My Baby Food Maker

If you are planning to make your own baby food, or in the midst of doing so, I found a great tool to make this process easier. It also creates VERY happy babies.

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It is called the Babycook by Beaba, and I am in love with it. There are not many steps in making baby food, nor does it take time away from playing with your little one(s).

  • Dice vegetables/fruit
  • Add correct amount of water to the mixing area, according to the booklet (included)
  • Add the diced food to the steaming basket, top with mixing lid, and seal shut
  • Add water to the reservoir
  • Turn the knob to the “steam” icon.
  • Once steaming is complete, remove water (but save some to add when pureeing the food), and take food out of the steaming basket
  • Add steamed food direct to the mixing area, add some of the steamed water back into the mixing area. Adding water will be up to your discretion and how thick you want your food.
  • Puree

Then volia! Your baby’s meal is complete! In three hours, I completed four different vegetables, and several jars of food. Granted, I didn’t stay in the kitchen the entire time. I would get the food started, let it steam, then go spend time with my family until I went in the kitchen to check on things.

I love that your time isn’t spent in the kitchen making food, and Baby P gets fresh veggies and fruit from our local farmers market.

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I highly recommend adding this sweet cooking machine to your next baby registry, buying it for your friends, or getting one for those sweet babies of your own.

I have the older edition, the Babycook Original, but you can see all the editions, and links to purchase them, here:

Babycook Original

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84141946461131p.jpgBabycook Plus

FYI- this is not a paid ad. This was recommended to me by my cousin who made baby food, with ease, for all three of her children. She is the original Beaba user.

Happy {baby food} eating!

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LUSHious Skin

I am a lover of LUSH bath bombs, but I wanted to explore more of their products. I recently tested some LUSH skin products with my cousin, and I wanted to share my experience with you all.

Gentlemen: this is a GREAT Mother’s Day gift idea! What wouldn’t want an in-home spa any time she wants?

We tried Ocean Salt face and body scrub, Mask of Magnaminty face and body mask, Cup O’ Coffee face and body mask, and Vanishing Cream facial moisturizer.

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LUSH instructions for masks: Smooth mask all over your skin. Leave on for 15 minutes then rinse off with warm water, massaging as you go.

Below you will find links for the products through LUSH’s website, but I also provided links to purchase these products through Amazon as another option.

My cousin really needed something to clear up blemishes, and I wanted something to get rid of my new “tired mom” look. So we tested these products as a team since we had different goals for our skin.

My favorite, by far, was the Cup O’ Coffee mask.

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It smells like iced coffee and feels so refreshing once applied on my face. But the best part is washing it off. My skin felt softer than ever and so clean. I am not sure if I looked less tired, but I definitely felt more awake after my mask treatment. I highly recommend using this mask when you want to feel refreshed and recharged.

Purchase Cup O’ Coffee mask through Amazon HERE

With my cousin, she experimented with the Mask of Magnaminty mask and Vanishing Cream moisturizer combo.

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She felt the mask helped minimize her pores and reduced blemishes. It is a green cream and has a fresh minty scent. Once she washed her face, she applied the vanishing cream to ensure those blemishes don’t come back for a while. She was very pleased with the experience and liked the results.

Purchase Mask of Magnaminty through Amazon HERE

Purchase Vanishing Cream moisturizer through Amazon HERE

For the Ocean Salt scrub, it is one of their most popular products. Unfortunately, I am not a big fan. The infused vodka is definitely noticeable. The vodka scent really drew me away from using it. However, my cousin enjoyed using it as a body scrub. She loved the fresh feeling it left her with after her shower.

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Purchase Ocean Salt scrub through Amazon HERE

I would love to hear from you on your favorite scrubs or masks. I’m always willing to try something new!

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Hello Baby, Goodbye Dairy!

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Hello Readers!

I hope you are all doing well! I apologize for my absence in posting. Going back to work while being a new mom is tough work! But now we have a routine in place, and life is slowly going back to (our new and improved) normal. This includes being able to blog again with you!

