Monday, April 3, 2017

Product Review: ClearPop Earache Relief + Giveaway

One of the worst things about being a parent, especially a parent to littles, is watching them while they are sick and in pain. You feel helpless when you want to be able to do anything and everything to help them. Soon after I became a parent for the first time, I experienced this helpless feeling. My oldest son has had chronic ear infections since he was 3 months old, he is now almost 4 years old.

Between 3 months old and 15 months old, he had over 10 ear infections. Every time we took him to the Doctor they prescribed him an antibiotic. By the time he was 15 months old, he had already been on several different kinds of antibiotics including amoxicillin, augmentin, cephalexin and several ear drop solutions. Finally, when he was 15 months old we opted to have tubes put in his ears.

This is a happy Weston less than an hour after his surgery eating breakfast. He was so little! 
His tubes put up a good fight, but his left tube fell out within 6 months of being put in and his right tube fell out almost 8 months ago. Since his tubes have both fallen out, he has had three new ear infections. This time experiencing them while he is a little older has been completely different. And just how life happens, if he is going to get one, I can promise you it will be a Friday night or Saturday - you know, when his pediatrician is closed. We then have to determine if we take him to an urgent care center to get a prescription, followed by a rather large medical bill - or do we hold off for a day or two and schedule a regular appointment with his pediatrician. But, then even at that, I hate paying an office visit for a 5 minute appointment when I can diagnose an ear infection at this point in my life.

I was recently contacted by ClearPop Rapid Earache Relief to receive a sample of their product and provide my honest review. I jumped at the opportunity because something like ClearPop would have been a god send for this household. We have been looking for an over the counter remedy to try for years that prevent the dreaded doctor bills but help Weston with pain relief.

ClearPop is an all-natural, prescription free, antibiotic free, earache treatment for ages 2 and up! The ingredient list is simple: isomalt, citric acid, ascorbic acid, xylitol, water, and lemon oil. ClearPop uses a lollipop-like shape to help with suction of the oral cavity and a natural lemon flavor to promote salivation to break up mucus and unblock the middle ear where the infection lives. ClearPop is medicine free, sugar free and gluten free. Kids think they are getting a lollipop treat and have no idea they are effectively draining their middle ear.

Based on clinical studies, ClearPop reduced the pain in 9 out of 10 patients while it completely eliminated the earache in 7 out of 10 patients. It's so simple to use as well! You simply have your child lay down, with the painful ear facing up, then place the flat side of the ClearPop on their tongue and have them suck vigorously until it is fully dissolved, normally 15-20 minutes.

Fortunately, or unfortunately, Weston has not had an ear infection in the last 2 months so I was unable to have hands on experience with this product. However, I am keeping it in our medicine cabinet and at the first sign of an earache Weston will be trying it out.

ClearPop has graciously offered to give one lucky reader a free sample as well! If you have a child that suffers from earaches, or if you are a frequent traveler, or if you have littles and you just want to be prepared for the middle of the night melt down when an earache surprises them - head over to my Instagram post here to enter to win. Deadline for the giveaway is Thursday, April 13th!

If you don't want to enter the giveaway, you can purchase ClearPop Rapid Earache Relief through 1100 stores nationwide, as well as, Amazon. It's normally $11.99 but Amazon currently has it on sale for $11.39 with an additional coupon for $1.50 off. I figure its worth a shot for an all natural treatment as low as $9.89 compared to a minimum Doctor's office visit of $100 plus the cost of an antibiotic.

If you have used it in the past, I would love to hear about your experience below!

Disclaimer: I received this product for free from Moms Meet (, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my honest opinion on my blog. The opinions posted are my own.

Monday, March 27, 2017

My Last First Birthday

How did this baby turn a year old on Saturday? Seriously, how did that happen? This little chunky-chunk is my second son, Lennox Ray. I would like to warn you if you don't want to see a picture loaded post, then skip this entirely!

Lennox's birthday has been a bittersweet build up for me. I simply can't believe a year has flown by as quickly as it did and on top of that, this is my last first birthday! It's weird to say this is my last first birthday because I never thought I would have the privilege of celebrating one first birthday. However, we have been blessed to celebrate two now! Lennox was our super surprise baby and from the moment I learned I was pregnant with him, life has seem to just fly by at lighting speed! 

