6 Truths About Helicopter Parents

My parenting style can be best described as a hybrid mashup—a combination of authoritative, authoritarian, and permissive. But if one parenting style was to surface and all others sink, at the end of the day I would emerge a predominantly helicopter parent. The term "helicopter parenting" was coined back in 1990 by child development researchers Foster Cline and Jim Fay in their book, Parenting With Love and Logic. Helicopter parents, according to the official definition, take an overprotective or excessive interest in the life of Read more

How to Plan the Ultimate Staycation

Who wouldn’t want to take a vacation every month, or even every weekend? Unfortunately for most, there isn’t room for a trip in the schedule—or budget. Plus, as most holiday vacations prove, it can be exhausting and overwhelming to coordinate a family trip out of town. That’s why many people in need of a small getaway take staycations instead. Staycations allow you to relax and do fun activities with your family, all without the expense of travel or booking Read more

Top of the Tingles: The ASMR A-List

Relaxation. Euphoria. Tingling. These are the words used to describe the result of an Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response, or ASMR, trigger. In a piece I recently wrote for Sanity & Self, I describe the concept as "the physical response to auditory, visual, or tactile triggers, usually a tingly sensation similar to feeling chills. Think of the goosebumps you might get when someone whispers into your ear. That’s ASMR. Most experts attribute ASMR’s relaxing sensations to the release of endorphins, Read more

Self-Discovery Questions to Ask Yourself Each Day

In today’s uber-connected world, it’s so easy to get caught up in your phone wherever you go. Whether you're responding to work emails, organizing your kids’ schedules, or updating your Instagram, the hours can fly by before you know it. While this is certainly convenient, it can become unhealthy if it turns into a habit. Because we’re all so busy, your mental health could be suffering and you wouldn’t even know it because you’re too preoccupied to pay attention Read more

Self-Care With Hygge

Taking time for yourself as a mom can be difficult between appointments, errands and keeping everyone fed, on time and in clean clothes. Finding ways to fit in self-care and moments to yourself are so important, even short breaks can have a positive impact on your day. One shortcut to make sure you get the change to recharge is make your house ready for relaxation whenever you are. You may have heard of it as an emerging decor trend, hygge Read more

My Thoughts on Lance Armstrong, Self-Serving Tygarts and What Martha Stewart Would Say

Posted on by Crystal in Lifestyle | 3 Comments

It was a sad morning to wake up and read headlines talking about Lance Armstrong on the verge of being banned from the world of cycling FOREVER and losing his seven Tour de France titles (which is now a reality) – all at the hands of a little outfit known as the U.S. Anti-Doping Agency or more specifically, it’s fearless (and obviously narcissistic) chief, Travis Tygart. Non-analytical evidence is being used this time around – testimony from fellow cycling teammates, several who claim they saw Armstrong inject himself with “EPO”, a naturally occurring hormone.

No one can say for sure what really happened – but Armstrong has stressed time and time again that he is innocent. Whether or not you believe him, he has passed hundreds of drug tests and was exonerated of all charges years ago. Obviously, that wasn’t good enough for some. Read more

We All Have Our “Quirks”

Posted on by Crystal in MUDDies | 2 Comments

I think and do some weird shit. I admit it. For instance, I use K-cups twice. The second time around might yield a weaker cup of coffee, but I still get a good fix off a slightly used K-cup. Plus, it saves money. That’s always a good thing, right? Here are some other weird things I think and do, see if you can relate (and don’t be shy – comment and let us know!)… Read more

Finding Success as a Mommy Blogger

Posted on by Crystal in MUDDies | Leave a comment

Recently I’ve been speaking with a handful of successful mommy (and daddy) bloggers about how they achieved building strong readership and, for lack of a better term, brand recognition. A theme has definitely emerged – each blogger found one thing that united or excited the people of their individual communities and ran with it. For a few, this was a special cause or charity they established. For others, it was an ongoing story centered around a specific theme, like moms who wear high heels, or topic, like adoption. Most started blogging without any intended purpose – they just wanted to share their crazy lives with others. They didn’t expect to achieve anything too significant and they certainly never thought they would be considered among the most influential bloggers in the world. It was that one thing that made all the difference – transforming each of them from unknown blogger to rock star blogger. Some did it in as little as a few months, others it took years. But each has achieved something great.

All of this chatter and excitement has caused me to reflect on my own mommy blogging efforts, which I began almost two months ago (not a first-time blogger). Read more

Stonewall Kitchen: Great Products for Busy Moms

Posted on by Crystal in Lifestyle | Leave a comment

I mentioned in a previous post that I recently placed second in a Pinterest contest winning a gift certificate to Stonewall Kitchen. If you’ve never heard of Stonewall Kitchen before, let me just say, it’s to die for! This purveyor of specialty foods got its start at a local farmer’s market. Today, the company has 9 stores throughout New England and is featured in retail establishments nationwide. And I happen to love their products! Read more

How Mommy Bloggers Can Use LinkedIn

Posted on by Crystal in Lifestyle | 28 Comments

Think LinkedIn is all about showing off your resume and qualifications or simply a tool for performing a job search? Think again. LinkedIn is actually a very beneficial tool for mommy bloggers and can be an incredible resource for your blog. Considered the ultimate B2B social networking platform, I use it extensively for my social media clients and believe it is one of the most effective drivers of leads, traffic and referrals (when used correctly).

Now you might be cringing at the thought of adding yet another social media platform to your efforts. I promise you will not be disappointed. Thankfully, once set up, LinkedIn requires less time and effort than maintaining a Facebook page or keeping up with Twitter.

Here are a few reasons you want to be on LinkedIn: Read more

Old-Time Fried Cakes Recipe

Posted on by Crystal in Lifestyle | Leave a comment

Still digging into the old recipe tin I found stashed in a moving tote. Another gem turned up, again in my grandmother’s handwriting, a recipe for “Fried Cakes.” I had to improvise because I think she assumed we would all know how to whip these up. Enjoy! Read more

Are you a tattooed mommy?

Posted on by Crystal in MUDDies | Leave a comment

A few years ago, I got a tattoo on the back of my upper right shoulder. That’s right. I’m a tattooed mommy. And I don’t regret it. I gave years of consideration and thought to whether or not I wanted to forever mark my body and when I decided I did, gave it years more thought as to what graphic representation I wanted. Read more

10 Must-Follow “Tips for Moms” Pinterest Boards

Posted on by Crystal in Lifestyle | 1 Comment

Pinterest is the new playground for millions of women around the world, including moms. Some of my favorite boards feature pins that truly help my “mothering” efforts. Whether you’re a seasoned pinner or just venturing on to Pinterest for the first time, these “Tips for Moms” Pinterest boards will help you save time and money and possibly prevent you from pulling your hair out. They are definitely worthy of your follow! Read more

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