Amazing Free Kiinde Sample Kit!!

This is an amazing offer on a very versatile feeding kit. It’s an all in one and something I recently came across but was reluctant to try as baby wouldn’t take to the bottle much. The full kit is $99 but this sample also comes with a coupon for $50 off.


Sharing from Kiinde:

Try out Direct-Pumping with the Kiinde Twist Breastfeeding System for FREE!

This free kit is valued at over $50. It includes Twist Pouches and adapters for your specific pump.

Use code FREEKIT828 at:

And once you decide you love Twist, it includes a coupon for $50 OFF THE COMPLETE TWIST GIFT SET (reg. price $99.99)!

We’ll even split shipping and handling with you. Flat S&H rate of $3.50 applies for anywhere in the U.S.

Expires September 3.
U.S. customers only.
Limit 1 per customer.

Comment on and share this post – help us spread the word (and the love)!

If you are unfamiliar with Twist….
Twist is a revolutionary new Direct-Pump, Direct-Feed breast milk storage system that allows you to pump directly into breast milk storage pouches (Twist Pouches) from ANY major pump brand (all adapters included). You can feed directly from Twist Pouches using our Active Latch Nipples, or using nipples from other brands.
Now you can pump, store, and feed breast milk with NO milk transfers, fewer dirty dishes, and no air in your baby’s meal.
Watch our new Twist video here:

You can read more about the Twist Breastfeeding system here:

You can read about Kozii, our low temperature warmer designed specifically to preserve nutrients in breast milk, here:

And you can read about Foodii, our toddler feeding system that allows you to continue to use Twist Pouches for pureed food, here:

Good luck, and happy pumping!
Hurry – entry is only open until Sept. 3!


Because Crispy is Always Yummy

Sometimes you just want to jazz up your ravioli! At least I do, so when regular ravioli just doesn’t cut it, I take out a nonstick and cook it pot sticker style! Serve with your favorite sauce.

Simple. And delicious.

1. Oil the non stick
2. Place ravioli in and cover (I use a glass top so I can see)
3. Lift cover a little bit and squirt water underneath to steam the ravioli and help it cool. Replace cover
4. Flip and repeat
5. Enjoy

My First Tears After Baby

We all experience postpartum differently; some of us feel happy, some of us feel sad, all of us probably feel tired, and I felt a little of both.

The little BobaBaby just turned 4 months old and it seems like so long ago that I held him for the first time. I miss his newborn size, how small and light he was, how comical it looked to have such a cute little leach attached to my breast, and I miss the milia that speckled his nose like a constellation.

If I had the chance to do it all over, there are a few things that I would do differently, a few pieces of advice I wish I would have been given.

Life after baby consisted of me hardly ever leaving my room. BobaDad did all the laundry, walked and bathed the dog, made dinner, spoon fed me, etc etc.

My first bout of tears came as I sat there, breastfeeding BobaBaby, admiring how beautiful and precious he was. As I stared at him, all exhausted and drained, I started thinking about single moms and dads and how overwhelmed they must be doing this all on their own. I tried to imagine myself doing it all on my own, without my husband, and I couldn’t even picture it. It would have been impossible, I would have felt so alone. And I cried, uncontrollably.

Despite my best efforts to hold it in, I still whimpered, and the tears still fell, and my husband still noticed and asked me what was wrong. It wasn’t that I was sad. I was actually very happy. I had a healthy baby in my arms, a baby that up until delivery I dared not be too excited about due to fear that he may be taken from me like the first one I lost. I shared my feelings with my husband, and he too got misty eyed and agreed. Parenthood is hard. It’s draining, especially in the first few days or even weeks as you try to figure everything out or find a pattern. Combine that with inexperience, uncertainty, hunger, sleep deprivation, fear of SIDS, the desire to do everything right, the weight of responsibility for another human life, and you’ve got the most demanding job in the world in which failure is not an option. It’s really sink or swim, but even if you feel like you’re sinking, I want to remind you that you are not. You are swimming, and you are swimming just fine!

It’s really moments like these that everyone discovers there’s no limit to their potential.

