Thursday, December 29, 2011

{Our boy}

December 15 - 16, 2011

The next two days of Reid Andrew's life were spent with a whirlwind of emotions. Our boy...our precious, beautiful baby boy was here! And seriously...he was the epitome of beautiful. Full, soft, dark brown hair....just like his sister. Perfectly smooth, ivory skin. The most adorable little nose in the whole world and even his crooked little feet (Reid had bilateral clubfeet which is what started us on this journey back in September) were perfect. Ten toes, ten fingers....he was tiny but he was perfect.

However, to go with our joy was the overwhelming worry and concern. Our worst nightmare was happening. We were allowed to touch him but he was hooked up to so many machines and his temperature was not stable so holding him was completely out of the question. We weren't even able to kiss him. So we spent the days just laying our hands on his beautiful head or chest...letting him know we were there with him.

One big concern (besides the obvious of his lungs not working) was that his bladder was really,h really full. We found this out via ultrasound at the beginning of November when I was first admitted to the hospital. We knew he was producing urine and releasing it because a) I had polyhydramnios and b) we saw him release it on ultrasound however we also knew that a babies bladder should not be as large as his was. He urinated immediately after he was born but it wasn't until early Friday morning that he would urinate again a gigantic 150 ml (trust me that's a lot for a baby). We were meeting with every specialist under the sun one of which was Reid's urologist. He felt that Reid must have a posterior valve (which is not supposed to be there). After multiple attempts by nurses and by his urologist to pass a catheter it was determined that he needed to have surgery. That if this continued he would not only be in pain from the filling of his bladder but it would also continue to cause a slew of other problems. So surgery was scheduled for the next day.

Surgery??? On my baby??? How could this be. I am 27 years old and up until December 14 of this year I had never even had surgery. We knew this was what was best for him, though. Each doctor we met with explained the need and offered us the reassurance that this was what was best for our boy.

We took vigil as our boy grew sicker and sicker. We listened as each doctor tried to come up with what was causing all this. We watched as they attempted to place an IV line again and again and again. He even had to receive his first haircut and let me just tell you...nurses are not very good at haircuts. He ended up with two shaved spots on the sides of his head, 9 attempts at placing an IV and eventually a little burn to the side of his head after one of the IV's infiltrated. Finally, Friday night they were able to place a PICC line into his right arm but that was only the beginning.

One of the only things I could think about through all of this was how much I longed to just hold him...I wanted him in my arms...I wanted to take away all of his pain. All of his suffering. Watching your baby lie in his little home and feeling helpless as his mommy is one of the most painful experiences in the world. It just all seemed surreal...Like I was literally just dreaming. The only thing that brought me back to reality was the pain. The pain in my abdomen and the pain in my heart. It was what let me know that this wasn't a dream but it was my life. Our life.

Our life. Our perfect, little, nightmarish life.

Monday, December 26, 2011

{Our boy}: Our families life

So many have been curious about our families story and before I forget all the details I thought I would share. It will be long as the last few months have been filled with more then I ever thought imaginable but I would like a way to look back and one day share with our daughter her baby brothers story. So I will start here...

December 14, 2011.

I was 35 weeks and 5 days pregnant. I started out the day the way most of my days have started out over the past few months. Preparing for a doctors appointment. This particular appointment was to be my 4th in a matter of six days and was with my perinatologist. I think both Ian and I knew that today would be the day. The day that we would see our sweet son's face. With all the anxiety over the last few months of the health of our boy we were so excited yet so scared.

As we arrived at the hospital we began to explain our whole history, one in which we have become accustomed to explaining, to the nurses in the labor and delivery department as well as giving my general OB an "update." We knew we would be headed for the OR as my perinatologist felt a natural delivery would be to stressful for our boys wee body. We had a nurse, who must not have really understood the delicacy of Reid's life, try to convince me that a natural delivery (OK not exactly natural but induced) would be what was best for our boy but we knew otherwise. As I walked into the OR I have never felt more helpless in my life. I knew that there was not much more I could do at this point except for to pray. So that is what I did.

