Carrying Your Loved Ones

I have always believed strongly that one of the main ways kids naturally learn is from copying the actions and attitudes of their parents and other people who surround them. Like the saying goes, monkey see, monkey do. So we do our best to model behaviors for the kids that are important to us. One of the key things we practice in our attachment parenting is baby wearing. In case you missed my previous post about attachment parenting, you can read it here. We carried Maddox pretty regularly in a carrier until he was about 2, and Marlow is basically a baby kangaroo-living in her carrier during the day.
 
So it was only natural that Maddox’s behavior would copy ours with Marlow.  Josh has always been happy to wear a baby carrier, so when we are all together, we share the carrying. When Maddox saw us carrying Marlow around in a baby carrier, he often asked if he could carry Marlow. Since it isn’t quite safe for him to carry her, we found a great compromise. We found this Boba Mini Carrier from Shop Birth Blessings, and since we got it, Maddox has been carrying his stuffed animals and babies everywhere we go. He seems especially proud standing next to me while I carry Marlow in her carrier and he carries his babies in his. You can find this mini carrier and some other adorable designs here. I love these carriers. Now Marlow is stealing Maddox’s so often that I think I need another ASAP!

  

Maddox’s baby carrier has helped him learn the responsibility of caring for a baby, and this behavior has carried over into the way he cares for his sister. If this is at all indicative of what kind of a father he will be one day, I am beyond proud! When I asked Maddox what he thinks about his carrier he said “It’s awesome! My babies like being close to me and now I can hold my toys with both hands!” And that, in a nut shell, is exactly why I baby wear! My babies like being close to me and my hands are free so I can multi task!

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Re-Play Recycled

Today we received a box from RE-PLAY RECYCLE. When we opened it, Maddox and Marlow immediately took it over to “their” kitchen! They saw all the bright fun colors and assumed it was for them! Which it is, but this is not a toy!

With Maddox almost four years old and Marlow 16 months, both are now using table wear and cups I needed some new stuff! The things we used when Maddox was little did not hold up well, and now I needed multiples for both kids. When I saw a friend’s children using RE-PLAY RECYCLE, I immediately checked it out and fell in love with not only the cute collections of products, but their philosophy! Here are just a few reasons why I got rid of all of my kids other tableware:

  1. All of their products – which include plates, bowls, cups, forks and spoons – are made from recycled milk jugs! AND they use minimal packaging made from recycled paperboard! I love eco-friendly!
  2.  All of their products meet FDA requirements.
  3.  Their products are SO durable! The company even claims you can run over the plate with a car without damage. I may try that! 🤣 My friend has been using them since her kids were little and they still look perfect. And most importantly, in my book, everything is dishwasher safe!
  4. Their pieces are perfect for beginning eaters! They have forks and spoons that are made for little hands! Their plates have dividers and curved edges, making eating easier. And their cups have no-spill valves.
  5. The colors they have are adorable! I got the sorbet collection that is filled with a variety of cute pastel colors. They also have other collections like their Bold, Crayon, Rainbow, White, and Monochromatic. I’ve linked my collection below.
  6. You can buy everything from Amazon, Walmart, Target, Whole Foods, and Kroger! Can I get a hallelujah?🤣 Easy shopping is key.
  7. Everything is so affordable! Check out the links below to view their collections as well as individual pricing for each piece.

I keep all of the kids dishes and cups in small cubbies that they can access themselves. I’m big on teaching kids age appropriate independence. So this is something very simple that they do themselves. Whenever it’s time to eat they know where all their stuff is, they get everything out and they set the table. Even if it’s just grabbing a snack. They know to grab their own dishes, go to their snack area, and get everything themselves. Marlow usually grabs 2 cups and a spoon while Maddox grabs one of every piece in the same color 🤣. Even if he’s just eating grapes he likes to have everything laid out and matching. He gets that from his dad…and well Marlow’s a little more like me.

So join me in getting rid of all the odds and ends you have collected and enjoy using these marvelous pieces with your little ones. You will not be disappointed! And be sure to check out Maddox’s presentation of his favorite RePlay pieces! This was TOTALLY his idea and I LOVE it!

This post was sponsored by Replay Recycle but all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Marlow’s First Birthday: The Non-Pinterest Party

Marlow’s 1st Birthday: The Non-Pinterest Party
Sometimes I feel the pressure to make things “photo worthy.” You see all these adorable kids parties and think ” I can totally do that!” I have about a million party ideas pinned on my Pinterest page. I have entire boards dedicated to DIY decorations that fit the perfect beautiful party theme! And I would LOVE to be able to say I’m featuring some crazy cool handmade, one-of-a-kind party decor for Marlow’s first birthday.. but that is just not the case! Ain’t nobody got time for that! 😂 And the party was absolutely perfect and turned exactly how I would have hoped!

Instead I took the easy way out! I hit up the dollar area at Target and stocked up on some adorable birthday decorations! They had an entire section of pastel, polka dot themes party decor that was PERFECT! They had banners, signs, balloons, and tiny party hats. I also grabbed a few things for goodie bags. Each bag had fruit snacks, a glow stick, a kazoo, bubbles, a bag of Pure Growth Organics popcorn, and these adorable handmade bows from Ivy & Simone!

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Sensitive Skin: HUSH SoCozy

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of SoCozy. All opinions are my own and not edited by the sponsor.

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Both Maddox and Marlow have very sensitive skin and I’m always afraid to try new products on them. Marlow has some eczema spots on her belly that flare up when I bath her too often or when she comes in contact with an irritant. Maddox has a sensitive scalp. He doesn’t really like having his hair washed or brushed because he has very thick hair! So I’d been searching for good products that would work for them. I decided to try SoCozy‘s new line called HUSH that is dermatologist and allergy tested. Just a heads up- I found SoCozy’s new hush line in the baby isle at Target and so far I love it! Since Maddox is super independent he wanted to try all “his” new products by himself.

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Britax B-Ready Stroller

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When I was pregnant with my first, Maddox, we started asking everyone we knew with kids what brand they recommended for car seats. After dozens of recommendations and tons of research we decided to go with Britax. We originally bought their travel system which came with the B-Safe infant seat and B-Agile stroller. This set was absolutely perfect for us at the time. We continued to use this set when Marlow was born but quickly realized we need a double stroller as well.

I knew I did not want one of those side-by-side double strollers because I felt like they were too big to actually take to the places we often went. And I knew I wanted one that could convert between two seats and one seat, depending on what i needed.

The Britax B-Ready was perfect! Had I known what I know now I probably would have just started with the B-ready stroller. However, at the time we only had one kid so I wasn’t even looking at double stroller options. Why do I love the Britax B-Ready? Here’s my top reasons:

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Baby Shoes

When Maddox was a baby I had no idea how important baby shoes were, more specicifically, good fitting flexible shoes that support them learning to walk. We went out and bought Josh’s favorite shoes, baby versions of adult athletic shoes. We had no idea that the fact that the soles were so clunky and nonflexible was a bad thing. But first kids are the tester babies, right?! Kidding. Anyway, with Marlow I knew from the start I wanted to find shoes that would encourage her learning to walk.

The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has developed recommendations  to help you find shoes that are helpful and not harmful as your baby learns to walk. The AAP gives three specific tips to follow when shopping for your baby’s first pair of shoes:

  1. Shoes should be lightweight and flexible to support natural foot movement.
  2. Shoes should be made of leather or mesh to allow your baby’s feet to breathe comfortably.
  3. Shoes should have rubber soles for traction to prevent slipping or sliding.

So I did some research and I found a few brands that I liked, but Livie and Luca really stood out. Not only do their shoes fit all the guidelines above, the quality of the shoes is amazing, and I found so many that were super cute.

Livie and Luca’s baby shoes were the prefect “first” shoe! They are incredibly soft and flexible! Since Marlow had never worn shoes up until that time,  I wasn’t sure if she was going to find these uncomfortable or not. The second I put them on her feet, she took off around the living room as though she wasn’t even wearing them. Marlow has very wide, chunky feet and so far these fit perfectly! They have a really wide base with lots of toe room and they are so easy to put on! They are also really light weight (totally unlike the first pair we put on Maddox)!  And most importantly, they are SUPER cute!

Go check out their adorable shoes and use the code: KIRAMARIE to get 15% off your order!

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Favorites: The Shop Binxy

IMG_8580I had no idea how different shopping with two kids would be! Marlow doesn’t love her carseat so keeping her in her seat in the shopping cart isn’t really an option for us. Not to mention there’s no room in the cart for groceries if her carseat is in there! If she’s asleep, I can put her in her Ergo Baby carrier and carry her that way sometimes. However, if she’s awake she wants to be looking around and interacting with people!

So when I saw the ShopBinxy I knew it would be perfect!It’s a baby hammock for your shopping cart! It’s soft and comfy, like laying in a hammock. She can still look around and be entertained. And it’s designed so I am still able to put groceries below her! Maddox also LOVES that he can turn around and play with her while he’s sitting in the cart as well. This awesome new inventions made shopping with two kids SO easy! Here’s a link to the website www.binxybaby.com Check out the pictures below of us shopping at Target!

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Favorites: Wooden Teething Toys

IMG_3624I wanted to start sharing some of my favorite baby things! First up on my list are Finn + Emma Wooden Teething Rattles.

I got these toys for Marlow but Maddox clearly loves him! He hasn’t even let her play with them yet! Not sure if it’s the cute animal designs or the soft rattle sound but he loves them! I know Marlow will soon too!

I’m obsessed with these teething rattles! They are made from Indian hardwood, finished with natural vegetable seed wax, and filled with beans. Check out this awesome organic company at  www.finnandemma.com! I love that all Finn + Emma products are made with G.O.T.S certified materials using fair trade labor practices.

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BONUS Get 15% off your order using this link: http://finnandemma.refr.cc/2HRN53H

 

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Lorena Canals Rugs

 

image2-2So I literally DO NOT buy rugs!

I love rugs, but with 5 dogs, a 2 1/2 year old, and one more on the way I had accepted the fact that rugs were the enemy! The one time I bought a rug, I swear my dogs had a race to see who could pee on it first and Maddox did his best to spill every possible drink, food, paint, you name it, on said rug. I can only spot clean so many things, and having rugs cleaned that often costs a fortune, so eventually I threw it away.

Then one day the rug fairies send me Lorena Canals Rugs!! First of all, their rugs are adorable! But most importantly they are MACHINE WASHABLE and they actually hold up in the wash! I kid you not. I got my new rug, waited for it to get dirty (I think it took 2 days) and poof, right in the washer it went! It came out looking exactly the same (but clean, of course).

Since Maddox still co-sleeps and Marlow will be co-sleeping there was really no need for separate bedrooms. We decided a shared bedroom for storing clothes and a shared playroom were better. So I wanted a rug that was gender neutral. When I saw this one with a boy and girl on it, I had to have it! Cute side note: When I first put the rug down he said “Look that’s Maddox, a heart, and Marlow.”

So I just had to share this rug from a great company that understands the needs of all the moms (and dads) out there who want good design in a rug they can enjoy using!

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My Nursing Favorites

Planning to breastfeed? If so, these are my favorite nursing must haves!

Nursing Pillow: I used Maddox’s boppy pillow. It doubles as a nursing pillow and positioning pillow for babies to lay on. Here’s the boppy pillow I used.  Extra bonus- They come with tons of super cute covers!

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Nipple Cream: Buy LOTS of nipple cream! I applied the cream immediately after nursing Maddox and reapplied throughout the day. Here’s the one I used: Nipple Cream

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Nipple Gel Pads: If I wasn’t nursing or pumping I was wearing these gel pads. I also used these  hot-cold therapy pads for extra comfort.

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Nursing tops: I literally lived in these nursing tank tops. They were super comfy, convenient for nursing and cute! It also has a soft, built-in bra. (I also lived in nursing maxi dresses and I have a follow-up post about my other favorite nursing friendly clothing company coming soon!)

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Nursing Bras: I wasted a ton of money on nursing bras before Maddox was born. I thought I wanted cute bras with underwire. I was wrong! I wore these comfy nursing bras almost exclusively for the first few months.

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Breast Pump/Accessories: If you’re planning to go back to work, or pump so your partner can join in feeding time, or just trying to increase your milk supply you need a pump. I got mine for free through my insurance at www.yummymummy.com. Check it out before you go buy one! I got the exact one I had planned on purchasing at the store and it was completed free! I got the Medela Pump in Style and loved it. I also got accessories like Medela bottles, milk storage bags (to freeze milk), and the Medela Calma Breastfeeding Nipples.

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WATER: Always keep it close by! The second I would start nursing Maddox I would be overwhelmed with how thirsty I instantly became! It sounds ridiculous but it’s true! (I always kept snacks handy too!)

I’m obsessed with Amazon so most of my links for products are from there but you can buy all these at most other baby stores or online.

 

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