The Joys of Staying Home!

BabyLegs Lucky Lady legwarmers

Lucky Lady Legwarmers

There are days when I question my sanity and my decision to be a stay at home mom. Let’s be honest, toddlers are no joke!

My daughter is almost 2 and I feel that this age is very fun because she is so curious! However, it is also an age where most children discover the art of screaming and throwing tantrums when you say ,”No you can’t have candy.” or something as simple as ”Wait a minute, I can only do so many things at once!” As I sit here writing this blog, I think about the future PTA meetings I’ll be attending and future ballet practices I’ll be driving her to and honestly, it makes me feel great that I will be able to do that!

But then reality hits me in the face – or was that mashed potatoes that my toddler threw because she decided it’s time to play with her food instead of eat it? This is the life of being home with a toddler. Messy hair, food all over your clothes and floors, toys all over the place, and your Tivo set to record every episode of Dora The Explorer or Blues Clues. I have to say, it’s challenging but I am all for it and I would definitely give it all up just to see a smile on her pretty face everyday.

Whether you decide to stay at home or return to work, being a parent is a challenge. How do you manage your life with kids?

 

Testing the Waters

PhotobucketWhen I was little, my brothers and I would spend every day swimming at a neighborhood park. It was a lake, and it was FREEZING, but we always had a ton of fun in our inner-tubes & jumping from the high-dive. My mom made sure we knew how to swim well, and it wasn’t until later that I realized that not all kids swam like we did.

My mom was a certified lifeguard for over 10 years. Over the years I have heard her tell countless stories of the horrors that can happen at a pool when no one is watching, or even when they think they are watching. I won’t go into the details but a lot of them involve moms, just like you and me, who are talking with friends and not necessarily keeping their eyes on their children. In fact, a couple of close friends of mine have had a couple of similar swimming scares as well. 

What can we do? My mom believed the best thing she could do for us to be safe was teach us to swim at an early age. My brothers Photobucketand I would take swimming lessons every day, all summer long, every year. I didn’t know that it wasn’t typical for kids my age, and it didn’t really cross my mind until I got married (one of many other previously undiscovered differences between my husband’s upbringing and mine).

We started our oldest son in lessons when he was 3. Our goal was to get him used to the water since he was a sensitive child, and hadn’t yet grown into the coordination he needed to truly swim. At age 4 he started taking lessons more regularly, could float by himself, and glide underwater. At age 5, he took off! He started swimming by himself, and we kept him in lessons as much as we could. Now at age 7, I would still never leave him unattended, but he has the basic skills down. 

PhotobucketWith both my children, it just CLICKED. Once they realized they could actually SEE things under the water with their cool goggles, they were hooked. It was getting them to that step. Then they spent half their lessons scoping out the underwater view and sneaking up on their classmates!  Learning to swim is a necessity in my home. It may be different in other homes, and that’s okay.

For me, I feel much better knowing my kids have been taught water safety in a controlled environment. They know not to go in without an adult. They know what to do if someone falls in the water. They know what it feels like to wear a life jacket. The more I can prepare them the better off they will be and I can’t think of a better way to prepare them than by giving them the opportunity to swim at an early age, in a safe environment, as often as possible (and it’s amazing what you can teach in a bathtub).

I am so grateful to my mom for the countless hours she spent with us swimming at the park (amongst a million other things my mom did for us) and I can only hope I am being a pinch of the mother she was to me, for my children. I am grateful my children have had the chance to get to know her, swim with her, and laugh & love her.


About the Blogger:

My name is Alee, and I am a stay-at-home mom to three kids. I love to make crafts, scrapbook, and help out at my kids school.

Valentine’s Day

Can you feel the love? Valentine’s Day is such a special time. I believe it is not just for couples to share their love for each other; it is for anyone, no matter how old, to show and be shown their love and appreciation for each other. When I was a child, my mom would always get each of us kids one of those chocolate boxes that have cute pictures like a bee with the notation “bee mine” on it for Valentine’s Day. We would also spend an evening filling out our special Valentine’s Day cards to hand out to classmates at school. It is a time I remember and cannot wait to share those same type of memories with my children. These days there is a lot of fun things that can be done with your kids: crafts, treats, homemade cards. Some ideas to get your kids involved:

- Take them out on a special date. Let them get dressed up and take them out to dinner. Make them feel special. To make it even more fun, present them with their very own box of chocolates and a card letting them know how much you love them. Children need to be reminded how much you love them and a day like this would likely stay in their memories forever. It can even turn into a fun tradition you share.

- Help them make some Valentine’s goodies they can share with their friends. Rice Crispies treats in the shape of hearts, cupcakes with heart shaped sprinkles, or heart shaped sugar cookies.

-Handing out Valentine’s Day cards was always the most fun for me when I was a kid. You can help your child pick them out, or get crafty and make some homemade ones. This might take awhile if they have a large class to hand them out to, but it can be a lot of fun. Just add some glue, glitter, googly eyes, tissue paper, confetti, stickers and of course, the doilies.

- Make some fun crafts with them. Hand print crafts are lots of fun. With some red paint, you can create keepsake hand prints in the shape of a heart.

- Cook  up some heart shaped pancakes for breakfast, then send them to school with a lunch filled with heart shaped goodies. You can cup up their sandwich, and some strawberries in the shape of a heart. Add some candy hearts or any other heart shaped desert to the mix. It would be a lot of fun to mix up their normal lunch with something special. If your kids arent in school yet, you can still do this for lunch!

There are so many fun things you can do with your kids to show them you love them, and to help get them involved with sharing their love with others.


About the Blogger:

My name is Natalie, I’m 26 years old, a full-time college student and a SAHM to two wonderful (and sometimes terrible!) kids. Tanner and Penelope are 18 months apart and so sweet together. I feel I got so lucky to have one of each! I became a BabyLegs addict when Tanner was about 5 months old. Before that time I swore I’d never put my son in them, but turns out I spoke too soon! They are adorable on both boys and girls!

Fall is Perfect for Layering: Boys Fashion Guide

So, I’m going to come right out and say it.  Boy fashion rarely changes from year to year.  I know!  It upsets me, too!  I have been dressing my little boy for five years, and some of the fashions that he was rocking as a tiny baby are some of the same looks that he will be seen in today.  I have heard moms mope over the fact that dressing a little boy is not as fun as dressing a little girl, and while I have to agree (boys don’t generally wear hair clips and dresses and skirts, which have the tendency to mix up a gal’s wardrobe a bit), I also would like to put it “out there” that dressing your little boy does not have to be boring.

Checking out some of the current trends for boys, I am seeing a lot of the same things I saw last fall, which is good news for the pocketbook—provided he still fits into some of his older things.  Fall still means dark colors like blacks, browns, navy, army green, and reds.  But a lot of what I have seen sort of tends toward an “outdoorsy” kind of look, with layering built in to the outfit to accommodate any kind of weather.

In jackets, I have seen a bunch of military-inspired looks.  Military jackets with lots of pockets are a great option for the cooler days of fall.  I have also seen corduroy pilot jackets, which would look awesome with some aviator sunglasses leftover from summer.  Down vests are also a great option for fall, because they not only add a layer of warmth, but can showcase some of the great top options that are out there.

In shirts, I have seen short sleeves layered over long sleeves.  This look can be of the genuine variety… thermals and long sleeve tees under short sleeve tees or polos, or of the “faux” variety, with the longer sewn-in sleeve peeking out from under a shorter sleeve.  I would recommend the real thing for when the weather gets really cold, and save the faux variety for these days when it’s cooler in the morning and hotter in the afternoon.  Hooded sweatshirts and cardigan sweaters are more great options for a layer that is easy to take off later in the day.  If you’re looking for some totally on-trend designs, look for plenty of monsters, rock and roll, skulls and outdoor themes, and look no further than BabyLegs for all of those!  Use a pair of BabyLegs as arm warmers to create that longer sleeve under shorter sleeve look.  Or wear a pair over the sleeves of a long sleeve t-shirt or thermal to add a touch of style.  If the weather heats up or cools off, kids can take them off or put them on.  Babylegs are the perfect accessory for fall outfits!

Looking to dress up his look a bit?  One of my favorite looks is a button-up shirt left untucked and made polished with the addition of a tie.  We add a pair of jeans, a wool pea coat, and clean sneakers to finish off the look.

In the realm of pants, he can’t go wrong with corduroys, khakis, or dark rinse jeans in plain front, carpenter and cargo styles.  Almost any color works for fall, including khaki, navy, black, and army green.  Mix up the colors he wears on top and bottom, and tie them together with the addition of funky socks.  You can pull an outfit together using his striped BabyLegs socks for inspiration!

Another really fun look that starts in fall and runs through winter is a hat.  There are the outdoor, fleece variety that will be seen in the shapes of animals and dinosaurs, as well as the traditional knit hat in stripes and solids.  He might want to even bring the outdoors in by wearing a knit hat with a brim, a newsboy cap in herringbone twill or velvet, or even a fedora!  Underneath the cap, boys hairstyles are trending toward that Justin Beiber-ish tousled look, but longer, sloppier, and more surfer- or skater-cool.

For shoes, be on the lookout for casual silhouettes that include boat shoes, deck shoes, sneakers that look like hiking boots, and canvas slip-ons.  Dressy styles are tending toward that same shiny, tie up look, as well as the shinier leather slip-ons.  Boots are a big trend this year, and come in myriad styles.  Sneakers are seen in skater styles, with bold stripes on the sides and in high top form.  When wearing the high tops, the high part is being rolled down to expose the inside, or if the shoe has a long tongue, the tongue is pulled out to cover the laces.

Bottom line for fall: In kid’s fashion, it is hard to go wrong.  You can freely experiment with mixing colors and patterns and prints from head to toe.  And if the finished look ends up a little crazy, you can always say that he put it together himself.  Layer it on, and get out there to enjoy the cool, refreshing temperatures this fall!


About the blogger:

Hi everyone!  My name is Jen, and I have a passion for fashion!  I live in super-sunny/super-cloudy Ohio, and have a son AND a daughter, which creates the perfect storm for Babylegs addiction.  I hope that you find the perfect pair of Babylegs to complement your little one’s fashions this season, and that you FALL in love with Babylegs like we have.  icon smile Fall is for Fashionistas