After being situated on the table they brought my ever loving husband in to be by my side. The delivery itself was rather intense. You see they were unable at first to get Reid out. He had apparently found a nice comfy home and was well....stuck. Ian and I were really unsure of what to think as my body was pulled and tugged and pushed on as hard as possible to deliver our baby boy. One of the nurses used my husbands phone to snap a couple of photos of Reid before he was passed through the "window" into the NICU. I knew in my mind with the lack of crying and the photos that I saw that it was not as we hoped but my heart continued to pray for our boy that God would give us but a moment to be with him.

As we waited in the recovery room for Reid's neonatoligist and the minutes slowly ticked by I realized that all the unknowns of the last few months were turning into our worst nightmare. Finally, after a little over an hour Reid's doctor and one of the most amazing ladies in the whole world (I will refer to her as my guardian angel) came to my bedside to speak to us. What they told us can be summed up into "not looking good." They were both very concerned for Reid and were unsure if he would survive at this point. I longed to just hold my boy. To see his face, his tiny hands, his precious feet.

Finally, I was considered recovered enough and they wheeled me through the NICU. The first time I saw Reid was one of the most proudest yet most frightened moments in my life. My baby, all 3 pounds and 13 ounces, was living with the support of machines. He was not breathing on his own at all. That first meeting with my boy was one I will hold with me forever. He decided it was a perfect time to open his eyes and look right at me. I feel blessed because my family was able to snap a photo of this precious moment for me. I know God was watching down knowing that in the coming weeks and months and probably years I will need that moment to remember how grateful I am...and will always be for Reid's little life.

My husband and I along with our parents spent the rest of the night waiting for the sensation in my legs to return so that I could be wheeled to the NICU to spend time with our baby...our angel. We spent the rest of the night watching over our boy while trying to rest some since both of our bodies had been through more emotional stress in just a few short hours than I'm certain either of us has experienced in our entire lives.

We didn't know it at that time but we would only have a few short days with our baby. I blindly assumed and hoped that we would just be like lots of NICU mommies and daddies....trying to balance our home life with the life of our new baby. What was to come over the next few days has definitely changed our lives and we can only hope that because of it we will be better people...better parents for our girl while here on earth...better people to all of those who love us and better people for anyone who we might meet along our journey here on earth.

Celebrating Christmas without our precious boy was hard...knowing he will never have a first Christmas here on earth with us was even harder. But knowing that he spent his first Christmas with Jesus celebrating is comforting.

From our family to yours we hope you have had a very blessed and happy holiday season.

Friday, December 9, 2011


*This is a personal post. No tutorials here. Just a desperate plea for prayers :) And I wanted to add too that we are hopefully all is ok but there are many many unknowns. *


Life has a funny way of throwing you a curve ball just when you think you have it all figured out.

My life.

My life changed in so many ways on September 2, 2011.

September 2, 2011 was the day my pregnancy went from nothing to worry about to high risk. It was only the beginning.

Since that day I have learned many things and especially over the last month I have learned that and always has been in the hands of God. Sure I make decisions every single day but he is the one guiding me. I have learned that the "control" that I thought I had is meaningless. I have learned that no matter what I do I cannot go back to before September 2 and make things perfect again.

One day I will share with you all what has been going on but quite frankly I am just not ready. And I am mostly not ready because well we have no answers. We aren't really sure how our sweet baby boy is. And our doctors really aren't sure either. What we are sure of is that God has lead us down a path...down a path for us to learn...for us to be humbled by. We are sure that we are loved...that our daughter and our sweet boy have so many who love them so very much. We are sure that without our loved ones we would not be where we are right now.

I write this now in hopes that if you have any extra time in your day (and I know how busy this time of year is) but I ask that you pray for our boy. Pray that he is strong and healthy and that he lives a long, exciting life. That our children can grow up playing with one another...enjoy each others company...and enjoy that special bond that only siblings understand. I know it is a big request but as we near the end it has become more real and I strongly believe in the power of prayer. I believe that God listens to each and everyone of us and I believe that he will do what is best.

