MY Sleep Savior

I have suffered from sleep issues for as long as I can remember. My mom has sleep issues so I always assumed there wasn’t much I could do. At one point I became so tired, while at my doctors office for my yearly physical I broke down in tears at how exhausted I was. She put me on a prescription sleep aid for nights I needed my body to truly reset. And the pills worked great. But I always hated the idea of them. And eventually stopped taking them and started researching natural ways to get better sleep. I tried everything from drinking hot water before bed, lavender baths, and eating certain foods for dinner. Nothing worked. I was about to throw in the towel when I heard about Olly vitamins. I was told the Olly “sleep” gummies worked really well so I decided to give them a try.

I love that they only have three ingredients (Melatonin, L-Theanine, and Botanicals), all of which help calm, relax, and promote sleep. I took two gummies 30 minutes before bed and started feeling very relaxed and fell asleep VERY easily. I thought it was too good to be true so tried them the following night too. And I got the same results. They even helped me fall back asleep quickly when I woke up in the middle of the night. This was very new territory, but in the best way possible. After a few weeks of taking the gummies I wanted to try to find a way to sleep without having to take any sleep aid. The mission continued.

While I was visiting my friend Ashley at her Miami apartment she handed me a sleep mask. Because her apartment was so bright she said I would need it.  I told her it was okay because I could never sleep in a sleep mask. She just told me to try it, so I obliged. Not only did I sleep phenomenally and fall back asleep easily, I slept until late in the morning. I’ve learned that when I wake up, if I see any light, I am wide awake for the rest of the night. But this mask allows you to open your eyes, see black, and easily fall back asleep. THIS MASK IS A MUST! Even my sister, who swore she would never wear a sleep mask, tried it out at my house and ended up purchasing one for herself. She says she has never slept better.

 

Essentials for Infants/Toddlers Part 1

 

Motherhood, Oh Motherhood. It can be frustrating and challenging, but it can also be rewarding and the best thing in the entire world. There are days when I feel like I have it all together and then days when I wonder, “is it bedtime yet?” The days where it is bad, I am so grateful for places like Walmart where I can get everything I need and delivered quickly. They even offer a free one day delivery, which every parent needs!  It is truly a one stop shop. So whether you need items for breastfeeding or you run out of diapers and can’t get to the store, Walmart has you covered. And I am SO grateful their website is easy to navigate so I can get in, get what I need, and then go handle Eleanor.

Every single item on this list I have and currently use and swear by. I took my time to curate the items that I tell my closest friends they need in their arsenal. Motherhood is tough enough, don’t go another day without these essentials.

