We Got the FUNK

Monday, December 5, 2016

I'm Not There Yet. #Depression #Anxiety

This past week in Colorado a tragedy struck a family that hit close to home.  I did not know the family personally, but I feel like I know the struggle that mom was dealing with.  Now before anyone freaks out, I am NOT anywhere near the point of grabbing a gun and taking anyone's life, especially my own children's.  However, depression is a real issue and one that our family has been dealing with for most of 2016.



In August, I told you all how I was starting medication to address my depression and anxiety issues. I think I had known that I was struggling for a while but I just tallied that up to the large amount of stress I had put on myself from working 40+ hours a week teaching, then doing graduate school full time on top of that, while raising two kids, running this blog and trying to help my husband cope with most of his family dying.

I was getting up, I was existing, I was functioning and from an outsiders point of view, I had my life together.  I just graduated with my master's degree while balancing an insane schedule.  My kids are healthy, I own a house and cars and can afford the unnecessary items in life.  However, my husband was not healthy.  He was battling the deepest depression imaginable.  It is almost scary to look back and wonder how in the hell I missed the warning signs and how on Earth he managed to pull himself back together amazes me.  He gives me hope, so much hope.  A man that has lost both his parents (pretty tragically) and essentially most of his family in the last 8 years has been able to bring himself to a point where he genuinely feels happy again.  I want to be there.

I am not there yet.  I am not at the point where I hate my life, like I was in August, but I still have days where I just want to sleep and be left alone and where my anxiety gets the best of me.  I still feel like I am not good enough and I still struggle to keep appearances.  I am struggling to open up to my husband and to want to spend time with my kids and stay patient.

Last week I told my doctor this.  I told her that I feel like I am losing my patience easier with my children in particular and that I am not as engaged with them as I would like to be.  I hardly cook anymore, I am still not managing my diabetes as well as I could be (although I am finally taking my medications).  I am struggling to connect with my husband and I hardly talk with my friends.

I am not there yet.  My husband gives me hope, so much hope.  Seeing him get through what he has been through gives me hope and right now, that is what I hold onto.  I keep taking the meds, I keep trying, I keep talking, I keep going.  My life and family mean more to me than anything and I have to keep going.

Thank you to everyone for your support and kind words, keep them coming.  I need them to get through this.


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Friday, December 2, 2016

Little Bit of Happiness: Student of the Trimester!!!

Right before we went on Thanksgiving break we were told that our little guy was getting the Student of the Trimester award for citizenship the last day of school.  The husband got up early and took our kiddo to school, none of us had mentioned that he was receiving this award and he was super excited when his name was called!


It has been a very rough year for our family and the beginning of the school year was a harder transition than normal.  We were fearful that some of the adjustments in our own home were affecting his schooling.  Thankfully, he has worked through those adjustments and his positive changes are being recognized.  We are so proud of our kiddo for representing himself as a positive, friendly, helpful and loving person that his classmates and teachers look up to. 

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Thursday, December 1, 2016

Disney on Ice #Colorado #PromoCode #ad

Growing up, my grandma made sure to do one thing every December and March with my sister and I and sometimes our cousins.  She would take us to Disney on Ice.  For most of my childhood, I never missed a show.  Even if no one else could go, grandma and I would always go.


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As I got older, I would take grandma to the shows.  It was our thing.  The love of the stories, the beautiful ice dancing and amazing tricks were just something her and I loved.  When my first was born, my sister won tickets to a show and so we picked up grandma and took my boy to his first show too.  Since my kids have been born we have never missed a show.  When grandma passed away almost 3 years ago right before the March show, my sister and I had a hard time deciding if would would carry on that tradition.  However, we decided to go and there was some closure there.


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It is no surprise that one of my dream companies to work with is Disney on Ice.  I finally decided to reach out and was elated when they responded to my emails.  I told them the story of our family traditions and the importance of Disney On Ice and they were excited for me to share our love with my readers as well as some special offers!  This year Disney On Ice is presenting "Worlds of Enchantment"at the Pepsi Center in Denver.


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If you are on interested in going, rev up for non-stop fun with four of your favorite Disney stories when Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Enchantment comes to your hometown!  This one-of-a-kind production visits Denver from December 8 – 11, 2016 for eight performances at Pepsi Center. Tickets are on sale now!   

Get ready to enter a dazzling world of Disney magic, live on ice where Lightning McQueen, Mater and the crew of DisneyPixar’s Cars perform high-speed stunts and race across the ice like you’ve never seen before!  Be amazed and join Ariel as she dives into the underwater kingdom of Disney’s The Little Mermaid.  Buzz Lightyear, Woody, Jessie and other favorites from the Toy Story gang as they try and escape from Sunnyside Daycare in one of their most daring adventure ever from DisneyPixar’s Toy Story 3 – proving that the toys are back in town! Plus, enter the wintery world of Arendelle with sisters Anna and Elsa from the BAFTA and Academy Award® winning and number one animated feature film of all time, Disney’s Frozen. Join Anna as she embarks on an epic journey with the hilarious snowman Olaf and rugged mountain-man Kristoff to find her sister, the magical Elsa, whose icy powers have trapped the kingdom of Arendelle in eternal winter.  

From wheels to waves, icy wonderlands to infinity and beyond, see some of your family’s favorite Disney moments come to life at Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Enchantment.

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We are so incredibly excited to go!  I asked my kids about it yesterday and their reactions were "Can we go now!"  If you would like more information the performance times and ticketing information and the Colorado Discount code is below.  I highly recommend making a family date and going.  These performances bring magic into everyone's spirits and watching everyone's faces light up as they see their favorite characters come to life!

Performance Schedule: 
Thursday, December 87:00 PM
Friday, December 911:00 AM7:00 PM
Saturday, December 1011:00 AM3:00 PM7:00 PM
Sunday, December 111:00 PM5:00 PM

Ticket Information: 
Disney On Ice presents Worlds of Enchantment will be performing in Denver at Pepsi Center Thursday, December 8 – Sunday, December 11, 2016. Tickets start at just $15! (Additional fees apply. Excludes Front Row and VIP seats) All seats are reserved, and tickets are available at www.disneyonice.com.
To learn more about Disney On Ice, produced by Feld Entertainment, visit www.disneyonice.com, or visit us on Facebook and YouTube.

Discount Code Information: 
Use promo code WORLD to save $5 per ticket. (Not valid on VIP or Front Row seats. Not valid day of show. No double discounts. Service charges, facility, and handling fees may apply.) 

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Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Breakfast with Santa & The Rusty Bucket

Hey Colorado!

I jut got a great offer in my inbox that I had to share.  The Rusty Bucket is hosting a breakfast with Santa on Saturday December 10th from 8:30-10:00 AM.  The cost is just $5.00 per person with a portion of the proceeds being donated to toys for tots.

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Visitors will enjoy a spectacular breakfast of scrambled eggs, bacon, toast and coffee, juice or milk, while Santa visits each table for photo opportunities (bring a camera to capture these wonderful moments).

The location is at The Rusty Bucket in Westminster (14643 Orchard Parkway, Westminster, CO 80023)  and seating is limited so it is highly encouraged for you to call ahead and reserve your families place (303-457-6819).  The little ones are going to love it and you will LOVE the food.  The family and I were just there last week and my kids ate their entire meal and that is unheard of and my husbands and my food was amazing.

In addition, guests are also encouraged to bring new or used coats to benefit the salvation army for their annual coat drive.

For fun, The Rusty Bucket is offering one of my local readers a $25.00 gift card.  All you need to do is leave a comment telling me what you want for Christmas!  I will randomly draw one winner and post the winner on this post on Friday!


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Monday, November 28, 2016

Active Dressy Clothes for Anyone #MileHighPrAna #sponsored

Disclosure: prAna provided me with these clothes, but all opinions are my own. 

Do you have people on your gift list that are into sustainability, live for organic materials and want to decrease their carbon footprint?  Then you should definitely check out prAna!

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Thanksgiving has came and went and with that comes the shopping season.  I am always so good about getting gifts for the little people on our list, but when it comes to making my own list or finding gifts for my immediate family, I always struggle a lot.  Thankfully, I have a better idea what to get some family members after being introduced to prAna.

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prAna clothing is mindfully made to support fair trade and sustainable practices.  Their goal is to give back more than they take from the world and they are doing a fantastic job.  Utilizing organic cotton that is free of herbicides, pesticides and GMO's as well as hemp products, they are reaching that goal and making the world a better place.

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I decided to put prAna to the test during one of the busiest holidays for our family.  Thanksgiving.  I wanted to get a lot of people's opinions and see how well these clothes held up while we roller skated, ate enormous amounts of food and played with the little kids.  prAna boasts that the clothes are versatile for any lifestyle and any adventure.  Our Thanksgiving is always full of adventures so I went for it.

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When the clothing pieces arrived they were packaged very nicely and wrapped in twine with the tags made out of recycled materials as well.  I had ordered the Stacia sweater in charcoal and the Kara Jeans in sun-washed red.  The colors were vibrant and the material was strong but soft.  The pants were very long and are meant to be cuffed, but look great with boots or flats.  They are low rise and fit well.  I was hoping they would have a little stretch and give to the material and there was some for sure.
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The vibrant red was really a great addition to my low key outfit and with all the activities we did that day and the amount of food we ate, I am very happy with how comfy these were.  They were not binding, the material loosened up a bit as we got more active and even after 12 hours of roller skating, eating and horsing around, they looked great!  The charcoal sweater is a new favorite of mine.  It is very soft and the design on the front is subtle but dresses up the shirt nicely.  I was worried about being to hot, but actually I was perfect all day.  In all, I really liked the look and feel of the clothing and my family had a lot of great things to compliment me on about prAna too!

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I love that these clothes are made with sustainability in mind and as a biology teacher, ensuring that our world is taken care of is very important.  prAna clothing lives up to their goals, their vision and their promises; making clothing for active lifestyles that is not harmful to the environment.  

If you are interested in checking our prAna, you can head to their website now and use the promo code MHMF16AFU for 15% off at checkout.  You can also check them out on Facebook.  There is something for everyone so make sure to snag your 15% off before December 19th!

What do you think about prAna?

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Friday, November 25, 2016

A Gift for Everyone with Powder & Jade #Giveaway #DiscountCode #sp

Disclosure: I was provided with 2 beautiful necklaces in exchange for my honest review. 

A couple weeks ago I was contacted by this local Colorado company to take a peek at their Etsy store and I was completely blown away.  Powder & Jade Jewelry offers personalized jewelry for every person in your life and the quality is fantastic too!

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Today is the busiest commercial shopping day of the year, but while everyone is out frequenting those retailers, I was warm and cozy in my bed, sleeping off my turkey coma so that I could shop for the holidays with the small business and online retailers that I adore.  Powder & Jade is now added to that list and I cannot wait to show you all why!

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When the jewelry boxes arrived at my house the packaging immediately caught my eye.  They were personalized with my name on then and wrapped with twine.  Opening them up revealed the stunning customized jewelry with a note inscribed inside that can be personalized with anything they customer would like.  It was fun to see what the inscriptions on my boxes would be.

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The first box I opened was this teacher appreciation necklace.  I thought it was the most beautiful sentiment to send me a necklace and thank me for my passion.  The inscription inside the box read "It takes a big heart to teach little minds", and features a heart with a pearl.  Pearls are an absolute favorite of mine.  There is something so beautiful about them and so perfect about their imperfections that I just adore.  I love this necklace and decided to wear it for Thanksgiving as a reminder of just one of the many things I am thankful for; my students.

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I love gold jewelry and the length and lightness of this chain was just perfect for me.  You can tell how much work went into making this handmade piece and how sturdy the jewelry is.  I received a lot of compliments from family yesterday on this necklace and questions about where I got it!

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The second necklace I received was this monogrammed gold bar necklace.  This company really knows me, I swear because I love monograms!  I am not fond of the full name monograms but a simple letter monogram like this is exactly me.  I have several silver necklaces with an "L" on them that I wear often but this is my first gold one and I LOVE IT.  The inscription on this box is aimed towards a best friend with the sentiment "Thanks for being my unbiological sister".


Hand-stamped and beautifully constructed this necklace is so versatile and would be a great gift for anyone in your life. If you are looking for personalized gifts, you have to check out Powder & Jade. There is a gift for everyone.  Luckily, Powder & Jade agrees and wants to offer my readers a special Cyber Tuesday code!  If you shop on Tuesday and enter the code "CYBER2016" you will get FREE SHIPPING!  I have a few gifts picked out for my mom and sister already and a couple special teachers in our lives and will be using that code on Tuesday for sure!

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Want a little background on Powder and Jade?  Well it was created in 2013 by a husband and wife team, Auri and Andrew Penner.  Auri started making jewelry as a hobby while in college and since they both knew they wanted to start their own business someday, they decided to try selling Auri's jewelry creations on Etsy.  Almost four years later their shop, Powder & Jade is now a beloved shop on Etsy, featuring simple, feminine designs packaged with personalized note messages.  Auri and Andrew have since opened 3 other Etsy jewelry shops: For the Maids (specializing in bridesmaid jewelry), Penner Pearls and Burnt Honey Jewelry (bridesmaid jewelry for everyday wear). Everything they create is beautiful. 

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Do you want to check out everything that Powder & Jade has to offer?  Well you are in luck because they are offering one of my amazing readers a monogrammed bar necklace with your choice of personalization for free!  Just enter the giveaway form below!



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Thursday, November 24, 2016

Colorado Ballet Presents The Nutcracker Tickets on Sale NOW!

In just a couple weeks, we will be taking our seats for one of my favorite events of the holiday season!  The Nutcracker presented by the Colorado Ballet.  We had a great time last year and are so excited for this years presentation.

Artists of Colorado Ballet - photos by Mike Watson 

This year it will only be myself and my little peanut girl and I hope to make this a tradition for her and I.  If you are anything like our family you also love to create traditions and The Nutcracker is a great one to start with your family.


Following the classic story, the beautiful costumes, amazing dancing and fantastic performance will not disappoint.  This year I am most excited to have a some one on one time with my girl and to see her little face light up as the Colorado Ballet showcases the beauty of this story.


With the holiday season kicking off, you must get your hands on tickets for The Nutcracker.  You can purchase them here and I promise you will truly love it! Create those traditions and enjoy time with your family. You can also enter the discount code "SNOW" at checkout for 15% off your tickets!

Are you planning on going to see The Nutcracker?

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Wednesday, November 23, 2016

Helping My Favorite New Mommy Out #WhatULuv #ad

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

Twelve weeks ago, one of the best birthday gifts entered our lives and I never knew I could love someone else's child nearly the same as I love my own.  Becoming an aunt has been an amazing and beautiful time in my life and in my sisters.  However, we all remember being a new mom, losing a bit of ourselves and being overwhelmed with the amount of care a newborn needs. That is why I decided early on to be there to help my sister whenever she just needs a moment to take care of herself.

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When I had my first son, I was very sick from having him and my health was touch and go. Thankfully, I had my mom and sister to help me out with our oldest while I recovered.  Paying that forward has been very important to me.  So when my sister calls to see if I can babysit so she can take a shower or if I want to snuggle him while she gets some housework or errands done, I jump at it.

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Of course, every mom has their preferred way of taking care of their sweet babies needs and in my sister's case, she is particular about the diapers and food that her little guy uses.  Luvs diapers are her go to brand.  They are priced great, fit well and with NightLock Plus™ they are softer and more absorbent then ever.

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My mom used Luvs with us growing up and I used them with my kids when they were smaller and now my sister is using them with my nephew.  In addition, she is nursing him and has him on a great sleep schedule.  She really is doing amazing as a new mom and I am so proud of her.

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He is such a happy baby and a chunk at almost 3 months old that he makes babysitting so easy.  My kids love spending time with their little cousin, playing, and showing him things and trying to make him smile.  He is always content to just be a naked baby and play on the floor.

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He is learning to roll over and is getting great head control and trying to reach for things.  My daughter placed this package of Luvs diapers in front of him and he was absolutely fascinated with the colors and baby on the packaging.  He kept trying to reach for the packaging and was super cute to watch his little concentration faces.

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It gives me so much joy and pleasure to watch this little guy grow up and watch my sister as a new mom.  I tell her thank you all the time for bringing such a beautiful blessing into our lives and am always in awe of how good of a mommy this woman is.  I am glad that I can be there for her through this new phase in her life and give her the time-out she needs to take care of her needs too. 

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Our mom and my sister have always been great about giving me a time-out and insuring that I was taking care of myself. I remember our oldest being about 2 weeks old and my mom asking me when I had eaten and slept last and I told her I didn't remember at all.  She snatched my little newborn up, put me to bed and made me some breakfast.  I think I slept all of an hour but it was the most amazing sleep I had ever had and it was awesome to have that help.  However, examining the infographic above you can see that many moms are not taking the time for themselves.



Most new moms are busy, and from one of my favorite commercials you can see that new moms spend more time worrying about having it all right and fighting through exhaustion, then taking care of themselves.  By the second child though, we are typically much better and ready to take on the world. 

Luvs is on a mission to celebrate and embrace what parents value and "Luv".  @Luvs and @iConnect are hosting a #WhatULuv twitter party on November 29th from 9-10pm EST to have parents share what they "Luv" with amazing prizes ranging from spa gift cards to restaurants gift cards and even an AMEX gift card with a value of $300.00 for parents to take care of their own needs too!  Make sure to RSVP here!

In addition, you can snag a $1.00 off coupon for a package of Luvs diapers from coupons.com and AMEX is also giving one of my readers a $25.00 gift card and a package of the new Luvs NightLock Plus™ diapers, for a lucky person to make sure that they take their own time-out!  Enter below for your chance to win!



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Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Christmas Cards & Art Selections with Minted

The holiday season is finally here!  Lights are being put up in our neighborhood (ours wont go up until this weekend), and everyone is prepping for their celebrations.  One of my favorite parts of the holidays is sending our Christmas cards.  I decided to do something a bit different this year and use Minted for my cards and I am so happy I did.  The process has been so easy and the cards are amazing quality.

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I am a huge fan of photo cards for holiday cards and I always like to include our family photos on them along with our pups.  I first chose some of our family's favorite photos and then jumped on Minted's website to pick some designs.  The site was amazingly easy to use and uploading pictures was simple.

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I loved that I could place the photos directly into the cards, personalize them, make adjustments to my photos (crop, move) and then preview the cards to see which ones looked best for us.  I had such a hard time choosing the card options that I wanted to use because their selection is large and amazing.

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One of the features that I really loved was that I could choose the card size, various colors, the font, if I wanted them to have foil pressed on them, and even personalize the envelopes!  Minted also offered to have the envelopes addressed, which I thought was just awesome.  If I would have had the time, I would have imported all 100 addresses (yes, I send out a lot of cards).  I know that I will be working on this throughout the year so that next year my cards will come ready to send out!  So many great features on the Minted site.

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As I was checking out, Minted had a little promotion about their gift-able art.  I definitely clicked and took a peek and designed a few items for our home that I will be sharing with the husband as a huge hint to my Christmas list.  They are going to be so beautiful and I just love that you can pick out the frame and everything!

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Minted nailed it with the art and I am in love with all their options! If you love what you have seen or you want to try out Minted for yourself, please ENTER THE GIVEAWAY at the link below for a chance at a $100 credit.  This contest is open to U.S. residents and runs until November 29, 2016 at midnight!


GIVEAWAY


3 lucky readers will win a $100 credit to Minted.  Just put your name and email address in to enter at the link below.

>>>ENTER HERE<<<

Good Luck!

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Monday, November 21, 2016

FREE 12x8 Canvas Print

I'm very happy to present you this awesome deal! I am getting a free 12x8" canvas print and I am allowed to share this with you!

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FREE 12x8 Canvas Print! - All you need to do is to click the website link http://www.canvasonsale.com/congrats/ , upload your favorite picture, choose 12x8" canvas and enter the voucher code from the website in the basket Keep it for yourself or present it to your loved ones. 


Once you have ordered your free canvas you can share this with your friends anywhere in the web, so they also get a free canvas print. FREE 12x8 Canvas Print! The AMAZING FREE CANVAS FOR AMERICA CAMPAIGN. 

I am ordering mine this week and cannot wait to review them for you soon!

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