Work-Life Balance

Baby Baby and Mommy =)

Baby Baby and Mommy =)

I’ve been wanting to write on this topic for awhile. From the difference between the pre-baby life to the mom life. The many factors that contribute to my work-life balance and how it’s changed over the years but, has it really? Do I appreciate life more or do I have a better flow of balance between what keeps me busy and what I consider work? Let’s begin:

Pre Baby:

The perfect balance for me was work hard, play hard. If I didn’t work enough I had a poor life balance and I found myself where I needed a lot of ongoing projects in order to keep my life in order. To say a 80+ work week was the perfect combo to my work-life balance would be true. Although, I may not have worked 80 hours, I kept myself busy at one time or another. I finished my bachelors, I put more into my job, or I took on an extra job. When it came time to vacation, I could balance it out…a week at the longest. Then, came my overwhelming need to stay busy. My life made sense.

After Baby:

This is quite tricky but, follow me for a few sentences. The first year: I created this blog. If that gives you any insight to how my mind works. I also, choose to stay at home with my son. Did I work? Yes, but in a different sense. I had many tasks that kept me busy. I knew my balance had to change when Baby Baby turned one and shortly after we made the move. I knew to maintain a healthy lifestyle and to give my son the life he deserves, I would have to allow more time for work. It was a crazy transition at first but, by nature one I was able to adjust to. My work-life balance turned into one that involves 40 hours a week max and the rest of my time with rest and adventures. While I still stay busy, I find that perfect balance between work and life is a majority of projects and time with my family. My life makes sense.

What is a healthy work-life balance versus and unhealthy one? It’s hard when you want to give 100% to everything you do. When you become a Mom, that turns into a challenge (literally, I still want to put 100% into everything I do, if not more.) In order to avoid an unhealthy life-work balance, I keep a max on my work hours or at least I try too. It’s tough, that’s why I enjoy sharing my adventures, reviews, and what makes me love being a Mommy! I find myself sneaking in what one may see as work as apart of my life…because I’m just that type of person ;p I plan out every other weekend and I make every other “relax” ones…or what’s that term I use to use… “Let’s play it by ear.” Lol. It’s always an ongoing process. Life is precious and should never be left out of the balance. I think by creating projects, having great friends, good times with family, and blogging/vlogging, I’ve found what makes me happy, that perfect work-life balance =)

Car Shopping

The time has come to start shopping to replace “single” car car. I’ve waited awhile but I feel we’re at a point where Mav and I each need our own family vehicle. I have a few different vehicles I’ve been looking at. My first priority is safety, and then comes what is comfortable. SUVs have been my go-to. However, some vehicles don’t even categorize themselves as SUVs but still give the same options. My current vehicle selection has many key points I enjoy and I think we may just go with another Subaru…. I love our current model and it has everything we need. Adding another to our family would be great and I could really see us having it until Baby Baby gets his license. Some other Makes on my list are Volvo and Jeep. All are within the same price point for the options I want; the XC60 is one of my favorite SUVs right now. I love the features, the way it drives, and it did make KBB’s top 25-safety list. It wasn’t until I got behind of the wheel of the 60 that I appreciated its value. As a previous Jeep owner, I’m always curious to see what features and changes as well as different models Jeep transitions into. The last few years they’ve had some trial and errors that drive me crazy. A go-to is a wrangler; I’m a huge fan of the Sahara. I know what most of you are thinking…. didn’t she say, “Safety is the top priority??!!!” I did, I don’t plan on going to far off the map of a stock Sahara, and the options available are enough to make a family vehicle.

With my three choices, Mav had to introduce another idea today and that is the Q5. I’m not a huge Audi fan but I do like it’s ratings and would have to go test-drive it to see if it’s something I’d enjoy. It’s in the ballpark range so, there’s a forth option. One of the biggest things I love about my SUV choices is I want one that a mark can tell a story and not something to freak out over. I loved when I had a Jeep because a scratch here and there wasn’t the end of the world. There are some cars that are flawless and they’re meant to stay that way. Being realistic, I have a soon to be 19 month old and I need something that can handle our silly adventures ;p

All and all, car shopping is fun yet it becomes annoying quickly. So, I’m starting my research early and hopefully within the next few months I can decide on what would be the best option for our family. I love the emails and support, if anyone has any suggestions. Please email me via my contact page. Also, I do review comments as well. I’ll approve if relevant and appropriate.

I started filming my Father’s Day gift review and I’m really excited on how it’s turning out. Of course, I have to wait until Father’s Day to get the reaction and review of how the child seat, helmet, and bike works. I think vlogs will be a fun way to share more of our adventures and introduce new products to my readers =)

Disneyland Diamond Celebration

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we made it!!!

