Sick Toddler

Well, I had ideas for today’s post, but Bubs has a cold. For those of you who do not have kids or your kid hasn’t been sick yet, basically what that means is that the whole night & day revolve around your sick child.

.

20131120-144027.jpg

Poor Bubs, of course there isn’t much I can do for him, and he doesn’t understand why he doesn’t feel good. 😦

He went to bed last night as normal, then starting at 10:45 pm, he woke up EVERY hour until about 5:45, then he slept about 2 1/2 hours and we’ve basically been up since. (For those of you who do not have kids, that means this Momma was up every hour as well).

His nose is so stuffed up, I got about a 25-30 min nap out of him earlier. Which was about enough time to drink a cup of coffee, then his congestion woke him up.

I tried to give him a bath after his short nap, normally he LOVES bath time, but not today. He screamed the entire time. At least he was clean for a few mins, the slobber & snot seem to be never ending. After his brief bath, he ate a snack of crackers & a banana. The rest of the afternoon has consisted of this…

20131120-144430.jpg

It’s only 2:45… I am exhausted and so is he! I thawed a jar of my homemade organic chicken noodle soup for him to eat later, hopefully that helps a little.

20131120-150354.jpg

I guess my blog ideas will have to wait until tomorrow. I’m off to warm up my cup of coffee for the 4th time today.

What do you do when your toddler is sick?

Trash to Toddler Treasure

Can you believe someone was throwing this out?? Luckily my mom saw it by the curb and “rescued” it! (Now do you see where I get my ideas to reuse things?? LOL) What’s even funnier? Imagining my mom driving up to someone’s house & picking this out of their trash!

photo 1-1

Bubs is one lucky little boy! Nana wanted her only grandson to have a kitchen to play with and what better way to get one than for free!?

photo 5-1

photo 2-1

photo 3-1

So, when this kitchen showed up at my house, it was pretty disgusting… lucky for Bubs, his Momma is a bit of an OCD cleaner… as I posted before, I prefer to use green cleaners, I like to make my own, and I love to use vinegar to clean with. All of that being said, there are just some things in life that need to be cleaned with bleach. This kitchen is one of those things.

photo 4

So while Bubs napped one day, I carried this gross thing into my basement laundry room, then I scrubbed and scrubbed this little kitchen, rinsed it with a wet rag and then carried it outside to hose it down.

photo 6-1

photo 8

photo 9-1

photo 10-1

Wow! What an improvement!!

photo 14

photo 15

I dried it off, brought it back into the basement and set it up, so when Bubs woke up from his nap, I could show him his new kitchen. He LOVED it!!!

photo 12-1

photo 11-1

photo 13-1

I am so glad my mom was able to prevent this “vintage” play kitchen, actually called the Little Tikes Party Kitchen, from going to the landfill! I know Bubs loves his new kitchen and I love that we got it for free ! I think next summer it will go outside for him to play with (which I am assuming is where it came from, since it was THAT dirty!).

Do you have any treasures you found in someone else’s trash?

Halloween Fun!

Wow… what can I say, I have been missing from the blogosphere for a few weeks now… I cannot believe how fast this fall season is passing by! Halloween came & went so fast!

Austin the zebra

Austin the zebra

Bubs was a zebra for Halloween this year. I made his costume (can you tell?). Growing up, my mom always made our costumes, and I would like to pass that tradition on to my children as well!

I had a great idea of how I would paint stripes on a white hoodie & white leggings… well… it turns out that a white hoodie & white leggings are hard to find for a 16 month old! I did, however, find zebra leggings & a zebra hoodie… so I bought those. So, I guess you could say I “cheated” a little on my costume making, but that wasn’t my plan, I had no other option! I did make ears & a maine out of felt to add to the hood, I used black socks (over his shoes), and black mittens (well, for a few mins anyway) on his hands for the hooves. I think it turned out great!

My Zebra

My Zebra

Zebra butt

Zebra butt

We had such a busy Halloween season (I’m not complaining), I have always loved Halloween! Bubs got to wear his Halloween costume three times!!

Oct 20th our town had a Halloween festival in our downtown park, the kids could trick or treat, there was live children’s music, and a costume contest! They even had a costume contest for pets! We brought Lexi, dressed as a cow, with us. Halloween is her favorite holiday, she LOVES all the crazy kids running around! We met our neighbors in town, N & Bubs had a great time just playing and watching the other kids. We did not collect candy, since Bubs isn’t going to eat it anyway!

Austin 3

Whoa… don’t fall over!

Austin 1

Trying to sneak some of N’s candy!

Family 2

Daddy, Bubs & Momma

Family Photo

Family Photo

As unhappy as Baby Girl looks in this photo, she really was thrilled to be downtown with all the kids! She just isn’t that photogenic (well, and she’s not too thrilled to be dressed as a cow, although, she LOVED that everyone “moo’d” at her!)!

Next up… Oct 25, Plymouth Whalers OHL hockey game, Halloween night! They had trick or treating between periods, and lots of kids dressed up! Again, we did not collect candy, but it was fun for Bubs to see all the kids dressed up!

Walking with Daddy

Walking with Daddy

Snack Break

Snack Break

Hanging out

Hanging out

Picture with Daddy

Picture with Daddy

Snuggling with Uncle Mike

Snuggling with Uncle Mike

Bubs is such a good sport, he loves his Plymouth Whalers, even though we were out past his bedtime, he did great at the game!

Of course, next is Halloween… Oct 31… Austin’s cousins, Gavin & Avery came over to trick or treat with Austin. Too bad I didn’t get a picture of the three of them together BEFORE trick or treating… it was raining here on Halloween, so when we got back from trick or treating the kids were SOAKED… well, luckily Bubs was not that wet, since he was in his stroller. Here are some photos of him…

After trick or treating

After trick or treating

My Zebra after trick or treating

My Zebra after trick or treating

We did collect candy on Halloween, mainly because Bubs saw that his cousins were getting candy… he was so cute, wanting to give the next house the candy he got from the previous house! Our neighbors are so sweet, many of them were prepared for little trick or treaters, they had “toddler approved snacks”, things like fruit snacks, cheddar fish, small suckers and cheetos! Bubs had such a great time, I can’t wait for next year!!

What did your kids dress as this year for trick or treating?? Did the weather bother them?

Yummy Zucchini “Pasta”

I am so sorry for being MIA! Bubs has recently reached his “needy” stage. I was kind of hoping he would never have one! (Wishful thinking, I know!)

Zucchini Pasta

Here is our healthy, 100% Organic lunch! Bubs & I both LOVED it! And we finished it all!! This “pasta” bowl is made with organic zucchini, organic red pepper, organic onion, organic garlic, organic mushrooms, and organic extra-virgin olive oil.

How did I make the “noodles” you ask?? I bought one of these handy spiral cutters on Amazon.

My mom had this spiral cutter this summer while we were up north, she made us zucchini noodles, they were great! So I decided to buy the same cutter. Today is the first time I have used it! Great results, I definitely recommend it!

Onto the steps of our lunch…

First I washed the zucchini and used my potato/carrot peeler and peeled “Stripes” into the zucchini.

Organic Zucchini

Organic Zucchini Before

Then, I spun the zucchini into the spiral cutter, this is what is left of the zucchini afterwards.

Organic Zucchini After

Organic Zucchini After

This is what 2 zucchinis look like, after being “spun” thru the spiral cutter.

Zucchini Noodles

Zucchini Noodles

Then I cut up some organic mushrooms, organic onion, organic red pepper and organic garlic, I dumped them all into my stir fry pan (which, I LOVE by the way!) and added my organic EVOO…I let these sauté a bit before adding the zucchini noodles.

Stir Fry

Stir Fry

Once I added the zucchini noodles, I sautéed for just a few mins, then poured into a large bowl, Bubs and I ate them just like that, no seasoning, or anything (none needed, really!).

Veggie "Pasta" Bowl

Veggie “Pasta” Bowl

Ingediants:

2 Organic Zucchini (About medium size)

1/2 Organic  Sweet Onion

3 Cloves Organic Garlic (chopped finely)

4 Organic Mushrooms, cut into strips

1/2 Organic Red Pepper, cut into strips

1-1 1/2 TBSP Organic Extra-Virgin Olive Oil

Heat oil in wok or large sauté pan, dump onion, garlic & red pepper in, sauté about 4-5 mins, add mushroom slices, sauté about 2 mins, add zucchini noodles, sauté about 2-3 additional minutes or until noodles are tender, pour into bowl & enjoy!!

Maybe next time I will try some different seasonings, or parmesan cheese…. I can’t wait to try other veggies!!

Have you ever made a vegetable “noodle” before??

Little Artists

Well, Hello Monday!

What a great weekend! Yesterday I was trying to think of something fun to do with Bubs outside, we are having this AMAZING late summer Fall weather! It was perfect out, not a cloud in the sky, high 60s, with LOTS of warm sun!!

I pinned a safe kids finger paint recipe on Pinterest, MONTHS ago, and have been dying to try it out with Bubba. I kept putting it off, thinking “the older he is, the more he will enjoy the paint”, and hoping the weather would cool down a bit too. Well, Sunday was the day to find that recipe and make the paint! So I pulled up my Pinterest boards and went on a search for it, guess what?, it turns out, I pinned about 5 different safe kids paints… I had a specific recipe in mind, so it took a while to find it. Here it is if you want to make it yourself. (I made a double batch).

I mixed up the recipe, then added my food coloring… I had 13 colors!!

Paint 1I called our neighbors to see if N wanted to come paint with Bubs, they were in and headed on over! While we were waiting for them to arrive, I made a few stamps out of potatoes, I thought the kids would have fun using the stamps, as well as, painting with their fingers!

PotatoesBubba wasn’t that interested in actually painting, he wanted to eat the paint and eat the potatoes!

AustinWe tried to have N show Bubs how to use the stamps…

Austin 4It didn’t work out so well… Bubs took it and “ran”…

Escapee 1

Escapee 3As you can see, he was eating the potato (see the paint on his face?!), he ended up eating most of the square off of the square “stamp”!

Meanwhile, N was making a layered masterpiece!

Painting 1 Painting 3 Painting 4 Painting 5

All-in-all it was a fun Fall day, spent outside with friends! We will definitely do the paint again, it was a GREAT recipe, safe for the kids to eat, did not stain their skin and made vibrant colors! Now that we know it washes off easily, I think next time we will do it inside, maybe that way Bubba won’t be as distracted!

What are some fun Fall outdoor activities you have done to enjoy this weather??

Got Laundry?

Don’t we all? Laundry seems to be never-ending, especially if you have kids! I am always looking for green ways to do laundry and reduce the amount of chemicals used on our clothing, bedding & towels! Since Bubba was born, I stopped using fabric sheets. They recommend parents of new babies not use them, as they can irritate baby’s delicate skin. I wanted to do a little research of my own, so I went to EWG’s Guide to Cleaning and looked up our dryer sheets… WOW… way to scare a new mom!!

For the most part, I didn’t miss them! EXCEPT when I am washing fleece/fuzzy blankets and sheets! Those dryer sheets always helped reduce the extreme amount of static created by fleece and made our sheets seem softer & more comfy… well the risk isn’t worth it, in my opinion!!

I remembered reading somewhere (I am sorry, I can’t remember where!) that vinegar could be used as a fabric softener… so I decided to give it a go! And guess what? I LOVE it! No vinegar smell, clothes come out softer and less static-y, AND without the use of chemicals!! I use distilled white vinegar and a downy dryer ball…. This is what I do…

Step 1: Grab your dryer ball, here is mine…

Dryer Ball

Step 2: Grab your vinegar, I buy store brands and usually have a few bottles around (since vinegar has MANY uses!)

Vinegar

Step 3: Pour desired amount into dryer ball (I like to fill it to the Extra Large line). Pull the plug to lock vinegar in the ball.

Step 4: Throw the ball into the washer with dirty clothes. Run wash cycle.

Step 5: Take clothes out of washer, throw in dryer, when dried, fold/hang and go about your day!

Easy-peasy! And chemical free!! It works GREAT all around, vinegar can also help reduce the soap residue that stays in fabrics, especially towels!!

Do you have any eco-laundry tips??

*Please comment below, on my blog! Thanks!

Just a Fall Monday…

Happy Monday! (Or not so happy in this household)
I’m not sure how all of your Mondays are going, but mine started out rough! Here’s how it went:
1) Bubba woke up at 8 am (he usually sleeps until about 8:45-9), he was super grouchy & did not want to go through our normal morning routine.
2) Bubs threw a screaming tantrum because he did not want to play with his toys in his play area (I let him roam the house instead)
3) I tried to feed him breakfast and he didn’t want anything besides crackers
4) I went to put some out-going mail in the mailbox and Bubs shut the front door, locking me out! (Thank God the sliding door was open or this Momma would have had a major meltdown! I did have to walk around the house in my skimpy PJ shorts & a hoodie though)
5) Bubs pulled a big bag of cashews out of the cupboard & dumped them all over the kitchen floor, he also had 4 is his mouth! (He likes cashews, but we cut them in small pieces for him, so 4 whole ones made me nervous!)
6) I put him down for his morning nap, which normally he falls asleep in less than 5 mins, this time… It took 30 min.

SILVER LINING – he slept 1 hour & 50 min AND I got an hour nap in!

The day was much better from that point on, we ate a late lunch and went over to our neighbor’s house for a play date!

Bubs loves to play with E & E’s daughter, N! Since today was such a nice day out, we played outside! Bubs had fun and came home and took another nice nap!

20130930-223546.jpg

20130930-223721.jpg

How did you enjoy (or not enjoy) your Monday?

Hot Summer Weather

Can you believe summer is almost over?? The weather has been all over the place this year, it feels like summer just started!

I am not ready for it to be fall yet (even though I do love fall too), but summer is my favorite season!!! Hot weather, sun bathing and going to the lake, what’s not to love? I guess I passed this love down to Bubba… What do you think? Here are some photos of our summer fun to send you on to your Holiday Weekend!

Water table from Nana & Papa!

Water table from Nana & Papa!

So excited to get in the pool, Bubs wouldn’t even wait for me to get his swimsuit on!

Swimming in my clothes!

Swimming in my clothes!

Pool Time!

Pool Time!

Looks like a good day for a swim…

Checking out the water

Checking out the water

Time to get in…

Checking the water temp

Checking the water temp

DSC_1716

Refreshing!

Bubs just LOVES to be outside, even if we aren’t playing in the pool…

Sandbox from Grandma & Grandpa!

Sandbox from Grandma & Grandpa!

DSC_1719

Handfuls of sand… at least its INTO the sandbox this time!

We have been trying to show Bubba how to bury his feet in the sand, I am not sure he gets it quite yet…

DSC_1722

Attempting to bury his foot…

Baby Girl likes the sandbox too… she is also a photo bomber (I’ll show that in another post!)

Baby Girl photo bomb

Baby Girl photo bomb

More outdoor fun!!

photo 1 photo 4 photo 1 photo 5 photo 4 photo 2 photo 3

I am not sure if you all agree with me, but I think that might have been cuteness OVERLOAD!!

I am looking forward to this weekend, we will be spending it with family & close friends! I think Bubba is REALLY going to like swimming in the lake!!

Do you have any plans for Labor Day Weekend??

Party’s Over…

Birthday Boy!

Well… the party is over and is it ever! I am so glad everything turned out so good! Bubs was very spoiled and got some GREAT gifts! We had tons of food, so we sent family home with leftovers… no one seemed to want any cake for the road though!? So what does that mean? The hubby and I picked at it… I was pretty much “caked-out”, but he was able to “not let it all go to waste”! Once he was done pigging out eating it, we threw the rest away!!

The day after Bubba’s party was Father’s Day, so we were running around all day. Brunch with my parents then dinner with the hubby’s parents. By the time we got home we were exhausted! We put Bubs to bed, got ready for Monday morning, then went to bed ourselves! I have to say, Monday came WAY.TOO.FAST!!!

Monday was Bubba’s actual birhtday, we had a very “chill” night. We gave Bubs his presents from us, relaxed in front of the TV and ate dinner. Dinner was leftovers from Bubs party, the hubby had ice cream and I had some frosting (right out of the container) for dessert! Frosting is definitely one of my weaknesses…. the cake is ok, but the frosting?, the frosting is the BEST part of cake!! Knowing how out of control I would continue to be while the leftover frosting was in the fridge, I felt the need to get rid of it ASAP….

frostingI know, I know… I should have done the green thing and rinsed out the containers and recycled them… but I just had to get rid of them as soon as possible so I would STOP eating it!!! Totally a “green fail”, but sometimes we got to do what we got to do!

What are some of your weaknesses when it comes to food??

Bubba’s First Birthday

I can not believe my baby is one year old already! Where did the last year go?? Of course the first birthday party always has to be a big deal, so I spent probably 2 months planning it! Bubba loves the water and loves his sea creature bath toys, so I chose to do an “Under The Sea” theme for the party!

Sea Creature Bath Toys

Sea Creature Bath Toys

I made the invitations and mailed them out, then was explaining the invites to a friend, she told me she had some decorations leftover from her son’s baptism party. It just so happened that the colors she used and the colors I chose were the same, so she let me borrow her decorations!

IMG_3624

Reused Poof Balls

Reused Poof Balls

Although I reused some of my friend’s party decorations, Bubba’s party wasn’t exactly green. I ordered paper plates, cups and napkins that I found online that had sea creatures on them! Paper products just seemed easier for a child’s birthday party, that was held outside. I also made a paper banner for the wall and one for his highchair! We did use our real silverware, real glasses for the “Adult beverages” and real dishes for the food buffet.

RAS_3257

DSC_3344

I made the cake myself, it didn’t turn out as great as I hoped (I tried to achieve the same Ombre effect that I did on his cake for his cake smash photoshoot, but it just didn’t come out as nice), but it was cute and tasted great (which is all that really matters, right?)! I even made candy sea creatures to use on the cake!

DSC_3333We didn’t have a huge party, just family, but all-in-all it was a perfect day!

Family photo

Family photo

When you plan a party, do you go for what’s easy or do you try to stay green?