Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Took some pictures of Gracie in her Nursery with Daddy and I

I know I am bias, but I just think all 5 of my kids are gorgeous!



Cameron went to the Dr. and new pics of the boys :)

This morning we had an appointment for Cameron to go to the Dr. AGAIN for his eczema. This poor kid is ALWAYS broken out and nothing they give us for it works. I've been trying to get a referral to an allergist and a dermatologist for a couple of years now and he FINALLY got a referral today! It's about time! Sometimes you literally have to jump through hoops to get a referral or other things covered. As a matter of fact my husband is still waiting for Tricare to approve the surgery for the veinous reflux in his leg... still... waiting. Now lets see how long it actually takes for the referral to get in the system and then how long the waiting list for the Allergist and Dermatologist is. Joy.

After the Dr. appointment 3 of the 4 boys got a haircut (we're growing out Wyatt's curls <3). I took pictures of them of course!








Saturday, April 24, 2010

Ecostore USA product review

I've had a chance to try out the ecostore USA products I ordered on a few of my kids during this past week.


http://www.ecostoreusa.com/

I had been looking at these products online and debating whether to try them or not for a while now. They were/are doubling all orders for earth month and orders over $25 have free shipping. That was enough of a draw for me to finally try them out.

I ordered baby shampoo, baby body wash, baby massage oil and coconut soap for myself. They did in fact double everything and actually tripled my soap order!

I smelled everything first of course to make sure the scent of each item was appealing to me. I was very pleased with the smell of the baby items. They have a very nice pleasant natural smell. Strong enough to smell it, but not overpowering at all.

During each bath I found that a little goes a long way with both the shampoo and body wash. That is wonderful, especially if you're trying to be money conscious.

The massage oil is great. It made the babies skin feel amazing. She already has soft skin of course, but it feels even softer now. The oil also, goes a long way. The massage oil absorbs well and does not leave a lasting greasy feeling like other baby oil products. It was even less greasy than many lotions, in fact. That was a huge plus to me.

None of the products had any negative effect on my children's extremely sensitive skin. I feel that this has been the best bath and body product I've used on them so far. I've definitely been converted from California Baby. Overall I'm very pleased with their baby products and will continue to use them until something better comes along.



On to the coconut soap. I have used it for every shower this week and I don't have anything bad to say about it. I can't rave about it, because it hasn't made any noticeable change in my skin, but it also has not caused any reactions like I have to most skin products. It smells like you would expect with it being coconut soap. It is not quite as exfoliating as I expected. It's actually not really exfoliating at all in my opinion. Overall I'm satisfied with it, but I do not know if I'll be a long time user of this product for myself.


This brand is a little pricey, but it is chemical free and high quality, so I consider it worth the money.

Yes, you can!

I always hear people say you can't keep a clean house with kids. I usually hear people with only 1 or 2 say this too, which I find interesting. You really can though. It all comes down to how high on your priority list having a clean house is. If it's not a high priority to you, then that's great, if it is, that's great too. I have 5 kids and 2 dogs I take care of on a daily basis, as well as a husband who thinks that cleaning is the root of all evil along with homeschooling my oldest 2 and doing work here and there on my little online store. I still manage to keep a clean and mostly organized house. I'm not super woman, I'm not any better than any other mom or dad, I'm just set on having things a certain way and juggling it all the best I can.

There are certain things I do every single day and there are others I do throughout the week. Downstairs I clean the kitchen and vacuum every single day. The dogs live downstairs and I do NOT want fur around my house. The kids also make a mess at each meal in the kitchen. I dust probably 3 times a week. I split up dusting downstairs and upstairs over the days during the week. I clean the bathroom downstairs daily and the master bathroom a few times a week. The boys bathroom is also cleaned a few times a week. I do laundry as it needs to be done whether it's daily or a few times a week (other than the cloth diapers which I do a load of each evening)... I could go on and on, but what it all comes down to is balancing everything out. I homeschool the boys and make time to give each one of the kids individual attention. We go to the park, we play outside, we play games inside... I try to keep a healthy balance for ALL of it. I absolutely feel overwhelmed some days, especially when I am doing it all without help. I just pull myself back together and push on. But, like I said, You CAN do it. If I can pull it off, I think anyone can.

This reminds me... I need to go check on the cloth diapers in the dryer!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Baeba babycook Review

Being the busy mom of 5 that I am... I've decided I'll give reviews on new products I try.

Today I tried out our new Baeba babcook. For those who don't know, this is a baby food maker. I decided I wanted to get one and give it a try because it's an all in 1 machine, so less to clean. Who doesn't want less to clean? Especially with 5 kids, right?

Upon opening the box and taking a look at the machine, it's small, which I personally like. It was very easy to clean in preparation to use. The instruction for the machine are very simple. It's very easy to use and operate. Because it is small, I did have to use it twice to cook and puree a very large sweet potato. I don't mind though because the machine is really easy to use and in my opinion pretty convenient. The only complaint I have is it takes a little longer to puree than I think it should, but it does get the job done. Overall I'm very happy with this purchase and will definitely be using it regularly to make all of Gracie's baby food :). I give it 4.5 out of 5 stars.

I was able to get about 8 servings (roughly the amount of a 2nd stage baby food jar) out of the large sweet potato I had. That's some pretty good savings right there!








Monday, April 19, 2010

Lots of Updating!


Whew! I've been busy! I have lots of updating to do!

Well... Since my last blog update I started a little online business (http://www.etsy.com/shop/AnnabellasDesigns). It's a little slow, but I have some really great customers who have made several purchases and I am so thankful for them! I make hair accessories for babies, girls and adults! I was sick of paying too much for headbands that lacked in quality for Gracie, so I started making them myself and decided to start making them for other people too! Being the picky, meticulous, pays CLOSE attention to detail person that I am... I think mine are a lot better than what I was buying by leaps and bounds (and I'm not just saying that because I make them! I'm also very competitively priced. So that has kept me quite busy the past couple of months!

The kids are growing like weeds! It's just ridiculous. Gracie started crawling right at 5 months. The funny kind of crawl, but getting around nonetheless. This little girl is going to give me a run for my money, I tell you. Alex's reading has just completely exploded. His fluency has picked up a great deal and now he reads everything, everywhere we go. I don't have to force him to read anymore! I'm so thankful it has finally clicked with him. Cameron is already doing Kindergarten work even though he isn't technically in K until this coming school year. He's doing quite well. Wyatt... oh Wyatt... he is such a smart, sweet caring little boy. But, he's still going through this phase where he "doesn't like dinner" before he even knows what was made. It's driving me crazy. Zayne is started to talk so much! He's a little dare-devil too! I've found him on more than one occasion up on Wyatt's bunk bed and it scares the crap out of me! Their bedroom is too small to separate the bunk beds into 2 twins, so he's definitely going to be sleeping in the play yard at night until he's climbing out of it! Hah! I don't want him climbing up on Wyatt's bed at night or something and falling. They all sure like to keep me on my toes.


Tony started a little project yesterday. He's building a small deck beside the patio. He already has it more than halfway done. He's just working on the railing now. Hopefully he'll be out of work early enough today to finish that! I think we may put railing around the patio itself also to make it look nicer. I can tell he enjoys doing those types of things. I'm glad, I'd rather see him out there doing that than sitting on his computer every waking moment like he usually does.


I have decided to start cloth diapering Gracie full time. I've been wanting to for a LONG time, since before we had Zayne, but Tony hates the idea. I finally decided I'm doing it whether he likes it or not. I'll be changing her and washing the diapers/cloth wipes anyway. I wont be doing it full time for Zayne just because hopefully he'll be out of diapers in less than a year and it wont be cost effective at this rate for him. I already use all natural and organic wash, laundry detergent etc. I use as little chemical cleaners in my house as possible and I make every effort to feed the kids healthy. I breastfeed Gracie exclusively and will be making all of her baby food. With all that... why do I want them is disposable diapers??? I DON'T and I'm not letting my husband discourage me now lol. This week everything will be here for me to be completely CD'ing her. I'm very excited! I ordered 2 pocket diapers of a brand I have not tried before, Blueberry. I have had a few people tell me they liked them though, so we'll see! One of them is minky and adorable too! hehe. I actually have a few new things I'll be trying out this week, so I'll be sure to give some reviews on them. Ecostore, Blueberry CD's, Lil Outlaws detergent and a Sigma diaper sprayer for the toilet. I'll even give a review on Rumparooz now that I'll be using them full time (even though I've used them before and LOVE them).

I'll end this was some recent pictures of the kids <3








The one completely cracked me up! LOL
This boys is something else lol.