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Why It’s Important to Create Holiday Traditions with My Kids

 2017.. see…. irritated LOL

2017.. see…. irritated LOL

My kids are young, they could care less about the holidays right now. RJ JUST turned 4 so I’m excited that he’s starting to have a better understanding of the holidays and why they’re special, but prior to this year he could care less. Even still, I have tried to make it a point to create our own traditions once the fall season starts. We have been to the pumpkin patch every year, we visit Santa every year and we take family holiday photos. These are all things he doesn’t care about now but I hope with time they’ll both appreciate the countless fall/winter activities I drag them to every year.

Children take in and remember so much. Some of my favorite fall memories come from apple picking with my family. I love that we still come together to celebrate Christmas though our family dynamics have changed, and I love that we get to wear holiday pjs ALL day on Christmas Eve. I feel like we have such very few things bringing joy to everyone nowadays and I want my children to be able to look back and think “I loved doing this with you guys, even though we did it EVERY year.” It’s important to me for them to have that. I’m glad they’ll be able to look back and see/feel the love.

Do you have any special traditions with your kids during the holidays? What’s your favorite tradition from childhood?

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I Have to Stop Calling My Oldest a Toddler

My family and I were hosted for the weekend at The Hotel ML & CoCo Key Water Resort in exchange for sharing our experience with you! As always all opinions expressed are my own.

A week and a half ago my big boy turned 4. I cannot believe that I have a four year old. It was emotional when I realized that I don’t have two toddlers anymore. I have a toddler and a preschooler. A whole school aged child. How did that even happen? Wasn’t I just sharing his birth story like yesterday? It’s unbelievable.

Anyway, we’ve started trying to travel more especially for birthdays. Our children are blessed to have big families and of course.. blog life, so they truly don’t need anymore “things”. We took a big trip to Disney and LEGOLAND this summer and I was hoping to be able to take RJ back to LEGOLAND for his birthday this year. Bonus: knowing your children! My kids LOVE water so I was on the search for an indoor waterpark, not too far from the city where they could “swim” to their hearts content, and have access to other amenities as well.

Thank God for Coco Key!

If you live under a rock somewhere, CoCo is an OG when it comes to the indoor waterpark game. Located about 2 hours from our house, it was the perfect distance for us to take a short family road trip. We left in the afternoon and got to the resort early evening. We didn’t get to check out any water park features that evening, but I thought it was great that inside CoCo Key they hosted family movie nights both nights that we were at the hotel. The first night they showed COCO (one of RJs favorites and the second night they played Horton Hears a Who. The boys opted to just watch COCO in the room but I loved that they still had the option of an evening activity.

The next day was the day RJ probably dreamt about all night. We woke up for breakfast downstairs (the hotel has packages that offer buffet breakfast with your stay), went outside for a little while, and then we waited. RJ asked over and over if we could go to the waterpark but we were waiting for his cousin to show up and he had no idea. When they got there it was finally time and we headed around the corner to the water park (thank God for a first floor room!).

So how did they feel?

The boys absolutely loved the waterpark, as expected. I love that Coco Key has something for everyone. They have 2 hot tubs, a lazy river, multiple slides and a kiddie pool plus more. All ages were enjoying the 80+ degree temps as if it were a summer day in NJ. Another cool thing was there were multiple birthday parties going on. I never thought to have a whole party there, but I guess I haven’t gotten that far into mom life and birthday planning yet. They have birthday party packages as low as $228 for up to 10 kids. That is really an amazing price for the fun your kids are gonna have. To check out their rates, you can visit their reservations page here.

Have you stayed at Coco Key? Are you a waterpark fan? Am I the only one sad that my kids are growing up? LOL

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What’s On The Outside Counts: Why We Choose JOHNSON’S® for our Bedtime Routine


This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #JohnsonsLovesBaby #ChooseGentle #CollectiveBias

CLICK THE IMAGE ABOVE TO DISCOVER MORE JOHNSON’S® PRODUCTS AT CVS!

I know I cant be the only one that feels like as mothers in the age of social media our decisions are constantly under a microscope. People are telling us whats best for our baby before they’re even born. You’re having a baby? You definitely need to breastfeed over formula. You had pizza at your one year olds’ birthday party? You’re horrible for not being a Pinterest mom and not serving homemade dinosaur shaped vegan chicken nuggets. Vaccinate? Poison. Don’t vaccinate? Selfish. What’s going into our child’s bodies is constantly critiqued and we often neglect to remember that what we use on the outside is just as important. 

I have super sensitive and dry skin so it wasn’t a surprise to me that in some form or another, both of my boys have the same issue. I was really excited to hear that with 50% fewer products,  JOHNSON’S® is new and improved inside and out. As a brand that we’ve all grown up with, I’m excited to have them as a part of the boys bedtime routine. 

If you know my children then you know ALL DAY LONG its a turn up. We try to make bath time the beginning of wind down time (so no joint baths or that’d be a disaster) & this is where  JOHNSON’S® excels. Both of my kids can win gold medals in the bath time swimming olympics so I love that JOHNSON’S® Baby Shampoo provides a mild, gentle clean that doesn’t irritate their eyes during bath time.

We follow up hair washing with JOHNSON’S® Bedtime Moisture Wash which, have you smelled lately?! It smells amazing and is designed to help relax babies before bed. Combining all of these things and finishing off with JOHNSON’s® Bedtime Lotion has made our routine not only smell amazing but worry free because there are no dyes or sulfates in their products. We can have the great smell, AND a clear conscience! 

 This is his new picture face. Boys, right? *eyeroll*

This is his new picture face. Boys, right? *eyeroll*

But seriously, I’m ready to head back to CVS and stock up on ALL the things (especially since they’re running a special Buy 1, Get 1 50% on Johnson’s® Baby + Spend $20, Get $5 ExtraBucks)! It’s a problem when I wander into that baby aisle, AND my local CVS has a good makeup section! Take. my. coins.

Are you thinking about what you put on your baby just as much as what they consume? What products are a part of your bedtime routine? 

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Confession Time: I’m SICK of Having to Put My Kids First


Every morning (or night if you will) my alarm goes off at 230am. I snooze like 5 times, and then I try to detach Zayn without waking him up, sneak out of the room and get dressed in the living room so that I can be at work at 3 effing 30. In the morning. Since James works overnight also, that means I have two kids I then have to (sometimes) dress and move in the middle of the night to their respective locations so that they aren’t left unsupervised. Thank God for family!

Zayn’s first winter was ROUGH. I found myself calling out of work pretty often to stay home because one or both kids were sick and ain’t nobody trying to take care of a sick child that isn’t  theirs in the middle of the night. Love em or not! Returning to work is always led with “Hey what happened?” and then upon explaining my situation (sick kids, 3am, no childcare…) I always get the “empathetic “well, you have to do what’s best for your family”.

And I’m going to be completely honest with y’all and say when it comes to work vs family, I’m tired of choosing my kids. Because…. I feel like it shouldn’t even be a “thing”. I’m honestly annoyed by the guilt I feel of letting someone else down every time I have to stay home to be with them. I just want to parent guilt-free. Back in December Zayn (at 5 months old) was hospitalized for Croup and I actually had someone look at me with confusion and say, “you could’ve left him there and just came to work it’s not like he could go anywhere.” Miss……. what?!?!

I completely get that for some people the money is the motive but no one tries to make you feel guilty when you miss your kids 4th school performance for your lil $15 an hour, so why do I get so much crap for choosing the opposite end? I’m over it. I’m completely tired of the fact that I even HAVE to make choosing my kids a big deal but I’d never choose anything else. I don’t get paid enough for all that.

What’s your work/life balance like? Leave your thoughts in the comments below.

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How We Stay Connected with Walmart Family Mobile


 This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and Walmart Family Mobile. All opinions are mine alone. #DataAndAMovie #CollectiveBias

I’m thankful that we live in a time of technology. When I had RJ I was never worried about any of his family missing him growing up. There’s so many ways to stay connected from Facebook to Instagram, I even did a couple of family vlogs so that we’d have actual video of him from when he was a baby. 

