Thursday, August 28, 2014

I Actually Learned Something in College

For the most part, everything I was taught in college is pretty useless in my chosen career as a stay at home mom. I have a degree in marketing, which means I know a little bit about the "Four Ps," (product, place, price, promotion). Basically, nothing that is really helpful in the home setting. I did have one class though, Consumer Marketing, that has basically changed the way I shop.

I think everyone knows that buying in bulk is usually cheaper. It doesn't always have to be in massive quantities either. For example, at the commissary the other day, I was in the mac & cheese aisle. The lady in front of me picked up three boxes at $1.25 each. Sitting right next to it, was a four-pack of the same exact product for $3.79. So, pretty much a free box. I cringed, grabbed my four-pack (these kids eat mac & cheese like it's their job), and kept on walking.

I've become the crazy person that stands there comparing each product's price per ounce. When I used to do my shopping at Walmart, it meant that usually, I would end up with the store brand product. Never really an issue for me, since I don't have a brand loyalty for most products. Plus, a majority of the time, the store brand and the name brand item are the same exact thing in different packaging. Now though, I feel like a grandma, because I stand there and compare every. single. product.

During class one day, the professor told us that he always checked out what other shoppers had in their carts, to see if they were doing decent job saving money and buying the best deal. At the time, I thought he was a total creep. Seriously, who the hell does that?! Five years later, I do the same exact thing.

Anyone else crazy when it comes to grocery shopping or is it just me?

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Balls & Dresses

Since Juliana will still be so little, I wasn't planning on attending the Military Police Ball this year. Anyone that I would trust to watch her is going to be at the event, so I figured I would just stay home. John always goes, but I don't really mind missing out. In my opinion, balls can be rather boring at times anyway. Plus, I've sent him alone in the past, and he survived. 

Even though we had already decided that I was going to skip this ball, John called yesterday afternoon to see if I'd consider going. His NCOIC would rather not attend, so she volunteered to watch the girls if I'd take her place. Sure, why not.. We hadn't even hung up yet and I was already searching for dresses on

Back at Fort Stewart a few of my Army wife friends recommended Lightinthebox for dresses and since then, it's the only place I buy formal gowns from. Their prices are beyond reasonable, you get to choose the exact style/color/size that you want, and the quality  is fantastic. I'd much rather pay $80 and get to keep my dress, versus only getting to wear it once and having to send it back. Just sayin...

Because I have no idea if shipping to Hawaii is just as quick as shipping to the mainland (the dresses are made to order from China), I want to hurry up and order. If I order today, I'll have exactly one month to receive my dress. I'm leaning towards the middle dress, probably in yellow, since it would coordinate well with John's Army dress uniform.

Three out of my four friends on the island will be attending this ball, so I'm kinda looking forward to going. Thanks to a great group of friends, I had a blast at the last ball we attended at Fort Leonard Wood. Lucky for us, some of those same friends will be at this ball too. Woot!

Monday, August 25, 2014

Clean Freak

One of my mom's habits that has really stuck with me after she left last week, is the necessity to have a clean kitchen. While my parents were visiting, my mom ensured that the kitchen remained as clean as possible. This meant no dishes in the sink and counters wiped down and free of clutter. Since our kitchen is the center of our home, it makes a huge difference in the appearance of the entire house. 

I've never been one to do dishes after a meal. Usually, they sit in the sink all day until I load the dish washer the following morning. Lately, I've been doing the dishes right away, and as weird as it may sound, I like it.

The clean kitchen obsession has branched off into other rooms of the house, and has me wanting to develop a schedule for the entire house. I figure if I can clean for like an hour each day, I should never really have to do more than just a little touching up here and there. Right now, I know what I want to do, but fitting each task into a day is proving to be slightly challenging. For example:

Should I clean the bathrooms on Fridays in case we have guests over on the weekends?
Laundry on Saturdays so that I can include the uniform that John wore all week?
Vacuum while the girls are in school so that they don't track dirt in and out of the house while playing?

Once I get that puzzle figured out, I think I'll be able to maintain a tidy house pretty easily.

While we're on the topic of cleaning, I want to give you all a warning about a huge Pinterest fail that happened to me last week. Maybe you've seen a pin about boiling a cup of water + vinegar in your microwave in order to clean your microwave with the steam. Well, when I  opened up the microwave to wipe it down, the boiling hot water in the measuring cup exploded out everywhere, to include my chest. Luckily, I wasn't holding Juliana at the time, but boy was it scary. And painful! I still have a few red marks on my skin, but I'm just glad that it didn't blister or anything. On the bright side, my microwave is squeaky clean!

Is there a specific cleaning routine that works for you?

Friday, August 22, 2014

Starting Our Vegetable Garden

I am happy to say that my first day of solo-parenting all three girls wasn't nearly as bad as I was anticipating. Other than several interruptions while the doctor and I were speaking, Juliana's appointment went well. Gymnastics was good, except for the fact that it was close to 300 degrees in the gym and poor Juli heats up so easily.

