Happy New Year!

HAPPY NEW YEAR!  I have had the urge to write for quite some time now, but then life happened.

I’ve had several drafts ready to go regarding toddler stuff or fashion stuff but I had to simply just write about life as of lately and being a working mommy/wifey.

I’ve previously posted that I’m constantly riddled with working mommy/wife guilt.  Has it gotten better?  Nope, but it’s bearable.  I think I’ve come to the conclusion that it’ll never go away and that’s no one else’s fault but my own.  I shouldn’t feel bad about having to take care of my family whether that be financially or emotionally.  What matters is that I’m giving all that I can.

I have been quite busy at work for past 3 months.  That includes logging in time over the holidays.  Unfortunately, I have the opposite schedule of a tax accountant or a traditional auditor.  I do work for a public accounting firm; however, my busy season started at the end of September and doesn’t end until February.  There are weeks that are a little more slow-paced than others.  There are weeks that are intense but every week is different.  Every day is different.  I’d like to think that I’ve dealt with it all day by day, situation by situation.  The one thing that’s keeping me strong and empowered through all this, even if I am busy and overwhelmed, is my family.  My time with them is EXACTLY what I need to de-stress and calm down to push through the work week.  Sometimes I wish I could give more at home (Trying to control and do everything for them.  Be very Type A.), but frankly we’re happy, so why fix something that not broke.  Sure the laundry doesn’t get folded and put away immediately or the dishes pile up some days, but we’re fine.  The attention and love I give them is more than enough.  My husband has been the MOST amazing and supportive person.  When I start expressing my feelings of guilt, he tells me to stop because he’s not complaining nor is Eva.  He tells me to take the time to do what I need to.  And while I still feel guilt deep down at the pit of my stomach, that weight on my shoulder is lifted.  They are simply the best.

And while I previously said if it’s not broken, don’t fix it, I’m still trying to find the right schedule for me that doesn’t burn me out, carves out some me-time, keeps me productive at work and that works around my family’s schedule.  I want to have the energy (spiritually, emotionally, and physically) to be the best mommy/wifey/working professional that I can.  Sounds so idealistic right?  Of course, there are some things that need to give for that to happen.  Get more sleep, yet wake up early to workout and to get to work earlier.  Maybe lessen the time working at night after Eva’s goes down for bed (I try not to work at home until she’s asleep.  My poor husband, sometimes (not always) our QT gets invaded with work).  I’m getting there and realizing what works day by day.  I know nothing will ever be as perfect as I idealize, but as long as we’re all happy… I can’t ask for anything more.  They are my everything.

So in light of that, I’m going to deem this year to be gentler to myself.  My goal is not to be so hard on myself and while I’m better at that than when I was in my 20s, there’s still room for improvement.  Here’s to whatever makes us happy and having a healthy new year!

And with that said, I’m going to try to publish at least one post once a week this year.  Writing makes me happy.  Being creative makes me happy.  Cooking and being creative in the kitchen and sharing all that with you makes me happy.  I put this blog aside last year to figure out how working outside the home was working for me and my family.  I hope to post more than once a week, but I’m determine to have at least 52 posts up this year.  🙂  Until next week.

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Terrific 2’s here we come!

Yes folks, Miss Eva has turned 2!  I still can’t believe she’s been in our lives for 2 years!  Wasn’t she just a baby?  These past 6 months have been interesting as her personality, both good and bad, are coming through.  Moments of such sweetness (totally making my heart melt), moments of hilariousness (the random dancing kills me. so my child.) and then moments of trantrums (totally testing my patience. trying so hard to keep calm.).  Part of her trantrums are caused by 1) not always understanding what she wants (she’s not speaking in complete sentences, but communicates pretty effectively.) 2) she hates when she doesn’t get what she wants (we’re working on giving her options to compromise right now).  I’d like to say her terrible 2’s have started early or so I’m telling myself.  To put a positive spin on it, my friend called it the terrific two’s (she herself has a daughter that is the same age as Eva).  I’ll take it!  It’ll be an interesting year but I can’t wait to see her grow.  I look forward to sharing my experiences with her here along with any tips and tricks that work for us along the way!

Here are some photos from her birthday celebrations!

Playing with her new presents the morning of her birthday

Sofia the First dress cupcake cake (Inspired by Pinterest post)

Took her to the boardwalk to ride some rides and enjoy some yummy food!

More cupcakes.  These are for her birthday celebration at daycare/school tomorrow!

HAPPY 2nd BIRTHDAY EVA!

Nessas Loves – Mommy, Baby, Home

This is a long time coming, but as promised, here’s the mommy, baby, and home edition of Nessa’s Loves.  Enjoy!

Mommy & toddler loves

MOMMY/TODDLER

Disposable Placemats – I previously talked about it in my baby’s first year must haves post.  My sister in law even grabbed some for my nephew (who is a couple of months younger than Eva).  They’re just convenient for a toddler who is learning how to feed themself and easy for clean up.  Plus it keeps eating in public restaurants for the little ones somewhat sanitary.  Side notes:  If you’re going to Chick-fil-a, they have these in stock for the little ones.  At some locations you have to ask for it.  At other locations they’re in the same area as the napkins and condiments.  Random mom tip.  😉

Organic Baby/Toddler Snacks – I can be a bit crazy when it comes to Eva’s food (I’m sure the teacher’s at her daycare think I’m crazy).  When she started eating, I started buying organic dairy products, some meats, and fruits and veggies (trying to follow the dirty dozen rule to save some money).  I will stand in food aisles and read labels for several minutes to make sure what I’m purchasing is good for her to eat.  Not too salty.  Not too sweet.  I try to stay away for artificial flavoring.  When she was first starting to eat, I only gave her homemade baby snacks or organic baby snacks.  Now that she’s older, we give her a mix between toddler friendly (of course reading the labels to make sure there’s not too much sugar or salt) and adults snacks (yes, she can have that cookie if she’s good).  Everything in moderation.  We keep her own set of snacks in a drawer of the kitchen (which she constantly runs to when she’s hungry).  Some of which are Ella’s Kitchen, such as Puffits or Nibbly Fingers (which are strawberry and apple granola bars), or Earth’s Best, such as the Sesame Street crackers, cookies, and graham crackers, or graham crackers, or Plum Organic Teensy Fruit Berries.

Toy chest – Eva originally had a crate that her former Nanny made her.  Of course, she outgrew the crate and her toys were spilling out of it (she has way too many stuffed animals), so we bit the bullet and bought a toy chest/bin.  Originally I wanted a bookshelf and toychest in one; however, after much researching we decided on this.  I’m not a huge fan that everything is out in the open, but it makes it so much easier for Eva to see all of her toys and grab them to play plus all the toys get equal playing time.  Of course, she still has her favorites.

FOOD/HOUSEHOLD ITEMS

Blendtec blender – This is my splurge item.  After making so many smoothies in the Magic Bullet and replacing the rotar multiple times, I decided it was worth it to purchase a nice high quality blender.  We have a Cuisinart blender and it works well, but I wasn’t satisfied that it left my smoothies chunky and at times leaving some fruit whole (ARGH!).  I was going to take the Vitamix blender my parents purchased several years back, but I saw a deal for a refurbished Blendtec blender during Black Friday that I couldn’t pass up.  I have been LOVING IT.  It makes my smoothies sooooooooo much smoother, almost juice like.  I’m OBSESSED with it.  I make green smoothies or regular fruit smoothies or fruit smoothie bowls almost everyday with this thing.  I’ve definitely gotten my money’s worth.

Green Smoothies/Smoothies/Smoothie Bowls – Last year I went on a green smoothie kick and I’m still loving them, especially after I bought my Blendtec blender.  It’s such a great way to get both fruit and vegetables into your body.  Eva loves them too.  She’s been drinking green smoothies/smoothies since she was 1, so she’s gotten used to the semi-grassy taste (which I try to mask with bananas or lemons or other fruit when possible).  Side note:  Eva doesn’t drink anything but water, milk or mommy’s smoothies.  She doesn’t know what fruit juices/boxes taste like, so she’s not familiar with the taste.   Salad in a cup or multivitamins in liquid form.  I’m still experimenting with several recipes and hope to post a couple here soon.  Smoothie Bowls are my new obsession and addition to my breakfast menu.  I follow a ton of healthy food/fit instragrammers and saw that some of them were doing smoothie bowls.  It’s thicker than a regular smoothie and can sometimes be sorbet like.  Top with some granola or fruit and you’re good to go!  I’m still experimenting but I’ll be sure to post those recipes soon as well.  

Acai bowl topped with banana, strawberry, and granola

Aladdin mason jars – So they’re not real mason jars.  They’re insulated tumblers.  They’re large enough to put my smoothies into.  They’re definitely not travel friendly as they’re wide but when I’m at home they’re perfect.  I am able to pour most of my smoothie in one cup and any extras go into Eva’s Take and Toss cups.

LifeFactor water bottle – I’m in LOVE with a glass water bottle as I HATE how plastic water bottles give somewhat of an after taste (even the BPA water bottles).  I liked the metal water bottles, but I have yet to find a bottle brush that can really clean the bottle.  I previously broke my other glass water bottle, so when I saw that this water bottle had a rubber case, I had to get it.  During work days, I use this to store my green smoothies and run out the door.  When I’m done, I rinse it out and place water into it for the day.

Fruit infused water bottles.  Let’s face it.  Drinking water isn’t always fun, so infusing your water with fruit is a nice refreshing change.  I take this water bottle with me to work every other day.  Combinations I like to put into the infuser:  lemon and strawberry or raspberry, strawberry and basil, mint cucumber and lime, lime, and lemon.  I’ve even made Dr. Oz’s fat flush water using this water bottle.  The best thing about it, no added sugars to your beverage!