The Lady Gray

A household chronicle

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Calendula Stick Review

It’s been a while since I’ve done a review on my blog – most of my reviews as of late have been on Instagram! Also, it’s been a good long time since I’ve reviewed anything at all, because life has been CRAZY! Evie is now 2.5 and is bananas, and running after her + going to school = it feels like I’m running around constantly.

So this is about Botanical Therapy’s Calendula Stick Balm. The actual stick is much smaller than I anticipated, which is good, because I doubt I’d be able to go through a giant stick. Here’s a picture of it in my (small) hand:


I was interested in getting this stick for Evie’s mid section. She is almost all the way potty trained, but still uses pull ups and nighttime, and when she’s at school. The top of the diaper seems to rub on her skin a bit, and by nighttime there’s usually some redness/a small rash on her lower back and her sides where the pull up meets. So we usually rub diaper cream along that area, and it’s just a part of my day that I really don’t look forward to. Enter this stick! I can rub it quickly and easily on. She giggles because it tickles. It is not goopy or sticky and there’s no need to rush to the bathroom to wash hands. Plus, I can rub it on a any dry spots that pop up on her or myself! It doesn’t smell of calendula to me. It smells more like a light earl grey mixed with chamomile tea. I’m very into the scent! Calendula is supposed to be great on all sorts of skin ailments, so I’ll be trying it on bug bites of the summer, sun burns, etc.

Here’s a picture of Evie showing off the stick:


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Toddler Motion Sickness?

We were on a short road trip this morning, stuck in traffic, when we heard the sound that every parent dreads. *Cue vomit* Trying to get through 4 lanes of stop and go traffic to pull over with a puking kid is just shudder worthy!

She was fine before and after, so we think that it was that she got car sick. She was sitting rear facing, in stop and go traffic, with the kindle in her lap. I have dealt with motion sickness for as long as I can remember, since probably around Evie’s age. I think that probably all of the various factors contributed and it created the perfect storm for getting sick. We were [luckily] less than 10 minutes from a humongous mall, so we were able to get out, have a little break, and purchase some clean and new clothes. For Jake and Evie, the change was absolutely necessary. For me, it was because I got a pair of pants for 50% off, and you can’t beat that!

For me, I need to sit facing forward, and I do get carsick (or motion sick in general) if I’m in a stop and go situation, and if I’m focusing on something in my lap. Obviously we cannot control the flow of traffic – but that would be a great super power! But we switched her around to forward facing, and we won’t have her with the kindle in the lap. I have a lot of anxiety about switching her from rear facing. One of the reasons why we bought the carseat we bought (the Clek Foonf) was because of the extended rear facing. HOWEVER! I do not want to deal with puking and motion sickness etc. She’s definitely old enough to be forward facing, I just wanted to keep her in rear facing for as long as possible. Oh well! Hopefully she likes to forward face!

Once we got to our friends’ house, we washed our dirty clothes and cleaned our carseat. Tomorrow I’ll be doing a deep clean on the carseat. Anybody have any tips on dealing with motion sickness in toddlers/young children? I’m just so glad we made it almost 2.5 years without having a throw-up incident! I hope we go another 2.5 years!

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On Love Languages

Jake and I are two opposite people. SO DIFFERENT. My therapist and I laughed about this as she was telling me that we often marry people different from us…but not usually quite as different as Jake and I are.  We have super different love languages and it’s taken us a while to figure out how to maneuver this. His love language is acts of service (I’m honestly not quite sure what his secondary one is) and mine are words of affirmation and presents.

So, for his birthday this past weekend I gave him presents that I knew he would like. He likes practical presents, like underwear and socks. Earlier in the week Evie had done some projects for presents for him, and she was very proud to hand them over. Her card was a big piece of paper that she had painted special for him. As she painted she would repeat “making daddy’s birthday” “he’s gonna love it!” Since he doesn’t really care about birthdays or holidays, I knew he wouldn’t put too much stock into it – but I’m an ESFJ and special days are a big deal to me. I am compelled to do these things. For his card from me, I made him a card with my cricut, which I affectionately call my craft robot. Here is where my mind fuck came in. I love words. I’m a words of affirmation person, and I’m just a wordy person in general. Take this blog post – someone else could probably write it and make it half as long.  BUT! I digress. My husband is not a wordy kind of guy. As I was thinking of what to write in his card (something funny? heartfelt? mushy?) I remembered to think of my audience. So I ended up writing two short sentences and signing the card. When I gave it to Jake I told him that I just thought he’d like a shorter card better. He actually smiled when he read it and said “I do, thank you. It’s refreshing.”

YOU GUYS. I’ve been friends with Jake for 10 years and we’ve been together for 8. How am I just now thinking about what HE would like in his card? Sure, I think about the type of gift he wants, the cake he might want, etc etc. But this totally blew my mind. Of course he doesn’t want some long drawn out message from me, he’s not into that! He feels loved when I show him through small acts, like making the coffee the night before or making him a snack when he gets home from work.

[Insert explosion noise here] Mind blown. Give Jake what he would want to receive instead of what I want to receive. DUH. SO SIMPLE. I must be really self absorbed to have never considered this before!

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Baby Lotion Review

Okay! It’s been a while since my last review. I wanted to have the chance to use this product for a few weeks before I did a full review.  This baby lotion is the brand Botanical Therapy. So far, we love this lotion. Because it’s wintertime, we are all suffering from some dry skin. Evie had developed these weird scaly patches on her skin. I decided it was time to start using lotion again, specifically after bath time when her skin would absorb it quickly. Within days of using, the scaly patches were gone. Yay! Here’s what I like about this particular brand as opposed to others I’ve tried:

  • No crazy smells – there’s almost no scent to this lotion. It seems suitable for even super sensitive skin.
  • It’s not greasy or oily
  • It absorbs really quickly, which is great. I use it on my hands and it doesn’t feel like it’s just sitting on top of my skin. I hate that feeling.
  • A little goes a long way
  • This one is superficial, but I like the bottle it comes in!

After trying the lotion, I’m excited to try some of the other products in the line. We will be ordering the shampoo when Evie’s current shampoo runs out. They also have a calendula stick that I’m intrigued by.

Ignore the green face! She had just eaten a green smoothie popsicle 🙂

#babylotion #botanicaltherapy

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Kids Pillow Review

So we added another Milo and Gabby product to our home. We got their kids pillow! We have their toddler pillow already, which I believe is ages 1-2? Their kids pillow is 2+. Since our toddler pillow hangs out at Evie’s preschool all week, I wanted to get her another pillow for her bedroom. The kids pillow is way bigger, and much softer than the toddler pillow. It’s super squishy and cozy, yet still very breathable. I’ve felt grateful to it this past weekend since Evie has had a cold, and being able to make sure her head is propped up for easier breathing has been essential. As with all the Milo and Gabby products, the different sizes of pillows have different designs on the pillow cases. They do have a lot of the same characters, but each size has a unique take on the character. We got Cleo the fox for the pillow case and I die it’s so cute. Next I think we’ll get Lola ballerina. (We have the Lola 3d comforter) As always, I highly recommend the Milo and Gabby products – they feel really high quality and are well made. Plus, the 3d characters give the product a little something special.

Now, on to the cute kid pictures! [The older Evie gets, the harder it is for me to take pictures of her because she always ends up being a BLUR]


#miloandgabby #kidsroom #kidsbedding #kidsbedroom

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Kinderspel Slip-on shoe review!

I bought Evie some shoes, which were meant to be a birthday present…but I got impatient and gave them to her early. The good news: she LOVED them. The bad news: they’re still maybe a half size too big. She can fit into a different pair of size 6 shoes she has, but these are a little wider and seem to run a little bigger. They come in two sizes: M and L (size 6 and 7.5) They definitely seem like they’d work for a wider foot as well, but that’s not a concern for Evie. She’s got a narrow little foot!

The best thing about these shoes is probably all the funky patterns they come in!  I love owls and the owls on the shoes are really fun and colorful (perfect for toddlers!) There are lots of other fun prints like penguins, cheetahs, flowers, etc. They seem incredibly well made, and the canvas feels really sturdy. The bottom is rubber and has a print of bird on the bottom. Evie hasn’t noticed that yet, but I think it’s just darling. I was really surprised by the amount of padding in the sole! It’s almost feels like a foam bottom? Memory foam -esque. These shoes are definitely higher priced, but Evie has slow growing feet and wears her shoes for a really long time. I tend to get her nicer quality shoes that I feel will last. I think she’ll probably be in the shoes by the end of the year, and I’d be surprised if she was out of them by May.

Wearing my socks and her shoes. She loves them!

#kinderspel #slipon #toddlershoes #babyshoes


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Innobaby Snackbox Review

     We LOVE this snack container. I got it because you can never have too many snack containers with a toddler (you have to bring food everywhere!) It has a movable divider, or you could take it out all together to have just one snack inside. However, it’s not a divider that seals at the bottom, so you won’t be able to keep a dip or anything on one side. I love having fruit on one side and crackers on the other.
What surprised me about this container was how perfect it would be for ME, an adult! I go to school and my classes are during dinner time. It’s great for my snacks. It keeps them cool for a long time, and it opens and closes basically silently. Also, the seal on the lid is super strong, so nothing is going to leak into my back pack (or diaper bag.) I’m totally neurotic about my foods touching, so I love this little box.
The size works well for us. I’d actually like to expand our collection of this container, because we only have one, and so I’m washing it all the time!
Side note is that it is only 11 ounces. So, it would work as a lunch container if you removed the divider, but for a big burly man, you might need something a little larger. 😉

#innobaby #bento #keepinsmart

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Toddler Comforter Review

Okay! We’ve had our new toddler blanket for about a week now..and it is love! I’m rapidly becoming obsessed with all Milo and Gabby products. I want them all!

Some of the things I love about the comforter:

  • She will actually use it! [BIGGEST THING I LOVE] I’m guessing it has to do with her blanket being a bunny character instead of just being a normal blanket? So there’s an increased chance of her actually keeping the blanket on with this particular comforter. WIN!
  • It’s really lightweight but still warm. E is cutting a tooth right now so there have been many nights where I’ve crawled into bed with her to comfort her, and we share the blanket. I can personally vouch for the warmth of this thing.
  • It’s also really breathable, which is important for a blanket on a small child’s bed.
  • The size. I was unsure of the size when ordering. I felt pretty concerned that it might be really small and not something that would grow with her. Immediately upon opening it, I realized my fears were unfounded! It’s a great size. She’ll be able to use this comforter for many years before becoming too tall for it.
  • The 3d features. This bunny has ears and a tail that are 3d, which I think is REALLY fun. There are also 4 paws, which have paw prints on the bottom.
  • The top of the comforter is a solid color, and the underside is a print. Included on the print are outlines of some of the other Milo and Gabby critters. I love that!
  • There’s a little lovey attached to one of the feet. It’s soft and squishy. 🙂

The quality on this thing definitely checks out. Lola Bunny has been getting a lot of love, and I don’t think she’s going to be showing any signs or wear or tear anytime soon. Absolutely perfect for a rambunctious toddler.

There are two other characters available in the 3d comforter. One is a tiger and one is a dinosaur. I was REALLY torn between the bunny and the dino. Ultimately, Evie is more into bunnies than she is into dinosaurs, which was the deciding factor for me.  I’m thinking next character we add to our home zoo is going to be a dinosaur. 😉

#toddlerblanket #miloandgabby #toddlercomforter

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Toddler Pillow Review


I’ve been wanting to get Evie her own pillow for a while now. She loves ours in the big bed, and she is going to need one for her preschool this Fall. There’s tons of different toddler pillows out there and it was a little overwhelming. I ended up choosing a Milo & Gabby Toddler Pillow [mostly because of the ADORABLE pillow cases they make.]

Things I love about the pillow: It’s very breathable. Evie definitely is a belly sleeper, so the idea of a pillow felt a little bit scary. I stuck my face all up in it and could breathe just fine. It’s got a Tencel pillow case that it comes with, which is very soft and also environmentally friendly. Apparently Tencel is also naturally anti-bacterial which is pretty cool, considering that toddlers are basically tiny germ monsters.  My favorite thing about it is probably the size. It’s the perfect size for little toddler hands and arms, and squishy to boot.

Moving on to purely aesthetic reasons, Milo and Gabby makes the CUTEST pillow cases in the world. They have a little zoo of animals to choose from.  I was really torn between the Koala (Olive Koala), the dinosaur (Dylan Dinosaur) and the squirrel (Lucy Squirrel). I ended up choosing Lucy because I loved the color and her tail is adorable. In the future I’ll probably get a couple of different animal pillow cases to swap out when one is in the wash.

Evie loves Lucy and keeps telling me “new pillow! new pillow. new pillow!” I think having Lucy with her at preschool might make nap time there feel a little less foreign. Of course, there might be a problem with all the other kids wanting Lucy too!


Edit: I forgot to mention that there’s different sizes of pillows that go along with different age ranges. So they have baby, toddler, and kid pillows. Having a fairly petite toddler, the toddler size will work well for her for a long time. The characters for the pillow cases are available in all the different sizes.

#miloandgabby #loveib # kidspillow #toddlerpillow

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Someone is almost 2!

Evie is almost 2. I think we are now at a point where I’ll stop using months in her age. People would ask how old and I’d say 14 months, 17 months, etc. Now she’s almost two. At Christmas time she’ll be a little over 2. No need to bother with months anymore, because it’s less of a difference than before. Up until about a year and a half, a month makes a huge difference developmentally. Even now it still does, but after a year and a half, no one really cares how many months your kids is, because then they have to start doing math.

I went through a very difficult stage with her recently (I don’t say we here, because I’m the primary caretaker and Evie tends to behave better for everyone else in the world than she does for me, and that includes her dada.)  It was such a confusing time for me, because so many people just “LOVE” the 18-24 month age. I’ve been hearing people say “it’s such a fun age!” when all it seemed to be for me was a lot of stress in my chest. Luckily, it was only about 2 months of hard, and now it’s pretty great again. It was basically her testing my boundaries ALL DAY EVERY DAY. Lots of whining. Lots of hitting and biting and being mean to the dog and not wanting to get off of me. There would be moments of intense cuteness (I’m guessing it’s similar to why babies are cute – so you don’t just chuck them out…just kidding, obviously I would never do that). I’m really glad that it’s fun again, because when you are just trying to make it through the day every day, life feels pretty bleak.

Right now it’s a lot of mimicking behaviors and a lot of language growth. A lot of cheering because pee-pee on the potty happened, and also a lot of cleaning up baby pee, because pee-pee on the potty DIDN’T happen. I weaned her for the first time at 17 months, then she picked it back up again a few weeks later. We weaned again and it seemed to stick, except she still hadn’t forgotten. She got ahold of a naked booby a week or two ago (mine) and has obsessively been trying to nurse since. I don’t want to perpetually be giving her mixed signals, but it’s so hard when she just won’t quit. She’s taken to literally trying to pull my breast out of my shirt, or going underneath the shirt to try to get it. I’d like to be done, but she seems very intent on not being done.

We are currently doing the library’s summer reading program, where you get prizes for reading a certain amount. I have to say, I thought it would be easier. I honestly thought we were reading books for about 30 minutes a night…it turns out it’s about 10 minutes a night. So if you want time to slow down, just read to your children. Time goes by like molasses.