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Since I last posted, there have been a few changes in our home. One of them being a new dairy-free diet! About two weeks after coming home from the hospital, we noticed our son spitting up all the time and having tremendous stomach pain. After trying multiple things, our pediatrician finally recommended going on a dairy-free/soy-free diet. It was crazy how this nutritional adjustment affected my son! He instantly improved, with less spit up and very little stomach issues. Unfortunately, that meant queso, Blue Bell, and I had to take some time away from each other.

I am now on my fifth month of this diet, and my whole family is adjusting. I am making meals with healthier substitutions, and getting adapted to allergen charts at restaurants. It is much more challenging than you think when it comes to finding food that is dairy and soy free. However, I am thankful for the world we live in today because there are many more options available than there were when I was a baby.

For any moms out there facing this same diet, know that you are not alone! There are Facebook groups for dairy-free breastfeeding moms, and several recipes online. Here are two of favorites for my sweet tooth, or when I’m craving fried food:

Cinnamon Oat Bars (great for boosting milk production too!)

Baked Chicken Strips

I would love to hear from you on your favorite dairy-free/soy-free recipes or food! I am always up for new ideas!

 

Matching PJs

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I’m not sure why, but I really thought it would be fun to match my son while in the hospital. Not only was it fun (for me), I ended up finding some of the most soft and comfortable pajamas!

As I mentioned in my previous post, Packing for the Hospital, I found some great pajamas so I didn’t have to wear a gown my entire visit. While searching for nursing-friendly pajamas, I came across matching sets for mom and baby. I then fell in love! We both wear these PJs all the time around the house. It’s great to wear when visiting family too!

 

I also love wearing these Medela camis that were recommended to me by a dear friend.

You can find the matching beanie with Baby P’s name here at Etsy.

 

 

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img_3606Similar PJs: Due Maternity | Favorite Nursing Cami: Medela | Baby’s Beanie: Etsy

 

 

I hope you and your baby are comfy during your stay!

Packing for the Hospital

 

Before Baby P arrived, one challenging experience was packing for the hospital for the first time. I didn’t want to look like we were moving in, but I didn’t want to forget anything important. After much research, and surveying experienced moms, I packed accordingly.

I did pack for a vaginal birth, but I did end up having a c-section. Everything I list below is for my stay after the c-section.

When we finished, we packed all of our items in one carry-on wheeled bag and one half-full backpack:

 

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Mom’s Items:

  • Two pajama sets: I made sure both had nursing-friendly tops. Here are links for my two pajamas: Eve Alexander | Due Maternity
  • Slippers for the hospital: UGG
  • Shower shoes
  • A comfy robe: Ralph Lauren
  • A going home dress: I highly recommend a dress heading home. I definitely didn’t want to mess with pants this early postpartum. Also make sure you have a nursing-friendly under garment to wear. Old Navy | Tory Burch | Medela
  • Extra long phone charger: The 10ft charger came in handy. My phone could charge and still reach my bed. Just Wireless

I also had a small toiletries bag:

  • Small mirror: This came in very handy when putting in my contacts and throwing on makeup. Amazon
  • Makeup bag: I included tinted moisturizer, blush, eyeliner, and mascara. It really felt good to put some make up on when heading home. It made me feel/look like me after spending so much time in the hospital.
  • Face-cleansing wipes: This came in handy when I stayed in bed and still wanted to feel fresh. Neutrogena
  • Extra contacts, contact case, and glasses
  • Face wash
  • Dry Shampoo Not Your Mother’s
  • Actual shampoo and conditioner
  • Hairbrush
  • Lotion
  • Toothbrush and toothpaste
  • Hair ties
  • Cute hair bands

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Dad’s Items:

  • Different pants: He brought comfy shorts, sweatpants, khaki shorts, and jeans. He wanted to be prepared for any type of weather. This ended up being good because I kept the room VERY cold! Nike | Hurley | Dockers
  • Slippers: UGG
  • Different tops: A long-sleeve tee, a short-sleeve tee, and a nicer polo shirt for coming home. Under Armour | Under Armour | Puma
  • A last-minute sweatshirt: This came in very handy. I don’t think he ever took it off.