For everyone who has already been praying...for all the phone calls, texts, emails, meals and love that we have received over this time...I am forever in debt to you. Although I hope that no one else has to experience this I hope that we are able to repay everyone some how.

I pray.

Friday, October 14, 2011

{Hair Detangler}: Make your own

So the girl has gorgeous hair....beautiful, long, perfect layers and oh so soft. But after a bath or after sleeping her hair typically looks like the image above. Combine that with a squirmy toddler and it is a recipe for disaster 

I have thought about buying detangler at the store many times but I usually forget and then remember come bath time that I was supposed to make that oh so important purchase.

So I decided to make my own and do you want to know the best part about it? It was FREE! Yeah!

I had a left over spray bottle from a hair heat spray that I use for myself that just had a drop left in the bottom. I washed it out added a tablespoon of conditioner that I had in the bathroom and then filled it with water. The only work required was shaking the bottle and I think we can all agree that that doesn't exactly qualify as work :)

Let me just say it is amazing! The girl now sits still while I brush her hair and is no longer screaming  "AWWWW" when the brush gets stuck on a knot.

I love it so much for her I might even try spraying it on my hair!

Happy Detangling :)

Wednesday, October 12, 2011


So I haven't posted in months! I know...ridiculous. And this post isn't going to be anything fabulous...sorry.

But I had to share this delicious, super easy recipe that is just perfect for fall.

Pumpkin Pancakes...YUMMY. The girl loves them and I have to say...I do too!

Hope you enjoy


2 cups dry boxed pancake mix (I used Krusteaz whole wheat)
1.5 cups water
3/4 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
powdered sugar

Spray non-stick spray onto pan and preheat on medium/high heat.

Mix pancake mix and water until well blended. Add pumpkin and cinnamon and continue to mix. I also use a little bit of pumpkin pie spice (just because I have it) and just sprinkled a little in. If the mix is too thick you can add mater water until the right consistency.

Cook just like cooking a regular pancake.

When done, sprinkle with powdered sugar.

Delicious! Such a fun way to enjoy fall. Now all we need is some fall weather :)

Recipe Quick and Easy Pumpkin Pancakes

Saturday, July 23, 2011

{Cure Search}

So this is going to be a quick one...if you remember my last post I have been just a tad on the emotional side lately and this one definitely touches my heart.

A friend of mine who is also a pediatric nurse is going to be participating in the Tampa Bay Area CureSearch Walk. I would love for you to check out her blog and consider donating in some way. As a pediatric nurse I know how hard it is for a family to be told their child is sick. For a family to be told that their child has cancer or even worse is not going to make it just seems completely unbearable to me.

Jessica, I am very proud of you and the lives you touch everyday! Best wishes on your walk!

You can check out Jessica's Blog here A Day in the Life of the Crimella's

Thursday, July 21, 2011


OK so seriously what is it about pregnancy and the random crying that is sure to ensue no matter what? Yes, I know it is the hormones but seriously...sometimes I feel crazy.

Like the time I may or may not have cried because my husband was cooking a nice dinner for me but I just really needed Chinese food. Or the time Ian and I were watching TV and he changed the channel (during a commercial) and I completely lost it because well I was seriously into that commercial. Or the time that I may or may not have watch Free Willy and balled my eyes out. And I may or may not have watch it a second time....immediately after...only to cry again. Poor Averee...I think she really thought I had lost it :)

Oh well...only 175ish days to go! Except for then I know what comes next...the postpartum hormones....Yikes.

**Disclaimer: This post is made strictly for entertainment purposes. Just your standard pregnant lady :)**

Tuesday, July 19, 2011


So it happened. Something that I never ever thought would happen to me. Not me. I'm way to prepared for this kind of stuff but well it happened.

I ran out of diapers.

I knew our diaper stash was getting low and was in need of a replenishment STAT. I knew I should have spent the morning heading to the store to stock up on those precious disposables for my unpotty trained dolly. I knew.

