Thursday, October 23, 2014

Wine With Friends - Defining My Happy

I'm so excited to kick of my guest post series, Wine With Friends, with my friend Jen of Defining My Happy. I met Jen through a SITS Tribe building group and I'm so happy I did. Jen is one of those people that is instantly relatable and likable. The type of person that I know I would love to share a glass of wine with if she didn't live half way across the country. So please give Jen a big welcome and show her some social media love by liking her Facebook Page.

Alternately titled, The Crazy Things My Toddler & Preschooler Do that Sometimes Drive Me Crazy.

I've seen the zany commercials of cute tykes running around causing large-scale mayhem. Heck, I live it. It happens in my house on the daily. Lately though, we've come across a new breed of children-new to us, that is. One minute, they're sweet as usual and the next they're picky or demanding. Child Psychologists will tell you that this is the prime age for children learning to assert their preferences and gain independence. I totally get that and all, but the details get a little fuzzy when these 30 something pound kids start barking out orders at me like miniature angry soldiers.

So I compiled a warning  list for all of the innocents: Parents who have not yet reached the Toddler/Preschool Years, Parents to be (God help you) and people that have friends with kids (RUN MAN! RUN!)


1.) The Picky Eater- Crustless sandwiches, all sauces on the side, nothing on plate can touch anything else on plate, must eat with certain plate/bowl/silverware/special cup and refuses "broken" food. (Beware of crumbly muffins)

2.) Sugar Fiends- Beware of well-intentioned neighbors, friends and grandparents on the prowl to "spoil." You can literally see Landon's eyes powering up and wigging out. 

3.) No, You Get It

L: "Mom, get my cup."

Me: "L, it's right next to you."

L: "No mom, you get my cup! PLEAAAASSSEEE"

Me: "Landon, it's literally right there."

L: (Falls dramatically to floor) "MOM!!"

<End Scene>

4.) The "Why" Phase

Example: I thought it'd be fun to do a post on toddlerisms today.
Because it's relatable and amusing.
It just is, okay!?

5.) The Jedi-Mind Trick

When, "I don't want a peanut butter and jelly sandwich" really means, "You will make me a turkey sandwich instead and I will have a small meltdown and yell that no, I wanted a PB&J."


"I will walk next to you in the store" really means, "I will dart away as soon as we get into the store, leaving you scrambling by the cart corral. Good luck!"

6.) I'll Have What You're Having

The most important toddlerism of all. No matter what you are eating, drinking or messing with, it will never truly be yours. Not for long anyway. Even if you set your toddler up with the same food/drink/item, they will almost always say, "No I want yours." 

(Don't bother trying to switch. They'll end up with that one too)

This must be practice for the teenage years.

Despite all of the craziness, life wouldn't be the same without these munchkins.

Any you can add to the list?

Jen is a twenty-something married, boy mom. Her blog is an ode to the triumphs and comical tragedies of living life in the mama circus. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

Want to be apart of Wine With Friends? Send me an email, cheers!

Holiday Giveaway! From Vtech and We're Parents

Welcome to the VTECH
Holiday Toy Giveaway
Hosted by: We're Parents!?
Sponsored by: VTech

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We're here to make your Holiday Shopping a little easier this year by offering ONE lucky reader a chance to win these FOUR fabulous toys from VTECH! Valued at over $130, it's the perfect way to get your shopping started (or finished if your an early bird!).  All four of these toys are recommended for 12 months to 36 months and are perfect learning and educational toys with VTECH's high quality! These toys would look fabulous under the tree or as a special treat for the little boys or girls in your life. Win it now and gift it later!

Here's what one person will win:
  • Chomp & Count Dino™
  • Sit-to-Stand Smart Cruiser™
  • Grow-Along Music Center™
  • Smart Shots Sports Center™.   
VTech Chomp & Count Dino (Ages 12-36 months, MSRP: $19.99)
  • Your child will learn about colors, numbers, and food with the adorable new Chomp & Count Dino. 
VTech Sit-to-Stand Smart Cruiser (Ages 6-36 months, MSRP: $39.99)
  • This 2-in-1 toy grows with your children and transforms from a floor play toy with detachable steering wheel activity panel to an exciting toy.
VTech Grow-Along Music Center (Ages 12-36 months, MSRP: $29.99)
  • Your children can pretend to be musicians and sing along to the music with the Grow-Along Music Center.
VTech Smart Shots Sports Center (Ages 12-36 months, MSRP: $39.99)
  • You can cheer on your little sports stars with the Smart Shots Sports Center. This electronic sports center features a soccer goal and basketball hoop for a fun 2-in-1 experience.
Larisha from We're Parents!? had the opportunity to review the products herself and you can read her full review here.

