Shirudo AGR Antioxidant Lotion

Shirudo AGR Antioxidant Lotion
PMLE Symptom Prevention! Click image to find out more and BUY!

Saturday, May 9, 2020

Shirudo Brand 20% off for Mother’s Day!

Yay! To get you ready for summer sun, Shirudo is offering 20% off through tomorrow with code: MOM20!!

Click on the big Shirudo bottle on this blog (or the link below) to shop now and don’t forget to enter the coupon code at checkout!

Cheers - and Happy Mother’s Day!

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Sometimes Too Much is Just .... Well.... Too Much!!!!

Lots and lots of things to update, so instead of trying to get them all in with one gigantic post and skim over things I'll make a list instead.  My goal is to come back and fill in the gap on ALL these stories and topics over the summer.... we shall see! Ha!  Baby boy #3 has knocked us on our heels a bit!

1) As of yesterday, I now have a middle schooler. I have no idea how this has happened .... where does time go?!  He's the proud new owner of an iPhone.  Not sure how I feel about it but it was becoming inevitable.  The whole "everyone else has one" argument was becoming less and less absurd.  Send me your best tips on how to keep the reigns on this as we move into the middle school years of wreckage. Ack!

2)  MANY MANY of you became aware of this blog because of my LOVE of Shiurdo and their amazing, life-changing AGR lotion that had helped me and tons of other control their PMLE symptoms from the sun.  It's now summer and you need to know they've introduced several new products including a lip balm!  Can't wait to try it - you should definitely check it out!   There's also a gigantic pic of it at the top of the blog (mostly cause I couldn't figure out how to make it smaller! lol)

3) We're headed to Hawaii with my husbands family in July - it's the furthest we've taken the kids by far and I already have anxiety about it.  CBD oil anyone!?  Wine?! Ugh .... we'll figure it out.  A party of five all on our own, traveling becomes an issue of how many hotel rooms do we need and how many rows does the rental SUV have?  We'll likely need a vacay after the vacay.

Ok, that's it for now.... I'll leave you with an adorable pic of the fam and perhaps someone can keep me accountable for actually coming back and writing updates before 2020.

PS:  I know the baby needs a haircut 
PPS: That's mostly directed at family members 
PPPS: Yeah, I know he's not a baby anymore :( but he sure does love his bros :)

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Sunday, May 8, 2016

Apple Watch vs FitBit Charge HR: A Real Life Fit Mom Review {Which Should I Buy? Which is better?}

Ever since I started working out with my Polar heart rate monitor about 10 years ago, it's kinda become an addiction for me at the gym - or when running outside, etc...    BUT, who likes wearing the stupid heart rate monitor chest strap?  It's probably the most accurate heart rate monitor method I've found thus far, but it's annoying... and REALLY annoying when you've got a baby already crowding the space between your chest and pelvis.

Anyway, over the years I've tried a lot of things .. the soft Polar strap, the original plastic one, and even other methods / contraptions like Body Media, etc...

One thing that has evolved with heart rate and movement detection is when and how much info we want collected.   Meaning - it's not just for exercising anymore.  We want to see our resting daily heart rate averages, calorie burn, etc... and we don't just want to know how many steps we've taken, but how many floors we've scaled, miles we walked, and WHERE we walked, etc... ALL DAY.

But why stop there ...

With the introduction of the Apple Watch - we can now do things we never thought possible - from our wrist.   {REAL TALK ALERT} I'm NOT a techy by ANY stretch, so this is not a complete and in-depth technical review of the FitBit OR the Apple Watch.  BUT, as a busy, fit mom, I think my experience with each can help someone looking to choose between the two - or possibly upgrade from the FitBit to the Apple Watch, like I did a couple months ago!


Pros -  
~Price, under $200.
~ I loved wearing it overnight to see my sleep patterns AND as a silent wakeup alarm, which I think my husband really appreciated.  
~I really liked having the simple and eye-pleasing app on my iPhone that would show me my daily, weekly, monthly progress and resting HR, plus interact with FitPal - but I haven't been entering calories, etc.. since I've been pregnant, so thus far, I've not missed this feature.
~Caller ID is a HUGE upgrade over the previous FitBit models... though it didn't work consistently ... which isn't really a knock on the HR, it just has to be pretty close to your phone to work.
~Battery lasts several days without having to be re-charged.

Cons -
~Accuracy.  I reallllyy have some questions about the heart rate accuracy on this.  I'd look down midway through a workout and the HR readout would be 0 .... like, often.  Annoying when I was working my ass off.  The steps and such I think were pretty good, but the HR and calorie estimate I didn't fully trust.
~The little screen was a bit hard to see in bright sun.
~Lack of features and GPS - although FitBit does have an option with GPS and I really didn't miss features until I got the iWatch.  
~This is a pro AND con, but the company sent me 2 free replacements within about 15 months time because the face cracked on my first one and my second one basically just died.  The customer service cannot be beat.  They didn't beat me up over dates and receipts, etc... and I didn't even have to return the broken ones.  MAJOR thumbs up on customer service!
~Not waterproof - though I wore it in my pool accidentally for a few seconds a couple times without a problem.
~Difficult to learn how to put on yourself.

Best -  Silent alarm that you can use as a morning alarm, among other uses throughout the day as reminders!

Worst - Accuracy ... not collecting my hard work and peaking HRs during workouts is super annoying.

Final Take -  Simple and easy if you want a watch that keeps up with your busy lifestyle, tracks steps, has a long battery life, and you mostly want it for tracking workouts.  I'd still recommend this to someone looking for a cost effective way to get several good features.


Pros -
~Custom color and size combos
~Many different uses besides just tracking workouts ... my faves include having the current outdoor temperature, ability to set a quick timer, time, date, and notification alert on the home screen with a quick glance.  Need a jacket this morning?  Temp is right there.  Remember to turn off TV after 30 minutes of screen time for the kiddos?  Easy.  What the hell day is it?  All right there on your home screen just by looking at your wrist. LOVE.
~Of course loving not having to flip through my entire bag to find my phone when it's ringing when I'm out at a store, I can silence it from my watch ... also see and respond to text messages without finding my phone.  It's like the phone-watch equivalent of keyless-go in my car! Thumbs up!  When we're out on a date night, or I'm out with friends, I don't feel the need to have my phone sitting out on the table to make sure the sitter or daddy is calling with issues ...
~HR accuracy ... so I bought this to replace my FitBit HR so the heart rate tracker was super important to me.  Why do I think this is more accurate?  When I'm doing an Orange Theory class (which a chest strap and HR up on the big monitor) my Apple Watch has the same HR within 1 or 2 BBM.  I trust the HR strap, therefore I think this watch is fairly accurate during workouts.
~The look of the watch is a bit more refined and nice ... I even wore it to the Kentucky Derby in a nice dress and hat because I can't stand to go without it!!

Cons -
~Price .. it's about twice the price of the FitBit HR... AND as with anything Apple, there's always going to be a better version (probably) within a year of when you purchase ... so like with the iPhone, you gotta keep up with the technology!
~Still not waterproof - and I haven't dare tested how 'water-resistant' it is.
~Battery life --- grrrr --- every night guys.  Every night.  i've gotten used to it now and have a cool nightstand charger that I love, but say goodbye to the silent alarms and sleep pattern analysis.
~Doesn't check HR constantly like the FitBit does.
~Glass screen ... hasn't been a problem yet, we'll see.

Best -  Accuracy on HR when working out and all the fun extras - like the weather, texts, etc....

Worst -  Having to charge it every night

Final Take - LOVE!  I've had it about 2 months now and I'm sold.  Just like with every other Apple device,  I can't live without it and I'll be getting the next version they come out with when that finally happens.  I think this is a great device for busy moms ... it kinda does it all!  I can't think of a feature I wish it had, but I do miss sleeping in it and getting the silent 'vibe' alarms to wake up.


For me, it's the Apple Watch.  Honestly, it's kinda comparing apples to oranges (no pun intended) but I'm sure there are some people out there looking to choose or upgrade and hopefully this will help!

Happy Mother's Day! :)

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Why the Gym Locker Room is Basically a Spa Day for a New Mom

For years after having the kiddos ( you know, those years spent getting your groove / body back to were it once was .... which, let's face it, it's not .... but that's another post ...) I became a gym rat.  It was my place of refuge - it's "what we did" during the day in addition to the typical new-mom circuit of Target and Panera Bread.

Two-three hours of babysitting with the YMCA employees who grew to be more like family than anything else ... that was something I looked forward to daily.  They would feed, change, soothe.... hell yes.  And I was only - at max - 100 feet away in the building somewhere.  Needless to say, I was counting down the 6 week "off" period with each baby waiting for my small, but meaningful reprieve from baby duty .... even if it meant sweating my ass off on the treadmill.

As a former employee of Starbucks (I still to this day consider that the absolute best job I ever had ... like I was actually the lucky one to have been able to work there .... again, another post! ;) we received some of the best training available - in my opinion.  In my 4 years of employment, we received training on customer service that I've carried with me to this day - including creating what we called the "Third Place" within the store.  The third place is not your home or work, but it's that "other" place you feel comfortable and look forward to coming to.  It should be easy and nice and enjoyable .... your "third place" .... In the 12-24 months following a new child, the YMCA gym was most certainly my "third place".

Hell, sometimes I was tired!  Like, "no one slept last night and we can't find shoes so we wear our Crocs in the middle of winter" kind of tired.

We still headed to the gym.  Why?  Well, there's this magical place where no children are allowed.  Where the showers are cleaned by someone else and there's no little fist knocking at the door asking for Goldfish and milk while you're trying to rinse shampoo from your hair for the first time in 6 days.  Where there are other adults, dressing themselves without asking for help, and the mirrors are clear of grimy handprints and the floor free from baby toys and markers without lids.  Ah... the magical heavenly haven known as the "Women's Locker Room".

On tired, non-workout days, I'd literally pack a lunch - like a grade school field trip - and a shower bag- drop the kiddos off at the playroom, and make a bee-line to the women's locker room.

Here I would enjoy a luxurious 2 hour spa day including:

~ Shower for one  (20-25 minute treatment) includes shampoo, conditioner, liquid soap on washcloth exfoliating and cleansing, underarm shave, leg shave (above the knee is extra), and towel dry.
~ Blowout (10-15 minute treatment) includes quick dry with low-power-motor dryer and one try-to-do-it-all hair product application.
~ Lunch (30 minutes) a delightful blend of last nights' dinner and children snacks deemed healthy but yummy enough to serve as a 'lunch' type food

So yes, some days the gym was about the physical well-being .. other days, about the mental.  Both equally important - some more enjoyable than others.  And the kiddos? Um, super happy!  Other children and non-parental figures stimulating their little minds... invoking discovery, independence and socialization.   Boom - like free pre-preschool!  I'd pick them up feeling like a new mommy ... ready to take on the rest of our day (yeah, probably Target - maybe Starbucks ... you know the drill) and all the while being extremely happy to pay that monthly gym membership - which for our family was so much MORE than just that!

PS: Be sure to follow my blog ... I'm back!  All kinds of fun stuff coming like FitBit Charge HR vs Apple Watch, why your butt gets fat when you're pregnant (and why it's a good thing) and how yoga pants changed everything. ;-)