Ebags Ebates

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Navi and Quince are napping and the big two are entertained in my parent’s basement so I snuck away to check out the deals. If you didn’t know deal hunting is my jam and Black Friday is a holiday.

Last night we bundled up and headed to a local farm – Shady Brook Farm – for a fun night of hayride holiday lights, hot chocolate and bonfire smore’s making. As we bundled up, my sister mocked the family’s patagonia-fetish. While it was quite ridicilous, I cannot pass up the quality, their ethics and how a coat I purchased on used Ebay for Flynn in 2012 has been used my nephew and now Quince and still is perfect.

Now that I have two kiddos rocking cloth diapers, I have been eyeing up a Patagonia tote to replace my diaper bag. Actually, I am diaper bagless because the one I was using Flynn stole for school ūüôā

Today, I happened upon a great Ebags sale and while I normally refuse the site because their promos never apply to the products I want to buy, today worked out. Not only were a number of great things on sale, but Ebates (which if you never heard of read here) has 12% cashback! Sign up for Ebates Here! 

In my quick perusing of the site, here are my favorites. All the items get an additional 12% cashback.

Patagonia Down Jacket – originally $229 down to $160

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Patagonia Lightweight Travel Tote – originally $79 down to $55.30

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Fjallraven Mini Backpack – I love this bag for my kids. It is small, but holds all they need. This rarely ends up on sale and is currently full price on the site, but the 12% cashback is nice bonus.

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Herschel Wallet – Originally $39.99 down to $23.99 Dominique has this wallet and makes for a great gift for teens and dads alike.

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Fjallraven Foldsack Backpack – the blue color is on sale for $82.50 down from $110.

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Just popping back in with some No Tech Travel Activities

Edit: I wrote this a few weeks ago. It is funny because the topic for my MOPs group (that I had to miss due to kiddos) was all about self-care, which I mention below. It has been popping up all over my life lately (and probably every mom’s life) and I am feel like I am at a point to figure out what is my version of self-care and how to make time for it!

Right now in this season of my life, I have little to zero time to do things for me. And while many articles talk about the need for “self-care”, with 4 kids in 5 years time for me is¬† on hold just like this neglected/nonexistent blog has been. However, I do enjoy writing my nonsense even if no one reads it these days or it is read and then I am texted my 47+ grammatical errors/typos and so when I find a minute I always attempt to write. I always keep a running notes of things I’d like to “blog” about and have about 15 unfinished blog posts in my drafts. Heck, this one will probably end up there too. This season of life is demanding – demanding of my time, my attention and basically my full focus 24/7. Early on in motherhood I could steal 23 minutes while I plopped my one/two kids in front of the TV, however, I have found that my kids do not respond well to technology. While we still enjoy a movie or show occasionally, the daily watching of TV just does not work for us (or particularly Flynn).

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This no (or low) screen-time makes traveling difficult at times. When we make the road trip 6 hours south to my parents, I often struggle to find screen-free things to entertain the kids, especially now that they don’t always nap on the road. Sure we pull out the iPad or a movie every now and then, but we try to go without otherwise the next few days are painful. Over the past few years, I have tried multiple activities to keep the crying at bay and the ride as pleasant as possible, especially now with 4 kids 5 and under. Here are a few things that work for us!

Look and Find Books

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These books come in two levels – My First Look and Find Books which are easier for the 2-4 set and the regular Look and Find Books for slightly older kids. Nola and Flynn like both, but the My First require less help or shall I say less request for help from the kids. Quince will even flip the pages of the My First ones because the pictures are big and fun to point at. Added bonus, many of these you can find at a library and the characters are endless so you can switch it up.

 

Sticker Puzzles

IMG_3870This activity is ongoing both in the car and at home for us. The kids pull off numbered stickers and match them to a sheet with numbers to form a picture. This is better for a little older crowd (3+). Flynn and Nola received this as a gift from my awesome sister-in-law and they have been awesome quick activities. We use this in the car, but also for a quiet activity at home. I find this is a little easier than coloring books as I do not have to fetch rolling crayons every 2.4 seconds.

