Elephants and Turtles and Snakes and Turtles and Turtles.

Just the other day, Babystar and I took an impromptu trip to the zoo. The weather was perfect and the Toddler REFUSED to get dressed to go to whatever class we were planning to attend that morning. (I am 99% sure it was a baby dance class because we have been trying to go to that at Nook but so far have literally never made it.)

She only wanted to read books in her pajamas. When we came to a book with a zoo (Peek-a-Who by Nina Laden), I asked her if she wanted to go to the zoo instead. She ran to put her shoes on right away. (I explained about getting dressed and she went along with my suggestion begrudgingly.)

I have been to the zoo many times but never with just a Toddler. I let Babystar direct our traffic and it was the best day. We spent more time than you would think watching a waterfall, we skipped some of the more popular attractions, and we watched one of the elephants eat an ENTIRE pile of hay. Babystar hissed some Parseltongue at her snake friends whom she ADORES. And we spent a very long time hanging out at the lemur exhibit, though we did not see a single lemur. There were about a million turtles swimming in the water surrounding the lemur mountain and Babystar waved to all of them. Individually.


I learned about a lot of good ‘stop for snack’ spot that I might otherwise have not noticed.


I highly recommend this exercise if you have the time and a spare toddler.

I packed lots of water and snacks so we didn’t spend a penny, but that is because we are FONZ which is a fancy way to say ‘zoo members’ in the DC area. $80 per year gives us a few cool perks but we bought it mostly for the free parking. Which we bought last fall when Babystar started learning about animals. And I forgot to add it back then, so I’ll add it now.

RAISING BABYSTAR: $16,291.37

 

College Applications.

Just kidding. Babystar is a long way from college. The Teenager has spent the winter meeting application deadlines for school in the fall. Not the baby. That would be ridiculous.

RIGHT?

Apparently not.

We just spent $100 on preschool applications for the fall. One application was $75 and I already know that Babystar is waitlisted. One was $25 but we have not heard back yet.

All the local mamas told me to try for at least three preschools, hoping to get into one. I didn’t listen; I only submitted two applications. But dude. She’s not even two (well, she will be two in the fall). I sort of figure that my ‘Option Three’ will be to not send her to preschool in the fall. Two-year-old classes are only two days a week for like three hours. It’s a big step, but also, it’s totally fine if she doesn’t go. Right?

Did I just BREAK THE BABY OH NO?!

(Just kidding. Probably. Hopefully.)

Btw, that video was taken at the library, which is FREE, although we did buy a Little Critter Numbers board book for fifty cents from the library sale.

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RAISING BABYSTAR: $14,838.88

Back to Cloth.

With few exceptions, Babystar has been in disposable diapers for about a month now. I started when I packed the bag for the Women’s March last month and disposables were so much lighter. I kept her in disposables through a bathroom renovation that took away my access to the diaper sprayer for a week. Then we all got sick and now we are better but yet the disposable diapers remain on the baby.

I’m not gonna lie — I don’t hate them. They are not as cute as the cloth diapers, but they definitely have their benefits.

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But today we are back in cloth. Let’s do this!


We bought eleven packs of diapers during this glorious, lazy month. The Target brand was somehow always on sale for $4.99. Score! So $54.89 for almost a month. Eh. The fancy cloth we use costs $30-35 each. I think you CAN save money using cloth but I definitely did NOT.

(We still have disposables left but we also still use them at night and on Sundays in the church nursery.)

RAISING BABYSTAR: $14,738.38

It’s the End of the Year as We Know It.

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The week between Christmas and New Year’s always feels sort of like a half-deflated balloon. All the hype leading up to Santatime has ended, but the year isn’t quite over. School is out, Husband’s work is (sometimes, partially) out, and the whole schedule is off. But. It’s not yet time to jump back on the Resolution Train. (Hurry and eat all the carbs, CHOO CHOO.)

This past week was full of lots of surprise home-alone time. I’ve been organizing closets. I know — I am SUCH a party animal. Babystar has been having park adventures and mall adventures and general errand adventures with her dad. She loves it so much. The little monster is all like BOY BYE MAMACITA as soon as she hears it’s time to put on shoes.

Babystar got her first ever Dippin’ Dots on one such adventure ($4.75.) She rode in a cool rented stroller with a steering wheel ($4.50.) She had a slice of Costco pizza ($2.16). She conned her dad into buying two penguin ornaments that do not spend much time on the tree because Babystar is OBSESSED with penguins ($5.98). She came home one day with two half price Christmas balloons ($11.75).


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Speaking of penguins, we got tired of watching the March of the Penguins trailer over and over and over and over and bought the digital version of Happy Feet on Amazon ($7.99). OMG she does the Happy Feet dances and I DIE. We have watched it thirty-seven bazillion times already. In four days. That’s like 0.000000234 cents per viewing. Not bad. (No, I did not really do the math.)

Oh! He’s also been buying the disposable diapers. A LOT of them, but whatever. We still use one per night but he often takes disposables instead of cloth on their outings. I am 100% fine with this arrangement, but I did forget to include the diapers lately. Target has had them for $4.99 for the last month, and they are $6.49 usually. I’m guessing here, and I don’t like to guess with this project, but I’m going to guess anyway. Four at each price = $45.91. I definitely bought two packs while she was sick in November. Because gross. And we just bought some so we are set now. These *should* last 28 days but they won’t. Many nights she pees between the time we put on the disposable and the time she falls asleep. And many weekends she hangs out in disposables because she is hanging out with dad. (He totally uses cloth too. I think he just finds it easier to change her out of the house when he can toss the dirties. I don’t know what it’s like trying to change her in the men’s room so I’ll just take his word for it.)

Today we went to a kid’s New Year’s Eve Party at Busy Bees ($30) with a countdown and everything, and I’m already home sitting on the couch waiting impatiently for Kathy Griffen and Anderson Cooper to show up on my television. It was really quite fun but of course it was because check out the band.

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Babystar is crashed out on the couch next to me. For now. Not for the year tho, I’m pretty sure.

Cheers, y’all! Now GTFO 2016.

RAISING BABYSTAR: $14,210.23

 

Balloon Fetish.

Babystar looooves balloons. She wants to talk about them, find them in books, point to them, talk about them again, and then talk about them some MORE.

We bought her a balloon just before Halloween and it lasted a few weeks.

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We got another balloon on a random adventure to the National Harbor. It lasted one day. The balloon was free but parking was $10. Because I lost my parking ticket. Also, no matter what Siri or the Internet says, there is no Children’s Museum at National Harbor. Thanks goodness someone was passing out balloons that day.

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We bought another balloon last week ($6.28) because it is a freaking SQUIRREL balloon and even I am excited about that kind of ridiculousness. (Yes, I know I need a life. Shhhh.) Luckily, the squirrel balloon is still hanging in there. She kisses that thing good night. I’m worried about their future, though. She’s so young to have to experience such heartbreak, but I’m afraid it’s unavoidable.

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But OH EM EFFING GEE, none of these compare to how excited she gets when she sees the Apple 7 commercial.

So. My baby is a Balloon Addict. Can anyone tell me how to make youtube play on a loop? I am tired of pushing play every one minute and seven seconds. Y’all have seen the long version right? The director’s cut? Babystar blows kisses to the screen when the song says I love you, I love you, I love you. And so I die. And push the damn play button on my iPad again. Damn you, Apple.

RAISING BABYSTAR: $13,282.74