Spoke Too Soon

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Much Ado About Nothing

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Pregnancy Week 5 in South Korea Versus America

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Accepting the Liebster Award

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Life

Spring Cleaning Series – Cleaning Out the Bedroom

By on April 13, 2017
spring-cleaning-the-bedroom

The long awaited Spring Cleaning Series is here and the first step is cleaning out the bedroom.  I find that the bedroom is easiest to start with.  If you recall my 5 simple steps for a clean home, you will remember that every object needs to have a home of its own.  I recommend you take a look at that post before we start cleaning out the bedroom.

In order to find homes for everything, we need to reduce what we have in the bedroom to only the stuff that will fit in the bedroom.  Are you ready to tackle cleaning out the bedroom?

Things You Need to Toss

Clothes are the easiest to sort through, but in order to do so properly, we need to take everything out into a huge pile.  For the sake of this post, I am assuming you have never done a proper clean out before, but this is vital to know exactly how much clothes you are hoarding and see how much space you have to work with.

I have three dresser drawers for my own use, plus two closet areas I share with my husband. The piles of all my clothes filled every inch of floor space in my living room.  I could not believe how much clothes I had stuffed away.  And everyday I struggled with the classic “I have nothing to wear” issue.

The issue wasn’t that I didn’t have anything appropriate to wear.  The issue was that I had so many clothes, I could never find anything to wear.  If you ever gave your toddler too many choices and saw her struggle, you understand.  Having too many choices is not always a good thing.

piles-of-clothing
Donate the clothes you will no longer wear.

Clothes (Including Socks, Underwear, Jewelry, Accessories)

  1. Toss out anything that is unwearable.  Clothes that show serious signs of wear like holes, tears, and rips should be tossed (or donated for fabric).  Take out any clothes that don’t fit you or things that are “out of style” such that you no longer wish to wear them.  I don’t believe in following trends, so I refer to “out of style” based on your feelings towards the item.
  2. Try to reduce multiples.  If you have four pairs of winter gloves, reduce down to one or two.  Have a ton of scarves or belts?  Reduce those to the ones you really love.  You don’t need 15 pairs of pants.  Reduce, reduce, reduce.  Remember, the less you have, the easier it is to maintain a clean room.
  3. Don’t accept hand-me-downs.  I don’t know if it’s just me, but even as an adult, my mom continues to try and give me clothes that she bought or received that don’t fit her right.  Her excuse, “Look, it looks so much better on you because you are tall,” while in reality these clothes are not my style.  Not something I’d wear.  Not what I want hanging around in my closet.  Save yourself the trouble and do not accept these clothes.  They will just sit and take up precious space in your closet.
cleaning-out-the-bedroom-books-on-shelves
The books you planned on reading, but haven’t yet…will not get read. Donate them.

Books, DVDs, CDs

So, this category may be more relevant to your living room, but I actually have a closet full of shelves and I kept my collection of books, DVDs, CDs, cassette tapes, and video tapes there.  This held everything that I collected since high school.  If you’re really motivated, you can find ways to transfer the data from DVDs, CDs, cassette tapes, and video tapes into digital media and store it on a cloud or hard disk drive.  Now, pick out the stuff you know you will never use again and recycle or donate them.

  1. For books, these would be textbooks and English literature.  Get rid of any magazines that you no longer look at.  From what you have left, keep only the ones that you really enjoy or hold good memories for you, because the books that you plan on reading someday will most likely not get read.  If you do need to read it, you can find a copy at your library or obtain an e-book version.
  2. For DVDs, keep only the ones that you really enjoy or have good memories of.  If you ever need to watch something again, it’s easy to find again through the library system or streaming contents.
  3. For CDs, keep the ones that still play well and you really can’t let go of.  Disc quality actually deteriorates so a CD is not forever.  Isn’t that sad?  Make digital back up copies as soon as you can.  Remember, your goal in all this cleaning out is to have as less stuff as possible.
makeup
Hoarding makeup is a bad idea. These expire after a set time.

