Category Archives: Family

Photo a Day: Week 13

Photo a Day: Week 13 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear

Okay, so I’m a day late this week, but I have good reason. Yesterday we were traveling home from a week vacation and I was driving. So yeah, I couldn’t really get my Photo a Day for this week up while doing that. We visited family in NY, and had a great time lounging around and just enjoying ourselves, as you’ll see in this week’s photos.

Saturday

Photo a Day: Week 13 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Got to Nana’s house and discovered he left two of his toy cars there last time we visited.

Sunday

Photo a Day: Week 13 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Vacations are for lounging around.

Monday

Photo a Day: Week 13 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Vacations are also for amusement park fun! I’ll have more pics and info on our fun at Seabreeze Amusement Park in a few days.

Tuesday

Photo a Day: Week 13 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
More lounging, but on her gigantic teddy bear this time.

Wednesday

Photo a Day: Week 13 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Vacations are good for dance parties too.

Thursday

Photo a Day: Week 13 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
And more lounging.

Friday

Photo a Day: Week 13 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
And when we got home, we had a nice bunch of cherry tomatoes ready to pick and a cucumber from the neighbors. Guess I’ll cut up a salad tonight!

Did you miss a previous week? Check them out here!

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8 | Week 9 | Week 10 | Week 11 | Week 12

*Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

From Grief to Joy: Giving Hope to Infertile Couples

From Grief to Joy: Giving Hope to Infertile Couples | #infertility #IVF #eggdonor

Today I have a guest post on the topic of infertility, and the option of egg donors and IVF. This is not something I personally know anything about, as I have not had to deal with infertility myself, but I’m happy that my guest poster has graciously agreed to share some information about the options of egg donors and IVF treatment, for those readers who are going through infertility themselves. While I have no experience with it, I do have friends who struggle with infertility, so I’m happy to have this topic covered today.

Regardless of the life plans we make, the unexpected is bound to happen. Finding out your eggs aren’t viable for conception – or you’re unable to carry a pregnancy to term – is about as unexpected as it gets. Women struggling to get pregnant never imagine they’ll hear from their doctor that they are infertile. However, a couple’s dream of having a child and family reaches far beyond their diagnosis. This is why the egg donation process gives hope to couples struggling with infertility.

Emotional Turmoil

The emotions following such monumental news can be very intense. Negative emotions such as grief, anger, a sense of inadequacy, hopelessness, and depression are normal responses in such a stressful situation. Many couples seek professional counseling to deal with the resulting shock and emotional fallout.

Choosing Donor Eggs – a New Hope

For couples coping with infertility, choosing IVF using donor eggs can be a solution leading towards parenthood and a happy family. Nevertheless, the thought of a future child not being genetically connected to the mother can be quite challenging to deal with. So, coming to terms with the decision to use this method is very important for the mother’s overall well-being. In some cases, feelings of resentment towards the partner might develop as he would be the biological father to the child – thus having a ‘closer’ or ‘more real’ bond. Biological connection doesn’t equate to a stronger bond, however!

But this, too, is a normal part of the grieving process, and doesn’t make you a bad person in any way. Some couples even decide to use donor sperm as well. Honest and open communication between the partners is imperative for making a healthy compromise.

Choosing the Right Donor

Finding the right donor is perhaps the hardest and lengthiest step of the process for many couples. The criteria which are important to each of the partners may differ significantly. Therefore, it could take up to a few months for the couple to reach a mutually acceptable decision. Some women may also choose a close relative to be the donor, so they feel genetically closer to the future child.

Fresh or Frozen Donor Egg Cycle

Though largely similar, there are some key differences, including pros and cons, between these two methods.

Fresh donor egg cycles require the donor to be localized in your area and available at your convenience. This considerably limits the pool of available donors. Next, the donor’s medications, costs of travel, as well as other relevant costs make this method much more expensive than a frozen donor egg cycle. However, it offers slightly better chances of a successful pregnancy.

On the other hand, frozen donor egg cycle offers a substantially larger donor pool – at the fertility clinic, you are able to choose a donor from a national egg donor registry. Frozen donor eggs are more available and easier to obtain, plus all costs regarding the donor are already factored into the price of the cycle. This makes this method significantly cheaper than fresh.

Legal and Ethical Concerns

It is important to have all legalities on paper before implantation. Thankfully, if using a donor egg bank, they take care of this for you. Otherwise, you need a lawyer to draft a contract regarding the donor’s rights and involvement in the child’s life.

Quick Overview of the Implantation Process

After the initial interview, you will undertake several tests to determine if your uterus can carry a pregnancy to term. If all is well, you may begin the journey of donor egg IVF. Depending on the donor egg cycle you’ve chosen, the process of implantation differs.

In a fresh donor egg cycle, you and your donor are brought to the clinic and undergo a cycle synchronization treatment before the donor’s eggs are extracted, fertilized, and implanted into your uterus.

In a frozen donor egg cycle, the cryopreserved eggs are transported to your clinic where they are thawed and fertilized with the sperm of your partner or donor. After a period of 3 – 4 days, the most viable embryos are implanted inside your uterus.

The Big Moment and Happily Ever-After

After two weeks, you’ll be called back to the fertility clinic to take your HCG pregnancy test. This period of ‘calm before the storm’ can be accompanied by mixed feelings of anxiety, hopefulness, eagerness, or even a sense of impending doom if prior IVF treatments weren’t successful. Proper counseling and emotional support from your partner is vital to prepare yourself for the final outcome, whatever it may be. Nonetheless, when all is well and you are preparing bottles or cleaning up after your bundle of joy, you won’t be spending time thinking about genetics.

From Grief to Joy: Giving Hope to Infertile Couples | #infertility #IVF #eggdonor

The journey to parenthood can be long, hard, and costly – both emotionally and financially – but it pales in comparison to the immeasurable happiness and fulfillment of having a child. The latest advancements in medicine offer hope to many couples who might otherwise give up on their lifelong dream of becoming parents. There’s always hope!

*This is a guest post. Infertility, egg donors, and IVF treatment are not something I have personal experience with. Should you have serious questions about any of these, please consult with your physician. Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Photo a Day: Week 12

Photo a Day: Week 12 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear

This week has been full of fun and there’s no stopping us. We’re preparing for a road trip tomorrow, as next week is our last summer hoorah trip because as you’ll see, school is starting soon. Have your kids started school yet? We’re less than a month away!

Saturday

Photo a Day: Week 12 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
We finally have our first tomatoes that haven’t been devoured by fruit worms. It’s a small, but tasty bounty.

Sunday

Photo a Day: Week 12 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
When daddy leaves a shirt lying around, this girl jumps at the chance to wear it, even if it is on backwards.

Monday

Photo a Day: Week 12 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Today she wanted to help pick the ripe tomatoes off the plants. And of course she gobbled them all up afterwards.

Tuesday

Photo a Day: Week 12 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
We don’t just have tomatoes coming to life, but these huge sunflowers are blooming up too.

Wednesday

Photo a Day: Week 12 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Not perfectly smooth, but I’d say it’s not bad for my first at-home acrylic job.

Thursday

Photo a Day: Week 12 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
It’s official! We are starting school and I’ve got all the feels.

Friday

Photo a Day: Week 12 | #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Today was our son’s last day of summer tennis camp, so they had a huge BBQ for all the kids. Until next summer…

Did you miss a previous week? Check them out here!

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8 | Week 9 | Week 10 | Week 11

*Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Photo a Day: Week 11

Photo a Day: Week 11 #photoaday #photoadayforayear

As usual, my kids are the highlight of this week’s edition of Photo a Day. What can I say? They always steal the show.

Saturday

Photo a Day: Week 11 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
I guess she wanted to go swimming.

Sunday

Photo a Day: Week 11 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Headphones turned mutant buster goggles.

Monday

Photo a Day: Week 11 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Minus the creepy look, he wanted to ride the decorative lion out front.

Tuesday

Photo a Day: Week 11 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Can’t have nice things when you have kids. Can’t even have a bottle of water without a pen and colored pencil in it.

Wednesday

Photo a Day: Week 11 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Speaking of having nice things, someone decided to take their art to the floor today. Guess it could be worse.

Thursday

Photo a Day: Week 11 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Learning to dust.

Friday

Photo a Day: Week 11 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
A big brain needs a big pencil.

Did you miss a previous week? Check them out here!

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8 | Week 9 | Week 10

*Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

KIDNAP Movie Screening + Halle Berry

KIDNAP Movie Screening + Halle Berry #KidnapMovie #DontMessWithMom #HalleBerry #moviescreening #LoewsAMC34th
~I received a complimentary invite to attend this KIDNAP movie screening. As always, opinions are still 100% my own.~

So, you’ve probably seen the trailer for Halle Berry’s new movie, KIDNAP. But just in case you haven’t, check it out!

 

Is your heart pumping yet? If you’re a parent, I’m sure it is. After watching the trailer, I just knew this movie would keep me on my toes and, as a mother, was something I could relate to.

KIDNAP Movie Screening + Halle Berry #KidnapMovie #DontMessWithMom #HalleBerry #moviescreening #LoewsAMC34th

KIDNAP Movie Screening + Halle Berry #KidnapMovie #DontMessWithMom #HalleBerry #moviescreening #LoewsAMC34th

Last night, I got the amazing opportunity to attend a screening of KIDNAP at Loews AMC on 34th, in New York City. Of course, I accepted the invite and couldn’t wait to check out the movie. But it wasn’t just a night off for mom to enjoy herself, albeit that’s exactly what I did.

KIDNAP Movie Screening + Halle Berry #KidnapMovie #DontMessWithMom #HalleBerry #moviescreening #LoewsAMC34th

Halle Berry made an appearance just before the movie and to top it off, actually sat with everyone to watch it! I knew she was expected to make an appearance, but actually watching the movie with us made my night. And it wasn’t just Halle who was there. Chris McGuinn, who stars opposite of Halle, was in attendance too, watching the movie herself.

KIDNAP Movie Screening + Halle Berry #KidnapMovie #DontMessWithMom #HalleBerry #moviescreening #LoewsAMC34th

It was definitely a fun and well-deserved night, if I do say so myself. And if you’re a parent who loves their kids and would go to the ends of the earth for them, KIDNAP is a movie for you. It pulls at your heart strings, brings about one of your absolute worst fears, and shows the true love and determination of a mother who WILL NOT stop until her son is back in her arms.

What would you do if your child were kidnapped, right in front of your eyes, nonetheless?

KIDNAP hits theaters tomorrow, August 4th, just in time for some weekend entertainment!

KIDNAP Movie Screening + Halle Berry #KidnapMovie #DontMessWithMom #HalleBerry #moviescreening #LoewsAMC34th

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*I received a complimentary invite to attend this KIDNAP movie screening. My opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand.  Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand.  Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

6 Tips for Teaching Kids Oral Hygiene

6 Tips for Teaching Kids Oral Hygiene #MouthWatchers #oralhygiene
~Thank you to Mouth Watchers® for providing product to the Making Time family and to Dr. Ronald Plotka for these amazing tips.~

With it being back to school season and all, it’s a good time to think and talk about routines. One thing that should be in everyone’s daily routine is oral hygiene. As adults, we know the importance of oral hygiene, but getting our kids on board can be a little difficult to say the least.

Dr. Ronald Plotka, the founder of Mouth Watchers®, has a few tips for us parents on how to teach our children that good oral hygiene is essential to their health and well-being.

1. Stay away from sugar.

Okay, I’ll be the first to admit this one is hard. While sugar is an awesome treat for the taste buds, it’s definitely not a treat for teeth. So keep candies, cakes, ice cream, and pastries limited to special occasions.

6 Tips for Teaching Kids Oral Hygiene #MouthWatchers #oralhygiene

2. Skip soda.

For some this may be hard, but for my family it’s actually not. My kids are ages 2 and 5, and to this day neither one of them has had soda. On the other hand, I do enjoy a nice fizzy soda every now and then, but right now my kids recognize it as mommy’s drink and know they can’t sip from my cup. If your kids want something with a little flavor, try offering them flavored water or juices that are low in sugar.

3. Fill up on fluoride.

Fluoride is good for little pearly whites. In fact, fluoride toothpastes reduce cavities in kids from 15% to 30%. Even the fluoride in public water supply reduces cavity rates by up to 40%. Good thing we drink the filtered water from our fridge!

