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Saturday, September 30, 2006
"Little Man The Movie"

This is a movie that every mom should see. Done as a documentary, this movie chronicles the NICU (Neonatal Intensive Care Unit) journey of life partners Nicole Conn and Gwen Baba. They struggle to keep the balance between parenting their two-year old daughter Gabrielle and supporting their micro preemie, who is in the hospital, Nicholas.

If you have never been to the NICU, this movie will be an eye opening experience for you. Every parent that has given birth to a full term, healthy baby should experience the secret world of the NICU at least once.

My girlfriend found this movie on Rogers-on-demand and watched it a few weeks ago. After watching it she called me and told me how moved she was. Although she did have the oppurtunity to visit our son in the NICU, he was already 4lbs and almost out of danger. Seeing what we experienced, through the movie, made her realize how intense day to day life is when your child is born early.

Just watching the video on the movie's website brought back all of the nervousness I felt when our child was born.

Little man is a must see. Get a box of kleenex - you're going to need it!!

You may have to do some looking around in order to find this movie. Rogers on demand is no longer showing it and I couldn't seem to find it at Blockbuster or Rogers video store.

The official website has it available for purchase if you still have no luck.

Little Man the Movie Official site


Sleeping Beauty

Photo sent to me by Vickie...Tks!!


Friday, September 29, 2006
Bugaboo By Bas Kosters

Bugaboos are very popular. They come in pink, blue, green, yellow, and red. Basically every colour of the rainbow. When you are at the mall you can be sure to see one, if not a few. This is one you will probably never see.

There are only 1000 of these bugaboo's in production. This stroller was designed specially by Dutch fashion icon Bas Kosters.

Besides the exclusive design, the Bugaboo By Bas Kosters combines all of the features of the Bugaboo Cameleon—except the adjustable handle bar—and adds a wide range of accessories.

It includes:

  • A matching sun canopy, rain canopy and mosquito netting
  • A matching under seat bag capable of holding up to 6.3 gallons
  • A carry handle
  • Easy folding mechanism
  • Matching footmuff for cold weather
  • Aerosleep mattress
  • A matching sun parasol
  • Completely machine washable fabric
  • A maintenance kit bottle silicone spray, pump, container of petroleum jelly, cloth for silicone spray, cloth for petroleum jelly
  • Instructional DVD

The reversible seat and two-wheel position make three different modes for all sorts of terrain and comfort levels. The swivel wheels allow for a more maneuverable steering position.

Price: $ 2808 CAD at Crocodilebaby.com

This stroller is adorable. It reminds me of when Louis Vuitton came out with the Murakami handbag a couple of years ago. Not many in production, very exclusive and very different!!

Having this stroller would guarentee no one else out shopping had the same thing.


Comfy Shoes for On The Go Moms

I have seen these shoes all over and now I want a pair. They are perfect for my hectic lifestyle - no laces to tie!! There is only one problem, I am having a terrible time finding a Canadian company that carries them.

I swear they were designed for the on the go mom. Slip on and fashionable, what more could you want?

Toms, a shoe company owned by Blake Mycoskie, was inspired by the ancient alpagatos and the impoverished kids in Argentina while he was traveling there earlier this year.

"TOMS was created with a singular mission: To make life more comfortable. TOMS accomplishes this through it's ultra lightweight design and the company's commitment to match every pair purchased with a donated pair to a child in need…there are no complicated formulas, it's simple…you buy a pair of TOMS and the company gives a pair to a child on your behalf.” Blake Mycoskie

They are cute, come in great colours and are reasonably priced. $40 U.S. You have your choice of 15 colours/patterns. All that plus you are helping our children who are less fortunate.

As soon as I find a Canadian retailer I will post it!!

See the selection for yourself www.tomsshoes.com


Alberta's Children's Hospital Opens!!

Today is a big day in Alberta for families of sick children. Alberta's Children's Hospital opened it doors today after 7 years of planning and 3 years of construction. The new Hospital is the first free-standing comprehensive pediatric facility built in Canada in 20 years.

“There was an incredible amount of thought that went into designing and building this hospital, and as a community we should be very proud. This state-of-the-art facility will ensure our talented staff can provide the very best care to sick children, while at the same time helping them to push the boundaries of excellence. The sky is the limit in terms of the innovative, leading-edge quality care that we’ll be able to offer.” Charlie Fischer, a key advocate for the new hospital, who co-chaired the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation’s fundraising drive for the new building

Steve Hoscheit, President and CEO of the Alberta Children’s Hospital Foundation, which raised $53 million during the fundraising campaign for the new hospital, and more than $25 million since, says, "This facility is the hospital of our dreams. It allows us the opportunity to provide state-of-the-art care for our children because it is truly a state-of-the-art building.” Pride and commitment to excellence are evident in every square inch of the $253 million hospital. Among other things, the new building features:

  • The new hospital will be 50% larger than the current hospital -- an increase of about 500 thousand square feet of working space to 741 thousand square feet. It has the ability to double its capacity again if needed.
  • More operating rooms (from five to nine) and post operation beds will accommodate more surgeries.
  • An outpatient clinic area that will eventually become twice as large as the original site.
  • A specialized air flow system, inter-operative MRI and SMART technology capabilities as well as the ability to isolate a number of areas in case of an infection outbreak.
  • The Emergency Department in the new hospital is designed to accommodate 60 thousand visits per year. While the current hospital was built to handle 23 thousand visits, it now handles about twice that number.
  • The new hospital will have 133 beds. One-hundred-and-five of them will be single patient rooms - nearly five times more than the existing facility - an important factor in preventing the spread of infection and illness.
  • The new hospital is designed to further excellence in family centred care with enhancements like daybeds for parents in patient rooms.

While the new hospital features state-of-the art technology, it is also designed to be adaptable to changing technological needs without major renovations, thanks in part to dedicated interstitial spaces between floors where infrastructure can be replaced and upgraded without disrupting the hospital’s operations.

Hopefully this will be the beginning of new hospitals in Canada. Our current hospitals need to be updated to accomodate the growing population in this country.

SOURCE:Alberta Health Region


Organics or Not?

The organics awareness has been growing over the last few years. Major grocery chains now have a section of the store for organic products and health food stores are popping up everywhere.

Organic farmers are not allowed to use synthetic pesticides or fertilizers. All products sold as "organic" must be certified. Certification includes annual submission of an organic system plan and inspection of farm fields and processing facilities. Inspectors verify that organic practices such as long-term soil management, buffering between organic farms and neighboring conventional farms, and record keeping are being followed. Processing inspections include review of the facility's cleaning and pest control methods, ingredient transportation and storage, and record keeping and audit control.

In Canada, the organic industry has been growing at a rate of 15 to 20% annually for the past decade with approximately 3 670 certified organic farms in 2004.

The cost of organic food is higher than that of conventional food because the organic price tag more closely reflects the true cost of growing the food: substituting labor and intensive management for chemicals, the health and environmental costs of which are borne by society. These costs include cleanup of polluted water and remediation of pesticide contamination. Prices for organic foods include costs of growing, harvesting, transportation and storage. In the case of processed foods, processing and packaging costs are also included. Organically produced foods must meet stricter regulations governing all these steps than conventional foods. The intensive management and labor used in organic production are frequently (though not always) more expensive than the chemicals routinely used on conventional farms.

Because the cost of organics is almost twice the cost of regular produce, some families are not able to buy all organics for their household. Ewg.org has compiled a list of the most contaminated produce so...if you can't buy all organic, you should at least get these ones.

12 Most Contaminated Buy These Organic

ApplesBell PeppersCeleryCherriesImported GrapesNectarinesPeachesPearsPotatoesRed RaspberriesSpinachStrawberries

12 Least Contaminated

• Asparagus • Avocados • Bananas • Broccoli • Cauliflower • Corn (sweet) • Kiwi • Mangos • Onions • Papaya • Pineapples • Peas (sweet)

Environmental Working Group (ewg.org) has an extensive report on the pesticide level for all produce. It is definitely worth reading because we should all know which are good for our families and which are not.



Thursday, September 28, 2006
RECALL: Suave Kids Bath Sets Sold at Wal-Mart

About 11,000 Suave Kids Bath Sets sold at Wal-Mart are being recalled. Items in the baths sets contain small parts that pose a choking hazard to young children.

Recalled bath setsAdditionally, some of the handles on the carrying case are long enough to pose a strangulation hazard. Also, the plastic carrying case poses a danger of suffocation.

No injuries or incidents have been reported.

This recall involves "Suave" brand bath sets that contain a 3-in-1 shampoo, bath sponge, and various other toy animal and character bath products. The baths sets are packaged in brightly colored vinyl bags with a clear window. Style numbers involved in this recall are: SVK 9498, 9499, 9501, 9506, 9507 and 9508. The style numbers are located on the back and/or bottom right corner of the package, above the UPC code.

The sets were sold at Wal-Mart stores nationwide from March 2006 through June 2006 for about $10.

Consumers should stop using these bath sets and either dispose of them or return them to the store where purchased for a full refund.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact Almar Sales at (800) 251-2522 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or e-mail the firm at recall@almarsales.com.

The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).


Wednesday, September 27, 2006
Sip'n Snack

This cup is great! Juice on top, snacks on the bottom. What more do you need?

I'm sure it's been out forever, but I'm new to this sippy cup thing so I just found it. I thought that anyone else who is just starting with the sippy cup may want to check it out.

It's not very expensive $4-$5 depending where you find it and it comes with a strap so if it falls you don't loose it.

I found it at Perfectly Safe


Too Much Fluoride?

Are our children getting too much fluoride? It is being added to our water and toothpastes are loaded with it. It is alright for adults, but children can get too much, which makes their teeth look spotty and sometimes weaken.

Fluoride is a mineral found in nature. There is fluoride in the ocean, in the earth's crust and in fresh water. Fluoride works by making the outer layer of teeth (called tooth enamel) stronger. When the outer layer is strong, teeth are less likely to get cavities.

Adding fluoride to the water is the best way to provide fluoride protection to a large number of people at a low cost. That's why many towns and cities put fluoride in the water in a controlled manner. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control recently named fluoridation of drinking water one of the 10 most successful public health measures in this century. Canadian Dental Association
Dental fluorosis occurs when white specks appear on a child's teeth and is the result of a child getting too much fluoride. There is recent evidence that dental fluorosis among children is increasing. Most dental fluorosis is mild and barely visible. Moderate to severe fluorosis readily takes up stain, creating permanent brown and black discolorations of the teeth. Dental fluorosis is not health threatening. It is mainly a cosmetic condition. In more severe cases, it can be easily treated by the dentist. As a result of the staining and crumbling of enamel, children with moderate to severe dental fluorosis can suffer a great deal of social embarrassment and pyschological stress - with a corresponding loss in self-esteem.

A new fluoridated toothpaste guideline is only one step towards fixing the problem. As follows:

  • Children Age 1-2 should only use a slight smear of toothpaste
  • Children age 3-5 should only use 1/2 of a pea-size amount of toothpaste
  • Children Age 6 and older should only use a pea-sized amount of toothpaste
    • always supervise the amount of toothpaste used
    • teach your child to spit after brushing
    • help your child brush until 8 years of age

There are also non-fluoridated tooth pastes which are recommended for use before the age of 6. Burts Bees is the one I like the best - they also make one for children.

Ewg.org has posted the results of a study, done at Harvard, that finds a strong link between fluoridated water and bone cancer in boys.

