tag: baby

Posted by in baby & children

bonnie + bear's list of essentials - part 2

hi friends! as a follow up to our first list of essential (0-6 months), today i’m sharing our new essential list for ages 6 -12 months-ish!

as i’ve said before, i remember early in my pregnancy when it was time to start thinking about a registry and i froze. i had no idea what i needed! all i knew was that i wanted to go about raising my baby as simply as possible. i wanted to stick to well made products that would last in our family for generations to come. and if i could help it, i wanted to avoid plastic as much as possible.

the first thing i did was e-mail a handful of my favorite momma friends to ask them what their advice was. i had them list the top 10 must-haves and then let me know about anything they really felt was unnecessary. from those lists, i compiled everyone’s must haves and made a list for myself. then i began researching. i looked in to each product, where they were made, if there was a greener or more organic option and whether or not i thought we really needed it or not. safety was of course taken into consideration as well (for example, safety won over being green when it came to a carseat). whenever possible, we also tried to use hand-me-downs or purchase used goods.

even though we were incredibly thoughtful about what we asked for, we still ended up with too much, a few things we don’t use often and lots of lessons learned!

of course, every person, every baby and every situation is different, but when i was researching, i found everyone’s ‘must have lists’ super helpful. so here’s mine! bear is currently 14 months old, so this list is probably good for 6-15 months-ish.

must haves:
- charlie’s soap. we love this for all baby clothes and cloth diapers.
- ergobaby carrier with infant insert. i like to use this for longer, more strenuous wears (like on hikes and to bike races).
- carseat (of course). we got the britax marathon 70-G3. we like it b/c it’s an ‘all in one’ and we won’t have to buy another one later, BUT the downside is that you can’t pop it out and carry him around in itt, though it’s not been an issue for us.
- organic baby soap. we love sweet baby shampoo
- inglesina table chair (instead of a high chair)- oh man do we love this! attach it to any table and take it to restaurants. bear loves his and happily plays in it while we eat and cook.
baby gates. after trying several, we decided we liked the easy and simplicity of this one.
- baby monitor. this wasn’t necessary until he started napping in his own room, but now i like to be able to see him!
blender & food processor. for making smoothies and food more baby bite-sized!
books. all of the books!

optionals (that we LOVE):
- zutano booties – the only socks/shoes that will stay on. seriously.
snuza hero. clip it on their diaper (or pants) while they sleep and it vibrates if they stop breathing, then alarms.  we finally just stopped using this when he turned one, but i loved it for the first year!
snugly blanket – we’re attached to this one from from saranoni.
sippy caps – we use and like these from lifefactory.
- stroller. becoming more and more helpful the heavier he gets!
music. we love listening to music and making noise with music makers!
- crib. we still don’t use the crib much yet, though i’m sure we will use it more and more. (we co-sleep. gasp!)
- little remedies tylenol – just in case of an emergency. this brand doesn’t contain parabens, high fructose corn syrup, dye or gluten.
- baby in-sight mirror – so you can see your babe while you drive.
- organic waterproof pads – for under the bed sheets or crib sheets.
- travel crib – for traveling, this is a must! we love our baby bjorn travel crib light.
safety precautions - like this, this and this.

nonessential: (in our opinion!)

- baby tub. i just put him in the bath with me. :)
baby spoons and dishes. we just use things we already have, it works great!
- wipes warmer – if it’s really cold i just run the wipes through a little warm water.
- hooded towels or baby bath cloths – we just use regular towels.
- any kind of play mobile thingy (we make-do just fine with things from around the house).
- baby swing. we haven’t had one and haven’t missed it (though i know every baby is different!).
- noise machine – we haven’t used one and haven’t missed it.
- bouncer or walker
- nursing bras/tanks – i just wear tops that i can either pull up or down.

books i read (and recommend!):
- the baby book
the vaccine book
the womanly art to breastfeeding
the eco-nomical guide
vegan pregnancy survival guide

now it’s you’re turn! what do you find absolutely necessary? nonessential? i’ll meet you in the comments section!

