Author Archives: Helen

The Plan

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The last time I posted, I was celebrating a birthday. The next time I post, I’m celebrating the new year.

Yes, I know that it is twenty-nine days past the new year.

But regardless of how many days have passed, it is the new year. That means it is a new opportunity to begin anew and to recharge. Life is a continuous journey, but one with many twists and turns to change.

So, here are five ways that I wish to change. Call them New Year’s Resolutions, if you will. Or not, because calling them New Year’s Resolutions puts too much pressure. They are simply a to-do list.

1–Start my career in the social media / marketing industry. I’ve known for a long time that my passion is in social media. I love to talk to people. I love to give advice. I love to interact with the hope that I am making a difference in people’s lives.  If I can do that on a bigger scale, nothing would make me happier (well, except for my daughter of course).

2–Watch my daughter continue to grow and raise her to be a smart, beautiful toddler. She is eleven months old now and such a joy to behold, however cliche that may sound.

3–Learn, learn, learn everything there is to know about social media. I’ve been using social media for awhile but I also realize that there is still more to learn, particularly since new features and add-ons are constantly being added and implemented. I plan on using SnapChat and Quora and implementing them to continue to grow my personal brand.

4–Read books. Read more books. I love books. I’ve always loved books. I love the written word. I love curling up in bed with a deliciously good book to read.

5–Write. I want to write more. Books, stories, poems, dreams, hopes for the future. I want to write more on the human condition to try to help and motivate others.

So, that’s it. These are my plans for 2017. Comment below and tell me what you plan on doing this year!

Birthday: A Day of Memory & Hope

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My mother’s birthday was on the fifteenth of September. It was the ninth year that I “celebrated” her birthday without her.

My mother died nine years ago, in 2008. In the beginning it was hard. I was especially close with my mom. I told her everything, or as much as any teenage girl told their mom anyway. Even when I went off to college to live in the dorms, I used to stay up late talking to her on the phone.

It’s been nine years since my mother died. I still think about her everyday. Lately, I’ve been thinking about her more, since the birth of my daughter. I wish that my mom could have lived to see my daughter.

But things happen and you can’t change the past. You can only go forward in life.

Every year, I think of my mom on her birthday. I think of how she died. I think of the memories that we shared when I was a child, a teenager, and a college student. Her birthday is not just another day. It is a day to remember the woman who gave birth to me. It is a day to remember the influence that she had on me. And finally, it is a day to remember and then pass the memories on to my child.

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Writing is Magical

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Throughout the life of this blog, I’ve mentioned (time and again) that I love to write. I’ve told you about my experience participating in Nanowrimo. I’ve told you about how much I love to make-believe. And, believe me, writing is a big part of make believe.

But more than that, I enjoy the feeling that I get when I sit down in front of my laptop or my pen poised over paper as I prepare to write a word, a paragraph and the beginnings of a story. It’s a wonderful feeling of anticipation. I feel as if I am standing on the edge of a cliff about to jump without knowing what’s below.

Writing is the same way. When you write, you take risks. You start off with a single word, a single idea, or a short snippet of dialogue. This eventually grows larger as you write. It eventually fills out as you create a new world composed of an entirely unique set of characters and places.

And this all came about from a single word, a single idea, or a short snippet of dialogue. This is why writing is truly magical.

I nominate myself!

Alex, over at Editos & poesies, was nominated for the Sunshine Blogger Award. He answered questions posed by another blogger. I will now attempt to answer his questions.

  1. Beach or Mountains?

Living in Florida, I live by the beach. The beach is great. Water’s great. Weather is nice. But I’m going to choose the mountains simply because they are absolutely gorgeous. And have you ever hiked up a mountain? I have.  It is truly one of those once-in-a-lifetime experience.

2. Party animal or isolation devotee?

I do admit, I like to be alone. I think that goes hand-in-hand with being a writer and bibliophile.

3. Why did you choose this path?

This can mean so many different things. Why did I choose to get a degree in Communications and hopefully start my career in that field? I love Communications and all of the subjects that it entails — PR, social media, marketing, writing, design. It has a little bit of everything. In fact, I’ve written a blog post on this subject previously. Check it out here.

4. Thoughts on the state of humanity?

I think humans are generally good people. Humans are good people who make certain choices in life, which can be either good or bad. Humans are born as a blank slate — a blank canvas — and it is life experiences that shape that canvas.

5. Favorite drink?

I love drinking Iced Mocha with whipped cream on top. So delicious.

6. What do you look for, in a novel?

Primarily, I look for a book that makes me think. I like books that are thought provoking with good writing (good descriptions, dialogue, and well-developed characters). I also like books that tell a good story. I like reading mysteries and suspense and adventure and fantasy, but I wouldn’t say no to a good romance novel!

7. Same as previous (in a person of the opposite sex)?

I like intelligent, good-looking,  ambitious, kind men. I like men who I feel comfortable with and can have conversations with. But, at the same time, I like men who truly gets me and knows me from the inside out.

8. Music or silence?

I’ve never been one to like music. I treasure my silence very much. Although, I do like the simple sounds of leaves falling out of trees and rain on the roof.

9. Hotel or motel?

Hotel. Hotels are much nicer.

10. Am I funny?

Well, Alex, I find your tweets quite entertaining. Alex’s twitter page is here. Follow him! 🙂

And now, here are my questions:

  1. Social media or social outing?
  2. iPhone or Android?
  3. Favorite food?
  4. Favorite color?
  5. How long have you been blogging?
  6. What do you think about religion and spirituality?
  7. What do you think about the state of the government today?
  8. Ketchup or mustard?
  9. What is the strangest thing you’ve ever done?
  10. Have you ever taken a road trip?

I nominate… everyone who reads this post. Let me know in the comments below if you choose to participate by posting a link to your blog. I would love to see your answers to my questions above!

5 Things You Really Don’t Need for Baby

20160903_130449.jpgRecently, I published a blog post about the five most essential things for baby. Today, I’d like to give you the top 5 things that you really don’t need for a newborn baby. I didn’t realize this before I had my child, but the baby industry sells a lot of things for baby in an attempt to make money (and it works).  But for parents on a budget, you can make do with the main essentials. Here are the five things that I found that I really did not need for my baby girl.

  1. Burp Cloth

You don’t really need a burp cloth. Sure, they are intended to be placed on your shoulder or knee to catch any of that precious spit-up. But, you can just use a wash cloth, towel, or receiving blanket.

2. The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding (you can purchase it here on Amazon).

Yes, as an exclusively breastfeeding mom, this book was really interesting to read. But, truth be told, it didn’t tell me the things that I hadn’t already found through Google.

3. Pacifiers

Turns out that not all babies take pacifiers. Mine doesn’t.

4. Shoes

You don’t really need to buy shoes for babies because they don’t know how to walk yet. If it’s cold, just slip on a pair of warm socks and the baby is good to go.

5. Play Gym (I have this one from Fisher-Price)

Yes, a play gym is a cute place for baby to play. But really, you can just lay baby on a soft blanket with a bunch of toys around baby.

So, these are the five things that I feel that I really did not need for baby. Tell me what you think. What items were unnecessary when you had your little one?

The Most Amazing Thing Ever!!!

Do you know what the most amazing thing in life is?

Watching your child grow up before your eyes.

The past six months have went by so fast. It feels like yesterday that my little girl was swaddled up and they were handing her to me. I remember night after night waking up to feed her and change her diaper. I remember watching her struggle to keep her head up, until finally she gazed back at me with a huge smile and her head very steady. I remember the first time that she reached for her foot. I remember the first time when she sat up when she was sitting in her bouncer. Now, she can sit up (with support), crawl around on her belly, talk (baby sounds), and eat (baby cereal).

Here’s a compilation of the first six months with a baby:

5 Essential Things For Newborn Baby

 

5Z8QJ8SIHDLike every new parent, I wanted to buy nearly everything and anything for my first child. I wanted to spoil her rotten. I wanted her to have a pink, princess-themed nursery. I wanted nothing but the best for my daughter. But, as it turns out, you need very little for a newborn baby.

So, I’ve compiled a list of 5 things that I found to be most useful for my baby girl.

  1.  Breast Pump

As any breastfeeding mom knows, a breast pump is absolutely essential. You’re going to want it for those times you need to bottle feed you baby.  I have the Lansinoh manual breast pump.

 

2. Several Sleep ‘N Plays

Do you know that all your newborn baby is going to do is sleep and eat and poop and sleep some more? That’s why it’s good to get a couple of Sleep ‘N Plays that you can quickly and efficiently get your baby in and out of for those middle of the night diaper changes. Plus, they are super comfy for baby. I had several of those in the newborn sizes. But looking back, I wish I had bought them in the 0-3 month size. My baby girl outgrew her newborn clothes so fast.

3. Diaper bag

My diaper bag came in so handy. It was big enough to fit all of the baby essentials, such as bottles, breast feeding cover up, wash cloth, extra onesies, reusable changing pad, diapers, wipes, blankets, and all those little odds and ends that a little baby needs. Plus, diaper bags are cute and adorable!

4. Onesies

Onesies are so easy to get baby into. You just slip the onesie over the baby’s head and then snap it shut. It’s super easy for diaper changes. And they come in so many different colors. Baby can lounge in these things all day. Check out these adorable onesies I bought for my baby.

5. Receiving blankets

Receiving blankets are so useful and there are so many uses for them. You can use them to swaddle your newborn baby. You can use them as a burp cloth. You can use it as a comfort item for baby. They are lightweight and come in so many different colors and styles.

Tell me what you consider to be some of the most essential things for baby.