Thursday, December 16, 2010

i love when mainstream media picks up stories like this...

on the front page of right now, there is a story about a woman who had a successful vbac at home.  read it here.

my favorite part is the last line.  a quote from her saying:

"Once you have that experience there's no other way to go, being in the comfort of your home without any unnecessary interventions and feeling like you're in charge"

Thursday, November 18, 2010

on the fence about cord blood? this may help...

i have done previous posts on cord blood.  we all have our opinions about it, right?  here is an article on today's about how most kids cannot be treated for the very diseases that the banks advertise (leukemia, sickle cell anemia and more) with their own cord blood cells, because the cells have the same "problematic dna".  here, this pediatric bone and marrow transplant doctor, haydar frangoul, says it better:

"it would be ridiculous to use the child's own cells.  it would be like taking someone with cystic fibrosis who needs a lung transplant and giving them back their own diseased lung."

the article has good info on how there are now free public banks that we will likely all benefit from in the future.  plus, as suspected, the private banks will have an abundance of cord blood that may not be able to be used for the original newborn donor.

photo via here.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

ever wondered what to replace your mercury fillings with?

i have.  i know there are composites, but don't they have bpa in them?
when the mercury fillings are removed, don't you consume some?

this area can all be a little overwhelming.  mercola has a brand new article that can help us all decide what to do when we need a filling or want to have a mercury one removed and replaced.

read more here.

photo via here.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

the switch witch : this candy-removing fairy gets major props

my awesome osteopath let me in on the best idea ever if i do not want to give my kid candy on halloween...

that idea is the SWITCH WITCH!  this bitch (i can't resist, i'm so excited) pops over to your house after a nightcap with the tooth fairy and takes your kid's candy to "all of the children in the world who do not get any candy on halloween." yes, the quotes were intentional. yes, the candy goes into the trash can.  and no, i do not normally condone lying to your kids.  though, i absolutely support you finding a way to get your kid's candy to all of the candy-needing children in the world if you have the means.

on the upside, you can go crazy and ask your kid to pick the ONE piece of candy that he would like to keep for himself before being so generous as to "give the rest away" the trash can.  i mean to the children of the world.

photo via here.

hyland's teething tablets recall

on october 23, 2010, the fda issued a consumer safety alert for hyland's teething tablets.  ugh, we use those all of the time.  please read more here or here.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

huge sale at sckoon organics!

i cannot tell you how many pairs of the above flared organic cotton knit pants we have purchased since my son's birth 2 years ago...4? 5?  we even bought some for him to grow into.  they are so adorable on! anywhoo, sckoon organics makes 'em ($10 right now!), and the site has a great sale going on....up to 65% off!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

womb to world workshop with anna verwaal in los angeles

we had 2 incredible doulas at our son's homebirth.  and they are both involved in this once-in-a-lifetime workshop!  danielle marie gutshall is hosting and organizing anna verwaal's workshop.  this is like anna's seminar that my husband went to 2 years ago (it was specifically for dads that day), and he called at the end saying, "we're having a homebirth!  done deal."

a little info:

Who are the workshops for? 
This profoundly transformational and highly informative course is designed for birth 
professionals, midwives, doulas, childbirth educators, birth related body workers and 
healers, prenatal yoga instructors, couples planning to conceive or currently pregnant 
and anyone seeking to understand, prevent and heal from birth imprints & trauma 
How are the workshop presented? 
Audio-visual Power-Point presentations containing text and photographic 
  documentation of Anna’s clients and their babies experiencing all kind of birth 
  scenarios. (All stories told and photos used with permission) 
Various current DVD’s on birth, breastfeeding and bonding. 
Do I have to attend all three days or can I just take one? 
Each separate workshop is about a different aspect to do with birth and can be taken by 
it self. How ever the workshop series is created to take the participant on a journey, 
from the past, through the present into the future. This will lead to an understanding of 
how all aspects of birth affect the journey. Where we are in our consciousness, 
emotionally and spiritually greatly influences and shapes the physicality and outcome of 
the birth journey whether you are a doula, midwife, or parent-to-be. 
Who presents the workshops? 
Anna Verwaal, RN, CLE, born and educated in the Netherlands is a Maternal-Child 
Health Nurse, Conscious Conception & Birth Consultant, Labor- & Post Partum Doula, 
UCLA Certified Lactation Educator and Birth Photographer. 
Anna lectures internationally and teaches workshops about the cellular memory of the 
birth experience, the physiological & hormonal blueprint for birth & bonding as well as 
the deeply psychological, emotional and spiritual aspects of giving birth. Her experience 
is based on working for more than 25 years in various countries as a nurse and doula 
along side perinatologists, obstetricians as well as (indigenous) midwives attending 
hospital, birth center, home, lotus- and nature-births. Currently Anna lives in Santa Fe 
and is working on a photo book of birth. 

