Confessions of a Stay-At-Home Mom

April 16, 2014

Celebrate Earth Day with HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® Savings and Tips from Johnson & Johnson #Moms4JNJConsumer #ad

This post is part of the HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® 2014 program by Johnson & Johnson Consumer Companies, Inc. and The Motherhood, who sent me a box of products and compensated me for my time. Opinions, experiences and photos shared here are all my own, and I hope you enjoy them.

After such a rough Winter, Spring us upon us. Despite the random SNOW we got here last night in southeastern PA, I am loving the Spring weather. I love that my kids can play outside in the sunshine, dig in the dirt (give me strength), ride bikes and we can take walks together as a family. There is something wonderfully delicious about being outside. We soak up more Vitamin D, we breath fresh air, and we get in tune with nature.

April is Earth Month, and we have the great opportunity to celebrate the very Earth we romp around on each day. To celebrate Earth Month, Johnson & Johnson has some great savings, tips and resources to share:

Earth-Friendly Tips

Head over to the Johnson and Johnson website for Earth-friendly tips this April. Did you know that there are a lot of things in your bathroom that you can recycle? Visit the Care to Recycle page to find some timely bathroom recycling solutions (I had no idea you can recycle caps!).  Learn how to make an edible garden as well!

People-Friendly Giving

Johnson & Johnson is giving back to the community with Donate a Photo. Share a photo through the Donate a Photo App, and Johnson & Johnson will donate $1 to one of the great causes you pick from this list. Causes like Water.Org, Operation Smile, Girl Up, Shot@Life and Keep America Beautiful are all great ways to give back not only to your community but the planet as well!

Wallet-Friendy Savings

This month, you can save $55 by visiting the Healthy Essentials website and signing up for HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® program coupons and offers. Here are some of this month's awesome deals:

• Save $1.00 on any JOHNSON'S® Baby Intense Moisture Cream

• Save $1.00 on any LUBRIDERM® product
(6oz or larger)

• Save $1.00 on any (1) CLEAN & CLEAR® product (excludes trial and travel sizes)

• Save $1.00 on any (1) NEUTROGENA® Sun product (exclude trial size)

• Save $1.00 on any (1) LISTERINE® SMART RINSE Anti-cavity Mouthwash, 500 ml

• Save $1.00 on any (1) REACH® Total Care Floss, or REACH® Gentle Gum Care Floss, or REACH® Dentotape® or REACH® Access® Flosser

• Save $2.00 on any (3) NEOSPORIN®, BAND-AID® Brand Adhesive bandages or  JOHNSON and JOHNSON RED CROSS® Brand products (excludes all trial and travel sizes, First Aid Kits, 10 ct Band-Aid Brand Adhesive Bandages, and On-the-Go First Aid Kits. Must buy (2) different brand products to qualify for this offer along with a third product)

Join the Conversation

Want to be part of the conversation? Join me, The Motherhood, Johnsons and Johnson as well as some other fabulous bloggers TOMORROW at 1pm for a HEALTHY ESSENTIALS® Twitter party all about shareable moments with friends and family - anywhere from online to in the store to your own medicine cabinet. You can use the #Moms4JNJConsumer hashtag to follow along, and see more details and RSVP at the Twtvite:

Happy Earth Day!

April 15, 2014

On Being Brave

What does it mean to be brave?

I've been thinking about this a lot recently. I'm not sure why. Perhaps it is seeing bravery in small, every day situations or random people. Maybe it is confronting all of my fears and feeling like I am everything but the essence of brave.

Several of my friends are venturing into the realm of pregnancy with their third baby. The idea of having a third, of going back to the newborn stage all over again, of being outnumbered, absolutely terrifies me. And as they get excited and ready for adding a new life to their growing family, I think, "Wow. She is brave."

I have a friend who was diagnosed with Stage 3 breast cancer a few months ago. She is one of the most positive, upbeat people I know. She hates complaining, and always tries to have an outlook of hope and humor. She has handled her double mastectomy, her intense chemotherapy and now radiation with such grace that I am always humbled when we talk. Talking with her, I realize I take my life, my healthy, my family for granted. And I think, "Wow, she is brave."

I remember being at camp when I was in high school and having to face the high ropes course. I absolutely can't stand heights. It is a true fear. To get onto the ropes course you had to climb a cargo net roughly 20-25 feet into the air. From the cargo net, you went from base to base between trees on various rope stations. It was frightening. I made it halfway up the cargo net and froze. My legs would not take me any higher. My arms would not pull me any further. My stomach felt sick and my entire body shook.

Yes, I was not brave that day.

I think of all the times in my life, on a daily basis, where I am not brave. From small instances of not speaking up or advocating for myself to big instances of not pursuing an opportunity because I was too afraid. 

What does it mean to be brave?

When I think of the word brave, I think of the soldiers who fight to protect our country, my friend who is battling cancer. Maybe I connect the word brave with fighting or battles. In America, we hold bravery in very high regard. It is a picture painted of a chin up, strong, fearless individual. 

I equate being brave with having no fear.

But I believe this is wrong.

I look at my friend fighting cancer, and I know she is scared even if she doesn't say so. I know soldiers who hit the front lines do not do so without trepidation. I know that every mother who finds out she is pregnant feels a mixture of joy and ohmygoshhowamIgoingtodothis. Yet I believe all of these people are brave.

So what is brave?

Being brave is not the absence of fear. Bravery is living, fighting and surviving in the face of fear. To be brave requires there to be fear, otherwise there would be no victory. Bravery is about pushing through, overcoming, and looking back to say, "Yeah, I did that!."

And it looks different for everyone. 

Bravery is hitting the front lines. Yes. Bravery is conquering chemo. Absolutely. But bravery is parenting while being outnumbered. For some, bravery is introducing yourself to someone new. Bravery is standing up for yourself after years of being put down. Bravery is attempting something you've never attempted before. Bravery is admitting a secret to the world, even though it may change other people's perspective of you. Bravery is believing in yourself when no one else does. Bravery is admitting you are afraid and owning your fears. 

Sometimes, friends, bravery is waking up in the morning and deciding to get out of bed and live the day.

So I've decided to look back on all of my non-brave moments in a new way.  When I got stuck halfway up the beginning of the ropes course, with tears running down my face in front of all my friends, I was brave. Why? Because I tried.  

was brave. 

am brave.

And you know what? We're all brave. In our own small ways. We are all filled with fear on some level. And in every moment we decide to live despite the fear, to push through in the face of fear, to overcome and survive the fear, we are brave.

You're brave.

Will you own it?

April 10, 2014

Spring Fashion Wish List #FashionFriday





After the hellacious Winter most of the US experienced the past few months, I feel like Olaf yearning for Summer .

And now that we've had a few days that tipped the thermometers to 60 degrees, I am ready to start Spring Cleaning.

Closet cleaning, that is.

I have a lot of clothes I need to donate, and my Spring wardrobe could use some updating. I've been doing my due diligence of research, and I've come up with a short Wish List of things I will be on the prowl for as I doing shopping the next few weeks (always looking for a deal, people). Some of the following items will be turned into Picture Perfection Pinspiration Outfits, as many did this past Fall. 


Here we go!

Spring Wish List

1. Maxi Dress

2. Denim Jacket

3. Sheer Blouse

4. Non-Fitted Skirt (think Zooey Deschanel in New Girl)

5. Floral Patterns (in a skirt, sundress, sheer blouse, etc)

Here are some of my Pinspirations:

What I love about these pieces that despite being a short list, I can mix and match these few items to make a bunch of outfits. I am UP for the challenge!

Check back over the next few weeks as I make my pinspirations come to life!

So now I need to know:

What's on YOUR Spring Wish List?

If you had to pick 5 mix-and-match items, what would they be?

Leave a comment - I'd love some more inspiration!

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