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LifeProof 6plus Frē Case Review

** This review is my own honest opinion and I received no compensation to write this review.**

Do you have little ones always asking to play with your phone? I know I do, and I am always terrified that it will get broken. Not only is my child clumsy, but he gets it from me. I constantly drop my phone while I am using it. It is my rule that every time I get a new phone, I get a LifeProof case to go on it. These cases have never failed me, and trust me I put them to good use.

 

I order this case from Lifeproof directly. I was unsure which color to choose, as a few stood out to me. I previously had the Sunset Pink, but found that when I put it in my jeans pocket that it would discolor the pink rubber. Over time this lead to my case looking dingy and dirty.  I finally decided on the Banzai Blue case. I was pleasantly surprised at the color. It is bright and vibrant with a variation of a lighter and darker blue, and a splash of lime green. The colors go together very well, and I love it.

You can see the inside of the case has rubber gaskets and shock absorbers, to help make this case what it is. These cases are waterproof up to 6.6 feet for 1 hour and drop proof from heights of 6.6 feet, dirt proof and snow proof. I can attest to most of these, it doesn’t snow in Florida so I honestly can’t say how they do in snow. As for the waterproof features, I frequently take my phone to the beach, and the swimming pool and have taken my phone in the water in both places with no issues. A mom tip, if those sticky fingers get your phone you can easily rinse it off under the faucet with no worries of ruining your phone. The most important thing, once you receive your LifeProof case do the water test, before using it in or around water!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

My favorite feature of the LifeProof case is the fact that I can drop my case from 6.6 feet and my phone is still fine. Between my self and Chief, my phone gets dropped at least once a day if not more. Each time the phone hits the ground everyone around me cringes. I just shrug my shoulders and say don’t worry, its ok I have a LifeProof case.

The iPhone series is very well constructed, and is not bulky or a heavy addition to your phone. I have tried several other brands and they are much larger and heavier then my LifeProof. I recommend this case to all my friends, and they don’t only have cases for iPhones. They also have cases for Samsung, Motorola, LG, and Google phones. So there is a case for everyone.

To order your LifeProof case head over to their website and find the case that is a perfect match for you.  You can receive 5% cash back by using ebates when placing your order. If you do not have ebates, then sign up today and start receiving cash back on your purchases. Use this link (affiliated link) when registering and receive $10 cash back after you purchase $25 worth of qualifying products at hundreds of possible online stores.

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February is Heart Disease Awareness Month

February is Red Dress Month for Women, or Go Red for Women Month. It is sponsored by the American Heart Association, and helps inform women about the signs/symptoms of heart disease. Most of us know someone in our family who is affected by heart disease, or it may be you. In my family it is me, I have heart disease.

Did you know that women experience signs completely different then men when it comes it heart disease? Did you know that women will have symptoms of a heart attack that are drastically different then men? Do you know what those symptoms are? Well make sure you read our whole post, so you can find out.

My story of heart disease

Whew, who ever thinks that they are going to be diagnosed with heart disease? Definitely not me, never in a million year, especially not when I was just 20 years old. But, hey it happened and thanks to medical advancements I am here to tell you all about it.

When I was just 20 years old, I began experiencing fainting episodes. For no reason I would suddenly feel as if I were going to faint, and then I would wake up on the floor. Of course I called the doctor right away and got an appointment. They ran all the necessary blood work and everything came back clear. But, I was still experiencing these fainting episodes.  One time I was on vacation from college visiting my family, on my drive home I began to feel light headed so I pulled into a rest stop. Twenty minutes later I woke up, and had no idea where I was or what happened. I called my doctor and scheduled another appointment. Before my appointment I fainted again after getting out of the shower and fractured my wrist. This was it, I had enough.

I went to my doctor and demanded that he find out what was wrong with me. He said there was one last test he wanted to run, but expected it to come back clear as well.  The test he wanted to run was called a Tilt Table test. It was just as it sounds, I was strapped to a table and it tilted at an 80 degree angle which would induce stress that causes fainting. 15 minutes into my test I passed out, when I came to I remember hearing the nurses yelling at me but couldn’t understand what was happening.