If I'm being completely honest, this day came up so fast, I wasn't prepared at all. I mean, sure, I had been searching Pinterest for the next big birthday theme for several months. But, between working full time, adjusting to two littles, keeping a home, and just managing life - my free time hasn't been as available this past year as before Lennox. I had this big idea of doing a Wild One theme from Where The Wild Things Are. I had all these decorations I wanted to make sketched in my mind, I had a shirt idea I was going to make with my silhouette, I had big plans for party favors for all his cousins, the whole nine!  

But, then I found myself a week before his birthday with no decorations, no gifts, no party favors, no shirt, no nothing. In my mind, I had "ruined" his birthday. I was a horrible mom for not giving him a pin worthy first birthday! I didn't make him a chalkboard stat sheet. I didn't stay up until the early hours of the morning after one of his sleepless nights to make him that birthday shirt. I literally was loosing sleep over this. Over a birthday party! I was comparing my lack of plans for Lennox with my over the top first birthday that his brother received years prior. I was disappointed.

I woke up last Wednesday and decided I needed to take Friday off to make his birthday amazing. Around noon on Friday, after I had been to what felt like a million stores unable to find anything I was looking for, I realized I was being ridiculous. He isn't going to remember the shirt he wore. His cousins won't remember what cheesy favors they got after they left his party. No one in my family is going to judge me for the decorations, or lack of decorations, at his party. I was stressing myself out over nothing important. Regardless of how decked out his party is or isn't, it will still be amazing because we are celebrating him.

I told myself whatever the next party aisle had was going to be his birthday decorations and you know what? It ended up being perfect. Lennox has taught me over the last year that I have to loosen up. He has changed me so much that even one of my sister in laws commented on how she can tell a difference in me since becoming a mom of two. It was eye opening to hear, but in a good way. Lennox came into our family and was the baby I needed, without knowing I needed him. Before him I was the crazy scheduler, the planner, the OCD list maker. Weston, his brother, was a dream newborn. He fit into the schedule I planned, slept when I wanted him to sleep, ate when I wanted him to eat, was a perfect textbook baby. A baby my personality appreciated.

Lennox has been the complete opposite. He has made me grow and learn more about myself than I ever knew possible. He doesn't sleep, in fact, even since his newborn days he has been against sleep. He now barely takes one nap a day. ONE NAP! Weston was a solid three nap a day baby up until 18 months old. You know how much you can get done when your baby naps? Everything. Lennox has turned our life upside down and it has taken us a full 12 months to land on our feet again. But, the journey has been so worth it. I'm enjoying the little moments more. I'm realizing just because everything isn't picture perfect, doesn't mean it isn't perfect for us.

Lennox reminded me that I don't have control over everything and sometimes I am just along for the ride. He decided he was going to start walking at nine months old and he hasn't looked back since. He is eager to learn as much as his brother and determined to test his limits daily.

I tried to carry over traditions like I did for his brother, one being these monthly pictures. Lennox decided early on, around six months, that he wasn't a fan of the camera. And since he started crawling and walking early, there was no forcing him to take pictures after his six month home photo shoot. I had to let it go. Its funny how much just these pictures taught me. His personality came out in the pictures so much more when I let him be in his own environment instead of me trying to force some perfect memory. That big happy grin in month 11 is what I live for!

He has taught me that being different isn't bad, it's completely ok! He is so different than his brother, not just in personality but in growth and development. At first I stressed out about how much he ate and how little he slept. I learned my children are different as night and day but they are both equally showered in love and affection.

Lennox taught me searching for perfection is impossible and coloring outside of the lines is what you should really live for. Not everything has to be over the top, simple things, like a plain homemade vanilla buttercream cake, is perfect just the same. I let Weston help me make the cake, seeing his face light up pulled on my heart strings. He helped me make the batter and it was his idea to top it with M&Ms.

Lennox reminds me a lot of this sprinkle smash cake I decided to make for him. I thought it was going to be easy, how difficult can it be. But, today it's Monday morning and we are still finding random sprinkles in our kitchen! I told myself many times while I pregnant with him, don't stress out - this is your second, how hard can it be. Yet, here we are, 12 months later and I still struggle some days wondering if I'm doing it right.

All the days stress goes away when I come home to this blue eye, blond side curl, little boy. I forget all the things I may have done wrong during the day.

He has made me work harder at being the best mother I can be. He has showed me my strengths and my weaknesses.

