Sacramento Zoo

Last month we visited the Sacramento Zoo. We went a year ago when Grey barely started walking and knew we had to come back when he was a little older. I guess he wasn't old enough because he was wary of all the animals and too enamored with the train we saw at the entrance...

...that we ended up riding because LOOK AT HIM.

The zoo itself is pretty small. I mean, it's no San Diego zoo, but you could probably walk the whole thing in an hour, maybe an hour and a half. If it's worth $35 to you, I say go for it! I think we'll be stretching our next visit a little longer.

Grey spotted a life-size cut-out of a red panda to the left of us and hurried us away to safety. Whew!

The chimps are always a delight. The last time we were here, one of 'em pooped and flung it at the windows. Evolution, amirite.


(I'm a mean and cheap mom.
And by mean and cheap, I mean super fun.)

Quick and Easy 3-Ingredient Paleo and Gluten-free Dessert

You'll need:
  • 1 cup of sliced strawberries (or however much you want)
  • 1 tbsp maple syrup (or however much you want. I may or may not add a little more...)
  • 2 tbsp almond meal (or however much you want)

  1. Microwave for about 30-45 seconds.
  2. Drizzle in maple syrup and almond meal.
  3. Mix.
  4. Enjoy.
  5. Make seconds.
  6. You're welcome.

How I Potty Trained My Toddler

This past week I finally bit the bullet and committed to potty training Grey. We've been sitting on this (hehe) for a few months with only TWO successful incidents. I've researched the Internet, books, articles, all that jazz. I am totally a potty expert now..

I took three days off work and had a three-day weekend to potty train Grey. I wanted to do it during the week when he wasn't going to daycare where he wore diapers and didn't think a weekend was long enough. Make sure to potty train when there is nothing big happening!

     1. Before you start, you need supplies.

Grab your kid and tell him you're going to Target. YAY!! On our way to the store, I told Grey over and over we were getting him snacks/candy/potty treats for when he used his potty. That got him excited! I let him pick out his own..

How to Make Your Marriage (or Relationship) Work

Still reading "The How of Happiness." I'm usually a faster reader than this, but I think since this is an informatively dense book, it's taking me longer to read it. And all that introspection takes a lot of mental energy and cookies. Had to squeeze in some a lot of Netflix breaks to numb the brain a little... Hehe..

One of the sections in the book discussed how to invest in relationships, specifically marriages/partnerships since most people end up in one. This is definitely something Chase and I need to work on as newish parents. I thought marriage was hard before we had a kid. It is now 1,000 times harder. Yes, that is the exact statistic. The book shares some tips I highlighted below on how to make your relationship last.

Gratitude Begets Happiness

I'm currently reading the book "The How of Happiness" to aid me in my happiness project. They give you a few tests throughout the book and one of them was the Person-Activity Fit Diagnostic - it measures the top four activities that would be the best fit for you. You can take yours here. My results were:
  1. Committing to your goals
  2. Expressing gratitude
  3. Savoring life's joys
  4. Doing more activities that truly engage you

One of my goals is actually to be more aware of my blessings. (How fitting to the above!) The author discusses how gratitude affects happiness in more detail in her book. I highlighted those reasons below (4.83-84):
  1. "Grateful thinking promotes the savoring of positive life experiences."
  2. "Expressing gratitude bolsters self-worth and self-esteem."
  3. "Gratitude helps people cope with stress and trauma."
  4. "The expression of gratitude encourages moral behavior."
  5. "Gratitude can help build social bonds, strengthening existing relationships and nurturing new ones."
  6. "Expressing gratitude tends to inhibit invidious comparisons with others."
  7. "The practice of gratitude is incompatible with negative emotions and may actually diminish or deter such feelings as anger, bitterness, and greed."
  8. "Gratitude helps us thwart hedonic adaptation." (← our natural ability to adjust to changing circumstances)

In the book, the author suggests writing down what you are grateful for once a week and I'm challenging myself (and you!) to blog every week of what I'm grateful for....starting tomorrow.

Book Report: "On Becoming Toddler Wise"

As Grey is growing and learning more about himself and the magical stage of talking back to his sole providers, I am having a difficult time not putting him up for adoption. This parenting business is NO. JOKE.

I read the Baby Wise book that Shelia gave us when I was pregnant in L.A. and it changed our lives!! That and Happiest Baby on the Block. (I bought my sister and her husband both.) Total game changers, I tell ya. Naturally, I had to check out the Toddler Wise book.

There were quite a few note-worthy tidbits I wanted to share with you other mamas if you are like me and not a toddler whisperer. I'll share my notes with you guys.. Wink.

What I bought at 2 AM this morning while half-asleep..

  1. Tahari tank top from ThredUp (Get $10 off thru my ref link!)
  2. Calvin Klein tank top from ThredUp
  3. J.Crew tank top from Twice (Get $10 off here too!)
  4. Gap racer-back tank top from Twice
  5. Clarks Daelyn Towne platform flats | $100

Lots of gently used tank tops. I currently have three that I wear in rotation, AKA whichever smells the least, so I desperately needed more for this hot and dry California weather. Plus, I gotta show off my guns.

But let's talk about THOSE SHOES. How awesome are they?!? It was time for a replacement and I wanted to switch things up from plain old boring flats from yesteryears and, while half-asleep, chose these! My languid self is pretty badass..

Edit: Only liked #3 and #4. Ended up returning the shoes. (Too granny...) If anyone wants tank tops #1 and/or #2, let me know! I'd be happy to ship them to you!
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