There are so many new things to plan for and learn about when becoming a parent. Many of us find that despite our many years of schooling, training, college degrees and work experience, we are often at a loss at this new juncture in our lives.
One very critical step in this process is establishing the proper setting for your growing family. Suddenly apartment hunting is complicated by so many new considerations that never occurred to you before. Here are some helpful tips to think about during your search.
Create a check list and begin researching answers to several important questions which will ultimately affect your life:
__ Are there local day care centers?
__ Where is the closest hospital and are there good pediatricians in the neighborhood?
__ Are you close to public transportation? Running around town with a stroller is a whole new ball game.
__ What about nearby playgrounds and kids’ programs? Are there other kids to play with?
__ How close are you to a local park or green space to introduce your child to nature and picnics?
__ What about local restaurants and shopping when you finally get some “me” time or schedule a date night?
Once you have answers to your questions and prioritized your criteria, you hone in on a neighborhood that works for you. As you look through listings for apartments in your price range, try to avoid broker fees. If you are a pet owner, don’t forget to filter your search based on pet-friendly apartments, though you may find your list narrowing significantly.
At this point in the process, there is often a moment of truth, where you see what kind of value is offered on your budget. You may find yourself trading square footage for rent budget. But don’t undermine the amount of space that the new little one in your life will require, including the crib, changing table, stroller, dresser, play area and toy chest. Before you know it, that little one will grow up and need plenty of space to run around, as will the next sibling that inevitably follows. Ideally, you want to find an apartment, or at the very least, a community where your family can expand over a long stretch of time.
It may sound like a harrowing task, but fortunately, there are still plenty of great apartment homes for growing families in the city.
Information provided by Peter Cooper Village / Stuyvesant Town
Honey is an all-natural, versatile ingredient that can easily transition between the kitchen, gym and bathroom vanity. This one-ingredient wonder is as pure as it gets and it’s delivered straight from the bees to you.
Americans consume approximately 1.3 pounds of honey per person annually, and they are finding more and more uses for this natural ingredient daily. Whether mixing it into sweet or savory dishes, adding spoonfuls to tea and other beverages, or drizzling it over biscuits, toast and muffins, consumers are realizing the uniqueness and versatility of honey.
Honey is one of the few back-to-basic ingredients that you can incorporate into your daily routine, using it as a kitchen staple, an energy booster, a beauty aid and a cough suppressant. Honey is an ingredient that you can feel good about using and there are countless ways to take advantage of one of life’s simplest pleasures.
Honey’s versatility is endless. Discover what it can do for you…
Honey’s unique properties and range of flavor profiles make it the perfect ingredient to inspire any recipe. Honey also provides balance to any dish, complementing and enhancing a variety of foods and flavors, both sweet and savory.
Not only is honey pure and natural, but it also attracts and retains moisture, qualities that can help keep skin hydrated and glowing. According to a double-blind clinical study to determine the effects of honey and moisturizers on skin conducted by an independent laboratory, honey was shown to effectively moisturize the skin.
With a long history of being a sweet treat for the skin, beauty manufacturers have utilized honey’s skin moisturizing benefits by using it in everything from hand lotions and moisturizers to bar soaps and bubble bath elixirs. Just add a little honey to your normal moisturizing routine to provide a homemade alternative to store-bought products and reap the benefits of this liquid gold. For some extra pampering, try whipping up a simple beauty recipe for a do-it-yourself (DIY) luxurious spa treatment.
Honey is a great alternative to the commonly used dextromethorphan (DM), which is not recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics or the American College of Chest Physicians for children under 6 years of age. According to a recent study, just a small dose of honey given before bedtime provided the greatest improvement of nighttime cough and sleep difficulty in children over one year of age compared to DM and no treatment.
Information provided by National Honey Board
So it’s time to choose a pediatrician. It’s a pretty important decision. After all, this is your child’s health. The person you will call every time they get sick or have a mishap. The #1 source for advice on nutrition, vaccinations and development. The doctor they will see for, potentially, the next 20 years of their life.
No pressure, right?
Choosing your child’s pediatrician can seem stressful or overwhelming, and there are many factors to consider. Fortunately, you have plenty of resources available to aid you in your decision including: friends, family, neighbors, as well as trusted books and online sources. We’ve compiled our own list of the top 5 things to look for when choosing your child’s pediatrician. The alliteration was (almost) unintentional:
There are health resources and specialists your family may need outside of the regular check-ups. Fortunately, there are quite a few practices that provide these services in-house at least once or several times a week. While you’re breastfeeding, for instance, an in-house lactation consultant can be an invaluable source of advice and support. As your child grows dietitians and nutritionists can offer you a game plan for your child’s nutritional health. Does the practice hold information sessions for specific issues? Having these resources under one roof can offer you convenience and peace of mind.
Was it difficult to schedule a first consultation? When you arrive, is the waiting room packed? While a busy office may be a sign of a great doctor, it may also mean tough appointment scheduling. Arm yourself with questions for the staff: how far in advance do I need to schedule visits? What happens after the doctor’s office closes? Is there an on-call nurse or physician? You should also take your own schedule under consideration. Do you need after-school or evening hours? Weekends? Walk-in hours? Make a list of these questions and bring them with you to the first meeting.
No app, website, or technology is ever going to replace the office visit. What these services can do is greatly enhance the communication you have with your child’s doctor in between these visits. When interviewing potential pediatricians you need to ask yourself what type of parent you are. If the ability to schedule visits online, access health records from a secure portal, or even just shoot the doctor a quick message is a convenience you want, then make sure your doctor is at least open to these modes of communication. Remember, even if your pediatrician uses online tools, spend some time chatting with them about proper usage. Physicians have to follow privacy guidelines and some activities that seem second nature to us – sending pictures via text for example – may violate these policies.
In 2012 alone the American Academy of Pediatrics made important new recommendations about vaccine schedules, breastfeeding, and circumcision. These are all stories you may hear about when you switch on the news or peruse your Twitter feed, but you also want assurance that your pediatrician is constantly tuned into this data. Remember, your child could potentially see this same doctor from age 0 -21. Does the pediatrician offer any news updates to parents in the form of online newsletters, mailings, or phone calls? Are they present on a blog or social media site? Take a good look around the doctor’s office, and check for postings with messages for parents.
What is your opinion on certain vaccinations? What about breastfeeding and formula? The ideal pediatrician will work with you to discuss treatment plans that work with your lifestyle, as long as those treatments directly benefit your child’s health. Your child’s healthcare should involve dialogue as frequently as possible. The doctor should be willing to listen, respect your opinions, and discuss options. But keep in mind: this ideal pediatrician should also be willing to tell you when your notions are wrong (gently, of course, and with the facts to back it up).
Don’t be afraid to meet with several doctors before you choose the one that is right for you. But it’s important to remember that your intuition will be your best guide. Whether it takes days or weeks, ultimately you will know on your own when you find the right doctor for your child. There are so many great pediatricians out there, and armed with the right information, you’ll find the perfect one for you.
Information provided by pingmd
Summer is filled with fun outdoor activities, but these pastimes don’t come without a cost to your little one’s skin. In fact, it only takes two to three blistering sunburns as a child to potentially double the risk of melanoma later in life, according to The Skin Cancer Foundation.
Although we can blame the sun for more than 90 percent of all cases of skin cancer, 33 percent of us don’t protect our skin regularly. You can help protect your children from the sun’s rays year-round by teaching the importance of proper skin care with these practical tips:
Protect your child’s skin early. The sun can be especially harsh on infants, whose sensitiveskin is easily burned. As children grow, their thin, tender and sensitive skin becomes thicker and more protective. If baby’s
skin – her biggest organ – is damaged, it lessens her ability to fight infection and regulate temperature.
