How I Ended Up Crying in the Middle of a Grocery Story Parking Lot

Last night turned into one of those nights that that you don’t believe could get worse but ends up getting worse.

I was called from daycare in the late afternoon because kiddo had a big accident. It all over the floor because it (the poop) leaked from his shorts. He was so beside himself that he ran into the bathroom crying. When I arrived, the mess from the floor was cleaned up but he was still in the bathroom – he wouldn’t let daycare mom touch him.

I got him partially cleaned and we came home and showered. Spirits improved and the three of us had a nice dinner of rice and dal (simple but tasty and nutritious). After dinner, kiddo was excited to go grocery shopping to get the rabbits’ food.

For a grocery store experience with two little ones, it was easy peasy. Kiddo snacked on green beans and an apple. Sister was smiling to everyone she met. No crying, yelling, or otherwise meltdowns we associate the grocery store and baby+toddler. The gods were on our side!

Hahaha, not so fast.

Once finished with shopping, we packed up baby into the car seat and then kiddo into his car seat. All of a sudden we heard “blurp blurp”. We looked over at sister, she had thrown up all over herself, the car seat, and the car. There was food everywhere.

In typical toddler style, my son says, “it’s a mess. my car is a mess! we need to clean this is.” Yes babe, we do. And no, I don’t know what’s wrong with sister.

Pulled baby and seat out of the car, then opened the trunk of the car. Kiddo climbed in and said, “me stay here. no car hit me.” Good idea.

There we were, cleaning baby’s car seat in the middle of the parking lot at the grocery store. She was on the ground with a nice coating today’s and yesterday’s food.

In typical parent style I didn’t have wipes, though we surprisingly had a roll of paper towels and an old bottle of water. Cleanup the old fashioned way. And the irony that the we were 100 feet from the doors of the grocery store wasn’t lost on me. The grocery store was this tantalizing night club you just couldn’t get access to.

In all the cleaning up, I was bummed out. I feel alone. Nobody stopped to help or speak to me. At least 30 people passed us by. One lady stopped by and handed me a box of tissues and said, “I’ve been there”, then walked off.

But in a parking lot full of people, I was alone with a 3 year old and puked up 8 month baby. Everyone was in their own world, perhaps staring at their grocery lists or looking at Instagram – too busy to stop by and say, “hey, let me help you mom.”

It was lonely. And depressing.

We pushed on, the three musketeers. I got baby cleaned up and back in the car seat. Kiddo was happy she was looking better. We went back to our usual banter of the color of cars. Slowly driving out of the parking lot, I hear “blurp blurp” again. I call out to kiddo and he says, “baby threw up again. no good baby.”

She vomited. Again.

Drove the car back into a parking space. Baby is giggling the whole time (puking is fun?!) and brother says, “no more throw up baby. Me is here, it’s okay. Me is here.” For all that he is, he is loving brother.

This time after pulling out the car seat and cleaning up even more vomit, I had tears. I don’t know why. Perhaps because I felt lonely that the world goes by and doesn’t look at you. Perhaps because I didn’t know why baby was throwing up again. Was she sick? Is the constipation making her vomit? Is she eating the wrong foods? Who knows.

I was somewhat lucky that my husband arrived to the local BART train station after the second vomit. He met us at the grocery store and took care of the rest of cleanup. Even though it was 45 minutes after vomiting first began, I wasn’t alone anymore.

If anything from this experience I learned that if you see a mother in need or looking upset, help her out. STOP. Go see what she needs, a couple minutes of your time would mean the world to her. It’s okay to put your phone away and look at the world.

Because you don’t want to end up crying in the parking lot of the grocery store.

3 Tips to Survive an International Trip with a Toddler and Newborn

That’s right folks, how do you survive traveling with a toddler and newborn across the world? You don’t.

Just kidding! You can travel with babies and toddlers but you need a few tips. And a lot of drinks. Hahaha.

#1 Think positively – This may sound like a bunch of juju, but you are going to make it to the destination. There maybe a lot of crying, screaming, and wondering why you choose to torture yourself, but you and the kids will reach the final destination and hotel in one piece. Take a deep breath and know you are embarking on an experience together – that is priceless.

#2 Entertain & Food
– Depending on the age of your kids, you can provide them with some entertainment. On long distance flights this may mean a lot of toys and creative ideas, short haul flights have it easy. Pack toys and books that your kids like and are light weight. Younger toddlers do well with magnets, stickers, washi tape, and lightweight books. Older toddlers can do sticker books, Duplos, dolls, cars and other imaginative play.

