Adorable Emoji Valentines {Free Printable}

Now that my four year old is in school, I look forward to her little holiday class parties. I volunteer to bring things in for each one and volunteer to help in class for at least one party throughout the year (this year I’ll be helping with their Easter party, last year was for the Thanksgiving party). And even though she’s only in preschool, the parties are still super cute, and I totally turn in to a PTA, Pinterest-obsessed mom when a holiday rolls around.

I know it’s early, about 2.5 weeks away, but I couldn’t help myself and started thinking about her Valentines. Scrolling through Pinterest, I saw an adorable Emoji valentine that I knew my daughter would love (she’s newly obsessed with “mumojis” as she calls them). I showed her the picture and she gave me the biggest smile and declared those were her valentines! So I went to work and made my own:image2-4I used my HP printer to print the valentines on 110lb white cardstock so they wouldn’t be flimsy when the chocolate heart eyes were attached. My paper trimmer helped so much to cut them, as I am horrible at cutting with scissors. I cannot cut a straight line for the life of me. I used Hershey hearts for the heart eyes. They’re the perfect size, not to mention absolutely delicious! I used double-sided tape to attach them which holds them on really well. Lastly, I helped my little one sign her name and that was it! They’re simple, really cute homemade valentines! She’s super excited about them and she can’t wait to hand them out to all of her friends at her Valentine’s Day party!

Supplies

  • Printer
  • Cardstock
  • Paper trimmer or scissors
  • Chocolate hearts
  • Double-sided tape
  • Pen

Print your own Emoji Valentines for FREE here!

– Casey

**I saw similar emoji valentines on Pinterest, but I made these myself.**

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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.**

Save Your Sanity with Color Wonder from Crayola {Review + Contest}

Coloring with my cousins is one of my favorite memories as a kid. Growing up, we would lay down a blanket (as to not color on Grandma’s white carpet) and we’d color for hours at family get togethers. Now that I have kids, I want to foster their love of coloring, too.logo-img My four year old loves to color but doesn’t seem to understand that markers and crayons are to be used only on paper, and not the walls, the floor, her toys, and herself. We can all agree that Crayola makes the best art supplies and there’s a new reason why I adore this company: Crayola Color Wonder Mess Free Coloring. All Magic, No Mess is their slogan and that’s exactly what Color Wonder is.

We received a package from Crayola filled to the brim with different Color Wonder products. I was explaining to my daughter that the markers only color on the magic paper and I told her that she could evdownload-3en color on the couch (meaning that she could take one of the coloring pads and sit on the couch to color), she of course took it as she could literally color on the couch. Thank goodness they’re magic and my couch is still intact with no marks! Each set comes with an 18-page coloring pad and 5 different color broadline markers that can only color on special Color Wonder paper. There are so many different Color Wonder products! They offer a ton of different character coloring book sets so little ones can pick their favorites, Paw Patrol and Frozen were a huge hit with my daughter! There are also finger paint sets, stamper sets, travel sets which are perfect for travelling and long car rides, art mats and totes, and muchfe026fb3-7366-4904-92d5-be181660d5de-jpg-_cb307702319_ more. Check out all of the Color Wonder products here! If you spend over $30 on Color Wonder products, you automatically get 30% off your purchase, no code needed!

I am incredibly thankful for Color Wonder markers! I hardly ever let my daughter color with markers, well, because they’re markers. I have OCD and a baby, so I can’t spend all day scrubbing marker off everything she decides to color on. We stuck with crayons for so long but now I can feel confident about leaving her alone with Color Wonder markers because I know I won’t come back to her with her face colored pink and the table purple and blue polka dots (yes, it’s happened before). It doesn’t color on skin, fabric, or furniture, and sets start at just $7.99. What more could parents ask for?

Be sure to follow Crayola on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and Pinterest for updates, new products, contests, and more!

Speaking of contests, Crayola is having an awesome contest on Instagram! It’s super easy to enter, just post a picture of your child’s messy moment that could have used a Color Wonder intervention on Instagram. Tag the photo #MessyKidsContest and tamessykidscollage2g @crayola in the comments to receive one entry! Winners will be chosen weekly until November 21, 2016 when one grand prize winner will be chosen. Learn more about the #MessyKidsContest here and read contest rules here.

  • (6) Weekly winners will win $250 in Color Wonder product.
  • One Grand Prize winner will win $1,000 in the form of a check.

What are you waiting for?! Head over to Instagram and enter to win now!

– Casey

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

My New Favorite Subscription Box for Little Ones: Bumby Box {Review}

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I love subscription boxes. It feels like my birthday every time one shows up at my door because you never know what you’re going to get (kind of like a box of chocolates, am I right, Forrest Gump?). I’ve gotten so many subscription boxes over the years for myself, our dog Mesa, my husband, and of course my kids. My favorite boxes to get has to be the latter, because I love all of the neat products they offer. My girls come before myself (I’m sure any mom can agree) and are spoiled as can be, so they have gotten quite a few bumby2boxes from several different companies. They all had different kinds of products and I liked each for different reasons. But I just received a complimentary subscription box from Bumby Box and I was completely blown away with the products we got in it!

Not only was our box amazing, but the company itself is awesome. Bumby Box donates toys to non profit agencies that provide shelter and childcare to families when they need it the most. They also only work with and promote environmentally sustainable companies that treat their employees fairly and pay them fairly, too. Bumby Box focuses on child development and each toy that is sent is supported by child development research. The toys are safe; they’re free of phthalates, PVC, BPA, and other harmful plastics – I love that I don’t have to worry about harmful chemicals, and they are also careful to only select toys that are manufactured with water of soy-based inks and bumby3paints to their safe to play with and for little ones put them in their mouths (which we all know will happen).

We received our box almost two weeks ago and I opened it up as soon as it was dropped off (like I said, it feels like my birthday when I get a subscription box – they should be called surprise boxes instead), my daughter was actually still at school. I kind of felt bad but I was eager to see what she got! We got a super cute and fun Haba game called The Little Orchard that’s actually made in Germany. Here’s how to play: there’s a raven that loves the cherries hanging on the tree (there are 5 of them) and there are 5 spaces to the tree. You roll the dice with pictures of flowers on it and whichever flower appears, you flip over one of the matching tiles – one will have a picture of a cherry on it – which you then pick a cherry and put it in the basket, one will be have a raven on it – you then move the raven one spot closer to the tree, and one will have a sleeping animal on it – you then have to be very quite not to wake the animal up (my four year old prefers to yell at it to wake up). The idea is to pick all the cherries before the raven gets to the tree. I love it because it helps with memory, you have to remember where theimg_2585 raven and sleeping animal tiles are so you know not to pick the raven. It also helps with recognizing and naming the colors of the flowers and it’s a game that everyone fries to find the cherries together, so it helps foster the “we” concept. It’s for children ages 3-8 and can be played with 1 to 4 players. It’s one of our favorite games to play together! 

We also received the cutest little mailbag from Child’s Cup Full, a company that offers educational children’s toys handcrafted by refugee and low income women artisans in the West Bank. At their artisan center, they train and employ talented women to make beautifully handmade educational toys. I love that they’re empowering women who live in such a male dominated part of the world. The little mail pouch is my daughter’s favorite toy that came in thebumby4 box. It’s adorable and comes with little felt envelopes that can actually fit little letters or objects in and close with Velcro. The letter and envelopes even have a “stamp” sewn in the top right hand corner. She loves walking around and giving us our mail! Check it out the mailbag here and see the rest of Child’s Cup Full’s spectacular toys here here!

The final product in our box may be the coolest one in the box, So Awesome’s Emotion Wallet Cards! The wallet cards feature 36 photographs and 36 illustrations of different children showing how we’re feeling today. My daughter loves looking at them and going through and tell me what each picture shows, like the little girl is sad, or the little boy is angry. The deck is durable, non-toxic, educational, and perfect for kids of all ages. They’re intended to show children a wide range of emotions and to help strengthen social-emotional skills. The deck can easily be attached to a diaper bumby5bag, backpack, or a stroller so they can be taken anywhere. We like to use them when we’re waiting a the doctors or in line at the store, they make a good distraction for my 4 year old. Be sure to check out all of their amazing Wallet Cards (they have bundles, too) and products here!

