I’m feeling all the love emojis right now as I get to share one of my favorite local skincare lines with you all. Dating back decades there have been harsh chemicals in most of skin products. These days wants to make steps in the healthiest, most beneficial direction and that means changing what we feed our bodies. We are *always* looking for the safest and most effective products for our delicate, aging skin and our precious babies (let’s be honest, if we all had marsupial pouches we would rock the heck out of them. Protective mama bears unite ✊🏼)
Say hello to Pink Hippo. First, I have an amazing *TRIED & TRUE* sunscreen to rave about. All the finest ingredients available are used to make this all natural, organic, mineral-based sunscreen. This is an extremely moisturizing SPF, it blends well into the skin, smells amazing, and won’t bleed into your eyes- (AKA the most annoying thing ever.) The 30 spf is tough enough for both of my fair-skinned babies.
Second is the deodorant that I LOVE! I’ve been using it for about 2 months now and I’m spoiled. I had tons of backup deodorant stock and tossed it all because I will never settle for anything else.
Who is the mama behind these magical products?
Nilufer Tanrikulu is a Chemical Engineer that has been working in product development or 27 years as a Research Chemist. Since having grandchildren, Nilufer was inspired to create safe and effective products for their use. With the help from her daughter, Yasemin Moore, Nilufer recently launched Pink Hippo Skincare. And let’s not forget daddy Tanrikulu- he is also a Chemist (how cute is that?) and has played a huge role in product development behind the scenes. Yasemin is part of my mom group and she is absolutely the best. Family is everything to her, and she’s deeply passionate about the well-being of Charlotte moms and families. The Tanrikulu family makes an unstoppable team, and it’s only the very beginning of something huge for their business. I am so excited to watch Pink Hippo grow and flourish in the QC.
But wait, there’s more! GIVEAWAY! I have not one, but TWO sets of PHSC ready to give two lucky winners 🎀🎉 To enter: Comment letting me know your go-to places in Charlotte to take the kiddos during the summer. Everyone’s always looking for ideas- even though summer will be gone in the blink of an eye 😱 #butthencomesfall …. GOOD LUCK! I will announce the winners on Monday morning!
• order your goodies at: http://www.pinkhipposkincare.com
Bear with me, I know the title has you wondering if I’m mentally stable right now… Random feelings that I felt compelled to share:
What if we woke up every morning and lived like it was New Year’s Day? New resolutions, our determination at an all-time high, the weight from our past lighter on our shoulders, I mean it’s awesome. Does it really have to only come once a year? Nah, brah.
And you can act like you don’t do the whole “resolution thing”… blah blah blah. Or in the words of Kristen Bell: “boosh*t boosh*t boosh*t” (Forgetting Sarah Marshall. If you haven’t seen it, stop reading right this very second and go watch. Not kidding, scat.)
Deep down we all have resolutions. In fact, they’re pretty dang similar every year. Things we want to change. That bottle of wine that’s calling your name every night after the kids go down. Your dreams that you aren’t putting into action because the fear of failure has paralyzed you. That one dark skeleton in your closet that eats at your soul. The extra weight you want so desperately to shed… anyone? Just me?
Here’s a tough, yet attainable challenge for YOU & for ME. Let’s wake up every morning like it’s a brand spankin’ new year. Because let’s face it. We’re so deeply caught up in the struggle of everyday expectations that we forget how blessed we are just to have been given this new day! Tomorrow isn’t promised. So let me get all cliché here for a moment: This very moment is the beginning of the rest of your life. The days are long but the years are short. So, cheers… Happy New Year! 🎉
Blink 182 “Take Off Your Pants and Jacket” album, 2001. Man. Those songs got me through some serious crap during the most emotionally vulnerable period of my life. But there’s something ironic about one of my favorite songs in history, Stay Together for the Kids. Growing up my mom was single, and she was happy being alone. My dad and stepmom were together since pretty much day 1 of my existence. I would go to my dad’s every other weekend for many years. I was a sensitive and quiet child. I missed my mama. My dad and stepmom would spoil me with all the gifts I could possibly imagine, they always one-upped my mom when it came to tangible crap. It was hard to appreciate anything when you could have everything you wanted. My friends were jealous, ha. Little did they know.
My assumption is that my parents were always trying to overcompensate and make up for…. what exactly? Oh yes, the fighting. I stopped wanting to go my dad’s house. When I was old enough to have friends over/sleepovers, I would beg- BEG my dad and Brenda (my stepmom) to please not fight in front of my friends. It was humiliating. Every single time, they promised. And every single time they almost immediately broke their promise. The fighting would get worse over the years, there was usually alcohol involved… and when I was 15 I went full-blown emo on their asses. Music was my escape, my medicine. Stay Together for the Kids rang so true for me because it involved struggling adolescents that want love and happiness from their parents. Only I didn’t want mine together. I would pray for them to separate. Pray for them to divorce and move on from each other. I told Brenda numerous times that if they divorced I would promise to always stay in her life. Nothing changed. It was too convenient to stay married, apparently, and at my expense. My father died at 58 from a heart attack. Together as the toxic couple they were, I truly believe they were killing each other.
Flash forward to my own marriage. I’m 100% sure I’m married to the love of my life. If I divorced Tim, I could never see myself remarrying. But when it comes to us, I despise even the mentioning of the “D word”. However, we’re currently separated and living in separate homes. It freaking sucks. You know what else sucks? Being an adult. The first few years of marriage and the first few years of parenting. It’s all so hard and simultaneously amazing. The joy is overwhelming, the stress is overwhelming. During this time away from my husband, we are focusing on strengthening our relationship with Christ, seeking marriage counseling, and taking proactive steps to improve ourselves individually. I KNOW, based on the experiences from my childhood, that I will never let my babies have to go through what I went through. And I’m learning that my marriage is not my father’s marriage. I can’t expect my life to be what I grew up with. We love our babies more than anything in this world, but we aren’t staying together for the kids. We’re staying together because we made a vow to love as The Lord loves us, until death do us part. We’re staying together because we choose to focus on our blessings, and not our hardships. Sometimes two people have to fall apart to fully realize how much they need one another.
As someone that suffers from anxiety and depression, I know the idea of “happiness being a choice” can be rather maddening. Depression is a real thing. No doubt. Anxiety is real, and it’s so hard on mamas. So, if it’s a choice, you’re saying I’m “choosing” to be depressed?! Nope. Not cool and not true.
However, there are some choices I’m making for myself that DO help. Let me explain.
In church this weekend I heard these words and they stuck: “When you decide to break free”. Break free from what? What could I possibly decide to break free from? Woe is me, right? What about that longtime friend that I had to sever my relationship with for my own wellbeing? Am I still struggling over that? Yes. Did I make the right decision by saying goodbye to that person? Yes. Do I have the choice to forgive and move on? Of course I do! What about that thing my husband did 4 years ago that I still lose sleep over sometimes? It was 4 freaking years ago. I forgave, and forgave, and forgave again. I’m still allowing this to consume me? Come on now, Anna.
This is where the choice comes in. I’m not where I want to be at 30 years old. Do I still have great potential? How many blessings can I count for myself? The list is endless. I’m blessed just to be here on this earth, living another day. So why, oh why, would I waste my time letting my negative thoughts fester and make me believe I’m worthless? Screw those thoughts. The choice has to be made for every area of your life in which you are struggling. Sometimes I’m anxious and squirrelly and not even sure why. When I stop and try to identify why I’m feeling that way, 4 times out of 5 I realize that it’s not that important, and I need to calm my butt down. Sometimes I wake up and my day starts going completely wrong. From the start. But from the start, did I pray and read scripture, or jump on social media?
Almost everything is a choice. It’s a constant reminder that I may have to make for myself 100 times a day, in 100 different ways. But not only is this possible, it can become habit. These choices can become so habitual that they carry on into your daily life, and the rest is left behind. Your thoughts become just that- thoughts. They will no longer have the power to navigate your actions and control your life. Start making your choices.
“Success is the sum of small efforts, repeated day in and day out.” -Robert Collier