What I didn't know is what was going to happen next. What I didn't know is that when the girl awoke from her nap and I placed her very last diaper on her and proceeded to gather all of our belongs for a trip to the store was that she would do the unimaginable...POOP. That's right. Right our very last no more to be accounted for anywhere diaper. And imagine my elation when I found out that it wasn't a very nice solid if you will but the other kind that you pray stays in the diaper until you rush said baby with diaper to the changing table. To top it all off...the stench was something that could parallel that of a dumpster trunk. Yikes.

So what did I do. Well I threw her in the car and ran to the store as fast as I could. Yes. We received many glares for what I imagine was a shocking site...a mom in sweaty gym clothes, afraid to take her sunglasses off for fear of being recognized and a daughter with a t-shirt and diaper on. Oh, and don't forgot the lovely fragrance that we were totting around with us.

Oh what a day. I guess it really is true that life is unpredictable. And that life as a mom will give you experiences that you your worst nightmare...thought were possible.

On another note...tonight we are going to try this....Salsa Chicken Soft Tacos . I saw this recipe over on a friends blog and it sounds delish...not to mention easy :) That's my kind of meal. I'll let you know how it turns out!

Monday, June 20, 2011

{The Whole Truth...}

So the truth is finally out there. We are expecting baby #2. And now I can finally let you in on the whole truth....regarding my lack of blogging.

You see although the above cartoon is made to give a good laugh it is also the bang on truth. Healthy glow? It's more like a nice shade of green. When I'm not hugging a toilet/trash can/bowl/sink/whatever I can get my hands on I am busy working on editing, working as a nurse and taking care of my sweet little lady. So my creative side has literally had no time to creative.

I definitely think it is true when they say each pregnancy is very different. With was a breeze. I was nauseous but if I ate a couple crackers or had a sip of ginger ale I would be just fine. I didn't have crazy cravings and I wasn't well crazy (although my husband might tell you differently).

This time around though I'm sick whether or not I lasts allllllll day long....I crave every ounce of food I can get my hands on....I'm tired beyond belief....I've already brought out a little crazy for Ian to enjoy (ie Random crying for no particular reason or getting sooooo mad at him and then not remembering why :) ). But you want to know what...I couldn't be happier. You see with Averee I must have taken 50 pregnancy tests until my first ultrasound just to make sure because I never "felt" pregnant. This time though I have been confidant in this pregnancy since before I even tested positive (I was already having symptoms). In a weird way it is just very reassuring to "feel" pregnant.

And today we were able to see our sweet little baby. And by little I mean GIANT. I apparently am destined to have giant babies. Averee was over 9 lbs and was born at exactly 40 weeks. She never measured more then 2 days ahead though. This little baby is already measuring a whole week ahead of schedule! Holy Molly! And even more exciting...we are pretty positive on the sex of this baby...although I don't plan to reveal that until later when we know for sure. The doctor told us today that he has never been so confident at a 10 week (yes I am 10 weeks along) ultrasound on the sex of the baby. Was definitely a perk to the appointment today along with hearing that the baby looks perfect. Ahhh Bliss.

So that's secret is out. I'm sorry to everyone who felt really bad for me thinking I was sick this whole time. I promise I felt really bad not telling the whole truth...I just wasn't ready to share until I saw that sweet little heart beating away. We are very excited for January 13, 2012

Tuesday, June 14, 2011


So I think a little bit of anxiety is a good thing. At least for me. It helps me to be more productive, have more excitement and learn new things.

We started swim lessons 2 weeks ago with my darling little girl and well since then my anxiety level has sky rocketed. Like to the moon and back. It is through the iSwim which is similar to the ISR swim training program and well lets just say it is intense. The very first lesson...under the water she went. Talk about a panic attack.

Now...I did know what I was getting myself into. And I do know that these swim lesson are important and necessary. Living in Florida means we are surrounded by water and we are in said water probably 9 months out of the year. And since our little woman loves the water so much it was time.

The screams, the shaking, the not sleeping, the poor eating....all of these things that suddenly changed in my girl though are making it hard. Very hard. Until today...