This is the most thought out children’s subscription box I’ve ever seen. I feel like everything was chosen specifically for my daughter and I love that. You can check out past boxes to see what other products have been sent out to get more of an idea for what you can expect in a future box. I highly recommend Bumby Box and they will make great gifts for family and friends! To sign up for your own box and to see what I’m raving about, use code BUZZ10 for 10% off your $49.95 one month subscription or save with a 3 month subscription for only $99.95! Deliveries can be skipped at anytime, so you can choose when you want to get your box! Click here to sign up!1465568479

Follow Bumby Box on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter for special promotions!

– Casey

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

Mommy Must-Have: Milk Snob Cover


0f0fc5bebb3831133f6e526d36706b78I live in Ohio and the winters are cold. My first daughter was born in September, so she was tiny going into the winters months. It was a pain going out with her because you have to keep babies warm, but you can’t them in winter coats in their car seat (it’s unsafe to put little ones in puffy coats and strap them into their car seats, learn about it here). My youngest is almost 7 months old and can be moved to a convertible car seat, but I’m going to keep her in her infant seat during the winter because it’s easier to keep her warm and cozy, especially with our car seat cover from Milk Snob (that also doubles as a nursing cover and shopping car cover).

Milk Snob was created by Melanie Disbrow, a mom of three who moved to the US from Germany in 2006 after unsuccessfully finding a practical and fashionable car seat cover. It’s added nursing cover led to the design of the first patent pending multi functional cover on the market. Milk Snob offers beautiful modern swaddles, as well as their covers and drawstring multi functional nursing covers. Based in Dallas, TX, the Milk Snob continues to create beautiful and functional products for families.packagingcover1_5a985575-a63b-4921-ad77-0dcd79349331I desperately wanted to try a Milk Snob cover and was so excited when they offered to send one for me to review. The one I used with my oldest daughter is a very popular “free” car seat cover that is thick, doesn’t circulate air at all, and you can’t see baby unless you flip open the front. The Milk Snob cover is pretty much the best cover I’ve ever seen on the market. It’s made form a thin, breathable stretchy fabric that’s also modern and gorgeous. It fits on any infant car seat and I love that I can peek in on my little one from the top and that she can see me. It also protects baby from unwelcome touching and staring while ozu36285060_main_tm1456178349ut in public as we all know that strangers seem to think it’s okay to touch a random baby. And if you use a cover while nursing, this will actually be a welcomed fashion accessory because the prints are simply stunning. Now that my daughter sits up in shopping carts, this cover is perfect to keep her safe from yucky germs because she puts her mouth on everything, so it’s nice to be able to keep crazy illnesses out of her mouth! It’s so easy to use, it stretches in every which way but doesn’t stretch it out.

If you’re looking for a nursing cover, car seat cover, and shopping cart cover, definitely check out Milk Snob! You can spend a lot of money buying three different products, but at only $36, you’re getting a 3-in-1 cover and it can probably be used in many more ways. And with 37 different prints and colors, it’s hard to choose which one to get. Check out all of the amazing products Milk Snob has to offer and buy yours hereimg_1861_srgb!

Don’t forget to follow Milk Snob on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram to stay updated on sales and new releases!

– 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.**

Barbie Lied

animated barbie childrens artA good number of us spent our youth playing with Barbies. Making them get married and have babies. They lived in their colossal Barbie Dream Houses, drove around their expensive Corvettes, and Barbie stayed home with the kids all while wearing her pearl earrings, with perfect hair, and perkier than ever boobs. Ken was rockin’ six pack abs and always brought home the bacon, all while maintaining their seamless landscaping. To say that Barbie didn’t prepare us for real life would be the understatement of the century.

Where is my mansion?

Why isn’t my hair perfect every day?

Where is my endless wardrobe?

Why is Barbie so unconcerned about her finances?

Why does my yard look like it’s straight out of Jumanji?

Barbie influenced us to believe that life was going to be the same for everyone. That we would all grow up to get married, have babies, and live the “American Dream.” Looking back, I wish someone had burned all of my Barbies and said “this isn’t real life.” Not only are many millennials not following Barbie’s lead, but we’re also coming to the realization that Barbie was a huge liar.

I am a millennial and in all reality, I followed the typical trajectory for a young twenty-something. I finished up my bachelor’s degree, got married a few months later, traveled a bit, bought a house in the city, and had a baby. I am the cliché of life. And while there might be some Freudian-subconscious-Barbie-impression shit going on somewhere deep in the darkest pits of my brain, this life is truly what I wanted, which is totally not to say that I don’t dream of what other versions of me I could have been at times. Could I have gone rogue and lived in South Africa or been a journalist for a prime time station or been a tattoo artist and shaved half of my head and had sweet ink up and down both arms? Definitely the latter. And, a tattoo sleeve could still totally happen sometime in between mom groups and my white collar job. 

But what Barbie didn’t prepare me for is the emotion that comes with changing who you are when you become a mother. Barbie convinced me that nothing changed. She didn’t teach me that my “mansion” (aka- century home that needs work) would collect dust. That my new tiny human would actually spend most of his first year not sleeping and spitting up on me. And that Ken would also be exhausted and that the Corvette would probably be more like an unwashed SUV with maximum storage for a stroller and baby necessities. Worst yet? Barbie had no less than 30 pairs of heels. Where are my designers shoes? These days, I care so little about heels that I spend most days in a nice pair of Dr. Scholl’s flats. Attractive, I know.

Barbie didn’t have postpartum hair loss. She didn’t have stretch marks or bags under her eyes from staying up all night. She was peppy and most certainly never wore yoga pants. She didn’t have an identity crisis when trying to figure out how to balance being a working mom. And she definitely never seemed phased by the criticisms that are christened upon us as soon as our tiny humans are born. Her bank account was endless and she never worried about paying for diapers, organic baby food, and tuition to preschool. Barbie’s house wasn’t littered with entirely too many toys. She and Ken somehow still enjoyed romantic vacations next to their Malibu pools and didn’t think twice about hiring a random babysitter to watch their kids.

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#MomLife

So here, in my late-twenties, I have serious misgivings about the impression that Barbie left upon me. And what I want moms to know is that it’s okay to be a hot mess. If this is the life you dreamed of, but you still don’t have it together day-to-day, welcome to the club. If you do have it together, please leave a detailed report in the comments so that the rest of us can figure life out. What I’ve learned in my year and a half of parenting is that you can be totally happy and also totally unprepared for life all at the same time.

And to Malibu Barbie, we say Bye Felicia.

– Katie

Nuun: Hydrating Electrolyte Tablets {Review}

Before I was a wife and mom, I was an athlete. I like to think that I am still an athlete some days, so when I discovered this product, my inner athlete was drawn to it. The convenience of a simple tablet put into water with tNunhe purpose of hydrating, replenishing electrolytes, and providing an energy boost was super appealing. I quickly contacted Nuun and lucky for us, they were eager to share their product with the BurritoBuzz Moms.

Nuun is based out of Seattle and over the course their 12 year history, have become “the #1 selling sports drink tab in the cycling, running, and outdoor specialty marketplaces.” I know what you’re thinking, we aren’t athletes. We’re moms. It doesn’t matter. Our sport is life. There are so many days where we feel like we have basically competed in the Olympics, just in the comfort of our own homes, surrounded by our rowdy kids. It is so important for moms to stay healthy and hydrated for our families and ourselves!

“Clean Product, Clean Planet, and Clean Sport” are the principles Nuun strives to abide by, which I think speaks volumes in a world filled with artificial products harming people and our planet. Nuun tablets feature plant-based ingredients, are gluten free, vegan, soy/dairy free, low calorie, contain no preservatives, and are packed with valuable electrolytes. Sounds legit, right? They’re not packed with sugar and artificial sweeteners like so many other products.

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Nuun offers different varieties based on your needs. We sampled Nuun Active and Nuun Energy. The products were similar, but the Energy variety does have green tea extract for an added caffeine boost. A friend of mine, who is a competitive runner, sampled the Nuun Active and said “it was perfect for both before and after my long runs” and “it actually tasted really good!” They also untitledhave a Plus for Nuun (can be added during endurance activities) and Nuun All Day Hydration. Nuun All Day Hydration is perfect for busy, on-the-go individuals, like moms, who want to make sure they are getting all the right minerals and vitamins along with the appropriate hydration to stay healthy for their families. I will definitely be ordering my own here.

You’re probably wondering what the Nuun tablets taste like. If you’re thinking this product sounds great so there’s no way it can taste good, you’d be wrong. I was very surprised by how much I enjoyed the different flavors. The flavors were very refreshing and not overpowering. Some of their options include orange, tri-berry, citrus fruit, and lemon lime. When you purchase a Nuun tube, you get 10 tablets. Each tablet then goes on to dissolve in 16 oz of water. My only complaint would be that the tablets do take a few minutes to completely dissolve, so be patient! But it’s well worth the wait!