Workshop location and directions 
Bini Birth Loft, 5355 Cartwright Ave. Unit 313, North Hollywood, CA91601 
Workshop Dates & Times 
October 9, 2010 from 9-30 AM until 5.30 PM 

photo from anna's website.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

birth rape

"birth rape" interesting and controversial term, no doubt.  a recent article out of sydney, australia discusses:

"We have previously discussed studies linking difficult births with post-traumatic stress disorder and post-natal depression, the result of which has left some women reluctant to consider pregnancy and childbirth again.
But couple a horror birth with a doctor, midwife or healthcare professional who has little regard for the labouring woman and penetrates or examines her without consent, using instruments or his/her hand, and the controversial notion of “birth rape” is born.
Examples of birth rape include internal vaginal examinations without consent, breaking membranes without consent and inserting of forceps and other instruments into the vagina against the mother’s wishes.
Some women who claim to have experienced birth rape describe incidents where doctors or midwives made belittling and degrading comments when they could not birth fast enough, stitching lacerations without anaesthetic and inserting catheters without warning."

what's really interesting to me is how, in the comments section below the article, the aussie women are beside themselves at how "ridiculous" this all is.  while in the american women here can really relate.

photo via here.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

"amazon mom" new discount club on amazon

ok, here's what i understand this brand-new moms club to be:

*not just for moms, but any caretaker
*30% off diapers and wipes that you have signed up for as a  scheduled delivery
*free 2-day shipping for the first 3 months.  it continues like this : for  every $25 you spend in the baby department, you earn a month more  of free 2-day shipping.
*emails from amazon about discounts and helpful product  recommendations.

i loooove this since i am already buying nature babycare diapers off of amazon, so it's aaaallll gooood!

your flu shot this year contains the swine flu vaccine

the vaccines are not separate like last year.  major health problems for people of all ages, and some deaths, are arising all over the world from the h1n1 vaccine.  to avoid the flu, you must try to maintain a healthy immune system that can fight off bad bacteria and viruses.  be sure to stay on top of your vitamin d3 intake (10,000 iu/daily).    more on d3 here.

for most of us, any flu is worth a crummy couple days in bed compared to the mysterious harm of vaccines.

read more here.

photo via here.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

happy birthday to us!! baby manual is all grown up....

baby manual was born one year ago today, on labor day 2009!  are we walking yet?  are we sleeping through the night? are we still on the boob?....who cares?!

it's been a fun run with 207 posts and counting!  thank you so much for the loving and wonderful support of our amazing readers all over the world.  please keep sharing and continuing to help us build a community for conscious, crunchy parenting from the heart....

