Friday, July 29, 2011
If you're not familiar with the term "mamavism", don't fret.  I wasn't either until this morning.  Apparently it's an anagram for mothering and activism.  After reading a post from fellow mom blogger, Becoming SuperMommy, featuring mommy activist, Jen - The Evolving Homemaker.  In this post, Jen shares her role as an activist to help the women of Congo (a very tragic story and one that all women should be aware of).  Although being a crusader for women's rights is a very noble cause, she came to realize that there was something more important and more close to home for her to focus on, her family.  It wasn't that she was being a bad mom by being an activist, but she felt that she was so wrapped up in a situation that was taking place thousands of miles away while right there in her home her family needed her more.  Now, she's focusing her time and energy in educating her children, living locally and learning new skills "which will change the face of our national culture away from blind consumption to teaching a generation that will probably need to return a bit to the earth for the survival of humanity."
After a long day at work, coming home to a no-so-clean kitchen and an empty fridge that was practically screaming "please stock me!" with no mode of transportation to the nearest supermarket, I was faced with the dilemma of having to concoct some edible meal with the contents of my refrigerator.  I managed to find some frozen pasta samples that my husband had brought home from work (being that he works in a restaurant, vendors are always bringing him samples of new products that generally end up in our refrigerator and tested in our kitchen, oh the perks of being in the restaurant business), about a pound of spicy chorizo and a bag of broccoli rabe.  Usually I would just put all these ingredients together, but since I was out of tomato sauce, I was drawing a blank on what to make.  After a little web surfing, I came across this recipe and decided to give it a try with a few substitutions:
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
I have to start by saying that I love being a mom, it's the greatest blessing that I wouldn't give up for the world.  My daughter give meaning to every second of every day in my life now and I couldn't imagine a world without her!  That being said, are there times in your life you wished you waited to have kids?  To be completely honest, yes, there are times when I wish we had waited.  Waited until we were more financially stable (but who's really financially stable in this day and age?), waited until I was in a better situation at work, waited until I was a little older and got all the "party girl" out of my system...  There's so many reason I sometimes wish I'd waited.  Sometimes I feel guilty for thinking these things, but it's human nature to have regrets.  Well, not so much regrets, that's not really the right word to explain it because I don't regret getting pregnant so young.  It's more like I sometimes wish I had done some more things when I had the chance, before my daughter was born.  I wish I had taken advantage or had the courage, or the money, or the time to do some of the things that I can't do now because it would take away from my time with her.

A good example of this is last night.  Hubby and I were supposed to have a date night.  It wasn't really well planned out, kind of just a last minute attempt at a night out.  Well, being that it was a last minute "attempt", it pretty much blew up in my face and nothing seemed to work out.  At first I wasn't sure if I'd be able to get a sitter, then when a sitter came through (a special thanks to my family who's always available and willing to watch our little munchkin at the drop of a hat - yes, I know you're reading this mom!).  Once we had a sitter, we couldn't get a reservation at the restaurant of choice or any other restaurant that was even up to the standard of "date night" at the Deininger household.  Of course I got in a pissy mood since I had been so looking forward to this outing and having another date night flop and cancelled yet again put a damper on my outlook of the rest of the evening.  As usual, hubby did manage to save the evening with a nice charcuterie plate and a couple bottles of wine.  Although hubby saved the night, I still miss being able to come home and just decide to go out to dinner my husband without having all he hassle.  I get frustrated with myself and my husband for not making the time to be together like we had promised to when we first found out we were expecting.  So many people told us to really try our best to keep up the date night and make time for just the two of us.

Although I sometimes wish I had waited, more so for financial reasons (and sometimes more selfish reasons), I don't regret having my daughter.  I was only 24 when I got pregnant and although that may seem very young to some people, it was just right for us.  Now I have a beautiful toddler who fills my life with pure joy.  There's nothing in the world that I would trade my little munchkin for!  She's the love of my life and my whole universe.
It's just another Manic Monday!

Let's kick of the week with a blog/twitter/facebook hop! But only link up just 1 of the 3!

1. Follow your host, MommyTLC, on the linky form with your blog, twitter, or facebook page.

2. retweet/facebook, Friend Feed, Dig, stumble, whatever this hop. You can do this with the share buttons on the right hand next this post or with the awesome Wibar widget at the bottom of the page. The more people who know about this, the more fun it is...and the more followers.

3. Follow who ever follows you! Of course you might have to initiate a follow by following people on the linky.
That's it!

Manic Monday Blog Hop

If you would like me to follow you, leave a comment and your URL to your blog, twitter or facebook page!

It would be nice if you displayed the button in your post or blog sidebar and/or add the Linky Tool to your blog by clicking on the Linky below to get the code. I simply ask that you only link up Family Friendly Blogs, Twitter or Facebook accounts only.  Link up, have fun and kick off the week with a blog hop bang!

Sunday, July 24, 2011

These days, I'm all about saving a buck! So when I heard from my sister-in-law, Laurissa the DIY Mom, about making your own laundry detergent and how easy it really is, I was all ears! Not to mention that she only spent $4 to make 2 1-gallon battles! Hello, I spend close to $20 for a bottle of Tide. That's $36 big ones I'll be saving!
I'm really bad about throwing out old laundry detergent bottles, so I know I have at least 2 or 3 sitting in my basement collecting dust. That's a great start already! Now all I need is to pick up the following ingredients and I'm making me so homemade laundry detergent!

Recipe #8
2 gallons Water (hot)
1 bar Soap (grated)
2 cups Baking soda (yes baking soda this time–not washing soda)
  • Melt grated soap in a saucepan with enough hot water to cover. Cook on medium-low heat, stirring frequently until soap is melted.
  • In a large pail, pour 2 gallons hot water. Add melted soap, stir well.
  • Then add the baking soda, stir well again.
  • Use 1/2 cup per full load, 1 cup per very soiled load.

Liquid Detergents Note

Soap will be lumpy, goopy and gel-like. This is normal. Just give it a good stir before using. Make sure soap is covered with a lid when not in use. You could also pour the homemade soap in old (and cleaned) laundry detergent bottles and shake well before each use.
*If you can’t find Fels-Naptha locally, you can buy it online (check Amazon).


You can add between 10 to 15 drops of essential oil (per 2 gallons) to your homemade laundry detergent. Add once the soap has cooled to room temperature. Stir well and cover.

Essential oil ideas: lavender, rosemary, tea tree oil

My daughter and I both have eczema, so I'm supposed to get the laundry detergent that is for sensitive skin but I don't! I know, bad mommy!!! It's just the cost can sometimes be too much. I'm on a budget here people, and that's not something I do too well with. I do however use Aveeno soap for the shower and since I have the option of adding essential oils (caution - some essential oils cause skin irritation on sensitive skin, make sure that the oil you select isn't one of them by clicking here) like lavender to a fragrance free soap. I'm excited to try this new recipe and I'll let you all know how it goes!

If you've tried making your own laundry detergent, what did you think of it? Was it as easy as the recipe described? Would you recommend it to a friend? I'd love to hear your thoughts, so leave me a line!
I was doing a little blog hopping this afternoon and came across this one post by Loving Earth Mama about the 10 things she thought she knew about motherhood.  Her post got me thinking about the things I thought I had figured out before I became a mom.  My frame of mind pre-baby:
  1. Motherhood would be a snap!  I nannied for years and I was totally ready for kids.  I knew all I needed to know about being a mom from my nannying experiences.
  2. I wouldn't be one of those moms who "freak out" at their kids in the supermarket.
  3. Moms who let their baby "cry it out" were just plan WRONG!  I wasn't going to be like that.
  4. I can do it all, be a mom, have a career, and still be a social butterfly.
  5. My relationship with husband would stay the same.  We've been through it all and nothing could pose a challenge for us.
  6. Breastfeeding would be easy as pie.  I didn't get why some women had such a hard time.
  7. I would never be one of those moms who left their needs by the wayside.  I'd always make sure that baby and I were always presentable.
  8. I'd still be able to get plenty of rest after baby came and all those nay sayers who keep telling me to "rest now, you won't get to once baby comes along" don't know me what I'm capable of.
  9. I can handle anything that comes my way and I didn't need anyone's help.
  10. My life would stay the same, just with a baby.
My frame of mind post baby:
  1. I don't know jack squat!  All of a sudden I'm responsible for the life of this little person.  And being a mom is a full-time gig, there's no breaks and no real-time outs for mom.  Yes, I had plenty of experience with children but they were never my children and that changes the scope on everything.  You follow other people's rules when it comes to nannying, but you have to come up with the game plan when you're a parent.  If you screw up, it's on you baby!  When it comes to motherhood and parenting, I'm learning as I go.  I now understand why my parents always said I was their "guinea pig".  It's a learning process and unfortunately, the first child is usually the one parents experiment on.  To my baby, I have to say: Sorry honey, I'm trying my best!
  2. Although I love my child with all my heart, sometimes I just lose it and sometimes in the most embarrassing places.  You can't help it when you're just at your wit's end and your child does something that just breaks the camel's back.  I would never lay a hand on my child, but I can be a little harsh with my words and lose my temper.  I don't mean to and I don't do it intentionally, but you mother's out there know what I'm talking about.  Sometimes you simply can't help it!
  3. I tried at the beginning to not let my baby cry it out and would rush to her crib or bassinet the instant she made a peep.  I'm not saying that my daughter is a cry baby now, but I've learned my lesson that letting them cry it out is a good thing.  Teaches them to self sooth and, later on it teaches them that they can't have everything they want.  This is a good technique and it will most definitely be used the next time around.
  4. I can't do it all, not all the time.  Sometimes I can do a lot, but something always falls through the cracks.  I'm not super mom and I've learned to accept that.  It doesn't mean, though, that I've thrown in the towel and have accepted defeat.  I'm still striving to do my best at everything, but I've learned to accept that sometimes, not everything will get done and get over it.
  5. Although my husband and I love each other very much, having a child has put a bit of a strain in our relationship.  It's not my daughter's fault by any means, but making time for us has been more difficult.  It's a work in progress and it's something that needs to be worked at.  Keeping that spark in the relationship is something that you'll have to put effort into and more time for.  Don't just let your relationship fall to the way side and think you can pick things back up at a later time when the kids are older.  This is something we're still working on and will continue to work on for the rest of our lives.
  6. Some women have it easy when it comes to breast-feeding and some just don't!  I was one of the one's who didn't.  It took time and practice and lots of help.  One of the nurses had me a the brink of giving up and thankfully I was strong enough to tell her to leave.  Thankfully, the next nurse to come help me was much more patient and can help me learn.  It wasn't easy, but with time and practice I was able to get the hang of it.
  7. Finding time to do my hair, makeup and sometimes even getting out of my pj's at the beginning was sometime near impossible!  Even two years later, I sometimes struggle to get myself properly dress.  I now understand why moms put their needs aside, because the need of their child and their family will always come before their own.  I willingly put my family's needs far above my own and sometimes fulfilling these needs means I just don't have the time to take care of myself.
  8. I'm so sorry for doubting anyone who told me to rest while I could, I was just plain old WRONG when it came to this!
  9. When it comes to motherhood, I'm pretty much clueless and am learning things as I go.  I've learned to rely on fellow moms for advice and support.  After my daughter was born I found out how little I truly knew about what it takes to be a good mom.  It was hard to ask at the beginning, but now I welcome it so if you have advice to share, please do!
  10. My life has changed in so many ways it's hard to keep track.  My old life, though it was only a little over 2 years ago, seems more like a distant memory.  There's no more staying out late, coming and going when I please, etc.  Now things need to be planned out because just getting out the door is an hour ordeal.
Motherhood has changed my life in more ways that I ever imagined.  It's opened my eyes and made me realize that there's still so much for me to learn and figure out.  I don't have the answers to everything and when it comes to raising a child, I'll take all the help I can get.  Becoming a mom has been the greatest blessing of my life and I am so lucky to have such a wonderful, spunky and outgoing little girl.  She has taught me to be more humble and I'm grateful for every moment and experience I get to share with her.  My life is definitely more enriched and fulfilled with her in it.
Friday, July 22, 2011

Photo courtesy of
I'm dying here, people! Not literally, but figuratively. How the heck is it possible to have 4 cameras in the house and only one of them is working? Of course, the one that actually does work is on my husband's iPhone and is not around when I need it! I mean, COME ON NOW! Our cameras are only a couple of years old, yet neither will hold a batter charge and one won't even turn on when I put fresh batteries in. Then there's my iPhone, which I can't live without - partially because of its handy dandy camera - that at the moment is frozen and has been like this for the past few months. I know, I need to get that checked out, but apparently it's not a software problem according to the Apple Tech I spoke to on the phone. It appears to be a hardware problem meaning I need to get a new phone. Thankfully, mine is still under warranty so I shouldn't have to pay for the replacement, but still!

I could just about scream right now. AHHHHH!!!! A little dramatic? Probably, but you have to understand! I'm missing priceless moments here, people! Milestones and silliness that I'll never be able to capture again. I'm now relying on my webcam to take still shots, but that's not very much help. If you've used a webcam before, you'll know what I mean. The picture quality isn't the greatest and there's a little lag time that mostly means I end up missing the moment anyways unless by some miracle I can get my toddler to sit still for 3 seconds. Something's gotta be done ASAP, like yesterday!

How is any mom supposed to work under these conditions? One of the joys of being a mom is capturing those little moments when your child does something new, experiences something for the first time, or does something that's outright silly. I hate missing out on this. I finally realized how much I've been missing out on when I was going over recent pictures. The last time I really took any pictures of my daughter was on her birthday, and they were very few. Thankfully, my husband has been taking some pictures here and there when he's around, but that's limited too. After looking at the photos from January and one we took just this past week at Hershey Park, I was astonished at how much she's changed in what seems like such a short period of time. She's such a little lady now and with a spunky personality to boot. I feel like kicking myself for allowing so much time to go by and letting so many precious moments slip through my fingers. BAD MOMMY!

There's only one thing left to do, get my stinking iPhone fixed, repaired, replaced, WHATEVER! It just needs to work again.
After reading a post from fellow blogger, The Domestic Diva, about how she recently embraced her "curly girl side", I was curious to see what that was all about. She wrote about how another blogger had gone back to the "no-pooing" way of washing her hair. Ok, that doesn't sound good, right? Wrong! Apparently, the term "no-pooing" means not using shampoo. As it turns out, most shampoos have some form of sulfate as a main ingredient and these sulfates are typically found in dish washing detergent. These sulfates are lathering ingredients that break down oils. Yes, our scalpe naturally releases oils and too much build up of these oils lead to hair looking and feeling greasy and totally gross, but a small amount of these oils is needed to help protect and nourish hair.
Here's where I was really intregued: curly hair needs more of these natural oils than straight hair! And if you have curly hair and you're washing your hair normally with shampoo, you're stripping your hair of these oils which in turn causes frizzy, unmanageable hair. Also, most people who think that just have wavy hair can actually have beautiful curls and never even know it - CASE IN POINT, ME!

I never even knew my hairs true potential until after I read this post! I always thought my hair was just wavy and unruly and that the frizz was caused by the over abundance of humity in my area of the region. In realizy, my hair is not wavy at all! According to Lorraine Massey, creator and co-owner of Devachan Salon in New York City and author of Curly Girl: The Handbook, my hair would be classified as "Botticelli Curls" - yes, as in like the hair in Botticelli's Birth of Venus! I'm thrilled that I found out about this. All this time I've been dealing with the worst hair, always having to tie it back because there was simply nothing I could do with it if I didn't flat iron it or attack it was a curling iron. All this time all that I needed was to stop using, well detergent, basically, on my hair and allow those oh so beautiful natural oils do their thing.

For the past week, I've gone to the "no-pooing" method, stopped using a towel, even for a second, to dry my hair and have purchased the proper silicon free products to style my hair. Rather than towel drying my hair, I've turned to using a cotton t-shirt and plopping (yes, that is a technical term and I've attached a link if you want to know more about it) my hair to help speed up the drying time. As a result, here's what my hair looks like now...

For more tips, check out Curly Girl Method WikiHow.

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