In a Little Over a Week…

…Jimmie will be two. Two! When he gets older, we are going to tell him we bought him a house for his second Birthday. It is still pretty crazy around here. Believe it or not, we still haven’t even taken a obligatory family photo in front of our new house! I wish the weather would get better so that we could play in the yard again. Last week was perfect. Here are some more moving week photos for you to enjoy!






Happy Friday! Enjoy you weekend. Even if it will be rainy, like ours.

Fit Snack April 2016 Subscription Box

fit snack logo

April has brought a lot of changes to our family. The biggest one being that we bought a house. With the craziness of the move, I was able to get my Fit Snack subscription sent to our new place. It was nice to have healthy snacks on hand while we were unpacking; we sure did need some good energy!


Heath Warrior Chia Bar: Superfood protein bar that is made with chia, quinoa, and oats.

Wilde Chicken Bar (sweet Thai basil) and Wilde Turkey Bar ( turkey cranberry): Made with lean-meats and 100 calories per serving. I’m not a fan of meat bars, but Jim seems to enjoy them. He said they taste like good MRES. So, there’s that. Gluten-free! Great for individuals who are watching their cholesterol.

Betty Lou’s Smackers: I wish this didn’t have nuts in it because it sounds so good!Contains 13g of protein and yummy ingredients like chocolate, caramel, and nougat flavoring. Gluten-free!

Betty Lou’s Nut Butter Balls: My mother-in-law really enjoyed this snack! Since it is obviously made with nuts, I didn’t try it. Just like the Smackers, this bar contains up to 13g of protein and is gluten-free.


Vintage Italia’s Pasta Chips: These were SO good!  It was like eating a bread stick in chip form. I wish the bag was bigger.; I gobbled them up.


Purely Elizabeth Granola: Granola that nut-allergy suffers can eat. Yay! Made with organic and natural ingredients.

Life Aid Recovery Drink: Made with no artificial sweeteners or colors. I didn’t like the smell of this drink, therefore I didn’t drink it. I’m not big on workout supplement drinks.

Chinook Seedery: Sunflower seeds with a bit of spice. I do love sunflower seeds. Nice treat instead of the reoccurring nut packets in the boxes.

I love trying new, healthy snacks from Fit Snack every month. As a busy mom, trying to eat healthy is easier said than done. I like not having to worry about shopping for healthy snacks since I get a ton each month in the mail. Not only can you have your Fit Snack box sent to your house, you could also send it to your work. You can stick the box right into the desk for easy snacking throughout the month. Nothing beats not having to go to a vending machine for a bag of chips.


If you have never heard about Fit Snack, please check out another one of my posts about the amazing subscription box company based out of Colorado. I love how each box comes with new exercises, workout tips (this month was a body sprint workout), and coupon codes for some of the snacks in the box.


For your chance to WIN a free Fit Snack box, head on over to their contest page here. There is a chance to win every month. Enter today so that you can start snacking healthy tomorrow!

I was sent a Fit Snack box in exchange for an honest review. All of the options are my own. Thanks Fit Snack!


Book Review: Here’s the Plan. Your Practical, Tactical Guide to Advancing Your Career During Pregnancy and Parenting. By Allyson Downey


Here’s the Plan.  Your Practical, Tactical Guide to Advancing Your Career During Pregnancy and Parenting by Allyson Downey is for women who want to continue to work after they have a baby or want to start working during their pregnancy or shortly after. Included in the book are tips to let your employer know you are pregnant, how to handle discrimination if it happens, how to deal with paternity leave, and how to get back into your career without losing too much speed. Allyson Downey states in the introduction how her book is a a “choose your own adventure book.” You can pick and choose which chapters apply to you and which ones don’t. There is no need to read this book cover to cover (although I did) if you can only relate to some of the advice. With that being said, I learned a lot from Allyson Downey’s debut book. Maybe I have been living under a rock, but I had no idea what struggles pregnant women faced in the workforce. Of course I assumed it was difficult to get a new job while you are pregnant, which is why I didn’t look for one when we returned from Korea. And of course I knew that women (and men) do not get nearly enough paternity leave. What I didn’t know was how many working women struggle with the decision to tell their bosses and colleagues that they are pregnant in fear that, in the long run, they will lose their jobs.

