Thursday, July 11, 2013

Best things about being a mom

Blame the pregnancy hormones if you want, but I've been getting teary-eyed when I think of some of the best parts of being a mom.  Yes I actually will sit in the rocking chair and actually cry tears of joy when I think about how happy my wonderful son makes me.  Here's a list of the things that I love most.
  1. Waking up to hear W yelling "Maaaa!  Maaaa!  Mum Mum Mum Mum!" I'm sure in twenty years the "Maaaa!" will be followed by "The meatloaf?!" (yes that is a Wedding Crashers reference)
  2. This may sound cruel, but when I drop W off at daycare and he still wants me, not to go play with his friends (this doesn't happen often anymore, but it's good to know they miss you).
  3. One of the coolest things to watch is when my little man discovers something new.  The wonder and sense of accomplishment in his eyes makes me so happy and proud of him.
  4. W has taught me to slow down and enjoy things.  When I think back on my childhood, I think of all the fun things my mom did with us.  Before W, I quit enjoying things like carving pumpkins or dying Easter eggs.  Doing these things again with him makes me remember my childhood as well as build lasting memories for him.
  5. My son's smile will brighten up my day any day of the week.  I know it sounds cheesy, but when my little guy smiles (and laughs) it makes my day so much better no matter how rough it may have been.  It is the best sight and sound EVER.
  6. Random cuddles have to be one of the best parts about being W's mom.  I love when he randomly climbs up on my lap and just snuggles.  As much as he loves running around and getting into things slowing down with snuggles is one of my favorite perks of being a mom.
  7. I LOVE bath time.  For us bath time is just an extension of play time.  W now thinks he can actually swim in the tub. He blows bubbles and kicks his feet and everything!  He also goes nuts when I turn the shower on.  I love watching him have fun and splash around.
  8. Sneaking into my little man's room when he is peaceful and asleep to make sure he is all covered up and comfortable. This absolutely melts my heart.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Plus Size Pregnancy Clothing (and I don't mean XL Clothing)

I've got a bone to pick with retailers that claim to have Plus Size Maternity clothing.  I HATE when a retailer *cough* Target *cough* Old Navy* claims to carry plus size maternity wear when they only go up to XXL.  Hello?!  Bigger women have babies than a size 18-20!  I swear there are only a handful of places online that offer real plus size maternity clothing and I hate to say it, the clothing isn't all that attractive.

I know I'm a big girl and things aren't going to fit me the same way as they fit a pregnant woman who usually wears a size 12, but come on people.  I want to look good too and not like a tent! Oh and it would be nice to find a few nice business appropriate outfits I could wear too!

To help all the curvalicious pregnant ladies out there I want offer my suggestions on where to shop for plus size maternity wear. 

1.  Motherhood Maternity
Lets start with Motherhood Maternity.   While they do not have the best selection / variety (some of the tops I swear I bought with my first pregnancy nearly two years ago), they do offer a wide variety of casual clothing and business casual attire.  Some of their prints are hideous and they only have a handful of dresses (mostly in blacks and greys).  Motherhood is usually one of my first stops for maternity clothing.

2.  JcPenny
Again, like Motherhood Maternity, JcPenny focuses on casual and business casual clothing, but I tend to like their styles more than Motherhood, plus the prices are WAY better.  JcPenny's plus size maternity clothing actually goes on sale and you can easily get multiple outfits for under $100.

3.  Simply Be
I would say Simply Be has the most stylish of all the sites I've visited as far as maternity clothing goes.  However, some of the clothing borders on things a teen mom would wear.  They have the best selection of dresses out of all the sites I've listed so far.  However, even with a coupon you will still be spending over $30 for a tee shirt (a tee shirt you will only wear for about 5-6 months).  It is a bit pricier than the other retailers I have listed.

4.  Jessica London
I've bought a few things from Jessica London.  While it is not super cheap, you can find business suits there.  I'm not sure if she will continue her pregnancy line as I haven't seen new items added and a lot of them seem to be on sale right now.  Also there isn't a huge variety of clothing, but like I said, if you need a business suit this is probably one of your only options.  The other nice thing is she goes all the way up to a size 32!  If you wear Lane Bryant clothing her sizes (pants wise) run pretty similar.

5.  One Stop Plus
Not a great variety (and linked with Jessica London), but if you visit One Stop Plus and type "maternity" into the search bar you will be given a handful of maternity tops and bottoms.

6.  Kohl's
My first pregnancy Kohl's did not offer ANY plus size maternity clothing, so you can imagine my surprise when I discovered that they are now.  However, many of the outfits they offer are from Motherhood and they only have 23 pieces total.  The prices are also pretty high, but I would imagine if you hit a good sale and could earn Kohl's Cash it may be worth it.  Personally, I would think that they would have a better variety of clothing to keep up with JcPenny, but what do I know?

It really frustrates me that there is not a bigger variety of plus size maternity clothing.  I mean what are us bigger girls suppose to do? Not get pregnant?  Wear mumus for 9 months??  The only other advice I have for curvy mommas to be would be to not avoid the stores where you usually shop.  Sometimes you can find a cute dress or shirt that can double as maternity wear.  

If I overlooked any retailers that offer maternity clothing bigger than XXL please leave it in the comments section of this post.  Thanks!

Friday, June 28, 2013

There is a 12lb Breakdancer in my Womb

I went to see my doctor last week and after looking at my most recent u/s she said to me, "I hope you are ready for a 12lb baby!".   Ummm... WTF did she just say?  Did she say 12lbs?  I told her that I hoped she would induce me before this baby hits 12lbs (hopefully between 38-39 weeks).  To which she replied that I handled W's birth fine and he was 10lbs (yes I give birth to thoroughbreds).  Yeah, my doctor is not the one squeezing a 12lb baby out of her vagina.  My lady bits may never be the same again!   Not only that, but I'm pretty sure giving birth to a 10lb baby is A LOT different than a 12lb baby.

