How I’ve Changed as a Teacher Since Becoming a Mother

When out and about having small talk with random people and the subject of what I do for a living comes up and I joyfully tell them “I am a teacher” the follow up question is immediately “what grade?”   When I respond proudly, “middle school” I get the same squinty, dirty look in response.   People usually retort with comments like, “wow, that must be tough” or “ew why?”   And yes it is hard and challenging but it is such a great job.   Not one adult can look back at their middle school years and think, “man, I loved my hair,” “my clothes where so cool,” or “I had it all together.”   These are the years where students make fashion disasters, learn to survive without their parent’s assistance, have their first crush, get picked on, and HOPEFULLY learn how to be hardworking, good people.  I have been an educator for many years teaching the very interesting students of them all-middle schoolers.

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Since becoming a mother my teaching practices have changed drastically.   I started by assigning less homework  I did this for two reasons; one because I realize when kids come home from a long day of work asking them to do even more work is a hard task.   Students are also involved in many different after school activities like soccer, piano, or dance-they don’t have time for homework.   Parents also get little time with their kids, and arguing with them to do some science is not a way I want to spend my evening.   I also started assigning less homework to give myself less work.  As a teacher, the more you assign, the more you grade.   And I too believe spending time with your family is valuable, precious, and can’t be replaced.    Yes, do I think it is important to read with your child every night? Of course!   But playing outside, sitting down at dinner together, having a conversation, or playing a sport is more important.

After becoming a mom, I now care less about my students “learning” and more about turning them into good people who possess values like hard work, determination, and kindness.   When I first started teaching I was all about teaching grammar, wiring, and reading comprehension.   But as an adult when was the last time you dissected a sentence for parts of speech?   Writing and reading skills are key in becoming successful, but if there is anything my students take away from having Mrs. Doyle as a teacher I want it to be that hard work will make you successful in life, being kind to others is more important than being popular, and if you do anything be determined at it-never give up.   I often tell my students, “the boss of a company is not the smartest person in the room, they are the most hardworking.”

Another way I have changed as a teacher is a sad thing that I have realized-not all of my students have good parents or live in a stable home.   I had a blind eye or maybe a naive mind when I became a teacher.   I came from a stable home, my parents who are still married to this day, are both hard working individuals who value education.   Not all of my student’s parents value education.   They don’t care if their child has or does homework, they don’t care if their kid even passes my class.   I have called parents to discuss failing grades and I am practically burdening them with the phone call.   Some-didn’t choose to become parents-they became them.   Some of my students do not have a stable home, they are living in broken homes of divorced parents, parents who are alcoholics, drug attics, or even homeless.   School, or my class, just might be the only stable thing they have in their lives.  So what if the student comes to school without paper, a pencil?   I used to get mad-how could a parent send their kids to school without a binder or something to write with?  Now being a mom, I hand them school supplies over and over again and offer a loving smile and a chance to change their future. 

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I want to be a teacher, who I hope one day when my kids are in school have.   Someone who will love my children as their own, teach them right from wrong, and encourage them to have greatness in their life.

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

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Festive St. Patrick’s Day Cocktail

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As your resident St. Patrick’s Day chick I am here bringing you an EASY St. Patty’s Day cocktail!  Want to know why I LOVE St. Patty’s Day {other than the fact that it’s my second birthday being a redheaded Irish girl} read about that here-Why Redlocks and Shamrocks.

When I think of St. Patrick’s Day in my younger pre-mommy years several beverages come to mind: green beer, Irish Car Bombs, and the dreaded Jager Bomb. {I think I just puked a little-hangover memories}.   This cocktail has none of those ingredients! And if you ask me its really refreshing and perfect for a little day drinking.  🙂

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Ingredients:

  • Sparkling Moscato:  I used Barefoot Bubbly
  • Sprite
  • GREEN Grapes (fresh or frozen) for the festive look
  • Ice

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How cute are these cups from Target?  Shhh secret they are PLASTIC!

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All you need to do for this drink is fill your cup with ice and grapes then pour in the moscato-as much or as little as you want.   Next top with a tiny bit of Sprite!  And BAM a quick and refreshing cocktail!

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Btw this is my go to hair style these days-natural hot mess hair that is a few days dirty with a messy fishtail or dutch braid. 

  • Cardi: Old Navy
  • Shirt: Nordstrom
  • Watch:  Michael Kors
  • Lips:  Lipsense Color “Flour de Lisa” {duh I HAD to pick that color}  My girl Melissa is a distributor if you are interested you can contact her here.

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No matter if you are at an Irish pub or at home trying to catch a leprechaun with your little ones, have a great time celebrating St. Patrick’s Day this year readers!

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

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Making Memories Last Forever with Shutterfly

Making Memories Last Forever with Shutterfly

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I have always been OBSESSED with taking photos and capturing moments even back in the era of disposable cameras.  I love going over to my parent’s house to browse though my baby books and high school scrapbooks-those memories are made to last forever because of a photo book.  Its so fun to compare myself as a child to my children.  But now in the digital age the hard copy photo book is starting to became a thing of the past because they take so long to make-but NOT WITH THIS SECRET I am going to share with you-the Shutterfly Make My Book Service.

It brings me so much joy that we live in the age of technology were 1,000 photos can be taken at just one event making them a permanent part of the history of our families.   What is sad is that most of us just load those photos on a Facebook album and that is that-lets put an end to that!   Often there is no printing, scrap booking, framing, nothing.    {I never even finished our wedding album!}  Shutterfly has made a NEW way to make photo books-they do it for you! SCORE!  Shutterfly makes it so easy with their Make My Book service-it literally took only minutes out of my day and I received a beautiful product.

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I have this new rule as I am ‘adulting’ its called-leave it up to the professionals.  Painting, wedding planning, plumbing, installing just about anything–DIYing is not really my thing anymore as my hubby and I pretty much ruin everything we touch. {Sorry babe}  I am also a working mom so often crafts and DIYs are much harder as there is NO TIME to do those things.  Its worth the time and headache to just pay someone to do it for me.  The Shutterfly Make My Book service takes all the headaches away from photo book designing.

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We seriously LOVED getting our photo book back and looking at all the wonderful memories we made.

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I really enjoy the process of making photo books on Shutterfly, making sure every photograph I like is exactly on the right page-and showing my right angles lol.  This crucial process would not only take me hours, it would take me days!  I was skeptical, but hopeful to try their new Make My Book service.   For only a $9.99 service fee they design the entire book for you-cover to cover-all you do is submit the photos.

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The process was almost too easy guys!  It took me less than 5 minutes to submit my family photos and select and overall design of the photo book.  In a matter of about 24 hours my book preview came back from the Shutterfly designers.   It was pretty much perfect!  Of course me being a psycho- I didn’t like how I looked in a few photographs.  I could easily hit ‘edit’ swap them out and it was as good as ever!  So don’t be hesitant if you think you won’t like what they come up with, you can make major changes to your book {even though I don’t think you will.}   You can also choose not to buy the book entirely–like you’ll do that–so really there is little risk involved.

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From now on I know I personally will always be using the Make My Book photo book service from Shutterfly because the product came out PERFECT and it saved me massive amounts of hours in front of my computer-precious time I could be spending with my family, or sleeping lol.  Our photo book looks FAB as a coffee table book!

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Have a great time making your photo books with the Make My Book feature from Shutterfly!

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

**The photography in the Shutterfly photo book was captured by J.anne Photography

 

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Planning the Perfect Bachelorette Party!

Guest blog by Ashley Brooke

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Hey guys!  Lisa here your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl!  Meet Ashley Brooke my guest writer for this blog post!  Ashley and I went to college together at UNLV and she was a cheerleader when I was a Rebel Girl.   Ashley is an amazing wife, working mother, and a fitness junkie!  She is SUCH an inspiration to eat right, be fit, and grow confidence.  Follower her on Instagram at @ashbrooke_balanced if you want daily fitness inspiration.  Check out her feature on my blog about planning the perfect bachelorette party! 

Hi Babes! First I want to thank Lisa for so generously offering up her blog allowing this post to happen! So many of you have commented and messaged me asking for all the details on planning the PERFECT bachelorette party and I originally intended to just do an Instagram post but there is just NO WAY I could fit it all in! If this post helps just ONE babe in planning her own/friend’s bachelorette party, I will be one happy mama! So here it goes…

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YAY!!! Your BF is getting married!!! Once the initial excitement of an engagement for your bestie has passed, the real work for the maid of honor sets in. BACHLORETTE PARTY PLANNING! Knowing your bride is the critical first step in planning, for example if your bride hates the cold, a weekend hitting the slopes in Tahoe probably isn’t the best fit. For my bride and bestie of 10 years Samantha (Sami for short) I knew she wanted a sunny and warm bachelorette party. Not sure what your bride is looking for? Ask her! Don’t want to spoil a surprise? Ask her general questions like (warm weather or cool, travel or no travel, strippers or no strippers…haha but seriously ask!). It’s better to get these ideas as specific as possible to get a really good idea of what your bride would prefer before you spend the time and money putting together a party that misses the mark. The next and final thing you need from the bride is a list of her girls, the ones she wants to spend her last big blowout single weekend with!

Once you know what your bride wants and have the list of girls, let the planning begin! After attending many bachelorette parties, I’ve been through the good, bad and ugly. Knowing that Sami wanted a sunny/warm party in January/February my options for locations were pretty limited. I narrowed my ideas down to Florida (Disney World) and Mexico. One day while driving to work and listening to the radio I heard an ad for Luke Bryan’s Crash My Playa, instantly intrigued (not even for the bachelorette party) I went to the website and saw the timing was incredible for the bachelorette party and the more I thought about it, the more I realized I was not going to find anything better. All-inclusive resort (remember the good the bad and the ugly? Splitting dinner checks and bar tabs every night between 8 girls is awful!). 4 nights of country concerts, pool side shows and most importantly SUNSHINE & BEACH! Once I knew where we were going and asked the bridesmaids if they were ok with all of the details, dates & pricing we were all set!

Since our college sorority days (shout out to Delta Zeta Girls) we have always loved to theme and match during girl’s trips, so coming up with the perfect theme for the weekend was really important to me. To be honest, I am not really sure how I came up with it but the word BEACHLORETTE popped up in my head and I couldn’t let it go and from there Sami’s Beachlorette was born. I asked a friend Josh (link below) to design a logo for me using a palm tree and some type of handwritten font to say Sami’s Beachlorette Crash My Playa 2017. I let him know the logo would be used on tank tops. He presented a few options and I picked this one!  In the same writing I asked him to also do a “Beaches” logo and “Beachlorette” logo so that we could have a second tank where all the girls were in beaches tank tops and our bride was in her Beachlorette Crop! It worked out so cute! (by the way, the font is called Lemon Tuesday and you can download it for free, just type it into google).

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Next I wanted to theme each day with our bride’s favorite things! A few of her favorite things include: unicorns, camo print, and bows so these things became the inspiration for each night.  To kick off the party we started night one in cutoff shorts & our matching beachlorette logo tanks (I did make Sami a cowboy hat with a veil, but her head was too big and it didn’t fit haha…oops). For our first day by the pool we all wore whatever swimsuit we wanted but our coordinating tank tops over them, this day was cleverly called “where my beaches at”. For night two we all had fun pretending to be unicorns. The bride was instructed to wear her favorite white dress/romper and all the girls were asked to wear their favorite black dress/romper. The next day we all wore matching swimsuits, I searched far and wide for a palm tree/beach print that had several different options that girls could choose from. These PilyQ suits were great. They had a one-piece option, two different tops and bottoms to choose from and shorts. We got so many compliments this day! For night three we were “Sami’s Soldiers” we all wore matching camo headbands, white shirts and jeans casual and comfortable after a long day in the sun. For the final day we planned a group yoga class and bought the bride a palm tree yoga outfit, each of the girls were asked to wear a solid color yoga outfit in Black, White or Gray (although we didn’t actually get to do yoga…long story…we still looked adorable J ). For the final night we decided to go BOWHO in Mexico. Each girl was asked to wear a boho outfit of their choice. In my opinion, the key to success here is to try and “theme” most of your night/days outfits that give girls flexibility to either buy a new outfit if they want or find something they already have in their closet…no matter what you choose as long as your bride has a veil on at all times, she will stand out!

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Some other fun accessories that made the weekend stand out were matching palm tree sunglasses, custom and personalized water bottles, oversized pool floats (TIP! Use the hotel blow dryer to inflate in your room…it works!)  and the adorable custom sun hats that the bride brought along for all the girls as a gift! 

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To reveal the location (and themes) of the bachelorette party to Sami and the rest of the girls I created packages from Santa. These packages included a full itinerary and each of the little accessories they needed so they could plan and coordinate their outfits. I created the itinerary using Microsoft Word and purchased boxes, tissue paper and palm tree confetti on Amazon.  

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The final step of planning was to create a “need to knows” packet. The purpose of this packet was to have all the details of the trip, contact information, location, emergency contact information ect in one place not only for us, but for our families. I also included a packing list because I typically make them anyway for my trips and I didn’t want any girl forgetting one of her themed goodies (and it worked! no one forgot!). this document was made using Microsoft word and I found little weather icons using google.

 

MY TOP 3 PLANNING TIPS:

  • Plan Ahead to avoid paying rush charges for custom items like tank tops, hats, tumblers and Veils. Give yourself at least 6-8 weeks.
  • If you are on a budget, you can DIY many of these items. Tulle is available in bulk on amazon or fabric stores for much cheaper than having someone else make them for you.
  • Choose a location that gives you all types of options for group experiences, concerts, fitness studios and down time.

MY FAVORITE BACHELORETTE PARTY LOCATIONS & THEMES!

  • Beachlorette: for obvious reasons I pick any beach and start planning! Cali, Miami and Mexico. I love the idea of all inclusive resorts because it just makes things easy!
  • Bachville: Grab your cowboys boots and head to Nashville, this is an amazing city with tons of bars, restaurants and activities. This city is packed with live music, culture and scenery.
  • NOLA: I haven’t been, but I have always thought New Orleans would be a great city for a bachelorette party, When I think of NOLA I think of taking a group pastry class to learn how to make their world famous beignets or a haunted city tour soaking gup the history.
  • Austin: This hotel looks like an incredible girls’ getaway https://travaasa.com/
  • Vegas: For the party bride you really can’t go wrong with this location. With enough girls you can generally get access to comp bottles, tables and dinners and some of the best restaurants, night clubs and day clubs.
  • Napa: How much fun would wine tours and tastings be with all your girls. Napa is a foodie town as well, a great spot to get some amazing meals.

 

SHOPPING LINKS:

Sami’s Beachlorette Logo: www.iamjoshlucas.com

Custom tank tops/crops/t-shirts: www.customizedgirl.com

Palm tree sunglasses: www.sunglassspot.com

Starfish Veil: RiosBows on Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/RiosBows

Unicorn Headbands: RAQuirkybits on Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/RAQuirkyBits

Custom Bridal Mrs.Veil: myeverydayparty on Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/myeverydayparty

Custom Tumblers: shoparoundthecorner3 on Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/ShopAroundTheCorner

Custom Sun Hats: lifehasjustbegun on Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/LifeHasJustBegun

Palm Tree Swim Suits: https://www.swimoutlet.com

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Thank you to Ashley for sharing her amazing tips! I hope you all enjoyed Ash’s post on planning the perfect bachelorette party!  I know I will be putting this advice to good use as I am helping plan one of my best friend’s bachelorette parties in a few months! EK!  I can only pray it is as cute as this one!  If you aren’t following her on Instagram yet @ashbrooke_balanced, you are really missing out!

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

 

 

 

 

 

5 Date Nights to Have at HOME!

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My husband and I don’t get too many date nights where we get dressed up, leave the kids at home, and have a nice dinner.   There are many reasons why a month {or embarrassingly multiple months} will go by and we don’t get the opportunity to get out of the house alone-babysitters, time, not wanting to leave kids after working all day.  The list {or excuses} goes on and on, but those traditional dates don’t happen often in our relationship.  Nevertheless that doesn’t mean we don’t have a good marriage or don’t dedicate time to maintain our loving relationship.   My husband and I do several things throughout the day-even if we’re not together to show our love and affection for one another-but you can’t replace those important moments alone together.  Once our children go to bed at 8pm we often are so exhausted we want to fall asleep too, but this part of the evening is quality time just for the two of us which is why often we will do a date night AT HOME! Here are five ways we do date nights at home:

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  1. Post bedtime dinner date: Family dinners are SO important in our family and it is a tradition we are instilling in our family.  However, every now and then its okay to do dinners apart and feed your kids some grilled cheeses and eat a light snack.  Then after the kids go to bed I send my husband out for some takeout from a nicer-but not too nice restaurant.  Our go to in the Las Vegas area is I Love Sushi or Table Thai.  While my hubby is out picking up the order I set the table and light some candles-or we will pig out right on the couch.  It is a simple perfect at home date night.
  1. Sit outside: After putting the kids to bed sit outside under the stars open a bottle of wine a relax. Sometimes these moments are the best to even not talk.  Just soak up quite time with your man-after all whether you’re a SAHM or a working mom you’ve been hustling and hearing talking all day long, it’s time to wind down and relax.
  1. Movie night: After putting the kids to bed pick out a movie pop some popcorn and cuddle. Put down the phones like you would in a real theater!!! Warning- don’t pull the exhausted parent move and fall asleep during the movie like my husband does. Lol
  1. Unplug completely: I know, I know you’re behind on Real Housewives or How to Get Away with Murder and you want to see what everyone has been up to on Instagram {are you following me @redlocksandshamrocks?} but unplug-turn off the TV, put the iPhone on the charger in the next room, and talk or play an old fashion board game. Better yet make it into a drinking game.
  1. The comPARENTion– Who doesn’t love a good competition? Whoever gets their kid to do something the child hates wins a 10-minute foot, back, or neck massage! For example, our toddler hates broccoli, whoever can successfully get our child to eat the veggie (without tears or forcing it down) wins!  This can be used for food, chores, bath time whatever your kid fights you to the death not to do!

 

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Time away from your kids and quality time with your husband is crucial in maintaining a happy relationship.  It’s so easy to fall asleep on the couch, zone out on TV or social media, do chores, or even do work from home after the kids go to bed, but remember to take time to focus on the heart of your family-the husband and wife relationship.

What at home date nights do you and your spouse love?  Comment below and tell me!

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

The photography in this blog post was by J. Anne Photography

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It May Not Be Your First RODEO, but It Was His!

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It may not be your first rodeo, but it was Kohen’s!   Our little man recently celebrated his first birthday so we partied cowboy style throwing him his first rodeo!  For first birthday parties I love to do themes, easy food, and festive decor!   Did you see Logie Bears’ first birthday?  Check out that blog post here. I was lucky enough to meet the wonderful event planner of Starry Eyed Events who helped decorate part of his party.   If you are in the Las Vegas area definitely hit her up for your next celebration!  The other decor was either thrown together from what I already had or from Oriental Trading.

Our little birthday boy was too excited about the balloons that Starry Eyed Events brought that you couldn’t quite see his “My First Rodeo” t-shirt.

Cowboy gear was the dress code for the event, but if a guest came unprepared I got these cute cowboy hats and bandannas to keep everyone festive.

Starry Eyed Events did a pristine job decorating the dessert table to display tempting cupcakes and the first birthday staple, the SMASH cake!  I always say the BEST place to get a small smash cake is Albertsons!  They always do a great job for a low cost and often will throw in the smash cake for FREE if you order enough cupcakes.

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Starry Eyed Events even brought an ipod and speaker filled with country jams and rodeo tunes to set the mood and ambiance of the party.  This allowed every person to grab their partner and Do Si Do!  I put up the other decorations for the party about a week in advance.   This always helps get the kids excited and give you one less thing to do as the party day comes closer!

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Other decor I threw together was a clothesline banner displaying Kohen’s monthly photographs-he grew so much in one year!

Simple number one balloons, flowers, and mason jars were great center pieces.   And Pin the Tale on the Cow was a fun game for the toddlers at the party!

I also set out a craft for the kiddos to make their own farm out of animal stickers and construction paper.   Don’t you just love this custom farm table? We get TONS of use out of it.

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Now for the food!

I have to admit I love throwing parties but I HATE making food.   Its so much work-the planning, cooking, and clean up alone! Ugh!  I always try to buy most of the food and only make a few things.   It seems to saves energy and sometimes money.

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Pulled pork, chicken, and “KoKo Beans” (baked beans) were served in my triple crock-pot, a must for parties.

Fruit, cups of popcorn, and chips made for great rodeo side dishes.

The smash cake is always my favorite party of any first birthday!   The little one’s first taste of sweetness, will they be scared?  Like it?  Be disgusted? Devour it?

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We of course shared with our older sister!

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Happy birthday to our little Bean!  I can’t wait to see the adventures you will encounter this coming year!  

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

 

*This blog post was partnered with Starry Eyed Events.   This was an amazing party planning company to work with and I highly recommend it.   The thoughts and opinions of this blog are my own.

My Mommy Body is Failing Me.

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I used to be a dancer. An athlete.  A runner.  Now I’m a mom.  My body is bruised up, it aches, my hips lock up, and bladder feels like it will fall out every time I workout.   Now don’t get me confused when I am writing this post.  I do love the skin I’m in.  When I actually have the time to get dressed up I often feel beautiful.   Yes, I don’t have my skinny Rebel Girl dance team hot college bod.  I’m not that person anymore, and I am okay with that.  I do love my body, but hate it at the same time.  

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I want to be able to RUN, but my post pregnancy hips won’t allow me.  I want to hit the gym and do sit ups, but gaining and loosing 50lbs in under 15 months took one hell of a toll on my ab muscles.  Will I ever get them back?   It depresses me that my body physically can’t do what it used to do.   I used to run 5ks in under 30 minutes, cheer for hours during a UNLV basketball game, or perform a difficult hip hop competition routine.  Now my mom bod barely allows me to run a mile.

With my mom bod, I am strong in other ways I guess. Now I can lift a total of 50lbs of children in my arms carrying my kids from car to the store then back to the car all while having a heavy diaper bag slung over my shoulder.  I can also push their 50lb cute butts in a 15lb double stroller but my body doesn’t allow me to run as fast as I used to or as long as I could.  When I finally start to run, my hip will lock up to the point where I can’t even take one step or I will collapse.  I have pushed myself to the limit during one of my tragic-hip-lock-ups and fallen over, using my running stroller to brace me from hitting the black pavement that once used to be my get away.   I may sound crazy but if you’re an athlete of any sport you get it because as a competitor-we push ourselves to the max.   This black pavement that used to be my friend, my cathartic outlet, has now turned into my enemy.

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I feel so offended that my body, at the moment, can’t be pushed the way my athletic mind wants to.  I am still suffering the battles of birthing a 9.5 oz child almost a year later.  Every time I put on workout clothes (which is often) I ask myself: will I ever get my endurance and ability back?  I can no longer kick my leg past my head or even do the splits- things might fall out.    I know, I know I’m being hard on myself.  And maybe I can get my pre-baby hot Rebel Girl, I can do anything body, back but I need help or a support system.   I try to stretch, run, or dance but beat myself up when I can’t do something and then sadly give up.

I remember one time I was at the gym attempting to do my first few sit ups post pregnancy.  It was an utter joke.  I couldn’t even lift my shoulders off the dirty gym floor.   I instantly felt defeated.  I could sense the gazing eyes of all the fit people at the gym staring and laughing at me-I had to fight back tears.   After collecting my thoughts and looking around-no one was really looking at me, they were all into their own workouts, it was just me judging myself- my harshest critic.

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As I write this blog on my iPhone, I am pedaling on a stationary bike holding back tears of failure because as much as I want to put down my phone and pedal like the speed of lightening, my hips won’t allow me, my knees ache, and even though I just went to the bathroom I feel like I have to pee again.  After every workout instead of feeling high as a kite or happy that I broke a sweat- I feel defeated like I lost a championship.  I am almost a year post pregnancy and I still don’t feel “normal” again.   This is something that as an onlooker probably seems strange-for me I luckily lose my pregnancy weight rather quickly.  People may see me as ‘skinny’ but what they don’t see is my lack of ability and inner confidence.

Will I ever dance again? Will I ever run a 5k again? Is that all over for me now that I’m a mom?  It’s something I am okay with giving up because being a mom is everything.  But my athletic dancer mindset hasn’t changed and doesn’t want to let go.

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If you’ve suffered through this ‘mom bod failure’ before, what are some tips and suggestions you have for me?

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

A Family Night Out at Peter Piper Pizza

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Tonight, was a momentous event in the Doyle family!  Our two-year-old is now potty trained!  Logan has worked very hard to master using the big girl potty, so as a reward she chose to eat her favorite all time food-PIZZA! We wanted to do something fun with her as a celebration so we took her to a restaurant that just came back to Las Vegas, Peter Piper Pizza! When I was a kid growing up in Las Vegas for any celebration we always begging my parents to go to pizza and play games!  The joys of being a kid having a pocket full of tokens, collecting and adding up tickets, to then select a small toy was the highlight to any kid’s month!  We are stoked that the restaurant, Peter Piper Pizza, came back in town and its better than ever!

Peter Piper Pizza is a great restaurant for a family fun night out!  It has great food, games, prizes, TVs displaying cartoons and football, and BEER!  I mean it is a restaurant for the WHOLE family!   We liked eating at this restaurant for Logie’s potty training celebration because Peter Piper Pizza’s environment geared toward kids and the games fully entertained her as we waited for our meal. 

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We had a great time playing the games at Peter Piper Pizza.   As you enter, you can buy tokens for .25 cents each, most games are 1 to 2 tokens so we bought 20 tokens for $5.00.   Logan at first was a little overwhelmed with all the lights, games, and noises, but after she tried her first game she was hooked!   Logan and I really enjoyed the easy ball drop games which guaranteed tickets-great for those toddlers unable to actually ‘beat’ a game.  

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My husband’s favorite game was of course Pop-a-Shot where he relived his basketball glory days.  There were plenty of games geared toward older kids that we didn’t try out but sure looked like a blast!

Logan surprisingly ended up winning 55 tickets!  She had a wonderful time looking though the prizes at the ticket counter and the nice worker there let her pick specific colors she liked.   Our girly girl went with mostly jewelry and one small toy.

