About danielleridgway

Momma to an angel and a rainbow. Journeying through grief, parenting after loss, and living life one day at a time. Want to hear more from me? Follow me on Instagram: @danii_ridgway If you have any other questions or anything else, just let me know. Thanks for reading!

6 Self Care Journaling Prompts

No matter if you’re a good writer or not, journaling is healing. When used as a self reflective tool, writing can help organize your thoughts and come to conclusions about what you’re going through in life.

The hardest part of it all is just starting.

Sometimes it’s difficult to think about what to write. Prompts are a great starting point to get your thoughts moving.

Here’s six writing prompts that I find myself going back to when I journal for self care.

I hope they help you too.

1. What do you wish you could say to someone if there were no consequences?
2. Why do other people look up to you?
3. What is something you accomplished this week that you’re proud of?
4. How would your child/spouse/parent describe you?
5. What does your dream life look love?
6. Write a letter to someone who’s impacted your life the most.

Again, the hardest part to writing is starting. These are all thoughtful jumping points that can help you pick up a pen or type on whatever device.

Remember, you deserve time to be you and do what’s best for you.

If you’d like to see more of my personal journaling prompts, let me know and I’ll share more. Of course, if you have helpful prompts to share, please let me know in the comments.

One Thing that Drives Moms Nuts.

There’s an age old question that plagues every household. My family of two has it and I’m sure families of a lot more have it too.

I’m not sure how it starts and I’m sure as heck not sure how to resolve the problem either.

So what’s this great issue? Take a look…

One type of silverware is lacking way more than the others. Our family’s most lost item: spoons.

Somehow Mila and I have been able to lose all but four spoons. I started off with a ton of regular spoons when I first moved in. Then bought the rainbow ones last year.

They’ve all but disappeared for no reason.

When I went on the great spoon hunt, here are some of the places I found them:

  • In the couch
  • Under Mila’s bed… that she’s never in
  • Dollhouses
  • Bags
  • Cars
  • Toy box
  • Laundry basket

I have no idea how so many spoons have disappeared, but I need a secret set to store away for when this happens.

So, what type of silverware goes missing in your house the most?

Have An Anxious Dog or Human: Try Happy Dogs CBD

Max, our Old English Lab, suffers from separation anxiety and hyperactivity.

I never really noticed his anxiety until I started working away from home in the middle of last year. When I’d come home for lunch, there would be shoes torn apart or papers shredded. This was not typical behavior for him.

He’s always been a hyperactive dog. Mila and him play constantly and in the summer we take tons of walks. It never calms him down so he can relax.

After having some personal experience with CBD and seeing a post on Facebook about CBD oil and treats for dogs, I was curious in trying it for Max. So, I reached out to Happy Dogs CBD. They sent me CBD goodies to Max and me in exchange for a review.

Although I got the items for free, this is my honest review that I’m happy to share with you.

First, what’s CBD? It’s the second most prevalent ingredient in cannabis. So, yeah it’s in marijuana, but its not the ingredient that gets you high.

CBD is great for physical, emotional, and mental health. It’s know for it’s healing qualities.

In the past, it’s helped me with my anxiety, depression, and just overall mood. There’s many different ways to take CBD, but before Happy Dogs CBD gummies, I had only used the oil.

There’s SO much information about the benefits of CBD on the internet that is readily available.

Happy Dogs CBD sent Max and me four of their products: dog treats, oil, pain cream, and gummies. We have tried each product and I can confidently say we love them.

Every time Max sees me pull out his CBD treats, he gets so excited. It’s definitely not like trying to get him to take medications. He seems to enjoy their taste and has taken the bag out of my hands a few times.

I only give him two of these treats when I have to leave for school or if I feel like he’s anxious.

He can also take the CBD oil. When I give him this, I put it over his canned food in the morning before I leave for work. I’ve followed the dosage on the back and it works for him.

Again, he eats his food like normal and doesn’t notice a taste with the oil.

Both CBD treatments have worked wonders for Max. He’s much more calm and during the day, he’s able to be okay with just his bones and music playing. It’s been so nice to have him not get so excited. He would always jump and scratch me or accidentally run MIla over. Now we can actually play with him and he settles down after a while.

The toughest thing about starting CBD is getting the dosage right. I found that giving him it every day is too much for him. So, I’ll either give him the treats OR the oil and space a day in between.

This is the best for Max. Obviously, every dog has their individual needs. If you try these CBD treats, you’ll have to do what works for your dog… and self!

I was happy to try Happy Dogs CBD for people! Humans can use the same oil dogs do.

All you need is to put the correct dosage under your tongue for forty-five seconds. Then swallow the rest.

They also sent CBD gummies, just for human consumption. I take two every other day, if I don’t use the oil.

Just like dogs, people need to find the dosage that works for them.

The first day I took them, I got really sleepy. I’m unsure if it was a mix of not feeling my normal anxiety or if I just took too high of a dose. Either way, I kept taking them and feel amazing.

Happy Dogs CBD also sent some of their pain cream. I used it on my neck and felt a difference quickly. Honestly, I’ve only used it twice, but the times I did use it, I could tell a big difference. I think it’s a great option for individuals who are looking for a new pain cream.

Over all, I’m so impressed with the quality of the CBD and products in general. Their customer service rocks and they just want to help your him have Happy Dogs and humans!

If you’re looking for a natural way to treat hyperactivity, anxiety, joint pain, and yours and your pets overall health, you should look in CBD oil.

Happy Dogs CBD is such a great company to interact and work with. They shipped their products fast and safe too.

All of their products are great quality and I’ll definitely purchase more in the near future.

You can use their discount code ‘buy2get1’ to buy two of their products and get one for free. They’re also currently running a sale.

This is a wonderful time to help your dog and you improve your health.

I promise you won’t regret it!

Let me know in the comments if you’ve ever tried CBD products and let me know what you think of Happy Dog’s products.

Happy Dog’s CBD contact information:

One Way to Trick Your Toddler Into Brushing Their Teeth.

If your child is anything like mine, they can’t stay still. Especially when they’re doing something as mundane as brushing their teeth.

I’ve finally found the trick to get Mila to brush her teeth and do it right.

All it took was Pizza and his friends.

Okay, I know everyone loves Pizza updates. You’d never imagine how central he is in our everyday life. This time, it was finally for my advantage though.

Mila has had issues with brushing her teeth since the beginning. I would have to hold her down to get them cleaned

I did different tricks like making her laugh, having her brush mine then me hers, and changing her tooth paste and brushes. For a few months, I even told her they’d fall out if we didn’t brush them. Some things worked… for a little while.

This time though, I’ve found the golden ticket

Since Mila has started dance class, she’s become this little performer. All eyes have to be on her and she loves when she gets to teach dance moves.

One morning, when it was time to brush her teeth, she did her usual refusal.

She was playing with Pizza and his friends and a light bulb went off. I asked her if Pizza knew how to brush his teeth. She said no and I asked her if she wanted to teach him.

Weirdly, she said yes.

For the extended weekend, she had to have an audience while brushing her teeth. I set them up in the morning and she did her lesson.

Now that it’s routine, she doesn’t give any complaints when I ask her to brush her teeth.

All it took was the power of teaching, Pizza, and a few toys.

Does your child have any issues with teeth brushing? What are some tricks you’d share that made the journey easier?

Toddler Activity: Thankful for You Lollipop Flowers

It’s National Random Act of Kindness Day! Although we try to do as many acts of kindness everyday, we wanted to share this today.

Mila loves her ‘kids’ and ‘girls.’ These kids consist of all her cousins and her girls are from dance class. She loves the time she spends with them.

When I asked who she wanted to share kindness with, it’s no wonder why she chose them.

We talked about why it’s nice and important to do nice things for other people. There was a mini brainstorming session about what we could do. Valentine’s Day definitely helped the matter!

Mila suggested flowers, so we compromised.

All you need to do to create these lollipop flowers are paper, scissors, and suckers! I used taped to secure the flowers too.

For creating the flowers, I just drew ones on the back of the paper and cut it out. To get the lollipop stick through, I pressed a hole in the middle with the scissors.

On the underneath of the flowers, I put, ‘I ♥ You! -Mila.’ Short and sweet!

We’ll be giving them out as soon as she sees her kids and girls. She loved how they turned out and wanted to hold them like a bouquet.

If we did a large scale random acts of kindness, I’d definitely add a quote to the flowers. These would also be adorable for a birthday party or class treat.

We’re so happy and excited to spread a little extra kindness in the world. This year, we hope we can do more random acts and bring joy to those who are least expecting it.

Let me know what you think about this kindness project in the comments below.

Toddler Activity: Mardi Gras Beads Process Art

Happy Fat Tuesday!

If you’re looking for a quick activity to do with your child today, this one goes perfectly when listening to some jazz music.

You probably have most of the supplies at home too. Here’s all you need:

  • Paint (purple, gold, green)
  • Canvas
  • Beads

Since everyone knows we love process art here, using beads is a fun way to create.

I chose traditional Mardi Gras colors for Mila to use and we had some random beads already here. There were two different sized beads she used too!

All you have to do is instruct your child to dip the beads in the paint and drop them on the canvas.

It can get a little messy, so put paper underneath.

I had to help Mila get paint on the beads. It’s a little tricky, but older kids shouldn’t have a problem with it. It’s also nice to make sure to leave one part of the necklace clean so it’s easy to grab.

I absolutely love how this painting turned out. It would be cute to add an outlined fleur-de-lis too!

Mila loved being introduced to jazz music too. She dipped the necklaces along with the beat! Next year I’ll have to find a beignet recipe!

If you decide to do this activity with your child, let me know how it goes in the comments!

