Vancouver - MOMS & KIDS
February 25th, 2012
How does one childproof their home without turning it into a maze of gates, walls, guards and padded corners?
We consulted baby guru Desiree Cluff who believes in teaching children what they can and can’t touch, rather than making everything inaccessible.
1. Teach your child some basic sign language, like “hot”, “stop”, “danger”, and “pain.” Use the sign sharply when they approach dangerous areas (the fireplace, the stove) and make sure they understand it is a no go zone. It needs to be repeated a few times, but is a great way to teach your children boundaries.
2. Have a drawer in the kitchen that the baby can access, for example, a bottom drawer full of tupperwares. This way they can have some fun in the kitchen, but won’t be getting into your knives and breakables.
3. People often drop their cribs too late. Don’t wait until there is an accident, drop it as soon as children are mobile.
4. We all know about dangerously hot water heater temperatures, but most people don’t bother to lower them. Do it, burns are never fun.
5. Be careful of baby products that aren’t safe. Baby oil is a mineral oil (made from petroleum) that can be fatal if ingested. Don’t leave a bottle in arms reach near the change table, or, even better, don’t keep a bottle at all. Use a natural, safe vegetable oil on your baby’s skin. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
For a one on one consultation about child proofing, sleep coaching, or toilet training, contact Desiree Cluff at Rockababy, www.rockababy.ca
Editor’s tip: For latches, send photos of your cupboards and drawers to Babysecure.ca and their safety guru will recommend the best type of safety feature.
February 18th, 2012
Our editors across the country select the coolest family-friendly activities in their cities, from eagle-watching to pizza-making.
While Vancouver waits for its own family day (coming in 2013) you can bond-and-breathe with your kids at Sunday morning family yoga at the new Che Baba studio. After, head down to the Cantina whose haute-hippie vibe and boho patterns may just remind you of that '70s show you called your childhood (only nicer). Try the poached eggs on pulled pork and crispy polenta for breakfast: Ohm, my. Che Baba, 603 Kingsway St., Vancouver, 604-588-1519, www.chebaba.ca —Sarah Bancroft
‘Fun for the whole family’ takes on a whole new meaning when you have an 8-month old and a dog. This weekend try one the hikes around Alice Lake, with the baby in the backpack and the dog off leash (shhh… don’t tell the park rangers.) Park near Stump Lake, if you are feeling lazy, the loop around the lake is a nice 40 minute walk and, if not, do the full Four Lakes Trail, which takes about 90 minutes. End your outdoors-y day at the Watershed in Brackendale. This time of year there are hundreds of eagles visible from the patio plus they’ve got two high chairs, a place to tie the dogs outside and a decent wine list. Indulge in an afternoon tipple and get home by 6:30pm to put the baby to bed. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
What’s black and white and waddling into Calgary? The residents of the Calgary Zoo’s brand new Penguin Plunge exhibit. See the birds perch outdoors on rocky outcroppings, look down through a glass floor as they swim underfoot or go inside for a underwater view of the plunge pool while lights flicker mimicking the Aurora Australia. Adults, $21; kids ages 3 to 15, $19, 1300 Zoo Rd. N.E., Calgary, 403-232-9300, www.calgaryzoo.org —Jaelyn Molyneux
This late in the season, skiing, sledding and skating can start to lose its appeal for some so this weekend, we’re taking it indoors. Specifically, to the Ferns Greenhouse at the Botanical Gardens where the Butterflies Go Free exhibit has just opened (and is guaranteed to enchant both young and old!). 4101 Sherbrooke St. E., Montreal, 514-872-1400, www2.ville.montreal.qc.ca —Christine Laroche
For the budding pizzaiolo, here's a chance to make his own pie from scratch at new pizza place, Piola. Eew to green things and sausage that makes his tongue tickle? No problem, little Giovanotto gets to pick and choose what makes the cut. Pizza $10 with a pop, 1165 Queen St. West, Toronto, 416-477-4652, www.piola.it —Athena Tsavliris
February 11th, 2012
Get crafty with the little ones you love.
I love the oversized pink heart print ($50) (cleverly sized to fit a IKEA frame) at Banquet Atelier Workshop, but for bonding over glue with the kids, I take them to Vancouver's Collage Collage, where we'll make these adorable cupid's arrows together in their drop-in workshop today ($12). —Sarah Bancroft, editor in chief
There’s a limited number of crafts you can do with an eight-month old, so for Valentine’s Day, I made some foam cards and Viktor signed them with his handprint. Here’s how I made them. We are giving them to all of his girlfriends, who will probably just suck on them or tear them apart. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg, fashion editor
Growing up, my mum always made Valentine’s Day a special occasion. For my own daughter I heart these retro placemats ($31.45) and polka-dot aprons ($21.76) from Pottery Barn Kids. They’re perfect for an afternoon of crafts and cookies. —Marianne Wisenthal, Toronto Contributor
On Valentine’s Day, I’ll make heart-shaped fried eggs for my husband and children and then we’ll spend the day walking through Toronto’s streets and parks (let’s hope it’s a blue sky day) until we get chilly and need to stop for a pizza. —Athena Tsavliris, Toronto editor
February 4th, 2012
Being scared of the dark is no longer an excuse for putting off bedtime.
