Bramell, Party of Five: February 2016

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Sharing My Faves...continued.

Note: I am not being paid or compensated in any way for this post. These are products that my family uses and we pay for. This is a voluntary personal product review.

Last month, I wrote a post about the chemical free, non-toxic products that we use from Melaleuca. I told you about my Top 3 favorite products. Well, since that post I've had a lot of questions from you guys about the company, the products and what else the company offers. If you want more information, you can google it or refer back to my first post. Or just send me an email! I'm not going to be all salesperson on you, I just want to share what I know.

I wanted to post again to show you some more of the household products that we regularly use. 

Essential Oils:  Now, I'll admit that I was late getting on the essential oil bandwagon. I just didn't buy into what everyone else said about them. But once Melaleuca started to offer them, I thought it was worth a try. I use them a lot now! And some of you already heard my story about how using Bergamot oil has helped with Girl Twin's molluscum contagiosum skin condition.

Laundry products: I love the way the liquid detergent makes our clothes smell! This is a very concentrated liquid, so this size bottle will do 96 loads. The other item is a stain remover, which obviously I need. I am excited about trying the new OXI boost that is coming in my next order.

Kids' bath products:  We use the Koala Pals bath soap and shampoo for all the kids; it's very mild and doesn't burn their eyes.

If you want to learn how to switch out the harsh, chemical-laden products you are currently using with these great products, just let me know! I can get you connected.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Conversation With My Kids

Girl Twin has always been the kid we knew we'd have to worry about. It's no secret; she's always up to something. I'm also fearful that the child doesn't have a filter. I've already apologized in advance to her kindergarten teacher, just in case.

She also is guilty of filling up my phone with selfies. As you can see, she loves the camera.

One thing that has surprised me is that Girl Twin has been letting me snuggle and rock her before bed again. One night when we were snuggling, we had this lovely exchange--

Me:  Sis, I sure love you.

Her:  (looking deep into my eyes) Can I touch your eyeball?

Ummm, no.

Then, when she got off the bus after school I noticed that her face was super red and flushed.

Me:  Why is your face so red?

Her: I attacked a kid.

WHAT?  I never did get the story on that one. Sheesh.

At least we aren't bored around here, right?

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Have a Heart! Go Red on Friday!

Did you know that February is national Heart Month? Not just because it's the month of love...but the month of healthy heart awareness, too! 

Here are some interesting heart facts from my friends at the American Heart Association, where I'm a social media ambassador for them. Coincidentally, heart health and stroke awareness is our #NWARKCares blogger group focus for this month as I'll be getting lots of social media help from my bloggy friends on this one.

  • Heart disease is the No. 1 killer of women, and is more deadly than all forms of cancer combined. 

  • When it comes to beating heart diseases and stroke, change can be the cure.  

  • Cardiovascular disease knows no borders. Cardiovascular disease, including heart disease and stroke, remains the leading global cause of death with more than 17.3 million deaths each year. That number is expected to rise to more than 23.6 million by 2030. 

How can you get involved in Heart Month? 

One way is very easy! Tomorrow, February 5, join me with the American Heart Association and Northwest Arkansas Bloggers to wear red to show your support for the movement to end heart disease and stroke in women. It’s not just a man’s disease! Learn more: 

Post a selfie of yourself wearing red on Friday and join the awareness! Use hashtags #NWAheart and #NWAGoRed

Here's the link for more Go Red information.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

My Kids are Flipping Out {sponsored post}

This is a sponsored post. I am currently serving as a blog ambassador for The Jones Center, who has compensated me for such. The photos and opinions are real, and are my own. This is a reflection of my family's personal experience as members of the facility.

My girls have decided that they would like to give gymnastics a try. This makes me happy for several reasons, one being that I waited until I was 12 or 13 to start gymnastics and it was too late for me to be successful. I was always sorry that I never learned basic tumbling skills; I never even learned to do a cartwheel. Boo!

As we've discussed the possibility over the last few weeks, I told the girls that we'd go check out the gymnastics class at The Jones Center. Since we go there a lot already, I knew that they recently started offering both dance and gymnastics classes. 

I'm happy to report that we went to visit a class last week and the girls loved it! There are about a dozen kids in a class and it's beginner level, right where my girls need to be. The kids were all welcoming to my girls and the instructor was very patient and kind. After one night of testing the waters, I came right home to sign them up online. For the record, Boy Twin chose to stick with soccer this spring, so he won't have time for gymnastics, too.

We are going to be in the Thursday evening classes. Girl Twin is in the age 5-7 class, which meets first, and Big Sis will be in the age 8+ class afterward. The classes are very affordable for anyone--especially for families with multiple kids. The cost is only $25/month per kid, which I can totally justify. I sat with another mom who was watching her 10-year-old twins practice. She said the same thing---The Jones Center really is a blessing to mamas who need to enroll more than one kid in class. Yes!

Another cool feature of the gymnastics class at The Jones Center? They offer multiple nights for convenience (even some daytime classes for younger kids) and you sign up online. You enroll each month. This means if you get busy during the summer and need to take off a  month, then you aren't stuck paying. Or, some kids want to play spring sports and take off gymnastics--no harm done! Just come back and sign up for the month that you want to participate. I love this convenience! 

Here's the link for more information about gymnastics classes at The Jones Center in Springdale. Check it out if you are interested. 

Monday, February 1, 2016

Conversation With My Kids

With me not working right now, I'm spending a lot more time with the kids. I've really enjoyed it and I know they have, too. Mostly because they tell me, and often. It actually breaks my heart...they like that I'm home when they get home from school. We have time to play before dinner and not rush around like we do when I'm working.

It's funny how they are each reacting to me being out of work. I try not to make a big deal out of it, because I don't want them to be worried about the "grown up" things like money and bills. They know I'm looking for a job and know when I have interviews lined up.

Girl Twin has been the funniest about it. Every day when she comes in the door from school, she does the same thing. Literally, throws down her backpack and comes to ask me, "Did you get a job today?" Seriously, the very first thing out of her mouth. I can't figure out if she's genuinely asking because she cares or if she's just trying to keep me accountable. 

Big Sis has been a little less obvious about it. Some days she asks and some days she doesn't seem to care. One day she came in and looked at me funny, "Where are you going," she asked. When I said nowhere, she said, "But you are dressed." Now, I know that I've slacked off a little, but I do get dressed most days. Thanks, kid.

Boy Twin isn't exempt from this discussion, either. In fact, he'll always tell me just how he's feeling. One night last week when I was tucking him into bed he said, "Mom, I want you to stay fired." When I asked him why, he said, "Because I like for you to be home with us." Awww, man. Talk about a broken heart. 

These sweet kids. Just when I think they aren't paying attention to things, they show me that they are. So perceptive and yet a tiny bit judgmental. We will survive...

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