Why Bedtime Routines are the New Mommy Hack

Lots of things work for babies that we forget to continue as adults. Fingerpainting, laughing, and crying when you’re sad – those are the basics. Seriously, when you were little we all thought we were good at drawing, right? Babies are seriously onto something. They’re totally comfortable in their own skin, they bravely try new things, and my favorite to re-adopt, they take naps. Enough said. They even notice the seemingly mundane things like how intricate church ceilings are. So why have we abandoned these amazing traits? It’s super cool to take naps, trust me. And to have a bedtime routine. If you find yourself waking up in the middle of the night, or not feeling totally rested in the morning, it may be time to reinstitute the bedtime routine from your childhood. At a certain point it’s time to wind down, log off, hit the X in the right corner, leave your phone charging in another room, take a bath and go to bed.

A few weeks ago I did a little Facebook research on bathing at night, and my mommy circle taught me four great reasons why I should incorporate bathing at night into my bedtime routine.

1. You Sleep better
After a soothing bath in yummy smelling, steaming hot water I can destress and wind down from the day, and I truly sleep better. One night I did just the opposite for Miss C after bathing her in commercial soap that totally irritated her eczema. Using super soothing, gentle and hypoallergenic bath time products is a must. A new one for you to try is The Honest Company’s Baby Bottom Wash. It helps clean those areas that sometimes itch, even for adults (hehehe).

2. More Time in the Morning
I’m like Flash from Zootopia in the morning. No matter how early I wake up, I can’t seem to move fast enough. As the day kicks off and I feel the hustled rush to get out the door, I’ve resorted to writing down a morning list on the bathroom mirror to keep me on track. Having just five more minutes makes a huge difference between feeling super stressed and just regular stressed when I leave the house.

3. Clean Sheets
Many of my mommy friends credited keeping clean sheets as the top reason why they bathe at night. Something about washing off the yuck of the day transforms them into sleeping bunnies.

4. Free of Distractions
Having uninterrupted time is HUGE. This reason alone is compelling enough to bathe at night. If you have a house full of people like me, alone time is sacred and cherished. I anticipate breaking out my bath products and soaking with Netflix to treat myself to “me time” before lights out.

Motherhood - 01.20.171 comment

3 Reasons Why I Nourish His Passions

1. He loves animals. And not just one or two animals, but all animals. We call him the animal encyclopedia at home. He loves aquatic animals so much that we know how may teeth each type of shark has in their mouth. But above all, he loves horses.

2. Horses can heal. And they make him happy, and it’s how he got the nickname Boots. When we moved to Texas from Connecticut he wore cowboy boots for the first twenty-four months – even in 110 degree weather.

3. He’s got the skill. This boy can do twenty push-ups in a row. Not girl push-ups, not wobbly-arm push ups, I’m talking the real deal. He’s strong enough, has the passion, and the focus. I’m not saying he’s going to the equestrian Olympics next year, but watch out for Boots.

Boots, Motherhood, Our Quiver - 01.17.170 comments

We’re Still Dreaming

I was scared, humiliated, and threatened during my first and last stay at Caesar’s Palace in Vegas. I’ll never know if this experience happened because I’m a woman, or because I look young, because I’m black or perhaps even all three. I do know that Dr. King fought with his words and intellect to prevent racial injustice, and unfortunately it’s still a dream of mine that equality will one day exist in this country.

I left the hotel spa around 6pm one evening in October 2014. I walked through the hotel lobby, through the casino and joined co-workers I saw at the round bar near the buffet entrance. They were sitting and chatting at a round table, which doubled as a gambling station, although no one was using the touch screens to gamble. The bartender asked me for ID, and I told him that I did not have it on me since I was coming from the spa, but that I was a guest of the hotel staying in room #4472. He told me that he could not serve me nor could I gamble on the casino floor and that I needed ID. I gave him my name and asked him to look me up in the hotel system because my ID was swiped when I checked in and I believed the hotel has a record of my identification and age.

I continued the conversation with the four male co-workers at the bar, and a few minutes later three security officers approached the bar area because the bartender called for security. I did not know that the bartender was calling security. One of my co-workers became upset that security had been called and reminded them that the company we worked for does extensive business with the hotel. I told my co-worker it was okay and that I would leave. I got up and began walking to my room.

Just before the elevator bank near the Starbuck’s café, I heard someone speaking to me, asking me to leave the hotel. He said I needed to turn left and leave the hotel premises. I turned around, stunned by the fact that three officers had followed me through the casino, through the hotel lobby and towards the elevators. One of the security guard’s name was Walter and he appeared of Hispanic heritage. The second guard was an older black male, and the third an older white male. I told the officers I was a guest of the hotel thinking this would end the matter, which seemingly was escalated severely by the presence of not one, not two, but three officers.

Instead of apologizing and walking away, the officers cornered me, continued asking me for my ID and several other questions, and one guard put his hand on what appeared to be a gun. At this point I was trembling and crying, and scared that the guards would become physically aggressive towards me. I didn’t have my wallet or my cell phone and they were demanding that I leave. I ended the conversation, which was publicly humiliating as guests walked by, and asked if I was excused to return to my room. He finally said yes.

Once in my room I broke down. After speaking to my husband, I remained in my room packing and feeling shocked at what had just occurred. I decided to book an early flight the next morning as I wanted to get as far away from the hotel as soon as possible. I did nothing wrong. I wasn’t aggressive. I wasn’t committing a crime. I wasn’t yelling. But yet, I feared for my life in that hotel. Black lives matter just like mine.

Life - 01.16.170 comments

How to Make Brothers Get Along

Why is the sight of this six-colored toy so intimidating? Every time I see one in a store I cautiously rotate a side, silently squeal with rebellion, and then quickly turn it back before I twist it into an unsolvable state. It’s merely a palm-sized cube, but the interlocking faces pivot to reveal seemingly limitless and certainly baffling color combinations.

Somehow Gadget inherited a joy for the pursuit of defeating this puzzle and received a Rubik’s cube for Christmas. He enjoys tangling the colors and spends hours trying to demystify the secret in order to arrange all six sides into matching faces. So, what better way to annoy your older brother than to mess up his Rubik’s cube? Somehow, the unattended cube found its way into Boot’s hands and then we heard the yell. Gadget was furious. Boots had messed up the mechanics and succeeded in getting under his brother’s skin. It’s the age old tension between brothers. Boots never knows whether to annoy, copy, mimic, or admire. I guess that day he chose infuriate.

Always looking for a teachable moment with these boys, I came up with the great idea that Boot’s punishment was to solve the cube for his brother. He couldn’t leave the table until he figured it out. Well, he didn’t figure it out and this argument stretched out beyond the Christmas break. In an attempt to foster teamwork, Hubby modified the punishment and made the boys work together. Boots looked up the right YouTube video, and Gadget implemented the solution. As they made progress I asked Gadget how did he maintain uniform faces while he twisted the cube so much. His matter-of-fact reply, “algorithms.” Well then, excuse me. I’m sufficiently satisfied and impressed. They figured it out together.

Boots, Children, Gadget, Motherhood - 01.15.170 comments

Daniel Fast Breakfast Taco

Hubby whipped this one up. He sauteed black beans with cumin, salt and red pepper flakes and then blended it in the Vitamix. He hand-mashed avocados, lime juice, salt and cilantro to make the guac, and warmed some oven-roasted fingerlings that were leftover in the fridge. I smeared some of the refried beans and guac on a corn tortilla for a protein-rich and Daniel-friendly breakfast.

Breakfast, Daniel Fast & More, Daniel Fast Recipes - 01.14.170 comments

Hi. I live in North Texas with God, my man, my boys, and a sweet baby girl.
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  • Meet my cowboy with the heart of a lion. He believes all the horses in Texas belong to him. Read more.

    Meet my sweet baby girl. She loves sleeping and I love hearing her coo.
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