Mom Jean Confessions: To the Mom with a Strong-Willed Child – I Get it Now

I get it now. I mean, I realllllly get it now. I thought I got it before, but until you have a strong-willed child of your own – you never truly get it, do you? Who knows, maybe you were like me once – before we spawned a child like ours. Watching those other poor moms with their hands full, literally, not understanding how they could allow a child to behave that way. But before I get into exhibits A, B and C – I first want to say that I am strict. Like strict, strict. My first born knew how to say yes ma’am, no sir, thank you, yes please and follow instructions like a soldier fresh outta boot camp. But that’s just the thing – he’s what you call a “rule follower.” My second born – she’s what you call “the strong-willed child.”

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“Cha Cha’s Bloomin’ One” Cactus First Birthday Party

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a commission if you make a purchase using the links in this post.

1st Bday Letter Balloons & Pennant Banner

Cactus Balloons DIY | Cactus Cake DIY | Cactus Pillow

Watercolor Polka Dot Napkins | Watercolor Floral Plates

Hot Pink Layered Ruffle Tutu | Pink Crown Hairclip/Headband

Bday Onesie (handmade gift from aunt – ribbon rose tutorial here )

Well, it’s official. Our little Cha Cha turned one and is definitely not a baby anymore. She’s a walking, talking (although these days it’s more screaming), full fledged toddler. I always wished I’d had more of the baby months with my first – Garrett weaned and walked at 10 months old and mama was not ready for either. So hey, at least I got a couple more months with Charlotte, who just started really walking in the past week – on her first birthday, believe it or not. I keep joking what a strong-willed child she is, and she was gonna make darn sure she’d be walking by her first bday. Well played, Cha Cha, well played.

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10 Things I Learned When I Quit My Day Job for Blogging

This post is sponsored by Basic Invite. I received compensation and a complimentary product in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are 100% my own.

Two years ago this month, I finally put pen to paper (er finger to keyboard) and started blogging again after a very long, very emotional, and very challenging 9 month hiatus (you can read more about it here). I had just quit my day job, moved my family back home to Houston, and literally had no clue what my life would look like 2 months from then, let alone two years. One thing I did know though, was that I finally had my future, my career, in my own hands for the first time since that wide-eyed 20-something took her first steps off the plane in NYC ready to embark on a whole new adventure (another story, for another day). So that’s what I decided to do – look at this new chapter in life as an adventure. I’d been given a second chance to write my own story, and pursue something I was truly passionate about, and I wasn’t going to pass up the opportunity – since who knows when I’d get this chance again.

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Mom Jean Confessions: Self-Aware

This post is sponsored by Evivo but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

Our little Cha Cha just turned one, and for months leading up to her first birthday, I wasn’t thinking about what theme I wanted for her party (cuz cactus, duh, hehe). Nope. I was thinking about the dreaded “four-letter word” that every breast feeding mama loathes: wean. Thinking, how in the heck am I going to wean this “perfectly content to breastfeed her whole life” baby? This baby who touched a bottle for less than three seconds and decided I might as well be putting some foreign contaminate in her mouth. This baby who nurses with such ease that I honestly wonder if it’s cuz she’s my strong-willed child and there ain’t nothing she won’t tackle like a champ.

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Mother’s Day Becomes Father’s Night

This post is sponsored by Huggies, Pull-Ups, GoodNites but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

So much changes when you have another child, and not just in the conventional ways. Sure there’s always a period of adjustment, especially when you wait almost 4 years to have another. It’s like just the right amount of time to get used to having an only child, and then wham – everything changes with the birth of a new baby. I still remember my hubs having a little heart-to-heart with me before the baby came, after I expressed some insecurities and anxieties I’d been feeling in one of my more honest pregnancy posts. And like always, we tackled this new phase in life as a team and figured out ways he could start helping out more with Garrett. One way we knew we had to tackle was bedtime. I’d gotten into the habit of laying with Garrett in his bed every night until he fell asleep – and it doesn’t take a genius to realize that was not gonna fly once a baby was in the picture. So Grant started taking over with Garrett at night which at first I was sad about, because it was just another thing to remind me that he was growing up and didn’t need me as much anymore. But then a funny thing happened – I got to witness the most special bond developing between a father and his son right before my eyes.

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Why Iron? The One Thing My Mom Brain Forgot

This post is sponsored by Gerber®, but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

If you read my last post, you might have gathered we’ve been at the doctor’s office quite a bit lately. Poor lil Cha Cha was sick so many times I had to keep moving her 9 month appointment. It’s pretty bad when you’re on a first-name basis with the ladies at the front desk, and they all rejoice when you actually come in for a “well” visit. Let’s just say, the end of the school year aka “germ central station,” couldn’t come fast enough – if only for the pure fact that my kiddos (and the hubs and I) can now enjoy the next three months of summer sick-free.

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10 Things I Love About You: 10 Months Old

Well, I had every intention of doing one of these posts when Charlotte turned 9 months old – but wowzas, the last month has been a doozy. Poor Cha Cha was practically sick the entire 9th month of her life – a terrible UTI that had us in and out of the Ped’s office 20 billion times, a crazy virus that had Charlotte’s fever spiking to 104 in the night, and made its rounds to each of us which was super fun. She also started to crawl which was exciting…until it wasn’t. This girl is into e-ver-y-thinggggg. I honestly don’t think I baby proofed one thing (ok, maybe the stove/oven) with Garrett, but with Charlotte – let’s just say, I “Amazon Primed” toilet lid clamps after a certain someone decided it would be fun to go splashing in the half bathroom when mommy wasn’t looking (gross).

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12 Weird Things All First-Time Moms Worry About

This post is sponsored by Evivo, but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

By now you’ve probably seen the Luvs diapers commercial showing the first-time mom totally over-reacting and sanitizing everything, and then the second-time mom hands her kid off to the dirty mechanic. Yep, that pretty much sums up the neurotic things that go through your mind as a first-time mom. No matter how many times or how many moms tell you not to worry about said things, nothing can control the overactive mind of a woman who’s just given birth to a tiny human. Not even my well-intentioned husband who I trust more than my own self half the time, can curb the nonsense that came out of my mouth after our first was born. Let’s take a quiz shall we? And be honest, how many of these twelve are you guilty of?

p.s. Don’t worry, a 12 out of 12 just means you’re just as nuts as the rest of us 😉

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Mom Jean Confessions: The Real Mother’s Day

Before I was a mom, Mother’s Day just always seemed like that silly holiday that reminded you to buy your mom a nice card, maybe a little gift, and take her out to dinner to thank her for being your mom. Then, once I became a mom, I suddenly felt like all those Mother’s Days I’d shared with my own mom seemed so trite. Like all the well-meaning Hallmark cards in the world couldn’t possibly reflect the amount of gratitude she deserved for raising three kids all those years. And now that I’m a mom of two, I’ve finally figured it out. Mother’s Day isn’t just that holiday that falls on the second Sunday of May every year. The “real” Mother’s Day happens 24/7, 365 days a year. I get that now, and because I’m coming off one particularly challenging week leading up to Mother’s Day – allow me to enlighten you…

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Goldfish Crackers

How to Win the Snack War with These 5 Types of Snackers

This post is sponsored by Pepperidge Farm but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

We’ve all been there. You just finished putting together a plate of 52 different snacks, and it never fails – two minutes later you hear, “Mommy, I want another snaaaaaack.” If you’re one of the lucky ones, you’ll even get a “pleaaaassseee” thrown in there. But either way, I’m convinced there’s not a hungrier person on earth than a kid who’s just been told they can’t have another snack. I mean seriously, cue the overly dramatized “NBA basketball player” flop. Every. Single. Time. Because I know you know what I’m talking about, mamas – I’ve decided to have a little fun with this dilemma of ours and I’ve partnered up with Goldfish crackers to create a fail-safe plan to tackle even the pickiest of snackers. I’m calling this particular war plan “How to Win the Snack War with These 5 Types of Snackers.” Here goes:

1) The “Purist” Snacker

You may not have one of these, so allow me to elaborate. This snacker wants one snack, and one snack only. Once said snacker has finished one snack, then and only then is it acceptable to introduce another one. I know this because I tried making one of those cute little “baggie o’ snacks” that I saw a mommy friend of mine make for her daughters for them to enjoy on the way from school to gymnastics. Sounds harmless enough, right? Wrong. I dared to try my hand at making one of those “poisonous snack mixes” for my son and he all but threw it back at me. Not really, but he totally turned his nose up at it, and this is how I knew I had a “snacking purist” on my hands. Now I don’t mess around, cuz I know a Goldfish crackers multipack bag is all he wants. And honestly, it saves me a lot of time anyway when I’m just lucky if I manage to get out the door with my 8 month old in time to make it for pick-up.

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