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  • First Birthday Party Prep

    How to get the most out of your baby’s first birthday

    Article & Photo courtesy of Well Rounded NY

    Our plan for Owen’s first birthday is to keep it small and intimate, at home. It’s not just that we are working with a smaller budget. We also recognize that the first birthday is, for the most part, more for the parents and the pictures than for our little guy. That said, no matter how intimate, if you want something memorable, a little preparation can go a long way. Here are 8 tips for planning your baby’s first birthday party and how to make the most of it.

    1. Keep the planning simple.

    Life is busy. So rather than stressing myself out about organizing the party, I want to do my best to keep things simple. Why? Because if I keep things simple and organized, I’ll be more likely to actually enjoy the party too! Our little pals and gals only turn one once, after all. Finding a venue that’s both affordable and comfortable for you and your guests is key. We plan on doing Owen’s party at home, but there are many other cheap or even free options, like parks or a friend’s backyard or house.

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  • What’s Hand, Foot, and Mouth Disease?

    5 things your pediatrician wants you to know about coxsackie.

    Article & Photo courtesy of Well Rounded NY

    “It’s going around,” is a common phrase I hear from parents. Right now, the normal seasonal increase in coxsackie virus (hand, foot, and mouth disease) is in full swing and we are seeing tons of kids with typical symptoms in the office. Even the mention of hand, foot mouth disease can send typically calm parents into full panic. I’m hoping after reading this article, that parents will realize that while this illness can certainly make your little one feel very uncomfortable, it is rarely life threatening or dangerous. Typically, with some time, love and good pain control, your little one will seem back to himself in a few days.

    Here’s are five things your pediatrician wants you to know about hand, foot and mouth disease:

    1. It’s a virus. Hand, foot and mouth disease is an infection that is caused by a virus known as the coxsackie virus. I like to tell parents, “it’s a virus with a name.” It is no different than your child having a cold, it is just a different set of symptoms. And just because a virus has a name does not mean it will make a child sicker or is more dangerous than other viruses. Fun fact: it is named after a town in upstate New York where the virus was discovered.

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  • The Best Strollers of 2017

    Shopping for a baby stroller is simple, right? You’d only answer “yes” to that question if you’ve never been stroller-shopping before. Browse online or at any baby store, and you’ll find endless options for every possible strolling wish, need, and desire. Which ones blow past the bluster and actually live up to their high praise or fancy-sounding name? Which stroller is the one that all your pregnant friends are snatching up? No need to steel yourself for hours of research—we’ve gone ahead and done that for you. Here’s what we found: the five best strollers you can buy in 2017, and who they’re most suited for.  

    Baby Jogger City Mini Single Stroller

    This award-winning stroller is lightweight, compact, and made of the highest-quality materials, which means it’s tough enough to withstand any manner of city terrain.

    Safety: The City Mini has a five-point safety harness and 50+ UV multi-position canopy.
    Style: This well-designed stroller blends seamlessly into upscale city sidewalks.
    Weight: 17.6 lbs
    Foldability: Easily foldable with an ultra-compact auto-lock fold for travel or storage.
    Flexibility for twins or additional siblings of different sizes: A glider board is available for separate purchase, and can be attached for older siblings to hop on and scoot along.
    Other: The City Mini has a multi-position recline, ranging from infant-friendly full recline to slight recline for naptime on-the-go. The City Mini can become part of a travel system using a car seat adapter or additional pram attachment.  
    Price: $259.99
    Bonus points: This one’s best for city-living.

      Bugaboo Donkey

      The Bugaboo Donkey is a high-functioning stroller that is made to grow and adapt to your family’s ever-changing needs.

      Safety: The Donkey has a foot-operated brake with heavy-duty air-filled tires and all-wheel suspension.
      Style: We all know that strollers for multiples can be bulky or unwieldy, but the Donkey uses space efficiently and has a smart look, no matter how many diaper bags you’re towing.
      Weight: 33.4 with 2 seats.
      Foldability: The stroller is foldable and has a carry handle.
      Flexibility for twins or additional siblings of different sizes: The Bugaboo Donkey transitions easily from mono (one baby), duo (a baby and an older toddler), to twin. You choose the set to purchase, and when you need to upgrade the space, it’s done in a matter of easy clicks.   
      Other: With the interchangeable seats, storage, and bassinets, there are actually a whopping 17 different configurations you can choose from, given your need of the moment. The seats are reclinable, reversible, and are carseat compatible.
      Price: $1399-$1979.
      Bonus points: This one’s best for for twins.

        Stokke Xplory

        The Stokke Xplory looks simple enough, but its design is intended for maximum interaction and connection between you and your little one as you stroll.

