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Memorial Weekend Sales are Great, but Let's Not Forget to Remember

Memorial Weekend Sales are Great, but Let's Not Forget to Remember

When most of us see the words “Memorial Day” start popping up in our inboxes, one of the first word associations that comes to mind is “sale,” right? I mean, just about every store has one over the course of the weekend (including us). From there, our minds start to wander on over to other associated thoughts like barbeque, camping, picnics, relaxing, time with friends… And this is all especially attractive now that the world is beginning to reopen and we’re all feeling that pull to get out, see people, stretch our legs, and throw that summer kick-off party. A holiday that’s all about food, fun, and sun??? Just what the doctor ordered!

 

But the thing is, while sunshine and togetherness are beautiful bonuses of the long weekend, it’s not what the holiday is really about—not at its core. Remembrance is what the holiday is about.

Memorial Day is a time to remember those who are no longer with us because they have sacrificed their lives for our freedoms.

 

Interestingly, veterans like my brother and I tend to get thanked for our service during Memorial Day weekend. And while the sentiment is very kind and we understand where it’s coming from, the holiday is not about us. Because, by the grace of God, we are still here. Thankfully, we are still on this Earth enjoying the sunshine. Enjoying the togetherness.

 Memorial Day is for honoring and remembering those who are not. Those who gave everything for the freedoms we enjoy this weekend and every weekend.



The holiday was first established in 1868 to honor the fallen soldiers of the Civil War. After the first World War, Decoration Day (as it was known then) was expanded to include all fallen veterans from any American war. And it is still so very relevant today…

In the past 20 years, more than 6,500 military members have died on duty, and an additional 100,000+ have committed suicide. Many of these fallen heroes were parents to young children. Somber? Yes. Painful to hear? Yes. But it’s our reality.

 

So does this mean we shouldn’t enjoy all the beauty and fun this holiday weekend traditionally brings? Absolutely not! These heroes fought so that we could enjoy times like these. They gave everything to ensure that we would have the freedom to relax. But while enjoying those peaceful, joyful moments, let’s dedicate space in our hearts and minds to remember what this holiday is truly about. And remember.

6 Must-Have Products Made BY Moms FOR Moms You Can't Live Without

6 Must-Have Products Made BY Moms FOR Moms You Can't Live Without

Parenting is a tough gig.

These tiny humans we're raisin' didn't come with instructions.

What gives?

You know that old adage, “it takes a village”?

It rings true even today.

Your village may look different than it did for parents long ago, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t every bit as relevant.

Now, we get to harness the power of technology.

We can find our people in online communities. We’re not limited to just neighbors, coworkers, and those in our local playgroup. We can have basically anything we need dropped at our doorstep with a few taps on our phone. We can keep in touch with friends and family far away through text, calls, and video chat. We’re always connected.

Something else that technology affords us?

The collective genius of other moms.

Moms are fantastic problem-solvers.

We see a need. We fill it.

So, to make your life easier, we’ve rounded up 6 awesome products you need TODAY.

These gems are made BY moms FOR moms.

And each one solves a problem you’ve likely been dealing with on a near-daily basis.

Even better, every one of these companies has MORE genius products that make life easier as well!  We've linked to all of the websites so you can check them out.

Let’s get started.

7 Must-Have Products Made BY Moms FOR Moms You Can’t Live Without

1. Busy Baby Mat

Does your little one constantly drop toys from the high chair?

If so, you aren’t alone. This is a problem every mom faces at one point or another.

We strap our little one in the high chair and hand them a few toys in hopes of cooking dinner, making a quick phone call, or mopping the floor without crawlers underfoot.

What really happens? We end up playing fetch.

And the more we pick up what our babies throw down, the funnier they think it is — meaning the more they throw their toys on the floor.

It’s a no-win situation.

That’s where the Busy Baby Mat comes in.

Made of food-grade silicone, it contains no lead, phthalates, BPA, BPS, or PVC (i.e. it’s safe for curious teethers!).

It attaches to any smooth surface with four sturdy suction cups and it has durable silicone straps that hold toys securely in place — no more fetch for mom!

The Busy Baby Mat is made for more than play though.

It also does double duty as a clean surface for baby’s food, particularly when eating out.

You never know what germs — or toxic cleaners — are lurking on restaurant tables.

To top it off, the Busy Baby Mat is ultra-portable and dishwasher safe for easy cleanup.

2. ScruBEE

Hand hygiene is more important now than ever before.

Except, getting kids to wash hands — erm, thoroughly — can be a challenge.

Enter, ScruBEE.

This nifty gadget is just what you need in every bathroom (and one in the diaper bag too!)

Its ergonomic design fits perfectly into tiny hands. It’s made from silicone and free of harmful chemicals. And it’s dishwasher safe for easy cleanup.

