Surviving Homeschool…the First Week

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog today. I really appreciate your support and believe me, I am really grateful you took the time out to read this blog. Some of the products displayed on this blog have been gifted to me and this post may contain affiliate. If you choose to buy from these links you won’t pay extra, you fact you may even save money. I’ll get a commission which will keep this blog going. However, all opinions expressed are completely my own.

Like most families, it was the beginning of school in my house. Unlike most families, I started school with my three year old daughter. I knew that I wanted to homeschool from the moment she was born. Throughout the years, I saw my little one become a sponge when it came to retaining information. By the time, she was a year old she knew that if she yelled at me she had my attention. By 18 months old, she could say her body parts. By, 2 she was potty trained and knew her alphabets, could make the phonetic sounds they produced and could count to ten and hold a conversation. Everywhere, we went people were amazed at how much she knew and could express. I wish I could take all the credit but between Cocomelon, Super Simple Songs, The Backyardigans, Alphablocks and pretty much whatever I could find on YouTube to keep her occupied when I needed a moment, she turned out all right. So I thought, why not further feed her thirst for knowledge and start homeschooling her now?

https://www.instagram.com/reel/CEt22j6nXDL/?igshid=1nnlbjzeklclb

I wish I had known what I was in for.

As you know, it’s only been a week but I just want to say for the record PAY THESE TEACHERS WHAT THEY ARE WORTH!!!

We started our sessions, the Tuesday morning after Labour Day, I wanted us to have a full “school in session” kind of vibe. In all honesty, all she saw was a colourful notebook, some crayons and an overly excited mom…it was probably the coffee mixed with the nerves. I thought it’d be best to start with some alphabet tracing. Since she knew her alphabets it wouldn’t be hard to make that connection, right? My daughter is a genius who is capable of mastering all information within a matter of minutes, right?Wrong!

I don’t know what I was thinking placing such high expectations on my three year old daughter. I will spare you the nightmare. Let’s just say, my once energetic child who would rather do anything than take a nap was actually looking forward to taking a nap. She hated it every minute of alphabet tracing. I was getting frustrated because she wasn’t doing it “right” and she was frustrated and began to shut down. Then I felt like a jerk but I just wanted her to get it right…it was a nightmare. Looking back on it, I really screwed up her first two days and I wasn’t feeling confident in my ability to teach my daughter anything at this point. I just felt like a bum. In a few minutes, I sucked the excitement out of learning.

So I had a teacher’s meeting with myself. The first one of the year. I decided to set some rules that I had to abide by. I knew that if I could do that, we both would be better off. The goal isn’t just to get her to learn but to inspire to enjoy learning. What’s the point of learning at home if it sucks? I knew that I had to learn the way to teach her. She doesn’t learn like me, so to expect that out of a toddler who loves to have fun is ridiculous. I mean we only look alike, aside from that we are two very completely different beings. I wrote down the rules and here they are.

  1. Keep each lesson at a maximum of 10 minutes
  2. Once she’s done, move on. Come back to it, tomorrow
  3. Learn her “learning style”. Turns out, she loves to colour! Use that.
  4. Positive affirmation is key
  5. Let her lead.

I’ve been doing this ever since. Would you believe that we’ve been able to get through every lesson? She’s been learning how to write the alphabets a lot more quickly as well as the numbers. We’ve been able to even do some math problems, which is her favourite subject. I think it’s mostly because she gets to colour.

We’ve even added some flash cards into the mix to help her get more familiar with sight words. She absolutely loves the flash cards. Everyday we start our lesson with the flash cards. I usually do a game of sorts with her and the best part of it is, I see the spark return as she is soaking all this information.

On most nights, it’s not uncommon to see my three year old show her father what new word she’s learned, or what sight word she can now write on her own. She loves hearing his praises of her smart she is. At times, she will even pretend that she’s a teacher. It’s really an awesome feeling to know that I can impact my daughter in a way that will ultimately set her for success.

So to all the parents out there, I’m super proud of you for the job you are doing. This year has been challenging and whether you are sending your kids back to school or keeping them at home, I just want you to know that I see you and that I appreciate you doing what’s best for your family. We’re all in this together!

Five Ways To Put Your Best Face Forward

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog. Just to let you know I am not a dermatologist, esthetician nor am I, a skin care specialist. I am just a mom of who had problematic skin for the majority of my life and has now figured out a way to keep my skin looking pretty.

FYI, some of the products featured on this post have been gifted to me. However, all opinions are strictly my own.

Ever since, I entered puberty my face and I have been at war. Between the targeted acne commercial and the ill council of my elders I entered a battle I had no way of winning. I had oily skin, acne and nobody knew what to do to help. As I got older, I took control of my health and began to find inexpensive ways to restore on my chaotic skin.

Skin Care Regimen

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First I needed a skin care regimen that actually would benefit my skin and my skin alone. Those I was living with, as a teenager, did not have the expertise to diagnose my skin. Also, it helps to be able to afford what goes on your skin.

Despite my oily skin, soaps were too harsh and the body creams were too heavy on my already battered skin. That’s when I started experimenting with different skin care lines until I found the right regimen for me.

Exercise

It goes without saying that nothing beats having your body move, getting the blood pumping and the endorphins flowing. Did you know that exercise keeps your skin looking amazing? By exercising you are forcing your blood to carry oxygen  and nutrients everywhere in your body including your skin. According to webmd.com, exercise also is a great way to release stress. Stress has been known to cause unnecessary visitors to appear on the skin. Those unnecessary visitors are acne. 

So if you needed another reason to start exercising, how about clear skin?

Healthy Eating

We’ve all heard about how junk food can negatively impact the health of our skin, turns out it’s not an old wive’s tales. There’s actually truth to it.

This is an affiliate link. If you choose to purchase these bars you won’t regret it. Use the promo code Sandy25 and save 25% on your purchase.

Healthline states that adding foods that are high in fatty acids you can help your body create collage which decreases the appearance of wrinkles. So go ahead and order that avocado on toast, your skin will thank you.

Vitamins

If you’re like me, you probably find yourself ordering out a lot, or snacking on chips and cookies more than you’d like to. So healthy eating may not be at the top of your list. To remedy that, I personally supplement with vitamins.

Lately, I’ve been indulging myself to the Neocell Beauty Bursts. They taste so good and they provide my body with collagen. A protein that is essential in the maintenance of my hair, skin and nails. Believe me, after birthing two babies I need all the help I can get.

Sleep

Beauty sleep is an actual thing and we all need it. According to Healthline, lack of sleep causes an increase in cortisol. If cortisol sounds familiar it’s because it’s been in so many fat reducing supplement commercials, which I’m sure you’ve seen. Cortisol is a stress hormone and too much of it can cause acne. It can also break down the collagen and hyaluronic acid in the skin. Collagen and hyaluronic acid are our skin friends and without them, our skin loses it’s pretty.

Final Thoughts

Maybe your skin care remedy is just a tweak in your daily routine or your lifestyle. Beauty is deeper than skin, but that doesn’t mean you should disregard. Put your best face forward, you totally deserve it.

What’s been the one thing you’ve done that has changed your skin for the better?

The Perfect Wash and Go Tutorial

www.youtube.com/watch

It came highly requested and as promised here it is!

For many of us getting curls that are really defined with any frizz is a 12 step process with much prayer. But I’ve figured out a way to get your curls seen front and centre, everytime. Unless it rains then you’re on your own.

All you need is three ingredients.

The products used are:

1. @earthtonesnatural Curl Quench Hair Butter https://www.earthtonesnaturals.com/pr…

2. @earthtonesnatural Curl Define Max Curl Enhancing Gelly https://www.earthtonesnaturals.com/pr…

3. TGIN Honey Whip Hydrating Mousse https://malachite-elephant.com/produc…

In less than half an hour you’ll be rocking your wash and go like a pro.

What I love about this hairstyle is that it’s super versatile, easy to maintain and can last up to five days. I’ve worked out, showered and slept without much disruption with this hairstyle. I recommend anyone who’s on the verge of banning wash and go from their hair to try this method first. If you do let me how it goes!

Check Out My Wig Collection

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog. Your support is greatly appreciated and believe me I do not take it for granted. This post does contain product that I’ve received for free but it does not change how I feel about them. All opinions expressed are simply and honestly my own. 

Also, it’s super easy to wear. Unless you’re dealing with those new high definition lace front that require a full five step process, all you have to do is cut the lace, put it on and adjust. You should always wear a hair net to avoid unnecessary friction between the wig and your hair. Aside from that it’s easy peasy. 

Here are some easy ways to test a new hairstyle: WIGS!

Have you ever worn a wig? What’s your experience been like?

Colorism Almost Ruined Me

I remember a lot of the comments that were made about my physical appearance when I was young. Not many of them were good. In fact, I don’t remember much at all that were good.

I was told I was smart. That I was well spoken. That I was mature for my age. That I looked older than I was. I was told that I was bright and insightful. Talkative and inquisitive. I had potential to be a doctor or a lawyer. That I read beyond my grade level.

I was never called cute or beautiful. I was tall, lanky and awkward. Most of my clothes were baggy on me because naturally children’s clothes aren’t customizable. The sleeves were often too short and the pant leg too short. I had no sense of style and no matter how hard I tried I never could replicate what I saw on tv.

Between my sister and I, I was the “darker” one, so she was cuter than me by default. Colourism is a cancer that silently kills the confidence of black girls worldwide. Even in the home. No matter how hard my mom tried to shield me from it, every time my sister and I stepped into a room where we were introduced we both knew from the looks what was coming. Children aren’t stupid. Even as children, we were silent but not stupid. We knew what they thought and some made it very clear they had a preference.

I never fit in. I was too eloquent and well spoken to be black. That reality was very real when I lived in Florida. In fact, I was warned that I would make myself a target if I didn’t change my way of speech. It sucks. Imagine learning a language so well and still be told it’s not good enough because it’s too perfect.

If it’s not my weight, it’s my height. If it’s not my speech, it’s my thought. Then fast forward a few decades and I’m projecting my own insecurities on my children. I’m denying myself the ability to heal by putting on a mask.

I have a fear of being slim. I’m afraid that those words of my childhood will return to haunt like the ghost of Christmas past. I’m afraid that if I go below a certain weight class I will no longer be seen as a woman but as a less than deserving citizen.

I have a fear of not being black enough. I’m afraid that if people see the me that my family sees, I will be seen as an “Oreo”. I’m afraid of being addressed as an outsider and treated like I don’t belong.

I have perfected my accent, I have become cool enough, loud enough and “black” enough to be seen as a black woman. What will happen if the world finds out that I really don’t like Rap the way they thought I did? What if they know that I’d rather listen to Mozart over T-Pain? What if I’m labeled an imposter?

The nightmare is what if I begin to project my own insecurities on my girls. The things I fear, they too, begin to fear? Will silently contemplate and weigh every word of flattery they hear? Can I be trusted to teach them they are worth far more than the treasures of this world while I secretly and silently battle my own past?

I was a child in need of affirmation. I needed to believe I was beautiful. Though the past is over, I have a duty to heal from that trauma. That chapter must close. If I could go back in time, I would tell my younger self how beautiful she was. She’s beauty and brains which make her a rare treasure. I would tell her that her weight and height were perfect. She doesn’t need to over eat to gain weight. She doesn’t to be lighter or darker. She’s perfect just the way she is.

FYI: I’ve got a vlog so if you want to check that out click here

Talk to me in the comments!

Vichy Normaderm Phytosolution Giveaway

Hi there! Thank you so much for being here. Your support as always means the world to me. In this vlog, I have collaborated with Vichy to share with you a really simple and effective three step skin care routine that is gentle on the skin and super effective in getting rid of acne, even if your skin is sensitive like mine. GIVEAWAY ALERT: This video does include a giveaway alert so stay tuned to the end to see how you can get your hands on these amazing products. For the rules of giveaway visit me on Instagram http://www.instagram.com/iamsandyesprit Disclaimer: This vlog is sponsored by Vichy but all opinions expressed in this videos are my own. Don’t forget to SUBSCRIBE to the channel, LIKE this video and SHARE with your friends and family. Filming Tools: iPhone 8 8” ring light Editing app: iMovie app Check what else I’m doing online and click this link to stay up to date http://www.iamsandyesprit.com/linkinbio #vichy #skincare #review #giveaway #ad

I’m Becoming The Woman I Really Like

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog today. I really appreciate your support and believe me, I am really grateful you took the time out to read this blog. Some of the products displayed on this blog have been gifted to me and this post may contain affiliate. If you choose to buy from these links you won’t pay extra, you fact you may even save money. I’ll get a commission which will keep this blog going. However, all opinions expressed are completely my own.

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege of being a guest blogger for Robyn Liechti. I shared a piece of my journey and I really hope you enjoy it but most importantly that it pushes you to reach for better. Click the link below.

https://robynliechti.com/blogs/the-5-ws-of-journaling/im-becoming-the-woman-that-i-really-like-sandy-esprit

If you want to continue on your self care and are in need of a journal (I highly recommend) use promo code Sandy2020! Save 10%.

To support buy some merchandise from Grenade and use promo code Sandy25 to save some money.

Four Step Makeup Routine

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog today. I really appreciate your support and believe me, I am really grateful you took the time out to read this blog. Some of the products displayed on this blog have been gifted to me and this post may contain affiliate. If you choose to buy from these links you won’t pay extra, you fact you may even save money. I’ll get a commission which will keep this blog going. However, all opinions expressed are completely my own.

This week I was guest blogger. Click the link below to see what I wrote!

https://www.audreysaysfashion.com/fortheculture/simpleandquick4stepmakeuproutine

To support buy some merchandise from Grenade and use promo code Sandy25 to save some money.

Summer Skin Care Favourites

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog today. I really appreciate your support and believe me, I am really grateful you took the time out to read this blog. Some of the products displayed on this blog have been gifted to me and this post may contain affiliate. If you choose to buy from these links you won’t pay extra, you fact you may even save money. I’ll get a commission which will keep this blog going. However, all opinions expressed are completely my own.