Now that he’s getting older and smarter he likes to “talk” on the phone. He holds it up to his head all the time (backwards, upside down… doesn’t matter) and pretends he’s talking and if he hears me or his daddy on the phone he’s ready to take it and have his little conversation. His favorite thing to do now (other than watch his cartoons) is video chat! He knows the sound of an outgoing Skype/Tango/FaceTime call and stops whatever he’s doing to see who we’re calling.

Kids are expensive y’all! So when I heard about Walmart’s new Family Mobile PLUS plan I decided to check it out. I went right to my local Walmart’s electronic section and picked up this cute little LG Leon LTE for only $69.82 (because you KNOW how expensive smartphones can get nowadays). If you’re looking for an amazing post paid plan then this is it. Walmart’s Family Mobile plan has unlimited talk text and data and up to 10gb of that data is 4G LTE which is NECESSARY for YouTube/Disney Junior streaming while we’re on the go! You get all of that PLUS a free movie monthly on VUDU ($7 value) for only $49.88. 

 I was so hype to see the Gabe and Babe ad yall! LOL. As you can see people are ON IT! My Walmart had A LOT of phones sold out!

I was so hype to see the Gabe and Babe ad yall! LOL. As you can see people are ON IT! My Walmart had A LOT of phones sold out!

**Disclaimer: All prices for phones and plans included in this post are accurate as of the date of posting; however, these prices are subject to change. Please refer to http://cbi.as/28aqc or your local Walmart for current pricing.**

Saving coins always makes my pockets happy! Especially on bills because it leaves more money to shop ;). AND when I brought my phone home I had 4G LTE INSIDE my house! My house is a dead zone y’all no one ever has service in here! It just makes sense! I used our free VUDU movie to watch Straight Outta Compton on my iPad…. even though I’ve already seen it LOL. 

What are some ways you save money monthly? Will you check out Walmart Family Mobile?

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6 Things You STILL Need to do Daily For Your Blog


For some people blogging everyday is a piece of cake. For me, I’m happy if I get to shower everyday LOL (joking, kinda!). I could easily push out a couple B.S. posts a week but I realized really quickly in the blogging world that it’s quality over quantity! Creating good content that is actually worth reading isn’t something that I have time to do everyday and I’m sure my readers appreciate it more when my posts look like I actually put effort into them.

Anywho, if you’re looking to grow your blog or blog for more than a hobby, then creating your own posts is only the beginning! I’m about to fill you in on some things you need to be doing daily (yes daily!) to continue to grow your blog readership and keep people engaged with your content.

1. Share your blog posts. Everyday! Multiple times a day! Nobody is going to promote you like you can. You have to be your own biggest fan in this blog world and put yourself out there.

2. Be active on social media. Social media is so so important in multiple ways. Not only does it help get your content seen, it puts you in front of a broader audience and helps you to build relationships with other people in your niche or readers who can just relate to your content. Searching hashtags that interest you or relate to your blog definitely helps to find like-minded thinkers and people who will most likely enjoy what you have to say.

3. Participate in Facebook groups. A big part of blogging is community! It’s sooo easy to make friends through blogging and who better to support you than your friends?! The right Facebook groups are full of information, resources and amazing people to help keep you on track when it comes to all your blogging goals.

4. Work on your blog. Just because you can’t get a post out doesn’t mean you just shouldn’t look at your blog at all. Reply to comments, update your sidebar, work on SEO. Blogging is work and just like your 9-5 there’s always something you can be doing! Create good habits now so that when the REAL work comes in, you won’t be confused and feel overloaded!

5. Share other people’s content! Because everyone can use some good blog karma and what goes around comes around. Plus, sharing content from other bloggers is a great way to get other people to take notice of your page as well! Work smart 😉

6. Have fun! Because even though it’s work, if you don’t enjoy it then it’s all for nothing. You might as well keep the easier (but more life-sucking) job that you hate that makes guaranteed money! Blogging is definitely not for the faint at heart and my philosophy is do it with passion or don’t do it at all!

What are some things that you do daily to stay active in the “blog world?”