Everything Passes

I wrote this post as part of my participation in a blog tour for The Motherhood on behalf of the makers of Children’s MOTRIN® and received compensation to thank me for taking the time to participate. However, all opinions expressed are my own.

This month I have been sharing some of our holiday traditions. It was especially important for me to make this season special because our Christmas last year was so hard. We went into the winter break worried for our daughter. She was having a tough time at school and home and we were at a loss at how to help her. Parenthood is hardest for me when there isn’t a clear answer. Or even an understanding of the situation.

Unfortunately, we also had an emotional upheaval over the holiday so by the time we limped into the new year we all felt bruised and frankly fractured as a family. It took months for us to put us back together. We made big changes like switching schools and readjusting how we spend time together. For the first time ever we took a long trip together as a family.

Things aren’t perfect, we are most certainly still a work in progress as a family. But I have found a certain grace in the tough times we had in 2014. If nothing else, it has retaught me that “this too shall pass.” I have found my solace in parenthood time and time again in that stock phrase.

The first time I understand, as a mother, that everything passes was one afternoon when I was pouring apple juice for my daughters. You see for years I couldn’t even enter the juice aisle at the store. Just the smell of apple juice made my stomach curdle.

When I was ten my younger sister drowned. Her favorite thing was apple juice. So much that it seemed to emanate from her pores. Water didn’t bother me in the least, not even swimming in the pool she drowned in. But the scent of apple juice made me shiver.

Then came the day I was pouring it without a second thought. Time can’t ever make us forget but it can heal us. This too shall pass and you will muddle through. You’re a mother and there’s nothing you can’t take on.

I want to thank the the makers of Children’s MOTRIN® for sponsoring this Unstoppable Moms campaign. It’s been wonderful to reflect and to share some of my musts and tips. Be sure to share your own unstoppable tips on the MOTRIN® Facebook page. There are weekly drawings for $100 gift cards and every tip shared triggers $1 donation to Safe Kids.

A Northpole Breakfast

Its’ December first and I am sharing our “Welcome to the Christmas Season” breakfast in a compensated partnership with #CollectiveBias and Hallmark‘s #NorthpoleFun collection. The opinions are all my own though! Over the next twelve days, I will be sharing the traditions that make our Christmas special.

Northpole Breakfast

This breakfast is such a fun way to start the season. It’s the first school day after Thanksgiving and the first time we put our Christmas dishes on the table. This year it’s all about Santa and the Northpole (I am soaking up these last years of believing as long as possible!) Here is how it all came together…
[Read more…]

The Amazing Zhus Review

We received a selection of The Amazing Zhus for review on the blog.

The Amazing Zhus Logo

Hot Toys 2014 reviews are running a bit behind on the whole bloggity blog. I feel like unconsciously I was perhaps delaying this one because I wanted ALL THE ZHUS for myself. I mean the girls, yes for the girls. That’s the ticket. We have just had WAY too much fun with these. And they are already selling out everywhere.

The Amazing Zhus Collection

Basically Zhus are those little crazy hamsters that everyone loved a few years back but got stuck in kids’ hair (seriously, don’t hold them next to your head.) But this version is magical. Not even joking around here. They do all sorts of magic tricks. The girls loved them and we have spent hours playing with them. Read on for what we played with and what were our favorites.
[Read more…]

Hacking Halloween with Life 360

As an ambassador for Life 360, I feel a little like a cult leader. I can’t help it though. This app is an awesome family (or should that be frambily) communication tool. To encourage you to try it, I have come up with some fun ways to use it to make your Halloween more fun and way safer.
Hacking Halloween with Life 360
[Read more…]

Limb Differences Are Not Scary

Raffle for Camp No Limits
[Read more…]

Playtime : Moxie Girlz

#spon: I’m required to disclose a relationship between our site and MGAE. This could include MGAE providing us w/content, product, access or other forms of payment.


The girls don’t always love it when I have to work but they do love it when a package arrives in the mail and it’s something new for them. Reviewing toys is definitely a perk of being a blogger’s kid. Though it’s not a regular feature on this blog, leading up to the holidays I will be sharing many more because when it comes to spending holiday money, you want to make sure you are spending on something your kids are going to love.

I think Moxie Girlz Insiders fit the bill. Just look at these happy faces!
Moxie Girlz Review
[Read more…]

Hacking Education with the AIO

#spon: I am in a partnership with Intel. Through this partnership I gain access to content, product, or other forms of value.

After a touch school year last year, I have strong feelings on education, mainly that you have to have a strong hand in directing your child’s path. There have been numerous articles in the past year on “hacking education” as well as incredible home school innovations. And while we are not ready to take on all or even most of the advice, we are rethinking how we learn.

And it’s only natural that we integrate the AIO into that.
Hacking Education AIO
[Read more…]

Those Smiles

This is a sponsored post. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

Right before I sat down to write this post, the girls and I had our usual post school mortem. You know, what games were play on the playground, who sat by who, what they want for snack tomorrow. It seems silly but I am treasuring these moments. I can already see some pre-teen sneaking into the girls. I want to stop the clock!

I mean look at these sweet smiles…
Terror Twins Smile
They look so old!!
And darn it, those smiles are going to need some braces.
[Read more…]

#BeautyIs Determination

-This post is sponsored by Global Influence-

I confess that sometimes it’s easier fun to say yes than no. Desmonda Drama has been dissolving into a a crying, whiny mess every evening. And I am pretty sure it is due to her summer schedule. Summer school is open to every kid in our school district, so she has been attending that, then swimming at our swim club, and then on top of that attending adapted swim lessons every evening.

desmonda drama dove beautyis

So when she woke up this morning and said how about I stay home today and go to school tomorrow. I couldn’t help but say yes. Even though tomorrow is Saturday. well played, Desmonda Drama. Well played.
[Read more…]

A Gift for All Those Extra Teachers

When it comes to gifts for teachers, our go to teacher gift is a gift card. But for all those assistant teachers, counselors, art teachers, and so on, we try to put together a little something. These cups are perfect for Summer but can be customized for Winter too.

Cheap Teacher Gift Idea



Did I mention that they cost about $2 to make?
[Read more…]