What do You Value as a Parent? New & Improved Luvs & a $25 Gift Card & Diaper Giveaway #WhatULuv #ad
This review was made possible by iConnect and Luvs. I was provided compensation to facilitate this post, but all opinions stated are 100% mine.
Parenthood is an amazing journey of ups and downs and everything in between, but as an experienced mother of four, I try to take it all in stride. I value the things that make my life a little easier - from my close friends who are always there for me to great products that work well at affordable prices (like Luvs). With four kids, we have used a lot of Luvs in our house and they are good diapers for a reasonable price. I know I can trust Luvs to do a good job and save us money too.
Luvs just introduced the new and improved Luvs Ultra Leakguard Diapers with NightLock Plus™. These new and improved diapers even come with a money back guarantee.
Luvs surveyed Moms across the country to find out what they value most and this is what they found out.
I can so relate to sleeping through the night. It will be awhile since my baby is only 8 weeks old. I got 5 solid hours a couple of nights ago and it was amazing. Also, I so enjoy my "grown-up" shows on Masterpiece theatre, but rarely have "me time" to watch them. Showering uninterrupted, sleeping through the night, watching "grown-up" shows... these are all at the top of my wish list! What would you "luv" to do with some free time?
Luvs is offering a great money-saving deal with a $1 print-at-home coupon off any one diaper pack. Print this coupon and use it at any mass, discount or grocery stores where Luvs Diapers are sold.
Enter to win a $25 AmEx gift card and a pack of the new Luvs NightLock Diapers!
Want to win even bigger? Join the twitter party to win a $300 AMEX Gift Card+ Luvs product!
Luvs is on a mission to celebrate and embrace what experienced parents value and “Luv” every single day. Be sure to join the #WhatULuv Twitter party hosted by @iConnect and @Luvs, on November 29th, 9-10pm EST to share what you value as a parent.
We love Slow Cooker Spaghetti & Meatballs. This recipe has been on the blog since 2012 so when I made this for dinner the other night, I decided it was time for some new photos to liven it up a bit. I didn't even have a pinnable photo on the post (gasp) and knew nothing about food photography way back then so it was time.
Even though you all have Thanksgiving on the mind ( I do too), this is a great recipe to stash away for after the holiday. You can throw this together in about half an hour, cook on low all day, then enjoy hearty, delicious, warming Spaghetti and Meatballs for dinner. Busy night, no worries...you've got the most amazing sauce and meatballs slowly simmering in your kitchen.
You will love this Spaghetti and Meatballs. The sauce is exceptional with red wine enhancing the rich flavor. And since it simmers in the slow cooker, all you have to do at dinner time is cook some spaghetti noodles and make a salad. And if you have extra time, make a batch of bread machine bread sticks or bread machine breadsticks without a bread machine. They are amazing and better than any we have had in a restaurant.
SAUCE & SPAGHETTI
If you are into food photography and need some help improving your food styling and photography skills, I cannot recommend Tasty Food Photography (affiliate link below) enough. I learned a wealth of knowledge from this ebook. See my old post photo from 2012 compared to my new photos. Update: this new photo was accepted by foodgawker!
Disclosure: This is a sponsored post and I also received products for review. All opinions are honest and are my own.
We are so blessed to have a beautiful, healthy six week old son. In fact, he is our fourth son. We have a lot to be thankful for.
Being that this is our fourth time around, some things are easier, but others are harder. Breastfeeding is easier and feels more natural than it did with my first child. Leaving the house is easier. I am just used to having lots of kids with me where ever I go and have learned a few things over the years to make outings as peaceful and productive as possible. (There are sibling fights and meltdowns on occasion, but for the most part, things run pretty smoothly on our outings.) I remember when I had my second child. I was so apprehensive about leaving the house alone with both children. But by the time I had my third son, it was no big deal.
I think the hardest thing about being a mother of four including a newborn is that I feel exhausted and stretched thin. I want and need to spend time with each child and try to on a regular basis, but it is exhausting. Thankfully, my husband is super involved and does a lot with our children. From boardgames to football in the backyard, he plays with them almost everyday and helps the older boys with their homework.
Then there are meals to prepare and tons of laundry. (Our lazyboy is currently home to a big pile of clean laundry.) I am not complaining, I think parenting is the most rewarding job in the world. But it is a sacrifice of time, energy and money so when a newborn comes along, I say take all the help you can get.
Check out my middle of the night selfies when I was up with my little man.
5 Tips for Surviving the First Weeks of Motherhood
1. Prepare ahead of time as much as possible. Stock up on things you know you will need such as diapers, wipes, laundry detergent, paper plates (make life easier), paper towels, toilet paper, feminine pads, breast pads (if nursing), etc. The last thing you want to do is run out of any necessities when you are home with a newborn.
2. Prepare or purchase some easy meals that can be frozen and heated later or are shelf stable easy mixes or kits. You probably won't have much time to deal with cooking after baby comes and that frozen lasagna will look real good when all you have to do is heat it up. Here are some simple recipes that can be prepared ahead and frozen.
Baked Penne Casserole
Frito Chili Pie (Cook then freeze Chili to warm up later)
Easy Enchiladas (Freeze, then thaw and bake later)
3. Take it all in stride. Your house will not be perfect or anything close to perfect for a long time. And that's ok, you have more important things to do right now. You will be late sometimes and that's ok too. There will be blow out diapers, you will be peed on or spit up on all right before you leave the house. Sometimes you will feel like you have everything under control and somehow you will still be late. In my experience, people are kind and give you a break when you have a newborn. They understand and know that you are doing your best.
4. Be prepared when leaving the house. Take a moment and check the diaper bag a few times a week. Make sure to have extra diapers, wipes, extra baby clothes that are appropriate for the weather conditions, nursing cover (if using), baby blanket, changing pad, bottles and formula or pumped milk (if using), pacifier, burp cloth, bag for wet soiled clothes or cloth diapers, snacks and activities/small toys for older children, and a few things for yourself. Taking care of and nursing an infant takes a lot of energy so Mom needs a few things too. Make sure to have water or another healthy hydrating beverage like Mother Nurture Enhanced Water. I find that when I am nursing, I am always thirsty and have to take drinks with me wherever I go. Take some of your favorite snacks too. Stash a few granola bars, an apple, banana, Mother Nurture Chocolate Truffles, etc. in your bag. You will get hungry too and will be glad to have something healthy and convenient with you.
5. Accept help. This can be hard to do, but realize that you can't do it all, plus you need to rest and bond with your baby as much as possible. Let your parents and in-laws camp out for a week or two. Their help is invaluable, especially if you have older children. Let them make dinner, do laundry, and take the kids to school. You need sleep and they are happy to help and spend time with their grandchildren. If your friends, church, or co-workers offer to give you a meal train, take it. You will find relief in knowing that a home-cooked meal is being delivered a few times a week for the duration of the meal train. We are receiving a meal train from church for a couple of months and it is a God send. It is such a relief knowing that I don't have to plan and prepare meals throughout the week. Some nights I am so busy with the baby that if it weren't for the meal train, we would be eating cereal or peanut butter sandwiches.
Here I am enjoying Mother Nurture Enhanced Water when up nursing in the middle of the night. Remember, you want to stay hydrated. I tried the tropical splash flavor which was deliciously refreshing. It is slightly sweet, but not too sweet with a delicate citrus flavor. I enjoyed Mother Nurture Enhanced Water and would love to try the other flavors. It also comes in pink grapefruit and mixed berry. Mother Nurture Enhanced Waters provide essential nutrients including Folic Acid, Calcium, Vitamin B12 and Choline that both moms and babies need.
It might be because I am nursing, but I find that I am always hungry and have to snack throughout the day. Nursing mothers do need an additional 500 calories and healthy snacks are a good way to make sure I am meeting this need. I love these delicious Mother Nurture Chocolate Truffles. I always crave chocolate and can feel better about eating these since they contain DHA, folic acid, calcium and protein. They come in two delicious flavors, milk chocolate and dark chocolate raspberry.
Please share your tips for surviving the first weeks of motherhood. We are all in this together!
I have been wanting to update this post with new and improved photos for at least a month and set a goal of doing this before Halloween. But, reality is ... I am snuggling, nursing, diapering, and loving our newborn son and sometimes, make that most of the time, any spare minutes are better used sneaking in a quick nap.
I am way better at posting pictures on instagram than to any other social media sites so if you want to see our baby boy, you can see pics here.
So the good thing about this recipe as with most cookie dough recipes, is you can refrigerate or freeze the dough. So if you make the dough and then (like me) don't have to time to bake it for say 3 or 4 days, you can refrigerate or freeze it and then bake it later when you have time. This might be how most of my fall baking goes, if at all.
These aren't difficult to make, I just have a busier life than normal right now with a newborn. My students used to make these in my foods classes and they always loved them. And that was before I knew about the merits of browned butter icing and how it takes these cookies from really good to rock your world amazing!
To make browned butter, you simply melt the butter on the stovetop until it turns a light brown color and smells fragrant with a caramely slightly nutty scent. The cookies are not that sweet on their own so the sweet caramely buttery icing compliments them well.
Enjoy these perfect little fall confectionary gems!
1 cup sugar
1 cup canned pumpkin
1/2 cup (1 stick) butter, softened
1 Tbsp. grated orange peel
Mix in next:
2 cups flour
1 tsp. baking powder
1 tsp. baking soda
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. salt
Drop by rounded tablespoons onto parchment lined cookie sheet. Bake in 375 degree F oven for 8 to 11 minutes. Let cool, then glaze tops of cookies.
Browned Butter Glaze:
1/2 cup butter
2 cups powdered sugar
1 tsp. vanilla
1 to 2 Tbsp. milk
Heat butter on stove over medium heat until browned. You will smell a caramely, slightly nutty scent when it is ready. Stir in powdered sugar and vanilla, then milk until smooth.
Glaze cookies after they have cooled a few minutes. Top each cookie with a pecan.
The glaze will harden quickly, so don’t make the glaze until after all of the cookies have baked.
Makes about 2 dozen cookies.
Linking up at Lou Lou Girls, Inspire Me Monday, Share the Wealth, Dream, Create, Inspire
Welcome to Home Ec @ Home
Hi, I'm Faith, a former Family and Consumer Science (Home Economics) Teacher turned work at home Mom, bringing you family friendly, homemade recipes and homemaking tips to simplify your life. Join me on my homemaking and mothering journey.
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