Ideally, baby should not be exposed to direct sunlight during her first several months of life. If avoiding direct sun exposure is impossible, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommends protecting baby’s exposed skin (even babies under six months of age) with a broad-spectrum sunscreen that offers at least SPF 15 and UVA and UVB protection. UVA rays – known as the “aging rays” – lead to wrinkles, spots and skin cancer. UVB rays – known as “burning rays” – sizzle the top layer of the skin and increase the risk of skin cancer.
Choose physical sunscreens. For a child’s sensitive skin, use a physical sunscreen that contains zinc oxide and/or titanium dioxide – key ingredients that offer the safest level of protection and the least risk of skin irritation. A physical sunscreen coats the skin, deflects UV rays and protects almost immediately after application. By contrast, the skin must absorb chemical sunscreen in order for it to be effective – chemical ingredients may increase risk of irritation and delay protection against UV rays if less than 20-30 minutes have elapsed since application.
Protect against irritants. Although manufacturers are more aware of consumers’ concerns about potentially harmful ingredients in sunscreen, many ingredients in sun products have the potential to irritate a child’s sensitive skin. Look for lotions without oxybenzone, phthalates, lanolin, mineral oil, petroleum or waxes to minimize potential irritants in sunscreen.
Because baby’s mouth may come in contact with areas of skin where sunscreen has been applied, safe, non-toxic physical sunscreens are the obvious choice. Chemical sunscreens contain non-ingestible ingredients that should only be used on older children.
More on Sun Safety when I see you all at the New York Baby Show! I will be speaking from the drugstore.com booth on Saturday at 1:00 p.m. and will be happy to answer any questions you might have. Until then, protect yourselves and your little ones from the sun’s harmful rays, and make sure your breast-fed babies are taking a daily vitamin D supplement!
Nothing may be more upsetting for parents than when their baby is having trouble breathing. Nasal aspirators are an important part of helping your baby breathe easier, sleep better and be healthier.
Aspirators work by using suction to draw stagnant mucus out of the baby’s nasal canal. Stagnant mucus is a breeding ground for bacteria which can lead to colds, sinus or ear infections, and bronchitis. There are a variety of respiratory problems in babies which can be exacerbated by stagnant mucus so the best idea is to clean your baby’s nose regularly.
When you have a stuffy nose you reach for tissues and blow your nose every time it gets hard to breathe. When you are a baby and you can’t breathe, you do what comes naturally – cry. That’s what makes a nasal aspirator so important. You can use it every time your baby’s nose becomes blocked, clearing their breathing passages and helping your baby rest easier.
If used correctly a nasal aspirator is completely painless. Your baby may be initially surprised by the noise of the vacuum, but they won’t be feeling any discomfort. In fact, just the opposite. As the nasal aspirator clears their nasal passages of stagnant mucus they will immediately feel the effects of being able to breathe easier.
Unlike certain medications, there are no harmful side effects of using a nasal aspirator and you can use it as often as you might blow your own nose. Also, when cleaned regularly, a nasal-aspirator will remain sterile and completely harmless to your baby.
Information provided by Baby-Vac
In recent years, quinoa has become a new hot ingredient, from pies to salads, and now baby food. We wanted to find out just why it’s so good for mom, dad and baby…
There are several major benefits of quinoa. While it varies among different samples, quinoa has an average protein content that is twice that of rice and contains all of the essential amino acids needed to support protein synthesis and growth. The amino acid profile of quinoa has been compared to that of milk. Quinoa has been found to have substantially higher amounts of the essential amino acid lysine than most grains.
Another benefit of quinoa is its higher content of healthy oils, including polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fatty acids. Specifically, quinoa is superior in providing mostly linoleic acids and oleic acids, and some alpha-linolenic acid. These fatty acids are important for an infant’s brain development.
A healthy digestive system is also essential in an infant’s growth. Quinoa has high dietary fiber content; an important aid to digestion. High levels of potassium, magnesium, and phosphorus are also present. These nutrients play an important role in fluid balance, nerve and muscle function, and bone health.
Finally, quinoa contains high amounts of polyphenolic compounds. These compounds act as antioxidants in the body and protect the integrity of cells as well as provide protection against illnesses and chronic diseases.
Information provided by Nurturme
Swimming is not luxury for just a few; it is a life saving necessity for everyone! Everyone has known of someone who can’t swim and/or has a fear of water. Surprisingly, if you ask them why they’ve never learned how to swim, most will say, “my parents don’t swim”, “my parents were afraid I would drown”, “my parent had a fear of water and passed it on to me”, or “I had an accident involving water and became afraid.”
So how do you, as a parent, not pass your fear of water to your child?
- It starts with your little ones bath time. Pour water over your child’s head from the start. Smile, clap, be happy and give lots of kisses as the child experiences this feeling of water running down their face. Don’t let any crying discourage you. If you continue these rituals at every bath time, your child will eventually stop crying and will do these rituals along with you.
- Remember, babies lived in water before they born, so being submerged in water was all they knew. Most people are astonished to find out that babies will actually hold their breath under water. In baby swimming classes, you learn how to submerge your child in a safe manner. You will be taught to give your child a cue (1, 2, 3 or Ready, Set, Go) and submerge them for 2 seconds. Missy Franklin, Olympic Gold Medal Swimmer, went to these classes. Her mom spoke of how this was done in a class with Missy when she was an infant and she never cried.
- If you decide to attend a swimming class, your child will sense your fear. First know these classes are held in very shallow water where you have your footing. Knowing how to swim is not a requirement for you and your little one to have some fun. Smile, kiss, hug and laugh during the class to ease your child, so they can know it’s safe to be there.
- At any age, talk to your child about you not knowing how to swim and how you wish you had learned. Use words of encouragement and explain to them you want them to experience all the different things in the world and never be afraid to learn something new and different.
As an adult, you can overcome your fear of water with the right instructor, proper teaching and supportive swimming company. Swimming is an activity that most of you will do as a family on vacation, in the summer or as a recreational sport during the cold months. Have your child learn to love the water from the beginning. They will learn to not fear the water but love and respect it.
Information provided by Swim Swim Swim I Say
Have you ever been curious abut the idea of casting your baby’s most precious moments? As we learned, it’s not an intimidating process, it’s gentle on your baby and the end result is beautiful.
Baby hand and feet casting can begin as early as 3 days into the baby’s birth. Many parents cast their babies hands and feet to capture how small their hands and feet are. And the majority of those parents continue to cast throughout the child’s first year to capture the quick growth.
The process of casting is quick – each hand and/or foot is placed one at a time into a mixture of alginate for 45 seconds. Alginate is used by dentists to take moulds of teeth inside mouths. The baby can be sleeping, feeding or awake throughout the process. The chosen casting limb can freely move around in the mixture. After setting in, the mould will simply slip off the limb. Plaster is then poured into the mould and from that either frame pieces are created or bronze-resin paper weights. The finished product will capture every wrinkle and crease on the baby’s limb.
This information was shared by Cast In Time
A chiropractor’s (and father’s) experience with a baby carrier:
Last September, my wife and I welcomed our first child into the world. Being a parent, I wanted to give him the best possible start in life. I had done all kinds of research – reading articles, books, and blogs. I talked to parents, professors, and fellow chiropractors. I foolishly felt somewhat prepared for this whole parenting thing. Being a chiropractor, I knew the benefits of “holistic parenting” with our child. Finding ourselves in the all-natural parenting world, babywearing was something that my wife and I both enthusiastically supported. We both understood the benefits of babywearing (including benefits to our child’s structural, physiological, and neurological development) over carrying our son in an infant car seat or pushing him in a stroller all the time. With that in mind, we decided to make babywearing a large part of our parenting style.
The more we read and thought about it, the more we realized the importance of me, as the father, wearing our son. For forty-ish weeks baby has been floating around in a swimming pool of mom’s physiology. They are so closely connected. Dad, on the other hand, aside from possibly talking to baby while inside mom, has not had time to bond or connect with baby at all. Babywearing gives dads a perfect opportunity to bond and connect with their babies. The baby can hear dad’s heartbeat, voice, breathing patterns, feel his energy and emotions, and move around with him. All of these things not only help develop baby’s brain but also help build bonds between baby and carrier (i.e dad). Studies have shown that baby benefits from babywearing alone and has the chance to benefit much more when the father is involved in the babywearing as well, especially with baby boys. Until you can play, roughhouse, and wrestle with your kids, babywearing is the best way to connect, bond, and help them grow.
When my son was about two months old, after more research into baby carriers and how to wear your baby, I discovered the soft structured carrier (SSC). I could not believe I had not come across these carriers sooner, and I was amazed at the simplicity! Instead of having to be a boy scout to make all of the right loops and knots to form a perfect carrier for my baby, I could snap two buckles and loosen or tighten a few straps in seconds. Also, with my big boy’s weight being evenly distributed between both shoulders and my waist, the SSC made me feel like he was lighter than he actually was and it was great for my back.
Although I think all of the different babywearing options are great for baby’s development, whether you go with a wrap, sling, or SSC, babywearing is only effective if you actively participate and work it into your lifestyle. I am a guy, and we like things quick and easy. That is essentially the description of the soft structured carrier. No instruction manual needed – load up and tighten down. It is comfortable, durable, and secure. The soft structured carrier allows me to carry my son wherever I go, giving us great bonding time together and fulfilling my goal of holistic parenting.
(Ergobaby for New York Baby Show)
It seems as though sporting a baby bump has become the latest trend in Hollywood! Here are our top 10 favorite ones:
10. Holly Madison
The former Playboy bunny is expecting her first child with boyfriend Pasquale Rotella. We’ll see if her little bunny will be running late to her Alice in Wonderland themed nursery soon, as Holly’s due date is in early March.
9. Jenna Dewan-Tatum
Although Mrs. Channing Tatum can be seen in the February issue of Esquire Magazine in a fitted corset, the Step Up actress is very much pregnant, expecting her first child later this year.
8. Malin Akerman
The 7 month pregnant Swedish-Canadian actress sure knows how to stay stylish! Malin stunned the red carpet crowd at the Learn.Build.Create presidential inauguration bash wearing this low neckline beaded dress. She is expecting her first child with husband Roberto Zincone.
7. Lara Stone
We may be used to seeing the model in Calvin Klein wear, but she still looks stunning sporting around her baby bump! Lara is expecting her first child with husband David Williams in May.
6. Busy Philips
Cougar Town? More like Oh Mama Town! The Screen Actors Guild Award actress is expecting her second child in June with husband Marc Silverstein.
5. Amber Rose
A wedding with fiance Wiz Khalifa isn’t the only thing this actress is planning. Her due date is set to be on the 24th this month! This will be the first child for the couple.
4. Kristen Bell
Kristen starred in the movie “Hit and Run” with her fiance, Dax Shepard, last year. Perhaps they’ll make a sequel with their baby next year? The couple is expecting their first child, rumored to be a boy, in the spring.
3. Jessica Simpson
It’s been less than a year since her daughter Maxwell was born, but Jessica is ready for baby number two with fiance Eric Johnson. The couple are expecting a boy this time, with the rumored name Ace, this spring.
2. Kim Kardashian
The Kardashain Klan continues to grow with Kim and boyfriend’s Kanye West’s little tot. This will be Kimye’s first child together, with an expected due date in July.
1. Kate Middleton
After a rough early pregnancy where the Duchess discovered she had hyperemesis gravidarum which hospitalized her for 3 days, Kate is now beaming in public with her baby bump. The royal couple is expecting their first child in July.