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Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!


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Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Teething 101: Desperate Times Call for Desperate Measures!

Cue the Jaws music... those teeth are coming! (Haha I guess 'Jaws' works on 2 levels!) ;) It's hard to know when your baby is about to pop a tooth, but you probably have a good idea when there's one trying to make it's debut. Aside from an increase in irritability, there are other signs you can look out for that indicate your baby may be starting to teeth. According to IncredibleInfant.com, there are 9 'sure fire' signs your bumpkin has chompers on the way:

1. You actually see and/ or feel a tooth (well duh) lol

2. Tons of drool

3. Chewing & chomping on anything & everything!

4. Coughing on drool (due to an increase in saliva)

5. Baby is grumpier/ crankier

6. Sleep becomes a thing of the past (noooooooo!)

7. Baby pulls on ears (as if s/ he has an ear infection)

8. Baby develops a red rash around mouth/ lower face- aka rash beard (again due to increased drooling)

9. Blood in the mouth (what!?!) due to blood blisters forming under the gums, rising to the surface & popping- don't worry, apparently this is painless, just not pretty to look at

For a more in- depth look at the above list, check out Incredible Infant's article here.

To get a better idea of what teeth to expect when, check out the chart below:


Image Source: http://www.incredibleinfant.com/teething-baby/signs-of-teething/



Like a hangover, it's great to know what the symptoms are but a bit of an anomaly to relieve the problem. ;) A lot of my friends- including myself- have youngsters in various stages of teething. And we all share the same collective outlook: a very sarcastic 'yippee'. Since teething usually lasts until your child is 2- 3 years old, you know you're in for a bit a wild ride, albeit a long one. And as the adage goes, every child is different. So some inevitably will handle their pearly whites popping up better than others.

Since there's been so much conversation in my life about this topic lately, I thought I'd try to collect & narrow down all of the discussion, tips, & advice (aka survival tactics!) on the subject. So below I've outlined some of the suggestions I've heard for soothing your youngster during teething, ranging from traditional tried & true remedies to new & natural. Hopefully you'll find one or more suggestions that will work for your family. :)

Teethers


Image Source: 
http://fabbabygear.com/index.php?main_page=product_info&cPath=233_165_467&products_id=1367

These puppies come in all shapes, sizes, colours, styles..... I think you get it. The idea is that your chomp monster can take their frustration out on one of these to help sooth their gums and help the tooth break through. Whether you go with the cult favourite, Sophie the giraffe (above, approx. $20- $25), a water- filled (below, prices vary) or solid teether, or any of the countless other options, you should have no problem finding some that work for you. Some food for thought: the water filled versions are meant to be refrigerated, since the coolness is supposed to help soothe the gums. However, I know of at least one Mom whose little one prefers room temperature or warm teethers (especially Mommy's fingers!). Also consider the texture of the teether; again some babies may find the bumpiness more irritating than soothing. As always, it comes down to what your child prefers.

Image Source: http://www.satarababy.com/product/natursutten-fish-teether


Other things you may want to consider are where the teethers are made and/ or if they are painted, and the materials they're made out of. According to this amazing blog I found while researching this post, Gimmethegoodstuff.org, you should avoid teethers made in China- good luck, but they do exist- especially those with painted surfaces, since the paint could contain lead.

If you decide to go with a plastic version, look for ones that are BPA and phthalate free (teethers that go in the freezer typically are made with PVC plastic containing phthalates). However, some make the argument that any of the plastic versions are a no- go, since plastic is known to affect hormones in the body2. It's a tough call for any parent, especially when you've got a youngster in pain. If you're wary of the plastic options, I have some alternative suggestions below.

Image Source: http://www.inhabitots.com/maple-teether-by-camden-rose/

Natural wood teethers, like the Camden Rose teether (above, approx. $10) are a good option. The hard surface gives baby relief without you having to worry about chemicals. You can also purchase beeswax to help keep them battle- ready for your lil one.

Another option is to store rolled wet face clothes in a container in the fridge. The nice thing about this option is you have complete control of what goes in your youngster's mouth and don't have to worry about chemicals, etc. Plus, the soft material could be just what your baby needs to chomp on, since they can vary the relief from a soft gum massage to a good ol' chomping. I have heard of people using frozen cloths, but was advised by our local health unit to avoid doing so because tiny ice particles can shave off and hurt babies' gums (and lordy knows, we don't want to add to the problem!). Again, as the parent, trust your instincts and just be aware of what the pros and cons are of various options. 

Natural Teething Relief

Image Source: 
http://alphamom.com/parenting/baby/amber-teething-necklaces-helpful-or-hype/


Amber necklaces: I'm sure you've seen these everywhere. There is some debate whether these are more fashion statement than effective teething soother, but I know plenty of Moms who swear by their success. While your child wears the necklace (or bracelet/ anklet), they do not chew on them to gain relief. The science behind this is the succinic acid, which is known to have healing abilities, including pain relief1. Amber contains a high concentration of the acid, which is released in trace amounts when your child wears it (the warmth of their body is what aids in the release of the succinic acid). Please note: you should remove the necklace for sleep; some parents will wrap it around their child's ankle & using footed pjs will help hold it in place. If you'd like to check out a local company that offers quality amber necklaces, check out Ned & Macs.

Cost: $10- $20

Image Source: http://well.ca/products/boiron-camilia-teething-relief-30d_8111.html

Several of the Moms I know have used Camilia drops with some success. I had never heard of them before having Ari, but since I am all for as natural an approach wherever possible was glad to hear such a thing existed. These drops are free from additives like colouring & flavour and come in pre- measured doses. You can administer doses in intervals of as little as 15 minutes, with a maximum of 12 doses per day; you should see results within the first 33. I also like that this product is great to use leading up to bedtime and/ or as your baby gets fussier. When you start to notice your baby getting irritable, you can administer the first dose and continue until bedtime as needed to help sooth them. One of my friends has used this technique and felt it was the best use of the drops, since you could easily go through a box in a little over 2 days otherwise. 

Cost: approx. $16 for 30 doses

Image Source:
 http://well.ca/products/hylands-baby-teething-tablets_50764.html?gclid=CO7ynpCduroCFeYWMgodOhMADA

Another product tried & tested by some Moms I know are the Hyland's Baby Teething Tablets. With these, you place 2- 3 of the soft tablets under baby's tongue 4 times a day; you can also dissolve them in water to make them easier to administer. According to the company's website, the tablets can also help your little one go to sleep since their pain has been relieved. Again, parent's can administer a 'nighttime dose' to help get the youngster soothed & settled ( 1 tablet every 2 hours for 6 hours). Another natural option worth a try. :)

Cost: approx. $11- $12 for 135 tablets

Traditional Teething Relief


For those of you who remain wary of natural remedies, there are several go- to options that have been around as long as I can remember. Heck, I remember my Mum using this stuff when I was a kid.

Image Source: https://www.valuevalet.ca/TYLENOL-INFANTS-Drops-White-Grape-Flavour-Dye-Free-15-ml-45594.html

To start, there's good ol' Tylenol & Advil infant drops (among other name brand options(. These are usually appropriate for babies aged 0- 24 months. Aside from teething relief, they help with other ailments, including cold & cough symptoms, fever & ear ache relief. Medicines like these are usually in a flavoured liquid form administered with a dropper, so are parent & baby user friendly. The dose you use is determined by the age of your child, so check the recommended dose on the box.  (There's also a dosage calculator on the Tylenol website). 

Cost: approx. $6- $7 for 15 ml

One last piece of info I'd like to share: While researching products for this post I found out that you should avoid buying medicine that contains benzocaine, a common ingredient in gel and liquid pain relief products. In fact, one of the products that I was going to include got ousted from this post because it contains benzocaine. According to WebMD, among other sources, "benzocaine is associated with a rare but serious condition called methemoglobinemia, which greatly reduces the amount of oxygen carried through the bloodstream. In the most severe cases, the condition can be life-threatening". 

As always, it is important to do your research, talk to other Moms, and trust your instincts, It can be hard to find something that works to help your little one (and you!) get through the challenge and pain of teething. I hope this post offers some insight & suggestions that help. And when all else fails, indulge in a good bottle of wine! 

Please note: I did my best to offer an unbiased opinion on the suggestions made here. My main source for recommendations came from other Moms who have tried the products with varying degrees of success. I hope this post serves to help outline what options are available, and hopefully offer some new suggestions. As with all things related to babies & youngsters, trust your instincts and if you have any concerns, speak with your GP, naturopath, etc. We're always going to hear a variety of opinions that don't always agree with our own. I just hope to help by offering some information in one place as a  starting point. :)

Want to try some of these products for yourself? You can find some of the products mentioned in this post online here.

Sources:
1. http://blog.bellanimaternity.com/index.php/2011/02/28/how-do-amber-teething-necklaces-work/
2. http://gimmethegoodstuff.org/safe-product-guides/teethers
3. http://well.ca/products/boiron-camilia-teething-15d_22663.html?gclid=CIDV7IOZuroCFStgMgodRF4Acw

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Happy Tuesday!









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Monday, October 28, 2013

Mommy Date: Pumpkin Patch!

Last week a group of us Moms took the afternoon to go to the pumpkin patch- plus it gave us an excuse to put our kiddies in their Halloween costumes! There are a variety of farms within a half hour that have pumpkin patches and various activities for the family. We took a vote and decided on Krause Berry Farms (largely influenced by their on- site winery & infamous fresh waffles- need I say more???). 


We started off on the spacious patio sipping on hot chocolate & coffee and snacking on aforementioned waffles. You really have to go there to appreciate how amazing those waffles smelled- cue the Homer Simpson drooling face & you get the picture. 


Once we finished indulging we explored some of what this beautiful venue has to offer...






Their shop is AMAZING. Full of all kinds of goodies ranging from baked goods, jams, salsas, fresh produce, candy, ice cream, and housewares, to name a few. When you walk in it's hard to focus on one thing because there's so much to look at! 




The pumpkin patch sits on the southern part of the property, next to the barley maze (yes, barley!). It's the perfect location for a  photo op and of course us Moms had to try and coordinate a group photo with the lil monkeys! As you can probably guess it's hard to prop 10+ babies in Halloween costumes up against pumpkins and each other without a disorganized domino effect of slipping, tipping, and all the chaos that follows! ;) We spent more time scrambling to organize the kiddies than we did taking the actual photos. Ah the things us Moms try to do for the sake of a photo. In the end we got a selection of photos, each with a different child crying, flopping, and/ or looking in a completely different direction. Anne Geddes we are not. 


This was truly a fun way to spend an afternoon with friends. While we behaved and passed on the winery (will power!), this farm is a beautiful place to visit year round. If you have family visiting from out of town, I'd add this to the list of places to take them.

For more info on Krause Berry Farms, check out their website: http://www.krauseberryfarms.com/

Address: 6179 248 St, Langley, BC V4W 1C3

Phone: (604) 856-5757

Here's a list of other farms that offer family activities (it's also worth it to check out these farms for 
Christmas trees & activities, and field trip info): 

Aldor Acres
Address: 8301 252 St, Langley, BC
Phone: (604) 888- 2403
Address: 18507 20 Ave, Surrey, BC

Phone: (604) 542- 1202

Address: 12900 Steveston Highway, Richmond, BC

Phone: (604) 274- 0522







Sunday, October 27, 2013

Happy Sunday!

Hope you all have a cozy day! <3


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Saturday, October 26, 2013

4 Month Shots



Since my young lady was up for her 4 month shots (already?!) this week I thought I'd put the info together for anyone needing it. I've spoken with several Moms and had mixed reviews about how their kiddies handled them- but this is to be expected. 

Like the 2 month shots, kiddies get the following:

DTaP-HB-IPV-Hib
(diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, hepatitis B, polio, Haemophilus influenzae type b)

Pneumococcal conjugate ‡

Rotavirus

Following the shots your baby may cry and be temperamental or bounce right back to themselves; some  may be drowsy & sleep for most of the rest of the day. I've known Moms who've experienced both ends of the extreme. If your little one doesn't handle the shots well, a cute remedy is to use rattle socks or attach light weight toys to their ankles (like the little velcro ones that wrap around handles) to encourage them to move their legs. A friend of mine's little guy didn't react well to his shots and she said this helped him feel better. 


Other common symptoms are slight swelling & redness surrounding the injection area. However, according to the Public Health Agency of Canada, if your child shows one or more of the following symptoms after their shots you should contact your doctor:


- has a fever above 40°C or 104°F
- has a seizure or convulsions (often associated with a very high fever)
- swelling worsening around the injection site
- 'unusually sleepy' or non responsive
Source: http://www.phac-aspc.gc.ca/im/iyc-vve/pgi-gpv/section6-eng.php

If you're unsure about how your baby is reacting, you can call 811 and speak with an RN. While they encourage you to speak with a doctor about anything of serious concern, they can help advise you. 

You can view the BC Immunization Schedule for kids 0- 6 here.

For more info on immunizations check out my post re. the 2 month shots

I hope your lil bumpkins do ok with their shots! I always plan for the worst (have that coffee on hand!) and hope for the best! I think as parents that's all we can do. :)

Friday, October 25, 2013

Amazing Mom Feature: Katrina Bergen




     This week's Amazing Mom is Katrina Bergen. Since 2006 Katrina has helped capture precious moments in the lives of families and their new additions with her business, Wee Piggies & Paws. Katrina takes the impressions of hands, feet, & paws and creates plaster casts that serve as a 3D souvenir & keepsake; clients can choose from a variety of options including ornaments and shadowboxes which incorporate photos. She also creates beautiful & unique jewellery cast out of silver using fingerprints & hand writing- the result is a personal piece that the receiver will cherish. 

      
      Katrina bought the franchise in order to stay home to raise her daughter and has since developed it into a successful enterprise that has grown with her family. What an amazing way to earn an income: help capture precious moments in time so parents can remember them long after their bumpkins are grown. I love that Katrina's work is so personal and how she puts her heart into her work. I hope this Amazing Mom makes you smile & helps remind you to cherish these precious (if not totally crazy!) days while they're here. 


1.    What kind of products and/ or services do you offer? 

     One of a kind custom keepsakes of your childs precious hand and foot prints. Shadowboxes, statues, fingerprint necklaces and shoe bronzing.


2.    What is the price point? 

      Starting as low as $25 but the average customer spends $300


3.    How long have you been operating and how did you start? 

      I started my business in 2006 after my daughter was born and I fell in love with my shadowbox so much that I bought the franchise!


4.    What is your favourite part of what you do? What is the biggest challenge? 

      I adore being invited into a persons life to capture such a precious moment in time. It is a true honour to be among family members at the hospital taking impressions of tiny hands and feet, that is the best part of my job. There are 2 things very challenging to me. The first is balancing family and work time and the second is doing bereavement castings. It is very difficult when a parent loses a child and I’m called to take castings. I’m so happy to be able to provide something a parent can remember their child by, but it is very hard on my heart.


5.    Any advice to other ladies/ moms looking to start their own business? 

      Don’t expect the moon. We are only human, do what you can but remember your priorities. The reason we want to start our own business is to stay at home and be with our kids, don’t ever forget that!



Katrina has generously offered a discount to The Pampered Baby readers! Mention this blog post with the purchase of a shadow box and receive your choice of a free ornament or $20 off! 

If you live in Delta or Richmond and are trying to find a job you can do from home, contact Katrina about her upcoming franchise purchase opportunity: delta@weepiggies.com




Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Yummy Mummy Recipe: Apple Chips!


This week I wanted to try making some healthy snacks. I've bought apple chips and really like them, but I find them to be expensive for what they are. For the same price I paid for a bag of apple chips I picked up a 5lb bag at Costco. That's a heck of a lot more bang for your buck. Not only were these inexpensive, they were ridiculously easy to make- I mean RIDICULOUSLY easy. So without further ado...


Ingredients:
- 4- 5 apples (I used gala)
- 2 tbsp cinnamon
- 1 tbsp sugar (I skipped it, but if you want a little more sweet blend some with the cinnamon)

Directions:

1. Preheat oven to 250 degrees
2. Wash apples & slice thinly- approx. 1/16" if you want them crispy or 1/8" if you like them chewy (like in trail mix)
3. Line baking sheets with parchment & lay apple slices in a single layer.
4. If using sugar, mix with cinnamon to taste & sprinkle over apples.
5. Pop in the oven for 2 1/2 hours, or until apples have reached the texture you desire.
6. Allow to cool & enjoy! 

I also made a naked batch without any cinnamon and they were delicious! It's also nice to mix a combo of naked & cinnamon apple chips- yummy! 

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Happy Tuesday!

Image Source: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/100275529175710538/

Milestone Moment: DIY Baby Grad Caps


Sooner or later we all have to face the truth: our lil bumpkins are growing up! And while they might not be graduating from high school or college tomorrow, there's plenty of other 'graduations' before them. Whether it's with a Mommy group like mine, daycare, preschool, etc, it's fun to celebrate the stages our little ones go through and remember these sweet moments for them.

One of my amazing & talented friends Celine was kind enough to not only make these grad caps for all the Moms & babies graduating from our group, she took photos & created step- by- step instructions so I could show them here! Thank you Celine for always being so thoughtful & creative!


DIY: Baby Grad Caps

Supplies:



Poster Board Pieces:

Cut 1: 7"* 7" square for top of cap
Cut 2: 3"* 1.25" for headband bracket tabs
Cut 1: 19"* 2" for headband (make a notch cut 1.5" along one long edge)

Blue or pink yarn pieces:

Cut 1: 12" piece for tassel piece & knot
Cut 11: 4" pieces for tassel fringe & tie

Additional Supplies:

Scissors
Ruler
Pencil
Stapler with 6 staples per hat

Instructions:

Please note different colour paper was used for the step by- step instructions because black doesn't show up well in photos. 

1: Divide cap top diagonally and mark with a pencil. Poke hole through center of cap top for tassel.




2. Overlap headband strip matching edge to notch. Staple twice with smooth side of staples on inside of band so that child will not be scratched. For a more custom fit, try and adjust to fit child.