Pack snacks! Lots of good snacks. Don’t bring out the candy and junk food because the last thing you need is a hyperactive toddler. Pack Cheerios (puffs), small sandwich bites, non-juicy fresh fruit like bananas, blueberries, cut apples, rice crackers, cheese sticks, pouches, water bottle and milk.

#3 Give yourself a break – There will be meltdowns. You will cry, the children will cry, everyone will cry. It’s okay. Hang tight. Breathe (see tip #1!). Eat an extra chocolate for yourself. Have a drink. Don’t enforce all the rules you have at home, though please don’t be the parent who puts headphones on and ignores the kids. When you reach your destination, take a hot shower. You deserve it – love yourself.

I hate the cliche that “you can do it!” because traveling across the continent, the Pacific, the Atlantic on a plane with young ones is terrifying. All I can say is, you are not alone.

How Much Does a Newborn Cost?

There are a lot of calculators and articles telling us that babies are expensive. Really expensive. And they are partly correct, babies are expensive; but babies can also be reasonably priced.

I went through and calculated the cost of the first year of having baby. The largest cost will come from medical care, with most of it resting on labor and delivery. After that, formula/food, diapers, one time purchases (stroller, crib), come next.

Here is what I spent (I rounded up to make the numbers digestible) on our first year of having a baby in the Bay Area.

**Medical:**
*Labor and delivery* – if you count this (I do!) – will eat your deductible right up. Mine was $3500.

*Wellness checks* – Baby visits the doctor a LOT the first year but luckily most of these visits are fully covered through employer corporate insurance or Obamacare (or maybe not in the future…).

*Not-wellness checks* – Baby will inevitably get sick. And when sick, visit urgent care if they are open, BEFORE going to the hospital (unless of course the baby has stopped breathing, is bleeding profusely, has something broken, etc…then 911 it is). Urgent care visits are a fraction of the cost of a basic ER visit.
Case in point:
Urgent care: $30
X-ray at urgent care: $90

ER visit: $400
Doctor’s overview at ER: $100

Pediatrician co-pay: $10-30

Let’s assume your baby does at least one of these things throughout the year. That adds up to: $650 PLUS labor/delivery

*Medicine* – Gripe water, tylenol, benadryl, meds add up fast. Let’s call a solid $100 on medicine. And this doesn’t include prescription drugs.

**Housing:**

I don’t know why blogs bother to include the cost of housing in the cost of a child. Duh they take up space. But decreasing their space does not change your housing costs. And it doesn’t change your mortgage. No matter what, your little bloodsucker is taking space. For the sake of simplicity, I’m skipping this.

**Diapers:**

Months 1-2 – 10-12 diapers/day = 12*2*30 = 720 * $.18 diaper = $129.60
Months 3-5 – 6-10 diapers/day = 10*3*30 = 900 * $.18 diaper = $162
Months 6+ – 5-6 diapers/day = 6*7*30 = 1260 * $.18 diaper = $226.8
Wipes: $100
Butt cream: $100 (they’re not expensive, but you’ll end up trying 10 different brands before one works for you. Hahaha)
Total cost for diapers and wipes: ~$2300

Nanny/Daycare:
This is where the numbers diverge. General rule is that if you hire a nanny, they will negate one of your incomes (they cost anywhere from $15-$30/hour), and daycare costs are anything between $500-$2000/month depending on where you live.

I will only say that if you stay at home, please get some help a couple times a week. You need the peace and the quiet and sanity and the ability to regroup.
Total nanny/daycare costs: $1000-$20000/year

**Clothes, toys, and cute things:**

There is SO MUCH you can buy for your adorable alien. Buy everything new, and you’ll run up the registry fast. Mix between new and used (have those friends dump clothing/toy lots), and your costs are faring much better.
Cost: $500-1000
Big ticket items are strollers, crib/dresser/changing table (though please don’t waste $1000+ on a collection), and the car sear.
Strollers: $300-$1200
Car seat: $200-400
crib/dresser/changing table: $300-$1500

Toys and books: Count on this to be a black hole of everything adorable.
Cost: $1000

So what’s the total damage for that first year of life?
**$9000-$12000
or ~$30000 because you require full-time daycare.**

Ready for them to go to college? :O

The Ultimate Must Have Newborn Baby Products

After a long time in the making, I’ve finally completed my newborn must have list! This is inspired by my friend R who is expecting a baby next year and is overwhelmed with what to buy.

