December Blog Goals

December Blog Goals

I spent most of November focusing on my pregnancy and getting through each day so I blogged as much as I could but my work reflected my lack of attention. My blog numbers went down but my Pinterest views have been increasing since joining some group boards. For the rest of my social media, some numbers went up a few and a some went down a few. I really enjoyed my vacation savings series and starting the DIY gift series which seems to be a hit with my readers.

Here is how my numbers compared from October to November

Blog Stats:

October Page views: 3.3K                             November Page views: 2.7K

October Visitors: 2.1K                                  November Visitors: 1.8K

October Likes: 41                                          November Likes: 41

October Comments: 164                              November Comments: 83

October Most Popular Post: Setting & Keeping A Vacation Budget

November Most Popular Post: Hungarian Walnut Kiffle Cookie Recipe with Printable #feedmefriday

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Social Media Numbers

October Instagram Followers: 825                            November Instagram Followers: 838

October Facebook Likes: 896                                      November Facebook Likes: 894

October Pinterest Followers: 642                               November Pinterest Followers: 648

October Pinterest Daily Viewers: 1322                     Nov. Pinterest Daily Viewers: 2208

October Twitter Followers: 2400                                November Twitter Followers: 2404

October Google Plus: 22                                               November Google Plus: 20

October Stumbleupon: 55                                      November Stumbleupon: 55

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Blog Income: WordAds continues to be my only income so far with each month increasing by a few dollars but not enough to cash out yet.

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Here are my goals for December :

Blog Goals:

Mondays will continue to be my day off  until the baby arrives which then will turn into Mom Mondays and Saturday Baby Day will go away. Tuesdays will be Holiday DIY gifts for kids and adults. (Who doesn’t love homemade gifts??) Wednesdays (besides today) will continue to feature gifts from my online Boutique. Thursdays will continue to be Thankful Thursdays and ways or things to be thankful for in our lives. Fridays will continue to be Feed Me Fridays. Saturdays will continue to update everyone on my Pregnancy and maternity life, until Evelynne arrives at least. Sundays will continue with ways to save for a family vacation but will focus on Disney World savings.

My goal for December is basically to get through the month until the baby comes which could be any day now.

Social Media Goals: 

I am working on increasing my Instagram followers, likes and comments through a few different groups and pods. I need to gain back some of the followers that I lost on Facebook and increase my other followers as well. I really don’t know how much I will get accomplished between the holidays and the baby coming.

Income Goals: 

I have joined a few affiliate and influencer sites to help with my attempt to gain sponsorship. I do have my first Influencer box on its way which is unpaid but the products will be great to review. I am really hoping that I will get to start reviewing baby products when she makes her arrival!

I know that this is the season to create gift guides but instead of featuring those gifts on my blog, I am featuring them on my Facebook Page through my Amazon affiliates account. I am hoping to grab my first AA sale soon.

I am still finding ways to increase my income and I am so thankful for the guidance of the Mom Bloggers Tribe because I would be so lost without their help and support. Each day is a growing experience and I can’t wait to grow with all of you!

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Thankful For The Good In Life #thankfulthursday

Thankful for

I want to start out by saying Happy Thanksgiving to everyone. Whether you are American and celebrate Thanksgiving or you are from another country and don’t celebrate this holiday, everyone has something to be thankful for today. What are you thankful for today?

Being Thanksgiving, I am thankful for so much good in my life. As stressful as life has been this past year or even in the past few months, there is so much to be thankful for in my life.

I am thankful for my husband that has had to deal with so much lately including a last-minute wedding.

I am thankful for my children who always keep me on my toes and teach me something new everyday.

I am thankful for my family who has been there to help and support us during this difficult pregnancy.

I am thankful for my friends who know that even if I disappear from the world, I appreciate everything they do and the encouraging words they always have for me.

I am thankful for so many things in my life that I can’t list them all but those are the most important ones today. What are you thankful for today?

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Thankful for My Shower #thankfulthursday

Thankful for MyShower

It is Thankful Thursday and as a pregnant mom, I am Thankful for my shower! Yes, you read that right…. My Shower! My shower time is where I get my mommy time right now. It is my happy place! Do you have a happy place?

My shower time started when I was pregnant with Danyella and was told no baths and no standing for more than 5 minutes in the shower. So, I began to sit in the shower so I could enjoy the steam and water for more then a few minutes. The water dripping on me was like being outside in the rain. Sometimes we need to just feel that peace and be one with the water. This continued after Danyella was born because it became a place where I could almost meditate, relax and clear my mind.

