Evenflo Meets Woodloch – Our Favorite Family Spot

We had the pleasure of partnering with Evenflo last week on a new car seat launch for the Evenflo Platinum Protection Series. We hit the roads and headed to The Poconos to Woodloch Resort for a family action-packed adventure weekend.

Having a car like this 7 seater suv is great for people who have a family. It has more than enough room for all of our family and our bags and anything we need when we go for a road trip. Without doubt, it has been one of our best purchases. And we got an amazing deal on it because we researched how much is my Honda worth before buying it, meaning we knew the current prices and best deals available. With this new car, it is incredibly easy to put a new car seat in. I would hate to have a small two-door car and have to somehow get my children in. It doesn’t really matter though, as I got my new car seat into my car with ease. As I buckled up my youngest daughter in her new Evenflo booster car seat, I took a moment to reflect upon how big my baby was getting. This new car seat had so many new features that her old car seat did not have, including buckle pockets. In fact, I always struggled with those metal buckles on warm summer days, and with how hot they can get. I constantly wondered to myself, why is there no place for these shiny hot buckles and then one day, she got burned. Summers in St Louis can be brutal, many days over 100 degrees. With one careless move, the buckles can burn a child or even an adult, which happened a few years ago. But now, this won’t happen again with her new car seat. Having great car insurance also gave us peace of mind when buckling in our child into the our car, knowing that if the worst were to happen then we would get support.

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All buckled up, we headed to The Poconos. Upon arriving at Woodloch, our children did not know where to run first. Was it to the Bumper Cars, or the Indoor Forest or Bingo or to play Family Feud? We started with dinner and reviewing the schedule of events. Woodloch is about bringing families together. This is through their many activities that include The Olympics, scavenger hunts, cake decorating, sports, swimming, hiking, tubing and staff shows all around amazing family meal time.

When I was first introduced to Woodloch a few years ago, I could not wait to go back. You get to see your family in a new light and see your children attempt new activities they might not try on a regular day. There is team building, competition and relaxation all nestled in a beautiful picturesque woodsy environment. Team building is not only for your family but for the workplace too. If you are able to build up and progress with your team then you will have a better outcome. You can conduct survey questions for employees satisfaction to add to your team building and see where things can be improved not only in the workplace but outside it too.

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I think we will be headed back as soon as we can, with our Evenflo car seat joining us, and it is a great feeling to know your children are not only safe, but extra comfortable for the car ride. Thank you to our amazing sponsor, Evenflo!

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Divorce Diaries: Top 12 List of Two Years of Separation

Wow, what a difference two years makes. Two years ago at this time, my husband and I decided to separate. If it wasn’t for a friend of ours recommending that we got in touch with a specialist divorce lawyer like PETERS MAY – SPECIALIST DIVORCE & FAMILY LAWYERS IN MAYFAIR, LONDON, I feel as if this divorce process would have went a completely different way. Even though it wasn’t the best time in my life, it was for the best. We were able to sort out our finances and other things that needed to be done. I, honestly, had no idea that divorce and Social Security were so intertwined. And while so many people stay together for various reasons, including for the sake of their kids, we decided to separate for the sake of our kids — among other things. And it’s the best thing I could have done. I encourage anyone who isn’t happy with their marriage and have tried everything to contact someone like Arnold Wadsworth & Coggins (http://arnoldwadsworth.com/salt-lake-city-divorce-attorney/) to help you with divorce proceedings.

Now, looking back on my first few pieces, and my first two years as a mom on my own, I’m going back in order to move forward and to hopefully help others just starting their journey.

So here’s my top 12 list after two years of separation.

1. I love living alone with my boys. Anything is possible once you are in a situation. So what might have seemed scary before, becomes perfectly routine — so much so that I can’t imagine it any other way.

2. I’m a better mom than I’ve ever been. No doubt. No question. I’m the mom in the pool now. And I can’t get out! I’ve been on two vacations to beaches, and I can’t wait to go back. I’m the mom on the ski slopes. I’m the mom doing the homework. I’m the mom shuttling my kids to playdates, classes and field trips all while working full time. I am actually a stay at home, full time working mom, and loving every minute of it.

3. I can do anything. You know when you complain that your spouse is traveling and it’s so hard because you have to do dinner, bath, homework and bedtime all alone? You know that rainy, snowy morning when you’re so glad your spouse can divide and conquer? You know when you don’t know how you’ll manage bedtime by yourself, or you’ve never traveled alone with your kids? I discovered I can do it all. And I do it happily. Even when there are emergencies and challenges along the way!

4. Friendships Do Change. Boy was I wrong. Or maybe just really hopeful. In my piece, “Reinventing Divorce,” I wrote to our friends.

To our friends who are shocked and sad, please don’t be.

We both deserve to be happy. We both deserve another chance. Our kids deserve to grow up in homes without tension, without arguments, without parents who are angry that they are still together.

We hope to learn from both of our divorced parents’ ways.

You won’t have to choose sides. You can continue with both of us.

And now, here’s what I’ve learned about friends and divorce. You can use a Divorce Lawyer Chicago to help you split up your belongings, decide who gets what and then discuss what happens with your kids. But what about friends? You leave with whom you came in with. Friendships that were made as a couple are the trickier ones. For the most part, people pick one person. Or one party tries harder with the relationships they care about the most. Other friends feel awkward and back away. Facebook keeps people tied together who otherwise wouldn’t stay in touch, or are on the “other side,” thus giving a false sense of remaining relations.

