Thursday, October 30, 2014

Happy Halloween 2014!


       Happy Halloween and Happy Samhain to our Pagan friends. We are really excited this year. Since Xavier is two and a half now it is the first time he understands a little bit about Halloween. All month we have been playing with ghosts, bats, spiders and learning about Halloween. We have talked about the costumes and trick-o-treating. I cannot wait to spend the day watching his first wonderment of Halloween. How amazing it is to see the magic in their eyes for the first time.

       We are having a fun filled day of pumpkin painting and carving, trick-o-treating and of course our night time celebration of Samhain, which Xavier does not get to spend as much time doing yet, as he does not make it past 9pm. There is nothing better than cuddling around a fire with jack-o-lanterns, eating candy, sipping cider and laughing with the ones you love.

I hope you all have a wonderfully fun and safe Halloween.
For our Pagan friends Happy Samhain, may the new year bring you all your heart's content.

Enjoy some photos of the last couple years. Check back on Monday for pictures from this year!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Crockpot Ham and Scalloped Potatoes


      With the busy days, holidays, and cold nights approaching us quickly I decided it was time to break out the crock pot. I barely use it when it is hot outside as I find it much more fun to grill, but I do love crock pots especially in the winter. Nothing is better than coming home to a warm meal that you barely have to cook or clean up.
          Although this may not be the healthiest meal, I always tell myself the more homemade it is the better. Also, try to buy hormone free, grass fed meats as well as organic vegetables. You can always make this meal as healthy or unhealthy as you would like. They way I make it is for convenience and taste. I hope you like it!

Crockpot Ham and Scalloped Potatoes
- made in 4.5 quart crockpot
- serves 4-6

- 6 serving slices of ham sliced 1/4" thick cut up (I usually buy the giant ham steaks for this as they are cheap and easy to cut up plus they are already smoked and taste great in the crockpot all day)
 - 6-8 medium potatoes, peeled and thinly sliced like circles
- 1 cup of chopped onion
- salt and pepper to taste
- 2 cups grated cheddar cheese
-  1 can (10 1/2 oz.) cream of celery soup
- Paprika to taste

Put half of the ham, potatoes and onions in crockpot. Sprinkle with salt and pepper to taste and cover with only half of the cheese.

Repeat the layer again.

 Spread the undiluted soup evenly over the top so air does not reach the potatoes. Sprinkle top layer with Paprika.

Cover and cook on low for 8 hours or high for 4 hours until potatoes are tender.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Sometimes Time Stops

    We were rushing around getting ready to go out to a friend's house for a party. A fun party with lots of kids and fun for both adults and toddlers. We were excited for Xavier to go. Of course, the day of the party Xavier decided to sleep in extra late on his nap. I had to wake him up so we could go. I walked into his room and saw this...

My heart just stopped and for that moment I looked at the gorgeous sun streaming through his curtains and his sweet little face sound asleep in bed. I hated to wake him, but knew he would be glad of all the fun he will have.
         Of course, since I had to wake him anyway, I grabbed Nick and made him see our precious angel, quietly beautiful. Then, I snapped a bunch of pictures of him. Funny thing is, he finally woke up and smiled and got right up and dressed without a problem. Some days are just magical and it really feels like we are on a stopped world at least for a little while.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Pumpkin Patch Fun


 This year we decided to take the traditional approach and went to the same farm and pumpkin patch we went to last year. We went to Mike's Farm and Restaurant.

            It was so much fun to take Xavier now that he is talking and walking. We went on a hayride out to the pumpkin patch and we each picked a pumpkin. I was so proud of him, he actually went around and looked for a pumpkin for a while and finally ended up picking a gorgeous little one that he was able to hold and carry.

           He loves the pumpkins. We have not carved them yet, will probably do that this week. However, every time Xavier sees the pumpkins on the porch he gets so excited and loves to look  at them. He is really grasping this Halloween idea really well, we cannot wait to celebrate this weekend!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Sponsored Review: Huggies Target Snug & Dry Diapers and Natural Care Wipes

I participated in an Influencer Activation on behalf of Mom Central for Huggies and Target. I received product samples to facilitate my review as well as a promotional item to thank me for my participation.

  Parents may go back and forth on what is needed and not needed for a baby, but what we all need to figure out is the best diapers and wipes that work for us. For some it is cloth, others disposable and of course there are always those parents who do a combination of both.
     Xavier is now two and a half and still in diapers. We have never really been for specific brand of diapers. The only ones we have decided were not for us were the cloth diapers. That still left us deciding on a plethora of different diapers to decipher on. Since Xavier was born until now we have switched diapers a number of times. We had one type when he was a newborn that seemed to fit him very well and hold a lot of waste. However, when Xavier started crawling and walking we needed a different type of diaper one that would move with him and give him the flexibility to explore, crawl, walk and run without a fear that the diaper would not stay on or that it was hindering his movement in some way.
       Now that Xavier is two, a diaper for toddlers has to not only be able to move with them, it must be very flexible material for all the crazy antics toddlers are forever doing. A toddler diaper must have a good leak system and be able to hold a large amount of waste. Toddlers are much bigger than a baby and they produce much more.

      Huggies Snug and Dry diapers have a Surefit design for up to 12 hours of leakage protection. They also have a flexible waistband that stays with your child through all their twists, turns, runs and jumps.

      After giving Huggies Snug and Dry Diapers a good try, they have turned this mom into a Huggies fan. Lately, it has been very hard finding a diaper to keep up with Xavier. They typically fill too quickly and sag right off of him while he is running around. During the night we had to change his diaper at least once so it would not leak.

          I was very impressed by the Huggies Snug and Dry Diapers. The Surefit design was exactly what was needed in his diapers. It is extremely flexible and even easily adjustable to fit any shape of baby or toddler. The diaper holds on very well through all the moving Xavier does and it even lasts all night long! What I especially like is how dry Xavier’s skin is and how dry the diaper actually is even with a ton of urine in it. Xavier has very sensitive skin and he was not bothered at all with the elastic waistband portion or on his bottom. They are a great price and you simply cannot beat the protection.  

      We were also fortunate to be able to try the new Huggies Natural Care Wipes. These wipes have triple clean layers that are thick enough to handle any mess with a texture that is still soft and sensitive enough for baby’s skin. Huggies Natural Care Wipes come in a variety of containers such as tubs to match any room, refill packs to stock up on, convenient soft packs, stylish on-the-go containers, or pop-up tubs so that you can always have the right wipe for baby in the container that fits your needs.

       I have not found many wipes that are as strong as the Huggies Natural Care Wipes. I easily found myself using even less wipes on Xavier than usual as these are so thick and quilted they pick up any mess. I also tried them out cleaning. I scrubbed pretty hard for a wipe and they hardly ever ripped. They also clean amazingly on many surfaces.  Of course the most important was that they did not bother Xavier’s sensitive skin in the least. I love these wipes and with the plethora of ways to stock up on them I’m pretty sure we will have no problem keeping these wipes around our house. Next Generation Stay At Home Mom gives Huggies Snug & Dry Diapers as well as Huggies Natural Care Wipes 5 stars!

       Target is now launching a new subscription program for automatic shipments of diapers, wipes, formula and other household essentials. Be sure to never run out of baby essentials that you need by having them conveniently delivered to your door every month!

If you would like to purchase some Huggies Snug and Dry Diapers or Huggies Natural Care Wipes right now Target is offering a coupon for .50 cents off a box of wipes or $1.00 off a box of diapers. You can access the coupon by clicking the link below to print it!
 Be sure to sign up for the Target subscription program to have them delivered right to your door!

Find out more about Huggies and Target by visiting these websites and social media sites
Huggies Website:
Huggies Twitter:@Huggies
Target Subscription Website:
 CLICK HERE for Huggies Target Coupon:

#MC, #Sponsored,

Monday, October 20, 2014



 Since the slowly approaching holiday of Halloween, we have been cautiously trying to "scare" or more likely "surprise" our toddler as much as possible. We are excited to take him trick or treating. He even has been practicing knocking on our doors with his bag and saying "trick treat" and "thank you". BEWARE if you have M&M's he loves those!
     We have been putting masks on ourselves and him. Running around and saying "boo!". Trying to explain what a "ghost" is to a two year old has definitely been challenging. However, it is a huge holiday that we love so we are having fun surprising at every turn. Luckily, Xavier has been very receptive to Halloween and surprises and even enjoys them.
     With the world of surprises going on in our home we took it outside the house this past weekend and even drove two hours to surprise Xavier's Aunt and cousin on his birthday! Xavier seemed just as excited of the surprise as they were.
      There is always lots of fun and love in surprises. Try to surprise someone you love this week, you may be surprised how much you may make their day!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Friday Faves Oldies But Goodies XII

Our little garden gnome last year.

I notice that many of you have children at different ages, or are even grandparents caring for children of all different ages. Plus, you may not have read some of my previous posts. Please note most of my posts are in the above tabs of About This Blog (basically our story as a family), The Mom Area (inspirational and informative tips and tricks),Party ThemesRecipes (from appetizers to baby food, check out all my yummies), Reviews (we review everything from places, technology, beauty, fashion, and of course baby and toddler items), Sponsor Information (if you are considering being a sponsor of Next Generation Stay At Home Mom) and Contact (if you want to shoot me an email for whatever reason, all are welcome, so are comments on the blog and social media). You can find other posts by searching or looking through the months and years. However, I thought it would be much easier for you to highlight stories and items every Friday so here you go! I hope you enjoy and all have a great weekend!

Friday Faves Oldies But Goodies XII

Get your strolling on
Graco LiteRider Stroller

Send a gift for no reason at all
The Bouqs

Enjoy a hot bowl of
Chili Con Carne With Tomatoes

Bring a different dish to the party such as this
Cheesy Squash Bake

Be inspired by
Saying Grace

Laugh about surviving a 
Power Outage With A Toddler

Wishing you all a wonderful weekend full of love, laughter and fun!

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Review: Insta Natural Stretch Mark and Scar Cream

 I wrote this post while participating in a campaign by Tomoson and received a gift and or payment to thank me for my time. All views and opinions with regard to the products or company itself are my own and were not influenced nor reviewed by the company prior to posting. I am disclosing this according to the FTC guidelines.

      I was contacted by Insta Natural to try out some of their natural beauty products. Once I saw what they offered I jumped at the chance to try out their Insta Natural Stretch Mark and Scar Cream
           As far as a daily moisturizer I loved this. It is very lightweight and comes in a HUGE bottle. I like that it is all natural and leaves my skin naturally soft and not greasy. Also a little goes a long way. It is very non-irritating to my sensitive and dry skin. It also lasts for a long time I could feel my skin soft over six hours after application. I only used it for a couple of weeks so far, but as far as my stretch mark scars, as well as acne and bruising/surgery scars I saw a great reduction especially in their color. This definitely makes them blend in really well.
           Insta Natural's Stretch Mark and Scar Cream can be used as a preventative as well. I was not able to test it that way, but I liked the non-greasy, no fragrance as what I used when I was pregnant did not smell very good and was very oily. This was perfect and even dispenses in small amounts.
                Insta Natural strive to have their customers 100% satisfied. Their logo is actually "we truly care about you". The majority of the ingredients are oils, vitamins and organic herb blends. It is good for two years in the bottle, they do not test on animals and they even offer a 100% money back guarantee if you are not satisfied with the product. Insta Natural's Stretch Mark and Scar Cream is an effective treatment to minimize the appearance of current marks, while also preventing the forming of new ones. It heavily moisturizes the affected areas and enhances the elasticity of the skin. The key ingredients for Insta Natural's Stretch Mark and Scar Cream are Vitamin C, Cocoa Butter, Rosehip Oil, Mango Butter, Grape Seed Oil and Evening Primrose Oil.
   I loved Insta Natural's Stretch Mark and Scar Cream and will continue using it in the future.  Next Generation Stay At Home Mom gives InstaNatural's Stretch Mark and Scar Cream 5 Stars!

 This is a great deal a 5 fl. oz container for only $23.95!

Purchase InstaNatural Stretch Mark and Scar Cream on Amazon for $23.95 also check out their other products on their website.


I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

What's That? Oh, It's Commercialism.


      It's amazing that as human beings we manage to take something that is completely 100% natural and find a ton of expensive, unnecessary items that we convince ourselves we need for it. When women are pregnant, the mailing lists, email lists and coupon lists start. You are shown hundreds of items you need to register for in order to get the baby.
       Once the baby is born more items are needed. You keep being bombarded with kid stuff forever. It did seem to simmer down for a while after Xavier turned two. For a little while we did not get as many mailers, coupons or emails. For a little while the commercialism of having to buy things for our child seemed to stop.
       Then, I saw commercialism pop up again in a spot I had not thought of it appearing in quite so early. Commercialism showed up in my child. He saw a certain snack cup that is frequently advertised on his channel of television that he watches. We were in the store, he saw it on the shelf said "OH snack cup" (only he said the exact advertised name) grabbed it and asked if he could put it into the cart. I said "no" and to "put it back", but it amazed me that at two he is already influenced so much by advertising.
       Sure, you have to advertise and perhaps it's because his channel only has two commercials a show and they are always the same commercial. Perhaps it was because it was on a shelf exactly Xavier's eye level and prominently displayed. However, it did not stop me from realizing how easily everyone young and old can get sucked into buying things they see just because they think they "need" it.
        So far it has not been a real problem with Xavier. He will ask to put something in the cart and if we say "no put it back" he does with out even complaining. I hope that he always remembers that no matter how full that cart is, it is not what matters most.

Monday, October 13, 2014



    I would like to introduce you to our new favorite friend, Charlotte. No, Charlotte is NOT real, she is plastic. The other day Nick and I decided to take Xavier to get his hair cut and run some errands afterwards. I told this to Xavier and he was excited.He usually likes to get his hair cut. It's about the only time he gets lollipops so he loves it. However, when we pulled up and parked the car he started crying and did not want to get his hair cut. Of course, we could have wrestled with him and forced him to go, but frankly this was the start of a long day of errands for us so having him in a good mood was definitely our benefit. So I told him if he got his hair cut he could pick out a toy at the toy store next door afterwards.
          Please Note: The "toy store" next door is The Dollar Tree, but that is not to say that they do not have cool toys. Many cars, dinosaurs and coloring books are from The Dollar Tree so that is why I offered the toy.

      He sat perfectly still and got a great haircut and we walked over to the toy store and Xavier was in the toy aisle for a long time. He carefully looked over the cars, the dinosaurs, the books, and he finally settled with something in the large plastic animal collection. He looked like he was deciding between a lion and an elephant when suddenly he dropped them both and grabbed this large plastic brown thing that turned out to be a spider the size of my hand. I had no idea why he picked the spider but my two year old had taken long enough to decide I was not going to argue. So we paid for it and he carried it out.

        When we were in the car. He was hugging it and playing with it. I was surprised as to how much he really loved the spider. I asked him what the name of his spider was, Xavier answered "Charlotte", then hugged "Charlotte". Nick and I looked at each other. He had just watched Charlotte's web the other day. I thought it was adorable that he liked the movie so much that he even wanted a "Charlotte" of his own.

       Needless to say "Charlotte" has been around a lot lately. You are liable to find her on the floor anywhere, on the couch or in bed. Sometimes even the bathroom. However, just when I get annoyed at startling myself over a giant plastic spider, I see him reading to her, feeding her and putting her down for a "nap". How amazing little sponges children are. I am so glad my son already knows how amazing spiders are and to respect all living creatures.

I hope you all have a great start to your week!


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