Family Friday: Performance Advanced Laundry Detergent

This is an unsexy but very necessary recommendation for laundry detergent. It’s a detergent that’s used for extra stinky clothes: workout clothes, smelly kids clothes, etc. When I had a kid, I switched to unscented, gentle detergent that did absolutely nothing to get the smell out of my husband’s and my gym clothes. Now I do a separate wash with gym clothes and my husband’s undershirts with Hex. The bottle lasts a long time because it’s made for high efficiency machines, and it works so well that I think the extra cost is justified. I’m still doing a load of baby clothes with Dreft, but I imagine that if our son takes after his father, in a few years I’ll be washing a lot of smelly boy clothing in Hex. (Related: How young can a child be taught to work a washer and dryer?) A pack of two is $24.98 at Amazon. Hex Performance Advanced Laundry Detergent

This post contains affiliate links and CorporetteMoms may earn commissions for purchases made through links in this post. For more details see here. Thank you so much for your support!


  1. For Babyproofing says:

    To the poster from yesterday who was asking about baby-proofing companies in the DC area, we used Baby Proofing Montgomery and were really happy with their service. It’s not cheap, but you can prioritize the things that are a bigger pain to install, like gates, instead of having them do everything.

    – Mama Llama

  2. Montessori school says:

    I am thinking of sending my 3 year old to Montessori school starting in September. Does anyone have any thoughts or experience with Montessori schools? So far my 3yo has been home with a nanny.

    Thanks in advance

    • Tfor22 says:

      I loved Montessori school for my son. He went for 5 years, for toddler and primary. I think it really made him a self-directed learner. Some parents pull their kid out of the last year of primary to do public K, but I recommend staying in.

    • Our son was in a regular (albeit very good) daycare until 18 months, when we moved him to a Montessori school. We chose it because it is close to our house and has a good reputation, not necessarily because I have any affinity for the Montessori teaching style, but we have been very impressed with it. It could have just been that he went through a development leap around 18 months, but he quickly learned many practical life skills, like how to clean up after himself (throw things in the trash and wipe down the table), use “please” and “thank you”, put on his own shoes, etc. I also like that all their toys are wood and they have a “natural” playground. He has a ton of plastic, loud, light up toys at home, so I feel like it provides a nice balance. They bring in a music teacher every week and also do lots of cultural lessons, as well, at no extra cost.

    • We switched from a large corporate center to Montessori closer to home around 27 months. I think my daughter responded well to increased structure and autonomy. Montessori encourages independence, so be prepared to give your child room at home to practice their skills.

    • Anonymous says:

      I really like Montessori philosophy, but there are no Montessori schools close to us. I know each school is different. I would suggest looking to see if they do the traditional three hour work cycle and at what age.

      The one thing I think you should consider though is their global/cultural/historic education can be outdated. Like, I’m okay with my kid making “Turkey” crafts at Thanksgiving, but I’ve seen Montessori classes post pictures of kids making “Indian” clothes for Thanksgiving (which, yeah, I did in the 80s, and it’s embarrassing) which I would be pretty uncomfortable with.

      That said, I find the trend of putting “teepees” in kids room to be … very concerning (like, if you bought one from a Native American artisan I’d be cool. Also I’m not sure it’s really racist, but they seem a-historical and de-contextualized in a way that adds to Native American erasure? I’m just uncomfortable.) so maybe I’m more sensitive to this stuff than other people? I would just ask to see what sort of geography/history/global cultural curriculum they use.

      • avocado says:

        I don’t know about the teepees. To me they are just play tents completely devoid of any cultural context or baggage. It’s just a cute and easily folded tent format. It’s not like they come decorated with fake Indian motifs. (The preferred term in the U.S. is currently “Indian.” I like the Canadian “First Nations” better, but whatever.)

        • Anonymous says:

          Actually, the preferred term is whatever tribe you’re talking about. Barring that, people use both. Maybe I could have said Sioux/Blackfoot/Plains tribes. You can’t use First Nations, because that’s a political designation with right and responsibilities within the Canadian governmental system. So quit be condescending.

          I already said that I’m just uncomfortable with it. And other people might not be.

      • I’ve become a lot more sensitive toward this since moving to Alaska, where there are a lot of Alaska Native peoples. Our Montessori daycare sent kiddo home with an “indian headdresses” complete with feathers for our child to wear for Thanksgiving. I’m not sure I did a great job of explaining subjugation of Native people to my 3 year old, but I tried because I was so uncomfortable with it.

      • Mama Llama says:

        This kind of stuff makes me very uncomfortable too, and I find it shocking that the kid “teepees” are so prevalent. I have no experience with Montessori, but I have seen this stuff in all kinds of kid environments from regular daycare to farm school, so I don’t think it’s necessarily a drawback of Montessori but just a problematic aspect of society in general.

        • Anonymous says:

          I tend to see it more in sort of “all natural” situations: farm schools, forest schools, Montessori etc. Places that bring in yoga instructors and talk about “whole foods” during snack time. It’s hard, because on the one hand, I’m sort of drawn to these programs. I love nature, real crafts (not like kids’ kits), I think mindfulness and yoga have real value, obviously we try to eat healthy. But as someone who grew up out West, who had a parent who worked on a reservation, I feel like there’s this incredible erasure by “well meaning” people.

          I mean, nobody’s putting a garden shed and calling it a “reading shtetl” or suggesting it would be super cute for kids to have their kids hang out in a clay brick and palm frond tata-somba.

      • Anonymous says:

        I’m with you on this. My kids are in a Montessori daycare and we have had a mostly positive experience with it. I’m sure this is context specific and not fully-true or fully-untrue of any particular school solely based on its philosophy, but I have been surprised (and offended) at how wrong our school has gotten “cultural diversity.” We’ve had a number of instances in our three years where I’ve had to bring up tokenism and erasure. We don’t have a teepee in our school, but I would definitely bring it up to the director if we did.

    • Marilla says:

      If you have a school/daycare that advertises itself as a “Reggio Emilia” school nearby, they also have a lot of the benefits of kids learning to do things independently, natural playgrounds, not tons of electronic plastic toys, etc, but with a great focus on socialization as well as independent learning and creative thinking. My kid is in a RE daycare and it could just be her teachers are particularly fantastic but I love it more than I thought I could love any daycare.

      • Anonymous says:

        I’ve never seen any daycare that has any electronic plastic toys, much less lots of them. Does that happen?

        • Yeah, my sample size is admittedly 1, but that really surprises me.

        • avocado says:

          The big chains do. At one we visited, they had “circle time” where they strapped the kids in to high chairs and made them watch the teacher play with an electronic learning toy. It was awful.

          • Anonymous says:

            I’ve had my children at a corporate daycare run by Bright Horizons and my older daughter was at a Kindercare location before that. I toured a couple other chains and church daycares in my city. I never saw anything electronic, much less lots of that.

            With small kids, they clean the hard toys with bleach each day by soaking in a solution and that really wouldn’t work if anything had batteries or was electronic.

            I’m really surprised that this would ever happen.

          • Anonymous says:

            Agree that this is surprising. I have 4 years of experience with two kids at a few different big chain daycares, and I’ve never seen any electronic plastic toys. Sometimes I wonder if people just hear rumors like this (the babies are strapped into swings all day and no one ever holds them!!) and then it gets spread around, even though there’s very little evidence it’s actually common. My friends with similarly aged children and nannies act so appalled about the notion of daycare, based on no personal experience. These are the same people who then rave about how wonderfully their kids do in preschool, which I find hilarious because my (daycare) kids have been in school since they were 4 months old. It’s not like something magical happens at age 3 with a part time preschool, or whatever.

        • Marilla says:

          Yeah, our first daycare had a squijillion plastic toys including a bunch of battery ones. Maybe I’m not phrasing it properly, but this daycare has a much smaller set of toys available, a lot more things like blocks, magnatiles, etc (what I would call “creative toys”) plus some baby dolls, and the kids seem to have way more fun with the limited toys available than they seemed to at the super well stocked daycare. The playground is also very “rustic” and kind of looks like a little mud patch, but they love it.

    • Mrs. Jones says:

      Our son went to a Montessori preschool for 2 years. He enjoyed it and learned a ton. He was well ahead of his peers when he started kindergarten.

    • Montessori school says:

      Thank you all! Another question for parents who sent their kids to Montessori- did they have a hard time fitting into regular school? Did they get bored? How was the transition?

      • Sorry for the late reply. This is from my personal experience (20+ years ago), but I was extremely bored when I made the transition to regular school. I went to Montessori school from preschool through 4th grade, and was way, way ahead of my peers (particularly in math) when I switched to a “normal” private school in 5th grade. I ended up skipping 6th grade and then was fine – and still one of the smartest kids in 7th grade, despite being a year younger.

        My kids aren’t that old yet, but they are currently in Montessori preschool and it is great! I am not sure what we will do for elementary school, as most of the Montessori schools in this area seem to end after preschool.

  3. Just wanted to say thanks to April for the earlier posts and the interesting recommendations! I really enjoyed this week.

    Question: my two year old has become completely irrational. I think it’s partly the age and partly the new baby. Like for instance this morning rather than ask for her blanket or just get it, she burst into tears. Other times, she will just sob and say mama over and over and then it feels like she comes up with a reason later (you can literally see her thinking up something). We’ve always been able to just talk to her about whatever upset her, and now it feels like just being rational isn’t really working. What do you guys do when your kid just randomly runs to you in tears saying hold me and being upset for no discernible reason? Obviously we hold her but seeking other ways to help her, too.

    • Looking forward to seeing replies to this. In about the last month, our 2.5 year old has started acting much more irrational and overreacting to things that didn’t used to phase her. We’re like you – we just offer lots of hugs and distraction. Although sometimes I’ve noticed that she recovers better on her own than if we drag it out by offering her distraction after distraction. I’m hoping it is just another phase and she gets past it soon. Hugs!!

    • mascot says:

      Embrace the (little) crazy and help by naming the feelings. It seems irrational to us because we have fully functioning limbic systems and emotional regulation. Kids are still works in progress. I’ve also found that sometimes my kid doesn’t want me to distract him and knows I can’t fix what’s wrong, but he’d like someone to sit with him in the sadness/frustration so to speak. Sometimes that means literally sitting there and sometimes that means letting him know that things are hard right now and that can’t be fixed, but it will get better. He’s 7 so he’s got the increased capacity to process things.

    • Mama Llama says:

      I think this is just what 2 year olds do. I’ve read that toddlers have hormone profiles similar to teenagers that can cause the irrational emotional roller-coaster. My friend calls it the “no-yes” phase, like where they are screaming for the blue cup and when you give it to them they throw it on the floor howling because the blue cup is the most offensive thing they’ve ever seen. Our approach was to reason when we could, comfort when we couldn’t, and just manage as best we could. Once she got a little older, we had some success with taking deep breaths, as demonstrated by Sesame Street characters in some of their online games.

      • Anonymous says:

        ^This. Chimpanzees go through puberty at about 2 years old and it seems to be a remnant of our evolution.

        1) Just keep telling yourself “Growing a brain is hard.”

        2) It’s a good preview of the teen years!

    • avocado says:

      Ever since my kid was in preschool, this type of behavior has usually been associated with a growth spurt. It is still happening at age 11. Trying to rationalize it or find out why she’s upset doesn’t usually help; instead, it sends her into a negative spiral of complaining about every tiny thing that has ever gone wrong or annoyed her over the course of her entire life. Snuggles, extra downtime, and large portions of semi-junky food seem to be most helpful.

    • Anonymous says:

      That’s just what 2 is.

    • BTanon says:

      If you haven’t tried it yet – the book “Little Monkey Calms Down,” recommended by others here, has been so helpful with my toddler. When he’s “sad and mad and angry,” even just talking about all the things that little monkey does when he’s upset in the book tends to soothe him.

      • Spirograph says:

        Yes, I bought this book based on recommendation here and really like it (and so does my now-3 year old). I also agree with Anonymous above that that’s just what 2 is.

        There’s a Daniel Tiger episode about lots of feelings at the same time, and another one about being MAD “mad. mad mad. it helps to say I’m mad!” and of course there’s the classic Mr. Rogers song, “What do you do with the mad that you feel?”

        You just give hugs and, in calmer moments, try to teach tools to deal with big feelings. When my kids are inconsolably ANGRY, not just sad, I usually walk away and tell them I’ll be there when they calm down, but hitting hurts my body and screaming hurts my ears. But if they just want a hug and aren’t kicking and flailing, I snuggle them for a bit. You do run the risk of them acting up for hugs and attention with this, long term… just throwing that out there.

  4. avocado says:

    Thanks for the useful pick today! I am currently using a hard-to-find performance detergent to get the stink out of workout clothes, and I still have to do a vinegar soak every so often. I had never heard of Hex, and it looks worth a try.

    Re. teaching kids to do laundry–I had hoped to have my 11-year-old doing her own laundry by now, but we have an HE top-loader so huge that she can’t reach the bottom even with a step stool. I am not short and am still afraid I will fall in headfirst every time I stand on tiptoe to pull things out of the bottom of the tub.

    • Mama Llama says:

      I have the same type of washer, and I am short – I have to balance on my stomach with my feet off the ground to reach the bottom of my washer! But my kid has been helping to fold and put away laundry since she was three, and she can help put it in the dryer, so at least that’s something.

    • anne-on says:

      If anyone wants a cheaper option – Washing Soda, plus vinegar, plus a small splash of ammonia and about a tablespoon (all I usually use in our HE machine) of regular detergent gets the stink out of just about anything.

    • Our building has HE front-loaders in the basement, and my son started helping put the (pre-sorted) laundry in them when he was 2! He also likes ‘helping’ to ‘fold’ and ‘put away’ his laundry. (Caution for those attempting 3yo child labor: employees tend to wander off mid-folding and typically require PIP with focus on fine motor skills.)

  5. ElisaR says:

    if experience is any guide…..I ruined a few loads of laundry in college so I would say about 19 years old is the age where you can learn to do laundry :)

    • Anonymous says:

      I started doing mine in high school when I was annoyed at not having clothes clean on the day I wanted to wear them. My mother didn’t make us do a lot of chores, but I enjoyed the control with laundry.

    • I probably started doing my own laundry in middle school – so 11 or 12ish? I got tired of my mom drying my jeans and shrinking them so they were too short and making me look (even more) uncool.

  6. Tfor22 says:

    I could use some encouragement today. One of the three people in my 3-person program (I work in higher ed) just went out on a short-term medical leave. I fully support that decision but feel bereft today. She has worked with me for 5 years. The other person is new (in a couple ways, new to our area and in a newly-created position) and out for the next few days. It was a busy and stressful time before I was suddenly alone and trying to figure out how we’ll sail the ship. And it is not like home is uncomplicated…

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Hugs. This too shall pass, and you’re stronger than you know.

      In the mean time – rally the troops behind you. Can you shed any responsibilities at home or at work? Can you ask your boss for extra PTO after this is done so you can recover and have something to be excited about?

  7. Good morning! Just searching for a reality check here–it’s completely normal that our 14 month (13 months adjusted) twins aren’t walking yet, right? Logically I know this is probably totally fine, but then I see people talk about how their kid was a super late walker and didn’t start until 13 months, etc. and part of me worries a little bit.

    They crawl (though didn’t start until 10 months), pull up, cruise, walk with a walker or holding 1 or 2 adult fingers, can stand unassisted for 30 seconds or so, so I’m assuming they’re on the right track…

    • Tfor22 says:

      Completely normal! My guy was more like 15 months.

    • Anonymous says:

      Completely normal.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      Yes. I would absolutely not worry. My daughter has always been on the slower side for gross motor development. She didn’t roll until 8 months. Didn’t pull herself up until about 10/11 months. Maybe started cruising/walking with assistance at around 13 months, and didn’t independently walk until right around 15/16 months. And she was 1 week late, so there’s no accounting for adjusted time. Now, at almost 3, she’s still very cautious, but is just fine developmentally. She’s not that kid who is throwing herself off structures.

    • Anonymous says:

      Yup totally normal! They’re actually probably just a few weeks away from it. You’ll see one day it’ll just click and they’ll start taking a few steps, and then a week later they’ll be totally walking around like crazy. My daughter just started walking at 13 months and I don’t consider it late, I consider it normal. Late would be maybe 18 months?

      • Pigpen's Mama says:

        I believe after 18 months is considered late. My LO was 15-16 months when she started walking. Like a PP’s child, she’s been on the longer end for gross motor development (later side of normal for crawling, jumping, etc.)

        Once I got past the “OMG, she’s going to be crawling to middle school!” fear, I enjoyed delaying the logistics of having a new walker.

        Another benefit, at least in her case, was when she started walking it went fairly smoothly — she didn’t have a lot of trips and falls

    • Meg Murry says:

      My oldest didn’t start walking until about 15 months – daycare had lots of push toys his peers really liked, but he chose instead to spend the playtime crawling up and down the 3 small steps they had over and over until he would collapse on the steps in exhaustion and sleep there. He also would happily pull up and cruise around a coffee table, etc, then plop back down and crawl across to the next place he could pull up and cruise some more.

      The daycare teachers told me it’s not uncommon for kids that are really proficient crawlers to walk later because they can get where they want just fine with crawling, so why bother with that slow walking stuff?

    • My full term twins didn’t walk until 13 and 14 months. Anything through 18 months is in the range of normal as I recall. My twins are 10 now, so it’s been awhile since I was up to date on normal walking range.

    • Anonymous says:

      My kid started walking literally two days before the 15 month check-up (when my ped said we’d do an “assessment” if she wasn’t walking.)

      We had put on a movie, were ignoring her and given her a long plastic straw to play with. She couldn’t crawl and carry the straw at the same time. So she taught herself to walk. (We did miss out on cute early toddler “walking.” She walked competently from day one.)

      • shortperson says:

        ha mine started walking a week before 15 months when she wanted to carry a hannukah present to me so that we could open it. she just up and walked that day with no toddling

    • Katala says:

      What – 13 months is not a late walker! #2 took steps just before his first bday and we considered that pretty early. #1 was easily 15 months before he took independent steps and it was several weeks before he was really walking. It does sound like they’re on the right track! If they seem able to, but just not taking the initiative to actually walk, my advice is they’ll do it when they feel ready. Which I know isn’t helpful, but seems true with so many things baby!

    • twinmom says:

      My twins were a month and a half early. One walked at 15 months and one a day before 18 months. They’re now close to two and a half, super strong and physically coordinated and running and climbing like maniacs. I was also freaked out by what I read, and honestly the ped didn’t make me feel much better, but they did it in their own time. I have found that prematurity really affected the development timeline for my kids until 2. Now they seem very age-appropriate. So keep an eye on things but don’t be too worried.

  8. Pee Pee, let them Pee says:

    Speaking of laundry….

    Our potty trained 3.5 year old girl is having a lot of pee accidents lately. Sometimes more than one a day and they almost seem to take her by surprise. She’s been PTed for at least 9 months, maybe longer. She did this a few months ago for a week or two — we got stricter about making sure she goes to the bathroom, but I think it gets lost in the shuffle at daycare.

    I’m thinking rules for peeing on the regular and a sticker chart for staying dry with a reward after X number of stickers.

    Any other ideas?

    • Anonymous says:

      It’s not a conscious thing. Just be compassionate and teach her how to change into dry clothes by herself, and what to do with the wet clothes. Her little brain is growing new stuff, and forgot potty stuff. This too will pass.

    • I got this from another parenting blog: train her to push all the “hidden pee” out of her belly when she goes to the bathroom. Like, “did you get it all out? make sure there’s no sneaky pee hiding in your belly.” That helped my son who I think was rushing and then getting distracted and having accidents.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Is she constipated? That can happen when a kiddo is constipated. I’d also talk to her pediatrician.

  9. Puffy stomach says:

    My kid turned 2 a few months ago and I realized my upper stomach is still… big. Like, I just look puffy and bloated all the time. I wore a flowy top yesterday and realized I actually looked pregnant in it — not something I’ve ever been sensitive to before.

    My waist is back to my pre-pregnancy size but it’s like the area around my ribcage never really returned to normal. Is this a thing? If so, what do I do about it? (Besides throwing out all of my flowy and empire-waist tops?)

    • Mrs. Jones says:

      I’m back down to pre-PG weight but my stomach doesn’t really show it. I think it’s also age-related, because I’m not young anymore.

    • mascot says:

      My ribcage expanded with pregnancy. Permanently.

      • anne-on says:

        +1. I went up a full band size after pregnancy. My ribs had nowhere to go but out and unless I wore a corset they aren’t going back down.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      I think my ribs have permanently expanded. Clothes that fit me just fine pre-preg are just a little tighter around the rib cage than they were before. I am not at my lowest pre-preg weight, but I’m in the range of what I weighed before, so they should fit okay, but they’re on the smidge of uncomfortable.

      • Preach. I just got rid of all that stuff a few weeks ago. It has been 2.5 years, so I have no hope anymore. It’s sad. Some of it was pretty nice. But it will be great for someone to have it who can actually wear it!

  10. bonkers says:

    Can someone please tell me how i can get my 2 year old to get dressed in the morning without losing my mind or being an hour late for work? We started having her sleep in the shirt she wears to daycare but she wears a pull up at night so that needs changed in the AM. Getting dressed + shoes + teeth brushing + hair brushing/pony tail is a huge battle every day. This morning I really lost my cool and I’m feeling like a crappy parent that I can’t handle getting a 2 year old dressed. I also hate that my limited time with her is spent with both of us frustrated and unhappy. Dad is usually home in the AM and struggles with it too. I feel like it shouldn’t take TWO adults to dress one toddler but that’s what ends up happening sometimes.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      A few things that we do to make things a little easier:

      — We no longer separate the morning diaper change from getting dressed. We used to get kiddo up, feed her breakfast in pjs, and then get her dressed. It was so much harder. Now it’s up, diaper off, undies/clothes on. I don’t care if her shirt gets food on it and she goes to school like that. Today she was wearing peanut butter. The only time I’ll change her clothes is if she has a massive spill on herself.

      — We don’t brush her hair. We brush her hair in the bath, and she gets a bath every few days. I don’t think her hair gets that bad in between. We also don’t bother with barrettes or trying to do her hair. We put barrettes in her school bag and tell her that she can ask her teacher if she wants it in.

      — Teeth brushing is a challenge. We take the view that the one at night is the one that matters, so we try to be a little more chill about the quality of the brushing in the morning.

      • Anonymous says:

        I’m saying this as a mom to a son with a severe peanut allergy. Please don’t send your kid to school with PB on their shirt. Having my kid accidentally ingest his allergen through playing etc. is my worst nightmare. And no judgment here. I’ve sent my kid to school in dirty shirts too. Just alerting you to the facts that allergens like peanuts, sesame, eggs etc. could be deadly to another kid. A small amount on a shirt or hands could mean a trip to the hospital or worse.

        • Anon in NYC says:

          Of course! I know for a fact that no kid in this school has peanut allergies (they allow us to send PB sandwiches). I would be a lot more sensitive to it in other situations.

        • I love this whole exchange — the kind way in which the info was given, and the open-minded way in which it was received. Cheesy, I know – just another example of why I like this place.

    • Pigpen's Mama says:

      I made a chart from clip art of everything my preschooler has to do in the morning and bedtime (get dressed, eat, teeth, shoes, hair, etc) . She can’t play or watch TV until everything is done. I’ll often redirect her, at 3, to go look at the chart to figure out what she still needs to do. She does get to watch TV when I’m going her hair if I haven’t done it while she’s eating.

      2 maybe too young for it, but maybe not.

      Also, this was pretty typical for us at 2 and even young 3 – we’re better now, but I’m always amazed at the people who can get their kids out of the house 20 minutes after the kids are up. But then, I’m a slowpoke in the morning, so she gets it naturally.

    • Meg Murry says:

      Maybe I’m a bad parent but our daycare had tooth brushing after breakfast every day so I didn’t bother with morning brushing until elementary school age.

      But yeah, I think all 2 year olds go through a stage where they are just impossible in the morning. I definitely carried a screetching, shoeless, still in pajamas (or pantsless if it was warm enough) kid into daycare more than one morning and then got them ready at daycare. Not my proudest parenting moment, but you do what you have to do.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Our daycare did toothbrushing too, and if kiddo didn’t want her hair brushed and ponytailed, then…I didn’t? We kept her hair pretty short at that age for exactly that reason. Shoes and socks are a great thing to do in the car seat.

      As far as clothing, I often got her dressed while she was zoned out in front of a cartoon. But also; mornings are often a fight, especially at that age. And that stinks. But it gets better!

    • Jeffiner says:

      Two is when I started letting my daughter zone out in front of the TV in the mornings. She would sit perfectly still and let me dress her and brush her hair as long as she could watch TV. My husband didn’t like it, but he had to admit it made mornings so much easier. Now that she’s three, we don’t turn on the TV until she’s cleaned up her breakfast plate, and she has to at least take off her pajamas herself or I turn off the TV. I still lend a hand putting her clothes on her.

      • AwayEmily says:

        We do something similar. She gets about three minutes of screen time each morning (on the actual TV), during which I do her hair and put on her socks and shoes. The screen time also serves as an incentive (as soon as you get dressed we can go downstairs and watch your Elmo).

    • I made a sparkly ribbon in my DD’s favorite color that says, “I got dressed today!” If she gets dressed willingly, then she gets to wear the ribbon. It garners lots of attention from adults, who think it’s hilarious for a 2 yo to get a prize for getting dressed. The adult attention is also good reinforcement.

  11. Anonymous says:

    We do getting dressed in front of the tv and out in shoes at daycare. (He’ll take them off in the car.)

    • Anonymous says:

      Sorry meant to say we take him to the car in socks and put his shoes on while he’s in his car seat before daycare.

  12. Anonymous says:

    I wrote a little while ago about managimg a fighty 3 year old I’m the mornings. The advice was really helpful and I wanted to say thank you to everyone! I had been getting almost everything ready before my son got up, but had been having him play while I got dressed. Switching, on the hive’s advice, to getting dressed before he gets up has been a huge improvement– it’s one less transition for him and just makes everything smoother. Now we go straight from getting his clothes on to brushing teeth together to leaving, without any play breaks. Of course this only works if he wakes at the desired wake time and not if he wakes early, but it’s still a help!! At 5 mo pregnant it’s hard to get up even an extra 5 min early but it seems to be worth it.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      On the getting up too early – do you use an OK to Wake Clock? It’s fine to tell a 3 year old, “It’s not morning until the clock turns green.” And I’ve found that kiddo usually goes back to sleep if she drifts awake and the clock isn’t green yet, so she gets more sleep.

      Glad you found an easier way!

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah, we generally wouldn’t let him get up pre- big boy bed, but often there’s a valid reason (sick, bathroom, garage door woke him and he’s sad/ missing daddy, etc.) I’m not ready to lock him in his room and don’t feel like spending energy fighting to keep him there at 6:15 am. Plus having him cry for 45 minutes doesn’t ensble a good morning at preschool. So on those days he’ll come snuggle with me or I’ll go snuggle with him, which is fine other than that he might start playing while I dress.

  13. I’m probably going to repost on Monday, but suggestions for dealing with a painfully shy toddler? Our three year old apparently does not talk at her school (she goes three days a week) except to one of the two teachers. I’m wondering if this is something we should be worried about. She plays some with other kids, but prefers to play with the one teacher. Apparently she has talked a very little bit to other kids in the class, but very little bit.

    She’s completely chatty at home and plays and talks with her younger (outgoing) brother all day long, so this was a little bit of a shock to me. I knew she was shy but I didn’t realize how much.

    I was a painfully shy kid and eventually got over it, so I realize it’s not forever. But it was still concerning to me.

    • When my DD was being shy at a new preschool, the teachers suggested that we have some of the kids over for 1:1 playdates at our house. It helped a ton to have her become better friends with at least a few of the kids in the class.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      How long has your kiddo been at this school? My kiddo is not painfully shy (quite the opposite) and I was stunned to find out that even a month after she started at her school, she was not talking to anyone but a few teachers, and then in only limited situations. I learned that she needs some time to warm up; she now acts like she owns the place.

      You know your kiddo best so feel free to ignore this, but you might actually lean into the transition a bit more – send her all five days a week, in the hope that it becomes her normal. If she isn’t crying or hiding a corner, time might just help her build the confidence to engage.

      • I feel super guilty because she’s been there a year and a half! The first year was only 2 days a week, the second is 3. She’s switching to a pre-k where she’ll go 5 days a week this summer, but with many of the same kids.

        I keep second guessing now and wondering if I should have found a school that would work with her more earlier, but honestly I didn’t realize how shy she was acting until now. It’s an informal church school and she’s never been a problem so they hadn’t told us… and her dad and I don’t do pick up or drop off – nanny does it. Ugh, so much working mom guilt right now.

        I’m excited she’s switching schools at least and I’ve heard her new teacher is great…

  14. Our oldest is like this, and frankly, DH and I are definately introverted. But she peaked in shyness at age 3.5. She went through a whole ordeal of just being too shy for…everything. stopped going dance, withdrew at school, etc.

    By the time she hit 4 she started to turn a corner and now at 4.5 it’s a huge improvement. She’s by no means an outgoing social butterfly, but she’s back into the “normal” spectrum of social interaction- she can talk to teachers and other kids, will sometimes initiate play, will generally look adults in the eye, etc.

    So…it’s a phase. But also, we made a list of some behavior we wanted to see (participate in circle time, say hi to a teacher,’be the first to say hello to a friend, etc) and she got a sticker for each one. HUGE motivator.

    • I love this. Any other suggestions for the list? I think it’s hard to monitor school stuff bc we aren’t there and she goes to a church school that only JUST now told us she was acting this way! But I’d like to reward her when we are around! And maybe she will tell us how she was at school – she’s pretty honest!

      • NewMomAnon says:

        Oh! Kiddo was having a tough time with one of her preschool friends (read: kiddo was being a mean friend and needed to a course correction), and I gave her a task of learning one new thing about this friend each day. If she reported back to me a new thing, she got a hand stamp. And if it was a thing that they had in common (love of unicorns, favorite color purple, etc), then she got TWO hand stamps. Turns out they have a lot in common. *wink*

  15. anon for this says:

    Does anyone get really dizzy/faint after pumping? I just feel so drained (pun intended) when I get up and walk back to my desk.

    Quick g00gling tells me to eat and drink more, which I probably could do. But I’m also slightly paranoid that the windowless death trap they have me in has an HVAC issue of some kind? It is definitely always really hot in there and I’m worried maybe it’s not circulating enough air. It is basically a closet and I think has just one small vent.

    I definitely never had this issue during my maternity leave when I pumped sitting in my rocking chair in the nursery…. and I was arguably more dehydrated/exhausted than I am now!

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