It’s that time of year again. Long pant wearing. Jacket required. Sock necessary. Fall. At least in Ohio it is. This year, I have found that I have a new problem to face with fall clothing. I have to wrangle baby socks. I have tried many solutions to no avail – the leaning tower of socks that inevitably fell over unlike the real leaning tower, the baggie of socks – who has time or the free hands to open and close a bag, and the pile of socks – has anyone seen his other blue shoe sock. However, in true obsessively organized fashion I have found a solution. Sock baskets! In my teaching days, I called them pencil baskets and many people use them to sort silverware, but they are the perfect size for baby socks and probably even toddler socks. Now, Baby’s socks are neatly placed in pairs in these baskets. Yes, baskets. No, he doesn’t have so many pairs as to require more than one, but I find it helpful to sort them by type as well. We have a basket for shoe looking socks, one for slipper socks, and one for regular gym socks. So save yourself some sanity and buy sock baskets for your little one’s drawers. And while your at it get some fun socks as well!
Wow! Time surely does fly when you add a baby to the mix. I feel bad that I haven’t written in forever but then again what can you expect from a busy mom? Life has been full of playing and feeding with sleep sprinkled in. My now 6 month old hardly naps but is a great nighttime sleeper so I can’t complain. Instead, I have become excellent at one handedly doing several tasks (i.e. folding laundry, making beds, etc.) as well as making tasks more interesting (envision the dancing and singing show stopping musical style number version of dusting the living room). I still can’t live without my ecosash carrier, though “the boy” will play by himself for a bit now. My Boppy pillow also continues to save my life or more accurately my back. I have always liked my Boppy for feeding purposes but the bigger he gets the more I appreciate the support. Bumkins Bibs are favorites around our house now too as they clean easier and are a tad larger therefore catching more spills. What will be our next adventure? Baby proofing! I’ll keep you posted as little man becomes increasing mobile and curious!
We are an on-the-go kind of family! We spend our time visiting family and friend regularly and honestly we don’t want to worry about where we are going to be when “the Boy” needs to eat. So, several years ago when we saw this travel high chair in use by a friend we knew that should we ever have children we were going to NEED one. Fast forward three years to my baby shower when the same friend who introduced us to this amazing fold-up, easy to clean and carry contraption, gave it to us as a gift. We now keep this high chair in the trunk of the car so we always have it with us! The chair folds into a nice little cube with carrying straps and takes up next to no space in the car. It is fast to assemble and it is completely possible to do so with only one hand! I also love that it is completely made of plastic and easy to clean. Another awesome feature is the tray cover; I know this seems like a minor thing but I often quickly wipe down the tray after Baby finishes eating and save the “cleaning” for later (this keeps me from monopolizing the kitchen of friends and family as well as from losing precious time with these same people). Long story short, everyone who has a child eating solids needs one of these high chairs / booster seats.
Three times since Baby was born in March, we have had unexpected family picnics. The first picnic was in a small patch of grass at a tire store while waiting on a tow truck. The next, in the grass at a truck stop while traveling to my parents’. And most recently, outside a restaurant after eating lunch while waiting for the interstate to reopen after a fuel spill. Needless to say I have been quite happy to spend this time (despite the interruption to our plans) with my husband and baby comfortable on a blanket with plenty of toys and activity to occupy our darling little boy. Most parents quickly figure out the necessity of carrying toys with them at all times; however, merely having toys wouldn’t have saved us as there would have been no where for “the boy” to sit and play. Thanks to my father’s advice when I was 16, I always have a blanket in my car for emergencies – even in the deepest heat of summer. It is this very blanket that has made our impromptu picnics a joy. I especially have found the easy fold up nature of my Nike backpack blanket to be helpful as it folds quickly, takes up little precious space in the car, and can be thrown over my shoulder by the strap for easy carrying (of both the blanket and baby)! With all the unexpectedness that life throws your way, always be prepared to slow down and enjoy even the curve balls.
Baby and I go grocery shopping together a lot since he seems to enjoy looking around at things in the store and frankly we need the food. I cook almost everything from scratch with a few shortcuts here and there so most of our trip is spent in the produce section sitting still – not an easy thing for an on the go baby. My little man still loves to play with the prop ‘n shop pillows when he begins to get bored but they can only keep him entertained so long. Enter the pacifier clip – this week I decided to loop one of his favorite toys to the clip and attach it to him while we shop (this is only possible because we use the Booginhead Paciclip that is designed for Soothies). This worked out to be a brilliant idea! He was able to play with the toy when he wanted to play, watch the world go by without having to hold the toy or throw it on the ground, and still had to hands to play with the pillows. Never once did I have to retrieve the toy from the ground or even hand it back to him! I will definitely be using our pacifier clip on every shopping trip now!