The ScruBEE is an inexpensive and compact tool that was created to help kids learn to wash their hands both thoroughly and independently.

But, because of its intelligent design, moms have figured out that it comes in handy for far more than teaching kids to wash up properly.

It also works in place of a loofah at bathtime, as an upgrade to your daily face cleansing routine, and as a hygienic alternative to germy sponges for dishwashing,

Best of all? Because of its low cost, this multipurpose product is a no-brainer!

3. Buckle Me Baby Coats

Car seat safety — a concern for every parent.

Of course, we all want our little ones safe as we take them to and fro.

But, what happens when the seasons change and the weather gets cold?

Every mom’s conundrum — how to keep your child warm AND safe in their seat.

We’re faced with the choice of putting our child in a heavy coat and having to loosen the straps to buckle them in (hint: not safe!).

Or bundling them up, only to unbundle them to strap them in, and bundle them back up when you get where you’re going.

Some moms have come up with creative fixes to this problem by keeping blankets in the car or buying car seat ponchos — hooded blankets made for the car seat.

The problem with those solutions is simply this: they’re cumbersome and, at times, compromise your child’s safety.

So, what’s the answer?

Buckle Me Baby Coats, of course.

It’s right there in the name — these coats (not just for babies, by the way!) give you the best of both worlds.
Warmth AND car seat safety.
Their ingenious design allows for warmth in all the right places and no bulk — meaning perfectly safe for car seats.
And they weren’t JUST made for car seats.
Buckle Me Baby Coats were designed to be worn outside the car too.
There isn’t really anything else like them on the market — these coats need to be a staple in your child’s winter wardrobe every.single.year. 
Since it's summer, it may not seem like the right time to buy a winter coat, but the cutest patterns sell out every year so jumping in on the pre-order isn't a bad idea!

4. Unbuckle Me

Do you have a hard time getting your child out quickly in the carpool line?

If they aren’t independently able to unbuckle their car seat straps, the answer is probably yes.

Quite frankly, it’s a pretty widespread problem.

Car seat buckles are anything but easy.

Did you know that it takes 9 lbs of pressure to unbuckle a child’s car seat?

Yes, you read that right.

No wonder it’s so hard for kids (and adults, let’s be real!).

If you’re looking for a straightforward, inexpensive fix to this everyday parenting struggle, Unbuckle Me is your answer.

This is a simple tool designed by a mom AND car seat technician that can be stored right there where you need it — in the car — and used by anyone needing a little extra help with difficult buckles.

Unbuckle Me is also great for those with arthritis or any condition causing hand pain or limited mobility.

Using basic physics, it works as a lever to provide the force needed to unbuckle a child’s car seat so you don’t have to.

Every single parent needs one of these in the car — you never know when it’s gonna come in handy.

5. Snoofy Bee

Changing your child’s diaper in public — every parent’s favorite thing.

Hmmm...we think not.

What is it about changing your child in a public space that makes it such an unpleasant task?

For starters, let’s talk about the lack of a proper changing table in so many places.

They’re just NOW finally getting the fact that dads can change diapers too and putting changing tables in men’s rooms.

But, there are still plenty of places that don’t have a changing table at all. Or, if they do, the straps are broken.

Or the table looks like it hasn’t been cleaned in months.

Where does that leave us?

Trying to change our babies in the car, in the stroller, in our laps, or laying a blanket on the dirty bathroom floor and hoping for the best.

That’s where Snoofy Bee comes in.

They’ve set out to fix this frustrating problem by creating not only a changing pad — but a better changing pad.

The Snoofy Bee changing pad has all kinds of upgrades from the standard diaper bag staple — so many that we can’t list them all here, but we’re sure gonna try!

One of the coolest features the Snoofy Bee changing pad comes with is a barrier that keeps your kids from sticking their hands into a wet or dirty diaper.

Best part? It’s removable and able to attach to your changing table at home too. This deluxe changing pad also comes with padding so your little one is comfy as can be, a waterproof exterior that’s easy to clean and disinfect, and a storage pocket to keep diapering essentials handy (thus eliminating the need for a bulky diaper bag for short jaunts out of the house!).

The Snoofy Bee makes a perfect addition to any mom’s baby registry (and the perfect baby shower gift to give to friends!).

6. Curious Baby Activity Cards

Babies are confusing creatures.

Cute and cuddly, sure — but there’s so much to know and understand about their growth and development.

It can feel really overwhelming at times.

You’ve read all the books, but whoa...information overload.

Where do you start? Are there things you can do to encourage and support their development?

Sure there are!

But Pinterest is a black hole that will leave you scrolling for days with a shopping list a mile long and no real plan.

That’s where Curious Baby Activity Cards come in.

They distilled the most important information regarding your baby’s development. They also put together tons of activities you can do with your baby — ages birth to 12 months. Then, they wrapped everything up together in a neat, little package that’s portable and easy to keep within reach.

Curious Baby Activity Cards are kept together on a ring clip, making them quick to flip through when you have a few minutes or need a little inspiration.

The very best part? These activities that encourage bonding with your baby were designed to be low-prep with no extra supplies needed.

That means no store runs — and in a worldwide pandemic when people are avoiding public places, that’s huge.

And it means you can spend intentional time with your baby working on exercises for growth and development during small pockets throughout your day — while your coffee brews each morning, while you’re getting them dressed and ready to head out the door, or while the water boils for dinner.

No muss, no fuss.

Just a whole lot of value in a deceptively small package — wayyyyy better than any book.

The Wrap-Up

There you have it — 6 must-have products designed BY moms FOR moms.

Like we said above, moms are the very best problem-solvers.

See a problem, find a fix — and thank goodness these moms did.

Be sure to check out these products and share this list with your friends!

Removing Food Stains from Your Busy Baby Mat

Removing Food Stains from Your Busy Baby Mat

What is food-grade silicone?

As parents, we’re saving the world, one diaper at a time. But we also face lots of pressure to save the environment and we’re given an assortment of sustainable baby products to choose from.

Whether we’re shopping for diapers, bibs, or bottles…we’re encouraged to be more conscious about the impact daily products have on the world and our baby’s health.

With environmental safety and health at the forefront, you’ll find that more products are being made of silicone. Silicone is a unique rubber that is used for a variety of consumer, health, and industrial applications. It’s often referred to as food-grade or medical grade, but both types of silicone offer the benefits of being non-toxic, durable, and versatile.

What’s the difference between these silicone types?

Each type of silicone has its own set of regulations set by the FDA; standards that overall support health, safety, and the environment.

Although their names are pretty much self-explanatory… “medical” grade silicone isn’t just used by your baby’s pediatrician. This type of silicone is made specifically for products and devices that are used inside or outside the body; such as implants, baby bottle nipples, menstrual cups, mouth guards, and more.

On the other hand, food-grade silicone isof courseused for products that meet food. 

Companies are finding new and innovative ways to use food-grade silicone for producing everything from cookware to Tupperware, to bibs, teethers, and even some breast pumps!

Not only is food-grade silicone safer, but it’s also extremely durable and lightweight. And we know it’s the perfect material for Busy Babies and Busy Moms alike.

While food-grade has a long list of benefits, there is one drawback. Using food-grade silicone with certain foods or ingredients can stain the material, sometimes permanently. 

What stains food-grade silicone mats?

Ironically enough…food can stain food-grade silicone! If your Busy Baby loves Italian or Indian food, you may have a little extra work ahead of you.

Any foods with tomato sauce, pesto, or turmeric can cause stains; depending on the color of your mat. Oil and flavor residue can also remain on the mats surface if it isn’t thoroughly cleaned after use.

Now…if you’ve already planned spaghetti for dinner tonight, don’t ditch your mat just yet. All you’ll need to do is put a little extra elbow grease into cleaning it after dinner.

What’s the best way to remove stains from food-grade silicone mats? 

Lucky for you...we’ve already done the footwork and tested a few different cleaning solutions on the mat. (And yeswe tested all 6 colors!)

 

Although we LOVE Dawn Dish soap as a regular cleaning agent, it doesn’t quite cut it when it comes to removing stains on our food-grade silicone mat.

Instead, we found out that creating a paste of out of water (or hydrogen peroxide) and baking soda does the trick.

And to top it off, creating your own cleaning mixture at home saves you money and is actually pretty simple!

Here’s how you do it:

  1. Grab a bowl for mixing
  2. Hydrogen Peroxide and baking soda to create a thick paste. We recommend using twice as much baking soda, as there is liquid. If the paste isn’t getting thick, add a little more baking soda to make it thicker.
  3. Once your paste is at a good consistency, rub it on the mat and let it soak for 10-20 minutes (the longer the better!)
  4. Rinse the mat off under hot water and let your mat air dry

If you’re still seeing stains on your mat afterward, simply rinse and repeat, but let the paste sit longer.  

 

The results are in! 

We’ve tested several different stain-causing foods on every color of our mat and found that most stains came out after following the steps above.

 Here’s what happened when we tried cleaning each color with the baking soda paste:

  • Yellow & Pewter – ALL the stains were easily removed
  • Pink, Spearmint, & Blue – The turmeric stains remained, but all others were removed
  • “OG” Orange – The orange mat never stained, no matter what we put on it. So, we’ve secretly named this our “OG” mat.

Moral of the story… turmeric stains are the hardest to remove. So, you may want to skip this ingredient in your next recipe OR grab an orange mat if you can’t resist it!

Does your baby have a favorite food that always stains their mat? Or do you have another cool way to clean your mat at home? 

Share your recipes and your cleaning success stories with us on Instagram @busybabymat! 

 

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