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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Book Review: Dreaming in Color {The Adventures of Oliver Poons}

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Author, Lauryn Alyssa Wendus, is at it again with a new children’s book featuring her star character, Oliver Poons! You might remember my previous review about Lauryn’s first book, Oliver Poons and the Bright Yellow Hat. If not, you can read it here! My daughter was nearly 3 at the time, but she really enjoyed the first book, so I was not surprised that she was excited to read another Oliver Poons book. Not only that, my younger son (16 months) was excited about the new “kitty book” too!

Lauryn does a fabulous job telling a simple, rhyming bedtime story about Oliver Poons and his pals working together to bring colors back into Oliver’s dreams. It’s a perfect story for little ones, because the rhyming keeps them interested. Kids are introduced to new animals and colors throughout the story, which is great, too. The same characters are brought back from the firsoliver-poons-dreaming-in-color-cover-600px-510x510t book of the series, so in our house, we often can’t read one book without the other. My oldest is into longer stories “with lots of pages, Mom!” nowadays, but she still remained interested in this book and I love that now my youngest can read along with us.

Lauryn’s mother, Lois Wendus, is the book’s illustrator and she does a beautiful job again in this second book. I just love the mother-daughter duo behind this series and their mission, “our products are designed to inspire a happy day and happy dreams for your child.” And it’s not only about their products bringing joy and smiles, but the Oliver Poons Children’s Company also supports children and animal rescue by donating a portion of their proceeds to organizations like Mission for Orphans, Inc. and No Kitten Left Behind. They also have a campaign right now (#YellowHatsforCats) where they donate a portion of their sales to various animal shelteroliver-poons-childrens-co-logos to raise awareness about animal rescue.

You can find both books of the series online in hardcover, paperback, or an ebook version. You can purchase the hardcover book for $19.95 on the books’ site or here on Amazon. There are other items available on the Oliver Poons website, too. Workbook learning activities, an interactive floor game, Oliver Poons artwork, and even the floppy yellow hat itself are available for purchase on the website.

These books would make a wonderful Christmas gift for any little one, especially those who adore cats like mine! You can feel good about giving these books to a loved one because not only are they receiving a fun loving, adorable read, but somewhere else another little kiddo or kitty will also be a little happier too!

Follow Lauryn and learn more about the adventures of Oliver Poons on Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram.

– 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.**

BottomZz Up Potty Training Kit {Review}

When we got the opportunity to review this product, I was super happy! C is what I like to call half potty trained. He will use the potty all day long if he is running around the house naked and if we’re out to dinner at a restaurant, he will ask to go potty. But our problem arises while at home, at the park, or anywhere else where is he preoccupied and focused on playing and having fun while wearing anything, a diaper, pull up, or underwear.

We’ve tried candy.
We’ve tried stickers.
We’ve tried ice cream.
We’ve tried what seems like everything.

He’s just not catching on. Part of it is lack of consistency on my part I am sure. Part of it is the week on/week off custody and his dad allowing him to still use diapers because it’s more convenient than having to do laundry in his eyes.

That’s where BottomZz Up come in.

download.pngThis system is amazing. Now don’t get me wrong, I had my issues with it and I will explain them in a second, but overall, fantastic! Is C 100% potty trained after a week with the system? No. Was there progress made? Yes.

Essentially what you’re looking at is the cloth diaper of the potty training world. The system offers cloth, washable, reusable training pants with an absorbent liner. The starter kit comes with a potty chart, stickers, a certificate, and a travel bag.

The Opening for the Liner. There is almost no wiggle room. I found that I was unable to get the liner in so it laid flat as I was unable to get my hand in to grab the other side and pull it through.

Sizing. C is an average sized toddler and I felt these were extremely small in the leg openings. This was part of the reason I couldn’t be consistent with him wearing them 24/7. They were far too tight on his thighs and he told me they were hurting him. When I took them off, he had pretty significant red lines where they were. There is no option (that I have found) with larger sizes when it comes to ordering.

Price. I think the pricing is a little steep. A box of 10 refill liners is almost $18 and a package of 3 underwear is nearly $50. If you want the whole starter kit, you would be looking at almost $100, but you only get 6 inserts. So automatically plan for another $18 purchase for more liners.

Reusable. I have a whole cloth diaper stash that I had for C and will use again for the next baby, whenever that may be. Not having to run to the store when you “run out” of diapers, pull up, etc., is super convenient.

Chemical free. 100% cotton undies and chemical free liners make it as safe and eco-friendly as it getsdownload-1Now, C peed in them the first time and realized that it was wet as it held the moisture in the underwear. We started bribing him with the stickers and he began going potty on the toilet. He kept them on during nap time and woke up soaking wet as they had leaked on the inner thighs. He had another accident in which they leaked in the inner thigh area too. We made due while at home, but I didn’t want to risk out in public with him in them if they were leaking. They do have a caveat on their site stating they may leak when sitting down, however, neither of the leaks were due to him sitting. But again, accidents happen. I think it has to do with the small gap between the fabric and the liner.

I think an All-In-One system would be a great change for BottomZz Up. Instead of having a removable liner, especially since you have to wash the underwear anyways, sandwiching the liner permanently between the fabric would possibly help stop the leaks and there would be no more struggle in trying to get the liner in.

Overall, I have to say 3 out of 5 stars for BottomZz Up. Innovative, semi-successful for potty training, but high in price and could use some tweaking when it comes to the liner. I would love to see some other sizing options!

– Kirstyn

**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.**

FunBites: Making Mealtime Fun

Toddlers are picky. I think it’s just ingrained in our DNA that when we’re between the ages of 1 and 5, we’re picky little turds. My almost four year old is beyond picky. The one and only food that she is guaranteed to eat is potatoes: french fries, mashed potatoes, tater tots, potato-filled pierogies and hash browns. That’s it. It’s really hard getting her to try
new foods or to eat anything other than potatoes. I’m guessing (hoping) it’s a normal toddler thing. I set out to find IMG_6803
something to help me get her to eat different kinds of foods and found FunBites. I reached out to FunBites and they were awesome enough to send me one of their Bite-Sized Food Cutter Sets.

FunBites is the first and only food cutter set that creates bite-sized fun for little ones! Each set included a patented curved, little finger safe blade cutter with matching popper (to easily pop the food out). It’s BPA free, dishwasher safe and made in the USA (which we love)! It’s CPSC children’s product compliant, making it safe for little ones 18 months and older. You might have seen FunBites on Shark Tank in 2015, too! I now remember seeing their pitch and thought it was genius!

We were sent Jackie the Dreamer, the orange triangle set. There are several designs available: squares in green or yellow, hearts in pink or red, triangles in orange or blue and limited edition Minions goggles! Once I got the cutter out of the box, I explained to my daugher what exactly it was. I said it cuts food, like sandwiches and fruit, into triangles. She immediately asked for a peanut butter sandwich and I happily obliged (remember, she doesn’t eat much of anything). I washed the cutter and made the sandwich then put the cutter directly onto the sandwich and rocked it back and forth, to make sure each part is cut all the way through. Once rocked enough, IiIMG_6805ned up the popper, pushed it down and popped out the triangles. It was so easy! I placed the triangles on a plate and my little one devoured them. She actually asked for two more triangle sandwiches! What?! She ate every single piece! I will be ordering the other shapes as well to make more creative dishes for her and her little sister once she’s old enough.

 

If you’re looking to spice up mealtime and get your picky eater to actually want to eat, try FunBites and get creative! They’re perfect for kids, parents, grandparents, schools and daycares, anyone who wants to add some fun to mealtime! You can even get your kids to help you in the kitchen and have them create a little masterpiece to eat. I give FunBites a 5 out of 5 stars. The price is right at $9.99, although I think a bundle of two or three cutters at a discounted price would be great to offer.  It’s easy and gets kids to eat. What more could a mom ask for?FullSizeRender (100)

Follow FunBites on Instagram, Facebook and Twitter to stay updated on sales and new designs!

– Casey

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

Silikids Silimap Placemat {Review}

The moms here at Burrito Buzz have sampled several products from Silikids over the last several months. You can read about them here – Siliskin Sippy & Straw Cupthe Silibib, and Silicone Bags & Spoons. I was able to sample the Silimap from Silikids which is a folding silicone placemat for kids. I was immediately intrigued by it and knew my 3 year old would be the perfect little person to demo it. She is always asking questions and
81d9PyA56+L._SY679_wanting to try new things, so I was excited to see what she thought of this product. Plus, I knew she would be honest!

The Silimap is a silicone placemat that folds up for easy storing. This placemat is compact once it’s folded (7″x 4.5″x 0.75″), so it can fit into any purse, clutch, or diaper bag for perfect on-the-go usage. It is also great to use at home – we took it outside and used it on our patio table. Another unique feature of the Silimap, is that it can be colored on with washable marker and then wiped clean. So, when your kids are getting restless waiting for their food, they can instead stay busy right on their placemat! The placemat is made of silicone, which keeps it from sliding around and perfect for messy kiddos like mine who are all over the place. 20160715_105458

More perks include:

  • Dishwasher safe – I will admit, I have not tried this with the Silimap. To me, it’s easier just to wash it by hand than have it take up a bunch of room in my dishwasher
  • Available in two colors: clear or “sea” blue and large in size (18″x 14″)
  • Perfect learning tool featuring a geographic map of the United States
  • Can be drawn on with washable markers
  • 100% silicone – making it not a harbor for bacteria, BPA and DEHP free, resistant to high temperatures and hypo-allergenic

I was overall pleased with this product. My only complaint would be that it did not clean up as easily as I thought it would. I will be honest; I’m not certain how “washable” the markers were that my daughter used on it. I ended up soaking the placemat in soapy water and it came clean. My 3 year old really did enjoy being able t5FnjE1uVo color on it. It was perfect for her to use while I was getting her lunch ready and I can teach her about geography in the process – win!

 Check out Silikids to purchase the Silimap for $14.95 and to see their other unique products! You can also purchase the Silimap on Amazon by clicking here: Silikids Silimap.

– 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.**

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

Letterkandy Jewelry {Review}

I’m a woman, I love jewelry. Who doesn’t? But there is nothing cuter than jewelry for children. I love imagelittle bracelets & necklaces for kids and they look so adorable wearing them. If my three and a half year old didn’t try and pull everything off with such force, she’d wear at least a bracelet every day (but I don’t like broken jewelry). I found LetterKandy on Instagram and fell in love with the kid friendly charms and customizable designs. We received the cutest bracelets; my daugter’s has the quote ‘I solemnly swear I am up to no good’ which totally fits imageher and mine has my initial, ‘C’, on it (I’m a sucker for monogram anything!). She loves that we match and has yet to try and yank hers off (it’s a miracle!).

LetterKandy is owned by Amy Whitman, the mother of 2 boys from New Jersey. All of her fun and imageunique jewelry is designed and
handmade in her studio. She can customize charms with up to 55 characters – the possibilities are endless! Her necklaces and bracelets are super affordable (starting at $25 for bracelets and $35 for necklaces) and colorful, as she likes to say they’re FUN jewelry, not fine jewelry. 😉 There are also adult sizes so mommies can partake in the fun! Add a charm with your child’s initial, name or birthdate for imagecustomized ‘mom’ jewelry – perfect for upcoming Mother’s Day! Changing the charms are super easy, too. Just wiggle and they’ll slide off to change up your style!

Amy is so kind, she is offering a promo code for 10% off our Burrito Buzz readers! Just enter code: BBUZZ for your discount! Follow LetterKandy on Instagram @letterkandy, on Facebook – Letterkandy and on Twitter @letterkandy for upcoming sales and previews of new designs! Visit www.letterkandy.com to order!

– Casey

 

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

Pacidose {Product Review}

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

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

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Here were some other benefits I found with the Pacidose:

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

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

 

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

 

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

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

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

 

-Megan

 

 

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

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

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

Mom-Guilt-6

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

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

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

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

 

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

child-injury

 

-Megan

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

Honey Huggers {Product review}

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The moms here at BurritoBuzz recently connected with Honey Huggers, and two of us tried out their padded leg warmers. You can find them on social media or their website. They have man different styles, and a few different products to choose from.

 

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Pros: These padded leg warmers are ADORABLE! All of the patterns you can choose from are pretty stinkin’ cute, and I would have been happy with any of them! They are very soft and stretchy, and don’t need worn in to be comfortable for your baby.

Most of the patterns offered are gender neutral, so they’re perfect for hand-me-downs.

Made in the USA!

Fit is great for slender babies.

They wash and dry very nicely. They kept their shape and didn’t fade.

One of the little babes who tried out this product isn’t quite crawling, but the little padded knees on the Honey Huggers are providing him enough traction to be up on his knees longer before he collapses. He should be crawling before we know it with their help!

 

Cons:  When we were talking with Honey Huggers they were talking about adding another size, and we believe that is a must! Even though they stretch and you can make them fit, it’s not a comfortable fit. cee5b2db8e3f850f535ff95cac261e91_1024x1024.jpgThey slide down to the baby’s knees the second they start crawling, if you have a larger baby. We kind of wish the padded knees could just be added to a pair of pants for our chunky babies!

Several of us mommies have recently tackled potty training with our little ones or are doing it presently. If Honey Huggers does add another bigger size of leg warmer, it’d be perfect for our toddlers too! Not having worry about getting pants down with undies to go potty would be really nice! Right now, its just too cold to let them go in their birthday suit.

Overall, we give this product 3 out of 5 stars. We think it’s a great idea for new baby crawlers out there, but has room for improvement with the sizing. One thing is for sure: they’re super cute!

 

The Honey Huggers website also offers leg warmers without the pads, bibdanas, and bundles with both. Right now the unpadded leg warmers are only $6!HoneyHuggersGoogleInstadeal_330e1f8f-0e8a-47db-ba95-84560ae76896_1024x1024.jpg

 

-Amanda & 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.**

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

One and Done

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It is not okay to guilt people into having children ever. Under no circumstance is it acceptable to make a person feel like a lesser person for having no children, a lot of children, a few children, or in my case… one child.

One, single child.

One amazing, beautiful child.

He is not “just one.” He is not EVER to have the describing characteristic of being one of those only children.

He is our one and only. Our entire world, in one tiny human.

Making the decision to have children is very personal. Perhaps the most personal decision you will ever make as a couple. To anyone that elects to have no children, I commend you on fully knowing what you want in life.

My husband and I decided to start trying to have a baby a few years back. I hoped that I would have a few months to ease into the idea of possibly being a mother, but was in no way prepared for the year and a half it took us to actually get pregnant. It wasn’t easy. (You can read more about my infertility struggle here.) I was in denial that we might not have children. I didn’t want to see doctors, and flat out didn’t want to deal with the fact that we might need some intervention (thankfully, though we waited some time, we ended up pregnant on Vitex.)

Those that knew we had been trying to get pregnant were few. The pressure to have a child when people know you are trying to get pregnant only increases the stress (at least it did for me.) Month after month of saying “no, not yet” really wears on you. And the people that say things like “just relax and it’ll happen” or “it’ll happen when it’s supposed to”… not helpful. Actually really frustrating. Just remember, you don’t know who is fighting a silent battle– who is trying to get pregnant, who is unable to get pregnant, who has lost angel babies. You don’t know.

So, assuming to understand an individual’s reproductive abilities or personal choices is something that has to stop. It has to. I’m guilty– and as much as we struggled, I’ve definitely asked friends if they think children are in their future. I try hard not to now, because I know how painful the question can be.

So there’s a high probability that my husband and I are one and done. Both by choice, and by reproductive ability. Why? 

  1. We know that we can financially provide for our one child. The rising cost of health care, education, housing, food, etc. is sometimes difficult to stomach. I want to leave him better off– not just financially, but with more opportunity. I don’t plan on having a spoiled single child, but I do fully plan on giving him every opportunity I  can.
  2. We had a hard time having one child. I’m content with one. More than content, I’m beaming that we have a healthy child. So, I’d prefer not to think we might be able to have a second to only be disappointed and unable.
  3. I’m not worried about my son’s social ability as a single child. He has cousins close in age,  and we fully plan on giving him plenty of social opportunities.
  4. We had a very difficult labor and delivery. My son had his umbilical cord wrapped around his neck, and we are lucky he is here. You can read about that story here. My postpartum weeks were also marked with some post partum blues (those hormones… whoosh!)

Things that people with single children don’t want to hear?

  1. Aren’t you afraid of him being alone when you and your husband pass away some day? Answer: No. Having siblings doesn’t mean you will be close with your siblings. Financially? I hope to plan for any financial situation so that he isn’t left with all kinds of loose ends to tie up. I know that he’ll have other family, friends, and hopefully a family of his own someday.
  2. Won’t he be spoiled? Answer: I plan on teaching him the value of a dollar and how to work hard for what he wants. That being said, money can buy opportunity, and if I can help him here and there with things such as schooling, I will.
  3. THE WORST: What if your child passes away? Then you have no children. Answer: This question is ridiculous, so please don’t ever ask it. Having other children doesn’t mean you won’t miss your child that has passed away just as much. It doesn’t. You don’t have children to be “backup children” in case something happens. I treasure each day with my son, and that will never change.

So here’s the thing: treat everyone as if you don’t know what their story is. Just simply not asking unless the person on the receiving end brings it up or wants to talk about it. Listen to them. Try to be understanding. Step into their shoes. Children are a beautiful, amazing gift. Children aren’t for everyone. And, children aren’t always easy to have. Simple understanding can bring us a long way.

-Katie