Akron Children’s Museum. Cabin Fever No More.

1017541_582065261846428_877869030_nHere in Ohio its winter. Well, I think? It’s currently 50 and raining, so not the normal -15 F and a snowstorm, but still pretty gross. My kids are bouncing off the walls lately and I have been searching for something new for them to do! I know not everyone is close to Akron, Ohio, but if you are or ever find yourself near here,  this place is the solution! Akron Children’s Museum is more like a huge discovery playhouse than a “museum”. Don’t let their name fool you.

IT’S AWESOME!! So much thought was put into this and they aren’t even done yet. Some of you might have seen me try and go live Thursday morning, but Facebook/Verizon was NOT cooperating. You can see the general lay-out though ,and get an idea of what it looks like, even though  Facebook kept cutting in and out a lot.

Akron Children’s Museum’s mission is to be a gathering place for children and families, where play inspires exploration, discovery, and problem solving. ACM envisions a community shaped by lifelong learners, who provide innovative leadership inspired by creativity and diverse perspectives.

Beyond the museums exhibits  they have a calendar of events and activities booked full of fun things to get involved in! Things like little kids yoga, theater games, art studio and much more.

Not only are there awesome and educational exhibits, but they really went above and beyond to think about parents and families. There is a whole area to park strollers and hang coats. If you are a nursing mom or have a child that needs some quiet time there is a quiet room that has dim lighting and a few comfy chairs! 

The museum is located at 216 S. Main St. in downtown Akron, Ohio next to Lock 3 Park.
You can park in the State Street Parking Deck located at 52 W. State St. (behind Barley House). Take the elevator to the ground level, take a right to go outside, and doors to the museum are straight ahead. Out of the elevators you will be right inside of Lock 3. There are plenty of signs showing you the way to the entrance.img_2622

Open Tuesdays- Sundays 10am-6pm

$5 for kids and adults (infants 12-months and under free)

Annual memberships start at just $55 and include free parking.

If you have a family of 4 all requiring admission, the annual membership would pay for itself in 2.5 visits! With the ever changing calendar of events and their additions and continuing to build, it would be well worth it!

My kids and I LOVED Akron Children’s Museum! We will be returning! The only suggestion I have is a little more security. I was very thankful to have someone with me, but if I was alone with two children I would have been very concerned. It is a very open layout and a child could run off or be misplaced fairly quickly. I would love to see a few staff people just walking the floor with the sole purpose of keeping an eye out. The staffers that were around were cleaning and then running back into closets and to the desk to fulfill other duties.  The museum is  wesome, and we were very excited to return, but definitely with daddy or a grandparent to help wrangle those quick toddlers!

Be sure to Check out their website here for more information and to follow them on Facebook to stay up to date on all the awesome things they are doing for the community!   ~Amanda

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Minivan Mama

I officially gained my “soccer mom” status this summer when we traded in my little blue SUV for a MINIVAN. And let me tell you, it was one of the best decisions I have ever made!! It’s true love. I knew I 17194_600always wanted a minivan someday, because I grew up with my parents always having one, and it always just seemed like the most practical with kiddos. What I didn’t know is how much I would not miss my old car and absolutely love this van!

My husband I had been talking about them for a while and finally buckled down and started researching them after we had our second child. We were tired of not having a lot of room in the car especially if we needed to take any extra people anywhere. Two car seats take up a lot of space. We looked at several minivans on the market, but narrowed it down to the Toyota and Honda. We did have a rental Chrysler that we were happy with as well. After test driving, we were actually surprised at how easy the decision was with the Honda Odyssey. The vans were priced roughly the same, but the Honda just felt like it was made better. We didn’t dislike the Toyota (my hubby drives a Toyota Tundra), but the Honda was just better.

 

 

We waited several weeks for the specific model and color to come in that we wanted, but once it arrived, it was love at first sight. I was so anxious and excited that Saturday morning we were able to go and pick it up with the kids. Our 3 year old was excited for the “new van!” too. It was bittersweet leaving our old SUV, but there are new reasons every day why I am so thankful to be a minivan mama now . . .

Here’s a few of them . . .

1.       The automatic sliding side doors… need I say more?! I don’t have to worry about my kids or I banging any cars parked next to us with our doors. You know how loading and unloading our kiddos goes, these door make it a dream come true!! Because of the sliding doors, the opening is so much bigger than an average car door – WONDERFUL! The doors also open and close by the simple push of a button from either the key fob, by the driver’s seat, or on the inside of the sliding doors themselves.

 

2.       Not only is there more room in the doorways, there’s more room EVERYWHERE in this car. I can honestly say I’ve been a passenger in every seat and never once did I feel like I had no space to move. And if you need more room . . . You can MAKE more room . . .

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3.       . . . You can make that extra space because of the movable seats. I know this is typical with most minivans and vehicles with a third row of seats, but the way the Honda was set up was another big selling point for me. Our Odyssey has the option to have an eighth seat. All of the seats are removable (except the front), but with the Odyssey you can have an eighth seat in the middle of the second row. You can easily remove that middle seat of the second row to have 2 captains chairs and an aisle way to the back row, or you can leave it in place to complete the row and have an extra seat. The seat also folds down as an arm rest if it’s left in place. The third row of seats EASILY folds down into the trunk of the van. When we drove to the beach this summer, we opted to fold the third row down so we had TONS of room for luggage and could still see out the back window.

 

4.       Handles on the high way – We drove the minivan on the West Virginia turnpike on our way to Myrtle Beach this past summer, and it handled so much better than my husband’s truck the year before. We could set the cruise control and not have to waver and hit the brake on those winding highway turns.

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5.       Good on gas – I know the gas tank in the minivan is bigger than my tank was in my SUV, but I swear still that the van gets better gas mileage. According to Honda, the Odyssey gets 19 mpg on city streets and 27 mpg highway. Either way, its way better on gas than a huge SUV would be!

 

6.        Does NOT ride like a bus – I traded in a small SUV for my minivan. I had driven it for 5 years. I will say that I was the most anxious that the minivan was going to feel like I was driving a bus after driving my little SUV. I was so wrong. The van does not feel any bigger to me. I would say it sits up off the road the same height as my old car. Even though the van is significantly longer, I really haven’t noticed other than making sure I pull in the garage far enough. The back-up camera has made this easier as well!

 

7.       Bang for the Buck – I’m telling you, you cannot beat a minivan. Even if you have a small family like we do, it is worth considering. For some reason, they get a bad rap, but I can’t think of one negative thing to say about mine. Maybe I don’t look the “coolest” driving the minivan around, but that is the last thing I’m worried about. Most companies offer all the bells and whistles you can find in luxury cars and SUVs, so don’t think those options aren’t available in a van. It’s convenient, affordable, and I know my kids are safe – that’s what matters to me.

If you’re thinking about getting a new vehicle for your new family, growing family, or just want more seats/space, take a look at a minivan. Check out all the options. Take them for a test drive. I think you’ll love it! And if you take the plunge like we did and buy one, you won’t regret it!

-Megan

 

GeoSphere from GeoSmart {Review + Giveaway}

My daughter loves to build (and demolish) things. She loves Legos, blocks, anything that she can stack on top of each other until it’s taller than her, she loves. My brother, cousins, and I would play Legos for hours, so I share her love of building, too. But there are so many new construction toys on the market today that I would have killed to have when I was younger. One of those toys is GeoSmart, a magnetic construction toy, that is out of this world! I recently got the chance to review one of the GeoSmart sets and the whole family is in love with this amazing toy!

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GeoSmart is a magnetic construction toy for children ages 5 and older (my daughter is 4 and she had no problem building with them). Each piece contains magnets that are protected by a double safety system, so the magnets can’t fall off. A stainless steel covers the strong magnets and locked onto an ABS core, which is then covered by durable polycarbonate housing. This new patented system makes GeoSmart a safer and stronger toy that offers a long lifetime and are super easy to clean. GeoSmart offers several different shapes in 9 bright and colorful colors. You can use squares, triangles, diamonds, rectangles, isosceles triangles, and trapezoids to create endless combinations and let yourgeo_geosphere3_construction imagination run wild. Some sets come with unique pieces like wheels, lights, or remote controls so playtime is limitless! Some of the special elements Geosmart offers are:

  • Spinner: add motion to a simple construction. The spinner easily clicks onto every square piece.
  • Wheels: use your imagination and build cars with 4 wheels or 6 wheels
  • Tracks: build trucks with tracks!
  • Train connectors: build trailers you can easily connect to your vehicle and drive it around.
  • LED-Lights: light up your construction with one of the 6 LED colors. The panels easily click onto the squares.
  • Remote Control: drive around with your vehicle or make your construction spin automatically.

