Those Last Firsts

When J and I got married we knew we wanted to start trying for a baby right away. We wanted a family but we weren’t sure how many children we wanted yet. I was pretty set on having a large family while J was set on just two or three. I think it’s evident who won that battle!

I was excited about first seeing those red lines pop up on that first positive pregnancy test. And hear our baby’s heartbeat for the very first time. Feel the soft kicks and nudges in the second trimester, and the harder more pronounced movements in the third. Holding that sweet baby for the first time and taking in every smell, yawn and adorable face she made…. so on and so forth. What I didn’t anticipate was how I would feel experiencing our last firsts.

Baby Bear will be our last baby, with that comes a lot of last firsts. The last time I would tear up seeing those red lines pop up on the first test I took. The last time I would hear his heartbeat for the first time. The last time I would feel his first kicks and nudges. The last time I would have a pronounced bump for the first time. I didn’t realize how excited and how devastated all of those things would make me feel. Bear is going to be the last baby I hold for the first time, the last baby I smell and touch and kiss for the first time. He will be the last baby I see smile for the first time, hear giggle for the first time, crawl and walk and talk for the first time.

There will continue to be firsts, some that I have yet to experience. But in this period of my life, I’ll be saying goodbye to the pregnancy first, and soon after the new baby firsts, then the toddler firsts. I’m not sure where life is going to lead us, or what crazy adventures we’ll have as these babies grow and mature… all I know is that I will always look back and treasure all of the firsts from these stages.

Something I’ve learned after having several babies is that you become so busy with the mundane day to day, the cooking and the cleaning, the kissing boo-boos and reading board books that you don’t realize how fast the time goes by. You don’t realize how quickly those firsts will fly by and you learn to appreciate them just a bit more. So mommas, take a moment to treasure those moments, even if you have to take a trip down memory lane to reminisce those magical moments.

The Beginner’s Bible Review & Giveaway!

Now that Boogie is an excellent little reader (and she really really loves it!), I’ve been on the hunt for a book or curriculum to use for her Bible lessons. When I came across The Beginner’s Bible I knew that it would be perfect for her…. the book is a bible for little ones, with simple to read stories that go in the correct order that’s in a typical Bible. Boogie LOVES it.

There are some bigger words that she needs help with, but otherwise she can do this daily reading on her own, then discuss what she learned with me after!

The illustrations are bright, colorful and vivid, any child would enjoy glancing through the pictures even if they can’t read. These illustrations are fresh and new, but the book itself was originally released in 1989 and has been a popular book for many children ever since.

The Beginner’s Bible has a great website with games and activities for kids including printables of all sorts and videos to watch. You’ll also find some great resources for parents and teachers that coincide with each story in this bible. You can find that website HERE. Be sure to enter for a chance to win your own copy of this great bible, or head on over to Amazon to purchase! It’s currently on sale for $12.88!

“Disclosure (in accordance with the FTC’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the
Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising”): Many thanks to Propeller Consulting, LLC for providing this prize for the giveaway. Choice of winners and opinions are 100% my own and NOT influenced by monetary compensation. I did receive a sample of the product in exchange for this review and post. Only one entrant per mailing address, per giveaway.  If you have won a prize from our sponsor Propeller / FlyBy Promotions in the last 30 days, you are not eligible to win.  Or if you have won the same prize on another blog, you are not eligible to win it again. Winner is subject to eligibility verification.”

Baby #4 – 28 & 30 Weeks Update

I’m behind! AH! So, when I was 26 weeks (which you’ll notice that update is missing as well), I came down with a stomach bug. It was AWFUL. I’ve never been so sick in my life, pregnancy makes tummy bugs terrible. So we didn’t even get a photo that week. I am going to share my 28 week photo and my 30 week photo (from this week!) and just give an update for this week. Poor Bear just isn’t getting all the photos and updates like the other kiddos did. Sorry buddy!

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How far along? 30 weeks

Total weight gain/loss: 3lbs


Maternity clothes? Yep. With some LLR thrown in as well.

Stretch marks? Same old ones I’ve had since Boogie!

Sleep: I’ve been sleeping really well lately, but now that we are in the 3rd trimester I have started feeling exhausted in the afternoon. Makes me wish all three of my kids still took naps! 

Best moment this week: Bear is REALLY kicking and moving these days. I love that the kids can actually see my belly move now, Boogie is the only one that really cares, but she loves it!

Movement: See above 😉

Food cravings: Pineapple, cheerios and pomegranate seeds

Gender: Boy

Labor signs: None.

Belly button in or out? In

Wedding rings on or off? On, they fit perfectly as of right now. 

What I miss: Being able to roll over in bed without feeling like I have a bowling ball on my chest!

What am I looking forward too: Getting my body back.

Weekly Wisdom: Psalm 71:5-6 For you are my hope, Lord GOD, my security since I was young. I depended on you since birth, when you brought me from my mother’s womb; I praise you continuously.

Milestones: Baby Bear is approximately 3 pounds!

Gift Guide for 2-3 Year Olds

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It’s that time of year folks! I’m sure you’ve started making your Christmas lists and asking your children what they would like for Christmas. Toddlers are hard sometimes though, they can’t really tell you exactly what they want and they truly don’t need very much…. so what do you get for them?

Here are my top ten gift ideas for the toddler in your life!

Wooden Blocks 41gdneij8lYou can’t go wrong with blocks, they provide so much entertainment for the little ones in our lives. Bird loves to stack them really tall and knock them down, she likes to have her big sister help her build big castles for her dolls and she has started sorting her colored blocks into groups as well. These are also a great investment because they will play with these for several years! This particular set is made by Melissa & Doug, they are a great size for little hands. You can purchase them HERE from Amazon, and right now they’re on sale!

Green Toys picmonkey-collageThese are some of the COOLEST toys, they are made from 100% recycled materials. You won’t find any glue, batteries, screws or paint on these toys. They are nice and chunky and easy for little hands to hold and they have wide variety of choices to choose from. Bird’s favorite is her tea set like the one in the top left photo. She LOVES playing with it, as well as the other kitchen toys we have purchased for her kitchen. There are some great deals on a lot of these toys on Amazon right now, you can find them HERE.

Plush Baby Dolls 71pqqzgqml-_sl1500_Plush babies are so fun and they are the easiest to clean when they get dirty. This set is adorable, I love that it comes with a sleeper, diaper and lovey. Your little one will love nurturing their own baby, and this is a great gift for girls AND boys. Bubby loved playing with his plush baby doll when he was Bird’s age! You can find this particular set on Amazon HERE.

Wooden Puzzles81dyzju5ifl-_sl1200_This is one of Bird’s favorite Melissa & Doug wooden puzzles. It’s one she can piece back together herself and she loves telling me what each farm animal is and what sounds they make. Melissa & Doug have a large variety of wooden puzzles like this and others with the wooden peg handles for even easier handling. These are also on sale right now over on Amazon, you can find a large variety HERE.

Finger Paints 91po-h4cyll-_sl1500_Finger paints can be super messy, but they are a lot of fun… I compromise by using the Mess Free Color Wonder finger paints by Crayola. It’s still messy, but a little less so… and with two older siblings and a new one on the way, this is the best way for us to be creative and not make a GIANT mess! But you can always choose from the large variety of finger paints that Crayola offers, Amazon has a great selection HERE.

Melissa & Doug Sort & Snap Color Match 81i-umgp0kl-_sl1500_This is such a fun toy, we originally bought this for Bubby when he was 2 and now Bird loves pulling this out in our den downstairs. She doesn’t necessarily care about matching the colors yet (and you can actually turn these over to a black and white version of the image as well) snapping the pegs in is great for their fine motor skills, and they love doing it! You can find this HERE on Amazon. Bonus… it’s on sale too!

Mr. Potato Head 71e5ymhqml-_sl1500_Who doesn’t love Mr. Potato Head?! We have an entire bin of pieces to be creative with. We actually purchased a large set to accompany this one, Disney Springs has a toy store with a whole area dedicated to Mr. Potato Head. It’s AMAZING! This simple set is a great starter set though, and you can buy more to add to it later on! This is also a very affordable option if you need some low cost ideas. You can find this set on Amazon HERE.

Little People Sets 61im4nt8zgl-_sl1428_Little People sets are great, we don’t necessarily like the big sets (that include big play sets like the farm, dollhouse, etc.), but we love getting the sets of people and animals. You’ll find everything from farm animals, to zoo animals, to Disney Princesses, Disney villains and more! The options are endless! Bird uses these for everything, we’re even getting some new people to go with her wooden dollhouse we purchased for her for Christmas! They are chunky and durable, perfect for those little toddler hands! You can find this set on Amazon, and others HERE.

Bristle Blocks 91lmlox0l2l-_sl1500_These blocks are so neat, you may remember playing with these blocks in elementary school as a child. You can do almost anything with these blocks, Bird loves to make tall stacks and little cars with hers. I do recommend removing the smaller pieces before letting even your 2 year old play with these until they are mature enough to know not to put them in their mouths, but otherwise these are an amazing option! You can find this set HERE.

Cozy Coupe 81gbxeczfll-_sl1500_Everyone knows what the Cozy Coupe is! I think this is a great gift for little ones, it can be used inside or outside and they will play with these car for HOURS. Bird got one last year for Christmas at age 1 and she would just sit in it and watch her siblings play for hours, she LOVED it and STILL loves it at almost 2. You can find the red version on Amazon HERE or the pink one HERE.

That’s it! Did you find some great ideas? Do you have more suggestions? Feel free to leave a comment to say hello and what you think! I’ll be posting a few more gift guides in the next few weeks, so keep an eye out! If you want to be alerted of new posts, go to the right hand column and sign up to subscribe to my posts! Then you won’t miss any family updates or the gift guides coming soon!

This post contains affiliate links, which means that if you click on one of the product links, I’ll receive compensation for your purchases. This money is used for the upkeep of my blog and to provide for our family, so thank you for supporting Mustard Seed Mommy!

How to Start Your Own Blog

Starting your own blog can be a scary endeavor. You’re diving into a world of the unknown and trying to figure out all these technical aspects… it can be crazy! You can start simply by opening a free site on BlogSpot or WordPress or other similar blogging sites, or you can dive right in (or move up from free hosting blogs) to your very own domain on a WordPress blog!

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As for setting your site up, that part is pretty easy. You just have to follow some simple steps to get going! My hosting site, MommyHost has some great tips and directions to get started, and getting started with them is super easy.

  1. Choose a Hosting Plan – this is easy because HELLO! I’ve already told you who the best hosting site is! MommyHost! You can click the image below to get started, and I can help walk you through the steps. So click below and then come back here to follow the steps!

As I stated in my previous post, which you can find HERE, there are three tiers to choose from when it comes to choosing a plan through MommyHost. They are all very affordable and include a free domain, set up, email addresses and daily backups. There is the Iris, the Lily and the Tulip plans. They range from $10-21/month and if you use the coupon startmyblog during the last step of the checkout process you will also receive 10% off a 1-2 year billing cycle!

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2. Choose Your Domain Name – once you have completed the above, your next step is to choose a domain name for your blog! I thought this part was really fun when I first started Mustard Seed Mommy. My domain was pretty easy to come up with once I named my blog! If you’re a brand new blog then you get to register your domain for FREE, otherwise you can transfer your current domain (if you already have one) to MommyHost for a low fee or use your existing domain and just update your nameservers (if you’re clueless about this, you can contact Katie at MommyHost for help!

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3. Choose a Billing Cycle – This is super easy as well. I pay a yearly fee for my hosting services, and that is what I recommend. Especially since you can use that startmyblog coupon for 10% off! Just follow the steps to choose your billing and I would also pay the 9.95/year to register your domain privately as this will keep your personal information private!

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4. Install a WordPress Theme – this can be very overwhelming. At some point I plan to purchase a premium WordPress theme so it can be altered and designed specifically for Mustard Seed Mommy. But for now, I chose a free template. See the images below to see where to find your themes. It’s pretty easy to find, and they are easy to install! I’ll try to post another tutorial sometime in the next month on how to customize and add widgets!

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This is what your admin site will look like. If you take your mouse and scroll down the side bar you’ll see the box that says “Appearance”, if you hover over that you’ll find the link for Themes. Once you go there, you’ll see the above screen. You’ll see any themes that are already installed. To search for a new free theme, just click the “Add Theme” button at the top left of your page.

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Once you do that you’ll see the above page. You can scroll through the ones shown immediately, click one of the links near the top for different categories like “Popular” or search in the box I circled in the image above.

 

That’s it! Easy right!? If you’re ready to start your own site, don’t be afraid to just dive in. Down the road you can do all sorts of posts and jobs that can earn you money, and while I don’t earn a significant amount (as I don’t put as much work into my blog these days with 3, soon to be 4 littles running around) I earn enough for some extra spending money here and there! Enjoy it, have fun and don’t forget to use MommyHost by clicking the image below!