Make Up

  1. Makeup has expiration dates that start from the day you first open and use a product.  Once expired, they should be tossed.  That said, I actually don’t do this.  Instead, I make sure to toss products that can’t be used anymore, like dried up mascara.
  2. Try not to hoard up a stash with makeup.  You don’t need four different mascaras.  Get rid of lipstick colors you never wear.  You don’t need all the different makeup brushes.  There’s about three or four kinds of brushes you really need and can use to apply all your products well.

I feel like these three areas cover the majority of stuff in the bedroom, but I don’t claim that it’s a comprehensive list.  What other category of stuff do you need help sorting through?  Let me know in the comments and I’ll be sure to include them in addition to the list for the next room, the bathroom.

spring-cleaning-the-bedroom

The next post in the Spring Cleaning Series will be tackling organization of the bedroom.  Once you’ve reduced the number of stuff in the bedroom, I will give you tips on how to organize everything so that each item has its own home within the confines of your bedroom.  It will feel overwhelming at first, but it is satisfying when you reach the end.  Sign up for Her Life Is Love newsletter to stay up to date with each post as well as receive my personal themed newsletter that includes more fabulous ideas and information.

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Blog Tips | Personal

Beating Blogger’s Block

By on April 11, 2017
6-simple-steps-to-beating-blogger-block

I haven’t blogged long enough to deal with a serious case of blogger’s block, but I have seen some blogs where the blogger has professed to dealing with it.  It got me thinking about what I would try to do if I ever started to feel like I have nothing to say and can’t think of what to do with Her Life Is Love.

6 Simple Steps to Beating Blogger’s Block

  1. Go outside.  As a mommy blogger, I’m often doing my blogging at home.  Changing the scenery is bound to help bring in new inspiration so you can find new things to think about and write about.  I like to go to the Chicago Botanic Garden since it’s a nice area to walk around with a toddler (preferably in stroller) and you can people-watch as well as nature-watch.
  2. Move around.  I’m not a fan of exercising, but I don’t like being lazy.  Physical activity helps wake you up and when you have blood pumping throughout your body well, your alertness goes up and I dare say your brain should be able to think of some inspirational ideas that way.  A good way to do this is dance like nobody is watching to music that you love.  Have your toddler join in.  This is one of the ways I pamper myself.
  3. Reduce the number of posts.  New bloggers are often told that it’s necessary to post daily because search engines love a regularly updated blog.  Or so I’ve been told.  Realistically, posting everyday is tough because I like to make quality posts and everything is done by me.  I aim to post 3 to 4 a week, although lately that has been tough because I’ve been focusing a lot on potty training my daughter.
  4. Take a class.  Learn something new.  This can be a source of fresh inspiration.  Lately, I have been attending Toddler Class with my daughter.  I like it because I get to watch my daughter grow in her socialization skills.  There’s always arts and crafts time, too, so that gives me plenty of ideas for crafty DIY kids projects.
  5. Interact with others.  I mean face-to-face interactions.  So much of being a blogger is having all these interactions behind a computer screen, but meaningful face-to-face socializing is necessary, too. This is a little tough for me since I started blogging to meet other moms online.  I don’t know any moms I can hang out with during the weekday in real life.  Still, I go to the public library with my daughter often and chat with other adults hanging out in the kid’s play area.  Talking with other moms always give me great insight and ideas.
  6. Take a blog break.  If nothing else is working, it’s OK to take a blog break.  This could be one or two weeks where you are on hiatus, but do let your readers know so they don’t think you fell off the face of this Earth and no longer update your blog.  That’s bad blog business.

6-simple-steps-to-beating-blogger-block

In all honesty, I haven’t been posting as much as I would have liked recently.  There’s a couple reasons for this.  First, I’ve been focusing on potty training my daughter.  I think it was worth it because I am finally seeing real, tangible progress.  Second, I have been trying to figure out how to use all my other social media accounts.  One of them has been on the back burner for way too long, so I focused on it by putting up a new video.  Cool fact:  I started YouTube 10 years ago!

 It’s a start and I hope you will subscribe to my YouTube channel and experience Her Life Is Love in a different way.

Are you an active blogger and creator?  What are some good ways you use to get out of a funk?

