Project Revitalize 

As we are nearing the end of April, I’m starting my Spring Cleaning. I’m committed myself to eliminate what isn’t necessary. Each room, closet, cabinet, nook and cranny will be throughly gone thru, cleaned, and organized. I’m on a mission!

While going thru the books in the kids desk, I found it; what I’ve been ignoring. 

My New Years Resolutions. 

I always write them down as that seems to help me actually achieve them. This year, writing them down just turned it into a beautiful coloring page for my daughters. 

It’s almost May, and I haven’t done almost any of my resolutions. I put the paper to the side, kept doing what I’m doing, then a thought came to me. Why do I always put so much pressure on myself at the New Year to accomplish things I can do anytime? Obviously my mind wasn’t ready to even think about doing anything let alone actually do it. But I’m in a better place now than I was in January with my PPDA. Let’s re-evaluate these resolutions and see what I can really do!

When I set my mind to a goal, there’s always a word that sticks with me. Something that, in a sense, helps set the starting  point and keeps motivating me. This word came to me like a cat when it hears their treat bag. Fast and obvious. 

REVITALIZE. 

That’s my word. Here’s how I’m going to revitalize myself:

Revitalize physically through healthier eating. 2016 was a year of incredible joy being pregnant with Giovanni and then giving birth to him in October. But as it  turns out, growing this beautiful life and providing all he needs through nursing makes a person ravenous. And when you’re ravenous all the time, it’s all too easy to develop poor eating habits. By now (he’s almost 7 months), I am eating whatever my body craved and, in all honesty, whatever was the quickest and cheapest. I’ve been feeling completely lethargic, grumpy, and not myself. So, I’m taking steps toward healthier eating through portion control and clean eating. I’ve always felt my best when I ate clean, and it’s truly no harder than loading three kids into the mini van and taking them to Burger King. 



Revitalize through exercise. My body has not “bounced back” as quickly (or easily) as I had hoped it would after having Giovanni. It doesn’t help that I haven’t been eating the healthiest, nor following a healthy lifestyle in the least. I’ve been avoiding scales and jeans for far too long. Its time to do something about it. And in addition to revitalizing my body with healthy, clean foods, I know I need to revitalize my body with regular exercise. I will be getting back into my daily yoga practice, as well as restart Beachbody’s PiYo. Time to start getting my energy back and maybe loose a few LBs in the process. 



Mental revitalization through more books, less screen-time. With all the exhaustion that came with being mom of three, hauling my oldest to and from school, and all of my kids activities, I’d often resort to mindless browsing on my phone (Pinterest addict 🙋🏻) or a Fixer Upper binge simply because it was all I felt I could handle mentally. But rather than veg out during my down time, I want to get back into my love for reading. I’m committing myself to spending less time looking at screens and more time stimulating my mind with good literature. Starting with a great personal development, Hands Free Mama. (Psst! Any “must-reads,” I should know about? Comment below!)


Revitalize my marriage. I will say, I have an amazing marriage. My husband and I are the best of friends and best of team mates. Our problem is we don’t have much alone time. Between three busy children and a crazy work schedule, we’re lucky to get a half hour alone. I vow to make our time alone, no matter how little, more special. You can never be too close to your spouse, right?! 

Revitalize my “projects”. I’m going to call them projects. My many “businesses” per day. Most have been neglected for far too long and something in me is pushing to get them revitalized! I will pour more energy into them and make them flourish! Also, I have a new adventure I’m currently working on I cannot wait to share! My many “projects” aren’t necessarily to make tons of income (would be nice, of course), but it’s something that’s mine. Majority of the time I’m all mother, wife, daughter, and friend. Come the end of the day, there’s nothing that’s mine. Except these “projects”… I will be bringing them back to life and sharing on my blog page, so stay tuned!

Last, but not least…

Revitalize the homefront. Throughout the years, many moves, and three kids later, we’ve collected more “stuff” than should be legally allowed. We have a problem. Being that it’s Spring Cleaning time, I’m going room by room, inch by inch, going thru everything. If something hasn’t been touched in years, sell or donate. If it’s broken, trash. No more excuses as to why we need to keep so much “stuff”. Minimalist lifestyle. That’s the goal. Less “stuff” to maintain and clean, more time to live and enjoy life with our babies. 

