Has going out to dinner become a nightmare? Here is how to make a restaurant busy bag to tame your toddler while they wait for food.
I remember when our oldest son was around one. Something changed. Going out to dinner started to get difficult. He knew being at a table meant yummy food was coming. By the time he was 18 months he was really getting cranky at restaurants. So, I came up with something that ended up being a life saver! A restaurant busy bag!
Its a bag filled with the necessary things like bibs, utensils, placemats, etc. Plus it had things to keep my little boys busy while we wait for food. I even kept a couple of snacks in there so in case they were inconsolable, I had something to keep their hunger at bay. Hey, mamas gotta do what mamas gotta do!
All you need is carry style bag that has some compartments. A hanging cosmetic bag actually works really well for this purpose. See my examples below.
Items to Add
Here is a list of some of the things I put in our busy bag. You certainly don’t have to copy me. These are just ideas for you.
Little People / Toy Figures
Mess Free Color Kits
Clorox Wipes / Wet Ones
I always keep some disposable placemats and bibs in the busy bag. I never understood why some restaurants bought hot plates to the kids. Also if you are like me and you don’t trust the rags they wipe down tables with…then this is for you! I also kept some kids utensils since my little ones struggled with adult sized ones. In addition, I kept some Clorox wipes or Wet Ones to wipe their hands or surfaces. I even kept a couple of stain remover wipes because accidents happen!
The rest is for them to keep their little hands busy. Really as long as it fits, you can bring it with you in the bag.
I always kept this in our car so it was ready to go. It was so nice when my boys no longer whined and fussed at restaurants. Now they have a distraction. Over time, kids will learn how to sit still and patiently wait at a restaurant. But until then, I hope this idea helps you like it helped us.
If you are considering homeschooling, you maybe wondering where to start and how to choose curriculum. Well, I have some resources to help with that. Here are 4 books you need to read before you homeschool.
This post contains affiliate links. Should you make a purchase through one of the links I provide, I may receive a small percentage at no cost to you.
So you’ve decided to homeschool or perhaps you are still seriously considering it. Maybe you are looking for some direction. I’m a proud second-generation homeschooler, but even I, having been through the homeschooling process, don’t have all the answers. Even I wondered where and how to begin.
I was grateful when several veteran homeschools recommended the following books to read before I jumped head first into educating my child. If you aren’t a teacher by trade, you may find yourself wondering if you are “qualified” to teach your child and if they will receive a similar education to that of public school. I tackle some of those questions in two of my other posts Debunking Myths About Homeschooling and Why We Homeschool.
These books are great for the new parent who is homeschooling. I consider them almost like a crash course in an education degree. If you don’t know what to teach your child, when, and how, these books will answer lots of questions. Here are 4 books you need to read before you homeschool.
The Well-Trained Mind
The Well-Trained Mind, has become an essential guide for homeschooling. One half of the authors is herself both a university professor and a product of homeschooling. Her co-author, her mother, was a school teacher. Together, they walk you through the fundamentals of classical education, based on the ancient model of learning. Even if you aren’t doing Classical homeschooling, I highly recommend the book for laying foundational framework in your homeschooling journey.
They offer a blueprint of learning, which includes a resource list of educational curriculum and sample routines. Even if you aren’t planning to teach in a Classical style I still think this book is an amazing resource because of it’s explanation of developmental stages and the progression of learning throughout the school years.
The Well Trained Mind is a comprehensive resource for both secular and Christian homeschoolers.
Duffy’s Top 100 Homeschool Picks
One of the first questions beginner homeschooling parents ask is how to select curriculum. There are so many choices out there all claiming to be comprehensive and complete. Even being the product of homeschooling myself, I wondered, just how do you know which curriculum is “the best.”
One of the best, most well-loved guides is Duffy’s Homeschool Picks. This is an amazing resource. I’d say the greatest benefit to homeschooling is not having a “one size fits all” approach to learning like public school. You can tailor the curriculum to fit your child’s learning style. This book is a manual for doing just that. Duffy’s Homeschool Picks gives in-depth review of well-known curriculum and provides a method for determining if it is right for your child. This has been one of the most invaluable homeschooling resources I’ve found.
Plan Your Year: Homeschool Planning For Purpose and Peace
One of the most common questions I hear from new homeschool parents is “How do I plan my homeschool year?” It’s a common question and also a common complaint. When you first start homeschooling, it can be overwhelming. It can be hard to determine how much information can be digested in a year. Perhaps you worry if you are covering all the subjects your child needs or maybe you struggle with follow through.
Pam Barnhill has written a great book that helps with all those problems. She gives real solutions for the busy parent and offers a way to plan a structured, yet flexible homeschool schedule that works with your own personality and style. This book is great for beginner and seasoned homeschoolers alike. I also think it works for just about every homeschool style (Unschooling, Eclectic, Charlotte Mason, Classical, Traditional, etc).
Teaching the Trivium
I was actually going to include this as one of the top three books. The only reason why I didn’t include it is because of the strong Christian theme. I am a Christian homeschooler, but over the last few years, secular homeschoolers are rapidly growing in the homeschooling community. So because this book so so heavily steeped in Christian influences and the fact that it is specifically geared towards Classical homeschooling, it may not be for you, but I still think it provides invaluable information.
Harvey and Laurie Bluedorn have long been considered experts in the classical homeschooling niche. Here they easily explain the trivium (the three distinct phases of childhood learning). Using biblical principles as a blueprint and basis for teaching, they combine that with the ancient teaching of Greek scholars, which make up Classical education.
There you have it 4 books you need to read before you homeschool. Homeschooling is a journey for both you and your child. You won’t have all the answers when you start. In fact, the answers may change throughout your journey – that’s okay. That’s actually the beauty of homeschooling – the incredible flexibility! Good luck to you and your kids. It’s gonna be an adventure!
Dessert is easier than ever with the super easy, no-fuss, 3-ingredient cake mix cherry cobbler.
There is nothing quite as lovely as a homemade dessert. But after cooking dinner, I’m not always in the mood for getting back in the kitchen for dessert. Certainly, you can make dessert in advance, but busy days don’t always allow for that! Thats why I love this cake mix cherry cobbler!
This cobbler is pretty famous in my family. My sister-in-law has been making it for nearly two decades and it is always a favorite of ours. Lots of request it in lieu of cake for our birthdays.
Prep in Less Than 10 Minutes
This dessert is super easy to make. Ready for the best part? It takes just 3 ingredients! All you’re going to use is cherry pie filling, a ordinary box of cake mix, and a stick of cold butter.
I’ve been asked several times in the past if you can use other pie fillings. Absolutely! I’ve done this with blackberry, apple, and peach. Its always amazing and wonderful. So by all means, switch it up!
Serving & Storing
Cake mix cherry cobbler is best served warm. You can always serve it with ice cream if you desire. Frankly, I love this recipe for entertaining too. It’s such an easy thing to pop in the oven when you are busy getting ready and it’s always a crowd pleaser.
I’ve found it doesn’t need to be refrigerated. However, if you are looking to preserve the freshness a few extra days, I’d certainly recommend putting it into the fridge with a cover. In fact, I’d recommend always covering it.
Cake Mix Cherry Cobbler
Dessert night is now easy with this super easy 3-ingredient cake mix cherry cobbler. Prep time is less than 10 minutes
Make the average day special with these wacky, fun holidays to celebrate with your kids.
I’m always looking for a reason to celebrate and let’s be honest, celebrating is fun. I love getting my kids into the mix by celebrating fun holidays. I’ll be honest, most have to do with food! But a celebration wouldn’t be complete without food. Am I right?
This is a cute way to make ordinary days special for you and your littles. I’ve included some month long holidays as well as daily ones. Here are fun holidays to celebrate with your kids.
Hot Tea Month
National Hobby Month
National Soup Month
National Blood Donor Month
National Braille Literacy Month
2 – Buffet Day
2 – Science Fiction Day
4 – Trivia Day
6 – Bean Day
6 – Cuddle Up Day
8 – Bubble Bath Day
9 – Word Nerd Day
12 – Marzipan Day
14 – Organize Your Home Day
14 – Dress Up Your Pet Day
15 – Strawberry Ice Cream Day
17 – Benjamin Franklin Day
17 – Kids Invention Day
18 – Thesaurus Day
19 – Popcorn Day
22 – Hot Sauce Day
23 – Handwriting Day
23 – National Pie Day
25 – Opposite Day
27 – Chocolate Cake Day
29 – Puzzle Day
30 – Croissant Day
31 – Backwards Day
Black History Month
National Cherry Month
National Grapefruit Month
1 – Bubblegum Day (First Friday of the month)
2 – Groundhog Day
2 – Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day
3 – Carrot Cake Day
4 – Thank Your Mail Carrier Day
5 – Chocolate Fondue Day
7 – Send a Card to a Friend Day
9 – National Pizza Day
10 – Umbrella Day
11 – Make a Friend Day
13 – World Radio Day
14 – Ferris wheel Day
14 – Library Lovers Day
17 – Random Act of Kindness Day
19 – Chocolate Mint Day
24 – Tortilla Chip Day
26 – Tell a Fairy Tale Day
27 – International Polar Bear Day
28 – National Chili Day
Social Workers Month
National Peanut Month
Irish American Month
National Craft Month
National Nutrition Month
National Women’s History Month
1 – Peanut Butter Lovers Day
6 – Dentist’s Day
7 – Alexander Graham Bell Day
11 – Johnny Appleseed Day
12 – Girl Scout’s Day
12 – Plant a Flower Day
14 – Pi Day
14 – National Potato Chip Day
20 – International Earth Day
23 – Puppy Day
25 – Waffle Day
25 – Pecan Day
30 – National Doctors Day
31 – National Crayon Day
National Kite Month
National Poetry Month
International Guitar Month
Lawn & Garden Month
National Pecan Month
8 – Zoo Lovers Day
9 – Winston Churchill Day
10 – Siblings Day
11 – Barbershop Quartet Day
12 – Grilled Cheese Day
13 – Scrabble Day
13 – Peach Cobbler Day
14 – Dolphin Day
15 – Haiku Poetry Day
22 – Jelly Bean Day
25 – Take Our Daughters and Sons to Work Day
26 – Pretzel Day
27 – Babe Ruth Day
Asian American Month
Foster Care Month
National Barbecue Month
National Hamburger Month
National Salad Month
Pacific Islander Heritage Month
National Bike Month
National Photograph Month
1 – Batman Day
1 – May Day
1 – Mother Goose Day
2 – Baby Day
3 – No Pants Day
3 – Space Day
4 – Herb Day
4 – Star Wars Day
5 – Cinco De Mayo
6 – National Nurses Day
8 – National School Nurse Day
10 – Clean Up Your Room Day
11 – Astronomy Day
11 – National Train Day
12 – Limerick Day
14 – Dance Like a Chicken Day
15 – Chocolate Chip Day
21 – Talk Like Yoda Day
24 – Scavenger Hunt Day
28 – Hamburger Day
31 – Macaroon Day
1 – Say Something Nice Day
4 – National Cheese Day
6 – Drive In Movie Day
6 – National Yo-yo Day
7 – National Donut Day
8 – Best Friend Day
9 – Donald Duck Day
10 – Iced Tea Day
11 – Corn on the Cob Day
12 – Red Rose Day
15 – World Juggling Day
18 – International Picnic Day
21- National Selfie Day
22 – Onion Ring Day
23 – National Pink Day
26 – Chocolate Pudding Day
27 – Helen Keller Day
29 – Camera Day
National Blueberry Month
National Hot Dog Month
National Ice Cream Month
1 – International Joke Day
7 – Build a Scarecrow Day
7 – Chocolate Day
9 – Sugar Cookie Day
15 – Gummi Worm Day
20 – Space Exploration Day
21 – Ice Cream Day
21 – Junk Food Day
23 – Vanilla Ice Cream Day
24 – Cousins Day
26 – Uncle & Aunt Day
28 – Milk Chocolate Day
29 – Lasagna Day
30 – National Cheesecake Day
Family Fun Month
National Golf Month
National Picnic Month
2 – Ice Cream Sandwich Day
3 – Watermelon Day
4 – Friendship Day (first Sunday in August)
4 – Sister’s Day
9 – Book Lovers Day
10 – National S’mores Day
11 – Son & Daughters Day
12 – Middle Child Days
13 – Left Handers Day
16 – Tell a Joke Day
17 – Thrift Shop Day
19 – World Photo Day
22 – Be an Angel Day
26 – Dog Appreciation Day
30 – Frankenstein Day
Classical Music Month
National Piano Month
Hispanic Heritage Month
Little League Month
National Sewing Month
5 – Cheese Pizza Day
6 – Read a Book Day
7 – Salami Day
9 – Teddy Bear Day
11 – Make Your Bed Day
12 – Chocolate Milkshake Day
15 – Make a Hat Day
16 – Guacamole Day
17 – International Country Music Day
17 – Constitution Day
18 – Rice Krispie Treat Day
19 – National Gymnastics Day
19 – International Talk Like a Pirate Day
21 – Miniature Golf Day
21 – International Peace Day
23 – Checkers Day
24 – Punctuation Day
25 – Comic Book Day
26 – Love Note Day
27 – Native American Day
28 – Good Neighbor Day
30 – Hot Mulled Cider Day
Computer Learning Month
National Pizza Month
1 – International Coffee Day
4 – World Smile Day
4 – Taco Day
5 – Card Making Day
5 – Do Something Nice Day
6 – Ocktoberfest
6 – Mad Hatter Day
16 – Dictionary Day
18 – Chocolate Cupcake Day
25 – World Pasta Day
30 – Candy Corn Day
31 – Magic Day
Native American Heritage Month
National Adoption Awareness Month
Aviation History Month
Peanut Butter Lovers Month
1 – Author’s Day
3 – Sandwich Day
4 – King Tut Day
8 – Tongue Twister Day
10 – Vanilla Cupcake Day
11 – Origami Day
13 – World Kindness Day
14 – Pickle Day
16 – Fast Food Day
17 – Homemade Bread Day
23 – National Adoption Day
26 – Cake Day
28 – French Toast Day
29 – Square Dance Day
Write a Friend Month
1 – Eat a Red Apple Day
2 – Fritters Day
3 – Make a Gift Day
7 – Letter Writing Day
9 – Christmas Card Day
10 – Dewey Decimal System Day
12 – Gingerbread House Day
14 – Monkey Day
17 – Wright Brothers Day
20 – Ugly Sweater Day
24 – Eggnog Day
28 – Card Playing Day
Looking For More Ideas
Are you looking for more fun holidays and ways to celebrate with your kids? Take a look at some of my holiday / seasonal bucket lists.
Looking for a new way to spend some spiritual quiet time? Try these Christian journal prompts to help explore your Christian walk.
Hello friend. I hope you’re having an awesome day. Today, I’m sharing some Christian journal prompts that I hope will help you fine tune your relationship with Christ. These are some of the topics I’ve written about in my own journal this past year.
I like to think of Christian journal prompts as a personal assessment about your spiritual life. So many times we are just trodding along not even realizing they we are off track somewhere. Using these journal prompts help me to stop and evaluate just where I am on my spiritual walk.
I will add one disclosure though. The Bible should be your guide through this. My degree is in Psychology and journaling can often be associated with that because Psychology is all about finding answers within yourself. But that isn’t what I’m promoting. I’m asking you to listen for God’s voice with scripture as your guide. Personally, I like to pray before I do spiritual journaling. Ask God to reveal His will for your life and ask Him to impart wisdom. If you enjoy this post, you may also enjoy my post, Bible Study Journal Prompts which is more scripture focused.
Christian Journal Prompts
Describe a time in your life where God has rescued you. Do you believe He’ll do it again?
Write a scripture that brings you peace. What is God saying to you?
Describe a time where you believed God spoke to you.
Write a prayer of surrender to God.
How can you be bold and courageous for the Lord.
Be still. What is God telling you now?
How can you serve God better?
How can you be a light to others in a dark world?
Describe a time when God used a bad situation for your good.
What do you feel God is asking you to change?
What do you imagine heaven will be like?
When do you feel most distant from God?
How are you hurting others with your pride?
Ecclesiastes tells us there is a season for everything. What season are you in right now?
Write out the lyrics of a Christian song or hymn that brings you joy.
Write a scripture that brings you joy. How can you apply it to your life?
Describe a blessing that happened this week.
Write a Psalm of worship to God.
Do you find it hard to apologize? If so, why?
The bible specifically speaks of joy, not happiness. In what way are they different?
Are you self-righteous about something? What can you do about it?
What are the character attributes you think a Christian should have?
When you get offended by something how does your pride react?
Pick a bible character. What can we learn from his/her life?
What do you need to confess to God?
Write a letter of forgiveness to an enemy.
Is there something that you haven’t forgiven yourself for? How can you receive the healing of the Lord?
Write 5 scripture verses that make you feel strong and courageous.
What does forgiveness look like?
If you are struggling though something, what do you think God wants to you to learn?
List all the needs God is currently meeting.
What do you love most about your church family?
What does God say about pride (see the scriptures)?
Describe someone in your life who exemplifies humility.
What are your God-given gifts and talents? How can you use them to advance the Kingdom?
Who or what do you need to forgive?
Before You Go
Don’t forget to PIN this post for later. Also, take a look at some of my other scripture related posts.
Are you struggling to manage your stress levels? There are ways to help you manage it properly. Here are 10 Healthy Ways to Cope With Stress.
Pressure has a way of finding us. It doesn’t matter if you are working or not – in fact, being out of work can actually be quite stressful. Throughout life, we will be forced to endure stressful times and situations. But there is a way to way to manage it on your own. Here are 10 healthy ways to help cope with stress.
In my twenties, I was working 60-hour work weeks at an already stressful job. It really began to take a toll on me. I ended up having a nervous breakdown and when I discussed it with my therapist he asked me who was to blame. “Well, my company of course. They force me to work all these hours.” But as he pointed out the fault was mine for not having set boundaries. In a sense, I never said “no.” I just kept taking whatever crap they threw at me. We decide when enough is enough.
Boundaries clearly set how much of something (or someone) you will tolerate. Boundaries are essential to staying healthy. They keep you honest about your limits and they stop toxic people from having intimate access to your life and your emotions.
It’s a shame, but sometimes you need to set boundaries on people too. I don’t think people always mean to be toxic, but there are people out there who are overly critical, jealous, and petty. People who are constantly overstepping their welcome in your life. For these bullies, you need to set some serious concrete boundaries. You’re in control of who you let in your life. It may mean cutting someone out of your life or at least an area of your life. You don’t need to apologize for it. Choose peace. Learn to say “no.”
Arts & Crafts
Arts and crafts is probably my way of relieving stress but it is for many others as well. Art can be used as a form of free expression where emotions might be displayed. But it is also simply a way to relax. Art often has repetitiveness like brush strokes (painting), scribbling, making loops (crocheting/knitting). Repetitiveness can be relaxing.
Don’t worry. I hear some of you. Some of you might not think you’re creative and that doing art actually causes stress when it doesn’t look the way you want. Even if you aren’t artistic, something soothing like adult color books may be helpful.
In my youth, I loved using exercise as an outlet for stress. I know lots of people who prefer running for getting out stress or anxiety. For me, I loved kickboxing style aerobics. There was nothing more therapeutic to me that pretend to beat the crap out of something! Yoga was always a great way to feel centered and balanced again. I found it particularly relaxing to hear my own breath.
I remember there were times that doing it by myself was very relaxing, but I also recall that sometimes, doing it with a group was also a stress-buster. We sit afterwards and talk and that was always a nice way to finish that time. When you’re stressed go beat up a punching bag or pound some pavement. That can sometimes help.
As I write this, it is Texas summertime with temperatures reaching over 100 degrees. And while I think braving the excessive heat can be depressing, I still think that being outside can reduce stress. I love to wake up before my kids and sit on my porch with a cup of coffee. I sit there and watch the sun come up and pray over my family. It’s refreshing to be outdoors.
There is something therapeutic about being outdoors. It doesn’t have to be long. Just a few minutes can be refreshing. You may not realize it, but being cooped up indoors can add to stress. Enjoy some tea on a porch, take a walk, go to a beach, take a camping trip, but spend sometime getting reacquainted with the sunlight and air. The change of scenery will do you some good.
I think journaling will always be one of my main ways of coping with stress. We are emotional creatures. Part of growing up is learning self-control over emotions, but as adults we either have adult sized tantrums or we pendulum swing over to bottling them up entirely. Really we need to process those emotions and get them out, just in a healthy way.
That’s why I recommend journaling. It’s non-destructive and yet it still allows you to say what you’re really feeling. More often than not, journaling has also helped me explore and figure out what I’m feeling. I’m always a little surprised when unknown feelings, fears, and thoughts begin to surface. I’ve learned a lot about myself!
I know there are a lot of people out there who hate to write. I understand, but I still encourage you to give it a try. Although, keeping a paper journal is custom, these days, there are so many electronic alternatives. I personally love the Day One app. It’s available on the App Store for both devices and computers.
If you need some inspiration to get started, take a look at some of my journaling prompts.
This might be a new concept, especially if you aren’t a journal junkie, like me, but I chose to include it separately from journaling because I think it holds a lot of merit. Something that has always helped me, is letter writing. This is similar to journaling in that you will be writing out your thoughts – just in a different way,
Instead of writing to yourself, write to whatever or whomever is upsetting you. Haven’t you ever wanted to tell someone off? There’s always the same problem with doing that – consequences. You always risk permanently severing the relationship or situation if you do. So in this instance you’ll be writing it for your own benefit. Sometimes what causes stress is simply the bottling up of emotions.
Use paper or type it out. Tell off whatever or whomever is upsetting you. Don’t hold back. Tell them how you really feel. Rip them a new one! Get it all out. Then you can do one of two things: destroy the letter or mail it to “God” via the post office.
Talk to Someone
Talking something out can be incredibly helpful and therapeutic. It can give us an opportunity to hear some of our thoughts out loud. I’m an avid advocate for professional therapy (duh, my degree is in Psychology), but it’s because I think it is incredibly helpful to talk things out. You hear yourself express feelings you might not have realized were there and you get constructive feedback.
I would caution you. Confidants should be chosen wisely. Some close people in your life, may not be the best ones from which to seek advice. I have two criteria for choosing a listening friend: they have to be able to listen to me (hearing me out and constructive feedback) and they have to have their own shit together. Yes, I cursed. I did that on purpose. That’s because everybody has shit in their life – the muddy, icky crap that is hard to clean up and deal with. But some people are doing a great job at handling it. Don’t go to someone whose own life is a screw up. You don’t want their advice.
Good places to start? A trusted elder, a pastor, a professional counselor, a parent, a sibling, a close friend. Nobody has it all together, but go to someone who has some semblance of it, someone who will impart wisdom.
Hug It Out
As human beings we were designed to be loved through touch. When moms and babies hold one another, pheromones are actually released. The same is true for adults. Ocytocin is released thereby reducing blood pressure.
Sometimes, when I am an stressed I have to recalibrate my human touch experience. Stop and ask yourself. “How long has it been since I cuddled with someone?” Or maybe even more specifically, “how long has it been since someone cuddled with me.?” That may sound sappy and saccharine, but what you’re looking for is meaningful touch.
The human touch can be powerful. If you don’t have someone to hug it out with, I strongly recommend getting a massage. Massage isn’t just about applying pressure, it’s about receiving human touch which in turn, relieves tension in muscles.
Positive Self Talk
Can we be honest for a second? We stress ourselves out a lot of the time. Meaning we have a habit of predicting catastrophe in our lives even though it may be without any merit.
We may find ourselves fantasizing and worrying over things which may never happen. We might be overly critical with our performance or hold ourselves to overly rigorous standards or ideals. Perhaps, we may be pursing perfectionism and give ourselves little grace. In short, we may be adding to our own stress. This is where we need to recalibrate our own actions.
Here is what I mean when I say positive self-talk
Imagining / role playing the positive outcome
Telling yourself to remain calm
Telling yourself things will work out
Focusing on gratitude
Nix harsh self-criticism and self-doubt
Spend time in prayer or calming meditation
Pray or Meditate
Prayer or meditation can be a great way of relieving stress. Prayer can be a way of practicing both meditation and talking it out. I recommend also spending some moments in silence and breathing in and out deeply. Give yourself permission to set your troubles aside for a moment and relax.
I know some people are weary of meditation because of racing thoughts. When I first started to practice meditation, I found myself struggling to focus. My mind would get distracted and go off on mental tangents. That is where guided meditation can help. These days there are apps and websites that can help you focus by listening to someone else’s voice instead of your own.
Storms Don’t Last
I think it’s very important to remember that storms don’t last. Stressful times don’t last either. Eventually something will change the status quo and ease the tension. If you find you’re struggling to manage it on your own, there is no shame in seeking out professional help.
Thanks for reading, 10 Healthy Ways to Cope With Stress. Before you go, share or pin this post and please subscribe to my blog.
As a new parent, we never truly know what to expect. We aren’t always sure what our little one will need. Here are 10 things you don’t need on your baby registry.
This post contains affiliate links. Should you make a purchase through one of the links I provide, I may receive a small percentage at no cost to you.
I can still recall the excitement of starting my baby registry! I was thrilled to start planning as soon as I found out we were having a baby. But as a new parent, I had no idea what I actually needed. Babies need so much and stores our out to sell you as much as possible. But there are definitely things babies don’t need. At least, you don’t need to actually put them on your baby registry. So today, I’m sharing 10 things you don’t need on your baby registry.
Some of these things sound like a good idea. But honestly, you might find yourself doing without them. Some of them aren’t practical, while others just don’t get used very often. Regardless, if you’re looking to trim down your registry, these are probably things you won’t miss.
10 Things You Don’t Need On Your Baby Registry
I admit, I had one of these. I used to for nearly the entire time my first son was in diapers. But let me tell you that these things aren’t worth it. First, you have to buy the warmer and the pads that go inside. These pads act almost like a sponge. You keep it saturated with water to keep the wipes from drying out. The result is supposed to be a nice warm wipe for your baby’s tushy. It’s a nice idea.
In Real Life:
It’s cold before it reaches your baby’s sweet rump
The expensive pads need to be changed often
You have to constantly add water to keep them from drying out
Your child isn’t used to cold wipes when you are out of the house
It can get mildew or mold
I remember building my baby registry and adding several sets of towels. Yes, they are very soft and so it makes us feel to good to protect baby’s skin, right? After all, babies have sensitive skin. I used them fairly religiously for the first month or so. But as time progressed, I ended up using what was at hand and convenient. The caveat is that I still recommend getting baby wash cloths. That matters if you are worried about baby’s skin. But the bath towels really make no difference.
In Real Life
You’ll end up using regular towels that are nearby
They outgrow the towels very quickly
Most are very thin and not very absorbent
Bottle Drying Rack
The bottle drying rack, a place to hang dry all the nipples, couplings, and bottles. It seems like a great idea and it is. But can I just be honest? I rarely used mine. First, more often than not, I ended up putting my bottles and accessories in the dishwasher. The dishwasher basket below was way more helpful. The dishwasher is easy! Furthermore, it washes the bottles with scalding hot water ensuring the bottles get well cleaned. I just the bottles and accessories in the top shelf. Even when I hand washed, the rack was rarely used.
In Real Life
You use things that are more convenient like a drying mat or dishwasher
It becomes a fixed fixture on your counter and looks like a bunch of clutter
It doesn’t really lessen the time it takes to drip dry
Okay, I know I’m gonna ruffle some feathers here. Now before I go any further, let me tell you I’m pro-walker. There are a lot of people who will tell you they are unsafe. I’m not one of them and I won’t get into that here. My son has a clubfoot and was in boots and bar for the first year of his life. We put him in the walker a lot to strengthen his legs. It has really helped him catch up on his walking. However, this post is about what you don’t NEED. I’m going to tell you right now, your baby doesn’t need a walker. Children didn’t use them for centuries and it’s a totally modern invention.
In Real Life
All children learn to walk organically by crawling and pulling themselves up to stand
Children can have accidents if mommy uses it as a babysitter
They’re bulky and take up a lot of room
Your child may hate it!
It’s true. I recall buying a few pairs with my first son. After all, those tiny little shoes are just so adorable! But in real life, they don’t serve much purpose.
While we are at it, you actually don’t need to put any clothes on your baby registry. First, stores turn over clothing stock very quickly. I found it became unavailable on a registry before my shower approached. The second reason is because people actually buy you clothes without having to ask. It’s true. Ask women to shop for a baby shower and they can’t resist clothes. They won’t buy the ones on your registry anyway. They’ll buy the cute clothes they personally see, so don’t worry about putting it on your registry.
In Real Life
Your child will likely prefer being barefoot until they are close to walking (usually around one).
They’ll be in socks and constantly skip the shoes
A Changing Table
Don’t misunderstand me. You absolutely need a place to change your baby. But when I was pregnant, I assumed I needed a changing table. You don’t. You just need a surface to change your baby and that lots of places can be utilized for that. I ended up just using a dresser. I simply put the changing pad on top. When we were done with the diaper stage, it just became a dresser again.
In Real Life
You’ll use a bed, sofa and any other soft surface at hand. You don’t need a whole extra piece of furniture.
You can use a standard dresser and just put the changing pad on top
Baby Bath Products
Yes, your baby will need his or her own bath stuff. But let me be strait with you. Here is something I never knew until I became a mom. Your baby’s skin will react to all kinds of products! I don’t care if it is specially formulated for babies or if it says hypo-allergenic on the label. The truth of it is your baby’s skin will be unpredictable to fragrance, dyes, and other irritants.
In Real Life
You will likely have to do a lot of testing, trying, and searching for the right products. Don’t worry about necessarily adding it your registry.
Your best bet will be Free and Clear detergents. Skip Dreft.
Baby Bedding Sets
When I was pregnant with my first son, I was shocked to learn that there were actual bedding sets with quilts, pillows, bumpers, etc. All of those things pose a SIDS risk to your baby. You should keep the crib free from excess bedding and stuffed animals. So don’t worry about the costly baby beddings sets.
In Real Life
All you need is a fitted crib sheet and waterproof mattress cover.
Opt for a wearable blanket or sleep sack instead
As you’ve probably seen in stores, they sell little infant hats to help your little one regulate their body temperature. There are lots of ways to keep your baby warm and a hat isn’t super necessary. But here is the thing, all hospitals send you home with one and frankly, I never found that I really needed anything more than that. In fact, both my boys hated having it on. They preferred being kept warm in other ways like swaddles and long sleeves.
In Real Life
The hospital will give you one
Your baby likely won’t care for it
Ask any of your moms and grandmothers and they will swear by a mobile. It’s true that babies love mobiles. It gives them something to focus on and babble to in the crib, which in turn helps them goo-goo their way to dreamland. But mobiles are becoming less popular due to the strangulation risk they pose. At least, that’s how I felt, when my oldest son managed to pull his down. I never put it back up and neither of my sons seemed to miss it.
In Real Life
You can use other safe things to help your baby sleep like black out curtains and white noise makers.
They can be dangerous if they aren’t secure.
Here is my last disclaimer. You’re the mama. These are just my opinions. No one should judge you if you end up buying these things and find them helpful. Every mama is different and you’ll find the things that help you on your mom journey. I hope you have a happy and safe pregnancy. Good luck, mama!
Thats it! 10 things you don’t need on your baby registry.
Don’t forget to check out my Baby Registry Checklist. I’ve even included a FREE printable checklist to help get you started. Also, don’t forget to PIN this post for later and subscribe to my blog before leaving.
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Is your little one hating bath time? Mine did too at first. Here are a few tips for how to help your newborn enjoy bath time.
Both my boys learned to enjoy bath time, but they didn’t initially love it. Maybe it’s because they were both preterm babies. I think we tend to underestimate how scary it can be for our little ones to find themselves submerged in water, cold, with somebody scrubbing them.
Bathing my youngest had added challenges because as a newborn my clubfoot baby was often either in foot taping or a plaster cast. He hated being bathed, but the small little tricks I’m about to show you helped him enjoy bath time.
I’ve found there are three main reasons babies may dislike bath time.
They’re too cold
The water is too hot
They are insecure
I certainly don’t have all the answers, but I’m going to share what helped us and maybe it will show you how to help your newborn enjoy bath time.
Tools of the Trade
Swaddling / Receiving blanket
A soft wash cloth
Your favorite gentle bath soap
Warm Things Up
The first thing I recommend doing is by closing all the doors in and around your bathroom. Set up a small space heater on the floor or adjacent counter top. Allow the room to warm up from 10-15 minutes while you prepare other things. Babies equate warmth with security, so the goal is to keep them as warm as possible.
Lay Out Clothes
Consider where you’ll be taking your baby directly after his or her bath. For me, I bathed them in my master bathroom, so I would immediately take them to a changing table on my dresser. I recommend laying out clothes in advance. Get their little outfit out and ready so you can lessen the time they will be naked or cold.
Additionally, lay a hooded towel directly near the baby bathtub for a quick transfer.
Prepare the Bath
Two to four inches of water is all you need. Babies have extra sensitive skin. Dyes and fragrances can sometimes irritate baby’s skin and may contribute to eczema. If this is the case, try opting for a natural fragrance-free, dye free soap. We loved Aveeno.
Pro-tip: Always test the temperature of the water with your elbow. It should feel warm, but not hot.
If water is too hot you can add cool water. Just make sure to swirl it around to eliminate any hot spots.
Undress your baby. Once naked, swaddle in a receiving blanket. Put your baby in the water with the swaddle. The swaddling blanket will not only keep baby warm, but will also make him or her feel more secure.
Always start by washing their face first while the water and cloth is still clean. I liked to think of it as a massage with a towel. I dip it in the warm water and slowly wipe their little eyes and nose like a gentle massage. Save shampooing the hair for last. (I’ve got a great way of doing it) Don’t forget to wash the neck well as milk tends to collect in the skin folds.
Continue washing your baby downward from head to toes. Remove one limb from the swaddle at a time so the rest of the body stays warm while you wash. Frequently pour warm water over baby with a cup to keep him or her from getting cold. Take care to clean well in the folds of skin.
Take your baby out of the tub and quickly transfer to a dry hooded towel. Swaddle your baby tightly to keep him or her warm. Put your baby in a football hold with one arm using your non-dominant arm. Support their head with your hand. Using a football hold will make your baby feel more secure when water is going over his or her head. Shampoo your baby’s head over the tub. Use a washcloth or soft brush to gently exfoliate baby’s head to reduce chances of cradle cap. Pour clean warm water over baby’s head while continuing to cradle. When done, cover baby’s head with the hood of the towel and gently massage hair dry.
Dry your baby well while still in the warm environment. Once dry, consider applying baby oil or rehydrating their skin to help reduce eczema or flaky skin. Make sure they are nice and toasty for a while after their bath, by putting them in warmer clothes (like long sleeves). Babies enjoy bath time a lot more if they are kept warm and secure throughout the process. This bath time only took me about 15 minutes on average.
I hope I’ve shared a few things that will make momming a little more enjoyable. Thanks for reading. Before you go, don’t forget to PIN this post for later or share it with a new mama. Also, be sure to subscribe to my blog before you go.
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Friends don’t let friends be without wifi. Save time for you and your guests by placing this Herbaceous Green Wifi Sign so your guests don’t don’t have to ask you.
Hey there, friend. Today, I’m introducing something I think will really help you. Let’s be honest, everyone looks for wifi when we are in a new spot and guests are no exception when they enter into your house.
I host a lot! You are trying to set food out and keep up with the ever ringing door bell and in the midst of it all people are asking you for your wifi password! It happens all the time. Our wifi password isn’t the easiest to remember either.
That’s why over the last few years, I’ve become a little smarter. A few years ago I created a sign that had our network name and wifi password. I put it in a cute frame and have it prominently displayed at parties near the food station. No more asking!
So today, I’m introducing you to that same sign I made now FOR SALE on my Etsy shop. The best part about it is I’ve made completely editable. That’s right. If you buy it now, you’ll be able to edit it yourself FOREVER! Buy it once and never again. If you move or if your network name or password changes, you’ll have forever access to edit it again and reprint it at home. How awesome is that?
If you purchase it, it you’ll get access to two sizes:
You can print it off at a home computer or you can email it a local print shop or photo center to print for you. You’ll also be able to choose from additional fonts.