Audiobooks 

These another great library grab before a long car ride. We have quite a few of these and just leave the CD in the car and listen on long and short drives. My kids also have a little CD player (purchased just for these, and yes they still make them as I have found) in their room. I often use these for quiet time or just for a kid to go chill out. You can also download audiobooks to your phone, but I prefer to keep my phone “kid-free” to avoid asking to see it (ie break it). That being said I have downloaded a few with and without pictures to get my kids through longer drives or on tough days.

Catalogs 

As a kid I remember when the JC Penny’s christmas catalog would arrive. We all would hover around and circle the things we wanted. Often we would cut out our great finds and glue them to a “book”. And while JC Penny’s christmas catalog was all the praise hands, any catalog that arrived was pure joy – American Girl, Toys R Us, Eastbay, Pottery Barn, etc. Fast forward these same catalogs, bring me precious minutes of entertainment for my kids. They love to flip through, circle and at night Flynn often asked me to read the descriptions of the products. When I know I have a long drive ahead, I try to stock up on various “kid-friendly” catalogs as my kids will flip through and chill out, buying us a few extra tear-free minutes (or at least one less kid tear free!)

Snacks + Water Bottle

So I know this not original and everyone knows to pack the snacks (well everyone except me the last few trips). And really this could be a list be itself. However, I will say one thing that makes the life easier is to let the kids manage their own snacks. I usually pack a Ziploc bag full of things I don’t mind they eat and they can decide what they want and when. These two gallon bags are a complete game changer – sorry our family is obsessed with organizing toys/diaper bags/life in ziploc bags. I throw in a few pieces of fruit, a gummy snack, pepperoni sticks, pretzels, Larabar, sometimes a sandwich, cheese sticks, etc. My kids usually will go for the sweet stuff first, but since there is just one and it’s their own bag they eventually move on to more nutritious jazz without whining for more of whatever they ran out of.

 

Hello, Winter.

As many of you may know winter and I are not always happy to see each other. I tried really hard last year to embrace winter and pretty much met my goal of taking the kids outside everyday despite the temperature or amount of snow on the ground.

This past weekend¬†we celebrated Nola’s birthday a little early. Unfortunately, we had an uninvited guest named Winter show up with a bunch of snow. We also had a flood, down trees and power outages that resulted in us currently having no home. Oh life how fun you are.

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Anyway, now that winter is here on the horizon I am committed once again to ensure we are outside as much as possible. I know Flynn will be outside everyday because he attends a Waldrof school and they go outside no matter what. Just like I mentioned last year, it is crucial to dress appropriately. When my kids had on the right gear Рthey would play outside for hours Рyes hours in the cold weather (especially Flynn).

As I prepped for last winter (and for school for Flynn this year), one graphic¬†found on an adorable shops blog, Ella’s Wool, was super helpful in helping me dress my kids appropriately. This year I am so excited to work as ambassador for this awesome brand. I seriously love their stuff and am so happy they took the thinking out of dressing my kids for school and winter hikes/walks/snow playing, etc. The merino wool Layer set is not only totally functional and warm – it is also cute and classic and lasting multiple kids. Merino wool is really breathable and can really be worn throughout most of the year. It is great for the cooler fall months alone. The tubes are also a perfect second layer to throw on top of the base layer and keep everyone warm, comfy, but still adorable ūüôā

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Go check out the great products Ella’s Wool has to offer and stock up on some cozy layers.¬†Being outside is crucial for this family – and while I won’t say I love being outside in the winter, I do know that dressing warmly has made it not only possible, but enjoyable ūüôā

Also, use the coupon code¬†Staywarm16/17¬†to receive a discount¬†off your order ūüôā

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Welcome Back Neighbors

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As many of you know or have pieced together, my lovely family of five lives in a college dorm on the campus where my husband coaches. My husband likes to correct me and say we live in an apartment, as if that makes 800¬†square feet (on a generous day) feel like a mansion. To his credit¬†our “apartment” does has a lovely sign that says “Staff Apartment” outside of it,¬†but for the record our bedrooms are numbered. 121A – home of me and youngest two kids, 121B home of the big kids’ beds and more often than not my husband…sleeping on¬†peed up sheets.

When we moved into this lovely staff apartment, there were only a few short weeks before the college kids left for the summer. Once the college kids left, the building was rather quiet, the parking lot empty and the need to curb my children’s piercing screams minimized. However, we have returned from vacation to find¬†our neighbors are back. Welcome back, college friends, welcome back.

