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Wondering what we *really* want for Christmas? I asked over 200+ mamas to share their top holiday wishes. Here you go!

Common themes:

  • Kid-free time with our spouse
  • Relaxation / pampering / solo time
  • Staple clothes (new jeans, bras, workout gear)

Specific suggestions:

  • New jammies (several women love Lake Pajamas and P.J. Salvage)
  • Manicure/pedicure/facial/massage (aka, all the pampering and relaxation. Maybe suggested a facial with Lori at Salon Breeze and spa treatments at Fearrington Day Spa or a day at The Umstead Spa)
  • Salon day
  • Movie tickets
  • Sleeeeeeeeep
  • Planned dates (concerts, dinner, weekend away)
  • Kid-free weekend with the house all to ourselves
  • Solo hotel overnight (15% off Best Available Rate at the...

Practicing self-care is one of the best ways to stay well and feel joyful during times of stress. Here are some fun, easy, and festive ideas to get you in the mood for taking care of YOU.

1. Go on a date night! Do some no-pressure window shopping at the mall (window displays are so gorgeous this time of year!) followed by dinner or a movie. Take a walk or drive with your significant other look at holiday lights with a couple of hot cocoas in-hand! Schedule a festive trolley or train tour in the city.

2. Set the mood to relax. Candles, music, diffuse a favorite oil, or put on some crockpot mulled cider. Your house will feel warm and cozy in no time.

3. Shop (online!), wrap, and stash early. If you need to shop for the holidays, just get it done now. Keep a note in your phone reminding you what gifts you got for each person, but go ahead and wrap and stash gifts early!

4. Indulge in moderation. Dehydration can really take a toll on our mood as well as our skin. Don't go...



These words keep swimming around in my head. They are everywhere you look these days. On signs, on television, on social media. They are the perfect photos; the family gathered around the dinner table; the sweet kids' love notes. When I think about it, though, our health, our children, our friends... these are all things that we can be thankful for, but sometimes these somewhat global things can be overrun by the junk that fills our life. That constant rush of life and those little everyday stressors can often make it challenging to "look on the bright side".

Finding happiness or gratitude in everyday life is a constant choice. Each morning, you wake up with a chance to look at things in a different way. You may choose to focus on the great song that you heard on the radio. When your kids are fighting, you can choose to laugh at their comments to each other, or revel in the moment when the fighting turns, albeit brief, to tenderness. Savor it. There is joy to be found in every day moments, it just takes...


Watch our "Chief Mama Officer" on Spectrum News share her Top 5 Tips for Staying on Track During the Holidays!

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It starts at the end of October with Halloween and a few "fun sized" chocolate bars. Then Daylight Savings arrives in early November, bringing later sunrises and earlier sunsets. By Thanksgiving, you may drive to and from work in the dark, which can really demotivate your best intentions to workout. Enter Thanksgiving feasts, holiday cookies and cocktails, Christmas meals, a New Year's party (or two), and...BAM! All your hard work in the fall is out the window, and you're trying to renew your commitment to get back in shape.

The above is a reality for most adults. The six weeks between Thanksgiving and New Year's Day is prime time of easing up on your fitness routine and healthy nutritional habits. Most adults don't resume their regular fitness routine until April, leaving the 6 months between Halloween and springtime lost to colder weather and darker days.

But it doesn't have to be that way. Get yourself off the hamster wheel of winter weight gain and springtime re-commitment. Head into the holiday season and winter months with clear goals and a...


FIT4MOM is a lifestyle. Sure, moms show up for the workouts, but they also show up for the camaraderie. Our very own Stroller Strides mama Callie Tramantano describes the FIT4MOM village perfectly -- “Everyone is in the same boat as you. Everyone has kids, everyone has things going on. You all have goals and show up and give the best that you can give, and if that means you’re holding your toddler the whole time, then it is what it is, and you got your workout in anyways.” Read more here!


