Me Before Her

She's stuck betweenwho she is,who she wants to be,and who she should be.

(Quote from Pinterest.)

If you told me about a year ago, that I would be signing myself up for a blog conference, I would have laughed at you. You see, I’m naturally a shy person and the thought of being in a room full of strangers scares me.

Back in the days of Xanga, I used to write a lot. I would write weekly recaps of Sunday sermons and church activities, vacations, and daily life. If I really loved something, I would tell everyone to go buy it. If there’s something fun or interesting to do, I would tell you about it. I recently went back and reread some posts and boy, did I write a lot. But this was all before getting married and starting a family.

I love being married and I love having my daughter- but some where along the way, I’ve lost myself. The me who loved to create things. The me who loved to share ideas with others. The me who loved to spend time with people. The me before her. This in no way means I don’t absolutely adore my daughter or the life I live. I actually love where I am in life but now that the fog of being a new mother has lifted and my daughter is gaining more and more independence, I need to find myself again and make time for me.

The past three years has been so life changing and rewarding. I love my sweet A and how she looks to me for everything but I’ve also been craving something more– something just for me and NOT feeling guilty about it. I’ve been blessed to be able to stay at home with her and care for her every need. Not all moms get to do that. My own mother worked all the time while I was growing up so I don’t take the fact that I was able to stay home for granted.

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5 Pros & Cons of Being an Older Mom

IMG_0986Despite being categorized as an Advanced Maternal Age (AMA) mom, I don’t look quite my age so I don’t get that many comments about being an older mom. If you look closely though, you will see my many gray hairs and fine lines but for the most part, people rarely guess my age correctly.

I got married in 2009 when I was 34 years old. We probably should have gotten started right away in building a family, but we waited a year. After the year passed, we started trying, but not that actively due to being busy with our careers. We eventually got pregnant in January of 2011, but that ended early. We got pregnant again in October of 2011, but that ended early as well. After that, we took a break to heal both physically and emotionally, and in September 2012, we got pregnant which resulted in the birth of our daughter in May 2013 when I was 38 years old.

I’ve read one too many articles and heard one too many opinions about how old you should be when you have kids. Everyone says you should have your first child before you turn 35 because the risks in pregnancy go up after that. But you can’t really control when you get pregnant. If you could, I’m sure there are plenty of people who would have had kids earlier or later than they did. But it’s out of your control. I do believe though, that our daughter was born at the perfect time for us and where we were mentally and emotionally.

When I was in the my 20’s, I knew I wanted to get married and have a baby before I got “too old.” What I considered to be “too old” at that time was someone who was 30. Looking back now, I had no clue as to what being old is. I’m well past 30 and I don’t feel old! View Post

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Ruby for Target

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Have you heard of the The Mother Company?  It’s a company founded by two moms that provide resources for parents to raise their children well. They have quality programing, books, and parenting advice to nurture the social and emotional well being of children. I love their tagline- Helping parents raise good people. How awesome is that!

During the month of June, The Mother Company is hosting FREE family events at a few Target locations in the LA area. We had the opportunity to attend the special story time event with Ruby from Ruby’s Studio this past weekend. Ruby is the star of Ruby’s Studio which is a show created by The Mother Company where children learn about different topics that relate to them such as feelings, safety, siblings, and friendship. Such important topics for kids to learn! The stories and books also cover these topics and it’s presented in a way where children can understand through relatable characters. My Little A enjoyed the stories so much we had to check out the selection of books that were on sale at Target.

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We picked out Miles is the Boss of His Body and even got it autographed by Ruby herself! We loved this story about how we are in charge of our bodies and we don’t have to do anything or have anything done to us if we don’t want. It reminded me of this article which empowers kids to take charge of their own bodies which I feel is such an important topic about respecting ourselves and others’ personal boundaries. We also got to take a picture with her! My Little A was definitely star-struck.

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The girls enjoyed their gift bags which included these cute “reading” glasses and delicious organic snacks from Fruigees, Barnana, and Matt’s Munchies. They also had samples from Morning Glory Confections and Coolhaus!target08

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We even met Bullseye!

