Vancouver - MOMS & KIDS
December 17th, 2011
You can always count on the Swedes to come up with a product that is more functional and better looking than its predecessors.
Say goodbye to the nose aspirator and say hello to the Nose Frida. This highly effective snot sucker works by allowing you to suck it straight out of your little one’s nose. Don’t worry, the mucus won’t come anywhere near your mouth, but it will come shooting straight out of their blocked passages. Not the most fun of tools, but you won’t complain once you’ve seen how well it works.
And after all, we want our turkeys and our stockings to be stuffed, but certainly not our kids’ noses. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
$22.99 at Whole Foods, 510 W. 8th Ave., Vancouver, www.wholefoods.com
December 10th, 2011
Festive fun for families in Seattle.
With free milk and cookies from room service, a Teddy Bear suite, gingerbread displays and glitter galore, your kids will be wide-eyed with wonder at the Fairmont Olympic Hotel. Snuggle them up in their miniature bathrobes while you slurp oysters sent up from Shuckers. Fairmont Olympic Hotel, 411 University St., Seattle, WA, 206-621-1700, www.fairmont.com
Escape for some adult time at the new RN74, named for the Route Nationale that runs through Burgundy. Choose a pinot noir off the wine list displayed on a French-style train board, and watch the selections flip and refresh throughout your meal. The service is extraordinary (as are the house-made doughnuts to cap off your night). Reserve. RN74, 1433 Fourth Ave. (at Pike St.), Seattle, WA, 206-456-7474, www.michaelmina.net
Take the monorail (half the fun) to the Space Needle whose observation deck currently features free photos with Santa in a spaceship and cosmic cookie decorating, plus priceless souvenir family photos like this one! www.spaceneedle.com
The Holiday Carousel at Westlake Park in the middle of downtown is a classic, while giant toy sculptures lit up along Waterfront Park will bring out the kid in everyone. www.downtownholidays.com —Sarah Bancroft
December 3rd, 2011
We’ve got the perfect solution for kids who like to make tents out of our sofas, cushions, throws, and furniture.
Dexton’s canvas teepee is not only the perfect hideaway for the little ones, it is also the most stylish alternative to a fort. And don’t worry if they decide to draw all over it, the canvas is made to be decorated with oil-based paint. We found it on Hip Baby’s new online store, which sells a whole bunch of other good looking kids’ gear. In fact, we’ll be needing two teepees to store all our cool new stuff. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Dexton teepee, $148 from Hip Baby.
November 26th, 2011
Shopping for the kids is always a fun part of the holidays, we've compiled some gift ideas for your little ones:
For the future chef…
This red vintage kitchen is perfect for the next Gordon Ramsey. Actually, let’s hope he is more of a Jamie Oliver. Kid Kraft red vintage kitchen $249.99 at Gagagougou, www.gagagougou.com
For the future rock star…
Ok, maybe a xylophone isn’t exactly rock’n’roll, but it will certainly get them started on developing rhythm. And this isn’t as loud as a drum kit. Plantoys Oval Xylophone, $27 at Babybot, www.babybot.com
For the future architect…
This Arne Jacobson dollhouse is a limited edition miniature version of his own house in Denmark. Yes, it is expensive, but this might be our only chance to own a house that looks this good. Arne Jacobsen Dollhouse, $1,500 at Ella & Elliot, www.ellaandelliot.com
For the future photographer…
This organic wood camera is made from maple and walnut woods, and will help our future Mario Testino get the perfect shot. Natural wooden imagination toy organic wood camera, $25 from Little Sapling Toys, www.etsy.com —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
November 19th, 2011
If "mine, mine, mine" is a common refrain around your household, put a positive spin on possessiveness with some of the fun projects at the new Vancouver store Make.
These personalized pillows ($35) for my daughters were as simple as emailing travel photos from my iphone (I put them through the Instagram app for a vintage look). Other great gifts are a leather journal with laser engraved initials (from $20), or his-and-hers hotel robes with embroidered monograms ($40-$120). Baby gifts (the pillow with name and birth date in oversized script is stunning, $55) are as easy as 1,2,3.
Now you just have to Make it happen.—Sarah Bancroft
Make, 1648 Duranleau St., Vancouver, 604-684-5105, www.makevancouver.com
November 12th, 2011
The French sure know what they are doing when it comes to baking, museums, perfume, and couture. Pretty much everything that counts.
So it doesn’t come as a surprise that they make some pretty amazing childrenswear too. Clara de Paris, the Montreal-based online store, is our new go-to for all that is designer French clothing for kids. We love Les Enfantines’ cashmere sweaters with removable collars. Buy one sweater, three collars, and you are set to go for the winter. The best part? The base sweater is unisex, so it is guaranteed your next one can wear it too.
It is such a struggle to emulate the chic, effortless style of French women, we think it might be easier to dress our kids à la Parisienne instead. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
$95 for the sweater, $20 per collar, Les Enfantines sweaters at Clara de Paris, www.claradeparis.com
November 5th, 2011
Astrology shampoo for kids.
Adventurous Aries pretends she is sailing the Nile, and strong headed Taurus refuses to get out. Ever.
Whatever your bath time melodramas, they'll be soothed by all-natural shampoo by Zodiac Baby with botanical scents chosen for each star sign.
Today's Horoscope: You will feel very, very sleepy. —Sarah Bancroft
Zodiac Baby shampoo, $22 at Kiss and Make Up, 925 Main St., The Village at Park Royal, West Vancouver, 604-922-6292, www.kissandmakeupstore.com
October 29th, 2011
The one thing you are guaranteed to receive when you are a parent is advice. A lot of it, and most of which you didn’t ask for.
But for once we are happy to be getting some parenting advice from family therapist Michele Kambolis. Parent Traps is her new weekly Vancouver Sun advice column, where she tackles the delicate situations and awkward problems we all face as parents.
“After fifteen years working with youth and their families, I have heard it all. I recognize that parents need a platform to both ask extreme questions about the stickiest dilemmas and share their less-than-flattering parenting moments,” says Kambolis.
You mean we aren't the only ones whose kids says she wants to stuff us in the garbage can? Thank goodness! —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Parent Traps, in Vancouver Sun’s Health section on Mondays, or online vancouversun.com/parenttraps
October 22nd, 2011
Spending an hour fantasy window-shopping on a fashion website is perfectly normal, however doing the same for a children’s clothing website seems weird.
But we just can’t tear ourselves away from Sweet William, the New York-based kids clothing and accessories site. With a beautifully curated selection of girls and boys clothes, Sweet William promises that all of their garments are made by environmentally and ethically responsible manufacturers. Our favourites include the Oeuf alpaca baby coat ($130) and the Nico Nico canvas poncho ($112, pictured.)
Set yourself a budget before venturing onto this site, and stick to it. If not you’ll end up with a well-dressed kid but a well-emptied bank account. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
October 15th, 2011
Between the mushy bananas, diapers and cookie crumbs, your life no longer fits into a clutch. But being a new mother need not mean lugging about a vinyl sac covered in ducks.
I’ve always been a fan of LeSportsac, especially since becoming a mum, but if you really want a bag designed with baby outings in mind, Rebecca Minkoff’s Bottled Up baby bag looks like something a sane and fashionable adult might buy.
It’s very similar to her classic Morning After bag only with baby-friendly pockets, a shoulder strap, changing pad and a waterproof liner.
When you’re sans baby no one will know you’re toting a diaper bag. Just switch the sippy cups for a bottle of Prosecco. —Athena Tsavliris