My 4 yr. old son got a Vtech InnoTab for Christmas. He loves video games and gadgets, so we thought that he would LOVE the InnoTab. The graphics are amazing when you use the cartridge. The built in stand is great as well. My son has already lost the pen that it came with, so I wish Vtech would start selling extra pens for it, like how there are extra pens for the Nintendo DS. The InnoTab does have some great features but the worst part about it is that it takes 4 AA batteries and it dies each day that he plays with it. So, we went out and bought 2 sets of rechargeable batteries. I wish it came with a charger like the Nintendo DS or iPad.
I bought the Hoover Floormate last week from Target. They had it on sale for $119. A friend of mine has been telling me that it's the best thing for the kitchen floor and I have been looking for something good for my kitchen floor, with 2 young children you can imagine what my kitchen floor looks like at the end of each day. Well, I tried it out yesterday and I like it but I'm not in love with it. I like the fact that the dirty water gets picked up into the machine right away, leaving my floor clean. I like that the floor dries so quickly, and I really need that with the boys running around. I like the fact that there are bristles in there to get the tiles somewhat clean. The only thing I didn't like is that it doesn't get all of the dirt and grime off the tiles. I really wanted a machine that would get all the grime off. With kids that drop so much food on the floor, it's a necessity.
Our Pediatric Dentist suggested that I continue giving my 13 month old nursery water as his drinking water. I continue to buy these 2.5 galloon of Nursery water because it is easier to refill his cups with this, but no matter which store I buy it from they are almost always leaking! It is sooo annoying, because I have to keep a towel under the nursery water at all times. I don't understand why the 1 galloon Nursery Water doesn't leak but the 2.5 galloon one is always leaking.
STEP 2 - PARTY TIME KITCHEN
MOTOROLA MBP36 VIDEO MONITOR
When we had our first son, we bought the Summer Infant Day & Night Video Monitor for him. It worked out well for us up until recently. He is 4 years old and now we ended up keeping it plugged in all day and all night long. It wouldn't work if it wasn't plugged in. There was also alot of static throughout the night. The static was waking us up in the night, so we just got fed up one night and decided to invest in a new monitor.
We did some research online and bought the Motorola MBP36 Video Monitor. Wow! This monitor is great! We can talk to him through the monitor and we can scan the room and zoom in and out. The clarity is amazing! There is only 1 downfall; the monitor doesn't last all night long by itself. In the middle of the night, the monitor will start beeping to let me know that it is about to shut off unless you plug it in. So, if you're in deep sleep you might not hear that beep and it might shut off and you might be able to hear your child. But if you're a parent, you naturally wake up throughout the night to make sure that your child is ok. So far I LOVE the monitor!
FISHER PRICE LAUGH & LEARN BABY GRAND PIANO
LEAPFROG LEARN & GROOVE MUSICAL TABLE
This was given to my first son as a gift and he loved it and now my second son loves it as well. One of the reasons that I really like this toy is because you can start using it when your child starts sitting up....all you have to do is use the toy without the legs...just set it down on the floor. When children first start sitting up there are very few toys out there that they can play as much with as this toy. Once your child starts standing up, you can attach the legs and your child will start loving the fact that he or she can stand up and play with toys. This toy is a definite MUST HAVE!
PRESCHOOL PREP DVD'S AND YOUR BABY CAN READ
I am a big fan of the Preschool Prep DVD's and Your Baby Can Read Program mostly because I feel like it really worked for my son. It took my son a while to learn to talk. Well, not really a while but a little longer than most girls start talking. When my son was about 1 and half years old, I started putting on the Your Baby Can Read DVD's for him when he would eat and I would change it up weekly. Then I had heard about the Preschool Prep DVD's and I bought those and started putting those on for him in the car when we would go somewhere and I would change those up every week as well. I wasn't sure at the time if he was really picking up on anything but the moment he started talking we figured out that he knew all of his letters, colors, shapes, numbers and words because of the DVD's. Once he started talking, we started implementing the books and cards that come with the Your Baby Can Read Program. At the age of 2 we also got the Sight Words DVD's from Preschool Prep. By the age of 3 he was reading Level 1 books! Now I've purchased the Phonics DVD's at a great price of $20. They have the Preschool Prep DVD's on sale right now. Click on this link to get the great deal! http://www.savvysource.com/offers/theme/next-level-of-learning-20
BON HOME HEAT & DRY DISH RACK
This Dish Rack is Amazing for people who wish the dishes would dry faster so you can put them away and have room for more dishes to put in the rack. After you are done putting all of the dishes in the rack, all you have to do is push a button and the drying starts. The dishes dry so quickly and the rack stays so nice and clean. This is a definite MUST HAVE!
I first read about this word builder on a blog that I can not find anymore. They had good things to say about it for their child that was learning how to spell. My son is learning how to spell right now, so I thought that I would buy it and write a review for you.
The things that I like about this Word Builder is that you can have your child work with the word builder on his/her own, because they have a Word Builder and Word Hunt mode where the lady asks you to spell some words and the child has to find the correct letters and spell it out, once your child has put in the correct letters the word builder will sound out the word...which helps the child learn the sounds of letters and how it integrates with spelling the words. That feature is something I LOVE because my son knows his letter and his sounds but he is having a hard time putting the sounds together in order to form a word. Then I also think of other 3 letter words for my son to spell on his own. I also show him different three letter words and how they are spelled and then I will ask him to spell them on his own.
I will look up some spelling word lists for you to work with your child! This is a definite MUST HAVE!
REWARDING YOUR CHILD/THE BOARD DUDES DRY ERASE CHORE CHART
There are so many times that my 4 year old is just such an amazing, loving and caring son and then there are times that he decides not to be a good boy that day or not to listen to his parents or his teacher. He knows who he can get away with doing whatever he wants to do with and who he can not get away with. Children are very smart and they will use it to their advantage. He knows that if his grandparents are around then he can do whatever he wants and that he can cry to get what he wants. He knows that he can do that in public as well because we don't want him to cry in public.
A few weeks ago, I decided that there is no way that he's going to do this all of the time forever. He is old enough to know how to act and what is expected of him at ALL times. A few months back, I saw this erasable chore chart at Target and decided to get it because I can use it one day, because it always happens that when you're ready to start using something and when you try to go buy it...for some reason they stopped selling it or making it.
So, I decided that I can use this chore chart in a different way for my son. I wrote down different things that are expected of him. Some examples are: Eating all of his food; listening to Mom, Dad, & Teacher; Being a Good Boy; Brushing his teeth; Helping Someone; Reading a Book to Mom or Dad....etc. He gets a star for each item that is listed and for each day. At the end of each week he gets rewarded and there are 3 levels of rewards....for my son this week, if he gets 20 stars then I will take him to the Museum, and if he gets 30 stars then I will take him to the library and if he gets 40 stars then I will take him to Toys R Us.
I LOVE the difference that it's made in my son's mentality. He wants to earn his stars everyday and goes to look throughout the day all of the things that he still needs to do in order to earn all of his stars. He knows now that he needs to listen to us everyday and he needs to be a good boy everyday and that he needs to help everyone everyday. He likes to help clean up all of the time now and he likes to help his little brother alot now!
The board is called The Board Dudes Dry Erase Chore Chart. It comes with a Dry Erase marker and magnetic stars and happy faces to use.
SHUTTERFLY PHOTO BOOKS
I really LOVE the Shutterfly Photo Books in particular....they have alot of cute designs to choose from and it's pretty easy to create the book and the book comes out amazing. I LOVE the clarity of the pictures in the book and the book comes out to be very nice and clean. I make Photo Books for my children for each year and also for big events and big trips. It's easy to look at the pictures in a book, instead of everyone getting around the computer to look at the pictures. Since they are books, it makes it easy to take them out to look at. My older son wants to look at his baby books every now and again and it's nice to look at the books with him.
J J COLE DIAPER CADDY
I originally purchased this diaper caddy when my older son outgrew the Diaper Changing area, because he would roll over a lot and I was always afraid of him falling off of the table. This caddy is perfect! It has room for plenty of diapers, wipes, and creams, etc. Now with my second son, I use it as our downstairs diaper caddy because we have his diaper changing table upstairs. This is a MUST HAVE!
POTTERY BARN KIDS ANYWHERE CHAIR
We received our older son's Pottery Barn Kids Anywhere Chair as a gift. I LOVE this chair because when children first learn how to sit, they can easily sit on the chair by themselves and get off by themselves as well. Children love to have some sort of independence instead of always relying on us as parents to help with do whatever it is they want to do. The chair is super comfortable as well. You can easily clean the cover in a washer and I have always air dried it so it still looks like new. This can be a great gift and a definite MUST HAVE!
SIMPLY TO IMPRESS INVITATIONS, BIRTH ANNOUNCEMENTS, HOLIDAY CARDS, THANK YOU CARDS, ETC.
Late last year there was a Living Social deal for a website called simplytoimpress.com and they made Holiday Cards. I bought the deal and did our Holiday cards with them. I LOVE their service and quality of cards. Even the packaging that they send your cards in is really nice. I usually almost always buy invitations, birth announcements, and everything else online and I really recommend simplytoimpress.com for everyone. Right now they have a deal going onLiving Social, you pay $15 to spend $40 on their website. Also, if you do not want to purchase the deal, the website is having a 20% off sale right now.