On Saturday we went to the Baked Bear, which was on my summer bucket list, and it was a fun and yummy trip! For those who live in the Montgomery County area in Maryland, this one is located in Rockville/Bethesda on Rose Ave. The whole center where it’s located is really nice, and new- ish, if I’m not mistaking. The Baked Bear is a custom ice cream sandwich shop, and I looooove ice cream sandwiches lol I didn’t go crazy because I shared mine with Gio, but next time I go I’m definitely going all out!! That child eats anything sweet, so I don’t really know why I shied away from yummy options.
My order was a sprinkle cookie, a m&m cookie, vanilla ice cream, and sprinkles! I’m not huge on sprinkles but I felt like I had to get them lol I forgot to ask to get the cookies warmed up which I’m really upset about because that would have made my sandwich 100x more delicious!
I get overwhelmed sometimes ordering food but this was like a Chipotle type of setup so seeing everything laid out was nice .
Everything in the shop is freshly made and homemade, and you can definitely tell! The shop isn’t big, but there really isn’t a need for it to be. There’s a “beach” (really just a decent size sand area) right outside and tons of seating! Plus, with this summer weather, it’s perfect to have your ice cream outdoors!
Below I’ll insert and image of their site where they shared images of what people have gotten, and you’ll see what I mean about crazy and creative! This is definitely a fun stop to make in the summer. Even if it’s just once! My total was $6.30 which wasn’t too bad- I really thought I’d spend a minimum of $10. Of course the more you add to your ice cream, the more expensive.
If you have one near by, definitely try and make the trip! You won’t regret it! Thanks for reading! -Aura xoxo
Today Gio and I went to a Block Party in the plaza by Erwin’s job. It wasn’t anything huge, but it was so much fun!
They had a Bingo game- you’d get your bingo cards and go to the different merchants on your card and get a stamp. Then once it’s all filled up, you’d go back to the Bingo table and spin a wheel for a prize. I regret not doing it, lol.
There was also a moon bounce, an arts and craft table, and best of all, train rides! Gio LOVES trains so when he saw the train going around the parking lot he was ecstatic. We went on it about three times. We probably could have gone on more times, but we wanted to make sure that all the other kids got to go on too.
After our last ride we walked around the plaza stopping by different merchants. We went to Hallmarks table, which is where Gio got his Dory and Nemo clippers. He’s obsessed with them. He was so happy and wouldn’t stop saying thank you after I paid (they were $1!!). We walked by other stores where he collected lollipops, tattoos, and got a cupcake and popcorn.
It was a great way to spend the afternoon. The best part? Everything was FREE, unless you decided to purchase some items from the stores. I’m always in the hunt for different events in the area or areas near by. At the start of every month I search my Facebook or type in my county’s name and family events in the Google search bar. I almost always find something for each month, and right now that it’s summer there’s so much going on!
So every year I always want to do a lot of different things during different seasons, but I don’t always get to it all or half, lol. But now I want to start writing them all down and sharing them with you guys, and hopefully that motivates me to do more things and adventure out some more. Gio is also now 2 which makes it easier to go out on different adventures too. I’ve lived in Maryland for almost 3 years now, right in-between Baltimore and D.C. and many other places, and haven’t explored as much as I should soooo here we go!
Go to museums. The main ones I’d like to go to are: National Air and Space Museum, National Museum of Natural History, and National Museum of American History
Go to the zoo: Smithsonian National Zoo isn’t too far from us, and it would be a fun adventure especially for Gio since it’ll be his first time seeing all kinds of animals
Go to a water park: not exactly sure which, but we have found some in NJ, PA, and VA that have grabbed our attention
Go to the carnival: in the area there’s always 2 during the summer. There’s one right now and there will be a much bigger one in mid-August if I’m not mistaken
Go to the lantern festival! Yessss, please
Go on picnics
Of course, beach days!
Lots of pool time!
Go to Scramble: it’s a pretty big indoor play area for children in VA and looks like so much fun!
Go to the sunflower field:
Make a photo journal: I want to try and make one for each season. We haven’t been ones to take too many pictures and I’m kind of regretful of that because I would love to have pictures of our memories and put albums together that we can look back on
Go on a hike: I definitely need tips and tricks for going on a hike with kids!
*disclaimer: I am not a doctor or a professional in this department. I messaged Gio’s doctor to make sure the items I give him, and what I do, are ok.
This past season Gio was sick twice. Luckily, Gio seems to have a pretty strong immune system for his age ( I will go into detail as to why I believe he does at the end of the article), but I always like to be really prepared.
The last two times he was sick he had a cough and lots of mucus. He was also in and out of a mild fever. Below is what I used/did, and why, while he was sick:
Zarbee’s Naturals Children’s Cough Syrup + Mucus w/ Dark Honey
First and foremost, I love this brand. I use to use others, but Zarbee’s seems to work best for Gio, and I strongly believe it’s because of all the natural and wholesome ingredients. The more natural the better in my opinion.
It’s safe for children 12 months+
Contains vitamin C and zinc to help support their immune system
The main ingredient, dark honey, helps coat the throat to calm the cough
The only things you can consider cons are:
It doesn’t necessarily have the best taste.
It’s very, very sticky and can get messy if you’re not careful. I give it to Gio with a syringe which you can purchase at Walmart, Target, Babies R. Us, etc.
Contains the same ingredients as the one above, except this one also consists of melatonin. Melatonin helps promote a good nights sleep in children which is important while sick since at night is when a cough can get worse. Melatonin is drug-free- it is something our pineal glands produce naturally. It isn’t essential for our sleep but we do sleep better once it’s secreted. I ONLY give what’s on the label or instructed by my pediatrician (as with any medicine) and immediately stop giving it once Gio is well or I feel he no longer needs the nighttime medicine.
What do I do if Gio has a fever?
Most fevers are caused by an infection or illness (other reasons: immunizations and teething). A fever is the body’s natural response to fighting an infection. The higher temperature in the child’s body produces an increased amount of antibodies. It is the most effective way to fight infection. So I don’t give Gio anything immediately to decrease his temperature, especially if he is still calm and playful.
I make sure Gio gets lots of rest, so usually we’ll be indoors
Lots of fluids! Water, milk, and/or teas to make sure he doesn’t get dehydrated (I do this even with no signs of a fever. It’s important that with any illness for them to be well hydrated, especially if they don’t want to eat much)
Now, if Gio is very irritable and it seems like he might have a headache or a body ache I will give him Tylenol to help control his pain, but I try to refrain from that
Here is what I’ve learned about fevers and when to go to the doctor from the American Academy of Pediatrics:
Under 3 months: 100.4°F or more
3 to 6 months: 101°F or more
Over 6 months 103°F or more
The American Academy of Pediatrics, Parenting.com, and BraunHealthcare.come are helpful places to look for help as well.
Vicks helps relieve a cough and helps open airways for all the mucus to come out
Different ways I use Vicks:
Rub it on chest, back, and soles of feet
Boil it: get a small pot filled 3/4 of way with water, then put a spoonful of Vicks inside
In a humidifier- here are the two that we own:
Steam, warm baths
These help open up the airways and while in the bath a lot of mucus comes out
Helps soothe and relax their tense bodies
Why I believe Gio has a strong immune system:
I breastfed Gio for almost 9 months. I wanted to reach the year mark but unfortunately I wasn’t able to. Breastfeeding is known to be crucial for helping babies develop a strong immune system. The breastmilk helps supply the necessary factors to protect against disease, and supplies the necessary nutrients a baby needs which is also keen in having a strong immune system. This is known as a naturally acquired passive immunity. (I know that not everyone can or does breastfeed, which is perfectly ok, so listed are more ways to help with a strong immune system!)
Nutrition + Nutritional Supplements! Helping kids have a healthy diet is very important. Meaning lots of fruits, veggies, healthy fats, proteins, etc. I started introducing foods to Gio at 4 months (yes, I know it’s said to start at 6 months, but Gio did very well) and was a very, very good eater. Right now Gio has phases when he doesn’t want to eat much so to fill in those gaps while he’s going through a stage I give him smoothies with a variety of fruits and veggies, and everyday I give him a liquid multi-vitamin.
I tend to avoid giving Gio antibiotics unless that’s the only thing that will help improve whatever it is he may have. (He took an antibiotic once only) As you’ve probably noticed, I tend to avoid the doctor’s office unless it becomes truly necessary to go.
Lots of exercise! Let them run around, do a sport, join a class that gets them going, go to the park… do anything that gets them up and at it! Gio is very physically active. If he doesn’t get at least an hour a day of just running around, playing, or even going for a walk, he does get irritable- theres a clear change in his behavior when he does or doesn’t get that time. Negative energy and behavior isn’t good for their emotional or mental health which can effect your immunity. Plus, physical activity helps increase the number of killer cells in our bodies
Once again, I am no professional. This is just stuff I’ve acquired throughout my time of being the oldest of all my cousins and being a mom, plus messaging my doctor when I need an extra hand. Also, growing in my Hispanic household has taught me a lot of things.