No More Digging for Straps- My Baby Carseat SideKick Review

We’ve all been there… you place your sweet bundle of joy peacefully into their car seat only to realize that they’re laying on the straps and you now have to dig around to not only locate them, but you have to physically pull them out from under your baby and try your hardest not to upset the volatile little one … multiply the anxiety by 1,000,000 if your baby is asleep and your plan is to keep them that way. temporary 5

My Baby Carseat SideKick is here to solve that problem. Using something as simple (and extremely innovate) as a magnet, you can now easily pull the straps out of the way and get rid of the hassle of digging around.

The system is simple- two magnetic strap covers, two magnetic bells and (two sets of) two plastic clips. That’s it! It’s really that simple.

I’m not going to lie, I was super skeptical and so was Danny. We seriously thought that there was absolutely no way a magnet could effectively hold car seat straps out of the way. I’m pretty ashamed to admit how wrong we were, because truthfully, I have no idea what we would do without our Carseat SideKick now.

Installation was easy, like took literally 5 seconds. The hardest part was figuring out what shape clip would work the best with our car seat.

 

temporary 6We have a BabyTrend 1st Debut  and tried both clips (one is rectangular and one is more oval shaped) and found with our car seat, the more oval one works the best. You simply clip it on to the handle on the sides, velcro the strap covers below the chest clip and you’re done.
Price wise, you’re looking at $22.95, with free shipping over $50. For the quality of the product, this price is spot-on and well worth its weight in gold.

I haven’t had any troubles with the magnets detaching or coming undone and I’ve been able to get G in his car seat and buckle him in with no digging around numerous times. He even stayed asleep a few times.

Seriously, this is a must have product for everyone who has children in car seats, and I can tell you that I have found my go-to baby shower gift for all my friends and family. They offer the product in 3 colors: blue arrows, pink leaves, and yellow chevron. So there is a color for everyone and very neutral patterns. We received the blue arrows and I love the pattern and color.

5 out of 5 from me, but if I could assign a 6th star I would.

Kirstyn

**Burritobuzz received this product free of charge in exchange for an honest review. All opinions are that of my own and no compensation was provided or offered in exchange for a positive review**

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HearMuffs, Protection for Your Little Ones Ears

Us as parents do everything we can to ensure our kids are well protected at all costs. We spend hundreds of dollars on creams, lotions, sunscreens, and ways to protect our sweet kids from germs. But, what about their precious ears?

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Lucid Audio has brought innovation to the market with their new to the market HearMuffs. This headphone style ear protection allows for the protection from exposure to loud noises starting at the audiologist recommended age of “newborn”.

HearMuffs come in 3 different styles, each equipped with the GrowBand, which is a adjustable, washable, soft and comfortable band that allows for the perfect fit. This band is adjustable from newborn until around 4 years of age allowing the HearMuffs to grow with your child for long lasting hearing protection.

The base model, HearMuffs protect young ones ears from loud noises and distractions. HearMuffs Soothe and Sounds offer the same protection with added features. Soothe offers the protection of the base model, but allows for parents to speak to their child without having to pull off the ear muff with the press of a button while Sounds offers the benefits of both the base model and Soothe, but also plays 4 comforting sounds for added help with distractions and soothing and calming children of all ages.

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I do have to admit that this product is pretty great. With a newborn, although he sleeps through just about everything, it gives me the peace of mind that the vacuum cleaner, or hustle and bustle of the grocery store won’t hurt his tiny, developing ears. G didn’t seem to mind them on his head, however, seemed uncomfortable trying to lay down or sleep with them on as they didn’t really allow for him to lay his head to the side.

The option to play the sounds is awesome and the controls are fairly simple to operate. The ear padding is seemingly comfortable and the GrowBand is easy to adjust. For the amount of time they are reasonably used, I think the price point for the Sounds is fairly high.

Overall, I’d give a 4 out of 5 stars. If you have a lifestyle of hustle and bustle where your precious one will be around loud noises continually or constantly, then this is definitely the product for you. If you are a stay at home mom, who makes 1 weekly trip to the grocery store, then the $70 for the top of the line HearMuffs, may be a little drastic, but the base model would be perfect.

You can get $10 off your order using code HEARMUFFS10 until the end of October!

Kirstyn

****BurritoBuzz received this product free of charge for review purposes only. The opinions given in this review are that of our own and in no way have we been provided monetary compensation for guarantee of a positive review****

 

pureWash Pro {Review}

Over the course of the last several weeks, my family and I have been sampling the pureWash Pro distributed by GreenTech. I reached out to pureWash via Twitter because I was curious about their product and its benefits to my household. I, along with the other BurritoBuzz Moms, am always interested in new technology, especially products that can improve the efficiency of my home. Since I contacted pureWash, they have been nothing but easy to work with and it is true with their product as well. I was skeptical of it at first, but it has continued to surprise me!

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What is pureWash Pro?

“pureWash is an environmentally friendly appliance designed to work with your residential washing machine, adding enhanced oxygen and Photo Catalytic Oxidizers to the cold water supply. Water treated by pureWash aids in cleaning laundry and killing bacteria without leaving residual detergent in the fabric.”

How is pureWash installed?

My husband installed our pureWash Pro with ease shortly after we received it. It simply hooks up to the cold water supply that normally runs to your washing machine. We have a traditional top loading washing machine, but pureWash can be installed to any model. pureWash needs to be attached to a secure surface at installation to ensure it remains stable and level for its usage. My husband attached ours to the shelving unit next to our washing machine, using the mounting bracket that was included.

Once pureWash is installed, it’s ready to use! Easy, right? Simply operate your washing machine like you normally would. The only difference with using the pureWash is that you can only use the cold water setting to experience the benefits of the pureWash. “If hot water is used, it dilutes and defeats the effectiveness of the oxidizers that the pureWash has introduced into the wash water.”

Some things we noticed immediately after using pureWash:

  1. The first load of laundry we did with the pureWash was towels. We noticed right away that they felt softer and fluffier than normal. We did not use any detergent and the towels were soft, appeared clean and had a fresh scent. I was anxious to keep washing after that!laundry-basket
  1. I mentioned the fresh, clean scent above. This is true for every single load that is washed, not just that first load of towels. This is the “ozone smell”. I love it. The laundry smells so clean once it’s washed. This is not a smell that can be found in any type of detergent or fabric softener.
  1. The purpose of the pureWash is to use little or no detergent. This is where I was skeptical. Really, no detergent at all? How in the world would anything get clean with just water? But it does. Most often, we have not washed with any detergent using the pureWash. Unbelievably, our laundry is clean with only the cold, oxidized water. “Detergent build-up promotes mold growth and does not kill bacteria. Independent, scientific studies have proven pureWash Pro kills 99.9% of both with cold water.” (Sounds clean to me!) I do appreciate that I can add detergent if I want to. When I wash what I would consider a heavily soiled load of clothes (my nursing work scrubs, for example) I can still add detergent to the machine.
  1. Stains on laundry still need to be pre-treated before washing them using the pureWash. Sure it has worked great, but it’s not a miracle worker. When my kids’ clothes are covered in food or dirt, it’s going to take more than cold water to get those stains out. Once they’re treated with the stain remover you would normally use, simply throw your clothes in and wash like normal.
  1. There is a “Household Water Out” option on the bottom of the pureWash that allows you to use the water for other household cleaning needs. It can be used to clean, water plants, wash pets or rinse fruits and vegetables. I liked this option and plan on taking advantage of it.
  1. With babies and toddlers in my home, we often separate the laundry and use different detergent for the them. This is not necessary with pureWash. It’s so much easier washing everyone’s laundry together and not worrying about my kids breaking out in a rash from soap and detergent. pureWash is “ideal for those who suffer from allergies triggered by bacteria and mold found living in our laundry.”

