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

 

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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.**

 

How We Afforded IVF

Woof. For us, the financial aspect of infertility was probably the most stressful. We have easily spent $15,000 at this point and that is cheap compared to a lot of couple’s expenses. It’s hard to spend that kind of money only for a chance of becoming pregnant. There are no guarantees unless you go to a clinic that offers those programs and it’s still a gamble. They’re generally more expensive up front, so if you get lucky and get pregnant on your first shot, you’re out a lot of money!

We took a year off to save up the money for IVF because the money is due upfront and we also wanted to use that time to get in the best health that we could. Here are some of the ways we raised money:

  • GoFundMe. We had some awesome friends (Katie from BurritoBuzz and her husband) who asked us if they could set up a GoFundMe account for us. This was an amazing gift and it helped us raise a good chunk of money without having to do a lot of work. This was great too, since our goal was to also raise infertility awareness.
  • Garage Sale. We had a massive garage sale. It was huge. My mom and I cleaned out her basement and we also had a lot of people donate items for us to sell. I advertised it on a local buy/sell/trade page and that really helped. A lot of people who stopped at the sale also wished us well with IVF and that was very sweet.image
  • Cookie Fundraiser. This one might not be as feasible for everyone, but I went to culinary school for pastry arts. I worked at a bakery and they offered to let me make and sell an item at the bakery, and the profit would go to our clinic for our IVF. I chose to make giant triple chocolate chip cookies. I did the work off the clock, but it was definitely worth it!
  • Pinched Pennies. We had a lot of game nights at home. We’re homebodies anyway, so this wasn’t too hard! We didn’t make ourselves miserable, but by cutting back on a few “extra” things here and there, you can save a lot of money. Most of our friends understood and were happy to have cheap date nights with us!
  • Apply For Discount Drug Programs. Our clinic provided us with forms to apply to both First Steps and Compassionate Care discount programs. They’re income based IVF drug discount programs. Our nurse also suggested writing a cover letter and we were offered 25% off from both companies and these discounts are good for one year.

I’ve made friends with people who have gotten loans specifically for IVF/infertility treatments with low interest rates, so that’s another good option! There are also grants you can apply for. Another idea is to open a credit card that offers no interest for a certain amount of time. I’m a firm believer that if there is a will, there is a way!!

With all of these tips, we raised a huge chunk of the money that we needed for IVF. We couldn’t have done it otherwise. I know a lot of people never get to pursue IVF strictly due to the enormous cost, so I hope that this might give you some options before giving up!

Baby Dust!

– Chelsea

Should I Ask For Help When Trying to Conceive?

How long is too long to TTC without a doctor’s help? Obviously I am no doctor, but if you’re asking yourself this question, maybe my opinion will help ease your mind!

A simple Google search will probably lead you to an answer like these:

  • 1 year of trying if you’re under the age of 35
  • 6 months if you’re over the age of 35

Your OB/GYN might also stick to those guidelines. This might be very good advice too; I normally like to assume that doctors know what they’re talking about more than I do. For me though, I made my first “family planning” appointment with an OB/GYN after about 8 months of trying.

I did this because I wasn’t having regular periods. It’s extremely hard to chart your cycle when you don’t cycle (and a lot of wasted pregnancy tests.. and man, they expensive!). So my husband finally convinced me to go. They ended up offering us help and treatments right off the bat due to this. Turns out not having periods is very unhealthy and can lead to cancer. So if you’re reading this and haven’t had a period in over 90 days, please go see a doctor whether or not you’re trying to conceive.

I can’t say whether or not you’ll be offered help before a year, but I can say it doesn’t hurt to ask and be proactive. Especially if you truly think something is wrong. I’ve learned in this infertility journey that it really pays off to be well informed and to advocate for yourself. But you also need to trust your doctor and if you don’t, you need to find a new doctor that you can trust. There’s nothing wrong with going and asking for help! You’re not alone and needing a little help is nothing to be ashamed of. ❤

– Chelsea

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.**

Playground Etiquette 101

2009-04-21_Hampton_Forest_Apartment_Homes_playgroundTrust me, it’s a real thing and no one seems to know about it. It’s like a list of silent rules to abide by in order to not make other moms and dads despise you (and your child) on the playground. With warm weather becoming more steady, and playgrounds being a great way to socialize and wear out your stir-crazy toddler, I figured it couldn’t hurt to share the (unspoken) playground rules.

  1. It’s a jungle gym, not a babysitter. I know “gym” sounds like “Jim” and it can be confusing for some, but I assure you “gym” won’t take very good care of your child. Under no circumstance is it okay to leave your child, no matter the age, at the playground. Please do not try to give me your phone number and ask me to text or call you if there is an emergency. I don’t know you. You don’t know me. See Rule #4.
  2. Don’t let your kid be a punk. I know, I know, name calling isn’t nice and I would never tell your kid he’s a punk to his face, but I would have no problem letting you know. If your kid pushes, hits, kicks, spits on or throws a handful of mulch at my kid, the playground drama will be redirected between you and I. I mean seriously, its a park. It’s full of fun things, let’s keep it fun.
  3. Stay off your phone. This is my biggest pet peeve and I’m sure everyone else would agree. Pay attention to your child, and not whatever time consuming electronic you brought with you to the park. This kind of goes hand in hand with Rule #1 and #4. Multiple times I have seen parents show up to the park, release their children and find a shady bench under a tree and sit down and scroll through what I’m assuming is Facebook. It only takes a second for your kid to put themselves in a potentially dangerous situation and I’m sure your Facebook feed isn’t nearly as important as the safety of your child. I can’t make this up… 2015 Mom of the Year shows up to the park with her 3 kids. Kids run to the play area, mom sits on a picnic table in the shade 100+ yards away and digs out her phone and throws on some headphones. I’m paying attention to my child and chit chatting with the other parents whose child is playing nicely with mine. Fast forward 10 minutes… Mom of the Year hastily runs over in a panic to me and another mom, and asks if we have seen her son and how she doesn’t know “how this happened” and that she was “checking her email and listening to Spotify”.  Turns out this kid is severely non-verbal autistic and he wandered over 400 yards from the play ground and was on the walking path through the wooded area by himself. SEVERELY NON-VERBAL AUTISTIC CHILD. FOUR HUNDRED YARDS AWAY… on a WALKING PATH THROUGH THE WOODS all because his mother wanted to sit in the shade and rock out to the Biebs. What irks me even more is when I hear a kid yell “Mom look at this!” and the poor kid gets an “uh huh” while their mom scrolls through her phone not even glancing up. Come on lady, your kid is begging for your attention. Who cares if you’ve seen them go down the slide backward 99 times before, they obviously think the 100th time is just as cool and important as the first 99. The little moments go by in the blink of an eye, and the next thing you know the “Mom look at this” comment is when they’re handing you their college acceptance letter.
  4. Your child is not my responsibility. Attach this to Rules #1 and #3. If little Tommy wants to climb to the very top of the highest piece of playground equipment, I will most likely belt out a friendly “oh no don’t fall” and then proceed to tell my child that if he ever thinks that’s a good idea, to unthink it. If your child falls face first in a pile of mulch and you’re not paying attention, please DO NOT get an attitude with me because YOUR child fell while YOU weren’t paying attention. My child is my responsibility and your child is yours. It’s that simple. Maybe I should make it a habit to get non attentive mother’s cell phone numbers so when their child is in a situation where they will  have splinters of mulch in their face, I can just shoot them a text to advise her.
  5. Unless your child is “5 or under”, they shouldn’t be in the “5 and under” area. This is pretty self-explanatory. If the sign says “5 and under” then keep it that way. Us toddler parents use it as a safe haven from the oblivious-to-others older kids who run around playing God knows what and trampling our toddlers. Yes, I will tell your child nicely to watch out for the little ones and that “this area is for smaller kids”. Why would I correct someone else’s child? Because clearly their parents haven’t told them.

