Maximizing Your Traditions

Caleb’s 4th birthday breakfast!

Because quality time is one of my love languages, one thing I LOVE are family traditions. Ever since I was a kid, I got this warm feeling surrounding things of repetition, that brought memories with my siblings. Like Sunday nights we had family dinners, or around the holidays we would bake together. I’ve always wanted to be that mother that had a million things my kids remember from their childhood, and it felt like it was all about the traditions! Whether it is watching a “Christmas Story” on Christmas eve, or having a special breakfast for our kids birthdays, I LOVE things that are done in significance for events that can be passed down through generations.

In my family we have a great tradition that was started by my mother in 1988. I am honored to say that the tradition is still alive today and I hope it can be passed down to my children. Our family tradition lies in this little white and yellow sleeper!

My mother purchased this neutral sleeper for her first-born child and at the time she didn’t even know the gender. In the coming months, my oldest sister was born and THAT was the outfit she wore home from the hospital. That was when the tradition was born. Since then, every child my mother has had, me included, has worn this exact sleeper on the way home from the hospital. So that means this same outfit was worn in 1988, in 1991, in 1995, and in 2000. 

But it doesn’t stop there! My oldest sister put her daughter in it, and I put all of my children in it. So now we have added 2005, 2016, 2019 and 2020. That is over 30 years and over 2 states, and 2 generations this thing has been in rotation!

The Rules of this tradition are:

1. Retrieve the sleeper out of the picture frame from my mom’s house

2. Wash it

3. Use it ONLY when baby comes home.

4.Then record baby’s name on the inside flap of frame.

5. Wash it and put it back in frame.

I used this sleeper last and even though I am the only one of my siblings having babies right now, I still follow all the rule and return the sleeper to my mom in between uses.

This is one of my favorite traditions because it is simple, low maintenance, and easy to accomplish, because it is around a very special time in our lives. Plus it is something each kid gets to take part in before they even know it!

3 Simple Steps to Starting Your Own Traditions

  1. Choose something that fits YOUR family! – I tried doing traditions that my parents did with us, or something from a movie, but when my kids don’t look like they enjoy it, I listen to that, and modify it to their liking. I mean they have to be having fun or why are we doing this?
  2. Less is more– You don’t need to have 15 small traditions (unless you can handle it) Try picking one really strong tradition that is close to a holiday or birthday, something that takes pressure off and is easy to remember.
  3. Remember to be flexible + have fun! – The truth about traditions is that they are to enhance the unity of your family. When anything gets too strenuous or stressful, it takes the fun out of the experience, and the last thing we want for our kiddos is to have forced fun. With our growing families, our interests changes and so does theirs, maybe your tradition is that you always change the tradition!

With these three tips you can learn to maximize your traditions and maximize the time with your family.

Here are the pictures of all of my kids in this sleeper! May our tradition continue!

Caleb 2016

Declan 2019

Noah 2020

BONUS! Here is a picture of my Niece Malaya when she came home from the hospital in 2005!

Leave a comment! What is your family tradition?

Maxi.Mum with the Mini.Mum

– Clothing Edition –

Have you ever wanted to be the minimalist mama? Maybe she’s the mama that you follow on social media, or the mama in your family, maybe she’s the mama on your favorite show. Well who ever she is, I know you think to yourself, ” how does she manage to live a minimalist lifestyle with multiple children?”

I was blessed with three kids, three years old and under, and living in a place like Massachusetts, it is easy to get wrapped up in having tons of clothes for different seasons, different children with different genders and styles. Buckle up, I have been living in community with extended family for the last year, with my family of 5, and I have found life hacks to decluttering your clothes and living a minimalist lifestyle with a family.

4 Practical Tips to Having Minimal Clothing with a Big Family

1.Change Your Mind – Being a minimalist mama starts as a mindset. You have to be able to love your space more than clothes. (Sorry Ladies) When I had my first born, Caleb it was unbelievable how many clothes we had, bins and bins, of baby clothes, clothes his size, and clothes that the was going to ” grow into”, everything you could think of. He completely grew out of things before I could get him in them! It was really bad. I didn’t even realize how much he really had until Jo and I started making space for Dj.

