Kids, Mom Life, parenting, Parenting is hard

The Hardest Goodbyes

LifeUnEdited Week #6

I promised I would give you life UnEdited each week, so here it is me getting real with you with my adventures of Parenting and Marriage! If you are just joining us, click here to find out just why we are giving you Life UnEdited!

The Hardest Goodbyes

I feel a physical pang in my stomach that is indescribable. It happens 4 times a year; when I watch two of my greatest joys walk down the long runway to get on the plane to go see their dad. I feel the tears stream silently down my face. I hear the sobs of Talie wanting to chase after her older brothers. I hug her and tell her that they will be back soon, but she doesn’t understand, she is only two. I push TJ in the stroller as I carry a sobbing little girl who just wants her brothers. We miss them already. We walk to the car hugging each other, we get in and start the silent drive home without a piece of us.


The boys’ dad and I have figured out how to co-parent pretty well, always putting the boys’ needs and desires before our own, but it still does not make the sadness go away when they are gone.

You tend to start to miss the endless amounts of laundry they make, their shoes throughout the house. The little scuffles over who’s turn it is to play video games. The jokes they tell, the music they play and sing, and the requests to play outside with them. At dinner, you miss them “accidentally burping” and blaming other bodily functions on each other. I know what you are thinking, how do you miss all of that? but somehow you still do because it is a piece of them.

You find yourself wondering throughout the day what they are doing and wishing you could talk them all the time. You find yourself listening intently for your phone to ring in hopes it is them just to say, “hi!” You find yourself counting down the hours until you get to see each other again. You find yourself thinking the house is way too quiet without them in it.


The hardest goodbyes are watching my kids go away, but these hard goodbyes make all the moments with them even sweeter. It makes you cherish all the moments that everyone else takes for granted. It makes you grateful for the time you do have. It makes you love a little more while they are with you. The reason why I feel the pain when they leave is because I love them so much, and every time I feel that pain makes me realize I love them even more than I did the last time they left.





baby, Kids, Mom Life, My Life

The Number One Worst Mistake You Make While Nursing

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Back in the day (2004 and 2006) when I was having the boys I loved nursing them! I loved the 10-minute intervals throughout the day I was able to spend with them thinking about all the hopes and dreams I had for them and watching them grow before my very eyes.

Fast forward 13 years and I am once again sitting on the couch nursing a baby so many times a day because he loves to eat! No joke, he eats 4 times throughout the night and then eats another 9 times throughout the day. I spend at least 4 hours a day nursing Tony. I am so serious because I have timed it!

During this time I am pretty much stuck in one spot unable to get up and use the bathroom, have limited range of motion to help other kids, I can’t get up to go make dinner, I just get to sit there, and since “just sitting” is a little boring I begin to multi task (because let’s be honest, all women love to multitask) and I so I pick up my phone and begin checking my email, paying bills, grocery shopping, which then leads to checking Facebook, Instagram, and all my other social media accounts. I then move on to playing a game or texting a friend all while sitting nursing my baby!

When it is time to feed Tony, I begin thinking, “Okay where is his pacifier, where’s his blanket, Oh! Where is my phone? And yes, if I don’t know exactly where it is I will look for it before feeding him. And on those rare occasions where I make it to the couch to feed him without it, I have been known to wander around the house feeding him to grab my phone on multiple occasions.

You Might Be Asking Yourself

Why is using my phone while nursing my baby a problem? I thought this too for a long time, in fact, I didn’t see a problem at all until I saw a HUGE PROBLEM!

You see my problem all started when I spent so much time at the hospital when Tony was born. I was all by myself all day and all night while he laid doing phototherapy, so I would just sit and play on my phone. Because of his sugar issues, I needed to feed him at least every two hours all day and all night long for the first few weeks of his life. Feedings lasted 20-30 minutes at a time. That was at least 4 hours of my life that I dedicated to feeding him, EVERY SINGLE DAY. It became very routine. The days were long, and the nights were longer. I began to rely on my phone as a timer as well as a source to just keep me awake during the feedings.

I began by reading on my phone, but then that would put me to sleep, so I became a Facebook scroller, acquired an Instagram account, so I could scroll there as well, I became a gamer, (if I could just beat one more level of candy crush), and I became an even bigger texter.

Over the next several (7) months this became my norm. I would sit down to nurse Tony and immediately pick up my phone, I would always justify it as multitasking, and I was good with it until I realized what I was doing one day!

What Was I Doing that was so Bad?

You see… Here’s what happened. I was sitting there feeding Tony (it was about the time that he was beginning to sitting up and he was rolling everywhere and was becoming so distracted),  and he just kept moving, he would squirm this way, then that way and then he would start to drink and then immediately move his head in another direction to look at something allowing milk to squirt everywhere, and I was trying to LOOK AT SOMETHING ON MY PHONE.

