Momtourage Monday: Military Wife, Blogger and Photography Momma

1. How do you define Momtourage? Momtourage is your Go-to mom group. A unique group of ladies that support you no matter what, relate to you and lift each other up. Without judgment or shaming. A place where you can feel safe, be yourself and open up about this crazy roller coaster called motherhood. Oh and they also get together for those mommy play dates, let’s not forget about that. 

2 How do you balance Motherhood? With Grace, definitely with Grace. But honestly it’s not always there. I have to always be reminded to take care of myself first. Mentally, physically and emotionally. Those things are key for you to be a better mom, wife, friend… But trying to have it all together and keeping it up can be really overwhelming and you lose sight of the most important things. So yes, Grace is always my hero to Balance motherhood.

3. What is your mommy must have item? My Baby Carrier! My god, what would I do without it. Life changing for sure. Can’t imagine motherhood and no baby carrier. You can get so many things done while you baby-wear. It is simply amazing. I’ve traveled, breastfed, cleaned, cooked, shopped using it and I love it. Now my toddler wants to walk all the time but for breastfeeding and napping on the go it is my life saver. 

4 What is your Momtourage story? Well, let’s see… I’m a mommy of two kiddos. A 7 year old boy and a 2 year old girl. Since the beginning my husband has been hands on with house chores and with the kids. We always say it’s all about team work. That’s how we define our relationship and parenting. But when Kayden my eldest was 2 he decided to join the Military, something I was against since the beginning. But he went through with it anyways and I just followed along to keep my family together. (But let me tell you it was the best decision we have ever made because it has lead us to we’re we are now.) So he left for basic training and I remember being terrified about the thought of staying alone with my 2 year old son. All I could think of was that I didn’t know how to be a parent without my partner. How would I balance work, home, parenting and everything in between on my own. Soon after he left I learned that I could and I felt so proud about myself. I became so much stronger and independent and felt like the world couldn’t stop me. After he finished Basic Training we were stationed in NC and moved out of Puerto Rico. I left my job, my friends, my family and everything I knew to start a new life with the man I loved and give a better quality of life to our child. Only 2 weeks in and he got orders to Deploy to Afghanistan the next month. It all happened so quickly. Again I would have to handle everything on my own but this time in an unknown place where I didn’t know anybody. Everyone advised me to go back to Puerto Rico until he finished his tour but I decided to stay. I stayed because I didn’t want to run away from my fears and I wanted to grow as a woman and mother. And I definitely did. I even did things I never thought I could do. Right when he got back from his deployment I got pregnant with my second child, something everyone predicted hahah! I had been staying at home with Kayden only for a year so transitioning from 1 kid to 2 kids and staying at home all day with a toddler (4) and a breastfeeding on demand newborn was a struggle. When Mia was 6 months old I decided I needed a place to share my motherhood journey, my love for photos and everything I liked to help with my anxiety. My husband suggested Instagram, got me my first DSLR and rest is history. I’ve created my own little platform since then and I love connecting with other moms in the community. It has helped me to be much more open, social and take on new adventures. We are In the civil world now, loving every minute of it and better than ever. 

Be sure to check out more of Vil and her amazing family Here

Thank you so much Vil for sharing your story! As always we hope these stories encourage, or inspire other moms and moms to be!

Until next week….

XO,

Meka

Sips Tea…. literally

Many of you know I’m NOT a coffee drinker, but I sure do love a good tea blend! Recently I’ve been indulging in Adagio Tea and not only have I been loving it but so have the kids!

I love that they offer a caffeine free blend so I got the Three Little Pigs blend and honestly, I’ve been really loving that blend as much as the kids.

I also tried the Gemini .. bc HELLO June 17th over here. It has a nice blend of white tea, rose hips with a peach flavor to top it off. So delicious!

In addition to these awesome flavors I got a Harry Potter blend which is so good, it’s a chocolate blend.

One of my favorite purchases has been my tea thermostat because it literally keeps my tea hot ALL DAY! It has an infuser attached so you can enjoy loose tea as well.

You can snag one here and it’s only $29! A totally win when you want to have a good cup of tea throughout the work day or while you’re on the go!

