Sleeping Baby Must Have

•• B A B Y •• S L E E P I N G ••

A big juggle for mama on vacation is what to do when baby sleeps during pool time fun.

The kids are screaming, laughing, and splashing away at the pool, the DJ is playing the latest hits, and hubby is enjoying a cool glass of beer at the swim up bar.

What about mama? With the MyBaby portable white noise machine, you can order your Ice blended Margarita, and lounge on the chair next to baby.

Ever since I learned about White Noise machines, they go with me everywhere. To the pool, to the park, every outing that includes a naptime. Since white noise eliminates most noises, baby doesn’t hear the DJ, or the other kids screaming and playing in the pool. Instead he sleeps under the hushing sound of ocean waves hitting the coastline.

There are many different sound machines out there. You just need to find the right one that works for you. I simply spent $25 for this machine this is the Homedics Sound Spa MyBaby portable white noise machine I found on Amazon. It is the best $25 I spent on a sleep aid for my children.

Total naptime on the lounge chair: 2 hours 🙌🏻

6 Ways to Take Care of MOM

You have just finished an epic 15 loads of laundry; including the bed sheets, towels, dish towels, mop pads, and everything else you could get your hands on. The stove is spotless, not a single dish in the sink, and the sink hasn’t sparkled like this in ages. The kids are fed, showered, and all tucked in bed. The hubby is out with the boys celebrating a successful and tiring week of work. Before you know it, it’s 11pm; way past your bedtime, and you realize you haven’t done anything to take care of yourself.

As moms, it’s so easy, and natural, to take care of our children, significant other, and all the housework, that we forget one important person to take care of. MOM! It doesn’t take much to take care of ourselves, but we don’t really make it a priority. After all, if we don’t take care of ourselves, who will?

It doesn’t take much, here are 6 simple things to do to take care of MOM.

1. Appointments — When is the last time you took the kids to a doctor’s appointment for a check up, or to a scheduled appointment they had? I’m sure you know the date, time, doctor’s name, what was discussed, what was planned. Now what about MOM? How many times have you postponed, or cancelled an appointment because of kids, errands to run, or whatever reason, and told yourself “it will get better on its own”. I know I have. I’ve postponed so many doctors and dentists appointments, I can’t even keep track. Make your appointment and go. A healthier you, is a healthier mama. You deserve it!

2. Mani/pedi — Take a look at your nails. Are your cuticles growing in? Nail polish falling off? Go. Get it done. Let someone else take care of your hands and feet. Sit back, and relax. You deserve it!

3. Make-up — You know when your children are finally taking a nap, or when you wake up early and everyone is still asleep, take 5-10 minutes and put on some make up. Whether or not you’re rocking your mom-bun, put on a little bit of make up and rock a glowing face. You deserve it!

4. Bath Soaking — You give your children their baths every day, but when it comes to you, you take the fastest 2 minute shower so you can get back to work taking care of your kids, family, job, and keep the house running like clockwork. Mama needs a break too. Take out your favorite bath bomb, or favorite essential oils, or even bath salts. Go ahead, soak it all in. Take 30 minutes, heck, take an hour. Have a glass of wine? Take it with you. You deserve it!

5. Shopping — I don’t know about you, but 80% of my shopping is either for the kids, or items needed around the house. I don’t remember the last time I had a shopping trip for myself where I’m not buying nursing tops or nursing bras. We tend to always get things for our family, and never have enough energy, or time to try on that cute shirt on the hanger, or the dress that you know would look awesome on you. Go ahead. Leave the kids with a baby sitter, and go! Try on clothes, get something that will put a smile on your face because MAMA deserves it!

6. Date Night— If you have a toddler, or a preschooler, you’ve probably answered your child’s same question over and over and over again: “Mama, what’s that?”. You need a break. Every now and then, you truly deserve to get away.  A date night can unwind both parents. It’s a way to get out of the house, have some adult talk, and come home energized, relaxed, and refreshed. You know why? You deserve it! My simple tip for date night: don’t talk about work or kids. Talk about your relationship outside the house, what makes you stronger as a couple, and what you both need to work on. It will truly put both parents on the same page.

There are many ways to take care of MOM, I hope this list helps, and motivates, you to put yourself first.