The study, led by Dr. Elise Bassin and published online today in Cancer Causes and Control, the official journal of the Harvard Center for Cancer Prevention, found a strong link between fluoridated drinking water and osteocarcoma, a rare and often fatal bone cancer, in boys. The study confirms studies by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the New Jersey health department that also found increased rates of bone cancer in boys who drank fluoridated tap water.

Bassin's study comes on the heels of a National Academy of Sciences (NAS) report that found the federal "safe" limit for fluoride in tap water did not protect children from dental fluorosis or increased bone fractures. The NAS recommended that the allowable limit for fluoride in tap water be lowered immediately.

"This study raises very serious concerns about fluoride's safety and its potential to cause bone cancer in teenage boys," said Richard Wiles, EWG's senior vice president. "The findings raise fundamental questions about the wisdom of adding fluoride to tap water."

SOURCE: fluoridation.com SOURCE: cda.com

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Tummy Time!!

Normally babies hate tummy time, but this cute invention may change that. Made in Germany, this unit called the Wingbo allows babies to be on their tummy and swing themselves.
From the very beginning wingbo supports the locomotory development, promotes a healthy posture and stimulates mental development. It allows the baby to be active with their hands and feet, to grasp, to move, to achieve something and to learn with success. The baby is in prone position due to the ergonomic conception of the swing. It enables the baby to develop a healthy posture and, at the same time, strengthens the whole locomotory system.
This mat is a great idea. My only issue is space. We have sooo much stuff already. New parents may have to decide between having this unit or a traditional play mat in order to cut down on the number of "things" the baby has.
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
2 Girls Missing From Calgary

I don't usually post information on missing children. This story arrived today by e-mail, it is being carried by most major news papers so... If you have any friends or relatives overseas please forward this on in case anyone has seen these girls.

Our thoughts are with this family, we hope that someone is able to find these girls and return them safely to their mother.

Missing Children Society of Canada, August 25, 2006: Sisters Hannah, 5, and Cedar, 2 were looking forward to going to Australia for a holiday with their father Joseph Hawach on July 1 of this year. Instead both children were allegedly abducted by their father and are now believed to be in Lebanon.

Joseph Hawach, an Australian and Lebanese citizen, and the children’s mother Melissa, from Saskatchewan, met in Australia and were married there. A year later they returned to Canada to live in Calgary with their 2 children Hannah and Cedar. The relationship however, broke down, but both parents continued to see the children. Joseph told Melissa that he wanted to take the kids to Australia for a 3 week trip and signed a written agreement, promising to return them to Canada on July 21. Sometime after he took the kids on the intended holiday, Melissa became concerned because her daily conversations with the girls had stopped and she couldn’t get in touch with them.

Her concern was well founded when it was discovered by way of phone call from one of Joseph’s family members, that Joseph had left Australia with the girls. In early August, Joseph advised Melissa that she should travel to Australia where he would meet her with the girls. She immediately flew to Sydney only to be greeted by the realization that the children were not there and were most likely in Lebanon. Joseph’s family also informed Melissa that the only way the girls would be returned to Australia would be if she agreed to live in Sydney, give Joseph full custody, and dropped the charges against him.

Melissa is working with the police, the foreign embassies and consulates and the Missing Children Society of Canada to find her daughters. For Melissa and the rest of their family and friends, the nightmare of parental abduction is just beginning and we hope that someone will be able to come forward to help Melissa find her kids.

Hannah has brown eyes, light brown hair, is 3’8” and weighs 45lb. Cedar has brown eyes, blond hair, is 2’10” and weighs 35lbs. International warrants and an extradition order have been issued for the girls’ father who has been charged with two counts of child abduction.

If you have seen these children please call the Calgary Police Service at: (403) 266 1234 or call the Missing Children Society of Canada at 1 800 661 6160.

For more information about the Missing Children Society of Canada please call Liz Ballendine, Director of Development at: (403) 291 0705 or visit www.mcsc.ca.

Additional information Canada.com

That's Not Gas, It's Twins!!

Could you imagine going to the hospital with stomach pains and coming home with twins? That's exactly what happened to this mom in England. People UK tells us that:

MUM Carley Coleman thought her tummy ache was down to a busy day caring for her year-old son Louis.

But the 20-year-old got the shock of her life when doctors told her she was eight months pregnant - and about to have TWINS.

And just hours later she gave birth to 5lb 4oz Lilly-Ella and 4lb 9oz Harry after an emergency Caesarian.

Carley said: "It was unbelievable. I had no idea I was pregnant, let alone expecting twins.

"I didn't think I'd put on any weight as I was still wearing my size 12 and 14 clothes.

"And I didn't have any of the sickness and symptoms I was plagued with when I had Louis."

Hubby Paul, 35, from Eastbourne, added: "I was so shocked - but now we are thrilled."

Docs are at a loss to say why Carley showed no signs of pregnancy.


Car Seats Safety

There are a lot of things you have to put together when you have a baby. You will spend hours assembling the high chair, swing, and crib. By far the most important thing you will install will be the car seat. Some people do not take this seriously and they should. The police now have safety clinics to help parents learn how to install and buckle their children in properly.

There is also a tips site for parents to give them a better idea of how things should look when they are installed properly. Here is an excerpt from that site which is linked at the bottom of this post.

Installing your rear-facing child car safety seat on a proper angle

Photo of rear-facing car seat on proper anglePhoto of pool noodles under the car seat

Most child car safety seats have a recline position that must be used when in the rear-facing position for an infant (up to 9kg or 20lbs). Check your child car safety seat owner's manual for instructions. For rear-facing seats, if necessary, use a tightly rolled towel or a foam bar (pool noodle) under the base of the child car safety seat to adjust the angle to 45 degrees. A forward-facing child car safety seat should be in the upright position. Make sure that when the seat is turned from rear-facing to forward-facing, the recline feature is adjusted to the upright position.