My New Years Resolutions will be no more.. they are my goals. Period. I will accomplish them. I will revitalize my life. My struggle is I am a perfectionist, but I’m also a procrastinator. So I push things off until I know I can do it perfectly. I have to teach myself it will only get “perfect” if I try and try harder, not by sitting back and waiting. 

Today’s the day. Today change will happen. Praying for God to be by my side and to help me stay strong. Praying I have the support at home to revitalize our lives. I feel it in my bones something amazing is about to happen, and if I sit here and wait, it will just pass by!

Why I do spirit days at school…


Yesterday marked 100 days of school for my oldest daughter. 100 days in Kindergarten! So, the kids got the chance to dress up like they’re 100 years old. We got her all dressed up and she was totally loving it!


My daughter yesterday morning for her 100th day of school. Looking like a little old Italian lady!

I was rather disappointed to see less than half of the Kindergarteners were dressed up. Then, I saw a little boy bawling his eyes out because his mom didn’t dress him up, in which she tells him “We don’t do these stupid things.”  

Wow. 

Now, I’m not one to force my children to do things they don’t want. When we were told they could dress up, I explained it to her and told her what we could do. She helped me pick out her outfit, I did her hair, and she wanted to wear her favorite glasses from her science kit. It was a fun thing to do together. Most importantly, she wanted to dress up! If she told me she didn’t want to, I wouldn’t force her to. Spirit days are meant to be fun!

But to tell your child having school spirit is “stupid” made me very upset. Is it because you don’t want to take the time to dress your child up? Is it because you truly don’t care? 

First, I must say this. As parents, the most important people in our children lives, we are their biggest role models. We are to model the behavior we want to see from them. Something like encouraging positive spirit for school,  helps build a positive school atmosphere, which leads to a happier more productive learning environment. We want our children to succeed and love school, so when they get the opportunity to do something to show off their spirit and have fun, encourage them to participate! 

After yesterday and seeing the little boy crying about not participating in the 100th day celebration, mostly after hearing what his mother had said, I began reading. I read numerous studies, all positive reasons to encourage spirit in school. 

  1. It can improve a students committment to their education, making them better academically. 
  2. It creates a positive learning environment, which can make going to school even more exciting!
  3. It can make them more engaged in social and civic matters. 
  4. It can make students greater achievers. 
  5. It makes a student more creative and unique. 
  6. Overall, can make them happier in general. 

When our children become adults and have grown up participating in school spirit, it can reflect in their work ethic. I have seen it growing up. Students who dressed up for spirit week and cheered on their schools team, are today the employees that go above and beyond, that take an extra assignment to help the team, who are big team players. The ones who never showed school spirit go to work to do the bare minimum and never exceed expectations. 

I know it seems extreme to compare school spirit to work ethic, but it’s one in the same. In school, you’re not making a pay check but making grades. And working hard and striving to be the best gets you the best grades. In the work force, your not making grades per say but a paycheck. You work hard to fulfill your commitment to your company and go above any beyond to help your team. It’s the same! 

We need to encourage our children at a young age to be involved in activities, inside and outside of school! We need to encourage our children to be the best versions of themselves, even if it’s shown thru wearing a crazy hair style!  Encourage to love learning and that going to school isn’t something to dread but something to be excited for! School spirit is the foundation for so many other extremely important aspects in our children’s lives! 

So, yes, I’m that mom. I encourage school spirit and strive to create a positive experience for my children in every aspects of their lives, especially their education. I know it’s important, but it’s a lot of fun too!

Want to try something amazing?!

I’ve teamed up with the fantastic OnlineGym4me and tried their New Mommy, Fit Body Online Workout Program.
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More about the program: https://www.onlinegym4me.com/program/2/new-mommy-fit-body-online-workout-program/
Link for free yearly membership for you to try it out with me:

http://www.onlinegym4me.com/code/onlinegym4me/

Time to Talk

I am a mother to three beautiful babies. I am a wife to the most amazing man on earth. I’m growing my bakery slowly but surely. My blog continues to grow daily. I’ve been told I have a smile that lights up a room. I’ve been also told that I am a motivator. 

Majority of my life I have been this happy and joyful woman, always wore a smile, and strove hard to make others happy as well. Recently, it feels as if I woke up one day feeling completely overwhelmed, panicked, stressed, depressed… I feel as if no matter how blessed I am, how beautiful my life is, I can’t fight back these tears or bits of anger. 

About two months after giving birth to my beautiful baby boy, I was diagnosed with post partum depression and post partum anxiety. Something I never imagined I would face to battle. Like I said, I’ve always been so happy and cheerful. And now holding my baby boy… This should be the happiest moments of my life with my beautiful babies, I should be enjoying every second, but I’m drowning in this funk, covered by this dark cloud that won’t go away. 

My doctor wants to put me on medication to help with both, but emphasized how the medication could diminish my milk supply, as well as make my (currently controlled) heart condition worse. The negative side effects scared me just as much as the constant battle of emotions terrify me. But after a lot of consideration and talk with both my OBGYN and Cardio doctors, I’m trying to tackle this without medication. 

It’s a tough battle to say the least. I prefer to say “battle” over “suffer” cause everytime depression or anxiety hits, I will hit back twice as hard! For now, instead of going day by day, I’m going moment by moment. I am working hard on figuring out what works and what doesn’t. This last month I have spent reflecting on what triggers my anxiety and depression. How to put myself first so I can take care of everyone else. How to see a situation differently and teaching myself to react differently. 

I know now it’s perfectly okay to admit I’m not okay and that I need help. I’ve always been so stubborn and never wanted to burden others with my problems. But battling PPDA I’m learning that I need help from others as well as myself to get thru this. I want to be the best mother and wife I can possibly be. I will fight hard to get thru this and not let it consume me. 

I’m hoping sharing my story with everyone as I go thru this will help others, but also help myself. Getting what I’m feeling deep down out onto “paper” helps me tremendously!! So hold on tight…. cause it’s going to be a bumpy road to happiness and becoming a stronger better version of myself. 

New Years Eve…Eve lol

So 2017 is right around the corner. It feels like this year has just zipped by! I blinked and it’s almost over. So many amazing things have happened to our family, so much to be grateful for, a few things I hope to leave behind, and excited for the new year. 

My parents, I’d say, are traditionally old school. They believe in old wives tales and superstitions. Raised me the same way. Hey! What does it hurt to make sure all your money is faced the same way? It may or may not bring abundance of fortune to my household, but I still do it!

New Years Eve in our house has always been full of superstitions I thought were so silly, until I had my own family. I look back at my parents lives. They’ve always had more than they needed, lived in great health, and always happy. So yes, I continue them in our family. And we’ve always have what we need and then some, great health, and always happy. 

Today, I want to share with you those superstitions that we do for New Years Eve and New Years Day!

  1. First and foremost, eating black eyed peas on New Years Eve. You can make them any which way your heart desires! My mom always boiled them in hamhocks, I make a Cowboy Caviar. A bite of black eyed peas brings good luck for the new year!
  2. Eating greens brings prosperity. My mom would always alternate what greens we ate. In our house, we make a salad with spinach or romaine lettuce. 
  3. Kissing someone at midnight. Well, why wouldn’t you kiss someone you love? The meaning behind this is to bring affection to your love life in every month of the upcoming year. Who doesn’t want more affection?! 🙋🏻 Love you boo! 
  4. Eat 12 grapes at midnight. One for each month of the year. This brings more good luck for each month. 
  5. No bare cupboards when midnight strikes! Otherwise they’ll be bare all year long. No body wants that!
  6. Open all your doors and cupboards minutes before midnight. This one my husband’s good friend shared with us. By opening the doors and cupboards, it lets all the bad out from the previous year. 
  7. Make lots of noise! This ones my favorite! I remember as a kid being at my parent’s cabin, banging on pots and pans on the patio and my dad shooting off his gun! It was so much fun! Lol Some blow whistles, noise makers, and much more! The meaning behind this is to keep the evil spirits from entering your life in the coming year.
  8. Nothing goes out on the first day of the New Year. Trash can wait. Need to deliver presents or take a work bag with you? Load it in the car the night before. Taking things out New Years Day will mean you’ll be loosing things all year long. 
  9. This one I’m totally okay with! Don’t clean New Years Day! The superstition claims you’re cleaning away the good fortune for the up coming year. So the laundry, dishes, and chores can wait!!
  10. Eat pork New Years Eve and New Years Day! Pigs root forward when they eat, and we all want to move forward! Also, it’s rich fat content symbolizes wealth and prosperity. Avoid chicken because they peck at the ground and move backwards to eat meaning you’ll be living in the past. Avoid beef because they stay in the same spot while they eat meaning you’ll not move forward. 