He hasn't received a lot of alone time with Brian or I since every chance we get is quickly interrupted by Weston. But, watching them grown, bond and love as brothers has been the most amazing experience of them all. Weston will tell you Lennox is his baby, of course until it is time to change a diaper. He adores him and will do anything to make him laugh.

It's a different feeling watching your last baby grow up. You never know when it will be the last time for certain things, so I feel like I am cherishing all the moments just a little bit more. Even the late night feedings he still enjoys at 2am. I figure, I'll sleep when they are older - maybe.

I'm so happy I was picked to be his mom. He completes me in a way I could never put into words. He is exactly what this family needed.

Happy 1st Birthday, Lennox Ray! I can't wait to see where this next year takes us!

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Free Weight Loss Tracking Printable

It seems like every January most people plan to start the journey of weight loss. Some stay on track all year, others fall off once girl scouts starting selling cookies. Why do they have to start selling those delicious resolution killers in January? It's a set up!

I'm not really starting over this January, I'm just pressing play in a journey I started back in June of 2016 and may or may not have fallen off track around the holidays! In March of 2016, I gave birth to our second son. By the time I gave birth to him on March 25th I was at my highest weight EVER!! A number a never thought I would see under my feet. I was determined once I was cleared that I would kick butt and lose all the weight. And when I say all the weight, I mean every ounce of baby weight I have ever gained (plus some). My end goal - a weight I haven't seen since the second year of my marriage! How was I going to do this? Weight Watchers!!

I've been on Weight Watchers before, you know when I thought I was fat but I wasn't really fat. I love the new program and smart points. Since having my son in March, I am down a total of 34 lbs! I am completely happy with that number but I acknowledge that the number would be more if I worked the plan harder, that's a goal in 2017. I still have roughly 65 lbs until my end goal, so my journey isn't even half way over.

To help me stay focused and to stay on top of where I am and where I want to be, I created another printable. Again, like all the printables I make, I am offering it to you for free! If you are on a journey to a healthier you, please feel free to download them. Right now, they are made to fit a happy planner classic, you just follow the cut lines once you print it. If anyone wants a different size leave me a comment and I can update it to that size.

The first printable I made was a basic weight loss tracker. I do use Weight Watchers Online where I track my weight in the app; however, I like tracking on paper as well.

Download Here

The second printable I made was a measurement log. Again, I keep these measurements in my Weight Watchers app, but I like to have them written down as well.

Download Here
I just started using these in my planner and I love it! If you print it, I'd love to see it in use. If you post your planner layout on Instagram, leave me a comment below and I will check it out!

What was one of your New Year resolutions? Did you "press play" on a goal from last year? How are you doing so far a little over two weeks into 2017?

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Happy New Year {Plus, Free Printable}

Hello, 2017!

It's been two years since I posted anything, two years to the day. Life has been crazy, but I'm sure every one can say that. Right? Where does the time go, seriously? In the past few years, We've welcomed our first son, adjusted from a family of two to a family of three, I've attempted to start blogging again in 2015, then was beyond shocked with a super surprise second pregnancy, 2016 we welcomed our second son, and we have spent all of 2016 adjusting from a family of three to a family of four. To say over the years our life has changed would be an understatement.

This year, I am determined to get back to hobbies and things that give me a little individual down time - this blog is numero uno. I have a ton of ideas and a million and one projects that need to be completed to get our home and life in order.

January I am focusing on getting us organized for a great year! I thought the best way to do that would be to update my printables. I no longer use my family binder, that I started to share here back in 2012. I now use a disc bound system that I LOVE! My main planner is a Create 365 Happy Planner.

I recently revamped our menu/shopping list printable. I needed something that would fit my Happy Planner, the page size is 7 x 9.25 instead of the 8.5 x 11 that my family binder was. I love how it turned out. I made several different color layouts so I have a quick change if needed. I just print it out, cut along the gray lines, hole punch it and throw it in my planner.

Download Here

Download Here

Download Here

If you needed a new menu/shopping list feel free to snag a printable above, either pick your favorite or download them all!. I'd love to see it in use, if you use it and post your planner layout on Instagram, leave me a comment below and I'd love to check it out!

Do you use a planner? If so, do you prefer paper or electronic planning and scheduling? Would you consider yourself a fellow planner nerd? If you paper plan, do you decorate weekly, monthly, or never? Tell me all your planning faves!