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Written by Mama Monday

Blog posts written by mamas on cloth diapering, green living, natural parenting.


In case you haven’t already “met” our latest limited edition print, Road Trip, here it is in all of its summer vacation-celebrating glory!


I thought it’d be fun to chat about some ways that Road Trip the print is a lot like a real road trip…and a few ways that it’s totally not.

Some ways that Road Trip = a “real” road trip:

It’s super fun. Right off the bat, I can’t really deny that this is a super fun print. Between the map-like blue background and its quirky geometric vibe, it truly makes me itch to hit the road with my own family (even though our speed is more of a 3-hour-or-less road trip rather than a 3-day trip these days). And the fact of the matter is that no matter where you plan to go, you usually have a memorable, fun time.  

It’s just as much about the journey as it is the destination. Sure, your main destination(s) are what the planning takes place around and give you something to look forward to when you just missed the last restroom for 50 miles, but the things your family will remember (and laugh about) for years to come often happen during the traveling portion of the journey.

While I remember the historical sights or beachy destinations of my youth, I also greatly remember laughing about nothing whatsoever with my sister or singing along to our Walkman CD players at the top of our lungs in the backseat. So, I love that this print shows the road just as much as the fun spots along the way.

It reminds us that America is unique but, at the same time, refreshingly similar. All those destination spots – the Statue of Liberty, the Space Needle, Paul Bunyan and Babe, Disney, and more – show us what a special place our young country is. Each state has its own identity, accent(s), sayings…yet in our travels we discover that there are common threads of kindness, decency, and looking out for your fellow man that make the whole country somehow feel like home.   

All that in our country…AND a diaper? Yes, really.

One way that Road Trip is NOT like a “real” road trip?

Road Trip (the diaper) is way easier. Admittedly, between the planning, the packing, the organizing, the budgeting, the meltdowns, the exhaustion…a real road trip can sometimes be just as frustrating and difficult as it is fun and exciting. Luckily, with a fresh new print like this and the ease of cloth diapering (once we get the hang of it), sticking a Road Trip on the bum is way simpler than a real vacation.

And for anyone interested in traveling while using cloth, here are a couple of our old blog posts chatting about that very thing:

Tips for Traveling with Cloth Diapers

More Travel Ideas with Cloth Diapers

MacGyver Mommy: Flying with a Car Seat

Fun Summer Uses for Wet Bags

We’d love to hear where you’re heading (or already went!) this summer! Drop us a line in the comments.   

I have distinct memories of celebrating Independence Day as a kid.

Sometimes it involved going to a parade. (My family was all about marching bands; all 4 kids were Mohawk Marching Mohicans and our grandparents were Marines…marching was kind of in our blood.) Sometimes it involved using sparklers. Sometimes it involved a barbecue. Sometimes it involved trekking out to watch fireworks.

But, what I remember the most was always, ALWAYS watching the Boston Pops concert on TV followed by “Yankee Doodle Dandy” (which my sister and I would inevitably fall asleep on the floor – on a sheet – and have a sleepover to).

Weird the things we remember, huh?

Well, I’m trying to figure out activities that we can try out much like my mom did that turn into traditions that work for our family. Low-key fun that means we can all enjoy the “Happy Birthday, America!” celebration without too much planning or work on Mom and Dad’s end.

Here’s a handful of last-minute ways to up the fun factor for your Fourth:

Primary Printables’ 4th of July Scavenger Hunt – This is a fun family activity for everyone that’s simple (and free!) to do at a get-together. If you’re not going on an outing, you can edit and adjust it to meet your needs.

A Little Pinch of Perfect’s Cupcake Liner Fireworks – I love this idea if your little one’s too young to enjoy waiting up for fireworks (I’m envisioning at least one meltdown and a bunch of over-tired behavior issues with our kiddos!). Have them make their own neat fireworks. Oh, and if your child’s too young for scissors, you can cut a bunch and let your child choose and glue them on the page.

Crafty Morning’s Fireworks Straw Craft – This is another way to let your kids safely make their own fireworks at home! I’ve also seen this done with squishy spiked balls and toilet roll tubes cut with slits. Use whatchya got!

Domino’s Easy Recipes – Am I the only one who can always be found hunting down just one more recipe last-minute to complete a meal (especially when entertaining)? This offers over 30 amazing (and mostly kid-friendly!) recipes that you can throw together quickly. I’m eyeing some of the fruit ideas, but there are seriously some mouth-watering recipes here to round out your menu!

