Family Friday: SoftSip Food Pouch Top

If you don’t have any use for these, then your child has way better dexterity/self-control than mine! The minute I would hand my son a pouch, he would promptly squeeze the entire thing all over his face or shirt. I like these for several reasons — your child can’t squeeze the puree out without biting or sucking from the top, they keep their teeth and gums from scraping on the plastic, and they are easy to clean. With one of them, I cut the piece off that serves to cap the top — my son was distracted by it while eating, so off it went. Not holding the pouch while my son is eating them freed up many minutes from my day. They are $7.99 for two at Amazon. ChooMee Food Pouch Top

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  1. We went through a stage where we struggled with pouches, but it was just a stage. Our daughter got the hang of it with a little practice. Also, not all pouches are made equal. These seem like a pain.

    • +1. With each kid, we went through about a month of figuring out pouches, then all was good. They still have troubles with those yogurt tubes, although we only have them every few months (when we eat at Panera) so I’m not worried.

      I really liked the Plum Organics pouches with quinoa and amaranth and whatever in them, so I was determined to get my kids to eat those. I still send them in school lunches sometimes (I call them “special applesauce”) when I think we need some extra veggie servings or when they’re going through a growth spurt. I figure even the small amount of spinach in the pouch is getting more of it in my kids’ bellies than if I sent straight spinach.

      • NewMomAnon says:

        I’ve determined that I mostly send pouches to school so they can get out of the house for a few hours….they inevitably come home unopened.

  2. So I thought I didn’t really care about mother’s day except my husband hasn’t asked all week what I’d like to do for it. And then today he asks if he can go see his mom (who lives 2 hours away) when she had just visited last weekend. I mean I get him wanting to see his mom but we see her pretty frequently considering the distance, are already seeing her next week, and it’s my mother’s day too. In some ways I think it’s a silly holiday, but I also don’t like feeling left out. Argh.

    • anne-on says:

      Can he take the kids with him so you can have a day to do what you want? That is (my) ideal – dad and kids out of the house until evening when you can all have dinner together and then nighttime cuddles.

      • Anonymous says:


        FWIW I’ve decided to just plan Mother’s Day the way I want it. Yes it would be nice if my husband would ask what I want and plan it, but he’s not a great planner, so planning it myself is the next best thing.

        • Last year my mom visited. It was great because I planned the day I wanted for her and got the benefit of it too. We went to brunch with my husband and daughter and then made a trip to my favorite farm stand while hubby and kiddo stayed home.

    • Oh man, I totally feel you. Between DH’s mom and my mom and other commitments this weekend, there is no time to do what I want. I totally agree that it’s a pointless holiday and I feel silly for caring.

    • I sent DH’s mom and grandmother cards that I had our kids make. I told DH last weekend he was on point to deal with anything to his mom/grandma from him. Guess what they’re getting from him? Nothing.

      I love my DH, but he is no planner. I told him a few days ago that he’s going to take the kids from whenever ungodly hour they wake up until lunch; I will be getting a mani/pedi. I suggested he take them to the garden shop and pick out some pretty flowers for us to have in our yard. Then he and my ODD are going to help me work in the garden while our younger one naps. He will then make dinner with the kids while I relax or do more work in the garden.

      I bought my pregnant self some totally unnecessary maternity clothes (I’m 34 weeks pregnant and it’s my last. I could certainly make it 6 more weeks with nothing new), I told him to have the kids wrap up and give me.

      If I left it to DH, he’d take us all to an overpriced brunch, where my toddler and preschooler would need to be entertained the entire time, where service would take forever, and where there would be a bloody mary bar or some such that I would be sad to skip due to pregnancy :)

    • NewMomAnon says:

      I’ve decided that I will celebrate my mother no more than I get celebrated as a mother. This means that kiddo usually prepares a card for me at daycare and maybe a handmade craft. So my mother gets a handmade card and craft from me and from kiddo. My brother organizes a brunch, and if he were to stop doing that, we would not have brunch.

      On my bad days, that feels kinda petty. But on my better days, it feels right; I am in the trenches, working really hard to raise a little human. When she was in the trenches, she received lavish mothers day pampering. Now her life is much easier and she doesn’t need the Mother’s Day break; that break is literally her day to day life. It makes sense to acknowledge my life for her, but I don’t need to add to my already heavy load. And someday, if my kiddo has a kid, I hope I can step aside and let her have her day.

      • anne-on says:

        +1 – this is a good way to look at it. I try to make sure my kid honors both my mom and my husband’s mom as their grandma, I send a card and an easily delivered nominal gift to my mom (and husband handles his mom), but I’m not adding any strain to my already hectic life to go out of my way to make the day over the top amazing…uh, ain’t nobody doing that for me and I’m the one who still has hands on parenting to handle.

    • My mom has never been big on Mother’s Day – she could live without brunches and flowers and gifts. On Mother’s Day my dad would take us out for the morning, and that’s what i’m hoping for for myself! Plus I’m coming back from a work trip tonight that’s involved 15-hour workdays all week, so really all I want this year is sleep. However, Mother’s Day is kiddo’s actual birthday this year (his party is next week) so we’ll probably do ice cream and a chill family day.

  3. mofare says:

    reposting from yesterday in hopes of getting more responses (thanks anon in NYC!)

    We are considering switching our 2-year-old from a traditional daycare center (Goddard) to a Montessori-based toddler program closer to home. We have a “meet and greet” scheduled at the Montessori school next week. I know that it’s a fairly “strict” Montessori curriculum – what questions should I be prepared to ask? How can I know if Montessori might be a good fit for her? One of my hesitations is going from a class with 18 kids to a summer program with only 4 kids – I feel that she might be bored. Is this an unfounded concern? In the fall, the toddler program expands to 12 children.

    • We’ve done both Goddard (as well as other traditional daycares) and Montessori. We really like Montessori, but there are a few things to know. First of all, I think she’ll be fine with 4 kids. Montessori is really all about individual learning, so they typically spend a lot of time on their own “work”. Group activities seem to be reading books and special classes (music, science, etc.) as well as playing on the playground. At 2, they’re still doing a lot of parallel play too. The thing we love most about Montessori is that the individualized work means they’re NOT bored. If they’re ready to move on to something else, or particularly interested in a certain area, they can go to town within some limits. My daughter starts having some behavior problems when she’s bored, so her teachers have been able to load her up with harder work. She likes it and has been so much more well-behaved, too. We also love that Montessori emphasizes personal care and independence. My younger daughter has been dressing herself since age 2, now at 3 loves to rinse and cut her own strawberries, help fold laundry, etc. It’s awesome. A few down sides that we’ve found: Not as much imaginary play. My older daughter went to traditional daycares and spent a huge amount of time in the kitchen/dress up area. That is less of an emphasis in Montessori. Another downside – the positive discipline approach can make it tough to handle kids who have strong personalities (like my 3 year old) so that is something to watch out for. Also, you should ask if this school has 3-5 year olds in the same class (Children’s House). That is what our school does. It’s mostly OK except my 3 year old has all the bad habits of 3, 4 AND 5 year olds whereas my older daughter who did not do Montessori only got one set of bad habits at a time. Questions I’ve asked in the past: how do they make sure the kids choose a well-rounded set of work and don’t always just go straight to their favorite thing? How do they approach discipline? I think it’s really about listening and getting a feel for whether the philosophy matches up with your own. Good luck!

      • AwayEmily says:

        Not OP but thanks! We are also considering sending our toddler to Montessori in a year or so and this is really helpful.

    • Tfor22 says:

      I switched my son to Montessori at 20 months, and I am very happy we did. His 5 years in Montessori made him a self-directed learner which was my goal. My only real problem is that they never taught him to hold his pencil correctly, and now writing is painful and difficult for him (and for us to read).

    • Mrs. Jones says:

      Our son flourished in Montessori preschool. He never got bored because of all the different options for “work” they could choose from. The questions suggested by EB above are good ones.

    • I’ll speak as someone who explored Montessori but decided to stay in a traditional daycare – EB’s points about discipline style and child personality are huge. Both of my children are very stubborn and strong-willed, and did not mesh well with the Montessori environment at our local school. They are loud and extremely social and were not happy in a quiet, focused, mostly individual-learning center.

      I love Montessori concepts of independence and teachers-as-guides, and really wanted to make it work, but our local option was just not a fit for my kids. They are thriving in their current center that is focused on learning through imaginary play.

      • NewMomAnon says:

        +1 to this. We looked at several Montessori schools in our area, and I rejected all the ones where the kids were quietly “working” independently because I knew kiddo would rebel against that. We found one that is a sort of “soft” Montessori – they emphasize the learning style during work time, but there is a lot of room for imaginary play (they have a big dress-up area open to the kids!) and they expect the kids to engage in messy, noisy outdoor play at least twice a day. It works much better with my kiddo’s personality.

  4. AwayEmily says:

    My 3.5 month old has taken a dislike to nursing. He’ll eat when he is REALLY hungry but doesn’t seem to enjoy it much. Is this common and will it pass? It’s mainly a problem because he has stopped eating enough before bed to last him through the night. He used to have a huge meal before going to bed, and then sleep ~11 hours. Now he’s waking up starving after 8 or 9 hours because he’s hungry, and then he’s crankier during the day because he didn’t get enough sleep.

    I have to admit it also just makes me sad. I really loved the feeling of a little baby all content in my arms, getting sleepier and sleepier as they nursed. Now he just eats enough to take the edge off, then yell at me angrily if I try to get him to eat a full meal. This didn’t ever happen with my first — she definitely went through a stage where she was distracted, but not where she seemed to actively resent my b**bs.

    He has a bottle with his dad once every other day or so, and it’s the same deal with that.

    • Anonymous says:

      How long has this been happening? Is it possible he’s teething or has mouth sores/sore throat or something else that makes it uncomfortable? Is it possible your supply has dipped and he’s stopping because he’s frustrated with the milk flow slowing down after a few minutes? (This last one seems less likely since I think you are saying he reacts similarly to the bottle?)

      • Anonymous says:

        +1 to teething.

        I didn’t know that babies can start teething as early as 3 months but my oldest did. She got her first tooth early around 5 months.

        Things that helped – nursing when sleepy, walking while nursing (movement was soothing I think), cool (not cold) teething rings to chomp on prior to nursing so gums were not as sore and a dose of tylenol on occasion.

    • octagon says:

      It might be worth a consult with a lactation consultant. It could be something minor like thrush or starting to get a tooth, but this is about the time that your supply regulates, so if there’s a hidden anatomy issue like a tongue tie, this is when it would show up.

    • Anonymous says:

      Are you sure he’s eating less, not just eating shorter? My 3 month old suddenly switched from 40-60 minute nursing sessions to 10-20 minute sessions, seemingly overnight. I was worried and called the doctor and they said at this age they tend to get more efficient and they may get the same amount of milk in a much shorter time.

      • Meg Murry says:

        +1 to this. If he recently went through a 3 month growth spurt, that would have cued your body to make more milk, and now he may be able to get more milk per feeding than before.

        What time is he going to sleep? An 8-9 stretch hours is *GREAT* sleep for a 3.5 year old – I know it’s not as awesome as 11 hours, but trust me its still amazing.

        • Anonymous says:

          +1 to 8-9 hours being great at this age. My 3 month old usually sleeps about 9 hours, wakes up for a feed, goes back down for 2-3 hours and then takes two separate 1 hour naps later in the day (for a total of about 13-14 hours). Ped says this is perfect and everyone I’ve told this to is amazed she sleeps 9 hours straight.

        • AwayEmily says:

          He’s going to bed between 6:30 and 7:30, depending on when he wakes from his last nap of the day. And YES you are totally right and I should remember that he’s sleeping well, all things considering — in fact as I typed out my initial question I was like “man it’s kind of obnoxious of me to complain about a 3.5 month old baby who sleeps for nine hours in a row.” I wonder if I should try putting him right back down when he wakes up at ~5am…I’ve been just keeping him up and then putting him back down 90 minutes later for his first nap, but maybe he’d extend his night sleep if I fed him in the dark.

    • AwayEmily says:

      So kind of you all to take the time to respond. @octagon — he’s always been an efficient nurser, has gained plenty of weight and I never had any pain with nursing (unlike with my first) so I didn’t consider anatomy issues. Wouldn’t they have shown up earlier or can they manifest later on?

      I don’t think it’s a supply issue — when he pulls off, I’ll often have one side that’s still 90% full (hence also being pretty sure he really is eating less).

      Teething is an interesting idea and I had no idea they could start getting teeth so early. I’ll keep an eye out and try the cool teething ring trick.

      • Anon in NYC says:

        My friend said she got her first tooth at around 3 months! Seems to crazy to me, but babies can teethe really early.

      • Is it possible he has a cold or allergies? Any stuffiness?

      • octagon says:

        Anatomy issues often show up in the 2-4 month range. Early on a fulsome supply will mask any issues — the milk will essentially just fall into the mouth (I’m simplifying here, but they don’t have to work as hard). But as your supply regulates they can appear. My best guess is teeth, but if you can’t figure it out it would be worth another consultation, especially since he’s demonstrating that nursing is unpleasant for some reason.

        This is so hard — I wish the little ones could tell us exactly what’s going on!

    • NewMomAnon says:

      The late night wakeups may also be the 4-6 month sleep regression, which is a doozy.

  5. Anonymous says:

    When you travel with an infant do you use the hotel crib or take a pack n play? I really don’t like the idea of having to lug the pack n play (we’re going for <48 hours so we could go carry-on if we didn't have to take that) but I've read that hotel cribs can be old and may not meet current safety standards. Is it too weird to call the hotel and ask for more details about their cribs?

    • Anon in NYC says:

      I can assure you that that inquiry will not be the weirdest thing they have heard that day. FWIW, I hate traveling with a pack n play and would call and ask if I was concerned.

    • Anonymous says:

      Not weird to ask. I prefer to bring a pack-n-play for that reason, but it’s not always feasible.

    • Most hotels have switched to using pack-n-plays. I don’t think we stayed at a hotel that had traditional cribs.

      • Anonymous says:

        This. I’ve never stayed in a hotel that had an actual crib. Requesting a crib always meant there was a pack n play set up in our room when we arrived.

      • Anonymous says:

        The only traditional crib I have ever seen was at the Greenbrier. And it was nicer than my bed at home.

      • There was a crib at the resort we went to in Mexico. It was like a daycare crib and not a full size.

      • CLMom says:

        I’ve had traditional white metal cribs twice in the last 1.5 years. Most recently a week ago at a Marriott (Gaylord) hotel. They are squeaky and the bed is really hard, but they did provide a crib sheet.

        • Katala says:

          +1 this is what I had about 2 years ago. The hotel overall was not very updated so maybe a more modern establishment would have moved to pack n plays.

    • Not weird at all! When we travel by car, we take the pack and play. When we travel by plane, we use the hotel crib and definitely have had our travel agent ask more questions about the crib. However, we take our own sheets. Sometimes hotels don’t provide them. I think it is a safety thing. I feel better using my own anyway.

      We have the following sheets:

      We have a Dream on Me mattress for the pack and play now that kiddo is older. So these sheets work for that and the hotel cribs we’ve used. If kiddo is old enough, you can also ask for a spare flat sheet to wrap around the mattress. Not ideal, but if you wrap it well enough, it is fine.

    • Not weird – call and ask. I’ve always regretted not bringing my own, honestly. My kid used to sleep in her travel crib (Baby Bjorn Travel Crib Light – love, love, love it) all the time and did not enjoy strange beds. The flights we’ve taken have allowed us to check the travel crib for free.

    • I’ve never stayed in a hotel that has anything other than pack-and-plays. FWIW, they have been a mix of crib sheets and just small sheets that you tuck into the P&P mattress. So if you’re traveling with a tiny infant where loose sheets are still a concern, you may want to BYO P&P sheet.

      If you have any concern, just call and ask. As others said it is far from the oddest call they’ve had today.

    • I always call and ask and it has always been a PnP. I bring my own sheets but the last place I stayed had this cool insert thing that was like a net so baby couldn’t actually touch the nylon PnP part which is harder to wash/less likely to actually get disinfected regularly. So baby was touching a fresh, clean insert. I wish I had written down the name of it.

      Generally though I figure between the plane and hotel and restaurants, he’s getting enough germs that the PnP is the least of my concerns.

    • Yep, definitely ask. I have seen some crazy Pack n Plays. I have actually had a hotel manager go out and buy a new one before. Also agree with Jen that the sheet situation is usually questionable, so I would DEFINITELY bring your own sheet. I stayed in a hotel in Stowe, VT that had rolling mini-cribs, like some daycares have. But otherwise, it’s been PNPs.

    • Anonymous says:

      Thanks all! I called and they confirmed it is a pack n play. The baby is only 3 months so she won’t be rolling into the sides and so if we bring our own sheet (which is super easy) I think it will be perfectly hygienic.

  6. Marilla says:

    Could it be an ear infection or teething that is making nursing painful? It might be worth a quick dr visit to rule out something like that or to ask about giving Motrin if he’s teething.

  7. Travel Strollers, NOT umbrella? says:

    All: Help! My child is 18 MO and we have a city mini for travel. I know strollers are super personal so please don’t take this as an insult if you love your City Mini, but it really hasn’t worked for us. It’s heavy for a travel stroller and the basket is so small. I could deal with one of those but both are just annoying, and we travel a lot. The big positive of it though is that it is super durable and feels more like a regular stroller.

    So: Any secret travel strollers you all like that are easy to collapse but also good for when you get to your location to go on walks? We need more than a mall-walking stroller – we go on long walks on streets and sidewalks that may not be perfectly smooth.

    I hope this makes sense, I really value this collective group mind! Thanks.

    (P.S. Assume cost is not a major object – just wondering if this unicorn stroller exists)

    • Anonymous says:

      Mountain Buggy Nano – folds to carry on size for air travel and has rear wheel suspension for a smooth ride.

    • We have the City Mini, and definitely don’t consider it a “travel stroller”. It is our main stroller.

    • with ice says:

      The Zoe single stroller. Folds like the City Mini but is much lighter. Basket is marginally bigger.

      • Seconding the Zoe. Easy fold, super lightweight, and handles pretty well. We also have a City Mini GT for our every day stroller and a Zoe for travel. We wanted to get the MB Nano, but found it to be a pain to push and the 2 handed fold was annoying.

    • anne-on says:

      The uppababy G-Luxe one was totally worth it if you plan to travel a lot or swap to an umbrella stroller at some later date. The full recline, really big sun shade, easily adjustable seat and decent storage made it a win. It isn’t the very lightest, but it has the best features for its weight I found. Plus! It stands on its own when folded, black magic! And if you buy their carrying case for plane travel uppababy will reimburse you if something happens to it.
      My kiddo was/is short, so maybe try one in person as I can see it not being a great stroller for a very tall child.

    • anne-on says:

      Weird – my longer reply got eaten, but Uppababy g-luxe hands down. Amazingly sturdy and great features for the size/weight – you can probably find cheaper older ones too, ours is on my SIL’s 2nd kid and doing fine.

    • Anonymous says:

      Wait, why not umbrella strollers? A used Maclaren or UppaBaby umbrella would be my rec. Agree that a City Mini is more of a main stroller (at least it was for us).

      • Thanks – Only reason it’s our secondary stroller is that we have a Bob due to living in a city that has HORRIBLE STREETS and potholes.

        • NewMomAnon says:

          Are you confusing “umbrella stroller” with those cheap $20 things you can buy at Target? Because umbrella stroller really just refers to a means of folding it up; there is as much variety in umbrella strollers as there is among non-umbrella strollers. The Mountain Buggy Nano, GMaclaren, Uppababy g-luxe are all technically “umbrella strollers” but they have big wheels, sometimes suspension for rough streets, reclining seat, sunshade, and the basket on my umbrella stroller was bigger than the basket on our “regular” stroller. So I wouldn’t rule them out!

          • I don’t know! I’m just referring to a not full-sized stroller that’s lightweight. It doesn’t have to fold like an umbrella. Sorry, I still don’t know all the baby gear lingo, it’s so confusing!

          • anonanon says:

            The baby gear naming is so confusing. BabyGearLab calls the City Mini an umbrella stroller!

        • Anon in NYC says:

          This is not as small as an umbrella stroller, but we have a Bugaboo Bee as our “big” stroller. It’s easy to collapse and very light and does better than an umbrella stroller with uneven sidewalks. It’s not as smooth of a ride as, say, the Bugaboo Chameleon or UppaBaby Vista, but it is at least half of its weight.

          I also see a lot of people near me with a BabyZen Yoyo. I don’t know how that handles on uneven streets, but it collapses very small as well and seems bigger/smoother than an umbrella stroller.

    • babyzen yoyo

    • If you don’t like the City Mini for travel, don’t get the Summer Infant D-Lite, despite its positive reviews. It is just as heavy and barely smaller when you fold it.

    • Uppababy has a new folding stroller that may be what you’re looking for – I think it’s called the Minu? Not sure when it’s being released / available to buy.

  8. Have you let a kid quit a sport in the middle of the season?

    The backstory is that we’ve had a hard time finding an extracurricular activity that my son LOVES. He has ADHD, which means it’s hard for him to follow tons of directions and he’s socially immature for his age. So team sports haven’t gone especially well for him, but he played soccer last year and really enjoyed it. So I signed him up again and he plays on a rec league with his classmates.

    The latest iteration of that is last night he was mopey at soccer practice and wanted to play on the nearby playground instead. So the coach let him walk of the field and go play on the playground until he was ready to participate (wtf, coach). DS has his challenges, but not being a good teammate is absolutely not okay, or acceptable. I’m trying not to be too hard on the coach — he’s a volunteer parent and I sense that he’s much more freewheeling than I am, which is disastrous for a kid who really really needs boundaries and to be held accountable.

    DS swears that that I signed him up for soccer without asking him (not true) and he’s not interested in playing (huh)? He whines before every game and it’s 50/50 whether he’ll actually have a good time once he gets there. And frankly, I can tell it’s a distraction to the team, and it’s doing nothing to help DS’s relationships with his classmates, which already aren’t great. There also is a boy who picks on him consistently, and I know it’s happened at practice and even during games. So, I’m honestly considering letting him quit. There are too many boys on the team as it is, there really isn’t enough structure for him to be successful, and he’s definitely not making a positive contribution to the team. But what does that teach him in the process? My philosophy has been that you finish out the season, and then you don’t have to do it again. That said, time is worth something too, and will the world end if my second-grader quits soccer? (I know that I was raised with the “never quit” philosophy, and I’m still unlearning it. Sometimes it really is OK to say something isn’t working!)

    I wish extracurriculars weren’t so hard for him, that he could find his thing and his people. He did well on a noncompetitive swim team last fall, and maybe individual sports are the answer for him. Team sports have this recurring pattern that he can’t seem to break. The exception was a basketball team he played on over the winter. A truly excellent coach made him come alive, but those seem really rare in the rec leagues. Good coaching seems to come with the more competitive leagues, and he’s in the middle of the pack athletically.

    • Anon2 says:

      It’s fine to let him quit, it sounds like a stressor for the whole family. I have heard amazing things about martial arts, especially to help kids learn self-discipline.

    • NewMomAnon says:

      Hugs. How old is he? Make sure this is a conversation, and it might need to be several, in which you help him think through what works and what doesn’t for him in sports. If you think of this in terms of helping him build a lifelong relationship with physical activity, it makes more sense to discontinue this particular opportunity.

      As far as finding the next opportunity – would he qualify for Special Olympics adaptive sports programs? It sounds like he needs a coach who understands how to work with special needs kids, not just a random neighborhood dad who volunteered for it.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      I personally don’t think letting your 7 or 8 year old son quit a team sport that he doesn’t seem to enjoy is going to ruin him or teach him that he can just quit things in life. I also see the value in making him stick with something for a season, but really, it seems like he’s not having fun or getting the lessons that you want this extracurricular to impart (like discipline, accountability, boundaries, a physical outlet).

      Have you asked your son if he’s currently interested in playing soccer this year? At the time of signups he may have wanted to play because he remembered having fun last year, but now it’s less fun for whatever reason (average coach, mean teammates, maybe he just doesn’t like soccer anymore, and social immaturity/being middle of the pack athletically).

      I have never been a team sports person. I played soccer as a kid and liked it fine until I didn’t anymore. I liked tennis, so that could be a good one to try. It could also be that his thing and his people are not sports, period. Maybe it’s robot building, or computer programming, or playing guitar.

    • I quit softball in the middle of the season when I was 8. I had done it the year before, hated it, but signed up again to give it one more chance because my friends were doing it. I seriously hated it, wasn’t good at it, and should never have signed up. I’m glad my parents and coaches let me quit.

    • My mom let me quit basketball in 6th grade because all my friends made the A team and I made the B team…..this is literally the worst reason ever to let a kid quit something. Nevertheless, I grew up to be incredibly dedicated, hardworking, reliable and extremely dependable. I think as long as you don’t make this a habit, your kid will be fine.

    • mascot says:

      I’m going to go the opposite way and say don’t rule out a more competitive program or more disciplined sport if you have a kid that needs solid boundaries. Stricter coaches are less tolerant of kids screwing around, whether its going to play on the playground or harassing each other at practice. In turn, I think it makes it a bit easier for kids to concentrate because there aren’t as many distractions. And good programs for this age should focus on love of the game and sticking with it/learning rather than raw athletic talent.
      My kid is socially immature but has benefitted a lot from more rigid sports programs.

  9. Meg Murry says:

    I just stumbled across this older article I thought readers here would like. It’s by Barrie Hardymon from NPR, who I am huge fan of.

    • AwayEmily says:

      This is wonderful! And I love when she guests on Pop Culture Happy Hour.

    • CPA Lady says:

      I read that when I was pregnant and loved it. I also (secretly) prayed for a c-section and had a breech baby. I was so excited that she and I were on the same page from the beginning.

  10. Marilla says:

    I’d like to get a “chair and a half” type chair for the nursery now that baby 2 is on the way – somewhere I can sit with baby on my lap and 2 year old next to me. Open to gliding/reclining or just a standard chair. Any recommendations for where to look for something comfy and relatively affordable?

  11. Mother's Day Ideas? says:

    I’ve been working crazy hours and want to actually spend time with my 9 month old and husband for mother’s day. I had been thinking about going to the National Zoo (we got a membership for Christmas we haven’t used yet), but I think 90s is too hot for me to enjoy it and on Saturday it is supposed to thunderstorm. Any other ideas for a fun, out of the ordinary but still low-key way to have a bit of family time this weekend with a very active and mobile but not yet walking baby? I’m not a huge fan of restaurants, etc. on holidays, so I think I’m going to ask my husband to make me steak at home one night (not a brunch person either).

    • Anonymous says:

      Do you like swimming – is a pool an option?

      • Mother's Day Ideas? says:

        None of the pools around us open for 2 more weeks unfortunately. And I looked at the the nearby “local” resort (which does have an open pool), but they are booked solid. I may go pick up a kiddie pool for the backyard – the baby loves to swim.

    • Anon in NYC says:

      There’s an art museum near me that has a big open space on one floor where a lot of people bring their kids during bad weather. It’s a way to get out of the house but also be indoors, and where your kid won’t wreck anything! I would never have realized this until another family suggested meeting up there. Maybe one of the museums near you has a similar set up?

      • Mother's Day Ideas? says:

        Thanks. Will look into this.

        • Amelia Bedelia says:

          you are in DC, right? the portrait gallery is awesome for this. the atrium has water feature on the floor to play and it is bright and airy and FREE. we go all the time and my kiddos love it.

      • NewMomAnon says:

        Second this! We have a local art museum that actually has a dedicated space for families with little kiddos.

    • Our local library (and several of the surrounding suburbs) has a huge children’s area with large play spaces. On “busy” weekends they put out these giant foam blocks in a separate area for bigger kids, and then younger kids can play with the puppets and activity boards. You could check yours out as well.

    • Legally Brunette says:

      I’m also in DC. We plan to pack a picnic and go to the Butterfly exhibit at Brookside Gardens (live butterflies). It’s supposed to be lovely, we have never been. There is a children’s garden with a treehouse for the kids to climb, a tortoise pond and tons of other stuff to do (it’s 50 acres, evidently). It opens at 9 am, and we plan to go on the early side to avoid the heat.

      Last year, we packed a picnic (see a trend here? :)) and went to the National Arboretum which was so beautiful.

      • Amelia Bedelia says:

        the butterfly exhibit is back? wonderful!
        it is a very small room, but wonderful butterflies in it. so beautiful. and the gardens are wonderful and great walking fun.

    • Penelope says:

      It sounds like you are near DC. The zoo would be too much for me too! The Museum of the American Indian has awesome kids area that is our go to for rainy days. A 9 month old would love watching the kids playing and there is a small baby area+ really tasty cafeteria. The Botanical Garden is also kid friendly (atrium) and if the weather cooperates you can have a picnic in front of Congress. Navy Yard (specifically Canal Park) might also be good for a 9 month old. You get coffee and bagel at the bagel shop, let the kid splash around in the two inches of water, see the waterfall and big kid wading area, and head home for naptime. Enjoy!

    • Mother's Day Ideas? says:

      Thanks ladies. I’m actually way, way out in the DC suburbs in Loudoun county – the zoo is attractive because we get free parking with our membership, but some of the other stuff downtown is a challenge because of the parking situation. My husband suggested a local coffee shop that has a crawler-friendly play area, so I think we will check that out in the air-conditioning!

    • octagon says:

      The zoo opens really early — 8 a.m.! (And I know that years ago you could actually walk on the trails starting at 6, a friend used to jog there, but I’m not sure if that’s still the case.) If you are so inclined, go early in the day, before the heat really builds.

  12. Anonymous says:

    Happy Mother’s Day ladies!! I hope everyone gets what you want, whether it’s time with your kiddos or time alone for a pedicure or massage :) It’s my first and I’m so excited to get a card ‘from the baby’ and go out to brunch with DH and baby, even if it’s super cliche.

    • Tfor22 says:

      Last Sunday was my birthday, so I don’t think any special treats for me are in the cards. We are going to go see Avengers Infinity War on Sunday afternoon then eat dinner out.

      • Heh, my birthday was Wednesday but I am still making my husband celebrate Mother’s Day. In the future I probably won’t make such a big deal about separate celebrations, but this year is my first. Some years my birthday is actually on Mother’s Day, which was weird when I didn’t have kids (and also sucked for my mom, who lost her celebration since little kids’ birthdays trump everything), but now that I have a little one I am excited for a double celebration those years.

  13. NewMomAnon says:

    Kinda gross question. My head has been itchy lately, and I had a recent haircut; the stylist said it was probably just irritation from my shampoo and suggested a different one. But kiddo (who uses a different shampoo) has also had an itchy head, and I noticed several kids at her preschool scratching their heads at a recent program. How obvious is lice? I imagine a hair stylist would have noticed if I had lice….and I think I would have seen it in kiddo’s hair. But maybe not?

    • anne-on says:

      If you were at the nit stage I can see how a stylist would have missed lice. Have you ever had them before? When they are nits they are REALLY tiny, and they are on the very base of the hair. I had to de-louse my elementary school teacher mother as an adult and I was shocked at how tiny they are and how difficult it is to get them all.
      If you have a lice fairy hair chain near you I’d 1000% do that with you and your daughter.

    • Katala says:

      Pretty sure the stylist would have seen it. If it’s been a couple weeks, there would be nits. Like, a LOT. Especially if your hair is dark, they’re pretty obvious. I’d be surprised if you mentioned it to your stylist and they still missed it. I think they have to do some kind of protocol to clean out the whole shop if they know a client had lice. Hopefully it’s just changing weather making your scalp dry? You could try coconut oil on your scalp (w/ tea tree or lavender if you like) for relief if it’s that. Good luck!

      • NewMomAnon says:

        This is what I was thinking – my head has been itchy for MONTHS. I have had two different stylists give me haircuts, and told both of them that my head was itchy (in part for disclosure in case it was bugs). Both of them checked my scalp; one suggested coconut oil (which hasn’t been helping that much) and the other said it was probably failing to rinse shampoo adequately. Neither one said anything about lice. I haven’t seen any bugs…

        But then kiddo started having an itchy head….and several kids at her school were scratching…and I wondered if maybe bugs were less obvious than I assumed.

    • I don’t think a hair stylist would miss lice.

  14. Does anyone want to rave about their diaper bag? By the end of the summer, I will have a 2 year old and newborn and I don’t think my shoulder Skip Hop will cut it anymore. I am thinking one of the backpack ones would be easier for me. Are the Petunia Pickle Bottom ones worth the money or is the Skip Hop backpack just as good? TIA!

    • AwayEmily says:

      We have a Baggu canvas backpack for our 2-year-old and 3.5-month-old.. It’s maybe a tiny bit smaller than I’d like but on he other hand it keeps us disciplined about making sure it’s cleaned out. And I love how it looks. Definitely a backpack is great but I don’t think you need a diaper-specific one…just get whatever backpack you like (Everlane has some great ones too) and get an internal organizer.

    • Not cheap – but i love my Lily Jade Madeline. it switches easily from shoulder to backpack which was great when chasing a toddler while carrying a newborn.

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