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

not sure i can ever get a dog from a breeder again...

what in the heck does that have to do with what i normally post about?

well, a friend recently got 2 sibling puppies from a breeder.  she was talking about how they cried all night the first couple of nights, and it made me realize something that i had never really thought about before.

puppies are taken away from their mothers usually around 6-10 weeks of age.  they are removed from their frolicking pack of siblings, sometimes a present father, and a mother who nurses and keeps them warm.   their new human family typically puts them in a cage, feeds them dry, unhealthy dog food, and leaves them alone for long periods of time.

this goes against everything i now believe as a mother.   don't you think if people choose to breed their dogs, or buy from a breeder, they should consider how traumatic this separation is?

photo via here.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

i've been reading up on weaning *sniff sniff*

i'm not positive why, but ever since my son turned one (9 months ago), i planned on nursing him until he was 2.  well, his 2nd birthday is approaching in a few months, so i've started reading some books on weaning.  i had always hoped that, by some miracle, maybe he would start to wean himself around this time.  yeah, i apparently totally pulled that one out of my ass.   here is one of many quotes (all in the same vain) about self-weaning that i have come across:

"Children allowed to wean themselves--that is, to end breastfeeding without hints, bribes, bottles, or other encouragements--seem to do so usually between ages four and six."

that's right ladies and gentlemen, ages FOUR and SIX....hmmm....

ugh, sometimes i wish i lived in mongolia or among the sioux indians, so i didn't even have to think about this weaning stuff.  not sure of my decision yet...

this one, from the nursing mother's guide to weaning, slayed me:

"But pressure to wean may come from people outside the immediate family. 'I really should quit,' said a four-year-old, like an addict nearly ready to kick the habit. 'You know, Bill quit.'  Another child, a four-and-a-half-year-old whose friends had teased her for nursing, couldn't openly discuss her confused feelings at first.  'I don't want to nurse...I hate you,' she told her mother, starting to cry.  When questioned, however, she explained the problem: 'I want to stop and I have to hate you so I won't want to nurse anymore.  I hate your breasts.' "

UPDATE: so a little more than a year after i wrote this post, as my son approached his 3rd birthday, i weaned him.   i was SO ready.   we had gotten nursing sessions down to once a day--upon waking in the morning.   in the previous months, we had narrowed down to 3 sessions, then 2, then just the one in the morning that i mentioned.   he finds comfort in his paci and still wants to cuddle and hold my boob at times, so i'm ok with that for now.   though i try to keep the boob holding to a minimum.   i was able to talk to him and explain all of this weaning to him in advance, so it wasn't super emotional for him.   he is still very cuddly with me.  we hold hands a lot while cuddling.

some books if you're pondering weaning...

when looking into buying parenting books, i tend to check out the reviews on amazon, and i also peruse our fabulous pediatrician, jay gordon's, newest addition to his website--"recommended reading"!

i must say that when i recently purchased the 2 books below, i expected pages upon pages of information of HOW to wean. strangely, each has only about 10 pages on actual weaning techniques.  the books mostly explain all angles of weaning--emotional, hormonal, logistical, causes, historical weaning....

though i expected the books to have more info on technique, i was not disappointed.  i am happy that i learned so much about such an important area of parenthood...did you notice how i didn't say motherhood?  although, weaning is ultimately under a mother's control, dad should have input too---and both books have sections for dads.

the books are:

the nursing mother's guide to weaning by kathleen huggins, r.n., m.s. (2007)

mothering your nursing toddler by norma jane bumgarner (2009)

Monday, August 23, 2010

anyone interested in learning about nutrition?

after speaking with a friend yesterday about our toddlers' nutrition, i became inspired to write this post.  i'm not going to launch into a whole campaign here, but if you're interested in learning about what the best things to do for your body are, stick around.  these are the token books that changed my life and opened my eyes to what the body needs to stay healthy:

1.  ten years ago i read dr. nicolas perricone m.d.'s book the perricone prescription.  i instantly wanted to become a doctor....yeah, that didn't happen (i'm sure you hadn't noticed).  anywhoo, perricone is on the forefront of science and nutrition.  whereas i would recommend that you read the perricone prescription, i would probably moreso recommend that you get his recent 2007 book or even pre-order his september 2010 book.   this of course, because these newer books will no doubt have the most up-to-date information.  p.s. do not be scared by the over-abundance of [his own facial] plastic surgery, focus on skin-care, or his titles about gotta trust me here.  his books are about your entire body and are extremely informative and eye-opening.

