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    Chiropractor Mama Dr. Dolly and professional photographer Elisa B. share about adventures in intentional and natural parenting while living in Virginia's beautiful Blue Ridge.
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Look What I Found!

On my shopping list, I specifically added turn cuff socks and underwear for my son.  I’ve been doing laundry every other day due to mishaps involved with potty training…6 pair are NOT enough.

Unfortunately, I have been less than impressed with the durability of his other cotton underwear that were a gift…brands found in a local big box store.

While trying to figure out better options for durable and cute boy’s underwear, I saw a HUGE sign at our local Old Navy – Kids and Babies Sale! Perfect!  It was worth a look, anyway.

While scouring through the turn cuff socks, I scored a 10 pack of gray, navy, and white socks on sale for…get this…$10.

Then, I saw them.

The cutest little boy’s underwear featuring his favorite things: trucks and dinosaurs.

For $5.00 per set of 3.  I didn’t even realize how much they were discounted until I got home.  I’m heading back tomorrow to buy the next size.

So, when I got home and showed the new underwear to my husband, he immediately showed them to Calvin–who couldn’t wait to put them on and wanted to layer them over his existing pair.

Too bad I had to make him wait so I could wash them first.

After they were washed, I let him choose which pair he’d like to wear first.  He picked out the dinosaur pair in the center of the photo while simultaneously picking out the truck one on the upper left of the photo.

I made him narrow down his choice to one pair.  The dinos won.

We’ll see how they hold up over time compared to the big box store brands.

Get your own kids and baby goods while they last (Kids and Baby sale ends 2/18), or check online for year-round bargains for boys at Old Navy.

Subscribe // Twitter me: drdolly
*All items featured were purchased by me without compensation.

Boon Bath Fun – Review and Giveaway

Scrubble your bubble and catch water bugs.  Bath time fun just got more creative while remaining safe for little ones.

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My favorite company for safe and innovative creations for kids has just released some fun new bath toys.  Like everything Boon makes, they’re PVC-free, phthalate-free, and BPA-free.  So, if one of those whimsical and brightly colored pieces of plastic ends up in your kids mouth, you won’t have to worry about any of the associated health risks that have been linked to other not-so-safe plastic baby toys on the market.

scrubbleScrubble is a fun way to introduce bath time hygiene.  These squishy, squirty, and texturized toys squirt water.  My son loves it when I squeeze out water on him.  He’s learning to squeeze the scrubbles which helps with  his developing motor control.  They unscrew to mix and match the interconnecting pieces and allow for easy cleaning.

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feedingob_saucerfood01The Saucer Stay-put divided plate is my son’s favorite mealtime plate.  Read my recent Saucer review and why I prefer it over many other options on the market.  Saucer is available in white with orange accent or pink accent.

waterbugsWater Bugs glide across the water.  The included mesh net makes it fun to catch them or any other floating bath toys.  This is another great bath time toy that encourages motor coordination.  This toy is recommended for ages 9+ months.

splatSplat is another fun and colorful bath game from Boon.  A floating post beckons little ones to toss the rings around it.  This one is definitely more advanced hand-eye coordination, but even babies as young as 9+ months can enjoy this innovative bath toy.

*WIN IT*

Ultimate Blog Party 2009

As part of the festivities at the Ultimate Blog Party 2009, Boon has teamed up with Traveling with Baby to give away four of their latest products.  Four randomly drawn winners will each take home their choice of a Saucer (retail value $5.99), Scrubble (retail value $9.99), Water Bugs (retail value $7.99), or Splat ($7.99).  (retail value $50) from Boon.  You can earn up to six entries to win your favorite item from Boon!

Please follow directions.  Ineligible entries will be removed.

1. To enter, visit Boon’s site for innovations for modern parents.  Come back here and leave a comment about which Boon giveaway item you’d love to win and for whom.

2. Earn a second entry by blogging about the giveaway and linking to Traveling with Baby using “Boon Bath Fun Giveaway” as the title in your blog’s post.  Then, leave a comment with a link to your post.  Non-bloggers can participate by e-mailing a link to this contest to 5 friends, and carbon copy me (drgarnecki at gmail dot com).

3. Earn a third entry by subscribing to Traveling with Baby.  Leave a comment saying “subscribed” with the e-mail address you used.

4. Follow me on twitter (drdolly) and tweet about this contest.  Leave a comment saying you tweeted and follow me.

5. Earn a fourth entry by subscribing to Boon’s e-mail list.  Leave a comment with the e-mail address you used.

6. Enter my other Ultimate Blog Party 2009 giveaway for See Kai Run/Smaller toddler and baby shoes.  Leave a comment “entered See Kai Run giveaway.”

Leave a valid e-mail address, so I can contact you to claim your prize, or it’ll go to another amazing person.  This contest is open to U.S. and Canada shipping addresses only.  Sorry to those of you who live across the pond.

This contest runs until 11:59PM (EST) on March 31, 2009.

One winner will be randomly selected (via random.org) and announced on this post and e-mailed sometime shortly after March 31st. If a winner doesn’t respond within 72 hours, a new winner will be selected.