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Family | Personal

8 Tips to Potty Training a Toddler

By on April 9, 2017
success-potty-training-toddler

This post contains affiliate links (actually, just one), which means Her Life Is Love will receive a small commission if you make a purchase through the link at no extra cost to you.  Read our full disclosure here.

There are two days during the week where I must leave the house with my daughter.  There’s Wednesday, where we go to Toddler Class in the morning, and Sunday, where we go to church.  I read a lot of books, blog posts, and magazine articles on potty training a toddler.  Most seem to support a three-day training regime where you have your child butt-naked the first day, wearing underwear the next, and then go out with pants on and say you have successfully potty trained your toddler.  They also warn not to go back to using diapers once you have started training.  Something about your toddler figuring out they can go back to diapers if they make you annoyed enough.

I have attempted potty training my daughter three separate times using this three-day training regime and failed each time because inevitably, a Sunday or a Wednesday will come around and I’d have to leave the house with my daughter in a diaper.  The “experts” recommend waiting a couple months before starting again.  I made it one of my goals in March to successfully potty train my daughter during Spring Break where I could have the whole week, starting Monday, to devote to potty training.  Of course, life happens, and we didn’t start until Thursday, despite having no Toddler Class that Wednesday.

This time, I didn’t give up and did it the way I felt was right and on day 10, we had gone one full day without any accidents!  My daughter is 28 months old and I can see a diaper-free future ahead of me.  Now, here are the things I’ve learned from our potty training adventures and wish other parents have told me.

Things to Know Before Potty Training a Toddler

I read a lot about how you should have you toddler choose the potty and don’t let it become a toy.  Vice versa, some would say you should let your toddler get used to seeing it around and sit in it.  I want to emphasize to you that there is no one right way.  Potty training a toddler seems like it is a daunting task mainly because you have to actively teach your child to use the potty and your child will have to learn to use the potty.

  1. Your child is ready for potty training when she is able to sing the ABC song.  I’ve read long lists of “signs that your toddler is ready to be potty trained” and they get pretty long.  I would find three or four signs that fit my child, a couple that might be true, and the rest not related to my kid at all.  I had a hard time deciding if the time was right or not.  Our pediatrician gave us a simple way to decide.  If your child can sing the entire ABC song, your child is developmentally ready to learn.
  2. Buy a simple potty chair.  

    This affordable potty chair from Summer Infant is highly recommended by many parents I know and I would have bought one if I hadn’t already bought a musical one.  I bought a fancy musical potty chair and regretted it as soon as we actually started potty training.  This chair (pictured in first Instagram photo at top) plays a musical fanfare whenever one pees or poops into the potty.  It might be the weight pushing the container down that triggers it.  Anyway, the first day where she peed in the potty, the musical fanfare played and it scared her.  Terrified her.  I found out potty training is scary for little ones.  Simple potty chairs that are easy to use and easy to clean are best.  No music and no lid.  Pee shield is up to you, but be aware that if your child tries to sit on the potty chair and ends up sitting on the pee shield, the pain could discourage her from trying to use the potty on her own again.
  3. Potty training a toddler is not a race.  Try not to compare with other toddlers.  I actually knew of several parents who potty trained their kid at 18 months or so and I felt the pressure!  Wait until your toddler is ready (ABC song!) and you are ready.  This is a joint operation.

Tips for Heading Outside the Home

Once your toddler has the hang of things and knows that peeing in underwear and peeing in pants both result in uncomfortable wetness, you might feel ready to venture outside the home.  Our first outing was to get groceries.  Then, we tried going to church.  Here are some tips that are helpful when taking a potty training toddler outside of the home.