2.  after reading in perricone's books about the damage that a high-glycemic diet (SUGAR!) can have on the body, i read the zone by barry sears.  did you know that eating a baked potato has the same effect on your blood sugar levels as downing 8 spoons of sugar? again, try not to be deterred by the book's mention of weight-loss, etc. these guys gotta sell books, and god knows americans want to know the secrets of weight-loss, so....

3.  now after all of this, if you are curious about the quality and sources of food in america, you will definitely want to read the omnivore's dilemma by michael pollan.  this book is a bit of a bible to us organic hippies.  it left me talking about corn corn corn to everyone i came into contact with for days.  weeks....

if you would like to stay in the loop on up-to-date nutrition, check out and sign up for his email newsletter.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

finally a hooter hider that's subtle, sophisticated, and doesn't cook the baby in this heat.

as any of my friends can tell you, i am no hooter hider.

that came out wrong.

what i'm trying to say is that when i nurse my son, i do not feel compelled to hide my breast.  i'm not sure if it's my breastfeeding-activist-in-training side coming out or just a lack of embarrassment since my breasts can hardly been seen by the naked eye anyway.

if you ARE a hooter hider, rejoice!   there is finally a hooter hider cover up that does not resemble a tent with a print that lady miss kier would've worn in the "groove is in the heart" video....that all the while traps heat like a locked car in the summer.

baby bond has created a beautiful, minimal cotton jersey hooter hider in chic solids (charcoal, chocolate, black, navy $35) that comfortably crosses your chest like a simple baby sling with a small opening for your breast.   they have 3 different styles, one of which (see photo above) can cover your breasts for top of shirt nursing or can cover your post baby belly for those who prefer to lift their shirt to nurse (see photo below. your own shirt covers your breasts in this set up).

check them all out here.

Friday, August 20, 2010

tres chic custom co-sleeping!

i love love love this little custom co-sleeping roll-away bed that interior designer david kaihoi made for his daughter.  it is so genius!  i recently stumbled across it in house beautiful's "is small the new big?" issue this summer.  what i love most is that kaihoi proudly displayed that his daughter co-sleeps with him and his wife.  ok, fine, they live in a postage stamp-sized (yet fabulous) new york city apartment and would not be able to actually wear clothes from the closet next to the bed if it didn't roll away, but at least he showed it in the photo---so kudos to him!!

my 200th post...woohoo!!

i am only a couple of weeks away from my one-year-old birthday here at baby manual and now have 200 posts under my belt...phew!!

Friday, August 13, 2010

what if your kid asks if you smoked pot?

ask them to define when exactly that they're talking about?

have you asked your pediatrician about this one yet?  we have, and our son is only 20-months-old.  have you tossed this one around at a dinner party?  the last time we did, we learned that our friend was mixing a perfect dry martini by the age of 12 every night to serve his doctor father when he walked in the door.  the same father that busted him for smoking cigarettes and said," if you want to smoke, then you can only do it if you do it in front of me."  his father smoked.  that took care of that.

i always figured that i was never interested in pot, because i knew that my parents smoked it.  i'm seeing a pattern here.  should we parents just all partake in booze and drugs and then our kids won't think it's cool?....they will rebel by not doing drugs instead of doing them.'s a thought.

should i be more concerned in the future about walking by "the green easy" marijuana dispensary shop around the corner with my 5-year-old and him asking me what they sell?

if you're curious how in the heck you'll handle this one with your kids, you may wanna check out this quick-read new york times article.

photos via here and here.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

"good" plastic snack cup

i have tried my fair share of small metal mugs, and sometimes small glass mason jars, full of snacks for my son.  as you might imagine, most of the food ends up on the floor, since there is no lid in this scenario.  so it's time for plastic.  bummer.  these are the best snack cups ---sorry, snack traps--- i could find and wanted to share.  they are bpa, phthalate, pvc, latex free.   but of course!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

mason jar sippy cup

i have dailycandy to thank for this one.  the email newsletter they sent today had a great sippy cup called eio glass kids cup ($15) that is a glass mason jar with silicon sleeve (non-bpa, etc) and top.  it's cool too, because new-drinkers can learn how to properly drink from a cup instead of sucking a built-in straw or other device like some other sippy cups.  purchase it here.

reuse it on your own 8 oz mason jar.  all parts are dishwasher safe.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

beau-tee-ful organic fashion for mom.

just when i thought i might have to gag myself with a spoon at the sight of all the current barfarama 80's inspired fashion, a lovely friend (thanks, melissa!) shared the most refreshing and amazing organic line of clothing with me recently.   it's called mika organic, and you can gaze upon it here.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

natural birth control

ever since getting off the pill just prior to getting pregnant, i have been contemplating never going back on.  not because i aspire to be michelle duggar, but because what was i thinking taking synthetic hormones for so long?!  there are many health risks associated with the pill and the patch.

the question at hand is, what are the best natural birth control options? well, dr. mercola sent me a lovely little email with an article just this week and answered all my questions....i love when he does that.  ok, the email wasn't just to me, but he did read my mind.

an excerpt from the "natural family planning techniques" portion of the article:

"Ovu-Tech Method: The Ovu-Tech is an inexpensive hand-held mini-magnification lens about the size and shape of a lipstick holder that allows you to monitor your saliva for hormonal changes that indicate fertility."

read this previous post of mine for more info on the ovulation product mentioned above.

Monday, July 12, 2010

study : kids who spend time with dad are happier...

a recent new york times article excerpt:

"Dads may not have as many meaningful conversations with their kids, but they tend to roughhouse with them more than moms do, and research indicates that's important for kids’ development, too.

Mothers help children feel connected, anticipated and wanted.  Fathers teach them how to interact with others and how to control themselves when they feel their needs aren’t being met.”

Sunday, July 11, 2010

breastfeeding site on milk donation, induction for adoption, and more...

someone who means a whole heckuvalot to me, has had more challenges as a new mom than anyone i know personally.   i will not go into detail, but you'll have to trust me here.  one of her challenges, which we moms all have to some degree, has to do with breastfeeding.  she recently shared an amazing site with me called milk share.

it is a place that mothers who need, or want to give, donated breast milk can go to connect.  this site does not sell breast milk, but they help connect people in need.  in addition, they have extremely current and unique info (some of which i have not come across before) on the following breastfeeding topics and more:

supplemental nursing devices (photo above)
induction for adoption
nursing after surgery
building supply
freezing guidelines
choosing the right storage container
formula vs. breastmillk

Thursday, July 8, 2010

if you have a toddler, you're gonna need these...

speaking from experience here...

this past week in our house included a 3-hour visit to the er where my 20-month-old got stitches a 1/2 inch from his eye---and a few days later included a goose-egg bruise on the side of his head.

each incident happened in a flash with 1-6 adults around watching him. after 3 weeks away from home traveling, apparently it's time for childproofing round 2 (ding! ding!)....

anyway, my point here is that --- well there is more than one, but i'll focus on 2...

1. have a good first aid kit for your kid.  you may want one for the car too.

2. consider purchasing these reusable ice cubes today (i got mine at world market)...they are a god send for treating a small injury!!  they are hard and stay cold like an ice cube.  give your kid a couple to hold on to to busy his hands and distract him from the one that you're holding on his head.  trust me, when your child is scared, hurt and wailing, he will not let you hold a huge regular ice pack on a bump or cut... especially right next to his eye.

tylenol recall expanded--includes children's tylenol

read here for more info.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

feed baby breast milk bottle at the same time of day it was pumped.

that's right, recent studies show that nucleotides (structural units of dna), and other ingredients in breast milk, perform an important role in regulating a baby's sleep.  they suggest that you if you pump at night, label the stored milk with the time, and feed it to the baby at the same time of night on a later date.  read more here.

an excerpt:

"You wouldn't give anyone a coffee at night, and the same is true of milk – it has day-specific ingredients that stimulate activity in the infant, and other night-time components that help the baby to rest", explains S├ínchez.

photo via here.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

summer travels

sorry i've been m.i.a....i had hoped to write more while we were traveling these last couple weeks, but it didn't always happen.  i should be back on track this week!  i've missed you...

the best gift for someone that's having a baby soon...

if you know someone that's having a baby and planning on breast feeding, then i have a recommendation for the most important gift you can give them.  so far, nearly every new mother i know would have needed and appreciated this gift.  the gift is a local lactation specialist.

when you're sleep deprived and in new-motherhood haze and need guidance with breast feeding, then having a local lactation specialist's number is priceless.  even if breast feeding goes smoothly in the beginning, a new mom needs to know that baby's latch is correct and she needs info on how to avoid infections, deal with pumping, advice on weaning, and much more.  breast feeding does not always come naturally.  mothers need help.

i know i have posted on this before, but i feel really strongly about the subject.

if you need a local lactation specialist, please contact the la leche league (click on "find local support") and as a local leader for a reference.  they can guide you to specialists that do home visits.  your pediatrician may also be able to refer a lactation specialist.  ideally, a mother would need help in the first week.  usually, a specialist will meet with mom for 2-3 hours.  some charge hourly ($60+/hr) and some do a flat fee that puts them on call until weaning ($200+).  if you're in the los angeles area, i highly recommend jennifer goodson (818 400 9525).  she is a nurse and amazing lactation specialist at dr. jay gordon's office and does home visits.

photo via here.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

tummy tub is second best to being in the womb.

have you seen these?  they are a simply designed phthalate, bpa-free plastic bucket-looking bath, called a tummy tub, that originated in the netherlands.  you may be familiar with french obstetrician frederick leboyer's practices of immersing newborns into a small tub of warm water to soothe them after birth.  makes sense right?--since they just spent the last nine months in amniotic fluid.

check out tummy tub's site for cute newborns loving their baths. babies only need baths 2-3 times a week when they are first born---and soap is almost never necessary in the beginning.

we used a tummy tub four days after our son was born, and he loved it.  he was so chill in it (that's him at one month old in the pic above). the tub can accommodate a 2-year-old/35 lbs.  we only ended up using ours for a few months, since our son was very comfortable in a full bath tub with dad pretty early on.  i'd recommend buying it without the stool/stand (as shown below) at first, and see if you feel comfortable.

Monday, June 21, 2010

alternative vaccine schedule : and it starts at age 2

this is a very informative article written by cardiac surgeon donald w. miller, jr, md about vaccinations.  it isn't brand-spanking new, as it was written at end of 2004, but still absolutely rings true.   there is strong evidence for waiting until after your child turns 2 to start immunizing. also, dr. miller lists the order and time frame of the few vaccinations to get if you do choose to wait until age 2.  an excerpt :

"In humans, the most rapid period of brain development begins in the third trimester and continues over the first two years of extra uterine life. (By then brain development is 80 percent complete.) Until randomized controlled trials demonstrate the safety of giving vaccines during this time of life, it would be prudent not to give any vaccinations to children until they are two years old."

photo via here.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

co-sleeping questions answered : teleseminar with dr. james mckenna and api

on monday june 28th at 9pm est, attachment parenting international will be hosting a teleseminar called "settling the cosleeping controversy" with co-sleeping guru dr. james mckenna.

check out the list of some of the great planned questions and register here.  price is $19 for non-members.

if you're pregnant or a new parent, i highly recommend that you check this teleseminar out or read more on mckenna's studies here.  you may also want to review my co-sleeping and bed-sharing category.

photo via here.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

holy genius! : traveling toddler car seat stroller

don't you love when a $15 item solves all of your travel problems? well, traveling toddler makes this simple little strap that safely attaches your toddler car seat to a rolling piece of carry-on luggage.

i am here to say that i have used it, and it works!!!  and it's easy--wahoo!

i attached it curbside at the airport while glancing at the instructions in about 20 seconds.  your LATCH clips clip right onto it.

if you're going on vacation and want to bring your car seat, you have to buy this!  if you need a stroller for your destination, maybe just buy a really lightweight one like this or this.   believe me, carrying a small umbrella stroller over your shoulder through a terminal is much easier than a bulky car seat....