        Safety: The stroller includes a five point safety harness and adjustable footrests and handles for safe maneuvering.
        Style: The Stokke has a sleek design with a minimalist feel, though it doesn’t skimp on necessary accessories like a canopy, cup holder and underseat storage.
        Weight: 18 lbs.
        Foldability: This stroller folds well and the frame is made of lightweight aluminum, which makes it easy to tote around.
        Flexibility for twins or additional siblings of different sizes: The Stokke is for a single passenger.
        Other: This stroller is height adjustable, so the child seat can be raised to parent eye level, or lowered for rest time, or anything in between.
        Price: $1,225.00
        Bonus points: This one’s best for travel.

          Bumbleride Speed

          A durable jogging stroller, the Bumbleride Speed is made for heavy-duty use for on-the-go parents.

          Safety: A five-point harness, air-filled tires, foot brake, and all-wheel suspension make sure you’re in control of your little one’s safest ride.
          Style: Eco-fabrics and an aluminum frame show off the intention that was put into designing this stroller. No matter where you use it, the stroller has a nice look that meshes function with style.
          Weight: 24 lbs.
          Foldability: The stroller folds easily and stands up folded (one of those little-known stroller perks!) but the large wheels do add a small amount of bulk.
          Flexibility for twins or additional siblings of different sizes: The Bumbleride is for a single passenger.
          Other: This is your go-too jogging stroller and has several accessories that can be used for a day outside, like attachable parent pack and full rain cover.
          Price: $549.
          Bonus points: This one’s best for your outdoorsy lifestyle.

            UPPAbaby Vista Stroller

            This versatile stroller combines form and function into a multitasking piece of gear that you’ll keep for years, no matter how your family grows.

            Safety: The stroller has a five-point safety harness and shock-absorbing rear and front suspension for a smooth, safe ride.
            Style: The UPPAbaby has a classic design that won’t go out of style.
            Weight: 27.5 lbs.
            Foldability: A one-step fold easily collapses the stroller for transport or storage.
            Flexibility for twins or additional siblings of different sizes: The Vista is a multitasking godsend for mothers of multiple children. It easily expands to accommodate a baby and older sibling, with additional adapters. It also accommodates twins, allowing for two bassinets or car seats to attach to the frame. The Piggyback ride-along adapter even lets you transport up to three children at once.
            Other: The UPPAbaby Vista includes a bassinet that can be used from birth, along with the toddler seat and frame, so there’s no need to get a new stroller as your baby grows. It has an extra large storage basket along with removable, washable fabric that’s easy to clean.
            Price: $839.99 - $879.99
            Bonus points: This one’s your “forever” stroller.

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            • Cool Baby Gear Coming in 2017

              Check out our sneak preview from the ABC Kids Expo.

              Article courtesy of Well Rounded NY

              We love a tried and true product that we can turn to baby after baby, and sometimes, after baby again. But with every season comes new innovation in safety, design and ease, and new baby products we just NEED to add to our registry.

              Below are a few of the coolest products we saw at the ABC Kids Expo that will hit shelves in the coming months, and possibly, your nursery too.

              CloudTot
              The makers of the innovative DockATot are upping the ante with their new tech-enabled CloutTot. To the naked eye, the CloudTot looks like the same cozy baby docking station you’ve come to love for co-sleeping, rest-time, tummy time and more, the new version includes a baby awakening system, which alerts parents when no motion has been detected for 12 seconds, and a patent-pending capability to detect moisture within the bedding area, alerting parents when baby is wet...

              Keep reading for more cool baby gear

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            • Asking for Help Doesn’t Make You Less of a Parent

              A mom of twins explains why she said yes to every offer.

              Article courtesy of Well Rounded NY

              I was 40 years old when I got pregnant with my twins. Because of my age, I would have been happy to have one baby. Having two was icing on the cake. I was really excited to be a mom. I would daydream about all the fun I was going to have with my babies — what we would do, where we would go. Only joyful thoughts. It never occurred to me to be nervous or that having twins was going to be incredibly hard. I just assumed that I was going to be able to do it. The plan was for my husband to go to work while I stayed home (alone) with the babies and took care of them. Naive? Crazy? Maybe. I like to think I was blissfully unaware.

              When I came home from the hospital with my babies (my little guy came home the same day as me, my little girl spent a few days in the NICU and then came home) I was so happy to take care of them. I was happy to feed them, bathe them, hold them and so on. I was running on pure adrenaline.

              Within a few days, the adrenaline wore off. I was tired. I was doing all of the feedings (both day and night) and taking care of them for the most part by myself. I thought I could do it all and actually believed that it was my job to do so. I was wrong...

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            • 5 Instagram-Worthy Wooden Baby Toys

              Beautiful toys that won’t make your home look like a toy store.

              Article courtesy of Well Rounded NY

              With limited space and a limited budget, we are always on the hunt for toys that Owen will love, but that won’t make our apartment look like a disorganized toy store. Today I’m rounding up 5 of our favorites that accomplish just that. All of the toys you see here are safe, well-designed and, in my opinion, add beauty to our space rather than take away from it. I love that Owen’s toys are out in our home, and it makes it that much better that they aren’t an eyesore.

              Here are 5 baby toys that won’t make your apartment look like a toy store:

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