The Empty Chair

I had a goal. A goal to give my baby breast milk for twelve months. Whether that may be through bottle or breast. With my first one, I pumped milk for 8 months but with so much we had saved up, we pretty much made it to twelve months with JUST breast milk. With my second, I wanted to do it similarly. As Abbie’s birth was quickly approaching, I had my mind made up that I was going to give breast feeding a shot. I forewarned myself that I would at least try but if she didn’t latch or I was getting too frustrated with trying that I would stop.

Breastfeeding is HARD, boy is it. No one ever tells you how hard breastfeeding actually is. All you hear is how good it is for your baby and how the bond between you and your baby will strengthen. I didn’t know there would be more sleepless nights with me crying in my bed because my boobs hurt than actual restful  nights. I didn’t know that I couldn’t go anywhere without my baby because she was exclusively breastfeeding. Worst of all, I didn’t know that I could get so upset for her not latching, that I would yell at her.

If only I had someone to tell me back then that I was going to make it to eighteen months. I guarantee that a lot less tears would have been shed. During month zero through seven, my nightly routine of bathing and feeding her became a two hour deal. It became very draining since I would be away from my family for two hours EACH NIGHT just to get her down to sleep. She would eat for about 45 minutes and then doze off while I was rocking away in the chair. Right as I put her in her bassinet, she’d wake up. I didn’t know what else to do but to start all over again with nursing her for another half hour. That was my night; just me, my chair and my baby.. each and every night. But like all else, I knew this too shall pass.

Each week, it became easier and easier to put her down. After we got our bedtime routine down to under an hour, things were more enjoyable and I began to LOVE our time we had together, just her and I. Breastfeeding became a bonding moment that I looked forward to every night.

EIGHTEEN MONTHS. The reason I keep saying it is because I am so damn proud of myself. After the twelfth month, I often got asked by my husband and other family members when I was going to stop. I just politely told then that I would be done when she is done. Side note: When did it become the “norm” to stop ALL breastfeeding at twelve months? I don’t think I’ll ever understand that.

Everything comes to an end at some point and that day was four days before her eighteen month birthday. If I said I was completely thrilled about being done with breastfeeding, I’d be lying. I think it was harder for me to let go of this phase of life than it was for her. I guess in a way I didn’t want ‘our moments’ to end. However, I knew our breastfeeding journey was soon coming to an end when she was becoming less and less interested in latching for more than 5 minutes. It was the perfect win-win for both of us to draw a line in the sand and stop.

So for now, the rocking chair where we once spent hours each night together, remains empty. Does she still ask for ‘boobies’ if she sees me naked? Always. Would I ever go back and not breastfeed her? Never. I feel there will always be a special bond that only her and I share and for that I am so grateful.

Xox,

Marlee

*Mamas, this post is in no way promoting breastfeeding over bottle fed over formula fed babies. This post was just simply just share my journey of hardships and joys throughout my breastfeeding experience. I support ALL mamas because we are in this together!

” As moms, we are in it together — raising the future. We are a tribe of future makers. So let’s support each other.” Marrisa Hermer

Wakeup and makeup.. in less than 15 minutes

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Isn’t there something about putting a little makeup on that makes the day so much better? There is for me at least.

Being a working mom of two, I am always looking for ways to cut my time that I spend getting ready.. because who has that much time anyways? Don’t get me wrong, there are times when I like to experiment with other kinds of makeup for occasions like date night or a night out with my girls, but for every day use I like to keep it as simple as possible.

Here’s is my 15 minute makeup routine:

  • I ALWAYS ALWAYS start with a clean face. This is a big deal for me. I didn’t used to do this but now that I do I see a huge difference in the longevity of my makeup.
  • Moisturize and prime. Again another step that I thought was pointless, BUT IT IS NOT. Trust me, you will notice a difference in your makeup life if you add this step in your routine.
  • Foundation. I now use a cream based foundation that I absolutely LOVE. This stuff covers everything! I do avoid using foundation under my eyes and on my eyelids since I use concealer for those things. Layering concealer over foundation will cause unwanted creases.
  • Conceal don’t feel. ( I just watched Frozen this morning with my little one so I had to write that haha) Okay, no but really. Concealer is my life. Without this little piece of heaven, I would like a homeless zombie. I have mad bags under my eyes because, well I’m a mom. My lightweight waterproof concealer hides tiredness without making it look too cakey. I think the biggest tip I have about concealing is finding the RIGHT brush to apply it with! BONUS TIP: Apply concealer in a triangle shape underneath your eyes to get the best results!

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  • Apply setting powder (aka translucent powder). Setting powder is another big thing for me. If I forget this step, because I sometimes do, I definitely regret it later on. The translucent powder adds a matte finish to your makeup to decrease the oil shine. I mainly focus on my forehead and chin because those are my oil driven problem areas.
  • Fill in Eyebrows. Ive been contemplating doing microblading on my eyebrow so I can eliminate this tip all together, but something about tattooing my facing freaks me out. So until then, I will manually fill in my own eyebrows. This is also a very important step in my makeup routine. My eyebrows need to be done or else I don’t feel complete.
  • Bronzer. This is a new friend of mine. Bronzer was never part of my everyday makeup routine until one of my good friends turned me on to it a while back. Now I use it every day!
  • Blush, blush, blush. I don’t think there is a day I go without wearing my blush. I currently rotate through three different blushes depending on my mood. Pink, mauve, and a nudist pink.
  • Mascara. I recently just found the perfect application process for my mascara after literally YEARS of trial and error. I first apply a one step mascara to my lashes. before that dries, I then apply a two- step mascara (fiber lashes). Using this technique in this order has transformed my eyelashes and I get asked every day if my lashes are fake.
  • Last, but not least is finishing spray. I actually use my primer, as stated above, as my finishing spray as well!! Its so versatile!

And THAT’S IT! It takes me 12 minutes to do all of this. Twelve minutes to not feel and look like a zombie anymore.

Scroll down to see my favorite products and where to purchase them!

I hope you enjoyed these tips. If you have any other tips on makeup routines or application, comment below! I’d love to hear!

Xox,

Marlee

Facewash

Moisturizer

Translucent powder

Primer/ Setting spray

Foundation

Concealer

Benefit Goof Proof Brow Pencil

Bronzer

Hot Mama Blush

Mascara (one step): Voluminous Butterfly Sculpt

Mascara (two step):Voluminous Superstar X Fiber