Saturday, 13 December 2014
The notorious wall of bottles at the baby store. It haunts every soon to be new mom and seasoned moms alike.
Every color, shape, size imaginable litters the walls. They all have different tricks and gadgets to reduce colic. It’s beyond overwhelming to pick the right one for you and your baby.
That’s all great and dandy if you are having one baby but twins is an entirely different ball game. With twins it boils down to what is the best quality bottle with the least amount of pieces.
The Joovy Boob was the best bottle for us. When the twins were infants, eating every 2.5 hours, we went through 10 bottles a day! The last thing I wanted to do before going to bed was clean multiple pieces! They add up! We loved that the Boob only had 3 pieces beside the bottle. All of which are super easy to clean!
The Joovy Boob is on top of being easy to clean, a great bottle.
The nipple is very durable. At first, I was trying to do everything perfect according to the books but then I came to my senses and used the dreaded DISHWASHER. The nipples withstood a year of daily washing.
The bottle shape itself is the best on the market. It is very easy to hold and to hold comfortably with one hand.
Again, a plus with twins due to the fact that you will always be holding two bottles at once. You need a bottle that you can easily grip. What’s also nice about the shape is that when the babies are ready, it’s easier for them to hold as well. Best day ever when they hold their own bottles. You can also add the handles to the bottle to help with that transition.
All around it’s another smart designed product with the parents of twins in mind.
Elizabeth, mom to twins, Carson and Ellie (aren’t they adorable?!)
Thursday, 20 November 2014
We’ve got some ‘jingle’ for your loved ones this holiday season. Here are the hottest and hippest gift ideas from Joovy, guaranteed to bring holiday smiles. With the help of Santa himself, we’ve curated a list that includes something for everyone on your list. And, in the event you need personal shopping recommendations, our elves are eager to help at 877-456-5049. Give us a call!
We all have someone on our list who has everything. No worries, we’ve got you covered this season! For this well equipped person, consider the Joovy MoonRoom. It’s a playard from out of this world! Fun, geometric design with loads of space, this playard gives a new dimension to the old standby. Made of high quality materials, the MoonRoom offers FUN & FUNCTIONALITY!
Santa’s tip: Dads have been known to love this far-out piece of baby gear!
MoonRoom – Jade
MoonRoom – Blueberry
Baby’s first vehicle should memorable and Santa suggests a tricycle that grows with your child. The Joovy Tricycoo is top of his list for first wheel presents this holiday season! The Tricycoo is simple and perfect for very young babies. Your child does not need to steer, pedal or balance on their own in the beginning. They simply enjoy the fun and independence of their first tricycle while you guide them with the parent push handle (removable). When engaged, the parent push handle overrides the steering on the Tricycoo. The surround arms help them learn to balance and give you confidence that they won’t fall out. The pedals can be easily ‘turned off’ until they are ready to ‘kid power’ the Tricycoo on their own. As they gain confidence, the Tricycoo surround arms and parent handle can be removed for independent tricycling fun!
Santa’s tip: Get yours early. They sold out last year!
Tricycoo – Pink & Greenie
Tricycoo – Orangie
Get your little one trailblazing in style. The Joovy Bicycoo balance bike gives them the confidence to take the first step in cycling. Lightweight aluminum frame is easy to control, pneumatic tires offer the smoothest ride and the internal drum brake teaches them how real gear works. What’s even cooler about the Bicycoo? It looks like a real bike!
Santa’s tip: Don’t forget the Noodle (helmet) below. Start with teaching safety early and create good habits for life!
Bicycoo Balance Bike – Red
Bicycoo BMX Balance Bike – Greenie
Protect that little noggin with the Joovy Noodle! Introduce safety early and create good habits from day one. The Noodle comes in six bold colors, has 14 air vents, integrated bug mesh and is designed for babies heads measuring 18.5″ – 20.5″. Extended visor for maximum protection, nylon straps, pinch guard chin strap, and an adjustable fit dial. It is a great looking helmet and we think kids will love being ‘safe’ while cycling and doing other outdoor activities. Meets CPSC Standards.
