Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Review #14: Jujube Be-Quick

This is my favorite new bag that I got for Christmas! It’s the JuJuBe Be-Quick. This little clutch style bag, looks like an adorable purse yet it can hold so much! It is the exact perfect size to fit a pack of travel wipes, a few diapers, car keys, a wallet, a pacifier, some lip gloss, tampons, and room to spare. It’s a high quality fabric and I love it for when we are shopping, or going to visit someone for a little bit. Now that PJ is 2, I don’t need to always need (or want) to carry a change of clothes, bottles, formula, snacks, etc just for quick trips. The be-quick is perfect for those times!

Saturday, February 25, 2017

Review #13: Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See?

PJ is obsessed with this book! We have the Brown Bear, Brown Bear What Do You See? Slide & Find version. After being concerned about PJ’s speech development, it's amazing to see his love for books grow and this is one of his favorites! Not only is this a classic, but children of all ages love it!  Eric Carle definitely hit it out of the park with this one and we, personally, are thankfully for it! 

Thursday, February 23, 2017

Review #12: Cloud B Octopus Nightlight

The Cloud B TwinklesOctopus Night Light has quickly become one of PJ’s favorite things about bed time. It has 4 settings, shining in either blue, green, red or fading between the three. It’s easy to use with only 2 buttons and it has a 45 minute automatic turn off timer. However, PJ’s favorite thing about this nightlight is the fact that it shines pictures of stars, moons, fish and bubbles all over his walls and ceiling. It's bright enough to soothe him, but dim enough so that it won’t keep him awake. And because it’s such an awesome product, it runs on batteries and is small enough to travel with! 

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Top Ten “Must Have” Registry Items

Top Ten “Must Have” Registry Items

So I have been asked a few times to make this list. I am going to highlight them by “what they are” and then I'll suggest one(or a few) of my favorite brands/models. Please realize every baby is different & every family is different so obviously what you need & want will be a bit different than what I want. As always, these are my favorite items that I have(or wish I had)

#1: Infant Car Seat: You can purchase these either as part of a travel system or on their own. Personally, I am a huge fan of the Graco Snugride 35, I used these for both my kids. They are sturdy infant seats, easy to carry & fairly easy to adjust. I also LOVE that they can snap into Graco strollers so easily.
PJ coming home from the hospital in a Graco Snugride 35

#2 Full size stroller: Many people prefer jogging strollers, if you like to run, that’s probably a very important thing for you! I however, despise running and am a member of the “I don’t run unless someone is chasing me” club. So I went with a cheaper model to save money. I've used a few different Graco strollers. None of which were over the moon amazing, but they worked & I don’t have any huge complaints about them. My “dream” stroller to be compatible with the Graco Snugride 35 would be the Graco FastAction Fold Sport. -
PJ enjoying Thomasland at Edaville USA his Graco LiteRider Stroller

#3 Lightweight stroller: These are much smaller and perfect for traveling or when you need to just toss it into a friend’s car. I own the Summer Infant 3D Lite and it is a wonderful and affordable little stroller. After over a year, the wheels are starting to squeak a bit and the fold occasionally catches but it’s doing pretty great considering it's been checked on quite a few flights and tossed around a bit! If I had all the money in the world, I would buy the GB Pockit, which folds up to fit into a 12 x 7 box and weighs less than 11lbs!
Summer Infant 3D Lite

#4 Convertible Car Seat: Most babies switch to a convertible car seat between 6 months and 18 months old. Current safety reports suggest that children stay rear facing until they are AT LEAST 2 years old, however, the longer they remain rear facing, the safer they are. I suggest purchasing a convertible car seat that will rear face until 40-50lbs which will get most children until 3-6 years old. We own a Graco 4ever for PJ and I don’t think I've ever been in love with a piece of baby gear so much in my entire life. It is a super easy install, has a 10-year expiration and can fit a child from 4lbs to 120lbs. It works as a convertible seat, a high-back booster and a backless booster. There’s also this wonderful thing called a “no rethred harness” which means it is incredibly easy to change the strap height when the child grows!
Graco 4Ever

#5 Feeding Equipment:  I personally cannot speak to breastfeeding gear(I hope to bring in a guest blogger to talk about breastfeeding gear) However I can talk about bottles. We finally found the perfect bottle (for us) with the Phillips Avent Bottles. Beware of any bottles that have vents in the bottom. They have a tendency to leak if you wash in the dishwasher, and my laptop almost was victim to being filled by formula on various occasions.

