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Mommy-Mode . Home Toddler-mode Natural Parenting Happy Home Printables Miami Local About Contact “What I Wish I Had Known Before I Had Kids” May 25, 2013 By Bianca A Pinterest find! Thank you Charmed Valerie for sharing this clipping from the from the March 2012 issue of Dallas Child. Filed Under: Happy Home, Toddler-mode Tagged With: conscious parenting Conscious Parenting May 25, 2013 By Bianca Hi. My name is Bianca… and I yell. A lot. You see, I have a two-year old. A sweet, loving and adorable two-year old. But boy, oh boy can he push my buttons. Like today, for example, when he screamed at the very top of his lungs while we were out having a nice dinner at a restaurant full of patrons. Or when he refused to go to sleep this evening, a battle that lasted two hours. Or the hundred thousand times he didn’t listen to me the first, second or third time I told him to do something (or not do something). Raising a two-year old can be exhausting! It can feel overwhelming. And most days, I have no clue what I’m doing. What I do know is that I want him to feel safe with me and to know that he can confide in me, I want to model compassion and I want, above all, for him to know that I love him very, very much and that my love is not conditional upon anything. I also know that I feel bad after I yell at him or smack his behind or when I leave him alone in his room while he cries for me. I know I don’t want to do those things, especially because I know they come from me losing my patience and not me doing what I think is best for helping him to overcome whatever challenge he’s facing at that moment. This inner conflict is what has brought me to books, articles and blog posts about conscious parenting. I’m learning a little more each day and finally even beginning to be able to put what I’m learning into practice. It hasn’t been easy, but I know that every step I take towards parenting intentionally, instead of just reacting, is a step in the right direction. “Raise your words, not your voice. It is rain that grows flowers, not thunder.” -Rumi Here are some great resources: Aha! Parenting {website & blog} {facebook} Janet Lansbury {website & blog} {facebook} {No Bad Kids: Toddler Discipline Without Shame} The Orange Rhino {website & blog} {facebook} Positive Parenting {website & blog} {facebook} A compilation of books on positive parenting by Creative With Kids The Mindful Parenting eBundle* will be available from May 28th-June 10th and consists of 21 different titles, each by well-esteemed parenting authors. It’s a great deal and covers a wide range of topics, suitable for both new and veteran moms. (*This is my affiliate link.) Filed Under: Happy Home, Toddler-mode New Zoo Play Dates for Zoo Miami Members March 9, 2013 By Bianca I love our zoo. The open-air aviary allows you to walk amongst over 300 rare and exotic birds. The giraffe feeding station puts you eye-to-eye with the cutest animals ever to walk this earth. The playground and splash pads give you a break from the walking while your little ones play. But my very favorite thing about Zoo Miami are the cage-free exhibits. No cold bars there! The animals are kept in their habitats by deep canals that line the boundaries. This unique design allows for unobstructed views, happier animals and a better atmosphere overall. If you haven’t been to Zoo Miami yet, you must visit this beautiful, one-of-a-kind zoo. And if you are local and don’t yet have an annual pass, you’re missing out! Besides unlimited admission, Zoo Miami member benefits include discounts on food and gift shop purchases, Safari Cycle rentals, free or discounted admission at participating zoos nationwide and invitations to special, members only events. The zoo recently started a new “members only” play date series especially for those of us who have children ages two through five. The play dates are designed to get families together so local parents can meet one another and so the kiddos can socialize and make new friends while learning about the animals. A typical play date includes hands-on programs, animal encounters, story-time, meeting the Zoo Squad and yummy snacks provided by Happy Family Brands (and bagels and coffee for the adults). These play dates take place before the zoo opens and each play date group is limited in size so everyone can really get to know one another. We went to one of the play dates in February and are hoping to check out another one tomorrow. I’ll post all about both play dates in the next day or so! The next play date with available space is scheduled for March 17th. Starting in April, play dates will take place once a month. Remember, space is limited and you must RSVP to attend! Want to learn more? “Like” Zoo Miami’s Facebook page for updates. Hope to see you at the zoo! A special thank you to the Happy Family Brands who help make the Zoo Miami play dates possible! Filed Under: Miami, Miami Local Tagged With: events, family-friendly, play date, zoo Adventures in Potty Training January 16, 2013 By Bianca After a few hints from Eli that he was ready to be done with his amazingly cute cloth diapers (that I may or may not be ready to give up just yet…), I decided to start looking into potty-training. Almost immediately, I came across the 3 Day Potty Training technique by Lora Jensen. A bit skeptical, I searched the web for reviews and found that most people had a lot of success with her method… so I bit. I bought the eBook that she offers on her website and read through it that same night. She is very encouraging and has a way of getting you pumped and believing that THIS WILL HAPPEN! The next day, I bought stickers, a few Hot Wheels and three packs of little boy underwear, all decked out in cartoon characters. We began the potty-training on Friday. On Day 1, he had several accidents (maybe 7?), but seemed to take to the potty really well. He wasn’t afraid of it or uncomfortable at all and he really liked his new fancy underpants. And to my surprise, he had no accidents overnight! He woke around midnight and let me know he had to go. Day 2 went a little better than Day 1, but not by much. Truth be told, I was a little disappointed. He would go back and forth to the bathroom signing “potty”, but refusing to sit down and go. I started to show my frustration and he responded by avoiding the bathroom altogether. Fortunately, babies (er… toddlers) are forgiving and the next day we started fresh. Day 3 went much better than Day 2, with just 2 accidents. We still hadn’t ventured out of the house yet, per Lora’s suggestion, but I felt up for the challenge after Day 3. Now, was he totally potty-trained in three days? I don’t really know what that means… Yes, he was aware of when he had to go potty and he let me know so I could take him by the time those three days were up (he caught on to that the very first day), but he still had a couple of accidents on Day 4 and one on Day 5 (today). However, today went really well with a trip to the park and a long trip to the grocery store. No accidents while we were out, he braved a public bathroom and when he signed “potty” while I was driving home from the store, he held it for a good 5 minutes until we got home. Go Eli! Overall, I absolutely recommend Lora’s eBook. I love that she is encouraging and that her method is positive, but mostly I really appreciate the mentoring she offers. Once you purchase the eBook, you can send her any questions that you may have or describe difficulties that you or your child are having, and she gets back to you within 24-hours with solid advice. And for the record, I am not being paid nor have received any incentive to write this post. I genuinely believe her method works and certainly appreciate that my diaper changing (and washing) days are done! Now how to get over the fact that my fluff addiction must come to an end… and that my little guy is, clearly, no longer a baby. *sniffle, sniffle* Filed Under: Toddler-mode Tagged With: potty training; 3 day potty training Homemade Christmas Gift: Vanilla Extract December 1, 2012 By Bianca December 1st… Can you believe Christmas is just around the corner? If you’re looking for a useful and well-presented, yet inexpensive gift for neighbors, teachers, friends and family, look no further! Making vanilla extract at home is super easy and much less expensive than buying it at the grocery store, plus you can play around with the recipe by using different types of vanilla beans or with burbon as a base, instead of vodka, and you can package it up as pretty as you like. Makes: 16 Jars of Homemade Vanilla Extract Cost: $6.50 each (Note: Your cost can vary greatly, depending on the quality of the vodka and vanilla beans, the jars you choose, the deals you find… but this is an approximate cost based on the vendors I bought from and the type of vodka I went with.) Supplies (adjust count as needed): Approx. 50 vanilla beans 3- 750ml bottles of vodka (or burbon) 16- 6 0z jars with lids (or corks) funnel measuring cup sharp paring knife cutting board decorative twine packing tape (to secure cork if shipping) Instructions: Wash jars and let air-dry. Cut 48 vanilla beans in half cross-wise. Then, leaving one end connected, cut length-wise down each piece. Put 6 segments (equal to 3 whole beans) in each jar. Using a funnel, fill each jar with approximately 4-ounces of vodka. This is not a science, so don’t worry if you have more or less vodka in the jar. Cork the jars, decorate with twine and a festive tag… and voila! Pretty, practical and inexpensive! Note: The vanilla is ready to be used once it turns a nice golden-brown color, which takes about 2-3 months. Since I didn’t think to make these three months in advance, I just put instructions on the tag letting the recipient know that the vanilla will be ready to enjoy around Valentine’s Day. Also, as you use up the extract, just pour a little more vodka in to replenish it. You can throw a bean or two in there as you go; I’ve been using my vanilla extract for over a year and have only had to add one bean so far. I just depends on how quickly you use extract. Having everything all within arms reach will make the process go by much more quickly! I love these jars from Save-on-Crafts.com! The style is called Figi Clear Glass Corked Bottles and they hold 6 ounces. I bought these on Amazon and was very happy with the quality! They were fresh, moist and smelled divine! Is the quality of vodka important when making vanilla extract? I’ve heard yes and no, so I went with what was on sale! I probably wouldn’t go with the cheapest liquor, but definitely not the most expensive either. When cutting the vanilla beans lengthwise, leave one end connected. Using a measuring cup and a funnel will make this step quick and easy! Vanilla extract perfection. Remember to save one for yourself! Filed Under: Food, Homemade Gifts Tagged With: Christmas, DIY, gift ideas, homemade, inexpensive, tutorial, vanilla extract Family-Friendly Fall Events in Miami October 11, 2012 By Bianca Fall is underway and Halloween is fast approaching. Coming from the midwest, I am never quite ready for fall here in Miami. The temperature doesn’t dip below 80o, the palm trees don’t lose their bright green fronds and the air doesn’t turn crisp for at least another month. There aren’t many signs of fall in Miami, but that doesn’t mean this time of year goes by unnoticed here… quite the contrary! Get in the spirit of the season by going on a spooky bike ride, visiting a pumpkin patch or dressing the kiddos up for a costume party! Family-Friendly Fall and Halloween Events in Miami (2012) 10/5-14 – 18th Annual Oktoberfest in Coral Gables is a 10-day cultural event featuring food, beer, music and performances celebrating this Munich tradition. Free {details} 10/5-31 – The Miami Lakes United Methodist Church is hosting their 15th Annual Pumpkin Patch this year. Visit the pumpkin patch, catch an outdoor movie, peruse the craft show or check out the Fall Festival event. Check the link for dates of the specific events. Free (donations welcome) {details} 10/6-31 – Visit The Little Farm for a photo-op in the pumpkin patch! They also have a petting zoo, pony rides and pumpkins for sale. The pumpkin patch is small, but perfect for getting a few festive shots of your little one in his or her cutest fall outfit! Free {details} 10/13 – Fall Carnival on 98th Street, part of the 80th birthday celebrations of Miami Shores, will feature music, art, street performances and fun activities for the whole family. Free {details} 10/19 – A Spooktacular Movie Night you won’t want to miss! Grab some free popcorn and refreshments at this Devon Aire Park event featuring a family-oriented Halloween film. Bring a blanket to sit on! Free {details} 10/19-20, 26-27 – The Gold Coast Railroad Museum is hosting a spooky Halloween party with a haunted train, costume contest, trick-or-treating and… a BOUNCE HOUSE!! $6/members, $8/non-members {details} 10/21 – Bike Walk Coral Gables is welcoming fall with their Autumn Trails Bike Tour of Pinewood Cemetery. This fun and educational bike tour takes you through the oldest cemetery south of the Miami River, a protected historic site where many of our county’s pioneer settlers came to rest. $5/museum members, $10/non-members {details} 10/24, 28-31 – The Miami Children’s Museum is hosting a variety of events in honor of the season! Learn about how other cultures celebrate Halloween at their United Nations Day event on the 24th. Stop by the museum on Monster Monday, Tarantula Tuesday or Wicked Wednesday… but the big party is Michimu’s Halloween Bash on Sunday! They’re also having a benefit Halloween party on the 21st that looks like a lot of fun. {details} 10/26, 27 – Spooky Zoo Nights at the Miami Metro Zoo: Visit the zoo after hours for this family-friendly event which features their very own haunted house, street performances and spooky stories told around a fire pit! $9.95/members, $10.95/non-members {details} 10/27 – Kidgits Spooktacular at The Falls! Dress up the kids and take them to the center court of the mall for Halloween themed arts & crafts, a Dracula stilt-walker, live entertainment and more. Free {details} 10/27, 28 – Zoo Boo at the Miami Metro Zoo: Costume contests, trick-or-treating, Halloween crafts and special performances make this an event you and the kiddos won’t want to miss! General zoo admission for non-members, free for members {details} 10/31 – Spook-tacular Celebrations at CocoWalk! This free public event will be lots of fun for the little ones, including trick-or-treating, a magician, tattoo and balloon artists and, of course, costume contests! Free {details} 10/31 – Coconut Grove Community Fall Thing is a family event hosted by the Boys and Girls Club of Miami and the Mosaic Miami church. This fall celebration is complete with costume contests, candy, food trucks, a rock wall and face-painting. Free {details} 10/31 – Halloween on the Mile is a family affair that offers something for everyone! Trick-or-treating, story time, activities for the kids and costume contests… for the kids and the family canine companions! Free {details} 10/31 – Track or Treat is Halloween event sponsored by the Village of Pinecrest and local businesses. Take your little ones trick-or-treating around the track at Evelyn Green Park. Free {details} 10/31 – Halloween Bash at the Silly Monkey Playhouse: A not-so-scary costume party for the little ones! There are two time slots, one for babies and younger toddlers and one for the older kids. Adults are welcome to come dressed up as well, but no masks and nothing too scary! $25/members, $30/non-members {details} 10/31 – Howl-o-ween at Fairchild, because dogs are part of the family too! If your dog is the festive type, bring him in costume and enter him in the doggie costume contest! Oh, and kids are welcome too! ?? Regular admission for non-members, free for members {details} 11/3 – Sunset Park Elementary ‘s Fall Festival is an event for the whole family with rides, a haunted house and music played by a live DJ. $6/pre-sale, $8/day of event {details} 11/17, 18 – The Harvest Festival at the Miami-Dade Fair & Expo will feature arts & crafts, good food, live music, a model train village and a free petting zoo. Santa and his elves will be present as well! Bring canned goods, which will be donated to a local food bank, to save on admission. $8/adults, $2/kids 4-12 and free for kids under 4 years old {details} 11/22 – Baptist Health South Florida’s Turkey Trot offers festive 5k, 10k and kid’s races at Tropical Park. Bring canned goods for the food drive and help to provide a Thanksgiving meal for a family in need. Cost varies {details} Filed Under: Miami Local Tagged With: costume contests, family-friendly, Halloween, Miami, pumpkin patch, trick-or-treating Fridge Inventory Printable October 5, 2012 By Bianca The latest installment of Mommy-Mode free printables! Want to be reminded when new printables are posted? Subscribe to Mommy-Mode by entering your email address on the right-hand side where it says “subscribe”. Easy peasy and you’ll never miss a free printable! This week’s free printable is another good one for a home management binder or to keep right there on the refrigerator. A fridge inventory list will help you with meal planning and grocery shopping and will help keep food from being wasted. Click the links below to download the free Mommy-Mode Fridge Inventory printable (3 sheets). Mommy-Mode | Fridge Organizer (page 1) Mommy-Mode | Fridge Organizer (page 2) Mommy-Mode | Fridge Organizer (page 3) Filed Under: Printables Pantry Inventory Printable October 3, 2012 By Bianca Your pantry, at a glance! Knowing what you have on hand will make meal planning easier and prevent you from buying duplicates. Click on the links below to download the free Mommy-Mode Pantry Inventory printables (4 sheets). Mommy-Mode | Pantry Organizer (page 1) Mommy-Mode | Pantry Organizer (page 2) Mommy-Mode | Pantry Organizer (page 3) Mommy-Mode | Pantry Organizer (page 4) Filed Under: Happy Home, Printables Tagged With: free printable Operation Gratitude: Sending Halloween Candy to Troops September 29, 2012 By Bianca Halloween is coming up… and you know what that means! You will soon have way too much candy sitting around your house, tempting you every second of every day to EAT IT ALL UP! Beat the temptation and show our troops some love by participating in Operation Gratitude’s Halloween Candy Give-Back program. Operation Gratitude is a non-profit, volunteer-based organization that sends care packages to troops stationed in hostile environments, to those wounded and to children who have lost a parent while serving our country. Operation Gratitude sends out over 100,000 care packages each year, bringing familiar snacks and letters of appreciation to our service members and their families at times when they need comforted most. Interested in helping? There are three ways you can help: 1. Spread the word! I’m sure more people would participate in this program if only they knew about it. 2. Mail in your leftover candy. Better yet… 3. Start your own drive and collect leftover candy from your friends and neighbors to mail to Operation Gratitude. This is a wonderful way to give back and to teach your kids about the troops who serve our country. Maybe they’d even want to send a little card or letter of appreciation along with the candy. Help out with a good cause, provide an excellent learning opportunity for the kiddos and free yourself from the guilt of many late-night candy raids! The address and details of the candy give-back program can be found here, under section 3a. More tips and useful information can be found on the Operation Gratitude blog here. Candy must be sent in prior to December 1st. Click for full-size flyer from the Operation Gratitude website Filed Under: Uncategorized Tagged With: Halloween Today I learned… September 19, 2012 By Bianca So, they say you learn something new everyday. Certainly, this couldn’t be more accurate for a first-time mom of a toddler. Today I learned about turtles. And that they carry salmonella. And that little kids, especially those under 5 years old, should not LICK them. Ok, so my kid didn’t really lick the turtle, but he may as well have. He reached out, ever so gingerly (which is not like him, just ask our cat) and touched the turtle’s head. The turtle retracted his head back into his shell, but not before Eli had his fingers nestled back into his mouth where they reside 85% of the time (the other 15% of the time they are gripped tight around our poor kitty). So I watch this happen; I think it’s cute even, how the turtle pops his head back in. And then I wonder, “Don’t turtles carry salmonella? Or was that lizards? Or am I totally making this up?” MOMMY FAIL! He had already all but licked the turtle and now he’s probably going to have salmonella. Or something. Once we get back home, I look it up and sure enough the CDC warns about children under 5 handling turtles because they most likely carry salmonella. Great. So today I learned that yes, turtles do carry salmonella. Lucky for us, it looks like Eli escaped getting salmonella this time. I guess we’ll know for sure tomorrow. Note to self: Do NOT let your kid lick a turtle. Ew. Filed Under: Toddler-mode Next Page? Welcome! After entering my own form of mommy-mode nearly two years ago, I have been feeling a like I need to force myself to think and speak like an adult again. When I clapped and said, "Yay!" in response to the dental assistant calling me in... I knew I had a problem. When I realized that the only grown-up books I've read in nearly two years have all been related to babies and raising children... I knew I had problem. I needed an outlet, one that might force me to sharpen my saw and reconnect with myself. And so a blog was born... one dedicated to, well, motherhood of course! Whether you're expecting your first baby or you're a seasoned mother of five, I hope you find moral support within these pages and some useful information along the way. Welcome to mommy-mode! About Me Hi, I'm Bianca! Some might call me a modern-day hippy. I am a breast-feeding advocate, cloth-diapering … Read more connect Facebook Pinterest Twitter subscribe FBF ? Powered by ?Google Feedburner posts by topic Cloth Diapers (2) Food (1) Happy Home (5) Homemade Gifts (1) Miami (1) Miami Local (2) Natural Parenting (3) Printables (3) Toddler-mode (5) Uncategorized (2) Posts by Month May 2013 (2) March 2013 (1) January 2013 (1) December 2012 (1) October 2012 (3) September 2012 (7) Search recent comments calendar August 2016 S M T W T F S ? May 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 Return to top of page Copyright ? 2016 Mommy-Mode · Log in

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