We also got to meet Abbie Schiller, the CEO and founder of The Mother Company and chatted with her about her amazing company. We were so impressed with what they stand for and what they’ve created. These books and DVDs are great starting points for important discussions with your kids about staying safe, what to do with some big feelings such as frustration, jealousy, being left out, anger, and personal boundaries. I can’t wait to add more books and watch the shows with my preschooler!

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In light of some of the tragic things that are happening constantly around us, I am thankful for resources like this for parents to help their kids to be better. We can’t control what happens in the world. We can only control how we raise our kids and the things that are in our little world. But hopefully the little things we do in the lives of our little ones can make a huge impact by raising children to love, have compassion, have empathy, know how to control their frustrations and anger, and just be better.

Thank you The Mother Company and Target for having us! We had such a great time and can’t wait for more amazing events and resources to help our children become good people! Have you heard about The Mother Company or Ruby’s Studio? Check them out and tell me what you think!

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What’s in My Diaper Bag?

Now that Little A is a full on toddler, the things I carry in my diaper bag are different than when she was younger. You would think that it would be less but I feel like I have to carry more things around!

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Fawn Design Bag– I recently got this bag when they restocked and I am in love! I love how it’s functional yet stylish. It’s also quite roomy. I’ll have to do a review of it at another time. Every since Little A started walking, I have been carrying a backpack as a diaper bag. It keeps my hands free so that if I need to chase after her or carry her, it’s easy to do so..

Snacks– I carry tons of snacks. I know everyone has their opinions about snacking and kids but when your toddler is hungry, you need to give them something. I carry anything from crackers, pretzels, cheese, fruit, and juice. I never know when I’ll need to have something on hand to feed her so I make sure my bag is fully stocked.

Diapers & Wipes–  haven’t potty trained Little A yet so I still carry diapers and wipes. I love the diapers from Target’s Up&Up brand. We’ve never had any issues or leakage with them. The wipes of choice are Honest Company’s wipes. I love how they are fragrance free, strong, and not too wet.

Crayons, Paper, Stickers, Trains, Puzzles– I make sure I have some crayons, paper and stickers for Little A to draw, color or use so that when we are at a restaurant or have to wait somewhere, she has something to do. There’s nothing worse than a toddler with nothing to do- they will find something to do and it’s usually trouble so I make sure I have something on hand to keep her engaged. She usually carries some of her Thomas the Train trains with her into the car so she always has those in hand. I also keep a simple puzzle or matching game from the Target Dollar Spot with me. You can never have too much to keep your toddler occupied!

Change of Clothes– I still pack a change of clothes because I just don’t know if she will get whatever outfit she is wearing dirty or ripped from running around or falling on the ground.

Miscellaneous– I make sure I carry sunscreen, hat, and a little first aid kit which consists of an assortment of bandaids, hand sanitizer and neosporin to go. Since Little A loves to run around, I never know when I might need to patch up a little boo-boo.

What are some things that you carry in your diaper bag?

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No Party This Year!

A few months ago, there was a thread started by one of the members of my mommy group about when we were going to throw our kids a birthday party. (All of our kids’ are born either in April, May or June- every other weekend is party time for our group!) I responded that I wasn’t planning on throwing her a party while everyone else listed the date their child’s party was going to be. I know.. I know.. I sound like such a mean parent that I wasn’t planning on throwing a party for her. I felt a little bit bad about it but I hadn’t even thought about throwing her a party. It’s not because I don’t love her or don’t want to celebrate. We love to celebrate and party.

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For her first birthday, we threw her a huge and elaborate party where we rented out Pretend City Children’s Museum and invited about 140 people. Our guests had a great time. Our one year old– not so much. She didn’t nap that day and was overwhelmed with the amount of people and attention so it was actually a really horrible day for her. Even if my friend was telling me about CFW and their fantastic catering services for parties. I wish she could have enjoyed playing there because she normally loves playing at Pretend City. And since we rented out the whole place, it was not crawling with hundreds of kids. She was miserable and cried for most of the time… at least our photographer was able to get some decent pictures but if you look closely, I look stressed (because Little A was pretty miserable the whole time) and Little A’s face is red and tear-stained. View Post

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