My little family!

My little family!

Friday, October 31, 2014

What I'm Loving Lately....

Per usual disclaimer: I was not given money or products for my reviews below. I simply love these companies & want to spread the word!

Lately, I've been really happy with a few companies I thought I would mention. We are given billions of choices when it comes to products and I am always in search of good prices + good customer service + stellar products. 

Low & behold, I've been really happy. Plus, I love supporting small businesses. Most of these are in fact large companies so I'll have to write another post on specific small businesses I enjoy -- these are just a few I jotted down in my phone in between the gym and school drop off!

Ashley Furniture HomeStore:
After 8 years of owning our once lovely king-sized mattress, we discovered we needed a new one. Our warranty was null & void because of a stain on our mattress (BOOOOO) so it was time to invest in one. I took to Facebook, made a list of recommended brands & went shopping. Benny & I narrowed it down to 4 mattresses and then Josh went back to choose one he loved. We settled on a Sealy Memory Foam mattress. Upon delivery, I quickly realized Josh hated it. I was hoping it would get better but in fact it got worse. I called the store expecting to pay a re-stocking fee and a delivery fee and assorted other fees but instead was met by kindness & understanding. They let us switch mattresses, NO more fees, free delivery. Seriously?? Best news ever!! We went with a Stearns & Foster Pillow Top and so far, we both really love it. Hoping it stays that way but I was so impressed by the customer service I received. Cheers to you Ashley Furniture!!!!!

Stitch Fix: 
I'm a mom of two babies - 3 & 1. I'm trying to lose baby weight, sell a house, enjoy my life & make my husband happy. So the thought of browsing at a mall for hours on end in search of a cute outfit is nearly impossible. Enter Stitch Fix (Stitch Fix) <-- click here! I am seriously obsessed. Quick & easy description? It's shopping at an awesome boutique without leaving your house. You sign up, fill out a lengthy form (describing your style, your body, etc) - and BAM. Your done. You pick a date for your first delivery (you can either do one time or monthly) - a personal shopper takes everything you said and sends you 5 items. It's ranging from everything (bags, jewelry, pants, dresses, skirts, shirts etc etc etc) - you choose the price point and what you want. The cost is $20. Then, you get this awesome package -- you try everything on in the comfort of your home. You decide what you want. If nothing, no harm no fail (other then the $20). If you decide on any items, the $20 is deducted from the total. If you decide on all five items? You get 25% off everything. It's amazing. This month, I ALMOST picked all 5 but talked myself out of it and settled on two. For me? All 5 items would have been roughly $250 which is not bad considering the quality of products and the items received. It's free shipping both ways, it's easy and fun. Just try it - you are not obligated by any means and I swear you'll love it. 

Rent the Runway: 
I know I've written about this before but I love this company. It's fun, simple and easy. Have an event coming up? Use them - basically, you can search for any & all dresses (cocktail, black-tie, etc) and they sent it to you in two sizes. You can also get a total second dress for $25 if you're nervous about the first. Honestly? If you're in between sizes, want something super fancy or don't feel like spending a ton of money to wear a dress one, then try them. Click here to check it out! Rent The Runway (<-- click here!)

Ebates: 
With the holidays literally sneaking up on us (HAPPY HALLOWEEN BY THE WAY!!), the best & quickest way to shop is online. Everyone is constantly offering a better deal, free shipping, extra products and more. Enter Ebates (<---click here). Prior to visiting ANY website, enter Ebates.Com first. From there, link to thousands of stores/websites. No cost involved. AND in return?? You get a percentage back from products purchased. Example? Today, Bloomingdales is offering 6% back, Expedia is offering 5.2% back and Magazines.Com is offering 40% cash back. AS IN -- you'll receive an ACTUAL CHECK of all cash you receive. There is literally NO reason not to do this - it costs nothing, no strings attached. Ebates & all the companies make money off each other and we reap the benefits!! Try it. You'll love it. 



