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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Learning numbers with Leapfrog Fridge Magnetic Number Set

Everybody knows how frantic and frustrating witching hour can be, I thought a toddler alone was bad, but add a baby to the mix and the toddler goes to a whole other level. I'm constantly bombarded with a million requests to play with her, turn on the tv, answer questions, give her snacks and console her tantrums when I fail to meet all these needs within 45 seconds of her initial request. And then her sister's usually feeding or screaming to be fed at the same time all while I'm trying to organise dinner for everyone. It's exhausting! To be honest during witching hour the iPad usually comes out and the tv's on just so I can have five minutes to try and start dinner uninterrupted {sometimes that works, sometimes it doesn't}. However, the last two weeks witching hour {or any time I've been in the kitchen cooking or cleaning} has been a bit more bearable, thanks to the Fridge Numbers Magnetic Numbers Set from Leapfrog.
The fridge numbers magnetic numbers set uses Leapfrog favourite Scout to teach and reinforce numbers, colours, counting and one to one correspondence {how to match numbers with the correct numeral quantities by sight}. These are all important foundation maths skills children will build upon throughout their school years. The toy includes the base unit which is Scout and his picnic basket {the magnetic reader} and 20 different magnetic tiles {numbers 1-10 and ten different fruits and vegetable groups representing 1-10}.

The aim of the toy is to put different magnetic tiles into Scout's picnic basket. To start out Scout encourages kids to place a tile into the basket. Once the tile is placed into the picnic basket Scout will tell you what it is and ask you questions about the number or item. E.g. for the number 3 he says "3. Count with me 1, 2, 3." and then asks "Can you find 3 sandwiches for my picnic lunch?".

Through fun games and songs Scout helps children recognise numbers, identify groups of objects, count and learn fun facts about fruit and veggies along the way. While placing the magnetic tiles into the basket children are also practicing hand/eye coordination and building fine motor skills. They're also learning to follow instructions which are other skills that will be useful during school.

The unit and tiles stick easily to the fridge or any other magnetic surface, but can also be played with on other surfaces. Ours lives on the fridge, but often gets taken into the lounge room and played with on the table. It's also quite small and portable so would be easy to take to grandparents or friends houses for play dates, or even out to restaurants or coffee shops to keep kids entertained while eating out {just remember to take it in a carry bag so you don't lose any of the magnetic tiles}.

Bub loves playing with Scout both when I'm busy in the kitchen and at other times throughout the day. I love that it allows her to have independent play while I'm occupied, but it's still very interactive so she doesn't feel like she's playing alone. She just turned 4 and already knows her numbers and how to count to 20, but she still loves the challenge of finding the correct tile when Scout asks her questions. She also likes to quiz us on the answers too!

The Fridge Numbers Magnetic Set is recommended for 2-4yr olds and available in store now from Mr Toys Toyworld.

Toni x

Disclosure - We were gifted a Fridge Numbers Magnetic Set from V-tech toys for the purpose of reviews. All opinions are our own based on our experience using the toy. I did not receive payment for this review.

*This post contains some affiliate links which means I may earn a small commission, at no extra cost to you, should you make a purchase.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Scooting along with Globber

Bringing a second baby into a family is a time of upheaval and uncertainty for a family unit, especially for the older child who's going from single child status to big brother or sister. With this in mind we decided, before I was due, that we'd make a concerted effort to spend one on one time with bub so she didn't have such a drastic change from only child to having to share us all the time. 

Coincidentally, a couple of weeks before I gave birth I was asked if we wanted to try out the new Globber MyFREE Fold UP scooter and it couldn't have come at a more perfect time. The scooter not only gives bub something special that's only for her, but it's also given us a fun activity that we can do with her during our special one on one time.

The Globber MyFREE Fold Up is designed for 3yrs +  with an adjustable handlebar to grow with the child until a max of 50kg. It's a step up from her first Globber scooter as it's a standing only scooter without a seat attachment. She was also lucky enough to receive one with flashing LED wheels and I'm actually slightly jealous that it's hers and not mine {is that wrong?}.

