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    Beer Themed Teacher Gifts- Plus a Free Downloadable Beer Poem

    beer gift ideas for teachers end of the school year teachers week

    Teaching is hard. There are a lot of days when I am thankful that I am not a teacher. Basically it boils down to me not even being able to deal with my own two kids. So how could I deal with a class of 20+ kids?! What I do know is that teachers deserve an awesome gift for the end of the school year. What is better than beer? I know wine related gifts are super popular for teachers these days. However, let’s remember the male teachers who may shy away from the wine and those female teachers who love a good Blue Moon, Angry Orchard or even a Corona while they are floating around the pool.

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    Peak Adulting 101: Getting Estate Planning Done Painlessly

    Estate planning isn't as morbid as I thought it was. It's necessary to make sure that your family is taken care of. My lawyer at LegalSpark helped me to see this and I'm sharing what I've learned here.
    I partnered with LegalSpark to share my thoughts and experience using their service. I have received compensation for this post but all opinions are my own.

    Hi. My name is Aaronica and I’m clueless about Estate Planning.

    Ok, well, I was. In fact, not only was I clueless but the idea of having to do Estate Planning was really scary for me. It seemed morbid and like I was preparing for death–not something I really want to be thinking about right now as I’m living in my prime. But today I had a really great conversation with with LegalSpark–a new tool that connects the average person with a legal expert in Georgia–that helped me out so much.

    What Is Estate Planning?

    This is the year that my husband and I have vowed to get our adult lives together. Yes, we’re adults. We’re parents. We’re married. We’re doing the adulting but we aren’t PEAK adulting just yet. What do I mean by that? I mean we haven’t done some of the harder things, like Estate Planning or updated our retirement stuff or done any of the things we looked at our parents like they were old for doing–peak adulting.

    The first task we’re tackling is in this Estate Planning. So what is that? In a nutshell it’s the living will, last will, and living trust for a family. When you plan this out, what you’re doing is basically planning for what happens should you and your spouse die. Obvious, right? Yes, the basics of it is. But then there’s the nitty gritty that I was able to discuss with my lawyer (sounds so grown up, right?) from LegalSpark. I asked a lot of really great questions that I’m going to share with you guys here so you’re prepared for this part of your life too.

    What are must-haves when jumping into Estate Planning?

    Always have a financial/property Power of Attorney (POA) and a healthcare POA. The healthcare POA is the person that will make decisions about your health should you be in a coma or otherwise unable to make decisions.

    When should you prepare a will?
    It’s really necessary once you have children as you will specify what happens to your assets in your will. By default, if you pass away they will be split between your spouse and children but if your children are young, you’re going to want to make sure you leave directions on what to do. 

    What’s the difference between a living will, last will and living trust?

    A living will is essentially the healthcare POA. With the living will, someone else will execute it while you’re still alive. The last will is what you want to happen with your family and assets upon your death. The living trust really simplifies how things happen. Your assets are placed into a trust while you’re alive and they’re transferred to a designated beneficiary upon your death.

    Which one should you have?
    All three. If you’re trying to minimize paperwork and the amount of money you spend in getting these set up, definitely have both a living and last will. 

    Do you need an attorney to get these set up?
    Need? No but it’s helpful to have an attorney and it will save you money in the long run. While you can print out the paperwork and complete it yourself, because attorney’s are trained there are going to be things that we see that will ultimately benefit you and your family. We’re able to provide more options to you. 

    Do I need to declare a guardian?

    Yes & no. A guardian will be declared but if you don’t do it prior to death then there’s a lot of time and money involved for the person trying to become the guardian.

    Life insurance: how does this play into things?

    This is your financial plan. Once you have it set up, the attorney will make sure that the beneficiaries are set up properly. 

    Is it hard to change a will?
    No, all plans are easily amendable. With something like divorce, the spouse is automatically removed from the will but you would need to update beneficiaries for life insurance policies and such. 

