Monday, December 22, 2014

5 Things You Didn't Know That You Could Waffle

Who all owns a waffle iron?

Sure it may be a little outdated to some, but cooks everywhere are putting a new spin on this classic kitchen tool and coming up with their own uses for it. Don't throw yours away to your local Goodwill store just yet-we have found some really cool recipes to try.

Here are 5 things that you might not have known (or may have known) that you can make in a waffle iron!

1. Hashbrowns
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Image via Babble

2. Brownies
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Image via Babble

3. Scrambled Eggs
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Image via snapguide.com

4. Macaroni & Cheese
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Image via Willitwaffle

5. Bacon
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Image via Food Network



Sunday, December 21, 2014

The ONLY Shoes My Son Wears!

Winter is here and in full speed! I am so stoked to tell you mamas about Faas Design-one of the leading baby and child moccasin companies around.


FaasDesign

All Faas Design moccasins are made out of Genuine Leather and Wool Felt. All moccasins are handcrafted with love in Michigan, USA.


FAAS moccasins are especially designed to fit snug around the child's feet as they all have an elastic at the opening and are easy to put on and easy to take off. All Moccasins are made with a soft sole that is wonderful for Newbies, crawlers and for those who love to explore the world on their own feet.

We already own one pair of FAAS moccs, but we loved them so much, that we were excited to get another pair! Seriously, these are the only shoes that my son will wear and they truly have helped him to walk at a young age because it is not restricting and he can feel the bottoms of his feet.

One thing that I must tell you is that these are REAL MOCCASINS. They are very durable and do NOT fall apart or wither/fray like some other moccasins I have tried. You get your money's worth with these shoes. Also, they are easy to clean!

As with all FAAS moccs, my son's pair arrived in this cute little baggie and I couldn't wait to open them!






I chose the Weathered Stone moccasins to review. I wanted a color that goes with practically every outfit. But don't worry-Faas offers so many designs and colors to suit your desires. They even offer boots!


The bottom of our moccasins are made with a soft sole to enhance the walking of small children, since they learn best by being barefoot-this is about the closest that you can get, with wearing shoes!


The quality of these moccasins are super high. My son crawled in them, stood in them, and played with them. I think I caught him even chewing on them at one point and no wear and tear. 


These moccasins were also super easy to put on as they stretch around the foot. This makes getting out of the door a breeze and I can only imagine for comfy they are to my son!

I loved these moccasins for my son! Actually, I adored each and every single moccasin pair that I saw on the Faas Design website. They even make some adorable ones for little girls as well!

To connect with FAAS Design, check out their Facebook page & Instagram for the latest news, coupon codes and popup sales,

Disclosure: I was given a pair of moccasins to test, at no cost. All opinions are my own.


An Open Letter to My Son

Do you write letters to your baby?

The question may seem silly at first. After all, babies cannot read. 

But, when they get older, letters or memories from you can be something to treasure.

Greyson is turning one in less than 2 months. Lately, I have been having a little bit of a difficult time dealing with the fact that my little boy is turning one year old. I mean, where did the time go? I cried today about it. I feel as if I have not spent enough time with him in the last year due to working from home amongst trying to spend time with my husband and find a little bit of "me" time in the whirlwind. 

For those of you who have been following me since my son was born-you already know this. Part of my postpartum depression & anxiety dealt with the idea that my son was growing old and would no longer need me. I am sure this is a common thing that new mommies go through, but it truly affected me to the point where I had to see a doctor. I would literally cry and cry on a daily basis and couldn't bring myself to being happy. I didn't want to miss one moment and I would get mad at myself for being so sleepy from sleepless nights as a new mom that I just could not get over it. 

It is a lot better these days and I take it one day at a time. I try to spend every second of my son's life making a difference for him and showing him that I care. Motherhood isn't easy, but it is so rewarding.


As my son napped today, I went in and layed down beside him. I snuggled up to him, smelled his fresh blonde hair, kissed his rosy red cheeks, and whispered into his tiny little ears how much I loved him as tears formed in my eyes. Not sad tears, happy and hopefuly tears.

Then, I got up to go type this letter to my son. Because I had to get this off of my chest.

"Dear son, 

It has been almost one year since you came into my life and made me a mother for the very first time. It's hard to believe how fast time flies by. I did not realize that it would be this fast. I tried to hang onto each and every sleepy, tired, happy, frustrated, fun moment, but somehow, I feel it wasn't enough. I don't think it ever will be, but from what I am learning, this is how all mommies feel.

It has been one amazing year and I couldn't picture my life without you. Actually, I don't know what I would do without you. You are forever imprinted on my heart and with each day that passes I can't help but to love you more and more. You are my little boy, and will always be-no matter what birthday you have.

I hope for your future. I pray that I will be able to set a good example for you and to bring you nothing but happiness and love during your childhood. I want you to grow up and become not only successful, but a happy man who will create a happy family. 

The thought of you making some of the choices that I did throughout my short life breaks my heart and I hope you will never go down some of the roads I have. Someday you will be forced with tough decisions. Someday, you will have your heart broken. Someday, you may get into trouble that you do not know how to get yourself out of. But, I will always be here for you, son.

I am your mommy now and always will be, but there will come a day when you no longer need me and you will spread your wings and fly on your own.

Thinking of this day brings tears to my eyes because that no longer means holding you at night as you sleep, or cuddling you when you cry to wipe your tears away. This means that I can no longer take you to the park to play or random food fights in the kitchen. 

Little tasks such as changing your diaper or feeding you at night that might seem exhausting now, I will miss this. Because this means that you still need me. And I still need you. 

Someday, you will get married and create a family of your own. You will be the head of your household and make all of the important decisions that your family needs. I pray that I can raise you with discipline, wisdom, and love to become the best man, husband, and father that you can be.

