Our Five Ring Circus: August 2019

Saturday, August 17, 2019

What We're Loving Lately

What We're Loving Lately

I received some of the items below free for review. I only share my genuine favorites on my blog. 

With 7 people living in our home, we try a lot of new products! Some things are just okay, and some things end up on our favorites list. Every so often, I share a roundup of the things my family is loving lately!

On our list is a functional item, a must have baby item, a new shampoo that I'm currently using, a new TV show for young kids, and wellness and self-care products. I try to include something for everyone! Here's what we're loving lately...

Thursday, August 15, 2019

4 UNIQUE WAYS TO USE POST-ITS DURING THE SCHOOL YEAR

4 UNIQUE WAYS TO USE POST-ITS DURING THE SCHOOL YEAR

This post is sponsored by 3M but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

Summer Break flew by, and it’s almost time to send the kids back to school! We’re enjoying the last few weeks of Summer Break, but we’re also starting to shop for the upcoming school year. With four kids heading back to school, we have a lot to buy - clothing, shoes, gym clothes, backpacks, lunchboxes, school supplies, and more!



The beginning of the school year can be so exciting, but then reality hits. We’re incredibly busy from September through June, so I’m definitely a much bigger fan of our more peaceful Summers, and the time spent with my kids. But as much as I’m in denial, the countdown to the first day of school is on!

Shopping for back to school can be an undertaking with 5 kids, but it helps to make a list and get it done early. Staying organized, and having a stash of school supplies for home use is the key to my sanity during the school year!


Find out which item tops my list of school supplies for home use, the five unique ways to use them, and how you can get a night out at the movies just from purchasing school supplies!

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Coen's Birth Story - The Delivery

Coen's Birth Story - The Delivery

Time goes by so quickly when you have kids! It goes by even faster with each child that you add to your family. It seems like we were just anxiously waiting for our fifth baby to be born, and now he's 5 months old. I wish time would slow down! I already shared the first part of Coen's birth story - the labor. Now it's time for the delivery!


I haven't shared the details of the delivery with many people, other than to say that it was brutal! It took months to recover, and I'm still dealing with nerve pain. Let me just say that if Coen was my first child, he would be an ONLY child!

Here's where we left off:  Unfortunately, there wasn't enough time to get that epidural running again, so for the first time ever, I would get to experience a natural delivery. It wasn't what I wanted, and I was already in enough pain, but there was no turning back. Our baby was coming - NOW - whether we were ready or not! And soon, everyone in the room was going to be very surprised by what came next...

Monday, August 12, 2019

Sparkling Black Raspberry Float

Sparkling Black Raspberry Float

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

In a few short weeks, my crew is going to be heading back to school! My kids are starving when they get home, and don't always make the healthiest choices, so I try to plan a few snacks each week. A Sparking Black Raspberry Float is a tasty, low calorie treat that they will love!


I absolutely love raspberries, so I'm a big fan of anything raspberry-flavored, and my kids agree! This refreshing, 4-ingredient float is made with delicious frozen yogurt and Sparkling Ice Black Raspberry. Although parents would love it, too, they just might want to opt for an extra boost of energy instead. The beginning of the school year is draining for kids, teachers, and mom and dad!

I'm not quite ready to trade our (somewhat) calm Summer days for the chaos of the school year, but it's time to start planning those afterschool snacks. I will definitely be adding this treat to the afterschool snack rotation. The Sparkling Black Raspberry Float has so much going for it - it's quick and easy to make, it's inexpensive, it's refreshing, and it's absolutely delicious!

Sunday, August 11, 2019

HundrED Spotlight on Pittsburgh - MAKESHOP

HundrED Spotlight on Pittsburgh - MAKESHOP


This post was written in partnership with The Motherhood and sponsored by The Grable Foundation. Photos courtesy of Remake Learning and Ben Filio. 


Do you love where you live? I definitely do! Pittsburgh is a wonderful place to raise a family! Did you know Pittsburgh is a world leader in learning and education innovation?

We might not have the best weather in the world, but there are so many amazing things that makes Pittsburgh an ideal place to raise children. Pittsburgh has some of the best museums, hospitals, universities, libraries, and schools. In fact, Pittsburgh had the honor of being selected for HundreED's first spotlight in North America! 

HundrED is a global orgnization, which is based in Finland, that aims to research and share education innovations around the world. This year, HundrED has been collaborating with The Grable Foundation and Remake Learning to highlight the unique educational innovations coming out of the Pittsburgh region. Pittsburgh was selected because of the education innovation happening here. HundrED selected 12 Pittsburgh area programs to spotlight, and will be sharing the most inspiring models and ideas in K-12 education with their international audience.

Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Ocean Sensory Bin

Ocean Sensory Bin

This post contains affiliate links. If you click through, and make a purchase, I will earn a commission. Everything I recommend has been tested by me or my family!


Everybody seems to love Shark Week! Liam definitely loves sharks, so I put together this easy Ocean Sensory Bin for my littles to enjoy last week. It was a very busy week, so I didn't put as much detail into it as I usually do, but sometimes simple is plenty enough!


Liam happily scooped an poured for hours, and Lily even joined in! Baby Coen is starting to put everything in his mouth, so he had to skip this one. We put him in his UpSeat, sat him beside the bin, and gave him a baby-safe shark to teethe on!

The Ocean Sensory Bin was a big hit, and was so easy to prepare! (Spoiler Alert: I bought a kit on Amazon Prime for this one!) Although I will eventually have to throw away the water beads, we can keep the ocean animals for later use!

Monday, August 5, 2019

Happy 8th Birthday, Lily!

8th Birthday

On Saturday, August 3rd, Lily celebrated her 8th Birthday! It's so hard to believe my baby girl is 8 years old. I swear, I just had her, but she grew up far too quickly. I just want her to stay little, sweet, and innocent for as long as possible!


Lily's Birthday was a busy one, and she had to share her special day with a family event. My family reunion is always the first Saturday in August, so every few years, Lily's birthday is the same day as the reunion. She didn't seem to mind one bit. She celebrated her birthday with some of the people she loves most, and had the loudest happy birthday song! She said her birthday was so much fun!

One of our birthday traditions is to have a mini photoshoot, and answer questions in a yearly birthday interview. I love seeing how their answers change from year to year, and I love watching them grow! Motherhood truly is bittersweet - you want to watch your children grow, but you also want them to stay little. I honestly love my kids' birthdays so much more than my own, so we make birthdays a BIG deal around here!

Here's how we celebrated Lily's 8th Birthday...