These Parents: Comforting our sick toddler.

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Mila has been sick all week with a mild cold that just would not quit that then turned into a sinus and ear infection. The first 2-3 days we were messes. She wasn’t sleeping at all and when she did sleep it was for 5 minutes at a time. Mila has always been a great sleeper so we weren’t sure how to handle it.
Over the past week though we have gotten this down enough that she is sleeping well and much more alert despite still being fairly sick. Here are the 10 tips that we got from others that have really helped us out! We aren’t Dr.s so don’t take any of our advice without checking with your own pediatrician 😉

1.Coconut Oil. Before bed we do a sippy of warmed milk with a spoonful of coconut oil melted in. She almost never drinks cows milk (only human haha) but it helps her sleep longer without getting hungry and the coconut oil coats her throat to avoid coughing fits.

2. Steam showers/ Bath. At night we just create a steam room to help loosen up congestion and hang out in there for 15 minutes. But in the morning I run a bath using the shower head (if that makes sense) so that the bathroom is steamy while we can hang out in the bath for 30+ minutes. She wakes up so crusty and gross its a nice new start to the day.

3. Eucalyptus Oil in the bath. There are mixed reviews on its safety. Like Vick’s Vapor Rub, it can cause breathing problems in little ones. So we dont use any at bed time. But first thing in the morning, we’ve found when putting 5-10 drops in the bath, it helps to clear out all the built up stuff in her lungs and sinuses.

4. Sleeping upright. I prop the pillows and sit upright and then hold mila in an upright position as if she were in her sling. Its the difference between waking every 5 minutes and only waking a couple times.

5. Homemade Saline. I found a recipe on the Food Network site of all places. But its just warmed salt water and I put 1 drop into each nostril before bed. One of our major issues is that Mila would get stuffed up and couldn’t nurse cause she couldn’t breathe through her nose. This helps keep her nose clearer.

6. Humidifier. We use the cool mist one from Target that looks like an elephant. Just be sure to clean it each day especially around the nose cause I guess germs can grow there like crazy.

7. Oatmeal. The B.R.A.T diet is great for the flu or tummy upset. But with the cold, we found that Mila just doesn’t have any appetite and its more a matter of getting her to eat anything. Oatmeal has been awesome since I can mix high calorie nut butters in with fresh fruit. And of course chicken noodle soup, but I could only get her to eat the noodles.

8. When in doubt, Advil. We know that a fever is the bodies natural way of healing, and with a low grade fever you don’t want to over medicate. BUT….there’s also just not wanting to see your child suffer. When Mila is very fussy and miserable looking we gave her Advil. We find that it works the best for her. We don’t ever buy the generic OTC medicines because I’ve heard they go through less testing than the original medicines. And while we do have the homeopathic alternatives in the house, they aren’t always as effective. So we stick to Advil.

9. Babywearing. DUH. But really, I had scaled back a lot on my Mila wearing. She’s getting bigger and I didn’t wanna screw up my shoulder again and so I’m trying soft structure carriers and looking at strollers. But a ring sling is her comfort zone and it helps me keep a close eye on her. So yeah we’ve been doing a lot of babywearing. Especially the tummy to tummy position.

10. Lavender. my friend Kate sent us some Lavender oil and it has been so awesome. I just mix some in with our honest company oil, and its awesome for a pre bed massage.

* Bonus Tip. Let all your “rules” go. Ice cream and watching a Dance Moms marathon. WHATEVER! She’s sick. Spoil them like crazy. What Mila wants, Mila gets. Even if its digging the ice out of my glass and throwing it on the ground.