But, as for now, you are still my little boy. My baby. You will always be my baby.

I love you, Greyson.

Mommy."


When Greyson was born, my husband and I set up an email account so that we could write Greyson emails whenever we had the time. We plan to give Greyson the password someday and let him go through and read all of our messages. I know he will love it!




Saturday, December 20, 2014

At-Home Foam Rolling Workout


If you haven't foam rolled before,then you are seriously missing out. I use my foam roller as soon as I get out of bed to stretch my muscles for the day. I also love using it for sore muscles after a hardcore workout.

Foam rollers range anywhere from $10 to even $50, depending on the material and brand and you can get them at any fitness or sporting goods store.

Some benefits of foam rolling are:
  • improves circulation
  • loosens tight muscles and "knots" by massaging
  • helps prevent injuries by stretching
  • increases flexibility and range of motion
  • removes lactic acid within the muscles

Here is an easy little foam rolling workout that you can do prior or after your main workout to help warm up and stretch those right muscles. You can do each move for anywhere from 60 seconds to 90 seconds a day. This workout is short and easy and takes 15 minutes or less!

1. Back
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  1. Lie down on the floor with the foam roller underneath your back.
  2. Begin rolling from your lower back all the way up between your shoulder blades (some even like going to their necks), back and forth.
  3. This will also make your back pop and it feels amazing!
2. Shins
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  1. Kneel over the roller so that both shins are on it.
  2. Keeping your knees off of the floor, place your hands in front of the roller to balance.
  3. Keep your weight on the roller, and not your hands. 
  4. Begin rolling back and forth on your shins.
3. Lats
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  1. Lie on your right side with the foam roller placed under your right side. Use your forearm to prop yourself upwards.
  2. You can place your left hand down on the floor or on the roller for support.
  3. Begin rolling from your right upper hip up towards your armpit, back and forth.
4. Hip Flexors
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  1. Lay facedown on the floor, propping your forearms up.
  2. Place the foam roller beneath your thighs and begin rolling from your knees towards the top of your thighs.
5. IT Band
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  1. Lie on your left side with your outer thigh on the foam roller. 
  2. Use your forearm to prop yourself up.
  3. Roll back and forth between the knee and the hip bone.
6. Hamstrings
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  1. Sit upward with your arms propped behind you and legs extended.
  2. Roll the foam roller from your knees up towards the bottom of your buttocks.
  3. Roll back downwards to your knees.
  4. You can do this stretch for 60 seconds or as long as you'd like.
7. Calves
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  1. Sit on your bottom with legs extended outwards, with hands propping your body upward.
  2. Using your arms to balance, roll both of your calves firmly against the foam roller.
  3. You can also cross your legs and do one calf at a time.
8. Chest
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  1. Lie facedown with roller one right side of your chest.
  2. Roll back and forth across your pec muscle from the edge to the center of your chest.
  3. Repeat on opposite side.
9. Hip Adductors
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  1. Lie on your stomach, supporting your upper body with your forearms.
  2. Bend your knee to the side and place the foam roller underneath.
  3. You should feel a deep stretch within your hips and inner thighs.
  4. Repeat on opposite side.


Don't Look Like Me.

This morning, I woke up to check my email to find the message below from one of my followers:


It read:

 "Hi, I would like to say I'm ashamed of myself.. you look better than me when you were pregnant and now you look amazing. I wish I would have your body one day."

This truly breaks my heart. 

No woman should ever feel ashamed of their bodies due to how another woman looks. 

I never want to make you feel awful about your bodies. Ever. I do not care if you are my worst enemy. I have struggled with body image before and suffered through an eating disorder and I can tell you that it is a hard battle to fight. Even to this day, I am overcoming my body dysmorphia to see myself for how I really look and not how I think I may look. Yes, even I still get insecure! I am human. I am not your idol. I make mistakes and I fall short, too. Even when it come to this.

When I was 50 lbs. heavier and unmotivated, I used to spend countless moments looking at photos on the internet of "fit girls" and how much I wished I could be them or have their bodies. Then, it would make me feel terrible about my own body and I would get depressed and down myself in a tub of ice cream and say "Fuck it, I will never look like her."


I was right. With that attitude, I wouldn't. Instead of reading what these women did to attain that body or to get fit, I would automatically say "That won't be me." Sadly, this is a concept I see a lot of. 

The first thing that you must realize is that every woman is truly unique-shape, size, features, you name it. It is what makes us beautiful. If we all looked the same, how boring would that be?

I do NOT expect you to look exactly like me. Acually, I do not want you to look like me. Here is what I DO want. I want you to look like the happiest, healthiest, and best version of YOU.

If you feel ashamed of your body, I am here to encourage you with that-it is my JOB. This is what I dedicate my days and my life to-helping you get fit, happy, and most of all healthy. My job is never to discourage you, though. 

When I chose to keep up a fit pregnancy, I got so many nasty comments such as this one:

"She's bragging and throwing it in my face and I am sitting here on doctor's orders, unable to workout. She makes me feel like a lazy slob."

Hello. Since when did my actions and my choices affect your conscience? You feel the way you do for a reason, but nobody can make you feel a certain way. You choose to feel the way that you do. I know this. I have been there.

If you feel ashamed of your body or feel the need for improvement, work for it. Don't sit there and say "I wish I looked like you or her or "Mary Poppins." Do work. Be a go-getter. Kick some ass. Believe in yourself.

Why?

Cause' you're worth it. 

So, don't strive to look like me or to "have my body." Strive for you, strive for your body.

Write your OWN success story! 

Ultimately, your health lies in your own hands. Today is a new day. Take advantage, love yourself, and DO WORK.

Hugs,

Sia Cooper


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