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Being pregnant with Baby Evelynne has been uncomfortable between the ongoing morning sickness, growing belly and having a baby pushing against my ribs. Add that to just the stress of needing to move, starting school and being out of work. My shower time is my sanctuary. There are times where I can just sit for an hour or more. The times where I need to take a quick shower, they just suck the life out of the moment of getting out of the shower. Like it is unfinished business that I need to take care of still. My hour-long shower times will be cut shorter after the baby comes but until then I will be enjoying my shower times.

What are you thankful for today?

 

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Finding Ways to be Thankful

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Today is #thankfulthursday and I am not going to lie, I have had a hard time coming up with one thing that I am thankful for. Part of this is because some of the things make me feel materialistic and other things feel like given things in life.

Yes, everyone is thankful for the basics in life like food, water, shelter and clothing. Thing is, there was a time in my life where I was living in my car and lived in a homeless shelter. There is a time where I was trying to come up with change just to find money for food. If you look in my drawers, most of my clothes are from 10 or more years ago, from thrift stores or cheap clothing from Walmart. At least I have clothing to wear right now.

Lately, things feel like they have been going in opposite direction that I want which can be so frustrating and makes it hard to find the things to thank the universe or your Higher Power for. Sometimes, you need to step back and remember the basics in life and that the rest is just an added bonus.

My housing situation isn’t ideal right now but at least we have a place to live that allows us to keep our special puppy. We need to move and finding a place that will fit our family and puppy has been the most difficult thing in the world. I wish we had the money to buy the house we are living in or another house but it is a very difficult option right now. All we can do is to continue to look and the right place will find us.

Holding to a meal budget has been such a difficult thing for my entire adult life. I will make a list, purchase what is on the list (online grocery shopping has made this so much easier), stand at the fridge or cabinet and struggle to find something to make or eat. So then I blow the budge out of the water because I end up getting takeout somewhere. I need to learn how to stick to a meal plan, meal budget and learn to be creative with the food I buy because there was a time when I didn’t get a choice of what I ate. I need to be thankful for any and all food and not be so damn picky.

I went from having a job that I could afford to buy my first Coach purse and Jimmy Choo shoes. High end clothing, handbags and shoes was my life over 15 years ago but that all changed in an instant. Don’t get me wrong, I would love to be able to afford those luxury items again but they don’t make my world go round now. I have always been one to shop at consignment and thrift stores which I have found some amazing deals.

I have 2 specific claim to fame for my finds… My first amazing find was a vintage knee-length wool coat that zipped up the left side and had a corset-type ribbon back. My words can’t even describe who gorgeous this coat looked but someone stopped me on the streets of SOHO New York and offered to buy the coat off my back for a client of his (he was a personal stylist). As tempting as the offer was, I cherished that coat and declined. Unfortunately, when I became homeless I lost the coat. My second claim to fame was finding a BRAND NEW WITH TAGS Baby Dior outfit at a Salvation Army store for Danyella. Now when I found this outfit, it was before I even knew she was a girl but I couldn’t resist not buying this amazing outfit and thankfully she was a girl!

Since the only decent, affordable consignment shops (yes there are ones that are way overpriced for used clothing!) are a bit of a drive for me, my options have been limited especially since getting pregnant. I know that there is online shopping but I still prefer to go to a store and try clothes on so I know that they fit right. My go to is either Target or Walmart which sometimes you can feel the (lack of) quality that you are buying with cheap clothing. One good deal I have found at Walmart has been these super-soft, stretchy shirts for $5 for a short sleeve shirt. They had them in basic navy, black, maroon and olive-green colors which I bought XL in each size because they are large enough to cover my growing belly. I was super, super excited to find them in long sleeve (only $6.88) in some Halloween prints and other solid colors which I bought in 1XL and 2XL to keep me going while my belly grows. I wish I could afford the adorable pregnancy clothing on the market but it really isn’t an option when you are out of work for most of your pregnancy so I am sticking to these comfortable, affordable shirts and leggings.

Sometimes we take the basic things in our life for granted when we need to step back and be thankful for these necessities because life could be worse one day or you could have worked your way up from a situation that is worse than it is right now.

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27 Weeks and Low Blood Pressure

27 Weeks

It is my last week in my 2nd trimester and I finally beginning to understand why I have been feeling like well crap. For weeks, I have been told that my blood pressure was just way to low, and I needed to work on making it higher. For pregnant women, you usually hear a doctor be concerned about high blood pressure but there are the rare few that suffer from just the opposite, low blood pressure.

At the Maternal Fetal Medicine office, they have been checking my blood pressure every week when I get my shot. This is where the concern for the continued drop in blood pressure has been voiced the most. Their suggest was to drink a Gatorade everyday to help with my sodium and electrolyte intake which should help my blood pressure rise. The other day, I went to see my regular (delivering) OB and the nurse was concerned that my blood pressure was high. When I asked the numbers, she said it was 121/68 which was high compared to my previous visits. My response was that the Gatorade must be working!