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paelas knitting patterns

July 25, 2014

Posted by in baby & children

  paelas knitting patterns (2)

i can’t seem to stop thinking about how beautiful paelas knitted patterns are. they are so sweet and sophisticated! i have always wanted to be able to follow a knitting pattern. years ago, i took a few lessons and learned enough to make some scarves and a few pairs of gloves, but nothing as intricate and beautiful as these. i absolutely love the attention to details and feminine touches. i’m sure they make little girls feel so special!

p.s. follow paelas on instagram for more loveliness!

paelas knitting patterns (1)

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Posted by in baby & children

where are you going little one?

i have fallen in love with this sweet little book proposal by bryanna millis where bright collages and rhyming couplets take readers on an adventure in each month of the year.

bryanna’s inspiration: “When I became a mom in 2011 I struggled to fit art making into my life. Hours of experimenting with a wide variety of collage materials were a thing of the past, as time and space went to the baby. Yet he also provided a new source of inspiration. In the very early days, my son loved to lie on his changing table, kicking his legs and laughing. “Where are you going, little one?”, I’d ask him, and offer up rhyming answers of my own. As new nicknames came to mind–little fish, little star, little dream–I would rhyme couplets about the adventures of each character.

her inspiration is so sweet and completely relatable, don’t you think? head on over to bryanna’s kickstarter project to help make this book come to life. i hope to read it to bear one day so badly!

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bonnie + bear's baby essentials

before i had bear, i had never spent much time around babies. in fact, my first diaper change was on my own son after we got home from the hospital (other than the few practice runs i did on mr. fox)! i remember early in my pregnancy when it was time to start thinking about a registry and i froze. i had no idea what i needed! all i knew was that i wanted to go about raising my baby as simply as possible. i wanted to stick to well made products (handmade if possible) that would last in our family for generations to come. and if i could help it, i wanted to avoid plastic as much as possible.

the first thing i did was e-mail a handful of my favorite momma friends to ask them what their advice was. i had them list the top 10 must-haves and then let me know about anything they really felt was unnecessary. from those lists, i compiled everyone’s must haves and made a list for myself. then i began researching. i looked in to each product, where they were made, if there was a greener or more organic option and whether or not i though i really needed it or not. safety was of course taken into consideration as well (for example, safety won over being green when it came to a carseat). whenever possible, we also tried to use hand-me-downs or purchase used goods.

even though we were incredibly thoughtful about what we asked for, we still ended up with too much, a few things we don’t use often and lots of lessons learned!

of course, every person, every baby and every situation is different, but when i was researching, i found everyone’s ‘must have lists’ super helpful. so here’s mine! consider it ‘bonnie and bear’s list of essentials‘. and please keep in mind that my babe is only 5.5 months old. hence, this list is probably good for 0-6 months. i’ll most likely need to post a new version for 6-12 months and so on.

lessons learned: had i knew then what i know now:

1) i would have not stressed out over getting his nursery finished (other than a few diaper changes, he hasn’t spent much time in the room yet).

2) i would have ordered 1 of several different kinds of cloth diapers to try. there are so many different kinds and it’s impossible to know what you’ll want for your baby before you try some different types out.

must haves:
- charlie’s soap. we love this for all baby clothes and cloth diapers.
- babybjorn babysitter (we have the organic one) and LOVE it. it’s the perfect place for him to hang while i shower or cook dinner, and it’s bounciness makes it double as a bouncy seat. it’s also great for newborns with little neck strength.
- wrap - i have a solly wrap and am not sure what i would do without it. i wear him around the house, around town and while i grocery shop.
- organic nursing pads. i had no idea how much i would be using these!
- sleep sacks- the perfect nighttime gown.
- ergobaby carrier with infant insert. i like to use this for longer, more strenuous wears (like on hikes and to bike races).
- carseat (of course). we got the britax marathon 70-G3. we like it b/c it’s an ‘all in one’ and we won’t have to buy another one later, BUT the downside is that you can’t pop it out and carry him around in itt, though it’s not been an issue for us.
- lots of snuggly swaddle blankets- especially for those first few months! we also made several using organic sherpa cloth.
- disposable diapers for the first few weeks/months until he can fit into cloth diapers (if you’re cloth diapering, or unless you bought newborn size cloth diapers). we used 7th generation and loved them.
- moses basket – this is the perfect basket for daytime naps and diaper changes (we found ours second hand).
- organic baby soap, lotion and diaper rash cream (we like burts bees and babyganics)
- cloth diapers (more on that below)

optionals (that we LOVE):
- cradle- i have the cradle my grandaddy made me when i was a baby and this is where bear naps during the day.
- zutano booties – the only socks/shoes that will stay on. seriously.
snuza hero. clip it on their diaper (or pants) while they sleep and it vibrates if they stop breathing, then alarms. it helps me sleep so much better (i’m a worrier).
- inglesina table chair (instead of a high chair)- oh man do we love this! attach it to any table and take it to restaurants so they don’t use those gross high chairs. bear loves his and happily plays in it while we eat and cook (though he couldn’t sit up in it until he was about 4 months old).
- rocking chair- we lived without one for months and didn’t really miss having one, but use it frequently now that it’s in our living room.
- bottles. we have some glass ones, but i’ve never used them. however, if you ever want to leave your baby for more than 2 hrs in the first 6 months you’ll need some, or you could always use a baby syringe (the kind without a needle).
- pump. i do have a pump but have only used it once. it’s nice to have but has not been essential for us. (note: check with your insurance, most all will cover this expense for you!)
- stroller. the only time i’ve ever used my stroller is when i go run. for around town, hikes and walks i just wear him. if you don’t run, i think you could get by without one.
- baby monitor. i’ve just recently started using one when he falls asleep in a room that i’m ready to leave, but i usually just keep him close.
- crib. we haven’t used his crib yet, though i’m sure we will use it more and more in the months to come. (we co-sleep. gasp!)
- bumbo – we just started using this because it seems like he really wanted to sit up ‘on his own’.
- sophie the giraffe – not sure why, but she’s a big hit for teething days!
- little remedies tylenol – just in case of an emergency. this brand doesn’t contain parabens, high fructose corn syrup, dye or gluten.
- mother love nipple cream. trust me.
- baby in-sight mirror – so you can see your babe while you drive.
- organic waterproof pads – for under the bed sheets or crib sheets.

nonessential:
- travel crib or pack-n-play (depends on your sleeping arrangement though).
- baby tub. i just put him in the bath with me. :)
- wipes warmer – if it’s really cold i just run the wipes through a little warm water.
- hooded towels or baby bath cloths – we just use regular towels.
- any kind of play mobile thingy (we make do with things from around the house).
- baby swing. we haven’t had one and haven’t missed it (though every baby is different).
- noise machine – we haven’t used one and haven’t missed it.
- bath toys (maybe later?)
- bouncer or walker
- nursing bras/tanks – i just wear tops that i can either pull up or down.

if your cloth diapering:
- cloth diapers (a different topic by itself! we’re using a mixture of gro-via diapers with organic inserts,  organic bumgenius and organic babee greens with wool rebourne covers.)
– organic cloth wipes
- diaper sprayer (will only need after he starts eating solids, around 6-12 months)
- 2 wet bags (one large for the house one small for the go- you’ll put dirty dipes in it until you wash them)

books i read (and recommend!):
- the baby book
the vaccine book
the womanly art to breastfeeding
the eco-nomical guide
vegan pregnancy survival guide

now it’s you’re turn! what do you find absolutely necessary? nonessential? i’ll meet you in the comments section!

photo by my dearest friend: callie lynch.

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kindred oak holiday showcase

December 9, 2013

Posted by in handmade

kindred oak

paige smith is the owner and creative behind kindred oak clothing for little babes. after 9 years of retail experience, she found herself saying goodbye to start a new chapter with her husband and new babe. having no professional training in sewing, designing, or business, she started kindred oak with $200, a passion for creativity and desire to fill the void of fashionable children’s clothing in today’s market.

inspired by her husband’s native american background, appreciation for the great outdoors and of course her baby boy, each clothing creation is unique, earthy and stylish. i especially love the wide selection of gender-neutral items and darling choices for little boys (which can be hard to find sometimes!). needless to say, i can’t wait to get bear into a beanie and matching hoodie. :)

paige has also kindly offered an exclusive discount for GHTR readers! enter code ‘GHTR15’ to receive 15% off your purchase at kindred oak. expires 12/31/13. not valid with other offers. thanks, paige!

pssst.. they also offer free gift wrap!

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pictures of bear

November 7, 2013

Posted by in baby & children

my sweet boy, bear. (4)

instead of sharing a normal point and shoot this week, i thought i’d catch you up on some photos of my honey bun, bear. he just turned 9 weeks old! i can’t believe how quickly he’s developing. he started smiling a few weeks ago and the big news this week is that i can make him laugh! it’s the happiest sound my ears have ever heard. he loves to stretch, take naps in my lap and snuggle with toaster.

my sweet boy, bear. (7)

my sweet boy, bear. (6)

my sweet boy, bear. (2)

my sweet boy, bear. (1)

my sweet boy, bear. (3)

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Posted by in simple living

everything i know about cloth diapering

cloth diapering. whew! when i first started learning about it i was incredibly overwhelmed. i had no idea there were so many options, methods and opinions out there! all i knew is that i wanted to use cloth, but i had no idea where to start. so, i first started reading about them in the eco-nomical baby guide (which i highly recommend). i then reached out to everyone (i mean everyone!) i knew who was currently or had cloth diapered and asked for their opinions and advice. following that, i did a ton (and i mean a ton) of research online.