Bringing a girl in, I knew I had to get rid of some bins of clothes so I went through and did a sweep, and got rid of, what I felt was a lot, donated them to the local thrift shop. I know I say this calmly, but it was HARD! Doing a sweep of your first kid’s baby clothes was one of the hardest things I had to do in this time. But I just knew it had to be done. So once you get your mind prepared to love your livable space more than clothes you can see clearly what clothes are needed, verses what are just wanted.

2.Out Source Your Clothing – When my family and I lived in Florida, I had a village of about 4 mamas who were all relatively budding their families at the same time, and we created a rotation. When one person was done with maternity or gently used kids clothes we would pass them along to another mom. The greatest thing about this was that you would have what you need, only when you need! When my kid grew out of things another mom was ready to receive all the things that were still good enough to pass on, and I would have space in storage for other things we needed.

BONUS – When I moved to Massachusetts and I left my “clothing rotation village” I found a company called Rent – a – Romper that was almost exactly like having a rotation village again!

Rent -a- Romper is a subscription clothing membership that grows with your child. You start with your subscription, them about your little one, the size they are in even the colors you love to see them in. Then they create a capsule just for your kid with super cute clothing! How is this helpful? Well, when your kid grows out the clothes you SEND THEM BACK! Just like that, with the prepaid return envelope. You keep your space and your sanity! Before you know it, your next capsule is being prepared. This company is a Godsend! Checkout DJ in some of the cute clothes in her capsule cute clothes.

— I have 5 spots for a 20% off code! If you want one click here to shoot me an email! Don’t miss out! —

3. Hand Them Down– In my family ” hand me down” clothes were the best! If my older sister had clothes that I loved, I knew they were coming to me next. This little practical thing can help you maximize your space by re-using clothes with each kid. I know what you’re thinking. ” What if I have different genders of kids?” Well, I have two boys and one girl, and from my boy to girl I just keep things that are still in great condition if they are neutral. I spice up my little girl with a cute bow or cute shoes to make the hand me downs still girly and cute. My oldest son is three and my youngest son is 1 month, so when my daughter is done with the clothes and my youngest son isn’t in it yet , we just thrift it to save space!

4. Appropriate Storage– One thing about being a minimalist mama, when it comes to clothing is having appropriate storage for clothes. Clothes that are in rotation each day should fit in the draws. Having appropriate storage for seasonal pieces that you don’t swap out of fast like coats, boots, and gloves should fit in a bin that works for your storage space. Be realistic! For example we have a small place right now so, only one large bin of heavy clothes are in storage for all of the kids. If I find myself wanting to buy new coats or boots I make sure to swap out what was in storage, to make sure they fit. If they don’t fit in the bin, then I have to thrift some things.

In the kids rooms I have two dressers and space saving draws. (Like ones that are attached to the crib) When I go through the each kids clothes I make sure they all fit in the draws. If things don’t all fit, then I have too much. I, first, make sure things are their size because like any mom I can get behind on what sizes are in the dresser, and I may be able to fit everything after that! If not then I go through, to only keep necessities, and a couple of my kids favorites. For example, Caleb needs Pj’s ( 4-5 pair), basketball shorts ( 1-2), shorts to go out in(3-4), sweat pants (2-3), long pants + long shirts (1-2 in the summer), Sweatshirt (1-2) Tee- shirts(varies). Caleb loves graphic tee shirts and I always have to weed them out after a couple months. I don’t usually count socks and underwear because they tend to get swapped out rather quickly over time.

What I learned in this journey of minimalism with clothing is that, each kid is different so I encourage you to tailor your level of importance of items to your kids. My kids love playing outside so we have lots of play clothes, and I prefer to have less clothes but that means I do laundry more because of the clothing turn over. I have really found my joy within my system, but what ever is important to your family, remember to consider that.

Try out these tips, I hope they help you be the Maxi.Mum you are and have less clothing clutter and more space for quality life, so you can live in true, joyful motherhood.

