Thursday, December 24, 2020

Christmas Present Wrap Off!

I love Christmas time but I am not a fan of wrapping presents. With everything going on this year, it will be just us. We are super excited to have a chill at home Christmas but that means that all our relatives are mailing us gifts. While that may be great, we now have even more gifts to wrap. 

We decided to have some fun with all the wrapping and make it into a challenge to see who is the better wrapper.

Check out the video below and cast your vote for who you think wrapped it best! (If you want to see more videos like this in the New Year, please subscribe to my YouTube page so you don't miss out!)

Who is the better wrapper in your family?

Thursday, October 22, 2020

Moms and Babes Unboxing Fall 2020

I love subscription boxes and one of my favorites is the Moms and Babes box - I get stuff for me and for my baby/kids!

For a limited time, use the promo code "sharethelove" and get 25% off your first box!

There used to be 3 box choices: moms, moms/toddlers, and moms/infants. They combined the three boxes into one. Now you get stuff for you, your baby, and toddler.

This box had so many great products for both mom and babe. I have a
 20 month old and a 1 1/2 month old. There were products in there for both of them!

The box is $59 one off or $53.10 per box when you sign up for a subscription. You can change your subscription at anytime. Bonus: you can get $10 off your first box when you subscribe to the Moms and Babes email list.

Below you can see a video of the unboxing.

Thursday, October 8, 2020

Milk Boosting Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Bites + No pumping secret (read till the end)

Do you need to boost that milk supply? Or maybe just want something yummy to snack on that has an added benefit, like me. I have searched the internet for yummy milk boosting snacks. Many of the cookie dough bites I found were super healthy or had weird ingredients in them (other than the few, special milk boosting ingredients). While there is nothing wrong with healthy ingredients and I am all about eating healthy, I just wanted a good old taste good cookie dough bite. 

These are perfectly safe for those not trying to boost milk but if you need a regular cookie dough recipe, that can be found here: Edible Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough.

For delicious milk boosting cookies:

So you stayed with me to the end and here is my secret. One word - HAAKAA. I have no problem with my milk supply but I like to collect it to freeze for bottle use later. I am only a month postpartum and have already collected over 300 oz of milk WITHOUT PUMPING! Keep in mind I only started these milk boosting cookie dough bites a few days ago so this is without that added benefit. 

I have been using a Haakaa. I got mine on Amazon. It is the best thing ever and something all breastfeeding mommas need. It is simply a suction cup hand pump that catches all that dripping milk. Think about how much milk is wasted while you feed on one side. Why not save it and freeze for later!

What are your favorite milk boosting recipes or products?

Thursday, August 27, 2020

Postpartum Padsicles

With my second pregnancy almost over and my little boy almost here, I figured it was time to share the most amazing postpartum secret. I used these after my first pregnancy and they were amazing. Let's be real ladies, postpartum can be painful and not fun. We all need a little soothing down there and that is where these padsicles come in.

The padsicles have aloe vera, lavender, witch hazel all on a pad. It may seem weird but it definitely has a soothing and numbing effect. They are super easy to make. Check it out!

Steps to make the padsicles:

1. Open up pad.

2. Spread aloe vera along the whole pad.

3. Add ½ tablespoon of witch hazel to the length of the pad.

4. Add several drops of lavender oil to the length of the pad.

5. Spread out all ingredients across the pad. This is an optional step. I didn't do it the first time around and they still worked great.

6. Fold up the pad. I folded one end and then added the sticky cover so I could fold over the other side without the goop getting all over the stickiness. Next fold in the sides.

7. Fold up the wrapper and add to a ziploc bag. Put the ziploc in the freezer so they get cold. Pull one out when you need it.

These padsicles certainly made my postpartum life better and I hope they do the same for you! Do you have any postpartum tips or things you have used?

Thursday, August 20, 2020

Construction Themed 1st birthday!

In honor of Wyatt being 18 months, I figured it was past due posting his 1st birthday! He has grown so much since then and is doing a ton! 

When he turned 1, he was no longer my little baby but rather an almost walking toddler. He never stopped moving or making noise. 

For his birthday, we had a construction themed birthday. We were planning for about 25-30 people. I wanted everything to follow the theme as you can see in the photos below. I had lots of fun thinking of which foods could be what.

We were grateful for a gorgeous sunny day. We had volleyball, horseshoes and a grass field for the kids to run around in. Wyatt sure had fun in his Batmobile and pushing his walker!

The main event was the smash cake. I made it from scratch because I wanted a low sugar option. The recipe can be found here. It is actually a dog cake but I just left out the milk bones. I really wanted a peanut butter cake since he loves peanut butter. 
Check out the video of him eating his smash cake!

We also made cupcakes for everyone else to eat ("snacks for the crew") and put them in the shape of a “1”.