As a toddler bub took quite a while to master her Globber My Free 4 in 1 scooter in the actual scooter mode, so I expected she might be a bit hesitant with the MyFREE Fold Up, but to my surprise she had it down pat within about 15 minutes. It was like watching her morph from a toddler into a big girl right in front of me. I guess having a baby makes older children suddenly look more grown up as well, but seriously watching your firstborn baby suddenly able to tackle a scooter without any help is another subtle reminder that they are in fact growing up whether you like it or not.

Globber also sent us a helmet to use with the scooter. It's the first helmet she's ever used and I thought it might be tricky getting her to wear it, but it has a simple magnetic catch lock which makes it really quick and easy to get on, she can even do it herself {when she has the helmet around the right way}. It also has a dial fit system allowing the band to be tightened easier for the perfect fit. It's so much easier than normal helmets which buckle together and can catch skin if you have them on too tight {yes that happened to me as a child and I was always scared putting them on}. The helmet has also been a great way to teach her about safety when riding her scooter, especially on concrete. We've implemented a no helmet no ride policy and now she always makes sure she has her helmet on before we take the scooter out. In fact she usually reminds us to grab her helmet before she grabs her scooter.

I'm not sure if it's because she's taller, older and more carefree, or because she felt more confident wearing a helmet, but either way she mastered riding her new scooter really easily. She didn't get disheartened or scared when she slipped off the first few times, if anything it actually made her even more determined to succeed. She persisted, wanting us only to watch and not help her, and after a really short time was confident enough to ride the scooter on both concrete and grass. Being able to do it herself has made her much more independent and confident in her abilities and she's constantly riding it around the backyard on her own or begging us to take her outside to ride around the neighbourhood with her. An added bonus from her wanting to ride the scooter all the time is that we're all getting more time outside in the fresh air and we're getting incidental exercise as we follow her around the local paths.

Our favourite features of the MyFREE Fold UP scooter

Easy to assemble and adjust
Like all Globber scooters the MyFREE Fold Up is really easy to assemble, it's literally a case of clicking pieces together. The handlebar is also adjustable to 3 different heights as your child grows by simply clicking the bar in and out as needed.

Easy to store
One of the best features of the MyFREE Fold Up is that the handlebar can be folded down flat against the base board with a click of the button. This allows the scooter to be easily stored under a bed, on a shelf or lent flat against a wall. It also makes them really easy to transport in the back of a car {especially if you already have a pram in the boot}.

Easy to ride
The MyFREE Fold UP is a 3 wheel scooter and low to the ground making it easy for younger kids to balance and control. It also has an optional steering lock. 

Safety features
The steering lock allows the scooter to switch between assisted steering and only going straight which is great while kids are still getting used to it. There's also a long covered rear brake making it easier for kids to brake themselves {although mine still prefers to just put her foot out to stop it, but I'm sure she'll master the brake eventually}.

Thanks to the team at Globber I have one MyFREE Fold UP scooter {RRP $180} to give away to one lucky reader. To enter just leave me a comment below letting me know why you'd love to win a MyFREE Fold UP scooter and complete the steps in the rafflecopter form {so I can contact you if you win}, it's that simple!

If you're having any issues leaving a comment {sometimes it can be a bit temperamental} shoot me an email or send me a message on my Facebook page and I can help you out.

Toni x

*Please note unfortunately the prize scooter doesn't come with LED wheels, sorry guys!*

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Competition commences upon publication and ends at 11:59pm August 24th 2017. One winner will receive a MyFREE Fold UP scooter from Globber RRP $180.00. Winner can choose their preferred colour from the options available once the competition has ended. Finding Myself Young will not be held liable should the prize be lost in transit. Competition is open to Australian residents only, excluding ACT. This competition is a game of skill and will be judged as such. All mandatory entry steps must be completed to constitute a valid entry. Incomplete entries will be deemed invalid and excluded from judging. Winner will have 72hrs to respond or prize will be redrawn. This competition is in no way endorsed, promoted or administered by Facebook.

Disclosure - We were gifted a Globber MyFREE Fold UP scooter and helmet for the purpose of review. All opinions are expressed based on our experience using the scooter. I did not receive payment for this review.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Goodbye fourth trimester

Everyone's been telling me for weeks to enjoy the newborn stage. Soak up every second of it and be in the moment because it goes past so quickly. I know everyone means well, however I dare say my well meaning friends and family have never had a newborn who was tongue tied and allergic to multiple foods.

You see the last 3 months didn't fly by in the blink of an eye, they dragged on and on and on in an endless sleep deprived groundhog day cycle of mind-numbing repetitiveness. And it wasn't repetitive lazy naps on the couch, or long moments spent lovingly staring into my beautiful new baby's eyes wondering how I ever created something so wonderful, although I admit there were a few fleeting moments of this {thankgod or I probably would've fallen head first into postnatal depression again}. No, our fourth trimester felt like 4329 days of continuous screaming, streams and streams of tears {hers and mine} and me wondering repeatedly why did I do this to myself? 

Maybe my infertility was the universe's way of telling me I should've never had another child?

I hope my relationship will survive this baby...

I hope I'll survive this baby.

I've spent many nights desperately clinging to an invisible ledge hoping I wouldn't be swallowed up whole into a big gaping abyss of postnatal depression and anxiety. I honestly don't know how I didn't fall off that ledge and plummet into a canyon of darkness. I know this may sound overly dramatic to anyone else who has 2 kids and you're probably thinking I'm an overreacting nutcase at this point in time, but let me assure you having a baby who seems to be allergic to the world is definitely no walk in the park. and most definitely not what I was envisioning when I tried and tried for months to fall pregnant again.

Our fourth trimester has been hours and hours of non stop screaming. Weeks and weeks of little to no sleep. Not being able to put her down because she's either screaming or finally sleeping, in which case I dare not move her or she'll revert back to screaming. It certainly hasn't been a bed of roses and loved up happy hormones. In fact I kind of feel like I've been cheated out of the experience I should of had. Where are my happy hormones? I want the euphoric high everyone goes on and on about, although as a second time mum I know babies don't always do what the books say they will, and lucky me I got 2 babies who've completely broken the newborn mould. I guess allergy babies do that though.

I've had to give up basically all food that tastes remotely good so I can continue breastfeeding. I could've easily gone insane from not eating food. God how I long to be able to go to the fridge or the cupboard and be able to just pick something up and eat it, and actually enjoy it, instead of having to read through every single ingredient or resort to making meals completely from scratch. I feel like I have some kind of foreign eating disorder. The good thing is though the longer you do it, the more it becomes normal, so even though I'm avoiding 95% of foods I once ate, it doesn't feel as hard anymore.

I honestly feel like I was teetering on the edge of insanity quite a few times during the past few months, but somehow we've muddled through and here we are three and a bit months later.

Three months is such a glorious age. It's like something just clicks and all of a sudden these tiny defenseless babies turn into little teeny people with personalities and abilities of their own. They start learning at a rapid rate and interacting with the world. Suddenly she allows me to put her down to explore play mats and toys {not for too long though, we don't want to push the envelope too soon, but I try and stretch it out a little more each day}. She can grab and hold her hands, toys, books and her sister's hair, all of which are insanely delightful to her {her sister not so much}. She's learning so many new things each and every day.

I feel like I'm finally enjoying motherhood again. I absolutely adore watching her experiencing things for the first time. I love our little chats, even during the early hours of the morning. I love watching her facial features slowly change over time. I love seeing her grow {but hate it at the same time because it means my teeny baby is already growing up}. I'm really appreciating and loving having the privilege of caring for this tiny little person and helping her to grow into the woman she'll one day be.

Life is good. It's certainly not perfect, her allergies still exist and everything is still a bit up and down there, but life is still good.

Now we just have teething and the four month sleep regression to deal with.

That's the awesome thing about babies, as soon as you think you have them figured out, they go ahead and change things again.

Toni x