  1. Try to encourage your toddler to use the potty before leaving the house.  It’s easier when you know your toddler is leaving the house on a fairly empty bladder.  Keep your first few outings short.  Less than an hour is ideal.  Right now, our longest has been two hours for church.
  2. Don’t stress if your toddler doesn’t go before you have to leave.  Just trust that your toddler is learning her body signals and will tell you when she has to go.  Hopefully she’ll signal with a fair amount of time before release.
  3. Bring along an extra pair of underwear, pants, and socks.  You’ll also want a plastic bag to hold soiled pants and underwear in.  Bring along post-its to cover the sensor for automatic flushes.  You don’t want that scaring your toddler while she’s trying an adult toilet in some strange, new place.
  4. The safe way to protect a car seat differs by manufacturer.  Frankly, it is unsafe to place anything between toddler and the car seat that didn’t come with the car seat.  I know of two car seat brands that provide products to protect the car seat from potty training accidents and have been tested for safety, but I do not own one.  As such, I do not use anything and hope for the best.  If a potty training accident occurs, wash the car seat fabric according to directions in the manual.  You do not want to compromise the safety of your child because you don’t want to clean up an accident in the car seat.  Disclaimer: I am not a certified car seat technician, so I recommend taking your questions to the Car Seat for the Littles Facebook Group.  There’s a separate group for the folks in the UK, since the laws are different.
  5. Bring the potty chair with you, if you can.  At least, bring it along in the beginning until your toddler can handle using an adult toilet at home.  Then, she will be able to handle the ones outside of the home better.  There are portable potty seats you can purchase, too, if you plan on keeping one in your car, stroller, or diaper bag.  Since our potty chair is rather clunky, I’m considering bringing around a potty seat you insert on top of the adult toilet.

8-Potty-training-toddler-tips

 

I hope these tips are helpful.  Good luck on your own potty training a toddler adventure!  If you enjoyed this post, I recommend reading 5 Simple Rules for a Clean Home and 10 Toddler Rules You Must Follow.  I’m currently working on a Spring Cleaning inspired series and will be going through what to toss and how to organize each major room in your home.  Subscribe to my newsletter to keep up to date with the Spring Cleaning series.

Leave a comment and share what you found useful in your potty training adventure.  Any advice on getting a toddler to poop in the potty chair?

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Life

Spring Cleaning Series – 5 Simple Rules for a Clean Home

By on April 6, 2017
spring-cleaning

By the time April hits, Spring cleaning is inevitably on everyone’s minds.  Some may have it as a passing thought that is quickly forgotten, but I am starting a Spring cleaning series for those who are serious about doing a Spring cleaning.  This series will focus on the bedroom, the bathroom, the living room, the dining room, and the kitchen.  We’ll go through the process of cleaning out the stuff you don’t need and how to organize the stuff you are keeping

Her Life Is Love is always a discussion-friendly zone and would love to have your input on what ideas you’ve tried, what worked, and questions you may have.  Feel free to leave comments and I will do my best to get back to you.  Don’t be overwhelmed by the idea of cleaning the whole house.  We’re going to take one room at a time!

5 Simple Rules for a Clean Home

      1. Every object must have a designated home – When every object in your home has a home of its own, you can find what you need easily and know where to return it after each use.  This is important because it helps keep you from creating clutter by developing a good habit of putting things back.
      2. Keep only what you have room for – This is key to keeping your home manageable.  If you only keep the items you have space for, you won’t end up hoarding objects.  Once you manage to find the right balance, you need to donate or toss something whenever you buy or receive another.  I find that having this mindset also helps keep your wallet in check.  You’ll ask yourself if you really need something and if the answer is yes, do you have something you can rid yourself of in order to take the new object in?

        A post shared by Paula (@jintoki) on

      3. Use what you have to display stuff – Try not to purchase storage and organization products.  These encourage shoving stuff into bins and forgetting about them.  I use the lids and bottoms of pretty shoe boxes to help contain and display my stuff. Also, avoid stacking objects.  You will forget what is at the bottom and it will fall out of use.  Worse, you’ll purchase a product, add to your possessions, and then find you have two of the same thing.  At one time, I had three regular scissors and two kitchen scissors.  Instead, try to display everything you own as if it’s a display case at a department store (lay things out).  For example, your drawer of lingerie can have your bras ordered by gradation of color.  If your a dude, do this with your rolled up neckties.  This is an automatic mood booster whenever you need to go through your stuff to find something.
      4. All counters should be clear of stuff – I confess that this is tricky for me.  If I don’t put things back to their home after use, clutter starts to pile up on counters, tables, and dresser tops.  This is a big no.  When counters are clear, it is that much easier to clean house because it’s a lot faster to wipe down counter tops when there’s fewer objects to remove.
      5. Keep up with cleaning a little bit everyday – Dust settles everyday.  Women…our hair collects noticeably on floors everyday.  If you tackle cleaning the floor and dusting a new room each day, your overall home will always be clean.

simple-rules-clean-home

If you can master each of these rules, you WILL have a clean home that you can handle…toddlers and all.  In fact, my toddler has picked up my habit of putting things back where they belong.  Continue to keep these rules in mind as we focus on each room individually in the upcoming posts for this series.  Please join our newsletter to keep up with this series and follow me on social media.

Leave a comment and let me know which is your biggest challenge when it comes down to cleaning your house!


Ready to Tackle Spring Cleaning Your Rooms?

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Family | Personal

10 Toddler Rules You Must Follow

By on April 4, 2017
toddler-rules

Toddlers are known to have particular preferences and my daughter is no exception. Here are the absolute toddler rules my toddler demands of me and herself.  If you ever meet me and my daughter, you’ll want to follow these rules, too.

10 Absolute Toddler Rules

  1. If mom’s head is laying down on a pillow, toddler must lay down in the opposite direction next to her (why, hello feet!).
  2. Water droplets on the skin is considered a mess. Scooping water out of a bowl onto the floor is not.
  3. All doors must be opened and closed by toddler. Same goes for light switches.
  4. See that car seat high up in the SUV?  Toddler will not sit in it unless toddler has climbed into the car seat by herself.
  5. Toddler must take a bite out of each and every cracker (or fruit) on her plate before picking one to finish off.  This includes each Veggie Pizza Bites.
  6. If a blank piece of paper is placed on her drawing table, she must go and doodle on it.  That takes top priority.
  7. If toddler is in the hallway, stairwell, or a room with an echo…toddler will emit a loud “ah, ah, ah” and revel in the acoustics.
  8. Anytime someone in her vicinity farts, burps, or yawns, she will announce it to the entire world whoever will listen.  It’s up to you to confirm or deny it.
  9. Everyday is a good day to sing and dance.  These must include Wheels on the Bus, Five Little Monkeys, and the Itsy Bitsy Spider.
  10. All music must be played handsome men with a violin and piano. Ok, handsome men is my opinion, not my toddler’s, but she loves Henry along with me. How can you not like a talented musician who plays both the violin and piano?

 

Source: monmon2013S01

If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe to our newsletter and follow us on social media!  Also, check out my Black Bean Paste Noodle recipe and why the term second infertility scared me.

What absolute toddler rules does your toddler abide by?  Please comment and share!

toddler-rules

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Eats

Veggie Pizza Bites

By on March 31, 2017
veggie-pizza-bite-title

It’s been awhile since I wrote a recipe that’s toddler-friendly.  If you are interested in the last two toddler-friendly recipes I wrote, check out Carrot Yam Bake and Peanut Chocolate Pear.  Today’s recipe is a quick and easy snack that involves a variety of veggies.  Veggie Pizza Bites uses zucchini, mushrooms, and red pepper…all which my daughter love in soup.  Now, I’ll be honest…while this is toddler-friendly, it’s not a guarantee that your toddler will like it right away.  I mean, it is all vegetables and they aren’t fully cooked so that everything is soft and tender.  If your young child is past the texture-hating phase, this will probably go better for you.

veggie-pizza-bite-bunny

veggie-pizza-bite

Veggie Pizza Bites Recipe

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 zucchini
  • red pepper hummus
  • a handful of button mushrooms
  • 1 red pepper
  1. Slice the zucchini in 0.25 inch thick circles.  Dice the red pepper and mushrooms into small pieces.  Smaller the better, since they will be your toppings.
  2. Toss everything into a boiling pot of water and cook for 2 to 3 minutes.  This is to help make the vegetables tender for the toddler.  If this is for older children and adults, you can skip this step.  Drain the vegetables.
  3. Place zucchini circles on a plate.  Spread a small amount of red pepper hummus onto each circle.  Red pepper hummus best imitates tomato sauce in real pizzas, but if color doesn’t matter to you, feel free to use any other flavor of hummus.
  4. Sprinkle the diced veggies on top.  Let cool and enjoy.  You can use any other veggie toppings on your veggie pizza bites, too.  Red pepper and mushrooms just happen to be the ones my daughter loves.

veggie-pizza-bite-title

What vegetable toppings do you love on your veggie pizza bite?  Leave a comment and let me know!

