Momma of Dos: 2016

Thursday, December 15, 2016

::Celebrating the holidays with JOY!:: Guest Blogger, Coppelia

{Guest Blogger Coppelia of www.CoppeliaMarie.com

I started thinking about Christmas back in September. Ha! Seriously, there's a website that counts down 101 days to Christmas with ideas on how to get organized, plan ahead and make sure the crazy busy holiday time is less stressful and more merry and bright. The countdown starts in September and I love it!

You know how some people are adulting? I'm more into Christmasing.

And yes, singing loud for all to hear (which, we all know is the best way to bring Christmas cheer), happens daily in my car.

But here's the thing: finding joy during the holidays can be tough, especially if:

-Someone you love is sick, battling cancer, needing surgery, etc ...

This season, it was my mom. (And I'm thanking God that she's doing great! But we were all pretty worried about the whole thing.)


Finding joy during the holidays can also be rough if:

-Finances are tight and the kids need Christmas outfits for the reindeer romp, the holiday piano recital, gifts for the teachers and you need an ugly sweater for the office Christmas party. 

Or, maybe you can relate to this: 


-You know those moments when you go through the drive-through line at Starbucks and try to drown your sorrows in a peppermint mocha or gingerbread latte? You could be having a peppermint pity party. 

So, what can you do when you're experiencing a combination of all these things (and maybe some more that I didn't have on my list), and you are just not feeling joyful? 

You can still have JOY! 

Sometimes getting out of town for a while helps. We recently had a blast at SeaWorld's Christmas celebration. We even met Rudolph! 


But when you're home, maybe wishing you could go somewhere but the circumstances just don't allow (been there, done that), this might help:

There's a local radio station in Houston, KSBJ (I used to do the morning show there!) and they do something called "The JOY Pledge." Basically, when you're feeling the stress of the holidays for whatever reason, or when you have the Christmas blues, you stop for a moment & say the JOY pledge:
I choose joy
And when I keep my eyes on Jesus,I have joy!
 When I lose it, I will choose it.
 I choose joy! 

It might seem like those are just words, and maybe you're skeptical that "saying a pledge" won't do much to solve your holiday woes. But try it! 

Sometimes, a little change in attitude can go a long way. 

If we are focused on all the negative things that are happening, of course we're not gonna feel joyful! 

BUT, when we decide to think about what we're thankful for, when we make up our minds to choose joy, we often find that one of my favorite quotes, really is true:

"Feelings follow actions more often than actions follow feelings."

In other words, if you wait until you feel joyful… you might be waiting until the new year. But if you decide to act and make the decision to choose joy, you might be surprised that the feeling of joy will follow!

I'd love to hear from you in the comments! Share with me the things that work for you as you try to find joy in this season. 

Here's to more JOY than ever before!

Laughing (and being JOYful) thru life,

Coppelia



~Coppelia
Singer/Speaker/Blogger

**My new book is out now!**
"Whole: How One Book Can Transform Your Whole Life" 

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

::Holiday Blues From a Mom’s Perspective:: by Candy of Fullest Mom

:: Guest Blogger today for Mini-Holiday Series :: 



Holiday Blues From a Mom's Perspective
Christmas is, in a sense, a crazy time for moms. We have our usual lists of daily to-dos; but, December completely tops it with a few sparkling extras. There are gifts to mail, seasonal parties to plan, and let's not forget shopping for the kids. It goes without saying that moms are typically the ones in charge of bringing on the festivities and it can get pretty overwhelming. One thing leads to another, then you're hit with RGF (Resting Grinch Face). In fact when asked, 64% of people have the holiday blues. This post will explore how to deal with it from a mom's perspective.

First step is acknowledgment.

You're part of the #StrongMomsClub, right? Yep, me, too. I'm the type to think logically, keep it moving, and even do a few push-ups on the side. When you're faced with the holiday blues, especially when you're busy, it may be hard to acknowledge that you even have it. Additionally, you might just want to pretend it's not there so you can keep your schedule. Pushing it down, and bottling it up, will not do you any good.