While at home, the littlest one slept the majority of the time. I used that time to take care of some minor chores. Once the big girls started getting restless, I decided it was finally time to get our little vegetable garden started. While my dad was here, we started some tomato plants which inspired me to plant even more vegetables.

Over the weekend, I bought most of the items needed to get our garden started. I picked up a big  raised garden box, along with five packets of seeds and little pots to get them started in. We already had enough dirt for this little project.

Yesterday, I let each girl choose two packets of seeds to get started. They were responsible for filling their pots with dirt, planting the seeds, and watering their pots. Afterwards, we went inside and drew pictures of what we had planted.

Today, my plan is to spend some time outside checking out our new seedlings along with the tomato plants and some sunflowers that the girls planted a few weeks back. I have a few printables courtesy of Pinterest that they'll be able to color and do a few matching activities with.

My goal now is to do more these little projects where we can incorporate learning opportunities. I'll probably check out the lesson plan for V's class and steal some of the activities that they work on on the days that she doesn't attend. I'm actually pleasantly surprised with how much she's learned in the past few weeks of school. I'm hoping that Adri picks up on some of it from our at home learning and who knows, with Juli sitting close by, maybe she'll be a baby genius too.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Day 1 of the Rest of My Life

Say a prayer for me, people. Today will be my very first day home alone with all three girls. John has been back to work for a while now and my parents' month-long vacation to Hawaii ended early this morning. It would be an understatement to say that I am nervous/anxious. Especially since we have a few things to do today outside of the house. 

The parentals did a fantastic job of keeping the house pretty clean, all while entertaining Veronica and Adri. Call me crazy, but I'm going to attempt to do the same myself. For the past week or so, I've been jotting down ideas for a cleaning schedule as well as for the daily routine for the girls. I've printed out a bazillion calendars and lists to assist with that and mainly just keeping day to day life organized. 

I've got a few projects to tackle in the house and yard that I'm looking forward to. Vegetable garden anyone? It'll all be a matter of balance. And a little bit of getting Juli on a schedule. That trip to the hospital this weekend really screwed up what we were beginning to establish. Now with life completely back to our new normal, hopefully we can get something that sticks for all of us. 

We're starting the day off with a follow up doctors appointment for Juli, and then gymnastics in the afternoon. My biggest worry is that it'll be a total shit-show, which will more than likely prevent me from becoming motivated to do anything more than the absolute necessary in the future. I just need the day to go smoothly as proof that a sane life with three kids is possible. 

Let's hope that I've timed leaving the house with three correctly. 

If you have a favorite printable for life management, I'd love to check it out, pleeeease!

Monday, August 18, 2014

One Month

My tiniest munchkin is a whole month old today! When I weighed her yesterday, she was exactly nine pounds. I swear, time has flown by, but not without a few obstacles. I'm sure most of you already know that we spent the weekend in the hospital with Juliana. 

During one of her early morning diaper changes on Saturday, I noticed that she seemed extra warm, so we took her temperature. She was at 100.8. When we left the hospital after her birth, we were told that we would need to come in if her temp was ever above 100.4. So off to the hospital we went. 

I was honestly thinking it would be a quick visit and they'd send us off with some Tylenol. Nope. Since she was just shy of being a month old, it pretty much meant an automatic 48 hour stay. They started off with a urine sample, blood sample, spinal tap, and chest X-ray. Luckily, everything was normal, other than the X-ray showing what could be a virus. Since the test results all appear to be negative, we should be headed home this morning to battle a virus with some Tylenol. 

Since we were cooped up all weekend, I never got around to taking some cute one month photos. Maybe if I have the energy today, I'll get around to taking some. I foresee lots of nap time though. Those hospital bed/chairs aren't exactly the comfiest. 

I do have some random iPhone/iPad photos though.. 

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Oh, Hey There..

Hi! Remember me?! It's been a while.. I've been having the hardest time actually finding time to blog lately. Juggling three kids has proven to be quite the challenge. Once I find my balance though, I should be good to go.

So.. Yesterday was Hubster's birthday. For the most part, it was like any other day. He worked. I woke up, got Veronica and Adri ready for school, then spent the rest of the day with Juli. To celebrate, we went to dinner at what has become one of our favorite restaurants, Monkeypod Kitchen.

As you can see, Juli came along for the fun. For someone who spends the majority of their day crying, she behaved rather well at the restaurant. I did have to pop her on the boob a couple of times, but can you blame her for wanting to eat at this yummy restaurant too..?!

You may remember that finding a favorite local restaurant was on my Hawaiian bucket list. I think it's safe to say that we can scratch that off of the list. Several other items have been accomplished from my list, so it may be time to do a bit of a recap/update post.

Last night I chose a winner for the Dr. Brown's giveaway with the help of The winner has been notified.