then, just check the car seat and stroller at the gate!  if you're worried about them getting messed up under the plane, get a couple of these for $13 each.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

best baby gates

geez, there are so many baby gates on the market.  where do you start?  well, fortunately, you have my ocd ass over here pouring over them all....

for basic doorwaysthese (photo above) are can be hands-free by just stepping on a pedal ($54)!  and no screws involved.

for large doorways or archways, try a combo of these ($89+) :

for odd-shaped spaces...we use one around the fireplace, try these ($129+):

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

when cancer leads to abrupt weaning....

ready to feel really extremely grateful and compassionate?  read this incredibly moving post about mothers that are forced to cut breast feeding short because of cancer treatments.  the post is on an awesome blog called blacktating (my new favorite blog name)--breast feeding news and views from a mom of color.

photo via here.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

soapbox : please don't buy bp gas

please...i'm begging you.  yes, they have more money than god, and it's hard to punish them immediately, but we have to start somewhere. what they have done, and been doing, is not ok.  imagine if this was happening in your backyard.

osha statistics show bp ran up 760 "egregious, willful" safety violations in the last few years.

sunoco had 8.

conoco-phillips had 8.

citgo had 2.

exxon had 1.

photos via here.

you too can be a walking billboard.

best $24 bucks i've spent lately.  they even have organic tees.

click here for all boycott bp tees in adult, baby, toddler, and dog sizes.

is someone you know addicted to their computer/email/iphone/internet?

a friend (thanks, heather!) sent a link to today's nyt article about the price we pay for being hooked on gadgets.  they follow a family that is struggling with unplugging and staying present.  there is also some great info on studies that have been done on how our brains may be evolving to accommodate all of the daily info that we take in from multiple sources at once (talking on the phone while instant messaging on your laptop with the t.v. on).  really interesting--

and i don't know about you, but i feel like i have to be really conscious about the choices i make as a parent, even with a toddler, regarding my child's interaction with technology.  i would love for my son to enjoy cracking open a book vs. powering up a kindle and building a fort in the yard vs. socially networking on facebook.  dare to dream...

photo via here.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

it's that time of year...what the heck kind of sunscreen is safe for my child?

by now, you know that i am not cool with loading up on chemicals whether it is what goes into my mouth or onto my body---or my child's for that matter.  last year, i went into ocd-research mode about sunscreen when we first took our then 3-month-old on a beach vacation.  well, after hours of reading, purchasing, etc, i was on the beach about to apply a little bit of the lotion to the only part of my son's skin that could see the light of day (i put the poor kid in a full swim "spacesuit") and read on the bottle that you should not put sunscreen on babies under 1-year-old.  ok, well so there's that.

basically, i vote to cover the kid up in a full body suit, swim socks, and a hat and stay in the shade when possible.  yes, i know i'm a nutter.  you see, i am not uber anti-sun, since it's good for producing vitamin d in our bodies,  but i AM somewhat anti-sunscreen.  i just don't trust what's in most sunscreens.

but, of course, you HAVE to put some sunscreen on exposed delicate body parts, so for that the best i have found is mercola's because it has 2 main natural mineral ingredients : titanium dioxide and zinc oxide.  the additional ingredients are also from nature.  mercola makes a spf 15, 30, and 50, plus he has some good combo offers with natural bug repellants.

photo via here.

a little more groovy art...i can't resist.

the above and below art by paulofnavarone on the uk etsy site made me giggle like i haven't in quite some time.  leave it to the brits.  and ok, so maybe the one below isn't quite appropriate for a kid's room, but come on....

and these cut paper print maps below by famillesummerbelle on the french etsy site are soooo lovely.  be sure to bust one out on a street corner and ask a local for directions.  her very visual blog is fantastic too!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

groovy art for kids' rooms

man, these prints by nyc artist ida pearle are just so great looking.   you can have her do a custom one ($98) of your child's name with his specified hair and skin tone.  or you can buy a set of the alphabet letter cards for $44.  love em!