Our story is one that is hard to tell over and over. For those who know about the loss we suffered, it was one that no parent imagines to ever go through. For those who don't know, our son, Mark Anthony II passed away at 16 days old in the NICU.
I was blessed to come in contact with Connie Gomez who runs Houston Latina Bloggers. We were able to connect and I instantly put myself in this amazing group of women. They support, and share with one another. I love that! Being able to be apart of something and share my blog and talents is a great way for me to feel reconnected. Especially through this time of being confined for our preemies health.
Through Houston Latina Bloggers I was connected to an amazing photographer, Anel. She owns Tender Nest Portraits, and captures beautiful moments. Anel reached out to me because of how touched she was by our story. She offered to capture moments of our family but also honor our son who passed away last year in July.
Anel...I want to personally thank you for that. The pictures you captured are beautiful and I love that his tiny bear was present with us. Some may not know the sentiment behind that particular bear but for us, it holds a key value. A memory. A moment in time where we never want to re-live but we will always remember.
I wanted to share all of the beautiful pictures with everyone, and also share the true story we were capturing..LIFE. Our son may not be with us anymore but we live on, and we make sure to never forget him. We are thankful for the love we share as a family and the strength that has grown between my husband and I. We aren't perfect but we love each other more than anything..Mark is my soulmate and I'm so blessed to see him be an amazing father to our children. Our girls are growing daily and Selena has proven her strength and amazes us with her progress. Emma is the most rambunctious child and has a playful spirit that I hope never fades.
When you think of the future, you think of how your kids will fit and who they will be. I know for Emma and Selena I try to be as active and silly as I can be. I want to enable these little girls to feel confident in being who they are. By showing them these fun characteristics it will make them feel free and build them to be outgoing and daring.
Mark and I have found Emma's passions, and we incorporate it daily to give her that freedom to express herself. We must interact with our children to learn who they are and who they will want to be in the future.
Future People is a brand that was designed to bring parents to interact with their kids! By using fun tees and onesies this brand gives OPPORTUNITY. The opportunity is for us to teach and interact with our little ones! The designs on the shirts compose of different ways to quiz our kids. With different shapes, animal sounds, colors, and MORE.
We have found a new way to show Emma how to tap into her creativity and still have fun! Nûby has a set of Bath Crayons that are for 3 years and up. Yes, Emma is not even two yet..BUT she loves to color and I am always with her to monitor her crayon usage. So please be sure that your little one is monitored if they aren't familiar with how to use crayons.
The set comes with 5 vibrant colors that are easy to hold and use. The crayons are BPA free, and easily draw on any flat tile surface. The best part is...IT WIPES OFF CLEAN! The crayons also allow the kids to easily push up more crayon when needed. ( I had to help Emma because she is still too young) It was a simple slide and the crayon is ready to be used! I was drawing alongside her and thought it would be fun to use her foam bath animals to also be in the pictures we were drawing. Emma loved it and enjoyed the freedom of coloring where she wanted in the bath. A fun way to keep your kids creative and enjoy some freedom with their art!
Having a toddler is a lot of work and you have to always try your hardest to teach them new things. The best way to teach is through play and hands on. I have been trying to find toys that can effectively teach Emma. She loves to play and run around, so finding toys that can keep her full attention are a MUST.
Count & Match Egg Set
KidzLane was amazing enough to send Emma a toy that helps teach her many different things! For starters it features a well designed carton that is a durable plastic case. They have 12 eggs that are brightly colored on the inside but also have a number of small prongs that connect when you close the egg.
Emma is a fan of books, and loves to build and connect toys together. So these eggs are perfect for her! They keep her attention and she may not understand exactly why they all don't fit together but she is noticing that they won't. THAT'S A GREAT START! She tries to fit them and will look at them when they don't connect properly, and that's the opportunity for me as her mom to show her why. I love that, because this is allowing me to teach her colors and how to match them. The number of prongs can come in at a later time when we start to count! A whole new thing to teach her and all with the same egg set! I truly love the eggs, and the quality is exceptional! I truly recommend checking them out! Thank you so much Kidzlane for allowing us to try out your toys, she loves it!
Emma and Selena have both started to share toys and use them for different purposes. Emma has so many new teeth coming in and needs constant comfort and play distraction. On the other hand Selena is learning about textures and finding toys to her mouth. So we need versatility in our toys and they must be for TEETHING.
Ice Ice Baby
The best thing to help relieve sore gums is something nice and cold. Nûby has some cute teethers called IcyBite Fruit Teethers, and they come in pairs of two! They are two brightly colored fruit shaped teethers with multiple teething surfaces. They are perfect size for little ones to hold and have soft re-moveable covers to cap over the fruit teether when it's cold. That helps keep their tiny hands from getting too cold. Its great because the PûrICE gel stays cooler longer than water filled teethers, and is BPA free.
Endorsed by Pediatric Dentist and Orthodontist Dr. Grace Yum
**ICYBITE Fruit Teethers can be found at your local TJ Maxx**
I love fun, loud, quirky prints to match up with different patterns and create fun outfits. I have tried to be as quirky and silly as I can be around the girls because I want them to never feel embarrassed about having fun and being themselves.
We sing, laugh and dance all day long and I love it! I love being able to show them that mommy is a goof ball. So when its comes to fashion decisions we also want to show them good quality and also fun trends.
While being home we also want to choose comfort that lasts all day long. Whether we are home, out and about, I want to know that we are having fun and comfortable while looking cool! Pair of Thieves create some great socks that aren't just for leisure but durable enough to take on the WORLD. With a toddler who seeks adventure, these socks are great for her tiny toes. I also LOVE that they come in packs where MOM and KID can match or DAD and KID can match! So CUTE!
They are breathable, soft, and have great PRINTS to choose from! We are OBSESSED.
Little Selena is slowly coming up on being a one year old, but is still behind like she is only 6 months old. We have tried spoon feeding which is great, she is still learning new flavors and figuring out her taste palette. Our biggest transition is getting her prepared for cups, and learning how to hold her bottle herself.
We last tried a cup that was pretty set for a little ones who had the bottle nipple already leaned and is open to different styles. Selena had difficulties liking the change so we are now trying a new bottle that gives great features like the handles, and the two option nipples to help transition again at a later time.
Selena was able to comfortably drink her milk, and also try to hold onto the handles. She never got fussy nor did she refuse the nipple. This is a great bottle to cup option for any parent looking to teach their little one about holding and gripping. That was one of the biggest features I searched for in a cup but desperately wanted the bottle nipple too. So this was the perfect bottle to cup set I have found that she likes as well!
When you start to introduce foods to your baby, it is always in a puree consistency. This allows your little one to adjust to small bits and also new foods! Selena has started only on bananas for now. We are still teaching her to adjust to being spoon fed. I would normally use a fork to smash her banana but hated getting my fingers dirty and the time it took to get the consistency she needed.
New + Improved
Nûby created a Garden fresh Mash N' Feed set that includes: a bowl with lid, smasher, and serving spoon. This set allows you to prep, mix, store, and feed.
How it works
BPA Free + Dishwasher and Microwave Safe
Drinking from straws are so easy now for Emma, so we are trying out all the new "big kid" cups! Nûby has many options, and styles of cups for on-the-go, and features a straw head! I chose the Thirsty Kids Flip-It Freestyle cup!
This cup is for 18+ months and holds up to 12 oz of any kind of drink. This is a great cup for Emma, because it features a top handle which is easy for her to carry, also the silicone band around the cup makes it simple for her to grip as she is on-the-go and playing! Reasons I LOVE THIS CUP is because of the vari-flo valve that protects agains spills and leaks! It doesn't leak at all; we tested it! I also love how it is a simple cup with pieces that can be easily cleaned and put together. That is always a main concern for me, so I love that this cup isn't complicated.
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