I’ve been able to try a few skin care brands over the summer and I’ve been able to have some that worked out well for me and some that were not so great. Now of course, I will be highlighting all of the products that I really loved. The beauty of it all is that a lot of those products can be used all year long. Of course, as always, the best way to know what works best for your skin to listen to it.

shared246Sunscreen is the holy grail of all skin care. Why? Because it keeps your skin from burning. As a Black girl, finding a sun protection that kept me looking like me and not like a zombie extra from The Walking Dead, proved to be harder than I thought possible. Eventually I stumbled upon the Neutrogena Hydroboost SPF 30 and bought it on a whim. Am I glad I took that chance. This sunscreen has hyaluronic acid which is awesome for skin hydration. It feels great on the skin and it doesn’t have that white cast which would look make me look ashy.

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I’ve finally started using serums because …well, why not? My skin was desperately in need of one, to be honest. I noticed that my skin was starting to look dull and unless I had on some makeup on. I was gifted this serum and had little hope for it, but this Vitamin C Radiance Serum is bringing life and joy back into my skin. It brightens my face and I’m here for all the natural glow. Honest Beauty, has done amazing with this serum. img_4826

My other favourite serum is the Vichy Mineral 89 serum is nothing short of amazing. It provides the hydration that I didn’t even know my skin needed. Y’all my skin was thirsty but ever since I’ve started implementing this serum into my skin care routine, I’ve seen major improvement on the look and appearance of my face. It’s amazing how easy it is to fix thirsty when it receives the right amount of hydration. img_4836

I suffer from chronic acne and as a woman who constantly uses acne fighting cleansers and moisturizers can be quite harsh on the skin. This is why I love BMasked Dandelion Salve. This salve is great for dry extremely dry and for the real sensitive areas of the skin without irritating it and/or causing more acne. The under-eye and the high points of my cheekbone is where I mostly feel the tingle when my skin is irritated by my cleanser and/or moisturizer. The dandelion salve immediately soothes my skin so I can just move on with my day.

Last but img_4834not least the Honest Beauty Facial Oil. I was so afraid of using a facial oil. I mean I have acne visiting me every time it gets and here I am experimenting with a facial oil. Not exactly something I would naturally go towards. But as you can see it’s on the list. This facial oil smells amazing. Two drops takes care of the whole face. But the most amazing part of this is that it doesn’t leave my face shiny and it doesn’t cause breakouts. Talk about a win-win. I love this facial oil. I think everyone should have one.

 

This is my list for now. I hope you enjoyed it. If you tried any of these, let me know what you think.

Lay, Slay and Keep Your Edges

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog. I really appreciate your support and as always all opinions expressed are my own. All items shown in this blog were bought by me, so hopefully that will ease your mind as to the validity of my thoughts. 

So let’s get it!

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My Edges Are Back!

My hair line left me when I gave birth to my daughter. I’m not going to lie, I was very upset about this. During the pregnancy my hair was thriving, then I gave birth and my edges just up and left. But eventually they came back and now I get to use lay my edges. 

 

 

What You Need

Water (optional)

Got2b styling gel

Toothbrush

Hair scarf

Instructions

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  1. Separate a thin section (very thin) of the front of your hair away from the rest of your hair. 
  2. (this step is optional) Spray the thin part of your hair with water. 
  3. Squeeze a pea-sized amount of gel into your finger. You want to start small and build up. Using too much will create a tacky mess and you don’t want that. Your skin deserve better (thanks for coming to my Ted talk)!
  4. Apply the gel on a section of your hair. 
  5. Brush the hair in a semi circle towards the rest of the hair. You can use your finger to help manipulate the hair. 
  6. Once all the sectioned edges have been laid down, use a scarf to keep the hair down until the gel dries
  7. Once the gel is dry, gently remove the scarf. 

Edges Laid

Just like that you’ve got your edges laid and you’re ready to slay. Let me know how it worked out for you.

Was there a step I missed? Let me know in the comments. 

1 Scarf, 3 Ways

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog. I appreciate you being here. It means a lot to me. If you’ve been following my blog you know that all opinions expressed are completely my own. This post is not sponsored and all I want to do is share my favourite head scarf style.

So let’s get into it. 

Why Head scarf?

My love for head scarf started when I was in high school. I couldn’t wear a hat in school because it was against dress code, however head scarves were not. Like most girls, I don’t always want to do my hair. Some days I was running late other days I just couldn’t bother.  Either way, you can’t have a bad hair with a head scarf. 

These are my favourite looks and on any given day you can find me rocking one of those looks. Usually when I’m going to church, I’ll wear a scarf like this. It’s not easy getting two little girls ready and myself and I’ll often run out of time. So instead of doing my hair, I slick my edges back and wrap my hair. 

Let me show how you can achieve these effortless looks with a scarf. 

Low Bun

image_d113d395-783d-4edf-b138-fef3e59efb1a.shared1191. Place the top part of your head in the middle of the scarf

2. Bring the ends to the back of your head and use the ends of the scarf to create a two strand twist

3. Once your two strand twist is complete, keep twisting it on itself until it folds on itself

4. Manipulate the twist into a circle until it becomes a bun

5. Tuck in the ends within the bun

6. Adjust the front of the scarf accordingly. You may need to push it back or pull it forward. 

Et Voila! 

Now you have three quick easy way to be in and out the door within five minutes without breaking a sweat. This look can be dressed up or dressed down. Remember you can’t have a bad hair day with a stylish headscarf. 

Which look is your favourite?

Easy DIY Fuschia Lip Colour

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking my blog. Your support is appreciated and I’m so glad you’re here. So many times I’m just in my bathroom experimenting with make up and I love it. I don’t always get the chance to do it because of my precious daughters’ need my attention but when I get the chance, I turn up and play with the colours I got. Just so you know, all opinions expressed are completely my own. Nobody is paying me to use their products are to talk about them. I bought it, I love it, I use it.

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#dontrushchallenge look

Why create your own lip colour?

I don’t know about you but I don’t always want to go out and buy a new lipstick simply because I need a colour that moment. In fact, I’m naturally a stingy person so I don’t like spending money. I’d rather invest creatively where my imagination can bring about something different. Turns out it’s actually easier to do than I ever thought.

The way I create a lip colour is very similar to highlighting and contouring my face. I prep my lip with a tint, I apply a base, I contour and then I highlight. I rub my lips and voila!

The Process

Below I created a video to better explain the way that I create this custom colour.

https://www.instagram.com/tv/CB2zu88HYow/?igshid=1i1k8c8zz0dvc

The lipsticks used in this video are

  • Maybelline Bold Colorsational Midnight Blue 840,
  • NYX Cosmetic Butter lipstick Licorice,
  • Revlon Colorburst Matte Balm Sultry 225,
  • Colorpop Ultra Matte liquid lipstick Flurries and
  • Manna Kadar liquid lipstick Lucky.

The key is go in light and add as needed. Otherwise, it’ll end up all over your teeth.

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I hope this video was helpful. What custom make up have you been experimenting with lately?

Setting My Hair With Earthtones Natural

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out. Your support is greatly appreciated and I’m so glad you decided to read up on my latest hair care adventures. As most of you already know, if you’ve been following my blog for a while, I am not a professional hairstylist or hair scientist. I am just a regular mom to two beautiful girls, who decided to take control of my natural hair journey in order to better educate my girls and be the example of what natural hair looks like. This does not mean that I am against relaxers and chemically altered hair, I just prefer to deal with my God given curls.
 If by chance your hair is relaxed and you would like some help in caring for your tresses, I highly these two wonderful ladies, @hairlicious and @dominique.baker.
Before we get started I just want to remind you again that I am not a professional in the hair care field. All opinions expressed are strictly my own and have no professional bearing. I just like experiment with different product to ensure that my girls and I (and now you) have the tools necessary to have the hair of your dreams.

