27 April 2016

Mommy|Daughter Bucket List

Maddy will be turning 5 in three months and every time I think about it, it's like a kick in my gut. Time truly does slip away from us so quickly and it seems like the older I get, the faster the clock starts ticking.

The time I have with my baby girl is precious. It's hard to imagine that in 13 short years, she'll be going out into the world as an adult - all on her own and without me around to constantly protect her. I think about what I was doing 13 years ago and to me, it seems just like yesterday so I know that now, these upcoming years will evaporate right in front of my eyes. It's important that I try to do the best I can at sharing, capturing and making the most of these short years I have with Maddy.

25 April 2016

Maddy Monday

When I found out I was pregnant, I knew with all my being that I was having a boy. When Michael and I would go to look at clothing, or bedding or anything baby, I would gravitate towards the boy items. We talked about boy names and I researched everything boy.

Oh boy was I wrong.

When the ultrasound tech told me I was having a girl, my head exploded. I just knew I was supposed to be having a boy, so much so that I asked her to check again. Sure enough, there was no dingle in my daughter’s anatomy. Our baby was indeed all girl and I was floored. My parents raised 3 girls – three. How either of them has any hair left on their heads to this day is beyond me and that’s all I could think of at the time – girls are drama. Girls are crazy chaotic. Girls will turn your life upside down.

22 April 2016


A sneak peek into a few of our Instagram squares as of late.

Spring Has Sprung.
The weather has finally decided to switch gears to spring here in PA so we’ve been able to enjoy a lot of great time outside. Having a kid who LOVES the outdoors is hell during the winter so now that warmer temps have made an appearance, we’re outside as much as possible. One of Maddy’s favorite things to do is blow bubbles. It’s such a simple pleasure, blowing bubbles. Kids love bubbles. I wish anything in the world made me as happy as Maddy is when she’s outside playing in the suds.

20 April 2016

All Moms Are Working Moms

All Moms Are Working Moms #workingmoms #parenting #motherhood

Dear Working Moms:

Today, you’re all on my mind. Whether your office is in a professional building or in the comfort of your own home, I’ve been thinking about you. Whether you’re a married mom or a single mom, whether you dress up in a suit to go into the city or slide on your yoga pants in the morning to take care of your kids for the day, it’s important to say…

We’re all working moms.

One does not negate the other. One does not outshine the other. One is not even remotely better than the other. Regardless of whether or not you work outside or inside of the home, if you’re a mom…

You’re a working mom.

19 April 2016

I'm Not Asleep...But That Doesn't Mean I'm Awake!

Last week, I had a conversation with a girlfriend of mine regarding kiddos and sleep. I mentioned that even though Maddy is getting ready to turn 5 in July, she still doesn't sleep through the night. I would say that 99.9% of the time, she will wake up during the night anywhere between one to four times. Maybe once a month she'll sleep an entire night without waking up {that's a huge maybe} but the norm is to wake up each night and usually multiple times.

The odd thing about this whole situation is that Maddy started sleeping through the night when she was two months old. It was such a huge blessing at the time because I was just returning to work from maternity leave and was really stressing about how I was going to be a solid, high-producing working mom with a new baby who may or may not sleep. Fortunately for me, she slept and slept really, really well. We'd put her down for bed at 8 p.m. and she would stay asleep until around 7 a.m. the next morning. For around nine months, Michael and I enjoyed blissful, uninterrupted rest and then one day without warning, it stopped...and it has been a horrific series of events since. 

09 April 2016

Week In Review

Happy weekend, friends!

If you missed any posts from this week well, you’re in luck! I’ve collected them all right here in one place for your reading pleasure. 

07 April 2016

Three Thoughts on Thursday

Hi. My name is Courtney, and I’m a cruise addict. Last month, Michael and I went on a seven day Caribbean cruise through Half Moon Cay, Bahamas, Cozumel, Grand Cayman and Key West. It was GLORIOUS. This was my first cruise experience and to say I loved it would be a huge understatement.

Confession: On the last night during dinner, the ship’s staff did this “bon voyage song/dance” kind of thing and guess who was crying like a little baby because she didn’t want to leave the ship?

06 April 2016

Mommy Confessions

ONE. Four and a half years after my C-Section and I still have this stupid little “flap” of skin that just hangs over my belly. Most days, my scar reminds me of being the bad ass mother that I am; strong, capable and willing to do what it takes to be a good mother, but other days? Other days, it makes me feel disgusting and I wonder how anyone could ever want to see me naked.

TWO. When Maddy isn’t looking, I bag up for donation or throw away old toys, stuffed animals and randomly collected junk. Very rarely do I ever feel bad about this.

THREE. When I found out my ex-husband was cheating on me, I used his toothbrush to clean the toilets.

FOUR. I read an article online today that said you shouldn’t wash your vagina with soap? Tha fuck? How is it supposed to get clean? Asking for a friend…

FIVE. On our list of DVR shows for Maddy, I purposefully try to get her to watch Peppa Pig. Not because I think its good programming for her (which it is) but because I totally LOVE it.

SIX. I haven’t actually mopped our kitchen floor in about two months. Only spot cleaned. Sometimes life happens and I don’t feel the least bit disgusted or bad about it!

SEVEN. Teaching Maddy to be kind and forgiving is hard sometimes, especially when other kids are just little shits and I want to tell her to drop kick them and keep it moving.

EIGHT. We still have our Christmas tree up and I LOVE it. I give zero fucks what other people think.

Now it’s your turn! What do you have to confess this week?

04 April 2016

But You're Laughing! You Can't Have Depression!

When I heard about Robin William’s passing in 2014, I wasn’t surprised and shocked to hear the news as most people were. Instead, what I felt was an immense amount of sadness and a deep connection to a man I had never met and all I could do was shake my head and say a prayer. My heart immediately knew why he had left this world because my life, like so many millions of other peoples’ lives, have dealt with, and been affected by, depression and mental health issues. 

But You're Laughing! You Can't Have Depression! #depressionawareness #depression #parenting

I am a mother who struggles with depression. Most days are good. I am one of the very few, fortunate souls who have found a medication that works to fill in the gaps in my mind that otherwise without meds, would leave it imbalanced and incomplete. And while my medication works its magic quietly behind the scenes to keep my brain from turning on me, I know all too well that it will never be a cure for my illness and that at any time, my meds could stop working. It is always a game of Russian roulette. Some days are good, some days are bad. Step up to the plate and spin the wheel. 

When the news of Robin William’s death broke, millions of people made comments such as:

“I had no idea he was struggling.”
“But he was a comedian. He was always laughing. He made me laugh.”
“I never knew he struggled with depression and bi-polar disorder.”

And that’s usually how it goes but it’s also the point – depression doesn’t discriminate. Depression is real. It is a horrible, unforgiving disease that is relentless in consuming its victims. People who suffer from depression can't help their disease any more than they can help the color of their eyes. It is a medical, biological imbalance. And while most who suffer still cling to hope of a cure - or just one peaceful day - a large majority suffer in silence daily with no peace and no refuge. There is no hiding from depression and bi-polar illness. Instead, there is only masking. Mask the pain. Mask the struggle. Mask the voices. 

I know this game well. I’ve played it many, many times in my life. 

“Smile. Don’t let them see you hurt.”
“Laugh, make jokes, and be “normal” so they don’t see the tears.”
“Talk and think positively to shut out all the self-hate and self-loathing.”

It makes sense that most people would have never known Robin was sick and how he had the amazing ability to naturally fit the roles of drastic, struggling human emotion given to him with such ease. It always made sense to me. He was good at playing the roles of struggle and covering his illness because he was struggling

And I have too. 

I am a healthy woman. I have a beautiful daughter and loving partner. I have a great job, wonderful friends, and an amazing and supportive family…a great life yet – some days – this isn’t enough to fight off the demons of depression and the voices that tell me “You are not good enough. Nothing will ever be good enough.” My brain has tried to convince me many, many times that the world would be better off without me. That I’m no good. That I’ll never do anything right or amount to anything so why bother. My own brain – attacking me. 

With depression and bi-polar disease, your brain will lie to you, it will turn on you. Of course it’s all lies, but in a depressive episode, you can’t and won’t distinguish between reality and the lies. It is a gut-wrenching battle that never ends. 

If you take nothing else away from this post today, please let it be this: Those who suffer from any form of mental illness, whether it be big or small, are not flawed, crazy individuals. No one would ever choose to suffer from mental illness because that’s what it is – an illness. Just as you would have empathy, sympathy, and understanding for anyone going through another kind of illness (cancer, contagious disease, etc.), those suffering from mental illness deserve nothing less than the same compassion. If you are not familiar with mental illness in any of its capacities, I urge you to check out the National Alliance on Mental Illness website and get yourself educated on the facts of mental illness and do what you can to help those suffering find a way home. A way to peace.

When I heard the news of Robin William’s passing, all I could do was cry and understand because I have been there too. I know how close I’ve been to feeling his struggle and how his path could very well have been mine.