Monday, October 15, 2018

Monday Munchies

Hello everybody!  It has been a hot second since I've been on this old blog of mine! I can't believe we're well into October-where has time gone?  I spent the summer with friends that are like family, and then it was full stream ahead with the beginning of the school year, all the Jewish holidays, and then my Safety Day event last weekend! Whew!!! This somewhat quiet time has been highly anticipated for quite some time.  I do enjoy being busy, but that feeling of inadequacy, or lack of house upkeep-and blog upkeep for that matter, had me longing for a little bit less of a schedule! 

So, I have made my way back here!  With the Jewish new year and the new school year almost coinciding, it almost feels as if making a new years resolution would be appropriate.  Last year at this time I was deep in a move, heavily pregnant, and struggling to hang on.  This year, I feel much more settled, I'm learning how to deal with the unexpected, I'm beginning to fill my calendar with work I enjoy, and I'm looking forward to re-committing to the things that make me happy, and I can't wait to share that with you!

Anyway, let's get back to this week's recipe.   Cooking has been a struggle-with the business of what life was, and is, five crazy schedules to juggle-we have been resorting to a lot of frozen, "fast" food.  I am so ready to be done with that!  On a recent trip to Costco, I found they had frozen Tilapia loins-which I had never seen before, so I picked up a bag, and when I needed a dinner that wasn't pizza, I pulled it out.  All of my cookbooks are still packed away, so I gave Pinterest a quick search.  

This recipe is so easy, and was definitely a crowd pleaser-even my kids indulged!  What I love about buying fish is that you can find it ready to go-literally all you have to do is place it in the pan, and prepare your sauce, or season the fish.  So, I placed the butter in the small pot, turned the burner on low and while I was opening all the individual pouches of tilapia, the butter was melting.  Then, I used the pre-crushed garlic you buy in a container, so all I had to do was mix in the remaining ingredients, add salt and pepper to the fish, and viola-done. I will add that a good quality zester, like this one, definitely makes it easier and for me, I find joy in a quality zester to be honest.  

Then, just let it bake!  

I also made pasta and tossed it with some olive oil and spices-I figured this would make sure the kiddos were appeased and could eat enough to really be full, and the adults could manage to consume a reasonable amount of carbs. 

I will definitely be making this again!

Thursday, June 7, 2018

Sunscreen to-go bags

I'm sure many of you are enjoying your summer days at the pool. I know my kids are! But that also means needing to be diligent with sunscreen usage and re-application.  There are a lot of different options for sun protection, and it can get overwhelming needing them in so many different places at so many varying times. That is why I created sunscreen to-go bags for each of my kids.  During the hot months they reside in their back packs for hot recess days.  Then they can easily be transferred as needed-to the pool bag, with friends, or into the stroller for a summer stroll-protected of course!  

I bought these bags, and each child got to choose their color.  They're the perfect travel size-fitting even the large bottle of sunscreen, but not too large. They're also waterproof, so it allows for easy clean-up!

Let's take a look inside! 

I chose to use Arbonne sunscreen

It's water-resistant, and made with sensitive little ones in mind!  

I was also super excited to add this little guy to the pouches!  Lips can burn too, and with these long sunny days, you can't go wrong!  This doesn't appear to be available anymore, but here's a good alternative.  

These to-go bags make it easy to ensure you'll never be without sunscreen. Make a bag with your favorite goodies, and either take it with you, or make several and stash them in all the important places: the car, the diaper bag, the stroller, a name it!

I am a big fan of Arbonne products.  If you'd like to shop through a consultant, or just hear more information about their products, you can reach Alana at

Sunny days are ahead!

Monday, June 4, 2018

Monday Munchies

I always get super excited when the recipes I try end up being ones I can't wait to share here.  Guys, you seriously lucked out here. I wish I could send you each a piece of this cheesecake.  Seriously, you want to try this.  Cheesecake is a customary dish at our most recent holiday. I am always hesitant to make it since making I only once a year, I never feel like I truly have my feet wet!   But this one, this one is a keeper-and I didn't even use a spring form pan.  I will say that a regular disposable pie dish isn't as deep as a spring form pan, so I didn't need as much batter as the recipe called for. 

I am not a lover of cheesecake, but this was just the right amount of "cheese" flavor.  Add in the oreo crust and the chocolate filling with the chocolate ganache on top-perfection!

You can find the recipe HERE!

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Fun in the sun: Sunscreen

This is the first of a few hopeful sunscreen posts...maybe don't hold your breath though.  With summer rapidly approaching, that means there are many pool days ahead of us!  I've always been extremely sensitive to the sun, so sunscreen application was always a big one for me.  I also have acne prone skin, so I dreaded sunscreen on my face. But, this is a big one ladies and gents-facial sunscreen is important all year round.  Thankfully, a couple years ago I was introduced to Supergoop on one of my routine visits to Sephora, and it's been an answer from the makeup angels.  

