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Biokleen Review

About a week ago I received three Biokleen products from winning a giveaway on Instagram. They are plant-based products, non-toxic to the environment/household, and family owned! I was super estatic to receive these products, especially the Bac-out spray because we have two dogs that love to make messes..

We’ve used Bac-out about 3x during the past week already. I love the smell, the ingredients, and it’s a very effective cleaner for pet accidents (mostly puke and #2).  I have yet to use it on the couch, but that’ll be the next step to remove some pet odor and stains. I definitely need to order their multi-surface cleaner version!

I’ve used the Laundry Liquid on three loads of laundry, and compared to the current laundry detergent I was using, I would have to say it’s better. Not all plant-based or “free and clear” products I’ve used in the past have actually worked, so I was thrilled when my son’s clothes came out cleaner. Once again, the smell is amazing and I love that it’s packaged in 100% recycled cardboard and newspaper! Another great thing I want to mention about this product is that you don’t have to use much, a little goes a long way!

Lastly, I finally tried the Oxygen Bleach Plus today with some of J’s old baby onesies to get the stains out. I was slightly disappointed at first after using the product for five minutes then rinsing it out like the directions stated, I could still see the stains on the clothes. Once I got them out of the washer (washed with the Biokleen laundry liquid), I noticed right away that the stains from one of the onesies was completely gone! Yes, it got a stain out from 3 years ago! I’ve added pictures below from the before and after of the onesies. The other onesie’s stain is lighter, but not completely gone. I didn’t have many expectations since i’ve tried bleach alternatives, and eco-friendly products to get these stains out. Considering the stains are so old, i’m assuming the Oxygen Bleach Plus would do quite well and completely remove fresh stains.
Don’t forget to check them out at the link below!!
Before:
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After:

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Biokleen

Adventuring Goat Yoga

Coming from Iowa, and having two parents who grew up on farms I never could have imagined I would be saying that I participated in something called “Goat Yoga”. By the end of our parent-child goat yoga class, my three year old who has always been afraid of animals, was feeding, petting them and telling me he wanted to stay a little bit longer.

The class started off with some basic yoga poses, sun salutations and getting the kids (both animals and humans) warmed up to one another. As much as I love yoga, it was hard to put down my phone and stop taking pictures of how comfortable and adventurous the goats were around us. After warming up, the children moved over to a mini-obstacle course, which is right up Jax’s ally, with nearly 3 years of gymnastics under his belt. I would definitely have to say that might have been his favorite part. The obstacle course included crossing the beam, climbing over a tractor tire, up a mini-wall, and jumping on trampolines with the goats. Some of the goats even climbed on the wall and jumped with the kids!
After a few runs through the course, the kids were invited over to have some parachute fun. No matter what age kids are, they love parachutes games and singing! The goats participated in the fun running under the parachute watching the colorful rainbow go up and down. Our kids got to take turns running in and out, singing songs and shaking the parachute.  After a while we got back on our mats for more fun yoga activities; with some Acroyoga, and encouraging the goats to climb on top of us as well. Not only were we getting to bond with our kiddos, but with animals! The kids were all enthusiastic about playing with the parachute again, so they were able to take a few more turns running in and out to get extra energy out. Finally after an hour of activity they were winding down to meditate with Lion’s Breathe, ending class on top of the parachute.

After class, we were invited to stick around taking pictures with the photo booth and goats. The kids were thrilled to feed the goats leaves from the nearby tree, which Jax was really into as well. I still can’t believe that he was feeding the animals and petting their backs at the end of our time there. He has never wanted anything to do with animals, or when we’ve been at petting zoos, so today during Goat Yoga it was a huge unexpected win for us. He left wanting to go tell his grandparents right away about it, and I was excited that we BOTH had such a great time and that he had gotten a lot of energy out. That’s what a call a win-win morning! The goats were so kind and not afraid of us or the kids getting too close, it was such a great experience.
Be sure to check out AZ Goat Yoga in Gilbert with the links i’ve provided below and the photos!
Goat Yoga Facebook

AZ Goat Yoga

Goat Yoga Instagram

 

Baby Shower

Phew, it’s been a while since i’ve updated. Went back to work for both jobs. Ten plus hours i’m still missing but it’s been a crazy ride. Three year old has had tummy troubles and been sick, going back to work both jobs, and trying to get a lot done for baby since we’re finally in the third trimester! Thirty weeks as of yesterday, thank goodness only ten or so to go.
On a positive note we had our baby shower thrown by my best friend/boss and my mom! They picked a beautiful gold and black theme with tons of beautiful decorations and delicious food. I wish we would have taken more pictures, but the ones I do have I will post below for any ideas! Although most of the menu was vegan or vegetarian, our guests, including my parents, are not so my mom made other options as well to go with their mimosas! We got some great gifts from family and friends. Even with having another boy, I feel there’s still a ton of things we need to get. There won’t ever be enough time (or money) for me to feel ready enough for baby boy 2 to come. It’s quite different this time since we will be cloth diapering our little one and we need to buy all the diapers, inserts, pre-folds, wet/dry bags, etc. to go with it! I feel more prepared for labor (maybe) and less prepared to have a newborn to diaper and to have two kids.. I’m hoping it won’t take that long of an adjustment, but it’ll all depend on how we can work as a family and how J is as a big brother. He’s extremely excited, loves tickling and talking to his baby brother; he’s also a great helper! I’m very thankful our family and friends didn’t forget about him at the baby shower, as he got some wonderful gifts! I still plan to get him a fun big brother gift/package once baby is born.
I never had a baby shower with J, it was a rough time being a single mom with not too many friends since I had just moved here a year and a half prior. How different things are four years later with a full family, great house, friends and jobs. We’re definitely blessed.

Anyways, J and I should be on an adventure tomorrow if he’s feeling up to it! Can’t wait to post about it!

 

Cloth Diapers

Everything about cloth diapers intrigues me yet scares me! I keep reading and watching videos over and over about pre-washing, what detergent to use, how to get stains out, rinsing the poop out.. and my mind can’t wrap around it.
It sounds so eco-friendly, cost efficient for us but will I really have the time? Working, a newborn and with a three year old? YIKES. Unfortunately, a lot I read about cloth diapers is coming from SAHM or WAHM, and not much from 20-40 hour working moms. When I go back to work, it’ll still be for two jobs, not sure how i’ll balance the hours out yet, but kids are expensive.. Especially a three year old who takes piano lessons, is in school, and swim lessons. YIKES! That’s a pro for breastfeeding and cloth diapering though, no money spent on formula or diapers!

Did you know how many brands or kinds of cloth diapers they are as well? Hybrids, pre-folds, covers, AIO’s, All-In-Twos, flour sack towels, all the different types of inserts, and pocket diapers! I’ve started my stash, a few pockets and covers, two or three AIOs, and one pre-fold. Hoping to get more from my baby shower… Then I’ll have so many options I won’t want to turn back once baby comes, and luckily there are so many cute prints compared to boring disposable diapers.
Thank goodness we’re still three months away from my due date, plenty of time to keep researching. I’m trying to not be overwhelmed by everything and i’m sure after a few weeks or maybe even a month or so i’ll get the hang of it. I’m also glad we live in sunny Arizona to help with line drying, so less energy using our dryer!

Wish me luck as i’m researching my days away…!

RELAXIN

I’ve been pretty MIA on social media lately, due to a little hormone us mamas know as – Relaxin. Monday night after working both jobs I came home and tried to have dinner but was overcome by an excruciating pain in my back. I tried my yoga poses I was taught that was supposed to stretch and make everything feel better – didn’t help, took a bath – didn’t help. I noticed my stomach was starting to get hard and I was having contractions anytime I stood up or moved. Went to bed expecting to sleep it off, when I woke up at 4am I couldn’t take it anymore. I ended up going to the hospital, luckily my mom who lives close by was able to drive me while Joshua stayed with J sleeping. I suspected dehydration because I never experienced contractions or even Braxton Hicks until I was in labor with J.

Once in the hospital, they sent me up to Triage where they tracked my contractions and decided that I was in fact dehydrated (shocking to everyone who knows me because I drink water like its my third job). They pain in my back didn’t stop, even as they were asking me if I could tell when my contractions were, the pain was too much for me to even notice them. I received Tylenol, and that seemed to subside it for a bit.
By the time we left the hospital I wasn’t feeling much better. We stopped to get heating therapy pads, Icy Hot pads, and Tylenol for the pain. I went home, called off work and slept. Woke up – still in pain, booked a follow up appointment with my OBGYN and decided to make a trip to the chiropractor. Could be sciatic pain right? Nope.

