Cyber Monday Quick Target Guide!

If you are like me, I love a good sale, but I also don’t have time to look online for the best deals….so here is a quick guide that I am using to buy for my kiddos (and a few things for me) this year! Everything is from my favorite store, Target. So, if you are shopping TODAY (November 27) everything is an EXTRA 15% off the discounted price! Happy Shopping!

4-6 Year Old (Boy and Girl)


Me!

 

A Basic Guide to Human Decency

It’s been pretty hard to miss the news lately.  Nothing too pretty.  Actually it is pretty horrific.  People are mean and saying and doing horrible things.  People are getting hurt (physically and emotionally) and it’s not okay.

Many of us are raising children and I keep preaching that we live in an amazing world with incredible people, yet we are constantly bombarded by images of people at their worst.

img_1213

 Home Bistro Chef Prepared Meals

I get it.  Nice people doing nice things are boring and not newsworthy.  But, dear God has it gotten so bad that we are shocked that someone would return a lost cell phone to the right owner? Or a mom at Target with screaming children is given a smile instead of an eye roll?

Maybe we have all just become so jaded and accustom to it we just expect to see the worst in people.  At the beginning of 2017 I wrote a post about Being Positive in a Negative (Online) World It’s not easy, folks.  We really need to make conscious choices to do this.  Otherwise we are all going to raise a bunch of jerks.

So, what do we do about it? Maybe we should all go back to basics and practice what we preach. Here a few simple things we can all do:

  • Look people in the eye when you cross paths.  Smile and nod. If you have never done this before, just try it! Guess what? There is a very good chance they will do something crazy…..reciprocate and smile back! Sounds crazy, I know.  But, please just try it! You might make someones day.
  • If someone does something nice for you send a simple thank-you note.  Not an e-mail, text message or Facebook message.  Actually write their name on a piece of paper and THANK THEM.   I know that we all have a million things going on and I am the first one to admit it had taken me longer then I’d like to admit to get them out sometimes.  But I know when I get a handwritten note from someone it makes me feel like my effort was appreciated. Tagging them in a Instagram post is not the same thing.
  • If you can’t say something nice, then don’t say anything at all.  This one is the most easy and difficult thing to do all at the same time.  Sometimes your opinion should NOT be heard.  I know, I know we all have the right to say whatever we want……but what’s the point if is just going to hurt someone or make someone angry? It is called being polite and having manners.

You might be reading this and think ‘wow! This lady is angry and bitter’.  Well I am a little bit. Our parents didn’t raise us to be jerks. I don’t understand how we have all gotten so self righteous and…..well rude!

img_1074

So, please get off your cell phone when you are checking out at a store. Think twice about blasting your horn when someone takes a second to go once the light turns green and pick up your neighbor’s newspaper and deliver it to their front door…..for no other reason then just because.

Are doing these things going to change the world? Maybe not.  But if you can make someone’s day a little bit brighter then we will all be better off.

 

The Best Kept Secret of Back to School

Last Tuesday I was on my weekly outing at Target.  At first glance everything seemed to be normal and in place but after a few moments I was something different in the air.  I couldn’t quite put my finger on it at first.  It was calm, the moms all had a little twinkle in their eyes.

Then I realized what it was.  School was in session and we all had gained our freedom back! After a long hard summer we could (kind of) do what we wanted to! There were NO school aged children in the isles begging their moms for toys or the sugary cotton candy flavored yogurt. All seemed right in the world again.

img_1003

Moments after I had my epiphany I felt a tap on my shoulder.  It was a fellow mom I knew casually from the gym.  She asked how I was and exchanged pleasantries and I asked if her kids were in school (she was flying solo).

“Oh yes. I miss them so much. I’m so sad!”

Liar!!!

I can see it in your face! You are relaxed.  You got showered and dressed without interruptions! You ARE WEARING MAKE-UP.  But of course I just smiled and told her that she deserves a few hours to herself and we went on our (very happy) ways.

This year September brought a few big changes to our household. Charlie has started full-time school and Henry is going to tot class two mornings a week.  That means I have FIVE glorious hours every week that I just have an (easy) infant to care for.  It gives me a moment to breath and remember WHY I love being a mom in the first place.

img_1130

So far during these few special hours we get together,  Whitney  and I have gone to Target (duh), taken a long walk and spent an amazing half hour getting a pedicure. What are my plans of how to spend the rest of these great mornings? I might get breakfast with another ‘childless’ mom, hang out at home and cuddle my baby or spend it at the gym. The point is I can do whatever I want! And that really has not happened in a long time. I will enjoy every moment of it without apology.

You see, there is this crazy thing happens to me when my kids are in school.  I actually start to miss and appreciate them! The saying that ‘distance makes the heart grow founder’ is so true. They are awesome kids and I realize that SO MUCH MORE when I’m not with them every moment of everyday.

