The Mommyhood Life – Travel, Crafts, Food, and Florida Family Fun

Month: December 2013

Thanks for the Lesson 2013 ~ 2014 Bring It!

As 2013 comes to a close, I can’t help but look back at all the laughs, all the tears, and most important all the lessons I have learned.
This has been a year full of the highest of highs and the lowest of lows.  So to recap my year I’ll start off with the happiest times!

Brazil Trip 2013!
The hubby had to go down to Brazil for business purposes and so on a whim, we moved our vacation we were thinking about for the winter of 2014 and went as a family in the spring of 2013!  We stayed for a month, enjoyed the beaches, shopping, and food.  Took time to relax on the family farm, enjoyed the crowds in Rio at the Cristo Redentor Statue, and reconnected with family and friends we had greatly missed.
Who doesn’t like Camping on the 4th of July?
We took our usual family camping trip over 4th of July weekend to the campground we used to go to for years when all us cousins were little, Pine Acres.  Most of my fondest memories of summer have always revolved around these summer camping trips.  S’mores, swimming, fishing, dancing, and laughing around a fire till security came.


I turned 30!
Really, like yikes! I don’t feel 30 at all but man I guess I’m all grown up now.  I got to celebrate with a bunch of my family up at Old Orchard Beach for the weekend and it was a blast.
Anthony got to see New York City!
After asking, and asking, and well asking some more, we finally cracked and took the drive down to NYC.  We spent a couple of nights and saw some of the main attractions that were on his list. It was a bit stressful with Aidan and the busy city but in the end, we went home with a very happy boy.
Finally got to see the South!
We made it down to South Carolina to see my brother, this was Antonio’s 10 year wedding Anniversary gift to me, and my amazing man knew exactly what I needed most a mini vacation, awesome, but seeing my brother, the best!  He had moved down there in the Spring and I was devastated that he wasn’t a short ride away anymore so this was a perfect surprise.
We had a Blizzard that gave us snow totals higher than the kids, we finished potty training both twins, We had an awesome Easter egg hunt, Had lots of summer cookouts and Pool fun.
Then to wrap up the year we did all the Fall favorites, apple picking, pumpkin picking, and many farm visits.  Then Christmas brought another visit with my brother and lots of family time.  Looking back, focusing on the good, I must say it was a pretty amazing year and God blessed us in so many ways!
However in the midst of all the fun times, between the vacations and the parties, between the laughing and memories, my family was falling apart.  Or at least what I once thought of to be “family”.
Fight after fight, the drama seemed to just keep making circles throughout the year.  There has been lies and rumors started but some cant see through the dysfunction to understand it.  There have been tears and screaming, name calling and backstabbing.  Yet through it all my loyalty never shook.  I am loyal to a fault (I guess its the Italian in me, or so I’ve heard).  I couldn’t let go of these people I loved, these people I’d lay down my life for, the ones I always thought would be there no matter what.
Unfortunately, I had to learn the hardest lesson yet.
~Family isn’t always… Family~
I can forgive so much and have but when my position in the family was called into question, I learned I had to just let go.  Some words can never be erased, they can be forgiven in time, but never forgotten.  Some words can be spoken in the heat of a fight and destroy an entire family, making the most loyal of the bunch turn and walk away with the knife still in her back.
So when the mention of me not being a “real” family member started, that was what I had to do, with tears in my eyes and the knife in my back, I walked away.
My Dad has been my Dad since I was in diapers, I never felt the need to doubt his love for me, he chose to take the place he has in my life and that’s something that wouldn’t need to be questioned.  Especially by the people who I called my own,  but when a family cant see through their own dysfunction to understand a love that’s not obligated, my Dad and I did the only thing we could think of to stop any doubt and at 30 years old, after the diapers were changed, the stories read, the walk down the aisle, and the grandbabies came, I was officially adopted.
I gained a piece of paper that never really mattered, and lost the “family” I always thought did.
This year I learned so much!
I learned those things your parents tell you when you are growing up, but you shrug off, there true.
I learned to guard my heart and to be loyal based on actions not on position.
I learned I am stronger than I ever imagined.
I learned my heart will always heal with Gods help.
I learned sometimes moving on is harder than fighting.
I learned all I need in this world is God and my Babies.
I learned this to shall pass and I will be OK,

Kate Aspen Lustrous Leaf Copper Finish Fall Bottle Stopper Review

Disclosure: I got this product as part of an advertorial.
Are you looking for a hostess gift or party favors?  I would definitely check out the Kate Aspen website.  They have a wide selection of budget friendly beautiful gift ideas.
I received the Lustrous Leaf Bottle Stopper from Kate Aspen to review.  This beautiful copper toned bottle stopper came in a nice plastic packaging with a ribbon wrapped around the box.  It is a nice heavy weighted stopper that is the perfect accent to a wine table or decorating for the fall season.
I loved the way this stopper added a touch of elegance to the top of my wine bottle.

Are you planning a Fall themed event?  What about next Thanksgiving?  Click here to view some Kate Aspens products that compliment the Lustrous Leaf Bottle Stopper.
This video also shows how beautiful a table setting comes together with these coordinating products.

The bottle stopper retails for just $6.99, and when buying in bulk for favor gifts the price drops depending on quantity.
This is surely a site worth checking out!
I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Merry Christmas 2013!

Merry Christmas to All!  I cant believe the season is coming to an end.  We had a ton of fun, however with the shorter time between Thanksgiving and Christmas this year , it definitely felt like everything was a bit rushed.  We didn’t get to do as much as usual but we still stayed very busy and the kids had a blast.
We saw Santa!
Decorated the House!
Had our annual Family Christmas Party with my Mom’s side of the Family.  As all the cousins are getting married and having babies, it wont be long before we can no longer fit on the couch for a “cousins pic”!

The kids got their Pictures taken at The Picture People!

We baked Cookies for Santa and Cupcakes for Jesus’s Birthday!

My brother came home for a weekend, so we took a family trip out to see the Enchanted Village at Jordan’s Furniture!

We spent Christmas Eve relaxing at my parents house, playing board games with the kids, eating Chinese food, and exchanging gifts!

And THEN…. Santa CAME!!!
I love Christmas morning!  I always go a bit over board, but there is only a short period of time when my little ones will be little and I love the look in there eyes when they come down the stairs and see the presents flowing from under the Christmas tree and knowing they are believing in the magic of Santa.
We spent the rest of the day with my parents eating, building, playing, and just relaxing.
I’m sad the Season is coming to an end, but am thankful for every minute of it!

Holiday Gift Guide 2013 ~ Top 10 Gift Ideas for Children with Autism and Sensory Disorders


It can be difficult shopping for a child with different Sensory needs than the average child.  Here are my top ten gift ideas that Aidan and Lilly both love, despite their sensory issues.

*This Post contains Affiliate Links for your Convenience*
1.  Living Sands, this is a product I recently came across while out shopping and the kids loved it!  Its like being at the beach and feeling the sand without any mess.  This is a great hands on sensory activity.
 2.  Water Table,  We love our water table!  We use it outside in the summer and inside in the winter.  We fill it with water, sand, pasta, and much more.  There is just so many sensory activities that can be done with a water table!
3.  Ikea Ekorre Indoor Swing,  we have this swing in our basement and Aidan uses it constantly.  When he first got diagnosed with Autism we looked into getting an autism swing, but the prices of them were insane.  After some research I found out that this was the alternative that many autism families use, and I have to say it is perfect.  It cuddles Aidan all around which he loves, Lilly doesn’t have to worry about holding on, and it gives them both so much input!
4.  LEGO sets are a great option.  Aidan always loved the pushing them together and pulling them apart sensation.  Now that he is older he’s able to do much more with them.
5. Wooden Peg Puzzles are another great option.  They can be educational and fun.  Plus children are able to do them with an adult or on their own.
6.  iPad, I have to say the item that has impacted my children the most is the iPad.  There are so many Apps available for Autism and Education, its amazing!
 7.  Fun Shape® Electric Massagers, These vibrating bugs are great for sensory input!  We have a handful of them and they are so much fun.
 8.  Weighted Blanket,  I made Aidan’s weighted blanket (tutorial) and I think its a must have!  It helps calm him down at night, we put it on his lap or on his back when he’s playing.  The extra weight seems to basically help him know where his body is and that gives him the ability to relax.
 9.  Play Tunnel,  These are great to help kids burn off energy crawling through them, but there also great for kids to hide in and roll around in.  We also put it on the kids while their standing up and they jump around.  There’s lots of fun to be had with these!
 10.  Indoor Personal Trampoline, This is the trampoline we have for the kids.  Its perfect, it plays music, counts, and plays the ABC’s.  Aidan has so much energy that this helps a lot in the winter to let him burn off some energy, and with Lilly’s low muscle tone the handle bars are perfect for her and she gets to work on building her muscle strength.
*This Post contains Affiliate Links for your Convenience*


Lavington Designs Embroidery ~ Review and Giveaway!

Are you looking for a personalized outfit or gift?  Check out Lavington Designs on Etsy!  Lilly received this beautiful outfit for this review and she was thrilled!  She loved that her name was on her shirt and what little girly girl doesn’t like a petty skirt?
The embroidery design is impeccable.  I was very pleased with the quality and the design is adorable!  The Petty skirt is also full and soft.  Lilly was happy it twirled well and “isn’t itchy” at all!
Lilly is wearing the “A Christmas Gift” Outfit
 This Outfit sells for $55, which I think for a custom embroidered outfit on Etsy is very reasonable.
Check out more of Lavington Designs products on:

Enter to win your own Lavington Designs Embroidered Onesie!
This is a Beautiful Fairy Design Onesie in size 12 Months
Giveaway Ends: December 23 2013, at 11:59 p.m

a Rafflecopter giveaway
Disclaimer: I received Lilly’s outfit and the Onesie free of charge to facilitate this review and giveaway.  All opinions are 100% my own.

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