There you have it! The superstitions our family do on New Years Eve and Mew Years Day! I would love to hear some of your you do as well!! 

The New Year means new beginnings, fresh starts, reaffirming love and promises for a brighter future. A new year is like a blank book, and the pen is in your hands. It is your chance to write a beautiful story for yourself. Wishing you alll a very happy and blessed New Year. I cannot wait to see what’s in store!

World Prematurity Day

Today is World Prematurity Day. Where we honor all those babies who were born too soon. Our precious Sofia Mae was born at 33 weeks 4 days. She spent 11 days in the NICU, hooked up to IVs, feeding tubes, and so much more. To not be able to hold your baby the second after she’s born because they have to rush her to the NICU was one of the most terrifying moments of my life. But due to the amazing research March of Dimes and others have put in to help stop premature births and deaths, my baby, as well as so many others, was able to come home! She’s now 3 1/2 years old, full of personality and spunk, happy, healthy… and perfect! 
I will never forget what we’ve gone thru to get this precious baby home, and will forever be grateful for all the help and support. 
So today! I wear purple in honor of my premie. I would love to see everyone support of World Prematurity Day! Please share if you’re wearing purple too! And I’ll post on my Facebook as the day goes on of the amazing support people (and cities!) show in honor of this day!

Our Newest Addition 

As some of you know, October 7, 2016 at 6:56pm, our family welcomed our beautiful baby boy Giovanni Michael. 


He’s beyond perfect. Such an easy baby. Always so calm, so relaxed, and so peaceful. One of the best parts of this little man entering our lives, is watching my girls with him. 

They are so madly in love with him. We have to fight to hold him! Unless there’s a poopy diaper, they are quick to give him up. LOL They sing to him, talk to him, tell him stories, just love him beyond measure! It’s been such an beautiful experience. 

Adjusting from a busy family of four to now an even busier family of five has actually been pretty smooth. I have the most amazing husband in the world who takes so much off my shoulders and has made this transition so easy. Of course, every day is a learning process. And learning to juggle everyday demands with now three children has been interesting. 

The house isn’t perfect, but the kids are happy, fed, and clean LOL. Laundry has been a little behind (I restart the dryer at least twice a day!), but we always have what we need, especially school and work clothes. Somehow, I’m able to get all three kids up, dressed, fed, and out the door with time to spare, all by myself might I add, to get our oldest to school. It’s a silly thing, but something I’ve been stressing over for 9+ months, so it feels great to be able to accomplish it!

I don’t know how to explain what I’ve been feeling… I’ve never felt so content, so complete, so blessed, like I do now. This newest addition to our family has made us complete. We all have a tighter bond than ever before. My heart couldn’t be more full. 

I cannot thank everyone enough who’s been there for our family throughout my entire pregnancy and this transition into becoming a family of five. Those who have helped us with our girls while we were at the hospital, helped us with meals the first week home, all the love and support. Our family couldn’t be happier and more blessed for everything and everyone in it. And thank you my amazing followers for allowing me to share with you or newest addition and the joy he has brought into our lives. 

So… Here’s to our new adventure. I do hope you’ll continue to follow us as we make it thru this crazy thing called life! It’s going to be a crazy adventure, but totally worth every minute of it. 