So, mama, when that moment finally happens and you find yourself having a few hours to yourself.  Don’t be sad! Enjoy it and embrace it.

 

Three kids? No Big Deal!

It is 8:00 in the evening and my husband and I have just gotten all THREE of our kids to bed.  We are exhausted and also thrilled to have a few hours to do……well whatever we want to do! We recently have entered ‘zone defense’ parenting.  The big transition from two to three kids.  It is hard.  Even though our newest addition is a really good baby……just having another body to feed, bath, change, love and keep alive has kept us on our toes!

Everyone told me that transitioning from two to three children is no big deal. I think they were just trying to calm my fears. But it is a VERY big deal! And in a very different way then going from one to two kids. Going from one to two was emotionally difficult for me. I wanted Charlie, my oldest, to still feel loved while catering to a newborn’s needs. Not to mention Henry, my second, was a more difficult baby (hello colic)! But, going from two to three has given me new and more…shall we say logistical challenges!

For example: I literally only have two arms. I can feed the baby a bottle while playing cars with Charlie, but then don’t have another arm when Henry wants a hug so he’s not left out!

Two car seats fit perfectly into most cars, but three car seats takes a little finagling. We ended up getting a bigger car with a third row and I expected my five-year-old to be able to buckle himself in. Not so much. Several months later and lots of practice I’ve got it down pat. I can coral all three kids in one door and while I’m securing the baby carrier the other two get into position and from there I help them buckle up.  I can do it in under two minutes (that in it’s self deserves an award).

kids1

Before baby Whitney cam into our lives as a family of four we could often sit down together for dinner. Now, without doubt, the second I sit down so our family can have a few minutes of needed together time the baby starts screaming.

It’s a never ending cycle of bottles, sippy cups, naptimes, tantrums, diaper changes and baths.

But also a never ending cycle of laughs, giggles, hearing ‘I love you’ and my favorite part. Seeing my boys love on their little sister.

So yes- it’s hard. But in a different way. I hear people say it gets easier…..I just roll my eyes.  Some parts get easier, but others get more difficult.

We are all in the trenches, mama! No matter if you have one needy baby, pre-teens in middle school or driving your first ‘baby’ to college.

Offering phone order discounts up to 10% and group discounts up to 20%

Our Christmas Traditions

As I’ve said before.  I love Christmastime.  The music, the lights and decorations.  The love for family and just general merriment of the season.  Growing up my mom always made the season special for my brother and me.  I remember making cookies from scratch and vaguely recall a fleeing view of Santa Clause running across my back lawn on Christmas Eve!! It might (or might not) have been my next door neighbor……..but to a five-year-old girl….it was magic.

I might not do everything like my mom did, but now with my boys, Charlie and Henry, I do my best to make the moments special.  Sometimes Pintrest-picture worthy, sometimes not…but you know what? I love to see their smiles.  Here are a few of our favorite things to do around Metro Detroit that we have turned into somewhat of a tradition over the past few years.

Rochester Bright Light Show

Every year starting in late November and going through New Years Day, the city of Rochester Hills illuminates their downtown for an amazing show! It really takes my breath away.  Cars and people line the streets just to see it….and it’s FREE!

roch-2

 

Holiday Nights in Greenfield Village

Just imagine walking through a village when street lights were lantern and cars were Model T’s. Christmas from a simple time.  You can taste REAL roasted chestnuts (they are tasty)! See Christmas carolers dressed in old fashion clothes and take a horse drawn carriage ride through the old fashion town.  The night even ends with fireworks.  Buy tickets in advance (check out www.thehenryford.org for more info), but, I promise it is totally worth it!

henry-ford

Bronners CHRISTmas Wonderland

We could spend a weekend in the cute little town of Frankenmuth! About an hour north of Royal Oak, Michigan….it is an adorable German town that has famous chicken….but an even more famous Christmas store! There sight is out of this world.  It is about the size of three football fields and you can buy an ornament with any theme…..trucks (a favorite in our house), vintage, modern, Disney…..you get the point.  And BONUS! They will personalize ornaments on sight! But, warning! Go early in the season….it can get busy.

bronners

The Detroit Model Railroad Club

Okay, so this might not be a literal Christmas activity and you probably have never heard of this….it is in Holly, Michigan an adorable town 45 minutes from Royal Oak.  During Christmastime, it just puts you in the small town Christmas spirit.  And, our family with two boys, makes it worth the trip!  This is an actual club that started in 1935 and depicts a fictitious Detroit Union Train Station.  It is a sight! My boys (including my husband) could spend the whole afternoon there.  The size and detail are impressive.  After, enjoy the town decorated for the season.  Check out their website, because they are only open to the public certain weekends (www.dmrrc.org).

 

holly

holly-2

I hope this puts you into the Christmas spirit! Merry Christmas!