5 Disney Movies to Talk About Mental Health with Kids.

Mental health matters and talking about it at an early age is a great way to let kids know what’s going on in their head is important. Disney movies are a great way to talk about mental health with kids.

Just like every toddler household, Mila and I watch a lot of Disney. When we’re driving or talking at dinner, we talk about the message behind each movie.

No matter if it’s about grief, anxiety, or perseverance, Disney movies talk about it all.

Watching movies is also a fun way to practice self care. We usually watch a movie before bed to unwind. With any self care nights, there’s Disney movies playing too.

Disney movies and mental health just work.

Here are five of Mila’s favorite Disney movies with mental health messages I love.

1. Luca

Luca came out this past summer and Mila watched it repeatedly for days. The biggest message in this movie is “Silenzio Bruno.” She’s wearing that in the picture in the beginning of the post.

Luca seems to have a lot of anxiety in the movie. His friend, Alberto, helps him push through this anxiety by saying “Silenzio Bruno.”

The way I’ve explained it is it means for the little voice in your head to be quiet. You shouldn’t doubt yourself or think you’re not going to succeed. Silence those negative voices and conquer your goals.

Mila and I say this to each other now. We’ve talked about big emotions and feeling worried. Whenever Mila is scared I tell her this and she usually tries whatever.

The movie also talks about friendship, being yourself, and loss. It’s a great movie for those big topics, but it’s also really good too.

2. Frozen

I’m pretty sure Frozen is Mila’s favorite movie of all time. It’s one she can always watch and never get bored of.

Since we’ve watched it so many times, there’s a few themes that I talk about with Mila.

First, we talk about how people manage grief… of course in an age appropriate way. Elsa and Anna’s parents die early in the movie. Elsa has already shut herself off from the world (conceal, don’t feel) and Anna wanted to outwards process her grief.

We’ve talked about healthy actions to do when we feel sad and mention both of her favorite characters.

The second thing we talk about is her favorite song, “Let It Go.”

Anytime Mila is having big emotions at home, we sing “Let It Go.” Mostly because dancing and singing always makes her feel better, but I also love the words to it.

I don’t want Mila to ever feel held back by her emotions. If she can let them go and not let them hold her back, she can conquer the world.

3. Moana

Admittedly, I think Moana moves me more than it does Mila, but she loves the island life.

I love the part where Te Kā turns back to Te Fiti. It makes me cry every single time. For me, it shows how anger, grief, and disappointment can change a person. It gives them a tough exterior, but they’re always a person underneath it all.

Mila might not grasp all of that now, but we talk a lot about Moana and her Dad’s relationship.

Moana wants to leave the island and voyage, but her dad wants her to stay safe on the island. By the end of the movie, he lets her go, but it was a struggle.

With this, I tell Mila she can be anything she wants to be. I will never try to pressure her or hold her back.

Of course she tries to be funny and bring me her whole snack drawer to eat after these talks…

4. Onward

If you ever have a conversation about Mila and ask about Jensen, she will let you know that he’s her brother and that he died. It can come off as a little creepy, but I’ve always talked about Jensen and grief with her.

When we watched Onward, she understood that their dad died and he couldn’t ever fully come back. Even when his legs came back, he could never stay or be the person that the boys needed.

It, again, shows how Ian and Barley both handle their grief. There’s no right way to grieve, but it seems they both have grieved in healthy ways.

As she gets older, I’m also going to point out that grief is a journey. Ian and Barley literally take a road trip to help process their grief, but that’s what we do when we’re really grieving too. There’s bumps in the roads and roads you take that you shouldn’t. It’s all a part of grieving.

I hope Mila will continue loving this movie and learn more lessons the older she gets.

5. Inside Out

If you’re looking to talk about emotions, Inside Out is a perfect way to introduce kids to emotions personified.

We love Joy and Sadness. Their journey through the movie let’s us know it’s okay to feel however we need. You can’t always be happy or sad, there’s a good mix in it all.

The other journey in the movie is Riley’s. Riley and her parents have moved and it’s hard on her. Her story is perfect for talking to kids about big life changed and the emotions felt afterwards. Again, it shows that it’s okay to miss something and have those feelings attached. It’s also okay to let yourself make room for new memories and emotions as well.

