Renovation Before and After: Part One

Hi family and friends! It’s been awhile since we did a little renovation update. When I started this blog, I had originally planned to share our journey in moving back to the states. A few months ago, I wrote a post about the foreclosure we bought, and then failed to update you again. A lot has happened and once our house was in livable condition, we moved in and took

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How to Perform the Perfect Squat and Decrease Back Pain

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #StopPainNow #CollectiveBias 

As someone with a bit of history as a fitness instructor and an athlete (olympic weightlifting), I have noticed that proper movement often creeps its way into other parts of life. When we pick something up or put it down, we are simply doing a deadlift or a squat, just like in the gym! The difference is, instead of a barbell, we’re doing it with household items, groceries, or even our kids. So, just as we are mindful of form in the gym, we should be just as careful in everyday life. This is especially vital for those of us suffering from chronic pain, or muscle pain from overuse.

Since being diagnosed with spondylolysis, or a pars defect, about 3 years ago, I’ve experienced chronic back pain. In short, the defect is a small fracture in my back that I do NOT want surgery on, as it would possibly limit my mobility for life! As a fitness lover, and also a mom who needs to be able to pick up babies, squatting with proper form and using Curamin® Stop Pain Now*+ for pain management became my ways to ensure comfort. Because I’ve succeeded in both of these, I’m able to continue working out and chasing after my kids without a hitch.

I’d love to share with you how to perform a squat, as well as why I chose the award winning pain relief product, Curamin®. Let’s start with the squatting!

How to Perform the Perfect Squat

1. Stand with feet approximately shoulder width apart.


– You will likely need to point your toes outward slightly! You may even need to try a few different stances until finding what is perfect for you.

– At this point, remind yourself that both your legs AND core are involved here. Engage them as you prepare to move!

2. With heals planted firmly to the ground, bend at the knees and lower the hips. As you are bending, extend your arms in front of you. Try to reach parallel or below!


– Keep your chest up and your head and eyes facing forward. If you look down, your chest will drop, and you’ll increase the likelihood of falling forward. I often look at or just above my hands, once my arms are extended!

– The legs bend and the hips drop simultaneously. If you cannot get to the correct depth, it’s okay! When I say parallel, I am referring to your thigh being parallel with the ground. That depth or lower is the goal!

– Try your best not to let the knees wobble inward. If it happens, tell yourself to push your knees outward.

3. By pushing the heels into the ground, stand back up.


– Just as the legs bent and hips hinged at the same time on the way down, they will straighten simultaneously on the way up as well.

– Aside from your hamstrings, you should feel your glutes activate to send you up!

– You will bring your arms back to your side, ending in your original standing position.

Using Curamin® Stop Pain Now for Chronic Pain

As I mentioned before, I deal with chronic pain, yet like to continue working out and picking up my twin boys and our pup. After trying over-the-counter medications that only masked the pain, I searched for a better alternative. I chose Curamin® after learning that it is composed of clinically studied ingredients that have been proven safe for pain relief. The non-addictive herbal supplement has been voted #1 for pain relief and continues to build upon it’s 28 awards. Since it has helped hundreds of thousands of people world wide, it’s no surprise that it has helped me as well!

The combination of correct movement patterns with exercises like squatting and the use of Curamin® have been life savers. I encourage everyone to be aware of how their bodies are moving, and notice if you are lifting items incorrectly, causing unnecessary stress on your spine. Being aware of my body and finding a supplement that works have helped me to follow through with daily activities without any pain. Curamin® is available at fine health food stores nationwide. I pick mine up from the friendly staff at my local Fresh Thyme, but be sure to check out the store locator!

If you have any stories of chronic pain, or are working on your squat technique, I’d love to hear about it! Also, if you need any extra tips, you are welcome to contact me!

+Occassional muscle pain due to exercise or overuse.

*SPINSscan Other Herbal Formulas Subcategory, Brand Rank ending 11/2016

*+ pain due to exercise or overuse

What I Love Most About Being a New Mom

This review was made possible by iConnect and Luvs.  I was provided compensation to facilitate this post, but all opinions stated are 100% mine.

This past year was my first year of motherhood, and boy was it trying. I’m sleep deprived, drowning in laundry, and I’ve spent more time with my breast pump than I have with my husband (who is also exhausted). Almost every new mom that I’ve met has found her life to be similar to mine, which made me realize something. When we chat, we often bring up the downsides of being new parents. I get it, we need to vent and ease our minds a little. However, what about

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How to Make Your Dog Feel Special After Baby Arrives

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #TheDogumentaries #CollectiveBias

Before our twin boys arrived, we had considered our dog, Oly, our baby. We had adopted her as a puppy and she did absolutely everything with us. I even took her to work with me, so she wouldn’t be lonely throughout the day. About a year ago, I gave birth to twin boys and suddenly all of our lives changed, including Oly’s! She was no longer the center of attention, but I was certainly afraid that she would feel confused or left out. We wanted to make her still feel

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5 Tips to Soothe a Crying or Colicky Baby

Bringing a newborn home for the first time is an overwhelming feeling. Parents are usually over the moon, and want to spend quality time with their new arrivals. Occasionally, plans for “family time” get interrupted and we find ourselves helpless, with a crying baby (or babies!) in our arms. We’ll ask ourselves questions such as: Is baby hungry? Is he too hot or too cold? Does he need a diaper change? Does he have colic? How about

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Why We Supplement with Organic Formula

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #WhyPlumFormula #CollectiveBias #Sponsored

Since their birth last February, our twin boys, H and H, have consumed breast milk to their little hearts’ content. As many of you know, I’m an exclusive pumper and have been fortunate enough to keep a generous milk supply for almost a year. What you may not have known, is that they consumed formula to supplement their feedings during their NICU stay. This was to assist

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Valentine’s Day Handprint Art Fail, and Why I Love It

Okay Pinterest addicts, you are going to be disappointed here. Let me just remind all of you, that it’s the thought that counts, right? The crafts that my children and I have created are not the typical ones that you have seen. They aren’t the dictionary definition of pretty, they were not well-done, and the end result does not look like something that we could sell on Etsy. After you check out our activity, I’ll tell you why I still LOVE our results!

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Why is Your Face Flat? Building an Inner Voice…

Over the past few months, my twins, H and H, have become more mobile, more vocal, and absolutely more expressive. They now have tones to their squeals when something is wrong, and also when something is right. For the better part of each day, they are so, so happy. Their laughter fills their playroom and their little smiles surface so easily. As a new parent, I am in awe of

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My Diaper Bag Essentials

As a mom of twins, I keep a pretty full diaper bag when we go out. I often think, “maybe I could leave a few diapers out,” or “maybe I don’t need these extra onesies,” but I don’t actually end up leaving anything out. Why? Because I know that my kids aren’t thinking, “maybe I won’t explosively crap myself today.” Still though, I don’t like lugging around extra stuff…I already have an extra baby to carry (kidding)! My guess though, is that YOU don’t want to carry extra things either, so I’ve decided to let you in on what’s in my diaper bag, how much of each item I have, and what I

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