2013 - xoxo Rebecca

Holiday Cards

It's New Years Eve and everyone is making their posts about their year in review! I am just now getting on the ball with our Holiday Cards. It has some moments on them so I thought I would share before this year officially becomes to a close.

My seven year old daughter made our cards by hand this year using construction paper and glitter. She used glitter to cover the snowmen which I thought was a really nice touch and made the cards all sparkly! I then created a little note to put inside of them for everyone. They are simple but meaningful. I think they turned out pretty cute. Thank goodness I finally got them in the mail. It's never too late to receive a card right?


I hope everyone has a safe and fun New Years tonight! And enjoy your last night of 2013


xoxo Rebecca

Guest Post - 5 New Year’s Resolutions For Kids

It’s the beginning of another year and that means lots of planning for healthier habits, more active lifestyles and a fresh start. The first few weeks of 2014 might be the perfect time to sit down with your kids and talk about New Year’s resolutions that they might have or that you can suggest. Here are five great ideas for your kids to try in the New Year.

1. Choose Veggies Instead of Sweets
This might sound like a far fetched request for your children, but, surprisingly, many kids already grasp the importance of healthy eating and are interested in being more conscious about their food choices. Real moms reported to Parents.com that their children actually wanted to cut back on fast food and junky choices.

Talk with your kids about the importance of drinking water to stay properly hydrated and regularly digesting fruits and vegetables while watching sugar intake to stay healthy. This can help them to take care of their own bodies and develop good habits for the future. And, of course, the best way to convince your kids is by example. Make sure that, as parents, you are modeling good eating habits first.

2. Make Active Play a Priority
Another way for kids to take charge of their personal health is by limiting their time on video games, computer, television and mobile devices in order to spend more time in active play. The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends that kids aim for a goal of physical activity, or getting outside and moving, at least three times per week.

3. Practice Safety Online
In the information age, children are exposed to the possibilities as well as the potential dangers of the Internet. Safekids.com lists some rules for appropriate behavior online. These include:
I will not give out personal information such as my address, telephone number, etc. without my parent’s permission
I will tell my parents right away if I see, read or hear something that makes me uncomfortable
I will never agree to meet someone online without my parents agreeing and coming with me to a public place
I will talk about posting pictures of myself with my parents first

4. Learn a New Skill
This year might be a great time for your little ones to start learning something new like a sport, an art or other hobby. You can help your son or daughter identify an interest or passion that they already have and direct this towards an enriching skill set. Guides like TakeLessons singing coaches can provide a great list of local professionals who can teach your budding musician. And most communities offer youth recreation sports like Little League baseball, Pop Warner football, soccer, basketball, etc. Your child might just thrive in a new activity like a team sport or private music lessons.

5. Choose Kindness
Perhaps the most important resolution your kids can make for 2014 is to be kind to more people. Whether it is their peers, younger children, adults or elderly people, everyone can stand a little more kindness.

“Indifference and neglect often do much more damage than outright dislike,” writes J.K. Rowling in the Harry Potter series. Talk with your kids about practical steps they can take at school, with their friends or together as a family to treat people well and value everyone.

With these five ideas to discuss, your kids can come up with incredible resolutions for this New Year.

Image from www.ivillage.com

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Author Bio: Jessica Socheski is a freelance journalist who currently writes about finding ways to save money on health care, fitness, and nutrition. Connect with her on Twitter.
xoxo Rebecca

The Blogmopolitan Quiz & Sunday Social

Remember thoes magazine quizzes? I used to love doing those all the time when I was a teenager. Now one has been made just for us bloggers called the Blogmopolitan Quiz. So I decided to jump on the trend and do one myself. Here are my answers:

Want to post your own answers to the quiz on your blog? You can download the blank quiz sheet HERE from Erin @ Two Thirds Hazel

Sunday Social

This Weeks Questions Asked By Neely Are:
xoxo Rebecca

That Friday Blog Hop

This blog hop is meant for anyone and everyone to join in and find other great blogs to read. 
You are welcome to link up anything from your blog, any & all social media {and everything in-between}

Please follow each host via ♥Bloglovin' by clicking on the buttons below

          

Also, take a moment to check out this week's co-host as well.

