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Saturday, November 4, 2017

Simple Parenting

My favorite items and tips to make parenting simple. Bring it back to the old days in the shade. Our houses weren't overrun with artificially dyed foods and toys, plastics and microwaves, and we were better off for it. I feel that our children can benefit from that lifestyle and it also helps ease the second-to-second rush that rule our lives. These are a few of my favorite products for baby #2.

1. Read more. Of course there are some parenting styles or practices even in the best books, that just won't gel with yours. So pick the ones that work, and leave the rest. Never feel that there is one "right" way to do anything, let alone parent a child. It is a constant journey of self discovery and trial-and-error, but just the fact that you are seeking ways to improve on parenting, shows how much you care about the development and well-being of your child. Kudos! Some great books on simple parenting: Trees Make the Best Mobiles and The Happiest Baby on the Block

2. Learn what your baby needs: A great system for this is the Dunstan Baby Language System. It teaches how to understand the five cries your baby uses to tell you what they need. This is the most amazing discovery EVER and it truly helps eliminate frustration especially in those early months when you and baby are still getting to know one another.
Dunstan Baby Language -- Learn the universal language of newborn babies

3. Music-Rockabye Baby: I was thoughtfully given this as a gift when we first found out we were pregnant, by one of our really good couple-friends. MY husband is in a band (The Mission Veo) so it goes without mention that we are rather interested in music. This lovely couple purchased the compilation CD of instrumental versions of favorite rock songs. It is beautifully orchestrated so that baby will be soothed into slumber, and also fun for adults to try and guess which band is being covered. There are many of these CD's where each one is devoted entirely to the songs of one band, and thus your baby can jam out to the gentle tunes of Nirvana, U2, Pink Floyd, or my favorite- The Cure. Nobody wants a baby with poor music taste, so let your kids get ahead of the peer group.

Rockabye Baby! Good Day, Goodnight: The 5 Year Anniversary Compilation

4. Moby Baby Wrap/ Baby K'tan: Wearing your baby has more benefits than one would think.
 According to Dr. Sears, babies who are  "worn" are smarter, more attached, less fussy and learn human interactions better than those who are not.
While baby-wearing has gained popularity in Western cultures recently, it is an age old tradition in many areas of the world. I grew up in South Africa, where it is customary for the black women to strap their babies onto their back whilst they work or go about their business. We had a cleaning lady/nanny who was like a second mom to me, and I remember being very young and being strapped to her back, abd how soothing it was to hear her singing and the vibrations her voice made. I would fall asleep to the constant rocking motion.  Some more information on baby-wearing around the world: (Courtesy of www.slingbabies.co.nz)
  • For instance Mexican people use the Rebozo, which is a square of woven cloth tied over one shoulder with baby usually on the back- sometimes called a Chal, depending on the length.
  • Peruvians have a Manta which sits over both shoulders like a cape, and baby sits high on mother's back. 
  • Guatemalans use Parraje- similar to a Rebozo.
  • European mothers used a mixture of pouches, wraps and short cloth carriers.
  • Alaskan/Canadian people have the Amauti which is a very thick arctic jacket with a baby 'pocket' in the back, baby even fits under the over-sized hood!
  • Papua New Guinea mothers use a Bilum- a net bag held at the forehead with baby hanging at the back (very strong necks!) 
  • Indonesian mothers use a Selendang which is a long ornate wrap.
  • Aboriginal mothers used to keep their babies in carriers made of bark, similar to the cradleboards used by Native Americans but without the cloth covering. 
  • Asian mothers use a variety of carriers including Mei-tai /Hmong/ Bei(China), Onbuhimo (Japan), Podaegi (Korea) plus many use a 'carrier' of long straps which go under baby's armpits and thighs for back carries. 
  • African mothers use a 'Khanga' which is a short-ish piece of cloth tied around the torso, so baby sits low on the back.  
My two favorite baby wearing slings are: The Moby wrap

And the K'tan: $49.99-59.99.

Baby K'tan Original Baby Carrier, Black, Small

I would love to hear what your favorite baby products are, so send me an email, or post a comment.
And keep your parenting as simple as possible!

Love and lightness,
Kerry, the Momster

Friday, February 8, 2013

Letters to my Valentine

I heart snail mail. Always have, always will! Sadly, it is a dying art form. For the day of love: Valentines Day, which also happens to be one of my favorite holidays (maybe having something to do with my birthday being the following day) I make lots of pretty things for the specials in my life.

When my daughter was born I began a series of letters to her, that I mail to our address and then stuff into a box unopened when they arrive, so one day she will have a "journal" of unopened letters all postmarked. For my son, I haven't been as diligent, but write to him in an actual journal, letters whenever I remember to (The second baby always gets jilted).

Valentine Craft
So for Valentines Day I made them each a "sustainable" felt envelope to stuff with treats, and maybe afterwards if I am feeling up to it, will add to the collection, so that they can play mailman with velcro stamps and the works.
Here's how:

For the top flap, use a new piece of felt halved, then fold in half again and cut in a jagged diagonal, rounding the top.

Cut out a triangular piece from the top piece of felt on the envelope body.

Stitch the sides and bottom first. I used a contrasting red color thread for effect.
Then add top panel and stitch straight across.

All done! Easy right?

Now to decorate...

I cut out felt names because I want to use them as place cards for the Valentine table too.

I made a quick stamp and some permanent marker lines on the front.

I love love love them! Hope my kiddies do too!

Love and letters,
Kerry, the Momster

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

scratch and sniff

I got this wonderfully easy idea from kiwicrate.com's 2 ingredient tuesdays. Non-toxic, sweet smelling(and tasting) koolaid paint. Just mix koolaid with a high concentration and paint away. But make sure you are watching the whole time or you end up soaking up berry blood-like pools off the floor like me.
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Published with Blogger-droid v1.6.7

Monday, August 13, 2012

Sweetest School Support

Can you believe "back-to-school" time is here already? Now that I am no longer a teacher, I can join the other moms and dads and be ecstatic for this wonderful time of year!!

 As a little back to school treat I am making these candy bars for my daughter. They are encouraging and so sweet (hehe excuse the pun!). I found them over at Sugar to Designs and the printable is free.

Go ahead,sweeten up your little scholar's day. :) 

 Love and lots more free time, Kerry, the Momster 

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Mad Magnets

For a recent road trip to Daytona beach I went a little nuts making goodie bags to keep the kids entertained. This little magnet toy was such a hit with my daughter that I thought I would share. I used a cd tin and drew the background ocean scene on paper. Then I found 2 small pictures of the kiddies, cut them out and glued to a magnet sheet (you can also print directly onto magnet sheets, but I use recycled calendar magnets that we get from realtors and such like-read:free!). After that I used beach themed stickers stuck ont magnet sheets and cutout. Voila! Beach magnet scene toy ready and waiting. All the pieces fit nicely in the tin, and it is small enough to put in any purse for entertainment-on-the-go boring errand days.

Love and games,
Kerry, the momster.
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