4/52

Thursday, January 28, 2016

*A photograph of each of my children, once a week in 2016*


Cohen
The other day as we were brushing his teeth I noticed a little tooth growing behind his super loose tooth.  Remind me why he is losing his teeth when he was just a little chub like yesterday?  Time you're a thief.



Lola
I told her no popsicle and she said, "ahh hell no."  Okay, not really but she did knock the baby swing over in a furious tantrum.  Oh Lord Jesus help me survive life with this one...



Remy
Pretty girl has found her voice and her new favorite activity is screaming at the top of her lungs.  Luckily she is doing it out of joy otherwise we wouldn't be laughing so hard when she does it.


xoxo,

The Cutest Little Cups That I Ever Did See

Tuesday, January 26, 2016

*This is a sponsored post on behalf of Philips Avent.  A special thanks for the opportunity to review the My Penguin Sippy Cup.  All opinions are my own.*


Okay, we all love Fridays but I REALLY love Fridays.  What used to be
"Donut Friday" has now turned into "Cuddle Friday."  Sounds amazing, right?  Since Cohen doesn't have school on this day, the four of us cuddle up in bed with our milk and cereal, and watch cartoons until we feel ready to get up and get going.  I can't tell you how good it feels to start the day off on our own pace - it is the perfect way to end a long week!  However, you know what I don't love - leaking sippy cups.  The other day Lola's cup decided to leak all over my nice clean sheets and freshly laundered comforter.  I'm quite certain that the majority of the milk ended up on my linens and not in the cup.  No matter how tight I sealed the lid or how hard I pushed in the valve, the milk would somehow find its way out. 

I was on a mission to find a leak-proof cup for my Lola Girl.  But I'm rather particular when it comes to my sippy cup collection.  Philips Avent has always been a brand that I have trusted with my family so when the opportunity arose to try the new My Penguin Sippy Cup, I was beyond thrilled!  

There are several features about this cup that stand out, especially to a mom with a super busy toddler:
--My Penguin Cup has an angled spout with a built-in valve for 100% leak free drinking.  (The valve is so easy to put back into the cup - my husband seriously didn't believe me when I showed him!)  This also helps develop a natural drinking position. 


--It has trainer handles with soft grips that are integrated into the cup's shape - this helps toddlers hold it independently.

--Most importantly, the cup is made from BPA free material and all parts are dishwasher safe for easy cleaning!



Another one of my favorite features are the measurement marks on the side.  My poor Lola has tummy troubles and has to take medicine dissolved in juice on a daily basis.  I like to dilute the juice with water, so the the measurement marks have helped me ensure that I am giving her more parts water and less parts juice.  Plus the cute penguin design has actually made Lola want to drink her juice when usually it is a chore to get her to do so!



I am definitely sold on the Philips Avent My Penguin Cup.  Our Friday morning cuddle fests have continued on, but this time with less of a mess, which means more snuggle time with my littles!



Buy It!
 Visit Philips Avent online to find your closest My Penguin Cup retailer!  But you better hurry because this a winter exclusive cup that is only available for a limited time!  


Share with me!
What are your favorite sippy cup features for your kiddos?  

xoxo,



Baby Favorites Newborn to 3 Months

Monday, January 25, 2016

I remember getting ready to start our baby registry for Cohen and being completely overwhelmed.  There were SO many things people will say you need when in fact, you don't need them at all.  Honestly, with your first baby you have no clue as to what you will need or even use.  It is like you are getting thrown to the wolves to fend for yourselves!  Then, when you have your second baby, you remember what came in handy and literally buy that stuff in bulk.  When Lola was this age I shared some of my favorite baby products that we used with her.  I thought I would update my list and share some of my favorites for Remy this time around to hopefully help some first time mamas out there feel not so overwhelmed like I did!


Here are a few of my favorite products for newborn to 3 months.

1.  Fisher Price Rock n Play - This thing was used for all three babies and it was a lifesaver.  We used this in our room instead of a bassinet.  One of my favorite features is the incline which definitely helped my gassy and fussy babies.  Plus it folds up and is super portable, unlike the Pack and Play.  Ours is over five years old and Fisher Price has added some great features to the Rock n Play since, but I promise you, this is something you definitely want to add to your registry!

2.  Levana Ayden Baby Video Monitor - When Cohen turned two, I bought our first video monitor from Craigslist.  I still use it with Lola even though it is comparable in size to a small television.  I love this Levana Ayden Baby Monitor for so many reasons!  It is small, portable, easy to use and has great features like music, a push-to-talk button and temperature monitoring.  I shared my review on it a few weeks ago and I am still loving this monitor.

3.  Boon Grass Countertop Drying Rack - I purchased one of these for Lola and since then I actually got another one off of a garage sale site for $3.  I use our Grass for bottles, pacifiers and even my pumping parts.  It sits nicely on the corner of our countertop and is super easy to clean.  This is my go-to baby shower gift for all of my friends.

4.  Ollie Swaddle - This my friends, is what I refer to as the Cadillac of all baby swaddles.  I can't explain how OBSESSED I am with our Ollie Swaddle.  Definitely check out their website to learn more about the story behind this swaddle because it truly is amazing.  This swaddle is super easy to use, stretchy and the fabric is soft as ever. 

5.  Little Tikes Sit & Play Bouncer by Diono - I reviewed this seat for Lola and we have gotten a ton of use out of it for Remy this time around.  One of my favorite features about this bouncer is the fact that it is more upright than a typical bouncer, which has definitely helped with the spit-up factor.  It also has sound and vibration features which are nice for the newborn stage.

6. Playtex VentAire Baby Bottle - These bottles have been used with all three of my babies.  Like the Rock n Play, the technology has been updated in the last five years but these bottles are still my favorite.  They have minimal parts which make cleaning easy and Playtex sells a variety of nipple sizes to help with moms who transition between the bottle and breast.  Plus the angled shape helps eliminate bubbles so no air can get into baby's tummy during a feeding.

7.  Ergo Original Soft Baby Carrier - My friend let me borrow her Ergo and I have become a true fan of this baby carrier.  I love how I can hold Remy snuggly against my chest but continue to get work done.  I will be honest, it did take some time to figure out how to put it on quickly but I think I have it down now.  I'm kind of obsessed with the fur lined Ergo, but considering this is our last baby, there is no need to purchase another baby carrier I won't use too much longer. 



Hopefully this list is a good starter for some of your first time mamas who aren't quite sure where to start.  But let me straightforward with you - when it doubt, register for diapers and wipes every time.

xoxo,


3/52

Thursday, January 21, 2016

*A photograph of each of my children, once a week in 2016*


Cohen
My sweet boy gets sweeter by the day - but don't get me wrong, he still has his moments.  Tonight I heard him get ticked at Lola and yell, "Stop it you Poopy Ass!"  Good thing he couldn't see my face as I disciplined him for that one.

Lola
She decided to serenade Remy and I with "Let It Go" not once, but twice the other day as we were getting ready for the day.  I need to remember this sweet moments for times when she, oh you know, throws my phone and cracks the screen.

 Remy
 Oh hey there pretty blue eyes!  This one has been full of snuggles, laughs and smiles lately and I will do everything in my power to soak it all up...until she decides to soak me in projectile spit up or explosive blow outs.


xoxo,


 


New Techology Slashes Electricity Bills for Texans

Wednesday, January 20, 2016

This is a sponsored post on behalf of Energy Ogre.


I'm all about finding ways to save money, especially as our family grows!  Because as the seasons change, so do our electricity bills.  Every year I think they get more expensive, which can really kill the pocketbook.  Like yesterday, when our furnace ran for over 23 hours continuously! Seriously, I'm cringing just thinking about our next electric bill.  Luckily, if you live in a deregulated market in Texas (and millions do), there is a new technology company that is helping people save 40-60% off their energy bills.

First, take just a few minutes and use this savings calculator to learn what you could be paying based on your usage. Energy Ogre is a one-of-a-kind technology company. The technology scours the current offers in Texas and finds the best deal for you. Homeowners, apartment renters, business owners are all saving some SERIOUS money.

Important Note: Energy Ogre is NOT an energy provider and the company doesn't get paid by any energy provider for preferential treatment. They only find the best deal for the end consumer. They are a highly rated company with 5.0 reviews.

After using the calculator and learning how much you can save, you have the option to pay Energy Ogre $10 a month to become your "administrative assistant" and make changes on your behalf. This takes the hassle out of dealing with your energy providers and you just sit back and save big money!


Here are a just a few of the reviews that you can read on Energy Ogre's Facebook Page.


Alisha: "My bill got up to almost $200 a month in the summer in a small one-bedroom apartment. Now my bill has never been even close to $50 a month. I am so happy and thankful for this company who helped me save some much needed money for other bills!"

Bernie: "Went with Energy Ogre 3 months ago, previously w/TXU for years @ .095 / KWH - bills ran anywhere from $160 - $300 - first three months w/ Energy Ogre - bills were Sept - $49, Oct.- $59, and Nov.-$57 - and we're an all electric house."


Adam: "Energy Ogre is the best! I got out of a contract with an early termination fee and still saved lots of money!"



Houston Business Journal: "Houston-based Energy Ogre’s focus is on electricity but at its heart, this is a technology company that uses analytics to find a rate that fits their clients’ demand profile."


Kathy: "Got my first bill after signing up with Ogre and my bill dropped from the high $200s to $85! I was in shock .. but very happy!"







The personnel behind Energy Ogre have been involved with the Texas electricity markets since well before they deregulated in 2002. This group has built power plants, scheduled fuel and electricity and even owned and managed Retail Electricity Providers in the recent past. In 2013 they decided to create Energy Ogre to help end use customers fully unlock the benefits of the deregulated electricity markets.

No-Bake Peanut Butter Protein Balls

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #StartWithJifPowder #CollectiveBias


It's a new year so that means a new opportunity to start with a clean slate.  I was recently given the okay by my doctor to start working out again and I'm determined to lose these last 5 lbs to hit my pre-pregnancy weight.  While I'm an avid runner and exerciser, my weakness is in the food department.  I'm a huge snacker and I will start the day off great but by the afternoon I turn into a ravenous beast!  Plus the extra calories I'm burning from nursing do not help my hunger problem either.  I decided I needed to stock up on some snacks that would be easy to grab and eat as I continued on with my busy day. But I also needed ones that weren't full of unnecessary sugars and fat but offered a good amount of protein to keep me going until the next meal.  I hated that I would ruin a good workout by succumbing to the super sugary snacks that would basically deplete any hard work that I had done for that day.  And we all know that is not how I'm going to get back into those skinny jeans again.  A little while back I had made these yummy No-Bake Peanut Butter Protein Balls that I just kept in the fridge to grab and snack on when the hunger beast started to strike.  They were super easy to make so I figured I would try them out again.

While I was at Walmart stocking up on the ingredients, I noticed Jif Peanut Powder located a few shelves above the peanut butter.  Now, I love me some peanut butter - especially on apples or bananas.  And while it is loaded with tons of protein, it is higher in fat than I'd like to use in these protein balls.  Jif Peanut Powder is made from just one ingredient - fresh roasted peanuts - and has no added sugar or salt like the competitors.  Plus is has the same amount of nourishing protein as traditional peanut butter, but with 85% less fat.  Jif Peanut Powder was the perfect way to add the peanut taste to my protein balls but with less calories and sugar!

 


As I started to get things ready for my recipe, I was quickly reminded how easy my No-Bake Peanut Butter Protein Balls were to make!

You Need:

For Peanut Butter
--3 tablespoons of Jif Peanut Powder
--1 1/2 tablespoons of Water
--1/2 teaspoon of sugar

 No-Bake Peanut Butter Protein Balls Ingredients
--1 cup of Old Fashioned Oats
--1/2 cup of Chocolate Chips
--1/4 cup of Honey
--1 tablespoon of protein powder
--Jif Peanut Powder mixture


How to Make the Protein Balls:
1.  Begin by combining your Jif Peanut Powder, water and sugar together in a small bowl.  Combine until mixture is smooth. 





2.  In a larger bowl, combine the oats, chocolate chips and honey.  Also include your Jif Peanut Powder mixture into the bowl.


3.  Mix the ingredients together and cover the bowl.  Put it in the refrigerator for about 30 minutes to set.

4.  While your mixture is setting, line a baking sheet with a piece of wax or parchment paper.  Then, after 30 minutes, take your mixture of out of the fridge and form little balls out of it.  Place the balls on the wax paper and put it back into the refrigerator for one more hour.






5.  Finally, take out and serve chilled!



These things are amaze-balls!  Plus the Jif Peanut Powder offers a similar peanut taste just like I would get if I used regular peanut butter - but with less sugar and fat!  I keep my Peanut Butter Protein Balls in a container in the fridge and just pop a few out at a time when I need a little snack, especially after a heavy workout.  My sweet tooth can be satisfied yet I'm not ruining my hard work from my exercise by overindulging on cookies or other sweet treats.  I'm confident I will meet my pre-pregnancy goal weight in no time and can't wait to fit back into those skinny jeans! 


Share with Me!
Now that I've shared with you a simple recipe using Jif Peanut Powder, I'd love to hear how you would use it in your favorite recipe too!


xoxo,

2/52

Monday, January 18, 2016

*A photograph of each of my children, once a week in 2016*


Cohen
This kid would live in his pajamas all day long if I left him.  However, it was a snowy day and our town decided not to plow, so I kept him home from school.  So snow days totally call for pajamas all day!

Lola
Oh this one is full of piss and vinegar here lately.  We didn't really hit the Terrible Twos with Cohen, but Miss Lola has shown us a whole new meaning to the term.  I am just crossing my fingers that this means we will surpass the Threenager...


Remy
This is my favorite face this kid makes.  Here she is in the middle of talking to her dad as well as showing me her surprised reaction to the flash of my camera.  But check out those baby blues!


And this one just because.
Be still, my heart.


xoxo,

Remy 3 Month Update

Thursday, January 14, 2016



Remy // 3 months
Weight:14ish lbs
Height: longer than 23 inches

This past month has been full of firsts - Remy's first Christmas, first New Year's and her first time escaping the swaddle.  I guess I should have expected this considering my other two kids are pure Houdinis as well.  Sigh.  I probably need to start considering the dreaded and terrible transition from the swaddle...

But we're a biggy girl now and a solid 3 months old!  The more personality she exhibits, the more excited I get about the six month mark, which is my favorite age.  Remy is more baby and less infant these days.  I love to look at my TimeHop photos and see how much she looks like both Cohen and Lola.  Her eyes are still blue which makes me think we have our blue eyed baby.  And her hair - she actually has some still which is a miracle!

Here is what Remy has been up to the last month:

Size
Remmers has quickly grown out of her newborn clothing and is comfortably in 3-6 month things.  I forgot how small jammies run, so I have pulled out a few of her 6 month sleepers because her little toes were curling up at the end of her other ones.  I bumped her up to a size 2 diaper after she had two explosive blowouts all over herself and of course I got in the way too.  She is probably about a pound heavier than Lola at this point, but I think they are pretty similar in size.  I'm thinking she is about 14 pounds give or take a few ounces.  We will go next month for her 4 month check-up.


Eating
I'm still a slave to that damn pump over here, pumping about five times a day.  Remy will take 5-6 ounces per feeding, every 3-4 hours during the day and about one bottle at night.  I'd say she gets about 30-35 ounces of milk a day which now that I type this seems like a hella lot.  Next month we will get to start some cereal so I'm hoping to push her feeding to a solid 4 hours between each to get on a more consistent schedule.  


Sleep
Now that I have decided to follow Remy's sleep cues, our life has been so much better.  During the day she will eat, play and then at about an hour and a half after eating, she will be ready for her nap.  Sometimes her naps are an hour and sometimes they will be over three - she doesn't have a consistent day schedule down yet.  However, she will get her last bottle for the day anywhere from between 7-9 and will go until about 2 for her next bottle.  She then sleeps until about 7ish and is ready for another one.  I'm pretty sure if I swaddled her back up at 7 she would sleep until noon if I let her, but unfortunately three days out of the week I have to take her brother to school so I can't do that.  She's like a mini teenager in an infant body.  Remy is still in the Rock and Play next to our bed and I haven't even tried the crib yet.  I probably need to try to get some naps in there but I'm getting sad because once she's out of the Rock and Play it means she is no longer an itty bitty baby.  So I'm kind of holding out for as long as I can...



Milestones
Our sweet girl is such a happy one these days.  She loves to smile, laugh and talk back to you when you give her the chance.  While she hasn't mastered rolling yet, her neck control is amazing.  I got out the Bumbo seat and she likes to sit in that for a bit and look around yet her head is still a bit wobbly after too long.  Remy has great hand-eye coordination and is starting to reach and grab for her hanging toys.  She also loves to grab on to my hair and her strength is comparable to a heavy weight body builder.




