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Thankful For Starting My Day with Baby Smiles

Thankful for starting my day with baby smiles

Wow that title is a mouthful!! When I a thinking about what to write about today, all I could focus on was the smiles that Evie was giving me as she was waiting for me to finish pumping. That is the perfect topic for Thankful Thursday!

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Did you know that the first facial expression a baby has is a smile. Usually they start in the womb and have no meaning. Once a baby smiles because they are happy that is the best feeling in the world.

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The best way to start my day is seeing my baby girl look at me and smile. Evie and I start our day with singing a special good morning song that I made up for her. As soon as I start singing it, the smile on her face is just amazing. That smile is as big as her face and just beautiful. Who knew that someone would smile at the sound of my crappy singing voice?!

Smiles are contagious. Actually, smiles are more contagious than the flu! When someone, young or old, smiles you can’t help but to smile back at them. It takes more effort to not smile back.

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Looking for a promotion at work? Smile more! Studies show that smiling more at work makes an employer more likely to promote you over someone who rarely smiles. This shows that you love what you do and that you have passion for the company you work for. Smiling makes you look more successful at work and in life.

Try to force yourself to smile when you are upset and watch your mood elevate. When you smile it can feel like all your problems melt away for that moment. Use up to 53 muscles to smile so you can bring your mood up, exercise your face and reduce your blood pressure all at the same time!

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No matter where in the world you go, a smile is intercultural. You can look at someone and say hello with a smile, no language interpreter needed! This is because a smile means happiness…. everywhere in the world!

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Smiling Fun Facts:

  1. The average woman smiles 62 times a day
  2. The average man smiles 8 times a day
  3. 63% of women say they look best in photos where their teeth are showing
  4. 99.7% of people say that an attractive smile is an important personal asset
  5. 74% of people believe a bad smile can hurt their chances for a successful career
  6. A dog smiles by wagging their tail
  7. There are 19 different types of smiles!

Take the time to smile today!

 

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Worth It Wednesday

Worth It Wednesday

In my life right now, I am focused on my self-care and working towards a positive life which means eliminating the negativity in my life. Part of that negativity are my Wednesday rant posts. As nice as it is to vent my feeling but when I started to let the venting and negativity take over my life, it was time to work taking the bad out and bring the good in. So, instead of focusing on venting on Wednesdays I am going to focus on ways to bring good things into my life and your life with Worth It Wednesday!

What does Worth It Wednesday mean?

Worth It Wednesday is all about living the life you are worth living. Finding positivity in every aspect of your life. Being grateful for what you have and what you will receive in the future. Holding yourself accountable for what how your thinking, feeling and living your life. Making the necessary changes to make your life the one you want.

My goal for my new Wednesday series is to post ways that help you live your best life. This will include different activities that could help in your journey. As well, I will feature products that will aid in your positive life journey. I am a quote lover, so there will be posts that feature quotes that will enhance your life. I am sure as my journey continues, I will have different themes and posts that I haven’t thought of yet.

I am excited to share my journey with all of you and I hope that these future posts will encourage you to live the life you are worth living because it is worth it to live your best life. Life is too short to belived counting the years.Enjoy the ride and makeamazing memories.Have a great birthday!

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Kind Kids Start At Home

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If you sit back to watch and listen to a group of kids and/or teens, you will be able to pick out the rude, mean kids and kind kids. Week after week, a few parents at the dance studio sit back to watch these kids and how they act to be able to pick out these different kids. The sad thing is that the mean kids outweigh the kind kids. Not only are these kids mean to the other kids but to adults and most of all their parents! This plays right into the big internet controversy this week….

The big internet controversy this week is the episode from the Roseanne reboot where she sticks her granddaughter’s head under the kitchen sink and sprays her with water. (The clip is below if you missed it) Roseanne did this in reaction to the fact her granddaughter, Harris, is acting rude, disrespectful and entitled to everyone around her. This behavior has become common place among kids, tweens and teens which these kids feed off of each other.

 

These kids, no matter their age, will throw a temper tantrum of sorts until the parents allow them to get what they want. This behavior from the parents teaches the mean kids that their bad attitude and behavior is acceptable not only at home but in public and among other people and kids. Since when do parents step tip toe around their kids and show them fear of their temper tantrums?

Now, I will admit that Danyella has her moments. Yes, she is 11 and has learned from other kids that she should be entitled to whatever she wants and shouldn’t have to do anything for it. Boy is she wrong! Currently, we are working on undoing the bad habits her dance classmates have tried to teach her by giving her a chore chart and reward system (check that post out here: Tween Rules and Reward System). She knows that her bad behavior will not be tolerated and taking points away from her earning her New York City trip means it will be even longer before we can go. Plus, for Christmas she received an iPod which is the cause of most her throwing a fit because she doesn’t want to put it down. She will get mean, say nasty things and throw a fit when its time to give up her iPod for either a time limit or bad behavior. With the promise of points being taken away for this behavior, these tantrums have dwindled slowly.

On the other hand, kind kids are started at home with being given boundaries that help shape them into responsible, respectful kids. These parents don’t allow the kids to get away with bad behavior because there are consequences to that type of behavior. Now, I am not talking about the types of discipline in this post but I am saying these kids know that if they behave badly there will be a downfall/consequence to it.

These kind kids are the ones that will welcome a new kid into their friendship circle, open a door for a stranger, share their lunch with a kid that forgot theirs, pick up something someone else dropped and smile when someone looks at them. It is these kids that grow into responsible adults that want to help others. They are the adults that help with charities, listen to their friends talk, help when anyone needs help and smiles with someone looks at them.

Danyella has been writing her affirmations of kind words and her writing prompts are about being kind to herself and others. Plus, I have been teaching her to stand back and watch how these mean kids act when she is around them and think about how they look to others. Then, she was taught to think about whether she wants others to see her act like that and does it benefit her to act like that. Last, I have been teaching her to say something nice to someone everyday because sometimes someone needs to hear kinds words. You never know when someone else is having a bad day and those kind words just helped them feel better.

These are the kind of kids we should be raising today! The kids that learn at home to be kind to others, to be responsible for their obligations and actions and to respect other people, no matter their age or relation to them. Let’s all strive to be the parents that teach our kids to be a Kind Kid and change the world one kind kid at a time!

Teach Kids to be Kind Everyday and watch the world grow in Goodness

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Bacon, Egg and Cheese Muffin Tin Cups with Printable Recipe

Bacon, Egg and Cheese Muffins

Lately, I have been on carb OVERLOAD… the more breads, pasta and sweets fed/fueled my emotions the better I thought I would feel. Well we all know that is far, far from the truth! The carb hangover has been horrible and just fed with more carbs. Let’s just say the weight I have lost from breastfeeding the baby has come back with every delicious carb I eat.

If I am going to change my mindset and emotions, then I need to change my eating habits as well. I need more proteins to keep my energy level up with being on the go, raising an infant and running a business. In the mornings, I just don’t have time to make breakfast so my go to is/was toast with peanut butter or an english muffin but that’s more carbs and I need to stop my carb addiction!

This egg muffin recipe is one that I loved in the past because I would freeze them, heat them in the morning and run out the door. The great thing about this recipe is that you can add anything you want… sausage, bacon, ham, spinach, peppers, onions, really the possibilities are endless and easy!

 

Bacon, Egg and Cheese Muffin Cups

  • Servings: 6-8
  • Difficulty: easy
  • Print

An easy breakfast recipe you can make ahead for your busy week.


Credit: kaella.net

Ingredients

  • 12 eggs
  • 6-7 slices of bacon, cooled and chopped
  • 1 cup shredded cheese of your choice
  • salt and pepper, to liking

Directions

  1. Set over to 350 degrees. Generously spray the muffin tin with spray oil so that the cups come out of the tin easily.
  2. Place one egg in each cup and whisk with a fork, if easier you can do this in a separate bowl and divide among the cups evenly.
  3. Sprinkle the bacon in a cup.
  4. Sprinkle with salt and pepper.
  5. Bake for 20 minutes on bottom rack.
  6. Top each cup with cheese, return to the oven. Bake for another 8-10 minutes.
  7. Allow to cool before taking them out of the tin.
  8. Serve for breakfast, place in the fridge for easy on the go breakfast for the week (heat for 45 seconds in the microwave) or place in a freezer bag, place in the freezer and eat in the future (heat for 1-2 minutes in the microwave.

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Struggling With My Gratitude

Struggling with My Gratitude

With everything that has occurred this year, I have been struggling with my gratitude and thankfulness, hence the many missing Thankful Thursday posts. It has become difficult to be grateful when I am so angry at so many people and at the Universe.

Don’t get me wrong, I am grateful for my kids and supportive family and friends through these difficult times. The problem is that I draw a blank when I think about what I am grateful for in my life. I will find something I am grateful for and then think about what I don’t have or how I got screwed out of something related to this grateful thing, and I am back to being angry again.

This mindset of anger has effected every aspect of my life where I am not striving to be the best I can be. My business has been slow going because I feel like I just run out of time to do anything. Instead of doing what I need to do, my mind wanders and before I know it I have been thinking and engrossing myself for over an hour. Poof that time I had while the baby is sleeping is now gone and I can’t get it back. The rift in my already damaged marriage is just increasing in size because if I can’t control my anger towards things then I can’t be in a good place to work on bridging the gap. Even my poor supportive friends are being neglected because I know that when I speak, all I do is spew negativity so I have just stopped talking at all. The only ones that I have tried to protect from my ungratefulness is my children because no matter what they are my main priority in life and I don’t want them to feel my anger.

This all means that I need to go back to the beginning and work on myself. I need to make working on my self care and self love a priority because dwelling on my anger is only bringing myself and everyone around me down.

My top 5 things to help me work on my self care:

  1. Write and recite daily affirmations
  2. Write 5 things I am grateful for every night, even when I am not feeling grateful
  3. Listen to/Read the Secret and my other go to self care books
  4. Write out my feelings in my journal, even if it is multiple times a day
  5. Give myself time to love myself

In the past, I have gone through these periods which were triggered by a stress factor and in the past few months since Evelynne was born there has been multiple stressors. I know I can’t beat myself up for needing to start over in my self care journey (trust me I have been beating myself up for months now) because I am only human. As humans, we will go forward and have our setbacks but that is what makes us grow mentally, emotionally and spiritually.

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Do you have any tips to get out of your funk and back to self care?

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Loathe Thy Neighbor

Yes, I know that the correct quote from the Bible is Love Thy Neighbor but if you lived near my current neighbor you would loathe them as well… if you continue to read please be prepared for A LOT of swearing because it is What the What Wednesday aka my weekly rant post!

Loathe Thy Neighbor

When you live in an apartment, you have to deal and adjust to living around other people. I have lived in tons of apartments and dealt with all kinds of people. None of them acted like our current downstairs neighbor. This man is off his rocker crazy, weird and attempts to be domineering towards women. (He met the wrong woman to try to dictate anything to, just ask my husband haha!)

When we signed our lease, we made sure that our dog was included because Max is as much a part of our family as the girls are our children. We knew that we would have some adjustment with Max going from living in a single house to an upstairs apartment next to a main road. We bought a bark collar (big waste of over $100!!) to help with the transition because Max LOVES to bark at everything because he is a Plott Hound mix.

First of all,  everytime I see this man, instead of saying hello back to me he starts to bitch about something which usually is about the dog or noise. Doug will walk by him and he is polite and says hello. He sees me and basically gives me shit that our dog barks too much, our dog shits (mind you in the abandoned house next door’s yard) to much, we have to lock the front door (so no one can hear someone knock and we can’t have visitors?!) or an array of other shit. The one that topped them all… he tried to tell me that I have to stay home with the dog more because the dog barking and running around when I am not home is just annoying to them. Oh fucking well dude you live on the first floor of an apartment! Plus, do you think I am happy that your kids are running through the house screaming at midnight waking my 3 month old baby up?? Do I say anything, no because we live in an apartment and we adjust to our surroundings!

When we were doing the walk through of the apartment, our realtor told us that the family downstairs is home all day because they are a homeschooling family. Oh that is cool because so are we and don’t meet many homeschooling families. Well, the kids only go out to play when its getting dark or is dark already and they are unsupervised. Plus, he allows his unsupervised kids to play in the yard next door which is full of crap like wood, shingles, nails and other stuff from the owners trying to fix up the abandoned house. First, if your kids are homeschooled then why are you having them play when its dark and only have an outdoor light to see (or not see) instead of during the day? Second, why are you allowing your kids to play unsupervised next to an intersection of 2 major roads in our area? Third, why in the hell do you allow your kids to play in a yard that is filled with dangerous building materials and then bitch at me that we let our dog poop where your kids play?? Duh, you don’t let your kids play in that yard? (which the owners of the other house know that we walk our dog over there and don’t care)

Next, the yard is supposed to be a shared yard which I was planning on putting a garden in soon. Well that is not going to happen because our yard is the neighbor’s junk heap! I swear this man goes around and collects other people’s shit and dumps it in the yard. There are 3 grills, a rusted out open fire pit (totally illegal in jersey, especially when you have houses only feet from each other, a ton of different chairs (some of them dining room chairs), plus other things that I don’t even know what they are. Oh and the kids have their toys all over the yard (how about teaching them to clean up all the little water balloons they have EVERYWHERE?!) which drives me nuts trying to navigate to just walk to my car. Now I have to figure out creating an indoor herb garden and then create the rest of my garden from pots that I sent on our back steps so that I can have Danyella’s supply of summer tomatoes. So much for “shared” yard….

Brace yourself for this last part… This man loves to stand in his back door and smoke his pot aka marijuana. Having a little brother that struggled with drugs and ultimately lost his life to his struggle, I do NOT want my kids exposed to drugs of any kind. Now, we can’t even walk from my house to my car (or visa versa) without them being exposed to this drug. Now, in New Jersey medical marijuana is legal but this is in a pill or oil form not to smoke so he can’t try to pull the “I have a medical marijuana card” out to justify it. Plus, there are times that I walk into my house and that is all I can smell so I have a candle always burning to mask the smell. I don’t want to be exposed to this and I don’t want my kids to be exposed to this. If he wants to smoke his crap then go do it in his car or in the garage or somewhere we my family doesn’t get affected by his illegal hobby!

This rant is over for now but with 10 months left on our lease, there is no saying what else will happen and what other rant I may need to write out of my system. Thanks for listening to this week’s rant!

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Why I don’t let my kids play on my phone

Why My Kids Don't Play on my Phone

I am not one of those moms that hands my phone over to my kids and let them play games or watch videos on YouTube. I am sure other moms will disagree with this post but this is my personal feelings on letting kids have free reign over my phone…

Imagine having the police show up at your door and you have no idea why. You open the door and the police tell you that they need to check the house to be sure everything is ok. You ask them why. They explain that there was a 911 call that was located at this address. I go and grab Danyella, who was almost 2 years old, and realize that she is the one who called 911 when I allowed her to play with my phone. That was the last time she touched my phone!

There is more reasoning behind my phone ban from my kids besides Danyella accidentally calling the police. I never wanted my kids to grow up thinking they had the right to touch an electronic that cost as much a rent payment. I have enough problems with breaking my own electronics (just ask my brother who had to replace the hard drive in my laptop because I broke it during the move a month ago!) so I don’t need the kids touching it and break something that we don’t have the spare money to replace. Especially when the cost of electronics just increases every year and now to replace my Iphone 7 plus would cost me a $1000 to replace/upgrade to the Iphone X.

Another reason, is that I run my blog and business mainly from my phone. I can’t tell you how many of my blog posts have been written and published from my phone. All of this is possible with the different apps like wordpress, canva and others that help my business and blog running smoothly. Yes, typing is easier on my laptop but when my time is spent outside of the house then my phone is a must. This means kids not touching and breaking my phone is a super must!

Last reason is that they are kids and for generations before these kids were born, kids survived without electronics on the go to play with and keep them occupied. What happened to packing toys, coloring books and snacks to keep kids occupied? This is what I did for Danyella and what I will do for Evie when we are out and about. Even now, I have 2 play mats for Evie which one is kept in the car so I can take it into the dance studio for her to play on. Yes, I have more to pack and take with me but it is keeping her entertained and I will continue to do this until she is old enough for her electronic device.

Danyella has survived for nearly her whole childhood without touching my phone since that day she called 911. This past Christmas, Danyella was given an iPod to take with her in public which she can use as a phone to communicate with my phone since it’s an iPhone, if she is on wifi. She can play games and play on her music apps which I keep a close eye on. If she abuses her privilege of having the iPod then its take away and she has to find other ways, like reading a book to keep herself occupied.

I know that many parents see the convenience of letting kids play on their phones which pulling up their favorite video to keep them quiet and still is easy. On the other hand, teaching my children to respect electronics and how things are a privilege vs a right is a strong value in a world where everyone’s lives revolve around a cellphone and/or other electronics. Let the kids be kids and play with toys and books not your phone. Let Kids be Kids . Let Them Explore, Play and Learn