Santa’s tip: Give a practical gift to each child on your list!
Noodle – Red
For the growing family, the Caboose VaryLight is the ideal gift. This fantastic and functional stroller grows from a single to full size double in seconds with it’s easy to expand, telescopic frame. This Caboose will accept infant car seats (car seat adapters sold separately) in the front or rear of the stroller for strolling with infants. The family that strolls with the Caboose VaryLight will be ready for all ages of little riders!
Santa’s tip: This stroller is the solution for families with more than one child! Check out the new graphite frames and my personal favorite, red!
with Infant Car Seat – rear
with Infant Car Seat (front seat removed)
Share Foocot fun for every kid in the house this holiday season! This practical sleeping cot for kidsÂ comes with a 100% cotton sheet and has a pocket for sleepover necessities like favorite Christmas story or travel companion. Perfect for travel, trips to Disney and grandma’s house, the Foocot also has it’s own travel bag. This great gift holds a child up to 75 pounds and comes in four hot colors.
Santa’s tip: Your kids will think the Foocot is fun while you know it’s the perfect sleep solution, especially while traveling!
The sleakest, most luxurious stroller to hit the market in 2014 is the Joovy TooQool. This double stroller is packed with features and high-end detailing. What most parents love about the TooQool is that it comes equipped with both seats! It has a small footprint that offers a super smooth and effortless ride! The upper seat on the TooQool is convertible (can face front or towards the rear). Joovy also has infant car seat adapters that are compatible with the Graco Click Connect, Chicco Key Fit, Britax/BOB B-Safe, and Maxi-Cosi/Cybex Aton car seats. The TooQool is available in 10 gorgeous colors and two frame finishes: graphite and silver.
Santa’s tip: The TooQool says ‘classy parents’ all the way!
TooQool Graphite – Purpleness
TooQool Silver – Apple
The Qool is the single version of the TooQool with the same attention to detail. Urban strolling has never been so Qool with this new luxurious stroller from Joovy! The Qool has dreamy features and exceptional functionality designed to make your strolling experience the absolute best. Offering style in its innovation, high-end detailing from top to bottom, and a compact aluminum frame for a state-of-the-art experience in strolling. The Qool seat reclines to 3 comfy positions as well as converts easily to forward or rear facing. Car seat adapters allow for convenient strolling while using an infant car seat with itty-bitty babies. Premium handle and bumper bars are covered with hand-stitched leatherette and the handlebar adjusts to three heights. Joovy is known for it’s oversized canopies which offer supreme coverage and the Qool delivers here. Zippered canopy extensions offer full coverage for protection of your little one. Seats have adjustable foot rest. Boasting two beautiful frame finishes and 10 fashion colors, there is a Qool to fit your personality. What’s more Qool? This awesome stroller weighs in at 21.5 pounds and will carry a child up to 55 pounds. Pretty Qool, for sure!
Santa’s tip: Consider the Qool/TooQool ride-on board for that toddler who still needs to hitch a ride on occasion.
Qool Silver – Jade
Qool Graphite – Hot Pink
Qool with Ride-On Board
The Spoon walker has a clean, contemporary design and is just the thing for the baby on your list. This crossover walker – highchair is perfect for the little one’s first steps. The tray is large, with a dishwasher safe insert, and the height is adjustable to 3 positions. An ultra-wide base gives a wonderful foundation for scooting and exploring independently. The Spoon has a dishwasher safe tray insert makes clean-up easy.
Santa’s tip: Joovy just introduced my favorite ‘red’ Spoon. This is on my giving list for grand babies!
Need something unique for that person who just has their own, je ne sais quoi? Consider the TooFold. This highly engineered stroller will have heads turning as you transform the TooFold from a single to double stroller in seconds. This all-terrain-stroller, with built in stroller board, converts as needed to keep your little ones content and you on the move. Take this puppy on a trail or to the mall. It is guaranteed to turn heads.
