Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Review #49: Babies R Us Bottle Drying Rack

Babies R Us Bottle Drying Rack

This bottle drying rack is very simple and easy to use. It is easy to clean, can hold up to 8 bottles and 8 nipples/accessories at a time. We have been using ours for over 2 years with no issues or complaints. It’s a wonderfully simple product.

Tuesday, May 30, 2017

Review #48: Camelbak Water Bottle

Camelbak Water Bottle

The camelbak water bottle is wonderful. It truly does not leak! My oldest has one she brings to school every day as well as sports practices. My youngest brings his to daycare, to the park, to the playground and anywhere else we venture. Never have I had one of these water bottles leak.  Both children(age 7 & 2) are able to use them easily & they fit in the car seat cup holders!

Monday, May 29, 2017

Review #47: Thermos Foogo

Thermos Foogo

This cup is wonderful for when you need to bring milk out without a fridge or a cooler. The Foogo is a vacuum insulated hard spout sippy cup. It can keep the contents cold for up to 10 hours, holds 10 ounces and is great for kids 12 months and older.

Sunday, May 28, 2017

Review #46: Nuby SuperSpout

Nuby Super Spout

The Nuby Super Spout was one of my daughter's favorite sippy cups. It is relatively easy to clean with only 3 pieces including the valve. It has sturdy handles and a medium flow that is easy for young children to sip from. My daughter always preferred a wider cup with cider handles as they were easier to hold on to, which is why I believe she liked this so much. 

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Review #45: EzPz MiniMat

EzPz MiniMat

We used our Ezpz mini mat a ton when my son was 6months-2years. He had a very long "throw all plates on the floor" stage and the mini mat was a diaper bag essential for restaurant trips. It stays stuck to the table, has sections for the different foods and it comes in beautiful colors! Now that my son doesn't use it as often, we use it for arts & crafts and bead sorting!

Thursday, May 18, 2017

Review #44: Ju-Ju-Be HoBoBe

Ju-Ju-Be HoBoBe

I love my Ju-Ju-Be HoBoBe. Not only is it my new go-to purse but it is fully equipped as a diaper bag. There is a wonderful mommy pocket, with a keychain attachment, small zipper pocket and elastic mesh pocket. In the main pocket there are multiple mesh elastic pockets and a zipper pocket where I keep 2 diapers and a pack of wipes. There is also a cell phone pocket, two bottle pockets and a changing pad pocket with changing pad. This little bag can carry everything I need for a trip to the store, playgroup or the park. Its a wonderful addition to my bag collection!

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Review #43: Munchkin 360 Cup

The Munchkin 360 cup was the first sippy cup we tried with PJ. He loved having handles to hold on to & mimicking drinking out of a cup like his big sister. I love how it is pretty leak proof. It only leaks for a quick second upon making contact when hitting the ground. Much better than many other cups, which will leak the entire contents if they hit at the right angle. It also holds about 9oz & fits wonderfully in most diaper bag pockets.

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

Review #42: Re-Play No Spill Sippy Cup

The Replay no-spill cup is our current go-to cup. We have 8 of them, including at grandparents houses & daycare because they are by far my son's favorite cup. Best of all, after 2 kids, I can finally say I found a truly spill-free cup. These cups can be tipped, tossed, banged & bruised and never spill a drop! They are BPA Free, come in a variety of colors and are made from recycled milk jugs. Great product with a great purpose!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Review #41: CJ's BUTTer

I first discovered CJ's BUTTer almost a year ago at mommycon. I didn't cloth diaper, so I almost skipped them right over but I am happy I stopped when had realized that I ran out of diaper cream for my son & didn't pack extra on our trip. I figured I'd give CJ's a try and I've never turned back. It is all natural, works perfectly and comes in plenty of different scents. We currently have the balm, the quick stick & the spritz. We use the "Monkey Farts" spritz with every diaper change, the quick stick in the car & the balm in the nursery. Not only do we use it for diaper rashes but we use it for bug bites, dry skin, chapped lips, and whatever else comes along!

Sunday, May 7, 2017

Stop the Mom-Shaming

The internet, and real world, have become a place where everyone feels like they can just give their opinion without any consequence or care for others feelings. This particularly rings long in mom circles in what is referred to as “Mom-Shaming.” Now there is a fine line between nicely educating someone on something they may not know and straight up shaming someone for something you determine to be a wrong decision. Recently Jessica Simpson was shamed publicly, all over the internet, for what her daughter wore to her 5th birthday. A few months ago Hillary Duff was shamed for kissing her son. And Pink was even shamed for using a microwave while pregnant. But celebrities are not the only ones who are being shamed. There are internet groups specifically made to shame others for not being “perfect.”

According to a study in October 2016 by 80% of moms report being mom-shamed. 67% were shamed by other moms. 64% were shamed for their feeding choices. However less than .5% report changing any behavior due to the shaming. Therefore there is nothing good coming from this.

What are thing moms report being shamed for? Breastfeeding, formula feeding, medicated birth, C-section, adopting, going back to work, staying at home, using a babysitter, cosleeping, not room sharing, being a single mom, traveling to soon, choice of foods, screen time, being a helicopter parent, being a free range parent, not being involved in the school, not having a set schedule, etc This list goes on & on & on.

Personally, I will never forget the first time I was publically mom-shamed. It was a backhanded comment in a bathroom at an airport by a stranger.  She commented on how she liked my son’s carrier & how wonderful I was to be wearing him close. She then asked if I was breastfeeding him. When I responded no, she said “I just figured since you love him enough to wear him, you’d love him enough to breastfeed” That comment will sit with me for a long long time. What a horrible woman to infer that I didn’t love my son because I don’t breastfeed? And those moms who don’t babywear don’t love their children as much as those who do? And why would she ever think that was something acceptable to say? She was long gone before I picked my jaw up off the floor and left that bathroom, shocked by her comments.  Had she asked why, or wanted to be informed, I would have gladly have shared my story of why I formula fed from birth however, like many others she decided to shame instead of open her mind.

What happened to the old fashioned saying “If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all”? I think lots of people need to go back and watch Bambi a few times to get a dose of good advice.  Mothers should be here to support and love each other, not tear each other down. So please, stand up for other moms when you see this happening & help to stop the shaming. 

Friday, May 5, 2017

Flying with Car Seats

Why should children fly with car seats?

Recent news this week has struck about a flight to Bangkok in which severe turbulence caused at least 22 injuries including 3 babies who broke their spines.  Babies under the age of two are allowed to be "lap babies" and children of any age are not currently required to use any type of child passenger restraint on airplanes like they are in cars. Some airlines have stated their protocol in an emergency is to have the mother place the baby on the floor of the plane. Most encourage parents to buy a seat for their baby but don't require it. However, air travel is quite safe so rarely do we hear about the dangers. Before I heard about them, I flew with my son on my lap.

According to the FAA, in nonfatal accidents, in-flight turbulence is the leading cause of injuries to airline passengers and flight attendants. Each year approximately 58 people are injured by turbulence when not wearing their seatbelts. Generally, two-thirds of turbulence-related accidents occur at or above 30,000 feet.

Many people fly every day and are perfectly fine. Air travel is generally very safe, but I am a mother that worries about the "what-ifs" What if we were on a plane with horrible turbulence? What if I couldn't protect my child? The fastened seatbelt sign is there for a reason. Unless a child has a car seat, they aren't properly restrained. Most children under the age of 5 do not fit correctly in a lap belt, leaving them still vulnerable to injuries.

The truth is simple, the safest place for a child during a flight is in their car seat. Most of the time you will need a car seat at your final destination anyway, so please don't check the seat..... use it.

Now you may be thinking: "But that car seat is WAY too heavy" and I am with you on this one. Which is why I purchased our Cosco Scenera Next. This seat is a simple install, airplane approved & very lightweight.

"But how will I get it to the gate?" I usually just toss the car seat into the stroller(with the carry-ons) and then put PJ on my back. But you may not like that idea, so there is an awesome car seat travel accessory. It is a very simple tool that hooks your car seat to your wheeled carry-on & the child can even ride in it! Another awesome tool is the Car Seat Travel Cart which is a set of wheels you can attach to your car seat .

"But they won't be comfortable" Now that's just silly. We don't use that excuse when we are driving in the car, do we? If anything, parents report children feel safe and protected in their familiar car seat.

Now, I understand there are many parents who travel with lap babies and make the informed decision to travel as such. That is their decision and I am not here to judge anyone's situation. If you didn't buy a seat for your lap baby, I encourage you to still bring that car seat to the gate & ask if there is an extra seat so you can bring your car seat aboard & strap your baby in safely. Southwest Airlines and their "open seating" is amazing for this benefit. They are well known to allow parents to bring their seat on board if there is an open seat. However, once your child is old enough that they have their own seat, please bring that car seat on board!

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Review #40: Enfamil AR

When my first child was 4 months old, we realized what we thought was just excessive spit-up was actually severe acid reflux. Along with medication, we changed her formula. After a few different ones, we found Enfamil AR was the best fit. Enfamil AR is a milk-based formula with iron. It is thickened with rice starch to help fight the reflux. For us it was a wonderful fit!

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Review #39: Munchkin Formula Dispenser

Both my children were formula fed for over a year. This means lots of formula was needed on the go. We tried many different formula dispensers before I realized we were always grabbing the Munchkin Formula Dispensers. It has 3 sections that each holds 9oz of powdered formula. It's easy to fill, doesn't leak & easy to pour. 

Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Review #38: Munchkin Dishwasher Basket

We had a Munchkin Dishwasher Basket while both of my children were little. This is an awesome simple little tool that makes life easier. The top holds the middles straight to avoid getting pools of water. The bottom is perfect for all the little valves. It even fits nicely in the top shelf of most dishwashers!

Monday, May 1, 2017

Review #37: Up & Up Advantage Formula

When I was pregnant with my son, we had made a mindful, educated decision to formula feed him from birth. I started immediately researching the nutrients, ingredients, and cost of different formulas to make sure we were starting with our first choice formula. Luckily our son immediately agreed with our decision of Up & Up Advantage. This formula is a generic target brand comparable to Similac Advance. It is a milk-based formula with iron and was designed to be as close to breast milk as formula can get. The cost was also the best we could find in all our comparison shopping. When you use cartwheel discounts, target red card and their already affordable larger containers, it definitely lessens the blow of the cost of formula.