Friday, November 23, 2012

I Fell Victim...

I have always sworn off The Black Friday Madness! I have never felt the deals were good enough to stay up all night, wake up early, stand forever, or fight the crowds. However this year as a mother almost 3 (we're expecting a third next year), having guardianship of my nephew, and budgeting with ONE income I felt I should give it a try.... 

Instead of saving money I got a headache, lack or rest, and blew the budget. I bought items I know my boys don't need, but because it was a "bargain". I now feel remorseful, and somewhat unholy... if that makes sense. It's like every year I'm trying more and more to hold onto the meaning of Christmas. I do realize my boys are small, and I don't want to take away from them the excitement of Christmas morning.

So with that said I am adopting a gift giving philosophy (and making returns MONDAY!). Our Gift Giving Philosophy is based on something I heard last weekend from this amazing woman I had the best conversation with and it goes like this:
  • something they WANT
  • something they NEED
  • something to WEAR
  • something to READ 
I hope you all find a gift giving philosophy that works for you, and I hope you enjoy the holiday season, creating memories with the ones who melt your heart.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Everyday Moments

As my life continues to change and we develop a more simple approach as opposed to tackling what used to be chaos, my boys and I have redeveloped a love outdoors. We always enjoyed our time playing in the yard or the occasional hike, however we have most recently made it an effort to simply play outside. 

Earlier this week went on a hike to a local castle, thrilled that I had dressed them extra nice (we visited daddy at work for lunch), and camera in tow I figured I'd attempt to get a few holiday poses.




I didn't get the best images, but I must admit my photography class, and membership to clickin moms is definitely paying off!! I have also found a wonderful way to get insirpation from other moms lookin to enjoy the simply memories of their children by following along with a blog circle. The way it works is we all link another mom, and meet back full circle.

Please check out some of the amazing lives, and work of these women; click here to join the circle!!

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Fall Funtime Ideas- Painting Pumpkins

One of my favorite activities to do with my boys is painting! Fingerpaint, pudding paint, traditional (using a brush that is), you think of it we paint it or with it. Last summer we painted with Blueberries!

Painting is art, art instills so much in young little minds. It helps with building confidence, gets their little brains ticking with creative thoughts, imagining some of the most elaborate scenes you would never think your toddlers could come up with. My 2 1/2 year old told me while painting his pumpkin he was making legs so it could pick up the princess; we had recently watched Cinderella and the carriage is actually a pumpkin.







Painting is also easier for smaller toddlers as opposed to coloring with markers or crayons (I would like to mention ALWAYS keep an eye on your babies when doing any type of arts and crafts)



And remember when they are finished with their art 
PRAISE PRAISE PRAISE!!

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Liv Well Toys.... Play well!

Now that my baby has hit the I'm-not-a-baby-BUT-I'm-not-a-toddler stage I have found myself searching for age appropriate toys. At his age a lot of his toys are diverse, yet he is still interested in playing with the plush toys he already has but it doesn't seem to hold his interest for long. What he loves most are toys with bright colors and patterns.

After much searching I stumbled upon liv.well.toys. Liv.Well Toys. has affordable, earth-friendly cloth toys for children. Their toys are designed to stimulate children's development and imagination. After reading more about this mommy who makes her toys by hand of course I had to support her! And boy am I happy I did! Liam loves loves loves his plush blocks! Even AJ (my almost 3 year old) has found pleasure in them (throwing of course!), and for once I'm ok with allowing him to play as he pleases... their plush, no one gets hurt and nothing breaks. LOL

 Here are some of the wonderful toys and books currently available for purchase:




The first 50 readers of my blog can take advantage and receive 15% their order by using code ymf15. I am also giving away 1 shop credit of $10 toward your purchase of $25 or more!!

To enter 1. follow the blog (currently followers skip this step), and 2. comment on this post why you love educational toys

Sunday, August 19, 2012

Paper Mama Photo Challenge - Eyes

”The


I have recently found a love of photography. As I am smacked with realty of how fast my children are growing, I find it so important to capture beautiful images of my children to enjoy for years to come. I have even enrolled in a photography class through my local community college.

I stumbled upon a few blogs, contests and forums to help refine my craft. One of which is this Challenge through Paper Mama. Enjoy this fun picture of AJ.

Eyes Wide Shut




Saturday, August 18, 2012

Back from my hiatus

I don't know where to begin..... I took some time off to get my life in order.. establish a new routine, and well.... get my anxiety under control that is. (yes I am very open about it, and I wish more mommies would be). I've struggled with this dark burden of panic attacks for about 2 years, and I have finally found somethings that work. One of which is relaxation... hard yes with 2 children, but possible with an amazing husband.



We have also been in the process of enjoying many projects. Such as a cute little garden area for me to sit, and relax while watching my boys play.


I have also happily gone back to work part time, for those of you that have been following my blog for a while, I searched high and low, trying to find the right fit, and I finally found it. I enjoy working, I also love being home with my children as much as possible. I am not a fan of traditional child-care, and my husband and I are blessed with flexible schedules, and retired parents.

We have also decided to allow our oldest (AJ) to stay in the toddler program he has been in until December when he turns 3 (and can no longer be in that room), then we are homeschooling for pre-school with his older (4 year old) cousin.

We've been busy, yet blissfully simple. We're taking a relaxing vacation to the cost of Maine, which I will post about later, and enjoying the last of the summer with wonderful hikes, beach, and sunshine filled days.








Monday, April 23, 2012

Earth Day/ Spring Activities

On Earth Day we enjoyed some lazy time, reading about seeds, and some planting fun.

Because my budding artist enjoys everything about art, we painted our pots first. I asked AJ what colors he wanted and he excitedly answered "Gweeeeeeen" (Green); he must have known how significant that color meant to the world as a whole, and how going "green" is important for him and his little friends generation.

The best part about planting seeds and allowing children to watch them grow.. is the pleasure of eating fruits, herbs and vegetables harvested by your toddler! AJ was so excited, and this morning he ran over to the pot to check to see if the seeds were "up" yet.



What you used for this activity:
Reading "The Tiny Seed"
1. Terra Cotta pot
2. Acrylic Paint
3. Organic seeds (we used tomateo seeds)
4. Organic potting soil and compost
5. Pick a fun book to read pertaining to veggies, planting seeds, or whatever your little heart desires. (we read The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle $3.12 over at Amazon.com)

Have Fun!!! =)

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

More Reason's I WANT To Homeschool

Today my toddler read a book to me!!! I don't know it was from memory, or if he could actually read it. Either way I'm thrilled!  Together we read numerous books daily! I often point out to him words and pictures, asking him to tell me what it is, what sound is makes, or I tell him stories to help him connect the information.

I continue to play with the idea of homeschooling, although I have yet to (fully) pull him out of the toddler program he is in. I know that being home with me he stands a better chance of being a bright well mannered thriving little boy. Going to school and being influenced by other children, whose parents more then likely haven't instilled the values or morals in them that mine have scares me! Not having an option to focus his studies on his strengths, or cater to what he wants to do that particular day saddens me. He is so beyond and capable of much more then drawing or coloring all day (which is what happens in Preschool)... At this point I am really siding with homeschooling. I know he needs the peer interaction, and he can get it! There are so many homeschool groups, and activities out there it's unbelievable.

I stumbled upon these stats today, and it's interesting:

Stanford University (like most serious universities) actively recruits homeschoolers, and they accept a higher percentage of their homeschooled applicants 

The most recent study on this comes from The University of St. Thomas. They studied their student population and split them into four groups: those who graduated from public schools, those who graduated from private Catholic schools, those who graduated from private non-Catholic schools, and those who graduated from homeschools. Here is a graph that summarizes their major findings




Thank you Dr. Jay L. Wile for this information

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Felt Board

 Felt Boards are so adorable! I can remember as a little girl having a ball playing for hours on end. A felt board provides hands on learning, which is beneficial to a child's development and self esteem. Felt boards stretch the imagination as well as giving pure entertainment.


