Clean Your Microfiber Furniture!

Clean Your Microfiber Furniture!

So, this seems an appropriate topic to follow up the Spring Cleaning Challenge, eh?

Any mama knows how even the most careful child can destroy something with a little juice or a granola bar in under six seconds. It’s like it’s in their blood. Because of this, most of us just give in, accept that we can’t have nice things for awhile, & let them do what they do (for the most part). That’s kind of the camp I’m in. But at the same time, I deserve nice things! Or at least a couch that doesn’t look like it’s stewing in 7 different liquids & who knows what else!

So, I got fed up one day – & by fed up I guess I just mean completely & utterly disgusted & set out to find a way to undo the weeks of water, juice, & the ONE milk spot that’s been driving me crazy on our microfiber couch.

After some research, I found out through the Google that this was a super simple & cheap fix! Little things like that excite me – sadly – so I got down to business right away.

First of all, a repulsive before shot. In my defense, the picture made it look worse than it was. Still gross, but not AS gross. Anyway, I grabbed my trusty bottle of rubbing alcohol – got REAL excited when my spray nozzle fit right on the actual bottle! – & got down to business.

Ugh, major heebs. Using a white rag was a little fun too, in the way that it showed me how much gunk I was getting up…

…and I had no idea there was green marker anywhere.

But, behold – the AFTERS!

Both the ottoman & couch cushion were still wet when I took these, but they even dried quickly. I am still so amazed by this!!

All I needed was a bottle of Isopropyl Alcohol, rags, & a brush to “fluff” the fibers after it dried.

Step by step, here’s what I did:

1. Evenly “soak” the cushion with the alcohol. I say soak, but I really just mean cover the whole thing enough that you can scrub it.

2. Grab your rag & start scrubbing the funk away.

3. Let dry.

4. Brush/fluff up with a stiffer bristled brush when completely dry.

And that is it! I did however test a small, inconspicuous spot with the alcohol first, to make sure it didn’t do anything weird to the color. It didn’t, but I’d recommend trying that too before you start, just in case!

I am so beyond excited about this. I’m actually looking forward to finishing up the rest of the couch!

And honestly, I’m sure in a few weeks I’ll be back to doing it again….sippie cups be damned. At least now I know it will only take a few minutes of my time to have our couch looking brand spanking new next time!

xoxo,

Cait

Spring Cleaning Challenge!

Spring Cleaning Challenge!

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Whew! So, its finally March…which means Spring is just over a week away! I mean, we still have like 16 feet of snow outside and its only 20ish degrees, but…I’ve got faith, man! It has to warm up eventually, right?

Fingers crossed!

I am definitely more of an Autumn person – jeans & hoodies & bonfires, yes please! – but Spring is alright. My second favorite part about it – after finally being able to open the windows with warm air coming inside! – is spring cleaning! I guess *favorite* might be a little bit of a stretch, but I do love the feeling of a deep cleaned house after being cooped up and closed up all winter long.

So, starting March 18th, I will be doing a 21 Day Spring Cleaning Challenge! I’ve divided up a list into one little thing each day for three weeks. I’ve also created a printable for y’all to follow along with me, or start whenever you feel like!

It took me awhile, but I’ve gotten to a point where I actually do enjoy cleaning. One thing I’ve found recently that I love are these swedish dishcloths! I love anything reusable, and to cut down on our waste. I’ve worked these into our budget to be able to purchase periodically, and I am obsessed. They dry pretty quickly, and I’m able to just pop them in the dishwasher once they are dirty to clean/sanitize them. They don’t get that stinky dishrag smell either, which I absolutely ABHOR, so that makes me really happy! So far I just use them specifically for cleaning, and maybe wiping up things around the kitchen. Eventually I plan to hopefully replace our paper towels with them. Another thing I love having around the house (mainly for the kitchen/bathroom) are these microfiber cloths. They are a bit cheaper, so I have quite a bit of them around already. I actually keep this laundry hamper in our front closet to just toss the rags/washcloths in every day, to wash at the end of the week. Its super handy and makes me feel a lot better than throwing gross rags into our clothes baskets.

I hope you will join me in this challenge! And if you have any helpful cleaning tips to share, please drop a comment below!

xoxo, Cait

Sick Baby Hacks!

Sick Baby Hacks!

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My poor sweet littlest sassy was so sick with a cold this weekend! Her eyes were swollen & watery, she was so stuffed up, couldn’t sleep, it was so sad! There’s nothing worse than your kiddos being sick – especially when you can’t do much to help!

Sweet babe, cuddling her Llama Llama

But even though it came out of nowhere – & my oldest, who was with her father for the weekend, accidentally took my car keys with her! – mama doesn’t mess around, so we were prepared!

The normal stuff, obvi – Kleenex, meds, “magic soap” (as we call it!), lip chappy and this nifty little contraption in the front!

So, we did the Nose Frida thing when she was a little babe. She hasn’t been sick/sniffly too terribly often, but we used it a few times and I felt kind of…meh about it, honestly. The hole was too big for my tiny girl’s nostrils, the tube always flung around weird & would hurt my lip? I don’t know. It was just not awesome. AND THEN! And then I was gifted that masterpiece of a boog sucker.

Mom life, am I right??

This thing is awesome. It has a small tip, so it goes right into her nose no problem. The best part is, in addition to it being a mom sucker thing, it also is a bulb syringe to suck boogs without the mouth part! Those are the technical terms, for sure.

Anyway, it comes apart easily to clean (even the bulb syringe part! Which is awesome), comes with quite a few replacement filters, there’s no way to accidentally blow air out into the babes nose, and it even come comes with a little pouch to store it in. And my other favorite part is that the bulb syringe actually WORKS! You know how the hospital one works awesome, but then every one you end up buying after that totally sucks?! I was worried about that happening, but this thing was awesome.

The other thing that worked fantastic for us was my Baby Lips Chapstick! Our only tub of Vaseline was with my oldest girl, & poor baby girl’s nose & upper lip was getting so chapped & raw from all the nose wiping! I got desperate, & gave up my favorite chappy for my sweet girl. She loves putting “lips” on, & once I showed her how to put in under her nose, above her lip & even a little across her cheeks – she was loving it even more! Once I researched kids chapstick, I found this stuff – which I already purchased. So I haven’t used it yet, but we will & I will report back!

Thankfully, my sweet girl was feeling better by Sunday….& Monday morning, the first thing she said when she woke up was “mama, I feel much better today!” 😍

I was so thankful to hear that! What kind of mom hacks do you have when your littles are sick? I’d love to hear them!

Single Mom Talks: Depression

Single Mom Talks: Depression

The first post in our “Single Mom Talks:” series.

Let’s talk depression for a minute.

Thankfully, it seems like the mental health stigma has gotten slightly “better” over the years. Better may not be the best word, but at least it is talked about more instead of swept under the rug.

I personally have dealt with depression for years. I was terrified I would end up with postpartum depression after my babies. Thankfully I didn’t, but I did end up with postpartum anxiety after my second – that was awful & I am still dealing with it. I’ll probably write a separate entry that later, since that’s an entirely separate beast.

Other than the typical “down, sad, hopeless” (& so on) feelings that come along with depression, the main thing I’ve really had trouble with is self care. It’s SO easy as a mom to put yourself last, & by the time you’re doing doing everything for your kiddos & giving them your all, there’s little to nothing left for yourself at the end of the day. Which is probably cliche, because that’s like the self care line, right? “You can’t pour from an empty cup”. Even though it’s true – & I’ve said it to my friends before who are struggling – & I believe it myself. But that’s not always an easy or do able answer.

At my worst, I was barely showering, brushing my teeth, washing my face, brushing my hair….when I did take the time to wash my hair, as soon as it was dry it went into a pony – sometimes for days. By the time I would take out the pony, my hair would be a snarly, matted mess that would take an hour to *carefully* brush out. It hurt & it made me so upset that I was a 30 something year old grown ass woman brushing snarls out of her hair. It almost brought me even MORE down. And then I’d vow this was the last time, no more ponytails, damn Cait take care of yourself.

Of course, it never went that way. It was another ponytail, more awful brushing, more feeling like a failure as an adult. Interestingly enough, it made me almost happy that even though I couldn’t care for *myself*, at least my kids were fed, bathed, in clean clothes, teeth & hair brushed, etc. I may be failing as an adult, but at least I wasn’t failing as a mom in that department. Plenty others, I’m sure. But thankfully it never got to that point for my precious girls.

Anyway, after having a collection of ponies wrapped with tons of loose hairs, cleaning out gross brushes, falling into bed at night & realizing again I didn’t wash my face…I’d had enough.

I’m a big list person. I like to have lists – cleaning lists, task lists, chore lists, and it came down to the fact that I needed to come up with some sort of morning & evening list/routine for myself. Silly or not, having a visual reminder to care for myself ended up being a huge help.

At first, it started out to be a very simple list:

Brush teeth, wash face, brush hair, shower. As time went on, it became those things, with the addition of a little makeup (CC cream & mascara – maybe some concealer. Nothing special, just enough to make me feel a little more alive), face mask twice a week, eyebrow waxing (I’m obsessed with mine, I wax them myself & don’t let anyone else touch them!), and a little nail care – file/buff nails, sometimes clear polish, or a nude-ish, light color.

Eventually, I split the list into a morning & night routine. I made a point to go to bed at a decent time – I’m a total night owl, always have been – & even started setting a timer on my phone to get ready for bed. I used to just shut off the tv, walk down the hall & climb into bed.

Of course, over the years, sometimes I’ve fallen off the wagon & had to start over. It’s always a vicious cycle. I just try to remind myself how much better I feel when I have my stuff together & take even just a little time for myself.

No matter what, if you’re feeling exceptionally down, just getting through the day is what matters sometimes. If you’re in a bad place, take it slow. Add one thing a day, or even one thing a week to start your routine. If it becomes too much, take a break & just focus on that one thing each morning. When you feel ready, add another thing. Don’t rush, & most importantly – do not pressure yourself. You do what feels right for you, & go at the pace you are comfortable with. Or, figure out a different way entirely! If routines won’t work for you, no worries either. Everyone is different. What’s important is finding something to help pull you out of the slump, even just a little bit.

For anyone that this may help, I’ve created a couple free Printables to get you started. Theres a numbered option, and a blank option. Choose what works before for you.

Just know you aren’t alone, ever. If I can ever help, or you just need an ear, feel free to reach out via our contact page, or fire off an email to:
Cait@adventuresofsinglemom.com.

xoxoxoxo,
Cait

Ch-ch-ch-chaaaanges!

Ch-ch-ch-chaaaanges!

Hello loves!

I am SO excited today. You may have noticed a little name change here! Single Mom Tribe is now

And I couldn’t be happier! When I started Single Mom Tribe, it was exactly what I wanted to create for single moms. However, as a little time went on, I began to feel a lot of (self imposed) pressure when creating posts, etc. I wanted to be able to blog about my life, but I didn’t want someone coming for the Tribe aspect & being put off by me talking mostly about myself as I tried to grow tribe members in order to create even more content. It was stressing me out a bit, to be honest!

This change has made my heart so happy & basically eliminated all the stress! I have SO many plans for posts/content now, Pinterest ideas, printables, and so on. This may be a bit more dramatic, but I feel more complete with this idea.

I do want to make sure our current followers are aware however that not *too much will change from the original content or intent. I just will be able to post more personal/single mom things without worrying about it following (again, self imposed) guidelines. Also, I have added a page specifically for Single Mom Tribe that I hope to grow soon as well!

I’ve got a lot to work on today to fix up the blog & our other various social media, but I wanted to drop a little note about it here first!

I appreciate all of you.

xo,

Cait

Important!

Important!

Just a quick note to our lovely followers – over the next few days, Single Mom Tribe will be moving – so our singlemomtribe.org address will no longer be valid. In the meantime, this same site will be available at singlemomtribe.home.blog until we can make the switch. Just bear with me – we will be back & better than ever as soon as we can!!!

So grateful for all of you.

Xo, Cait

Okay – enoUGH!!!!

Okay – enoUGH!!!!

So, I’ve mentioned I’m from the Midwest. It gets cold here, it snows, whatever – it’s just our way of life, ya know?

Until this year.

I literally cannot remember the last time (in all my 30-some years) that we have had this. much. snow.

So much in fact, that we have been literally snowed in with family in my home state for a week.

A freaking WEEK, y’all!

We actually made the best of it, and it hasn’t been horrible…other than the fact I am ready to be home again! But our family is very close, and we had a lot of bonding time this week, which was great.

We started out the week staying with my brother & his little fam – they have a 3 year old & a new baby, that my littlest sassy adores!

My oldest Sass was so sweet with him, too. I’m pretty sure they both think they need a baby brother now. Spoiler alert – NOT HAPPENING.

Of course we also had to do some baking…

Some Unc play time…

….annnnnd needed some alone time.

By the time Friday rolled around, we headed about ten miles north to stay with my dad for the remainder of our visit. We celebrated my upcoming birthday, so we were surrounded by family all weekend & we were loving it! My littlest enjoyed some more baby time….

and of course, we had to make some slime.

And both of my lovelies bonded over the Barbie Dreamhouse my littlest sassy is coveting lately.

In the end, we always cherish our time spent with family. But when it came time to go home – THIS is what we were greeted with outside

It’s hard to tell, but that is the looong country driveway drifted knee high – with hard packed snow that got the plow guy so stuck (twice!), he had to go back & get his bobcat to scoop it out. Oi.

Ugh, amiright?! So, we ended up staying ANOTHER day. Better safe than sorry, for sure. We shall try again tomorrow to make it back home!

I hope all of our Midwest friends are surviving just fine as well!

And stay tuned later in the week…I’ve got a fun surprise coming up!

Xo,

Cait