Traveling Internationally with Kids (must haves!)

We just got back from spending 2 weeks in Iceland! We had our kids (ages 3 and 5 months) in tow.

Here are a few items that made our trip a success:

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  1. Portable sound machine. I kid you not, this is the best invention ever! It is $10, it can clip onto a stroller, carseat, baby carrier, etc! It runs off batteries (perfect for going international) and you can choose to have it run for 15, 30, and 45 minutes OR you can let it run forever. 🙂 This really helped with getting our kids to nap on the go, plus we used it in our sons crib at night. You can get it at Target or Amazon. (myBaby sound spa on-the-go sound machine) IMG_4767You can spy it hanging on the stroller and laying in the crib.   IMG_4336IMG_1818
  2. A baby Carrier. We brought along our Ergo for our 3 year old and our Infantino for our 5 month old. The Ergo was perfect for our 3 year old because it’s like getting a piggy back ride without having to use your arms! haha. The Infantino was perfect for our 5 month old because he loves to face forward and look out at the world. Both works so well for napping on the go and hiking! Both of these can be purchased on Amazon or target as well!IMG_2568(okay so this photo makes me laugh! My 3 year old wouldn’t put his arms under the straps and then fell asleep and was just flopping. 🙂 It was pretty funny!IMG_4066IMG_4170

  3. Headphones for the toddler. I got these completely adorable headphones on Amazon! Its a little headband with speaker by the ears. It stays on and if your kiddo  falls asleep it’s still comfortable! (CozyPhones kids headphones)IMG_4768
  4. Hust Hat. This bad boy can block out the loud noises when you’re trying to get the little ones to nap! It was a life saver for the plane, restaurants, and just being out and about! The plus side, it keeps the babe warm!! You can get it at Target or Amazon as well. IMG_4769

(so funny, the hat did slip down and cover my son’s eyes. He is under there somewhere!! ha 🙂 )IMG_4204

5. Pacifier Clips and a Wubanub. If you have a little baby like we do, that pacifier clip will come in so handy! You can clip it onto the baby carrier, clothes, carseat, etc! That way you don’t have to worry about losing it.

6. Stroller with a rain cover. This last one really all depends on the age of your kids and whether or not you’re expecting to be around rain. We went to Iceland and the weather there is so crazy. Luckily it was nice most of the time, but it would randomly rain throughout our whole trip. The stroller and rain cover were a life saver when it was raining. It helped keep our kids warm and dry, we also were happy to stick everything else under there (shopping bags, diaper bag, camera, etc!

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Well there you have it! That is my list of MUST HAVES. Stay tuned for my next post on what to pack in your child’s carry on bag.

 

Thanks for stopping by!

…until next time! xoxo ❤

Summer 2016

It’s finally nap time after a busy weekend. I’m laying in bed getting kicks and punches to the tummy from our sweet little Pip2 (aka bun in the oven). I think I’m *finally* starting to feel better at 20 weeks. Don’t get me wrong, I still throw up about once per day, but I don’t feel as sluggish and nauseous. My hubby actually said this the other day, ‘I can tell you’re feeling better because our house isn’t a mess anymore.’ LOL. I was like ‘WHAT??’. I mean, I knew it was messy, I was barely keeping up with the day to day of taking care of Preston and Bentley without wanting to lay on the couch the entire day (which i never actually did). But I do LOVE a clean and organized house! As does my hubby, we are both clean freaks! So he must have known how horrible I felt since I wasn’t cooking, or cleaning, or enjoying my daily walks around the neighborhood with my boys. I have noticed that as long as I eat a few squares of a Cadbury Milk Chocolate Bar at night, I’m able to keep my prenatal down, and I don’t have ‘evening sickness’ like I used to. (poor me having to eat chocolate before bed every night. 😉 ) Here are a few belly pictures of my progress!

18 Weeks:

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Here is a picture of me at 19 weeks pregnant (last week). I had to cut my face off because, yuck.

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I’m 20 weeks now! Pic at 20 weeks 5 days:

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Anyway, back to the reason for the post!

We are making the most of our last summer as a family of 3. Our weeks have been so busy, i mean really, every single day we have something going on! It’s been quite nice! It makes the weekdays fly by for sure! My hubby travels quite a bit for work so as long as we stay busy, Preston doesn’t seem to miss Daddy as much.

Although, I have to admit, I do love being at home and enjoying the simplicity in the day to day when we’re not so ‘on the go’.

Preston just finished his last day of swimming lessons! We had them outside this year and it was so perfect!! Preston is such a strong kicker and loves pushing off the wall on his back. He’s got his doggy paddle down, just not without my support and help holding him at the waist. He still hasn’t put his head underwater–he’s too scared! But he does know how to put just his nose and mouth under and to blow bubbles out. So at least there’s that! We aren’t pool rats by any means, so i think just a little more time in the water and he’ll want to submerge his whole head eventually. He’s only 2 though, so I’m not worried! 😛

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each kid got a little certificate for participation. 🙂

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Finally got a pic of both of us from his swimming lessons!

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Chad was in the Twin Cities for work a couple weeks ago, so Preston and I drove up on a Thursday to meet up with him after work.

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This is how I single parent it.

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He has every other Friday off work–so we got a hotel and decided to hit up the Mall of America and IKEA.

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We stopped at Lego Land, the Sea Life Aquarium, we went to the Rainforest Cafe, and then headed to Nickelodeon World. Preston was so good!! We got there right at 10am and stayed until 3pm. He usually naps at 1pm-but did so well for us!!

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At the Rainforest Cafe (he was too distracted to even look at the camera once)..but that’s why we went! We knew he would love the animals and the storms!

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A few rides:

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We were able to meet up with some friends for dinner that evening at Osaka Japanese Steakhouse. We got some sushi and let me tell you, it was the best sushi roll i had ever had!! OMG. It was called the BMW – spicy tuna, fish eggs, avocado, some sort of sauce! My mouth is watering just thinking about it. The seaweed salad was on point as well.

The next day we met up with some other friends for ice cream and a park play date! It was the end to a perfect weekend!

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Preston has been in heaven with all the construction work going on around our house. Every day we walk down to see what they’re doing. The workers are always so kind and usually come over to talk with us and it’s so sweet.

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We read him ‘Goodnight Goodnight Construction Site’ every day before nap time and bedtime (along with others-but this is his fave). They say goodnight to all the construction equipment and Preston loves it!! He’s started tucking in his construction equipment before bed too. It’s adorable.

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^^ the big cement mixer was his potty training gift! We aren’t big toy buyers–so this was huge for him!! (toys-clutter that he usually plays with for like 5 minutes. lol)

for example, one day we went to toddler time at the pool and i forgot Preston’s water toys. BUT being the good Mom that i am, i gave him my barf cup from the car to play with! LOL! He had so much fun playing with that cup at the pool! seriously, best water toy ever!!! (yes, i cleaned it!!!)

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The neighbor kids have been coming over to play with Preston everyday. It is so nice because they will play with him outside and I can stay inside and get some stuff done around the house! He loves playing with the big kids and they are always teaching him new things, too! It takes a village! 😛

I randomly potty trained Preston one week. I’ve been wanting to do it, especially during the summer and before Pip2 arrives in December–but i just hadn’t found the constant time at home to do it. Well one evening we were playing outside and I just threw undies on Preston. He played and played and I eventually asked him if he needed to go potty, he said yes, and went over and peed on a tree. lol! No accident at all for the whole evening. The next day when he woke up I went straight to undies, he didn’t have an accident all morning, we went and ran errands and he went potty at TJ Maxx (I had his potty along in the stroller to whip out when needed). It wasn’t until we were at the play place until he did have a little accident. That was the only accident that day though!! The next day (day 3) we went to the gym and he was in the nursery and maybe started to go and realized he had undies on and didn’t continue, his undies were a tad damp when I went to get him after an hour and a half at the gym! Not bad, i’d say!! especially being in that new place with diff adults and a foreign potty. He’s pretty much been potty trained since –that was about 3 weeks ago. He’s had his accidents on occasion, but not that often at all! I still do a diaper at night and a pull-up during nap time, i mean, he’s not even 2.5 yet! I’ve got the main part down, once he’s dry while he’s sleeps maybe ill think about doing undies, but until then, i enjoy uninterrupted nap time! Plus he still sleeps in his crib, so not sure how that would work besides yelling for me that he has to pee. We’ll see! Maybe once he’s in a big boy bed!

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practicing to be a big brother!!! He named his baby “joe”.

That’s about us in a nutshell!

Our little boy is so good. He’s really, really good. He’s polite and kind. He’s sweet and so fun to be around! Lack of sleep is the only time we deal with cranky Punky–it’s very rare! I’ve loved our time at home together. It’s something I will NEVER forget or regret.

Makes me nervous for Pip2. Am I in for a rude awakening?? I feel like I got lucky with Preston in the ‘all-around-good-boy-department’. We shall see…

Now, I need to try and take a quick power nap before Preston wakes from his nap! 🙂

…until next time! ❤  xoxo

Snow Day!!

We’ve been enjoying this #snowday so much! We made smoothies with breakfast and went outside to frolic in the snow!

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We did a little shoveling and built a nice big fort!! #fortpunk

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It’s pretty hard to see with all the white. but it’s there!

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We tried building a snowman, but Bentley had the neighbor dog over to play, and they kept eating our snowballs. Pretty soon it just turned into a snowball fight. Punk and me against the dogs.

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Preston is a little snow bunny!! He didn’t want to come inside!!

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When we got back inside we ate lunch and baked some sweet potato chips for dessert. 😛

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Preston is the best little sous chef!

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Not only did he help me cook lunch and make dessert, he helped me make a little coconut oil & grapefruit lotion.

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cute jars are compliments of Target $1 spot! woohoo!

It’s hard to believe yesterday was sunny and 35 degrees and today its a blizzard! This was us yesterday, soaking up all the vitamin D we could get:

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That wraps up this snow day! Hopefully after nap time we can go out and finish that snowman we were trying to make earlier!

{{slight pause in the blog post as I hear Preston crying from his crib, I run upstairs and he has nail polish all over his hands and crib, at first I thought it was blood (whew, it wasn’t) …but it was everywhere! I’m thinking blood might have been easier to clean up….but I still prefer the nail polish over the blood. Now i’m wondering how he ended up in bed with a bottle of my (pink & red) nail polish…time to move it up a little higher…}}

…until next time! xoxo ❤

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Sensory & Busy Board

we made this busy board for Preston when he was about a year old. We’ve slowly been adding to it, and it’s pretty much done for the most part!

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He loves playing with it and so does the little boy I babysit for on occasion!

We used a variety of things and found them at Lowes, Ace, or Wal-Mart!

  1. Street address numbers 1-5
  2. (3) door stoppers – fun for flicking!
  3. (2) wheels for spinning 🙂
  4. (3) drawer pulls in two different colors
  5. A chain lock
  6. a large drawer pull handle to hang things on
  7. a light switch
  8. a mailbox flag
  9. wooden letter to display the alphabet and vowels
  10. wooden circles that I painted purple and white – attached with velcro
  11. random wooden shapes, an apple, and a few animals. I painted them and attached them with Velcro!
  12. door knobs for turning

we added the letters more recently because Preston is obsessed! He’s known how to identify almost all of the letters in the alphabet since he was 18 months old. In the picture above he’s pointing to the letters and naming them!

Because of this board, Preston can now identify and say, butterfly (bub-By) bird (buwd) apple, snail (nose) lol! The last one cracks me up!!

I think I’m going to super glue a quarter, dime, nickel, and penny on there eventually. (On the right hand side, vertically, by the end of the alphabet.) That way he can learn to identify those. He is also obsessed with change and putting it into his piggy bank. 🙂

We made it on MDF particle board. I painted it and hubby did most of the hard work, I superglued the letters and velcrowed the shapes/animals.

We did attach the board to the wall so it can’t fall on Preston. But we plan on leaving it there until we are finished having kids! 😛

here is a better look at it!

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Hopefully your kids enjoy it just as much as ours does!

…until next time! Xoxo