Santa’s tip: This is for the seriously active family. Get ready for the New Year, New You with this stroller that will have you exploring!
TooFold – Lemontree
TooFold – Red With Second Seat Attached (sold separately)
Looking for longevity in a gift? For the efficient and thoughtful parent, the HiLo is calling their name. Modern, contemporary and most importantly, easy to clean, this convertible high chair will grow with your child. Age graded from 6 months to 6 years, the HiLo converts to a toddler seat after use as a high chair and saves from having to purchase another chair as your child grows. Fun and functional!
Santa’s tip: The elves favorite seat! You will be pleased with this purchase!
For the family who travels this take-along high chair has supreme good looks and is easy to clean. The Hook is made of a comfortable leatherette and fits to most tabletops. The Hook comes with a travel bag, folds up compactly and is convenient for travel or eating out. Why not?
Santa’s tip: This is the perfect holiday gift for grandparents to give their globetrotting grand babies.
Hook – Orangie
The Boob Gift Set is the ultimate feeding gift set for the expectant parents on your list. This amazing bottle system is ideal for breastfed babies because of the unique nipple that promotes proper latching and allows easy transitions between bottle and breast. Also important, the Boob is easy to clean, easy to reassemble and just gorgeous by design. The Clean Flow Vent offers excellent venting so baby is sure to take in milk or formula, not air. This gorgeous set contains 23 essentials, including breast pump adapters (works with major brands) so mom can pump directly into the Boob!
Santa’s tip: The Boob Baby Bottle Gift Set will add to an effortless feeding experience!
PPSU Gift Set – 23 essential feeding products
Is there anything sweeter than your daughter or son’s first babydoll? Pretend play is the best way to encourage nurturing and the Toy Caboose will add to the overall experience. Larger in scale, the Toy Caboose is perfect for 18″ dolls such as the American Girl dolls. Kids love this attractive, high-quality replica of the popular Joovy Caboose Stand-On Tandem stroller. The clever features of the Toy Caboose allow your child to secure and transport two or three cherished toy friends at once, for hours of role-playing fun. And with our toy car seat & attachment, the Joovy Toy Caboose creates a travel system for more playtime fun!
Santa’s tip: The elves may think this is for their babies because it’s so realistic! Hurry! These go f-a-s-t!
The Toy Infant Car Seatis not only a fun toy, it helps children understand the importance of good passenger safety. Children learn to imitate the role of a caring and responsible parent as they safely secure a favorite doll or stuffed toy into the doll car seat which is LATCH compliant and has been crashed tested, so it’s safe for the car. The Toy Infant Car Seat comes in pink and blue.
Santa’s tip: Parents find that their child is more cooperative about using their own car seat as a result!
The Toy Infant Car Seat creates a travel system with the Toy Caboose
To round out the pretend play toys, Joovy has the Toy Room² Playard that is the perfect place for laying little one’s dolls and furry friends down for nap. Another great teaching tool, the Toy Room² helps children understand that even stuffed friends need downtime to rejuvenate and refresh!
Santa’s tip: The Elf on the Shelf may need a Toy Room² after this holiday season!
Friday, 7 November 2014
Carving time out for yourself is crucial when you have children. The other day I snuck in a matinee with a group of friends. Part of me felt guilty going to a movie while my children were at school but that quickly faded as the lights went down and my feet went up in the cushy recliner chair. We were seeing Gone Girl. I was very excited. I had read the book and couldnâ€™t wait to see what they had done with the movie. I was pleasantly surprised. Then I started thinking about my poor friends that didn’t read the book and did not know what they were in for wow. Its definitely a movie where you need to be in the right frame of mind when you sit down. The movie is a work of fiction but as I sat there I thought about how many people can probably relate at some level. Two young people meet and fall in love. They get married. Recession hits. They lose their jobs. Parent gets sick. They move home to care for parent. Parent ends up dying. Fast forward five years and they cannot stand each other. I will leave it here as not to spoil it for those who have not seen it.
I should probably clarify that I am happily married and not a psycho. Weve been married almost 13 years and we’ve been through a lot. We have struggled through custody battles, the birth of three children, the recession, job loss, aging parents, and starting a new company to name a few. Life is tough. Marriage is tough. We are not living in a bubble. It is important to find a way to continue to not only love each other but actually LIKE each other. We always joke that we used to be so much fun, what happened? Life happened. Its happening. In Gone Girl, the husband isn’t a bad guy and she isn’t awful in the beginning. Life just happens. Struggles will continue to present themselves. The secret is to keep remembering why you liked each other in the first place. Its not always easy. But there is always someone out there with a situation worse than your situation. Focus on the positive and work through the other stuff.
So thank you Gillian Flynn for yet another reminder that I love AND like my husband.
Friday, 31 October 2014
I hope you and your family enjoy these jokes as much as we did!
Why was the jack-o-lantern afraid to cross the road?
It had no guts.
What do witches put on their hair?
Where do baby ghosts go during the day?
Why did the witches cancel their baseball game?
They couldn’t find their bats.
How do you make a skeleton laugh?
Tickle its funny bone.
Friday, 24 October 2014
There is a newer Halloween tradition called Halloween Boo or Booing. It is usually done in your neighborhood. It is similar in nature to the tradition of Secret Santa at Christmastime. It involves leaving a treat and a note saying, â€œYouâ€™ve Been Booâ€™dâ€ on a doorstep, ringing the doorbell, then running and hiding as fast as you can. When our family got booâ€™d last year I thought, â€œOh great, another thing I have to do.â€ Well, last year, I was a party pooper and did not participate. Things changed this year. After we were booâ€™d, the kids were so excited and wanted to spread Halloween cheer, so we did. And I have to say it was the most Iâ€™ve laughed in a long time. The kids sat down and picked four families that were a little outside of their inner circle of friends. They wanted it to spread through the entire neighborhood. They felt if they picked their friends, it would just keep circling. Â The kids took the booing very seriously. Â They huddled before we began Operation Boo. Â They were like stealth military operatives going through the neighborhood. Â I would stay a house or two away and they would sneak up, leave the treat, ring the doorbell and RUN!Â Â They had dogs barking at them, unhappy babysitters and a few tumbles into the bushes.Â Â All and all it was good, clean fun. If you want to start your own Halloween Boo, just follow these steps:
- Pick about 4 families.
- Pick a treat to deliver. It could be candy, cookies, pumpkin breadâ€¦get creative. Our family chose a box of BooBerry cereal.
- Download or create a Boo gram. There are thousands to chose from online.
- Deliver, ring doorbell and RUN!
Please like this post if you have ever been BOOâ€™D!
Friday, 3 October 2014
Get ready moms! I am going to let you in on my new favorite websiteâ€¦gatheredtable.com. I want to take you back a month to where I talked about the importance of family dinners. I was trying to take some pressure off myself by stressing the importance of sitting down together, not making a gourmet meal from scratch. Gatheredtable.com is a website that helps you provide both!Â Â There are countless websites out there that put together menu plans but in my opinion, this is the cream of the crop. It allows you to create a profile with not only how many people you are cooking for but also how many adults and how many children. It also lets you input food allergies, food aversions, and gives you the ability to rate meal options on a scale of how much you like them.
Iâ€™ve been using the website for about three weeks now and have made some great new recipes. These recipes were not only delicious but also easy to make. Our dinners have included Bolognese sauce with pasta, teriyaki fried rice, minestrone soup, baked ziti with sausage to name a few.Â Â The website can pair all main courses with a carb side, a veggie side and a dessert.Â Â You get a weekly menu that you can edit and the best part is the shopping list it comes with. Grocery listâ€¦check!
