True life: I have a threenager

When they say terrible twos, I think they mean terrifyingly terrible three’s- threenager if you will. Most of them can somewhat get their point across, but their vocabulary is still somewhat weak. They almost always know what they want and if they don’t get it right away, the meltdown from hell usually occurs. Climbing on the refrigerator like Spiderman, screaming to the point of neighbors asking if we are okay kind of meltdown. Or then if they try to talk to you and you don’t understand what they are saying, forget it. You might as well just hide and get some noise cancelling headphones. Seriously, having a toddler is like having a blender without a lid.

Three-year-olds are just as curious and test their boundaries like their “terrible twos” counterparts, but this time, they do it with attitude and stubbornness. My strong-willed toddler has been tough from the get-go- always testing her limits and when she does, it’s not pretty. She can go from 0-100 within seconds, vice versa. I noticed that distraction works best with her, but she definitely puts a strain on our marriage. Woof. So hard to discipline a defiant toddler. She understands consequences, but not doesn’t full grasp the concept.

Having 2 kids at the ages of 1 and 3 is actually heaven and hell. I love them to death and I want nothing more than to spend time with them, but I feel so guilty because sometimes I want to run far away from my house and when I’m gone sometimes I don’t even miss them. And that’s okay. When my mom tank is empty, watch out. And when it’s empty, her tantrums seem to be amplified. Screaming is a huge trigger for me. I can’t stand when she screams at the top of her lungs and then Hudson is scared and he wants me but really Jules is begging for attention and she probably needs it the most. Let’s be honest, all 3 years old think the whole world only exists for them and no one else. When they want something, they want it now. When they talk, they expect you to understand everything they are saying.

A temper tantrum is the emotional equivalent of a summer storm – sudden and sometimes fierce, but often over as quickly as it starts. One minute you and your child are enjoying your dinner in a restaurant, the next she’s whimpering, whining, and then screaming to go home.

When tantrums happen, they happen with a vengeance. I know I’m not alone saying this either, but my toddler is unbelievably defiant and loves to test her limits, especially now that she has a brother. She wants to play with her dollhouse or her toys, but Hudson is usually her shadow and wants to do everything she does. Cue the hitting because Juliana thinks that these are her toys and her toys only. Although, she does okay at daycare with sharing. She is dying for attention and when I am home alone, I feel like I can’t even give either of them attention because the 2 of them are like bullets on steroids. She is using the potty and he is trying to play in the potty. I try to go potty and the 2 of them are my feet. Or if I do try to use the bathroom then I hear screaming and Hudson is climbing onto the couch about to dive head first off. She is a great big sister, but when she is tired, overtired, hungry, or hot, WATCH OUT WORLD.

Threenagers can be tough to parent, make you weary, and zap you of all of your patience and energy. But on the flip side, this time can be so completely rewarding. As a threenager’s independence blooms so does their vocabulary, and you sometimes hear lovely things like, “You’re my best friend mommy, I love you soooo much, I want to keep you forever! –Huffington Post

Juliana talks and talks and talks and talks some more. There really is no peace and quiet, but I do make sure I always reciprocate conversation and answer EVERY single question. My favorite thing in the world is when she says to me, “I love you in the world.” OR when she says a lot of the same things that I say like “Take a deep breath,” “You are beautiful or I am beautiful,” Hudsie, I love you baby boy.” Threenagers are like sponges and they soak up everything you say. As tough and defiant as she can be, she has a heart of gold and my job is her mama is to foster that heart and tap into the love. I want her to spill love and kindness all over the world.

I am petrified to raise her in today’s world. I want to keep her locked up in my house with Hudson forever because the real world is freakin’ scary enough for me. I don’t want her heart and mind to be swayed or molded into something bad and I can only protect her for so long. Threenagers are so pure and innocent and full of life. They love everyone and are so curious about their surroundings and life.

My favorite thing I do with Juliana is look in the mirror and say how beautiful I am. It goes against my reflex because I usually do the opposite, but because she is my little shadow and thinks I am her hero even when I lose my shit at 3am, she is internalizing everything I say. I want her to grow up to be a strong, independent and confident woman and so many of us trash talk ourselves and we don’t even realize it…even under our breath or to our significant others. I also tell her about 50 times a day how beautiful she is. She will often say throughout the day, “Mama, I am beautiful.”

Stay beautiful baby.

Threenagers are tougher than terrible twos because they are finally realizing they are their own person and they are saying it in a BIG way.

Three-year-olds have no sense of time. They can focus, but only on what they want to focus on. They have big, strong emotions and they are starting to express them, but they get overwhelmed by them, too. The trouble comes in, says Klein, “when you think that you’re speaking to a very reasonable human being. Verbally, they sound older than they are.

Here are a few tips and tricks I have learned, but also found on other blogs and websites that I thought were worth sharing and helped:

  1. Make sure everyone’s, including yourself, needs are being met- SELF-CARE. Take time for you and don’t feel guilty. These are not selfish things, as they will give you more energy for your kids.
  2. Know your child and adjust as needed- Really pay attention to their temperament and personality. Are they introverted or extroverted? Calm or not? Strong-willed or cautious? What kind of behavior strategies to they respond to?
  3. Change your point of view to theirs- What are they thinking? They are not adults, even if they acted like spoiled teenagers, they are still babies.
  4. Answer EVERY why question or question- This is a critical learning age; emotional intelligence and empathy develops around this age too. Explain in detail why something might be unsafe or why someone is in a wheelchair, etc.
  5. Teach self-control and turn taking- This is a tough age because almost all threenagers want it NOW and don’t understand how to wait. Juliana doesn’t respond to a timer, but she will respond to helping me do something “in the meantime.” For example, she needed a cup from the counter, but I was nursing Hudson. She was screaming and throwing herself on the floor and I had her get me napkin quick and then praised her for a great job helping, but also told her I was so proud of her for waiting because Mommy needed to finish feeding Hudson. She understands and the more you explain, the better they understand and reason.
  6. ROUTINE is so important. Life can be hectic- rushing in the mornings to get the kids ready for daycare, get them dressed, get breakfast, change their clothes a few more times, coffee spilling, etc. But with routine, it can alleviate stress from mom, dad, and the kids because we know what to expect. Things may not always go as planned, but if you have a basic routine, it helps with regularity and communication.
  7. Adjust your expectations of behavior- Remember threenagers are THREE! They are still babies and really don’t mean any harm. They are developing into their own person and we need to let them. Let them ask, explore and fly. Expect meltdowns.
  8. PLAN PLAN PLAN- This is just like routine. I always plan the night before- I pack their lunches, mine, get all of our clothes picked out, etc. Sometimes I even get breakfast out and ready or at least write it down. I always need to be one step ahead, but it helps keep us in routine.
  9. Give choices and try to let them be in control- In the middle of a meltdown, Juliana doesn’t respond to tons of people talking or loving- she wants to be left alone to scream while her eyes roll back. The art of distraction sometimes works, but I noticed that after a meltdown or RIGHT before it, if I give a choice or that control- would you rather do this or that- sometimes she snaps out of it.
  10. Allow yourself to laugh- Don’t take this too seriously. Don’t laugh at them, but allow yourself to have a sense of humor a little or you will most likely lose your shit more. Nothing is more trying than a screaming toddler who doesn’t know what they want.
  11. Allow yourself to cool off- have calming strategies for yourself. If you lose your cool every time, your threenager learns that behavior. Always reconnect with your child after the meltdown- you or them!

Some books I found helpful-

How Toddlers Thrive: What Parents Can Do Today for Children Ages 2-5 to Plant the Seeds of Lifelong Success

The Honest Toddler: A Child’s Guide to Parenting

Toddlers Are A**holes: It’s Not Your Fault

The Happiest Toddler on the Block: How to Eliminate Tantrums and Raise a Patient, Respectful, and Cooperative One- to Four-Year-Old: Revised Edition

 

Keto Shopping List

Veggies-

Asparagus

Avocado

Bell Peppers

Broccoli

Brussel Sprouts

Cabbage

Cauliflower

Celery

Cucumbers

Edameme

Eggplant

ANY greens

Mushrooms

Lettuce

Spaghetti Squash

Spinach

Squash

Sweet potatoes (enjoy in moderation because can get high in carbs, but they are complex carbs. Good to enjoy after a workout)

Zucchini

*Peas and Carrots have a lot of sugar

Fruits

Strawberries

Blueberries

Raspberries

Green apples

*You can add these to a smoothie too

Dairy

Heavy whipping cream

Avocado oil mayonnaise (Primal Kitchen or Sir Kensington brand)

Full fat/full cream yogurt (plain)

Shredded mozzarella or cheddar (doesn’t have to be shredded)

Parmesan cheese

Kerrygold irish butter

Cream cheese (don’t get low fat)

Egg whites (You can buy at Costco)

Meats/Seafood

Grass fed beef

Lean organic ground turkey

Organic chicken

Turkey bacon

Lean ground sausage (organic or grass fed)

Tuna

Salmon

Chicken salad (canned at Costco)

Scallops

Shrimp

Pantry Items/Other

Macadamia Nuts

Omega PowerCreamer – Made with Grass-fed Organic Ghee, Organic Coconut Oil, MCT Oil 100% C8/C10 | Keto, Paleo, Sugar Free, 10 fl oz (20 servings) Butter Coffee Blend

Avocado Oil

PBfit All-Natural Organic Peanut Butter Powder, 30 Ounce, Peanut Butter Powder from Real Roasted Pressed Peanuts, Good Source of Protein, Organic Ingredients

Hazelnuts

Raw Almonds

Almound Flour

NOW Foods Organic Coconut Flour,16-Ounce

Baking Powder

Organic Peanut Butter (for those keto cups)

Olive Oil

Viva Naturals 1 Best Selling Certified Organic Cacao Powder from Superior Criollo Beans, 1 LB Bag

Black coffee (Try to find low acid- Puroast Low Acid Coffee House Blend Drip Grind, 2.5-Pound Bag)

Tea

All Spices

Pesto Sauce (I love the Costco one)

Truvia/Stevia

NOW Foods Erythritol Natural Sweetener, 1 lb

Swerve Sweetener, Granular, 12 Ounce

Dark Chocolate 86% and up

Lemon Garlic Dressing (Chosen Foods) *Look for high fat dressings

Salsa (low carb, low sugar)

Liquid Aminos 16 oz. 16 Ounces

Any Primal Kitchen salad dressing- look for high fat, low carb, no sugar and make sure ingredients are real and recognizable. Primal Kitchen – Whole 30 Kit | Mayo, Chipotle Lime Mayo, Extra Virgin Avocado Oil, Greek Vinaigrette and Marinade, Ranch Dressing

