Review & Giveaway: Illumibowl

A few weeks ago I was given an opportunity to test out this fun new product. Since I am a mom to three boys, I jumped on this one very quickly when I was approached.

One of my kids, who will remain nameless, still cannot figure out how to lift a toilet seat, aim or flush (which seems to be a common trait among boys/men). This child is finally getting up at night and using the bathroom. He never turns on the light and the night light isn’t close to the potty. So you can imagine what I walk into every morning. I am always Clorox wiping that bathroom! Well what if there was a cool product that would illuminate the toilet the moment that there’s any motion or movement nearby.

Well you are in luck. There is. It’s called the IlluiBowl  and it’s awesome. The color that I have it set to is red but you can change it. The boys love the red … It reminds them of the Star Wars Dark Side! Like I said I live with all boys. Everything is Star Wars!

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This gadget is awesome. You attach it over the side of the toilet and the moment that someone walks in the bathroom it illuminates. It’s even scared me a few times. I forgot that it was on there one night when I ran it to put towels away. But it works and even though I still have to clean the bathroom quite often, it definitely  hasn’t been as horrific.  Overall this is a pretty awesome product that I would recommend.  The only issue that I have had is the inside suction cup doesn’t always attach but it has had no effect on the use of the product.

IllumiBowl is:

  • Motion Activated
  • Easy to Clean
  • Splashproof

You can set your IllumiBowl to any single color or color-rotate (Red, Orange, Green, Teal, Blue, Purple, Pink, White). Your IllumiBowl color changing night light will make your toilet bowl glow every time you walk into your bathroom at night.

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Head on over here to order your very own IllumiBowl for just $19.99 or you can enter the contest below to win your very own IllumiBowl

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I did not receive any compensation for my review. Everything in my review above is based on my own opinions. I was given a free product to test but zero compensation.

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Moms Don’t Have Time For Stitches

You know that you are a mom when you know that you need stitches but shrug it off because it’s too much of a hassle. Ain’t nobody got time got that.

Yeah my can opener is on its last leg and sometimes leaves jagged edges. Of course tonight I cut myself on one of those edges. Blood everywhere. I usually pass out or get very nauseous but tonight I did ok. I tried everything but it wouldn’t stop. I know that I probably needed a stitch or two but why on earth would I drag three boys out at dinner/homework/bedtime to an urgent care center for stitches?? That’s insane. I’ll just keep wrapping it until it stops bleeding….

Okay 3 hours later and I’m back. The blood isn’t gushing anymore. We are at a slow trickle (at most). I think that I’ll live. This happened about a year ago when I broke one of those fancy new light bulbs. Those things are horrific. Sean accidently dropped one and it shattered it everywhere. I cleaned it up and put it in a trash bag. Well I forgot it was in there and dropped the bag on my foot. Yeah that foot was slashed to death. I probably needed about 5 stitches but again, I’m a mom. I don’t have time for stitches.

So while I know that I’ll live, it really got me thinking about how many of us moms brush off our own health issues because of the kids? I know that I do. Not just haircuts and pedicures but real health issues. I’m talking about mammograms, annual Obgyn visits, flu shots, dentist appts and obviously stitches. I’ve put them all on the back burner since I’ve had kids. I save my babysitters for important issues like school conferences, kids doctor appts and concerts (obviously).

Why do we do that? Why don’t we put our own health first? It’s like flying on an airplane. They always tell us to put on your oxygen mask before your kids. Why don’t we (moms and dads) take care of ourselves first. If we are sick and suffering then our kids suffer. Ok so I vow to schedule a bunch of appointments this week. I’ve been avoiding so many doctors for way too long. I’ve avoided the Obgyn even though I have had extreme stomach pains ever past three months. I’ve avoided the dentist. Why? Well because it’s the dentist. I think I need to see a gastro dr for an endoscopy. My dad died of stomach cancer and I know that I need to start testing early. Oh crap I just realized that I am 4 months behind on for my dermatologist appointment. That’s something that I have never slacked on. I am actually pissed that I missed that last appointment. Of course I canceled it because it was the week Sean broke his wrist.

So please tell me that I’m not the only one that avoids doctors. My husband thinks I’m nuts. He’s the complete opposite. He’s at the dr weekly….

So let’s take care of our bodies. Let’s schedule those appointments that we have avoided. Mammograms don’t hurt, the dentist isn’t that bad and really the dermatologist hurts less than my finger right now.

**** Sorry no pictures these post because no one wants to see bloody fingers sliced open by a metal can ****

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Vacation Part II: Rehoboth Beach & Hershey Park

So I am back for round two of my vacation diary!  You can catch up on Week 1 here!

The kids spent a few days at my inlaws while Owen and I headed back to New Jersey to catch up on housework and laundry!  I also had to get everything packed for the second week of our vacation.  This year we didn’t go to Avalon for our normal week.  We ended up staying local while the kids enjoyed weeks at basketball, CCD, camps and swimming lessons.  We had a very busy summer.  But towards the end of July, Joey and I were really missing our week away at the shore.  It was a little late to book a house in Avalon so we decided to head on down to Rehoboth.  We both grew up right in Delaware {Joey was only 15 minutes away from the beach town} but we never really vacationed in Rehoboth.  Yes, we spent tons of time there growing up but neither one of us actually stayed down there for a vacation.  It was so nice staying at a hotel right on the boardwalk!  We just parked our car for a few days and walked everywhere!  It was great! The beach and boardwalk were right outside our window.  Plus all of the restaurants, rides and games were a few blocks south on the boards, it was awesome!

Joey and I were in NJ and packed up and left Saturday morning to head down to the beach {for all your Jersey folks, we call it the beach in Delaware … I know it’s the shore in NJ}.  We took our time traveling down.  It is only a 3 hour drive but we decided that since we only had Owen that we would stop for lunch and hit up a few beer stores that we can never get into when we have the whole gang!  I think this trip took us 6-7 hours but it was fine.  Owen was a trooper!  We stopped for lunch at Two Stones Pub in Wilmington, DE.  We love this place! The food is awesome and the beer is superb!  We have never been disappointed!

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We finally arrived at Joey’s parents around dinnertime!  We picked up some pizza and had dinner while we were reunited with our other two boys!  They almost forgot about us!  They have a blast down there in the open yard.  They swing, play basketball and we cook s’mores on the firepit!  It’s always a nice and relaxing time! Plus they live 2 minutes from Dogfish Head Brewery so we always stop in to see what’s new.   We spent the night there and the next morning headed into our hotel in Rehoboth.

We stayed at the Henlopen Hotel.  It’s nothing fancy but it has a great view and the rooms are decent.  It definitely needs some upgrades but it was perfect for us!  We couldn’t check in right away so we decided to go to Dogfish Head for lunch!  The kids always enjoy the food and mommy and daddy always enjoy the beers!

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After lunch we headed to the beach for a few hours while we waited on our room.  I think that the kids were still a little nervous about the rough waves after last weeks knockdown.  But they still had a blast.  It was another rough day but they managed to get wet and sandy!  Owen on the other hand hid from the sun!  The kid sat like this for a good 10 minutes!  He cracks me up!

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At this point we were all anxious to get into our room.  Luckily it was ready.  So we unpacked the car and headed on up!  I fell in love with our view.   I mean look at this!  I love falling asleep to the sounds of waves crashing and since it was a cool night we slept with the door open so we could hear all the wonderful sounds of the Atlantic!

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After we checked in and unpacked a bit we headed on down to the boardwalk! Walking the boardwalk with my kids brought back sooooo many memories of my childhood.

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I remember walking up and down the boards holding my dads hand as we walked past the “hotel that had the pool out front”.  It was my favorite place to look at. I loved how my boys had to stop and check out the pool as we walked down.  I loved taking my guys into Ryan’s Gems and Junk {I think that they just call it Ryan’s now}.  They sold some of the same “junk” from when I was a kid. I made Sean pose in front of the sea shell jewelry boxes! I guess that they never go out of style {were they ever in style}.

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We stopped off at Obie’s by the Sea for dinner that night {after a hit up Candy Kitchen and the arcade}. I mean how can you not love this view at dinner!???

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The boys were a little crazy but we somehow managed to get through dinner {after I had to remove one of them from the restaurant}.  The next morning was a little windy so we decided to go for a nice walk around Rehoboth and hit up the park for a little bit and then Grotto Pizza for lunch!  We can’t go down to Rehoboth without getting some slices from Grotto’s.

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Then it was off to Funland. The rides were opening so we had to get there as soon as we could.  My inlaws came into town to spend the afternoon with us.   We had one major meltdown because of a game that we will never mention again.  Okay it was that damn claw game! Come on, it’s rigged… The 6 year old boy never win it!  But despite the breakdown we did get on a few rides! Owen went on the boats for the very first time! It’s a tradition that all kids must ride those boats {there are quite a few generations in our families that have spent many of summers ridding those boats}.

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After the rides, we decided to go down to the beach for a few hours before dinner.  It was such a gorgeous night!

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Since we loved Obie’s the night before we decided to go back again! It was the perfect spot to bring the kids and the stroller.  This night was a little smoother and the kids were pretty well behaved!

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Tuesday morning we met up with some good friends on the beach in the morning.  We spent a few hours down there playing and relaxing in the sand.  After they left it was off to lunch at Nicola Pizza and then back to the beach! That night was our last night in town so we had to go big!  We spent a ton of time back at the rides and the boys went into the Haunted Mansion for the very first time! Again this ride has been there FOREVER so we knew it was time for them to get on it. I love how they pretended to be so scared waiting in line but their faces as they came out of it were priceless! They were scared to death!  It was awesome!

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After the rides we hit up the ice cream shop and ran into a skunk in the dunes before heading back home to get some rest.

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The next morning was checkout time! Since we were so close to Joey’s parents we decided to drive there and drop off Owen.  We had a few more things that we wanted to do with the boys and it was just easier if we didn’t have the stroller {sorry Owen}!  We just had to squeeze in one more day of rides and miniature golf!!

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After we finished up the day in Rehoboth it was time to head back to my inlaws!  That leg of our trip was coming to an end!

We spent a few days relaxing at my inlaws before we packed up the car and headed to Hershey Park!  That was an interesting trip.  The boys were soooo naughty that night in the hotel that we almost didn’t go to the park the next morning.  But we sucked it up and took them!  They weren’t on their best behavior but I think that they still had a blast!

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Overall, we had an awesome time.  Yes there were a lot of moments where the boys were fighting and we were all yelling, but I know that we will look back and only remember all of the fun times and memories that were made that week.  Ok I’ll still remember Ben’s breakdown when he didn’t win the Despicable Me minion at that claw game!  But I will mainly remember the skee-ball games, the rides, and of course the massive amounts of pizza and ice cream that we consumed! I can’t wait to see what next summer brings for us!

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Remember to enter below to win your very own Silly McGilly.  Such a cute gift for your little ones!

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Roughy Toys – One 2 One

A few months ago I was asked to talk about Roughy Toys.  I am a little behind on my blog posts so I apologize for just sharing this now. But make sure that you check out this amazing toy and there may even be a little giveaway at the end of the post!

Meet Alex.

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Isn’t he adorable? Is he a monkey or is he a bear? Either way, he is an awesome guy.  Alex likes to bring lots of joy to children, especially to the ones who may not be able to afford their own toys and stuffed animals. Thanks to Roughy Toys, Alex is bringing smiles to kids all over the world.

Roughy Toys is a great company and when they reached out to me, I knew that I needed to jump on the chance to work with them.  My kids have a million stuffed animals, very few of them come with any meaning other than it’s their favorite character from a book or a television show.  But this guy, Alex,  is awesome.  He is the cutest little monkey/bear that Owen likes to cuddle with when we are hanging out in his room.  He sits right on top of his toy box in Owen’s room.

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Now why is Alex so amazing?  Well Alex is amazing because for every Alex that is purchased, one is donated to a child in need.  Amazing!  Roughy Toys also have an amazing book called Adventures of Alex.  This can either be bought together with or without Alex.  Just some of the places the donated Alex’s travel to: children’s hospitals, Ronald McDonald houses, domestic abuse shelters, orphanages, and homeless shelters.

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Roughy Toys was founded by husband and wife team, Rich & Grace Twilley after an inspiring visit to Brazil. While Rich was finishing his masters, he visited the favelas (slums) of Rio de Janeiro and São Paulo, Brazil and witnessed children in extreme poverty – children with no toys.
When he got home, he was playing with his two year old son Mark and realized that he didn’t need just another toy, he needed a more meaningful toy and Alex was born.

It’s an amazing toy.  If you would like to share a stuffed animal, please go online to Roughy Toys and purchase one today for only $29.95.  Not only will Alex put a smile on your own child’s face, but Alex will also bring joy to one other child that would never have the opportunity to purchase him.  You also have the chance to win one of your own from Roughy Toys.  They have been kind enough to do a giveaway for all of my wonderful readers.

Check out my Erin the Irish Mama Facebook page for the Roughy toy giveaway.  All you need to do is like the post, share it and leave a comment on who you would like to win one for!

Remember to check out Roughy Toys

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I am writing this post as a personal product review. I did not receive compensation for this review but I did receive a sample product.  All of the opinions stated above are my own. 

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Color Me Rad – My 1st 5K Race

So this past weekend I ran my very first 5K. I was hoping to do this last year but instead I got pregnant with my sweet little Owen.  I figured that since I was trying to exercise using my Beachbody programs and I was trying to eat a little healthier that I would attempt to run again.  So I signed up for my first 5K.  I had 2 months to train and start running again. I was going to get a treadmill from my moms house.  Well I didn’t get the treadmill to my house and I didn’t join the gym. So all of my training was non-existent. Zero, zilch, nada! I didn’t want to quit though. I was going to run {or walk} the 5k no matter what.

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My friend Leslie {from Three Peas and a Dog} was my running partner. We signed up for the Color Me Rad race at the Jersey Shore! I figured that my first race should be a fun one without worrying about times.

I felt myself getting stomach aches the week leading up to the race. I was so nervous because I wasn’t sure if I could do it. I did go on a little jog on Friday with the stroller and it wasn’t too bad but 1/4 mile is nothing compared to 3.1 miles.  I knew it would going to be a struggle for me.

Well the big day finally arrived and there was no turning back. It was go time. Leslie picked me up at 7:30am and we were on our way.

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We got there early and were able to sneak into the first heat. We had a great time. It wasn’t too bad at all. Did I run the entire time? No, but there were these three hills that I could barely walk up let alone run. But we gave ourselves goals along the way For example if we had to walk up the hill then we would  start running the moment we got to the top.

The color bombs were fun and they weren’t as bad as I thought.  I thought I was going to be pelted non stop with the color. But it was only 5 or so color tents that we had to run through.  The only problem with the color was that you had to run through it with your mouth and eyes closed. I think that I ran through it like a zombie with my hands out front making sure that I didn’t run into anything or anyone.  At one point I think I knocked a little kid over {not my fault she stopped inside to get more color}. Then I had contact issues when I didn’t shut my eyes in time. But they were still a lot of fun. Oh and I spent all day Sunday blowing out orange and pink powder!

Towards the end my heart was racing pretty fast but I could see the finish line and as much as I wanted to stop, I didn’t. They handed out some color packets right at the end so we coated ourselves with color and then made a mad dash to the end!!! Then I just sat my butt on the ground and drank a bottle of water!!! I did it! I finished my first 5K. Was I fast? No! But we finished and we had a blast!

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Thanks Leslie for encouraging me to do it!! Here’s to many more. Now I just really need to start training before the next one comes around.

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6 Months Already??

I can’t believe that my baby, my last child, my sweet little Owen is 6 months old. I don’t know where the last 6 months went. I feel like it was just yesterday that I was freaking out over the thought of adding a 3rd child to the mix. I was freaking out about another csection and about how I was going to raise 3 boys in our townhouse. But here we are 6 months later and we are all alive (somehow).  Owen is the kindest, happiest babies ever and we are all surviving in the townhouse.

I cannot get over how happy Owen makes us feel. He is such an awesome little kid. He is always smiling or laughing. The kid is just so darn sweet!  Even when I’m yelling at the other two boys he still laughs!!! At least someone finds humor in their behavior.

Owen Thomas
6 months old
27 ”
17lbs 2ozs

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Happy 6 Months to my sweet little baby boy!  Please stay this perfect!!!!!  You have been a wonderful blessing to our family and I couldn’t imagine my life without you {or your brothers}!!

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Let’s Play Catch Up {While the Boys Play Catch}

Alrighty, I know that it’s been a few weeks since I had a personal post.  As you can imagine life with 3 boys is a little bit hectic.  They keep me very busy each and every day.  Now that the weather is warming up we have been trying to do some fun family things.  We have spent a lot of time outside playing in the yard, riding bikes and had a trip to the Crayola Factory a few weekends ago.   We have also been trying to do some minor house repairs. I am trying to update Ben & Sean’s bedroom.  A long, long time ago — actually 6 years ago tomorrow — we moved into this place with just Ben.  So their room was the guest bedroom and I had painted it a light green to match my fancy Restoration Hardware bedding.  Fast forward 6 years {and two more kids later} and we no longer have that guest bedroom and that bedding is in a tote somewhere in our basement.  So I wanted to update the room a bit to make it their own.  I painted it a nice tan and I can’t wait to buy some wall name decals from Etsy for above their beds.   I also plan on finally hanging the curtains {the ones that Sean ripped down two years ago} and add a few shelves.  One of these days I will finish it and post some pictures.  But I did get the painting done one morning so that’s a start!

Last week my dryer broke — it just stopped heating.  So I waited around today for the GE repair man to show up and tell me what’s wrong with the thing.  Of course it wasn’t the dryer.  He said that I am getting no airflow so my ducts are probably in need of a good cleaning!  Now having your dryer break when you have 3 kids is not fun.  I have been hanging up my clothes all over the place.  It’s not fun washing boys socks and hanging them over the shower rod.  Then your shower rod falls down at night and scares the living daylights out of you.  Oh and during this time, Sean had an accident over night and Ben had a bloody nose.  So I had two comforters and a set of sheets to wash.  Thankfully we spent some time in Delaware this past weekend so our laundry made the trip with us.  Thanks to our moms for helping us wash our clothes! It’s just like when we brought them home over Christmas break in college!  I really wished that it could have been fixed today because I need to do some more laundry ASAP!

So I can’t believe that Owen is almost six months old and that summer is just around the corner.  The past six months have been crazy and hectic but it really has flown by.  My little guy is getting so big and I want to stop the clock and slow it down.  Owen is rolling over, trying to sit up and already eating a ton of food!  Here are some recent pictures of him.

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I mean come on, how freaking cute is this kid.  Just six months ago he was this “tiny” little 10lb chunky monkey!!

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Photography Credit: Photography by Jen Davis

Ben has been doing pretty well at school. He loves going (even though he is home sick today with a “sore throat”). He loves reading books and doing his homework. The kid has handwriting like his father…. Messy. But he is such a hard worker.  We are also working on some of his behavior issues and hopefully we can get them under control soon!  Ben has an exciting summer coming up.  He will be going to 2 weeks of CCD camp right after school ends and then he has a few other weeks of Rec Camp.  I can’t wait for him to get out there this summer and enjoy himself.  He is always so anxious when he is trying new things {hmmm not sure where he gets that one from} so I really hope that he has a fun time at his camps.

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Ben is starting to enjoy sports a little bit more.  He has started to play basketball a little bit more and wants to play for our rec league.  He also spent the weekend in Milton playing baseball with his daddy!  Both kids had some great hits.  I’m still trying to explain the game to them but tonight they did go outside together and to have a catch!  It was quite amusing watching them play.  I think between the two of them they caught the ball 3 times but they didn’t care.  They had a blast.  Ben even told me tonight that it’s not about catching the ball, it’s about having fun.  A quote that he just picked up from watching the movie The Sandlot this week.

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Sean is also enjoying school. He loves his friends and he definitely can’t wait for September. He cannot wait for kindergarten and the bus ride! I can’t wait either.  Sean also has a few weeks of camp this summer as well.  He has Kindergarten camp.  Ben went for one week last year and loved it so I decided to sign Sean up for 3 weeks.

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Between the camps, visits to Milton and my mom’s pool I plan on keeping the kids super busy this summer.  Less time for trouble and lots of time for fun.  I hope that they both learn to ride their bikes without their training wheels too.  Sean rides his bike a lot more than Ben so I have a feeling that he will be the first to get it.  But fingers crossed for both of them.

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This past weekend we took a trip down to my in-laws for some rest and relaxation!  It was nice to just hang out all weekend.  We didn’t make it into Rehoboth because Sean got sick but we did have a lot of fun cooking Smore’s on the firepit and swinging in the trees!

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So that’s the latest with our crew.  I am busy every day running to the bus stop, school, karate, grocery stores, painting bedrooms and scheduling dryer repair men!  In a few weeks school will end and the schedules will be all over the place.  I hope that it’s not too crazy and we all have a fun and exciting summer!  We hope to make it up to Hershey Park, take the boys camping for the first time and get to the Jersey Shore as much as possible!

What are you summer plans for the kids? Pool? Camps?

Have a good weekend!!!!!

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My Crazy Mind

I don’t know what it is but my mind is on overdrive these days.  I have so much going on but I can’t just pick one thing and stick with it.  I have a to-do list of about 700 things and I am in the middle of about 10 projects but I can’t complete anything.

I don’t know if it’s the third kid adding to all of the craziness in my brain but I am getting so frustrated. I am so used to order and control and ORGANIZATION.  I have lists about other lists.  That’s the type of person I am. I am slightly OCD {about certain things, not all} and I feel like I am losing control of it all.

For example here’s a little bit from my to-do list:

1. Exercise – I have been trying to do Hip Hop Abs for 2 weeks now. I just need to put the DVD in and START. I need to stop all of the damn excuses…..

2. Dishes. Oh dear lord the dishes. Well it’s just the darn bottles! Can they please create a cycle on dishwashers called “Dr. Brown’s”. It would make my life soooooo much easier.
3. Create a food journal – but not based on the last two weeks.  Back on track MONDAY! NO EXCUSES.
4. Create a personal growth/goal journal. I need to start writing shit down…..
5. Eat healthy — DUH!
6. Fix the boys room so they feel like they have their own individual style in a shared room {i.e. curtains, paint, shelves, pictures, etc}
7. Fix the toilet seats in two of the three bathrooms. Boys!!!!
8. Fix my kitchen sink {I have the parts but I don’t know where to start}. Stupid fancy faucet!
9. Stain the steps on my back “deck”
10. Organize the boys clothes {somewhat done.  I just need a few extra totes and either donate, sell or get rid of the clothes that Owen has outgrown}
11. Organize the basement {aka – toy room from HELL}
12. Organize and purge my clothes that I haven’t worn since I worked 6 1/2 years ago – dear Lord it’s been that long since I had contact with humans that didn’t wear diapers but still complained about too much shit.
13. The ongoing piles of laundry. I used to love laundry but now I can’t keep track of what’s clean and what’s dirty.  Who hates when they think that they are on top of things by throwing in an “extra load” then realizing when it’s time for the dryer that there is still a pile in there that’s only half dry…..
14. Organize my kitchen drawers. I have so much crap and so few cabinets. I store Owen’s bibs in my pasta drainer!
15. Don’t even look in my coat closet. You open it up things may rain down on you {and it won’t be dollar bills y’all}
16. Find a spot for Owen’s pack and play! Right now his changing table is my dining room table so good luck solving this mystery! Oh and please ignore the pile of boys artwork and papers behind Owen’s changing pad.  I have not thrown out ONE thing since Ben started preschool back in 2010. Yeah… do the math. That’s 4 years worth of papers from Ben and 2 years from Sean.  I swear that I am NOT a hoarder but their shit is so darn cute.  How can I throw it out?

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17. Oh I just discovered that from Sean climbing on my kitchen cabinets that he split the wood in a very expensive cabinet door. Do I use wood glue? Do I replace? UGHHHHH. Yes, I know that my cabinets are dirty. I was cleaning them when I spotted the big crack

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18. Have Joey call Moen to order a new toilet paper holder – THANK GOD for MOEN and their free replacement parts. We have definitely taken advantage of that with these boys and our bathroom/kitchen products

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It’s an ongoing list and this is only half of it. I have so many projects and so little time {and money} to complete them all.

How do you guys handle this stuff? There are things that my husband can/will do {i.e. he does all of the yardwork, planting, etc} but I try and do indoor stuff like painting and fixing things. He works so much that he doesn’t have time at all during the week to do a lot but take out the trash at 10:30pm when he gets home. So when the weekend rolls around I would rather him occupy the kids so I can do laundry, clean, etc. But he does do laundry and lots of other things for me. So I can’t complain about that at all. I am home all day but I still don’t have the time to get things done. I want to just hire a handy man to do so many things but dear lord who can afford one? I just finally got a cleaning lady every few weeks to help me out with the dusting and the bathrooms.

I feel like I have no time for myself. And now that Owen is around I want to spend time during the day with him and not plopping him down in a seat while he watches me clean dishes. But some days that’s what happens. But he isn’t that kid that will sit long and since I know for a fact that he is my last baby I want to spend as much time as I can with him. I want to lay on the floor and roll with him, sing him songs, shake the rattles. I don’t want to miss one moment with this kid. So how am I going to accomplish everything on this list??? HELP!!!!

PS. Since I started typing this I did change one toilet seat! Woo Hoo!!!!

So tell me moms {and dads} how do you get it all done?  I am so overwhelmed that I feel like the walls are closing in on me because I can’t do it all. It’s my job to do these things and I can’t even keep my floor clean let alone take some time for myself.

Thank goodness that I love these kids so much. They are pretty darn cute, right?
Callaway Family Spring 2014_03

Photography Credit: Photography by Jen Davis

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The Oldest is Still My Baby

Okay so I took some time this week to talk about Owen and Sean so today it’s Ben’s turn.  I have so much to share about Ben but not sure I want to put it all out there. We are having some behavioral issues at home and at some point I am sure that I will share a little more but it’s been a huge struggle and we are trying to figure it all out.  In the meantime let’s chat about how amazing this kid is.

He had his very first Kindergarten play this week.  I think that I was much more nervous than he was.  He is so much like me with the OCD and anxiety and I thought for sure that he would get up there, see the crowd and not do his line.  But boy the kid proved me wrong.  He looked so cute in his piggy hat. Speaking of the hat, the play was performed on three separate nights – they split up the 9 kindergarten classes into three nights {3 classes a night} but they shared the same hats.  I wonder why the school has had a problem with lice this year? HMMMM. But anyway.  Ben was AWESOME! His line was about half way through the show and he went up to the microphone said his line and walked back to his row.  Perfection!

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This kid is truly a smart and talented kid but he is still very shy and so afraid of what others think about him. He feels like he can never be good enough and as a mom that breaks my heart. I try so hard to teach him to just be himself {but stop picking your nose}.  He wants to fit in but he is afraid sometimes of getting involved. I was always a shy kid filled with anxiety and I see that in him.  I want to break that cycle now so he doesn’t grow up being afraid and full of anxiety like I still have today.  I try to push him to do new things so he can make new friends, try new things and just enjoy being a kid. He is coming along and I am so proud of him.  

He is excelling in school and I just got his latest report card. His teacher said that he is a wonderful reader and great at addition.  He struggles with handwriting and subtraction! But hey it’s kindergarten he is only going to get better from here. I can’t believe how well he is doing at school.  When I look at the work that he brings home I often wonder if he is bored.  He has perfect worksheets {except for the handwriting} but the back of the pages are full of drawings and designs.  Is he bored? Is there too much free time at school? Who knows but as long as he is happy and doing well, I am happy!!!

I still can’t believe that he has been in school for 4 years now {3 years in pre-school and he is now almost done kindergarten}. Here’s a quick look at Ben’s school pictures over the years.  I definitely have a favorite of all 5 pictures {red sweater}.  Which one do you like the best? I can’t believe how much he has changed, yet stayed the same over the past 4 years!

Preschool Pictures – 2 1/2 Year old class, 3 Year old class and 4 Year old class

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Fall 2013 & Spring 2014 Kindergarten Pictures.  I am not sure what they did to his glasses during the Fall picture but it’s horrible.  They could have at least taken them off or put them on his head properly! Thank goodness I have a great friend who is my own personal photographer {Photography by Jen Davis}. I can’t wait for our photo shoot in early May! I’ll have some more pics to share soon.

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Ben is not a sports person.  He really loves the iPad and all of the star wars, angry birds and lego games that he can find.  I think that he likes it a little too much in my opinion, but I let him use it because it makes him happy.  But if he doesn’t finish a game on the first try he gets extremely frustrated and down on himself.  I often hear him say “why did God make me so bad” or “why can’t I do this right”.  It breaks my heart but I explain to him to never give up and some things take time but they are worth all of the hard work. 

This past week we went to a birthday party at the YMCA.  It was a sports themed party {something that he doesn’t like}.  He had anxiety going in but I tried to help him relax and told him that he didn’t have to participate in the soccer game but he could play with some other toys on the side.  The first 45 minutes he didn’t leave my side but thankfully after a few bites of pizza and a lacrosse stick he started to play with his friends.  Then when they handed out basketballs as party favors he was finally in a good mood.  Now he LOVES basketball.  I want to encourage him to play but I am also afraid that once I sign him up he won’t want to do it. This is the hard part.  Do I spend the money and then take him to the class which he will hate and never want to go back or do I just say this is a phase and not sign him up.  I am at a loss.  Sean loves soccer but after 10 minutes he wants to play on the playground.  It’s so frustrating to spend a ton of money and then have them cry on the sidelines.

Ben is still enjoying karate but it has been a struggle to get there.  But once he is there he enjoys it. I don’t know if we will continue it after summer is over.  I want Ben to be involved in something.  I don’t care what it is as long as he is doing something other than the computer all day.  I’m open to suggestions???!!!!

He is an awesome big brother to Owen.  The boy loves his little brother so much — even if he tends to be a little too rough, I know deep down he is smitten with the kid.  And Owen just adores Ben {and Sean}.

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He still really struggles with Sean though.  He cares about him a lot but I know that Sean tends to bother him. Ben is awesome at figuring out video games and Sean struggles.  Ben just doesn’t want to show Sean the way.  He doesn’t understand that other kids may need help with those sorts of things {much like Ben needs help at sports}.  He just wants to be left alone to do his own thing.  But on occasion he will help his brother out.  He is also my little con artist.  Just the other day he convinced Sean to rub his head and he would help Sean beat a level on Star Wars.

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Oh and I really think that I am going to be in trouble with Ben when it comes to the ladies.  I swear each school year he has a new crush.  We all remember his crush from last year {A Shiny Gold Necklace}.  This year it’s a girl at his bus stop {who is also in his kindergarten class}.   She is such a cutie pie. He told me that everyone on the bus says that they are going to get married.  I think it’s cute, he on the other hand does not.  But he tries so hard to get her attention.  On her birthday he made her a special card.   Then the other day they made a brown letter E – brown E {brownie – get it}.  Well his crush lost hers so he spent the afternoon tracing and cutting out a new one for her – only to have her find her own the next day. I know that he was crushed but he still is such a sweetheart.  God this kid melts my heart every day.

This picture describes Ben to me.  He is in a world of his own and we are all just trying to figure it out.  He has a heart of gold but really struggles with a lot in life.  He is a deep thinker and is always asking the tough questions but the boy loves to have fun.

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I love this kid more than life itself.  He will always have a special place in my heart because he is the boy that made me a mom for the very first time.  He is the first person that ever projectile vomited on me or pooped down my leg.  He is the first person that I put before myself when it came to life and all it’s crazy issues.  He was the person that gave me a reason to keep moving forward after my father passed away 3 weeks after his birth.  He has given me health scares, anxiety and emotional breakdowns but I wouldn’t have it any other way…. Yes he may look 100% like my husband but he is definitely my son.  

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Summer is RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER!! Do you want to feel comfortable in your swimsuit? I know that I want to not hide under my towel when I’m sitting on the beach this summer and I am going to continue to keep moving!  How about you join me and we can hold each other accountable? I have a great team that I work with and you can too.   Plus there are some great deals right now on a few programs that can help you reach those goals!

If you want to know what Beachbody, Shakeology or the 21 Day Fix is all about please drop me a quick email, call me, visit my Facebook page or just run on over and check out my Beachbody Website. I am available all of the time {even at 3am when I am up feeding Owen} to chat about what your goals may be.  I may not have all of the answers but I have an awesome team that does.  We hold each other accountable and we build each other up if we are having a hard day.

CLICK HERE to order your Beachbody Products and Challenge Packs

CLICK HERE to order your Shakeology.

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April Promotions: 

Save $90 on the Summer Slimdown T25 Challenge Pack

GET IT DONE: IN  25 MINUTES A DAY!

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Yes, I Cheated…

On the 21 Day Fix that is… not on the husband!

I have had a rough few days with the kids and like I said before I am an emotional eater.  Well once I dropped the not so sweet angels off at the bus stop and at school I came home and had some cold pizza.  For some reason I cannot stop eating pizza. It’s my weakness. Even cold DiGiorno pizza {It’s not delivery, it’s DiGiorno}.

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It happens but I am going to pick myself back up and keep on going.  One rough day is not going to stop me.  That’s what I am trying to learn in this whole process. Not to let one slip up derail my whole day, which turns into a week then a month.  I won’t let it stop me from reaching my goal… which is hitting my goal weight {18lbs to go} and wearing a cute white top that doesn’t show a saggy muffin top.  I want to feel more comfortable in my skin.

This picture was 3 years ago and I liked my body then. I felt good then. I want to be there again.

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So I think for lunch I will have another awesome shake and reflect on why I’m eating the cold pizza.  One of my Beachbody coaches {hey Nikki} suggested on our Facebook page that when you cheat, it may be because you are bored.  So maybe I am just bored eating the same foods and I need to go through the 21 Day Fix book again and reboot my meals.  I have been eating the same things for almost 2 1/2 months now.  So maybe I need to switch.  Also, after this round I need to get a new workout routine. I love the programs in there but it’s good to switch it up. I keep going back and forth on what I want to try so today my goal is to figure out AND ORDER my next fitness program!!!!!!

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Well gang, the weekend is here.  Spring Break is starting today when those kids get out of school.  So say a prayer that we all make it through the next week without going off the plan and my exercise routine.  We will be spending some days down in Delaware and I know I will be packing my containers, my shakes and my videos.  Just because I am in a different state doesn’t mean that I can’t continue to reach my goals.

Sooooo are you willing to give it a try? Summer is RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER!! Do you want to feel comfortable in your swimsuit? I know that I want to not hide under my towel when I’m sitting on the beach this summer and I am going to continue to keep moving!  How about you join me and we can hold each other accountable? I have a great team that I work with and you can too.   Plus there are some great deals right now on a few programs that can help you reach those goals!

If you want to know what Beachbody or the 21 Day Fix is all about please drop me a quick email, call me, visit my Facebook page or just run on over and check out my Beachbody Website.

CLICK HERE to order your Beachbody Products and Challenge Packs

CLICK HERE to order your Shakeology.

CLICK HERE for my Facebook Page

April Promotions: 

Save $90 on the Summer Slimdown T25 Challenge Pack

GET IT DONE: IN  25 MINUTES A DAY!

Save $70 on the Brazil Butt Lift

 

photo

 If you like what you just read please click to send a quick vote for me on Top Mommy Blogs- The best mommy blog directory featuring top mom bloggers