Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Free Yoga Classes, Anyone??

Tired of paying countless dollars on yoga classes and then having to make time to have someone watch the kids so you can drive to attend them?

Well, guess what? You don't really have to do that crap anymore. Don't get me wrong-I love the vibe of going to an actual class and did it while I was pregnant. But now, since little man has arrived, I barely make it out of my house to go anywhere!



Instead, I use Yoga Download and stream my own yoga classes by paying a pretty cheap monthly membership. Some are as little as $10 a month-which is exactly what ONE class costs me where I am from. 

With this site, you can browse different classes or styles of yoga. There are also meditation classes (ughhh loveeee these) and even yoga playlists for music to accompany your workout!

There's an app that goes with it so you can do your yoga no matter where you go (vacation, etc) or you can stream it from your computer. When I am home, I will personally hook my laptop up to my big screen tv and stream the classes onto my tv-from my computer using an HDMI cable. Sweet, right?


With some of the poses, I will even let my son join in the fun!



Ok now to the good stuff!

I am so excited to team up with Yoga Download to giveaway a free SIX MONTH memership! To enter for a chance to win, use the Rafflecopter below! Good luck!


Namaste :)

Sia

15 Minute Babywearing Workout



Becoming a mommy has derailed my original gym routine.

Even after creating my own home gym, there are still times where I am unable to use it. I am only allowed to workout on my son's time now because, let's face it, babies don't always nap when you want them to! 

Instead of using it as an excuse and saying "Whatever, oh well, can't workout now," I have decided to incorporate my son into my workouts (when he is awake anyways).

We especially love to go on jogs in the jogging stroller or go on walks with the baby carrier. However, my favorite workout is a full body toner done inside the comfort of my own home!

For mommies who can't seem to find the time to sneak a little workout in, here is a great way to kill two birds with one stone: you get your fitness on while you bond with baby! It is tons of fun and brings to meaning to a challenging workout!


15 Minute Babywearing Workout

Warm Up: 5 Minute Walk

30 Plie Squats


25 Walking Lunges


20 Tripce Dips


20 Bicep Curls with 10 lb. Dumbbell (each arm)


Cool Down: 5 Minute Walk


Safety tips:
  • Wear your baby tightly and correctly.
  • Use a sturdy carrier. I love my Boba, as seen here, but Ergo & Tula are great, too.
  • Support the head, if needed.
  • Make sure baby's face is visible at all times and not buried into the carrier.
  • Wear baby high enough.
  • Go slowly.


Pumpkin Pie Spiced Oatmeal


One of my favorite fall recipes for cool, fall mornings!

Ingredients
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat oats
  • 1/2 cup coconut milk
  • 3 tsp pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 tsp pumpkin pie spice
  • 1 packet stevia
Directions
  1. Heat coconut milk & pumpkin puree in a skillet on medium for 3 minutes.
  2. Add in whole wheat oats, pumpkin pie spice, and stevia, stirring well.
  3. Continue cooking for 5 more minutes on the stove top.
  4. Top with coconut flakes or pecans!

Monday, September 29, 2014

My FAVORITE Nursing Bra EVER!


Hi nursing mamas & mommies to be! I bring you Hotmilk Lingerie. I have reviewed them once before and now I have ANOTHER amazing bra to share with you. You have asked me what brand do I prefer for maternity & nursing bras? HERE YOU GO!

Hotmilk is not your average lingerie company as they offer the most empowering and sexy maternity & nursing lingerie around! This company was born when two women felt unhappy with the limited choices of cute maternity & nursing underwear around. Therefore, they decided to create their own! Let's face it-when you think of maternity or nursing lingerie, sexy typically does not come to mind. This is why I LOVE HOTMILK!


So, I had the chance to review Hotmilk's Eternal Black Nursing bra! I loved it a TON more than the last bra that I tried from Hotmilk-and I really really liked that one, too! However, the fact that this bra is silky smooth and seam free makes me feel that much more comfortable while wearing it. It also does not show through clothes or look bulky like some nursing bras. It also unclips easily when you need it to! Don't worry if black isn't your color-this bra also comes in nude.


I feel extremely sexy in Hotmilk's line of nursing bras and that is important to me-especially when nursing because.. well.. sometimes we don't tend to feel as sexy as we should!

The bra features:

  • Non-wired soft cup bra for maximum comfort and support
  • Seamless cups for under tighter clothes
  • Lower centre front to wear with those summer dresses and tops
  • Side Sling for great skin to skin contact
  • 100% cotton lined cups for skin breathability
  • Designed with stretch on the top cup to allow for growth
  • Easy one handed drop down cups for breastfeeding
  • 6 hook and eye extension for ribcage expansion
  • Cotton lined straps for added comfort
  • Wider straps on the larger cups for added strength



Hotmilk has once again surprised me and reminded me just why I wear ONLY their line of nursing bras. I cannot wait to try their maternity collection during my next pregnancy! I am sure it will be super awesome.


To view more of Hotmilk Lingerie's collection, visit their:

Main Site
Facebook
Twitter
Pinterest

Disclaimer: I was given a nursing bra to test, at no cost. All opinions are my own.

The Babywearing Yoga Workout



What you will need to begin:
  • Yoga mat or beach towel
  • Open spaced  area
  • A sturdy and well made baby carrier such as a Boba, Tula, or Ergo.
  • You and your baby

Safety Rules to Always Remember:
  • Make sure that you have mastered these poses alone, first, before attempting them with your child.
  • Go slowly.
  • Always make sure that baby's head is supported and that his face is visible.
  • Wear your baby on the front, not the back, so he will always be in your line of vision.
  • Do not go out of your comfort zone. 

Warm Up: Sukhasana (Easy Pose):



  1. Sit down on the floor or a Yoga Mat.
  2. Cross your legs, placing your feet below your knees.
  3. Clasp your hands around your knees.
  4. Keep your head, body straight, and eyes closed.
  5. Stay in this pose anywhere from 30 seconds to a couple of minutes (whatever is most comfortable for you), focusing on deep breathing and relaxation.

Tadasana (Mountain Pose):


  1. Stand tall with feet together, shoulders relaxed, weight evenly distributed through your soles, arms at sides.
  2. Take a deep breath and raise your hands overhead, palms facing each other with arms straight. Reach up toward the sky with your fingertips.

Eka Pada Rajakapotasana (Pigeon Pose):



  1. Begin in a full push-up position, palms aligned under shoulders.
  2. Place left knee on the floor near shoulder with left heel by right hip.
  3. Lower down to forearms and bring right leg down with the top of the foot on the floor (not shown).
  4. Keep chest lifted to the wall in front of you, gazing down.
  5. If you're more flexible, bring chest down to floor and extend arms in front of you.
  6. Pull navel in toward spine and tighten your pelvic-floor muscles; contract right side of glutes.
  7. Curl right toes under while pressing ball of foot into the floor, pushing through your heel.
  8. Bend knee to floor and release; do 5 reps total, then switch sides and repeat.

Vrksasana (Tree Pose):



  1. Stand with arms at sides.
  2. Shift weight onto left leg and place sole of right foot inside left thigh, keeping hips facing forward.
  3. Once balanced, bring hands in front of you in prayer position, palms together.
  4. On an inhalation, extend arms over shoulders, palms separated and facing each another. Stay for 30 seconds.
  5. Lower and repeat on opposite side.

Virabhadrasana I (Warrior I Pose):



  1. Stand with legs 3 to 4 feet apart, turning right foot out 90 degrees and left foot in slightly.
  2. Bring your hands to your hips and relax your shoulders, then extend arms out to the sides, palms down.
  3. Bend right knee 90 degrees, keeping knee over ankle; gaze out over right hand. Stay for 1 minute.
  4. Switch sides and repeat.

Trikonasana (Triangle Pose):



  1. Extend arms out to sides, then bend over your right leg.
  2. Stand with feet about 3 feet apart, toes on your right foot turned out to 90 degrees, left foot to 45 degrees.
  3. Allow your right hand to touch the floor or rest on your right leg below or above the knee, and extend the fingertips of your left hand toward the ceiling.
  4. Turn your gaze toward the ceiling, and hold for 5 breaths.
  5. Stand and repeat on opposite side.

Sit down on your mat with your legs extended out in front of you.

Cool Down: Shavasana (Modified Corpse Pose):



  1. Rotate your legs in and out, and then let them fall gently out to the sides.
  2. Let your arms fall alongside your body, slightly separated from the body, palms facing upwards.
  3. Rotate the spine by turning your head from side to side to center it.
  4. Then start stretching yourself out, as though someone is pulling your head away from your feet, your shoulders down and away from your neck, your legs down and away from your pelvis.
  5. Breathe deeply and slowly from your abdomen.
  6. Hold the pose for several minutes. Make your mind still and concentrate on your breath or the body.
  7. After doing the pose, bend your knees. Using your legs, push yourself onto one side.
  8. Push yourself in a sitting position.

DIY Glitter Pumpkin Tutorial


I was looking through Pinterest the other day trying to find some DIY ideas to decorate for the fall. I came across this adorable Glitter Pumpkin Tutorial created by Emily, owner of the blog  Yesterdays Sweetheart and Fine Life Co.

I LOVE glitter! So I was so thrilled to share this tutorial for fall to turn any ole pumpkin into glitz and glamour for your doorstep (or inside your home!)

DSC_0473

According to Emily, all you need to make these is:
For the dots:
  1. Dip the pouncer in some mod podge
  2. Blot excess on newspaper
  3. Samp 2-3 circles at a time on pumpkin- glittering each one and working your way around.
DSC_0506

For the stripes: 
  1. Brush on mod podge on every other node, glitter as you work around.
  2. Clean brush and brush off any extra loose glitter around pumpkin, seal and you're done!
DSC_0493

Images & Tutorial by Yesterdays Sweetheart

Sunday, September 28, 2014

Why I Stopped Using Shampoo


My hair is frizzy, coarse, dry, and ultimately-damaged. Or so it was, before I made the gutsy move to hack it off a few months ago. It was one of the best decisions that I had ever made! I did not realize how great a short do' would look-nor how much I would end up enjoying it.

I have decided to recently start growing my hair back out for the winter months. WOOHOO!

And with that, I have made a HUGE promise to myself (and my hair) that I would take the very best care of it since I abused it so much in the past.






I won't be using dye (at least not for a while), bleaching, flat ironing, curling, or SHAMPOO. 

Yeah, you read that correctly. It's called the "No-Poo" method.

I know what you are thinking: that is just so GROSSUmmm not really. I will still be washing my hair-just with natural ingredients and not spending my money on chemical bullshit that only fucks my hair up even more

Even though I had cut my hair off and had been nourishing it with loads of conditioner, I was still having issues with:
  • dandruff
  • itchy, dry scalp
  • scalp sores
  • hair loss
Wtf, right?

Healthy hair starts at the scalp. So I started doing a little research. Little did I know, the shampoo that I was using was killing my hair.

Here is how:

1. Shampoo is a detergent. It cleans your hair thoroughly, yes, but it also completely strips your hair of the natural oils that nourish your scalp and that makes your strands happy & healthy! So what do we do? We use conditioner! However, no amount of conditioner can replace your natural oils. Your hair then feels weighed down and oily by tomorrow and then you feel the need to shampoo-again. But not only that-Would you believe it if I were to tell you that shampoo actually causes greasy hair? Your hair needs these oils that it produces in order to keep growing. If you're constantly washing your hair with shampoo, that shampoo is stripping your hair of those natural oils. Then what happens? Your hair tries to compensate by producing even more oils to replace what the shampoo has been stripping out. Think of it as a supply & demand thing: the more you shampoo, the more oils are created. This equals greasy hair.... and then you want to add a waxy condition on top of THAT??

Cosmetic companies LOVE this because it keeps you coming back for more resulting in $$$$ for them and damaged hair for you. Such a vicious (but clever) cycle. Luckily for them, not all of us made straight A's in Chemistry so we are unaware of what the chemicals are actually there for. Tsk, tsk....

2. Shampoo contains many harsh chemicals that you wouldn't even want to wash your dog with. However, the worst of the chemicals is one by the name of Sodium Lauryl Sulfate/Sodium Laureth Sulfate. This ingredient is found in pretty much every shampoo on the market (though they finally started making some shampoos sulfate-free, but there are other nasty chemicals that make up for the lack of it). The objective of this chemical is to produce a lather in the shampoo. Its responsible for the rich bubbly feel! Though it carries a low-moderate hazard to your health, it dries out your hair and is responsible for removing those precious natural scalp oils. In turn, you develop: dandruff, scalp sores, and an itchy and dry scalp! Hmmm..

3. Shampoo chemicals create buildup. This is also true for conditioners and other styling products such as gels, serums, etc. When build up occurs, you start noticing these dry patches all over your scalp, your hair looks lifeless, and may even start falling out. 

Soooo... if you aren't going to shampoo, how the hell are you going to wash your hair?

A very easy and natural method:
  • Apple cider vinegar (white vinegar works well too)
  • Baking soda 
  • Water
  • 2 Spray bottles
What to do:
  1. Fill one spray bottle with 2 tablespoons of baking soda mixed with 1 cup of water and fill the other spray bottle with 3 tbsp of apple cider vinegar to store in your shower.
  2. Rinse your hair thoroughly to begin.
  3. When ready to use, spritz your hair, focusing around the roots and massage your scalp. This counts as your "shampooing" or washing phase. The baking soda cleanses your scalp & strands to remove any product build-up that has been left behind for some time.
  4. Rinse the baking soda completely out.
  5. Next, it's vinegar rinse time! 
  6. Spritz your scalp to ends with the vinegar and let sit for 3 minutes.
  7. Wash thoroughly.
The baking soda cleanses while the vinegar regulates the pH of your hair & scalp. Cool, right? 

Here are some benefits of going "No poo":
  • More volume
  • More shine
  • Less frizz
  • Less oil
  • Safe for all hair types
  • Fewer washes (woohoo!)
  • Faster hair growth
  • You'll save more money (hooray!)
  • No damage to your hair (yipee!)
Now since my hair is SUPER curly and frizz prone, I won't be passing up my weekly coconut oil deep conditioning treatments-because, well, I don't have to-it's 100% natural! YAY!

Now, I have read that not everyone has the same experience with going "no poo." For me, this is probably going to work pretty well considering the last few days have gone very well. However, your hair has to transtion aka "get used to" what the heck you're putting into it. So it may become extremely dry.... or it may become extremely oily-just for a short period of time. Once this passes, I have heard that it is all golden.

Its Day #3 for me and my hair is feelings more vibrant, fluffier, and a whole lot healthier!

I will keep you all updated on how it goes! In the meantime, always always always check and research the products you choose to put onto (or into) your body! I realized that, as much as I care about what foods I choose for my body, I should be just as careful about what products that I wear on my body as well. After all, health is from all aspects of care!

I Am Not a Pacifier, I am a Mother



I came across this article from Parenting.com concerning breastfeeding mommies that struck a chord with me. 

It was titled: "When Moms a Pacifier" and some of the options that it gave to mommies for "handling a baby who never wants to be off of your breast" were:
  • Giving a pacifier instead of your breast
  • Thinking before you unbutton your shirt to give your baby your breast
  • Giving a pacifier when he is awake and distracting him from wanting to be on your breast by taking walks or reading books
WOW. Just WOW

This totally isn't a big deal to many mommies out there because this is what most sites and books teach-that a pacifier is the answer to all-but come on now. Don't they even realize that the breast was the first pacifier ever invented? This is why pacifiers or "dummies" were formed and shaped after a female nipple! Yes, God knew what He was doing.

I guess what really pissed me off was the fact that it made some women feel wrong for "being a pacifier." You aren't a damn pacifier-you are a mother! Embrace that shit! Don't jump to the pacifier each and every time your baby needs you-use what you were born with: BOOBS! They hold a lot of power in persuasion, trust me.

According to Kelly Mom, "Breastfeeding your child to sleep and for comfort is not a bad thing to do– in fact, it’s normal, healthy, and developmentally appropriate."

The breast was created to provide nutrition and food for your child.
The breast was also made to provide pleasure and comfort to your husband.
The breast was ALSO made to provide pleasure and comfort to your child-just in a different way than your spouse.

Breastfeeding is much more than just about feeding. It is a special relationship, a calming bond between mother & child. It calms your child and helps them handle stress. Notice when your baby cries and as soon as he latches on, BOOM! No more tears :)

Comfort nursing is totally normal and encouraged.You are not creating a bad habit by allowing your baby to fall asleep on your breast. After all, breastfeeding releases hormones that makes babies feel tranquil and sleepy. They are off before they even know it! 

I will be honest, though. I wake up 2-4 times per night STILL, after almost 8 months, and whenever my son cries, I give him the breast. I would say that 75% of the time, he will suckle for a few seconds, and off he goes back into dreamland. He is not hungry-he just wants to know I am near. And I love showing him, that I am there for him.

If you feel that your baby "wants to be on the boob all the time," try carrying him in a sling or holding him more often. Don't distract him away from what he is desperately asking you for. He wants comfort and if your breasts need a break, show him some comfort in other ways, if need be. 

If your baby will not give you a break at all and you are feeling frustrated and pushed to your limit-then maybe a pacifier can be your best option available. Every baby, every mother, and every situation is completely different and I won't judge you for it! You are doing the very best that you can.

Now, I am not 100% against the use of pacifiers-we have used them in our home! If you choose to use one that does not mean that you are a bad mother! I think almost every mother on the planet has used one and sometimes, they can be a total lifesaver! However, I do not give my son one to make him hush or when he wants the breast.



Every mother has her own unique way of raising her baby and her own values. This article should definitely be taken as opinion only. Do whatever works best for you and do not feel guilty either way. Personally, I cannot, with a conscience, deny my son the comfort that he asks for.

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