I wanted to keep the list simple and easy. The baby market is massive and there is so much you can get lost in. While there are plenty of fancy things you can buy, newborns are fairly simple creatures; they just need clothes, milk (breast milk or formula), a safe place to sleep, and a way to be transported.

For some sections, like strollers, I listed budget friendly and splurge items. Splurge products are more expensive but not necessary something you need.

Note: There are affiliate links below. If you click and buy anything, I may make a small commission (and it doesn’t affect your cost). Your support keeps this blog running. Thank you!

**Strollers:**
Splurge: Uppababy Vista Stroller, Bugaboo
Budget Friendly: Uppababy Cruz Stroller, City Mini, Graco

Buying for twins: Uppababy Vista, Bugaboo, and City Select all

**Car Seats:**
For newborn babies, you can get a bucket seat (see pic below) or a convertible car seat that lasts a few years (from newborn to toddler/child). The benefit of bucket seats is that you can remove them and insert them into the stroller. Standard car seats cannot be removed for in-out use but have a longer lifetime.

Depends on the type of stroller you buy, you’ll need to get a compatible baby bucket car seat. Top line car seats are Maxi Cosi, Nuna; more economic friendly car seats are Graco and Britax.

Also good to have is a car seat mirror.

**Diapers:**
Honestly, it doesn’t matter what brand of diapers you get, as long as you buy ones in your budget and style.

Budget friendly diapers tend to be the store brand, Up and Up (Target).

Environmentally friendly diapers: Naty (biodegradable, compostable, and eco-friendly and cheapest at Target), Seventh Generation (eco friendly diapers), Honest Company (less chemicals used), Earth’s Best (biodegradable and eco-friendly). Babyganics (less chemicals used but not biodegradable.).

Major brands: Pampers, Huggies

Don’t forget the wipes, diaper pad, and diaper trash/diaper genie.

Bathtub: A simple tub is great. If you have space, you can get a standard size baby tub. For space conscious bathrooms, a folding tub like Plaj works.

Bottles: Bottles are tricky; every baby is different and bottles deliver formula/breastmilk at different speeds.

In general, for newborns to four months, use nipple size 1 from the bottle manufacturer. Around 5/6 months, you can switch to nipple size 2.

Some bottles help with reflux or colic (though not proven through any research studies), some are ergonomic, and some are simple.

Personally, I like the Munchkin bottle. You can try out a single bottle with nipple size 1, before buying a 3 pack package (better pricing). The Munchkin bottles also come with adapters for the breast pump, which means you can directly pump into the bottle.

I also used the Lansinoh bottle when my firstborn was 5 months old.

Other parents love Dr. Brown’s (either in plastic or glass bottles), Aventi, and Medela.

**Pacifiers:**
Like bottles, pacifiers are dependent on the each baby preferences. Almost every bottle manufacturer makes pacifiers from newborns to twelve months (after one year, baby should be kicking the habit).

Many gift bags that stores give when you create a baby registry will include a pacifier. Try it out and see what sticks.

Health: Thermometer, nasal aspirator, Tylenol, Ibuprofen, gripe water, butt cream or lotion , baby wash. You can skip the baby oil and bubble bath for now.

For moms who are breastfeeding: lanolin cream, nipple soothies (the most amazing thing ever!)

**Clothes:**
Depends on the time of the year baby is born, you’ll need a mix of cool to warm clothes.

To buy a whole collection for a reasonable price, your best is to search Facebook Marketplace. Many moms will sell giant lots of newborn-3 months, 3-6 months, 6-12 months, etc clothes/accessories. They can be as cheap as $.50 an item. Considering how quickly babies go through them, it isn’t until they are older, you need to buy them. And from experience, the older baby gets, like toddler hood, the harder it is to buy secondhand (I don’t know why).

Buy the basic lot of clothes and your special items as splurge. Holiday outfits, dresses, and trendy brands for example.

Remember if you are in a cold climate, you will need more full sleepers and pants.
5-10 Onesies
4-8 Full sleepers
6-12 Pairs of Socks
3-5 Pants – My favorite pants are the ones with the footed covers. This way, you can skip the socks and the search 5 minutes later when baby kicks them off!

**Swaddles:**
My favorite is Aden and Anais, the market standard. Made from muslin, they are soft and a bit stretchy.

**Nursery:**
This is when I highly recommend to get these items used. Facebook Marketplace, Nextdoor, and Craigslist are the best places to buy nursery.

Truly, nobody cares except you how the nursery looks and how much you spent. We bought our bassinet used for $50, the crib (an IKEA one) also for $50 (and the parents gave us lots of extra things), and a small IKEA dresser for $75. We instead splurged on a high end stroller system that would last years.

* Crib + mattress or bassinet
* Dresser
* diaper changing table

Splurge:

* Rug
* Quilt set – this is really just for decoration as baby won’t be using blankets for at least a year
* Rocking chair glider

Wraps & Carriers:
Baby K’tan or Lillebaby

Here’s a quick shopping guide at some of the favorites listed above and other essential baby products. Be sure to click the right arrow below to scroll right and see all the products 🙂

Gift Guide: Books & Toys for Babies 0-12 Months

Call it the holiday gift guide, the Christmas guide, or the baby guide, these have been my favorite books and toys for my son (and hopefully daughter!).

This guide is for babies under one year old. Head over to the 12-24 months guide for babies 1-2 years old.

I haven’t gender separated the books or toys because I don’t believe children should be told what toys are for “boys” and what are for “girls”. I picked toys that I/he love(s).

PS: These are affiliate. If you click through and buy, I’ll make a small commission that keeps this site alive. Thank you! <3 Everything Is Mama
by Jimmy Fallon, Miguel Ordonez (Illustrator)

Teaching your babies to say words? Of course you are. But no matter what you say, they all end up with ‘mama’. This is a cute book by comedian Jimmy Fallon. Check out his [DADA book](http://amzn.to/2zRllpo) too.

Goodnight Moon

A classic book for toddlers and children. I felt this book wasn’t good for babies under 10 months because the details in the images are tiny. And babies love high contrast, large images. But this is a must-have in your babe’s book collection.

Cottage Door Press Books
Babies Love Animals: Lift-a-Flap Board Book
![](/content/images/2017/11/Screen-Shot-2017-11-20-at-11-54-32-AM.png)
I am a big fat of CDP’s books. The illustrations are bright, big, and appealing for little brains. They have the lift a flap books, large board books for numbers and [letters](http://amzn.to/2zSVKwb), and books about holidays. These books will definitely last you from 6 months through the toddler years.

Toys:
High Contrast Black and White Cards for Baby

Printed on thick stock, these gorgeous illustrations in black and white will keep any baby entertained.

Infantino Baby Turtle Activity Mirror

Babies are narcissists. Really cute narcissists. And what do you buy a narcissist? A mirror. An adorable stuffed turtle mirror.

Stackers and sorters:
Every toy brand makes some type of stacker or sorter toys. Babies and toddlers love these toys. At the beginning they are disorganized but over time you will see them blossom and magically stack and sort. My son wasn’t fond of the traditional stackers but he was crazy for measuring cups and blocks.
The classic sorters and stackers come from Fisher Price, Melissa and Doug, Grimms, Haba

Gift Guide: Books & Toys for Young Toddlers 12-24 Months

Call it the holiday gift guide, the Christmas guide, or the baby guide, these have been my favorite books and toys for my son. I haven’t gender separated the books or toys because I don’t believe children should be told what toys are for “boys” and what are for “girls”. If your kid loves them, then let them play and explore.

PS: These are affiliate links. I may make a small commission (that doesn’t affect your price) that keeps this site alive. Thank you! <3 Books: Richard Scarry’s Cars and Trucks and Things That Go
by Richard Scarry

A classic paper book with all sorts of crazy cars, trucks, buses, and boats. For a baby, you can get the
Cars and Trucks, from A-Z.

The Going-To-Bed Book by Sandra Boynton

Time to sing and dance and get to bed! We loved reading this book. While we didn’t read it right before bedtime, my son learned about the bedtime routine concepts in a fun way. Sandra Boynton has written many books that talk about life concepts, so it’s worth checking out her authored books.

ABC Animal Party Board Book

Bright and simply illustrated, my son loved this book as a baby. Now, 2.5 years, it’s again back on his favorite’s list.

Toys:
Grimm’s Large 12-Piece Rainbow Stacker

A post shared by Preeti (@bindisandbottles) on


This unassuming rainbow wood stacking blocks is magical. At first, we didn’t know what to do with it. Soon, we figured out how to stack them, mix them with other toys, and create art pieces. Made in Germany of solid wood, this is a present that will last years.

Manhattan Toy Skwish Classic Rattle and Teether Grasping Activity Toy

Magna-Tiles Clear Colors 74 Piece Set

On the pricey side, magna tiles are awesome. Build in three dimension with triangles, rectangles, square, and trapezoids. A classic STEM/STEAM toy, your toddler, and their friends, will love these. For a budget friendly version, you can buy the off-brand tiles.

Baby Toys & Essentials Shopping List

Wee Gallery Organic Muslin Swaddle • Wee Gallery • $28
Art Cards For Baby – Original Collection • Wee Gallery • $8
Art Cards For Baby – Safari Collection • Wee Gallery • $8
Toddler Wee Gallery Reversible Sunshine/stars Playmat • Wee Gallery • $89.95
Wee Gallery Woodland Animals Growth Chart • Wee Gallery • $38
Toddler Wee Gallery Set Of 3 Animal Nesting Dolls • Wee Gallery • $42
Infant Baby Jogger City Mini Stroller & City Go Infant Car Seat Travel System • Baby Jogger • $492.99
Graco Breaze Click Connect Travel System • Graco • $229–243
The Honest Company Honest 40-Pack Newborn Diapers in Teal Tribal Pattern • The Honest Company • $13.99
Burt’s Bees Baby Bee Sweet Memories Keepsake Photo Box • $19.99
Burt’s Bees Baby Bee Cream to Powder • Burt’s Bees • $9.99
Add to Cart • $8.99
thinkbaby Baby Shampoo & Body Wash – 16oz • Thinkbaby • $9.99
Noodle & Boo Extra Gentle Baby Shampoo, 16 oz. • Noodle & Boo • $16
Calendula Baby Shampoo & Body Wash by Weleda (6.8oz Shampoo) • Weleda • $12.50
Burt’s Bees Baby Shampoo & Wash, Calming – 21oz • $10.19
aden + anais Silky Soft Sleeping Bag • Aden Anais • $28–37
aden + anais Metallic Swaddles • Aden Anais • $50
Carter’s Baby Carter’s 3-pc. Lamb Babysoft Take-Me-Home Coverall • Carter’s • $13.99
Okie Dokie 6-pk. Lowcut Crew Socks – Baby Girls newborn-24m • $4.99
Add to Cart • $16.95
Add to Cart • $18.95
Burt’s Bees Baby® Newborn Sweater Cardigan in Grey • $29.99
Burt’s Bees Baby® Newborn Rugby Stripe Footie Pajama in Navy/Green • $12.99
Cotton Rich Elf All in One with Hat • Marks and Spencer • $23
UNIQLO Newborn Crewneck Long-sleeve Onesie (set Of 2) • Uniqlo • $9.90
UNIQLO Newborn Crewneck Long-sleeve Onesie (set Of 2) • Uniqlo • $9.90
Etsy Zero Fox Given Onesie®, Baby Shower Gift, Hipster Baby, Boho Baby Clothes, Funny Onesies, Newborn Ph • $16.99
Ralph Lauren Polo Bear Cotton Coverall White Multi Newborn • Polo Ralph Lauren • $20.63
Tea Collection Newborn Cycle Footed Romper in Navy • Tea Collection • $19.99
Lansinoh Soothies Glycerin Gel Pads • Sold Out
Lansinoh Simple Wishes Hands Free Breast Pump Bustier • Lansinoh • $30.99
rene rofe (Newborn Girls) 3-Piece Little Star Bodysuit & Pants Set • Rene Rofe • $6.99
Munchkin® White Hot® 4-Pack Safety Spoons • Munchkin • $5.99
Munchkin Bottle & Nipple Brush • Munchkin • $2.99
Munchkin LATCH 3pk BPA Free Baby Bottle Set • Munchkin • $19.99
Skip Hop Explore & More Animal Car, Bee • Skip Hop • $9.99
Skip Hop – Hop Moby Bath Mat Accessories Travel • Skip Hop • $15
Lego Duplo Town Truck & Tracked Excavator • Lego • $19.99
UPPAbaby® VISTA Stroller and Bassinet in Samantha • UPPAbaby • $703.99
Infant Uppababy 2017 Mesa Infant Car Seat • UPPAbaby • $299.99
Munchkin Nursery Fresh 3-pk. Diaper Pail Refill Bags • Munchkin • $12.74
Medela Breast Milk Storage Bags 100ct • Medela • $19.99
Medela® Tender CareTM 2 oz. Lanolin • Medela • $7.99
Medela Tender Care HydroGel Pads – 4pk • Medela • $7.99
Fisher-Price Brilliant Basics Rock-a-Stack • Fisher-Price • $6
Fisher-Price Brilliant Basics First Blocks • Fisher-Price • $9