Take care, MOM. You truly deserve it.


20 Realistic New Years Resolutions

Every year, I make a New Year’s Resolution, and every year, it gets tucked under the giant “mom” pile of things that need to get done, and somehow is never found again. Not this year! This year is going to be different. This year, I am going to post my resolutions up on a wall so I see it every day and make sure I accomplish more, do more, and make my blog HUGE!

I hope this New year is a successful year for all my fellow bloggers. #BlogOnLovelies!

  1. Write at least 1 blog post a week
  2. Add a recipe section on my Blog
  3. Add baby food recipes (since William starts solid foods this month)
  4. Get back down to pre-pregnancy weight (very doable if I focus)
  5. Figure out Pinterest (I don’t know why it seems gibberish to me)
  6. Become active on Pinterest, and Twitter
  7. Follow through with my daily planner
  8. Reach 5K followers on Instagram (currently at 2.3K)
  9. Start a YouTube Channel about motherhood and all the crazy stories that come with it (I’m really camera shy, so it will be challenging to me stepping out of my comfort zone)
  10. Go on more Date Nights (Once a week)
  11. Visit family members more
  12. Plan more playdates for the kids
  13. Make more homemade dinners
  14. Do a body cleanse 4 times this year
  15. Use at home gym weekly (mainly stair master)
  16. Finish 1 round of Insanity Workout program
  17. Take a photography class/lesson for blogging
  18. Explore 10 museums with the kids
  19. Create a sturdy mommy group that creates a positive environment for the kids
  20. Plan at least 10 weekends of a “staycatation”

I know there is a lot more I can do, and a lot more I can write down, but in reality, if I personally keep my plate portioned, I’ll get more done. If my plate is overfilled with too many ideas and too many activities, I will burn myself out, and not be able to give my 100% to my family.

I hope you can make a New Years resolution that is realistic, and will be able to follow through.

Happy New Year!!


Toddlers and Tantrums

We’ve all been there. You’re in the middle of your shopping run, or a quiet day at the library, or maybe trying to get your errands done as quickly as possible, and it strikes: the LOUDEST, and LONGEST tantrum you have ever seen. Bring it on, Toddler. I’ve got this! IMG_8446 2.jpg

As moms, we learn to read our children quite well. I can tell from the moment my toddler wakes up if he’s going to have a good day, or a bad day, just from his morning routine. Today, was one of those days where I said “oh boy” and waited for it to hit.

Have you ever stopped to think about all the new things a toddler is learning on a daily basis? Toddlers have a lot going on in their tiny little brains. Everything from learning the numbers, letters, manners, sharing, a second language if the parents speak more than one. It’s all new to them, and they’re trying to constantly make parents proud by doing their best. They truly have a lot going on in their brains, and sometimes they don’t know how to deal with it. As adults, we get a coffee break, a little “me time”, and if we’re lucky, a little soak in the bath tub to unwind from a crazy day. Since toddlers aren’t able to communicate exactly what is going on in their mind, or how they are feeling, they lose control and have a tantrum in the middle of whatever errand it is you’re trying to get done peacefully.

I try keep these 5 things in mind when it comes to my toddler having his tantrums. And being 2, I know I am nowhere near the end of this phase with him.

  1. Reassure your child that he/she is a good boy/girl.
    • They can’t control their tantrum, they’ve had a long day, and they’re trying to deal with it the best way they can.
  2. Tell your child that you love them.
    • This may be the most important thing to do. After your child has calmed down a bit, remember to tell them you love them more than anything. Children do not want to upset their parents, and they definitely do not want to disappoint them. Since they can’t really control their tantrums, make sure they know they are not disappointing you, and that you will get through this together. Hug them a little tighter, and sneak in an extra kiss or two.
  3. Remove your child from the situation.
    • Since they can’t really control their tantrums, it is the adults responsibility to help ease the moment. By removing your child from the area, whether be it a play yard, a friend’s birthday party, story time at the library, or if you’re in the middle of your shopping trip, it’s the best thing for them. You can’t stop and try to explain the situation because at that very moment, their mind is going a million miles an hour, and are going to continue to cry and scream and toss their bodies around. Simply remove your child so they can calm down and relax themselves. Don’t worry what other people will think; for those who are parents will all understand what you’re going through.
  4. Talk about your child’s tantrum after he is calm.
    • Aside from telling your child you love them, it is important to sit down and talk things through with your toddler. Some people think since their child is only 2, they won’t understand what is being explained to them. Trust me, they understand everything you say. They may not like it, but they will undstand it.
  5. Don’t lose your cool.
    • I know it’s very difficult to keep calm when your child is having a tantrum, but your actions will either fuel or calm the tantrum. If you yell and scold at your child while they’re having a tantrum, you’re only fueling their tantrum more. They will scream louder, hit harder, kick their feet harder, and maybe even hold their breath so long they will turn pale blue (which is a normal tantrum behavior, by the way). However, if you keep your cool, sit down next to your child throwing the tantrum, maybe patting their back, and helping them calm down, you will still be in control of the moment. At the end of the day, you’re still the adult.