Meet the Glo Nightlight, a bedside lamp with removable glowing balls that act as portable nightlights. The phosphorescent balls aren’t electronic and don’t get hot, so they are safe to snuggle with when the room goes dark.
The balls’ light will fade 30 minutes after they’ve been removed from the base, and you can select one tone, or have a rotating array of colours. We suggest you choose the colour that will best ward off any monsters lurking in the closet.
Boon Glo Nightlight, $84.99 from Saf & Benjamin, 1081 Marinaside Cres., Vancouver, 778-328-8194 and online at www.safandbenjamin.com —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
January 28th, 2012
If Suri Cruise taught us anything in 2011, it’s that stylish pre-school attire is just as important as learning to tie your shoes.
Inspired by shopping trips to Paris and, of course, les chic petits enfants, Canada’s Dote Baby was born, a brand-new online baby boutique for fashionable parents with a discerning eye.
The store’s extensive international brand selection (shipping to: everywhere) includes adorable, trendy pieces from Sweden’s Cheap Monday, Bébé by Australia’s Minihaha, as well as the must-have, celebrity-adored Minnetonka Moccasins.
For those who appreciate the finer things in life, for the little ones in your life, yourdoting hours are about to go into overdrive. —Caroline Gault
January 21st, 2012
If the kind of pee your princess is sleeping on is not the stuff of fairy tales, you need a mattress protector.
Now if our 2-year-old princess would actually sleep in her own bed, we’d be living happily ever after. —Sarah Bancroft
January 14th, 2012
Tired of the bright colours, weird characters, and hideous graphics on most children’s homewear? We are, and that’s why we love this wooden alphabet by Toronto-based husband-and-wife design duo Bookhou.
The A to Z birch wall hanging is in Courier New, which is the font they used for their logo. It wasn’t intended for children’s rooms, but has proven popular with some design-savvy parents.
So when our kids grow up and want Justin Bieber posters on their walls, we can move this piece in our home office. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Wood alphabet, $50 from Bookhou, www.bookhou.com
January 7th, 2012
Intimidated by cloth diapering? It is easier than you think (this Editor is fully committed to doing it part time!) Here are some of the myths dispelled.
Myth 1: All the parts are too complicated. If you buy an all-in-one cloth diaper, then there are no covers or inserts to deal with. On, off, and straight into the washing machine. Bamboo Baby All-in-One diaper, $21.50 from Hip Baby, www.hipbaby.com
Myth 2: One size fits all. Teeny newborns need a smaller diaper than bigger babies, so go for the wallet-friendly pre-folds, as you’ll only use them for a few months. Editor’s tip: the cotton inserts can be used as cleaning rags for the next 20 years. Bummis Organic Prefold 6 pack, $18 and Bummis Super Snap cover, $13.50 each, both from Hip Baby, www.hipbaby.com
Myth 3: They aren’t as absorbent as disposable. Oh Katy’s pocket diaper comes with two microfiber inserts, which you can double up at night. Plus, they can be worn as training pants during potty training. Definitely this editor’s favourite. Oh Katy pocket diaper, $21.95 each and 6 for the price of 5 from Sea to Sky Baby, www.seatoskybabies.vpweb.ca
Myth 4: It is messy. Bio liners mean there’s no scraping or mess, the liner goes straight into the toilet and your hands stay clean. Bio-soft liners, $6 from Sea to Sky Baby, www.seatoskybabies.vpweb.ca
December 31st, 2011
Not all young girls want to dress like princesses, rock stars, or look like they are going to a nightclub. So what do they wear?
That’s the question that prompted two Alberta-based moms to found Triple Flip, a company that makes fun, pretty active and casualwear for tween girls. The line, which recently opened a location in Park Royal, features clothing, outerwear, and accessories specifically designed for that age group (they measured 400 girls to figure out the best possible fit.) Our picks? The Valley T, $35-$39 (its SO Flashdance) and the Minky Lounge Pant, $39.
Of course we know what you are thinking, and the answer is yes, they go all the way up to a women’s size 8. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
December 24th, 2011
A little variation on an old classic:
‘Twas the night before Christmas and all through the condo
Not a creature was sleeping…so get to bed pronto!
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care
Ok, so it’s a gas fireplace, but the Whole Foods cookies were there.
The children were nestled in their Ikea bunk beds
While visions of iPhones danced in their heads
And Mamma in her La Perla and Pa in his Jockeys
Were “discussing” (again) appropriate times to watch hockey
When out on the sidewalk there arose such a clatter
I sprang from my Eames rocker to see what was the matter
Away to the window I flew like a flash
No shutters to open because we don’t have the cash
The moon on the breast of the new fallen snow
Gave the luster of midday to the objects below
When what to my wondering eyes should appear
But a Fiat 500 and 8 guys chugging beer.
Merry Christmas from everyone at Vitamin Daily!