Dear Olive Garden,
Where do I even begin… I guess I should start out by stating that I have loved you for as long as I can remember. When I was growing up, it was such a treat to dine at your establishment and feast on both delicious bowls of spaghetti and those perfectly soft and salty bread sticks. As I grew, your Tiramisu and Moscato made my taste buds sing! Thank you for making these little outings so delicious and memorable.
Now comes the difficult part of this letter… I am very upset with you, OG. You have cut me where I hurt the most: my tender mother’s heart.
Deciding whether or not to leave your job after having kids is tough… you want to be able to stay-at-home and watch their every movement/development, but can you afford it? Is it the best choice for your family? Can you afford not to? Believe me; as a stay-at-home mamma to a 2-year-old (with another on the way), I know the questions and variables that go into this important decision. If you do decide to stay home, there are easy ways to make a few extra bucks from your computer, smartphone, or other “smart” devices.
We take 100s, maybe 1000s, of photos a year, but how many of us actually take the time to print them? If you have a photo printer, you’re probably turning those beautiful memories into prints. But, if you’re printerless (like me!), here are a few different options to help you turn your photos into prints!
If you have a toddler or young child who has watched PBS Kids, Sprout, Disney, or Nickelodeon in the last year, there is a good chance that you are familiar with advertisements for an online, early learning academy called ABCmouse. Like most commercials and advertisements, I didn’t give this program a second thought… After all, how great could this online learning program be? Aren’t there a million others? What makes this one in particular so special?
Can I be brutally honest with you for just a second?
Promise me you won’t judge?
Okay, good. (And thank you.)
I have never stepped foot in a gym.
I’m not sure if it’s because I’m intimidated, cheap, or lazy, but I have never had a real desire to go work out with equipment. Nevertheless, I do still have a desire to be fit and healthy, so I try to get in as much walking, toddler chasing, planks, lunges, dancing, etc. as I can each day. To track my steps and movement, I had been using the Health feature of my iPhone, but felt I wasn’t getting an accurate reading (seeing as though I had to have my phone on me at all times, which hardly ever happens at home).
A few weeks ago, my husband and I returned from traveling bliss: A glorious, baby-less, all-inclusive anniversary trip to Cancun.
At my high school, we do the True Colors Personality test with the students. I’m a super-duper, shining gold person. This means I love structure, rules, organization – all those good things!
In addition to the aforementioned love of structure, rules, and organization, I decided to get into weekly meal planning to reduce the amount of times my husband and I ate out each week. I know how expensive (and somewhat unhealthy) it can be for two of us, I can’t imagine how expensive it is for families.
Raise your hand if you are constantly checking your phone for emails, social media notifications, and texts.
*coyly raises hand*
I will be the FIRST to admit that my husband and I are the worst at this — in fact, if we don’t have our phones on us, we panic. That’s just how we are though; in fact, it’s how our entire generation acts and communicates… Right?
As I was making dinner earlier this summer, I heard a report on the CBS Evening News regarding how parent’s technology habits are affecting our children. Now, I know I always have my phone on me, but there is no way it is impacting my son. After all, it’s not like I text in the car, check my Facebook during dinner, or Tweet during mass — I doubt he even notices me using it… right?!
A few months ago when we were visiting my parents, we ran into some friends of the family that have a little girl who is just a few months younger than my almost 2-year-old. After their initial hugs and open mouth kisses (my son moves quickly…), they began fighting over her mom’s ringing cell phone. To alleviate the situation, I handed Jackson my cell phone and the two began pressing buttons, taking selfies, and opening up every single app on my shattered iPhone. Is anyone else terrified by how smart toddlers are when it comes to technology?
In this day of modern technology, it is inevitable that our tots are in constant contact with smartphones, tablets, computers, or electronic toys that are way smarter than anything we ever had. That being said, I am constantly scouring both Google Play and the iTunes App Store for fun and educational games to keep my technology curious toddler occupied. After doing a little research, I found these 10 top rated apps for toddlers and figured Jackson and I would take them each for a spin: