Surviving Parenthood

Luvs Diapers

by Mother of two

I got a box of Luvs.  Since baby number 3 is on her way, I am trying to save some money so I downgraded from Huggies (my preferred brand).  In my opinion, Luvs tries to emulate Pampers (probably because they have the biggest share of the market).  The diapers are thinner than Huggies and smell good, just like the Pampers.  It holds well but I still prefer Huggies diaper for bedtime.  The tabs are similar to Pampers but the folds are a little sharp along the edges facing the inner thigh.  I compensate for this by pulling the tabs closer to the middle since their diapers are looser.  The gel is also softer than Huggies so when the diaper becomes wet it tends to sag more.

Overall, I am satisfied with Luvs and I have no major complaints about them.  But my first choice is still Huggies over either Luvs or Pampers.

I order my diapers thru Amazon with Subscribe and Save & Amazon Mom discounts.  Size 4 diapers come out to roughly  $0.16 per diaper.  Huggies & Pampers would cost me closer to $0.20 per diaper.

Organic Apple Chips

by Mother of two

I love simple products when it comes to food.  Grandma just gave Little Lum a big bag of organic baked-dried cinnamon apple chips from “BareFruit”. They are crispy, not too sweet, and simply delicious.  They are made from organic Washington State Apples with no added sugar or preservatives.  Best of all they are made in the good old U.S.A.

I used to buy another brand from Costco, “Brothers All Natural Crisps”.  I stopped buying it because I discovered that they were made in China.  Sorry to the people of China. I spend extra purchasing organic products for my kids simply for peace of mind and the concept of organic products from China seem a bit contradictory to me given their safety records.

The apple chips from BareFruit also stay crispier longer than the Brother All Natural Crisps.  Because Brother All Natural freeze dry their fruits, once you open the bag the contents have to be eaten immediately otherwise moisture in the air will re-hydrate the fruit and they become soft and stale. This is why the come in smaller individual packets.

Cheapest Baby Formula Ever

by Mother of two

I have used Good Start Protect formula for both my babies. Good Start contains  “Unique Comfort Proteins for Easy Digestion”.  It also contains DHA, ARA & B. lactis (natural probiotic).  I initially used Emfamil for Little Lum when he was a newborn until he started to spit-up and as a result I switched over to Good Start.  With Little Wing, I have only used Good Start and I have never had a problem (knock on wood).

This week CVS has one of the best deals on Good Start (23.2 oz) formulas that I have seen.   CVS has both the Gentle (orange label) & Protect (green label) on sale for $21.99.  The offer is for a FREE, $10 gift card for every $30 purchase with a limit of 5 gift cards per week.

I bought seven (7),  paid a total of $153.93, and received $50 worth of gift cards.  Final price $14.85 each after the gift card, that’s over 30% in saving. I am stocked up!  This price even beats out Walmart & Amazon.


Cancer Causing Chemicals in Johnson & Johnson Baby Shampoo

by Mother of two

Parents Beware:  The Associated Press recently released an article regarding Johnson & Johnson baby shampoo.  Apparently, there are trace amounts of dioxane & quarternium-15, both are potential cancer-causing chemicals, in Johnson & Johnson Baby Shampoo & Wash.


I was freaked out after I read the article because we use Johnson & Johnson shampoo at home for both kids.  During my effort to find a replacement product, I looked up Aveeno Baby Wash & Shampoo (also made by J&J).  To my dismay Aveeno Baby Wash & Shampoo contains polyquarternium-10.  I am not a chemist but it sounds pretty similar to quarternium-15.


In the end based on all I’ve read the best product that we found as our replacement was Burt’s Bee Baby Shampoo & Wash.  It cost a little more, but there is no price on safety and besides that it is actually very cheap if you buy it online.


Amazon is selling Two (2) 12oz bottles for $11.71 with Subscribe & Save.  A single bottle would have cost almost $9 each at the local Target store, and that already is considered cheap.

Swaddling Blankets

by Mother of two

For sleepless parents who are having trouble keeping their babies asleep for longer then 30 minute intervals at night, I have a recommendation.  Try swaddling.  Swaddling can really help to achieve a deeper and longer sleeping periods for your babies.  The theory behind it is that the swaddling helps babies sleep better by mimicking the cozy, tight and secure environment that they have grown accustomed to inside the mother’s womb (As a side observation, I think it prevents their hands from hitting their own face and waking them up.) Don’t know if the scientific explanation is true, but I can tell you from first hand experience that this really works.

I first learned about swaddling when I had my first baby. At first I feared that Little Lum Lum might be uncomfortable.  The whole idea seemed silly.  In retrospect, my only regret is that I did not start sooner. We survived on 1 to 2 hour sleep stretches at night, and patiently waited for our baby to improve on his own.  After six (6) weeks of struggling we finally opened up to the idea and immediately saw a dramatic improvement on that very first night.  Not only did we get a more restful nigh, but so did our son. (He seemed less grouchy somehow.)

By then our baby was already over 10 lbs and I could not find a light weight blanket that was large enough to properly swaddle him.  I had to resort to using a few hand me down blankets from my coworker who had acquired them from her relatives in Canada. (Who knows why, maybe they have bigger babies in Canada or something.  That seemed like the only place where I could find the larger baby swaddling blankets.)

Fortunately, his time around with my Little Wing Wing, I received a nice pack of muslin blankets from Aden & Anais as a gift and was really excited to test them out.  They are large and breathable and just perfect for swaddling, especially in the warmer seasons.  In colder temperature, you can double up the blankets or just lay down an extra blanket on top for warmth.  The muslin fabric does have some give that may take some getting used to in comparison to the more traditional flannel blankets.  I find that after a day of use, the blankets do become a bit stretched out in certain areas, which allow my Little Wing Wing to slip out of his little cocoon.  Thus I like to use a fresh new blanket daily to keep him nice and snug.  The blankets will return to their normal form after you wash them.

Hopefully this will help other new parents get a little more sleep at night.  It might take you a few tries for this to work, but you will be grateful that you did. Good Luck out there.

You can pick this up at Amazon for around $35-$45 depending on the pattern with free shipping.