What a couple of weeks it has been!  We are sending all of the love to those who are directly impacted by Covid-19, and to those of you are just like us — at home, trying to stay well + to make the most out of this situation.  We are currently all out of school, for the rest of this school year, we found out last week and honestly are still wrapping our head around it.  I am so thankful for all of this extra time with the girls, but feel sad for them not being able to finish out their school years with their little friends + teachers.  We all miss being able to see all our loved ones and cannot wait to wrap our arms around them when this is all over!

Two weeks in and we are surviving, definitely not thriving, but making it work, one day at a time!  I thought I would share some tips that are currently helping us through.

A schedule.  One of my good friends sent me a schedule she was using + it has SAVED US!!!!  It helps break up the day, helps the girls know what to expect, and it helps me to not let the day get away from us without being productive at all.  We have it posted on our fridge and are living by it, and plan to for the weeks ahead.

Getting ready everyday. This is really just for me, but I have found this makes suuuuuch a difference in my overall mood + productivity in the day.  I am making it a point to get up + do my hair/make-up each morning, even though we have no where to go.  The couple of days I have let this go I really noticed a difference, when you feel better, you do better!  Even in quarantine. 😉

Essential Oils.  I shared about how much we love oils here, we started using them consistently each day at the beginning of 2020 + I have never been more thankful for them than the past couple of weeks.  We are using them more than ever, to help with overall mood, sleep and to just make our home more cozy + a better place to be!  If you are at all interested in essential oils or just want to hear more, follow our wellness account at @bricknerfamilyessentials or send me an email!

Podcasts.  I have talked about my love of podcasts before, in our current status of social distancing I love them more than ever.  Being able to hear what other mamas are doing through this or just to listen to something other than the news, it gets me through each day!  I typically listen to one while Remerie is napping + the big girls are having quiet time, I so look forward to it.

Low Expectations. Probably what we are living by the most!  This is such an unprecedented time, emotions are high (from us and our kids), and there are going to be so many ups + downs throughout each day.  We are allowing more screen time than usual and aren’t feeling guilty about it, and I am working hard to give myself ALL THE GRACE!!!!!  You should be doing the same, we deserve it!

I really make an effort to find the good in everything, there has truly never been a better time that that, and I am also continuously reminding myself to soak in these moments with my girls — we will most likely never have a chance like this ever again.

Sending so much love to you + yours, we are in this together!!!

First + foremost, we are sending love to you + your families during this unexpected time.  I wrote this post last week and am still trying to wrap my head around how much have changed since then, it just a few short days.  I decided to still share about the ways we are making wellness (both physical + mental) are priority in our home, it seems that there has never been a more important time for that than now.

At the start of 2020, as part of our goal in living more intentionally + to bring a little more magic into our everyday, we decided to bring oils into our daily routine and to gradually make the switch to a cleaner lifestyle.  I purchased a starter kit through Young Living, thinking I would just bring some new products into our home, but it has ended up being so much more than that!  As a family, we have seen sooooo many positive benefits + that one kit has turned into a true lifestyle change for us.  Just three months in, and my biggest regret is that I didn’t do it sooner, we could not live without them now!

We are feeling so much gratitude for the steps we have made, and continue to make, towards a healthier + happier life for us and our kids by incorporating oils and other Young Living products into our everyday.  With that being said, I also DO NOT want to come across like we have it all figured out, or that we are living a chemical free, perfect life over here.  We still have so much to learn, we certainly use products that are not all natural, we still take medicine when we need it, and maybe most importantly, I am a full-time working mom of three — I am not spending hours of each day mixing up concoctions for anyone.  The greatest part of this has been the ability to make little changes where we felt like we could, but also putting aside things I felt like were too much to do know, but that I could do later.  By signing up for my starter kit, I gained access to the best community ever, facebook + other memberships groups with tons of women just like me, who want to make better decisions for themselves (and their kids) and want to find the easiest ways to do it.  In short, I feel like I know more now — and when you know better, you do better!

Also, just to put it our there.  Yes, I did pay money for my starter kit and do purchase products each month (many of them cleaning or skincare products I would buy elsewhere anyways) — but I now more than ever see that as an investment towards my family’s mental + physical wellness, and to teaching my girls the importance of finding tools to help them in their lives!  More than worth it, ten times over.

If you have ever thought about oils, or even if you haven’t but now miiiiiight be thinking this could be a good option for you + your family, you can learn more about the starter kit HERE!  You can also follow along at our Instagram account @bricknerfamilyessentials, where we share tons of information about oils, other Young Living products, and the ways that we are incorporating them into our daily life.  And of course, you can send me an email at abrickner1@gmail.com or DM me on Instagram to get more information, I AM HERE TO HELP!!!!  It’s no secret that hand sanitizers and cleaners are sold out across the country, they are still available right now through Young Living, as part of your starter kit.  Separately, there is also a thieves starter kit, complete with hand sanitizer, soap, and cleaners that will come to your DOORSTEP in a few days.

Come join the fun + stay well! XO

And just like that, our Remerie Rue is one + a half!  From here until September, closer to TWO than one, but still very much our little baby.  I haven’t done an update on her since her first birthday, it’s been such a fun (and wild!) six months since then!  Per usual, I’m going to be incredibly cliche and say how fast the time has gone and how wonderful + hard it’s been at the same time.  Because it is SO TRUE.  Having little kids (especially three of them) is like this constant tornado of feelings, so badly wanting to hold on to every cute little second + neeeeever wanting them to grow up, but also feeling this permanent state of exhaustion + wondering when life might just get a little easier again.  The craziest part is that even in the hardest of hard moments, you wouldn’t change any of it.  Either way, Remie is growing into this precious little lady + goodness WE ADORE HER.

A little bit about our 18 month Remie Rue, the absolute cutest, most destructive human alive.  She seriously is so freaking cute that it almost makes you forget how much of a handful she is, 99% of the time. 😉 The big girls call her “Remie Rascal” and tell me how fitting it is that we named her with two Rs, because she is always into something.  Always.  The bread drawer, computer, stack of important papers, basket of clear hair ties, second grade homework, stack of perfectly folded laundry – when you turn your head for two seconds, she is in it.  I don’t ever remember my other girls being this into all the things they shouldn’t (or starting tantrums so early), so I am already mentally preparing myself for the two’s, but also cannot help but laugh when she smiles every dang time that she does something she knows she shouldn’t + makes you forget all about it.  She is always reaching out to give a kiss or hug, and wanting to to cuddle or hold my hand.  Her laugh is the most contagious and even though she is still so little, she is always the first to hug one of her sisters when they are upset about something.  She is just the cutest little combo of sweet + sassy!

She loves being outside (especially on the swing), music, and mostly just wants to be around here sisters, whatever they are doing she wants to do it, too! 🙂 Lately she has been into “reading” books, she will grab a book + blanket and sit on the couch with it open and it’s the cutest thing ever.  She still sucks her same two fingers when she is upset, in a new place, or always when she is falling asleep, while simultaneously playing with her hair with her other hand.  And ANYTIME we see a dog or a tiny baby, she gets so excited + has to get really close, these are definitely two of her most favorite things.

The older she gets, the less she looks like either of her sisters, which is so funny + also so much fun to see the differences.  Genetics just amaze me!  She is truly our surprise little babe, the best surprise ever, with a look + personality all of her own.  We loooooove to love you, Remie Rue! 

For fun, Waverly’s eighteen month update can be found here + Avalon’s can be found here.  Being able look back on these is one of my favorite things!  XO

This past weekend my husband + I joined my family to finally head to Colorado and visit my brother and sister-in-law who have lived there for the past few years.  This trip was long overdue, Waverly + Avalon even had been before us since they went for the wedding when Remerie was just a few weeks old.  We had heard all the things about how beautiful Colorado was and it definitely lived up to all of that, truly one of the most beautiful places I have ever been.  We stayed in Breckenridge, the coziest, cutest little ski resort everrrrrrr — straight out of a movie!  It was so nice to spend some quality time with each other, my family, and to RELAX!  So good for the soul.

This was our first trip without the girls, and my first time leaving them for more than a one-night sleepover.  It was bittersweet and I definitely missed them, but it was such a good reminder of how important self-care and me time is (one of my goals in 2020!).  It was also theeeeee best to come home to three little girls jumping in the driveway, with welcome home signs, so excited to see us. 🙂  Hope you had the best weekend, sending you all the me time of your own! XO

 

We are almost two months into 2020, I thought I would share some photos of our February + a little bit about our Valentines Day!  We are 110% team celebrate every holiday year round, the girls get just as excited as I do and it keeps us going through these long winter months when really we are counting down to our summer break.

Each year our favorite traditions for Valentines Day are cookie making (and eating!), our annual February playdate with the girls little friends, and of course making Valentines to hand out at school.  This was the first year that I completely let go of any plans of helping my big girls pick out their Valentines, part of my goal in the new year was to be more intentional with the things that matter most to them and this was one of those things.  So instead of cute printables I found on Pinterest paired with boy/girl little goodies I searched forever for, we went to Target and they each picked out their own.  Waverly got a box with airheads + Avalon chose Peppa Pig Valentines, it was SO EASY and definitely their favorite Valentines to hand out yet.

On Valentines Day, we did heart pizzas with the girls at home, it was super laid back + a fun tradition I wanted to start with them this year!  It’s so fun to have a romantic dinner with my husband too, but we typically try to do it another night besides the actual holiday so we don’t have to fight the crowds + so we get to have time with our littlest Valentines as well.  This year we will celebrate in just a couple days when we go to Breckenridge with my family, sans kids, my first time to visit my brother since he moved to Colorado and definitely my first time without my girls for three days straight.  Bittersweet, but we are SO EXCITED!

And for the photos.

Avalon’s sassy face before school on Valentines Day is my favorite, Waverly is always trying to make faces like that when we take photos to be funny + of course, Avalon is forever wanting to be just like Waverly. 😉 I hope your 2020 is off to the best start + that these winter months are treating you well! XO