I think it’s important to note that we use city water and a water softener with our pureWash hook-up. According to pureWash, “it will work with all typical household water qualities, but the better the quality of the water, the better results you will have. If you have hard waterptpa-seal, pureWash recommends a water softener and the removal of chlorine will improve the unit’s performance.” pureWash also recommends consulting a water filtration expert if you have any concerns about the quality of your water (high iron content for example) while using the pureWash.”

Overall, my family gives the pureWash 5 out of 5 stars. I have never seen a product quite like this, but it has surprised me with its ease of installation and use. It’s comforting to know I’m not using tons of chemicals and soap in my family’s laundry and it is still clean. And you know what else, I am saving money! I’m saving money by not using as much detergent and also eliminating the energy waste from washing with hot/warm water.

You can read more about the pureWash here or purchase it through Amazon using this link: pureWash PRO by GreenTech. If you are unhappy with your pureWash after 30 days, they offer a money back guarantee if you are not 100% satisfied with it. Trust me, it’s definitely worth trying and you won’t want to send it back!

Here’s a short video explaining how the pureWash works:

– Megan

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of product review. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Babymoov Lovenest {Review}


Before bringing home baby from the hospital, you’re told that putting baby to sleep on their back is the safest sleeping position. In fact, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends back sleeping for babies newborn to twelve months old. But spending mostBabymoov_logo1 of their time lying on their backs, it can cause a flat head, also known as Plagiocephaly or flat head syndrome. The weight of baby’s head almost always lays in the same position, awake or asleep, which causes the flat head. If baby’s head is found to be too flat, his or her pediatrician may recommend a helmet to round out baby’s head. I’ve had several friends whose children have needed a helmet and they’ve worked wonderfully! But what can you do to prevent the flat head before the need of a helmet?

With over 20 years, Babymoov a comprehensive range called COSY: unique concepts for comfortable sleep and launched the Lovenest, a heart-shaped headrest that prevents flat head syndrome! Created and patented by Pediatrician Dr. Manuel Maidenberg, the Lovenest is the original ergonomic headrest. It’s tilt and special shape guarantee even distribution of pressure across the baby’s skull, thereby preventing the risk of a flat head. Made from bre8914_2athable cotton spandex, the Lovenest is comfortable and adapts to all rockers, bouncers and swing. It can be used from birth, as baby’s head is supported so that its weight is spread out evenly, preventing it from being flattened.

I have been using the Lovenest ever since Babymoov sent their product for me to review about 3 weeks ago and I’m really happy with it. My little one doesn’t mind it one bit, it’s really soft. I do not put it in her crib while asleep, per guidelines set by the American Academy of Pediatrics, as nothing is to be in the crib to prevent the risk of SIDS. When she’s awake playing on the floor under her activity mat or in her mamaRoo, I use the Lovenest to prevent her head from getting flat.

I give this product a 4 out of 5 stars, only because it can’t be used in the crib or bassinet and that is where baby is lying on his or her back the most. But it does work and I think using it outside of the crib when baby is lying down will certainly prevent a flat head which is what parents want in the end. If you or your pediatrician notice baby’s head i8706263294568ms getting a little flat, perhaps give the Lovenest a try to round it back out before it possibly gets worse and a helmet is needed. It’s also available in 3 beautiful colors: red, ivory and taupe and also comes with a lifetime warranty

To learn more and purchase a Lovenest, click here.

Follow Babymoov on Instagram, Twitter and like them on Facebook!

– Casey

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences and we never guarantee a positive review.**

4moms mamaRoo {Review}

Every new mom needs a break. Her arms need a break, she needs a minute to use the bathroom by herself, she needs to be able to put baby down for the sake of her sanity. But baby likes movement. So wimages (3)hen baby is put down in a crib or bassinet the movement stops and baby gets mad. Very mad. So you pick baby back up and there goes your break. That’s where a swing or bouncer comes in. Most babies love the movement of swings and bouncers. But which one will your baby like? My oldest hated the bouncer, which is what we bought first (go figure) so we had to buy a swing which she FullSizeRender (26)ended up loving. With our second baby, we were lucky enough to have been given a 4moms mamaRoo from my husband’s cousin.

The mamaRoo infant seat is amazing! It was designed to move like we, moms and dads, move. It bounces up and down and moves side to side, just like baby likes when being held. The mamaRoo moves in 5 different motions and also has 5 different speeds, so it can move as slow or as fast as baby likes. My 3 month old loves this seat and I wish I had one with my first. It is such a unique seat and is a swing and bouncer all in one. The seat itself can be adjusted to lay almost flat for newborns or almost straight up as baby gets older and wants to look around more. A super plush insert can be purchased separately for newborns which provides them soft and support.The seat fabrics and infant insert are both machine washable.
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Five Motions

  • Kangaroo
  • Car Ride
  • Free Swing
  • Rock-a-Bye
  • Wave

The mamaRoo also features 4 built-in soothing sounds can lull baby to sleep or you can play baby’s favorite songs using the MP3 plug-in or wirelessly through Bluetooth technology. You can even control the mamaRoo using the 4moms app (available for iOS and Android, check if your device is compatible here). How cool is that?! It is available in several colors: classic gray and classic black which have a smooth woven surface and the plush fabrics, designer plush, multi lush and sIlver plush. The infant insert is available in a multi colored fabric and is also reversible. My little one also love the colorful (or black and white, as they are toy_bar_balls__20819.1419193533.386.513reversible) soft balls that hang from the mobile! 

I would give the mamaRoo a 5 out of 5 stars. It has given me my arms back and I have been able to use the bathroom semi-alone (thanks to my toddler) and I have been able to actually eat while my food is semi-hot. Baby loves to sit and listen to the rain (it’s her favorite of the built-in sounds) while bouncing to the Free Swing motion, watching her sister run around like a mad woman in the livingroom. The only issue is the price point. It starts at $239.99 for the classic fabrics and $269.99 for the plush fabrics. It’s a little steep for an infant swing/bouncer and I would also love to see the infant insert included, as it is priced separately at $29.99. Overall, I am thrilled with the mamaRoo. It has saved my sanity more IMG_5054 (1)times than I can count so I do find it worth the money and would have bought one myself had I known how helpful it is!

