Keiko Zoll

Keiko Zoll is a writer, foodie, all-around geek and new mom to baby Judah, born May 2013. Married to her high school sweetheart, Larry, Keiko lives in the greater Boston area with her two adorable cats. She writes at Team Zoll, her personal blog about parenting, food and life's zany adventures and is the founder of The Infertility Voice, an online empowerment resource for those living with infertility. Keiko also nerds it up at Words Empowered, her social media and web design consultancy. When she's not writing into the wee hours of the morning or Instagraming a million pictures of her son, you can find her all over the social web, geeking out on Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.

Our Toddler's First Camping Trip Checklist

After nearly a two-year hiatus in summer camping trips, Team Zoll is ready to head back out into the wilderness! The most exciting part about our upcoming camping trip? Taking Judah with us for his first camping trip! While we’re not exactly backpacking into the deep forest, there are plenty of things we want to make sure we take to make sure that Judah is both comfortable, safe and entertained as we get closer with nature.

Besides the camping essentials like our tent, rain fly, flashlights and a cooler full of food and beverages, here’s our checklist for the camping essentials we need just for our toddler.

7 Tips for Safe Summer Fun in the Sun With Your Toddler

The summer weather here in New England has been perfectly glorious and sun-drenched the last few weeks. I’ll find just about any excuse to get out of the house and soak up the sun with my son, whether it’s just a quick walk downtown or an afternoon at the park. At Judah’s one-year checkup, our pediatrician told us that with the bright sunny summer days ahead, there’s plenty we can do to make sure that Judah stays safe in the sun.

Here are the 7 sun safety tips we use with our toddler every time we’re outdoors, so Judah can keep on having sunshine-y fun all summer long!

The Daycare Decision

Judah just started daycare two half-days a week. That first drop off was much harder for me than it was for him; he was so excited by the change in routine. As a stay-at-home mom, I felt like I wasn’t holding up my end of the deal, like I had somehow failed as a mom.

And then, even as I write this blog post, I remember I’m not just a stay-at-home mom – I’m a working mom, who just happens to work from home. The reality is that as Judah becomes more and more mobile and independent it’s getting harder and harder to get my work done during daylight hours. And with our mommy’s helper away for the summer, I was left with no help during the week.

Truth be told, I had started doing most of my writing at 1 a.m. After waking up entirely too bleary eyed – while my son was getting a wonderful uninterrupted night’s sleep – we knew it was time for a change.

Here’s how we made the daycare decision work for us.

He'll Walk When He's Good and Ready

Judah is almost 14 months old. He can say words like “light” and “cheese.” He understands difference between the words “wiggle” and “shake.” He knows where his ear is, what a brush is, and how to climb our stairs on his hands and feet. He sleeps through the night, naps like a pro, and eats just about anything that’s handed to him.

And yet… he’s still not walking. The more we talk to our friends and family about it, and even complete strangers in our daily travels, time and again, we hear the same thing:

“He’ll walk when he’s good and ready.”

Judah's Nautical First Birthday Party!

Ahoy there, matey! Sometimes I still can’t believe I have an honest-to-goodness 1-year-old on my hands. Judah had an amazing first birthday party in May, with friends and family traveling from all over the country to join us for his special day. We were so touched and honored that so many people could join us for a day that was filled with plenty of fun, laughter and celebration. After months of planning our nautical-themed party, we were thrilled with the way everything turned out.

Get inspired for summer celebrations of your own with Judah’s nautical first birthday party!

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