Tag Archives: love

Packing for a Move with a Toddler

This is part 2 of my Moving with a Toddler series, you can read Part 1 – Preparing Your Toddler for a Move, by clicking here.
Packing for a Move

Packing with Your Toddler

Like most toddlers Emmett is super curious. He sees something and he immediately wants to touch it and investigate, but also like most toddlers, the most appealing items are those that are dangerous or off limits. I don’t want to stifle his curiosity, and with packing, so many fun new items come out of hiding. So in an effort to make everyone’s lives easier and less stressful, I’ve come up with a list of things you can do to making packing with your toddler as easy as possible.

Tips for Packing with Your Toddler

  1. Don’t wait – start early! Packing with a toddler around is obviously going to take more time, so don’t give yourself any more stress by waiting to the last minute. As soon as you have boxes to pack with, start!
  2. Get your toddler involved in a fun activity before you start packing. What we did with Emmett was to set him up with a toy he really likes, or with paper and crayons, this way he could be in the same room with us as we packed but also stay out of trouble, while we were pulling things out of the cupboards or closets. It worked pretty well, as long as his interests held on to the item he was playing with, he was content to just be in the same room with us.
  3. Allow your toddler to assist with some simple packing. What I try to sometimes do is work on packing items that I can get Emmett’s help with. So for instance, we had loads of books that needed be packed, and since books aren’t really breakable, this was a fantastic thing for Emmett to help with. He really was helpful, too! He would grab 2 or 3 books off the shelf, hand them to me and I’d place them in the box. He loved helping and had THE biggest smile on his face the whole time.
  4. Pack your child’s toys last. We’ve been slowly packing things up, but we haven’t gone near any of E’s toys. Despite us telling Emmett what we’re doing along the way, seeing us pack up his beloved toys could get pretty scary for him, so instead his toys stay out. There are so many other areas to focus on, that his toys can absolutely be last on the list.
  5. Save delicate items for when your toddler is sleeping. There are likely hundreds of items in your house that are things your little one shouldn’t touch, save those pieces for when your toddler is sleeping. This can be hard, because it may be one of the few things left to pack, but it will help preserve your sanity if you just wait. We haven’t had to use this one with Emmett yet, we have plenty to pack that is not delicate, but I’m sure the time will come when we need to put this one into practice.
  6. Keep dangerous items out of reach. Let’s be honest, when you’re preoccupied packing or cleaning, your attention isn’t 100% on your toddler. To keep your little one safe, keep those dangerous or poisonous items out of reach.
  7. Make it a learning experience. While you’re boxing up items that are new to your toddler, name them before placing them in the box. Toddlers are like little sponges, so it is very likely that they’ll absorb that information quickly and learn a new word in the process.

Moving can be such a stressful time, but with the right amount of planning and pre-thought, a stressful time can turn into more enjoyable experience.

Your turn!

What are some of your tips for packing with a baby, toddler or older child around?

Have you moved with a child? I’d love to hear about your experience and learn from you! Share in the comments below!


Old School Blogging – Valentine’s Day Edition

We’re throwin’ it waaaay back! We’re doing some Old School Valentine’s Blogging today, folks.

valentine's old school blogging

In celebration of the beautiful, love-filled day that is Valentine’s Day, I decided to connect with Miss Elaine-ous Life and  her Valentine’s blogging prompts.

First question on our Valentine’s journey back in time is…

How do you typically celebrate Valentine’s Day?
We keep it simple. When I was in high school I always thought I wanted something grand and majestic, but the few years I had that with my ex, it just didn’t feel right. Now with Seamus, we’ve always done dinner or lunch out and sometimes we exchange gifts. This year, we’ll be going out for lunch and then just spending the time together as a family. Nothing over the top or extravagant, just the way we like it.

Do you like to get A)chocolates B) flowers  C) a sweet card or D) ALL OF THE ABOVE?
Flowers and a sweet card work for me, but I don’t even need those. Extra kisses, hugs and love are good enough of a gift for me.