Check for the safety label

Photo of CMVSS labelAll child car safety seats manufactured for sale in Canada on and after March 15, 1998 must have a Canadian Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (CMVSS) label on the seat. Prior to this date, a Statement of Compliance label was attached to the side of the child car safety seat. Both the CMVSS and Statement of Compliance are the manufacturer's certification that the child car seat meets all applicable regulations in effect at the time the child car seat was manufactured.

Also check your child car seat for an expiry date. Some manufacturers indicate an expiry date in the instruction booklet or on the child car safety seat. If there is no expiry date, do not use a seat that is older than 10 years from the date of manufacture.

No one seat is the "best" or "safest." The best seat is the one that fits your child's size, is correctly installed, and is used properly every time you drive. When shopping for a car safety seat, keep the following in mind:

  • Don't base your decision on price alone. Higher prices can mean added features that may or may not make the seat safer or easier to use. All car safety seats available for purchase in the United States or Canada must meet very strict safety standards established and maintained by the federal government.
  • When you find a seat you like, try it out. Put your child in it and adjust the harnesses and buckles. Make sure it fits properly and securely in your car. Keep in mind that pictures or displays of car safety seats in stores may not show them being used the right way.
    Important safety rules
  • Always use a car safety seat. You can start with your baby's first ride home from the hospital.
  • Never place a child in a rear-facing car safety seat in the front seat of a vehicle that has a passenger air bag.
  • The safest place for all children to ride is in the back seat.
  • Set a good example - always wear your seat belt. Help your child form a lifelong habit of buckling up.
  • Remember that each car safety seat is different.
  • Read and keep the instructions that came with your seat handy,and follow the manufacturer's instructions at all times. Read the owner's manual that came with your car on how to correctly install car safety seats.
  • If you need help installing your car safety seat, contact a certified Child Passenger Safety (CPS) Technician. To locate and set up an appointment, call toll-free at 866/SEATCHECK (866/732-8243) or visit www.seatcheck.org.
For More Information:


American Academy of Pediatrics

Both these sites have great information about weigh requirements for children in front facing car seats as well as instructions on how to install older childrens seats.

If after you have installed your car seat and you are still not comfortable with it, you can take your car to the local police or fire department and they will inspect to make sure it is safe. It is always best to be safe than sorry. For the few minutes that it will take to have a third party confirm you have done the installation properly, it will give you the piece of mind while travelling with your baby.

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Monday, September 25, 2006
Toys "R" Us To Carry A Guide for Differently-Abled Kids

Starting today Toys "R" Us will carry a catalog of toys for Differently-Abled Kids. Compiled by experts at the nonprofit National Lekotek Center, the guide will help parents find developmental toys for their children.

Each toy in the 52-page guide includes a detailed description of how it can be used, along with icons indicating whether the toy can stimulate development in such areas as creativity, self esteem, vision or hearing.

The guide can be useful to people buying toys for many of the more than 6 million children in the United States who have disabilities, said Diana Nielander, executive director of the Chicago-based National Lekotek Center.

The group, which operates 38 therapeutic play centers in eight states, evaluated some 200 toys over the past nine months to select those included in the guide, Nielander said.

Certified play specialists observe families and children with the toys, and determine which would work, for example, for a child who is blind, or for a child who can't close their hand, she said.

"We want to see toys that are great for the most amount of children. And sometimes the smallest thing can make the biggest difference," she said, such as knobs that allow puzzle pieces to be lifted easily from their board.

Nielander noted that the guide features photographs of disabled children playing with the toys, adding, "One mother told me that her daughter sleeps with this guide because it's the first time she saw children who look like her."

This is great news for parents who have spent many hours looking for the right toy for their child. This guide will help you make the right choices. It may also come in handy for relatives at christmas time when they are not sure what to buy.

National Lekotek Center: http://www.lekotek.org/

Toys R Us: http://www.toysrus.com/differentlyabled



Chic Furniture Or A Place To Feed The Baby?

This high chair is really chic looking. It is new from fleurville, the diaper bag designers. They have hired designer Yves Behar to help create an iconic design that would engage emotion and intellect.

You could almost use it more as a great piece of furniture rather than a high chair.

As great as this looks - you may want to hold off on ordering one as it will set you back about $1000.00 U.S. Unless, of course, that's within the budget that your working with...

You can get a better look at the features at callachair.com


Sunday, September 24, 2006
Cloth Diaper Trials Pt.4

So it has been a week since we switched over to cloth diapers. We do not use them exclusively because I only have 5. I really wasn't sure whether or not I liked the brand (Kushies all-in-one) I chose so I only bought enough for a day.

Since starting with the cloth diapers I have had a few issues. The first issue is my husband. He is not fond of the cloth diaper idea. He thinks that it is too much work. I think there is the perception of extra work because the diapers and the system are different. I am the one that is laundering the diapers and I am the one that uses them the most soo.... I am not sure where the extra work comes in.

The second issue is reliability. I don't feel confident putting the baby in the cloth diapers overnight. I just don't believe that they will keep him dry all night. When I change him during the day the diaper seems soaked after just a few hours. I have yet to try an overnight trial because I would be really mad with myself if he woke up wet and diaperashed.

My third issue is freshness. I can't seem to get the diapers to smell fresh. I doesn't matter what I soak or wash them in, they sometimes still smell like urine. I haven't yet, but I want to use fabric softener. I know that I can't use fabric softener. It is a no-no in the cloth diaper world. There is something in the softener that coats the fabric and makes the diapers less absorbent. It is just second nature that if you want something to smell fresh you throw in a bounce sheet. These diapers need a bounce sheet. I really want them to smell, at the very least, like nothing.

We are marching on though even through our issues.

Along with my negatives there have been a few positives. One is the way our son's cloths fit with the diaper on. He is naturally thin so his pants normally just slide off of him. When he is wearing the Kushies most of his clothes seem to fit him better. They stay where there supposed to be. It's nice because he can wear pants now instead of always being in his PJ's.