I was shocked to see how much you may need to think about (depending on the company) when it comes to announcing your pregnancy. Allyson Downey suggests just casually mentioning it and reinforcing the the fact that it will not affect job production, although ultimately it will. I tell people all the time that “mommy brain” is real. Just yesterday I couldn’t think of the word “credit.” Such a simple word, but my brain felt like mush trying to think of it. Allyson Downey states that your brain’s “cognitive capacity” (pg. 201) will return, eventually. She gives plenty advice on how to become more productive and how to remember simple tasks after returning to work. She also gives on advice on how to task out your responsibilities while you are away on paternity leave.

Currently, I do not work. I was interested in this book because I am planning re-entering the workforce in the fall. Allyson Downey encourages the reader to let their future employer know that they do have a child or children when they are looking for a job and to ask about paternity leave policy in the interview. You want to be up front in your interview and not hide the fact that you do have (or want) a family; finding a family friendly company is ideal. Allyson Downey also gives suggestions about pumping at work and protocol for pumping rooms. There are laws that protect pregnant women and mothers, but many of these laws have flaws that I was never aware of before reading, Here’s the Plan.  Your Practical, Tactical Guide to Advancing Your Career During Pregnancy and Parenting.

The “Finding a Caregiver” section in Allyson Downey’s book is very helpful for anyone going back to work or anyone that needs to find a childcare after they have been a stay-at-home mom for any amount of time. Allyson Downey  talks about daycares, nanny’s, and au pairs. There is also quite a bit of information in Allyson’s Downey’s book about postpartum depression and how you need to take care of yourself after you have a baby. This particular section of the book hit home for me. I wish I had read it before I had my little guy. I really liked all of the personal experiences collected from real moms. One that had me tearing up and nodding my head is:

Your brain is a jungle, with tall grass and tangled vines. There’s a path through it, but it’s full of snakes. You’re terrified of that path, but everything else seems impenetrable. Walking down that path is the only choice, even though the snakes keep biting you. In real life, that path is prompting scary thoughts like, ‘I’m never going to feel love for my baby, or What if I drown the baby while giving him his bath?’ Pg. 210

What is interesting is that while I was reading this section, I reflected on the past two years of motherhood and thought, “I don’t feel that way anymore.” It was like looking back into a dream that was starting to fade. It was helpful, scary, and reassuring all at the same time. On the next page, when Allyson Downey talks about making time for yourself, I wanted to scream YES, YES, YES, as I read this line: “I daydream about being able to stay in bed with my coffee and a newspaper. It sounds totally ridiculous to people who don’t have children.” Pg. 212 I thought, “She gets me. She really gets me.”

Since I am not working, as I stated above, I could relate most to the loneliness of staying home, more than other parts of the book, but that doesn’t mean other chapters and advice won’t help me in my near future.  I also want to state that every working mom (or dad) are not going to have the same experiences. It was hard for me to understand how women feel the need to hide their pregnancy for so long, when it is natural and a miracle. My world includes many friends and family members who are teachers who have wonderful support systems at schools and receive great paternity packages.  This profession that was not mentioned in the book. I hope that one day, my child will live in a world where women and men won’t have to choose between family and career. We read so much about how we women can’t have it all, but I beg to differ, and so does Allyson Downey, we can have it all, and we will.

Allyson Downey is the co-founder of Weespring, a website that givens parents, friends, and family, detailed reviews on baby products. I know I had trouble deciding which baby tub to buy, which swing, and which baby monitor to purchase. This website was created to help with those decisions. You can purchase Allyson Downey’s newest book here.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Happy Home

Normal posts will resume shortly. Until then, here is what happiness looks like…




Occasionally in life there are those moments of unutterable fulfillment which cannot be completely explained by those symbols called words. Their meanings can only be articulated by the inaudible language of the heart. -MLK Jr.

Book Review: Forever My Little Boy by Karen Kingsbury, Illustrated by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff


What a sweet, endearing book about raising a little boy. When I first saw this book, I thought it was a children’s book, but it is the opposite. Forever My Little Boy: Loving Your Son for Now and for Always by Karen Kingsbury is a beautiful short story for moms, dads, and grown-up little boys. The story begins at the birth of your little boy and continues through adulthood. I was in tears by the end; it was the ugly kind of cry. The small boy changes right before our eyes, on each page, just like our own children do. It really did make me pause and think how fast Jimmie is growing. As you know, the old saying goes, “The days are long, but the years are short.” This book is a reminder of that. From first steps, riding a bike, playing football, driving a car, and getting married, Forever My Little Boy takes the reader on a memorable journey.

Throughout Forever My Little Boy there are lovely illustrations by Joanne Lew-Vriethoff. The boy with the backpack waving goodbye is where I started to get choked up. When I think of Little Jimmie growing up, that is what I see in my mind. Him standing on his school steps, waving goodbye, on his first day of kindergarten. There are also bible verses and little prayers throughout the entire book that reflect different stages in your son’s life. The line that made me shed my first tear is, “The mother knew that she had to share her love for him with someone else.” This line is on the page where her little boy is falling in love.

With Mother’s Day and Father’s Day quickly approaching, this book would be the perfect gift for a new mom or dad. It would also be a great gift to give your own parents or your own child that has their own children. Whoever your purchase this book for, I would include a package of tissues to go with it.

I was given this book in exchange for an honest review. 

You Color My World

Little man has been sick for a few days. Since it has also been cold and rainy, we have been stuck inside. Trying to pack, occupy a sick toddler, and stay sane is easier said than done. Moments like these, though, make me one happy momma.


It’s funny because we all get so wrapped up in milestones that we forget how little they really are. I have been trying to get Jimmie to color (and not eat the crayons) for at least 6 months now. I’m glad we can finally enjoy some quiet coloring time together. It would have been a perfect time for me to relax, too. But, unfortunately, I already packed up my adult coloring books.





Those tiny hands. They get me every time.


Even though we are moving, we still have time to display Jimmie’s first masterpiece that he colored all by himself. #proudmom

Book Review: Night Night, Daddy by Amy Parker Illustrated by Lee Holland


You know I love a good bedtime story. Sadly, I didn’t love this Night Night, Daddy by Amy Parker, and neither did my husband. Although, I must point out, that Little Jimmie is a big fan. Which is really the only person in our house that needs to like the book. He particularly likes the pancake page; kid loves to eat.





I do like the concept of Night Night, Daddy. A little fox is having a special day with his dad. They fly kites, eat pancakes for dinner, talk about God and the moon, have a bubble fight, build a fort to sleep in, have a tickle fight, and pray before bed. The illustrations by Lee Holland are bright and beautiful. With that all being said, I just didn’t like the actual words in the story. There are too many forced rhymes; some lines that don’t even make sense to me.


Even though my Jim and I don’t love this book, Jimmie really does enjoy listening to his daddy read it to him before bed. He also really likes looking at the pictures, as you can see by the photographs above.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.  

Book Review: The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George

Disclaimer: I didn’t finish this book because I just didn’t like it as much as I thought I would. Life  is too short to read books just because you feel obligated to. 


Monsieur Perdu is a lonely man in his 50s living in France. He lives in an apartment complex where everyone seems to know each other. Monsieur Perdu is pining for the woman who he thought he would share his whole life with. To keep him from solving his own problems, he tries to solves other people’s problems by prescribing books that he thinks will make them feel better. He owns a little bookshop on the water in a barge, a floating bookshop that never moves. He owns over 8.000 books but claims to be able to prescribe over 30,000 books.

