Mommy Monday

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Well, Momma, we survived Thanksgiving! Now the holiday season has kicked into full gear and we’re only four days away from December. I know, I get a little {more} panicky and anxiety-ridden during this time, too.

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Don’t freak out! Its going to be okay. We just have to be sure to take care of ourselves even more over the next few weeks. Don’t know where to start? I have a some great tips that have helped me and a few that I’m going to try this year as well!

 

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Write It Down

I love writing lists. If I can write down all the things that I need to get done, with dates attached to them, it helps me to calm down because I can see that I actually have time to do them all. And if I don’t then I…

 

Ask For Help/Delegate

Repeat after me: “I do not have to do it all.” You do not have to wrap every single present yourself. You do not have to make every person in your family a handmade gift. You do not have to go shopping for every person either. You know that list you made? Cut it in half and give some of it to your husband or kids! If that doesn’t work for you, then try my next tip!

 

Just Say No

December is a crazy-busy month just with the holidays. But then throw in all the “extras”–Christmas pageants, Santa-related events, parties–and its just gets too hectic. Think about the traditions and events that are important to you and your family and then forget about the rest. If an event is going to cause you more stress and anxiety by going then DO. NOT. GO.

 

Eat Right

Some of my favorite foods come around this time of year and I am already ready to eat copious amounts of them. Having said that, something I’ve found is if I eat too many sweets I end up feeling sluggish, cranky, and have zero motivation. Mix that with the shorter amount of sunlight and its a recipe for seasonal affective disorder. A simple rule I follow when at parties and potlucks is eating what only comes around in December. For example, my mom makes amazing cookies, but she makes them at other times throughout the year and not just at Christmas so I usually skip those at the holidays. But her rum cake? She only makes that around Christmas/New Year’s so you better believe I’m digging into that! I also try to eat as healthily as I can about 80% of the time so the other 20% I can indulge. Its a great way to take care of my basic nutritional needs while also having some wiggle room.

 

Take a Vitamin

Its no secret that stress can lower your immune system, but mix that with the chilly weather and being cooped up indoors most of the day and you’ve got all the ingredients for catching a cold. Talk with your doctor about what supplements could be good for keeping your immune system in fighting shape! Around this time of year, I take a B-vitamin supplement in the mornings to help me have energy and keep the sickness away!

 

Slow Down

The hustle and bustle of the holiday season can make a person feel like they’re constantly running. When we do this, we end up feeling spread too thin, getting irritable, and we start to resemble The Grinch. Slow down. Schedule breaks. How do you like to recharge your batteries? Do you like taking bubbles baths? Maybe watching a cheesy Hallmark movie is your bag. Or maybe you feel better after talking with your bestie. Whatever it is that you do to relax, be sure you do it!

 

What about you? What are some things you do around this time of year to make sure you’re not feeling frazzled? Share in the comments below!

 

 

I Went To Disney With Small Kids, Here’s What I Learned…

Last week, Huff the Hubs, the kids, and my in-laws went to Disney World. It was a magical (and exhausting) time! I tried to prepare for the trip as best I could, knowing that I’d basically have to bring our entire house with us and somehow make it fit onto a stroller while we walked around the parks.

A lot of knowledge gained through a Disney vacation is acquired through trial and error. So I’m going to share my accomplishments and failures so you can have the best Disney vacay ever!

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Make “Park Bags” In Advance

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Listen to me: you are going to want to fall into bed AS SOON as you get back to the hotel. You are not going to want to reorganize a diaper bag/backpack when your back is aching and you have the stench of sweat and sunblock. Plan ahead! I got 2-gallon zip top bags and filled them with what I thought we would need while we were at the park: diapers, baby wipes, a change of clothes for each kid, medications (like Tylenol, Benadryl etc.), and whatever else you think you may need.

 

Buy “Souvenirs” For The Kids Before You Leave

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Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying to buy a “Walt Disney World” magnet before you go. What I’m saying is, your kids will ask for everything–and I mean eeeeeverything–in sight while you’re at the parks to the point where you will start trying to hide their eyes from the souvenir peddlers on the street because they will be like flies on honey with that stuff. My advice is: go to Dollar Tree and buy a few little figures of Mickey and pals to hand to your little ones when they want something. Its cheaper, its faster, and they have something in their hands to keep them busy during those long waits in ride lines. Also, if you plan on staying until the fireworks show, grab a bunch of glow sticks while you’re at DT! They even have Disney-themed ones! Such a money-saver (the glow stuff at DW was like $12 and up!) and you can splurge on something else later!

 

Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate!

