My child loves to watch Grav3YardGirl‘s Does This Thing Really Work? videos on YouTube. When he’s feeling sleepy or in need of a cuddle, he’ll climb into my lap and ask, “Mommy, can we watch a Bunny video?”
I was skeptical, even after watching Bunny’s review…But this thing is actually pretty great! We spent an hour or so blowing cherry bubbles all over the back yard, and I managed to catch a few…they actually DO taste just like cherry! O’s strategy was to stick his face right in front of the machine, and he caught a lot of bubbles, but he didn’t like getting the bubble solution all over his face.
You get two packets of bubble solution with the machine (cherry and grape), and refills are available in packs of three flavors. The packet of cherry lasted a lot longer than I thought it would, and we even got a little more mileage out of it by pouring a little water in at the end.
I’m not sure if you’re supposed to do that. Maybe don’t be like me.
The machine takes 4 AA batteries and you’ll need a little screwdriver to get the back panel off. I picked up an eyeglass repair kit that’s super handy for these things.
I love this thing. As long as it holds up, I can see it providing hours of summer fun for my boy. In fact, I may not have to make a dessert for the rest of the summer. Dinner’s over? Go outside and play with your bubble machine!
Just don’t drink the bubble solution…I’m pretty sure it says specifically not to on the box.
**Disclosure: This is NOT a sponsored post. I purchased this machine and refill pack with my own money. All opinions are my own. This post contains affiliate links.**
Well guys, I guess it’s time to admit that I am once again out of the running for Mother of the Year. Yes, I know it’s a huge surprise, but I’ve just made too many mistakes to think anyone would nominate me.
Don’t believe me? I submit the following:
I allowed O to practically inhale an entire chocolate bunny on Easter morning. Sure, it was a smallish one, but chocolate for breakfast? That’s a mommy no-no for sure.
I have also given my child donuts, birthday cake, and cookies for breakfast. Not all the time, of course, but with enough frequency to make the Mother of the Year prize out of my reach. But come on, who doesn’t eat leftover birthday cake the day after their birthday?! Or the day after anyone’s birthday, if they send some cake home with you.
And I guess, while we’re talking about food, my kid has had McDonald’s, Wendy’s, Burger King, and Arby’s. He really loves the chicken nuggets. And fries. Once again, only occasionally…But the fact that I have allowed him to consume MECHANICALLY SEPARATED CHICKEN GOO that has been deep-fried to oblivion probably booted me out of the running.
I also let him play with the sweeper, mostly in hopes that he will accidentally turn it on and scare the crap out of himself. I can’t help it, that’s damned hilarious.
I’ve forgotten to tell him he can get up when he’s in trouble (I refuse to call it time out), only to remember 20 minutes later.
I’ve lied and said we were out of a snack that he asked for because I really wanted to eat the last one.
I don’t let him flush the toilet eleventy billion times.
He really needed (his words) a blueberry breakfast bar but I wouldn’t let him have one because he didn’t eat his lunch.
This morning, he came in the bathroom when I was brushing my teeth. He wanted to brush his, so I picked up his toothbrush and started to put toothpaste on it.
He wanted to do it himself. In an attempt to avoid a tantrum, I held the toothpaste and brush out to him…But the damage had been done. He turned and ran to the living room, threw himself on a chair, and sobbed for five minutes over the injustice of it all.
“Am I the worst mommy on Earth, buddy?”
He sniffed, rubbed his eyes, and said, “Yes Mommy. I fink so.”
Suddenly, everyone I know is having babies. Seriously, I can think of at least four ladies due this summer, and probably another three due this winter. I was starting to worry that I’d never find unique gifts for all of them until I found My 1st Years.
My 1st Years is a fairly new company, founded in 2010 and located in the UK, that aims to provide unique baby gifts that don’t break the bank…And as a huge bonus, they personalize your gift for free.
The selection of gifts is impressive… I had so much trouble narrowing my first order down that it took me a few days to decide. When I finally did make my selection, I was surprised at how quickly the package arrived. Ten days from my order date from the UK? I’ll take it.
By the way, if you are ordering a gift, have it sent directly to the recipient. Every order comes in a beautiful complimentary gift box, and the package itself will have a big ol’ Royal Mail sticker on it. I don’t know about you, but it certainly made me feel pretty fancy!
My 1st Years was kind enough to provide me with one of their lovely products so I could do a review. I agonized over the decision, drove The BF nuts, and finally…finally, I chose the Gingham Blue Trim Robe in the biggest size offered (2-3 years).
Oh my goodness y’all, this is lovely. The robe is beautifully made, with his name embroidered on the front. It fits perfectly, and the boy absolutely loves wearing it.
He loves to put it on right after his bath so he can lounge around before bed in comfort and style. On chilly mornings, he will go find his robe and strut around the house with it on. I happen to love the fact that the belt is actually attached to the robe, so I don’t have to worry about it getting lost.
I could not be more pleased with this product, and this company in general. I have a number of items bookmarked for future gifts, and I just know that my friends will love them.
Do yourself a favor and check them out… Not only do they offer lots of beautiful, keepsake-quality gifts for babies and young toddlers, but they have some great stuff for mom and dad, too.
**My 1st Years provided the pictured product at no cost to me, in exchange for an honest review of their site. All opinions and photographs are my own.**
I’ve been clear on my stance on raisins… If you’re new around here, let me catch you up: I hate them. The taste is foul, they stick in your teeth, and they look like rabbit turds. I can’t really think of a single redeeming factor.
My child, however, loves the nasty little things… Give him a little box and he will gladly cram them into his mouth as if they were something actually delicious. He goes through phases… Sometimes he’ll only ask for raisins a couple of times a day, and others he’s a broken record.
“Rasins? Rasins, mama? MAMA. RASINS. I hab it, the rasins? Pease?”
So it was one of those days… And I was trying to get some work done so I didn’t leap up the second he asked for them, so he decided to take matters into his own hands. I found him sitting on the kitchen floor with a bowl full of raisins in front of him, happily stuffing his face.
“Hey, buddy…where’s the box?”
He beamed with pride and said, “I frow it away!”
Rather than find a container for the remaining raisins, I decided to make some bread. Oddly enough, I actually do like cinnamon raisin bread, and I figured I had everything to make it. When it was time for O’s lunch, I took a break from my audio files and gathered the necessary ingredients. Once he was safely
contained settled in his high chair, I got to work.
Cinnamon Raisin Quick Bread
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cup sugar
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup canola oil
2 large eggs
1 cup milk (I used 2%)
1 cup unsweetened almond milk (this was just an attempt to use up some almond milk that wasn’t my usual brand…feel free to use 2 cups of regular milk.)
1/2 cup raisins
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoons cinnamon (or to taste, however you like your cinnamon/sugar mixture)
Preheat your oven to 350° and spray two loaf pans with Baker’s Joy.
In a large bowl, combine all dry ingredients (except 1/2 cup of sugar and cinnamon). Add oil, milk, and eggs (I like to measure out the milk, crack the eggs into it, and whisk it all together, but you do you) and stir until all is combined. Add raisins and stir again.
In a seperate bowl, mix cinnamon and sugar.
Scoop a little batter into each loaf pan, then sprinkle some of the cinnamon sugar on top. Keep alternating layers of batter and sugar until batter is gone. Make sure to get equal amounts into the loaf pans. Using a knife, swirl the batter and sugar together. Bake for 60 – 70 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Let cool on a wire rack before serving.
So yes, the term “quick bread” is relative here since it takes a while to bake, but it’s worth it. I didn’t get much almond flavor, and I was sad about that, but the brand of almond milk I got sucked. Seriously, it was like water. Lesson learned!
I have accidentally eaten three pieces already, so I should warn you that it’s pretty irresistible.
I’ve been trying to come up with healthy breakfast ideas for O lately that can be made ahead. He’s been eating a ton of oatmeal lately (both the refrigerator kind and quickly-cooked that morning), and there’s always some sort of fruit involved. For a few days he had whole-wheat waffles with peanut butter and maple syrup, but then the toaster tried to kill me.
Seriously, flames shot out of the bottom. That’ll wake you up.
I bought some barley for the cauliflower salad I made to go with my beer chicken, and I thought it would make a nice breakfast for O. Barley is full of good things like fiber (not that my kid really needs more fiber…) and whatnot.
The only problem is that it takes about 40 minutes to cook and we just don’t have that kind of time in the morning.
Oh, hello there crock pot.
Yes, my favorite kitchen item (besides my 8 inch chef knife) can also do breakfast duty.
This is seriously the easiest thing in the world, and it’s entirely customizable. You can stir in peanut butter or maple syrup, nuts, granola, dried fruit, fresh fruit, chia seeds, almond milk… Whatever makes your heart sing!
Overnight breakfast barley
1 cup pearl barley, rinsed
4 1/2 cups water
Before you go to bed, use a mesh strainer to rinse barley, then dump it in the crock pot. Add water, give it a stir, and set it on low. I got mine started around 11:00, and I woke up around 7:30. I’d say at least 6 hours should do it.
To serve, I threw some frozen berries in a bowl, spooned the barley on top, and then stirred in some sliced almonds, honey, cinnamon, and a little milk.
The frozen berries cooled the hot barley, and the heat from the barley thawed the berries. It was a delicious breakfast that was really simple and healthy.
I spooned the leftover barley into an air tight container and put it in the fridge, but you could easily freeze it in individual servings.
What are your favorite healthy breakfast ideas?
I think he knew something was up, because yesterday morning my boy started trying to wake up around 5:30. Birthday or not, this mama wasn’t having it. He did eventually go back to sleep, but at seven he was awake for real.
We went downstairs for a diaper change and some refrigerator oatmeal for breakfast. By the time he was done eating, The BF was awake. I decided to let O open his gifts from us so he could spend the morning playing with them.
He loved his new mixing bowl and measuring cups/spoons so much that he had to take them in the bath. He has so much fun pretending to cook.
The birthday boy took a nap while I showered and daddy went off to cut wood.
Once we’d all cleaned up and made ourselves all presentable-like, we went to the restaurant, where we ate yummy Mexican food and partied pretty hard.
We had a wonderful time, and O loved seeing everyone. When we came home, he immediately stuck a pair of his brand-new big boy underwear on his head and went wild playing with his new toys.
As I was putting him to bed, I asked if he had a good day. He looked up at me with the sweetest smile and said, “Haybirday”.
And then The Bf and I might have helped ourselves to another piece of cake.
If you are thinking that you might like to take the plunge into parenthood, I want you to sit down an really think about something.
How do you feel about poop? More specifically, someone else’s poop. In your hand.
Because that’s the kind of thing you get to deal with when you become a parent.
If you just said, “Oh Hell no.” in response…
Maybe just get a house plant for now.
We’ve been on the go since Thursday, so I apologize for my lack of posts lately. Summer is a busy time for us, with birthdays and festivals and concerts and fairs… We try to cram as much fun into these few months of sun as possible.
Thursday, The BF’s mom invited O and I to the pool. He had a blast playing in the sprinklers of the splash pad, and while he played I got to have some grownup conversation with MIL (seriously, The BF’s Mom is just cumbersome. She will from now on be MIL) and some of The BF’s cousins.
Of course, what happens when the whitest person you know goes to the pool and forgets to out on sunscreen?
She gets sunburned, obviously.
On Friday, O and I spent the morning at my mom’s house, then we made a run to town with MIL and The BF’s nephew. As we were walking through the store, MIL pointed to a guy that was checking me out. When he saw that he’d be caught, he just shrugged as if to say he couldn’t help it and walked away. We had a good laugh about it, and Nephew wanted to know what was so funny. Rather than explain, MIL just pointed in a random direction. Apparently, at a woman in a wheelchair. We got a ten minute lecture on how we shouldn’t make fun of someone that was hurt from Nephew for that one.
Saturday, O and I drove to Lebanon to pick up a dozen donuts I’d ordered for Father’s Day. I’m surprised they made it home, let alone until Sunday.
We got home just in time for O to nap while I watched my old high school softball team play in the state championship game… They lost 1-0, but it was a great game and I’m super proud of them.
On Sunday, O and I went to the Strawberry Festival with MIL while The BF was fishing.
As I was getting the condiments for my tenderloin, a guy walked up behind me and exclaimed, “That’s huge! Where are you going to put it? You surely can’t eat the whole thing!” Little did he know that I absolutely could eat it all, but I explained that I was sharing it with my bottomless pit child.
After coming home, we let the boy nap for about an hour before heading out again. Our first stop was The BF’s grandpa’s house. He loves donuts, so we brought him one jelly filled and one bacon donut, plus some strawberries from the garden for good measure. O loves going to his house because he can play with the dog, a sweet, old beagle named Daisy.
We had dinner at Rancho Bravo. O loves the chips so much that I think he ate a whole basket of them, then he started in on my chicken nachos. Bottomless pit, that kid.
After dinner, we wished my dad a happy Father’s Day while O ran around like a maniac and counted water bottles with my mom.
Our final stop for the night was to visit The BF’s other set of grandparents. We chatted for a bit while O inhaled a snack of Goldfish, yogurt bites, raisins, and puffs (maybe a growth spurt?), and as we said goodbye they handed us a chocolate dessert to take home.
O was asleep not long after we got home, and The BF and I were both worn out. I poured two glasses of milk, grabbed a couple of spoons, and we ate every bit of that chocolate dessert. Poor little O didn’t even get a bite.
I think The BF had a great day. The present I ordered didn’t show up on time, he didn’t catch any fish, and he had to replace a belt on the van…but he still wore a smile on his face all day, and that’s really all that matters.
The BF’S mom and I took O and his cousin to town this morning.
After our errands were done, we stopped for lunch. Going anywhere with The BF’s mom is like traveling with a celebrity, because she knows everyone. At lunch, we saw her parents and sister…Aunt J picked O up to say hi and exclaimed, “What do you feed this kid?!”
I get that question a lot…I mean, he’s a tank of a child. Also? He has huge feet.
Anyway, feeding a toddler can be…frustrating. They’re fickle little creatures, so one day your sweet child will devour his steamed broccoli. The next day? Nope.
O is (obviously) typically a good eater, and he’s game to try just about anything you put in front of him (he gobbled up my fried okra at a restaurant once. I was both proud and sad, because I really wanted to eat my okra). I’ve found (through lots of trial and error) a handful of foods that are toddler approved and pretty simple. I wouldn’t be a very good blogger if I didn’t share them with my readers, so here you are, a list of a few of the things I feed my chid…though sometimes I feel like the answer to that question is, “Whatever isn’t nailed down.”
Breakfast cookies (Use any kind of dried fruit and nut that you like…These go over really well. I like to warm them in the toaster)
Pancakes and fresh fruit (I like to make a full batch of pancakes and freeze the leftovers. You can pop them in the toaster to warm ’em up)
Egg muffins (same deal, make a bunch at once and freeze them.)
Leftovers from last night’s dinner (easiest thing on the planet, just warm it up and it’s ready)
Peanut butter on toast, cottage cheese, fresh fruit
Mac and cheese with veggies (I start this one while he’s napping so it will be ready and cooled), fruit and yogurt
Brown rice with chicken/turkey/ham and veggies (really easy if you make the rice ahead and freeze it. Then just heat it up and add deli meat and steamed veggies) apple sauce
Chicken nuggets and sweet potato fries, apple slices or grapes
Snack tray (fill the spots in an ice cube tray with whatever you have on hand. O loves this)
Raisins or yogurt covered raisins (Fun fact: they go through some sort of time machine while being digested, and they come out looking like grapes again!)
Peanuts or cashews
Pretzels or crackers
Peanut butter and graham crackers/pretzels
Veggies and dip
My kid crams these things into his face by the fistful and I’m ok with it. For one thing, the yogurts help keep things going, so if he hasn’t pooped all day I hand him an open bag and let him go for it. The puffs are just really good, especially the peach flavor. Sweet potato is a close second (tied with banana) and blueberry comes in dead last. I love blueberries, but those puffs are nasty. Plus, the smell will knock you over. You open the can and it’s all, BLUEBERRY up in your face.
He drinks whole milk with every meal and snack, and water in between.
I also like to have canned soup on hand for when I find my lunch options limited. It happens occasionally, and sometimes I just don’t want to go to the store. The boy really loves split pea and ham.
For dinner, he eats whatever we’re having. I have no desire to fix two seperate meals so why even get that started?
What are your favorite toddler foods?