this is by no means an ‘all inclusive’ guide to cloth diapering, but i will share everything with you that i’ve learned so far, and also what i decided to do myself. i will also say that i think any one of these methods can totally work, you just have to decide what you want to go with. or as many moms have, go with a little bit of everything. cloth diapering moms, please feel free to add your advice in the comments section!

why cloth diaper? oh boy. where do i start? in a nutshell, it’s cheaper, healthier and much more eco-friendly.

in more than a nutshell:

cost: each baby goes through about 6,000 diapers during the first two years of life. thus, the average child costs about $1,600 to diaper for two years in disposable diapers (that’s about $66 a month). the cost of cloth diapering can vary considerably, from as low as $300 for a basic set-up to $800 for a more elaborate set-up. despite this large price range, it’s usually possible to buy a generous mix of everything you need for $300-500, most of which will probably last for two (or more) children. that means the cost of cloth diapering is about one tenth the cost of disposables.

health: disposable diapers contain traces of dioxin (an extremely toxic by-product of the paper-bleaching process) which is a carcinogenic chemical listed by the EPA as the most toxic of all cancer-linked chemicals. it’s also banned in most countries, but not in the united states (lucky us). they also contain tributyl-tin or TBT (a toxic pollutant known to cause hormonal problems in humans and animals) and sodium polyacrylate (a type of super absorbent polymer or SAP, which becomes a gel-like substance when wet). there’s also a concern that scrotal temperature is increased in boys wearing disposable diapers, which will blunt or completely abolish the testicular cooling mechanism important for normal spermatogenesis.

environment: it’s estimated that 27.4 billion disposable diapers are consumed every year in the united states (whoa). though the instructions on a disposable diaper packages say that all fecal matter should be deposited in the toilet before discarding, less than one half of one percent of all waste from single-use diapers goes into the sewage system. over 92% of all single-use diapers end up in a landfill. no one knows for sure how long it takes for a disposable diaper to decompose, but it is estimated to be about 250-500 years, which is long after your children, grandchildren and great, great, great grandchildren will be gone.

disposable diapers are responsible for sixty times more solid waste and use twenty times more raw materials, like crude oil and wood pulp. they also use 2.3 times more water to make than cloth diapering. over 300 pounds of wood, 50 pounds of petroleum feedstocks and 20 pounds of chlorine are used to produce disposable diapers for one baby EACH YEAR. basically, we’re spending over $300 million dollars just to discard disposable diapers each year, whereas cotton diapers are reused up to 200 times before being turned into rags and being used (still) around the home.

check out this article for more sources and info.

types of cloth diapers

1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5

types of cloth diapers.

my biggest learning curve came when i started learning about all the different types of cloth diapers. here’s what i learned.

flat diapers: flat diapers are what are grandmother’s used. they are made from one large square of thin cotton that can be folded in a myraid of ways. you then secure them using pins or snappis. they are not waterproof so the use of a diaper cover is necessary. they are inexpensive and dry quickly, but are rather complicated and require the use of a lot of folding techniques.

prefold diapers: prefold diapers are made from several layers of cotton (or hemp) that are already sewn together with a thicker section in the middle, which saves you some folding time. you can then secure them using pins or snappis. they are not waterproof so the use of a diaper cover is necessary. they are inexpensive and dry quickly, but are rather complicated and require the use of a lot of folding techniques.

fitted diapers: fitted diapers resemble disposable diapers. they have a contoured shape and have gathered edges around the legs and generally close using snaps or velcro. they are not waterproof so the use of a diaper cover is necessary.  they are more expensive than pre-folds, but are much easier to use.

pocket diapers: pocket diapers are fitted diapers with a pocket on the inside for inserting either a prefold or thick pad. they are more expensive, but easy to put on. they do require stuffing however which can get a little messy. most brands you’ll find contain a waterproof layer called ‘PUL’, so they do not need a diaper cover.

all-in-one diapers: also known as AIO’s, all-in-ones are fitted diapers that have an outer waterproof layer. they are made from several layers of cotton or hemp and go on just like disposables. they are ideal for out of home use, but may not be practical for daily use since frequent washing and drying reduces the effectiveness of the waterproof outer layer. they are very convenient but the downside is that they cost more and the entire diaper must be washed every time it’s gotten wet or messy.

types of diaper covers wool covers: from rebourne and babee greens | pul covers: 1| 2 | 3

types of diaper covers:

after reading all of the different kinds of diapers, you’ll notice that several of them also require a diaper cover. and of course, there are several different types to choose from! if you decide to use flat diapers, prefold diapers or fitted diapers, you’ll need to couple the diaper with a diaper cover. you basically have 2 options:

1. waterproof pul diaper cover: most diaper covers come with a PUL lining is a type of waterproof plastic fabric. it can either be on the outside of the diaper cover or hidden within the layers of material. it’s convenient and very effective, but somewhat controversial. it’s of course made of plastic and not something you’d necessary want to eat off of (i.e. so do you want it next to your babies most sensitive parts?). if you’re concerned, do a little research on the use of PUL plastics in diapers and decide for yourself what you think is best.

2. wool diaper cover: wool diaper covers are by far the most eco-friendly and natural. wool is a natural, breathable, sustainable fiber that is also naturally flame resistant. it helps babies stay cool in the summer and warm in the winter (just like it does for sheep). it’s breathable, moisture-resistant, and anti-bacterial. wool can absorb a ton of moisture (30% of its weight) and still not feel wet to the touch. urine is neutralized by the natural oil in the wool, so it doesn’t retain any odors. while wool does require separate hand washing, they don’t need to washed after each wear: simply hang to dry and use again.

other options:

organic: most of the above options come in both an organic and non-organic version. do some research and decide what’s best for you (though i feel like organic is always the way to go!).

one size or multi sizes: fitted diapers, pocket diapers, all-in-one diapers and both types of diaper covers generally come in two options: either a ‘one size fits all‘ option or a ‘small, medium, large‘ option. the one size fits all options are usually made by sporting several snapping options to grow with your baby. you can also of course go with small, medium and large diapers, but you’ll have to buy more of each one which ups your costs considerably.

how many do you need?

diapers: you’ll need somewhere between 18-36 diapers, depending on how frequently you want to do laundry. keep in mind that newborns generally go through about 12 diapers a day. a great starting point would be 24.

diaper covers: somewhere between 6-12 diaper covers should suffice. less if you use wool (since they won’t need to be washed as frequently) and more if you use a PUL type cover.

cloth diaper accessories

other cloth diapering accessories:

along with diapers and covers, here are a few other accessories you may find essential.

doublers: doublers are used to add absorbancy to your diapers and are a great solution for naptime and overnights.

diaper pale: grab a bucket, pail or garbage can to keep by your changing station. line it with a wet bag (see below) and place your dirty diapers here. when it’s time to do laundry, take the whole bag out and wash everything together.

wet bags: you’ll generally need two wet bags: 1 large one for your in-nursery diaper pale and a smaller one to take with you. these are waterproof bags that you’ll use to hold the dirty diapers in until you get home to wash them.

wipes: cloth wipes go hand in hand with cloth diapers. again, grab 18-36 or make them yourself from old t-shirts or flannel.

snappis: snappis are used to fasten a prefold or flat diaper onto a newborn (you won’t need these if you’re using diapers that have a snap or velcro closure system built in).

diaper sprayer: affix a special sprayer to the toilet and use it to spray off the diapers before putting them in your pail.

what i chose:

with so many options, it really was hard to choose which system i wanted to go with. however, i felt that if i was going to go to the effort to cloth diaper, i wanted to do it in the greenest way possible. after much research, this is what we decided to get:

– the above accessories
– 24 organic cotton one-size fitted diapers from babee greens
– 6 handmade wool one size wool diaper covers from rebourne and babee greens
– 24 organic cotton wipes
– 12 organic cotton doublers

whew! i think that’s all i know. do you feel better or are you totally confused? mommas, feel free to chime in! xox, bonnie

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meet bear!

September 12, 2013

Posted by in handmade

meet baby bear! (8)

hey friends! i’m popping in today to share someone very special with you. (if you follow me over on instagram, you met him last week!) our sweet baby boy was born last tuesday, september 3rd weighing 6lbs 11oz and measuring 18.5″ tall. his name is bear james forkner. bear because we love it and james after his great grandfather.

though i’m sure i’ll share his birth story soon, in short we’re both doing great. i’m healing quickly and feel nearly back to normal. bear is absolutely wonderful. he’s so sweet tempered! he hasn’t even cried for more than a few seconds (yet). he’s feeding beautifully and had an excellent first check up. he’s full of personality, silly expressions and cute stretches.

we’re completely in love and smitten by him. i didn’t know i was capable of loving someone so much, so quickly. we feel so blessed!

meet baby bear! (3)

meet baby bear! (4)

meet baby bear! (5)

meet baby bear! (2)

meet baby bear! (6)

meet baby bear! (7)

 

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