“You are a great parent. You don’t feel it because you are in the survival stage.”

A doctor once told me during one of my mental breakdowns, “You are a great parent. You don’t feel it because you are in the survival stage.” At the time, that was the realist thing I understood. Sometimes it may seem as if we are not spending enough time with our kids. However, we don’t see our reflections enough.

What my children see: Mommy busy in the kitchen.
What I feel: Guilt. My child asked me to sit down and put together a puzzle.
What I don’t see: Myself stressing to make a meal which accommodates everyone. With hopes of at least getting the kids to eat a couple bites without going, “yuck.”

What my children see: Mommy on her phone.
What I feel: Stress. I need to get this grocery order in on-time or we may not have milk for tonight. I don’t have time to run to the store.
What I don’t see: Myself going through the cabinets and fridge each day, making lists of the things we need. Remembering to always have milk for my babies.

What my children see: Mommy hiding in the closet.
What I feel: Torn. I feel like I am missing fundamental moments throughout the day.
What I don’t see: Myself trying to build a career, something my children can be proud of. While trying to make extra money to take my kids on vacations.

What my children see: Mommy crying.
What I feel: anxious.
What I don’t see: Myself trying so hard to be a great mom. I don’t see everything I do is for my family.

A lot of times the reasons many new mothers fall into the path of postpartum depression is because we lose control. We just gave life to this tiny little human. Whether it’s your first, second, or fifth child, anxiety doesn’t care. As a new mom, we are beyond exhausted, still healing from giving birth, and probably starving. Since every time we try to take a bite of something the baby starts crying! Think about it. In any situation where we start to lose control over things we get anxious. It’s human. We are too hard on ourselves. The important thing is overcoming.

It was very hard for me at first to accept help. I have always been independent and I didn’t “need” anyone helping me. It made me feel like a failure. My biggest fear was my child not wanting me and wanting the other person for comfort. I know, it was silly to think that. Nevertheless, I overcame the feeling after realizing no one can ever replace my love and my babies know that. If you have the help, take it! We do everything all the time. It’s okay to let someone else do it for a couple hours. Whether it’s your partner, grandparents, or a close friend you trust, we need a break sometimes. That is what makes you a better parent. We need those breaks. Fortunately, my husband helps out a lot. He probably gives the children baths more than I do.

Sometimes as moms we forget who we were before kids. The 1-hour self care routine I did every night? Yeah, okay. Who has time for that? My hair ends up in this low, weird, ponytail thing for 3 days. Half of the time I can’t even remember what the original style was. I started dedicating more time for self-care. Maybe not an hour every night but even if I threw a face mask on while I did the dishes it made me feel a little better. “When you look better, you feel better.” Another thing my mom would always tell me. It’s true. If you look like a tired housewife, you’re going to feel like one. I started putting a little concealer on in the mornings and occasionally a little mascara. One of my favorites is just $5 on Amazon. It’s called the “Essence Lash Princess.” If you don’t use it already definitely try it. It gives you the look of false lashes without the heavy feeling. I have linked it here.

Even if I wasn’t going anywhere it still made me feel a little more alive. When I started working from home, it became routine. Especially on days I would have meetings. No one needs to see 3 years of lack of sleep. I come from a middle-eastern background so I naturally have darker circles and deep eye sockets. So, if I was up until 1am with a child who thought it was turn-up time it is not a pretty day for me. Giving yourself just 5 minutes in the morning can really make a difference to your overall attitude.

Self-care is so important and is something new moms often neglect. In order for us to be our best. We need to feel our best as well. Subscribe to my blog for upcoming announcements regarding my free downloadable Self-Care Challenge coming soon!

Do you prefer your spouse to work from home or outside of the home?

This thought had crossed my mind over the past week since my husband had a week off. Nevertheless, I do enjoy spending time with my hubby. However, as odd as it sounds, I look “forward” to him coming home from work. Does that make sense?

We both start our day at about 7:30 am. He leaves for work. I go to my closet “home office” and begin work at 8:00 am. Yes, I have turned my storage closet into my office.

Throughout the day, in between my shifts I often straighten up the house, prepare dinner, and for lack of a better term, “prepare” for his return. I get the kids excited. “Papa will be home soon,” I tell them. When they hear the front door, the girls run. “Papa!” It is so adorable! Who wouldn’t want that walking in after a long day?

The feeling isn’t the same when we are home everyday together. Since we have outgrown our apartment there really is not much room to “space out.” There isn’t any anticipation. We both saw the same things all day. There are no: “let me tell you what this little girl did today!” He was there. He saw it happen too.

Due to the pandemic over the past year, many work schedules have changed causing more businesses to be run from the home. So, I am curious to see your thoughts on this topic.

~Est. 2016. Married since 2017~

Look at Yourself in the Mirror Mama

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

You are beautiful and strong.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

Even when the days are long.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

You are the rock of the family.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

Even through all the insanity.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

Dark circles and all.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

Motherhood is a special call.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

The one they call mom.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

The one who releases the calm.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

Even when your patience is on zero.

Look at yourself in the mirror mama,

The one those children look to as a hero.

Mama Mish

Four Easy Apps to Make Money from your Phone

Four Easy Apps to Make Money from your Phone

Phone Hustles

Here we are, back with Part 2 of my “at-home hustle.” If you read Part 1 you already know I went to town cleaning my apartment. It felt good to both make money and find another home for the things I no longer had use for.

There are SO many apps out there to make extra money right from your phone. I have tried a ton. Many of you are probably already familiar with most of them. Today, I am going to go over the ones I have had the most success with.

Rakuten

Let’s start with one of my favorites Rakuten. If you are not familiar with Rakuten, it is an app you use to shop online at your favorite stores and receive cashback. There are so many stores offering cashback just to check out using the Rakuten app. It’s easy, choose the store you’re going to shop at. Whether it’s Groupon, Target, JC Penny, Nike, etc. Once you click your store and activate your cashback any purchases made from the app you will receive cashback on.

Keep an eye out for double cash-back days. Some stores offer up to 12% cashback. There is an in-store cash back option as well. Just link your card to the app and when you make purchases in-store the app will automatically calculate your cashback in your account. For a limited time, you can use my referral link and get $25 back after making a $25 purchase at any of your favorite stores. Sign up here.

How you chose to get paid is totally up to you. There is a PayPal option or check. Payments are sent every 3 months and you must have at least $5.00 in your account to cash out or the balance will carry over to the next pay out period. Get paid to shop, how easy is that? Now you see why it’s one of my favorites. =)

My 2021 recent cashback activities.

Fetch Rewards

Another one of my all-time favorite shopping apps for cashback is Fetch Rewards. In my opinion, I don’t think Fetch gets as much attention as it deserves. Unlike Ibotta, which I will talk about later, Fetch gives you points for any receipt. Just simply scan your receipts in the app and receive points! Once you have reached a certain amount of points you can trade-in for gift cards. You can even get gift cards for $3.

I have bought so much from Amazon using gift cards. Thanks to Fetch Rewards. If you use my referral code (M4HDQ) to sign up you will get 2,000 points after scanning your first receipt! We like easy stuff over at Moms Mish’n =)

 

My Fetch Rewards Dashboard

Pampers Club Rewards

Now, let’s move on to diapers! As a parent, I have bought a boatload of diapers and now pull-ups. I’m sure you have to! If you don’t already have the Pampers Club app, download it now! Have you ever noticed the sticker on your pampers packages with a code on it? Well, you receive points for every code you scan! Codes are on wipes, pull-ups, and basically, any pampers products.

Then use your points to trade in for gift cards to your favorite stores or choose items from their online catalog. The app occasionally offers $5 cashback just for scanning 2 codes in addition to your points. Trust me, if your kids go through pull-ups like mine, those points add up girl!

Pampers Club Sticker Code

Ibotta

Lastly, let’s finalize this hustle guide with Ibotta. One of the more popular cash-back apps. I’m sure you have heard of it. I do use Ibotta. Although, probably not as often. The cash-back offers are more geared toward name-brand items.

I am a big Aldi shopper which has it’s own brand so a lot of the offers don’t apply to my grocery shopping. However, Ibotta will have offers allowing you to upload a receipt from any store to receive cashback or have a specific item, let’s say cereal of any brand. Those offers are great! Once you reach at least $20 you can again get a gift card or receive a cash payment.

My Ibotta Earnings

Get that Money!

I’m sure there are a ton of other apps for cash-back options. These are just my favorites. Before I went back to work, I hated not having my own money. I used these apps as ways to get cashback for household items I was already buying. Then, I would use the gift cards to purchase stuff for myself or my kids. Now, as a working mom, these are still all of my favorite ways to get free gift cards!

My husband probably thought I was nuts as he would watch me scan all my receipts. I remember him telling his friend one time, “I don’t know where she finds these things.” What can I say? I like to save my family money and earn cashback. Double Win!

If you have any questions about any of the apps I mentioned or even have some new ones you would like to share feel free to reach out to me or leave a comment. As always thanks for supporting Moms Mish’n. =)

How I Made Over $1,000 Cleaning my Apartment

Re-working my Do-to List

Let’s start with re-working my list after let’s call it my “epiphany.” I realized my to-do list consisted of many tasks mostly involving things for others. I was always stressed out and constantly cleaning to make space in our apartment. As our family grew the walls in our apartment felt as if they were closing in. We have been looking to move. However, there’s more planning that goes into buying a home than renting. We will save that for another blog. 😉

Taking a look back at number one of the list, “clean/organize the kid’s clothes.” 

Due to the lovely fact, I have two girls very close in age, they pretty much share everything. We had lots of clothes, toys, shoes, etc. the kids no longer used. Plenty still tagged as my youngest is almost the size of my 3-year-old! I bet you have a ton of stuff too! I worked my way through the clothes. I made three piles. One was the keep pile, anything the girls still wore or could be passed from big sis to little sis. Another was a donation pile, anything I would give to friends and family or take to the local goodwill. Lastly, one was for my “boutique.” We will get to that later. By the end of my cleaning session, I had a decent size selling pile. 

The way I differentiated the donation pile from the sell pile determined a couple of factors. I imagined myself in the consumer’s shoes and thought would this condition be acceptable for me to purchase for my child. Also, did I have any friends or family members with kids who can use these items? 

Offer Up

The next step was the fun part. Obviously, after the kids went to sleep because how could I do anything while they were awake! I set up my “photo” area. I laid my items one by one. I poured myself a glass of wine and snapped away. I did not take pictures of the whole pile. I chose a few items to start with, I think I did about 10 posts. Important factors to keep in mind when posting are making sure you have a clear description of the item. The size, colors, brand, etc. Try to keep a clean background, or use a solid-colored floor or blanket as I did. People are less likely to buy from someone who has their messy house all in the pic.  After I had the pictures I wanted, I set up my boutique on various marketplace platforms. You can even give yourself a fun profile name. At one point, mine was Kids Fashion and More. I initially started out on Letgo, which is now a part of Offerup. If you’re not familiar with Offerup, it is an app you can download, post items to sell, and have the option for pick up or shipping. For shipping options, you just need to print the prepaid shipping label Offerup will send you via email once someone purchases. Then, package your item nicely and drop it off at your local USPS drop box or post office. If you want to check out my profile, click here

Poshmark

Another great platform I use is Poshmark, which is similar in the sense of selling. However, a little different than Offerup in the sense of it only offers shipping options. Although, there are more opportunities to market your closet with inclusive “Posh Parties.” You can create your free account with my invite code: MISHB0517 and get $10 credit in your account for anything you may want to buy. Click here to sign up.

When inquiries started coming in. I got so excited. I always kept track of what I sold and how much I made. It was my little business. Some months I would make a couple of hundred dollars. I actually made more with shipping orders than I did with local pick-ups. This literally became my “job.” Now, I looked forward to cleaning out closets because I was on a search for items to post while getting unused things out of my face. I would refer to higher brand items such as Michael Kors, Juicy, Nike as “hot ticket items” because I knew they would sell fast. Especially, if it still had tags. Another tip for selling fast is to bundle items. Instead of posting 6 onesies of the same size. I would bundle a bunch of clothes of the same size and label “Baby Girl Bundle: 6-12 months”  along with the price of the bundle.

Facebook Marketplace

There are other places you can use to sell items you no longer use. Facebook Marketplace is a great option as well. I have purchased quite a few things from Facebook sites myself. 

Find Local Consignment Shops

There are also local shops I have used where you can upcycle clothes. For instance, in my area, we have KidtoKid, a children’s store, which carries anything from clothes, cribs, strollers, toys, etc. They accept all items mentioned as well. Bring your items into the store. Clothing must be cleaned and folded neatly. The store associate will assess the condition of the items and offer you cash or 20% more in-store credit. There are also upselling stores for men’s and women’s fashion. Check your area for stores near you. 

You can easily sell a ton of things taking up space in your home. You will be surprised how much you’re not actually using. I mainly focused on children’s clothes since I had so much, but I have sold other items such as suitcases, DVD players, kitchen accessories, and much more. In my experience, I have made more from Offerup and Poshmark than taking items to the local shops. As a stay-at-home mom it is nice to make a little money to have for yourself it gives you the feeling of independence. If you haven’t started already or have questions, feel free to reach out to me. I’d be happy to help get you started on your money missions!

Customized baby bundle for my buyer.

My second pregnancy surgery story and my experience with post partum depression

How many of you have experienced or know someone who has experienced postpartum depression? According to the CDC, studies show about 1 in 8 women experience symptoms of postpartum depression. That is a lot of women! Well, I was one of them.

Let’s start from the beginning. 

On Sunday, February 3rd, 2019, I took a pregnancy test. I had not missed my monthly friend yet but something in my body told me to take one. After 3 long minutes, there was a light pink line. Although, my husband and I shared joy at the thought of our daughter having a sibling. We did not want to get too excited until we knew for sure. Since it was still so early, we figured we would make an appointment for later in the week.

If I recall correctly it was about 4:00 am the next morning. I started experiencing the worst cramps I had ever felt. I was on the floor, in tears, with so much pain. My husband called my mom to come over and watch the baby while we went to the emergency room. When we arrived, I was sent to a room rather quickly. I told the doctor everything I was feeling and about the “positive” pregnancy test. Naturally, the nurse drew blood. I then went for ultra-sound imaging. I remember suffering during the whole bumpy ride down. The tech didn’t say much during the ultra-sound. Despite the fact I was in so much pain, I was anxiously waiting for her to say, “there’s the yolk sack,” as our sonographer had expressed to us when my husband and I first found out about Marci (our first.) Instead, before she hung the probe she said, “you will be okay.” I will be okay? What the hell did that mean?! 

Moments later, the doctor came to our room and sat down. She looked at me with a face full of sorrow as she explained to us I had an ectopic pregnancy BUT not in my fallopian tube. Rather, on my ovary. I had internal bleeding which was causing the pain. I was scheduled to have emergency surgery at 7:00 am. I was so confused, aching in pain both physically and emotionally. 

After surgery, my OB-GYN explained to me what happened during surgery. He had to remove about 80% of my right ovary to clean up the internal bleeding and tissue mass. I was discharged a couple hours later. Filled with emotions and pain medication for that matter it was a quiet ride home. I probably cried about 10x that week thinking I lost my baby and I would have a harder time getting pregnant with one “working” ovary.  

My doctor called that Friday, he instructed me to come in right away to discuss my biopsy results. Can you imagine the thoughts running through my head when he said that! I made it there within the hour anticipating what he was going to say. It turned out the mass we thought was my baby was a giant blast of cysts that had burst. He ordered more blood work to check my HCG levels. Sure enough, those levels were rising. We did an ultrasound at 6 weeks and finally the little dot that warmed my heart. Despite surgery, my little embryo was in there just minding her own business until she was ready to make her debut in my womb. I was considered an at-risk pregnancy due to how much blood I had lost during surgery. I had doctor appointments 2-4 times a month for probably my entire pregnancy. 

Ahh.. the delivery. Much different than my first, the labor was more intense as my epidural didn’t take so I pretty much felt everything. However, the recovery was much quicker. I said to myself, “I’ve got this.” Well, after 3 months I most certainly did not have it. 

At first, I denied the fact I may be experiencing postpartum depression. I just felt so angry at the slightest things. What I needed was a FREAKING break! I found myself sitting in wineries or local bars just enjoying a few moments to myself. I would count down the minutes until I would arrive back home to whatever mess awaited me. 

A couple of months later businesses started closing due to Covid-19. Quarantine had begun, and so did the worst of my depression. How was it that I was home all day, yet I still couldn’t get my life together? I wasn’t lazy, I was tired. I wasn’t a bad mom. I just needed help.

I started having sharp chest pains and was more tired than ever before. Needless to say, I thought I had Coronavirus and went to the doctor. After breaking down in tears while trying to explain to the physician how I was feeling, he looked at me and said, “you do not have Covid, my dear, you have kids.” I couldn’t help but laugh. 

One night after the kids had gone to sleep. I got my journal out and wrote down my To-do/Mish’n list. I realized everything on that list was tasks I needed to do for others. When was the last time I did something for myself? I had no friends, no hobbies, no job, and barely any self-care. I knew things needed to change or I would lose my absolute mind. So…

I re-worked my list. 

Be sure to subscribe to my blog for notifications each time I post something new. Stay tuned for Mish’n 1: The Hustle. As always, thank you all for your continued support! #momsmishnfam

12 Hours Post Surgery 02/04/2019.
Baby Shower, September 2019.

How I Became my Mother

Welcome to Moms Mishn!

woman carrying baby at beach during sunset
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

My name is Michelle aka Mish, and I am ALWAYS on a mission. Since becoming a mother my mission list has become longer and my days shorter, but I always find a way.

I came across a sample paper I did in college the other day on one of my good ol’ cleaning missions. We were instructed to write a short paper on the person who has had the greatest influence in our lives. I wanted to share the sample in my first blog post as a dedication to my mom, who has always told me, “you can do anything you put your mind to.”

Sample Paper

1 September 2015

A little girl told her mother, “When I grow up, I want to be just like you.” The little girl was me. I continue to realize what an amazing woman I have been blessed with to call my own. My mother is my teacher, friend, and role model. She has the greatest influence on my life. Her strong independence and heartless actions are among the many characteristics I admire. Any woman can have a baby, but it takes a lot of love, patience, and care to become a mother.

My mother is the solid foundation of our family. After my parents divorced, my mother faced multiple challenges as a single mom to provide for her family. Financial stability became a struggle. She was not given the opportunity to attend college as a result of getting married at a very young age. I was very proud of my mom when she received her state license as a Nail Technician. She found her passion and she went for it. I admire her strength, willpower, and accomplishments that encourage me to aim for success. As the nurture of four children, she continued to dispense her unconditional love equally. Her extraordinary ways of loving taught me patience. Being the oldest of my siblings required me to mature at a young age. I had to cook and clean in order to care for my brothers and sisters. There were many days my mother worked long hours to maintain a roof over our heads and food on the table. She sacrificed to give us birthday parties, Christmas gifts, and vacations she couldn’t always afford.

The greatest influence my mom has had on me is my independence. She has raised me to be strong and not have to depend on anyone. There were times I’ve felt I was not good enough or could not achieve things. For example, when I had job interviews I would become nervous. She constantly reminded me of my potential, “you can do anything you put your mind to”. Her words motivate me every day to be the best I can be. I decided to go back to school to receive my degree in Social Work, not only for my passion to lift the lives of others but to lift my own life as well. I could not have made this decision without her.

As the years go by, I continue to look up to this wonderful woman. I can only hope to be half the mother she is. The day I was born she not only gave me the gift of life but the gift of her kind heart. There are many moms I have come across who have had negative impacts on children’s lives. To see a parent’s influence change the way of life can be good or bad. Some women do not have the patience it takes to raise a child. Some friends often joke by saying they are going to steal my mom for themselves. Although I laugh at the witticism, I am honored to have a role model I can call my mother.

The Future

Fast-forwarding six years later, I never did finish my degree. I made the sacrifice to dedicate my undivided attention to my firstborn. I went from working a full-time job, attending classes, and being financially independent to a broke stay-at-home mom who needed to rely on her husband for money. I quickly learned that did NOT work well for me. I have always been independent and I loathed the thought of having to ask other people for things. Therefore, my mission was to make my own money and still be with my baby since daycare wasn’t an option. I found an evening position at a local department store, it felt good to be able to make and spend my own money again.

Well, 3 months into working, I was pregnant again! I probably worked for another 3 months before leaving. I was exhausted, 6 months pregnant and spend all day with a toddler.

After my second was born, things became overwhelming. I experienced emotions I never felt before. I didn’t know what was happening, I was failing as a mother, wife, and just being me. I was angry all the time.

We all have missions. Sometimes we just need a little encouragement and positivity to get them accomplished.

Stay tuned for my next blog on Dealing with Post-partum depression.