Purchase your own mamaRoo in classic fabrics here and the plush fabrics here.

Purchase the infant insert here.

Check out 4moms on Instagram and Twitter and on Facebook! Be sure to check out all of the 4moms amazing products here on their website!

-Casey

Levana Ovia {Review}+UPDATE

mamanloupsden_levana-ovia-2-video-monitor-422x318Several weeks back I did a review of the Levana Lila. The Lila was a mediocre product at best. So, Levana sent me a new monitor system to review, the Ovia. This really ranges in price from $150 to easily over $350 depending on how many cameras you get with your system, as well as where you purchase it from. My system came with two cameras.

The system looks nice, and appears much more modern in design than some of the other Levana systems that I’ve seen. Set up was easy. The cameras quickly sync to the monitor, and mounting them to the wall took a matter of minutes. Unfortunately, like the Lila, the cord for the Ovia still isn’t quite long enough to reach the corner of a standard wall without an extension cord.

While the monitor appears to be touch-screen, it unfortunately isn’t and instead operates on a moderately difficult arrow-and-enter button system. The interface is difficult to use, especially in the middle of the night when I’m waking up from a dead-sleep. The features are fairly straight-forward: there is a microphone to speak to your baby, a pan/tilt option, the home button, arrows, and the enter button (which also serves as a 2x zoom.) The home screen offers a few other features, which I’ll talk about below.ovia_lcd.jpg

  1. The Pan/Tilt Feature: Great. I love being able to change the pan/tilt from the monitor. The only down side is that the camera motors aren’t nearly quiet enough for a nursery. I found them to be fairly loud, and my 9 month old is a light sleeper.
  2. The Zoom Feature: A good option to have. I zoom in to check my son’s breathing, but the zoom is only a 2x zoom, so it’s nothing to dote over since there’s no variable zoom.
  3. Music: Definitely my favorite feature of this monitor. There are three song choices that you can turn on from the monitor, and they will play from the camera base. You can also adjust the volume.
  4. Camera/Video Recording: Cool feature, but the quality of the camera is too poor to really matter (getting to that point shortly…)
  5. Wake Mode: One of the best features of Levana monitors is that you can keep the monitor on constantly, or have the screen and sound turn on only for various noise levels in the nursery.
  6. Camera: Shockingly, disappointingly poor. The camera on this is SO bad that sometimes I can hardly make out the outline of a baby in the crib. The clarity is terrible, which seems to be in part because of the camera’s inability to focus and define exposure. There is a ton of noise/pixelation in the photo. I get that it’s a baby monitor and doesn’t need to have perfect definition, but this is worse clarity than you would find on a cell phone from 2004. Essentially, do not expect your picture on your monitor to look like the advertisements…
  7. Camera Switching: The menu interface gives you the option to see one camera, or all cameras (up to 4.) I would prefer to see an easy option for switching cameras on the main-frame instead of having to use the menu or the up arrow button.
  8. Monitor: Sturdy, decent stand, but the interface still leaves much to be desired. And if you’re looking to purchase one of these, it’s important to know that it comes with a power supply, but not with the docking station. (An SD card is already included with the monitor, though.) Also, I found it difficult to see the monitor sitting on my night stand from my bed. The way that the screen is designed, you need to be looking at it square-on to see the picture (much like many PC monitors.) But really, who wants to sit up in the middle of the night to see what their LO is up to? (It’s not me.)
  9. Battery Life: Much better. So far, I’ve used this monitor for several hours with no problem. At night, I leave it plugged in and during the day I usually carry it around.
  10. Wifi: This monitor so far has not interfered with the WiFi signal in my home like the Lila did. Definitely a plus.

The design of this system was good in theory, but really not executed to the extent that it should have been for such a pricey monitor. With a few of the camera issues worked out, moving to a touch screen, and fixing some of the other small issues, I think this would be a much better sell.

UPDATE

After around half a year of owning the Levana Ovia, I’ve had even more difficulties. The exposure has continued to decline. The audio sometimes makes noises. My second camera only displays upside down, and my monitor sometimes shows the picture with the icons on top of it. It constantly cuts out. I contacted Levana, and the customer service isn’t great. They want a deposit to return, as well as the owner of the system to pay shipping costs upfront. After a technician decides whether or not your system is good or not (when it’s blatantly not,) you get your deposit back. Also, they expect you to send your system in before receiving a new one, which makes baby monitoring…well…impossible, unless you own another system. Only after I asked did they offer to send in a new system while I send back the old (with the deposit, of course.) Overall, I’m incredibly shocked at the poor product as well as the poor service. I love a few of my Levana products, but their monitors have consistently disappointed.

-Katie

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences with a product and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Zulily – Unique Products

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I don’t know about the rest of the moms out there, but ever since I became a mommy, I cannot shop like I used to. Before my kiddos, I could enjoy several hours shopping for nothing in particular. There isn’t time for that now. It is the furthest thing from enjoyable to take my kidd out for a few hours of shopping. It also makes me incredibly anxious just thinking about getting them in and out of the car, in and out of the store, and through the parking lot. It is DEFINITELY not my idea of a good time anymore. With that said, I am so thankful for the website Zulily. Because of Zulily, I don’t even miss being able to “get out of the house” to go shopping.

I was a new mom when I first downloaded my Zulily app. I wasn’t shopping for anything specific, I just wanted to browse. I knew that Zulily targeted moms and specialized in unique brands and products. I was curious then, and I have been hooked ever since.

I love Zulily because of the wide variety of products and brand names. Items on their site include anything from shoes, toys, clothing, décor, and household items. Here is a listing of some of their most popular under-armour_416x416photobrands. You’ll see brands like Vera Bradley, Carters, Coach, Graco, Nike, Crocs, Burt’s Bees, and Aden and Anais are amongst the lengthy list. These brands and others open new “shops” of products that start up every morning, so there is always something new to see, which I LOVE. The catch is that these “shops” do not stay open for long. Most often, it’s only 48-72 hours, and then those items are gone; those “shops” are closed.

To me, Zulily is tough to beat. I know they have competitors out there, but they have kept me loyal and coming back. I have bought a variety of items over the last few years including baby items, shoes, kids’ clothes, purses, bathing suits, kitchen gadgets, bed sheets, toys, and magazine subscriptions. They even have personalization with some shops. You really can’t beat their prices either. They advertise their prices to be up to 70% off every day and offer a $15 credit for every new customer you refer. Most often their shipping times are lengthy (10-14 days), but I have gotten used to that. You also aren’t able to return items if you are unhappy with them.

