, but have noticed a decrease in redness. I also want to add that I did talk to my doctor before using this on my stomach, because I am pregnant. Theralight recommends on the bottle that you contact your physician to get the okay before using if you are nursing or pregnant. My doctor said it was perfectly safe for me to use, but if you are nursing or pregnant make sure to consult with your physician before using.

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As I said before I used my Thaumaturgic Bio Mist as a toner and for skin hydration on my face. I have been spraying this on my face every night before bed and occasionally in the morning. I feel a soothing sensation after spraying this topical mist on my face after a good exfoliation with my cleanser. I have noticed a decrease in redness as well, but the soothing feeling I get instantly is great. I don’t feel sticky or icky after applying it. I don’t feel like my skin is burning or super stiff (which is how it normally feels with toners).

CONCLUSION:

I think this product is really great because it is good for so many things! I have been unable to test this out on my son but I can’t wait to have it on hand during the summer because I know the soothing relief I have felt with it will help with any bug bites or sunburns that we may get. I am excited to continue to use this throughout the rest of my pregnancy for itch relief and soothing my dry skin problems. With it being such a versatile product, it really is a moms best friend. I don’t have to carry a ton of products around with me when this works for so many things! As I mentioned before its all natural and hypo-allergenic which is an A+ in my book as well! If you have tried this product out let me know what you use it for in the comments below!

“Disclaimer: I was given the opportunity by Theralight, Inc. to review this product. However, the brand or company has not influenced me in any way to provide any type of review other than my true and honest opinions. I am disclosing all information provided in this review according to the information provided in Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

A Confession: Ways I’ve Brought Spark Back into My Marriage after Giving Birth

My kids are the most beautiful human beings I’ve ever seen. Never in life have I adored someone as much, thought of as much, or felt incompetent around as much (you all know that feeling, right?). I feel like they’ve opened up a whole new world to me, a world of possibilities, love and devotion – so much stronger than any other love there is. I am blessed.

Like most mothers out there, I too am in a constant spin to give them as much moral, intellectual and physical education I can, be their teacher of compassion, love and fearlessness. I wish to teach them to believe in themselves, love themselves and appreciate everything they’re given. It’s a step by step process, and we’ve got a whole life ahead of us… I couldn’t be more excited!

However, a Catch 22 of motherhood is that, after giving birth, most mothers forget about themselves and focus on children, only; they often neglect their social lives and their husbands too, leading the relationship into a rut and often a divorce.

After giving birth to my third child, I’ve noticed a similar thing happening to me and my hubby Mike. I barely spoke to him, neglected him, I was all about Lilly. It was… unhealthy, to put it nicely. And I probably wouldn’t have done a single thing to change this if Mike hadn’t talked to me, worryingly.

I remember it like it was yesterday; we were having lunch and he got very serious for a moment, his face frowning and eyes sparkling… he looked at me and asked “Do you not love me anymore?” His question stroke me like lightning; I felt so bad I could cry right now while I am writing this… “Of course I love you, I love you more than you can imagine!”, I said. “But you barely look at me, let alone touch me.” My heart stopped for a second. “I am awful and you are right. I’m sorry that I’ve been so distant lately. I’ll do my best to work things out.” And I did.  It felt so weird going back to normal (normal being the state of things where I am actually focusing on something else other than Lilly), but I did it!

For all of you gorgeous moms who have been in the same or similar situation as mine, I am giving you a few insights on what I’ve done to bring the spark back into my marriage and rebuild myself from an obsessively dedicated mother to a healthy mom and a great wife.

I hired a nanny

To manage three kids, my business and still be hot with my husband, I needed help. I simply couldn’t do it all on my own, and once I admitted that fact to myself – things became much easier. Once we got a nanny, there was more me time, and more time for Mike. Things started going back to normal slowly but surely.

I was still crazily attached to Lilly (she was 13 months at the time) but I was slowly getting to a healthier spot; what can I say, I adore her (and my other two kids, of course!)! Guilty as charged!

I went pampering

I’ve always linked new beginnings with new looks; my determination to go back to being my sassy self was a sign I needed a change. So – I went to Pier (my beloved hairdresser); he laughed me out from the door for not having come in for a hair appointment for over eight months! He gave me a bottle of amazing hair vitamins, a brand new haircut and threatened to smack me if I don’t show up next week again! Ha-ha! Well, with such a serious threat, I had to go back, right?

P.S. Mike loved the new hair!

I initiated dates

Instead of waiting for Mike to take initiative, I made that step. I would organize movie and dinner dates, galleries and museums, little gatherings with our best friends and it was amazing. We had the opportunity to reconnect, whether it was just us two or in a group. It was like we were dating again except we had these three gorgeous little children to come home to. The spark was back, and I swore I would never let it dim again.

I touched him more

Closeness isn’t just about talking and promises; it’s about physical affection, too (and I don’t mean the bedroom, only). I started hugging Mike more, kissing him more, paying him a naughty look from time to time, holding his hand… If he’s at the kitchen isle, I come behind him, wrap my hands around his torso and kiss his back; or, if we’re watching TV, I curl up to his shoulder and just, sit there. Things like those, you know? They’re seemingly insignificant but mean the world!

My dear mommies, whatever’s happening – don’t despair. Just remember: you are loved, you’ve given birth to little phenomenal humans and you’ve got a life ahead of you. Don’t be stubborn, accept critique and change, and you’ll have your life back in a second. Good luck!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: TRACEY CLAYTON FROM HIGH STYLE LIFE

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 Tracey Clayton is a full time mom of three girls. She feels she knows a thing or two about raising happy, healthy and confident kids, and offers helpful advice in her parenting articles. She’s also passionate about traveling, fashion and healthy living. Her motto is: “Live the life you love, love the life you live.” Visit Tracey on her blog and read more awesome articles by her at: High Life Style

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Check Out Whats Happening in Week 30 of my Pregnancy!

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This week has been super crazy! We officially put in our notice to move, Halloween of course came and went, I am testing out a new product, we launched the mommy care and wellness page, and there is just so much to do before baby comes! We are super excited about all these new things taking place, but also a bit overwhelmed. I will be posting a new schedule on the welcome page of this site soon so that you are able to know when new posts and guest posts will be happening.

Anyways! Lets get to the fun stuff! Week 30 is here and that means only 10 more weeks to go give or take, until we meet little Declan!! According to my pregnancy app little man is the size of a cabbage and weighs approximately 2.75 lbs He has been getting the hiccups more often now and his kicks are stronger and stronger. So far I have gained about 18 lbs and haven’t experienced any other symptoms that I haven’t mentioned before. I got the results back for my Glucose screening and my doctor will be explaining them to me at our next appointment. From what I could tell it was in the normal range though.

We have begun to track baby’s kicks once a day usually at night before bed. So far it hasn’t taken more then 5-6 minutes to get 10 kicks/movements out of him! In the tracker we got from the doctor it says to be concerned if you don’t feel 10 kicks or movements withing 2 hours so I think we are good there! Our next appointment is scheduled for the 11th of this month, we are now seeing doctor every two weeks!

Thanks for staying up to date and reading along! I really appreciate my readers and please go ahead and leave me a comment if you’re pregnant and let me know how its going for you, or just reminisce on your pregnancy! I would love reading about it!

*Closed* November Facebook Contest: Thanksgiving Recipe!

Our Facebook group Mommy Meals, Snacks, Crafts, and Activities! is hosting a thanksgiving recipe contest this November! This contest will run for 1 week and it starts on November 7th. If you are interested in participating please join our Facebook group and post your recipe and a photo of that meal together on the timeline of the event that is pinned to the top of the group.

Voting starts on November 7th. You have until then to add your entry! This contest is thanksgiving themed so please stick to thanksgiving recipes! Side dishes, desserts, etc. are fine as long as it is thanksgiving themed and only one entry per person! First place will receive a prize that is determined by the poll posted in our group. I will announce the results of the poll on November 7th. There may be a second prize winner as well. I will add the winning recipe to the top of the group for the rest of the month and all recipes will go in an album in our group! The winning recipe will also be featured on the welcome page of this website!

*Other Terms and Rules*
You must vote on one other entry if you are entering. You CANNOT vote on more then 1 entry. Last time everyone voted for everyone’s photos a lot during our cover photo contest, and while that is really nice and we have a great group of supportive women in our group – it is not fair for the sake of the contest. We encourage anyone voting to test out recipes, I know that since this is an online contest that won’t be realistic for most so try to stick to 1 vote per person please!! Good luck ladies! Let’s share our thanksgiving secrets with each other, learn some new recipes, and have fun!

****CLOSED CONTEST****

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THE WINNER OF NOVEMBERS THANKSGIVING RECIPE CONTEST: Shandra Alexis

“This is my favorite thanksgiving dessert I wait all year for it.”

🍁Pumpkin roll🍁http://www.skiptomylou.org/pumpkin-roll-recipe/amp/

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our winner will be receiving a $25 Amazon Gift Card on December 1st!