The diaper back is often handbag, toybox and tolietry kit in one. Sleep-deprived moms often forget to replenish their bags and there is nothing worse than being left in a lurch without diapers or a change of clothes for your baby. Here’s a checklist of the essential 15 things you should pack in your diaper bag, as well as a few fun surprises.
There are more than a few reasons I am happy I waited until my mid-30’s to have a baby (and a few reasons I am not, but that’s for another post), and when I did give birth at 37 and decided to hit some of the mom-and-baby library groups, it became abundantly clear what exactly had made waiting right for me.
Being a people watcher and an armchair psychologist, I had a good look around. The moms were all younger than me; I wasn’t the oldest, thankfully, due to the grandmother unsuccessfully wrangling her grandchildren to the circle and the elderly librarian trying to grab their attention.
It’s almost as busy at the school as the mall on boxing day. The parents get to find out from Saleema Noon exactly what she’s going to be telling the kids about… body stuff. You know, sex. And parts ‘down there’. WHISPER… Where babies come from. We’ve got her tips for talking about sex with your kids.
What most women take as a first sign of early pregnancy is a missed period but truthfully, there are a few other signs that can be detected earlier than a missed period that could mean you’re pregnant. Keep in mind that these symptoms are generally counted on as reliable indicators of pregnancy but are in no way a guarantee—it’s always best to get tested by your physician. So what are some very early pregnancy signs and symptoms?
The comfort of babies as they grow becomes increasingly important. In their world of exploration and development, they need a diaper that enables them play freely, providing great a fit and stay drier.
Every mother wants to offer their child the very best possible, whether that’s education, extracurricular activities or the food that we put on their plates. Many of us struggle with how to “do it all”. Finding ways to make life easier is essential for every busy parent (and let’s be honest, isn’t every parent busy?)
Mother Hen Organic Baby Food is a great alternative for busy parents who don’t have the time to prepare and puree their own baby food. They come frozen so they don’t have the preservatives that traditional baby food in glass jars often has. All you have to do is thaw and serve.
Mother Hen had their nutritionist, Genevieve Nadeau, share with us some thoughts on different stages of baby nutrition month by month through the first year. She debunked some common baby nutrition myths and gave great tips on how to care for your baby’s nutritional needs.
Mother Hen recently shared their line of organic baby food with one of our writers, Kyla Beyer– mommy to baby Harvey and successful Vancouver entrepreneur. Kyla shared with us her thoughts and Harvey’s reaction to this organic line of frozen baby food.
[pullquote_left][/pullquote_left]It’s no secret that it can be challenging to balance career and motherhood. As a new mom I envisioned making all of my baby’s meals from scratch. Boiling, steaming, chopping, pureeing…I did it all….for a while. And then, when I went back to work, I found myself with less time to prepare healthy meals for my son. I wanted to spend my precious time with him, not in the kitchen. There are plenty of canned baby food products in the market, but once I discovered Mother Hen’s frozen baby food I was delighted. Natural, allergen free, no additives and all their fruits and vegetables are organic. I noticed a big difference in the smell and taste (yes, I tasted them!) of the Mother Hen products when comparing them to canned foods because the flavour and nutrients of their foods is retained due to their freezing process.
The Beginner line of purees are blended to the perfect silky consistency(no matter how I tried, I could not get my homemade carrot purees to be anything but lumpy). The portion sizes are perfect for little ones discovering new tastes, and their containers are free of BPA so they can be safely microwaved.
The Junior line (8 months and up) has great flavours such as Chicken Cacciatore and Lamb with Fruits (inspired by Morrocan cuisine and my son’s absolute favourite). The portion sizes are larger for growing appetites and the variety of flavours help to expand his palate.
My discovery of Mother Hen’s line of baby food has freed up precious time and helped me to find balance in my busy life as mother and career woman.
Thank you to Kyla and baby Harvey for testing and sharing their thoughts on Mother Hen Organic Baby Food and to Mother Hen for sending them food to test.
Kyla Beyer is mother to Harvey and the owner of Limelight Floral Design, a busy boutique floral studio based in West Vancouver. With the help of her fabulous husband she manages to balance it all and still find time to stop and smell the roses.
If you have a friend that’s expecting twins or triplets, it can make for a difficult baby shower; when should it be, what should the theme be and how do you even go about getting presents for multiple babies? As difficult as it may seem, throwing a shower for twins or triplets isn’t much different than throwing a shower for one baby—unfortunately, that isn’t true for the labor part. Here are our twin baby shower ideas.
The Timing—Women expecting multiple babies generally give birth at around 36 or 37 weeks, and often much earlier. But it is much earlier than 36 weeks that women carrying more than one baby begin to feel extremely hormonal, tired and sluggish—the shower should be well before this time, obviously so that the mom can enjoy her shower and have fun. Also, women carrying more babies are more physically progressed in their pregnancy than women carrying only one baby so the longer you wait to throw a shower, the higher the odds the mom-to-be will go into labor or be put on bed rest. To be safe, err on the side of caution and plan a shower for some time between 28 and 32 weeks.
The Theme—Baby showers have such cute themes and with online stores, you can get baby shower paraphernalia for any situation and any theme. If you’re having trouble getting creative, think of things of two that are usually referenced or spoken together. If you know the sexes of the babies, that makes it easier, but if the theme says “twins,” it will be cute no matter the sexes of the babies. Some themes for girl/boy babies could be: Mickey and Minnie, tiaras and crowns or bees and flowers. Ideas for multiple girl babies: stripes and dots, flowers and stripes, sugar and spice or pickles and ice cream—this one has the bonus of being two fabulous colors plus is a stereotypical pregnancy craving. Shower themes for two boy babies could be: sports, cowboys and Indians or snails and puppy dog tails.
The Gift—Obviously, having a shower for multiple babies means that you can’t only give one blanket and a onesie as the parents to be will need multiple sets of everything. For shower gifts for multiple babies, you and the guests may have to get creative with the gifts. People could pool money and get a twin or triplet stroller or give themed baskets of bath-time stuff, bed-time stuff or health care stuff. Alternatively, if the family is set up with everything they will need for the baby, try to have a shower that is a baking party and have people buy and make food to stockpile in the family’s fridge and freezer, or do a diaper drive. Even if a family has all the things they will need for a baby, they will never have enough diapers for multiple babies. You could also do a shower that is only about mom and dad. Have someone give them the promise of child care when everyone has settled in and have someone else give them a dinner out or a half day at the spa.
Planning a shower, no matter the amount of babies, should be fun and a last chance to shower the parents-to-be with gifts, support and love before they welcome their new addition. Whatever you decide to do for gifts, theme or time, ensure it is something the family will be comfortable with and appreciate.
Good for 9 mos and up. It doesn’t get much easier than this. It’s quick, yummy and really good for you and your little one! You know what they say, “an apple a day”! This recipe is great if your little one is starting to eat soft solids and not just pureed foods.
Severe heat can inhibit the safety of babies and children. With global temperatures on a slow march upwards, heat waves such as this are unfortunately likely to become more frequent than their previous once-in-a-lifetime occurence. Some people adore the heat, but babies and children as well as pets and elderly relatives are vulnerable to heat strokes, dehydration and other serious heat-related ailments. Here are some tips on surviving the heat:
- Never, EVER, leave a baby, child or pet in a parked car during hot weather. The temperature inside a parked car can very quickly rise to extreme levels. Children and pets can become extremely over-heated and some have even died when left in a hot car. This tip is therefore very important.
- Make sure babies, children and pets have plenty of water to drink. Heat produces sweat which causes the body to lose vital water. It is very important to replenish the body with water in order to prevent dehydration, which can be very serious.
- Keep babies, children and pets where it is coolest. Find the coolest room in the house, most likely the basement, and spend as much time there as possible. Only go outside unless you are doing water-related activities or if your house gets so hot, it’s cooler in the shade outside. Restrict outdoor exercise, including walking dogs, to cooler evenings. Avoiding the heat is a great reason to spend the afternoon at the air-conditioned library.
- Dress appropriately. Keep babies and children in lightweight, loose fitting clothing. Is your toddler not a fan of clothing? Well, this is a good time to let him get away with his preference for nakedness!
- Hats and sunscreen. If you are outside in the sun at any time, make sure babies, children and yourself have hats and waterproof, high-SPF sunscreen on. Make sure to re-apply it when necessary. If baby is constantly taking his hat off, find a hat that has a Velcro strap that goes under his chin.
- Fans and air conditioners. These are of course, summer-heat standbys. Here’s a good tip: put a bowl of ice in front of a fan. The fan will blow the cooler air around the ice towards you!
- Don’t leave a baby or child to nap in direct sunlight. That tip speaks for itself.
- Utilize water. Cold showers and baths, pools and natural bodies of clean water are of course great. But here’s another tip: fill up a bucket with very cold water and sit with your feet in it. As your blood circulates through your body, it will cool down in your feet and circulate cooler blood throughout your body. I tried this today and it helped a great deal. Just make sure there are no electronics that can fall into it to avoid electrocution.
- Keep cool at night. Have the whole family sleep in the basement if possible. Make sure babies and children are in light clothing, if clothing is necessary, and that they only have a sheet to cover them, if necessary. Open windows, if safe, to ensure plenty of circulation of the slightly-cooler night air. A cold shower or bath before bed can also help.
- Check in on elderly relatives. If elderly relatives live in hot areas, make sure to check with them that they have everything they need to beat the heat. The elderly are very vulnerable to overheating. Sadly, sometimes, it even causes death.
- Be careful of worsening air quality. Heat causes air quality to diminish. Be aware of this and make sure people with respiratory problems, including kids with asthma, are looked after. Try staying inside where the air is a little better.
- Indulge your children in frozen treats. If it’s very hot, the cooling effect of frozen treats can be more important than their sugar content. If you’d prefer a healthy alternative, pick up a popsicle mold and make fruit juice popsicles by filling the mold with fruit juice.
Have you got a tip? Email us at email@example.com (subject: Beat the Heat) with your name, city and tip and we will add your tip to this page!
Here are some signs of overheating to look out for:
*rapid breathing or difficulty breathing
*weakness, dizziness, or fainting
*more tiredness than usual
*confusion or disorientation
If you see these signs in someone help them cool down by removing clothing, having them drink cool (but not ice cold) water, bathing them with cool water and moving them to a cooler area. If they appear seriously listless or disoriented, take them to the emergency room or call 911.
The above signs to watch out for were taken from the Toronto Public Health’s brochure on beating the heat. This brochure also has tips similar to some of the ones above. You can view this brochure here: http://www.toronto.ca/health/heatalerts/pdf/beattheheat.pdf
For more information about the health effects of extreme heat call
Canadian Red Cross Heat Information Line 416-480-2615
Ask any parent about the most difficult part of having a baby and we are willing to bet that SLEEP will be among the top three. Our handy sleep tracker chart can at least help you to figure out when sleep is happening, and if there are any trends towards lengthier slumber! We have a ton of articles on sleep as well if you need some guidance. Baby Sleep Tracker