Do you have some other tips on handling a temper tantrum? If so, comment below and share with other mamas who may be going through the tantrum stages.

Stay calm mamas. We’ve got this!

A Swaddled Baby is a Happy Baby

What is the #1 item that every newborn baby needs? You guessed it, a swaddle.

From the moment a baby is born, the nurses will clean the baby, swaddle them, and hand them to the mother for bonding. As newborns, babies are more comfortable being swaddled since they have been in a tight and confined place for the past 9 months. Although some people may argue against swaddling, I am all for it. I strongly believe that a swaddled baby is a happy baby. Finding the right swaddle is key. I have tried several different swaddles before finding one that works well with my baby. If you are still not convinced, read the advantages below of swaddling your baby.

Advantages of Swaddling:

  • Swaddling a baby, especially right after given milk, may lead to longer sleep. Even if the sleep is 30 minutes longer, hey! we’re talking 30 minutes of extra sleep for a sleep deprived mom.
  • T00A6422Swaddling a crying baby may soothe him/her.
    • If you’ve done the “shush” dance, rocked the baby, sang every lullaby you know, rubbed their tummy, and even gone outside for fresh air, swaddling might just be the answer.
  • Once the baby is a little older, maybe between 3-6 months, they become curious and want to pull and tug on everything. A baby who is not swaddled may be able to roll over and tug and pull at the crib bedding, or the crib bumpers which may suffocate him/her if it falls on their face. Having the baby swaddled keeps their hands by their side, and away from tugging at anything that may harm them.
  • Research has shown that a swaddled baby may reduce the risk of SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome).
    • We all know that babies fidget a lot, they are constantly kicking their feet and moving their hands. Swaddling a baby and laying them on their back will keep them from potentially rolling over on their tummy. It’s one benefit that every mom can agree on.

I personally have many swaddles, all different sizes, from different companies, at different prices, but I’ve noticed I keep using one specific swaddle over and over again. My swaddle from SwaddledBabe has been my go to swaddle since William was born. Not only is it the largest swaddle in size, measuring 47″x47″, it has the perfect thickness. Some swaddles I have are so thin, I feel I need to place a blanket over my baby just to keep him warm, which can be dangerous because if he kicks his feet enough, the blanket can end up on his face and suffocate him. Other swaddles I have are so thick, my baby is sweating when I undo the swaddle which is very uncomfortable. My SwaddledBabe swaddles are 100% breathable muslin cotton which provides with the maximum air flow which keeps baby comfortable. But, my favorite aspect of these swaddles is the fact that they are machine washable and dryer friendly. I have some swaddles that need to be hung dry so they don’t shrink. Seriously, who has time to hang dry, then iron swaddles? Especially with a toddler running around and playing peek-a-boo with the hanging laundry.

So, why do I swaddle William?

T00A6427First, let me mention, that every child is different, and what works for one child, may not work for another. Maybe swaddling won’t work for your baby, but, I swaddle William for several reasons:

  • It calms him down when he is feeling uneasy.
  • He moves his arms so much when he is sleeping that he wakes himself up. When I swaddle him, he is unable to move his arms and sleeps longer and more peacefully.
    • Even when he is fussy, I wait until he has fallen asleep before swaddling him. That way I am not fighting him, and his moving arms.
  • I know I can have the air conditioning on during summer nights without having to place an extra blanket on top of the swaddle. These swaddles keep him nice and warm.
  • When people come to visit him, it is easier for my guests to hold him, and pass him around. I feel more comfortable having him swaddled since not everyone has kids, and not everyone knows how to hold a newborn.
  • He’s so cute as a little burrito. 🙂

This post contains affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission if you make a purchase using this link. Use promo code: hooked 

Hello, again.

