InStitches Embroidery & More

Are you looking to get jackets made for your kid’s sports team, or maybe group t-shirts for a bachelorette party?  InStitches Embroidery & More should be your first stop to fulfill all of your personalized clothing or graphic design needs.


In a quaint little town in rural Vermont you will find a woman burning the midnight oil as she combines colors and switches screens on her machines.  You might hear the tick tick of the embroidery machines running in the background as camo hats are turned into personalized uniforms for a local company.   The impeccable design style combined with beautiful color creations set this company next to some of the best in the industry.  It can be hard to succeed as a small-business in a small town, but the fact that this town and the surrounding area has supported and returned to this company for all of its personalized clothing and advertising needs speaks volumes.

InStitches Embroidery & More is a woman owned custom apparel and design company run by Kayla Bessette based out of Bristol, Vermont.  She purchased the company in February 2017 after being employed for six years as a Graphic Designer and Project Manager.  Looking back at her first year, with her first anniversary approaching, she has acquired several new large clients and has regained the trust of former customers who had previously moved on to different companies.  Positive feedback and loyal returning customers will continue to help this company grow and flourish in the years to come.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.


Her products range from custom embroidery and screen printing on clothing and hats to graphic design and promotional advertisements.   Every single one of her products are professional looking and of the highest quality.  At InStitches, the customer’s vision comes to life in a personalized custom product and brand to promote their business or event.  If the product cannot be produced on the premise by Kayla, she will happily find the best option to outsource any project.  She is dedicated to her clientele and has even driven two hours to buy shirts from a retailer for twice the price, because her wholesale supplier fell through, but the client needed the products that weekend.  This type of customer service and commitment to her craft is what will continue to help InStitches thrive and be successful.

InStitches, with Kayla at the helm, is a crucial part of the local community and even donates items to charities for good causes. She works with the Three Day Stampede, a yearly fundraiser to raise money towards finding the cure for Cystic Fibrosis.  She creates a new featured design each year and all of the proceeds are donated to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, seaking to find the cure.  She has also coordinated with the Vermont Air National Guard to make t-shirts for the organization.  Although the company is based in Vermont, InStitches is willing and capable of working with customers from anywhere to design your perfect product which will be shipped directly to you.  To start your order today you can contact InStitches at or visit her Facebook page at



Stay tuned for more on the Three Day Stampede Toward the Cure for Cystic Fibrosis in my ‘Create Good Karma’ section.  In the meantime, you can check out these links below to learn more about the disease and the way a small community has come together to battle it.


Small-Business Owners Assemble

As I spend more and more time thinking about ways to build and develop this website and blog I decided it would be really great if I could use it to help out others.  I mean who wants to just listen to me blab about myself and my adorable son right?  I have so many friends and acquaintances who are putting themselves out there, trying to make a living in this crazy world we live in.  I myself am now one of those people and wouldn’t it be great if we could all help eachother out a little bit?  Learn about the promotional offer, the future of this site and Monthly Giveaways below!


So I have decided to add a new directive to this fledgling project; Helping Promote Small Business Owners through my website platform in the form of exposé articles as well as my growing social media presence with promotional posts. There is also Ad space available on the website at a first come first serve basis.  Like they say, all press is good press.  So I put this out to my readers- if you own a small business, are thinking about starting one, or know someone who does and think they might be interested- reach out to me and see if we can put together some sort of partnership.  The more positive presence you have on the web the more people grow to trust you and your products.

Each partnership will be unique and catered towards the individual business. Not all businesses need the same type of promotion and I am capable of recognizing that.  Check out this great offer during this start-up promotional period, getting in on the ground floor of this project will not break the bank!  For only $50 I will write up a 500-1000 word promotional article and conduct social media advertising for your business or product, with 3 months included!  I will also include your personal logo and links to your websites and social media pages.  If you are happy with the outcome of our partnership after the first 3 months we can discuss continued shared support.

-For Product Based Businesses:  I will do an honest and positive product review on a product that you provide as well as discuss your business and your future goals.

-For Service Based Businesses:  Along with the article I will promote your business through a discounted offer of your choice with only a small return commision.  (This commision will go up so get in now to be locked in to that price!)


Furthermore, I plan to build on this idea and off this platform by establishing a small Online Store with the possibility of a brick and mortar down the road.  So if you have a creative side or have a product you are already selling and would like to expand, this is the perfect place for you!  Commissions will be fair and marketing of your products will be included. This would be a very low risk endeavor with only positive outcomes.  I have a unique set of skills that will be leveraged to make this endeavor a successful one!  So take a leap of faith today and do something great for your business!


My final promotional endeavor will be monthly giveaways, you heard me right, MONTHLY GIVEAWAYS!!  Giveaways are a great way to get exposure for your brand.  Because everyone loves free stuff right?!? The more exposure I am able to acquire the more people will see my webpage.  This means if you choose to place an add or I write up an article about your company, the more people will see it.  Giveaways will be held at the end of each month and the products will be grouped according to relevance.  So if you would like to get even more exposure let me include your product with one of my monthly giveaways!

Contact me at or message me on my Facebook page if you are interested!


The Pursuit is Happiness

Fed is Best…duh! | My Struggles with Breastfeeding and Formula

As someone who has been there, making the choice to breastfeed or formula feed your newborn can be difficult.  I say this as someone who has done both and understands the struggles that come with either decision. Here’s my story.


Feeding your baby is your #1 job once he or she is born.  Whether you choose to breastfeed or formula feed is a very personal decision and can be affected by many different factors.  This is a topic I struggled with minutes after my son was was born, a month in, three months in and 7 months in.  During my pregnancy I became incredibly anxious and breastfeeding was no exception.  As a Type A personality who needs to thoroughly prepare for everything and know exactly what to expect, giving birth to a new born human really threw me for a loop.  I read up on the different positions to hold your child while breastfeeding, picked up Lansinoh Lanolin Cream and Organic Bamboo Nursing Pads and bought 6 different types of bottles in case he didn’t like some of them.  As far as I was concerned I was as prepared as I could have been, especially since I obviously assumed I would be one of the women who was naturally going to be awesome at it. 

Boy was I wrong, on all accounts!  There is actual photographic evidence of my cry of pain the first time my son tried to latch but instead bit down as hard as he could with his toothless gums. Just because he didn’t have teeth doesn’t mean those little gums aren’t rock solid and felt like the jaws of death!  Throughout my stay at the hospital he just couldn’t seem to get the hang of it and I was already starting to feel like a failure as a mother, just a few days in to my new job.   By the time we got home from the hospital my nipples were so sore I was barely holding back tears every time he tried to nurse.  It got to the point where I would let him sleep longer than recommended because I dreaded the next nursing session.  Frozen nursing pads with lanolin on them gave me some short term comfort but everything just felt wrong.


So of course I jump on google to try to find some solutions and one thing that keeps coming up is a nipple shield.  What the hell is a nipple shield?  I think I remember one of the nurses mentioning that in the hospital but nothing else comes to mind.  So off to Babies-R-us we go to find this mythical thing called a nipple shield that I am convinced will solve all our problems.  Man was that exactly what it did! The Medela Nipple Shield is the one that I used, but you might have to give it 2 tries before you find the one that is the correct size for you.  Once you figure out the size you need, all you do is stick it on your boob and offer the pointy part to your infant who should latch on to it and start suckling.

The first time I used it was like a dream come true, there was still some soreness but nothing like before which had essentially felt like someone rubbing heavy grit sandpaper across one of the most sensitive parts of my body.  The best thing the shield did was allow my body time to heal without continuous pain, the worst thing it did was make it very hard for my son to learn to latch  without it.  Commence the unnecessary worrying and stress that for some reason all moms seem to do to themselves.  I ended up having to use the shield for the first two months of my son’s life and guess what- he is completely fine. 

I only ever met a few other women who were using or had used them in the past, or at least only a few women talked about it.  They seem to somehow have fallen into the category of things that lower your status as a good mom.  I hadn’t realized this until  a woman approached me at Mommy and Baby yoga class while I was using it.  She was so relieved to see someone else using one and until then had been embarrassingly hiding in the corner with her and her daughter both almost completely covered by a blanket.  It was then that I realized she felt ashamed for having to use a nipple shield and I was floored.  Sure I had realized it obviously wasn’t the norm and was slightly envious of women who seemingly had it all figured out but it never occurred to me to be ashamed.  That stupid little piece of plastic; while making the process much messier; had allowed me to supply my son with all of the nutrients he needed and I was incredibly grateful.


On the day of his 2 month wellness visit he kept refusing the shield so on a whim I gave it a go without it and voila!  Like the last two months didn’t even happen he quit the shield cold turkey and we were off on a brand new nursing adventure.  Unfortunately, this adventure hit some pretty rocky roads only about a month later when, due to lack of sleep and a pretty nasty cold, my supply dropped dramatically.  On the third or fourth night of my son screaming in my arms because he was still hungry but nothing more was coming out, my husband had had enough and opened a bottle of formula.  He offered this bottle to my starving son who sucked it down with abandon while I held him and cried, feeling once again like a failure.  This was something I was very unfamiliar with feeling but there was nothing I could do to change it.  Sure there are lots of suggestions out there on how to increase your output but most of them involve sitting for hours attached to the pump.  I already dreaded pumping and after very little success and many hours wasted I gave up. Looking back on my hospital stay and follow up wellness visits one jarring realization I had was; not a single healthcare professional ever uttered the word formula to me.  Guess what- it is not poison!

Once I came to terms with this new situation however, I felt relieved.  Relieved that not all the pressure was on me anymore, relieved to not have to always be within 100 ft of my son at all times and relieved that I could sleep for longer than 3 or 4 hours at a rip!  Supplementing with formula offered me a little more freedom which was the hardest transition for me so far.  I obviously love my son with all my heart but at the same time I was feeling suffocated and needed a breather.  So beginning at 3 months we started supplementing once a day with formula.  Unfortunately this creates a snowball effect and by 5 months my right side had completely dried up and my left side was hanging on by a thread as his intake of formula increased.  The fact that we sold one house, bought another and moved in and out of those respective houses only after a cross country road trip did not help my situation.  Right around the 7 month mark, my son started to get his bottom two chompers and would use them in his frustration if not enough milk was coming out. Ouch!  It was at this point that it became apparent that I was only trying to hold on for my sake and it wasn’t benefiting either of us to continue.

Although it is recommended to breastfeed for the first year of your child’s life, it is not worth sacrificing your sanity and well-being for.  I will admit I still feel guilty at times, convincing myself there was more I could have done to up my supply.  But forcing myself to do something that made me miserable was not going to be good for me, my son, or my relationship with my husband.  I do miss it at times but I know I will have another opportunity down the road and hopefully it will go a little smoother the next time around.  So I will leave you with this, no matter how you end up feeding your child, as long as you do just that, it doesn’t matter how!  Just don’t start them off with chocolate cake!

Jogging Stroller Struggles | Tips for Running with you Little One

I am becoming intimately familiar with my jogging stroller which I have established a love-hate relationship with.  On one hand it holds all my water, my phone, my chapstick (which is a necessity), my IdealLean, BCAAs For Women, Raspberry Lemonade and anything else I might need; on the other hand learning to run without pumping my arms while pushing a 30 pound stroller is a very different type of running than I am used to.  I’m not going to lie, it is definitely not the most awesome thing in the world but it is also better than nothing.  Plus once you get the hang of it, it gets a lot easier I promise.


If you are like me, you always have a goal to get in shape, lose weight, stay active and things like that.  And if you’re also like me, you fail at doing those things….often.  When I was pregnant and setting up our Baby Registry (which I obsessed over wayyyy to much) I thought “Hey- a jogging stroller will be perfect for me to go for runs immediately after birthing a 7 pound human in order to get back in shape!”.  Wrong, as usual.

However, I eventually did find my motivation about 3 weeks ago and began training for a half-marathon.   Although, that motivation ebbs and flows, especially on days after a particularly painful run.  So, my Graco Jogger Travel System is what has allowed me to take my little man and get my run on.   This has been particularly painful since I pretty much stopped running after my full marathon in May of 2016- drop the mic style.  But the pool in our backyard and the beautiful weather in Phoenix has driven me to find the motivation to get rid of the rest of that baby weight!  Plus my IdealLean, BCAAs For Women, Raspberry Lemonade are such a life saver! The difference I feel in my recovery is unreal and no this is not a sponsored post, I just love them and want to share with everyone how amazing they are!


One of the biggest adjustments I’ve had to make when running with my jogging stroller is what to do with my hands.  Obviously you have to push the stroller, but you’ve always been taught to pump your arms when you run right?  Therein lies the Ricky Bobby dilema.  My semi solution for this is to use one hand at a time, and switch arms often.  The tricky part about that is when you push with one arm instead of two the stroller tends to veer off in the opposite direction.  This is why hand control is very important and the more and more I run with the stroller the better I am getting at keeping the stroller moving straight ahead with one hand.  So, if you plan on running with a jogger, this is just something you will figure out as you use it.

The other big adjustment is having to pay attention to the road or sidewalk ahead of you to make sure you don’t hit any bumps too hard or run into anything.  Now this gets a little tricky because you have to see past the huge jogging stroller, and since I am only 5′ 2″ this can sometimes be a challenge.  If you hit a bump hard enough the stroller is capable of getting a little bit of air, just trust me on this.  So, all of this slowing down and avoiding can really screw with your pace and jack up your rhythm.  The best thing I can say for that is just push through it.

I love my jogging stroller and I hate my jogging stroller but as long as my little man will tolerate the time he spends in it I will continue to get whatever type of workout I can with it.


Getting Back to Fit•ish | How I’m Getting My Pre-pregnancy Bod Back

We all know those women who bounce back after having a baby within weeks, fitting into their pre-pregnancy jeans with their flat tummies carrying around an infant.  They are all over Instagram and Facebook and maybe you have friends who did the same thing (you know who you are).  Well I was not that woman, although props to those who did, I will forever be jealous of you.  And while I am getting closer and closer to my pre-pregnancy weight it looks totally different on me.  So what have I done you ask?  Well I have decided to train for a trail half marathon.

As my Instagram presence continues to grow with #fitmoms and #momsthatrun and #activemoms, I realize more and more how completely average I am. Ha! But that makes me a little more relatable.  No I don’t have a six-pack (maybe one day) and while to most people having run 1 marathon and 2 half marathons sounds pretty awesome-to the marathon running world that is crumbs in comparison.  So here is a little introduction into my active life, hopefully some of you can relate!


I have always been in decent shape as far as abilities go. As for physically, well, I have always liked cookies too much to ever get to any sort of ‘fitness model’ condition.  So deciding to run 13.1 miles isn’t all that out of the norm for me.  However, most people look at me like I am crazy when I tell them I actually enjoy running.  And I completely understand them because that was exactly how I felt also, up until a few years ago.  I started running half and full marathons after I turned 25 and had a bit of an identity crisis which pushed me to start setting new goals for myself.  I never actually thought it was going to be something I enjoyed or continued to do after my first one.  I am not, nor will I probably ever be fitness model material, but what is more important is being healthy and happy with how you look and feel.  So no I am not promoting for everyone to start running marathons, I get it, its not for everyone.  But finding that thing that challenges you to grow and become better is so important.


The day of my first half marathon I ran into an old friend who told me I would either hate it and never do another one or love it and want to sign up for as many as I could.  He was absolutely right, and not long after my first half marathon I began to train for my first full marathon.  Training for 26.2 miles is an incredibly different experience then training for 13.1 and I don’t anticipate doing it again anytime soon.  Don’t get me wrong, I am so glad I did do it but for now I am going to stick with halves and under.

Training for my first half was incredibly similar to my current training due to the fact that it had been a very long time since the last time I had done much running.  The first few weeks are miserable and I have to talk myself out of quitting multiple times a day.  Sometimes I only end up doing half of what my training plan called for.  I am currently way off of my intended plan and many miles behind but as long as you keep doing something it will all work out.  It’s once the runs start to become easy, your leg muscles get stronger and your stamina improves, you actually start to look forward to your run for the day and then it all feels worth it.  I’m hoping to get to that point soon!


Carbs. Carbs=Sugar. Sugar=Stored Fat.  There is much much much more to it than that, dont take my word for it, there is plenty of research on it.  But my point is this, cutting the intake of carbs increases your body’s need to kick into your fat stores for energy.  My husband and I have recently cut out almost all Simple Carbs and many Complex Carbs, and began following a very loose Keto diet.  As with pretty much every diet, there are pros and cons.  One big pro is that I was able to lose 5 pounds in only the first 3 weeks.  I also don’t have to starve myself, in fact if I am hungry there are lots of things I can eat whenever I want.  That means no calorie counting or any counting for that matter.  So if your bad at math this might be good for you!

The typical tagline of some of the biggest work out plans “Continue to eat all the foods you love!” is total b.s. if you ask me.  I love candy and ice cream but I definitely won’t lose any weight if I continue to eat those things.  That being said however, with a Keto diet you can actually eat a lot of foods that you already enjoy.  Cheese, chicken wings, burgers, Reddi Whip, and bacon are all on the okay list!  This is intended to be a lifestyle change but it is not for everyone.  This is not a plug for this diet and I am not recommending anyone to start it, it is simply part of my current active lifestyle and so far has been very successful.  I will now go enjoy some strawberries and whipped cream after suffering through a 6 mile run today!


Follow this link for some very good information about the Ketogenic Diet.  (you might need to copy and paste it)