A little girl, just shy of three years, is sitting on the floor playing with her infant brother. Her older brother is sitting on the other side of the room doing his first grade homework. No one else is home.

A knock at the door. The oldest child answers to find two Social Workers and a Police Officer. The Social Worker tells the children they are going to take them to a safe place and the children are placed into the police car and leave their home. They are physically safe, but suddenly they are in a home with strangers. It is all foreign to them, unfamiliar and scary.

As a Social Worker and volunteer with the Guardian ad Litem program, I have witnessed, firsthand, heart-wrenching moments like this one. Now as a mother, I reflect on many of my cases with a new perspective. Whenever I am packing for a trip with my family, even just a night away, I literally pack #allthethings for my little one. Sound machine, his favorite pillow, blanket, stuffed animal(s), pajamas, water cup, and even a fun new toothbrush. All the things that will bring him a sense of...

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Body Back seemed intimidating to an out of shape 40+ overweight Momma of two girls. I mean I couldn’t do a burpee and believe me I have witnesses from a class I took… I couldn’t do a push up or hold a plank… Sit ups were only something I remember doing back in high school, and the horrible memory of running a mile to graduate high school was still etched in my head. “I can’t do that,” I thought. I have always been overweight; my boobs have always been gigantic, and I had to wear like 2 sports bras - it was all so uncomfortable. I am not an athlete. I have always been the theatre kid, the band kid… never an athlete. Then one Christmas my husband gave me a boob reduction and lift as a gift… He told me if this will make you happy then you should do it - so I did. That was the beginning for me.

With normal sized boobs - perhaps the world would change for me. But I needed to lose a little bit of my tummy first so the smaller boobs would not then be lost by my big gut - so I started eating a bit better and managed to lose some weight before my surgery. I was a 42G bra size. Now...


Ah, September. The air is getting cooler, the sky a bit more grey, the leaves are cascading down from tired branches above, and us mamas are fervently searching for our favorite apple spice (or perhaps pumpkin pie?) Yankee Candle to place atop the mantle. Yes, my friends, Autumn is coming.

School has started, vacations are winding down, and it's generally a pretty stressful time as families shift into new schedules and routines. Moms especially are exhausted, even after a full night's sleep. Why is that? Oh, right, that's because our brains never stop thinking. Like, ever.

This is the perfect season to give yourself a little grace, take a time-out, and do something that YOU enjoy. (Yeah, remember how you are an actual person with a name who has real hobbies and favorite things?) How on earth can we be good friends / wives / sisters / daughters / mothers if we cannot first find a sense of peace and stability in our own lives?

We asked our FIT4MOM tribe for their favorite self-care tips, hacks, and treats. Get ready to take notes,...


Back-to-school is no joke, mamas. Between the school supply lists, the countless loads of laundry (that just never seem to fold and put themselves away...), and finding the perfect backpack, school lunch ideas for our kiddos are often an afterthought. Sure, you knocked it out of the park when you found a lunchbox to match that perfect backpack, but now you need to fill it!

Prep ahead by thinking of your child's lunchbox in terms of categories. Ideally, you want to pack a protein, a fruit, a veggie, and a fun snack.

Proteins include things like eggs, nuts, yogurt, deli meats, cheese, tuna, chicken, nut butter, and whole wheat pita or bread.

Try fruits like grapes, kiwi, pears, blueberries, raspberries, apples, or bananas. Remember to think outside of the box when it comes to fruits! Does your daughter love pineapple? Prep an entire pineapple in a few minutes and it will last the whole week!

For veggies, get creative with things like shredded carrots or diced cucumber "disguised" in a tortilla roll-up with honey ham and cheddar...

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Our "Chief Mama Officer" Amy Rosso was interviewed on Spectrum News to talk about ways to incorporate mom's well-being into back to school planning! Watch the clip!

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Preparing for a new baby is exciting and stressful. As soon-to-be new mothers, we create baby registries, read books, and take hospital tours and birthing classes. Most of our focus is on getting everything baby will need and preparing for labor.