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This Mom: Super Easy Pinup Hair and Makeup

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I’ve prepped my skin the same way I do most days. Moisturizer, primer, concealer, foundation. But instead of lightly setting, I’m going heavy handed with my pressed powder all over my entire face and neck, even over my eye lids and lips. I want everything super matte.
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Next I apply white eye shadow all over my lid just using my finger. But I really pat it on heavily on my lid below the crease all the way into the lash line.
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Then I press on a matte brown along the crease making a crescent shape. I really load up the brush, then blow on it. by pressing it on instead of brushing it I can avoid shadow flying all over the place.20140119-173545.jpg

It looks crazy at first but then take the time to blend it UPWARD! away from the white lid. and after if you need to re-apply white on the lid. You want there to be a clear lid vs crease. If you are darker skinned than me, which is like 99.9% of society, you may wanna use a dark brown nearly black or black shadow instead.20140119-173602.jpg

No matter how clean you are about applying, you’ll probably want to touch up under your eye and the area from the corner of your eye up to the brow. You want that brown area to sweep up cleanly so I take a large shadow brush and stipple a little of my foundation, let it set then put a little of my face powder over it. I also take this time to quickly fill in my brows. A thick dark brow is pretty key to this look. If you dont naturally have massive brows or if you have blonde hair here’s an awesome tutorial to get the look. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QKKcns3x2-4
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Next is one of the trickier steps. I line my eye using a angled brush and a paint pot. You can you liquid eye liner but a pencil wont work for this. The key is to go slow. 
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I start in the center of the eye that’s where I like the line the fullest. I do just the center on the left, then the right. I then line the corner not my dragging my brush, I just press it along the lash line. This is why I prefer a angled brush. Its more like stamping that trying to get the look perfect with one fluid movement. I just press the brush into the lashes using only the edge of the brush not the sides.
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EEk! And then I do the little cat eye flick upward last. and I go SUPER SUPER SLOW! with my nose practically touching my mirror. go thin and short and then build on it. I like a more modest line. Then I curl my lashes and apply my mascara before my false lashes.
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Then I put on the false lashes. they seem scary but omg they so arent. There are 101 tutorials out there with tips and tricks. some people use tweezers or special clips for false lashes. I just go for it. If you dont over think it and just place then right on top of where you lined your eye, you’ll be fine. Then I go over my liner with the same brush but use a black powder to kinda airbrush the line, fill in any odd spots and if the lash glue shows at, the eye shadow will cover it.
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I know they seem like a pain in the ass but come on. false lashes make a huge difference. I mean I’d never wear them just to go grocery shopping but for this look the are a key factor.
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The only blush I do is a baby doll pink (dolly mix) right on the apples of my cheeks and no where else. I blend a little but not much. NO BROZER OR HIGHLIGHTER.
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Lastly I apply red lipstick. I put on a lip primer but I didn’t line my lips or anything. I just carefully brush it on. The brush to the left is a typical lip brush but I dont think the shape actually works well to apply lipstick so I use a small eyeshadow brush cause I can fan it out and make a nice thin edge to it..trust me. a thin shawdow brush is way easier.
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20140119-173848.jpgOK, Now the hair part. Excuse the “photobooth” grainy selfies. I couldn’t hold bobby pins and a curling iron and bobby pins.
So first I pin my bangs back, using a little pomade. I don’t go too high, just a small pomp.
Next I spray my hair down with a protein heat protector.
Then on one side I grab a section of hair and roll it around, making a tube with a quarter sized hole. Roll the hair down like you’re using an invisible curler.
Typical victory rolls you’d be able to see the holes when facing forward, but I think that look can get a bit wacky if not done perfectly. So I just tip the rolls back so you can only see the hole of the tube of hair from a birds eye view.
I just use a couple bobby pins, one at the top of the roll and one at the bottom. Then I repeat on the other side.
Lastly I curl my hair with a 1 1/4 inch curling iron. there are a few different methods, But I hold the iron horizontally and roll up that way, flipping the hair out not under to make traditional curls instead of waves or loose curls.

