Sunday, December 14, 2008

Blue Cereal Milk

We've never been intimidated by the blueberry-toddler combination. Weapon X loved frozen blueberries when he was teething (use small ones as large blueberries can be a choking hazard), so we just gave them to him before bath time.

Now X finds joy in pouring frozen blueberries (thawed) into his cereal. The freezing process makes berries soft and releases the juices, so what you end up with is purple milk! I also slice up frozen strawberries to put in his cereal.
Buying berries frozen is one way to get these antioxidant filled foods organic all year round without breaking the bank.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Awesome kids music!

Yeah, I haven't been around lately.... but here's a little treat! Enjoy!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Splurge! Solia Flat Iron

Ok, I finally did it. I bought a flat iron for my crazy hair. For those of you who know me, this is a HUGE splurge, as I really don't like speding money on girly things.

I have been hearing really good things about the reliability and function of this iron. It has tourmaline plates, adjustable temperature, and can be used on damp or dry hair.

This is a big step for me ladies! Once in a while we have to splurge!

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Greenling Local Only Box

We recently decided to take a culinary adventure and get the Greenling Local box delivered. It is a giant box of organic, local produce. The great part is they pick everything for you. The bad part is if you are a picky eater you may get some items (like mushrooms!) that nobody in your house will eat.

This, our first box, came with items that made me realize how picky we are! The scary items were: eggplant (stewed it), asian eggplant (fried it), fresh black eyed peas (stewed it), mushrooms (gifted it to a neighbor), and sorrel...

I was a little frightened of the sorrel. I responded by immediately pureeing the whole bunch in my blender with some olive oil and putting it in the freezer with more olive oil on top.

On saturday, I made a stew with a lot of the random veggies. Big eggplant, sauteed onion, blackeyed peas, tomatoes, 2 potatoes, some left-over kabocha squash, salt, garlic powder and water all went into my crock pot for 20 hours. At that point, I added masala to taste and 1/3 of my pureed sorrel. In the future, I may add less. The sorrel has an incredibly intense flavor!

I don't know what I will do with the rest of the sorrel. This blog lists the items of the week and says I'm not getting any sorrel this week (whew!) I don't really want a back-log of frozen sorrel :)

Saturday, August 9, 2008

Health Nut - Gelatin Shapes

This is easy and fun to do with your kids. And these jigglers are much more healthy when you sweeten the gelatin with fruit juice instead of sugar!

4 Envelopes Knox Gelatin
3 c Fruit juice heated to
1 c Cold fruit juice

In a bowl, sprinkle gelatin over cold juice; let stand 1 minute.
Add hot juice and stir until gelatin is completely dissolved.
Pour into 9x13-inch pan; chill until firm.
Cut into1-inch squares or cut out special shapes with cookie cutters.
Makes about 9 dozen squares

If you make shapes with cookie cutters, line them up in a row. As shown below, each row should be as wide as your spatula. Cut the width of each row with your knife so each row comes out cleanly. If you try to get your shapes as close as you can, you will lose quite a few to tearing :(

You can throw all your left-overs into a container and use your imagination to find shapes!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

Toddler Tips: Tooth Brushing

My son is too smart for me!

Any tooth brushing trick works for a week (MAX!) and then we're at square 1.

The only thing that works for us with tooth brushing is to let him chew on the brush until he is done. Then when he is finished I "clean his mouth" with a thin cloth (Especially For Baby washcloths are perfect). I'm not sure why this works, but it does. He opens wide "like an alligator" and is full of cooperation.

I think brushing is an activity that he wants to be in control of. He does not like being dirty, so "cleaning his mouth" is separate from brushing, and is very important to him. He talks about his mouth being dirty with great concern.

I hope this helps some of you! Tooth brushing had been a nightmare for us!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Storage - Black Cabinet

Where did I get that great black cabinet in my post post a few weeks ago?

I got it at Home Decorators Collection. Beware! If you order from them, you will get catalogs for the rest of your life :p

Beyond Sesame Workshop - Programs for toddlers

Weapon X loves Sesame Street Workshop, but I would like him to be able to be more interactive with the computer. He always manages to hit function buttons which lock up the fun and frustrate all of us.

We have not tried any of the following, so we cannot endorse them, but we are interested in trying the following highly-rated, virus screened programs from CNet's

All of these programs have free trials, and some of them are completely free.

Key lock programs
Maddie - Customizable key lock
Toddler Keys 0.97 - Keys pop-up your pre-loaded pictures and sounds

Other fun options
Primitive Painter - Learn to use the mouse to color pictures
Kids Abacus - Count objects like bunnies and cakes.
ABC 4 Kids Workshop - Learn letters and basic spelling
Sebran’s ABC - Learn basic math, spelling and ABC's
My Reward Board 1.61 - A glorified sticker chart
Ten Amazing Fruits 2.2 - CNet called it Mr. Potato Head with fruit

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Hello Dolly!

My parents live in Harlingen, Texas. Hurricane Dolly is quickly approaching!!! The eye of the hurricane should hit the coast Wednesday morning bringing lots of wind, rain and possible tornados. Batten down the hatches people!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Austin Weekend, Kiddie Style

Saturday 6/28: Build a mini baseball game at Lowes - Free

Saturday & Sunday 6/28-29: Luling Watermelon Thump - $3. Kids under 11 free!

There are so many other fun things happening this weekend!

My kid is so smart!

Ok. I know I'm biased :) But my kid just blows me away!!!

Yesterday he was playing with the homemade caterpillars in the post below. He was having lots of fun making them go "Boing! Boing!" And then he turned one over and said, "egg mommy." It just blew me away that he made that connection between the caterpillars and the egg carton when we have never played with egg cartons before.

Another thing that surprised me is his understanding of the concept zero. I asked him, "do you want Mommy to brush your teeth for 5 seconds, or 10 seconds?" He replied, "zero seconds, Mommy!" I couldn't help getting excited about that one!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Free Toys - Egg Carton Caterpillars

Weapon X turns 2 soon and we're throwing a fun party at his grandma's house. I was talking with a friend about it today and he was wondering how many toys we had already bought him.

Uuuuuummmm... none! And I'll tell you why! We really can't fit a mountain of new toys in our 860 sqft condo! Plus, we get him new toys all year round. He went on to joke that X is pretty spoiled (yep!), but I forgot to mention that most of the toys he gets from us are used or homemade.

That's where these lovlies come in! Tonight I took a few cardboard egg cartons (insert save the earth plug here) and made some fugly caterpillars for X. It was fun for me, and I did it while Moss was putting X down to sleep (after I cooked dinner and put away all the dishes...whew!).

First I cut a cardboard egg carton into 2 pieces.

Then I dipped them in a pitcher full of water. I added food coloring to the water, thinking the cardboard would absorb the color, but it didn't. So, just soak the carboard in regular, old water.

I put parchment paper on the counter, and some paper towels on top of that. Then laid out the caterpillars and put a drop of food coloring on top of 1 hump. I spread it around immediately with a pastry brush. A paint brush would have been nice, but I didn't have a small one around, so I improvised! The green caterpillar took many drops per hump, but the blue went a lot further.

Then I painted eyes and decorations on each caterpillar and left them to dry. You can add pipe cleaners for tentacles, but I left them off for safety reasons... and I didn't have any ;)
I did this after X went to sleep because he is in the, "NO Mommy! MY DO IT!" stage, and it is best to do activities with him that are good for complete involvement.
Happy crafting!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Designing a Wall Box

Yesterday at 5pm I decided I was finally going to make that shelf that I always knew I wanted to be above the black cabinet in my kitchen. Weapon X had been a sick crankypants all weekend long, so I think I really needed an outlet.

In anycase, sometime after 5pm I left for Lowes. I had my dimensions planned out, so I had them cut my pieces. It was ready to hang at midnight, but I decided to give the paint a little more time to dry. Now it is hung in my kitchen, and I have to wonder why I didn't do it sooner.

It is 36" wide, 13.5" tall, and 16" deep. It is the perfect palce to display/store my stemware and wine bottles... away from grubby little toddler hands! When I planned the size and placement, I made sure I had room to store my sewing machine and beloved stand mixer underneath for easy access!

What I learned from this process is that when you want to finish a piece fast, having Lowes cut your pieces is great. You just have to deal with the inaccuracies in the cuts and move forward. It kept me from being a perfectionist! Also, I went on Sunday evening, so there wasn't a line of people behind me giving me dirty looks for making so many cuts :) I definitely would not try this on a Saturday morning!

Cost = $43. And I have some paint left over for another project!

I will post a tutorial another day.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Instead of a specialty non-slip pastry pad

Instead of buying a specialty non-slip baking liner, $20, to roll out your pastries (I use mine for pizza dough)
consider buying a roll of non-adhesive, reusable shelf liner for $6. From this slip-resistant, 5 foot roll, I cut 3 mats that I can use for rolling out pastries or playdough.

I do not assume this material is food or oven-safe, but it will keep my parchment paper from sliding around when I roll out pastries!

The label even says it is washable!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Texas Music - Sarah Sharp

Today I heard a really great artist on the University of Texas radio station, KUT, (that's 90.5 in Austin). Sarah Sharp has some great lyrics and her voice is genuine. I heard her sing live, in-studio, and I was really intrigued. You can get a pre-release of her latest album on iTunes.

Friday, June 13, 2008

Austin Weekend, Kiddie Style

When it comes to weekend activities, we always aim for free.

We comb the events pages for things like bell choir and music shows so Logan will have unique experiences without the price tag that comes along with the children's museum.

This weekend, we will probably hit some of the following free shows:

Every Sunday Ruta Maya from 10:30 AM to 11:30 AM
Laura Freeman with special guest Heather Jarry

Laura Freeman sings about colors, the environment and being outside with songs that involve children’s imaginations!

Thanks to Mr Johnny's for some great ideas.

Monday, June 2, 2008

Tools In My Kitchen - KitchenAid Stand Mixer

My KitchenAid stand mixer is certainly a luxury. I can never imagine dropping $300 on a brand new one, but it really is my favorite kitchen tool. Luckily for me, I received this beauty as a gift!

I can make whipped cream incredibly fast. I can make cookies without breaking my arm. I whip out the dough hook without hesitation to make a batch of pizza dough. I admit it. Having this fabulous machine makes me fearless in the kitchen!

I was also gifted the attachments above. This is, by far, the best value for attachments. Some other attachment options are a meat grinder, or a pasta roller.

With this set, I can grate cheese, or any vegetable for that matter, so quick that I have no excuses to buy the pre-grated stuff.

I use the slicers to slice sweet potatoes extra thin. I toss them in olive oil and salt. Then I throw them on a baking sheet to make sweet potato chips that even my 2 year old won't deny.

This is what the attachment looks like when it is all hooked up.
If you love to cook, the KitchenAid stand mixer will only make you love it more.

Friday, May 23, 2008

Tour De Cure - 110 miles!

The Tour de Cure was a success! I rode 110 miles from San Antonio to Austin over 2 days. The weather was GREAT! And the company was even better!

Christine and I are pretty evenly matched on speed and endurance, so we rode together both days.

This is my team in its entirety. Bobby and Wayne did the 77 mile ride on Sunday and Tyler did the 55 mile Sunday ride. Notice that we (the girls) were the only ones who braved 2 days on the road!

San Marcos was the overnight stop, so Logan and Moss spent the night with me in the dorms at Texas State. This picture was taken while we were waiting in line to get pasta!

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Tour De Cure

I am participating in a ride from San Antonio to Austin to benefit the American Diabetes Association. Click on the picture to go to my fundraising site! Even $5 makes a difference!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Greenie Meanie - Library Books

Instead of buying a new book and wasting paper (and space in your house), walk to your local library and check it out.

Austin has a great online system to find the book you are looking for. You can even put it on hold so it will be waiting for you when you are ready to go pick it up!

Check your local libary system to see if they have a similar system.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Sleep Success!!!

For all of you battling with sleep issues, I want to tell you that there is hope!!!

At 21 mo, Weapon X has been an all night nurser until a few weeks ago when he just stopped waking up at night. I had been sleeping with him on a futon matress on the floor in his room. because there just wasn't room for the 3 of us in our double bed!

The first step to getting him to sleep through the night was to leave after I nursed him. I found that he slept for longer stretches when I wasn't right there next to him. One morning I woke up at 6 and he had slept the whole night by himself!!!

The next step was getting him to go to sleep without the crazy crying fit! I knew it was time to really work on this when nursing was not enough to put him to sleep anymore.

We have been reading the “No Cry Sleep Solution for Toddlers” and it has helped a lot. X has gone to sleep himself, with no crying and for the past 2 nights!!! And he slept until 6:30 too!!! Amazing! I’m so proud of him!!!

You can get a lot of good information from articles on the website .

The big things that have been helping us are:

•Earlier bedtime. She suggests between 6:30 and 7:30 for the time they actually go to sleep.

•Making sure he is getting between 13 and 14 hours of sleep per day, including nap. She has a chart that lists sleep needs at different ages.

•Making room for wind down time before sleep. After jammies and potty time we go into his room and instead of me trying to get him to sleep right away I close the door and we read a few books. And then I touch his toes and talk about how his toes worked so hard for him today. They walked and ran and now they are tired. They need to go to sleep. I go through each body part. The second time I ask him to say “night night” to each part after I say how tired it is. Then I ask him for a kiss and tell him I’m going to be right out side his room. I give him a board book (The napping house) I turn off the light and leave. He complains for 30 seconds and then he is OUT! Amazing. I never thought it would happen!!!

•I put blackout fabric (very cheap at Jo Ann's Fabric) on his window because it is just too bright outside at 7pm!

She has a little chart that lists things that kids say when they are asked, “what do you do to try to go to sleep, and does it work?” All the kids had different answers like, “I stare at the ceiling” and all of them said their methods didn’t work. The bottom line is that kids have no clue how to go to sleep!

Good luck!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Killer Hamsters? What?

You read that correctly. Your hamster could kill you. I don't write this to be alarmist, just to give you the information. Apparently hamsters can get a virus and give it to you. It is rare for this to happen, but according to this article it pays to ask your pet store about the health screening of their animals. What will they think of next!?!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Food colorings and preservatives

It turns out that parent's instincts about food colorings and preservatives may be correct. A recent study showed a link between some food colorings and a reduction in the IQs of children. You can read an article about it here, but if you Google it, you will see this news has been published in many places, and these additives have been in question for some time.

According to the study, the food additives in question are:
Tartrazine (E102)
Ponceau 4R (E124) - Banned in the US
Sunset yellow (E110)
Carmoisine (E122) - Banned in the US
Quinoline yellow (E104)
Allura red AC (E129)
Sodium Benzoate (preservative)


I hope to be able to use cloth diapers at home with our second child. Most daycares don't accept cloth diapers, so that leaves disposables as the only option. We may consider switching to them for potty training, but we still have the daycare issue.

I ran across an interesting article about the politics of diapers. If you have the time, it is an interesting read. I will say that the article is strongly biased towards using cloth diapers!

If you are interested in using cloth diapers, but have no clue where to start, Jillian's Drawers has a 21 day trial pack of different cloth diapers. You only pay $10 if you send them all back after 21 days. You pay $100 if you keep them all.

Or you can read through the ZRecs Cloth Diaper Showdown which compares some of the more popular options!

Monday, April 7, 2008

Wash your eyes!

I have been commuting to work on my bike these days. It has been great fun and a great stress relief! The weather is gorgeous in Austin right now, so riding is just such a pleasant experience. In 1 month I will probably be complaining about the sweltering heat, but right now it is heaven!

Unfortunately, Austin is an allergy city. We have pollens in the air all year round and this makes for irritated eyes. When I was riding long distances before Weapon X was born, I had some eye issues caused by sweat and other irritants in the air.

I want to make sure to avoid the eye issues, so I have been flushing my eyes with saline after every ride. I have not had any issues yet, so that says something.

There are MANY options for saline or artificial tears, so feel free to shop around. Some have thimerosal, a preservative ingredient with Mercury. If the idea of putting Mercury in your eyes makes you uncomfortable, read the labels. Also consider reading the labels of your contact solution and mascara, because many of these also contain thimerosal.

If you do end up with a stye, or chalazion my opthomologist recommended wetting a wash cloth with water as hot as is comfortable. Press it against your eye(s) for 10 minutes multiple times per day. This should help the stye heal on its own. This works, and it pays to do this as soon as you feel irritation coming on. I had a few really bad experiences, and that was enough to last a lifetime!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

When you are frustrated, remember your kids think differently!

Match Me and I Will Grow
by Dr. James MacDonald

Yes, I know you want me to change in many ways.

Well, if you want me to pay more attention, then pay attention to me.

If you want me to play more, then play more with me.

If you want me to do more, then show me something I can do.

If you want me to communicate, then communicate in any of the ways I can do.

If you want me to talk, then talk in ways I can do.

If you want me to learn your languange, then learn and speak my language first.

If you want me to talk about your ideas, then talk about mine first.

You and I live two worlds far apart. Mine is a world of actions, feelings, and sensations.

I am a feeler and a mover. Your world is mainly one of thought and language. You are a thinker and a talker.

I know you want me to think and talk like you, but it's taken you years to get where you are. Give me time, and I will get there.

I will get there best when you live with me in my world. When you act and move and communicate as I can.

Match what I do, and show me the possible next step; and I will grow with you.

I am learning. Please don't make me do it alone.

Join my natural path, and we will grow together.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

My computer is very sick...

My HD is on life support, and that makes me sad. But! It also gives me the opportunity to learn more about how to fix a sick computer!

This is where I am in the process, maybe you can help.
  • I hooked up my HD to my husband's laptop and retrieved the data (YAY!)
  • I tried to boot from the Windows disk to reinstall Windows.
  • Windows tried to "look for existing versions of Windows"
  • During its search, Windows gets confused, and I have to shutdown :(

I read that I should disconnect all peripherals (like my scanner) so I will do that and try again.

My old IT guy also suggested I run a diagnostic on the HD. I will also try that and see how it goes!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

A few words from George Carlin

Do you realize that the only time in our lives when we like to get old is when we're kids? If you're less than 10 years old, you're so excited about aging that you think in fractions.

'How old are you?' 'I'm four and a half!' You're never thirty-six and a half. You're four and a half, going on five! That's the key

You get into your teens, now they can't hold you back. You jump to the next number, or even a few ahead.

'How old are you?' 'I'm gonna be 16!' You could be 13, but hey, you're gonna be 16! And then the greatest day of your life .. . You become 21. Even the words sound like a ceremony YOU BECOME 21. YESSSS!!!

But then you turn 30. Oooohh, what happened there? Makes you sound like bad milk! He TURNED; we had to throw him out. There's no fun now, you're Just a sour-dumpling.

What's wrong? What's changed?

You BECOME 21, you TURN 30, then you're PUSHING 40. Whoa! Put on the brakes, it's all slipping away. Before you know it, you REACH 50 and your dreams are gone.

But wait!!! You MAKE it to 60. You didn't think you would!

So you BECOME 21, TURN 30, PUSH 40, REACH 50 and MAKE it to 60.

You've built up so much speed that you HIT 70! After that it's a day-by-day thing; you HIT Wednesday!

You get into your 80's and every day is a complete cycle; you HIT lunch; you TURN 4:30 ; you REACH bedtime. And it doesn't end there. Into the 90s, you start
going backwards; 'I Was JUST 92.'

Then a strange thing happens. If you make it over 100, you become a little kid again. 'I'm 100 and a half!'

May you all make it to a healthy 100 and a half!!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Estimating your Taxes

If you would like to estimate your taxes or your tax rebate, you can head on over to the Turbo Tax Website where they have all kinds of fun calculators.

If you plan on buying Turbo Tax or Quicken to do your own taxes, remember the basic versions don't handle Alternative Minimum Tax very well (for those of you who play the stock market).

I'm a lucky ducky. My mother is an accountant!

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

Though magnets are cool, toys with magnets are not safe to play with.

My favorite parent blog Z Recommends recently posted an article that reminds us that we, as parents, make the final call about what toys are safe for our children. Mega, a brand of toys that include magnets, recently had another in a string of recalls. Though Mega continues to say their remaining toys are safe, magnets continue to prove themselves unsafe for young children to play with. The CPSC site has a great article explaining the risks.

It is very sad, but we cannot trust that businesses have only our children's safety in mind. They have a commitment to their bottom line, and this creates a constant battle between inexpensive and safe toys. Many times these goals do not align and the company has to make decisions that result in risking the safety of our children.

Remember, a toy that has not been recalled is not necessarily safe. Use your best judgement when buying toys for your children, and do not assume a company has your child's best interest in mind.

For information about recalls, you can go to the government's recall reporting site or Healthy

Monday, March 10, 2008

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

A reason not to vote in the primary

Everyone seems pretty excited about the primary here in Texas. We have an opportunity to really make a difference this time. So why wouldn't you want to vote in the primary? I can think of one pretty good reason.

If you are an independant, and by that I mean you do not associate yourself with either party, voting in the primary election prevents you from signing any petition to put independant candidates on the ballot for ANY elected office in this election year.

If this matters to you, you may want to abstain from voting in the primary.

Monday, March 3, 2008

Kite Festival!

Originally uploaded by saucydesigns
Go over to my Flickr page to see all the photos from the Kite Festival!

Instead of losing your baby socks and washcloths...

try putting all those small items in a delicates bag instead of throwing them in the laundry basket. They are much easier to keep track of that way!

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Weapon X

Weapon X posted more pictures over here.

Food cooling technique

When you heat up something for your little one, and it gets a little too hot, spread it out on a plate to let it cool. We have stoneware plates that suck the heat right out of anything, so it only takes about 30 seconds to cool some hot whatever the heck that is! Sorry for the bad picture, but you get the point.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

The very best cupcakes ever!

I got a great cupcake recipe from one of my favorite blogs. And I used the Fluffy Chocolate Frosting recipe from the Cake Mix Doctor. The evidence on my husband's face shows how good the frosting was!
1 stick of butter at room temperature
2/3 c unsweetened cocoa powder, sifted
3 c confectioner's sugar, sifted
1/3 c whole milk
2 tsp vanilla extract
1/4 tsp salt.
Mix the butter and cocoa until well blended and soft
Add the remaining ingredients and mix until well combined.
Add more sugar or milk to get desired thickness.
The books says to beat for 2 to 3 minutes, but I gave it a good 5 minutes so it would be ultra fluffy!
At room temperature, this frosting spreads really well!

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Sometimes motherhood calls for a cocktail...

Today was one of those days. Weapon X seems to be learning so much! Today he took a 2D wooden bee and waved it in the air saying "Fly bee. Fly!" But with this higher awareness has come the need to test me. So today he did. We came home, filled with frustration, from a failed attempt to eat dinner out. He just refused to sit down at the table. Instead he jumped, giggled, and had a grand old time.
Having just watched Supernanny last night, I was primed and ready to go with my naughty chair technique. Now I feel so guilty for disciplining him when he was just trying to tell me something.

When I changed his diaper before bed, I felt like a horrible parent. He usually only poops once per day, but he had pooped for the third time! He already had a slight diaper rash from the unexpected second poop. Now he has a pretty nasty diaper rash, and it could have been prevented if I had only read his refusal to sit as a signal that he had pooped!

What's done is done. I will just have to slather his bottom with Dr. Smith's and hope he doesn't have 3 poops tomorrow :)

Update: One should never shop on Amazon after having a cocktail :) I found the following fabulous things.

All you need is Luvs...

We have tried all the big brand diapers. We have tried the store brand diapers. In the end, we settled on Luvs. Pampers, HEB, Huggies, and Target diapers all leaked on us... especially at night. Seventh Generation diapers chafed X in the leg/hip crease.

Luvs have yet to give us a problem. Why? I think it is because we have a skinny kid. The luvs come up really high in the back to help Weapon X avoid selling crack. And that prevents leaks too. Surprisingly, the Luvs are not bulky at all. They feel very thin, but somehow they hold on to the liquid.

So thank you Luvs, for creating a diaper that works for the skinny kid. His bed and car seat, ad our washing machine thank you too!

Friday, January 18, 2008

Yo Yo! It's Potty Time!

They say stressing out about potty training is a sure way to keep it from happening, so we plan to go with the flow... ok, I know that was a bad joke :) You can read an insightful article here.

But, it never hurts to be ready when your kid is ready. So we are going to get a potty. We haven't decided on one yet. Some people swear that you need to let your kid pick the potty, but I think you need to make sure your limit the choices to pottys you can live with!

Your two potty types are the toilet insert and the stand alone potty. Stand alone pottys can go anywhere in the house, which can be important! Inserts stay on the toilet, but they can go with you to restaurants and other public pottying places.
My choice is the Baby Bjorn Potty Chair. It only has 2 pieces, which makes for easier cleaning.
Moss wants to get something like the Padded Potty Seat with Step Stool, but I'm afraid that Weapon X will be wary of sitting on the big potty at first. He has shown much interest in flushing and rolling out large amounts of TP, but I tried to pick him up to put him on the potty once and it really freaked him out.

Here are some links to reviews of other potty options: