It’s the last official weekend of Summer and I’m hardcore celebrating. And by hardcore celebrating, I mean lighting my @raedunn fall scented candles, binge watching Netflix and going to bed before 10pm. 🙌🏻 Remember when our nights didn’t even start until 10pm? I would dance all night, get back home with just enough time to shower and change before heading out to work. AND I could work a full 8 hours without ever feeling the fact that I hadn’t slept in more than 24 hours... Now I’m unable to function if someone wakes me up 15 minutes early. Getting old is awesome. .
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#letterboardquotes #letterboard #letterboards #letterboardlove #letterboardfun #farmhouselove #farmhousestyle #letterboardquote #magnoliastyle #howyouhome #makehomeyours #pocketofmyhome #modernfarmhousestyle #modernfarmhousedecor #ighome #modernfarmhouse #howwedwell #homegoodsfinds #raedunnfinds #raedunn #homegoods #tjmaxxfinds #raedunnfinds #targetdoesitagain #targetdollarspot #raedunnfall #pumpkinseason #pumpkinspice #homegoodshappy

It’s the last official weekend...

I read something the other day on Facebook that said that the song that was number 1 on your 14th birthday, defines your life. I googled it, excited to find a message, a sign (I’m a sucker for that sort of thing). Instead, I found it was “Cream” by Prince. 😐 Cream? What does that mean? Ice cream? Coffee creamer? 
So I looked it up... and read the lyrics. "Cream" was meant to mean “cream of the crop”. There are lyrics like “everything you do is success” and my favorite part... “Do your dance
Why should you wait any longer?
Take a chance
It could only make you stronger”  Message received, Prince. Message received. 
What song was number one on your 14th birthday?
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#coffeetime☕ #frenchvanilla #pumpkinspice #pumpkineverything #pumpkinspicelatte #pumpkinpie #raedunnlove #raedunnfinds #raedunn #raedunnmugs #raedunnclay #tjmaxxfinds #tjmaxx #homegoodshappy #homegoodsfinds #amazonfinds #marshallsfinds #marshalls #homegoods #coffeeholic #coffeebar #coffee_time #coffeetable #coffeecoffeecoffee #fall🍁 #prince #songlyrics

I read something the other...

This girl lost another tooth last week. I’ve been waiting for this toothless smile since she knocked her other one out last year. Unfortunately, it’s not going to last long because her adult tooth is already growing in 😭. (Zoom in to see) Yesterday I noticed both of her front-bottom teeth are peeking out behind her baby teeth too. Does anyone know how to slow down time. A button? A phone call? Maybe a time machine? My baby isn’t a baby anymore. Cue the tears. Have you celebrated any milestones with your kids recently?
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#losttooth #targetfinds #targetclearance #targetdoesitagain #targetdeals #targetstyle #slowdown #growing  #growinguphispanic #growingup #smile😊 #smiles 
#momblog #mommyblog #momblogger #mombloggers #bloggermom #mommybloggers #momswhoblog #mommyblogger #mamablogger #momsofinstagram

This girl lost another tooth...

I don’t get bouquets of flowers for no reason…. But I do appreciate the flowers that grow by our mailbox, like this one. And it made me realize something this morning.  I’m over it. 
I’m over comparing my life to other people’s lives on social media.
My house might not be as fancy. 
My wardrobe is not as expensive. 
I don't apply makeup as well or even at all most days.
I don’t have beautiful, long flowing hair.
I don’t drive a car that’s worth bragging about. 
We don’t go on lavish trips around the world. 
I don’t carry loads of money in designer handbags. 
Does that make me less of a person? 
Does that make me less of an influencer? 
No. It makes me a regular 40-something Mom who has chosen to open up and share our lives on social media.  It makes me someone who has built this hobby of photography and writing into a business that has solely supported my family for a year and a half. 
I’m proud of that. 
I’m proud that I’m not a follower.
I’m proud that I have worked hard for what I’ve achieved.
I’m proud of influencers like me who are unapologetically themselves.  What are you proud of? .
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#inspiringquotes #inspirations #inspiredaily #motivationquotes #motivational #motivating #inspirationalquotes #womenempowerment #womenempoweringwomen #empoweringwomen #empowerment #influencers #bloggersofinstagram #bloggermom #momtruth #truthhurts

I don’t get bouquets of...

F O U R T E E N. 
What do you give your oldest daughter when she turns 14? Well, when you’re me, you write her a poem and post it on the blog for the world to see. Head over to read it and let me know what you think. Then, help me wish Lucia the best 14th birthday ever 👇🏻👇🏻
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#birthdaygirl #birthdays #birthday🎂 #birthdayqueen #birthdaylove #birthdaygifts #birthdayfun #birthdaygirl👑 #birthdaygift #birthdaygirls #fourteen #teenage #teengirl #poemsofinstagram #poetryofinstagram

F O U R T...

It was just after Iyla's third birthday. She seemed to be on track, at least according to the pediatrician's checklist. She could follow instructions, name most familiar things, knew her first name, spoke in sentences and could carry a conversation, though she was hard to understand most of the time. We enrolled her in preschool that year and she was a little social butterfly. But as that school year went on, her teachers started to notice that she was struggling to get her words out. Most people that know Iyla today, have no idea that she was in speech therapy classes for two years. They have no idea that I fought it for almost 6 months and that I felt a tremendous guilt about it, because I thought it was my fault that she was stuttering as badly as she was. Today on the blog, I’m sharing the mistakes I made, in hopes that if you are ever in this situation, you take advantage of early intervention. .
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#speechtherapy #stuttering #speechies #speechpathology #earlyintervention #earlyinterventionspeech #earlyinterventionprogram #publicschool #oldnavy #oldnavystyle #minted #amazon #amazonfinds #pridesocks #letthembelittle #kidsplay #rollerskating #rollerskates #mommoments

It was just after Iyla's...

There are two types of kids. 1) The kid who wants to eat the same thing every single day of the week, sometimes more than one time per day and 2) The kid who loves something one day and then hates it the next. #ad Which type of kid do you have? Or, are your kids like mine and bounce back and forth between the two? Either way, there is a way to make lunches more fun for kids. I'll let you in on a little secret... creating fun lunches is more fun for us too! This week, we created our first character, Inspector Caper Eyes. Head to the blog for more details! Plus, learn why we choose @JuicyJuiceUSA new better-for-you options, which are packed with functional benefits with juicy flavor that parents can feel great about serving to their kids.
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#foodvideo #recipevideo #juicyjuice #videostar #videoviral #videooftheday #funvideo #targetfinds #targetdeals #targetdoesitagain #walmart #walmartfinds #tjmaxxfinds #tjmaxx #marshallsfinds #marshalls #homegoodsfinds #homegoodshappy #homegoods #yummyyummy #yummyfood #familyfriendly #familyfriendlymeals #familylife #funfood #kidslunchbox

There are two types of...

Remember I told you guys about our day dates now that the girls are #backtoschool? Well, we’ve really been enjoying them. #sponsored We walk, talk and laugh (a lot). Have you seen our IGTV yet? It’s a cheesy, beautiful video of what our relationship is like. I love that we’re able to connect and that we can make the time in our day to focus on our relationship and our health. Since we have three daughters, it’s even more important to go the extra mile when it comes to taking care of ourselves. These awesome @amazfit watches help us with that. I have the Amazfit Verge and Super Dad has the Amazfit Bip. They are lightweight, have app notifications and track your daily activity, your heart rate and so much more. The Amazfit Bip comes with a 30-day battery life and the Verge comes with Alexa built-in and you can make and receive phone calls through the watch. We can track our activity, sleep and heart rate and hold each other accountable for better decisions, when it comes to fitness and health. Visit rcl.ink/UyB to check them out and make sure to take advantage of the sale they’re currently having. No discount code necessary! What are you doing to get back to you? .
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#dates #dateyourspouse #dateyourhusband #laughs #lovethislife #qualitytime #healthier #healthcare #fitnesslife #fitnessfun #fitstagram #exercisemotivation #smartwatch #smartwatches #techy #backtoyou #selfcarethreads #selfcarematters #parkrun #couplesgoals #coupleshoot

Remember I told you guys...

Take me back to the time when all I had to do was color in the lines, learn my abc’s and take a long nap everyday. Why didn’t we appreciate what we had back then? .
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#Letterboardquotes #letterboard #letterboards #letterboardlove #letterboardfun #farmhouselove #farmhousestyle #letterboardquote #magnoliastyle #howyouhome #makehomeyours #pocketofmyhome #modernfarmhousestyle #modernfarmhousedecor #ighome #modernfarmhouse #howwedwell #homegoodsfinds #raedunnfinds #raedunn #homegoods #homegoodshappy #targetdoesitagain #targetdeals #raedunnclay #raedunnlove #adultingishard #adulting

Take me back to the...

#AD Our girls love nature, so this weekend, we headed to a local nature preserve for a little animal watching, walking and family time. We always pack the essentials when we're heading out in this Florida heat, including snacks, sunblock and @smartwater, because we know how important it is to stay hydrated. We love smartwater® because it's purified water made using vapor distillation, similar to the way water is purified in nature. It's available in 700mL and 1L bottles. Now through 9/15, you can save $2.75 off at Sam's Club, so stock up! (limit 10 per member) https://lnk2.io/abYC5gD #kidsfitness #fitnessfun #daddyslittlegirl #natureseekers #naturephotos #exercisemotivation #familyfitness #fitnessforlife #qualitytime #bestdad #bestdayever #bestfriendgoals #fatherdaughter #dadofgirls #smartwater #hydrate #hydration #drinkwater #marshalls #marshallsfinds

#AD Our girls love nature,...

Hefty® Celebrates Strong Moms

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We partnered with Hefty® to celebrate strong Moms, in honor of Mother’s Day! Here is a little bit about the lady who taught me that no matter how uncertain life can be, our strength and love will get us through anything.

I was 9 years old, sitting in front of my school nearly an hour after the final bell rang. All of the other kids had already gone home and I was still waiting for my Nana to pick me up.  It was the days before cell phones, so if you couldn’t get someone on their house phone, you just had to leave them a message and wait.  I was scared and imagining the worst, when I finally spotted her car pulling into the entrance.  I didn’t know if I wanted to yell at her or hug her, I just knew that I was finally going home.  As I got into the car, she apologized and told me that she had won the jackpot at bingo and had to stay a little later to sign some paperwork.  Then she handed me $100 and told me I had earned it for being so patient.  Was it a bribe? Maybe… but it was $100 and I was 9, so I gladly accepted it and got on with my day.

While I was so angry at the time, I look back on it now and laugh.  She was always so honest with me.  Sometimes too honest, like the time I went to see her after proudly losing 10 lbs and she said “I thought you were on a diet? You look the same to me.”

My Nana was one of a kind and a no-nonsense lady who was just as strong as she was loving.  While there was so much to love about her, the trait I adored most was her sense of humor.  She could take any situation, no matter how sad or scary and make me laugh.  It wasn’t something she tried to do either.  She had no idea she was funny… she just was.  Sometimes it was embarrassing, sometimes it was shocking, but we still look back on it and laugh because it’s who she was and she was never afraid of being herself.

She grew up in a time when you moved out of your parents home only to move in with your husband.  She never knew what it was like to live alone or take care of herself.  In 2004, my Grandpa passed away.   It was the first time, in her almost 80 years that she was going to live alone.  While we should have worried how she would handle it, we knew that she was going to rock the single life.  Sure enough, not long after she moved into her new place, she was making friends, being a social butterfly and having a blast.

