Sunday, April 26, 2015

1/52

 “A portrait of my children, once a week, every week, in 2015.” 

Friday, April 24, 2015

The Sisterhood of Motherhood.

Recently my good longtime blogging friend Heidi started a Facebook group called Mamas + Coffee and recently the topic of mom on mom judgement was brought up. We've all experienced it, we've all caught ourselves doing it, and we all know better! So today I thought I would talk about the importance of sisterhood in the mommy community and how "mommy shaming" has got to end. Now!
I've heard it all. In the mommy community I've had so much going against me, so much to be judged for. I've been a teen mom, a working mom, a stay-at-home mom, a homeschooling mom, a crunchy granola mom. My journey has always been an unconventional one. I've heard the whispers. I've felt the glares sent my way by women who decided I was less than or wrong because of the path I have chosen to walk. I have felt defeated. I have felt guilt. I have questioned my choices time and time again.
It's easy to get swallowed up in the negativity that the mommy world can create. It's easy to look at a mother and tear her down because you aren't feeling 100%. It's easy to tell a mother she's wrong because you don't personally agree with her choices. It's easy to be envious, it's easy to be catty, it's easy to throw sticks and stones. Sometimes we don't do it intentionally, it just happens because our society conditions us to praise perfections and tear down flaws. Sometimes the need to feel accepted leaves us hanging another mom out to dry. Sometimes we are just wrapped up in our own messes and we can't see that mother in need.
We've all been there. The house doesn't get clean, the kids are a mess, you've skipped shampooing for the third day, you're on your last thread of sanity, and you feel so defeated. Those are days we need just a little bit of forgiveness, a little slack to keep us going. Those are the moments when we realize how wrong taking the easy road is. We realize how much we need the encouragement, support, and love from other moms. We realize we need each other.
When I think about motherhood, I think about all of the women who have held a space for me, who have shown me true compassion, who have taught me patience. If it were not for those women I would not have the skills to be a mother myself. I needed their knowledge, I needed their honesty, I needed their guidance. These women came in all forms; teachers, family members, friends. They painted beautiful pictures of all the different paths I could take on my journey through motherhood. They helped me decide what kind of mom I wanted to be and for that I'll be forever grateful. When one mother assaulted me ten more would come to my rescue and assure me that I was doing the best I could. You see ladies, we all need each other. We need the support and understanding that only a mother can give. We need all of the wisdom from the mothers who came before us. It takes a village, it really does. Motherhood is the ultimate sisterhood; we are all bonded by our love of our children and the sacredness of our role in the family. No matter the path we take at the end of the day what matters is the end result. Are our children loved and well cared for? If you're answer is yes then congratulations, you're doing alright!
When I see that mom, the one who is pushing her shopping cart through the grocery store, a baby screaming, her hair and clothes a mess, I don't look at her and see a mother who is less than. I see myself on those days where I'm falling apart. I see a sister in need and I send her all the positive energy and love that I can. I tell her she's not alone. I hold a space for her.
As sisters we must walk along side one another, no matter what path we take. We shouldn't try to "fix" each other, we should celebrate our differences and give unwavering support no matter what our personal preferences may be. We must learn that family, parenthood, and motherhood are not "one size fits all" and that just because it works for you doesn't mean that it's "right". We must recognize the importance of respect and empathy. We've got to be kinder to each other, and ourselves. We've got to stop tearing each other apart.
The next time you see her, that frazzled mom in need of encouragement, be the one who steps up and tells her it's going to be okay. Give her a hug, buy her a coffee, cheer her on, let her know that she is not alone. The next time you see her, don't take the easy road.
And the next time you are her just remember,
Sister, it's going to be okay.

"There is no way to be a perfect mother, and a million ways to be a good one."
-Jill Churchill

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

Happy Earth Day!