Unsweetened almond milk

Snack ideas

Kirkland protein bars (check the carb, fiber, sugar and protein nutrition. For net carbs, subtract the fiber from carbs)

Perfect Keto Chocolate Protein Powder: Collagen Peptides Grassfed low Carb Keto Drink Supplement With MCT Oil Powder – Best as Keto Drink Creamer or added to Ketogenic Diet Snacks. Paleo & Gluten Free

Perfect Keto Protein Powder Vanilla: Grass Fed Collagen Peptides Low Carb Keto Drink Supplement With MCT Oil Powder – Best as Keto Drink Creamer or added to Ketogenic Diet Snacks. Paleo & Gluten Free

Quest Bars

ONE bars (ONE Protein Bar – Peanut Butter PieONE Protein Bar, Maple Glazed Doughnut, 12 Pack, Gluten-Free Protein Bar with High Protein (20g) and Low Sugar (1g), Guilt Free Snacking for Healthy Diets)

ChocZero’s Keto Bark, Dark Chocolate Almonds with Sea Salt. 100% Stone-Ground, Sugar Free, Low Carb. No Sugar Alcohols, No Artificial Sweeteners, All Natural, Non-GMO (2 boxes, 6 bars/each)

Plain full fat yogurt with sugar free cheesecake or any flavor pudding pack (Costco MAPLE HILL is yum)

Cucumbers with lemon garlic dressing or any seasoning/spice

Keto cups- ½ cup PB, ½ cup coconut oil, 1 packet stevia in sauce pan until liquid. Pour into cupcake liners in muffin tin, freeze for a few minutes. Melt dark chocolate (86% or up) and pour over PB

Lemon/Any flavor mousse- 2 cups heavy whipping cream and 1 packet of any flavor sugar free pudding. Use mixer and mix! Refrigerate and enjoy (I love the sugar free chocolate, cheesecake, lemon and banana cream)

Cut and cube sweet potatoes on baking sheet and sprinkle with olive oil, himilayan sea salt, pepper, cinnamon and bake at 400 for 40 minutes

Turkey jerky/Beef Jerky Ayoba-Yo Biltong. Grass Fed and Air Dried Beef Snack. Better than Jerky. Tender Steak Cuts Made with Premium Meat. Sugar & Gluten Free. 2 Ounce

Raw Almonds (you can add some dark chocolate but needs to be 86% or up)

Any veggies

Green apple with Powdered peanut butter or cinnamon

Plain full fat yogurt with powdered PB

1 Boiled egg or boiled egg whites

Microwave some egg whites and add some spices (2 minutes, might need more). You can add lean ham too!

AVOID—

Frozen meals/dinners, soda, sugar, empty nutrition like popcorn, rice cakes, processed foods, alcohol, pasta, white grains, breads, candy, milk chocolate, juices, ice cream, anything fried, white potatoes, rice

Amazon Prime Deals!

Amazon Brand – Mama Bear Organic Baby Food Pouch, Stage 2, Mango Apple Carrot Peach, 4 Ounce Pouch (Pack of 12)

Bose QuietComfort 25 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones for Apple devices – Black (wired, 3.5mm)

Instant Pot DUO60 6 Qt 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, Slow Cooker, Rice Cooker, Steamer, Sauté, Yogurt Maker and Warmer

Vitamix Explorian Blender, Professional-Grade, 64 oz. Container, Black (Certified Refurbished)

Ninja Professional 72oz Countertop Blender with 1000-Watt Base and Total Crushing Technology for Smoothies, Ice and Frozen Fruit (BL610), Black

Amazon Cloud Cam Security Camera, Works with Alexa

OneOdio Kids Safe Headphones – 85dB Volume Limited Headsets for Kids, Durable, Adjustable, Lightweight Headphones with 3.5mm Audio Jack, Christmas and Birthday Gift for Children and Girls. (Pink)

Summer Infant 3D Lite Convenience Stroller – Black

Safety 1st Grow and Go 3-in-1 Convertible Car Seat, Harvest Moon

SmartyPants Kids Complete Daily Gummy Vitamins: Gluten Free, Multivitamin & Omega 3 Fish Oil (DHA/EPA Fatty Acids), Iodine Supplement, Methyl B12, Vitamin D3, Non-GMO, 120 count (30 Day Supply)

Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote | Streaming Media Player

23andMe DNA Test – Health + Ancestry Personal Genetic Service – 75+ Online Reports – includes at-home saliva collection kit

USA Toyz Kinetic Sand Toys – 23 Pc Kinetic Sand Molds Kinetic Sand Kit w/ Play Sand Molds + 5 Kinetic Sand Art Tools for Magic Sand Brookstone and More

Philips HD9220/28 Viva Airfryer (1.8lb/2.75qt), Black Fryer

Philips Sonicare HealthyWhite+ electric rechargeable toothbrush, HX8911

Summer Infant My Size Potty – Training Toilet for Toddler Boys & Girls – with Flushing Sounds and Wipe Dispenser

Cricut Explore Air 2, Rose Bundle

Perfect Bar Whole Food Organic Protein Bar, Gluten Free Dark Chocolate Chip Peanut Butter with Sea Salt, 2.3 Oz Bar (Pack of 8)

Etekcity Digital Kitchen Scale Multifunction Food Scale, 11 lb 5 kg, Silver, Stainless Steel (Batteries Included)