UPDATE

Winners have been drawn and e-mailed.

Three Little Women and a Baby

We returned home from Pennsylvania later than we’d expected Wednesday night.  In fact, we got home just in time for Calvin’s bedtime.  After being strapped to a car seat for almost 8 hours, we needed to give the little guy time to run around wreaking havoc on his toys (a.k.a. claiming his territory).  Calvin traveled like a trooper, but he definitely needed some cuddle time and stretch breaks along the way.

My favorite stop, other than the naked Homewrecker at Moe’s was the Virginia Welcome Center.  Not only does it have a statue of Thomas Jefferson and a flatscreen TV with the live weather forecast, but it actually had child/toddler friendly toilets in the women’s room!  Parents in the throws of potty training with your little ones, take note.  Whenever possible, stop at one of VA’s state welcome centers.  You’ll be glad you did!  Calvin happily did his thing, and I happily gave him hugs, kisses, and a fresh diaper.

Potty training is cool when we’re at home and we’re in a routine.  It totally goes awry when we’re out and about on errands.  Cal and I spent over 2 hours today runnin’ around from store to store in the truck.  Before we headed home, I changed his diaper on the tailgate of the pick-up in the parking lot.  No potty there, so I just put on a clean diaper.

As soon as we got in the truck and stuck in 5 o’clock traffic on Highway 29 South, Calvin started screaming his head off.  He’d pretty much been crying all day long, and I knew he wasn’t feeling well, but we were in a truck–in traffic–and aside from giving him various toys to play with (which he immediately threw with full force) there wasn’t anything else I could do to help him.  So, I did what any good mother would do, I turned up the volume on the radio and tuned out the top-of-his-lungs cries.  I had no idea what was wrong aside from the fact that he didn’t want to be in his seat and he wanted me to hold him, but neither of those were options until we got home.  As soon as we exited the bypass for home, he stopped crying.  Complete silence.  Then, he started giggling.  I was baffled, but glad he was suddenly in a great mood.

As soon as we got home, I realized what had happened: his diaper was completely full.  He had wanted to go potty, but wasn’t given the opportunity.  He had been crying in desperation to sit on the potty, and when he finally got it out of his system, he was good to go.  This is the child that will wake up from a nap and start crying because he wants me to put him on the potty.  Lesson learned: the next time I’m about to get entrenched in rush hour traffic, first, find a potty SOMEWHERE, and give Calvin the chance to go.

It was hard to read what my son wanted/needed today because if he wasn’t napping or nursing, he was crying.  He desperately wanted to be held at all times during the day.  If I put him on the floor for even an instant, he got fire-alarm-red-mad.  Such a strange response from a boy who is usually content to play by himself for 30 or 45 minutes at a time for several times during a typical day.  Was he unusually clingy because he’s still teething? [runny nose, red cheeks, and enough drool to fill a gallon jug]  Or was he having separation anxiety because he was suffering from attention withdrawel?

Over the past week, Calvin had been getting more attention from people than most Hollywood stars.  Wherever we went, he was at the center of the spotlight receiving smiles, laughs, hugs, and kisses from EVERYONE.  He had friends and relatives tending to his every need.  Want to walk around the store/house/funeral parlor/cemetary?  Ten-year-old Maddie was there in a heartbeat carrying him around and entertaining him with such love and tenderness.  Not far behind Maddie, two-and-a-half Livia was there patting Calvin on the head, feeding him snacks or offering him his toys.  I even left him in the church nursery with his Aunt Vicky and Cousin Emily during church.  Em said she kept him entertained by keeping his gaze.

Calvin ate up the attention and adored his lovely cousins.  Whenever they were with him, the looked like little mommies-in-training.  My favorite moment over the week was at the lunch after the funeral.  Calvin sat in his high chair enjoying turkey and green beans.  Soon enough, he was surrounded by Emily, Maddie, and Livia who handed him food, laughed with him, and totally provided his dining entertainment.  After all that adoration, of course it’s so anti-climatic to return home and spend all day with just me.

Forget lunchtime laughs and giggles–I was just happy to get him his meals on time.  Between wiping his ever-running nose and changing my shirts (a.k.a. my son’s giant tissue), I tried to comfort my son and unpack and do basic chores that had been neglected all week.  Well, doing dishes and laundry were NOT okay with my son.  He wanted me all to himself every minute of the day.  By the time his naptimes rolled around, I kept chugging away at the chores, but I was spent.  I took those moments to sit down and relax.

I miss those three little women.  They’re love and attention for Calvin was a glorious blessing last week, and I wish they could hang out with him every day!

Milestones

Calvin turns 7 months next Friday.

On May 22nd, he crawled for the first time. *sniff*  He’s growing up so fast!  I got choked up when he actually pulled himself forward (instead of pushing himself in reverse).  I gave him a hug, then he made a funny sound and started straining.  Then, I just had to laugh and quickly plop him on his potty.  He has a way of drawing me back to reality when I get sappy.  So now, I have to keep him in plain sight if he’s on the floor, or else he’s up to no good before too long!

Speaking of the potty, in the past few days, we’ve noticed that he actually waits for us to put him on it before passing a bowel movement.  I can’t believe it.  He actually prefers his potty.

My sister’s 12-month-old is pretty much potty-trained.  He lets her know if he needs to go to the bathroom.  He’s already wearing underwear, and they only diaper him at night.  I hope Calvin will be on the same track by 1 year, if not sooner.

I think Calvin’s teething again.  He’s drooling like crazy, sleeps a ton more than usual, and he’s got red spots on his cheeks.  Last two times those events happened, he got teeth.  Before I know it, he’ll have graduated from school, married, and have kids of his own.

Jet Setters

Calvin has fun on the potty . . . I think mostly because he gets a LOT of attention from us when he does go in it. As in the photo above, he is full of giggles and smiles (and drools) when he’s on his potty.

Even though we JUST got back from a long road trip to and from sunny Florida, we leave tomorrow morning for the other corner of the United States, Washington. We’ll spend just over a week there so many of my relatives have a chance to meet Calvin. Even though he won’t remember his first trip in a jet and a prop plane, hopefully the photos of him with family members will be cherished by Calvin in the future.

Since we’re not going to have a lot of extra packing weight to deal with, we’re going with disposables instead of cloth for this trip. I hope to be able to do diaper changes at airports, because I can’t imagine having enough space to change my long legged baby boy on an in-flight latrine. Also, I plan to nurse him on take-off and descent to help prevent ear pain from the altitude changes.

I recently read in Domino magazine a few tips for the trendy and savvy traveler on airlines. It was obvious that the author wasn’t a parent of a young child nor super concerned with saving money. As a result, I’m going to post my own traveling with baby tips with a series of a couple of posts (some will be from my lessons learned after a long day of travel with a 5 month-old).

Packing:

It used to be easy to pack a fairly large wheeled suitcase to the max with everything the 2 of us needed for a trip. With reduced luggage weight restrictions (now 50 lbs. instead of 80 lbs. back in 2002), packing with fewer bags is essentially not an option.

One day, we’ll be able to get sturdy, lighter weight luggage that can hold a lot . . . until then, it’s duffle bags, military issue helmet bags, and backpacks.

Diaper bag: I’d recommend a spare t-shirt for mom & dad since turbulence can make baby more motion sickness prone than a car . . . and who wants to smell and look like baby spit-up for a 13 hour sortie? Along those lines, I’d also recommend several bibs and spit up cloths and microfleece towels to boot, along with at least 4 changes of clothes for baby (onesies and pants seem to go further than single pajama outfits).

I’d also recommend minimal toys for the younger baby. One plush, multi purpose toy (built in rattle sounds, pulls and it jiggles, etc.) as well as at least 1 hard plastic toy for those who are teething (plastic rings . . . perfecta!). Need to distract baby during flight? That’s what those in flight mags are for. . . colorful pictures and you can make up your own story to go along with the Skymall photos . . . time for creative storytelling on your part!

Since Calvin’s teething, we’re also bringing along Hyland’s Teething Tablets. Also, when Calvin gets gassy, he gets MAD! To soothe him, us, and those traveling within ear shot (the entire cabin), it won’t hurt to bring a 1 oz. vial of the Bubble-B-Gone gas drops by Nature’s Answer.

For my travel ease, I always travel with a zip up sweatshirt which not only helps with nursing, but it keeps me warm in the snowy cold jet cabins. Also, I ALWAYS take spare undies, hairbrush, toothbrush, and deodorant. With those, I’m prepared for lay-overs, cancellations, luggage loss, and just long days on the road.

As an inexpensive alternative to the pricey captive audience booksellers in airports, I went to the local library to pick up a paperback read that I’ve been wanting to flip through since grad school. My pick, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference by Malcolm Gladwell.

For all of you traveling with a baby in the near future, I wish you happy and safe travels!

Potty Training

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    Yesterday, Calvin used his potty 6 times. Not bad for a 3 1/2 month old. We sat him on it after we took off a wet diaper for the majority of the day. I’d tried to put him on it in the past in the evening, but he just got irritated with it. Since he’s happiest in the morning and early afternoon, I figured that’s the best time to start working with him. He laughed, talked up a storm, and smiled at me while we waited for him to go.
    He only went once or twice in his potty today since he was a little cranky (not enough nap time). But, he, we’re just goin’ with the flow (no pun intended). I hope for him to eventually be able to sign to me when he needs to go, and eventually grow to be independent from a diaper.
    I love that this Baby Wunder Deluxe potty is clear. So, I don’t have to lift him off the pot to see whether or not he’s done his business. It’s the same shape as the popular Baby Bjorn little potty version (all their models are opaque plastic).
    You can get your Baby Wunder Deluxe at the EC Store for less than $20. You can also read about elimination communication in The Diaper-Free Baby: The Natural Toilet Training Alternative.This book definitely helped us get started with confidence.