Thanks for sticking around, friends! I have a feeling that once my parents head back home next week, I might have an easier time updating this blog thing. 

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Dr. Brown's Gia Pillow [Review + Giveaway]

I received this product complimentary for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

As the mommy of a newborn, it's pretty fantastic knowing that 100% of her nourishment comes from me, in the form of breastfeeding. Although breastfeeding may come with it's set of challenges, it's rewarding knowing that I'm providing the absolute best for my little one.

For World Breastfeeding Week 2014, I was given the opportunity to try out some Dr. Brown's breastfeeding products. In case you didn't know (I didn't), Dr. Brown has a whole lot more to offer than just those nifty bottles with the straw in them.

My very favorite breastfeeding accessory has quickly become the Gia nursing pillow. After using the Gia once, my old nursing pillow got tossed into a closet. The Gia was designed by a lactation consultant with the needs of nursing moms and babies in mind. The size and thickness are perfect to help support Juliana as she nurses without her rolling down, without the need for additional pillows. This comes in extra handy for the occasional night feeding where I'm just barely hanging on to consciousness. Since the pillow isn't flat, I am able to use the thicker portion to support her now while she's tiny, and in the future use the smaller thinner portion of the pillow when she's a bit larger. She's kept at the perfect angle to help avoid reflux and similar issues.

Along with being an ultra friendly to use nursing pillow, the Gia is easy to clean. You know, when that rare spit-up occurs. The entire pillow can be tossed into the washing machine, without you having to worry about the shape becoming distorted. Gia nursing pillow covers are machine wash and dry friendly too and are also easy to slip on and off for a quick clean.

If you're in the market for a nursing pillow, I would highly recommend you giving the Gia a try!

The Dr. Brown's breastfeeding accessories that I received included:
  • Disposable and washable breast pads. Skip yourself the embarrassment of a milk soaked shirt and use the pads. They easily slip into your bra to keep your top protected. 
  • Milk storage bags. The double zipper seals your milk in nice and tight to prevent leaks in the refrigerator or freezer.
  • Breast shells to keep sore nipples from rubbing up against clothing. This one was a must for the first few weeks of nursing for me. 
  • Nipple shields, which help with latch issues.
  • Nipple cream to help soothe sore breasts.
Fellow mommas (or mommas to be), here's your opportunity to win yourself a set of these products as well. Comment below and let me know which Gia pillow cover is your favorite.Winner will be chosen August 12, 2014 and will have 24 hours to respond to my email.

Contest is open to US & Canada (except Quebec) residents. Contest sponsor is responsible for sending prize to winner. Winner will have 24 hours to respond to winning email, or a new winner will be chosen.

Monday, August 4, 2014


So, it's been two and a half-ish weeks since my Jules was born and I'm pretty much fitting back into my pre-pregnancy clothes. Well, at least the stuff that was slightly loose on me before Juliana. I'm not cleared to exercise yet, which means that up until this point, it's been lots of breastfeeding and drinking lots of water that have helped me shed the extra pounds. Although I'm making fantastic progress so far, there are a handful of changes that I'd like to make in order to actually get healthy and possibly fit back into some pre-Veronica jeans that I have hiding in my closet. 

I've been drinking extra water in an effort to stay hydrated and avoid issues with producing milk for the baby. Throughout my pregnancy, I used the excuse of being pregnant to drink soda. Before that, it had been probably four or five years since I had even purchased the stuff for the house. If I don't buy it, I can't drink it, right? I'm back to my no soda rule. Sure, I'll buy it if we're having people over or occasionally if I'm thirsty at the Target checkout lane, but no more 12-packs in the cart every time I make a trip to the grocery store. 

I've slacked in the meal planning department lately. I've just been having such a hard time deciding on a week of dinner ideas that everyone enjoys, while not having the same exact thing week after week. I'm going to have to force the husband to help with ideas other than the typical "food," that I usually get from him. We should probably add salads back to our meals. Filling up on the leafy stuff helped us avoid overeating. I'm loving my spinach smoothies that I've gone back to making every morning. 

One major change that is going to give me some peace of mind, is finally creating a solid daily routine. I'd like to carve time out to focus on fitness. We have a small gym in our community center that I can use to finally get rid of the little pooch that I've had since having Adri. I've even considered joining a Stroller Strides program.

Getting the girls on a good schedule should hopefully make life as a mom of three a tad easier. My plan is to loosely follow the schedule that they're already following in preschool. If I can get everyone to nap at the same time, we'll be golden!

Oh. And speaking of preschool, my Adri starts tomorrow for the first time! With my big girls gone all day, and my tiniest one napping for a good amount of time, I'd like to actually post thought out blogs instead of the recent randomness coming from my iPad as I lay in bed. 

Friday, August 1, 2014

That Awkward Moment When...

...your husband's fraternity brother posts the flier for a "rager" on Facebook and the address is at your parents' house...

...who happen to be visiting Hawaii...

My brother is an asshole.