The Diagnosis

After what seemed like the longest time of my life I finally had an answer. It was something I never expected to hear. A cardiologist came into my room and very bluntly told me that I needed a pacemaker or I was going to die. I had a 15 second pause in my heart rate during my test. I panicked, pure fear coursed through my body as she left the room and left me with her physicians assistant. My first thought was to call my daddy, he would know what to do. Any parent can tell you that getting a phone call from your hysterical child saying they need heart surgery is absolutely terrifying.

I was diagnosed with Neurocardiogenic Syncope and Sick Sinus Syndrome. In simple terms my heart  slows down so much that I pass out and my hearts natural pacemaker doesn’t work properly. We had several opinions after the initial diagnosis all confirming what the first Cardiologist said. Although one doctor did agree to try medication first. Being that I was only 20 years old at the time, we went with this option. Several months later I was still having issues, symptoms, fainting and I had enough. After fainting why working, I was transported by ambulance to the hospital where I made the final decision to have the surgery to place the pacemaker.

The Recovery

The down side to having a pacemaker placed is that you lose the use of your left arm for six weeks as the scar tissue grows around the leads placed in your heart. You are prevented from lifting your arm above your head, pushing, pulling, lifting etc. Not the easiest that’s for sure.

I started to feel semi normal again after a few weeks. It was a painful surgery as they make a pocket in your chest muscles for the pacemaker.  The fainting was getting better, we had to find the perfect settings for my pacemaker and it took a bit of time to get them perfect. But once they did, it was awesome. I was able to start living my life again with out the fear of passing out. 

Luckily for me I made a full recovery after my surgery and live a happy 9 years with my pacemaker. It wasn’t without it’s ups and downs, I had problems a few times but they were easily corrected with adjusting my pacemaker settings. The battery life varies on your pacemaker based on the frequency of use. My battery lasted 9 years, and was replaced on 1/31/2017.  Boy did I forget just how painful this surgery could be, haha. This time around I don’t have as many limitations, but I do have some. Like no lifting, keeping it clean and dry to avoid infection. The struggles I face, as taking care of my little guy, cleaning house, cooking, everyday normal tasks. But heres hoping I don’t need surgery for several more year.

Are you at risk for heart disease?

Does heart disease run in your family? Yes, no, or you don’t know? If you don’t know, then ask. It is very important to know your medical history. Do you know the signs and symptoms of a heart attack?  Well, lets find out together.

First thing first, schedule a well woman visit with your primary care doctor. Have them check your blood pressure, and Body Mass Index. Schedule blood work to find out your total cholesterol, HDL cholesterol and blood sugar. Speak with your doctor about any family history regarding heart disease. If you have a higher risk of heart disease, consider scheduling an appointment with a cardiologist for a check up. What can it hurt, sure there is your copay, deductible and taking time out of your day. But what if I told you that making that appointment could save your life one day. Are you willing to schedule it now? You can download and take this risk factor quiz and bring it with you to your health care check up.

Signs and Symptoms of a Heart Attack

According to the American Heart Association these are the signs and symptoms of a heart attack in women.

  • Uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain in the center of your chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or goes away and comes back.
  • Pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • Shortness of breath, with or without chest discomfort.
  • Other signs such as breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.
  • As with men, the most common heart attack symptom in women is chest pain or discomfort. But it’s important to note that women are more likely to experience the other common symptoms, particularly shortness of breath, nausea/vomiting and back or jaw pain.

If you or someone you love is experiencing symptoms of a heart attack, it is VERY important that you follow these steps.

  • Do not wait to call for help. Dial 9-1-1, make sure to follow the operator’s instructions and get to a hospital right away.
  • Do not drive yourself or have someone drive you to the hospital unless you have no other choice.
  • Try to stay as calm as possible and take deep, slow breaths while you wait for the emergency responders.