Swerve Sweetener, Confectioners, 12 oz

Enther Meal Prep Containers [20 Pack] 3 Compartment with Lids, Food Storage Bento Box | BPA Free | Stackable | Reusable Lunch Boxes, Microwave/Dishwasher/Freezer Safe,Portion Control (36 oz)

 

Dumping friends

You always hear about getting dumped in relationships, but you hardly hear about getting dumped or dumped friends in friendships. Life can be overwhelming and fast-paced and of you get sucked up in the toxicity of some people or some experiences, you might drown. There comes a time in your life where it’s time to let go of those toxic friendships. Good riddance. You can try and try to be a good friend, good listener, etc, but just like in a romantic relationship, everyone of us has a different perception and that’s okay. But if you start to misunderstand perceptions or your lives start to drift away from each other, chances are you start to lose touch/fade out/ move on in a whole other direction and that’s okay too. If the relationship is strong enough to withhold a tough season, awesome. They are true friends.

Then you have the friends who complain all the time or constantly need attention. That’s completely okay when your perceptions are similar, but if not and the friendship starts becoming more work and more toxic, it’s time to let go. And as we get older, we grow more balls with experience and realize we don’t have time for that.

Weed out the negative, bring on the positive. Its okay to be negative believe me. I’m guilty of it, but when it’s soul sucking or becomes more of a chore, your heart will tell you.

Relationships with kids

I was recently listening to the RISE Together podcast with Rachel and Dave Hollis. As I write this, I am currently running 8 miles trying to do talk to text because I have a million thoughts for this blog post. During this podcast and this especially hard run, I realized dude, I can do this this whole thing called life, this whole thing called marriage, and this whole thing called parenthood. And I tell you all of those things are the hardest but also the most beautiful things in this life.

The one thing that stuck out most to me in the podcast was how to make a relationship work with kids. There are three magic strategies they used and one I took from another book, however they may be different for everyone. The first strategy they mentioned was to come up with five core values that make the relationship work; not “values for you individually because let’s face it, in a marriage it’s the two of you together as one, not coming together individually. Sidenote, I need mega help in my relationship with my husband right now. We have 2 kids ages 1 and 3 and by the grace of God we are all still alive, but my husband and I are really only co-existing. We pass by each other in this season of life, but we aren’t growing anymore. We are drowning in the chaos of everyday life. Develop core values that make your relationship stay afloat, that make you feel happy and excited, and most importantly feel all those feelings, etc. Close your eyes, and imagine being with your husband. Where are you? What are you guys doing? Where are you going? If you recognize that your relationship is dying (and Rachel talks a lot about relationships either grow or die, nothing in between), commit to making a change and wanting this to work. Before you start anything big, try to come up with your own core values with your partner. Some of our core values are quality time with each other/making time, doing little things for each other, and treating each other how we want to be treated. They will look different for everyone.

The second thing that stood out to me was that to make a relationship work when you have kids especially is to start scheduling EVERYTHING from sex to grocery shopping. But the best advice she mentioned was to schedule a weekly review, a quarterly review, and an annual review with your partner. Make time (tapping into one of those core values for us). Owe it to yourself and your partner to make time for each other. For example, for the weekly review, I heard Rachel say that they meet every Sunday night to discuss the week: who will bring the kids to day care, who will bring the kids to school, when are we penciling in time for ourselves and time together, what should we make for dinner on Thursday etc. you get the point. For the quarterly review, check in with your partner every so often- how was the last 3-4 months? How are you? How are we? Can we do something better to help us grow? I also heard Rachel and Dave say to ask yourself if the relationship is growing or dying. Ask your partner if you think you guys are growing and trying to be the best versions of yourself. It all sounds corny, but if you are in a rut like us, hopefully you will try anything. Communication and respect goes along way and with kids and chaos that can often get lost. The annual reviews should happen once or twice a year and they don’t need to be expensive. Plan a weekend getaway with NO kids. Beg your in laws or babysitter. It’s just as important to take care of the relationship as it is to take care of yourself individually.

Another thing I learned and this wasn’t from their amazing podcast, but from the book “Five Languages of Love.” Know your partners love language. The five languages of love that Dr. Chapman talks about are words of affirmation, quality time, receiving gifts, acts of service, and physical touch. Without getting too corny and two in depth about the actual book, I have learned that every individual perceives love differently. For example, my husband speaks the love language of words of affirmation. He likes it when I tell him that he’s doing a good job, that he is a hard worker, that I appreciate him, that he is amazing, etc. However, I speak the love language quality time. I want to spend time with my husband and feel loved. I don’t want to be in the same room as we are both scrolling Instagram or Facebook. I want to know that I am a priority. I want him to schedule spontaneous date nights with no phones. I want to feel like I exist. Howie is always planning and building our future, but he often forgets the present and over the years I started to resent him. Then you add kids and the daily responsibility’s of adulthood and we just co-exist. And when we bicker, we can only see our point of view, not our partners. When you learn your partners love language, life can become much more enjoyable- start trying to speak their language and eventually it will be reciprocated. Don’t get me wrong, this is hard shit. It’s like going against the current and battling all of your reflexes, especially if you’re at a point of resentment or you feel as if you have settled. Just remember that his or her perception of love is most likely totally different than yours. Howie thinks by building a huge barn in our yard and working around the clock makes me happy because he is “securing our future,” but in reality I just want a damn minute with my husband. He can take time off of the firehouse to work on the barn, but he can’t take time off to go to therapy with me or spend some time. Of course now I go into defense mode and immediately shut down and really just give up asking. I don’t want to hear that there is no time or it needs to be planned. I want to feel like a priority. But if I can speak in his language (first- which kills me because I’m the most stubborn person on earth), then eventually he will speak in mine.

