Monday, January 15, 2018

Potty Training & Keeping Your Sanity

Potty Training....those dreaded words. I'll be honest with you, I was dreading it when that time came. I didn't push my daughter Sophia at all. I wasn't looking forwards to it at all. When she started to show interest we began sitting her on her little potty. A few times she would be pee, but I'm certain that was just coincidence. Shortly after that she decided she wasn't interested at all. 

I love seeing those articles about how to potty train your kid in 3 days. Yeah. 3 Days. I'm not saying its not possible but for most kids, its just NOT realistic. 

Tip #1
First thing- they HAVE to be ready. Ease into the process and don't push them. Let them go at their own pace. That would be my first piece of advice. And then if they go backwards? Its okay! Take a break. They aren't ready.

Tip #2
Training Potty Vs. the "big potty"
I'm pretty sure this is more parent preference lol! I've heard a few moms say "I am NOT cleaning that little potty!". We opted with the training potty. Here's why:
Scenario at my house EVERY day
Sophia: I gotta potty!
(Mom or dad takes child to bathroom- they do nothing)
Maybe 10 minutes later
Sophia: I gotta potty!
(Mom or dad takes child to bathroom- they do nothing)
Around 5 Minutes Later
Sophia: I gotta potty!
(Mom or Dad takes child to bathroom- they do nothing)

And this goes ON AND ON
Remedy? We brought her potty in our living room and sat it in front of the tv. We put either a pull up on her or training panties

These are great because they are thick and extra absorbent! By doing this, it allowed Sophia to be more independent and helped her to be able to go by herself and when she felt she needed to. 
Now your probably wondering...what about when we go out in public? Well I've heard some parents admit that they keep an extra training potty in their vehicle (you do what ya gotta do, right?). Thankfully right about the time she started telling us when we went out that she had to potty, she began getting interested in using the "big potty" and now thats all she'll use now!

Tip #3
Kids need rewards. We all like praise when we do something good! Find what works for your kid! Sophia loves stickers and M&Ms. The Dollar Tree always has great sticker selections so we keep plenty on hand. Sometimes her reward will be a special activity. You could even create a small treasure chest will little items in there and let them choose a prize! Once they start doing good, take them to the store and let them pick out undies with their favorite character! 

Tip #4
Almost There
So we're finally at the point with Sophia where she's going to the "Big Potty" all day long. We even forgot one night and put her to bed in her panties. Thank the Lord she didn't pee! She got lots of praise and rewards that morning! We try to leave her in her panties all day and when we make small trips. Longer trips and overnight we'll put a pullup or diaper on her.

Every child is different with what works for them. I hope that you find some of these tips helpful during your potty training experience!

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Gift Certificates with Ashley Parker Photography

Christmas is just around the corner guys! There are always difficult people to shop for on your list. They seem to have everything they need so why not gift them something special that will capture precious memories. Gift Certificates from Ashley Parker Photography are available! They can be made available for any amount! Ashley Parker Photography specializes in children offering our very popular Grow With Me Package that includes sessions from newborn to first birthday. Looking for something simple? Our most popular sessions are 1st Birthday/Cake Smashes! 

For all sessions, digital images are provided on an online gallery. You also have the option to purchase prints through there as well.

Your sessions may be hosted in our studio or at your favorite location!
Contact Ashley Parker Photography today to purchase your gift certificate.
Mention this ad and get $10 off your own session when you purchase a gift certificate!!

Ashley Parker
Located in Union Hall, Va

Sunday, October 29, 2017

Halloween Fun

Halloween will be here in just a few short days. I love halloween and the fun it brings for the kids but its also a fun time for crafts and family time! Pinterest is one of my favorite places to find those great craft ideas! I thought it'd be fun to share a few of those ideas here so you could try them with your little ones! They make such fun activities as well as great keepsake items!

What crafts have you done with your little one? We'd love to hear about them! 

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Popreal: Mommy & Me Outfits

One of my favorite things about having a little girl is that I get to dress her up! Its even better when we can match! I'm always on the hunt for cute outfits that are age appropriate and stylish. Outfits that are a good price are definitely a plus too since my 2 year old seams to grow out of everything so quickly! 

Popreal has so many cute things on their site! From shoes to children's accessories and mommy & me matching outfits, they've got it all! The best part is their great prices. I was surprised at how affordable the items were. 

Sophia and I recently had the opportunity to work with Popreal! They allowed us to choose 2 of their outfits to review on the blog. Can I just say how tough it was to pick favorites! There were SO many cute selections! The Mum Girl Stripes 2 Piece Set caught my eye right away!

 I love how classy and simple it was! Dress is up with pearls & heals or dress it down with some sandals! Sophia and I felt like true princesses in our outfits! The set includes the skirt which has a thin black pinstripe design and a tulle overlay. The top is made of a thin black cotton material and has a button clasp in the back. I love the lace detail around the neckline!

We also chose this fun summer Maxi Dress set!
These colors just scream summer time! 

My favorite part about this set was that it was the perfect length for me! I am 5'2  and it was a perfect floor length. I also loved how flowy the material was. It wasn't real clingy and it has a great thickness to it so that you couldn't see through the white part of it!

Love these outfits as much as we did?! 
Popreal has some great promotions going on this month!

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

The All Natural Momma

November of 2016 I decided to take my first step towards a healthier and natural lifestyle. I was introduced to Young Living Essential Oils and purchased my very first Premium Starter Kit.
Why did I do it? Honestly, I was SO desperate! I had some health issues and had tried almost everything to take care of it and nothing seemed to work. Little did I know that receiving that kit would be one of the greatest things ever!

Since joining Young Living and being surrounded by many other ladies I quickly began to step back and take a look at the products we were using. Little by little I've been able to replace those items with natural items created by Young Living or even products that I've made myself using essential oils! For example- this weekend I made my very own Bug Spray and I was able to kick my dryer sheets to the curb and replaced them with essential oil scented dryer balls! Its unbelievable how affordable it is and it gives you such a wonderful feeling!

I also LOVE that I'm able to safely use many essential oils with my daughter who's 2. 
She is getting used to them and loves for mommy to rub them on her feet. That's her nightly "foot massage"! My favorite is blending peppermint, lemon & R.C. with coconut oil and rubbing it on her chest. Its amazing for coughing! You guys....this stuff is like magic! Rub it on at bedtime and say goodbye to the pesky cough!

Why the Premium Starter Kit?
Well because its pretty amazing, its a great price AND it includes some of the best oils to get you started! Get everything pictured above plus MORE for $160. Y'all this kit is retail at over $300! You can't beat this AND best of all....the bottle of Tangerine is FREE with it this month! So you have 1 more day left to take advantage of it! 
When you become a wholesale member it also gives you our member discount! You'll get 24% off for life! No sales requirements at all..just place a $50 order per year!
There are also some great options to earn more oils for free!

What are you waiting for????!!!!

Sunday, April 16, 2017

Agnes & Dora Clothing // Stylish Clothes for Moms on the Go

Who says you can't be comfy AND look super chic and gorgeous? 
Agnes & Dora provides a variety of fun and beautiful patterns in all different styles!
As a mom, I've quickly learned that comfort is definitely important while chasing a toddler around! 

Agnes & Dora designs and manufactures a variety of products to fit every age, shape & style. The majority of their products are made in the US and may be purchased through any independent sales representative across the US or Canada on their site. 

The amazing Katie with Agnes & Dora sent us a super fun pair of their leggings to review! 
These fun aztec patterned leggings included lots of fun colors and are perfect for spring! I chose to pair them with a button up denim high low top and added a turquoise chunky necklace and sandals. 

The leggings are made of 80% polyester, 12% cotton and 8% spandex and its recommended that they are washed inside out in cold water and dried flat! After wearing these throughout the afternoon and chasing my daughter around, I am definitely impressed. There was no riding up at all and the super stretchy material allowed me to play and run around with ease! 
The leggings are available in sizes xs through xl.

Agnes & Dora has so many more amazing pieces of clothing.
I absolutely LOVE their tops and the dresses are gorgeous! Everything is designed for comfort!

Katie is giving away a $10 shop credit to one of our lucky readers!
To enter, head on over to our Facebook Page for details!

Agnes & Dora by Katie Lee- Independent Rep
Join their Facebook Group Here

Tuesday, April 11, 2017

Essential Oils & Terrible Two's

If you have kids then you probably know the "terrible 2's" all too well....
The meltdowns over pretty much nothing, yeah.

From the time we walk through the door in the evenings till bedtime, life is SO dramatic for our toddler. Absolutely EVERYTHING is a big deal!

She didn't want her pink sippy cup, she wanted her "big girl cup" that she got for christmas....the one that doesn't have a lid and she spills everywhere
She wanted the WHOLE bag of chips, not the little bowl of chips you gave her
She didn't want you to break her piece of candy in half (we knew she'd shove the whole thing in her mouth at once)
She didn't want you to tear her coloring sheet out of her coloring book
You touched her
You wouldn't let her walk around with no diaper
You put beans on her plate....she didn't want them on her plate, she wanted them on her tray to her highchair
......and the list could go on FOREVER!

Usually by the time 8:00 rolls around we're putting on her Pj's and trying to get her calmed down for bed time (which again is another battle). I've recently started getting into Essential Oils and I have stumbled across a few oils that are great for helping us through these wild days with our 2 year old!
If your like me, your desperate to try anything to calm down your kiddos....or help them sleep. 


I absolutely love lavender for Sophia. Its a great oil for a couple of reasons. Its wonderful for skin support (dry skin, excema, burns, scarring, rashes, cuts), calming, sleep, allergies, stress

Gentle Baby

calms & relaxes babies, relieves colic, diaper rash, reduces stress during pregnancy, reduces stretch marks, soothing for chapped skin, rejuvenate skin, reduces scar tissue
(dilute with carrier oil and rub where needed; put a drop in moms hand and have baby inhale, diffuse 2 to 3 drops in room)

Peace & Calming

meditation, tantrums (yes please-dilute and apply to back of neck and feet of children to calm over activity and put a stop to tantrums!), overactive pets, teeth grinding, insomnia, relaxing bath, anxiety, massage


Does exactly what it says! AND its part of Young Living's KidScents collection! 
They are specially formulated to just the right strength for children so you never have to dilute them!
Apply to children's feet as a part of a before nap or bedtime routine! 

To learn more about essential oils, check out my website below: