8/18/2014

Easy Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas

Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas
Yummy chicken fajitas!
I love my slow cooker, if that isn't already obvious.  I'm a busy, busy person and my slow cooker gives me some extra time in my day instead of slaving over the stove.

I shared my favorite Slow Cooker Chicken Fajitas over at Plucky's Second Thought.  Why not take a look?
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8/16/2014

0-3 Months Favorite Baby Items

Awwww.  It's so sad (and, okay, also exciting).  My baby girl turned three months old on August 2nd (yes it really is August guys).  So, I know many of you are rounding up last minute school supplies or maybe your little (or not so little) ones are already back in school.

I was just thinking about some of my favorite things so far with kiddo #3.  I've discovered many new baby items that I wish I'd known about before!  We all know that diapers and wipes and somewhere for baby to sleep are essential, so let's skip those things and talk about some other great baby items for your baby from newborn to three months.


0-3 Month Essentials & Favorites

One through five are not affiliate links of any sort.  They're simply links to Amazon for the exact item which I use, except for the ring sling.  I made my own ring sling.

1. Baby Trend Sit N Stand Ultra Stroller

I absolutely adore my stroller.  I posted about getting one back in February, before Luna was born, and I have been thrilled with it, just as I expected I would be.  It's absolutely perfect for my preschooler and infant combination, since my 4 year-old likes to get in and out.  If you want to know more about the Sit N Stand's features, feel free to read my original post recommending it.

2. Bright Starts Bouncer

We have this exact bouncer.  My daughter absolutely loves it.  I stopped putting batteries in it after the second time someone took her out of it and didn't turn it off, so the batteries died the same day they were put in.  

She likes the activity bar that you can attach to it and I often clip other colorful toys onto it.  Plus, it's a great way for her to get in some kicking action.  She kicks her leg  to bounce herself.

While we loved the swing the first few weeks (and still use it 1-2x a day), the bouncer is much more portable and she seems to like it best.

3. Ring Sling

I am so sad I didn't know about babywearing with my first baby.  However, I'm so glad I've discovered it this time around.  I made my own ring sling for around $15, but this is a link to an Amazon search for ring slings.

You can also search Google for some smaller businesses that sell ring slings or look on Etsy.

Either way, I highly recommend one!  They are easy to use, versatile, great for nursing in (especially in public), and will allow you some hands-free cuddling and nursing time.

4. Munckin Cleaning Brush Set

All you Dr. Brown's lovin' mommas out there (sorry, I'm not one of them) will be really excited about this.  I have heard lots of moms recommend Dr. Brown's bottles, but I personally think they look like a nightmare so I've never used them.  

They have that long straw-like tube, that is apparently impossible to clean without the brush that comes with the bottles.  

You can buy replacement brushes (~$5) from Dr. Brown's, but I've never seen them in store.  On the other hand, I purchased this Munchkin cleaning brush set at Wal Mart for about $4.  It has 2 nipple brushes, 1 valve and 1 spout brush.  

How awesome, right?

These are also really great for cleaning breast pump parts.

5. Baby Trend Play Yard (Pack N Play)

My wonderful father bought me this as a baby shower gift.  It's absolutely amazing!

With our first baby, we used a pack n play almost never.  We lived in a single story apartment, briefly shared a room as a family at my mother in law's, and lived in a two bedroom trailer during my son's infancy/early toddler years.  There was rarely a need for him to be in the pack n play.

However, we now live in a two story home.  We bed share with our daughter, but she does still have a crib and pack n play.  The pack n play is downstairs for easy access for diaper changes and daytime naps.

Luna has just started noticing the giraffes hanging from the canopy, and she loves to stare at them.  The storage attachment on the front holds wipes and diapers, and then still has room for other essentials (like baby powder or lotion) and there's a pouch on the side I use for her dirty clothes!

6. Diapers.com

Now, I used Diapers.com one time with my first baby because new customers can save $10 off their first case of diapers (use code:  HEYMAMA) and free 1-2 day delivery at $49.

However, I never realized how fantastic Diapers.com was until I gave it a go this time around.

After I finally ran out of diapers from my husband's pre-baby diaper party, I looked to Diapers.com for my diapering needs.  There's always a coupon code to be had or a sale to take advantage of.  Also, you get discounts for autoshipping!

You can set up an auto shipment for every 1-16 weeks or every 6 or 8 months.  I get an auto shipment every 4 weeks.  It's fantastic that I never have to worry about running to the store to buy diapers or wipes, and they come right to my door monthly.  Convenient and I'm not spending more than I would buying them at the store!

Actually, I've always saved money thanks to discounts, sales, and coupon codes.  How awesome is that!

If you use my referral code, you can get 20% off your first order at Diapers.com or any of the other Familyhood sites, except BarSoap.  And I will get $5 credit toward my future orders.  Use code AMAN90535 at check out.

They're also having a sale on breastfeeding related items this month, so go check them out!

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8/12/2014

14 Quick Breastfeeding Facts

1.  Human milk can be sold for anywhere between $1 and $10 or more on the internet and to at least one legitimate milk bank.

2. Breast milk sprays out of many holes on the nipple.  Hello breast milk sprinkler!
3. Around 75% of moms produce more milk with their right breast.
4. Breast size has nothing to do with milk production.
5. Breastfeeding and being breastfed both reduce the risk of breast cancer.
6. Breast milk adapts and changes as baby gets older and may even vary from day to day.
7. Breastfed babies have a lower risk of SIDS.
8. Mothers can have let down (the reflexive flow of milk) from seeing baby, hearing baby cry, thinking about baby, thinking about breastfeeding or, sometimes, for no reason at all...not just when nursing.
9. On average, breastfeeding moms get more sleep than formula feeding moms.
10. Your breast milk has a distinct scent that baby can detect.
11. Almost 75% of breastfeeding (or pumping) moms seek outside help, such as a lactation consultant or support from La Leche League.
12. Starting your period or hormonal birth control can decrease your milk supply.
14. Lecithin supplements can help with clogged milk ducts.


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8/04/2014

Back to Breast: My Journey Back to Breastfeeding #worldbreastfeedingweek

Ahhh! Where have I been?

Oh. You know. Around.

I know I've been very absent the past few weeks and I could work up a million (totally legit) excuses, but let's just move on, shall we? And let's get to celebrating World Breastfeeding Week, August 1-7 2014.

I mentioned in the past that I was exclusively pumping for my daughter, as I did for my first child. This was something I was doing by choice, rather than something I was forced to do, as some moms are.

However, after some self-reflection, experiencing the desire to return to nursing my daughter, and stumbling across some great breastfeeding bloggers (ahem, The Badass Breastfeeder)...

Well, I came to some conclusions. I was pretty ashamed of what I came to realize.

My Self-Imposed Breastfeeding Obstacles

  1. I was scared.
  2. I thought exclusively pumping was what I wanted, but really it was more about the following realizations...
  3. I was trying to convenience everyone else, and I thought breastfeeding was going to somehow inconvenience others.
  4. I didn't want to offend anyone by breastfeeding my daughter in front of them and/or in public.
  5. I had my own insecurities about my body.
I was pissed at myself for letting the fact that breastfeeding, and especially breastfeeding in public, is still so taboo. I was afraid of being judged or, heaven forbid, that someone would be downright nasty with me. I decided, right then and there, that everyone else could screw off. For some reason, I missed the breastfeeding relationship I had with my daughter.

Working Through It

After two months of exclusively pumping for Luna, we returned to nursing. Like the beautiful, amazing baby that she is, we returned like bottles had never been a thing and breastfeeding was all she'd ever known. Obviously, I'm more than blessed because many, many women struggle to get that first latch or struggle with nipple confusion and bottle preference later in breastfeeding.

This isn't me bragging that I didn't have to suffer through that. This is me joyously celebrating that I did not have to experience the disappointment that surely would have ensued had I made the decision to return Luna to the breast and she refused. I'm sure I would have been crushed.

Am I still adjusting? Yes. Do I still feel insecure at times? Of course. However, I'm not about to be bullied into denying myself or my daughter this experience.

Happy World Breastfeeding Week everyone!
What struggles have you experienced breastfeeding? Can you relate to any of my self-imposed struggles?


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7/16/2014

6 Ice Cream Recipes to Celebrate National Ice Cream Month

Did you know that July is National Ice Cream Month?

Well, you do now!
National Ice Cream Month Recipes

Ice cream is often a guilty pleasure of mine (and my husband's). I even made an ice cream sandwich birthday cake for Gabe's fourth birthday party this year.

Obviously, we like ice cream at this house.

To celebrate National Ice Cream Month, or just because you love ice cream, why not try one of these amazing ice cream recipes!

1. Blueberry Muffin Ice Cream

from Julia at Fat Girl Trapped in a Skinny Body.  (This is an absolute must try for me!  ASAP!)

2. One Ingredient Ice Cream

a sure to be yummy and healthy ice cream variation from Andrew Olsen at the One Ingredient Chef.

3. Chocolate Chip Cookie Crunch & Peppermint Ice Cream

Yum!  My kiddo loves peppermint ice cream!  This recipe is from The Nest.

4. Ice Cream Cupcakes

OMG!  These are cute, already portioned, and simpy perfect!  From The Cupcake Daily Blog.

5. Fried Ice Cream

Uhm, yum!  Even I could make this!  Thank you Miriam at Overtime Cook!

6. Strawberry Cheesecake Icream

Oh, how I love cheesecake.  And ice cream.  Why not put them together?! From Tiffany at Creme De La Crumb.

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