Stay connected with VTECH
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BUY IT!  You can purchase the toys mentioned at many retailers or directly from by clicking on the links below!

Ready for the giveaway? One lucky reader is going to win all of the toys listed above! 
Giveaway is open to US residents ages 18+ and ends on 11/5/14 at 11:59PM EST. One entry per person/household/IP address.
Enter using the simple Giveaway Tools from below. Good luck!

Disclosure: We're Parents!? received the product free of charge in exchange for this review/giveaway. We're Parents!? and the blogs participating are not responsible for prize fulfillment/shipment. We were not compensated in any way for the promotion of this giveaway. Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and any other social media are not affiliated with this giveaway. If you have any questions please contact the host of this giveaway at 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

The Big Boy Bed

There we were in his bedroom, rearranging furniture and making room for the big boy bed. I could not believe that this day had come and yet I knew it was time. We moved the crib to the corner of his room, and pushed the rocker aside. I stared at that bed, that bed that surely he would look so small in.

He came bounding up the stairs a ball of excitement. "Can I see my bed? Can I help ?" So we put the new Toy Story sheets on and carefully arranged his covers.

"Mom, I need all my crib friends", he said. As he pulled his stuffies one by one from the crib. "And some new friends" he said as he ran downstairs to get more stuffed animals.

big boy bed

And the hubs and I stared at each other in disbelief. Was this really happening? Was our little guy who was so reluctant to leave his crib just a few months ago, now excited for his big boy bed.

It was time. And time always has a way of coming too quickly or sneaking up on you unexpectedly. It taps you on the shoulder and shows you all the ways it has changed things.

John glanced at the babyish cars and boats that hung above the bed. "Those look so out of place with the big boy bed", he said.

I agreed, picking up his Monsters Inc wall art, "I had thought we would put this over the bed".
And in the span of that sentence, the pictures were down and the last bits of babyhood had been swept away.

And I thought of all the times I had watched him sleep, in that crib and how I had carefully picked out all the details of that room. The little nautical theme that I loved.

transition to big boy bed

 I thought of when we lowered the crib and I could barely reach to get him out. I thought of that night he fell out and how I wasn't ready to let go of the crib. I thought about how he slept in that crib for 2 more years than I thought he would.

I felt the way my arms ached as I lifted him in and out each day. I felt so safe knowing he was secure and comfortable in his crib. And he felt safe there too. I remembered him telling me he loved his crib and I remembered the night we tried to convert it only having to put it back together because he cried so much. I thought about how he doesn't like change and wondered how the night would be.

Jack bounded back into the room with a new pile of friends and I watched as he carefully arranged them along the bed. And I remembered when he didn't sleep with stuffed animals or a pillow or even his blankie. When he was just a little guy swaddled up with his fist next to is face.

"Mom, I need my nightstand so I can put water on it and my noise machine". I moved the nightstand and plugged in the noise machine and remembered that some small things stay the same. That the noise machine that soothed my colicky infant was still a comfort nearly 4 years later.

We settled onto his bed for story time. I glanced at the rocker, well worn from long nights when he was a baby and well loved as our usual story time seat, well I guess you are next to go old friend.

And with that one chapter of bedtime routine came to a close and another began. And I realize now that this morning I didn't think it would be my last morning taking him out of the crib and last night I didn't realize it would be the last time I tucked him into his crib. That something I had done hundreds of times was now so abruptly over.

Big boy bed

And I want to remember this moment, when he goes off to college or moves away. This little transition. I want to remember that I was sad but not so sad. I want to remember the way John worried about him falling out of bed. I want to remember his excitement and pride. I want to remember that he didn't look so little in that bed, that he was so much more grown up than I realized. I want to remember that it all goes so fast and that time will again sneak up on me. I want to remember that he was once so little and is now so big.