Always remember one thing. Heart disease does not care if you are 20 or 75, it can strike at any time. Make your self aware of the signs and symptoms to help save your life, or the life of someone you know and love.

❤️Brittny

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Are you being the best mom?

Do you feel like you ask your self this questions frequently? Are you being the best mom? What does being the best mom entail?

I personally believe that everyone is being the best mom. We are constantly fighting with each other to see who can out do who. We are in constant competition to see who’s kids can wear the nicest clothes, have the nicest shoes, who has the most friends over at a play day. Let me tell you, this is absolutely tiring! I do my best not to be this kind of person, but it is easy to fall into the trap.

Are you ready to hear it?

YOU ARE THE BEST MOM! You rock the socks off those little people in your life. They don’t care if their socks match, or if their shirt has a little stain on it. They will NEVER notice if those clothes you got them came from a second hand store. Kids won’t notice if there are 3 people at their play date, but 7 people at Johnny’s play date.

Our children are only worried about one thing. That one thing is unconditional love from their family. They care about the hugs, kisses, cuddles, laughs and memories they are making with you. It is hard for us as parents to see that this is enough for them.

So be the best mom that is right for you. Don’t mold your self to fit someone else’s stands of what the best mom is. Only we can make that choice for your self. The stress of being perfect is real, it can  really cause some serious issues in our lives. Be true to your selfs and feel the stress wash away.

Remind your self of these things

  1. I am the best mom for my family.
  2. I am not perfect and that is OK.
  3. I will not compete with my fellow moms to out do one another.
  4. I love my children unconditionally and that is all that matters.

If you have friends in your life who don’t believe in these 4 key things, then you might want to rethink your friendship. I am not saying you have to cut them out of your life completely, but maybe limit your interaction to play dates only. Being around people who only believe in outdoing each other can be very damaging to our self esteem. You don’t need that. There are tuns of other moms at the play ground who feel the same way as you. Some as just afraid to admit it, as they don’t want to be seen as “outcast” per say.

Motherhood is not perfect, I am not perfect, and my child is far from perfect. ButI am the best mom to my family and that is all they care about.

Hang tight momma’s we got this together. It truly takes a village to raise our children. We might as well make it a village filled with the Best Moms, and that means all of you. Be kind, stay strong, believe in your selves.

❤️ Brittny

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Chief’s Firefighter Birthday Party

Wow! Has it really been 4 years since my little firefighter was born?! I can’t believe that the years have flown by so fast. This year he was finally old enough to really understand what it meant to have a birthday and a birthday party. This made the anticipation of both great.

Chief was born 3.5 weeks early on New Years Eve. This makes having a birthday party on his actual birthday difficult. It’s only 6 days after Christmas and everyone typically has plans on New Years Eve. For the past 3 years and this year included we did something special with him all on his own. I think this makes his actual birthday special and then he is able to have his birthday party with his friends and the rest of our family.

By the end of it we usually have about 3 celebrations for him. This year we did dinner, dessert and he got to go to the store and pick our a new toy on his actual birthday. Then on January 1st, we drove up to St. Augustine, FL to visit our friends Gary and Michelle for lunch and dessert at Burger Buckets(if you have never been, you must go!). Then on January 7th, we had his firefighter birthday party with friends and family.

Firefighter Decorations

I have never been a fan of store bought decorations. They are VERY expensive, cheap, and every child has the same thing. I want Chief’s birthday to be unique. Each year since he was born I have hand made the decorations for his party and each year the get better. I am a super crafty person, and Pinterest is my best friend.

This year we choose the firefighter theme. Chief is currently obsessed with firemen, firetrucks, his bunker gear, and everything it means to be a firefighter. This made things pretty easy because we have already began to combine his living space to reflect this.

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Using the Cricut Explore One

All of our decorations were hand made by my self, with little help from my husband. I also made the majority of the party favors for the kids.  I did all this with my Cricut Explore One machine.  It does so much, and is so great for parents with children. Not only can you use it for party decorations, but you can use it for scrapbooking, home decor, holiday decor and so much more.