The Backpack (filled with Baby P’s items):

  • Three sets of newborn clothes: This included an outfit with matching beanie and socks.
  • Mittens for hands
  • Three swaddle blankets
  • Two burp cloths
  • Our nice camera for snapping all our visitors

In the Car:

We left some items in the car in case we needed them. Fortunately, we were glad we did! We didn’t bring these things with us initially, but Super Dad went and got them as needed:

  • A blanket for Dad’s bed: This is a must! The hospital provided sheets for Dad’s bed, but with the room being so cold, he needed more coverage!
  • Two pillows for Mom and Dad: It was nice having our own pillows, especially after staying at the hospital so long.
  • Baby P’s carrier: We didn’t need this until we left the hospital, so we left it in the car. Britax
  • An extra bag: We actually didn’t end up using this extra bag because everything fit in the backpack. We took all of the items the hospital provided us – I mean we already paid for it! This included the leftover diapers and wipes, the suction bulb, and more. If you don’t have any room left in your bags, I recommend keeping a spare bag in the car to pack when leaving the hospital.

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I hope these lists help any future first-time moms when packing, and I wish you all the most wonderful experience with your labor and delivery!

Christmas Cookie Tradition

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Something fun my little family does each year is bake and decorate sugar cookies. We listen to Christmas music, eat too much dough, and we have a blast. We are definitely not artists, but it’s a fun and yummy tradition!

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Sugar Cookies

  • 1 ½ cup of powdered sugar
  • 1 egg
  • ½ teaspoon of almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon of cream of tartar
  • 1 cup of margarine
  • 1 teaspoon of vanilla
  • 2 ½ cup of flour

Cream sugar and margarine; mix in eggs and flavorings. Stir in dry ingredients. Refrigerate 2-3 hours. Divide and roll out on a lightly floured surface. Cut and bake at 375 degrees for 7-8 minutes.

Frost with icing: one part powdered sugar and one part milk. Mix in food coloring. Stir.

Wishing y’all a Merry Christmas!

Fun Holiday Game

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On Christmas Eve every year, my family plays this great game while we wait to get ready for the candlelight service at our church. It’s called the 12 Days of Christmas, and I want to share it with you!

In preparation for the game, everyone playing brings some gifts. They could be funny gifts, really good gifts, gifts from the dollar bin at Target, a Starbucks gift card….well you get the picture! This year, I am bringing some Bath and Body Works items, some funny head/hat lamps, some board games, some really good tools, and some funny things I found at the dollar bin. You then wrap up the gifts, so you can’t tell what it is without unwrapping. I like to wrap some very fancy, and some I just put in a gift bag and tape closed. This makes it a mind game on what kind of gift is inside.

When it comes time to play, everyone gathers together in a circle and puts the gifts they brought in the middle.

To play the game, someone will need to tear pieces of paper and write a word from the “12 Days of Christmas” song. You will need a piece of paper for each person playing. We like to put words on the paper that are from the 5th day of Christmas or less. For example, we typically write the following words on our pieces of paper:

Christmas

Day

Love

Tree

Turtle

French

Four

Golden

On

Partridge

Hens

Birds

Rings

By using these words, the game starts faster and there are more opportunities for everyone to grab a gift.

Once you wrote on the paper, you will put all of the pieces in a bowl and have everyone playing draw a word.

-THE GAME WILL NOW BEGIN-

Then pull up the “12 Days of Christmas” song, and have someone sing (or in our case read) the song.

When the player’s word on their paper is said in the song, they go pick a gift from the middle of the circle. The song cannot stop, so there is no time to sit and pick each gift. Only one gift may be picked at a time. They also DO NOT open the gift until the song is over.

Once the gifts are gone in the middle of the circle, players must then steal a gift from other players.

The stealing keeps going until the song is completely over. Once the song is over, the players open all of the gifts they have. There are some laughs when opening, and of course trading when everything is said and done.

Our family always has a blast, and we have several memories from the game each year. Maybe this can be a new tradition with you and your loved ones! Have fun!