Have you heard of Crazy 8 Kid’s Clothing? I’m kinda hooked…

I was perusing online for affordable children’s clothing and happened to fall upon this company called Crazy 8.  The clothing is super cute and comes at the most affordable prices with shipping set at $5 everyday.  It seems that they are having a 30% off sale and a $9.99 jean sale.  I just might start my Christmas shopping now!

My favorites are shown below along with their pricing.  I highly recommend checking out this site!crazy 8

look 1

Leopard Print Hoodie:

$20.92

Peace Sign Tee:

 $10.42

Crazy Soft Skinny Jean:

$17.42

Critter Sweater Beanie

$9.02

Be Awesome Scarf

$10.42

Be Awesome Gloves

$9.02

Metallic Boots

$20.92

Starstruck Fruit Salad

This morning I needed to have  a dish prepared for my son’s Kindergarten Potluck Breakfast.  I volunteered to bring in a fruit salad but I wanted to bring one that was appealing to the eye so that the kids in the class would be more likely to dig in.  To make the salad more interesting, I added one cool and rare fruit: Starfruit!

fruit salad kindergarten

Starstruck Fruit Salad

Ingredients:

  • 3 Starfruit
  • 1 container red grapes
  • 1 container green grapes
  • 1 container organic strawberries – sliced
  • 1 mini watermelon
  • 1 honeydew melon
  • 1 organic lemon

Recipe

  1. Chop all fruit except the starfruit and mix together.
  2. Slice the starfruit for a nice collection of stars to top the salad.  Arrange as you’d like for nice presentation.
  3.  Slice and squeeze fresh the lemon and drizzle the juice over the top to preserve the flavor and texture of the fruit.

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Eating Clean…for Labor?

 

There’s a common phrase being thrown around out there for eating fresh fruits and vegetables as well as lean proteins and whole grains.  It’s called CLEAN EATING.  I’ve used this term also and still use it.

Throughout my pregnancy (3rd), I’ve consistently followed a clean diet and have had a virtually symptomless pregnancy. Yesterday, at 36 weeks 2 days pregnant, I learned from my OB that I am already 3cm dilated and 50% effaced.  She basically said that I could deliver this baby either tomorrow, or two weeks from now.  Either way, I want to do what I can to prepare.

I was so surprised when she said that I was 3 cm when only two weeks prior, I was O cm and 0% effaced.  However, like some other pregnant women nearing the end of their pregnancies, I’ve begun to indulge a bit more and as a result, end up feeling achy, crampy, and lethargic.  This happened after my exam yesterday.20140828-084933-31773109.jpg

As soon as my husband and I left the dr., we went our usual route to Starbucks to pick up coffee beans and for me, a decaf iced drink.  Along with my iced drink, I picked up a slice of pumpkin loaf which has become a trend for me in the past 3 weeks.  No biggie.  But then, I got home, and as it was late, we decided to order out.  Pizza and salads.  Sure, I ordered a salad.  But i ate all the chicken off it and proceeded to eat two slices of greasy pizza while finishing my decaf iced coffee.  And you know what happened?  I immediately became congested, had a lovely case of diarrhea, and  went into a series of BH contractions ranging from 5 minutes apart to 11 minutes apart for the next 4 hours accompanied with a back ache and an overall feeling of bloat.  These are in fact symptoms of impending labor, but having done this twice before, I knew that this wasn’t labor.  Regardless, this continued through the evening leaving me with a very restless sleep that woke me every 3 hours.  Labor seemed imminent…that is, until I woke up and changed my tune.

I woke with a headache that would rival the worst hangover, a bloated face and fingers, and a very very sluggish demeanor.  This was at 4:00am.  So, I thought having a bowl of cereal would help.  One bowl of cereal turned into two, followed by a food coma.  Falling asleep again, I woke to the sound of two children screaming MAMA! at 7:30am with all the same symptoms that I had at 4:00am.  Regardless, I pulled myself out of bed, and went to the washroom to splash my face with water and caught a glimpse of myself in the mirror.  I looked just as bloated and congested as I felt.  But…my contractions were gone.  So, I had a window of time to try to alleviate my symptoms.

I ran to the kitchen, and while making breakfast for my kids, went to my go-to breakfast for warding off colds – Green juice and fresh fruit.  Within 10 minutes of eating a few bites and sipping some green juice, I began to feel better.  Not just ok, but actually better.  My Braxton Hicks contractions started again but were spaced far apart again, baby #3 started kicking happily, the feeling of bloat began to subside, and my energy returned.  As with any clean breakfast like this, a trip to the bathroom isn’t rare, but the feelings associated are not ones of nausea.  My sinuses cleared almost immediately and my pep in my step returned.

