Monday, August 28, 2017

All Momed out + Fun Mom Dinner Movie Review.

Not long ago I was invited to attend an early screening of the movie "Fun Mom Dinner" with The Moms Network. I am so happy I did. I enjoyed every minute of it, and laughed so much! I saw myself in each mom some way. I am tired, like Kate. I am trying to live life to the fullest, like Jaime. I am trying to keep it all together, like Emily. And I am trying daily to be super mom, like Melanie. They all shared very different personalities, but all of the same mom feelings - which is what made them all click and become such good friends, who enjoy a very eventful "mom dinner". It is most definitely a movie I would suggest every mom to watch. It made me really think about the kind of mom I am, and how much better it would be to have a group of mom friends to enjoy the ups and the downs with. It also very much so made me realize that I actually do not have that kind of mom friend.

This was a tough one to write because I don't want any of my friends to be offended in any way. I have great friends who just live too far or have too much on their plate and that is okay. Sometimes you get so caught up being a mom, and when you do find some time for yourself, you would much rather spend it in silence. But there is nothing more necessary for your sanity than a couple good mom friends, and unfortunately, I do not have a ride or die mom friend - at least not yet. I have mom friends I see once a year for a birthday party. I have mom friends that I get together with during the holidays to plan PTA events with. I have mom friends who I can text here and there to complain about being tired. I have mom friends, I just don't have that ONE mom friend, you know the one you can rely on for everything. The one that you can consider their kids your kids too! The one that you can expect to pick up your slack when you forgot the kids had to be picked up early from school, and you are stuck in traffic. That mom friend that you can invite over every Tuesday to cry with while watching This Is Us. That one mom friend that feels more like family, rather than just a friend. Your kids are just as inseparable as you both are.... That's the kind of mom friend I have been trying to find in the last six years, and it's exhausting. Many have come close, but people change or move and you are back to square one.  I know it takes effort, and having children around you constantly can affect your effort in friendships, so of course, its easier said than done. But I do know it is not impossible. I understand it also takes lots of effort from me too, and let's face it I forget to text back sometimes too - my mind makes me believe I am responding when in reality I just stared at my phone and responded to myself.  I need to make more of an effort if it is what I feel I really need.

But I also know that even if I don't have a mom friend I can confide in 24.7, I do have support coming from all other sides. I have my friends with no children, who I get to see about twice a year or so and I know regardless of the different lives we live they care for me.  I have my mom friends that live so far, but still text me when they have some down time to chat. I have my family who is the most supportive family I could ever ask for. Lastly, but most importantly -  I have my little tribe I call my own family that I can hands down rely on to keep a smile on my face daily.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Roots CoffeeBar & Cafe - Our trip to Wisconsin Part One.

I found a little place that felt like home ... but it's more like a two-hour plane ride.

We went on our first real family vacation this summer to Milwaukee, Wisconsin. We have gone on vacations nearby like Philly, Pensylvania, New Jersey, Atlantic City. Everything that is pretty much at a driving distance. So it was kind of a big deal! I have so much to share from our trip but I am going to do a different post for each place we really enjoyed during our stay there.

First stop. Roots Coffee bar & Cafe. It was everything I have always wanted in a coffee shop, that you just can't possibly find out here in NYC. It was spacious, lively, and had so much variety - from coffee to juices, to breakfast and lunch. Even a kids menu - now that's golden for any momma who enjoys coffee. I was able to enjoy a coffee and a salad, while the boys sat at the kids table, coloring and eating their pizza and mac and cheese. I would call that heaven!

After we ate we decided to go sit in one of their cozy sections on a couch overlooking the space. They had reading material and outlets all over the place. Perfect space to get some work done if necessary. If only they had a place like this by my home - it was every blogger's dream come true area. Not a loud, overcrowded Starbucks like we are all used to in the city. It truly gave me One Tree Hill - Karens Cafe vibes, and I was loving every minute of it.

Their coffee was perfection, and their food was AMAZING. Usually, in NYC it is one or the other. My little picky eaters loved it all from the waffles they ate one morning, to the pizza they had once during lunch hours. I wanted to try just about everything on their menu but the first time we went I tried their chicken caesar salad which had just the right amount of everything in it, and then the second time around I tried their "The Who" Wrap ( Chicken salad, mixed greens, avocados and tomato on a wheat wrap) --- It was even better than I expected it to taste.

This family friendly coffee shop was opened by owners Heidi and Hilary. They always had a vision of opening up their own coffee shop because they liked the community feel that it brings to a town. They wanted a safe place for people to be able to meet and spend quality time together. They opened the shop in 2011 and since then have been around helping people make lasting memories. In 2015 they received The Women in Business Leadership award from the Oconomowoc Chamber of Commerce for their commitment to the city.

On this gloomy and wet day in NYC sitting in my living room writing this I truly am missing me some Roots coffee and comfort. Hoping to soon return on a trip out there, just so I can return to the coffee shop I have always visioned in my head as THE perfect coffee shop.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Time for Dad with JORD.

Time is the most precious thing you can give your children, and you don't need to be rich to do so ! Growing up my parents spent so much time on me - making sure I was happy and well taken care of. It's honestly what I remember most : teaching me how to ride a bike, taking me swimming, and sitting down to eat dinner as a family every night.  It is in the end a big part of who I am.  I enjoy the simple things in life because my parents taught me that is what matters most ! In this day and age it is so easy to just distract your children with tablets, and tons of different toys so you can enjoy your dinner ; but it's not worth it if you can't spend real quality time together.