I really wanted to like The Little Paris Bookshop by Nina George, but I just couldn’t get into it. There were too many characters and a lot of information that I couldn’t keep up with. It is an easy book to read and I love the book medicine concept. Books can be the best medicine. With that being said, it is also an easy book to get distracted from. I just couldn’t finish it. I hope Monsieur Perdu finds happiness at the end.

I have really been striking out lately with books. I am in a rut. This is the third book I have started and have not been able to finish; that is very unlike me. I have learned, though, that if I can’t get into the book within the first 50 or so pages, then I probably won’t get into it at all. Why read a book that isn’t making you happy? I think Mondieur Perdu would agree. Who knows, I may get try again one of these days. If that happens, I will be sure to update my review.

I was given a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

An Open Letter to New Moms Who Want to Make Friends


Making friends as a mom is hard. Real hard. Hard like trying to go to the bathroom while holding a screaming newborn, hard. Hard like trying to walk your dog and push the stroller, hard. Hard like trying to eat and breastfeed at the same time, hard. I think you get the picture, it is pretty stinkin’ difficult.

Up until you became a mom, friends have been handed to you on a silver platter. When you were a baby, it was your caretaker’s responsibility to make friends for you. Then, you started kindergarten and you became friends with all of the kids in your class, or at least at your colored table. Then you hit middle school, there were tons of clubs to join where you could make friends with people who actually enjoyed doing the same things as you. As you entered high school, you probably had a few best friends, already. And since most high schools combine with other middle schools, there were new people to talk to and eventually hang out with, outside of class. Next, there was college. Drinking made making friends a whole lot easier: liquid confidence. After college, you probably got a job and made a few acquaintances to have drinks with at happy hour.  This probably turned into a real friendship after you felt comfortable making work jokes in front of them.

Then you had a child.

I am hoping, for your sake, you were able to keep friends you already had, pre-baby. But now it is your turn to make friends for your child so that this crazy cycle of friendship can continue. And so begins the hardest stage of friend making: mom friend making. After the first couple months of being cooped up in the house, only leaving when you have to, you decide it is time to figure out how to make friends with other moms. But then you think, ‘Where do I meet people with babies? The park? Target? The library? Organized mommy play groups?’ I can honestly say I have met people at all of these places. I have considered making business cards to hand out to other moms I meet saying, “Hey, you’re cool and your kid doesn’t suck. Call me!” If only it were that easy.

That’s the problem with making mom friends, not only do you have to like the other mom, but you also have to like their kid(s). In return, they have to like your kid(s), and the kids have to like each other. Sounds complicated, right? But wait, there’s more. You also have to find someone who has a child around your child’s age. To put the cherry on top, the parent you become friends with has to have their child on a similar eating and sleeping schedule. Honestly, the schedule is the most important part. Kids nap and eat at all different times. If your kids are on completely different schedules, hanging out becomes more of a chore than a luxury.

I’m telling you all of this because one day you will want to put real pants on and leave the house. And if you come home without any new friends,  you won’t feel like it was a waste of makeup. It took me a long time to have the courage to even introduce myself to another mom, let alone give them my number. Fact: It’s harder than dating and, unfortunately, wine and beer aren’t an option for liquid confidence anymore. But it isn’t completely impossible. Sure, I had a lot of bad “first dates”: I didn’t like them, they didn’t like me, their kid was annoying, my kid was annoying, etc. But, eventually, I met a few keepers. Someone needs to come up with a platonic dating website for moms. It would be a hit, I swear.

Now you are wondering, ‘Is it even worth trying so hard to make a friend for my kid?’  My answer is YES. You need mom friends and your child needs friends, too. I truly believe all moms are desperate to make friends and want to make a connection with someone else. Yet, we are all scared to take the first step; no one wants to look weird, needy, or creepy. But in order to survive motherhood, mom friends are a must. And if you stay at home, like me, hanging out all day with just your kid eventually gets boring and lonely, for both of you.

So get out there, Momma! Put on pants, brush your hair, try to look like a normal human being, and go make some friends. You got this!­