I started out by cutting out flames using bright colored card stock paper. I mainly stuck with the colors orange, red, yellow and black for our decorations and favors. Along with my Cricut machine I have a monthly membership to Access, with is very reasonable at $9.99 a month and has thousand of images and fonts included! I used my access membership to search for a flame file that I liked, uploaded it to design space and sized it to what I needed. I got 3 flames per sheet of 8.5x11in paper.

Firefighter Games

We had a fun obstacle course planned for the kids to enjoy. Sadly the night before the party we were under a severe storm warning and experienced thunderstorms through out the night and early morning. This storm also brought through a cold front and it was 38 degrees outside. While the severe storms are typical for Florida the 38 degrees of wetness is not. So we modified things and stuck to indoor fun.

My husband helped make my idea of a burning building come to life. We used a roll of brick backdrop from Hobby Lobby and flame cutouts that I made with the circuit.  The kids were able to use blue bean bags that simulated water to try and put out the fire. We originally planned to use water balloons, but of course that would not have been good indoors.

Eventually the children went outside to enjoy some fun as the sun made a brief appearance. They had fun playing, riding Chief’s John Deere Gator, and playing football. They did not miss the obstacle course one bit. I think I was more upset about it then they were, haha.

At the end of the day, Chief didn’t care about the decorations, the games, the food, or the gifts. He cared only about spending time with his friends and family. I am just happy that our little boy enjoyed his day! Even if he ate 4 cupcakes, and was hyper the rest of the day.

Do you make your own decorations for birthday parties, or do you buy pre-made items? Answer below in the comments.

❤️Brittny

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Coolit Plate Review

Do you struggle with screaming kids at dinner time? I can’t eat this mommy, its too hot! Mommy, blow on my spaghetti! Mom, it’s like lava(my husband grew up saying this)! Mom, it burned my tongue! Well, it’s finally here! A product to help with this task in the quickest way possible. No more sticking it in the freezer for what seems like a life time to your 4 year old, but is really only 5 minutes who then take this time to throw a fit and roll all over the kitchen floor.

So this Christmas my sister-in- law got me a Coolit plate. I opened it and thought, how cool could this really be?(Pun intended) So I gave it a wash and plopped it in the freezer. The recommended freeze time before use is 4 hours. Not so bad considering it was late morning when I added it to the freezer. It would be ready in time for dinner.

                                                  

The Coolest Product out there

The Coolit, is a 2″x8″ dish that holds about a cup of food, and cools food in approximately one minute. This product is made by two loving parents, who have two littles of their own and have experience with dinner time melt downs. 

WOW! Can I say that I am AMAZED at how COOL this product is! Seriously! The first meal I used it for was Spaghetti. I figured it would cool quickly, and be ready for the table in seconds. Chief had been all over me in the kitchen wanting to know when his noodles would be done because he was starving. No mention of the fact he ate a snack 15 minutes before I started cooking. 

After many uses I decided to try it the other night when I made beef stew in our Instant Pressure Cooker. I took the soup straight from the pot practically still boiling and placed it in the bowl. Within the first minute the broth was cool enough to eat, but the meat and veggies were still fairly hot. I Poured the broth into a bowl and chopped up the veggies and meat a tad smaller and they cooled within the second minute. Afterwards though the bowl was not cool enough to cool another meal.

I have noticed that with some meals such as pastas, meats, and veggies, that you can get at least two servings out of one Coolit plate, but when used with the hot soup I was only able to get one serving. If you have more then 2 little kids, or plan to use it frequently on soups I would recommend you get more then one Coolit plate.

   

Directions for Coolit

The Coolit is seriously easy to use. There are 4 steps to the Coolit process.

  1. Wash Coolit before first use and place in the freeze for at least 4 hours before use.
  2. Place hot foods on frozen Coolit(cut larger pieces into smaller chunks)
  3. Stir for approximately 1 minute or until cool.
  4. Test food to make sure it is at a good temperature, and transfer to plate.