Little Bins for Little Hands’ July 4th Slime Science Activity – SLIME. It’s SO a thing. As an educator, I can vouch for how uber-popular this is with even the older kids (although I think that it’s a great sensory activity for kids…even if I can’t wrap my head around the obsession quite yet). This stuff is special July 4th-themed, so your kids might just be thrilled about it. Plus, you can play with it outside while the adults are grilling or inside if the day turns rainy.

Or just chill out at the pool and do your own thing. There’s no right or wrong way to enjoy the day!  

Either way, let us know how you’ll be spending the holiday and we hope it’s a happy, healthy one!

Our daughter is now 19 months old. One of the cool things about this age is that the clothes (and, to an extent, our daughter!) are leaning away from baby-ish stuff. Less onesie-style tops mean regular shirts and tees. Add this to the heat of summer and that means showing off our cloth diapers!

I’ve noticed online that there are differences of opinion about whether or not little ones should go places without pants (ie only in a top and diaper, maybe a pair of sandals). Some think that they’re only babies and there’s no harm in it; others don’t feel kids are “fully dressed” this way and it’s simply not appropriate.

Well, there’s no right or wrong answer. As with most things in parenting, it’s totally your choice and there will always be someone to disagree. Ain’t THAT the truth?

In our case, if we’re heading to visit someone’s house (particularly for a get-together like a birthday party or barbecue) or out to run errands, we’ll dress her up a tad more with a pair of shorts, skort, or COMFORTABLE dress. (We are not into frou-frou whatsoever. Harper seems to be leaning towards the tomboy, fearless realm, so frills just trip her up more.) But, if we’re hanging out at home or know that the kids will just be running around someone’s backyard and it’s HOT, I’m fine with showing off a fluff bum!

I actually have some tops that work awesomely with our Thirsties diapers. Today we’ve got a “model-less fashion show” (it was naptime…plus, logistical nightmare ;-)) of some of my faves!

Fun & Feminine – White Cherokee top with eyelets (Target) & Alice Brights

Cool Cat
– Cat & Jack kitty shirt (Target) & Iris

Floral & Festive
– Carter’s hand-me-down dress & Poppy

Creatures Galore
– Mixing it up with a Cat & Jack snail top (Target) & Meadow Land

Cool Treat
– Cat & Jack ice cream top (Target) & Moss
(there’s a minty blue scoop if you look closely!)

A Day at the Beach
– Jumping Beans fishy shirt (Kohl’s), Koala Kids tropical top (Babies R Us) & Moss

Get into Nature
– Jumping Beans butterfly top (hand-me-down) & Billy Buttons

So, there you have just a few combos I’ve been trying out lately. I also like mixing up solids with ANY top, whether it “matches” or not. Because, after all, what other time in life can you get away with still being super cute while not matching one single bit?

Are you in the “pro-pants” or “free legs” camp? Feel free to let us know in the comments! Remember that this is a judgment free zone, so opinions of all sorts are welcome!!

I haven’t seen a movie in an actual movie theater in awhile. When I say “awhile” I actually mean a super long time. Like, before our son was born…and he’s going into kindergarten in the fall. Pretty sure it was Toy Story 3 (and, man, did I bawl!).

But this doesn’t mean that our family doesn’t watch movies. Our older son (and, now, our daughter, who insists on doing EVER-Y-THING he does and more) sees old Disney movies at his grandparents’ houses and we have a handful of family-friendly fare we keep on hand.

By far our kids’ new favorites (and, in turn, our new favorite) are usually high quality (no scary stuff), just the right length, super inexpensive, and fit into our schedule wonderfully. We just pop some popcorn, pull up some blankets and pillows, and dive into PBS Kids Family Night every Friday on the PBS Kids channel. (You don’t even need fancy schmancy cable for it – just the super basic version, which is what we have. ;-))

You may think anything PBS is kinda lame, and if you’re not into their kids’ shows yet, it might not be for you. But our kiddos each have their favorites – our daughter Harper LOVES Daniel Tiger (and don’t tell him we know, but our son Hadley still does, too!), he prefers Wild Kratts, they both love Arthur and Sesame Street, and we all love Odd Squad (especially my husband, to be honest).

So, each Friday at 7pm we know that they’ll be offering an hour-long movie (which is the PERFECT length for their attention spans and bedtime) that’s essentially a super long version of an episode of one of our favorites. Now, if we happen not to be excited about the offering for that week, we’ll either do a family activity together outside the house that evening or watch an old movie that our kids enjoy. Either way, we’re putting in some solid, relatively relaxed family time.

