My New Adventure

 

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UPDATED:

SINCE I FIRST PUBLISHED THIS POST, I HAVE BEEN BLOWN AWAY BY HOW THIS COMPANY HAS HELPED ME AND MY FAMILY IN ONE SHORT MONTH

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img_0584So a few weeks ago I made a big decision to jump on board with my friend Carey and start sharing a skin care line (Rodan + Fields) that I have been happily using for the last 8 or 9 months.  Sure, sure, you’ve seen people selling junk all over social media and the internet, but rest assured this is COMPLETELY different.  If you know me, you know that I only share things that I am confident in and passionate about.  And let me tell you, I am overflowing with passion and confidence in EVERY SINGLE PRODUCT that Rodan + Fields has to offer AND the doctors behind the products.

Something for EVERYONE!

Something for EVERYONE!

Let me back up just a bit and give you a little background on my skin.  There is a lot more, but I will only back up to after my son Ashton was born.  Shortly after he was born I had a huge flare-up of my Ulcerative Colitis.  I have written about on the blog before here and here (my writing about it is pretty “iffy” since I was over 9 months pregnant when I wrote those posts), but the short story is that it took TONS of steroids and medication to get me back in remission.  Remission is a fantastic place to be, but the downside was coming off of the steroids (prednisone).  While on prednisone, my skin was perfect, but after weaning off of it I faced all sorts of skin issues.

From perioral dermatitis to seborrheic dermatitis to just constant redness and dryness  that wouldn’t go away.  It was horrible, embarrassing and uncomfortable.  I tried everything from oil cleansing, sea salt washes, any product out there that said it could help.  Nothing worked.  I went on antibiotics to help the dermatitis, but they made me sick.  Even the esthetician I was seeing told me it’s just how it was going to be and “hey, at least you’ll never have to buy blush!”  Ugh.img_0585

I started watching my diet more and noticing how gluten affected my skin.  It made a big difference, but I still had  redness and dullness in my skin that I would use makeup to conceal.  Fast-forward to after I had my daughter Gemma 10 months ago.  I had been seeing my friend Carey post about Rodan + Fields and their incredible Multifunction Eye Cream.  With a newborn and a toddler, I would try anything for my dark circles, haha!  So I got the eye cream and cloths and fell in love.  It’s not magic and I can’t say it made me look like I was the most rested person on earth (let’s face it, that’s impossible when you’re up every 2 hours feeding a baby), but it brightened my eye area and replaced that dry tissue-paper under-eye feeling with a softer, firmer feeling.

Superheroes!

Superheroes!

This set of products intrigued me, so I started researching (through my bleary newborn phase eyes) and consistently read glowing review after glowing review.  I was tired of throwing money away on products that didn’t work, and Rodan + Fields had a 60 day empty bottle money back guarantee if I wasn’t happy (nothing to lose).  So when I read about the regimen Soothe (used for visible signs of redness, dryness, irritated skin), I decided to try it.

I literally noticed a difference within 24-48 hours.img_0583

I finished that regimen and tried another (Redefine).  I loved it just as much.  I told Carey about how much I loved the products and how much of a difference they made (something I couldn’t say about any other product I had used).  She put a bug in my ear about becoming a consultant, but I brushed it off.  Sure, it would allow me to have a bigger discount on the products, but I’m not a “salesy” person.  I kept seeing her post and talk about how this business was allowing her to contribute more money into and grow their Bryer’s Song Ministry (go read their story, it is pretty incredible).  Then I started seeing more people on Instagram post about Rodan + Fields.  Then one of my best friends told me how Soothe was saving her skin after a bout of dermatitis.  And then, and then, and then…

I started to feel like the opportunity at Rodan + Fields  was something I didn’t want to miss out on.  There are so many people out there who I could share these products with and help them with their own skin concerns.  The company is still in early enough stages that there is a lot of room for success and growth.  So a few weeks ago I pulled the trigger and became a consultant.  The only regret I have is that I didn’t start sooner.

Not only is it giving me an opportunity to share products that can help others with ANY type of skin concern, it has been emotionally refreshing, energizing and forced me out of my comfort zone. Being a stay-at-home mom is my favorite thing, but sometimes it can feel a little like the movie Groundhog’s Day- the same thing over and over, every day.img_0582  This has been a way to shake things up the day to day, and for that reason alone it has been well worth it.  I cannot wait to see where this adventure leads!

WHEW!