Annoyed at the situation I set my phone down and got him all set up again. I picked up my phone and he immediately did it again, but this time grabbing my phone, trying to get it in his mouth.

“No, Tony,” I said annoyed again at the situation…

At that very moment, I knew there was a problem, and it wasn’t my baby grabbing my phone!

At that very moment, I realized I was addicted to my phone.

I was choosing to “get something else done” rather than focusing on making sure that he would sit there and eat. I knew he was at the age where everything else is more interesting than eating and I feeding his curiosity with this bright screen right next to his head.

I began to reflect back and think about when the last time I sat down for an entire feeding without my phone, and I couldn’t think of one, not a single one! I then began to think of other free moments I had. Every single one of these moments I found myself realizing that there was always a phone in my hand.

At that moment I decided I needed a Phone Detox, especially while nursing!

Have you done this as a nursing mom?

Do you find yourself always picking up your phone during feedings?

Do you find yourself picking up your phone and “checking it” at every free moment you have?

How Did We Become Addicted to Our Phones?

Let’s face it, our brains have trained us well to NEED that small screen always in front of us! With every ding and notification we receive, a little voice inside of us cheers with the thought that we Just received a message from a friend, a new follower on Instagram, or another life on our favorite game and we get excited!

We have become a society that uses our phones for everything from calling people, to finding directions to where we are going, to playing games and scrolling through news feeds. We use them to not only distract us from what is going on around us, but we use them as our number one source of entertainment.

Addiction to our phones didn’t happen overnight. It started with us innocently reading a book, or checking our email, or scrolling through Facebook for 5-minutes while nursing. It then turned into 5-minutes every feeding, which somehow made it to the whole feeding. And then if you are really like me, it turned into continuing to play on your phone because you have a sleeping baby on you who really needs to nap, so you think to yourself “what else am I going to do?” so you just keep scrolling and clicking.

Do you do this too?

We have now turned our special bonding moments with our babies, that we will never get back, into mind-numbing scrolling, just because we felt like we needed something to do because perhaps you are like me and felt like nursing your baby was not enough and felt the need to multitask.

There are so many moms out there that began picking up their phones while nursing their babies, it became innocent, just like mine did, but months, even years later after they were done nursing their babies they admit that they are still addicted to their smartphones picking them up 20 times a day for several minutes at a time.

I Decided it was Time to Take Back My LIfe and Get Off My Phone. Are you ready to join me too?

You might be wondering how do we even start to break the cycle we started?

Well, with this 7-day plan we will be off our smartphones in no time!

Here’s How!

Day 1 (Monday)

  • Clean UP Your Social Media- Unfollow people that you don’t talk to anymore. Unsubscribe to pages and groups that you don’t use anymore.
  • Clean Up Your Apps- Are there apps that you don’t want anymore? Delete those. Are there games that you have that suck all your time away? It is time for those to go too! Are there shopping apps that you have to check every single day at 6am to make sure you get it before it is all gone, or that you spend too much money on? Delete those too.
  • Clean up your Email- Unsubscribe to all the emails that you NEVER open.

Day 2 (Tuesday)

  • Turn Off Your Push Notifications- I know how hard this is! One of my favorite things used to be to pick up my phone first thing in the morning and see if I had any new IG followers, Twitter Followers, or new Likes on our Facebook Page. This “simple check” turned into the first 15 minutes of my day staring at my phone rather than being productive.
  • Put your phone somewhere that you don’t go all the time and put it on vibrate (leave it on Vibrate for Detox Week and keep it in this location when not in use or charging)– When your phone is on vibrate you aren’t tempted to stop playing with your kids or making dinner to rush to see who is calling/ texting you. Trust me, whatever it is, is probably not that important. I set mine on my kitchen counter. It is far enough away to not distract me, but close enough that I can tap the screen every now and again to make sure my kids or husband haven’t called.

Day 3 (Wednesday)

  • Resist the urge to pick up your phone first thing in the morning! Get through your whole morning routine without looking at your phone. Need a morning routine? Check ours out here, you will love it! Once you get through it all, you can check your phone for 5 minutes. Set a timer. This teaches you to get through the most important things and not carelessly scroll for hours.
  • While in the car, leave your phone in your purse. Don’t immediately call a friend or your mom. Enjoy who is in the car with you, or if you are by yourself, enjoy a little peace and quiet. I guarantee the first time you do this it will feel really weird, but just keep doing it and you will begin to love the quiet time you have to just think and reflect.

Day 4 (Thursday)

  • Set up a new Charging Location that is not in your room. Our electronics charge in the laundry room. In our house, there is a rule that all phones need to be plugged in by 8:30pm. I always felt exempt from this rule, but I decided that it might be good for me too, so I plug my phone in at least an hour before bed.

