It’s 4 a.m. and still dark outside when my mother sneaks into my room and tells me to quickly get dressed…it is the infamous day after Thanksgiving – Black Friday! As the oldest of 5 and only girl, I get the privilege of leaving the house before everyone awakes with my mom to meet my grandmother and aunt at Toys ‘R Us where we will shop for my brothers and cousins. After Toys ‘R Us, we will eat an early breakfast at Cracker Barrel before heading to the mall for the rest of the day. With Christmas right around the corner and my mom not being one to plan ahead for such things, this month will be busy and exciting as we spend weekends and late nights preparing for the holidays. I await this time in anxious anticipation as I love to shop!
Kristin is a native Floridian who loves warm weather and sunshine but owns too many scarves and boots. She lives at the World’s Most Famous Beach with her husband, 3 boys and enough animals both warm and cold blooded to make up a zoo. She is a practicing attorney who spends her days working with at-risk and delinquent youth and her nights being a Montessori Mama to her independent, strong willed little humans. On the weekends you can find her at soccer games, chasing her boys at the Beach or cooking for her husband who suffers from Crohn’s disease but is healing with a healthy diet. In her free time, Kristin loves reading and laying by the pool.
From the moment our babies leave the womb we start documenting their milestones. The first smile, the first belly laugh, and the first time they sit up, along with crawling, walking, and potty training… you name it, and whether it’s baby #1 or #4, parents around the world love to celebrate their baby’s accomplishments even more so than their own.
Shopping for a new baby is a daunting task. Just step one foot into any baby store and you are suddenly surrounded with various products from floor to ceiling. And, there are some baby things that might cost a little more, but they cost more for a reason. Not all baby products are created equal. After personally experiencing countless baby products as a team, we’ve put together this list of luxury baby products that are worth the investment. Invest in baby products based on your lifestyle and priorities. When you choose any of these products for your family, you are investing in better safety, in products that keep baby close and promote bonding, in enriching toys, and in products that simply make your life as a parent easier – and we think all of that is worthy of the investment!
When we think of chess, many of us picture old men in the park sitting at tables in the shade playing a game of old. What we don’t necessarily consider is how that game can benefit the daily life of our children. Chess is a strategic skill game that allows our children to develop a multitude of highly sought after skills, can be taught from an early age, and will allow your child to excel both in the classroom and in the real world. Chess opens up a dialogue between young and old, it is a language in and of itself that allows those who can play to find common ground no matter the age or native language of the player. This game is played worldwide amongst avid opponents from across the globe.
Growing up we always heard adults say, “it’s all about respect,” when addressing relationships between children, teens, and young adults with teachers, pastors, police, and parents. But that is not altogether accurate. It is not “all about respect” and it is most certainly not just about respect. Relationships on both a personal and public level are built not only on respect, but on trust, understanding and the consistency of fulfilled expectations. As a firm believer that respect is something which must be earned, when it comes to these other characteristics they are the building blocks of a respectful relationship, thus inherently must come first.
High school is the time when our kids truly begin to test their wings and gain some freedom while still in the safe confines of their parent’s embrace. On the verge of young adulthood with many more freedoms and responsibilities than ever before, this is such a critical period of development, maturity, and decision-making for our teens that we need to set them up for success. As parents, we need to gently direct them, support them, and accept them, regardless of many of the decisions they make. Mistakes made now matter, but hopefully are still correctable with Mom and Dad’s constant love and attention. Soon our children will spread their wings and fly out into a bigger, scarier, and much more competitive world than where we have sheltered them so far. As such, our children need to learn about the past, present, and future, and there is no better way to educate oneself than to read.
Middle school is a tough time for all children. It is an awkward period of pre-teen adolescence that, let’s face it, has even been given an awkward name: the tween years. Pimples, periods, pot, and trying to fit in with your very broadly developing peers encompasses the three years that as parents we fear most. Unfortunately some of the decisions made during these years can make or break your child when it comes to self-esteem, self-confidence, and the ability to withstand peer pressure.
If you’ve been loving our Facebook LIVE bashes and giveaways, well, we’re back for more! In recognition of August being National Breastfeeding Month we are celebrating all the expectant and new moms out there, whether they are welcoming their very first bundle of joy or their last. We will be showcasing some of the hottest new items meant to make your pregnancy, newborn and postpartum experience as easy and enjoyable as possible. From travel systems and sleep solutions to pregnancy and postpartum nutrition and apparel, there is something here for everyone. So, whether you or someone you love is welcoming a new addition, make sure to join us for this fun and fabulous event! Partnering up with our favorite brands, Daily Mom’s Kristin and Jeri will be LIVE this August on Daily Mom’s Facebook page, giving you the details on their favorite items for both Mommy and Baby – which you can now enter to WIN! See all the details below…
If you didn’t tune into our Facebook Live video event, then go ahead and watch the replay now to learn more and see the products in real life – and scroll all the way to the bottom of this post to enter to win something from each of these amazing companies!
