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Archive for January, 2010

Starting last summer, V started to show a real interest in taking photographs. Our crummy point & shoot is broken, so we mainly use my husbands work camera which is a pretty expensive DSLR. Obviously, I get nervous with it in the hands of a toddler. So for V’s birthday this year we bought her a Vtech Kidzoom camera.

I hate it.

First, let me say that we are a pretty low income family so at 60.00 this was a big purchase for us. I thought it would be worth it because she was showing such a keen interest in photography & if there’s one thing I always want to do for my children, it’s foster their creative side. When the camera arrived, I was so excited to give it to her that we ended up giving it to her early, thinking if we did, she could take pictures of her new baby sister when she came. The camera body itself is very sturdy but here is my beef: It has video games on it.

I can handle the crappy resolution of the camera (it’s actually terrible), that’s fine. It’s not like she’s Nan Goldin or anything. But as soon as she discovered the video games on it, that’s all she wanted to use it for. If I wanted her to play video games, I would have bought her a freaking Gameboy. I personally, don’t want V playing video games until she is much older. I know Vtech likes to deem them ‘educational’ but in my opinion, I’d rather have her using her own imagination then being a mindless drone at 3 years old.

I am so disappointed in this camera. What’s worse is that we can’t afford to replace it. She found it this morning, took 3 pictures & went right to the video games. It breaks my heart that I have to a) take her birthday gift away from her and b) know that I wasted 60 bucks on a video game system disguised as a camera. I thought I had done a pretty good job researching kid’s cameras….why should I assume they’d stick video games on a camera. Ugh. The better options seem to be the following:

Discovery Kids Digital Kids Camera (this one doesn’t have the greatest reviews, but it’s a cheaper option)

Fisher-Price Kid-Tough Digital Camera (I think maybe next year this will be the one we get V)

I guess we’ll have to wait until her next birthday to find out.

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3 Months!

Or just shy of. This picture was so cute I couldn’t resist posting it early. I also wanted to take a photograph of my new & very beautiful INKE cushion cover (They have set up a new blog here in case any of you are interested). I know it’s a bit fuzzy but right after I took this picture, V whispered in Clemmie’s ear “Best Friends Forever” so slow & sweet, I nearly died. I feel so incredibly thankful for my babies & my family right now. I’m going to try & burn that moment into my brain so I can think about it years from now when they are fighting over the car keys.

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Haiti.

My heart is breaking for Haiti right now. If only it were as calm & peaceful as this picture right now. But it’s not, it’s been rocked by a massive 7.0 earthquake. As a lifelong New Englander, I have been lucky enough to never have had to experience an earthquake. I can’t possibly imagine what these people are going through.

I’ve been looking at coverage all day, watching the numbers of dead & injured pile up but it was when I read this blog post by Virginia Montanez that I just started crying and couldn’t really stop. The thought of all of the children there, in a yard, just waiting for help that may or may not come is just killing me.

I’ve never really felt so helpless in my entire life. These are the times when I wish was independently wealthy, or was a doctor, or could just take off at a moments notice to volunteer in any way that I can. Sadly, I’m none of those things so I just sit here and watch and hope that things will be okay, even if it’s just a little bit. Tonight as I was putting Violet to bed she asked, “Why are you so sad Mama”? so I had to figure out a way to tell her why without well, totally traumatizing her. After I told her she said “We need to fly in a plane to get them and bring them home”. Yes kid, we totally do.

Jesse & I donated 10.00 by texting “Haiti” to 90999. 100% of the $10 donation goes to Red Cross for Haiti relief and your carrier keeps nothing. They’ve raised over a million dollars so far, I only hope that that number continues to grow. Every little bit really will help. We’re also waiting to see if they’ll be taking blood donations. I just read that American Airlines is going to be flying Doctors & Nurses down for free, you can call 212-697-9767 for more information.

Throughout the day I’ve come across many links about how you can help or donate to the cause. I thought I’d use this post to pass them along to anyone who hasn’t seen them already. So please peeps, I am begging you, take a look at these links and do anything you can. If you don’t know what to do, call your local Red Cross and ask. In the meantime, count your lucky stars, hug the shit out of your loved ones and be thankful for every single thing you have.

10 Ways to Help the Haiti Earthquake Relief Efforts on Planet Green

Haiti Earthquake: How to Help on The Takeaway

American Red Cross Haiti Relief: How To Help Haiti Victims, Where To Submit Donations on The Huffington Post

The Newsroom on The American Red Cross

A regularly updated list of agencies responding to the crisis and accepting donations on interaction.org

Haiti earthquake: News updates on CNN

Haiti Earthquake coverage on Twitter via The Huffington Post

Vegan Bake Sales For Haiti on The Post Punk Kitchen

Partners in Health on The Arcade Fire website

*Photo courtesy of M Eriksson

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Wall decals. The new craze in kid-room decor. Yeah, they’re cool but they are a dime a dozen and anyone with access to a vinyl cutter can make them. Inke Heiland, an Artist/Designer from Amsterdam has taken a totally different approach to wall decor with these AMAZING wallpaper silhouettes. Inke offers mostly animal silhouettes, as well as an incredible tree, some birds and even interior pieces. Each silhouette is made with actual vintage and/or designer wallpaper and comes as a DIY kit. The glue is very easy to mix and all you have to do is brush it on and apply it to the wall. A bit messier than a standard wall decal yes, but the texture of the wallpaper is so nice and the visual is out of this world. We put two small birds up on the top of the door and wow, I wish we had more. I am totally, TOTALLY coveting the Town musicians of Bremen piece. So cool.

Inke first started making these for her son’s bedroom & liked them so much that she decided to produce them. I for one am so glad she did! Inke is also now offering duvet covers, curtains & pillows that are just as visually stunning. You can view the collection here & find a list of stockists here.

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Clementine hates being swaddled. Like, HATES it. She loves having her hands free, so she always hulks her way out a swaddle. I know I don’t have to swaddle her, but she’s really fussy & I notice that it definitely helps her so I was really psyched to try out an Ergococoon. The Ergocoon is an organic lightweight zip-up swaddle and it is AWESOME. It’s perfectly stretchy and it allows for Clem to move her arms around a bit & touch her hands, which plain old swaddling doesn’t do. And seeing as my new daughter loves to hold her hands together like some sort of teacup evil genius, the Ergocoon is a huge hit. It also has an open bottom, so middle of the night changing is super easy & I never have to worry about my hubs not doing it correctly.
(I say that in a my-husband-actually-has-trouble-with-it sort of way, not in an all-men-are-useless sort of way, Jesse is an amazing dad). There’s also no loud, baby-waking velcro involved. The Ergococoon is lightweight, so it can be used all year round if needed. I usually swaddle Clementine’s bottom half & Then stick The Ergococoon on her for really cold nights. I truly believe that this swaddle has supplied me with many extra hours of sleep at this point, I love it. Take that, fussy little baby!

Ergococoons are made by ErgoPouch, a small company out of Australia. They provide a great line of baby sleepthings, all of which are made with organic natural fibers. For a list of stockists, visit their site. Happy sleeping!

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