Fast forward to Saturday, I had one hospital trip, one doctors visit, and two chiropractic visits under my belt and still couldn’t sleep, didn’t want to stand, or sit for long periods of time.We even tried to put a SUPER squishy foam mattress topper on our bed to see if that would make things easier for me, turned out I woke up more frequently and in more pain. I refused to Google anything those first few days, but come to realize that it was definitely the hormone Relaxin that had turned me into a broken ball of mush. The only thing the doctor suggested was “Heat, bathes, Tylenol, a support band, and yoga.” Check and double checked everything off that list before I even walked into her office. During my Google searches I had read about women who had “too much Relaxin” in their body and it had affected their hips, knees, lower body, and some with their backs. Some actually had started physical therapy due to it, which is something my doctor did suggest if the pain wasn’t gone in two weeks. Physical therapy? Really? For a hormone?! Two weeks was a long time for me to wait with this pain they felt almost worse than real labor, and definitely far longer than it as well.

Finally I made it to Monday, TODAY! I attempted to go back to work after have 6 (LONG) days at home. I made it through almost 4 hours of sitting desk, since I was definitely not ready to go back into teaching my gymnastics classes; and luckily for me my second job told me not to bother to come in since the boy I work with was having a rough day and a cough. I took the horrible mattress topper off, took a nap, and woke up… in not so much pain! After a long day I can honestly say this is the least amount of pain i’ve been in, and just had to put an Icy Hot pad on my back since it’s been a long day.  I’m hoping to finally come out of it in a few days and keep working on building up my back muscles again and stretching with prenatal yoga. My paycheck and my body are definitely not happy after last week, and I can’t wait to get back to our regular schedule!  My poor husband definitely deserves a break going above and beyond taking J to school, getting him ready, putting him to bed, taking care of the pets and taking care of me as well; so grateful for him. Now i’m on the hunt for a better support band and ready to get some sleep for the first time in a week.

 

Anniversary!!

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Yesterday evening we were lucky enough to have my parents watch J at night so Joshua and I could go for a nice Italian dinner. After an extremely mentally and physically draining week it was nice to actually have a day off and do something together. We drove about twenty minutes away to a restaurant we’ve never been, “La Stalla Cucina Rustica”. It was beautiful and quiet, which is something we’re definitely not used to. We were able to tuck away our phones (after snapping pictures of our food of course), and have an uninterrupted conversation.  We split the Pasta e Fagioli soup, and I had Gnocchi Alla Sorrentina; while the hubby had his favorite, Pollo Alla Parmigiana.
I’m 6 months pregnant of course and was excited they had hot herbal teas available, and my husband being the old man that he is enjoyed an espresso. I usually don’t crave alcohol, nor do I miss it, but eating Italian food I do wish I would have been able to enjoy a glass of wine.

Our good friends ironically enough we’re celebrating a birthday two blocks away so we went to meet up with them for dessert. Couldn’t believe we were lucky enough to find somewhere that had raspberry sorbet! After some stories and laughs it was time to go pick up our bubba and get him to bed.

Today on our actual anniversary, Joshua actually took time from his lunch and dropped off beautiful Sunflowers to represent what we had at our wedding! Totally unexpected but appreciated, I love that he found a job so much closer to home.
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Everything has been a total whirlwind lately, it doesn’t seem that we’ve been married 6 months, let alone a year.Even though we were only gone 2 1/2 hours, that time together was something we desperately needed and seemed longer to me.
Working as much as we do, and having to spend most of our time either talking about preparing for the baby, work, cleaning around the house, or playing with/discussing J, it can be pretty stressful on our relationship. I love us because we don’t give up on each other and we really try to work through things right away rather than letting them linger. I’m also lucky we have my parents who are great models and have been together 31 years! Before we know it baby H will be here and we’ll be getting used to a new way of life all over again. I’m glad I have him by my side and even through our frustration and stressful jobs and life we’ll always be there for one another and our kids. I have faith in us and so does he. We make a great team.

 

 

What Being Cruelty Free Means To Me

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It took me a while to learn that eating vegan didn’t necessarily mean living a vegan or cruelty free lifestyle. I could eat plant-based, but REALLY being vegan meant no leather shoes, belts, and no animal products in my makeup, or purses.
I knew it would be a hard transition, but I truly feel strong about animal cruelty so I knew I needed to stop buying from these popular, and very accessible brands. I lucked out – my mom is an Arbonne distributor, which sells cruelty free and vegan products and makeup!companies-that-do-test-on-animals-peta-new

Did you know that not only do all those brands put animals through cruel tests just for cleaning products or to make you look pretty? Some cosmetics actually have fish scales in them! Other brands put crushed up bugs into makeup, or even into some drinks like the Starbucks Frappuccino.
I can’t feel good about putting my dollar towards brands who essentially, breed and torture animals for the sake of a profit. It may sound difficult to find something that is not only not tested on animals, but ethically made and fair traded. Thanks to Google it makes life so much easier than 10, even 5 years ago! If you do the right research you’ll find more and more fashion, cosmetic, and cleaning companies are coming up with eco-friendly and ethical practices! After reading lots of reviews and articles, i’ve found plenty of brands i’ve come to learn to love and trust. They use natural ingredients, that are easy on our environment. I’ve posted some links below if anyone wants to take a look into starting to lead a cruelty free or eco-conscious lifestyle.

Cosmetic Ingredients From Animals
Companies That Test on Animals
Food Coloring From Bugs
Eco-Conscious Companies

Yoga at Home

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J was so upset last night when I left for yoga and wanted to come with. I promised we would do yoga today, so as soon as he got home from preschool and I was home from work he was ready to go!

Montreal Pit Bull Ban

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This is our Whyatt. He’s a Pit Bull/Whippett mix, extremely hyper, and immensely loving. He’s our second adopted dog; my first is Chihuahua/Dauchshund mix about 8 years old, while Whyatt is a fresh 2 years old.

Whyatt is also the first pet or even animal our son has grown attached to. He was never interested in our cat, and definitely not our skiddish Chihuahua Odin. J didn’t talk for 2 1/2 years, was diagnosed as developmentally delayed and Sensory Processing Disorder. He had no interest in seeing animals at fairs or festivals, and almost feared coming in contact with bigger animals such as horses or cows. The way he plays and is attached to Whyatt is amazing to me. J loves to feed him, play tug of war, as well as engaging in fetch. He gets excited to have a dog who loves him, snuggles, him and of course protects him.
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BOTH our dogs jump at the chance to bark and people passing by, kids walking down the street, and growling at other dogs. Of course, because Whyatt is a Pit Bull, we called around for home owner’s insurance and almost immediately people denied us because we have a “dangerous” breed dog. Our little dog is no more aggressive than our big pibble and reading about the Montreal Pitt Bull breed upset me so much today. Just comparing our two dogs; Whyatt is much more human-like and compassionate compared to Odin. He loves when we come home, he’s great around babies, and if we’re sick or feeling upset he is the FIRST pet to come comfort us. I read the article below, and couldn’t believe all the rules and laws pet owners will have to deal with in Montreal.
Have a cat? They’re not safe either! Our cat has even clawed his way through a window screen. He doesn’t wear a leash or tag, so he would be euthanized? Great..
I’m hoping and praying that they reverse and change their laws soon.. Thankfully SPCA has filed a lawsuit.. Here’s to wishing for the best for our animals <3.

Why Does Montreal’s Mayor Hate Dogs? | Ray the Vicktory Dog

 

Prenatal Yoga!

There’s nothing like starting my yoga practice up again. Practicing at home, definitely doesn’t have the same benefits as taking a class. I feel like I can focus and calm my mind so much more in the right environment. I signed up for prenatal yoga classes, and it completely exceeded my expectations tonight.
I felt fully energized after class, yet calm and relaxed. The instructor was extremely informational and well educated. I walked into a yoga studio that i’ve never been in, with complete strangers and felt right at home. We worked on how to position the baby if he/she is coming down posterior, how our breathes our linked to our contractions and fight or flight, and great positions for labor. Can’t wait to go back Wednesday for more.