Saturday, March 25, 2017

New Mommy Care Kit and #howsmama

Having a new baby is probably one of the most exciting things in the world!  New babies are so sweet and cuddly and they just smell so good.  In all the excitement, I think it's really easy to overlook the new mommy.  Today, I wanted to show you the little kit that I bring when I go to meet baby for the first time.  

(This post is NOT sponsored but I am using affiliate links and will get a small cut if you decide to purchase using the links.  Most of these items can be found at your local grocery store but I'm adding links for anyone who prefers online shopping.  Thank you for any support you give to my blog!)  


Being a new mom is absolutely exhausting!  I don't remember most of it because it was just a blur of constant exhaustion and hunger, especially when I was nursing!  I think the most important (obviously) thing to bring Mommy is snacks!  Here are the items that I like to bring:

1. Fruit and nut bars.  These are semi healthy and have good fats in them to hold Mommy over while she's nursing or rocking the baby without access to hot food.  These bars Fruit & Nut Bars by NutriGrain are a nice choice.  Mommy can get them with one hand while feeding baby at the same time or she can throw them in her diaper bag and have a snack while in the car between all those newborn appointments.

2. Nuts.  Healthy fats are not only a great way for a new mommy to stay full, but they can also help her body to create rich milk to help baby regain that usual one pound loss after being born.  My favorite (it's a local company so I'm biased) is Blue Diamond Lightly Salted Almonds.  I usually like a lot of flavors on my almonds BUT if Mommy is nursing, the baby might not like any wasabi or habanero that might get passed into the milk.  I think lightly salted is the perfect choice since there's a little flavor but not overly salty to make Mommy even more thirsty.

3. Trail Mix.  Again with the natural fats and fruit adds a nice sweetness without being an unhealthy treat.  I love the Second Nature ones since they are all natural.  But you could even get ones with chocolate chips or little chocolate candies for a treat.  I love snacks that require no refrigeration and are very portable!  Mommy can even leave this bag in the nursery and have a handful in the middle of the night if she needs a little boost of energy.

4. Oatmeal cookies with flax.  These filling little treats are great for a nursing mom!  Oatmeal and flax seeds are two ingredients that boost milk production.  If I have time, I will make lactation cookies for my mommy friends but my life gets really hectic and I love that these Kashi Oatmeal Raisin Flax Cookies are an alternative.

5. A yummy snack.  I know that everything else has all these nutritional reasons behind it but I like to add a nice yummy (usually crunchy and savory) snack too.  I mean, who doesn't just like a crunchy snack while watching TV?  I like Pretzel Crisps because they are flavorful and crunchy without too much guilt.  And they are good for dipping too if you are so inclined.

6.  A little something for baby.  Obviously you came to see baby and baby items are just so darn cute. I added these cute little football leg warmers to my kit for baby.  Stuffed animals, an outfit, little mittens, or burp clothes are all great little gifts too.

Optional items:
~ For nursing moms I like to give Medela Nursing Pads (they are the only brand that works for me) and Lansinoh cream.
~ A cute water bottle or insulated cup would be nice as new mommies get so thirsty.
~ Dinner or lunch.  I cannot stress how amazing pizza is because you can eat it with one hand and not worry about getting it all over baby!
~ A homemade gift certificate for free babysitting by you!

While you're there, don't forget to ask these questions (supplied from Also Known As Mama):
1. I know baby's great, but how's mama?
2. How are you REALLY doing?
3. Are you feeling overwhelmed?
4. Do you need any help?
5. Have you touched bases with your doctor/midwife since the baby was born?


I was so overwhelmed and depressed after having my oldest son.  My "friends" took my overwhelmed and hopeless comments to mean I was ungrateful or didn't want a child.  I had no idea that I was suffering from Postpartum Depression!  I thought it was the baby blues mixed with being tired.  I was so sad all the time.  I felt helpless and trapped.  I felt like I was failing as a mother.  I cried constantly.  I never want my friends to think that they have to suffer through this alone.  Ask you friends if they need help and REALLY mean it.  You could LITERALLY be saving someone's life.

If you are reading this and you feel like you have no one to turn to, you're wrong.  You have me.  Email me and I will help you through.  It's not all magic and sunshine like people make you believe but that's ok!  Just hang on and seek help!

Help spread the awareness!  You can print out this sign on Also Known As Mama's post and share your story or share a tip about helping a new mom or just share a picture of yourself holding the sign on Instagram so that your new mommy friends know that you care how they are doing.  It's the tiny little gestures that mean a lot when someone is low.  Go be a beacon of light in someone's day!


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Monday, March 13, 2017

Plus Sized Outfit for ONLY $50 with Thrift Plus!

I cannot tell you all how excited I am for this collaboration!  I reached out to Thrift Plus after they started following me on Instagram and together we decided that I should do a post where I get a whole outfit for $50!  A three piece outfit for a plus sized girl for $50?  I love that idea!  I love nice clothes but I also love saving money!  If you love saving money, read to the end of my post for a COUPON CODE!


 Thrift Plus is an online boutique where you can find new and in excellent condition plus sized clothing.  It's all the convenience of online shopping but at a thrift store price!  They sell items from size 10-32!  They have a lot of items in the larger range which I find lacking on most sites.  They also buy excellent condition used clothing and even have a process where you can send in pictures for pre-screening.  All orders of $50 or more ship for free.  They just started in Sept 2016.  c

Thrift Plus is run by Miranda Schultz and her husband Kevin who does the photography and the technical side.  Miranda is a plus sized gal who loves plus sized fashion.  She was selling off some of her gently used clothes on Facebook and saw how many women were longing for beautiful plus sized clothing at an affordable price.  Miranda started Thrift Plus to help plus sized ladies around the country.  She is the cutest and I wish we could go to coffee!

Onto the outfit!  I managed to get a three piece outfit for $50.  I happened to be shopping on a weekend where there was a $5 off jackets or coats coupon.  Not only did I get three pieces, I got some good name brand stuff!  If you have any question about how an item might fit, you can ask Miranda.

Here's the break down:
Ambition 3/4 Sleeve Black Blazer $14.99 on coupon for $9.99
Eloquii Blue Cross Front Peplum Top $19.99
Ashley Stewart Black and White Scuba Circle Skirt $19.99



GUESS WHAT?!?  Today, Thrift Plus is giving ALL of you a 20% off coupon!  Just use code Ashley20 and you'll get 20% off.  I'm so excited that I get to share this with you all.  You have to hurry because there's only one of each item in the shop!  Can you get a full outfit for $50, too?



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Thursday, March 9, 2017

New Product Find: Kombrewcha (Kombucha for 21+)

A few weeks ago, I got invited to an amazing brunch for the launch of Kombrewcha in the Sacramento area in the gorgeous Mulvaney's party room.  I'm not gonna lie, I've never been invited to an event like this before and I was pretty darn excited!  Today, I wanted to share what I learned about the product with you and some pictures of the event.

I've jumped on the flatlay bandwagon.  LOL!
Kombrewcha is a naturally alcoholic kombucha tea that is low in calories and sugar.  Kombrewcha is pretty low in alcohol, organic, only 65 calories per serving, and full of probiotics.  They use small amounts of agave nectar to give it a sweet finish.  Most kombucha manufacturers remove the alcohol out of their product so they can sell it as a tea drink which makes the kombucha more sour and acidic.  Kombucha is a lightly effervescent drink that is made with kombucha yeast fermented with black or green tea and usually sweetened.  It is said to have health benefits from all the fermenting and probiotics.  

I have tried kombucha tea and I normally don't like it very much.  It's too acidic for me.  Kombrewcha doesn't have that acidity.  I really enjoy drinking Kombrewcha since it has a nice lightly sweet flavor and just a tiny kick of alcohol.  This is perfect for brunch since I don't do well with strong drinks early in the day.  My favorite flavor is the Berry Hibiscus since it is a little fruity and a little floral.  

As promised here are the pictures from the event!  It was so fun!  







You can get Kombrewcha in the Sacramento area at Nugget Markets or in West Sac at The Beer Cooler.  If you are not local to me, you can check out Kombrewcha's website to see where you can get it and they ship to some places too!  (I am not affiliated with Kombrewcha and get nothing if you decide to purchase.  I was given samples and yummy food at the event but all the my opinions, as always, are mine.)


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Monday, March 6, 2017

Gwynnie Bee Plus Size Clothing Box 1

In my February Favorites post, I mentioned that I just started a 30 day FREE trial of Gwynnie Bee.  Today, I wanted to show you what I got in my first box and tell you about my experience so far.  Spoiler alert, I loved my first box so much that I signed up to be an affiliate.  If you sign up using my link, it will help me to keep my subscription.  Thank you for any support that you give my blog!


Gwynnie Bee is a monthly subscription where you can rent out clothes sizes 10-32.  They mail the clothing to you and when you are done with the items you can either return them or buy them for a discounted price.  You don't know need wash the clothes, you just throw them into the pre-paid envelope and put them back in the mail.  They suggest you go onto the site and mark the items that you are returning so they can start preparing your next shipment.

I was super excited when I signed up for Gwynnie Bee!  I immediately started adding things to my closet.  There are TONS of brands I've never tried before on the site.  When I was unsure about how the items would fit, I would read through the reviews.  People who leave reviews will say if things fit true to size or runs small/large.  I also loved seeing the photos that people posted of themselves in the clothes!  It was really helpful to see the clothes on real bodies and even more so when I found someone with my body type.  I added about a dozen items to my closet and shortly after I got an email saying that my first box had shipped.  The email showed the items that were coming so I could plan where I should wear my pieces.

Here's how my box arrived.