    After my 20 minute conversation with LegalSpark, I felt better prepared on what I needed to do to get this Estate Planning rolling. He was really reassuring about the reasons why Estate Planning is necessary. As a mom of 3, it’s really important to me that my kids are taken care of in the event that something happens to their dad and I. Morbid? A little. Peak adulting? Most definitely. Now it’s just time to get the ball rolling with getting our documents together! The best part about this is I already have an attorney that I can submit them to for review!

    Estate planning isn't as morbid as I thought it was. It's necessary to make sure that your family is taken care of. My lawyer at LegalSpark helped me to see this and I'm sharing what I've learned here.

    LegalSpark: The Legal Asset We All Need

    There was a time when only people with lots of money had access to lawyers for advice. Paying a hefty retainer would get you instant access to the minds of legal help but not anymore. In pretty much every role that I’m in, a lawyer is needed and LegalSpark makes getting my questions asked both easy and affordable. They have lawyers that specialize in the following:

    • Bankruptcy & Collections
    • Criminal Defense (though you may need longer than the 20 minutes)
    • Elder Law & SS/Disability
    • Family & Divorce
    • Intellectual Property
    • Real Estate
    • Business
    • DUI & Traffic
    • Estate Planning
    • Immigration
    • Labor & Employment
    • Tort & Personal Injury

    Yeah, so basically everything.

    Common Questions:

    So how does it work?
    It’s super easy to get set up because you don’t need to register an account or anything to get started. It’s literally as easy as 1-2-3:

    1. Choose the area you need help with on legalspark.com.
    2. LegalSpark will pair you with an expert lawyer based on the chosen area of interest.
    3. Wait for them to call you!

    Yes, it’s just that easy.

    How is this different from other services?
    This of this has like a Dial-a-Doctor line. Except you’re not sick and it’s not a doctor but the doctor is the lawyer. And they’re still helping you.

    Is this service nationwide?
    It’s important to note that as of right now, this service is only available in Georgia.

    Let’s talk numbers… How much does it cost?
    It’s $50 for the first 20 minutes.

    What if my question last longer than the 20 minutes?
    No worries–you won’t be cut off or charged extra. There’s no hassle to continue speaking with the lawyer once you’re done either. You get to determine the length of the relationship.

    The 20 minute call is a basic introduction to a competent attorney in your area of need. But you should be prepared for this call because 20 minutes can go fast! Here’s how to max out on your call:

    • Have all your background information ready to share.
    • Ask pointed questions AFTER sharing this information.
    • If you need more information, don’t be afraid to contact the lawyer via their law firm.

    Contact LegalSpark today to help get started with your legal woes (no judgement) or questions!

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    Vegan Peanut Butter & Chocolate Smoothie

    Chocolate has been my strongest craving to date since breastfeeding BC. Instead of giving into my cravings, I've been making these vegan peanut butter & chocolate smoothies that are god for me courtesy of VeganSmart protein.
    I received compensation for my opinion on VeganSmart. All opinions and thoughts are my own.

    Smoothies are the bane of our household. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t hear, “Mommy can I make a smoothie?” Not only do they make it super easy to hide veggies in, but they taste really great too. As I’ve been losing weight while boosting my milk supply, I’ve become pretty well-versed in the art of the smoothie so I’m excited to share one of my favorite recipes here for one that kills your chocolate cravings.

    Satisfy Your Chocolate Cravings

    It never fails that whenever I have a baby and I’m trying to get my life right, chocolate cravings hit. And they hit hard too! My favorite ways to satisfy these cravings are with Oreo’s, Snickers Bars, brownies, Peanut M&M’s and Reese’s Peanut Butter cups. There’s something about the combination of the peanut butter and chocolate that just warms my stomach while making me feel so good!

    Mama Has Goals Y’all!!

    I do. Already this year I’m down close to 25lbs and I’m making health my way of life. While I do believe in having everything in moderation, your girl just isn’t ready for moderation JUST yet. But you know what I can do? I can substitute the unhealthy things with the healthy things until I can practice moderation. That’s why I am loving this smoothie I accidentally stumbled into!

    Chocolate has been my strongest craving to date since breastfeeding BC. Instead of giving into my cravings, I've been making these vegan peanut butter & chocolate smoothies that are god for me courtesy of VeganSmart protein.

    Vegan Peanut Butter & Chocolate Smoothie

    Ready to boost your milk supply, satisfy your chocolate cravings while being mindful of your waistline? 

    Course Drinks
    Keyword Smoothie
    Servings 1 person

    Ingredients

    • 8 oz Almond Milk I use vanilla that's been sweetened.
    • 1 scoop Chocolate VeganSmart Protein
    • 1 tbsp Peanut Butter
    • 1 tsp Honey
    • 2 tsbp Ground Flax Seed You can use regular flax seeds too.
    • Ice

    Instructions

    1. Measure out ingredients and add to blender.

    2. Blend. 

    3. **Optional: Add ice to get desired consistency.

    4. Enjoy!

    Why I Choose VeganSmart Protein

    I once left a protein shake in the shaker for like 3 days or something. When I opened it, it smelled like death was brewing in there. Really. It then occurred to me that I was putting this into my body! Yeah, terrible.

    VeganSmart is a plant-based protein powder and contains the following:

    • 20g Non-GMO Protein
    • 6g Dietary Fiber
    • No Cholesterol
    • Zero Trans Fat
    • Dairy & Soy Free
    • Gluten Free
    • Whole Food Complex
    • Vitamins & Minerals
    • Omega 3
    • Prebiotics
    • Digestive Enzymes

    Because of the nutrition that’s in there, I feel safe giving it to my kids as well.

    What has been one of your “bad” cravings post-baby? How did you navigate it?

     

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    5 Ways To Rock The Mompreneur Life Right Now

    Being a mompreneur is one of the hardest yet most fulfilling jobs to have.  It’s not perfect and it has its ups and downs. Working from home allows us to be closer to our loved ones and available in times of need like when one of our kids is sick or to chaperone a field trip.  But it can also be stressful and overwhelming at times. Learning to balance work and life is challenging. After working from home for the past eight months, I’ve definitely learned a thing or two and I’d like to share them so that you too can make your way off the mompreneur struggle buss.

    Being a mom is an amazing job. Adding a business to that job along with the title of mompreneur doubles that amazingness--and overwhelm! Here are 5 tips on how you can succeed in this role.

    Photo courtesy of nappy.co

    1. Plan your life away

    We’ve all heard the common saying “fail to plan, plan to fail.”  It might sound cliche, but it is a golden rule when it comes to being organized and staying on task as both a mom and business owner.  Between household chores, work, errands, and school activities, the life of a mompreneur can be both tiresome and overwhelming.  Planning out your day, week, and the month ahead can save you from so much headache.

    Break down your day into blocks of time for different tasks to complete.  It can also be easier to choose certain days of the week to focus on one specific task.  For example, Monday can be your day to strictly focus on editing blog content and Tuesday can be your day to clean out your emails and respond to those emails that ended up in the weeds.  Doing it this way will help you to focus on one task at a time rather than being overwhelmed by the struggle of taking it all on at once.

    2. Don’t cry over spilled milk

    Although you may plan out your entire day consistently, there may be times when you just don’t get things done and that’s okay.  Don’t beat yourself up if that planned meal turns out to be pizza because you forgot to thaw out the chicken.  Maybe you didn’t have the time to fold clothes or meet the deadline for that blog post.  Whatever the case, you did what you could and that’s what matters most.  Tomorrow is always another day.  We’re not perfect people and we have to be okay with that.  Twenty four hours can pass by pretty fast and there may seem like there are more things to do than the actual time to complete them.  Don’t stress over things that will ultimately be there for you when you get back to them.

    Being a mom is an amazing job. Adding a business to that job along with the title of mompreneur doubles that amazingness--and overwhelm! Here are 5 tips on how you can succeed in this role.

    3. Sleep on it

    “Team No Sleep” is not a team I’d want to be a part of, amiright?  I tried it out and honestly, I was no good to anyone.  My kids were late to school every day and I couldn’t stay awake long enough to tackle my goals for the day.  Besides, bags under my eyes just don’t look appealing.  So, let’s just throw away the whole team no sleep concept.  In order to function properly as not only a business owner, but a mom, and wife, we have to ensure that were taking care of ourselves.  A huge part of self-care and actually getting those zzz’s in.  Make sure you get to bed early so you can start your day off bright and early.  You’d be amazed at the amount of tasks you can accomplish just by waking up an hour or two earlier than you normally would.