If you sense any sentimental or compulsive feelings of being down, or stressed, you need to face it head on. Pause and ask yourself if you would feel this way if it wasn't Christmas time. Symptoms of holiday blues include fatigue, tension, loneliness, and senses of loss. This is different than true clinical depression because the occurrences are temporary and only associated at the onset of the holidays. Once you understand this you can move on to the next step.

Talk about it.

Talking, or communication rather, is the best thing for a mom's well being. Some of us do not work outside of the home and it can get pretty isolating. Additionally, we can get into the false mindset of thinking that no one really wants to hear about our day. There's messiness, slobber, and mundane house chores. Who really wants to hear me complain about that? The truth, your loved ones do.

So, talk about your holiday blues. Get it out. That may be all that you need to make it past the season. Tell your spouse, or close loved ones, that you could use a little help. They will be more than happy to listen.

How to avoid holiday blues in the first place.

Here's a simplified list of how to avoid holiday blues in the first place.

1.    Aside from a few parties here and there, stick to normal routines as much as possible.
2.    Get enough rest. Please do not stay up to 2 am trimming the Christmas tree, or wrapping presents.
3.    Make sure to eat and drink in moderation. Bingeing on holiday ham when you're normally a salad goddess will completely throw anyone out of wack.
4.    Keep things simple and family focused.
5.    Lastly, set reasonable expectations for the month of December. You know you want to do gift shopping, bake cookies for Santa, and all that jazz. Just rationally plan only what you can handle.

Whatever your reasons for celebrating, I hope you find some joy. The holiday blues can be tough to handle from a mom's perspective. Use our tips of acknowledging, communicating, and furthermore avoiding, Christmas depression to turn things merry again.

Sincerely,
Fullest Mom



Guest Blogger Bio 

::Fullest Mom is owned by Candace Ann, wife and mom of 3. Her fundamentals are grace, laughter, and perseverance. She thrives off of coffee and hazelnut syrup. 

Her social media links are as follows:






Tuesday, December 13, 2016

::Survive the Holidays by Setting Boundaries & Releasing Expectations:: by Guest Blogger Eliza Boquin MA, LMFTA-Relationship Therapist

::GUEST BLOG POST- Survive the Holidays by Setting Boundaries & Releasing Expectations::


It’s the most wonderful time of the year...or is it?  For some, the holidays are the highlight of the year.  They look forward to the decorations, traditions, and family get-togethers.  For others, the holidays can trigger painful memories and serve as a source of anxiety and stress. But there’s hope and I’m going to share (2) simple ways you can survive and, hopefully, enjoy the holidays.

1.   Set Boundaries:  Setting boundaries is a term that therapists LOVE to use.  Essentially, boundary setting communicates to others what is okay and what is not okay with you.  In addition to physical boundaries, we can also set emotional and relationship boundaries. 

During the holidays, many couples struggle with how to balance the demands of extended family.  Each partner may feel pulled by their family/friends to partake and celebrate the holidays by their family’s traditions.  This outside stress often results in each partner taking their frustration out on each other.  Here’s the good news! If you set boundaries ahead of time you can avoid a lot of pain & frustration.

How To:  Discuss with your partner how the both of you want to celebrate the holidays.  This may mean setting new traditions.  Decide what works for your relationship.  Be as specific as possible.  What time will you allot for visiting one another’s family/friends?  What time will you reserve for your new traditions?

Communicate to one another what is most important to you – your must haves as well as what you’re flexible on.  It’s important to be as eager to meet your partner’s requests as you are for them to meet yours.

Once you’ve established your limits and rules refer back to them anytime a family member or friend challenges you.  For example, if your sister insists on having dinner for New Year’s Eve at her house because that’s what you’ve done for the past 15 years, but you really want to celebrate New Year’s Eve this year alone with your beloved then be ready to communicate that to your sister.  Note: It’s most important that the person who enforces the boundaries/limits be the one who has the most history with the person challenging the boundaries.

Benefit: By establishing and agreeing to your boundaries as a couple there will be less confusion about how to respond to outside pressure.  If you’ve decided as a couple what you will commit to prioritizing one another’s wishes, then you can both rest assured that you are both working towards the same goal.

