Monday, February 23, 2015

A Rockstar Birthday

It didn't surprise me that Little M's birthday fell on Random Acts of Kindness Day.  It's like it was meant to be, with all the people who treated us with kindness.  Kindness that I could never say thank you enough or repay, but only pay it forward.  His birthday will always remind me of the love we received at such a crazy time.

Little M has rocked it since the day my water broke.  He stayed strong in mommy's belly for almost a month longer.  So it's only fitting that we celebrate his birthday the way he deserves . . . like a rockstar!


The above photo was taken on his actual birthday.  We celebrated with a family and friends over the weekend.  Which could not have been complete without a smash cake, decorated with his favorite snack, puffs.


And a few outtakes that had me laughing so hard.




Happy birthday to the little boy who keeps me guessing, laughing and crying.  I love you with all my heart!  Rock on!

Monday, February 16, 2015

First Year Giveaway

Our baby boy turned one year young today!  I can't believe it.  It feels like yesterday that tears came to my eyes, as I kissed his precious cheek, before he headed to the NICU.  This has been one of the most challenging years of my life - mentally, physically and emotionally, but Little M, you have made me so much stronger for it.

In honor of Little M's first birthday, we have gifts for you!  One blessed reader will receive everything below.  These are some of the top items that not only helped us survive, but thrive.  Thank you to each sponsor who donated an item to this special giveaway!

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Dr. Brown's Newborn Feeding Set
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MisterManPants Baltic Amber Teething Necklace
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One blessed reader will receive all the products above.  Simply fill out the Rafflecopter form below to enter.  Open to US residents only.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Never Take A Day For Granted


This picture was taken a year ago, yesterday.  These beautiful women surprised me at my hospital bedside just days before I was to give birth to my baby boy.  I was caught by surprise when my water broke a couple of months early.  These girls knew I wasn't fully prepared.  I didn't even have clothes for him.  But these ladies left their young ones behind and came out on a cold, snowy night to shower me with love.

Though this picture is full of joy, it also brings back some tough memories.  You see Big C in the bottom, left corner?  Well, what you don't see is the nest in the back of her hair.  It was a big mess. (Kind of like the way I felt about my life at the time). That sweet, precious girl was without her mama for almost a month.  Everyday she would come visit me for about an hour, bringing me handmade gifts and hugs.  Everyday that she came in, she looked different to me - bigger, smarter, funnier.  I felt like I was missing out on so much of her.

This picture reminds me not to take life for granted.  Mine, and those close to me.  No matter how hard it is or how much I struggle, I never want to miss another day of my babies' lives.  I want to remember to make every day a meaningful day, full of love and blessings.

This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24








Tuesday, February 10, 2015

Our Disney Side @Home Celebration With A Princess Pajama Tea Party

Disclosure: I received free products in order to host a Disney Side @Home Celebration.  The opinions expressed here are my own.

Since moving back to Florida, our family has been all about Disney.  So when we were selected to host a Disney Side @Home Celebration, I knew our little princess and her friends would be so thrilled!  And us caregivers were overdue for some much needed girl time.

When I first opened our Disney Side box, I was overwhelmed by the amount of Disney goodness.  I couldn't believe how much fun could be packed in one box.  I definitely had to keep this from Big C or she would go crazy.


We decided to have a Princess Pajama Tea Party with all our goodies.  My first step was organizing, planning and inviting.  Since moving into our new home about a month ago,  our lives have been very busy.  So I wanted to make sure I kept the party simple and relaxing, but tons of fun!

Decorations were all provided by Disney Side, so it was just a matter of deciding where to place the decor.  We chose after dinner for our royal tea party, so our guests were treated to snacks and desserts.  Food included popcorn, grapes, Chex Muddy Buddies, a Mickey Mouse Tie Die cake and, of course, princess pretzel wands (see recipe at the bottom of post).  Twinings of London provided us with our royal tea.



For entertainment the princesses colored, painted nails and created beautiful hair barrettes.  The barrette maker was a big hit!  We also played pin the mouth on Mickey Mouse, which made us all giggle.



Before our little princesses headed off to their own beds, they couldn't leave empty handed.  Take a little peak inside their goodie box!  And every princess' caregiver received a goody box of their own, too.



Thank you Disney Side @Home Celebrations for a magical night!  We are truly blessed to have shared a special night with family and friends!

Pretzel Fairy Wands Recipe

Ingredients:

1 1/2 cups of white chocolate chips
10 pretzel wands
Decorative sugars, candies or sprinkles

Directions:

1. Microwave the white chocolate chips for 15 second intervals until they are nearly melted.  Stir the chips until you have a smooth icing.

2. Dip the tip of pretzel in the chocolate and swirl until the end is covered.

3. Sprinkle chocolate with sugar, candies or sprinkles.

4. Lay on wax paper to dry.

5. Repeat steps 2-4.

Disclosure: I received free products in order to host a Disney Side @Home Celebration.  The opinions expressed here are my own.

Duck Commander Devotions For Kids {Review and Giveaway}

Disclosure: I wrote this post on behalf of Tommy Nelson and received a promotional item to thank me for my time.  All views regarding Tommy Nelson and Duck Commander Devotional are my own and were not influenced by other sources.

Have you seen A&E's hit show, Duck Dynasty?  I have to admit, I've never seen the show, but when choosing a devotional for Big C, this one seemed perfect for her.  We just finished up our past devotional when Duck Commander arrived at our door.  The first look at this book and Big C was very excited to dig in!



Each daily devotional shares a verse and it's meaning in a way that young children can understand, by using short stories.  In addition, there is a short prayer and a hand's on activity to bring the verse to life.

I am sure that both big Duck Dynasty fans and those who have never seen the show before, would fall in love with this devotional like we have.  Though this book is simple for Big C to understand, it also helps to create conversation and allows Big C to ask questions.

You can purchase the same book Big C has for $16.99 from TommyNelson.com or choose from a variety of other faith products.  This book is perfect for both boys and girls, ages 4 to 8!  Don't forget to stay connected with Tommy Nelson on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest for all their latest products and discounts.

Tommy Nelson is giving away one copy of Duck Commander Devotions For Kids to one blessed reader!  Simply fill out the Rafflecopter form below to enter.  This giveaway is open to US residents only.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Bring Life And Beauty Back to Your Skin With Amazingly Beautiful {Review and Giveaway}

Disclosure: I wrote this post on behalf of Trusted Health Products and received promotional items to thank me for my time.  All opinions regarding Trusted Health Products and Amazingly Beautiful are my own and were not influenced by other sources.

When I first decided to live a more natural and healthier lifestyle a few years ago, one of the steps I took was slowly switching out my beauty products for more natural ingredients.  I switched out everything one step at a time, including hair care, deodorant, toothpaste, make-up and skin care.

Our skin is the largest organ of our bodies.  So I know that I need to take good care of it.  The cosmetic companies has little regulations when it comes to ingredients in their products which ends up hurting our bodies and compromising our health and safety.  When I choose a skin care product, I try to look for pure live ingredients.

When I was asked to try out Amazingly Beautiful, I couldn't resist.  The 100% pure live ingredients are the perfect living "foods" my skin cells need.  With two young children, I have a hard time keeping up with a complex skin system.  Amazingly Beautiful simplifies daily skincare needs by combining the functions of cleanser, toner, moisturizer, protector, repairer, blemish controller and age-defying serum.  I use one product in the morning and one in the evening, instead of five to ten products a day.

There are no harsh ingredients in Amazingly Beautiful.  It is free from preservatives, parabens, petrochemicals, synthetic ingredients, fragrances, GMO's, dyes or additives.  Just pure ingredients that are perfect for any skin type, dry or oily.

I've been using Amazingly Beautiful for about a month now and I am very pleased with it.  I love the way it feels, smells and it's simple application, too!


For a limited time, the manufacturer is willing to offer my readers on FREE bottle.  They said they would love to have my readers try out Amazingly Beautiful A.M. Moisturizer (for women) or The Man A.M. Moisturizer (for men) and agreed to send one bottle FREE if my readers would pay a minimal shipping and handling charge.  This is a one-time only offer!  They also agreed to include two eye-opening reports - The Poisons You Put On Your Face Everyday and Why Your Skin Care Products Have Never Worked: The Truth Revealed.  That's a total value offer of $40.  Click here to get your free bottle and reports.

Amazingly Beautiful is giving away an Amazingly Beautiful A.M. Moisturizer to 3 blessed readers (no shipping and handling chargers for winners).  This giveaway is open to US residents only.  You - or anyone in your household - may win one bottle of Amazingly Beautiful one time only.  Previous winners, please do not apply.

Stay connected with Trusted Health Products on Facebook.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Tips From Our First Disney Adventure With Our 4 Year Old

We took Big C to Magic Kingdom for the first time.  And it could not have gone any better.  The weather was perfect, the crowd wasn't too much and the joy on her face when she got to see Mickey was priceless.

My husband ordered MagicBands for the whole family.  I definitely recommend doing this.  With a MagicBand, you can set up FastPass+ and get on rides quicker, unlock your hotel door and link it to your credit card.  

We headed to Orlando the day before.  We had lunch with Big C's cousins as we dined with the dinosaurs in Down Town Disney.  Grandma and Pop Pop took Little M home and we headed to the Yacht Club for the night.  When you sleep at a Disney Resort, your parking pass also gives you free parking at Disney.


The next morning, we ate a quick breakfast at McDonald's and headed to Magic Kingdom.  We made it to the gates just as they opened (a suggestion from a reader and friend).  We packed several snacks for Big C and brought her a stroller.

We hit all our FastPass+ rides first and the lines under 10 minutes in between.  We were able to get in several rides before lunch and before the crowds started rolling in.  We decided to have lunch around 11 when it wasn't too busy.


We continued with more rides, shows, ice cream and fun!  The one thing Big C was really looking forward to was talking to Mickey Mouse.  She wanted to give him a Mickey Mouse sticker so bad.  It was very sweet to see her excitement when Mickey talked to her, hugged her and accepted her sticker with such gratitude.  Watching my little girl's dream come true made me tear up.  It definitely was my favorite part of the day.


The longest line we stood in was 35 minutes.  That was for Mickey.  That length of time for her to wait was pushing it.  But we survived!  We headed out of Magic Kingdom around 5 with a balloon and Mickey souvenir.

Do you have any other suggestions to make a Disney trip smooth and enjoyable?