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Eats

Korean Cooking: Jjajangmyeon at Home

By on
Jjajangmyeon-food

Last week was such a good week that I ended up spending the first half of this week studying various resources online and trying to solve a personal problem.  My last recipe was a spicy Korean dish that many of you were interested in trying, but might have found a bit too adventurous for your tastes.  No hard feelings!  Through the discussion of that recipe, I met Jhuls from The Not So Creative Cook (here’s her recipe for spicy Korean beef stir fry).  She mentioned how she would like to try Jjajangmyeon, a popular Korean dish, so I have decided to write a recipe for Paula’s Homemade Jjajangmyeon.

What is Jjajangmyeon?

Jjajangmyeon is a popular dish served in Korean owned Chinese restaurants.  It is a noodle dish mixed with a special black bean sauce.  There are different styles to this dish, but basically you get to add whatever veggies and meat you like.  Are you ready for another foodie adventure?

jjajangmyeon-before-mixing

Paula’s Homemade Jjajangmyeon Recipe

The thing about my home cooking is that I never measure any ingredients out.  I go by the look, feel, and taste of the food in progress to decide if I need to adjust anything.  I’m going to try and write a good recipe for you to follow along, but trust yourself to make the right judgement!

INGREDIENTS

  • Jar of 볶음 짜장 (bokkeum jjajang), which is fermented black bean paste
  • Some pork (or beef)
  • Some shrimp
  • Green onion
  • Onion
  • Potato
  • Carrot
  • Squash
  • Mushrooms
  • Olive oil
  • Starch powder
  • Kalguksu noodles 칼국수  (Asian flat noodles) or thin spaghetti noodles

The key ingredient for this recipe is the jar of fermented black bean paste.  Here is the one I used this time around, but there are plenty of brands to choose from.

jjajangmyeon-black-bean-paste

  1. Chop and dice the green onions, onion, potato, carrot, squash, shrimp, and pork into tiny pieces.  You can store the pieces in one large bowl, except for the green onions and pork.  Put the green onion into the empty sauce pot.
  2. Add olive oil.  I add just until it barely covers the bottom of the pot, but not too much.  You don’t want oily sauce.  Heat the pot on medium heat and fry the green onion pieces a bit.  Add pork and continue to fry until meat is cooked.
  3. Add the rest of the diced pieces into the pot.  Mix well so that the olive oil mixture somewhat coats most of the entire contents.
  4. Add 2 to 3 spoonfuls of the black bean paste and mix well for about a minute. You don’t want the mixture sitting for too long since it can burn.
  5. Add some water to the pot so that you can see the water level and let the pot come to a boil.  Be sure to stir occasionally. In a separate bowl, mix starch and water in a 1:1 ratio.  Add the starch mixture to the pot to thicken the sauce. If you want thicker sauce, slowly stir in some more of the starch mix.  Add water to thin it out. Adjust as necessary.
  6. Add sauce to a bowl of cooked noodles, mix and eat. You can also mix with rice. I prefer using kalguksu noodles (boil for 4 minutes), but you can use thin spaghetti noodles (boil for 12 minutes) as well.
  7. Garnish with thin cucumber slices and enjoy.

bowl-mixed-jjajangmyeon

There you have it, a bowl of Jjajangmyeon. The tricky part is getting the consistency of the sauce right. I hope you enjoy!

Fun Fact: Korea has a made-up holiday just for eating Jjajangmyeon.  It’s called Black Day and it falls on April 14.  This day is for all the single people who couldn’t celebrate Valentine’s Day or White Day (March 14).