This site also allows you to add your familyâ€™s favorite recipes. You can manually add them or use my favorite feature, the web clipper. This web clipper allows you to â€œclipâ€ your recipes from a website and then it dumps them into your menu preferences. This is an absolute must do to make sure that you get the most out of the site.
My life is simpler because I always know what is for dinner. I am much more relaxed at dinnertime. The shopping list is set or you may add the rest of your shopping needs to it. This makes visits to the grocery store less frequent and Iâ€™ve also saved money by not buying extras.
Iâ€™ve actually been setting the table and weâ€™ve been sitting down to real conversations. After we take turns sharing our daily highs and lows, the conversation gets interesting. Bob brought up the subject of hobos the other night. Eva said that he should call them homeless because hobo was not a nice word. Then she added that he didnâ€™t even know what a hobo was. Bob quickly responded with a yes he did, â€œItâ€™s a man without a wife!â€
Please join gatheredtable.com right now. Itâ€™s free and it takes less than 2 minutes to get started. You will be amazed how much stress is lifted when you know whatâ€™s for dinner.
Friday, 26 September 2014
We were in the first full week of school. I was excited to begin my organizing project.Â Â Just when I was about to start, I received a phone call from the school that my 5th grader was sick and needed to come home.Â Â I remembered that she told me she didnâ€™t feel well the night before and then again the next morning so I dropped everything and went to pick her up. As soon as she got into my car, she seemed a little better. She said it was a stomachache and a headache. That was understandable. Weâ€™ve had abnormally warm and humid weather and our schedules are back in full school time swing. I took her home to rest, not thinking much more about it.
When bedtime came, I sat down on her bed for a goodnight kiss and she just unloaded. The tears began to flow and she told me she wanted to be homeschooled.Â Â She loves her teacher and is excited for everything she will learn this year but doesnâ€™t like recess and lunch. She said that she doesnâ€™t like them so much that she gets a stomachache when she even thinks about it. She said that nobody was being mean to her but she just didnâ€™t fit in. This broke my heart because she is a happy, kind and caring girl. She is the daughter who wakes up happy and always sees the good in people and situations.
Once we ruled out homeschooling as an option (no way this mama could do that) we began to come up with ideas on how to handle lunch and recess. She is much like me. She is shy, quiet (until she gets to know you), and a rule follower. We talked about learning a new joke to share with friends. We talked about volunteering for lunch duty with the kindergarten class. We talked about practicing piano in the music room. We talked about taking a soccer ball to school to practice juggling. After our conservation, she felt better but STILL wanted me to talk to her teacher about getting off the playground during lunch and recess. So I made the appointment.
A few days later, she came home and told me to cancel the appointment. She had worked out the problem on her own. She decided to just walk up to her peers and start a conversation. She put herself out there. Everyone was kind. She was happy. And I was relieved.
Kids need to learn how to make friends. We are a social society. We did all the â€œrightâ€ things to socialize our daughter. We joined a playgroup when she was 6 months old, she did three years of preschool, and she played sports in our community programs. How do you give them confidence to make friends? When they are miserable at school, how far do you let it go before you get involved? When do you contact the teacher?
Please share your thoughts and stories.
Friday, 19 September 2014
Itâ€™s been a little over a year since we struggled with the decision. Should we start our son in kindergarten at 5 years old or wait until he is 6 years old? We decided to wait. There were many factors and questions that went into the debate:
- Will he be bored in preschool?
- Will he become a bully on the preschool playground?
- How will he feel if some of his friends start kindergarten before he does?
- Wouldnâ€™t our lives be so much simpler with all three kids at one school?
We spoke with academic professionals and they said he would be fine either way. We spoke with friends that had chosen to enroll their children at 5 years old and 100% of the people we spoke with said they would do it differently. In the end, we realized that you couldnâ€™t get that year back. Bob and I had one last great year of slow mornings and lazy afternoons. These times were greatly appreciated by both of us since he is the youngest in the family. It was nice to have this special time together.