That Friday Blog Hop

Grab the button if you would like and tweet about the blog hop.
If you are interested in being a co-host for an upcoming week, please let one of us know.

xoxo Rebecca

DIY Holiday Mint Candy Platter

I wanted to make something fun this holiday season and had been seeing so much of the mint platters people were posting all over the internet. So I thought I would give it a try. This was a fun project to do with my daughter. it was really simple, fast, easy, and best of all....very inexpensive.

Here is what you need to get started:


First what you will need to do is pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees

Next you will need to start opening all your bags of mints and unwrapping them. I found it best to just start throwing them into a bowl once unwrapped.

After you get the mints unwrapped, you need to take your wax or parchment paper and cover your entire pan. You can use any shape pan. I chose a gingerbread pan but any one will do. The best to use are ones with lips around them because the mints run when heated.

Start placing your mints in the shape of your pan. You can do designs with the mints as well or just use one color mint. We used both spearmint and peppermints. With the shape of our pan, I attempted to make it red, green, red, green....but it started getting too hard that we just began to put them on there as best as we could in the shape of a gingerbread man.

Once the mints are all in place and covering the area you would like, go ahead and pop that in the oven. Make sure you keep a very, very close eye on it. Especially if you are using wax paper. We used wax paper and the oven began to smoke really bad. I would suggest parchment paper for this project. Let it bake for about seven minutes. 
It burns very quickly so keep a close eye on it.

Once it's done baking, remove it from the oven. The mints should looked fused together and nicely melted.

Let the pan cool completely before removing. Any movement to the mints could cause them to warp. The pan didn't take very long to cool. Around 15-30 mins. Then you can remove it from the pan and the paper. The wax paper stuck but I didn't mind since it was on the bottom of it. You couldn't see or tell.

Then you can use the platter for your treats. In our case, I placed some chocolate chip cookies my daughter helped me make. Be careful though, the platter is now like glass so treat it like that. It can break very easily.
xoxo Rebecca

Zeenie Dollz Review

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.

I was excited to be able to receive and review a Zeenie Doll for my daughter. Well, she reviewed the doll for me since she is the one playing with it. What is a Zeenie Doll you ask? Zeenie Dollz is a series of eco-friendly, eco-warrior fashionista dolls that combine style and education into one perfect package. The 12-inch dolls are made of recyclable materials and bring to light environmental causes that need our attention.

The concept and mission behind Zeenie Dollz started with a sketch by Hansini Wadhwani, the creator, designer and inventor of the series. Hansini showed her mother, Laxmi Wadhwani, the first sketch of a girl with flowing blue hair and explained that her persona was that of Mother Earth. With overwhelming support and belief in the concept, Laxmi leveraged her years of experience in the toy industry to bring Zennia, the first doll in the series, to life. From there, the mother-daughter duo have worked together  through every step of the creative process to take a beautiful sketch, a meaningful cause and a passion for the environment, and merge it into the Zeenie Dollz series.

Created for young girls and eco-conscious parents, the dolls are fashionistas, donning the latest in groundbreaking style, but Zeenie Dollz stand for much more. Each doll also brings to light an environmental cause that needs attention, bringing together education and green ideals for young girls. Zennia, the special edition doll in the series, leads the pack and embodies Mother Earth, the protector of our planet.  As the giver and sustainer of life on earth, Zennia is passionate about combating the evil anti-environment villains that threaten to destroy the world. To assist her in protecting our environment and spreading eco-awareness, Zennia is joined by a team of five eco-warrior fashionistas:
We received Yana in the mail a few weeks ago. Immediately, my seven year old daughter wanted to open the box and see what this doll was all about. The colors for the packaging were bright and caught her eye right away.
Yana is a bright and beautiful doll. She came with a stand for display when not being played with. Which I love stands for dolls. It keeps them so much nicer then being thrown into a box. She also came with a hair brush, a bracelet that fit my daughter's wrist perfectly, and an eco-warrior membership card. Plus, she comes with an adorable little dolphin to hold.
 My daughter loved playing with her new doll, Yana. The concept behind these dolls are great. They serve a good purpose and promote awareness. We can't wait to collect them all. You can purchase your own as well. Click HERE to purchase Yana and her other friends.