Not only does it look like I will be giving birth to a teenager, but this kid is already nuts.  I've had 4 ultrasounds at this point and on EVERY SINGLE ONE this kid is going nuts moving around.  He actually mooned the tech and shook his little booty on the last ultrasound.  My doctor made mention of how much trouble I will be in once this one arrives if the ultrasounds are any indication.  Lord help me!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

We are pregnant!

I know it has been awhile since I posted, but it is for good reason.  We are pregnant!  Even more exciting news is that W is going to have a baby brother this fall!

It is crazy how quickly this pregnancy is flying by.  It is probably because W keeps me so busy these days.  I swear W goes non-stop and he was not like that when we got pregnant which has me wondering what the f#@! did I get myself into?! How will I handle two babies and remain sane?

Friday, March 22, 2013

Busy Week

This has been such a busy week.  I feel bad that this is my first and perhaps only post for the week and it is going to be so short.  The daycare transition went really well this week.  W no longer cries when I drop him off and is content when he is picked up.  He always brings a toy over to the gate to play with and to take home.  It is such a huge weight off my shoulders that he is happy where he is.  The other thing I LOVE is the teacher who is with him in the afternoons is ALWAYS on the floor playing with the kids and singing.  It's so cute.  I can hear her before I even open the door to the daycare wing!

This weekend W and I are leaving my hubby at home and going to visit family for the weekend, then I have to work on Sunday so we will not be back until Monday.  Have a great weekend everyone!

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Daycare - Day 2 - The Snack Dilema

Today is W's second day in daycare.  Yesterday he did excellent until I went to play with him at lunch time.  Then he freaked out.  Then last night he woke up at 3am and was inconsolable until I moved him into bed with me.  I'm sure it didn't help that we had no 'together' time since I didn't see him until 7:30 when I picked him up from my friend's house. Then as soon as we got home it was bedtime.

When I dropped W off today he FREAKED out.  He was screaming and had these big tears in his eyes. I felt awful.  I wanted to run over and pick him up and hug him, but I knew that would just be delaying the inevitable. 

One of the things I'm finding tough with our daycare is that the snacks they provide.  They are prepackaged  processed crap like cheeseballs.  ICK!  Another issues we have is W eats breakfast at about 7:45am and snack time is between 8:30 and 8:45am so I need to pack something that is not too heavy but will help hold him over until lunch at 11:30.  His afternoon snack is between 3 and 3:30 so I need to pack something heavier or else he is ravenous when I pick him up. Here's a list of the foods I have come up  with:

Morning Snacks:
Green / Red Peppers
Cherry Tomatoes

Afternoon Snacks (I choose two of the following)
String Cheese
Organic Animal Cookies
Homemade Oatmeal Cookies
Wholewheat Goldfish
Chick Peas
Dried Fruit

And because every post is better with a picture, here are a few pictures what he takes to daycare:
AM Snack

Mesquite Steak
Cheesy Quinoa Broccoli Bite
Red Peppers

PM Snack
String Cheese

Just to make it easy on everyone I labeled everything with a dry erase marker.

Monday, March 11, 2013


For the last year we have been blessed to have a friend who has watched W in her home.  It was the best situation we could ask for.  I felt so comfortable leaving him there and she even worked around my crazy and long work schedule.

Last month she had a job offer and decided to take it and we enrolled him in daycare a few blocks from my office. They didn't have any immediate openings so a friend of my friend (a former preschool teacher) offered to watch W until we could transition him (see my last blog entry for all the details).  Long story short today was W's first day at the new daycare.  It broke my heart to leave him somewhere new and unfamiliar all alone.  I wanted to scoop him  up and take him with me.  When I left he was perfectly fine, but looked at me with these big puppy dog eyes as if he were to say "Wait mom!  Where are you going? You forgot me!", but he didn't cry. 

At lunch time I went over to visit him, snuggle, and play.  We had a good 20 minutes of playtime before I had to go back to work.  This time when I left him he started screaming.  He totally broke my heart.  My poor little guy.  I know all this is for the best and it is good that he is being socialized, but it still hurts to know that if he falls and gets a boo-boo I won't be there to kiss it better.  I hate knowing that they probably won't pick up on his baby signing that I taught him.  They will not know that when he pats his belly he is really saying "Please" and when he says "der" it means he doesn't know the name for something, but wants it.

I think the worst part is I work until 7:30 on Monday and Tuesday and Wednesday I have to be at work by 7:30am and I have an appointment right after work so his former nanny will be picking him up those days.  I'm going to feel totally disconnected from my little guy those days.

Deep breathes!

Monday, March 4, 2013

True Working Mom Struggles

What do you do when your babysitter does not show up and you HAVE to be at work?  It is a question no working mom wants to face.  On Friday I had to deal with just that.  W's nanny got a new job and she started last Monday.  Our plan was for her friend to watch W at her house (she has a playroom all setup for him).  She started Monday and all was going well until Friday when she didn't show up.  She didn't call, didn't text and she wasn't answering her phone either.

I ended up taking W with me to work for a few hours.  He had to come to a meeting with me (where I chased him around the office).  Then we hopped in my car to go to my office when I scraped my door when I cut a turn too sharp coming out of the parking garage.  At that point I just lost it and started bawling in my car.  I called my mom crying.  I couldn't take much more.  We arrived at my office and he was SO well behaved.  I ended up working a half day before I took him in for a doctor's appointment.

This week, my mom, who lives three hours away, drove out to watch W all week and help us save in daycare costs and next week he will start at a daycare.  I'm really not looking forward to sending him.  His original nanny was so great with him and overall awesome.  We were so blessed to have her watch him for more than the first year of his life.  I know having him in daycare will only help him to be better socialized, but we are going to miss her!

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Top 5 Disney World Tips from Kendra Thornton

Hello everyone! Last week I was contacted by Kendra Thornton (former director of communications for Orbitz, travel expert and mother of three). You may recognize Kendra from one of her many tv appearances on Fox News, ABC, CBS, NBC, or the CW. Kendra has traveled the world and has been the go to source for all things travel. Without further ado, here is Kendra's Post!

Top Five Disney World Tips 
“Ways for Mommies to Maneuver the Parks with Breeze this Spring Break”

While a trip to Walt Disney World Resort will certainly be a highlight of your young child’s life, preparation is key to helping parents enjoy the experience as well. Use some of these insider’s hints to make the most of your Disney World vacation:

 1. Breakfast with a favorite Disney character will delight your children. Arrange to have Cinderella or one of her princess friends greet your child while dining at the Royal Table restaurant in Fantasyland at the Magic Kingdom. To ensure this surprise, book advance reservations here or at one of many restaurants in the resort that offer character dining.

 2. Take a ride on the monorail. Bus trips are long and boring, but the swift monorail transports Disney guests straight into the park. If the kids get tired and cranky after a fun-filled morning in the park, the monorail can help you get them back to the hotel and down for a nap quickly. Since the monorail operates all day long, you can easily hop back on and return to the park after the kids have rested for a couple hours.

 3. Enjoy a ferry ride between the Magic Kingdom and Epcot Center. The trip is more relaxing and interesting than a bus ride, and the ferry will transport you straight into either park so that you can avoid lines and congestion upon entry.

4. Don’t forget the stroller. If you can’t bring your own, Disney has them available for rent, along with toddler-friendly amenities to make your visit as pleasant as possible. Air conditioned baby care centers in each of the Disney parks offer rocking chairs for calming upset little ones, a place to get out of the heat if your child needs it and basic necessities such as diapers for unforeseen emergencies.

5. Plan ahead. Before you arrive at the Walt Disney World Resort, amongst some of the top hotels in Orlando, do a little pre-planning and schedule each day for maximum enjoyment and minimum exhaustion. Convenient apps that give approximate wait times for each attraction are available to download on your smart phone.

 Keep in Mind! A FASTPASS can be purchased to allow you and your family to bypass long lines. Do your research beginning several weeks prior to your trip, and let the kids participate in order to build anticipation as they prepare for the most exciting time of their lives.
~Kendra Thornton

Thank you again Kendra for guest blogging today.  All your Disney tips are super helpful and if my readers are anything like me, they are already looking to book their flights and hotels for a family vacation!

Resources:  Kendra Thornton
Image courtesy of:  Kendra Thornton

Friday, February 22, 2013

Mommy Wars

Earlier this week a reader directed me to an article posted on the National Nannies blog. The article, A Mom’s Guide to Balancing Work and Family, was a very good reference for those mothers who have already gone back to work or are getting ready to do so. In reading the article, it reminded me of some of the things I need to work on. One of the things I really need to focus on is carving out some 'me' time. I really hate dropping W off at his Nanny's house when I have a day off, but sometimes it needs done. I took this past Monday off from work and dropped him off. While he was there I was able to check so many things off my to-do list. My biggest achievement was scrubbing down the kitchen. I'm talking about a move the refrigerator and stove and clean behind them type of clean that takes a few hours. It felt so good to get that deep cleaning in both my kitchen and first floor bathroom. I'm already contemplating taking another day off in the near future to do the same to my living room, bedroom and upstairs bathrooms. I also need to work on the mommy guilt. Some days I feel so guilty dropping him off, but I really need to remind myself why I do it. I do it so he can have a roof over his head and all the financial security we need when it comes to raising a child. I've mentioned it before, but I really think the guilt is at its worst during the work week when our quality time together is at an all time low. I highly recommend other working parents take a look at it. I want to thank Carol Watson for sending me the link. Have a great weekend everyone! Click To Vote For Us @ Top Mommy Blogs. A Ranked & Rated Directory Of The Most Poular Mom Blogs

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Operation MILF: Slim Thighs in 7 Days

You know those bazillion of work-out ideas you pin on Pinterest and never look at again? I started pinning to my 'Operation MILF' board when I was pregnant with my son almost two years ago, but I don't think I ever actually read or put one of those pins into action. I finally started going through my MILF board and today I tried one of my pins when I went to the gym at lunch. This pin was Slimmer Thighs in 7 Days. After three of the exercises I felt the burn! I was not coordinated for two of the exercises, but I tried my best (and looked like an idiot). If you decide to try these moves beware of the Crescent Kicks and Slim Skater (you will look like a fool). My goal is to try this workout for two weeks and then see if I actually see results. One pin on my MILF board down, 57 to go (until I see something else I just have to pin to that board).

Click To Vote For Us @ Top Mommy Blogs. A Ranked & Rated Directory Of The Most Poular Mom Blogs

Monday, February 11, 2013

Quickest meal yet!

It will haven taken me longer to write this blog than it did to make dinner yesterday. This is perhaps the easiest quickest meal I've made yet. Yesterday morning I pulled out my mini slow cooker and found some meatballs in the freezer. I took the meatballs and added them to the slow cooker with some pasta sauce then I let it cook on low all day. It does not get much easier than that. PLUS that gives me at least two different meal options. My husband opted for a meatball sub and W had meatballs and pasta. Here's what my little guys dinner looked like last night.
Meatballs, wholewheat pasta, cucumber, tomato and some homemade apple sauce (also made in the slow cooker on Saturday). YUM!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Sunny Sunday

I am so sick of all this snow and cold weather.  I REALLY need a few nice warm days and sunshine.  Preferably on a beach while W plays in the sand.  I know that is not happening anytime soon so to get myself out of this winter funk I'm going to start posting Sunny Sundays and each Sunday share some beautiful sunny place I would love to be at this very moment.

If any other bloggers are interested in joining me on Sunny Sunday please leave a link to your blog below and I will add you to the post.

This Sunday I propose a visit to the French Countryside.

 How Sound of Music-esque would feel to run through that beautiful field of flowers?  Seeing that picture I would love to pack a picnic and bottle of wine and cloud watch all day.  This may sound silly, but I can feel my shoulders relax just thinking about it.

Have a great rest of the weekend everyone!

Friday, February 8, 2013

Friday Night Dinner - Made!

I am a HUGE fan of the slow cooker.  Anytime have the time and ingredients available before work I try to throw something in the slow cooker so dinner is ready be the time I get home.  This morning was one of those lucky mornings.  I had 15 minutes while W was eating breakfast to put something together in cock pot.  Here's what I had:

Two Boneless Pork Chops
Red Potatoes
Frozen Veggies (peas, green beans, carrots, corn, broccoli, cauliflower and squash)

Easy enough.  I put all those into the slow cooker, but now what do I season it with?  I always keep packets of onion soup mix on hand, but I just wasn't feeling onion soup flavor today.  When I reached way back in my spice cabinet what did I find?

 Some spices for the grille.  It smelled really good so I hope my meal turns out yummy!  Dinner is one thing I can cross of my list tonight.


Thursday, February 7, 2013


Let me preface this all by saying before I had my son I had no problem making a quick run into a store and it really didn't bother me to get out of my car to run errands, but now with a baby I really think everyone should have a drive-thru.  I would probably be contributing a lot more to our economy if I didn't have to get out of my car to shop. 

Since having W, my shopping trips are at least 15-25 minutes longer.  It takes forever to get him in and out of the car.  Each and every time we get out of the car I have to put his shoes and socks back on him then I have to put his jacket on him.  Then when we get back into the car and I am struggling with my bags, my purse and a toddler who will wiggle, plank and twist in order to try and get out of being strapped in.  I swear I break a sweat putting him in his seat.  If you add rain or snow into the equation and this already hectic pit stop has turned into pure hell!

Once we make it into the store I always feel like I am in a rush to get what I need and get out.  I think it is worst during the work week because we are already so limited on the time we have together after work.  We typically arrive home between 5:45 and 6pm, but add in a quick trip to Walgreen's and we are not home until 6:30 at the earliest.

Needless to say I have developed a great appreciation for the drive-thru and it is not because I am lazy.  I really believe more places should have drive-thrus.  I LOVE that I can go to Starbucks and get my skinny mocha without leaving my car.  We have a grocery store that offers Vallet Grocery Shopping for a $5 fee which I totally think is worth it.  I've used it a few times and I can place my order online, drive right up to the store and then pay for my order while they load it into my car.  GENIUS! 

Now if there were only a way to get more restaurants, drug stores and stores like Target and TJ Maxx to catch on life would be perfect! How nice would it be to be able to go through a drive-thru to quickly pick up milk and deodorant rather than hulling your kid(s) out of the car? I know it's not really practical, but a girl can dream can't she?

Monday, February 4, 2013

Liebster Award!

I am thrilled to announce that Whispers from a Working Mom has received Liebster Award!  Thank you to both Seriously Kate and For the Love of Kids for bestowing this honor on my blog.

The Liebster Award is given to new upcoming bloggers who have fewer than 200 followers and passed along to other bloggers who meet the same criteria.

Here are the rules for the Liebster Award:

1. Each blogger should post 11 random facts about themselves.
2. Answer the questions the tagger has set for you, then create 11 new questions for the bloggers you pass the award to.
3. Choose 11 new bloggers (with less than 200 followers) to pass the award to and link them in your post.
4. Go to their page and tell them about the award.
5. No tag backs.

Now lets get started. 

Eleven Random Facts: 
  1. I LOVE Cheese on just about everything.  For me a meal isn't complete without cheese.
  2. I know I need to wear Spanx and I do, but I wait until the last possible minute to put them on.  For example, I will sit in my office all day and about 5 minutes before I leave for a meeting or event I will put my Spanx on then take them off immediately after my meeting is over.
  3. I have a box of shoes under my desk.  It's not just a small box either.  I'd say there are about 15 pair of shoes in there.  I'm terrified to take them home because I know my husband will just get on my case about donating some of my shoes, but I seriously cannot part with them.
  4. Ever since I had my son I cannot stand eating meat or to touch raw meat.  It makes me sick to my stomach.
  5. Our dog was born on the night my husband and I got engaged.  That was probably the ONLY reason he agreed to getting a dog.
  6. I love trashy reality TV and I really miss watching Rock of Love on VH1.
  7. I love listening to books on tape on long car rides.  I have been known to ignore phone calls in the middle of a car ride just so I can keep listening to my book.
  8. I have not stayed up until midnight on New Years Eve in years.  Probably not since my husband and I dated.  (I know I'm a party pooper)
  9. I prefer getting a french manicure on my toes to color.  I feel like the french lasts longer and you cannot tell when it is chipped.
  10. I really want a minivan.  I just bought a new car last year and I keep trying to convince my husband (his car is only going to last another year if we are lucky) to get a minivan, but he's soooo not into it.
  11. I really like trying new makeup products.  I have been known to go a little overboard while shopping at Sephora / Ulta on makeup products that I only use a couple of times because I like the packaging.

Eleven Questions from Kate

1. What inspired you to begin blogging?
While I was on the road one day I felt like I had a story to tell to other working moms out there and so I thought the best way to do so would be through a blog.

2. If you had to watch the same movie over and over for a day, which would it be?
Lady and the Tramp

3. Do you prefer living in the city, the country, or somewhere in between?
I lived in the city in college and at this point I really like the suburbs. 

4. If you could choose any profession, meaning you'd have the skillset required and money was not a deciding factor, what would you do?
I love the job I have right now, but I could also see myself teaching.

5. How is your driving? Are you aggressive behind the wheel or are you patient and generous? Have you gotten any speeding tickets???
Knock on wood, I'd say I'm a decent driver.  I try not to be too aggressive, but catch me when I'm PMS'ing and that's a different story.  I was pulled over twice for speeding, but let go with a minor fine (disobeying a traffic sign).

6. What life lesson do you find yourself having to learn over and over again?
I need to quit rushing things and wait for them to happen.  Looking back I wish my teens / early twenties had gone slower.

7. Do you prefer Coke or Pepsi?

8. Do you have a favorite Bible verse? If so, what is it?
Matthew 7:12 Do unto others as you would have them do unto you

9. Which do you prefer - physical books or e-books?
If you would have asked me this a year ago I would have told you physical books, but now e-books.  I love that I can read at night and not wake anyone up with too much light.

