MainStays Kids Plastic 24 Piece Dish Set.

Having two toddlers means we go through a lot of dishes. Being the smart shopping momma that I am, I LOVE a good deal. Especially on things that my kids will out grow or not use for very long. When it comes to children’s dishes, yeah the sets with fun animals on them are cute, but are they really worth the price?

I was recently in Walmart browsing the back to school section. I know what you are thinking “But she has two toddlers, what does she need in that section?” I have a thing about office supplies. Anyway, as I am looking around at lunch pails I see this 24 piece plastic dish wear set for only $5!

I was so excited to buy this! I love the fun colors and obviously the price. What I love most is that these plates and bowls do to not have a plastic film to them that bubbles up or rips after too many uses. We have had several plates and bowls like that. Water would get underneath the plastic, it was hard to get out and would start to grow mold. So we instantly threw those out.

 

I love the idea of the lunch trays. They will be great when we travel. Toddlers are all about independence and like to carry their own plates. Paper plates are often flimsy and my son drops them. They trays are light enough, sturdy enough, and easy to distributed food across so the weight is even. This will make it easier for Emmett to carry his own plates. The size of the tray is also a win for me, I can fit more variety of things on his tray. And like most families, at our reunions there is always a huge variety of food to try.

The plates and bowls are amazing as well. They are light weight, easy for little hands to carry and great size. We have had a carrying issue in the past.

The best part about the forks and spoons are the length. This makes it easy for parents to help toddlers navigate food to their mouth. If you have ever tried to feed a kid with a short spoon or fork, you know what I am talking about. The forks and spoons are very durable so they wont break as easy as some other plastic wear. Plus, how fun are these colors?

As you can see, the cups are easy to use for little hands. They are super lightweight and small enough for both of my kiddos to hold comfortably. This makes learning to use a cup so much easier.

Con’s: They are not dishwasher or microwave safe. Which is not a big deal, I don’t mind hand washing. But it is not convenient when you are busy and just want to load the dishwasher and go.

I love the price Mainstays has set for this, that was a big factor in being buying this item. All around I will give the Mainstays Plastic 24 Piece Dish Set a 8 out of 10.

38 Simple ways to bond as a Family

When you think about spending time with your family, you might think about dinner time where you discuss your day, Sunday evening board games, or camping on the weekends. It all might have been so fun or relaxing, but it also helped you build a strong bond with you parents, siblings, and other members of your family. As children grow they learn everything about life from their parents, having a strong bond helps children grow more confident in themselves. It has also been suggested that children who have steady positive interaction with their parents will less likely have negative behaviors or suffer from depression.

Often the biggest challenge families have when trying to set aside family time is when and how to do it. The great thing about spending time with your family and bonding is that it can literally happen when ever and where ever. It could be something big like a road trip or something small like taking 15 minutes a day to talk. Many people seem to think that spending time with the family has to be routine, it is a nice thought, but not ever family has that option.

If you have ever worked in a public setting such as restaurant, gas station, stores, etc, you know that you don’t always have a set schedule; you might not even have the same days off each week. Some people even work over night which leaves very little time during the day to sleep and do other daily living activities, others might even work opposing shifts as their S/O. So how do you plan to spend time with family when you live an unconventional schedule? You have to be creative with the things you do.

  1. Plan trips and events a month in advance
  2. Check out local events and festivals
  3. Research your family genealogy
  4. Write notes to each other
  5. Find time to read together
  6. Talk walks
  7. Tell your kids stories about your childhood
  8. Ask for their help with meal planning
  9. Play card or board games
  10. Invent your own family game. Example; Trivia about your family
  11. Color and draw together
  12. Start a family journal
  13. Camp out or camp “in”
  14. Video chat
  15. Learn about a country and its cultures
  16. Do crafts
  17. Take an interest in your children’s interests
  18. Bake or cook together
  19. Find a new show to watch each week
  20. Start a family group message or text
  21. Start a family scrap book
  22. Play dress up at grandma and grandpas
  23. Volunteer
  24. Talk in accents all day
  25. Spend time with each person individually
  26. Ask your kids what they want to do
  27. Make Holiday decor
  28. Simply just talk to each other
  29. Build a fort or tree house
  30. Catch fire flies
  31. Make goal charts and help each other meet their goals
  32. Plant flowers or a vegetable garden
  33. Take a class together
  34. Stargaze
  35. Watch the sun rise or set
  36. Go to an SCA event or a Renaissance fair
  37. Go berry picking
  38. Have a dance party

I hope this list helps you create beautiful memories and have some summer fun!