We received the GeoSphere set that comes with 31 pieces, including one spinner, 12 triangles, and 18 squares. Each set also comes with a book with structures you can build or you can build something original. They’re incredibly easy to build with and fun for everyone. My husband and I like to help our little one build more complex structures to get her little brain thinking. GeoSmart helps with spatial insight, hand-eye coordination, concentration, logical thinking, and allows kids to be creative. There are a lot of awesome sets to chose from, make sure you check them all out here and  they can be purchased here on Amazon! I give GeoSmart 5 out of 5 stars.10491878_4 The sets are so fun and keeps my little one engaged. I will definitely be buying more sets this coming holiday season. GeoSmart sets make a great gifts for all the kids in your life!

We love GeoSmart so much, we’ve teamed up for a giveaway! One lucky winner will win a Solar Spinner set from GeoSmart! Follow these quick and easy steps to enter:

  1. Follow both @BurritoBuzz and @GeoSmartUSA on Instagram.
  2. Like the Solar Spinner giveaway post.
  3. Tag friends you think would like to win, too!
  4. That’s it!

The giveaway begins Monday, November 21st at 12pm EST and ends Wednesday, November 23rd at 12pm EST. The winner will be announced on the original giveaway post within 24 hours. Goodluck! **This giveaway is not sponsored or endorsed by Instagram.**

Don’t forget to follow GeoSmart on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and Instagram to stay up to date on new products and sales! _ppxu2zz

– 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.**

Bluebee Pals {Review + Giveaway}

Technology is everywhere and sadly unavoidable for the most part. With cell phones, tablets, computers, TV, and game systems at easily available at home and tablets andgroupshot computers now apart of the curriculum at most schools, screens seem to always be in children’s’ faces. But what if a product that can be used with said technology can help help educate  our little ones? I was recently given the opportunity to review an amazing product called Bluebee Pals from Kayle Concepts that combines state of the art technology and traditional plush toys.

Bluebee Pals come in 6 animal styles; Riley the Zebra, Leo the Lion, Hudson the Puppy, Lily the Lamb, Sammy the Bear, and Parker the Monkey so kids can pick their favorite animal to adopt. They are geared for children 3-8 years old but can of course be a lifetime pal to your child! Bluebee Pals use Bluetooth Technology to sync to any iOS and Android device. They can even be used a a hands-free phone with a built in microphone and speaker! riley-the-zebra-pro-510x510Each of the plush stuffed animals has a mesmerizing feature – lip synchronization – that allows the pal’s lips to move as it sings or reads from various apps.

My daughter chose Riley the Zebra and she loves her! She’s incredibly soft, even though she has a rechargeable battery stuffed inside. Hooking Riley up to our iPad was quick and easy. I downloaded several learning and singing apps, but the ones that read stories are my daughter’s favorite. Riley’s mouth moves and “reads” to her, she thinks it’s so cool! Simply prop a phone, laptop, or tablet on the pal’s lap and tuck it into their plush arms. Pal’s work with any app that has sound, including foreign language apps! Check out this video to see one in action!

Bluebee Pals are so fun and innovative, that’s why thousands have been adopted into households, schools, and therapy sessions. Pals  offer so many benefits, including auditory attention and processing, cause and effect, pre-literacy skills, and more. To date, the toy industry has given Bluebee Pals 6 awards, including Mom’s Choice, National Parentingspecial-needs Publications, Parent’s Choice, Creative Child Award, Academic Choice, and Tillywig, they were just listed as #1 on the list of products that impressed STEM Education at International Society for Technology in Education Conference 2016. I also think Bluebee Pals would be beneficial for children on the Autism spectrum, to help with language and communication. Get your little one his or her own award-winning Bluebee Pal here, at Target, or on Amazon for $64.99!

Here are a few links to recommended educational apps from the Bluebee Pals website, but be sure to visit their site to see all of the recommended apps:

Would you like to win a Bluebee pal of your own? You’re in luck! One winner will get to adopt a Bluebee Pal of his or her choice! Just follow these easy steps to enter:

  1. Like @burritobuzz and @bluebeepals on Instagram
  2. Like the giveaway post.
  3. Tag friends (one per comment) that you think would like to win, too!
  4. That’s it!

bluebee_palsThe giveaway will start Saturday, November 12th at 12pm and end Monday, November 14th at 12pm. The winner will be randomly chosen and announced within 24 hours. Goodluck! **This giveaway is no way sponsored or endorsed by Instagram.**

Don’t forget to follow Bluebee Pals on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest for updates, new products, and sales!

– 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.**

 

Magnutto Make a Mood {Review}

2016-NAPPA-Seal1.pngKids don’t know how to deal with their emotions. That’s why they throw tantrums when they don’t get what they want or hit when they don’t get their way. Their little brains aren’t capable of knowing how to respond as an adult would and we all know how frustrating it can be for both the parents and child. My four year old can throw a tantrum with the best of them and she’s perfected her on-the-ground-kicking-and-screaming meltdown. We’ve been trying to work on talking through our feelings rather than just crying and screaming, and it’s been helping. So when I got the chance to reva2216xx_mj_makeamood_pkg2_apr-20-16_hires300dpiiew Neat-Oh! International’s Magnutto Make a Mood magnetic toy, I was so excited to see if it helped my little one learn emotions and moods and how to express them.

Magnutto Make a Mood is designed to help identify, express, and respond to feeling and emotions and so far, it’s doing a great job with my daughter. She uses the thick, foam magnets to create facial expressions. The sturdy box opens to a magnetic easel and closes to store all the magnets. Activity cards (in 3 languages – English, Spanish, and French) are included in the box to role play and a list of example facial expressions. I love that I can ask questions about emotions and really engage my daugher in conversation about how she’s feeling.15774830612f9b

Features

  • Includes 100+ magnets, two activity cards, and easel box.
  • Sturdy easel box opens to a magnetic easel and closes to store all the magnets when play is done
  • Educational role play suggested activities included
  • Low strength, safe, thick foam magnets.
  • Fully Printed
  • Tested to the most stringent quality and safety standard
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5″ x 8″ x 1.75″

My daughter and I have been having lots of fun talking about our emotions and making expressions together. I’ll even make a face and ask her to make a face out of the magnets, 1-1it always comes out pretty silly! Make a Mood isn’t just about emotions, I like to think it’s like a “paper doll” but for the face. There are different eyes and eye color, hair colors, earrings, noses, mouths, glasses, and more, so you can make make lots of faces and expressions. Magnutto also offers Make a Pet and Make a Dino sets, so you can  animals and dinosaurs! The quality is outstanding and the foam pieces will hold up even with the roughest of kids. Shop all Magnutto sets here. Your little ones will love these engaging and fun sets!

The Magnutto sets have also been given Oppenheim Toy Portfolio’s Platinum Seal, which is the highest honor given by the independent consumer organization! They were also honored with a SNAP award (Special NeA2216XX Magnutto MakeAMood PROD Dec-11-2015eds Adaptable Product), given to products that can be used by or easily adapted for children with special needs.

Be sure to follow Neat-Oh! on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter for new products and sales!

– 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.**

Lime and Lotus Organics: Daily Face Cream {REVIEW}

I’ve never been one to use a lot of products on my skin, let alone my face, but that doesn’t mean that I don’t  think it’s important to take care of it (especially when you’re young) so it looks good when you age! With that said, I was intrigued when I read about Lime and Lotus Organics and their signature Daily Face Cream. So many products nowadays are filled with harmful chemicals and added junk, it’s a wonder they are even allowed to be sold. It’s scary to think about some of the things we put in our bodies, and even though it’s “just our skin,” it is equally as important what we are putting on it because our bodies absorb it!

 

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Lime and Lotus Organics prize themselves on their high standards and pure products using only natural ingredients. A holistic doctor created Lime and Lotus. Her hope was to design products for both her patients and family that were not filled with harmful chemicals. She did it. The products made are free from synthetic chemicals, paraben preservatives, petrochemicals, phthalates, and artificial colors and fragrances of any kind.

 

I was able to sample the Daily Face Cream from Lime and Lotus Organics which uses “Shea Butter, Evening Primrose Oil, and Virgin Coconut Oil to hydrate and soothe your skin while ingredients like Organic Jojoba Oil, Vitamin E Oil, and 3444Bulgarian Damask Rose Wax help to reduce wrinkles, age spots, and lines.”  I have not used the product long enough to note any real improvements in my complexion, but I have been mostly happy with the product so far! The scent is light and refreshing with the primrose coming through which I enjoyed. Only a very small amount was needed with each use, and it was very hydrating. I’m talking hydrating to the point where my skin remained looking and feeling oily even with the small amount and rubbing it in thoroughly. I only ended up applying the cream once a day (instead of the recommended two times a day) due to the oily/over-hydrating aspect. I will say though that when I applied the cream after showering at night before bed, I noted my skin feeling silky smooth and looking fresh when I woke up the next morning. The oily glow and texture were gone.

 

Application of the product is super simple – Warm up a small amount of cream between your fingertips and then gently apply

 

 

 

 Lime and Lotus Organics packages their Daily Face Cream in small glass jars, which means they are BPA free! They also offer and 60-day money back guarantee if you are not satisfied with their product. Please visit their website to read more about their products, mission, and to purchase your very own Daily Face Cream. It is also available on Amazon – Daily Face Cream.

 

You can also follow Lime and Lotus Organics on Facebook, Instagram, YouTubePinterest, and Twitter!

 

-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 and we never guarantee a positive review.**

 

Essential Oils for Allergies {Lavender, Peppermint & Lemon by Young Living}

younglivingallergiesburritobuzzIf you follow my posts, then you know that I am a pretty crunchy mom. When it comes to my life, and my children’s especially, I try to use the best products available. There are so many chemicals surrounding us on a daily basis, so I try to limit chemicals and artificial ingredients that we put into our bodies specifically.

I found essential oils when BK#1 was little. You can read about Tummy Gize and how I use it here. I also use oils for teething, you can read about that here. Last year, I found a blend that works wonders for our family’s allergies. I have some pretty rough seasonal allergies, my husband has seasonal allergies and some specific allergies, and our littles definitely inherited them unfortunately. Thankfully, right now,  it just seems like the babies have seasonal allergies. Their pediatrician prescribed some over the counter allergy medication. They didn’t really help, so she then prescribed prescription strength medicine. After  some time, I didn’t see much of a change in symptoms even though my one year old was taking medication every single day. I consulted with our pediatrician and we decided to start exploring some natural remedies for their allergies before extensive allergy testing and medications.lrj2b.jpg

I started diffusing a blend of peppermint, lavender, and lemon and saw immediate results. Not only were the results immediate, but they were continuous. They are still working. Any time the kids are having any allergy symptoms, I diffuse the blend and their sniffles subside within minutes. As an adult, I not only notice my runny nose and sniffles disappear, but my sinuses are clear! If you have allergies, you know how amazing this feels.

***Before I go into how it works, I need to preface with the fact that I am not a Young Living rep, nor am I being paid to endorse Young Living*** 

I have done the research and tested multiple other brands. Young Living is the best quality and works the best. You can find many different brands at many different price points for your budget. But like most things, you get what you pay for. It is just that simple.

HOW TO USE

Apply:

  • Always dilute with a carrier oil (like coconut) for little ones.
  • Apply to base of neck.
  • Apply to bottom of feet and put on socks.
  • I apply Lavender alone on my cheekbones and bridge of my nose for sinus pressure relief.
  • You can also make a roller ball using equal parts of each oil for travel and to have the oil already mixed on hand.

YOUNGLIVINGBURRITOBUZZALLERGYSEASONDIFFUSER.jpgDiffuse:

  •  I diffuse for the kids 95% of the time.
  • I use this diffuser instead of an expensive one from Young Living and it works great and has never broken. (I have a Young Living diffuser that has died)
  • Fill diffuser to fill line with water then add 5 drops Lavender, 4 drops Lemon, and 3 drops Peppermint. I put the diffuser in whatever room we are in and it runs for around 6 hours before I need to refill.
  • Depending on the severity of their symptoms, I diffuse 24/7 or just in the morning when they wake with sniffles.

Ingest:

  • Add 1 drop of each oil to 1 teaspoon of local honey for children. For adults, use 2-3 drops of each oil.
  • It is an oil, so it will be a little rough on the pallet. Just use a chaser like a glass of water.

Peppermint and Children

Always be safe with your oils. Especially with peppermint. Peppermint is one of the most effective essential oils for respiratory infections and congestion, but it can be dangerous for young children. It can slow breathing, so be sure to always use a safe diluted amount. There are many different opinions and ages that are suggested. Some say don’t use under age 3, some say it’s safe as long as it’s diluted. Our pediatrician said that she felt it was safe if heavily diluted or diffused. I don’t apply blends with peppermint to my little ones, but there is plenty of research saying that if applied safely, it is okay to use. I just worry so much as it is, so I completely avoid applying it since diffusing the blend works so perfectly already. Please read more about oil safety here.

Fall is my favorite season, but our bodies don’t like the weather changes as much as I do. I am so glad to have found a natural solution! I hope this blend helps you as much as it helps my family.

– Amanda

 

 

BurritoBuzz’s Favorite Books {Holidays 2016}

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The parents at BurritoBuzz love books. Each of our moms here at BurritoBuzz really enjoys reading with our little ones in our personal lives, so we thought we’d offer some suggestions of our favorite board books for babies & toddlers! (Because we all know that board books are just infinitely more likely to survive the wear and tear that comes with having little ones…) Reading to our young children has proven to be exponentially beneficial. You can read more about that here.

So, without further hesitation, here is a quick list of some of our favorite board books! Most of these can be easily found on Amazon. With the holidays quickly approaching, a new book makes a great gift for any child in your life!PicMonkey Collage.jpg

  1. The Pout Pout Fish by Deborah Diesen

  2. The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle

  3. Any books by Sandra Boynton, but in particular: Puppies, Oh My Oh My Dinosaurs, Pajama Time, The Belly Button Book, But Not the Hippopotamus,  Snuggle Puppy, Happy Hippo, Angry Duck, Opposites

  4. Pete the Cat by Eric Litwin

  5. Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown

  6. First 100 Words, First 100 Animals by Roger Priddy

  7. BabyLit books by Jennifer Adams

  8. Giraffes Can’t Dance by Giles Andreae

  9. Chicka Chicka Boom Boom by Bill Martin Jr. + John Archambault

  10. Peek a Who by Nina Laden

  11. The Foot Book by Dr. Seuss

  12. The Rainbow Fish by Marcus Pfister

– Katie

The DivaCup: Does It Really Make For A Better Period Experience?

Abso-freaking-lutely. I am definitely a believer. I’m sold and I won’t go back! But let’s start from the beginning.Pink_DivaCup-Logo_No-Star-Final-Aug-2014Large

When my husband and I first started to realize we were going to have a harder time conceiving than we had hoped, we decided to change our lifestyles to try and rid unnecessary toxins and chemicals from our bodies and our household. I heard of the DivaCup, but it sounded gross, weird and just plain scary. But you know what else is scary? All the shit that is in the majority of tampons and pads out there. If you’re not buying organic feminine products, there’s a really good chance you’re putting some nasty stuff up/in/around/below your vagina. And I was too, so no judgement here. I’m going to spare you the science lesson that I would probably botch (and we’re all adults here and know how to use Google). But go now and do a few Google searches about what’s in tampons and pads. Even scarier, the FDA isn’t required to list the ingredients because feminine products are considered “medical devices.” I don’t doubt a man is behind this somehow.

Anyway, after I did all that research and decided my vagina deserves better, I started looking into menstrual cups. I was still hesitant, but I liked the thought that 1. I could spend around $30 and it would last me a year or so and 2. there was no waste going into the landfills. There are tons of different brands, each with different sizes/benefits, but I was a newbie and decided to go with the brand I heard most about, The DivaCup. I ordered mine from Amazon and it was right around $30.

In case you don’t have a clue what the hell I’m talking about when I say “menstrual cup” download (1)(like my mother, love you mom!), I’ll explain. It’s a small silicone ‘cup’ that you place in your vagina. It’s super bendy and flexible, and it kind of suction cups to the walls of your vagina. The cup catches all of the blood. Imagine a funnel (without the hole in the bottom), as long as the cup is in place, there are no leaks.

When I first received my DivaCup, I got online and read all kinds of tips and watched videos so I knew what the heck I was doing. I will admit, it took a few tries to get the hang of it and to get it to where there were no leaks, but once I figured out what worked for me, it’s super easy! It’s completely painless and not weird at all.

Here are some things I’ve heard when I tell people I use the DivaCup:

Ew. I don’t want to get blood on my hands. Yes, you might get a little blood on your hands, most likely  when you’re first figuring out how to use the cup. If you have to take it in and out to get it in the right spot, you may get a little blood on you. Once you get the hang of it though, the cup is clean when you put it in, and the bottom part you pull out should stay pretty clean while it’s in there! I’ve never had an incident where I was covered in blood. It’s your own blood after all, it’ll be okay.

How do you empty it when you’re in public? I don’t. I’ve never had to. You can go 10- 12 hours without emptying it and I’ve always been able to plan ahead to where I will have a private bathroom to rinse my DivaCup out in. I will normally empty it in the morning before leaving for work and in the late afternoon when returning home from work. It’s kind of amazing to see how little you actually bleed most days.

What if I spill my DivaCup everywhere? I don’t have much advice for this, except don’t! It’s really much easier than people think. There’s a little stem at the bottom that you use to pull/pinch the cup to pull it out and empty in the toilet, rinse it in the sink then put it back in. I’ve never had a ‘Carrie’ moment with blood and my DivaCup.

How do you clean it? During my cycle, I just give it a good rinse with hot water in the sink (hot water makes the cup more flexible and easier to insert toM1-M2-BOXES-WEB05202015o). When my cycle ends, after I give it a good cleaning in the sink,  I just put it in boiling water to sterilize it. They now sell a special DivaCup soap called DivaWash, but boiling has always worked for me.

I could go on and on with information and facts, but by this time you’re either interested or you think I’m crazy or gross. There is endless information out there, so I encourage you to do some research and find out what the best option is for you! Your vagina will thank you!

– Chelsea

SmartGames Puzzle Games {Review}

Before Candy Crush and other popular games you can play on cell phones and tablets, kids played regular old board games. When I was little, Monopoly Junior, Shoots and Ladders, and Candyland were some of my favorites (Monopoly is still my favorite as an adult). And now that my daughter is old enough to understand the concept of gameIMG_6538s, I am so excited to show her how fun games can be and introduce her to different games. I love that games can be competitive (a little competition is good) and she can learn so much. Little ones learn hand-eye coordination, dexterity, recognizing letters, numbers and colors, but most of all, they get to spend one-on-one time with you, their favorite person in the world.

Recently, I had the opportunity to review two games from an amazing company called SmartGames, and let me tell you, these games are smart! These aren’t your ordinary board games, they’re puzzles that challenge you mentally but they’re fun. Kids utilize skills from spatial insight to pattern recognition, while they improve their problem solving skills and their memory. IMG_6539SmartGames are made with the best quality of materials and they’re made to last; seriously, they’re fantastically crafted. The fun part is absolutely anyone can play!

The first game is my daughter’s favorite, Smart Car. Smart Car is a wooden puzzle game that challenges little ones to assemble the car with the included wooden pieces. They’ll learn concepts like “top view” and “side view” while also having fun. Included with the 3D puzzle is a booklet containing 48 challenges that range from easy to difficult. Ages 3-8 years old will have a blast, but it’s also fun for mom and dad. We have a lot of fun “playing” with this puzzle and I love that my daughter can look at thgamee challenges and actually put the car together like the picture shown. She loves looking at the solution to compare and she gets excited when she sees she’s done it right.

The second games is my favorite, Little Red Riding Hood Deluxe. The concept of the games is you’re given a “map” of how to set up the board. You put Little Red Riding Hood, the Big Bad Wolf, Grandma’s House and the included trees where the challenge says to put them. Once the board it set up, you have to solve the puzzle by making two paths, one for the Wolf and one for Little Red Riding Hood, to get to Grandma’s house. This puzzle game is a lot of fun, my husband and I have been playing it when the kids go to sleep (don’t judge us). We timed each other to see who can figure out the paths faster. The puzzle includes a booklet with 48 IMG_6541challenges (24 with the Wolf and 24 without) that range from beginner to expert, 2 figurines, 5 path pieces, 3 trees and 1 house. A picture book of Little Red Riding Hood with a modern twist is also included which my daughter loves!

I give SmartGames a 5 out of 5 stars. I can’t wait to order more games for my girls! The quality is amazing and they can be passed down for generations because they’ll last. If you’re looking for fun but different games, not just the normal kid’s games, definitely check out SmartGames! They’re a lot of fun and they have so many different kinds of puzzles for ages 3+. SmartGamesLive is a website where you can play games online and you can also download game apps in the AppStore and GooglePlay! There are several ways to play these awesome games!smartgames_logo

Be sure to follow SmartGames on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram for new releases and sales!

– Casey

**BurritoBuzz received these products 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.**

Learning Phonics with Letterland

With the school year starting, some schools have already started (where the heck did summer go?!), kids are getting back into the swing of things with homework, field trips,  and learning lots of new things. My oldest is starting her second year of preschool next month and I have to admit, we slacked off this summer. With a new baby born in March, we didn’tletterland_logo have a lot of time to work on things she’d learned during the school year. Because of my slacking, we began working on letters and numbers. I heard wonderful things about Letterland, child-friendly phonics, so I reached out and they were kind enough to send two fantastic products.

Letterland has been in business for over 45 year and during those years, they have published hundreds of books to help children read, write and spell to millions of parents around the world. Their products are actually available in over one hundred countries! Letterland uses characters and actions to teach phonics that are scientifically backed.

Letterland sent me their Phonics Touch & Trace Flashcards ($11.99) and Phonics Touch & Trace Book ($14.99) and they’re both phenomenal learning tools! The flashcards and the book have velvet letters that children can trace with their fingers to “write” the letter. There are arrows showing which way to start tracing each letter and dotted lines to help them stay on track. The velvet letters are a huge hit and make it easier for my daughter to trace the letters. She’s almost four, I was pretty surprised how quickly she caught on (she previously refused to do any “writing” with me). Learning to trace the letters and what each letter is (she’s still working on knowing which letter is which but has most down), is really going to help this year when she learns to write her name and the alphabet.

She also loves the stories on each paLetterland-wallpaper5ge that use alliteration. The flashcards help reiterate what she has learned. Several games are included with the flashcards, that make learning how to pronounce letter sounds, finger tracing letters and building simple three letter words to read even more fun!

I am anxious to keep using the workbook and flashcards throughout the year and to see what else my daughter will learn. I give these products a 5 out of 5 stars, because they work! Letterland has so many fun and education products to offer, there are too many to list!  Check out their website here to see everything!

Be sure to follow Letterland on Facebook and Twitter for new products!

– 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.**

First Look and Find Books {Review}

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As I’ve written before, my almost four year old loves books. I love that she got her love of reading and books from my mom (she would read 2-3 thick books a week!). My daughter also loves seek and find books! A few months ago, I was going through a box of my old belongings and found a few Where’s Waldo books and she loved them! So I did a littleIMG_4226 research to see if there were any seek and find books geared towards little ones. I was so happy when I found First Look and Find books from p i kids (Phoenix International Publications).

I purchased two First Look and Find books to see if my daughter liked them. We got Mickey Mouse and Princess Sofia to start off with. She devoured those books! They were all she wanted to look at for a few days until she could find each item with her eyes closed. So I
reached out to p i kids to collaborate on a review together and they kindly sent her a few more titles to check out! The board books come in two different sizes, a small 5″ x 6″ perfect for little hands and a large 10″ x 12.125″ that’s big enough to share. Each page has pictures of several itemFullSizeRender (99)s to look for and the back of each book has bonus challenges, too! The books are perfect to keep kids busy in the car, at the store, at the doctor’s office, anywhere!

There are so many titles available including Disney, Nickelodeon, Thomas The Train, Hello Kitty, Sesame Street, The Peanuts and many more. It’s almost guaranteed that your little one’s favorite characters have a Look and Find book! There are books for Christmas and holidays, too! Kids can search, point and match items, which I love because my daughter is learning as she’s looking! She’s making comparisons and following simple directions. At bedtime, she picks a book, gets her flashlight and “reads” to herself before falling asleep.

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There are other Look and Find products, too, not just books! p i kids sent us two big puzzles that, once put together, have items to find! My daughter loved putting them together then searching for Mickey and friends! There are activity pads, Write-and-Erase books, Fun Boxes (filled FullSizeRender (89)with books, stickers, activity cards, poster and magnifying glass), puzzles, book sets and more! There are so many fun products for little ones! p i kids also publishes a ton of other fun books, be sure to check out their website to see all of their books!

We love Look and Find books and can’t wait to continue to add to our collection! They make great gifts for birthday, holidays, or just because, as any child will love to look through these books! They can be purchased pretty much anywhere books are sold; book stores, Amazon, Walmart, Target, and Toys R US to name a few and prices start at $2.99. I give p i kids Look and Find books a 5 out of 5. My daughter loves when we snuggle in her bed looking for items together and I can’t wait my youngest is able to join in on the search!

– 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.**

Educational & Parent Approved Shows On Netflix For Toddlers

When BK#1 was tiny, I was set in my ways that she would never be glued to the TV and that I wouldn’t allow her to watch TV all the time. All the flipping time. Little did I know, I was in a for a rude awakening!Energy-Drink

Toddlerhood quickly kicked in! Shortly after she turned one, her activity level spiked. Not only was she always on the go, but I was constantly entertaining. She never wanted to be alone, was always into things and I never got a spare second to do much of anything. Hooray, you are developing perfectly tiny human, but really can we cool it for half a second?!?!

I would kill for just a tiny little bit of the energy that toddlers seem to have. I found myself doing everything I possibly could to get her to play on her own just so I could run to the basement to throw a load of laundry in, let the dog out or go to the bathroom. A simple 5 minute task always seemed to have a toddler in tow. She 1342494241384_7825010.pngplayed by herself pretty well, but unless she was in a pack  and play, it never lasted too long. That’s okay! Yes, children need to learn to play alone, but when they are growing, they are starving for information and constantly learning!

One morning I woke up with a migraine the size of Texas. I could barely open my eyes, much less entertain a toddler. I was laying on the floor, hoping closeness would suffice and the chant of “ball, run, read, doggies, chase, sing…” started. I am sorry my tiny human, but I just can’t.

I did what I always said I would not do. I turned on a cartoon. I searched “Nursery Rhymes” on Netflix and hoped to find something to help me entertain until her daddy got home or my meds kicked in, whichever came first.

Flash forward a year later and cartoons are part of our everyday activities. You know why? Because, sometimes you just can’t! Sometimes we simply cannot compete with toddler energy and we just need to chill out for a second. Don’t abuse it, but I want you to know that it is okay. One parent to another: It will not scar your child to watch a little bit of TV. Most of the time they even learn a thing or two.

That being said, here are some BurritoBuzz favorite Netflix shows for little ones:

EDUCATIONAL

  1.  Leapfrog – There are 12 episodes total and the are all extremely educational! Math, science, numbers, letters, shapes, phonics, etc.scout-friends-phonics-farm-video-app_58486-96914_1.jpg
  2. Mother Goose Club – I think it’s super corny, but BK#1 loves it! It’s nursery rhymes and children’s songs sang by kids in little costumes and/or cartoons.
  3. Baby Genius – Nursery rhymes and children’s songs. Nursery Rhymes are so important for reading and vocabulary development and music is so influential for a child.logo_baby_genius
  4. Little Einsteins – This our babies’ absolute favorite right now! BK#1 loves that there is “a mission” and actions with the songs, and BK#2 adores the music!little_einsteins_2223.jpg
  5. Curious George – Not strictly educational, but entertaining and there is always a little lesson in each episode.
  6. Clifford & Clifford Puppy Days – A lot like Curious George. Not strictly educational, but definitely lessons in each episode. Fun and cute characters!

This isn’t on Netflix any more (it just was removed), but definitely worth mentioning.

Daniel Tiger – Created by the “Mister Roger’s Neighborhood” foundation. Every episode is a life lesson. Manners, emotions, friends, family, going to the doctor, potty time, pets, weather, siblings, imagination and much more! Sometimes we get a little sick of the same tunes, but it is BK#1’s absolute favorite and she really has learned a lot from it! Now, like I said it’s not on Netflix, but you can catch it on PBS every day at 11am or on their website. PBS in the morning is generally always toddler friendly.daniel_tiger_header.jpg

BURRITOBUZZ MOMS APPROVED

  1. Minions  – Your toddler probably won’t have a clue what is going on, but it’s loud, funny and high energy, so of course they love it.d9114564-15e2-11e5-_926935j.jpg
  2. How To Train Your Dragon 2 -Adventure, dragons and action!
  3. Sammy & Co. – It is multiple episodes about a turtle and his sea creature friends. Super cute and my animal lover approves for sure!
  4. Puffin Rock – A Netflix original cartoon about the Puffin bird. There are multiple episodes about the cute little bird’s family and their day- to- day life.22335420.jpg
  5. Penguins of Madagascar- Crazy and funny little penguins rescuing their penguin friends from Dave the octopus.
  6. Brother Bear (1&2) – “When a young Inuit hunter needlessly kills a bear, he is magically changed into a bear himself as punishment with a talkative cub being his only guide to changing back.”
  7. Masha & The Bear – Originally it was a Russian TV show and it is translated into English. Super funny little girl tormenting a bear. Reminds me a lot of Tom and Jerry sillinessth19QOEIZI
  8. Home – Super cute new Netflix series based on the movie “Home”, about an alien planet making Earth their home, befriending a human, trying to find her mom and saving the Earth!
  9. Lilo and Stitch – An oldie but goodie! Alien experiment comes to earth and finds a little girl who makes him her pet. She teaches him to be good and how to care about family. Very kid friendly and awesome example of a family that isn’t “perfect”. Whatever that is!
  10. Stella and Sam – Adorable show about 9 year old Stella and her 4 year old brother Sam. I love that big sister Stella always lets Sam come on all of her adventures!

Discover-The-Forest-Ad-Campaign.jpgAswith anything, TV is only okay in moderation. Make sure you child is active and not sitting in front of it all day! Also, remember to preview what your children watch first. They are tiny little parrots and there are a lot of things in “PG” movies that I wouldn’t want my kids saying or doing!

– Amanda

For Your Little Bookworm: BabyLit Books

My mother absolutely loved reading books. She went to the library several times a week and everyone knew her name, she knew all of the employees’ names as well. She would read super thick, long books cover to cover in just a few days. I don’t think I have met another person who enjoyed reading as much she did. My mom passed away from cancer less than two months before I found out I was expecting my first child. I honestly believe my daughter Stella (her middle name is Catherine, after my mom Cathy) was sent here by my mother to help heal my broken heart. I also feel that she gave my daughter her love of reading and books. Stella loves looking at books and being read to. She follows along, usually trying to recite the words of books we’ve read together a bazillion times. I amFullSizeRender (69) always looking for new and interesting books for us to read, and now that I have another little one, I’m looking for books that they can both enjoy. I have heard such wonderful things about BabyLit books, so I reached out and they kindly sent us several of their adorable books.

BabyLit books are a fashionable way to introduce little ones to classic literature with timeless writers like Jane Austen, William Shakespeare, Charles Dickens, Charlotte Bronte, Lewis Carroll and Edgar Allan Poe just to name a few. The illustrations are phenomenal, they’re so bright, colorful and engaging for both my toddler and baby. The artwork really keeps them both interested and entertained. Each book is a primer, an introduction to a subject of study or is used for teaching children to read. The different primers include colors, shapes, emotions, counting, animals, flowers, opposites, weather, fashion, anatomy, ocean, camping sounds, and even French and Spanish languages.

There are so many fun titles that it was actually pretty hard to narrow down which ones  to receive. I ended up choosing Jabberwocky (Little Master Carroll), Wuthering Heights (Little Miss Bronte), Emma (Little Miss Austen), The Secret Garden (Little Miss Burnett) and Edgar and the Tattle-Tale Heart (inspired by Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Tell-Tale Heart”). The quality of each book is fantastic. BabyLit books are 7” x “7 board books (our Poe book was available in a hardcover, but it’s also available in a board book) and each are around 22 pages long. At $9.99 each, they are right in line with the price of children’s books. Jennifer Adams, the BLIT7A-babylit-A-detail2-1200-300x300author of BabyLit books, does a fabulous job bringing classic stories to a young child’s level. While I have personally never read The Secret Garden, Emma or Wuthering Heights (the reading gene must have skipped me), I really enjoy reading them to my girls.

There are 3 titles in the BabyLit First Steps collection, Edgar and The Tattle-Tale Heart, Edgar gets Ready for Bed and Edgar and the Treehouse Usher which are all inspired by Edgar Allan Poe and are picture books. All Aboard books, written by Haily and Kevin Meyers, celebrates the unique qualities of cities and states such as London, Paris, Washington DC, California, and New York, a must for the travelling baby or toddler. BabyLit also has an awesome coloring book called DoodleLit: Drawing on the Classics with pages from classic such as Pride & Prejudice, Alice in Wonderland, Romeo & Juliet and many more. It is next (along with a bunch of other BabyLit books) on my list for my girls!

I highly recommend BabyLit books for the little bookworm in your life. With all of their amazing titles and primers to choose from, there is something for everyone and I promise you, it won’t easy to decide which books to get and you won’t be able to have just one on your child’s bookshelf. I already want the complete collection and a list of which ones BLIT8C-babylit-8-c-detail1-1200we’re getting next! They’re definitely my new go-to gifts for birthdays and holidays for my little loved ones! Be sure to check out their website to see the entire BabyLit product line, as books are just the tip of the iceberg for this innovative company! They have dolls, totes, buttons, notebooks, puzzles and games which all relate to the books!

