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May 26, 2016

Scrub Daddy Review And Giveaway

As many of you know, I love Love LOVE to clean! My friends tease me for it constantly and when I mentioned I was doing a review for Scrub Daddy the reaction I got from people was "of course you would"! I'm always looking for new options that work better but are still the healthiest choices for my family. Just like we eat as much all natural and organic as possible, we use mostly "green" products for cleaning so anything that helps keep up with the lifestyle I want to try!

I really love that they come in different colors so it's easy to keep them separated for different rooms/ jobs. Don't want any cross contamination! Makes my OCD very happy! 

 

I told Chris I was going to need his help for this review! Since washing the cars and cleaning the outdoor toys/ furniture is usually his domain. He seemed pretty excited to help! Especially once they arrived. His favorite part is when you use the sponge to clean utensils you stick them in the mouth and it looks like you're feeding them! Only my husband haha. 

So far we've used them for doing dishes and washing the cars.. When washing the dishes I used my method brand dish soap. I wouldn't say they cleaned the dishes any better than the sponges I typically use, but they did work well. And they are for sure softer when used with warm water. As for the car, I was extremely impressed. It took off all the spots (birdie poop and smushed bugs- gross!) with almost no effort. As well as removed all the pollen that was completely covering the car. We didn't use any soap, just the sponge and hose water. The car looks super clean! 

Over all I'm very pleased with Scrub Daddy sponges and I would absolutely purchase them and will recommend them to all my friends and family! I'm interested to see how they hold up over time, but I'll have to get back to you on that. 

And now for the giveaway! One of you have the chance to win a 3 pack of Scrub Daddy Sponges! Just comment down below between now and June 1 at 11:59pm. The winner will be selected June 2, 2016. Good luck to you all! 

Boys And Their Toys

Back in 2006 Chris bought a 1992 Eagle Talon.. It was his baby and I HATED that thing! He was always working on it, putting money into it, racing it. I didn't get what the heck was so special about a car! Now I get it, everyone needs a hobby.. He spent the last decade upgrading that car. Lots of parts and money went under the hood. 

 

Last year it caught on fire. We're still not exactly sure what happened? But we had it towed home and stored it in the garage for the winter.. Figuring once the nice weather (and tax returns) came he'd be able to fix it. 



A few weeks ago we had it towed to the only shop he'll allow to touch it.. And after a few days they came back with a list of the damages. It was way worse than what we had expected and the cost to fix it just wasn't something we were willing to do. The amount of money it would be, it just made more sense to buy something else. He was sad of course, but it's the end of an era and like everything else in our lives.. Time to start fresh! 

So he got his new toy.. A Nissan 300ZX. 

 

I know absolutely nothing about cars. I won't even pretend I do. But I do know that every guy wants one of these, so this is a big freakin deal! 

It's in excellent condition, no rust and the leather interior is intact. Everything under the hood is new. Plus it's got low miles. Looking at it from a logical standpoint, it was a really good deal. Looking at it from my Husbands point of view. He's got one of his dream cars sitting in his garage! 

He was ecstatic when it arrived yesterday and it was so nice to see him so happy! Especially since he was so bummed about the Talon. 

Obviously this isn't a family friendly vehicle, but we've got a couple of those. This is for him. Though I made him promise no racing! The kids and I need him. He says he doesn't plan to make any major changes, right now. But I don't see that lasting long haha. 

May 21, 2016

Date Night!

I posted recently about our Family Fun Days and how important it is to dedicate time to your children. Well it's just as important, if not more so to dedicate time to your spouse and your marriage. I'll admit this is something I was very bad at when I first had kids. But I realized that doing things for myself and for my relationship was important to help me be a better mother and wife (ultimately my first marriage failed, but not due to a lack of my trying). Sometimes it is okay to be a little selfish! After your children grow up and leave the house, who's there with you? Your spouse. You've got to make sure that relationship is healthy and strong!

I mentioned in our Love Story that when Chris and I were together 11 years ago, we did lots of fun romantic things together. Always going out to eat, to the movies, taking trips. But with 5 (soon to be 6) kids full time, it's hard to find time or the money for that matter to do things just the two of us. So we improvise..

Bedtime in our house is strictly enforced. Kids go into their rooms at 7 for "quiet time" and lights out is at 8. The kids know we're "off duty" unless of course there's an emergency! This gives me time to clean up the house and Chris finish any work he needs to get done. And then we have time to ourselves. We get a snack, put on a show or movie and snuggle up in bed together. Every. Single. Night. 