Birth in a Pandemic

PART I – THE JOURNEY


40 weeks. Some mothers never make it that far. So, in the mist of frustration in reaching and surpassing that mark for the third time, there is gratefulness. In everyone’s wishes to keep birthing moms safe, COVID- 19 caused some differences in my birthing experience. So, here’s my birth story during a pandemic. 

I arrived at the hospital on my 40-week mark, alone, masked up and gloved up per the regulations, but feeling good. I wasn’t feeling labor yet, but feeling my hips opening and my body getting ready for labor, so I knew we are in a good direction. At this appointment, they did all the necessary vitals, and everything came back normal, like I knew it would. Most of my excitement was to get my cervix checked because I was hoping to already have started dilating. They checked my cervix and I was a “fingertip” dilated, just like I had been at my 39-week appointment. Knowing my kids usually take longer than the average I started asking the necessary questions.

I asked, flat out, “How long can I wait to have my baby naturally before you try to induce me?” She was floored by the directness of my question but answered truthfully. “Well, we will run tests to make sure baby is ok, and if everything checks out, we will give you to 42 weeks.” She then said the most comforting words I’ve heard from a health professional in a long time. 

“Felicia, we don’t want to induce you, we want to wait with you as long as you want to.”

This statement had been a great start in making up for some of the pain I’ve felt in the past, from health professionals in the birthing industry. It eliminated the pressure of measuring up to the Boston Medical standards. 

Although what she said was encouraging to help me relax, my lack of dilation still tried to defeat me. I went home and decided that in all of my 40 weeks of pregnancy I, at most, had two weeks left and I COULD do this! To me at the time 2 weeks felt like a separate lifetime. I was tired, heavy, not able to sleep well, had daily back aches, I was easily frustrated, I had heart burn all day and night, and I was, frankly, just ready to meet my baby! But I decided to take it one day at a time, and just give my baby patience, that’s what I wanted everyone else to give him right? 

41st week

One more week had passed of sleepless nights, many contractions, trusting my body and waiting, walking like a maniac, having sex, drinking all the raspberry tea I could find and doing medicine ball exercises to help naturally induce labor. Along comes my 41st week appointment. At this point I don’t even remember how I made it here. I was scheduled for a nonstress test for the baby, and an ultrasound to check my fluids, again I was alone. No one to hold my hand, or to convince me things would be fine. I felt like I was at the hospital all day, all tests came back great, and we were correct, my baby was just chilling out.  But I was excited to get my cervix checked again because I was SURE there was some kind of cervical movement. My cervix was STILL a “fingertip” out of the ten centimeters of dilation. 

I wanted to cry! Defeat started to set in again, memories of not progressing in my c- section birth came to my mind, and I was getting worried that I wasn’t going to have him naturally. “Lord? I know I prayed for my baby to come naturally, when he is ready, but I didn’t know it would take this long!” Then I turned my speech to my unborn baby. “Noah, honey, if you don’t come out, they are going to go in there are get you out! Come on baby boy.” 

I went home and told Jo all that had been said, to update him. Together we prayed and just gave it to God, because there’s nothing we can do but trust that he has it under control. I proceeded to get lots of rest, because if was preparing to push a baby out, I needed to sleep and store up energy.

The next day, I was now 41 weeks and 1 day, I started having some irregular contractions but just tried to stay on my feet to keep them going. So, I went through my regular schedule and ended up having a burst of energy. I deep cleaned, and sanitized the kids’ room, washed all of the backed-up laundry, vacuumed the house and cleaned from top to bottom. Once I got ready for bed, I felt my contractions getting a little stronger, but I was NOT convinced. I told my doula, the update via text. This was my first time in all my birthing experience, having a doula. I was so excited but because of the pandemic, she wasn’t able to come to my house and labor with me. All she was able to do was support us over the phone or via video. I guess that’s better than nothing. I went to bed and had an awful night of sleep because my contractions were rhythmic but still not strong enough, I was sleeping in between them but not able to sleep through them. Little did I know, tomorrow was the day. 

Tune into part II – The Transition

Birth in a Pandemic

PART II – THE TRANSITION


I woke up at 5 am and started timing my contractions, 41 weeks and 2 days. While Jo, and the kids slept I put my worship music on and realized that something was happening, and my contractions were feeling real. Once Jo woke up, he got the kids fed, and came directly by myside. 

Because of this pandemic, my husband was home at the time I needed him the most. But also because of this pandemic, it was him and I alone laboring. No family, no doula, not my sisters, not my mother or mother in law, like we are used to. This is our third labor, so we broke out all of the tricks we had done in the past and began the journey to meeting our son. We called my sister, who was at work, to come and help with Caleb and DJ at our house so we could just have peace while my contractions came. Halfway through the day. My contractions are 7/8 mins apart and I’m exhausted, because of lack of sleep and the energy it takes to contract. Jo and I took a walk around the neighborhood, and when we got back to the house, we were shocked to see that the bathroom piped had backed up into the shower and there was over flowed poop water everywhere! 

Perfect timing! So, as I am wobbling down the stairs having contractions 7/8 minutes apart, and Jo has to leave me to go and deal with this emergency. In my room, alone, rocking to my worship music, moaning through my contractions, I could hear him battling the bathroom beast. I tried not to be resentful at the situation because I NEED my husband during labor. He is my rock, my constant, and it was just him and I this time! 

I just began to pray. And not the cute, little prayers where you are finding nice words to express how you feel, I just was saying “ Please Jesus, let him be done soon!” Jo is my anchor in labor, he massages me, rocks with me, and literally holds me up. All I remember is he returned, hours later, freshly showered, and ordering dinner. My contractions were now 5 mins apart. Exhausted, he supervised my nap time, and kept a close eye on me, rubbing my back and timing my contractions that were trying to space themselves out. After one hour of me sleeping in between contractions, I woke up to the kids being in bed, and jo was getting me ready to bring my contractions back to steady. We did squats, and I wanted to kill him! They hurt so much but put my contractions 4 mins apart. Jo knew what he was doing. Thank God for him! From there, my contractions got closer and closer. It was now 2 am, and I don’t even remember how we got there. We called the hospital to confirm coming in, when my contractions were 3 minutes apart and they told us it was good to “get ready” to come in. 

The 15-minute drive to Boston Medical hospital, in the back seat on all fours was the hottest, longest, bumpiest, most painful ride I have ever been on. Thank God that my sister drove, and my mother stayed with our kids. I knew I was getting close and my contractions were now 2 minutes apart, jo assured me that we were almost there and although my source of time was warped, I believed him. We got to the hospital and the only entrance I’d ever used during the pandemic, was closed after hours because of Covid. I had gotten the wrong info! But we hopped out of the car with our bags anyway and while we are walking up to the door my eyes scan and I saw no one! A contraction hit and I bore down on the glass doors when a security guard comes over to us and opens the door, he immediately calls for a wheel chair to meet us where we are and without question, realizing how close my contractions are he wheeled me directly upstairs. 

“No, she came through the Menino lobby door, and hasn’t been screened.” The guy told someone on the other side of his walkie talkie, as he pushed me to the elevators. I slid my mask up onto my mouth and nose when I remembered the times, we were in.  “Well her contractions are now one minute apart; we have no choice!” I heard him warn.

We approached the desk and they took my information, very quickly and got me into my triage room, separating Jo and I AGAIN. They had to screen him separately and wanted to get started with me. Aside from nurses, huddled around one desk in boredom, it was a ghost town. The doctor met me in the room, and I am writhing in pain as he is trying to inform me of the plans for this early morning. Jo finally joins us, and I am able to breathe. While his team hooked me up to monitors and one nurse started my IV, he was extremely calm in explaining that in between my next contraction I would be tested for Covid -19. A very invasive test where a long Q- tip would be stuck all the way down my nose, basically to my eyeballs for 10 seconds. I figured what could be worse than theses contractions right? 

Wrong! It burned and my eyes watered! I hated it, I felt like I had been drowning in a pool and the water was stuck in my nose. I coughed and gaged after the 10 seconds was up. After the test, he proceeds to check my cervix to see how far along I was he told me I was 9 centimeters dilated and that we were going to have a baby very soon! 