You know what happened when I started doing this?

I was actually tired and could fall right asleep when I went to bed, rather than just checking one more thing while laying in bed!

Day 5 (Friday)

  • Go 2 hours in the morning without looking/ checking your phone and 2 hours in the afternoon or night. When the two hours is up you can see if someone has called or texted you and if they have you can look at them and respond, but then put it right back. You might have huge anxiety doing this… It’s because your brain is telling you that you need your phone when in all actuality you don’t.
  • Go out to Dinner with your family and leave your phone in your purse the whole time. Don’t pull it out to even check the time. Just enjoy being in the moment with your family

Day 6 (Saturday)

  • Take the Day off from all Social Media and Games

Day 7 (Sunday)

  • Leave your phone plugged in all day and don’t use it.

After Phone Detox, Now What?

After you go through your 7 Day Detox you will (hopefully) no longer be addicted to your phone! Continue to plug it in an hour before bed in the same place outside your bedroom. Continue to keep it on vibrate for much of the day with it living in the spot you left it during your detox. Consider limiting your own screen time with an app or Circle by Disney, which is actually how I limit my kids’ screen time.

But What Do I Do While I am Nursing?

A new habit I have gotten into is reading books to our toddler or reading an actual book! I place it off to the side of me out of the way that is not distracting to Tony, but to be honest, my favorite thing to do is to play with his bald little head (will he ever get hair?), or watch him squirm around, or hold his tiny little hands. After detoxing from my phone I have loved just watching him grow during these bonding moments that will all slip away too quickly. I know when they are gone I will be wishing for them back, so I am so glad I was able to recognize that I was addicted to my phone and detox while there was still time to enjoy my last Nursing Baby like I enjoyed my first two so many years ago.

I know giving up your phones while nursing is hard! Trust me! I just went through it, but I promise you it is so worth it in the long run because these moments will soon be gone!

Who’s ready to join me on the detox journey?

Comment Below!

Let’s support one another!

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Kids, Mom Life, parenting, Parenting is hard

Sometimes I Don’t Have it in Me

LifeUnEdited Week #4

I promised I would give you life UnEdited each week, so here it is me getting real with you with my adventures of Parenting and Marriage! If you are just joining us, click here to find out just why we are giving you Life UnEdited!

Sometimes I Don’t Have it in Me

Some days I just don’t have it in me to be a mom and a blogger, and to be all honest being a mom comes first. There are those days that I am able to sit and write and promote on social media for hours while the kids play around me and they take long naps so I can focus on my blogs, blogging-lifebut then there are days that at first sign of the computer opening they start the whining and the clinging to my side.


I know to be what they call, a “successful blogger” you need to dedicate ALL YOUR TIME to blogging all day long, but I can’t, I can’t because I care about my kids too much! Do I wish I could pull all-nighters every night to get it all done? Of course, but that’s not reality.

Between kids, church callings, board positions, being a good wife, and a blogger, something always has to give, and it usually is my blog.

My sad lonely blogging chair, when life needs me…

So you know those days when you think to yourself, “I’m going to go read my favorite blog, Confessions of Parenting (wink, wink)” and you don’t see a new post, just know that life is happening and occupying a little more of my time than normal, but don’t worry I will always be back…

So on those days that I don’t have it me to answer your comments or respond to your questions, know that I read each and every one of them! Know that I love hearing from you. Know that you are all the reason that I keep writing. Know that I write my blog for all of you! Know that I share the inner workings of our crazy family life to hopefully make a difference in yours. So, Thank You for always being there for me, even on those days that I don’t have it in me because I am busy being a mom to my kids who really need me that day!









Kids, parenting, remarriage, Step Families, Stepmoms

How To Bond With Your Stepkids

I remember meeting my stepdaughter for the first time. I actually met her before I met my husband. She was 4 at the time and took quite a liking to me… She talked to me about everything: her dad’s boat, how she would draw in the garage on her easel, and even about Princess Dolphin, her rabbit. We established a bond early on without even knowing that I would one day marry her dad!

Soon after meeting Ty’s daughter I met Ty and we decided that we might want to date each other to see where it could go. We casually dated for a couple of months with no intention of involving the kids in our relationship, I mean what if it didn’t work out? That would have been so hard on them!

