Month: March 2008

Whatsa Wagamama?

My mother-in-law spared no opportunity to laud the wondrous and all mighty playpen. Yes, it’s useful when traveling or when you just can’t chase after your wee one any longer. But she relied on it so much with my husband, I’m surprised he doesn’t have a permanent mesh imprint on his face. Now when she suggests it for baby #3, I can tell her to go to… Wagamama Baby. Translation: Spoiled rotten, in Japanese.. Granted, this absolutely gorgeous, soft mat called a zabu is not entirely a playpen alternative, unless you’ve got a wee tiny one that doesn’t really go...

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Jubi: Holy Sheet

Try walking into your local big box store and asking for some solid colored crib sheets. The sales clerk will look at you like you just asked her for some nice razor blades wrapped in barbed wire for your baby to play with. What, no clowns? No farm animals? No avant-garde geometrics?  Which is why you shouldn’t go to your local big box store for such a thing. You should go to Jubi. This New Zealand company run by mom Alison Hui is already known across the globe for their heaven-sent thick, soft crib-bassinet-bed sheets in refreshingly neutral solids....

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Preppy, By Way of Bed-Stuy

The argyle for babies just keeps coming our way in new and fun ways. Like this sunny yellow romper from CMP fave label, Sir Hayes. The color is perfectly calibrated to spring you out of your Winter baby wardrobe blahs, and the argyle print has just enough irony, considering the straight-outta-Brooklyn sensibility of the shop. Digging whole the postmodern urban prep vibe? Don’t miss the "Carlton" onesies, an Izod-style polo turned snapsuit featuring a smiling Sir Hayes crown logo where the alligator might be. The name comes courtesy Carlton Banks. You know, Fresh Prince Carlton. Hilarious. –Liz EXTRA COOL:...

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Rock On, Little Girls

I’ve got a 2.5 year-old girl who can identify Bob Dylan by sight, jumps up and down when she hears They Might Be Giants on the radio, and tells everyone she knows that she wants to be a drummer. Needless to say I find it wee bit annoying when kids boutiques have all the rock-themed tees categorized under "boys." Not Slick Sugar. They’ve got an entire line of Spring duds just for little rockettes, as they call it – although I’m not entirely sure that the female version of rocker is rockette. I’m particularly digging the cap-sleeve black tee...

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Hooked On My Baby Not Having Tantrums At Dinner Time

My niece has been telling her parents what she wants using sign language since she was about seven months old. She also happens to be one of the calmest, most good-natured babies you’d ever hope to meet, and doesn’t scream or cry with frustration when she can’t get what she want. Coincidence? Probably not. Kinda makes you want to start teaching your kid to sign. I’d seen some of the Baby Signing Time DVDs before, but Hooked on Phonics (you know, from the commercials?) has just collaborated with them to release a decent Hooked on Baby: Learn to Sign...

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The Much Overlooked Turnip Gets Its Literary Due At Last

The Gigantic Turnip, the classic Russian folktale retold by Alexsei Tolstoy with Niamn Sharkey’s amazing illustrations, had me at its cover. I want to paint my house with the color palette, and I think I’d like to frame a picture of the old man’s cow. The story line is very simple: Big turnip, can’t pull it out, enlist the entire barnyard to help, cooperation, yay team, turnip soup ’till you puke. Beginning readers should find success with the large font, simple words, and engaging repetitions. As for me, I like a book where the mouse wins in the end....

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Deglingos: French for Toss the Teddy Bear

I often find myself gravitating towards European stuffed animals. There’s something quirky and inventive about many of them relative to our own teddies with their ubiquitous neck ribbons. Plus there’s that matter of the stringent EU safety standards that inspires an added jolt of mommy confidence. A recent find: The hilarious Les Déglingos. The name is some kind of French pun that’s totally over my head, but I’m loving the backstory about how they all speak in words ending in -os. Although mass produced, each one definitely has that handmade feel about it with all those fabrics and colorful...

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Baby Slings With a Backstory

I’m all for babywearing, and not just because it keeps my baby secure and happy. Frankly, I’m more selfish than that, and slinging my baby frees up my hands so that I can do other things. Oh okay, the sling hides my flabby postpartum stomach.  But tot-to-go founder Shani Sam slung her baby for a bigger reason: Her daughter was born with a rare liver condition and required constant comfort. (Colic doesn’t sound so bad after all, does it?) Inspired by her baby, Shani began designing her own slings in cool cotton or cozy fleece-cotton jersey blends, to be...

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Cozy Cuts, Now Coming To a Bathtub Near You

One of the happy places for NYC moms is the chain of Cozy’s Cuts for Kids, the kind of salon that feels more Peewee’s Playhouse than barber shop. But what’s especially appealing to parents – besides the fact that your kid doesn’t mind sitting in the car-shaped chair and watching his favorite Diego tape during his cut – is the line of paraben-free kids hair products. Kids will like the fruity scents, and you’ll like the use of herbs instead of chemicals in their shampoos, detangling products, and styling goop. They’ve even got a natural lice shampoo called Boo!...

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Happy Birthday, You Little Rat

We’re big fans of Chinese zodiac-themed items for unique baby gifts. Although let’s face it, this lunar year being the year of the rat doesn’t inherently provide as many cute options as say, the year of the monkey or the year of the pig. One gift that we’re loving, is the appropriately named The Year of the Rat: Tales From the Chinese Zodiac, the next in Oliver Chin’s wonderful series. Miah Alcorn’s illustrations have a frenetic, smile-inducing, Cartoon Network feel about them – a perfect complement to the engaging story of a baby rat infused with "rat" characteristics of...

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