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Over the summer, we forgot about all the joys of having our neighbors here with us. In honor of their return I want to acknowledge all the joys they bring:

Fire Safety – While our neighbors were gone, we did not practice our monthly fire drills. Nope. Without them we had no one to set an alarm off at 9 PM on a Friday night. Without them I would not know how to safely exit a burning building with three sleeping children under the age of 4 by myself. Thanks, neighbors for always keeping us safe.

Street Safety РThings were getting a little loose over here in terms of street safety. During the summer, the kids had an entire empty parking lot to cruise around on their bikes and scooters. Thankfully, our friends and their 45 mph in parking lot driving skill have returned. Without them, Nola and Flynn would not know how to quickly get to the grass to avoid a head on collision. Thank you friends for reminding me that speed bumps are optional and driving skills are not fully obtained until you start considering a minivan.

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Freshmen 15 – While our neighbors were gone, the dining hall had limited hours and limited options. Now that our friends are back I can easily skip out on cooking and feed myself copious amounts of creamy soup and jam packed burritos. However, even more exciting is that our baking and pastry friends have returned. As they walk back from class with a white box full of delicious “class assignments”, I can be certain a donut or cookie or Happy Anniversary practice cake will arrive at my door. And what better way to live like the freshmen than by gaining the freshmen 15 right alongside of them.

Although, summer was quiet and peaceful and a tad bit more safe on foot – the Boones are actually very excited to have our college neighbors and friends return. We weren’t quite sure what to do with all the quiet. We do well in chaos and insanity (and by well I mean we survive with lots of whining – adult and children whining that is). I enjoy waking at 3 AM to nurse Quince to the backdrop of thunder and college kids loudly screaming for their friend who is playing in the rain. While I am fairly certain this is not our long term plan in terms of living arrangements – it makes the most sense at the moment and I want to make sure to laugh through¬†all the craziness and uniqueness that comes with raising a young family in a small dorm (or apartment depending on what Boone you ask)¬†of a college campus.

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So you live in a dorm…with three kids?

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If you follow along on instagram or facebook – you may have noticed that the sweet, window-filled playroom of our Lake Place cottage has been replaced with photos of my kids in a college cafeteria.¬†A few months ago, we said goodbye to our adorable cottage home in Lake Placid and moved down the road (and away from civilization) to live on the college campus where Dominique works. While this opportunity has been on radar since accepting the job, the move was abrupt, which seems to be how we do most things in life over here at the Boone household – abrupt and while pregnant. It was probably¬†a good thing we just packed up a truck and headed to Paul Smiths with no time to think as it did not give me much time to realize that I was leaving behind a 3 bedroom home with a garage and huge backyard for a 800 square foot apartment located smack in the middle of a college dorm. That is right my hall mates are 20 year old college kids who I share a laundry room and dorm lounge aka our “clubhouse”. This latest journey of ours – living in a college dorm apartment that is barely 800 square feet with 3 kids, 2 crazy parents and countless bikes and scooters – is full of many perks and many headaches. My 2016 goal was to be consistent in blogging as I enjoy the outlet and while I know that we are over halfway through the year and I haven’t posted in ages, I figure better late than never. As I transition to trying to blog at least weekly – I am also shifting to focus the blog on the craziness of raising three rowdy kiddos in a small apartment on a college campus. (and you know away from how my kids suck at sleeping) The “new”¬†blog will hopefully focus on¬†figuring out how maximize the little space we have, on¬†making the Overlook dorm (or apartment as my husband claims) feel less like an Extended Stay hotel and more like our family home and how we adjust to having college kids as our neighbors and my husband’s place of employment as our playground. While I do believe that big love grows in small spaces, I also know that toys everywhere creates “zen”¬†nowhere.

We Will Call This — What I Googled This Week

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I often wonder what mothers humans did before google. How did one plan a vacation? The yellow pages? This is a serious question for me. I can understand that one went to a store to buy diapers, but how did one even know the number to the Hampton Inn in Virginia Beach?

Multiple times a day I think to myself I need to google that. Actually, multiple times a day I also tell my son we will have to google that – including when he asks me why his sister says everything is Minnie. My Minnie breakfast. My minnie guitar. We don’t own minnie breakfast items or guitars, but for her it’s all Minnie something. Maybe google knows why she does this.

Did moms pre-google rely on their own mothers? A friend? I do both of those and then some, but as I lay listening to the Roger the Rabbit audiobook for the 19th time I tend to stalk google to assess my parenting and discover solutions to my latest “problems”.

If I was a consistent person who wrote blog posts – you know instead of one who just keeps an online diary¬†of random thoughts¬†that really¬†shouldn’t be shared with anyone let alone the internet – I would write a weekly post called What I googled this week. Since I probably won’t post again next week (heck I may not even finish this post) I won’t call this a series, but I will share “What I Googled this Week”.

This week my most popular google search was “How to get two toddlers/preschoolers to sleep at the same time?” I was hoping there would be a step by step guide or even better someone who tells me where to remove the batteries if turning off the toddler’s on/off switch doesn’t work. None of that exists (sadly), but I did learn this…

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One mother has her two preschool age kids wait at the bottom of the steps while she puts her under 1 year old to sleep. In other words, I learned that I jumped the gun and I need to learn (google) how to get my 3 and 2 year old to sit for 20 minutes straight without needing me. I also need steps.

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I cannot even get my kids to sit and watch a basketball game without some death-defying antics.

One mother states she does the routine, says goodnight and shuts the door. Her job is done.¬†This type of advice is more up my alley. However, after reading this I promptly went on Amazon and attempted to order locks for the light switch and closet. Then I decided I really just needed to get on Zillow and find a house with a padded room because one time I left them in there for about 10 minutes to give myself a “time out” and Flynn peed his pants, Nola peed on the floor (mind you they are potty trained) and their entire wardrobe from birth to now was thrown across the room.

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One mom said this time was precious and would soon pass.¬†She’s right. But you know what – it is not passing quickly enough and my sanity is also precious. Like really precious. I love my kids. I also love to hang up the wet clothes that have been sitting in the wash machine since yesterday.

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Baby Flynn where did you go? I miss you. I also miss those maternity pajama pants. Where did you go, pants?

One writer had a decent idea of splitting them up (either in rooms or by time) and leaving one with Dad while you tackle the other.¬†¬†This isn’t a terrible idea. I’d need a third bedroom and a new husband. Neither are feasible right now, but I might be able to work with this. Like replace husband with television or third bedroom with bring Nola back into my bed and we have a strategy? Maybe. I’ll think about this one.

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He works late. Always.

These are just a few of things I learned from google. And seriously I am just not sure how my mother did without. Google had all my parenting issued answered. It also let me know I am really no closer to solving this current “crisis” and probably also not equipped to have any more children (oops too late) because I can’t get my kids to stay safely in a room alone or better yet sit at the bottom of the steps peacefully and for the love of all things I really cannot get a child to sleep through the night.

If you came here for answers sorry I have none, but here are a few things I took away from these findings:

  • That you can buy covers for light switches on Amazon for like $12.
  • That I might¬†try some version of quiet time where after our “routine” I will let my kiddos quietly play in their room while I get something/anything/nothing done. If they leave the room/act crazy/pee on floors then quiet time is over and we will have to lay and listen to Roger the Rabbit on repeat for the next 90 minutes. I will report back (or let me rephrase try to report back) once I hash this out.
  • That improvements are being made. Flynn use to run away after I finished their last story. I was left with the decision to leave a relaxed-ish Nola to force him back into bed which required force/tears/tantrums (more me than him) and couple of profanity-laced texts to my husband about his basketball practice times. Now I play an audiobook (free through our old library card) and he will lay and listen. Sometimes it takes 90 minutes of listening to Cars 2 A Junior Novelization, but I have had nights were 30 minutes of Charlotte’s Web did the trick.

 

 

 

Winter. You aren’t my first choice, but I’m learning I can live with you.

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The weather has always had a strong hold on me. My mood, my plans, my sheer happiness existed around what weather was predicted. Checking my weather app in the winter and seeing a warm day on the horizon felt like winning the lottery. I never liked winter and basically could live without it. I do not need the Four Seasons. As a matter of fact one is fine with me. Summer.

Growing up an old neighbor used to joke that spring must be coming because the Albert children were shoeless. As soon as the temp neared 60, I was ready for bathing suits and beach visits.

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Fast forward to 2015 and my husband tells me he wants to accept a job in Lake Placid, NY. The lake part sounded the great. The average temperature calendar online, however, did not. The man who complained about Philadelphia winters wanted to move the girl who dreamed of living in Florida {despite Florida being the weirdest state alive (sorry Florida)} to one of the coldest places in America. We moved and I must admit I feared winter with each summer and fall day that passed. I was paralyzed with thinking I was trapped inside for over half the year.

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However, a few weeks ago, as I drove alone to my doctor’s appointment I realized it was really a tad bit cold in the car. It was -4 degrees. I laughed and thought how in this short time my view of weather has changed. While I check my weather app – I no longer fear the cold temperatures – I no longer plan my life around the winter temps. -4 before meant not leaving the house. Heck, not leaving bed. Basically, anything below 40 degrees demanded I be inside a place and if you dropped below 20 I wasn’t even going out of the house. However, now, we are outside nearly everyday. The kids bundle up in their winter gear and we go outside. It might be to sled. It might be to walk around. If it is dry enough,¬†it may mean to ride scooters or bikes or things I limited to warmer days before. My weather checking no longer dictates what I can do – it just reminds me what we need to wear. I joke that nearly half of Dominique’s income this year was spent securing warm gear. While this may be somewhat true,¬†I also know that this move has shaped how I respond to the weather – be that in Lake Placid, NY or Lake Placid, FL. While I use to dream of 60 degrees and sun, I now¬†am pleased with¬†40 degrees and rain. I have expanded my view of what one can do outdoors in cold weather and even more it has¬†expanded how long my kids will play outside regardless of the temperature. While it still takes us 20 minutes to get ready to go outside – we now can spend well over an hour before someone begs to come inside (or pees up their snowsuit). This move is forcing me to grow in so many ways and at times the growing pains exhaust me into a whiny mess of a person. Other times I realize how this move is helping to erode me of something I have been plagued with since childhood — letting¬†weather dictate my mood, my plans, my ability to enjoy being outside. I am embracing winter and all it has to offer (even if my growing baby belly limits my outdoor options). Wherever we land next (whenever that may be) I am hoping that my newfound ability to not only accept colder temps, but to enjoy them will carry with me and more importantly with my kids. While¬†they¬†become the annoying kids¬†who prance through southern winter in shorts and fleece vests, commenting on how warm it is while everyone else is freezing in parkas and snow boots – I also hope they will become the kids who can take any temperature and find an outdoor adventure. I¬†just hope they learn this as they¬†learn to also stop peeing up their snowsuits.

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I Fear Sleep

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When I was in high school I recall going into deep panic as I heard Late Night TV starting or looked at the clock and calculated I would only be getting 7 or so hours of sleep. I loved my sleep and often would beg my mom to let me sleep in and drop me off at school late. I needed it to function.

Fast forward to 2016 and I am writing this while in midst of a long term sleep torture brought to you by none other than my two loving children. While¬†neither one of my children has actually ever slept through the night, there were moments with Flynn, Pre-Nola, where he could be in my bed and sleep decent enough that sleep wasn’t too interrupted. He still struggled to fall asleep at night and woke up really early, but I did have a few nights in there were I strung together a few consistent hours of sleep. He also was a regular napper who took two naps a day up until shortly after Nola was born. ¬†Then came Nola and seriously I have never slept since. Flynn got booted to his own bed right before she arrived and he continued to require multiple check-ins throughout the night. Flynn was a morning bird while Nola loved late night parties. I functioned on 2 hour stretches if I was lucky and lots and lots of coffee.

Here we are now with a 3.5 year old who requires you to lay with him to fall asleep and wakes a few times each night (oh and no longer really naps), a 2 year old who currently demands I not leave her side as she sleeps and a new baby on the way who we all know will not be any better. After one bad sleeper, the little sympathy you might have had goes away and people are tired of hearing how tired you are. And you know what is funny Рyour body is tired of hearing how tired you are. As a matter of fact, I no longer feel tired. Impatient sure. Barely able to get things done. Absolutely. Tired. Nope. My body refuses to enter the sleep cycle. It refuses to be tortured.

