November 19, 2015

Letters To My (Our) Children: Always Give Thanks

Dear JJ and Moo,

If I had to choose one habit that I wanted you two have for the rest of your life, I would pick for you to always give thanks.  ALWAYS.  No matter what.  This has been one of the biggest life lessons that I've had to learn since my twenty-something odd years on Earth.  While this is no easy feat to master, it's well worth practicing.  Why?

A lot of people underestimate the power of being able to always give thanks no matter what the situation is.  They feel like what's the point in giving thanks or being thankful when things don't go way.  Many people don't see the value in demonstrating gratitude even in the midst of difficult times and hard trials.  I'm so glad that I'm no longer one of those people.

You see unconditional gratitude changes everything!  It's the difference between having an entire bad day versus having one negative moment throughout your day.  When we are able to give thanks when life is at its worst, bad things don't consume you as much.  Practicing unconditional gratitude helps to make us more humble, more compassionate, more understanding, more optimistic and more trusting of God's path for our lives.

Moo, when we found out you had septic hip right after your second birthday, I was more afraid than I had ever been up to that point in my life.  A week early you had just had a check-up at the pediatrician's and she had said that we should expect you start having growing pains because you were hitting the age that it started to happen.  She mentioned that one of the places kids feel pain when their bodies hit a mini growth spurt were in their joints like in the hips and legs.   So that first day you complained about having pain in that area, I thought it was from you having some growing pains, but by the next day things had gotten progressively worse really fast.

We ended up going to three different hospitals, seeing a bunch of specialists and listening to talks of them possibly having to put you under and do a test that could have left you paralyzed or more.  I wanted to fall to pieces, but I prayed instead.  The first thing I remember saying when I started praying was "Lord, thank you."  I didn't give Him thanks because I wanted you to be sick or in pain.  I gave Him thanks because for allowing me to not overlook something that turned out to be really serious.

I was grateful that we were surrounded by some of the best children's specialists in the world and that everyone was working hard to figure out what was going on with you.  I gave Him thanks because I knew that whatever the outcome would be, I had had the privilege of being your mom and together this situation would make us stronger.  And it did.  

You were such a trooper as they poked and prodded you giving you x-ray after x-ray and running blood tests as well as urine tests.  While incredibly painful, I was relieved to find out that septic hip was rare, but could happen to you again at point in your life.  I'm grateful for this past experience because now we know the warning signs should it indeed happen again.

JJ, helping you manage your special needs has helped me to become more grateful that we all have differences.  You are so uniquely you and I love it!  You can be incredibly shy at times, but super bossy.  Sometimes you can't always express your thoughts using words, but it's made you a million times better at expressing your love for us.

I'm grateful for the opportunities to have witnessed the power to overcome hurdles that is within you.  I know that it's hard being autistic, but you don't like it slow you down.  I give thanks that instead it's built within the spirit of a fighter.  Not the kind that fights with his hands, but his heart, his will and determination to achieve greatness no matter how big or small.

Being your mom has taught me that being normal is subjective.  You're beautiful just as you are.  You challenge me to be more and I love it.

Just remember, you two, that life won't be all roses, but when you learn to always give thanks, it won't be all bad either.  Everything happens for a reason and for that alone we should be grateful.  I love you both!


Click on over to Everyday Eyecandy to read LaShawn's letter to her oh so adorable son, Pookah: http://wp.me/p3Pek5-2VP

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November 15, 2015

End of the Road?

Happy Sunday!  It's the end of Week Two of National Blog Posting Month.  This week felt incredibly long.  Things are starting to look like I've reached the end of the road in this year's NaBloPoMo challenge.

For starters those cold germs I mentioned last week that were floating around the YUMMommy household have decided to wage an all out, full force attack on me and JJ's immune system.  Moo's immune system seems to have finally gotten a little stronger thanks to her being sick pretty much all last year.  Unfortunately, my immune system has been weak since birth and has chosen to stay that way. Therefore, JJ and I are both laid up in bed with runny noses, chest congestion, bad couches, voices almost gone, fever and minor body aches.

I've never been more jealous of my kids than I am now.  Moo shook her bug in less than 24 hours and JJ has still managed to have a decent amount of energy as well as his usual appetite.  Me? Not so much.  I feel like I've been in a bad car wreck and food is the least appealing.  And I forgot to mention that my throat is swollen.

Also, today the kids almost took out the Christmas tree wrestling!  This is what happens when you are the mother of a boy and a princess who's also in touch with her tom boy side.  Thankfully, no kids were hurt, I was able to straighten the tree back out and it's still standing.  You all might recall, Moo took out our tree two years ago on Christmas Day and we had to trash it because one of the trunk poles broke.

Lastly, the fan on my computer died.  And because my laptop doesn't want me to overheat the circuits and kill it for good, it will only stay on for 15 seconds at a time.  It chooses to use those 15 seconds to let know that my fan has crashed and that it will be shutting down automatically to avoid damage.

