There's been a lot of trial and error around here in the two months since Gotcha day, and along the way we've discovered some products that are just wonderful. So, with a nod to Oprah's similarly-themed monthly magazine feature, we present Stuff We (and Wynn!) Love:
1. California Baby Shampoo - It takes care of Wynn's dry scalp issues and smells so delicious that I want to use it too. $8.99 a bottle at Target and worth every penny.
2. Honey Maid Graham Crackers - Apparently, they don't have to be shaped like zoo animals or teddy bears for kids to love them. Wynn feeds the other kinds of crackers to the dog, but she eats these square wonders hiding behind an end table to protect her stash from Ranger. I think of them as the Chanel suit of snack crackers: tasteful and simple with clean lines. A classic.
3. Dole Mandarin Oranges - Wynn is incredibly picky about fruit; she has rejected many a melon for not being up to her southern-China (where fresh fruit is abundant all year) tastes. She LOVES this fruit. It comes in big, clear plastic jars and seems to be on sale every other week. She's getting her vitamins, and we're not standing at the cutting board chopping up something we hope she'll approve of.
4. Goofy Spoons - We got these fantastic bent-handled toddler spoons as a gift. Of course, we threw away the packaging and don't know the brand name, but if you see them in the store, buy them! They're not only cool looking; they really work to get her to hold her spoon correctly. A toddler dumping less food in her lap = happy parents.
5. Melissa & Doug Alphabet Stacking and Nesting Boxes - Another gift we received. Wynn adores these and plays with them every day. Scott and I keep finding ourselves talking about her intellectual development as measured by the complexity of tasks she achieves with these boxes - She can "nest" them so quickly now and is working on stacking them. One day I set them in a line on the window sill, and now she puts them up there and points at them, which is her way of telling me to sing the alphabet song. She also likes to play a game where we hide a toy under one of them and shuffle them up for her to guess which one it's hidden under. (We have another similar toy, but those are made of wood and really hurt when Wynn drops them on her (and our!) feet, so these sturdy cardboard ones are a definite improvement.)
6. Sterilite Storage Bowls - Four bowls and lids for $3.99 at Target; they even throw in a free set of measuring cups. Wynn has hours of fun with this super-cheap toy ... putting LEGO's in them, pretending to mix whatever's in the bowl with her spatula, wearing them as hats, etc. Cheap. Easy. Fun. And I can put them through the dishwasher if they get too grimy. Doesn't get much better than that.
7. Dreft Stain Remover - This was recommended by a friend who has four kids, so she knows about stain removal! It comes in a big bottle, is cheaper than the other brands, works beautifully, and smells like baby. Good stuff.