Champagne Taste Beer Budget

mommy life in heels

October 2, 2014
by christinacoker
7 Comments

Fall essentials with tommee tippee + a giveaway

*Thank you to tommee tippee for sponsoring todays post
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You can’t necessarily tell by the weather here in San Antonio but Fall is upon us! It’s my favorite time of year, cooler temps, my fall wardrobe and pumpkin everything.

tommee tippee loves the season as well and wants to help somebody celebrate with a Fall essentials prize pack.

Tommee Tippee Fall Essentials Giveaway Graphic

Enter below to win a 3-pack of Closer to Nature bottles, a set of pacifiers for a soothing Fall season, a pack of 2 milk feeding bibs + a Fall inspired blanket & 2 pumpkin flavored mixes from Krusteaz!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Good luck!

October 1, 2014
by christinacoker
0 comments

The pink ribbon

To everyone out there that has been affected by breast cancer, wether it’s you personally, a family member or a friend, here’s to finding a cure!

Happy breast cancer awareness month. Think pink & fight like a girl!

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October 1, 2014
by christinacoker
0 comments

How San Antonians vacation

*thank you to Capital one for sponsoring today’s post

San Antonians are loyal to our Alamo City. Recently, Capital One asked San Antonians what weekend getaway they’d prefer, the overwhelming answer was relaxing in the Texas Hill Country; and why not! The gorgeous nearby scenery is a great option for a quick stay-cation and offers much to do. B&B’s, antique shopping, wine trails, art galleries and so much more await.

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With travel being as expensive as it is and your travel rewards cards not rewarding you as they should, it’s sometimes impossible to book a little getaway. In fact, 71% of locals polled say that not having enough money stops them from travel, big or small. Why not earn on every purchase you make and have your expenses pay you back.

Capital One and their Venture card want to help you with that. You earn DOUBLE MILES with EVERY swipe of your card, no exceptions! With no blackout dates, no airline restrictions & no fine print on what travel expenses you can use your points for, that long weekend trip to the Hill Country is closer than you think.

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San Antonians tend to be spontaneous with our travels, booking only a week in advance, so we need a card and travel rewards that we can use when we need them. Nearly 1 in 4 of us locals under 40 has had to change our vacation plans due to airline restrictions on rewards. The Venture card is all about you taking control of your travel experience and making it a great one from the start and it clearly highlights itself as the better rewards card.

The tank of gas to get you to your destination – covered. The cost of the hotel – taken care of. Sunday morning room service – on the house.

My pick for a great stay-cation? The JW Marriott Hill Country Resort & Spa. Featuring a 36 hole golf course, 6 acre water park, 7 restaurants and Lantana Spa (see my experience here), there’s no better place to rejuvenate for the week. The hubbs and I have long had our eye on the Marriott for a quick trip. Wether it’s just for one day or for a few, it’s well worth a visit.

What’s your favorite local spot to get away?

For more information on the Capital One Venture card, click here.

September 29, 2014
by christinacoker
2 Comments

Top stress reducing beauty treatments

*thank you to Rachel MacDonald for contributing today’s post

Has the daily grind been leaving you feeling frazzled lately? Stress can not only take a toll on your physical health; it can also leave you looking worse for wear.

Chronic stress causes your body to go into overdrive with producing cortisol, a hormone that can lead to weight gain, hair loss, and a breakdown in your skin’s collagen. Those restless nights can lead to wrinkles and adult acne, among other nasty problems!

Fight back with these relaxing beauty treatments that will help repair the damage while leaving you feeling pampered

spa treatments

1. Enjoy a citrus-scented massage.
We all love the relaxing feeling of a professional massage, but even if you don’t have time to hit the spa you could give yourself a quick boost at home. Use a citrus-scented essential oil or lotion, and rub it on your neck, shoulders, and earlobes. Massaging the ears can release endorphins, while massaging the neck and shoulders quickly relieves tension. The citrus scent will give you a boost of energy, as it is has been shown in studies to create feelings of happiness.

2. Take time out for a fruity face mask. Has stress taken a toll on your skin? The fruit bowl in your kitchen is good for more than just healthy snacking! Many fruits are jam-packed with antioxidants and enzymes that can fight the negative effects of stress. Whip up a mask with fresh strawberries, sour cream, and honey to banish blemishes. Strawberries are filled to the brim with salicylic acid, the same ingredient you’d pay more for in chemical-filled acne products. Papaya is another stress-fighting superstar, with its wrinkle-fighting enzymes. Mix it up with oatmeal and honey for a soothing mask that will leave your skin glowing.

3. Keep cool as a cucumber.
Cucumber is a key ingredient in many spa treatments, used for its anti-inflammatory properties. Use a cucumber face mask or body wash at home to constrict blood vessels and calm irritated skin. You can also place cucumber slices over your eyes to reduce morning puffiness. Your friends will think you’ve jetted off for a cosmetic surgery Sydney treatment, thanks to the sudden face lift!

4. Prepare a relaxing foot soak.
Do you spend all day on your feet? Give your feet a break with a stress-fighting foot bath. Combine Epsom salt and a peppermint tea bag in a basin of warm water, and take some time to read your favourite magazine. You’ll feel all tension drain out of your body in no time. If you want the full-body soak, combine baking soda with sea salt and Epsom salts to relax your muscles and detoxify the body.

5. Unwind with chamomile.
Many of us already sip a cup of soothing chamomile tea before bed, but did you know that chamomile can do double duty as a beauty treatment? Use your empty tea bags as a warm compress for your eyes, or find a night cream containing this stress-fighting ingredient. You’ll be ready to drift off to sleep, with the cares of the day long behind you.

While there’s nothing like a weekend away at a spa but in the meantime you can fight stress at home with these easy, budget-friendly beauty treatments.

September 26, 2014
by christinacoker
0 comments

10 tips for flying with kids

*thank you to Capital One for sponsoring today’s post

With the holidays right upon us, I’d love to make a trip to California to visit my family in the coming months but traveling as a family of 6 isn’t cheap. Even with airline rewards and frequent flyer miles, all the blackout dates around holidays make it hard to book a seat when needed. Venture Card from Capital One turns that around for you with no restrictions, making your travel easier.

As a mom of 4, I’m well aware that traveling with your minis in tow can be stressful, but honestly, I love it! Sure it takes more planning and preparation than just packing yourself up to go, but there’s just too much world to experience to stay still! I’m a travel junkie and thanks to my military roots, I get stir crazy staying in one place for too long. I’ve flown cross country and across continents with the minis and get asked for tips on how to make the process as smooth as possible.

Here are a few of my tried and true practices that I implement every time we get on a plane and have saved me from having any travel terror stories to tell (knock on wood).

10 tips

10 tips for flying with kids 

1. Get yourself organized – for me this means physically taking pen to paper and writing out a list of everything the minis might need. As a work from home, homeschooling, mom of 4, thoughts flitter in and out of my mind before they’re fully formed. I need to write down anything I want to remember.

2. Be prepared, over pack – this specifically applies to your diaper bag/carrry on. When I fly with the minis I’m loaded with an abundance of snacks, small toys and books, pacifiers, wipes, extra changes of clothes, anything and everything you could possibly need in bulk just in case your flight is delayed, you get stuck on the plane on the runway, or any other number of unforeseen complications. Extra tip on packing snacks, pack something that will help ease the discomfort of little popping ears as the place takes off and lands. Yum Earth lollipops are a favorite of ours.

3. Talk with your child – especially if it’s their 1st time flying, let them know what to expect, particularly about going through security. It can be a frightening experience for young ones if they don’t know what it’s all about. If they have a stuffed animal, blanket or something like that that they always carry around and won’t let go of, warn them that it has to go through the x-ray machine to “get it’s picture taken.” Hopefully this prevents a melt down from having their favorite item taken out of their arms for a moment.

4. Ask for a gate pass – if you’re flying with your minis alone and need help getting them, yourself, the stroller, the bags, the carseat and all you have through security, go to the ticket counters and ask for a gate pass. This’ll allow someone to go through security with you and help you with whatever you need. I always take advantage of this when I’m flying alone. With a double stroller, diaper bag, purse, 4 minis (some of who might have their own carry on) and all that I have to lug around, having someone to help makes all the difference!

5. Dress appropriately – Children 12 and under don’t have to remove their shoes to go through security, but for the rest of us, think slip on shoes (I love ballet flats for flying) no belt and empty pockets. Don’t be that person that has to walk through the metal detectors 4 times and holds up the line because you don’t listen when you’re told to remove your belt and everything from your pockets!

6. Check big items for free – If you’re traveling with a carseat you don’t need on the flight, a playpen, stroller you don’t want to push around or anything of the like, you can check it for free. Or if you need your stroller with you, you can check your stroller at the boarding gate. Strollers can be checked as you walk on the plane and then will be there waiting for you as you unboard.

7. Take advantage of pre-boarding – I think all airlines do a pre boarding call for families with small children. You can get on the plane 1st and get yourself and your minis all settled in.

8. No seatbelt sign = freedom – When that little dings sounds off and the seatbelt sign gets flicked off, let your minis move around. No, I don’t mean let them run up and down the aisles screaming, I just mean let them have some wiggle room. Sit your little one on the ground by your feet with a toy and they’re happy. For the older ones, the simple act of not having to wear their seatbelt can seem very freeing.

9. Ask for help – If you should happen to need an extra set of hands while in flight, don’t hesitate to push your flight attendant call button! They’re their to help you, and, I’ve found, very accommodating and willing! The attendants on all of our flights have always been in love with the minis and would repeatedly stop by just to check on us and play with them, even giving out special treats for being so good!

10. Consider booking flights with layovers – Not only can it be a great way to find a cheaper flight, but it’ll give your minis a break, especially if you have a long flight. Exploring airports can be really fun if you have a few hours in-between flights.

And here’s a bonus top for you – get a travel rewards card! Traveling for our brood quickly adds up, we like to use miles as much as possible to help keep our expenses down but some credit cards make it really difficult to redeem miles. When browsing through different rewards credit cards, make sure you are getting one that is flexible and works for your family, such as Venture. With this card there are no limitations – the miles don’t expire, you can fly on any airline and book through any search engine.

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Take control and make your trips as easy as possible. It’s not just about the destination, it’s about the whole experience and you don’t want to start off with a headache.

Capital One is with me on making travel as smooth and stress free as possible.

Wether paying for your baggage fees, your whole flight, a rental car, or anything to do with your travels, the Venture Card is your way to more trips in less time. With no blackout dates, no airline restrictions, no expiration date, no fine print and double miles on EVERY purchase, a weekend trip to New Orleans or a luxury 2 week cruise is closer than you think.

Having a large family, our monthly expenses can add up, don’t get me started on just the groceries alone! Having a card that pays you double miles for every dollar, on every purchase, is huge! Those miles add up quickly!

Travel can be pricey and docking the price of an airline ticket or gas for a long road trip defiantly helps to lighten the blow to the wallet!

Let Capital One say #YesMiles for you.

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