Mommy Monday

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Here lately, I’ve been trying to make a conscious effort to teach Huff the Tot about kindness and empathy. (Daniel Tiger is a GREAT resource for this! Plus, that kid has a song for errything!) I want her to be mindful of others as well as of her own emotions. I picked up a few books from the library, but this one was my absolute favorite:

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Its called, Have You Filled a Bucket Todayand it is AMAZING! The book describes how everyone, all over the world carries around an invisible bucket. And when your bucket is full (of good thoughts and feelings about yourself) you feel happy. But when your bucket is empty, you feel sad and lonely.

The book goes on to explain how we can fill other’s buckets (and, in turn, fill our own) and become “bucket fillers”.

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It also tells how there are some people who try to take good feelings from others’ buckets, thinking they can fill their own buckets but that will never work. These people are known as “bucket dippers”(i.e., bullies).

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This has been great for Huff the Tot! I’ve read it to her several times and she has said, on more than one occasion, “Mommy, I {insert something here such as “pick up my toys”, “draw you a picture”, or “build you a castle”} and I will fill your bucket up!”

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There are a TON of activities on the book’s website as well as on Pinterest! So you can keep the learning going with fun coloring pages or crafts! I think this would be a GREAT porject for an elementary school class as well! Heck, I think everyone in the nation could use some bucket filling nowadays!

 

Have you ever read this book? What did you think? Have you read one that covers the same premise? Share in the comments below!

Mommy Monday

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Before I had kids, I read A LOT. There was a time I could be found most days with a book in my hand. Then I started ghostwriting. And then I had kids. And my reading log went from about 40+ books a year to maybe four. I’m trying to remedy that, though, which is why one of my goals for 2017 is to read more. I want to read, not only for my own benefit, but I want my kids to see me reading–I want to raise little bookworms!

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So any time Huff the Tot wants to read a book, I {most of the time} happily oblige. Here lately, her book of choice has been an old book of Huff the Hubs’:

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This book is all about Louis Pasteur, the inventor of the rabies vaccine (and pasteurization of milk!). HtT likes to read this book about 2,000 times a day, so it was no surprise to me when she came to me and said, “Mommy, my horse died. Her has the rabies germs.”

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Y’all, I can’t make this stuff up.

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And even though it may sound a bit morbid that my kid is pretending her horse died of rabies, I still think its awesome that my three-year-old is remembering and comprehending the story, as well as building her vocabulary! Those are just a few of the phenomenal benefits your kiddo gets just by you reading to them!

Do you read to your kids? What are some of their favorite books? Share in the comments below!

 

 

Her’s Day Thursday

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As you know, I’m all about raising Huff the Tot to be a strong, independent girl (you know, until she decides to be “strong willed” in the cereal aisle of the grocery store-ha!) and I love having books around that can help get those values across. I stumbled upon some awesome books while perusing the interwebs this week and they were too great not to share!

 

Not All Princesses Dress In Pink 

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This book, written by Jane Yolen, let’s girls know that you can be any kind of princess you want! Want to be a princess that wears hockey uniforms? Do it! Are you a more traditional princess? Good for you! Like to breakdance while listening to classical music? Go, girl! Here’s an excerpt from this awesome book:

“Not all princesses dress in pink.
Some play in bright red socks that stink,
blue team jerseys that don’t quite fit,
accessorized with a baseball mitt,
and a sparkly crown!”

 

Stand Tall, Mary Lou Melon

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Stand Tall, Molly Lou Melon tells the tale of little Molly Lou. She’s not like most people, but she’s okay with that! Her grandmother has taught her to be herself and be proud of who she is. But one day, Molly Lou starts a new school and there is a bully there determined to make Molly’s life miserable. But thankfully, our little heroine knows exactly what to do!

 

The Princess Knight

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“Violet is a young princess who wishes she could show the world that she is just as brave and strong as her brothers. But her strict father insists that she get married, and her brothers only mock her when she wants to be included in their fun. So Violet decides to use her intelligence and bravery to show everyone–once and for all–what she’s made of.”