Today's lesson it was like a light bulb clicked in her head that "Hey...this isn't so bad." Now don't get me wrong there was still a little crying...a little whining for her "blankie" and a death grip around my neck prior to giving her to the swim instructor. But once she was in....She listened. And she just whined a little. No ear piercing shrills that made me want to dive into the pool after her. So I must anxiety level is back down. Phew!

Now fingers crossed tomorrow goes even better. Prayers are appreciated :)

And PS I do apologize for the major lack of posting. You can see what's been keeping me busy over at . Getting a business started takes some serious work! Although I am loving ever minute...but it has taken away from my time for crafting and creating. Because of this I have decided for the time being...hopefully not too long...I am going to do some post on life as a mom. I hope that I can include some easy recipes etc that we have created. If you are interested in maybe guest posting please let me know! I'd love to have you! And thank you as always for all of your love and support and for reading! Have a wonderful day!

PPS...if you are in the Orlando area and are looking for swim lesson we really love our instructor! She is amazing to work with and has been great at reassuring me along the way....the website is .

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


I've been dying to share this sweet photo of the girl and what a more perfect time then for a photo challenge with Laughter as the theme :)

She's just perfect...

Sunday, May 8, 2011

{Happy Mother's Day!}

I hope each of you have a wonderful, blessed day! Whether you are a Mommy, a soon to be Mommy or are celebrating your Mom I hope your day is filled with lots of love!

Happy Mother's Day!!!

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

{To Immunize or not to immunize...}

This post is not to spark a debate. I am sure all the information I can present to you...someone will be able to come back with just as much information for the the opposite point.

I recently read an article in a magazine that I receive and I found the numbers very interesting as to how many children are not receiving their immunizations or are receiving altered schedules for immunizations. I will put it out there that I do believe in immunizations. Yes, there are circumstances in which I believe they are not in the best interest of the child (ie too young, immunocompromised etc) but overall I think it is incredible the advancements that have been made for our children....our future.

I decided after reading the article that it was best that I went to the actually source of the information. So off to the American Medical Association web page I went :) The information on there is incredible. I highly recommend you check it out just so that you have the information you need when making this life changing decision for your children. I found in particular the information regarding the MMR injection in regards to Autism very interesting. The AMA shows the flaws in Dr. Wakefields studies and shows you other studies that are for the opposite debate.

What I find most interesting is that any medical site I go to supports immunizations and will give you the research to support it (hello...I'm a nurse....we LOVE when something is support by research!) Among some of the sites you might what to check out when making your decisions...
Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP)
Infant Immunization Not Shown to be Harmful...AMA
Relationship between MMR and autism...AMA
Pediatric Vaccines...AMA

Again, this is not to spark a debate. I believe this is a topic for you to discuss in length with your health care provider but I feel that you should too have the information to bring to your health care provider so that together you can make the proper decision for your child. I would love to hear your thoughts but please remember this is not a debate and it is more of presenting information to others. This is not to be judgmental against those who choose to immunize and those who do is merely a way to make sure everyone has ALL the information to make a sound, educated decision.

**If you have proper medical research that you would like to present for the other side please email me.  I want to be fair in my presentation of the information so if you know of a supported study for the opposite side of the debate I would like to see the information. Thanks!**

Monday, May 2, 2011

{Soft & Sweet}: I heart faces

Just for fun I thought I would participate in the I heart Faces photo challenge this week. The theme is Soft & Sweet and I just thought this was the most perfect photo from our trip to Sea World yesterday.

{Chicken Pasta Salad}

So I've debated for awhile on whether or not to share this. You see this is one of my "signature" dishes and once the secret is out everyone will be onto me with how truly easy it is!

But I decided that it is so good that I just could not keep the secret from my friends any more. This makes such a great side dish for a BBQ, Baby shower, Bridal shower etc etc. And it is so very simply.

What you'll need:
1 bag Tri Colored Pasta (you can really use any pasta I just like this for the color!)
1 pound Boneless Skinless Chicken
1 bundle of Purple Grapes
1 Jar Mayonnaise (You will need about 15 oz. I like to use the light just to keep the calories down a bit :) )
Adobe Seasoning
Assortment of Seasoning (pepper, salt, oregano)

To start, season chicken with Adobe Seasoning and grill on stove. I like to use a little olive oil in the bottom of the pan. Set aside to cool.

Next, cook Pasta and drain. While pasta is cooking cut grapes into 4ths (cut more for large grapes). Then once chicken is cool cut into bite size pieces. I like to use my kitchen scissors for this. Mix the chicken, pasta and grapes in a large bowl. Add the mayonnaise (you may need to add more to taste). Finally, sprinkle with adobe seasoning and rest of the assortment of seasonings. This is really the only "tricky" part if you will and will only be tricky for those of you who really like exact measurements. I simply add the seasoning, mix and then taste. And add more seasoning as needed.

Place pasta salad in the refrigerator to cool and thats it! It is a delicious, refreshing and I think very summery salad. The secret is in the Adobe seasoning. It gives such a nice flavor! You can find it in your grocery store usually in the ethnic food isle.

Bon appetit!

I to like Share!
Bella Before and After
Tatertots and Jello

Saturday, April 30, 2011

{Puppy Love}

I belong to a facebook Mommy group and this week we shared photos of our children and their puppies. I thought it was such an adorable idea and thought I would share with you one of my favorite photos of Averee and her puppy.

Av and Bella have been BFF from day one. Bella couldn't wait to greet her when we came home from the hospital and they have literally been inserparable since. When we leave the house Averee continually asks about Bella and as soon as we pull in the driveway she begins to chant her name. I love this special bond that my "two girls" have! Happy Saturday!!!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

{Finding Frugal}

This is a good GREAT week at Publix. There are some really great stock up and save type of sales that you should totally take advantage of. We recently purchased TONS of chicken a couple weeks back when it was on sale and we have an organic delivery coming on Thursday so I was able to really maximize our budget this week.

Here's what I got:

(2) Tyson Chicken Nuggets (Averee's favorite)
(2) Tostitos Family Size bags
(2) Nature's Own loafs of bread
(2) Heluva Good Dips
(8) Playtex Tampon
(4) BIC Razors (4 ct)
(3) Lean Cuisine meals
(3) Sundowns B6
(4) Pace Salsa
(2) Simply Milk (I even splurge and got Chocolate for Ian...his favorite :) )
(1) Greenwise Organic Whole Milk
(2) Mahatma Spanish Rice
(3) Voskos Greek Yogurt
(2) Juicy Juice

Want to know how much I spent?? Check it out...

Spent $40.09 for $146.02 worth of grocery's. 
Not bad for an hour's worth of work (I put together my whole list together during nap time today...and thats while functioning on only 3 hours of sleep so I know that you can do it too!)

Best Deals?
Playtex Tampons... $0.90/box 
BIC Razors...I was paid $0.26/pack to take them home
Sundown's B6 vitamin...I was paid $0.44/container to take them home
Heluva Good Dip...$0.50/container (Sure hoping it's Heluva Good! Alright bad joke but seriously working on 3 hours here!)
Voskos Yogurt...$0...Free :)

Happy Savings!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


Ok so I feel it is necessary to prelude this post by stating that I know I am not perfect...I never plan to be perfect...nor do I care to be perfect...that's how we learn right? However, this I just find out of control.

I recently came across a family that had a two year old and I was able to watch their breakfast habits. The mother decided on oatmeal for her toddler....I thought to myself good choice. Nice, wholesome, non sugary breakfast for a toddler who is in a prime time of growing! What came next was just beyond me...That nice bowl of plain, wholesome, actually good for you oatmeal was turned into an awful, teeth rotting, makes my stomach hurt bowl of junk. Said mom added an entire cartoon of whole milk....which I know what you are thinking...what's wrong with that? Ok...well what's wrong with that is that on top of the sugar in the milk she also added not 1, not 2, not even 3 but 7 packets of sugar!!!! You read it correctly....7! And to top it off she handed her child 8 oz of whole strength juice! I cringed at the thought of Averee eating this. Not only would she probably be a beast from the extreme sugar high she would be on but the thought of the awful nutritional habits I would be teaching her at such a young age. Ahhhh...Makes me want to scream!