Jjajangmyeon-food

Will you try Jjajangmyeon on Black Day, regardless of your marital status?  Let me know if you’d like to see another Korean recipe and don’t forget to subscribe to the newsletter.

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Family | Personal

I Googled Second Infertility and It Scared Me

By on March 29, 2017
mommy-hand-baby-foot

After celebrating the joys of last week, this post is on a more serious note.  I have one beautiful daughter and I’ve always wanted to have three kids, max.  My daughter is already two years old and I haven’t gotten pregnant since having her.  As the months go by and I continue to have my periods, I started to wonder if something is wrong…with me?  My husband?  I started searching Google for answers and came across this term: second infertility.  Do I have second infertility?  I had never heard of this term before.

Disclaimer:  I am no expert on second infertility and cannot help you with any medical questions.  Please direct those to your appropriate care provider.

What is second infertility?

I’m a little frantic now about getting pregnant because I do not want my children to be far apart in age.  By doing the math, even if I get pregnant right this second, my children will be three years apart.  That’s borderline ideal max age difference to me.

Second infertility is when a couple is unable to get pregnant after having had a first pregnancy before.  Sounds unreal, right?  My daughter was conceived really quickly after our marriage, so my husband and I didn’t expect getting pregnant again would be difficult.  I’ve been using a period tracker app to see what days I’m supposed to be most fertile and used that data to try and make that baby magic happen.

Five months and still nothing.  I’m starting to really worry something is up.  I’m still in my 20’s, the last legs of it, but still.  Google’s search results and my monthly results have scared me.

Thankfully, I came across this informative post on Mom.me with information from a physician assistant in an OB practice.  The author writes about six points, but I just want to highlight two that helped me.

50% get pregnant within six months and 85% make a baby within one year

Human fertility is inefficient

First off, a woman usually has only one egg available for fertilization every one month.  Finding the right timing for getting pregnant isn’t easy.  In fact, it’s a 1 in 4 chance of getting pregnant if you are a young healthy couple with no other issues AND you get the timing right.  So, if a group of young healthy couples consistently try to get pregnant with these stats, only 50% get pregnant within six months and 85% make a baby within one year.  I’m only five months in, everyone.

You’re Probably Not Infertile

Second, if you are in the 15% of young healthy couples that didn’t get pregnant within a year, you can’t write yourself off as infertile.  Apparently, there are very few medical diagnoses that actually cause infertility.  It is more likely there are other barriers that are making it difficult for you to get pregnant.    Again, you’d want to consult your care provider in this case.  Is that reassuring news?

Either way, I want that second baby now!  I mean, I have so many great books to read future baby.  So, I’m going to make use of some handy gadgets like an at-home ovulation testing kit and see if we can make that timing right.  Wish me luck, guys!

Have you had a long waiting period before getting pregnant with your next child?

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Family | Life | Personal

This Week We Celebrate

By on March 25, 2017

Thinking back on this week, I realize there is much to celebrate.

  1. I managed to put up three posts this week, including a recipe for some spicy Korean food.  I decided to share another blog tip on writing a perfect post.  My daughter’s favorite books from last year also finally made an appearance.  I’ve been thinking about that last one for many months now, so let’s celebrate its completion!
  2. Her Life Is Love turned one month old this week.  I’ve always thought about returning back to blogging for seven years before I finally just went for it.  During this past month, I’ve been learning a lot and it has been so much fun!  I love having this space to socialize with other parent bloggers and am still hoping this will lead to some wonderful friendships.
  3. My husband got laid off two weeks ago due to a back injury, but he found a new and better job this week.  My biggest reason to celebrate this week!  He’ll start working tomorrow by going away on a business trip.  It feels rather sudden, but he is looking forward to it.  I think staying home, recuperating, and being out of work was pretty tough on him even though I cooked one of his favorites.
  4. It’s also my husband’s birthday this week.  We will celebrate with a small birthday party at home today.  My daughter and I plan on baking him a lemon cake.  Hopefully, it’ll turn out well.  She’s only two.  Maybe I will have her make a birthday card, too.  What do you think?

week-celebrate

How was your week?  Do you have anything to celebrate?  Share with us!

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Family | Reviews

8 Must Read Books for the One Year Old

By on March 24, 2017
must-read-books-one-year-old

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I’m a bookworm.  I love curling up to a good book, so the advice I got that a good mom reads to their baby a lot worked out well.  Reading to my daughter got a lot more exciting after she turned one year old.  By then, she was more aware of the world around her and seemed to really absorb the content in the books.  Around 18 months, we got to participate in the Summer Reading Program at our local library.  Through the experience, we discovered eight books for a one year old that we highly recommend.  If you would like more daughter-inspired recommendations, check out my daughter’s favorites for bath time!

Jazz Baby

Babies and young toddlers listen to the rhythm and tonal changes in order to learn a language.  Jazz Baby is a book that automatically makes you sing when reading it out loud.  It’s pretty catchy and after reading it together numerous times, we practically memorized the whole book.  I liked how the extended family and neighbors take part in this story, so my daughter was exposed to many new key words.

Jazz Baby by Lisa Wheeler

Don’t Push the Button!

This is such a cute story.  You have this adorable purple character who speaks to you, the reader, and much like any young child, has little self-restraint.  The whole book goes through his struggle to follow one simple rule.  Don’t push the button.  Toddlers have a knack for wanting to do things you tell them not to do.  This is one such case, but we really enjoyed pushing the button anyway.  This book allows for a fun interaction with the book and I like it because making reading fun at an early age is key to keeping kids interested in reading for a lifetime.

Don’t Push the Button by Bill Cotter

Dear Zoo

A classic book that’s already been around for 30 years, so many of you may already be familiar with it.  Plus, it’s a flap book and young toddlers love lifting flaps in a book.  We loved guessing what animal is behind each flap and then making the animal sounds, too.  This book taught my daughter the words for lion, elephant, and giraffe.  We especially loved the ending because it includes the best animal of all!

Dear Zoo by Rod Campbell

Knuffle Bunny

I personally liked how this book takes actual photographs and places these illustrated characters inside.  My daughter has a stuffed bunny, too, so we could sort of relate with the characters in the story.  I might have liked this book more than my daughter because the author, Mo Willems, accurately captures what a toddler does when she gets frustrated from not being understood.  Hint: They go floppy.

Knuffle Bunny by Mo Willems

Dinosaur’s Binkit

We enjoy a lot of Sandra Boynton books because of the adorable illustrations.  Here’s a lovely story about a dinosaur getting ready for bed, but apparently he’s missing his binkit.  It’s a quick and easy read, plus it’s a flap book.  The ideal bedtime story for when you want to make a quick exit.  What makes this book particularly great for young toddlers is that it includes textures.  On the cover, you can feel the fuzzy softness of the dinosaur’s binkit.

Dinosaur’s Binkit by Sandra Boynton

Where Is Pim?

We loved the illustrations and the story is quite simple.  In fact, you will want to talk about the illustrations and spot different things together to make a reading of this book worthwhile.  I liked to point out the dogs and what they encounter on their search for Pim.

Where Is Pim? by Lena and Olaf Landstrom

Hi!

My daughter learned the names of many different animals (wolf, polar bear, donkey, owl) and the different sounds they make.  It was so cute to read this book with her and hear her howl with the wolf and growl with the polar bear.  I remember this book fondly because it is the first book where my daughter actually started to repeat after me and voice the words for owl and bird.  I think because it is such a simple book where I only repeated the name of the animal and the sound they make, it was easy for my daughter to follow along.

Hi! by Ethan Long

Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb

This is another great rhyming, rhythmic book that is fun to read.  The monkey illustrations are endearing as they teach about hands, fingers, thumbs, and drums.  My daughter still loves this book, even though she is now two years old.  It is a #1 bestseller in children’s books on Amazon and right now, it’s on sale for $2.99!  I’m so glad our local librarian recommended this book to us.  I highly recommend this board book, too.

Hand, Hand, Fingers, Thumb by Al Perkins

must-read-books-one-year-old

These are all affordable books that a one year old will love.  If you need gift ideas for a first birthday, any one of these books are sure to be a hit.

Which book would you read to your one year old?

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