a letter to my child’s daycare…

From that first day, and every day I am dropping off the most important thing in my life, my child. That is my heart walking through that door and sitting down to breakfast or to play with his friends. That is my whole world and I leave him with you.

Some days it takes all I have not to hold back tears as I leave him in your care. Some days I worry that maybe he is not happy there and should be home with me, that I’ve got this whole parenting thing all wrong. Some days I skip away because finally getting some time to myself is oh so necessary after some of the mornings we have had. And sometimes it takes everything I have not to run back in and give him one more hug before I go.

Please be good to him, he is my sweetheart. Please don’t let him cry too long when he is upset, please comfort him when he is sad or not feeling well. Please teach him right when he is wrong. Please help him to grow into the sweet and caring boy I know he can become.

Please tell me all about his day. Tell me about his interactions with other children, songs, games, and stories he enjoyed. Tell me all of this because I miss every one of these moments when I am gone. The mornings, nights, and weekends go by in a blur and I worry that you know more about my child than I do. Please tell me that he is happy, laughing, and smiling. Please tell me that he is ok without me.

Everyday, I leave him with you. And everyday I question my decision to do so.  Please let me know that I am doing the right thing. Please take good care of my heart.

A Review of the Boon Snug...

This past weekend while at lunch at one of our favorite barbecue places in Atlanta, we tried out the Boon Snug - a silicone lid that will fit on any cup.  I love the idea of throwing one of these lids in your diaper bag and turning any cup into a sippy cup with a spout or straw.  We have been transitioning Mason from spouts to straws these past few weeks so I opted for the straw version.  My advice, only buy the straw lid option if your child is ready for a straw.  The straw easily pops in and out and my son thought is was quite a fun game to pull the straw out quickly spraying milk everywhere.  Also, even with the straw, when turned upside down milk leaks out from where the straw is placed.  Mason also chewed and flattened out one of the straws within a few seconds.  While I love the concept and know we will get a ton of use out of it later on...my 22 month old was just not ready for a straw that isn't welded to the cup with a leak proof contraption.  I will definitely be trying out the version of this lid that has a spout, since I love the mobility of this product, and hopefully the straw will get more use down the road...     The Boon Snug is available at Babies R Us

(please note that while this is a sponsored post, the words and review are all my own)

Need the Perfect Holiday Gift? Give the Gift of Reading

I have recently had the amazing opportunity to collaborate with Bookroo - a monthly book subscription service helping me to build Mason's library.  I asked one of the founders of Bookroo, Jane Tanner, to write a guest post for little bean baby now that the holiday season is upon us and we are all looking for that perfect gift...

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Written by:  Jane Tanner

With the holiday season just around the corner, the tingling anticipation of friends, family, parties, presents, and celebrations is becoming ever more tangible. Finding the perfect gift for everyone on your holiday list can be stressful and intimidating. (I know because I’m one of those very type A people who’s been agonizing what I should gift my family for three weeks already-- don’t worry, I’m almost done!) It can be a struggle to find something that’s heartfelt, and meaningful, and useful, and (in the case of gifting to kids) will be appreciated by parents and children alike. But it doesn’t have to be. Enter Bookroo.


I was lucky enough to connect with Megan about a month or so ago, and she’s been gracious enough to already give you a little preview of what Bookroo is, but in case you missed it, Bookroo helps foster a love of reading in children by making the experience of receiving children’s books an exciting one for children and an affordable and convenient one for parents. Win-win-win.

Bookroo creates excitement around reading by helping children to associate the thrill and anticipation of unwrapping surprise gifts with reading, and by exposing them to new and different books that they can be proud to have in their very own personal collections. Basically, each month a box containing either 3 board or 2 picture books (each individually wrapped!) arrives with a handwritten note.

My three-year-old nephew can often be found pushing a toy wheelbarrow filled with books around the house, but recently his mom noticed that in addition to the wheelbarrow, he was also clutching several books to his chest on his journey through the house. When she asked him what was so special about those books, he told her that those were the ones that had come all wrapped up in his Bookroo box. Weeks later, he had a special attachment to those books in particular because of the experience he’d had with them.

The holidays are often a time when presents abound, so it’s a particularly important time to send the signal to our children that reading is important, and books are fun and worthy of being gifted. They aren’t a boring or second rate gift, their magical stories are a gift that can be enjoyed again and again. Cliche perhaps, but true.

Give the gift of reading this holiday season. Give the children in your life access to the printed word, and the opportunity to fall in love with it. A Bookroo subscription is a gift that will remind them of you and your love every time they read the books that have come thus far, and every month a new box arrives. It truly is the gift that keeps on giving.

Ready to gift your first Bookroo box? Feel free to this link to get $4 off from Megan’s first post!

brunch with my baby..

Heading out to restaurants with a 15 month old is an extremely exhausting adventure where I am constantly making sure he A: not standing up in his high chair, B: not grabbing everything off the table, or C: throwing all of is food on the ground.   Needless to say, I need to be on from the minute we enter the restaurant to the second we leave.  Bound and determined to ensure that my child is not the crazy, messy, out of control, loud child in the restaurant.  Restaurant High chairs have become a nightmare for us  They are filthy most of the time, the straps rarely work, and even when he is strapped in, he manages to houidini himself out of it.  

When I was asked to try out the Bumbo Multi Seat - I happily abliged.  Dying for any relief from the high chair hell we have been living in.  So, this morning we finally ventured out to brunch at our neighborhood go-to, J. Christophers with Mr. Mason and our new Bumbo Multi-Seat.

Getting it strapped to the chair took a matter of seconds and once Mason was in I was pleasantly surprised at how calm he was hanging out in the Bumbo.  He did better sitting right up a the table with us in his own "chair" and he didn't twist and turn around like he usually would in the high chair due to the straps on the Bumbo keeping him contained.

Needless to say we had a somewhat relaxing brunch and I can honestly say that we won't be leaving the house without the Bumbo Multi Seat anytime soon.  Love the versatility of bringing it to restaurants, grandparents, and vacations.  It is super lightweight and easy to carry and I have already considered packing away the giant highchair and only using this more compact option in our dining room at home.  

(please note that while this is a sponsored post, the words and review are all my own)

a love of reading...

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I will never forget Mason's one month appointment.  The pediatrician stressed starting a bedtime routine that included a bath and a book before bedtime.  I remember looking at my 8lb son that could barely hold up his head thinking how in the world could we possibly read a book to this tiny thing...but we did... every. single. night.  

He barely noticed the book was even there at first, but as time went on his love for books grew and grew.  He started to put his face real close up to the pictures and would study every detail.  Then he started to turn the pages himself.  And now with the peekaboo or touch and feel books, he knows exactly what part of the book to open, touch, turn, push, and scratch.  

There are certain books that he snuggles up to me immediately when he sees the cover and and other books he sits up tall and straight so he can interact with every page.  We have started to put books in his bed each night so he can read before falling asleep or when he wakes up in the morning.  We read at the beach, during diaper changes, on airplanes, in the car, his stroller, wherever we go, we bring books.  He doesn't just love books, he is enthralled by them.  

I was thrilled to stumble upon Bookroo, a monthly children's book subscription that will help grow Mason's library.  We have a TON of books already but not too many make it into the nightly rotation so I am always looking for more books Mason might love.  Luckily Bookroo does the work for me, carefully selecting the books and sending them to us monthly to nurture his love of reading in the hopes of finding new books we will all love to read each night.  You can choose between picture books and board books and if you receive a book you already have in your library, send them a picture of you gifting the book to someone else and they will take $5 off your next month...pretty awesome...

Beyond just being an amazing concept, the experience from the website to the hand wrapped books that arrive perfectly packaged is fantastic.  And I am definitely going to be gifting a Bookroo subscription or two for birthdays and holidays because I know a lot of moms like me who might go crazy if their child receives one more toy...books are so much easier to clean up at the end of the day...

I hope Mason always loves to read the way he does today.  I hope that even when he is older he still can't wait for the next book, the next page, the next word.  And I kind of hope he always wants to snuggle while we read our books before bedtime...

our 1st month of Bookroo!

our 1st month of Bookroo!

I have partnered with Bookroo to offer a discount to my readers of $4 off your subscription using the below link...it is so worth a try!

http://bit.ly/1Ngdpik

(please note that while this is a sponsored post, the words and review are all my own)

I had no idea...

I had no idea how full my heart would feel the moment you were born, the first time you smiled, the first time you really hugged me, and now the sweet times when you pat me on the back.  My entire throat closes up and I do everything I can to hold back tears.  It such a big crazy world and you make it easy to feel so lucky.

Mason at 8 months old...

Mason at 8 months old...

I had no idea how much you would sleep those first few weeks and then when the sleeping ended how much I would wish the days of sleeping all the time would return.

I had no idea that breastfeeding would be so hard but so rewarding at the same time.  I had no idea that switching from breastmilk to formula to whole milk would be easier on you than it was on me.

I had no idea that you could be so funny, so sweet, so full of laughter.  I had no idea that you could laugh so hard while you were crawling that your knees would buckle and you would have to lay flat on the ground doubled over in laughter for a minute before being able to get back up.  

I had no idea how cute you could be.  Every day when you get home from school I ask you "did you get cuter today?"...and I am seriously asking you that because it is seriously true.  I had no idea how cute you could be.

I had no idea how my much my heart would ache when you cried or how quickly I would run to scoop you up and hold you when you fell.   

I had no idea that later on you would learn to cry out when you needed something or to get our attention and that you would be able to turn the tears on and off so quickly.  I had no idea how funny it would be sometimes when you would get upset over absolutely nothing...seeing your entire face scrunch up made us laugh out loud so many times...I had no idea you could be so adorable even when you are upset.

I had no idea how easy it would be to find a balance between working and being with you.  I had no idea how much you would love preschool and how much I would love work...during maternity leave I would have said or done anything just to stay at home with you indefinitely but it all worked out for the best in the end and I am so glad we have found the balance.

I had no idea that you would have eyelashes I could only dream about...

I had no idea that we would have to put diapers on while you were standing because laying down is something you are way too busy to deal with.

I had no idea how much your Dad could love you.  You two are best friends and sometimes I just sit and listen to your endless fits of laughter and the loud sounds of toys crashing and banging in the other room.  We are so lucky to have him.  

I had no idea that sometimes I would just want to sit and watch you...playing, eating, crawling, sleeping...I could easily sit and watch you all day.

I had no idea how much you would need me, and in turn how much I needed you.

I had no idea that we could go into your room to wake you in the morning and you would be snoring with your face smashed into the mattress and would push us away for a few more minutes of sleep, there are times when you are so obviously my child.

I had no idea how fast you would grow from a tiny baby to an independent big boy...I had no idea time could go by this quickly.

I had no idea that switching to the one year old room at preschool meant a week of crying and not sleeping...for both of us.

I had no idea how much your grandparents could love you and want to know every little thing about you...to them you are such an amazing gift that has filled their lives with so much happiness.

I had no idea I could love anything as much as I love you.  There are days where I feel like my life was just practice up until you came along...the reason I am here on this earth, began with you...

the only sippy cup you will ever need... (and switching to whole milk)

I was terrified of switching from bottles to sippy cups and bought what seems like a hundred different sippy cups that Mason rejected or "did ok" with (what they told me at preschool).  A Mom from preschool recommended the NUK sippy cup and Mason went from bottles to only sippy cups in about 4 days with the NUK.  I was so excited to put away all the bottles and bottle parts.  Now we have 5 of these and just upgraded to the 10 ounce version for the mornings when he has been drinking a little more milk...

The switch to whole milk was an easy one for us that I stressed about for weeks.  The key was to mix in a little more whole milk each day over the course of about 4-5 days then suddenly it is just whole milk which I continued to warm up for him for another day or two.  Then to get him to drink the cold whole milk I gave him food first at each meal than the cold milk and he was sold because he was already full from the food so the milk didn't matter to him.  

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