Ok.. that's my PSA for the day. Time to clean to get ready for our open house & get prepared for HALLOWEEN!!! I'll post some pictures of Cinderella & Prince Charming ASAP! 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Lately....

A quick update while I have a few minutes.

What I've been...

Watching: Right now, I'm watching the movie "Her." I started it months ago but never finished. Loving it. Also, "House of Cards" which is pretty much blowing my mind.

Reading: I started Lena Dunham's new Book "Not That Kind of Girl." It's funny, enlightening, witty and just GOOD. I'm really loving it.

Eating: Not much. I'm trying hard to lose all this extra baby weight. I'm one pound away from Pre-Benny weight, another 11 pounds from Pre-Layla weight and another 15 pounds from my ideal weight. But on the real tip, I can't give up my Dunkin Donuts Bagels & Coffee. Despite my best effort, it's my downfall.

Stressing: This whole house business. We have officially been listed for two weeks. It's been going well and we have had some interest but no bites yet. We have our first official open house on Sunday and I'm cautiously optimistic. We also decided this past weekend to bid on a home we love but without selling our house first, we are too nervous to proceed forward. I know our perfect house is out there (even more then this one) but it's a bit nerve-racking to be dealing with all of it.

Excited For: SO MUCH!! Just a lot of amazing things happening right now. Just a few? Halloween on Friday (can't wait to see my little Cinderella & Prince Charming!), NYC with my mom & sister, Josh's mom's visit, Frozen on Ice, Thanksgiving, Hannukah, Florida, Jamaica, NYE, Disney World & Benny's 2nd birthday!!! (Woo, exhausted just thinking about it all!)

Proud of: The way Layla is learning in school. I'm also seeing so much of her personality come out. She's UBER-SENSITIVE. Like, very much so. She gets sad when her friends at school aren't nice, or don't play well. Or when Benny ignores her. She's so much more complex then I realized. And so smart. The way Benny is LOVING school - no more crying at drop off, no more crying in the corner during play-time. He's become an active participant. I love it. I'm so proud of him. The way Josh is kicking BUTT at work -- he's so passionate and smart and it shows. I love hearing the lovely things people say about him at work.

Buying: Hannukah gifts. Several pairs of boots for Layla (which she tells me she hates, so I continue to try new ones). Mattresses (we now have a new one, woo!). I need new clothes but I'm slowly buying them. As in one piece every other month - one day when I'm 75 I'll have a good wardrobe.


...ok this was boring & silly. A real entry soon. Hopefully ;)

Friday, October 17, 2014

Benny turns 21 months!










Weight: Hovering around 31 pounds. 
Height: I think around 36 inches??
Eating: All day, everyday. 
Clothes: 18-24 month, 2T & 3T! 
Diaper: Size 5
Shoe Size: 7.5


My Baby Boy....

It's Fall - a season of cooler temperatures, new beginnings and another month OLDER!! I'm so proud and love to watch the little boy you are becoming. You are so very loving and kind - adventurous and smart - sweet and silly and undeniably a MAMA'S BOY! There is simply nothing better then the look you give when you see me - you scream "MOMMMMMYYYYY" with a huge grin and rest your head on my shoulder. It's perfection. 


What you've been doing... 
Playing. Jumping. Dancing. Running. Singing. 
You are fast becoming a talking and running little guy (and the days when I can call you my little baby are slowly winding down...) - you love to play with all sorts of toys. You becoming quiet independent. I love that you can sit on the floor and focus on a toy for a long time. Yesterday, you sat attaching and re-attaching markers to each other. A tough task and you sat, serious & determined. It was adorable. You still ask for music to dance to (always "Happy", "Elmo" & "Woody") - you love balls and always want to have a catch. You love the slide and love to figure out new ways to go down (backwards, on your head, upside down, etc) - what a boy! 

