PacaPod Diaper Bag! Your perfect diaper bag search is over!

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Hello Moms!! It’s been a while and feels great to get back to blogging! I know one thing we all are constantly looking for is the perfect, functional and stylish diaper bag. Your search is over! My PacaPod diaper bag has been my life saver! If only I had this when my twins were born…. but even now at almost 4 it’s been my go to bag and put all other diaper bags to shame! Being a twin mom to boys I have SO much stuff to always lug around. They are almost potty trained but we still pack diapers, wipes, sippy cups, snacks and the occasional 25 matchbox cars…;)

Here is what is so unique about PacaPod. It has a unique 3 in 1 organization system that is easily accessible and mama friendly! It contains a changing pad and also thermal tote for bottles or sippy cups. We have even used the bags to hold other toys or items we needed as the boys are now a little older.

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My diaper bag is the Portland black style and I could not be any happier! Take it from me I think I have owned about 10 diaper bags already and I have found my favorite! I also love how stylish and sleek their bags are. It’s nice when both you and your husband can use the bag and also I have even used their bag to hold school stuff a few times:) So it truly is versatile!

diaperbag 4It comes with stroller straps!! Hands free!! An absolute mommy must!


In closing make sure to check out their website and have a look! Your diaper bag search is finally over!! XOXO

A few of my favorites…



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Shark Arrival and FAMILY 4 PACK GIVEAWAY!!- Sea Life Michigan



Aquarium at Great Lakes Crossing Outlets prepares for Jan. 29 Grand Opening


Today, SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium, the 35,000-square-foot aquarium in Great Lakes Crossing Outlets, welcomed one Nurse shark, three Blacknose sharks and two Bonnethead sharks to their new home, along with the enthusiastic winners of the Young Environmentalist contest—aged 8 to 12—standing by to cheer them on.


 The creatures arrived in a transport truck, and after some testing and preparation, were rushed inside via stretchers by trained aquarists. The sharks were then placed into a small, connected acclimation tank before swimming off into the main ocean tank.


 “Great care is taken in transporting the SEA LIFE animals,” said Curator Lucy Handel. “There is a trained crew of three in the truck checking water parameters at regular intervals, looking at ammonia levels, oxygen, temperature and pH.”

 Many of the other creatures, including Moray eels, seahorses and stingray, have already been delivered to the aquarium, with the remaining inhabitants arriving within the next week, allowing them time to settle in before the attraction opens to the public at noon on Jan. 29.

SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium will feature 22 tanks in highly themed, engaging exhibits, including a 180-degree ocean tunnel and interactive touchpools. SEA LIFE’s conservation messaging will be included throughout, inspiring guests to take an active role in protecting the world’s oceans and sea creatures.

Tickets to SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium are now available online at at special pre-opening rates.

I am a SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium Parent Ambassador! All opinions expressed are my own.  :)


I am so excited to offer the chance for one of my followers to win a package that includes: 4 behind the scene tour tickets, 1 souvenir guidebook and 2 gifts from the retail shop! I mean how fun is that!! The contest will end of January 24th and this is only valid at the Michigan aquarium. Good Luck! Click on the Rafflecopter Giveaway tab below to enter!

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A Christmas Wish..

It has been a hard couple months here at home. I lost my furry baby Callie Francis and a few weeks ago I lost my favorite person in the world my Papa. Death has always been something so hard for me. I cry like a baby if I see a dead animal on the side of the road, I could never walk past the person in the viewing at the funeral home. I just couldn’t see it…and then as life has it I actually was there to watch Callie and my Papa take their last breaths. As hard as it was I am so glad and almost feel honored and grateful that God let me be there before he took them home. My Papa was my whole life. He was there by my side through everything. He truly was my best friend, so much more than a grandfather. We facetimed every day and his life revolved around my boys and our family. For some reason when I was with my Papa life was better. All the pains of the world just went away. He could make me laugh no matter how sad I was, he taught me such life lessons in his 92 years of living. He was the strongest, kindest man I have ever met and will ever meet. I told him about a month ago when he asked what the boys and I wanted for Christmas, I said, “I only want you Papa, you are our present and Christmas will not be the same without you” It’s so funny how true those words are to me now, but at the same time I am so glad I told him that.

I felt I had to write this blog not only to reflect on my love for him but also as Christmas approaches us not only 2 days away I noticed something very special I had to share. I sat on my kitchen floor holding a bath towel and kitchen scrubber of his and just crying. The smell of his towel is something I never want to go away… I held onto the kitchen scrubber with all my might because I knew his hands were the last to hold it, and then I looked around my house seeing all the presents wrapped under the tree and it hit me how true this statement is…



So with all the hustle and bustle this year, remember it’s about the people around the tree not what is under it. Don’t take life for granted for a second I have learned how quickly it can be taken from you. Hug your loved ones, tell them how much they mean to you, and may you all have a very Merry Christmas.


Rest In Peace Papa… Till we meet again. Thank you for being my best friend you forever changed my life<3

PediPed Shoes Giveaway!!

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Guys! So I have a new shoe obsession and I literally am kicking myself for not finding this company sooner, but like they say..better late than never! PediPed footwear states they are the next best thing to bare feet and I have to agree! I have always struggled to find warm winter boots that kept the boys feet warm PLUS dry. Michigan winters can be so brutal and when I received our boots I knew my problem was solved! They are SO warm, insulated and have kept the boys feet so dry even in our wet snow days. They can easily put them on and velcro the strap across(twin mama bonus) and just love rocking their new boots! The quality was perfect and they are worth every penny! Knowing your children’s feet are happy is a must for me and I am so excited to try other styles! I mean if I had a girl those silver sparkle shoes… (I kind of want them in my own size!)


So now to the giveway! Head over to my IG page @2bearsandcounting for details and rules! You must follow us on FB and IG and one lucky winner will win a pair of #pediped shoes! I love giving back during the holidays and thank you to Pediped for allowing me this chance! Good luck everyone!


Fall Pictures(and yes I have a Shone Foto addiction;)

I just got back our family fall mini session from my photographer and had to write a quick blog post! Some might say (and do)… you take SO MANY PICTURES!! Well to answer that question you are correct:) I have to blame it on the blood first of all. My mimi was the original crazy picture taker way before social media or facebook or any of this. She just simply took ONE MILLION pictures and had them all in family albums. I remember being a young girl just sitting for hours looking at each picture, the detail in them asking her questions about each one. It’s more than a picture to me. It’s a snapshot and memory that is forever captured. As I sat back to look at these pictures, it was bittersweet. More sweet than bitter but just seeing how big the boys have gotten in 3 short years is just crazy! I mean at one time these two fit in a bucket together!! :)



I am truly just grateful to have gotten so many amazing shots of a family I prayed for my entire life. I look at these with such love and gratefulness more than I can put down in words.

They say, “All because two people fell in love”….



I couldn’t agree more<3




Thank you Meg for capturing the images and moments I dream of…

SEA LIFE MICHIGAN-Ocean tank fill event!




SEA LIFE Michigan, the 35,000-square-foot aquarium set to open in Great Lakes Crossing Outlets in early 2015, has reached a major construction milestone: filling the attraction’s 120,000 gallon ocean tank with water! 

 The filling of the ocean tank is a key landmark in our construction process and brings us another step closer to welcoming our array of awe-inspiring creatures. Our artists have worked tirelessly to create an exciting themed environment in the tank, including rock and coral formations, and a sculpture of Neptune’s head. All of this comes together to create a dazzling experience for our visitors that is unique to our location.

 To celebrate the water fill milestone, SEA LIFE Michigan hosted a brief ceremony on Friday, Oct. 24 at 10 a.m. featuring SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium Kid Reporter Nina Groll and other local children.

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 SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium will house more than 5,000 amazing creatures, including sharks, stingrays, jellyfish, sea horses, a giant Pacific octopus and much more. Guests will have a one-of-a-kind opportunity to get nose-to-nose with the creatures in the aquarium’s unique 180-degree ocean tunnel, interactive touch pools and engaging, educational exhibits that focus on conservation and inspiring guests to take an active role in protecting the world’s oceans and sea creatures. 


Advance tickets will be on sale on the SEA LIFE Michigan Aquarium website beginning in November. Check for more updates.


Calling all Sea Life Enthusiasts ages 8-12!!

How cool is this opportunity for your child??!! Do you have a Michigan child ages 8-12 who loves sea life? Here is a great opportunity for them to join their Young environmentalist panel!

Head to this site for details on how to enter! Good luck everyone! xo




It’s Coming!! Michigan Sea Life Aquarium!!



As a mom and a teacher, I am so excited and honored to be a Parent Brand Ambassador for SEA LIFE Michigan! I know what you are thinking… “There’s a family friendly aquarium coming to Michigan?!! The answer is YES! It will open in Auburn Hills at Great Lakes Crossing in early 2015! As a mom who has traveled to aquariums all over the state, I was SO excited to hear about this opening. I instantly began to follow them on Facebook and Instagram(links below) and was contacted by them to become a Parent Ambassador.

SEA LIFE Michigan is a family friendly aquarium with a focus on interactive fun. You will come nose to nose with sea creatures, like starfish, seahorses, sharks and stingray! It will also feature an interactive touchpool where your kids can hold a crab(Evan and Aidan will be ecstatic!) or even touch a starfish. How cool is that. I always tell my students parents and am a firm believer in experiencing things hands on… it makes it so memorable for your child and for you! They will also feature live feed shows throughout the day and more!

On September 23rd they had their groundbreaking ceremony! (I mean how cute that the kids helped to “break ground”!!SEA-LIFE-Aquarium-Groundbreaking-685x1024

Michigan is so ready and my entire family is counting down the days! As an ambassador I will keep you up to date on their up and coming exciting events in the near future so make sure to follow me and SEA LIFE Michigan on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for the latest updates!


My life was forever changed by Callie Francis..

As many of you know if you follow me on any of my sites, I lost my best friend and dog last week. Even writing the words seems unreal. She was 10 years old and did have heart disease, I had a scare almost 9 months ago but with medicine she was seeming to do better but as life has shown me, it’s all in God’s timing. I was there in our house on the floor with my hand on her and laying with her as she took her last breath. A part of me hates it as I can’t seem to get that image out of my head but then again I would never of wanted her to go any other way. The reason I am writing this blog post is I have written about my boys, fashion, teaching ideas, all things I love and am passionate about. So I knew the thing I loved the most would have to be written about.

callie6Callie was more than a dog. She was my best friend. For 10 years she NEVER left my side. She made me feel more loved and wanted than anyone in my entire life. If I cried she licked my tears, if I was upset she was right there. She just knew me….. Anyone who met her fell in love with her. It could of been her crooked smile when she got excited, the way she flipped on her back instantly or the love you saw in her big brown eyes. Callie taught me about a love that I never could of imagined. She brought so many stories, fun times, sleepless nights (as a puppy she refused to sleep in her cage so after day 2…;) she was in our bed, head on the pillow ever since). They say dogs leave footprints on your hearts and I couldn’t agree more. I believe a part of me died with Callie, my heart still aches and walking into our house has never felt so quiet or lonely. I still look for her to lick my legs when I get out the shower(picture below)



to run to the door when I get home, to be at my side when I am sad or happy, to fall asleep next to her stinky breath on my pillow… She was our family. She was our child and we couldn’t have been luckier to be her parents.



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I just felt I needed to write this blog to honor my best friend and the dog that changed my world. It changed my husbands, my boys and we are better people because of her. I know a day won’t go by that I don’t miss her, that I don’t ache for her to be here still and honestly I would give it all to have her back… but I know she is in a better place running free with my Mimi and eating all the chicken and doggie cookies she can find(though she was very picky and needed constant changing of her treats;) yep she was a princess, she couldn’t have been more loved and that I know as she took her last breath that I loved her with all my heart, that I did everything in my power to keep her alive as long as I could and that she was the best thing to ever happen to us. If you have a doggie at home, kiss them extra special tonight. Give them that extra treat and tell them you love them. Though I did that 1 million times, what I would give to do it one more time….

I love you baby girl…. I miss you beyond words



Back To School~ Staying Organized with little ones!

Tomorrow is the FIRST DAY OF PRESCHOOL for the boys! How did that even happen…. and not only is it their first day back but I head back to full time teaching after being off and home with them for 3 years. So one thing my husband and I knew that we would have to get organized to not lose our minds all year long:) Not saying that won’t happen but I am LOVING our new closet that was reorganized and the best part was it was so easy and cheap! I hope it sparks some ideas and feel free to share how you stay organized through out the school year.


This is our closet in our laundry room. For 8 years this closet has been such a waste of space, but with a few hammers and the work of my handy husband and VOILA! He just took the sliding doors off and then we went to work decorating it. We wanted a small bench to have the boys sit down if needed in the mornings, also a place that would keep their shoes together and classroom items.

IMG_30141I love these chalkboard signs that I found at Hobby Lobby. If you see the clips also have the days of the week so I figured it there was a certain day that needed a special note or attention I can clip it there.


I will use the middle basket to hold papers or art work that needs to be hung that week:) Also I love the star holders for their bag packs! Ikea was great for finding this bench/table. We threw a pillow and it all tied together!


Shops Featured: Bag Packs- Applepark Kids

Pillow: Tj Maxx

Bench: IKEA

Chalkboard signs, A and E letters, wire basket, Days of the week clips: Hobby Lobby


Share how you stay “Back to school organized”!!