After awhile Ty and I decided that we really liked each other and wanted to see where this would go, so we decided it was time to have each other meet the kids and see how it went. I remember the first time Ty met Colby, Colby decided to stare him down with the “evil death stare” as we call it in our house… It didn’t go well. The second time they met was after they were all hyped up on Mountain Dew after the San Francisco Giants had just won a playoff game to make it to the World Series. Again, it did not go well! These encounters were not successful. We decided that it was time to really make some special attempts to see if the boys could bond with Ty because let’s be honest, if the kids didn’t like him or got along with him, then a marriage would never work out. The same went for my relationship with Ty’s daughter because if we could not bond then there would always be contention, lucky for me Ty’s daughter and I had already bonded a little bit before.

Bonding with stepchildren is not an easy process, in fact establishing a bond with stepkids is probably one of the most difficult things you will do in your marriage. If you don’t establish a bond you can almost guarantee that your home with always be filled with some sort of contention.

So how do you bond with your Stepchildren?

These 10 Tips will Help you Bond with your Stepkids!

Move slowly. Take your time. Don’t force a relationship immediately. Let your step-child set the pace. You know how all this is new for you? Well, we have to remember that it is all new to them as well. We didn’t fall in love with our spouse overnight, so we can’t expect for our stepkids to fall in love with us overnight.

Discover what your step-child is interested in. Make the effort to find out what some of their favorite things are. Perhaps a sports team, a favorite movie, or food. Do you like these same things? If so, that can help start a relationship. If not, then use their favorite thing to talk to them. “So how did the Giants do last night?” “I love doughnuts too, what’s your favorite kind? Maybe on Saturday, we can go to the doughnut shop together.” “I haven’t seen that movie, what’s it about.” There may be ways to connect with them through these interests.

Treat Them Like Your Family. I know this might sound odd, but it is true. If you stepkids only come every other weekend or for school breaks, it is easy to treat them like a guest in the home, but this doesn’t help establish a relationship. Make sure they feel just as a part of the family as every other family member.

Include Them. If you see your stepchild sitting by themselves, invite them to join in what you are doing. Kids can tell when they are being left out, so make an effort to include them in all things, including chores and household responsibilities.

Be Real. Kids know when you are being fake. They know when you like something or don’t like something. Don’t pretend to be something you are not just to try and establish a relationship. Wait to find something that you BOTH like and bond over that! I promise you will find something

Put in the Time. Bonding with your stepkids doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time. It takes energy. It takes effort. The question is Are you willing to put in the time? Once you establish a relationship it doesn’t end there, just like your marriage you need to continue to nurture the relationship for it to continue to grow.

Don’t play favorites. It is easy to favor your new stepchild to make them like you, but this just only causes contention with everybody else. Don’t do it, it hurts everybody in the long run because you don’t want to have your stepchild establish you as the “pushover step-parent”

Give them Time with their Real Parent. You might be wondering how this could help establish a bond with the two of you, but it does! It lets your stepchild know that you care about their relationship with their parent and in turn strengthens yours. So make sure that they have special time together it could be going out for ice cream, reading a book together, or even shooting baskets together.  

Ask Your Spouse for Advice. If you are struggling with bonding with your stepchild, ask your spouse if they have any ideas of ways that you can try and bond with their child. I mean they do know their child best, so it’s the perfect person to seek guidance from!

Learn from others. Bonding with your stepchildren is HARD, hands down. It can be frustrating. Find others who have gone through the blending process so you can talk to them about what works. This will be your greatest blessing in blending a family.

So there you have it!  With these 10 Simple, but effective strategies you will be bonding with your stepchild in no time!

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Kids, Mom Life, parenting, Parenting is hard

I Turned Around for Two Seconds

LifeUnEdited Week #3

I promised I would give you life UnEdited each week, so here it is me getting real with you with my adventures of Parenting and Marriage! If you are just joining us, click here to find out just why we are giving you Life UnEdited!


I Turned Around for Two Seconds

You know the saying, “I turned around for two seconds.” Well, it happened to me the other night… I turned around for two seconds and you aren’t going to believe what happened?!

It all started when I was in the kitchen making dinner for my people. My kids were starving (apparently), but I kept reminding them and insisting that dinner would be on the table in just 1 minute.

My older kids were “watching their younger brother” while watching a show on Netflix, which translates to me asking, “Where is Mason?!” pretty consistently now that he is super mobile. After asking a handful of times   I didn’t get an answer, so I rush into the living room and then I saw it, something green around his mouth and on his fingers, so I go in for a closer look… “What the heck is this?”


Yep, you read that right. Play-doh…

Are you flipping kidding me?! How on Earth did he find play-doh?


It seems as though it took way too long for me to make dinner according to the nine-month-old, I guess he knew that it was another night of Hamburger Helper, Go Me!

Please tell me I’m not the only mom on this planet that has let their kid take a bite of this stuff in lieu of their awesome cooking skills!

~Written by Shiree. Shiree is an intern that is currently finishing up her degree in marriage and family studies. We are so glad to have her working with us this semester.