5/23/18

The Benefits of Postpartum Belly Wraps






I remember the ignorant bliss of thinking I'd deliver my baby and leave the hospital rocking pre-pregnancy clothes. Like magically, I'd lose all of the weight I'd gained during pregnancy. Ha! My baby accounted for a third of the weight I gained. There was no way I was squeezing into my prepregnancy clothes.--I left the hospital looking like I was still pregnant. Which, sucked. I was tired of the weight, back pain and feeling like a dumpy, frumpy toad. Then my sister gave me a postpartum belly wrap.

 My back pain and frumps faded.

FUN FACT: Abdominal binders were originally created to help with back pain because they increased abdominal support, which helped people with back pain get around better.





According to Jay Goldberg, MD, an obstetrician/gynecologist in Beverly Hills, Calif., agrees. "We have been prescribing abdominal binders for a long time. They have been used for tummy tucks and back problems, but with obstetrics, these wraps help women recovering from a vaginal delivery or a C-section with their posture, abdominal support, and self-confidence.”



Benefits of Postpartum Belly Wraps:

  • Supports lower back.
  • Creates good posture especially with C-Section mommies.
  • Promotes good blood circulation to assist with healing.
  • Helps the stomach's natural ability to compress back into shape.
  • Promotes less water retention.
  • Assists with the tightening of loose skin.
  • The gentle compression of the belly binder on the abs may help the uterus return to its normal size quicker when worn for four to six weeks after delivery to reap the maximum benefits.
Of course Hollywood has sworn by them since the original Belly Bandit came on the scene:


I'm a firm believer in the benefits of a postpartum wrap, and it's all for one simple reason, Posture.

Belly binders/wraps/bands, call it whatever you want, help with posture which instantly leads to looking, and feeling, taller, thinner, and most important, engaging muscles. The better posture reduced my back pain and increased my abdominal engagement which helped with healing from my c-section. I loved mine and have since gifted quite a few, most recently to my sister-in-law.

Bottom Line: Belly Bands force your body into engaging your muscles, and that leads to healing, strength and yes, weight loss. Though, if rapid weight loss is your goal, you'll need to exercise and eat a clean, healthy diet.

You can check out the original Belly Bandit here.




5/15/18

Make This For Your Memorial Day Party

Are you going to a Memorial Day party and have no idea what to bring? 
Are you hopeless in the kitchen? 
Want to look like an overachiever when you are far from one? 
Having a Memorial Day party and need cheap, easy decoration ideas?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, then good news, below are a few of my favorite SUPER EASY to make Magical Memorial Day Party Hacks and Snacks! 





SNACKS

Red, White and BLEU sliders!
I love bleu cheese. Love it!

OR! Make my new favorite party treat, Bacon Cheese Burger Meatballs!  Color the Mayo blue with a few drops of blue food coloring.




Don't forget the RED, WHITE And BLUE Hot Dogs! 
Add blue food coloring to mustard to make
Red (ketchup), White (Mayo) and Blue (Mustard) Hotdogs! 



For the kids... Firework Dogs!






First of all, this BATTER HACK will change the baking game for you...

Add different color batter to piping bags to make endless treat color-combo possibilities. Apply same pressure when squeezing for precise designs and mixing.



Now, do this...


No Doubt the kids will go MENTAL for these Firecracker Cake bites. TIP: Use a chopstick to make a hole in the center for the pop rocks, MUCH easier than cutting out little circles.  

If you can't be bothered to make the firecrackers, 
stack the cakes, sprinkling the Pop Rocks in between layers. 
Ice with white icing and sprinkle more Poproocks on top.

Simple, Easy, Healthy, American Flag pretzel and fruit party tray



This festive red-white-and-blue ice cream sandwich is ultra easy.  It's just store-bought ice cream sandwiches with a popsicle stick shoved in the middle then pressed in red, white and blue sprinkles. Done. 
So friggin easy.
This fruit flag only works when served immediately. The bananas go brown. Serve for brunch if anything. Outside will not work for this one.

The below watermelon, blueberry and cheese dish is my favorite festive go-to. Except, in a bowl. I mix the watermelon, feta, and blueberries in a big bowl. So easy. Even the kids like it! 
If you make the flag on a plate, kick this up a notch and try two types of cheeses,
and strawberries as the middle red stripe!

Making watermelon star cutouts is super fun for the kids. TIP: When they finish making stars, puree the leftover watermelon in a blender to make adult beverages or popsicles.  



This American Flag Cupcake is easy and semi-healthy. Well, there's fruit... 
Yes, Please.



This Star Shaped Iced Shortbread Cookie treat is YUM YUM YUM.  A girlfriend made this for my party last year. SO GOOD. She used premade in the tube circle shortbread cookies, cream cheese frosting and sliced strawberries and blueberries. 



Need something easier? Try these red-white-and-blue brownie bites. All you need is brownie bites, a can or whip cream, blueberries and sliced strawberries.  




HACKS

These Spray Paint Lawn Stars using Construction Marking Paint is genius for temporary fun without destroying the grass! 
LOVE LOVE LOVE THIS!  And, will def be giving it a try this year.







Red, white and Blue Rice tea lights!  Find citronella tea lights too!


The more I stare at this, the more I think I can do it. What do you think? Super easy, or super opportunity for a Pinterest "Nailed It" moment?




BEVERAGES

Red White And Blue SHOTS!


Red White And Blue SANGRIA




For many, many more super awesome ideas, check out my Memorial Day Pinterest board.



5/14/18

Yummy Healthy Homemade Popsicle How-TO



Did you know, you can make superfood popsicles with ingredients you most likely already have in your kitchen?
It's true.

 If you have yogurt, fresh or frozen fruit/greens and/or juice you have AWESOME popsicles waiting to be made. Just pull out the Dixie cups and craft sticks, then pour and freeze.

It's seriously THAT simple!




In fact, not only do I save money by making my own popsicles, I waste less too! I open the produce drawer and start grabbing the things that need to be used; spinach, kale, apples, oranges, strawberries, bananas... Then throw them in the blender with yogurt, juice or coconut water.


My favorite molds, and I know plenty of moms who agree, are mess free and safe for kiddos. Silicone, food grade popsicle molds with lids.




OK, now that the molds are covered, it's time to move on to the super-duper easy part, making the popsicles!

These Peanut Butter Banana Ice Pops are SO simple and great for breakfast on-the-go too! Add Peanut Butter, Bananas, honey, almond milk, vanilla extract and a pinch of Himalayan salt, then blend, pour, freeze, eat!



These Peach Smoothie Popsicles from Brit + Co are a summer staple for me. I LOVE peaches and so does the kid. Sometimes I throw in chocolate shavings for an extra sweet treat!





These layered Berry + Yogurt popsicles are super healthy and festive for Memorial Day!


Tip: To make those fancy layers pour one or two layers in at a time then freeze. Repeat.

Looking for the REAL breakfast of champions? Look no further than these Yogurt Parfait Popsicles.
Mix greek yogurt with a little honey, grab berries and granola and start layering. Add smoothie mix-ins like protein powder or superfood powder for an extra kick.



Hate throwing away leftover melon?  Puree it, then mix in a little coconut water, juice or yogurt to give it a smoother texture.



Can't be bothered to blend? Slice the fruit, stick a stick in it and freeze. Chocolate optional. (As if.)


I'm sure you get the point, Homemade Superfood Popsicles are easy and yummy. Now, go dig in the fridge and make something magical!


Check out all of my superfood and not-so-healthy favorites, including boozy Pop-tails on my Homemade Popsicle Pinterest Board!

Get my favorite molds on Amazon: They double as great on-the-go snack containers too!

                                                                 

5/13/18

In Honor of The 2018 May Primaries Next Week...10 Ways Toddlers and Politicians Are Alike, Especially Around Election Time. #vote


Between the mud-slinging, name calling, lies and full-on diarrhea mouth spewing from political ads in anticipation of next Tuesday's 2018 May Primary, It's like watching toddlers playing together. The similarities just kept mounting. I always try to avoid talking politics, but in this case, I can't help myself. Below are 10 ways toddlers and politicians are alike, especially around election time...




1. They don't play well with others.

2. They like telling on people.

3. They depend on other people to clean up their messes and teach them how to behave.




4. They want to be just like mommy and daddy when they grow up.

5. They like being the center of attention.

6. They like getting dirty.

7. They're shameless.





8. They throw tantrums when they don't get their way.

9. They are constantly changing their mind.

10. You're always left wondering how much of the story to believe.




5/11/18

17 Life Hacks For Mom #HappyMothersDay




I love life hacks. Anything that makes my life easier is awesome in my book. These are my favorite this week. Because I'm always on the hunt for the best life-hacks. Below are 17 I thought I'd share in honor of Mother's Day.  After all, parents need all the life hacks they can get!