Lastly, I learned to treat your partner as a best friend first, then a husband/wife. We tend to treat our friends better than our partners most of the time. We want to go out with friends and laugh and have fun. Personally, I spent most of the time arguing about disciplining the kids, lack of sleep, who gets more time, and who will pick the kids up from daycare with Howie than anything else. It’s soul sucking and it’s exhausting. And when I am exhausted and mentally drained, I suck as a mom and I definitely suck more at being a wife.

From my own personal experience, a strategy that Howie and I are both involved in is couples therapy. Maintaining a romantic relationship/marriage while having kids, especially when they are so young can be difficult and draining. You can either be a team or you can be enemies and a lot of couples aren’t strong enough to make it through. The resentment can build up over the years as you settle with this person and the chaos and it compresses until you just can’t take it anymore. NO couple is perfect and everyone has their own shit, but if you really dig deep and ask if your relationship is growing or dying (Thank you Dave and Rachel Hollis), then you probably have a good idea where you stand in the marriage. As human beings, especially in this day and age, we are all wired to think we have to control the chaos and everything needs to be compartmentalized and perfect, but in reality, we need to learn to embrace the chaos. Life isn’t supposed to be orderly and quiet. And when you have kids, the last thing life can be is orderly and quiet. So if you recognize you need help, seek out a couples counselor; I prefer a doctor with a lot of experience because Howie and I together are fifty shades of hot mess. This can be part of your weekly review or quarterly review. Make it priority because you don’t want the relationship to drown- you want to battle the seasons of chaos together as a team.

If your relationship is worth it and you truly want to spend forever with this person, commit to speaking their language- with the expectation of it not being reciprocated. Honestly, most couples don’t speak the same language and that’s why so many couples get divorced or break up. We get on such a euphoric high  in the beginning of romantic relationships that once we settle into the relationship, that in love shit goes right out the window. Treat the relationship like a person. Sounds weird, but try to treat it like you would treat yourself. Water it and let it grow. Make sure it’s growing and not dying.

I am no expert at relationships AT ALL and Howie and I need help, but join us in this journey. Don’t worry, as I type this he is downstairs in his workaholic state of mind and I am upstairs half naked in bed writing this. We have a ways to go, but I want to be a better wife and I want our relationship to grow instead of die. I have written so many blog posts on how important self-care is. Treat the relationship the same way.

Be better together. And if that’s not enough, do it for your kids. They watch how you interact and this will impact them the rest of their life. Marriage is hard ass work, but it’s worth it.

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Go the FUCK to sleep

Seriously, sleep is overrated, right?! Just tell me yes to make me feel better.

My first born was a terrible sleeper from the womb. She was a cluster feeder and she slept in the middle of our bed in the pack n play bassinet. She was our first so naturally, we didn’t to leave her side, especially since she decided that CAMP BOOB was open 24/7. For the love of God, when you are sleep deprived, you actually say things like, “Go the fuck to sleep,” to a little innocent newborn. We decided to do cry it out balls to the wall at about 14 months and it was the best thing ever. Not in the beginning when her little stubborn cute self would cry for an hour and 55 minutes straight, but each day got better and eventually she became a good sleeper. She is now 3 years old, is the master of stalling, but she sleeps great and just transitioned to a big girl bed. She occasionally has what we think are night terrors- where she wakes up dead out of her sleep screaming, eyes rolling, pretty. much a scene from the Exorcist. She recently developed a fear of bugs so most dreams are about bugs coming out the ceiling. When she wakes up screaming, Hudson wakes up screaming. It’s a sick cycle.

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Hudson, on the other hand, was a great sleeper from the womb. He slept through the night from day 1 until about 7 months old. He slept in the rock n play and I pumped the shit out of my boobs because the kid slept rock solid for over 10 hours without eating. Second kid, I let him sleep. First one, we tend to wake them every 2-3 hours to make sure they would nurse. Then at 7 months, God decided to charge Hudson up like a crazy bull, but only at night. He was never a cluster feeder and his temperament was always so chill. While it still is pretty chill, he turned into a horrible sleeper. I can’t help but blame myself, but here we are, almost 15 months old and I am ready to sleep train, but when he is crying, she wakes up! Lately, he’s been waking up every 3 hours and the only thing to calm him down is nursing. At about 8 months, Hudson transitioned to a crib in our room and around 11 months, he transitioned into his own room in the crib. The problem is that their rooms are next to each other. We have amazing white noise machines in their rooms, but for the love of God, GO THE FUCK TO SLEEP. He wakes up and wants to nurse and Daddy is a firefighter so I have to run into his room and quiet him down before Jules wakes up. Side note- I have weaned him from nursing in day time for the most part, but he has tried to go up my shirt or nurse while I am holding him upright haha! Also, he won’t take a bottle if I am around and he hates whole milk.

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Usually blogs are giving advice, but I need advice. How do I sleep train a 15 month old with a 3 year old? She is a creature of habit (aren’t we all), so she doesn’t like our bed. She LOVED her crib, but we transitioned her to a big girl bed cold turkey and she was ready. The crib was on standby, but as far as Hudson goes, it is so hard waking up every 2-3 hours, nursing him, then trying to settle her down because she had a night terror or she heard Hudson crying. IMG_4373

This mom shit is no joke. I am open to any suggestions. I swear by CIO and I know a lot of people doesn’t agree, but my whole motto is do what works for you and your family. We will sleep again…

Recipes and Lists, oh MY!

This is a list that I update DAILY of dinners, apps, snacks, and desserts…Most are healthy and do not pertain to certain diets or lifestyles. However, most are keto approved, beach body approved, and isagenix approved. I have made every single one on here and they are all delicious. Some I made and some are from Pinterest or instagram. Enjoy!

Fave Dinner/Apps Ideas

  • Roasted spaghetti squash with low sugar tomato sauce and ground turkey with basil, Italian seasoning, and any other spice of your choice
  • Edameme Spaghetti (We got it from Costco, or Explore Asia Organic Edamame Spaghetti, 8 Ounce– Add grilled chicken, avocado oil and Pesto Basil Sauce. Voila!
  • 20 minute skillet blackened shrimp fajitas- In a large bowl, add 1 pound of peeled and deveined shrimp, 1 tbsp of McCormick Gourmet Organic Chili Powder, 1.75 oz, 2 tsp of McCormick Paprika, 18.4 oz, 1 tsp of onion powder, and salt and pepper. Set this aside. Then in a medium skillet over medium high heat, add 1 tbsp of olive oil, bell peppers, and onion. You can also use Chosen Foods 100% Pure Avocado Oil 1 L. Saute until 5-7 minutes or until tender. Add 1 tbsp of olive or avocado oil and shrimp and cod for 2-3 minutes until no longer pink. Serve in tortillas with avocado or guacamole!
  • Low Carb Taco Skillet- Brown (organic grass fed) ground beef in skillet. Slowly add 1/2 cup salsa, 2 tsp chili powder, salt and pepper, and 2 cups of shredded cabbage to pan and bring to low boil. Cover and reduce heat to medium for 10-12 minutes or until cabbage soft. Turn off heat and mix in shredded Mexican cheese. Add avocado! Low Carb Taco Skillet on Pinterest
  • Salmon Pasta- Pan fry salmon in avocado pil, salt, pepper, lemon pepper and lemon Juice. Cook and drain red lentil pasta and add 1 tbsp butter and 1/2 cup shredded kale, stir. Add in pesto and top with parmesan!
  • Easy Creamy Three Ingredient Pasta- Cook red lentil pasta and a tub of tomato basil hummus and arugula. Takes 10 minutes!
  • Cauliflower macro lasagna- riced cauliflower drained in a paper towel- take all the excess liquid out. In a large deep skillet, Sauté diced onions and garlic, add in lean ground turkey, sprinkle sage, sea salt, pepper, fennel seeds and add the cauliflower. Mix altogether and add in marinara sauce and top with fresh mozzarella cheese circles and Parmesan cheese. Cover skillet with tin foil and bake for 15 at 400. Remove foil and bake again for 3-5 minutes!
  • Sausage and Apple Stuff Acorn Squash- Cut ends of acorn squash, cut in half and cut out middle, sprinkle with olive oil, salt and pepper and bake for 40 minutes at 400. In another pain add 1 tbsp of olive oil, 1 diced onion, 2 stalks of diced celery, 1 tsp salt and 1 tsp rosemary, 3 cloves of garlic, 1/2 lb of ground sausage, 1 died Macintosh apples, 1 cup Low Carb Seasoned Bread Crumbs – LC Foods – All Natural – Sugar Free – Diabetic Friendly – 5.8 oz, 1/2 cup parmesan and mix altogether in pan. Pour the mixture into the acorn squash boats! Amazing for fall!
  • Tuna cakes with jalapeños and cilantro. These are soooooo good. Hudson LOVED these! We actually used the primal kitchen chipotle lime mayonnaise on them and it added the perfect kick! If you don’t like tuna, you can do chicken burgers instead. Just replace the tuna with chicken. Tuna cakes
  • This might sound weird, but I think I eat this everyday for lunch. Canned chicken salad (I love the Costco ones), with Sir Kensington Avocado Oil Mayo and 1 mini cup of guac all mixed together.
  • Ground turkey with low sodium taco seasoning, shredded lettuce, avocado, organic Kirkland medium salsa, 1 cup black beans, shredded mozzarella cheese (optional)
  • Quinoa taco bake https://pin.it/ny4fwjk2iqeqos
  • Grilled steak and broccoli with garlic
  • This is quick and healthy! Extra lean ground beef with diced onions, shredded lettuce, con queso salsa and fire sauce (keto approved)- This is our go to easy meal. Cook through the ground beef and once browned, add the onions and sauté. I add Terrapin Ridge Farms Spicy Chipotle Garnishing Squeeze 9 OZ (Pack of 1) and then pour over shredded leafy greens or shredded iceberg, then add about 3-4 tbsp of con queso dip. SO DELICIOUS, easy and healthy!
  • Zucchini noodles with shrimp and (Kirkland) pesto sauce. Sauté zucchini noodles, cook the shrimp in a skillet and add pesto and sautéed zucchini. Use ALL the spices. You can get the zucchini pre-cut or use OXO Good Grips Handheld Spiralizer.
  • Grilled chicken thighs with lemon garlic dressing (Chosen Foods Lemon Garlic Dressing and Marinade 12 oz.) and a veggie of your choice
  • Ground turkey with steak seasoning, riced broccoli, and riced cauliflower (can get at Costco or Trader Joe’s). It can get dry so feel free to add more seasoning or a low carb sauce. Howie likes to add steak A1 sauce, but I like it plain.
  • Egg whites with Aidell’s chicken apple sausage, broccoli and tomatoes
  • Brown rice with Aidell’s Habanero apple sausage
  • Mexican cauliflower rice https://pin.it/umdzolbw4jv2pv
  • Lemon garlic shrimp https://pin.it/55txhqhyabf4wb
  • Cauliflower fried rice with tons of veggies and low sodium soy sauce https://therecipecritic.com/cauliflower-fried-rice/
  • Roasted spaghetti squash with Alfredo sauce and broccoli https://pin.it/vgwjb2nwjnpmxo
  • Chicken burgers with sautéed mushrooms and avocado (I love the AMYLU chicken burgers at Costco)- I just grilled them or pan sear them on stove and serve with the mini guacamole cups or avocado!
  • Cheesy Chicken and Broccoli Stuffed Spaghetti Squash- Roast the spaghetti squash- slice down middle, scoop out seeds and roast on foil at 400 for about 40 minutes. I usually place the halves upside down in olive oil. After this is done, make sure all seeds and gunk is out. Preheat oven to broil and spray non-stick skillet with avocado or olive oil over medium high. Add grilled chicken, season with salt and pepper sautéed and cooked through. I use frozen grilled. Put chicken on a plate and add a few tsp oil to same skillet. Add garlic, red pepper flakes and shallot. Sauté for a few minutes and add 2 cups broccoli. Season with salt and pepper and add a few tbsp of water and cover with lid. Let broccoli steam for about 2 minutes and add the chicken. Add 1 oz. cream cheese and 1/4 cup low sodium chicken broth and mix everything until smooth. Then add in 1/4 cup of shredded mozzarella cheese until melted. Pour this into the spaghetti squash boat. Top with 1/4 cup of shredded cheese and broil until cheese is melted.
  • Cauliflower pizza- This might be my fave https://pin.it/fjeqyuqok4k5js-
  • Eggroll in a bowl- In a large, deep skillet, brown 1 lb of ground sausage. In a small bowl, combine 5 gloves of minced garlic, 1/4- 1/2cup of low sodium soy sauce or Liquid Aminos 16 oz. 16 Ounces, and 1/2 tsp of ground ginger (Ocean State sells them for $1); set aside. Once the sausage is cooked, add 1.5 bags of dry coleslaw mix to skillet and stir to combine. Pour the soy sauce mixture into the skillet and stir, continuing to cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until cabbage is wilted, but still a bit crunchy.
  • Parmesan Zucchini- Preheat oven to 425 and line baking sheet with Reynolds Kitchens Parchment Paper (SmartGrid, Non-Stick, 45 Square Foot Roll). Cut 2 zucchini lengthwise into quarters and put in bowl. Pour 1 tbsp olive oil over zucchini and add 2 cloves minced garlic. Rub the garlic and olive oil over zucchini. Put zucchini on baking sheet in single layer, skin side down. Sprinkle with sea salt, pepper, Parmesan cheese, and oregano. Put on top rack and make for 15 minutes then switch to broil and bake for 4 minutes.
  • 3 bean salad for summer
  • Baked Chicken Tacos- Preheat oven to 375 and heat medium sauce pan over medium, add 1 tsp olive oil, 3 chicken breasts diced, and cook for about 10 minutes, 1 jar of any salsa (I love the Kirkland medium or any of the organic medium ones), 1 packet of low sodium taco seasoning; stir and let simmer for about 10 minutes. Spray a Pyrex Easy Grab Glass Bakeware and Food Storage Set (8-PieceBPA-free) with nonstick coconut oil spray and fill taco shells or Keto Cheese Taco Shells – No Carb – High Protein with the chicken salsa mixture. You can top with guacamole or avocado and lettuce.
  • Avocado and White Bean Salad with Vinaigrette
  • BBQ Turkey chili- Cook 1 lb ground turkey, sauté diced onions and all colored peppers in a separate pan. Add the mix to the ground turkey, add 1 can of canned organic turkey chili (Amy’s Organic Chili, Low Fat Medium Black Bean, 14.7 Ounce), 1 can of red kidney beans, 1 can of canellini beans, and Simple Girl Organic Carolina Kick BBQ Sauce – 12oz – Low Calorie – Sugar-Free Diabetic/Vegan Friendly – Gluten/Fat/MSG Free – Vinegar Based – Compatible with Most Diet Plans/True Made Foods Vegetable BBQ Sauce, Paleo Friendly, Non-GMO, 50% Less Sugar, 18 oz Glass Bottle. Mix it altogether and voila! This is another fall friendly meal
  • Crockpot meatballs with Pineapple Habanero Sauce. Get lean meatballs (we like the Kirkland Italian meatballs) and put in crockpot on low, slowly add the sauce and BOOM, done! This is the sauce we love- Robert Rothschild Farm Roasted Pineapple & Habanero Sauce (12.7oz) – Glaze & Finishing Sauce – Sweet & Spicy Sauce for Chicken, Fish, Pork, Shrimp – All Natural, Gluten Free and Certified Kosher.
  • Low Carb Cheeseburger Casserole
  • Healthy Mac and Cheese with Caramelized Onions and Broccoli
  • KID FRIENDLY SNACK- Sweet Potato toast!!!  There are SO many options for this. Slice a sweet potato and toast 1 slice. You can put peanut butter, sliced banana and cinnamon on it. Another option is to add sliced turkey bacon, scrambled eggs or egg whites and top with green onion. A sweeter option that my kids love is add almond butter, blueberries and you can add pomegranate seeds or any other fruit. Add a fried egg, salsa and cilantro. This is far fetched and more adulty, but add brie, walnuts and some raw honey. I love adding chicken salad with celery salt. Or light cream cheese, sliced strawberries and sliced almonds. Add avocado and tuna. Lastly, you can do ricotta cheese, sliced pears and drizzle some raw honey. This are higher carb option snacks.

Dessert Alert

1 (15 oz.) can chickpeas (garbanzo beans), drained, rinsed

3 large eggs…

½ cup pure maple syrup

1/3 cup unsweetened cocoa powder

1 tsp. baking soda

3 Tbsp. coconut oil, melted

1 tsp. pure vanilla extract

1/3 cup dark chocolate chips

Preparation:

1. Preheat oven to 350° F.

2. Prepare 12 muffin cups by lining with muffin papers or coating with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.

3. Place chickpeas, eggs, maple syrup, cocoa powder, baking soda, coconut oil, and extract in blender or food processor; cover. Blend until smooth.

4. Divide batter among 12 prepared muffin cups.

5. Top each muffin with about four chocolate chips; push into batter.

6. Bake for 10 to 12 minutes, or until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.

7. Cool completely and enjoy!

These are just some of my faves, but they are easy for mom’s and so yummy. Keep checking back because I add daily!!!!

I also made a clean eating COSTCO shopping list to help you get started on the path of lifestyle change and happiness- This is just a list of the things I love and need!

  • Granny Smith apples (lowest in sugar for fruits)
  • Kirkland egg whites
  • Eggs (to make boiled eggs)
  • Thermoflask water bottles (so good for keeping track with water consumption)
  • Spring Mix/Romaine lettuce/Spinach (too much spinach personally makes my stomach hurt)
  • Organic ground turkey
  • Himalayan salt (any spices- cinnamon, ground ginger, garlic, pepper, etc.)
  • Steamable bags Brussel sprouts
  • Sweet potatoes
  • Kerry Gold Irish Butter
  • Dave’s Killer Bread (Not keto approved)
  • Avocadoes
  • Kirkland pecans
  • Organic mini guacamole cups
  • The good bean chickpeas for high carb days
  • Kirkland canned chicken salad
  • Sir Kensington’s avocado oil mayonnaise
  • Lemon garlic dressing/greek vinaigrette (primal kitchen or chosen foods)
  • Avocado cooking oil
  • Organic Chicken breast or thighs (awesome for grilling)
  • Amylu Chicken burgers
  • Aidell’s chicken sausage (any flavor)
  • Kirkland protein bars
  • Kirkland cashew clusters or coconut clusters
  • Raw almonds
  • Black beans
  • English cucumbers
  • Brita water and filters
  • Broccoli (frozen or refrigerated)
  • Riced cauliflower
  • Kirkland pesto sauce
  • Edamame spaghetti
  • Strawberries, blueberries, Cotton Candy grapes (HAVE YOU TRIED?!)
  • Mary’s Gone Crackers/simple mills almond flour sea salt crackers
  • Kirkland almond butter
  • Canned chicken salad
  • Tuna
  • Shrimp
  • Coconut oil
  • Kirkland olive oil
  • Heavy whipping cream
  • Perfect bars!!!! Amazing deal because you can get 12 for 20!
  • Almond flour
  • Cacoa powder
  • Peanut Butter
  • Bananas for shakes
  • Edamame spaghetti
  • Frozen grilled chicken (farm raised or organic)
  • Grass fed beef
  • Rolled oats

Dear Trader Joe’s, can you please come closer to Somers, CT? I heard there might be one coming to Manchester, CT, but hurry up! I love Trader Joe’s, but I can hardly get there because the closest one is about 40-45 minutes away. I follow a lot of Trader Joe fanatics on Instagram and found some awesome products. Follow @traderjoeslists for more ideas! Note: I haven’t tried all of these items, but I want to. Maybe there shouldn’t be one close to my house…#theregoesallmymoney

  • Unsweetened green tea in glass bottle
  • blue cheese stuffed olives
  • watermelon kombucha
  • ONE bars (I am obsessed with the maple glazed donut)
  • cauliflower gnocchi
  • matcha green tea cans (never tried matcha, but @kristafitstagram loves it
  • chili lime seasoning
  • everything but bagel seasoning (put on hard boiled eggs yum)
  • almond cashew macadamia nut beverage
  • creamy almond butter
  • mixed nut butter (my kids eat it from the jar)
  • green goddess salad dressing
  • cotton candy grapes
  • sweet potatoes
  • unsweetened vanilla almond milk
  • rainbow wraps
  • raw cashews
  • 86% dark chocolate
  • lemon elderflower soda (with vodka?!)
  • blueberry lavender almond beverage (you can mix it with rolled oats and OMG)
  • veggie protein burgers
  • maple ladder cereal
  • sriracha and garlic BBQ sauce
  • cinnamon apple snack sticks (a must for kids)
  • red lentil pasta
  • hemp seed bars
  • raises the bar BARS
  • sweet potato ribbons
  • ginger mints
  • boxed wine