Five on Friday | Kicking the Cold Bug

Fall is officially on the horizon – our house was hit by our first cold. Poor Blake was the first to get it and my husband was the next. I’m usually so much better about prepping our immune systems but I got lazy – and here we are! You better bet I’m pulling out all the stops for Aubrey and I so we can avoid it and get the other two healthy ASAP!

In light of the coming seasons, my Five on Friday is dedicated to ways we are staying on top of our wellness using essential oils. I’ve mentioned here and there that our family uses oils in our home, but this is a little more in depth! If you’ve been curious about oils or have your starter kit and want to expand to more this will be great! You can also read a little more about oils by going to the “Essential Oils” tab in my top menu! There is a general overview and information about joining me also! You can also follow along with my oily Instagram for more tips and tricks!

one | I spent an afternoon this week refilling all of our roller ball bottles with immunity boosting blends that we put on the bottoms of our feet each morning (& night now that we need some extra help). Our most used oil this time of year is Thieves and I can’t tell you enough about its benefits!

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two | Ningxia Red is boost of antioxidant power! Just what out bodies need right now! If I was a quick boost I drink it straight, but lately I’ve been adding a bit of sparkling water and either a drop of Lime Vitality or Grapefruit Vitality! Such a yummy afternoon pick me up! Aubrey’s been having it this week too…I just water hers down a bit so it isn’t as full flavor for her and she loves it and calls it her “vitamin juice”, haha.

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three | Sleep! Sleep is what we all desire around here and when we are kicking a bug or trying to stay healthy I try to get myself and give the girls as much as possible! We start our bedtime routine a bit earlier and I diffuse at their naps too (sometime I don’t always do). Out of the bath, we use the Seedlings Baby Lotion and it has the most amazing calming scent for the girls! (We also put the Immunity roller on the bottoms of their feet or along Aubrey’s spine for an extra boost) Peace & Calming blended with orange helps us wind down while we read books and I’ll talk about their bedtime, diffuser blend next!

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four | At bedtime while dad reads books with the girls, I fill their humidifiers (if they do have the sniffles) and their diffusers. At the moment we are loving oils from the KidScents line! Snifflease is perfect help support their little noses! I’ll add a couple of drops of that with a drop of lavender for a great sleepy time blend! Or for Aubrey who is staying healthy, I’m using Sleepyize with a drop of Cedarwood. LOVE!

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five | Clean clean clean! Even at 2.5 and 13 months, my girls put EVERYTHING in their mouths still! Blake is still exploring and Aubrey uses her mouth as a tool if she needs an extra hand. I use my Thieves Cleaner on just about everything! If they’ve been playing with a few specific things for the majority of the day I try to clean those that night, and I do an all over toy wipe down every few days when they’re sick or every few weeks normally! Also laundry. I feel like Blake’s sheets get all sorts of snot on them, so I’ve been washing them every other day and adding a couple of drops of Thieves oil into the load!

Hope you guys have a happy and healthy friYAY and a wonderful weekend!

BONUS: If you’ve been interested in essential oils or this just intrigued you and you’re ready to jump in, email me and mention this blog post. I’ll get you all joined up on our team with exclusive access to our wonderful support system and a FREE bottle of Thieves  Household Cleaner!

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xoxo

Whitney

Be sure to catch April, Christina, and Natasha!

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Life’s Essentials: Keeping a Routine

As a SAHM, its up to me to structure my day. As much as I love a list and filling my calender, I have to work really hard to not get in a rut. I find that I can let hours pass in the morning playing with the girls, attempting to do laundry or cleaning up the kitchen from the night before. By the time I’ve gotten us together enough to get out of the house, its time for lunch and naps! (for reals my life revolves around nap schedules right now!)

Now that our fall schedule is back in place, I’m trying to get myself into a routine to help our mornings run smoother and to help me feel successful at the end of the day! Whether you’re a CEO of a household or a CEO of a company – everyone wants to feel satisfied with their day, right?  Although the girls are just toddlers, we do have at least one out of the house class or activity everyday so that really helps motivate me to stick with some ground rules! These are some things that I know help our family be more calm and ready for the day and just help keep us all happy and organized!

Disclaimer: this is truly like one big pep talk to myself. By no means do I have it all figured out and this is just a way for me to organize my ideas for myself and feel accountable!

Preparation | “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.” Benjamin Franklin hit the nail on the head with that one. It is so simple, but it is the hardest thing for me to do. Procrastination has been the name of my game for years! Why would I pack our drinks/snacks/lunches the night before when I can do it in the morning when I’m rushing around with two kids at my feet?! Because. I want to feel ready for the day, and not frazzled first thing in the morning.

One load a day | Laundry is a task that I really don’t mind doing, but it can definitely turn into a lofty chore if it let it! Our hamper, the girls’ hampers, sheets, towels…I know everyone has to wash their clothes but why does it feel like we have enough laundry to cover the entire neighborhood for the week?! I’ve found that spending an entire day in the laundry room isn’t fun for me or the kids. So putting in a load in the morning that I can switch over at some point in the day and be done with by nap time is an easy way to eliminate the dread of tackling Mt. Everest once or twice a week!

Set an alarm |  Sleep is a hot commodity around here.  With a 2.5 and a 1 year old in the house, I feel like I’ve been in a constant state of “mombie” for the past few years. We have finally gotten into a good bedtime routine with the girls so that we get an hour or two to ourselves before we go to bed, but I’m still waking up once or twice at night with the little sis.  Even so, having 30-60 minutes to myself before the crazies wake up is a great way to start the day! Hot coffee, I can get ready if I want, empty the dishwasher in peace, or just relax on my phone or computer to blog. Do I still snooze?  Yes. But ultimately I try to remember how good I feel once I’ve had some time to myself first thing.

Keep a clean sink | Do you know how long it takes to put one coffee cup, one plate, and a couple of utensils in the dishwasher? Like 45 seconds. Do you know how long it takes to put an entire day’s worth of dishes in the dishwasher plus clean up from dinner?! It feels like an hour! Throughout the day I find it really easy to just set things in the sink and move on to the next thing. But you know what the bummer is? My mom isn’t coming behind me to wash them all! I am the mom…what?! At the end of the day after dinner, its better for all of us and our bedtime routine if dinner clean up is just that and not from the entire day!

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It has a place | We have a few areas of the house that can easily be considered a drop zone. Did I grab the mail? Set it by the phone. Did I just come in from running errands? Drop everything on the island. Do I have clean laundry? Leave it on the laundry room counter. This may be my worst habit. The kitchen can tend to become the ‘catch all’ area and soon feels like a cluttered disaster that seems like I can’t keep clean. By having a place for everything, it eliminates the clutter. By taking just a few minutes to put things away in their proper place I don’t feel like I have to overhaul the entire house to get it clean. I was watching InstaStories and Kate from The Small Things Blog (k8_smallthings) mentioned that she keeps her house within 10 minutes of clean. So at any point – for example if some company were to say they’re coming – you could get your house picked up within 10 minutes. Such a good rule.

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(In a dream world my kitchen would look like this all the time. It was short lived!)

These are some things I strive for but still have to work on each day.  When I take the time to prepare for my day I feel like the days run smoother and I enjoy my time with the girls more. Do you have any go-to tips for feeling prepped and ready for your day? I’d love to know!

xoxo

Whitney

Head over to Confessions of Parenting to find all sorts of home and family posts that linked up for the first #WanderingWednesday!

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Color Inspiration | September 2017

Color inspiration is a monthly link up brought to you by Sharon from Mama Chit Chat and myself at The Whitney Michaels Blog. We would love for you to join and link up to share all the BLUE that is inspiring you this month! This is the second edition – if you missed the first you can read it here.

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September is here and its full of changes. Changes in schedules, in the season, and the weather (hopefully). Over here in Southern California we are still in full summer heat and the girls and I are soaking up the last few weeks of the season. Blue is the perfect color right now.

BLUE | I bought this dress on clearance at the Gap when Aubrey was just a baby, and I remember thinking how big it was and that it would be so far away that she could actually wear it. Well that went quick, she’s already almost too tall for it! (obviously the dress isn’t online since I bought it so long ago, but this adorable dress with blue embroidery would perfect to add a denim jacket to and transition to fall – and there’s a sale right now!)

BLUE | In a perfect world, I would love to have a light colored couch! Cream, white…basically anything that would get destroyed by two toddlers. Since that obviously isn’t happening, I’m getting my fix in by updating our pillows. Our home decor is mostly neutrals, but I love adding blue around as an accent! I found a couple of burlap looking ones and navy blue at Marshall’s a couple of weeks ago and I love it. I think they can easily transition to fall with the addition of some orange and be good in winter too with forest green or red?

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BLUE | Like the water. With Aubrey doing swimming lessons, she is always asking to go swimming at Grandma’s house! We are spending as much time as possible in the water while the weather is still beautiful enough for it!

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BLUE | Speaking of the pool – let’s talk about how late I am to the “summer body” idea.  I just did a post about my new found motivation and the cute Workout Essentials I bought and I’ve probably mentioned that for the past three years I’ve been either pregnant or breastfeeding and I’ve used that as an excuse to let myself indulge – actually I don’t even think it could be called that at this point. Indulging is something you do now and then. I just eat whatever and don’t move enough! But I’ve almost completely weaned Blake and I’m ready to feel strong, in shape, and to feel like I have some control of my body again! I pulled out our old box of “workout stuff” and popped in the p90x DVD earlier this week. And oh did it hurt so good. That program is a bit tough for me since the workouts are so long, and what mama has time for that?! I had noticed a friend of mine kicking booty and taking her health and fitness seriously (you can follow along with her too on Instagram) and she reached out to me at the perfect time!  She’s going to be my extra push of motivation and accountability as I incorporate fitness back into my routine! I can’t wait to update you on what I think about the Beachbody workouts! They can be accessed anywhere and there are TONS of video and program options! (You can ask Mallory about any of the details – she’s super helpful! Or just jump in with her too here) Anyway, long story longer, this BLUE logo is going to be a big inspiration for me starting this month! I’ll share some of the fun on my InstaStories during nap time workouts!

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I hope your September is full of inspiration and that you have an amazing end to your summer! BLUE is definitely my color and I loved sharing with you! Click the link below to add your BLUE post (open for a week) and we can’t wait to have you for all things BLACK and spooky in October!

Grab the graphic below to add to your post and share!

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Link Up! 

Click here to enter your link and view this Linky Tools list…its a great way to find new blogs and be found!

xoxo

Whitney

Brushing with Plaque HD

Getting ready each day can be a chore with two young girls! As much as I hate to admit it, I cut some corners to save time some days!  I use my fair share of dry shampoo, do an extra deodorant application here and there, and have done a quick wipe down with a baby wipe a time or two.  One thing I cannot ever skip is brushing my teeth! Not only is the idea of oral health important, but who doesn’t love the fresh minty feeling afterwards?!

I’ve had a chance to experience Plaque HD toothpaste and I’m excited to share it with you!

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Plaque HD toothpaste uses Targetol Technology to highlight the plaque on teeth in a vibrant green.  Nothing like a visual guide to get you to brush more thoroughly, right?! I love knowing which areas of my mouth needed some extra attention that I may have been neglecting before!

My least favorite part of going to the dentist is when they scrape the plaque and I’ll be less anxious to go knowing I’m doing a better job cleaning myself!

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I’ve been brushing with confidence knowing that Plaque HD is a natural way to clean my teeth and remove plaque without using harsh chemicals. You can get a healthy mouth too by visiting the Plaque HD website.

xoxo

Whitney

|products used for this post were provided to me, but all opinions are my own|

Workout Essentials

You heard it here first. Somehow from somewhere, I have found some motivation to get moving! I’ve been either pregnant or nursing for over 3 years now and a ‘fit pregnancy’ was never really my thing, unfortunately. I’ve always been an active person and I enjoy feeling strong and fit, it just hasn’t been my priority. It should be though. In the words of Elle Woods, “Exercise gives you endorphins, and endorphins make you happy! Happy people don’t go shoot their husbands [or yell at their kids so much]”.
As difficult as it is to start, once I’m going I know I’ll feel so good! I’ve invested in a few supportive, comfortable, and totally cute pieces that I know will up my workout game. If its good enough for Carrie Underwood to workout in, its good enough for me, right?!
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I’ve been eyeing the CALIA by Carrie Underwood collection via Instagram and on occasion at Dick’s Sporting Goods, and finally jumped in. I got a couple different styles of sports bras, as well as a pair of leggings, and some shirts. The shirts so far have felt soft, and cool and the bras are supportive but comfortable! There are some new releases for fall so a few of the older items are on SALE!
I’ve had the Fit Bit Blaze for a couple of years but haven’t used it to its full capacity yet because, well I haven’t been working out! I’ll keep you posted on how it works out.
Water has been essential for me for a long time because I’ve been growing and feeding little humans and they require a lot from my body. I love using a glass bottle because I add essential oils to it to change things up and be more motivated to drink more! It also tastes so refreshing to have some citrus flavor!
Cool Azul will also be a new addition. I’ve made my own balms with essential oils and coconut oil for muscle support and relief, but I can’t wait to try this sports gel formulated especially for physical support.
Do you have any workout favorites that keep you motivated? I can’t wait to share my progress along the way! You can follow along with me on my Instagram and Facebook Page!
xoxo
Whitney

Five on Friday

TGIF! In the life of a SAHM, Friday’s don’t necessarily have the traditional meaning of being the last day before a couple of days off. Even though its the weekend, the girls still expect to be fed, entertained, and taken care of…can you believe that?! haha…relax, its a joke. But in all seriousness, this week was one for the books so a couple of days without scheduled activities is weekend enough for me!

one | The girls went back to school this week! Blake started in her own big girl class and Aubrey started in the two day 2s class! It is a bigger time commitment from me as its a co-op campus, so I participate – but I am super excited for them!

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two | Keeping on the subject of kids activities, we also started Gymnastics up again for Aubrey too! This girl loves to run wild and giving her 45 minutes of jumping, balancing, hanging, ect is just what she needs! I typically will post some of her “skills” on InstaStories as its happening, lol.

three | I am making the switch to a Mac! I’ve had a laptop PC forever but knew its life was running out. I’m excited to have a big girl computer, lol. I feel like it’s going to be trying to understand another language at first, but I cannot wait to learn! Any tips for making the transition easier?

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four | Here in So Cal we are having miserably hot weather! Not only does it make me want to hide inside with the AC on all day, but cooking is a struggle! Who wants to stand over a hot stove top or turn on an oven? Last night I was doing the last minute scramble to find something for dinner and made the perfect hot weather meal that brought me back to my childhood – I call it Tuna Surprise. Yup, I’m now the mom that puts things on the table with “surprise” in the title. Aka: mom didn’t have anything planned and this is what I found to throw together and call a meal!

1 box of Rotini pasta | 1-12 oz can of tuna | 1 c mayo | lemon juice from 1/2 a lemon | 1/2 of an onion diced | about 3/4 c of diced pickles | 1 cup of peas | 3 colby jack string cheeses diced

I cooked the pasta and added the frozen peas at the very end before I drained it just to defrost them. Diced up the other ingredients and mixed it all together. Literally the easiest meal that I scrounged around the pantry and fridge to find the ingredients for! (I even got the lemon from my girlfriends tree around the corner!) We ate it right then but today we will have some leftovers cold for lunch!

five | If you need a little tough love in your life, or to be inspired by a gal who is awesome and just gets shit done, you’ve got to become friends with Rachel Hollis! She runs a successful media company, has a podcast, writes books, has a cook book, takes care of herself and her health, oh yeah – and has a husband and 4 kids that love her!! Honestly she is the epitome of no excuses and choosing to work hard to be happy. She is a woman who has created a wonderful life for herself and doesn’t let typical stereotypes or society’s perception of a woman’s role define her. Love following along with her for a boost of confidence! She does a Facebook Live video every morning at 6 am and her InstaStories are both funny and motivating! #chictribe

Hope you guys have a happy friYAY and a wonderful weekend! Still

Be sure to catch April, Christina, and Natasha!

Best Day Ever | Show and Tell Tuesday

Have you ever dreamed of your perfect day? Probably includes a tropical destination or sleeping in half the day, maybe? I’ve always been a homebody, but now more than ever in this season of life does a slow and quiet day sound the best.

On the Best Day Ever, I would wake up feeling rested…maybe 8 am? Not too late, because we don’t want to waste the precious hours of this day – but not too early, because, well…mama needs some sleep! The coffee would be ready for me to pour and drink HOT with just the right amount of vanilla creamer and my hubby would have already cooked the bacon outside on the BBQ so the whole house didn’t stink! We would all eat pancakes (chocolate chip, obviously), bacon, and eggs.  The girls would keep all of their food either on the plate or in their mouth – not the floor! After breakfast – the girls would play, the kitchen would get perfectly cleaned by someone other than me, and I’d go shower and get ready. Not just rinse off and put on mascara…no no. A full shower – shave, shampoo, the works! I’d do my hair and wear just enough makeup to make me feel good. When I was done, the girls would also be ready with the diaper bag packed – again, by someone other than me. Do you notice a theme?

We would all go out as a family, somewhere that we could walk, shop, play, and have lunch. Probably the Ventura Harbor. The weather would be cool enough to wear sweaters but warm enough for sandals, partly cloudy and definitely no wind! Lunch would have to be at Andria’s Seafood – fish and chips is one of our favorites from there!

After lunch we head home for the girls to nap. I’d get out to get my nails or hair done – I love having a fresh cut and manicure! In the afternoon we would have some friends and family over to BBQ. I love to spend time on our patio and all sitting together at a big table for dinner. Carne asada tacos, fresh guac with chips, and Corona’s or Margarita’s for everyone!

The girls would have baths after dinner, read books with their aunties and go to bed without a fight at 7:30. The adults would listen to music, hang out by the fire pit, and keep the margaritas flowing. By 10:00 I’d be in the softest jammies ever from Old Navy (like these) and in bed with freshly cleaned sheets. Does the “Best Day Ever” continue into the night? If so, I’d sleep. All night. Uninterrupted.

I feel more relaxed just thinking about it all! What would you do for your Best Day Ever? You can link up with Andrea at Momfessionals.com.

Happy Tuesday!

Whitney

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