Travel Tips #momhacks

As a mother who is obsessed with all things ‘mommy’, I have come to realise how many parents/mothers are so frightened to travel with children. Remotely for the reason that it may be a tough journey, it is hard, they’re not sure how to deal with it. It’s also particularly for that reason, that I see many people in the Romanian culture not taking their kids whilst young on vacations, preferring to either stay home for the first ten summers after they have a child or leave the children with a nanny/grandparents and go on holiday without their little counterparts. My opinions aside, I or should I say we – me and my husband, have never and have agreed to never leave our children behind when we go on a vacation (until they become teenagers of course and then make the choice to not come with us). Purely because as a couple that travel A LOT, we believe that travel is education – the beauty is not just waiting for you at the destination, but it is also within the travel itself. Children become who they are from their experiences and I am a strong believer that if you are blessed enough to visit other parts of our beautiful world then when they view it too, it benefits and educates their tiny souls in more ways than we can imagine. In our family, we LOVE the journey, and I’m truly not exaggerating here, it’s one of our favourite parts of all the countries we go to and some of the best memories we have, have been made on the journeys. If I really had to give you a sincere con with travelling with babies, it is the amount of baggage you have to carry, or so the amount it seems that you do. Then again, we have two babies, double the trouble. So without further ado, let me bullet point my top tips for you in order to keep your travel as smooth going as possible.

  • BACKPACKS – these are a sacred must, each of us has a backpack, easier to carry on our backs, for long haul walks through airports, the weight is evenly distributed, it avoids bag slipping, and you can even get trendy, sturdy backpacks if you’re a fashionista.
  • BABY WEARING – Boy oh boy, we would not have survived all those countries without our baby carriers. Ergonomic of course for healthy baby hips, comfortable and it means your hands are free. The way we do it, is one baby each and that’s basically where they stay for most of our journeys. Sincerely, I’m not sure either of us remember life without a baby carrier. Purchase yours today by clicking the link HEREIf you need to know more about carriers, which is the best for you and all about ergonomic carriers, then you can take a browse through my previous posts, or you can click HERE
  • ORGANIZATION – in those backpacks you’re carrying around, make sure you know what is where and in which compartment, making life a ton easier when you need to whip out some diapers or some water.
  • CRYING BABIES – if you’re waiting in a line at security, or any line for that matter of fact and your baby starts crying. Don’t panic, in fact try soothing your baby in your usual way because any ways chances are people will let you go first and then you can get your baby sorted out. It’s a win/win for both you and your baby. Ps. Don’t tell anyone I said that.
  • EASY CLOTHING – here’s the thing, all these people that travel so super trendy with nice normal clothes and accessories etc. FORGET THAT. A simple tracksuit, that’s comfortable, easy to open if breastfeeding, easy to sit and run and carry and sweat and cool down in. Ok, that’s gross, but you get my point. I mean anyways tracksuits, sweatpants etc. are so in nowadays, so if you’re reading this blog post and it’s 2017, then you’re in luck, grab yourself a new travelling outfit.
  • BABY CLOTHING – dress them in light, cotton layers, that are also easily breathable and don’t over layer them like dumplings on your buffet plate. If you’re babywearing, they’ll have your body heat anyways and if they’re in the pram, a nice comfortable tracksuit/other outfits plus a blanket will do the trick. When they’re hot they’ll kick it off, when they’re not they’ll snuggle in. Much easier than taking a jacket on and off.
  • SAY NO TO THE WHEELS – avoid trying to take a pram on the flight, it ends up being a hassle and if it is a low cost flight you’ll end up watching your pram in the middle of nowhere near the plane wondering if it’ll even make it to your destination. If you can, check the pram in and pick it up on the other side. If you don’t have a carrier, or baby prefers the pram then learn to open and close it with one hand if travelling alone.
  • SNACKS – I know many moms are against food bribery, I’m all about food bribery, just keep it healthy and you won’t have a problem.
  • TOYS – pack a multitude of SMALL toys that are also light in weight in contrast to one big toy. Once baby gets bored of that one big toy, then what are you going to do? Small toys can be constantly rotated through the journey keeping baby occupied when needed.
  • BOOKS – a couple of light weight books is always a good thing to bring. Raising baby bibliophiles in our family means that we never go anywhere without books.
  • CHILL– just always go AHEAD of time compared to other passengers who travel without babies, that way you’ll never be in a rush and you can go at the pace of your family. The most important advice I can give a mama friend out there is to stay relaxed. I’m at my most relaxed when I travel and my babies feel that vibe, so luckily they’re just as relaxed when travelling too. These experiences are always fun so as long as you empathise with them and fulfill their needs, you’ll have the sweetest baby jetsetters to accompany you on your journey. GUARANTEED. 

So pack your bags, pack your babies and enjoy the ride!

Trying to find an equilibrium.

As I attempt to type out this post, I have a nearly threenager crying in his bedroom because he doesn’t want his nappy changed and a 7 month oldm trying to type out her own blog post on my keyboard. You see, the thing is, I see all these ‘insta moms’ with the perfect profile pics and the perfect cutesie kids who pose for the camera. Never missing a blog post, a workout and always religiously posting and updating their instagram. Then, there’s me, perfectly imperfect. Missing months at a time without posting on my blog, although I vow everytime, that I will post daily. I don’t even remember the last time I had a good workout, actually I don’t even remember the last time I had one hour to myself. I would say that when I sleep I do, but then again I’m a co-sleeper and a breastfeeder, so of course. That’s not to myself.

Now it may seem like I’m complaining, seriously though, I am not. I guess the only thing I’m trying to say is that whilst it may have taken my fellow insta mama’s not so long to find their daily routine, it has taken me a whole 7 months to get into the flow of things. In those 7 months, I’ve also travelled 4 countries with 2 babies. Hosted a Christening, had my toddler join a new school, and also sign myself up to school. Also a lot of amazing going on in my life. It’s been crazy going since I’ve had two children, it’s been wonderful and it’s been time consuming, moreover, it’s been magical. And although my blog currently has no ‘scope’ as one would say, it is merely some kind of online diary, which is fine by me because my blog is after all Life of a Chocolate Girl, and this after all, is my life. I am in some way finally finding some equilibrium. Thank you, my subscribers for being on this journey with me and for those of you who want to know just how hard it is getting stuff done, I’m putting my latest VLOG below. Until next time…

Reema xoxox

 

 

 

 

Unpacking my ISARA

Hey guys, I’ve post my VLOG where I’m unpacking my oh so wonderful ISARA baby carrier. I’m truly IN LOVE with it, as I’m sure you will be too! So click play and see what came out of the box!

Love R,

Finding a new Niche

Niche: A comfortable or suitable position in life or employment.

Why have I started this post with a definition? Because metaphorically I am looking for one. Since having my second wonderful addition to my family, I have found that now, more than ever I have somewhat become lost. Lost in myself. Don’t misunderstand me, I  L O V E  being a mommy, every single second and everything else that comes with it, however, as I have written before, it is important to not let motherhood purely become your identity, as it’s from there I have learnt and seen in other people, things have started going wrong. It is important to never forget who YOU are, what you love and what you are passionate about.

aside from being extremely passionate about my wonderful family and my children am passionate about many weird, wild and wonderful things, yet lately I find I do nearly none of them. Not because anyone is stopping me, but somehow because I seem to subconsciously make a choice to not do so otherwise I am sure I will feel a guilt for doing something for me#motherhood #fatherhood #iknowmyhubbyfeelsthesameway. 

Another reason to why I’m not doing things I love (including my husband) #sorrynotsorry is because as a new mother to 2 little wonders, one being a toddler and the other being a newborn it is so hard to find the time. WE hate leaving our children with other people, it just doesn’t feel right to do so, as until today I never really felt I could trust anyone with my children.

So where does that leave me? 

  • feeling sometimes sad & frustrated, followed by guilt because actually my life isn’t all that bad and I have a wonderful family.
  • feeling unhappy with the way I look because it’s been 6 months since I last saw the interior of a gym.
  • feeling like I’m room mates with my husband because we’re so busy we forget that finding time for each other is important too.
  • feeling as though I’ll never be passionate about anything except for my children ever again.

Then suddenly, like a ray of light, I woke up, I or maybe I should say we – finally got the chance to speak about it and realised this wasn’t what we wanted. Sure we’re doing a great job as parents (or so I hope we are), sure we work hard, bringing money in, keeping a clean house, raising a healthy, happy, family. But what about us? What shall we do for ourselves. You see the problem here is the possibility. Let’s take simply TWO things I love which I managed to maintain with my new SAHM lifestyle the last time I was on maternity leave. I loved the gym and then it was something I would really connect with my husband about, we’d swap gym stories at the end of a long day, evem though we almost rarely/never got the chance to go together since having a baby. Nowadays I don’t get the time to go to the gym. I can make the time e.g. get up at 5.30am, I am truly that dedicated, yet for some reason in Romania I can’t find a gym that opens early enough for me to get there and grab a quick workout whilst baby is sleeping. Then at the end of the night it’s almost like we are so separate we rarely had anything left to talk about. Of course, love prevails all, so we decided to find something new. 

Find a new niche, a new passion that we both share and that we can both carry out alongside raising alone (alone together) two babies. So we did! We actually found not one, but two activities that we will start this week and they go hand in hand. We hope we’ll be taking them far. Being amateurs together should be a fun journey and I hope that in a year from now I will be progressing and excelling as I imagine. I cannot wait to share with you, my beloved readers, on my beloved blog my new found passions. Everytime I put something before writing a blog post, I miss it. It’s my outlet and I love to write to you, yet for some reason I never was making time. However, I will – and I will be posting pictures soon of everything new I’m upto and onto this new journey in fitness that I’m embarking on!