Set Your Hair?

Every time I wash my hair I can not just let it air dry, my hair must set. What I mean by that is that I go through my hair while it’s wet and I apply my leave in conditioner and styler. I then proceed to part it in sections, I detangle each part and then braid/twist my hair. This allows me to better manipulate my hair into the style that I want without damaging my hair. It also allows for the curls to pop and shine the way I want them to . 

shared102What is Earthtones Naturals?

For a complete review of this brand and the products purchased please click here

But I loved their hair milk and hair butter so much that I had to use it on my hair. The shine you see in these pictures are absolutely real! 

The milk makes it super easy to detangle your hair using your hands. If you have a favourite detangling tool than you sure will love that combo. But the hair butter is what my ends craved but never knew I needed. This butter makes my feel like butter. Every tangle is a thing of the past and detangling isn’t a worry. 

Last Words…

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I highly recommend using Earthtones Natural products. They are based in Canada and as a fellow black Canadian it is important now more than ever to support our own. Also you won’t have to worry about customs, which for me is a plus. 

Their online customer service is amazing. My package had gotten lost and I contacted them. They were so great. They took care of the situation and kept me in the loop until I received my product. 

I love that they carry a variety of products that are specific to each curl need. Since no two curls are the same they should therefore be treated as such. I will say that my hair has tight curls, low porosity and my ends are extremely prone to damage ever since I’ve been battling dandruff. 

Make sure you check online in order to get the product that is right for your hair and your hair care needs. The Curl Quench line is super hydrating and moisturizing and is perfect for hair that needs a little more oomph in that department. 

Have you used Earthtones Naturals? What are your thoughts?

My 3 Step Skin Care Routine

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog. In case you haven’t been here before, my name is Sandy Esprit. I am happily married and blessed to with two beautiful daughters. My life is super busy but I always do my best to address my skin. For your information this post is not sponsored and all opinions stated are strictly my own.

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The Background Story

Ever since my second daughter was born I had to transition once more into the world of sleepless nights and early mornings all the while being a wife to my then two year old and still functioning as a human being. Stress has never been a friend to my skin, therefore the appearance of acne and dry skin was not welcomed on this pretty little canvas I’ve worked oh so very hard to maintain. This of course was coupled with the appearance of  puffy eyes. Puffy eyes I knew was a sleep deprivation problem but acne and dry skin was not going to be tolerated no matter how exhausted I was.

Within the past six months I’ve curated a three step skin care routine that I can do daily and that don’t take up a lot of time. Considering I have two little ones to get prepare in the morning, time is of the essence. It’s a simple routine that I practice day and night.

The Routine

Cleanser: La Roche Posay Effaclar Purifying Gel

This cleanser has been a staple in my skin care routine ever since I was in university. I was introduced to it by a coworker of mine. My skin problem back then was just acne. I didn’t know anything about skin type but I am so glad she introduced me to it. It cleared up my acne and brought balance to my skin pH. It’s cleanses the skin without stripping it completely. It’s free of alcohol, paraben, soap and dye. Even though my skin is no longer oily, I still swear by it.

Serum: Strivectin Peptight Tightening & Brightening Face Serum

This face serum is what I needed and I didn’t even know it. Based on the name you already know what it does. It tightens the skin and gives it a glow by brightening. I love this because it doesn’t bleach the skin. It’s great for anyone who has dull skin and you’re looking for your skin to have that healthy natural glow.

Moisturizer: La Roche Posay Toleriane Ultra Fluide

If you have sensitive skin and you need a moisturizer that not only provides moisture but allows your skin to retain moisture this is it. It is a very light moisturizer that works wonders on skin that’s been through it all. It doesn’t irritate the skin at all and it is soothing. It is free of preservative, paraben, fragrance, lanolin, alcohol and dye. It is worth every dollar.

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A good skin care regimen is the basis for overall skin health. It’s nice to look in the mirror and not have to deal with flaws or imperfections. It also puts my mind at ease that I can get in and out of bathroom and trust that the products I use will work as they say.

What’s your skin care products do you swear by?

DIY Bath time PlayDough

Hey there! Thank you so much for checking my blog. Your support and your attention is greatly appreciated. Just so you know, this post is not sponsored in any way and all opinions expressed are strictly my own.
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Bath Time Chronicles

In our household, bath time can be a very situation. That’s because my daughter knows that bath time leads to bedtime and bedtime…well bedtime is the opposite of fun. 

Ever since the parks were shut down, my daughter’s main source of fun has been confined to indoors. I had to since, appeal to her creative and boy does she have one. Recently my husband bought playdough but that dried out so, she’s been bored ever since. She always asks for it so I took matters into my own hands. 

PlayDough Search

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I knew that many other moms were far more creative than me and if I could alleviate my daughter’s creative itch than I would do it. After searching on Pinterest for DIY playdough, I found this super easy DIY playdough that my kid could use in her bath. 

Using the DIY Playdough Soap Recipe from Parenting Chaos, I found it super easy to follow. The best part is that there is room for error. You don’t need to worry about ruining a batch or losing a batch. The best part is that the recipe allows for a big batch to be made so you can store some for a later use. 

The Verdict

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Based on that smile you can see that she absolutely loves her playdough. She gets to roll it, pat it, fold and mold it according to her liking. She loves playing with it at the kitchen table while watching her YouTube videos. Every once in a while I am forced to pretend eat a slice of pink “cake” or a pink and red “hamburger”. 

What she loves most is that she can play with it in the bath tub. Eventually, the playdough falls apart in the tub as it foams up but it still retain it’s playdough texture. It foams up when introduced to water. 

Final Thoughts

Bathroom Cabinet Makeover

Hey there! Thanks for checking out my blog. I really having you here and your support (and attention) is greatly appreciated. Please note that this post is not sponsored by any of the products featured here and all opinions expressed are strictly my own. .

It was bad…

For those of you who follow me on Instagram (@iamsandyesprit for those of you don’t but want to follow me), you know that I recently organized my bathroom. They were in dire need of help. If you need the proof, see for yourself.

As you can see everything was everywhere. There was a vague form of organization but it looked more like organized chaos in a sea of an uncontrollable need to just erupt in careless. 

It was bad. I knew and something had to give. Quickly. 

Time to shop…

So I went straight to Amazon. I had an idea of what I wanted my bathroom cabinet to look like. I was inspired after seeing so many fellow influencer re-organizing their closet space. 

I needed to have something to store my make up, my hair products, my oral care products and whatever else I would find in that mess that I’d forgotten about. I searched drawers on Amazon and this came up, ZODDLE. In all honesty, I probably should’ve read the descriptions more carefully. 

I expected a stackable drawer set, that would pull out at the front. These are stackable but they actually pull down from the front. In fact they are not drawers, they are boxes meant to store shoes. But what the hay? I bought them and here they were. 

The Set Up

Now, setting up the first one was not easy. The instructions are pretty easy to follow, I mean if you can handle Ikea instructions, this will be a piece of cake. But still, dealing with the unfolding and setting up the box was a pain. Once I got the hang of it, the rest was easy peasy. 

Believe me, there was so many stuff in there. So with the help of my three year old, we cleared out the cabinets. It took almost three hours to have the cabinets cleaned out and organized. I had to throw out so many things; it’s crazy how many get lost in the midst of the mess. It was therapeutic to be able to sort through it all and have everything I need to made accessible again.  So with the help of my three year old, we cleared out the cabinets. 

The Verdict

If there ever was a time when I felt like I was adulting properly it’s now. Everything has it’s place and everything is easy to find. I have my side, my husband has his side (more like 2 shelves) and all is well with the world. 

My family has been able to sustain this and honestly I’m so proud of us. I don’t know how long it’ll stay this way but for now, everything is in place. 

Have you been reorganizing your space lately? Let me know what’s your process been like in the comments. 

Toddler Hair Wash Day ft. Earthtones Natural

Hey there! Thanks for checking out my blog. All items reviewed have been purchased by me and all opinions are completely my own. This post is no way sponsored by the brand.

If you follow me on Instagram (@iamsandyesprit for those of you who don’t) then you know that I recently purchased hair care products from Earthtones Natural. I’ve been seeing their ads on Facebook and had heard so much about them from Ottawa based hairstylist Paula C.(@curlyhairdesigns). I knew that I just had to try them. 

Why Earthtones Natural?

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Earthtones Natural is a hair care company based in Toronto, Ontario, Canada which is a plus for me because this eliminates custom fees. Also they provide free shipping for purchases over $40. I mean, what’s not to love? I get to support a Canadian based company and I get to save money all around.

I purchased their 125g Curl Condition Hydrating Conditioner, 250g Curl Quench Coconut Moisture Milk and 125g Curl Quench Hair Butter. I knew that the perfect candidate for these products would be my three year old toddler. She hates sitting still, so a hydrating, moisturizing, conditioning products that provide good slip is what this mama needs to get us both through a hair wash day. Would they be up to the challenge? We both would soon find out.

Application Time!!!

After shampooing my daughter’s hair with SheaMoisture Jamaican Black Castor Oil shampoo, I used the Curl Condition Hydrating Conditioner. I ordered the 125g jar, so I knew I didn’t want to use a lot of it. Well, this little jar packs the most slip. The texture of the conditioner is that of a gel-cream, which makes it easy to rub on the palms of your hand and work into the hair. I was able to finger detangle my daughter’s hair with ease within a minute or two of working the product in her hair. It was too easy. My daughter’s hair has a variety of different curl patterns, some parts of her hair are drier and coarser than others, therefore her hair can be a bit difficult to tend to. However, it was not the case with this conditioner. It also smells like a tropical getaway. The smell is so enticing, to me it’s like a pina colada on your hair.

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Once I rinsed out the conditioner, I towel dried her hair to get rid of the excess water. I parted her hair into some medium sized squares and got ready to set her hair for the week. With each square I used half a pump of the Curl Quench Coconut Milk first. The coconut milk feels more like a thicker lotion. It’s not lightweight so it’s best to start off light and apply more as needed. It doesn’t flake and just disappears into the hair.  I worked it throughout each strand with my fingers. Then I used a pea sized (literally a pea) of the Curl Quench Hair Butter and I worked it in starting at the bottom, where her hair tends to be drier. The butter is exactly what you would expect a hair butter to feel like. It is heavy cream and you definitely want to start off light. It provides a nice sheen and it doesn’t weight down the hair. Did I mention it smells amazing?

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Lo and behold, after I worked the product into her hair I was able to easily detangle her hair using my favourite detangling brush with so much. It literally took about 30 minutes to get her hair done. Normally it would take longer. She didn’t squirm as much due to pain. I was in and out and done. She was pleased.

Her hair smells so good. All of the products are a treat to the senses. I definitely recommend this any naturalista looking for products that is curated to provide shine, hydration, slip and easy usage. You don’t need a lot of product to get results.

Final Verdict

shared58Well this smile speaks for the both of us. We absolutely love it. Easy to use and easy to apply

Let me know if you tried it. How did you like it?

New Family Hobbies

Hey there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog. Today I’m just highlighting some of the hobbies that we’ve implemented in our routine to help us all adjust to our new “normal”. Of course, this mean more family time and messy kitchens. In the long run, it’s all worth it.

When I first realized that the parks were closing, I knew that my three year old would be distraught and I was in trouble. My daughter loves to be outside and anytime she can run around is a good day. Unfortunately, running around in the house isn’t a solution I am keen to accept, because she is also prone to bumps and bruises. So I decided to do what any other mama would do. I went to Pinterest and got some ideas.

As a result here are some hobbies that we’ve been adopting to avoid being bored in the house.

Arts & Crafts

Arts & crafts have never been my “thing”. I was never good at drawing or making/constructing anything that looked. In fact, the only type of crafts I’ve been able to perfect since elementary school has been the stick figure. And even then, it may look like an ancient hieroglyphics instead of a person.

Unlike me, my husband is super talented and can draw a sketch of a person that looks like it belongs in animation. But he’ll swear it’s a doodle, nothing more. Go figure! He started making little doodles and I noticed that my daughter asking to draw or paint. Since we didn’t have anything else, I started visiting Pinterest and get some ideas.

We got messy. We painted, made playdough and coloured outside lines…no, seriously this girls can’t keep the colours inside the lines to save her life. But all in all, we had fun. We bonded and she taught me that perfecting arts & crafts is not the goal. Just being with one another, enjoying a moment of creating something was the fun part.

At Home Parties

Growing up, we always had music playing in the house. It wasn’t uncommon for us on a friday night to just start dancing. My mom would often show us the hottest dances from her day and we would show her, what was current in our day. It was so much fun.

So I decided to pass along this “tradition”. The fun doesn’t need to end just because we’re home. We got dressed, put on our dancing outfits and grooved to the music. Surprisingly, Baby Shark was not on the playlist.

Reading

Reading has become a staple and lifesaver when I need the girls to just settle down. When I say the girls, I mean the older one. She has tons of energy and normally doesn’t like to sit still but when it’s story time, she’ll sit. Some of the books she’s already memorized. Her favourites include I Like Myself by Karen Beaumont, Dream Big Little One by Vashti Harrison and Fresh Princess  by Denene Milner.

Baking

I don’t know what it is about being in quarantine but it seems like everyone has been bitten by the baking bug and I was not exempt. Lately I’ve been watching Nailed It! on Netflix and watching everyone run around the kitchen getting their pastries in the oven is highly, until I became that girl in the kitchen. I was second guessing myself and double checking recipes. Meanwhile my sidekick, little miss Mae, was right there with me, mixing and stirring. She is definitely a chef in the making. We honestly have the best time baking in the kitchen. Of course, the eating part is our favourite.

Going For Walks

 

For her birthday, my daughter got some rollerblades. She had been dying to try them and I was really anxious about going outside. But on a beautiful day we took a walk as a family. Within 30 minutes, my girl was skating like a pro (okay maybe more like an advanced amateur) I couldn’t be more proud.

The Verdict

All of these activities are cost effective and really the main ingredient is time. Some days I really have to struggle to find the energy to even get up in the morning. Most days, I just do what I can to make it to naptime and then I count down until bedtime.

You see parenthood is hard. We’re all doing the best that we can. One of these days, the parks will re-open, the community centres will re-open and this little girl will be able to run up the ladder and go down the slide. But until then, we will pick up a new hobby, as a family.

What new hobbies have you picked up?

NYX Lippie For The Holidays

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Hi there! Thanks for checking out my blog. I hope you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.

*Some of the items in this blog were gifted to me at one time but all opinions expressed are strictly my own*

The holidays are coming up and this means parties, get-together and maybe some family portraits. Of course, this means you want to look your best without spending a fortune.

This is why I’ve put together a list of my favourite NYX Lipsticks.

NYX lipstick give you amazing pigment, great quality at an affordable price. They can also be found almost anywhere.

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  NYX Limited Edition Whipped Wonderland Powder Puff Lip Cream in Butterscotch

I found this limited edition Powder Puff Lip Cream at Marshalls for $5.

I love it’s creamy formula. It applies nicely and evenly with amazing precision. I find that it dries down well to a matte finish on the lip but it can dry your lips out. Your best bet is to use a lip balm prior to using it.

This warm toned nude coloured lip cream is great for a “no make-up, make-up” look. It’s very to apply, just squeeze from the bottom and put it on your lips.

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NYX Lingerie Liquid Lipstick in Beauty Mark

This gorgeous liquid lipstick goes on like silk on the skin. It’s a dark chocolate taupe colour and is great for what I call a dramatized nude look.

Depending on the event, you may want to tone it down especially at the family get togethers. So I recommend for an easy application.
You can’t go wrong with this.

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NYX Lingerie Liquid Lipstick in Push-Up

If you want to go for an ombre nude look, why not pair it up with a lighter toned liquid lipstick.

When pairing 2 differing shades, you can create a look that gives you fuller-looking lips without using bold colours.

I must warn you that these liquid lipsticks are highly pigmented and if you have dry lips be sure to exfoliate and use a lip balm before using them. Otherwise you may end up emphasizing the cracks in your lips instead.

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NYX Liquid Suede Metallic Matte Liquid Lipstick in Modern Maven

I’ve personally gotten a lot of compliments with this liquid lipstick.

Like most of their liquid lipstick, I always make sure to wear a lip balm, especially with this one. It dries down to a matte finish. If I don’t wear a lip balm, my lips look like a crusty mess.

However when I do wear my lip balm, I look amazing. This lippie gives me matte shine easily without worrying about even application.

Also it gives me the ability to give my make-up a glam feel without spending an eternity on my face.

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NYX Ombré Lip Duo in Cinnamon & Spice

I bought this on a whim. I didn’t know what to expect to be honest. The first time I tried it, I hated it. I didn’t what I was doing.

Now however it’s a different story. It’s the easiest thing ever. This is like a contour and highlight lipstick in one. You get the lip liner and lipstick in crayon form in one package. This is great for people like me who want to try the latest trend like the ombre lip  but have no idea what they’re doing.

For the novice I highly recommend it, but if you want that professional look please hire a make-up artist.

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NYX Matte Lipstick in Perfect Red

 

If you want a simple, easy glam look for the holidays, I highly this classic matte lipstick. I absolutely love this lipstick.

I pair this up with a cat-eye and off we go.

It’s honestly the best investment I’ve made when purchasing a red lipstick. This red is bold for the inner boss lady in all of us. Or, the last minute mom who just needs to glam up really quickly for that event you forgot was happening because of life.

I mean coffee is great and all, but a red lipstick just takes the term “bright eyes and bushy tailed” to a whole other level.

What are your favourite lippies for the holiday season?

Pregnancy Self Diagnosis Gone Wrong

Hey there! Thank you for checking my blog. For those of you who’ve been following here or on my instagram, you know how anxious I’ve been (click here to read my post regarding this). However, I committed myself to enjoying my pregnancy this time around and sucessfully I did. Until that fateful day when everything changed.

On Sunday, September 22, 2019 I gave birth to my second daughter.

It was everything I didn’t expect.

Like my first, it was a vaginal birth. That’s where the similarities end.

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Unlike my first delivery, my water unknowingly broke on my way down to another city four hours away from home. Unfortunately, without having had my water break before I thought I had a leaky bladder. You see the kicker is that my water broke Friday night at 10:00 pm. I looked the mucous plug, the “showing”, the slight pinkish-bloody fluid (I had done my research) and I saw nothing but clear fluid. I smelled my underwear and smelled urine. So then, I waited for the contractions but got nothing. In my head I was fine and my bladder lost the battle of control to my unborn child.

The next day (Saturday morning), I shot a music video (more on that later) and hung out with my daughter at the beach.

 

 

 

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I was exhausted. Mind you I was still “leaking” but no contractions.

The day went on without any issues, we got back to our room that night and prepared ourselves for the drive back home.

In the middle of the night, or early Sunday morning, I was awakened by a sudden need to use the washroom. At first I felt cramping but I dismissed it as maybe having eaten something that didn’t agree with my stomach. The third time, I had to go to the washroom, the pain that came with it was so intense I knew we had to go to the hospital.

There was no time for epidural. From start to finish everything was less than an hour. I hated labour. I’m grateful it was fast but I hated it.

But she is here. Healthy and thriving.

Unfortunately, because my water broke over 24 hours before the doctors had to do so many tests. This is why I am writing this post.

Losing amniotic fluid during the pregnancy is never good because the amniotic fluid is what keeps the unborn child safe. Without realizing it, I placed my child’s health in jeopardy by not going to the hospital earlier.

Learn from my mistake. If you see leakage that wasn’t there before GO TO THE HOSPITAL!

There is so much information online these day and as much as I love Google, there are certain things that can’t be self-diagnosed. Especially when it comes to your health. So get that professional opinion and be safe.

 

3 Ways (You Probably Missed) To Jumpstart Your Health Journey

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog today. I really appreciate your support and believe me, I am really grateful you took the time out to read this blog. Some of the products displayed on this blog have been gifted to me and this post may contain affiliate. If you choose to buy from these links you won’t pay extra, in fact you may even save money. I’ll get a commission which will keep this blog going. However, all opinions expressed are completely my own.

With everything going on in the media, it’s nice to see this new wave of body positivity in the media. I think we are all grateful to see real bodies being portrayed online but unfortunately there is still a sense of body perfection that has been ingrained in us since our youth. Our bodies keep reminding us that we, in fact, are what we eat. Every day we are closer to old age and for some of us, it’s not just about wrinkle and growing waist lines. We need to be the best version of ourselves not just physically but emotionally and mentally as well. All these areas of our lives work together so that we can ultimately make an impact that will last generations. But the hard part in our individual healthy journey is getting started. So I’m going to give you three very easy and simple ways for you get started.

Let’s Get Started

Disclaimer: I am NOT a doctor. For all health related questions you should always check with a licensed professional first. 

Exercise

The first way to get started in your healthy lifestyle is to exercise and I’m not talking about an extreme HIIT training program. It’s as simple as going for a walk. You need to get moving, get your body moving literally. Unfortunately, walking from the couch to the fridge is not going to cut it. You actually need to get up and go for a walk. According to betterhealth.com, going for a brisk walk for half an hour has so many benefits. It can strengthen your bones, lower chances of cardiovascular diseases, some cancers and type 2 diabetes. It can also improve your cardiovascular health, burn up calories which in turn can reduce fat and increase your muscular strength and power.

But if the thought of walking seems mundane and extremely boring  you can always go on YouTube and find the right exercise. There are so many options to choose from and the internet makes it really easy to choose the cardio exercise that fits us best. Personally, I love dance cardio exercises, even though I can’t keep a beat to save my life. But, I love it. It gets me moving and it makes me feel good.

Snacks

I am a big snacker. For the longest time my weakness was cookies. I could eat an entire tray (or box) of cookies without thinking twice about it. I used to go through at least two boxes of cookies by myself in one week, and that was when I was being careful. I love cookies and chocolate. My teeth have suffered many times because of my sweet tooth.

Before I had my girls, my metabolism was through the roof so weight control was never an issue. Then I gave birth. My metabolism was never the same again. I was growing in places I couldn’t know could grow. My cookie addiction wasn’t helping either. Not only was I not eating properly but I was snacking on the wrong things.

Now I’m not going to sit here and tell you that I started eating celery and carrot sticks because I didn’t. If you see me chewing on such things, know that I have been kidnapped and I need to be rescued ASAP. What I did do however is change the type of sweets I was ingesting. I found these great protein bars by Grenade. There’s no protein aftertaste. It’s just rich chocolate flavours that hit your sweet tooth every time. One bar is filling enough to carry you over from one meal to the next. I absolutely love them. Each bar has 20 grams of protein and less than 2 grams of sugar. Talk about a sweet deal.

Ever since I’ve been eating these bars I haven’t been sitting in front of television binging on cookies and chocolate. I get my sugar from them and it’s amazing. If you want to purchase them, just click here and use the promo code Sandy25 to save 25 percent on your order. It’s totally worth it.

H2O

Since the dawn of time, you have it heard it said that you need to stay hydrated. I know you love your fizzy and colourful drinks but there is truly nothing better than water. This is coming from a coffee lover. My brain will literally not record anything until I’ve had at least one cup of coffee. I love caffeine! But when it comes to the battle of the great, water is queen!

Incorporating more water intake into your diets means the following, better bowel movements, clearer skin, less dry throats, decrease in headaches, better sleep, more energy and maybe more trips to the bathroom. Staying hydrated isn’t just a seasonal thing it’s an all year thing.

Here’s some more benefits from healthline.com for those of you who need more convincing. Drinking more water can prevent hangovers, help treat kidney stones, increase your physical performance and honestly will keep you so busy by going to the bathroom you will have no time to worry about anybody else (that last bit is my own science lol). The long term benefits are amazing and worth making the switch.

In conclusion,

What you do with your health is ultimately up to you. But you deserve to live a complete and fulfilling life. The best version of yourself is just one choice away. I hope that these little tricks will help motivate you into living your best life, your own way.

How did I do? Did I miss anything? Let me know in the comments.

 

5 Ways To Know If It’s Worth Your Coin

Hey there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog. I really appreciate your support. If you do not already know, my name is Sandy Esprit and I’m here to help you keep your coin. All opinions expressed are completely my own, my hope is that you get the information you need to equip you the next time you find yourself  mindlessly scrolling and buying yourself so much hair products you end up with a small beauty supply store in your bathroom cabinet. Girl, you know you have a problem…but I’m not here to judge, lol. Besides, you want to enjoy the products you buy, right? 

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Let’s get into it. 

Check the reviews

This is something every shopper should be doing. Just because your favourite influencer recommended it doesn’t mean that the general consensus agrees. Online reviews are thoughts and opinions expressed by the general public for better-ing ourselves…and investing in proper hair care. 

Now mind you this is not foolproof plan because every once in a while you’ll get a product that fits your personal needs that most people absolutely hate. Also if the product is new, you may get people using the product improperly. But once the product has been on the market for a minute, you can pretty much trust what’s out there. 

Research The Ingredients

inf_15444585802852122146018.jpgIf you want to know the quality of the product, then the ingredients will tell you everything you need to know about it. What the product is made of will most likely tell you how your hair will react to it. You never want to put something on your hair that will flake, be hard to absorb into the hair cuticles and/or give you false hope. For example, a hair product may promise to heal your deep fried (heavily damaged) ends, it’s a lie. Once your hair is damaged, it’s time for a cut. No matter of product can change that. 

How Fast Do You Empty The Bottle

20181022_1144561047272849.jpgThis is something I recently came to realization of. I bought this leave in conditioner and I really wanted to like it. I mean one of my favourite youtuber was behind it. It smelled amazing. The price was amazing for the amount given. The texture was light and fluffy. The packaging was user friendly. But there was one problem. I needed so much product to get the result I wanted to see in my hair. I was pumping away like an addict. Only when the bottle was empty did I realize that all that money could have been spent elsewhere. I went through the product like water. I’m still upset about it. 

Do Professionals Use It

20180209_1418401761445661.jpgThis one should be a dead giveaway. Professional hairstylist use quality products in order to provide quality service. If you trust a professional (I mean one that operates out of a salon and not your cousin’s bathtub) to do your hair, you trust the products they use. There is a reason why they use these products on your hair. However, if they won’t even touch the product with a 10 foot pole, chances are their reasons are valid. If they can’t make it work, then believe me you won’t be able to either. 

Does It Do What It Says

I know I’m probably preaching to the choir but it must be stated. If it doesn’t do what it says then you wasted your money. Mind you, you have to use the product as intended, the way the instructions say to use it. You wouldn’t expect a conditioner to act as a shampoo, right? You would expect a shampoo to act as a shampoo. If my shampoo leaves my hair dirtier than the way I started, then we have a problem. Same with a leave in conditioner. Many products claim to be really moisturizing but they are not. Sometimes they claim to be able to heal all damages due to a special ingredient, chances are you are getting duped. Make sure it does, what it says it will do. Otherwise, you are getting hustled out of your money. 

 

I hope this was helpful. Let me know if you have ways of securing your bag and keeping your coin in it. 

 

 

My Postpartum Truths

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog today. I really appreciate your support and believe me, I am really grateful you took the time out to read this blog. Some of the products displayed on this blog have been gifted to me and this post may contain affiliate. If you choose to buy from these links you won’t pay extra, you fact you may even save money. I’ll get a commission which will keep this blog going. However, all opinions expressed are completely my own. 

Here are some things that I have learned about my body that I just never paid attention to:

It takes a whole year for body to return to normal

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Say what, now?! Yes ma’am! A whole freakin’ year. What your baby set up for your body in 9 months will take 12 whole  months to dismantle. Why? Because it can. As it should. Pregnancy change the entire biology of a woman. From the hormonal changes that causes nausea, to the weight gain, to sleepless nights, back pain, Braxton-Hicks within 9 months is a short amount of time. You want your body gradually go back to normal as you and baby find your ‘new’ normal. So the stretch marks may stick but wear it with pride, those are your tiger stripes and you earned every single of them. 

