Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Potty Training

It seems that my second child in 2 years is going to drag me kicking and screaming into potty training. My kids pick the most inopportune times to decide they want to potty train. Caleb decided to use the potty full-time the day we went camping with our Life Group and stayed in tents (the bathroom was about 100 yards away). Levi has chosen three days before we're supposed to be on a 24-hour flight and out of our normal routine for 5 weeks to decide he wants to wear underwear. Not great timing.

People who have kids younger than Caleb sometimes ask me for advice on potty training. I always tell them I don't have any because Caleb potty-trained himself. He watched the other kids at Mother's Day Out and then came home telling me he wanted to go on the potty. We did pull-ups for a while, then moved to only at naptime and bedtime, and a couple of months later I realized he was always completely dry when he woke up.

We've been talking about the potty with Levi for a while, but I didn't want to start until after our trip this summer. He decided yesterday that he wanted to wear underwear and was not happy when I put a diaper on him at bedtime. He wants to be like his big brother so desperately.

So far he's doing ok at it. Two accidents, but not too bad. We'll see how it goes over the next couple of days, but I secretly hope he loses interest because I'm not about to let a not-quite-potty-trained child wear underwear on an airplane. That would make for a memorable flight.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Finding Educational Activities in the Most Unexpected Places

I just found a great resource for moms with small children!

Even though my kids have tons of toys, it seems we're always looking for things to do around the house to keep their attention and stimulate their minds all at the same time. They don't need the latest and greatest toys, and it seems they would rather play with a box and paper towel roll than most of their toys, anyway!

I'm always excited about activities that will stimulate their little brains and be fun at the same time. That's where this great, inexpensive eBook comes in.

Angie wrote this book for toddlers and preschoolers (although the activities are great for older ones as well), and it's a 58-page book of activities to do with your children using things you can find around your house. Even living in Singapore, I already have or can find most of these things. The activities are fun for kids and easy for mom!

Angie, who does part-time therapy for children under 3 with developmental delays or disabilities, said she wrote the book because she "wanted to show [the] families [of her therapy patients] that there are so many activities that can be done with just objects in and around their own houses. [She] wrote this book with them in mind. "

Included in the book are ideas for activities using the following:
  • Balloons
  • Balls
  • Blankets
  • Blocks
  • Books
  • Boxes
  • Bubbles
  • Cardboard Tubes
  • Cookie Cutters
  • Cotton Balls
  • Dishpan (Plastic Wash Tubs)
  • Egg Cartons
  • Fabric
  • Just You! (No Props Needed)
  • Kitchen
  • Laundry
  • Lids
  • Painting
  • Paper Bags
  • Paper Cups
  • Paper Plates
  • Plastic Bottles
  • Plastic Easter Eggs
  • Poker Chips
  • Sponges
  • Miscellaneous Ideas (three pages of ideas that don’t fall into one of the above categories)

I appreciate having a list of activities to add easy fun to our day, like going "blanket sledding" or having "target practice" with plastic yogurt/ice cream/butter tubs. And in moments of desperation when one of the kids is sick and our plans have been foiled (or a torrential downpour comes out of nowhere!), I have a bank of 200+ activities for us to do right here at home. And the fact that it's an eBook, and I didn't have to pay shipping and is GREAT!

You can hop over to Angie's place for more information about and examples of the activities in this great book.

Readers here can save 20% by using the code Reflecting20 until June 15!

I was given a free copy of this book for the purposes of reviewing it, but the opinions are strictly mine.

Now go grab a copy while you can get it for 20% off!!

Friday, May 14, 2010


This is what happened yesterday as I was in the kitchen with the boys fixing oatmeal. I was making some lemonade at the sink with my back to the microwave. I heard it "beep" that it was finished and told Levi not to touch it. He was standing on the chair watching the oatmeal, and I think he started to fall and tried to grab the microwave to save him. The microwave that just sits on the counter. It came unplugged, fell upside down, and spilled out its contents on the floor (plus all the stuff stored on/next to it). There was glass shattered into a million pieces all over the kitchen. Thankfully, Levi was not hurt, but both of our hearts were pounding! It was one of those instances where I heard what was happening and could NOT turn around fast life was moving in slow motion.

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Scripture Memory Verse Nine & A Resource

A few days ago a friend gave me a copy of While They Were Sleeping: 12 Character Traits for Moms to Pray by Anne Arkins and Gary Harrell. Precious friends are the ones who pass on resources like that! It has written out prayers you can pray over your children by just filling in their names, and you can use their prayers as a guide to pray about specific situations that arise in your kids' lives. It's such a wonderful tool and has helped me in praying for my children. The first section is on kindness, and we could use some of that around here these days as the boys have been spending more time together and, therefore, more "brotherly love" has been expressed. :-)

The Scripture I've chosen this time comes from the Introduction to While They Were Sleeping:

"Rise during the night and cry out.
Pour out your hearts like water to the Lord.
Lift up your hands to him in prayer,
pleading for your children" -Lamentations 2:19

I want to pray faithfully for my children as they grow. This is a time of guiding them that I will not get back. I want to pray for them like Paul prayed in Ephesians 1:17-19 "asking God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, to give [them] spiritual wisdom and insight so that [they] might grow in [their] knowledge of God. I pray that [their] hearts will be flooded with light so that [they] can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called—his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance. I also pray that [they] will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him."

Here's the Amazon link to the book if anyone is interested.

Sunday, May 09, 2010

Coffee Date

Justin and I don't have much opportunity for dates these days, so we took the opportunity recently to stop while we were out and enjoy some tea at Coffee Bean & Tea Leaf with the boys. The boys had frozen yogurt, and momma got a Chai Tea Latte (which was so good!). We had just purchased some puzzles at the mall, so we had some nice family time doing puzzles and enjoying each other's company.

Daddy helping Caleb sound out the words on his puzzle. (Race cars are his favorite now. He wants to be a race car driver when he grows up. Lord, help me!)

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Tuesday, May 04, 2010

Totally Random Strangers

...taking pictures of my children. :-) We went to the Merlion while my parents were here, and there were lots of tourists there who were interested in taking pictures of our "white" children. (I know they were tourists because Singaporeans see lots of western kids and aren't interested in taking their picture!) The lady in the second picture spoke a little English, but the lady before her didn't speak any, just grabbed Caleb up and tried to take a picture with him. I could tell she was trying to tell us she'd like to take her picture with him, but Caleb didn't know what was going on. He wasn't happy about it. We always try to be nice because we know we go to other countries and take pictures of cute children we see, too. :-) Getting the kids to smile isn't easy, though, since they don't want to smile half the time we take pictures of them.
Daddy had to get in the picture for the kids to even think about standing next to the lady!

And a very rare picture of Justin and me. (If I look tired, I was! There are a lot of steps you have to descend to access the Merlion. Doing so on crutches wasn't easy. Neither was ascending them!)
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Saturday, May 01, 2010

Verse Eight

It's time for another Scripture to memorize. This time I'm choosing one we've been studying in BSF.

"Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God." -John 6:68-69

Which one have you chosen? Don't give up! Keep meditating on your verses and hiding God's Word in your heart.

Reflecting Him

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