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Kids Motherhood

Our Back-to-School Checklist

Back-to-School | Styled Her Life

The Back-to-School countdown is real. One of these days I’ll become the person who “stays ready” but until that day I’ll just work on not being the person who waits until the last minute to do…everything. Baby steps. To keep myself on track, I broke down what I need to do for the kiddies to get ready for Back-to-School. Two checklists for two kids in two different schools…and maybe a half day preschool program, though we’ll see. Make sure you grab the download at the end of the post and find your happy place checking off things as you go!

  • Make any outstanding doctor’s appointments. Especially for those kids entering a new school or heading to school for the first time. Don’t find yourself rushing around at the last minute trying to schedule that annual physical or dentist appointment.
  • Organize any medical and school records from previous year. Again, especially for those heading to new schools. Last year my son’s transcripts mysteriously went missing and we couldn’t get him completely registered without them. Not fun.
  • Buy all school supplies for school AND home. One thing that happens to me every year is that we buy all the supplies, send the kids off for the first day, they come home from school with nothing to do their homework or assignments I give them. Make sure to grab a few supplies while shopping to keep at home.
  • Buy school clothes. Thankfully we have uniforms in our district. With these growing boys I couldn’t imagine having to buy full out school wardrobes! Yikes.
    • Uniforms or regular clothes
    • Undergarments
    • Sneakers/Shoes
  • Purchase any other necessities your child may need. Backpacks, lunch boxes, umbrellas…a phone case for your tween O_O–can you tell I’m not ready? But seriously, I always forget umbrellas until a day when it rains. Don’t judge me.
  • Establish a bedtime routine. With the oldest heading off to a new school, a new schedule different than his siblings is on the agenda for the new year. Not to mention the kids have been living their lives this summer. No routine to be found so we’ll be phasing this in slowly within the next couple of weeks.
  • Introduce or change kids chore schedule. This summer was the first time we implemented real chores with allowance. I’ll share more about our chore schedule in another post but to give you an idea, everyone is involved. Even the almost 4 year old so regardless of your kids ages, starting chores or updating current chores is perfect for back to school season.
  • Discuss (and decide if you can) on what extracurriculars the kids will be involved in. My middle son is already screaming basketball and soccer. Swimming lessons are on the agenda because I said so. And the oldest is on the clock to offer up some suggestions before we choose for him ;).
  • Prepare a supplementary program for each child. I’m a firm believer that education starts at home. The past few years I have always had some kind of curriculum or program on hand to supplement what the kids were doing at school. This is especially important for our black children as our history isn’t always told right or at all in school. If you’re not into finding and creating your own program there are many options you can grab from your local bookstore or even Target which is were I got a yearly curriculum for last year for each child by grade.
  • Identify where you plan to help at school. You already know I am an advocate for parental involvement. It’s essential. Go into the school year with an idea of how or where you want to help before the year starts. Have a couple ideas on hand and make this a priority!
  • Buy a planner and schedule out the school year beforehand. Most districts should already have the updated academic calendars posted and be sure to check your individual school sites as well. Just get all the dates locked in early.
  • Finish all summer reading projects. While my 2nd grader didn’t have one to do, I created one for him so we’ll still be making sure he finishes well before the summer is over. The middle schooler has a full report due and we will not be starting off the year racing against the clock!
  • Create an organization area in your home where you’ll keep all the kids information, handouts, etc throughout the year. Once that first day comes you’ll be getting stuff non-stop so plan ahead so you don’t find yourself with papers, supplies, and who knows what else all over your house!

Hope this helps you get organized for busy Back-to-School season before the month gets away and remember click below for the printable! ~xoxo

Back-to-School Checklist

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Back-to-School Pin
In Philly Motherhood

20 Free Things to Do With Kids in Philly This Month

20 Free Things to Do With Kids in Philly This Month

Back at it again! This post is a couple days late because life but with a full month and some change before the kiddies head back to school, I’m still spending my days doing budget friendly activities the whole family can enjoy. I put together this list, not quite as intense as last month’s, but more specific in terms of what kinds of events and a little about each to make sure you’re choosing things your kids will love :). Have fun!


Because when you can blend learning with play, everybody wins! 

Friday, August 5: Check out the Science at Play Story Fair at the Chemical Heritage Museum from 5pm – 8pm.

Saturday, August 6: Hike through the trails with Nature Exploration @ the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education at 10:30 – 11:30am.