There it is, that is my story that led to my new exciting Rodan + Fields adventure.  Oh, and not to toot my own horn, but in less that two weeks I received my first promotion!  I only say this because IF I CAN DO IT, ANYONE CAN DO IT!  The support & encouragement in this company is incredible!img_0581

I can’t wait to share more about the products.  If you have any skin concerns or want any more information, please message me because I would LOVE to help!  If you want to join me on this adventure and be a part of a rapidly growing company, I would love to talk  to you about an opportunity you won’t regret!!!

 

xoxo

 

 

Friday Favorites: Things My Two Year Old Says

I’ve been wanting to write down all of the cute/funny stuff Ashton is doing and saying lately, and that time is now.  I want to remember it, and if I wait any longer I will forget.  He is 2 years and 3 months, and time is flying!

Yesterday we went trick-or-treating, and it was so much fun.  It’s really the first year that Ashton has been able to participate and be aware (a little) of what’s going on.  He wore the same costume as last year, and it just barely fit.

Trick-Or-Treat!

Trick-Or-Treat!

He would go up to houses, knock on doors, say a jumbled “trick-or-treat” and say thank you at every house.  He was so polite!  He also wanted to either go inside or stay with the people on every front porch, especially if they had a dog.  It was really the cutest thing to watch.

A couple weeks ago we were down in Florida visiting family and here are some things that Ashton said and did down there:

  • He had NO FEAR of the ocean.  By the end it was a struggle to get him to leave the water.

    Surfer Dude.

    Surfer Dude.

  • We were near Daytona Beach and it was “Biketober Fest.”  There were so many motorcycles, and Ashton started calling them “mycles” (pronounced like the name Michael).  Two syllables are much easier than four 🙂
  • He called our Aunt Anne “Onie,” and loved throwing shells into the ocean with her.
  • He got to meet his Aunt Jan, and asked about her everyday for a while.
  • He met his Nana and Grandad’s dog (he and Gemma both loved her).IMG_9532
  • Hotel was called “tell.”

Other things he’s saying:

  • “Bulls” for vegetables.  Which he loves now, especially peas.
  • He used to say “key” for Mickey, but this week he actually started to say it correctly, and he was so proud of himself.
  • He calls Aunt Lori “WahhhhWeeeee” and asks about her pretty much all day long.
  • When Dada is gone, he says “Dada airport!”  And he tells anyone who will listen (i.e. the random older couple we passed on our walk today).
  • He pronounces cars “Cah-eees.”
  • Trash day is an exciting day for him, he loves the truck.  He yells “tash!”
  • The other day he wanted to go into the garage to play with his cars, and he said “pweeeease” and had his hands in a prayer position.  I don’t know where he picked that up!
  • He’s been addicted to fries and whenever he sees Mcdonald’s he yells out “fwiiiiies!”  But after eating way too many fries on vacation, we started telling him no fries.  So now he won’t eat them, and anytime he sees them he says “no fwies.”
  • He loves yogurt (especially the drinkable kind he can use a straw with) and calls it “ahtoot.”
  • He knows my coffee mugs and k-cups I drink, and he points to it and says “fahfee.”

 

I know I am missing stuff, but I will keep adding to the lists.  He pretty much doesn’t stop talking until he sleeps, so there’s a lot of material.  I love watching him discover things, this age is SO MUCH FUN!

xoxo

 

Friday Favorites: Things I’m Loving Lately

1. I went to Costco the other day by myself (what???) and had a chance to browse around.  I found these edamame noodles that have turned out to be AMAZING!

Edamame noodles for the win!

Edamame noodles for the win!

 They cook in 4-5 minutes, and even my picky toddler ate them (with earth balance (basically butter) on them).

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2. I tried “just mayo” and it is “just” incredible.  No eggs.  No dairy.  Just quality ingredients and quality taste.  You won’t know the difference between this and regular mayo.  (and they sell it at some Target stores now).

Get in my belly.

Get in my belly.

 

3. Love cauliflower but hate chopping it?  Here’s an answer to your prayers: pre-washed, pre-chopped cauliflower for the price of buying a head of it in the produce section.  You’re welcome.

It doesn't get easier than this.

It doesn’t get easier than this.

 

4. This book:

This book will make you laugh, cry, and feel like Jen Hatmaker is your BFF.  Whatever season of life you are in, you will love it.  Actually, get the audiobook if you are into audiobooks (that’s how I am reading it).  She reads it herself and it feels like you are just sitting across the table talking to her.  She is the best.

 

5. The Zipadee-Zip.IMG_9028  This has been amazing for moving Gemma out of the swaddle without any problems.  If you are a fan of Shark Tank, it was featured on that show.  Gemma sleeps 11-13.5 hours at night, so I don’t think the zipadee hurts!

 

6. My cousin Mandy KILLING it.IMG_9026

She wrote an amazing 10 PAGE ARTICLE for TIME, and I couldn’t be prouder.  She is an amazing writer and an even more amazing person.  This article is so good and SO important.  Click the link and READ IT.

 

Friday Favorites (On Saturday) (Again)

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Happy Saturday!  I wanted to put up a few favorites, and Friday got away from me again 🙂  So here ya go!

1.  National Siblings Day.  When did that start?  I think this is the first year I actually saw it as a “thing.”  Since I have such an AWESOME sibling, I didn’t want to skip it.  My brother pretty much rocks the house when it comes to siblings.  He is one of my biggest cheerleaders, supporters and greatest friends.  He is also the coolest Uncle to Ashton and Gemma.  We sure do love him!IMG_7489

2.  These vegan/gluten-free “cookies.”  Oh She Glows is this great blog I have followed for years, and is great for vegans and non-vegans alike.  It is also really fun to read about her life as a new mom too.  But back to these cookies.  I have made them pretty much every week since right before I had Gemma.  I freeze them and have one almost every morning.  Yum!

This photo is courtesy of Angela at OhSheGlows.com.  Visit her site and make these ASAP!

This photo is courtesy of Angela at OhSheGlows.com. Visit her site and make these ASAP!

3.  I just found this Aquage product, and it is the most amazing volume-giving hair product I have come across.  I am getting ready for my hair to start shedding around four months postpartum again, and this will probably be my best friend. I found it on The Small Things blog where Kate has some really great tips/tricks, etc.  Oh, and she also just became a mom for the second time.IMG_7500

4.  This week I had my postpartum checkup and took Gemma with me.  It was great and she travelled great.  Win win!

Elevator snoozing.

Elevator snoozing.

5.  The spring weather.  It has pretty much arrived now, and it is SOOOOO nice to get out of the house and go walking again.  This was our view yesterday on the beautiful spring Friday.  What a great way to end the week! IMG_7492

Friday Favorites: Randomness Lately

It’s been two weeks,  but I’m back with some random favorites from the last two weeks!IMG_7035

Two weeks ago when my mom was helping me out, she gave Gemma bottles during the night and gave me a few nights of solid sleep… I cannot remember the last time I was able to sleep eight hours without waking up!  This was the documentation via my UP24 band: 
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On top of that good sleep, I showered and did my hair.  What??  It was like a spa day 😉
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That is me headed out to run errands.  Showered and rested. Four weeks postpartum.  It needed to be documented.

Speaking of four weeks postpartum, Miss Gemma turned ONE MONTH!

1 Month New

1 Month New

In the last couple weeks I have started walking again.  Nothing too strenuous, but it’s felt great to get out and moving.  Here is Ashton enjoying the “new ride” (aka a BOB Dualie):

Chillin'

Chillin’

Gemma has had some diaper rash that wouldn’t go away, so after little success of trying to treat it with the cream we had, I called the pediatrician.  The nurse said it sounded like a diaper rash of the “yeast” variety and to try this combo:

Lotrimin and Mylanta mixed with Aquaphor.

Lotrimin and Mylanta mixed with Aquaphor.

Such random ingredients, but they worked like a charm!  Who knew?!

Also from weeks 4-6 for Gemma, she started getting a big ‘ol fussy time in the evening from about 8pm to 11pm or so.  It. Was. Rough.  A few of the nights she wouldn’t sleep well after that, so we were struggling.  Honestly, I don’t mind the nighttime feedings, but the evening stretches of fussiness are what get me.  So a couple nights ago I started giving her a bath at night, and look who has overcome “fussy time!”

#winning

#winning

On top of beating fussy time, she has been sleeping for six hour stretches each night!  Hallelujah!

And then another favorite from lately is this photo I captured of my hubby and Gemma taking a nap ❤

He spoils her.

He spoils her.

So much to love about it… Ruffle butt, local shirt, Ohio, music…

And then lastly is this picture with the Ohio State bow that Aunt Wendy sent up with a bunch of other adorable bows:

Go Bucks!

Go Bucks!

Have a fabulous Friday!  xoxo

Friday Favorites (on Saturday): The Postpartum/Newborn Helpers Edition

 

A Saturday edition of Friday Favorites 🙂IMG_7035This Friday Favorites is dedicated to all the help I have had after having Gemma.  I know I will forget to mention some, but that is because I have major MOMMY BRAIN!IMG_7253

It’s been four weeks since I had Gemma.  It’s been an amazing month of getting to know her and the new family dynamic.  But none of it would be possible without the help from so many people.  Well, it would be possible, but it wouldn’t be as “easy.”

