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

Month: January 2016

Eating Healthier On The Go with McDonald’s New Chicken Sausage! #Giveaway

The busiest time of day for us is usually in the morning, 7 days a week we are hustling and bustling in the am.  With the school and work rush all week, Saturdays started early with dance classes and sports games, then church on Sunday, we only get to sleep in and lounge around on holidays.  
Plus because I love my bed, I rarely plan out enough time for breakfast in the middle the busyness.  This means breakfast is likely on the go, especially on the weekends.  
With my resolution to try to live a healthier lifestyle this year, my on the go breakfast has been tricky.  I want to find something filling and delicious, without spending all my calories for the day.
Before the new year, my go-to breakfast was always a sausage biscuit.  I used to eat these for breakfast every weekend with my Nana growing up, and they are still a favorite for me.  However with the 190 calories and 18 grams of fat in the sausage patty alone, I tried (not so successfully) to make better choices.
You know how hard it is to give up a food you love, so it just wasn’t happening, and I was feeling guilty each weekend.
That was until last week when McDonald’s sent me information about their new chicken sausage!  I’ll admit I was skeptical at first, this was the breakfast that had me out of bed before 10 o’clock as a teenager to make it to the old breakfast cut off.  Teenagers today will never know the feeling of missing that cut off by 2 minutes, but man it is great to be able to order a Sausage McMuffin whenever I want.
  However I need to make healthier choices and hoped McDonald’s was working their typical magic when providing a sausage patty with only 80 calories and 5 grams of fat.
They did it, oh my Yummyness!  
I had all three kids at Children’s Hospital for appointments last week.  We left home when the sun was coming up and spent 5 hours rushing from doctor to doctor.  Once we got out of medical mayhem, I couldn’t wait to try a the new chicken sausage.  It tasted exactly like the sausage I was eating all these years that had more than triple the grams of fat.
The chicken sausage also passed the kids taste test!  After 5 hours of whining, I got to sit down in a booth of quietness, with happy and full kids.
McDonald’s began serving the chicken sausage on January 18th at restaurants in New England and Albany, NY (excluding Fairfield County, CT) and is an option for all breakfast sandwiches and platters.
Ready to try the Deliciousness?
Enter to win a $25 Arch Card and 4 Coupons for Free Chicken Sausage Samples.
Giveaway Ends: February 3, 2016
Disclosure:  This is a sponsored post, as always all opinions are 100% my own.

Make Time for You in 2016 by Finding Your Fringe Hours!

I was provided with The Fringe Hours materials at no cost to review for this post.  However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
Happy 2016 everyone!  I can’t believe we are already midway through January.  I love this time of year, while I certainly hate the weather in New England in January, I love the fresh start rhythm that is in the air.

While I haven’t necessarily made any New Years resolutions this year, I do have countless goals and aspirations for 2016 and beyond.  
My health took a nose dive during most of 2015.  My kidneys decided that I should be in pain for over 6 months when an infection ended up being resistant to over 7 doses of different antibiotics.  Then with the stress of this, combined with my increasing back pain from the extra weight gain, it caused numerous fibro flair ups.  Needless to say, I didn’t get a lot of what I had hoped to done in 2015.  
As we range in the New Year, I looked around at my house that was in shambles from shotty cleaning, realized my inbox was exploding with hundreds of emails that needed to be sorted, and lets not discuss the brassy color my hair had become from not maintaining it.
I felt like I failed at 2015!  However 2016 will be better, no it will be great!
I have taken better control of my health by meeting with different specialists.  I have gotten back involved with the kids schools, and am back to being that feared “Autism Mom” that knows her children’s rights and holds the system accountable.  I have spent everyday cleaning and decluttering.  And best of all I have gotten back to being the fun mom who bakes, crafts, and snuggles.  I am feeling the old me coming back and its only 2 weeks into the year.
However with all these aspects of my life falling back on track, I have noticed one thing that was still falling through the cracks, Me.  At the end of a long and busy day packed with school meetings, cleaning, grocery shopping, and activities with the kids, suddenly realizing you hadn’t done anything all day to refresh your own spirit, can be draining.
Luckily right as my soul was needing a little more fulfillment, DaySpring sent me The Fringe Hours book set.
Written by author and blogger Jessica Turner, The Fringe Hours has opened my eyes to ways I can find extra time throughout my day.  Along with giving me a new perspective on self care.
Jessica is a wife, mom, Christian, blogger, homemaker, friend, and regular woman, all the things I juggle in my own life.  Her knowledge, stories, and ideas are relate-able and her advice feels attainable.
Sense reading this I have given up un-fulfilling time wasters, like my bejeweled addiction and limited my social media time.  I have also learned to turn down activities and obligations that I are not priorities and don’t bring me joy.  Instead I have been able to schedule time to get my hair done, read some of the books I have been piling up for “some day”, and have been getting a healthy amount of sleep. 
The Fringe Hours has four parts:
1. Explore
2. Discover
3. Maximize
4. Live Well
There are numerous fill ins and notes sections through out the book.
Jessica Turner also wrote My Fringe Hours, which asks more thought provoking questions with room for reflecting.  The best part is the time tracker that allows you to keep track of where you spend your time.  There is also a free printable version of the time tracker here.
Ready to learn how to find more Fringe Hours in your day?  The Fringe Hours eBook is currently on sale for $1.99 on Amazon!

Learning to Embrace the Adventure with Norm Of The North + Fandango Gift Card Giveaway!

This post was sponsored by Lionsgate as part of an Influencer Activation for Influence Central.
My family is very excited for Lionsgate’s release of Norm of the North on January 15th!  We are a big movie watching family, whether at home by the fire or as an outing to the theater, we love sitting back and enjoying a great family movie together.

While planning our activities for the kids long weekend this week,  I pulled up the Norm of the North preview and it was an instant hit with the kids. 


 
Lilly was jumping around trying to “Shake her Bear Thing” while Aidan immediately saw Norm the polar bear dancing on his head and thought it was the coolest thing ever.  So of course he had to try!

Norm of the North tells the story of Norm, a talkative, lovable polar bear who doesn’t quite fit in at home in the Arctic.  However when his home is endanger of being overtaken by developers, he ventures out to NYC with a few helpful friends by his side, to take on the big apple and save the day.

This film tells a great story about facing fears, taking chances, and the amazing rewards that can come from stepping outside our comfort zone.

This is an incredible message for all children as they face challenges and new experiences growing up.
It especially resonates with my family this year as we plan a move from Massachusetts to Florida.  
While I am sure my children are a little nervous and apprehensive about leaving family, friends and the everyday normal they’ve always known.
We are trying to focus on the new adventures we will be able to take.  Highlighting the places we will be able to explore and the idea of living closer to grandparents and their uncle brings them excitement and helps them embrace the experience.
I can’t wait to use this fun movie as a talking point with the kids about how brave Norm was when he stepped out of his comfort zone!

What adventures have taken your family out of their comfort zone?

I-C is hosting a contest and you can enter to win one of 5 $100 Fandango gift cards to purchase tickets to see Norm of the North in theaters!

The contest closes Monday, January 21, 2015.
I-C will randomly select 5 winners from all program entries and will handle fulfillment of the winning prizes.

Cheeky Monkey ~ The Perfect First Peanut Food for Babies!

I participated in this event on behalf of Wendy’s Bloggers for Cheeky Monkey. I received Cheeky Monkey products to facilitate my review.
Like all moms, I am always on the hunt for healthy snacks that my kids will enjoy.  Nutritious and yummy snacks can be hard to find especially ones that are convenient and easy to eat on the go with our busy schedules.
  I was intrigued when I was invited to try Cheeky Monkey Peanut Butter Puffs last month at Big City Moms “Biggest Baby Shower” in Boston.  I had never heard of these delicious peanut butter puffs and was excited to taste them and to learn more about the interesting health and nut allergy information that goes along with them.

My first thought when tasting Cheeky Monkey was, these taste great!  The texture reminded me of a cheese curl and the taste was similar to peanut butter toast, which happens to be a favorite in my home.  So Cheeky Monkey definitely passed my taste test, and the individual packages make them an easy snack on the go, solving my busy mommy problem.

Best of all Cheeky Monkey is a healthy and nutritious snack!
100% Organic and Non GMO
Gluten-Free
No added sugar
Not fried
Contains plant based protein and healthy fats

Knowing all this along with the taste my kids love, has made Cheeky Monkey a go-to snack in my home. 

However the taste and convenience are not what makes Cheeky Monkey so unique. Cheeky Monkey was created to be the prefect “first peanut food” for babies.  
I remember years ago, being advised to stay away from peanuts when my children were infants.  However doctors are learning more and more about nut allergies and now studies are showing that 6 grams a week of peanut protein can reduce the risk of developing a peanut allergy.

Now that we are learning that early introduction to peanuts can reduce the risk of developing a peanut allergy, we need to find the safest food option for introducing peanuts into or babies diets.  Cheeky Monkey has done this by creating an snack that is easy to hold for self feeding and also melts in the mouth for safe eating.

Learn more about introducing peanut foods early on Cheeky Monkey’s website.  Also connect with them on Facebook.

Ready to try Cheeky Monkey?
Enter to win a great prize pack!
Giveaway:
Giveaway Ends:  January 25th, 2016

Prize Pack Includes:
12 full-size bags of Cheeky Monkey
1 Cheeky Monkey t-shirt
1 Cheeky Monkey onesie
1 Cheeky Monkey mug
One winner per household, email address, or home address. If you have won this prize on another blog you are ineligible to win again. Winners must have a U.S.-based address to receive their prize.