DIY Christmas Ornaments

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Having kids is exhausting and by the end of the day you may need a large glass of wine. No judgement here if that one large glass turns into two large glasses.

And what’s better than drinking wine? Knowing that the more you drink the more wine corks you’ll have to make Christmas Ornaments with!  While many would look at the wine cork as trash you can look at it and see sparkly decorations.

This DIY ornament is a great way to spend a cold winter afternoon with the family. Besides being a fun family activity you are also teaching your kids the importance of upcycling and reusing rather than throwing everything in the garbage.

Continue reading DIY Christmas Ornaments

Preparing Yourself For a Long Car Trip and Vacation With a Small Child

Let’s face it… after you have a kid vacations are just not the same. For the better or for the worse taking a kid on vacation changes the entire trip from the get go.

The car ride to a destination and the actual vacation with a young child can be a relaxing, refreshing experience or it can be an aggravating, stressful blur. The best way to ensure a smooth, enjoyable car ride and vacation is to be prepared, cross your fingers, and hope for a pleasant child that will chill and let you enjoy yourself.

We recently made the 5-hour drive to Switzerland for a quick vacation. It was a last-minute trip with one night to pack everything we would need for a three-day stay and a combined ten hours of driving with a 14-month-old and a dog.  I didn’t have my usual 3 to 4 days to start preparing everything so I was more stressed than usual. This isn’t our first rodeo though and with some experience I have learned some of the best ways to have the most enjoyable, relaxing trip you can have with a young child.

Tips For Taking a Car Trip and Vacation With a Small Child

 

Try to start getting ready a couple of days before the trip with lists…then use the lists.

Using lists helps to ensure nothing will be forgotten. (An added plus to having a list is getting to check stuff off the list.)  What toys or stuffed animal does your baby need? What food and snacks will she need?  Bottle cleaner… dish soap…..  Put it all on the list and it hopefully won’t be forgotten.

Organize the car so anything you need is easy to access.

Food pouches, snacks, and baby toys should be easily reached. Having them behind the driver’s seat makes it easy for the passenger to reach without having to unbuckle the seatbelt and hear that annoying f-ing beeping sound that can really drive someone crazy. The beeping on top of struggling to get a food pouch from a weird part of the car, personally, makes me snap and that is unenjoyable for everyone.

Pack a small cooler with milk of choice.

Since I’m not a fan of breastfeeding and think breastfeeding a kid over the age of one is just freaking weird my 14-month-old is drinking organic cow milk. I’ve done a lot of research on the milk I feed my daughter and ensure that the cow or cows it comes from haven’t been pumped full of hormones and antibiotics. I like to pack my own milk to be safe. I’m also not risking a change in milk upsetting her stomach causing her not to sleep and causing me to be tired, grumpy and an all around bitch.

Bring a Pack n’ Play and if there isn’t room for a Pack n’ Play bring a sheet and blankets.

Hotels often charge for the use of their Pack n’ Play, so save some money and bring one from home. I’m super uncomfortable with the thought of how many toddlers and babies have pissed or thrown up on the hotel’s Pack n’ Play and how well it got disinfected.  Can’t bring your own?  Sheets from home are easy to pack, take up a small amount of room, and are clean…usually.

Bring a small fan or sound machine.

One of the worst parts about vacationing with a toddler is having to be super quite at bedtime. Unless you get two hotel rooms you’re gonna be stuck with a sleeping baby and having to tiptoe around the room at 8pm. Any background noise, like a fan or sound machine, might help her sleep and you to be able to watch some TV or do other fun adult activities… quietly.

iPad.

I’m not one of those ‘no screen time’ moms, but even if you are for the sake of your trip bring an iPad with kid games and shows. Throw Baby Einstein (or another educational show) on, give your kid a Ritz Cracker and maybe you’ll have enough time to enjoy a long lunch and a few glasses of wine. It’s vacation… you NEED it.

Over pack

The one positive to a car trip is that you aren’t charged for how many bags you have. One bag or five bags it doesn’t make a difference. When you are going to a country like Switzerland where everything is WAY overpriced it’s nice to not have to go buy diapers that cost 2-3 times more than they do in Germany or America.

Also, weather is pretty unpredictable so pack for the cold, pack for the warm, make sure you won’t be stuck unprepared for what nature can throw at you. Pack anything you might need… bags are free!

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In the end, don’t over stress about all the shit you need to pack and what might be forgotten, most places you visit have a place to buy what you need.

It’s vacation. Have some wine and chill as much as your crazy baby will let you.

Need It! Grass… The Drying Kind

There is a ton of shit that experts insist you “need” when you have a baby. From wipe warmers to glass bottles, the list goes on and on… some of it’s needed, some of it’s a complete waste of money. I received this Grass Drying Rack at a baby shower and thought it was a bit of an eyesore, but turns out it’s amazing!

  • I don’t know why bottles dry so much quicker on the grass than any other drying mechanism, but they do!
  • The flexible grass blades make for the perfect wine glass dryer, too. The blades provide more stability than just sitting it on the counter top.
  • It also comes with different accessories that help with drying. They aren’t absolutely needed, but do help with the small parts of a bottle.
  • The grass comes in a few shapes and sizes and is easy to clean.

Features and Details  boon grass countertop drying rack

  • Low-profile drying rack looks great in any kitchen
  • Perfect for drying items of all shapes and sizes
  • Easily holds items upright for drying while excess water collects in bottom tray
  • Two-piece, easy-to-clean design
  • BPA-free, Phthalate-free and PVC-free

9 Things I Don’t Feel Guilty Spending Money On

Kids are expensive little boogers. From food and formula, to clothing, to healthcare, keeping them alive and healthy puts a dent in the bank and parents are never done. My parents and in-laws are still buying us stuff and not getting paid back. Once you have a kid they have you for life and they just keep sucking you dry. (The only thing my kid didn’t and future kids won’t suck dry is my milk bags, cause I’m not into that.)  Most parents do so much for their kids…literally keep them alive everyday. (I couldn’t keep my Sim baby alive worth shit, so I know keeping an actual baby alive everyday means I am winning as a parent.)

Because I keep my baby alive and healthy everyday, spend most of my time caring for her rather than doing fun hobbies or watching my shows on TV, and the fact that I know how much she really is cramping my style there are some things that I just refuse to feel guilty for spending our hard-earned money on.

9 Things I Don’t Feel Guilty Spending Money On

  1. Wine: I love wine, I love it even more since I’ve had a kid. She should feel guilty for driving me to drink. (joking, but seriously)

  2. Beer: I don’t drink it, but my husband does and sometimes I just need to be a good wife and buy something for him.

  3. Vodka: Sometimes I’m just not feeling wine.

  4. Takeout: Some days you just need to waste money on having a burger  or pizza delivered rather than spending time making it at home.

  5. Jail broken Apple TV 2: yes, it was a bit expensive and yes, it is an older, less advanced version of the Apple TV, but movie tickets, babysitters, and renting movies on iTunes is expensive. We get all the free movies and TV shows we want. No ridiculously expensive theaters with $7 sodas, no babysitters, it pays for itself pretty quickly.

  6.  A babysitter: I hate spending money on babysitters, but sometimes we need a night away from our little fungus. We need to go out to dinner without having to rush through our meal to prevent a meltdown, we need to drink wine without our kid trying to put her hand into our glass, we just need to get our young-adult on, damn it!

  7. Music: I never feel bad about buying music. I feel like I should, but I just don’t. I listen to it constantly and it makes me happy, so I buy it.

  8. Shopping online: I’m not taking my one-year-old shopping… I’ve tried and it was an unsuccessful disaster. I don’t go overboard or do a lot of shopping, but when I do spend money on clothes or shoes I don’t feel bad. These days anything I can do to make me feel sexy I don’t feel guilty about. Will that new top make me feel sexy?  I don’t know, but I’m sure going to buy it and see. I spend half my days in sweatshirts covered in snot and slobber, so just knowing I have something cute to wear if I have the chance to get out makes me feel good.

  9. Anything from a thrift shop: I know whatever I buy I’m getting it cheaper than buying it at a regular store, so really, the way I look at it is I may be spending money but really I am saving money.

Being a Mom (or Dad) doesn’t mean you have to spend ALL of your time and money on your kid and as long as your kid is taken care of you should never feel guilty about spending a little extra on yourself. (Unless it is on crack or meth or anything along those lines… then you should feel guilty.) 

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