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When we were asked to partner with Hefty® to celebrate strong Moms, I couldn’t wait to celebrate the lady that was there for me until her final days, even if she was a little late every once and a while. I mean, there was usually money in it for me, so…

All kidding aside, my Nana taught me so much about love, parenting and not taking life too seriously.  It’s those important lessons that I will pass down to my daughters.  As I watch them each grow into strong, independent young ladies, I know that our Nana is watching us from up above, laughing at our stumbles and applauding when we get back up again and tackle the situation like a boss (just like she would).

I love that Hefty® is encouraging us to celebrate our strong Moms. Check out this commercial staring John Cena and his Mom, Carol Cena, another ultra strong Mom:

Hefty® Ultra Strong™ trash bags offer “Hefty Hefty Hefty” strength at a price that fits in our “Wimpy Wimpy Wimpy” budget. Their Triple Action Technology resists tears, punctures and leaks and their break resistant drawstring helps to prevent the bag from falling inside of the can.  While we can’t choose our Moms, you can choose your trash bags.  So why not choose Hefty®, the brand that gives you a 100% satisfaction guarantee, or your money back?!

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What makes your Mom ultra strong?  Comment below and let us know!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Hefty®.

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40 Comments
  • Berlin
    June 2, 2018

    I haven’t tried any Sas shoes. I hope I couls find a pair or two here in our place. I like how you described it. As if you’re walking in the air. Like that feeling.

  • Angela Ricardo
    May 28, 2018

    We totally love and trust Hefty. Great brand, superb quality on products your story with your Nana is very sweet and heartwarming. PS: your daughter is an absolute sweetheart!

  • Heather
    May 16, 2018

    I love John Cena for this campaign! My mom taught me to be strong too and now I have two daughters of my own. My oldest daughter is very physically strong and it makes me so proud knowing they are growing up as leaders too.

  • Jenni LeBaron
    May 16, 2018

    I love your story about your Nana! She sounds like she was a super quick-witted lady. I had not seen that Hefty commercial yet, but it’s super funny!

  • Rose Ann Sales
    May 16, 2018

    This is such a nice post and I enjoyed reading it. A mother needs to be recognized even in a simple way. They do a lot from us and we can’t count them and I am so happy that my mother is a strong woman that never give up easily most especially in times of troubles.

  • Esther Irish
    May 16, 2018

    I love that Hefty celebrates strong moms! My mom is the best and so strong. She is caring for my dad right now in his sickness.

  • Ruth I.
    May 16, 2018

    My mom is a strong woman. She did her best to keep the family together everything was falling apart. Love this tribute!

  • Mar
    May 16, 2018

    Happy Mother’s Day! At a young age, you really don’t appreciate what your mom did and does for you. Now that I’m a mom myself, I realize just how much I owe her and how strong she is.

  • Brittany
    May 15, 2018

    So sweet, sounds like you had a great role model to look up to

  • Julie
    May 15, 2018

    Love your story of your Nana! My grandma was the strongest person I’ve ever known!!

  • sara lafountain
    May 15, 2018

    Your Nama is so gorgeous and boy did she teach you a lot. these memories are precious and you will pass them on to your children and grandchildren.

  • Jeanette
    May 15, 2018

    Growing up with a strong woman influence is great! I think that it helps me stay strong with so many things! I LOVE the John Cena commercial it always makes me laugh!

  • GiGi Eats
    May 15, 2018

    Aw! I adore this tribute!!! <3

  • Natalie
    May 15, 2018

    Your Nana sounds amazing! It sounds like she had such a zest and persistance!

  • Stacie
    May 15, 2018

    I love this so much! Our moms shape us, and we shape our daughters. And on and on it goes. That’s why it’s so important to be strong for our kids.

  • Marysa
    May 15, 2018

    It’s great that you had such a great lady in your life. Thanks for sharing such a sweet story about her. It’s such a wonderful thing to have a bond like that with a family member.

  • Ann Snook-Moreau
    May 15, 2018

    My mom is strong because she doesn’t care what anyone thinks of her. She knows who she is and is proud of it!

