A Travel Bag For Kids & Adults – Itzy Ritzy


As we are all approaching a big travel week/weekend, I thought I’d share one of my favorite travel bags – the Itzy Ritzy Snack Happens Everything Bag. Yes, they are created for kids, but I use them just as much as B does and we both love them. We have two of the “snack and everything” sized bags (7″x7″), both of which I got at different mom/mom-to-be events. Itzy Ritzy has a wide variety of material choices so you’re not stuck with a “baby” or gender specific look.  And yes, I use them for snacks for B (he actually calls them the snack bags) but I also use them for:

  • Carrying pacifiers when we travel (hoping to not use them for this anymore since I’m breaking B of the nightly pacifier habit soon)
  • Crayons
  • Toys with multiple pieces (Legos, small cars, blocks, etc.)
  • Puzzle pieces when we travel
  • Make up
  • Jewelry when traveling
  • Coupons when running multiple errands (I have a coupon organizer but this is more for the Macy’s/BB&B/Target coupons that I need for special trips)
  • Wet wipes from the big container when I am out of the travel size
  • Cell phone holder in the beach bag to keep sand and water away from my phone

And I’m sure I use them other ways, too, but these are the ones that immediately come to mind. The bags are great because they are lined with a PVC free waterproof material and they just go in the washing machine (or in a sink with soapy water) to clean. I have seen them at various baby stores but you can find even cooler material choices by going to the website HERE.

Itzy Ritzy makes a lot of other kid tote products, too. And, they are from the Chicago area (Naperville) so I like that I’m supporting a (sort of) local business.

Thanks for reading Bright-Yellow.

I’d love to hear if you have tried the Itzy Ritzy bags or have other travel pouch suggestions – leave a comment or two!


Fresh & Clean Some of My Favorite Chemical-Free Cleaning Products

Sometimes I use a product, visit a place, eat or drink something new and think to myself, “I should blog about this.” Then I never actually write that blog post. Well, today as I was cleaning (you know, since I don’t have a paying job at the moment), I had one of those “I should blog about this” thoughts and viola – a blog post!

laundry_DAFS_fresh_airI love Method products. I have loved them for a long time (I first tried their bathroom cleaner when I had a windowless bathroom), I have not met one that I don’t love, and I sing their praises often. One of my new favorites is the Method Laundry Spray. Originally I tried this because I had a coupon (see reference to lack of paying job above) for a free trial size when I bought another Method Laundry product. I loved the idea of replacing dryer sheets (and the trash they generate) with a spray but I honestly was a bit skeptical. My skepticism was unfounded, though, because the spray rocks. It smells heavenly, leaves our clothes nice and soft, and really reduces the static. Plus, since I can control how much I use, I can adjust the amount based on the size of the load of laundry. I think the directions say six sprays for a load of laundry but, personally, I use about half of that with great success.

CFS-010_1zNow that I have professed my love of Method, I have to admit that I cheated on them and tried Naturally It’s Clean Bathroom Cleaner and I actually love it more than the Method bathroom cleaner. The Method one was great but the Naturally It’s Clean Bathroom Cleaner does a better job. For the last two years we have had a layer of gunk on the counter in B’s bathroom (hmmm… could it be my hairspray since that is where I do my hair? Yeah, probably) and nothing got rid of it. I just figured we’d live with it until we re-do the bathroom someday. Ahhh but then I tried Naturally It’s Clean and the gunk is gone. Really. Since I try to limit B’s interaction with chemicals, I really love using this in his bathtub because I know his tub is squeaky clean but nothing I used is going to make his sprout a third ear or anything.

Don’t ask about floor cleaner, though – at the rate the snow is falling around here, I’m not cleaning my floors until July!

Please share any cleaning products or tips that you have in the comments section!

Thanks for reading Bright-Yellow.

To App or Not To App

This is a post where I hope you will offer a little feedback in the comments area.


To App or Not to App? Well, actually – To Let Baby B App or Not to App?

B has discovered the joy of the iPhone and iPad. Since I often have my phone with me (we are a cell phone only house), he was bound to notice it at some point. Once he discovered it, he was content to simply turn it on. Then he was content to just look at pictures with mom’s help and now he can swipe all on his own. He has also figured out how to access Siri (which Jeff and I find hilarious since he doesn’t talk leading to an “I don’t understand da da da” response from Siri). He figured out that the iPad was just a bigger iPhone when he noticed that the wall paper on both is the same picture of him.

I have downloaded a few apps for him (a phone pad that has characters that say things like “Hi” and “Peek a Boo” and one that plays the ABC song while the letters float down in bubbles). I did this prior to a long car trip figuring I’d only pull the phone out when desperate – which happened all to frequently.

So, the question is, do we let him embrace technology and seek appropriate apps for him and let him play on these devices or try to keep them from him a little longer? On the one hand, I want him to wait and live in a tech-free world for a while longer. On the other hand, he is growing up in a technology world.  Ah… first world problems, right? 🙂

Okay folks – let me know – do we app or not app?

Thanks for reading Bright-Yellow.

Nosefrida – One of Things I Never Knew Existed Before I Had a Baby

Well Baby P is now just over five months old and I feel like I’m just starting to get the hang of this mommy gig. I’m certainly not a pro and I’m definitely learning something new every day, but I’m not as overwhelmed as I was at the beginning and I don’t find myself questioning my every move with the baby. Of course, tomorrow he’s bound to throw me for a loop and my new-found mommy confidence will be out the door!

Prior to Baby P’s birth, my friend, Becky, told me about Nosefrida. She has a daughter about six months older than Baby P and she gave me lots of great tips while I was pregnant. When she explained how Nosefrida worked (more on that in a moment), I both gagged and laughed and said no way. Well, because of Chicago’s crazy weather this year (I’m noting, not complaining), Baby P has been dealing with a stuffy nose for most of his little life. After quickly realizing that the aspirator is a waste of time, I finally relented and pulled out Nosefrida – and Baby P is glad I did.

How does it work? In short, you suck the snot out of your baby’s nose (see why I was both gagging and laughing?!?!). In long, Nosefrida is a tube with one end that you put in your baby’s nostril and the other end you put in your mouth (there is a filter to keep the parent from actually sucking in the snot). Go ahead and gag and laugh NOW. But, you’ll thank me when your kid has a stuffy nose and you look at that aspirator and want to chuck it across the room because it does not work. Nosefrida works. It works great and Baby P can tell you that he greatly appreciates it.

I have also quickly learned that this is not the grossest thing I will do to help my child. That is all I will say about that.

I hope to have a non-mom post soon. Right now, this is where my life is. At some point, I’ll add grown up activities back to the mix!

Until then, thanks for reading Bright-Yellow.

Popping and Pop-Tarts

Yes, I know, Bright-Yellow seems to have been on a bit of a hiatus. Those who know me in person know that there is a reason… baby Bright-Yellow is on his way (yep, it’s a boy) in October and my mind has been pretty occupied with trying to learn about the big changes in store for us! This, combined with my inability to drink, eat large portions of food, and sleep, has made me kind of boring and not full of “you must check this out” items (unless you count my new constant reading of “Baby Bargains”).

My few pregnancy cravings have included grapefruit, potatoes, and… Pop Tarts! The Pop Tarts craving, though, was more a result of the power of suggestion after my friend, Deb, told me that she ate the best thing ever – a home-made Pop Tart! From there, it has been Pop Tarts on the brain almost every day.  I have only indulged in the store-bought version once (thanks to the office vending machine). Then, a few weeks ago, when we visited our friends James and Jeanne in Washington, DC,  I got to taste the version that Deb had and now nothing else will do!

These fabulous creations come from a small bakery/restaurant called Ted’s Bulletin in the Capitol Hill area of DC. They are A-MAZING! I stuck to classic strawberry but husband Jeff (and friend James) also enjoyed the peanut butter and bacon version. These pop tarts are not overly sweet like the store-bought kind and the pastry part melts in your mouth and tastes kind of like yellow cake. Truly fantastic!

Deb came across a recipe from Smitten Kitchen for making pop tarts.  Neither of us have tried making them yet and, honestly, Deb is a better baker so I’m waiting for her to try the recipe. Hurry up Deb! 🙂

Has anyone else made pop tarts? What about other home-made version of classic store-bought products?

Thanks Capitol Spice for letting me use your photo of the awesome Ted’s Bulletin pop-tarts and thanks to you for reading Bright-Yellow!