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nd theres the finished looked! Its SO easy I swear. I mean I only use 2 eye shadow colors If you dont want to try the hair but then dont know what to do here’s an awesome cheat: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hln-UEvhJN0

This Dad: Makes a Dark and Stormy

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I’d like to begin this post by saying I’m a huge fan of Rum cocktails. I use a variety of spirits throughout any given shift at work, but I’m definitely stoked when someone comes in and tells me to make them something with Rum.

The Dark and Stormy is a very well known cocktail incorporating Black Rum, Ginger Beer, and fresh lime juice. The People at Goslings have gone as far as to trademark the name “Dark and Stormy” which calls for the drink only being made with their signature Black Bermuda Rum. That being said, this variation is not a true Dark and Stormy, but one that I feel gives the original a serious run for its money.

The difference in this cocktail is the introduction of Cruzan Black Strap Rum in place of Goslings. Cruzan is much darker, almost a jet black color. The flavor is extremely heavy on the molasses. It’s like sugarcane sprouted legs and ran over to kick you in the teeth. Definitely an amazing take on a traditional black rum.

I also insist on a quality Ginger beer. I feel Bundaberg, an Australian import is one of the best available.

So here’s what you’ll need:

-pint glass
-1oz fresh lime juice
-1 bottle Bundaberg Ginger Beer
-2oz Cruzan Black Strap Rum

Begin by pouring the fresh lime juice into your glass. Add ice.

Pour Ginger Beer until you are nearly to the top of the glass. Now carefully layer your Rum over everything.

Garnish with a lime wheel and enjoy!

-Justin

These Parents: Guide to Valentines Day

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Not all couples are into Valentines Day. And we get it, it’s a “made up holiday to sell greeting cards”. But we have always gone all out and have some wonderful Valentines Day memories. And some less than awesome ones haha! So we worked together to share some of our advice. Justin’s thoughts are first then Jill’s.

“Every Valentines Day I beg Jill for traditional pinup photos. But she quickly shoots the idea down, reminding me how expensive a photographer is. That she’ll need new lingerie. And to get her hair done. And by the end we’re looking at $400+. If you can swing it though it’s an awesome gift. I don’t think there’s a husband out there who doesn’t want sexy photos of his wife. Every man has a different idea of what sexy is but traditional pinup photos are a pretty safe bet. If you don’t have the budget to get professional ones, just an iPhone selfie sent while I’m at work with a “thinking about you” text is a close second.

Another gift that is always appreciated is a new bottle to add to the liquor cabinet. Champagne is a classic choice for Valentines Day but a thoughtful gift is something masculine just for him. Any Parks and Rec fan is familiar with Lagaluvin 16. It’s Ron Swanson’s drink of choice. And it’s dry, smokey, with a fair amount of spice, making it an ideal gift for him.”
– Justin

“Justin has always gone above and beyond for Valentines Day. Jewelry, Roses, etc.. But I really am hoping for some goodies from Lush again. Feeling relaxed and smelling amazing really helps me feel more romantic. Nothing kills the mood like spit up in your hair. Gross.
Another thing we do is instead of going out we send the girls to grandma’s while we stay in and watch a movie. In the past, I’ve thought a ‘romantic homemade dinner’ was a good idea. And an epic love story movie. But then I end up sleepy from a heavy meal or I’m crying cause the movie was too dramatic, etc.. What has worked best for us is popcorn and movie theater snacks and re watching a comedy like Anchorman we’ve seen 101 times so we can talk through it without feeling like we’re ‘missing the movie’. And spending time laughing together and enjoying each others company is really what it’s about for me.
I get that Valentines Day can be tacky, or if you’re single it can be annoying. But for married people with kids it can also be a great excuse for, sometime much needed, romance! I’d love to hear more gift ideas or fun traditions other people have! So feel free to share :)”

