Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Fotor Photo Editor

Fotor is a free online photo editor that allows you to edit a photo, make a collage, create cards and other super fun stuff!  It's really easy and simple to use.  Using Fotor's photo editor you can resize photos, crop them, adjust the lighting, adjust tones and colors, and that's just the simple stuff.  You can also play around with different effects and photo frames.

You can also make sure you look your best with photo retouching.  You can use the blemish remover to remove any unwanted spots, use the wrinkle remover to make yourself look youthful, remove red eye, whiten your teeth...all for free!

An even cooler feature is the ability to add photo text.  Go online, edit your photo, and add some really cool text to it.  It's perfect for thank you notes, invitations, and cards.

There's even an app for that.  Fotor app is available for iPhone and Android phones as well so you can edit your photos on the go.

So when you're choosing sites to edit your photos use the completely free online photo editor Fotor.

Dancing With Gracie Giveaway

If you have little girls in your life, you know that a well coordinated bow or headband can pull any outfit together.  I can't get enough of headbands and bows.  They just ramp up the cute factor!

Dancing with Gracie is a "sassy and sweet children's boutique" with some of the most adorable headbands and bows I've ever seen at very reasonable prices.  I love mom run businesses and Cara is a busy mom of 3 (a 4 year old, two year old, and a brand new baby!).  She's following her dream and pursuing her passion of creating quality products for children.

I received a headband and hand sewn flower clip for review and I don't have enough good things to say about these products.  They're sturdy enough to hold both Isabella's insane mass of hair and Arya's growing locks.  The headband was comfortable, not too snug, and stayed on.  And it fit both of their heads, so that's a huge plus.  And they really are just completely adorable.  It took me over an hour to decide what I wanted and I'm going back for more.  I need to accessorize all the Spring clothes I'm hoping that it will be soon enough to wear some day.

That's the best shot my wiggle worm let me get

If you would like to purchase anything from Dancing with Gracie just visit her website at or...

You can enter to win a $25 credit to Dancing with Gracie so you can pick out whatever you want!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Monday, March 24, 2014

I Hate to Play

There's a lot of things about motherhood that I love, like reading books, going to the park, going out for ice cream, play dates, puzzles, board games, movie night, snuggles, arts and crafts...a ton of things. But there's one thing I really hate to do and that's imaginative play. 

I love that Isabella has such a great imagination and I love that she uses that imagination to create magical worlds full of dragons and princesses and talking snowmen. I love that loves to play school or doctor or chef. But I don't love to play those games with her. 

Call me what you will, judge me if you must but I can never keep up with the constant rule changing. I never do it right and she inevitably gets pissed off at me. "Mommy you're not a dragon anymore now you're an evil queen." 

Also, I always have to be the douche bag character. I never get to be someone good or normal because she wants all of those roles. And sometimes I just don't feel like crawling on the floor pretending to be a puppy. My knees hurt and my back hurts. 

So what's your take on this? Am I the worlds worst mother or am I in good company? 

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

10 Months

Weight: 20lbs 8 ounces

Height: 27 inches

Sleeping Habits: Well we actually broke down and did some sleep training.  Nothing crazy, but both reached our breaking point when she spent nearly a week waking up every two hours.  It was enough.  So we let her cry.  Nothing out of control, but one night she did cry for about 30 minutes.  So sad, but now she hardly cries at all.  She'll fuss at around midnight, but puts herself back to sleep.  If she wakes up at 3 I'll nurse her and then she'll sleep until 6 or 7.  Not bad.  Not perfect, but manageable.  She takes two naps about an hour and a half each. 

Eating Habits: We still EBF and she takes bottles of pumped milk when I'm at work.  She eats every 4-5 hours.  She'll take 4-5 ounces in a bottle. She gets breakfast, lunch, and dinner and some snacks.  She loves pretty much anything except eggs and pot roast.   

Milestones: Standing on her own, cruising the furniture, saying "up" "car" "baba" (bottle) "mama" "bella"  

Best Thing This Month: Getting to get outside for some fresh air!  We had a few warm days here and there 

Challenges This Month: Keeping her from getting into all of Isabella's not safe for baby toys.  We had to move somethings around since Arya is wicked fast.  

Looking Forward To: Disney world next month
.  I cannot wait!

Monday, March 17, 2014

Happy Saint Patrick's Day

Check out these little lucky charms!

The leprechaun also came and paid us a visit.  Leaving a trail of shamrocks to a sweet treat.

He also taped Isabella's door shut

 A very happy St. Patrick's Day to you and yours

Thursday, March 13, 2014

Let It Go

No this is not another Frozen disection/rant/rave, although I do love to belt me out some Adele Dazeem.  However, I am taking a page from Queen Elsa's book and freeing myself by letting some emotional baggage go.

I tend to be overly sensitive and I internalize a lot and I need to let a lot of that stuff just go.

Take the situation that I recently bemoaned about some of my friends chipping in for a shower gift and not including me, my sister, or our other friend.  No one else was even bothered by it but me.  I love my friends and I'll always be part of their lives, but I need to let it go and accept that I'll never really be in their inner circle, I'll always be on the periphery.  That's just how it is.  They have more history together than I do with them.  They have more access to each other.  It's just the way that things are.

I need to let go of the idea that my house will ever look like anything but a second hand toy shop while my kids are still young.  As long as I can keep it clutter free, I'll have to accept that.

I need to let go and accept that I'll never be a laid back easy, breezy type of person.  I'm type A all the way.  I crave order and structure and routine.  I need organization.  I wish I could be a seat-of-my pants, carefree, free spirit, but I'm just not.  It's not me.  I need to embrace who I really am.  I'm awkward and not exactly what you would call a person that people gravitate to, but when I do make a connection with someone it's a true connection.  That's fine.  I don't need to have the most popular classroom on the floor, I'm happy with the friends I have in my life, even if it's on the periphery.

I'm mean to myself a lot.  I bully myself.  I have a lot of anger inside of me.  I get really frustrated when I'm not in control or when things fall apart.  I need to let that go.  I need to learn to find a way to get right with myself, to love myself, to forgive myself.

Monday, March 10, 2014

A Hot Mess

I am what I lovingly refer to as a H.A.M...a hot ass mess.  I am just buried.  Buried in paper work.  Buried in clutter.  Buried in toys.  Just buried.

My classroom is a cluster fuck of papers.  It's report card time, we just finished another round of practice tests that need to be graded, I like to analyze the tests to make small groups, plus let the parents know the scores, plus plan out my lessons.  I just feel like I can't breath at work.  Like I'm just constantly scraping together and barely coming up for air.  I feel like I just can't catch up!  One of my students said to me the other day, "Sometimes I feel so bad for you because you always have so much paper on your desk."  Me too kiddo.

The deep freeze of this winter is finally starting to thaw and the snow is melting and the sun is shining and it makes me want to burn down my house and start fresh...or maybe just do a deep spring or the other.  I want to throw out all the junk.  Donate all the donateables.  Maybe sell some stuff on ebay and have a giant garage sale.  I'm just a little short on time.  But clutter makes me bananas and I need to clean and organize all the things.  I wish that the container store would just start sending me stuff out of pity.

We have way too many toys.  Toys on top of toys on top of toys.  My basement looks like a toy store.  I need to chuck the broken stuff.  Store the stuff Isabella no longer plays with and make a pile to sell at my imaginary garage sale that I'm having in the Spring.

I really am just a frazzled hot ass mess of a woman and I need to really pull myself together.  The thing is I'm happy. I never thought it possible for my anal retentive ass to be happy amid crazy chaos.  Don't get me wrong I'd be happier if my coat closet wasn't about to burst at the seams, but I'll take what I can get.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

What I've Written

Here are a few posts I've written for Parent Society  if you like 'em, it's always nice to share with your friends!

10 Underrated Things About Being a Mom - The silver lining of motherhood.

The Bright Side of Weaning - Helping make the transition from breast feeding a bit easier.

25 Ways to Know You Are in Your 30's.

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

My Kids Are Killing Me

Slowly, but surely my children are pushing me into my grave.  The little one is a keeper, not a sleeper.  So she runs me ragged all night long.  Sometimes once, usually twice, occasionally 5 times.  I wake up and my eyes burn and around 2 pm I smash head first into a wall and I'm propping up my eyelids with tooth picks by 9:30.  As a result, my skin is sallow and my under eye bags could take home the gold.  They should totally have mom olympics.  We could compete for under eye bags, who can make a meal out of snacks from the back seat, and multitasking.

Then there's the fact that now little miss Arya is very, very mobile.  So she's off exploring the house and their I am tailing behind her, having mini heart attacks every time she tries to reach/eat/climb for something.  She's my little explorer and surely the next thing I'll find is a head full of gray hairs.

Then there's Isabella who is full of piss and vinegar and is just about as sassy as they come.  The other day she was whining in the bath so I said to her, "You're not even having any fun because you're wasting all of bath time whining."  She stares me dead in my face and says, "I am having fun.  You don't know my feelings."  So there's that.

Sunday, March 2, 2014

Her Sparkling Life

I broke my own cardinal rule:

Don't compare your life to those you see on social media.  You're comparing your behind the scenes to their highlight reel.

I recently started following a girl on IG that I was fairly close with in high school.  Her photos were beautiful.  The highlight reel to what looked like a sparkling life.  She looks beautiful, all tanned and toned.  Her clothes fit her and her body is amazing.  Because, as her quotes suggest, she's disciplined.  She's a yogi.  Photo after photo of intricate, and awe inspiring yoga poses.  Trips to Puerto Rico.  Cocktails at sunset.  Pictures of her and her friends at fun locales.  A cool apartment in NYC. A wardrobe to die for.  A sparkling life.

Now she might look at my life and be envious.  Envious of my beautiful and happy kids.  My lovely home.  My happy marriage.  Sometimes life looks better from the outside in.

But I'll be honest, I became envious, a little downright jealous.  I know what you're going to say, "the grass is always greener" right?  And I know she might be fighting her own private battles, as we all do in our own way, but more or less it stirred something inside of me.

I've been in a bit of a rut lately.  A rut with my writing.  A rut with my life.  While I love and crave routine, my routine has become a little too predictable.  Go to work, come home, squeeze in a 20 minute workout dvd, make dinner, get the kids to bed, watch TV.

I want to take yoga classes and have cocktails with Andy at sunset.  I want to write a book.  I want to take a class.  I want to go shopping.  I want to look in the mirror and not hate the body that bore and nourished my two little girls.  I want to add some sparkle to an already happy life.

So what's holding me back?  That voice in my head, we'll call it fear, whispering:

You can't.  You're not good enough.  You have no time.  All you have is excuses.  You'll never do it.  You don't have the money.  You don't have the support.  

Like a loop in my head.  I really am my own worst enemy.  I'm just not sure how to let go of the fear, of the excuses and really push myself to live my fullest life.