Family Friday: Le Pom Pom Camera Strap

While I was perusing the Free People website for the shoe pick from Tuesday, I came across this camera strap. I love taking photos but I am by no means a photographer. Nowadays I don’t even bring my nice camera on trips because my iPhone camera takes such great photos. However, if I were going on a family vacation this summer where I would come across beautiful scenery or would want to take some nicer family photos with a vacation backdrop, I would definitely make a point to bring it. If you’re an avid photo taker or just find joy in breaking out a nice camera, this is a cool accessory to outfit your camera with. (They have other designs as well.) If other people are going to be taking your photo, it would be nice not to have a boring black camera strap around your neck in every photo from your vacation! Le Pom Pom Camera Strap

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  1. Getting ready to leave my almost 6 month old on an overnight for the first time this weekend. I *think* I have enough milk for him for the 24 hours plus a bit extra but he’s been exclusively breast fed until now and I’ve never left him before so a little nervous. He eats three bottles when I am at work but grazes on the weekend and whenever I’m home. We’ve started him on solids but he hasn’t gotten the hang of actually eating yet. Is it a good or a bad idea to buy some emergency formula, just in case? Or just stock up on food he can eat if needed and let them sort it out? I’ve never been a big freezer stash person and while I think we should be okay, I feel like I need to be better prepared.

    • Maybe just get some of the cartons of the pre-made formula?

    • Clementine says:

      Go out and buy some ‘Crystal Lite for Babies’ – AKA the formula in the single pre-measured portions.

      You will not need these. You’re going to go spend the $ so you don’t have to think about this. You have plenty of milk and if baby needs it, they can pop open a pre-measured pouch. Baby was EBF, but my theory is that once you’ve introduced solids, a little formula is less of a deal than it is if they’ve never had anything other than b milk.

      Everything will be great!

      • Anonymous says:

        Yep, this! Though I’d grab one of those packs of the 2-oz ready-to-feed formula bottles–they’re a little more expensive but super easy for caregivers to use. Chances are good you won’t need it, but it will be there as a backup just in case.

        • +1. My 5 month old is almost EBF but we take those ready-to-feed 2 oz formula bottles with us when we travel and have used them with great success when nursing isn’t convenient or safe (e.g. when we’re on an airplane and the seat belt sign is on so we can’t take her out of her carseat to nurse). She normally takes a lot more than 2 oz at a feed, but one will tide her over until we can nurse. They’re expensive but since we use them so rarely it’s worth it. So much easier than powder formula you have to mix.

          • What are these? Name? I’ll be stopping by the drugstore on my way home. Thanks!

          • I think a lot of brands probably make them, but we use Similac Pro Advance. It comes in a gray box with eight 2-oz bottles and a n*pple. I think the box is $8 so it’s about $1/bottle.
            Our baby has no issue drinking it at room temperature even though she mostly has 98 degree milk.

          • Anonymous says:

            Yeah, Enfamil and Similac both make them and I think you can also get the ‘gentle’ versions if you’d prefer that to the regular. They look basically like a little baby 6-pack.

      • Lana Del Raygun says:

        YES to trading worry for money whenever possible.

    • Also, are you going someplace fun? I’m taking my first baby free overnight in September and while it’s for work, I’m looking forward to sleeping without the hum of the baby monitor.

      • We have a wedding for a good friend so I am excited. Lots of people I haven’t seen in a while and no one to wake me up at night. But right now I am just stressed about the logistics. I’m sure it will be fun once I’m actually there and get past the first 30 min of thinking I forgot my kids somewhere.

        • Ha, this! I remember when we checked into the hotel for our first kid-free night away and I definitely felt like we were missing something.

    • avocado says:

      What about the single-serve packets of powder formula? Those are handy to have around, and you don’t have to worry about using up the powder within the time limit as you do with a big can of powder. I liked carrying around a sippy cup of water and a packet of formula powder so I could quickly mix up a snack if baby got hangry and it was not convenient to nurse.

    • The small cartons of pre-mixed formula might work well too. Caregiver can just dump it in a bottle, heat a little and go! No mixing needed even.

    • Definitely stock up on a little extra pre-mixed formula, plus a small tin of powdered formula, as well as baby food (or whatever your kid eats).

      I say the tinned formula because there’s a tiny, infinitesimal chance that baby will hate the taste of formula, full stop. (We ran out of BM at daycare once or twice when kid was ~6-7 months old; even though I supplemented for the first month of his life, he refused to drink the exact same brand formula I’d left there and waited till pickup time to nurse. @#(% picky eaters.) So, on the off chance, you might want to set aside a little frozen milk for mixing. I don’t want to scare you though! Chances are he will be fine.

    • Anonymous says:

      If you don’t use the formula now, there’s a decent chance you’ll want a little if if your supply dips around the 9 month mark. And if it is unopened you can probably find a good home for it if you end up never using it.

      • Thanks ladies! This is just what I needed to hear. I think it’ll also be less stress for my mom who’ll be with the baby to know that she has the formula if she needs it so she’s not tempted to hoard the milk (I’ve told her not to but she is “thrifty”).

  2. Labels says:

    How do you label your kids clothes, lunchbox, water bottle, etc. for daycare or preschool? Kiddo is home with a nanny but starting part-time preschool in the fall.

    • Anonymous says:

      There’s a bunch of companies that make labels (Inchbug, Mable’s Labels, etc) which is what most people seem to do. Cheaper options include just writing the name on clothing with a sharpie and sticking a piece of tape on the lunch box and water bottle.

    • avocado says:

      Mabel’s Labels TagMates. They are tiny, stay on well in the laundry and the dishwasher, and peel off easily when the clothes are outgrown and it’s time to donate.

    • mascot says:

      NameBubbles stickers work great and stay on through laundry, dishwasher, etc and are easy to remove if needed. There are other similar products like Mabels labels. Sign up for emails to get coupons. For clothing, I only put labels on the back-up outfit that stayed in his cubby/bag and outwear. I figure I didn’t need to waste labels on clothes that he was already wearing.

      • This is what we do basically exactly. I really like NameBubbles. They last amazingly on stuff that goes in the dishwasher!

      • Another vote for Namebubbles. Watch their emails for coupons/sales because you’ll get 15% off regularly. But they stay on through laundry and dishwasher amazingly well.

    • ginger hb says:

      I like the namebug labels (I always give them as a shower gift when people share names ahead of time). They really hold up well.

    • I like Namebubbles the best. They make these tiny round stickers that fit on kids clothing tags, etc. And they stay on really well.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Piling on for Namebubbles – I also liked that I could pull the stickers off clothes when I donated them after kiddo outgrew them. Yet somehow they stay on in the laundry? It’s magic, I tell you.

    • I did a sharpie. Also, if you have multiple kids (or think you might), do last name only (if that works at your school). That way hand-me-downs are already labeled.

    • Spirograph says:

      For hats, water bottles, show and tell toys or books, I just use a sharpie. I don’t label clothes, sheets or blankets, since they generally are put straight into my kids’ individual bins, which are labeled, and I don’t send anything I would be devastated to lose. My preschoolers know what their blankets and sheets look like, so they are pretty good about keeping track of them in the closed system of their classroom.

  3. Anonymous says:

    We’re thinking about converting our 19-month-old twins’ cribs to toddler beds. We travel a lot and it would be so convenient if they were used to sleeping in something that isn’t a crib so we could stop lugging pack-n-plays everywhere. Is getting rid of the crib this early brilliant for the easier travels or a horrible idea because why mess with a good thing?

    • mascot says:

      We did it at this age because my kid flipped himself out of the crib. I can’t promise that it gets rid of the PNP for travel if you can’t ensure a toddler-proofed room- maybe not a big deal if you are sharing a room with them. We got a little kid sized air mattress for travel and that worked well too.

      • Sarabeth says:

        Although, my kid started climbing out of the pack n play at 20 months, so those days might be numbered in any case.

    • In my experience, ability to sleep in a regular bed at home does not correlate to ability to sleep in a strange bed on the road. My kids have been in regular beds for years and are still terrible at travel sleep. Don’t mess with your day to day would be my advice!

    • ElisaR says:

      I don’t think it’s worth messing with it. I am trying to keep my son in the crib as long as I can because once he is out and about its game over for going to bed and waking up in the morning….

      He sleeps in a crib at night but at daycare sleeps on a nap mat on the floor. So theoretically if we travel he might not need to sleep in a pack and play but I have always brought one anyway.

    • If you travel by car,, you could also consider an inflatable toddler bed. It’s like an air mattress with a little bumper around it, the size of a crib mattress. My kids happily sleep in this, and don’t even mind sleeping just in the “bumper” part in hotels, at grandma’s, etc. They call it the “boat bed” because it does kind of look like a lifeboat.

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree with everyone else, I’d keep the cribs until the kids figure out how to get out of them. My 23 month old, amazingly, has not figured this out yet, despite his older siblings trying to teach him (grrrr), nor has he figured out how to get out of a pack n play that is isolated from other furniture. I am enjoying having him contained.

      We do have inflatable beds for the older kids, and I don’t find them any more or less convenient than hauling a pack n play, honestly. They’re both just things I have to put in the back of the car when we go to grandma’s house.

  4. Anonymous says:

    I’ve had a great experience with the labels from inchbug. Get more than you think you need!

  5. anon. says:

    Mabels Labels. Order the starter pack, see which ones you use the most of, then order more if you need them. The starter pack got us through the first year, now I just order Tag Mates or the larger sized ones separately.

  6. Double Jogger says:

    It was so interesting to read yesterday’s post from another professional working woman who is a foster parent!

    For contrast, I wanted to share a little bit of my experience as a foster parent. In the past year, we’ve had 6 kids come through our house, staying anywhere from just a few days to a few months. I’ve never taken a maternity leave for any kiddos, but have applied for FMLA so that I could use leave without prior approval if needed.

    What’s so surprising to me is that you didn’t list any appointments or visits! Out of curiosity, did you just leave that detail our or do you not have any? For those of you not in FP-land, kids in care very commonly will have visits with biological parents, siblings, and other relatives. Additionally, it’s pretty normal to have many more appointments with a kid in care- things like visits from social workers, EI appointments, additional doctor’s or pediatrician appointments, therapy, etc.

    Best wishes that everything goes smoothly in the next few weeks! Although, won’t you miss documenting everything in your life? (Kidding – as a foster parent I have to document so many bumps and bruises… things like, ‘Child was walking while holding a toy car and tripped on own feet, refused to let go of car to catch self and has a bruise on forehead as a result’).

    • AnotherAnon says:

      Hi, I’m the foster mom from yesterday’s profile. I mentioned the urgent care visit, but most of his doctor’s appointments were toward the beginning of his stay with us (3 day checkup, 6 week checkup, ECI, etc). I used sick time for those. He has almost no health issues, which is super fortunate for all of us. I know that is not the norm. We were also very, very lucky that he had no court-ordered family visitation. That’s all I’ll say about that: there is some back story that’s not appropriate for sharing on the internet. It’s definitely something I think about as we continue to pursue fostering – family visits and any “extra” health visits would put a bit of strain on my schedule, but DH’s schedule is more flexible these days so I’d probably lean heavily on him for these in the future. TBH all the logs are annoying at first, but as a first time mom and a type-A person, I actually appreciated writing everything down as it helped me to keep track. I’ve also learned from other foster moms to document everything in case the family or CPS has…let’s say, “conflicting stories” about the child’s situation/welfare. It’s good to hear from another foster mom! I sort of wish there were a foster mom forum like this but then all the responses on yesterday’s post made me appreciate this community all the more.

      • Double Jogger says:

        Thank you for responding!

        And yeah… the other foster parent forums I’ve found are either hyper religious or not my style of fostering (lots of bio-bashing which is not my jam). I have found my own weird little circle of foster parents and just figure it out.

        I asked about other appointments because our social workers are forever springing last minute things on us. ‘Oh, can we reschedule X thing for 10AM on a Wednesday? Oh, BTW- I need you to bring the kid for a physical and it needs to happen within the next 24 hours.’ That’s the part of fostering that I find so challenging with a full time schedule. I’m also lucky to have a supportive partner who absolutely does 50% of the legwork – if I didn’t, I don’t think I could work and foster.

        • AnotherAnon says:

          That’s interesting about other forums; I have a foster mom group that meets monthly and I can share more there but we definitely try to keep bio bashing to a minimum. We have found the best way to handle CPS’ “urgent”, last-minute requests is to comply but make it very, very inconvenient for them. “Oh he needs a physical in the next 24 hours? Ok the only time we could possibly make that work is tomorrow between 7PM and 10PM. Sorry, we both work full time. If you could give us more advanced notice in the future we can be more accommodating!” Of course if you’re talking about family visitation or intake, I think those are less negotiable than standard CPS visits. Good luck. Sorry you’re dealing with that. The system definitely takes advantage of foster parents.

  7. BettySmith says:

    The RTF (ready to feed/pre-mixed) formula is the best thing ever. People get so hung up on EBF but I just really don’t see how a little formula is a big deal, especially when baby isn’t a brand newborn. I was just always so reassured that we could always have formula and a bottle with us or leave with caregivers and baby would be good to go. I nursed for 9 months but never did a stash and it was just so much less stressful.

    • I don’t disagree. I’ve just never had to do it before because the need never arose and so I am a bit lost on the logistics. I know there are lots of options but just don’t know any of them. I also read about people “transitioning” to formula by mixing with breast milk and slowly increasing the formula to milk ratio and so I wasn’t sure if just leaving an extra bottle with formula would be pointless or if maybe I need to leave instructions on mixing it with my milk, etc. Formula is fine. It’s not poison. I think it’s fine to feed exclusively so certainly not concerned about my son having a bottle or two while I’m gone.

      • Anonymous says:

        AIMS, in case it is reassurring, my son was EBF except for a little formula when he was 1 day old in the NICU. We left him overnight when he was 6 months old and my parents gave him a couple bottles of formula with no lead-in or transition. It was fine – he drank it right down and had no digestive issues or anything. You could try a bottle of formula tonight if you are worried and then adjust instructions accordingly. If he takes it straight up, no need to worry about mixing.

        • Thanks! I think if he has any it will be a small amount anyway so I’ll just cross fingers and hope for the best. But good to know your little one didn’t require any lead in.

  8. Flying with infant says:

    Can anybody speak to whether I’m crazy or reasonable for thinking we might be able to do a very long-haul international flight with a 3mo infant? I’ve heard success stories about flying at that age because they mostly just sleep and nurse, but since baby isn’t here yet and this is our first, I have no idea how it will play out for us specifically. Are bulkhead bassinets still a thing? Should I just give up on this idea?

    • Anonymous says:

      I don’t think it’s unreasonable.

    • Sarabeth says:

      Bulkhead bassinets are still a thing, at least on some airlines. I fly 18ish hours direct pretty frequently, and have done it with kids. I would MUCH rather have a 3 month old than pretty much any other age under 3 years. If baby is colicky, they will probably be moving past it by then (although 3.5-4 months might be a slightly safer bet). But trust me, you do NOT want to be on that flight with an 18 month old if you have any other choices. Or at least, not with my 18 month olds.

      • Agreed! If this is a trip that you really want to take at some point within the next 3-5 years, this is the best possible time to do it.

        • Flying with infant says:

          Yes! That’s the idea– BFF lives in Australia and we live on the US East Coast, so ideally this is the best window to bring little one for a visit.

          • Totally off topic, but I hope you’ll think about going back when your kid(s) are in elementary school. I went to Australia when I was 8 and it was the most incredible trip. I still think about it fondly all the time, almost 30 years later. I’m pretty sure I just read the entire flight so it wasn’t hard for my parents at all. And Quantas has (or had anyway) amazing complimentary stuff for kids.

          • Sarabeth says:

            Yes, absolutely, if you feel like you need to get the kid over to see relatives, it’s only going to get harder for the next few years! Same situation here, and while there were challenges (mainly, getting any sleep, because baby actually wasn’t super thrilled about the bulkhead bassinet and wanted to be held the whole time), it was SO MUCH easier than the time I did it with a two year-old who barely slept and threw an epic tantrum while all the other passengers gazed on in horror.

    • Anonymous says:

      Do it! We did our first flight (6 hours cross-country) with a 3-month-old and despite all the stress before hand it was definitely the easiest flight we’ve taken post-kids. Baby slept much of the time and was otherwise generally content to just sit and look around or play with a toy, in constrast to older babies and toddlers who need constant entertaining.

      Bassinettes are still a thing, but you have to reserve one in advance and the exact details depend on the airline you’re flying.

    • I think 3 months old would be much easier than an older baby. I flew with a 10 month old and it was more challenging to entertain him. Book a seat with a bassinet, bring a sling and pray for sleep.

    • I’ve never done an 18-hour international flight, but I flew with my kid at 4 months (and he was a preemie, so he acted like a 3-month-old). It was by far the easiest flight I’ve taken with him–he really did just nurse and sleep. The hardest one was right before he turned 2–we cheaped out and didn’t buy him a seat, but he was big and mobile and not interested in screens. Fortunately, that was a short flight.

    • I think all babies are different, but by 3 months my LO was definitely not sleeping all day. She was probably awake for about 7-8 hours total a day, mostly in ~2 hour stretches. I think the flight will be very doable, but I wouldn’t assume baby will sleep the entire time, especially if it’s not a night flight.

      • Anonymous says:

        Yeah, my son stopped napping for more than 45 minutes at a time around 2.5 months old. But still it is an easier age to fly with than an older baby.

    • Agree — probably now is the best it will be for a while because they’re small, sleep/eat a lot and are relatively immobile. Plus they’re so cute that other passengers might be more inclined to help you out. Plan for lots of nursing, and bring (multiple) changes of clothes for everyone. I think you’re not supposed to have them in a carrier for take off and landing, but the rest of the time that can be good and I think that there are different products for having them sleep. If you’re nursing, bring a ton of water for yourself. And wait as long as possible to get on the plane. And I assume you know this, but plan ahead for their passport bc who knows how long that will take!

    • Anonymous says:

      A voice of caution – I would wait until baby is here to buy flights unless you get the cancel-for-any-reason insurance. While 3 months may be the best age for this for most babies, you just don’t know your baby until he/she is here. My baby was a lot easier a little older than 3 months; for the first few months of her life she was only happy if being bounced and being forced to sit with her if the seatbelt sign were on would have been rough. If you can wait I would buy them when baby is 3 weeks old or so.

    • Perfect age for flying. Do it. AirFrance has bassinets on their 777s; not sure about others.

      I did transcontinental US flights at 3mos and they were by far the easiest flights I’ve done with my kiddo. Only issues were poop related – at that age, it was frequent and liquid and that is no fun on a flight. But daddy took care of all that :)

      Also at 3 mos my kid slept 85% of the time so he was really easy to deal with, but we did buy trip insurance in case he got sick and we couldn’t fly.

    • i brought both my babies on international trips when they were 3 months old. this last one we brought to australia. 12 hour flight to asia, two hour layover, 10 hour flight to australia. we had a bassinet and she was a dream. slept and looked around. she was super easy on the trip there as well. don’t ask me about the three year old on the plane. but 3yo was equally amazing when we brought her to asia when she was 3 months old. go now!

    • Blueberries says:

      As long as the pediatrician gives the ok, should be fine.

      The seats that have bassinets are great even if your baby refused to sleep in one because you get more room for baby stuff. However, my experience was that there’s no guarantee of getting the bulkhead seats that support the bassinet. We had to trade with very kind strangers.

  9. ginger hb says:

    Ideas for weekend indoor activities for an 18 month old? I know a lot this depends on your particular city but it’s going to be HOT in our midwestern city this weekend and we get stir crazy if we stay home with kiddo all weekend. but outdoor options (zoo, parks, etc) are out for us when it’s this hot.

    • Anonymous says:


    • Anonymous says:

      Library, aquarium, indoor playground, museums, mall (ours has several stories and the top floor is always empty so kiddo can run around and not bother anyone), indoor pool, outdoor pool, playdates at a friend’s house so there are new toys to play with.

    • Our usual options are swimming at the YMCA, indoor kids’ gym, zoo (ours has tons of indoor exhibits), museums, family friendly restaurants, and running errands.

    • Do you have any of those pay indoor playgrounds? Ours is like $5 or something and so worth it.

    • Anonymous says:

      Pool/waterpark? Although they’re always crowded when it’s super hot.

    • octagon says:

      If it’s too hot for an outdoor pool, hotels will usually let you buy a day pass to use their pool. It would be new and exciting for the kid!

    • Sounds like this weekend will be a pool weekend! Hope you have one you can go to!

  10. In a moment of dejau vu: My 5 year old came home from summer camp yesterday to tell me that there is a parent/child game (she’s at soccer camp) at 11:30 today. While cursing under my breath, I explained that mommy nor daddy would be there. She seemed ok with it.

    • Mrs. Jones says:

      Solidarity. And sigh.

    • That’s ridiculous! Who runs these camps?!? Even parents who don’t work presumably send their kids to camp for a break. And shouldn’t the camp be communicating these things in advance instead of relying on 5 year olds as a messenger

      • Anonymous says:

        After going through this exact scenario approximately one zillion times, I think I know who runs the camps: People who think that their camp is the single most important thing happening in the family’s life during the entire summer. The specialty camps are the worst, especially the ones that only run for one or two sessions. The staff spend all year preparing and are SO excited when the kids actually arrive. They seem genuinely confused when the parents just want to drop their kids off and have them entertained with zero parental involvement.

  11. Cry, cry again says:

    Looking for advice in dealing with a 5 yo rising Kindergartner that usually reacts to things not going her way with huge crying jags. I’m interested in teaching her how to have a proportionate response to things like being told you can’t bring that huge toy in the car or her little brother breaking up her Lego house, for instance. “Please stop crying, it’s not that big of a deal” really isn’t working that’s for sure, but I’m not sure how to help her get over things quicker or not let the little stuff bother her. I really don’t want her crying her way through kindergarten!

    • Marilla says:

      Have you tried the opposite tactic? Echoing her feeling that she’s upset about it/naming the feeling (you are MAD that your brother smashed your Lego house! You worked hard on it!) and then redirecting to workable solutions – do you want to build your house on the table where he can’t reach? Do you want to give him a few Legos to play with by himself?
      I think a lot of the difficulty comes from the fact that these are a Big Deal to little kids and they just get flooded by the emotion – so our instinctive reaction to say like ok honey, let’s move on, is not productive in handling the issue. I find How To Talk So Little Kids Will Listen and Siblings without Rivalry both helpful in framing this.

    • You may already do this, but I would empathize when she’s upset by saying things like, “It’s hard to stop playing with your toys when it’s time to go,” or “It’s frustrating when your brother breaks up your Lego house”? You may have to work with her/teach her ways to calm down once she’s upset–go to a calm place, deep breaths, a comfort item, etc. But, yeah, “It’s not that big of a deal” doesn’t work on most humans, small or large.

      It’s not clear from your post whether she’s going from 0 to 10 immediately, or she’s getting irritated even before she starts crying. Look for signs that she’s getting upset, and try to intervene early. For example,give her a warning before it’s time to go, and tell her she can pick one small toy for the car as long as she’s ready to go on time. If she’s getting upset while playing with her brother, send them to separate spaces before there’s a meltdown, or have them help you with making dinner, setting the table, etc.

    • shortperson says:

      have you read any of janet lansbury’s work? her theory, which has held true in my experience, that emotional reactions like excessive crying are a healthy way for kids to vent what they need to. if you should make space for this behavior it will eventually pass. i would start with: and

    • Clementine says:

      There’s a Pete the Cat book ‘I love my white shoes’. The basic storyline is that Pete’s white shoes get dirty, but does he get upset? Goodness no! He keeps walking along and singing his song!

      This book has actually been a great jumping off point for talking to kids about not freaking out about small upsets. We actually use the cue phrase, ‘But did Pete get upset?’ when something small happens – like our cracker breaks. The kid(s) shout back ‘Goodness no!’ and we talk about how it’s all good and nobody was hurt or not safe or unkind.

      Also- as an adult, a friend was coached by her therapist that ‘not everything needs to be an 8/9/10. Bring it down to a 3/4/5’. So as adults, we’ll remind one another ‘3/4/5!’

      • Cry, cry again says:

        ty for the book rec! I was just looking on amazon for a helpful book and couldn’t find anything age-appropriate, definitely buying this one : )

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Kiddo is younger than that, so fwiw – I’ve had good luck naming the feeling I think kiddo is having and letting her know that it’s a tough feeling. Like, “It’s frustrating when someone smashes your castle, isn’t it? I’m sorry you’re frustrated.” And then a little shoulder squeeze if she is amenable. I usually leave it at that and let her work through the rest of the feeling before interacting again. Sometimes they just need to blow up and get it out of their system, and you’ll prolong it if you make a big deal out of it.

      Although tbh – this is usually a sign that kiddo needs a rest. These types of blow ups happen most often between 1-2 and after 6 pm.

    • As the parent of a rising first grader, I can tell you that this sort of thing was a HUGE part of my daughter’s kindergarten classroom. To the point that they had a back and forth with the teacher when they started getting upset where the teacher would say: “Did Pete cry?” and the kid(s) would say “GOODNESS NO!”. The teacher recommended a bunch of books to help kids with this feeling of working through being frustrated or upset when things didn’t go their way. Pete the Cat I love My White Shoes and Four Groovy Buttons, It’s OK to Make Mistakes, The Dot, The Most Magnificent Thing are all books we like. Also from what I’ve seen this sort of 0-10 meltdown is an indication that my kid is tired or hangry. YMMV!

      • My kid is going into K next year so good to hear that it’s a part of the curriculum there too. It was a large part of her PreK and she’s better, but can still lose her mind on occasion.

        Just a +1 to the tired or hangry. I find that my kids need a snack and a 10 minute cartoon immediately after getting home from daycare/ school/ after care, or they have these same 0 to 10 blowups much more frequently. The screen time helps them mentally shift gears into quieter, calmer home-life and the snack solves hangry issues. (We used to do books instead of screen time, but since they’re now in reading or learning to read mode, books are now a homework-type activity rather than a mindless relaxing activity. Once they can read for “fun” again, I imagine a few minutes with say, Harry Potter, would have a similar effect.)

  12. Why does health insurance have to be so frustrating?! We’ve been taking Kiddo to occupational therapy for the last 6 weeks. The OT’s office said we were in network and have been charging us the in-network deductible. I checked the insurance company’s website, and it looked like she was in network. I noticed our insurance company hasn’t processed any of the claims, and DH called the insurance company this morning. It turns out that, while our OT is in network for 6 plans offered by our insurance company, she is not in network for our specific plan. That means we’ll owe a little more money, but more importantly, the past 6 weeks of OT won’t count against our in-network deductible.

    We can switch OTs. It’s less convenient to our house and daycare, but I’m sure it will be fine. I’m just frustrated that it feels like over $500 is down the drain because it’s so hard to figure this sh*t out.

    • Ugh, I feel you. Or the tricky one when the doctor is in-network, but the practice isn’t, and they bill to the practice instead of the doctor…. or vice versa. I just hate that it’s not transparent.

    • octagon says:

      Start by asking the OT office to reduce the charge, since they told you the wrong information. You could also try to file an appeal with your insurance.

      • Thanks. We have a call into the OT’s office, but since it’s Friday afternoon, I doubt we’ll hear back until Monday.

        I’ll think about an appeal with the insurance company. They’re not known for being nice or customer-friendly. They have over 80% of the market share in my state, so why would they be? I’m not sure what exactly there is to appeal–they’re paying according to the policy, and their website accurately lists the plans for which the OT is in network (nevermind that all the plans sound exactly the same). But I may try.

  13. Anonymous says:

    Looking for advice – any moms with young kids travel a lot for work? Considering a job offer that would involve 30-40% travel – it’s a great professional opportunity, but I have a 16 month old at home and not sure how this would all work out. DH works full time and travels 10-20% for work also. Would love to hear advice from others who have been there or have considered a job with significant travel.

    • In our family I’m the 10-20% and DH is 30-40%. It requires planning, and having family nearby or a babysitter you can have come in the evenings is essential imo.

      With technology, I do still feel very connected when I’m away – DH and I text about logistics or any kid-related questions, and we facetime every day one of us is gone. With long hours and early bed times, we both usually have 1-2 days a week where we don’t make bedtime anyway, so in that sense it isn’t much different.

      DH is generally a really involved parent so he doesn’t mind solo parenting at all. The only thing we’ve both found tough is when you are solo AND have long days – hence the need for babysitter or family beyond daycare (unless your daycare operates crazy hours; ours does not). Particularly if we need to be in by 7:30, it makes morning tough when you’re solo. We also both like to commit to pickup, even if it means we log back on or even return to the office (leaving baby with my mom) after. Logistically it’s so much easier with two parents in town, but it’s still doable – again, with help.

    • shortperson says:

      do you have backup if you both need to be gone at the same time?

    • avocado says:

      How much control will you and your husband have over your travel schedules? My husband doesn’t travel for work, I have some degree of control over my travel schedule, and scheduling is still a challenge. It would be insanely difficult to add spousal travel into the scheduling mix. It might be easier if you had local family who could stay with the kids if both spouses were traveling at the same time, but in my experience this is not as reliable as one would hope.

      • +1. My DH travels and does not have much control over the schedule. I travel much less, but am more flexible in the timing. We have semi-local family for overlaps, but even that is not reliable all the time, and we’ve had a few occasions where we’ve had to deal with MUCH less than ideal circumstances when the family backup fell through. (Once kids had to come with me and use a hotel sitter that I had never met, once we let someone stay in our home with the kids who we had only met once.)

        The stress was horrible. We both ended up looking for and finding new jobs. He travels less and has more control, I only travel 1-2x/ year.

        Maybe other people can make it work better than we can, but that trip with the kids in the hotel was one of the worst I’ve ever had. I was riddled with anxiety the entire time I was out of the room, and couldn’t stop checking the Facetime feed I had set up so I could check in on the room at any point.

      • +1. I don’t really see how you overlap those two unless you have a live-in Nanny who is willing to do a lot of overtime.

        • anne-on says:

          It can work as long as both sets of travel are laid out pretty far in advance AND you have family willing to help OR really awesome babysitters + daycare hours. A regular school schedule (with after school activities) is when it all went south for us and we had to hire out help (an au pair, nanny would also have worked).

    • anne-on says:

      I travel roughly that much, it is largely confined within set ‘chunks’ of the year, and I have a pretty decent amount of advance notice. It is easier now that is is almost entirely east coast travel with a few bigger international trips. 30-40% travel to a city 1-3 hour away via plane is A LOT different than 30-40% travel to an opposite coast or international (done both, the second is what made me swap roles).
      It worked ok-ish with my husband and parents/inlaws helping out during the daycare years. A regular school schedule and grandparents not being able to help any longer made us swap to an au pair, otherwise that much travel simply would not work.
      I’d also advise you to have back ups for your back up. If your kiddo is sick and your husband can’t stay at home and grandparents are 2 hours away and you need to leave for a flight NOW what do you do?

  14. Anonymous says:

    Paranoid mom question here – my 5.5 month old is not moving at all. She rolled tummy to back exactly once (several weeks ago), seemed really freaked out, and hasn’t done it since. She’s also not showing any interest in scooting or crawling (although I know that typically comes a bit later). Her head and trunk control seems pretty normal – she holds her head and chest up for long stretches during tummy time and can sit up for quite a while if we support her lower back. Is she just lazy?? I’m going to ask the doctor about it at the 6 month appt in a few weeks, but if anyone has reassuring anecdata that their kid rolled late or never rolled and turned out normal, I would appreciate hearing it.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Kiddo, despite being very strong, didn’t roll over until she could sit up independently. I think she just didn’t need to, so she didn’t bother. She sat up solo at around 5 or 6 months, I think.

    • Is she big for her age? My kids didn’t move very much, and my doctor said it was because they were big. I’d watch all these kids crawl circles around them at daycare while they laid out in their immense blubber…

    • Artemis says:

      Half serious, half silly . . . is your baby very chubby? My first was a string bean–almost no baby fat, 80% head size, 10% weight percentile. He had very good head control, like your baby, but rolled really really early. I remember the pediatrician and the nurse laughing when I asked about the early rolling (I was concerned about him doing it at night or something) because they half-joked that of course he could roll early, he just tossed his big head around and his little body followed!

      If you have a, you know, adorable chubby baby, then the not rolling until a little later (totally normal, BTW) might be, kind of, physics! :)

      • Anonymous says:

        Hmm, she’s bigger than average but not giant or especially chubby – about 80th percentile for height, 60th for weight. But she does have a small head relative to her body (20th percentile) so maybe there’s something to the idea that physics is involved.

  15. shortperson says:

    this is a great rec. most accessories for fancy cameras assume you are a techy man. i love these straps. however, having just spent way too much on a camera, $90 on a strap is not happening.

  16. Your baby’s fine. 5.5 months is way too early for scooting or crawling. It’s great that she has already rolled over and will do it more once she gets the hang of it. Just continue to do tummy time.

  17. Silly question. Almost 8 month old loves solids. Started him on oatmeal, then veggies, then fruits, and then a bit of everything else (yogurt, eggs, etc). But right now he prefers fruits to veggies. I still offer the veggies, but it’s a lot slower for him to eat, and he rejects quicker. Any ideas? Do I just keep offering until this “phase” passes? Or just mix fruits/veggies? Want him to get used to the taste without hiding. Maybe I’m overthinking :)

    • Spirograph says:

      You’re overthinking :)

      Preferences come and go, sometimes within the same day. My kids really liked fruit/vegetable mixes, because if you put enough apple or pear in with anything — even kale! — it tastes good. Keep offering a variety, and if you’re worried about wasting food, puree with applesauce once the rejection sets in.

  18. shortperson says:

    i dont think you are overthinking. i think a lot about developing baby’s palate. i would continue to offer veggies alone and not worry about speed or rejections.

  19. Anonymous says:

    My son has a 95th percentile – off the charts head and rolled for the first time by 10 weeks. He was never early with any other gross motor milestone. But he did just kind of lead with his head and the rest of his body followed. (He learned to roll swaddled at 12 weeks, the night before I went back to work, which was a terrible coincidence.) I agree your baby sounds perfectly normal. Enjoy the holding still while you can!

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