I basically fear sleep. Tonight was no different than the rest. Nola easily went down around 7:30, but Flynn took until 9:30. In that time, I had to go tend to Nola two times. I finally head downstairs to have a moment to figure out what to do with my Day 7 sick kiddo and another one who is tired of being stuck in the house, but it is too cold to go outside, before Nola starts calling for me again. I usually lay there on my phone passing the time until the next wake-up call, but tonight I tried to fall asleep. It was pointless. I was woken up multiple times and I woke up¬†angry. Frustratedly telling Nola to lay the hell down and stop kicking me with her legs. She climbs all over me and passes out momentarily only for Flynn to stir again in the other room. And after a period of time of this back and forth – I give up. I do not want to close my eyes. It is 1:30 AM and I have been disturbed enough times to know better. I know what will happen when I do and I would prefer to sit here and wait to be called upon to come rub a back or gently push a half asleep, crying Flynn from a seated sleep position to lying down on the bed. So I sit and wait and wonder if maybe I should go get a cup of coffee or maybe some tea. I wonder if I will ever sleep again. I google what will happen if this continues. I search through¬†solutions that I have read a hundred times before and have never successfully have been able to implement either because my kids didn’t respond the way they were suppose to or because I run a one man show most nights and Ferber is no match for my two, mobile, no longer in crib kids and my small house. According to my phone app that I check every now and then to see how pregnant I am, I have 17 weeks before my spaghetti squash of a baby arrives. 17 weeks and a few days to figure out how the hell I am going to do this without ending up in a mental institution. But in reality, I really just need to figure out what the hell I am going to do tomorrow to properly care for and entertain my children alone all day until the next bedtime torture routine begins. Better yet I need to figure out how to make the coffee walk itself up to me right now because we all know if I leave Nola’s side she will stand up and scream for me.

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And you Thought 1 on 1 Time Was Just Something You Saw on The Bachelor

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 Flynn B       3                                              Professional Basketball Reenactor                      Lake Placid, NY

 

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Nola B        2                                                             Diva                                                                           Lake Placid, NY

 

Back when I was young, fun and much smaller dress size I had this grand idea to apply for the Bachelor. No, I didn’t really think I would find love, but I did think I’d get a cool vacation. One day as I headed¬†home from teaching in the Bronx, they called me asking me to attend some interview. I never went.

Luckily, I dodged that bullet and the embarrassment (and nice tan) it would have brought upon my twenty something life.

Fast forward a few pounds¬†years and I realize I am finally getting that Bachelor experience. No,¬†I am not sitting around a huge mansion drinking Margherita’s poolside waiting for my on camera interview with 20 other girls dating the same man. No, I just have the extreme privilege of being the bachelorette to my children with my children constantly¬†battling it out for my 1 on 1 time.

I am not sure if it is the traveling, the holidays, the very clear large stomach that indicates a baby to my¬†very “in tune” children or perhaps the fact that I have been able to pass some parenting duties off on Dominique since he is home the past few days, but basically my day is like Episode 1 of the Bachelor with my children climbing all over me for constant attention and affection….all without the ability to consume copious amounts of alcohol or wear fancy gowns.

My day starts with both kids fighting over who gets to sit next on top of me and after some elbowing, blankie throwing and a few bruised ribs one kid is off crying in the corner about he/she is not getting any alone time and how the fellow contestant keeps butting in on their conversations. Then it moves to errand running with one kid begging to come and more importantly to not make this a group date. If said date does happen to be a group date – there is alway the more aggressive kid asking to be carried or make some sort of scene to grab my attention. If a one on one date is received, upon returning from our romantic date to the grocery store – there is always another kid sitting around feeling sorry for themselves and needing me to reassure them they I still want them to be here and to just trust the process and please don’t run back to your farm/winery/bar/fake job.

We move throughout our day with some funny moments and the contestants (Flynn and Nola) even seem to get along for part of the day – especially while I am out of sight¬†getting massages¬†folding laundry. Then night time hits and BAM! this 2 on 1 date gets really crowded. The contestants are all showered and dolled up in their fanciest of pajamas and do not want to share their prized mother. Nope. In fact, one will even talk about how annoying the other is and that they might not be ready to commit to a night of sleep. “Nola doesn’t want to sleep. She wants to be downstairs”. Oh really, because a few minutes ago she told me you that you are still not over your ex-bedroom and still like to sleep in the other room on the trundle bed. Once we all settle into our nightly snuggle, the two of them basically dance around trying to be as close as possible to me with the famous line whines “may I interrupt for a minute” replaced with “she’s touching me” and “that’s my spot”.

Once the contestants are safe in bed, I can head to my confessional¬† group text and talk about each contestant and who is winning me over and who may not be here for the right reasons. I share how right now I am just so confused because I have connections to both of them. However, the producers really know how to shake things up and come May are¬†going to really throw these two for a loop when a new guy is added and demands a whole ton of the prize Bachelorette’s attention! Tune in to see who makes it another week, who gets¬†kicked out of the mansion Queen size bed and who ends up with their own¬†spin-off show.

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5 Reasons Potty Trained Kids Aren’t All They Are Cracked Up to Be

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I have written before about my adventures with Flynn potty training. I wouldn’t even call it potty training, but more Flynn deciding to be done with diapers with a brief¬†“trained” period followed by a few more months in the cloth diapers ended by a Flynn proclamation that diapers don’t cut it for him anymore give me some undies. When all was said and done he was around 2.5 years old.

Right at Nola’s 2nd birthday – she decided she wanted to wear underwear full time as well. Nola has been using the potty since 1. No joke the girl would use the¬†potty¬†for fun (or part of her night time entertainment routine) right after she learned to walk. Finally at two – she wanted underwear and to not wear diapers so we rolled with it.¬†All was great at first – no accidents, but you did have to occasionally be like hey Nola why don’t you use the potty. Fast forward a month and just like Flynn, Nola is kind of over using the potty. And I am kind of over her not being in diapers. I am not going to go back to the diapers (just yet anyway), but I have compiled a list of 5 reasons I wish my kids stayed in diapers FOREVER. Or at least until they totally get the whole using the bathroom thing down pat.

  1. Your kid will forgot to pee on the potty¬†at the worst times. Things will be going along great. No accidents, no need to constantly remind your kid “hey why don’t you use the bathroom”. You get cocky. You say to your husband wow this having your kid learn to use the potty business is really not hard. Then your kid will pee all over you at public place with change of clothes needed for both of you, but not a spare item around.
  2. Your kid will remember to pee on the potty at the worst times. Like six times at bedtime. And 30 minutes after falling asleep and at 5:34 AM. Don’t worry though because by 6:05 AM they will have forgotten that they are no longer wearing diapers and will pee their pants as you attempt to pour your second cup of coffee, but damn at 5:30 they will surely remember.
  3. Long car rides just became that much longer.¬†Pre-kids you type¬†your long distance travel plans into Mapquest and be like bah 5 hrs and 39 minutes I can totally do that in less hours. Post kids you are like “Lord, please let’s try do this in 6.5 hours.” Potty trained kids you are like God, please let me arrive there without a visit to the Hampton Inn. Seriously, Nola in diapers and I made the trip home in less than 6 hours. Nola not in diapers it took 8+ hours ¬†and a few scenic bathroom breaks on the side of I-87.
  4. Cleaning a kid’s potty is gross. Like give me a dirty cloth diaper any day. I am sure once my kids graduate to using a real human toilet this “headache” will go away, but it seriously grosses me out cleaning out my kids potty seat. Every time I am wiping that thing with a Clorox wipe I am thinking to myself there has got to be Shark Tank idea here. Then I realize it is called the toddler size ring on top of the adult toilet seat, but my kids are seriously not a fan of that. Flynn flat out refuses to use that thing and Nola flat out refuses to do anything different than Flynn. So bring on the bleach and no sorry vinegar you won’t cut it.
  5. Public bathrooms are a hassle. Back in the day I could take my sweet diapered child to a cleanish area and change their diaper. Hello, Nordstrom’s mothers’ room. Now I play the game of which stall is the cleanest, can we all fit inside, please stop trying to flush that thing with your hands, No you cannot both pee at the same time, Nola please do not climb under that door there is another person in there, Flynn just please pee standing up, No, Nola you cannot pee standing up. ¬†Why you ask? I do not know why take it up with God. And while you are talking to him, ask him about his reasoning behind the human bladder.