Must Have Essentials For Staying In A Hotel With A Baby

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Must Have Essentials For Staying In A Hotel With A Baby

A few weeks ago I headed to Seattle with my 2 month old for a conference and a few weeks before that we stayed in a hotel in Palm Springs for spring break. During both of these trips we stayed at a hotel and I picked up some great tips on staying in a hotel with a baby.

You really don’t have to pack everything and the kitchen sink when traveling with baby however you do need some essentials to make life easier. Things like diapers, wipes, etc can be purchased at your destination but other things are easier to bring along.

Must Have Essentials For Staying In A Hotel With A Baby

1. Portable Toys

When travelling you don’t need to bring the whole playroom but a few essential toys are a must. We like to stick with a soft ball – the o-ball rattle is our baby’s favorite, soft books or board books, and something that moves (like this caterpillar).

2. A Waterproof Pad

Since you won’t have a changing station at the hotel, a waterproof pad you can use as your changing station helps a lot with diaper changes. No need to worry about baby leaving a little mess on the hotel bed or chair. And you can clean up any mess on the mat with a baby wipe (those things clean up ANYTHING!). 

3. Bottle and Accessories

I’ve found that most times I travel, I am not travelling alone with baby. And that means that sometimes mama needs a night out. Travelling wiht a good bottle, like the Joovy Boob, and accessories like the new Nood nippes and a bottle brush with some dishwashing liquid is needed for bottle feeding. Since I am breastfeeding I also like to take along a manual pump instead of lugging around my electric pump. 

The best thing about the Nood is that it mimics the feel of the breast and helps achieve a perfect latch just like on the boob. That way the transition from boob to Nood is a smooth one. 

4. Medicine

One thing I almost forgot was our medicine cabinet. I kid, I didn’t bring the whole medicine cabinet. Just a few essentials including infant acetaminophen, saline spray (for runny noses), a nose bulb (you could also pack a Nose Frida), gripe water and some diaper rash cream. All of this fit into a sandwich size zip top bag easy for pulling out at the airport. 

5. Inflatable Tub

Now you may only be staying overnight at a hotel one night but if you’re staying any longer, sometimes an inflatable tub for baby makes bathtime a LOT easier! We have packed along our small inflatable tub before and the kids love it. We also pack along one of their own hooded towels for after bathtime. They’re a lot softer than the hotel’s towels and work as dual purpose for the pool and tub.

What are your hotel must-haves when traveling with baby?


Avengers: Age of Ultron – Date Night OR Family Night?

Avengers Age Of Ultron

It is time for the big summer movies and Avengers: Age of Ultron does not dissappoint, so grab your favorite date or huge Marvel comic fan and sit down for entertaining 2 and 1/2 hour adventure.

This movie is a good blend of fast paced action, humor, and special effects. The premise is that Ultron was created by Tony Stark (Iron Man) assisted by Bruce Banner (the Hulk) to protect the world from bad guys thus making the Avenger’s jobs easier or not needed. Like only a computer mind can do it figures out the best way to protect imperfect humans is for them to evolve.

Marvel's Avengers: Age Of Ultron..Conceptual Artwork..?Marvel 2015

Unfortunately Ultron’s plans to spur a new race of humans is a global cleansing of the existing gene pool. So our heros cross the globe hunting down the robotic villian Ultron who is assisted by two twins that have been inhanced with special powers and his many robotic copies.

Its enjoyable when a movie’s characters have a good repore on sceen. These scenes lend themselves to some good humorous moments, like when each hero takes a turn attempting to lift’s Thor’s hammer and his reaction when it budges. Further the movie avoids some of the cookie cutter patterns when the movie sets up one of heros as a family man we are not subjected to watching him sacrifice himself later. The character of Ultron is very interesting on screen and his vocal work was very well done.

Avengers Age Of Ultron Thor and Captain America

This movie is a fun one to share with a date. You will both laugh and enjoy the action. If bringing children the movie was rated PG-13, so it is most likely too intense, in my opinion, for anyone under 10 years old. It also has a little profanity that some parents may not care to have their children hear.

Also? Stay until after the credits… you’ll thank me later!

Check this clip for a great sneak peek:

Will you be seeing Avengers: Age of Ultron this weekend? Already saw it? What did you think?

This post written by my husband, Joseph Simmons.

Going Beyond I Love You This Mother’s Day

This post is brought to you by CafeMom and Hallmark. 

Going Beyond I Love You This Mother's Day

Often I’m reminded of the fact that I don’t have the relationship I thought I’d have with my mother. The image I had in my head of what was to be of our relationship once the whole mothering thing was out of the way. The vision of a good friend who I’d run to with anything and everything, or the person I’d chit chat with about nothing at all over a cup of coffee or glass of wine after a long day. Someone who I could regularly see whenever I needed or wanted to. I guess we never got to build on our relationship after the “I hate you” phase of my teens.

Big spoiler: I never really hated her. Surprise, surprise.

But with her moving shortly after I graduated high school, I grew into adulthood with her being a plane ride away instead of a car ride away. And it was a bit different than me going off to college somewhere else since the home I knew wasn’t the home she was living in. Visiting her didn’t seem like “coming home” because her new house was never my house.

Going Beyond I Love You With Mom

All of this doesn’t negate the fact that I love my mom. And that I love what she’s done to ensure that I’m the woman I am today. Sure, we don’t have the friendship that I see others have with their moms. And of course I can’t just drive over and drop my kids off at her home while I go out and do errands or call her for coffee whenever I please.

But I can still go to her if I need advice. And my kids will always have a grandma who loves them and will do anything for them.

Going Beyond I Love You - Grandma Meets Granddaughter

Beyond “I love you” is a bond that will never truly be gone even if there’s distance between us. And as Mother’s Day approaches I’m reminded of what my mom has given me outside of a close relationship. She’s taught me to become a strong, independent woman. Who can grow and blossom as a mother myself because I had such a good role model.

She gave me the opportunity to figure things out for myself and not be dependent on her. To realize what and who I wanted to be without any outside influence. And to achieve the goals I set for myself. Or change them along the way into new goals.

And she’s showed me, perhaps without even knowing it, who I want to be as a mother to my own children.

Going Beyond I Love You and putting pen to paper

This Mother’s Day I plan on going beyond I love you. Beyond sending flowers. Beyond a box of chocolate covered strawberries. Okay, maybe I’ll still do all of those things. But in addition to this, I plan to put pen to paper… er… card… and tell my mom how she’s helped me grow, evolve, and succeed in becoming a person I hope she’s proud of. Because I’m sure proud of who I am. And where I came from. And what I have today.

I can only hope that I’m half the mother to my children that she was to me. And that they know how much I love them, and how much I’d do for them, when they’re older. Because it’s more than I love you.

How will you go beyond I Love You this Mother’s Day?

How To Tame The Mane: Curly Hair Tips for Kids

I participated in an Ambassador Program on behalf of Influence Central for SoCozy. I received Target gift cards to facilitate my review and thank me for my participation.

How To Tame The Mane Curly Hair Tips for Kids

This girl. She’s full of, spunk, sass, and always on the go. She’s also blessed with a curly mane of hair that has been the source of our arguements every single morning. Until we found the right tools to take care of her hair.

Learning how to properly care for my kids hair is important to me because I want them to know how to properly care for themselves as they get older. Even with this girl that is always on the go, I can find time in the morning to tame her mane with a few simple tools.

Curly Hair Tips for Kids - get a good leave in conditioner and detangler

Curly Hair Tips for Kids

1. Find the right brush – one of my biggest tools in the morning to ensure no tears when we take care of my daughter’s curly locks is our Wet Brush. Not only does it ease the pulling and distress my daughter’s knots and tangles bring, it also feels great in my hand and in hers. That means she can brush her own hair some mornings when I’m still getting lunches packed.

2. Use a good conditioner – in the bathtub the night before I always make sure that my daughter uses a shampoo + conditioner so that her hair is ready for the brushing after her bath and again in the morning. Keeping her hair conditioned and well cared for also makes her curls look better when her hair dries.

3. Don’t skip the detangler – we cannot even go near my daugther’s tangles and curls in the morning without a detangler. And I’m SO excited to have found the SoCozy detangler because it also has leave-in conditioner included as well. That means her hair stays smooth and soft AND the curls look great even when we haven’t just given her a bath.

How To Tame The Mane Curly Hair Tips for Kids - get a wet brush

SoCozy salon quality hair products for children are now being sold at Target. I was able to find our new detangler and the 3 in 1 shampoo + conditioner + wash on the shelves at our local Target in the Beauty section.

Not only did they have these two products I picked up but they also carried the Boo! Lice Prevention Shampoo and Spray. I know exactly where to go when I get the next letter home from my son’s school about a lice outbreak (is your skin crawling?).

We’ll be using our new SoCozy over the next few weeks and can’t wait to share how they work for our family (and yes – my son will be using these as well!). Not only do we need something for my daugther’s hair but for my son’s hair as well.

SoCozy Products in Target

SoCozy is currently running a contest and would love for you to join in on the fun! The contest taking place from 3/23 – 4/30. You can enter here:

What’s your morning hair care routine?

Making A Smooth Transition From Two To Three Kids

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This post featuring how we’re making a smooth transition from two to three kids is sponsored by Graco®

Making A Smooth Transition From Two To Three Kids

After having our second child we thought we were done having kids. Two was the perfect amount and we were blessed to have both a boy and a girl. But once my daughter hit age 3, the yearning for another little one hit hard. And after a LOT of discussions we decided to try for number 3.

Since the arrival of our little Norah we’ve learned a lot about making a smooth transition from two to three kids. We’re learning new things about the big kids, learning new things about ourselves, and, of course, learning new things about the newest addition to our family.  [Read more…]

5 Tips for Making Date Night a Priority

5 Tips for Making Date Night a Priority

Are you a couple who keeps pushing date night further and further into the calendar? It’s important for couples to have that time alone. Instead of putting it on the backburner, use these tips to make date night a priority.

Date night doesn’t have to take a back seat and these tips are living proof! Take the time to make your spouse feel wanted and loved by taking them out on a date at least once a month. There’s proof that shows that couples who take the time to date their mate, have a better chance at staying married.

Whether your job, the kids, or time has taken over your date night, reclaim the fun that you once had with your spouse by making date night a priority! [Read more…]

Great Tips for Gardening With Kids

Gardening with Kids

We’re starting to plan what we’re going to plant in our raised bed for spring right now and can’t wait to get our hands dirty. One of the best parts about gardening, for me, is the fact that the kids get involved in every step from planning, planting, and growing.

Over the years of gardening with them I’ve come to find that gardening with kids isn’t as hard as it sounds. In fact, it can be quite fun! The bonding we do over our garden has deepend our relationship and has acted as a teaching tool for life lessons.

Below are some great tips for gardening with kids that you can use if you’re just starting or have been gardening with your kids for a while.  [Read more…]

5 Things to Do On Valentine’s Day For Your Kids

5 Things to Do On Valentine's Day For Your Kids

Valentine’s Day is a fun time for couples to show their love for each other. However, when you have kids, it can be a little tricky to teach them about what Valentine’s Day means without all the gushy mushy stuff.

I thought I’d take some time to talk about some fun things you can do for your kids this Valentine’s Day to make it extra special for them!

With a new baby due any day now (we’re about 2.5 weeks away from the due date) I wanted to think ahead and figure out easy ways to make this holiday special for the older ones.  [Read more…]

San Diego Restaurant Week is Here – September 21 – 26, 2014 | The Oceanaire Seafood Room Review

San Diego Restaurant Week - Oceanaire Seafood Room Review

San Diego Restaurant Week is one of our favorite weeks of the year. Not only do we get to step outside of our normal eateries and try something new but we also get to choose what we want to try based on our budget that week.

At the beginning of the year I attended a preview of San Diego Restaurant Week to enjoy bites from a few different places but this year I was asked to head out to a restaurant to enjoy their restaurant week menu a week early.

I was excited to try a new-to-me restaurant, The Oceanaire Seafood Room in Downtown San Diego, and had a fabulous date night with my husband while enjoying delicious food.  [Read more…]

Easy Dinner Ideas On The Grill

This shop featuring easy dinner ideas on the grill has been compensated by #CollectiveBias, Inc. and its advertiser. All opinions are mine alone. #MyGoodLife

Easy Dinner Ideas On The Grill

The official end of summer is near and the unofficial end of summer has arrived. While I’m sad to see our summertime fun and memories fade, I’m excited that we’ll still have some warm days upon us to continue using our grill instead of heating up the house inside.

Over this past summer I’ve come to realize that you can grill just about anything. And that includes pizza! Not only is it the perfect way to get a crisp, delicious crust, it evenly cooks all of the toppings so no one is left with a doughy bite.

But pizza isn’t the only thing you can put on the grill… I’ve also started grilling up some desserts and even salad if you can believe it. These easy dinner ideas on the grill are not only simple to make but quick to cook up! This whole meal took less than 15 minutes from start to finish.  [Read more…]

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