You can stay connected by checking out their other social networking sites


I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com
Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.
xoxo Rebecca

FDS Personals Perfectly Portable Cleansing Cloths Review

Established in 1966, FDS® - "Feminine, Discreet, Sensual" is one of the most well known and trusted brands in Feminine Personal Care. FDS offers a range of feminine deodorant sprays and washes which are currently sold through a number of retailers. With over 40 years of experience helping women feel fresh and confident with our FDS products. All FDS products are clinically tested, 100% hypo-allergenic to ensure safety.

FDS Personals are a new product line coming out of Perfectly Portable Cleansing Cloths for women. They are discrete and fits easily into any purse or bag for travel. As a woman, I know feeling fresh and personal hygiene is an important thing.
What is even more important to me is that the products I choose to use are safe, yet effective, on my body. I do not like the thought of using chemicals when there are better ways to feel fresh and clean without the use of such harsh products. FDS Personals knows more women are switching from chemical products to more of a natural approach.

So that is why they created this line of personal wipes. And it is nice to know they are taking out some chemicals that are now known to be bad. Here are some reasons why FDS Personal Cleansing Cloths are a better cloth to use:

Free of Parabens, Sulfates and Alcohol
Gentle enough for Sensitive skin
pH balanced & hypoallergenic
Gynecologist tested
Dermatologist tested
Discreet and flushable
No colors or dyes
Not tested on animals


Each box contains 30 cloth wipes. There are three packs with 10 each inside. The packs are a very nice modern design, easy to open and close back up as well. They are lightly scented so there is no over-whelming perfume smell and lightly moistened for comfort. Another great feature is that they are affordable., retailing between $4.99 to $5.99. Right now, you can find these at select Walmart stores nationwide.

Disclaimer: I received a sample of this product to review and discuss.
Although this was a sponsored post, all opinions are my own.
xoxo Rebecca

Nine Month Mark

We are finally in the home-stretch. Officially hit the nine month mark now. Meaning we are counting down the weeks and days. Time has gone by fast and I don't know how I'm not prepared yet mentally for this new baby. But I am not. It's coming up so fast. But we are excited at the same time. Just nervous. Baby will be here before we all know it. And most likely, before 28 days since my other pregnancies were before my due date as well.
My seven year old daughter took the photo above of me. Isn't it cute? The belly is pretty big now. I think the biggest I've ever had in a pregnancy. My husband agrees as well. It gets in the way so much. I can't seem to move, bend, stand, sit... nothing. Everything is uncomfortable. But I'm thinking the next of these updates I do, will be a baby announcement! What do you all think? If you want to see my past monthly bumpdate reports & photos, just click HERE 

Well, I officially went over my 20 pound mark. I wasn't supposed to gain more than 20 pounds total. But I did. And now it makes me feel a bit bad. Especially since that week I got scolded for the weight I gained. But I am hoping that I don't go anywhere past 25 pounds. 
So it can't be helped. I've been trying to workout, walking about six hours a day, and I eat properly. Just with pregnancy, I guess it's bound to happen to put on a little weight. I'll be so happy to get it off though in a few weeks. 22 pounds is not something a girl likes to hear. But if the baby and I are healthy, I think it will be alright.

Are you as excited as I am to find out what our little baby will be? I can't wait to see what we are having now. I'm still hoping girl but everyone keeps saying boy all the way. So who knows! It's not too much longer now! I did a poll with my last pregnancy to see what everyone thought and so since we are down to the last month, I thought it would be fun to do another. I'm so curious to know what you all think this baby will be.

What Do You Think? He or She?
  
pollcode.com free polls 


As I have stated above, I'm scared to be almost finished with this pregnancy but also relieved as well. So many crazy things have happened with this one. Each one of my pregnancies have been totally different and had some crazy moments. It's funny how that happens. But I am now going to the doctor once a week until delivery. Almost there!!! The end is close near.

This week's appointment was a bit scary for me. In general the entire day has some crazy downfalls. Wasn't the best day. But things started to be ok. I went for my 36 weeks appointment. My blodd pressure is still great as always however I was told something a pregnant woman doesn't want to hear. Actually a couple of things they don't want to hear.
The doctor started to get concerned because we couldn't locate the baby's heart beat. It's always shown up before and this time, it wasn't able to be found. Only my heart beat. So then he measured my belly and it's now measuring too small. Each appointment for the past three weeks, they started to measure my belly. And each time, the weeks get pushed back. This time, I was showing an entire month back instead of where I should be. He started getting concerned the baby is too small and it's not growing anymore. My heart sank. I knew what that could mean.

So he put in for an emergency ultrasound to check for the baby's weight/size and position of where the heart could be located. The good news is, the baby is not breech anymore and has turned head down. It has also dropped. I've been waiting for it to drop. It's been so horrible having the baby up in my ribs and lungs this whole time. I can never breathe. Now, there is some relief at least there.

So I went in for my ultrasound and the lady started with the stomach. She found the baby's heart and it was beating at 146 bpm. So thank goodness it was easy to locate on the ultrasound. We checked the kidneys, liver, heart, stomach, head, and fluid around the baby. She said everything seemed to look like nothing was wrong and the baby is weighing in at 6 pounds 1 oz. So the baby is not small and is still growing. What a relief that was. I was so happy. I haven't had an ultrasound since 19 weeks so it was a nice gift to see my baby again. I even got a photo. It's hard to make out because there just isn't anymore room for the baby to move around. But I still am happy I got one regardless.

Here is little baby's profile.
So little one is doing alright. And I am glad. I also had to do my Group Strep B test as well this week. It was probably the most comfortable one I have ever done. With my other pregnancies, they did it differently and this one was so much more better. So we shall see what the results show. I was negative with my daughter and positive with my son. So this time around, I have no idea.

I also finally get to see the Pelvic Bone Rehabilitation Specialist as well today. I was supposed to have already seen her before this appointment but there was a mix up with scheduling. My doctor really needs to me to be seen. Last week, I posted about how with this pregnancy, I somehow have dislocated my pelvis out of place and so the joints that connect my leg bones together and very swollen and inflamed.

It hurts to walk, to move, to stand up, to sit down...basically everything. I've never had this before so it will make for a more difficult labor and I don't want that. So my doctor wants me to be seen so they can help re-position my bones back to a more comfortable setting so that I'm back to normal when labor starts. So we shall see how that goes and hopefully it will relieve some of the pain {I'm hoping all of the pain} I've been having.

I was checked as well to see if I have dilated any since with my previous pregnancies, I started around this many weeks. So far, nothing. Everything is closed up and no baby coming right now. I'm glad. I want to at least make it out of December before this one decides to show up.

Now that I'm going once a week, I go back next week at 37 weeks in. My doctor will be on vacation for the holidays so I will be seeing the other doctor I saw when he went on vacation for Thanksgiving. I believe it will just consist of just rechecking things to make sure baby is ok and be quick. Though I have no idea. And then the following week when my doctor returns, I want to re-discuss my "birth-plan" though he's really nice about how I feel about birthing and being natural and no interference. So I am glad that nothing I don't want done will be done unless it's absolutely needed. He knows my beliefs on c-sections and inductions and things like that and so since I've never had to go through anything like that, he said my chances are around 9% of having to have that done. So I'm super glad to hear that nothing will be pushed unless it's an emergency.
I feel confident that everything will go the way I would like it to. Though, this being my third pregnancy, I do understand things don't always go as planned and so I am prepared for that was well.
xoxo Rebecca

That Friday Blog Hop

This blog hop is meant for anyone and everyone to join in and find other great blogs to read. 
You are welcome to link up anything from your blog, any & all social media {and everything in-between}

Please follow each host via ♥Bloglovin' by clicking on the buttons below

          

Also, take a moment to check out this week's co-host as well.

That Friday Blog Hop

Grab the button if you would like and tweet about the blog hop.
If you are interested in being a co-host for an upcoming week, please let one of us know.

xoxo Rebecca

Wordless Wednesday - Under My Tree


xoxo Rebecca