4. Set up a schedule.

Oral hygiene should be part of any good routine. Try making it a family affair and have everyone brush their teeth at the same time. I’m not saying get the whole family in the bathroom at once because hey, that just ain’t happening, especially in this house. But while you’re brushing your teeth, have your kiddo practice brushing his. All it takes is a pea-sized amount of toothpaste on his Mouth Watchers® Youth Manual Toothbrush.

6 Tips for Teaching Kids Oral Hygiene #MouthWatchers #oralhygiene

My son is so used to me brushing his teeth that he doesn’t even want to try it himself, and that is not going to fly anymore. He needs to learn how to properly clean his own teeth and take control of his own oral hygiene.

5. Make it fun to floss.

Let’s take a poll. How many of you actually floss on a daily basis? Or even floss at all? I’ll admit that I am definitely slacking in the floss department. Make flossing fun by creating a fun flossing activities or a reward chart.

One activity I saw not too long ago, that peaked my interest, was using a Mega Block and putting some peanut butter between the pegs. Then give your child a string of yarn to floss the peanut butter out from between the pegs. It’s just like flossing teeth, but on a bigger and obviously more fun scale! If you want to make it more challenging, try using a LEGO and letting them use actual floss.

6. Say goodbye to pacifiers.

Now, I’m not one to judge the way other parents do their parenting. We’re all different and I respect that, but I will say that when I see kids who have to be at least three years old still with a pacifier in their mouth, I start to question things. The presence of a pacifier can harm the development and growth of the mouth and teeth. Prolonged use can cause changes in the shape of the roof of the mouth and create problems with tooth alignment.

6 Tips for Teaching Kids Oral Hygiene #MouthWatchers #oralhygiene

So get rid of that pacifier as soon as possible! Luckily, my son was done with his by about 15 months and my daughter never even took to a pacifier, so we never had a problem there.

Start teaching good oral care at an early age. Encourage your kids by practicing healthy hygiene habits at home and with help from Mouth Watchers®! With the antimicrobial and flossing bristles that make up Mouth Watchers® toothbrushes, the whole family will feel like they just visited the dentist.

How are you teaching your kids good oral hygiene habits?

Connect with : Website | Facebook | Twitter

6 Tips for Teaching Kids Oral Hygiene #MouthWatchers #oralhygiene

Shop Mouth Watchers®: Travel Toothbrush $5.99 | Youth Manual Toothbrush $4.99 | Power Toothbrush $24.99 | Year Supply Adult Toothbrush $20.99

*Thank you to Mouth Watchers® for providing product to the Making Time family and to Dr. Ronald Plotka for these amazing tips. My opinions are still 100% my own and in no way influenced by the brand.  Any claims or statistics should be confirmed with the brand.  Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.


Photo a Day: Week 10

Photo a Day: Week 10 #photoadayforayear #photoaday

Another busy week gone, and 7 more photos to share. Enjoy!

Saturday

Photo a Day: Week 10 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
Sometimes you just need a little water fun in your own back yard.

Sunday

Photo a Day: Week 10 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
My little barista is making me a coffee.

Monday

Photo a Day: Week 10 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
Just in time for shark week, my son got a new pair of shark shorts.

Tuesday

Photo a Day: Week 10 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
This was once a dress. Now it’s a tunic kind of top. #ihopeitjustshrunk

Wednesday

Photo a Day: Week 10 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
If you follow me on IG, you’ve probably already seen and heard this. But I wore my house shoes to drop my son off at camp. As we walked out he said, “No mom. You’re socks and shoes.” I didn’t think anything of it because I wasn’t getting out of the car. He likes to walk to the tennis courts by himself (I sit in the car and watch to make sure he gets where he needs to be). He had different plans today and asked me to walk with him. Haha! Guess the joke’s on me. But that’s okay. #noshame

Thursday

Photo a Day: Week 10 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
This is another one I posted on IG, but this chicken was so good I just have to share. I thawed out a pack of chicken, not knowing what I was going to make with it. Ended up with this fresh and delicious, chicken and mushroom dish. I think I might share it on the blog soon because I’ll definitely be making it again!

Friday

Photo a Day: Week 10 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
Just a little sister trying to chase her big brother. They do this every day when we pick him up from tennis camp.

Did you miss a previous week? Check them out here!