I am still on track and adjusting to cloth diapers. It makes me feel good to know that we are contributing less to the garbage situation in Ontario. Some municipalities recycle diapers, but our is not one of them. I would definitely feel good if I knew the few diapers we were using - were being recycled....Maybe soon. I will keep you posted!!


RECALL: Playskool Recalls Tool Benches After Two Toddlers Die

Playskool is voluntarily recalling about 255,000 Team Talkin� Tool Bench toys following the deaths of two young children.

Recalled toyPlayskool received reports that a 19-month-old boy from Martinsburg, W.V., and a 2-year-old boy from League City, Texas, suffocated when oversized, plastic toy nails sold with the tool bench toys became forcefully lodged in their throats.

Though the toy nails are not considered a small part, and the toys are intended for children age 3 and older, Playskool is voluntarily conducting a recall as a precaution to prevent additional incidents.

The Team Talkin� Tool Bench is a 20-inch tall plastic toy tool bench with an animated red toy saw, a yellow toy drill and a blue toy vice. The toy talks and makes various sound effects, including tool sounds.

The product also includes a toy hammer, screwdriver, two 2�-inch plastic screws, two 3-inch plastic nails and pieces to build a small toy plane. The red Playskool logo is on the front of the brown surface of the tool bench.

The toy was sold at Toys R Us, Wal-Mart, Target, KB Toys stores and various other stores nationwide from October 2005 through September 2006 for about $35.

Consumers should immediately take the two toy nails away from children and contact Playskool to get information on returning the nails for a $50 certificate for a Playskool (or its related companies�) product.

For additional information, call Playskool at (800) 509-9554 anytime, or go to their Web site at www.playskool.com.

The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).


Saturday, September 23, 2006
Organics Don't Increase Milks Benefits

For years now, many environmental groups have been listing the benefits of organics, mainly dairy. While organics are very important for vegetables, meat, and cottons, the Foods Standard Association in the U.K. has done a study that challenges what we have been told for years.
The FSA have rejected calls from a group of scientists to promote the health benefits of organic milk.

Scientists have been researching the difference between organic and standard milk, and have found that the milk containt more omega 3 oils - thought to promote health.

However, the FSA said that although there are more Omega 3 fatty acids in organic milk, they are the 'wrong type' and do nothing to help fight heart disease, as the scientists said they had proved.

Long Chain Fatty Acids have long been known to help prevent heart diesase. But according to the FSA, the 'extra' fatty acids contained in organic milk, were Short chain fatty acids, which are not as beneficial.

"The new evidence you have provided does not justify the assertion that organic milk provides health benefits other than those associated with conventionally produced milk," FSA Chairwoman Deidre Hutton said in a letter to one of the scientists, which is available on the Agency's website.

This is not to say that you shouldn't use organics. There are a lot of toxins that are used in the farming of our fruits and vegetables. In order to reduce the amount of negative chemicals you and your child receives on their food, you should try to eat organics whenever possible.

This article examines the nutritional composition of the two not the effects from chemicals and horomones.

Additional Information at
FSA website

Friday, September 22, 2006
I'm Getting Bigger
Thursday, September 21, 2006
Baby Halloween Costumes

Halloween is just over a month away, but all of the costumes are already out in stores. I am having a terrible time finding something cute and unique for my son. He is still pretty small so I am looking at sizes for 3-6 monthers. I have to say..there is not much out there for babies. Once they get over the age of 1, the amount of costumes quadruples. Here is what I have come up with. Keep in mind I was looking for something original....


Bumper Anyone?

When you are shopping for your new baby the best part is decorating the nursery. Most moms start with a theme and then build from there. Quite often the theme comes from the bedding.

We are all under the impression that we have to buy a big beautiful comforter to cover the baby. Pillows, bumper pads, bedskirt and curtains to match. The whole ensemble can set you back a couple hundred dollars.

In August of 2005 Health Canada issued a warning about bumper pad in the crib. Health Canada does not recommend the use of bumper pads in cribs because they pose an entanglement, entrapment, strangulation, and suffocation hazard to infants.

Between 1987 and 2001, 23 incidents involving bumper pads were reported to Health Canada, including one strangulation death, one suffocation death, and three near-suffocation occurrences.

The presence of bumper pads in a crib may also be a contributing factor for Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). These products may reduce the flow of oxygen rich air to the infant in the crib. Furthermore, proposed theories indicate that the rebreathing of carbon dioxide plays a role in the occurrence of SIDS.1

The Canadian Paediatric Society, the Canadian Institute of Child Health, and the Canadian Foundation for the Study of Infant Deaths have also issued statements advising against the use of bumper pads.

Bumper pads have been on the market for many years and a number of reasons are cited to promote their use:

  • to prevent infants from injury caused by bumping against the side of their crib;
  • to prevent the infant in the crib from entrapping his or her limbs between the slats of the crib, and;
  • for aesthetic reasons.

However, when used correctly, bumper pads should not protect infants from bumping against the sides of a crib or from having limbs become entrapped between the slats of the crib. This is because bumper pads are supposed to be removed from the crib by the time that the infant is able to roll over and sit up unaided (a development milestone normally reached between 4 and 8 months of age), which represents the same time frame in which it is expected that the infant would be able to move over and approach the side of the crib.

(It must also be noted that, for the most part, infants do not sustain major injuries from banging their heads against the sides of their cribs because they are incapable of generating enough force to seriously injure themselves through head banging. The frontal bone, which is the part of the head most frequently struck during crib head banging, is the thickest bone in the body and therefore, is capable of absorbing the shock associated with this type of behaviour.

It should also be noted that it remains possible for an infant to entrap his or her limbs over or under the bumper pads and that infant limb entrapment [between the slats of a crib], in the vast majority of cases, results in no injury or minor injury, such as bruising.)

In summary, aesthetic value, the risk of limb entrapment, and the risk of a child hitting their head against the side of their crib are overshadowed by the hazards of entanglement, entrapment, strangulation, and suffocation (potentially leading to death) that children are exposed to through the use of bumper pads.

More information at HealthCanada

The doctors at the hospital had instructed me against using bumper pads on our crib. We bought the whole "CribPackage" and it cost my parents $200. Our son doesn't use the comforter, it's way too bulky . A pillow is NEVER recommended for a baby. The bumper pads are sitting in the closet and the sheets are fine it's just you need more than one set for when the baby spits up. Out of the whole set we only use the bedskirt. Our crib doesn't look very luxurious, but it's practical. The baby has bumped his head a few times on the bars, but he's going to be okay.

When you are shopping for your new nursery, pick a colour scheme that doesn't revolve around one piece of fabric (ie. a border that matches comforter and curtains). Make sure that if you grow tired of the bedding you currently have the whole room won't clash if you buy something else. Always purchase a good mattress, nice sheets and a great blanket (no tassles). Everything else is not necessary.


RECALL: LEGO Toy Trucks Due to Puncture Hazard

LEGO is recalling about 358,000 "Explore Super Trucks." The plastic wheels on the truck can detach, exposing a metal axle. This poses a puncture hazard to young children.

Recalled truckLEGO Systems, Inc. has received 10 reports of a wheel detaching. Two children received serious puncture injuries resulting from the exposed metal axle once the wheel detached. Another child fell when the wheel came off of the toy truck.

LEGO EXPLORE Super Truck is a toy-in-toy product designed for children ages 18 months and up. The toy features a red plastic pick-up/dump truck that measures about 15-inches high and 19-inches wide with four 7-inch black plastic wheels that are packed with a box of 40 LEGO DUPLO bricks in the cargo area.

The unit has a row of DUPLO "studs" across the top of the cab, molded yellow headlights and stickers on the front and sides of the unit create the idea of a windshield, windows and doors depicting a LEGO figure in the driver�s seat. The LEGO Explore logo is printed on the door stickers. The box of DUPLO bricks is not included in this recall.

The trucks were sold at various retailers nationwide, including Toys "R" Us and Wal-Mart, from August 2002 through August 2004 for about $20.

Consumers should stop using the recalled toy trucks (not the bricks) immediately and contact LEGO Systems for information on receiving a refund.

Consumer Contact: For additional information, contact LEGO at (800) 718-1858 anytime, or visit www.LEGO.com.

The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).


Update: Kidnapped Baby Found!

Good News in Missouri this morning. The 10 day old baby that was kidnapped last Friday has been returned to her parents, unharmed.

Shannon Torrez came to 21-year-old Stephanie Ochsenbine's home in the small town of Lonedell on Friday, attacked her with a knife and left with her week-old infant, Abigale Lynn Woods, officials said.

In court papers, authorities said Torrez, 36, learned about the week-old baby through a "welcome home" yard sign for the new mother, Stephanie Ochsenbine.

Sheriff Gary Toelke said Torrez told investigators she was nine months pregnant but lost the baby on Friday, the same day little Abigale Lynn Woods was kidnapped. But Toelke said investigators are trying to determine whether Torrez had been pregnant.

Torrez was arrested Tuesday after her sister-in-law, Dorothy Torrez, contacted authorities.

Dorothy Torrez became suspicious when she noticed makeup on the forehead of the baby her sister-in-law claimed was her own, authorities said. She rubbed off the makeup and found a strawberry-red birthmark that matched the description of the kidnapped infant, investigators said.

I know everyone was worried about this baby and I am so glad she has been returned to her parents. In the original post I did for this story, I noted that historically about three-quarters of the kidnapped infants were recovered in less than five days. This baby was returned in 4 days.



Wednesday, September 20, 2006
Lead Exposure and Children

Lead exposure is a serious problem for children under 6. Large amounts of lead in a child's blood can cause brain damage, mental retardation, behavior problems, anemia, liver and kidney damage, hearing loss, hyperactivity, developmental delays, other physical and mental problems, and in extreme cases, death.

There are many ways in which humans are exposed to lead: through deteriorating paint, household dust, bare soil, air, drinking water, food, ceramics, home remedies, hair dyes and other cosmetics. Much of this lead is of microscopic size, invisible to the naked eye. More often than not, children with elevated blood lead levels are exposed to lead in their own home.

Until 1978, lead paint was commonly used on the interiors and exteriors of our homes. Today, the US Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) estimates that about 38 million homes in the US still contain some lead paint. While lead paint that is in intact condition does not pose an immediate concern, lead paint that is allowed to deteriorate creates a lead-based paint hazard. It can contaminate household dust as well as bare soil around the house, where children may play. In either situation, a child who comes into contact with lead-contaminated dust or soil is easily poisoned. All it takes is hand-to-mouth activity, which is perfectly normal for young children to engage in. All it takes is the lead dust equivalent of a single grain of salt for a child to register an elevated blood lead level.

Even with a considerable reduction in the number of children suffering from lead poisoning over the past 30 years, lead poisoning remains the number one environmental threat to children, according to the CDC, yet it is entirely preventable. The key is early detection through screening and immediate intervention when testing identifies elevated blood-lead levels.

Good news for parents, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved a new blood test that measures lead exposure and vies results in only three minutes. With only two drops of blood in just three minutes, providers no longer have to wait days for expensive lab results, or spend time trying to contact patients for critical follow-up care. It requires only a finger-stick sample and can be combined with other routine waived blood tests.

The test will identify how many micrograms of lead are found in one deciliter of the child's blood. Based on what is known today, children should have under 10 micrograms per deciliter (10 ug/dL) of blood lead concentration. If higher levels are found, there are certain steps that can be taken.

At 10-19, a child has mild lead poisoning. He or she should be retested in a few months. The home and all the places the child spends time should be checked for lead sources. Identified lead hazards should be controlled. Frequent wet cleaning and handwashing will help reduce lead dust. Good nutrition can help the child fight lead.

A blood lead level between 20-44 means the child has moderate lead poisoning. Sources of lead in the child's environment must be removed. Such a child may need chelation therapy to remove lead from the body. Chelation therapy means the child is given a drug capable of binding lead and reducing its acute toxicity. All drugs have potential side effects and must be used with caution.

A blood lead concentration of 45-69 is severe lead poisoning. A child needs both medical treatment and lead removed from the environment.

If the child's blood lead level tests over 70, it is an acute medical emergency. The child may stay in the hospital for treatment and not be released until he or she can return to a lead-free safe home.

Some tip to prevent lead exposure:
  1. Keep children away from peeling or chipping paint and accessible or chewable surfaces painted with lead-based paint, especially windows, window sills, and window wells.
  2. Wet mop and wet wipe hard surfaces, using trisodium phosphate detergent (found at hardware stores) or automatic dishwasher soap and water.
  3. Do not vacuum hard surfaces because this activity is believed to scatter dust.
  4. Wash children's hands and faces before they eat.
  5. Wash toys and pacifiers frequently
  6. Do not store food in open cans, especially imported cans. Do not store or serve food in pottery that is meant for decorative use. Also, do not store food or beverages in lead crystal or china.
  7. If soil around the home is likely to be lead-contaminated (such as around a home built before 1960 or near a major highway), plant grass or other ground cover. If lead-based paint is the source of soil contamination, most lead will be near painted surfaces such as exterior walls. In such cases, plant bushes next to the house to keep children away. If the soil is contaminated with lead, provide a sandbox with a solid bottom and top cover, and clean sand for children to play and dig in.

SOURCE:ecanadanow.com SOURCE:thearc.org SOURCE:nsc.org

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“Long time… no train!” By Cari

Well, it has been a long time since I have added an entry to the diaries. The reason is that I was hoping for a miracle. However, I am now at the point of acceptance and, at the risk of boring you, I am about to wax philosophical.

Being a parent in this time and place holds a lot of expectation and a lot of responsibility. I’m not claiming that we have it harder than our parents did, because that isn’t true. Nor am I trying to minimize other people’s situations throughout the world. All I am saying is that things are just “different” in today’s society. Because our reality is becoming so streamlined and efficient and full of information, it seems that we, as parents, have more pressure than ever to do everything “right”.

When I originally decided to start potty training with my son, I was motivated by several external factors like being able to send him to preschool programs, talking to other parents whose child was trained by two years of age, reading articles about potty trained infants, etc. However, after several unsuccessful attempts, I had to stop and re-evaluate.

My son is a happy, healthy little guy and has, in no uncertain terms, been trying to tell me that he just isn’t ready to go pee pee in the potty. Sure, he still loves to sit on his tiny throne and peruse a book or two, and we will continue to talk and read about it and reinforce it in the home. However, it is not my agenda nor society’s agenda that matters here.

What matters is that I do what is right for my son. This “acceptance” doesn’t come without regret, though. I am still looking forward to the day that he no longer needs diapers, but for now, I will let Gordon decide when the time is right. Wish us luck! I’ll keep you posted!


Tuesday, September 19, 2006
Designer Clothes For Your Baby

Recently, when I have been out shopping, I noticed that there is more designer clothes out there for kids and even babies. Years ago, if you were going to splurge on a gift for a baby you would go to The Gap. Now the stakes have been raised and the choices for a designer baby are endless.

When I was little the standard kid fare was at Sears. Now the place to be is Holt Renfrew Baby where you can get Baby Dior, Burberry (pictured, top right, sweater $85 U.S.), Diesel and Ralph Lauren (pictured,middle right Layette 146.25U.S.). Many high end fashion houses are launching baby fashion lines for their fashionista mommies. My only question is...What do you do with your $75 sleep when your child throws up all over it and you can't get the stain out??

I recently attended a party where a lot of the children were wearing name brand clothes. They had been educated enough in fashion to know that their dress came from Burberry and the shoes from Browns.

At this point are the clothes more from the kids or for the adults?

I'm all for my son looking good, he looks great everyday - he's a baby. It almost takes no effort because as soon as he smiles your no longer looking at the outfit and more at the baby. My favorite brand of sleeper comes from Costco for $8.49. Sears also make sleepers that wash up nice. I do occasionally shop at The Gap for "special pieces" like extra cute jackets and nice onesies.

While I was pregnant, I drooled over a blanket I saw at Dior (pictured top left, sleeper $115 U.S.) while in NYC on a shopping spree. I quickly realized that my $375 blanket could be ruined quickly if I didn't wash it properly. Not to mention the fact that I could outfit the baby for a year with the money I spent on one blanket!!

I have been noticing more lately that I don't seem to get as frustrated if a $10 sleeper gets a stain. If I had of paid more for it things would probably be different.

We have been lucky because our son has been getting good use out of all of his clothes. Due to the fact that he was a micro-preemie he doesn't grow quickly. He is growing...but slowly. He has just graduated out of 0-3, which he had been wearing for about 8 months. All of the clothes we have, have paid for themselves many times over, so we may be good candidates for the expensive stuff.

The bottom line is that having a few nice outfits for special occasions is appropriate, needing to always have designer clothes on your kids is a waste. They don't know the difference between a pair of jeans from Old Navy and a pair of "sevens"(pictured, for toddlers $172 U.S.). You will though when they rip them or forget them at school after soccer practice!


Baby Shower Hoagie Gift Set

Everyone has seen the Diaper cake at a shower, but now I have come across something that is just as unique....The Baby Hoagie Gift Set. This looks like a submarine and has a bunch of great starters for a new arrival.

I found it at www.takeastroll.com for $49.95 U.S.

