4Moms bounceRoo- a.k.a The Greatest Bouncer Ever

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Before Liam arrived, I registered for a bouncer. Turns out it was more of a rocker than a bouncer, but we still used it from time to time. One day while trying to put it away, I dropped it and broke it. We went a while without one and I didn’t really miss having one. He was really little when we first started using it and he didn’t really like to be in it for more than 10 minutes or so. Then I happened to find this 4Moms bouncer on sale for 50% off and decided “What the heck, I’ll give it a try.” It had great reviews and it was the style of baby product that I like (no obnoxious colors or crazy designs). It came in the mail a few days later and I popped him in it and he loooooved it. He sat in it for over an hour while I showered, got dressed, sat there and stared at him wondering how I ever did anything before I had this thing, drank my coffee… He get seriously tickled pink by the little mobile that is attached to the top. One side has colors and the other has high contrast pattens, which is great because based on baby’s age, their preferences will change. It also vibrates (it has different options for vibration pattern and intensity… fancy) which he seems to like. For full price, this thing is a lot more than what I would normally pay for a bouncer, but I’m so glad I found it on sale and got it. Now, he sits in it every morning while I get dressed and occasionally while I’m eating lunch or working on a post (like right now!). You can buy yours here (currently discounted, but prices may change).  I seriously dread the day that he outgrows this thing, because I’ve kind of come to rely on it when it comes to getting anything done around the house. Hey, 4Moms… Think you could start making bounceRoo’s up to adult sizes?

Anyone else obsessed with this bouncer? Share in the comments!

Xoxo,

The Crispy Mama

How My Party Girl Past Prepared Me For Motherhood

To say that I enjoyed my youthful single years would be putting it mildly. Not that I was totally out of control, but I certainly knew how to have a good time. You might think that a night out has nothing to do with raising a child, but you would be so incredibly wrong. All of the ways that my past as a “party girl” has made me way more prepared for motherhood that I would have been otherwise are as follows…

It’s 2 am and someone is barfing. It happens and it’s no biggie. I know how to clean it up quickly and I can get that smell out of anything. (Vinegar and baking soda for the smell, cat litter to clean it up on carpet, coffee grounds to clean it up on hard surfaces, y’all.)

Cold leftovers are king. I have learned to love cold pizza, Chinese, whatever the hell we had last night, almost more than hot food. Good thing, because who has the time to eat their food while it’s still hot?

Speaking of food, mealtime is often at 3 am. And a certain someone often passes out in the middle of eating this 3 am meal. Rookie.

We’re trying to get in the car and someone is crying and missing a shoe. Nothing to see here. Offer a treat to shut the crying up, find the shoe and toss it in the back seat, and hit the road. I look in the back and the same someone is squirming around and crying again and ohmygosh please be quiet for five more minutes we’re almost there. Finally he passes out and is quiet until we get home.

I have to carry this person everywhere that we go. Whatever. As long as we get where we’re going without anyone having a meltdown.

Being an overly exhausted mom is actually remarkably similar to being hungover. Thankfully, I discovered the no-fail hangover cure years ago, (glass of orange juice, two multi vitamins, two ibuprofen, large cup of coffee, large glass of water, preferably sparkling) and I am fully capable of dragging my throbbing head ass out of bed and starting the day.

Whoops! Someone peed their pants! No problem because I was prepared. Strip off the top layer of bed sheets (and the waterproof cover because I’ve been through this shit before and I am NOT doing laundry in the middle of the night again) revealing the clean, dry ones underneath and everyone goes back to bed.

I like the cheap wine. Good luck buying diapers and that $40 bottle of Sauvignon Blanc. The $10 bottle will work. Don’t lie. You can’t taste the difference and it gets the job done.

Kid’s toys are way too loud and the music sucks. Much like any bar after 10 pm.

Someone is having a meltdown and we have to leave early. Oh well. The outing was fun while it lasted. Homeward we go, possibly stopping for a snack along the way.

I know that the comfortable shoes always trump the cute ones. My patience is infinitely better when my feet aren’t killing me.

Sleeping on the floor, couch, in a chair, etc happens. Whatever. I gotta get that sleep where I can and I’m so tired that it doesn’t really matter to me anyways.

They say that kids are like little drunk adults and they aren’t lying. Luckily, their pukes are a lot smaller and they’re a lot easier to carry home when they pass out early. What’s your favorite “tiny drunk adult” story? Share in the comments!

Xoxo,

The Crispy Mama

 

HelloFresh: The Good, The Bad, And The Umami

This week, we got our first HelloFresh box. These food boxes seem to be a big trend lately, and because going to the grocery store with an infant is a very large pain in my ass, we decided to give it a try. I found a Groupon to get my first box for $30, plus I had a $10 off Groupon code, so I ended up getting my first box for $20. The box includes 3 meals per week, for 2 people (they also offer a family option with enough for four people, and a vegetarian option). That works out to only about $3.33 per person, per meal. That is such a good deal considering that I rarely, if ever, get out of the grocery store without spending $50 (sometimes just for one meal). I downloaded the app, chose our meals, and excitedly waited for delivery. After making and eating all of the meals from our first box, I’ve found that the whole system has some pros and cons. Trying to decide if HelloFresh is right for you? This should help.
Pro: The Meals Were DELICIOUS

Our box included Penne with a Kick in Pancetta-Tomato Arrabbiata Sauce, Lean Mean Chicken and Greens with Rosemary Potatoes and Gremolata, and Meatloaf Balsamico with Mashed Sweet Potato and Green Beans. Each meal was actually really good, and according to MyFitnessPal, fairly healthy. The produce was super fresh and the meat was high quality. They also send more than you need of some of the ingredients, which is nice. I used this week’s leftovers for this quick and easy soup recipe.

Lean Mean Chicken and Greens with Rosemary Potatoes and Gremolata. This was my favorite meal, but required the most prep. Shout out to Baby Daddy for photo cred this week. I was so excited to eat the meals, I forgot to take pictures first!

Con: Prep… So Much Prep

I have never done so much chopping in all of my life. If you aren’t handy with a knife, beware. You’ll need to brush up on your chopping, slicing, dicing, mincing skills. Even as someone who cooks often and is fairly skilled with a knife, I was over it. Be sure to check the prep required for each recipe before choosing what to put in your box.

Pro: No “I Don’t Know, Whatever You Want.”

The most spoken, most hated phrase, among married and long term relationship couples. Seriously, I would rather be punched in the forehead than hear this. The box cut down the options to a manageable three things to choose from.

Con: Picky Eaters Beware

Meatloaf Balsamico with Mashed Sweet Potato and Green Beans turned into Meatloaf Balsamico with (slightly burnt, bummer) Sweet Potato Fries and Green Beans (apparently mashed sweet potatoes are a “no” in our house). This was probably the most “picky eater friendly” of all of the meals. It was also my least favorite.

We are pretty adventurous eaters in our house, so HelloFresh really helped us mix up our weekly meals, without us having to worry about not liking what we got. The meals aren’t exactly your standard meat-and-potatoes type food, so if you have kids that freak out if their food has “thingies” in it, or if the word “Gremolata” freaks you out, this probably isn’t for you.

Pro: I Didn’t Have To Leave My House

Seriously, huge huge pro, here. This pro pretty much trumped all of the cons for us.

Con: The App Is Not The Most User Friendly

This may be a bug with only my phone, or I might be doing something wrong (I tend to be a little technology illiterate). I found several times that I would make a change on the app, then log into my account on the computer to find that the change hadn’t been saved. Ugh. At least I caught it before the box was shipped. I also found that some of the things on the app were hard to locate. Again, could be me. I miss flip phones.

Pro: Less Food Waste

Penne with a Kick in Pancetta-Tomato Arrabbiata Sauce. This was incredibly light and delicious. It also made just the perfect amount for the two of us.

For anyone who doesn’t like to eat leftovers, HelloFresh is a great option because they send enough to make two servings without much (or any) leftovers. I know we always say we are going to eat leftovers and I end up throwing the moldy remains away a week or so later. In general, cooking for only two people is hard, and HelloFresh makes it a lot easier.

Con: Lots Of Kitchen Equipment Needed

Do you own a zester? Several large, medium, and small bowls? How about a strainer? Large pan, medium pan, baking sheet, large pot, medium pot, cutting board, chef’s knife, paring knife, and grater? These are all things that I needed to make my first week of meals. If you don’t have a well stocked kitchen, you’ll either need to purchase these things, or HelloFresh isn’t for you. You can look at the prep for the recipes that you have chosen before your box arrives to ensure that you have all of the tools that you need.

Pro: You Can Try It For $20

You can use my code ASHLWILS4 to get $40 off your first box, so you can give it a try and see if you like it without spending the usual $60. You are free to cancel your subscription after the first box if it’s not for you, or if the usual $60 is a little more than you’d like to spend. Personally, $60 is less than I would usually spend on groceries anyway, so it ends up being a pretty good deal.

BONUS!

I’ll be sending out three FREE boxes! To enter for a chance to receive your first box completely free, comment on this post and subscribe to the email list! For an extra entry, you can share the post on Facebook or Pinterest (please include your social media name in the comment if you choose to share the post). Note: receiving the free box automatically enrolls you in a weekly subscription, so remember to cancel if you don’t want to continue your subscription!

Overall, we enjoyed our first box and plan to continue our subscription, at least for a while. The food is good, even if the prep sucks. Having it delivered to my door makes my week so much easier, and since it’s only 3 meals, we are still free to go out to eat or make something else we feel like having a couple times every week. It makes work nights a breeze, and all but eliminates the dreaded “I-Don’t-Know-Whatever-You-Want”. I recommend at least giving it a try. Canceling your subscription is easy and you can even keep your subscription but “skip” weeks if you are going to be out of town, have guests, don’t have the money, or just don’t feel like getting one. Don’t forget to use my code to get your first box for $20! Do you use HelloFresh and love it? Hate it? Do you use a different “food box”? Share in the comments!

Xoxo,

The Crispy Mama

 

Hi, I’m New Here.

Hello world! Welcome to The Crispy Mama. I can’t wait to share some of my most precious mommy moments with you all along with quick weeknight recipes, my favorite baby and mama products, helpful tips for pregnancy and parenting, and lots more! Check back soon for my first post, “Things I Swore I’d Never Do… Until I Did.” Until then…

Xoxo,

The Crispy Mama