Be sure to check out Adaigo Teas they have so many blends you won’t be disappointed and they currently have an Easter special going as well!

Until next time…..

Happy Blending!

Meka

Momtourage Monday: City Girl in a Southern World

1. How would you define Momtourage? I haven’t been to any momtourge events YET but from on the outside looking in, it looks to be an amazing group of woman supporting one another threw this journey of motherhood and daily mommy struggles.

2. How do you balance Motherhood? I wake up everyday and throw on my cape lol…… speaking honestly it’s a daily struggle everyday brings something new nothing like the day before. So I’ll say by waking up with a clear mindset ready for what that day will bring.

3. What is your Mommy must have item?

A sports bottle with WINE!!! just joking…. I must have this thing we call patience it’s not easy to find Lord knows. I search everyday for it, but no matter what with everyday that comes no matter how deep it’s hidden I always seem to find it!

4. What is your Momtourage story?

My story is one that would take years to explain…but to sum it up I’m a mother of 4 wonderful children 3 girls ages 17,15,& 12 and last but most certainly not least my most recent addition my 1year old baby boy! They are my world they are what I live for. I know all mom’s say it but for me it’s what keeps me grounded without them there is no me. I’m a stay at home mom with the struggle of a disability (Psoriatic  Arthritis) it’s a daily struggle all of its own. But my kids would never really know because I push threw for them without hesitation. My children and I recently moved to Charlotte, NC from Maryland something I wanted to do but never had the courage. One day I took a step out on faith and here we are… going from having their Dad active in their daily lives to having to do video calls and phone conversations is a huge struggle. Somehow we manage somehow I still have all my hair my edges still holding on cause Lord knows it’s hard with teenage girls and a toddler (Bless my little heart)! I’m a single Woman with 4 wonderful children. I say Single woman and not single parent because they have an amazing active father in their life, so I always say I’m SINGLE not a single mother to me it has two different meanings.

Thank you so much Esha for sharing your story! As always we hope these stories encourage, or inspire other moms and moms to be!

Until next week….

XO,

Meka

Spring Fashion

I’m seriously ready for warmer weather, why are we still dealing with SNOW 😩 Sunday I got to shoot with my favorite photographer in RDU, Erin and boy was it cold, but the pictures turned out pretty dope!

Bell sleeves are so in, and thanks to Target’s A New Day line I’m able to have a nice style at a low cost! I paired this super cute wrap dress with theses statement earrings from Charm City Noir

And I added another pop for color with my new crossbody from Madewell. I just love monogrammed items so of course I had to get the gold foil.

This crossbody is really going to be seen a lot, I’m so excited to pair it with my favorite spring looks. It comes in additional colors see here.

The thing I love about this wrap dress is that it compliments so many different body types!

The classic stripped blue and white helps it to be the perfect addition to my capsule wardrobe this spring!

So here’s to S P R I N G, May the bugs be less aggravating , and your allergies nonexistent! Until next time….

XO,

Meka

Momtourage Monday: Strength, Faith and Love!

1. How would you define Momtourage? Momtourage is a group of moms who understand and support each other. They share tips, and provide a safe place to discuss all the bad that comes with motherhood. They lift each other up and provide support when needed.

2. How do you balance Motherhood? I’m barely balancing, lol. It’s a daily struggle. I take it a day at a time, and when things do not go as planned, I don’t beat myself up. I know I get to start fresh every morning.

3. What is your Mommy must have item? My iPhone, it has my calendar, it’s my connection when I am away, and it holds countless apps that make my life easier.

4. What is your Momtourage story?  My story is long, but I’ll give a condensed version. I was your average mom and wife. I had a great corporate job, and so did my husband. We had a 2 year old son and I was pregnant with our 2nd son. Like was good. We adored each other and our son and could not wait to have another son. On a sunny beautiful day during our annual vacation, our lives shattered in a million pieces, pieces I am still trying to put back together. My husband broke his neck and was left paralyzed from the chest down. It has been 6 years since his horrific accident. Our eldest son is now 8 and our youngest is 5. It has been a struggle to say the least. I never expected my life to be this way. However, some things have not changed, and that’s the love we have for each other and for our kids. It’s that love that pushes us through each day. Life is a daily struggle, but I lean into life and I understand clearly that “life doesn’t happen to you, it happens for you”. We have taken these struggles and used them to our advantage. I know I am stronger, more compassionate, more hard working, and more determined then I would have ever been had this accident not happened. I know my boys are going to grow up with a unique set of experiences that will make them more empathic and more kind than most. They also see first hand, on a daily basis, that even when things are hard, you fight and you get it done. I hope they carry that fire with them always!

Thank you so much Yasmine for sharing your story! As always we hope these stories encourage, inspire and uplift other moms and moms to be!

Until next week…..

XO,

Meka

Momtourage Monday : Fashionable Mom killing it!

1. How would you define Momtourage?

The word Momtourage makes me think of a group of mom friends that you can share your ups and downs with and support one another. 

2. How do you balance Motherhood?

To try and balance motherhood, I try my best to stay organized and plan ahead.  That really only works 50% of the time because something always comes up with kids.  I’ve gotten better at adjusting at the last minute.  I really try to do the best I can with any obstacle that comes my way.

3. What is your Mommy must have item?

My mommy must-have item is a cute small cross-body bag. My cross-body bag is strapped to me most of the day. My phone, wallet keys, diaper, and fruit snacks are always in my bag.  If I carried a big purse I would probably leave it somewhere.

4. What is your Momtourage story? I am a full-time family fashion blogger.  My content is primarily based on my girls and their style. Working with your kids for a business can present some challenges. I try not push them to do anything they don’t want to do but at the same time, I have deadlines.  I try my best to keep our projects fun and simple.  Both of the girls are pretty good at cooperating to get things done.  The promise of cookies and ice cream also help.

As far as struggles as a mom, finding time for myself has been a challenge.  Since my “job” is to blog mainly about them and in addition to being a SAHM, it can be hard to separate work and do something for myself.  Weeks will go by I haven’t had any time to myself. This year I’m taking more time for myself on a regular basis. It’s important that we have a moment to ourselves.

Motherhood can be challenging but I just try to be the best mom I can be, not what others think I should be.

Thank you so much Trina for sharing your story! Be sure to check out Trina and her beautiful family here! As always we hope these stories encourage, or inspire other moms and moms to be!

Until next week….

XO,

Meka

Momtourage Monday: American Girl in a Caribbean world

1. How would you define Momtourage?

My Momtourage is my family and close friends. My mom plays a major role in my Momtourage. The boys know her as “Honey”. She spends the night Monday-Friday to help with getting the boys ready for school as well so drop off at school. My family (aunts, grandmother, sister) helps with date night or just relief time. Our friends help with support and encouragement.

2. How do you balance Motherhood?

How do I balance Motherhood…umm I don’t. I’m still learning how to take time for me. Motherhood have taken over my life completely. Although, being a wife and mother is rewarding, it can also be stressful. If we are not careful, we can easily lose ourselves in the process of trying to build our families. Often, I tend to take care of my household and neglect myself. After, self evaluation … I’ve realized that, I  cannot give what I  don’t have. So now, when I need time to myself, I take time. Having boys,  I’m always busy, whether it’s straightening up after them, doing homework, or having to be at baseball, basketball practice or a school event. One of my goals this year is to get “me” back. I have a membership at Massage Envy and I try to go at least once a month as my “me day”. I’ve had my membership for about 4 years, but don’t go as much as I should.

3. What is your Mommy must have item?

Sorry…I had to make it plural…My phone and Jared’s epi pen is most important, both boys are asthmatic and Jared has severe allergies along with my planner is second- to make sure I have all their doctors appointments scheduled.

4. What is your Momtourage story?

My husband and I started our family the “non transitional” way as some may call it. We had Joshua, then got married,  when Joshua was 3, and had another child 3 years later. I was a “nontraditional” college graduate. I attended college at 25 years old. I finished up my degree while I was pregnant with Joshua.

I am a wife. My husband is from a small island in the Caribbean named Saint Kitts. Having a mixed cultural family makes us unique.  We have traveled to St. Kitts as a family 5 times. We usually travel to visit my husband family every other year during Christmas time. This new culture has made me open minded and taught me so many things. I have learned how to cook Caribbean foods. (Which I love, because I love cooking). I have also, sampled different Caribbean dishes that I never would have sampled prior to meeting my husband. I have also dressed up in a mascarade costume, during their carnival time. Having a mixed cultural family and living in the U.S. has it’s challenges.  The boys do not get to see their extended family often. We usually communicate with my in laws through social media. Visiting St. Kitts has taught the boys and I about small island Caribbean culture. Traveling has taught us how to be open minded to any culture that we may come across in life.

Thank you so much Shaketa for sharing your story! As always we hope these stories encourage, or inspire other moms and moms to be!

Until next week….

XO,

Meka

Momtourage Monday: SAHM staying true to herself!

1. How would you define Momtourage? 

To me, a momtourage sounds like a really bomb sisterhood! I love and will forever appreciate moms supporting, uplifting and encouraging one another. Community as a mama is so important and we all go through ups and downs during our parenting journey; a momtourage reminds us that we’re not alone and that we’re all in this together.

2. How do you balance Motherhood? 

Lots of coffee and Jesus (ha!) but in all honesty, I do plan my week out in advance to be able to fit writing, home and family time in. I do my best to not over crowd my schedule and learned the art of saying no nicely. I like to keep it simple, and I’ve accepted that I can’t do everything. Scaling back has allowed me to do more really well. Motherhood is a 24hr, 365 job and when you’re trying to do so many things in a day, less is more.

3. What is your Mommy must have item? 

Hands down, my planner! It kinda has my whole life embedded in those pages. I don’t know what I would do without it. Probably buy a new one I guess, it’s just that important to me!

4. What is your Momtourage story?

My husband Shawn and I are proud parents to our almost four month old son Isaiah who was born in November of 2017. I went into labor Halloween night and he was born via c-section the very next day. I’ve struggled with not being able to breastfeed as well as dealing with a tough recovery from a major operation. I started blogging about motherhood and taking photos of my son since the day he was born but from the very beginning wanted my online presence to be as authentic as possible. I’ve dealt with feelings of inadequacy very heavily when entering the instamom scene, mostly because I would see other women with beautiful homes and expensive clothes on their babies. I love the thrift store and was rockin’ sweat shirts and spit up stained leggings in most of my photos! There was a point where I longed to be exactly like everyone else and wanted to dress up my reality to match what I saw. After thinking about who I was and what kind of writer I wanted to become, I knew doing so wouldn’t capture how much I love my everyday motherhood moments- baby drool and all! Each woman has her own special story to tell, mines just so happens to be in my pajamas. So I write and take photos about all kinds of things things that inspire me, but it’s mostly how much I love being Isaiah’s mommy. I hope that through my content/ feed that message is can inspire someone to be the best version of themselves. You are more than enough!

Be sure to check out more of Najah and her amazing family Here

Thank you so much Najah for sharing your story! As always we hope these stories encourage, or inspire other moms and moms to be!

Until next week….

XO,

Meka

Health is Wealth

*** This is NOT a sponsored post we just love it THAT much****

So many of you follow me on Instagram and if so you’ve seen our Instastory of me and the boys at the chiropractor. I have been getting lots of questions about why we go to the chiropractor so I decided to sum it all up right here! First off let me say we LOVE Twin City Health

As many of you know I suffer from Rheumatoid Arthritis, and have been since age 17! Yesssssss S E V E N T E E N. I get adjustments to assist with the pain management of my RA. This was so needed when I was pregnant with Axel, because for some reason my RA took the worst toll on my body, to the point that I had to go out of work on short term disability.

When Jagger was about 9-11 months old he would have issues using with his bowels. I would try so many natural remedies including prune juice with warm water. Once he started getting his adjustments at Twin City Health he was as regular as any normal baby. I seriously could not believe it, if you know me you know how I am when it comes to proving stuff I need PROOF!

I have never really talked about this topic, maybe because I don’t want anyone to look at my child in any other way that the vibrate, engeretic little boy that he is, so only a select few close friends and family know that Maveric was suffering from Febrile Seizures since 18 months old. If you’re not familiar with the term, basically when Maveric gets sick/ congested his temperature would spike so fast that his body needed to break the fever so it would force him to have a seizure. Most children tend to “out grow” febrile seizures by age 5.

