Thursday, December 29, 2011

Occupy Lego!

I don't generally get political on this blog, but having just spent hundreds of dollars on lego sets for Christmas, really made me find this video interesting.  I may have to pick these up for my son for next Christmas!

Tuesday, December 06, 2011

Meet me at the playground?

Eric Vance took these photographs labeled "environmental justice."  They were taken in 2007. For the EPA. During the Bush Administration. So I can only assume they are meant to promote nuclear power plants as safe enough to put a playground next to, or maybe Vance is a big Simpsons fan?  The third photo's playground looks extremely close, and oh so inviting!  

Thursday, December 01, 2011

Hand Made! One of our Favorite Things!

Our good friend Chris Gregori designed and printed this poster for Real Baby.  It's great for your nursery decor, or just to get your kids excited about their abc's.  We love it!  We were excited to see it featured  here...

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

What's in a Name? Ask Google!

A parenting pop culture site recently did a survey and found that 64% of potential parents ran their baby name choices through Google.  We are all guilty of searching ourselves, well at least I am, and most parents want original names, names that don't mean the wrong thing, or lead there child to later abuse on the playground!  Read more in the NY Times article HERE

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

The Way to Run

I am relatively new to the sport of running.  I have always found my exercise through the art of chasing balls. Basketball, football, baseball, volleyball, tennis, and even squash.  The ball, and the game, take your mind off the fact that you are running and moving and pushing yourself to exhaustion.  
The art of running  has no distraction. It's you, and your body and your mind, pounding down whatever surface you choose for the day.  There are no interactions to take your mind off what you are feeling.  No one calling a foul, no comradery or  trash talking to motivate you. It is a singular sport.  Even if you choose to run with others, you spend most of your time processing and evaluating your own personal pace, gate, and state of well being.  
It has taken time, but I have learned to enjoy running.  I'm not saying I love it, and practice it as a passion, as some of my friends do.  I'm saying that I finally understand the attraction. You can't escape yourself when you run. Music helps, but there is a mind body connection that can not be excused.  Pain, freedom, elation, free thinking, sadness, and sense of accomplishment are only a fraction of the emotions you feel.  
I asked a friend once what she thought about when she ran: She quietly replied, "everything."   Then quickly followed that statement with, "I also constantly think about turning around, or calling someone to pick me up!"  The art of the run, I think it's time to lace up.

For all you parents who run to stay in shape, or stay sane, or to get your kids out of the house with you : Here is a fascinating article I read this morning on running:  The Once and Future Way to Run

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Cooking With Your Kids = Smile on Face

Real Baby Loves Sticky Fingers  cooking!  You have heard me speak of my love for cooking with my children, and SFC is exactly what I have been talking about!  Being creative, having fun, taking ownership and enjoying food.  It's so simple , but hard to impart at times.  The girls at sticky fingers have the knowledge, the passion, and the skills to help your kids learn about food, cooking, and healthy eating for life.

Each After School Enrichment class will feature a healthy recipe, emphasize safety and skill building, and encourage environmental awareness in an engaging way. They provide all of the tools, ingredients and instruction needed to cook up a healthy snack each week, and will end the session with a recipe collection for each little chef for future family cooking fun!
All of Sticky Fingers trained cooking instructors share a lifetime love of cooking and a passion for cooking with kids! They have Montessori school teachers, culinary school teachers, summer camp directors, catering chefs and even graduates from Le Cordon Bleu in Paris on their talented team of cooking instructors. Go and cook up some fun with them!  Find there website and sign up your little ones HERE!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Wee Plan Baby Planners!

Real Baby is excited to introduce you to are new friends at Wee Baby Planners!
WeePlan Baby Planners offers certified baby planning, greenproofing, and concierge services for expecting and new parents.  They are devoted to accommodating your every need throughout your journey toward parenthood by presenting you with objective support and education tailored to your individual needs during preconception, pregnancy, and beyond.  Wee Plan will help you spend your time enjoying your pregnancy and newborn by eliminating the stress and adding the joy that comes from knowing you are ready for the most incredible time of your life.

We at Real Baby LOVE Annie Mullens, and cannot recommend her enough!  She is beyond knowledgeable with all things baby!   Annie is a Certified Baby Planner, Greenproofer, Maternity Product Specialist Instructor for The International Maternity Institute, and Certified Car Seat Technician.  She owned her own retail store, worked in finance, and eventually settled into a career as the manager of a very successful retail baby boutique. 

In this role, Annie had encountered thousands of expectant parents.  She heard their fears and shared their joy, but more than anything she saw the stress they were enduring regarding all the decisions they needed to make.   As time went on she heard more and more parents asking for someone who could help them make educated choices about their pregnancy and beyond.  Many didn’t have the time (or energy) to research all of the baby preparation options out there and when they did attempt to research their options, more often than not ended up feeling overwhelmed, stressed, and even more confused. Her passion was born!  This passion led her to start WeePlan Baby Planners and begin her role as a Maternity Product Specialist for IMI.  

Contact Wee Plan Baby Planners HERE !  You and your baby will be glad you did!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

The Best Booster Seats of 2011!

The Insurance Institute for Highway Safety just released their 2011 ratings for booster seat safety.  Their ratings identify boosters most likely to provide good lap and shoulder belt fit.  safety belts are designed with adults in mind, not kids, but when a booster seat is doing its job, the vehicle belt will fit a child correctly.  That means the lap belt will lie flat across a child's upper thighs, not across the soft abdomen, and the shoulder belt will cross snugly over the middle of a child's shoulder.  BEST BETS are seats that provide good fit for typical 4 to 8 year-olds in almost any car, minivan, or SUV.

Real Baby is proud to carry several of the booster seats listed on the IHS Best Bets list!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Rockin Baby Slings give Back!

Rockin Baby Sling makes sure that all of their fabrics are made of natural fibers, breathable and of high-quality. They are all pre-washed in natural salt water to set the colors, prevent shrinkage, and soften the fabric.
All edges on their slings and pouches are overlocked then seamed twice to ensure no tearing or fraying at the edges.  They also use 40 lb weight thread as it increases the strength of the Rockin’ Baby Sling and Pouch. That means they are really strong.

With every sling/pouch that is purchased, Rockin’ Baby will give a sling to a mother in Haiti (and beyond, once Haitian women have plenty!). 

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Stroller Geek Alert!

I admit it, I am a stroller geek!  Here is a video showing the development and history of one of my favorite strollers, the Bugaboo.   I love the first Bugaboo prototype, it's so different and has come such a long way!    

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Get out and ride!

Last night while making Chicken Parmesan for the kids, my son informed me that he had a flat tire on his bicycle.  He asked me if that meant that he had to buy a whole new tire or just the inner tube?  I decided I had enough time while my sauce simmered to educate him and his sister on the fine art of patching a bicycle tube.  Thank goodness they found it fascinating and were surprised how easy it was with the right tools.  They were so excited they both went for a ride on their bikes around the neighborhood while I finished up the chicken.  I have always loved bikes and cycling and hope to hand that passion on to my children because it holds a life time of benefits. Cycling with your kids is more than a good way of getting them out of the house and exercising – it turns even mundane trips such as the school run into quality time.  Fall is upon us, but there is still plenty of time to ride!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Chicago is laying down the law on crib bumpers!

Its hard to know what to believe when it comes to our own health and the health of our children.  So Many studies, so many scary facts. "Did I assemble this correctly?", "Is this secure enough?", "Is this the best product for my child?", "is this safe for my child?".  These are just a few of the thousands of questions that run through every parents mind daily!  When asked for advice  I always suggest common sense, research, and the, "does it feel safe to you?" philosophy. The city of Chicago feels differently, and is going to make one decision for all parents in their jurisdiction.
Chicago became the first city in the U.S. to ban the sale of crib bumper pads last week. The City Council approved the ordinance, which was introduced after Chicago Tribune investigations suggested bumpers pose a suffocation risk to babies.
The Juvenile Products Manufacturers Association maintains that crib bumper pads can help prevent injury when used correctly, and the ordinance which proposes to ban bumpers in the City of Chicago could bring unintended consequences if crib bumper pads are not made available to parents and caregivers.
The JPMA said that in 2011, it commissioned a third party review of previous studies of crib bumper pads. Based on the outcomes of the studies that were reviewed by Exponent, a leading engineering and scientific consulting firm providing solutions to complex technical problems, found that there were methodological problems that were apparent in the criteria used to select the incidents included for analysis and in the analytical treatment of other potential contributors. So they basically did not have enough evidence or data.
In March of 2011, Innovative Science Solutions (ISS) announced that a thorough review of published scientific studies performed for JPMA revealed no direct evaluation of a relationship between crib bumper pad use and infant death.
The Exponent study said that "Investigations into sleep environments of infants consistently fail to identify crib bumpers as a unique or separate source of serious injury or death to sleeping infants. Studies focusing efforts on evaluating sleep-related hazards generally, and crib bumpers explicitly, similarly do not find crib bumpers to be a significant risk."

"Based on the analysis completed by Exponent, the crib bumper pad ban in the City of Chicago is baseless and may be putting children at risk for further injuries due to unintended consequences and parents attempting to create makeshift items to replace bumper pads," said Michael Dwyer, JPMA executive director.

The state of Maryland is considering a similar proposal to ban the sale of bumpers.

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

Rock n Roll without the headache!