Felt Boards are a mutli-sensory approach- allowing children to feel the different textures, AJ was absolutely floored by not needing glue to make them stick! It is intellectual using a cause and effect. NOT to mention mommy and daddy had a blast making this board.

I found this board at the dollar store for ($1), I went to Joanne's Fabric and purchased 1/2 yard of light blue, 1/4 yard of green, and wa-la you have the bases of our "Everything Outdoors" board! 
I then used scraps of felt from other projects to make a house (triangle and square shapes- do not glue so the child can construct this themselves), a car with tires (again do not glue), a tree (which was glued), flowers (glued), the sun, stars *not pictured, and clouds *not pictured.


Tuesday, March 20, 2012

They Do Exsist

Have you ever met someone and got a high? Pre-mommy life I worked in a VIP lounge, I hung with the best of 'em, I rubbed elbows with A-list celebrities... and never have I been star struck, or felt so in awe. However today I met the lovely woman behind the blog Our Muddy Boots, she was such a delight, a breathe of fresh air.... I saw myself in her, and it felt GREAT!


We chatted about attachment parenting, nursing, joys, and lessons of parenting, and coming to terms to our type A personalities clashing with our new lives.


I have learned over the course of the past 2 years women need to support and encourage each other, it's so hard when you don't necessarily see eye to eye, or have the same passions as one another, but keep the faith that what you're doing as a mother is what is right for you, and know there are others out there who will support and encourage you to strive to be the best mother, wife, and friend you can be.


Friday, March 2, 2012

Banana Sour Cream Bread

After a day of being snowed in, watching my boys play, and relaxing with my husband I enjoyed the simplicity of cooking, cleaning and taking pleasure in the quite easy life.

This morning I woke up yearning for the same comfort and incomplex day I just experienced less than 12 hours prior... It seemed beyond my reach, as Allen hustled for work, I woke a sleeping and cranky toddler for school... and I thought about all the errands I needed to run.

I took a breather, smiled, and headed for kitchen! I was determined to have just a piece a mild day, and  it was start with Banana Bread... Or for this matter Banana SOUR CREAM Bread.


Ingredients:

2 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 cup and 2 tablespoons butter
1-1/2 cups white sugar
2 eggs
3 very ripe bananas, mashed
1/2 (16 ounce) container sour cream1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt1-1/2 teaspoons baking soda
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2/3 cup and 1 tablespoon chopped walnuts (optional)

Directions:


1.Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Grease loaf pans. In a small bowl, stir together white sugar and cinnamon. Dust pans lightly with cinnamon and sugar mixture.

2.In a large bowl, cream butter and sugar. Mix in eggs, mashed bananas, sour cream, vanilla and cinnamon. Mix in salt, baking soda and flour. Stir in nuts. Divide into prepared pans.

3.Bake for 60-90 minutes, until a toothpick inserted in center comes out clean.


Thursday, March 1, 2012

Nesting Flower Pots Stack 'em Up Pots Waldorf Montessori Inspired

"What child doesn't love to stack, stack and unstack?
Turn them upside down, right side up, stack them, knock them over, nest them together. Can you find an object that matches the color of each bowl around you? The possibilities are endless with your child's imaginative mind. A fun way to learn colors and then a wonderful addition to dollhouse play, or a tea party."

When I read this oh-so-fun description on The Baby Bungalow's  etsy page I wanted to play with these nesting pots myself, and knew that my 2 year-old had to have them!!! 

Learning toys for toddlers can assist children in many developmental areas, as well as assisting them in exploring the world in new ways. Learning toys for toddlers strengthen skills. These nesting pots act as simple stacking toys and simple matching toys which are great toys for this age group.