And if you shared our LIVE video, RSVP’ed to the event page, and shared the LIVE video on Facebook, you can also gain extra entries – and you’ll want them after reading about all the items that are up for grabs!
If you’ve been loving our Facebook LIVE bashes and giveaways, well, we’re back for more! In recognition of August being National Breastfeeding Month, we are celebrating all the Expectant and New Moms out there whether welcoming their very first bundle of joy or their last. We will be showcasing some of the hottest new items meant to make your pregnancy, newborn, and postpartum experience as easy and enjoyable as possible. From travel systems and sleep solutions to pregnancy and postpartum nutrition and apparel, there is something here for everyone, so whether you or someone you love is welcoming a new addition make sure to join us for this fun and fabulous event! Partnering up with our favorite brands, Daily Mom’s Kristin and Jeri will be LIVE this August on Daily Mom’s Facebook page, giving you the details on their favorite items for both mommy and baby which you can then enter to WIN! See all the details below…
No matter how much I keep hoping these boys will stop growing so fast, each year seems to come and go, flying by faster than the last. As a full-time working mom of three active and energetic boys, the hustle and bustle of getting ready for a new school year has already begun. Between soccer sign-ups, school supply shopping, and a baby on the way, this year is going to be exciting and busier than ever as my oldest enters 2nd grade, my middle child heads to kindergarten, and the youngest begins his adventures into the realm of extracurricular activities… oh yes, not to mention the new addition arriving in February.
Trying to keep track of everyone’s schedule – school and extracurricular activities – while working full-time, making three healthy, organic, and edible meals for five people a day, and getting anywhere on time requires patience, planning, and a lot of preparation. That said, it is always fun and exciting to jump into a new school year watching my boys thrive socially and academically while discovering the joy that comes from learning.
There seems to be a universal misconception out there that every time each one of us has a baby we are automatically ready or wanting to have another. We have all heard the questions…
- “When are you going to have another?”
- “Are you going to get Baby X a little brother or sister?”
- “When are you going to have that boy/girl?”
So the newest kitchen gadget that has become all the rave is the Instant Pot. This amazing machine has likely become popular due to the rise in working women, extracurricular activities for the kids, and basically the decline of the 1950’s housewife who had the luxury of slow cooking a delicious dinner all day. For some of us food lovers, the idea of being able to putter around in a kitchen preparing a meal, sipping on a glass of wine really would be the epitome of enjoyment, but for same said food lovers the reality might be wrangling three kids home from baseball with an hour til bedtime for homework, baths, AND dinner.
With constant specials on Amazon (our online shopping BEST FRIEND), Instant Pot has stepped in to save the day. Unlike the stovetop pressure cookers of old that our mothers guaranteed would blow up our houses, sending us to the hospital, this electric pressure cooker has all sorts of safety mechanisms, bells, and whistles making dinnertime easier than ever.
As the days are getting longer and the kids are up later celebrating the season of summer, it is time for family gatherings, neighborhood barbecues, and eating outdoors. People are dusting off picnic tables and uncovering grills that have been hiding under tarps and snow for the last several months, but now it is time to enjoy the warm and balmy evenings with great friends and great food!
Recently, it seems as though every day there is an article in the news, on Facebook, or on television about a human trafficking operation and its victims. Most of us, well removed from the situation, simply glance at the media piece, thank God it’s not our children and move on never giving the issue a second thought. Unfortunately, this dark and discreet industry has become a part of our culture, a part of our country, and is much more flagrant and widespread than we may think.
For some of us we still recall the fear and anticipation of the first day of our last year of high school. Our senior year was one of the first times in our almost adult lives where we were full of trepidation and excitement, anxiety, and aspiration… we were on the verge, at the edge of that precipice, that would determine where we would go, what we would do, and who we would become. As we looked down the barrel of our 12th grade year, we were eager for the thrill of our upcoming football season, but sad, because we would attend our last homecoming. We were elated to make our plans for prom, but poignant because this would be our final hurrah. And we were full of hope and enthusiasm as we walked across that stage to accept our diplomas, yet frightened at the same time watching our childhood slip away.
This incredible mix of emotions plagues every soon-to-be graduating senior and is basically a rite of passage – one of many into adulthood. For some, this journey is simpler, yet no less scary, as oftentimes these young adults have set plans, good grades, outstanding achievements, and a goal for their future. For others, this time can be absolutely terrifying as they have no direction, no set plans, and no idea of what they want to be when they grow up.