I looked up at jo in shock, and happiness. I couldn’t believe it, he couldn’t believe it either, 9 centimeters was so encouraging to hear as a woman with the long day I had. They wheeled me into the labor room, I ripped off my mask and apologized because it was incredibly hard to breathe through contractions with that thing! The team of women there, assured me I didn’t need to apologize, and no mask was necessary at a time like this. They encouraging me to listen to my body and push when I felt it. At the last minute Jo turned on my worship music again and before I knew it, I had given birth to my son in 30 minutes, and 4 pushes. My Doula made it there on the second push and was glad she didn’t miss the “good part”.

Baby Noah Elias Luceus, my slip-and-slide baby, was born Friday May 22, 2020 at 3:53 am at 6LBs and 13oz, 20 inches long. I can’t believe I did this. 

This quick birth was healing for us in so many ways. My goal in planning a birth during a pandemic, of such a vicious virus, was to labor at home as long as I could to minimize the time in the hospital. We felt safest at home, we felt protected, less exposed. this birth challenged Jo and I, and we saw what we were made of. Together, we accomplished something we’ve never done before. Something this hospital never sees. I’m proud of us, I’m proud of our story, and it was an answer to prayers. My COVID -19 test came back negative, and our birthing team was amazing, patient, and accommodating. Let’s just hope I don’t have to see them, in labor and delivery, again for another 2 years or so. * Fingers crossed! *  

40 Weeks + Quarantined

Bonus Journal Entry


Classic Doctors appointment

The last two months of my pregnancy has been in quarantine and they have had their ups and downs, I’m sure everyone can agree with that. It’s like when this first started it felt like a little vacation. Partners are home, you are shopping a little more to have things you may need last minute, you are filling your extra time with sleep and creative family time, sounds like my vacations. But when did the switch happen to days feeling like they are floating by in a flash, and weeks don’t really exist? When did i start forgetting the date?

Well today is a date I cant forget. I am 40 weeks pregnant. I realize it really is a blessing to get to this week. There are many moms who don’t make it this far in their pregnancy for one reason or another. Some kids are born early and some aren’t born at all. So I vow to not complain because this post could have been one of loss or complication. Thank God it isn’t.

I have always reached (and passed) 40 weeks with my pregnancies and the illusion is that my baby has a watch in there that goes off at the appointed time, then he or she makes their way out. Wouldn’t that be nice? If that was the deal we could plan accordingly, get baby’s things all ready and make a hotel style reservation at the hospital. The spontaneous experience of these last days are what pop the cork of pregnancy, this surprise of labor is fully apart of the experience. Is the pandemic effecting that for me?

In the words of a good friend, I have a “Comfortable Womb”. My son Caleb was born at 42 weeks, and we basically had to kick him out with induction. My daughter came on her own but at 41 week. Baby 3, here we are, at least at 40 weeks. In the hospital they tell you your due date is a estimation, but baby can come when they want. They say natural labor should healthily occur between 37-42 weeks. But why do we feel the pressure of the 40 week mark? This pandemic has everyone on edge, especially at the hospitals. With my track record of birthing weeks, I feel like I will have to fight for the ability to go into labor naturally and not be induced.

If you know me well, you know I am fully equip to fight for what I feel like I need. They have already told me that once i hit a couple days after the 40 week mark, we will talk about my options… What does that even mean? I’ve made up my mind. I am NOT being induced. The beautiful thing is that because of the pandemic, they aren’t wanting people in the hospital unnecessarily and as long as i feel normal, and my baby is moving appropriately i will not be alarmed. Bringing my baby earth side, without medicine to start it is important to me, because my body doesn’t do well with medicines and rushing. So as of now, we are 40 weeks and quarantined, and using it to my advantage to have natural labor occur. I refuse to be stressed on behalf of someone else’s schedule for my baby or body.

Mothers Day 2020

The scripture in my devotion today was:

” Let us hold unswerving to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful.”

Hebrews 10:23 (NIV)

My hopes and prayers in my pregnancies + labor have been consistent. I pray for a healthy pregnancy free of pain, and complications. I pray for a safe labor, with no incidents or accidents, and surrounded by the birthing staff that needs to be there. I also pray for a healthy baby, with all their limbs and parts, joyous, just the way God intended for them to be. Pandemic or not, God is faithful to give us what we pray for,and that’s what I intend to receive.

Been There, Done That

Top 10 Gadgets for New Moms to Maximize Your Life


Get ready to slay this May with my top 10 gadgets for new moms and mommies to be! May is the month that I am due with my third baby! Having been in this position two times before, over the past month, I swung into the habit of checking out new mommy products and getting my registry done.

Our goal as a Maxi MUM is to use the time and space we are given effectively. With the COVID-19 outbreak happening, focusing on the things I need for baby verses the things I just want to have is a must.  All moms go through the feelings of nesting and wanting every product under the sun for baby, but some things we just don’t need. Listen, I’ve been there, and with two kids, I’ve done that! This list below will allow you to maximize your momming, by having what you need and keeping your space and finances efficient. When you can maximize your time and space as a mom, you can insert other things in your life that need or deserve your attention. What we end up realizing is that with kids, less is more.

(Warning- This is a product list not a brand list, because I believe every mom has the right to choose a brand that is within her budget or a brand she just loves!)

10. Backpack Style Baby Bag – There are a MILLION brands, and styles of baby bags. Usually as a first-time mom, we want to go with the cutest, purse style bag because it seems like the easiest transition to our newfound motherhood. But the backpack style bag has very well distributed space, pockets, compartments, and mainly STABILITY. Having two straps on your back will help you wrangle all other things when leaving the house with baby. With this style bag I can even get my husband to comfortably hold the bag without feeling weird, trust me it’s such a plus! The truth is, when your bag isn’t slipping and you have it secured to your back, you are less stressed, less frazzled, and less likely to drop something. It is also an easier transition to having multiple children.

As a Maxi MUM community is important! We can be everything to everyone, but let’s face it, we need our mom friends to invite us over and to decompress with. Over the years of having children, I have declined invitation to family events because of my desire to stay on a nap schedule with my kids. These are two important things, family event or nap stability which one do you chose? Therefore, we need number 9.

9. Portable Bassinet – I come from a family that would lay a child out on a bed surrounded by pillows at the family cookout if a baby fell asleep. For me that just raises anxiety and I can not have a good time at the event because of the worry of the child falling. So, for baby number 3, I put a portable bassinet on my registry. One that is small, lightweight, collapsible, and can be carried by my oldest child who is 3 if need be. This will help me be able to enjoy my community of other moms outside of the home and keep my young ones on a nap schedule that favors our family pattern.

Milkies brand Milk Saver – with cute little carry case

8. Breast Milk Catcher Cup – When/if you begin breastfeeding you will notice that with each feeding once your milk “lets down” with baby attached, the other breast will start to leak milk. It is called “milk ejection reflex” and I’m not sure why our bodies work this way, but it is activated by our baby’s suckle. For a long time, I would just wear a breast pad and let it soak up the milk that came out. But when I realized how much milk I was wasting, I started attaching my breast pump to the opposite breast while feeding to save the milk. THAT was a hassle to do every two hours. I found this sweet little gadget that is called the “Milk Saver” and you just tuck it in your bra on the opposite side of feeding and it catches all the milk that is let down! Then you just pour that milk from the little cup into a storage bottle and BOOM! No more wasted liquid gold, it’s a life saver. The cup is silicone, and the comfort of it may be something to get used to but, don’t give up on the cup!

7. Reusable Nursing Breast Pads – If you intend to breastfeed having these will save you a lot of money, and it will also save the plant! They take a little getting used to because when your milk first comes in, your ducts will be full causing you to be engorged and you will need to change them more often. But knowing that you can toss them in the wash and never leave the house to buy a box of disposable ones is comforting. This is a must add to my registry, I have some left over from having my daughter DJ, but I have misplaced a few pairs. They even come with their own machine wash bag, so you don’t lose them. I’ve never been a reusable diaper woman, but I do love a good reusable nursing pad.

6. Soft Sling/ Wrap – A soft sling is an easy thing to add to your baby bag and will keep baby comfy and feeling womb like no matter where you are. I will whip this thing out when our baby boy comes, and as he grows there are different wrap holds for his appropriate weight and age. Because I will have two little ones around with a newborn now, I will need all the extra hands I can get, so if my baby boy can be in a cozy soft wrap sling, it will help me.  Plus, the bonding time is great, your baby is used to being inside of your body, knowing your scent and hearing your heartbeat constantly so this is a nice transition for him or her.

5. Bibs with Plastic backs – Everyone knows babies can be a little messy. They spit up, they drool, and once they start eating up right, the get food and liquid everywhere. You can spend a lot of money on bibs that just look cute or have cute sayings, but we want to find things that are going to be cute, and still functional for our lives. The bibs with the plastic on the back provides a barrier for spit up, and food stains that ruin clothes. They also keep clothes from being wet and needing to be changed all day. Let’s avoid the wet neck rash and stop changing wet clothes multiple times a day. Invest in the plastic back bib so you will save cute outfits in the future, and minimize your time doing laundry.

Plastic back bib + Booginhead brand Pacifier clip

4.Pacifier clip- As a new mom we are attracted to getting those little animals attached to pacifiers and don’t get me wrong, they are so cute! But in real life, they can be lost just like a pacifier with no attachment. It can still drop, and still be hard to keep clean if it makes it to the bottom of the baby bag. So, by baby number three for me, I am sticking with a good old pacifier clip with a rope or kid safe cord. Its attached to baby so, this way it is easy to find when it’s need quickly and won’t end up at the bottom of a baby bag. (For sleeping safety ALWAYS use a pacifier with no attachment cords or animals.)

3.  Nursing Bras / Nursing Tanks – Breast feeding is a time of bonding for mom and baby and you will be doing it very two hours!  You will not want to be uncomfortable in the process. That is why the nursing bra or tank is for you. The nursing bra is a comfortable, supportive bra that has a latch at the shoulder on both sides to open and easily access breasts while feeding. The tank top is made the same but more stylish to throw a blazer over and look business casual if you need to. It allows you to breastfeed at anytime and anyplace, without lifting your shirt or making you and baby uncomfortable. They come in all styles and colors to match what you need and are sized appropriately because our breast will grow and shrink with feeding. My mother in law got me my first set and I was shocked at how comfy and functional they were. I am guilty for still wearing them when I’m not breast feeding!

New born DJ joining me while folding laundry

2. Portable Baby Swing- Having a big stationary swing is ok, they can have many functions, vibrations, and songs but you will soon realize that anything moving, your baby will like. As a Maxi MUM, choosing simplicity, and judging how much space you need verses how much stuff you need is key. Once your babe really starts growing, you will quickly find yourself getting rid of that large piece of equipment within months to make room for a walker. Having a portable baby swing solves many problems for me, in my experience. My portable swing is mostly used in different rooms of the house because it can sit on a table, join you in the laundry room, or be bedside while you watch a show. It is light weight and when baby grows out of it, you can fold it up, bag it and tuck it away in almost any storage. It runs on battery and helps save space when not in use. With a portable swing get ready to effectively accomplish tasks while soothing baby, whether in your home office, or in the kitchen. The bonus is the cover is easy to take off and machine wash.

Skip * Hop 3-in-1 walker

1. Multistage Products – The children’s market caters to all moms. It can cater to the mom who wants to buy every little thing, and it can cater to a Maxi Mum, who want to save space and money. We must keep our eyes peeled for the products that are made for us. Multistage products are mostly labeled “2-in-1” or “3-in-1”, something of the sort. They start off as one thing, like a sit-in play table for your little one, then when you add the wheels it can turn into sit-in walker, and reconfigured one last time can turn into a push walker for your budding 1 year old.

The common misconceptions with buying multistage products are that:

A. “I will not get the full quality of each age appropriate product.”

B. “My child or I will get tired with the same product/toy over the year.”

C. “I will never get around to changing this thing multiple times!”

 Here is the truth,

A. These items cost a little more at the initial buy because they will save us money in the long run. If you are concerned with the quality of the product, remember, the standards of quality depend on the brands and the prices of the product.

 B. Your child will always amazed, and if a product is still meeting your needs without spending more, you are maximizing your finances! Your little one is growing and changing so much in the first couple of years that you will just be happy to have what you need already at home.

 C. Changing a multistage product around for your little over the years takes less commitment than you think. As a stay at home mom, I think “Is this something I can do without my husband’s help?” and it usually is! Most of the time it requires planning, a screwdriver, and a little time but it is totally worth it.

In my picture this Skip* Hop 3-in-1 product for my daughter serves us so well, because having three separate toys in our playroom or cluttering our storage doesn’t help maximize life. Trust me! Go through the brands you like and see what they have for multistage products for all ages, you won’t regret it.

So here it is! My top list of 10 gadgets that help maximize your momming and everything else that follows! Let’s keep our time and space efficient, so we can continue to be productive, happy moms.  Remember to do your research! Please check all age and weight requirements on all products. Also, don’t forget to look at many product reviews before purchasing.

What is the Maxi.MUM?

As a mom we agree to wear plenty of hats. We are a teacher, a lover, a disciplinarian, a nurse for a scraped knee, a chef, a maid, oh and we also offer up our bodies as sacrifices for 9+ months to expand humanity – just to name a few. As crazy as this job description is, you will find that most of the moms in your life, and maybe you included, voluntarily do this job. No matter the strength we have, day after day, month after month, year after year, we repeat the process and give of ourselves in unpredictable ways. Does that mean we lose ourselves in the process?

My name is Felicia Luceus, a 28-year-old married, stay at home mother of two and a half kids (one on the way), and welcome to the MAXI.MUM blog! After 4 years of marriage to my fearlessly supportive, husband and creating our quirky little family that can’t seem to stop growing, I have coined myself the MAXI MUM. I know, I know, how cocky of me right? Well to be honest when I run a house of 4 people, meeting everyone’s needs, making daily meals for an army, running a small business from home, and still being involved in my community, I HAVE to sit back on the couch at the end of the week and give myself a pat on the back. So, before we go any further, take a moment to reach over your head, with your right hand and do the same. Pat yourself on the back sis, because you made it. You have made it here, right to this moment, where everything is calm enough for you to get a good read, and everyone is alive. Bravo. These are the moments we need to celebrate, as small and as fleeting as they may feel.

My motto is to ‘Pursue Peace, Speak Life, and then Refill.’ In that, I have found the keys to maximizing in motherhood, and everything else that follows in a healthy joyful way. That is what makes you a MAXI MUM. The success of being a MAXI MUM isn’t getting everything done perfectly, every day. It is doing the best you can in each pocket of expectation in your life and the condition of your heart in doing so.

In our meetings together we will confront the reality of being a mother in the world we live in, where we are expected to be everything to everyone, including ourselves. We will turn YOU into a MAXI MUM. Maximizing on your job, maximizing in all your relationships, protecting your energy and successfully speaking the language of children. I have life hacks for raising good humans, making mindless delicious meals and purposefully self-loving in the process. We are trained to think that we must be perfect to achieve this, but I have a secret for you… we DON’T. Perfection is an illusion and it is the killer of true joy.

 If I were you, I would stick around, grab your mommy group and subscribe to this because the hills and valleys I’ve been through are going to help enlighten your journey and give you a couple of laughs along the way. 

Meet My Family!

My husband Jo. We’ve known each other since we were teenagers. He has always been my closest friend, and after 10 years of dissing him for other guys, I decided to give him a real try and date. The rest is history! He is a creator, supporter, carpenter, and lover of everything wood.

Our firstborn son Caleb Michael. He is a bustling 3-year-old, who dances and sings any chance he gets. He loves science experiments and hates coloring. He’s the best big brother one could ask for, because even when his little sister hits him upside the head, he’s still laughs and tells her to use gentle hands.

 Declan Joy is our daughter. She is our baby girl, at just 1 year she is so steady in her ways, she will smile only when she is ready. She loves to eat everything in sight. Upon meeting her, she will probably be using her baby sign language to ask you for more cookies.

Our newest baby Luceus is not here yet, but he is definitely apart of this family already. He is a much-awaited boy. Caleb has been praying for a little brother and this little guy will be an answer to those prayers. Little baby Luceus #3, we can’t wait to meet you May, 2020!

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