Between the ages of 1-3 toddlers enjoy doing simple things such as stacking objects and knocking them down, putting objects in a container and dumping them out, and these nesting pots are perfect for doing so. Since receiving our nesting pots my toddler has used them as jelly bean containers (which helped with our counting to 10), he has stuffed his play dough inside the coordinating colors.Toddlers enjoy combining objects to make something new as well as pretending, so naturally he then made believe the nesting pots and play dough was an ice cream cone.




Each little flower pot measures 1 3/4" Diameter x 1-15/16" tall
The 6 pot set is durable, painted with a non-toxic water based paint, sealed with our own all natural sealer AND Made from solid wood here in the US.

Color may vary slightly, it all depends on how the wood accepts the paint.

Have any questions? Contact the shop owner 

All opinions are my own, truthful stories, nor was I paid to write this review. I did receive this product at a discounted rate to provide a review.
 

Thursday, February 16, 2012

New Pankcake Receipe- Buttermilk

Buttermilk Pancakes:

1 cup (130 grams) whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons (28 grams) granulated white sugar
1 large egg, lightly beaten
1 cup (240 ml) buttermilk
3 tablespoons (40 grams) unsalted butter, melted
Plus extra melted butter for greasing the pan.

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Black History Month

As a say-it-loud-I'm-Black-and I'm-proud kind of woman I look forward to this month, and we plan to enjoy the month. Not that we don't acknowledge and celebrated any other month, but this month is nationally recognized.

Here's a list of Boston events my boys and I will be attending and have attended

First on our agenda is the Museum of African American History. Also we plan to finish watching Black in Latin America, which is a great documentary by Henry Lewis Gates Jr. a Boston resident, showcasing the influence of African descent on Latin America. 



We're making a Unity Wreath tomorrow... With different color's of "brown" paints!! Super excited to do this craft (I will post pictures later). I got the idea here


What fun things do you plan to do?






Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Sh*t Crunchy Mamas Say

I'm sure by now you have stumbled across one of the "sh*t" people say videos. They are hilarious and so true it's erie. Well of course it was only a matter of time because a crunchy/natural mom got a hold of the trend and jumped on the bandwagon.





My favorites:

Love the Amber teething necklace- Yes I bought one for Liam! lol.
Oh we don't have a crib... I didn't have one at first either... however NOW Liam only sleeps good in it.
Facebook took down another one of my breastfeeding photos! LOL!!

Coconut Oil... HAHA! I swear I hadn't seen this video before my post yesterday =)

And last but not least, this video brought some laughter to my crappy day (literally) I've been cleaning poop out of diapers, off my me, and changing my poor little man's clothing all!

Thanks Natural Mamas

Green Toys Giveaway!!

Check out this super cute blog! Give Peas a Chance

Monday, January 30, 2012

Meal Plan Mondays & Coconut Chocolate Chip Cookies

As a mom I am always trying to make sure everyone is taken care of. I need to be sure Allen leaves for work in time with lunch bag in hand, full of hearty and healthy items to snack, to have for lunch, and for dinner (he works 13 hour shifts). I make sure my milk supply stays steady to provide Liam with his leche, I buy the healthiest snacks for the independent I-don't-wanna-eat-that-2-year old and and hide all his veggies he needs inside of meals you couldn't even imagine to hide foods in. 

 

 I have realized that all my focus on everyone around me leaves me depleted and craving sweets at the end of the day. I see myself slowly slipping into horrible habits. Habits that could lead to weight gain, depression, and just not a mommy that can do the best for everyone is she is falling apart. 

 

So as part of my Meal Plan Mondays I am starting to put more emphasis on mommy! Mommy needs to eat; healthy, Mommy needs to get rest, Mommy needs to get excerise-regularly. Mommy needs to to get it together, and take care of her too. 