 

Dangerously Ever After 

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The tag line alone is enough to hook a reader of any age: Not all princesses are made of sugar and spice–some are made of funnier, fiercer stuff.

 

Have you read any of these books? Do you have a favorite book you like to read to your little lady that promotes girl power? Share in the comments below!

Mommy Monday

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Ever since becoming a mom, one of my favorite hobbies, reading, has kind of fallen to the wayside. Between diaper changes and tantrums, I haven’t had the time. Not to mention I wrote books for a living and, at the end of the day, I didn’t want to read more. I just wanted to sleep. But now that I’m no longer ghostwriting/editing books, one of my goals is to read more. I finished Me Before You when Huff the Babe was a fresh newborn and sped through Harry Potter and the Cursed Child a few weeks ago. I told myself it was time to read a non-fiction; one that would help me in my new role as a SAHM and wife. I chose this book:

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I had pinned this a loooooooooong time ago on Pinterest (back when Huff the Tot was a few months old) but I just now got around to reading it. I’m only six chapters in, but I gotta tell ya, its already taught me so much!

As I read, I feel like the authors have peeked inside my home, taking notes of the things I have said, thought, or argued with Huff the Hubs about. Though the authors are women, they do a good job of showing the perspectives of wives and husbands. There have been several times I have stopped to take notes or felt convicted. However, this particular subtitle spoke deep to my soul:

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I realized I have been stressing myself out, trying to make everything spotless, making sure laundry is folded and put away (even if I’m accomplishing this at 11:00 p.m.), cutting my daughter’s pb&j’s with a cookie cutter EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. instead of just cutting it into 4 triangles (because that’s how So-And-So did it on Facebook for her kid), and making every meal Pinterest-perfect, no matter how bad it stressed me out. I was putting so much effort into making sure everything was Instagram-worthy so other people would think I was doing a great job as a wife/mother, that I was alienating my kids and husband.

How many times have I said, “Mommy can’t play right now; I’m busy” or “No, you can’t help. Mommy wants this to look a certain way” or “Can you please just leave me alone so I can read this blog post about being a better communicator?!”

Something had to give. So when I read this, it was like I had seen the light. I decided “Good enough is good enough” will be my new mantra, especially in this season of life. With two little kids in the house, I can’t expect to get everything done nor can I expect it to be perfect. That is too much pressure and too much stress.

As long as my kids and husband are fed, know they’re loved, and have clean underwear (even if its not folded), that’s what matters.

Good enough is good enough.

 

 

 

Have you read this book? What were your thoughts? Have you read a parenting/marriage book that has spoken to you? Share in the comments below!

 

 

 

Mommy Monday

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These last few weeks of pregnancy have been really rough on me. Between just the pure discomfort I’ve felt to the guilt I feel about not being able to be as active with Huff the Tot as I used to be, I’ve just felt incredibly down.

Last week, a dear friend sent me a text:

“FYI, I sent you a book through Amazon.

It’ll be there Monday!”

I was excited! She didn’t tell me what the book was. So Monday, when I opened the package, I saw this:

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I felt a peace come over me. I couldn’t really put my finger on it, but I KNEW I needed to read this book. (Now I know that it was such a God thing).

As I read the Introduction, I started sobbing. This woman was me. Even though she had three kids and I only one (with one on the way) I completely understood her. It was as though she looked inside my mind and heart and wrote down my deepest secrets. One line stuck with me:

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I’ve thought that A LOT these past few weeks. Between the constant Braxton Hicks and the false alarms, there are days I dread hearing the alarm or my daughter calling over the monitor, “Mommy! I awake!” There are days I want to call in sick, but Moms don’t have that luxury.

Even though I’ve only read a few chapters of this book, my spirit has been renewed and I’m feeling like there is hope when I couldn’t even see the possibility of it before.