2.      Release Expectations: Having a plan and a wish list of ways to celebrate is GREAT.  There’s nothing wrong with having a vision of how you would like things to go.  However, if you forget to include flexibility as part of that vision you’re likely to suffer from great disappointment when if things don’t go exactly as planned.  I’m no psychic, but you can probably bet on something not going as planned.  Depending on how you manage disappointment, your reaction may hinder your ability to enjoy the festivities.  However, by allowing for the unexpected you increase your likelihood and ability to manage the stress of things going off script.

How To:  Sit down with your partner and make a list of activities that are important to both of you--activities such as driving around local neighborhoods to see how they decorate their homes with holiday lights or baking cookies. Then decide again which are most important and how you will be flexible about.  It’s great to have a vision, but if you’re ability to enjoy the holiday is contingent upon strict orchestrated ways that these activities will be performed then you may end up disappointed. 

Also remember, this is YOUR vision.  The rest of your family may not find these activities as exciting or joyful as you.  If your ability to enjoy the holiday relies upon OTHERS enjoying the activities you planned you may end up highly disappointed and resentful. Stay flexible!  For example, decide that you want to see the neighborhood lights, but be flexible on the day/time you see them versus, “We have to go see the holiday lights on Christmas Eve at 8 PM with everyone in their PJS and then stop afterwards to get hot cocoa from the coffee shop drive-through because THAT’S WHAT WE DO EVERY YEAR!” That attitude may not spark the holiday cheer you’re working towards.

Benefits: By implementing flexibility into your holidays, you will be better equipped to manage the anxiety that may arise if things don’t go exactly as planned or if someone isn’t as thrilled about your plans as you.  This will allow you to stay in the moment, be present, and perhaps even laugh at the chaos.  I know…wishful thinking.

Whatever you decide to do, remember that the stories and the value we assign to life is exactly that…the value WE assign to it.  So this holiday season, decide WHAT you will prioritize and what value you will assign to it.

Happy Holidays!

Eliza Boquin, MA, LMFTA
Relationship Therapist


Thursday, December 8, 2016

::Top 5 Unique Gifts for the Awesomely Fun Momma in your Life::

::Momma Disclosure:: This post is not a sponsored, but some of the items below have been gifted to me by some of the shops mentioned below. All opinions are true and my own. 


We all have those people in our lives who have everything and who just need a little extra swag this Christmas. I love being a fun and cool Momma. Sometimes I fail, majorly, but I still love being a Momma. I have loved receiving the items below and know that there has to be that one Momma in your life who would also love them! I love it when gifts are more about the true thought put into it than the cost. The gifts below are all great items to add to any area of your collections and are also not going to break the bank! 

::Unique Graphic Tees:: 

I am known to wear graphic tees, a lot. This year I was happy to work with a couple of awesome Texas shops like; Sew Bonita (Frida Shirt below) and Taco Creative (Jesus Loves Taco shirt below). There are so many other shops where I get my t-shirts including places like Liv Luv Shop (Caffeine t-shirt below) & Pick Your Plum. As well as more common stores like Target or Walmart.  As part of my shop review with Elena, of Sew Bonita, we did an interview! 

It was our first time doing this hope you like it (Content edited by 90 Seconds Media): 




::Workout Clothes:: 

I am an active Momma. I am not the skinniest, nor do I run 10 miles a day, but I workout and love workout clothes! This year I partnered with Dick's Sporting Goods and received a gift card to purchase the items I needed and wanted most. They also sent me a great new pair of workout tennis shoes, all which I love. My favorites are comfortable form fitting yoga pants and bright colors! Loved this whole outfit from Dick's. I usually end up looking a hot mess after my workouts but at least now I look cute! Hey! 



::Mugs:: 

So, I have a little secret, or maybe not so much, I love MUGS! I drink tea more than coffee and I rarely use my pretty mugs but I love collecting them! These are my top favorites that I have sitting on my desk, looking oh so pretty! I also use them to hold my pens or business cards. Multi-use! I have purchased them in different places. Some local shops and places like Francesca's for the Blogging Day mug. The Calavera mug my co-worker gifted to me, of course, it's my absolute favorite!



::Unique Colorful Clutch bags or Purses:: 

This year I also partnered with Original Wear Travels Abroad, the three bags below are from some of their Spring and Summer Collections. You can truly never have enough purses. They are so handy and when you have options it makes getting ready a little more fun, such a girl, sometimes! There are so many shops that have unique pieces that are sure to match something in your closet and can turn into a great conversation piece at your next outing! 



::Unique Jewelry Pieces::

Also from Original Wear are the slice of heaven and colorful cuffs seen in the far right corner. The leather cuff with the large metal piece is from another amazing Texas talent, who is from the RGV (If you know me, I am a Texas Valley girl, so much support local!! so much support local?) the artist's name is Mitch Darte. She recently partnered with two local artists and opened a shop called Mi Casa Hidalgo. Check it out!! One of my favorite partnerships this year was with JORD Watches, their wood watches are amazing, and as holiday gifts, I am sure you'd make the Momma in your life very happy! The other items above are from The Silver Loft (red heart necklace and silver bracelet)  and  Luca Love Bracelets  (Set of 4 bracelets which include the Tree of Life, Story of Jesus and Alejandra's arrow, a set I created). 


Wednesday, December 7, 2016

::Blogging 101 Workshop:: at Thinking Girls Boutique

About the blogging journey..... 

When I started blogging in 2008, as my own personal improvement project to simply practice my writing skills, I couldn't imagine what it would become. I have long since left my job at Harris County Elections as part of their communications and outreach department but Momma of Dos has become one of the best personal improvement projects ever. As the year continued, Barack Obama became president and my inspiration grew. 2009 came and I became pregnant with my first son. My pregnancy was not easy. I quickly found myself expressing my pains, feelings, cravings and everything in-between and discovered, "mommy bloggers". 

 {Picture Credit: All pictures taken by Chris Pozo of Lex Photography




Soon after I had my son I realized I had become severely depressed during my pregnancy, since the depression "went away" when my son was born, I left it alone. 10 months after my son was born, I found out I would be having a second baby. This time a girl. And, that's how Momma of Dos was born. A new onset of depression began and this time it lingered past the first year after her birth. I continued to share and the sense of community became my free therapy. 

In the Summer of 2012, I could no longer hold it together. I went to therapy and eventually had a panic attack in the fall of the same year. I landed in the hospital and was sent home to rest, I quit my job and decided I would refocus and take some time off. During this time I attended my first ever blogging conference, LATISM here in Houston. My blog would once more grow. In 2013 I returned to work full-time this time more relaxed and with more motivation to keep blogging. I have since been part of various campaigns local and nationwide as well as have been invited to several conferences both local and out of state, even made it to Washington DC last year! 

Blogging has never been my full-time job, as a Momma/Wife with a degree, I have chosen to work outside the home and pursue a career which would match my education efforts. I work in Corrosion and that's pretty much all I share on here about my real job. 

Blogging is a side-gig which has afforded me MANY experiences and at times extra income that is very much welcomed! 




Fast forward to 2016, when I decided to host Blogging 101 classes partnered with Thinking Girls Boutique as the venue. The rewards of sharing  my journey, my work, and how to create your own blog for various reasons have been immense. I have met so many people from all walks of life. Those who just want to share their story of motherhood, of life, or their experiences to those who  are looking to enhance their small business' advertising/promotion strategy and exposure.

I love what I do and growth and change have allowed me to pursue passions I really didn't know I had.... 





Tuesday, December 6, 2016

::Wine Styles Houston with Houston Latina Bloggers::

::Momma Disclosure:: This is a sponsored post. All content is my true and honest opinion.




Are you looking for a great place to host your next company event, meeting or just gather with friends? I had never been to a wine tasting so when we were invited to visit Wine Styles for one of our administrative meetings with Houston Latina Bloggers, I was excited!

As a Momma who works outside the home I know that many daily business interactions are conducted over lunch or dinner. Some time those meetings are very high profile, professional meetings and with very important clients, vendors or organization members who like to have a nice dinner and drink wine. One thing I like to be is well educated in dining etiquetes. You just never know when you will need it. Which is why the Wine Styles experience was very unique and relevant for many occasions.