For more Mardi Gras activities check out these blog posts:

One Pot Ground Beef and Zucchini Recipe

What’s better than a tasty meal? Not having a ton of dishes to clean up afterwards! This one pot dinner will be a family favorite and one you’ll love making.

Here’s what you’ll need;

  • One pound of hamburger
  • One medium sized zucchini
  • Small bell pepper (I used red)
  • One can of Hunt’s Diced Tomatoes with Basil, Garlic & Oregano
  • 1/4 of onion
  • One cup of rice
  • Two cups of beef broth
  • Spices (I used salt, pepper, onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, and oregano)
  • Half a block of cream cheese
  • Cheese

First, heat up your pan. While you’re waiting, cut your onion, pepper, and zucchini.

Once it’s heated up add the ground beef, onion, and pepper. I added some of the spice blend. When it’s browned, drain the oil.

Next, add the zucchini, tomatoes, rice, and beef broth. Don’t drain the tomatoes because the rice will soak up that juice too! Add the rest of your spice blend here.

Cover and stir every couple minutes.

Once the rice starts to soften, add in the cream cheese. Mix it until it blends throughout.

When the rice is done, take off heat and add in cheese. You can use any type of cheese. We used shredded colby jack!

Mila is also obsessed with eggs right now, so I put an over-medium egg over top of hers and and an easy-over egg on mine. I personally love the taste of egg yolk. It pulled the meal together.

Make sure to let me know in the comments if you tried this recipe!

To the Women Who Puts Everyone Else First:

I know how these days feel.

You try to share you love to everyone you hold close to your heart. No matter what’s going on, making sure they feel loved is most important.

There are nights you don’t sleep to make sure everything gets done for them.

When you need something like clothes or a new haircut, you make sure your kids or partner have them first.

Sometimes you spend hours listening to others to make sure they’re okay. You know your problems will work themselves out eventually.

Instead of a long hot bath or shower, you rush through yours or share them with your littles.

Your meals are cold because you make sure everyone else gets full first.

We put them first because we love them. We’re the glue the helps holds those we love together.

But…

You deserve the same love you give to others.

Never forget that you deserve a good nights sleep, a new hair cut and clothes, knowing your problems are important, a long shower or bath, and a hot meal.

That’s just touching the surface of all you deserve and need.

It’s hard to put yourself first or accept the love that we give out. When you do, don’t feel selfish. You are in need of those things too.

You cannot continue keeping everyone else afloat when you’re drowning.

Allow yourself that space. You’re worth it.

When you put yourself first sometimes, you give all those you love the opportunity to be around the best you.

More importantly, you get to give yourself that love that you pour into others.

You deserve all the things you want and more.

Love,

Another Woman Who Puts Others Before Herself

Red Velvet Cookie Recipe

If you need a last minute Valentine’s Day treat/present or are really craving something delicious, you’ll love these cookies.

They take about twenty minutes to make and everyone will want more. It’s easy too!

This recipe also reminds me of Jensen. I craved these throughout my pregnancy. They’re always fun to make and honor him too.

The best part of this recipe is there’s only FOUR ingredients:

  • Red Velvet Cake Box
  • Two Eggs
  • 1/3 Cup of Vegetable Oil
  • Powdered Sugar

First, preheat your over to 375.

Then mix the red velvet cake box, eggs, and oil together. It’ll get to a cookie dough consistency. When it does stop mixing.

Next, make the dough into little balls. I did one at a time and then coated them into powdered sugar. Without the powdered sugar, they’ll stick to a baking sheet. That makes it hard to pick them back up again.

Put them in the oven for ten minutes.

After you pull them out, you’ll notice they’ll fall. Don’t worry, they’re not supposed to stay risen. They still taste fluffy!

One little word of caution with the doughs stickiness… throw some flour or something on your hands.

Mila tried to help before I could cover her hands and…

She had fun helping roll little cookie balls, but it got messy quick!

This would definitely be a great and quick way to surprise your kids, partner, or whoever your celebrating Valentine’s Day with!

Let me know what you think of this recipe in the comments.

Toddler Activity: Icy Heart Melt

Two science activities in two days? Yep!

This ice vs. salt activity is a fun way to freeze time for you and keep your toddler busy. It challenges them to see what’s making the ice melt and how they can do it quicker.

Before doing this activity, you have to freeze ice cubes. I used a mini heart mold, but you can use anything. To get the colors, I used food coloring.

Here’s what we used to set up and do this activity:

All I told her before I let her experiment was to melt the ice. I told her salt and blowing on it would help.

I’m all for giving myself some time to clean or cook. Mila played with this set up for quite a while.

She gave me enough time to cook and clean up, which is a win for me.

After she was done, I let the liquid dry and brushed the salt off of it. With this you can hang it up, have your child make a picture with it, or incorporate them into a Valentine’s Day card.

We had a ton of fun doing Valentine’s Day activities this year. I can’t wait to see what we get into next!

As always, I hope you enjoy this little icy heart melt. If you experiment to, make sure to let me know how it went.