Nighty Night

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Morning routine. You’ll find article upon article if you page through fitness and lifestyle magazines, quarry Google for productivity boosters, or dig into the habits of highly successful people. Nearly everyone has a morning routine of sorts. Even if it is isn’t the healthiest.

I first began developing a morning ritual back in high school! Yes, I was a high-level, narcotic planner even then! I remember writing out a very detailed morning routine my senior year. It was complete with what time my alarm was set to go off, how many minutes were allotted to ‘waking up,’ when I’d begin those necessary morning time tasks (teeth brushing and using the bathroom), what time I’d begin my yoga flow or other 15-30 minute workout, when I needed to hop in the shower to get ready for school, etc, etc, etc . . . Embarrassingly enough, I recall—with such clarity that my face gets hot thinking about it even now!—my step-mom coming across this cherished list and commenting on how I better not lose my life schedule or I wouldn’t be able to live . . . But I digress! This has nothing to do with my point. 

I haven’t ever really focused my energy on creating a nighttime ritual. I’ve read an article here and there on the importance of limiting screen time at night, or about not working out within 3 hours of going to bed, and on other pre-bed no-nos. And like the majority of information taken in, I read and mentally dispose of the content within minutes, hours, or days.

As a new mom, I’ve learned the importance and necessity of creating a sleepytime routine for my little dude. A predictable set of events that cues his little brain to begin winding down and relaxing, promoting peaceful rest. My own bedtime routine, however, is non-existent!

To be honest, I am a mess come the day’s end. When I will head to bed always seems to be a mystery. It’s dependant on when I’ve finished working for the night (as this is really the only time I can get productive work done), how late we’re eating, if I’m getting an evening workout in, or what the hubs and I have planned for the night (aka if we’re marathoning Bobby Flay or Worst Cooks). 

Creating structure in my evening I realize, is just as important to my health as how I begin my day. While I can fall asleep at the drop of a pin these days, creating space to wind down and relax is still vital to promoting restful sleep. And so, that is precisely what I aim to do over the next few weeks or so. No dramatic changes that will inevitably be impossible to hold myself to. Just adding a few things to my nightly routine to create more of a defined ritual.

  • Drinking a warm cup of digestion-promoting tea after dinner.
  • Putting my phone down for the night between 9:30pm and 10pm. In all honesty, I am not calling, texting, or emailing anyone that late, and won’t be responding to calls, texts, or emails that late unless it’s an emergency.
  • Reading only a physical book if any at all before bed. Sometimes I like to wind down with a little reading, but since I read on my phone 97% of the time, this habit will need to change.
  • Trying my absolute best to unplug and log off from any and all work tasks within one hour of going to bed. This will be the toughest I fear.
  • Finish eating dinner 2-3 hours before bedtime. Another tough one, as this is the one meal the hubs and I get to enjoy with each other. He gets home right before little man’s bedtime, so we wait until baby’s down for the night so that we can actually eat together. Add in the fact that we eat homecooked food more often than not. A great habit, but it can delay dinner even further.
  • And working out also falls within the 2-3 hour before bedtime window.

This is going to be a huge challenge for me! I can already foresee that. My aim is not for perfection, but for healthful changes!



New Year. Same Girl.

the down-low

I probably say this every year, and I will say it again: I’m not big on New Year’s resolutions. Never really have been. At least not along the thread of the norm. The idea of changing in order to be better. I get the intent behind it, I guess, but what I hear is: You aren’t good enough, and therefore, MUST change!

What I am a fan of is goal-setting. Tomayto, tomahto? Perhaps. But I don’t think so. The difference I see is that I LIKE ME. I’ve growth rather fond of myself over the past 32 years (and counting). And while I believe there is always room for tweaks and growth—maybe a little lacquer to freshen things up as I age—I don’t think 2017 me (or the me of previous years) is half bad. And therefore, I don’t want to transform her into a completely new & improved version . . .  

This year, my goal list was drafted up in about 3 minutes. Maybe it’s because becoming a mom has forced my brain to cough up ideas at a much quicker speed than before. Brain: You either have something to contribute in 2.5 seconds, or you don’t and baby now needs attending to, so the moment for genius has now passed. The end . . . Or perhaps, since I’m already working on everything listed, they just naturally came spilling from my brain. Then again, there’s the idea that mom life has actually fried my brain and I have no new thoughts to contribute. So the ease of these thoughts is actually due to reduced creative capacity.

Whatever the case, I embrace it!

So without further dilly-dallying . . .

*drum roll, please*

I present to you, my 2018 G.O.A.L.S.

  • Lean further into faith. Daily study through a mix of: the Verse of the Day delivered right to my phone & watch, SRT guided readings, daily devotionals sent to my inbox, and podcasts. 
  • Be present for my family. Limiting phone and computer use when I’m with Bubs and/or the hubs. Even if it means not taking as many pictures, or staying up-to-date with calls, texts, social media, etc . . .
  • Embracing the fact that my post-baby body is different. Stamina. Tone. Proportions. And realizing that none of this is bad or ugly or not enough. Not focusing on numbers: weight, size.
  • Living to be my healthiest. Not my slimmest. Fastest. Most toned. Or any other variant of not good enough.
  • Eating for health and for happiness. Banishing C.H.E.A.T. from my tongue and thoughts. Fueling up with what makes my body and mind FEEL good.
  • Read! Real Life is the key to this year’s book goal. 15. That’s 1 book a month, with 3 more sprinkled in throughout the year. Too basic for some. Realistic for where I’m at in life right now.
  • Nurturing my freelance business. Being mindful that my focus is still on Baby. Significant growth may not be in the cards for this year, and that is okay. If it is, then wonderful.

I always hear the phrase, “This will be my best year yet!” around this time of the year. For me, the past several years have been wonderful. I’m not looking to top 2017 but instead, build on the happiness that is in my life.



Don’t Blink


I remember my first 2017 post with a clarity that makes me wonder how this year has already come to a close! Is tomorrow really Jan 1st of 2018?

Kenny Chesney song anyone?

Every year end, I like to take a mental inventory—for lack of a better word—of the events that made up the past year. This year, I’m called to look back on how my world has evolved over the past three years . . .


After nearly 7 years of dating, we took the plunge into married life.


My dude took a huge leap and began a brand new career.


We purchased our first ever home together and found out that our family was growing by one!


Life as we knew it changed forever! When we became parents a whole 6 weeks earlier than expected, I learned a great deal of patience, leaned further into faith, and reconnected with being thankful for everything, from victories to challenges.



What awaits our little trio in the new year?

The future is a crisp, white page just waiting for us to write our story.

And I can’t wait!



I Am Enough


Mom. Wife. Sister. Aunt. Daughter. Dad. Husband. Brother. Uncle. Son. Friend. Employee. Boss. Citizen.

We wear many hats on any given day. Hats that require our energy. Energy to care for others. To hold down a business. To make a living.

In the midst of it all, it’s easy to feel like Atlas, condemned to hold up the sky for all eternity. Bearing the weight of our world in a silent struggle.

Enter social media. The platform of picturesque perfection.

Women sitting down to daily quiet time. Entirely uninterrupted. Beautiful, handcrafted coffee mug in hand. A pitcher of fresh flowers nearby. Sweet, cherub-like children sleeping peacefully or playing quietly in the other room.

Men and women, flawlessly clothed and styled, even after a long, hard day’s work. Home just in time for a homemade, sit-down dinner around the kitchen table.

The comparison game is so, so easy these days.

What’s easier still is feeling like not enough. And not good enough.

Not . . . successful, attractive, trim, smart . . . enough.

Not a good enough: parent, spouse, friend, business partner . . .

Simply not enough.

I am here to gently remind you that no one’s life is as picture-perfect as pictured.

You don’t know what goes unseen outside the camera’s perspective. Whether that oh-so-put-together women feels just as lost and alone as you, despite her award-winning smile. That the flawlessly set table and home cooked meal was eaten in silence. That one partner rushed home to ensure dinner was ready and on the table . . . And the other walked in 45 minutes late. Long after dinner went cold. And into an emotional boxing ring.

The point is, we just don’t know. A picture is just that. A picture. A moment forever frozen. A picture that ironically does not represent the entire picture.

So, if you’re feeling not enough today, I invite you take a few moments wherever you are.

Take a deep breath in.


And remember: You weren’t meant to be everything to everyone. But you were made to be enough to those who matter. You were made to be you. And you are enough.

Write it on a post it. Make it today’s affirmation. It doesn’t matter how you remember it. Just remember. And don’t forget it.

You. Are. Enough.

I am enough.

We are enough.



Unexpected Guest

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Somewhere between expressing gratitude and enjoying the Thanksgiving holiday weekend, a not-so-welcome guest snuck into our house . . . The cold bug. And like that creepy guest who stays long after the party has ended, he has stuck around. Much to my dismay.

I have not been at my best the past week and a half. And neither has little man, since I got him sick. We’ve been running on little sleep and all the snuggles we can get in.

There isn’t much you can take as a breastfeeding momma, or as an infant. Add to that, my hesitance to load my little guy up on mainstream medications . . . Yup, I am that mom. A few things that have gotten us through the thick of things are:

  • Hyland’s Baby Tiny Cold Tablets – For natural, homeopathic relief. No unnecessary junk. I pass no judgment on mom’s who prefer traditional cold meds, but this is my pick. This is mini dude’s second cold, and I have seen a relief in all of his cold symptoms both times. Dosing can be tedius—every hour—but I don’t mind. I set an alarm on my phone. Note: My tiny man has not run a fever. These tabs are not designed to reduce a fever.
  • Hyland’s Baby Nighttime Tiny Cold Syrup – A nighttime version of the tiny cold tabs. I didn’t use this during his first cold but wish I had. He woke up so frequently during his first cold and has slept soundly—dare I say like a baby lol— this time.
  • Zarbee’s Naturals Baby Soothing Chest Rub – It’s like Vick’s, but all-natural and safe to use on infants. I rub a bit on his chest during bedtime. It has a wonderful, light eucalyptus scent.
  • Gaia Black Elderberry Syrup – An immune support for this momma. I went back and forth on taking this because of mixed info on whether it was safe to use while breastfeeding. Even Gaia’s own website has multiple articles with differing info. Confused, I consulted my doctor and was reassured that it is one of the safer herbal supplements and meds for a nursing momma to take.

I am very thankful that baby boy and I are both turning the corner. His nose is still a little runny, and I am still a bit congested, but overall we are on the mend!

How are you holding up so far this cold season?




Gratitude > Attitude


The holiday season is finally and officially upon us!

💰 Black Friday!

💰 Cyber Monday!

💰 Mile-long wish lists & shiny new toys!

It’s okay to shop-till-you-drop & want A L L the things . . .

But let’s all remember to stay mindful of the true spirit and reason for the season!

Give back. Donate to a charitable cause that resonates with you. There are so, so many out there! Whether you are an animal lover, passionate about medical research, disease awareness, making sure no kid goes hungry . . . Find the one (or more) that hits you right in the heart.

Pay it forward! Hold the door open for someone instead of rushing into Starbucks to get your pre-shopping peppermint mocha fix. Or treat the person behind you to an unexpected, free coffee. If you’re at the grocery store, allow the obviously frazzled mom with kids swinging off every limb, to check out before you.

Check yourself! No one loves waiting in long lines, whether at the grocery store, at Target, or at the gas pump. Understandably, you may get a little grumpy. Real grumpy even. And that’s okay. But before you lay on your horn in traffic or snap at someone for cutting the line, check your attitude. It’s okay to express your frustration or correct someone . . . Just be sure to bring tact, class, and kindness!

Be grateful for this holiday season. For every new day. For the little and big things in life.




I feel very fortunate to have the opportunity to work from home.

Working in-home means being able to work anywhere, anytime. Different even from the flexible and modern corporate world I used to work in.

If my little guy has a rough night or decides naps aren’t happening, it’s okay! I get to tailor my day around him! And I love that I’m able to do that!

With freedom to work whenever, comes the struggle of always feeling connected. Of being on all the time. It’s so easy to convince myself to do just one more task before powering down for the night. Repeat, repeat, repeat . . . My need for work-life balance is even greater now. And balance, my friend, is everything.

I used to be mindful of the way I began each morning. Even through pregnancy, I awoke 10-20 minutes earlier than necessary. I’d sit quietly in meditation for 5-10 minutes. If time allowed, I would do a quick yoga flow or free write in my journal.

When baby boy came into this world, I traded quiet morning meditations for round-the-clock wake-ups and nursing. I’m not sure if all moms readily throw self-care completely out the window to live and breath baby 24/7, but I did, and loved almost every second of it. I say almost because let’s be real for a second. A change this drastic can leave a girl feeling disconnected from herself! 

So here I am. Coming up for air after 8 months of reveling in non-stop sweet baby bliss. Feeling a little bewildered. Realizing baby-life balance is also important.

Now that my little man is older, and has developed a routine of his own, I’ve decided to sprinkle a bit of momma time into our mornings. Balance!

While my mornings are still ruled by his wake-up time, I’ve gotten into this little routine:

  • Wake up to baby chatter and happy shrieks.
  • We say our good mornings. His gummy smiles melt my heart every time! I turn off his white noise machine, change him, open the curtains, and sit down in the rocker to feed him.
  • Enter: Mom time! I pop one earbud in, open up either YogaGlo or Headspace, and take a few minutes to meditate. We snuggle when he’s finished, and then we’re officially ready to begin our day.
  • While he rolls, army crawls, and plays on him mat, I get a little more me time in. I listen to the news, check emails, eat my morning protein bar, and sip coffee.
  • Like clockwork, he’s ready for his morning nap nearly two hours after waking. While he coos and chatters himself to sleep, I read my daily devotional. A twist on the typical gal’s quiet time that I personally love.
  • Once he’s soundly sleeping, I get myself dressed and ready for the day—this has become so important now that I work from home—then sit down to get some work done.

This simple practice is triggering a domino effect in other areas of my life. Making space for myself keeps me mindful of creating balance throughout my day.

I work when he’s sleeping. A space for work.

I am 100% mom when he’s awake. A space for baby.

Unplugging at night is somehow easier.

I’m not perfect of course. But I am more mindful of my actions.

Do you have work-life balance? How about life-you balance? Which area needs your attention?