My favorite moment so far came the Monday after we’d had our first “Family Movie Night.” Hadley was getting ready to go to pre-K that morning and said excitedly, “I can’t wait to ask Connor* what he did for Family Night!!!” as if it was a holiday and EVERYONE celebrated it. It was definitely a teachable moment but also showed how important our Friday night ritual became to him pretty quickly. It really has been a way to relax and come together as a family at the end of a hard week.

It’s so cool to see the love of PBS programming that my husband and I appreciated as children (and now as adults when we enjoy programs like Sherlock and Downton Abbey – may it rest in peace – or American Experience and Antiques Roadshow) being loved and embraced by our own kiddos now.  

Is there something that you do as a family – whether it’s a game night, a “no devices allowed” policy, or a super simple movie night – that helps you all unwind and appreciate each other on a regular basis? We’d LOVE to hear your ideas in the comments!

*Not his real name.  

We’ve been talking a lot about summer fun (can you blame us?!) lately. Today I thought I’d share my favorite uses for our Thirsties wet bags during summertime. Of course they’re ideal for and sold as dirty diaper containment on-the-go – which they’re AMAZING at. You’d be surprised at how little stinkiness sneaks out!

I’m so proud that my husband is the one who came up with the idea for this blog post. I know we use our wet bags for a bunch of uses, but he’s the one who reminded me how much easier it is to use them when we travel or make a trip to the beach. So, a shout-out to him for reminding me of all the cool ways we’ve used our Thirsties bags!

* In these examples, the wet bags have been cleaned to high heaven (and I often give the insides an additional wipe with a natural cleaning solution). They come clean really well and I’m honestly not concerned that there’s any huge germ/grossness factor since we roll up our cloth diapers pretty tightly and dump out as much poop as possible into the toilet, anyway. Just a little PSA. 😉

Swimsuit storage – The #1 alternative use for wet bags is to still use them for a “wet” purpose – namely, to contain swimsuits after some fun in a lake, pool, or water park. I’ll often pack the swimsuits dry into the wet bag (sometimes even splitting them up – one with my husband’s trunks and towel, one with my suit and towel, etc so that we just hand out the bag to each person to make changing easy) then we’ll toss the wet stuff back in when we’re done.

I pop this stuff right in the wash when we get home to avoid any mildewing or anything. Easy peasy!

Side note: Did you guys KNOW that Thirsties is releasing their own adorable swim diapers this week?!?! Check out their Facebook page for more details!!!

Compartmentalizing packing – Kind of like how I separate everyone’s swim stuff into a bag, I’ll use the wet bags to organize our luggage and car packing a bit. I’m not a crazy organizer, but I’ve found that putting things together – often times in a sturdy, space-saving wet bag – helps me put a hand on what we need way quicker and not have loose items rolling around the car.

So, this could be a bag for beach toys, a bag for fruit and other snacks. Any of those sticky, spillable things – the lotions, sunscreens, baby wash, toothpaste – often get their own bag. However it works for your needs, go for it.  

Activity bags – Like I just mentioned, having bags for certain tasks or items is super helpful. Well, putting kids’ favorite activities into their own bag (maybe assign each kid a different print or color) is another strategy we use to keep things not only contained but less stressful on trips.

An example would include favorite action figures for our older son, a mess-free marker coloring book (you know about those, right?? Lifesavers) and some extra paper for the imagination, a favorite book, and I usually grab a cheap “extra” toy or travel activity that’s brand new to them that adds an element of surprise (and gives us some extra quiet time from the backseat).

Dirty clothes – When I’m packing, I always make sure that we’ll have an extra wet bag (whether we pack it individually or we empty one along the way) that can contain dirty clothes. Now, I don’t normally do ALL the dirty clothes this way, but super stinky or gross items get their own bag – and by the end of the trip, any extra clean clothes tend to end up in their own CLEAN wet bag to avoid getting mixed in with the used stuff.

A quick picnic bag – Picnic baskets are such a sweet idea, but they’re not always a practical choice. If it’s a last-minute lunch at a park, we’ll often grab some items from the fridge (especially if we’ve got a kitchenette while traveling) that we can all split and just go. While it doesn’t work exactly like a cooler, it contains any moisture (like from a water bottle) and makes for a super portable meal.

I’ve also tossed frozen water bottles in a bag along with a couple of cool ones and they’ve stayed nice and cold all day (and recycled the plastic later – I prefer zero waste when possible, but sometimes we have to improvise when traveling).

There are seriously SO many ways you can use these things. An added bonus is that sometimes another parent will admire the print of my wet bag and it starts up a nice conversation about cloth diapers. 😉

We’d LOVE to hear your favorite uses for wet bags in the comments!