We received a small tour of the location which is very business conducive if needed, and relaxing for entertainment purposes. I loved the learning aspects of it as well. Our hostess, Crystal Ybarra was great, and so knowledgeable. She not only taught us about the different wines and what foods they are paired with she also taught us of the different senses used when drinking wine. I felt very comfortable learning about the wines and what to look for when tasting and smelling them.






And, if wine is not your favorite drink, they also have events with craft and specialty beers, their next event is December 16th!

Visit their page for more:
Wine Styles Houston is located near 249 on Louetta Rd.  in Vintage Park; 

Friday, November 4, 2016

::Dick's Sporting Goods:: Houston Grand Opening + Giveaway



Dick's Sporting Goods opened their doors in Houston a couple of weeks ago, and this Momma was super excited! Number one, the store is huge with a big selection of great quality items. Number two, their women's workout department is amazing! And, number three... they have a great section with college apparel and more importantly they carry my alma matter the University of Houston. All of these are things that are highly important to me as a Momma who likes to work out and sport her school with true pride!



Dick's opened its doors with lots of great prizes, meet and greets and oh yeah.. taco trucks. The weekend of October 21st, hundreds, if not thousands, of people walked the aisles of Dick's. The store has an impressive layout and I love how everything is sectioned and easy to find. Not only was I excited to do a store walk-through and find new items for my workouts but also, I as a Momma whose kids play sports, knowing that Dick's gives back to youth sporting leagues is an amazing feeling!

Knowing that as parents, as a community we have that kind of support for our children is something that really makes me a Momma fan of the store!

If you have not visited the store and plan on going soon know that the store has 3 main sections; the Field and Stream which appeals to all those who are into the outdoors and hunting. The section after that is a general sporting goods section with a big variety of workout clothing including Carrie Underwoods brand Calia. The final section is Golf Galaxy, which of course caters to all of the avid golf players and then some. So, yes pace yourself and give yourself plenty of time to explore, if you don't have time there are plenty of attendants that can help guide you exactly to what you are looking for.




I visited the Katy location and got to catch Olympian and three-time gold medalist in US Beach Volleyball,  Kerri Walsh Jennings, as she said hello to her fans. One of the neat attractions was a giant Texas flag made of Igloo coolers! Which if you snapped a selfie with the wall then you could potentially walk away with one of the coolers on the last day of grand-opening weekend! Overall the experience at Dick's is a fun one and it's definitely your one stop shop for all things athletic.



Dick's opened 6 new stores here in the Houston area, if you are looking to locate one please see their store link ::HERE:: NOW, are you ready to win a gift card to kick off your shopping spree at the store nearest you? Enter below!


a Rafflecopter giveaway


Wednesday, September 21, 2016

::Being a Chingona has no age:: What I am teaching my daughter about being a badass + Sew Bonita review!

::Momma of Dos:: All opinions and statements are my own, items in posts have been provided by www.sewbonita.com in order to provide a review. 



Growing up my Momma instilled in us; hard work, a good education and oh yeah being a complete and total bad-ass or Chingona. I grew up knowing that this word was something to be reckoned with. And, it was used often in our home as a sarcastic view on something we had done that we thought we could get away with, like "ah, que chingona me saliste!" HA. HA. HA. My Momma was not one to hide her feelings, she has always been outspoken, strong and independent. We were not taught to be meek or hold back, we were taught to be ourselves, and others had to take it or leave it. Flash forward to 35 years of life, marriage, a college degree, a career and Dos littles. Chingona? 

For sure. 

I had a recent conversation with Elena of Sew Bonita, and it inspired today's post. Completely. We both had very similar views on being a Chingona and where we get our inspiration from...our Momma's. 

What and how am I teaching my 5-year-old to be a Chingona?!  Let's begin. 

1) ::She is Encouraged to be Herself:: I tell Camila that it's ok to be herself. She is a spunky, bright, and very happy child. She loves everyone and isn't scared to be herself. She talks. A lot. Like me. She has always been unique and specific in the way she dresses. She isn't scared to stand out. I encourage this. Because she should be allowed to be herself in a world filled with so many people trying to be like everyone else. She steps outside everyone's comfort zone, especially mine and I have learned to embrace it and let her be. 




