Upside Down French Braid Bun – ‘Prom’otional Dance Updo Hair Idea

It’s close to the end of the school year and ironically, it’s as busy as the beginning of the school year. We have last year field trips, dances, class parties, award ceremonies and graduations. It’s all so bitter sweet but so lovely to enjoy along side the children.

This past Friday was my daughter’s 5th grade dance, they called it ‘prom’otional,’ as they didn’t want it to be confused with a prom like dance. I personally thought it was a clever idea, so sweet and the children had a phenomenal time.

So, my daughter has long hair as you can remember from here and her request for the dance was to keep the hair in a ponytail. I decided on the upside down French braid and on top, to place it in a braided bun. As if my life wasn’t complicated enough, right?! I looked at quick tutorials online the night before and woke up a little earlier than usual to try to get the hair do right, as it was my first attempt. So, with my caddy filled with my essentials for doing hair, here’s our result …

  1. Pick up the hair half way and tie it. Tip: where you end the half way pony tail is where your top bun will be/end – so the higher the half pony tail is, the higher the bun will be and vise versa, the lower you do the pony tail, the lower the bun will be/sit. I personally love a good high bun! Then set that hair aside by clipping it or tying it out of the way. Tip: To keep the style smooth and sleek, alternate with spraying the hair with water and hairspray just a couple times before tying it.
  2. Have her put her head on her knees or place a pillow so she’s more comfortable. Taking the section of her hair that’s not tied and starting with the low back neck area hair, wet and brush the hair smooth and begin your French braid or if you prefer, being a Dutch braid – keep it as loose or tight as you’d like, I kept it a little tight.
  3. Continue the French braid, brush through the strands if you can to keep the hair smooth. Once you’ve reached the other pony tail, grab both pony tails and tie them together.
  4. With the hair that was left on the pony tail, wet and brush the hair smooth and then do a simple braid and tie at the end with an elastic.
  5. Now just wrap the braid for in a bun, spray some hairspray to keep fly aways in place.
  6. If you’d like, finish the style with a hair bow and there you have an ‘upside down French braid with a braided bun.’

Have a great weekend!

A-

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Hard Mom Days: A Kindhearted Woman Gains Respect

Hard Mom Days: A Kindhearted Woman Gains Respect

The topic of motherhood can be a bit of a free for all – some think that either you’re doing too little or not enough and their need to give unsolicited advice to tell you what you should be doing with your children. This is why, I always choose to hold opinions of others to myself. As I myself run on survival mode.

So, I’ll begin by telling you how exhausted I am, how physically draining I feel, how sleepy I feel – that sleep that has you not being able to choose whether to eat or sleep and you choose to sleep, how hungry I feel to have maybe 5 minutes to myself! Not to go out, but rather have 5 minutes without the door to my bedroom or bathroom – because you know you can’t lock the door there, continuously opening with little voices asking where my ‘X’ toy is, where my ‘X’ shoe is, where my green ‘X’ shirt is and the list goes on! Yes I am grateful for the little ones, yes I feel overwhelmingly blessed to have them, yes I know they’re growing up, yes they will grow and leave my home. Yes, yes, yes! But give me a minute to let this out! Give me a moment without judgment! It’s OK as a mom to say, I need a break – and not only on Mother’s Day, a breather, a shower, a time to do my hair, a time to eat without sharing – is that being selfish? And a time for rest!

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What a week it’s been!! I have a house full of sick kids – and I won’t remind you how many there are, because the school going children tend to bring home all the germs they can gather and then spread them to the little ones. You know, that snowball effect?! And the only not-so sick child I had, today woke up throwing up. Welcome to motherhood! The land of the unknown, where anything can happen and where all things change at any given moment. Also, where your title as mom can quickly shift from mom to nurse to lullaby singer to clean up crew person of projectile things that come out of little ones mouth to sleep rocker of sick children, just name a few. And then just like that, it’s 4 am. I am so thankful that on most days, I can gather enough strength and not take out my chronic physical pain onto the children. We mothers can do that so quickly – especially when we are exhausted and running on no sleep. If I feel overwhelmed with the children, I give myself a time out. I take this time – be it 5 minutes or 2, to practice my breathing, gather and center myself. Because as mother’s we choose which road to take with each particular child of ours. The impatient child – that can test our own patience, the not-so still child, the loud child to the one that never seems to stop the crying.

