Inexpensive Birthday for Toddlers

Want to know how I pulled off a small last minute party for our toddler keep reading dropping all the details….

Theme: Of course I came up with the theme “Two Legit to Quit” after it catching my eye on Pinterest. The hubby hated the idea of the theme but once I set mind that’s it.

Decor: Went to Dollar Tree yes Dollar Tree. I purchased table cloths, toys for goodie bags, balloons and more. This was a record for me $54 on decor and games vs my usual 200-300+. I also purchased a backdrop from Amazon for $20.

The Setup: setting up the night before is almost tradition for me. I never know what mood the kids will be in the day of party so I try to knock out all that I can ahead of time.

The Cake: With the Corona virus out there and us self quarantine I wanted to keep the cake simple. I reached out to Sweet Kravings our family official cake lady and she nailed it per usual.

Entertainment: I got creative and added a paint station for the kids with paint, and canvas from the local dollar tree. Bounce house worked out perfect it didn’t rain and the coat was right because of the lack of business during this pandemic we secured a discount. Lastly I added a 90’s trivia game for the adults I’ll put it this way the men had to cheat to beat us.

The Tears: I’m still in disbelief that we have a two year old. Let the potty training begin. These past two years have been such a blessing, my biggest lesson for sure has been slowing down and enjoying the moment and thats exactly what I will continue to do as watching our little one grow. Someone please stop the time.

Be right back grabbing tissue. Did you celebrate any birthdays or graduations during quarantine? Everyone was in shock that we actually hosted a party this year but this was small compared to our usual birthday festivities. Plus I made people sanitize at the door. Back to isolation we go!

How to balance kids during Covid-19

Well this momma is going to give the tea on what’s worked for us because it was trial and error the first week. I was trying balance being the teacher, maid and chef all while working my very demanding corporate America job, I knew something had to change and I was barely making it with coffee. Check out the tips below for what I did to find balance and keep the boys busy.

1.Planned ahead- I luckily have friends who are teachers as well as my Grandma so I asked them for a little help and made my own lesson plans. Each boy got a lesson plan designed for their personal skill set. Mahkai’s elementary also provided distant learning tools and Zoom calls with teachers.

2. Switched up the days- Yes the traditional learning is Monday-Friday but that didn’t work with me having to balance conference calls and zoom meetings. I give the boys two FREE days during the week so that on my off days Saturday and Sunday we can truly focus on learning. For example we would follow schedule of learning Tuesday,Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday-Sunday.

3. Dry erase boards- I write out the boys schedules daily and put check marks next to things that are complete this allows the boys to track their progress through out the day.

4. Lunch time- Am I the only person doing groceries 2-3x more often than usual? So the solution was to give them “school food” vs 5 star luxury meals I was making. Typical lunch is fruit, a snack and then kid friendly food you’d find at any elementary ie. pizza, chicken nuggets, steamed veggies. I made sure all lunches could be prepared in 20 mins or less.

5. Recess/ Exercise- I take the boys out once a day typically towards end of day we will go for walks or ride bikes. We got Mahkai a big boy bike and he rides it almost every day. One new thing I added was meditation and yoga and honestly it’s more for me than them because let’s be honest wearing all these hats can take a toll on your mental health. I’ve been finding so many new ways to make learning exciting and fun yesterday we went on a nature walk and used a explore board from Target.

I enjoyed this new time home with my family and will be rolling a lot of these new habits and tips in into or every day life once outside opens back up. I hope these where helpful don’t forget to share your tips below. Lastly what are your plans when outside opens back up?

TIP Tuesday “Hand me Downs”

The nerve of Mahkai asking me “Mommy why is brother wearing MY clothes”. Having two boys who are only three years apart everything gets passed down. Kids outgrow clothes on a seasonal bases so if I can get twice the wear it’s a win for this momma. I use to be the mom who would preach “my kids are individual and wont share clothes” but now things have changed. I’m now the mom who is going to make every dollar stretch. Here are my tips on how a save and reuse the boys clothes.

1.Storage- This is the biggest tip of them all. If you don’t properly store old clothes you are running risk of clothes having that nasty old basement smell. I buy multiple size storage bins from target WITH LIDS. Then I divide the clothes by size example all of the 12-24 months are all stored together. Shoes deserve their own bin, don’t be gross and put those used shoes on top of clothes.

2.Lables- Save yourself sometime and label everything makes things easier when it’s time to go through the bins and take out what you plan to pass down. I learned the hard way after spending many Saturday’s aimlessly digging

3. Let it Go- I use to let Kai wear too little clothes as PJ’s but now once its to small I immediately store for baby brother. Who wants stretched or discolored clothes?

4. Restyle- The best part is making old clothes come to life again. Find new ways to style if Kai wore it in a sporty edgy way I will find a way to put a preppy twist on things for Mahir.

Do you mommas let your children wear hand me downs? Have you ever worn hand me downs? Let me know your tips!

