Happy Thanksgiving!

thanksgiving 2014Happy Thanksgiving, mamas! We’re so thankful for the opportunity to get to know other moms in Northwest Arkansas through the community created here on nwaMotherlode.com.

Thank you for taking the time to visit the site and join us on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and our email newsletter. We hope you have a wonderful holiday weekend with friends and family. And for those of you on the road this holiday, we wish you safe travel.

Mamas on Magic 107.9: Good Sleep Sense

Sleep sliderMoms are notorious for not getting enough sleep and we often get sick (or stressed) simply because we’re not giving our bodies the rest they need. So during a recent week of the Mamas on Magic 107.9 radio show, we talked about some simple, practical ways to get more sleep and a better quality of sleep.

We also talked about ways to cut down on the number of those crazy, tiring dreams and tips on how to wake up happier, too.

To hear the Mamas on Magic 107.9 radio show, listen to Magic 107.9 at 7:45 a.m. each weekday. Or click the left side of each audio bar below to hear them now.

Ways to wake up happier

Cutting down on crazy dreams

Going to sleep easier

Sleep tracking with apps

Foods to help you get sleepy


Beauty Buzz: Help! I have dry skin and lips!

Dear Andi,

My lips are chapped, my skin is dry and itchy, and it’s only the beginning of winter! What do you recommend for these problems?

A: It seems like we went from summer to winter just like that — and the abuse our skin gets from sun exposure to the dead of winter with cold winds and heated homes is sapping every bit of moisture from our skin, with no time for recovery.

This is leading to a particularly itchy holiday season. Now is the time to get ahead of the game and prep your skin for what is predicted to be a loooong winter.

First of all, the biggest culprits for dry skin and chapped lips are not the elements bombarding you outside, but the comforts we take inside the house. Cranking up the heater sucks up all the moisture in the house, leaving none for your parched skin. 

waterSo, get ahead of your New Years resolutions and resolve now to increase your water consumption. Bonus: Having a belly full of water will help keep you from overindulging on holiday treats (at least a little…mmmm, fudge).

Also, it seems counter-intuitive, but lingering in a hot shower will make your skin drier. In theory, we should all be taking short, lukewarm showers, and that might be fine and dandy further south, but it’s cold up here in the mountains and mama needs her steam. So, to combat the moisture-zapping effect, lotion every inch as soon as you get out of the shower. Try switching to a heavy duty cream or lotion infused with shea butter, like Nivea Smooth Sensation ($7).

Gentle exfoliating several times a week is the most important step to ridding yourself of the inevitable dead skin that plagues you. We are all used to the body scrubs with little grains of sand or sugar in them, but if used too often or too aggressively, the traditional scrubs can leave tiny cuts or scratches on your skin and aggravate the problem. An alternative is chemical exfoliation. Gold Bond Rough and Bumpy Skin uses a combination of AHA, BHA, and PHA to gently exfoliate while moisturizing.

Dry skin is especially noticeable on the gentle skin of your face that is constantly exposed to the elements. Unless you want to scare the pants off of everyone by trying to pick up your kids wearing a ski mask; I don’t recommend it.

Unfortunately, when see those patchy spots of flaky skin, the temptation to pile on lotion will only protect your skin from further damage — but it won’t actually solve the problem. You have to exfoliate. The dream would be one perfect product for every skin type across the board, but sadly, there’s no such thing.

My recommendation is to look at your favorite skin care line, whether it be Olay, Estee Lauder or Mary Kay, doesn’t matter. If your skin reacts well to it, look to the same line for either a chemical exfoliator or something gentle like jojoba beads. Finish off your routine with a lotion with sunscreen. Even though we associate sun damage with warmer weather, those UV rays haven’t gone anywhere and even reflect off of snow and clouds for a double whammy. Also, chemical exfoliators can make your skin more susceptible to burns.

aquaphorNow, to prettify your pucker! One more time: exfoliate. Yes, even your lips, but no one wants to put a yucky chemical that close to your mouth, so this is a perfect time to DIY a scrub with a tablespoon of brown sugar and a dash of honey. To repair already dry lips, gently rub your yummy scrub in circles on your lips. Once repaired, prevent any more flakes by keeping a protective product on your lips at all time.

My kids and I like the flavor free Aquaphor and the silicone like substance is great for protection and repair. It is also great for chapped ears or a red nose. If you want a little color, Baby Lips by Maybelline comes in several different hues and isn’t sticky or flavored like some glosses. I cannot resist licking my lips if I wear anything flavored..like a 3 year old…it’s a real problem.

