Family · Gift Guide · Motherhood · Parenting

An (incredibly) meaningful gift for your child

Our kiddos just finished their (first for Sailor and second for Dashel) year of daycare. I can’t believe how fast their (school) year went… and I can’t help but be so grateful for the daycare they attend. As a working mom, it’s hard to leave your kiddos for the day- there’s a lot of missing them, and sometimes, early on, some guilt, about not being able to stay home with them. But honestly, I couldn’t love their daycare more. The teachers and staff are thoughtful, sweet, and engaging. Everything is always safe and clean, and my kids are learning so much, including sharing, manners, their letters/colors/numbers, even Spanish! It’s a long road of school ahead of them, and I’m glad that this is the start of their student careers….

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With the end of the school year here, and summer swinging in, I got to thinking a lot about graduations, moving on and growing up. (My kiddos will be in new rooms with new teachers when they come back in the fall!) Although their high school graduation seems like eons away (…and the thought of it seriously starts to bring tears to my eyes…) I started a graduation gift for each of them to give them on the day they finish their high school careers. (Hold on to your hats, this is a gift in the making, that takes quite a while…) I purchased two books, a different one for each of them, and had their teacher’s write personalized notes (with the dates) in each book. I plan on getting every teacher to write a note to them for each of their school years; they will be able to go back and see what their teacher’s thought of them from the time they were 6 months old to the time they were 18. (I’ve already read some of the notes and they are so sweet!!)

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Of course “Oh the Places You’ll Go” by Dr. Suess is a timeless classic that many people give as graduation gifts, but if you want to branch out, here are the two I chose. (They have the sweetest stories/messages). Do you have a long term gift for your child?

The Wonderful Things You Will Be
I Wish You More
Family · Home · Motherhood · Shopping

Car shopping …

Car shopping is something that sounds like it should be fun- a new car! Captain’s chairs! All the cup holders you could want! How exciting! But in reality it’s a bear. The part where you get to look at cars and test drive is fun… but the financial part is the worst! It’s a whole lot of sitting in uncomfortable chairs, sometimes with the sun in your eyes, feeling hungry and thirsty, and the waiting… oh the waiting… while you go back and forth and quibble about mileage and money down and monthly payments.. ugh… it’s enough to make your head spin…

Steve and I also have very similar personalities when it comes to wheeling and dealing… neither of us like it. I’m not a super pushy person and feel uncomfortable in situations where confrontation is involved… so even though everyone is supposed to be making everyone feel like family, it’s actually an incredibly awkward situation. Steve’s aunt, on the other hand, is super confident when it comes to car shopping. She literally comes in, tells them what she wants, and what she’s going to pay, and that’s it! Boom! She makes it happen. We should have brought her tonight. Ha!

How about you and your partner? Is one of you more the take charge deal maker? How do you deal in situations where you are making major purchases? The whole thing feels so heavy and important and I feel way too much like an adult…

but… we got a new car!! With a third row of seats! And it’s a big, juicy, van! (I’m totally embracing #momlife amiright?!)

Family · Motherhood · Parenting

A great trick to calm your toddler

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So, we have officially reached the stage of toddlerdom where Dash will sometimes get so upset about something that he’s in tears and cannot catch his breath, and therefore cannot articulate what’s wrong- although I’m fully aware that there may not be anything wrong except for the fact that he’s 2 and the world is a tough place… I started using this little phrase to help him calm down and catch his breath…

Smell the flowers & blow out the birthday candles. 

I say this little phrase to him and then demonstrate a nice deep breath through my nose (smelling the flowers) and a nice deep exhale through my mouth (blowing out the birthday candles.) I only have to do it a few times while rubbing his back before I start to hear his breath slow and the tears start to subside. I love this little trick! It really helps to get your child focused and relaxed and gives them a moment to regroup. I can’t remember where I first heard this little trick, but apparently it’s totally a thing because I googled it and found this.  Have you used this trick before? What tips do you have about calming your little one down when they are seemingly inconsolable? I’d love to hear- every little trick to add to our toolboxes helps!

Family · Inspiration · Motherhood

The wisdom in children’s literature

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Raising our children to be lovers of literature is important to Steve and I; so we are trying to get our kids excited about books and reading right from the start. Dash is already a little bookworm who gets giddy for trips to the library and at buying new books. When I think back to some of my favorite books as a child, I think so fondly about reading exciting tales spun by Roald Dahl and the real love I could feel while reading The Velveteen Rabbit. I recently stumbled across a great article that articulated some of the most profound passages and quotes from children’s literature, that we may not have understood when we read them, but can certainly appreciate the gravity they carry now. (Excuse me, while I go read A Wrinkle in Time again.)

Here are some of my personal favorites;

“When someone is crying, of course, the noble thing to do is comfort them. But if someone is trying to hide their tears, it may also be noble to pretend that you do not notice them.”

Horseradish by Lemony Snicket

How lucky I am to have something that makes saying goodbye so hard.

The Adventures of Winnie the Pooh by A.A.Milne

“It’s no use going back to yesterday, because I was a different person then.”

Alice in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll

“The moment you doubt whether you can fly, you cease for ever to be able to do it.”Peter Pan by J.M. Barrie

“And so for a time it looked as if all the adventures were coming to an end; but that was not to be.”
The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe by C.S. Lewis

“Believing takes practice.”
A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

“You must never feel badly about making mistakes … as long as you take the trouble to learn from them. For you often learn more by being wrong for the right reasons than you do by being right for the wrong reasons.”

The Phantom Tollbooth by Norton Juster

“I don’t understand it any more than you do, but one thing I’ve learned is that you don’t have to understand things for them to be.”

A Wrinkle in Time by Madeleine L’Engle

“‘What day is it?’, asked Winnie the Pooh.

‘It’s today,’ squeaked Piglet.

‘My favorite day,’ said Pooh.”

The Adventures of Winnie the Pooh by A. A. Milne

Submitted by Rose Freil via Facebook
Photo Credit

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Gift Guide · Motherhood · Shopping

Gift guide for new babies & Mamas!

So, two of my good friends had babies just this week! I’m so excited for them! I can’t wait to meet their little bundles of joy! (They are both first time Mama’s so it’s a totally new adventure!!!)

I’m hoping to get to see them soon and bring them some cute little tokens to make them and their little ones smile. If you have some friends having babies in your life and need something soon, here are some ideas to get you started! (Click on captions under photos for links!)

soundbub™Your New Best Friend
SoundBub, portable bluetooth speaker, soother (makes white noise) and storyteller
Milestone Baby Cards
Milestone cards
Personalized State Teether
Pearhead Photo Background Chalkboard
Baby milestone chalkboard for monthly photo shoots
Gift cert. to have baby’s receiving blanket turned into a lovey!
Nothing in this BAG belongs to ME | Large Canvas Tote bag | Black Tote Bag | Screen Print Tote | Mom Life Bag | Mom Bag | Funny Tote
Nothing in this bag belongs to me tote
Sea Life Tummy Time Toy
Tummy time activity wedge
Pleased to meet you baby journal
The Happiest Baby on the Block: The New Way to Calm Crying and Help Your Baby Sleep Longer
This DVD! Helped out with some major soothing!
Milestone blanket

 

Family · Motherhood · Pregnancy

Hospital bag!

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Steve carrying in our hospital bags

My friend is having her baby on Thursday! I’m so excited for her! We were chatting tonight about what to bring/pack in her hospital bag…here’s what I packed and recommend! (Disclaimer: I’m a certified overpacker- you were warned)

Clothing: The key to this category is all comfort!

-Tank dresses, loose t shirt, bathrobe or this!!!!, loose fitting lounge pants, <nursing>tanks and soft comfy bras, cardigan/hoodie/light sweater, slippers, a comfy outfit to go home in

*You will probably end up wearing the hospital issued mesh (I know) underwear! If you have a few pairs left in your room, take them home with you- you will want them for the first days home! The hospital will also provide you with pads during your stay.

Toiletries:

-Makeup face wipes, toothbrush, toothpaste, contact case, glasses, eye drops, body wash/shampoo/conditioner, shower cap/dry shampoo, hair brush/hair products/ moisturizer, chapstick/gloss, hair elastics, and I liked having a basic makeup set- eyeliner, mascara, highlighter, under eye cream- you don’t absolutely need it, but I felt a little more put together when all those photos were being snapped.

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Steve reading Red Sox news to Dash

Comfort items:

-My own pillow, a soft roll of your own toilet paper, face mist, a few snacks for you and hubby (a couple of Cliff bars, your fav candy), mints/tic tacs, flip flops for shower, chargers, small bluetooth speaker, camera, blanket for your spouse (for that seriously comfy pullout couch),  a book/magazine, ipad, earbuds and some music/downloaded podcast, anything you might want for breastfeeding (nipple cream, pads)

Nice to have:

An extra duffle/tote bag, notebook and pen, a place to save and remember this amazing day! sleep mask, your own towel

Baby stuff:

-A going home outfit, car seat and newborn insert for car seat, cotton swaddles, (do yourself a favor and get the one’s with velcro!) a soft baby blanket, boppy pillow, burp clothes

Hospital will provide: diapers, pacifier (only some hospitals provide this- so if you want one, you might want to pack one, Sailor really took to this one), formula/bottles, breast pump, undershirts, vaseline, wipes, baby blankets, newborn hat

Also: Don’t forget you picture i.d., insurance card, any hospital paperwork you may already have and a basic list of the most important things you envision for your birth to give to the nurse.

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Welcome to the world Dashel!
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Ahoy Sailor!