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Oh, Beaba! - Continued 

Now that you’ve decided to make your own baby food here are a few helpful tips:

Choose fruits or vegetables that are in-season. Your little one will enjoy eating foods at their prime.  If you can’t find a fruit or vegetable in season, check the frozen food section.

Also check out the Dirty Dozen list. If you aren’t familiar with it, the Dirty Dozen list identifies the top twelve fruits and vegetables with the highest pesticide content. If possible, try to choose organic for those items.

Introduce one new food every 3-5 days and look for signs of allergic reactions.  At a routine checkup, discuss with your pediatrician appropriate foods to introduce to baby and when it is safe to do so.

Food safety is important. The general rule of thumb is that freshly made baby food can stay in the refrigerator for up to 48 hours or frozen for 30 days. To thaw frozen baby food, place it in the refrigerator and allow it to thaw overnight. Do NOT put it in the microwave (even in BPA free containers).On the topic of BPA. All plastic utensils, bowls, sippy cups, and storage conatiners for babies should be BPA free. MomMe loves OXO Tot Baby Blocks. They are BPA free and available in 2 and 4 ounces. These nifty trays stack easily are spill-proof.

After you’ve spent your precious time making baby’s food, you want to make sure it’s clearly labeled.  MomMe loves Post-it® Super Sticky Removable Label Pads. They’re bright and just large enough to fit on the OXO Tot Baby Blocks to identify what the food is and when it was made.

    As always, MomMe knows best. HOWEVER, consult with your pediatrician to decide when it is the right time to introduce solids to little ones. When it is, enjoy the process and whip out the camera. This is a great photo op for MomMe!


    Oh, Beaba! 

    I can not put it any simpler than this. I love to cook! Cooking is my way of expressing my love for my friends and family and, naturally, I wanted to share that love with little H-Man when he arrived. Thanks to my fabulous Chicago friends I am able to do that. I make all of H-Man’s meals using the Beaba Baby Cook. This is by far the easiest baby food cooker on the market. If you have not checked it out yet, stop reading this post and do so right away!

    The Beaba has two basic parts: steamer basket insert and food processer. The steamer insert fits inside the food processer so with the touch of a button I can steam H-Man’s vegetables and meat. When they are done I empty the steamer basket into the food processer and puree. Clean up is even easier. Everything goes in the dishwasher! No more baby gadgets taking up space on the coveted Boon lawn (Side note – Dear Boon: The grass and lawn are too small. Please create a field. MomMe needs room to dry her wine glass from dinner. Thank you!)

    This week I made a batch of lentils, lamb casserole, and mashed potatoes. Little H-Man is a fantastic eater so far and I like to believe it is because he is getting homemade meals filled with love thanks to Beaba!


    Baby On The Move 

    Baby is on the move. Now what? Oh man, that means childproofing. Just when you thought you were done buying more baby gear. Well, the good thing for you is that H-Man is on the move and we just childproofed our house last weekend. Here is Club MomMe’s list of childproofing necessities to keep your little one safe.

    Teething Rail: Why risk ruining that expensive crib you purchased? When your little one starts to pull up and chew on the crib rails you don’t need to! Prince Lionheart makes an excellent teething rail that fits most standard cribs. It’s easy to use as you just snap it over the railing of your crib and your little one can’t pull it off easily. The best part is that it’s only $13.00 on Prince Lionheart’s teething rail is such a simple solution to protect the furniture you spent hours agonizing over before purchasing.

    Safety gates: These are a no brainer. I wish my MomMe had had one on our back door when I was a little explorer. Maybe I wouldn’t have opened the back door and toppled out! The market is flooded with various portable and permanent safety gates. We purchased one that is both. The Dreambaby pressure mount safety gate was the easiest to install and fits our extra wide hallway thanks to the two  free extensions with the gate. My favorite feature of the Dreambaby gate is that it comes in black or white and in two different heights. Knowing we’d be keeping these up for a few years, I purchased the extra tall gates. Keep in mind to measure the width of your doors or space you are using the gate for before ordering. Safety gate widths vary from product to product.

    Cabinet Locks: Rhoost is a company that I just came across in the child safety product market. Aesthetically pleasing and affordable, these safety products are as much for MomMe as baby! They come in black or brown and Rhoost cabinet locks are fully adjustable from one to three inches. They are impossible for baby to remove, but easy enough for MomMe to pack up for a weekend trip to grandma’s house.

    Door Locks: Our hallway is lined with closet doors and accordion doors. We used cabinet locks to secure our accordion doors and the Kidco doorknob lock for the closet doors. We also put one on the outside of our bathroom door. H-Man is just starting to crawl so this is a bit aggressive in the childproofing, but I figured we would get it all done now rather than in stages.

    Corner Guards: I love Rhoost corner guards. No more sticky, toxic goop holding on foam pieces to the corners of my coffee tables. The Rhoost corner guars snap on to any corner to keep your little one’s noggin safe as he runs through the house. And, the best part is that they come in a variety of colors to match your furniture.  Aah, finally a corner guard that is aesthetically pleasing to our design oriented mamas out there!