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Overall, Zulily is a great site, especially if you are a busy Mommy like me and crave the shopping you can’t find the time to squeeze in anymore. The app is user friendly and there are always new shops and products to browse. Check it out ASAP – there is something for everyone!

-Megan

 

D-Link Day & Night Wi-Fi Baby Monitor {Review}

This past, week my husband and I decided it was time for our 9 week old to move into her big sister’s bedroom (she has been in our room since birth) and I knew we needed a baby monitor to keep an eye on them. She has been sleeping through the night for about two weeks and we desperately wanted to have our room to ourselves again, my poor husband has been on the couch since she came home! We weren’t concerned aboFullSizeRender (1)ut having a video monitor, as our iPhones and iPad could double as monitors (and it saves money!). We just wanted a good camera that we could hear and see our girls on. We went with the D-Link Day & Night DCS-800L Wi-Fi Baby Monitor and I am so glad! I don’t know much about baby monitors or cameras for that matter, but this one has exceeded my expectations!

First off, it’s small so we attached it to the top corner of my daughter’s crib to where we can see the baby and also my three year old in her bed. The way we set it up in their room up is perfect for the angle we get with the camera. It can be set up wirelessly or plug it in. We opted to just plug it in so we didn’t have to worry about a dead battery but the wireless option is nice so we can use it anywhere. It also has all of the features I wanted in a monitor. The video picture is incredibly clear for a baby monitor. I am pleasantly surprised with the quality. I love that you can snap pictures or take videos right from the live feed. So if your baby or toddler is doing something cute, it automatically saves to your camera roll.

Features:

  • It has 2-way audio so you can sooth baby without going into the room\
  • Infrared night vision, sees up to 16 feet
  • Prerecorded 5 soothing lullabies
  • 4x digital zoom
  • 802.11n wireless lets you place the camera anywhere
  • Motion or sound alerts when baby moves or cries
  • Notifications can be sent to your phone for detected events
  • 3 interchangeable accent rings: yellow, pink and blue
  • H.264 video compression and PCM audio
  • Snap photos or record video live video with app
  • Can be powered by an external USB battery
  • Compatible with iPhone and iPad using iOS 5.1.1 or higher
  • Compatible with Android smartphones and tablets using Android 4.1 or higher

Once you set up the camera, you download D-Link’s free app. It’s easy to do and takes a minute. When your D-Link account is setup, you can access the camera remotely as long as you have wi-fi connection on your tablet or phone and also through the website so you can see baby from any computer, anywhere in the world. The video quality is superb, even at night, so you can always see baby perfectly. The infrared night vision turns on automatically when blinds are drawn or at night. The app offers so much for parents’ peacedlink2 of mind, like movement and sound alerts (that you can also get e-mailed to you) and even if your phone or tablet is locked, you can still hear what is going on which is so important as it won’t kill your battery!

I am so glad we went with this camera. The price is on point as well at $99.99 (I purchased from Kmart but it’s available at many stores or websites). We have had zero complaints and are thrilled that it works so well. There are several different models, some of which have panning capabilities, which is the only feature I now wish this model had but I am very impatient and a local store had this model in stock so I didn’t have to order it online. But overall, I give it 5 stars. I honestly can’t find anything wrong with it!

– Casey

Pacidose {Product Review}

I find it super frustrating as a parent and as a nurse when I have to give little ones medications. Usually, kiddos are already fussy, snotty, and cranky, and then we come along and try to force some nasty medication in them. We cross our fingers and hope they get the proper dose and dread the next time we have to medicate them. This has not been the case with my little experience with the Pacidose. The Pacidose is a product designed to medicate our kiddos using a typical syringe and a pacifier. GENIUS, especially if you have a binky baby.  My kids have both been binky babies, so I think that aided in the success with using this product with them. I think it would work for non-pacifier babies as well.

The Pacidose is easy to use by just drawing up the desired amount of medication through the syringe like you would normally (it also works with syringes other than the one it comes with!). Once the med is 61ENriIl2NL._SX522_drawn up, the syringe just attaches to the binky portion of the product. There is a narrow tube going down the middle of the pacifier that then delivers the liquid med.  According to the Pacidose, this tube “prevents wasted medicine. Medicine is delivered to the back of the tongue, decreasing the chance of rejection.” I found this to be accurate with my 8 month old. He fortunately has not had a lot of experience with taking medications, but he received the whole dose I drew up using the Pacidose. Once he started sucking on the binky, I started to slowly push the plunger of the syringe until he had swallowed all of the medication.

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Here were some other benefits I found with the Pacidose:

          Available in 3 different sizes (0-6 month, 6-18  month, and 18+ month) Although I only sampled the 6-18 month, if I have any more new babies, I will be investing in the smallest size!

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          The pacifier end actually feels like a pacifier! I thought this was important because then it didn’t seem as foreign to my little guy. The package recommended putting the pacifier into another type of liquid (formula, breastmilk) and then giving it to your kiddo so they can get used to the pacifier before you use it with medication.  I think this would be good if your child doesn’t do well with pacifiers.

 

          The syringe is easy to read to ensure you are giving the right amount of medication. I haven’t noticed the markings wearing off at all, but I also have not used the product very much. Hopefully they hold up!

 

          As a nurse, I would LOVE to have something like this to dispense medication to our little ones that come in for surgery. where I work. So often the kids are upset, and they almost always have to take oral medication before and after their procedure. They DO NOT want to take it from me, a total stranger!! This would be great to have in the hospital/doctor’s office setting.

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The only downfall I can think of with this product would be that it is not dishwasher safe. Some reviews I have read talked about the pacifier portion falling apart after only minimal usage. I have not experienced this. I think if the product is taken care of properly (not put through the dishwasher); there won’t be any trouble with this. It seems to be of good quality and very well made.

You can purchase the Pacidose for $12.99 right from their site or from Amazon Prime for $14.99. This might seem like a steep price, but I think it is worth it. This product would also make a fabulous baby gift for new moms and moms-to-be! In my mind, you can’t put a price on making sure your kiddos are healthy and happy and this product does both!

 

-Megan

 

 

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences with a product and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Kizingo Kids Self-Feeding Spoon Review

12011185_178572435809128_5459133675561276659_nTeaching your child to self-feed… easy enough, right? Not usually. It’s a slow process, and often takes teaching over the course of many months. My son is just now 13 months, and started self-feeding quite a bit around 8 months. He has great motor skills at this point to use his pinchers with both hands to grab foods. However, he’s really lacking teeth so he’s still eating a decent amount of pureed food.

I wanted to start getting a spoon in his hand. I know that most littles don’t really “self feed” with a spoon and fork until about 18 months and up, but being proactive never hurt anyone!

12208727_198398983826473_5718110090488828307_nThat’s where the Kizingo spoon comes in. They were kind enough to send me a trial spoon in “kiwi” (the spoon comes in a variety of colors.) The design of this spoon works so well to help babies get the right angle to actually get food into their mouths. I particularly liked that the spoon itself wasn’t a deep spoon, because my LO seems to have some issues getting food off of spoons that have a deep cup.

I started putting things onto the spoon that are thick and would stay on (peanut butter and cream cheese were great for starters.) My son did so much better than I expected! With some coaching, he got this into his mouth a few times on his own. I’m sure he’ll continue to improve as the months go on.

Kizingo Kids uses #whykizingo and explains that self-feeding is essential in helping to avoid childhood obesity. “Of children aged 2-5 years old, nearly 23% are overweight or obese. Among those that are, there is a 60% chance that they will stay overweight or obese throughout childhood, and into adolescence. There is a large and growing body of research that show that the period of time when kids are learning to self-feed – when they are transitioning to solid foods – is a crucial period when food habits are established.” fg

I’ve often wondered if I’m ever under/over-feeding my LO. I really let him guide me in when he’s hungry or had enough, and that seems to have worked well. As he starts self-feeding more and more, he’ll be able to learn his limitations on his own. Having a good tool for him to learn to self-feed will no doubt help this process. A standard straight-handled spoon certainly wouldn’t work as well for him as this curved spoon has.

So thanks to Kizingo for a product that seems very feasible! Can’t wait to see these on the shelves. For now, you can purchase them here.

-Katie

**Burrito Buzz received this product at low or no cost for the purpose of review or testing. No compensation for a positive review was provided. All product reviews are based 100% off of our personal experiences with a product and we never guarantee a positive review.**

Water Wow! {Product Review}

Melissa & Doug have done it again! My oldest received a Water Wow coloring book as a gift when we had her younger brother, and I am still in awe of it! I cannot tell you how many times I have showed this to people who haven’t heard of it or recommended it to fellow mommies out there. It is so great!

 

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If anyone knows my husband, you know that he is not a fan of messes or anything that makes a mess. Things like markers, paint, play dough, etc. are not played with in our house without supervision. We keep all food in the kitchen, take off our shoes at the door, and wash our kids’ hands good after they play outside or eat. That being said, when I discovered this AMAZING toy, I could not wait to get on Amazon and order many more!! Water Wow is a unique toy in that it is basically water color painting, but it can be done over and over and over again in the books that it comes with. All the kiddos have to do is let the pages dry, refill their pen with water, and then do it all over again!!

 

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Pros:

Literally, NO MESS. Unless you’re worried about a little water (and I mean a little) that is the only “mess” that comes along with this toy. We’re even comfortable with our child playing with this on the carpet and furniture because the water stays on the pages and rarely leaks from the pen.

 

The refillable pen is great because . . .

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1. It’s refillable. You don’t have to worry about buying new because it ran out of ink. The two pieces that make up the pen easily screw together so refilling is simple to do and can be done wherever water is available!

2. It can be stored in the plastic compartment on the front cover of the book. This makes it great for taking on trips and ensures it’s not easily lost.

3. I mentioned it rarely leaks. We don’t even take the time to empty it at the end of each use. We haven’t experienced any problems with it leaking when it’s stored on the front of the book.

4. It’s “chunky,” so little ones can easily hold it and use it for fine motor development.

 

 

The book itself is spiral bound and compact. I find this is important because kiddos can carry it around themselves and not lug around a big coloring book and box of crayons. Everything is all together in one little book and they can easily turn the pages as they please.

The pages are durable. You would think that the constant water on these pages would eventually make the pages soggy or warp. I will say that ours has held up great after several months of use. The color is still vibrant on the pages and the spiral binding is still sturdy.

 

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Melissa & Doug offer several options for this product. On Amazon, you can find single activity books for $4.99 and sets of 3 books for $14.99. We’ve also tried out the Water Wow Splash cards with our oldest, and they are equally as awesome. There isn’t a convenient place to store the pen if you don’t keep the box, but the cards can be bound together with a ring which is nice too. These are $9.99 on Amazon.

 

 

It’s a great learning toy for your kiddos. Letters, numbers, colors, animals, are just a few of the book options offered. Not only will your kiddos’ imaginations and creativity be triggered with this toy, their fine motor and writing skills will develop.

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 Cons:

I’m really pulling at strings to come up with something negative to say about this product. My kid loves it. It’s clean, it promotes learning and development, and it can be taken anywhere we go . . . what more could you ask for in a toy?! I think it’d be great if Melissa & Doug came out with a less compact version. This may not be as convenient to take places, but I’m sure my little one would love even larger pictures to paint and play with.

 

We would give this toy 6 out of 5 stars if we could, and it will definitely be a go-to gift for any birthday parties we have in the future. I have a feeling my nearly 3 year old is going to be loving this toy for a few years to come, and I am totally okay with that!!

Another round of applause Melissa & Doug – thanks!

 

-Megan

I Made a Huge Mistake

I did something really stupid this past December. Something I fully regret and I’m here to warn parents so they don’t make the same mistake I made. It may seem harmless and innocent, maybe even a little cute at first but it quickly turns to hate, frustration and bleeding ears (figuratively of course).  In December, I showed my 3 year old some videos on YouTube of Christmas light displays. She loved seeing the lights around the neighborhood at night so I knew she’d love watching them synched with music on the iPad. I was right, she loved them. While looking through the videos, I remembered hearing about these videos of people opening ‘surprise eggs’ that kids loved for some reason and again thought she would get a kick out of them. I searched for ‘surprise eggs’ and a million and one videos popped up. That is where I made my mistake. I opened the door to YouTube for my daughter. I showed her what kind of whacky people are out there in the world and she now happily contributes to their million dollar paychecks. Yes, a few YouTubers make millions from posting videos on YouTube.    So it started with Christmas light displays then I upped the ante to Surprise Egg videos which then exploded into complete obsession with the YouTube Kids app. Sidenote: YouTube has it’s own kids app that I highly recommend rather than using the regular app. You can customize it with what age range of content you’re okay with your child watching, can set a timer and even remove the option of the search bar for older kids. Now back to her obession. There are several YouTube channels that she is completely nuts over. They all vary with toy-related content, but they accomplish the same thing: they annoy the shit out of the parents.    The premise of the videos are to open, unbox and play with different toys on camera, like Play Doh sets or Kinder Eggs, and show all the fun that can be had if you begged your parents hard enough. Companies send the reviewers toys for free because they’re smart. They know if a channel (who gets millions of views) reviews their toys, kids will eat that shit up and get their parents to purchase it. It’s actually completely genius. They’re so happy and inviting, it’s hard not to watch. Some of them are sort of hypnotizing. They suck you right in and soon you’re on Amazon, ordering every Season of Shopkins they have available. For a few of the reviewers, you only get to see their perfectly manicured hands and nails and hear their almost soothing voice, complete with European accent. They are quite mysterious when you don’t see their faces.    Just don’t fall prey. This is a PSA to keep your child(ren) away from YouTube at all costs. Please don’t make the same mistake I did. I’m still paying for it as I’m forced to listen to my daughter whine and cry over wanting watch her ‘videos’ on the iPad on a daily basis. These videos are sort of like crack for toddlers. Just say no

– Casey

“Pee Pee in The Potty, Pee Pee in The Potty”….My not so silent chant.

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I am a mom who likes to do a lot of reading. Pinterest is my best friend during naptime. (So. Many. Resources!) But, I have yet to find a fool-proof way to potty train. I have gotten advice from family and friends (both welcomed and not-so-welcomed), and have read way too many blog posts with step-by-step ways to get it done. I had it in my head that it would be easy! Just a few days and Brava, she would get it!

WRONG!!!!

I read a post titled “Potty Train in 3 Days” HA! I will link it here  if you would like to try it. But my very advanced 18 month old just wasn’t having it! She literally would scream and shake when she had an accident. The poor thing was so scared. 3 days of my precious baby scared and screaming all day. I couldn’t take it anymore. She obviously was not ready despite all the readiness signs { < great article about what doctors want you to know about potty training} she was showing. BK#1 was literally hiding and squatting every time she went in her diaper, and then coming to me and saying “poop”. Like, really kid?!?!? Just go sit on that green froggy potty over there!

Thankfully one of our fellow bloggers has babies just about the same age as me and posted this!  I no longer felt like I was crazy, and alone! I am not the only one shaking my head, and cleaning up pee off of my hardwood floors! Seriously someone, just tell me how you did it! Tell me your secret!

I will tell you their secret!

THERE IS NONE!

Every single child is different! Some kids get it, and some don’t!

There is a fine line of discipline and “I am the parent and we need to do this, whether you like it or not”, and breaking their spirit. I think as a parent that is my greatest fear! We decided to stop potty training, because she obviously wasn’t ready, and I didn’t want to scar her!  photo2.jpg

Discipline is so hard! Every parent has come from different homes, and inevitably has different views and stances, whether you know it or not. You may think you are on the same page about parenting, until you realize that you really might not be. One parent might be a little more patient with scrubbing poopy carpet than the other! THAT IS OK! Just because one of you deal with certain situations better than the other, doesn’t mean that you’re a bad parent, or not doing something right.

So, before you start potty training, sit down with your SO and talk about your expectations for EACH OTHER. I promise, that this will be the best piece of advice you can find when it comes to potty training! If there is more than one adult in the home, you have to agree on what is going to happen, and how you will handle certain situations.

We are now really facing potty training head on now! BK#1 will be 2 next month, and we want her well on her way to no more diapers! And, for the love of God I am sick of changing her tush!

I thought I would share some tips and advice that I have found along the way that seem to be helping us. She is not potty trained yet, and for those of you who did it with your kids in 3 days: I applaud you! It simply has not been that easy with our stubborn one. It is taking a lot of TIME and WORK!

I hope my late night binging on The Mindy Project for sanity and comic relief, and searching for answers helps you, too…

***Except for the first, none of these are in a specific order! Just a list of what we are doing!***

  • First,read   up on your toddler. Know the facts! Know what is going on in their tiny bodies and learn how they work. It will help you, if you completely understand bowl control capabilities, attitude, etc.
  • Demonstrate. From the time that BK#1 could walk she followed me to the bathroom. Annoying as it may be, I let her. They have to see what is going on. It’s even more fun now, because she narrates everything…..

 

  • Gerber Training Pants. photo3 I have found that BK#1 responds to these the best. They are padded and have a plastic layer, so she can wear pants and feels when she goes a little, and then tries to rush to the bathroom. She absolutely hates getting her panties wet! (Still screams and cries when that happens.) I use that to my advantage though! During nap time she tends keep her pull up dry, because I put her panties over top of them. “No pee pee on the panties”

 

  • Panties and Pull ups.  You will see a lot of different opinions on if you should use pull ups or not. We do both. During the day she is just in undies and at nap and bed she has a pull up on. It’s for my sanity really. Am I making it worse? Or am I helping her? Not quite sure of the answer, but it is what works for us. Make a big deal of the panties! Let them pick them, and or pick ones that you know they will be excited about! We don’t do a lot of cartoons/ characters in our house, so shopping for them was kinda hard. But BK#1 is really into shapes lately and we found some pink stars and just simple designs, and she likes those. They make them with every on them lately, seriously! You name the cartoon, there are underwear with the character on it. 

 

  • Potty and Potty seat.photo4

We bought this one and BK#1 loved it! Get the potty well in advance, and let your toddler get all the playing out of their system. Let them play with it, carry it around, put toys in it etc., before you are ready to potty train. That way you wont have a potty full of pee being carried across the house, because they want the potty in the living room….. When you get a seat to go on the actual toilet, get the ones that are one piece! The ones that are a cushion in between plastic get GROSS! This one smells, and you just can’t clean it well, unless you dunk it in bleach. 

  • Flash cards.ABC’s, 123’s, shapes, and colors! It’s a great time to bond and teach! They have to sit still! Take advantage of that one on one time! Again, it’s another distraction so they relax
  • Drinks.I have been doubling her water intake She probably feels a little crazy, but I am trying to keep her bladder full and teaching her what that feeling means!
  • Gate in an easy to clean area.  A lot of accidents happen. A LOT. Just know thaphoto6t going into it. Thankfully we have a bathroom right off the kitchen, so we have been spending a lot of time in there!
  • Use a timer.Pick a small amount of time and set the timer to take your toddler to the bathroom. Whether they go or not. We set one for every 30 min. They have a ton of great apps but we use the Pull Ups app  There is a game to play when they go.

UPDATE: While this app is great, it does freeze and close without any notice, leaving you without a timer! It’s a really nice app, with alot of great features, but they have yet to fix the problem. So, I have just been using it as a potty time game reward.

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  • Lots of apples and fiber. Trying to encourage the need to poo! That takes a lot more time to do on the potty, but I am hoping that if we increase the frequency then it will be easier!
  • Nakey!  If she doesn’t want to put her undies back on, I don’t make her! She tends to just hang out on the potty.
  • Distractions for SiblingsTry and focus as much attention on your training toddler as you can. BK#2 just turned 6 months old and is loving his new walker, and I tend to put him in that if we have to spend more than a few seconds in the bathroom. Know your littles are safe. Older kids? Maybe get some new craft supplies, let them help you potty train, grandparents’ house for a few days? Try not to let them feel forgotten, even though a lot of their time will be taken away.
  • Stop training if they get a rash. This piece of advice is straight from our pediatrician. You don’t want them to associate pain with going potty. Unfortunately BK#1 was allergic to the pull ups we were using at nap time, and had a HORRIBLE reaction! We had to switch brands, but until her diaper area cleared up we had to put a halt to the potty. There is no way to keep on cream and keep it clean while naked or in undies.
  • Consistency! No matter what you do, stay consistent. Communicate the plan to your toddler, your spouse, grandparents, sitters etc. Don’t deviate! I feel like BK#1 is getting it, but has accidents when we wait too long, or go somewhere etc.

We are still working hard at it, but hope that this plan will lead to success. Don’t lose faith! You have a smart and adorable toddler and they won’t be going to college in their diaper.

~Amanda

 

 

 

 

VTech Sit-to-Stand Learning Walker {Product Review}

I forgot how amazing this toy was until I got it back out for baby #2. It costs $29.88 on Amazon and it is absolutely worth every penny.

I love the versatility of this thing. My little guy is sitting up on his own now, so I can remove the front panel and he can sit and play with it. Once he does start to pull himself up to stand he can use it and then he will be off and running (hopefully walking first!) Amazon advertises the item to be “meant for babies and toddlers 9 months to 3 years old.” I guess my kiddos will be starting to fight over this one!

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Here are some other cool features:

  1. Wheels – I think it’s super important to note that this walker will move well on hard and carpeted flooring. We have both in our home, and I remember thinking how awesome this was with my daughter when she would walk with it. There are also adjustments on the rear wheels to add more tension so the walker will move slower. I noticed this helped especially when my daughter was a rookie walker.

 

 

  1. Noise – this has everything from songs, short phrases, sounds, and music. This walker has a wide variety. On Amazon, it is advertised at having “over 70” different sound effects and songs. I never kept track, but I will say it is not one of the loud annoying toys I wish I could throw out!

 

 

  1. Modes – The walker features 2 separate modes. One being a musical mode and the other a learning mode. I didn’t think I would really care that much about this feature, but I will say as my oldest grew, I found that we would use the music mode less and learning mode more because she could listen and understand.

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  1. Phone – My oldest loved the phone on the walker. It’s removable and makes sound effects to play along. It was the first thing she went for when I got it back out for my youngest and she is going to be 3 soon!

 

 

  1. Activities – Along with the phone, there are several other activities on this walker that are in a farm theme. Rollers, gear spinners, removable shape sorters, light-up buttons, and piano keys are amongst the different items on the walker encouraging hours of play time and learning. Your little ones will be learning shapes, animals, colors, and songs as they play along. As your kiddos start to walk with the walker, it is actually motion-activated, so the panel will still be playing sounds and music as they are on the go.
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  1. Assembly – If I remember correctly, it was super easy to put together and batteries were included. It also is available in a pink version for the same price on Amazon. Can’t beat that! Everything is in bright colors and assembled well. We haven’t had any issues with stickers coming off or anything breaking on the walker.

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I can honestly say that I can’t think of anything I don’t like about this toy. Some of the reviews I read before choosing this one talked about it being too light and tipping; my kids have not had this problem. I can’t say that my daughter never fell when she pushed it, but it was usually just because she was new to walking and it was never anything serious.

I think it’s a great buy for the cost and I’m excited to use it again for my second kiddo. If your little one has a first birthday coming up, I highly recommend this item!! Good job, VTech!

 

-Megan

Raising the Plugged-In Generation

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How many times have you heard the following phrases:

“Don’t let them watch too much television, it’ll rot their minds”

“Those video games, they’ll make him violent!”

“You never know what they’re looking at on the internet…”

“Why would she need a phone? She’s a child.”

I saw this Dateline 20/20 Nightline whatever episode recently that said “we” (me and you, current parents of small children) are raising the “Plugged-In Generation.” And it’s this horrible, scary thing where our kids are ruled by technology, and their minds really are mush and they’re doomed to be socially inept their entire lives because computers and smart phones will do everything for them. Okkkk….

So then I visited a mom friend the other day that told me that they have their television on for a total of 30 minutes a day. THIRTY. I found this out when naptime was approaching for the kids so I turned on a quiet cartoon, went to the bathroom, came back and the tv was off. Alrighty then.

Is it true? Is all the technology of today still rot-your-brains-out horrible? I’m not so sure.

Call me Mom of the Year, but my tv is rarely off. Sorry Mom Friend, but I think you’re a little nuts. But I also don’t want my kid to only speak in Jake the Pirate lingo and not be able to function outside of a computer screen…image

And when I say my tv is on all day, listen, I’m a stay at home, military mom. My DH is in and out constantly and I just can’t be in a house alone with my LO, sitting in silence all day. But that also doesn’t mean I park her in front of the tube and she sits in zombie mode for hours on end. In the mornings, we snuggle and watch a few episodes of Curious George. And then she’s off. Sometimes its a cute, toddler-appropriate cartoon in the background, sometimes it’s the Disney Pandora station. But my tv is on for the majority of the day for the simple purpose of background noise.

So besides my tv always being on, what other brain-rotting sins do I commit? Well I have a Fisher Price app on my tablet that she loves to play and if she could figure out Facetime on my phone, I’m sure she’d call my sister 37 times a day.

I’m a little conflicted here. I’m not a doctor or a scientist. Just a sahm, shrink in training (read: grad student in Professional Counseling), trying to make the best, most practical choices I can for my kid. So here’s my opinion:

1. Cartoons aren’t what they used to be. When we were little, it was Rugrats, Scooby Doo and Wiley Coyote being blown up by a bird. Now, my child has a ridiculous amount of educational shows to choose from. And they really are educational. Daniel Tiger learns how to share, Curious George does odd jobs to buy a kite, and Sofia the First deals with bullies. These are life lessons, in bold colors, with catchy songs that kids remember.

2. Use technology to your advantage. Sure, as your children get older they’re going to learn that there is a world of opportunity available out there on the internet. So be smart. Use the parental settings on your smart phones, your cable and your internet plans. Block what you don’t want them to have access to, give them kid-safe technology like a Leap Pad. As they get older, regulate who they can and cannot contact on their phones. Technology is expanding every minute but that doesn’t mean you have to be an ignorant parent. Stay up to date and monitor what you child, at any age, has access to.

3. Be safe. Get your middle schooler a phone if you want. Shoot, get your elementary schooler a phone. Give them text and call services and teach them that this is for emergencies only. Sure they may text their friends when you turn your back, but this isn’t a Mayberry,-leave-your-doors-unlocked kind of world anymore. My child having a way to contact me should there be, God forbid, some horrible event happening at their school or just some creeper near the bus stop, gives me peace of mind. It’s a safety measure I think is necessary here in 2015.

 4. Teach them OTHER things. Start young. Have scheduled play time OUTSIDE, every day if possible. Read to them. Read in front of them. Instill in them a joy of reading, crafts, music, couch-fort building and imaginary tea parties as soon as you can. The more you encourage non-technology related activities and make them appealing to your children, the less they’ll even care about watching Frozen for the 94th time this week.

Promoting the fun in other activities will also help avoid that feeling that they are addicted to technology. It can be helpful to reward positive behavior in your children, especially when they are toddlers. But constantly using your own personal phone or tablet as a reward WILL turn around and bite you when you eventually need to take it away, resulting in that dreaded inconsolable tantrum in the middle of Walmart that we all love. Try stickers or a musical toy, something fun they don’t always have access to as an incentive for good behavior.

If you want them to have “app time” during the day, schedule it into your routine. This way, they’ll know when to expect time on the tablet and won’t demand it at random moments throughout the day. Routine works!!!

5. Lead by example. The phone/tablet/laptop/smart watch…whatever…put it away. Don’t text and drive. Don’t check emails at dinner. EAT DINNER AT THE TABLE. Talk to your kids, no matter how young they are. I’m a student and I write for this super awesome blog so I suppose you could say I “work from home.” My child sees me use technology often. But I make technology-free time for her all day long. When you’re interacting with your child, be present. Listen when they have something to say. Set the example that you want them to follow.

I really don’t care how many hours a day my television is on. I’ll give my kid a tablet to play an age-appropriate app every now and then. What’s important is that technology doesn’t rule her life. I’m teaching my child how to speak politely to adults, the importance of fitness and a love of several different hobbies that don’t involve a keyboard or remote.

In the right context, technology can be so beneficial for children of all ages. We need to be forward-thinking parents. We need to not be ignorant to changing technology and current safety precautions. Keep up with your kids, stay current in their lives, and set the example you want them to follow. Technology isn’t the enemy, poor parenting is. We can’t protect them from everything, but we can guide them toward becoming successful, intelligent, social human beings that don’t have carpel tunnel from video games, but instead understand the value of new, evolving sciences that will shape their tomorrow.

-Chelsea

 

 

Graco DuetSoothe Swing and Rocker Product Review

untitled (6)Pros: BK#1 LOVED, LOVED, LOVED this swing! I mean it was the only way I could get her to sleep in the first few months of life. Between colic and being a new mom this thing was a God send! (BK#2 Likes it, but doesn’t seem to fall asleep as easily in it.) It has 6 swing speeds, which is really nice because when they get up there in weight you need a swing with a little more umph.(This swing has a 30lb weight limit!) Multiple songs on the music setting, and multiple noises on the soothe setting (birds, heartbeat, water, and white noise). images (2)The seat itself can adjust to 3 different incline positions, and you can also turn the direction that the seat swings! Which was fabulous for our little apartment we were in at first with BK#1. My favorite part of this swing, that most swings don’t have, is the plug-in option! I hate buying batteries! Can’t stand it, and charging batteries is just as annoying. My second favorite part is that it is not only a swing, but also a bouncer. This was extremely convenient when the baby is sleeping and you want to take them with you into another room! Just lift and go, it was fabulous!

untitled (7)Cons: Did you see that there….was fabulous. Last night as I went to place my sleeping infant in the swing, and I found that the swing wasn’t working! The power light turned on, and the music worked, but the swing wouldn’t move. The motor had burned up. I called the company this morning and because I don’t have the paperwork etc. from purchase, and it is barely over the one year warranty mark, there is nothing they can do! Even though they admitted that it was a product defect. It was a shower gift, so of course I don’t have the paperwork a year later! (I registered at Babiesrus and it was purchased there) That is beside the point, a swing should last over year. If this swing hadn’t died on me I would be telling everyone to go buy a dozen of them! We seriously loved it! Sad, sad day! The swing is fairly large, so some people might not like it, but it worked well for us. Also, the vibration on the seat was pretty noisy and might wake a sleeping baby, or prevent sleep.

Overall, I was a little let down. Being a huge Graco fan, I expected the usual high quality product. This did not meet my expectations. Hopefully the company fixes the defect for future products!

~Amanda

BabyConnect App Review

After having my son, I was quickly sent home from the hospital. I was tired, had no idea what I was doing, and (honestly) in a fair amount of pain. My nights and days started to blur together, and I couldn’t keep anything straight. I didn’t know when I had last fed my baby, diapered, etc. because in those wee hours of the night, 12AM feels like 2AM feels like 4AM. I would wake up at times and think it had been 5 minutes, and couldn’t remember if he ate an hour ago or two or if he literally had just eaten and was wanting something else. I had started writing things down in a journal, but once I went back to work I needed a better and easier method for my caretaker (my mom,) and my husband to know who did what last and what our guy currently needed. 

I searched the app store, and found several different free versions. None did what I wanted fully, until I found BabyConnect.

babyconnectI’ve been using this app for 6 months or more now, and I use it all day every single day. It’s so comprehensive, and while it costs $4.99 in the app store, it’s worth every penny. We bought it three times over, before finding out that you can make the purchase once and have it on multiple devices. Even then, it is worth the $15 we ended up spending. 

BabyConnect allows you to quickly and easily track nursing, bottles, diapers, medications, milestones, vaccinations, and SO much more. And, there are graphing features that will tell you the intervals in which your child is eating, how many ounces a day/week, as well as how many diapers you’re going through any given day. I have mine on the “recent entries” view, so I can FotoFlexer_Photo1look at how his day has progressed to see if he currently has any feeding/diapering needs (which comes in particularly handy when I pick him up from my mom’s house not knowing when he last ate.)

As much as I hate to say that I track nearly everything, I really do. If you have several people caring for your child, as I do, it’s important for everyone to be on the same page without too much effort.

I look back at my paper journal now and laugh, because I would write down stats in the wee hours of the morning, and my writing would be so terrible that I couldn’t even read it when I needed to know what it said. Thankfully, with the app you just have a few button clicks to record what’s going on.

What’s even better? You can change your home screen to only display the features you’re using. Nothing is more frustrating than having to sort through icons when you’re exhausted.

FotoFlexer_Photo2The app syncs automatically as soon as someone adds an updated event. I’ve never had any issues with the sync feature, but if you do it’s easy to force it to sync by hitting the refresh button on the lower right side of the screen.

Favorite features:

-App will tell you what percentile your little one is in when you record their height or weight.

-Complete customization. If you don’t like the wording in some portion of the app, you can change it to your own.

-I love being able to leave little notes in there for the next person to look at (my mom, who would leave notes like “Gram loves Lucas”)

-If you record something incorrectly, you can change it at any point.

-Vaccination schedule: I’ve added in most vaccines that my LO has received, because they get SO many that it’s easy to lose track.

-If you’re dealing with a medical issue, you can tell the app to generate an email with information to send over to your doctor (our LO had severe reflux for many months, so we tracked his medications and could quickly pull them up for our pediatrician.)FotoFlexer_Photo3

You can read about some of the other features here.

Overall, I give this app a five-star rating. There is nothing as comprehensive (that I’ve found so far.)

So to the developers of this app: thank you for creating something so parent-friendly! It’s such a great resource and I fully intend to continue to use it at least until my guy is a year old.

Hope you get some use out of this great technology, parents & care-takers!

-Katie