Like I stated before, I just love how this movie gives each emotion a personality. It helps kids visualize their emotions and how they could handle them too.


This is just a short list of Disney movies that talk about mental health. There are so many more that we love and can have great talks about too.

Others include:

  • Tangled
  • The Princess and the Frog
  • Soul
  • Frozen 2
  • Raya

I hope that you enjoy this list and can talk about these things with your child too. It’s an easy way to bring those talks up and dig deeper in what your little is thinking about.

What movies would you have added to this list? Or what are some ways you talk about mental health with your child?

Self Care: Four Ingredient Pumpkin Face Mask.

September is Self-Care Month! Mila and I spent our first Sunday in September with a DIY Pumpkin Face Mask.

We love having spa nights and days at our house. It’s even more fun when we can make our own masks too. Since it’s almost fall and spooky season, I knew we had to incorporate pumpkins.

Pumpkin is SO good for your skin. It is full of vitamins, such as A, C, and E. There’s also antioxidants and beta-carotene packed in there as well. Obviously, I looked all that information up. All of that means that pumpkin helps reverse UV damage (perfect for after summer), improve skin texture, and increase collagen.

All things that make your skin happy!

The only four ingredients you need for this mask are…

  • 1/4 Cup of Pumpkin Puree (I used canned)
  • 2 Tablespoons of Brown Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon of Olive Oil
  • 7-10 Drops of Face Serum

To make the mask, just mix all of the ingredients together until it’s consistent. It didn’t take long to do at all.

Then, apply and leave the mask on for fifteen minutes.

Removal is easy. Just wash your face with water and pat your face dry. I actually used a washcloth to take it off of Mila’s face.

Before putting it on our faces, I left it on the counter to get to room temperature. I personally don’t like when masks are super cold on my face. We took a shower and did a hair mask and it felt nice on our skin.

I applied Mila’s mask with my finger and mine with a spoon. It worked way better with a spoon.

Mila loved seeing her face covered with the mask. She thought it looked silly, but didn’t touch her face for the whole fifteen minutes.

After taking the masks off, I could instantly tell a difference. Both of our faces felt so much softer. I can imagine doing pumpkin masks consistently would really help.

Maybe with all the pumpkin recipes and crafts planned, I’ll have extra laying around!

I’m actually so excited that September is Self Care Month. With Mila starting preschool and our routine changing once again, it’ll be nice to take the time this month to get back to us.

What type of DIY masks do you like making? If you have any suggestions, let me know in the comments.

Also, let me know what self care ideas you’re planning for this month!

Mother-Daughter Self Care Night Ideas.

There’s nothing more special than a mother daughter date night! Instead of going out, Mila and I stayed in and practiced self care.

Since this first week back to school has been hectic, staying in and relaxing felt right. We both needed the rest and the together time to recharge for the upcoming week. Plus, we got to just focus on what self care we needed.

To begin the night, I took a hot shower where I put on a hair mask (seriously the mask I linked does wonders!) and used sugar scrub.

I never have enough time to do these extra steps! Setting aside this time made my skin and hair feel so soft and new.

Mila, on the other hand, had a bubble bath beforehand. She spent her time doing her own makeup. I didn’t know this, but she definitely was feeling herself and all the glitter.

We kept it on until right before bed because she liked it. When you have a self care night, you have to feel like your best self.

I can’t blame her for wanting to be covered in glitter.

After my lotion dried, we put on our favorite jammies. Then, we got our self care essentials for the night:

Mila choose to read Unicorns Are Real! by Holly Hatam. I got to read a few pages of my fav The Great Gatsby.

As a busy mom, I don’t always get to read as much as I’d like. Just even being able to read a few pages felt so nice. It’s also amazing for Mila to see me reading and enjoying it! I hope so loves English and language as much as I do.

The book she picked out is adorable! She often asks me to read it to her before bed. Now she makes up the story when she looks at it herself.

Throughout watching movies and reading our books, we snacked on our cheese balls and jello.

Mila asked for water, without Mio. I’m so proud of her positive choices. I told her she could have anything to drink and that’s what she chose.

We ended the night taking selfies and I painted Mila’s nails. I love that we both have dark purple polish on now. Anytime we can match, I feel like we try to do it. Even when we stay in.

It wasn’t long after her nails dried until Mila fell asleep. We had wiped her makeup off and she was just relaxed.

I ended the night watching dance moms and maybe had a few more cheese balls too.

Our night was pretty perfect.

We love being together and doing the things we enjoy. I can’t express how much joy Mila brings me. Hopefully she’ll be able to see the importance of self care as she gets older.

We all deserve to love and cherish ourselves.

Have you ever had a self care night with just your or with your little? What was your favorite activity?

25 Self Care Activities for August.

Hello August!

I’m completely shocked August is here. Summer is flying by, but there’s always time to focus on self care.

As parents, we sometimes forget to take care of our mental and physical health. It’s hard to fit it all in. Here are twenty-five self care activities that you can do all August long.

They can even be fun if you have littles with you too!

1. Take a walk

2. Read a book

3. Do a paint by number

4. Journal

5. Bake a cake

6. Listen to a podcast

7. Binge a new series

8. Go swimming

9. Take a drive

10. Tend plants

11. Visit a market

12. Go kayaking

13. Call a friend

14. Go to lunch

15. Buy your favorite coffee

16. Look at the stars

17. Pick flowers

18. Dance

19. Volunteer

20. Go on a walk

21. Cuddle an animal

22. Put new sheets on your bed

23. Take a phone free day

24. Go fishing

25. Try something new

No matter what you decide to do this month, make a little time just for you.

You are so important.

If you feel selfish for taking you time… your kids will benefit from your self care too! A happy mom or dad leads to happy kids.

You and your happiness matters.

What self care activity do you plan on doing this month? Any that you’d add to the list? Let me know in the comments.

My Toddler Designed a Tattoo… and I Got It!

Yes! You read that right. My three-year-old drew my latest tattoo. I loved it so much, I actually went and got it.

Toddler turned tattoo artist.

Tattoos are such a fun way to express yourself.

I have some that have a ton of meaning, one I just randomly got, and others that just make me smile. Yeah, they’re lifelong commitments and I know the whole ‘when you’re old’ comments. But, I still like them and want more.

This latest one will always be one of my favorites. I think I say that about all of mine.

A few weeks ago, I shared how Mila signed off birthday cards to other people. She draws a little creepy person and then scribbles for words.

Well, I really loved her creepy people and decided I wanted one of them tattooed on me.

So… I did it.

Before I went, I showed Mila the person I was getting. She was so ecstatic I was getting something she drew on me.

We talked about it a couple days before and I even heard her tell a few people too.

This is a big deal for her.

I love that I have the way she first drew people and seen the world. It reminds me that she pays most attention to facial expressions, if I’m paying attention to her, and legs. Which makes a lot of sense if you put yourself in a toddler’s shoes.

The tattoo took maybe thirty minutes to get. It was simple and quick to do.

Liz from Crown and Anchor Tattoo Club always does a great job on my tattoos. She’s easy to work with and is usually down for whatever pops in my head.

I’m sure it was super easy to decipher a child’s drawing, but she honored it, line by line.

When Mila first saw me after my tattoo, she immediately wanted to see it. She reminded my family that she was the one that drew it and was so proud when she saw it on my leg.

As much as I love it now, I know she’ll always love it too.

In the future, I’d definitely be open to getting more of her artwork. We’ll see what she comes up with. I’m most definitely getting her handwriting through. That is so special to me.

Would you ever get one of your child’s drawings tattooed on you? Or do you think I’ve gone completely crazy!?

5 June Affirmations for Self Love.

With post school craziness, I’ve been lacking on setting aside time for self care. I knew for June that I needed to make self love affirmation cards to remind myself to take time for me.

Since I love painting, I did random doodles to be the backdrop for my affirmations.

I love that they can be as simple or complex as I want to make it.

For this month, I wanted to focus on how colors made me feel. It seems like I always am drawn to rainbows, so I’m not surprised that’s what I drew. All the other colors were straight from my emotions and I tried to get the words to match.

Here’s my June affirmations this month. I also shared my cross between watercolor and digital art. Please feel free to use and share them if you’d like!

I spread love wherever I go.

I choose to let go of past anger.

Just keep shining.

I will ride out this wave.

You are important too.

Affirmations are so important for me to do. I hang them up in my kitchen where I can see them. They don’t have to be big pieces of paper to make a huge impact.

These little reminders will help me remember to make time for myself this summer. Mothers need self care and self love. This is mine.

Even if it’s five minutes, make sure to take time for you.

You’re important. You deserve it.

What affirmations or quotes have been speaking to you lately? Let me know in the comments.

My Everlasting Flowers.

I always dreamed of Jensen picking flowers for me. We’d have a house filled with dandelion and wildflower jars.

Although I do have a house like that now, it’s not from Jensen. Mila brings as much love as she does flowers into our house. Our life is happy, but we will always be missing a piece.

For a long time, I’ve wondered how I could get the dream of flowers from Jensen. Then I got a random tattoo.

After that tattoo, I talked to the tattoo artist about Jensen and how I’d love a bouquet of forget-me-not flowers on me. I wanted to always carry them, just like how he always walks with me.

So, we scheduled another tattoo session.

In a couple hours, I have my flowers picked by my Jensen. Every time I see blue forget-me-nots, I think of him. Now when I look at my arm, I think of him and the countless amounts of flowers he’ll have for me.

It felt a little radical to get a tattoo on my forearm that can always be seen, but I love it.

He and these flowers are a part of our story.

Most of my tattoos are in remembrance of Jensen. I love knowing that even though he’s not physically with us, I can always see him in my body. No matter if it’s on my foot, wrist, or arm, I can always catch a glimpse of him.

By the way, Mila likes this tattoo way more than the one on my ankle. She loves counting them and telling me how blue is for her brother.

What’s your favorite tattoo that you have? Or if you don’t have one, what would you get if you did?

Making Over Motherhood: My Battle with Maternal Mental Health

With the Mother’s Day soon, everyone is celebrating motherhood. Yet, there is a side of motherhood not a lot of people talk about. It’s the maternal mental health challenges that 1 in 5 women face each year in the U.S. This statistic is why Maternal Mental Health Week is so important to recognize.

Mothers all over the U.S. are sharing their stories of maternal mental health and making over motherhood.

In the picture of Mila and I, you might see me as a mother who is comforting her child. We’re all dressed up for pictures and beautifully done. The things that you can’t see are what makes motherhood so challenging. You don’t see my son who should be five and helping Mila take pictures. There’s an endless amount of tears that I’ve shed to get to this point. You’d never understand the turmoil and challenges it took to get to this one moment.

No one can outwardly see mental health issues. As a mother, we instinctually put our children’s needs before ours. Our mental health can slip and slide away.

I am the 1 in 5 who have faced maternal mental health disorders.

Throughout my time on this blog, I haven’t been shy about talking about my anxiety, depression, and PTSD that I faced after Jensen’s birth. What I didn’t expect was postpartum depression after having Mila.

How could I not be happy and joyous after having a living child? I didn’t have to plan a funeral or never see her again. All the things I had wished for after Jensen’s birth was happening with her. She would be growing and learning. It felt so unnatural to not be in love with the time after she was born.

But, I wasn’t. I loved her and wanted all the best things for her, but I couldn’t be happy.

I think I cried more than I smiled that first year. It was hard to even get on a schedule or do certain things. If I wasn’t sad, I had horrible anxiety.

There were constant thoughts of her dying and all the scenarios that could play out. I honestly felt crazy. It didn’t feel like anyone else had these thoughts with their newborn. It was isolating, just like I felt after Jensen’s birth.

Except, after I had Jensen, I gained a community that helped and uplifted me as much as they could.

With Mila, I felt completely alone.

Now that she’s three and Jensen would be five, I’ve lived with anxiety and depression for quite a while. I’ve talked to my new therapist for a year and she’s been a big help with my mental health. It makes me wish I would have gotten help sooner.

We all live in a world where social media rules all. People can project to you happy faces and times, but there’s a side to a people’s lives we don’t see. Not talking about maternal mental health and the challenges of motherhood can be especially damaging to new moms. They might think their emotions to how they’re handling motherhood is wrong, but it’s not.

As a mother who has lived through their child die and then dealt with intense mental health issues after their living child, I’m here to tell all mothers, they’re not alone.

It’s time to make over motherhood. That doesn’t mean putting our best foot forward on social media or how we present ourself to the world. It means showing the struggle and letting others know there is help out there.

Please know you’re not alone in your maternal mental health struggles. Reach out for help if you need it. You deserve the same love and care you give your child.

I promise, you’re worth it.

Here’s some information about Maternal Mental Health Week. If you can, share some information to help another mom out. If you’re feeling brave, you can share your story too.

You are never alone.

Resources:

The One Activity to Help Anyone Write Poetry.

It’s the last “Self Care Sunday” of April and National Poetry Month.

Honestly, the month has went fairly quick. I think with how busy we were, it helped with my grief and anxiety. Keeping myself busy with school, writing, and poetry has given me the space I needed. Now that I’ve made it to the end of April and my college classes (!), I can relax just a little bit.

To celebrate the occasions, I wanted to share one fun and interesting way that anyone can create poetry. Yes, ANYONE.

One of the hardest parts with writing poetry is finding inspiration.

How does someone narrow down all the things that inspire them? Then pick out the words to explain it? It’s actually a pretty daunting task if you really think about it.

Yet, there’s something most everyone can connect with… music!

No matter what type of music a person listens to, there are usually lyrics and meaning behind them. I think everyone connects to songs differently, even the same ones. Song lyrics are just long poems, so one way to create your own poetry easy it to pull from what you’re familiar with.

How to create your own poem with song lyrics.

This is simple. All you have to do is look at lyrics from your favorite songs and pull different lines form it. You could do one or two songs and just pick the lyrics that speak to you.

I’ll show you an example.

One song that I love is “More Than a Feeling” by Boston. It’s catchy and reminds me of song you can drive around with your windows down in the summer. When I looked into the lyrics, I found different lines to construe the song to make it have more of a connection to me.

Here’s the pretty version of the poem I came up with. If you pull up lyrics from “More Than a Feeling,” you can instantly tell where I pulled from.

Now my poem might not give off the vibe of driving around with the windows down like the song did. But, it’s not supposed to do that.

When I wrote this poem, I thought about my motherhood. Losing Jensen and how it felt like he slipped away from me. Then having Mila and wanting to hold on to her. It sort of reminds me of how grief creeps up on a person and takes them away for a little bit.

Okay, let’s do another one.

The second song I chose is “Thnks fr th Mmrs” by Fall Out Boy.

All I did was pull different lines from the song to make it into my own poem. It’s really as simple as that.

No matter what feeling you get from a song, you can put your own spin on it through a poem. It’s also a nice way to start writing poetry. There are people that don’t think they’re good at writing, but with this activity, you already have the words provided for you. All you have to do is put them in the order you want.

There’s not right or wrong ways to write poetry, but writing it can be a great way to express yourself.

I have a few more poems that I’m going to share in the next few days about motherhood, of course with Mother’s Day coming up. They’re vulnerable to share, but I love creating and getting feedback on them too. It’s such a great self care activity too!

If you happen to try this poetry writing activity, I’d love for you to share your poems in the comments or just thoughts on it in general.

Remember, YOU CAN DO IT!

Self Care: Keep Growing

I can’t explain how important self care is at least once a week.

By the end of the week, I usually can feel my body and mind aching for a little me time. Just a few moments of not being a mom or any of my roles. Five minutes of just being me.

I was able to write another poem and knew I needed to share it here.

Keep growing…

even when things pull you
apart,
it’s just the time to show heart.

you can do all hard
things,
no matter what life brings.

just keep growing.

Throughout life, there’s always times where it feels constant. You might feel like different responsibilities are ripping you apart. Before letting it tear you down, center yourself. Realize how powerful you are. All you have to do is keep growing and going.

After filling out my planner this week, my thoughts were running; which isn’t the goal for that activity. It was nice to be able to take a few minutes and just paint.

I love plants. They remind me we can grow through any conditions, but when we try to give them what they need, they thrive. Humans aren’t too different from plants in that aspect. I see my plants that are slow growing right now, even during spring. They remind me of myself and getting through these last two weeks of school.

Soon, I’ll be thriving. I need to just keep growing.

How have you practiced self care this week?