But there's a crucial component missing from our preparation, and it's not our fault. New moms just don't know about it yet...postnatal care for ourselves. We've all heard about labor, but there's very little talk about the recovery phase. My guess is because we're worried we'd make a mom-to-be nervous or terrified for the "aftermath" in the weeks following childbirth. I know I try to be mindful of how I advise a pregnant mom of things to consider.

Three weeks before I delivered my daughter, a dear friend sent me an email with the subject “Read Only When You’re Ready”. It was all postpartum FYIs and suggestions. I felt nervous and scared about giving birth, and was NOT ready to hear what follows. Literally two days after being home with newborn Sophie, I text that dear friend with “S.O.S. resend that email!”

I learned...

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On Saturday, June 24th, held our 1st annual Climb Out of the Darkness hike with 80+ mothers, fathers, friends, neighbors, grandparents, kids, & babies gathered together to raise awareness for maternal and paternal mental health. Together we raised $1,620+ for PSI-NC (Postpartum Support International of North Carolina) & Postpartum Education and Support.

Climb Out of the Darkness® is the world’s largest event raising awareness of maternal mental illnesses like postpartum depression, postpartum anxiety & OCD, postpartum PTSD, postpartum psychosis, bipolar/peripartum onset, and pregnancy depression and anxiety.

Climb Out of the Darkness® is held on or near the longest day of the year annually to help shine the most light on perinatal mood and anxiety disorders. The event features mothers and families across the globe joining together to climb mountains and hike trails to represent their symbolic rise out of the darkness of maternal mental illness and into the...

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Summer is just around the corner! You can start planning now to have a fun summer with lots of activities to keep up your child’s learning outside of school. Summer is an exciting time for children, but for some the change in their daily routine can be a difficult transition to make. Having summer plans and a routine for the day can help children make the transition. Talk with your child about this transition and find ways to help your child be part of the planning for their summer activities.

Plan for summer activities:

  • Look for summer camps and activities offered for children at local libraries and museums. Check your local library for summer reading programs and other activities. The Museum of Life and Science in Durham has wonderful activities for children of all ages and Kidzu is a great place for young children when the weather is too hot in the middle of the day to be outside.
  • Try a summer chore chart and schedule. Decide with your child what chores and responsibilities they will have around the house during the summer.
  • Stay consistent....

WOW! We are so honored to have earned a spot in CreditDonkey's Best Mom Blogs 2017!

"When you need a dose of mom-to-mom advice, check out the winners of the CreditDonkey Best Mom Blogs award..."


My family is blessed. Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s, Harris Teeter, Lowe’s Foods, Weaver Street Market, Amazon even, all of these stores have incredible healthy and delicious options for me to toss into my grocery bag for my family each week. I find myself stressing about weekly meal planning and providing healthy snacks for my constantly snacking toddler. I have never found myself worried about NOT having enough food. Hungry families are living in our community and TABLE is helping. Our monthly Moms on a Mission spotlight is TABLE. This month we have the opportunity to help fill their shelves so that children in Chapel Hill don’t have to worry about where their next meal is coming from.

Since its start in 2008, TABLE started delivering healthy food to 12 local elementary school children each week. During the 2013/2014 School Year: TABLE’s Weekend Meal Backpack Program provided weekly emergency food aid to 226 local hungry children. That’s over 3 tons of food each month! During the 2014/2015 School Year: TABLE expanded its programming to include kids in preschool,...

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A warm meal or a bag of groceries meant the world to me as a new mom. I felt connected to my community when generous friends would text me they had dropped off a few of my favorite foods waiting for me on the doorstep. This sharing of food provided nourishment to my body, but also my spirit.

Making a meal for a new mother is one of my favorite parts of our amazing FIT4MOM community. I love feeling connected to women, some I haven’t yet met, by sharing a bag of groceries. Let’s expand our giving and share a bag of groceries for refugee families recently moved to Chapel Hill.