10. What one thing do you absolutely not leave home without?
My son, purse, chap stick and a hairband.

11. What one thing scares you the most?
Losing someone I love.

Since I was nominated twice, here are Eleven Questions from For the Love of Kids
1. How do you define yourself as a person?
Loving, caring and get down to business attitude
2. Why do you blog?

See question 1 from Kate
3. What is your greatest pet peeve?

Cracking knuckles, neck ect..
4. What do you treasure most in your life?

My son
5. What is your short term and long term goal?

To be a loving mother, wife and eventually grandmother
6. Who is your role model?

My dad
7. What is your favorite movie of all times and why?

Probably Lady and the Tramp
8. With which color in the rainbow, you identify yourself with and why?

 Green.  I think green is often an overlooked color, but it is also full of life and vibrance.
9. Do you like to socialize a lot and be in a wider world or are you comfortable with few friends/ no friends and a small world?

I enjoy my few friends and smaller circle.  Sometimes I feel larger circles can cause a lot of idol gossip and drama.
10. What is your religion?

11. Define 'Love' 

Wow, that's a toughie.  I would say love is the feeling of unconditional affection to someone or something.  The feeling you cannot survive without it and something you hold so near and dear to your heart being without it would break your spirit.

NOW here are the blogs I nominate:

Mrs. Mama 
Baby Teems
Ruby Tiara Diaries
Tiny Feet Big Heart
Happy Kids Inc
Navigate this Life of Mine
Fear No More ... A Day in the Life Of...
Simply at Home Mom
Wonderful Creations
 Sand in my Toes
The Nardiello Family

And the questions:
  1. How long have you been blogging?
  2. What is your favorite shampoo?
  3. Name a song that reminds you of high school?
  4. Where do you see yourself in 5 years? 10 years?
  5. What accomplishment are you most proud of?
  6. How do you relax?
  7. If you had an extra hour in the day what would you do?
  8. What is your all time favorite Christmas gift?
  9. If price weren't an option, what would your dream car be?
  10. What is your favorite book?
  11. When was the last time you did a shot of alcohol?  With who?

Friday, February 1, 2013

What a week!

WOW.  This has been one heck of a week!  I'm surprised I have time to breathe.  I ended up working 10-12 hours almost every day this week.  Then yesterday my tooth was throbbing so I made a dentist appointment and can you guess how I got to end my week?  If you guessed by a root canal you are correct! 

I went to the dentist this morning in hopes that they would be able to replace a loose filling, but it turns out the tooth was beyond repair.  My dentist took out the nerves in the tooth this morning and cleaned it, but she didn't have time to finish the canal, so I go back on Thursday so she can finish.  The nova-cane wore off about an hour ago and I'm on Tylenol now.  Thankfully that seems to be doing the trick.  It just feels very itchy under the tooth.   I cannot wait to have this all behind me. 

Hopefully I'll have time to write a quick post tomorrow on the yummy ranch pork chops I'm making my son for dinner tonight.  They smelled so good in the slow cooker!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

A quick post

I have a few posts planned out for later this week, but I hate to go so long in between postings.  This week has been super crazy and I do not see it slowing down until Wednesday afternoon.  Yesterday I worked an 11 hour day, today will be a 10 hour day and tomorrow will be another 10 hour day.  I really don't mind the long days (especially if they start early and I can be home in time for dinner with my little guy), but last night was a late night.  We didn't make it home until 7:45 and then it was bath time and bed time for my fellow.  This morning it was so hard leaving him because I felt such a disconnect.  We didn't get any play time yesterday.  I know it could be a lot worse, but I miss my little man.  I may go visit him at lunch to give him hugs.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013


This weekend W and I took a road trip to visit my parents and have pictures done.  I know many parents are intimidated by traveling with a baby / toddler, but I believe the key to a successful road trip is planning and conditioning.  I took W on his first road trip when he was about 3 weeks old by myself.  The road trip that would normally take 3 hours took close to 4 because I had to stop and nurse, but was surprisingly easy since he still slept a lot.  I believe that getting your little one use to long car rides early on makes it easier on you in the long run.

I have learned a few tips to keeping your little one happy while road tripping. 

First and foremost is plan to leave about an hour before nap time.  This way your little will have a little bit of play time in the car before your little one passes out.  They will have just enough time to play before they get bored and cranky. 

The next tip is pack a car bag and keep it next to you that way you aren't turning around every five minutes to search for toys that were thrown or sippy cups that disappeared.  I recommend keeping a variety of dry snacks in the bag (animal crackers, dried fruit, puffs, Edamame).  I also HIGHLY recommend packing at least two sippy cups if you are traveling alone.  The sippy cup will be thrown at least once and you will need to pull over to find it if you do not pack an extra one.  You will also need to put toys in the bag.  I try to put a variety of stuffed toys, books and little cars.  Try to avoid balls or anything that can roll.  The LAST thing you want is for a ball to roll under your seat and get caught under your break pedal.  Here is a picture of some of the snacks I packed for this weekend's road trip.

When it comes time to give your child the contents of the bag try not to give them their favorite toys or snacks first.  I like to save these snacks as a last resort because they will help keep your child happier longer in the last leg of the car ride and prevent you from going nuts.

I know many parents have DVD players in their cars which I'm sure is a huge help for long car rides.  W is not a fan of TV so at this point it is not an option for us.

Another thing I have learned is it is best to break up your road trip if at all possible.  I know W can stand up to four hours in the car (if we travel around nap time).  If I try and push it any longer he will have a complete meltdown.  Now that he walks, it is easy to stop for 10 minutes at the rest stop and let him walk around and stretch his legs and eat a meal and get a fresh diaper.

Finally remember that when you arrive at your destination don't worry about unpacking your car right away.  Grab the essentials and allow your little one to roam around burn off some of the pent up energy from the car ride.  If you are staying at a hotel have your swim suits ready for a quick dip as this will burn off the most energy quickest making it easier for you to get settled in. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Quick Healthy Breakfasts for Toddlers in Under 10 Minutes!

Almost every morning I find myself running out of the house to get W to his nanny and me to work on time.  We typically have about 20 minutes (at most) for breakfast.  That gives me about 5-10 minutes to get breakfast ready for him to eat.  We've been stuck in the same dull breakfast routine for awhile now so I decided to do some research on quick and healthy breakfast ideas.  One of the things I look for are finger foods that aren't too messy so I don't have to worry about changing his clothing after we eat.

Here's the list of things I came up with:
  1. Scrambled Eggs
    • When I'm running a little ahead of schedule I try and give him eggs in the morning.  If I have some left over veggies from the night before I will mix them in with the eggs for some extra vitamins.  I also like to sprinkle some cheese on top because lets me honest, just about EVERYTHING is better with a little cheese!
  2. Baked Oatmeal
    • I know what you are thinking, baked oatmeal in the morning? Yeah right! I agree, I'm not advocating that you make baked oatmeal in the morning, BUT you can make it on Sunday for breakfast and cut it up to enjoy for the week.  I've also wrapped it up in individual portions and put it in the freezer.  The night before you can put it in the refrigerator the night before then microwave it in the morning.  Here's a link to one of the recipes I really like (minus the nuts)
  3. Pancakes
    • I know making pancakes in the morning takes time.  That's why I recommend doing the same thing as the baked oatmeal.  I make my pancakes on Sunday morning and wrap three silver dollar sized pancakes up together and freeze them.  That way they are already portioned out.  In the morning I put them on a microwave safe plate and nuke them for about 30 seconds, flip them over and put them back in for another 20 seconds and voila! Check out my pancake recipe I posted last week. 
  4. Fritters
    • Fritters are for the mornings you have a little bit more time to make breakfast, or make them on weekends and serve them later in the week.  All you need is 1/2 a can of drained corn, an egg, a dash of salt and 1T of flour.  Then you cook them in a non-stick pan.
  5. Muffins
    • No there is no way you can make fresh muffins with only 10-20 minutes, but you can make them on Sundays and serve them throughout the week or even freeze them (can you tell I freeze a lot of what I make?).  W LOVES the pumpkin muffins I make. You can find that recipe here.
  6. Whole Grain Waffles
    • I try and keep these stocked in the freezer.  I buy whole grain organic once from the grocery store and pair it with some fruit in the morning.
  7. Breakfast Roll-ups
    • I can't wait to try these!  All you need to do is spread some cream cheese on a whole grain wrap and sprinkle with some fresh berries.  You can even do Nutella or peanut butter and add bananas.   
I'm excited to try some of the new things I listed above and I hope this post helps out your morning routine.  Please note that I would pair every breakfast item listed above with fruit.  Fruit is super easy and you can cut it up the night before.  I also try to keep some frozen fruit in the freezer so I can thaw it out quickly and give it to my little man.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Baby Pictures on the Internet

You may have noticed that I do not post pictures of my son online and you may be asking yourself why? Am I not proud to show him off?  Is there something wrong with him? Am I ashamed?  The answers to all of those questions is NO.  I love my son and I am proud of him and he is the most beautiful baby toddler boy you will ever meet.  However, as we sat in labor and delivery 14 months ago my husband and I had a talk.  Do we post a picture of him on Facebook as soon as he is born? The answer we both agreed upon was No.

In 2010 Internet security firm AVG conducted a study that estimates that 92% of children under the of 2 have an online presence.  YIKES! Think about that, these kids are plastered all over the internet before they can have a say in what is on the world wide web about them and when things are on the internet and you try to delete it there is no guarantee that it is ever completely gone.

Yes I do realize that I blog about my son.  I do try and limit the types of details I put out there about him.  And yes, I do post a picture here and there, but the pictures I post for public consumption never include his face to try and somewhat lessen his digital footprint my husband and I may have created for him.  Can you imagine kids of this generation going out for a job interview and having 18+ years of pictures they never consented to all over the internet?!  I mean really? That could be THOUSANDS of pictures, status updates and Tweets. Don't we owe it to our children to let them be in charge of what is put out on the internet about them?

I know most people feel completely at ease posting things abut their kids online, but I came across an article on PBS Parents where they outline some guidelines for what you post about your kids online.  Here it is:

5 Tips for Keeping Kids Safe

If you do choose to blog or post photos of your children online, remember to follow these guidelines:
  1. Take advantage of privacy settings. By using the privacy settings offered on Facebook or other social media sites, you decrease the chances that online predators can view photos you post for family and friends, says Vivian Shic, spokesperson for Trend Micro, an Internet security firm.
  2. Protect your child from identity theft. “A thief could piece together what might appear to be random bits of disparate information and use it to impersonate your child—opening bank accounts, taking out loans, even committing crimes—all in the child's name,” says Jacqueline Beauchere, a director with Microsoft’s Trustworthy Computing Group.
  3. Don't give strangers an "in" with your child. Beauchere advises against posting other kinds of information that could put your child at risk. “This includes not only facts … but also photos and feelings,” she says. “An appearance of vulnerability—sadness, loneliness or anger—could invite unwanted contact from strangers.”
  4. Be judicious about the photos you post online. “Consider that cameras made after a certain year tag the photos with an identifier that tells you the location the photo was taken,” notes Shic.
  5. Choose hack-proof passwords. Elizabeth Stanula, spokesperson for Geek Squad Agents, warns not to use personal information like birthdays or children’s names in your passwords. Nor should you use complete words, she says: “One of the most basic hacker tactics is known as a ‘dictionary attack,’ where an automated program will attempt the words of the dictionary.”
The PBS article in its entirety can be found here:

By no means do I think that I will never post a picture of my son on the internet (face and all), but at this point in time I'm fine with not doing so.  People who know my family and I know that if they want to see a picture of our son they can text us or email us and we will gladly send them one.   We do realize that some things we cannot control and that he may 'accidentally' end up online via someone's Facebook pictures or being caught in the background but as of right now people have respected our wishes and kept our son's pictures off of the internet. 