Don’t forget to follow BabyLit on Instagram, Twitter and Facebook for new releases and sales!

– Casey

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**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.**

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.**

JollyB Tree Building Blocks {Review}

I love finding new and unique educational toys for my three year old preschooler. Toys that keep her engaged and that gets her excited are winners in my book. Anything to keep her away from the TV and iPad, am I right? So when we connected with JollyB Toys on IMG_0573Instagram, I fell in love with their beautiful wooden educational toys. JollyB was kind enough to send one of their toys, Tree Building Blocks, for us to try. When it came, my daughter could not wait to get it open and start building.

It’s a really neat concept that helps with hand-eye coordination and fine motor skill development geared towards toddlers two years old and up. I just love wooden toys. They have an heirloom factor to me (so I can save them and pass it down to my children’s children). The set comes with a brown wooden base and a trunk, which is what you build from. It comes with 18 wooden branches, 40 beautifully colored leaves and 10 red grains that kids can build their tree with. Kids can play around with the branches and leaves to build various tree pattern and learn their colors when sorting the leaves. They also learn IMG_0572how about balance; if you put too many leaves and branches on one side, the tree can tip over. Their imagination can really run wild as there is no right or wrong way to build their trees. The possibilities are endless!

Pros:

  • Engaging and educational
  • Endless play, as there are unlimited ways to build
  • Multiple children can play at one time
  • Learn balance and grows interest of how to build things
  • Leaves can be sorted by color, another learning aspect
  • Fun for parents and children alike
  • Doubles as a cute decoration when not being played with

Cons:

  • Some holes in the branches don’t fit the leaves and grains
  • Leaves are heavy compared to the lightweight branches
  • Several leaves were stuck together (I was able to them pull apart but the paint is now messed up)

I give this toy a 4 out of 5 stars, only because some of the holes don’t fit the leaves and grains. But overall, it’s super cute and fun. My toddler really enjoys it and has been asking to play with it multiple times a day. If you’re looking for a unique, educational and engaging toy for your toddler, consider the Tree Building blocks toy for JollyB. It was also make a great birthday or Christmas present (it’s coming fast!) for the little builder in your jollb.pnglife! J0llyB makes so many fantastic wooden educational toys, be sure to check them all out on their website here!

Follow JollyB on Instagram, too, @JollyBforKids and on Facebook at Jolly B Toddler.

– Casey

Baby Trend 1st Debut 3-Wheel Travel System {Review}

I’m a big fan of Baby Trend baby products. When I was pregnant with my first daughter I received their Expedition Travel System (jogging stroller + infant car seat) which is a phenomenal product system. The stroller is so rugged and sturdy with its bike-like tires, it literally can be used on any surface (I’ve tested it) and I always recommend it to friends who are buying or registering for their baby. Baby Trend car seats are safe and affordable which is very importable to me. I was excited when I saw they added more sleek and modern designs to their stroller and car seat line and when I was pregnant with my second baby I knew I wanted to go with Baby Trend again.

debutProduct Facts:

  • Stroller Weight limit: birth to 50 pounds
  • Stroller Height limit: up to 42”
  • Car seat Weight limit: 5 to 32 pounds
  • Car seat Height limit: up to 32”

I was given the opportunity to review Baby Trend’s 1st Debut 3-Wheel Travel System and I was thrilled to give it a spin and share its beauty with our readers! As soon as the delivery man dropped it travel system off, I ripped the box open (the big box doubles as the best free toy for toddlers!) and assembled the stroller. It was incredibly easy to put together – I did it by myself with my whiny toddler and baby clinging to me. I didn’t even have to look at the instructions. Once together (took maybe 5 minutes), I strolled around my house with my 7 week old. It was such a smooth ride! I first tried the bassinet which I liked but the canopy doesn’t cover as much as I would like even when I unfolded the gray lip out. It’s so easy to attach to and remove from stroller and it folds flat when storing in the trunk or closet. I love that baby can lay completely flat in the bassinet but can also be strapped in for safety thanks to its 5-point harness. With just the touch of a button and pushing the bassinet upward, it goes in to the toddler seat position. Once in the seat position, just use the buckle underneath to make a seat (requires a bit of strength) and you’re done. carsesatA snack tray and cup holder would make it more appealing for when baby gets older, though. We then tried baby in the car seat which is absolutely amazing. I had a Baby Trend FlexLoc infant car seat before this one and I couldn’t believe the difference in comfort. This one is so cozy and I love how protected the baby is in it! The plush padding hugs her little body and she fell right to sleep the first time in it. The basket underneath is the perfect size (weight limit is 5 pounds), and has plenty of room for all of our stuff. We took it outside for a walk the day we got it and I was so impressed with the way it handled and how smooth it was on uneven surfaces. It’s really easy to fold up: just put two loops on each side and it folds right down to the ground. It’is also very lightweight, which makes it easy to get in and out of the trunk. It helps that all 3 wheels can be removed to put in a small trunk or to store in a small space.

I love the ease the stroller provides. I have used it on trips to the doctor, Target runs, quick trips to the grocery store, to the park and walks around the neighborhood. When running into a store for a few things, I just put the car seat on the stroller and go. It has made girlsrunning errands with a toddler and baby a breeze. I also use the bassinet and stroller when outside in the backyard with my 3 year old. My toddler gets the attention she craves and I can still have my eyes and ears on her baby sister while she sleeps in the shade.

Pros:

  • Gender-neutral colors
  • Stroller is lightweight
  • Car seat has very soft plush padding
  • Stroller is a smooth ride
  • Bassinet lays flat
  • Removable bar for access to baby in bassinet
  • Adjustable stroller handle
  • Easy to change between car seat and bassinet

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    Adjust straps easily with the turn of a knob located on the back of the car set
  • Stroller folds almost flat and wheels can be removed
  • Seat and bassinet can face toward you or away from you
  • Large storage basket
  • No-thread harness on car seat to adjust straps
  • The triangle handle on car seat makes it easy to carry

Cons:

  • Small bassinet canopy
  • No cup holders
  • Small front wheel (can cause tipping)
  • Hard foam EVA tires
  • No tray for toddler seat
  • Car seat is on the heavy side

The only things I would change is the canopy (make it bigger) and I would add a cup holder for mom and dad, as I was disappointed that it currently lacks one. I would also like it better if the wheels were rubber like the Baby Trend jogging strollers. These ones are like a hard foam and I think rubber wheels would last longer and be able to navigate better on rough terrain. All in all, it’s a great stroller and car seat and I give it 5 stars. I am very happy with both the car seat and stroller. I have been recommending it to friends and family who are expecting babies, as I have with all Baby Trend products I have tried and loved in the past.

– Casey

 

Disclosure: I applied to be part of the Baby Trend Product Review Group and received this product free of charge. All opinions are my own and not influenced by Baby Trend.

 

La Petite Crème {Product Review}

Until recently, I didn’t know that French moms don’t use baby wipes. Instead, they use a diaper lotion that cleanses and also protects tiny bottoms. I found La Petite Crème on Instagram a few months ago and I couldn’t wait to imagetry their product when my baby was born. Founded by 2 French natives and mothers, Franny and Cecile, La Petite Crème aims to fight diaper rash naturally. Free of parabens, talc, petrolatum, fragrances and hypoallergenic makes it a safe choice for babies with even the most sensitive skin.

It’s so easy to apply, too. After shaking well, apply to a cotton pad or wash cloth and cleanse diaper area and you’re done! No need to imagerinse off. La Petite Crème keeps harmful chemicals away from your baby’s delicate skin while also keeping baby wipes out of the landfill. Since I started using it on my 5 week old, she has yet to have any type of diaper rash or even the slightest redness. A little goes a long way as well so the bottle can last a good amount of time which will save you money. And it’s completely safe to use on cloth diapers! All in all, this imageproduct is fantastic. I am so glad I found them, I’m so happy to share them with our readers! Check out their website here to learn more and to order!

– 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 with a product and we never guarantee a positive review.**

 

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.**

I want to keep my kiddos in their bubble forever!!

Lately, I have been quickly reminded that as parents, we are not always going to be able to protect our little ones. For some reason, I thought that as my babies got older, things would get easier. Boy was I ever wrong!! It is only going to get more and more difficult to protect them. What was I thinking?! I should have known better!! I just hope I can get better at “letting go” and “dealing with” the fact that I can’t control everything. I can’t keep my kiddos in a little safe bubble forever and ever (even though I wish I could).

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Just recently, my oldest (she’s almost 3) slipped and fell in the shower. This was not her first time in the shower with her dad or I, and it wasn’t even the first time she has slipped. Kids slip, kids fall, kids can even get hurt, but this time was different. She developed a goose egg above her eye immediately that I noticed as soon as I scooped her up off the floor. I had a pit in my stomach and the “I want to vomit” feeling instantly, but did my best to remain calm and get my husband. She never lost consciousness and eventually stopped crying, but her eye kept swelling, to the point where she could barely see out of it. We put ice on it and got some advice from a family member who is a physician (it was a Saturday night of course). She ended up going to bed that night, but I couldn’t help but worry about her and if it was going to be okay. My husband ended up taking her to the ER the next day (here’s a helpful site on when to take your kiddos to the hospital). Everything turned out to be fine, but it’s over 3 weeks later and the little thing still has a bruise and a bump. If I could just protect her from everything, this never would have happened! I couldn’t help but blame myself.Mommy-Guilt-Drs-Orders-CrestProHealth-Sponsored-MamaMommyMom-2

 As parents, we’re going to beat ourselves up about every little thing that happens to our kids. We can’t help it; it’s how we’re programmed. It doesn’t mean that we are bad parents when our little ones get hurt or injured. It just means that we love them when we sit and think about not wanting anything to ever happen to them! We have to lighten up on ourselves though! I took total responsibility when my little girl got her first black eye/goose egg. I was worried sick about her. I felt like the worst parent in the world, but it happens. It wasn’t my fault. I’m not the worst mother on the planet. She’s probably going to have more goose eggs. It took me a long time to come to terms with this, and I am still working on it.

 We experience this feeling of guilt for a multitude of reasons and on a daily basis.  My “mom guilt” 2ad5c4477fb3f866c83f63d3365610f4occurred instantly when my little girl slipped and fell. Sharing what happened with others and hearing them respond with stories of their kiddos having similar accidents, made me feel like I wasn’t alone. People reminded me that things like this are going to happen, no matter how much I try to prevent them. It’s how my kids are going to learn and grow, but we have to let them. They can’t aren’t going to stay babies forever.

So, for all you parents out there who might have experienced something similar with your little ones or are just worried that someday you will . . . IT IS OKAY!!! You’re still a fantastic parent and your kiddo is going to turn out fine! If you still worry all the time, that’s okay too, but cut yourself a break sometimes. You’re not alone. We are never going to stop worrying about our kids. We are always going to want what is best for them and to protect them. It just means we care!

 

Check out the Parents website for more helpful links related to infant emergency situations. They have links to common infant health scares and first aid tips.

child-injury

 

-Megan

Pregnancy For The Control Freak: Part One

*I am not a medical professional. All of this information has come from my own experience and research. If you have any serious questions please, consult a physician.*

 

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OBGYN/ Midwife – Facts/ Questions/ To know

  • Level of Education- this is the major difference between the two. Midwives are typically a NP with around 6 years of school, whereas OBGYN’s have their PHD’s and have had somewhere around 10 years. They are trained on different things, and have different methods of doing thing. Read more on the difference of education here.

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  • Birth Experience- What do you want your baby’s birthday to look like? It might end up completely opposite of what you planned, but are you a “Give me the drugs” woman or are you a “Lets breathe through this” woman? 
    •  Midwives are known for “Low tech High Touch”
    • OBGYN’s can intervene in the birth. {C-section, forceps, vacuum etc.} AND they are more likely to intervene sooner.

 

  • Pain ManagementDo you want drugs? How are you planning to deal with the pain? Do you want someone to administer drugs or propose some other techniques first? Chances are an OBGYN isn’t going to massage your back during contractions.

 

  • Do you want to move around, or do you want to stay in bed? – Midwives are more apt to let you go without consistent monitoring. 

 

  • Are you high risk? – High blood pressure, epilepsy, heart disease, diabetes, thyroid disease, etc. If you are high risk chances are you want a doc present 24/7

 

  • Do you already have a doctor that you love, and have been going to since you were 16? – If you do then they know you pretty well, and will no doubt give you a great birth experience.

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    …..I had to

 

  • AppointmentsCNM’s (certified mid wife) tend to have more time allotted for their appointments to chat, get to know you, and answer questions, but most importantly ASK the questions that are important!

 

  • Go with your gut! – If you are scared to death of needles, and have zero pain tolerance than chances are you aren’t going to want a natural birth and a midwife. But, if you want to have a natural birth, or even a medicated birth, but want someone there to help you and support you through it the whole time, then a midwife is perfect for you.

 

 

 

Why I chose a midwife…….

I wanted a natural birth, completely un-medicated. “I can do this, I was made for this” was my typical answer when people asked me why!bd428dcbabf4518480804289205714e6.jpg

Vaginal birth was a priority! There is a high percentage that you will have a c-section with OBGYN. This article has a lot of great comparisons!

I wanted a care giver, not someone who was going to get pulled to another room while I was in the middle of intense labor. It depends on your practice, and midwife, but my midwife was able to stay with me (or near my room….she left for bathroom breaks, food, paperwork etc) during my entire labor! There was no “Don’t push we are waiting for the doctor”!

I did NOT want medication or any type of IV. I had all the tools I needed to manage my pain, my baby and I were healthy, I was eating and drinking up until I got the hospital, and I had a water bottle that I was continually drinking from after…..there was no need for an immediate IV for fluids, Pitocin, or anything else! My midwife supported me in my decision and never encouraged me otherwise. She was always looking out for my best interest! We went over my birth plan well before labor was a possibility and she knew what I wanted. She was running the show, but on MY terms! If anything was medically necessary then it happened, but otherwise it was my body and I getting my baby into the world!

A midwife gave me the ability to have the birth I wanted, but I was in the safety of a hospital in case something went wrong. AND she worked alongside my OBGYN! I met with him a few times during my pregnancy to monitor my thyroid function’s effects on my baby.ccb241615d1ab231e64dca64eabf4159.jpg

~Amanda

 

…Pregnancy For the Control Freak will be continued…..

Noobie Box {Review}

There’s nothing quite like the surprise and joy a subscription box can bring. There are so many different kinds of subscription boxes and they are all equal in the surprises they bring each imagemonth. My favorite kind of boxes are for babies and kids and I am thrilled with one that I recently received, called the Noobie Box. It is geared towards pregnant and new mothers (and baby) and is packed full of amazing products, samples, discount codes and coupons!

I couldn’t wait to try out all of the products and the first thing I tried was the Healthy Mama Herbal Tea – it supports pregnancy wellness (helps calm the stomach and helps with morning sickness) because I suddenly felt like I did in my first trimester – imagenauseous and sick! I loved that it is all natural, caffeine and gluten free. It is delicious and really did calm my tummy! I loved the sample of Vita Coco Coconut Oil, I have never tried this brand (I have tried others) and I really liked it! It’s great to cook with. After popping it in the fridge, I tried the full size bottle of Bundle Organics pasturized juice (made with kale, apple, lemon, ginger with folic acid, imagecalcium, vitamin D, omega 3 and iron). HOLY COW. I could drink 12 of these bad boys a day! They’re specifically made for expecting and new moms which I love. I also love that it is made with USDA organic fruits and veggies – none of the bad stuff! My favorite product in the box would have to be the Weleda Lip Balmit is fantastic and stays on my lips for quite a while. I love it!

I also received awesome discount codes from several awesome companies like Sigikid – a company from Germany that makes and sells the cutest (and organic!) snugglies, rattles and musical toys and Mine4Sure – an awesome company that creates custom imagename tags for all of your baby essentials (clothes, lovies, bottles, diaper bag, ect.). Also included was a coupon and discount code from Buddle Organics (so I can get more yummy juices!) A discount code for Icon Undies was include as well and I cannot wait to order a pair! They’re pee proof underwear that keep you dry and odor-free from little leaks – how awesome is that?! Perfect for after baby when your bladder does what it wants!

Now for the baby items.. I won’t be able to use these items until baby comes (in just two weeks!) but I am eager to try them out imagewhen she’s here and I will let you all know how they stack up! I received a 4oz Avent bottle that I have previously read about (reviews were awesome!) so I can’t wait to give it a try and see how it compares to my favorite Tommee Tippee bottles. More Weleda products were included, which based on my love for their lip balm I bet I will love the samples of their White Mallow imagediaper rash cream and their Calendula diaper rash cream. Another product Included that I love and think is genius is Milk Baby’s formula storage bags, they’re so convenient and space saving in the diaper bag. So smart! And I can’t wait to use my City Grips stroller handlebar grip covers! They’re so stylish and comfortable.

Not only did this box blow my mind with all of it’s useful and amazing products but I love that informational brochures were also included, about Cord Blood Banking, how to get a Medela breast pump for free from your insurance, information about breastfeeding and much more plus a copy of The Bump magazine and a parenting guide! This box would make an awesome gift for an expecting or new mommy, I give it 5 stars! It is one of the best boxes out there in my opinion.

– Casey

Let’s get this out in the open…

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I’ve struggled with writing this post for more than half a year now. Wondering what words are right, fearing the emotions that would come with it, and being utterly ashamed of the way I felt, even if only briefly.

I struggled to get pregnant. TTC (trying to conceive, for anyone unfamiliar with the infertility world,) for 1.5 years. I had a hard pregnancy, where my OB thought my son might come early (too early.) My labor was straight from a dramatic scene you would see in Grey’s Anatomy, where my son’s heart rate was dropping low because he had the umbilical cord wrapped around his neck. And post partum? Sheesh. My son had bad reflux– the kind where they choke on their own spit up and you’re terrified that they could do it in the middle of the night and you can’t get to them quickly enough.

My first week home was fine. No major problems. Typical insomnia, but OH so much love for that tiny human of mine. I cried happy tears, because the outcome of my labor could have been vastly different. I came home with a happy, healthy little baby. I was beyond thankful.

After a week or so I noticed my hormones tanking. I was upset all the time. I was sleep deprived to the point of psychosis. I didn’t eat. I didn’t do anything. I was paralyzed with the crippling fear of keeping my son happy and healthy. He ate all the time, slept on a crazy schedule. He spit up more than he ate. I had lost interest in everything other than taking care of my guy.

I lost my identity completely.

I went from being this strong, independent woman… to being afraid to leave the house for fear of strangers with germs, car accidents, my child throwing a fit in the store, etc etc etc. There was so much unknown.

And while I can say that I never had thoughts of harming my child, I did sit rocking him with tears flowing (often on him,) wondering what I was doing wrong. Googling all hours of the night ways to help him sleep, and feel content and not be so refluxy. Untitled.png

I didn’t want company. I didn’t want to talk, hang, let other people hold him. I didn’t want their germs, their advice, their opinions. I didn’t want it.

My mom helped often, and I went to check-ups with my OB to make sure my hormones were getting balanced out. Otherwise, I’m not sure how I would have made it through.

Dealing with the baby blues and postpartum depression absolutely does not correlate with whether or not you love your child. Anyone that knows me can tell you that my world revolves around my little boy. I love him more than I could ever put into words. I would do anything for him. I need him all the time, and I miss him when I’m away from him for even a few minutes.

But PPD takes over your mind completely. Thoughts become irrational and finite, and looking past the temporary situation is near impossible. There is an immense struggle to adapt, because it all happens so quickly.

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Post partum depression is still a taboo topic. If you have a happy, healthy baby… then you should just be happy. But the brain doesn’t understand that. It just doesn’t. And while PPD usually subsides within a few months when hormones level out, sometimes it requires medication and lasts a much longer span of time (a really amazing crusader that has spoken out about her long battle with PPD is Hayden Panettiere. Also, Brooke Shields wrote a great book on her PPD.) Not saying that it takes a celebrity to realize that this is a problem, but I’m glad that a few celebrities are using their fame to open up about their struggles.)

Realizing that there is a problem is important. Letting people know that you need a support system is the best way through it. Go to your doctor and get a check-up. Talk to other women that have had PPD and the baby blues. Get out. Seriously… don’t worry about strangers at Target when you’re waltzing through in your yoga pants, mom bun, and your child is screaming. And baby wear— baby wearing helped me SO much. I felt like I gained some independence back when I started wearing my son around everywhere. It’s great bonding, and allows you to move around freely.

If you have a spouse/significant other, make sure you explain to them how you are feeling so that they know when and where they can help. Take all the help you can get. Make parenting a bonding experience, and try to avoid frustration in times of chaos. This is a learning experience for him as much as it is for you. My husband was a wonderful support. And while he wasn’t always as quick to run to our crying baby, he helped and he really stepped up when I asked for extra support with taking care of our newborn. I am forever thankful to him for being such a wonderful dad.

And lastly… don’t be ashamed. As moms we are entirely too hard on ourselves. We created and gave life, and we’re putting another human’s needs above our own. Most of us have insane hormonal imbalances after having our little ones, so we need to give ourselves some credit. Take care of yourself! You cannot serve from an empty vessel.

I’d also like to reach out to adoptive parents here, because it’s totally possible to have PPD as an adoptive parent! There are a ton of articles out there on this, but here is one that I liked.

If you have a severe form of PPD that leads to unusual anger/rage, I encourage you to get help as soon as possible. There are all kinds of agencies that specialize in getting women with PPD the help that they need.

PPD/Baby Blues lasted roughly 3 months for me. After which point, I noticed my hormones leveling back out. I was able to resume normal life activities, and being a mother finally felt natural. I have a happy one year old son who is my everything. “This too shall pass” was my happy motto, and I’m so glad that I was right. Life has never been better.

-Katie

What I’ve Learned After 4 Years of Marriage

My four year wedding anniversary is tomorrow. I know it’s not the longest time, but being married to someone for any length of time comes with lessons and should be celebrated these days. Marriage doesn’t seem to mean much of anything lately. It’s ‘just a piece of paper’ is what a lot of people say. But that piece of paper binds two people together, for better or for worse, in sickness and in health. It’s easy to bail and get a divorce if it gets hard, but it takes much more to stick it out and make it work. Here are a few things I learned over the past four (wonderful) years of marriage. My husband has the worst memory. When it comes to taking out the trash. The trash goes out the same night every week (unless there is a holiday to throw it off), which is Monday night for Tuesday morning pick up. For the life of him, he cannot remember to take it out without me writing a note or telling him 12 times before I go to bed to take it out. 

You can’t smother your husband because he is snoring or breathing loudly. I am a very picky sleeper. I can’t sleep with any noises other than the fan on the nightstand. But my dear husband sometimes snores or simply ‘breaths’ as he says (which is loud) and it makes me want to smother him with a pillow. But that is illegal. So I just shove him so he rolls over or I put a blanket on his face (making sure he can still breath) so I don’t have to hear him.   Let your husband know you’re OCD about cleaning before you wed. I can’t stress this enough. It will prevent a lot of arguments if he knows exactly how you want things done. Ha, who am I kidding? You could write a list, take a video, show him a million times and it still won’t be up to your standards. And that’s okay. You two will always do things differently. Cut him some slack and tell him thank you for trying.


Say ‘I’m Sorry’
. This one is easy and straight forward. If you messed up, forgot something, made a mistake, say you’re sorry. Also, be easy to forgive (big and small things) and after you forgive, wash your hands of that issue. Don’t rehash past mistakes and throw them back in eachother’s face. Continuing to bring up the past prevents healing and moving forward.


Don’t compare your relationship to someone elses relationship
. This is counter productive. Your relationship is unlike any other relationship, it is unique to just the two of you. So comparing it to what someone else does or doesn’t do has no impact on your relationship. If you’re jealous of what someone else has or does, there’s a problem. Work it out.


What is your husband’s Love Language? What is yours?
If you don’t know what you or your husband’s Love Language is, take this quiz to figure it out! Mine is services: nothing makes me happier than my husband washing the dishes without me asking or sweeping the floor for me. And my husbands is physical touch: he wants to be close to me all the time. It’s crazy accurate and will show you in what way each of you wants and needs love. Then talk about how you both can show each other love. 


Surprise each other
. Who doesn’t love surprises or to be ‘spoiled’ every once in a while? Leave little love notes around the house for your husband to find or pick up his favorite candy or kind of beer on the way home. Cook his favorite meal just because or rub his back after a long day. Never stop doing things to show you’ve been thinking about them all day. The little things are the best things and the ones we remember most Your husband comes first. He is your partner in life. Even before your children, your husband should always be your #1. And he is also an equal. If he is discipling your child(ren), don’t interfere. He may discipline differently but that’s okay. Your child will respect him more if you don’t interrupt and tell him he’s wrong or correct him in anyway. I’m learning to do this myself. P


Intimacy
. Sex is important. Even after having kids, being busy with work and home life and everything else that is thrown at you on a daily basis, you have to make time for intimacy. As humans, we crave feeling and being wanted by the person we love. Don’t put it on the back burner.

Happy Anniversary, Allen! 

– Casey