My Life as a Stay at Home Mom

Before I quit working full time, I thought staying at home with the kids all day was going to be all sunshine and rainbows. I thought I would be able to relax all day in pajama’s, catch up on my shows or watch some Netflix, play with the kids, and be completely stress free. Well let me say, I was wrong. Staying at home may be harder than working full time (at least in my opinion). There’s no doubt that it’s more rewarding because I get all day with my children, but it’s definitely work; lots and lots of work. One thing I learned while staying home is there is not enough hours in the day. Trying to juggle raising two wild children while keeping up on house work, is a challenge. Let me tell you…

When my second child was born I was lucky enough to be able to stay at home with my kids during the day. My husband was able take over all bill payments, so that we didn’t have to fork out an extra grand a month for childcare for our daughter.

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I’m quite sure that I only get to sit about two hours out of the whole day, if that. My day must start with coffee, or nothing gets accomplished, so as soon as Liliana gets up she gets a bottle and I get some coffee. I do get to relax for maybe 15 minutes while she plays then my hectic day begins.

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My son gets up every day around 7:15AM, so he can get ready for Preschool. Once he’s up, I start making him breakfast. While he is eating I make his lunch, pick out the kid’s outfits, and get Liliana ready. Once he’s done eating I get him ready, myself ready (if there is any time), and off to Preschool he goes. It’s about a 20-minute drive to Preschool, so I’m in the car driving for about an hour and a half a day, just to get him to and from daycare, but I love where he goes so I’d never choose somewhere closer, it’s worth the drive. He goes to a small Preschool in Maryland that he and I just love. The teachers are phenomenal, the kids are so intelligent and full of life. I can’t even begin to express how much my son has learned there. He’s only there for half a day so there is only 3 hours in between dropping him off and picking him up.

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Once Liliana and I get back home she’s usually hungry, so I make her some food and feed her, then give her the rest of her bottle. For some reason, she refuses to hold her bottle, so usually I need to hold it for her. During that time, I try to get some breakfast in for me. Between all the baby shenanigans, you can’t forget the laundry, dirty dishes, what’s getting made for dinner, making phone calls, going to preschool events and meetings, running errands, and most importantly cleaning the house.

For me to get those household duties completed, cartoons must be on the TV 24/7 or Liliana wants Mommy. There goes the whole catching up on shows or watching Netflix theory I had in the beginning of this SAHM journey. I’m pretty sure I can recite every song from the show she watches. I’m not sure if other moms have heard of it, but she is glued to ‘Little Baby Bum’ on Netflix. It’s just a bunch of nursery rhymes that play for about two hours with a bunch of characters. She absolutely loves it.  Without that show, getting household chores done would be impossible.

Before I know it, we need to head back out the door to go pick up Kyle. Within the three-hour time frame, I usually manage to get done my workout, the dishes and one load of laundry. Usually on Mondays, I’ll be able to get my meal prepping in, then another day out of the week I go to the grocery store, which I must do while my son is in school because this mama is not doing a grocery trip with two crazy kiddos unless Daddy is with me! There are also our Target trips, which could easily last a good hour.

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Once Kyle is home, it’s nearly impossible to keep the house clean. I clean up the same toys every single day, I usually just want to give up on cleaning his room. It’s like a daily cycle for us moms. Coffee, get the kids to school, get the baby fed, clean up toys, dinner, repeat. Those are the last things I want to do, and it always feels like I never have enough time in the day to just play with my little ones, so you always need to make sure you make time for that also. Sometimes the household duties can be put on pause. It’s a never-ending battle between playing and cleaning.

I don’t know about ya’ll but my kids already love to torment each other. It has already begun, and Liliana is only ten months old! I usually don’t have a voice by the end of the night after all the yelling I do. Maybe that’s why I’m a lover of wine. Kyle loves taking toys from her, then tries to suck up to her after taking them by telling her it’s okay. Then he’ll get very lovable towards her, hugging and kissing her continuously, which makes her scream since he’s in the way of her cartoons which then makes her pull at his face, and he starts his whining. These two loves each other so much, but annoy each other at the same time. They are my sour patch kids, I can’t help but adore them, but I’m pretty sure I can hear their screams in my sleep.

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This is all exactly why I LOVE crock pot meals. They simplify dinner, yet taste so delicious. If my kids and husband eat it, I am satisfied. I must say though; my husband is the best cook in the household. He has me beat, which I honestly am SO grateful for because he loves to cook sometimes, which is a huge weight off my shoulders. We all then know once dinner is over, it’s the baths and getting ready for bed. I am lucky enough that both my kids love bath time, so that is a breeze (thank goodness, because by that time I am ready to crash).

Once the babies are in bed, my day doesn’t end. We need to fold laundry, wash even more dishes from dinner, I make my husband’s lunch for the next day, then I try to have some quality time with my husband before we both crash, which isn’t long at all. Did I forget to mention that I work some evenings for a few hours to pay for Kyle’s preschool?! Yeah, sometimes I feel like supermom, and sometimes I feel like I don’t have my shit together, and I’m a hot mess.  One of the hardest adjustments for me becoming a stay at home mom is not having my own income. Yes, I work sometimes, but that pays for daycare. My husband is my life saver, he is the provider of the income, he is the reason I’m with my babies all day and he always makes sure we are taken care of.

I’m am a walking zombie most days, but the stay at home mom life is for me. It is FAR from easy, and you should never underestimate a stay at home mom. We don’t work 9-5, we work sun up to sun down. We have our good and our bad days. We struggle sometimes and can barely get through the day, and our house stays a mess. Most days I am ready to pull my hair out, but being with my kids all the time makes it completely worth it. I don’t have to worry about missing time with them or question what they are up too. They are always there with me every step of the way, through the good and the bad. I honestly don’t know how I did it with my son working full time. I do praise you moms with full time jobs, I couldn’t see myself away from my babies that long out of the day anymore. They grow way too quickly and the stress of having a clean house is fine by me. I would easily take over all the household responsibilities just so the kids are with me all day long. I am blessed to have such an amazing husband who works his butt off to give us what we have today. No matter if you’re a full time working mom, or a full time stay at home mom. We ALL bust our booty’s to keep our family going, and us moms should all stick together and NEVER judge another mom because our lifestyle is different. We can all learn from each other, and that’s one thing I enjoy about being a mommy blogger. No mom’s life is easier then the other, we all want to raise our babies to be successful adults, and that’s a challenge in itself.

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My First Born is Four!

And just like that, four years flew by in the blink of an eye. You guys, my first born is FOUR! 😩 Before I know it he’ll be a teenager.

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Today we are going to brunch with Santa at a place called Long Beach Oyster House in Maryland to celebrate. It’s all you can eat for kids & they get to see Santa. For the adults, all you can eat AND all you can drink bloody mary’s & mimosa’s. It’s a kid win and parent win! The whole family is coming so it’s going to be a good time, I’m really excited!

Yesterday was his party and we had a blast! Just like most little boys right now, his party was Paw Patrol. We had it at a small restaurant called Bogey Mccaws. I booked a private room and it had an arcade & “Ball-O-City” for the kids (it’s pretty much a huge play area with a crap ton of soft foams balls, it’s pretty neat). The kids had so much fun and I’m pretty sure the adults enjoyed the arcade just as much as the kids. Kyle had all of his friends and cousins there to celebrate. His face was lit up the entire time, and that’s all that matters, if he had fun, I had fun.

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Even Lilly had a blast celebrating her brother. My girl was knocked out last evening.

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When it comes to my kids, I want everything perfect and just the way they want it… Ok… maybe just the way I want it ;). To be honest, they just want presents, cake, and to play with their friends. It’s us mom’s who want all extravagant decorations and cakes. Is it me or did the party planning become so much more intense from when I was kid!? What happened to McDonalds parties with a happy meal, cake, and a play place. Mom’s now a days pay hundreds on cakes that just get eaten anyway and decorations that get torn down in a few hours. Trust me, I am totally one of those mom’s, but the anxiety and the hole in my wallet makes me not want to be one!

The past three years, I went all out for his parties. Just to see the money I spent go in the trash. This year I didn’t, I bought a small amount of decorations and spent a little bit more on where the location of the party was and it was SO much more fun. The kids played in the arcade, ate a bunch of pizza and cake while the adults got drinks from the bar and had fun themselves. It was a win for everyone!<<<
One of the most rewarding things about being a mom is watching your babies grow into amazing people. My son never fails to make me proud. He is one of the most intelligent kids I’ve ever met, he could spend hours building different vehicles with legos, or creating towers with blocks. The ideas he comes up with are so creative, it amazes every time. He also has that sensitive “Mama’s Boy” side then I can’t get enough of. Yes, sometimes it’s too much when he starts the whining, but I’m damn sure I’m going to miss it when he’s older. You just have to cherish every moment before our little humans turn into grown adults.

Happy fourth birthday Kyle. We love you to the moon & back. Time to enjoy a fun day ❤️

Follow me on Snapchat for our daily activities.

Ten Months of Sassiness

My baby is ten months ya’ll! Why is it so much harder to accept a double digit month then a single digit one!? Actually, why do our babies have to grow up so fast in general?! I can’t handle it. My baby fever is going to be coming back soon. I guess that calls for baby number three 😉

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If anyone reading this has met my little Liliana, you’ll know she’s a little firecracker. She’s my little sour patch kid. She’ll do something mean, then snuggle you to make you feel better. Her personality is hilarious, maybe one of the very few things she’ll get from me. Except her father is pretty humorous himself, one of the reasons I fell in love with him. She is a spitting image of her daddy. The only thing she got from me is her eyes (which is what she gets the most compliments on anyway, lol).

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While my son has more of a sensitive side, she’s tough. Her father is already talking about buying her boxing gloves and teaching her how to throw a punch. Just the other day, she hit her forehead on the hard floor and didn’t make a peep. She looked at me for a second, I told her she was good, and she went about her playing. The only time she cries is when she’s hungry and doesn’t want to nap.

The funny thing is with her being so tough, she’s my teeny little thing too. Tiny and fierce. Complete opposite from her brother, who I think is constantly growing. She’s my little 15 pound princess at 10 months! When she was born she was 6lbs 15oz, which was actually heavier then her brother, but they are definitely opposite. To this day she still fits in 6 months clothes. She still swims in 9 months. But hey, I can’t complain, she isn’t constantly growing out of clothes and she is developing perfectly! Plus she’s a little piggy, so I don’t know where the weight goes.

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She’s now waving and saying “Hi” and “Buh Bye”, she has “Mama” and “Dada” down. She’s just about standing on her own. She loves to dance and play with her brother (Maroon 5 is a favorite of hers). She gets into EVERYTHING, of course. She has her diva moments for sure. When you put her somewhere she doesn’t want to be, the legs starts flying and the whining starts, and you bet she gets her way, every single time (especially from daddy, he’s wrapped around her finger). She will scream until she has someone’s attention, then when she does, she’ll just wave hi for a good minute. She smiles at everyone and makes sure she has a babbling conversation with everyone she sees.

She knows she’s spoiled. When it’s bedtime, she refuses to fall asleep on her own. She likes mommy or daddies arms. She’ll sit up in her rocker and try to have a full conversation with you in baby talk. It’s the funniest thing, I swear in her mind, I truly believe she honestly knows what she’s saying. She cracks us up. She knows how to hold her bottle, but would much rather prefer if mommy holds it so she can play with her hair. She’s too cool to sit in a shopping cart regularly. She has to stand and see what’s going on. She’s seriously a sassy one.

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My girl refuses to nap. She always has to know what’s going on. She thinks she’s going to miss something. She also gives the best open mouthed slobber kisses. I love every single one of them! She’s the best daughter and little sister we could ask for. Sometimes I can’t help but brag a little.

She’s going to be a handful when she’s older. I hope daddy is ready. I can see it now, she’s going to want the car all the time. She’s going to want to always go out with her friends. She’s going to break curfew, she’s going to ask for money to go shopping. She’s going to be just like mommy was, hehe. That’s why I’m preparing my husband now, giving him fair warning that I was a wild one, so she might be too.

All I know is when she’s a teenager (and this goes for my son too), she’s going to be raised right to where she knows right from wrong. Exactly how her father and I were raised. I knew my limits. I knew if I did something wrong, my parents would beat my ass. You bet we’re going to do the same, to both kids. My kids will know discipline and respect. No doubt in my mind they will treat others the way they want to be treated.

But seriously though, I can’t even think about the teenage years yet. I want to keep them little forever! Soon enough she’ll be one, so I’m cherishing each month as it comes. Come to think about it, I need to start planning her birthday party. Of course it’s themed, but I’ll keep that a secret right now.

Happy 10 Months Liliana Marie.

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Slow Cooker Shrimp Scampi

So I am the Queen of the slow cooker when it comes to being a mom of two. I don’t know about you, but it’s such a great feeling to be able to get other crap done while dinner cooks. Plus, trying to cook a meal with a toddler running around like a maniac & a ten month old who wants to get into everything, is quite difficult. So tonight I tried something new, shrimp scampi. Of course just about all of my ideas are Pinterest inspired but I just had to share this recipe with ya’ll because it was freaking delicious, and super simple!

All you need is…

  • One package spaghetti (optional, I used thin)
  • 1lb of raw jumbo shrimp (I left my tail on)
  • 1/4 cup of chicken broth
  • 2 tablespoons of olive oil (I used extra virgin)
  • 2 tablespoons of butter
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 2 tablespoons parsley (I just used dry)
  • 1/2 fresh squeezed lemon
  • Salt and pepper to taste

First, peel your shrimp, but leave the tails on for flavor.

Add the chicken broth, olive oil, butter (I chopped mine into smaller pieces), garlic, and parsley into the slow cooker and mix a little. Then add the shrimp and squeezed half of the lemon over it all, then mixed it up a little more.

I put my shrimp on low for about 2 1/2 hours. I was also told you can put it on high for 1 1/2 hours if you want to get it done quicker, but I had some time so I chose the low option.

When your shrimp is almost finished, you’ll want to boil up your spaghetti, and drain. Pour the shrimp and juices on top of the spaghetti, or even eat the shrimp plain without the pasta.

I added a little more lemon juice over the finished plate along with some parmesan cheese and dug in! It’s so simple yet so delicious.

I think the best part about this recipe is you can choose healthier options to make it even lighter. Such as reduced sodium (or fat free) broth, light butter, and some extra virgin olive oil. You could even swap out regular spaghetti for whole grain, or just leave it out completely so you don’t have the added carbs.

If you have some extra shrimp, you can whip up some shrimp salad like I did! All I used is

  • 1/4 cup of mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon of fresh lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon of Old Bay (I always add a ton more because I love it)
  • 1/2 teaspoon of onion powder

I sprinkled a little bit of parsley in there. You can also add celery or replace the onion powder with actual chopped onions, but I didn’t have it this time around.

I hope you enjoy, because I did 😉

Being A Pit Bull Mom w/ Two Little Ones

So I wanted to get away from the Christmas vibes for a second and talk about my pups.

There is always so much bad news going around about babies and pit bulls together. I get it, they have a bad name, but my question is, have you ever owned one while having little ones in the house? Because mine are amazing with both of my children, so I’m not sure why everyone talks down about them. Maybe I can be wrong, and I somehow, magically got lucky with the only two good ones on the planet but who knows. I just want to express some positive information on these loving pups, and tell you my story of being a mom with pit bulls around my babies. I’m very compassionate about this subject, because I despise the fact that my babies get disrespected just because of their breed.

When I first met my husband, the two dogs were his. There’s Keo, our 8-year-old pure Blue Pit who is the most loyal and protective dog I’ve ever met, it’s amazing how smart he is. He’s always alert and knows what’s going on 24/7. Any bad vibes going on around us, he’ll be sure to make it known. Then there is Ripken, our 6-year-old rescue. I’m pretty sure he has some boxer in him, but he is our lover, he loves to cuddle and sleep. He’ll sleep right on your chest and stay there all night long as long as he’s under a blanket. He’s scared of everything under the moon, but my boy can catch a bird like it’s nothing, then bring it to you as a gift.

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My son was a little over a year old when he met the dogs, and I do admit I was nervous bringing him over there. Slightly because they were “pit bulls” and all I knew at first was the stories you heard all around you, and how terrible and harmful they were with kids, but it was mainly because they were never really around young children before. I firmly believe that the only stories that news stations or other sources want to put out about dog bites involve pit bulls, because it grabs the attention of viewers the most. It just gives them another reason to keep talking bad about the breed. I’ve worked in Urgent Care facilities where people have come in for dog bites, and guess what, they weren’t pit bulls, not one! You don’t see those going around, do ya? Some of those bites were brutal too. So anyway, about a few hours into the first encounter with Kyle, I had no worries in the world, the nerves were gone. Those dogs adored him and I could tell Kyle loved them back. All they wanted to do was play with him, sit by his side, and cuddle. Not one growl or sign of aggression what so ever.

Above was the first day they met.

From that day on Kyle and the dogs were inseparable. Keo is the most protective dog towards him. When Kyle was younger, Keo would block steps to keep him from falling, he’d walk right next to him just in case he fell over, if he bumped his head he would lick him until Kyle felt better. Even with me, he doesn’t leave my side. No matter where I’m sleeping he’s right next to me. If I’m rocking the baby at night, he’s right next to the rocker. Even when I’m in the shower, he’s lying on that floor. To this day Keo never goes a minute without making sure Kyle is okay. If he’s in his room playing, he’ll make sure he runs in there every few minutes just to make sure everything is good. If Kyle is playing outside, Keo will cry until he’s out there with him or he’ll stare through the window and never look away. Just the other night, we didn’t hear Kyle crying in his room, and Keo licked my husbands face until he woke up. It’s amazing how intelligent these dogs are. Ripken is probably Kyle’s best friend. They lay together, read together, even wear clothes together (pictured below). He lets Kyle do anything to him, and he just sits there and enjoys it. Every night he’ll jump up in Kyle’s bed and want to sleep with him. He never wants to leave his side either.

Then Liliana was born. They were never around an infant before so I was little curious on how they would react. I wasn’t sure how jealous they would feel, because they were definitely used to being the babies. Before I came into my husband’s life, it was only him & the dogs. There were a few things I made sure to do before the baby came home, and it really seemed to work..

  • Play baby noises before the baby is actually here, especially a baby crying
  • Put them in the nursery a lot to get used to the scent
  • Have them smell the new baby detergent you use
  • Have someone bring a blanket home from the hospital so they can smell it before the baby arrives
  • Give them a little extra attention so nobody feels jealous, such as extra walks
  • Let them sniff the baby when they arrive
  • Never show negativity around they baby, so they see them as a positive addition. (Which of course they are!)

When she first came home they absolutely loved her, and still do as she grows. Honestly Keo was scared to go around her at first. She was so little and fragile, he didn’t want to do anything to disturb her. He did start laying by her side though when she slept, and when she cried he’d go up, give her a teeny lick and walk away. Ripken was all about her when she came home. He always wanted to kiss her or lay his head right on her feet while I fed her. He was already the biggest cuddle bug ever, so she was someone new to lay with. These dogs wouldn’t hurt these kids, they live in their home, they are family. I don’t just have two kids, I have four.

Overall, I am a firm believer that ANY dog could potentially do harm to a child. It’s their instinct, they are dogs. They all have similarities. I’ve heard stories of someone getting bit by a dog as small as a chihuahua. You obviously never want to leave a baby alone with any dog, no matter how big or how small. You never know. I just disagree with the fact that all pit bulls are harmful, and I wanted to show a little positive outlook on the breed, because in my eyes they are amazing. They are loving, protective, compassionate dogs. They were even called Nanny dogs back in the day.. I’m pretty sure that shows something right there. My boys do not deserve to be treated bad just because of their breed. People have even walked away from me while I was walking them in my neighborhood. All these dogs would do is lick you to death. I have no regrets with raising my children around Pit Bulls, and I probably will continue for years to come.

Weekend One of Holiday Adventures

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As I was explaining in the previous post, the holiday season is my favorite time of the year, and I always want it to go perfectly smooth and as planned. I still don’t know why I think that’s possible as a mom with two kids, but I always want to think positive. But of course, our first weekend of festivities didn’t go completely as planned, but it was one of best times I’ve had in a long time.

Saturday was the first-time baking cookies with my mom and daughter. I can’t tell you how long I’ve waited for this moment. Of course, my son has been an amazing helper for the past few years, but baking with my daughter really brought back memories of when I baked with my mom and grandmother. Even to this day we use my grandmother’s recipes, and I wouldn’t change a thing about it, those cookies are freaking delicious. I’m so happy my family is so close, that we can keep this tradition going. We’ve had the cooking baking planned for weeks, so I had this day all ready to go. I was going to have my daughter “attempt” to help (yes at only nine months old). I was going to get all kinds of pictures with her “helping” my mom and I, listen to a bunch of Christmas music, cook a crap load of cookies, put them in cute little holiday bins and of course sneak in some cookie dough eating.

Yeah… that didn’t happen. Little miss Liliana just wanted to cry when mommy wasn’t holding her, cartoons were all that kept her calm so that canceled the Christmas music, didn’t get one photo of her “helping” because we all know at nine months old… she didn’t, and to top it all off, my girl blew out her diaper like no tomorrow. It totally called for a complete tub clean. She gets that from her daddy. We did make a boat load of cookies, so my father, husband, and son will be happy campers for a few weeks because these cookies are delicious! Honestly, I had no clue how serious cooking baking was in my household. We had two Kitchen Aid mixers going, non-stop pans going in and out of the oven, putting them on the cooling rack. It’s no joke. I guess when I was younger, I just did all the cookie dough eating. All I know, is when my husband and I build our new home, we are getting a massive kitchen with a double oven. It’s a must.

As the cookie baking came to an end, I realized nothing I had planned happened. I was also asked “Why were you so worried about her helping, she’s only nine months old, she won’t remember”. That’s probably something you shouldn’t say to a mom. Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t give a crap how old my kids are, these are memories! Memories that I want to cherish forever. It’s traditions I want to start with my kids. It’s something this mom wants to do. I don’t care if they are two days old, two years old, or even twenty years old, my kids are going to be my little helpers even if they don’t remember a damn thing! One day they might not want to do these traditions with me, so I’m going to cherish it as long as I freakin’ can! And although Lilly didn’t do anything when it came to cookie baking, she was there, she watched us make the cookies and she even ate a bunch. So, I will take it.

This was also the first weekend Liliana met Santa, and she didn’t cry…yet. He comes around my parent’s neighborhood on his sleigh every year, guided by community firetrucks. It’s an enjoyable time that my son has been doing ever since he was a baby and this year we finally had our girl here to join. This is probably one of the top things my mom enjoys doing with her grand kids. So, I texted our best friends (also Lilly’s godparents), and my brother and sister in law who have my wonderful niece and nephew, and I told them all to come down so the kids can see Santa together. My brother being the best, brought my mom, sister in law, best friend and I some Prosecco to drink, he knows us all too well. We love our wine, and our gossip. The girls chatted, guys watched football, and the kids played.

Around 5PM we started hearing the sirens of the firetrucks and the kiddos knew Santa was coming. So, we bundled them up, headed down the driveway and waited for Santa to come. We waited, and waited, and waited… in the freezing cold. To pass the time as Santa went down the other streets of the neighborhood, I was finally able to play some Christmas music after listening to cartoons most of the day. We danced at the end of the driveway, ate some food, drank our wine, took pictures, raced with the kids, I even heard my ten-year-old nephew rap the entire song of Ice Ice Baby. Probably the best thing I’ve heard all day, he killed it. The guys walked up and watched football to keep warm, but us moms stayed out in that cold with those kids. When it comes to making the kids happy, I swear us moms turn bionic. We can handle anything. Maybe with a little added wine, but that’s our little secret.

 Santa didn’t come down my parent’s street until almost 10PM….

FIVE HOURS we waited for Santa, FIVE. We were freezing, the kids were cranky, the parents were exhausted, but we stuck it out. We were minutes from giving up. Actually, let me rephrase that… the dads were minutes from giving up. Us moms were determined to have our babies see Santa. Even if that meant sitting in the cold for another hour or tracking Santa down in the car, stopping in front of the firetrucks, blocking the road, pushing everyone out of the way, and putting our kids on Santa’s lap ourselves. No shame in my mommin’ game. You don’t mess with a determined mother, we’ll do anything to see our kids smile. I’m afraid of when my kids go to school and they tell me they got bullied, mama won’t back down from telling a kid to back off, like I said, no shame. You don’t upset my babies.

Anyway, back to my evening, the result of all that waiting, was that one picture posted above. One single picture, of all four of the kids together with Santa. That might just be a picture to some people, but that’s everything to me. It made every single minute of waiting worth it. Having the cousins together and being with my family is by far the best feeling in the world. We laughed, we sang, we joked around and the kids loved being together. It’s not often we get all the four cousins together, but it’s the absolute best time. My family knows how to have an enjoyable time, no matter how crazy we are. These are the memories I live for. No matter how much of a sh*t show it is to get to the end the day, no matter how much anxiety I get, or how screwed up my “perfectly planned” day was, I always sit back and think “this day was awesome”. You know why? My kids were part of it. They were with me, all day, and no matter how much of a crazy day I thought it was, they thought it was an amazing day.

You always should make the best out of every day because in your kids eyes every day is the best when they are with mommy, daddy, and people they love. Something about your day may be a disaster, but to them it was the best part. Of course, those five hours of waiting for Santa were unexpected and completely freezing freakin’ cold, but they saw it as more time to play with their cousins, they absolutely loved it (plus it made them extra exhausted, so they fell right asleep… mom win.) That’s why you make the best out of every moment no matter how exhausting it is.

Another weekend come and gone, and more memories made. Mommy life is the best life.

December.. Already?

Seriously though, it’s already December? My son is going to be four in 10 days, and my daughter is two months away from a year old… I can’t handle it. I’m pretty sure December is one of the most stressful yet rewarding months for us moms. From the gift shopping, cookie baking, hiding gifts, wrapping, decorating. I’m pretty sure this is the month where I consume the most wine. I’m that mom who wants everything to be perfect during the holiday season. I want my kids to have every gift they want, I want the tree to look perfect, I want the lights hung evenly in the front of the house. I drive my husband insane. I’m sure my stress, makes him even more stressed. Good thing he’s not home with me all day or he’d probably think I’m even crazier then he already thinks I am.

Why I stress over having the perfect Christmas, especially with two small children? Who freakin’ knows. Just the other day, Kyle broke two of my husband’s authentic Irish ornaments he received from his grandparents, which are irreplaceable. I also tried hanging up the lights outside by myself to save my husband some work and somehow I managed to completely shut off the power that runs to the outside of our house. My son loves running upstairs to my room, and I constantly run up the steps like a mad man to make sure the closet door with all the toys is closed, all while Lilly wants to grab every ornament off the tree. Also, if my son says he wants one more thing he sees on TV, I’m pretty sure I’m going to rip the TV off the wall! The Cunningham household is an adventurous time!

I don’t even want to get started on never having a clue what to get family members. For some reason, us moms are the only ones who go crazy picking out the perfect gifts. You won’t ever see my husband step inside a store to holiday shop. That’s okay though, in some weird, stressful way I get joy out of the madness. As for gifts, all the littles ones in my family already have it all. It makes it nearly impossible to find something. As for the kid’s grandparents, their entire houses are going to be covered with “I love grandma and I love grand pop” things before the kids are teenagers, because I’m terrible at thinking of clever ideas (Please comment some idea’s if you have some!). Then of course, you have my husband who refuses to tell me what he would like and says he doesn’t want anything. You ask what I want? Wine… I want wine, and to sleep in until noon with no interruptions. A mom can dream, right?

I’m excited yet nervous to see how pictures with Santa will turn out this year. If Kyle is scared of something or someone, he will make it known, probably throughout the entire mall. I guess screaming “NO” at the top of his lung and kicking makes everything better… but he did pretty well last year so fingers crossed for the same. I’m pretty sure my little Lilly is going to freak out. Hopefully not since her brother will be right there beside her, and she absolutely adores him. Then us mom’s have to stand behind the camera, shake some toys, be obnoxious, baby talk the kids just so they smile. I have no problem making a fool of myself. Mama wants to good photo!

In the end though, after all the crazy store lines, the late nights wrapping gifts, the huge electric bill from all the lights, the Santa pictures, on Christmas Day when my kids’ faces light up when they come out of their rooms, it is one hundred percent worth it. It makes me love all the madness, and I’ll continue to love the madness and stress for years to come. I seriously love being a mom during the holiday season. It’s one of the best feelings ever, and I look forward to it every single year.

The Start Of My Weight Loss Journey.

One topic that I’m going to share a lot about is my weight loss journey. I am nowhere near finished from where I started and I definitely have my moments where I slack off (trust me, I’m eating a cookie as I write this, but it’s balance, right?). So, I wanted to let know you all know how it all began, and I hope you’ll continue to follow along.
I was never the skinny girl growing up. I had some meat on my bones, and I still do to this day. I don’t think these thighs are going anywhere. More toned? Yes. They will never be teeny though. It’s so funny how in high school you would always think you were huge. Now, looking back, you’d kill to have that body again. So why not just go for it?
About a year before I got pregnant I really let go of myself. I ate out constantly and drank alcohol quite often. I had no responsibilities, that’s what everyone my age was doing. I knew I was overweight but I never made an effort to change anything about it. I just figured wearing dark clothes and dolling my self up would hide it well enough. Then I got pregnant, and that made the weight gain even worse.
I used my first pregnancy as an excuse to eat as much as I wanted, whenever I wanted. Fast food multiple times a day, sweets and chips every few hours. I just figured it was good to feed the baby. Then at about 7-8 months into my pregnancy, I started getting excruciating back pain, to where my legs would give out on me and go numb. I could barely walk at times, and all I would do was lay there. I just figured once I had my son, the pain would go away and boy was I wrong. After giving birth, I still couldn’t walk sometimes, my legs would still go numb, the pain would radiate all the way to my toes, I’d almost drop my baby at times while laying him into his crib. Finally, I decided to seek some help from a pain management specialist to see what was going on. So of course the first course of action was to get a x-ray. The doctor called me a day or so later, and pretty much told me I needed surgery, major back surgery… at 22?! There was no way I was going through that. I had a 4 month old that I needed to take care of. I couldn’t be out of commission for 3 months to heal while I had an infant. So I tried anything possible. I went through physical therapy, back injections, I was even offered narcotics to numb the pain but I refused. I never really considered my weight to be part of the issue, so I continued my unhealthy eating and lack of exercise. I guess it was somewhat of a comforting thing since I was in so much pain.
In August 2014, about a week into starting my new job (before my sahm days now) and dealing with this pain for months (I was also probably my heaviest I’ve ever been), I went to use the bathroom and noticed I was loosing control of my bladder (gross, I know) and my legs went completely numb every time I sat down. I knew that wasn’t normal, so off to the hospital I went. They immediately admitted me and told me I needed an MRI immediately (which didn’t happen). Nervously waiting all night long, they decided that they were going to transfer me to another hospital since they wouldn’t have the proper doctors on sight, and I could get an MRI a lot sooner.
Let me tell you that was the most painful ambulance ride I’ve ever been on. If anyone knows the streets in Baltimore City, they aren’t the smoothest, and laying flat on my back on a stretcher didn’t help. Once I received my MRI, the surgeon came up to my room an hour or so later informing me that my back was as bad as an elderly person and that I needed surgery almost immediately or I’m going to lose complete control of my bowels, permanently. I couldn’t believe was I was hearing. Once again, I now had an 8 month old that I needed to care for, what was I suppose to do!? They told me I wouldn’t be able to bend, lift, or twist for 3 months. No holding my son, no helping him learn to walk, nothing. I was devastated, but I had to do it. The end result would be so much more worth it. I’d be able to play with my son with no pain.
Two days later, on a Saturday morning, bright and early I went back for my surgery. I had to have a laminectomy and discectomy of my L4-L5, L5-S1 vertebrae. It was a success (obviously, I’m still here!), and after five days later, I was able to come home and start my recovery. I will never forget the few words my doctor said to me right before I left. “If you get in shape and keep unnecessary weight off, you shouldn’t have to get a spinal fusion before your 30.” Two major back surgeries before 30!? Yeah, I’ll pass.
And that’s what started it all…
Once I was fully recovered, my first big outing was a wedding (pictured above). I found a cute dress, some boots, dolled my self up in makeup and was ready to go and I had the best time. Until, I looked back at the photos the next morning. I was huge, I looked disgusting, and for once I hated the way I looked. Those words my provider told me ran though my mind, and I was ready for a change.
I started by running in place while my son took a bath, or when he was playing in his pack and play. I had NO idea where to start with exercising, but as long as I was sweating, I felt some source of success. Then I started added weight training, then actual running, and man did I feel good. I cut out my fatty foods, chose lighter options, and really learned to cook at home for myself. I was making meals every night. Different flavors of chicken, healthy cauliflower sides instead of potatoes. I was so proud of myself. Pinterest was my life saver. I researched everything on there.
When I posted my first “Transformation Tuesday” post, everyone asked me what diet I was doing or what products I was taking. All I did for about 9 months straight was exercise until I couldn’t anymore and eat clean. That was is. Nothing special, nothing out of the ordinary. It’s something everyone could do if they put their mind to it. There was no secrets.
I was almost 50 lbs down, and still am to this day and I feel on top of the world. My back is stronger then ever. I went through a second pregnancy with no issues. I didn’t use my baby as an excuse to eat, or to be lazy. I still chased around my toddler as much as I did before becoming pregnant with my princess.
I’m still a long way from where I want to be, and I’m going to continue to post my weight loss journey on here, that’s why I thought it was necessary to tell you all why I started. Anything is possible if you put your mind too it, and I hope you all continues to follow this journey with me and motivate me along the way.
Please like and share my stories! I would love to hear your comments.

The Beginning Of A Blog

AND SO IT BEGINS, THE BEGINNING OF A BLOG. RANDOMLY, AROUND 6 THIS MORNING AS I WAS FEEDING MY DAUGHTER, I DECIDED WHY NOT START UP A BLOG. I’M A MOM, WHO DEFINITELY LIKES TO EXPRESS HOW SHE FEELS. WHETHER IT’S MY PERSONAL REVIEW OF A PRODUCT, A NEW MEAL I TRIED, A CRAFT I DID WITH MY KIDS, A NEW EXERCISE ROUTINE, OR JUST TO VENT OR TALK ABOUT HOW MY DAY WENT. I MIGHT AS WELL TYPE IT UP AND SHARE IT INSTEAD OF TALKING MY HUSBANDS EAR OFF AFTER HIS LONG DAY AT WORK. I STAY AT HOME WITH MY KIDS ALL DAY, SO I HAVE A LOT OF THINGS TO SHARE AND A LOT OF THOUGHTS THAT RUN THROUGH MY MIND.

I’M A MOTHER OF TWO. MY THREE (ALMOST FOUR) YEAR OLD BOY, WHO’S MIND IS AN ADVENTURE. HE DOESN’T STOP FROM SUN UP TO SUN DOWN. HE’S A WILD ONE WITH A KILLER IMAGINATION. I PERSONALLY THINK HE’LL GROW UP AND BE AN ARCHITECT OR ENGINEER. HE LOVES DESIGNING AND BUILDING WITH ALMOST ANY TOY HE HAS, HE’S SO CREATIVE IT BLOWS MY OWN MIND. HE ALSO HAS A SOFT SENSITIVE SIDE, AND HE IS SUCH A MAMA’S BOY, I JUST LOVE IT. THEN THERE IS MY PRINCESS, MY NINE MONTH OLD. SHE’S A LITTLE FIRECRACKER ALREADY. SHE HAS A SASSY PERSONALITY LIKE HER MAMA AND SHE IS DEFINITELY GOING TO BE A HANDFUL. I THINK SHE’S GOING TO BE MY TOUGH ONE, THE ONE WHO WILL FALL, SCRAPE UP HER KNEES AND KEEP ON GOING WITHOUT SHEDDING A TEAR. SHE ALREADY TORMENTS HER BROTHER AND THINKS IT’S THE FUNNIEST THING. SHE’S ALSO A BIG DADDY’S GIRL, SO WE KNOW WHAT THAT MEANS.. SPOILED FROM DAY ONE.

I’VE BEEN MARRIED TO MY HUSBAND FOR A LITTLE OVER A YEAR NOW, AND I COULDN’T ASK FOR A BETTER MAN. HE’S THE MONEY MAKER, THE GO GETTER. HE’LL DO ANYTHING TO KEEP HIS FAMILY HAPPY. HE WORKS LONG EXHAUSTING DAYS, BUT STILL HAS TIME FOR THE KIDDOS EVERY SINGLE NIGHT (HENCE WHY I DON’T WANT TO TALK TO HIS HEAD OFF WITH MY DAILY THOUGHTS & IDEAS). I’LL LET HIM HAVE THAT TIME WITH THE KIDS, AND IF HE WANTS TO READ MY POSTS, HE’S MORE THEN WELCOME TOO. I’M ALSO A FUR MAMA TO MY TWO PIT BULLS. THEY ARE THE MOST LOVING PUPS TO MY KIDS AND EVEN MYSELF. I’M SURE YOU’LL HEAR A LOT OF STORIES ABOUT THEM TWO AND THE KIDS. THEY ARE INSEPARABLE.

SO, HERE GOES NOTHING. HOPEFULLY EVERYONE ENJOYS WHAT I HAVE TO SAY AND I CAN’T WAIT TO GET ALL MY THOUGHTS AND FEELINGS OUT THERE SO HOPEFULLY I CAN CONNECT WITH OTHERS WITH SIMILARITIES OR EVEN LEARN SOME NEW THINGS! I’M VERY EXCITED TO FINALLY BE ABLE TO SAY “I’M GOING TO BLOG ABOUT IT”.