    4. Involve your children

    Try to find small tasks for your children to do so that they feel involved rather than feeling in the way.  Explain to them what it is you’re doing and why along with how it benefits them.  I my children know that their opinions are needed and valid rather than leaving them left out when it comes to my business ventures. My oldest helps me create shipping labels and prepare packages to go out.  The kids even come with me when I travel to events and the cute faces are always a plus when gaining sales or engaging with potential customers.  I also let my children know why we have a business and that they are a very important part of it. My daughters are always providing suggestions for our business being that one of my businesses is for children.

    5. Set office hours

    You may not physically have an office and that’s totally okay.  If you’re anything like me, your office can easily go from being your bed, to the kitchen table or even a local coffee shop.  Wherever you decide to get work done, be sure to create hours for yourself to break free from the keyboard and live life.  It can become very easy to allow yourself to get lost in a rabbit hole in the World Wide Web.  It can also be easy for others to take advantage of your time.  You need to be able to establish boundaries between yourself and your clients or potential clients.

    Choose certain days of the week when you consider yourself “closed” to be able to spend time with family without checking emails or responding to DMs.  Ensure that there is a specific hour of the day that you cut off work so you’re not still communicating with clients in the middle of the night.  No one will respect your time if you don’t.  You can easily become burned out and overwhelmed if you’re constantly working around the clock. It can be detrimental to not only yourself, but you family as well.

    It’s not perfect, but it’s worth it!

    Working from home has been a great part of the bonding experience with my children and I’m grateful for the time that we have together, even if it is while sitting behind computer screen.  I’ve learned to create a flexible schedule for myself when enjoying the freedom of being my own boss.  Is it easy being a mompreneur?  Nope!  Not at all, but there’s no other way I’d rather make a living.

    Do you work for yourself? What tips and tricks can you share for mastering the mompreneur life?

    Don’t forget to Pin this!

    Being a mom is an amazing job. Adding a business to that job along with the title of mompreneur doubles that amazingness--and overwhelm! Here are 5 tips on how you can succeed in this role.

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    5 Ways to Avoid Tick Bites

    5 Ways to Avoid Tick Bites Plus an Essential Oils Tick Repellent Spray Recipe
    This post contains affiliate links. For more information on what this means, please check out the PR & Disclosure page.

    I am going to be honest with you. This girl was never really afraid of bugs when I was younger. I didn’t even know what a tick was to even be worried. But now, ticks are constantly in the news and on my social media feeds. Parents posting, “is this a bull’s-eye rash from a tick bite?” or “Do these symptoms sounds like Lyme Disease?” and so on. I didn’t even know how many different species of ticks there actually are. The best way to not get bit by a tick is to take precaution before heading outside. Check out these 5 ways to avoid tick bites.

    1. Know Where Ticks Live

    Earlier this week there was a Facebook post from my local TV station about a shrub that ticks love to live in, the Japanese Barberry. According to the article, the shrub acts as a nursery for deer ticks, which can carry Lyme Disease. Pennsylvania is home to one-third of all Lyme Disease cases in the United States, and studies have shown that not only are more deer ticks found in Barberry patches, those ticks are more apt to carry Lyme.

    According to Terminix, ticks love moist and humid environments, but they can adapt to any number of different areas. I feel like no matter where you live, you could find a tick. Check out these maps from the CDC and find out what kind of tick is prevalent in your area.

    2. Always Use a Tick Prevention Spray

    There isn’t a fool-proof prevention spray that 100% deters ticks, so I always like to go with the all-natural route first. I make a homemade tick prevention spray using my Young Living oils. I use lemongrass and eucalyptus oils mixed with a small amount of water in a metal spray bottle. This mix gets sprayed on my family before we head outdoors. I spray from feet to head because I feel like ticks are more likely to get on your feet, but truly they can jump on anywhere.

