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Things We Love for Baby #2 Series: Chicco Fit2 and Bravofor2

Things We Love for Baby #2 Series: Chicco Fit2 and Bravofor2

One of the biggest changes in baby gear going from one kid to two, is that you now need ANOTHER car seat, and a stroller that’s twice the size of your really nice single stroller. We sold our jogger and regular stroller (although we kept our awesome compact GB Pockit stroller) because why would we ever be out with one kid in one stroller, and the other kid just hanging around or walking? With these kids being 2 years apart, there was no way we were getting away with that kind of thing, so we had to have a stroller for two, along with another car seat.

We received the Fit2 and Bravofor2 from Chicco, and I have to say I’m MEGA impressed. These two items absolutely make our list for things we love for Baby #2!!

Fit2 Infant Car Seat:

The infant car seat is the for two main reasons: 1) the base is SUPER easy to connect in the car, comes with a built-in leveler, and I love just clicking the seat into it in my van. 2) You can one-hand close the carrier handle. Whoever invented this = genius, because my daughter’s infant car seat needed two hands to fold the handle down. WHO HAS TWO HANDS TO DO THIS WITH WHEN YOU HAVE AN INFANT?! So yeah…the Fit2 infant seat is freaking amazing. To add to the pretty clever engineering of the seat, it has two stages for infants 0-12 months, and then from 12-24 months with extended leg room. The padding is also super soft and comfortable, feels really durable, and is machine washable for all of the fabulous spit-up moments!

Bravofor2 Double Stroller:

I knew I didn’t want one of those double-wides. I can hardly drive my own van straight into my garage…there’s no way I could maneuver a double-wide stroller without running over a friendly pigeon or someone’s foot while we were out. So I was really nervous to get into this Bravofor2 because it seemed a little daunting having both of my kids on one stroller at once. I was totally worried for nothing! First of all, it folds up amazingly well and easily. It’s about the same size as our old single jogger (a little bit bigger), so we’re really not sacrificing size. It fits right into the van, and will stand by itself in the garage.

The absolute beauty of it the Bravofor2 is the sit or stand function for the bigger kid. My daughter LOVES this, and thinks it’s so fun to ride standing up! When she gets tired, she sits. And when he outgrows the Fit2, the space for the car seat turns into a regular sitting stroller!

The stroller has two cup holders, and comes with a really convenient zippered pouch which fits my iPhoneX really well, along with a pair of sunglasses. This stroller can accommodate two kids each up to 40lbs, so I know this one will last us a while. I absolutely love it, and I would recommend both of these Chicco products to anyone looking for either an infant car seat system or a double stroller that is easily to maneuver with great functionality. If you have any questions feel free to email me! I did receive these items free of charge in exchange for a review, but all opinions are 100% real and my own. I’ve been using these two things since my son was born, and I absolutely love them both!!

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chicco bravofor2 fit2 review

My Keto Diary

My Keto Diary

As I write this, I’m on day 2. I have a 5 week old baby on my lap who today, won’t sleep unless he’s on me. A toddler who woke up in a bad mood, lost her cookies because I wouldn’t give her more hand sanitizer, and had a huge total morning meltdown. I didn’t eat anything until 12:45pm (hello forced intermittent fasting!). Toddler went down for a nap around 11, but baby wanted to just lay in my arms, so it took me an hour to make a Keto shake for lunch. An hour. And then another hour to actually drink it. 

Let’s go back to the very beginning though, since this is my first Keto Diary log on my blog. Here are some questions I’ve been asked on my Instagram page, where I’m sharing Instastories about my journey.

What is Keto?

Keto is basically eating HIGH fat, LOW carb and MODERATE protein, to cause your body to switch from using carbs and fuel, to FAT as fuel (putting your body into ketosis, a metabolic state). A Ketogenic diet isn’t new; it’s been around for a more than a few decades, and has been used to treat all kinds of health conditions (diabetes and epilepsy to name a couple). The best resource to find more quality info on Keto is this website. I’ve followed these guys on Facebook for a while, and their knowledge on Keto is tremendous. So if you’re looking for any more technical stuff, start there. My diary is more about my own accountability and sharing my journey vs technical mumbo jumbo that I’m not really qualified to answer, as I’m not a doctor, nutritionist, or anything like that.

Why are you eating this way?

We have two friends who have been eating Keto for a long time. We decided to give it a try a year and a half ago after I had my daughter. I lost all 50lbs of my pregnancy weight that I gained, and another 10lbs on top of it. I was never hungry, the food I could eat was delicious, I felt amazing, and the weight dropped off so easily it was like a weight loss commercial that wasn’t photoshopped.