-Jill

This Mom: Rescues Her Tired Face

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I wasn’t planning on doing another makeup tutorial. It’s actually Justin’s turn next and he was going to talk about some of his favorite grooming products (stay tuned!) But I woke up looking AWFUL today. I ate tons of salty food yesterday so my face looks puffy, I stayed up til 2am watching The Fall on Netflix and I got a spider bite on my upper cheek (super gross on so many levels) So I thought I’d show my tips and tricks to saving my face on these days.20140112-163305.jpg

I keep spoons in the fridge for when my eyes are puffy. I’ve tried cucumber slices but it makes my eyes water like crazy. I just dome over one eye for a couple minutes then use the back of the spoon on that pouch under my eyes.20140112-163324.jpgNext I apply my strobe cream instead of my usual daily moisturizer. If you are unfamiliar with it, its a pearly lotion with micro-shimmer that helps even skin tone and makes the skin look brighter. I let that sit for a good 15 minutes before applying a brightening serum. I am on a mission to make my skin less dry and blotchy and these two products by mac help a lot. 

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When my skin is already angry at me I make sure to be super gentle when applying my products. Really we should all be this gentle all the time. I so often see wild lotion application and its just gonna make the skin more mad. 20140112-163351.jpg

Next I’ve applied my Armani Luminous Silk foundation is #2. cause its again great at evening skin tone and its very dewy looking so I look fresher. I touch up with my MAC moisture concealer just on the spider bite on my cheek. The Armani foundation is so good I really don’t need concealer anywhere else. 20140112-163408.jpg

I set with MAC divine nights Mineral Skinfinish in Centre of Attention. it warms up my skin all over and makes it looks so healthy and glowy! RUN AND GET SOME NOW!!!! ITS A LIMITED EDITION PRODUCT! I swear im not just trying to sell product. I was only at the MAC counter for a couple weeks and I hated every second of it and couldn’t wait to be transferred to a slower paced counter where I could actually get to know the customers. But I digress..20140112-163440.jpg

Next I tackle my eyes. I fill my brows in with a medium matte brown eye shadow just to keep the eyes soft looking. Then I apply a rose gold shadow all over the lid area. Lash line to brow. Then just go through and highlight with a matte white to give variation in texture. You dont want to do frosty frosty and more frosty or matte all over. I highlight right above the lash line in the center. under my brow on the brow bone. in the corner crease. AND I run that white shadow along the bottom lash line to make my eyes appear more open.20140112-163449.jpg

I achieved it all with just “strange” and “burnout” in the Urban Decay Naked 3 palette which is growing on me.20140112-163509.jpg

To keep the eye look soft I opt out of a liner and instead using a angled brush I press “factory” into the upper lash line. I then curl my eye lashes. Quick tip, I put my eyelash curler in my back pocket while I do my makeup so that it warms up. A warmed lash curler just works better. I’ve seen some heat theirs up with a hair dryer but I don’t go through that effort.20140112-163526.jpg

Next I apply MAC desert rose blush on the apples of my cheek. MAC modesty with a dab of Oyster Girl Lipglass (omg I swear Im not a MAC enthusiast. I just have been buying so much of it lately cause its affordable) Lastly I apply mascara just to the upper eyelashes because it helps keep my eyes looking open. It depends on the eye shape though. It also works for some people to do black on the top and brown on the bottom lashes.
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Ahhh SO much better. Not really a thrilling look but darn it if I don’t look way more alert than I actually feel.