    5 Ways to Avoid Tick Bites and an Essential Oil Tick Repellent Spray Recipe

    You can also check out other bug sprays at your local stores for body and clothing. Please be aware of the amount of DEET and Permethrin used. There should be at least 20-30% DEET to be effective, but DEET makes me nervous with the kids, so I use cautiously. As for Permethrin, there needs to be 0.5% to be effective for tick prevention. Products with Permethrin in them are NOT safe for the body, only clothing.

    3. Play in Sunny Areas

    Ticks are less likely to be in dry, sunny areas. When you are planning to build or set up a playground in your yard, choose a sunny area that dries out easily. Same with any outdoor furniture. Stay away from thick, wooded areas. If you do have to venture into the woods, wear proper clothing, prevention sprays and try to stay on a cleared path.

    4. Wear Proper Clothing

    I know. I know. If it is hot out, the last thing I want to think about wearing are pants and long sleeves. But if I am going to be around high grass, a wooded area, or actually in the woods, then it is best that I wear long sleeves, pants and a hat to prevent ticks from getting on exposed skin. If you have long hair, braid it or make sure to pull it in a ponytail. You don’t want a tick hitching a ride on your hair.

    5 Ways to Avoid Tick Bites Plus an Essential Oils Tick Repellent Spray Recipe

    5. Shower After You are Finished Outside

    Make sure you check over your whole body while showering to ensure ticks are not present. Be sure to check warm spots on your body like behind your ears, under your armpits and between your fingers and toes. Ticks are tiny and can look like a freckle if you are not careful.

    Have you ever had a tick bite? If so, where do you live? What was your outcome? Check out this other post about eco-friendly pesticides for more bug information!

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    Math Mammoth: A Self-Teaching Homeschool Math Curriculum

    I love math but it's not my strongest subject to teach which is why I LOVE Math Mammoth! Not only is it super affordable, but it teaches your kids without you having to be a mathematical genius!
    I received compensation to share my thoughts and opinions on Math Mammoth.

    I wouldn’t say that I’m not math savvy but I also wouldn’t say it’s my favorite subject to teach. When teaching math, you need to be able to explain concepts and give direction in a way that’s easily digestible. This is NOT my strong suit!!! This is also the reason I’ve fallen in love with the Math Mammoth Curriculum!!!

    The Difference With Math Mammoth

    I’m pretty new to using curriculums but Math Mammoth makes it pretty easy for this mama. It has a complete curriculum for grades 1-7 and I love this. Since I’m homeschooling THREE, this is something that will grow with us. We typically do a combination of workbooks, worksheets, and computer based learning. Math Mammoth combines these easily.

    Computer Based Learning

    Math Mammoth comes with a computer-based program that has a couple of different functions and options to help kids achieve math mastery.

    Math Master

    With this part of the program you can choose what concept the child is working on and then you can further specify what you want them to work on. We’re working on Multiplication now. Because this is a concept we’re just starting we’re starting with (1-6). I also love how you can go through the lessons with the timer on or off.

    I love math but it's not my strongest subject to teach which is why I LOVE Math Mammoth! Not only is it super affordable, but it teaches your kids without you having to be a mathematical genius! I love math but it's not my strongest subject to teach which is why I LOVE Math Mammoth! Not only is it super affordable, but it teaches your kids without you having to be a mathematical genius!

    Math User

    This one is for older students. I love this because it really challenges Mini to take her time to read and understand what questions are being asked. There are 3 different levels to choose from which is helpful when teaching more than one level student as well as making sure you’re consistently presenting a challenge.

    I love math but it's not my strongest subject to teach which is why I LOVE Math Mammoth! Not only is it super affordable, but it teaches your kids without you having to be a mathematical genius!

    Worksheets

    Math Mammoth isn’t only computer based learning–there are worksheets as well. Some don’t like worksheets (I hate using all the paper) but there’s a real benefit to having them.

    Math Maker

    This is the section that is used to print out math activities. You can print out the answer keys as well but that’s optional.

    I love math but it's not my strongest subject to teach which is why I LOVE Math Mammoth! Not only is it super affordable, but it teaches your kids without you having to be a mathematical genius!

    Not sure how to make sure they’re covering all that they’re supposed to be? 

    Math Mammoth has an answer for that too!!!

    This was one of the biggest selling points for me. It took the amount of thinking I needed to do in order to make sure that I covered everything for her year. They have the Common Core Alignment broken down by grade along with everything you need.

    I love math but it's not my strongest subject to teach which is why I LOVE Math Mammoth! Not only is it super affordable, but it teaches your kids without you having to be a mathematical genius!

    Mind. Blown. 

    So clearly I’m a fan of Math Mammoth but the most important thing is that so is Mini. She loves math and loves that she gets to both learn and practice in multiple ways. If you’re interested in seeing if Math Mammoth is for you, check out their free resources and placement tests

    What are the deets for purchase, right? Math Mammoth offers multiple bundles depending on where your specific students are. I love how affordable the curriculum is given how expensive some of these curriculums are–grades 1-7 for under $150. Yesssss!!!!

    Math Mammoth is giving away FIFTY of their Light Blue Series!!!! Enter below:

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    How To Build A Baby Boy’s Wardrobe



    This post is sponsored by Carter’s; however, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

    After having two little girls, I was really looking forward to building my baby boy’s wardrobe. People think that little girls have all the fun when it comes to fashion but I’m learning that there are so many cute things for little boys too but most of these are just seen as your basics. Here’s the thing: these basics are the building blocks to any babies wardrobes and are definitely must-haves.

    So how do you get started with building your baby boy’s wardrobe? Here are some tips that I’ve found useful:

    After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

    Choose a color scheme.

    This is a tip that I picked up from my friend Katie from Typical Katie. We have sons that are a month apart. She has an older son as well that dresses super cute so she’s got this dressing boy thing down. Something that I didn’t anticipate was liking to put BC in shades of gray, black and navy blues. Not only does this make it easier to match with other things, it also helps with stains.

    After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

    Don’t be afraid of patterns.

    And not the typical boy patterns like cars, trucks and things. Stripes are really popular now and these are a great neutral to have in your baby’s wardrobe. Because they’re so small, going with smaller stripes don’t overpower the clothing. Also, try a pattern in muted colors.

    After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here. After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

    Pick accessories that are as functional as they are cute.

    Teething is a necessary evil that brings forth incessant drooling. It’s terrible. I mean, drool is just EVERYWHERE. While bibs do the job of keeping drool off of clothing, they aren’t normally the most fashion forward–until now. Bibs are definitely a necessary accessory and are getting more and more cute!

    After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here. After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

    Finding basics that fall in line with these three tips used to be hard and only available at baby boutiques costing small fortunes but not anymore.

    Introducing Carter’s Little Baby Basics

    All of my kids have worn Carter’s as babies. I’ve always loved their clothes for a couple reasons:

    1. Their clothes are always age appropriate and on-trend.
    2. The durability is unmatched.
    3. The quality of fabric is incredible.

    After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

    When I walked into Carter’s for the first time after having BC to shop, it was a little weird because it was my first time shopping on the boys side. By weird I mean exciting.After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

    The Little Baby Basics has everything that you need to build a solid baby boy’s wardrobe. They have:

    • The Original Bodysuit in different color sets
    • Easy Outfit Sets
    • Sleep & Plays
    • Little Character Sets
    • Little Extras
    • Gift Sets

    After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here. After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

    While all of Carter’s clothes are really soft and comfortable feeling, this Little Baby Basics line feels EXTRA soft and snuggly! The teething bib is so soft that it’s not a bother around BC’s neck at all. That and it’s super cute. My husband’s favorites are the sleeveless Original Bodysuits. These are so cute on BC. They show off his mini muscles and make it so he won’t overheat in this hot Georgia summer as well as serve as great undershirts for the fall and winter.

    After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here. After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

    Not only does Carter’s have cute clothes of amazing quality but they have coupons!!! Carter’s is offering 20% off $40+ through June 30 with
    this code! Online: CART4342 in store: 066944.

    Your turn: What’s basics are a must have for your baby’s wardrobes?