Now I am guilty myself of sweetening my child's food a little. I have been known to added a little honey or maple syrup to things to get her to eat them. But when I say little I mean a drop! A small, teeny, tiny amount. And whole strength juice....Ummmmm I can count on my right hand the amount of times Averee has had whole strength juice. Her typical drink consists of 7 oz of water with about 1 oz of juice. And this actually came to my advantage when she was sick last month because to help avoid dehydration I needed her to drink so I mixed her juice at 50% juice and 50% pedialyte...She downed it!

I am also a huge believer in breakfast. I believe it starts your day out and that this one single meal can really determine how you will feel for the rest of your day. I find it especially important with a have have a healthy start.

Would you like to know how I prepare Averee's oatmeal? Well I start with plain organic baby oatmeal. I add about 1 ounce of a baby food veggie and about 2 ounce of baby food fruit (yes I still buy Earth's Best Organic baby food just for this purpose). I add a little bit of warm water and mix it all up. She loves it and not only is she getting a fruit and whole grain serving for breakfast but she is also getting a veggie serving without even knowing it.

So please...whatever you do...remember that if you teach your children at a young age what food tastes like without all the "extras" you will be helping them to create a lifetime of healthy nutritional habits.

And now I shall step down from my soap box.

Friday, April 15, 2011

{I heart Tinder Designs}

So I'm sure you all remember my fabulous sponsor Tinder Designs??? Well I'm super excited because I just received a cart cover for my dear dear friend who is expecting a baby boy in June and let me just say it is FANTASTIC! I can't wait to show it to her!

The actual pattern that I choose happened to be the very last one of that pattern but check out these gorgeous new fabrics to the shop....

 I'm pretty sure I do not know a child who would not love dinosaurs....My dinosaur freak (well at least she is when Dino Dan comes on Nick Jr. :) )
 In love with the owls...I feel like owls are the "in" thing right now and little kids love them!

I know as a Momma I would feel so stylish carting my kiddo around with this fabulousness!

So head on over to Tinder Designs and check it a mom I feel this is a must have baby buy! Great shower gift!!!

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

{My Secret...}

So I have decided that you all have waited long enough and it is time to share with you what I have been up too.

I'm sure many of you can guess and a few of you actually know. It is something that is important to me and something that I feel incredibly passionate about. It is something that I have wanted to do for a really...really...REALLY long time (just ask my husband....he's been listening to me continually talk about this for over a year now!)

SO are you ready?!?

I...Michelle Cristan... am officially the owner of Michelle C Photo, LLC!!!! Honestly, I have never been more excited (OK maybe on our wedding day and Averee's birthday but besides those... :) ).

I just love the way a photo freezes time...the way it allows you to step back...even if only for a moment...the way it can keep your memory alive. I love the way it allows you to be creative and break the rules every once in awhile.

I wanted you all to be the first to know about it since I have been a little neglectful to my very loyal and amazing readers. I thank you for being patient with me as I work to grow and continue to settle on my new path and I look forward to sharing with you my thoughts along this journey!

And here's just a little sneak on what I have been working on...

I just love how I was able to feel the love between each of these families. Amazing!

I would love for you to check out my new website.... ... and you can even follow along my Photog blog (! And of course I would totally love if you would like to share this with all of your family and friends or anyone you might know in the Orlando area!! hehe :)

Again, I thank each of you for sticking with me and I appreciate all of your support! And don't worry...the Real Life Mom blog will continue on!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

{Just so every new mommy feels normal...}

A friend of mine shared this on Facebook today and it was too good not to share. I think we all experience all of these are one point or another ....heck I still experience #5, 7, 8, 10, 11, 18 and 19....ok so practically the whole judging :)

20 things no one told us about having a newborn

Hope you it's time for me to get back to trying to get better....I haven't gotten out of my pajamas in 3 days...yeah...not good.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

{I'll be back....}

I just wanted you all to know I have not forgot about you....all my bloggy friends. I am currently working on something very important to me. It is taking up a very significant amount of time right now but I promise I will be back soon with lots to share. I appreciate you all hanging around and if anyone has something they would like to share here on the RLM I would love to have you here while I'm working on my other project!