  • Elizabeth Voyles
    May 15, 2018

    I love this! I too had a grandmother who taught me what it means to be a strong mom and a strong woman. Thank you for sharing about your nana, she sounds like a special lady!

  • Shoshana Sue
    May 15, 2018

    Wow, I am just amazed at how your daughter looks so much like a professional model! Seriously she should be the face of Hefty for kids 🙂
    Your nana sounds like an amazing woman. Pretty sure she read this post with pride from above

  • Raina
    May 15, 2018

    I loved reading this sweet story about your Nana! Great share. Here’s to raising strong girls!

  • Ricci
    May 14, 2018

    Your Nana sounds like an amazing lady!! I’m glad you had such an amazing role model to look up to!

  • Heather
    May 14, 2018

    What a sweet story about your grandma. It was definitely a different time back then. Things have changed so much now I wonder how our kids will manage when they step out on their own. I’m scared for them. I’m trying to prepare them as best as I can though.

  • Jenn@Engineermommy
    May 14, 2018

    That was a lovely story about your grandmother and a great message. Moms have to be so strong.

  • Alison Rost
    May 14, 2018

    Oh what a beautiful tribute to your lovely grandmother. She sounds like an inspiration and definitely a woman worth recognizing! Hefty’s campaign is awesome! I love it!

  • Carol Cassara
    May 14, 2018

    Mothers deserve to be celebrated and recognized for everything that they do and have sacrificed. I am with Hefty for doing this! I wish I could have known you nana. She’s such a lovely woman.

  • Karen Morse
    May 14, 2018

    Definitely love the fact that Hefty is celebrating strong moms. They are amazing for what they do for us kids and for the whole family. I think your nana is amazing!

  • valmg @ Mom Knows It All
    May 14, 2018

    My Mom is a big part of my life. She and my Dad are the only ones that have always been there for me no matter what. I cannot imagine my life without her.

  • Kita Bryant
    May 14, 2018

    Moms have to be strong! They got strong kids they are needing to raise!

  • Mimi
    May 14, 2018

    The facts you shares really gave me a good lol! Your nana sounds amazing, I wish I had more time with mine, she got alzheimer when I was 2 or 3 so I have no memories with her

  • Paula @ I'm Busy Being Awesome
    May 14, 2018

    Growing up which such a strong woman must have been amazing! Your nana was hilarious!

  • Joanna Everyday Made Fresh
    May 14, 2018

    I love John Cena and that commercial. It’s great to have a such a great company behind mom’s.

  • candy
    May 14, 2018

    We use hefty trash bags and they are a great product. I have and recognize many strong women that have been in my life.

  • wendy
    May 14, 2018

    Moms are super strong-we have to be right? Love that Hefty is doing this and we use this brand at our house.

  • Melissa Chapman
    May 14, 2018

    Your Grandma sounds like a great lady and a lot of fun. I miss my mom on Mother’s Day and it turns out to be a tough day for me and my sisters.

  • Ashley
    May 14, 2018

    I am all for celebrating strong moms. Love the pic of your daughter. You are raising her to be a warrior 🙂

  • Sarah Bailey
    May 14, 2018

    What an awesome thing for Hefty to be doing! Mum’s definitely need celebrating all they can, as they are all amazing people.

  • Amber Myers
    May 14, 2018

    I love this! I also have a headstrong Nana–she’s still with us and is nearly 97. It’s always wonderful when there are strong women in the family.

  • Alli Smith
    May 14, 2018

    What a sweet story about your Nana! My mom was a very strong woman and she was such a giver. She was always cooking for people that were experiencing grief, etc. I love being able to remember all the good times we had together.

  • chubskulit rose
    May 14, 2018

    I love that commercial of John Cena. Your daughter is quite a model, love her pose flexing the muscles!

  • Tasheena
    May 14, 2018

    Happy Mother’s Day! I really enjoyed reading this post. Raising three rambunctious post made my mom ultra strong.

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An Interview with Sheryl and Carrie Berk, Authors of Ask Emma
Hefty® Celebrates Strong Moms

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