Refugee Community Partnership (RCP) is hosting a Food Drive THIS Saturday (3/25/17) in Chapel Hill. The mission of the RCP is to improve the lives and protect the rights of people who are immigrants or refugees through educational programs, raising health awareness, and legal aid services in order to promote self-sufficiency and community empowerment.

By definition, a refugee is someone who has been forced to flee his or her country because of persecution, war, or violence. Newly arrived...


It takes a village to raise a child, and Amy Rosso is building that village. Owner and instructor of FIT4MOM Chapel Hill, Amy is building an incredible tribe and community of motherhood through exercise. With everything from Stroller Strides to candlelight yoga, Amy's classes meet the needs and schedules of mothers. The program emphasizes body confidence, community support and strength. Amy's energy is infectious and you may just want to listen to this episode of What We're Made Of on the go.

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One mom shares her experience with FIT4MOM in this Today Show's Parenting Team article.


Lucie's List is a popular "survival guide for new moms" with online resources and informative newsletters. Lucie's List has been featured in The Huffington Post, Pregnancy & Newborn, & US Weekly. In a recent blogpost, they summarize and highlight postpartum fitness options with FIT4MOM programs labeled as "The Sweet Spot". What an honor! Thank you. Lucie's List! Check out the article HERE!

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Mamas, we made it through the summer! Back-to-school time is certainly exciting, but it can also be hectic as schedules shift from laid back summer days to routine school schedules. We asked our moms to share their top two back-to-school tips. We hope these life hacks keep your home running smoothly and your September sanity intact!

  • Have your kids agree on clothes the night before. Set them out in advance. It can also help to set your own clothes out too - one less thing to think about in the morning!
  • Create the practice of "get ready before downstairs". Clothes on, faces washed, and hair & teeth brushed before heading downstairs.
  • Practice getting up and ready on time during the week leading up to school.
  • Make and pack all lunches (including yours!) for the next day while you are making dinner or cleaning up from dinner.
  • "A Sunday well spent brings a week of content." Plan & prep your meals for the week (include snacks and lunches too). Check out or "...
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I’ve struggled to write this post for a long time. I first told Amy Rosso I wanted to write about this important issue back in January. Every month, I would write a few sentences, and then have a little panic attack and stop. So please excuse the grammatical errors, and forgive me if I ramble.

May is National Maternal Mental Health Awareness Month. This encompasses all types of postpartum mental health disorders from postpartum depression and anxiety to postpartum onset bipolar disorder. There is a huge range of mental health issues mothers can face before, during, and after pregnancy. Statistically, one in eight mothers will experience postpartum depression and/or anxiety (PPD) after birth. Unfortunately 15 % will remain undiagnosed. This topic is so near and dear to my heart because I suffered (and still battle) with postpartum depression and anxiety.

I’m not a doctor, nor do I consider myself an expert on the subject of PPD. However, one of the hardest parts for me was feeling like I was alone. The truth is, unless you’ve been through it, it’s very hard...


Mom, what's for dinner?? Now that’s a loaded question if I ever heard one. Give the wrong answer and you could be met with loads of opposition from your kids, trust me, I’ve heard it! “Why don’t you make something that I like?”; “That again, didn’t we just have that?” and my personal favorite “I’m huuunnnggrryy, why is it taking so long?” spoken in the first 5 minutes since you walked in the door. It’s definitely enough to make you want to make a run for the border so you can hear “I’m lovin’ it”.

Hi! My name is Tanya Koziara, and I am a FIT4MOM Chapel Hill Body Back member. And like you, I am busy! I’m married to my wonderful husband and we have 3 children, ages 12, 7 and 5. Both my husband and I work full time and as an added bonus, for 3 months out of the year my husband works 7 days a week during his accounting busy season.

Needless to say, trying to figure out what’s for dinner after walking through the door at 6:30 PM wasn’t working for us. So, in true Tanya fashion, I made a list. Lists keep me on track, and I get...

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As busy moms, we are always looking for ways help simplify daily life. In September, a friend suggested we try prepping crockpot freezer meals. We both had plenty of Pinterest pins with options. My cousin joined our efforts, and the three of us got to work with planning a Crockpot Freezer Meal Session!

We decided to make 4 different meals, and take home 4 bags of each meal. That’s 16 bags of each meal (48 meals in total)! We spent $120 each. We learned a lot from our first session. By the time we did our a second session in December, we made a few changes that helped save time and money. For our second session, we selected 4 meals, made 9 bags of each recipe (36 total), and spent only $100 each. We took home 3 bags of each recipe for a total of 12 meals!

We’ve found this system to be a great way to simplify dinners during our busy weeks. While it takes planning and organizing to get it done, we love having ready-to-go dinner options. Plus, the house smells amazing all day, and we feel like Supermoms! We learned helpful tips and tricks along the way through trial and...

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Motherhood and running are two very important aspects of my life, so I’m excited to share some tips in this blog post! I'm a nurse by trade, but an avid runner. I enjoy running for fun and fitness, and I've been fortunate enough to run 4 marathons: NYC, Chicago, Miami, and Boston. Whether you're a seasoned runner or are just getting started, I'm happy to share my two cents to ensure you're properly geared for a great run!

As mothers, we know there are thousands of baby items out there, but you only need really only need a few of the important ones to make it through. I believe that’s the same with running. There are so many bells and whistles for running gear, but it comes down to some key items:

  1. The right foot support

  2. Supporting "the girls"

  3. Moisture-wicking clothes

  4. A simple watch (added bonus!)

1) The Right Foot Support

Runners tend to be creatures of habit. I'm a prime example. I ran in the same style and size running shoe since I started marathon training 10 years ago....


During the week I work as a Doctor of Physical Therapy specializing in Women’s Health! One area of my clinical expertise is in helping women regain strength, control, and coordination of their pelvic floor muscles. This is particularly important for mothers after carrying and delivering our children! I want everyone to know that it is very common for women to have difficulty with urine leaks and/or pelvic pain; however, this can be easily improved upon and shouldn’t just be accepted as a fact of life!

The pelvic floor muscles can be an elusive bunch because it's hard to feel them moving and working, and they are difficult to see! A pelvic floor contraction, or "kegel", should feel like a gentle squeeze upward and inward at the vagina. If doing this properly, you shouldn't feel your buttocks squeeze, legs move, or stomach holding back your breath. Although these muscles can stop the flow of urine, which may help you figure out how to contract the muscles as you do a kegel squeeze, it is not recommended that you do this urine stop test more than once because it can disrupt...

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If you missed our article in The Produce Box's weekly newsletter, check it out! You'll learn great tips for "Eating Healthy While On-The-Go This Summer"!

We are proudly partnered with The Produce Box, a local company that delivers fresh fruits & vegetables to your doorstep each week. You can also receive local cheese, grass-fed meat, bakery items, & more. Their food comes from local North Carolina farmers carrying high standards of excellence.

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We are so honored to be featured in Chapel Hill Magazine! We love being a part of the Chapel Hill community and are proud to offer quality programs for women at all stages of motherhood. Thank you for the wonderful article!

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Love hearing success stories about what Stroller Strides can do for you physically, mentally, and emotionally. Check out this awesome "How to Lose Over 100 Pounds With Your Kid's Stroller" article shared in this Redbook feature!

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CNN correspondent Kelly Bowman takes a look at FIT4MOM's Stroller Barre class in aired in this great news clip!

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Go Ask Mom highlights FIT4MOM programs and expansion in the Triangle and recognizes the newest franchise: FIT4MOM Chapel Hill!

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I never thought I'd write a blog - or have the courage to own my own business. But with the right support, motherhood can give you wings to achieve the unimaginable. I'm honored and humbled to be a contributor to Mom in the Triangle. Thank you for welcoming me, my family, and FIT4MOM Chapel Hill!I hope you enjoy my first (ever!) blog post: