How To Pick Up Moms: A Practical Guide To Making Mom Friends

hands of two women holding white mugs filled with coffee. presumably on a coffee date. title of the blog is how to pick up moms: a practical guide to making mom friends for lilhelper.ca by Jessica Potts

Hey y’all! It’s Jess! I am back and loaded with lots of info for all of you!

Let’s talk friends. Specifically, let’s talk MOM friends.

Wilma from the Flintstones putting her finger into a baby bassinet and getting bitten. Betty laughing. For lilhelper.ca blog post by Jessica Potts

I have always had lots of friends. I could make friends sitting at the airport. In fact, that IS how I made one of my best friends.

I had NO idea what making MOM friends would be like. I just assumed they would all hear I had a baby and come line up at my door with muffins and play date invitations. That happens right?

image of woman in a white top holding up muffins for lilhelper.ca blog post. "Why, when, where, and how to make mom friends." by Jessica Potts.

Turns out, making mom friends is not always simple.

Don’t worry though mama. There are TONS of mom’s just like you waiting to be asked out on a playdate.

Let’s get down to the details-

First, WHY do you even need friends?

When you become a mom, you get completely lost in your own world with this new tiny human you have been entrusted to keep safe and alive. This can happen whether it is your first or your fifth baby! Check out Erin’s Self Care for Parents blog for more info on possible ways to care for yourself.

exhausted mom rocking her baby through the day and night for lilhelper.ca blog post by Jessica Potts

Us moms get so caught up with all the new baby things that we are lucky to just be able to feed ourselves so making mom friends isn’t always at the top of the list. Should that stop you? Heck no.

In fact, TONS of studies have shown how important friendships are for a mother’s mental health. A UCLA research team has found that women (not just mothers) don’t simply opt for the normal “fight or flight” response but instead, women lean heavily on social support from friends. Read the study here. Social media is great for keeping long-distance relationships alive but it is no substitute for spending time together in person. Anyone who has moved away from family and friends can attest to this fact.

gif of women from sex and the city laughing together while walking down the streets for blog.lilhelper.ca post. Blog post "The why, when, where, and how of making mom friends" by Jessica Potts.

Also, let’s be real for a minute here, other moms just GET IT.

Have you got a mystery (possible poop/vomit) stain on your shirt? No problem! I probably have one too! This is why I only wear black now.  

Ron Swanson holding a lite bright with the word 'poop' written on it for lilhelper.ca blog post by Jessica Potts

You running super late to your 9:00am playdate because your baby decided to have a blow out the MINUTE you walked out the door? No worries! My kid vomited on herself and me and my front door so I am also running late!

the white rabbit from Alice in wonderland looking at a clock and exclaiming 'I'm late!

Your house looks like a tornado hit it in the middle of the night? Same, girl! My babe is currently teething and only allows me to set her down for 30 seconds at a time! Not much time for cleaning.

image of messy house with laundry on the couch, laundry basket on the floor and boxes on the floor for blog.lilhelper.ca post. Blog post "The why, when, where, and how of making mom friends" by Jessica Potts.

Poop stories? Share them! I can’t wait to hear them! WE GET IT!

Now, you know WHY you need friends but WHERE and WHEN do you make these mythical mom friends?

This is easy.

ANYWHERE YOU GO!

Moms are everywhere: parks, grocery stores, doctor’s appointments, walking around the block, and so on and so forth.

If you see a mom you think you might like, ask her on a play date or for coffee? You might be the mom friend she has been waiting for.  

Shaq doing the shimmy for lilhelper.ca blog post by Jessica Potts

We know the WHY, WHERE, and the WHEN but HOW do you make a mom friend?

This is a little harder. It might require you to step out of your comfort zone but you can do it, mama! I believe in you!

First thing is first, you want to spot the possible mom friend.

Once you have spotted the mom you think you could be friends with (maybe her baby is the same age as your baby? Or maybe she just has awesome dance moves?) Either way, it’s working for you and you’re on your way to making a mom friend.

gif of mom dancing and hitting her child with her butt accidentally for blog.lilhelper.ca post. Blog post "The why, when, where, and how of making mom friends" by Jessica Potts.

Second, walk towards said mom.

This is hard. I know. It is so easy to get caught up in the daydream of the beautiful friendship that could be and all the coffee dates you’re going to be having and laughs you will share. Snap out of it mama and get to walking!

two African American women laughing together while eating for lilhelper.ca blog post by Jessica Potts

Third, smile and comment (this can be a “pick-up line”).

My favorite mom pick-up line right now is a simple one: “Your baby is soooo cute!!! How old is he/she?” Every mom thinks their baby is the most adorable baby ever (because they are!) but it’s always nice to hear it from someone else.

image of baby smiling and posing with hands under chin for blog.lilhelper.ca post. Blog post "The why, when, where, and how of making mom friends" by Jessica Potts.

Fourth, ask the dreaded question.

THIS IS YOUR TIME! Ask that mama, “would you like to set up a playdate?”

If you’re a bit shy, start slow and ask for her number.

I find it is easiest for me to GIVE my number rather than ask for it but then you are risking not getting a call or the possible mom friend forgetting.

image of two women talking and one woman holding a baby for blog.lilhelper.ca post. Blog post "The why, when, where, and how of making mom friends" by Jessica Potts.

Personally, I would say something along the lines of “we should get them (the babies) together for a playdate. (Hopefully,  possible mom friend is shaking her head in agreement or smiling so you can continue) Let me give you my number and you can let me know when is best for you!”

Last but not least, ENJOY your new mom friend!

YOU DID IT! Dive on in and enjoy having another adult to communicate with! Well done, mama! gif of mom from "mean girls" saying "i'm a cool mom" for blog.lilhelper.ca post. Blog post "The why, when, where, and how of making mom friends" by Jessica Potts.

What are some of your favorite places to make friends? Any “pick up lines” that have worked for you?

Top 5 Actual Summer Baby Essentials

 

top 5 actual summer baby essentials. picture of baby sitting in a waterpark while wearing a pineapple swim diaper.

Hello everyone! My name is Ariel and I am super excited to be here with you today!

Like a lot of you super parents out there reading this blog (yes, I’m looking at you!), this is my first summer experiencing all that the world has to offer for my 7-month old daughter, Dawson.

With everything available out on the market for our little ones, and every brand promoting their products as a ‘must have’, it can be extremely overwhelming to decide what our children actually need!

In this post, I have compiled a list of the top 5 actual baby essentials that you will want to make sure you pick up for your little one this summer!

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5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children

image of large trees with rocks below them and a clear blue stream running down the middle for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

How to be more Environmentally Friendly with Children by Jessica Potts

I took my daughter to the zoo this weekend and saw a quote that stopped me in my tracks. It read, “by the year 2045, the last rainforest tree will be cut if we continue at this pace.”

image of rainforest and trees that have been cut in front of the rainforest for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

I couldn’t help but think – “my daughter will only be 28.”

With that awful feeling in my heart, I started giving some thought to all the baby products that are disposable or single-use plastic. In an effort to create a better world for myself and my daughter, I have come up with some ways that we can be environmentally friendly with little ones in tow.

image of pink tree from Dr. Seuss book "The Lorax" with words "Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. It's not." for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

1. Cloth Wipes

This is an obvious one for all Lil Helper lovers! Cloth Diapers are already saving the world one cute fluff butt at a time but one can easily expand into Lil Helper cloth wipes while using disposables too.

Cloth wipes lead to less waste and are better for the environment because they can be washed and reused. They are efficient and more gentle on skin as they help avoid irritating soaps and chemicals on your baby’s bottom that are found in most disposable wipes. When your children are potty trained, they can also easily become rags for cleaning.

gif of stephen colbert spraying cleaning spray from his desk for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" written by Jessica Potts

2. Baby Led Weaning

Traditional Weaning, or ‘TW’, is the process of adding solids to an infant’s diet.TW is a common developmental stage that calls for solids to be added slowly, beginning with purees, then mash, then mash/purees with lumps and continuing until Baby is ready for solid foods. This process is often supported by the use of store-bought baby foods in single-use containers made of glass or plastic.

gif of baby being fed green puree for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

This form of weaning produces a lot of waste, as those little containers are anything but environmentally friendly!

image of green, orange, yellow, and purple baby purees in glass jars with spoons on top of them for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

Still, if you do choose to use pre-made baby foods, the containers can be upcycled in many ways like using them to store art supplies. They make excellent glitter containers!

gif of man with mustache throwing glitter up for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" written by Jessica Potts

A more environmentally friendly way to wean your baby is called Baby Led Weaning, or “BLW”. This method teaches children to feed themselves from the very beginning by encouraging them to join family meals and explore the foods. In other words, baby eats what you eat. Babies eat small portions of your food to experiment with texture and taste. This way of feeding allows children to learn with their food while working on their fine-motor skills! No special foods mean no wasteful containers 🙂

gif of kung fu panda eating a vegetable inside of a garbage bin for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

Precautions must be taken with this process, as with any other form of weaning as babies can gag and choke while they learn to eat. BLW can be very messy during meal times but you can use one of your trusty Lil Helper cloth wipes or one of the new Lil Helper Biggie Bibs for the mess. If you’d like to learn more about BLW, check out this link. Feeding your baby CAN be environmentally friendly!

3. Wood Toys

That’s right, toys can be environmentally friendly too!

Wood toys have longer lives. They may be a bit more pricey to start with (kind of like cloth diapers) but they are 100% worth it. Wooden toys do not come with sounds, lights, or specific instructions so children must find a way to interact with them while using their imagination!These toys can be passed on to other generations. They make excellent gifts and they are more environmentally friendly than its plastic counterpart. 

gif of wooden blocks forming a castle with a paper airplane flying above for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" written by Jessica Potts

In 2014, Americans generated about 33 million tons of plastic. The year before, only 9.5 percent of plastics were recycled, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Why is this a problem? Most plastic toys are going straight to landfills. Very few of these toys can be recycled and many of them are not built to withstand use by more than one child. Which leads to buying more plastic toys and more in the landfills!

image of blue garbage truck in a landfill with garbage all around for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly" by Jessica Potts

My husband has a wooden truck that he was given when he was a child.  It is still in perfect condition still and he plans to clean it up and give to our daughter when she is old enough!

My hope is that she treasures it. Kids are not exactly the “treasuring” kind so I fully expect the truck to be thrown around. The good news is wood toys hold up really well to strong babies!

4. Buy gender neutral

What does that mean? Gender neutral is items that can be used for boys and girls. I know it’s easy to get excited about all the pink things or the sports motifs but you can still indulge!

gif of white cat fluffing her fur while wearing a pink bow around her neck for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

Back in the 1700s, men and women wore pink. It wasn’t until after WW2 that pink became a “girly” color. Let’s all agree that boys can wear pink, too! Don’t believe me? Watch Mohammed tell you it’s okay here.

Buying gender neutral does not have to be extreme. You can start small, by buying items that don’t get used as frequently, such as rain boots, baby shoes, coats, jackets. By buying gender neutral, you can pass them on to other kids (your own or a friend’s! 🙂 )

It is much more environmentally friendly to buy items you can pass on to other children since it reduces a lot of clothing waste. Newborn clothing is especially damaging as it’s normally used only a few times before Baby outgrows it. When buying for a new mom, it is always a good idea to skip newborn clothes altogether and head straight for 0-3mos sizes.

image of white baby clothes laid flat that includes a sleeper, onesies, hat, and a bear for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

New babes don’t need much and grow crazy fast! This is one of the reasons Lil Helper does not make “newborn” diapers. It would be contributing to the never-ending waste of newborn items. Plus, there are plenty of fit tips and ‘hacks’ on Lil Helper’s youtube channel showing how to fit your Lil Helper diapers on your newborn from as small as 7lbs!

5. Buy Second Hand

I will admit, I struggle with this.

I always think to myself “but what if they didn’t take care of it or wash it the way I would?”

image of a second hand shop with various items hanging and on the walls for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

It is very easy to make excuses. However, many gently used clothes have so much life left in them that you could use them for many, many kids.

Buying second-hand clothing is a great way to reduce waste. There are literally TONS of cute, barely-used clothes that just get thrown away!

gif of marge simpson showing a patterned shirt and saying "ooh this one is 50% off" for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

Plus, let’s be honest, children fly through clothes, so your sweet babe will probably wear it for only a few weeks before it’s time for something new. 

Thanks to the internet, you can now shop second hand from your phone or computer! Facebook has countless buy/sell/trade groups for all kinds of items, including Lil Helpers!

Apps such as Mercari, Poshmark, and thredUP are just a few that have brought second-hand shopping to the mainstream. They are making it easy and convenient to be environmentally friendly in 2018!

We have a whole blog post about how buying secondhand can help save the planet and how the concept of “fast fashion” is dangerous. Read it here!

image of poshmark clothing app showing different items that are for sale including shoes and a jacket for Lil Helper blog post "5 ways to be environmentally friendly with children" by Jessica Potts

These are just a few of the many ways you can make the move toward being more environmentally friendly with your little ones!

For another quick way you can make a small but meaningful change check out the Plastic Pollution Coalition here.

Do you have any environmentally friendly tips you use with your kiddos? How do you teach your babes to be more aware of the environment and treat it with love?

Are Lil Helpers Long Lasting Cloth Diapers

Are Lil Helpers Long Lasting Cloth Diapers blog header image. Background shows a toddler wearing a lil helper cloth diaper holding on to a stuffed bear who is also wearing a lil helper cloth diaper. Hi, my name is Cherie and I have been using Lil Helper diapers for over four years. I love them so much and they just released some amazing new prints! Since I love new prints I had to see if I could justify buying more diapers but, because Lil Helper diapers are amazingly long-lasting cloth diapers, I don’t really need more.

After cloth diapering my youngest and middle girl, it’s safe to say that my diapers have seen it all.

Long Lasting Cloth Diapers
My first diaper on the left and my newest on the right.

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