What you've been eating....
FOOOOOD! You love to eat and luckily you're not too picky!!! I don't have to worry about carrying food for you if we're heading somewhere - you will try all new foods!! Some of your favorites include ALL snacks (pretzels, pirates booty, goldfish), yogurt, eggs, cheese, pork roll, hot dogs, chicken nuggets, noodles and more. It's fun but crazy how much you can eat - and it's CONSTANT! You'll finish dinner and go to the pantry 5 minutes later asking for more. You love water and you're starting to drink more almond milk "milkies" (yay!)

What you've been saying...
SO many words - I can't keep track!! More & more everyday - besides repeating everything we say, you're also retaining words more and more. We're working on simple questions (what's your name? how old are you? what's your sister's name?) - it's amazing and I love your little voice!! Sometimes you request things and I can't figure out what you want - but when I do, you clap and applaud!! I think it's a relief to know your point is being heard! Some of my favorite recent sayings include...C'mon, Let's go, I did it!, Thank you Welcome, I'm going to get your butt, let's run! and more <3 

Sleeping...
We are back on track in the best way possible!! You hit a patch where you cried at every nap and every bedtime -- it was a shock as you were SO good at sleeping for so long! But we're back to normal and you happily go down after getting kisses from Dada & Layla. You like to turn out the lights and then that's it! You go to sleep a little later now (between 6:45-7:00) and wake up around 6:30 every morning (sometimes a bit earlier, sometimes a bit later). You nap once a day in the afternoon for roughly 2 hours. 

What you've been reading & watching....
Lots of books in your room - Sesame Street (your favorite), Jack's Big music Show and Toy Story ("WOODY BUZZ!") -- you are also starting to want to watch whatever Layla is watching on the iPad (usually a random YouTube video of a person playing with Play-Doh). It's pretty sweet to watch you two lay there - you always have Brian in one hand and a thumb in your mouth!

School...
We have made it!! You no longer cry your entire day at school - YES!!! Your first few weeks were reaalllly tough but now it's getting better. You still cry a bit at drop-off and always at pick-up (overwhelmed?) but they tell me how you're really participating during the day! Playing, eating, napping and painting along with the other kiddies! So cute!!! 

Layla...
You're very best friend and favorite person. You literally can't get enough of her - this includes FULL HUGS (borderline tackles). You also fight with her constantly - you hit, pull her hair, take her toys and scream. But in the end? You hold hands and love each other. It's the silliest and cutest little love I've ever seen. 

I could write for the longest time about my love for you. You light up a room when you walk in it - like I always say, you are my gentle giant. My heart is so full of love because of you - your huge brown eyes are the prettiest thing and I love your soft skin and blond hair. 

I can't believe you'll be two in 3 months. Your party is all booked at The Little Pod (Sesame Street theme!) and it will be great. As an added bonus, we're heading to Disney World the week before your birthday -- it'll be so much fun to celebrate!!!!!!

This next month will be wonderful - full of fall fun (more pumpkins!), Halloween (hello Prince Charming) and millions of adventures together. 

Love you "to the moon"- 
Mama

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Bikini Bod - Month THREE!

Ok.
SO here we are.
Another month come & gone - and I am finally on a great roll! Despite gaining a pound last Friday (booooo) I think I'll lose this week (I cheated & weighed myself yesterday morning and if it stays the same, I'm down about another 2 pounds for a total of 7-8 pounds! This is thanks to Weight Watchers and Couch to 5K! It's working, y'all. Slowly. But I'm getting there. I really don't notice much of a difference in my body per these pictures but luckily I still have 2 1/2 more months until Jamaica. It's full speed ahead!!!

I ran in my second 5K this past week - it benefited CHOP and it was equal parts awesome & severely depressing. Pediatric cancer is very real and very scary and I hope my little bit of running & donations helps make a difference. I finished much faster then in my last 5K but still not fast (at all) - I ran about 1/2 of the time and walked fast the rest. It's so different running outside versus the treadmill but I'm getting there.

Happy October, Happy Fall & Happy new years (Rosh Hashanah was last week!)

xoxo
Courtney

I wrote this a week ago but forgot to post until today - so happy wednesday! ha! ALSO - I lost 3.2 pounds last Friday for a total of 8 pounds!!! wahoo!