Tuesday, November 9, 2010
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
To guarantee delivery of finished Dimples items before the holidays we recommend that online orders be placed by November 15. Fingerprint impressions should be received at Dimples by December 1st. Additional shipping fees can be added to have the kit and/or finished piece shipped by UPS. Otherwise Dimples kits make excellent Christmas gifts and then the impressions can be taken on Christmas Day!
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Saturday, October 16, 2010
"Here's how it works: WE OFFER MORE THAN ONE DEAL A DAY! We just do it one deal at a time. We don't list items at a certain time of the day, it's very random, mysterious and completely unplanned what products we will feature and when they will feature. You need to keep checking back throughout the day to find new deals, once one is gone, you will see another new deal immediately after! Most days you will see anywhere between 2-10 deals during the entire 24 hour period of time, so it pays to keep checking back. You snooze, you lose - you don't want to miss out on something, so be sure to refresh your browser, or follow us on twitter or facebook, you will see updates on these pages whenever a new item pops up, and remember, this will happen more than one time every day! "
Happy Shopping Mama's!
Thursday, September 30, 2010
The Children's Trunk Show assembles the most fresh, fun and quality-conscious products under one roof -- taking the legwork out of shopping for you discerning parents, indulgent grandmas, and savvy gift-givers. Their emphasis is on apparel, art, and accessories for kids, but you’ll also find housewares,treats for mom, and lots of other family fare. With onsite daycare and a hostof grown-up indulgences, it’s more than a sale—it’s an event! So bring your kids, meet friends, and make a day of it.Visit www.childrenstrunkshow.com foran up-to-date schedule of events, including our special guest speakers and details of the Evergreen Brick Works Saturday Farmer's Market.
$10 at the door, a portion goes to SickKids Foundation
Tuesday, September 21, 2010
Wednesday, September 15, 2010
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
We haven't all decided what our girls are going to dress up as this year but stay tuned for more details as the day gets closer!
Thursday, September 2, 2010
The Little Baby Steps podcast is now available on Stitcher! If you haven't heard of this site yet, you should definitely check it out. It allows you to stream podcasts directly to your computer or through your mobile device! You can listen any time, anywhere. No wires, no synching. It works on your iPhone, your Palm, Android phones and even your BB. Once you're there, please make sure to leave us a comment :) Enjoy the show(s)!
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Little Baby Steps is pleased to bring you a coupon for $10 off your custom jewelry order from Dimples Forever. Simply use the discount code LBS17 when you check-out.
Dimples Forever specializes in Fingerprint jewelry. Fingerprint jewelry allows you to take an impression of a loved one, newborn infant to mature adult! That fingerprint jewelry, a moment in time permanently preserved in a pure silver charm, can be worn and enjoyed each day.
Feel free to share this discount with your friends, family, colleagues, neighbours or people you pass on the street!
Thursday, August 5, 2010
Once you get to www.uddercovers.com, click on "Shop Now" and select the cover you would like. Type Breastfeeding into the promo code box and it will bring your product total to $0. All you pay is the shipping fees. You can use the code more than once you just have to open a new browser window to do so.
You can also use this promo code to get a 3 piece gift set for only $5!
Only 2 days left, take advantage of this amazing offer :)
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
If you have any comments or experiences to share, please provide your feedback - we would love to hear from you. In this episode we talk about:
- foods to introduce
- organic vs. non-organic food
- introducing solids while maintaining breast milk/formula
- ways to prepare homemade baby baby
- freezing/storing baby food
- feeding your baby on the go
Most books and resources now say that you can introduce your baby to solids from age 4-6 months however your baby will give you signs that they are (or aren't) ready. If your baby is pushing the spoon out of their mouth with their tongue and it appears that they don't know what to do, it may be a bit early for them. However, this is a new experience for your little one so a little bit of confusion and awkwardness will ensue.
While introducing solids, there are many signs to watch for - namely allergies and digestive issues. Most physicians recommend that you introduce food one at a time, and offer it to your baby for 3 consecutive days. If there are no signs of allergic or digestive issues, you can add this to your 'safe' list and introduce a new food. To offer some variety, I would offer a new food while still offering the 'safe' food because if there were any issues, it was likely caused by the new food. Also, if your baby is refusing a certain food - leave it, and come back to it later. They say that you need to introduce a food approx. 10 times before you can determine that your baby doesn't like it.
Here you can see that Sienna wasn't so sure about kiwi the first time she had it, but after re-introducing it again at a later time, she now loves it!
Most people, including the 5 of us started our babies with infant cereal. The easiest cereal and most common that people will start with is rice cereal. As Jenny learned, this gave Taylor some serious constipation and was only relieved with the use of an infant suppository that they picked up at the drug store under the guidance of the pharmacist. Sienna also had constipation issues when introducing rice and Selin then introduced prunes which helped alleviate any issues for Sienna. Ashley however, didn't have any issues with the rice cereal. I was forewarned however that rice cereal may have caused some constipation while oat cereal may have made her stools loose. These are normal reactions to new food and therefore, introducing solids can be a bit of a juggling act.
We all chose to make our own baby food and found that it was easy, cost effective and gave us the confidence that we knew exactly what was in the food we served. In this episode we talked about how we prepared baby food - bake, roast, steam - puree and serve (or freeze if you've made ample food to keep you going for a few days). Even though we chose to make our own food, there is nothing wrong with buying jarred baby food; and there are some foods that we do offer from the jar - because they are more convenient for travel and/or it's a finicky type of food that we just didn't have any desire to make at home (ie: prunes).
In this episode, we also talked a bit about organic vs. non organic food for your baby. This is a personal decision that everyone should explore for themselves. Buy local and in-season where you can as this will greatly benefit your baby's taste bud development and will help them appreciate texture.
- Top 12 Foods to Buy Organic: http://organic.wonderhowto.com/blog/top-12-foods-buy-organic-0115802/
Happy Baby- "The organic guide to baby's first 24 months" by Dr. Robert W. Sears and Amy Marlow. The link to it is: http://www.happybabyfood.com/our-products/our-book
Wholesome baby food - http://www.wholesomebabyfood.com/
Phil & Ted's portable highchair - this nifty little gadget attaches to any chair and acts as a high chair on the go.
Baby Cubes - easy to use, BPA free plastic cubes to store and freeze your baby food.
Svan High Chair - this is an exceptional high chair that grows with your child. http://www.svanusa.com/svanchair.cfm
Kiddopotomus Tiny Diner: Easily suctions to any table - great for restaurants or taking on the go to protect your baby from germs. http://www.kiddopotamus.com/p_tiny.php
The Safe Sippy: A wonderful light-weight, stainless steel sippy cup to help transition your baby from bottle to cup. We LOVE the safe sippy. http://www.kid-basix.com/thesafesippy.php
Wednesday, July 7, 2010
Dimples fingerprint jewelry kits enable you to easily capture the fingerprint impression of a loved one, newborn infant to mature adult, wherever and whenever you want to! That fingerprint, a moment in time permanently preserved in a pure silver fingerprint jewelry charm, can be worn and enjoyed each day. Check out www.dimplesforever.com to learn more and start shopping!
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
Hello, Bonjour, G'day, Hola, Guten Tag and Buon Giorno!
In this episode of Little Baby Steps we sat down with Isabel Tremblay again to chat about her experiences in raising a bilingual baby. When you listen to the podcast, you can hear Isabel's French roots so it's no surprise that she's speaking French to Estelle.
Selin is speaking Turkish with her baby Sienna and Rita speaks Greek with Aria, however they primarily speak English while introducing a little bit of a second language.
Isabel's mother tongue is French and learned English when she was 17, so instinctively she speaks exclusively in French with Estelle. This can be difficult when they are around non-French speaking people because not everyone will understand what Isabel is saying to Estelle, however it's very important for Estelle's development to identify one person with one language. Isabel's husband speaks Italian and English however he speaks only in English to Estelle. Isabel teaches Estelle through reading, demonstration and speaking to her in French. She has done a lot of research in the area of language development and brain wiring and expects that Estelle may speak a little bit later than her peers to give her brain time to catch up to both languages.
Estelle attends an English daycare (as it's hard enough to get into a daycare, let alone a French daycare!) but will attend an exclusively French school when the time comes.
For anyone trying to raise a bilingual child, Isabel recommends that one parent associated with one language and the other parent associated with the other language. This helps the child identify one parent to one language and to be consistent.
If you are raising your child to speak in multiple languages, please share your feedback and tips with us! For more resources, check your local book store to find books on French language skills and be sure to listen to Isabel's interview here:
PS. be sure to listen until the very end as Taylor has something very important to share with everyone!
In this episode, our Mommy-Sentials focus on reading. Here are a few of our favorite books that we're reading to our little one's right now:
- The very hungry caterpillar
- I love you forever (it's a real tear jerker!)
- Dogs (touch & feel book)
- Wiped by Rebecca Eckler - she talks about "the first year" in a very open and honest way
Friday, May 7, 2010
In this episode, we interviewed Isabel Tremblay - a new mom that we met in our New Mom's group. Isabel has already ventured back to work and introduced her daughter Estelle to a daycare enviroment so we wanted to sit down with her and get some advice since we'll be going back to work soon (sniff sniff).
Isabel was in a unique position where she started a new job when she was 3 months pregnant so the fact that was only able to work for 6 months before her maternity leave, factored into her decision to return to work in January; when Estelle was 6 months old. In Canada, we are very fortunate to have 12 month maternity/parental leave compared to the US and Europe where the government only allows 6 weeks maternity leave. With that in mind, Isabel felt that a 6 month maternity leave was sufficient for both Estelle and her career.
Given that Estelle was only 6 months old when she went into a daycare environment, Isabel was able to provide a complete schedule for Estelle's care: from feeding, to napping, to diaper creams etc. Isabel hasn't noticed any negative impact from daycare - Estelle is thriving and getting lots of attention from the daycare providers.
Not an overly emotional person, Isabel didn't sit in the daycare parking lot and cry her face off (I hope I can say the same!). However, she returned to work on a Thursday so that Estelle had 2 days at daycare and was then able to spend the weekend at home again before returning the following week. She did however have a "moment" before Estelle began daycare when she realized that this was the last time that she was putting Estelle down for her afternoon nap etc.
In terms of illness - we often hear that kids in daycare are always sick. Isabel weighed in on this by sharing that in the first 3 months Estelle was only sick once! Way to go Estelle. However, over the past few weeks Estelle did come down with a little bug but this is to expected. Fortunately Isabel has a good relationship with her employer as she had to take time off in order to stay home with Estelle.
Fortunately Isabel hasn't run into any issues with Estelle having separation issues but if you find yourself in this situation, try to alternate the person who drops the child off and the person who picks up the child.