If you’re a young momma that needs to feel like she’s not alone in her struggles or an older momma that wants to help out the new generation of mothers, I would definitely read this book!

You can get it here!

Have you ever read this book? What did you think? Do you have a book you’d recommend to a momma? Share int he comments below!

Fan Girl Friday

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Happy Friday, y’all! With the impending arrival of Huff the Babe, I’ve been slacking a lot on my bog-writing duties. But, I couldn’t let another week go by without sharing some awesomely geeky delights for you!

 

Even though its barely March, I’m already thinking ahead to Mother’s Day. I’m thinking I need to tell Huff the Hubs that my Littles need to get this for their momma:

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Isn’t it so cute?! Perpetual Kid really knows the way to a momma’s heart!

 

Around this house, there are about five things that Huff the Tot absolutely loves. And one of those things is Pete the Cat! So imagine my delight when I read that Pete will be starring in his very own show!

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The release date is still TBA, but the creator of Phineas and Ferb has already been named as the show’s director! P and F is a hilarious show, so hopefully Pete will be a great one as well!

 

I’ve got a long list of books to read on Goodreads that hasn’t really been touched in the past 6 months. Because, toddler. And now, one of my “Books to Read” is about to be made into a movie! Miss Peregrine’s School for Peculiar Children has always piqued my interest, and seeing that Tim Burton is set to direct the film adaptation, I’m feeling the need to read this book!

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Here is a brief synopsis from IMBD: “When a teen (Asa Butterfield) visits a magical place known as Miss Peregrine’s School for Peculiar Children, he learns that his new friends have special powers and powerful enemies.” The film comes out September 30th so I better get to reading!

 

Easter is only three weeks away! Can you believe it?! It seems like yesterday we were decorating the Christmas tree! I love the tradition of Easter baskets and I’m REALLY hoping I get one of these in mine:

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Its a chocolate Cumberbunny! A chocolatier over in Europe has crafted these Sherlockian sweets just in time for Easter! They’re around $70, so they’d better taste as good as they look!

 

Fan Girl Friday

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Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiittttt’s Friday! This week has kind of stunk it up big time, so I’m going to bring some geeky goodies that will warm your insides! And today is all about someone very near and dear to my heart—Harry Potter. Even though its been more than 10 years since the first Harry Potter book came out, the magic of it lives on. That is why today’s FGF is all about The Boy Who Lived!

This week, the fully illustrated versions of Harry Potter hit stores! They’re a wee bit taller and wider than the versions we’re used to, but they look fantastic! I REALLY want a copy of all of them! Just check out the beautiful artwork:

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Imma need these in my life.

This Christmas we can all leave our Muggle celebrations behind and travel to our home away from home, Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. I’m so not joking. Now that the Harry Potter Studio Tour has opened up in England, the genius folks have now opened up the Great Hall for wizards and Muggles alike to break bread and down a draught of butterbeer!

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That’s right! For only $375, you can have a Christmas feast inside the Great Hall!

And, if that isn’t “Potterhead”enough for you, you can actually LIVE in the Great Hall. Well, kinda. The school that was used to film the first three HP movies has now been renovated into apartments and town homes!

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You can rent out a flat and throw a party in the Great Hall! Be sure to book The Weird Sisters; they know how to rock.

When the HP films were coming out, I checked MuggleNet.com just about every eingle day for updates and behind the scenes pics. Now, they are doing something so awesome, I seriously got goosebumps when I read about it. They have started a new movement called ‘Potter It Forward’. This is when you go to your local library and leave notes about your own experience with the magical world of JK Rowling for future Potterheads to enjoy! Like this:

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The movement has also taken to Twitter using: #PotterItForward. I love this!

And, last but not least, carry your love of everything Potter right around your neck with this beautiful Deathly Hallows-inspired accessory:

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And remember if someone asks you, “You’re still obsessed with that?” you are obligated to reply with a soft, “Always.”

Happy fangirling!