After we played the games we worked up quite an appetite!   We ordered a serving of bread sticks, a large pizza, two sodas, and a kids drink all for around 20 bucks.

The breadsticks with a side of marinara sauce came out first.   They were the perfect combination of crispy and soft with just the right amount of garlic and parmesan sprinkled on them.   Both of my kids and husband devoured them!  If you are a carbaholic these breadsticks were wayyy better than any other pizza place!

The pizza came out piping hot and oozing with cheese!  My family is very picky on their pizza-we take it very seriously!  And this pizza is really delectable!  It was not too greasy and had just the right amount of sauce on it.   The crust almost had a sweet after taste and was nice and crispy on the bottom, but still soft on the end.   The whole family loved it-the 11 month old, 2 year old, and the parents.   Daddy even had to cut himself off-it was hard for him to turn away that last slice.

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The restaurant itself was very clean-there were constantly workers bussing tables and picking up.   Since we celebrated a newly potty trained princess we did check out the bathrooms several times which were very clean! Lol

Overall we had a great time at Peter Piper Pizza!   The kids {and parents} had a great time playing all the games, collecting tickets, and picking out prizes.   The food was delicious and both of my kids actually devoured their meal!  Which if you have toddlers, says a lot!!

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This place is fun for the whole family and is Redlocks and Shamrocks approved!  Check out both Peter Piper Pizza‘s new locations now that they are BACK in Las Vegas!

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

 

*This post was sponsored by Peter Piper Pizza-the thoughts and opinions are my own.

Teething Necklaces 101: A Redlocks Review

 

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I am not gonna to lie, before trying out teething necklaces I was never really a fan.  Whenever I would see moms out and about holding their cute innocent child then to catch a glimpse of  realness- that cute innocent child was actually a drooling baby who was gnawing on their mom’s necklace.  The sight kind of creeped me out at first…until I became a mother to a teething baby and tired one!  Its true what they say about parenting-never judge others.   That was the pre-teething-momma’s views, now I will do anything to help sooth my little ones gums and keep me from getting my shoulder, hair, or outfit gnawd on, soaked, and tangled! Redlocks and Shamrocks is bringing you Redlocks Review on the Nuby Teething Jewelry!*

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Nuby carries three styles of teething jewelry seen in this photo in various colors such as grey, blue, navy, and pink.   They are all made of soft silicone to provide stimulation to gums and emerging teeth. 

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The first time trying out teething necklaces I was trying to get ready for a friend’s bridal shower.   Of course, I was running late, trying to put on mascara, and my baby wanted to be held-the second I set him down he would cry.   As a mom of two I have mastered the-do anything with one hand skill-but my little boy kept grabbing at my mascara!  I threw on the teething jewelry on a whim and it kept him entertained while I finished getting ready. 

The soft textured surface was safe for him to tug, touch, and teethe verses everything else in arms reach on my bathroom counter or on me!

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My weekend mom warrior look consists of workout clothes-even though I rarely get the chance to hit the gym these days.  Isn’t it a workout chasing your toddler around the park and lifting two kids in and out of car seats to go grocery shopping right? 

This design of Nuby Teething Jewelry has a more casual look to it with the black ribbon tying in with my ‘workout’ mom style.  Plus my baby can easily grasp the round disk shape.

This little guy had a blast walking around our neighborhood and going to the grocery store with this compact ‘toy’ strapped around my neck.

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All of the teething jewelry features a plastic clasp for fastening and added security making wearing and taking off a snap! The flat disk style of Nuby Teething Jewelry also comes in a dark navy.  My personal style tends to be more minimalist jewelry not statement pieces so I went with the neutral gray again. 

I keep this one in my diaper bag to throw on anywhere-in this case the park-when my baby getting the terrible teething tingles!   One thing I like about Nuby teething necklaces verses other brands is the price is right!  Teething necklaces should be functional and cute but not break the bank-this isn’t Tiffany’s jewelry!  All styles of the Nuby Teeth Jewelry are of course 100% Silicone, BPA free, and available now on  Amazon!

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

*This post was sponsored by Nuby

Working Mom Problems

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              Tired. Exhausted. Busy. Happy. The life of a working mother is no joke. Literally every minute, no wait second of my day is used up.   From the moment I wake up in the early hours tending to my children getting them dressed for the day to the moment I finally get to sit down and relax and finally check emails, write a blog, or {maybe} watch Netflix, every second in between is used, valued, and pushed to the maximum capacity.   When you are a working mom, you will always feel guilty kissing your little one and leaving them to head out to your job. You’re most likely running late, not a dressed up as you’d like to be, and have an extra large cup of coffee in your hand.   I don’t sacrifice a second extra away from my family so once I step foot at work I am moving a mile a minute to get everything done.  