Seriously, that’s it! Time for dinner!

Overall, I really recommend this product. I wish I had know about it sooner, it would have helped with meal time as we usually had to place Chief’s dinner in the freezer for 5 minutes before it was cool enough to eat.

If you would like to order this product or find more information about this product, you can find it here. This review is my own personal opinion and I was not provided anything as compensation to write this review.

❤️Brittny

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New Year, New Adventures

Have you decided what your new years resolution will be? This year I have decided that I am not going to make a resolution. I tend to just break it within a few weeks anyways. So, I have decided to do something else. This year we are working towards more adventures, lots of family fun, and new journeys.

First thing of the New Year

We are starting off this year right! With Chief’s birthday on New Years Eve, it makes it a bit tough to celebrate officially. We always schedule his birthday for the first weekend in January, giving his friends time to return from Christmas vacations and any other holiday celebrations.

We are planning a firefighter themed birthday celebration, since Chief LOVES anything firefighter related. I am super excited that I am able to hand make almost all of his birthday decorations this year. It really helps save on the cost of party decorations. Here is a little sneak peak at what we have finished so far.  I am super excited to see it all come together.

 

 

 

 

 

Saving for our Adventure

Wow! It’s finally January and we are just 4 short months away from taking our big adventure to Michigan. We are so excited to go up and visit the town that we will possibly be moving to. This is going to be one of the biggest decision of our lives and we are not taking it lightly.

I have done an EXTREME amount of research into the area, town, medical facilities, jobs, etc. So far everything I have found points to this area being the perfect place for our family. It is a small town in Northern Michigan, we will be able to have a little hobby farm, hopefully a little veggie garden and lots of land! The land is the best part! Being on 10 acres, with so much beautiful wildlife around will lead to many many adventures with Chief.

Now, if only we can catch a break and finally be able to stop pulling from our savings. At the beginning of December my transmission blew in my car and will cost $3,500.00 to fix it! At this point we are looking at just giving up and getting a newer car, as mine is already 14 years old.

Family Adventures

This is my favorite part! 2016, was a VERY tough year on our family. With the loss of my grandma, the loss of my husbands grandfather, losing my job, medical issues, family issues, and so much more. I am looking to make a HUGE change with 2017! I want to make this year a very memorable year for Chief in a good way.

It is my goal that we take at least 1 adventure each month. 12 adventures this year, 12 amazing family memories, 12 happy times. I don’t know yet what our first adventure will be, but I know it will be a good one. Maybe we will take a day trip to one of our state parks. Chief loves to run around in the woods and have fun. At least once this year I want to plan a family camping event, weather we go someone local, or somewhere further away, I want Chief to have the opportunity to camp the way I use to as a young child.

Everyone should have family adventures. I challenge you to have at least 1 family adventure a month. It doesn’t have to be anything expensive, or outlandish. It can be done locally, with minimal funds, as long as you are doing something fun together. Make sure to leave a comment, let me know what your adventure was and how it went. The only thing I as is that you do something outdoors, get away from the electronics and have fun!

Have fun, be adventurous, get outdoors, and be a family!

❤️Brittny

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Dollar Tree Wonders!

Have you heard about Dollar Tree? Have you ever been inside? I highly recommend you take a trip there as soon as possible.

 

Dollar Tree Snacks

Let’s talk about snacks. Every mom knows that kids go through snacks like they do underwear. They seem to go even faster right after you buy them and the novelty of new snacks is there.

Every week I head over to the Dollar Tree with a $10 budget for snacks. Every Dollar Tree varies on the items they have, and they also vary by week. But I am guaranteed to find good name brand stuff every time. The best part, it’s all a buck! That’s right, $1! No funny business.

Our favorite snacks are veggie straws, chocolate animal crackers, goldfish, cheese puffs, pretzels, and much more. We have even gotten lucky on occasion and found applesauce pouches! I try and buy the largest bags possible, and then I get snack size baggies and separate it all out. I have a snack bin in my pantry that is accessible to my 3 year old and he can pick and choose own his own.