Unsolicited

If you are pregnant, looking to be pregnant or a first time mom then this post is for you. Get ready for all the unsolicited advice you never asked for not limited to just your family either.

I remember the first of many times, I was grocery shopping maybe around 7 or 8 months and a older woman asked “hey, how far along are you” I gave a simple answer to hear the reply “oh my your tiny”. She then proceeds to give me nutritional advice and tell me she’s been a mother for so many years and she has these perfect little ones of her own who are now thriving adults. I being the scared timid pregnant 20 something I was just let this woman talk for what seemed like forever.

I was naive thinking that would be the last of the parenting advice I’d get. WRONG! For each stage and phase there’s new advice. Newborn-6 months you will get the breastfeed or formula debate. Toddler phase you’ll hear all the advice about potty training and which snacks are best. Every mom will give their perfect Patty outline of motherhood. Well I’ll give it to you straight my kids have tried Macdonalds, they have missed bed times and lastly everything isn’t gmo and dye free. Some moms are probably clutching their diaper bags right now.

If I forgot to mention let me tell you now every mom is a chef, a doctor and certified life coach. It’s like one baby down and we all become experts. The thing about motherhood is unscripted and unfiltered. We all think we have it the secret formula of getting it right.

In Conclusion

Most moms who give the random unsolicited advice have good intentions and mean no harm. You can rather listen brush it off or you may just learn something. I remember the first year of parenting I’d take whatever adult conversation I could get seeing that most of my time was spent juggling my final year of college while pumping around the clock. I think we all can agree that that there’s no wrong and right. Its all trial and error but there is light at the end of the tunnel. My only advice to pass along is for when your time comes as the mom with the advice don’t drop to many gems at once.

Quick Breakfast

If your weekdays are anything like mine then you know that being organized helps with having a smooth morning routine. Some days all just run together, and getting two little ones and myself together can be drag. Every morning my grandma would have breakfast waiting for me and now looking back I view her as super woman. Keep reading below for my helpful tips.

1. Make all morning breakfast prep time between 5-10 mins, this gives me enough time to start my coffee have a sip and make boys plates; in the morning each minute counts

2. Fruit- I prep the fruit ahead of time so I literally just slap it on there plates in the AM; having things already peeled or cut saves time and hassle.

3. One item already being made this could mean muffins, yogurt,egg muffins or danish; I usually bake muffins Sundays which Kai helps and it’s a learning activity for him being able to measure and count.

4. It’s okay to give them cereal; I use to have mom guilt over them having cereal when kids actually love cereal.

5. Let them eat in peace- I typically sit boys at table while they jam to playlist on the google home; I then pack and check our bags and finish up my last min pull myself together

Lastly don’t stress as long as they eat is what matters. Don’t try to be the perfect pancake mom every day save the large spreads for the weekend. Please like, share and follow for more Tip Tuesday!

 

 

The Dress

I guess every girl imagines what they will look like on their wedding day but me. I never said “Oh I want to look like a princess. I will also let you guys in on a bigger secret when I imagined my life growing up I never saw children or a husband, I was under the impression that I couldnt have success, love and a family.

Well here was the big moment of selecting a dress. I had went behind everyones back weeks before my set appointment to try on dress styles, I knew ahead of time that I didnt want to be the bride trying on gowns all day. So boom fast forward to the dress shopping day and I only took my Maid of Honor and one out of my ten bridesmaids. Yes I said 10 we will get back to that in a few weeks but blame Moyo.

First  I tried lace gowns, I assumed I’d walk down in lace because I’m so old fashion and have a eye for classic pieces. Then came jewled dresses that everyone imagined me in. Like who am I kidding to know me is to love me I’m dramatic and over the top in all that I do. Yet here I was emotional over a classic dress that contained not one jewel nor lace. I was stunned like who is this adult woman standing in this beautiful gown.

Oladie and Jamaira had little faith in my dress selection until they saw it on me and I walked out, smiling from ear to ear while invisioning exactly how our big day will play out. So my tips for those brides looking for the perfect dress are below.

  1. Buy shape wear or under garments- You will be trying on dresses that other people have also tried on so bare skin is not an option for me, as well as you want to be snatched in so that the gowns fit there best
  2. Less is more- I have a large wedding party, I cant imagine the opinions and confusion I would have to overcome selecting a dress with everyone having input
  3. Budget- Dont be the bride with million dollar dreams on a dollar reality
  4. Style/Vision- I was open to trying on A-line, ball gown and mermaid because sometimes what you think will fit your body type and what actually does are two separate things. Go to pinterest and just scan and see what YOU like.

Emphasis on YOU, because trust everyones vision will be different.

5. ENJOY THE MOMENT- Dont be afriad to ask questions like cost of alterations, payment plans/options, cordinating of veils, storage, estimated time to recieve dress back, if you like white or ivory.

Wedding planning is a lot of work the selection of dress is one decision as bride that you can be selfish so go for it honey.