When our kids are born, nurses clean them up and dress them with those little knitted caps to keep their heads warm.
They don’t have to wear those hats for long, but in the winter hats still help keep our kids warm because they prevent heat from escaping from the head, which means retained body heat that keeps them warmer.
The fun thing is there are so many cute baby hats for winter. My girlfriend’s little boy wears a fleece hat with little ears that makes him look like a teddy bear.
The nice thing about many of these cute animal-looking baby hats is that many are designed with ear flaps that naturally fall over the baby’s ears. Many just pull on so there’s no fussing with a fastener.
Aside from looking cute, choose a hat that is machine washable and comfortable. You don’t want it to constrict your baby in any way.
Choosing a hat with fleece lining offers both comfort and an added layer of warmth. And if you do pick a hat that needs to be fastened, buy one that fastens easily with Velcro or snaps. If they are complicated, babies can get fussy if it takes too long and no one needs a battle when it’s time to go bye-bye.
Avoid hats with embellishments like buttons that can become choking hazards or like feathers which could cause an allergic reaction. Just keep it simple…and cute.
When buying a hat for your baby, be sure to try it on for fit. A hat that’s too small will be uncomfortable and will have to be replaced quickly.
If your baby throws a fit when you try to put a hat on him, go with a cozy fleece hoodie. They are easy to put on and the hood makes a handy head covering that can be slipped off if the baby starts to get too warm in the car.
I recently caught the Christmas movie Jingle All the Way, starring Arnold Schwarzenegger as a dad who has promised his son a Turbo Man action figure for Christmas only to find out it’s the hottest toy of the year and impossible to find. It always makes me think of the Cabbage Patch dolls of the 80s.
So what are the hot toys flying off the shelves this year?
Elmo is making a comeback this year as a hot Christmas toy as Playskool Sesame Street Big Hugs Elmo. And Mattel has found another way to tap into their Barbie brand with Mattel’s Barbie Digital Makeover, which lets little girls put make up on their own digital face. I like this much better than real make up on young faces.
Disney Infinity for Xbox 360 is another hot item. It’s the perfect toy to hook your kids on video games. Wait! Is that what we really want to do?
Not to sound like a commercial, but these items are flying off the shelves, so if you plan to have any one of them under the tree, its best to buy them sooner than later. I think it was so much easier when we had one hot toy to deal with.
Max Daniel Designs offers luxurious and super soft blankets for both babies and adults. If you’re looking for a special baby shower gift or a pampering treat for yourself, you can’t go wrong with a Max Daniels blanket.
Max Daniel Designs is a female-owned business. The company has grown from a small specialty collection based in Los Angeles to a luxury brand featured in showrooms in Los Angeles, New York, Atlanta, Dallas, Tokyo, and Taipai.
Max Daniel Designs have been spotted with Jennifer Lopez, Nicole Kidman, and Jennifer Garner. Garner’s daughter Violet is said to own Max Daniel Designs baby blankets in a dozen colors.
All Max Daniel Designs blanket and throws are proudly made in the USA. The company firmly beliefs in supporting local manufacturers to provide job opportunities for as many people as possible.
Max Daniel Designs blankets are machine washable in cold water, but need to be air dried flat to preserve their softness.
Blankets from Max Daniels Designs come in animal prints or solid colors. The selection seems to skew towards girlish designs, but there is a chocolate and blue polka dot blanket that would be really cute for a baby boy. The solid colored chocolate, platinum, champagne, and celery blankets would also be at home in a baby’s nursery.
Photo credit: Max Daniel Designs
Whether or not you should pierce your baby’s ears is a matter of conscience. Though if you decide to do it, don’t be surprised if some people react negatively.
In some cultures, like Spain and Latin America, piercing a baby girl’s ears is done in the hospital. In other cultures, it is treated more as a rite of passage performed around age 10, and in still others it is thought to be reserved for gypsies or women of ill-repute.
Realize that your decision won’t please everyone, and it doesn’t have to.
I grew up in a household where my father told me that, “if God wanted you to have holes in your ears you’d have been born with them.” As a teen, he finally relented and I got my ears pierced at Claire’s Boutique. When my daughter was 10, she received pierced ears as a birthday gift, so I guess I fell into the rite of passage group. I just figured she’d be old enough to keep her piercings clean and cared for.
Now many pediatricians will pierce baby’s ears at age 3 months and up. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) says there is little risk at any age if the piercing is performed carefully and it’s properly cared for. However, they do recommend waiting until the child is old enough to take care of the piercing (yay, I did this right).
If you do decide to pierce when your child is an infant, be sure not to place the earring hole too low on their earlobe, because as the baby grows, the hole will become lower. Keep a close eye on your baby’s ears for any sign of infection and stay in touch with your doctor if you have any questions. Be sure to notify them if your baby runs a fever or the earlobe becomes swollen or red.
Photo credits: abardwell
The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission reported on November 21, that Angelcare Monitors Inc. is voluntarily recalling 600,000 baby monitors following the death of two infants due to strangulation. A cord attached to the sensor pad, which is placed beneath the mattress of the crib to monitor movement of the baby, is said to pose a strangulation risk if it is pulled into the crib.
According to the report, along with the two infants who have died due to strangulation from the cord, two others have been entangled but not fatally.
Angelcare, which is based in Canada, is making a repair kit available that includes a rigid protective cord cover. The cord will thread through this piece to keep it safely tucked away out of reach and will also include a new electric cord warning label and revised instructions. Consumers should stop using the product immediately and contact the company for the repair kit.
The recall includes all versions of Angelcare sensor monitors including model numbers:
Look for the model number on the back of the nursery monitor unit.
This is a voluntary recall on the part of Angelcare Monitors, Inc. For more information, visit the website or call toll-free at 1- 855-355-2643 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. EST Monday through Friday, or email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Photo credits: cpsc.gov
When my kids were babies, I admit I didn’t think of oral care until they had quite a few teeth. They watched me brush my teeth and so getting a toothbrush into their little mouths didn’t take much effort. However, actually trying to get any brushing done was another matter. It was more something to chew on with brushing a learned skill down the road.
A few months ago, when I saw my girlfriend’s baby chewing on a clear plastic item I thought it was some kind of new teething toy. She explained it was a baby toothbrush, and “He loves chewing on it.” That meant he loved “brushing his teeth,” even though he didn’t have any yet.
It turns out that this is age appropriate and effective oral care for toddlers. The hospital had included it in the kit of things they gave to new moms.
Now with another friend expecting, I thought about that baby toothbrush as a shower gift. To my surprise, I found an entire infant oral care kit that includes 5 pieces including a finger toothbrush that easily slips on to mom’s index finger to make a handy teether that massages baby’s gums.
It made me think of all the times my kids gnawed on my finger – this would have been ideal. The kit also includes a gum massager which is much like the “toothbrush” the hospital gave my girlfriend. Instead of bristles, it has molded nubs ideal for teething and first teeth.
It also includes baby’s first “real” toddler toothbrush with soft bristles, an angled mirror, and a stand to hold it all. I admit I never thought of using a mirror in my child’s mouth but it sure would make it easier to see if those molars are coming in.
This kit offers real oral care for babies and toddlers. I think it will make a great gift.
Photo credits: Amazon
The MamaNatalie birthing simulator kit is designed to train medical professions and midwives for live births that range from “normal” to complex scenarios. It looks somewhat like a backpack and straps onto the operator who plays the role of the expecting mom.
I say operator because the person wearing this birthing simulator actually has control over the scenario and can respond to the student’s performance. This includes bleeding, positioning, delivery of the baby, delivery of placenta, fetal heart sounds, uterine compression and more.
This kit includes the whole nine yards for a realistic birthing experience. It’s more than a fake baby bump. It includes fake baby with umbilical cord attachment, fake bodily fluids, and of course fake blood. All you need to do is add water. The baby even cries upon delivery!
The only thing missing is the labor pains, but I’m sure with the right operator this can be faked as well.
This tool has been used since 2010 in the Helping Babies Breathe training program in Tanzania where it has contributed to a reduction of newborn deaths by asphyxia by 47%. When one of these birthing simulators is bought in a high-income country, the company donates a kit to a child-saving initiative in a country that can’t afford them. They’ve already donated more than 1,000.
This simulator offers a realistic opportunity for birthing attendants and midwives to practice obstetric and newborn care. The kit was conceived by Laerdal Global Health which also makes CPR dummies.
The birthing simulator kit teaches trainees how to respond to potential complications during childbirth. It includes features like head articulation, umbilical pulse, the baby’s heartbeat and more. The transition from this training experience to real-life delivery will be a minor one. I think it’s a brilliant tool.
Photo credits: Laerdal Global Health
I listened to music while pregnant because some studies said it might make my baby smarter, but there still isn’t any real conclusive research to back that up.
However, there is new research which was presented by researchers from the University of Montreal at the Neuroscience 2013 conference in San Diego on November 10. It showed that moms-to-be who exercise as little as 20 minutes 3 times a week during their pregnancy can advance a newborn’s brain activity.
The study randomly assigned 60 women into one of two groups. One group was given an exercise regimen to follow and the others were not. The women kept exercise logs and used pedometers and accelerometers which let the researchers track their level of activity more accurately.
When the babies were born, the researchers recorded the newborns’ brain activity for the first 8 to 12 days. The results showed that the babies whose moms exercised had brains that were more fully developed.
We’ve heard for years that exercise is good for us while we’re pregnant, and now we learn it is good for our babies, too. I did exercise while pregnant, but that was because I was trying to manage my weight. I have to admit, I never would have thought it had anything to do with my children’s brains!
The current recommendations by the American College of Obstetrics and Gynecologists advises women to exercise moderately for about 30 minutes almost every day. This can help alleviate backaches and improve sleep and even mood. Now this study shows it also brings about improved brain function in newborns.
While this is promising, more study is needed…like following these babies in life to see if the effects continue with accelerated development as they mature. If they do, we could looke at exercise during pregnancy as part of college prep!
Photo credits: Patrick Feller
When I breastfed my kids, one of the benefits was convenience. I never had to mix formula or warm a bottle. Whether it was the middle of the night or on-the-go, feeding time was convenient because the milk was always ready to be served.
When in public, I just draped a small blanket over my shoulder, and no one was even aware that it was feeding time. It wasn’t a big deal for me or the people around me.
When I read about the “lactation stations” installation at the Burlington, VT International Airport, I just shook my head thinking it was a place for moms to sneak off to hide breastfeeding from the public, but it isn’t that.
The breastfeeding kiosk is the product of Mamava Solutions and features: easy-to-clean surfaces, a fold-down table, a power outlet, and a place to sit down to easily use a breast pump while accommodating a stroller and luggage. The purpose of the kiosk is to offer a place for nursing moms to comfortably use a breast pump while traveling. The lactation stations also offer a quiet place to nurse which helps with easily distracted babies.
Mamava hopes to be able to supply these free-standing lactation stations in the workplace, too, to offer a clean, safe, and private place for moms to pump when they are at work.
“With 4,000,000 babies born in the United States yearly that is a lot of nursing mothers in the workforce and on the go. Imagine if every one of those mothers had access to clean, beautifully designed places to pump while they’re away from their babies, how that could impact the health and well being of our community!” — mamava.com
Photo credits: Wha’ppen