Tag Archives: Mom

Monthly Must-Haves [January]

I wanted to start a new monthly series sharing some of my current favorite things. I love product recommendations because I can spend waaayy too long in the aisle or on Amazon trying to decide what to get. I would rather someone just tell me! So here are some things I am loving this month:

monthly must-haves january

Stress Away – Not sure if this makes me any less stressed or the kids any calmer, but I LOVE the smell of this. Find an oils lady! I have one I can refer you to if you don’t know anyone!

stressaway

Thieves – We have been running this through the diffuser like crazy.  I am not convinced that it does much for preventing illnesses, but people say it works so I guess it can’t hurt?? Get with your oil lady, or I can give you the name of mine!

thieves

Diffuser – We have a diffuser in each bedroom and one in the main living room. I am not partial to any certain one that we have, but I do like these that have the lights for the girls’ rooms. I got all of these from Amazon, decently priced, and they all work the same!

diffuserdiffuser2    diffuser3

Osmo – This was a Christmas gift for the kids, and it has added an all new use for the ipad.  They are playing and learning without realizing how much work they’re actually doing.  It’s a great addition to inside winter activities. I will do another in-depth post on this soon!

osmo

3minutemiracle   3-Minute Miracle – Our kids’ hair is SO tangly and unmanageable. I saw this at Walmart and thought we’d give it a shot. They use it once a week and I can notice a difference! Jadyn and Breckyn have thin, wavy hair so it’s always frizzy and tangly, but this helps make it smooth.

growshampoo Hair Lengthening Shampoo – We just started using this because Jadyn and Breckyn’s hair never seems to grow.  I can’t say we’ve noticed any difference yet, but it may be too soon. I’ll report back later on this!

Meal Replacement Shake – Look, I can’t get up early during the winter to save my life because of the darkness.  I barely have time to get the kids and myself ready, let alone eat breakfast.  This is my go-to breakfast every weekday morning. I mix it up, stick it in the freezer, then drink it on the way to work. 16g of protein keeps me full until lunch AND it has load of vitamins.

shake

Old Navy 7/8 Leggings – I ordered these online and crossed my fingers that they fit. Short girl problems means full-length workout leggings are scrunched at the bottom.  These fit perfectly!! They’re supposed to be a little shorter, above the ankle but for short girls, they work for full-length leggings! Also – I prefer the mid-rise in these…high rise are just too high!

leggings

lotionAveeno Lotion – As a teacher, I wash my hands or use sanitizer more times than I can count, leaving my hands dry and cracked. I keep this at school and put it on often.

lotion2Shower Lotion – I tried this because I received a sample from a Walmart Beauty box. At first, it’s kind of weird because you put the lotion on while you are still wet, but you get used to it and it definitely helps!

drops   Pink Eye Drops – This month, my whole family was sick for a week with influenza and then I ended up with pink eye somehow! We had been to the doctor so many times that I wasn’t about to go back. John picked this up and surprisingly, it cleared up my pink eye! My daughter got pink eye the next week, and after 3 doses of this, hers cleared up as well!

How to Create A Workout Space At Home

You don’t need a gym membership, a fancy workout room, or a ton of equipment to work out at home. I had a gym membership once at Snap Fitness before I had kids, and again at a women’s only gym for about 6 months last year. Working out at home is so much more convenient for me for obvious reasons.  Below you will find my setup and the equipment that I use.

We have an unfinished basement, which is my workout space. I picked one of the rooms in the back of the basement. It has some toys in it, and it’s next to the room the girls play “school” in. The one next to that has a bunch of big furniture boxes they make forts with. These things keep them occupied while I work out!

Here is my little corner with all of my supplies….

These weights are my favorite Amazon purchase! They are the newest, updated version of the weights I used to have. I ordered them after one of the plates slipped out and broke my toe. More on that another time.  (Also: my yoga mat. However, I don’t use it much because we have carpet and rugs downstairs.)

Next to my weights is a small shelf. On top I keep the baby monitor and my weight progress sheet. I write down the exercise and how much I’m lifting so I make sure I’m trying to progress to a heavier weight. I will be sharing a downloadable version of it soon!

The next shelf has workout guides that I have purchased and printed off.

Below that is my bucket of extras – attachments for resistance bands and my loop bands. I use the loops bands to add difficulty to squats, side steps, etc.

On the bottom, I keep 2 extra plates from the old weight set and my kettlebell. Right now, I only have an 8 pounder, but I may upgrade soon! This one is good for swings, but it’s too light for rows, extensions, upright rows, etc.

A must for working out at home is resistance bands. You can do so many more exercises that are normally gym-based moves if you have a set of resistance bands. I have an attachment that I can put through the door to hold it, but I just loop it around one of the boards.

As for cardio – we DO have a 9-year-old elliptical – that has been broken for 4 years, so that’s not helping much. What I do is walk/run whenever it’s nice enough out and I have John home with the girls. I also do a lot of HIIT training – jumping jacks, high knees, burpees, plank jacks, and so on.

There you have it!  All of this equipment together cost about $350 – a year gym membership costs much more than that! It’s so worth it to me because I don’t have to drive there and back, leave my house when it’s cold, work around a group class schedule, or pay extra for child care. I can work out with the baby napping or playing near me. I can use this equipment anywhere that the kids are – I’ve taken it upstairs, outside, and the garage.

Don’t let not having a gym membership be an excuse for not working out!

14 Weird Things About PostPartum Recovery

When you’re pregnant, everyone tells you horror stories about pregnancy and labor. There isn’t much conversation about postpartum recovery, though. Sure, your best friend might mention a few things but not many people openly talk about the strange things that happen to your body after the baby is home with you.

You can get shingles.  I know you’re probably thinking Only old people get shingles, Megan, get real.”  Yeah, I thought that too.  I had shingles after not only one, but TWO of my children.

Breastfeeding can cause neck, back, and shoulder pain.  All that time stuck in the same position several times a day leads to some weird kinks and aches.

You might have to sit on a pillow. Tears and stitches, need I say more?

You will cry over stupid stuff.  My mom stayed with us for a few days after my firstborn, and they day she left I took a bath and bawled like a baby.  After my 4th child, my husband and I had a tiff about something small (I don’t even remember now), and I sat on the toilet and sobbed.

You will get very little sleep.  People definitely tell you this, but you don’t realize how little you get until you are feeding a baby around the clock.  Amazingly, you can be awake in an instant and be pretty functional the next day.

You will be leaky, very leaky.  Who knew your body could excrete fluids just from thinking about your baby??

You may wake up soaked in sweat the first couple of days after birth. After all 4 babies, I had night sweats and even had to change the sheets in the middle of the night!

You will still look pregnant. It varies per woman and number of pregnancies. After my fourth, I looked 5 months pregnant for a week and gradually less pregnant as the weeks went on.

Your ab muscles can separate. It’s called Diastatis Recti and you will need to do exercises to close the gap.

You will have a line down your stomach for a very long time. I’m 5 months postpartum and still have that dang brown line.

Your hair will fall out in clumps. This started for me right around 4 months postpartum. My hair was so full and didn’t shed much during pregnancy, but the handfuls of hair that I’m pulling out daily (okay, morning and night!) is disgusting!

You will be super hungry from breastfeeding….like, ravenous. I may have traveled to the kitchen several times after a 2am feeding to eat banana bread, Pop Tarts, monster cookies, and granola bars.

Most likely, the weight won’t “fall right off” from nursing.  You hear it all the time – women who weigh less than they did pre-pregnancy because of nursing. Or moms who shed the weight extremely fast and say it was due to breastfeeding.  Don’t be surprised if this doesn’t happen to you! With my first 3, I held on to the last 5 pounds until I quit nursing. With #4, the weight is holding on a looooot longer.

You’ll probably pee yourself. Avoid trampolines, jumping jacks, and sneezing at all costs.