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Posts by Jess A

Here's what we did with out basement. Painting everything white helped to brighten things up the most for us. http://www.flickr.com/photos/47063747@N00/ The only real money we spent was on some paint, a rug, and the foam squares for the floor.
DS was allowed to go to parties and playdates without us as soon as he started Kindergarten. We know all of the parents . . . we're not best friends with them all, but we know them through church and school and other situations and trust them. He was allowed to go to sleepovers starting last year, but only with a couple kids whose parents we know the best. DD is five, and she has drop off playdates this year. They are with two different girls, and we've known their...
We have an unfinished basement which doubles as our main play area. We do have some toys in the kids' rooms and in the living room, but most of the toys are kept downstairs. I've done a lot of work on the basement, and I'm proud of it. Yes, I wish it were finished, but that's not an expense we can afford and the kids seem happy with it. When other kids come to visit, they always want to go down there, so I guess it's a kid friendly place. I did paint the cinderblock...
My son just came out of a Finding Nemo phase. Now it's Toy Story (2, specifically). He's also liked Wall-E and Surf's Up. I don't stress about him watching TV. We do lots of other things, and I attempt to find balance. And I had to laugh when we were outside drawing with sidewalk chalk the other day. I was drawing sea creatures and drew a large jellyfish. He stepped on the top, jumped up and down, and said, "Boing! Boing!" (other Finding Nemo moms should recognize that...
First of all, your party sounds awesome! My son is 9 and wouldn't want to leave! I try to avoid traditional goody bags. My son loves to get them in the moment, but they are forgotten as soon as he gets home. With your theme, I'd instead give a small "gift" to each guest . . . you could probably do it for what you'd spend on bags of stuff. You can still put them in a bag . . . you could use brown lunch bags and draw different bugs/fish on them. Here's what I would...
I've been letting DS pick out his clothes lately, and that has made the process MUCH easier. Part of my cringes at some of his selections, but I'm so proud he's taken ownership of this--and he is very excited at picking out his own things. Here's an example of his style. So far it's been helping. Now shoes and coats are another story . . .
As a parent, I try to pick my battles wisely. Brushing teeth is a battle we choose to fight--and it sometimes seems as if that's what it always is. Thankfully, DS has two older siblings that brush their teeth routinely twice a day. He likes to go in with them. In the morning, I let him "brush" and then I follow with a swipe or two. In the evening, I let him start and then I do a good brushing. Usually, this means he's in my lap and fighting and screaming, but I do it...
DS is 26 months old. He nurses about 6-8 times a day. He usually sleeps through the night, but sometimes will wake 1 or 2 times, but that is rare. We co-sleep, so he nurses for a minute or two and goes right back to sleep.
When my oldest (now 9), was a toddler, he lived on what the pediatrician called the "great white diet" . . . plain pasta, vanilla yogurt, cheese, and grapes. At his three year check up, the doctor told us to even give him hot dogs or nuggets to get him to eat. It was a slow process, but now he eats pretty much anything (but he doesn't like a lot of veggies or walnuts). He'll try anything, and eats pretty much non-stop. My two year old had a vitamin for breakfast this...
I leave it up to my son. He loves to build the kits and then play with them, take them apart, and build them again. I've asked him if he wants to mix them, but he prefers to keep them separate--each set of instructions and extra pieces in a bag. Most of his kits are kept built and on display so he can play with them. We do also have a big bin of randomly mixed LEGOs that anyone can use and build with. Duplos are mixed too (people and blocks), but are in their own bin. My...
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