Happy Earth Day everyone! This week the kids and I have been celebrating Mother Nature and all of her wonder. We've spent time outside, tended to our growing sprouts, talked about pollution and recycling, and started work on our Earth Day projects. This year we decided to spoil our birds with homemade and completely biodegradable bird treats and two new, very fancy homes for them to enjoy! The little ones picked out their houses and spent so much time painting them and decorating them. The birds in our yard have the most colorful houses around, that's for sure! The treats we made are so easy and I had everything on hand! If you want to make your little birds a super sweet treat you can follow this recipe! We decided to use clementines instead of large oranges so the kids could work with more ease. I used an all natural hemp to string them up and then we headed outside to adorn our little tree. 
Now we are just waiting for birds! The kids have been checking out the windows, they are so excited about their little Earth Day projects! How are you celebrating Earth Day today? Leave us a comment and let us know!

 "When we feel that we’re fragile, not stable or solid, we can come back to ourselves and take refuge in the Earth. With each step we can feel her solidity beneath our feet. When we’re truly in touch with the Earth, we can feel her supportive embrace and her stability. We use all our body and our mind to go back to the Earth and surrender ourselves to her. With each breath we release all our agitation, our fragility, and our suffering. Just being aware of her benevolent presence can already bring relief.
On the verge of the Buddha’s enlightenment, he touched the Earth with his hand and asked her to bear witness to his awakening. Flowers sprang up in celebration at the very place where his hand touched the ground. At that moment, the Buddha’s mind became so free and so clear that he saw millions of flowers everywhere smiling at him.
We can be like the Buddha, and in difficult moments touch the Earth as our witness. We can take refuge in the Earth as our original mother. We can say, “I touch the pure and refreshing Earth.” Whatever nationality or culture we belong to, whatever religion we follow, whether we’re Buddhists, Christians, Muslims, Jews, or atheists, we can all see that Mother Earth is a great bodhisattva. When we see her in this way, with all her many virtues, we will walk more gently on her and treat her and all her children more gently. We will want to protect her and not harm her or any of the myriad forms of life she has given birth to. We will stop wreaking destruction and violence on Mother Earth. We will resolve the question of what we mistakenly call “the environmental problem.” The Earth is not just the environment. The Earth is us. Everything depends on whether we have this insight or not."
-Excerpt from Love Letter to the Earth by Thich Nhat Hanh

Friday, April 17, 2015

Cooking With The Littles // An Adventure In Lemonade.

Marli saw this cute little lemon shirt at Target and instantly fell in love with it. Every time we would walk by it she would say "I want to get that shirt and then make lemonade when I wear it, wouldn't that be awesome mom?".
To make a long story short, I ended up grabbing the shirt and all the ingredients to make lemonade from scratch when I was out and surprised Marli. She was so excited and couldn't wait to give it a go. I stayed totally hands off for this "Cooking With The Littles" and let Marli take over except for slicing with the "super sharp knife". Hunter was a wonderful assistant and took his assigned task of stirring quite seriously. We ended up with very delicious lemonade and two satisfied kiddos. Now Marli says shes ready for a lemonade stand, oh boy!

Wednesday, April 15, 2015

Date Night // The Grove.

Jared's birthday is right around the corner so last night we went out to celebrate. We wouldn't usually plan a Tuesday night date but one of Jared's favorite bands were playing a small club in the city and we couldn't miss it. We drove into St. Louis a little early because this club in newer and in a fun "up and coming" district full of old school tattoo parlors and funky eateries called The Grove, I wanted to explore. We had such a good time stopping in record stores and checking out all of the murals painted on bars and businesses. Then it was show time! This was our sixth time seeing Between The Buried And Me and they were fabulous. I'm not really a "metal fan" like my husband but I really love BTBAM and never mind being dragged along to their shows with the guys. All in all I think we had a wonderful time, date night success.
If you're ever in St. Louis and looking for a fun area to explore make sure you head down to The Grove. Support our local businesses and help downtown flourish! 
(also we are getting our first IKEA in The Grove, woohooo!)