3. Bend headband brackets in half.


4. Staple headband brackets to either end of headband, make sure smooth side of staples are on the inside of the band. 



5. Staple brackets to hat cap, lining up each bracket to opposite corners. This time make sure to staple with the smooth side on the top of the cap, so it doesn't look noticeable in photographs.



6. Take 10 pieces of tassel fringe yarn. Tie them together at the halfway mark with longer piece of string.



7. With the last piece of fringe yarn, tie together 1/2" down. When the tassel is made with all one colour, the yarn and knots blend together. 



8.  Insert tassel through hole in cap top and tie knot. Top: Use a toothpick to help push ends through. 



9. Your final project should look something like this:


I hope you like this cute little project idea! I also thought it would be cute to write the date, occasion, & kiddie's age inside with a metallic Sharpie as a keepsake. :) Maybe frame in a shadow box with a photo of the occasion? It's as important to remember these moments as it is to enjoy them. :)









Sunday, October 20, 2013

Happy Sunday!

Thought this might make a few people smile! ;)

Image Source: http://www.pinterest.com/pin/412220172113973795/

Saturday, October 19, 2013

Yummy Mummy Recipe: Mongolian Beef

One of my friends told me about this recipe and raved about how good it was. Since it came so highly recommended I thought I'd give it a try. While this was delicious, I can't take credit for this recipe. All credit goes to Julie at tablefortwoblog.com.

Image Source: http://www.tablefortwoblog.com/2013/01/07/take-out-fake-out-mongolian-beef/


I served mine over brown rice and got 2 thumbs up from the Hubs. We've added this to the 'make again' list. :)

Check out the recipe here.



http://www.tablefortwoblog.com/2013/01/07/take-out-fake-out-mongolian-beef/

Friday, October 18, 2013

Amazing Mom Feature: Christina & Sarah- Sinful & Delicious Cupcakes



Ok ladies it's time to have our cake & eat it too! I am so glad to have come across this week's feature business because it's comprised of an amazing Mother- Daughter team who are turning their passion and time spent together into a beautiful, edible, delicious business venture! 

For the past 2 years, daughter Christina and Mom Sarah have been crafting beautiful cakes & cupcakes (check out their giant cupcakes!) from scratch, using wholesome ingredients- including homemade vanilla extract. There are so many things I love about this venture, but I really appreciate their dedication to simple & natural ingredients. As Christina says, "there is nothing better than real food and we are so happy we can provide that; we believe everyone deserves fresh, real, great tasting food". I couldn't agree more.

"100% self taught", these ladies are proof that if you have the vision, your work will speak for itself. Using their friends and families as willing guinea pigs, Christina and Sarah started turning their hobby into a money maker. They have even created their own flavours, not found anywhere else. Their work is stunning, and I hope you will join me in supporting this bourgeoning business. What better way to work, than by spending more time with your Mom?! Read on to get to know their business a little better...

What kind of products and/ or services do you offer? 


We offer Custom Cakes, Giant Cupcakes and Cupcakes all made from scratch using great quality ingredients. We use real fruit for our fruit fillings, we make our own Vanilla Extract using vanilla bean pods and we make our own pastry creams.

What is the price point? 

Prices all depend on size (how many people it needs to feed) Design/Difficulty and whether they would like fondant or iced.

How long have you been operating and how did you start? 

We have been doing this for a little under 2 years. My mom and I started it to spend more time together.

How did you decide what to do? 

We decided to give it a shot because it was something we really enjoyed to do. Something about putting a smile on the faces of the people we make the cakes etc for was soo worth it to us.

What is your favourite part of what you do? What is the biggest challenge? 

My favourite part? Honestly, everything. I love working with the clients and finding out their likes and dislikes and their visions. Designing the cakes and making them. Everything is awesome!!

Any advice to other ladies/ moms looking to start their own business? 

Do it. Have faith in yourself and never let anybody tell you that you can't do it. If there is something in life that you enjoy doing, do it. Nobody wants to wake up in the morning and go to a job they hate! Do lots of research, read books about starting your own business etc.

Prices start at $20 for a dozen cupcakes (chocolate & vanilla, without decoration); $30 for gourmet cupcakes (Vanilla Bean Coconut, White Chocolate Raspberry, Chocolate Orange, among others, without decoration); $50- $55 for giant cupcakes (feeds 12); cakes priced based on size, details etc.

If you would like more info or would like to place an order, contact Christina via email: cmh91@hotmail.ca or phone: 604-657-6298

Some more of the ladies' beautiful & edible creations:

Cakes:




GIANT Cupcakes:




 Cupcakes: