Monthly Archives: March 2010

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sanity saver

As a mom, you know that pesky feeling of never being able to get your hands on what you need, exactly when you need it: a fresh wipe when your baby’s hands are covered with sand, a tissue when your toddler has burst into her latest crying fit…How refreshing it is to be able to tuck a Carabean into your bag and feel you can take on the challenges-with-child du jour. These clips will save the day when the sun is in your baby’s eyes (attach a blanket over her stroller, and you’ll got instant shade). Or when her favorite toy always seems to land on the car floor just when the light turns green (affix Teddy Bear to her car seat and voila!). The uses for this clever, why-didn’t-I-think-of-that gadget are so plentiful, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it. The latest incarnation of the Carabean is Tent in a Bag, a handy tote that contains 4 clamps and a printed blanket that can become a makeshift fort when you’re at the park or stuck in a hotel room with the kids. Or on a rainy day like today here in the Northeast, this inventive product can be a godsend.

In a Nutshell: Motherhood can be messy. Cut yourself a little slack and stock up on some of these clips for whatever kid crisis comes your way. They make great baby shower gift toppers, or for bigger kids, the perfect anecdote to a dreary day.

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do these hips lie?

Pregnancy can do cruel things to the female form: the stretch marks, extra “tummy padding”…and did we mention those hips? After my first daughter was born, I didn’t notice a tremendous change in my figure (hardly an hourglass one to begin with). But after the second girl, whatever beauty I had acquired during those nine months was gone for good. All I had left was a pair of hips that wouldn’t slide into my favorite jeans anymore. Perhaps if I’ve had the HipSlimmer after she was born, I wouldn’t have cursed myself on a daily basis. I recently checked out this post-pregnancy corset at a baby products convention and was admittedly a bit skeptical. Could this lingerie-inspired device truly get women’s hips back to their pre-baby bodies? I wanted to get the scoop. Turns out it’s the hormones that are the culprit; they’re released while you’re pregnant in preparation for childbirth. Once you’ve delivered your not-so-little bundle of joy, and your hips are still malleable (and you’re feeling relatively good), you can wear the HipSlimmer either over your clothes or at night, if you’re especially modest. It’s designed to apply slight pressure to your hips, and ultimately return them to their..ahem “previous condition.”

In a Nutshell: Wearing the HipSlimmer every day for a couple of months might seem like a big commitment for some, but if your shape means that much to you, make like a Victorian and lace up. You might just be able to get your Calvins back on again…

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play with your phone

Remember your trusty Chatter Telephone toy? The one you dutifully pulled behind you as you toddled around the house back in the day? Well, fast- forward to the present where your tech-savvy kid can tap on your iPhone faster than you can check your e-mail. Fisher-Price has tweaked its telephone for a new generation that can do more than talk in real time. Now you can download the Chatter Telephone App, along with one for See ‘n Say and the Little People Farm, from iTunes and let your preschooler play to her heart’s content. The Chatter Telephone features three screens–Numbers, Music and People in Your Neighborhood–that help kids count, listen to different instruments and learn about grown-ups at work. Hey, in this world, busy signals just don’t exist. Warning: If you hand your iPhone over to your kid with this app loaded, you may not get it back.

In a Nutshell: Long lines at the grocery store? With the Chatter Telephone App on your phone, we say: bring ‘em on.

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lather up

Remember the famous jingle ‘Calgon, take me away? where the mom stole a few moments for herself behind closed doors to indulge in a bath?  If it feels like your life is headed in this direction, join the club! But seriously, that Calgon lady had the right idea. Here’s the modern day version in its own little bottle: Happy Mama Body Wash. This delightful bathtime treat may have been designed for expectant moms suffering from queasiness, but it doesn’t mean the rest of us can’t appreciate the invigorating scent of ginger and grapefruit. One squeeze of this stuff in your morning shower, and you’re ready to take on the day…or at least, whatever portion of it before that cup of coffee kicks in. We’re big fans of Earth Mama Angel Baby not just because their products are made with good-for-you organic ingredients, but because it’s important for MOM to have some TLC every now and then.

In a Nutshell: Whether you’re carrying a baby-to-be around or a toting a toddler, a little pick-me-up like this body wash goes a long way to help you de-stress and breathe easily.

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out of this world

We’re always on the lookout for stylish ways to get around town with little ones. The new line of from BabyPlanet is one to road-test, especially now that the warm weather is here. Take your pick from any of the three new additions to the Endangered Species collection–the Giant Panda, the Lemur Frog and the Monarch Butterfly. And then there’s the two timi & leslie branded models, inspired by their ultra chic diaper bag collection. No matter which style you pick, you’ll appreciate standout features like the ergonomically designed handles that are easy to grip and the flip-out sun visor that works in a pinch when that bright glare can be a bit too much. If you opt for the timi & leslie line, you’ll be able to coordinate your stroller with one of their matching diaper bags. How’s that for for being a hip mom?

In a Nutshell: With this wide range of fashionable, easy-fold strollers, strolling with your babe is like a walk in the park.

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Modern Interior

home sweet home

If a man’s home is his castle, then a baby’s home is her sanctuary…at least that what moms would like it to feel like. Think about how less stressed you’d feel if you could sit with your baby in a comfortable glider for her umpteenth feeding of the day, read “Goodnight Moon” under a lamp you wish you could have in your bedroom and settle her down to sleep in bedding that is so stylish, it makes your comforter look like it’s been through the wash one too many times. The Oilo Collection of modern nursery decor and furnishings is one worth checking out. From pillows and crib linens that feature contemporary, bold graphics, to faux leather gliders that are buttery soft, each item in the line is a conversion piece that complements one another perfectly. We’re particularly partial to the bedding, whose clean lines really pop, and come in names that roll right off  the tongue like Raindrops and Cobblestone (are you getting sleepy yet?). While this collection doesn’t come cheaply, consider that these products hail from a high-end design company that knows about creating the right look for your home firsthand.

In a Nutshell: Your little one will feel like a prince (or princess) in a room containing these regal furnishings. And didn’t you always want to be queen anyway?

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moon walking

Who says that only rockers can wear rockin’ duds? We checked out what clothes some of our favorite musicians’ kids are sporting these days, and discovered one thing in common: it’s hip to be little!…Christina Aguilera’s son Max is making tracks with his Thomas the Tank Engine Boots from Western Chief Kids. He was spotted out with Mom making a Petco run earlier this winter in Beverly Hills…Speaking of footwear, Ed Roland of Collective Soul’s son Lennon wears shoes from pedipeds. Wife and mother Michaeline says it’s the only ones she can “easily get on him that actually stay on.” (We hear you, Michaeline;  we know what a tug-of-war getting our kids dressed can be!)  When it comes to dressing up, Victoria Beckham’s son Cruz likes being over the moon—quite literally. The 4-year-old was wearing a Jr. Astronaut ensemble from Aeromax during his brother Romeo’s birthday party (below)…Even when they’re at home, rocker kids are in style. Yes bass guitarist Chris Squire outfitted his daughter Xilan’s nursery with a Bratt Décor Chelsea Lifetime Crib finished in antique silver.

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strap hanger

When I’m out shopping alone (whenever the moon is blue, that is), I’m naturally able to pay more attention to my surroundings. At times, I’ll see a mom walking with her child on a leash and of course, I think to myself, “Isn’t that a better idea for your dog?” While I can appreciate her attempt to keep her unruly child contained (hey, that’s what shopping carts are for), there must be a better way. I like the thinking behind the reisenthel motherchildbag, a reusable shopping bag that features three handles: two for you and one for your child. It’s a great way to hit the store for a few quick items with a young child in tow. What’s really genius is that I can use it as we walk from the store to our car, and not worry that my 5-year-old will be unattended as we cross the busy parking lot. Plus, it’s inconspicuous enough that I don’t have to inspire pity from childless onlookers.

In a Nutshell: Running in the grocery store for a few things with your kid? This shopping accessory will keep you from spilling the beans and keeping your little one closeby. The Motherchildbag will be available later this month.

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carried away

Ready to get super-close to your baby? There are two new soft carriers on the market that will make you want to scoop her up and snuggle her inside one of them. Living up to its name, the FreeHand Baby Carrier (left) distinguishes itself from other carriers by the fact that you can position your baby however you’d like–facing in or out, wearing her on your frontside or back–without the need for any inserts, straps or adjustments. How is that possible? The carrier has built-in crossover support, so you can wear your baby in any position and she’ll be able to fit securely (that means no floppy heads, especially for little babes). If you have a toddler who will still happily ride in a carrier (lucky you!), you’ll want to check out the BabyBjorn Comfort Carrier (below) which features an adjustable, ergonomic waist belt that distributes your child’s weight across your hips. It’s designed to fit a child up to age 2 or 31 lbs., so you can enjoy snuggling close even longer now.

In a Nutshell: Savor those oh-too-fleeting moments of bonding with your baby with these soft carriers. The FreeHand Baby Carrier will be in stores sometime this month, while the BabyBjorn Comfort Carrier will be available in April.

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getting a bigger boost

You can’t be too safe when it comes to traveling with your kids, especially in the car. If you are looking for the latest development in car seat safety, you’ve found it: Britax is enhancing its line of convertible booster seats with the Frontier 85, a combination booster seat that offers the greatest height and weight capacity currently available. Now, your child can weigh up to 85 lbs. and be 20 inches high (in a seated shoulder position) when secured with a 5-point harness. When using the belt-positioning booster, those numbers jump up to 120 lbs. and 65 inches. What does all that mean to you? Your child can remain in his safety seat longer–perhaps much to his chagrin, but as parent, you know that safety always comes first. Frontier 85 offers tremendous versatility, with 10 harness and 3 buckle strap positions. You’ll also appreciate those little extras like the no-re-thread harness and the color-coded belt guides (if you’re like me when it comes to figuring out  gear, a little ‘cheat sheet’ that can get my kids buckled up and ready to go faster is a big plus.)

In a Nutshell: We’re just plain “wowed” by the Frontier 85’s functionality. Anything that keeps our kids safe and secure gets our attention in a big way. Look for this Britax car seat in stores later this month.

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