Friday Favs

Friday Favs- a spot where I share my favorite products, apps, sites, articles, and moments from the week.

It’s Super Bowl weekend! Do you have your menu planned? Here is my go-to recipe for Super Bowl parties- Blue Cheese Chicken Wing Dip.

Have you ever done an insta-challenge? Me neither but I thought it might be something fun to get through my least favorite month of the year. I’m jumping in with #3 today.

feb-photo-prompts

This recipe for a Kale Salad. Disclaimer- I’m the only one who liked it (but I swear it’s good!) so go into it with realistic expectations. It’s KALE. Good for you for lunch; don’t try to serve to your kids and your hubby for dinner like I did.

Three Simple Ways to Raise Great Kids. A short article with great reminders. My favorite is number 2.

img_7455

Are you a critical thinker? Would you like to raise one? I love these questions to get us all thinking!

Advertisements

Remember Your Child As They Are Right Now- Birthday Letters

child-918582_960_720

Maybe I put it off because I knew I would cry. And I did. Three times.

I came across the idea of a birthday letter awhile back. Each year, around your child’s birthday, you write him or her a letter about their year. You talk about their successes and challenges, their interests and special times you shared. It’s basically a snapshot of your child at that particular age. Then, whenever you see fit (maybe after college or when they themselves become parents) you give them all the letters.

I finally sat down to write three birthday letters- Raina at 16, Shaye at 12, and Juliette at 1. The letters to the older girls weren’t easy to write and filled with major emotion. These girls are walking the line between childhood, teen years, and adulthood on a daily basis. I somehow managed to capture both how great the girls are as well as what a trying time adolescence is.

This is where the crying starts 😉

Think of your child now at whatever age they are. They will never be the same again. They are growing and changing each day and the joys and stresses of today slowly fade into the joys and stresses of tomorrow. By next year, what will you remember about the child your child is today?

Below I’m sharing my letter to the baby. If you choose to write a letter to your child, I promise you won’t regret it!

Birthday Letter- Juliette, age 1

Dear Juliette,

What an amazing year it’s been, my precious Juliette! I prayed for a healthy, happy baby who sleeps well and that’s exactly what I got. You are by far the most enjoyable, easy baby and every day spent with you is a treat. Your doll-like face and beautiful curls gets attention everywhere we go and you give your smiles away freely to all we meet. You are truly a ray of sunshine!

You are adored by everyone. I can’t tell who’s eyes light up more when you and your dad see each other. He greets you with a “Whattttt Uppppp, Kiddddd?!” and you throw your arms up and shine like the sun. Your sisters rush to your side first thing in the mornings and as soon as they get home from school. Your brothers love to spend time with you and you get a kick out of finding them in your “Everyone Loves Juliette” family book. We wish you grandmothers, grandfather, aunts, uncles, and cousins all lived closer but we look at their pictures every day and cherish the time we get to spend with them.

Some of your first loves were the book “Chicka Chicka Boom Boom” and your stuffed panda we call Dan. We could always make you smile by singing “Hello to Juliette, it’s so nice to see you” from your first music class. You enjoy eating everything; there hasn’t been a food we’ve introduced that you haven’t liked.

I will hold in my heart the way the small hairs on your head made a spiral when you were first born. The open smile you would give when you were really happy. Sleep position- how you would nuzzle into me when you were trying to fall asleep.

Soon after you were born, your sister remarked, “how do we love her so much when we don’t even know her?” And there it is, simply stated. You were born and our hearts were filled with more love than we knew was possible simply because you are you. Happy first birthday!

 

 

 

What’s your MISSION?

A Mission Statement

 In most businesses and schools, a mission statement is developed to help ensure that everyone is focused on a uniform goal. It’s always been my belief that if we don’t know what we’re working towards, we’re standing still. I’m a mover and shaker so standing still isn’t my thing.

After becoming a stay-at-home mom three years ago, I struggled a lot with my purpose. Now by purpose, I certainly do not mean the day-to-day to-do lists that fill all of our lives. Go grocery shopping. Drop off dry cleaning. Get a car wash. Ughhhhh. Yes, these things have to get done but they definitely do not provide anyone with a sense of true accomplishment. I was looking for more. I felt I was blessed to have this time with my children but wanted to have a clear understanding of my goals related to myself and my family. Hence, the idea of drafting my personal mission statement.

Now, what goes into your personal mission state is, you guessed it, personal but I’ll share mine with you.

Mission Statement

To nurture myself, my husband, my children, and my pets with wholesome food, kind words and positive energy. To contribute to my children’s schools and my community with my own unique gifts. To be the woman I want my daughters to be~ active, educated, and cultured. To continue to read, learn, grow and be reflective and to surround myself with positive people who share the same goals.

I took this mission, typed it up and printed it and put it in a pretty frame. It now sits on my desk where I look at it often.

IMG_1940

 

It’s always a good idea to have a clear focus on what you’re working toward, especially within in your home. Have a lovely day!

xo,

Tanya

If you only do one thing the week…get married! (Well, that’s my plan anyway!)

The time has flown by. It’s been a little over two and a half years since the man of my dreams walked into my life. As a 31-year-old divorcee with two children, my path hadn’t been as easy one but I remained positive and hopeful, choosing to focus on living a life of intention. When I was introduced to B, I was immediately taken by his two sides- his driven, successful, responsible side contrasting with his silly, outrageous and fun side (anyone who knows me well knows my two sides are quite polar as well). He was divorced. He had two kids. He had similar interests. Check, check, check! He also lived in New York. Hmmmmm…

In hindsight, I think this was a huge check. I had often felt suffocated in relationships. Only getting to see him every other week (initially) was a great thing for me. It forced me to confront feelings that I may have over wise overlooked. I missed him. I wanted to see him more. I was in love with him.

After six months, B popped the question in his “go big or go home” way~ on stage at a Train concert to the song, Marry Me. It was surreal, much like everything else in the previous six months.

The girls and I moved to New York six months after we got engaged. The transition wasn’t as easy for me as I had hoped but he was right by my side every step of the way. He’s been my everything for the last year and a half- my family, my best friend, my lover, and sometimes my punching bag.

We will get married tomorrow on the rooftop of 230 5th surrounded by our family and friends. All four of our beautiful children will walk in the wedding. The talented Courtney Ortiz will capture the moments, the one and only Chef Steve Martorano will be cooking his unbelievable South Philly Italian food (we met at one of his restaurants!), and Ron-Ben Israel  is preparing a magnificent cake. Finally, we’ve got the fabulous Louis XIV spinning all night. How lucky are we?!

I am aware of and appreciate my blessings each and every day. I feel so much gratitude that I have found an amazing partner to share my life with. So this week, if you only do one thing, believe in love!

xo,

TFab