My Nautical Nursery

I’ve mentioned before how I LOVE anchors. I mean, I do call my blog the Anchor Mom. So, it’s no surprise I wanted to incorporate anchors into my baby boys nursery and baby shower (baby shower post will be later, so stay tuned!).

When I had Gabriella, we were in a rental. Then, I had Sofia, she came so early, I hadn’t even started thinking of how I wanted her room decorated, let alone even set up the crib! We were limited on the things we were able to do. Set the crib up, dresser, changing table, and hung curtains and some art work. Nothing fancy. Sofia, we just purchased our house (literally signed for our house while she was in the NICU), so we eventually were able to paint it how I wanted. But, besides paint and a few decorative pieces, even her nursery was more for function than design. 

I could have done way better with both nurseries. More thought and planning I could have done way more. I also think most of it was I never truly felt like it was our forever home or settled in a sense. I had a vision for Giovanni’s room long before I knew he was a boy! Anchors. It had to include anchors.  


This room was so much fun to do. Anyone who knows me knows I love interior design (wish I could make this a career or something!), but, you also know, I’m extremely frugal. I cannot justify spending $800 on bedding or $1200 for a stroller. Not knocking you if you do! It’s just not me. I love deals! Coupons, resale items, sales, any kind of deal! I’ll come back to this in a moment!

I wanted white furniture. Something about crisp white with the pale blue and gray is so calming to me. I stumbled onto this crib on Craigslist by accident! Perfect condition! AND came with a toddler conversion kit! Score!


It took me a long time to decide what to do above his crib. Walking thru Hobby Lobby, I found this oar. Was 50% off! Yes please! It is the right colors and went with my theme! I also found this anchor, which I painted navy and these boards, which I made into a sign and painted on “No Wake Zone”. Cute right? Again, deals! All wood products were 50% off! Triple score!


The bedding. At first, I just wanted a solid color, nothing fancy. But, while shopping at Babies R Us with a gift card we were given, I found this and the crib skirt. Both on CLEARANCE! 40% off original price. And it had anchors! 


This is by far my favorite corner in his room. Maybe cause I know I’ll be spending a lot of time here, between feeding and rocking Giovanni to sleep. 


This glider was given to me by an amazing friend who was clearing out things she wasn’t using anymore. It was originally a creamy color. We found this fabric at Hobby Lobby and was in love. And, again with the deals, I was able to use the 40% off coupon to buy it! Sewed it on the cushions and BAM! Brand new glider. 


I saw an idea like this on Pinterest. It’s so nautical, yet rustic, and you always need a shelf for knick knacks! Originally, we were going to make it, but I found it at Hobby Lobby for 50% off original price, which was less than what we could make it for! One thing I did pay full price for was the rope ties that hold the shelf up top. I made that little sailboat and letter “G”. The other knick knacks were either gifts or found online at online garage sale sites. 


His dresser was another find from an online garage sale site. We had to paint it white to match the other furniture and added monkey fist drawer pulls.

 

On top of his dresser, one of my favorite pieces in his nursery, the diaper boat! Eek! A good friend gave me this as a gift and I love it! I love having a place to put the diapers, while still adding a nice decoration piece to the room!


Changing table! I had fun with this little area! The changing table I found on an online garage sale site, super cheap! We needed to add shelves (thank God for my amazing husband). I made the “Poop Deck” sign, and printed the pictures from Pinterest (you can find so many different styles here!). The anchor towel and towel holder were also a gift!


More anchors! The changing table cover I found. I couldn’t resist. The beautiful crochet outfit was a gift from my amazing sissy from another missy! She also made the beautiful rug and another artwork you’ll see in just a second. 


Lastly, the wall by his closet. I made this sign in sheet for the baby shower, which everyone put their thumb print and signed their name on it. The little sign on it says “You are whaley loved, Giovanni Michael”. The artwork above my amazing dog made as well!

That’s his nursery! Only thing missing is baby Giovanni! Now, I must reveal that pain to, furniture, decor pieces, and everything costs us less than $300! It is possible to have your dream nursery or room with everything you could have ever wanted without breaking the bank! If you ever want help or ideas, please feel free to email me! I’d love to make your vision a reality! 

I hope you enjoyed viewing my baby boys nursery! I would love to hear what you think! 

Newest Project (thanks to my amazing husband!)

I love updating my house. Adding new charming decor pieces, adding more storage, making things more organized and functional. Everything and anything I can think!

There’s been one thing that has driven me crazy about my house. This strange knook. Since the moment we moved in, I knew I had to do something with it, but wasn’t sure exactly what. I came up with a million different ideas of what to do or how it could be functional. 

It’s only about 12″ deep (about the depth of a bookcase) and 43″ tall. 

I searched high and low for bookcase that would fit. All were too tall, too short, too deep, couldn’t find multiple of the same size and color. It felt like Goldilocks and the Three Bears. I thought about having a cabinet maker custom make a built in cabinet. But that was way too expensive. 

Then one day, while doing school work with Gabriella at the dining room table, it hit me. Let’s put a desk here!

I got to measuring, drawing diagrams, and looking for desks. No desk would fit the length. It would leave awkward spaces that no shelves would fill. Ugh. Back to square one. Until… LIGHTBULB! Let’s make a desk!

A standard desk and table is 30″ high, so I had to find something that was that size or a little shorter than that. I found bookcases for $60 or more. I needed two to make my vision work. I couldn’t justify spending that much. So, I kept looking. After looking and looking, I found two of the same bookcases on a garage sale site for $10 a piece! They were the right height, color (matched the bookcase I already have in the dining room!), and price! We jumped on them fast!

We got to work!

We put the two bookcases on the end of the knook. Love having more storage! Hubby cut a piece of wood to fit and painted it white. In the picture, you can see him adding a bracket to give the “desk” added support. 

Done!!


We need to get a chair for the desk, but other than that, it’s exactly what we wanted!

Tooth Fairy UPDATE!!

I posted recently about how my daughter had a loose tooth and we made a fun Tooth Fairy Bag. 

Well, last week, she lost her tooth! Yay!

She was so excited about it, as she should be! It’s crazy to me how fast she is growing up! I know, it’s just a tooth, but it’s also another stepping stone towards becoming this beautiful little lady.

Excitement after the tooth came out!

That means… TOOTH FAIRY TIME!

I think I was more excited about playing tooth fairy than her thinking the tooth fairy was coming. LOL Although, right after it fell out, she wanted to go straight to bed. 


The too the fairy gave her 5 $1 bills. I lightly sprayed with hairspray and sprinkled glitter on them. Yes, I know some think $5 may be a lot, but she deserved it. She is so good at sticking to her dental routine. Brushes at least twice a day, flosses every night, without fail. Plus, no cavities, ever! So, the tooth fairy rewarded her for all of her hard work. 


I found this cute certificate on Pinterest. Printed it on cardstock, added her name, and the date. 


Also, another amazing find on Pinterest. This adorable tooth fairy receipt (which the tooth fairy marked the wrong tooth 😧). There’s also a matching tooth record you can print to keep a record of what tooth was lost and when. Also found this cute letter from the tooth fairy. Both free printables that I printed on cardstock to make it more official!

How the tooth fairy displayed everything. The bag was under her pillow but we moved it to display it. 

Capture the Magic: had to capture this amazing moment!

I discovered this website last Christmas, Capture the Magic. For a small price, you can add the tooth fairy into a picture of your babe sleeping! I told her I have no idea how it got on my phone! She was shocked! Makes it so much more special!!


She was a very happy girl in the morning. I think, though she won’t admit it, she was hoping for a toy. But we were able to buy something she really wanted with her money. It took her three days and two trips to the store before deciding. LOL She decided on a Monster High blind bag and a Hello Kitty cup. 

We had so much fun playing tooth fairy! She has another loose tooth (the one right next to the one she lost) so it is just a matter of time before the tooth fairy makes another appearance. Won’t be as fancy as this, though. We’ll leave money and a receipt. Although, if a tooth is lost during Christmas time while our Elf is here, it may be made extra special somehow. We’ll have to wait and see!

Isn’t she so pretty?! Hehe

How have you played the tooth fairy?