Monday – Thursday, August 8 – 11: Civil Rights Stories with Mighty Writers from 4pm- 6pm *for Philly students ages 14 – 18.

Saturday, August 13: The whole family can learn all about water with the Water Explore: Outdoor Tour @ Smith Memorial Playground from 11am – 12pm.

Saturday, August 20: Play and learn at the Tall Trees Nature Playdate @ Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education from 10am – 12pm.

Sunday, August 21: Learn about screen printing and create some political art with the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Family Program from 2pm – 4pm.


Every Wednesday at 4pm enjoy storytime at Barnes & Noble Rittenhouse!

Wednesday, August 3: Your little one will love Noisy Storytime.

Wednesday, August 10: Take a trip with a fish with Fishies Storytime.

Wednesday, August 17: A story about clouds. Look Up There Storytime.

Wednesday, August 27: Learn what happens at a barn with Barnyard Storytime.

Wednesday, August 31: Ready or not, Fall is Coming Storytime.


Even though summer is almost over you can still catch a few festivals.

Sunday, August 7: Come see performances, listen to music, check out the crafts and marketplace at the PECO Multicultural Series: ACANA African Festival @ Penn’s Landing from 2 – 8pm.

Sunday, August 21: Celebrate Caribbean music, culture, and food at the PECO Multicultural Series: Caribbean Festival @ Penn’s Landing from 12pm – 8pm.

Outdoor Movies

We don’t step foot in a movie theater all summer when Philly gives us all the best screenings around. 

Thursday, August 4: It’s still summer but catch Captain America: The Winter Soldier down Penn’s Landing at 8:30pm

Saturday, August 6: Let the Force Be with You! Catch Star Wars: The Force Awakens at Franklin Square from 7p – 11pm.

Thursday, August 11: Say it three times! Catch Beetlejuice at Penn’s Landing at 8:30pm.

Thursday, August 18: Gather all the feelings and catch Inside Out at Penn’s Landing at 8:30pm.

Saturday, August 20: Bring your magic carpet (aka blanket) and catch Aladdin at Franklin Square from 7p – 11pm.

Thursday, August 25: It’s the movie everyone was talking about this year! Catch Zootopia at Penn’s Landing at 8:30pm.

Back to School

Please pass this event along to someone in need of school supplies for the upcoming school year!

Monday, August 15: Have one last summer party at the Back to School Bash @ Bridesburg Boys & Girls Club from 2pm – 4pm. The first 1,000 students to attend will receive donated backpacks full of school supplies.

Parks & PopUps

By far the easiest and cheapest thing you can do this summer is check out all the free playgrounds and pop up parks the city has to offer. These ones have been frequently visits for us. 

Spruce Street Harbor Park

Eakins Oval

Full list of Philly Playgrounds

List of Philly Spraygrounds

Not Quite Free But Super Cheap

Remember these events happen every month on the first Wednesday and first Sunday so if you can’t catch them this month, be sure to try in September!

Wednesday, August 3: First Wednesday’s at Please Touch Museum! Only $2 admission from 4pm – 7pm.

Sunday, August 7: Pay what you want at the Philadelphia Museum of Art first Sunday of the month.

With my favorite season just around the corner I’m getting a head start on September’s events. Hey, just because the kids will be back in school doesn’t mean we have to stop the fun. Get your Free Things to Do with Kids in Philly calendar for September before everyone else when you sign up!

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Kids Motherhood

100 Days of Summer: Free Fun

100 Days of Summer: Playgrounds + Other Free Fun

I’m in one of those spaces where it’s both hard to believe that August is just around the corner and feeling like this just might be the longest summer ever. I read an article on Scary Mommy about a woman who felt SAHM’s tricked her by not telling her how hard it really is and I am feeling every bit of that as WAHM this summer. Like…what is this life?! There’s always so much to do and nobody told me it would be this hard. Let’s just say, I’m looking into part time preschool programs for the toddler in September because mama needs a break so I can actually work. Yup. A break so I can work.

Still, I wouldn’t trade this summer for the world. Spending time with the boys is priceless and having the flexibility to do all the things has allowed for some really awesome experiences–and a few sleepless nights racing against deadlines but I suppose that’s part of the package ;).

100 Days of Summer: Playgrounds + Other Free Fun

Budget friendly has been the name of the game around here and we’ve been taking advantage of all the free stuff Philly has to offer as well as creating some memories of our own at home. Discovering new parks, checking out local events, visiting our season favorites, is how we spent the month of July. And when nothing was on the schedule, the water hose is always an option.

100 Days of Summer: Free Fun

How’s your summer going? ~xoxo

Motherhood Travel

A Few Days in Seven Springs: SPAC Conference Recap

Happy Monday! It’s been an exciting, educational, and exhausting couple of weeks over here and I’m beyond ready for a few days of relaxation. Who am I kidding? Work, kids, and life is the on the agenda for me but a girl can dream ;). Last week the fam and I got to spend a few days in the beautiful Pennsylvania mountain town, Seven Springs. I was invited to the PA State Parent Advisory Council Conference and luckily the whole family was able to come with me! I live for work/play trips and anytime they are able to travel with me is a good time.

The conference took place at Seven Springs Mountain Resort in Seven Springs, PA. About a 4 hour ride from Philadelphia. Before we get into the conference deets, let’s get into these views. Simply gorgeous!

Seven Springs Mountain Resort

Seven Springs Mountain Resort

Seven Springs Mountain Resort

The SPAC Conference is a two day statewide conference geared toward helping parents who are invested in their kids education both in and outside of school and parents who are–or interested in becoming–parent leaders in their communities. At my boys school, a Philadelphia public school, I’m super involved. I serve as the VP of our schools advisory council, publish a monthly newsletter, and volunteer wherever and whenever I can. When I found out the family was invited to attend the annual conference, I was beyond excited.


Over the past year since we’ve been part of our northeast Philly community and with the boys in public school, I have definitely taken on a new outlook when it comes to my children’s education. At first, I was overwhelmed and uninformed. Moving from the ‘burbs to the city, all I heard were the horror stories about public school system and wanted nothing to do with it. I had never had to do so much research, to ask so many questions, to advocate so much for my kids education before. And to be honest, I looked at the whole thing as something to get through the year and find either a charter or private school for next year. But, getting up close and personal with the inequalities in our education system ignited something inside me. It wasn’t enough to just make sure my kids were getting the education and opportunities they deserved, but I wanted to help all children, especially black and brown kids get them too. It started with volunteering at my son’s elementary school and once I learned about this conference I knew this would be the perfect opportunity to figure out what more I can do, network with other parents doing this work, and learn strategies for educating my kids at home.


Sooo much. With over 40 workshops available over the course of two days I learned a ton. I have a notebook full of takeaways but for sake of the blog I’ll go over big ones.

  • Literacy is essential. This was a main focus of the conference. Some of the data we got to review was both mind blowing and heartbreaking. To see in plain view the gap between the reading levels of Blacks and Latinos vs. White people and how that affects every area of achievement over the course of a lifetime emphasized how critical literacy is to both academic and life success. The takeaway: Literacy matters! What are we doing about reading in our schools and at home?

  • Family involvement is crucial to academic success. Family engagement is one of the main things I wanted to learn more about. If there is one thing that I have learned this year it’s that when families are involved at the school, things get done. At the conference I learned just how deep that goes. Higher graduation rates, students are less likely to be involved in criminal behavior, suspended or expelled, more likely to be involved in extracurriculars and to go to college. The takeaway: Grow family engagement! How? By meeting family needs. 

  • Parent leadership starts at home. The last day of the conference I attended a workshop on Parent Leadership and it was basically designed for the goal setting, planner geek in me. We learned about creating vision statements and goals for the family like you would for your personal life or business. Now, as a girl who is serious about her goal setting I never thought to do something this on a family level before.  We also learned about the characteristics of a great leader and a not so great leader…let’s just say I think we all have some room for improvement ;). The takeaway: If you’re a parent, you’re a leader. Be intentional and specific in leading your children. 


I love how from the moment we stepped into the resort it was all about literacy and education. The boys got to choose three free books each, while the parents got to choose from an assortment of parenting guides. I chose Achieving Success in Middle School (still dealing with the reality that we will have a middle schooler in a month), School Community Involvement, and Social Media and Internet Safety. We also got two board games, perfect for our newly implemented Family Game Nights and two swag bags packed with school supplies. Yessss. On the second night of our stay we attended a program where we got even two educational kits from innovative educational solutions company Really Good Stuff. We’ve literally replaced hours of previous screen time with the games in these kits. Cutting back even more and adding more time spent reading, learning, and family activities is what we’re focused on in the coming months so this was right on time!

Overall, the SPAC Conference was a really awesome experience and I’m ready to head into the school year with a ton of ideas and support to really make a difference. ~ xoxo

Kids Motherhood

100 Days of Summer: Parks with Sprinklers

100 Days of Summer | Styled Her Life

I was having one of those kind of days. A ton of client work, restless kids, and a messy office which was wreaking havoc on my ability to focus on getting anything done. It was also an irritably hot and humid afternoon right after a long holiday weekend. Though, if I’m being honest, weekends and weekdays all mesh together these days. In my mind though, I was having a tough time getting in the flow of things.

An hour or two before the hubs came home from teaching class–hip hop with an energetic group of kids–to bless me with maybe 5 glorious minutes of silence and solitude before dinner prep began, the toddler and the middle one had a shouting match. This probably was the third one of the day.

We’re going to the park!

I love how the park has this magical effect on my boys at this age. My wallet loves it too. City living has given us a handful of choices within walking distance and the dreamy ‘burbs just outside walking distance provide us with a few more along with hiking trails, creeks, and abundant greenery (hello nature walks and lunch in the park). We settled on the one 2 minutes away because, tired, hot, humid.

I was ready for the energizing bliss of the park with boys. The older ones would shoot some hoops, the little would run around, I’d catch up on a podcast while pushing a swing. Little did I know, the levels of magic were about to increase by a million. Why?

They. Had. Sprinklers.

100 Days of Summer | Styled Her Life

What I thought would be a quick 20 – 30 minute park trip turned into over an hour. The little things they enjoy, watching them play together, having the flexibility to witness it all. These are the moments that make it all worth it <3.


Life Motherhood

Raising Black Boys in America

Raising Black Boys

Interrupting the regularly scheduled programming to get real. It seems weird that just yesterday I was posting about things like salad and today I’m struggling to find the words to express how it feels to be a black person, a black mother, with black sons, in America. I almost didn’t write this. Seemed out of place in a space where I’m dedicated to inspiring but, this place is also one to share my story. And this is part of it. This is part of my reality and others who look like me. So here we are. What a difference a day can make.

Just a couple days ago we were “celebrating” Independence Day. A day that I’ve been celebrating my whole life without much thought but in recent years, in recent “wokeness”, the day has lost what little significance it had on me. Today, the truth that we weren’t free on July 4, 1776 and we aren’t free now, isn’t just a thought provoking tweet, it’s the cold, hard truth.

As children, and especially black children that are now black millenial adults, we grew up in a time where, for lack of better words, black people were sleep. We were the children of post civil rights era kids. Black people on a whole were gaining more access to spaces and places and the word “progress” was like a real thing that people believed. As toddlers we had no knowledge of tragic attacks on our communities like the MOVE bombing in Philly. As  school-age kids we experienced from afar with little/no understanding, through the same lens I suppose my boys have today, uprisings like the Rodney King riots. By time we were preteens and teens unless you were raised in a conscious black household, “equality” was this imaginary idea that seemed pretty legit. By our young adult years, we even had a black president.

All of this led to a period of time in the black community, speaking from my own experience, where we were comfortably sleeping, resting in our “progress”. I can’t say when it happened for sure, but for me, in 2012 my place, my reality got real clear. That year my husband and I marched with our black babies wearing hoodies, eating skittles, reluctantly waking from our slumber #trayvonmartin. In 2014, I scrolled my Twitter timeline in horror as I saw the lifeless body of a black teenager on the ground for hours #mikebrown. And shortly thereafter, watching in terror the murder of a black boy, just a year older than my son is now, by police #tamirrice. In 2015, it became clear that not only were my black husband, black father, and black sons targets in this country, but myself, a black woman as well #sandrabland. And in 2016, I saw the horrific video of a black father’s execution play in a neverending loop on social media #altonsterling.

With each of these hashtags (and the countless others between them #ericgarner #freddiegray #rekiaboyd #oscargrant the list goes on) I grow more and more terrified. Not for myself, although, #natashamckenna. But, for my black sons. For my black husband. For my black sons who need their black father. I look at my boys and to me, I see nothing but greatness. My oldest with the kindest spirit I have ever encountered. My middle son who has plans to change this world. My youngest full of vibrance and shine. I look at my husband and see a role model. A stark contrast to the images the media loves to portray regarding black fathers. I see promise, I see potential…I see black skin, which I know means they see a target, and that shakes me to my core.

When I dreamt of having children, and even as I embarked on this journey of motherhood, I knew challenges would await me. However, nothing could have prepared me for this. Raising black boys in a country where the very people who are tasked to protect them, see them as nothing. People who have no regard for black lives, black children, black men, or black women but have the authority and power to take those very same lives. Usually without any regard or consequence.

To put it in simpler terms the message you’re sending here America is that it’s okay, black lives don’t matter, to you…

You can’t prepare for that. You can’t handle that on a daily basis. But yet, that’s my reality. I wish I had the answers. Some comforting words. Some plan of action. I don’t. I just have my prayers. From my lips to His ears. For my black sons and yours. Their black fathers and our black husbands. #BLACKLIVESMATTER.

With blessings and love. ~ xoxo

In Philly Motherhood

30 Free (or Super Cheap) Things to Do with Kids this Month in Philly

The boys have been home less than two full weeks and we’ve already went through the “I’m bored” phases as well as the “You will not be playing on your ipad all summer” discussions. I’m still getting the hang of this WAHM during summer vacation thing so for July I wanted to be prepared. My biggest challenge had been finding inexpensive things to do because 1. Three boys and 2. we’re on a budget. I had already compiled a list of resources and sites to find free things to do in the city but sifting through that list everyday made me anxious (what else is new). So in an effort to streamline the anxiety and be the super planner I am, I put together a guide by day of free (or super cheap) kid things to do for the month of July in Philly. And since sharing is caring, here you go! All events are FREE unless a price is listed. Happy July!

Free Things to Do in Philly with Kids

1. Saturday, July 2: Free admission to the National Constitution Center and the Powell House.

2. Sunday, July 3: Historic Philadelphia Block Party from 1 – 8 pm on 5th and 6th Streets between Market and Chestnut.

3. Monday July 4: Party on the Parkway of course from 12 – 10pm on the Ben Franklin Parkway.

4. Tuesday, July 5: LEGO Club at Free Library of Philadelphia 2pm for ages 5 – 15 (Tacony Branch) *check your local branch to see what activities are available throughout the summer.

5. Wednesday, July 6: Please Touch Museum admission only $2 from 4pm – 7pm on the first Wednesday of the month.

6. Thursday, July 7: Spend an afternoon at Franklin Square.

7. Friday, July 8: Group Sculpt at Spruce Street Harbor Park from 5:30 – 7:30 pm. Giant mountains of clay for all? A good time.

8. Saturday, July 9: Summer Festival at Fair Hill from 2 – 7pm. Games, crafts, animal petting, free books and music.

9. Sunday, July 10: PECO Family Jams: Mosaic Medallions at Philadelphia’s Magic Gardens from 12 – 4pm. Create your own mini-mosaics and get a tour. Make sure you mention PECO Family Jams!

10. Monday, July 11: Mighty Yoga for Kids ages 8 – 13 at Mighty Writers from 3:30 – 5 pm.

11. Tuesday, July 12: Make Your Own Graphic Novel at Free Library of Philadelphia 1pm for ages 6 -12 (Walnut St. West Branch) *remember to check your local branch to see what’s going on over the summer.

12. Wednesday, July 13: Pay what you want at the Art Museum on Wednesdays after 5pm! Tip: Catch the Creative Africa exhibit.

13. Thursday, July 14: Catch a Screening Under the Stars at Penns Landing – Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

14. Friday, July 15: Kidchella at Smith Playground with $10 admission or grab $5 tickets from Philly Fun Guide.

15. Saturday, July 16: Catch the Colonial Quest Puppet Show at 11:30am or 1pm at Carpenter’s Hall

16. Sunday, July 17: Take a family art class at the Pennsylvania Academy for Fine Arts from 2pm – 4pm.

17. Monday, July 18: Spend an afternoon at the Oval, a pop-up park on the Parkway.

18. Tuesday, July 19: Cool off at one of Philly’s Spraygrounds! Find them around the city using this list.

19. Wednesday, July 20: Catch Zootopia at Mifflin Square Park. Starts at dusk.

20. Thursday, July 21: Spend an afternoon at Spruce Street Harbor Park! Food, fun, hammocks, and giant connect four games.

21. Friday, July 22: Tall Trees Playdate at the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education from 2 – 3 pm ages 3 and up! Learn about nature, explore, dig, and build. Pre-registeration advised.

22. Saturday, July 23: PECO Multicultural Series: Islamic Heritage Festival and Parade at Penn’s Landing from 2 – 8 pm. Enjoy a market bazaar, free games, giveaways, and entertainment.

23. Sunday, July 24: Learn about the life cycle of Monarch butterflies at Milkweed and Monarch’s at Norristown Farm Park.

24. Monday, July 25: Make something with MakerJawn at various locations around the city from 1 – 4 pm.

25. Tuesday, July 26: Break a world record with Mighty Writers for the most people writing at the same time! Join  over 3,000 Philly kids ages 7 -17 at the Art Museum from 10am – 12 pm. Make sure you sign up!

26. Wednesday, July 27: Visit a playground you’ve never been to. Did you know Philly has over 150 playgrounds?! Here’s an official list of every one.

27. Thursday, July 28: Screening Under the Stars at Penn’s Landing – Star Wars The Force

28. Friday, July 29: Spend an afternoon at Smith Playground. Bring lunch and a donation if you can!

29. Saturday, July 30: Nature Exploration at the Schuylkill Center for Environmental Education at 10:30 am

30. Sunday, July 31: Franklin Square 10th Birthday celebration starting at 11am. Fun, cake, and activities.

Kids Motherhood

Leading By Example

Last week the hubs shared this super cute video of him and two of our boys. I must have watched it a thousand times. I mean, seriously, it gets no cuter and I’m not just saying that because they’re mine ;). We’ve both shared it a few times on social media–because yes it deserved more than just one share–but it was his most recent tweet that inspired this post. He captioned the video: Lead by example.

Something that has always been important to us, especially raising black boys in America, is teaching them that despite what the world may say or think about you, you can be whatever you want to be. What better way to teach that than setting the example. On the surface, this really is just a cute video of a Dad dancing with his kids. But below that, there’s a message. The babies are watching 😉 ~xoxo

“The hubs” is actually a professional hip hop dancer, teacher, choreographer. You can see more of his work and these cute kids on*

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Deets from beyond the blog on living, creating, and designing a life you love.

Mompreneur Motherhood

How a Shorter To Do List Has Increased My Productivity

Shorter to Do List for Productivity

Happy Monday! I hope your weekend was great. I know they’re never long enough and and if you’re living that Boss Mom life, what are weekends anyway?  I also hope you’re ready for a fantastic and productive week and hopefully this post can help a little with that. This week, I wanted to pick back up on my Getting Things Done series (if you haven’t read part 1, make sure you go back and read that). In the first post I talked about themed days and how busy women juggling multiple projects, jobs, and kids can use this technique to stay focused and get things done. Today, I want to discuss how doing something that actually seems less productive is the number one way I’ve been able increase my productivity. I make a shorter to do list. Mind. Blown.

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Kids Motherhood

Bonding with the Boys

Bonding with the Boys | styled her life

A few weeks back I was listening to one of my favorite podcasts while I was cooking dinner. It was a live Being Boss episode and one of the topics was something about connecting the dots between what your values are and what you’re doing in your day to day life. One of the hosts asked listeners to do this simple exercise to list 4 or 5 hardcore values that you have and then list 4 or 5 things that you do each day. Although it sounds really basic, this super simple task was a real eye opener because I found that my lists were complete opposites. Mind blown. I had things like my kids, my relationship with God, my community on my values list but yet on my daily list I had client work, checking email, and scrolling social media. Disconnection for real. Now that’s not to say that those daily tasks aren’t necessary, I mean mama’s gotta pay the bills, but to not spend time doing the things that I say truly important to me on a daily basis, is a real problem. I immediately started to think about what changes I could implement daily to make my lists more cohesive when my son ran in the kitchen asking me about “Pizza Friday”. Light bulb!

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Life Motherhood

Random Thoughts on Motherhood

my motherhood | styled her life

Oh the beautiful complexities of this thing called motherhood. You would think by now, a mother of three, and successfully(?) raising children for the past seven years that I would kinda have a solid grasp on this thing. Maybe? Nope. Well…at least I don’t feel like I do all the time. I wonder if my mother had these feelings? I should ask her. She always seemed so sure of herself, what she was doing, what she wasn’t. Are there things I would do differently than she? Sure, I think that’s something all parents can relate to. But even with that, my mother was so…grounded in who she was and what she wanted to show and teach us as her children. It’s hard to imagine, when I think about that strong, independent woman, that she could possibly have felt the inadequacies that sometimes feel when stumbling through the trials and triumphs of motherhood. But I should ask her because who knows…maybe she did.

As my kids are growing, and as I grow with them, I’m starting to realize that feeling is kinda just a part of being a mom. To your kids, you look like you know what you’re doing. You’re mom! You know everything! But inside you have no clue. Or maybe that’s just me (insert side eye emoji because I know it’s not just me). You’re just doing what you think is right the best you can for your kids. And that means your version of motherhood will look  different from the next mama…and as I’m learning raising 3 very different sons, with 3 very different personalities, sometimes it looks different in your very own house. The point is, motherhood is a roller coaster, one with ups, downs, and upside downs, but even through that, I’ve come to to know that my version of motherhood is good.

With all the uncertainty surrounding life and subsequently motherhood, I have to admit there’s a small comfort. Even behind the questions, the reading blogs to see if someone, anyone out there is going through whatever I may be at the time, the late conversations with hubs discussing one thing or another, there’s a peace. While I may not “know what I’m doing”, below the surface of uncertainty, I really am just as confident as I think my mother was. I know what it is I want to teach my sons, I know the things I want them to experience, I know the options I want to provide them with, and the love and care I have for them. There are things that are important to me that I share with them, and there are things that really aren’t necessary for me to raise awesome kids. And while that doesn’t translate to parenting expert extraordinaire, it’s enough. More than enough in fact.

So as I celebrate my 8th mother’s day I do so in confidence and I hope you do the same Mama! This motherhood thing isn’t easy but we’re doing a great job. Happy Mother’s Day <3!

Tyshia (1)


My Favorite Motherhood Blogs + Websites

Motherhood Blogs

I’ve decided to dedicate this week to mama’s as we gear up to celebrate Mother’s Day this coming Sunday. To start the week I wanted to share some of my favorite blogs and sites that capture motherhood through beautiful and transparent lenses. I chose a mixture of personal blogs and larger sites because I love following specific blogs for personal tales of motherhood as well as big sites that discuss parenting and motherhood on a larger scale.

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Mompreneur Motherhood

Figuring it Out

Styled Her Life

What if…having it all figured out is just a temporary moment in time. What if the whole idea of arriving to this point where you’ve “figured it out” is really just point on a much longer path. A part of a much bigger picture? “I think I’ve figured it out and realize I have no clue what’s happening at least 2 – 3 times a week.” I tweeted this a few days ago after going through the normal roller coaster of life that is intensified by a million when you’re self-employed. But it’s true. I continuously reach these points where I’m like YASSS this is it. I know exactly what I’m going to do! This will be great. I’ve figured it out! Only to wind up a few days later like “so what exactly am I doing out here?” Continue Reading

Life Motherhood

Things To Do This Spring

Things to do this Spring

Do you know it had the nerve to snow in Philly this past weekend? Not here for it. I’m over here looking for Spring like…you’re late. Nevertheless, because I’m practicing intention with my time and life these days (you know that whole “life she loves” thing), and I’m consistently learning that they key to success with anything is planning (major key), while I’m waiting on Spring’s tentative arrival I decided to plan some Spring activities with the family. Sharing my list with you 1) for accountability 😉 and 2) if you’re looking for some ideas hopefully you find some inspo here. I included a template at the end for you to print and write out your own Spring checklist as well.  Continue Reading

Mompreneur Motherhood

Getting Things Done: Themed Days

Themed Days

When I first started this work at home mom journey I was a mess. I don’t know why I had this cotton candy and rainbow sprinkles idea of how easy life would be once I cut out the long commute, stopped rushing to pick ups and drop offs like a crazy person, and had “unlimited amounts” of time to get things done. Dreamland for real. What actually happened is I became busier than I have ever been in my life. If I thought life was hectic before it was NOTHING compared to what it looked like those first couple of weeks. I might have dropped out the race before it even really got started had it not been for the grace of God and the ladies in my mastermind group. Since then, I’ve figured out a system that helps me stay somewhat “balanced”, less anxious, less all over the place, and able to get things done. It’s pretty simple but for a girl with a lot on her plate and a low tolerance for overwhelm, this system has changed the game. I wanted to share the things that have helped so I thought I’d start a series on simply “Getting Things Done”. First up: Themed Days.  Continue Reading