It’s really not that hard. It’s very basic concepts but the lack of common sense when on the playground makes it miserable for everyone involved. My kid cries because your kid is being mean, your kid cries because you’re not paying attention, you’re crying because your child wandered away. It’s a playground, let’s keep it fun.

-Kirstyn

Zulily – Unique Products

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

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

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

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

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

-Megan

 

LaLou Boutique: Pacifier Bib {Product Review}

LaLou Boutique is an adorable little shop on Etsy that is operated by Lacey. Lacey works as a Nurse, but loves to craft in her spare time. More specifically, she crafts precious products for babies. I was lucky enough to receive one of LaLou Boutique’s Pacifier Bibs to try out on my little guy. He has been teething (in reality, it seems like he’s always been teething), so he is constantly wanting to chew on ANYTHING and also has a never ending stream of drool coming from his mouth.  I was so anxious to put the bib on him because it is super adorable and it could now catch all that drool as he sucked and gnawed on everything, especially his binky!

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Here are just some of the PROS of the Pacifier Bib:

  1. The bib has an adjustable snap neck so it can be used throughout the infant stage and well into the toddler stage, as well (my little guy will be 10 months soon). It grows with the kiddo!  I really like the snaps as opposed to Velcro, because I know the bib won’t be pulled off in 2 seconds after it’s put on.

 

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  1. LaLou Boutique offers several other prints in this specific bib (you can even custom order). They are all super adorable. I tried out the white/black stripe. It’s gender neutral, which I love, and it has washed up well. It hasn’t stained or faded. The bib is made of soft chenille fabric with terry cloth backing.

 

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  1. You can attach a pacifier – Biggest perk! This bib sure beats the heck out of a typical pacifier clip. I found that the snap loop part of the bib could be used for toys or teething rings for my little guy too. It’s so nice knowing he isn’t going to lose his binky or toy – It will be right with him. This is perfect right now because he is so mobile or for when we are in the car and on the go. He has what he needs.

 

  1. With all the teething, sucking, and drooling, the bib seemed more than sufficient in its level of absorbency – thanks to the terry cloth backing I believe. My little guy wore it for several hours and his shirt remained dry throughout.

 

  1. Super reasonable price at $12.00 from the LaLou Boutique Etsy shop.

 

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The only downside to this product that I could possible think of is that when my little guy decided he did not want to use his binky, it would just drag across the ground as he crawled. This is not that big of a deal while at home, but if we were out somewhere else, I would not want all the dirt and germs getting on the binky. Once he is walking, this won’t be a problem at all.

 

Overall, this is a great product that I will continue to use with my kiddos. It would make such a good gift idea for any mom you know and their little ones. It is perfect for any little one who uses a bib, even if they don’t use a pacifier. LaLou Boutique has several other products (burp cloths, onesies, regular bibs, blankets) and even offers custom orders! Check them out!

 

-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.**

 

 

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.**

Moving a Family: Helpful Planning

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You may notice that I’ve been slacking at writing articles lately, and I promise, it’s not because I want to intentionally neglect BurritoBuzz! We’ve established such an awesome community here, and I’m thrilled to see so many moms connecting and helping one another, and finding some form of solace in our articles!

We plan on putting our home on the market in the next few months, and if you’ve never planned a move with a little… count your blessings. The insane OCD side of me is coming out full-force, worrying about things being in boxes, disorganization, temporary housing, strangers in my home for showings and their dirty shoes, if my cats will escape when showings happen, my yard looking like total crap after this winter, etc. etc. etc.

So, to make things less stressful for us, we’re taking our time. We’ve made a few plans that will hopefully make this all a bit easier. Here are my moving tips:

