Saturday, October 29, 2011

Vroom Vroom

One thing that many people ask me is "what do you kids play with in the hotel?". Well I have to admit its made me more creative! But you would be surprised how easy everyday items can be used to entertain a child. My go to item... painter's tape. This stuff is amazing for traveling. Here is one of the examples of how I use it... I make race tracks! I also took one of the thick paper bags with handles that is in the room and cut up to make a little parking garage, ramp and car wash. I used the handles of the bag for the sponges. I normally let London decorate the outer part with crayons/markers but he didn't want to today so we have a little more bland of a look.

Thanks to the help of the kleenex box for the ramp support and a couple cars/trains we bring with us you have a car table that entertains for hours!

Friday, October 28, 2011


If you haven't heard of it you need to! is hands down my best motivator and idea maker.  Pinterest is a site that basically lets you "pin" things on to "cork board". I have several boards ranging from kids activities, fashion, food, house ideas, travel, etc. You can make as many boards as you want. Next you add the "pin it" button onto your web-browser so when ever you see something you like or may want to do or even want to show someone you can just pin it to a board. You can search for anything you want and find other people's boards/ideas pinned on that topic. You can add friends and follow what they are pinning. Many people just re-pin other peoples finds. I have a ton of other mommy friends linked so I get many wonderful and creative ideas from what they are pinning. Currently the only thing I do not like about pinterest is the fact you can't make a board private. I have a Gift board for ideas of things I would like to get friends/family and I don't want them seeing it. Hopefully that will get resolved soon.
Yes its just like making a bookmark on your computer, but this one I can log into anywhere in the world, plus its WAY more organized than my bookmark list is. 

Here is my pinterest page-

From here on out on my blog if I got the idea from a blogger/pinterest/etc I will make sure to link where/whom I got the idea from. But some I just come up with on my own, and those will have no link.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Great Cloth Diaper Change-Guinness book of World Records!

This one was in the making. On April 23rd, 2011 9AM PST London and I set a world record for the most cloth diapers changed at one time! Well us and 5,025 other people that is. The event was five countries and 127 locations around the world all trying to bring awareness of reusable cloth diapers. We went to the host site of All Things Diapers in Blaine, MN which is a great store and has everything a new mom needs. 2011 was just the first try though...looks like they are going to try to break it again in 2012. Good thing I just had a new baby so I will have one in diapers still. Want to join in? Check out Great Cloth Diaper Change FB Page here and their website here.
Besides talking about fluffy butt with a bunch of people I got one of my bucket list items crossed off, To be in the Guinness Book of World Records! And just a couple weeks ago I got my official certificate...

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Toys for the imagination: Painter's tape

I'm always on the lookout for great toys or games that travel well, have multiple ways of playing/use of them and most importantly sparks my child's imagination and creativity. One of our must "toys" is currently good old fashion blue painter's tape. I love the Scotch Blue Painter's Tape, unfortunately they never seem to have coupons and since I'm not a regular to Home Depot or Lowes I never can find a good sale on it. If you happen to know of any please share with me so I can stock up.  I signed up for their facebook special of a free sample but haven't received it and its not looking good at this point.

What I love about this tape is that it can be put on about any surface and not leave marks/residue. And as a bonus I use this stuff to help baby proof our locations....maybe someday when I live somewhere for more than a few weeks/months I can try the stuff out with its "real" uses like painting!

Below is a list of games I have thought of that children can play using painter's tape, some are for older children than my son, but I wanted to have a running list for when we do get there. Right now his favorite "game" with this tape is to stick it to something/anything and then pull it off....he can do this forever. Painter's tape is a must when flying because of its endless uses and portability not to mention its quiet! Must have in the air plane carry-on if you ask me. Many of the games can be made and torn down quickly so for layovers it can get a group of kids together to burn off some energy. We have had a few successful spontaneous playgroups thanks to it!

Painter's tape game/ideas:
-Homemade stickers. I just cut off pieces and draw on the tape with a marker.
-Match game. Since my son loves to match things and play with stickers I combined these two activities and used some tape to make pairs of things (stars, flowers, etc) and put them on the wall or table top. Then I rip off one and have him find the other.
-Tic Tac Toe (I use rolled up tape balls for O's and small torn pieces for X's). How to play.
-Hopscotch. How to play.
-Place the tape in side by side lines on the carpet to use as a road for their cars/trucks or even large enough for a "lap" circle they can run in.
-Place just a single strip of tap with "center line" marks on it and its the perfect size for Hotwheel cars.
-Use the tape to make big squares on the floor. Challenge your child to jump, hop, crawl into the squares. Make small squares and you can teach the child to toss rice bags/beanbags into them.
-Use the tape to make wall sayings, build a scene on the wall with tape (house), ABC's or 123's.
-Bottle cap Shuffleboard. (will need bottle caps also). How to play.

    Some other Blogs with additional ideas for painters tape:

    Did I miss some ideas? If so please share!!!

    Wednesday, March 2, 2011

    Italian Sausage vodka sauce pasta (Ben R's Recipe)

    While in New Orleans last year Troy's trainee cooked us a great dinner! So I got the recipe and recreated it....well close to it that is. You can't find pre-made vodka sauce that I made from scratch. We gave it a 4/5 stars.... Pretty good and I think would be perfect if I did the spicy Italian Sausage and added pepper flakes.

    Ben R's Italian Sausage Pasta:
    "1 box of rigatoni  pasta, 1 lb of hot italian sausage, 1 jar of Vodka Sauce (paul newman, barilla, classico), frozen peas - cut sausage into small pieces, boil the pasta, add ingredients together. If you want to get fancy, after you add the sausage into the sauce, keep the pan hot, add a half a cup of some red wine to the pan, then add that to the sauce. boom."
    Here is the vodka sauce recipe I made fro
    • 1 cup vodka
    • 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes (didn't have these but will add next time!)
    • 2 tablespoons olive oil
    • 3/4 pound prosciutto, chopped (I used the Italian sausage instead)
    • 1 large clove garlic, minced (used 3 because you really can't have to much garlic!)
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley
    • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
    • salt and pepper to taste
    • 1 (28 ounce) can roma tomatoes, with juice
    • 2 (8 ounce) cans tomato sauce
    • 1 cup heavy cream


    1. In a small bowl, combine vodka and red pepper flakes. Set aside for 1 hour.
    2. Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Saute prosciutto, garlic, parsley, basil, salt and pepper until prosciutto is evenly brown. Pour in vodka mixture, and simmer 10 minutes. Crush tomatoes, and stir in with 2 cans of tomato sauce, and 1 (8 ounce) can water. Simmer 15 minutes. Stir in 1 cup heavy cream, and cook 2 minutes. 

    Wednesday, February 23, 2011

    Elimination Communication

    "As featured on Good Morning America..... London and Angela!"
    That right people London and I got our "15 min" of youtube fame today. (ok more like 20 seconds but we will take it). The video clip that I posted on youtube when London was 5 weeks old was used as an example on Good Morning America for a segment they did on Pressures to Potty. Now as much as I love that they didn't make Elimination Communication look bad, I really didn't care for the fact that they made it sound like potty training. They didn't ask me but I don't feel any pressure at all to have him potty trained, I didn't start using elimination communication to get him potty trained. I did use cloth diapers in hopes he would get there sooner though. :)

    Elimination Communication, EC, isn't about potty training, its not about catching pee/poop, its a natural, non-coercive, its goal is not to be potty trained....its goal is to successfully have communication between baby and parent about baby's elimination needs.  Noticing your child is trying to tell you something they want and you are helping fulfill that need. Its the same as noticing a kid making a licking their lips or rooting as communicating with you they are hungry. Yawning or rubbing their  eyes to communicate to you they are sleeping. EC is just noticing your kid is grunting/doing the wiggle circular butt move/curling their legs a certain way as telling you their need to eliminate. Then just like you give them food, putting them down for nap, you take them to the potty....they don't HAVE to drink/sleep or go potty....but often times they do.These are things a child is born to communicate with their caregivers from day one. But not one that western cultures teach caregivers to look for. I myself  found it strange at first when I was told about it while on my travels in Asia. I thought people were trying to make their kids grow up to fast and expecting way to much from them or simply it was impossible for a newborn to do, or you had to hover over you child all day/night. However once I saw it in practice and realized how that a newborn was clearly "telling" their mom they needed to go.... well once you know the cues its hard to ignore. I don't think we give newborns enough credit.

    Now I consider myself to have an EC graduate. What this means is that London successfully communicates with me when he needs to eliminate. He uses the "toilet" sign-language motion to tell me. He is working on saying potty/pee/poop as well.  This does not mean he is potty trained. A potty training graduate can remove their pants/underwear, get themselves on their potty, use the potty, wipe themselves and then get their bottoms back up. London isn't close to doing this yet. Right now he tells me he has to go and I do the rest. I'm in no rush to get him potty trained either. We just show him what we do and he tries to copy that. He can get lose underwear off by himself, he can get on his little potty chair almost correctly, he tries to wipe but usually falls when he does since he wipes from the front. He can't get his pants up  or on at all. He physically can't do some of that right now, its getting closer but we aren't there yet. 

    Here is a great website for more information if you interested- Diaper Free Baby.
    And we only did EC part-time. Never diaper free! London was in cloth diapers till he became a graduate!

    Here is the full video that got GMA attention!-