Friday, February 1, 2019

The Best Winter Books for Kids

The Best Winter Books for Kids

Like much of the country, we were hit with REALLY cold temps from the polar vortex! While we didn't get hit as hard as many others, those negative temps don't happen often in Pittsburgh. The -20 windchill shut down our schools, and my kids were so excited to get three days off in a row! We were snuggled up in the warmth of our home for the past few days, so it seemed like the perfect time to share our Winter Book Crate and our picks for the best winter books for kids! 


I'm an avid reader, so I fill our home with books! I think developing a love for reading is incredibly important, and I'm working hard to raise readers. I introduce books to my children when they are infants, read to them every day, encourage their love of reading, and rarely say no when they ask for a book. We support school book fairs, purchase from the Scholastic flyers, visit our library regularly, and have books in every room in our home.

I shared our seasonal/holiday book crate on the blog before, and it's a beloved staple in our living room! I rotate the books every season and every holiday, and my kids love reading the books that fill it. Once the Christmas books were packed away, the book crate got filled with their Winter favorites! (In our opinion), here are the BEST Winter books for kids...

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Life With Four Littles: Weekly Recap

Life With Four Littles: Weekly Recap

Life with four littles - or rather, a teen, a tween, and two littles - is always interesting. There is never a dull moment, and in just a few weeks, we'll be adding a newborn to the mix! It seems like baby boy is taking after his brothers, and wants to join the family early. Although our 5th and final baby isn't due until March 14th, I think he's going to be joining us in February...especially after the events of the past few days!


Although it's true that there's never a dull moment, this was a calmer than usual week for us. A pulled abdominal muscle and pregnancy progression forced us - or at least ME - to slow down for a few days. Because of that, this just might be our most boring week yet, which is evidenced by the lack of pictures that I took!

Here's a glimpse at life with four littles last week...

Sunday, January 27, 2019

Delicious Burritos with a Healthy Twist + GIVEAWAY

Delicious Burritos with a Healthy Twist


DISCLAIMER: I received this product for free from MomsMeet to use and post my honest opinions. Compensation for this post was provided and this page may  contain affiliate links.


Like many people, I like the new year to get off to a healthy start! I choose healthier foods, make exercise a priority, take my vitamins, and try to get enough sleep each night. But like many moms, I often struggle with eating balanced meals, because my big family is very busy and often on the go!

Lunch is my biggest struggle. It's just easier to grab a healthy snack like a piece of fruit, cut vegetables, or string cheese, but I know that meal isn't very balanced. I try to avoid frozen convenience meals, because they aren't very healthy. Now there's a delicious, fast, and HEALTHY option: Alpha Foods Burritos!


These delicious 100% plant-based burritos are great for on the go, the perfect addition to any meal, and full of healthy ingredients! Plus, I'm giving away FOUR free product vouchers, so you can try them yourself...

Thursday, January 24, 2019

12 Items Every Hot Tea Lover Needs

12 Items Every Hot Tea Lover Needs


This post is sponsored by Celestial Seasonings but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

Tea or Coffee? It's often a hot topic to debate! As for me, I'm firmly on Team Tea. Considering most Americans are absolutely obsessed with coffee (just look at all the memes, slogans, and coffee shops), I feel like I'm in the minority. I've tried coffee often, but I just can't see what the fuss is all about! I'm all about tea!


I've been a tea drinker since I was a teenager, but it's more of a lifestyle now that I'm older, and part of my daily self-care and wellness routine. Research shows that there are many health benefits of tea, so drinking it is also good for me! I always start my day with a cup of hot tea, sometimes have a second cup after lunch, and wind down with a cup of decaffeinated tea before bed. For me, sipping a hot cup of tea is very comforting!

We are a tea AND coffee household, but I'm the tea lover, and I'm passing my love for hot tea on to my daughters! It's definitely the healthiest choice of many drink options, and will help lead to lifelong wellness habits. Sipping hot tea is also a great, soothing option for self-care and relaxation!

Self Care


Here are the 12 items every hot tea lover needs...

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Sleep Studies 101: The Complete Guide To Your Child's Sleep Study

Celebrating (3)

Sleep disorders are very common these days! It's estimated that 22 million Americans have sleep apnea, and a large number of cases go undiagnosed. More people are having sleep studies done, and if you have a child who has Down syndrome, it is highly likely that your child will have a sleep study by the age of 4. 


We went through this process last January, and I remember feeling so nervous about it the day of the procedure. I had NO idea what to expect, other than from the guidelines I was given to prepare for the sleep study, and even a quick search on Google didn't yield much information. I'm not the only person who looks for advice. One of the most frequently asked questions in my Down syndrome groups is about how to prepare for sleep studies!

Because there isn't much information out there for parents like me, I compiled a complete guide so you and your child can rock their sleep study...

Monday, January 21, 2019

Big Family Life Lately

Big Family Life Lately

Happy Monday! Another January week flew by in our usual whirlwind of chaos and busyness. It's hard to believe we're rapidly approaching the end of the first month of 2019!


We're currently enjoying our second three day weekend in a row. I could REALLY get used to these! I had high hopes to post more to the blog this week, but four kids, pregnancy, and a cold took up most of my time and energy. I have a drafts folder full of almost finished posts, so I hope to get those posted this week. I also hope to pull out my real camera more often this week, because I only took a few pictures over the past week. I'm beginning to think that the constant busyness of my family just isn't going to change!

Here's a glimpse of life over the past week...

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

12 Pregnancy Essentials

Pregnancy Blog

It's hard to believe that there are only two months left until my due date! My 5th and final pregnancy is going by so quickly. Between juggling four kids, and dealing with horrible morning sickness throughout my entire pregnancy, my hands have been more than full!


When you have multiple kids, you reach the point where you know exactly what you need during pregnancy, and what is a complete waste of time! This time around, a few new items came into my life, and I was very grateful to have them. I brainstormed, and decided to share the 12 pregnancy essentials that I can't live without!

Here are the 12 items that every pregnant mama needs...

Monday, January 14, 2019

The Chaos Crew's Weekly Recap

The Chaos Crew's Weekly Recap

Happy Monday! It actually IS a happy Monday, because my kids are off of school today, and my husband is off of work. I would love to say that we're having a relaxing day off, but Dylan has a date with his girlfriend (hold me), and I have a date with the grocery store. BUT...we get to sleep in, and that's a wonderful thing!


The second week of 2019 flew by in a whirlwind of busyness! Germs hit our home this week, too. Stomach cramps hit Lexie on Monday, and Lily on Tuesday. Thankfully, it only lasted a few hours for both of them, and didn't turn into anything else! On Wednesday night, I felt body aches and cold symptoms coming on, and I'm still fighting cold germs. Because I'm pregnant, it's hitting me hard, but it doesn't slow me down one bit! Then again, there's no time to slow down with 4 kids!

Here's a glimpse at our week... 

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

The Best Tools To Organize Your Life

The Best Tools To Organize Your Life

As 2019 begins, I'm really focusing on staying organized. Juggling the schedules of 6 - soon to be 7 - busy people can be very overwhelming! I always seem to start the year off strong, and end up slacking at some point along the way. This year, I'm determined to organize my life, and stick with it so I'm not as stressed and overwhelmed!


I know many people prefer everything to be digital, but I'm a bit old school. I prefer a mix of digital organization tools and physical tools. I'm not ashamed to admit that I am firmly on Team Paper Planner and Wall Calendar! There are definitely some apps that I absolutely love, though!

Here are a few of my "Organize Your Life" favorites right now...

Sunday, January 6, 2019

The First Week of the New Year

Mom Blog Weekly Recap - The First Week of the New Year

We are only six days into 2019, and my crew is exhausted! There was no easing back into a routine after a relaxing winter break. Instead, we just jumped back into it! 


Reality hit on Wednesday. The kids headed back to school, Grant headed back to work, and the holiday bliss was over. Life returned to its usual busyness, complete with basketball practice, dance classes, appointments, early morning basketball games, family dinners, and birthdays!

Here's how the first week of the new year played out...