We had a mix of kids and adults so I wanted to have all different snacks. 
Chocolate donuts - "spare tires"
Cheese balls - "wrecking balls"
Chex mix - "nuts and bolts"
Veggie straws - 2 x 4s
Pretzel sticks - "nails"
Red vines - "cables"
Reeses Pieces - "pebbles"
Whoppers - "boulders"

For the main course, we decided on bratwursts and tri tip steak with corn on the cob and macaroni salad. We also had peppers and onions, mustard, ketchup, and Dijon mustard to put on the brats.
Macaroni salad - "cement"
Dijon mustard - "gold paint"
Mustard - "yellow paint"
Ketchup - "red paint"
Peppers and Onions - "debris"
Brats - "build a brat beam"

The tri tip and corn went so fast but I still managed to get a picture.
Corn - "logs"
Tri trip steak - "rough cut lumber" 

As a memento, I had everyone sign a hard hat.

When everyone left they took a favor or as I called it their days wages. 

What did you do for your son or daughters 1st birthday?

Thursday, August 6, 2020

What's in my diaper bag for a toddler?

Oh diaper bags! Do we really need that extra blanket or outfit? How many snacks should we have? There are so many things we ask ourselves every time we leave the house. I currently have a year and a half year old and another on the way. I decided to show off what is in my diaper bag for one toddler. I will later do another one with a newborn and toddler. 

Check out my video "What's in my diaper bag?"

I have this Diaper Bag and I love it! It has so many pockets and organization places. To add to my organization obsession, I purchased these Mother load bagsThey keep me from not digging through trying to find chapstick or toy at the bottom of my bag.

Here are the items I have in my diaper bag (listed by the pockets/bags):
Food bag:
  • Diapers
  • Wipes
  • Clothes
  • Aquaphor
  • Ziploc bag
Extras bag:
  • Tissues
  • Hand lotion
  • Sunscreen
  • Baby sunglasses
  • Bandaids and neosporin
Clothes bag:
  • Extra outfit
  • Extra shirt for mom
  • More ziploc bags

Do you have something different in your diaper bag?

Thursday, July 30, 2020

Sleep Training a Toddler

Sleep training is hard! I want to start with that and let all the moms know that it isn't easy but you will get through it. You are not a horrible mother, despite what you might feel. Believe me, I hated letting my little boy cry and bang on the door but now he is sleeping great.

Our journey was a little different. Wyatt was always a great sleeper. He was sleeping through the night at 2 months old. Around 4-5 months, I got a new job teaching English to Chinese kids. That meant early hours, especially being on the West Coast. I would work from 4am - 6am, sometimes earlier. We were living in a trailer at that time and Wyatt was in his bassinet in our bedroom. At 6 months, we moved him into his crib which happened to be in the same room as where I taught. You can check out our travel trailer remodel here.

When we moved him into the crib, we needed to change something if I wanted to keep teaching. At first, I would get up a little before my first class and move him to our bed. Sometimes it would take him 10 minutes to fall back asleep and other times it took longer. After a while, it got hard with my husband having to leave around 5am for work. 

One night, he uttered the famous last words - "Why don't we just let him sleep in the bed with us." As you can guess, one night turned into a week which turned into a month and then 6 months. 

At the 5 month (of sleeping with us) point, we were moving and buying a house where he would finally have his own room. We moved in around month 6 (of sleeping with us) and he went into his own bed. We tried the crib at first but he wouldn’t have it. He felt like he was in jail after being in our bed with all the pillows and blankets. We had an extra mattress (which he loves now, especially all the pillows) and the sleep training began. Don't judge me for giving my son pillows at 16 months because he got very used to them when he slept with us. 

I did a ton of research as to how I wanted to approach it. I took different ideas and created my own form. First, we would do our bedtime routine - bath time, brush teeth, book time and bedtime. I’d lay in there for a few minutes with him and then leave. Of course, he would start crying, get up, and bang on the door. I waited 5 minutes before entering his room again. I’d stay in there for a few minutes again to calm him down and leave once again. This time, I waited 10 minutes and continued this pattern, adding 5 minutes each time. The first night was the worst, going all the way up to 25 minutes. 

You can see our progression below:

Day 1: Fell asleep after 25 min timer (75 minutes total of crying)

Day 2: Fell asleep after 10 min timer (15 minutes total of crying)

Day 3: Fell asleep after 15 min timer (30 minutes total of crying)

Day 4: Fell asleep after 15 min timer (30 minutes total of crying)

Day 5: Cried for 1-2 minutes and fell asleep before 5 min timer went off

Day 6: Fell asleep in the cuddle time between 15 and 20 min timer

Day 7: Fell asleep a minute into 25 minute timer 

Day 8: Fell asleep in cuddle between 15 and 20 minute timer 

Day 9: Fell asleep about 2 minutes into the 10 minute timer

Day 10: Fell asleep 30 seconds into 10 minute timer

Day 11: Fell asleep a minute into 5 minute timer 

Day 12: Fell asleep 30 seconds into 10 min timer 

Day 13: Fell asleep a minute into 5 minute timer

Day 14: No crying, fell asleep a few minutes after I left.

This is a video of a calm night. Most nights were more of a screaming cry.

Now he is going to sleep on his own and sleeping through the entire night. It is nice to be able to have some time to myself after he is in bed and hang with my husband. That first week was so hard but we got through it and I wouldn’t change it. You can do it! If you need encouragement, feel free to reach out. I am no sleep expert but I am a mom that has been there!