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                 Once I pull into work I park my car, grab my coffee to go, and the moment my foot hits the pavement I am darting around trying to get the millions of tasks accomplished.   When I am at work I never. stop. moving.  I am constantly multi-tasking trying to keep from the feeling of drowning in work.  The moments where I do get a break I am sitting at my desk, alone in the dark, listening to the endless wonk wonk wonk of my breastpump.  I don’t have time to hang with coworkers or have long chats about daily life, because every second I am doing something for work trying to get my ‘to-do’ list crossed off.   Then like a flash, I have to lock myself in a cold, dark room and start pumping then storing milk. The challenges of a breastfeeding, working mom are endless.  There is no “hanging out with other adults” during my day.  Its work, grade, teach, eat lunch alone while pumping, try to tune out the negatively and absorb the positivity-if you’re going to be away from your family it better be worth it.

            I used to go back in forth with the argument of what’s more difficult: the working mom or the stay at home mom.   I am lucky in my career since I am a teacher that I get to experience both sides of motherhood.   I am the August-May working mom who tries to get the laundry all washed, folded, and put away on a Sunday. The working mom who misses her kids terribly, loves her job at the same time, and still tries to get dinner on the table at a decent hour. The mom who is so dang tired from working all day, but then suddenly those little arm wrap around you and you get a second burst of energy.   It is so hard to be a working mom. How do people keep their house together???? I find it impossible as there are always dirty dishes or bottles in my sink. {Veteran working moms please share your secrets with me.} The positive note of being a working mom is every second and moment you have with your children it is cherished.   Its amazing! I try to do as many fun activities with my children as possible.  We never have “just another Saturday,” its always spent spoiling my little ones with activities because the mom guilt of being away from them during the week is unreal.

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            Being a working mother I find it extremely hard to take care of myself.   I don’t want to spend any more time away from my children so getting my nails done, hair cut, going to the doctor, or even grabbing lunch with an old friend makes my heart sink.   I am sadly watching myself ‘go’ as I have no time for the gym, get my nails done, or even curl my hair.   At this point in my life, I am so busy {and exhausted} I am lucky if both legs get shaved in the shower.   Taking a day off of work to go to the doctor doesn’t happen-if I am taking a day off from my job it is to spend with my children.   Usually nap time is ‘rest time’ for moms-you count down the hours until the beloved nap time.   But for me on my cherished weekends, nap time for a working mom means running around like a manic. You have two hours {if you’re lucky} to get about 10 hours worth of children free errands in.

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            The times I am on summer vacation I am the stay at home mom. The pressure of getting the laundry done goes out the window, I have all day Monday or maybe even Tuesday to fold and put those clothes away right? Making dinner is no longer a chore, it’s a time to be away from your children in a much needed adult break.  You can get more done with your day during nap time than the whole day.   Going on walks in the middle of the day is for entertainment rather than exercise. Trips to the grocery store and Target are much easier on a random Thursday afternoon than on a busy weekend.   But HOW do you keep your little ones entertained 24/7? That’s lots of activities, crafts, and imaginary dinosaurs to pretend to be.   Good luck putting on make up too, why get ready if you’re not leaving the house and going to get apple sauce chucked at you anyways? Then finally, the second your husband walks in the door from work you’re lucky if you can actually pee alone.   When you are a stay at home mother you never get a day off or a break.

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            The working mom is harder, no the stay at home mom is harder…lets just face it they are BOTH hard! Motherhood is such a difficult and challenging journey. You no longer have just yourself to think about. Looking back at who I used to be in college and my early twenties, I had no one else to worry about but myself and I thought I was “tired” or “busy.”  Girlllll what were you thinking? As a mom, you maybe tired. exhausted. busy. but most of all you are HAPPY.  I wouldn’t change being a mom for anything-whether your working or staying at home we all share the same common goal to raise good people and we all have the same love for these little people.

Until Next Time…..

XOXO

Your Redlocks and Shamrocks Girl,

Lisa Doyle

***All of the photos for this blog post were taken at Symphony Park next to the Discovery Children’s Museum.   Get your Pogo Pass using code “REDLOCKS” for 60% off admission to this venture and several others around the Las Vegas area! For my original post of this pass, Read here