IMG_7348Peek-a-boo! I see all of you. I am so humbled with the love and support I have received this past month on my social media in regards to my blog. Each and every one of you have encouraged and inspired me to continue with my blog, and tell my story as it is. Social media is a wonderful place to grow your blog and grow your network (mine being the mommy network). Being a stay-at-home mom is very rewarding, yet at times, can be very lonely. Thankfully, having a supportive mom network on Instagram and on the blog helps with lonely moments while sitting in a quiet room nursing my newborn baby. I’ve welcomed over 800 new mom bloggers, and influencers across all my social media platforms, and I thought I’d take a moment and introduce myself with some unknown things about me.

  1. I was born in Armenia (a small Europearmenia-mapan Christian country), but moved to the US when I was 2.
  2. My younger sister is my backbone, and biggest motivator for my blog entries. She’s always cheering me on, and encouraging my next blog posts; including this one.
  3. I spent 18 years doing competitive gymnastics, and hold awards such as State Champion, and Regional Qualifier. My gymnastics career came to an end due to an injury which dislocated my hips, and broke my wrists. (I’m all better now though).
  4. I am a bookworm amongst my friends. I’m totally okay with that.
  5. In high school, I asked my crush to Prom in front of my math class; He said yes. Now we’re married and have 2 boys.Gerbera Daisies
  6. If I ever have a girl, I would name her Amelia Belle.
  7. I love random facts.
  8. My favorite season is Autumn.
  9. My favorite flower is the Gerbera Daisy.
  10. I handwrite all my blog drafts before typing them up.
  11. I love planners, stationaries, calendars, and ALL “teacher-y” stuff that helps keeps things organized.
  12. My favorite drawer at home is my laundry drawer. It smells so clean and fresh.
  13. My favorite number is 4 because sometimes “3rd time’s the charm” doesn’t cut it.
  14. Everyone complains about the L.A. traffic; it really doesn’t bother me.
  15. My 3 favorite colors are pink, yellow, and white.To Do List
  16. Belle is my favorite Disney Princess.
  17. Sometimes, Motherhood scares me, and I wonder if I am cut out for the job.
  18. I love country music.
  19. I have an inner cowgirl, and I wish I lived in Nashville.
  20. I love making lists, and “To-Do” Lists.

Although I can go on and on, I’d like to leave it off here and continue another time. I love meeting new moms, and building a strong network because after all, no one gets us moms like other moms. I would love to hear a few things about each of you, so I can get to know you a little bit better too.

  1. Where are you from?
  2. How did you get into blogging?
  3. What’s your favorite thing about motherhood?

Thanks again for all the wonderful followers, you truly make blogging worthwhile.

Rock on mamas,

Hooked on BUGZ!

I hate bugs! Everything about them creeps me out, and makes my body itchy. So, what do you think I did when I found out there was a Bug Fair coming to our local museum? YUP! You guessed it! I bought us tickets and took my toddler, Michael, to explore the bugs. Now, why would I do such a thing? Because I saw Michael playing with some ants in the yard, and was showing interest in creepy crawlers, and it was the perfect opportunity to expand his curiosity.

I sucked up my fear, got my bug spray, and headed to the museum. I also took my mom just incase I was too creeped out and Michael wanted to touch some bugs. I can honestly say I learned more from Michael that day than I thought I would.

I had forgotten that toddlers are like sponges, and absorb everything. I caught him saying “EEEWWWWW” to the bugs, and realized I had been to vocal about my feelings towards that bugs, and not letting him decide on his own if it really is “eewww” or “coooool”. I had to take a step back and let him explore. I needed to see this Bug Fair through his eyes, and not my own.

These are the top moments from my experience at the bug fair with Michael.

He called them a “lobster” and made claw fists and was walking about the scorpion zone with claws.
He made the lobster connection since we were learning about sea animals the day before.


It was an endless 30 minutes of “WOOWWW”, “Ooohhhhhhh” and “Aahhhh”.

At First, I thought he was just acting and trying to be cute, but later noticed his excitement as he spent several seconds staring and admiring each butterfly. He signed “butterfly” to me, which made me 100% sure he knew what he was looking at. He”s seen countless butterflies in our yard, but none this huge, and definitely not any that are royal blue, and larger than his face. He clearly appreciated the butterflies and was even able to touch one that was out on display.













This category was the strangest for him since we rarely see beetles in the city. At first, he was unsure what he was looking at, but slowly was able to distinguish the feet, antenna, and even pointed out some eyes on the larger beetles. He did spend a long time observing and letting it all soak in, but I did hear

IMG_4433him say “eeww” a few times which is fine with me because it is his own opinion about the specific beetles.


Although my opinion on bugs has not changed, and I am still creeped out by them, I am so glad I was able to take Michael to the Bug Fair and expand his curiosity on bugs.

This may turn out to be a yearly tradition we do for him, but maybe next year, daddy will take him; I’m getting itchy just writing about the creepy crawlers.



Stay Hooked,



This week has been such a beautiful week. Not only did we welcome our newest bundle of pure joy, William, but I have also been nominated for the Liebster Award 2017 by the lovely Alina Marcu from A sweet, kind hearted Doctor, Nutrition and Lifestyle Consultant. She is very dedicated to her blog, and writes from her heart. As a nutrition and lifestyle consultant, she encourages a healthy lifestyle, and is always thriving to live each day to the fullest.

Why and How I started my blog Hooked On Stories

There comes a time in everyone’s lives where you stop, take a look around, and realize that you love doing something so much that you are willing to spend endless amount of time on it. Before I started my blog, I was a teacher teaching ninth-grade English, at our local high school. After I got married, I started working with my husband at our family business as the office manager. When I became pregnant and slowly transitioned into a stay at home mom I wanted to continue to write because, well, 1. I love to write and 2. I wanted to write my story; hopefully, one day, somebody would find my story interesting and it would effect their life in a positive way. Since transitioning into a stay at home mom, I began to write, and while writing, I have discovered myself all over again, and am continuing to learn new things about myself. One of the biggest things that I have learned about life and myself is that every day is a new story, every day we write one page of our life, every day little stories make up the chapters of our lives. We get hooked on our life, hooked on little moments, and hooked on making ourselves better; Day in and day out. Hence “Hooked on Stories”.

Two Top Tips for New Bloggers

  1. Find your niche
    The most important thing you can do for your blog is find what you are going to write about. It’s important to know what you’re going to write about and put all your effort into that one niche. The more you write about different categories, the more unorganized the blog will be. Pick your one passion, your one calling, and write about that.
  2. Be Yourself
    Write like you talk. Don’t use a thesaurus to sound “smart” and don’t try to be like someone else. There is only one you. Let that you shine. The right audience will find you, and have a stronger engagement with your blog.


There are a few steps you have to take as you accept this award:

1.Write a post about how and why you’ve started this blog.
2. Include the person who nominated you into your post, add a link to their blog and a short description.
3. Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award.
4. Give new bloggers two pieces of advice.
5. Notify the bloggers you have nominated for this award and provide the link to your post.
And now, the time has come. The bloggers I choose to nominate are:

  1. Vivienne Singer of The Wordy Mom
  2. Neuza Alexandra of Azuenture 
  3. Dorin Cristian Cizmas of The Sleepy Blogger 
  4. Julie Greer Chickery of Chickery’s Travels 
  5. Sarah Elsbury of Tangled Perfection
  6. Catherine Owen of The Musings of my Life
  7. Kerri Byam of Toronto’s Favorite Brooklyn Girl
  8. Urszula Elka Durzynska of Ooh La La in Paradise
  9. Jen True of The Brilliant Feminist 
  10. La Toya Hedgepeth of Thoughts of a Woman Revealed 
  11. Megan O’Keeffe of Debatably Dateable 
  12. Fusionista Ren of Fusionista 
  13. Aleigha C. Israel of The Pen of the Writer 
  14. Lia Sanchez of Ideas that Build Cities 
  15. Rubab Bangash of Recipes by Bangash

*Do not forget to follow the rules presented above.

Stay Hooked on the Stories that create life’s chapters.


My Top 7 Life Lessons for New Moms

Becoming a mom has been a never-ending learning experience. With baby #2 coming in 7 very short days, I’ve decided to write a quick list of things I’ve learned since becoming a mom: just so I can remind myself when things get tough in the very near future.

  • LET. IT. GO. 

Whatever happened, whoever said it, for whatever reason it was said, just LET IT GO!
It’s not the end of the world. Life will go on, and your way will not always be the only right way.


Every child is different, grows differently, and develops at their own pace. If you compare kids, you’re only hurting yourself. After all, are any two adults the same? NO. No, they’re not. So stop wanting kids to be the same. Especially when you compare kids who are not even the same age. That’s just ridiculous.


We do the best we can as moms. We feed our children organic, we cook at home most of the time, we give them healthy and natural snacks with no sugars, no preservatives, and no additives. So every now and then, if they want to snack on some chips, or have some cake, or cookies, it’s ok.


Please, child, play outside, fall down, scrape your knees. Be a child.

We have our whole lives to sit in front of the TV, or tablet, or smartphone, but only once to play, laugh, and grow. The more they play and fall, the stronger they will be: both physically and mentally. How else are they going to learn to get back up when they fall down?


This actually goes back to not comparing kids. Every child will become potty trained when they are ready. If little Suzy was potty trained by 18 months, then GREAT, you just saved a lot of money on diapers. But if little 3-year old Johnny is still in Pull-Ups, that’s great too. When he’s ready, he will ditch the diapers for the big boy undies. Who are we to judge children, and other moms who are trying their very best, day in and day out.


Yes, we’re all supermoms in our own ways, but even supermoms need help. Does your husband want to cook dinner? Yes!! By all means, go for it. Just clean the dishes after, haha!
Is a family member offering to take the kids out for an hour? Yes! Please take them for two hours, feed them, and then bring them back.
Does your mother-in-law, sister, mom, grandma want to help clean the house? By all means, come on in!

There is NOTHING wrong with accepting help. It doesn’t make you weaker, or vulnerable. It makes you human. We forget that sometimes.  **Note to self** Don’t forget that!


Everyone will give your advice whether you like it or not. Some are pretty interesting, and others are just out of this world crazy!

You know your child best. Do what is best for your child, and don’t let what anyone says get to your heart: especially if the advice is coming from someone who isn’t even a parent. Some of those are just plain whack!

My advice is this: Listen to what others have to say, and you decide which advice stays and which you leave at the door. You and your partner can, and will, make the best decisions that work for you, your child, and your family.

The bottom line is this. Everything is going to be alright.

Que…Bob Marley – Everythings Going To Be Alright



Hooked on Ball

In the Armenian culture, children (mainly boys) are exposed mostly to chess, soccer, weightlifting, and boxing, while girls do dance and/or ballet. Living freely in America is such a blessing for us because there is so much more out there that we can expose our children to. Of course Michael already has a chess set, and more soccer balls than I can keep track of, but we love exposing him to different sports and letting him find his niche.

I recently got him a Tee-Ball set, thinking it would be beneficial for his hand-eye coordination, and to my surprise, he used it several times before putting soccer balls on the tee, and trying to bat with the soccer balls. It was pretty funny, but at least he was hitting the ball (which was my main goal to begin with).

My husband wanted to see what Michael’s reaction would be if we took away the tee, and tried to pitch him the ball instead. To both of our surprise, he hit the ball on his very first try. Not only did he hit the ball, he “knocked it out of the park” as my husband likes to say.

My husband and I both believe the more he is exposed to different types of sports, he more well rounded he’ll be: both as an athlete, and as a person. In Armenia, baseball is unheard of, and American Football is not even an option. It’s interesting for us to see what kind of sport he will get into.

I grew up doing competitive gymnastics my whole life, while my husband played basketball, and was captain of our  high school water-polo team. We already know he’s going to participate in those sports because, well, why not?

I wonder, what are your thoughts on different types of sports? Do you believe in having your child stick to one sport, or introduced to a variety of sports? What route have you taken, and what was the outcome?

All the best,