I also thought about the new parents who could not take it easy and had to go back to work right away in order to pay the bills. Usually they have help, someone to watch baby as they worked. But what if they didn’t I thought, then how would that even work?! I imagined myself in these difficult situations and it just made me cry more, I felt grateful for what I had, and I felt sad for anyone who wanted to but wouldn’t have the choice to spend these beginnings with their new babies. Imagining myself in these positions, I don’t think I’d make it, and that’s the moment I started to realize just how much my parents did for me and my sisters. They had no one, and they didn’t even speak the language when we came here as kids.

In those moments I also developed a brand new respect for all parents I knew. I’ve always known they had a lot on their plate, but until I experienced it first hand, I really had no idea.

To all the parents out there, I salute you! You are amazing and you should know it!

Mac and Cheese Stuffed Portabello

Who doesn't love Mac & cheese?

Who doesn’t love Mac & cheese?

Costco currently has a sale on the Annie’s Mac and Cheese. I only started eating this on occasion within the last 3 years or so. Having 10+ hour work days didn’t leave me with much time to make food, so quick and easy it was. And when I first saw these for only $1 a box and it was organic, I just had to try! I’m not really a huge fan of cheese, but melted cheese is okay with me–although I wouldn’t get a double double at In N Out burger, because that’s just too much cheese. (My usual order at In N Out is a double single, animal style, no lettuce, tomatoes, or pickles, French fries, and a water. I like to grab some lemon slices from the counter and squeeze that onto my burger as well…mmm, delicious!)

So, back to the Annie’s, BobaDad loves all things cheese, and Mac & Cheese is one of his top ranked–he even jokes that as long as I can make this, he won’t be too concerned about my lack of cooking skills and dinner.

But plain Mac and Cheese can only be enjoyed so much before you need to spice it up, so here’s a variation I like to make that doesn’t add too much time to preparation and can still be done while the baby naps.

Serves 4

Worcester Sauce
Balsamic Vinegar
Olive oil
Garlic Powder
*truffle oil if you really want a mushroom overload
1 box Annie’s Mac and Cheese
4 large Portabello mushrooms
1 chinese sausage (I like the pork and chicken variety as they taste sweeter) *before baby, I used bacon, but bacon just takes too long if you want it perfect and makes too much of a mess–definitely not something you want to deal with having a newborn in the house!

1. Salt and boil water for the pasta
2. Take all the sauces and combine in a bowl or marinating container. I do it to taste, I don’t normally measure it but I would start equal parts olive oil, Worchester, and Balsamic, then add some dashes of paprika and garlic, or you can try cayenne to boost it up.
3. They say just wiping mushrooms are fine, but I like to rinse them anyway, the choice is yours. Clean your mushrooms and take out the center. Then coat in the marinade and set aside
4. Dice up the chinese sausage and the mushroom stems (or you can opt out of the stems) and wok/fry those up until crispy and put aside
5. If you haven’t already, add the pasta into the water and drain when done
6. Prepare the cheese mixture, although I like to add extra milk and let it reduce. Add pasta and sausage mix
7. Take the mushrooms and place on cookie sheet
8. Stuff mushrooms and place in oven at 350 degrees for 20ish minutes. (I bet you can already tell what a consistent cook I am lol)
9. Garnish with whatever you like: I like breadcrumbs before baking, but here I just have Sundried tomatoes
10. Eat and enjoy!

Huggies Wipes Have “Glass?”

Huggies Investigating Claims of Glass Found in Baby Wipes

*Update: Huggies does not use glass in their manufacturing process and these shiny specks are fibers

Oh my! If this is true, that’s a major concern! I normally use dry wipes from Medline and soak in water because it’s soft and pure and natural, and what else could be better for baby?

But when I go out and need a quick wipe because I can’t afford to take my time spraying the wipe with a peri bottle I keep in the diaper bag, I use Huggies wipes.

Tried Pampers once and found it slimy whereas Huggies felt clean.

I love and used to use Honest wipes but they are currently over budget. 😦

I have no clue how many wipes may be affected but it appears more and more reports are coming in. Please check your wipes and post to Huggies as well as here so others may know. What line of wipe? What batch? What expiration?

I was able to check my new case before BobaBaby started crying, and although I see that “shimmer,” it doesn’t feel like glass. I’ve also rubbed it over my hands, no itch.