Their secret Hoagie recipe:

  • 100% cotton receiving blanket
  • 2 terry burp pads
  • 3 terry washcloths
  • Undergarment
  • Booties
  • Lots of love


Newborn Baby Kidnapped From Home

A woman came to 21-year-old Stephanie Ochsenbine's home in the small town of Lonedell on Friday, attacked her with a knife and left with her week-old infant, Abigale Lynn Woods, officials said.

The family has posted fliers in gas stations and restaurants in neighboring Union. The baby, called "Abby" by her family was born on Sept.8, has dark brown hair, dark eyes, a strawberry birthmark on her forehead and weighs only 6lbs.

Callers continued to offer tips, but none led to a suspect.

"Any lead is good, but so far there's nothing that has stood out. There's a lot of information we have, but nothing concrete." Franklin County Sheriff Gary Toelke

The attacker had gained entry to the family's home Friday afternoon by asking to use Ochsenbine's telephone. Ochsenbine's boyfriend, James Woods, who is Abby's father, was at work at the time, police said.

They fought after the woman told Ochsenbine "I'm here to take your child," and Ochsenbine was stabbed several times and her throat was slashed.

Ochsenbine's 1-year-old son, Connor, also was in the house but was unharmed.

Ochsenbine passed out and police aren't sure how long she was unconscious.

When she regained consciousness, she picked up Connor and went for help, trying two houses where no one was home before arriving at neighbor Pat Bearden's home.

"She was standing there with blood all over her and said 'Somebody stole my baby,'" said Pat Bearden, 69.

The abductor has been profiled as someone who possibly had a child die recently or as someone who could not have children, told people she was pregnant and needed to steal a child so her lie would not be found out.

"Historically, these types of people have cased hospitals," FBI agent Roland Corvington said

From 1983 to 2002, there were 217 reported cases of nonfamily infant abductions nationwide, and all but a few babies were recovered safely within 25 miles of where they had been taken, according to a 2003 study by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children. About three-quarters of the kidnapped infants were recovered in less than five days.

I posted this article because I cannot fathom how this new mom is feeling. After spending nine months preparing for the baby, going through labour and then only having her home for a few days, it must have been devastating for her to have the baby snatched by some women. A sad and deranged woman who may have has a loss recently and is now compensating for it. It is terrible to know that even in a small town you cannot open your doors to a stranger. Our friends and family always laugh at me because I keep my doors locked at all times and rarely answer the door if I'm not expecting anyone. I guess it's not so crazy afterall.


Monday, September 18, 2006
10 Things For Baby I Couldn't Live Without

Last week another blogger posted 13 of the most unnecessary baby products. Some of which I agree with. I wrote recently about my lack of love for the Diaper Genie. I am less impressed with the wipes warmer, not to mention the lung clogging baby powder.

There are many baby things that I LOVE and couldn't live with out so I thought that I would take the time to list them.

10. Kate Spade Diaper Bag - I received this as a shower gift from my girlfriend and it has been a lifesaver when I am taking the baby out. This bag is big enough to carry my stuff as well as his. We all know that when you have a baby you no longer get to carry a purse so you must carry a fabulous diaper bag. It has enough room in it for a couple changes of clothes and 2 spots for bottles at each end which I love.

9. JJ Cole Original Bundle Me Infant - No Snow suit needed with this car seat bunting bag. Over the winter this was my savior. I just had to put a sweater and a hat on the baby and then pull the whole thing over top of him. It saved me when I was going into places where people were smoking at the front doors and when we were in elevators and people were coughing. It not only kept him warm but it covered his face so that the germs and smoke didn't get at him.

8. Baby Bjorn Baby Carrier - I still use this carrier almost everyday. I actually have two, one for around the backyard (which I purchased second hand) and one for when I am out shopping (I purchased new). Our son loves to look out as I'm sure most kids do. When we are out at the mall he will stay happy for hours if he is in this carrier. It has saved me on many days around the house when he is crabby. I just snap him in and then get the chores done.

7. Madison Playard with Bassinet - A great retreat for the baby when I am busy around the house. It feels good to know that you can put them in here, come back a few minutes later and they are still there and okay!! He also enjoyed sleeping in this when he first came home from the hospital. It was nice for us because we could make sure he was still breathing without having to run upstairs every 5 mins.

6. Evenflo Ellipsa Travel System - This stroller is big and bulky but I like it. It folds down so that it can be stored in the back of our vechicle. I like that it folds down for sleeping, the baby can sit up and look out plus the carseat fits in nicely when they are small.

5. Lamaze Freddie The Firefly Plush Toy - Most Lamaze toys are great. We like this firefly and the apple as well. One of them accompanies us at all times when we are out and about. The baby loves the bright colours and that there are so many things to chew on.

4. Play & Learn ExerSaucer - A friend told me I had to get one of these. We have sooo much stuff already, I wasn't sure we had enough room. We got it and haven't looked back. This exersaucer has been all over the province this summer. I strap it into the seat beside the baby and off we go. He will swing around in it for hours, laughing and chewing.

3. Ocean Aquarium Bouncer - Like the exersaucer, I was told by a friend that this bouncer would save my sanity. She was right. He didn't like it at first and still isn't fond of the vibrations but even now we are guaranteed 15 mins of happiness if we put him in it. As simple as it is...he loves to watch the bubbles and fish, they are mesmirising.

2. Baby Einstein: Baby Neptune Discovering Water DVD - I know that Baby Einstein is popular. I have purchased 3 of the videos and this is the only one he will watch. The others make him cry? I am not sure why, but this one makes him laugh and jump around - he loves the fish... and so do I because it makes him happy!!

1. Purely Yours Breast Pump by Ameda- A double electric breast pump. Need I say anymore. This pump has saved me lots of time and energy. I can do other things while I'm pumping because someone else is doing all of the work! I tried the medela pumps at the hospital but they didn't extract as much milk as this one. The choice is truly personal. This one works well for me and I love the fact that it can be plugged into the car if you need to pump while your out.

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