‘A kindhearted woman gains respect’ from Proverbs 11:16 is such an encouraging scripture, it serves as a reminder how yelling and anything other than showing respect to the little ones is not a solution to solving a chaotic situation. Because when I’m tired, when I haven’t had the time to eat and had very little sleep, I can get mean, fast. The voice gets higher and I get snappy. So, this is a beautiful reminder to be kind and from my kindness the children will respond kindly in return. It’s so refreshing to know that in any ‘hard’ mom day, through your actions as a mom, you will gain your children’s respect.

‘As one whom his mother comforts, so I will comfort you.’ – Isaiah 66:13 I often think that I am giving my all, to my children to my home to my spouse and at times ask, what about me, where do I stand, who comforts me?! Because as a mother, I comfort my little ones, at homework time – encouraging them, when they fall – healing them, when they can’t sleep – comforting them and when they feel scared – loving them. I say them because it makes me feel less of a priority and feel myself being pushed more and more to the far back of the line. However, this verse reminds me that I am a priority, that I am loved and that I am comforted by the most faithful of them all. With this He reminds me that as I comfort my child, He also comforts me – and you.

Hope you’ve had a wonderful Sunday.

A-

Nail File Friday’s: Essie Spring 2018 Collection – Blue Shade

Just recently in the mood for a dark blue nail shade, I found this Anchor Down from Essie. It has a little bit of a gray undertone but it’s the perfect blue shade I’ve found yet! This ‘Anchor Down’ is one of six nail shades that are part of the Essie Spring 2018 Collection. If you are interested in four of their collection try this Essie Spring 2018 Collection – Minis set, it will include ‘Anchor Down.’ They went for a Nautical Theme for this Collection and this blue shade is one to try!

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Happy Friday!

A-

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Easy 5 Days of School Braids On Pony Tails

Easy 5 Days of School Braids On Pony Tails

My oldest daughter has long hair and one thing that we have found is that physical education/PE days can be a bit of a challenge. She doesn’t like her hair down on these days because – understandably, she finds that it gets in her face and in the way – a lot! So, we have found that the best solution to this problem is to keep her hair up in a pony tail on these particular days.

What’s in my hair bin organizer?:

Clear Bin Product Organizer  or Storage Caddy with Handle – Any of these will help. I have something similar to the clear bin, it’s essential that the kids hair products are ALL in ONE place. It makes getting hair done for school so easy!

Paddle Brush

Rattail Hair Comb – Great for prepping hair into sections for braiding

Ouchless Elastic – No metal and Particularly great for thick hair

Strong + Small Clear Elastic  – Clear are just my personal preference for elastics

Johnson’s Detangling Spray – Works and smells great

Tresemme Extra Hold Hair Spray  – Tried just about every brand! Tresemme will NOT leave white flakes by the end of the school day

Spray Water Bottle – Alternate between spraying the hair with water and hair spray – a few times, will ensure an all day great school hair day. Works great with my boys too!

Baby Magic Mennen Cologne – After hair is done, I’ll put this on. It smells so good on kids – my favorite!

° Tip: After you have picked up the hair with the ouchless elastic, wet the remaining hair to prepare for braiding

Day 1 is a 4 braid pony tail, continue to divide the hair as you braid each section – not all at once and tie each as you end it with a clear elastic. Day 2 is the rope twist braid, with the rattail comb section the hair in two, begin to twist both sections to your right, continue to twist both sections to the right as you work your way on down, you can do this as tight or loose as you want. Third Image now even though this is the bubble braid – it’s so incredibly easy, that I won’t count it in my ‘5 days of school braids.’ To begin, leaving a few inches from the top, tie with an elastic and pull the hair slowly to create a bubble shape and just continue to work your way down.

Day 3 is the 3 faux fishtail braid, like the bubble braid, simple section a few inches from the top, tie with an elastic, now section the hair in two and pull the bottom remaining hair towards you and into the hole. This will give the ‘faux fishtail’ look, just continue to do this to the remaining hair.

Day 4 is the 3 in 1 braid, from the top I did the fishtail braid, simply section the hair in two and pick up hair from the outside in – pick up the same amount on both sides, put it on the opposite side working your way down – tighten the hair as you go and tie it with an elastic. Now the middle will be the rope twist braid, spray the hair with water, section the hair in two and twist both sections to the right and tie with an elastic. And the bottom is the three strand ‘regular’ braid, tie at the end.