What do you like to do on date night? We are always looking for ideas!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Living Essentially // Q&A



You've heard me talk about them on the blog and have seen them all over my Instagram feed. Essential Oils. There are social media communities built around them, holistic moms, doulas, yoga fanatics, and natural living enthusiasts all swear by their magical qualities. They are the must have in your bag, medicine cabinet, and kitchen drawer. 
Like all things, I was skeptical before trying essential oils. Was this a fad? Some trendy money spending gimmick that will quickly pass? What are these oils?! I was so curious! Then, two years ago I was looking to change things up. I was sick of cleaners, personal care products, and air fresheners that were full of chemicals I couldn't pronounce and that made me feel nervous to use around my little ones. I wanted all natural products that I could trust. One of my friends game me a little sample of an oil called Thieves and that is where my oily journey began! Just a mom lookin' out for her family and their wellness.💁🏼Thieves was the oil that got me hooked on what oils could do for my family and made me dive deeper into my Young Living Premium Starter Kit. I ditched all my chemical cleaners and started relying on this little bottle to clean my kitchen...and my bathrooms...and my produce...and our dishes, hands, teeth... I think you get the picture. YES, IT IS THAT GOOD! (And smells amazing!!!) After that, each oil in the kit found its place in our home and in our daily routines. The Premium Starter Kit is the easiest way to start using oils right away and the value is so awesome, looking back I wish I would have signed up sooner!
Scents affect our mood everyday! The smell of lavender has a calming effect and lemon is a fresh and energizing smell. Aromatherapy is all around us and its therapeutic uses are endless, this is why I knew I would benefit from essential oils in my everyday life. Young Living has allowed me to kick chemicals to the curb and support our families health and wellness naturally.
I get a lot of questions from friends, family, and internet buddies about essential oils, how to use them, and how to get started with Young Living all the time so I decided to do a little Q&A in order to answer questions and help anyone who might be looking for a point in the right direction!

WHAT ARE ESSENTIAL OILS?
Essential oils are the oils extracted from plants that contain the plant's natural aromatic essence. They are created usually by distilling the plant, often by steam. These essential oils have been used through out history for cosmetic and health purposes.

CAN'T I JUST BUY ANY BRAND OF OILS?
Yes, you can. But not all essential oils are created equally! They aren't regulated which means that anyone can sell pretty much anything and label it essential oil. Some companies dilute their oils, some don't even use plant based materials at all. You have to really do research on companies and the process their essential oils go though. The whole point of using oils is for their all natural properties. I want the most pure plant essence when I purchase oils, that's why I ended up buying through Young Living! Their Seed to Seal process ensures that their oils are the best quality and ethically sourced so you can trust that your family is safe!

WHY SHOULD I CHOOSE YOUNG LIVING OILS?
When I first started using essential oils I collected them one at a time as I discovered each of their uses and how I could incorporate them into my families life. This left me spending high dollar for oils that were diluted or impure. With Young Living oils you are getting the most pure essential oils for a great price. They source out the purest farms or farm themselves, they weed by hand, they control pest with their own oils, and they gently distill their oils without chemicals. They also heavily test their oils to meet therapeutic grade standards. Each bottle is filled with the plant’s “living energy” and in turn their essential oils are 100% therapeutic grade, effective, and safe. When you sign up with Young Living through me you are joining a team to help you on your oil journey and provide you with the best resources and information so you can start using your oils every single day! I will walk beside you and support you in your wellness journey, Looking into the business side of things? I want to help you succeed and reach your goals.
HOW CAN I USE ESSENTIAL OILS IN MY EVERYDAY LIFE?
When you start your oil journey it can be an overwhelming process. What do I use these oils for? How do I get the most out of these little bottles of goodness? There are so many ways to easily and seamlessly make essential oils a part of your everyday routine. The easiest way is to diffuse your favorite scent with a Young Living diffuser. I diffuse oils to uplift spirits, provide focus, or help cranky little ones calm down for a good night sleep. You can also utilize accessories like roller balls for oil mixtures that you can apply to help with sinus issues, headaches, scratches and “boo boos”, aches and pains, mood lifting, and more. They are also wonderful to include in homemade cleaning products, beauty products, and some are even wonderful to use in your food or to flavor water. Think of them as natural helpers! When you sign up with me and join my oily family you will be provided with all the resources you need to utilize every single oil in your Young Living Premium Starter Kit. You will not feel overwhelmed once we're done with you...you'll be wondering why you ever thought oilin' was too complicated!