The first three items I got were all dresses.  It pushed me to go outside of my style a little which was the point when I decided to try Gwynnie Bee.  I wanted to try different styles and different brands that I might not have access to in real life.  The first three dresses were quite a bit out of my comfort zone.  I'm also not great at styling or accessorizing but I gave it a shot.  My photos are mostly taken by my 9 year old son, it is what it is.  

This is the Georgia Floral Dress in Black from Queen of Heartz.  I should have sized up in this dress but I don't think that would have helped a lot.  The neckline fit me funny, it was too loose but the rest of the dress was very tight.  The hemline wasn't for me.  I put sent this dress back without wearing.  I styled it with a big necklace, a small lace clutch, and shiny peep toe shoes.  (Sorry, I did an awful job editing out my neighbor's house and an super ugly tree that had all its branches trimmed down that was super distracting.)  

This is Ruched Dress in Polka Dot print from Eliza J.  This dress fit like a dream!  The gathering was so flattering on my body.  I almost kept this one.  I wore it ALL day to a lunch with my new friend Kendra of Paleo Paparazzi and then an influencer event at a sports bar.  I felt adorable and super comfortable.  I also didn't feel the need to wear shape wear.  I styled this with a statement necklace, a white cardigan, and some booties.  (Huge shout out to my friend Megan from Unsipped for taking this photo for me!)

Lastly, I got the Bold Floral Belted Sweater Dress from Gabby Skye.  This one is so cute!  The heavier material is perfect for winter/early spring in California.  I loved the fit of this dress!  The added little belt really enhanced my waistline.  The heavy fabric made me feel like I could get away with no shape wear again.  I wore this out to happy hour with my amazing friend Wanda from A Blog Called Wanda and she called me a foxy lady.  :D  I style this here with some wedges.

I'm really excited to get my next box from Gwynnie Bee!  I think this service would be great for anyone losing weight (you could get different sizes as often as you want), who goes to lots of events (like me) and doesn't want to have the same stuff on all the time, or anyone who loves fashion but doesn't want to commit to buying a bunch of clothes.  Have you ever tried a service like this?  Let me know what you thought in the comments!  

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Wednesday, March 1, 2017

February 2017 Favorites

Hi friends!  I thought I would try a new kind of post and share my favorites once a month.  I know a lot of YouTubers do this and I think it's fun to see what people are liking every month.  It's a nice way to get to know them and a great way to hear about new products, tv shows, books, etc... that I might not have already heard about.

***I have used a few affiliate links in this post (and lots of non affiliate links.)  If you purchase or sign up through the affiliate links, I will get a small benefit.  Thank you for any support you'd like to give my blog!


One Day at a Time on Netflix.  Netflix put a new spin on the classic One Day at a Time tv show.  This show is about a single mom who is a former Army nurse raising her teenage daughter and her preteen son with the help of her old school Cuban mother.  I love this show!  It has the cheesy 90's sitcom vibe but under all that, they hit the hard issues like Veteran's issues, PTSD, immigration, feminism, and more.  Every single episode makes me laugh and cry.  I deeply care about the characters and I cannot wait for another season of this show.

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 Gwynnie Bee.  I just signed up for the free trial of Gwynnie Bee and I don't know why I waited for so long!  I enjoy it so much I applied to be an affiliate.  I've been going to so many events lately and I don't want to buy a new outfit every time.  Gwynnie Bee works perfectly for me since I can rent an outfit, it ships to me, I wear it, and return it.  I don't have to wash anything and once they get the items back, they ship me new clothes.  A monthly subscription is about how much I usually pay for just one outfit.  I'm going to do a full post on Gwynnie Bee really soon.  You can get a FREE month to try it out and see if it works for you, check it out HERE.


This super cute unicorn macaron from Rooftop Macarons.  I mean, doesn't she look just like me?  LOL!  This is the photo I took and posted on my Instagram.  This macaron was as tasty as it was cute!  And yes, I eat these things.  I don't believe in buying cute food just to let it go bad and sit around.  Though, truthfully, sometimes that happens.


Primula infusion pitcher with lemon strawberry water.  I finally folded and bought a real infusion pitcher.  I was using a regular pitcher before and it doesn't work as well.  I could be imagining things but I think this pitcher works better, the water tastes better, and I don't get lemon seeds or chunks of fruit in my cup.  I like drinking lemon water because it's good for my health but sometimes it can be too sour or lean a little bitter.  I've started adding some strawberries and they lend a great natural sweetness!  Plus it's nice to change things up so you don't get sick of the same flavor everyday.  I've been adding a few different fruits to my water but this combo is by far my favorite.


I was recently photographed at the Old Elk Grove Farmers Market and published in Ardent for Life Magazine which clearly makes it my new favorite magazine, right?  LOL!  But seriously, they put out a GORGEOUS glossy full color magazine all about Elk Grove and it's FREE!  Yes, that's right!  You can pick up your copy around town for free.  I usually get mine at Rescate Coffee.

I hope you found some fun new things or at least enjoyed hearing about my favorites this month.  Do you have favorites that I should check out?  Please leave me a comment and I will try to check them out!


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