Tag Archives: mamalove

Kai’s 7th Birthday Trip To Honolulu

Holy crap, how did I get a 7 year old?! Our annual birthday trip with just the two of us went off without a hitch.

After Blaize and Pepper were born, I decided that Kai needed some one on one face time with his mama. When he turned 4, we went to LegoLand then Maui for 5 and 6 years old. This last year, we did the Waikiki thing! Experiences over things is the real deal at my house.

I’m a little late as Kai is turning 8 at the end of this month. Posting birthday pics now, better late than never.

IMG_0004IMG_0243IMG_0249IMG_0475IMG_0229IMG_0151IMG_0104IMG_0046Another birthday trip with just mama in the books!

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We slept like rocks every night. 🙂

Improvise Is A Staple Attitude At Our House

We celebrate life LOUD and PROUD at our house. The good times roll and roll quickly every.single.day. We have so much fun and get after the good times! No, I’m not supermom-I just like to have fun. And lucky for me I have 3 small kids who LOVE the fun with me. So we get out in the city a lot. We talk a lot, laugh a lot, eat a lot, adventure a lot and improvise a lot.

Yesterday, in the elevator we told one of our best little friends who’s 8 years old about improvising. She was confused because the game plan changed from the park to a hike. I asked Pepper what we do when we don’t get our first choice in life? Pepper said with a straight face and a 5 year old voice (that only a mom and speech therapist can love and understand) “we IMPOOOvise when we don’t get our furst choice. We say, it’s ok because maybeee next time we wheel get our furst choice. And if we don’t, it’s ok we let it go.  We still have fun, she said with a barbie doll smile!”

YES! That’s my girl! That’s my 5 year old miracle baby that I prayed for since I was 12 weeks pregnant.

So, now that I’m a single mom with three little kids in tow I subscribe hard to the “improvise dance.” Sometimes, it happens on a layover at work where I have 8 pairs of underwear for a 2 day trip and NO SOCKS. Oy! Or it happens a lot at the gym when the four of us hustle down the street to LA Fitness. It’s only a few blocks away so we walk. And it’s a chance for me to get my workout and shower in for the day. I pack my shower bag in a frenzy and always forget something. Today, I forgot my shower towel which has happened before. It’s not the first time people, but it’s the first time I’m talking about it. At least I have my razor and shower flip flops I tell myself. I’ve even dried off with paper towels before. #truth

It’s definitely not my choice to dry off with a hand towel at the gym but by golly I’m going to workout and shower any chance I get. Screw the shower towel, the show must go on! I just avoid eye contact hard! Haha!D3C6DC80-7E23-4997-A691-62EEE5BF80F1.pngIt’s so amazing when I hear one of my little peanuts rattle off some good grown up advice about “improvising” in the real world.

It’s a magical mom moment where I breathe in all the goodness that this little person is sharing with the world.

Marinating My Pregnant Belly

The good news is I have this babymama blog and I am the writer and keeper of it-all of it. 
Let’s just leave it at that, shall we.

Marination

In the beginning of my pregnancy with baby Kai, I wondered about stretch marks. Okay AND everything else.  Most of my friends had an idea or two about stretch marks.  A lot of my friends with kids under five walked away without stretch marks.  Randomly, my friends with kids older than five seemed to have stretch marks.  Coincidence, maybe.  But definitely interesting.IMG_26888 months pregnant with Kai, black line and all. 

After doing my own research, I think it’s a crap shoot.  Research suggests that stretch marks are primarily genetic. If that’s true then I’m screwed because it runs in my family. However, the rate at which your belly grows along with nutrition, general health and skin tone can play a factor.

So, I started “lubing” my belly with cocoa butter and shea butter because I heard these are the best natural lubricants.  There really are a million products that claim to prevent stretch marks.  And they are not cheap.  I doubt there is one product which actually prevents stretch marks.  Which is why I chose to use natural oils.  They claim to moisturize and help prevent stretch marks while soothing your stretching skin.  One product I like is called Wild Carrot Herbals from New Seasons and Whole Foods.  It has olive oil, cocoa butter, shea butter, vitamin E and even St. John’s wort along with a few other special ingredients.  Like anything else in life, there’s no guarantee but I figured lubing up couldn’t hurt.  At the very least it minimizes the itching from my growing belly and body.  And it feels good to pamper my skin.

The funny part is that the die hard marinators I knew were two prominent Portland yoga teachers.  They both openly shared their pregnancy/stretch mark experience with me.  One Portland yoga instructor said she gained 60 pounds with her son and “lubed up” five times a day.  And, no stretch marks.  Wow, that sounds amazing.  The second instructor in Portland said that she used oil called Mother’s Special Blend found at Whole Foods.  She would lube up from head to toe and cruise around naked for 20 minutes or so two to three times a day.  She said she didn’t get any stretch marks either.  Lubing up 2-5 times a day and letting it soak in sounded like a big time commitment to me.

So, I’ve been doing what’s realistic for me.  I’m lubing up once a day and try to do the head to toe lube job because it feels so good.  I can’t say I do it everyday but definitely get the belly on a daily basis.  It feels like I’m giving my skin a drink of water.  I like to sing “Marin-nnnnaaation” when I lube up and scoot around naked.

Bottom line is that all things being equal, I’d rather not get stretch marks but know it’s the smallest trade-off for the miracle of life.  To date, I’m packing 30 pounds and still stripe free.  However, I know those victory stripes can show up any ole time so we shall see.

I would love to hear your tips or stories about lubing up?

Please leave a comment below.  Thanks for sharing!

Published March 30, 2010

March 24th, 2018 Update-I still love to lube up and “marinate” after my shower and cruise around naked. Old habits die hard. Haha!

Getting Started Is The Hardest Part

I’ve never considered myself an underdog. Ever. Although some may have seen it or thought it, I never did. These days, I consider myself highly outnumbered as a single mama to 3 little humans. I remember waterskiing as a kid and my parents telling me that the newest, nicest ski boat or equipment doesn’t always make the best skier. Growing up, we always had everything we needed and skied our butts off early into Springtime and deep into Fall. Not to mention our annual January 1st polar bear waterski event in Oregon every year. Burr. Yes, my parents still chase the fun and adventures like crazy!  If anything it made me stronger. Sometimes stronger than I feel like being. Just sayin. #truth
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1997, lake days were the best!
On those days where I’m yearning to thrive  and I’m not in the mood, I get going. Because half the battle is getting to the gym. Or getting to the yoga class or starting that run. As I recommit to being the best version I can for myself, my kids, my family, my friends and my community, I focus on the going. Push that start button…
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Pepper, Blaize and me cruising the waterfront this summer
I definitely have my days where it feels like I’m a salmon swimming upstream with Black Bears everywhere. Crap! This mom life stuff is a lot of work. Yep, it definitely is. But I wouldn’t change it for the world. Sometimes, it doesn’t look pretty with red lipstick. Often, it looks like mom is wearing her jammie’s all day.  That’s what Blaize and Pepper said to me this morning on the walk to school. “Mom, why are you still wearing your jammie’s?!” Haha! Well, school mornings come hard and fast for your mom. Awake by 6:40am, 7:30am bus pickup with an 8am speech therapy lesson in tow. I don’t always have time to get dressed. But, I always have time to give you princess braids. #momlife
Setting aside the jokes, I’m lucky to grow up with solid parents who taught us even stronger values. Learning at a young age that it’s not for free and the show must go on-one of my mom’s favorite of many quotes! And how right she was. After a good chat with my mom friend in my half jammie outfit this morning, I focused on the “get going” part.” And here I am at the gym, sweating (thriving) like a dog and living the dream.
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Yep. That’s my parents, always chasing the fun! Mimi and Grandpa Mike wheelbarrow racing with Pepper and Blaize. 🙂
May you remember the “get going” part my friends even when you’re busy and it’s hard to get out of those jammie’s.

It Takes A Village

I remember hearing the saying “It takes a village” growing up but had no idea. No idea what it meant or how true it was. I feel like the bigger your tribe the more you need your village. I’m really lucky because I have a big, little tribe and an awesome village. I can honestly appreciate the familial concept of Big Love, and Sister Wives now that I have three, little humans. I loved the shows because the concept seemed so bizarre to me but somehow it seemed to work and very well?! The idea of all that maternal help and support right next door sounds AMAZING now. Sure a new bed, and new wife every night is still very creepy to me. I have no idea how Kody really sleeps with 4 wives and has all those kids. So many kids…

I could never do the sister wives thing but think the daily, maternal support (right next door) sounds awesome. Haha! For now, I’ll keep on keepin’ on with my happy, little tribe and awesome village. IMG_6704The village makes dinner out so much fun!IMG_3989The village makes pool days awesome!IMG_2982My little tribe biking in all their glory

Teaching Moderation To Kids

IMG_7185Family selfie in the Pearl, this is love!

I believe that moderation can be taught and as many talks as we have at our house about being a good person and doing the right thing, moderation comes up a lot.  I try to lead by example first and foremost because we all know our littles are watching our every move especially at these developmental ages of 4-7 year olds. After that, comes the good old fashioned creative questions that range from what if’s to look it up on your phone mom. Recently, my 7 year old cut himself off from treats stating “two is the limit.” And too much of anything isn’t good for you. My inner mom glow lit up like fireworks on the 4th of July! YES, you my love just limited yourself by yourself. This my love is a skill that many adults don’t have. This made me so happy. We talk a lot about health and how important moderation is. When one of our conversations sticks so that it plays back to me in this fashion, for me it’s called Mom Joy! IMG_7445Kai’s first day of second grade!

Of course, some days aren’t like this and talking sense or fairness is a struggle. So, I’m going to celebrate and focus on the days where it just flows and our family values are represented. To all the moms out there that answer the questions, read the favorite book 10 times in a row, and are trying your best, you are my hero!