Iâ€™ve been volunteering in Bobâ€™s art class at school this year and can really see the benefits of the extra year. He is neither ahead nor behind academically but appears to be somewhere in the middle. Many of the strengths I see from the extra year of preschool are social. He makes friends easily, he has no separation anxiety, he is kind and considerate with his peers and he raises his hand to participate.
The Wall Street Journal recently published an essay entitled â€œShould Children Be Held Back From Starting Kindergarten,â€
that brings up some interesting points. They call what we did academic redshirting. â€œRedshirtingâ€ is a term associated with holding kids back for sports. We did not â€œredshirtâ€ our son. We gave him one extra year to have more time with the family and grow socially. After reading the article, we still stand with confidence in our decision. After all, each child is different and a parent should do what is best for its child. This is not a one size fits all world.
At what age did your son or daughter start kindergarten? Â Did you see a difference either academically or socially? Â Please share your story.
Friday, 12 September 2014
We recently attended a memorial service for a friend and neighbor that passed away in a tragic accident in July.Â Â He left his wife and two children way to soon. There is no way to understand why things like this happen. It is difficult for adults to understand so how can we explain this to our children?
The memorial service was a stellar tribute to a great family man. He was a very successful businessman among many other things but the common theme was that his family came first. Many of his friends and family stood up to speak about him but the most moving was his 9-year-old daughter.Â Â She spoke with poise, elegance and a bit of humor. As we sat there and wiped the tears from our eyes, I realized that she was not crying. She was strong. She was resilient. I know that she misses her Dad more than words can express. I am certain there will be times when she is overcome with sadness but the strength of character that her father and mother are instilling in her are evident. She will not only survive but also thrive.
As a family, we have been inspired to spend more time together, we hug and kiss more, we say â€I love youâ€ more. Â My message to you today is to go home and hug your husband, your wife, and your children. Family isÂ really all that is important.
Saturday, 6 September 2014
Have you ever seen your child doubled over with laughter watching someone else and wondered why you can’t get him to produce the same belly laugh at home? Me too. I am lucky enough to live in the DC area, which one of the country’s best children’s entertainers, The Great Zucchini, calls home. If you haven’t heard of him yet look out for an upcoming show on FX about him called The Great Zucchini.
There are several ways to add laughter into your home that are so easy and don’t take long. Also, when a child is sad, or is having a temper tantrum, humor can make him smile. After too many times watching The Great Zucchini, also known as Eric Knaus, make my children laugh in a way I never could I sat down with him to get some tips. Here are some of my favorites!
Children usually understand when something isn’t right and they love telling you about it. They can feel empowered by being able to communicate that they know something isn’t quite the way it should be.
There are many ways to do this. When Eric stands in front of a child at his show and pretends not to be able to find them children often crack up and say I’m right here!
Pretend to lose kids again and again and they love it. This can be done in various ways at home. For example, at the kitchen table wait for Max to sit down then say, we can’t start until Max sits down and walk around kitchen looking for him.
Another way to empower children to let you know something is wrong is to do a running gag of pretending to pour different juices into cereal instead of milk. Children will laugh and correct you at the same time. Another take on this idea is that when the phone rings, pick up a random object (shoe, spoon, etc.) and say hello. Children will laugh, and tell you that’s not the phone!
A great trick to getting children to laugh is a take on hide-and-seek. Pretend to do a magic trick to get an object to disappear, hide the object somewhere easily discoverable such as behind your back or under your shirt, and let your child discover it. After your child finds the object, pretend to be flustered, and try it again.
When playing hide and go seek, lift up ridiculous object to hide behind, like chair or a piece of paper. Your child will love finding you and think you’re not a very good hider.
Pretending you do not know where common items go or where they can be found will get kids laughing as well. Put milk back in cabinet and let kids tell you where it goes. Pretend that you can’t find a fork to use to eat, and pick up different items to use instead such as your phone or the remote. You can also pretend to fall asleep randomly in the house.
Try these tricks at home and you will quickly become your child’s new favorite entertainer!