I will admit, it has been extremely difficult for me to drink Gatorade, Powerade or any other ade with electrolytes because I don’t like the after taste and it gives me heartburn. I found a Gatorade called Flow Smooth in 2 different flavors and not only do I like the flavors but there hasn’t been any side effects either! WIN WIN

My OB explained that the low blood pressure was, more than likely, the cause of how uncomfortable and crappy I have been feeling every single day. Low blood pressure has accounted for my dizzy and light headed spells that I frequently have had, some days multiple times a day. I chalked up my shortness in breath to the baby pushing into my ribs and growing bigger but the lower blood pressure actually contributed to my breathing issues. Plus, I can tell it is low when I begin to see spots in my vision. Lastly, it was explained that some of my headaches and general weakness is more than likely from the low blood pressure.

Now that I have been drinking a Gatorade a day, I can definitely feel a difference. The spots and headaches are not as frequent. I still feel pretty weak and dizzy at moments but its been my cue to drink some Gatorade and then I start to feel better or I end up taking a nap. OH a nap sounds so good right now! Ok I am off to take a nap before I have to write a paper tonight.

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Thankful for my OB Nurse #thankfulthursday

stay positive

Wednesdays are my baby doctor appointment days which since July my rear end has been seen by my high risk OB nurse every week. Why you ask am I showing my OB nurse my rear end every week?

Well since I have had 2 preemie babies, my doctors wanted me on weekly progesterone shots that are administered by Maternal Fetal Medicine office. So every Wednesday, I walk into the office, Nurse Charlie gets my shot ready and then I expose my back end. It can be quite embarassing the bigger that I get and the bigger my pants and panties get.

I am sure that Nurse Charlie sees many rear ends every week and it is just another day to her but as a self conscious pregnant woman it is a HUGE (not just my rear end) deal to me. The plan is that I continue my weekly shots until I am 38 weeks (if I make it that long) so I will be exposing myself weekly to Nurse Charlie for another 12 weeks. Oh boy!

Something that I have learned in my pregnancies, is that it is really the nurses that make sure that us hormonal, pregnant are doing what we need to do for our babies and are really good while we grow a human inside of us. When I switched my insurances, my copay for the progesterone shots were over $1000 a month which just wasn’t going to happen now that we are on one full time income. When I brought this up to Nurse Charlie, she is the one that has bent over backwards to make sure that I got the shots that I needed and at a price that I could afford. She is the one that has checked on me at home when I have gone in with bad side effects of the pregnancy like low blood pressure that has been making me light headed and have fainting spells.

I truly can’t thank Nurse Charlie enough for going above and beyond for myself and my baby girl while she is still growing inside my big ole belly. If you are pregnant, make sure you thank your OB nurse because they truly care about their patients, the big ones and little ones.

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Emotional Burnout #MotivationMonday

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It has been a week since I have been able to get a blog post out of me. If you look at my drafts, I started multiple posts but just couldn’t finish them. Yes time was a factor but if I am being truthful, my heart just wasn’t in it to write this past week. Being pregnant, I know that I am more emotional than usual but I would just sit and start crying multiple times throughout the day because this past weekend was my little brother’s 9th anniversary of his death and I was becoming emotionally burned out.

The week leading up to his anniversary is always an emotional one but we keep busy by planning his annual balloon release memorial service and cook out. Add the stress of the pregnancy hormones and the pregnancy itself… my stress level felt like it skyrocketed. Now add that my psych paper this week was on Addiction and basically I just mentally shut down.

More than once my boyfriend found me crying and when he would ask why, all I could muster up was that it was all too much this week and I couldn’t take it. In one week, I dealt with my brother’s death anniversary, my pregnancy complications (had a few close call fainting spells) and one of the Mama’s in my group had to have her twin boys early because of complications (I sat on the couch and cried for hours for those boys who are now in the NICU and getting stronger everyday). I just hit my end and crashed but it felt like every time I did something, I crashed all over again.

Last night was the first night I was able to get to bed and sleep before midnight which was a nice thing for me. I was living off of little sleep and an occasional nap. My poor boyfriend had his head bitten off more than once in an hour for the past week (sorry babe). I had the Mom Emotional Burn Out but this week it is time for recovery and get myself back on track.

Every mom has their emotional burn out moments trust me! Some are definitely not as extreme as mine but we all have them. The key is to let yourself feel your emotions, embrace the discomfort while it lasts and when you are ready, pick yourself up and love yourself again. Motivation Monday!

**On a little side note, my boyfriend has made it without to many scars through this pregnancy and other times so I have to say Happy Anniversary! I love you and everything you do for our family.

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