Tag Archives: parents

Frugal Friday – Save Money on Diapers

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I’m always keeping an eye out for ways to save money now that I’m on maternity leave.  I wrote a post on saving money when buying baby stuff and in this post I will be dealing directly with diapers.  Since our Rainbow has come home, he has surprised and impressed us with his ability to fill copious amounts of diapers.  Hubby and I stocked up on diapers when we could prior to his birth but we have already had to do a few diaper runs.  Being a big boy, he outgrew the newborn size within a first few days leaving us with 2 packs we never even opened.  So here are a few ways to save money on diapers and it doesn’t involve changing them less.

  • Store Brands.  Some people swear buy them or curse them, but store brands are generally less expensive and do go on sale periodically like brand name diapers.
  • Coupons.  I am a fan of these and I have a few selected sites that sends me high value coupons to my favourite brands.
  • Reward Programs.  Pampers and Huggies both offer rewards programs and will occasionally send you free samples in the mail.
  • In Store Promotions.  Right now, Shopper’s  Drugmart has a promotion going on with diapers where there is a $4 off coupon attached to each diaper product.  They also have a Optimum Points and V.I.B. program and for simply signing up, I received 2 full packs of diapers as well as high value optimum point coupons.

I didn’t include cloth diapers as I don’t use them and I’m not fully aware of the cost effectiveness on them.  I have friends who swear by them however, so I’d welcome any input on cloth 🙂

Daddy Quotes

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A father is someone that holds your hand at the fair makes sure you do what your mother says holds back your hair when you are sick brushes that hair when it is tangled because mother is too busy lets you eat ice cream for breakfast but only when mother is away he walks you down the aisle and tells you everything is gonna be Ok! ~ Anonymous

The father of a daughter is nothing but a high-class hostage. A father turns a stony face to his sons, berates them, shakes his antlers, paws the ground, snorts, runs them off into the underbrush, but when his daughter puts her arm over his shoulder and says, “Daddy, I need to ask you something,” he is a pat of butter in a hot frying pan. ~ Garrison Keillor

It is impossible to please all the world and one’s father. ~ Jean de La Fontaine

Parents are often so busy with the physical rearing of children that they miss the glory of parenthood, just as the grandeur of the trees is lost when raking leaves. ~ Marcelene Cox

Be kind to thy father, for when thou were young, who loved thee so fondly as he? He caught the first accents that fell from thy tongue, and joined in thy innocent glee. ~ Margaret Courtney

All fathers are invisible in daytime; daytime is ruled by mothers and fathers come out at night. Darkness brings home fathers, with their real, unspeakable power. There is more to fathers than meets the eye. ~ Margaret Atwood, Cat’s Eyes

The father is always a Republican toward his son, and his mother’s always a democrat. ~ Robert Frost

My son and daughter tell me where they are in very different ways. I know where my son is because I hear him. I know where my daughter is because she tells me. ~ Anonymous

A father is always making his baby into a little woman. And when she is a woman he turns her back again. ~ Enid Bagnold

“Mommy, Where Do Babies Come From?”

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228149Oh yes, that bomb dropped last week.  I guess I had it coming now that we are pregnant, but I didn’t think at 4, she would be asking me.  We were getting ready for school and she came up to me with the most curious look on her face.

“Mommy, where do babies come from?” she asked.  I stood there for a good 5 minutes trying to find the most age appropriate answer.

“Umm, where do you think they come from?” I asked using the movie ‘Knocked Up’ as my saving grace.

“I think when you eat food it sits in your stomach until it grows into a baby,” she answered seriously.

“Yup.”  And that was the end of the discussion.  I wish I had something much better to offer at the time, but I was unprepared and needed time to figure out what, if anything I wanted to provide given her age.

I started researching how was the best way, if it was appropriate to tell them at a young age and what repercussions to expect.  From what I gathered, any age is appropriate as long as the material is age appropriate and straightforward.  A study showed that children who were given information from an early age and information that continued on throughout youth and puberty were less likely to have unprotected sex, teen pregnancy and STD’s.  That was enough to convince me to give her the facts.  And besides, I don’t want to be that mother (or grandmother) on Teen Mom or 16 and Pregnant.  Nooo thank you.  I ran into my neighbour, who is also the blogger from Mafa’s World, she suggested ‘It’s Not The Stork’ by Robie H. Harris.   So off I went to my local book store and kindly approached the sales rep.

“Um excuse me, do you have any books on sex,” I whispered, “that are appropriate for 4 year olds?”

“Yes, sure, follow me,” she replied and led me to the children’s section.  She said that most parent decide what books they want and how much they edit.  She handed me a book about periods.

“Um, no sorry, for 4 year olds, not 14 year olds.  I need a book about where babies come from.”

She handed me ‘It’s Not The Stork’ as well as ‘A New Baby Is Coming! A Guide For A Big Brother Or Sister’ by Emily Menendez-Aponte.  I paid for the books and went on my way.

I was so nervous picking her up from school that I must have dropped the bag about 6 times.  Flashbacks of my ‘sex talk’ came flooding back.  I was maybe 12 years old and I was in the living room watching the original version of Degrassi Junior High, the episode where Spike announces she’s pregnant.  My mother whom was sitting in the kitchen saw what was on the TV.

“Do you have any questions?” she yelled.

And as quickly as she asked, I quickly replied, “Nope!”

And that was the extent of my sex talk in my preteens.  She always had warned me about boys and their intentions, STD’s and pregnancy but that was definitely the moment that stuck out in my head.

So when the Princess and I got home, I read ‘A New Baby is Coming!’  I really liked this book.  It didn’t give specifics but openly discussed that sometimes children have feelings of sadness, or anger and that it was alright to ask Mommy and Daddy about it.  We then read ‘It’s Not The Stork’ which gives a much more detailed account and cartoon pictures of private parts and how exactly babies are made. S-E-X.  When I said the three-letter word, the Princess just looked at me with this quasi confused and disgusted look on her face.  I didn’t give her the how to’s, but she was pretty much content with what I told her.  But when Daddy came home, she felt the need to inform him also.

After the Princess went to bed, Hubby flipped through the books and just said he was ‘not ready’ for this conversation yet.  I edited some of the information as she’s still only 4, but at least we have these materials available for future questions.  So far, she is content with what she knows.

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Tattle Tales: The Moral Compass of a 4 Year Old

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The Princess has been officially labelled “The sheriff” of her kindergarten class.  She stands behind her teacher at circle time and “scowls” at the children that are not listening to the teacher.  And everyday I receive a play-by-play of the events of the day.  I have a tattle tale.  At first I became slightly concerned by this behaviour, as frankly, no one really likes a tattle tale.   Then upon researching, I came to find out that developmentally, this is exactly what she is to be doing.  In a 4 year old’s social development, tattling on friends is just another normal, while irritating, stage that unfortunately lasts for about a year.

Children at this age are very aware of rules and don’t necessarily like it when other children do not follow them, so they tattle.  Sometimes they are being picked on or bullied, so they tattle.  What is a parent to do?  I have tried to explain that unless someone is getting hurt or is hurting her directly, the consequences of that behaviour is none of her concern.  I also have tried to teach her to try to solve these said issues without asking for an adult to intervene.   I understand that her tattling is her way of navigating her moral compass.  When someone else shoves, or curses or does something deemed “inappropriate” she is sure to let people know that it is “bad”.  I feel comforted at least that I know that she has a grasp of right and wrong, I just have to curb the tattling behaviour.

Did your children tattle and how did you change that behaviour?

Fun Things to do This Weekend in Toronto!

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Are you looking for some fun things to keep the children entertained this weekend?  Then look no further!

  • Baking at the Mackenzie House.  Come to the Mackenzie House at 82 Bong St to make some Victorian desserts on Dec 1st from 9 – 11:30.
  • Etobicoke Lakeshore Christmas Parade.  Come to Dwight Avenue & Lake Shore Blvd West for the 22nd Annual Christmas Parade.  On December 1st from 10 – 12 come see Santa!
  • Holiday Greeting Cards Family Workshop.   At the Todmorden Mills Heritage Museum and Arts Centre, families can come and build personalized holiday greeting cards on December 1st from 1 – 4.
  • Gingerbread Cookie Factory.  From 10 – 8 this weekend, the volunteers from Trillium Health Centre will be hosting their Gingerbread Cookie Factory at Sherway Gardens with all proceeds going to seniors health services.  Come decorate cookies with icing and sprinkles!
  • CP Holiday Train.  On December 1st, the CP Holiday Train will be coming to Toronto at 750 Runnymede Rd at 5:30.  This was personally one of my faves growing up! Cannot wait to bring the Princess.

Image c/o torontoist.com

Children’s Day

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Today is Children’s Day, a day to honour children globally.  So I have decided to post some of my favourite quotes about children.

 

“Children are great imitators. So give them something great to imitate.” – Anonymous

The Soul is healed by being with children.” – English Proverb

“An aware parent loves all children he or she interacts with – for you are a caretaker in those moments of time.” – Doc Childre

“No one has yet fully realized the wealth of sympathy, kindness and generosity hidden in the soul of a child. The effort of every true education should be to unlock that treasure.” – Emma Goldman

“Children are our most valueable resource.” – Herbert Hoover

“Only where children gather is there any real chance of fun.” – Mignon MacLaughlin

“Children are the living messages we send to a time we will not see.” – John W. Whitehead

Kiddie Yogurt Parfait Cups!

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I used to make these for myself but Princess wanted some for herself and I came up with a kid friendly version and she loves it.  This is really rich in Fibre, Vitamin C, Potassium, Magnesium and Calcium.

 

INGREDIENTS

  • 1/2 cup of child yogurt (your child’s favourite flavour)
  • 1/3 cup of assorted fruit (berries, bananas, grapes, any fruit your child likes)
  • 2 tbsp of granola
  • a drizzle of honey (optional)

DIRECTIONS

  1. Dice up the fruit
  2. Mix with yogurt
  3. Sprinkle granola on top
  4. Drizzle with honey
  5. Enjoy!

Five Rounds at Dinner Time!

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Welcome Ladies & Gentlemen.  You are all about to witness the greatest battle in Mommydom.  This is it, the Toronto Mommy/Daughter Dinnertime Showdown Championship! Through blood and sweat and tears, you are going to see two rivals face off in Five Rounds at Dinner Time.  Let’s Get Ready to Rumbleeeeeee!

In the blue corner, weighing only 35 pounds and measuring 3 1/2 feet, we have Princess Danger!  Don’t let her button nose, dimples and curly blonde hair fool you, she’s a Warrior of Defiance!  This featherweight has sharp teeth, a stiff upper lip and sneaky right hook.

In the red corner, the veteran heavyweight measuring 5 feet 3 inches tall and weights not to be told, Mommy Lionheart.  26 years in the culinary world have made her a contender, but that gullibility may be her downfall.  So Ladies and Gentlemen, please take your seats as Five Rounds at Dinner Time is about to begin!

DING!!!

ROUND 1

Mommy Lionheart starts with an opening jab; fajitas for dinner.  The smell entices Princess Danger and it brings her too close.  Wham!!!  Princess Danger falls for the grated cheese.  And a right hook from Lionheart with the surprise of chocolate milk for dinner.  Round 1 goes to Lionheart and the crowd goes wild!

ROUND 2

Round 2 is starting off with a bit of back and forth with Princess Danger crippling Mommy Lionheart with some hesitations of sitting in the middle chair.  Oh out of left field comes an uppercut to the Lionheart with Danger beginning to whine “I don’t like dinner.”  Lionheart stumbles but comes back with “You need to eat so you can grow big and strong.”  Great recovery.  Danger sits in the chair but is not out of the fight yet.  Tie for Round 2.

ROUND 3

The battle for dinner time commences in Round 3.  Both look at each other, weighing their strengths and weaknesses.  Lionheart has the authority, but Danger has a unparralleled stubbornness.  This will be a close one.  Danger is toying with Lionheart’s gullibility.  A few love taps are exchanged.  Danger plays with her food, dancing circles around Lionheart persistent nagging.  “Please eat.”  Danger returns with “I am eating, just slowllllyyy.”  Bam!!! Jab to the ribs of Lionheart with Danger sticking out her tongue.  Lionheart counters with Time Out!  Lionheart wins for Round 3.

ROUND 4

Danger is weary but not broken.  After returning from Time Out, she plays safe, slowly eating her dinner, watching Lionheart from the corner of her eye.  Lionheart eases back, sensing her contender’s submission.  Danger pulls a sneak move, dropping her fork on the floor and “accidentally” spilling her food on the floor.  “I’m all done now.” Kapow!!!  Lionheart counters with a fresh plate of food.  Danger, now agitated, starts to pout and pulls out all the stops.  “Daddy Big Softie Pants, please feed me.”  Lionheart screams “Interference, interference!”  The referee does nothing.  2 against 1, how unfair!  Lionheart does her best to keep the authority, but the arrival of the tag team player, throws her off and Round 4 goes to Danger!

ROUND 5

Lionheart is bruised and bloody but the fight continues.  The tag team is becoming too much.  Danger is only strengthened by Big Softie Pants and they begin dancing circles around her.  She swings tirelessly but it’s no use.  Danger stalls with eating.  “I want ice cream for dessert” Danger begs, and before Lionheart can jab in a “No!” Big Softie Pants throws a right hook “Only if you eat your dinner.”  Lionheart is dizzy.  She tries to negotiate with “Five more bites” but it is no use for the Dynamic Duo.  “You did good Danger, you can have ice cream.” Whoa did you see that coming?!  Despite Danger not finishing her dinner, Big Softie Pants delivers the final blow and it is the final blow to Lionheart!  TKO!!!!!!!!!  Total Knockout Win for Princess Danger and Daddy Big Softie Pants!!!!!!!!  The trophy for today is a Cotton Candy Ice Cream Cone with Sprinkles from Baskin Robbins.

 

*This is a fictionalized account of our dinner time dramas as of late.  Princess is testing every last nerve when it comes to dinner.  As you can see, I’m outnumbered”

The Princess and Mommy’s Home Spa Day

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Since toddlers and children are not overly welcome at spa’s and my Princess loves being pampered, I have to say I was at a bit of a loss.  How was I to keep both happy?  Keep the spa happy by not bringing my precious little girl who loves getting her nails done or get kicked out of said spa for bringing a 3 1/2 year old whose volume control is limited?  So I created a win-win situation.  Home Spa Day.  Armed with nothing more than Johnson & Johnson’s lotion, nail polish, a foot spa and epsom salts, I gave my Princess the Spa Day she was craving.

Someone is happy!

Product Review – Boogie Wipes

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Before today, I had never heard of Boogie Wipes by Little Busy Bodies, Inc.  I was at Toys ‘R’ Us today and Miss Princess’ nose was running like a faucet.  I told Hubby that we needed to get something because I had no tissues in my purse and all I could use to wipe her nose was left over receipts from my wallet.  Princess was running away from me screaming.

“Mommy, that hurts!” She would cover her nose with her hands and run away and hide like I was the Boogey Man (pun intended).

“Can you please stop hiding?  I really need to wipe your nose,” I pleaded.

Hubby had mumbled something to me but I was too busy to chasing her around that I didn’t even hear what he said.  I assumed he picked up a small case of wipes or something, but it wasn’t until we had stopped for lunch that I took the package out of the shopping bag that I realized it was specifically for boogers.

It is made with natural saline to dissolve the mucus and has Vitamin E, Chamomile & Aloe to soothe sore little red noses.  It is alcohol free, hypoallergenic and is gentle for kids of all ages.  The package I purchased was grape scented to which Princess said, “It smells like candy Mommy.”

When the Princess’ nose usually runs, I use either regular tissues or baby wipes.  I find that while they take care of the loose, wet stuff, the dried crusted stuff doesn’t come off without repeated wipes.  And my Princess hates repeated wipes.  I was surprised when this stuff wiped the dried stuff off in just one wipe.  Princess didn’t mind me wiping her nose this time.  For a 30 pack, it only cost $3.99 and is for external use only.

Goodguide.com rates this product an 8 out of 10 as it has some ingredients that raise a low-level health concern.  The ingredients that raise concern are Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate and Phenoxyethanol.  Phenoxyethanol  is a preservative that is primarily used in cosmetics and medications. It also can depress the central nervous system and may cause vomiting and diarrhea, which can lead to dehydration in infants according to the FDA.  Iodopropynyl Butylcarbamate is a water-based preservative agent originally used in the wood and paint industries, now also used in some cosmetics and personal care formulations.  Use is restricted in some countries due to its toxicity, especially acute inhalation toxicity.  According to the site, the ingredients are not potent in small doses, but only when exposed to high levels.

For this product, I am only giving it a 3 out of 5.  The deciding factors are cost, ease of use, and the negative ingredients.  You can visit the Boogie Wipes on Facebook and Twitter.  I received no compensation for this review and this is all my own opinion from my own experience.  I found facts about the ingredients online.

Boogie Wipes