Once a month we try to do an actual Date Night. The grand parents are amazing and love to babysit once in a while.. So we'll do a date night at home where we pick a new recipe from Pinterest and cook together, then rent a movie. Or sometimes we'll go out shopping, who doesn't love shopping?! and grab something to eat. When the weather is nice we love to take the dogs for a walk down to the lake and picnic for dinner. And before I was pregnant we'd go out for a couple drinks and play pool.. But I don't see that one happening again for a long time! Haha.

I know I say this all the time.. But Chris is undoubtably my soulmate and I am so in love with him. Married, 5 kids, with a baby on the way and the "honeymoon phase" hasn't ended. I still get butterflies when he walks in the door and the way he looks at me, my heart just melts! I want us to be that couple in 50 years that's still as ridiculously in love as they were way back when. Part of it really is the connection, and we have it! But we also need to make sure we continue to nurture our relationship. He and I know how important these Date Nights are for our marriage! Also the best thing we can do for our children is show them a healthy relationship with two people who really love and respect each other! 

Tonight is Date Night.. And I am so looking forward to some one on one time with my Husband! 

 
Our Last Date Night 

May 18, 2016

Sundae Fun Day!

Every Sunday we do a "Family Fun Day". We spend the entire day together as a family. Occasionally we'll have company but usually it's just the 7 of us.

Sunday mornings start out with everyone sleeping in.. Since we don't have school, work or baseball forcing us out of bed at the ass crack of dawn! Then Chris and I cook a big breakfast. Waffles or pancakes, frenchtoast, hash browns, eggs, REAL bacon, sausage, etc. Everyone looks forward to this all week, it's so yummy! And I really look forward to the time with my Hubby, I absolutely love being in the kitchen with him!

After breakfast we get to work. If you're a homeowner you know, there's always a project to complete.. Painting, rearranging, yard work. Especially recently since I'm in full blown nesting mode and we're getting ready for Squish! The kids really love helping out and getting involved. A few weeks back we laid new mulch in all the flower beds. I've never seen 5 kids so excited about wood chips! Haha.

Sunday dinner is an important meal as well. I give everyone a few options and we pick together what I'm going to cook. I try to make it a crock pot meal so I can get it all prepped in the morning and that way when it's dinner time all I have to do is serve!

After dinner is when the fun starts! It's so important to dedicate time to the kids! That doesn't mean taking them somewhere and spending a ton of money. Just spending time with them, that's about them. Pop popcorn and watch a movie, have a Just Dance competition, play a board game or hide and seek, etc. This week we did make your own Ice Cream Cones/ Sundaes! Which were a huge hit!

 

 

We also played a little Just Dance! 

 

 
What are your favorite activities do you do with your kiddos?


I'll Show You My... Makeup Collection

Our monthly collab is here again! And I'm so excited for this one! But before I get started, I just want to explain "I'll Show You My..." to those of you who are new. My good friend Tracy and I decided to start this monthly collaboration and on the third Wednesday of each month we will post the topic we've picked to show off for that month! This week Christina is joining us as well! If you're interested in participating please jump right in! Just be sure to link your posts back to us.

Now onto my collection! I was super excited about this post and couldn't wait to get started! I have recently really started branching out when it comes to makeup and between Birchbox and having a bit of a shopping problem, my collection is expanding! And I got a couple new organizers just for this blog! 

 
Makeup Collection Overview 

 
Tools (tweezers, eye lash curler), under eye concealers,
liquid foundation, tinted moisturizer,
powder foundation, setting powder, lumi cushion
and lip products. 

 
 Eye liners, sharpener, mascaras and small eye shadow. 

Bronzer and blush. 

 
 Eye shadow palettes. 

 
Makeup brushes. 

 
My current favorites and go-tos for this simple and natural everyday look are: 
  1. Aveeno Tinted Moisturizer 
  2. Loreal Lumi Cushion (N2-I use my beauty blender instead of their pad to apply) 
  3. Maybelline Age Rewind Concealer 
  4. NYX Translucent Powder (to set my face) 
  5. The Balm Manizer Sisters Palette (bronzer, blush, highlight). 
  6. Maybelline Master Drama Pencil Eye Liner 
  7. Smashbox Full Exposure Mascara
  8. Burts Bees Tinted Lip Balm
I hope you enjoy this post as much as I enjoyed putting it together! I'm super proud of my little makeup collection and I'm so excited to keep building it and trying new things! What are your favorite products?! 

May 8, 2016

Freshly Picked Review And Giveaway!

*This Giveaway Is Now Closed* 

About two years ago I did a review and giveaway for Freshly Picked Moccasins.. They are such a wonderful company to work with and I am beyond thrilled for the opportunity to collaborate with them again!


If you've never heard of Freshly Picked before, let me give you a little background.. Susan Peterson started this company in 2009, making moccasins for her own child after becoming frustrated with the lack of good quality baby shoes available. She appeared on Shark Tank, which obviously is where I saw them! And now 7 years later she has built one amazing brand! All the shoes are handmade, in the US, made with 100% genuine leather. They are easy to put on, but don't come off easily so your kiddos don't kick them off!

The first review I did was on these rose colored moccs for my daughter, who at the time was a year old. She actually still fits into them, they were a little big to start and she's so petite! So they've grown with her. And they held up beautifully, I couldn't be more pleased!

  
2014 

This time I chose the ivory colored moccs in newborn for our little Squish who kwill be arriving in just a few weeks! Since we don't know if it's a boy or girl, I wanted something gender neutral. And I cannot wait to see our little love bug wearing them! All the same things I loved about the first pair I received, I love about these! They are amazing! 


  
2016

And now for the Giveaway!

To Enter:

  • If you don't already, follow me on Instagram -HappilyBlended 
  • Follow Freshly Picked on Instagram - FRESHLYPICKED
  • Like the giveaway photo. 
  • Comment on the photo or here on my blog.
  • Tag a friend for an extra entry. 
  • You MUST reside in the US to enter this giveaway. 
  • If you have won a Freshly Picked giveaway in the last 60 you are not eligible to enter. 
You have from now until May 20 at 11:59pm to enter.. The winner will be chosen at random on May 21. Good luck to you all! 

May 3, 2016

Baby Watkins Gender Predictions!

 

As most of you know, we've chosen to keep the gender of "Squish" a surprise.. We thought it would be exciting to do something different since it's our first baby together! Chris and I spent the afternoon answering all these questions and experimenting a bit, which was so much fun! He says Boy but I'm completely undecided??

We have a month (or less) until he/she arrives and we finally meet our little love! So here's your opportunity to cast your vote.. Blue or Pink what do you think??

Old Wives Tales

Morning Sickness? Yes 
Heart Rate? Above 140 
Carrying High Or Low? High 
Mom's Craving? Salty 
Beauty? Glowing
Attitude? Moody
Chinese Calendar? Boy
Mayan Theory? Girl 
Hands? Dry And Cold  
Hairline Of Previous Born Child? Girl

Experiments 

Baking Soda? Girl
Draino? Girl
Ring? Boy 

And lastly, I know you all want to see how I'm carrying.. 
 



Pay It Forward! Nursing Cover Giveaway!

I won this Nursing Cover and since I don't use them, I decided to Pay It Forward and offer it up to my loyal followers! 

 
Free Birds Pattern 

To Enter:
•If you don't already, follow me on Instagram -  KatieWatkins214.
•Like the Nursing Cover Giveaway photo. 
•Comment here or on the photo for your entry. 
•You can also tag a friend for an extra chance to win! 
•Make sure to enter by May 6, the winner will be chosen May 7, 2016!
•You MUST live in the US to be eligible.

May 1, 2016

Replay Infant Spoon Review

Replay Recycled just sent me the new infant spoon they're launching to review!



While I don't have an infant in the house, I do have a toddler with fine motor delays. And let me tell you this spoon was super easy for her to use! She usually just uses regular utensils but seems to always have a little trouble with them.. This spoon, no problem at all! I actually really hope they make a fork with the same design! 

So if you have an infant who's ready to start eating "solids" or a toddler who's got a bit of trouble using utensils, I'd highly recommend this! 

  • Sold in 4 packs, including one travel case
  • Ergonomic comfort grip
  • Length of handle keeps mom’s hands clean and allows baby to help feed himself
  • Depth of bowl accommodates first bites and growing appetites  
  • Contoured edges clean up messy faces in a breeze
  • Smooth material is gentle on the mouth and gums but tough against little teeth
  • PVC, BPA and Phthalate free
  • Retail: $5.99