  1. Start packing as early as possible. Get rid of junk. If you aren’t taking it with you, trash it or donate it. Pack things that you are certain you won’t need, and LABEL those boxes accordingly (what’s in the box, and what room it’s going to in the new house.)
  2. Collect boxes. I’ve been collecting boxes for a year (and I have plenty thanks to my Amazon Prime problem.) Nothing is worse when moving than trying to scramble to find something that you otherwise throw away all year.moving-boxes
  3. Buy supplies for moving. Sharpies, packing tape, packing materials.
  4. Get a few cages for your pets. We don’t cage our two cats normally, but they like to escape. I want them to feel safe when showings are happening, so they need their own space. We’re putting the cage out early so they can play in it and sleep in it to get used to it. Also, showings sometimes happen quickly, so figure out a way to convince your pet to hop into that cage so that you aren’t rushing to find them and contain them.
  5. Decide on your time frame. We aren’t in a big rush, and want to wait for the house that is meant for us. We hired a realtor that understands that, and is willing to work with our guidelines.
  6. Figure out if temporary housing is an option. Because we have a baby, we decided that temporary housing is our last resort. Because of this, we’re saving some extra money to pay two mortgages for a time if we have to. We would rather buy a new house and take our time moving from ours than have to move twice with all of that baby stuff.
  7. Stock up. Make sure you have all of the baby essentials you’ll need when moving.
  8. Find a good system for your family for showings. If you’re doing a for sale by owner scenario, you’ll likely want someone to watch your LO while you show your house. If you have a realtor, plan on scheduling showings around naps and feedings so that you can quickly pack up your LO and go for a drive.moving-with-baby
  9. If you’re like us, we’re really lacking free time. We work a lot, so we need some hired help. We are hiring some landscapers to ensure that our yard is in good shape.
  10. Know your numbers. Make sure you aren’t making a rush decision when negotiation home prices, and know what you can and cannot financially do. Be firm in your decisions; when you have other priorities, like children, it’s easy to get frustrated and distracted from the ultimate goal of selling your home and buying a new one.
  11. List your providers, and their phone numbers. When you move it will be easy to quickly transfer everything during your LO’s nap time.
  12. Plan for child care the day of your move. Set up your nursery first, so that your LO can come to their new home and feel at ease. Moving can be difficult for littles, so it’s best to replicate as much of their typical surroundings as you can.
  13. If you don’t have enough moving help, hire a moving company. It’s an expense you won’t regret.

Enjoy your new home! The initial thought of moving can be overwhelming, and getting settled in is nothing less than a daunting chore. But once you’re in, you’ll be good to go!

-Katie

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.

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-Megan

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

The Wet Brush {Product Review}

This is by far one of the best gifts my nearly 3 year old has received. Her auntie is a hair dresser, so she knew The Wet Brush was a top-notch product. Mommy, on the other hand, had no idea there was a product on the market this awesome or we would have had a long time ago! My little lady has never really fussed or complained when we comb/brush her hair, but as she gets older, she wants to do it herself and her hair is only getting thicker and longer.

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This brush looks like any ordinary old brush, but don’t be fooled; this thing is a miracle worker! I could not believe the ease that this brush made it through my little girl’s messy hair.71JHo5LLGLL._SY679_ It wasn’t even necessary to use a detangler spray prior to using it. I cannot wait to tackle her knotty hair after a day at the pool or when we visit the beach this summer. The Wet Brush is advertised to “quickly and painlessly detangle even the thickest, most stubborn hair thanks to its revolutionary bristles.” The bristles are called “IntelliFlex” and are “designed to be ultra thin and flexible, yet still have rapid recovery memory to instantly bounce back to its original form. In addition, the ball tip bristles provide a massaging action that stimulates circulation at the follicle and is a proven benefit for hair health.” I know, I know, this sounds very high-tech for a “hair brush,” but I’m telling you, whatever it does, it works

My little one’s hair is long (never been cut yet) and thick, so after showers, playing all day, putting her foodie hands in it; it can be a mess when it comes time to brush it. The Wet Brush works with ease, no matter if her hair is wet, dry, sticky, or somewhere in between. She can use it herself without difficulty too.

 

You can find The Wet Brush at beauty supply stores or Target, but if you’re an online 71qIcPaZiaL._SY679_shopper like me, there are several places you can go. On Amazon, you can pick from TONS of colors and it runs about $8.95 there – totally worth every last penny. Here’s another link on Groupon where you can buy 2 for $12.99. You can also check out the official website for The Wet Brush where they offer free shipping on orders over 10 bucks. They have other options available too, including brushes for baby, combs, hair clips, and brushes for men, etc.

 

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I honestly do not have anything negative to say about The Wet Brush and would give it 5 out of 5 stars without hesitation. We’ve had it for several months now, it’s used on a daily basis, and it has held up perfectly. All of the bristles remain intact and they’re still sturdy as ever. I’m anxious to see how long it really does last.

If you or your little ones struggle with tangles in your hair, or you just need a new brush, I’m telling you, this brush is for you. You will be so glad you bought this product!!

 

-Megan

Finding Mary Poppins

fecsw3ihprcwbtbqpeln.jpgAt some point in our crazy journey of parenthood we’ve all needed a babysitter… Which means we’ve all realized just how virtually impossible it is to find someone who is the perfect fit, and who won’t break the bank.

After over a year as a SAHM, this momma has rejoined the workforce…which also means, I’ve rejoined the someone-else-has-to-watch-my-kiddo-force too.

So, how exactly do you pick the perfect sitter? Note: I have not personally used every resource listed in this post, so please do your own homework and research.

Try sites such as care.com or sittercity.com.  They require tons of information from people soliciting their sitter services, and most have background checks available to.

You can even turn to Facebook to the local buy, sell, trade pages as they often contain a vast amount of information. Do your research. Ask for references. Meet with the sitter prior to dropping your child off, and go with your gut.

Your best place to start would be writing down just exactly what you want in a sitter so you can narrow your search down.

  • CPR/SIDS/First Aid Certified

If you’re going to have someone with your child during the day, unless you’re going to wrap your kid in a bubble, it’s good to find someone who has been trained for the worst. Things happen. Even under the best care and watchful eye, things happen. If someone is prepared to deal with said “things” then it makes it all the better.

  • Cost

I have found that home childcare ranges from $50-$200/week. I always shoot for somewhere in the middle of that spectrum. It needs to be worth while for you to work. If you’re working just enough to pay for childcare, then what is the point of working? But also remember, you get what you pay for, typically.

  • Availability

Will the sitter be available when you  need them to be? Do they offer drop in care or last minute care? Nights? Weekends?

  • Meal Plans

Maybe it’s just me but this is a big one. If someone is going to feed my kid junk food all day and sugary juice, I won’t even entertain it. I’m not asking for free range chicken and bacon wrapped filets, but at least hit some different food groups other than “highly processed” and “full of sugar”

  • Experience with food allergies

If the potential sitter has no clue what gluten is, and your child has a gluten allergy, this is probably not a good match. I prefer someone who knows the warning signs of a real, true allergy attack and knows when action is needed.

  • Punishment tactics

This is a touchy subject. I am not so picky on who punishes my child…but better yet how they punish him. I had a potential sitter tell me that she has spanked children before. She has SPANKED a child that did NOT belong to her. I was baffled. I mean, I can deal with an age appropriate time out,  removal from the situation,  or even a stern “no”,  but lord help the person who lays their hand on my child.

  • Activity plan

Coloring? ABCs? Macaroni pictures? Something other than a TV on a constant repeat of a DVRd Peppa Pig? Ask. Seriously.

  • Duties

Are you expecting the potential sitter to come to your home and clean? Take the child to appointments, or play dates? Are you wanting them to help with bottle weaning, or potty training? This all needs to be conveyed and explained.

It’s hard enough to find child care. It’s even harder to find someone you trust.

Do your research. Don’t be scared to ask for references and follow your gut.

Your Mary Poppins is out there.

-Kirstyn

Empathy.

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Empathy.

“The ability to understand and share the feelings of another.” 

I’ve been struggling a lot lately to understand the nature of competitive parents. I’m sure I’ve done it, unknowingly, or maybe even knowingly. I’m not sure. If I have, I’m sorry.

I find myself really pushing to be understanding, sympathetic, and empathetic lately. But I can’t tell you how often I see parents saying things like “just wait until this…” or “we never had that problem” or “you’re doing it wrong.”

Parenting is hard, dudes. And ladies, who I also call dudes. Why do we have to make it harder by competing with each other? Why do we have to be so judge-y? What is so hard about respect and showing some kindness?

Can’t we just say “yeah, I totally get it! I hope your situation improves soon. That has to be hard”? Why do we have to put ourselves on soap boxes pretending our parenting methods are better than the parenting methods of others?

I have a friend, who shall remain anonymous. (I’m sure she might read this, so hey girl!) She hasn’t slept through the night in a year. I mean, every 2 hours she’s up. Anyone that knows us can tell you that our son has not been a good sleeper either, but usually not to that extent anymore. So, when I talk to her… yeah, I understand. Am I in the same boat? Not often these days. But can I listen, be supportive, and offer some encouragement without asking “have you done this_______?” Heck yes I can. I can say, I remember what it’s like to be that sleep deprived, and it is HARD and I hope that your little guy starts SNOOZIN LIKE A PRO STAT!

Empathy-Four-ElementsSo here’s my challenge to everyone parenting (including caretakers,) let’s get on the same level and stop belittling one another. Yeah? Just really think before you speak, or type on some forum where you can hide behind your computer screen. What would you want to hear? What would make you feel better?

We’re good parents. We have healthy babies. There are hard times, but hopefully we can mostly remember the good. We need a little understanding, and some empathy can go a long way.

Here are some smart kids talking about empathy. They get it. Let’s get it, too.

-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

 

Valentine’s Day, EVERYDAY!

For those of you who don’t know, Valentine’s Day is coming up this weekend. I think the Moms here with BurritoBuzz can all agree that it’s just another “Hallmark holiday” to us. Sure it’s great to celebrate it if that’s what you want, but to us, it’s the other 364 days of the year that matter most. We shouldn’t save our romance, thoughtfulness, and gifts for one night out of the year. Now I know finding time for you and your spouse sometimes is far and few between if you have little ones running around, but you have to make it work and find the time.

After talking with some of the Moms with BurritoBuzz, here are some of our recommendations to maintaining a happy, healthy relationship – not JUST on Valentine’s Day!

 

 

  1. Deliberate and scheduled date nights – It doesn’t matter if they are once a week, once a month, an overnighter, or just a couple hours away, make these happen. It is normal to feel guilty while you’re away, but you won’t regret it. You and your significant other need those moments together. It will get easier to be away from your kiddos. Try not to be on your phone texting, talking to your sitter ABOUT the kiddos while you’re gone either! There’s actually a really unique company called Datebox. It’s a subscription service where couples receive, “everything you need for a fun and creative date delivered to your door step every month!” One of the Moms with BurritoBuzz is going to be trying a box out here soon!!

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  1. Scheduled family meetings (just the two of you) – Take this time to go over that months budget, schedule, events, etc. (It’s virtually impossible to fight about money and not keeping each other in the loop if you have a meeting specifically about it). Use a calendar, phone apps, etc. to keep a sort of family command post. This way everyone knows when things are occurring, who is babysitting, when bills are due, etc.

 

 

 

  1. “It’s the little things” – Just taking the little bit of time to let the other person know you are thinking about them is worth more than any bouquet of flowers or box of chocolates in my book. Put something by the bathroom sink before you got work, put a note in the others lunch, leave their favorite treat in their car cup holder, etc. Even if it’s as simple as sending a text saying, “I hope you’re having a good day.” It just lets the other person know that they’re on your mind. Who wouldn’t love this!?!?

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  1. YOUR time – Every couple’s schedules are different, but I believe it’s extremely important to be able to devote some portion of your day to each other. It might only be a few minutes of peace in quiet in the mornings before the kiddos are awake or right after the kiddos fall asleep for the night. Maybe it’s a Saturday afternoon and both kids are actually asleep at the same time. Either way, its quiet time, and those moments are important. I look forward to the evenings after we get both kids to bed. It might only be a half hour some nights, but it is still time that my husband and I can talk about our days, catch up on our DVR, and just be together. We try to limit using our cell phones, tablets, etc. at this time. It’s not quality time unless your both present, and I don’t think you’re really present if you’re glued to your phone.  

 

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  1. “Divide and Conquer” – This applies to everything in your household. I think if you and your significant other can work together, not only will you get to spend time untitledteamtogether in the end, you won’t feel like you’re doing all the work all the time. Usually I’m the one who makes dinner, which I actually enjoy doing most of the time. In return, my husband is the one who cleans up afterwards. Bath time is another thing we split up as well. Sometimes we each do one of the kids and sometimes one of us has to do them both, but I don’t consider it my job or his job; we share it. We help each other get the kids ready to go in the morning before we go to work when we can. There are other chores we do not split evenly. For instance, my husband takes out the trash, mows the lawn, and shovels the driveway, while I’m usually the one who packs lunches. Bottom line – we work together and it works for us.

 

 

  1. Talk – If something is bothering you, your significant other should be there for you to talk to. They should be one of the only people who you can be completely open and honest with about anything and everything. The issue may or may not pertain to them, but either way, you should be able to talk to them about it. Sometimes just talking about something that has been on your mind and getting it off your chest will make you feel 1000 times better afterwards!

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  1. Listen – It’s so important to be honest and open with your partner about everything, but along with that is also being a good listener. Sometimes your better half just needs to vent, cry, or talk, and you need to be that person for them. Even if they had the day off work and were home all day with the kids, that doesn’t mean it was just “a walk in the park” kind of day. They might just need a few minutes to talk to an adult about their day filled with baby talk and Paw Patrol.

 

 

  1. Don’t forget YOU – Try not to forget about yourself. If Mommy isn’t happy and loving herself, it will show in her household! You have to find time for YOU. Whether it’s a night out with girlfriends, getting groceries alone, painting your nails; sometimes a little time away can have a big affect on your mood and emotional well-being. I know I can get caught up in day-to-day Mommy tasks – work, eat, sleep, take care of the kids, repeat. I have to remember to take a little bit of time for myself from time to time. IT IS OKAY! It’s important for my whole family!! Keep this in my mind when it comes to your spouse/significant other too. Make sure you allow some time for him to get away too – playing video games, going to a football game, etc.

 

 

  1. Be away from work – Technology is great, but sometimes that means that you are cellphoneavailable to your job 24/7. When you are at home make sure you are actually at home and not still finishing up things from work. Sometimes you can’t avoid it, but if you are doing it every day, it is time to make a change. You’re family needs you to be present when you’re home. Leave work at work.

 

 

I think I could go on and on with this list. I think it’s so important to not forget about your relationship with your better half. It’s not all over after kiddos, it can just get better, but not without a little thought and care! You don’t have to go on a big elaborate date and spend tons of money to let the other person know you still love them. Keep it simple and do it every day of the year!

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-Megan

Tears On My Stearing Wheel

WillowTree-Angels-CatBannerI’m 100% sure I met some angels today.
They had gray hair, kind eyes, slumped shoulders, they were holding hands, and bundled up ready to leave Target.
I didn’t know it, but they had been around the store with me, going through the same isles, seeing my morning unfold,  hearing my toddler’s screams, and I’m sure feeling the tension that was in the air, as I was trying to keep my calm.
I don’t even know what set BK#1 off.
She was being good and then all of a sudden she was screaming, shouting and pointing at something. I have no idea what, but she for sure was not getting it now. She never acts like this in public! I was trying to reason with her, trying to figure out what she wanted so we could talk about it, distracting her with talk of lunch and then seeing her Aunt later. NOTHING worked!untitled (26)
By the time I got to the check out {Normally if she acts out and it can’t be corrected we leave. I refuse to be embarrassed, reward her with an audience, and people trying to calm her, but I needed toilet paper and laundry detergent} she was full on loosing it. She took her shoe off and threw it at me. I caught it, placed it in the cart, leaned in close to her and said “If you do not stop right this second you are going to stand in the corner, in this store, in front of everyone”. She calmed to a small whimper, but still acting out. THEN the cashier asked HER if she she wanted a sticker! Ughhh mmm thanks for trying to help lady, but in our home stickers are rewards, and she is most definitely not getting one right now!
I replied kindly, because she really was just trying to help, “I really appreciate it, but no thank you. She has been yelling and not acting nice and made mommy very sad, so no sticker.
BK#1 lost it!
“Mommy sad??” There was no more screaming and yelling, and inaudible sentences, but weeping. Big, sad, ugly, heartbreaking tears.
I quickly paid and hurried towards the door.
Back to the angels.
I was getting her coat on her, covering up BK#2’s head (he was sleeping on my chest in the Tula), and Mrs. Angel touched my arm and said “You are doing the right thing, and you are an amazing mother, may we help you?”Free-Candy-Van.jpg
I was hesitant, but I told them “Thank  you, and absolutely you can help!”
Mrs. Angel grabbed BK#1’s hat and put it on her and grabbed the TP. Mr. Angel  grabbed the laundry detergent and the bags, and told me “pick up your baby and tell us where your car is.
My mind is programmed to be scared of someone following me to my car, but in this instance there was no fear, I was greatful beyond words.
We made it out to the car, I opened the back and they placed my items in, Mr smiled and grabbed Mrs’ hand, and she looked at me with the kindest eyes I have seen in a very long time and said “Keep doing what you are doing, you wont regret it, thank you for letting us help you. Have a good day!”

And off they went.

I wont ever see them again.

I got in my car and drove away, crying, (if you haven’t figured out from my other posts, but I am an emotional person, obviously) and listening to the soft cries behind me.

Raising a tiny human is really hard!

untitled (25).pngBut, in these days being a good person is too! I am in shock and awe of the kindness that I was shown today. I was raised to serve people. I was raised to do nice things for people who don’t deserve it. I was raised to do the good thing, even when no one else is!

We are surrounded by horrible bad things. We are programmed not to let anyone near us, not to let anyone help us. Its the world that we live in. We are just trying to get by and keep our LO’s safe.

I know all of that. I am well to aware of the bad things going on in our small towns. I know that those strangers could have very well stolen my groceries at least, followed me home, taken my child, etc. ….the horrifying list of things that happens in our world all could have happened. Be-kind.jpg

I choose not to live in fear.

I choose to serve, and let others serve me.

How am I supposed to raise wonderful, kind- hearted children if I never look for the good?

I encourage you to stay strong while you are disciplining your children.

I hope you find the calm and peaceful words that diffuse a situation.

Most of all, I encourage you to look for the Angels in your life.

Is it an old couple missing their grandkids? Is it in laws trying to be better grandparents? Is it parents LEARNING to be grandparents and letting you be the parent? Is it your husband bringing you coffee in the morning? Is it your wife folding all your laundry and putting it away so you don’t have to?

Look for the Angels, and importantly – actively and purposefully be an angel to someone else!

~Amanda

 

 

 

PLEASE parents, do this ONE thing!

As parents, we have tons of responsibilities. There’s work, household chores, bath time, grocery shopping, making dinner . . . I could go on and on and on. Our jobs never end and there are no days off. We always have to be on top of our game and ready to take on anything our lives or kiddos throw at us (sometimes what they literally throw at us). 

I feel one of the MOST important things on this list of responsibilities needs to be taking care of ourselves. I don’t just mean trying to eat as healthily as we can or trying to fit in some form of exercise a few times a week. I’m talking about seeing a primary care physician (PCP) regularly. This doesn’t mean you have to go to the doctor every week or every other month, but just go once a year for a full head-to-toe history and physical (H&P).

How many of you actually have a PCP?

I was totally guilty of not having a PCP before I had my kiddos. I went to STAT care if I thought I really needed to be seen or just went to the campus nurse when I was a student in college. I thought going to see my GYN for my yearly appointment was sufficient. It wasn’t until I graduated, got married, got my own job, and my own health insurance that I really made an effort to find my own PCP and go for a yearly exam. Luckily, my husband agrees and never put up a fight about also going.

For most insurances, an annual H&P with blood work is covered. It’s considered “preventive” care and encouragedso take advantage of it!! So many insurances also cover the yearly GYN visit and dentist appointments (these are so important too!!). Even if your insurance doesn’t cover it 100%, I’m sure a good chunk will be covered – you won’t regret looking into it.

It’s so comforting to be familiar with your doctors and to know that if there ever is an illness/problem/question (of course we hope there never is) you will know exactly who to call. Sometimes it’s tough finding a doctor in the beginning. Some won’t accept new patients, there’s new patient paperwork to be completed, and not all doctors are covered under every insurance company. Imagine having to go through all that when you really do have a problem and need to be seen. Find a doctor you like now while you’re healthy! Then, make it a point to see that doctor every year. What have you got to lose?

If you’re still not convinced, think about those little kiddos or grand kiddos. Think about your nieces and nephews. Think about your loved ones who really care about you and your family. Do it for those people. Those people need you, love you, and don’t want anything to happen to you. You owe it to them to be responsible about your health – see a doctor!

If you already are known to a doctor – great for you! Does everyone in your family go too – your spouse, your parents, and your siblings? You love and care about them too, right? Encourage them to do the same. It took a lot of convincing, but my husband and I had this discussion with our parents. We told them it was very important to us, especially since we were starting our own family. We want them to be around to love and care about our kids the way they did for us. Now, all 4 of them see a primary care physician regularly!! It’s a peace of mind for everybody, and didn’t cause any pain or suffering. It starts with a simple phone call.

 The U.S. National Library of Medicine refers to MedlinePlus and here they list several things to consider when choosing a PCP:

  • “Is the office staff friendly and helpful? Is the office good about returning calls?
  • Are the office hours convenient to your schedule?
  • How easy is it to reach the provider? Does the provider use email?
  • Do you prefer a provider whose communication style is friendly and warm, or more formal?
  • Do you prefer a provider focused on disease treatment, or wellness and prevention?
  • Does the provider have a conservative or aggressive approach to treatment?
  • Does the provider order a lot of tests?
  • Does the provider refer to other specialists frequently or infrequently?
  • What do colleagues and patients say about the provider?
  • Does the provider invite you to be involved in your care? Does the provider view your patient-doctor relationship as a true partnership?”

 

I know I’m probably adding to your already lengthy to-do list, but I promise this is one of the most important things you can do for your own well-being and your family. You won’t regret it and they will be proud of you for doing it!

 

-Megan

ABCs of Parenthood

Alcohol – Now that you’ve experienced your near 10 months of sobriety and been your hubby’s DD, it’s your turn! If you’re breastfeeding, it’s okay to take advantage as well, to an extent. Beer can even help boost your milk supply. After those long days and nights the first few weeks, you’re going to want to indulge a little, believe me! Even if alcohol isn’t your thing, I’m sure there is something that can help you unwind – exercise, ice cream, a good book, etc.

 

Breastfeeding – If you are able and want to breastfeed, this is going to be a big part of your life now that your baby is here. At the end of the day, do what is best for you and your new baby. Seek out support from friends, support groups, blogs, or a lactation consultant if you have questions or concerns. YOU can do it! The first few weeks can be the roughest, but don’t let that stop you. You’ll be glad you did it in the end. Plus, it’s totally convenient, saves money, and is super healthy for you and your baby.

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Coffee – If you’re like me, you will find that there will NEVER be enough coffee some days. Drink up! If you avoided caffeine while you were pregnant, good for you. Now it’s time to welcome it back! I look forward to my morning cup of coffee, whether I’m drinking hurriedly on my way to work or sipping on it cold after several hours of chasing my kiddos around the house, it still tastes good. Enjoy!

 

Diapers – Whether cloth or disposable, these will be a part of your life for quite some time, especially if you have multiple little ones. You’ll change a bazillion (thats an understatement) of them and get quite good at it! Sometimes I think of it as a game – how fast can I get the dirty one off and the new one on – especially with my newest little guy. I have to get him changed before he decides he’s going to pee all over us both.

 

Eating – Make sure you’re not only feeding your baby and your family, but you’re not forgetting to feed yourself. Mommy needs food for fuel. You might think you’ve eaten enough by eating your toddlers’ leftovers or grabbing a quick bite on your way out the door in the morning, but more than likely it’s not enough. Try to eat 5-6 small meals throughout the day if it’s too hard to sit down for 3 meals. Your kids keep you busy, but you need to make sure your eating so you have the energy to keep up!

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Fights – Pick your battles with your kiddos. Don’t argue over things that at the end of the day are unimportant. I know I haven’t even reached the peak of this because my kiddos are still little, but even with my almost 3 year old it has started. I’ve learned to not argue over the shirt she picked out or whether she has her shoes on the right feet but instead about brushing her teeth or holding my hand in a busy parking lot.

 

Giggles – There is nothing better than hearing our little babies giggle. Even though my oldest is going on 3, I still can’t get enough of her little belly laughs and the way her face lights up when she is happy and giggly. My youngest is 6 months old and in the phase where we can make him laugh now. I love hearing him and trying new ways to make him giggle at me.

 

Hero – I hope that someday my kids can say that I am their hero (or one of them). It’s actually something that I think about a lot and something that I strive to be for them. As their Mommy, I try to always keep in mind their best interest and to do things I would want them to be proud of me for. I want them to be able to look up to me as their role model. I need to be a positive influence and make good decisions in my life for them.

SuperMom

 

Inseparable – I didn’t leave my almost 3 year old overnight until right before her 2nd birthday. Am I crazy? Maybe just a little. I never had a reason to spend a night away from her so I just never did it. I’m inseparable from my kids, but at the same time I know and need to remember that someday I will have to let them go. I have to let my kids become their own individuals but that doesn’t mean I never, ever want to leave them!

 

Juggling – A great blog written by one of my fellow mommies here with Burrito Buzz. As mommies, we do all kinds of juggling! It’s an adjustment being a parent, but it’s the greatest adjustment we will ever adapt to. We aren’t perfect and being a Mommy is a lot of work, but we sure do know how to juggle it all in the end. You’re all pretty amazing!

 

Kitchen – You might be spending more time in here now that you have bottles and other baby items to wash which means your mobile little ones might be too. Make sure this area is safe. Make sure you have the cupboards and drawers kid-locked, especially those with sharp objects and harmful chemicals. We tried to keep at least one drawer and one cupboard accessible to our little ones so they could play in them with more kid friendly kitchen items. They love that!

 

 

Laundry – It is never ending, literally. The minute I feel like I’m all caught up, another load comes down the laundry chute. I’m so lucky that my husband and I share this chore, because it is time consuming. I wish I was better at doing like a load or two everyday instead of waiting and doing load after load all in one day. Maybe that way it wouldn’t seem like so much!

 

 

Mickey Mouse Clubhouse –Will this show ever go away!? I’m sure as my daughter who will be 3 in April grows out of Mickey Mouse, my 6 month old son will just be starting to like it. And the cycle will just continue – I’m stuck with it forever! We always have episodes saved in our DVR and it’s by far my daughter’s favorite cartoon. I guess there are worse things than hearing the Hot Dog song 5-6 times a day.

 

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Naked – Our little ones have super sensitive skin and much of the time they are dressed, so take advantage of the naked times and make sure their skin is still precious as ever! Check for any new skin rashes, bumps, bruises, etc. 

 

OutsideGet out when you can and when the weather allows it. I always want my kids to want to be outside playing. I never want them to be the kids that are inside glued to the TV sitting on the couch. The activities outdoors are endless. Some of our favorites at home include the swing set, sidewalk chalk, bubbles, and going for walks.

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Pack – I’ve become quite the packer. Nights before I work the next day, I always get everything packed up for me, my husband, and the kiddos. It makes it a thousand times easier getting out the door in the morning. I also always have a fully stocked and ready to go diaper bag. I try to have a small bag left in each of our cars too with the basic essentials so my husband and I both always have whatever we might need when we are out.

 

Quiet time – You will learn to value the quiet moments. Being a Mommy can be chaotic, overwhelming, and just plain busy. I feel like I’m in a constant rush, rush, rush mode; especially through the work week. That quiet time, whether it’s in the mornings when I’m pumping before everyone else in the house is up or at night when I get to get a shower by myself, uninterrupted, is precious time. Enjoy it, soak it up.

 

Responsibility – There is no greater responsibility than being a parent. Not only are you responsible for making sure the essential daily needs of your children are met, but you are responsible for being a positive role model and support system. It’s the best responsibility but also the most crucial.

 

 

Spouse – I am a firm believer in spouses working together as a team when it comes to family and their household. You have to stick together on everything – discipline, chores, good times, bad times – your kids will sense when you don’t see eye to eye. If you do have fights (because let’s face it, you will) do it behind closed doors and don’t take it out on your kiddos. But at the end of the day, stick together and love one another.

 

Toddler – Although a super fun stage of our kiddos lives, it also brings its challenges. My oldest is a toddler. It’s so rewarding to watch her constantly learn, grow, and develop into a little girl who isn’t a baby any longer. I can see her own personality more and more. With that brings opinions, arguments, and tantrums, but it’s part of who she is becoming. Even in the most trying of moments, I know some day I will look back and miss these times! Enjoy them.

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Unconditional love – There is not a better term to describe the relationship between parents and their kiddos. No matter how angry they make you or how disgusting they can be, we still love them. There will be days when they make you want to pull all of your hair out and nights where they won’t let you sleep, but we love them no matter what.

 

Versatile “able to adapt or be adapted to many different functions or activities” – This is very important as a parent with little ones running around. I have quickly learned since becoming a mother that I have to be versatile. My plans may not always go the way I envisioned and I may never be on time again, but I can’t let that get me down. What matters is that me, my husband, and my little ones are happy.

 

 

Water – It is the best beverage for you and yours kiddos. If you struggle with drinking just plain water, add some lemon or lime. My kiddos only drink juice on rare occasions because I think it’s important for them to actually like water. I didn’t grow up that way and it took me until I was pregnant with my first to really start to like water and drink it all the time. I hope my kids can be the same because water is so important!!

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XOXO – As a parent, there is NEVER enough of these!! I especially love the before bed hugs and kisses and when my toddler kisses my 6 month old. It just makes my heart smile! I also love the hugs and kisses from my husband. I think our kids need to see that lovable connection between their parents.

 

Yelling – It is so difficult as a parent sometimes to keep your composure and not go off the handle on your kiddos, especially when it is over something minuscule. Maybe you’re just having a bad day. No matter what, try to think about it first before you yell at your little ones. I think there are moments when you need to raise your voice to get your point across, but if all you’re doing is yelling; your kids aren’t going to listen.

 

ZZZZZZ Have you been missing this lately?! I’ve learned to greatly appreciate every little bit of “ZZZZZs” that I can get since becoming a Mommy, even more so the second time around. With my first kiddo, I could rest and nap when she did, but that is so not the case with baby #2. One of them usually always needs me. I find myself doing things around the house or watching my DVR on the off chance they are both napping because there is always something to catch up on!

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-Megan

Bella Materna Nursing Bra {Product Review}

I’m a breastfeeding mom for the second time now, and I still struggle with finding an appropriately fitting bra that is comfortable. I would say the majority of the time I end up wearing nursing camisoles with the built in bra, but I know this isn’t what is best. Recently, BurritoBuzz connected with Bella Materna, and I was able to try out one of their nursing bras of my choice. I decided on a Smooth Wirefree Nursing Bra. I’ve never been a fan of wires, so this one sounded perfect. I only looked briefly at other options through their website and this specific bra received 5 stars, which further sold me. Here’s my verdict . . .

 

The PROS

  1. Comfortable – So far, I’ve worn this bra to work (I work full-time as an RN and I’m always on my feet and moving), around the house, out running errands for a few hours, to bed, and even to do a small work out. Throughout every activity this bra was never uncomfortable.
  2. Bella Materna advertises this specific bra as having “spacer fabric cups for nursing pad coverage and a flexible fit.” I found this point to be true. I wore my fabric nursing pads in the bra and still found it to fit appropriately and comfortably. The nursing pads also stayed in place well within the bra.
  3. I found the bra to be sized appropriately. I find it hard to decide what size to buy once you start breastfeeding and your milk comes in; luckily I guessed right with this bra with the help of the sizing chart found on the website. I feel like the fabric and coverage allow for some flexibility so the bra still fit well when my breasts were fuller in the morning versus the evenings when they are less full.
  4. The bra is easy on the eyes. It was offered in two colors online, Rose and Black. I opted for the black. I think its difficult to find a nursing bra that looks “normal,” and this bra did that for me. The bra has a “vintage” look which I also liked.
  5. The clips on either side of the cup/strap are easily undone with one hand for nursing, but not too easily that they came undone on their own. I’m often wishing I had more hands when I’m getting ready to start breastfeeding my little guy, so I appreciated that I could undo the bra using one hand. This way I’m ready to go quickly when baby is hungry.
  6. I did not take advantage of this feature, but on the website, Bella Materna advertises, “Add the Racerback Accessory . . . turns any bra into a racerback bra!” I think this is an awesome idea and something unique to nursing bras especially. So definitely check this out if you’re interested!

 

The CONS

  1. I’m cheap. I thought this bra was overpriced for what it was. I have never been one to spend much on undergarments though, so others may not agree. I know it is difficult to find a good fitting nursing bra with the perks of it being a nursing bra, but I thought $78 bucks was pretty steep. My nursing camisoles from Motherhood Maternity are often on sale and at $24.98, a no brainer in my eyes.
  2. Although very comfortable, breathable, and flexibly fitting, I thought the fabric was too thin. I know most nursing mommas can relate to the firmer nipples we get with breastfeeding. I felt that they were still noticeable with the bra and a nursing pad because of the thin fabric.

 

Overall, I give the Bella Materna Smooth Wirefree Nursing Bra 4 stars. It met my needs in the areas of comfort, quality, ease of use, and appearance. I just found it pricey and the fabric too thin. If you are interested in finding good quality nursing bras, I would recommend atleast looking into Bella Materna, because they had other options on their site and the bra I sampled was of good quality. This company also offers a variety of other products for Mommas out there – loungewear, breast pads, and even breast pumps.  Right now, their website is offering a 10% discount on your first purchase by just entering your e-mail address and also Free Shipping in the U.S. Check them out!

 

-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.**

Teach me how to Potty Train!

Our first born is a little girl who some believe is the smartest little toddler they’ve ever met. For the longest time I believed this too. Don’t most parents? We all want to paint this picture of our kids being the next President, Olympic athlete, or rocket scientist. Let’s be honest, our kids aren’t perfect, and they are more than likely not going to be any of those things. That is OKAY. They have their meltdowns, tantrums, and can be completely and utterly disgusting, that doesn’t mean they won’t amount to anything later in life.

I came to this realization that our little girl wasn’t the brightest toddler ever when it came time to potty train. It’s easy, right? Take her to the potty every 20-30 minutes, give her a prize if she goes, buy her cute new undies, sing a “potty song,” and dance after she flushes. ANYONE can do that, right?

Wrong.

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We thought we would get a “head start” last winter while I was expecting baby #2 and we had a long weekend at home together to try to potty train our little 20 month old. We spent two solid days with her barricaded in the kitchen on the linoleum. Just her, Mommy, Daddy, and the potty. The cat wanted nothing to do with our little experiment. We had her wear cute new Minnie Mouse underwear, bought treats, and had the coolest potty for her to go on. She didn’t get it. She peed while sitting on my husband’s lap and didn’t care that she was standing in the middle of her very own puddle. She didn’t tell us when she went in her pants, or that she was wet. Not even an “uh-oh.” After two solid days wasted, we stopped fighting her to do it.

After the “long weekend” massacre in the kitchen, we didn’t push the potty on her. We would mention it here and there, took her in with us when we would go, showed her cartoons about using the potty, but decided we would let her take the lead. She STILL never showed interest.

It came time for baby #2 to arrive in July of this year, and the older sister was still yet to be potty trained. This meant TWO kiddos in diapers, twice as many wipes, and a busier lifestyle to even attempt to potty train her in. How was this going to be possible? Well, it wasn’t. 4 months after baby #2 and big sister still hasn’t figured out the potty training gig. She’s 2 ½ now.

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Immediately we think we have failed as parents. How can we not potty train her by now? We even got more serious about it while I was on maternity leave. We had her “parent trained.” We could put her on the potty every 20-30 minutes all day long, she would go, and her pants would stay dry, but the minute we let her try to tell us, she was wet. She can’t grasp having to tell us when she has to go or even taking herself to the potty on her own. It hasn’t clicked yet. She will continue playing in wet pants or pee right in the middle of the bathroom floor, she doesn’t care.

As parents, we can’t help but to get frustrated. We want our kids to be the most intelligent little humans out there. She knows all the words to “Twinkle, Twinkle Little Star,” can tell us her ABCs, but can’t remember to tell us when she has to pee? Come on! We get it stuck in our minds that a simple activity like potty training is going to shape our kiddos into who they will become as adults. If they aren’t potty trained by 2, then we’ve failed as parents.

Why was this my way of thinking?

Much like my previous blog, My Picky Toddler, potty training has taught me to accept that I am doing everything right for her and that eventually she will figure it out. Not every kid is the same and some kids just get things quicker than other kids. It doesn’t mean our kid is an idiot. It just means she’s not potty trained yet. She will be when she is ready.

For now, we are still not pushing the issue and we’re waiting until she shows us signs that she is ready to do it. It’s not worth our frustration to force it on her. It’ll happen someday and boy will we be ready with treats, undies, songs, and dances. Until then, I will look forward to the blog I can write about her actually being potty trained!

Do you have any tips that worked for you and your toddler when it came time to potty train?

-Megan