Category Archives: Toddlers

Grant’s Walking

By: Davida Grant

Baby boy is on the move. My complacent “angel” is no more. Grant wants to get out of my arms, on the floor, and explore EVERYTHING.

I love just sitting back and watching him as he discovers something new. He focuses in on the object and really takes it in visually. Then, he reaches aggressively for it, as if someone is on his heels ready to take it from him. Then of course he tries to put it in his mouth, or smell it. It’s so cute. He repeats these steps over and over with each new object. His biggest joy is when the object makes a sound, whether on its own, because he’s shaking it, or because he’s smashing it on the floor. His face lights up, his eyes dance. His perfect smile makes my heart skip a beat, still. I’m so loving my mobile boy. I can’t wait to see what he does next.

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Fun with the Family “Just Being Regular”

me costco Costco fam

When you have kids, the weekends seem to take on a life of their own. You’re up at the crack of dawn – just like during the work week – tackling the myriad of activities for the day. But every now and then, a weekend comes along where there’s nothing you absolutely “have” to do. The laundry is done, the kids’ sports, dance and other activities are on pause, and the house is clean (or at least presentable). These are special times indeed. When they happen, my favorite thing to do is round up the posse, get out the house, and go with the flow. We did just that a couple weekends ago and had a blast doing what I’ve coined “just being regular.”

We hopped in the truck and decided to swing by one of our favorite spots, Costco. It was mid-afternoon on a Saturday and surprisingly Costco wasn’t overly crowded. We took our time looking at all the specials and sampled everything in sight. The kids loved it! They didn’t want to leave. We then stopped by Union Market to pick up my favorite bottle of wine and to get a few more goodies. We tried the empanadas, which were yummy, and sat and took in the sights. It was such a carefree outing. Time seemed to move at a glacier pace. Can’t remember the last time I had such a thought. Finally, we stopped by my favorite bakery, Grassroots, and grabbed a scone or two. The white chocolate and craisin scone is simply to die for. We ended the day in front of the tube watching movies, singing songs, and playing games. It was EVERYTHING! I wouldn’t trade these moments for anything.

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Report Cards are in. Why was I so nervous?

Simone at school

By:  Davida Grant

My preschooler, Simone, got her first report card this week, or rather I should say the hubby and I got it.  I was a bundle of nerves before the parent-teacher meeting.  I really want baby girl to do well and being the overachiever, straight-A student I was, I was fearful that I would not respond well if Simone’s teacher gave her less than favorable or even mediocre scores.  I know this sounds a little crazy because she’s only three, but hear me out.  Simone had serious medical issues her first year of life which impaired her ability to verbally express any sound until she was 1-years old.  Since then, she’s been in speech therapy classes (thanks Stacey Raina, a Brookland area DC mom) and at home, we’ve put a lot of effort into developing her pre-literacy skills.  We apprised her teachers of her issues and Simone has been consistently working with a school speech therapist.  Her communication skills have improved dramatically.  While I would expect Simone’s report card to take into account her communication issues, those issues should not be used against her.  I’m not having that, PERIOD. Simone, from a cognitive perspective, is on track (she’s had multiple tests in this area) so I fully expect the majority of her scores to reflect that she is on target.

The hairs on my arms (nope, I don’t wax those) were literally standing at attention when I sat down for the meeting.  I braced myself as her teachers (she has two) slid over the white envelope containing her report card.  You could hear a pin drop.  WHY WEREN’T THEY TALKING!  As I opened it, the sound of my heartbeat was pounding in my ears.  I know this sounds overly dramatic, but it’s the truth.  My hubby stared at me, not knowing which Vida Marie he’d see if I didn’t like those scores.  I know he was silently praying, Lord please let Simone’s scores be good AND Lord, please don’t let my wife embarrass me.  I marvel at how that man deals with me, but I digress.  I quickly glanced at the report card, focusing on her scores.  I took a deep breath, and the meeting began.

Her scores were a mixed bag.  She scored “on target” ( a 3 out of 5 rating) in most areas (YAY), but received a “1” and a “2” in a few.  As her teachers explained the “low” scores, I did my best to remain calm and focused.  After all, the purpose of the meeting was to identify any areas of concern and that’s valuable.  So, how did I do?  Well, surprisingly I took it in stride.  My hubby was so impressed with me!!!!  He was positive I was going to grill them. Thinking back on it, there was something about her primary teacher’s demeanor.  It was soothing.  Somehow, she made me feel like everything was okay.  I say hats off to her because I know I can be a piece of work, especially when it comes to my babies.  I heard and more importantly I received her message.  Simone is generally on track and only needs a little more help in a couple areas.  We agreed that there were additional steps the hubby and I could take at home to reinforce the classroom learning, and they agreed to apprise us on a fairly routine basis regarding her progress.  That’s a win-win for everybody. I couldn’t ask for anything more.

How was your child’s first report card?  Feel free to brag.  I love celebrating excellence.

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Filed under Education, Toddlers

Play Dates: What are the Rules?

By:  Davida Grant

My daughter Simone is a rock star!  Her classmates love her and apparently talk about her all the time at home.  Go figure.  Now, I’ve been asked to have a play date.  Ut oh.

I’ll be honest.  Over the last couple of years, I’ve escaped the “play date” with moms I don’t know. We were fortunate to have a nanny until Simone was two and she took Simone to all the play dates. I’m probably making way too much of this, I mean really what’s the big deal.  Can I be honest?  It just seems a little weird to get together with people I don’t know AT ALL to let our kids play together, especially when they see and play with each other five days a week at school and during after care.  But, seeing at this is the trend, I guess I should get on board.

This is my idea of a play date.  I get together with family or a friend (possibly another mom with whom I’ve had a fair amount of contact) that has a child close in age to Simone.  We typically meet at one of our homes and not only let the kids get loose, but WE GET LOOSE.  Yep, a glass of wine or two is typically involved.  So it’s really a good time for all. This formula won’t work with “stranger” moms, because I’m not too keen on them coming to my house or going to theirs.  That means wine is out.  Bummer.  Even if we decide to meet elsewhere, can we really kick back while the kids are playing and have REAL TALK, if you get my drift. Uh noooooo.  We’ll end up having superficial, meaningless chatter.  What’s fun about that?  I work long hours during the week, and because I’m a “Professional” at work I can NEVER completely be Vida Marie.  On the weekends, I want to let my hair down.  Not happening at a “play date” with strangers.

Maybe I’m looking at this all wrong.  Maybe I’m not supposed to have fun.  Maybe a “play date” is just another task we mommies have to endure for the betterment of our munchkins.  So tell me mommies, what are the rules?  Do I need a mental overhaul? How lonnnnnnnnng should a play date last?  Help!

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Filed under Mothers, Parenting Trends, Toddlers

Fantastic Car Seat Coat for Toddlers

By:  Davida Grant

It’s rare that I find a product that I love.  I absolutely ADORE the Cozywoggle car seat coat.

This past weekend, I attended the Femworking Conference for small businesses and bloggers.  I can’t say enough about the conference.  It was AMAZING!  But in addition to all the great information I received that hopefully will allow me to take this blog to another level (fingers crossed),  I discovered Cozywoggle. Here it is.

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What I love about this coat is that it reduces the bulkiness my son Grant feels when I put him in his car seat with a standard winter coat.  Grant hates being mushed, which happens when he wears a bulky coat and I have to “fit” him into his car seat.  Not to mention, his other coats make him hot while he’s riding in the car.  Grant takes after his father.  He hates being hot and gets fired up whenever he is and I mean FIRED up!  So how does it work? I put the jacket on Grant and then unzip the sides of the jacket from the bottom all the way to the wrist areas of the jacket.  Then I lift up the backside of the jacket and put Grant into his car seat.  His back rests directly against the lining of the car seat and his arms and chest remain covered with the coat.  In essence, I virtually remove the back of his coat so that he can lay in his car seat as if he isn’t wearing a coat at all. This makes Grant immensely more comfortable.  It allows me to keep the car seat straps in one position so I don’t have to keep adjusting them based on what he’s wearing.  Talk about a time saver in the mornings.  Yay!  Check my buddy out wearing his coat.

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Are there other things I like? Yep. It’s lightweight, it’s passed crash testing, and it’s also relatively easy to maneuver the zippers and back of the coat when I opt to place him in the car seat while inside my vehicle  (easiest to do it in the house though).   Bottom line, this jacket is cute, comes in great colors, is available up to a size 5T and most importantly keeps my little buddy warm and irritation-free when he’s riding in his car seat. I even bought one for my 3-year old, Simone.

Maybe Cozywoggle should hire me to do PR.  Seriously though, I love this coat!

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Filed under Baby Products I Love, Infants, Toddlers