    Outlet Plugs: Lesson learned. Count your outlets before ordering (I had to place a second order)! The market is flooded with outlet covers. Most are very similar and all have the same objective – protect the little one from shoving his fingers in the outlet. We chose the Rhoost outlet covers for our house because they are BPA free.

    TV and Furniture Straps: I saved the most important for last.  In the past month I’ve seen too many headlines about critically injured infants or toddlers because a flat screen television or bookshelf crashed on top of them. Furniture straps simply attach to the back of the item and then to the studs in the wall. Use a stud finder to center the item and then take out that power drill and attach.  I secured H-Man’s dresser, changing table and the bookshelves in our house using the KidCo anti-tip furniture straps. Our flat screen TV is secured using the KidCo anti tip TV safety strap. I can breath easier knowing that if I turn around and H-Man starts climbing the walls he might fall, but he won’t be crushed by furniture. Please secure your television and furniture. This is such a simple task that can save your child’s life.

    Other Tidbits: These are other childproofing items that I have stashed away for the day we need them: Mommy’s Helper toilet lock, spout covers (if you can resist the Skip Hop Moby bath spout cover, you’re stronger than I am), Safety 1st adjustable multi purpose strap and a Safety 1st oven lock.


    Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Apptivity Case

    My son is now six months old, which is a magical time for babies.  They can now see the world much as adults do, clear and in focus.  This transition brings a new discovery every day (okay, really every time he wakes up from a nap!) and they are fascinated by everything that you touch.

    Naturally, babies are the most interested in the things that you like and use the most, such as your cell phone, computer, and yes I will admit, my television remote.  Why my baby loves this dirty and germ-infested thing, I have no idea.  But he does!

    Enter the Fisher Price Laugh & Learn Apptivity Case for iPhone and iPod.  The case is designed to turn your phone or music player into a functional, yet non-phone toy for your baby.   What on earth does that mean?  Your phone is encased in a large, colorful plastic case, with large round handles on the side complete with a few rattles.  Baby can now clutch your phone without dropping it repeatedly and getting frustrated, or whacking himself in the face for the tenth time.

    The best part of the case is a cover for your home button, so that baby cannot access your contact list, email or actually make a call.  Your little one can drool all they want on the phone or iPod, and your don’t have to worry about the functionality of your phone.  Or your baby licking all of the germs you acquired throughout the day off your screen.

    The apptivity case works with all touch screen iPods and iPhones.  Fisher Price has a number of cute and educational free apps available in the , that teach a baby where their nose is, the sounds a cow makes, and they can create a dance for Mickey.

    Before you start to think that my six-month old baby is some sort of app genius, the apps for him are more background interest as opposed to a true game for him.  The apps are designed more for a baby around a year-and-a-half to two years, but they are actually one of the more engaging and enjoyable baby toys for parents!

    The case is priced right about the same as a normal iPhone case, and with the free apps, I think it is a real baby bargain! Buy it here: Fisher-Price Laugh & Learn Apptivity Case


    Modern, Sophisticated Baby Book by Ruby Love Designs

    So you are in the market for a baby book.  As a new mom, you will spend hours dedicated to capturing all of your little one's firsts, detailing his family tree, fondly remembering your baby shower(s) and the price of milk the day your baby is born.  Okay, I chose to detail the price of a latte instead, I find that far my relevant today!

    Which brings me to the realization you will probably discover as you search for a baby book.  Just like documenting the price of milk for your baby is not quite in, so are the vast majority of baby books out on the market.  

    They are, for the most part, bland, boring and generic.  Featuring blue, pink or yellow juvenile designs and thoughtless fill-in-the-blanks, these baby books seem to be stuck in a time warp.  We spend so much time and effort on these books, that it only seems fair to want a book worthy of this love and devotion.  

    Seriously, is it wrong to ask for a baby book that we would actually be proud to share with our little one?  I know what you are thinking, I can always make my own.  That might be great for a crafty or artistic mommy, but for someone who has trouble ironing letters onto a onesie, that option is not available to me.  Thankfully Etsy was created for moms like me!

    Enter Ruby Love Designs, a Los Angeles mom who was tired of the cookie cutter baby books and decided to turn her graphic design skills into crafting modern, sophisticated baby memory books.  Thankfully for us mommies, Ruby Love Designs has ushered in a new era in baby book journaling, with thoughtful pages, a calendar to mark milestones, special events and occasions, blank pages so you don't have to worry about cramming in all of your own favorite firsts onto a page featuring only generic ones, and a pack of photo adhesive sleeves so you don't have to tape or glue pictures.  

    And the best part, in my perfectionist opinion, is that the book is a three ring binder, so you can remove pages and write on them on a flat surface, without having to worry about a photo on the next page messing up your handwriting.  Oh yeah, I am that kind of mommy.

    You can also add additional page packs for holidays, outings, year 2, and years 3-5.  My only (small) gripe is that there is no specific baby bris page, though there is a baby dedication page.  Hopefully more mommies will ask for this page and it will be available in the future!

    My favorite design is the Dwell Studio Blue and Green Animals Baby Book, which you can personalize with you baby's name for a small fee.  Finally, a baby book worth spending so much time on!