Night Time Routine (Getting Sleep W/ Infant)

This post is in collaboration with DockATot.

It has been EIGHT months since Anakin was born… WHAT?! This child is large and in charge (of our house.) Things are baby-proofed on the daily, messes made in the kitchen as he learns about food, and all plans revolve around our beloved bedtime routine. Since about two months, we average 10 hours of sleep a night. Half thanks to Anakin loving both sleep and playing HARD – half a lot of work, patience, and repetition on our part. Every growth spurt/ leap/ change he has slightly effects a random night here and there, but this has been our routine to wind down our little jedi.

4:30 Nurse

5:00 Dinner solids (snacks and steamed vegetables)

5:30 Clean up house, play, and books.

6:00 Bathtime

6:15 Lotion, brush hair, and pajamas.

6:30 8 Oz. bottle

6:45 Books and night time Disney JR. nurseries.

7:00 / 7:15 Laid down in his Dock A Tot for bed.

Wakes between  5 AM and 7 AM

He recently just transitioned to his Grand sized DockATot, and it is a dream! The Deluxe+ sized dock is best for babies 0-8 months old or 5-22Ibs, so we got our new size at just the perfect time! The new, larger Grand size is for 9 – 36 months and 22-40lbs. The Grand is perfect for cuddling, playing, lounging, resting and everything in between. It’s ideal for our upcoming week long travel dates (pray for us)! We highly recommend the Docks for bed transitioning, thanks to built-in, air permeable sides that act as bed rails, allowing young children to settle more easily in a bigger bed. We rest easy and guilt free knowing Anakin feels a snug sense of security in his newer, bigger dock.

This time we also got a travel bag for our trip next month, which is durable (100% polyester), water-resistant (not waterproof), easy to clean, and comes in a drawstring dust bag. We went to Texas a few months ago, and he transitioned smoothly in his dock, so praying we have that luck with a bigger time difference soon!

The three of us are so thankful for DockATot for collaborating with us again, and being so generous in offering our community $10 off all Docks! Which Docks do you have in your cart?

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Travel Bag we picked for our trip (Grand Size) | Marble Grand DockATot

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What She Really Wants For Mother’s Day + $100 Giveaway

This post is in collaboration with JORD Watches

My first real mother’s day is coming up… It won’t be the first celebrated – my dogs (AKA my husband) have gotten me cards for years and last year I was pregnant… but this is my first real mother’s day of having my heart live outside of my body. What do I actually want? I know the answer is supposed to be “nothing” or “I have everything I’ve ever wanted” but those would be lies. What I really want for mother’s day is time.   

We want time to soak in every milky smile, every uncontrollable laugh, every open mouthed beso, and every time we see the light bulbs go off in in their eyes when they grasps the meaning of something for the first time. We want time to save them from every fall, to calm down when they are frustrated, to figure out if they need Motrin or gripe water or something in the cabinet to ease their pain. Sometimes we want time to wash the spit up out of our hair. Sometimes we want time to just laugh at ourselves for going the whole day without noticing it was there.

We want time to sob over how much our babies change daily. We want time to pray over them as they grow from babies to kids, kids to teens, teens to world changing adults. We want time to figure out how to explain the birds and the bees – then some years later explain to them how to change our first grandchild’s diaper. We don’t want time to stop or rewind – but to be able to see these moments happening and be aware that this is what life is about.

Joy is found in the seconds and minutes and hours. Joy is not limited to just our vacations and weekends. All we want is more time to soak in this joy called motherhood. Every mother, like every child, is unique in her own heavenly way. If it is being a mother through pregnancy, fostering, adopting, or simply loving others as if they were her own – she deserves a timeless gift that is just as unique. This year I am honored to wear my first wooden watch from JORD.

If you’ve been subscribed to this blog for any amount of time, you’d know that I am passionate about my vegan lifestyle. I love animals, I love our planet, I love my body that God has given me. Not only does being vegan mean I don’t want to eat animals, it also means I don’t want wear them. Most luxury watches are made with leather, so for someone to gift me something vegan shows me that they are beyond thoughtful. These wooden watches are a true piece of art, and a reminder of the unique mothering role God has given me. Every day I can rest in knowing that joy is welcomed in these messy seconds.

I am blessed and excited to pass on a $100 gift code for a cruelty-free, sustainable, durable and timeless watch from JORD. One lucky person will win, but everyone will receive a small gift once the contest is over. To enter, fill the form at this link*.

|| Men’s Watches  || Women’s Watches  ||

*The contest will close 05/13/2018 at 11:59pm CST. 

*Both the $100 and gifts will expire on 06/10/2108.


Shopping Haul + How To Run Errands w/ A Newborn

 

I wish I could say, “I’m never too proud of myself.” But you guys, I am not the one to learn “how to be humble” from. One of the things I am most proud of was managing a couple weeks solo with a newborn under a month old. Ya girl was all by her lonely self. No family – thanks military. No husband – thanks military. No friends that were around to help (I’ll let that one slide, BUT THANKS MILITARY.) In fact, I spent a lot of time solo. My husband returned to work to help with hurricane damage on base when Anakin was just three days old and also left for training when he was two weeks old. I’m not even going to play it cool, ya girl was frightened.

Having to bath a rubbery, limp noodle of a baby solo – not fun. It happened, and it ended up being fine, but FRIGHTENED.

Having to go to check ups solo? What is the doctor said he was dying – FRIGHTENED.

Having to do any sort of shopping? NO PROBLEM.

 

 

You know, it’s funny. For someone who LOVES being at home, I sure do LOVE shopping. We’ve cut back on unnecessary, but shopping for the sake of survival is actually exciting to me. If my husband doesn’t ask “where can I go sit down?” then it wasn’t a good trip, DO YOU FEEL MY LOVE FOR SHOPPING YET? I’m the annoying person in front of your pasta reading every ingredient of every brand. I’m the one that has coupons AND cartwheel. I’m the one looks like I’m doing “the father, son and holy spirit” hand signs before squatting to see the bottom shelf of the clearance section. I know someone out there feels me on a spiritual level…

Anyways, I got asked often by new moms, “how are you doing it?” How are you managing a stroller, car seat, AND cart or basket? Well, easy… I didn’t. I am the mom that knew life went on when there wasn’t a husband in town to help. My son needed a healthy mom to make milk, and in order to do that, I gotta eat! I am so thankful for brands like Binxy Baby that keep solo parenting in mind.

 

This shopping hammock took the dread away from running the simple, everyday errands. It has grown with us from newborn to seven months old! Although we’re about to retire it since Anakin can sit up by himself, it is a nifty tool that would make a genius gift for any upcoming baby showers.

Thankful for Binxy for giving my followers   10% off all products! What are you parenting hacks for shopping?

 

3 Easy & FREE Postpartum At-Home Workouts

Post in collaboration with The Mint Julep Boutique.

“If you breastfeed, the weight just sheds off.” Raise your hand if you heard this myth. Here I am, seven months later, and still a chubby-cheeked, chunky vegan. If the weight came off for you with no diet change or exercise, WOW. You are so blessed, but I’m not impressed by genetics. I am however impressed by those who choose to take care of their temple while also chasing around demon possessed tiny terrorist calling out “MOMMOMMOMMOMMOM.” I like to think your reward will be in heaven for your patience and discipline!

Motherhood is fun for me; I get to learn how to navigate life a whole new way while also raise a tiny man (the first of hopefully many.) I must admit, going to the gym is not fun OR cheap for your average new mom. The price of gym memberships = price of formula or diapers or toys or you get where I’m going… Something for baby. While our gym membership is free on base and super close, I just can’t bring myself to leave Anakin yet. I want to include him in everything we do! Some may need the mental and physical disconnect from their babies just for an hour, and that’s okay. For me, the opposite happens – I get anxious and just can’t enjoy my workout being away from him or I feel like I should be spending that time with my husband since I CAN NEVER SEE THAT BEAUTIFUL MAN ENOUGH (I’m obsessed with him.)

At the same time, I can’t be a bum. Anakin needs a quick mom to get the dog food before he does. He needs a mom strong enough to do a thousand squats a day when he army crawls to my feet and cries. He needs a mom with endurance because nap times are just long enough for coffee (and, on a good day, blogging.) So let’s snap on our high-waisted leggings, squeeze into a nursing sports bra, and rock these mindless three beginner postpartum workouts with our terrorist- I mean tremendous babies!

Wear Baby

When I baby-wear: the commissary, going for a walk, busy markets, cleaning the house on a fussy/ clingy day, in airports.

Wearing Anakin has been a great way to strengthen my back and core! Early postpartum I struggled with back pain and numbness (I’m assuming from the epidural.) Now I can feel a huge difference in my energy and back strength! Just make sure you’re following the company’s recommendations to safely carry and not just going off a rando on YouTube; not all carriers are made the same.

Floor Workouts

This was MUCH easier before Anakin started power crawling and standing up, but my tip is to do this while baby is awake! Use a DockATot, jumperoo, or a chair to entertain them and do what you’re comfortable with. Yoga, planks, push-ups, sit-ups, and any body weight movements. I personally don’t want him near weights (he’s an adventurous spirit) just because it’s one less safety hazard. When he’s older, ya girl is going to weights!

Walk The Dog(s)

Maybe you don’t have dogs, but spend time outside! You can use a stroller or a carrier, just go outside around the neighborhood, a trail, a track, or a plaza. I need to go outside to just disconnect from the endless to-do list at home. Anakin loves to watch his dogs, checking out the lighting in stores, or see colorful produce. Going for a walk can boost your energy, relieve stress, and be a great form of exercise!

These are my tips to sneaking in some muscle and tone during the postpartum season of life. Thanks to The Mint team for partnering in today’s post! They make these workouts easier with comfortable and practical leggings. Plus their tees are SO SOFT and COMFY! This is my second top from their site, and I’m obsessed with it (even for those bum days). Here’s a last tip: if you sign up for their e-mails, you’ll receive $10 on your first order! As always, you are so loved and are doing great mama!
What are some ways that you keep your strength up? Comment below!
Like this post? Here are some others you may enjoy today!

|| STAR WARS NURSERY TOUR ||

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Hey y’all! I finally got around to showing more of Anakin’s Star Wars nursery here in Florida. He’s growing like a weed so everything in the room changes monthly, but here are some photos from the early newborn days and what it looks like now seven months later! Some of my favorite details are the paintings we did while waiting for him to arrive and our custom made waddle from Blush and Blue (a fellow military family business that we adore!) All of his furniture are from different stores and brands, so if you have any questions, please feel free to ask in the comment section!

 

 

5 Tips For Growing Your Brand

Hiya, and welcome back to Anchors + Planes! If you’re new here: Hello, I’m Angel. I’m a military wife, new mom, and photographer. I have been a paid photographer for seven years now, but only recently started to dive into my business. There’s been seasons where I’m motivated and times when I am ready to call it quits… that was until I started to reach out to others in my niche and learn. While there is no universal formulas for branding across all spheres of society, there is a handful of tips that will help you find deeper joy in the failures and peace in your content while growing! If you’re setting the tone for your own dream wedding, photography business, Etsy shop, orthodontic offices, or just your dog’s Instagram page – here are FIVE tips for growing your brand.

Be Authentic

au·then·tic [ôˈTHen(t)ik] – adj. 1. of undisputed origin; genuine.

If you genuinely find joy from letter boards, fairy lights, and tummy tea – power to you, dude. As for me, I find that when I stay away from trends expected from me, the deeper my content is. In photography, I could pose in a “smile on 3, 2, 1” but that is not the heart of the story in front of me. It’s easy to fall in line with the cookie cutter expectations of my niche, but magic happens when you stay on the path you set out on. For an example, while working with brides – she will often have send her inspirations that are all over the board: different settings, different tones, different styles. My job is not to mimic those images, but see what they all have in common – Love, romance, joy. What a customer means to communicate is an emotion and not a replica.

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“Let love be genuine.” 

Romans 12:9 \ Best Wedding Websites

Finding your brand’s authentic style will come with time, but when you finally feel you’ve found it – it will be liberating!

Community Is Powerful

My biggest mistake starting off was being closed off to learning from others, not caring about the customer beyond the paycheck, and not working along side other businesses on the same job. There’s great power in community and knowing when your business can benefit from outsourcing.

With clients, it is vital to make them feel safe and secure in choosing your services over your competition. When you have a customer confident in your business, they’re more likely (for sure) going to offer their recommendation to their social circles. Likewise, when a customer has been turned off by your mistakes or poor attitude, they will share that experience which will drive potential customers away.

With “competition,” (who even says that anymore?) offer to meet them in person! You obviously already have a lot in common, but learn how you’re different as well. This can actually bring you more business! For example, if I get an inquire for a date that is unavailable, I can recommend them someone who is not only talented but kind. Yes, in the future they may book with them again, or they choose you for being generous enough by not leaving them in the dust.

With outsourcing, it’s just a matter of knowing when you’re “not there… yet.” For example, I have my hands full at the moment (photography, marketing, social media, blogging, editing, photo sessions, inquires/ contracts, etc,) and I have yet to master all of it – so when a bride says “oh, you don’t print my invitations?” I can proudly say, “EVEN BETTER – I have friends over at Basic Invite that have over 800 designs for you, envelopes  almost unlimited colors, custom samples, free address collection service, and they’ll even throw in a free wedding website.” But, for real, look at these epic Wedding Invitations

Your customers will thank you when they have their visions come true, thanks to you and your amazing community!

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“That there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together. Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it.” – 1 Corinthians 12:25-27 | fun wedding invitations |marriage invitations

Over Deliver

Did anyone grow up hearing, “you get what you get, and you don’t throw a fit.” Some brands actually try to function off that… and they’re often flooded with 1 star reviews. Over delivering does not mean you have to sell out, it just means find little ways to be generous to your attendees, clients, followers, etc. That could be with product or with time! Some of my favorite packages from brands have hand written notes or surprise samples. Little tokens of appreciation sprinkled through words of affirmation or a gift. Perhaps it’s donating your time to a charity that is meaningful to your niche! For example, I got to collide my worlds as a photographer and military wife by donating my services to an event on base. That willingness to serve those who serve our country was a bigger blessing to me then it was them. Fill your cup by pouring into others. There’s enough love to go around!

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“One gives freely, yet grows all the richer; another withholds what he should give, and only suffers want. Whoever brings blessing will be enriched, and one who waters will himself be watered.” Proverbs 11:24-25

Know When To Say No

This was a painful lesson, and often it feels like a punch in the gut… It’s the same story for me, and I assume no matter what your brand is – it’s the same with you.

“Friend”: Oh my gosh, I saw you do photography! So cool.

Me: Thanks!

“Friend”: I would love to invite you to *insert event*

Me: Oh my goodness, thank you so much for inviting me to such a meaningful event! I would love to come and be a good friend.

“Friend”: Cool… oh and can you bring your camera?

Me: Oh, you mean you want $500 of my service for free.

Maybe they weren’t even a friend, but you get the point. Some people may not respect your art, brand, or product enough to pay you for it – and that’s okay! Don’t let it burn bridges, just simply say, “Sorry, we are not taking collaborations right now. We are a growing business and look forward to hearing how you like our product.” or “What e-mail address is best so can I send an invoice?” Friends and family should be willing to support your endeavors before asking for freebes – and if not, it’s okay – give them grace. Maybe they don’t find value in that particular things… YET! Don’t take it personal and keep on working towards zoning in on your dream customers.

“Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.” – Ephesians 4:29

Pray

Anxiety may set in during slow seasons or big life changes that interrupt your work flow. Like in all things – love well and pray. Forgive yourself and your team for playing the comparison game or not seeing the value in your brand’s purpose! Pray for wisdom, peace, and vision for your brand moving forward.

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.” – Philippians 4:6 

 

I hope this post was helpful or inspirational to growing your vision of branding! If you’re planning your new photo session, website, business, or mini-poodle’s social accounts – comment below with what you find best for growing your brand!

Post sponsored by: Basic Invite.

Current 5 Min. Makeup Routine| Vegan | Cruelty-Free

*Post contains associate links*

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SPRING-ing Into Financial Confidence

We are not millionaires.

We are not even hundred thousand-aires.

But we are debt-free, saving growing, single-steady income-aires… with an infant.

This is culturally the year we are supposed to be overwhelmed financially; it is the year of having our first child. Yet, we are working less and saving more… What sets us apart from the newlywed couple we USED to be? Self discipline, greater goals, and smarter work. Open communication and judgement-free conversations that lead to feeling good about our choices and not hiding receipts. Here are my tips on how you can save more for your family for FREE.

We all want a savings but think, “I’ll save next paycheck.” The time to save is NOW. Let this spring – no TODAY- will be the start of your joyful finances! Grab a warm mug, and lets get uncomfortable.

Unsubscribe

Businesses know when payday is around the corner. You’ll notice more going on, and e-mails flooding in for “YOU DON’T WANT TO MISS THIS…”  and boom, you’re suckered into buying toxic candles to last you the rest of the year. Start your spring cleaning by unsubscribing from everything. Including notifications from Amazon Prime! Money for out of season candles or money for vacation? That’s a lot of margaritas on the beach in Mexico that you’re missing out on, just because “well, it was on sale.”

DIY

Look at everything with DIY googles. Making your own coffee at home cost less money and time then going to a Starbucks. Doing your own nails cost less money and time then going to the nail salon. Doing your own wall art cost less then the Pottery Barn must-haves. Upcycling furniture cost less money and takes less time then going out for new items. This is a great way to learn new skills! This year I learned to cut my husband’s hair, tone my own hair, and sew baby items for Anakin. The little things add up, which is how we were able to afford a recent trip to Texas for a friend’s wedding!

Host

If you have friends that are only available to meet for brunch, lunch, coffee, dinner, drinks, movies, etc – invite them over. Make a pot of coffee, have a BBQ and jump on Vudu. This can save on food, drinks, entertainment tickets, parking fees, toll fees, baby sitters, and unfortunately more. I am the biggest fan of brunch occasionally, but a bigger fan of authentic and real friendships. Friends want you to succeed, and will be understanding to a change of scenery!

Never Pay Full Price

Shopping consignment and thrift stores saved us big time with baby items and furniture. If you are in a store and want something, try seeing if there is a coupon online. My favorite brand Free People can be found in Marshall’s for nearly 40% – 60% cheaper! Today, I got $80 worth of Too Faced make-up for under $35 at Macy’s (two full sized products, and three freebies!) Shop smart and save. I try to make sure that if I am coupon-less, I am at least supporting locals. Buying bulk and using the calculator app on your phone is also a great tip for groceries! Keep your eyes out on unit pricing and adding up your items so check out isn’t uncomfortable if you’re out of budget.

Overall, we have to have strict black and white goals. What are our wants? What are our needs? And what are we spending our money on that is neither a want or a need? For us, it was easy to cut out cable TV, the bulls-eye section at Target, and presliced fruit. It turns out I also don’t need to have a high maintenance hair color and my husband doesn’t need more video games… that is until Anakin can be his Player #2.

And like always, you get what you pay for. I may have a cheaper hair appointment, but I still get it trimmed by someone I trust. Forever 21 may have the cheaper price tags, but I want to invest in pieces that don’t shred in the dryer and can handle baby fluids. We want to make sure our bodies are well fed with healthy food, and that we have a mindset of investing in our future. There is no authentic, genuine, and joyful future in impressing anyone with things we can’t truly afford.

I hope these tips are both encouraging and helpful towards being mindful and confident in your spending this year! If you have any other changes others can make for free, feel free to leave them in the comments!

“For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.”
Matthew 6:21

NEWBORN MUST HAVES

If you’ve wandered to this blog post, it is most likely because you or someone you love is expecting… CONGRATULATIONS! Pregnancy is an exciting time to prepare for a new family member, and if you’re like me, you searched high and low to make things perfect. As much as I love sharing products, it is vital to look you dead in the eyes and say: YOU DON’T NEED ANY OF IT. Yes, things are helpful, but a newborn just needs a fresh diaper, some boob juice, and loving arms to sleep in.
If you are in a stressful financial situation, BREATHE. We live in a time where marketing is so intense, the sellers low-key shame new parents into thinking they will fail without their products… so STAY WOKE LADIES! All a baby needs is a tribe to look at it with heart eyes, and an occasional giggle when they fart. Don’t do anything just because it’s what’s trending on social media; invest in items that work best for your family.
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, here are items that were most loved by us during the fog that is newborn-ness. Even though those first couple months flew by, these are the items that were useful and registry worthy!
*discount listed at end of post
Dock A Tot*
I’ve talked about DockATot maybe once on the blog (here.) It was the only way Anakin would sleep in his bassinet and made transitioning to the crib a breeze. The design is comforting for baby, and easy on the eyes. – We still use for occasional naps in our bed and the office room
Swaddles*:
I wish we had our Ollie swaddle since the beginning! Anakin was so snug and happy in his. It was the only swaddle he couldn’t break out of and is a great transition swaddle. The price is not astronomical for how great it is, but some more affordable ones that last: copper pearl and target muslin ones. We still use all of ours to use as a mat on our dog hair infested home, a light blanket strolling through the grocery store, nursing covers when feeling creeper vibes, and entertainment producing man-made breezes.
PackNPlay:
I swore up and down that I did not need a pack n play… My sister kept telling me DON’T RETURN IT, YOU WILL USE IT. We had a crib, bassinet, and changing table, WHY DO I NEED IT? Well, it came pretty handy when we left the hospital with an hour to evacuate for a category 4 hurricane. Anakin’s first couple days were spend being changed in and sleeping in the PackNPlay accessories. We didn’t use it again until he started rolling, and it is the only way I can pee or vacuum peacefully nowadays. The once ugly PackNPlay has it’s beautiful home in our living room, praise God.
Carseat + Stroller:
It goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyways: you need to go places.
Boppy:
This is one of the multipurpose items that is always our go to! Nursing? Boppy. Bottle feeding? Boppy. Tummy time? Boppy. Resting? Boppy. Catching flights? Boppy. This is truly our most used item, and it is still in great condition.
4moms Bathtub:
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Something that I did not think we needed was this fancy tub. My tub is not as luxurious or safe as this amazing must-have (does it come in my size?) Anakin is almost too big for the sink baths, but it still is a favorite with the immediate temperature readings. As a military wife, there has already been times where I have no choice but to give him a bath solo (as early as three weeks old), so it was an amazing experience to have the relief of a calm, comfortable, and safe baby!
Zipper Pajamas:
After trying every type of pajama you could possibly try, any that zip from the foot to the neck are our favorite! They are easy for quick changes and keep baby warm up top as well. It was frustrating during middle of the night feedings and changes to turn on the lights because you can’t find which snap snaps where! We found ours at Target.
I hope this post was helpful for buying a purposeful gift for a loved one or registering for yourself! Below are a few coupons you can use, but please remember, everything is just a tool to make things easier. Babies need love and cuddles, not just things. You’re going to do great!
$10 off all DocksATots!– see full review here.

Guilt-Free Self-Love

 

 

 

When I was a child, I would dream about my life now. I prayed so hard to God, to the moon, and my dead grandpa for love and to become a mom. I wanted a baby Simba or a Barbie in my arms at all times. I wanted to comb it’s hair, dress it up, and push the belly button to hear a Spice Girls single. Since then, every complaint that came out of a mother’s mouth translated to ungrateful… I WANTED WHAT THEY HAD! I wanted to lose sleep, I wanted to change poop-y diapers, I wanted to stress about finances if it meant I had a baby to love. Still, I am careful to not complain about any part of motherhood, because I am living my biggest dream. This is my purpose; maybe that’s not enough for others, but this is mine.

There’s no “but…. *insert complaint*.” I will still not complain about being a mom. Being a mom is hard work; that’s not a complaint, that’s fact. The work you put into it is what you’ll get out. What you water, grows. If you pour into your marriage, it grows. If you pour into a relationship with God, through grace, it grows. If you pour into your business, guess what… it grows! Growth doesn’t happen over night, even if you dump your whole pitcher of water in – you might drown it. Just building habits of taking care of what you’re called to will result in growth.

Where I’ve failed as a mom, is barely pouring into myself… and when I do, I feel guilty. I have been pouring into (managing) my businesses, marriage, child, occasionally pets, and friends – that when I stopped to look into the mirror, I couldn’t recognize the potato looking back at me. I am not a superficial person at all, but I should at least be bathed and groomed occasionally, right? Here are the simple, affordable, and quick ways I’ve poured into myself:

Learn something – read a book, read a blog, visit my favorite University AKA: YouTube. Learn something that will make you a better you. For me, it’s been listening to church services while nursing or playing with Anakin. I’ve also made a goal to read 18 books this year (1 book a month until June, then 2 books a month). I’m one book down, and have already read more books then I did last year! Learning more about Anakin also makes me feel more confident – checking in with developmental leaps helps me understand him better, and makes me less anxious about change.

Start something for YOU – for me, it’s been this blog. This blog is my space to choose my words wisely. Some blogs maybe for venting, some maybe to encourage. Maybe you prefer privacy – a journal would be great!

Change your look – y’all, postpartum hair-loss is real. Some things you can not dodge, no matter how many prenatal vitamins you take. I went to my hair stylist for just a haircut to reshape my mane. Yay, no mom bun on the weekends!

Buy new clothes for YOU – I’ve shared my nursing friendly outfits for just about every occasion, but Mama, get something for you. You don’t even need to leave the house. I now understand why my sister doesn’t try on clothes before buying – ain’t no mama got the time! Online shops have been my best friend. I know my staple pieces, and I want clothes that don’t have to be nursing specific or have milk stains. I want boots that are a new style for me, because I’m not worried about my big feet in pointy shoes. They’re cute, I’m cute, my baby’s cute – we’re gon’ be so cute and confident together. This camo tee and these pointy boots have been my weekend jam.

Save money – this last month’s read was one from Dave Ramsey, and Lord Jesus, thank you for him! The confidence and control over our money has blessed us. Our home (AKA: me) has been so much more efficient since making changes little and small! It makes buying a shirt and boots no big deal for our single stable income military family. Save where you can (make you own coffee and taste the $5 that you just saved), buy bulk, but don’t forget to bless others!

Go to brunch – you don’t have to actually go to brunch, but see someone in person. Ask them how they are, encourage them, and pray for them. Spend time having an adult conversation that isn’t gossip or mindless. Talk about Dave Ramsey because that’s where all my conversations have led to this month.

Try new recipes – browse through Pinterest or make something interesting with what you have left before grocery day. We fell into a pasta funk that left us feeling horrible. Thanks to new veggie filled recipes, we have gone a full seven days of no pasta!

Turn off your phone – or at least take a break from social media. The endless scrolling of other people’s seemingly perfect marriages/ children/ outfits/ homes/ etc. can make us feel like we aren’t enough. God did not overcome the world so we can compare ourselves to it. You’re enough. Your messy mom bun, milked stained nursing tank, and pasta filled body can rest in His peace today.

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” – John 16:33

Thank you The Mint Julep Boutique for partnering with me in a guilt-free reset so I can better serve others. Please note that most of these can be done during nap time or while dad’s home! I have extreme anxiety about leaving Anakin (it’s getting worse) so maybe something in your mind means taking a longer time away from baby (and there’s nothing wrong with that!) We’re all being the best moms we can possibly be, and that is more then enough.