My boyfriend is a great dad to my two angels. He loves venturing out with them and doing things they will forever remember! Even if it's just heading to the library for a little bit , he will sit and read with them - I am pretty sure that is a memory they will always keep with them. They will always know that we spent all of our time making them happy.

Thanks to JORD I was able to say thank you to him for taking the time to be a good dad every day! They sent us a beautiful wooden watch from their collection! When I opened up the box I was in awe of how perfectly crafted it looked. It's so simple yet so classic, and perfect to dress down in but can also be used to dress formal for festivities. He wears it everywhere - whether it is out to the park with the kids; or on date night when it is just the two of us. 

Just the right reminder to show him that we love him just as much as he loves us !

Click on the link here to check out their women's collection 

Lucky for you guys I am hosting a giveaway with JORDOne lucky winner will win a $100 gift code to use on their website plus everyone that enters will get a $25 gift code to use on any watch!

Hurry the giveaway will close August 20, 2017 at 11:59pm. Both the $100 and $25 gift code will expire on November 12, 2017. Good Luck!

(*This post is sponsored, but all opinions are of my own- as always !)

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Enjoying the simple things

In this day and age it's tough raising a child. There's iPhones in every persons hand, toy commercial after toy commercial, and social media just keeps growing into a competition on who is living the "best" life. I truly miss the days of dial up internet and beepers. Can they create a time machine already because I would gladly go back to 1999, and stay there. 

Unfortunately there isn't too much I can do about it but just force , yes I said force my children to enjoy the simple things in life. Something as simple as sitting in silence and watching the sun set or the clouds form into animals. It will most definitely not be on their list of favorite things because they are too young to quite understand the benefits of down time, but it is something that should be set for them anyway. Sometimes allowing your child to be bored just a tad can spark their creativity a little, and throw them into an adventure they wouldn't have been possibly on if they stayed glued to the television. I remember being young and I would get in trouble so my parents would not let me play with my toys - right there is where I found my passion for simple things like writing, and reading.  It also opened my eyes to pretend play and using random things to play school or doctor. I spent hours on hours playing school, I should have known then that it would bring me into a career in childhood education. 

You don't want to raise a child who grows up to be never satisfied with what is handed to them. I see it all the time when a child is told to go to the library and you see the agony on their face. Or when their Christmas present isn't exactly as big as they expected it to be. No judging because those have once been my child and it absolutely kills me. I feel like I have failed them as their mother because they value more what they are getting from the experience than the experience itself. BUT this is something you can consistently teach your child until they receive it and use it in their daily routine all on their own. 

I have always been a mom who goes overboard for birthdays for Christmas , even thanksgiving where I would give them a present to show them how thankful I am for them (never again!) -  because everything else I do just isn't enough to show my love and devotion to them right ? We sometimes over do things for our children that are better off simplified. We believe it's going to show our love for them , or we use the excuse that we want them to have everything we didn't have, but they are kids who don't need ten Imaginext houses or four of the same Spider-Man's. They just need to be shown how simple it is to love the life you are given because you were only given one. So before you start to complain about spilled milk (literally) or not making it to the bus stop on time - remember those little eyes watching you and show them that every little thing is going to be alright, if they just take some time to enjoy.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

My Blogger Bash Experience


It was my first time at Blogger Bash on Pier 60,  all thanks to Bloggin' Mamas for letting me go as part of their team.

Blogger Bash is just a big space for all bloggers to get together , get to know each other - and just uplift each other. Being a blogger is fun, and has its perks. But there is no denying that it is a job in itself ! It isn't easy, or just a way to pass time. If you take it seriously and are constantly trying to grow as a blogger it takes lots of time , consistency, and even more time. So being able to enjoy something like blogger bash while still working/ networking with brands and companies is a perfect setting! 

I was surrounded by strong hard working women all day , and being able to hear their stories at the Armitron: Turning passion into Adventure breakfast panel was so inspiring. The moderator was Lyss Stern, author and CEO of marketing agency The pointers and tips given to grow your blog into a brand, and how to work with different companies. Learning to not be scared to get a "no" and knowing when to try again. I loved hearing how they started out their blog/ brand journey and got to where they wanted to be at the end. It was definitely empowering to see them reach for a dream and birth it.

And the Armitron watches are all just so stunning. I couldn't even pick a favorite. Adding them all to my Christmas wish list for sure! 

After that we went right next door to BabyPalooza. A great space filled with many brands specifically for all of babies needs!

I really enjoyed meeting the different brands that were there and getting to know them. Down below are just a couple of brands that I will most definitely be using with my kiddos from here on out!

- Oilogic : 100% Pure Essential Oils care for kids roll ons. They are non toxic, and all natural with 26 different oils for so many different needs, like - sleep, stuffy nose, cough, bug bites, and itches, even ouchies and booboos! I have already started using the Sleep roll on and I even use it on myself at night sometimes. I have been loving it. I have a feeling we will be living off Oilogic from here on out!

-Re-Play Childrens Table ware: Dish ware for toddlers and kids that are made out of recycled FDA approved, food safe plastic. They are super colorful, and just so easy to use. I got myself a couple of plates, bowls, and utensils and I want even more now. It has definitely become my boys favorite dish ware for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

Lastly I am going to talk about Tiny Beans - A online baby journal. where you can share pictures, milestones and videos of your children in a safe way with any family member or friend you want. A private social network that the whole family can enjoy together. I love this idea, because there are just some things you do not want to share via facebook, or you just dont want to be that over sharing mama that people cant stand. I have signed up and will be sharing lots and lots memories with all my family members now!

Soon enough I will be having Part 2 up of my Blogger Bash experience, from Sweet Suite!
I already can not wait until next year.