So, I am currently blogging from my phone.  Listen when I tell y'all this blogging and motherhood stuff ain't easy!  The struggle is too real right about now.  If you don't see me around these parts tomorrow or the rest of the week, know that my NaBloPoMo journey is done because I'm doped up on meds and I'm a light weight when it comes to any medicine or my computer is still down because I'm waiting on a replacement fan.

Love you guys!

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November 14, 2015

Rainbow Light Power Sours and Bear Essentials Multivitamin Gummies

Disclosure: I received this product for free from the sponsor of the Moms Meet program, May Media Group LLC, who received it directly from the manufacturer. As a Moms Meet blogger, I agree to use this product and post my opinion on my blog. My opinions do not necessarily reflect the opinions of May Media Group LLC or the manufacturer of this product.

As parents it's important to make sure that our children are getting the right amount of nutrition so that they can grow up healthy and strong.  Whether or not your child is a picky eater, it can be hard to make sure that they are getting all of their vitamins through their food on a daily basis.  Thankfully, there are a variety of multivitamins available to pick up the slack so to speak.  Speaking of multivitamins, we recently got the opportunity to try out Rainbow Light Power Sours and Bear Essentials Multivitamin Gummies.  You can find out what we liked about each multivitamin below.

What We Liked Most

One of the first things I liked about the Power Sours and Bear Essentials was the packaging.  The all of the important information such as quantity, flavors, etc is easy to read.  There's nothing more frustrating than having to pick through tiny text to find out what flavor a product is or what's the net weight, etc.  The actual plastic pouches that the vitamins come are super easy to open.  This is great when you have children who want to be independent and open their own vitamins.

Plus, who has time to wrestle with hard to open packaging or hunt down scissors everyday?  Not I.  We all liked that the multivitamin gummies looked and tasted like candy.  If you've ever had to give a child medicine, you know it can be a very difficult task.  By making the vitamins gummies with a sweet and sour flavor, Rainbow Light helped to make vitamins more appealing to my kids and their taste buds.

Speaking of taste, I liked that there are NO artificial colors, flavors or sweeteners used in these vitamins.   Personally, I feel that artificial ingredients subtract from the nutrients of vitamins (and food in general) when used.  I felt confident that my kids were getting all of their vitamins and no harmful stuff.

Power Sours and Bear Essentials both support optimal growth and development which is huge for me having a special needs child with developmental issues.  I like that he's getting additional nutrients to support his development.  They also promote healthy bones, brain and eyes as well as balance energy.

And of the biggest reasons we'll be ordering more Power Sours and Bear Essentials is that they are gluten-free and soy-free.  Both of my kids are allergic to gluten and JJ is also highly allergic to soy.  It's been a struggle in the past to find vitamins that were both gluten-free and soy-free.

Overall, we really enjoyed trying out the Rainbow Light Power Sours and Bear Essential Multivitamin Gummies.  The only complaints came from Moo.  Her issue was she felt like she wasn't getting the same amount of vitamins with the Bear Essentials because there were only three bears to a pack whereas, the Power Sours were four to a pack.  I did explain to her that the bears were much larger than the Power Sours and so everything did in fact equal out and she wasn't getting swindled. LOL.

So, if you're in the market for a new multivitamin for your littles be sure to give these a try. The Power Sours are $17.99/box and the Bear Essentials are $18.49/box.  Be sure to check out the Rainbow Light official website and you can find them on Facebook and Twitter.

How do you make sure your kids are getting all of their vitamins?

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November 13, 2015

Friday Five

Hello Friday!  Hello start to the weekend.  I don't know about you, but I'm going to try my best to sleep in all weekend!  Try being the operative word.  For some reason, Moo is incapable of sleeping in and always ends up waking everyone else up.

That's probably the biggest downside to cosleeping for us.  Anyways, I thought that since it's been forever since I've done a Friday Five or Five on Friday post that I would do one today.  Without further ado, here are five things that are on my mind currently.


My heart, thoughts and prayers are in Paris tonight after hearing about the hostage situation, bombings and shootings of innocent people that happened today.  I was a little panicked at first because a blogger I know is currently in Paris and nobody had heard anything from her, but she was finally able to reach out an hour ago to let us know she was safe.  I have a few friends who are still waiting to hear from family members and other friends who are in Paris- some vacationing, some actual residents.

I'll never understand why terrorists result to violence thinking it's going to rid the world of whatever evil they see.  What gives them the right to decide who lives or dies when they do things like this?  It's beyond frustrating, sad, heartbreaking and mind boggling that these groups want to force their views and beliefs on the rest of the world throw senseless violence.  As a parent, I keep hoping that no children are among those hurt or murdered, but the realistic side of me knows that's not going to be the case.

I definitely hope that you will join me in keeping Paris (and our world in general) in prayer whatever your religion is.  So much foolishness and cruelty is going on around us that we all need to come together as just people uniting in love despite our differences. 


The sick germs have invaded us.  It started with Moo's swollen eyes on Halloween.  Yesterday, JJ woke up with a runny nose that ended resulting in a sleepless night for both of us.  This morning I wasn't feeling too hot myself.  Now, I have the beginnings of what feels like a pounding headache, light sneezing and stuffed-up ears and a slightly runny nose.

I've stocked up on cold meds and let's hope this bug is gone by the end of the weekend because I have NaBloPoMo, NaNoWriMo and other stuff to get done/through still.


I'm in the midst of scheduling a date for family holiday pictures and I just realized that we have nothing really to wear.  Nothing that coordinates at least.  Moo has lots of cute red holiday dresses, but JJ is fresh out of formal pants that fit.  We don't really buy him slacks because our church is very relaxed and prefer kids come in jeans or khakis since they'll be in the nursery coloring or outside on the playground while the adults hear the service.  Also, the last formal event we had to attend as a family was my sister's wedding almost three years ago.

Then since I've shed a few more pounds and cleaned out my closet, all I have is a handful of dresses- three of which are spring floral dresses and the rest are black or grey.  As of now the Mr is not planning on joining us for these photos because of his work schedule.  I'm hoping that we can put something together without having to buying new stuff.  


I'm in the market for a new phone, but haven't a clue what to get.  Nothing is really jumping out at me.  I've tried being Team iPhone, but dislike that there isn't a removable storage card feature.  However, I do hear that iPhones come with iMovie and most apps are available through Apple before GooglePlay.  Let me know in the comments what your current fave cell phone is and why?


I've been working on putting together a secret blog.  Don't get me wrong, I still love YUMMommy, but at times I feel limited about the list of topics that I can talk about on here.  For now, I'm just working on narrowing down color scheme, overall design, categories and writing posts about things not mommy related.  Right now, I'm not sure if I'll really share it or just let people stumble across it.

What's on your mind this Friday?  Anything new to share?

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November 12, 2015

Thankful Thursday

"Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me."

Happy Thankful Thursday!  We're one more week closer to Thanksgiving and I can hardly wait.  I'm looking forward to spending time with my family, whipping up delicious dishes in the kitchen with Moo and giving thanks for every blessing that has come our way so far this year.

Moo got her report last Friday and I'm thankful to see that she's acing everything.  Of course, I already knew what to expect since we recently had parent-teacher conferences and she was acing everything then.  She finally got to be classroom monitor this week and it's been all she's talked about.  I'm beyond happy and thankful that this year is still going for her.  She's also still enjoying being a bus rider in the afternoons.

I'm grateful that JJ is adjusting to the decrease in his speech therapy session.  Now that he's able to express himself a lot better and form short sentences, there isn't much more that she can teach us.   He's picking up words and phrases fairly quickly.  We just have to work on bettering his pronunciation of certain words, but that will improve as we continue to practice saying those words daily.

I've been having fun doing NaBloPoMo and am grateful that I have been able to post everyday.  I'm also excited with the progress I'm making on NaNoWriMo project as well.  I've met quite a few awesome writers over on the NaNo site.  It feels great to be able to rattle on and on about fictional characters like they're real and not be looked at like I'm lame or crazy.  Plus, seeing strangers getting equally excited about my book and cheering me on has given me more confidence and gives me such a rush of pride in my work.

Overall, this has been a great week and I'm glad.  I felt like everything for falling to pieces a few weeks ago and the walls were caving in.  While they are still a few stresses and fires waiting to be ironed out, I feel refreshed and better equipped mentally to tackle them now.  I hope that you have been a having a great week as well.  Don't forget to check out my latest giveaway and take my 2015 YUMMommy Reader Survey!

What's on your gratitude list this week?

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November 11, 2015

Happy Veteran's Day

These words seems so inadequate to express my gratitude for all of the women and men, moms and dads who have served and continue to service our country, but I'll say them anyway-  THANK YOU!  Thank you for the constant sacrifices you have made to protect not only my freedom, but the freedom of my loved ones and millions of others around the world.  Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Are you a military veteran?  How are you did celebrate the veteran's in your life today?

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November 10, 2015

2015 YUMMommy Reader Survey


With 2016 being less than two months away, I want to make sure that I'm giving you all content that you want to read and find valuable.  Therefore, I created this reader survey to help me give me an idea of what you all want to see around these parts and how often you want to see it.  My goal for 2016 is for us to get to know each other better and to grow together.  That means that there will be a few changes, but I'd love your input beforehand.

This survey is completely anonymous.  I'm not asking for your name or email address.  So, you can be open and honest with your answers.  I'm looking forward to hearing what you have to say.  This survey will close on November 30th at 11:59 PM EST.

Thanks for your feedback!

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