I constantly tell people I’m blown away by this mom gig. I spent a majority of my pregnancy terrified I would hate being a mom. Turns out I don’t, which is ridiculously good news. Julia turned one last month, and I’m here to tell you, mom-ing keeps getting better and better! She’s so much fun. She’s walking and babbling and loves to play outside and splash in the bath and read books and she’s just so fun!
In the midst of all of the fun, she’s making messes that exceed my expectations on a daily basis. She loves to open cabinet doors for the adventure of seeing what’s inside, unpacking them, and slamming the door shut again. She adores smearing banana as many places as she can, where it instantly dries like the super glue it is. And all the while, she wears an adorable, impish grin that tells me she loves exploring her world. And somehow, it’s all OK.
While I’m not a crazy child proof-er, I do want to keep my kid safe. And so, any cabinet that contains things she shouldn’t get into have locks on them. In our kitchen, we lock the cabinet under the sink, which has our trash, recycling, and cleaning products. In the bathroom, we lock the cabinet under the sink and all of the drawers on the vanity–some of which are locked out of convenience (my makeup and toiletries) and some for safety (pain killers, razors, etc).
I secretly despise the inconvenience of child proof locks, but, like I said, I DO want my kid to be safe, and recognize that I realistically won’t be 2 inches from her for the rest of her days to make sure she doesn’t discover something dangerous. Enter: magnetic cabinet locks. MAGIC. You install the lock on the inside of the cabinet where you can’t see it. When the cabinet is closed, that little latch hooks so the cabinet is locked.
To open the cabinet, you hold a magnet “key” in front of the door, the latch releases, and it opens. MAGIC. The best part? You can turn them off. After the kids go to bed? OFF. Guests in the house for dinner? OFF. When we’ve sufficiently convinced her they’re locked so she doesn’t try to open them? OFF. Until she tries them again, and discovers they open–then they’re back on.
I so prefer these to other cabinet lock systems I’ve seen, and they’ve held up pretty well in the almost 6 months we’ve had them installed.
When we moved into our new house, the first big upgrade we made was to tear out the nasty blue-ish, green-ish carpet, thin and buckling hardwood, and two different patterns of laminate, and replace it all with maple hardwood. Having never had hardwood floors (that I was responsible for cleaning), I had no idea what to do! Some research showed me when you clean hardwood, you’re not supposed to get it really wet, as you would with a steam mop or with a traditional mop and bucket. With much gratitude to the advice of the internet, I found the highly reviewed Bona Hardwood Floor Mop.
Hardwood floor safe? Check. Washable cleaning pad? Check. Cartridge cleaner system? Check. And how does it measure up? Our floors haven’t been this clean since the day we installed them! The cement like banana smears still take a bit of elbow grease, but besides that, the mop has far and away exceeded what I was doing before–a combo of swiffer-ing and hands and knees scrubbing. No thank you!
Banana smearing and cabinet unpacking aside, there are so many moments in this mom life I don’t want to forget. Her sweet ringlets after she has a bath, the way she snuggles into my shoulder and pats my back with her chubby little hand after she wakes up, seeing her sitting in her room, flipping through books and “reading.” And so, I agonized over a baby book. What to do? What to do? How does a person make such a decision? I weighed the options of a complete do it yourself system, something like Project Life, or a traditional baby book. I wanted something that would be sustainable if we have more kids (i.e. I could reproduce this for future offspring so it’s fair for everyone), and I wanted something that went past her first year.
I found the Promptly Journal and fell in love. You guys, it starts with your pregnancy or pre-adoption process and goes through your kiddo’s 18th year. It gives you prompts to answer which is so much fun for me. It’s making me note things I would have never thought to if I were journal-ing on my own. I love it. There are pages for pictures, but only 1 or 2 per month for the first year and then 1 or 2 per year after that, so I’m going to supplement with photo books. After Julia gets older, it will be so much fun to ask her the questions around her birthday and fill in the answers.
If you’re a new Promptly customer, you get 10% off for signing up for their newsletter, so definitely take advantage of that!
What products have you found that are game changers for you?