I have the natural care plus wipes with the circle pattern instead of the super cute duckies on clouds <–that was 90% why I chose to buy it so you can imagine how disappointed I am!! 1160 wipes and I can’t return it because it’s opened. But there would have been no way to know if I hadn’t opened it. Who knows how long before I can use it up too?

Wintermelon Crema 30% Sweet, No Ice, With Boba

Nothing like the joy of walking with a boba in hand

Nothing like the joy of walking with a boba in hand

I’m a boba drink addict. I love food, but there’s just something about that perfect cup of boba that stays with you and keeps you happy until the next one.

Maybe boba is my coffee.

I remember the days when I was pregnant, and luckily for me, it was a fairly easy pregnancy. No morning sickness, nada, none, zilch! Cramps? What the heck are those? Although I should say I must be one of the fortunate ones to rarely have cramps, if ever. I remember a friend whose cramps were so bad she wouldn’t be able to move and would be in tears from the pain and the migraines that came along with her period. And I would think to myself, “Really? Can’t be that bad….” But as I’ve grown up to realize, yes, for some people it is that bad.

Anyway, aside from sciatic pain that would shoot down the legs and bring this pregnant woman to her knees, pregnancy was pretty uneventful for me–except this one time when I was thought I was going into labor but it was just gas. What a story that was!

So, ladies, I know pregnancy is tough as we are going through it, but I can assure you that when it comes to food cravings, or boba cravings as in my case, those cravings are so much easier to satisfy when the little one is inside versus when he or she is out here.

I used to be able to just get up and go–although as I hit my 9th month I usually had a friend come with, but I was able to go pretty much whenever I wanted, wherever I wanted. Now? Nope, not gonna happen. A crying baby in the car with no one else except me and I’m the one driving just isn’t going to work.

So, boba drinks which used to be an every other day thing, became a once a week thing and then became an once every two week thing during pregnancy (no milk, 30% sweetness), is now a “who knows when” kind of indulgence.

But today, TODAY I got my first drink! Baby and all! And the parking angels gave me a spot at the end of the block and even though it’s a Friday night at 6p, my boba fairy cleared the line for my arrival only for me to see 20 people go into after me! *phew*

And you guessed it, it was a wintermelon crema, 30% sweet, no ice from I-Tea. I was really wanting to try something new, something different–but what if I didn’t like it? And there were so many things I wanted to try, like the hot ginger milk, or matcha smoothie with red bean, but I stuck with the wintermelon, simply because I had it before From I-Tea and it didn’t disappoint.

I couldn’t very well risk my first trip in ages to get something I may not like! My favorite is actually Jasmine, but theirs isn’t good.

We shall see what drink lies in store next time.

Which To Sacrifice? Stay At Home or Go Back To Work?

I’m faced with such a dilemma, and it’s been looming over me. Any advice and/or feedback would be greatly appreciated.

I currently live with my in laws, and they are wonderful people, however, when it comes to my baby, they are too much and I don’t know how long I can tolerate being around them on a daily basis with them having near free reign to my child. The issue is that despite their good intentions (I’m assuming), we do not have the same parenting styles and I find them too possessive and overbearing of my child, which at many times, they seem to act like is theirs. Or maybe it’s just a clash of personalities. Oil and water are fine on their own, but now with baby here, oil and water just can’t mix.

So I am faced with a dilemma: stay at home and raise BobaBaby with all the ups and downs of a new baby and lose my financial independence, or go back to work so BobaDad and I can afford to get our own home and move out faster? But that means leaving the precious baby in the crutches of the in laws during his most vulnerable and fundamental times of development. Which not to say is detrimental, but “if you want something done right, you have to do it yourself” mentality, and  I really feel the first years are most crucial!

And there is nothing wrong with having sitters, however, it is difficult being the control freak that I am to find someone who is a stranger that I’m supposed to trust with the baby. And say I do find this special someone, it will not be without cost. So then, is it better to spend the cost on a sitter while I go to work, or just do it myself? I’ve always been a do it yourselfer, and I don’t know if I would want to give up baby and me time to someone else. But it is probably more that I can’t and won’t be able to bring myself to hand over baby.

And with getting a sitter will also be complicated in that it will be seen as a great insult to the in laws that we’d rather entrust our child–who in their minds is probably more accurately referred to as “their grandchild,” (because at times BobaBaby seems like he belongs to them more than he belongs to his actual parents)–than to family.

Which then reminds me of a saying I’ve always found to be of wisdom: never do business with family. You really can’t make the same demands or “fire” them once they’re hired.

What have those of you faced with a similar decision decided to go with? Give up career or place on hold to raise baby? Or continue career and have baby looked after by a sitter or family? Any advice? How did it go, would you do anything differently? And if faced with my situation, what would you choose?

Advice to Mother in Laws and My Future Self

My advice to my future self as a mother in law, as well as all current or soon to be mother in laws…

Being a daughter in law with a brand new baby has given me insight into the in law wars. Before the baby, I’ve had no issues with my in laws-we live together, and they’re wonderful people and we each do our own thing. Even during my pregnancy, everything was pretty normal. But after my pregnancy, that’s when things started to change…and not for the better.

All of a sudden, I was being told what to do, how to do it, etc etc–and this included my own parents. Everyone claimed they were trying to help and just giving advice, to which I have to say: if you’re making a suggestion, they say, “How about…” or “Try…” or “Maybe…” But when you say things like “Stop…” or “Don’t” or constantly tell me my child is cold and I need to put more clothes on him, you have stopped trying to be helpful and are now overstepping your bounds.

My theory on why daughter in laws start to get annoyed with or dislike their in laws after a baby is because the in laws love the baby too much.

Let me explain: being a grandparent is not a right by any means, it is a privilege. And that cute little baby that you love so much–well, that baby is not yours. It’s your grandchild, but you have zero say in matters. It’s your son’s child, so be careful not to treat the baby as your own, because that’s where the drama starts.

When you get too involved in your grandchild, you are invading the mom’s space. The baby is an extension of her, if you’ve gone from doing your own things and rarely interacting with your daughter in law to now constantly fawning over baby, you are most likely invading her space. She’s not used to you paying so much attention to her or something of hers.

Honestly, you already had your chance raising your son, and as much as everyone loves a little baby, it’s time to step back and let the kids have a go. If they need or want help, you can be sure that they will ask. If you are overstepping your bounds, you may or may not be informed, and if you are not informed and continue your same actions, you are unknowingly putting yourself in a despise category.

So as a daughter in law and a future mother in law later in life, here is my advice to myself:

1. On D-day, do not try to rush into the delivery room the moment you hear the baby’s first cries. This is crucial bonding time for mom and baby during what’s known as the golden hour. Unless you were asked to come in, just stay exactly where you were.

2. Childbirth is not a spectator sport, unless you were asked to, or were previously given the okay to be there, you probably should leave the room. A woman in labor has too much going on to ask you to please leave.

3. Try your best not to say “Let me hold,” and instead, ask, “Can I hold….” Words make a world of a difference, and when it comes to holding a baby, you should always ask first. Especially during the first weeks when baby is asleep most of the time, and mom and dad are constantly feeding, changing diapers, and soothing–it is not right for you to come up every time the baby is awake to try and take him because he’s awake and you want to play. As exhausted as mom is, she wants the reward of being able to see her baby awake and gazing at her too.

4. If you ask to hold the baby and mom says no thank you, do not ask again until the situation changes, or at least an hour has passed.

5. If you are offering to hold the baby to “help out,” you should be sure that this is the help your daughter in law wants.

6. Wash your hands!! It is beyond my understanding why my in laws refuse to wash their hands, constantly claiming that they are clean. Well, you just bought something and paid cash, it’s not clean. You just ate greasy food with your hands, they are not clean. You just wiped your mouth with a napkin and then used that napkin to wipe your hands and then did not wash with water. It is not clean! I struggle with my in laws and my husband’s grandmother on a near daily basis in regards to this. I’m not one to disrespectfully say it to your face. When I ask you to and you refuse and snatch my baby, I cannot do anything in part due to showing cultural respect. But keep this up, and I can assure you that when, not if, but when they move out, you will not see as much of them as you would has you been more mindful of the mom’s wishes.