Your period may return sooner than expected

This really vexed me, right here. I’ve always had bad cramps during menstruation so when I heard that breastfeeding could keep me from getting my period I was excited. Also what a great way to avoid another pregnancy so soon after the baby was born (not that it’s a full proof way of not getting pregnant, but you know). Turns out, that doesn’t happen to everyone, and I learnt it the hard way.

Mine came back so fast, you’d swear there was a conspiracy for me to get pregnant as fast as possible. Regardless, make sure you use the proper protection if you’re trying to avoid getting pregnant as soon as you gave birth.  

You can gain weight while breastfeeding

Again, I kept hearing that one of the benefits of breastfeeding was weight loss, but did you know you can actually gain weight? Me neither. This is when I found out ignorance is not bliss. I gained a good 10-15 pounds postpartum. Turns out you can’t give what you don’t have nutrients included. My appetite increased as I breastfed, my choice of fast f

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ood and junk food diet did not help in caloric deficit factor, so naturally I gained weight. Which by the way is perfectly normal.

The older sibling is willing to help

One thing that surprised the most was how much my eldest daughter wanted to help, I mean really wants to be involved and help. Despite the fact that she was not at all excited for the arrival of her sibling she completely makes herself available as the self appointed chief security guard for her baby sister. She alerts when the baby is crying, even though we are in the same room. She may not want to share her toys but she’s ready to change a diaper or feed the baby (neither of which I’m ready to let a three year old do)!

You will be challenged in every way

I thought one was tough, then I had another one and realized I did not know what I was 

talking about. One is tough. Two is tough too. Both situations are hard but in a different way. There are different factors and scenarios to even dive into so believe me that they are both tough but nothing that cannot be handled and tackled. The beauty in all of this is no phase stays the same forever. 

Remember to ask for help if and when necessary

ALWAYS. ASK. FOR. HELP! No, you don’t need to do it all. NO. YOU. DON’T! If anybody tells you, send them my way for a nice chat. You deserve a break. You deserve sleep. You deserve to eat. You deserve to have time to breathe and reconnect with the woman that you are. We need you. Your family needs the best of you, not the worn down version of you. Get the help you need, when you need. No compromise. 

You may lose your sleep, your mind and your hair?!

That part shocks me everytime I think about it. I know it’s coming but it’s the ultimate betrayal. First I can’t sleep, then my mind isn’t all there but my hair?! Yup. My edges have been playing hide and go seek for about 10 months. I know they’ll come back but it still hurts…

Every birth experience is different but no less special

This is self explanatory. No birth is the same but they are all special. Enjoy your blessing because pregnancy is not a joke. So many things can go wrong and for many it does. If you’ve been blessed with life, to carry life, birth life, please count your blessings. Enjoy the moments you’ve been given. It’s a gift to be enjoyed. 

 

 

My Healthy Body is Not a SnapBack

Hi there! Thank you so much for checking out my blog today. I really appreciate your support and believe me, I am really grateful you took the time out to read this blog. Some of the products displayed on this blog have been gifted to me and this post may contain affiliate. If you choose to buy from these links you won’t pay extra, you fact you may even save money. I’ll get a commission which will keep this blog going. However, all opinions expressed are completely my own. 

.When I gave birth to my eldest daughter I was obsessed with getting my snapback. I thought I would be like all the celebrities and instagram models I kept seeing. I did everything I could to lose  weight. I exercised, I did a low-carb diet, I tried my best to sleep but have you tried to maintain a healthy lifestyle with a newborn with little to no help? It’s absolutely impossible. It took me a whole year to get back to my pre-baby weight and even then I was 5 pounds heavier. I had a little mommy pouch which was still very new to me. I just didn’t understand why it wasn’t. So I just stopped caring and focused on building my self-esteem so that my girl would have a confident mother who could effectively show her what self-confidence looks like.

When I gave birth to my second daughter, I thought it would be easier to lose the weight because I was so small to begin with. But to be honest I didn’t really care about the weight. I just wanted to be happy and confident. Until five months later, I was asked if I was pregnant, which followed up with a dietary suggestion. Well, let’s just say that completely messed up what little body confidence I had. My whole life my body was critiqued for being small now I was critiqued for being overweight. I’m not going to lie, I was overweight but who cares?

Turns out, some people. If I was truly honest with myself, I would say that I cared too. I didn’t want to be as small as before. I liked my womanly figure. I celebrated the layers of fat that my pre-baby body once rejected like a virus. I liked that I had curves. I liked it a lot. What I didn’t like was being called pregnant, looking pregnant and having a belly that just didn’t want to behave with the rest of my body. I wanted to feel good. I’m a visual person, so I know that when I like what I see in the mirror I feel better about me. 

So I decided to do better. It started with the exercises. As uncoordinated as I was I knew that I had to get my body moving again. I couldn’t just sit around on the couch all the time and live vicariously through my energetic toddler. The calories she burned were not my own. The endorphins she produced were not my own either. 

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And it just kept on building. I was able to try NeoCell Beauty Bursts, which are these delicious collagen soft chews that taste like candy. I took one everyday and noticed that my skin started looking better. I drank more water and felt like I had more energy. I wasn’t losing weight, at least not according to the scale but I saw improvements in my overall well-being. 

As you can see in this picture, I am still resting my arm on my post-partum pooch. It’s a bad habit that I’ve grown fond of. I know I said I hated having a big belly but I never said it didn’t come with its own perks. Who needs an arm rest, when you have a belly to rest your arm on?

Please understand that life at home wasn’t the greatest. We were in the middle of a pandemic. Literally on a lockdown, so there wasn’t a gym I could join or go to. We couldn’t go to the park because they were closed. My edges were falling out. I wasn’t sleeping throughout the night because I was breastfeeding. I was not eating well, in fact most mornings I would skip because I was so busy making sure that everyone else had breakfast.  I was the only one working out, literally. I had no one to be accountable to but myself. 

I also was a cookie addict so I needed to address that. The late night Oreo binge would need to come to an end. I knew it but I kept it delaying it until God answered my prayers with these Grenade protein bars. I normally hate protein bars because I find that they have a really bad after taste. But Grenade are OMG delicious! 

They pack some serious chocolate and I LOVE chocolate. My favourites are chocolate chip and salted caramel which remind of me of a Mars bar. As well as the cookie dough which remind me of a Twix bar. They have so many selections to choose from. It curbs from hunger and keeps me from attacking the cookie cupboard like a starving fiend. They are a true lifesaver. If you want to try them for yourself (believe me, you won’t be disappointed) click this link https://bit.ly/Grenade_Sandy and use the code SANDY25 to save 25% on your order.

When I changed my eating habits and added  to my work out routine to make them more challenging things really began to change. In two months I lost 10 pounds. It’s not a lot but for me it’s enough. I’ve got more energy and I’m more driven now. I’ve noticed this spill over into other areas of my life. I now schedule breaks, which doesn’t come naturally to me. But in order to be my best self, I need to be rested. 

I love that what started as a health journey was more the jump start I needed to focus. I wanted to look better so I could feel better. However it dawned on me that it was never about the physical body but the spiritual and emotional body. Once I was aligned I was able to thrive. 

Have you experienced something similar? Let me know in the comments.