Okay, now that I have been sitting here itching the entire time I wrote this, whether it is psychosomatic or my own neglectful skin care, I’m going to go douse myself with body balm and curl up with a cup of cocoa…or wine. We’ll see how smoothly bed-time goes.

Happy Thanksgiving, my Lovely Ladies!

Andi, 2014Andi, mom to three adorable kiddos, loves playing with makeup and hair. Lucky for us, she shares all her tips and tricks with us here on Beauty Buzz! If you have a question for Andi, send it to mamas@nwamotherlode.com.


Meet the mama who won the Metro refrigerator!

tricia, cropped

Congratulations to Tricia Griffith, winner of the Metro “Big Chill Giveaway” refrigerator.

We had to convince Tricia that she really did win! We think it will sink in when Metro delivers that beauty to her house! Tricia has been a “regular” on Motherlode for many years and we’re thrilled that she won the fridge.

We asked Tricia a few questions so we could all get to know her better:

What did you think when you got the email that you’d won?

bigchillWhen I received the email, I honestly thought it was a joke. I have no idea why I thought you would randomly send emails out telling people they had won, but it just seemed way too good to be true!

And believe me, we could use a new fridge! I’m somewhat of a stickler when it comes to big purchases. And I’m the kind of person who believes in the saying “if it’s not broke, don’t fix it”.  Our 14 year old refrigerator now has yellowing handles, a VERY slow water dispenser, and a broken light in the freezer. But it’s still kickin’ in the cold department!

 Tell us about your family:

I am a stay at home mom who is never at home. I teach Zumba one night a week and on occasion work at Imagine Art Studios or substitute for Mother’s Day Out (A girls gotta have her spending money). But I LOVE being free to go to class parties, field trips, school lunches and every once in awhile, have a shopping day with friends!

I am married to Kevin, a super hot drummer/ computer nerd (is that an oxymoron?) who has worked for Walmart in the IT department since we moved to Bentonville in 2000. We have two boys. Peyton, 8, is an aspiring class clown and social butterfly. Nothing is serious, he laughs constantly, and he loves to be around people. Brandt, 4, wants to be a soccer player when he grows up, is the loudest person I know, and probably won’t smile at you if you’re not on his short list.

What’s your fave feature of the new fridge?

My favorite feature about the new fridge may be the flip up, slide under shelves to make room for taller things. But I’m almost as excited about the SMUDGEPROOF stainless steel! Anything to keep fingerprints from showing gets an A+ from me!

 What do you expect to be transferring over from your old fridge to the new one?

I can’t wait to transfer all my fresh veggies and fruit over to the new fridge! And maybe a bottle of wine and celebratory dessert for me and a few friends. Kevin says “more room for beer”, and the boys are excited to fill it with cheese.

Where will you be celebrating Thanksgiving and Christmas? Will family and friends get to try out the new fridge?

Just until yesterday, we thought we were celebrating Thanksgiving at my in-laws house, but the boys insisted that we have “a feast” at our house this year. So the new fridge will be here to hold Thanksgiving dinner and share with family. We will also be here for Christmas, so Santa’s milk and cookies will have a brand new place to wait!

metro appliances and moreI can’t say Thank You enough to NWAMotherlode and Metro Appliances for offering such an amazing giveaway! NWAMotherlode has been a go-to website for me since it started and has always been full of great information and support for moms in NWA! I am so thankful that there were two moms out there who decided to share such an amazing website with the rest of us!

From us and the folks at Metro, you’re welcome! Enjoy your new refrigerator, Tricia!!! And please send a few pics when it’s delivered. We want to live vicariously through you :)

Mealtime Mama: Cranberry Relish


We love finding new ideas for dinner (and great, natural products) on the Ozark Natural Foods website.

Below is a recipe for cranberry relish that would be beautiful on a holiday table.

Cranberry Relish

onf recipes2 cups fresh cranberries
2 granny smith apples, cored
1 large orange, peeled
1-1&1/2 cups turbinado sugar

Directions: Mix all the ingredients together in a bowl, then blend together in a food processor. Use the lighter settings so it doesn’t look like mush but more of a coarse blend, chill and serve. Add more or less sugar depending on your taste preferences (I prefer tart flavors over sweet so I use less sugar). You can also substitute the sugar with dates or try adding other fruits like mangoes, pomegranate seeds, or even pineapple.

Recipe from Pauline Thiessen, Produce Manager

If you’d like to see more ONF healthy cooking recipes, click here. If you’re thinking about holiday gifts, they have gift cards available for purchase on the website. Click here to buy a gift card for the person who’s really hard to buy for, but loves all things fresh, natural and organic! They can also use the gift cards for lattes and lunch in the cafe :)


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