You can purchase Nuun and read all about their mission and products by visiting their website here. They also have an awesome comparison of all of their different products on this page. Nuun is also available on Amazon – Nuun Active, Nuun Energy, and Plus for Nuun.

Don’t forget to follow Nuun on Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook for updates on products and sales

– Megan

**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.**

Freida’s Pantry is now available in the US!

Like most new moms, I hardly had the time and energy to eat when my first daughter was born. I quite literally lived on a couple cans of Redbull a day. I got back to my pre-baby weight super fast, and even lost about 15 pounds more on top of that. I hadn’t been so small since my freshman year of high school and it happened in a really unhealthy way. When you have a newborn, finding the time and energy to eat just doesn’t happen. Instead of eating when you get free time, you choose to do the dishes, laundry, or if you’re smart, you’ll take a nap. I can’t image if I had been breastfeeding. You burn so many calories when you nurse, so you have to eat. That’s where Freida’s Pantry comes in! I recently found out this UK company is launching in the US today and I had to share their delicious nutritional bars with our readers!

Freida’s Pantry bars contain a mix of grains, nuts, and super seeds that are rich in vitamin B that help with energy production. The bars provide protein which keeps you feeling fuller, longer, and is a quick and convenient snack that’s also good for you. For breastfeeding mamas, they’re also rich in Omega 3 and “good fats” that have been shown to increase the fat content in breastmilk. The unique blend of seeds and nuts provide a variety of vitamins and minerals like iron, calcium, zinc, and selenium. The bars are wheat, soy, and dairy-free and are suitable for vegans.

  • No artificial additives or preservatives
  • Non GMO
  • All ingredients are ethically sourced

Three bars are coming to the US today, and they’re all so good!

Freida’s Pantry Feeding Food Snack Bar is perfect for postpartum and breastfeeding moms. It’s packed with superfoods and full of nutrients and good fats that help with energy levels (that we all know new moms need help with) and they keep you full longer. I love how convenient a snack bar is and the fact that it helps nursing moms fight hunger and tiredness and supports lactation makes it even more awesome! Ingredients: Oats, Almonds, Pistachios, lin seeds, Quinoa, Sunflower seeds, Chia seeds, fennel seed, raisins, golden syrup and sunflower oilfriedaspantry2Freida’s Pantry Super Charged Food Snack Bar – Goji & Fennel is so delicious! It’s super dense in several super foods that keeps energy up and provides much needed nutrients. It’s made up of 9 different super seeds, nuts, grains, and fruits. It’s the perfect start to your morning, whether you’re an expectant mom, a tired parent, working on your fitness, or just a busy, active person. Ingredients: Oats, Linseeds, Sunflower Seeds, Chia Seeds, Fennel Seeds, Almonds, Quinoa, Pistachios, Goji Berries, RaisinsbarrrrFreida’s Pantry Super Charged Food Snack Bar – Maca & Chia is equally delicious, but I didn’t try it. My husband got to it first and devoured it! He loved it! It’s made of a unique mix of superfoods that support fertility as well as energy levels and vitality. Again, it’s perfect the perfect snack for new moms and those in the pre-pregnancy stage. Ingredients: Oats, Quinoa, Almonds, Linseeds, Brazil nuts, Pumpkin seeds, Sunflower seeds, Sesame Seeds, Maca, Goji berries, Golden Syrup, Sunflower OilbarFreida’s Pantry bars are available in packs of 12 for $31.20, making each bar $2.60 which is comparable to other seed and nut bars on the market, but Freida’s Pantry bars pack such a big punch! The fact that they’re made for pregnant, nursing, and postpartum women makes them an even better deal at that price! Check out Freida’s Pantry website for more nutritional information, FAQs, and you can also order yourself a pack of bars and have them delivered right to your door!

Be sure to follow on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter to stay up-to-date with all things Freida’s Pantry!

– Casey

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

What is your parenting truth?

Parents aren’t perfect.

Sometimes it’s so painfully evident.

At BurritoBuzz, the intent is to make parents feel like they aren’t alone, to offer some guidance, and to show that parenting in its rawest form is pretty rough sometimes. The endgame: we all love our little ones so stinking much that we’d do anything for them. Most of us are just trying to be the best possible person for them every single day. Are all days perfect? Definitely not.

So we want to share some of our imperfections. We want to shine a light on the humorous side of parenting. Tell us your stories of your imperfect days. Your comical days. The days when you haven’t had time to shower and the T.V. is babysitting your kids. We want to hear it all.

We plan to compile an anonymous list of parenting woes and post it here on BurritoBuzz. So leave us your stories! Head over to our welcome page and at the bottom you can submit your truths.

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Freemie | Pump with Your Shirt On

When you stop bending your life…

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I just saw Bad Moms this week, and I relate on so many levels it’s almost scary…

All of the BurritoBuzz moms know how busy I am. I know that everyone is busy, and that “busy” is just a state of being when you’re in your mid to late twenties. Life doesn’t stop. And if you let it stop, you’re either 1. Dead. 2. Homeless or 3. Eating Doritos on your couch binge watching Stranger Things (no judgement). If you read this blog, you know that I take busy to a whole new level. I work, own a business, write for BB, hike, am a gym rat when time allows and raise the most beautiful, amazing 18 month old (in addition to somehow keeping a clean home). And sometimes, when things come up, I inconvenience my entire daily routine to appease others. I like doing things. If you’ve heard people being termed “do-ers,” that’s me. I can’t sit still. And while I like doing things, because it makes me feel fulfilled, sometimes doing things means bringing unneeded chaos into my life, out of the fear of offending someone by not doing said things.

But here’s the thing: outside of the things I have to do, I shouldn’t be bending my life unless I want to. Things that used to take precedence in my life have been moved to the back burner.

Need a card for a birthday party but it’s nap time? Too bad, we’re going to color a card instead of going to the store. (Aren’t handmade cards better anyway?)

Impromptu friend get together at my toddler’s bedtime? #WholeLottaNope Changing that tiny human’s sleep schedule makes everyone miserable. Want me to go out past 10pm? Also, a big fat no. With a toddler that gets up at 5am-6am, this mama requires sleep.

Want to have a huge family gathering, but it’s hot as shit and there’s nothing he’s going to want to do outside of ripping your breakables from your shelves? Hard pass.

My once feelings of guilt for not always saying “yes” have subsided. Because let’s face it, the sanity of my family is infinitely more important. And while I firmly believe that life shouldn’t stop when you have a baby and that you should integrate them into your typical life happenings, some things are just more hassle than what they’re worth. When life is a constantly revolving door of work, unpaid Uber driving for my toddler and trying to make sure that I at least have enough food in the fridge to feed him, the last thing I should be worrying about is the impression I’m leaving on others when I do or do not participate in events.Moms-funny21.jpg

So, my guilt? Gone.Thankfully, most of my friends and family remember the days of having small children and understand fully that we do what we can, when we can. We try to see everyone and participate in life, but they understand that life happens and that tiny humans are unpredictable. But to the occasional person that forgets these things, or just doesn’t realize how truly exhausting and long the days are, please forgive us. Our lives are ruled by tiny dictators and sometimes a nap for a grumpy toddler trumps the party that we missed.

– Katie

Sophie la girafe: A must for little ones

Teething babies are the worst. Plan and simple, teething sucks. Sometimes you get lucky and have a baby that doesn’t show he or she is in pain, so you’d never even know they’re teething at all. My first daughter was like that; you’d never know she was cutting a tooth because she was still happy-go-lucky like she always was. My second daughter is a whole different story. Of course every baby is different but she is reeeeally unhappy FullSizeRender (95)lately. She’s working on her bottom two teeth and she’s just a fussy, drooling mess. I’ve tried silicone teething necklaces and bracelets that she likes to chew on when I’m holding her. But when I’m not holding, I’m won’t leave her alone (while I do the dishes or laundry) with a necklace.

Ever since my oldest was born almost four years ago, I’ve seen little ones always chewing on a rubber giraffe named Sophie. It seemed to be a big hit with babies and parents alike, but I never took the plunge and spent the $25 to get her one (being a stay at home mom and only having one income, things were and still are financially tight). But with my youngest being a tiny teething terror at a young age, I reached out to Vulli, who makes Sophie la girafe, to collaborate with Burrito Buzz on a review. They were FullSizeRender (97)sweet enough to send us a gift set with a Sophie la girafe for my youngest and flash cards for my oldest

As soon as I opened Sophie and washed her, I handed her to my almost five month old and she immediately snatched her by the leg and starting gnawing on her head. Sophie was so easy for her to handle and actually keep a hold of. The way the giraffe is shaped, with its long neck and legs, it allows for little hands to grab any part of it and bring it to their little mouths.

Sophie also has the cutest little face; I think she’s just adorable! In fact, her face has stayed the same since she was born in France in 1961. She’s made of 100% natural latex rubber, which comes exclusively from Hevea trees growing in Malaysia. Sophie is an award-winning toy not only with little ones and their parents, but among the toy industry as well. My one and FullSizeRender (96)only gripe with Sophie is that she squeaks like a dog toy which drives my dog, Mesa, insane. My oldest runs around squeaking as much as she can to taunt him. I know that one day he’s going to snatch her and it’ll be game over for our beloved Sophie. But we’re going to enjoy the relief it brings my baby until then.

Sophie came in a gift set ($31.28) that included flash cards for my almost four year old. She’s starting her second year of preschool and we’ve been working on letters and numbers all summer and these flashcards are perfect to continue practicing! They’re quality made with bright and colorful pictures. The 26 cards each have a unique picture on them so she can familiarize with the alphabet (A is for Apple with a picture of an apple, for example). They’ll be perfect for when she starts spelling words, too! I love that I can use these cards with the baby when she gets a little older to learn objects, letters, etc. Sophie la girafe’s picture is on the left hand corner of each card, which little ones will love as they can learn with their Sophie!

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Sophie is definitely be a permanent fixture (until Mesa gets her) in our house. I just love how easy it is for the baby to chew on her and our baby actually gets relief. I give Sophie la girafe and the gift set a 5 out of 5 stars. It’s the perfect gift for both toddlers and babies and a great gift  for baby showers. I totally get the hype of Sophie la girafe now, our family just adores her! I really wish I would have spent the $25 a few years ago; I know my oldest would have loved her just as much!

Be sure to chIMG_4191eck out Sophie la girafe website, as there are many more amazing products; gift sets, teethers and rattles, early learning toys, and bath, mealtime and travel products to name a few! We also have a discount code exclusively for Burrito Buzz readers, use code BURRITOBUZZ10 at checkout for 10% off your purchase! {Code valid until 9.17.16}

Don’t forget to follow Sophie on Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter to stay updated on products and sales!

– Casey

**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.**

Freshly Picked Moccasins: The perfect shoe for little feet

Ever since I can remember, I’ve been obsessed with shoes. I vividly remember getting a pair of The Little Mermaid velcro tennis shoes for Christmas when I was almost four years old. I was in love with those shoes and literally wore them until my toes popped through thfp_profile_logo_black_grandee front. There are pictures of me wearing them with my toes busting out, but I refused to give them up. My daughter is the same exact way. She’s almost four and has a ton of shoes, far more than I own now (probably because I’d rather buy her shoes instead of a pair for myself). However, she had a little jumping-from-the-slide-to-the-couch-but-missed accident when I was 9 months pregnant this past March. She fractured a bone in her foot and the timing couldn’t have been worse. I was due to have a c-section a week after she got her thigh-high cast on that she had to wear for 3-4 weeks. We survived and she’s doing pretty good now, but she’s still doesn’t like to wear hard sole shoes, she says they IMG_3836hurt her foot. But she loves wearing her Freshly Picked Moccasins! I’m sure you’ve seen little ones wearing leather moccasins, thinking it’s a “hipster baby” fad but it’s not, these shoes are so good for little feet!

Freshly Picked Moccasins were created by Susan Peterson 7 years ago after failing to find a shoe that fit her son’s chubby feet. I have been following Freshly Picked on Instagram ever since my oldest was just a few months old and I have always wanted to get my daughter a pair but didn’t have the funds as a new mom (each pair is $60, but there are a few sales throughout the year where they are discounted). After getting a beautiful pair of moccasins for my almost four year old recently (pink moccs were a must), we are hooked! Whether you’re looking for a bold or subtle shoe for your little babe, Freshly Picked has you covered! There are so many colors and patterns to chose from and they’reIMG_3837 always releasing new designs. Seriously, it’s pretty hard to decide on what color to go with. The quality of the leather and craftsmanship of these adorable soft soled shoes is outstanding. The leather seriously molds to her feet, almost like a warm hug (my daughter’s words – “they’re hugging my feet!”) and the elastic band around the ankle keeps them on little feet. Soft soled shoes are perfect for little ones learning to walk, as they allow the foot to move naturally, but also protect delicate feet from harsh terrain.

I know I said $60 was steep for pair of shoes, but I will be buying a pair for my four month old when she starts walking. I know they’re going to be the best option for her little feet as she learns to walk. I love that the soles tell a story once they’ve been worn for a while. You can eventually see the outline of their little feet and remember all the places those moccasins have been and what milestones IMG_3833they’ve been a part of. Regular tennis shoes can’t do that.

My love of Freshly Picked has definitely grown since we’ve gotten our first pair. I’ve always admired Susan’s persistence, drive, and the story of how Freshly Picked was born; It’s never left my mind since I heard her tell it on Shark Tank. She spent an entire summer banging glass out of old windows her brother gave her (he owned a window company) so she could recycle the aluminum. With the $200 made, she started Freshly Picked. If thatfreshly’s not hustle and heart, I don’t know what is. This is the kind of company you want to be a customer of and watch grow, as I have over the years. Not only are the products on another level, but so is the woman behind the brand.

In case you need another reason to fall in love with Freshly Picked moccasins, we have partnered up to give a pair of moccs to one lucky Burrito Buzz reader! Just follow the simple rules below and head over to Instagram to enter!

  1. Follow both Burrito Buzz and Freshly Picked on Instagram (we’ll triple check!)
  2. Tag 1 friend in the comments
  3. That’s it!

Giveaway ends August 17, 2016 at 12pm EST. Winner will be announced on the original giveaway post on Instagram on August 17, 2016 by 1pm EST. Goodluck!

Don’t forget to follow Susan and Freshly Picked on Facebook and Twitter, too!

– Casey

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

8 Annoying Toys for Babies & Toddlers

When you become a parent, you also become an expert on all things that are annoying. It just comes with the territory. I think toy companies create the most annoying toys for babies and toddlers to drive their parents insane. Literally. Whether or not you buy these annoying toys, or if you try to keep them out of your house, they’ll still likely end up in you child’s toy box thanks to birthdays, holidays or from grandparents who love to spoil their grandchildren. As a mom to an almost four year old and four month old, I’m remembering all of the annoying baby toys my oldest used to have (and thought I got rid of forever) because they’ve once again popped up in our toy boxes. Here is a list of the most annoying toys (baby and toddler) according to me:

  1. Brilliant Basics Corn Popper by Fisher-Price – you all know why this is at the top ofpTRU1-2789443enh-z6 the list. It is possibly the most annoying toy ever created (thanks Fisher-Price!) Baby just pushes it and pop, pop, pop, pop, pop goes the balls. It. Never. Ends. If someone gifts your child this toy, they secretly despise you.
  2. See n’ Say by Fisher-Price – it seems like Fisher-Price makes several toys that torment parents. This toy is decades old, I remember annoying my mom with it as a child. Point the arrow at an animal and pull the lever down to hear what animal is is and what is says. You’ll hear “the cow goes moooooooooooooo” over and over and over.
  3. Any kind of musical instrument – this is self explanatory. I love music and my husband is a musician but we cannot stand hearing the our toddler’s toy instruments. Her keyboard, maracas, tambourine, drums and recorder (oh, the recorder is a nightmare) are often hidden because they’re just too much for us to hear all at once when our daughter is playing in her “band”.
  4. pTRU1-6647019dtGo Baby Go!™ 1-2-3 Crawl-Along Snail by Fisher-Price – another Fisher-Price toy, this snail would always start singing and lighting up when just sitting in the toy box with no one near it because there are no buttons to push to make it turn on. Simply touching it turns it on. Its songs and sound effects are highly annoying and my crazy kids absolutely love it.
  5. Playskool Poppin’ Park Elefun Busy Ball Popper by Playskool – the fan noise this
    thing projects is really annoying in and of itself but then it spits balls all over the place. My precious toddler loves throwing them at at me. They’re good for target practice I guess.
  6. Doc McStuffins Musical Light-Up Microphone – my husband brought this home for our daughter about a month ago and I thank my lucky stars everyday that he did (I’m being totally sarcastic). This thing never freaking stops and it’s so loud that it wakes my sleeping baby during nap time when my oldest plays with it. It’s now hiding on the top shelf of her closet and won’t be found for some time.
  7. My Pal Scout & Violet by Leapfrog – at  first I loved this dog when my oldest got it as my-pal-scout-violet_19156_2-1a gift a few years. I liked that it could be programmed with your child’s name so it could talk to them. But the buttons get jammed and the songs get stuck on one word or sound and it just repeats. The only way to stop it just turning it off or taking out the batteries. So annoying.
  8. Shake & Sounds Learning Pup by VTech – the only thing I can’t stand about this puppy is the constant barking. It’s cute and my daughter loves to play with it (she even named it Pumpkin Bubble Gum) but it barks. All. The. Time.


This is by no means a complete list, because according to my husband,
any toy that lights up and makes noise is annoying. This is just a small list of the most annoying toys (in my opinion) that we own or have owned. My husband and I often talk about taking the kids’ noisiestbusiness-software toys outside and going Office Space on their annoying asses.

If you have an annoying or noisy toy that you’d add to my list, let me know in the comments or tell us in the comments on this post on Facebook or Instagram! I know I am missing a lot and I’m curious which toys to stay away from!

– Casey

Made by Mary: Personalized Jewelry {Review}

FullSizeRender (87)Like most moms and grandmothers, I love showing off my little ones and the fact that I am a mother. I want the whole world to know that I am the mom of two of the sweetest, most beautiful girls on the planet. Of course I plaster their cute little faces all over my Instagram and Facebook pages and 99% of my Snapchat story is my four month old laughing and smiling as she’s starting to play with toys and my almost four year old running around the house being crazy. But my favorite, most personal way to honor my girls and to let everyone know they’re my world is personalized jewelry. I love jewelry as it is, but make it personal and it’s everything. I’ve been following Made by Mary on Instagram for quite some tiFullSizeRender (81)me now and finally pulled the trigger and reached out to collaborate on a review. I am so glad I did! I am beyond excited to share Mary’s beautiful personalized jewelry with our readers!

Mary Moody started Made by Mary as an outlet to cope with postpartum depression. She creates gorgeous metal stamped, minimalistic and meaningful pieces of jewelry that are perfect for parents, grandparents, caregivers or anyone who loves someone so much that they want to wear their name around their neck every single day! The jewelry is so simple and elegant! Made by Mary has several different styles of necklaces and bracelets to choose from, available in gold (14k gold filled), silver (sterling) or rose gold (14k gold filled). Necklaces have 3 different chain length options – 17 inches, 18 inches and 19 inches, perfect lengths to suit everyone. Personalization is available in three different fonts: Typewriter, Script, and Ariel and each front is available in upper and lowercase. Made by Mary has so many different types of necklaces to personalize, like their bar necklaces (my personal favorite) that can be personalized with names, dates, roman numerals, the sky’s the limit! FullSizeRender (88)You can also choose the bar length – 1.25, 1.5 and 1.75 inches long. There are also round and square charms that can be personalized with letters, dates or initials and there’s a cute little state charm, too! Seriously, there’s just too much to list, you have to check out Made by Mary’s Etsy shop to see all of the necklaces and combinations!

The possibilities are endless when it comes to their bracelets as well. Made by Mary bracelets are available for little wrists, too, so your little one can match you! They even have a Mama + Mini Duo! If you or a loved one has a medical conditioFullSizeRender (83)n (allergy, diabetes,ect.), gorgeous Medical ID bracelets are also available to personalize! Bracelets chains are available from 5 to 7 inches, making them a perfect fit for everyone.

I was sent an 18 inch silver bar ‘Mama” necklace (also available in “Grandma”) and the chain hit exactly where I wanted it to! It’s so delicate and simple, the perfect statement piece to let everyone know I am the Mama to my two little girls. I have sensitive skin when it comes to jewelry and this silver is not irritating at all, I am so thankful! I give Made by Mary jewelry a 5 out of 5 stars! I will definitely be a returning customer, not only for myself, but for gifts for family and friends! I know the moms and grandmas in my life will love Mary’s gorgeous handmade jewelry as much as I do!

Made by Mary is offering 15% off exclusively for BurritoBuzz readers! Use code BUZZ15 at checkout when you shop!

Be sure to follow Made by Mary on Instagram and visit her Etsy shop!

– 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.**

Stop trying to one-up the struggle…

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The comparison of struggle. Sometimes, it seems like parents are wanting to complain in a way that makes it seem like one person has it worse than the other. Like, “oh, your baby doesn’t sleep? Well, my baby is teething horribly which is so much worse.”

But I’ve said it before, where’s the empathy?

*Disclaimer: I’m addicted to ecards, which I’ll be using in abundance in this post.*

Why can’t one person’s struggle be acknowledged instead of mulled over and one-upped by another person’s struggle? babbleoneupper.png

And here’s the truth: we all have some kind of struggle going on. Whether we talk about it openly or not.

Even then, sometime I’ll just be in conversation and talking about a difficult phase we’ve been going through. Right now we’re dealing with some major toddler tantrums. Instead of saying “oh, I remember those days!” or “this too shall pass” or “it gets easier” or something uplifting, I often hear things like “he’ll be worse when he’s two!” “wait until he talks more…” blah blah blah.

When our son didn’t sleep, like at all, for 9 months, I got so much advice on things we should be doing. Like hello, I don’t enjoy being sleep deprived. If you think I hadn’t already tried those things, you are very wrong.

images.pngSo here’s what I’m getting at: it’s okay to identify and acknowledge someone else’s struggle without being upset that they aren’t facing your exact struggle. Sometimes we all just need to talk about what’s going on to get through the day.

A comparison I’ve heard recently: If you break your leg, you might scream that you’re in pain. In response, someone says to you “every bone in my body is broken!” But here’s the thing, the person with the broken leg is still in pain, whether or not it’s the same pain that you have or to the extent that you have it. It doesn’t make their issue any less of an issue.

This idea goes far beyond just parenting, but I’ve never before experienced such negativity and lack of compassion and empathy as I have since becoming a parent. 1338588890104_3927523.png

When someone takes the time to tell me their struggle these days, I try diligently to get on their level, to show that I care about their difficulties. And it’s impossible to always say the right thing, but I think that if we all try just a little harder to empathize we’ll be in much better shape. Our relationships will be stronger indefinitely.

– Katie

Relief for Teething Babies: Bitey Beads

Nothing says “I have a teething baby” like the big, soaking wet spot on your shoulder. When baby is teething, you learn not to wear dark colored tops, as dark colors leave spots. My husband has a permanent burp cloth attach to his shoulder when he’s holding our youngest. She’s only four months old, but she’s most definitely teething and her bottom teeth could pop through any day. My oldest didn’t get her first teeth until she was 8 months old, so according to her, her baby sister was getting teeth pretty early. WhileBitey-Beads-Simple-32-Inch--pTRU1-20022023dt she’s learning to grasp objects, she can’t quite hold teethers long enough to chew on them without dropping them. So I set out to find a teether that she can use without dropping. Silicone teething necklaces were the perfect solution. I reached out to Bitey Beads and they were sweet enough to send us two beautiful necklaces for us to try out.

First of all, they’re pretty! Since they’re made for mom to wear (not for baby), I am so glad that they’re cute and fashionable. I can wear them out and it just looks like a chunky, in style necklace. Second of all, my Georgia loves gnawing on them! To be honest, my almost 4 year old likes chewing on them, too! I feel that she is finally getting some relief from those pesky sore gums and I don’t have to hold a teether to her mouth, which is an added bonus! She can easily reach for and grab pic_carolyn-bodenthe beads and bring them to her mouth. Bitey Beads come in several bright, playful colors and the color combos are perfect! They’re also great to wear when you’re feeding baby, by nursing or bottle, as they give baby something to focus on, pull and grab.

Bitey Beads are so easy to clean, too. Just use soap and water or you can even throw them in the dishwasher! Made of food-grade silicone, Bitey Beads are BPA, PVC, lead, heavy-metal and Phthalates free so they’re perfectly safe for precious little babes! There is also a breakaway clasp and no detachable parts, making it safe for both mom and baby. Do not leave Bitey Beads with baby unattended, they are intended to be worn by adults only.

Both Georgia and I give Bitey Beads 5 out of 5 stars! I am so glad I found a product that can soothe her poor little gums but also doubles as a cute, new accessory for mommy. The price is on point at $29.9. It is a heavy duty, multipurpose necklace after all. Products range from $14.99 to $32.99, so there are plenty of options for every budget. And with all bitey-beads-silicone-teething-nursing-necklace-2-tone-turquoise-violet-19c67049f2d06e874662e494ed681ab4the different options of colors and styles, there is something for everyone. Bitey Beads has several other products, like necklaces with pendants, bracelets and even kid sized necklaces! Be sure to check out their website to see their entire product line! Bitey Beads are available for purchase on Amazon, at Babies R US, Kohls and Walmart. 

Follow Bitey Beads on Instagram and on Facebook for new releases and sales!

– Casey

My Tiny Little Monarch: Tantrums 101

crown-image-5.pngWe love my daughter’s name, but I am starting to question if it was a good choice. It means “Queen” and good Lord, she definitely plays the part! I have accepted that tantrums are just part of our day for the next year or two from what I hear from other parents. She is almost two and a half and the power struggle seems never ending.

Today’s meltdown causes are as follows: milk at breakfast was not delivered in a timely fashion, baby brother was touching empty milk cup, it was time for breakfast and she wanted to play with the puppy, breakfast was yogurt and not cereal, I got out blocks instead of puzzles, her requested water was in fact water, lunch (she just didn’t eat lunch today), and last but not least, daddy left for work. Okay, she can flip out about that one, because I don’t like him leaving either!

It really does feel like the tantrums are never ending, with no way to fix the problem. Let’s face it, half of the time we really don’t know what the problem is.

I have been dealing with tantrums for quite some time now. My daughter obviously has them and I have been responsible for many tiny little ones, who always seem to be on the brink of an emotional breakdown. In my experience, the tantrum stage doesn’t really go away until they are around four. Even then it’s pretty likely that a preschooler will have some pretty regular freak outs.

How do we stop them?43dcc329ba214a879635dcca9e2adda8

How do we make it better?

How do we prevent them?

First off, let me start with this: tantrums are normal. They are actually expected! If you don’t have a two or three year old that loses it from time to time, then you are very, very lucky, my friend!

Not every tip I am going to list will help. There is no perfect fix or one right way to deal with your toddler’s big emotions! Do what you feel is best for you and your family.

Understand why tantrums happenThe logical part (frontal cortex) of our brain doesn’t fully develop until we are 25 years old. A toddler physically can’t reason and react appropriately without being taught (over and over). Furthermore, there is a great deal of research that shows it is completely normal for a toddler or any person to have an angry reaction to what they perceive as distress. frontal-lobe-3-728.jpg  “Neuroscience has shown there are circuits that are activated for anger and aggression in response to different triggers,” says R. Douglas Fields, Ph.D, author of Why We Snap. “It’s part of the brain’s threat detection mechanism. The key concept is this anger and aggression exists to fight, and exists for violence because we need it.” Until that cortex is fully developed, it’s our job as parents to teach our little ones how to have feelings and what is appropriate. So if you didn’t know what caused the tantrum, you do now.

Where do we go from here? My kid is still on the ground screaming.Stay Calm dont panic .png

a00cc3dcb200abc3ea84425e03d04e5bIt is so easy to take the angry road. Believe me, been there, done that. And I don’t always keep my cool! Count to 5. Take deep breathes. Do whatever you have to do to stay calm before you dissipate a tantrum.  If it is the 314th tantrum today and you just can’t deal, then be sure your child is safe from harm and walk away for a few minutes. If you are at this point in a public place, find a restroom, dressing room, quiet corner and set your child down, turn around and clear your head for a minute. If you are angry, chances are you aren’t going to discipline your child the way you should. Not only that, but your child needs you “to be the calm in their storm.” If you are just thunder and lightning to their little rain storm, you are just going to make it 100 times worse. Angry actions are easier than calm ones.

GMV

Everyone has a bad day sometimes. What do your friends and loved ones do for you when you have a bad day? If they are kind and gracious they ask how they can help, they level with you,and let you know it’s okay to be upset or they tell you that you are in the wrong and help you get through it.  Either way, the logical answer for any type of emotion is never “stop it”, so why would be expect that from a two year old?

Bend down, sit down on the floor or kneel – You need to be eye to eye with your tiny human. Towering over them is scary and intimidating. When you get on their level, you are more likely to have a better outcome.on-their-level.jpg

Touch them – Hug it out, tickles and laughing, or simply put a hand on their arm. Your child longs for your touch. Not all toddlers love being held or snuggled all day (mine would let me some days), but your touch has a powerful part in soothing the situation.

Validate the situation“I understand…” are your two magic words. Name and validate your child’s feelings. For example: “I understand you want to play. You are sad that we have to go, aren’t you? It’s okay to be sad, I am sad when I have to leave sometimes too.”

  • Don’t try and use logic.
  • Focus on the feeling and emotion that is happening. Find your child’s niche to get through their emotions.
  • Be a role model. Your little one needs to know that it is okay to have feelings. As a parent, you are there to help them through their emotions. A child will never properly learn what actions should go with their feelings if you, 1. Don’t let them have them, and 2. Don’t help them through the emotion.
  • “Use your words, I want to help but I don’t understand screaming” – This phrase right here works so well in my home! Your child still might not get what they wanted in the end, but they will feel like you care and that you are listening.
    • If your child is on the younger side and just starting tantrums, be sure to still say “use your words”, but help them along a little more. Generally, if they are on the young side, they at least can say some words and phrases like “yes”, “no”, “more”, “gstop” etc.

Distract.png

Talk about an upcoming daily event. “It’s almost dinner time, how about you help me get the plates out?” Asking a child to help, whether they’re really helping or not, makes them feel important and generally changes their mood. If they aren’t old enough to help or there isn’t anything to help with, distract them with a new activity.

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Let’s imagine that it is time for lunch, you turn off their favorite cartoon and they start the usual tantrum. Chances are, your child isn’t old enough yet to understand the difference between “off for now” and “gone for eternity”.  rs_1024x748-160421181738-1024.Jessica-Capshaw-Sara-Ramirez-Greys-Anatomy.ms.042116.jpg

If the producers of Grey’s Anatomy ended my show at this point in time, I would probably turn red and have my own little hysterical meltdown. Not only does your child not quite understand why, but they physically are agitated and don’t know how to communicate that.

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  1. Remain calm. Show that it is not an acceptable way to show they are upset and try to diffuse the situation.
  2. Take a picture. Make yourself calm down first! Insensitive? Yes, probably a little, but remember that no parent is judging you and that it will pass. You don’t want your child to learn that if they embarrass you enough, that they will get what they want.Toddler-temper-tantrum-10.jpg
  3. Get down on their level, make contact, validate. – Consistency! React in public the same way you would at home. Yes, it might be nerve wracking and hard, but eventually the tantrums will be further and further apart.
  4. Wait it out in a quiet place. Find a dressing room, back corner of Target, wherever and whatever works.
  5. Try your hardest not to leave. Your child needs to learn how to behave in public settings. Not only that, but you have to learn how to discipline in a public setting! Sometimes giving in is the easiest way out and sometimes just plain not dealing with it is also, but the tantrums aren’t going away so it’s best to learn to get through them.

avoid

  • Awareness – Respect your toddler. Talking to your toddler like a human is important. You wouldn’t trap your husband in car, not tell him when dinner time was or not let him have play time.  So, while you’re doing things, talk. “We are going to the store and after the store, we are going home for lunch.” Children thrive on structure and the awareness of that structure!
  • Conquer the power struggle by staying consistent. In our home, we follow simple steps.
    • Speak once
    • Allow child to listen
    • If they don’t listen, repeat what you said
    • If they still don’t listen then the parent moves.

If it is something like “stop throwing the toy,” then I take the toy and remind her that it is not okay to throw toys, because she could hurt herself or someone else. If the throwing continues, then she goes to time out. We always say “when you’re done yelling at me, you can come back and play” and generally timeout is short-lived. And there are no long term consequences.

  • Be sure your child is fed and has had water, is clean & dry and has slept well. My daughter is a nightmare if any of these are off. God forbid we eat 15 minutes later than usual. Poor child gets hangry! So, just be aware of the circumstances to prevent a tantrum. If you are running late and it’s dinnertime when you leave the store, then just simply say “I know you are really hungry, I am too, but don’t be sad. We are going home to get some dinner.” Again, make your child aware.
  • Praise everything! Your child yearns for it and they will work for kind words. Mommy or Daddy being sad can be the worst thing to them and generally they will try to make it better!

Toddler tantrums will happen. Your child is not a “brat” or “bad” and it is not a personal attack on you as a parent and it definitely doesn’t mean you’re doing anything wrong. It is normal, exhausting and discouraging, but you can get through it! Be sure to have plenty of adult time and always remember that each day is a new day. Your toddler barely remembers why they were mad five minutes ago, much less yesterday. Start every day with a smile and stay strong. The tiny crazy monarch will one day leave your home, and you will be left with an awesome kid and a whole new outlook on that mom staring at her two year old on the floor, kicking and screaming ,at the grocery .

❤ Amanda

 

 

Dear Daughters: Don’t Always Be Like Me

FullSizeRender (59)There are things I don’t like about myself. When you have kids, you think about all of the characteristics and traits you don’t want your kids getting from you. Not that those traits are necessarily bad, but that you, as a parent, don’t want to deal with in a little person. There are also things you hope your children don’t pick up from watching you because you suck at those things.

Here are 10 things I hope my girls don’t learn or inherit from me.  

  1. My inability to do makeup. Seriously, I am so bad. I only wear mascara and eyeliner (because putting on anything else would take hours) but I end up with black all over my face. I use an embarrassing amount of Simple Face Wipes, they can literally remove anything. I hope while watching me over the years, my daughters don’t think that that is how you apply it. I will be directing them to YouTube makeup tutorials when it comes time for them to start wearing makeup.
  2. The fact that I can’t do anything but straighten my hair and put it in a pony tail. I got a curling iron because I wanted to do “beach waves” (because beach waves are so in) and I literally can’t figure out how to use it. It just leaves kinks at the ends and doesn’t curl very well. So I hope my girls can learn how to do their hair from YouTube tutorials as well.
  3. I’m am stubborn as shit. The only reason I know I am stubborn is because my almost four year old is exactly like me and she’s stubborn as hell. The two of us butt heads like you wouldn’t believe because of it. I can only imagine how the teenage years are going to go. I also pray my four month old is an angel. I cannot handle two mini-me’s.
  4. My daughters will never, ever see me wearing heels. My husband and I have been together 6 years and he’s never seen me in a pair. I have super flat feet and can barely walk in them but when I was 19, I thought I was cool and went clubbing a lot during that winter. By spring, I was in a cast up to my knee to help set my foot (I sprained it one icy night) and the toenails on my both big toes died and fell off. So, no, I don’t like heels and my girls won’t catch me wearing them.
  5. I can’t cook to save my life. Yes, it’s true. I can’t cook and what I can cook isn’t the greatest. My husband jokes that he should have married my best friend instead because she is a phenomenal cook. Maybe I should have married her, too.
  6. I don’t want them to be afraid to make a mess. Even though they see mommy cleaning constantly, I don’t want them doing the same and worrying about the mess they’re making rather than playing with their toys. Mommy has OCD, they don’t need it, too.
  7. Mommy has an anger problem and yells. A lot. Don’t be like Mommy. My parents never spanked us, but my dad yelled and his voice had the power to bring me straight to my knees and tears to my eyes. He can still make me cry just by raising his voice. I’m the same way with yelling, however, I’m trying my hardest not to lose my cool so easily. I’ve already noticed my oldest yelling (like her mommy, because we’re identical) and I hate seeing her getting angry like that.
  8. I look like I’m seizing when I try to dance. I can’t dance at all. I like dancing, but I have no ability whatsoever. So I hope my oldest, who is taking ballet this fall, will have the dancing gene that is completely absent in me.
  9. Please excel in school like Daddy and let us be able to watch you walk at you high school graduation (unlike mommy). It’s true, I got suspended on the last day of school because I drank all night (with about half of the graduating class) and passed out while taking my final French exam. Because of the suspension, I couldn’t walk at graduation. My parents were pissed and I feel bad that they weren’t able to see me walk across the stage and get my high school diploma (I did graduate and get my diploma though). I just hope my girls take school more seriously than I did (and not worry about boyfriends and the crazy parties) and get good grades to get into a good college.
  10. Sunscreen is your friend! I went tanning in a tanning bed almost every day for years in my late teens/early twenties. My skin, at 28, is awful. I will slather the shit out of my kids with sunscreen until they’re physically able to beat me off of them. I better never catch them in a tanning bed either. But seriously, I hope they’re smarter than me when it comes to the sun.

– Casey

Enso Silicone Rings {Review}

I’m sure it’s happened to everyone at some point; I even remember it happening to me as a child. I was playing around with my mom and suddenly, her wedding ring scratched my little face. I know I’ve done it to my girls and I feel completely awful when it happens. Rings can hurt, I have scratched myself plenty of times as well. After my oldest started to complain about me “scratching her”, I started leaving my rings off during the daIMG_9430 (1)y. But my hand felt naked, I love wearing my rings. But I hated that my poor daughter didn’t want me wearing them. I’ve heard about silicone rings for men who worked dangerous jobs like firefighters, mechanics, welders, etc. and how they were comfortable and safe. But I didn’t just want a single silicone band, I wanted something a little more girly and fashionable.

I saw Enso Rings on Facebook and immediately went to their website. I fell in love with their stackable silicone rings for women. I reached out to the company and they were kind enough to send a set of 3 stackable rings to review. I wear size 7 rings so I ordered the black, white and plum rings in a size 7 and they fit perfectly. They are true to size, so be sure to order your normawebsite-header-logol ring size. As soon as I put them on, I knew they were exactly what I wanted. They’re so comfortable, I hardly notice they’re on my finger. I love the option to wear one, two or all three at one time and that I can order different colors to be able to coordinate the rings with my clothes. They’re available in several colors: white, black, turquoise, plum and peach, and you can customize sets of 2, 3, 4 or 5 with whatever colors you’d like. The rings are also available in a women’s size 4 up to a size 9.

They’re also perfect for summer, as you don’t have to worry about wearing them in the pool or to the beach. They would be ideal on vacation, as well, so you don’t have to worry about expensive rings getting lost and great to wear to the gym, since they’re comfortable unlike traditional metal rings. I think they’d be good for those who work in the healthcare field, too! If your kids are like mine, they’ll be happy you got a “softer” ring so you don’t scratch them anymore, as my daughter says. Enso also offers sIMG_9712ilicone bands for men and women in several colors and two collections: Infinity and Ultralite. Bundles are available in both collections, as well as the stack-ables.

I love my new stack-able rings from Enso! The peach and turquoise rings are on my list so I can switch up my look! I give them 5 out of 5 stars, as they are exactly what I was looking for! Unique and different from just the silicone band, but also fashionable.

Free U.S. shipping on all silicone rings! Don’t forget to check out Enso Rings on Instagram, Twitter and on Facebook!

– Casey

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

Mom Hair: I Took the Plunge

As a mom of two kids (a new baby and wild and crazy almost four year old,) I have zero time for myself. Absolutely no time. I used to pride myself in having cute manicured and polished nails (done by me nonetheless), but I can’t remember the last time I painted them. However, I do make time to paint my toes but that’s because I only need to do them every month or so. Now that it’s summer, I make myself shave my legs at least once a week. I don’t want people gawking at my leg stubble when wearing a dress. Who wants to put pants or shorts on when it’s 90 degrees out? Bring on the chaffing. I haven’t had a haircut since July 8th of last year. Yes, it has been almost an entire year since even a trim. It was practically dead and way too long for my liking. It was always getting caught under my purse and diaper bag straps, not to mention my three month old loved on it pulling on it the point where I think I’m missing chunks. So I took the plunge.

I got a Mom Haircut.

What’s a Mom Haircut you ask? Just what it sounds like: a shorter, more manageable and easy to to do hair style, perfect for busy moms with no time. Okay, it’s probably not what Carol-Brady-Brady-Bunch-Theoryyou’re thinking. I didn’t go and get a Carol Brady haircut and if you’ve seen the SNL skit dedicated to Mom Hair, I didn’t go that far, no soft waterfall in the front and knives in the back. But something in me did break and I decided the long hair had to go. I was tired of throwing it into a ponytail every day or trying to find the 20-25 minutes it took to straighten it (only for it to end up in a damn ponytail an hour later because of the awesome Ohio humidity). My scalp was starting to hurt every time I took my ponytail out at night because it was entirely too tight, otherwise my hair would just fall out of the pony. It was frustrating and painful. And a baby yanking on my hair nonstop is definitely not my idea of fun. So I did it. I chopped almost 6 inches of that shit off.

It was the best decision I could have made.

It’s not super short, but it’s short enough for me to quickly style it daily and actually look put together. I didn’t even want to be able to put it up in a ponytail. but who am I kidding, I need to still be able to throw it up. My hair is starting to fall out from when I was pregnant (yay for hormones returning to normal levels) so I’m hoping cutting it will lessen the amount lost. I want thick, healthy hair again so I hope I’m on my way! I also wanted some color. I just really needed a change from my boring straight dark brown hair. For me, highlights are too hard to keep up with. I don’t have the money or time to get my roots touched up every 6-8 weeks. I didn’t want to color my hair all one color either because of the outgrown roots. So what did I do for color?

Ombré and Balayage are perfect for Moms.b8d182f64a31d492675a8661fe84a925

I decided to get quite the change with subtle ombré! Ombré is having tones of color that shade into each other, graduating from light to dark. So my stylist dyed the bottom of my hair blonde to where it gradually goes to dark at the top. How perfect is that? It was dyed to look like it’s grown out. I don’t know about you, but that sounds like a Mom style to me. No need for touching up roots!

I am so happy I took the plunge. I love my new cut and color. I honestly feel like a new woman. It’s pretty awesome how a new hairstyle can take your self esteem to a whole new level. I don’t know if it’s technically “Mom Hair” but it might be, therefore I will wear it proud for all the moms out there rocking their version of Mom Hair. My almost four year old said it was really pretty (but she didn’t want her hair like that) and my husband said I was the hottest MILF ever which is quite the compliment. True or not, I am a definite MILF in my own eyes, which is all that matters.

– Casey

PlaSmart Smart Mat {Review}

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My 16 month old son loves his cars. Maybe almost as much as I loved playing cars with my younger brother when I was little. My brother and I had a cool car mat with streets and shops that we would play on for hours at a time. Though, it was located in his room instead of mine, which I still call bullshit on. As an adult, I hate real cars and how much they take from my bank account, but that doesn’t mean I don’t still love a good few hours of playing Hot Wheels with my son. I was thrilled that PlaSmart was sending BurritoBuzz some products, because I was really anxious to get one of their Smart Mats!

We set the Happyville Smart Mat up in our playroom and while my son doesn’t quite get the idea of the roads yet, he truly loves driving his cars on it. The mat is pretty large at 80 x 57 x 0.2 inches, which is way larger than the carpet one that I had when I was young.

It is lightweight, at only 2lbs and the base is made from EVA foam. IMG_2888

The graphics are phenomenal, and the ease of cleaning this mat makes it a great purchase (which I found out after my asshole cat decided to barf on it). The pattern does repeat three times, but most children won’t care or even notice.

This does take a few days to flatten out fully and it also needs to air out. The smell of paint/ink/chemicals when first opening this was extreme and made me a little wary but did go away within a day or two.

While I love the material and texture of the mat, it does damage very easily. My son has put several gouges into the mat already and if you have any pets with claws, you’re doomed and a carpet mat would probably be better for you. Still, toys endure wear and most things look like they’ve been abused after a toddler has played with them.

Traintown.pngThere is also another variation, the Traintown Smart Mat, that BurritoBuzz mom, Casey, received. She also agreed that it needed to air out for a day or two and the graphics are pretty awesome. Her little one likes to play with trains, so her little collection of trains were perfect to play with on her new mat. The graphics are printed three times on the train mat as well, but little Stella doesn’t mind. In fact she liked that mommy and daddy could both have the same “pink house” as she did.

Even with those few cons, I still think this mat is a great addition to our playroom. My son plays on this daily. The Happyville mat will run you around $25 and the Traintown mat is about $30, a pretty modest price for a car and train mat like this!

You can buy yours here:
Plasmart Happyville Smart Mat

Plasmart Traintown Smart Mat

Pickles and Broken Glass.

 

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My typical day is chaotic. From the time my 15 month old son wakes up at the ass-crack of dawn (5:30AM) to the moment that I binge watch Game of Thrones for a solid episode and a half before retiring to bed.

My typical week consists of working 8-5 MWF, shooting weddings Saturdays, sometimes shooting on Sundays, and editing photos all the time I have free in-between. On top of that, I write for this bad ass blog (I might be biased,) clean, grocery shop, do laundry, yard work, and chase my VERY active toddler around. Somehow, I’ve only had one late bill since having my son, and I haven’t caught anything on fire or forgotten to lock the door.

Today is my day “off” from my regular job. However, days with my toddler are infinitely more exhausting (even though better and more rewarding, definitely more exhausting.) This morning we went through the motions of a typical morning, and then after Dad left for work, Lucas and I packed up and went to the grocery store.

I take my son a lot of places by myself, but it’s no less daunting each time. I never know how the trip will go; thankfully, today was an easy trip.

After getting home, I contained my tiny human in the living room. He was instantly like “WTF Mom, I want to play,” and proceeded to growl at me. I quickly started unloading groceries in turbo-speed from my detached garage. I would quite literally rather dislocate both of my arms with grocery bags than have to take two trips into the house, but today was a two-tripper. This means I’m usually carrying at least 10 bags at a time, up the steps of my porch, inside, and stepping over baby gates with all of said bags.

Today I dropped them.

No big deal, until I heard all the glass break and fluid came flying out and proceeded to flood my freshly cleaned kitchen. (Of all the things, it HAD to be the Kosher pickles. WHY GOD couldn’t it have been something I don’t give a shit about, like the soup my husband eats but that I insist isn’t real food.)

So, then commenced my mom meltdown. Groceries to put away, and a toddler that is P.O.ed and needs a diaper change and a snack before he goes in to full-on apocalyptic meltdown.

But today I’m thankful for my spilled pickles (which I carefully picked out of broken glass, washed off, and put into Tupperware.) Those spilled pickles gave me an epiphany that I think I’ve needed for some time. The epiphany to slow down. Just to slow myself down.

I rush so much, and feel obligated to do so much for so many. I love being busy, mostly. But some days, I just need to stop. I need to take four trips in with the groceries, and entertain my toddler in-between. I need to take a nap. Drink a cup of tea. Read a chapter of a book.

When did I stop doing all of those things?

We’ve said it before: you can’t serve from an empty cup. Sometimes we all need the reminder that life is going to go on, and that the groceries can wait.

 

-Katie

Infantino Fusion {Babywearing Review}

I am a huge proponent of baby-wearing, and love that the concept has gained so much momentum recently. Baby-wearing can be seen throughout history, but seems as though it was pushed to the back burner for a long period of time in favor of various other options. Not only does baby-wearing help a new mom/dad bond with their baby, but it frees up your hands, something we all know is crucial when you’re just trying to get a few things done in the day. Baby-wearing is shown to help with post-partum depression and baby blues, too!

So I’ve tried a few carriers. When my little guy was super little I liked to have him curled into a Ring Sling. When he was a little bigger, I tested out the Tula. I soon hope to test a few other great carriers, but one that I tested that I think could use some improvement is the Infantino Fusion, Flexible Position carrier. And I’ll be the first to tell you, when it comes to baby products you generally get what you pay for.

All of these carriers are “safe”, but some are better for both you and your little. There is a lot of controversy over whether or not certain carriers cause hip dysplasia or not, but I’m not a medical expert, so I’ll skip the subject and let you do your own research. What I can say, is that both myself and my LO were much more comfortable in more ergonomic carriers. 

  • The Infantino is structured to allow many different carrying positions (back, forward facing in, forward facing out,) and babies 8-32 lbs.
  • There are flaps that can be buttoned in or out to make for a wider or more narrow seat. The buttons were exceptionally difficult to use, and not worth the hassle.
  • The fabric is thick, and while maybe comfortable at first, my LO quickly became pretty toasty in this carrier.
  • There is a head flap that can button down, or stay up for additional head support. No qualms here… this was a feature I liked.
  • The straps for the carrying parent are thin, not particularly comfortable, and not very easy to put on along. They also don’t offer safety elastic like many other carriers do, a feature that is reassuring and I’d prefer to have.
  • I also love that many other carriers have sun shade hoods, drool pads, and a pocket. Non of which the Infantino has.
  • I also struggle to understand the narrow center of the carrier. The carriers that I’ve been a fan of have been wide, and wide from top to bottom. Not only does this provide comfort and a place to snuggle in, but good coverage from the sun when out hiking around.
  • The carrier is, however, much more affordable than a typical carrier. The Fusion can be purchased for about $40, which is well under the typical $150 you’ll spend with any other brand.

Overall, adjustments do need to be made to this carrier and it’s not currently one I would recommend to the baby-wearing parent or caretaker.

-Katie