2) ::She speaks her mind::  Camila, like many children, is outspoken and truthful. And, although those truths are sometimes embarrassing and painfully true, we encourage it. I want her to always tell others how she feels and what she thinks is right for her. To be bold and speak her mind the way everyone should! Sin pelos en la lengua, and oh trust me this little girl will speak her mind. No matter who you are or where she is. It's scary but freeing as a parent to know that she will one day be able to stand up for herself. 



3) ::No Fear:: I am teaching Camila, that although as a parent, there are many things that frighten me she shouldn't be scared. She should try new things, be adventurous and never give up!  I know there are fears in many aspects of life and sometimes you just have to follow those gut feelings and do those things that scare us. At the end of the day once we have conquered our fears we realize that the only thing standing in the way was our own self-doubt and not really fear.  



4) ::Be Fierce:: I am teaching Camila that it's OK to be girly and strong, and smart and hard working. Being these things come without an age requirement. She can be fierce and stand her ground even at 5 years old. Her presence is known and she makes it known. Like a true Chingona, she lets people know she has arrived, SO MOVE. I love that about her. She sometimes claims to be shy but I quickly encourage her to be herself to stand out from the crowd and lead.



5) ::To be a Leader, even if that means you stand alone:: One thing that always bothers Camila is not having "friends", early on I taught her that she can do anything she wants, even if that means doing it alone. She won't always have friends and with growth and doing great things comes a certain level of "loner status", and that's OK. Camila knows that even although some days its a hard concept for her to grasp. I have had her come home from school and say, "Mom, today I played on the swings all my self and it was fun!" or "Mom, -so&so- said they didn't want to be my friend and I said, good, I don't care." Because in this world she will have to learn that some times no company is better than bad company. 


And, still, Camila is only 5 years old, although she has a long way to go she is still a fun love-able little girl who is slowly forming her own attitude and perception of being a Chingona. I hope to constantly influence her in the right direction! 

About our "Frida is my Homegirl" t-shirt: Special thanks to Elena of Sew Bonita for providing this t-shirt and inspiring this post and mini-photo shoot! You can see all of her latest creations and collections HERE. Also, the t-shirt has very soft and comfortable material, it's in a small and the print is just uber inspiring. We love Frida Khalo in our house, she is the official Mexican Chingona and we are so proud to wear items with her on them and love what she stands for and represents. All of Elena's collections are very telling of being a Chingona in 2016 and I am proud to have collaborated with her.

Come back later in the week to get to know Elena and an exclusive on her connection to the late Selena

VISIT SEW BONITA, PURCHASE AND RECEIVE A 10% DISCOUNT WHEN YOU ENTER MOMMAOF2 AT CHECK OUT! 


Friday, September 16, 2016

::HallYu Cosmetics:: Intro to Korean Beauty Products



Most my post these days begin with "so I turned 35" and it's not because I want to bug anyone or remind people how old I am. The reason is, that 35 unlike 20, 25, & 30, 35 has felt diffident. A little more "laissez-faire" if you will but very focused. I just really want to change certain things about me and my habits, if you read my list of things I plan on doing more  , one  of those items was taking care of my skin.

I have always had several skin issues, numerous prescribed medications and small cosmetic procedures to eliminate acne. At 35 I want to be as natural as possible about my skin and it's healing if you will. I don't want to rely on medication and I know that the foods I eat and drinking more water both have high effects on this. I have started to drink more water, the food, though... let's get back to that later. 

And, just like most things a new collaboration opportunity came up just as I planned to create a new skin regime for myself. Enter HallYu Cosmetics into my life. I am very thankful because they have created a new awareness in me of the importance of regime and taking care of my skin. If you have never heard of them or visited their shop, I highly recommend you do both.

::Welcome to HallYu Cosmetics::
12168 Bellaire Blvd Suite 178, Houston, TX 77072 
(281) 741-7923
"HallYu (한류) is defined as wave of Korean influence spreading globally attributed to the popularity of Korean entertainment and music. Now Korean beauty products are entering the same recognition and popularity by offering amazing, fun products at remarkably reasonable price points. This is where HallYu Cosmetics enters the story........... We as a company strive to bring entire product lines and selectively chosen niche brands directly from South Korea."

The amount of energy and research that has gone into Korean cosmetics and beauty products is evident from the moment you walk in their shop. From the sleek and very clean environment of the shop to the extensive line of products. Everything is just perfect.  Now, for those fashion, beauty, and make-up expert who are obviously knowledgeable about this, none of it may come to you as a surprise. But, for myself, someone who knows, little to nothing about beauty this new world of skin care and products has opened up my eyes to all the wonderful options out there.

I am a full-time outside the home employee, a Momma of two very busy and active children, and a wife/homemaker. My schedule usually runs very tight from as early as 5:30 am (depending on what level of professional I have to look that day) until about midnight or later when my day finally comes to an end. I am also almost always on a very strict budget filled with house and car notes, bills, daycare payments, food and everything in-between. What does this mean? I have very little time and limited resources. When I told Anton, one of the partners at HallYu, that I needed a regimen that was fast, easy and inexpensive; he quickly put his thinking hat on and created one that was perfect for me.




He explained that Korean beauty involves very details steps and that for the most part, the cost has no limit. But, he was also very understanding of who I am and his knowledge catered to my needs as a busy Momma who still wants to look good and improve skin conditions at an inexpensive cost. Because we live in Texas and the weather has many effects on my skin, I also have that factor against me.  But, again the shop is created to cater to all needs, skin type and wallet size which is perfect!

Come back next week when I will explain and share what Anton recommended and how much I am loving it! 


In the mean time visit them online and social media: 

ENTER : mommaofdos 
at checkout for a 20% discount off your first purchase. 
Or in person at their shop:
12168 Bellaire Blvd Suite 178, Houston, TX 77072 
(281) 741-7923

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

::Five Self-Care Tips for Mothers Working Outside The Home:: by Guest Blogger Eliza Boquin MA, LMFTA-Relationship Therapist

Five Self-Care Tips for Mothers Working Outside The Home



Through the blur, I wondered if I was alone or if other parents felt the same way I did - that everything involving our children was painful in some way. The emotions, whether they were joy, sorrow, love or pride, were so deep and sharp that in the end they left you raw, exposed and yes, in pain. The human heart was not designed to beat outside the human body and yet, each child represented just that - a parent's heart bared, beating forever outside its chest.” 



Motherhood--the toughest job on the planet.  A job where you invest all of who you are—hopes, dreams, and fears.  The rewards often come in the form of smiling faces, neck hugs, and declarations of Mommy, you’re the best!” 

But it’s not always this warm and lovely. 

There are often days less lovely; days that leave us questioning whether we’re cut out for motherhood, where we wonder if we’re scarring our children for life (yes, even therapist moms question themselves).  Those are the days we’re certain that we not only have to save for our children’s college tuition, but also their future therapy.

Trust me.  We all have days like this.

Motherhood requires every molecule of your being and every fiber of your energy. Mothers know this.  Yet, mothers are notorious for neglecting their own needs.  They master the art of caretaking and nurturing…others, but often neglect caring for and nurturing themselves. 

Why is it so easy to neglect ourselves?

The challenge for many mothers is to fight against the idea that caring for ourselves is selfish.  The fear that cultivating a routine where our needs are at the forefront will make us “less motherly.” 

How would our lives change if we allowed mothers to live by the belief that caring for ourselves first and foremost is one of the most loving things we can do for the people we love?

What if prioritizing your needs makes you a better mother/wife/girlfriend/sister/woman/human? 

What if prioritizing yourself meant you had MORE to give?

I know.  Lovely idea, isn’t it?

You’re probably saying, “Yeah, right, Lady! How am I supposed to find “me time” between work, the kids schedules, my partner’s schedule?” 

Look, I’m not saying this is going to be easy.  You’re going to be pushing against an avalanche of conflicting emotions, disgruntled children, maybe even disgruntled partners as you begin to change the script up on everyone.  You’ll be fighting against judgmental people who will raise their eyebrows at you and leave you wondering if you truly are being selfish?

But there is a difference between self-care and being selfish.  And if you begin to practice the divine art of self-care then the people you want to care for most will be receiving the best version of you. 

So hang in there and let me guide you on how to establish these new habits.


Here are 5 Self-Care Tips for Mothers Working Outside The Home:

1.      Make Yourself a Priority.
If I were to ask you to make a list all the important people in your life, would I find your name on it?  The most common issue I hear from mothers is struggling with the guilt of doing something for themselves. 

Many mothers who work outside of the home feel particularly guilty spending their time away from work doing anything that is not family-related.  They rationalize that they spend (x) number of hours at the office and couldn’t possibly take more time away from their home life. Yet when we fail to care for our mind, body, spirit we quickly become depleted, irritable, and sometimes even ill. 

You are the cup that is used to fill everyone else’s.  What happens when you don’t refill your cup?  That’s right.  You’re left empty. 

The saying, “If Mama ain’t happy nobody’s happy,” rings true for a reason!      

2.      Identify Your Needs.
I often ask distressed clients, “What do you need?”  That question often causes people to take a long pause.  They have either never been asked or never taken the time to identify their needs. 

When our life consists of serving and meeting the needs of others it can be easy to lose touch with our needs/wants/desires which, ultimately, go unmet.  This can lead to stress, anxiety, depression, exhaustion.  You must be aware of your needs.

You can begin to cultivate deeper self-awareness by practicing yoga, meditation, mindfulness, or journaling, to name a few.  Check in with yourself regularly throughout the day.  Notice what you’re feeling in your body—is there tension anywhere? Do you notice any dull or aching sensations? Are you tired? Hungry? What do you need?
 
3.      Ask For What You Need.
Once you’ve identified what you need you must be willing to ASK for what you need.  Time and time again I hear mothers say that they want the people in their lives to “just help.”   With great frustration they will insist that those who love them “should know by now” what to do. 

Maybe.  Maybe not. 

People are often caught up in their own worlds and busy trying to figure out how to get their own needs met.  They may not even notice that you’re struggling especially if you’ve designed a life where you are the beloved Superwoman. 

You have to be able to ask for what you need—to get your own needs met.

Asking someone for help is not a sign of weakness nor is it an automatic indication that the relationship is flawed.  Your loved ones may not intuitively know what you need, but you may find them willing to help once they know what to do. 
      
4.      Set Aside 30 Minutes of “Me Time” Every Day. 
If you’ve made it this far down the list without cursing me or laughing hysterically at my suggestions, I applaud you! 

Stay with me on this next one. 

Yes, I encourage all mothers, including working mothers, to find 30 minutes every day dedicated solely and completely to refilling their cup!  Those 30 minutes can be used for cardio, bubble baths, reading a book for leisure—any activity that is dedicated to you

Don’t be discouraged if you can’t find 30 minutes.  Ask yourself, how much time CAN you gift yourself? 15 minutes? 5 minutes?

The goal is to get you into the habit of setting aside time for yourself on a regular basis.  If the guilt sets in remind yourself that you are making time to care for the mother of your children. 

5.      Make Time for For Your Tribe.
If we are going to get through this Motherhood Journey, then we will need a strong tribe there to support us and to witness our highs/lows.  Often finding the time, energy for people outside of our home can be an even greater challenge than finding time for a bubble bath.  Yet humans are wired for connection and having people that we can spend time with, who leave us feeling seen, heard, and restored is essential.

Find time at least once a month where you gather with your beloved tribe.  Go to dinner, have coffee, book a spa date and converse, share, cry, laugh—restore your soul!

This also models for your children the importance of nurturing relationships.

Listen, I get it.  This is tough.  I didn’t say it would be easy, I said it was essential to ensuring your health—mind, body, spirit.

The role of motherhood is sacred.  It is a gift.  It is a calling.  It will require you to invest 100% of you.  It will be the most vulnerable role you find yourself in and none of it will be easy.  This immense responsibility and the energy that it requires begs for you to care for yourself. 
Motherhood is a marathon, not a sprint. A race which you must be tending to yourself every step of the way.

Take good care of yourself, so that you will be able to care for those who need you most.


You can find Eliza online: