Category Archives: Kids and Babies

What is the ideal age for starting potty training?

There is no ideal age for starting potty training. Some kids learn it from the very first day since their mothers have the patience and drive to skip the diapers and train right away. Others become aware of their bodily functions at a certain stage and that is when it is time to start potty training!

How do you know if they know?

A good way to check this is to see if the child will pee during a shower. When this happens, you can talk about it and next time ask if they want to pee. If they start doing this during showers and baths you know that they know how to control this muscle.

If you are ready to take the mess ups, off with the diapers during day time! When the child feels the sensation of being wet it is easier to train. But there will be plenty of “Mommy, pee pee on the floor!”.

If you wait till the child is a bit older, closer to 3, the potty training can be faster. But this is not a rule. There are plenty of kids around 1 years old that can do this. You need to tune in to your child’s development and be sensitive to it.

You can always try!

Remember, it won’t hurt your child to pee on themselves because you decided to give it a try. If you handle the mess ups in a pleasant way, they will not get traumatized by it. If you want to check if your child is ready for potty training just try. It might be time; it might not be.

And if it isn’t you can be sure that soon that child will want to potty train, that is the natural way of every human being!

How young is too young to go alone to Japan?

What would you say if your daughter had this great idea of going to Japan all by herself? She thought that adventures in Tokyo would make a lot of sense before life gets too serious. Personally, I think that this sounds like great fun. If it was me. If it is my daughter… well, that is another story.

Children traveling far away

I think that children that are 13 and older can travel abroad if they are accompanied by adults. It doesn’t have to be a parent. I myself took off on a choir tour far away from home when I was 13. It was an amazing adventure.

But Japan is so far away and not only that. It is so exotic. I have a feeling one could easily fall in love with that country. Another scary thought for a mom. If the child goes to Japan and then decides to stay there, what can be done?

The benefits of traveling to other countries

There are certain benefits of traveling abroad at a young age. The young person can learn a new language fast. If she stays for a few weeks it might be enough for a foundation of a language that she can continue to study at home.

Young people also form friendships easily. How lovely to have friends from other countries to stay in touch with as she grows up.

So how young is too young?

So getting back to my question. How young is too young to travel alone to Japan? I think that young children going with their parents is just fine. Likewise younger children and young adults going on some sort of tour.

But if we are talking about an older teenager going to Tokyo to stay many months in an apartment with others of the same age, it is too young to be under 20. But I would also think twice, and three times, to let her go so far away.

I think the solution would be to go together if that would be possible. Chicken mom me, but that’s how I feel!

Expertmom reviews the Graco baby swing

I borrowed the baby swing from Graco from a friend when my third baby was about 1.5 months old and I do wish I would have gotten a baby swing for his older siblings. The question of whether a baby swing helps to soothe a baby has a definite answer, yes it helps! I am not going to say that my baby sits content in this swing day around because he doesn’t, but it gives me time enough to do dishes, brush other kids’ teeth, pack a laundry and write an article, and that is a huge help.

Now, let’s look at the actual baby swing to review its pros and cons…

Putting it together

The Graco baby swing comes in 3 different parts that are easy to assemble. You don’t need a manual for this because the parts show you where they should go and how. This is a plus both for the actual process of assembly and for moving the swing around. Remember, I borrowed mine and we managed to pack it into a small car without any problems.
The swing is powered by 3 size D E95 batteries (the big ones) and it can be used for weeks without needing new ones (of course depending on how much you use the swing) The batteries are also easy to insert and you don’t need a screwdriver for this. A kitchen knife will pop the lid open but siblings won’t be able to do this, perfect!

Putting the baby in the swing

The swing has belts but I never figured how to get the upper part to fit over my baby, the lower belt is enough to keep him in so this doesn’t bother me. There is also a tray, with 2 toys, and this tray folds over the baby. I am not completely satisfied with the tray function because it can easily snap over the hands and fingers of the baby if you are not careful when putting it in place. You must raise the baby’s arms when sliding the tray in place.

Effects and music

The baby swing from Graco comes with a few classical tunes that can be played while swinging the baby. These are pleasant and I find that the rest of the family enjoys hearing them. You can also play white noise like birds chirping but I personally find these sounds annoying so I don’t use them. There is also vibration in the chair but I don’t use this either as it doesn’t seem to make much of a difference to the baby.


The speed can be adjusted in 6 steps. I find that level 1 and 2 are fast enough and levels 4-6 makes my head spin. Since my baby is starting to be too heavy for the swing (to 9 kg) I find that I often have to give the swing a push to make it run smooth. This could also be due to need of new batteries and it is not something that bothers me. You can swing manually if you want to.


To clean the swing you can take the fabrics off the chair and run them in the laundry machine. The materials are easy to keep clean and the rest of the swing is made of plastic parts that are easy to wipe off. The only detail that could be tricky to clean is the belt but the one in my swing is in perfect condition, this most likely because you don’t really feed a baby this age in the swing so it stays clean. Just make sure to instruct older siblings not to play with food, colors or other staining materials around the swing.


This Graco baby swing review will simply have to give the swing thumbs up. It is a big help and even if you will only use it for a few months it can do a lot to keep you sane and happy during a period when things can be very hectic. I would say borrow one if you can and buy one when you know that you will hopefully use it more than once.

Since the swing stays in such nice condition it should be perfectly fine to buy one that has been used without much difference from a new one.
I will put this post under gift for Mom because this is a great gift for a new Mom since it can really help out during the day and night!

Pick a Hotel in Orlando for Young Children

Planning a vacation with young children calls upon all your resources as a mom to make sure it will be enjoyable for the younger generation and the grown-ups alike. Your choice of destination is important. A short flight of less than 3 hours from the New York area, Orlando, Florida is one of the most child friendly vacation spots in the US. It tends to be sunny, and is much warmer than the American Northeast. Most tourist attractions, dining facilities and accommodation are geared toward the comfort of vacationing families. When you plan a visit to Florida, picking the right hotel in Orlando, your home away from home, is essential.

A peaceful night’s sleep

At its most basic, a hotel should provide a place for a peaceful night’s sleep, and that is what you will be looking for in your Orlando accommodation. When staying with young children, your needs will most likely be different from those of a single traveler. Probably you will not be interested in close proximity to the night club or the casino, but rather in the quietest location possible. You will need a room with space enough to fit in a crib or two. Safety rails for the children’s beds are an added convenience. You should ask about these requirements before making a reservation.

A good start to the day

Another essential with young children is giving them healthy food that they will enjoy, shortly after they begin to feel hunger. A hungry child is not going to have a good time, no matter how luxurious the accommodation or how entertaining the attraction. Look for an Orlando hotel that provides for the needs of young families by furnishing refrigerators and kettles or other food warming facilities. A child friendly in-hotel coffee shop that opens early in the morning is also very handy, if your youngsters are past the stage of bottles and baby food from jars. Once breakfast is taken care of, a hotel concierge who can help in booking tickets to sites you wish to visit will make your life easier. Even more important, if you do not have a car, is frequent shuttle service between the hotel and the major tourist attractions.

Finding a hotel

So how do you find a hotel that has these conveniences? The Internet is a busy mother’s friend. Look for accommodation near the sights you’d like to see and read reviews by other parents of young children who have stayed in the hotels to see what they recommend. Make sure that their priorities were similar to yours. When you find a hotel that looks promising, don’t be shy to email them and ask whether they can accommodate your requests. Arranging everything in advance for the comfort of your children is a great way to help make your vacation a wonderful family experience.