Finally! Kids hearing protection!You now have a solution to providing hearing protection for children with sensitive hearing and kids that need hearing protection. The Banz hearing protectors effectively attenuate harmful loud noises without shutting out other ambient sounds. The earmuffs are easy to wear, with a low profile and no protruding parts that can catch on things. The wide, foam-filled cushions ensure that the set doesn't squeeze uncomfortably, and there is plenty of space for the ears inside the shells. Banz earmuffs have a comfy leather cover over the headband to ensure all over comfort!! The weight is also important to comfort; each ear muff weighs just 190 grams.

They are perfect for all sorts of activities including:
   - helping out to mow the yard or with workshop projects
   - going to sporting events, car races or air shows
   - water skiing, boating and other water sports
   - music concerts or band rehearsals
   - calming young children in noisy environments

Thursday, September 08, 2011

Healthy habits during pregnancy!

Have you or a girlfriend ever used pregnancy as an excuse to skip workouts or to overindulge because you’re “eating for 2?”  Pregnancy is the perfect time to start or continue a healthy lifestyle…no more excuses.  A nutritious diet, a low to moderate exercise regimen, and a rested state will help lead to a greater feeling of well-being for not only you, the mother, but also your growing child and family.  The habits you form now will affect generations to come.
When I was pregnant with my son 3 years ago, I had the nutrition part down.  A cold glass of milk coupled with a piece of fruit and steel cut oatmeal was my breakfast staple.  Lunch was always a hearty, protein rich salad with a side of fruit and wheat crackers.  My dinners were as equally balanced.  I religiously hydrated every hour and munched on snacks as needed (nuts, raw veggies, dried or fresh fruit, and an occasional brownie – my guilty pleasure).
Exercise was also a no brainer.  However, when fellow gym rats began questioning me and my protruding baby bump about my rigorous weight lifting routine and long runs on the treadmill, I figured I better do a little prenatal exercise research.  In the end, I didn’t want to harm my little being inside.  Some websites suggested I refrain from all abdominal work, another said to not lift objects greater than 30lbs, and others cautioned me to keep my heart rate under 140 beats per minute.  If this was all true, then my son and I were doomed!  Luckily however, I learned of a local pre- and postnatal program.  Each Stroller Strides/Fit4Baby instructor was nationally certified and based their workouts upon the rate of perceived exertion.  Not only did I receive a phenomenal interval based workout that combined cardiovascular and strength training, but I was given modifications for certain moves, kindly reminded to tone it down during tough sets, and made close friends with my 12 other competitors (all soon to be or new mamas).
Now, the resting part…hmmm…that is something I still struggle with to this day.  However, during my pregnancy state, I did take an hour out of my afternoon each day to read a book or do some reflective thinking.  Reducing my schedule and obligations, taking time for myself, and getting to bed early are some of my goals that are slowly becoming more achievable.
It’s truly up to you to determine where the line falls; just try to do what’s best for you and your baby’s health.  Eat nutrient dense foods, enroll in prenatal exercise (Yoga and Pilates are wonderful options as well), and get ample rest. 

Written by Sarah Johnson (Registered Nurse - predominant experience in labor and delivery and newborn nursery, AFAA Certified Group Exercise Instructor, Nationally Certified in Pre/Post Natal Fitness)  For more Information or to attend a class with Sarah click on the Stroller Strides logo below!

NOTE: This information is not intended to be a medical guideline for pregnant women. If you are pregnant, it is recommended that you consult your physician to determine a prenatal exercise program that is right for you.

Thursday, September 01, 2011

You and your kids will love this!

I often search the web for interesting things to blog about.  A cool new children's product, facts and information about parenting, or something that makes me laugh, usually catch my eye.  This morning I came across a fun and fascinating website called   I could not stop watching all the wonderful videos.

As the website states: There's just so much science, nature, music, arts, technology, storytelling and assorted good stuff out there that my kids (and maybe your kids) haven't seen. It's most likely not stuff that was made for them...
Off the grid-for-little-kids videos and other smart stuff collected by Rion Nakaya and her three year old co-curator.  
But we don't underestimate kids around here.
below is a video example of what you find.  Take a look and visit the site with your kids. 

Flottille (detail) from Etienne Cliquet on Vimeo.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Real Baby Has the Mountain Buggy Terrain Stroller!

We love the Mountain Buggy Terrain Stroller!  We just picked up this model and are proudly showing it to everyone we can in our store! Stop in or take a look here!