With Love, 

Reema

X O X O X 

 

Packing my s*#t

Tomorrow we go to ENGLAND. That therefore means today I’m a headless, exhausted chicken. It’s precisely 23.11pm neaaarly everything is done, hopefully I haven’t forgotten anything, if I have I’ll most likely blame it on my husband because truly, that’s what they’re their for. I still have to tidy up the house, although I did spend the whole day cleaning it in the first place, how does it get so messy?!?! My right boob hurts so I’m praying I don’t get mastitis again. Note to self: must not forget PUMP. 

It’s Aryana’s first flight tomorrow and our first flight as a four, I wonder how it will go? So far, so good, however, ‘the calm before the storm’ keeps running through my head. Anyways I better run and see if I manage to get some sleep. Must wear make up tomorrow so I don’t scare other passengers with my scary eye bags. Must remember pump. Must not panic. Must not try to miss Cliffy every few minutes. Must get at least a couple of hours sleep if I can before I go. 

Oh yeah, the flight is at 6. This should be fun. Catch you later on the blog DEFINITELY with a coffee as I’ll be on the plane. But until then take a browse at my first birthday cake of this year. Those who know me know that I always for some reason without fail end up with more than one cake. This one was from my mini- dinner party at my in laws. Truly spoilt, dinner, cake + present wise. 

Yours truly, momma of 3 who needs to get off her phone and catch some sleep. 

Motherhood Unplugged 

So I’m here again after what seems like an eternity, apologetic and ready to ‘catch-up’ as usual. Or more likely fill you in on all the crazy happening in my life. I would like to pretend I’m sipping a cup of coffee whilst my newborn is napping away and I’ve found an hour from my sweet new mommy #2 life to write this blog post. However, the truth is actually on my way to a check up with my doctor, sitting in the back of the car, making myself extremely nauseous whilst I write this. Anyone else get that? And truth is I’m cranky because I’ve said to myself a thousand times I should write on my blog, but by the time night comes I’m crashed out in bed with my make-up on whilst putting Ayan to sleep. Motherhood. So therefore I can’t wait any longer so I’ll just write in the car and throughout the rest of the day whenever I’m catching 5 minutes to do so. That’s paragraph one done. I’ve arrived, so I’ll save this draft and be back later… 

Back again, finally home, everything is great! Scar is looking good. Aryana is currently burping/vomiting on me whilst I write this, however, before I leave in half an hour to take her for her first check up I would like to finish this post. So let’s see shall we. 

As I was saying, well actually I don’t remember what I was saying, but what I do want to say is that, blogging is something I so love to do, I love to write, write about my life. I love the questions I receive, the insight I give people into my personal life. However, at some point blogging turned into a ‘competition’ for me, I kept following other bloggers, especially ‘mom bloggers’ to catch what ideas they had, to see how they were doing climbing the social ladder. And at some point I noticed a trend. These mothers all seem to have the ‘perfect lives’ with perfect babies that sleep through the night, perfect make-up, perfect hair and perfect white backgrounds for their Insta pics and their vlogs. And whilst all that may be true, it is not achievable – not without a whole lot of stress anyways. I found that at some point I got caught up in some kind of competition, to portray the ‘perfect Insta life too’. Stressing on taking the perfect Instagram picture, stressing on having my make up perfect for a vlog, stressing on writing the perfect blog posts. Making everything seem like my motherhood was easy, smooth and life was bliss. Well it’s not true. My life is bliss, but for all that it is and all that it isn’t. For all that I manage to do and all that I don’t.

If you’re a mother to be, or just another momma following a mommy blogger than please don’t put the expectations on yourself that they seem to lay out for you. I can assure you half these ‘perfect mommies’ have parents, in laws, nannies, cleaners to help them do what they do. Hence the extra time to do all these crafty, Pinterest things that get us feeling like we aren’t doing enough. Admittedly as a mother I have extremely high expectations of myself 99% of the time so I end up joining the Pinterest mommy club, however, it’s not always smooth sailing and there is 1% of the time when I’m a binge eating, tired, stressy mom who feeds my kids chicken nuggets for lunch AND dinner. And I’m going to blog about it. 

Yep that’s right, I want to give a real insight into my REAL life. Not my wannabe Insta mom life that anyways I never can keep up with. I want to show what it’s REALLY like to be a momma with a toddler and a newborn, to be young, full of passions, tired as hell, mostly achieving what I set out to do but everyday for at least a few moments as my husband will tell you… a hot mess. I want to blog the real me. Blog what’s REALLY written in my diary for the day, write about the tantrum Ayan had and although I was a zen mother on the outside I’m crying on the inside. So as of today I’m blogging my life to you, my real life, with all the social media around even being a mother has become a competition and I’m tired of it, so join me on my journey, even if I don’t have fancy Insta pics or if I don’t look like a model everyday or if I write a cranky post, grab a coffee (only one if you’re breastfeeding or pregnant). Because motherhood is fun, it is great, it’s full of ups, but there is also sad times, frustrating times and times of tears. Because this is REAL motherhood, this is… motherhood unplugged. 

Positivity ✨

Goooood morning my chocolate lovers, so there’s a saying that goes ‘Either you run the day, or the day runs you’. I like to run my day, so I start it  P O S I T I V E. How do you like to start yours?

Kisses and a great day my chocolate lovers!!