Mum & Baby Holiday Gift Ideas

**See my fitness & health related gift idea post HERE!

MY WORKOUTS

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Obviously my Pregnancy Workout Guide, Pregnancy & Postpartum Workout Subscription, and “Regular” Workout Subscription are something I’d recommend for pregnant and postpartum mamas. They are workouts that I 100% stand behind, and were put together from my education as a certified personal trainer, certified women’s fitness specialist, and certified pregnancy fitness, and certified pre/postnatal exercise specialist. They are not only SAFE workouts for pregnancy and postpartum, but they are designed to also be EFFECTIVE, and strengthen the muscles that need strengthening to help prevent abdominal separation, support your pelvic floor, and help your body prepare for and heal after delivery.

LOOPY CASE

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I’ve had my Loopy Case since February, and I SWEAR by it! I hardly ever drop my phone anymore, and the few times I have (or when Piper has), it’s been totally protected. The loop at the back stops it from slipping out of my hand, and I loop it around my finger all the time when I have my hands full of bags & babies. It’s SO handy! Every mama needs one. I don’t have a code, but I follow someone who does! Use “SWENSON10” for 10% off

FAWN DESIGN

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I loooove my Fawn Design diaper bag! It has lots of pockets, easy to clean messes, and I like that it doesn’t look so diaper bag-y, if you know what I mean.

FRESHLY PICKED

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I also have a Freshly Picked diaper bag, and love it just as much! I’d recommend either one, honestly! This one is a big bigger, so it’s great for days when I’m out for longer periods of time. If you sign up for their Fringe membership, you get it for 20% off! You pay $10 a month for the membership, but it just adds that $10 to you account to use on their site. It rolls over, so if you don’t use it that month, the next month you’ll have $20 if you account. Everything is 20% off and free shipping that way too!

FACE MASK

I love small little gifts like this clay face mask, because it’s something for a mum to use for a little self care!

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I used a Solly Wrap with both babies, and it was the BEST! Sometimes it was the only way I could get them to sleep! I loved having them so close to me, but also being able to get things done with both hands!

PROMPTLY JOURNALS

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I’ve shared Promptly Journals a few times on my Instagram stories, but I have 2 of their journals for Piper and Jack, and it makes keeping track of their milestones, memories, and things I don’t want to forget SO easy. They prompt you with questions at each age, so you can remember it all. I felt overwhelmed trying to figure out a way to keep track of their lives, and have loved using these journals!

PLAY KITCHEN

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Play kitchens are Piper’s favourite things to play with at other people’s homes, so I got her one for Christmas (still have to set it up though…sos). She’s going to love it! I got in on Amazon for $99, but it’s on sale for $79.99 right now!

VELCRO FOOD

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My mum bought Piper something similar to this last year for Christmas, and she LOVES it. It keeps her busy forever, and she still asks to play with them all the time.

POP UP PIRATE

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I used to play Pop-Up Pirate all the time as a kid, and bought the game for Piper for Christmas. I ended up getting it out and letting them play with it because I couldn’t wait haha. We play with it EVERYDAY now. It’s such an easy, entertaining game for little kids.

BABY BASKETBALL

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Jack looooves balls, so I got him this little basketball net for his birthday. It’s supposed to go in the bath, but I just put it on the Fridge, and he puts the ball in and out of the hoop alllll day long. It was the cheapest present I bought him, and is definitely his favourite!

BOOKS

Both of my kids love reading, and it’s the only time I can get them to sit still these days. These are some of their favourites:

Each Peach Pear Plum

The Very Hungry Caterpillar

Where’s Spot

The Pout-Pout Fish

The Napping House

First 100 Words

Daily Life

The kids and I moved into our own place last week, and have been busy getting settled! I love it, and Piper keeps saying, “I love our cozy house, mama”, so I think we’re all fans! Most of our furniture still hasn’t arrived, so it’s pretty bare still haha, but it’s suuuuper nice being in our own space again, and having all of our own things.

I haven’t done a ‘daily life’ post in a while, and I wanted to throw one up of our day and how it’s structured with entertaining the kids, and fitting in work right now.

MORNING

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Jack used to sleep in a little longer than Piper, but now they’re sharing a room they tend to wake up at the same time (read: Piper yells at Jack to wake up as soon as she opens her eyes). I nurse Jack, and they usually play with toys for a little while I get Piper’s milk and get their breakfast ready.

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Today’s breakfast was banana, raspberries, yogurt and toast for them, and wheat sourdough, mashed avocado, arugula, poached egg, cherry tomatoes, and micro greens for me. I usually make my breakfast when they’re eating theirs otherwise it gets tooooo crazy.

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Depending on how messy breakfast is, I do baths after breakfast or after dinner. This was definitely a morning bath type of day haha. Eek. Luckily both of them LOOOOVE baths and could stay in there all day, so I cleaned their bathroom while played and drenched me with water.

I got them ready for the day, we read a couple of books, and then Jack went down for his morning nap (he goes back down about 1 1/2 to 2 hours after he wakes up).

Piper helped me unload the dishwasher, clean up after breakfast, clean the other bathroom, and we started playing with blocks when Jack woke up after 45 minutes. Loved that.

AFTERNOON

We hit up Ikea to some things for the house, and came back for lunch. They had Annie’s Mac & Cheese, corn, steamed green beans, and cucumbers, and then both went down for their afternoon nap.

I cleaned up after their lunch, and got in a workout - a 3 mile run and THIS glute circuit. I followed it up with a scoop of IdealRaw chocolate peanut butter protein, a veggie wrap posted HERE. **You can use ‘SWOLE’ for 10% off any IdealRaw products!

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Nap time is when I try to get the bulk of my work stuff done. I want to do a full post one day of what it all entails, but yesterday I answered time-sensitive emails, finished some content work I am doing for a company, and Jack woke up again before I could get to anything else.

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I nursed him, and we read books, and played until Piper woke up. We took the scooters and tricycle outside and walked around the neigbourhood, then played at the park (there’s one in our complex which is awesome).

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EVENING

We came back inside, and I started making turkey chili (using THIS recipe). I didn’t add in as much of the spices so it would be too hot for the kids, and added plain greek yogurt to cool it down for them. This is the hardest time of the day (4-6pm), because Jack only wants to be held, and Piper wants all of my attention too. I make as much of dinner as I can while holding Jack, and distract him with snacks the rest of the time haha. I don’t normally like Piper watching shows, but every now and then I let her watch a little one while I make dinner for us.

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After we eat, I get them ready for bed, read books, and we clean up their toys. Jack goes down first, and Piper drinks her milk and we read/sing songs. She goes down and then I clean up after dinner, do more work, and take a hot bath while I watch Netflix and have some JoJo’s dark chocolate (use SWOLE10 for 10% off).

Haha…no wonder I'm so exhausted at the end of the day. These kids keep me busy, but I love it.

Friday Favourites

Except on Monday. It’s all good. I have my life together, I swear…

Here are some of my favourite things that I find helpful in regards to being a mum, and trying to live a healthy lifestyle! Happy Monday!!

TRUE LEMON + COLLAGEN PEPTIDES

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I have been drinking this mix regularly since the beginning of the summer, so I have no clue why I’m only posting about it now. True Lemon is a natural mix that I like drinking during the afternoon to mix up plain water. I add in Collagen For Her collagen peptides (I believe “GOODFORTHESWOLE” gets you 10% off) because they are unflavoured and it’s just an easy way to sneak in collagen.

MENTAL HEALTH

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I’ve always known mental health is important, but going through a divorce has given me a whole new appreciation for it, and I see the direct impact it has on physical and just overall health. IT IS SO IMPORTANT. I recently started following Alexa Allred (@allredyalexa) on Instagram. She is a Mental Health Therapist, and shares helpful tips, advice, and mental health education on her page. Even just seeing her posts and stories pop up are a nice reminder every day to check in and make sure my mental health is taken care of too!

SHARK MOP

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When I went to Washington D.C. to visit a friend a couple of months ago, she was raaaving about her new Shark mop. You know you’re old when you get so excited about cleaning supplies haha. I ordered one on Amazon, and it really is the best! Jack and Piper are the messiest eaters known to mankind, so meal times look like a giant food fight took place. It’s so easy to just plug this mop in, and quickly sanitize the floors. It uses steam which I love because Jack’s crawls around the floors, and having chemicals all over the place stress me out. You just add water, and the steam kills 99.9% of germs and bacteria. I could go on and on, but just go and read the reviews. I’m a fan!

WORKOUT SUBSCRIPTION

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Obviously, I’m going to bring up my newest workout subscription! This one is designed for anyone wanting to workout effectively from home! I don’t get to workout at the gym very often, so most of my workouts happen from home. I know a lot of women/mothers can’t get to the gym either, so I hope this helps! For more information, go HERE!

NURSING SPORTS BRA

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Senita Athletics just released another style of nursing sports bras. Since starting Good For The Swole, I’ve had the chance to try nursing sports bras from different companies. Senita Athletics are hands down my FAAAAVOURITE nursing sports bras. They are comfortable, supportive, and the padding inside doesn’t bunch up when you pull it down to nurse (you know what I mean????). I have a smaller chest, so both styles of nursing sports bras work great for me, and I love them both. Their newest one has more coverage, and offers more support. If you have a larger chest, I’d opt for this one, but both are AWESOME!!

9 Months Of Jack

Jack will be 10 months old in a week, but better late than never I guess!

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He is the SWEETEST little guy. I think all babies have a sweetness, but he has this special, calming presence about him. He’s been such a gift to me.

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He used to be a HARD, HARD baby (which was probably because he had open sores all over his body thanks to eczema), but he’s really mellowed out and is generally a chill little chap. He only really cries when I leave the room. We’ve entered the separation anxiety stage, and it’s a hoot!

He is ALL over the place, and climbs onto everything. He pulls himself up and walks around all the furniture, and climbs on top of anything that’s low enough to get his little leg up on. He’s still a speedy crawler, and has started letting go of furniture and trying to stand up by himself (he’s lasts .01 seconds haha). It’s crazy to think that Piper was already walking at this age!

With that, changing his diaper/getting is ready is the most frustrating job in the world. He’s so wiggly and contorts his body is the most bizarre shapes to get away.

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He hasn’t had any more teeth come through this month, so he still has 8. He bites me at least a couple of times a day when we’re nursing, and it’s SO painful. We’re still going strong with breastfeeding though, and I don’t have plans to stop anytime soon. I’ll wean whenever both of us are ready.

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He squeals and kicks his legs with excitement when I put him down for naps, and goes right off to sleep. He has been waking up at 8am recently, and then goes down for his first nap around 9:30am. He sleeps for 1-2 hours, and then goes back down for another nap (timed for the same time as Pipes) around 2:00pm. He sleeps for another 1 1/2 -2 hours, and goes down for the night at 7pm. His sleeping habits have been a struggle up until this point, but we’re finally in a good routine again and him sleeping through the night is the BEST THING EVER.

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He’s a tiny bub and only in the 7th percentile for weight He’s following the growth curve perfectly though, and his pediatrician isn’t concerned at all, he’s just little for his age. He eats 500x more than Piper, so I have no idea where he puts it all. He’s a great eater, and because he has a lot of teeth, he’s eating pretty much any solid food. He likes to only feed himself though which means we have lots of bath times around here.

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He lights up and kicks his legs when he sees Piper after his naps, and tries to do whatever she’s doing. I’m still working with her on being soft and sharing (“careful” is the most used word around here), but they have such a special bond and I swear I could cry every time they just look at each other. He’s always by her side and tries to copy everything she does.

Not their best picture haha, but this is their favourite thing to do lately. They’re the best duo.

Not their best picture haha, but this is their favourite thing to do lately. They’re the best duo.

Day Of Eating

Happy Tuesday!! I haven’t posted a full day of eating in a while, and I want to get back into consistently posting them because I know I get lots of ideas when others post theirs. To be honest, It’s been hard finding my groove again with nutrition since going through the divorce.

There were days I didn’t have much of an appetite and also days I was like “X, Y, and Z just happened, so I’m getting ice cream” haha. I’m starting to get my footing again, and feel more like a consistent, functional human being. This is just how I’m fueling my body right now, not what everyone should be doing. I believe “healthy” looks different on every single person. This is just to give some ideas, and help if you feel like you’re in a slump!

PRE-BREAKFAST

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Normally, I have my warm water with apple cider vinegar drink (posted HERE), but I’ve been using these Flora Healthy wellness shots instead lately. They have the same type of benefits, and I love starting my day off with a little somethin’ extra.

BREAKFAST

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Overnight oats, as per ushe. I post this recipe a lot on my Instagram, but I just do 1/2 cup of oats, 3/4 cup water, a sprinkle of pink salt, and 1 scoop of IdealRaw chocolate peanut butter protein in a jar. Mix it together and store overnight. I add hemp seeds, natural peanut butter, and some type of berries in the morning! **Use SWOLE for 10% off IdealRaw products.

SNACK

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The kids and I headed to the park once Jack woke up from his morning nap, so I grabbed a Square Organics (you can use “goodfortheswole” for 20% off) and some baby carrots for the road.

LUNCH

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Leftover salsa chicken (just throw chicken and salsa in the crockpot, and cook on high for 4 hours), with spinach, cherry tomatoes from the garden, green onions, avocado, and cheese on corn tortillas. Probably the least Mexican tacos ever made, but they hit the spot!

SNACK

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Iced crio bru (I posted about the benefits HERE), and 2 rice cakes with cottage cheese and avocado.

DINNER

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Turkey taco soup! I’m so ready for fall and all the good food that comes with it.

SNACK

This was after a leg workout, so I had 8 oz unsweetened vanilla almond milk, 1 scoop IdealRaw chocolate peanut butter protein, 2 scoops of IdealRaw superfood blend, and 1 scoop Collagen For Her collagen peptides. **Again, you can use SWOLE for 10% off any IdealRaw products!

Friday Favourites

We got back from a family vacation to Newport Beach yesterday evening, and there is a true MOUNTAIN of clothes on my bed just waiting to be sorted and put away. Holidays are the best, but unpacking is the worst, especially with little kids stuff too. 

We're easing back into our regular routine today, and I wanted to throw up this Friday Favourites post because it's been a minute, and I have a list of things that I love/have found really helpful lately. I hope you find them helpful too! HAPPY FRIDAY!!!

LOOPY CASES

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I bought this Loopy Case back in February, so I'm not sure why I'm only sharing it now, but it's amazing! I used to drop my phone at least 10x a day (triple that if we're counting how many times Piper dropped it a day). I think I've only dropped it like...maybe once since getting this case. It has a loop at the back for you to hold onto it, and it makes it so nice when I have my hands full with Jack, bags, keys, toys, etc. because I just loop a finger through and I'm good to go. It's honestly been a game changer since having kids, and I'll never go back to a regular case. 

I don't have a discount code with them, but I follow someone who does! Hers is "SWENSON10" and gets you 10% off if you're interested! I have the White Marble Original.

NATIVE

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My sisters all use Native shoes for their kids, and I finally got some on Amazon a couple of weeks ago for Piper. THEY ARE THE BEST FOR TODDLERS! They are waterproof, easy for them to put on by themselves, lightweight, and they don't rub. Piper's been wearing them non-stop since I got them. They have a 4.5 out of 5 star rating on Amazon, with over 2,300 reviews...so you know they're leeeegit!

VROOM

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Someone on Instagram posted about this app, so I downloaded it and LOVE it! They post a different learning activity to do with your child each day (you can add multiple kids and each has a different activity based on their age). I love doing this kind of stuff with my kids, but I run out of ideas, so this is really helpful, and you can set a reminder too!

ART SMOCK

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I took the kids to Ikea a couple of weeks ago, and saw this smock in the kids section. Piper is probably THE messiest toddler in the planet. She is a true savage when it comes to eating, colouring, and painting. Need I remind anyone of her painting a few weeks ago (see picture below). I never want to limit her creativity, but also...can you not, Piper. It was only $4.99 at Ikea (I don't know why it's more expensive on Amazon), but either way, it's been perfect to let her create, but also limit the clean up. She calls it her "painting dress", and it goes all the way down to her toes!

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Piper has the best curly hair, but it always has to be tied or clipped back otherwise she can't see a thing haha. I LOVE these headbands from Why Knot Bows because they are soooo cute, and also do an awesome job at keeping her hair back. They come in the best colours too! I love all the neutral and fall colours.