Let's start with this one, my first Supergoop purchase.  The larger bottle is 3.4 oz and only $28, that's a steal!  This is a makeup setting spray that also has sunscreen.  I first picked this up because the moisturizer I was switching to no longer contained sunscreen in it, but a lot of times, adding sunscreen creates unwanted oil.  This product was a dream-I could use whatever moisturizer I wanted without needing to worry about if it contained sunscreen, and then I didn't have to add a product that might potentially disrupt my makeup!  This product never requires hands to touch your face, and it's a quick re-application that dries matte and it has a wonderful minty scent.  I also think this would be fabulous for kids! Here was my problem, I purchased this a couple times and both times my sprayer broke, leaving me unable to spray the mist!  For awhile I was pouring it onto my hands and then patting it into my face, but then this no longer was hands free application.  Aside from that, I wondered if the mist allowed me to actually apply the correct amount of sunscreen, and that seems to be an issue with mists-not enough or lack of coverage from mists are known to be an issue.  

After my mister kept breaking, I decided to try this Supergoop setting powder.  They came out with colors now, but this was the translucent for all skin colors.  So here's the deal...

That's the sunscreen-that little .15 oz container, costs $30.  The truth is I found this a little challenging to use.  You first insert the powder container into the bottom of the brush.  

 And then you twist it up, so it can then fill the brush. 


The brush has different ways to be twisted to work properly, and I just found it complicated to use.  Even though this was another hands free application option, and kid friendly, I still had the same question: was I applying enough sunscreen this way?  Ultimately, because of the price, the difficulty to apply, and the question about how much to apply-I returned it.  

These next two Supergoop products are really a tie for me in terms of performance.  

There's something really fun about this mousse application. It has a really awesome scent, and once it's "broken down" beyond it's mousse status, it applies and feels like a cream/liquid.  For 3.4 oz, which is the smaller bottle, the cost is $19.  I was skeptical, but I have to say sunscreen mousse really performed well with my primer routine and it did not affect my makeup.  You can check out other popular primers I tried too! 

I've been alternating between the mousse and this sunscreen.

2.4 oz is $19.  

I have to say that the mousse and this sunscreen perform the same once they're applied to your face.  I have continuously alternated and attempted to find some difference to help me decide on one vs the other, and I can't.  The prices are also so similar if you buy in their respective increments.  

One of the products pictured, I never tried before returning.  

So, I opted not to try this product.  I knew I was going to return it, so I didn't feel right opening it and trying it just for the sake of this post.  By the way, Sephora will take back open and used products if it's mostly full and returned within 60 days. This product has Vitamin C, and I just didn't want to venture into the Vitamin C realm yet.  And I again questioned the amount that was being applied since it's a mist.  

I am a loyal Sephora shopper, but if you find a product is sold out there, check out Derm Store!  They even have their own rewards program, carry a lot of the typical brands-and even some off the beaten path ones.   Some lines have additional products that aren't sold at Sephora, but you can find them at the Derm Store.  I can't wait to show you what I've tried from them! 

If you're new to applying facial sunscreen, and looking for a quick fix, try this Clarins sunscreen add-in.  I used this for years, and loved it.  But, after realizing I needed to switch to a water based moisturizer, I wanted to try to keep the new moisturizer as-is, so as not to impact it's true affect.  

If have questions about how to wear sunscreen, or you just need some convincing to wear sunscreen, check out these facts from The American Academy of Dermatology.  

Happy Pool Days!

Friday, May 25, 2018


Sometimes, when I'm deep in the throes of mommy-hood, I'm able to catch myself and realize what a blessing has been bestowed upon me.  To remember that I wondered if my house would ever be messy from toys, would I ever have smudged walls from dirty fingers, and overflowing laundry baskets...and yesterday marked one year since my first ultrasound with Simmy where we saw and heard her beautiful heartbeat, our rainbow baby.  

Sometimes, when I'm surrounded by silence, I remember back to the year before, Memorial Day weekend, this day, was when we confirmed our first miscarriage.  In my day to day life, those memories are a lifetime ago, buried deep. But in the quiet of the night, especially last night, it feels like yesterday.  And the tears come rushing to the surface as I relive that pain.  That weekend, I stayed home, DrH took the kids out, and I induced my miscarriage and then boxed up every single baby item, not knowing if my house would ever be graced again with such teeny tiny, intricately detailed items.  

Two years ago...a lifetime...but not.

I am thankful for my miscarriage, it taught me to be kind, it taught me to be grateful, it taught me grace: personally, and to give it to others.  

If you are deep in the throws of infertility, hang on.  
If you're struggling, hang on.
If you're questioning, hang on.
If you're scared, hang on.
If you're angry, hang on. 
It's worth it. 

Only in the darkness can you see the stars ~ Martin Luther King Jr.  

You can read about my first questionable ultrasound HERE, and our confirmed miscarriage HERE.  You can read about my pregnancy after miscarriage HERE.  

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Simmy is 5 months

Where has 5 months gone?!? How can it be?  I was walking in the grocery store the other day, pushing Simmy in the stroller, when a mother strolled past with a very new baby.  I glimpsed at Simmy...and I realized my new, tiny baby was no more. 

 She has been replaced with a smiley, gurgling, raspberry blowing infant!  We constantly get stopped with comments about her cuteness and her good behavior.   

Weight: According to our at-home scale Simmy is 13.3 lbs, which is a gain of 1.3 in a month!

Height: we do not go to the pediatrician for another month, so I'll report back then!

Milestones: Simmy is attempting to roll over.  She hasn't yet rolled over, but she can get onto her sides and she tries and tries to get onto her tummy, but she hasn't been successful yet.

 We have introduced tummy time on this mat, and she loves it, in small doses of course. 

 We have just started cooing and blowing raspberries and all sorts of other gurgles.  We have hit that annoying stage where all the shirts are soaked!  Simmy is showing an interest in holding objects, or fingers, and attempting to get them into her mouth.

  We also made our way to NY and were able to meet Dr. Blotner and Co. 

Likes: She now desires nap time to take place in a bed-like item, such as the stroller bassinet.  We do not currently own a crib, or a pack-n-play, so we need to work on that, and we're hopefully going to transition to the stroller seat as oppose to the bassinet because I think she'd enjoy that. But, we use the bassinet to walk to synagogue on Saturdays, and that's usually during nap time, so I might hold off. She enjoys the bouncer and this sit-assistant.

Dislikes: she is starting to dislike being in her swing for long periods of time.   She also dislikes when I walk away from her. 

Sleep: She goes to bed between 8pm-9pm, and she goes to sleep much easier if she is nursed to sleep in our bed.  Have you seen this article on co-sleeping?  She wakes anywhere between 11pm-1am, usually whenever it is that I climb into bed is when she'll wake up.  She then wakes up every two hours until about 6/7am.  Then she'll do another longer stretch until about 9/10am.  

Medical: allergy testing is coming up, next month!  If she does not test positive for nuts, we will be having a nut party celebration! #youdontknowwhatyougottillitsgone #lemmesayitagain 

Eating: Simmy is still exclusively breastfed, without bottles.  When the others were babies, I was either in school or working, so I had to pump.  This is my first time not needing to pump, and therefore it hasn't happened yet.  But, she's getting older, and I could definitely fathom leaving her for a short amount of time, so we will hopefully attempt pumping and bottle feeding soon-just in case I get a rare night out!  At our four month appointment, beginning solids was not a discussion we had. I assume it will be brought up at the 6 month appointment.  I am looking into following a method called Baby Lead Weaning.  

You can check out Simmy's  two month HERE, three and four month HERE
Check out our newborn essentials too!

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Monday Munchies....

Anyone else one of those people where if their routine is thrown off by the slightest bit, it throws everything off?  Just me?  Well, just as I sat down write this post, Simmy woke up crying, and well, there went my Monday, here's a Monday Munchies on a Tuesday. 

 A sweet side dish is a must for us at our Shabbos table.  So when I decided to cut back on the amount of dishes, I knew that I would still be making something that fit that bill.  I have made apple kugel quite a bit recently, so I wanted to change it up, but I still needed an easy recipe.  

What's nice about this recipe is that it can almost be a one-bowl prep, aside for melting the margarine, which is pretty simple.  It also has a veggie component without requiring all the prep work.  You can make some swaps for healthy alternatives, and it's super kid friendly. I did not top the kugel with cornflakes, rather just cinnamon.  

4 4oz jars baby food carrots
11/2 sticks margarine 
1 cup sugar
1 cup flour
3 large eggs
1/4 cup soy milk
1/4 cup brown sugar 
2 cups cornflakes 

I melted the margarine, and then added it to a bowl with the carrots, sugar, flour, eggs, milk and brown sugar.  The original recipe calls for melting 1/2 cup of the margarine, and then later on melting the remaining margarine with the brown sugar, but I skipped that part, and it all combined effortlessly- reduce the amount of margarine you use because 4 tablespoons is for coating the cornflakes, and you can chose to add the brown sugar into the mix or leave it out if you don't coat the cornflakes. I mistakenly, in my rush of cooking, added the brown sugar into the batter instead of withholding it since I wasn't using the topping, and it still turned out great.  

Pour into a greased 9inch pan-I used a round casserole dish and bake at 350 for about an hour. 

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