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8 | Week 9

*Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Photo a Day: Week 9

Photo a Day: Week 9 #photoadayforayear #photoaday

Man, Friday came fast this week and it’s time for “Photo a Day.” This week my daughter tends to be in a lot of photos, but we’re together 24/7 and sometimes I just can’t handle the cuteness. Enjoy!

Saturday

Photo a Day: Week 9 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
Just a little shoe shopping.

Sunday

Photo a Day: Week 9 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
Easy like Sunday morning.

Monday

Photo a Day: Week 9 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
It’s a rock-n-roll kind of day.

Tuesday

Photo a Day: Week 9 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
Another week, another Tuesday of soccer.

Wednesday

Photo a Day: Week 9 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
Life is rough.

Thursday

Photo a Day: Week 9 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
You know you’re an adult when you get excited over new decor.

Friday

Photo a Day: Week 9 #photoadayforayear #photoaday
When it’s hot out, the heat makes you do crazy things like eat ice cream. This kid NEVER eats ice cream. He’s so picky he misses out on the good stuff, but not today.

Did you miss a previous week? Check them out here!

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7 | Week 8

*Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.

Secure Your Spot in the 2017 Holiday Gift Guide

Making Time's 2017 Holiday Gift Guide is in the works and this is your opportunity to gain holiday exposure. Spots will fill up fast so contact me today! #HolidayGiftGuide #HGG #giftideas

No, it’s not Christmas in July. But it is time for me to start working on this year’s Holiday Gift Guide. I want to make sure my readers have plenty of time to plan their shopping lists and maybe even help them add to their own wish list.

Spots in the Gift Guide will fill up fast, so if you would like your brand/product to be considered for inclusion, email me as soon as possible.

Holiday Gift Guide Details

As of right now, I plan to have 4 main categories for the Gift Guide – Babies & Kids, Gifts for Her, Gifts for Him, Home & Kitchen (includes food items).

  • Full feature review within 2 weeks of receiving product ($25 minimum), including pricing and where to buy.
  • Social media shares across Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest, YouTube (if applicable).
  • Links back to the brand’s website and social media accounts.
  • Inclusion in the gift guide, which will be published no later than early to mid-November (this will be a new blog post that includes a photo and link back to the full feature review).
  • Additional social media shares of the gift guide, so it’s double exposure.
  • Optional: Host a giveaway in which the brand will ship the prize directly to the winner. Making Time’s giveaway policy for sponsors can be found here.
  • Optional: Offer readers an exclusive savings code.
  • Optional: Should $75+ in product be provided, the brand will receive a 300×300 side banner ad for 30 days.

If you would like a sponsored spot in the Gift Guide without providing product, there will be a $50 charge (paid via PayPal). If you’d like more info on this option, please email me and I will provide additional details.

Check out the 2016 Holiday Gift Guide!

Don’t miss this chance for holiday exposure! Email me today because spots will fill up fast!

Photo a Day: Week 8

Photo a Day: Week 8 #photoaday #photoadayforayear

I’ve only posted on the blog once this week, and it’s because I’ve been laying low and spending a lot of time with family. You’ll see in this week’s photos it has been a week of busy park going and there are no plans of slowing down anytime soon. But that’s what the summer’s for right? Fun in the sun!

Saturday

Photo a Day: Week 8 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
Never a dull moment with this one. She’s wearing her elephant costume from last Halloween.

Sunday

Photo a Day: Week 8 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
A little snack and relaxation at the park!

Monday

Photo a Day: Week 8 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
New week and more tennis camp.

Tuesday

Photo a Day: Week 8 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
While brother was at soccer practice, we were goofing off a bit.

Wednesday

Photo a Day: Week 8 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
I needed a little at-home spa refresher to make through the rest of the week.

Thursday

Photo a Day: Week 8 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
When you wear thong sandals to the park all week, you end up with triangular tan lines.

Friday

Photo a Day: Week 8 #photoaday #photoadayforayear
TGIF because I’m dying. Walked my son to tennis camp this morning and this was the result. A one hour walk, 30 minutes each way AND I still have to go back to get him. #dead #toohotforthis

Did you miss a previous week? Check them out here!

Week 1 | Week 2 | Week 3 | Week 4 | Week 5 | Week 6 | Week 7

*Please see this blog’s full policies and disclosure here.