loving: Tubby Todd

I followed Tubby Todd for a while on social media before a trip to the States gave us the opportunity to finally give it a try, and I’m so glad we did! The whole family loves it and even though we’re a little bit precious with some products (hopefully they’ll ship to Japan sometime soon), most things have lasted many months even with regular use.

Here’s why we love it:

It doesn’t aggravate my sensitive skin!

I need to be especially careful about fragrance, so I’ve used a handful of standby unscented products for most of my life and hesitate to change things up. Once I started shopping for baby products, I was surprised by how many are scented to smell “baby fresh” – even diapers! – and found that some “natural” baby products still contain ingredients that aggravate my skin. So while we try to avoid parabens and other icky preservatives, we often use the best formulas we can find from brands (Aveeno, Cetaphil, Aquaphor) that are least likely to give me a reaction, since everything my kids use, I use – and vice versa. 

We’ve been using Tubby Todd products for over 6 months now and no one has seen any evidence of irritation or allergic reaction to anything we’ve used. I’m so pleased to have found this line of skincare, but the bubble bath has a special place in my heart because 30 years ago, my mom couldn’t find a bubble bath that didn’t upset my skin – a whole childhood of bubble-less baths!

I was nervous to try the Tubby Todd bubble bath, but it’s been a dream and doesn’t leave any film or stickiness in the tub either. Now that winter is here, it’s been as much of a treat for me as it is for the kids to whip up a tub of those satisfying bubbles. The original smell is lovely, but we’ve been trying the seasonal limited editions and have liked some of those just as much, or even more.

It smells amazing!

Guys, the hair & body wash has a lavender/rosemary scent that is kind of outdoorsy and so comforting. Mochi thinks the fragrance is similar to the Aesop hand soap that he loves, which was another happy surprise. After just a few days we realizes that the whole family was going to use it, so we ordered a few of the “extra tubby” pump bottles and gladly gave them some coveted space in our luggage.

We haven’t come across a Tubby Todd scent we donn’t like, but the body wash is probably the all-around favorite.

The creams are saving my hands!

Winter in Tokyo is incredibly dry and my hands always take it the hardest. Between the dry weather and all the hand washing, my “housewives’ eczema” flares up and my poor fingers begin to peel. While I’m not consistent enough to be completely symptomless, using either the dream cream or mama hand cream throughout the day and rubbing in some all over ointment before bed is keeping things manageable for the first time in years.

The dream cream is thick, like you’d expect of a hand cream and the all over ointment is even richer, but without the oily sheen that you sometimes get from something so buttery or moisturizing and it’s not chalky like many diaper creams. Over the summer, the ointment was been amazing to help with mild sunburn and it’s otherwise helped us battle everything from a weird dry spot on our son’s back or tired heels, to an irritated baby bum and that “tight” feeling hands get after too much soap.

I keep the mama hand cream next to the kitchen sink, since the fresh ginger and lime scent seems especially at home there, but I think the lighter shea butter and mint scent from the basics line is my preference.

It’s lovely to look at!

This may sound silly, but I’m a person who decants most of the soaps and shampoos around the house because all the mixed packaging drives me a little crazy. For our first order, I got a basics bundle and tube of hand cream from their “mama” line. They’ve recently updated the labels to be more colorful, but I think the black and white designs are also really cute! Even mochi was impressed by the packaging and the kiddo loved coloring the box:

I’m waiting for a package from my mom that will include some of the recent limited edition products, as well as the conditioner, which I’m planning to try for myself. They’ve hinted on social media that international shipping may be coming later this year, so I’ll be sure to update here if a direct-to-Japan option becomes available.

What are your favorite skincare products for your kiddos? Does your family have any allergies or sensitivities that impact your choices?
kuri xx

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easy screen time system for little kids

My kids are still pretty little, but we reached a point a few months ago where the kiddo (4 years old) was getting more worked up about his “shows” than I liked. I also realized that plugging him into Netflix in the afternoons was saving me from having to entertain him when the baby was fussy or I needed to prepare dinner; I was just as hooked on the habit as he was! So we decided to step back and make some changes.

Here are the 4 things we did: READ MORE

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loving: Made by Mary necklaces

For two Christmases in a row, my gift request has been a customized necklace from Made by Mary – and I have a growing wish list of styles, so I wouldn’t be disappointed to receive another one! READ MORE

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kiwi kale smoothie recipe and this week’s meal plan

What did you eat over the holidays? In Japan it’s traditional to prepare an elaborate collection of osechi ryōri in advance and pull them out for oshogatsu (New Year’s day) celebrations – and then for easy meals over the next few days, rather than cook on a day meant for resting. I like the idea, but don’t love all of the classic osechi flavors so we decided to go rogue this year and skip it altogether. READ MORE

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easy DIY Christmas Gifts to make with kids

We’ve gotten into the habit of letting the kiddo make (at least part of) the gifts he gives to family. Starting when he was just a toddler, we set up easy projects for him and they’re always a hit. If you want to do something with your little ones, there’s still time! Here are a few quick and easy ideas that could be pulled off this weekend: READ MORE

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birthday cakes & this week’s meal plan

I didn’t get a post up last week because the little one was sick with a fever and I was trying to balance caring for (and entertaining) her with getting some work done. Luckily, we celebrated her birthday a few days early so we were able to just relax through the week and have a casual dinner on the actual day. I ended up making two cakes – a funfetti-style smash cake and a coconut cake for everyone else. They both came out great! READ MORE

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our Advent calendars this year (spoiler: they’re picture books and Duplo!)

We always end up with a chocolate calendar, even on the years I swear them off, but this season we’re trying out a few popular Advent trends to see if one of them sticks around and becomes a family tradition.

Our first countdown to Christmas is this basket of children’s books. I had originally thought of wrapping them and putting them under the tree, but then I realized how much paper (and time!) that would take. Instead, I evicted our board book collection from its basket and refilled it with holiday books numbered from 1-24. Tie a red ribbon around it and we’re done! READ MORE

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Kinder Advent calendar & this week’s meal plan

Do you do a chocolate Advent calendar? In our house, we usually get one but since the kiddo is so little, he has to share the chocolates with mom or dad (one of my better ideas, I must say). And because the chocolate is a treat for the adults too, we try to get a good quality set that everyone can look forward to after dinner. In the past we’ve picked up something nice at Costco or the Lindt shop at our train station, but this year one of mochi’s sisters beat us to it and definitely scored major “cool aunt” points by arriving from Germany with a giant one filled with Kinder surprise eggs. I think building the little toys is at least as exciting for the kiddo as eating chocolate, so he’s loving it! READ MORE

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creamy tomato gnocchi & this week’s meal plan

Did you celebrate Thanksgiving last week? If so, I hope you had a great one! We made a little feast, including this pumpkin pie and the pecan slab pie from Smitten Kitchen‘s new cookbook and both were great. The kiddo loves baking, so it was nice to have the day off to slowly prepare everything together. He also made our cranberry sauce and is so proud of it!  READ MORE

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why we’re loving Not Quite Narwhal by Jessie Sima

We spent over 2 months in the US this summer and found ourselves visiting the local library several times a week. Having access to so many beautiful children’s books (in English) was such a treat for this little Tokyo family and we fell in love with a range of new authors, illustrators, and characters. But out of all those books, the one we *had* to buy as soon as we got home was Not Quite Narwhal. 

The illustrations are adorable, but that’s not the only reason we love it. READ MORE

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