Friday Shout Outs [7.31.15]

Hello and happy Friday! I’ll be honest, I’m glad this week has come and gone. I’ve been in quite a funk, and our AC going out yesterday was the icing on the cake. Except there was no cake. Cake would have made everything better.

Let’s stop talking about me, and get to the people who caught my eye this week!

shout-outs

JULIE

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I’m sure everyone who reads blogs knows Julie Fagan. She’s a Powerhouse Blogger, and I think she’s pretty cool. More importantly, I am SO excited to welcome Julie to the “new mom club”! She gave birth to her beautiful baby boy, Chase, on Wednesday morning and I am beyond thrilled for her. Julie, you and Ryan are going to be amazing parents!

CLARE

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Clare is a real-life friend of mine, but I’d been reading her blog long before we met for brunch and laughed our faces off. Clare is one of those people that I’m constantly impressed by, and this week was no different: she’s made her last big move before starting medical school this fall!

– CORY –

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Yep, Cory gets the unconventional shout out this week. Remember how I said I’ve been in a funk? Well, he’s the one who’s had to deal with me, and I can assure you, it’s been no easy task. I’m eternally grateful to be married to a person who knows me better than anyone, yet loves me anyway.

TGIF, friends! Who are you giving a shout out to this week? 

29 Questions I Ask Myself on a Daily Basis

1. How is is already morning?

2. Is it bedtime yet?

3. Can I wear these yoga pants again? *sniff*

4. Can I wear this bra again? *sniff*

5. How accurate is the sniff test?

6. Can he really be hungry again already?

7. Can I really be hungry again already?

8. Where can I safely put this baby so I can pee by myself?

9. Why won’t he nap?

10. Did he just say mama? 

11. Do I look acceptable enough to venture out in public?

12. How long should I let him cry before I pick him up? (Answer: Approximately 17 seconds.)

13. Can you over-nurse a baby?

14. How much longer until Cory gets home? (Answer: eternity.)

15. How do women find fun “Mommy + Me” groups?

16. Am I a terrible mom?

17. Does Google know the answer to _____? (Answer: Don’t ever consult Google.)

18. Could he be any cuter?

19. Where’s Penny?

20. Will I be the first new mother to literally grow into her couch?

21. Would it be bad to have a glass of wine right now?

22. Did I almost just end that work call with “I love you”? (Does this happen to anyone else?!)

23. How have more people not posted to Instagram and Facebook since I last checked?

24. Do babies have a sixth sense to cry at the exact moment a mother sits down to do something for herself?

25. What would I pay someone to come over for an hour so I could take a nap?

26. How does my living room get this messy this fast?

27. Am I do this wrong?

28. Who would have ever thought that I’d actually enjoy being a stay/work-at-home-mom? (Answer: not me.)

29. Is it too early for lunch?

An Apology to Every Woman Who Became a Mother Before Me

baby fingers

Dear Every Single Woman Who Became a Mother Before Me,

Before I became a mother, I knew exactly what you were doing wrong. I made mental notes of your exhausted demeanor, your shapeless jeans, and your mini van, because I knew you were everything I would never become.

I figured you had ‘let yourself go,’ not only physically, but personally; you know, the woman whose identity is “Mom.” I knew that when became a mother, I’d work hard to get my body back, and I certainly wouldn’t let motherhood consume me. I was my own person, damn it, and nothing could ever change that.

While out to dinner with my husband, I enjoyed stimulating conversation, and I’d judge the parents next to us who stuck an iPad in front of their toddler. What’s happened to family dinners? I’d ask my husband, as I leisurely ate my meal with both hands. We’ll never have technology at our dinner table, I’d say, as I posted a picture of my meal to Instagram.

I owe every mother an apology, because I had no idea what it meant to be you. I had no idea what it felt like to be up all night with a sick baby, or how it felt to have that one pair of pants that actually buttoned, even if they did sag and hug in all the wrong places. And, I admit, I had no idea how damn convenient a mini van could actually be.

I could not possibly fathom how you lose yourself, and life as you knew it, the day your first child is born; but in the most beautiful, selfless way imaginable. And that of course you identify as Mom, because it’s the most powerful role you’ll ever earn.

I could not comprehend how your child-rearing decisions were absolutely none of my fucking business. That if whatever is working for you, works for you, then you just need to keep on keepin’ on.

Lastly, I didn’t know what it was like to not care what someone like me thought, because you were far too consumed with being your own worst critic.

So, for what it’s worth, I know better now. And I think you’re doing a bang up job. With everything. All of it.

 

 

Twined Review


Hey, friends! I’m popping in real quick to tell you about a new website I’ve had the opportunity to work with over the last few weeks. Twined is a website geared towards people like me who do a ton of research before purchasing just about anything/love saving money.

twined.com

What You Need to Know

1. Twined ‘Tastemakers’ are the people behind the reviews that you read. They’re trusted and vetted by Twined as not only experts, but as REAL PEOPLE.

2. The Tastemakers identify and write about their favorite products, YOU “vote” on the products you’re interested in, and then Twined negotiates discounts with the vendor. Hello, savings. 

3. Once Twined negotiates a discount with the manufacturer, it’s all about the group; the more people who buy the item, the lower the price gets!

What I love about Twined is that the Tastemakers only review products they’ve purchased on their own, so you can be guaranteed that the reviews are absolutely genuine. It’s honest people giving honest feedback about products they love. Simple as that.

For a better idea, you can head on over to Twined to check out my profile and the two items I’ve reviewed so far:

the Britax B-Agile Stroller 

britax b agile stroller

and the Chicco KeyFit 30 carseat

chicco keyfit30 carseat

Both of these items were on my baby registry, and I use them every.single.day. So go by and check out the site, and be sure to click on “vote for discount” on items you like so you can get yo’self some discounts!

Happy savings!

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

10 Things That are Way Easier Now That I’m a Mom

1. Procrastinating. I’ll be better about this one. Tomorrow.

2. Mastering the “Grunge” look. Slick hair, don’t care.

3. The 5K to Couch program. Or, wait…

4. Pulling an all nighter. Because who needs sleep? (I do. I need sleep.)

5. Knowing my bra size. LOL JK.

6. Speaking my mind. Please don’t come visit me and my baby without bringing me food. kthanksbyeeee.

7. “Expressing” my emotions. I can cry, raise my voice, and belly-laugh…in one conversation.

8. Binge watching. Breastfeeding = Netflix

9.  Getting tipsy. Coming back from taking approximately a year off from alcohol? One glass of wine will have you feeling miiiiighty fine. And tired. Very tired.

10. Leaving the house. LOL JK again

Can I Remember My Pre-Baby Life?

mandy

photo cred

It was a simple remark. It shouldn’t have thrown me into a random rage. But, Goddamn it, I’m exhausted and I take everything personally.

I was cooing over Jack with a friend. I had a spit up rag over my shoulder and I was wearing the only pair of yoga pants that fit without giving me a muffin top. She tickled his feet and without even looking up at me, she breathed, can you even remember your life without him? 

I looked at her as if she’d slapped me across the face, rubbed salt in my open c-section wound, and kicked me while I down.

Can I remember my life without him? 

Can I remember not being so exhausted that it physically hurt, eating a meal with two hands, and not crying over a stupid Dove commercial?

Can I remember being able to go out with my girlfriends on a whim, eat dinner at fancy restaurants, and get drunk without having to be responsible for a tiny, helpless human?

Can I remember feeling pretty and skinny and wearing pants without elastic waistbands?

Can I remember what it’s like to feel as though my heart is not living and breathing outside of my own body?

Can I remember what it’s like to not have my days revolve around diapers, a crock of shit attempt at “sleep training,” and my milk machine boobs?

Can I remember what it’s like being married without a child, having energy for any sort of intimacy, and not understanding why our friends with kids couldn’t just get a sitter and come out with us?

I look at my friend, then back down at my smiling, happy, healthy baby. My heart explodes into a million tiny pieces and my brain does this weird Men In Black thing where I don’t remember anything that happened before this moment, yet everything makes sense.

No, not really, I say.

And in a weird way, it’s the truth.

 

Friday Shout Outs

Thank God it’s Friday, folks. Literally. Do you guys have fun weekend plans? It’s our first weekend in a while where we don’t have any scheduled plans, and I’m actually really looking forward to it.

One thing before I get into the Shout Outs: I was thinking of making this a link up next week. Would any of my blogger friends be interested? I literally (literally) have no idea how to set up a link up, but I think I can figure it out by next Friday. Let me know what you think!

shout outs

Allee

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Allee is my new best friend. She may not know that, but it’s true. She reached out to me earlier this week to talk shop, and this resulted in us sending a few emails back and forth (and me blog stalking the shit out of her.) She’s the kind of person whose style of writing, both on her blog and in her emails, makes me laugh out loud. It seems silly, but connecting with her was an unexpected bright spot in my week!

Caroline

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The phrase, it’s a small world, really applies to how I’ve come to know Caroline. It started with our connection over our shared loved of Tim Riggings. She’s also a fellow Longwood alum (who I did not know in college), who happens to serve on the alumni board with Cory. I read Caroline’s blog and connected with her on social media having no idea she knew Cory. Anyway! This shout out is to this pretty girl for taking time out of her Thursday to meet up with me for some lunchtime Sweet Frog. I’m happy to report that Caroline is as sweet and funny ~*IRL*~ as she is on her blog. I love when that happens. 

Keenan

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Keenan, aka Dear Queenan, is one funny lady. I found her blog after reading her article on Scary Mommy, and after I saw her tagline, drinking, judging, and just being fabulous, I was confident I’d just come across my spirit animal. Anyone who writes about drinking and momming has my vote. You go, girl. You go.

DuClaw Review

So, if you’ve been around these parts for a while, you may remember me saying that one thing you’d never see is me with a beer. 

I’m just not a beer person; which is exactly what I told Claire when she contacted me on behalf of DuClawI’m not a beer person, but I am an alcohol person, so if she thought it would be worth me trying out her beer and possibly converting – I’d give it a try.

both

I was intrigued by these two DuClaw flavors, blueberry citrus wheat and grapefruit zested blonde. If anything, I enjoy alcohol that tastes fruity. That means it’s practically healthy, which means I can totally drink and eat dessert and not feel bad about it.

Judging solely on looks, I went with Morgazm first.

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If I’m being honest, I was drawn to the girly, colorful label. It made the beer seem less intimidating to me, the non-beer-drinker. I know that’s making all your beer gurus cringe, but it’s the truth. This was what I’ll call my “appetizer beer” because I drank it while eating cheese and crackers. Surprisingly, it went down pretty well. No ugly beer face here when I took the first swig (which is shocking.) I couldn’t necessarily taste the grapefruit flavor, but it was zesty!

Next up was Funk, which I was sure I wasn’t going to like.

funk

To my surprise, I actually like this one better than Morgazm. I could really taste the blueberry flavor, and it wasn’t nearly as heavy as I expected it to be. This one also went down smoothly, which I certainly did not expect Again, I was basing all my judgements on the look of the label. Professional, I know. I drank this beer with this summer salad (OMG SO GOOD) and it actually paired quite well. Pairing it with a salad really made the fruit flavor pop.

Have I converted to a beer drinker? I don’t think so. But I do think that DuClaw absolutely opened the door of possibility. Both of these beers were actually good. For me, the biggest thing about beer is the drinkability – does it make me gag, or does it go down smoothly? For me, both Morgazam and Funk hit the nail on the head. This was a super fun opportunity for me because it allowed me to step outside the box!

These product were provided to me by DuClaw Brewing Company. All thoughts and opinions are my own. I greatly appreciate your support as I continue to work with brands and sponsors! 

Another Reason to Hate Facebook

I want to know who the hell gets paid the big bucks at Facebook to compose the pop up notifications, because when I logged on yesterday and this gem was ready and waiting for me, I laughed/cried.

Facebook

Show people who I really am now? Choose a recent photo so people know they’re getting in touch with the right Colleen?

Because I recently had a baby, I’m probably most definitely a little self-conscious about my softer belly and c-section scar and completely new body shape (to name a few things) but this notification made me think what DO I look like now?!

Do I look unrecognizable now that I’m a mother?! Surely, I’m covered in more spit up than last year. I absolutely wear yoga pants more often. I certainly look more tired. I could be described as “top heavy.”

For God’s sake, Facebook, kick a girl while she’s down.

Just to clarify, this picture was taken at a friend’s wedding last June, about a month before I got pregnant.

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This picture was taken yesterday morning, about three and a half months after having a baby.

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So, for anyone who might be confused, IT’S ME! COLLEEN!

STFU

A to Z Survey VIDEO

I’ve seen this going around the good ol’ blog world for a few weeks, but wanted to make it a video instead. If you enjoy that kind of thing, great! If not, we’ll be back to regularly scheduled posts tomorrow.

 

Tell me: Where’s your hometown?