May 4th, 2013
Parents of boys know that there is a harsh inequality when it comes to baby clothes. Girls have a vast collection of separates, dresses, and accessories to choose from, while boys have to contend with basic onesies, jeans, and the odd sweater.
We think Winter Water Factory is trying to even things out. Its collection of organic printed baby clothes features a goldmine of boys’ items. The tools romper ($40) and construction onesie ($36.50, pictured) will certainly excite the heavy machinery fans in your family, and the high seas gown ($36) is perfect for any pirate-in-the-making.
May as well dress our girls in these too, in hopes they’ll take an early interest in power tools. That toddler bed isn't going to assemble itself. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
At Hip Baby, 2110 W. Fourth Ave., Vancouver, 604-736-8020 and online at www.hipbaby.com
April 5th, 2013
How many of us have vowed not to fill our houses with plastic baby junk?
The Bobbin Triple Play Centre should make sticking to that a bit easier. The wood activity centre is made in Canada for busy babies and their design-loving parents. Rather than coming stocked with obnoxious noise-making whirligigs, it lets you add your own cute (read: quiet) developmental toys. Then, when your tot outgrows it, it converts into tables of two different sizes – one of which even has a chalkboard top.
That's the kind of multitasking we love. —Kelsey Dundon
$549 at www.ellaandelliot.com
July 13th, 2012
It’s suggest that you bite them, tear them, or clip them, but whatever way you choose, trimming a baby’s nails is never fun.
What if we told you that there was a magical machine that would make baby manicures stress-free? Zoli’s award-winning Buzz B nail trimmer is a buffing machine, which gently files down the nails using textured pads. There are two different settings, and four different pads (depending on baby’s age.) The pads are soft enough that they won’t damage skin, and the Buzz B works on infants and toddlers.
Yes, we know it sounds expensive, but the good news is, the Buzz B is only $36, which is less than the cost of a manicure. Now, if only they’d invent a magic machine to paint our nails for us. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Buzz B Nail Trimmer, $36 at www.safandbenjamin.com
July 6th, 2012
We asked the VitaminDaily.com moms to tell us about one baby or kid’s product that was an absolute necessity (and sanity saver). Herewith, our mommy must-haves!
Sarah Bancroft, Editor-in-Chief, Mother of Emmanuelle, 6 and Charlotte, 3.
Tara gave my daughter Charlotte a lime green Fatboy beanbag (starting at $198) for her first birthday and it has since become a favourite crash pad for kids of all ages. We use it in the yard, the playroom, watching movies. I've got my eye on the cool new printed versions I saw in the window of Vancouver Special. www.fatboycanada.com
Tara Parker Tait, Publisher, Mother of Alexander, almost 3.
Tegu wooden magnetic blocks small kits are the best for restaurants. I keep them in my bag and Alexander gets them when we go out to eat. Starting at $36 a set, available from Babybot, www.babybot.com
Katherine Holland, Toronto Contributor, Mother of Roxy, 2.
The aden + anais muslin wraps were my fave when Roxy was little. They're super stretchy, so you can burrito your baby into submission, and also prevents them scratching their faces when they're little. They wash well, they're soft, and they're lightweight, so the little ones won't overheat. They work great as sun protection over strollers or bouncy chairs in hot weather. All you could ask for in a receiving blanket. aden + anais Muslin Bamboo Single Layer Baby Swaddling Wrap set, $59.99 from Lusso Baby, www.lussobaby.ca
Maria Tallarico, Managing Editor, Mother of Jackson, almost 1.
A gift from the team (thanks ladies!), the canvas SYM Charlie Diaper Bag ($175) eschews infantile print for modern, unisex canvas. It comes with all the bells and whistles you'd expect (change pad, convertible straps, smart phone holder) and easily fits the essentials: wipes, diapers, extra clothing and my 13" Macbook Air. It works wonderfully as a travel bag and includes a cooler pocket and two insulated bottle pockets. $175 at Saf + Benjamin, www.safandbenjamin.com
Alexandra Suhner Isenberg, Fashion Editor, Mother of Viktor, 1.
The O-Ball is the best first toy for little ones, which came recommended to us by our physiotherapist. It is very lightweight and has lots of holes, which makes it very easy for baby to learn to grab and pick up. It is also soft, so when baby decides hit himself in the head with it (they love doing that), there’s no harm done. This is good around 4-8 months, a short time frame, but one of the only toys you’ll need around then. O-Ball, starting at $8.95 at Saf + Benjamin, www.safandbenjamin.com
—Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
May 26th, 2012
We never thought babies would need a chiropractor, but it turns out that pediatric chiropractic care can be very useful. What’s not to love about a natural way to solve colic, prevent allergies, control asthma, and help baby sleep? Here are some facts from Dr. Stephanie Bonn at Coco Chiropractic in Vancouver:
1. Chiropractic adjustments help to stimulate nerves, and can help solve colic and reflux problems. So much better than medication!
2. Chiro can help support the parasympathetic nervous system to naturally relax a baby (how you feel after a yoga class!)
3. Chiro improves the child's lung function and increases their threshold to allergies. Asthma and allergies are two things we don’t want our kids to inherit.
It’s nice when someone’s got your back. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
March 3rd, 2012
You can provide the most colourful, squeaky, chewy teethers, but baby always prefers to gnaw on your earring, sleeve, or keys.
That’s one of the reasons Canadian company Teethease created jewellery that was specifically made for babies to chew on. Their range of donut shaped pendants, bracelets, and necklaces are BPA and PVC-free, dishwasher safe, and made from medical-grade silicone. They are also stylish, which is why you’ll be happy to wear them as accessories, and safe, so baby can chew away.
Now if only they’d make clothes that doubled as a nanny, shoes that could turn into healthy snacks, and a hat that was also a sleep trainer. —Alexandra Suhner Isenberg
Teethease bracelets start from $9.95 and necklaces from $16.95 at www.myteethease.com
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.
June 17th, 2011
Not everyone is a fan of games at a baby shower, but we need to keep the mom-to-be entertained while we drink all her champagne.
1. Match the celebrity and their baby. Print out lists of celebrities and their baby’s (ridiculous) names, ask the players to match each child with their parent. The one with the most correct matches wins. Do you know who Bear Blu, Moon Unit, and Princess Tiaamii’s parents are? The fun begins….
2. Decorate onesies while mom-to-be opens gifts. Unwrapping presents can take a long time, so provide a few sets of plain onesies and let the guests personalize an outfit for the baby. Non-toxic fabric paints and printed fabrics (for appliqués) make for some very memorable onesies.
3. Baby bingo. A great opportunity to hand out some fun little prizes, you could make your own bingo cards, or go the easy route and order these cute ones from Etsy. We love nail polishes or antique tea cups and saucers as prizes, and if many of the guests aren’t parents yet, baby making kits (sexy panties) are fun too.
June 10th, 2011
If it's "early to bed, early to rise" for most people, then it's "never to bed, always to rise" for new moms.
You may not have the little one sleeping through the night quite yet, but Canadian-made sleep sacks by Big Fat Hen will at least keep them comfy while they learn to doze for more than two hours at a time. Made with eco-friendly fabrics, these sleeveless sacks unzip easily for diaper changes and are soft inside and out. Made for babie 0-18 months, they come in three cute designs (yellow chicks, pink piggies and green owls) and hold up well in the wash.
And one day soon, the sun will rise before you. We promise. —MT
$79.90 at www.bigfathen.ca
May 27th, 2011
In many hip 'hoods, it's easier to buy a crystal-studded chihuahua collar than a sippy cup.
New boutique Saf & Benjamin, opened by a Vancouver mom frustrated by the lack of baby and kid goods available in her Yaletown neighbourhood, stocks a fantastic—and practical—selection of Tawna Hill natural skin care products and pieces from Canadian lines, like Mini Mioche hoodies, Escargot cowboy shirts and 3 Sprouts storage bins and wall organizers.
See, there's room for the four-legged and two-legged babies... just try not to stare when you spot a poodle in a pram.
Shop the new online boutique or in-store: Saf & Benjamin, 1081 Marinaside Crescent, Vancouver, www.safandbenjamin.com