SO here are my thoughts.  Knowing that the body cleanses itself out before the onset of labor by means of releasing bodily fluids and waste, why not try eating cleaner in preparation for labor?  No woman enjoys being uncomfortable, cramped and achy in the final weeks of pregnancy and for some, this is just unavoidable.  But, in my case it seems that my well-being and over physical wellness is directly affected by the food that I feed it.  Having a symptomless pregnancy while clean eating may be a coincidence, but I’m beginning to believe differently.  I’m thinking that by continuing to eat clean through to the end may help prepare my body for labor by keeping my body full of vitamins and nutrients, clear of toxins and congestants, and lowering my blood pressure by keeping foods high in fat, salt, and sugar from causing undue stress on my digestive system.  I’m going to give it a try!

Finding Balance When Pregnant and Caring for Multiple Children

This past week, I’ve been caring for my two children with the help of my in-laws while my kitchen is renovated in the city.  Being in my third trimester, I’ve had to strategize the day accordingly in order to reserve my energy and still be able to parent effectively while my husband remains in the city to oversee the project and continue to work.  So, how do I do it and continue to work as well?  I always refer back to OPAL. Organize, Prioritize, Act and Let Go.

There are always going to be days where I seem to have way to much on my plate despite my best intentions to plan ahead.  These are the days that include endless demands from my children, seemingly endless work emails and deadlines, and of course, making sure to take time to address my own needs as a mother and this time around, a pregnant woman.

So, this week, this is how I’ve utilized O.P.A.L. to set myself up for success:

ORGANIZE:

WORK

  • I reserve time in my schedule for my work obligations and other appointments.

KIDS

  • FOOD: Snacks and quick breakfast foods are placed in a bin where they know to go if they happen to wake up early or get hungry before meal times.  At the beginning of each week, we talk about what these foods will include. Usually, it comes down to 3 choices of Lara Bars, dried berries, and roasted plantain chips.
  • ACTIVITIES: In the morning, the kids have the choice of either drawing or reading while I blog, email and make work phone calls.
  • NAP TIME: Scheduled for the same time each day
  • QUALITY TIME: Every afternoon, I’ve set aside time to bond with my son with a quiet activity, and the morning, with my daughter.

adelie park logan park

PRIORITIZE:

This varies between WORK and KIDS.

logan painting

However, the kids always come first so what I do to prepare them for my workday is I fill them in on how the day is planned.  My son and daughter both are familiar with how my workday unfolds with regard to blogging and training clientele, so what we do, is we plan activities for them during that time.  Perhaps one day it will be reading quietly, another working on an art project or spending time with their grandparents.  This planning together helps them understand that their well-being is my first priority.  Of course, if things come up, work takes a back seat, but at the same time, my children know that in order to live, I need to work.  So, we work together always.

 

ACT:

In order to make some of my most well thought-out plans work at least 50% of the time, I need to act upon them.  This not only includes following through with work, but following through with my children.  This means honoring promises made and also holding them accountable for their activities so that I can honor my work appointments.  I find it important for my children to know that while they are my first priority, they need to learn patience as well.  As a mother, it is always on my mind to jump to their every request, but taking these moments to pause are important for me as well to be able to follow through in teaching them to wait when the time calls for it.

 

LET GO:

*Sigh* This is my biggest challenge.  I’m one of those people who sets out to conquer the world on a daily basis and expects just that.  Letting go for me doesn’t mean letting go of my goals and aspirations for the day.  It means trying my best and letting go of the result.  Sometimes this means letting go of the fact that all of the items on my list my not be finished, but that the ones I do finish are done to the best of my ability.  It may mean that I need to let go of my best intention to stay patient with my children and not carry the guilt of borderline losing it during a very packed day.  Sometimes, it means that I just say, “My best today may be my worst tomorrow and that is ok.”

 

 

FitMOM Workout: Playground Mommy Workout

This morning, I took my children out for our routine morning walk to the park.  During our extended stay on the cape, I will make this a morning ritual as my kids wake well before the rest of the world regardless of the day and need to be run like puppies.  So far, this has been working well for all of us as it’s given me an opportunity to workout while they play without worry of them running off.  This morning, I needed to get in a quick upper body workout before seeing clients for the day so I decided to trade off the following three exercises with pushing my daughter in the swing and running after my son.  No need for any special equipment.  Just use what the playground has to provide and get creative!

Here is what I call my Playground Mommy Workout:

For more workouts, please visit my YouTube Channel

 

Getting Through the Mommy-Do List (or ANYTHING for that matter) with Four Simple Words

My daily mommy-do list is always full of things that need to be done before the day is finished with many carry-over items when life needs my attention more than what’s on the list. This can be frustrating at times, but when it comes down to what really matters, some of those things on the list can wait. To help me determine which items can wait, and which need my more immediate attention, I use four simple words: Organize, Prioritize, Act and Let Go.

IMG_3581

Today, I haven’t any clients to see, so I’ve constructed a list of mommy-do tasks to tackle for the day. When I have days where I don’t have to work outside of being a mommy on-the-go, I fill this list with a slew of items that I am determined to accomplish before the day is over. As I sit here sipping my coffee, I’ve already cooked and eaten my breakfast, finished a load of laundry (that now needs to be dried and folded), had our upstairs neighbor dump a bucket of water on their back deck only to rain down and soak all of the furniture on my back deck, spoken with said neighbors and attempted to soak up the mess, and written the original version of this entire blog only to have it randomly erased (and unsaved) by WordPress. Great start to the day, right? But here I am, starting over. What can I say, I’m an optimist and overachiever (understatement of the year). So, before I let my head get in the way of what will actually happen during the course of today, I’m going to share how I integrate OPAL into my day to help me accomplish what is needed without getting overwhelmed or worse, down on myself.

ORGANIZE

In order to conquer the world, I of course need a plan of action. For some this means making an actual schedule where their time is held accountable by a timetable, and I’ve seen plenty of these SAHM templates online. For me, this works for all of 1 day before I’m found curled up in a ball, in the corner, quaking from an irrational disdain that I have for the piece of paper containing the time table that “made me” slave all day. So, when I decide to ORGANIZE, I simply make a list of the things that I would like to achieve for the next day.

PRIORITIZE

If you’re anything like me, you may find your list looking like a bucket list. In my mind, I am super woman and can fly from one place to another managing to finish everything in a matter of seconds before my kids decide to tear it apart again. In the real world, I’m still pretty amazing, however, I’d like to have my sanity when it’s time to go to bed. So, I PRIORITIZE what’s on my list. First and foremost, I PRIORITIZE my health and well being. Without them, I cannot be asked to do much of anything without growing impatient, stubborn or downright pushy with anyone that I encounter. So, the first things that I push to the top of my list are the very things that will put me in the right frame of mind to mindfully go about my day. These things may include working out, meditating with my children, taking time to write my thoughts in a journal, or just taking 10 minutes to sit and do absolutely nothing. I cannot stress enough how important the practice of self-care is when setting out to be productive for the day. After these things are set, I take a look at the rest of my list and choose three small tasks along with one to two larger tasks.

ACT

Now that I’ve ORGANIZED and PRIORITIZED my list, I feel pretty accomplished. However, ACTING on what I’ve set out to do is the actual goal. I’m one of those people who abhors being told what to do, (partly why I own my own business and am a personal trainer for a living) so my list of tasks needs to look particularly appealing. This is also why I put self care items at the top of the list. I am more likely to ACT upon my attaining my goals if I feel important and nurtured from the start.

LET GO

This is the most important of all the words for me to follow. It’s usually when my family is fed, the kids are bathed, story time is finished and everyone is in bed that I revisit my list to see what is left. It’s usually at this time that I also feel as though I can tackle everything that I didn’t PRIORITIZE on my list in addition to the items still left on it like doing an extra load of laundry, mopping the floors and even cleaning the bathroom. This is where I need to LET GO. If I didn’t PRIORITIZE it on my list, then it doesn’t need to be tackled for the night. On the flip side, if I didn’t finish everything on my list, that is ok. I decidedly take this time at the end of the night to listen to my body and how I am feeling. If I still have the energy to finish up a few things I started earlier in the day, then I will finish those things. However, if my day was rife with more challenges than I expected, then I might revisit one of the self care items on my list and repeat so that I can have a more restful sleep in preparation for the next day.

Following these four words that make up the OPAL in OPAL Mom™ really help me when it comes to doing anything. It’s not just the mommy-do list that needs to be addressed in my day, as I’m sure is the same for other mothers out there. One of the great things (and challenging things) about being a mom is that our days change from moment to moment requiring us to stay on our toes and be adaptable. And if all else fails, there’s always tomorrow.

For more information about my mommy blog and to join the OPAL Mom™ Community Forum, please visit: http://www.opalmom.com