A little late but, better then never. With the MIL in town, Mav and I were able to make plans Friday night. Wooo, date night =) We decided to do a late night trip to the Parks for the 24 hour Diamond Celebration. A little adventurous but, we were up for the challenge. We both took naps Friday evening and left for the Parks around midnight. Baby Baby stayed with Grandma, we didn’t want to brave the crowds during the day and didn’t feel like it was appropriate to take him late at night. The 24 hour event kicked off Disneyland’s 60th Year Anniversary, which also included new shows and a parade. We got into the Parks around 1 AM and only DCA was open. Disneyland hit capacity earlier the previous day and had to stop letting people in. I really couldn’t believe I was up so late, It’s been awhile since I willingly was up during the wee hours of the night.

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5 min wait for Dumbo….what??!!

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The castle glowing bright in late night hours =)

At 3 AM they reopened Disneyland, which strangely enough didn’t have a whole lot of people in it. After a few rides, a little pin trading, and of course, dancing…. we ended our night watching the sun come up over sleeping beauty’s castle and waved goodnight/good morning to all the characters on our way out.

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6 AM at the Parks!

Overall, It was a fun experience. Would I do it again? Most likely not. Even with Grandma to watch Baby Baby and the morning sleep in, I don’t advise any parent to willingly stay up until the sun rises. Hahaha. Unless, you’re being swept of your feet or feeding a newborn…watching the sun come up as a full grown adult is strange. It gave me more of a appreciation for the mom life I live and realizing how precious sleep is ;p All and all, it was a perfect date night. Of course, you can never go wrong with Disney, your love, and awesome friends =)

You Don’t Look like a “Real” Mom….

Ugh, the ongoing debate over what a “real” mom looks likes. Weekly, a new story goes viral. The disapproval or applaud of a “real” Mom frustrates me. Recent media topics that involve Hilary Duff and Rachel Hollis have created a controversial stir amongst Mommies. I applaud any Mom that feels empowered in their own skin. The reason I felt compelled to write about this topic is because I find myself in this gray area that involves the comment, “You don’t look like a real mom” quite often. I’m not exactly sure what allows someone to define that or why the thought would come to mind. Whether, it’s meant to be a compliment or insult. I’ll never understand the reasoning behind telling someone they don’t look like a “real” mom. I’ve wrote blogs about how I find my sense in fashion and what I believe fits my role as a Mother but, when it comes down to two pieces of cloth covering private parts … I’m all Mom whether I have battle scars or not.

This gray area I find is between the pictures of Hilary Duff and Rachel Hollis in their bikinis. Their main goal was to state: own your body. Which, I get. I’m not against a Mommy showing off a tummy lined with “battle scars.” I sympathize with Hilary Duff versus Rachel Hollis. However, a picture is a picture. You know little about feelings and in social media, it’s easy to display a world of happiness with a few quick posts.

3Months

First bikini pic with Baby Baby at 3 Months. After a brutal winter spending time in CA for a month was the best!

Some may say I got lucky. When questioned on my quick return to my shape, I always found a defense. A lot of times I blamed my weight loss on breastfeeding. When people spoke under their breath they breastfeed too…I went to “it must be good genes.” In reality, I should never be questioned on how I look after I became a Mother. The day my son was born, I was a “real” Mom.

However, after my son was born. I know for me what people didn’t see were the internal scars. I went from carrying my child for nine months to holding him in my arms in a matter of hours. As a petite woman, being pregnant was one of the first times in my life I felt whole. When you go from being whole to back to that small petite women in a matter of weeks, it takes a toll on you. I know it did on me. I felt empty and spent many showers crying. I thought a few times, “I’m crazy, right? I’m crying over the fact I got my body back!” This way of thinking was silly and I knew I had to own my Mommyhood. Lucky for me, my son was born in November and a pool wasn’t in sight for a few more months. I didn’t get stretch marks and my linea nigra still took about a year to fade. When it came time to put a swimsuit on, a bikini seemed natural because it fit. Milk-filled breasts was just another reason for those to commit throughout the summer… If they only knew a size 0 waist and  leaky 34 DDD isn’t all that it’s cracked up to be ;p It took time to get use to being back in the same body I use to love, then I grew to love again…because it carried and birthed my son =)

July 2014, Baby Baby & Mommy-Rehoboth Beach, DE

July 2014, Baby Baby & Mommy-Rehoboth Beach, DE

I  hope sharing my story on the “real” Mom helps petite women who go through pregnancy and return to their bodies as if nothing ever happened know we are “Real” moms too… Maybe we got lucky, maybe we run our asses off, maybe it’s good genes…. we all know it’s from breastfeeding, right? Lol At the end of the day, I might not look like most typical Mom (whatever that is.) But, it’s not so bad now.

Ode to my "mom body"

March 2015 – Ode to my “mom body”

 

Sunday Funday…Nope!

Today was the first time I woke up to an empty house. Mav got up early with Baby Baby and went to his relatives for Sunday festivities and dinner. Of course, only I would commit to a seasonal position. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoy being able to get out and do “non-mom” activities but, it’s not easy. I’ve been so spoiled this past year with the luxury of working from home and my son always being by my side. You would think by now I would be use to the short time of distance between loved ones. From moving cross country to a prior arrangement Mav and I had. Over the Summer, I stayed at the beach while Mav would drive up on weekends. That was tough but Baby Baby and I stayed busy. It was definitely worth the short distance and I still had someone by my side for each adventure. I don’t know, today is tough and I can live without a day of Sunday Family Fun. However, there’s just a natural instinct when you’re a Mommy of always wanted your children close by.

I took a break since I wrote the first half of this post. I realized how much went into today’s separation. I had to drive the “single” car car…I’m so use to my mom mobile and while Mav driving the “single” car car totally works, it so didn’t for me! Haha. I missed the mom mobile aka “baru baru” and my babbling baby. The two of us listening to Slapstick Radio and baby waving his hands dancing. Talk about being an emotional mess! This day is getting longer by the minute! I can’t see this separation being a full time gig, lol

*my first hosted giveaway has ended!!! Thank you for participating and a winner will be announced through the sponsored organization’s site. I will host another giveaway soon, please check back!

Story of my Life

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Being a Mommy is a busy job. I usually blog when Baby Baby is sleeping and lately I’m sleeping along with him, LOL. This past week he fought his first cold, while I just caught his cold! hahaha. It was a little bit stressful but, we’re doing a lot better now. We’re looking forward to finishing up Halloween festivities this week and celebrating his First Halloween (my favorite holiday ;p)!! He’s going to dress up as a baby bat =)

I also added a new widget to the site, check out the sidebar for “Current Giveaways.” I’ll be hosting new giveaways a few times a month, so stay tuned!!

FASHION 101 for a Mommy

Let me just begin by writing, “simple and basic.” Two concepts I’ve learned to remind myself while shopping for clothes. There’s something to be said about being a women of simplicity. Basics have kept me sane since the arrival of my son. The last 8 months I have gone through four seasons and still managed to sport a decent wardrobe. I owe this to having a basic color collection of sports bras, tank tops, hoodies, leggings, skinny jeans, and shorts. I knew I would be breastfeeding for at least a year and didn’t want to have to shop special for it (built in nursing bras tanks tops). My easiest option was sports bras and tank tops. Enough support and easy access…lol. Fortunately this collection already made up most of my wardrobe.

What about those other pieces? The pre baby pieces that just barely make the mom life cut. Like crop tops, a summer staple that just needs to be altered a little bit. It’s simple; I just layer them over a tank top now. So let’s say, Baby Baby gets hungry in public. I won’t have Mr. Creeper staring at my bare boob while my son eats. In these hot summer months I’ve tried to ditch the tank top in the crop top but can’t help but feel the guilt of “this is not what mom’s wear.” These pieces are awesome because I can keep them around but wore the wrong way and they just become a mommy fashion disaster!! With so much focus on being a new mom and raising a healthy baby, the last thing I need is to feel guilty about what I’m wearing.

These types of situations remind me of an outing I had with Mav pre baby…. When I attempted to wear out a pair of flare low waist Frankie b. jeans that were my favorite in high school. He stopped me before walking out the door and asked if I was really going to wear “flare” jeans to lunch. My only reaction was, “I had these since high school and they still fit, why not?” He replied, “my sweat pants from high school still fit, do you see me wearing them out?” Needless to say I changed into a pair of skinny jeans and realized I just experienced my first “old” moment. Just because it still fits doesn’t make it okay…and it’s what I go by to dress my days. While those cute cut off daisy duke shorts are perfect for this hot sunny day… the moon doesn’t need to come out while bending over to pick up Baby. They fit but that doesn’t mean it makes them okay. =/

All and all, I’m not saying a mommy can’t wear the occasion cocktail dress for dinner and movie. Just wear a solid color and make sure your butt isn’t hanging out. It’s really not that hard to still look good while being basic. Accessories have always been a woman’s best friends and there’s nothing a cute pair of shoes and handbag…oops sorry, I mean, “diaper bag” can’t dapper up. At the end of the day the sexiest thing a women can wear is confidence while owning the role of being a caregiver =) Just remember…just not in flare jeans or a sweat suit ;p