Dollar Tree Dry Goods

Who would have thought that Dollar Tree has a dry grocery and frozen section?! It is AMAZING! Again, name brand items at bargain prices. Of course you still have store brand items, but they are just as good.

Canned Veggies, Canned Soup, Canned Fruit, Tuna, and much more. You can’t forget the pastas, pasta sauces, condiments, sodas and juices. I always take advantage of these items when I find them. These are all house hold staples that everyone has in their pantry, and it’s great to stock up.  During our most recent Hurricane, I was even able to stock up on non perishable items at a low price, and a very small budget.

Now, always make sure to check your local sale prices as some times you can get an even better deal at your local grocery store. But in most cases you get a better deal at the Dollar Tree.

Dollar Tree Frozen Foods

This section is hit or miss. You can find great things, and not so great things. Its also the area you have to watch the prices on, because its possible that they could cost more. Chief loves Red Barron Pizza Minis. I can purchase them in the grocery store for $3.79 for a box of 8 mini pizza’s, Chief usually only eats 3 of them. At Dollar Tree I can get 1 package of 3 for $1 and get 9 for $3.

This section seems to be the most random, but you can find some really good things here. My favorite find has been the Cinnabon pull apart. These make great snacks for moms after a long stressful day, and cook in 45 seconds!

Dollar Tree School Supplies

Every homeschooling parent knows just how expensive supplies can be. this burden is completely on us, as we are the educators in our classroom. This gives me an appreciation for them as they are only given a small list of supplies and they have to close the gap.

Dollar Tree is where its at when it comes to homeschool supplies on a budget. Paper, pencils, pens, dry erase markers, flash cards, arts and crafts materials, the works. At the beginning of the school year they even carry workbooks for all grade levels. I have found that these are a great supplement to our curriculum, or great to use when traveling.

If you have a younger child, they have great classroom decorations. Our classroom take a more Montessori approach and I don’t use the items. But they would work for a pre-k, or kindergarten student.

Holiday Dollar Finds

Are you looking to decorate for the holidays on a budget? Head over to Dollar Tree to find the latest holiday offerings. We were able to score some awesome Halloween, and Christmas decorations so far this year. This really helped when Chief wanted to decorate, but we had a very minimal budget.

 

Over all, Dollar Tree has TUNS to offer! The biggest plus, EVERYTHING is truly $1! Happy Shopping!

 

❤️Brittny

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Our Year In Review

Wow! Is the year already coming to an end? We have 10 more days until 2017, and I am so not ready. The end of the year also signifies that Chief will be another year older. His birthday is December 31st, so we always celebrate with a bang.

The Good Times

This year we started our official home school journey. It came on suddenly, but it was so worth it. To say that it has been easy, without challenges, and non stressful would be a lie. It has been one of the hardest, challenge filled, stressful times, but watching my sons face light up with joy when he finally understands something is worth it all.

Practice Writing

This year we also reunited with part of my husbands family who we hadn’t spoken to in almost 5 years. While this was odd at first, and still can be, I am so grateful that it happened. Family has and always will be important to me and it has always broken my heart that my son had cousins and grandparents out there that he had never met.

The best part of this year had to be my husband relocating for work. He now works about 10 minutes from home, and this is so much better for our family. Before it would take him about 45 minutes to get home. That 45 minutes could be a make or break it to be home in time to say goodnight to Chief before he fell asleep. We can now visit him for Lunch at work if we would like to, which helps for nights where he might be working late.

The Bad Times

Wow, where to start. I feel like this year has been filled with more bad times than anything. It has been one of my most challenging years ever. I could have never expected the heartache, pure grief and anger that I experienced.

In March after months of complaining, my grandmother was diagnosed with terminal cancer. That day I took her into the emergency room, I never expected to walk out making plans for the rest of her life. I expected her to live another 10 years at least. In July things got much worse. It was time for her to move in with us and receive full-time hospice care at home. Less then 3 weeks later we were saying our last goodbyes. Her loss was the hardest thing I have been through in at least the last 15 years. I still have days where I expect her to call, or pure grief overtime I look at my Christmas tree and I know in 3 days she won’t be sitting down for Christmas Brunch. But, I am comforted in knowing that she is in a better place and no longer in pain.

Hugs for Great Grandma ❤️

In August we reunited with part of my husbands family. Unfortunately this reunion came on terrible terms. His grandfather had been battling cancer for sometime, and received news that he now had a new kind. We started to make time to go over there and see them. Chief had been going over there for a few months with his Papa to visit, and for that I am grateful. No one expected what came next. In September he went into the hospital and they gave him the terrible news that the cancer had spread at lighting speed and he had days to live. Here we are FINALLY back together as a family and now we are losing grandpa too. He passed at the end of September in the care of the same Hospice team that cared for my grandma.

Dealing with both these losses put such an emotional weight on my shoulders. Here I was not even remotely over the loss of my grandma and having to explain her loss to Chief, but here I am having to explain to him the loss of his grandpa just months later. Just way to much loss in such a short time for such a young child.

Getting Better

Here we are, the year is finally coming to an end. We are 3 days away from Christmas, and 9 days away from Chief’s 4th Birthday! I still can’t believe that he is going to be 4 years old. I look back at my Facebook memories and 4 years ago I was on bed rest trying to keep this stubborn little boy inside for just a few more weeks, now I am putting together his birthday party.

We are going to celebrate these last few days with pure joy. This year has taught me one thing. To be thankful for everything, take nothing for granted, and to live for your self and not others. I have learned that no matter you take adventures,  have fun, love unconditionally, have faith, and do what makes you happy.

So with all this said, we are living for our selfs. We are taking the steps to a fantastic family adventure. We are moving across the country from Florida to Michigan. For now we celebrate Christmas, celebrate Chief’s birthday and the new year, and then we put our house on the market and cross our fingers that it sells quickly.

How did your year end? What were the good times? The bad times? Are they finally starting to look up?

 

Merry Christmas🎄 and Happy Holidays

❤️Brittny

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Arctic Adventures Part 2

Welcome to our Arctic Adventures Part 2. We have been working with our arctic materials for a little over a month now, and chief loves them. If you have not read Part One of our adventures you can find it here.

Blubber Experiment

This was our most anticipated experiment on our Arctic Adventure. Chief and I went through his arctic animals and spoke about how they kept warm during the cold winter months. He thought that his whales would be the coldest because they live in cold water.

We went through his arctic animals and talked about how we thought they stayed warm. Of course as a 3 year old he came up with funny things like, they sleep with their mommy, they buy a sweater, they move where it is warm like Florida, etc.

Now, the best part. We did our blubber experiment and here is how it went, and what we discovered.

  • First, we filled a bowl with cold water and Chief put in his bare hands to see just how old the water is without the protection of blubber.
  • Then we put on gloves(this part is a must) to help keep our hands clean, and then I covered his hand with cooking lard. You can use Crisco, but I found that Target carried an off brand box for only $1.89 so I went with that since we would just be throwing it away.
  • Once his hand was ready, he slowly submerged his hand into the icy water. He was pretty shocked that his had was not getting cold.
  • Next, he placed his bare hand and his “blubber” hand into the cold water and told me which one was warmer. He thought this part was really cool, because to him they were the same hand. I explained to him that it was the “blubber”, like on the Polar Bear that was keeping his hand warm.
  • He played around with the water and “blubber” for a few minutes, but then our “blubber” started to fall off. I highly recommend that you wrap your hand in plastic wrap to keep the “blubber” in place.

This was a super fun and inexpensive experiment to do with him. I am always looking for hands on learning to help enhance his school days, and make things more fun.

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Arctic Flash Cards

In Part One of our Arctic Adventures I expressed my love you Safari Toob Animals. Using out Arctic toob animals I created flash cards that help with recognition, and matching.  We can use these cards to help with reading as Chief gets older.

Creating the flash cards was super simple. Using a light box with a white background I took clear pictures of each animal. I uploaded each picture into Microsoft Word and formatted the picture to the size desired. I made our card 4inx6in to make them easy to handle.

Snow Slime

We made our snow slime back in Part One. While it has lasted us for about 5 uses, it did start to turn back into a liquid state. We dumped some of the liquid out, remixed it and it was good as new.

This is one of Chief’s favorite activities, most likely because it seems messy and he can be really hands on with it. His favorite thing is to pretend that his whales, and walrus are swimming in the ocean looking for food.

 

❤️ Brittny

P.S. If you liked this, don’t forget to share with your friends and family.

 

 

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Baking Christmas Cookies

It’s that time of year, time to bake Christmas Cookies. We invited Chief’s best friend Hadley Girl over to join us and they had a blast.

Our Recipes

We didn’t do anything to crazy, I use a Chewy Sugar Cookie Recipe I found while googling. It was super duper simple and easy to make. The longest part was waiting for the dough to get cold so we could roll it out and cut them into shapes with the cookie cutters.

I also made my own version of homemade butter cream frosting. It is so easy to make and taste so much better then store bought frosting. Here is the recipe for that.

Buttercream Frosting

1 stick of softened butter (Not melted)

1 cup of powdered sugar

1-2 teaspoons of Vanilla Extract (Depending on how much vanilla you like)

1-2 tablespoons of Milk

Food Coloring Gel (Optional)

Cream your butter till it is a smooth consistency about 1 minute, add Vanilla extract and mix. Then add in 1/2 cup powdered sugar mixing until combined, add in the other 1/2 cup of powdered sugar. This is where you will see the need for the milk. Add in 1 tablespoon first and mix, adding more milk as needed until you get the consistency you desire.  Add in food coloring gel and mix till you reach the desired color (Optional).

Refrigerate after making.

Mixing our dough

The kids had a blast with this. I remeasured the dry ingredients so they could help pour them into the mixer, and to help keep the mess to a minimum. Chief cracked the egg and was super proud. This is a task we have been working on for about a year now, and he seems to have it mastered.

After mixing our dough we rolled it up in some plastic and put it in the freezer to get cold and solid. This step is super important to prevent your dough from spreading out while baking. While it was freezing the mom’s make some of their own secret peppermint bark to hide for later(Recipe below)

Cutting our Cookies

By the time we reached this step the kids were bored and didn’t want anything to do with us anymore. Typical for 3 year olds. They found the play dough and were happily making their own creations in the classroom.

I sprinkled flour onto a wooden cutting board, and rolled out the dough to be about 1/4 inch thick. We used traditional cookie cutters, the snowman, stocking, gingerbread boy and girl, and christmas trees. Because they were only about 1/4 inch thick they baked in about 10 minutes.

 

Decorating our Cookies

Finally! The time came. They were out of the oven, flash cooled (Put in the freezer for 10 minutes) and ready to decorate. We called in the kids from the play room, got them washed up and they sat at the table ready to create their masterpiece cookies.

I placed out our homemade buttercream frosting, that I split into 3 containers and dyed red, green, and I left one white.They also got a small cup of sprinkles, because lets be real no child should have a full bottle of sprinkles, hahaha.

We had green teeth, red teeth, and sugar rushes galore. But we had two very happy children. It didn’t take long after they decorated the cookies for them to devour the frosting off, and eat their cookies.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Baking cookies has always been a Christmas tradition in my family and is one that I want to keep going with Chief. Being that part of our family is a few hundred miles away, we invited our best friends who have become our family to join us for this special day. I can’t be any happier with how the day went, and the time that we got to spend with Hadley Girl, baby Squish and Momma Nikki.

These days show me that you don’t have to be blood related to be a family. You can create family traditions with anyone, and make them special. Plus, Nikki and I use any excuse we can to get together and have some mom time ❤️.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!

-Brittny 🎅🏽🎄❤️