Simple City Life

Friday, April 24, 2015

We are all Born with a Purpose #imbornto #MoDSquad



I am so excited about this post!!!!!  I am on a team of 39 moms (39 representing the weeks of a full term pregnancy) chosen to help promote and inform readers about the amazing work a very special organization is doing!  I had the honor this past Saturday to host a party with some of my closest friends to share about March of Dimes and the campaign, imbornto.  Imbornto acknowledges that  all babies are born to do something great and spectacular and they are not able to do that on their own. With 1 in 9 babies born premature every minute here in the United States, March of Dimes is helping babies to be born strong, healthy and to full term. Imbornto is a rallying campaign to see the collective hopes, dreams and aspirations lived out that we have for our babies and ourselves.  In my own words….Each one of us is born with a purpose! Isn't that awesome??!!!!

Okay so let me be honest, I knew NOTHING about March of Dimes before I started this blogging campaign and the more I found out about the organization, I was floored by all of it’s work and efforts. So here is a little back ground on the organization itself.  Founded in 1938 by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, of the March of Dimes original mission was to defeat polio. By 1955, with funding from the March of Dimes, the Salk vaccine had been developed and tested, followed by the Sabin oral vaccine in 1962, and polio was on it’s way to be beat!  For over 75 years March of Dimes has been a leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health and works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth, and infant mortality. The importance of  March of Dimes really hits home with living in a city like Milwaukee where the infant mortality rate is higher then some third world countries.  The overall rate for Milwaukee is 10.6 deaths per 1000. There was even  a write up in 2011 about the dark realities and statistics here in Milwaukee. My heart has been broken over the past week as I have learned more about the importance and need for March of Dimes and the imbornto campaign especially in our city! 



During the party I hosted we spent the morning talking about our own children but also since half of the ladies are teachers both in the inner city and suburbs we were all inspired by their stories of the little one’s in their classroom.  Our words soared of how these children are born to be leaders, to make us smile, born to care for their friends, born to be smart, born to change the status-quo, born to be adorable and how each one is born with a purpose.  This is why I feel so honored to be one of 39 bloggers helping promote this campaign.  The March of Dimes is inspired by all babies – those born healthy and those who need help to survive and thrive. These little one’s are what make the mission of this campaign so important. 






March of Dimes imbornto Mission:
~supports all important research into the causes and prevention for premature birth and birth defects;
~fights for health insurance for all pregnant women and children;
~pushes for expanded newborn screening that could save lives and prevent disabilities;
~reaches out to women with healthy pregnancy information and services;
~provides comfort and information to families with a newborn in intensive care.

So how can you help?  Head over to www.imbornto.com to learn more about the campaign. Go on  Facebook, Twitter, Instagram or Pinterest using #imbornto to spread the word.  You can also shop for Mother’s day specials through partners like Bonton, Mudpie, Kmart A&E Jewelers, Alex and Ani, and Ebay. A really easy way to team up is by sharing your love for mom and dad by uploading baby pictures on twitter with #THX2U and #imbornto. Martha Stewart Living will donate to imbornto with every picture uploaded. Also be sure to check back here at Simple City Life as I will be posting again about this fantastic campaign!  


Imbornto...inform you!
Abbie



* I am a blogger with the Motherhood and being compensated for my promotion of this campaign*

The Honest Company - Safe, Stylish, Convenient

Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Birthdays, Easter and Shoes Oh My! #UmiGiveaway

April is a month of celebrations for us. With plenty of family birthdays, spring break, Easter and Earth Day, we are busy bunch. It's great and so very festive and springy. Having these celebrations help pass the awkward weather. It's much like puberty this time of year, the weather cannot decide if it's ready for the change. Planning and hosting celebrations helps the time fly by. Raichlen started off the month by turning five. I told him he just wasn't allowed, but as we all know, four year old's never listen. No matter how much I bribed him, he still bounced out of bed and declared himself five. With those big blue eyes full of excitement, I of course allowed him to be five, but that's it, six is just not allowed. 