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I didn’t really drink water while we were there (unless I got it at the resort because, filtered water). Huff the Hubs had a Camelbak, but he used tap water and it was just too funky-tasting for me. Plus, I needed caffeine because I was sooooo sleep-deprived. But, I should’ve just sucked it up and drank the funk water. Or bought a 24-pack of water bottles and taken those to the park. I ended up get a heat rash because I was under hydrated. Its the worst. Don’t be like me. Just drink some water every hour to avoid dehydration and all the crappy symptoms.

 

Plan Rest Days

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If I could do it over again, I would’ve planned two extra days just so we’d have time to rest at the hotel in between going to the parks. We should’ve done a rest day every other day, but we only had a limited time and limited budget. Next time, though, we’re splurging for more days so we can rest and not be so crabby/sleep-deprived.

 

Pack Snacks 

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Even if you’re doing the Disney Dining Plan, you’re going to want to pack snacks for your kids. You’re not going to want to spend your precious snack credits on a Danimals yogurt you could get at home–you’re going to want to use those for a Mickey-shaped cake pop, yo! Go Go Squeeze applesauce pouches, Goldfish crackers (they even have Mickey Mouse-shaped ones!), and peanut butter crackers were our saving graces during this trip.

 

DO NOT JUST “WING IT”

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Before we left, I kept seeing all these posts about planning your Disney World day. I was like, “I’m not going to plan out every second of our day! I just want it to be a leisurely thing.”

That was the dumbest decision I have ever made, second only to the time I decided to have my baby shower TWO days after giving birth.

You NEED a plan. You need to know who wants to ride what, which characters are where, and how you’re going to execute all of it. I though it would take the fun out of it, but as it turns out, having a plan makes things run so much smoother and you’ll be a lot less stressed if you do.

 

Have you ever been to Disney World/Disneyland with little ones? What advice would you add to the list? Share in the comments below!

Mommy Monday

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Hey y’all! Halloween is officially over so we can now start focusing on Christmas!

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Oh wait. We still have to do Thanksgiving. My bad.

Don’t get me wrong, Thanksgiving is an okay holiday…but its not my favorite. Honestly, I just see the third Thursday in November as a hurdle to Christmas. But, I DO like how I can weave in little lessons here and there during the Thanksgiving season to help my kiddos (and myself) grasp the concept of thankfulness and having a grateful heart. Need some help in how you can teach your kiddos thankfulness this season? I gotchu, girl. Or should I say, Pinterest has you, girl.

 

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Coffee Cups and Crayons has a great printable you can download to have your older kids (and you and your hubby!) fill out every day in November to help you remember that even the simplest of things can be appreciated! By day ten, you typically have to start really looking at the little things in your life that you can be grateful for!

 

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Not Consumed Ministries has compiled a list of children’s books that help teach thankfulness! You can see the list here!

 

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The Fervent Mama offers a printable pack full of thankfulness activities for kids including memory verses about gratitude!

 

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Another site full of book recommendations about gratitude is Babies to Bookworms!

 

What is one of your family’s favorite thankfulness activities? How do you teach gratefulness to your children? Share in the comments below!

Mommy Monday

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Halloween is in two days, witches! Are you ready? Got your kids’ costumes all done? Ready to pilfer through their treats to find the stuff YOU want?

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Some people may think that taking candy from your kids’ Halloween bucket is wrong. I think its a great way to teach your kids about LIFE. The folks over at The Holderness Family Vlog feel me!

 

Hashtag Mommy Tax All Day.

 

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Mommy Monday

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Guys. Halloween is next week. NEXT. WEEK. Do you have your kid’s costume(s) yet? If you don’t–and you don’t want to pick through the piddly few that are left at Target or Walmart, I got you! I’ve looked all over the interwebs to find simple, quick DIY costumes you can make in a pinch!

 

Weatherman/woman

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This one is SUPER easy. Just dress your kiddo up in their Sunday best, tape some paper to them, spike their hair, and find a broken umbrella (we all have one). Bam!–instant weatherperson.

 

Clark Kent/Superman

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Again, this one is super easy! Most little boys have a super hero shirt of some sort; just put a button-up shirt over it and you’ve got yourself a pint-size superhero!

 

Painter

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Not only is this one clever, but its crazy-simple! A small piece of posterboard and a paint brush! That’s all you need!

 

Basket of Laundry

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I mean, might as well dress the kids up as laundry seeing as how we all pretty much live in a perpetual state of washing/drying/folding!

 

Birthday Present

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We all have spare bags laying around somewhere in our homes. Cut a hole in the bottom and this funny costume is DONE!

 

Do you have an idea for a super simple costume? Share in the comments below!

 

Mommy Monday

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As moms, we sacrifice a lot. We go without so our children can have and sometimes its hard to see the things we gain because we’re so focused on what we’ve lost. I saw a video the other day that really hit home and helped me examine my heart and priorities. Take a watch, Mommas, and remember that you’ve gained SO. VERY. MUCH.