#6 Baby Carrier: I am a huge believer in baby wearing. It is an amazing thing, baby stays close, mom gets to use her hands & everyone is very very happy! I am a tula-fanatic so I am obviously going to suggest a Tula. If you plan on wearing the baby before they are 3 months old, I suggest also getting an infant insert.  PJ is currently 2 years old & we are still using our Tulas!

The first day we got our first Tula. The name of this print is Spotted Love

#7 Co-sleeper: It is natural for a mother and baby to want to be near each other after birth. There are many options for cosleeping/bedsharing/roomsharing depending on your wants. We used an old fashion cradle for Dawn. She was completely in her own cradle next to me.  When PJ was born, I wanted us to be closer to each other. We used an ArmsReach CoSleeper. I LOVED this. It was easy to soothe him at night & I felt very close to him, but he was safely on his own surface. There is now a wonderful third option if you want to go for safe bed-sharing, the Dock-a-tot. You need to have at least a queen sized bed for this one. Baby is in the bed with you but has a safe surrounding. I highly suggest researching safe-sleep, benefits of bed sharing and making the best decision for your family before making this decision!
About a month old in his ArmsReach CoSleeper

#8 Swing/Vibrating Seat/etc: I typically went with a more inexpensive choice for these. PJ actually LOVED his Fisher Price Infant to Toddler Rocker. This is one that I say, go with your gut! Choose what you like, what fits into your budget, etc.
All smiles in the Infant to Toddler Rocker

#9 High Chair: We had a huge high chair with Dawn. It was always in the way & honestly, it was very annoying. When I was pregnant with PJ I researched everywhere & decided on the Fisher Price Space Saver seat. This seat attaches to your own chair & can work as a booster as the child gets old. PJ is 2 and still loves his seat.
Space Saver High Chair

#10 Diaper Bag: Until recently, I didn’t understand why there was such a HUGE price difference with diaper bags. Then I purchased my first “Designer diaper bag” The Jujube Be Right Back. I don’t know how I survived without it. This style is a backpack, amazingly designed with mom pockets and insulated bottle pockets. It has lots of space and BEAUTIFUL designs!
Wearing my JuJuBe Be Right Back Diaper Bag on my back & PJ is napping in another one of our Tulas!

Other necessary items that I don’t want you to forget but I don’t have specific recommendations on are:
Changing Table
Pack & Play
Baby Bath
Receiving Blankets

Also, Check Out My List of 10 Things To Have Ready When You Have a Baby!

5 Things I thought were a waste of money!
#1 Expensive baby baths
#2 Bottle Warmer
#3 Bottle Sanitizer
#4 Baby Timer
#5 Expensive Baby Bedding
#6 Extra Infant Car Seat Bases- Infant seats can be installed very easily with a seatbelt & it is EQUALLY as safe!

Monday, February 20, 2017

Review #11: BabyZTees, JoeyandGia & M&EFashions

Dawn is always a pile of fun on photoshoots and she was so very in love with this outfit. We absolutely LOVE this shirt from BabyZTees The cut back and the muscle tank along with the fun glittery saying make it the perfect summer tank. And she couldn’t stop twirling around in the metallic purple mermaid M.and.E_fashions twirl skirt! And the outfit was finished off with the most adorable JoeyandGia bow! We highly recommend all three shops, their items are wonderfully made and super cute! 

Sunday, February 19, 2017

Review #10: Summer Infant 3D Lite Stroller

Today was the perfect day for a walk on the canal & it was finally warm enough to take out our Summer Infant 3D Lite stroller. I bought this stroller last year for traveling. It is only 12lbs, has a 1 hand fold, and a 5 point seat belt. Beyond anything, I love it because it is easy to push, it keeps PJ happy & comfy and best of all….. it has a cup holder for my coffee! The basket is deep enough for a diaper bag and there is a pocket on the back to hold car keys, wallet, or whatever else you may have. I cannot say enough about this awesome stroller, it's our go-to for traveling or to easily toss in the car!

PJ at the Cape Cod Canal

Review #9: Pawpatroller!

By far the most used toy in our house is the Paw Patrol Pawpatroller. PJ absolutely loves loading it up with the pups and their cars and driving it around. The ability to switch out the seats in the front so that Ryder and a pup can drive it awesome. It’s easy to open, very sturdy & can store up to three cars inside while not in use.

And huge shout out to OurFiveLoves at www.our5loves.com where you can get this amazing t-shirt!

Saturday, February 18, 2017

About me & the blog :)

I just wanted to take a moment to explain where Just Mommin Around came from & a little about me.

I live on Cape Cod with my husband and two wonderfully crazy children, Dawn & PJ. When Dawn was born I was very adamant about continuing my newly started career & I worked 40-60 hours per week for the first 5 years of her life. When my husband took a job on the other side of the country, leaving him away from Dawn & I all but about 60 nights per year, I scaled back. Focused on spending more time with Dawn. When we decided it was time to add #2 to the family I knew some big changes would have to come with it.

At 30 weeks pregnant with PJ I was put on modified bed rest for signs of preterm labor. I gave up my second part time job & knew that I needed to search for a change, I didnt want to go back to working 40 hours a week but we needed some income. I was lucky to find a company, where I started when PJ was 2 months old, which let me work from home & with my baby. I could get Dawn on & off the bus every day. No more missing out on anything, no more babysitters, no more daycare.

But I also had a lot more time, and hence I became a "research mom" I researched every piece of gear we got PJ. I researched every toy, I shopped sales & I joined mommy groups. I LOVED immersing myself in my #1 job... mom.

PJ is now 2, I've researched(and purchased) more items than I even care to admit but I am so happy to have been chosen to be a Brand Ambassador of the guidance guide & parental guidance. I am now able to channel my knowledge of all these items and review our favorite things! All reviews are currently posted here at Mommin' Around and on my instagram @staceylynnephotography

I am always happy to answer questions, please feel free to ask! I will also be posting blogs with my favorite products, my experiences as a mom, and all things in between.

Thursday, February 16, 2017

Review #8: ColorfulCreationsCC Car Seat Sticker

The ColorfulCreationsCC Car seat safety reminder stickers are more about peace of mind than anything else. We have them on both sides of our spare car seat. It’s a reminder to grandparents, babysitters, and anyone not familiar with buckling PJ in the seat on proper car seat use. There is a lot to remember to make sure the seat is perfect, this is a nice reminder! 


Review #7: BabyGreeters Car Seat Poncho

Our BabyGreeters Car Seat Poncho is a MUST HAVE item daily in the winter! Not only is it adorable but it makes it so easy to keep PJ warm going to the car & avoid having to take off his coat to buckle him into his car seat. Their poncho has snaps all the way down the front, which we love because we can unsnap for long car rides so he won’t overheat & he can use the poncho as a blanket if he wants. It is made from double layered fleece and has a nice spacious hood to keep snow & rain off his little head. 


Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Review #6: EzPz MiniMats

EzPz minimats are not only good for the little ones meals but Dawn loves using them for craft time. There was only a half day at school today so they were perfect for sorting her beads during crafts this afternoon! The suction keeps them from sliding all over the table when elbows hit them! 

Monday, February 13, 2017

List of 10 things to have ready after you have a baby!

So this list isn't going to be your typical baby list. This is the nitty gritty stuff. The stuff no one told you to get & you send your partner running to the store for about an hour after your get home with that beautiful new baby. These aren't things that are on registries or given as baby shower gifts. But these things are by far, what you want THE MOST after having a baby(or at least were for me- or would have been if they were around)

If you're looking for my list of "Go to newborn items" or "best items for baby's first 2 years" They are coming soon & I'll link it here once it's up :)

#1. Breast Pads.... even if you aren't going to breastfeed. Breast Pads & lots of them! Boobs leak, a lot.
#2. New Grannie Panty Undies that you don't care about at all. Some will get tossed after first use and that's okay.
#3. Extra sheets for your bed. Not just 1 set for laundry day because with a new baby laundry day will not happen always when your bed is dirty and things are going to happen to your bed. Baby will puke, you might leak(from multiple locations) it's okay, its natural. Just be ready to swap the sheets often.
#4. Pain meds. Now this is a tricky subject if your breastfeeding so talk to your lactation consultant & your Obgyn but it never hurts to have pain meds on hand.
#5. Stool Softeners. Just trust me... buy them before you have the baby & just have them on hand.
#6. Touch lights. This is my tried & true trick. When PJ was a newborn, I had them everywhere! On my nightstand, on his changing table, EVERYWHERE. The light is super soft & they are able to be brought wherever you need to be but they won't wake up the whole house.
#7. Pads of all shapes, sizes & varieties.
#8. Fridet by NoseFrida. I didn't have one of these with either of my kids, I used the old water bottle trick, but this thing would have been much better than trying to get in an odd position to squirt a water bottle upside down in the bathroom at my in-laws less than 2 weeks after having a baby.
#9. Receiving blankets. These actually are probably gifted to you, but we used about 20 a day. Baby puke, spilled formula, leaking boob, crying mom..... all can be mopped up with a receiving blanket.
 #10. No expectations. Honestly, the more open you are about parenting those first few days & weeks, the easier it will be. I went into my first will all kinds of expectations about what I wanted & how my baby would be. But shes a person(and now at 7 years old she's very very strong willed one). She had her own wants & needs & ideas from the moment she was born. It will be much easier on all involved if you go with the flow & ask for help if you need it!

Dawn Elizabeth 7.18.2009

Peter Justen 1.6.2015

Sunday, February 12, 2017

Review #5: ToysRUs Imaginarium Train Set

PJ is currently obsessed with this 14-piece figure 8 @ToysRUs Imaningairum Train Set. The tracks are sturdy, made from wood and easy for him to put together. The trains have magnets to attach to each other and roll very easily on the tracks. And my favorite, there any many more sets, which are very affordable, that we can add on with! 

Friday, February 10, 2017

Review #4: Replay

PJ's lunch today on our favorite divided plate from Replay Recycled. We don't go a meal in this house without using replay! Not only are they environmentally friendly(they are made from recycled milk jugs) but they are also fun colors, sturdy & the only sippy cup that doesnt leak when PJ throws it. If you havent checked them out before... I highly suggest you do! .

Replay Dinnerware

Review #3: Tegu

If you are a parent of any child age 1-100 I cannot recommend Tegu Magnetic Blocks enough! Dawn and PJ got their first set last year and I honestly figured they were for little kids, but Dawn loves them just as much as her brother! We now own the carrying case and 2 14-piece sets in the tints color. Each set includes 5 different shapes, all with magnets. They come with a little book of ideas to build, or you can let your imagination go to work. And since I’m raving about them… I have to share that I love them just as much as the kids! 


Review #2: Mixed Pears Bitesizers

As all parents know, once your child is eating solid foods it is very important to keep the pieces small. I always disliked cutting the pieces, how long it would take and how I always felt like I would cut off my finger. Last summer I discovered Mixed Pears Bitesizers. We now own two sets! One stays in the diaper bag and the other in our kitchen. I cut up the food in no time, and there’s no fear of accidentally cutting myself. They look just like scissors but they are incredibly sharp and can cut through meat without any problem. They even cut right through hot dogs & the skin.  The little circle in the center is a guide of what size is appropriate for a small child to eat. They also come with a snap on cap for safety!

Review #1: Smartbottoms Doll Carrier

There are a few reasons I love this Smartbottoms Doll Carrier. First and foremost, Dawn LOVES to be able to wear her dolls & stuffed animals like mom wears her brother. Secondly, she wants to bring her toys everywhere but is known for losing things. It is a wonderful way for her to get to bring her stuffed animal and we know she won’t leave it somewhere. And lastly, she looks so darn cute with Duffy peaking over her shoulder! These doll carriers are perfect for kids age 3+ and with the elastic back strap they fit many children for a long time!

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