 After a little begging, I was able to put this clown in front of my camera. He was less than thrilled and I had about 2.5 minutes to try and capture his personality. Thankfully, he has a big one and was able to give me a great laugh and some fun shots! He just keeps getting more and more adorable and hilarious and yes, naughty. He wakes up with so much zest and energy each and every morning. He loves to snuggle all the time. He is spoiled by his sister daily and his brother would like to deck him by the end of most days, but in the end they are true buds. He has his own sense of style. It's bold, it never matches and I absolutely love it!
 When he isn't expressing himself through bold fashion choices, he loves to get all handsome. Which could not be more opposite from his brother. Getting Owen out of warm up pants and a t-shirt is near impossible these days. I pleased for him to wera his handsome shirt Easter Sunday and after much argument and a few tears, he managed to keep it on for a hour. Raichlen on the other hand had to be begged to remove his three piece suite in order to ride his new bike. Complete opposites these boys.
 Are they not the most handsome boys in the world? I know I maybe a little biased, but come on. I just love dressing up my little men. They were able to sport their new Umi's this Easter. I have been a long time fan of Umi shoes. The boys are always very excited to get their new shoes, and always wear them to shreds. I love that they are stylish, fun and have a great pop of color for your little guy. This season they have these two great styles shown, the Cruz and the Jett, as well as several others. I know that so many people get all bent out of shape over the limited amount of boys styles over girls, but in my honest opinion they have the perfect amount. Boys are much simpler and have zero patience for so many choices. I like quick decisions personally and love that Umi's line is 100% adorable, classic and quality, so weather I have 50 choices or 1, I know I'm getting a great shoe for my son's feet. And in the end that is all that really matters!

 Love these shoes? Want to get your littles all ready for spring and summer with some great shoes? Well, then all you have to do is enter below and you can win a 60$ gift card to Umi's!
Also Check out their Clearance Flash Sale at Umi! All Clearance styles $29.90. No code needed. Offer valid 4/21 & 4/22.

UMI Children's Shoes

Monday, April 20, 2015

Organics Matter, for you and for the Earth

This shop has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MyPicknSave #CollectiveBias

Shopping organically isn't a trend for us. I have been shopping the organic section for a very long time, we have a great relationship. Yes, there are times where it is pricey and it squeezes us and we have to make choices based on the budget. We pick from the clean fifteen and make the best decisions we can. Why do we make the sacrifice? Why is it a big deal for us to shop the organic section? The reason is that not only do we strongly feel organic food is better for us, it is better for our environment as well. The impact of non organic foods is still unknown. We are currently a walking experiment, the side effects of pesticides in our food have yet to be seen. I don't know about you but that is not ok with me. So many things are on the rise in our world, allergies, asthma, autism, cancers, autoimmune and many other physical aliments, is this normal or are we the product of a non organic, contaminated society. That is what I am not willing to risk, that is why it is 100% worth it to shop and put my money into the organic industry.
I care greatly about the earth and believe with all my heart that we are here as stewards of this earth. I do not believe for one minute that God is thrilled with the amount of chemicals used every year on our farms. I know not everyone is going to jump on board with me, but I do challenge you this earth day to explore and take a step forward to helping out environment as well as yourself! Remember that just organic food is not limited to just fruit, veggies and meat. You can also party and celebrate the earth organically too...with cake!
Today is my sweet firstborn's birthday! She is rockin' the double one's this year. I could not be more proud of this kid. She is approaching her black belt as a Taekwondo leadership student, she was recently accepted into a top Wisconsin middle school, is a great friend, babysitter, activist, pet owner, artist and helper. She may run circles around me daily, but no matter what she is my lucky penny. We are super excited to celebrate her tomorrow. And because she shares my same passion for the earth and environment, we will be make some delicious and mind you simple frozen organic pizzas as well as some of the best gluten free, non-GMO vanilla cake (Pamela's Products) you have ever had topped with Organic Blackberry Buttercream Frosting and a side of Stonyfield Organic Frozen Greek Yogurt. All purchased conveniently at our local Pick 'n Save, by using the shopper friendly health key system, I am able to quickly locate which foods are organic and gluten free- that is a life saver for this mom.

Organic Blackberry Buttercream Frosting

3/4 C. room temperature organic butter
2 C. organic powdered sugar
1 C. organic blackberries
1 t. pure vanilla

Place blackberries in a food processor (or blender). Puree, then place in a fine strainer over a bowl. Press on the solids to extract the puree leaving the seeds behind. Reserve the left over seeds for a delicious smoothie.
Place the butter, vanilla and blackberries into the processor. Process on low, adding the sugar 1/2 cup at a time until desired thickness. Lightly frost your cake. I like to use two 8 inch rounds. Start by frosting one cake top, then add the second cake on top of the frosted one. Frost a light crumb coat all over. It is best to remove a portion of frosting from the bowl in order to nor contaminate your frosting with crumbs. Once you have covered your cake with the cumb coat, place in fridge for one hour. The frosting will have firmed up enough to finish frosting your cake with out the worry of any extra crumbs.
Top with fresh organic sugared blackberries.

All of the ingredients can be purchased locally in Milwaukee at your neighborhood Pick 'n Save. This spring you can save big too with their Think Spring Sale featuring seasonal foods, just look for the signs! I especially love Pick 'n Save's Pinterest page- it is full of recipe ideas to help you plan out your next meal or celebration!

How are you celebrating Earth Day? Is eating organically included in your festivities?

~Courtney