Earth Mama, Angel Baby Giveaway – Part ONE!

Hey folks! Your friendly neighborhood blogger here to announce a new two-part giveaway from…

Earth Mama Angel Baby - Pregnancy

I’ll be reviewing a few of the products that will be given away, and first up is the Angel Baby Body Wash & Shampoo.
Angel Baby Shampoo & Body Wash

From the Website:
.. a gentle, real castile soap – not a harsh detergent. It’s USDA certified made with organic ingredients with healing organic calendula and a light, naturally pleasing organic vanilla/sweet orange scent. Like everything we formulate at Earth Mama Angel Baby, it’s made with only pure, safe ingredients synthetic preservatives, surfactants, emulsifiers or toxins of any kind

Okay. Can I just talk about how. freaking. much. I LOVE THIS STUFF? I had used the standard Johnson & Johnson stuff, plus the Target brand Method on Nellie before and was just… Eh. Whatever. It got my kid clean, she didn’t smell like fat roll funk anymore so I guess I was happy-ish.
And then I used the EMAB Angel Baby Shampoo & Body Wash.. And I fell in big, pink, puffy heart love with it. All of the other products I’d tried on Nellie left her hair looking flat, and greasy. They smelled ok, but her hair just got this greasy look to it and it bothered me. I started using the EMAB wash on her from her hairy little head to her teensy little toes, and it was like manna sent from heaven. It smells HEAVENLY. I had to hold myself back from nomming Nellie’s toes, because she smelled like a creamsicle. It comes in a pump bottle, which I LOVE. I can get just the amount I need. The lather is fantastic, and it rinses COMPLETELY CLEAN. There is no residue on her skin or in her hair, but it doesn’t dry her skin. It leaves it feeling wonderfully soft, like a baby’s skin SHOULD be. And her hair? OMG. No flat, greasy look. It actually BRINGS OUT HER CURLS, which of course makes me flap & spaz. I love the fact that the ingredients are natural & USDA Certified organic. It is NOT a tear-free formula, however, so use caution around the peepers when you use it. I love this stuff, and I will never use anything else on her again unless I am desperate and poor.

The second product that they sent me to use on Nellie for review was the Angel Baby Bottom Balm.

Angel Baby Bottom Balm

From the Website:
Allergy tested, non-irritating Angel Baby Bottom Balm is vegan (no beeswax!) and the only balm made with organic olive oil infused with a proprietary blend of naturally antibacterial and antifungal organic herbs, shea butter and pure essential oils. No wonder it’s often referred to as Mama’s miracle balm.

In the beginning, there was Desitin. And my baby’s butt was greasy and messy.
Then, came Boudreauxs, which I love. It was a step up from Desitin.
Then.. Came the Angel Baby Bottom Balm, and once again.. Earth Mama spoiled me and this time, my baby’s stinky little bottom.

Guys, this stuff is amazing. It goes on so clean, and comes OFF so clean. You don’t have to sit there and scrub your fingers with four baby wipes just to get the dang stuff off. Half the time, to be honest, I don’t even wipe it off. I just rub my fingers together and let my skin absorb it. It has a wonderful smell; almost like honey, or lemons, or both. I haven’t really ever been able to put my finger on what exactly the scent is, but it’s natural and it’s great. I love the fact that it doesn’t cake in Nellie’s rolls and crevices like the colored butt creams do. Nellie has had ONE diaper rash in her 16.5 weeks on this Earth, and I wasn’t using this bottom balm at the time. She has never even had a hint of redness while I’ve been using this stuff.
My one gripe is the packaging; I would love for it to come in a tube. I’m not a huge fan of dipping my fingers into jars and getting out products, but that’s a small and nitpicky thing.

So let’s just recap:
My baby’s hair and body smells like vanilla-coated oranges, and her booty smells like honey. I’m amazed that I haven’t snacked on my baby from her smelling so good!

The best part about these products is that I can trust them to be good for my kid. I don’t have to worry about stupid recalls because some of the ingredients in them have suddenly been discovered to be toxic. The ingredients in these items are natural and organic, and I know that I can trust that and feel good about using it on my baby.

So. The part YOU’VE all been waiting for!

The Giveaway!

EMAB is giving away one of these bad boys to ONE lucky reader!

A Little Something for Baby

The “A Little Something for Baby” kit contains:

And one of you can win it!

Here’s How to Enter:


MANDATORY ENTRY:

MAKE SURE YOU DO THIS ENTRY FIRST, OR NONE OF YOUR EXTRA ENTRIES WILL COUNT.

EXTRA ENTRIES:
In order for your extra entries to count, be sure to enter each extra entry in its’ own, separate comment!

  • Follow my blog & leave a comment saying you follow.
  • Follow me on Twitter AND Tweet about this giveaway: “Win A Little Something For Baby from @BlogsMama_EMAB and @karmapearl! http://tinyurl.com/2bwxqu3
    Post the PermaLink of your Tweet by clicking on the time of your Tweet right underneath it. You may Tweet once a day for one extra entry per day. Be sure to enter your daily Tweet into its’ own comment for it to count.

  • Become a Fan of Hope Springs Eternal on Facebook. Leave a comment w/ your Facebook name.
  • Become a Fan of EMAB on Facebook. Ditto to above entry.

That’s it! Easy peasy!

This giveaway will close on 5/23/2010.

Good luck!


Oh, My Heart.

Nellie Bug,

Right now it’s 1:44 in the morning. It’s May of 2010, and you’ve been in our lives for over a year. Of course, this time last year you were small. Very, very small. Like, the size of a poppyseed.

You’ve been “on the outside”, in our arms, for 16.5 weeks. It’s been 16.5 weeks since you came into this world naked and wailing, tipped our lives upside down, and changed us forever.

My sweet child, right now your breath is heavy with sleep. I imagine you are dreaming, as you make soft squeaking noises and smile while you doze. I always wonder what you could be dreaming of. Bottles? Your toys? Of your daddy and me?

As I gaze down at you, I cannot help myself. I bend my head down, and nuzzle your cheek with my nose. You sigh, and I melt. I breath in the natural, sweet aroma that you have. I kiss the corner of your lip softly, and my eyes slowly pore over the details of your face. You are a completely different baby than the one we brought home that chilly January afternoon. And in another 16.5 weeks, you will be an entirely different baby than you are this night.

Soon, 16.5 weeks will turn into 16.5 years.

My daughter, I hope that one day you have the desire, and are able, to have children..

Because then – and only then – will you understand the love that is in my heart. I picture you one day doing what I am doing right now; snuggling your sleeping child in the early morning hours and becoming so aware of the swift passage of time. It’s bittersweet, my love… I realize that each passing moment pulls us a little farther apart. One day, you won’t need me to feed you. One day, you won’t need me to dress you, or change your diaper.. One day, you will toddle off and begin your own adventure.

My daughter.. I wish for you to have a life that is full of joy, and love. And I will do my best to help you have one.

You are loved, child, more than you will ever know.

Bugaboo Jewelry Review & Giveaway WINNER!

And the winner is…………




Katie from Baby Bumble B!!! Congrats Katie!!!

Mommy Rhapsody

For all the amazing mamas on my blogroll: This one’s for you.

Mommy Rhapsody from Church on the Move on Vimeo.

Daddy Win

So let me refresh your memory about what it takes to get Nellie to nap.

1. She must be swaddled.
2. She must be relatively full.
3. She must have a pacifier in her mouth.
4. She must be held/rocked until she falls asleep.

If all four of those criteria are met, then and only then will you have a prayer of transferring her to her crib. However, you then have to go through this ritual:

1. Wait until she has fallen asleep on you.
2. Slowly take the pacifier out of her mouth. If she remains asleep, great. If not, pop it back in there – QUICKLY – before she throws a fit.
3. If she stays asleep, you then must let her sleep on you for at least 10 minutes – usually more like 15 – to make sure that she stays asleep sans paci.
4. THEN, you have to transfer her from her laying position to one where she is resting against your chest. This makes it easier to just lean her over the crib and deposit her onto the mattress with minimal jostling.
5. Creep into her room, do the baby transfer like I described, hold your breath, and hope it takes.
If she wakes up, you have to go back to step 1 and repeat until it takes.

This makes for a very difficult and LONG naptime/bedtime routine.

Well, daddy was on baby duty yesterday and texted me at one point and announced that she napped.

FOR THREE HOURS. Cue me “WTF”ing. I asked him what he did, and he sheepishly replied that he let her sleep in the bed with him.
Surely not. No. It can NOT be that easy.

Ever the skeptic, I tried my old nap methods until I was finally ready to try daddy’s. I just couldn’t believe it would be THAT easy. Today when I got home from work, I let her stay up for a little bit until I decided it was time for an evening nap. I swaddled her, lay her on the bed and popped a paci in her mouth. I snuggled up next to her, and patted her when she fussed a little bit. She kept fussing and I thought that it was because she had a paci that wasn’t her favorite, so I slid off the bed and went to retrieve her normal one. I was hunting for a few moments when I realized she hadn’t started screeching when I left. Curious, I tiptoed back into the bedroom and do you know what I saw?

A sleeping baby.

SHE GOT HERSELF TO SLEEP. I didn’t have to rock her, and I didn’t even lay next to her that long.

WHAT THE HELL!!! I was amazed. I am not amazed that Josh figured it out, but I am amazed and baffled at the difference just a simple switch of location made. I mean.. How is our bed so different than her crib? I just don’t get it. I would understand if she fussed when we got out of bed with her, and quieted down upon our return but no.. She’s perfectly content lying there alone, as long as it’s on our bed.

This child never ceases to amaze and mystify me. Also, my hubby is a rock star for figuring out a nap solution!

That is.. Until Nellie decides to throw us for yet another loop and change her ways, which is pretty much what happens every three weeks or so.
😉

Motherhood: Four Months In

So I realized I haven’t really posted lately as to how the whole “having an infant” thing has been going. Yes, I’ve had my Big Fat Meltdowns all over the internets.. Which is kind of like going on a drunken texting rampage, and then waking up the next morning and thinking.. “Fuck. Who did I call and what did I say?” Whenever I go on an internet rant where I’m pissed, or emotional I re-read my diarrhea of the mouth the next day or a few hours later and feel supremely embarrassed.

Life with Nellie is challenging, but wonderful. It’s become slightly more challenging now that I’ve added a part-time job into the mix but I’m adjusting. Leaving her isn’t the hardest part. Don’t get me wrong, I miss her, but to be perfectly frank and honest: the break is nice. The fact that I don’t like my job is adding a lot of stress in my life, but Nellie really has nothing to do with that. When she has her meltdowns and de-evolves into Angry Badger, her fits are just the big fat anvil dropped on my already throbbing stress headache.

Nellie will be four months old on the 20th of May. WHAT? I know. It’s effing insanity. I swear to you, it was YESTERDAY that I was standing in a hot shower at one o’clock in the morning thinking, “Okay, these waves I’m feeling aren’t just pressure anymore; they’re pain. Maybe I’m in labor..”
YESTERDAY. Now, my child has full control of her head and neck, squeals and shrieks, and can almost sit up in the Boppy completely by herself without help. She’s taking rice cereal in her bottle and has already graduated from “newborn baby look” to “baby look”. I haven’t taken a weekly video and have been seriously slacking on pictures because our camera ran out of batteries, and we’re on such a tight budget right now they’re just not a priority. I hate that I’m missing out documenting these weeks but food + diapers > batteries.

Nellie has become the World’s Pickiest Napper/Sleeper. Where once she was a champion, now she generally needs very specific means to fall asleep. I am not REAL sure how this happened. She will not fall asleep on her own. Gone are the days where a swing soothed her to sleep. Now, she will not fall asleep unless she is full and strapped into her carseat in a moving vehicle, full and being pushed in her stroller, or is being held and rocked with a pacifier in her mouth. Getting her into her crib and staying asleep is sometimes takes multiple tries. EVERYONE has told me, “Don’t let her fall asleep on you. When she wakes up and sees she’s in her crib, she’ll get upset and cry.” That’s all well and good but if I put her down drowsy? SHRIEKING. Shrieking like SNAKES ARE EATING HER. Not talking “wahwah” I’m talking “JESUS THERE IS A COBRA IN MY CRIB, AND IT’S SLOWLY EATING ME FROM MY TOES UP.”

It’s amazing how when you become a parent, you learn things about your child. How you and your partner are sometimes the only two people in the universe who can get the baby to sleep. Josh and I are both in agreement that we are the only two people that Nellie really recognizes. Sure, she smiles at people but you can tell when she looks at us, she KNOWS us. And that is one of the greatest and most amazing feelings my heart has ever known.

Nellie rolls over… Sometimes. She’s rolled from belly to back a few times, and back to belly maybe twice.

Nellie LOVES to be held above your head so she’s looking down at you. This is very dangerous, as it puts her in perfect “spit up directly in your mouth” range (as daddy learned the hard way) but she loves it so much, I just can NOT resist. When she gets excited, she opens her mouth, wrinkles her nose, and breaths in and out excitedly. She loves to look at “Other Baby” in the mirror and she LOVES bathtime.

Motherhood… It hasn’t really sunk it yet that I am someone’s mother. Is that weird?? I look at every other mother that I know in my life and sometimes I have to remind myself that I’m part of the “club”. I’m now one of those women that’s expected to know what to do when my child cries.. To always be prepared with a Band-Aid and a kiss for a boo-boo.. To carry wipes, and Tylenol, and toys in my purse. Motherhood is the strangest thing I’ve ever been through. It’s also the most unique, rewarding, challenging and exciting thing I’ve ever done. It’s an adventure every day. Watching Nellie change and grow from day to day is.. It’s unreal. It makes me realize my age. It makes me face my mortality. It makes me grateful for every breath of air I suck in. It makes me realize that as long as this child that sleeps in my arms as I type this is healthy and taken care of, nothing else matters.

Yes. It’s hard. And frustrating. And meltdown-inducing, but I would not trade it for anything in this universe.

Dear Motorcycle

Dear Man on Motorcycle,

Wow.

You’re neat.

You have a big, expensive piece of machinery that makes noise. I AM IMPRESSED. Really. No, really! I think it’s EFFING AMAZING, and I am just so, like, blown away by the awesomeness that is YOU and your grumbling, snorting, eardrum-offending BABY WAKER ON WHEELS.

The fact that you drove up here with your LOUD ASS FRIGGING MOTORCYCLE was awesome enough but to my ABSOLUTE DELIGHT, you apparently discovered that – WHOOPS! – this wasn’t where you meant to drive AT ALL and turned around and passed by my baby’s window a SECOND TIME.

I CAN BARELY CONTAIN MY GLEE AND JOY.

It gets better, Mr. Harley. Not ONLY did you pass by the sleeping child’s window twice, but you managed to wake her from a slumber that she had just drifted to about ten minutes prior. YOU ARE SO SKILLED AND HANDY.

PLEASE GIVE ME YOUR PHONE NUMBER, SO THE NEXT TIME I WANT AN OBNOXIOUSLY LOUD NOISE TO WAKE UP MY CHILD, I CAN CALL YOU.

Sincerely,

P EFFING S:

I’M BEING SARCASTIC, JACKASS. I HATE YOU, AND I HATE MOTORCYCLES. I HOPE YOU SWALLOW AN OBSCENE AMOUNT OF LARGE, DISGUSTING BUGS AND VOMIT FOR THREE HOURS STRAIGHT.

P.P.S Sorry for all the ranting, but I find loud motorcycles to be unnecessary and ridiculous. Not necessarily ALL motorcycles, just the ones that sound like Thor threw his damn hammer into a mountain range when one cranks them up. No offense to anyone who rides them (other than Mr. Motorcycle Man of course), but the motorcycles themselves make me want to Hulk out and smash things with my fists.

P.P.P.S I just realized that I put not one, but TWO comic book references in ONE paragraph. Yup.

The Importance of Family Vacations

Some of the greatest memories I have from my childhood are our family vacations that we’d take in the summer. When I was around 5 or 6, we went to Disney World with a detour to New Orleans on the way home. When I was a bit older, we visited Niagra Falls and the Eastern coastal states. A few years later, we traveled around the Eastern provinces of Canada. I watched Keri Strug win the Gold for the Women’s Gymnastics team in the ’96 Olympics from a small cabin somewhere in New Brunswick.

Family vacations are a time to reconnect with your family in a world where everyone is always in a hurry. It gives everyone a chance to really get to know one another again and while sometimes that makes for some pretty epic sibling fights, it also makes for great memories.

Family trips are also great learning experiences, and a way to start a lifelong passion for travel. I am proud to say that I’ve been to Maine. I’ve seen the beautiful countryside of Prince Edward Island in Canada where the popular book series Anne of Green Gables was set. I remember sitting on the beaches there in pitch blackness – it was the only time in my life that I’ve ever seen the Milky Way. I was exposed to a different culture: different music, different dress, different dialect and I consider myself lucky for that. I’ve been to Newfoundland, Nova Scotia, Quebec.

Family vacations don’t have to be to exotic or unusual places to be of value. I think just spending time together as a family and getting away from the daily grind is the important part. It’s an essential part of bonding; it creates memories to cherish and experiences that you’ll remember forever.. And that’s priceless.

I am writing this post to participate in the Golden Inn Resort “What is the importance of a Vacation” sweepstakes for a chance to randomly win a full conference ticket to Blogher 2010. You can learn more about the Jersey Shore Resort and contest at their blog http://www.GoldenInnResort.com/vacationtips.

My Mother’s Day

Even though I don’t really consider this my 1st Mother’s Day, society acknowledges it as such. In 2008, I had lost Green Bean a few months before. My friend Becky and of course Josh both acknowledged me as a mom that year. Last year, I had literally just found out the day before Mother’s Day that I was pregnant again.. When we announced the pregnancy on Mother’s Day, people said “Happy Mother’s Day” to me but almost everyone I’ve encountered today has wished me “Happy 1st Mother’s Day!”


I’m blessed to be a mommy to two babies; one I hold in my arms, and one I hold in my heart only.

Today was a great day. Josh, Nellie and I roamed around the Chattanooga Market for a while. After, we grabbed some lunch and I dropped Josh off at his brother’s house. I went with his brother Tim yesterday to see Iron Man 2, because he wanted to take both of us but my mother-in-law couldn’t watch Nellie so Josh told me to just go. I watched it, reveled in it’s awesomeness, and then made Josh go see it today. Nellie and I went to a huge used bookstore here in town called McKay where I managed to snag the next book in the Sookie series that I haven’t read – Dead and Gone. I AM EXCITE. We came home, took a little nap together in the chair and when daddy got home we all took a walk downtown and got ice cream. I wore Nellie in the Moby facing out, so the world could marvel at her Cute. And marvel they did. I felt proud to be walking with my baby and husband.

It’s been a great weekend. A wonderful Mother’s Day. Sometimes, when I think about how blessed I am, I lose the ability to breathe for a second and wonder what I did right to deserve such a life.


Seriously. How could I ever ask for more?

Mother’s Day 2010


May 9th, 2009:


May 9th, 2010:



What a difference a year makes.

Happy Mother’s Day to all of you who hold, play, and kiss your babies today.
Happy Mother’s Day to all of you who are anxiously anticipating the moment where you can hold yours.
And Happy Mother’s Day to all of you who can only hold your precious babes in your heart.

I am honored to share the title of “Mom” with all of you today.