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Finding Your Voice #TWSS #linkup

Posted by & filed under Link Ups.

That's What She Said A weekly linkup, we share a quote and you share a post! Writers Bloggers Word Lovers Women's Words Quotes

Please only linkup posts inspired by this week’s quote.
We want to see how this quote will get your creative juices flowing. 

This is a party connect with others, let’s get mingling!
It would be SUPER AWESOME if you would share the link up via your social media. #TWSS
Number one rule: Have fun and be creative.

Your Hosts

 

 

Hosts TWSS Thank You Heart

Thanks for sharing your posts with us last week
That's What She Said J.K Rowling

It is no secret that I am a fan of J.K Rowling, not too long ago I wrote this post all about my love for a very famous wizard.  She is a talented writer, an inspiration to the world, and wiser than most people.  

To me, J.K Rowling’s words are about finding your voice.

When Dean and I started this link up we wanted to provide women an opportunity to find their voice.  An opportunity to write and explore what words mean to them.  An opportunity to step out of their comfort zone and share something meaningful.  An opportunity to not worry about SEO, blog traffic, or Pinterest worthy content. An opportunity get back to “old school blogging”. An opportunity to support other woman, other bloggers, and share in the love of the written word. 

What is truly amazing to me about this link up, and what I am seriously so proud of about this link up, is just how open-ended it is.  We aren’t asking you to share a DIY, or a recipe, you don’t have to be a mom to join the fun. It is simply about your voice.  About inspiration.  

While we provide some wisdom in the form of a quote; where that leads you is up to you! And I mean that! Literally, wherever it leads you to write is wonderful, and perfect, and worthy of sharing.  You can share tips and tricks, give a top 10 list, share a piece of fiction, or maybe even some non-fiction. Share a unique point of view or some exciting news, maybe even a confession. Share something raw, and emotional.  Honor someone you love. Share a piece of your soul.  Share your voice.

This link up can be anything YOU want it to be.  

So now I challenge you, find your voice and share it with us! Each Thursday morning we go live with a quote that we have shared the week before.  Show the world just how talented and amazing you are with your words.  With your voice.  Inspire others and join the fun each Thursday with Dean and I.

Show us yours


TWSS: The future belongs to those who believe in the beauty of their dreams. Eleanor Roosevelt |Quote| Women's Words| Linkup| Blog Prompt| Writers wanted

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Things I’ve Googled as a New Mom

Posted by & filed under Babies, Daily Life, Motherhood.

Motherhood is hard; it is often uncharted territory.  You are sent into this new land with an unmarked map and minimal food and water and expected to not only survive; but kick some booty while you’re at it!!  Thankfully along the way we find some resources… your mother, your sister, your best friend, a slew of parenting books.  But when you are in a bind, and it is 2 A.M. and your go-to people are sleeping, and you don’t have the energy to search for said parenting books, well then there is Google.  

How did we every survive without Google?

Google has been my friend for a long time, but I feel like we became besties after the boys were born.  Google was always just an arms reach away and would happily answer any of my inquires.  Even in the wee hours of the morning! I swear I have Googled everything under the sun; Matt and I have often joked about what someone would say if they saw my search history. Well today I thought I would share with you just a few of the things I’ve Googled as a new mom!

Things I have Googled as a new mom

 

1. Top news for today
If the boys are awake, the TV is not on.  If the boys are asleep, while the TV may be on, I am far too busy folding laundry, making dinner, attempting to shower, etc., that I pay it little to no attention.  I cannot tell you how many times someone has asked me, “Did you hear about ____?” And I sheepishly searched Google for the latest news for the day.  Sorry, current events, you are just not a priority. 

2. How can I stop my baby from peeing when I change his diaper?
Seriously, was I going to have to use a pee pee teepee forever? Well the answer is yes.  Or just get peed on.Eventually they will stop everyone reported.  And now I too can report that we have retired our pee pee teepees and yet I do not get peed on!

3. What does normal baby poop look like?
I am slightly ashamed to even admit this but when we started introducing solids to the boys, I was terrified at what I would find in their diaper.  It was SO drastically different from before, I couldn’t help but worry if perhaps something was wrong.  But don’t you worry, Google will happily show you a slideshow of what your little ones dirty diaper should look like at different stages.  

4. Acetaminophen dosing chart
I seriously printed this out and it is hanging on my fridge.  But you know what I still Google every time one of the boys needs some acetaminophen? Yep, you guessed it, to find this chart!  Thanks Google for not judging my laziness for walking from one room of the house to the kitchen.  

5. What is the difference between spit up and throw up?
I mean really?? This was confusing to me.  The best way it was explained to me, thanks to Google, was when a baby spit up they were still happy and content, they would spit up and happily go on their way.  This is called being a happy-spitter. Who knew!? Not me! But now I do! Thanks Google!

6. How many poopy diapers should I expect each day? Can my baby be pooping too much?
The answers to those questions are as follows; a crap ton, and no! Also is it normal that so many of my questions revolved around diapers and bodily functions? Maybe I should Google that!

7. Will my baby ever stop being such a messy eater?
I swear the boys have gotten messier the longer they have eaten solids. I feel like it is a constant battle of keeping not just the babies clean; but the walls, the floor, and even the ceiling surrounding their highchairs.  Also the verdict is out, Google gave me tips for handling their messiness but potentially they will be going to college and still throwing food on the floor. 

8. When should my baby _____?
Fill in the blank with any slew of milestones; support his own head, sit unsupported, crawl, say his first word.  As a mom of premature babies, we are fortunate to have a team of specialist who track the boys development.  The downside of this? It can make you a little milestone obsessed.

9. Is my baby sleeping too much?
Go ahead, roll your eyes at me.  But I was honestly concerned my babies were sleeping too much.  For a long time their schedule was a constant cycle of awake for 45 minutes, asleep for 45 minutes, awake for 45 minutes, asleep for 45 minutes.  This just did not seem normal.  Plus I was going batty with the constant awake/asleep/awake business.  Well guess what I forgot… there is no normal when it comes to babies and children. Thanks Google for reminding me of that!

10. Does my baby really need a bath every day… or even every OTHER day?
So here is a major mom confession, you can roll your eyes at me again, I do not give the boys a bath every day.  And thanks to Google, I feel AOK with that decision. 

 

Do you Google everything under the sun too? 

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How We Can Stop Judging Others #TWSS #linkup

Posted by & filed under Link Ups.

That's What She Said A weekly linkup, we share a quote and you share a post! Writers Bloggers Word Lovers Women's Words Quotes

Please only linkup posts inspired by this week’s quote.

We want to see how this quote will get your creative juices flowing.

This is a party connect with others, let’s get mingling!

It would be SUPER AWESOME if you would share the link up via your social media. #TWSS

Number one rule: Have fun and be creative 

Your Hosts

 

 

 

Hosts TWSS Thank You Heart

Thanks for getting “silly” with us last week, ladies! We loved reading your posts. :)

#TWSS Mother Teresa: If you judge people you have not time to love them.

This quote was a little bit of a dagger in the heart for several reasons.  First it is seriously truthful! If you are spending your time tearing someone apart, criticizing their every action, how can you possible find time to life them up, to look for the good, to love them.  Secondly, it was a reminder, that I am not perfect.  I can guarantee I make choices in my life that perhaps others do not understand, or that they would not make themselves if they were in my shoes.  But that’s the things, they are not in my shoes.  So they cannot, or rather should not judge my choices.  And if I am saying that about others, then I should also be saying that to myself.  I am not in anyones shoes but my own!

But judging is easy, and quick, and seems painless.  A quick text here, an eye roll there, a snarky comment on Facebook. Easy, quick, but so not painless.  With each judgement I make, I am not allowing myself to be the best I can be.  I am short changing myself, as well as the person I am judging.   

Since I knew this post was coming up, I have been making a conscious effort to not judge others.  To take a minute to pause, show empathy, and move on.  It isn’t as easy as it sounds; as sometimes we are so quick to make snap judgements; but I have a few tips for you today for how we can stop judging others, that I think will make a difference.  

How We Can Stop Judging Others

1. Look for the Good
This may take some practice, and some intentionality, but I assure you it is possible. I also assure you you can and will find some good in every person you meet.  It might just be that they have good taste in shoes, but hey, the good is there! Just take the time to focus on the positive in others, and in situations too.

2. Watch Your Own Behavior
Sometimes we are too hard on others, and perhaps judge them for something we ourselves have done in the past. Before sending that snarky text, or calling up a friend, think to yourself, “have I ever done that…?”   Most likely you have done something similar in the past, and this will help you offer some empathy towards the person. 

3. Give Them the Benefit of the Doubt
Matt likes to remind me of this; particularly when I am ranting about someone or something.  He will say, “Courtney do you think they woke up this morning and thought, ‘I am going to tick Courtney off today by doing X, Y, orZ?'” and while I hate to admit it in the heat of the moment, the answer is no. Always no.  I would like to think, that most people are inherently good, and therefore do not wake up with the intent to tick you off.  

4. Fell Good About YOU
And stop judging yourself!! If you love you, if you are secure with you, if you are ok with you, than that is enough! If you recognize that you are a great mom, a great friend, a great wife, etc. than what else matters? The answers is nothing! 

What do you think? How we can stop judging people, and start loving them instead?

 

Show us yours

Next Week's Quote That's What She Said J.K Rowling
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Tips for Feeding Your Baby On The Go {and a #Giveaway #ad}

Posted by & filed under Babies, Family, Giveaway.

As a new mom, I very quickly learned a thing or two that made this stay at home mom to twin boys more manageable.  One of those things is getting out of the house is key your sanity and happiness; it also helps you little ones happiness!  I am a firm believer in the fact that everyone is happy with some fresh air and a change of scenery! 

As the boys got a couple of months older, and started eating solid foods, getting out of the house got trickier.  No longer was it as easy as walking out the door; now there were meals to think about and plan prior to our departure.  There was more to plan and organize, but I still stood by my belief in getting out of the house.  I just needed to learn another thing or two (there is a constant learning curve in motherhood, I tell ya!)  I thought I would share a few tips for feeding your baby on the go.  And if you stick around until the end, I have a FABULOUS giveaway for you to enter!Tips for Feeding Your Baby On The Go

1. The right bib
Mom truth right here, not all bibs are created equal!! I would recommend getting a plastic coated bib that can be easily wiped clean after eating on the go. You can worry about washing it once you get home, but at least it won’t leave baby food debris in your diaper bag!

2. Placemats
The first time we took the boys to a restaurant that they were old enough to sit in high chairs, the very first thing they each did was put their mouth on the edge of the table.  Mmmm, yum!  To avoid not only this, but also allow your baby to eat some tasty finger food, I recommend a portable placemat.  There are a couple of options here; you could get a package of one-use, toss away placemats that stick to the table and then you throw it away after that meal.  Or you could get one that you would take home, wash, and reuse it next time.  Both have their perks and their flaws.  Whatever works best for you!

3. Snack cups
Snack cups are a great way to travel with your babies favorite finger foods without fear of them falling all over your car or ground! There are tons of brands but find one that works best for you.

4. High Chair Cover
These covers can typically also work as a grocery cart cover as well! Which is great!! I love when a product for baby can serve multiple purposes.  A high chair cover keeps your baby protected from any germs on the high chair but can also catch any stray food!

5. High Quality Organic Portable Baby Food
Does that sound like it is too good to be true? Because I thought so too! But I assure you, it is not!! Thanks to the company Happy Family; you can provide your baby with the very best organic fruits, vegetables, dairy, meats and grains even when you are a busy family on the go!  Their Happy Baby pouches are ideal for feeding your baby age-appropriate nutrition without the hassle of needing a spoon or bowl to do so!  Many of their products have superfoods like whole grain amaranth and quinoa, and fruits and veggies like kale, mango and coconut. What more could you ask for?? Maybe some finger foods?  Happy Family has you covered there too! Thanks to their Puffs, Munchies, and Yogis you can fill those ever important snack cups with melt-in-your mouth finger food for babies and toddlers. Happy Puffs teach baby tactility and self-feeding. This company really has thought of everything!  HappyBaby

Now that I have shared my tips for feeding your baby on the go, want to learn more about that giveaway?  I am so excited to share that today you can enter to win a Happiest Baby Package (6-18 months)!! Happy Family will ship a selection of their most popular products for ages 6 months to 18 months, as well as additional coupons for your whole family, right to your front door.  A $25 value!! As an added bonus you will receive some great educational resource cards and a reusable Happy Family tote bag! Enter below for your chance to win! 

a Rafflecopter giveaway

 

Stay up to date with all things Happy Family!
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**Happy Family provided me with a Happy Baby Package to review. All thoughts and ideas are my own. I would never share a product with you that I did not enjoy myself.**

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Pink Sponge Curlers Give You Confidence

Posted by & filed under Daily Life, Link Ups.

That's What She Said A weekly linkup, we share a quote and you share a post! Writers Bloggers Word Lovers Women's Words Quotes

Please only linkup posts inspired by this week’s quote.
We want to see how this quote will get your creative juices flowing. 

This is a party connect with others, let’s get mingling!
It would be SUPER AWESOME if you would share the link up via your social media. #TWSS
Number one rule: Have fun and be creative 

Your Hosts

 

 

 

Hosts TWSS Thank You Heart

We loved reading about how you were daring yourselves last week, thanks for sharing!

That's What She Said Amy PoehlerDo you follow me on Instagram?? If you do, you may have recently seen a picture of me COVERED in colored corn starch! The back story to the photo…?

A photo posted by Courtney (@courtneynoel12) on

 I am a running coach for a group of elementary school girls.  We have been working since January to slowly build up their ability and endurance to run a 5K.  We had our practice 5K last week, and the other coaches and I went all out.  We prepared for weeks to make this an exciting and fun-filled event.  This involved making more than a dozen batches of colored corn starch to throw at the girls (and coaches) as they ran past.   It was a blast!! I was completely covered from head to toe but I could not have cared less.  I was proud of my girls, my co-coaches, and the parents who volunteered at stations and cheered their daughters on.  

After our 5K I stopped to pick up take-out for dinner. I was tired, and there was NO WAY I was about to cook.  And Matt had been traveling all week, and I knew there was NO WAY he was about to cook. So take out it was.

I literally did not think twice about my appearance as I strolled in to pick up our food.  It wasn’t until the woman who was helping me with our order couldn’t take her eyes off me. She noticed that I noticed.

She said, “So, what’s with the… uhhh… that…?”

It took me a second and then I thought… oh, the powder, the color, the way I look, that must be what she is referring too.  I quickly explained my appearance, feeling proud of looking so silly.  Proud of the outline of my sunglasses on my face. Proud of the orange, pink, and blue that was streaked across my shirt. Proud of my wild looking hair.  Proud!  Why wouldn’t I be proud to look so silly!? My girls and I had worked HARD to look that silly. The woman listed to my story.

She smiled and said, “Oh. Well it takes a very…..” She trailed off, not finishing her thought.

I filled in her blank for her, “Confident?” I asked.

Yes” she said, “It takes a very confident person to go out in public like that. I would never.   I mean I could never go out looking like that.”

I paid for dinner and walked back to the car, feeling proud, confident, satisfied, maybe even powerful with my silly appearance. 

As I drove home, I kept going back to my conversation with the woman.  “I could never. I would never.” She had said those words to me. But why? What makes one person ok with looking silly? What makes one person embrace who they are?

While I was thinking about all of this, I was suddenly flooded with one particular memory.

I was probably 5 years old.  My dad yelled upstairs, “Courtney, want to go get ice cream?” 5 year old Courtney, was not too different from 20 something Courtney, I would NEVER turn down ice cream.  “Sure!” I shouted back and made my way downstairs.  But then I hesitated. “Dad?  Is it ok that I have curlers in my hair?” Without missing a beat, he responded, “It doesn’t bother me. Does it bother you?” I shook my head no.  “Then that is all that matters. It’s good for you to go out in curlers.  Now go get your shoes.” Pink Sponge Curlers Give You Confidence I think in that moment; that pink sponge curler moment; my confidence was built.  In that moment of going out in public knowing that perhaps I looked silly, perhaps I didn’t look “normal” or “typical”.  But that was ok.   It didn’t bother me, and it didn’t bother my dad. So what did it matter? I had pink sponge curlers in my hair and I was eating ice cream.  And I was happy.  It is a memory that I will have forever.  It is a memory that makes me smile, and laugh, and makes me feel silly and confident and proud.  All rolled into one.  I am now a firm believer that pink sponge curlers give you confidence. 

Do you have a time in your life that you remember choosing to be ok with who you were? I’d love to hear!

Show us yours

 

 

 

Next Week's Quote
#TWSS Mother Teresa: If you judge people you have not time to love them.

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Best Apps for New Moms

Posted by & filed under Babies, Family, Motherhood.

Being a new mom can be overwhelming; you might have so many questions and so many things on your plate you are not even sure where to start. Thanks to living in the age of technology, we have lots of great resources at the tips of our fingers.  Today I wanted to share some of the best apps for new moms.  All of the apps below were truly amazing when the boys were first born.  And 10 months later, I still use many of them on a daily basis!

Best Apps for New Moms

WebMD Baby
This app does so much more than I first expected.  Not only do you have access to hundreds are medical articles that are specific to babies; but you can also track your babies growth, soiled diapers, sleep, and feeding schedules.  As an added bonus this app is FREE. 

White Noise Lite (ios)(android)
Are YOU having trouble sleeping? Or what about your little one? When my boys were eating every couple of hours throughout the night, I often struggled to fall back to sleep. White Noise Lite was the perfect fix; providing ambient sounds to help me sleep. There are tons of different sounds to choose from; crashing waves, rain fall, even crickets chirping.  You are able to import new sounds that you can purchase.  As well as mix sounds together! This app is also FREE. 

iBreastfeed
This app is by Medela and gives new mothers the breastfeeding support and helpful information they’ll need when first getting started. It also allows you to track your feeding and pumping schedule. This app is FREE.

Growth App (ios)
I love this app.  It might seem silly; but I have loved watching my boys grow into the big babies they are today.  Born prematurely at 4 pounds, I am amazed at their current location on the growth charts.  This app lets you choose the official WHO or CDC templates from birth to 20 years old.  They even have a chart for preemies!  This app is FREE

The Wonder Weeks
This app accompanies a book with the same name.  This is my go to app when I cannot figure out just what is going on with my babies.  It is a calendar that explains the development of your baby.  It explains why your baby might be fussy, sleeping or eating poorly, and gives you manageable suggestions for how you can help your baby through these rough patches.  This app is $1.99 but I promise it is worth it!

AnyList
This app is not necessarily for parents; in fact I had it on my phone long before I became a mom.  However, this app became my best friend after the babies were born.  My cloudy pregnancy brain did not fade away after the babies were born. Instead, pregnancy brain just became mommy brain.  I literally have about 45 seconds from the time something pops into my head and when it disappears from my brain. AnyList is the best way to create and share grocery shopping lists. I can share lists with my husband, my mom, even a friend who has offered to do shopping for me.  AnyList lets you create any kind of list you’d want; from the grocery store, to Target, to Costco.  We have running lists for all of these! This app is FREE and a serious life saver. 

 

Parents, what are your go-to apps? Did I miss any of the best apps for new moms?

 

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