5. Mother in laws tend to have it a little harder because as women, we love babies more than men. This means we also must be more careful–do not hog the baby!! If you’ve been holding the baby a while or see the mom looking your way, please ask, “would you like the baby back?” Not all daughter in laws are going to demand their child back, so please be courteous.

6. It is natural if the baby and mom are closer to the maternal grandparents than the paternal grandparents. Baby goes where mom goes, and baby is usually closer to mom than dad.

7. Your son has less rights to the baby than his wife. If you are uncomfortable asking your daughter in law about something, you can ask your son. But if you demand, you are likely to cause stress between your son and his wife as well as jeopardize how much your daughter in law will want you around.

There are many little tidbits about my own experiences of frustrations and annoyances towards the baby’s grandparents on both sides, but I’ll leave those to rant posts.

I wanted to keep this as a general reminder for myself in the future so I can remember not to do the things to my future daughter in law that I currently dislike as a new mom and daughter in law today.

Hope this helps some of you. I know we all have good intentions, but we should constantly remind ourselves: this is not our baby, and respect whatever the mom wishes. It’s hard to know if the mom doesn’t discuss it with you because you may not have that type of relationship, or if there is a language barrier, but just be mindful not to “help yourself” to the baby and ask for permission every time.

As you may have heard, the road to hell is paved with good intentions. Don’t accidentally put yourself on that path.


What advice do you wish your mother in law to have? Or how has becoming a mother changed your perspective to shape you when it’s your turn?

Marriage and Last Names

As a child, I’ve always said that when I grow up I would not be changing my last name. Before dating, this fact was made known: why waste time if this was going to be a deal breaker for someone?

Years come and go and BobaBoy and I met, fell in love, and got married, and had a beautiful baby boy–now making us BobaDad and BobaMom.

So back to the last name: BobaDad didn’t mind that I kept my last name, but when it came to children that was a definite no. (That’ll probably be another post). The fact that my name did not sound good with his last name also helped 😉

So anyway, a few days ago I was helping a friend update his Ok Cupid profile and the question came up about changing last names after marriage. His response: if she won’t change it, that’s a deal breaker. Naturally, being me, I was surprised. “Really?!” I asked, thinking he would say he was just kidding, but no, he was dead serious.

And then today on Facebook, some random link led me to reccomendations for other random links in which one of them was what men really think about women keeping their last names. (notice how all the negatives are anonymous?)

Well, out of everyone I know, I am the only one to keep my last name, as well as my sister (although her reasons are different). It’s a little disappointing that even my friends who said they do not plan to change their names ended up doing so or hypenating.

Some think I’m weird for not changing my name, I think it would be weird if I did.

Reasons why I kept my last name:

  1. It’s the name I spent my life growing up with and is very much a part of my identity.
  2. It never occurred to me as something I would even consider: I love my name.
  3. Even if I did consider it, the new last name just didn’t sound good with mine.
  4. In the vietnamese culture, women kept their last names.
  5. Why bother with the hassle of having to redo all legal documents and paperwork. Seems so much simpler not to ever have to explain to someone who you are.

Some argue it’s a feminist thing, and that it’s ironic and some even go as far to say stupid that women keep their last names when it belonged to a man. Well, let me just insert my thoughts here: you’re absolutely right in that it did belong to a man, but that was at one point in time, and it doesn’t change the fact that it was given to me and has become my name. So being that it is my name now, I am exercising my right not to have to change it to another man’s name. So, starting with me, it is now a woman’s name.

Men (not all) are so full of themselves when they demand that a woman change her name when the thought of him ever changing his own is ludicrous. “Because it’s tradition,” they say. Or, “because that’s the way it is and has always been.” Well, just because something has always been a certain way doesn’t make it right.

And I will keep my name for the pure reason that I simply want to. Do I love my husband any less? No. Does he love me any less? No.

And men, please don’t ever argue: “if you love me you’d take my name,” because if you loved her, you wouldn’t make her. And on a similar note, if you love her, why don’t you be an even bigger man and take hers?

But really, it’s not about whether a person keeps their last name or changes their last name, it’s about them having the choice and the decision from that choice being respected regardless of what it is.

Whatever you choose, good for you!