Day 5 is the fine braid with 1 fine strand. This is just like the ‘regular’ braid, but instead of separating the hair in 3 equal parts, you’re only going to separate in 2 equal parts – leaving one thin side, not pulling on the hair tight, continue to do a ‘regular’ braid as you normally would. Now slowly pull on the thicker sections of hair to make the braid appear ‘fluffier’ or ‘thicker’ pull on the strands as much or as little as you’d like and tie at the end with an elastic. Tip: for easier pulling, finish the hair, tie at the end with an elastic and then slowly pull the thicker strands.

Happy week / school week to all!

A-

 

Photo: Celia Ortega

When Mother’s Day is Especially Hard

When Mother’s Day is Especially Hard

While Mother’s Day is a wonderful reminder for some that we’ve been blessed to be mother’s, I know that there are some that find Mother’s Day especially hard – for both men and women. This day is a bitter sweet reminder to many for many reasons. Perhaps you don’t live close to mom, you’ve lost your mom or have never met your biological mother due to adoption, or you’re a mother of an angel, experienced the loss of a son or daughter or both, or you’re not a mother but have longed to be one for so long. Whichever the case may be and your reasons you find this day particularly hard, my prayers are with you. I remember that the struggles I see, the never ending loads of toys, the tiny screams I hear, the tiny hugs I feel are not experienced by many – and are a blessing rather than a burden.

Today I not only embrace my Mother’s Day with my little ones, I keep in my heart those women who are having a hard time coping with today.

Happy Mother’s Day – Feliz dia de las Madres

Have a beautiful and blessed day.

A-

Photo: Kelly Sikkema

Nail File Friday’s: Essie Nail Polish + Great Glitter Polish Tip

This week I kept it all the same, all week, I know! :: insert shocked emoji:: The little ones school year is coming to an end soon and I’ve been rather busy with that. Also, I’ve enjoyed a little early Mother’s Day breakfast yesterday morning with my Kindergartner. How excited do your little one’s get when you visit them inside their classrooms?! Children are so precious!

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If this is your first ‘Nail File Friday’s’ with me, welcome! Please visit here to find my personal all-time favorite nail polishes. Also, nail tools to find my favorite tools to keep at home for an at-home manicure. This is a rather simple yet beautiful nail polish idea!

First apply your base coat – the base coat will protect your nails from turning yellow, paint your nails one color, here you see the Essie, Wicked in the dark shade and the Essie, Chinchilly in the gray shade for the ring finger. It’s to your own personal liking, but after you’ve applied your nail polish, apply some colored glitter on top of the ring finger and thumb.

Here’s a tip for the glitter: if you have a hard time getting the glitter on your nail – you know, getting more clear than actual glitter! Do this: Apply the glitter nail polish on a foam wedge or makeup sponge and dab it on your nail, repeat this until you’ve achieved the glitter look you want – the sponge will absorb the clear polish – leaving you with JUST the glitter. Easy right?! Lastly, apply the top coat to all to seal the nail polish and give them great shine.

Have a Blessed Friday!

A-

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Blogging 101 – Tips For The First Time Blogger 2018

Blogging 101 – Tips For The First Time Blogger 2018

I am a … first time blogger – phew, there I’ve said it!

And just like that, feelings of intimidation, embarrassment, guessing, second and triple  guessing, confusion, at times frustration, semi mental breakdowns, etc. come rushing all at once.

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I’d love to pick your brain, let me know your most helpful tip(s) for first time bloggers such as myself. The sort of, Blogging 101, Must Know’s or Tips For First Time Bloggers 2018 Edition.

I’ll take any helpful tip(s), big or small, such as how to come up with a name for your blog, how often should you blog, what topics to choose for posts, what is a post, how to create an award, how to create a tag, how to respond to both an award and a tag, what works, what doesn’t. The things that have helped you in your own blogging journey.

As for myself, I’ve been using this one since day one in my short time blogging  …

My most helpful tip(s) for you: Two words, Blogging Journal‘ … yes! I am still a good ‘ole paper and pencil kind of gal and with so much going on, my ‘Blogging Journal’ has come to alleviate some stress. I keep it on my desk with a pencil/pen and a highlighter – sorry kids, I’ll give it back, maybe! I’ll write down ideas throughout the day as they come, half of the time it’s not in the neatest handwriting, but it works!

My second tip: In your ‘Blogging Journal,’ make/label sections using tabs/sticky notes, write down all your online useful website sources, along with any user names and passwords you’ve created related to your blog, I’ve collected a few already and this has been a huge help!

Please leave your most helpful tip(s) in the comments and include your blog, so others can follow along your journey with you!

Happy Thursday!

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Photo: Jan Kahánek