HOW DO I GET STARTED WITH YOUNG LIVING?
The most cost effective way to start your Young Living journey is to sign up as a distributor and purchase a YL premium starter kit with diffuser. By becoming a distributor you are not obligated to make sales or meet a monthly quota but it does give you a discounted wholesale price on all oils and kits which means you're saving money with no commitment necessary! If you do want to share your love for essential oils and earn a little extra cash you can share these oils with your friends and family to earn commission or participate in promotions for free oils as a wholesale distributor, totally up to you! The PSK has everything you need to start your oil journey for an incredible price!

WHAT'S INCLUDED IN MY PREMIUM STARTER KIT?
With your starter kit you’ll receive everything you need to start your oils journey. It includes a YL booklet, a user guide, an in home diffuser, distributor resource guide for those of you who want to turn your passion for oils into a business, AromaGlide Roller,  two Lavender sample packets, two Peppermint sample packets, two Peace and Calming sample packets, two Lemon sample packets, two Thieves sample packets, two NingXia Red 2oz. samples, a product guide with price list, and the Everyday Oils Collection.


HERE’S HOW TO SIGN UP!
I recommend purchasing the Premium Starter Kit with diffuser to start off. It is by far the biggest bang for your buck and you can actually start using your oils the day you receive it. To get started follow these simple steps:


  1. Select “Sign Up As:Young Living Wholesale Member”
  2. Locate the Enroller ID and Sponsor ID boxes and enter my ID “2558714”
  3. Fill in your name, billing information, shipping information, and your SSN for tax purposes. (This will only be used if you make over $600 a year selling young living products)
  4. Create a password and PIN number which you will use to log into your account and order more oils.
  5. Select your enrollment order. This is where you specify which starter kit you would like to order. You must order one of the kits listed to become a wholesale member.
  6. Set up your optional Essential Rewards Program. Buying one of the ER kits is not a requirement as a wholesale member. This rewards program helps you earn money back to help pay for your oils. If you are not interested you can select “No thank you, I plan on enrolling in the Essential Rewards Program later.”
  7. Agree to the terms and conditions.
  8. Confirm your order. Do not skip this step or your order will not process!


YOU ARE NOW ON YOUR WAY TO ESSENTIAL LIVING!

Need help signing up or want more information, samples, or just want to chat about oils and how they can change your life? Send me an email mommabeeeoils@gmail.com or find me on Instagram @mommabeeeoils!
I would love to help you get started on your oil journey!

You have your oils, now what? I'll be blogging about different ways I use essential oils in this new series so stay tuned for a lot more information, tips, tricks, and more. 



The statements made here have not been evaluated by the FDA. All suggestions and products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease. Anyone suffering from disease or injury should consult a physician. If you are currently taking a medication please do not stop taking it. 

I do not take place of your licensed health care professional. If you are on a medication please discuss the use of oils with those medications before use. 

Monday, April 13, 2015

Marli's Room Makeover!

