Revolving Door of Toys

Every few weeks Mommy decides that I need to go toy shopping!  This idea terrifies Daddy since he is the only one that gets a paycheck (Mommy works at home for free taking care of me – I’ll talk more about how to hire your own free stay at home Mommy some other time).  Thankfully my Mommy isn’t so silly that she goes and spends money when we go toy shopping.  No, she doesn’t steal stuff – my Mommy is more creative than that.  Instead, she sets up a toy store in our living room or in my bedroom.  Then I walk around and decide what toys I’m going to “buy.”  After I have made my selection, I pay for the new toys by putting some of my old toys in the closet.  I don’t lose these toys forever though because they are then part of the next store.  This works well because sometimes I realize that Mommy and I choose the wrong toy to use as payment for my new ones.  I love how I don’t get too bored with my playroom since the stuff in there is always changing.  Well, at least some of the stuff is – I have never ever put away my Little Tikes EasyScore Basketball Set or my Alphabet Floor Puzzle or for that matter most of my Fisher-price Lil’ Zoomers but these are my favorites and giving them up might cause some permanent damage.  Our little toy store works great for us and for several of my friends that have tried it (Mommy likes to tell other Mommies about how smart she is) and I figure if I work with Mommy and Daddy now to save money then maybe just maybe they will let me spend some of that savings when I really want something like my first car.

BubBLES

Pop . . . Pop . . . Pop, Pop, Pop!  Bubbles might perfect.  You see I can play with them all I want and Mommy insists that I’m not getting dirty.  I still don’t know how that can be since they explode when I touch them leaving behind a slightly slimy feel and a wonderful smell – I think this batch is grape – but whatever.  Part of what I love about bubbles, or as I prefer bubBLES, is there is no clean up.  That’s right, no torture in the form of hand washing required when finished.  They are also really quick to get started.  In fact, we make a batch about once a month and Mommy stores it in containers until I want it.  She always makes sure that the container we are playing out of is little so I can carry it around or maybe she doesn’t want me to spill too much but either way I like the little container.

At 14 months, I am still working on mastering blowing bubbles and I often end up with nothing but a wet hand, but that is okay.  Mommy blows bubbles with me and that is the more fun part anyway.  When Mommy blows the bubbles or when she helps me use my bubble blowing gadget, I get to run around and pop the floating fun.  Nothing beats being totally surrounded by bubbles.  Even Mommy’s smile gets bigger when I ask to play with bubbles.

Rainy day?  No problem.  Ask Mommy to play with bubbles inside.  My Mommy usually has me do this in the kitchen or in the empty bath tub – then when I am finished we run a damp cloth over the  floor where we are playing and Mommy thanks me for helping her clean??!?!?  So any day you need some extra fun, bust out the bubbles and smile away!

 

Hydration Please

My Mommy has always carried a water bottle around.  She says that it helps her to stay properly hydrated (whatever that means).  Well, I got to thinking, if she needs to carry one around then I probably should as well.  I started carrying her bottle from place to place when I was about seven months old.  I really wanted to drink out of it too but the bite valve kept me from getting anything.  Eventually, Mommy went and bought me my own water bottles.  My water bottles are cool like Mommy’s – meaning that they have a straw and they won’t spill.

Every morning she fills one of my water bottles and puts it somewhere that I can reach it; then, I can go and get it whenever I want.  If we leave the house to go somewhere (other than a quick errand to the store) or we go outside, we take my water bottle with us.   I drink between 8 and 12 ounces of water a day, which is okay now that I’m big.  When I was littler, the doctor told Mommy that I could have one ounce of water for every month I was old.  I didn’t like that limit but Mommy said it was important so I could stay healthy.

It wasn’t easy teaching me to drink out of a water bottle at first, so Mommy had to search for ones that she could help me learn to use.  My first water bottles had a spot where Mommy could squeeze and help me get my water.  I used this one for a couple of months.  Now that I have the hang of it, I have some that are bigger and keep my water cold for a long time.  I hope that your hydration journey goes as well as mine!  Cheers!

Playtex Baby First Lil’ Gripper Twist ‘n Click Straw Trainer Cup, 7 Ounce

Playtex Insulated Twist ‘n Click Straw Cup 9 oz – 2 Pack

My Fine China

I am a foodie.  I insist on having a fork, spoon and plate if Mom and Dad do; after all, it is the most civilized way to eat.  I also insist on quality.  For the longest time my parents try to trick me with fat plastic handles that are not like Mommy and Daddy’s fork and spoon in the least; however, recently they have come to understand my plea.  Daddy finally took the time to scope out the web and find me the perfect flatware and a pretty nifty set of dishes.  The Untangled Living Anyware Stainless Steel Dish Set has passed my observant eye and made meal time more enjoyable. I am perfectly capable of using this fork and spoon as well as I did the ones with fat handles. The fork tines are more pointy than rounded baby forks so I have had greater success stabbing my food with this.  I also have yet to have any issues with stabbing myself and even the couple of times I have stabbed my parents (a totally accident I promise) there have been no ill effects. The plate and bowl have a good weight to them which keeps them from sliding all around when I am trying to get my food onto the fork or spoon. The plate and bowl aren’t exactly small but Mom and Dad are willing to take them to restaurants as they have made it much easier for me to scoop up my food with my utensils. When placing food on a tray or regular restaurant plate there often isn’t a lip or enough of a lip on the plate for me to properly get the food onto my spoon or fork and the silly plastic plates just slid all over the table.

The set is quality all around, Daddy says you should be able to scoop ice cream with any fork or spoon and not worry about them deforming and these pass the test. Being stainless steel, the set cleans up easy where plastic sometimes was hard to get greasy foods off of. We also don’t have to worry about BPA or any other manner of yet to be labeled harmful plastic chemicals leaching into my food. The set was expensive and Daddy says the money will have to come out of my college fund (he says that about everything), but it is definitely worth it.

Untangled Living Anyware Collection Children’s Stainless Steel Dish Set, 5 Pieces, Gecko

Paint!

Another day stuck inside – silly workmen – and today I couldn’t even watch since they had out the blowtorch.  To help curb my disappointment, Mommy made this fabulously slimy and colorful stuff she kept calling finger paint.  I’m not sure why she called it that since she wanted me to put the paint on my highchair tray but whatever.

Before I was able to start painting, Mommy had to mix the paint together.  First, she cut an old egg crate down so it only had four holes.  Then, she put some light corn syrup in each hole and then one drop of food coloring (she used four different colors).  Next, she mixed the goo together and put me in my art shirt which just happens to be one of her old t-shirts.  Finally, into my high chair I went and let the mess begin!

I played in this sticky concoction for quite a while.  I had to ask to get the sticky off of my hands a couple of times because my fingers were starting to stick together but hey the art was worth it!  We didn’t get to keep this masterpiece when I was finished because it was on my tray but next time Mommy says we can paint on roll paper! 

Now for a note from Mommy: Today’s sensory experience was just about as easy to set up and tear down as yesterday’s!  Thankfully, this finger paint comes off easily with a baby wipe.  It is also safe to be eaten (though Little Guy didn’t try).  As far as proportion of corn syrup to color, I probably used two tablespoons to each drop and that created very bright colors.

 

Eating Out Essentials

My family likes to eat out every now and then.  I think it is especially great because I get to watch all sorts of other people while eating dinner with Mom and Dad.  I pretty sure my mom really likes it too because she doesn’t have to do the dishes when we are finished.  In fact, someone else comes and takes them away and they disappear forever!  Anyway, in my eating out experience I have discovered that there are a few things that make my experience more enjoyable.  And let’s be honest if my experience isn’t enjoyable than no one else’s is either.

1. Table Mats – these handy dandy little things let Mom put my food right on the table without having to worry about wiping the table down first (honestly ,she prefers that I use a plate but I often dump my food out so she might as well be a step ahead of me).  They are interesting to look at and my favorite ones come with non-rolling crayons and I get to color before my food arrives.  Mommy also likes them because she can roll up my mess and not feel bad for the staff that has to clean up after me.  Here is a link to my favorite kind: Classy Kid Germ Defense Placemat – Pack of 20

2. Toothbrush Holder for Utensils – Yep I said it a toothbrush holder.  My mommy used to make me eat with those horrible plastic utensils that come in a toddler travel kit but I hated that I couldn’t poke anything with my fork and that my spoon was a weird shape.  Thanks to my grandpa and his brain, Mommy bought a toothbrush holder and she puts one of my regular Gerber Graduates Forks and one of my regular Munchkin Spoons in it.  Mommy is happy because my utensils stay clean (baggies didn’t work because they were always tearing); I am happy because I get my normal stuff.

3. Clorox Disinfecting Wipes To Go Pack! – Lots of times when I get to our table at a restaurant my chair is less than perfectly clean and I don’t want to be sitting in someone else’s pureed peas (they were gross enough to eat when I was that little).  So, now I have instructed my parents to clean my chair off first with one of these wipes.  I was considerate enough to find a pack that fits nicely in the diaper bag yet has some real cleaning power.

Now that you know what you need, I hope that you can have the awesome eating out experiences that I have.  While you are at it, go ahead and order yourself a meal – it is often times cheaper than Mommy or Daddy getting something big enough to share.  May I recommend the steak done medium well with a sweet potato or the turkey dinner; both are delicious!

Birthday Tradition

My husband and I were trying to come up with something special we could do for our son every year on his birthday.  We weren’t looking for anything expensive or elaborate just something to help him remember his previous year and to let him know how special he is to us.  After much online searching and asking friends, we decided to make a quick digital memory book.  Now eventually (like when he’s in his 30’s since that is when I will have the time), I plan to make him a real scrapbook, but for now choosing about 100 pictures and arranging them with the help of Shutterfly was our best choice.  It was  an easy project to complete though I will admit it made me tear up several times.  Here is what we included:

  • A cover page with a head shot from every month
  • Pictures from every month (arranged together by month)
  • A story or short note about the month
  • A letter from my husband and I to our son

I know that he is young and that for now the book will be just like any other, but someday I hope that he looks back at these with fond memories.

My Little Red Wagon

Thanks to some beautiful 60 degree days in January this year I got to try out my biggest Christmas present – a Radio Flyer Wagon!  I didn’t get the Radio Flyer Wagon that Mom and Dad remember from when they were little; no, no, no I got the deluxe addition (Thanks Great Grandma and Grandpa).  My wagon has seat backs and cup holders just to name a few of its amenities.  Anyway, Grandpa and Mom took me on a walk after putting it together.  I thought I was going to have to wait forever but Grandpa had it built in 10 minutes!

My ride is super smooth and my seat is very comfortable.  In fact, I made Mommy let me eat snack in the wagon when we got home from our walk because I wasn’t ready to leave my throne.  Mommy and Daddy think my wagon is awesome too because it is super easy to steer, thanks to independent front wheels.  Grandpa likes that the handle is longer now than it was when Mommy was little because that means he doesn’t have to bend over to reach it.  This present is a winner – everyone loves it!  You should get one then maybe when we are older we can have wagon races.