    After having two little girls who love all things pink and purple, I was excited to finally build my baby boy's wardrobe! But even that can be daunting! Thanks to Carter's and their new Little Baby Basics Collection, it's been easy breezy. Check out my tips here.

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    Saving For Summer Camp — A How To Guide

    Are you ready to make sure your kids (and your bank accounts) have the summer of their dreams? Check out these incredible tips on saving for summer camp that are sure to make your budgets a breeze.

    Last week Christine talked about the summer camp mom guilt she felt when looking at the prices for the programs her daughter wanted to attend. While my little isn’t quite there yet, I’m already mentally preparing and saving for summer camp. Friends and family have already shared some of the costs for kids activities so I know I’m going to have a good sized cushion!

    While the price tag may seem daunting, there is hope to making saving for summer camp both a feasible and family affair. Again make this process a FAMILY AFFAIR. It’s never too early to not only teach your children about money, but the importance of savings. Delayed gratification and patience are essential to learn in our world that wants everything instantly. Here are a few tips to teach your children while enrolling them in the summer camps that their little hearts’ desire:

    Are you ready to make sure your kids (and your bank accounts) have the summer of their dreams? Check out these incredible tips on saving for summer camp that are sure to make your budgets a breeze.

    IDENTIFY THE TOP 3 CAMPS

    Look at the summer camp catalog from local recreation departments, schools, and churches. Talk to your children about the cost of each. For older children, have a cap on the amount to be spent so they can understand how to make decisions with limited resources. You won’t feel like the bad parent for saying “we can’t afford this”. Pose questions like “Will space camp and basketball camp both fit in your budget?”

    FIGURE OUT THE SAVINGS PLAN THAT’S RIGHT FOR YOU

    Pinterest has tons of creative money saving challenges. These I highly encourage because they do not require huge shifts in your budget immediately:

    • Envelope Challenge: Number the envelops from 1-25. The number on the outside of the envelop is what should be deposited. 25 envelops = $325; 50 envelops = $1275
    • Penny Challenge: Day 1 deposit $0.01, Day 2 deposit $0.02, Day 365 deposit $3.65. After making 365 deposits, total savings $668
    • 30 Day Challenge: If you are on a time crunch and want to save quickly, Day 1 save $1, Day 2 save $2, Day 30 save $30. Total Savings $465

    Keep in mind, the right savings plan for your family can be a hybrid of any of the above, or make adjustments to meet the goal amount for summer camp.

    LASTLY, MAKE SAVING FUN!

    Draw a thermometer, create a shadow box, make deposits at your family meetings. You want to keep everyone encouraged and excited about what you’re working towards. Having a physical representation showing where they are in saving for summer camp can help a lot!

    Do you have family meetings about the money impact of your children’s desires? What money saving strategy do you think your kids will engage the most with?

     

    Are you ready to make sure your kids (and your bank accounts) have the summer of their dreams? Check out these incredible tips on saving for summer camp that are sure to make your budgets a breeze.

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    10 Must-Read Books For Black Girls

    If you didn’t already know, black girls are lit. We are creative, intelligent, magical, and just darn right fabulous from our head to our toes!  From our kinky, coily textured hair to the array of chocolate skin tones kissed by only the sun’s rays, black girls are everything to be desired. The crazy thing is, not every black girl knows this about themselves.  What they see in the mirror may be contrary to popular belief.  Our daughters, granddaughters, sisters, and nieces can sometimes struggle with challenges of self-identity. Self-esteem and knowing their self-worth in a world that was just not made for their benefit is truly difficult.

     

    Being a little black girl in the world today is pretty hard. Make it a little bit easier by giving them one of these 10 books to read that celebrates little black girls today.

    Courtesy of unsplash.com

    Building Up Black Girls Matters

    To empower someone starts from within.  Building up the self-esteem of young black girls happens when we mirror what they already have inside of them.  There is so much material being created for our chocolate youth that is hidden in plain site that features them in ways that are courageous, intelligent, and capable of all things.  Having two daughters of my own now, I make sure to let them know every chance I get just how amazing they truly are.  One of the many ways I do so is by reading books with them that they can relate to on a societal and cultural level.

    Being a little black girl in the world today is pretty hard. Make it a little bit easier by giving them one of these 10 books to read that celebrates little black girls today.

    Representation Matters

    I don’t recall being presented with reading material that defined characters that represented who I was or what I looked like in order to be comfortable in my own skin.  Growing up, I wasn’t around other children that looked like me or shared the same background.  I felt ashamed of the texture of my hair and even the curvy shape that my hips and thighs gave me and I desired to be something I could never be.

    Being a little black girl in the world today is pretty hard. Make it a little bit easier by giving them one of these 10 books to read that celebrates little black girls today.

    Courtesy of Unpsplash.com

    Flipping the pages of books that described a brown skinned girl that had thick lips and a wide nose like mine would have made me feel like I was not so alone.  I would have been able to recognize that my beauty came from the unique features I possessed both inside and out.  I could see myself wandering the pages of imaginary adventures of girls like me that were princesses, scientists, presidents, or just another neighborhood girl loving who she was just the way she was.

    Being a little black girl in the world today is pretty hard. Make it a little bit easier by giving them one of these 10 books to read that celebrates little black girls today.

    10 Must-Read Books For Black Girls

    I Love My Hair

    I Am a Pretty Little Black Girl

    Ada Twist Scientist

    Olivia and the Land of Extra Ordinary

    I Like Myself

    Happy to be Nappy

    When God Made You

    Penny and the Magic Puffballs

    Willemina Rule!: Rule #6: How to Face Up to the Class Bully

    No Mirrors in My Nana’s House

    Please Baby Please

     

    What are some of your favorite books that highlight black girls?

     

     

     

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    The Atlanta Kids Obstacle Challenge

    I received compensation for this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

    After I had Mini, I became a runner. Like most new moms, I wanted to lose weight but I set the goal of running with the intention of weight loss being a by product. One of my favorite things to do was obstacle course races. In fact, I tried to ask my now husband out on a date to do one–he declined though now he’s completed 3 with me. I was so excited to see that the Kids Obstacle Challenge was coming to town so Mini could finally participate!

    The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered!

    See, Mini would come with me to all my races and sit on the sidelines with whomever I could get to watch her. I remember her telling me that she wanted to do one and I couldn’t wait for the day that she was old enough to register her. And now she is. I kept it a secret from her until the day before because i knew she would drive me crazy with her anticipation to run.

    The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered!

    Kids Obstacle Challenge

    We opted to do the non-competitive race only because we had ballet early the morning of the race. I had another surprise for Mini–her bestie, play sister and my bonus baby was going to be doing it with her! My best friend and I got the dads to do the race with them so we got to sit on the sidelines this time cheering.

    The Race

    I got the download of the race from Mini once she caught her breath from running. It was a total of 2 miles and the obstacles started out with the ball pit. She said it was pretty challenging to make it through the pit but they did it. There was lots of climbing but the most important thing was that she didn’t fall. It took them about 40 minutes to complete the race and they loved every bit of it–especially the mud pit that was waiting for them at the end.

    The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered! The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered! The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered!

    There was a really challenging hill at the end and they conquered that easily! Now I will say that Mini’s uncle David is in the Army and I could see how his coaching made the course doable for them. Either way, I was grateful that it wasn’t me getting muddy–this time.

    The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered! The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered! The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered!

    This was a lot of fun for the kids. It wore them out physically and made lots of memories for them. The sponsors were pretty great too. We got to try these new Lara bars that were pretty tasty. They weren’t dry or chalky like many protein bars. And Natalie’s Juice was there. When I tell you that their lemonade is exactly what you need on hot Atlanta days, i mean it! The biggest sponsor was Razor–my kids LOVE their scooters and I love how many options they have that are inclusive of their age range.
    The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered! The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered!The Kids Obstacle Challenge offers great family fun for those who are super athletic and those not so athletic! Check out a review of the one in Atlanta here and then get registered!

    Overall, this was a great day. I can’t wait for them to come back to Atlanta so I can do the run with them next time!

    Are you ready to have a family adventure with the Kids Obstacle Challenge?
    Check out their next stops here and get registered!

     

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