  1. The Jovvy – This little buggy was something I used EVERYDAY before Eleanor was walking. It gave me piece of mind when I needed some time to get things done. She was fully contained so I knew she couldn’t get into anything and best part, she loved it!
  2. CeraVe Lotion – My pediatrician actually recommended this for Eleanor’s face. I use it every night on her face and her sensitive skin has never had a negative reaction.
  3. The Bumbo – I used this so much before Eleanor could sit up on her own and even after. I placed her in it on the counter while I cooked dinner. She loved watching, snacking and getting to be up high (of course I always strapped her in).
  4. Plum Organics – I loved this brand when E first started eating. She loved every flavor and that she could hold them on her own. To this day, if she sees one she tries to start eating it immediately.
  5. The Bento Box – This makes meal planning SO easy! It is sectioned off with labels like, “dairy, protein, grains, fruits.” I am obsessed and have even considered buying myself one!
  6. Glass Food Storage – I cook a lot of Eleanor’s food in bulk and then store it for the next day or two. These glass containers are so easy and makes organization in the refrigerator so easy.
  7. Munchkin Soft-Tip Spoons – These are the perfect size and so easy for infant/toddlers to hold.
  8. The Brezza – If you are doing formula this is the one item YOU MUST OWN! It measures and heats up the perfect bottle using your formula just by a press of a button. I bought my sister one for her third kid and she said she now tells all of her friends they have to own it! It makes making bottles 1 million times easier!
  9. Avanchy Bamboo Bowl – This bowl suctions on the bottom so it stays in place on the table (i.e. no throwing it on the floor).
  10. The Ergo Baby Holder – I only used this around the house when Eleanor was having a bad day. And it helped a lot! I could have my hands free and she would stop crying. It is also phenomenal during travel!
  11. Aquaphore Baby – My most used item! It works like a charm on keeping diaper rash at bay. Tip from my night nurse- put an exorbitant amount on the child at night so if they happen to go to the bathroom and you can’t change the diaper for a while, the waste runs right off of them and never hits their skin. It is something I still do to this day.
  12. Little Swimmers – No way around it, you have to have swim diapers and sometimes they are gross (#2). But these are really easy and have always worked for us. Tip – Our swim teacher said if they don’t go to the bathroom in them you can throw them in the dryer and reuse them. I have done this once and it worked phenomenally.
  13. Tommee Tippie Bibs (with the snaps) – I HATED bibs before my friend told me about this one. Eleanor would always rip hers off and it was a battle every meal. This one has snaps in the back so she can’t take it off. She has even gotten used to wearing it and no longer fights with it.
  14. Rock-A-Stack Rings – These are awesome for development. This is one of the first toys I ever bought Eleanor and she still pulls it out of the toy box. It has been so fun watching her as a baby barely be able to pull the rings off to now being able to take the off and stack them back on.
  15. Noodle and Boo Shampoo – Plain and simple, I love the way this stuff smells. I also believe it cleans really well. I have purchased a few different brands and nothing comes close to the way this one lathers and washes away dirt.
  16. Noodle and Boo Lotion – Again, I love the way this smells. It is that typical, sweet, clean baby smell. It also seems to really moisturize her body and last through the night.
  17. Munchkin Click Lock Sippie-Cup – I have gone through so many sippie-cups that leak. It is astounding how so many companies can continue to make such trash. I have found that these work well. They are a new addition to my collection so time will tell, but so far so good.
  18. Silicone Chew Ring – Oh my gosh, teething! No one can warn you with how bad it can be. Eleanor had four teeth break through at the exact same time. She cried for three straight weeks. These were nice because I could give them to her in the carseat and they would not only feel good on her gums but also kept her preoccupied.
  19. Pampers Wipes – I am a pampers girl. Their products just work. I would say they are the Bounty of baby wipes. One wipe has been enough to clean some of the largest dirty diapers.
  20. Pampers Swaddlers – Every baby is different but these fit Eleanor perfectly and I can count on one hand how many times they have failed me. Which at 14 months, is saying a lot (knocking on wood as I speak).
  21. IcyBite Key Teether – These are amazing because you can put them in the freezer and they feel so good on your baby’s gums. Added bonus, holding something cold makes them very curious and buys you a few extra minutes to get things done.
  22. Melissa & Doug Nesting Stacking Blocks – Hands down one of Eleanor’s favorite toys. I bought these at the same time as the rings and she still uses them. Her favorite is for me to stack them all on top of each other and let her knock it over. According to our PlayWisley instructor, this is excellent for development.
  23. Melissa & Doug Wood Music Makers – We have these in our play room and Eleanor loves to walk around the house holding them. They are definitely a toy she continues to reach for.
  24. Fischer Price Stroll Along Walker – After the Joovy, this is her favorite walker ever. I believe it helped her understand the concept of walking before she could actually walk. She now puts her doll in it and proudly walks her around the house. It is absolutely adorable!
  25. Skip  Hop Activity Gym – Activity gyms are ugly but necessary. I got this one for Eleanor as I didn’t think it was as bad as the other ones. You will use them EVERYDAY before your baby can sit up. They are so mesmorized by all the things dangling from above. This comes with a few items but my night nurse told me to, “junk it up.” So I bought tons of rings and toys to string from the arc as well.
  26. Fisher Price Record Player – This is a new purchase but it comes with different records you can switch out and all of them play famous lullabies. I think it is adorable and would make for a really fun gift.
  27. Melissa & Doug Caterpillar Xylophone – This is something I like to just have in our toy chest. She uses it from time to time but I read they are a great way to introduce sounds and music to them.
  28. Water Wipes – In the words of my friend Lauren, “Are you even a mom if you don’t have water wipes in every bag?” I agree. I use these ALL THE TIME! From wiping her and me after meals, cleaning her stroller, and at restaurants. I get nervous when I run low on them.
  29. VTech Classic Nursery Rhymes Book – We read real books to her every night but during the day I love these interactive books. She enjoys turning the pages and listening to the music. I recently even bought some in french to introduce it into her world.

 

 

thank you to Walmart for partnering on this post

UNDRESS Clothing

After becoming a mom the amount of nice clothing I need has diminished. My new normal is having some kind of food or drool on me at any moment of the day. I need more Gap & Zara and less of the designers I used to love investing in. That being said, I don’t love spending a lot of money on fast fashion. I think it is a dangerous game to play (in terms of over-consumption and our environment). So with investment pieces out, and trying to cut back on fast fashion, I really found a void in clothing that was priced between $200-$350. It seems everything is way less expensive or way more. A lot of the dresses I found around $200 are either too boho or too beachy.

I am not even sure how I found UNDRESS but it was love at first click. I died at how beautiful the dresses were and almost didn’t click further as I was sure it would be $1000. I.WAS.WRONG. Most dresses are all priced between $200-$400. Because each piece is so timeless and a closet staple I have zero qualms about spending that amount on one item. You can wear one of these dresses for a date night, baby/wedding shower, a wedding, or cocktails!

Finally, I can breathe a sigh of relief that such a brand exists! Thank you UNDRESS for filling a massive void in the market!

SHOP UNDRESS (click here)

First Row // 1, 2, 3

Second Row  // 1, 2, 3

Third Row // 1, 2, 3

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