We started seeing Dr. Tom and his team at Twin City Health when Maveric was 3. During our process we went from almost 1 seizure every other month to 1 seizure every 6-8 months. Last year we ALMOST made it a year seizure free then Maveric had one at school in October. When we went to Twin City Health Dr. Tom took x-rays of Maveric’s spine and that helped him to really narrow down the location that needed to be adjusted with Maveric. I have noticed a huge improvement in Maveric’s decline in seizures and I truly look forward to the day that we are 100% seizure FREE!!!!!!

Axel has been going just for preventative reasons, one day I told Dr. J that he hadn’t had a BM in 3 days and she adjusted him and said ” ok be careful he should have one by the end of the day” and no lie he let out the biggest BM by the time we got home!

“Your spine is the lifeline for all of your body’s functions. The spine is a key element to healing as it protects your central nervous system”. All of the doctors at Twin City Health have truly been a dream to work with, we just love the entire atmosphere! If you’re looking to get healthy from the outside in, then you really need to check out our friends at Twin City Health. Tell them that #HWTH sent you. Trust me you will love the family environment and the wealth of information and classes. Cheers to a healthier 2018. Until next time…

XO,
Meka

Momtourage Monday: Jet Setting Momma

1. How would you define Momtourage?

To me momtourage is a tribe that doesn’t judge, a sisterhood that’s there to pick you up when you’re down and it’s a way of life!

2. How do you balance Motherhood?

I balance motherhood by doing what I love the most which is work. You’re probably going to think I’m crazy for but I love going to work. I feel so refreshed those 3 days that I’m gone and get to interact with adults. I also see it as a mini vacation. I get to do my hair, my nails and most importantly rest. It’s something that’s always been a challenge when I’m home since I have two under two.

3. What is your Mommy must have item?

My camera! It was a gift when I had my first born but didn’t start using it till recently. It’s definitely been the best investment ever to have pictures of my girls as they grow up.

4. What is your Momtourage story?

Let’s see where do I begin… my husband and I are high school sweethearts. We’ve been together for almost 15 years and married for almost 5. Becoming parents has made our relationship more special and stronger. I can definitely say that I love this version of us so much more than the just us two version. He’s always been a very supportive husband and even with my crazy difficult flying schedule he still holds it down for us. I’m very lucky in this aspect and so are our girls!

I also suffered PPD after having my first child. It was such a dark time in my life but someone told me to never loose sight of who I was before having a baby. That if I loved flying to continue to fly. That I should never give up own my own dreams because my girls will have their own at some point and leave the nest. This always stuck with me and ever since then I’ve decided to be a better me for them. Mamas always remember self care is the most important thing after becoming a mother, don’t you ladies ever forget that!

Love always,

Maggie Tompkins

Be sure to check out more of Maggie and her amazing family Here

Thank you so much Maggie for sharing your story! As always we hope these stories encourage, or inspire other moms and moms to be!

Until next week….

XO,

Meka

Momtourage Monday: Peaceful Momma

1. How would you define Momtourage?

Momtourage is my peace. It’s a space of understanding and reassurance that everything you’re doing is just fine. I’m forever grateful for my tribe.

2. How do you balance Motherhood?

I’m honestly still learning Motherhood, being a full time mom, student, and business owner , I often have to step back and just simply put down my phone, or just put off my todo list until the next day. To me balancing motherhood is being able to be like water, and to know it’s okay to change your mind, and it’s totally okay to not complete all you desired. Balancing Motherhood is also letting go of the fear and guilt of taking a couple of hours to yourself. It’s easy to loose yourself in Motherhood, I just remind myself that I’m no good for anyone including myself pouring from an empty cup.

3. What are your Mommy must have items?

(I have a couple)

My mommy must have is a cup of Musa Moon Tea or Fruit Detox Water . Both give me that moment of relaxation and encouragement for the day.

My crystals whether it be in my Head Wrap or my jewelry. Grounding, Protection, Prosperity , Peace, Patience, and Love are all things I seek to obtain. Each stone I carry helps support and enhance the energy and power I already carry.

A journal : For the many downloads I receive a day, to release anything that maybe taking up unnecessary space, and for my several attempts of planning my week.

4. What is your Momtourage story?

My story of Motherhood is a journey of truth and understanding. Becoming a single mother when my Sun was about 7 months, was a true product of an energy I manifested. Growing up I would always say I NEVER wanted to be a single mom. I would have never imagined my life to be this way.

I went through ALL of the self inflicted pain of emotions- feeling embarrassed, ashamed, unworthy, insecure, and failure.

Present day I wouldn’t change a thing. I’m grateful for EVERY part of my journey. Without pain I wouldn’t have faced my fears, Without pain I wouldn’t have had the courage to truly walk in the path of my life’s purpose.

Today I walk with my head high, alongside of my Young King. During my healing process, I quit my job and started my own business. Today that leap of trusting self is still evolving.

Don’t be afraid to heal yourself.

I gave myself the permission to feel and the space to process my human experience. My journey required me to truly connect within to what I needed to be full and to be the Best Mom to MY standards to my Sun. Motherhood has taught me to NEVER compare myself to anyone. I may not have the Motherhood journey according to the American Dream, but I am happy, Musa is filled with joy and wants for nothing.

Motherhood has taught me to be open to new possibilities and ways of thinking. Motherhood is honestly what you make it. It’s not a race nor competition. It reminds me that there are no true guidelines in your success or happiness in your journey. Everyone’s experience is different, and that is totally okay.

You are Worthy

You are Loved

You are Powerful

Thank you so much Brea for sharing your story! As always we hope these stories encourage, or inspire other moms and moms to be!

Until next week….

XO,

Meka

Momtourage Monday: Killing it in Silicon Valley

1. How do you define Momtourage?

Momtourage is my tribe. My village. My circle of support from moms I personally know

and ones in my extended network. They offer affirmations, prayers, cheers, and words of encouragement and help me understand that I am not alone and we are on this journey together.

2. How do you balance Motherhood?

As a first-time mom, it’s about prioritizing and understanding what is important to me and my family. I was in several leadership positions within my church and sorority and decided to take a step back once my son arrived so that I could shift my focus and completely focus on him. Once my son became a bit older and I had a better view on balancing everything, I was able to resume my duties in my roles. My husband is super amazing and has constantly challenged me to take more “me time” and indulge in self – care, so I’m learning to do that more as well so that I can feel energized and renewed for my husband and son. Whether it’s a regular visit to the hair salon, my manicure and pedicure appointments, a coffee or smoothie break, or sleeping in for an extra hour, these little moments allow me to maintain my sanity.

3. What is your Mommy must have item?

My iPhone X for the amazing portrait option + battery chargers! I keep a charger in my bag as well as in my car so that I’m always ready to capture those special moments.

4. What is your Momtourage story?

My husband and I moved to Silicon Valley almost 3 years ago after my husband was recruited to work at a large tech company. It was a huge move for us since we are both from North Carolina and Virginia. Being 3,000 miles away from family was definitely hard (still is) and became even more challenging as we began planning for our family. Since we do not have any close relatives here, we have learned to depend on our church family, friends who are like family, neighbors, coworkers and sorority sisters and fraternity brothers to fill in the gap during this new season of our lives. It can be frustrating at times when we want to have a real date, spend a night away or attend an evening function because our parents aren’t readily available but we always think of creative ways to spend time together.

A month after I returned from maternity leave, I was given the opportunity to craft my role and was promoted. Around the same time, my husband was tasked with taking on additional responsibilities at work. While we’ve excelled in our careers, it’s also required us to make sacrifices and balance more effectively. I had a huge meeting planned with one of my new board members at a large tech company along with my local and national presidents. My son was not feeling well, so my husband and I had to make an executive decision that he would stay home and cancel one of his meetings as it was important that I attend this meeting and enjoy my moment with our national president. It’s a blessing to be able to able to be a super hero at work as well as a mommy hero at home. Motherhood is a huge balancing act, but I wouldn’t change any of it for the world.

Thank you so much Candrice for sharing your story! As always we hope these stories encourage, or inspire other moms and moms to be!

Until next week….

XO,

Meka