5. I also wrote, “Don’t Call Me A Single Mom.” I still support the point of the piece but stand corrected with the title until there is a better term that is universally recognized. While I’m thrilled to be “a single mom,” my kids do have a dad, BUT I am often in a position of being “a single mom.” I’m still thinking about this one.

And as far as the little things:

6. I love when my boys crawl in my bed in the middle of the night and I only have to answer to or judge myself.

7. I love giving my boys chocolate for breakfast as a treat and no one else has a say.

8. I can pay all of my bills (thanks to Chase for balancing for me!)

9. I can shop and no one cares what I come home with since I’m making my own money and report only to myself.

10. I can change lightbulbs but I’m still struggling with all of the remotes (it’s amazing I haven’t thrown them at the TV yet!)

11. I kill bugs without being squeamish.

12. I have mastered the system. I am happy, and I have a free babysitter when my kids are with their dad.

To view the article in the Huffington Post, click here.

Divorce Diaries: Do Parents on Their Own Need a Plus One?

I’m a mom who does everything with my kids. And not only do I do, I like to try new things. If I didn’t have a fear of flying I would want to sky dive (although, I have looked at CBD oil law and it looks like this could be an option for when I do have to next get on an airplane to help me calm down a little). We scoot all over town. We play hockey, ice skate, ski, go on windy water slides, water ski, and I never met a roller coaster with too many loops or drops.

Going through the divorce process has not changed this either. Unfortunately, sometimes relationships and civil partnerships come to a natural end. Things are not always simple though and there are lots of reasons why a couple might decide to get divorced. Most importantly, no matter what the circumstances, if you are going through a divorce, then it is vital that you seek legal advice from a team of family law experts such as Simon Law. Divorce law can be complex and therefore it is in your best interest to work with a legal professional to help you both to reach the best possible outcome.

In situations where the father is present and known to authorities, this tends to make issues of child support easier when a couple is no longer together. Although a divorce is a hard thing to go through, I’m still glad their father is not absent. In cases where fathers have left the scene, it can become difficult for single mothers to claim child support when raising their kids. In these situations, something like DNA testing in Detroit may be useful to definitively state who the father is in cases where the actual father is disputing his own paternity and running away from his legal duties to act in the child’s best interests. DNA tests do away with any doubt even in situations when the mother is not sure who the biological father is too. These can be used in evidence when legal action is taken to get him to take some financial responsibility. It’s not pleasant, but it can be necessary for preventing raising a child on a single salary, which is notoriously difficult – especially while simultaneously holding down a full-time job. I don’t envy mothers who have to go through this ordeal, but at least there are services out there to help them.

So as we drove in our rented Kia, for a long weekend getaway with friends, to Woodloch Pines in Pennsylvania, even the car ride out of Manhattan is an adventure for us city slickers. As a “mom on her own” any experience or any road trip with my kids is something I thrive on. I like to show them the world. There’s nothing better than seeing them try new things. When we arrived was no better news than being able to snow tube at night.

We were the first ones on the hill. After a few pictures to document our venture, my older son went first. He went fast and had a blast. Then another family started just off to the side. I then raced down with my little one on my lap. As we sailed up a hill and gained more speed it was the feeling I not only loved but I also felt the excitement in my son lying on top of me. But that didn’t last. Seconds later, we saw the other family in front of us. Just there. And then BOOM. We crashed at full speed right into them. Jaylan was crying, my head hurt. I was looking at my son to make sure he was ok and he wouldn’t stop crying. Then I heard the mom in front of me screaming, “We need medics. We need help. Get help.” And I wondered if she saw something on my son that I didn’t. So I started to yell, “We need help”. But it wasn’t until I put my hand to my head that I realized they needed help for me. There was blood everywhere. It was all over me, dripping down my face, covering the snow around me and all over my white jacket. At that moment all I could think about was who would take care of my boys? We were there alone. Our friends were arriving in about an hour. I worried that with all the blood I might pass out. What if I had a head injury?

I gave my phone to my almost 9-year-old son and asked to make sure he knew how to use it. At this point the other family used snowballs to ice my head. I didn’t know where all the blood was coming from or what was really wrong with me. Two medics arrived and I tried to get up, but after a single step, this mom who thinks she can do anything, knew that with one more step I might pass out. So I sat back in the snow while they put a neck brace on for precaution and tied me to a board. And I just kept talking to my boys. I needed to see them, to hear them and to know that they were okay. I still wasn’t even sure if my little one was also hurt and now, lying on the board, I couldn’t see. I asked the other mom to go be a mom to my kids. I blurted out phone numbers. I wanted to make sure everyone there knew who to call. We called my friends to meet us at the hospital. I gave everyone around me my kids’ dads name and number. I made sure everyone was connected. That’s what kept me thinking. I needed to plan. I needed to make sure my boys were okay and in touch with everyone.

And when we were finally in the ambulance, my little one was beside me also strapped in as a precaution, I began to think, should parents on their own with you kids do things like this alone? What if I had passed out? What if something worse really did happen? After being up all night and traveling back to a hospital in NYC, getting 14 stitches 3 layers deep, I wonder. As an adventurous mom, as a mom who loves what I call our #travelingtrio do I now have to re-think certain things? I love our trio, I live for every single thing I do on my own with my boys. However, this accident has made me think. It was traumatic for my boys to see me scared, helpless, hurt, panicked, worried and concerned. They had all of the same feelings. So does this mean a parent on their own has to alter adventures? Do I always need a plus one?

I don’t know the answer to this. What I do know is I have two brave boys. And that’s a good start.

To see the article, visit the Huffington Post.