Isabel and her husband both really cherish their "family time" - even more so now that they are both working. A natural extroverts, they have found themselves turning down dinner dates and social engagements in lieu of spending time as a family ... and they love it! They are happy to trade their late nights for early mornings because it means that they can maximize their family time on weekends.
Isabels advice for parents returning to work: be sure to get yourself organized. The mornings are more challenging than evenings, so ensure that you can establish a routine that works for you, your hubby and baby. All three of you need to be dressed, fed, groomed and out the door! It's a definite team effort.
Listen to the full interview with Isabel, including her tips for parents returnig to work:
Thursday, May 6, 2010
Monday, May 3, 2010
We ventured out to High Park at the crack of dawn this morning to have our photos taken by Kimberly Dunbar. The forecast called for rain and we were about to cancel but then the sun came out and we were good to go! The girls were all dolled up and on their best behaviour :)
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Monday, April 26, 2010
Listen to the complete interview here:
With respect to parenthood and getting your home ready, there’s no doubt you’ll have to make room for a new baby. Perhaps you need to create baby’s room in what is now the home office. That means transitioning the office to another area of the home and creating a welcoming room for baby.
Clare can plan and maximize the space so that it’s functional and comfortable to be in. After understanding your preferences, Clare will guide you as to what should be in the room and where should it go.
Next, Clare suggests having your hospital bag ready a few weeks in advance even if you’re planning a home birth. This will give you peace of mind that everything you need is clean, organized and ready to go!
How does organization benefit Moms?
Have you ever noticed how much “stuff” a little baby comes with? Clare spoke with us about how to plan your space so that you’re maximizing your time and maintaining an efficient process. Each new activity or process such as feeding the baby, changing the baby, bathing the baby, etc. has multiple steps associated with it. These include planning, performing and cleaning up afterwards.
Clare identifies the process and recognizes the key elements that need to be grouped together. For example, changing the baby requires a change table, wipes, diapers, vaseline/diaper cream, and diaper pail for starters. These items should be within arms reach so that you’re attentive to your baby at all times. How else will you use the change table? Perhaps you will use it to dress the baby, apply lotions after bath time, etc. so you need to think beyond the initial activity and ensure that you have everything you need within close proximity.
How do you manage guests?
In the early days, don’t be afraid to speak up and set boundaries on your time. Outline the expectations of your guests and let them know that you may need to step out of the room or cut your visit short for any given reason. If guests offer to bring something – let them! Also, having some ready-made goodies and snacks on hand is helpful so that you have something to offer guests without much fuss. TIP: Add some hand sanitizer on the counter/entry way so that it’s readily available to guests without creating a parade to the bathroom sink.
How do you organize the baby’s closet for a range of sizes? Should you organize clothing by sizes, colours or seasons?
In many homes, closet real estate is scarce. In baby’s room Clare suggests that the prime real estate should be reserved for clothes that are actually being worn at any given time and grouped by size. If you receive clothing in bigger sizes, pack those away or put them in the bottom drawers. TIP: When a baby is between sizes, take a onesie that fits your child now and use this as a measuring guide when shopping for baby clothes. This will help you avoid buying clothes that are either too small or too big.
Is it better to hang clothes or to use drawers?
Hanging vs. folding really depends on your space and gender (girls often hang more items because of dresses whereas boys usually require more drawers). Drawers should be organized by size and type of clothing. In your closet, it’s advisable to add shelves inside the closet if possible, either with built-in or a hanging organizer, as this will give you greater flexibility and maximize your space.
Use containers to group like items: Shoe boxes or organizing bins that can be pulled out easily will save you time from rooting around for items. When thinking about how to store something, ask yourself “how do I want to find it?” and this will guide you to the correct storage solution.
What is the best way to organize our children’s toys?
As toys vary by age, it’s important to find a storage container that suits the size and function of the toys. Avoid lumping all toys together in one large container as you’ll never find the missing puzzle piece under a pile of stuffed animals.
Other Tips and Suggestions from our expert:
Board books – normally you have books on a shelf, but this is not practical for little children. Clare suggests putting them in a shallow basket so that children can easily access them.
Baby Room – the most under utilized space is the back of closet door. This is great space for an organizer! You can choose from a pocket or drawer style which extends from the door but still allows you to easily open/close the door.
Organizing Drawers by using smaller containers is a minor investment with a big return. Save your old shoe boxes and decorate them yourself with paper so that you can put them on display. (This would be a great craft project for children!). Ikea has several containers in varying sizes and materials, with or without lids etc.
At the end of each segment we are happy to share our "Mommy-Sentials" with you:
Tidy Toy Labels – http://www.happyhelperz.com/
These simple picture and sight word cards enable a child, of any age, to put away their own toys. This organizational tool helps children learn sorting, classifying and early reading skills; while at the same time teaching them how to tidy-up after themselves.
Family/Mommy Calendar – this tool helps your family manage their time more effectively as it clearly illustrates activities and appointments for all parties in your home (parents, children, care-givers, and even your pets!).
Spring Cleaning – Many moms will hang on to baby clothes if they are expecting another child but as you pack your clothing away for storage, separate it by gender and only hang on to what’s important. Give your gently used items to charity where possible, whether it is Value Village, Good Will, or Pillage in the Village etc. The Canadian Diabetes Association will even come and pick it up for you! To learn more, visit http://www.diabetes.ca/get-involved/supporting-us/clothesline/
Thursday, April 22, 2010
Nursing bras are available in 32A all the way to 50M?! Yes, M!
Pictured here: Rita & Aria, Selin & Sienna, Sarah (owner of Evymama)
holding a K bra, and Karen & Ashley holding the infamous M bra.
From sleep bras, comfort bras, and even your sexiest lace and diamond embellished bras (with matching panties of course) they have it all. The same holds true for maternity clothing. Evymama carries something for everyone whether it be yoga wear, swim wear, blue jeans, dresses or a complete corporate uniform you're sure to find something to suit the needs of your inner-diva.
Once we stepped into Evymama we immediately realized this was not your ordinary maternity store. We were presently surprised by the quality and vast selection of fashionable maternal wear. Most women believe that once their pregnant they must resort to the typical baggy shirt and loose pants ensemble. Evymama is everything but. Don’t be foolish by wasting your time and money in buying clothes that aren’t right for your body, this will leave you with two wardrobes. Sarah suggests sticking to your pre-pregnancy size when buying clothes.
Not only does Evymama speciazlize in maternity clothing but also their employees are trained in lactation management. Come in, stop by have a look around and/or get some helpful advice on breastfeeding. Evymama is a strong supporter of La Leche League whom assist mothers worldwide to breastfeed through mother-to-mother support. Karen had contacted them when she was having her own breastfeeding issues and found that they had great advice to offer her. Be sure to speak to an IBCLC (international board certified lacataction consultant) for all your breastfeeding needs in order to ensure the proper advice.
Evymama is located at 266 Jane Street in the lovely Toronto neighbourhood of Bloor West Village. Check out Evymama on the web at www.evymama.ca. There you will be able to browse through their complete inventory of maternal wear. However one bra you just have to see in person is the un-imaginable size “M” over shoulder boulder holder Bra.
We hope that the information we shared with you today about nursing wear will help assist you make the “BREAST” choice!
The brand new Cache Coeur "Lisa" nursing bra with underwire pairs beautifully with the new "Lisa" thong, french knicker or bikini. Soft grey vintage and pink satin and french lace.
Cache Coeur breastfeeding and maternity lingerie from France is beautiful, practical, and innovative. Soft, sumptuous French lace, and gorgeous detailing to add beauty to the happiest days of your life! Nighties, bras and camisoles have clever magnetic clips for nursing to make your life easier.
The jet black lace and microfibre of this new HOTmilk bra are decadently lined with a deep purple cotton, giving a richness and depth to the overall colouring. Embellished with a jet satin bow and diamante drop at the centre front, this set is exquisite. This bra provides excellent support without wire, and has easy, one handed nursing clips, and 6 hooks at the back to accommodate changes during pregnancy and after baby is born. Cups are fully lined with soft cotton.
Bella Materna ‘Anytime’ - Evymama's favourite Maternity & Nursing Bra offers the best support available without underwire! Easy pull-aside nursing access. This bralet is great for your last trimester and is a perfect first nursing bra! Wide set adjustable straps & ballet back give you great support and a sexy silhouette. 4-stage hook and eye closure at center back. Crafted in the USA from cool and quick drying Imported Italian Meryl, the fabric won’t fade or pill.
Mother love herbal company – Motherlove's best selling product for safely and effectively increasing breast milk. This product does not contain any milk, dairy, soy, egg, fish, shellfish, tree nuts, peanuts, wheat, or gluten.
Monday, April 19, 2010
I didn't plan to bottle feed Ashley. I had all of the best intentions to breastfeeding her for the first 8-10 months however I had a lot of issues. I'll be the first to tell you that breastfeeding is not as natural as you may think. I had a c-section and it was almost 8 days before my milk actually came in - which I thought was a long time, however I have since learned that this is normal. But those 8 days were the most excrutiating of my life - I was blistered, cracked, bruised and bleeding while trying to feed Ashley. I was beyond stressed out and was in tears every time she wanted to feed which is not healthy for you or your baby. So, after 2 and a half weeks, I decided to switch to formula and had a huge weight lifted off my shoulder. My baby was happy, she was gaining weight, and I was much more at ease.
In those first few days, I was also tube feeding Ashley in the hospital since she wasn't gaining enough weight. Erin had a similar experience in the hospital as Emme was born prematurely. Emme had a nose tube and Erin had to save each diaper so that the nurses could check the weight to ensure that Emme was eating enough. However Erin was fortunate that Emme was able to make the switch from nose tubes and finger feeding to being breastfed.
As all of the girls will attest - you need to do what's right for you! A happy mom is a happy baby. The ladies weighed in on some of the benefits and highlights that we've found with both breastfeeding and bottle feeding. In our case, all of the girls are beautiful and healthy and hitting all of their milestones.
- Nutrition - this is the best source of nutrients for your baby however we are not nutritional experts so we can't comment entirely. However, formula has come a long way - the formula that I give Ashley is Nestle Good Start with Omega 3 and 6 (which breastfed babies don't necessarily receive from breast milk)
- Burning Calories - breastfeeding moms burn LOTS of calories while breastfeeding!
- Convenience - a breastfeeding mother will always have a supply of food for their baby no matter where they are
- Bond - there's a very special bond between a mother and baby during the breastfeeding experience
- No cost
Bottle (Formula) Feeding:
- Nutrition - see above. Formula has come a long way.
- Bond - bottle feeding your baby gives others the opportunity to bond with the baby as well. In our case, my husband was able to feed Ashley during the night which allowed me to catch up on some much needed sleep while being able to bond with her.
- Cost Effective - based on Ashley's consumption in the first few months it was approx. $5/day for her formula
- Sleep - babies who are formula fed tend to sleep a bit longer than breastfed babies as formula keeps babies fuller for a longer period of time
- Nipple confusion - there's a lot of talk about nipple confusion but I don't think there's anything official that says it actually exists. In the hospital, the pediatrician told me that the only statement published on that topic is that "there is no concrete evidence for or against the notion of nipple confusion"
Again, you need to do what's right for you. Here is a interesting article from Canadian Family that certainly hit home for me, Sticking Up for Baby Formula: http://www.canadianfamily.ca/articles/article/-side-bottle-feeding/
Some other tips from the moms:
- If you're having difficulty with breastfeeding seek help. It's likely that your local hospital has a lactation consultant who can offer support/resources. If not, La Leche League is a very reputable service.
- At the very least, try to give your baby the colostrum - your liquid gold which is the most nutritious form of breast milk. It's the first stage of breastmilk before your milk actually comes in
- Try to periodically introduce your baby to a bottle with breast milk or formula to assist with the transition from boob to bottle when the time comes
As someone once said to me "There's no special spot in heaven for mothers who breastfeed, so if you're bottle feeding ... it's OK!".
At the end of each segment we are happy to share a "Mommy-Sential" with you:
- Baby Wrappers - www.babywrappers.com - Wash Cloth Mit
- Mally Bibs - http://www.mallybibs.com/ - Leather Bibs with Magnetic Closures
- Baby D Drops
- The Breast Experience, Breastfeeding Clinic in Brampton (if you would like more information on this service, please contact us)
- Breast Pads - there are several brands available to help with leakage, over-active let down etc.
- The Breast Friend Pillow - http://www.mybrestfriend.com/ - an excellent nursing pillow that straps on so that you are not fussing with the position of the pillow when trying to nurse your wee one.
Thursday, April 8, 2010
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
Friday, March 26, 2010
We learned that there are many types of cloth diapers: pre-folds (a folded cotton liner with an exterior pant), all-in-ones (a diaper that takes your baby from birth to toilet training), and even hemp and bamboo diapers. The reasons why many people opt to cloth diaper their baby is environmental and to keep chemicals found in disposable diapers away from their babies' tushies. While the average parent will purchase 5000 diapers for one child, you only need to buy about 30 all-in-one cloth diapers that can then be used for the next one(s).
As Susan pointed out, many parents feel daunted by the extra laundry and care needed in cloth diapering; however, she said it is as easy or as hard as you choose to make it. She recommends buying one or two of a couple of brands to see what works best for your baby. Also, a proper demonstration of how particular cloth diapers work is essential for choosing the right brand and size for your baby.
For a list of cloth diaper brands at Diaper-eez, check out Susan's website at http://www.diaper-eez.com/, and stop by the store at 2309 Bloor Street West in Toronto for a consultation with a member of her knowledgeable staff.
This week Karen and Rita were unable to make the podcast due to surgery and sleep deprivation, respectively.
Erin was wowed by Supper Solved. She found the supper assembling experience easy and the food tasted great. Best of all, they clean up after you.
Jenny really liked the Funny Face Mirror from Skip* Hop. It's a plush farmyard friend with a mirror as the face. It easily velcros to a stroller to keep your little one entertained. Thanks, Susan - the girls' love it!
Selin's Mommy-Sential is Kimberly Dunbar Photography. Kimberly specializes in maternity, baby, child, and family photography. She will be at the Baby Time Show in Toronto from April 30th - May 2nd, so check out her booth.
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
Jenny started getting out of the house by taking the dog, Kuma, for a walk. This forced her to get out of the house and realize that it's not such a big scary world out there.
Selin was fortunate to have Erin as a neighbour. As you know, Erin had Emme a few weeks prior to Sienna's arrival so they leaned on each other for support and motivation to get out of the house.
Alas, we all joined "The New Moms Group" at St. Joseph's Hospital in Toronto. This is where Jenny and I met the rest of the ladies and the "mommy posse" was born. We met at the hospital once a week for 6 weeks to discuss all things baby. It was a great outlet to talk about our new feelings, the highs and lows, new responsibilities and things to expect. At the very least, we knew we were never alone. . Our facilitator brought in guest speakers to share information such as baby massage, nutrition and breastfeeding. And best of all, it was FREE, so we had nothing to lose and everything to gain.
Aside from a new moms group, there are tonnes of activities and groups for moms with babies! Some additional mom & baby activities include:
- Movies for Mommies/Stars & Strollers
- Mommy & Baby Yoga
- Baby Salsa
- Stroller Fit Classes
- Ontario Early Years
- Chapters - Reading Time
- Kindermusik/Baby Music Classes
- Swimming - check your City Park & Recreation Dept.
In addition to groups and activities, we all suggest getting some normalcy back into your life by having a friend or family member babysit for a few hours so that you can go for dinner with your hubby, go to the gym, get your hair done or get a manicure (a cheap and cheerful pick-me-up!). In the early days though, don't be too ambitious - don't plan an entire weekend away in the beginning - take "baby steps" and build up to it. As Jenny mentioned, breastfeeding moms also need to think about their feeding schedule. For example, she went to a hair appointment and was very clear that she only had 1 hour when she factored in her travel time etc.
Once you've met some other moms, indoor playdates will become a great outlet for you. You gain adult conversation and the babies learn to interact with each other.
The bottom line is this: you can be as active or inactive with the baby as you want but it's important to do something - anything.:::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::::
At the end of each episode, we will share our "MOMMY-SENTIALS" with you.
- Stars & Strollers at Cineplex Odion Theatres. Check them out in your area. - http://www.cineplex.com/Theatres/StarsAndStrollers.aspx
- Baby Yoga/Mom & Baby Exercise
- New Moms Group - check into the Childbirth & Parenting services at your local hospital. If they don't have one, they will probably know of some in the area.
- Ontario Early Years Centre
Thursday, March 4, 2010
First of all, you need to set some boundaries with respect to visitors, both in the hospital and once you've come home. Be firm and clear. We strongly suggest that you ensure you take the time for you, your husband/partner and the baby. You will never get that time back so be sure to the time when you can.
It was evident throughout our discussion that many of us had help from our own mothers - whether it be cleaning the house, walking the dog, taking care of laundry or cooking meals, we all have a new found appreciation and respect for our mothers. The biggest help we all received was help for us and household chores, not necessarily helping with diapers and such. I know for me personally, my mom gave me the confidence to go out with the baby. I was scared in the first few weeks to take her out in public: what if she cried, what if people are looking at me etc and I knew that I had my mom there to support me which was a huge relief.
Aside from family and friends, there are additional support systems available such as Public Health Nurses as well as your midwife - they provide excellent post-natal care as required.
We all shared some laughs as we discussed our expectations vs our reality. Selin & Jenny planned to acquire certifications for work, be out with friends, have a clean house and dinner on the table every night. Oh, how quickly we learned that this was not the case! Erin had an excellent - and realistic - tip for everyone: set mini goals for yourself each day. These may be as simple as having a shower or making your bed, or being more adventurous and trying to go for a walk or get groceries with your little one in tow.
So, this is our new job 24-7. In the early days of bringing Taylor home, Jenny wanted to go back to work. The workplace was comfortable, familiar and more importantly, it ended at 5pm. And let's not forget that while we were working in the home all day, our hubby's were in the workplace and had a long day too. But yes, there is still a hint of jealousy that they got to leave the house and be at work for the day!
Tip when expecting guests!
If you're expecting company, ask them to call the morning of your visit date to ensure that its still OK. You may have a great day and schedule a visit but things quickly change and you could have a horrible night and not be up for a visit the following day.
At the end of each episode, we will share our "MOMMY-SENTIALS" with you.
- Baby Time Show - April 30th - May 2nd @ the International Centre, Hall 1 in Toronto. Visit http://www.babytimeshows.ca/ for more information.
- Crockpot - in the first few weeks home, the crock pot can be your best friend. Pop something in and get on with your day. See below for a quick and yummy recipe :)
- Hooded Towels - this cozy towels are perfect for bundling up your little one after their bath
- Bravado Nursing Bra's - Erin swears that these are the best nursing bra's out there!
- Baby Bottom Salve by Earthly Essentials - we all use this on our babies, and love it. It's a purely organic product and a little goes a long way! Check www.earthlyessentials.ca for more information.
Sunday, February 28, 2010
Things to add:
- Stroller-Research what type is best suited for you, some good features to look for are cup holder, sun guard, rain cover, good size basket and remember try out the stroller as much as possible.
- Car seat- Check weight limit and make sure it fits with your stroller
- Swing- Some are bigger than others, be mindful of space in your home
- Pack N' Play- Good to have when traveling, this item can be bought new or used
- Crib set- We found this item nice but not necessary especially at the beginning you just need a fitted crib sheet
- Mobile- Can use up until six month's of age, Rita mentioned that baby Aria has one that projects onto the ceiling
- Baby furniture- Crib, bassinet, dresser/change table(Rita and Selin were able to find used dressers on kijiji)
- Mattress- Erin mentioned a plastic cover that encases the mattress, mandatory in New Zealand for the reduction of SIDS
- Rocking chair- Invest in a comfortable one
- Monitor- Many different ones to choose from some are just audio, some have video which Selin has, and others measure the baby's heartbeat
- Diaper bag
- Nursing pillow- test out size and firmness, as Rita discovered the pillow she has was too big!
- Baby D drops- very good idea to have before baby
- Some low cost items to have on your registry: cloths, diapers, creams, hangers, wedges for sleeping, baby care kit, bottles(starter kit level 1), sterilizer kit, brush set, bath tub, sun shade and mirror for the car, change pad cover, diaper genie, nursing pads, play mats(large one)
- Other things that could be optional for your registry- high chair, humidifier, baby carrier, Brest pump, cloth diapers, nursing bras (get fitted), nursing cover
We all would recommend researching and knowing what products are on the market as it can be very overwhelming to choose the right gear for you and your baby.
The Baby Shower...
Between the five of us we all had different types of baby showers. Selin had the more traditional shower on a Sunday afternoon with the ladies as did Karen and Erin's husband due to Emme's early arrival. Erin also had a co-ed work shower and a BBQ book shower (everyone had to bring a book) after Emme was born. As for myself we had a baby party, lots of yummy food, friends of both genders and no games. Each of us had a different experience but all had the same goal to celebrate the arrival of a new family member.
At the end of each episode, we will share our "MOMMY-SENTIALS" with you.
Pippalily diaper clutch- So cute they'll think it's a purse! Interior pocket perfect for credit card and lip gloss http://www.pippalily.com/
Hydrasense Nasal Spray- Children under two don’t have the ability yet to blow their nose, which means bacteria, viruses, pollen and dust build up in nasal mucus and stay trapped. This accumulation can cause complications such as sinusitis and problems with breathing.
clinically proven, hydraSense® Ultra-Gentle Mist nasal spray gently cleanses tiny noses blocked by colds and allergies to help your baby breathe more easily. Made with isotonic 100% natural-source seawater, its salinity is perfectly balanced with the body. http://www.hydrasense.ca/
Mommy Hook- is the perfect stroller hanger. Built to last, lightweight and versatile, it fits virtually all stroller handles. The Mommy Hook is made from durable, heavy-duty aluminum—it won’t break like cheap plastic hangers. Its unique rubber grip keeps it from sliding. Use The Mommy Hook on your stroller. Use it on your shopping cart. Just snap it on and you’re ready to roll! http://www.themommyhook.com/
Baby Cubes- is the only product on the market that has a lid attached directly to each cube for a hassle free and convenient way too prepare and store baby food. http://www.babycubes.com/
Canada Goose Bunting Bag-A Down filled hood with removable coyote fur ruff
Center-front YKK® locking zipper
Storm flap behind Center front zipper Front patch pocket with Velcro®.
Child-carrier seat belt pass-through
Recessed elasticized Nylon rib knit cuffs to keep out the cold.
Tuesday, February 23, 2010
Thursday, February 18, 2010
As you can imagine, this was a lengthy discussion with several laughs and groans so we've tried to summarize them as best we can. For the complete podcast, tune in here:
Going to the hospital:
- Be packed and ready to go (this includes Mom, Dad and Baby!). We suggest packing your bag approx. 2-3 weeks in advance of your due date. And ladies - pack your own bag unless you want 3 nightgowns and no toothbrush (right Erin?!). Don't forget to pack for the men too - they will be at the hospital for an extended period of time as well, so they too will need to be packed (pillows, comfy clothes, phone numbers, toothbrush etc)
- Essentials to pack for Mommy: BIG pads, BIG underwear, chapstick, toiletries (toothbrush, brush etc), comfy pants, slippers and a pen (to fill out forms).
- Make sure that your baby car seat is installed! The hospital will check to ensure that you have put the baby in the car seat and have him/her buckled properly before releasing you. (Note: This applies even if you do not have a car. The baby should be in a car seat regardless of the mode of transportation: cab, streetcar, bus etc).
- Think about the right time to ask for your epidural. Once you have it, you will be on a catheter and be stuck in bed. As Selin discovered, she had her epidural as soon as she walked in the hospital and was in bed for 27 hours! However, don't ask for it too late because sometimes your body has progressed too far and you cannot have it, or as Erin & Karen discovered, the anesthetist was not available when we asked for the epidural.
- Check with the nurses re: the availability of the anesthetist. When I (Karen) checked into the hospital they told me that there was only 1 anesthetist on-call after 5pm.
- Once you have the epidural it's common to have chills - which is a welcome relief if you're having a summer baby!
- You will not feel anything which may or may not be a good thing. As Erin mentioned, she loved the empowering feeling she got when she was delivering Emme since she was able to feel her moving through her belly and into the birth canal, whereas Selin didn't feel a thing.
- It's recommended to try and forgo an epidural if your baby is premature
- If your water breaks at home, you'll need to replace the carpet. Both Erin & Jenny experienced the "gush" at home while the rest of us had our water broken in the hospital. When your water breaks, it is just that - a gush ... over and over again.
- Erin was able to use a hypno birthing technique to keep herself calm however this was not as effective as she hoped at being able to breathe Emme down
- As I'm sure many of you know, it's very likely that you won't have your regular OB delivering your baby. In Erin's case, her midwives were present at the birth but acted more in a coaching capacity since Emme was a preemie.
- If your baby needs vacuum assistance to be delivered, ask the nurse to get you "the good vacuum". As Jenny was beginning to push she heard "oh no, we don't have the good vacuum" which is definitely not something you want to hear!
- Of course Ashley had to be "special" and was the only baby among the 5 to be delivered via c-section (obviously she just didn't want to get goop in her hair!)
- My c-section was done by choice despite being in labour for only 5 hours and being fully dilated. Ashley wasn't dropping entirely into the birth canal so to avoid extra stress and fatigue, the c-section was scheduled.
- Recovery from the c-section wasn't as bad as I thought. It was very tender and I was very slow when trying to stand up, sit down or walk. Basically anything that required any kind of abdominal strength was tender and difficult but manageable with help from others.
- I was cut horizontally along my pubic bone and now (almost 8 months later) I have a very faint hairline scar which cannot be seen when wearing a bikini or underwear etc.
- Downside of having a c-section: (1) I wasn't able to hold the baby right away - although on the upside it was a great bonding moment for my hubby and (2) in some cases a c-section will slow down the process of your milk coming in. In my case, I had a lot of difficulty breastfeeding as it took 7 days for my milk to fully "come in".
- One of the biggest fears after birth was having your first BM. We all agreed that we were worried about ripping our incisions whether it was from an episiotomy or c-section. Thank god for the little red pills (stool softeners). All joking aside, the nurses should ensure that you do have a BM before discharging you from the hospital.
- Rita experienced PUPPS rash all over her belly during the last 2-3 weeks of her pregnancy which put her through a lot of pain and discomfort. This ultimately led to her being induced as the rash was becoming unbearable. Interestingly enough, they say that 70% of women who have PUPPS rash during pregnancy are carrying boys, but in Rita's case she had a girl.
- Rita & Selin both opted to have blood cord samples drawn. If you're going to have this done, order your kit approximately 1 month before your expected delivery.
Tips for the Men:
- do NOT breathe on your wife when she is having contractions
- do NOT text message everyone in your contact list while your wife is in labour
- do NOT take pictures of your wife while her face is beat red and squished so tight she feels like her head is going to explode
- Relax ... we know that you feel helpless, but there really is nothing that you can do for us. Believe us when we say that if there is anything we need - we will tell you.
During the podcast we touched on a number of things that may require further explanation and/or research. Below are some links to additional resources that you may find helpful:
To learn more about an episiotomy visit http://www.babycenter.ca/pregnancy/labourandbirth/labour/episiotomy/
For a complete review on the difference between pitocin and oxytocin and the circumstances for each use, visit http://pregnancy.about.com/od/induction/a/pitocindiffers.htm
For more information on your baby's apgar score please visit http://kidshealth.org/parent/newborn/first_days/apgar.html
At the end of each episode, we will share our "MOMMY-SENTIALS" with you.
- Health Pod - http://www.healthpod.ca/ - Recommended by healthcare professionals and guided by the expertise of doctors, each section of HealthPod Baby guides you to track your child’s most vital health and medical information in a clear and concise format.
- Toy Strap by http://www.pippalily.com/ - Attach baby's favourites to the car seat, stroller, shopping cart, wagon etc... to keep them off the ground. Adjustable Velcro strap accommodates literally everything from teethers, sippy cups and our fave - Sophie!
- Lunch Bag/Cooler by http://www.soyoungmother.com/ - Why should kids have all the fun? Use it as a bottle bag for baby, pack your child's drinks and snacks in it, or leave the kids at home and take your lunch with you wherever you go. Need an extra hand? These versatile bags can be snapped onto stroller handlebars or worn in either messenger or backpack style.
- Hooter Hider by http://www.bebeaulait.com/ - Hooter Hiders are the world's most famous patented nursing covers. Invented in 2004, Hooter Hiders have become one of the top must haves for breastfeeding mothers. Featuring a rigid neckline and our signature prints, Hooter Hider Nursing Covers allow you to breastfeed anytime, anywhere, and in style!
We recently posted a poll regarding labour and the results are in: 87% had an epidural, 50% had a natural birth, 37% used forceps, 1% used a vacuum, 1% used a mid-wife, 1% had a c-section and 0 people had a water birth.
Wednesday, February 17, 2010
Burt's Bees and CityLine are running a contest for a chance to win a $2,000 baby room makeover and a year's supply of Burt's Bees products! The contest closes February 28th, 2010, so enter soon!
Friday, February 12, 2010
I especially like that it's packed with special events, community resources and program information that covers the East End, West End and City Wide.
For more information on where you can pick up your copy, visit their website @ www.littlepaper.com and click on Find Us.
Thursday, February 11, 2010
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Our website: www.littlebabysteps.ca
Welcome to the first episode of Little Baby Steps! For complete introductions of our mommies and babies, feel free to visit our website http://www.littlebabysteps.ca/Little_Baby_Steps/About_Us.html
In this segment we discussed the many ways we prepared for the arrival of our baby. From pre-natal classes, OB's and midwives to hyno-birth plans and the newsletters we subscribed to, we all prepared in much the same way. We discovered that there are only so many things you can do to prepare for the unknown but there are a number of excellent books, newsletters and websites available. For a complete list of resources (books, newsletters, websites etc) visit http://www.littlebabysteps.ca/Little_Baby_Steps/Resources.html
So you walk out of the hospital with this tiny bundle ... now what? In this weeks episode we also discussed the items that were critical in those first few days and months as well as those that didn't prove to be very useful. And as you'll see, some items belong in both categories depending on the mom and of course the baby!
Among the favorite "must have" items were: baby bjorn carrier, change table, bouncy chairs, swing, bassinett, and ear thermometer. The reason for our love affair with these items is self explanatory: they made our lives easier, and kept the baby content.
On the "not so useful" list are: coordinated nursery set, bouncy chair, swing, and bath tubs with the molded incline and seat. And, as you can imagine these items were either very expensive for their limited use or were not enjoyed by the baby and therefore were not used.
When looking for gear we suggest that you check out local second hand stores such as Once Upon a Child http://www.onceuponachild.com/ (with locations across Canada and the US), or online at Kijiji (for Canadian shoppers visit http://www.kijiji.ca/ and in the US visit http://www.kijiji.com/). This is a great way to purchase gently used gear and clothing at a fraction of the cost. Each of us have found some great items this way.
You can listen to our podcast by hitting the play button below:
Wednesday, February 3, 2010
The Revue cinema on Roncesvalles, in Toronto continues it's new screening series for parents with new babies.
The experience in the auditorium is baby-friendly, with the volume turned down to protect sensitive ears. And, of course, if your baby cries you’re among friends (though most babies are easily calmed in the darkened theatre). Don’t miss this chance to enjoy recent films from around the world with friends, both big and small, in a baby-friendly environment.
Tickets for Baby & You at The Revue screenings are $7 with your valid membership; children and seniors tickets are $6; and babies under 2 get in for free.
For more information about Baby and You @ the Revue, visit their site: www.revuecinema.ca