Five Relaxation Techniques and Healing Butterfly Matcha Tea Review

I was recently given the opportunity to review Healing Butterfly’s amazing matcha teas, and I love them SO MUCH I want to share them with you! They also got me thinking, I could use a few more relaxation techniques in my daily routine! So, I tried a few and want to share my favorites with you in this post as well as why I love Healing Butterfly’s truly incredible teas! Click here to read their personal story and click here to read their wonderful vision! Read on for why I love them so much, the teas I tried and a few of my favorite relaxation techniques! They also gave me a special discount code just for you! Use code MAMAPLAYBOOK15 for a discount on your first order at Healing Butterfly!

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5 Easy Tips for Supporting Lactation and Boosting Milk Supply

I would like to start this post by stating that I am not a trained lactation consultant. I am a mama who breastfed twins for nearly three years, donated over 13 gallons of milk while breastfeeding them and am currently breastfeeding my six month old son as well as donating milk on a weekly basis. These are simply tips that have helped (and continue to help!) me in my breastfeeding journey. Lastly, any companies I share in this post were carefully chosen by ME for what they stand for and the effects their products have had in my life personally.

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#powerinpostpartum

I share this story in complete vulnerability, in the hopes that even just one mama who is in the position I was, can read it and it will help. Sharing things like this on social media can be terrifying, people can be so mean. But I am willing to take that risk in the hopes that my postpartum story might help someone else’s be an easier one. I was NOT okay after the births of my beloved babies, and I know I am not the only one in this world who has experienced this. I am sharing this story, because, my life is now completely different, and I pray that in sharing this someone else may not have to struggle as long as I did, or can stop struggling and see the sunshine again. You don’t need to feel ashamed, IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT. Yes, I believe with all my heart in holistic healing but I ALSO believe the shroud covering postpartum mental health and medication needs to be lifted. Was how I felt exacerbated by my circumstances? Probably. Could I have avoided this with proper supplements and better self-care? Maybe. And I will try again with each baby I may bave in the future. And no, I am not suggesting Prozac as a cure-all for every mom. But the point is, we don’t have to suffer. I’m a Christian, and let me tell you needing some help does NOT mean I don’t love Jesus. We aren’t being heroes by not seeking help. We deserve better, our babies deserve better, we both deserve for us to be functioning, and at our best. No, I am not a robot mom now. Yes, I still get frustrated and things make me sad. BUT, I am now able to manage the highs and lows and once again truly enjoy this precious time with my children. Now for my story:

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Maintaining Joy in Parenting When Your Cup is Empty

I personally feel that, in motherhood, some seasons are more difficult than others. It’s been one of those for me lately as it’s been a little crazier at our house than usual. My husband is preparing for the biggest exam yet of his medical career and is literally studying 14-16 hours a day. I deliver food to his office door, and I honestly don’t know how he does it. His brain is amazing. Anyway, we don’t see him much/hardly at all. I’ve been going through a bit of postpartum overwhelm, my children are incredibly high energy and if I’m being completely honest, I haven’t been the mother I want to be lately. At all. My children are truly my world,the much desired beloved joys of my heart, and nothing hurts me more than feeling that I am failing in being the mother I want to be for them.

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When your inner Mama Bear comes out/don’t treat my kids differently due to your gender bias

I have realized lately that having children has definitely changed me, one area being my ability to deal with confrontation when necessary. But, this post is really about an experience we had recently due to the fact my children are not all the same gender. So, the twins had their first dance class this week. We’ve done gymnastics mommy and me classes but this was their first “real” class experience. They’ve been over the moon excited, and I found it’s a bit more difficult to find dance gear for toddler boys, which is ridiculous, I mean, boys dance too. Hello, heard of Mikhail Baryshnikov?! Anyway, they have both literally been counting down the days until class started.

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Five Easy Ways I make Myself Feel like I Have it all together every day (even when I totally don’t)

One of my biggest parenting lessons as a previous control freak has been you simply cannot control everything all the time when you have children. That being said, I do like to have a semblance of order and peace every day, for me it helps me keep my sanity and thus help me be a better mama. I can’t always keep the bathroom spotless and I can’t always have all the laundry put away (ok, maybe ever on that one hahaha!) but I have found a few easy, doable daily things that help me feel better about everything. I call them my daily sanity savers! These may not be your five things, but if you don’t have them already, I hope they can at least help you maybe find five things that help YOU feel on top of it all, even when you have tiny humans using you as a jungle gym and your house resembles a disco with the world’s tiniest ravers alive. And please share below I would love to hear what yours are!

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The Birth Story of Charlie Adam Lloyd

First of all, I want to give credit to my wonderful sister, Hayley, for photographing Charlie’s birth. It was no easy task in our cramped, tight and very dark little room, but it means the world to me to have Charlie’s birth documented, both in photos and videos. Working in such a dark room is nearly impossible for photography, but the twins were born under fluorescent lights and I was SO grateful for the dim calm this time! She also photographed the twins birth, (as much of it as she was permitted to at the hospital!) and I am eternally grateful for her love and labors at both events. She even hung in there when it got super gnarly, bless her brave heart.

I will admit to feeling quite vulnerable in sharing all of this, but, being able to read other’s birth stories and see their photos and videos gave me such strength before both of my births, and I am sharing our story in the hope that I can do that for someone else.

Watch Charlie’s birth story video here, and scroll down to read it <3

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Easiest DIY Toddler Bunk Bed (no sawing or additional tools required!)

Allow me to preface this with the statement that I am not an architect, nor am I a DIY expert, just a mom on a mission, so please feel free to ask for clarification on construction for this bed! 🙂

Ever since the twins were born, we’ve been a cosleeping family, and loved it. Many things contributed to that decision, not in the least of all which was space. (When you have one bedroom you do what you gotta do!) When our queen bed got too small we purchased a twin bed off of Amazon and sidled it up next to the queen mattress to make one bigger bed. When we found out we were pregnant with Charlie, I started making plans to transition them into their own beds as part of our home renovation. Well, the renovation took longer than expected (don’t they all) and suddenly Charlie was here and the only progress I had made was to remove the extra twin mattress and in its place put some toddler mattresses on our bedroom floor, so essentially we were all in the same bed still, it was just a LOT smaller!

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How We Potty Trained Pain Free

**as always, my parenting posts are simply my sharing what has worked for my family in the hopes that it can help yours. I am not a parenting expert by any means, I am simply learning as I go (as aren’t we all!)**

So first of all, I’ll admit straight up, the concept of potty training terrified me from the beginning. It just seemed, so, HARD! And stressful! And messy! And nebulous! For me and my littles! But I felt like there had to be a better way, and what I would like to propose in this post is, I believe there is. I took a rather non-conventional potty training approach with my little ones and it worked absolutely beautifully for us. It wasn’t hard, it wasn’t messy, it was so, NATURAL. And honestly, it wasn’t training. I just let them take the lead and they did it themselves. And, dare I say, it was so EASY. It really was. It was so so easy. When my son was barely over a year old, he suddenly started refusing to poop. It was seriously stressful and traumatizing for both of us. On a whim, I got a little potty hoping that perhaps the only issue was he didn’t want to mess his diaper. Lo and behold, he pooped on the potty that day and we never had another issue (or another single poopy diaper from him!).

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How we kicked the screentime habit in under a week

Let me preface this by saying three things: one, I am not a parenting expert. I simply love to share what has worked (or not!) for my family and hope others may benefit. Secondly, I do not believe that all screen time is all bad all the time. Thirdly, there are seasons of life and I believe some of those seasons will benefit from more screen time than others. I had been having that type of season, twin toddlers, very pregnant, and doing a major home renovation project. When we were in the thick of drywalling and it came down to my kids potentially eating drywall compound or watching more PJ Masks than I would preferably want them to, let me tell you what I chose….(hint…it didn’t involve a call to the poison control hotline).

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