Archive for the ‘Parenting’ Category

How Do You Keep Your Baby Safe?

Probably not by having them lift heavy equipment, right? September is officially Baby Safety Month, but isn’t every day about keeping your kid safe when you’re a parent?

We would appreciate your tips, because we’re building a handy list to share with all you Rockabyers.

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Now help us build the ultimate list of baby safety tips! Just post them below. And because you’re sharing, we will too . . . a fitting song for the occasion:

“New Born” from Lullaby Renditions of Muse

For more kid-handling tips, check out posts below!

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 “How to Say Goodbye”

 

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 “Tips for Baby Proofing Your Life”

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 “Tips for Holding Other People’s Babies”

 

Back to school means back to bugs.

And I’m not just talking about viruses — although those are certainly set to increase exponentially now that my kids are back in the petri dish of preschool; I’m talking about lice.

Even typing the word grosses me out.

Remember when they would pass out those black plastic combs at school and the teachers made everyone brush their hair? (Those days were traumatic for me since I have tangle-prone hair and the comb always got stuck.)

But now I realize the comb wasn’t a gift, like I always thought. It was a preventative measure. It wasn’t generosity on the part of the public school system or concern for the quality of our dos —it was a lice check. That’s right — they were searching for parasites in our scalps.

My kids’ school does lice checks once a week and in a manner even more subtle than the free comb day — and much like free comb day, it took me a while to get it.

Mondays my girls come home with the cutest hairdos—adorable, little updos where the teachers have lovingly parted and brushed their hair, and then put it up in a variety of cute ponytails, twists, braids or buns. My usually unkempt kids, who at their best boast crooked pigtails to contain their endless tangles (they’ve got my hair), come home from school looking like the kind of children that populate Gap catalogs — scrubbed, apple-cheeked cherubs.

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Okay, maybe not so scrubbed since there’s usually still dirt all over their faces, but at least their hair looks like it hasn’t been through a lawn mower. It looks nice. And for a long time, I didn’t wonder why — I just assumed it was a beloved teacher bestowing some special attention.

It isn’t. It’s a lice check. The best way to look for nits — and to get the kids to sit through the nit pick — is to play beauty parlor and give them cute dos. I found this out not from the teachers but from my oldest daughter who brought me a hairbrush and a bag of hair bands and begged me to look for bugs in her hair.

“You want me to do what?” I asked.

Gross.

I gave her some crooked ponytails without looking too close at her head. They can get nit picky with it at school.

 

Our song pick of the day to deal with any bug woes:“Don’t Panic” from Lullaby Renditions of Coldplay.rbcoldplay

Click link to listen to it on Spotify and buy your own copy of the album HERE.

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Do you think there’s anything wrong with this photo?

This is a lesson from my daughter’s preschool, where she started just 3 months ago, and has been doing great. Each week the teachers put her completed lessons in her “Little D” file so we can follow her development. It’s been fun to see her lessons about drawing shapes, identifying letters and things, writing numbers and then, obviously based on the above, learning words that rhyme.

Can you tell what word I had an issue with? I’m asking you, dear readers, because I value your opinion, honestly. Remember when I asked you about these signs at a local store? You had a lot to say.

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Am I being ridiculous making a hubbub about seeing the word “fat” in my daughter’s lesson? Aren’t there so many other words that can’t be used in a hurtful way? (I guess “rat” could be too. Or maybe people don’t like being called a “cat” either?) Couldn’t she have used the word “hat” instead?

I know her teachers are sweethearts and by no means would they teach that word to be used in a judgmental way. Hell, maybe they were talking about the fat of food, having a fat bank account. Should I ask them?

A friend of mine said at her daughters’ preschool they aren’t allowed to bring in books with that word, so it’s clear they’re sensitive about the use of the word. Let’s face it, most women are. While all the women (not just mothers) I showed the lesson to all immediately had a reaction to the “fat” content (ranging from, “yeah, they could have used another word,” to “oh…yeah” and a frown), most of the fathers I showed it to didn’t think it was a big deal.

In our household that is among the three-letter words we don’t teach or speak, but more on bad words later. So tell me…

Would you suggest cutting out or ignoring the “fat?”

Sound off below!

 

Our song pick of the day to make you think on this: “Do You Realize??” from Lullaby Renditions of The Flaming Lips. Click link to listen to it on Spotify and buy your own copy of the album HERE.

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When do you know you’re ready to welcome a dog into your life?

Or for a couple of us Rockabye Baby team members . . .

When do you know you’re ready to welcome a dog back into your life?

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Our VP and Creative Director, Lisa Roth, is contemplating that now . . .

First-Time Mommy’s dog of 15 years, Pogi, sadly passed away during her second trimester, and she waited until her daughter was 2 before welcoming a new furry friend (that’s 5-month-old Charcoal above) into their family last month to join their cat, Cricket, and parakeet, Echo (as in Echo Park). “Having a child didn’t change the feeling that our home just wasn’t the same without a dog. What’s one more set of poop to clean up, right?”

And here are two more lovable four-legged friends in the Rockabye family: Zara belongs to Kyle in our sales department and Penne belongs to Chrissy, our web designer.

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So, the question again is Dog . . . or Not? Or would you recommend a different animal?

Post your thoughts in the comments and check out more animal talk posts by clicking on the links!

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Animal Talk

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We Will, We Will Rock You (to Sleep)

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What to Do with Those Pouch Caps

Who or what inspired your name?

Thanks to everyone who entered our recent Story Behind Your Name contest. We enjoyed learning the stories about how many of you got your name. They ranged from being inspired by family heroes or historical figures to just being something “pretty.”

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And there was one story we just had to share, because, you’ll want to add these two names to your list if you’re expecting . . . they’re as musical as they come:

From RB fan Randy:

Our son’s name is Halen, as in Eddie Van . . . the name came to us at a Van Halen concert in 2007 . . . my wife and I were there with a friend, a huge Bob Dylan fan, who recently found out that they were having a boy . . .

We were teasing him that their baby’s name would be Dylan . . . that got us talking about cool rock-and-roll baby names. . . as a joke, someone said “Halen” . . . it actually sounded awesome, so that was the name we chose when our son was born 3 yrs later.

We are now expecting a little girl in September, and her name will be Hannah, after Kathleen Hanna from Bikini Kill.

Congrats to your family, Randy! And to your future rockers. Need more name inspiration? Perhaps you’ll find the perfect name in our catalog.

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Most of the time, my kid is pretty darn sweet . . . but as she’s gotten older (she’s a whopping 2!), I’ve got to admit that some things she says to me can sting, even though I don’t think she really knows what she’s saying. Or does she?

Case in point, a midnight conversation we had recently when she should’ve been sleeping, and I was trying to meet an article deadline.

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I don’t know what annoyed me more, that she wanted to be a princess, or that she wanted me to be the Hulk?

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A couple weeks ago we asked you how you felt about these signs. And people had a lot to say about it.

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You voted and we listened.

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So our bear went to work!

Do you like what he did or would you have done something else?

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Tell us below!

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My two-year-old is a screamer: She screams when she’s happy, mad, annoyed, excited — heck, she even screams when she’s indifferent. And it’s not your usual pint-sized shriek; hers is a full-throat, blood-curling, headache-inducing howl. And I’m so over it. I think I’ve got low-level PTSD from her acoustic sucker punches.

She’s little and her verbal skills are still developing, so I get that she needs a way to express her opinions — and for the most part, her loud vocalizations are better than the physical beatings she used to belt out.

The lesson about the difference between an “inside voice” versus an “outside voice” is on repeat in our house, so far without much effect (maybe I need to explain it louder?).

But here’s what I’ve realized trying to turn the volume down on my kid: It’s a noisy world out there with all the people gabbing into phones, the ridiculously loud restaurants, the constant pings and zings of text messages, the Muzak pumped into public places . . . I could go on but I already sound like a grumpy grandpa.

Suddenly, my two-year-old singing “Meow Meow Meow” (her punk-rock ode to kitty cats) at the top of her lungs isn’t nearly as troublesome as the two bros at the café table next to me discussing their conquests the prior night.

We all need to use our inside voices a little bit more. Unless you’re on stage, in which case, belt out your meows as loud as you can. Without the band, the Screamers, after all, there would be no Dead Kennedys or Bad Brains.

I wonder how Tomata du Plenty’s mom put up with it.

 

For “inside voice” tunes that take down the volume, you know where to go, right?

 

I’ve been seeing some interesting signage as of late relating to children. Some are quite clever and amusing while others get under my skin, like the ones below. Am I overreacting? It’s actually at a local bird store I used to frequent pre-motherhood.

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What’s your initial reaction to them? Did one or both of these signs make you instantly laugh, or did they make you feel like “Breaking the Law” by doing one of several things to them. (By the way, I love birds so I totally get they’re fragile.)

Share your thoughts in the comments below! And cast your vote in today’s poll below to determine what our bear should do to the signs.

We’ll share what our bear’s friends (that would be you fans) decide in a future post.

 

Rockabye Baby’s Good Baby, Bad Baby is available now! Get your copy now!

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Shop our 4th of July Sale Now! 

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I saw Johnny’s dad naked…sort of.

Ahhh, the swimming pool, an innocent enough pastime, a Sunday afternoon spent frolicking with your kids in the friendly splatter of the community pool, a wonderland of waterslides, hot tubs, floaties, artificial currents and…nearly naked bodies!

Something happens to parents when they arrive at the community pool. It’s the opposite of whatever happens to women when they go to the hot tub with their girlfriends on a ski weekend: “I’m so fat.” “No, you’re not, I am.” “It’s just this muffin top.” “For me, it’s my thighs.” “They don’t rub together like mine!” “Lulu Lemon called, they want their pants back.” “Whatever, I’m the one with the saggy boobs…” And on and on they drone, hating every square inch of their skin like it’s a fungus.

Not so at the community pool. All that self-conscious, body-loathing, inner/outer speak evaporates from the cells of their subcutaneous like chlorine from a 140-degree hot tub. It happens somewhere between the pool deck and the family/group/unisex (throw in old people)/special change rooms — where parents act like they’re in the comfort/privacy of their rumpus room.

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“Johnny, socks off, the floor’s wet,” screams the mom stripped down to her string bikini, ass up, stuffing jackets into a locker, muffin top firmly atop. “Suzie, underwear off before you put your swimsuit on!” barks the dad with man boobs as he bogarts a change room from a five-year-old looking to pee in a shower.

Formerly respectable, overly body-conscious folk suddenly become titans of the community aquatic experience, and they could care less whose brand-new leather boots they just kicked to the drain, or that their kids dismounted the shower head in the change room and are spraying it all over the “dry” bench while their Captain America doll whirls about the swimsuit spinner battling evil water droplets. It’s a bloody free-for-all. The only thing worse than the change room experience is the pool itself — like we all volunteered to be ringside for a typhoon and are actually enjoying it.

The capper on this wet, miserable experience is the awkward sightings. You know what I’m talking about. There you are in your elastically challenged bikini, all those much-loathed body parts you left in the roundabout now front and center, like you actually became a giant thigh, there’s nothing else to you, just thigh and fat, and more fat. And in front of you is that hipster dad who you saw once or twice at school drop-off, sorta looks like Adam Levine and (not that it matters because you’re happily married) he’s damn cute and you’re definitely not because you’re naked and wet.

But wait, just wait, he’s no prince himself. Who knew he had a fur jacket? And what’s with those toes, are they webbed? He could work out a little more. Jeez, amazing what clothes hide. And it happened, that jolt from fleeting insecurity back to smug, as you head to the change room, giggling that you just saw Johnny’s dad (sorta) naked, and he’s not as cute as you and the rest of the moms thought he was. In fact, someone get that boy to the gym. Your thighs are suddenly glamour gams and, for all you care, your body is a ringer for Cameron Diaz.

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What’s my point? Why do parents lose all inhibition at the community pool and fall right back to our “chimpanic” roots (made that word up), picking fleas off our kids in the hot tub, strutting near-naked, scratching our privates… What is going on?

Whatever it is, there’s something healthy about literally/figuratively stripping away all protection and throwing in the towel (pun intended) amidst the chaos of the community pool. Maybe we should have our PTA (or PAC) meetings there, our Christmas concerts and bake sales. Bring on the skin, it will be the only time I see Johnny’s dad naked!

Read more of Shannon’s posts HERE.

And because no song seemed more fitting to go with this post, we’re treating you to a FREE download of “Show Us What You Got” from Lullaby Renditions of Jay Z. Yeah, we know you want to sing along, too.