This time around, I am making more of an effort to let people help me and seek out the help when I need it.  It’s not always easy, because after becoming a mom I became someone who tried (still tries?) to do it all.  Maybe that is just what happens to all of us when we have kids.  But this time, I was (am?) determined to relax and let others help more.  Everyone knows I just had a baby and have a toddler, there is no reason to try and make things perfect.  So, I have been doing my best at letting go and letting others in.

And you know what?  This postpartum/newborn time has been MUCH more enjoyable and manageable.

Here are some (definitely not all) of the helpers I have had lately:

1.  The hospital.  This time around instead of trying to get the heck out of there as soon as they let me, I wanted to stay as long as our health insurance would allow (ummm, hello?!  The cost of c-sections?  I was going to get every last ounce out of the stay as I could!).  I stayed four nights, asked for all the help I needed and sent the baby to the nursery (which I barely did for Ashton) to get some stretches of sleep and showers.  When it was finally time to leave, I felt ready and a little rested (unlike the first time around).  This was soooo helpful going home to a house with a toddler.

2.  My husband.  He was able to take three weeks off, and this was wonderful!  He was on total Ashton-duty: getting him up, putting him to bed, putting him down for naps, keeping him from climbing on me and Gemma, etc.  He also cooked, cleaned, and much more.  He knocked it out of the park, and I am so incredibly grateful for such an awesome hubby. ❤

Vacuum buddies.  Start him early!

Vacuum buddies. Start him early!

3.  Friends and my MOPs group for bringing meals over for our family.  I joined a moms’ group about a year ago, and recently met one of the moms in the group at a birthday party.  She offered to create a meal-train for us, and actually did it!  Sometimes people have great intentions, but life gets in the way of actually doing things (I know I am guilty of this).  But this sweet girl set it up and it was a HUGE blessing.

On top of some of the moms from that group signing up to bring meals, sweet girls from my MOPs group table organized a week of bringing meals, gift cards and presents for Gemma too.  MOPs is an incredible organization for moms of little kids, and I found out about it last summer via a blogger I adore.  After she spoke so highly of it, I found a local group and signed up (this took a lot of courage as I didn’t know anyone there.  And I am not one to venture out of my comfort zone too frequently).  Joining this group has been so awesome and I have made some great friends through it.  The theme of MOPs this year is “Be You Bravely.”  Coincidence?  I think not.IMG_7272

4.  Family.  From the Friday I went to the hospital to have Gemma until now, our family has done TONS.  From cooking and cleaning to babysitting and carrying Ashton to bed while I can’t.  And the gifts for both Gemma and Ashton… our family has really spoiled them.  And us.  So thankful for them ALL!IMG_7132IMG_7136

5.  Last but not least, my mom.  She falls into the family category too, but she deserves her own category 🙂  She is the most selfless giving person I know, and I don’t know what I would do without her, her help and the love she pours out on all of us.  She took a ton of time off from work to help us out before and after Gemma was born, and there is no way to thank her enough.  She puts up with me when I am grumpy and tired (sorry mom), has been amazing with helping us get into a little bit of a routine and she even let me get eight hour stretches of sleep a few nights in a row (priceless).  I am so sad that she will have to go back to work this next week, it has been so nice and so fun having her around so much.  Our kiddos are definitely blessed with the best Granny in town!

Love

Love

What have I learned?  Help is good.  Ask for it (the worst that can happen is they say no).  It takes a village. Enjoy the people who help, they are good, precious people.

xoxo

 

Friday Favorites: My Posts on Pregnancy With Ulcerative Colitis

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My attempt at a last-minute graphic, haha!

I am linking up with Andrea, Narci and Erika again for Friday Favorites!

Friday FavoritesToday I am SOOOOOOOOOOO excited to share my Friday Favorites, because it is something I have been wanting to share for a long time.  I finally made myself sit down and write it out before I have my new baby girl next week.

What are my favorites, you ask?

My two posts about my journey through both of my pregnancies with Ulcerative Colitis.  I am hoping that through these posts (and more that I plan on writing in the future) can help give somebody hope and shed some light on the topic.  I know I felt great comfort when I would find others going through the same ordeal when I was in the thick of it.

Here is where you can read PART 1

Here is where you can read PART 2

I hope you have a wonderful Friday!!!

xoxo