With that said here's my Meal Plan Mondays:

Monday: sick household= leftovers from the weekend

Tuesdays: Grilled Chicken (yes I grill mid-winter) with green salad, pink beans, and brown rice. Since this is one of Allen long days when he's gone from breakfast until after bedtime for the boys, I have also prepared tuna salad to have as a snack throughout the day and tons of veggies.

Wednesday: Chicken Quesadilla and avocado salad

Thursday: MYOP (Make Your Own Pizza) Night

Friday: Dinner @ Nonnies. Every Friday we spend Friday late afternoon/ early evening with my grandmother.. we usualy get takeout, it's fun, and best of all MOMMY DOESN'T COOK!

Saturday: Vegetarian Lasagna

Sunday: Superbowl feast!


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Meal Plan Mondays

So sorry for the delayed post. This Monday started a new semester for classes for my husband and I, which get's me to the importance of planning and prepping as much as possible. This week I am all about making multiple meals out of the same dishes. I have been on a hunt for simplicty since becoming a mother of 2, I do realize that majority of the choas, OK ALL of the choas I bring upon myself. I can't help it, I suffer from SUPER Mom syndrome. None the less, one way I help to manage my families busy lifes, is by meal planning, and preping.

Some helpful hints I have are as follows:

1. Plan it- Don't panic! Which a clear cut plan of what you will cook for the week you are sure NOT to forget anything at the grocery store, causing extra trips during the week, as well as not scattering at the last minute to decide what to make for dinner.

2. Season and freeze meats. Although I don't always do this I do try. For instance Sunday's chicken was seasoned a week in adavce, frozen, and made it taste wonderful.

3. Pre-cut things like onions, mince garlic. Although you can buy garlic already minced, it's cheaper to do this yourself.

Our Meal Plan- week of 1/22/2012
Sunday: Rosterri Chicken with ricotta gnocchi (pre-made) and green beans
Monday: Spicy Chicken Curry Soup
Tuesday: Left over soup
Wednesday: Tilpia with Mango Salsa & Sauteed Veggies (weight watchers dish)
Thursday: Left over veggies (form the day before) and stuffed tortellini
Friday: Tortelinni soup (from stuffed tortellini)
Saturday: Takeout night- Mom does need a break from the kitchen!!


Monday, January 16, 2012

Silver Leaf Cosmetic Lip Balm!!

Roughly 80% of Americans feel Lip balm is essential, yet 32% feel you shouldn't spend more then $15.00, however not less then $5.00. Well....I have found magic in a tube.... and it's NATURAL! Chemical free, and safe to wear while kissing all over your babies, yet only $2.70, AFTER using the code FABMOM. Silver Leaf Cosmetic is a local company (right in Boston), with not only great products, but amazing customer service.


So far I've used Silver Leaf Cosmetic Lip Balm everyday since receiving it for review. I have worn it alone and with lipstick too. The container is super cute. 

With the harsh below zero weather, you need to rescue your lips! Using SLC will help prevent and relief chap lips. Made from natural local beeswax and organic olive oil. Beeswax is very moisturizing, can help protect the lips from the harmful rays of the sun, and has a pleasant smell. It can also help prevent infections and cold sores.



Because I love love love self maintenance, and feel all woman, especially mommies, need a little pampering, I am offering one luck winner a SLC Lip Balm.

Giveaway Begins 1/17/2012


To subscribe to this blog please follow this link


Friday, January 13, 2012

Can't BEET These Brownies!

With a toddler who was introduced to CHOCOLATE by his grandmother and great grandmother, he demands it at least once a day.... with that said you can imagine how crafty I have become. 

One of my favorite recipes to incorporate health into chocolate is Beet Brownies. These brownies have 2 cups of beets. I have also added carrots in them (in previous batches). These brownies are more of a cake consistency then actual brownies, but delicious none the less! once cooled the beet flavor completely disappears!! 

