Monday, December 30, 2013

You & Me, My Very Own Nursery!- A Review


      2013 was the year of the baby! We had our second child and with this we noticed our first daughter really start to nurture. She became more and more interested in her sister with each diaper change or bottle. When we noticed that she was using her sisters diapers for her stuffed animals we knew it was time to for a baby doll. We also noticed that she liked to have a fresh diaper each time her animals pooped and was secretly using her sisters pamper swaddlers.  Now letting her use 1 diaper over and over was no big deal but she wouldn't accept a "used" diaper, she wanted a fresh one.  We knew with Christmas coming it was a good time to request a doll that comes with her own diapers (a money saver for us) and possibly a nursery. 

Christmas morning came and our sweet girl received this from her aunt and cousins..


You and Me, My very own nursery- A Review



Best things about the nursery
All in one nursery makes a great space saver
Has high chair attached
Pretend sink includes little storage
perfect height for our two year old
Cute monkey mobile
Affordable
Come with a bottle, plate, sippy cup

Worst things about the nursery
ASSEMBLY
Once again, no words on the instruction sheet and this could have used it.
You need at least 2 hours for this.
All pieces came attached and you had to trim the plastic, I found that this left very rough edges.

Our daughter loves this and once it is together it is adorable. You can use more than one doll with this nursery. The doll of course comes separately and once we convince our little one to stop throwing her pretend diapers in the trash can we should be all set. When I was cleaning up last night I noticed 2 of her sisters pampers mixed in with the pretend doll diapers and it made me smile. She will catch on eventually, when I saw her feed her doll a bottle and then put her to sleep in her new nursery I knew it was the perfect gift!




Thursday, December 26, 2013

Step2 Lifestyle Deluxe Kitchen- A Review


        How can Christmas already be over? We prepared and shopped and crafted and baked and in a blink, it was gone. This was my husband and mine first year having to assemble toys. Our daughter is now 2 1/2 years old so it was really the first year that she was excited for what was under the wrapping paper. The only issue: as soon as she saw what was in the package she wanted it assembled that moment.  We were in a flurry of paper, bows and instructions.

You know what we found to be kind of difficult and annoying this year? There were no words with the instructions. NO WORDS. It was just pictures and I guess what the manufacturers felt was common sense. So, maybe this isn't a huge deal because we did get everything assembled but..no words. 

We put together a huge STEP 2 kitchen and the only word on those directions was. SNAP. I will say that Step 2 has it down, those directions didn't need words but everyone else could have used some helpful hints. My husband and I had hand cramps from all the assembly we did for two days.

I have to say, our favorite gift for our daughter was the STEP 2 Kitchen. It has working buttons for the oven, microwave and the fridge. The stove makes a boiling and/or sizzling noise and it included the dishes. 

The Step2 Lifestyle Deluxe Kitchen



Best things about the kitchen:
Plenty of cubby space
working stove top
buttons for each appliance
includes a phone
easy assembly
modern look that can match most homes
includes some dishes and food

Not so great things about the kitchen:
We were missing pieces
The microwave door was very hard to open

That was all, nothing else. We LOVED the kitchen and to be honest it is nicer than our kitchen at home. She loved it and on Christmas day we "boiled" plenty of snacks! I know this kitchen will grow with us and our 6 month old will be soon cooking with her sister.

We received some great gifts this year and I plan to review them all. Stay tuned and I hope everyone is getting some rest...Christmas was amazing but exhausting.

Friday, December 20, 2013

The tree nut! - A Guest post



        I have asked a few friends to guest host on my blog. With unique experiences I felt that they could offer support, comfort and maybe some advice (non-medical of course). My first guest host is a good friend. We met through work and as luck would have it we were pregnant together, not once but both times.  Lauren is such a great mom and has adorable, friendly and cuddly children. She is guest hosting to share her scary experience with her daughter Molly. It was only 2 months ago when Lauren discovered that Molly suddenly had an allergic reaction, not to the typical strawberry or peanut but to something a little harder to control. The tree nut! Tree nuts are used in everyday food processing and anyone who has a toddler knows that quick hands grabbing snacks can be hard to keep up with.       

                                            This is Lauren's story..

Well, we just found out my daughter, Molly, has an allergy to pecans of all things. 

She woke up one night with red swollen cheeks coughing and just screaming.  Severe teething?  Maybe but called doctor nonetheless.  As she was not blue around the mouth there was no need to go to urgent care.  However, the next day her face was so swollen her eyes were slits. 

We called our pediatrician, scheduled tests and avoided all nuts in the interim as I knew pecans were the only new food she had eaten. Found out that Yes she is allergic to pecans, but not peanuts (thank goodness!).

The pediatrician gave us an epi pen and the office staff warned us to stay away from all nuts. We were given a referral to an allergist but that's all of the info we were given.  

We left the doctor's office thinking that the allergy was just to pecans so it was really no biggie. Then I started reading on line because we weren't given much information at the pediatrician's office (usually they're very good, but I feel that they could have given us more info in this situation-we really only got vague advice to see a particular allergist and a prescription for an epi pen).  I saw that coughing during an allergic reaction is a sign of respiratory distress and anaphylaxis.  What!  This is very serious!  Terror set in. 

I called the allergist and there was a 2 month waiting list for new patients (we still haven't been).  I joined a nut free on line forum. I called all friends to tell them no nuts at play dates.  I found several other moms who's kids have nut allergies and spoke with them.  

Here's what the mental process was. First, I though no biggie. Then, my on line research had me terrified. Now I have accepted the situation and am managing it as best I can without having been to the allergist yet. 

I've been thinking about why its can be so frightening. I think it's because I love my little girl so so so much (as all moms do, I'm sure) and she trusts me to keep her safe.  I feel that if something were to happen it would be my failure as a mother and protector

As I stay at home with my kids, I do all of the grocery shopping, prepare every meal, and even order every pizza consumed by my family.  This is a double edge sward. I have complete control of everything she eats. On the other hand, I am 100% responsible for managing her allergy. It's a lot to bear at first.  

I want a little wacko for a bit but even without the info from the allergist it's becoming the new normal. I read labels anyway. Now I just check for any notation of tree nuts. Some mothers go as far as to call manufactures but I feel that unless she has another reaction what I'm doing is fine.  

Even with reading labels and nagging all of my friends and relatives I know eventually she'll have another reaction. We'll keep calm and administer her epi pen and go to urgent care as we should and go on with life. That's all we can do..,

Here is a picture of Sweet Molly- Thank you Lauren for sharing your story!



250 Titus 2 Tuesday

 

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

The Reindeer food bar and a Christmas party to remember!






          Two weekends ago I had my very first Christmas party. I invited my close friends and their children for a couple hours of fun. I am an avid reader of the blog Enjoying the Small things by Kelle Hampton and when I saw the adorable party she threw for her daughters I felt instantly inspired. I knew that this year I had to do something fun that would hopefully start a tradition. I planned and crafted til I could craft no more.

     My two older nieces agreed to be my helpers at the party to assist with the activities. They had adorable Santa hats and they did a wonderful job. We had beautiful table settings for our cookies and milk.





A write a letter to Santa station, I enjoyed reading some of the letters that the kids had written. One from niece was especially touching and made me realize that far before high school the pressure to fit in can be intense. I know my sister struggled with her daughters wish but I know that my niece is wonderful and smart and I hope her Christmas wish comes true.



We had a decorate your own stocking station that included glitter and glue. Let me tell you about glitter and girls. By the end of the party it looked like a glitter bomb went off in our rec center and the place will never be the same. I saw some of our more creative guests leaving the party with their hands, hair and pant legs covered in glitter. Glitter is magic and those who say otherwise are missing out.




The next was my very favorite, it was the thing that inspired my Christmas spirit this year.  It also inspired me to start making stuff in mason jars and this is my new obsession.

The Reindeer food bar

The Reindeer food bar was beautiful when I set it up and my little guests had such a fun time that the food bar looked disastrous at the end. A mess craft table is the sign of a good party. I also enjoyed that some of our smallest guests enjoyed snacking on the raisins meant for the Dasher. Here are the jars I created for the food. There are different snacks for each reindeer. You layer them in your jar and on Christmas Eve  you have the kids pour the food onto your driveway so the Reindeers can snack while Santa delivers your gifts!

The labels compliments of www.kellehampton.com gave this the extra sweet touch that it needed..


Filling up the jars to put out for Christmas eve..(note the spilled glitter)




I also wanted to do a photo booth for my guests. I love pictures and for me it is how I capture my memories. My husband calls me the mom-arazzi but I wear this title proud. I ordered cutouts from the fabulous Etsy store Lemon squeeze designs. They had a wonderful Christmas set that I purchased for $8.99 and I have to say..I had the kids asking to take the cut-outs home. Once the photo booth was warmed up there was no stopping the posing. I downloaded 100 pictures and I loved them all. I can't wait to look back next year and see how everyone has changed. Here is my favorite pose from the party, my sweet girls! 


I wanted to do something for all my wonderful friends. For the love the patience the advice and the constant friendship that keeps me going and gives me such joy. So for my friends I made home-made peppermint sugar scrubs.


Please note, this came in a mason jar. I LOVE MASON JARS!

I stumbled upon www.lollyjane.com, not only do I LOVE LOVE this website but I have gotten quite a few compliments on the Sugar scrub. It was easy and they came out really nice. So far I know it works well on your dry feet and hands from the winter. Thank you to Lollyjane for also including the free printable.

I loved the party, I missed my friends and each year Christmas becomes more special. Having children gives more meaning to the Holidays. Only last year, I was pregnant with our second and last child. Imagining what it would be like to have two kids at Christmas. Now, in the blink of an eye it has been a year and my wished for baby is now 6 months old. I have my two girls this year and for everything we have been through I am feeling extra love and hope.

I believe in the magic of Christmas, the love of your friends and that if you make a jar of Reindeer food to pour on your driveway Christmas Eve that Santa will come... This year I wished for my friends to be together and my family to be healthy. I wanted to do the party to start a new tradition, to show my girls that celebrating with your friends is important and that it only takes a little glitter to create a memory!


(Please notice my new look from www.jumpingjaxdesigns.com. I couldn't be more pleased. My social media will be up and running soon and hopefully will bring more readers, more ideas and more fun)

Saturday, December 14, 2013

Aveeno, I hope you can help

                          Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it.
                                                 -Confucius
Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it.
Read more at http://www.notable-quotes.com/b/beauty_quotes.html#LozDl7okhPPvqFh5.99
Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it.
Read more at http://www.notable-quotes.com/b/beauty_quotes.html#LozDl7okhPPvqFh5.99
Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it.
Read more at http://www.notable-quotes.com/b/beauty_quotes.html#LozDl7okhPPvqFh5.99
Everything has its beauty, but not everyone sees it.
Read more at http://www.notable-quotes.com/b/beauty_quotes.html#LozDl7okhPPvqFh5.99


    Well due to my multiple posts regarding my feeling older lately, I have decided to take some action.  While I am not one who overly pays attention to commercials. Partly because we have DVR and there for we hardly watch live television. Lately, I have been seeing the Aveeno daily moisturizing commercial that Jennifer Aniston is in and I have decided to try the lotion. I have had such a hard time with the way my face looks lately, just worn and dry and with a lot more lines. There has to be something to the billions of dollars people spend on trying to look younger. I don't have billions so I am going to try something in my price range. Since I have been complaining so much I have gone to extra lengths at night to really wash all my make up off using an Oil of Olay makeup swipe. This removes my make up and has vitamin E so my face doesn't feel dry. 

Tomorrow, I am going to purchase me some Aveeno daily mosturizing and give it a try for 30 days. I am just hoping my skin will look a little less drab and a little more like the glow you get from pregnancy. I have committed to myself that if it doesn't work then I will move on to the Aveeno anti-aging and firming line. I am going to track any changes and see what works. I keep telling myself that I am only 35 but really I should be saying. I am 35, its time to take better care of my skin.  Yes, Jennifer Aniston is naturally beautiful and has a team of people that make her look so fantastic but I am betting that underneath that extra effort she takes pretty good care of her skin.

AVEENO® Daily Moisturizing Lotion Challenge accepted Ms. Aniston, lets see if the product you are hocking on television really has what it takes to rejuvenate this overtired, overworked and over worried mommy!

Stay tuned, not only is my new blog look almost ready for the  unveiling from Jumpingjaxdesigns but I am trying out 5 new Skinnytaste recipes this week and plan to share them when finished. On the menu, dijon/herb pork chops, sweet barbacoa beef and some Italian sloppy Joes all SKINNY!

Stephanie

Friday, December 6, 2013

And the winner is...

                 Congratulations to Crystal G-                                   Winner of the Tutu Giveaway!

Thank you for everyone who participated in My very first giveaway! I hope to work with many other talented individuals for giveaways. Thank you as well to Dress up Designs for offering up her wonderful tutu's.


Happily Ever Rushed is currently working with Jumping Jax Designs for a fresh look. I am very excited to be working with Jumping Jax Designs and can't wait to debut our fresh new face! 

Anyone out there that is looking for blogger help should check out JumpingJaxdesigns at

www.jumpingjaxdesigns.com 

I know that when I started in the blogger world, I immediately overwhelmed with how much there is to learn and when I had trouble with blogger there was no help by the actual Blogger team. This is when I found www.theblogmaven.com and she was kind enough to send me over to Becca at Jumping Jax. This is why I was so excited to join the community of bloggers. I needed help and I was contacted quickly and given a fantastic resource. Thank you to both Jeni at The Blog Maven, Stephanie at www.sixsistersstuff.com and to Becca at Jumping Jax. I have only just begun and already am so impressed by the outreach and kindness.

Stay tuned if you are a reader and thank you for reading so far...