I started making my own baby food simply because I love to cook! I had no idea how much money I would end up saving us as well. I know that baby food seems like a rather inexpensive purchase and in the grand scheme of things it is; however, when I looked at the price of jarred food in comparison to how much I can make with very little fresh produce I was amazed. I have already made 24 TBSP of peaches and 36 TBSP of plums which is about 15 jars worth of food – and squash, nectarines, pears, and carrots are waiting to be pureed. The recipe I follow is very simple – steam the food, puree it, freeze it in ice cube trays, transfer cubes to freezer safe storage. Anyways, what I really wanted to share is that I had no idea that the ice cube trays I received as a baby shower gift would become so handy. It also helps that for my wedding shower I received a steaming basket, food processor, and vacuum sealer – however, none of these pieces are essential to the food making process and could easily be substituted out. Happy Food Making!
Keeping Baby out of the sun can be tricky when you are at an outdoor wedding or other event where pushing your stroller around isn’t acceptable and no matter how hard you search you just can’t find a baby sun hat to match that adorable outfit. We ran into this problem early on with our son as we had to attend an out of town outdoor wedding. As we were joking around one night about me being a “Southern Bell” for this Atlanta wedding, something was said about my having to carry a parasol to fit the part – BAM we thought our problem was solved! We immediately got on Amazon to find a suitable parasol. Wow, were there a million choices. Finally, we settled on an elegant but classic parasol that we will be able to use for all sorts of events (we have already taken it to the wedding and used it at an auction). No matter which one you choose – make sure to think about portability (ours fits into a side pocket of our diaper bag) as well as UV protection.
Grocery shopping has been a chore since our son arrived in March. I seriously couldn’t go without help for the first several trips because I never did feel quite safe with propping the car seat up on the front of the cart and if you put it in the big basket you can’t fit in the groceries. It didn’t really matter anyway since he hated his car seat. Shortly after he turned six weeks old I figured out I could take him to the grocery store by putting him in my baby carrier. This worked out well as long as I didn’t have to bend over too many times to pick stuff up off of the bottom shelf – unfortunately the deals are often higher and lower than eye level. Today I decided to go the grocery store and put my prop and shop in the front of the cart. Our son has awesome head/neck control and loves to sit so I figure why not give it a shot. Sucess was had all around. He loved being able to look around at everything and flirt with the other shoppers. When he would get bored he would play with the side pillows or kick the fabric front flap. I was able to do all of my grocery shopping quickly and easily. It was also nice to be able to talk to him about what I was picking up and have some interaction in general (something I was never good at when I would carry him). I also didn’t have to worry about him getting ahold of the germy cart since all of the pieces he could reach were covered in fabric. Anyway, I will definitely be using this EVERY time I shop now!
I have always loved being outside when the weather is nice, but WOW I had no idea how much more I would need that time now. Being outside (especially in the sunshine) helps boost my mood! I also know that it helps both baby and I produce important vitamin d. Taking daily walks has become an essential part of our day and I greatly miss them on rainy days. Sometimes the walk is around the block, sometimes a few miles, and occasionally it is only out and around our garden. No matter how long it is it always has positive effects.
Don’t forget to keep baby safe and comfortable while you are outside by using baby sunglasses and shade hats. We love BabyBanz for sunglasses.
I was never one to wear slippers around the house; however, since Baby’s arrival I have found myself wearing slippers nearly all day long! I am sure that part of the reason for this is my body is no longer a million degrees thanks to decreasing pregnancy hormones and therefore I need to keep my feet warmer. Why not wear socks you ask? Socks are great unless you want to slide them on and off or have hardwood floors – both of which matter to me! Being able to take off my slippers to curl up on the couch or sit “criss-cross applesauce” on the bed to nurse is wonderful! I also appreciate the rubber soles of my Old Friend slippers because then I do not worry about running across the wood floor when Baby starts to cry and I’m on the other side of the house. I have become so comfortable and my slippers are so durable that I even run outside to get the mail in them. The soles on these slippers might as well be the soles of shoes. The insides are also immensely comfortable! Since the lining is made of sheepskin, they have formed to my foot and they do not trap odor like other slippers. I honestly do not know what I would do without my slippers!