Friday, March 25, 2011

{Guest Posting} Over at Funky Polkadot Giraffe

Hello! You can find me today over at Funky Polkadot Giraffe....check it out and let me know what you think. And why not leave a little RLM love why you're at it!!!

Funky Polkadot Giraffe

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

{Parents Magazine} 1 year for $1!

I saw this deal over at Couponers United and it was just too good not to share. You can receive a 1 year subscription to Parents Magazine for just $1. No taxes, no shipping, no nothing...Just $1!

Head on over to Barnes & and use coupon code K4M8W9D at checkout to receive your deal!

Happy Parenting!

Monday, March 21, 2011

{What not to say...}

I saw this link recently on a friends Facebook status and I just had to share...It is soooo funny yet soooo true.

Here's a list of 10 things not to say to a working mom...

1. It must be hard missing all those special moments every day.

2. I suppose it's smart that you're working. You know, in case your husband leaves you some day.

3. I'm surprised you went back to work. Your husband seems so successful.

4. It's cute when they call your nanny "Mama."

5. I just love my kids too much to leave them during the day.

6. Did you see Dateline? The one with the hidden camera in the day care?

7. I could never let someone else raise my children. But that's just me!

8. I hated my mom because she was never home after school like everyone else's mom.

9. You must feel so guilty.

10. I wish I were as laid-back as you and could just let the housework go.

Thanks Redbook for the great laugh!

Have you ever heard any off the wall things? I was told when I was still pregnant that I better not be "farming" my children out. I had to ask for clarification (apparently it means daycare). I laughed and said I went to school too long to not use my knowledge to help others. The conversation ended after that :)

Next, up I'm working on a list of what not to say to a pregnant woman....I'd love to hear your ideas!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

{Happy St. Patrick's Day!}

Whether you are Irish or not I wish you this blessing. May your day be filled with love and laughter and may your life be filled with joy.

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

I just received a message of someone who tried to print this out. I did not create this just simply shared it on my blog. I am unsure of how the print quality would be or if you are even able to print it. Thank you.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

{27} Candles

 A birthday. A celebration. A day of relaxation, of pampering, of being all about you.

Until you become a parent.

To be honest I never thought about having my birthday not be about me.

I like to consider myself a fairly giving and caring person (fingers crossed I'm not wrong!) and 364 days of the year I focus on everyone else.

But March 12....March 12 is my day. My day to be selfish and celebrate me. My day to have all my friends and family surrounding me...singing to me....celebrating me.

This year was different though. My little woman was ill. Like really ill. Like I don't want anyone else to catch her cooties ill. So out went the party, the celebrating, the fun. March 12 was about her. My girl. My love.

I never considered this aspect of parenthood before and although I was feeling pretty down this weekend (yeah I felt sorry for myself) I now am starting to feel blessed.

You see I got to spend my day with the two loves of my life. I ate sushi and had a nice glass of wine. I relaxed. I snuggled with my little lady. She gave me hugs and kisses all day and my husband did the dishes. My mom stopped by and relaxed with us too.

So even though the day did not go according to plan I still had a great day. It's just these littler reminders when it comes to our lives as parents about how things really are different. I really don't think you are ever prepared (even if you think you are) to change every aspect of your life.

***I did not create this post in hopes of pity. I created it so that if you are ever presented in a situation where you are feeling down you can think back and remember that you are not alone and that it is ok to  be a little selfish sometimes. That is is normal to have your world turned upside down and that sometimes you forget that it was. That parenthood is tough and no matter how ready for it you are...there are aspects of it that you just never really consider.***

**Looking for something to get me for my birthday? How about checking out the RLM sponsors! Promise it will make my day! :) **
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