IF YOU COULD ONLY SEE WHAT I SEE

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I recently was hanging out with some of my best girlfriends. We hadn’t seen each other in awhile. Seeing them is like putting on your fav sweatshirt. So comfy and feels like a million bucks. We spent the night gabbing away about our families, our jobs and Mom talk. Mom talk consists of 3 things: hilarious stories about your kids (maniacs), Mom guilt and body shaming our own selves. We all had something to say about what we looked like after the past 8 years of having kids. Of course, everyone is hilariously self-deprecating. We laugh so hard that it hurts. But as the hilarious self-shaming moves from friend to friend I can’t help but think “If you could only see what I see.”

So, to some of the girls who I admire most, here’s what I see. 

First off, I did not plan it this way, but all my friends are smokin hot. I’m taking 10/10. Gorgeous! They say surround yourself with people who elevate you, and boy do you guys bring my score up. So that’s the end of that story. But when I look at you, that’s not what I see. 

When I am in your company, the truth is I don’t even see you. I just bask in your presence. Your confidence and whit and endless love for those around you propel me for days. God, I wish we saw each other more. 

When I look closer, I see how unique you are. No one walks, talks, thinks or acts alike.  You have the cutest style. You are authentically yourself. Your confidence in who you are as an individual is so inspiring.  It gives me the confidence to be uniquely me.  

I see your strength inside and out. Like I said, you girls look AMAZING.  Everyone has had all these babies and still look so strong! Muscles are everywhere!! But most importantly I see your strength on the inside.  I see your determination because you’ve all weathered something and you’ve all powered through. Your experiences have changed you, but it’s changed all of you for the better. You have this amazing ability to do hard things.

I see how successful you are. You are killing it at your jobs. You’ve all worked hard to make the career that fits for your lifestyle as a working mom.  Everyone's configuration of how they do it is different, but it all works. Your daughters are watching and they are so proud.

I see how amazing of a mother you are. Your kids are thriving and I’ve never seen you work harder at anything else. No matter how challenging your kids can be on the day to day, just know that you’re doing a great job.  You’re raising good people.

I see women who are kind and caring and who really have their sh$# together. I know it doesn’t feel that way, but don’t forget as you’re lost in the weeds of the day to do, that those on the outside see the big picture. Trust me, you’ve got this. 

I see the way your husband looks at you. I know you’re so often too busy to notice, with kids crawling all over you, job responsibilities, trying to get dinner on the table and more, but I promise he’s still head over heels. He sees what I see.  Girl, you still got it. 

And so much more.

I know I wrote this inspired by my group of friends but I hope that any woman reading this can see herself in my words.  So next time any of you look in the mirror, I hope you we what others see...That strong, smart, unique, independent, talented smokin hot friend.

WE'RE BORED

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We're almost there, folks! Spring Break is in our future, which means we're so close to being in outdoor weather.  I don't know about you guys, but even though the weather is starting to get nice, we're bored. It's rainy. Puddles are so fun, but the laundry is out of control. Also, I’m loving these sunny days, but it’s still too cold to be outside for a super long time. So until we are consistently outside on our bikes cruising through the neighborhood, I've upped my arsenal of fun things to do, so we can shut off the TV and HANG OUT.  

Here are some of my favorite finds...

1. Get Creative

I need activities that can engage all 4 kids or that are easy enough for the older two (6 and 4) to do on their own so I can help them but also keep the twin 2 year olds occupied so they don't burn the house down.  I also love it when they're not super long crafts because then we can do them before bed as a way to do something fun once the littles have gone to sleep.  And if it's easy enough for the littles to do it too, then it's a major win.  Here are some of my favorites!  

 

2. Being Active Inside 

Believe you me, we all have energy to burn.  I don't want to buy new toys, so I've decided to rummage through the garage and determine what won't break my house.  The bounce house has been a lifesaver!  

 

Cosmic Yoga is an oldie but a goodie! I don't know if they like the story or my yoga mat more, but its a fun way to all do something together! 

 

3. Find new (and old) things to do

It's time to revisit the list of things that are fun around town.  Hayden is in first grade and he's a little light on after school activities, so I've (re)researched fun things he could do after school.  My best source for finding these things is Hulafrog.  I highly recommend signing up for their newsletter for fun family ideas for your local area.

  1. Revolution Fitness
  2. Open Play Indoor Sports Places
  3. Rock climbing
  4. Scene 75
  5. The Aquarium
  6. Trampoline Fun
  7. Pogo Play
  8. Children's Theater
  9. Disney on Ice
  10. Family Series at the Ballet

Consolation idea...Cookies or Quarters

I realize this sounds like a drinking game, but I swear it's not.  As one can imagine, dinner is nuts in our house.  We've devised a reward system that's simple and so far effective! The kids can earn a cookie or a quarter (their choice) for every meal they sit through, with their butt in their seat, with decent manners.  They also have to try and do a good job on their dinner.  If so, they can choose between a cookie or a quarter.  The quarters are adding up quickly and I'm sure we're headed to the candy section of Walgreens soon.  Fine by me! They earned it! 

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So cheers to Spring! It's coming! Spring sports are coming! The sun is setting later! Warm weather is starting to sprout! But until it's here to stay, may our patience and our sanity stay with us and may we all find fun things to do as a family! 

 

The OMG Only 2 Weeks Until Christmas Holiday Gift Guide

Truthfully I love everything about giving gifts.  It's 100% one of my love languages.  Some people take out the trash they show they care and some of us spend days just wondering what wrapping paper to choose! I (like many of us) just so happen to be in a season of life where I can't give my full obsessive attention to every single detail of gifts that I give (is my clear tape clear enough??) because at this current juncture I spread my energy and my thoughts far and wide.  #toomanytabsopen

So, if you're like me and you realize that the holidays are just a short way away but you have a LONG way to go on your list, then this post is for you.  It's time to finally stop the procrastinating and get shopping! I spent the weekend paroozing Instagram, Etsy and thinking of some of my favorite shops to compile what will hopefully be the giddy up we all need to close the deal in a meaningful way on this holiday season.

Let the shopping commence! {Emoji of the cash with wings on it flying away}

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TO THE MOM WHO SAID "I'M SORRY"

First let me start with the circumstances.  I have 4 kids 6 and under. I was walking with all 4 somewhere this morning when a woman asked, “Are they ALL yours?” to which I proudly replied, “Yes!” (they were actually being well behaved so I was extra proud).  Then she dropped the bomb, “I’m sorry.”  Ugh. Unfortunately, this has happened to me before so I’ve got a pretty polite response on standby.  I quickly responded, “Don’t be.  I’m a lucky lady.”  But what I really wanted to say was...

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Hot Mess Yoga Is My Kind Of Yoga

For anyone who thinks yoga sounds easy, try planking for 2 minutes, 17 seconds in 102 degrees and then call me.  Not to be like hot yoga is a big deal, but it’s kind of a big deal.  I’ve always been afraid to try it.  I feel like I’m choking in a sauna, so how could I manage 102 degrees? Well I gave it a try at Body Alive, located here in Kenwood, and I'm hooked.

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Tot TrYbe Craft Kits for Kids

You guys, winter is coming.  I don’t watch Game of Thrones but I think that means something about Dragons or John Snow (Joe Shmoe?, John Doe?) but to me, that means LOTS and LOTS and LOTS of time indoors with my tribe of children.  I’m not going to lie, I’m intimidated. I’m currently in the research phase of finding fun indoor activities that are good for 2-6 year olds, and boy did I strike gold.  Tot TrYbe is where it’s at!

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Differences Don't Define Us

Meet my nephew Charlie. He loves poop jokes, loves to make a mess, loves to paint, loves to ride horses and loves hanging out with his family. He's almost 6 incase you couldn't guess it.  He is full of energy. The kid never stops!! He's such a busy bee. Charlie also has Apraxia, which means despite living life in full throttle, he has to take life one word at a time. This past Sunday we got to celebrate Charlie and other super star kids with Apraxia at the Apraxia Awareness walk here in downtown Cincinnati.

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JUST TRY IT - THE 7 DAY EXPERIMENT

Ever wonder what it's like to make a change but change seems like too much of a commitment? I knew I needed to fit fitness into my morning routine, but that was really intimidating.  I made a deal with myself to try it for 7 days. If I hated it, I'd stop. If I loved it, I'd learn something. Regardless, at least I knew the answer instead of wondering.  My conclusion is that everyone should try their own 7 day experiment.

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