Ingredients
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup vegetable oil
  • 2 cups of pureed beets
  • 1/4 cup cocoa
  • 1 (3.9 ounce) package instant chocolate pudding mix
  • 1 1/2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Directions:

  1. Beat together eggs and sugar.
  2. Add oil, beets, cocoa and pudding, mix well.
  3. Blend in vanilla, flour, soda and salt.
  4. Bake in greased and floured 11 x 15 x 1" sheet cake pan for 30 minutes at 375.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Shared Joy Is A Double Joy

 Allen and I have been together 10 years! Yes that's right 10 years! We have never broken up, although it's come very close, we never played those type of "games".  From the moment I met him as a Junior in High School I knew he was 'The One', like most do at that age. None the less he turned out to actually be the one.

Granted our realtionship isn't picture perfect, but we are perfect for each other. we most definitely compliment one another. 

Some of the things that I have found to make us a success story are these simple rules I live by and swear by.

1. Being Secure With Ourselves: Allen and I are NOT super models by any means- this can be used as a disclaimer! LOL. But dammit we are beautiful people! I do not let other women intimidate, and Allen knows no other man, can or will ever have me like he does. 

2. Expressing Our feelings, and Our Needs: Even though we have been together for a long time we are not 100% in sync, I am not physic and neither is Allen. So without communication we are not fully functionable. 

3. Not Expecting The Moon: From time to time I find myself comparing Allen to my other girlfriends husbands, wishing he could cook like them, or was more romantic like them.... Then I sit back and take in the facts- Allen might not do some of the things these husbands do, but he TRYS! And some of the things that other spouses accept from their husbands I would never, and I'm sure that some of my girlfriends wish their husbands had some of the traits Allen has. Regardless We don't put too much expectation on each other, and with that said we don't lower our standards to make the other one feel more comfortable in this realtionship, we do encourage the best for one another.

4. Picking Our Battles Wisely: Some things simply aren't worth arguing about. Case and point- Allen will complain about me leaving the juice out from time to time, but then he makes complete messes in the kitchen, I don't say anything 99.9% of the time because it starts this domino affect of accusing, and denying, and getting all worked up over absolutely nothing. Rather I messed up, and need to clean up, or Allen sits the juice on top of the refrigerator where I can't reach it (which he does often!! lol), it's not always worth pointing it out, and regardless stuff needs to be cleaned, tidied up, and put away.... Save for energy for something else... like chasing with your crawler, and playing with your toddler. 

5. Making Every Effort To Keep Our Love Life Alive & Having A Healthy Sex Life: We find the time OFTEN to make breakaways from demands of work, household chores and our roles as mommy and daddy to fall in love all over again. Every date night, every late night recap, every moment I get to cuddle or lay on his chest I appreciate and look forward to. He loves when I get all dolled up, and when he's able to hold me, without me having a baby attached to me. We always find the energy- from where I don't know, to have as much sex as possible. It saddens me, and makes Allen appreciate me just that much more when we learn from friends how their flame has went out, how they might get to connect on that passionate level once, maybe twice a month. Like my mother told me- "You need to date your husband, the same way you dated him before you were his wife"... The things you did before- getting dressed up, keeping yourself maintained, being the girl he fell in love with are all things you need to continue to do once you've said I do. 




"Find someone worth your tears, worth your laughter, worth your heart and that loves you as much as you love them."
-Unknown




Pregnant with AJ @ Our Baby Shower
  
Pregnant with Liam @ a Friends wedding

Being silly together, because at the end of it all he is the 
ONE person I can always be myself with


Enjoying a little Celtics game

One of our many nights out BEFORE Children

This was the night I found out I was pregnant

Post children bonding

Pregnant @ my Best Friends wedding

Most recently out for a datenight




  

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Natural Parenting


What is "natural parenting", and why is it desirable? Personally I've learned labels and "limitations" can be quit judgmental, and perhaps even biased, but I connected with this article I found when researching how this parenting style was defined by others. I relate to almost all of what Dana touches upon, however I do it while attempting to be FABULOUS at the same time.

I want to encourage other young, and younger mothers to consider listening to their bodies, focusing on cues from their children, learning and embracing natural parenting:

Natural Parenting Comes Naturally

By Dana Portwood

Had someone told me five years ago that I was a "natural parent," I would have sputtered in protest. To me, natural parenting brought to mind images of a woman toting a baby attached to her breast in public, sleeping communally on a mattress on the floor and flaunting hairy armpits. None of those pictures pertained to me! (ME EITHER!!)

Older and wiser now, I realize that I am most definitely a natural parent. I do what comes naturally to me, and I don’t let society’s definition of convenience or of natural family compel me to do otherwise.
I nurse my babies, but they sleep in their own beds most nights. I used cloth diapers at home but felt no guilt when I sent my children to church or their grandparents’ home in disposables. My children ate pureed peas when I had time and Gerber when I didn’t. I homeschool, stay at home, read out loud and discipline when necessary.
I am not certain when or how I became a natural parent. Perhaps it was when conventional medicine told me that I couldn’t, wouldn’t and shouldn’t have babies -- but I did anyway. Perhaps it was when I determinedly breastfed my children from my one lactating breast. It may have been when I decided that no educational system run by our federal government could possibly offer a superior education to my children (and certainly not one better than I could provide on my own).
Whatever the case, here I am: a mom out of touch with society’s issues and trends, but firm in the belief that my husband and I can and do raise our children in the most spiritually, mentally and physically healthy way we can.

The broad palette of natural

While most natural parents do share in common the fact that most of us don’t “fit the mold," other practices and beliefs vary widely from family to family. My children don’t sleep in my bed every night. In fact, I rather encourage them to let me have my own sleeping space, but they often climb in with me during the wee hours.
We do have a pediatrician who does know us by name, but we only visit him after applying common sense tactics and an appropriate wait to see if the problem is something the child’s system can naturally overcome. My children are immunized, but probably not on the same schedule as most of their friends.
On the other hand, yes, I serve wheat bread. We eat gardens of fresh or frozen fruits and vegetables. We limit and strictly monitor TV time. We read aloud often. We play board and card games. We engage in some form of strenuous physical activity daily. We don’t own a single video game, although my five-year-old knows more about the computer than I do. Are we a natural family?

Stepping back from the mad rush

Now that I have entered the world of natural parenting, what surprises me is how much criticism and condemnation I receive for my actions. When did it become necessary for an entire society to dictate my parenting standards? It doesn’t take a village to raise my children. All they need are their very committed parents, along with occasional support from family and friends.
So what defines a natural parent? I don’t believe it’s necessarily specific practices of natural parenting. I would say it is an overwhelming belief that we as parents are able to decide which method of parenting is best for our child, regardless of social conventions. For a very short span of time, we shift our focus from ourselves to these delightful creatures we have brought into this world.
It’s not all about us, our careers, our convenience or our agendas. In a "we need it and we need it now – it’s all about convenience" society, our family has chosen to slow down, simplify and take time concerning the things that matter. While growing up takes years, the time goes by too quickly. I don’t want to time-crunch the moment; I want to savor it. Getting down to the natural basics of parenting has allowed me to do just that.
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Dana Portwood, who was diagnosed with cancer at only 22 years old, is active in promoting cancer awareness among young women. Dana lives in Florida with her husband and three daughters.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Making Natural "Cool"

Ever since Teen Mom, and celebs like Jamie Lynn Spears, more and more younger and younger moms have popped up... And being a young mother is fine... Hey I'm only 25!! But let's make Natural Parenting, and doing what feels best for our children something that is cool and sought after (like the fad of a cute baby bump)..

Celebrities Breast Feeding- in PUBLIC! Nursing is not only easier (in most cases) then preparing a bottle of formula, but it's healthier, and better for baby! =)