This post has been a long time coming. Marli's room was one of the main reasons that we bought our house. It has built in bookshelves and a window seat that spans an entire wall, such a great focal point for a room. I envisioned Marli growing up in there from the moment we walked in. It was such a dream. The room was painted a rusty orange, I knew immediately that it had to go. I'm not a fan of very dark or super rich colors in bedrooms, especially children's rooms. When it came time to paint the room I had a few colors in mind but ultimately I wanted to leave the decision up to Marli, it was her room after all. I showed her a few coral colors peachy pinks but she had something different in mind. She ended up choosing a really muddy reddish salmon color that I only ever describe as disgusting. I absolutely loathe the color and since the day we finished painting it I was NOT happy. But Marli had chosen the color and I was going to respect her choice. As parents we are supposed to let our children make their own mistakes so they can learn from them. This was one of those great lessons. For two years we lived with this color and several times Marli wanted to re-decorate but couldn't find any bedding that matched her crazy wall color. Everything clashed with it, it made her room look small and dark, it was an awful time. I know I sound so dramatic but nothing is more frustrating then a great room ruined by bad color choices. This room drove me nuts.
For Marli's sixth birthday she was finally ready, she wanted me to give her room a makeover as her gift. I was so happy and I immediately started collecting ideas for Marli to look at. I started a Pinterest board, which you can see here, and let her help in the process. We slowly started buying bedding and accessories and over the last couple of months put everything together. The last step was paint, this time Marli agreed that white was the way to go. Boy, did it make a difference! Her room feels so open and fresh now. It's everything I knew it could be. We have a few more little details to add, like a rug and a few pictures but all in all it's a great improvement.
We went with a sort of vintage whimsical theme. I've been collecting funky vintage dolls, barbie cases, and art her whole life and using it as decor. The flea market was my best friend for most of the redesign. We also got a lot of her stuff at Target. Her bedding, lamp, and storage are all pieces from Circo, and I found the fun floral garland by Threshold on clearance for $1.69! What a steal!
I am so happy that this project is basically done and now Marli has a cute little "big girl" room enjoy. She is so happy with how everything turned out and has been spending a lot of time in there playing and relaxing in her new space.
What do you think of her room transformation? Do you have a room in your house that you can't stand? I challenge you to tackle the project, it will make you feel so much better! Trust me!

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Weekly Wear // Mom-On-The-Go.


Being a stay-at-home mom can mean staying in yoga pants for days on end, at least in my house. SO when the weekend comes it's time to get out, break out the jeans, and dress up "mommy style" for errand running and family fun. The classic jeans and t-shirt combo is very much my uniform on the weekends, a lot of comfort and not a lot of fuss! Fun accessories always spruce up a basic outfit, I'm especially in love with druzy crystals, caramel colored leather, and this great bag from Nasty Gal (I've seen a few similar styles at Target lately). Huge bags are always a must for me, we are transitioning out of diaper bags and I always end up throwing wipes and other essentials into my purse. I also make sure that I throw my Stress Away and Joy Young Living essential oil roller balls into my bag for on the go use. Running errands can sometimes be stressful with two kids and those oils are perfect for times when we've been out all day, a nap has been skipped, and "so and so won't stop touching me!". Throw on some great sandals and a pair of sunglasses and you're ready to take on the weekend momma!

1. "World's Okayest Mom" Tee
2. Black skinny jeans
3. Strappy leather sandals
4. A.R. Trapp Sunglasses
5. "Dusty Roads" duffle/weekend bag
6. Druzy stud earrings
7. Kate Spade watch
8. Stress Away and Joy essential oil combo

Monday, April 6, 2015

Little Bits No.3


This Easter weekend was spent with friends and family, enjoying beautiful weather, and making our own natural plant based dye to decorate our freshly laid eggs with. So many laughs, cuddles, pieces of chocolate, and good times were had by all. Easter done right in my book.
I hope you all enjoyed a beautiful weekend. 

1. My little bunnies.
2. Preparing Easter baskets full of Annie's Fruit Snacks and giant sugar cookies.
3. Easter egg dye in the making.
4. These eggs were about to take the plunge.
5. I love how vibrant our natural dyes turned out!
6. The perfect Easter egg palette.