Likes
Girlfriend loves to be held but only if she can look out.  She's not much of a snuggler anymore which is super sad.  Remy also loves her siblings (still) and Cohen can really get her laughing.  She also thinks its hilarious when I take her clothes off which kills me.


Dislikes
You should hear the sounds this one makes when I am trying to put her to sleep.  She should win an award for sleep fighting - it is ridiculous!  Remy also dislikes being overly tired or hungry.  Tummy time is also not a favorite activity which is probably a big reason why she hasn't rolled over yet...


***

Miss Remy Elizabeth -
Another month has gone by in a flash!  You are becoming the sweetest and most personable little being on this planet and melting the hearts of everyone you come in contact with.  I love the way your face brightens up when someone talks to you and your smiley response is going to break hearts one day.  While I hope you become a Mama's Girl, I have a feeling you will be a Daddy's Girl by the way you have stolen his heart and soul.  You have made our family so happy and enriched our lives in so many amazing ways.  I can't wait to watch you grow more...even if it breaks my heart to watch my last baby get bigger before my eyes.


xoxo,
Mom

I Need a Quality Video Monitor that I Can Afford

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

I blame it on my husband because for real, I love my sleep.  But for some reason we have been cursed with two children who despise sleep.  Cohen never slept and my sweet Lola is polar opposite and asks to go to sleep.  Remy unfortunately has been a bit more difficult.  She reminds me an awful lot of her brother and I have vowed to not let her go down that path.  One night I started thinking (after an hour of a screaming baby who refused to sleep) what I did differently with Lola than I did with Cohen in the sleep department.  Immediately I remembered how I looked for her sleep cues and that's when I would swaddle her and lay her down right away.  So the next day I paid closer attention to Remy.  Sure enough, about an hour after her bottle, she started getting fussy and wanting to be held.  I decided to swaddle her up, rock her and then lay her down to sleep in the Rock and Play in our room.

The kid took a three hour nap.  I cried tears of joy.


I continued to follow her sleep cues and soon enough she has slowly adjusted to a better sleep schedule.  While it's not always perfect, it definitely is a huge improvement then what it was.  Plus she is such a happier baby which makes my life, and her siblings' life, so much better.  However, she is still currently sleeping in our room.  And I'm not quite sure when I will transition her to the crib.  (Most likely not until she's four or five and ready to go to Kindergarten...kidding...kind of.)  So whenever she is sleeping, I would have to try to open the door, pray to God it wouldn't squeak, tip-toe across the room and peek at her to see if she was sleeping.  It was too much stress my friends.

I needed a monitor in our room, but I didn't want to take the one out of her bedroom because I do plan on transitioning her there for a few naps during the day.  So I needed something portable and small that would fit nicely on my nightstand yet not take up the entire thing.  The Levana Ayden Video Baby Monitor was one of the first monitors that caught my eye.  It had a small camera and a unit with a small screen but one that I can still see even with my blindness when I'm not wearing my glasses.  The price was especially great at only $99.99 - and it has the option of buying extra cameras (up to 4!) so I can have one in each of the girls' rooms.


Some other features of the Ayden Video Monitor include:
--48 hour battery life when in PEEP mode
--temperature monitoring - which is one of my favorite features because our bedroom can get really warm at times!
--up to 15 feet of night vision
--750-foot ClearVu® digital signal which means creepers can not hack your baby monitor!
--baby intercom so I can talk to her from my unit
--three soothing lullabies that once again I can activate from my unit



I really am in love with this monitor and it has made Remy's sleep transition so much easier.  The parent unit is super portable so I can carry it around from room to room. I even set it right on the treadmill when I'm running during nap time.  I haven't set it in PEEP mode yet, but I will take it off the charger and my unit's battery will run all day long for me.  We will be doing some traveling this summer and I plan on taking it with us because it is so portable and easy to set up.  It will also be perfect to take in the backyard this summer while the kids play and she takes her morning nap.  The Levana Ayden Video Monitor has been a lifesaver when it comes to Remy's sleeping situation and I honestly couldn't be happier with my choice.  
Now let's see if we can get the kid to start sleeping through the night...

Buy It! 
Check out Levana's website to purchase your Ayden Video Monitor or to check out Levana's line of video baby monitors!






 
Disclosure:  I was provide a product for my honest review.  All opinions are 100% my own.

1/52

Friday, January 8, 2016

*A photograph of each of my children, once a week in 2016*


Cohen
The sweetest bedhead that I ever did see.  He says, "Mom, take a picture of me."  I can't say no to that one, right?



Lola
This is about as good of a smile as I'm going to get these days, unless I catch her laughing.  Cracks me up because she has been Serious Sally since birth - and 2 years later, she still is.



Remy
I'm thinking we have our blue eyed baby.  She also has more hair than her brother and sister combined at this age.  But the sweetness is too much to handle when she looks at you with those eyes and that gummy smile.


xoxo,

Once Again, Why I Don't Make Resolutions

Tuesday, January 5, 2016



And just like that it's 2016.  
Seriously, how is this so?
2015 was quite the year, bringing a mix of emotions and events.  But as I look back, I don't think I would have changed a thing.
Except for maybe keeping my eye on the things I wanted to add, discard and experience in the year.

So let's try this again.  It's a new year.  Let's put my eye on the prize and think of some things I can do to enrich my life, right?


Three Things I Want to Add to My Life:
1.  Me Time
This one sounds so simple but I think many moms can relate at attest to how it's just really hard to do.  Especially with Remy now, I don't take enough time for myself.  I want to start treating myself each month, maybe a pedicure or a night out with the girls or even a bath alone with a glass of wine - whatever it is, something for me.  Now that I'm home with the kids full time I need to get some adult interaction besides my husband or some time for a mental recollection to make sure I don't loose my marbles.  Otherwise I'm afraid I'm going to turn into the Crazy Old Mother Hubbard.

2.  Date Nights
God, I seriously say this every damn year but this year I mean it.  My husband and I haven't had a date since our anniversary in July.  Seriously, that's a problem.  I mean I guess the fact that we added another baby into the mix didn't really help but for real - I would like to schedule at least one night out for the two of us.  I mean I can't promise that I won't fall asleep sitting up at dinner or be ready for bed by 8 o'clock but that will make an easy night for the sitter I guess.

3.  Speaking Up More Often
While I have gotten a lot better about this, especially in my hormone induced bitch mode during pregnancy, I want to get back to standing on my own two feet.  I think in the last year some things have started a fire under my ass and I'm slowly gaining my voice back.  But this year I'll be back to my old roots but in a more mature and appropriate tone (a less Mean Girls Regina tone)  than my olden days.




Three Things I Want to Discard:
1.   Poor Eating Habits
Okay, so I had three kids.  And by the third one the weight just isn't falling off as quickly as the other two.  I'm sure it's because of my love for Cheetos and those damn Rise and Roll donuts (for those who are unfamiliar they are donuts made by the Amish and the girl will flipping deliver them to my house.  Big problem I know.  And my mouth is already watering just thinking about them.)  But for the last two weeks I've been recording what I've been eating as well as my workouts and I'm now just 5 lbs from my pre-pregnancy weight.  However, toning up is going to be my huge focus especially with bikini season inching closer by the second.  Three kids = no ab muscles at all.

2.  Negative Vibes
I know I said this last year as well, however I really need to kick this one out the door.  Last year I was labeled as "negative" and quite honestly it still pisses me off.  I'm not a negative person.  However I do believe in doing what is right and that unfortunately wasn't how others felt. Therefore it pinned a negative tone onto my attitude.  So this year I'm wiping the slate clean, starting fresh and breathing in positivity.  Positivity is my signature color friends...

3.  Staying Comfortable
Let me explain this one.  I think sometimes I am just comfortable with the way things are and I don't explore what is outside of my comfort zone.  This year I want to stop and take a leap into unfamiliar territory.  While the initial process is going to be a little scary, I want to take the chance at something new that will stretch me beyond what I am comfortable.



Three New Experiences for 2016
1.  Run Some New Races
This one I can legit try again because last year I got knocked up in January and therefore my running abilities were kicked to the curb.  I'm hoping to do a few 5Ks and 10Ks and maybe, just maybe try the Indy Mini again.  However, don't hold your breath quite yet for that one.

2.  Family Vacation
Last year we went to the beach (sigh) and this year, I'm not quite sure where we will go but I want to go on another vacation, probably in the summer.  You know, when my kid can at least sit up on her own.

3. A Weekend Get Away Without Kids
This is sad to say but the last time I spent the night away from my kids was when Cohen was 8 months old.  And it was for less than 24 hours.  This goes back to finding time for me as well as spending time with my husband - I need to do it.  So Nana and Papa get ready because I could use a weekend away to get dinner, drinks and watch movies in bed - and then sleep in until as late as I want.
 I just teared up at that thought.  

Okay 2016 - it's time you bring it.  Let's get this party started!

xoxo,
 

No More Karate Kid Thanks to Withings Home HD Camera

Monday, January 4, 2016

Meet Cohen.  Well, Cohen 4 years ago.  And by now I hope you all know this handsome fella.


Where to start?  I seriously love this kid but since the moment he was born he has given me a run for my money.  He never slept, ate like a horse and turned into Houdini the moment you would try to swaddle him up.  Oh, and he decided to roll over at two weeks old -- I'm serious, I have it on video.  So when we decided to move him to his crib it was a big step and it ended up working out for the best because he finally started to sleeping.  However, this was five years ago and video monitors were fairly new so no one really had them.  Therefore I had to turn on my ninja skills and peek in on him when he was sleeping basically holding my breath the entire time.  Any subtle movement would wake the kid up out of a dead sleep and therefore you were doomed.  Let's just say it was a menacing pain.

Fast forward three years later when Lola was born.  I refused to have to bust out those ninja moves again and I jumped on the video monitor bandwagon.  This kid, however, is not like the others.  She will ASK for sleep.  Seriously, can we say dream child?  But when we moved her to her crib she struggled a bit because Lola, unlike her brother, loved to be swaddled but I didn't want to swaddle her unless she was right next to me.  The video monitor was awesome as I could watch her and check on her at all hours of the night as well as during naps without turning into the Karate Kid.  It gave me a sense of reassurance when I laid her down to sleep.



Now that Remy is here I will need a monitor for her too.  We have recently started getting her used to her bed and considering her brother and sister sound like elephants when they are awake and playing, it's important that I keep her door shut to keep her room quiet so she can sleep.  Currently we are using the Withings Home HD camera that has the advanced baby monitor features on it.  The camera is small and sits nicely on her bookcase which is aimed right at her crib.  The best part about this camera monitor is that you stream stream live from your smartphone or tablet using the app.




Here are a few of my favorite features about the Withing Home HD Camera - Baby Monitor:
--Motion Alerts -- Whenever the camera detects motion within the room it will send an alert directly to my phone even if the screen is locked.

--Push-to-Talk feature -- With the press of a button I can talk to Remy while she is in her room without having to get up.  It has also been handy when my husband is upstairs changing her and I need him to bring down diapers, wipes or the laundry basket.

--Lulla Light and Music programs -- This is one of my favorite features!  I'm a huge fan of sound machines in all of my kids' rooms, so being able to have a monitor and sound in one is a huge plus!  I can control the level of the music from my phone as well as change the sound and length I want it to run.  The music is even paired up with lights on the bottom of the camera to an LED light sequence that is perfect for bedtime routines.

--HD Video and Wide Angle Lens -- No matter what time of the day, I am able to see my sweet girl in her room as well as zoom in and out because of the 135 degree wide angle lens.

--Air Quality Levels -  I can also monitor the air quality in Remy's room right through the app and I will be notified if there is any sign of dangerous levels of Volatile Organic Compounds.

My only frustration with this monitor is that if it loses signal with my wifi connection, I have had to hard reset the camera to get it to reload back onto my app and phone.  I only had this happen once when I unplugged the camera to move it to a different spot.  Once I plugged it back in I had to completely hard reset everything to get it up and running again.  However, I haven't had any other trouble since then - even when we recently changed internet providers.



I do love the convenience of being able to link the camera up to our phones and our iPad.  When we are able to finally get out for the night I will be able to leave the iPad set up for our sitter as well as take mini peeks in on sleeping Remy while we are out.  Plus, when we are past the baby monitor stage, I can use my Home camera in another area of our house for added security.

Thankfully technology has changed in the last five years since our first baby and I no longer have to practice my ninja moves as I stealthily open the door to check on my sleeping baby.  Thanks to Withings Home HD camera, I can check on her from the comfort of my own phone.


Buy It!
Right now Withings is offering an exclusive Home Baby Bundle on Amazon for $199.95 that includes the Home camera and two interchangeable covers in pink and blue.  You can also purchase your Home camera directly from Withings website.

xoxo,



Disclosure:  I received a product for review in exchange for an honest post.  All opinions are 100% my own.