ABC’s of Sleep with Cara of “Taking Cara Babies”

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(First time in her crib! All that stuff was removed before sleeping)

When I was 9 months pregnant I remember telling myself, “Whitney sleep as much as you can right now because when you have Blakely you’re never gonna sleep.” Skip ahead 11 months and my husband was deployed while I still had a baby waking up three or four times a night insisting on being fed and rocked back to sleep. I knew I needed some outside help and I was lucky to find Cara of  Taking Cara Babies

Cara is based out of Arizona, some of you AZ moms may have taken her “Will I Ever Sleep Again?” class that is offered at Modern Milk in Scottsdale. This class is intended for expecting parents and those with babies under 12 weeks. For those of you who do not currently live in Arizona, you can purchase the online version of this class on her website. Since Blakely was already 11 months old, the “Will I Ever Sleep Again?” class didn’t meet our needs.

 

 

Luckily, Cara has created something for babies ( 5-24 months), The ABC’s of Sleep.  Maybe your baby has never been a great sleeper, or you recently traveled and their sleep pattern has changed. Whatever the circumstance is, The ABC’s of Sleep is designed for you. Guys this program is incredible and something that you can fall back on when life happens, so let me break it down for you!

The ABC’s of sleep program helps guide you with a step-by-step plan to help your baby sleep 10-12 hours a night in their crib. Cara will break down how to conquer night sleep, weaning night feedings, and conquering naps.

Below is what you will get with the ABC’s of Sleep program and a few very important tips I’ve learned from Cara along the way!tcb-logo.png

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Every baby is so different! That’s why the ABC’s of Sleep Class comes with a 60 page booklet to help parents make adjustments for their baby. The private Facebook group allows parents to chat and support one another and offer help to one another. And you can always book a phone consult to get personalized help. With this program you will remain actively involved in the process while your little one learns to transition from a dependent sleeper to an independent sleeper. For my husband and I the big issue was tackling “night feedings”, and with Cara’s plan I was able to fully wean Blakely off of night feeding in 10 days. Thanks to Cara, Blakely was sleeping 11- 12 hours a night 2 weeks into the program and continued to take 2 naps a day until she was 18 months old!

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TIP #1

Life Happens….I’ve learned from Cara that lots of things impact your child’s sleep. One of the benefits of having a good sleeper (after we implemented The ABC’s of Sleep Program) is when my baby’s sleep is suddenly disrupted, I know there is a DEEPER issue happening. Below are a few of my favorite blog posts and Instagram posts from Cara I constantly refer back to when life happens.

Blog #1: Day Light Savings Help

Blog#2: Sleep and Sick Season

Instagram #1: Ear infection?

Instagram #2: Who Needs a Nap?

TIP #2

A sound machine is a must have… PERIOD.. END OF STORY!

TIP #3

Bed time routines are incredibly important because it cues your baby’s brain that it’s time for bed. It’s not what you do but how you do it so keep it simple, calm and consistent! Our routine consists of a 10 minute bath, then into her room where the sound machine is already running, we start with lotion and Young Living lavender oil, then PJ’s on while she somehow holds lovey and her bottle, read 2 books and then lights off and into her crib. She rolls around for a few minutes but is usually asleep in 10 minutes with no crying.

TIP #4

Don’t give up.. it’s not to late to get your baby sleeping in their own crib or sleeping in long stretches! My daughter was 11 months old when we implemented Cara’s plan, a plan that was LIFE changing! This blog post doesn’t even do justice to how life changing this class will be for you and your baby.  A healthy sleep foundation for your baby means a better quality of life for you and your family.

WHERE TO FIND Cara of ” Taking Cara Babies “

 

 

 

 

 

Mama Must Haves

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Happy Friday Friends! So excited to bring you some new Mama Must Haves (check out past my last MMH’s guest post), over the past year and a half I have found some products that I absolutely love and can’t go without! I don’t know about you but when I had to register at Buy Buy baby I was so overwhelmed, I had NO clue what was good and what was necessary. So if your feeling that way hopefully this post can give you an idea of some really great products to try out!

**Don’t forget to ENTER the Mama Must Have Giveaway happening on Instagram NOW

  1. Sassy diaper sacks– I literally don’t go anywhere without these little guys. They really help cut the stinky diaper smell, so when your on a airplane and a blow out situation happens you want these in your bag!
  2. Sassy Toys– Great for development with bright colors and bold patterns. These have been some of Blakely’s favorite toys and have kept her busy while out to dinner or on a airplane!
  3. Babyganics products- As most of you know I am a big fan of babyganics (see my previous post).  So I couldn’t do a mama must have without one of my favorites on the list. Their shampoo +body wash is so gentle and fragrance free, we have never had a “shampoo in the eye situation” at our house because it is so gentle!
  4. Lavender oil- Kids sleep support is something that is really important to me.**Be on the look our for a post ALL about sleep with tips from our wonderful sleep specialist, Cara of Taking Cara of babies.**  As of recent I have been using lavender oil on her feet, I dilute it in a couple drops of coconut oil. You don’t have to dilute it from what Young Living’s website. It states you can apply 2–4 drops directly to desired area and that dilution is not required, but I do dilute when I put it on Blakely. I don’t sell Young Living I just buy it, but if you are interested in learning more about oils in general check out Joys_Journey on Instagram and direct message her! She is a guru on oils and can walk you through the entire process!
  5.  Bumkins Silicone Grip Dish   this is the best grip dish I have found! Once stuck down it’s not moving, only mama can get that back up! When I was registering I put down the trendy and more expensive EZPZ mat, but Blakely easily moved this tray around and it made a mess. Don’t ask me why but the Bumkins dish truly works and it is cheaper, doesn’t get much better than that!
  6. Birth Annoucement– So the last mama must have is truly for “mama” more than for baby. I think it’s so special to have a birth announcement for your little one that is unique and tailored to your baby.  I was blessed to have my best friend Alexandra of Fleurish Letters +Design create this incredible birth announcement for my daughter.  She illustrates everything by hand and it’s written in beautiful hand lettering. It’s definitely a wonderful keepsake, something that I will always treasure! Enter the giveaway for a chance to choose from the many theme announcements that are available. FIND FLEURISH LETTERS  + DESIGN ON:

     

Happy National Coffee Day

In honor of national coffee day today, Blakely and I went to our favorite coffee shop in Northpark. Communal coffee is a super fun and trendy coffee shop, that has definitely become a hot spot for social media addicts to visit while in San Diego. I mean who wouldn’t want a picture on next to their amazing Coffee + Flowers wall! Why Coffee +Flowers, well communal coffee is a joint store with the Native Poppy flower shop! So the store is filled with the aroma of coffee and flowers, it doesn’t get much better than that! While the ambience is amazing the menu is out of this world. Lavender honey latte, vanilla bean latte, and rose vanilla latte the list goes on and on.

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Before you leave make sure to make a pit stop next door to North Park Nursery (Miss Blakely’s favorite spot) . North Park Nursery is a locally owned nursery and garden center, which is filled with incredible succulents, garden supplies, gifts! unnamed-5.jpgunnamed-6.jpg

3 BABYGANICS Products You Should Be Using

A clean house is a must for our family. I do my best to always use baby-safe products, when I’m cleaning I never want to question could this be safe for Blakely. When Blakely was born I didn’t know what products to use, there are just so many out there! But I was won over by Babyganics because their products are formulated with plant-based, natural and certified organic ingredients. Recently, Babyganics sent me some their fabulous products to try, some of these I already use daily and others were new to me. So today I’m excited to share 3 of my favorite Babyganics products. Using these products give me peace of mind that I am using good and gentle cleaning products in our house.

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Product 1: Babyganics Mineral Based Baby Sunscreen Lotion

This has been my go to sunscreen since Blakely was born. I love it because the ingredients are way more natural than other sunscreens, it’s non-allergenic and tear free.When you have a one year old who won’t sit still while putting on sunscreen an effortless application is a MUST! So I love how Babyganics applies, it rubs in the skin right away, has no strange sunscreen smell!

Product 2: Babyganics Face and Hand Wipes

The day these Babyganics goodies arrived at our door, Blakely had come down with her second cold ever. There were a lot of boogers and sneezes happening at our house, the face and hand wipes came in so handy that week. They are super gentle wipes, Blakely did not have any redness around her nose the entire cold. These wipes are very hydrating and they are unscented (unlike some other boogie wipes out there)!unnamed.jpg

Product 3: Babyganics Foaming Dish & Bottle Soap

It’s crazy how fast bottles add up in the sink. Every mom knows the faster the bottles can get cleaned and rinsed the better! Foam soap is great because there is alway less rinsing aka less water used, this soap takes off the residue and 100% gets rid of the stinky smell of formula.

If you love Babyganics products too… DON’T FORGET to enter our giveaway over on Instagram. You have until midnight Thursday, September 21st to enter, the winner will be announced on Friday.

What are your favorite Babyganics products?

Check out Babyganics on: Facebook | Instagram | Pinterest | Twitter

**This post was sponsored by Babyganics,

Ulta’s 21 Days Of Beauty is here

Most of you know how much I love beauty products from my monthly beauty budget picks post. It doesn’t get much better than Ulta’s Beauty’s 21 Days of Beauty sale starting September 3! Guys, this is big news — a new sale every day with up to 50 percent off of must have products like Naked, Becca and Tarte. Prepare yourself cause your gonna want to buy something from each day. Check out the calendar below and don’t you worry I’ve narrowed it down to my top SEVEN must have picks. Let’s get shopping……

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SEPT 4: Buxom Plump line Lip Liner  is a must have because it is an all-in-one plumping lip liner that has a nice built-in brush to help define, contour and fill lips. UGH I am obsessed with BUXOM.. and they are marked down to $8.50

SEPT 6: TARTE The Lip Sculptor Doubled Ended Lipstick &Gloss  is only $10.00 for two in one lipstick and a gloss. For me that is a must try!!

SEPT 12: Peter Thomas Roth Anti-Aging Cleansing Gel $19 If you haven’t tried Peter Thomas Roth products you need to jump on the bandwagon. This cleansing gel is said to help resurface the skin and support natural cell turnover. At 30 years old this is the type of cleanser I need because it will help diminish the appearance of these fine lines and wrinkles!

SEPT 14: Lorac TANtalizer Buildable Bronzing Powder Online Only  is cut down to $16.00. I’m a sucker for a good bronzer and bronzer is build-able (YES!) highly pigmented (double YES!)…can’t wait to try this one!

SEPT 17:Becca Under Eye Brightening Corrector  50% off and is only $15.00. OMG one of my favorite products of all time!  This truly has come in handy as a new mom, it really minimizes under eye darkness by brightening and evening skin tone. If you love that glowing look, make sure to snag one of these on Sept 17th!

SEPT 21: Laura Geller Balance-n-Brighten Baked Color Correcting Foundation $16.50 I have not tried this before but I am always looking to try anything color correcting. During pregnancy I was blessed to get hyperpigmentation known as melasma. So any product that helps color correct I will try!

SEPT 23 Mario Badescu Vitamin C Serum $22.50 Vitamin C is not only the great for your immune system but its wonderful for your face too. It is known to help with melasma *pregnancy mask* by a helping to brighten uneven skin tones while diminishing the look of fine lines and discoloration.

 

 

How I got my body back with FIT4Mom

 

So as most of you know I am huge fan of at home workouts. Doing workout videos is how I lost the initial baby weight and it gave me some of my initial tone back. After awhile it was getting harder and harder to squeeze in a really good workout during Blakely’s morning nap, thats is when I found FIT4MOM Chula Vista. It was through FIT4MOM  that I got my true body back, I am more toned and lighter than I have ever been! FIT4MOM is an incredible fitness group for moms who don’t want to leave their babe(s) behind at a gym daycare. At FIT4MOM you will find a community of women who are all there to support one another, have some fun and get fit. I love that their workouts have a level for the novice and a level for workout veterans. You can alway count on instructors to give you different options to fit your fitness level. Here is what you can expect when you attend your first class. We always start in a circle and introduce ourselves while warming up. We then leave the park and go to 2-or 3 different stations. At those stations we might do strength training with bands or some cardio activities.  FIT4MOM is more than just fitness to me, I have found an amazing community of strong women and some incredible friendships. It has given me the support system I needed as a new mom, and it has helped me find strength in myself and in motherhood. If your interested in knowing more about FIT4MOM Chula Vista  or another FIT4MOM  around the country please contact ambercarroll@fit4mom.com , she will connect you with the correct franchisee for your area!

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Life With A 15 Month Old

Processed with VSCO with a5 presetProcessed with VSCO with a5 presetSO many people said to me before Blakely was born, treasure every moment, every stage, every second. At that time I was like yes.. I know I will. I heard them say it but you don’t realize it until it has already happened that OMG my baby is already 15 months old. I now think about about all those times I wish I could have froze in time. If only we could! I will be the first to admit lately I know I cannot stop time, but I have been making an effort to slow down my days and learn how to treasure even the crazy moments Blakely and I have together.

Around 14 going on 15month I noticed big changes in Blakely. It was like “OK I am here I have arrived in the world, and I am ready to share all my feelings with you Mom and Dad.” We really saw her independence start to develop, she went form helpless in ways to independent. And yes… as a result we started to see extreme swings and “not so good” behavior. We really had to have a “Come to Jesus” moment and realize that the behavior often happens because she think she has the world figured out but she doesn’t yet and her getting frustrated about that is all apart of her developing her identity.

The next big change that is happening as we speak is the transition from two naps to one. I am proud to say we are still doing two naps (most days) thanks to the plan we got from Cara sleep expert from Taking Cara babies (which I am hoping to do a post coming up telling you our experience using her). My major take away from sleep and a 15 month old is having a plan/routine (from birth) and sticking to it. Once we got on the plan from Cara, Blakely gets all rest she needs to make her and me happier throughout the day.  I am dreading the day of having to FULLY transition down to one nap but we can do it!

The other difference that has happened is just how active my little B has become, obviously I knew that this is going happen so each day we try to get outside and do an activity. Three days a week we go to FIT4MOM workout group and other days I try to have a play date or we go to the park to feed the ducks. This summer she has loved playing in this inflatable pool or playing with chalk and bubbles(the hurricane is awesome). Oh the bubbles…. I never thought I would see this many bubbles. BUT it is so much fun being with her and watching her enjoy life and explore the world. What are some of your favorite activities to do with your toddler, let me know in the comments below.