Saturday, February 26, 2011

What is Your Worth?


Any of you SAHM's or WAHM's feeling discouraged or under appreciated? Check out this site...

mom.salary.com

Find out how much you're worth annually! If I got paid a salary it would be over $177,000 - I'm awesome.

One qualm I did have with the site - it has you plug in your weekly hours for different activities. You can only plug in 168 hours (24x7)...what mom doesn't multi-task?! I can be feeding my infant while reading to my preschooler all at the same time. I can be cleaning my kitchen while paying bills while singing songs with my preschooler - all at the same time. But that's okay - I'll be happy with my pretend income of $177,000!

Go check out what you're worth!

Friday, February 25, 2011

4 Week Weight Loss Update

4 Weeks after baby and I'm down from 180 to 145...and sadly I've been holding steady at 145 for almost a week. So I think that means the water weight is gone and I have to work off the rest. But that's okay. It could've been worse. So...15 lbs to go till I'm satisfied, 20 to go till I'm super satisfied!

I wanted to post a picture - but my hubby is out of town and my 2 year old can't really work the camera too well...so it'll have to wait till next week. Maybe I'll get one up on Saturday.

2 more weeks till I can workout!! Super excited. I really want to try Zumba finally - but I doubt I'll be making it to a class anytime soon. So...any recommendations for a good zumba dvd? Or any other good post baby workouts?

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Currently Watching: Peep & the Big Wide World

There are few kids shows that I'm crazy about...very few - this is one of them! Peep and the Big Wide World is adorable, educational, and not annoying! It's a win-win. We check out dvd's from our local library - but you can also view episodes online here.

I love the animations and I love that it is narrated by Joan Cusack

I love you Peep! Little Miss loves you too.

Check out the website for games, activities, music, videos, and episodes to watch with your kiddos.

What are you and your kids currently watching?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Why I'm a Mom: Wordless Wednesday

Monday, February 21, 2011

Honest Abe

Does this holiday make anyone else want to eat Cherry Pie? I'm just sayin'...

This has been a somewhat confusing day to celebrate with a 2 yr old. First of all - trying to explain a "country" to her is a little abstract. Secondly, the leader of the church we belong to also goes by "President" so differentiating the two has been interesting. But I think we've managed okay. I kept it nice and simple and just focused on one of my favorite presidents - Abraham Lincoln.

We started out by visiting the library and reading a gamat of books, these three were our favorites...




Then we broke out Little Miss's piggy bank and played sorting games with all the coins, talking about the men on the money at the same time...



We also did coin rubbings and colored a picture of Abraham Lincoln. {cilck here for more president coloring pages}


The coins gave me an opportunity to introduce our next activity easily, making a silhouette of Little Miss, like the men on the coins. However, she didn't want a silhouette of herself, she wanted one of her dolly - so we did that instead.



We then watched a movie about Abraham Lincoln that we also checked out from the library, I love the library. And talked about why he was such a good president.


I also want to make Honest Abe hats out of black poster board - but we'll probably do that later. You'll just have to picture a cute 2 yr old girl with a ridiculously tall hat on her head. =)

How will you celebrate Presidents Day and teach your children the importance of the liberty we have and the amazing men and women that got us here?

: : SCROLL DOWN FOR MORE PRESIDENT'S DAY ACTIVITIES : :

Celebrating President's Day Preschool Style

As your kids are home from school on Monday, take time to learn a little about the holiday we will be celebrating. Here are a few ideas to get started.

• Learn about each President. I found this awesome website that has info and activities for each President. Even though President’s Day celebrates the birthdays of Washington and Lincoln, you may want to spend some time learning about other presidents as well, particularly our current president.

• After learning about President Lincoln and Washington, make a mobile about them. I just had my daughter color a few pictures that described each one (the hat they wore, the money they are on), then hung them underneath that president.


• Learn all the Presidents in order. Make up a funny tune to remember them.

• Learn more about money. Talk about who is on each bill and coin (emphasize the ones that have Lincoln and Washington on them). Practice sorting or counting money, and learn what each coin is called.

• Discuss our flag. Look at how they have changed over the years. Discuss the meaning of the stars (one for each state) and stripes (13 colonies). Then decorate one! Just print out a blank flag, then use paint, glitter, scraps of paper, crayons, etc to finish it up.



Happy President’s Day!
________________________________________________________________

Marie is a stay at home mom of two adorable kiddos who keep her super busy! She has a dual degree in Elementary Education and Early Childhood Education and continues to use her degree everyday of her mommy career!

Marie is one of my good friends and someone I look up to very much as a mommy. She has tons of fun ideas for things to do with your kids - so keep an eye out for her future guest posts.

Friday, February 18, 2011

3 Week Transition to Family of 4

The last three weeks have been - in some ways - exactly what I expected. And in others - nothing like what I expected. Little Miss has done awesome filling the role of big sister and is such a great helper! She's had moments of needing more attention - but generally she's very good about sharing mommy and daddy.



Something I did not expect was that she would stop taking naps the same time we brought a new baby home. I guess it was time. But wow - kind of bad timing. There is no break for mommy now, ever. That has been very hard. Showering is definitely a luxury. My projects have been put on hold. My day consists of changing bums, wiping bums, feeding mouths, and...that's about it.


I would wake up earlier than the kids to get my "me" things done - but since I'm waking up every 3 hours with Little Man right now...the thought of depriving myself of more sleep is less than appealing. Once he starts sleeping longer - I will be waking up earlier to have some alone time. Meanwhile - what do I do!? You ladies that have done this before have any suggestions as to how I can keep my sanity? Any ideas are more than welcome!



I have decided that if I take it a day at a time - with realistic expectations - knowing that I might not get anything done except for playing with my children, that's okay. I've also decided a few minutes of "me" time daily is a must. I didn't even have to ask my husband, he just knows. Bless him. He is amazing! And, now my "me" time is up...=) Back to family time. I'll leave you with these cute little hands to look at - he loves to hold his own hands. ::sigh:: adorable!

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Deceptively Delicious...mwa-ha-ha

The other day we had chicken patty sandwiches on buns & cauliflower for dinner. Little Miss dissected her sandwich (her thing as of late) and only ate the chicken.

She then declared she was done and I was not about to pick a fight - especially since daddy was out of town and not here to back me up.

So I suggested we have shakes for dessert. I then took her plate and when she wasn't looking added the bun and cauliflower to her fruit/yogurt shake. I tasted it and it was delicious! And yes, she drank the whole thing. Sucker!

Really - love this book! Love the simple idea it takes and once you understand a little bit about how to hide things in food - you can do it to your everyday recipes! Or when you're in a pinch with your 2 year old and decide to make *shakes* instead of fight.

It is also very much related to how you can make your own baby food - which I cannot wait to do again! I love my food processor! Oh, and I love my knock-off magic bullet blender my honey got me for Christmas. Here are a couple of the recipes from the book I've tried and posted about...


Easy Lasagna

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Why I'm a Mom: Wordless Wednesday

Friday, February 11, 2011

Why Women Have 3 Children

So I promised the story of my induction - so here it is! We woke up early the morning of the 28th, showered, ate, and had everything ready before calling the hospital. They told us to come in at 7:15 to get started.

By 7:45 I was hooked up to an IV dripping pitocin to get my contractions started. And we waited. I started having regular contractions (every 3-5 min or so) almost immediately - but nothing too painful. At 11:30am my doctor came in to break my water. Which really, was no big deal. I'd heard lots of people say it was painful - it was nothing. I was dilated to 4 cm at that time.


Within half an hour (noon) my contractions were incredibly intense and painful! Worse than I'd felt with my first. So I asked for my epidural. By 12:39pm the epidural was complete and I was feeling quite a bit better.

At 1pm I was pain free and dilated to 5 cm. So Ryan left to grab a bite to eat. I told him not to bring it in to the room because I was starving! Ice chips just don't cut it. I also told him I was going to take a nap.

The nurse said she'd come back at 2pm and check me again.


By 1:10pm I was feeling painful contractions through my epidural again...weird. The baby's heart rate had dropped so the nurse came in to check on things. I told her I could feel the contractions so she checked me again - this is around 1:15pm. I was dilated to 9 cm!! From a 5 to a 9 in 15 minutes! Crazy. No wonder I could feel the pain.

Ryan hurried back (luckily he was just eating in the hall). The nurse frantically told me not to push - since I felt like I needed to - while she rushed around the room prepping everything and calling my doctor at the same time.

My doctor was 5 minutes away from the hospital.


As the nurse prepped the room I kept thinking - really!? Already!? I was just so amazed at how fast everything happened. I thought we still had a few hours to go - so did the nurse and doctor.

When he arrived I was fully dilated. After 3 minutes of pushing through 2 contractions my Little Man joined our family at 1:39pm! 3 minutes!! That is a HUGE improvement from the 2 1/2 hrs I pushed with Little Miss.

Some other things that were different...

With Little Miss I had 3rd degree "star" tares - I tore in 3 places, really bad. Recovery was super painful and took a long time.

This time around only one 2nd degree tare. Much better! Your body just does so much better the second time around - and that is why people have the third kid. Each time it just gets easier!


I also told my husband shortly after my epidural that "I love epidurals, I would marry one if I could" - yep. Not sure how he took that. =) Really though, I don't know how women give birth at home without pain meds. It amazes me.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

The Ultimate Man's Valentine's Dinner

First - my sister is amazing. She made the following for her husband on a date night...


Cake? Nope! Meatloaf!! What guy wouldn't love that!? She frosted her cake shaped meatloaf with mashed potatoes and decorated it with ketchup "frosting" - so creative! And sneaky.

And for dessert...(make sure the kids are in bed) - these are not your typical cookies...


Just turn your hearts upside down and get creative! When I saw these on How Does She - I could not stop laughing! Love it! I would've never thought of it.

Are you making something special for your honey on Valentine's?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Why I'm a Mom: Wordless Wednesday

Monday, February 7, 2011

Valentine's Activities

Helping in your kid’s class Valentine’s party? Want to have some Valentine’s fun at home? Then here are a few ideas to get you started...

• Make pictures out of different sized hearts. Use your imagination to create animals, flowers, etc.


• Pin the kiss on the frog prince. Take an old classic (pin the tail on the donkey) and turn it into a Valentine’s game.


• Decorate cookies: Any excuse to slather frosting upon a cookie….yummy! Enough said.

________________________________________________________________

Marie is a stay at home mom of two adorable kiddos who keep her super busy! She has a dual degree in Elementary Education and Early Childhood Education and continues to use her degree everyday of her mommy career!

Marie is one of my good friends and someone I look up to very much as a mommy. She has tons of fun ideas for things to do with your kids - so keep an eye out for her future guest posts.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Nursing Uniforms: Sponsor Spotlight

I am not a nurse - but who doesn't love the idea of lounging around in comfy scrubs all day? You know you do. I know I do!

My newest sponsor is Nursing Uniforms - they have the largest selection of nursing uniforms around! Free shipping for orders of $100 or more (so get together with some friends/co-workers and order up!) and they have fashionable prints, not just drab one color items...

Really - some of their nursing tops don't even look like nursing tops, super cute!

"Are you a medical professional? Are you trying to find the right uniform for your profession, one that looks good, is beautifully designed and lasts for a really long time? Working as a medical professional is hard enough; do you have to settle for boring uniforms as well? Check out our colorful, stylish, beautifully tailored, naturally breathable cotton nursing uniforms, medical uniforms and scrub tops today.


What’s more, our prices are hard to beat for the quality and the style we bring you. With fashionable scrub tops at as less as 11 dollars apiece, why would you want to wear the boring old standing issue scrub tops again? Browse our collection of happy colored and printed scrubs today, and find the one that looks best on you!"

Head on over and show my newest sponsor some love!

Nursing Uniforms

Friday, February 4, 2011

40 Week Challenge


It's been a week since my Little Man was born - oh how we love him! But more on that later...it's time for a horribly embarrassing confession...

When I had Little Miss I only gained 25 lbs...this Little Man made me gain 45!! ::sigh:: 45 lbs...ugh. Good thing he's cute {note adorable picture on the left}!

{*Update 2/5/11 - My math was wrong - he made me gain 55 lbs! Even better...I topped off at 180, oy. That hurts to say. So...as of today I've dropped 25 lbs, I'm down to 155lbs.}


So I figured since I went from this...{note the skinny face}


...to this...{note the fat face - gotta love water weight}


...in 40 weeks. Maybe I should challenge myself to see what I can become in the next 40 weeks. *I'm going for thinner, not thicker* So that's my plan. And being held publicly responsible on my blog for my transformation will probably help me be a little bit more motivated. So if any of you are struggling with weight loss for any reason - please join me! Maybe we can help each other get over those plateaus.

First order of business - this great little new gadget on my sidebar, I found this site through a friends blog and love it! I'm excited to track all of my activity.

My goals for the coming 5 weeks (while I'm still recovering and can't do a lot) - is to walk as much as I can. Which proves to be a challenge since it is ridiculously cold outside where we live. Think I'll join those retiree mall walkers in the morning. =)

My ultimate goal is to be back to my 125 lbs by the end of 40 weeks and back into my skinny jeans! Cannot wait! And yes, I will be posting things like my weight and pictures (whether good or bad).

Have any good post-baby weight loss tips? Please share! My last pregnancy all I did was breastfeed and that was enough - but again with the 45 lbs, I think I'll need to do a little more than that.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Homemade Valentines

I always feel that homemade is better. Instead of buying the store-bought valentines this year, have your kids make their own to give out at school or to family members.

There are many ideas for homemade Valentines. But here are some we are making this year. That’s right---bust out the white lacey doilies, stickers, stamps and glitter glue—we’re doing old school valentines.



A few more ideas:

• Handprint heart: Dip your child’s hands in paint or ink, then place on paper to form a heart.


• Fortune Cookies: For something a little more formal, make these fortune cookies from felt. Then write things you love about your valentine on strips of paper to place inside them. My daughter made these for her Daddy last year, and he loved it. For a tutorial, go here.


Happy Valentine making!
________________________________________________________________

Marie is a stay at home mom of two adorable kiddos who keep her super busy! She has a dual degree in Elementary Education and Early Childhood Education and continues to use her degree everyday of her mommy career!

Marie is one of my good friends and someone I look up to very much as a mommy. She has tons of fun ideas for things to do with your kids - so keep an eye out for her future guest posts.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Why I'm a Mom: Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Books for Fair Trade

Have some books you've read and don't want to keep? Instead of giving them away - you can always trade them for other books online! There are a couple of different sites you can go through - super easy to use.

Just set up a user account and start listing your books. Soon you'll get requests for your books, ship them media mail (which is way cheap), and request your own books from other users!

I have used Book Mooch - not too bad. But from what I hear Paper Back Swap is more user friendly and has a greater selection of books to choose from.

One thing I do like about Book Mooch is the ability to set up a "wish list" - then you'll get emailed when someone lists one of the books you want so you can go request it from them, you don't have to constantly be searching the site inventory.

Have you used either site? Or a different one? What was your experience?
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