Tablet Update: Sprout’s Cubby vs Fuhu’s Nabi 2s

One of my most popular posts is [REVIEW: The Sprout Cubby Tablet for Kids] It’s a Cubby…not a chubby. I thought I’d do a little update on our current kid friendly tablet situation.

Ben used his Cubby regularly, it served us well, until my dad sat on it and the screen cracked lol.. I still have no bad things to say about the Sprout Cubby. However, we decided against buying another one. It just so happened that the Nabi 2S Tablet was on sale that same week so we jumped onto the Nabi/Fuhi ship and haven’t looked back.


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I’d like to go through a few things I’ve noticed in regards to comparing the Sprout Cubby and Fuhu’s Nabi 2S Tablet:

The Nabi2s keeps a charge throughout the day, it’s much easier to put on the charger too (for those that had issues with Cubby’s charger).

As I stated in my original post about the Sprout Cubby, the Nabi’s touchscreen  is noticeably more responsive than the Cubby (for me at least). I still don’t think my son notices a difference.

There is still tons of pre-loaded content but everything is easy to delete/uninstall in Mommy/Daddy mode.

The bumper that came with the Nabi is also more durable than the one that was on the Cubby. My son can’t take this one off without help and it’s nice and squishy/absorbent for the occasional drop. Speaking of bumpers. There are TONS of accessories available to purchase for the Nabi Tablet(s). When we purchased our Nabi 2s a screen protector was included and it has done well. We haven’t gotten a chance to use any of the other accessories yet. We’ll probably get a new bumper in the future, if there’s ever a good sale.


All of the Pros of the Sprout Cubby were still a Pro with the Nabi 2s. If you recall, my main concern was having Google Play readily available (the Nabi Jr. did not have it installed). The Nabi 2s had Google Play installed from the get-go. No need to root or proceed with a workaround. The ONLY thing that the Nabi 2s lacked was the rear facing camera, but we could do without it. Ben isn’t interested in photography at the moment; he’s more of a cardboard box playhouse kinda kid.


If anything, the Nabi 2s solved most, if not all, of the Cons I had listed in my previous Cubby review. I’ve also noticed that the Sprout Cubby isn’t that easy to come by anymore and the Nabi 2s is priced very competitively with it now (they both go for around $80 at Walmart). If you can find them both at a store, I’d definitely check and see what the pricing is, it seems to fluctuate for whatever reason. If they’re about the same price, I would go with the Nabi 2s hands down. Try them both out and see for yourself. If you have any questions (about either tablet) drop them down in the comment section below!


Do you have any recommendations for a budget friendly, toddler friendly, tablet?

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Ben at 2.5 Years

Benjamin is halfway to 3 years old so I thought I’d do a little update on how things have been.

On Sleep:

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Ben has always been a cuddler. From the moment he was born, he wanted to be cuddled, he wanted to feel human heat when he sleeps. He didn’t want to be swaddled, he didn’t want to be rocked, he just wanted to feel some sort of skin on skin. That has changed one bit.. It’s a bit of a struggle because Mr. Mac and I are trying to get him to sleep in his own bed, not sure if that’ll happen anytime soon though. He sleeps through the night, no problem. However, he still has this thing where one of his limbs has to be touching someone, in order to go to sleep. Maybe he’ll grow out of it, idk. Hopefully we’ll come to some sort of a successful system by the time baby O arrives.

Milestones:

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Ben has been talking up a storm these past few weeks. Even when he was feeling a little down because of a cold, the kid would not keep silent. He’s full of ideas and questions and doesn’t hesitate to share them with us.

As you all know, he’s pretty much potty trained now (24/7 in undies, huzzah!)

His Lego building skills have greatly improved, he’s actually building things that look like what he’s intending (animals w/ limbs, robots, buildings, rockets, etc.)

His imagination is also growing like crazy. I’ll catch him talking talking (in character) with his action figures.Things like:

“Captain America, you better run!”
“No Hulk, you can’t catch me, I’m too fast!”
Cue toys being tossed across the room and historical laughter.

It’s quite fun to observe.

Our current struggles:

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For the past week or so, Ben has been testing his tantrum limits with everyone. He screams, he becomes a dead weight, he runs and tries to get away, the whole nine yards. We’ve tried different approaches at disciplining him but works best now is to sit him down until he’s calm and then we all talk through what’s going on. It’s a work in progress..

Our current victories:

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Potty training (obviously still excited about this one lol.)

Cleaning! Ben has been doing great with cleaning up any kind of mess. Be it his toys, food/dishes, clothes. He’s such a helper around the house and he takes pride in keeping all of his toys clean and nicely put away by the time he heads to bed.


What has your kiddo been up to these days?

10 Potty Training Essentials

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Ben has been diaper free for a little over a week now, here are the 10 potty training essentials that worked for us.


  1. Daniel Goes to the Potty (Book) – Ben has always loved Daniel Tiger, we bought him this book maybe a year ago. Mr. Mac and I like the television show a lot and this book goes along with the potty episode that airs. The little potty song is great to sing on the way to the toilet.
  2. Lots of toddler specific underwear (we use Paw Patrol and Minions) – Potty training wouldn’t be complete without underoo made for kiddos. Ben is currently obsessed with Paw Patrol and enjoys Minions too. We found nice little packs at Target but the links are for Amazon, in case there isn’t any Target stores nearby.
  3. Treats – Tell me I’m not the only one who gave my kid a treat for every successful toilet trip. We used M&Ms but gummy bears might be easier if you’re traveling since they don’t get as melty and gross. M&Ms worked fine at home though.
  4. Easy to remove bottoms (Adidas Basketball Shorts, in our case) – Now that Ben is pretty much fully trained, he does fine in whatever bottoms we put on him. To start with, however, was a different story. He was still learning how long he could go holding his bladder, easy removal was a must for us. Luckily, we have tons of comfy basketball shorts for him. It made cleanup a lot easier too, if he ever had an accident.
  5. Baby Wipes – Lots of baby wipes are always a good thing. We always go with the Kirkland/Costco brand. They’re softer and they stay moist longer than other brands we’ve tried. These can be used in multiple ways: cleaning up #2s, wiping down public seats, wiping up accidents (you’ll probably want to disinfect too though), wiping your own hands, wiping your child’s hands, etc. We’ve used these since Ben was a newborn and they’ve never done us wrong.
  6. PRIMO Folding Potty with Handles – This is really nifty to have when out in public. Trust me when I say I have a slight anxiety about going into a public restroom BY MYSELF, let alone with my toddler. This folding seat slips easily into a diaper bag/backpack; I usually slip it in a ziplock baggy for clean storage afterwards. I put this on a public toilet and it gives Ben something trusty to hold on to. Super nifty.
  7. Ziplock Gallon Storage Bag – As mentioned above, we use this to store the folding seat after we use it, I don’t deep clean the seat until we get home. Also used to put soiled underoo in, if needed. And let’s face it, we can never have too many ziplocks in our diaper bags.
  8. Disposable Potty Protectors – We put these under the folding seat mentioned above, just for extra protection. These cover the entire top portion of the toilet, not just the top of the toilet seat. Really nifty to have on hand if you forget your folding seat too. Something is better than nothing, amiright?!
  9. Fisher-Price Royal Stepstool Potty – Before the real deal, Ben started out with this potty. His tushy was a little on the large side so we could never get a successful #2 with it, but he was able to go #1 a couple times. It plays a little tune when something goes in the potty and Ben used to get a kick out of it. Definitely a good encouragement. Nowadays, we use it as a stepstool to get on to the “normal” toilet and to wash his hands.
  10. Foaming Hand Soap – I haven’t tried this specific product yet but it’s on my shopping list. We’ve been using regular hand soap and it works but it gets a little messy and gooey at times. Foaming hand soap would be much more convenient at this time and it always helps if it’s “kid approved”. This particular hand soap is a florescent and fun green and has a melon scent.

What are some potty training essentials in your household?

Pregnancy: The Second Time Around

If you’ve been keeping up with my previous posts, you already know that the Mr. and I are expecting baby #2 (huzzah!)

It only took 3 cycles of temping to finally get the party started, I’m grateful it didn’t take very long. I can only imagine how crazy I would’ve gotten. After peeing on, what felt like a million, sticks we finally got a positive result!

I expected this pregnancy to be just like the first, but I was wrong.

1. Wacky symptoms. With Ben, the only symptom I had was the irrational tiredness train and I wanted all of the food. This time around, I had all-day sickness. I couldn’t eat more than a handful and I lost weight in the first trimester. I got hit by a cold, which didn’t help and had to suffer through a sinus infection without medication. Everyone said it was a girl because all of my symptoms were the opposite of what I had with Ben. I guess they didn’t realize he was a unicorn pregnancy and I had basically zero symptoms with him in the first place. This time I had tons of headaches, terrible acne and craved salty instead of sweet. Just goes to show you that every pregnancy is different, no matter what the sex is.

2. Big belly arrived early. I showed so much earlier than I had with Ben; I don’t think I looked pregnant until the 3rd trimester. With this pregnancy, I started showing around 14 weeks. (Side note: My apologies for the horrid 2013 photo quality!)


3. Movement. I didn’t feel Ben move until 19ish weeks. This pregnancy, I felt movement around 13 weeks (super early!) My doctor didn’t believe me when I told him I felt the flutters. I’m not sure if I’m just more aware of the movement this time around, or if I just have a super active karate master in there.

4. Less belly shots. With Ben, I took a picture every. single. week. I was a little neurotic about it all. I find myself forgetting to take MONTHLY pictures, this time around. I also don’t obsess over the iPhone app updates that are pushed to my phone every week. “Yeah, yeah…baby is getting bigger. I know.”

5. The ultrasound. At Ben’s anatomy scan ultrasound we had to wait for him to uncross his legs to see the goods. This time around, baby #2 went spread eagle from the get go. There was no questioning it, baby #2 was a BOY. My husband was shocked, he had thought it was a girl. Not going to lie, I struggled with a small amount of gender disappointment. By the time we were done, though, I was excited to start a Pinterest board of how I’d decorate their dinosaur/astronomy/superhero room; gender disappointment didn’t last long. With Ben’s scan, I didn’t hold my bladder, I drank the water too late so I was comfy cozy the whole way through. With baby #2, I had a full bladder and almost peed myself walking from the car to the office, no bueno. The tech was nice enough to let me free the waterfall after a few shots with a full bladder.


So now I sit here at 23 weeks, my ribs are killing me, and my belly touches my keyboard as I type. Many things are the same but there are so many differences with this pregnancy. I’m ready for August to be here. I don’t enjoy pregnancy but the reward makes it all worth it.

Baby O, your pops, big brother and I can’t wait to meet you.

How did your first pregnancy compare to your second/third/fourth/etc.?

Let’s Talk Potty Training

This past week we’ve started Benjamin with potty training. He’s almost 2.5 now and with baby #2 on the way, it’d be nice to have at least one child out of diapers. Please note that all children are different and what worked for us, may not work for you.

I had a three day weekend and I decided I would use this time to try and see where Ben was at with his potty readiness. We had tried a couple times when he was about to turn 2, and he just wasn’t ready. There was a lot of screaming and running away back then. I didn’t expect much different, this time around.

DAY 1

The morning started off nice, toddler sleepy smiles with crusty eyes are the best. I felt his diaper and it was dry. I briefed him on what was going to happen, no more diapers; just big boy chones (slang for underoo in our household). He was pretty excited and I brought him to the bathroom for our first morning pee. He emptied his entire bladder. SUCCESS! We did the potty dance and washed our hands.

The next battle was having him choose between two different styles of underwear. Minions vs. Paw Patrol…He went with Paw Patrol, so now there’s a face of a dog on my son’s rear end.

It was a warm day so I decided to let him run around with no pants, just underwear. It was easier to get him out of just one layer instead of two. We made trips to the potty every 15-30 mins, even if it was just to try. I would do that potty dance even if it was a dribble of pee. I tried to stay away from asking: “Ben, do you have to pee?”, “Do you want to try the potty?”, “What about poop?” and stuck with direct statements: “Time to go try the potty.”, “Bring your toy, let’s sit on the toilet to pee.” I would remind him every 10 minutes or so to let us know if he has to use the potty.

We had multiple successful trips going #1. We had 2 accidents, not bad. The second accident was on our way to the toilet, he had ran up to me and grabbed his junk as if he were trying to say “HEY MOM, THIS THING IS GOING TO LEAK!” By the time we made it to the bathroom, the pee was already on the floor. He was sad and disappointed with himself, I reassured him that he’s not in trouble and we’ll just try again next time!

We put him back in his diaper that evening after his last trip to the bathroom, just to be on the safe side.

DAY 2

Great potty day, multiple successful pees. No accidents this day! I also extended our potty trips to every 30-45 mins. Ben was very excited to make frequent trips to the potty, his grandma promised him a new toy if he didn’t have an accident so he was determined to get that toy.

After several trips to the potty just to fart, it was go time. I was pretty sure I’d be going poop hunting by the end of the day. Much to my surprise, it wasn’t too bad. He came up to me that evening and said “Momma, I need to poop..” he was nervous. At first, he didn’t want to sit on the potty so I let him run around butt naked for a bit. He was upset I wasn’t putting a diaper on him. I reassured him that he didn’t need one and we would go to the potty when he was ready to go. Eventually, he asked me “Potty now?”

We went to the bathroom and he kept saying “Uh-oh..oh no..the poop!” Poor guy was scared of what was going to happen when the poop came out, with no diaper to catch it. After the big kahuna landed in the toilet, it was a breeze. Almost like he had gotten over his fear of pooping in the potty!

Back in diapers again right before bedtime.

DAY 3

Woke up early, couldn’t get him to sit on the potty before church. Regretfully put him in a diaper for the morning service. He did, however, come up to me a handful of times to tell me he had to go pee. He didn’t fuss or get scared of the new toilet/environment and we successfully went pee a handful of times. He hated his diaper though and asked for his underwear the moment we got home.

Multiple trips for #1s and another successful #2. He was a little nervous about the poop again but he was so excited and proud of himself afterwards. He did a victory lap around the bathroom and gave multiple high fives to everyone after he washed his hands.

DAY 4 + BEYOND

Much of the same happened from Day 4+, still haven’t had an accident at home. We haven’t had to do many errands or take him out of the house. That’ll be the true test to see how well we’re doing.

My slight germaphobe tendencies are giving me anxiety about public restrooms but I have a plan (and an amazon list). I’ll be posting again with what my purchases are/were and if we had success with them.

We still haven’t put him in underwear overnight or during naps, going to invest in some pee pads to be on the safe side.

Currently, I’m not too sure what to add to the diaper bag other than spare clothes. A question for you potty trained pros: What are some “must haves” when potty training your child?

Happy potty training everyone 🙂


-Bevin

10 Toys That Lasted

Being the first grandchild of the family, Ben was gifted with tons of toys. Some were used, but most were forgotten. Here are the toys that have lasted for Ben.


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  1. Cleo’s Color Book – Ben ate this book up, literally. It was his first book that he was gifted. By the time he was 1 he could recite the book in baby talk. When teething hit, he got his first taste of cardboard from this book. We eventually had to throw it out and buy him a new one. Cute illustrations and simple rhymes that help associate a color with a certain object in the book.
  2. Mega Bloks – When Ben turned 1, he wanted to build. Regular Legos (and even Lego Duplos) were too much for his tiny hands to grasp. Mega Bloks were the key to success. Best of all they were sturdy. So when Ben built the most amazing five block tower he’s ever seen, they didn’t fall down and frustrate him.
  3. Baby Einstein Explore and Discover Soft Blocks – Before crawling and walking, we had a sitting baby. These soft blocks were probably the reason Ben got interested in building. Each cube/block also had a different feature on  each of them. One would vibrate, another had a little mirror, one would crinkle when squeezed and all had different textures placed around the cube. These kept Ben entertained long enough for me to make a sandwich (win!)
  4. Fisher-Price Laugh and Learn Home Playset – When Ben started crawling and walking, this was a HUGE hit. He cautiously would scale the house, pressing all the buttons and do a little jig to the catchy tunes that would play. Every now and then, he still asks for us to take this out so he can kick open the door and sing along to all the tunes he’s familiar with.
  5. Fisher-Price Laugh and Learn Smart Stages Chair – This one is still sitting in our living room. There’s tons of things that this little chair can do. You can set the stage of the chair (there are 3 stages total) and it will have an activity that is age appropriate. Ben’s favorite is the remote that plays music. He also loves the little storage compartment under the seat.
  6. Lego Duplo – Along with Mega Bloks, Ben was gifted tons of Lego Duplos. These aren’t as teeny tiny as regular Lego sets (Lego City is a popular one), there is less of a choking hazard with these. At 2.5, Ben prefers these to his Mega Bloks for some unknown reason. Maybe because they require a little more skill and there’s a few more options in block shape? Either way, he loves these and there are tons of sets you could buy with different Duplo characters and colors.
  7. Dinosaurs – This specific dino set is one Ben enjoys because the dino figures stand up easily. He does have tons of different dino figures and loves them all. I like this set because it came with a little backpack; easy storage after playtime.
  8. Nursery Rhyme Comics – Ben recently got into reading again. This book is his go-to every time he sits on the potty. There are around 50 nursery rhymes in this book, all in comic format. It’s an enjoyable read for my husband and myself too! Ben likes to recite his favorites along with us. The illustrations are gorgeous and it gives everyone’s favorite nursery rhyme new life in the comic format.
  9. / 9.5 Marvel Playskool Figures / Marvel Avenger Titan Hero Figures – I bunched these two together because they’re the same kind of idea and Ben loves them both equally. He likes to take his Playskool figures with us on trips. They’re about 2 inches tall and fit nicely in his pockets or my purse/diaper bag. The Titan series are your average sized action figure (around 8 inches tall). No lights or sounds with these, but they work just fine for Ben’s imagination. These are his go-to toys at the moment and if your kiddo only likes one of the avengers, you can find them pretty easy at Target/Walmart/Toys R’ Us for $10.
  10. Nabi 2S Tablet – We had the Sprout Cubby for sometime, until my dad sat on it and the screen cracked…When we went to Best Buy to get a replacement, they didn’t have any in stock but the Nabi 2S was on sale so we snatched it right up. We try not to let Ben use this too much but it’s nice to have for the times he’s restless. It has Google Play installed so he can play his favorite Toca Boca games or just take pictures of his forehead (poor thing hasn’t mastered the selfie just yet.)

With baby #2 on the way, I’m sure we’ll be reusing a lot of these toys. Maybe one day they’ll be playing with them together. Only time will tell!

What are some toys that lasted more than 5 minutes with your kid(s)?