Thursday, April 19, 2018

Friday Favorites!



Happy Friday!

What better way to kick off a Friday than to share some of my recent favorite items, mama and kiddie related! 

First up, the tulle skirt I wore for Easter.

I can't begin to express how obsessed I am with this skirt and will soon own the many color variations of it. ;) I was worried it would be too "poofy" but it falls very nicely. Plus you can't go wrong with an elastic waist. You can find it at Charlotte Russe, here




Impress Press-On Manicure

ImPress Press-on One-Step Gel manicures are a complete game changer!  I can't believe I was able to get 12 days out of this one package; I was so impressed! I actually gave a set away over on my IG and FB page. You can purchase them at your local Target, Walmart and of course,  Amazon here.


Jameson's ThinkBaby Sippy Cup



Jameson recently transitioned to a straw sippy cup and ThinkBaby is our favorite!  We actually had a few for Brayden and knew when Jameson was ready, ThinkBaby was going to be it!  It's easy for him to grasp and drink from, plus it doesn't leak!


Sophia's Baby Alive Super Snack Snackin' Lily


Sophia received this doll set as a gift for her birthday and she is obsessed!  Unfortunately, the two jars of playdough contain wheat so she couldn't use it.  We just replaced it with Model Magic so she could create food for her baby and change its diaper (it poos the food out.. It's gross concept, but she loves it!  lol).



The Greatest Showman



The entire Nikola Clan can't get enough of this movie or its soundtrack.  The story of P.T. Barnum's (yes, Barnum as in circus) vision is truly inspiring and as a musical is very entertaining.  You will not regret having a movie night with the family to watch this, promise!  You may even download the soundtrack and play it on your Alexa, just like us ;)

What are a few of your favorite things right now?

Thursday, March 29, 2018

When you can’t do it all...

“I can’t do it all” has been a phrase I’ve caught myself saying a lot recently.  No mama wants to admit she can’t balance everything, but I am here to tell you it’s OK to say that and I think it’s pretty normal to feel it.. at least that’s what I tell myself #lol

With all that said, I have to address the elephant in the room.  Within the past week, I’ve had several people reach out, asking if I’m still assisting others meet their health and fitness goals.

At this time, I am not offering my services simply because I have zero time to commit to helping others achieve their health goals. I am still affiliated with Beachbody because I love my shakes and swear by the fitness programs.  

If I had the time to fit it in, I 100% would #ilovedit

Since we added another Nikola to our Clan, I haven’t yet found a way to fit that back into my schedule.  It just wouldn’t be fair to do it now because I can’t dedicate the time it needs to actively coach and work my business...I can’t do it all #imok

I apologize to those who looked at me for motivation and inspiration.. I do believe 100% in living a healthy and fit lifestyle and although it can have its challenging moments, it can be done... I hope to continue to motivate and inspire you in different ways- not just when it comes to health and fitness 😉

I will continue to document my journey in the health and fitness world, sharing the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Currently, I am incorporating 3-4 days of yoga (mainly to keep myself sane) and following a whole new nutrition plan that’s help me get past my prepreggo weight. #whoopwhoop, but that’s a whole new post coming soon!

For those who trusted and allowed me to help you meet your health and fitness goals, THANK YOU!  You taught me so much that I simply can’t put into words.. I applaud you in taking those steps to a healthier you and encourage you to sweat, sparkle, and shine! 

And mamas, don’t be ashamed of not being able “to do it all.”  Chances are, we aren’t realizing we are ALREADY doing so much! #truthbomb 


Friday, March 2, 2018

Gluten free donuts for my girl!




By popular demand, I am sharing my recipe for the homemade gluten free donuts I made yesterday with Sophia and Brayden. 

On Thursday afternoon, I needed a little pick-me-up so I decided to stop by Dunkin Donuts to get a coffee.  Of course, Brayden needed a donut and Sophia asked if I could make her gluten free donuts one day. 

My response?

"Of course, baby doll!"

As a mama with a child with food limitations, I don't ever want her to miss out on foods I know I can make gluten free.

So I did some searching on Pinterest and was able to find this recipe and put my little spin on it! 

You can catch out our two videos via our Facebook Page as we were making them (here) and then decorating them (here).


Makes: 24-32 donuts (depending if you make donuts or donut holes)
Nutrition Facts for Donut- NOT including icing and toppings
Servings 31.0
Amount Per Serving
calories 121
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 2 g3 %
Saturated Fat 1 g7 %
Monounsaturated Fat 0 g
Polyunsaturated Fat 0 g
Trans Fat 0 g
Cholesterol 18 mg6 %
Sodium 45 mg2 %
Potassium 44 mg1 %
Total Carbohydrate 23 g8 %
Dietary Fiber 1 g2 %
Sugars 7 g
Protein 2 g4 %
Vitamin A3 %
Vitamin C0 %
Calcium3 %
Iron1 %
* The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet, so your values may change depending on your calorie needs. The values here may not be 100% accurate because the recipes have not been professionally evaluated nor have they been evaluated by the U.S. FDA.

You need:
  • 4 cups Gluten-Free All Purpose Flour (I used Bob's 1-1 Baking Flour)
  • 6 teaspoons gluten-free aluminum-free baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup Agave Nectar or any unrefined sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil or butter melted 
*To spice up some of the donuts, I made some with blueberries and chocolate chips.

Icing:
  • 1 cup of powdered sugar
  • 1-2 T of milk (almond milk/coconut milk would also work)
Toppings:
  • Anything!!
  • Cheerios
  • Cinnamon Chex
  • Marshmallows

Do this:

  1. Preheat oven to 425 and grease a donut pan, (I didn't have one.  Watch my video to see how I improvised) muffin tin, or cookie sheet (to make donut holes). 
  2. Mix together flour, baking powder, salt,  cinnamon, and nutmeg.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat together vanilla, eggs, milk, and agave nectar until thoroughly combined.
  4. Add coconut oil or butter and beat again until mixed well.
  5. Slowly add flour mixture and mix on low until everything is combined.
  6. Fill the prepared donut pan, muffin tin or cookie sheet and bake for 12–15 minutes- they should turn slightly brown on top.
  7. Let cool on a drying rack.
  8. Once cooled, mix together milk and sugar to make the icing.  Then dip each donut into the icing and add whatever toppings you wish. 
  9. ENJOY

Helpful hints:

Sophia and Brayden decorated the donuts so I lined their working area with parchment paper- called for easy cleanup. 

Be creative with what you put in and on them!  I even thought about adding some bacon!! #addedprotein

I'm storing half them in ziplock bags and then freezing the other half for a nice treat another day. 



Please let me know if you use this recipe- I'd love to hear how yours came out!



Saturday, January 13, 2018

A little slap in the face.. #goodslaptho

Although I’m two weeks late, Happy New Year!!

I have to admit.. I’ve been in a bit of a funk recently.

The whole working-mama / balancing life / not being able to blog (as you can see with my previous posts #itried), workout, or do things that I had more time to do

has been quite exhausting and I KNOW it should be because it comes with the territory... But sometimes, it does get to me because I do like to feel I have a good grasp on everything...

Recently tho, I feel my grasp isn’t all there... #thestruggleisreal

One of the biggest reasons why it’s hitting me especially hard is because Jameson and I are battling yet another thrush experience #iwanttocry

I started feeling “it” (you’ll never forget it if you experienced this) on New Year's Eve and I thank my lucky stars, both Jameson and I were able to start our medication the following day.  I immediately started upping my probiotics, Kombucha, Apple cider vinegar shots and cutting out processed foods and refined sugars.

Ringing in 2018 with Jameson and his god mommy!

Not that I’m at all a doctor or an expert in this, but I have a feeling what caused it...

Two things- my diet plus latch issues.

Diet- It was the holidays and of course, there’s way too many sweets around... So what’s a mama to do?  Indulge a bit too much...A little fun fact- yeast thrives on sugar...NYE is when I put 2-2 together since I was devouring a few brownies and way too much cannoli chip dip. #REDFLAG

So there’s THAT and then add Jameson’s poor latch.

Jameson has a shallow latch and because of this, he has caused blanching (nipple damage) which can turn into thrush. (for more info on this whole craziness, check this out).  It healed nicely after my first experience because I was pumping at work, rather than nursing.  However; while on our holiday break, I nursed him on-demand since he was sick plus cutting two teeth #hewantedhismama
my teething boy
Sweets + blanching from excessive nursing = Thrush (in my opinion)

There’s nothing more frustrating than having to boil/steam clean all pump parts, bottle pieces, and teething toys on a daily basis.  Plus changing nursing pads after every pump/feed, wash everything after one use in hot water, this list goes on... #illstopcomplainingnow

However...

I learned there is good to all this......

Let me explain.

Over on my Facebook page, I shared my first experience with thrush and blanching...
the good, the bad, and the ugly.

Within the past few weeks, I’ve had two mamas contact me, asking questions as they were currently battling thrush or similar symptoms.

We chatted and although it totally stinks to be going through this, we realized we weren’t alone and it was actually “comforting”(in a way), to know others struggle with breastfeeding- no matter if it’s the first or third baby...

After sharing our stories, I couldn’t help but think back as to why I started this blog.

Five years ago, I decided to share my interests in fashion, beauty, DIY, fitness & nutrition, and Mamahood.  I want to offer other mamas encouragement, inspiration, and certainly a few giggles or two, as we embark on this journey of raising mini-versions of ourselves.

So although this experience had me feeling as if I wasn’t winning at this whole, mamahood game, it was a nice slap in the face- reminding me that DUHHH... you’re not alone and it’s OK to have moments where it’s not going perfectly as planned!  The mommyhood tribe is strong and we lift one another in more ways than one!

Thank you, mamas, for the sweet reminder.  Mamahood is one crazy ride but it has its sparkling moments.
They’re worth it!



Saturday, December 16, 2017

Favorite Things: Gluten Free Goodies for Miss Sophia

Anyone who knows Sophia knows she loves her dessert after dinner #takesafterherdaddy
We are so thrilled to have stumbled upon a LOCAL, yes, local, gluten free pastry business that makes the most delicious gluten free treats, Mad Batters Pastries. 
I first came across these pastries at our local deli and bought a variety to try. They were deeeelish, so I immediately looked them up on Facebook.  I chatted with the owner, Kristen, for a bit and thanked her for keeping those with dietary restrictions in mind #thankyou 
I ordered a platter of cookies from Mad Batters for Jameson’s baptism and am considering about getting some for Christmas. 

For my local mamas, Mad Batters Pastries are sold throughout the Hudson Valley.  Check out this link for locations...
Thank you, Mad Batters for making delicious treats for our girl to love (and not give me anxiety after she eats them!)

Thursday, December 14, 2017

Favorite things: Magnolia

After seeing the latest edition of Magnolia Journal
(Isn’t this image breathtaking?!?)

I couldn’t help but finally start reading the book, “The Magnolia Story”.
(I only got it a year ago) #opppsie
I’m not done with it yet, but I can tell you, Joanna and Chip’s story of starting her store, Magnolia, is inspiring!  Love how Chip supported her, no questions asked, while she thought this vision of her store was more of a “dream”.  
I’m not a “die-hard” Fixer Upper watcher because quite honestly, I’m not completely gaga over the whole farmhouse/rustic feel in a home... However, I can say Joanna has inspired some of my future DIY projects #thankyoujoanna. 
 And their new collection at Target, Hearth & Hand with Magnolia, may make an appearance in the Nikola home. #donttellandrew
Anyone else a fan of Joanna and Chip Gaines?
#couplegoals

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Favorite Things: Andrew loves his Jeep

When I asked my husband, Andrew, what is one of his favorite things, there was hardly any hestation when he said, “My Jeep”.  #duhiknewthat


I am not surprised.  It’s been his dream to own a Jeep Wrangler for years and when he finally decided to invest in one, I laughed thinking, “How silly must we look, rocking two car seats in a Jeep with its top off?!”

Fast forward one year later, we’re measuring the backseat to make sure another car seat can fit in the back #jamesondrewenterstheworld

Luckily, our Diono car seats are awesome and can accommodate Jameson’s seat so we can be THAT family, rocking in the Jeep, three car seats deep! 

When asked why the Jeep is on-top of his favorite list...

  1. Top off, doors off..nothing better than feeling the wind and sun beating down while cruising. 
  2. Off-Road.. Brayden and I had too much fun the other day driving through the snow..
  3. Memories we make in it...whether it’s just the kids and I driving to school singing Bruno Mars, or a family trip to get some ice cream, the Jeep is fun... and Babe, don’t tell me you don’t like to drive it and do the “Jeep Wave” when you pass another Jeep!”

Haha, he’s got a point.. it’s a Jeep thing... #ifeelspecial