shot out into the sunlight

voyage

 
For the first time in almost a year, I finally feel…stable.

I started taking Paxil about a month ago after being tired of feeling like I was drowning 24/7. I’m not sure if it’s the meds or that the kids are getting easier to manage, or maybe the combination of the two, but I feel genuinely happy and less batshit crazy lately. I worry less and play more. I yell at my kids far less. I don’t feel like I’m buried in chores and I’m finding more time for myself.

Yes.. TIME FOR MYSELF! The dream.

Dex has started taking one long nap a day instead of two shorter ones, so he and Cora nap at the same time now for 2-3 glorious hours. 3 hours to myself every day! This is something I dreamed of months ago. Yearned for. NEEDED. And Dex is now walking (still a little wobbly, but we’re there) so he can keep up with Cora a little better and they entertain each other more. I can cook dinner without someone losing their mind now, guys!

I also joined a couple of 2 under 2 mom groups on Facebook and wish I had done it sooner. It’s so nice to know I was never alone and most of these moms feel like they’re slowly going crazy too. Every now and then there’s a reassuring post from a mom whose kids are now 4 and 5 and you can see how much easier things will eventually be. Hope! haha.

And now I’m coming out of the fog and seeing that we’re going to make it. I don’t regret going the 2 under 2 route one bit, but man this last year has been one of the hardest of my life.

– amanda

3 Products I love: January

I always love seeing what products other bloggers love, though it’s usually things like beauty products or food. Don’t get me wrong, I love those things (there’s a beauty product on today’s list!) but the products I REALLY love here lately are the things that make my life easier. So here are three things I’m digging this month. 😉

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The iLife Robotic Vacuum

We have three dogs (two with long hair) who are in and out of the doggy door all day and two kids under 3, so you can imagine what our floors can look like if they’re neglected too long. I was using our cordless Dyson every other day spending about half an hour just knocking out our downstairs, which is primarily hardwoods with some tile and a huuuuge Moroccan rug that of course sheds like a bitch. I put off getting a robot vacuum for so long because A) I was afraid it wouldn’t work in our messy household, and B) they’re stupid expensive.
I saw a few friends post about their iLife vacuums and when I finally looked it up, I was shocked that it was under $200 AND they make one for pets. I hit “buy” so fast, but I was still hesitant when it arrived. I actually kept the box out because I just knew we would be sending it back.
It took one week before Lupita had me sold. Yes I named her, slapped some googly eyes on her, and consider her one of my best friends now. I like to give her a few words of positive encouragement when I empty her “purse” in the mornings. We run her at night after we go to bed and I get to wake up to clean floors, then I run her in our bedroom when the kids go down for a nap…otherwise they chase her. The kids love Lupita too. Once a week I do a quick once-over with the Dyson so I can get the stairs and behind the kids toys, but it takes all of 20 minutes for me to knock that out.
I’m in love with a robot vacuum and I don’t care who knows it.

 

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Shea Moisture African Black Soap

I joined a few beauty groups on Facebook recently and constantly saw girls talking about this so I decided to give it a shot after having breakouts off and on ever since I had Dexter. I’ve exclusively oil-cleansed with coconut oil for two years now, so it dried out my face a little at first but a good moisturizer took care of it pretty quickly. I already see a huge difference in my skin! I’m a fan. (And it smells good!)

 

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Carbona Fat and Cooking Oil stain remover

As if the robot vacuum wasn’t the most “mom” thing to share ever, I’m sharing a stain remover. Not sorry. My family has a real knack for getting grease on their clothes (*cough*MARK*cough*) and this stuff ALWAYS works. Even for set in stains that I don’t notice until the shirt has already been washed and dried…which is what happens 9 out of 10 times. haha. I just rub a little bit in with an old toothbrush, let it set for a few minutes, and toss it in the wash like usual. Life saver.

Cheers to less messes and clearer skin in 2017. 😉

– amanda

coming up for air

It’s been awhile. And I’ve started this post probably nineteen times in the last 3 weeks but never have a moment to finish it. 

Momma’s been struggling a little. Maybe it’s Seasonal Affective Disorder (what a bitch these short days are), maybe it’s the season in itself when my family remembers all the loved ones we’ve lost in the past around this time, and maybe it’s just the stress of the holidays. 

Either way, I’ve been feeling like I’m drowning a lot. The kids have been a handful. Like significantly more than usual. Cora literally has me banging my head against the wall on a daily basis. Dexter is so happy, but so ornery and so curious. Mark has been busy. And honestly, I don’t feel like I’m getting out of the house enough or getting enough time to myself. But then when I have it I feel like shit. 

Mom guilt, mom guilt, mom guilt. You evil bitch. 

I didn’t make any New Years resolutions this year and I don’t have a word or phrase that I’m focusing on for the year. I just want to stick to what I said back in November and take care of myself. That’s it. And I’ve been saying that for so long but it’s so hard. I am awful at waiting until I feel like I’m drowning, having a breakdown, and demanding a break instead of slipping in breaks when I can. I need to not feel guilty about it. I have to remind myself constantly (no really ALL THE DAMN TIME) that I’m taking care of a family but I’m the only one who takes care of me, so it’s okay to put myself first every now and then. This will include getting on some meds. I’m a better mom when I feel like a person and not a shell of a person who does nothing but clean and change diapers all day. I deserve happiness, hobbies, and things that are for me. (I posted about this on instagram the other day and was sadly shocked at how many other moms struggle with finding something for themselves.) 

The kids didn’t go to Mothers Day Out today because #snowday, but their naps collided just enough for me to take a bath. (Ignore my toes that haven’t been painted in forever.) There are dirty dishes in the sink and our living room looks like a toy tornado plowed through it. There’s laundry waiting for me in the dryer and I badly need to go through our bathroom drawers and get rid of shit. But right now I’m going to fill my cup a little while I have a few fleeting moments to do so. 

P.S. I would love to find time to write and post more. I need to make that a priority. 

– amanda 

the quenzer den: cora’s room

(Y’all I totally forgot to turn down the ISO before I took these, so ignore the graininess and general quality. haha.)

This girl loves. her. room. We take her up for her nap every day and she spends anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour playing. She loves her big girl bed and her tent!

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Dresser :: IKEA (Tarva line, discontinued, painted by Mark)
Bed :: IKEA
Rug :: Target (not sure if it’s still available)
Chair :: BabiesRUs
Quilt on chair :: Love Gretta
Toy shelf :: IKEA (discontinued)
Tent :: Amazon

If you’d like to know where we got anything that wasn’t listed, let me know! I’ll probably share our bedroom and bathroom next week. 🙂

– amanda

2016 winter capsule wardrobe

For this capsule I let go of the “I have to have color in my wardrobe, right?” feeling and just added what I loved.

It all happened to be black, white, grey, camel, and olive. *shrug*

I’m coming to terms with the fact that I prefer a neutral palette for my wardrobe. I like pops of color in accessories (hello pink shoes!) and makeup. I feel like I can layer more efficiently with all neutrals, and I LOVE layering. I seriously have endless options for this capsule and I’ve already built so many outfits in the Stylebook app!

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If you’d like to know where I got anything, let me know!

– amanda