 If you're an avid runner who enjoys going from roads to trails, the Mountain Buggy Terrain™ is for you. The 3-mode front wheel locks forward when you run for maximum control and stability. The 16-inch tires feature all-purpose tread for excellent traction over uneven surfaces and the adjustable tracking offers precision steering. For your comfort, adjust the handle to fit your height.

additional features on the terrain
•    carrycot compatible
•    travel system (carseat compatible)
•    a multi adjustable handle
•    adjustable seat position from full recline fold (newborn) to upright (6 years)
•    5kg gear tray capacity with zip cover
•    peek a boo flap
•    compact stand fold with quick release wheels
•    twist and slide harness adjustment
•    foot operated brake
•    6063 T5 lightweight aluminium
•    follow the sun canopy with flick out mesh sun visor
•    hard wearing 600D polyester fabric – water repellent and durable
•    easy to remove fabric set
•    detachable bumper bar
•    bottle holder

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Porsche is entering the Stroller Game!

I am more of a Toyota - Honda person, but when I saw this I just had to share.  Porsche has entered the stroller market with this sleek designed P'4911 model, created by industrial designer Dawid Dawod.  It's sleek, masculine, has ball bearing axle-less wheels , and supposedly will fit in the trunk of any Porsche.  My question is where does your child ride after the stroller has taken up the entire back seat area?  Who cares!  It's cool and Its a Porsche!  This is not on the market yet, but I can't wait to see one.  Cost?  It could set the new high mark for luxury strollers.  Again, who cares! It will be the true Porsche of strollers. 

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Real Baby Loves This New Stroller From Britax!

We just received our first B-Agile stroller from Britax and we love it!  Light, functional, sturdy and easy. It has all the features we look for with a great price to boot!  Watch the video and check it out on our website HERE!

Tuesday, August 09, 2011

The Flair is Back !

The Boon Flair Highchair is back and better than ever!

We know you have a Flair for good taste. No cracks. No crevices. Therefore, no abyss full of crumbs. This one-piece seat is the sleekest, smoothest thing going and it makes cleanup unbelievably easy. Its dishwasher-safe tray cover actually fits in a dishwasher. And the continuous height positioning with pneumatic lift is just a fancy way of saying you can pick the exact height you want to fit your table.  Its beautiful new re-design is more functional and cooler than ever!  Find one HERE!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Bad Parenting Tips!

I came across a blog today while enjoying my morning coffee.  Unfortunately, it made me laugh so hard I almost sprayed my keyboard with coffee!  Really bad parenting advice is a hilarious tounge and cheek blog about what to teach (or not teach!), your children.  Parenting is fulfilling and beautiful, and I know that we all take it very seriously. Its fun just to laugh!   Enjoy! Some of my favorite bits of advice from the blog are:

Rule #99: Encourage Your Daughter to Date a Carny

Rule #13: Hit on Your Kid’s Teacher

Rule #16: Put Your Child on a Supermodel Diet

Rule #69: Transport Your Child in a Hamster Ball

Rule #70: Register for Your Baby Shower at a Pawnshop

Monday, July 25, 2011

Cardboard Highchair!

When I was a child card board boxes offered hours of entertainment and fascination.  I once turned a box that housed a new stove into a space ship, then a pirate ship, and finally at days end, it became a post office.  Not once did i think of turning it into a functional highchair!  

I have seen this crazy chair floating around the web and in a few industry mags for a year or two, but have yet to see it in person.  I love its simplicity, and its reuse, reduce, recycle pathos.  It is the brain child  of Turko-Australian designer/visionary Betul Medakbas . She realized what the world needed was more flatpack cardboard children's furniture, and so, with the help of noted Australian cardboard designer Anthony Dunn, Belkiz was born.  

I have a strong feeling that I have not seen one for sale yet due to all the safety hoops this chair will have to jump through.   Its own website , displays and informs us beautifully about the chair and its functions and sustainability, but does not offer any place to purchase it.  We will have to wait a little longer for the world to embrace Cardboard baby furniture.

Monday, July 11, 2011

What's in a Name?

Choosing your baby's name is one of the most important thing you do as a parent.  A lot of thought goes into naming a baby - will the name suit him or her, does it work with your surname and the names of the rest of the family, can it be abbreviated, is there any potential for teasing and so on. However, naming your baby takes on a whole new dimension if you consider that the name you choose might actually affect your baby's future. 

The belief that your name plays a significant role in determining your destiny is one that has been held for many, many years throughout the different cultures of the world. However in Western society the focus of naming has tended towards choosing names that sound nice (and possibly their superficial meaning), rather than in any deep rooted belief that names could actually affect the way our children's lives turn out. So, the question is do the names we choose for our children have more of an impact than we think?   

Im not sure where I stand on the issue, but their is plenty of literature on names based in numerology and astrology that can really make choosing the perfect name difficult!  Here is the list of the top 100 names being chosen so far in the states for 2011.  My Daughter just informed me that the top two names listed this year are two of the main characters from the book/movie series Twilight!  Happy Naming!

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