Wednesday, April 30, 2014

I have big news!

First off, no.  I'm not pregnant.

Lol.  This is blogging news.  Well, and life news - but mainly blogging news.

Many of you remember that last year I attended the BlogHer conference for the first time.  {If you need your memory refreshed, you can see what I wore to the conference, the hotel & the food, the sessions & the parties, the expo & the swag, and my top tips for BlogHer newbies/reader Q&A at those links!}

Well, this year, I will not only be attending - but I will also be speaking at the conference.

I'm Going to BlogHer '14!

Holy whoa, people.

I am ridiculously excited to be able to attend BlogHer and am honored that I was chosen to speak at one of the Geek Bar sessions regarding blog analytics!  I'm fairly certain that I just about fell off my chair when I received word that I would be speaking and cannot even express how amazing and cool this opportunity is for me.  I had an absolute blast last year at the conference and learned so many new things and cannot wait to not only attend again but also to share a few of the blogging tidbits that I use daily!

This also means that I'll be flying to California this summer - which will be the third time away from my very adorable shadow Little Man ever {the first was BlogHer'13 and the second was while in the hospital birthing Little Lady} and the first time ever away from Little Lady, my snuggle bunny who nurses around the clock and definitely does not sleep through the night yet.

Let's all send up a silent prayer for happy baby vibes for DH, even though he's great with the kids and probably doesn't need it!

But, the most crazy part is that I'll be flying.

I haven't been on an airplane in almost seven years.  And the last time I flew I ended up in the ER with an anxiety-induced migraine in which I lost partial vision in one eye.

So basically I'm astronomically excited and also simultaneously terrified.

Anyone have breastfeeding-friendly anxiety medication recommendations?  Lol.


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Monday, April 28, 2014

Our Easter 2014 photos!

We were really lucky this Easter and my awesome parents were able to come down to visit with us.

They were so lucky they took our illness home.

Love you - Mom & Dad!

Here's a few photos of our weekend!

Little Man was super excited from the get-go, Little Lady took a little more convincing.

Until she had a Reese cup.

This was our first official Easter egg hunt - not quite sure why we hadn't ever done it in the past.  The kids were both really into it!

Little Lady spent part of the time picking up eggs/candy and then carrying them over to either DH/I or my parents to open before going back for another.

Little Man opened a few as he went but was more trying to obtain as many eggs as possible :)

Once inside, we had a few snuggles.

And then some giggles with Grammy

While the boys had some man discussion at the table.

Hope you all had a WONDERFUL holiday!!!

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Friday, April 25, 2014

Catch the Moment 365 - Days 106 through 112

Wellllll, hey there.

{insert crickets here}

When I sat down to work on this week's CTM post, I completely realized that I hadn't posted since last week's CTM post.  Which is kind of a testament to how crazy it's been around here lately.

For whatever reason, we are all sick {minus DH} again this week.  We've also had family in for the Easter holiday {I have an upcoming photo dump post on that!}, DH was out of town for the week {hence the fact that he is likely super healthy and well-rested after staying the week in a hotel... sigh}, I've been working on two new blogs {one for my babywearing chapter and one industry-specific speech therapy blog}, and I scheduled us unfortunately with eleventy bazillion appointments this week {dentist for both me and the kids, doctor appointments for both of the kids, a babywearing meeting, our music class, preschool co-op, and about a trillion errands}.

Needless to say I've been running around like a sick, tired, crazy person.

I have a few awesome posts upcoming for you all including our Easter photos, the conclusion of the Peepods giveaway, as well a fantastic local review coming up - but here are this week's photos!

106/365:  Little Lady found another pair of glasses in the doctor kit I purchased used off of the marketplace - and is officially obsessed.

107/365: Little Man's mischievous but adorable grin!

108/365:  This photo is obviously horrible quality, but Little Lady was holding my phone while we played a game of tickling.  I kind of love her point of view here.

109/365:  You know, just eatin' my breakfast.  By osmosis.

110/365:  Happy Easter, everyone!  Please excuse the fact that we dressed our kids but yet DH & I rolled out of bed and went into the yard for the egg hunt wearing our pj's from the night before.

111/365:  With the returned sickness, there has been a lot of this going on lately!

112/365:  And here's a preview of the FANTASTIC local music class review upcoming on the blog for our local Kindermusik with Miss Kim!

Check out the other link ups here, and I hope you all had a wonderful Easter holiday!

Nurse Loves Farmer

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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Catch the Moment 365 - Days 99 through 105

So obviously, this post is a little late.

For whatever reason, Friday hit this week and I completely had spaced that it was even Friday.  I've been working on a few side projects that have totally engulfed my spare time {hello, crickets on the blog otherwise!  I promise I'll get back here soon!}.  Our week was also a little off because DH didn't have to work the Friday before Easter for the holiday, so he was home as well.

Even though I had taken all of my daily photos, I hadn't edited any of them or prepped this post.  And, I think a few of the photos might be out of order?  I can't remember, this week was crazy with weather changes and I can't remember which day was which!  So, oops.  Sorry for the tardiness!

99/365: I seriously just love so much how these two play together now.  And also this weather!

100/365: I don't know what it is about baby hats, but for whatever reason these hats and their first pair of toddler shoes when they really start walking hold such a special place in my heart.  Both of these hats are for sure ending up in the keepsake boxes I keep for the kids!

101/365: Pure joy - in the form of a curtain peekaboo game.

102/365: Little Lady loves to crawl up on Little Man's toddler bed and just play/sit/read/relax lately.  She's fantastic at getting in and out, which makes me feel a bit more comfortable mentally with the fact that I'm sure {as our resident high motor baby} she will be our crib jumper at some point in the future.

103/365: Jell-o jigglers in the form of a train from his awesomely adorable daddy?  More toddler joy!

104/365: Those baby eyes!!!  I seriously could just smooch this face all darn day long.

105/365:  And since she has been passing out hard after a long morning of play for naps lately, I've been able to steal just a few sweet sleeping baby photos this week!

Want to link up or see other Catch the Moment posts?  Click below!

Nurse Loves Farmer

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Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Peepods Cloth Menstrual Pad Review & Giveaway!

* Disclosure - I was provided items for review by Peepods to facilitate this post.  Opinions are 100% honest and my own!

* Another double disclosure for the queasy or male readers - this is another post about PERIODS.  Walk away now if you need to tune this out.  Lol.

After several long, lovely years of no monthly cycle due to either being pregnant or breastfeeding both of our babies - I finally had a return of my period.  Ugh.  Since that time, I've been researching and trying out more natural options for monthly feminine care - which I have been loving!  {If you're interested in seeing my recent review of the DivaCup - check it out here!}  Today's post, though, is all about the washable, reusable menstrual pads.

Before I chat about that - let's talk about what I despise about typical pads.

#1 - They crinkle.

Nothing like announcing your presence in a pair of leggings or yoga pants like your pad crunching and crinkling in your pants.  Some brands do this more than others, for sure - but I hate that I have to consider how loud a pad is going to be when I make a purchase.

#2 - Speaking of purchasing... they are expensive!

Over a lifetime, one woman can use thousands of pads or tampons - costing TONS of money.  When I was using pads and tampons, I would spend anywhere from $10-20 per cycle on menstrual products.  If we take the average of that at $15, that cost me almost $200 per year.

#3 - It's a huge waste of materials.

If you think about the cost of production {over, and over, and over}, the marketing of these products, and the transportation to deliver them to your store each month, for each woman, for a lifetime - it adds up.  Then let's take into account that you use valuable resources making trips out to pick up these products each month.  And then on top of that consider that a pad comes in a large box or bag and that inside that each pad is wrapped with one piece of plastic, as well as often has another piece of paper attached to the sticky portion, as well as two other pieces of paper if you have a pad with wings - and we're talking a whole lot of waste even before you actually use the pad.

It's a ton of waste for something you're going to throw away as well typically not even a few hours after you've opened it.

#4 - They just don't feel right.

If any of you men are still reading right about now {why haven't you run away?} - to understand the discomfort of a pad, I'd recommend you buy a diaper, pour some liquid into it, and then sit in it for an hour or two.  It's really uncomfortable.  And - I don't know if this is just me? - several pad brands cause me to break out in a rash.  When I was younger it took me a little while to realize that this was directly related to the pads I was wearing during my period, but each month like clockwork I would get a super uncomfortable rash whenever I would break out that old trusty bag of plastic pads.  Gross.

After we had children, the idea of reusable, cloth pads began to sound more and more comfortable to me over time.  I was so over plastic drugstore pads - and it was time for me to be completely done with them.  I mean, we already wash cloth diapers a few times a week anyway - so would washing a few reusable pads really be that big of a deal?

The lovely Amber at Peepods was so awesome to send me a set of her period pads - and I was really excited to try them out!  {Peepods also makes postpartum pads, nursing pads, and incontinence pads as well for all of your mama needs!}

As you can see above, Peepods come in a variety of colors {and sizes!}.  There are pantyliners, day pads, and overnight pads.  One of the features I absolutely love is that the wings are a separate fabric from the actual pad, so that there is no method of leaking from the pad down the wing.  The pads also snap into place around your undies, so there's no need for any adhesive to keep them in place.

Initially, I was concerned about being grossed out with what I saw on the pad - but honestly, I received the espresso color and I can barely see anything actually on the pad.

Once you've used the pad, they fold up and you can snap the wings back around the front to hold it closed.  You can then throw the pads into a washable wetbag.  {The Deluxe Sets of pads from Peepods include a Planetwise wetbag with the set - which is a fantastic addition!}  As I mentioned earlier, I just throw the pads into our dirty diaper laundry, and wash from there.  Outside of DH getting really confused and putting them away with our inserts and doublers - we've had no problems with washing!

I know that a lot of women I've spoken with are a little bit squeamish, and for those I would definitely recommend at least giving a Peepod pad/DivaCup or even Peepod and tampon combo a try.  The Peepods are really fantastic for a stand alone menstrual product, but they're also my number one pick as a liner to wear under my DivaCup on heavier days and would be a MUCH better way to live a little more ecofriendly and a little more chemical-free even if you do still choose to wear tampons!

After reviewing both reusable menstrual cups and pads for the blog - I can definitely say I am completely done with both pads and tampons.  Unfortunately, I have a somewhat large stash of pads and tampons I hadn't yet used.  Each month since receiving the Peepods and DivaCup, I keep telling myself I'll use the tampons and plastic pads - and each month after 1-2 uses of those items I switch back to the Peepods and the DivaCup.  I just can't bring myself to use anything but the reusable stuff anymore!  I am completely sold and if you all have questions beyond what I've discussed in both this and the DivaCup post - please either post a comment or send me a PM!  I'd be happy to help with any of your questions!

Now for the fun part for you all - the giveaway!  Enter below to win a set of three period pads for yourself!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Friday, April 11, 2014

Catch the Moment 365 - Days 92 through 98

Okay, I really need to get better at actually taking my camera places.  The last few photos are from my iPhone - so those were on the move.  But most times, I leave the camera at home and totally miss out on photos of us actually doing real things outside of our kitchen/dining room.  I'm definitely going to be working on that in the next few weeks as the weather is so much nicer!

92/365: Little Man has been loving on all kinds of pom poms this week for tot school.  We've actually started to do a few computer games in our tot school routine as well - which he is loving.  Little Man is super into the technology while I prefer the tangible/tactile play for learning - so we meet somewhere in the middle!

93/365:  This sweet baby and her bows, I swear I just melt.  I've been kind of obsessed with Little Lady's bows and have maybe just a few in a ton of colors for her.  She loves wearing bows, glasses, any kind of accessory.  A lot of the time, Little Lady pulls the bow out initially, looks at it for a moment, and then asks me to put it back in again.

94/365: Someone is going to have to hold me - for like a week - when Little Man finally stops sucking his thumb.

95/365: I absolutely love sunsets in our backyard across the cornfields.  The sky turns from blue to purple to this beautiful orange color every single night.

96/365: When did my littler baby get so big?  Seriously, she looks like a kid here!

97/365: My sweet towhead putting together his plane, and then taking it apart, and then putting it back together again.

98/365:  Oh, you know.  Just taking my owl for a walk!

Nurse Loves Farmer

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