Jill

These Parents: Visit the Fremont Troll

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20140104-164758.jpgToday we headed into Fremont in search of a last minute birthday present for my mom (her birthday is tomorrow so I wont be posting up where we went as to not ruin the surprise.) Casually, I mentioned to Justin I’ve never actually seen the Fremont Troll since its kinda a tourist thing and Im Seattle born and raised. But I secretly love pretending I’m a tourist to justify our taking tons of photos in public and getting stoked to see local things like the Pike Place Market or Gasworks.
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nyways, we walked up and as you can see Mila wasn’t impressed. She seemed a little intimidated actually so we kept it quick. I don’t know what I expected. I mean, she’s afraid of some stuffed animals, so a massive troll under a bridge was probably a bad idea.
Before heading home we stopped at Blue C for lunch. I expected Mila to hate it since it didn’t seem like a toddler friendly choice but we were starving and sushi is always quick. Luckily, I was pleased to see there were actually a lot of options now right up her alley. A soy bean puree with chips that was kinda like green hummus so naturally she loved it. And fruit already cut up into finger food sizes. They even had lids on the cups so she didn’t drench herself in water like she has many times before. Blue C has become way more family friendly since we used to take Lucy when she was a toddler. She’s eat the Mighty-O donuts and nothing else.
Hoping on a bus and heading to one of the other Seattle neighborhoods is without a doubt my favorite thing to do with the family. I just wish Lucy was with us. She spent the day with her aunt Lisa instead though. Next time 🙂

-Jill

This Dad: Takes His Family Out For Breakfast

photo (25)20140103-130857.jpg 20140103-130912.jpg 20140103-130926.jpg 20140103-130941.jpg 20140103-130955.jpgafterlight (36) 20140103-131011.jpg 20140103-131026.jpg 20140103-131040.jpg I look forward to days off to be with my family all week. One of our favorite things to do is take the girls out for breakfast. We walk through Greenlake on the way and both girls run off some of the energy they have bottled up from being indoors all week. The best spot is a dock that is secluded enough you’d never know we were just blocks from a major highway. We hang out and let Mila point out all the ducks. We though her first word was “cracker” but we now know she was actually saying “quack quack”. We then walk over to Beth’s Cafe. The walls are covered in crayon drawing and so the girls are easily entertained and like contributing with their own pictures. It’s also loud with people talking over the 1960’s soul music playing on the jukebox so should Mila fuss or cry we don’t have to stress that we’re ruining anyone else’s meal. We  relax and take our time and enjoy the meal. We watch Lucy take 5 minutes to eat a french fry and let Mila use spoons as drum sticks. We wait all week for days like this, we dont let it go to waste worrying about mess or manners. -Justin

This Mom: Does Mall Goth Inspired Makeup

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Mila dropped my makeup bag and shatter my blushes and bronzers. Which ended up working out in my favor cause it meant getting to get some more winter friendly shades. One thing lead to another and this is how I’m wearing my makeup today to just hang out at home with my family. Probably a bit much but oh well, new makeup days are the best.

For my skin I’ve prepped with a primer. Let that set and then apply MAC studio fix fluid foundation with my face brush. I put concealer just under my eyes. I let that set while I start my eye look.
All over my eye with a large shadow brush by Eco tools I apply bronzer. That 1990’s messy eye look turns out best with yellow and golden tones. The naked 2 palette works better for this then the rose tones in the naked 3.
Using a smudge brush I rim my eyes with a shimmery copper (chopper by urban decay) using that same smudge brush I apply a darker brown into the lash line (busted by urban decay) I highlight under the brow bone and corner of the eye with a very frosty silver (verve by urban decay) I then use a MAC angle brush to fill in my brows with brow zing. ALSO OMG! I NEED TO PLUCK MY BROWS! sorry it isn’t until you look at a massive photo of yourself blown up that you notice these things haha.

I normally set my face with powder, but this look can either go very matte OR like today, I kept it dewy. So instead I put a dime size amount of MAC strobe cream in the palm of my hand. Then I work that into a large blush brush. I go over my entire face with that giving it a pearly finish.
Then using that same brush I go over my cheeks with a mineral finish. And then apply my MAC bronzer along my cheek bones. I keep the look pale and don’t use any blush.
I then put on some Chapstick and MAC Diva lipstick. I’m really regretting not lining my lips first but I’m not actually going anywhere so it is what it is.

Lastly I curl my lashes and then apply mascara really working it into the roots of the lashes to give it an even more smudged look.