Fiesta Friday: links I love and things to celebrate

things to celebrate happy weekend links

Does anyone have a robotic vacuum?! Our home in Texas and our current home in CA have all wood floors. I love the look and glad we didn’t inherit grungy carpet. I’m intrigued with the idea of a robot vacuum, it would make it much easier to clean crumbs and dog hair that I’m constantly sweeping up 🙂

I recently tried this fired grilled steak bowl for lunch and loved it! I usually don’t eat frozen food but received this one complimentary to review. It was quick and easy to make and tasted similar to the veggie burrito bowl I like from Chipotle. I loved that it had 20 grams of protein and 8 grams of fiber! I can’t remember the exact cost but it was around $3-$4. The only con was that I was still hungry afterwards (although maybe this is a reflection of me and my eating habits rather than the meal ha!) I would definitely buy it again!

Agree with many of these 6 things I didn’t realize about having a baby

 

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Fiesta Friday

things to celebrate happy weekend links

When we lived in Virginia, our street name was Cotswolds Hill Lane – having not known what the Cotswolds were then, they’ve since been added to my list of places to travel – check them out here with Julia’s travel post, so gorgeous!

This is literally my favorite facial product right now! I’ve definitely seen the claimed results of refined pores and a clean, detoxified feeling on your skin.

I recently discovered an awesome travel blog from the beautiful Emi, who documented these amazing pregnancy photos on her trips!

Have a great weekend! XO

 

Top 10…Ab and Core Exercises

I studied Exercise Science at BYU and absolutely loved my major! While I’m not currently working in my field, it’s so applicable to everyday life. Having a strong core is beneficial to one’s overall health and wellness, something I probably took for granted before having kids! My kids are almost 2 years apart and my body was definitely changed through the pregnancies and 2 C-sections (side note: it’s totally worth it, being a mom is the most amazing thing!)

I’m still working on the process of rebuilding my core and abdominal strength. One of the most common misconceptions is that doing thousands of sit ups will give you a 6 pack. Your core is not only the abdominal muscles but your entire core, including your back.

Here my top 10 effective exercises that will build your core (including your back!):

1) Plank

you can also try variations such as plank jacks, plank step outs, or plank leg lifts

 

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2) Walking planks – shown on Bosu ball to add more of a challenge because of the unstable surface

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3) Side plank

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4) Split leg sit ups – I usually do these on the Bosu ball

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5) Knee tuck on ball

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6) Bird dogs – these are so great for your entire core! They can also be done on a Bosu ball for an added challenge

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7) Spiderman plank

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8) glute bridge – the variation is shown here using a single leg instead of 2

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9) pelvic tilt – especially great for those small abdominal muscles in your core. This is also an excellent one for women recovering from pregnancy/diastasis recti 

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10) side plank hip drop

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Top 10 effective

Diaper Bag Essentials

My diaper bag has changed a lot from when I had newborns, but here’s what I currently carry for my kids (ages 4 and 2):

WELCOME TOBag from Nena and Co – I’ve also used bags from Petunia Pickle Bottom, Urban Outfitters and Humble Hilo

Snacks – my favorite carriers are the Clinique gift with purchase bags ha, ha!

Wipes, diapers, changing pad (I use the ones that came with the PPB bag)

Hand Sanitizer, advil, extra hair ties for me

As my kids get older, I carry less stuff – less toys, changes of clothes, blankets, bottles, formula, etc. When they were newborns, I love my Petunia Pickle Bottom bag which could be worn on the shoulder or as a backpack which is awesome when you need both hands! They are expensive but you can usually find great sales on their outlet site.

Linking up today with these amazing moms who are also sharing their diaper bag essentials:

Madeline at Casey Land

Kahana at A Beautiful Life

Monica it It’s All About

Chelsea at Tessa Marie

Lauren at The Andrew Life

Adriana at Nanys2pesos

Sweet dreams, baby

When I had my first baby, who is now 4, I was pretty clueless about how to teach a baby to nap. This can be frustrating for most new parents since napping and sleeping well through the night are usually related and all new parents need sleep!

I would highly recommend the book “Happy Baby Healthy Sleep Habits” AND I came across this post from Chelsea of Life With My Littles and it’s spot on about napping babies! Her tips are awesome and a white noise machine made my list of top baby items.

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Top 10…realistic baby purchases

Top 10

Thought I’d share a few baby products I loved with my two kids. Like most new parents, we registered for a lot of items that we didn’t end up using much – oops!

  1. Petunia Pickle Bottom diaper bag – I went through a few diaper bags before finally spending the money to buy this bag! It has a full zip and an awesome amount of pockets (perfect for bottles, keys, changing pad, and I always like an exterior pocket for trash). They occasionally have outlet sales too! Another thing I loved is that it can be worn on the shoulder OR as a backpack – especially awesome when you have two little kids and need both hands!

petunia2. Boppy nursing pillow – perfect size, removable cover for easy washing

boppy3. car seat clip in stroller – allows you to easily put a sleeping baby in the stroller without unbuckling the straps. The particular one we got was super easy to fold the frame to put in the trunk.

frame

4. Halo swaddle – a lot of people like the Aden and Anais brand swaddle, which we also liked, but like that these swaddles could be a little more snug

5. Halo sleep sack – after ‘graduating’ from the swaddle, we used this sleep sack which is basically a wearable blanket.

6. BOB double jogging stroller – This stroller is really awesome – super durable, easy to use, easy to fold and store up. Both kids are really comfortable and secure in 3 point belts and the covers fold down half way to shield from rain or sun.

stroller

7. White noise machine – we have loved these to help our babies nap well during the day and sleep well, especially with outside noises, lawn mowers, our dog, etc.

8. pack and play with bassinet and changing table – this one was the perfect size to fit in our room with newborns.

pack

9. Dr. Brown’s bottles – these have a filter which are supposed to help babies eliminate extra air swallowed (which can cause gas).

10. Baby Bjorn – great for carrying a newborn facing you and then forward facing when they’re a little bigger

bjorn

Any must-have baby items you’d add?