These are my Keto Peanut Butter Fat Bombs that I turn into Keto-approved Buckeyes with some Lily’s Chocolate!

So why did you stop?

I don’t know, to be honest. It truly felt like a way of living, not a diet. I will say, it’s hard to eat this way when people in your life aren’t–for me anyway. We had family get togethers, picnics, vacations…and we fell off. I got pregnant a second time, and now here I am, with another 50lbs to lose, hopefully 60 again. And I know I can do it, because I already did it once.

How long did it take you to lose 60lbs the first time?

5 months.

Do you gradually go on Keto?

No. You go all at once. Or at least that’s what I’m doing. I’ve restricted my net carbs to 20g or less, which should put my body into ketosis in a week or so, just depending.

What books do you recommend?

Bacon & Butter by Celby Richoux, this book for Fat Bomb recipes, and anything by Maria Emmerich.

What apps do you use?

Carb Manager. I just paid for 3 months of it, as I wanted to be able to create meal groups, but there’s a free version. I LOVE this app. It kicks My Fitness Pal’s a$$ when it comes to low carb eating. Right now this is the only app I’m using.

What’s the point of your diary?

No one asked me this, but I figured I’d talk about it. I need/want the accountability, and I’m sure there’s someone out there that might find my journey interesting or helpful. Even if only one person out in the vast universe sees this and finds it helpful, amusing or even inspiring (that would be my goal), then it’s worth it. And also, if you’re that person, email me, because I want to be friends with you. Plus it’s also fun to track my progress for real!

My Stats:

Height: 5’9″

Weight on 5/15 (starting date): 201

Heaviest: 220 before giving birth (both times)

Lightest: 135 (high school….HA! I will likely not ever get back there…)

Goal: 150

I’ll be sharing my weekly progress on the blog, so if you like it, be sure to subscribe! Also, check out this Instagram for my Keto stories, and this Instagram, which is ONLY pics of my food, if you’re into that.

My Keto Instagram page with random not-great-quality food pics haha!

See you with an update next week! Feel free to email me with any questions!


Shop my favorite Keto stuff:

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keto diet weight loss journey

Helping Shelter Cats One Jug At A Time with Cat’s Pride®

Helping Shelter Cats One Jug At A Time with Cat’s Pride®
This post is sponsored by Cat’s Pride but the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

You may have seen my Litter Robot blog post where I talked about our kitties, but I didn’t talk about them in a lot of detail. We have two cats: Ben (more commonly called “Buttons”) and Spike. Ben is a ragdoll cat that I got from a breeder. I had always wanted a ragdoll cat! He’s a great cat, but when I thought he was getting lonely, I rescued Spike from a local shelter (this is him below!), and now I would never even consider getting a cat from a cat breeder.

Spike (who was almost called Irwin, Tucker or Pumpkin) was the poopiest looking cat ever…seriously. He and his siblings had apparently been found in a gutter in Philadelphia, and he had a huge mohawk of hair going down his back (hence the name Spike). He was a ratty, nasty, not-scared-of-anything, SUPER SWEET kitten and I couldn’t leave him. He’s been the most amazing cat, and I always say to the animals that if the house is burning down and I can only save one of you furry things, Spike is the one. I’m just kidding of course, but he is such a special cat to me. When I brought him home it was clear that he was taken from his mom too early, because he spent most of his time snuggling with me while sucking on his stomach. It sounds super gross, and it was kind of weird, but I pitied him so much. He’s always been my little fur baby. I feed him WAY too much, and spoil him a lot, but I think he deserves it!

There are so many shelter cats out there, and obviously we can’t rescue them all, but after learning about the Litter for Good™ program, now I know we can help in some way! For every green jug of Cat’s Pride® Fresh & Light® purchased, Cat’s Pride® will donate a pound of litter to animal welfare organizations across America, which makes me feel really good about purchasing this brand.

My Thoughts:

If you’re like me, you need the cat litter to WORK. I mentioned in my Litter Robot post that I use another brand of cat litter, but after learning about Cat’s Pride® and knowing their philanthropic efforts to help animals, I will definitely consider switching! If you want to switch cat litters, I suggest doing it VERY slowly so that your cats can get used to it. As you can see from the picture below, it’s a much more fine than other clumping litters, so make sure you slowly and gradually add the litter to your cat’s box in case they’re finicky.

Honestly the jug is much nicer than the cardboard box of litter, because I can pour it right into the Litter Robot instead of using a scooper in the Everclean. I haven’t tried this long enough to really speak on how well it works, but if you’re interested in my experience just shoot me an email and I’ll let you know how I liked its clumping abilities!

Where to Find It:

I found this litter at Walmart, but I almost missed it with Walmart’s aisle merchandising!! I found it right at the start of the litter block, and of course had my little helper with me. The company has a store locator on their website, so this is probably the easiest way to search for it in your area. It was $8.62 at my local Walmart, which is more than $10 cheaper than the other cat litter I’ve been using.

To learn more, visit their site and sign up for the free Cat’s Pride® Club to nominate a shelter to receive litter donation!

Fed is Best, the Second Time Around

Fed is Best, the Second Time Around

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I received product and compensation from Mead Johnson Nutrition to create this post written by me. All experiences and opinions expressed in this post are my own and not those of Mead Johnson Nutrition. You can contact Mead Johnson Nutrition with product related questions or comments toll free at 1-800-BABY-123 (1-800-222-9123).

It’s time to talk about a subject that for me, is probably the most controversial thing I’ve written about on my blog. I try to stay away from the hot topics, but this is one that really doesn’t deserve the hot-tempered responses that it will sometimes get, and moms certainly don’t need any more guilt than they already have; yet for some reason, this topic can leave us feeling MEGA mom guilt. So, let’s talk about it with ZERO guilt here:

Breastfeeding vs Formula Feeding

Here’s my story:

When my daughter was born, I intended on breastfeeding. While I was pregnant, it seemed like just a box to check. Am I going to breastfeed? Yes. Done. Next question? When she was born and had the perfect latch, according to several lactation consultants, I was ecstatic. My baby had it going on, knew what she was doing, and we were all set. When she had lost 10% of her body weight in a couple days, and my boobs were raw, bloody, and I literally cried when she latched, I about lost my sanity. Another consultant later, and we realized it wasn’t her. It was me.

This topic still makes me cry (in fact I’m crying writing it right now, but I’ll blame that on my pregnancy hormones with Baby #2).

When you have your heart set on doing something that you perceive is the BEST that can be given to your child, and you can’t do it, it’s heartbreaking. Our doctor recommended Enfamil®, and we started supplementing right away. At one point, I was formula feeding, breastfeeding and pumping, in this psychotic trifecta of raging post-partum hormones, and never felt worse about myself.

Somehow or another, I remember having this epiphany (probably thanks to my poor husband who literally had to sit there without any ways to comfort his emotionally-crazed wife) that no matter what, our daughter was fed, and she was fine. She was an amazing sleeper. An amazing eater. An amazing pooper. She was happy. She was loved. And finally, somehow, I was able to let go of the guilt—slowly—that my breasts wouldn’t function properly.

I trusted Enfamil® because it was what was recommended to me, but once I saw the results of my child gaining weight and being perfectly fine, I was a believer.

This time around, I’ve promised myself that I won’t be as emotionally unstable as I was the first time. I know that each time can be different—I mean, who knows, this time I might be a cow! But, I’m not counting on it. I am however, counting on my emotions to hopefully be stabilized sooner given the experience from my FIRST post-partum experience. I know that I trust Enfamil® to deliver the same quality results we had the first time. This time, I plan to play it by ear, but if we need to switch to formula, we’ll be using the new Enfamil NeuroPro™ formula, which is the first formula that has an exclusive MFGM and DHA blend for brain building benefits similar to those of breast milk*.

Enfamil® is dedicated to understanding the nutritional benefits of breast milk, and NeuroPro™ is born of that dedicated focus. It makes me feel good to know that the company I’m choosing to feed my child is so invested in the quality and performance of their product, and that they realize how important it is to come as close to breastmilk as possible, for those of us that can’t make it happen for ourselves.

To any moms struggling with what I struggled with, nothing anyone says can help make you feel better—so to you, I just send some huge hugs. Realize that getting your baby fed is what matters most—even if right now you feel lost, like I did. If you’re struggling and need some mom-chat, feel free to email me; I’m always happy to share some positive comments and thoughts; because that’s what we should be doing as moms: supporting each other!!

If you’re interested in learning more about Enfamil®, visit here or call 1-800-BABY-123 (1-800-222-9123)for more information and to request a free sample!

*In amounts supported by clinical research. As measured by Bayley cognitive scores. 

This is sponsored by Enfamil® Infant Formula.

enfamil neuropro

Ideas for Hospital Birth Photos

Ideas for Hospital Birth Photos

I can’t believe our little guy is 3 weeks old today! It seems like just yesterday, and I’m trying to relive all of the moments in my head to keep the memory fresh. I shared my birth stories and some pictures in this post, wanted to share more!

When my daughter was born, we didn’t have a professional photographer take pictures in the hospital. To be honest, I was a little bit like “What? Why would anyone do that?”. Then I saw some examples of post-birth pics in the hospital, and realized I HAD to have someone come in for any other kids we had!

We did get amazing pictures the first time around, this one on my About Me page being my favorite, but for our second baby I found a local photographer named Arrionna from Little Poppy Photography. I found her randomly on a local Facebook group, and people…if you’re in Minneapolis and need ANY type of photography done, she is AMAZING. In fact…and I haven’t told her this yet (haha hope you’re ok with this, girl!), my husband and I decided she’s going to be our “go-to” photographer for basically everything from now on. She captured these incredible shots after our son was born, and I’m just absolutely in love with them and wanted to share.

So here are a few must-have shots, in my opinion, that you need to get when you have your baby and are sitting in the post-delivery room, half delusional, totally in love, and wanting to remember the moments. You don’t necessarily need a pro photographer–a really nice nurse (like the one who took this shot from my daughter’s birth) would be fine too!!

1. Welcome, Baby!

Get some pics of just your new little one, especially with their hospital bracelets! (Then save those bracelets for a clear Christmas ornament later on!!). Take closeups as well as some full body shots. Here are some of the shots Arrionna got:

2. Dad and Baby

Here are some ideas. Seeing the love in my husband’s face for his children is enough to make me fall in love with him all over again!

3. Mom and Baby (alone and with siblings!)

I love these pictures of me and my son. I will always cherish the pictures that have the two of us together, but I adore the ones of my daughter as well. It’s hard to get a toddler to just pose, so we didn’t get a ton of these (actually the best ones included a package of Famous Amos chocolate chip cookies because that got her attention and to sit down for a second! ha!). Here are some ideas:

4. Family Time

My favorite pictures are of all of us together. We got a lot of us and the baby, and tried to get some of the four of us. Here are our favorites:

I hope you enjoyed these pictures. They’re so special to me, and our photographer did an amazing job capturing candid and real pictures of our love for each other, and our children. It’s a really amazing thing to look at these, and think back on the miracle that had just happened in those moments, so whether you have a professional photographer or not, make sure you take pictures! You’ll look back on those raw and real moments and they’ll always mean a lot to you. Thank you, Arrionna, for capturing our whole world here!

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hospital birth pictures

The Mother’s Day Gift Every Mom Will Love

The Mother’s Day Gift Every Mom Will Love

It’s so hard to find the perfect Mother’s Day gift for that special new mom, whether it’s your wife, friend, your own mom, or even just a little gift for yourself. After discovering Pink and Blue Co and their amazing jewelry, I can very confidently say that I’ve found the perfect Mother’s Day gift that every mom will love…guaranteed.

I found Pink & Blue Co. a while ago, and have wanted one of their gorgeous pieces for a while. When I received my engraved Olivia necklace, I couldn’t believe how gorgeous it was in person. It’s the most beautiful commemorative piece of jewelry I’ve ever seen, and I will cherish it forever. Each side of the Olivia is engraved; two sides with my kids’ names, and 2 sides with their date of birth and measurements. It’s a beautiful 50mm .925 sterling pendant, and looks gorgeous in sterling, gold or rose gold plated options, but I chose rose gold. I really love how classic rose gold is; to be honest it’s the only rose gold piece I have. Everything else is sterling or white gold, so it’s a nice way to change up my style.

The Olivia is the perfect way to carry around your children’s stats close to your heart, and it’s perfect for those with two kids; however, it’s not the only beautiful style Pink & Blue Co. have. One of my absolute favorites is their Elle bar necklace, and their bracelets are gorgeous too! I think their pricing is super reasonable (the Olivia is $110 for sterling), and you can get 10% off if you sign up for their email newsletter.

If you’re looking for something a little different for your wife or a best friend that recently had a baby, this is the most perfect and gorgeous gift that they will absolutely cherish for their whole lives. There is truly nothing like that moment when your child is born, and being able to carry a remembrance of the day around your neck is truly special.

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Pink and Blue Co. Mother's Day Olivia Necklace

In collaboration with Pink & Blue Co.