Monday, January 14, 2013

Working Mom Problems

Is it me or do weekends just fly by?  As much as I try to spend as much quality time with W as possible I feel like some weekends I don't get quite enough in.  On Saturday mornings we go to My Gym (which we missed this week), but other than that I feel like we are stuck in the playroom the rest of the weekend and even then I'm working on stuff to get ready for the following week.

Our Sundays usually consist of us waking up, going to brunch then heading to the grocery store.  By the time we get back from the grocery store it's W's nap time.  After he wakes up from his nap it's lunch time and by then it is usually close to 2 o'clock already and he goes down for another nap by 3:30 and he won't wake up from that nap until 4:30 at the earliest then it's nearly dinner time.  After dinner time we get a few hours of play in before it's time for a bath and bed.  I'm exhausted just reading that.  I have come to the point where I dread Sundays because it feels like we go non-stop.

Why do weekends have to be so short?  Better yet, why do I feel so limited on the time I have to spend with my son? Don't get me wrong, he is with me all weekend, but the uninterrupted time I get with him never seems like much.  For example, he will be playing with pots in the kitchen while I am making meals I can freeze for the week. Sure, we will play in the playroom while everything cooks, but it's all interrupted.  Then I will have this great idea to take him swimming or something like that on the weekend, but without fail, something always comes up that makes it impossible to go to the pool.  Like on Saturday we both took a nap together but didn't wake up until 6pm and by the time I fed him dinner it was even later and I didn't want to take him to the Y that late at night.

Am I totally wrong in thinking that when spring / summer come and it stays lighter longer we will some how get more time?  Maybe that's what I am looking for is more time outside and we are in a winter funk?  I just don't know!  I mean we make it home around 6pm and that gives us a solid two hours to play, eat dinner, take a bath and wind down before bedtime, but it really isn't that much time.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

DATE NIGHT: Letting go of Control

Every now and then it's time to shake things up in our marriage.  This weekend Aaron and I have agreed to do a little shopping trip with a twist.  Aaron and I are both control freaks.  We both have our own sense of style and refuse to give it up.  He claims that I never dress sexy anymore and am stuck in an uber-conservative preppy dressing rut and my hubby, bless his heart, wears pants that just don't fit right (honestly it looks like he has a constant wedgie... I really hope he doesn't read what I just wrote about him on the internet!). So here is what we will be doing this weekend.  Aaron will pick out one complete outfit for me to wear and I cannot complain and have to wear what he chooses and I will do the same for him.  He has already complained about not wanting to wear pink, which I probably won't make him wear, but it's fun to tease him about it a little bit.

Then after the outfits are picked out (no matter how awful they may be) we are going to go on a date.  We haven't decided where yet, but I think I may wait to pick a place out after I see what kind of outfit he picks out for me.  I'm really hoping Aaron doesn't pick out anything trashy.  I know he wants to see me dress sexier, but I hope sexy does not equal slutty.  I'm also hoping he does justice to my curves.

I will update with pictures as soon as we make it to the store this weekend!

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Breakfast on the Go! Pumpkin Muffin Recipe

I made these pumpkin spice muffins over the weekend and my husband and son both LOVE them.  I made a bunch in mini muffin tins as well as a dozen in the medium sized pans for my husband.  This recipe made a bunch so I kept 1/4 of them out and froze the rest for a rainy day.  Here's the recipe I used:
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 3 cups granulated sugar
  • 1 can Pumpkin (I used the 15oz can)
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup Apple Sauce
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Combine flour, spices, baking soda and salt in large bowl and in another bowl combine sugar, pumpkin, eggs, apple sauce and vanilla in large mixer bowl; beat until just blended. Add flour mixture to pumpkin mixture.  Next you will add the batter to your muffin tins.

Bake for 25 to 30 minutes at 350 degrees.
Here is a picture I took on my phone of my yummy muffins.  If anyone can tell my why Blogger insists on publishing my pictures sideways I would really appreciate it!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Quick Breakfasts - Peanutbutter Pancakes

Most mornings I am rushing out the door to get W to his nanny and me to work on time.  My awesome husband takes care of getting him dressed in the morning, but he has to leave at 7:30 and we don't have to leave until 8:20 so it is up to me to feed the little guy.

The problem I run into with breakfast is that's when I give him his multivitamin with iron so I have to avoid giving him anything with a lot of dairy in it (there goes yogurt and cottage cheese).  More often than not I feel myself falling into a rut with breakfast or I say to hell with it and give him dairy and move when I give him his vitamin that day.

Thankfully this weekend I was motivated and made a huge batch of Peanut Butter Pancakes and Low Fat Pumpkin Muffins.  I put some in the refrigerator and the others I froze so he has them to eat at a later time.  I like to think I make his pancakes healthier than most.  I really try to ensure he has a protein, dairy (unless he is taking his vitamin), whole grain as well as fruit and or vegetable at every meal.  These pancakes are full of whole grain, fruit and protein and I'm pretty darn proud of myself for coming up with the recipe.  Here it is:

1 Cups Old Fashion Oats
1/4 Cup of Apple Sauce
1/2 Cup of Milk  (add more if you want a thinner batter)
1 Small Banana
2 Tablespoons of Peanut butter
1 Teaspoon of Cinnamon 
1 Tablespoon Vanilla (I LOVE vanilla so I always go heavy on it)
1 Tablespoon of Brown Sugar or honey (optional)

I mixed everything together in my Magic Bullet and voila!  There is the batter.  After that I make the pancakes like I would normally.

Here is a picture.  I'm sorry it isn't prettier and that blogger won't let me flip the image.  I almost forgot to take it until I had everything all cleaned up and frozen.

Stay tuned tomorrow for low-fat pumpkin muffins!

Monday, January 7, 2013

My Nursing Journey with W

This weekend I was working on putting things away and organizing our freezer when I found a few of my last frozen bags of pumped milk that needed moved to the deep freezer with the rest of my milk.  While I am super happy to be done pumping I am bummed that at some point very soon W will be done nursing.  I seriously LOVE nursing.  It has been such an awesome bonding experience and to know that I am doing everything in my power to give my little man the best possible start makes me feel awesome.

Nursing wasn't always easy for me.  When I brought W home from the hospital he at lost a pound and a half and for the first month I had the most difficult time ensuring he kept weight on him.  I felt like I was nursing constantly, but he wasn't gaining.  Not only was he not gaining weight, but my nipples were so sore that my toes curled every time he went to nurse.  Thankfully, my hospital has an awesome nursing support group that meets once a week that was a huge help along with a mommy board I belong to.

On top of him not gaining weight I was terrified of what would happen when I went back to work.  I had a few ounces frozen in the freezer, but what if that wasn't enough? And how much exactly would he eat in a day?  I cannot tell you how much milk I gave my nanny the first day back to work, but it was enough (thank goodness).

When I went to pump at work I was fortunate that I do have a private office and could pump at my desk while I worked.  The problem for me came when I went to pump.  I set my pump up (complete with my sports bra with holes in it so I could pump hands-free) and turned it on.  I had a few pictures of W on my desk to look at as well as one of his blankets I could smell to help with the let-down.  I figured I would sit there for 15 minutes and I would be done.  WRONG.  It took me nearly an hour to get 3 ounces!  At that point W was almost 2 months old and eating about 12 ounces a day plus what he nursed when I went to visit him at lunch.  In order to keep up with how much he was eating I was going to need to figure something out quick.  My pumping schedule from January until July while working was as follows:
Pump 2-3AM  = 4oz  - 8oz
Pump 7:20-7:30AM (while nursing on the other side) = 1 - 2 oz
Pump 10-11AM = 3-6oz
Pump 2:30-4PM = 3-5oz
Pump 5:30-6PM = 1-2 oz
Pump 8:30-9:30PM = 1-2oz
At my height (and this only happened a few times) I was pumping close to 27 ounces a day. 
(the numbers above reflect when he was eating between 12 and 27 ounces a day while with his nanny).

I quickly came to the realization that I was married to my pump.

When he started eating more than I could pump I would freak out that I would run out of my freezer stash.  Thankfully that never happened and I still have a sizable stash in my deep freezer that I plan on donating to a milk bank.

I think the thing that drove me nuts was when I was on the road for work.  I took W with me on every overnight business trip I took and thankfully my wonderful mother made those trips with us.  My first one was when he was about 8 or 9 weeks old.  We had to drive 5 1/2 hours to the opposite end of the state.  I learned to pump when I drove.  This would save time, prevent engorgement and give W a fresh snack during the ride.

I always traveled with a big cooler (as well as my nursing cooler that came with my pump) to ensure my milk stayed cold and would only stay at a hotel that had a mini refrigerator.    I brought all my bottle cleaning and sterilizing supplies with me to the hotel and would wash bottles there.  As far as pumping while working on the road I still remember the first time I told my candidate I needed a 'break'.  Thankfully she was a woman and very understanding.

I really wanted to share this story with any other nursing moms out there especially the working ones who may be struggling to continue nursing their babies or may be struggling with returning to work.  YOU CAN DO IT!!!!  Looking back on all the milk sweat and tears the last 13 months I am so glad I continued to nurse.  There are so many memories that I will cherish and look back on and laugh throughout my entire experience. 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Bye Bye Facebook! - Facebook free for 4 Days!

On New Years Day I made the difficult decision to deactivate my Facebook account.  For me, it has been like a bittersweet breakup.  I find myself occasionally looking at my phone and clicking on my Facebook App and the sign-in page comes up.  I finally deleted the App off of my phone, iPad and internet browsers.  I had no idea how often I actually logged in just to pass the time and 'check-in'.  Those seemingly quick check-ins (5 minutes here, 10 minutes there multiple times a day) really added up and would distract me from the important things in my life, like giving my son the attention he deserves.

Why you may ask did I decide to continue blogging and Tweeting?  I feel those social media outlets have not monopolized my time in the same way that Facebook has.  I'm not constantly checking my blog or Tweeting, in fact I would like to blog and Tweet more often.  When i say more often I mean tweet between 1-4 times a day and blog at most once a day.

At the end of the day do I really think that I will be off Facebook for an entire year? No. I would be happy if I could stay off for a few months and see how that changes the dynamics in my home.  I already feel like I am a more attentive mother and wife and it has only been a few days.

Friday, January 4, 2013

Back from Holiday Break!

I am finally coming out of my post election haze and one of the things I want to work on this year is to improve my blog and keep up on posting at least once a week. 

This year we went to visit family on the other side of the state for a few days before driving home on Christmas Day only to be woken up by a stomach virus that wreaked havoc on our family for almost a week.  Now that the virus has worked its way out of our house and our work schedules are returning to normal (I have no clue how I'm going to handle a full work week next week) I'm sure it won't be long before we fall back into the same dull routines.  I already notice that our meals have been so boring lately.  Most nights I find myself too exhausted to put any effort into cooking. 

Last night I tried a new recipe I found on Pinterest.  It was for Cheesy Quinoa Broccoli Bites.  I paired it with some pasta sauce and voila dinner!  What I did:

  • Prepared two cups of Quinoa 
  • Defrosted some broccoli florets in  the microwave
  • In a separate bowl I combined eggs, Italian seasoning, salt, pepper, cayenne pepper, paprika, Parmesan cheese, cheddar cheese and mozzarella cheese and milk
  • Cut the broccoli into smaller pieces (about the size of a dime) and add it to the bowl in the eggs
  • When the quinoa was done I let it cool for a few minutes then added it to my mixture
  • Once everything was thoroughly blended together I greased a muffin tin scooped it into the tin and baked at 350 degrees for 20 minutes
I do not have exact amounts of the things I added.  I like to eyeball things when I cook, but I will say that they were super yummy and W really like them.  I baked some in a mini muffin tin for him and have leftovers for tonight.  I cannot wait for dinner!