Would you consider yourself a “cuddler”?  If not, would you at least cuddle on Valentine’s Day?
Yes, yes YES – I am a cuddler through and though. I love laying in the crook of Seamus’ arm and I love when Emmett curls up on the couch to watch TV, or to read one of his books. Cuddling is an activity for the whole year through!

What is your favorite movie about love or with a love story?
Okay, so I’m going to get really cheesy on yah… The Notebook, 100%. I know that’s probably one of the most cheesy love movies of all time but I just love it.


Do you believe in “love at first sight”?  Did it happen to you?
I do believe in it, and I guess it kind of happened to me. I met Seamus online, at Match.com. I’ve told the story on my blog before, but I’ll tell it again. I had joined Match for 1 month, and told myself that if I hadn’t met someone after a month that I was okay being single for awhile longer. My subscription expired. The next day I received a notification that I had an email from a Seamus (which I thought was pronounced Sea-mis, but is actually pronounced Shay-mus). I logged into the site but in order to view the email, I had to rejoin for another month, something told me to go ahead and do it. I jumped, joined and fell pretty instantly “in-love” with him. We emailed back and forth a couple times, and chatted via phone so that when we finally met I felt that I knew him pretty well. The rest, as they say, is history! 😀

Do you believe love can conquer all things?
I believe that it can truly help you cope with so much in life. A very difficult time can be made easier by having someone, whom you deeply care about, to lean on.

Love this face!

Love this face!

What is one of the main things you love about your S.O.(significant other)?
Oh goodness, just one?! His intelligence. I swear that he knows something about everything. I could mention something that I’ve just learned about and Seamus will be able to tell me some deeper details about it. It amazes me frequently!

If you could have the perfect Valentine date what would you and your loved one do?
A night in Stowe, VT, at Stone Hill Inn, where we honeymooned. It was one of the most romantic and stress-free weeks of my life and I would go back there, even for just a night, in a heartbeat.

A pic of us on our honeymoon.

A pic of us on our honeymoon.

Tell me about your first crush!
Yikes! My first crush? This is so embarrassing. My first crush, that I can think of was for Buffalo of the children’s music group Buffalo and Brandy. If you don’t know who they are, I’ll help you out. Click on this link to go to their page. They came to my school, or a local school in the area and I was instantly smitten. LOL We got posters of them and I hung one on the door of my bedroom, every morning I’d get up and kiss my fingers and then put them up to Buffalo’s face. (Sidenote: I’m sitting here writing this and cracking myself up. Kids are so crazy!) There were others after that one, but I’m pretty sure he was my very first.

Do you have any embarrassing or horror dating stories?
Not entirely terrible. I mean the guy was nice and he did treat me to a meal, but it was kind of a disaster from the moment I met him. We didn’t hit it off and the whole meal was awkward because I wasn’t sure what to talk about. We ended the night with a hug, and didn’t really speak again. Oh well.

Favorite flower?
Calla Lilies. White ones are my favorite, but burnt orange ones are a close second.


What’s the first type of chocolate you hope for when you reach into a box of chocolates?
Chocolate stuffed with peanut butter. Mmmmm

Favorite love song?
Our wedding song, by far. I Will Follow You Into the Dark by Death Cab for Cutie.

What is the best breakup song?
I Can’t Make You Love Me – Bonnie Raitt

Favorite celebrity couple?
Hmmm…I’m not really into big celebrities, but I would probably have to say Ellen and Portia, or Ben Affleck and Jennifer Garner. They seem like two really strong couples.

Overall, are you pro- or anti- Valentine’s Day?
Pro! I don’t care what anyone says, I love me some love and Valentine’s Day is a great day to show some extra love. I do agree that we should show the ones we care about love all the time, but it never hurts to put it out there more heavily once a year. Plus, Emmett’s hugs and kisses are pretty darn wonderful!

If someone did that “Say Anything” boombox thing outside your window, would you be into it, or call the police?
I’ve never seen the movie, but I just watched the clip. I would be totally into it. Why not? Anyone doing something to express their love for you, in any way, is a good thing in my book.

First thing you notice about the objects of your affection?
This is so strange, but teeth. I can’t explain it, but I always notice a person’s teeth before anything else. Second, would be whether they had any sense of humor. I could never have dated a fuddy duddy – I need someone who can laugh at pretty much everything, just like I do.

What’s the best thing you’ve ever gotten for Valentine’s Day?
I don’t even know. I’ve gotten some lovely flowers over the years, some delicious strawberries from Sharri’s Berries, and an adorable Vermont Teddy Bear that was a pregnant mommy bear (similar), when I was newly pregnant. Overall though, while I do like gifts, what’s more important is that we are kind and loving to each other, and we pretty much have this one in the bag, so I win!

Your turn!

I want to hear from you – Are you pro or anti Valentine’s day?
Do you do anything special on V-day?

Be sure to stop on over and link-up with Miss Elaine-ous and Tamara Camera.


PS: Check out my post on Valentine’s Activities for Toddlers! 

14 Valentine’s Day Activities for Toddlers

Valentine’s Activities for Toddlers


I know to some Valentine’s day can be hokie or some may even call it a “Hallmark Holiday,” but I don’t agree, I think it’s a day to give extra kisses, hugs and cuddles to the ones you love. Granted, you’ll find that I give extra kisses, hugs, and cuddles on a normal day, but it’s fun to go over the top. To get our house ready for Valentine’s Day, I started shifting through Pinterest for some fun activities for toddlers, and I figured, since I am looking for ideas, others probably are too.

So without further adieu…

14 Valentine’s Day Activities for Toddlers

(I chose 14, because Valentine’s Day is on the 14th) 🙂

Heart Shaped Pancakes

Why not start Valentine’s Day right off with some delicious pancakes in the shape of hearts?!

Transferring Pink Pom Poms

I love this idea from Natural Beach Living, Kimberly’s entire post is full of all sorts of Valentine’s Day Activities but my favorite is separating the poms poms from one container to another. I love that this works on sensory skills, visual skills and tactile skills. Emmett would get so much out of this!

Valentine’s Water and Sponge Play

Emmett is a very tactile baby, so touching the wet sponges and splashing in the water would be a perfect activity for his little hands.

Valentine’s Tissue Paper Suncatchers

Seriously, this idea is brilliant! Angela from Teaching Mama, cut out hearts from contact paper and let your kids stick tissue paper to it. There’s almost no mess! This is the perfect apartment toddler activity.

Microwave Puffy Paint

This activity would require some help from mom, but I would be thrilled to oblige. It looks like so much fun!

Word or Alphabet Love Bugs

Emmett is slowly getting better and better with words, I want to help grow this and his literacy. Sitting down with all the letters of the alphabet on hearts and then gluing love words together is a great idea.

Potato Stamping

When I was a kid, one of my favorite things to do was use potatoes as stampers. It was always so much fun creating different shapes and then using them to make pretty art pictures.

Heart Prints

Take those chubby, cute toddler feet and trace them, cut them out and make a butterfly out of them.

Valentine’s Day Sponge Painting

Emmett loves to paint, when we decorated a birdhouse for my mom, he was in heaven. Being able to take full sponges and not just brushes and dip them into paint, sounds like a toddler’s dream come true.

Freestyle Valentines

Sometimes just drawing or cutting out a heart, and letting your kid go to town is the way to go. We did this with Emmett in the picture above, he loved it and it kept him occupied for a good long while.

Hand print (or foot print) Valentine Card

Another activity for those chubby little hands or feet. Take some paint and let them smoosh their hand into it, and then place against a paper plate with some loving words above or below it.

Message in a Bottle

This looks like a great activity to create and give as a present. Decorate the bottle, put a love message inside and then give it to the gift recipient.

Valentine’s Sensory Play

This looks like it would be a lot of fun – just make sure that if you do this with a younger toddler, who likes putting things in his or her mouth, you choose items that are safe for them.

Heart Doily Shirt

I am such a sap, I love holiday themed outfits for my boy. I did get him a fun one from Old Navy but this would be a blast for us to make together and for another Valentine’s themed shirt for him to wear.

I am so so excited to get Emmett involved with all this Valentine’s day fun!

Your turn!

What activities do you enjoy doing with your children? 

Have you done any of the above activities with your kids? How did things work out?


Weekly Wishes – My Goals for the Week Ahead

Happy Weekly Wishes!

Weekly Wishes is a link-up started by Melyssa from The Nectar Collective. It is a place where you can post and share you wishes and goals for the week ahead on your blog, Facebook page, Twitter account, etc and then link it up on Melyssa’s blog. I LOVE doing this because it holds me accountable for the week ahead. I’ve shared my goals with the world (through my blog) and I know people will read and wonder whether I stuck to my goals. It definitely keeps me honest!

Happy Monday! It’s going to be a busy busy week for me, I have loads of meetings and I need to get ready for my vacation next week, but I am thrilled to have off. We’re not going anywhere, it’s a total stay-cation, but you better believe I am looking forward to it.

We had a really great weekend, productive and with plenty of time for relaxation – it could not have been better.


Last Week’s Wishes 

My first goal from last week was to stick to my meal plan and workout plan. We stuck to the meal plan without any difficulty, but considering I didn’t really set up a schedule for myself to workout, I had nothing to stick to. This week, I’m ready!

Next up, was to keep up with my chores throughout the week. This was a success!

I wanted to complete the book I was reading, A Story Unfinished. Another success! I finished it up and will be writing my review soon.

Finally, I wanted to make time start working on the class I signed-up for – I haven’t yet started but I should have time to get rolling on it this week.

 This Week’s Wishes

  • Keep up with my chores. This one always allows for more relaxation throughout the weekend, so I want to keep it up.
  • Stick to my workout schedule that I set up yesterday.
  • Finally, next weekend, I want to get up closer to my normal wake-up time. This weekend I woke up later, around 7, but I would like to get up around 5:30. I would like to get some stuff down around the house before everyone wakes up.

That about does it! Be sure to link-up with Melyssa and The Nectar Collective.

The Nectar Collective

Your turn!

What are some of your goals for the coming week?

Odds and Ends

Just a few odds and ends that I want to catch you all up on.

Happy Saturday, all! I have a few odds and ends that I wanted to make sure I shared out on the blog, none of them are really long enough for their own post, so I’m just going to combine it into one big update.

  1. I’ve been live with the new blog design for about 2 weeks now and I am finally getting the hang of all the different pages, and widgets I now have. With the new blog design I’ve been able to set up a sponsorship program through Passionfruit Ads. What this means, is that if you like my blog and would like to have your ad placed on my sidebar, you can do so by clicking on the Sponsor Me! at the top of my blog (or click here). All of my monthly stats are listed there, so you know what you’re paying for, but if you have any additional questions, please feel free to email or comment.
  2. I also now have a blog button. Yay! You can find it on my right hand panel. If you love my blog and want to grab my button, please feel free to do so. This is MUCH appreciated!button250
  3. I was recently contacted by Mark of Kairos Life, they’ve created this fantastic website where you can save digital memories and heirlooms, and have them set to release on a specific date, essentially a digital time capsule. I’m really excited to share with you, that Kairos Life is currently in “Beta” testing and is offering my readers the ability to have a free membership, simply by signing-up to assist with some of the testing. Stop on over today and sign-up, who doesn’t love free stuff?
  4. A friend of mine recently opened Unforgettable Underdogs Dog Rescue, they are a volunteer run, foster-based, no-kill dog rescue serving the Wisconsin area. Since they are just newly opened, they are working hard to raise money for any medical costs or supplies that may come up. If you are able to, why not stop over and donate and help save a dog’s life. Also, be sure to visit their Facebook page and like Unforgettable Underdogs Dog Rescue.

Alright! That’s about it, I think I’m all caught up now – I hope you’re all enjoying your weekends.

Your turn!

Have you come across any new websites giving out free trials, or any new places to donate?


Traditions – What Makes Our Family Whole

Traditions are so very important to me, and this time of year is ripe with them.

traditions-3Wikipedia describes traditions as, “A tradition is a belief or behavior passed down within a group or society with symbolic meaning or special significance with origins in the past.” For me, traditions are an activity, or an event that happens year after year, with the ones you love.


Growing up, my mom and dad ensured our lives were enriched with lovely memories. Almost every year, when the holidays would roll around, I knew what to expect, Thanksgiving at my maternal grandmother’s (and eventually my Aunt’s) house, Christmas Eve was a huge Polish celebration of Wiglia meal (the “W” makes a “V” sound) celebrated at my paternal grandparent’s house, and then Christmas morning was at my own home.


Every year, we could count on these holidays being the same. I’d look forward to, and countdown the days, minutes and seconds until Santa would come to Christmas Eve dinner. I can remember sitting on the couch in my parent’s old home, singing songs on Christmas morning, trying to wake my parents up so we could open our gifts. Just sitting here writing this post, these memories are eliciting such a warm, fuzzy feeling deep inside. I want to give the same magnificent gift to Emmett, that my parents have given to me. It is because of this, that my holidays will be a bit different, this year. More on that in another post, let’s talk Thanksgiving.


I’m really fortunate because my mom now celebrates her Thanksgiving at her house on either the Friday or Saturday after the actual day. This allows us to make the trip to my in-laws in Syracuse, since this is their big holiday, without missing any celebrations with my family. Our celebration at my in-law’s is a very typical Thanksgiving meal. We spend time together as a family, catching up and filling each other in on what has been going on in our lives and theirs. It’s amazing the things that can change and occur with just a few miles distance between us. We Facetime pretty frequently, but there is nothing better then actual one on one time together.


This was Emmett’s second Thanksgiving, and he thoroughly seemed to enjoy himself. He got to bop around a new house, and explore all the that were technically “no nos.” He was all over the place, almost like he was showing off, but I feel like he’s too young to understand that yet (maybe not?).  Either way, he was adorable with his grandparents. Once he got used to them, he kept running up to both of them and saying “hi” or just checking-in on them. It was so sweet!


We had a delicious meal, turkey, sweet potatoes, squash, cranberry sauce, dressing and apple sauce. Everything was delicious (my mother-in-law is a fantastic cook)! Emmett enjoyed the homemade cranberry sauce and apple sauce best, but did try some of the squash and turkey too. For dessert, he got a couple spoonfuls of vanilla ice cream, he was particularly fond of the dessert.


Seamus’ cousin was there with his wife and daughter. The baby just had her first birthday on the 24th of November and she is as cute as could be. Emmett and her were kind of iffy of each other and then Emmett made it worse by throwing his water bottle at her. Oy! He’s totally a troublemaker, I literally sat there and watched him stare at her for a second, trying decide if he should throw the bottle or not. I didn’t think he’d actually do it, so I let him go and then BAM, he threw it. Poor girl! She was okay, though, just a few tears.


We had a wonderful time there, but we’re very lucky, that wasn’t our last Thanksgiving holiday of the year. We had my parents and family to celebrate with on Saturday. More great family time and more good food! We got there early so that Emmett could spend some time with some second cousins that hadn’t seen him since Christmas the previous year. He was in great spirits, getting into everything and playing with all of my moms toys, and of course taunting the dogs. My mom has a dog, and so does my sister, they had both closed into the sun porch, but Emmett kept going over to the windowed door and barking at them. It was adorable, but I really felt bad for the pups.


Dinner was delicious! My brother and his girlfriend also joined us, it was good to see them because we don’t see them often enough. We all updated each other on all that was going on in our lives and what we’d missed. Before we knew it, the meal was over and we were cleaning the table for dessert, which was pumpkin pie, apple crisp pie and peanut butter pie (slightly non-traditional). Yummy stuff!


As our second Thanksgiving came to a close, I continually amazed at what a wonderful family Emmett is surrounded by, on both sides. I’m so happy that I can give Emmett these traditions, things that as he grows, he’ll look forward to every year. Some of my best memories are of the times when I was excitedly waiting for one of our holiday celebrations to begin.


Your turn!

What are some of your favorite traditions?

What traditions to you hope to start, or have you started, with your family?


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