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NURSERY TRENDS Local moms share their nursery designs TANTRUM SURVIVAL 7 tips to remember YOUR BODY AFTER BABY Changes you can expect SPECIAL NEEDS PLAYDATES Tips to help you plan

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BEST PRODUCTS FOR LITTLE ONES

a product of

Winter 20/21 | Vol. 19 | Issue 2


2 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


table of contents 12 BODY AFTER BABY

Your body will go through some major changes after birth, learn what you can expect.

14 WORKOUT ROUTINES FROM MOMMA STRONG

Momma Strong founder Courtney talks about her journey into fitness ands shares some exercises you can do for yourself or with your kids.

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18

ON THE COVER

NURSERY TRENDS Local moms share their nursery designs TANTRUM SURVIVAL 7 tips to remember YOUR BODY AFTER BABY Changes you can expect SPECIAL NEEDS PLAYDATES Tips to help you plan

photo by Miso Fotography misofoto.com

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BEST PRODUCTS FOR LITTLE ONES

16 SOOTHING SEPARATION ANXIETY

At some point your baby will feel the pains of separation anxiety. We've provided some tips to help you

18 7 THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN YOUR CHILD THROWS A TANTRUM Here's some tips to help avoid frustration and embarrassment when your child decides to have a massive tantrum meltdown.

20 NEW DIETARY GUIDELINES FOR 2021

Here is what you can expect on the nutrition front when it comes to making sure baby has the best food possible.

22 TIPS FOR PLAYDATES WITH SPECIAL NEEDS KIDS

Playdates are an important part of childhood, offering time for kids to interact socially. Here are tips on hosting a playdate with a special needs child.

24 5 TIPS FOR CHOOSING A PEDIATRICIAN

Choosing the right doctor for your child can be a daunting task, here are some tips to help you find one you can trust.

26 MATERNITY LEAVE REALITIES

How to prepare yourself and baby for going back to work. a product of

Winter 20/21 | Vol. 19 | Issue 2

IN EVERY ISSUE 4 SUPPORT LOCAL

6 NURSERY TRENDS

29 I AM HOUSTON

5 PUBLISHER'S NOTE

21 BOOK BITES

30 PRODUCT GUIDE

12 local Houston businesses with products and services worth your support.

Welcome to motherhood, we're so happy to have you along for the journey.

Local moms share their nursery designs and products to help you get the look.

Our favorite books to add to your child's library collection.

3 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

Meet local mom Mushie Feigenson, founder of Mushie & Co baby products.

We've selected the best in must-have products for you and baby.


PU B LIS H ER ’S NOTE

publisher/editor

Kimberly Davis Guerra kim@houstonfamilymagazine.com

WELCOME TO MOTHERHOOD,

associate editor

Chantal Lemieux chantal@houstonfamilymagazine.com

creative director/ production

WE’RE SO HAPPY TO HAVE YOU ALONG FOR THE JOURNEY.

Casey Johnson casey@houstonfamilymagazine.com

contributing authors Kimberly Blaker Christa Melnyk Hines Casey Johnson Sarah Lyons Christina J. Valentine MD Courtney Wyckoff

contributing photographers

Ashleigh Handzik Photography Charli Jones Photography MISO Fotography Ruth & Rene Photography Summer Days Photography Yvette Michelle Photography

advertising sales Beverly Davis Tish Petty

printing

Publication Printers Denver, Colorado

ABOVE// Kim enjoying time with her first grandbaby.

FIND US ONLINE Did you know we launched a new website this year? Check it out at houstonbabymagazine.com. FIND US ON FACEBOOK @HoustonBabyMagazine FOLLOW US ON INSTAGRAM @houstonbabymag

contact us:

14123 Bluebird Lane Houston, TX 77079 (P) 713.266.1885 (F) 713.266.1915 www.HoustonFamilyMagazine.com

CONTACT US Let us know how we’re doing. kim@houstonfamilymagazine.com

I

n this crazy year, one of the shining moments for families has been the addition of little ones to their families. No matter what is going on, the birth of a child is always a gloriously happy occasion. I know for our family it has definitely been the silver lining to a pretty rough year. In May of this year, in the height of the pandemic, my only sister and brother-in-law welcomed their first child, a baby girl. It was especially scary since she is located in NY and this was at the height of the outbreaks. Luckily everything went seamlessly and my new niece is a glorious joy! (Even though I have not been able to meet her yet!) Around Memorial Day, one of our staff welcomed their third baby, a beautiful bouncing baby boy! And, then in July, my daughter and son-in-law welcomed their first baby, also a beautiful baby girl. Luckily, they are much closer, in Austin, so I was able to meet my first grand baby!! During such tumultuous times, it is human nature to cling to our family, our ‘village’ and community. At such times, it is especially important for us to reach out and seek help when needed. Offer help when and where we can and try to be the example we want to see in the world. It is with this intent that we continue to put out this magazine. The content contained within is from local families, businesses and experts. Do your best to support them, if you are able. It means more and more these days. We look toward a new year with tremendous anticipation for better days to come in 2021. However, if the days are still bumpy, we will have those shining faces to look upon and know that they are our future. We will do our best to inspire, educate and support you in any way we can. We congratulate you on your new expanding families! We wish you love & light, health & happiness.

Kimberly Davis Guerra Houston Baby Magazine is published quarterly by Houston Family Magazine, LLC. Houston Babyis distributed free of charge, one copy per reader. Only Houston Baby authorized distributors may deliver or pick up the magazines. We reserve the right to edit, reject or comment editorially on all submitted material. We cannot be responsible for the return of any submitted material. Houston Family is ©2020 by Houston Family Magazine,LLC. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part without express permission is prohibited.

Check out our Cover Photographer, MISO Fotography | www.misofoto.com

4 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


Miso Fotography MISOFOTO.COM

Momma Strong

MOMMASTRONG.COM

Mushie MUSHIE.COM

Holly Young Photography

HOLLYYOUNGPHOTOGRAPHY.COM

SUPPORT LOCAL BUSINESSES Blue Willow Bookshop

BLUEWILLOWBOOKSHOP.COM

Meet (12) local Houston businesses. Some are entrepreneurs. Some are single moms. Some have been around for over 100 years. They are all very different.

Traci Ling Photography WWW.TRACILING.COM

What they all have in common is that they are part of our community. Your support & patronage is vital to their success. Throughout the month of December, you will hear their stories through our daily E-newsletters, Eblasts, social media and website. Be sure to follow them and show them your love & support.

Northwestern Mutual

NORTHWESTERNMUTUAL.COM

Jenna Duncan Photography

JENNADUNCAN.PHOTOGRAPHY

Find out their stories online at www.houstonfamilymagazine.com/supportlocal

WEBSITE

WEBSITE

Ashley Moore

Relics of Rainbows Photo

MOOREHOUSEINTERIORS.COM

RORPHOTO.COM

5 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

Diya - Anita Bangale ANITABANGALE.COM

Sweet & Sudsy SWEETANDSUDSY.COM


NURSERY TRENDS get inspired

written by Casey Johnson

Designing the baby’s nursery can be an exciting time for expecting mothers. With so many different ideas, themes and styles available it can also be overwhelming to know where to start. Today’s room designs are often created with the child’s growth in mind. Many families opt to design a room that will take them well past the toddler years and into pre-school and beyond. We teamed up with some local Houston moms to share their nursery designs with you in hopes to inspire and spark your own creativity during your nesting phase.

Ashleigh was able to find the furniture pieces on Facebook Market Place and refinished them with Annie Slone Chalk Paint! Your creativitiy is the the limit. NURSERY DESIGN: ASHLEIGH HANDZIK, HOUSTON, TEXAS PHOTOGRAPHER: ASHLEIGH HANDZIK PHOTOGRAPHY 6 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

HAND PAINT YOUR OWN WOODLAND PRINTS OR FIND SOME ONLINE AT

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BOY OR GIRL

into the s wood BEAUDRY MIRROR

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www.ballarddesigns.com WALL HANGING SMALL STORAGE BASKETS

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www.amazon.com WILHELMINA HAND BRAIDED AREA RUG

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www.wayfair.com SILVERHÖJDEN GOLD FRAMES

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www.ikea.com BABY CHANGING TABLE BASKET BY DESIGN DUA

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www.designdua.com WOODLAND WALLPAPER BY BABYMAESSHOP

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www.target.com ANTELOPE PILLOW COVER BY CHLOE AND OLIVE PILLOWS

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Note: Not all products shown are currently available. We have found similar items to help with your search in creating the same look and feel. NURSERY DESIGN: EMILY CALLIHAN, HOUSTON, TEXAS PHOTOGRAPHER: SUMMER DAYS PHOTOGRAPHY 8 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


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l a t s coa es vib MARCELLE CANE PANEL CRIB $1349.00 www.rhbabyandchild.com

POM-POM PERFORMANCE HANDWOVEN FLATWEAVE RUG $599-$1399 www.rhbabyandchild.com MACRAME FRINGE CRIB SKIRT $49.00 www.rhbabyandchild.com KEMP PILLOW COVER

$158-$198

www.serenaandlily.com CHARLESTON SWIVEL GLIDER & RECLINER

$1099.00

www.potterybarnkids.com STELLA SIDE TABLE

$199.00

www.potterybarnkids.com AFRICAN LAUNDRY BASKETS

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www.modecorarts.com SUMITRA 6 DRAWER DOUBLE DRESSER

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www.wayfair.com 60” CHELSEA CONE SHADE FLOOR LAMP

$122.99

www.target.com ORDER YOUR CUSTOM WIRE WORDING ONLINE WWW.ETSY.COM

IMPERATIVE DÉCOR FLOATING SHELVES (SET OF 2)

$49.97

www.amazon.com OLIVAREZ WALL MIRROR

$173.99

www.wayfair.com 9 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


Note: Not all products shown are currently available. We have found similar items to help with your search in creating the same look and feel. NURSERY DESIGN: MARY MORGAN, TOMBALL, TEXAS PHOTOGRAPHER: CHARLI JONES PHOTOGRAPHY 10 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


LITTLE GIRL

y t t e r p in pink JOY CANOPY CRIB IN VINTAGE GOLD $839.00 www.brattdecor.com MARFA CRIB SHEETS $75.00 www.biscuit-home.com CUSTOM TASSEL GARLAND BY SANDHCRAFTHOUSE $36.00+ www.etsy.com ANNABELLE PINK & OFF WHITE DESIGNER STRIPED CURTAINS $75.99 www.halfpricedrapes.com FLOWER CHILD HANDTUFTED AREA RUG $239.99 www.wayfair.com PLUSH GIRAFFE BY MELISSA & DOUG $99.99 www.melissaanddoug.com MUSICAL HORSE NURSERY ROCKER $199.00 www.potterybarnkids.com PLUSH FLAMINGO BY MELISSA & DOUG $99.99 www.melissaanddoug.com TULLSTA ARMCHAIR $149.00 www.ikea.com KNITTED CACTUS CUSHION $50.00 www.biscuit-home.com WUBBANUB PACIFER

$14.99

www.wubbanubonline.com 11 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


b

Photographer: Ruth & Rene Photography www.ruthrenephoto.com Instagram @ruthandrenephotography 12 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


b

y b a b r e t f a ody what to expect

written by Sarah Lyons | photo by Ruth & Rene Photography

Having a baby is an exciting time, one you have been preparing nine months for. In anticipation of your baby’s arrival you most likely did research on everything from pregnancy health to car seat safety, but many women find themselves unprepared for the changes in their bodies after birth. Here is a rundown of what to expect.

BREAST TENDERNESS After birth, your breasts will become full and tender as your body prepares to feed the baby. Your breastmilk may not come in until day three or four postpartum but shortly after birth your body will begin producing colostrum, a special type of breastmilk, rich in nutrients and antibodies that are important for a newborn baby. Colostrum will help build your baby’s immune system. If you plan to breastfeed, work with a lactation consultant to make sure the baby is latching properly. This will help your mature milk come in and prevent sore cracked nipples.

CRAMPING AND BLEEDING You may have thought that once the baby was born, you were done with contractions, but you will continue to experience cramps or after pains while your uterus constricts and begins to return to it’s normal size. These cramps are most often felt

during breastfeeding. After giving birth, moms will also experience vaginal bleeding which can be heavier than a normal period and last up to two weeks. It is also normal to have spotting for up to four to six weeks postpartum. If you feel that there is excessive bleeding and clotting, contact your doctor.

SORENESS Giving birth is hard work and it is normal to have both muscle achiness and vaginal soreness. If you had a c-section you are also recovering from major abdominal surgery. Take it easy, use pain medication as needed, ask for help, and try not to overdo it. Give your body time to return to normal and practice good self-care.

BATHROOM ISSUES It isn’t fun to talk about but it is a fact. We all have to go to the bathroom and something that was simple before can become a big obstacle postpartum. Moms who had a vaginal

birth may have a hard time pushing or straining to go to the bathroom, especially if they developed hemorrhoids during birth. Major surgery will also cause constipation, therefore moms who have a c-section can find using the restroom very challenging as well. Staying hydrated, eating high fiber foods, and taking an occasional walk can help with constipation. Some doctors may also recommend a stool softener.

MOOD SWINGS Having a baby is one of the happiest moments of your life, so why can’t you stop crying? Your body is going through all kinds of hormonal changes postpartum and you are most likely exhausted from giving birth, feeding your baby every few hours, and adjusting to the demands of caring for a newborn, all on top of recovering from childbirth. It makes sense that you may be a little teary. Give yourself some grace, rest when possible, and try to focus on the great things

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going on in your life. If you have feelings of hopelessness, want to harm yourself or baby, or the feelings of sadness are overwhelming, speak to a doctor about your feelings. Postpartum depression is a real, and common, challenge for new moms and there is nothing wrong with seeking help when needed. You have been through some big changes in a short time and your body will need time to recover. Most moms will lose 10-12 pounds immediately after giving birth but still have a swollen rounded belly for a few weeks. It can take months to return to your pre-pregnancy weight and weeks to feel like you can return to your normal activities. While you are recovering, give yourself the rest and proper self-care you deserve. Enjoy your new addition to the family and acknowledge the amazing things your body can do. Sarah Lyons is a mother of six children, including 2-year-old triplets.


Workout Routines from

MommaStrong written by Courtney Wyckoff

There’s no “one way” to get strong. There’s no “right way” to be fit. But, there is a choice in how you will live in your own unique body.

I

can’t say I know a lot in many areas of life, but I can say that I am an expert in one area: How to exercise every day as a parent, come rain or shine or boogers or bad moods … or pandemics. As the founder of MommaStrong. com and PappaStrong. com, I have spent the last 8 years filming new 15 minute workouts every single day. And my life is not perfect. I am a single mom with three kids, ages 14, 9, and 18 months and I work full time in a business that is still in start-up status. I made a decision a long time ago that, as a fitness trainer, I would show up in my raw and gritty life without apology and that no matter what sort of success or cushion came my way, I would still install daily exercise the way all of my members do. I also made a commitment to finding a way to make the least amount of exercise be “exactly enough” exercise, rather than deliver false promises that required more time and energy than most parents can muster. By doing this, my company has

become a leader in at-home functional training that helps parents show up in their messy lives with less pain and with more resiliency. Beyond all this, though, I have to admit that the greater reward has been learning from other parents that exercise is not about making ourselves better or by sculpting our bodies into shiny objects. Instead, it is about connecting to ourselves in small ways every day, mentally and physically, so that we can connect to our children in big ways every day. So, it doesn’t matter if you do the exercise part perfectly, it just simply matters that you do what you can in the way that you can, as often as you can. Your strength matters and I’m here to meet you where you are. I’ve compiled four different workouts based on four different scenarios that you might experience … maybe all in one day if you are like me! Along with these workouts, I’ve laid out my basic tips and tricks to help you show up in the middle of “it”.

over stimulating and even when tiny humans are climbing all over you.

WORKING OUT WITH SMALL CHILDREN Exercising with babies and toddlers is probably one of the hardest tasks parents face. In fact, it is so hard that most parents try it once and then never ever again. They say, like I have said, “Nevermind” and then they decide to wait until they have more time and autonomy to get a decent hands-free workout in. The problem with this is, however, that if we wait for a good time, it might be years or even decades before that happens. It is better to learn how to fit in a bit of movement every day even when it’s inconvenient and

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Here are my three tips for exercising during this time: • Go with their flow: I have found that if I go with their mood or energy level, rather than resist it by trying to get them to be calm and wellbehaved, then things go much better. Beyond that, I don’t end up feeling resentful, which is the worst feeling as a parent. We end up being playful instead, which makes me feel better and definitely makes my tot feel better. I have actually found that the more I meet them where they are, the better behaved they are and the less they seek my attention. So, join them. Get a stack of paper airplanes by your mat or double dog dare them to jump on your back like a cowboy/girl every time you do a plank. Trust me, it works … most of the time.


• Be equipped: Right before a workout, I walk around the house with a box and I pick safe, but often unreachable objects for my little kids. In the video I filmed for you, you will see my toddler using sanitary pads as stickers and an unused teeth whitening tray as a toy. Let’s face it, a magical box of surprises that you don’t have to spend money on is pretty close to a babysitter for 15 minutes. • Challenge your expectations: As much as you might really hate this advice, it is so important for your sanity and your strength. I have found that I need to become willing to unravel my expectations for every workout, meaning that I have reset what is actually feasible to achieve given my reality that day. This means that the workout won’t be perfect, that it won’t be life changing, but it will be accomplished. And that is all you need today, which actually makes it easier and more motivating to show up tomorrow.

WORKING OUT WHEN YOU HAVE TIME AND SPACE, BUT YOU DON’T WANT TO Almost harder than finding time to workout with kids around and on you, is getting yourself on the mat to workout when you have free time and freedom. Let’s be honest … it is very tempting to drain your brain instead and, well, you probably totally deserve

that any time you can get it. However, I have learned that getting a little bit of exercise in during free time becomes something that makes every part of my day better. Here’s my advice for this scenario: • Be grumpy and funny, “Grunny”: I have learned over the years that very few people are actually excited to workout. It’s a lie we’ve been sold by a fitness industry that shows us instructors who are bouncing around ready to go. In fact, I used to have a ton of shame around the fact that 99.99% of the time, I do not want to workout. And then I realized that my experience is actually far more true for most people. So, instead of beating myself up, I started owning my grumpiness through laughter and humor. I got “grunny” and got on to the mat anyways. • Nurture your Boss Voice: Most people (including myself) end up procrastinating a workout longer than the time it would take to actually do the workout. My way through this has been to cultivate my inner boss voice, which parents me into the “to do” with grace, love, and leadership. My experience has been that once I just get it over with, I am always - 100% of the time happy that I did. Aka, Mom is always right. • Challenge expectations: Just as working out with kids requires an acceptance of imperfection, so does working out when you have all the time and space. In fact, it is highly likely that when you do have time and space, you may place even more unrealistic goals on yourself to get a life-changing workout in and do your very best. I encourage you not to do that and instead expect yourself to be

human. The truth is that motivation grows from accomplishment and not from being a superhero. I repeat: Just do enough as often as you can in whatever way you can. And then make sure to leave enough time for Netflix.

CHECK OUT THE MAMMASTRONG WORKOUT VIDEOS! Simply scan the qr codes or visit: www.youtube.com/ playlist?list=PLPDR9tEFO48hM5N_bq1_KpaJEWgtPlC57

WANT EVEN MORE INFO? www.mommastrong.com www.pappastrong.com

WORKING OUT WITH SCHOOLAGED CHILDREN Kids around the age of 5-11 want one thing: Connection. This can be a very hard thing to provide though when we are home all day, trying to do our daily tasks while helping them survive schooling online or wherever they may be. I don’t know about you, but some days I feel like every time they ask for help or call my name, it is like sandpaper on my skin. This is not because you are being a bad parent, but rather because you are overstimulated to the max. My advice here is simple: Exercise with them for just ten minutes. You get a release, they get connection. Win Win.

WORKING OUT WITH TEENAGERS One of the most important take-aways from having a teenager has been to not take anything personally and to get

15 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

out of her/his/their way. Very seldom does my teen want to workout with me, which is a bummer because this is an age where I am the one who wants the connection. But, probing for that or forcing it only leads to more distance, at least in my experience. Instead, I have learned that giving them autonomy and helping them feel that the healthy choice is their idea is the best way forward. My advice here is also simple: Give them access to a workout that meets them where they are and then walk away. Let them do it on their own. You may never know that they did it, but you’ll be surprised one day when you hear them tell their friends about their new workout routine they love.

TAKE-AWAYS I’ll end this by reminding you that you are doing a great job and also by encouraging you to be rebelliously strong with me. You don’t need to do more than you can do, but it is absolutely worth it to show up for your crazy day instead of shut down. These are not easy times we all face and I would be negligent in not emphasizing that exercise is a reliable, available, and lifegiving tool for each of us that can positively shift our brains and our bodies in mere minutes. Grab onto it on your terms and give yourself some grace along the way.


Soothing

Separation Anxiety written by Sarah Lyons

It is normal for your child to feel nervous when it’s time to stay with a caregiver. Separation can be difficult for both the child and the parent, but children can begin to feel comfortable and separation anxiety will improve with these strategies.

PREPARE Before it’s time to leave the child, discuss what will happen. Let him know you will leave him with a babysitter, what you will be doing while you are gone, and assure him you will be back. If possible, plan something fun the child and the caregiver can do together. If a child knows what to expect, they have the opportunity to ask questions and ease some of the apprehension they may feel.

PRACTICE Young children, especially infants, benefit from easing into a new routine. Try leaving the child for short periods of time before going back to work full time. By slowly increasing the length of time, the child will be able to develop a relationship with their caregiver and adjust to being away from the parent.

BE CONSISTENT Do your best to use the same caregiver each time you leave so that the child feels more

comfortable. Your child will spend a lot of time with the babysitter, especially if the parents work full time outside the home, and it is important that children feel safe and comfortable with them.

CHOOSE THE BEST TIME A child who is sick, hungry, or tired is more likely to struggle with separation anxiety. Make sure she is fed and rested before it is time for you to leave.

KEEP IT FAMILIAR If possible, have the caregiver come to your home where your child feels most comfortable. If that is not possible, have the child bring something from home that makes him feel comfortable such as a special stuffed animal or blanket, a photo of the family, or a favorite toy. Another idea is to have the caregiver bring a special toy along with her that the child will recognize and associate with her each time, helping to create consistency and comfort for the child.

SET A TIME LIMIT When it is time to leave, give your child a time you will return. Toddlers do not understand the concept of time, but you can let them know they can expect you after a specific activity. Explain that you will be home after lunch, when naptime is done, or when the movie is over (let the caregiver know when to start the movie). This will help the child understand what time you will be home and relax when you to leave.

LEAVE QUICKLY When it is time to go, even if it is as hard for you as it is for the child, leave without fanfare. Say goodbye, give one last kiss or hug, remind them you will be back soon and leave. Quickly! Of all the tips this is probably the simplest and the most important. Your child is looking to you for how to react to the situation and if you are calm, happy, and confident, they will begin to feel that way too.

16 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

DEVELOP A GOODBYE RITUAL Developing a special goodbye with your child creates consistency and it is also fun. A goodbye ritual is when you and your child say goodbye the exact same way each day. This routine can make the child feel comfortable when you leave and confident you will return. Separation anxiety is age appropriate for children from infancy to around 3 years old. These coping strategies can help both you and your child feel at ease when it is time to leave him with a caregiver. In time, children do outgrow their anxiety over separation. Most parents will tell you that one day they are surprised to find their child happily walks into school without shedding a tear, while they themselves still tear up a little. Sarah Lyons is a mother of six children, including 2-year-old triplets. She will try some of these tips as her triplets head off to Mother’s Day Out this year.


GOODBYE RITUALS Creating a goodbye ritual with your child can help give them a sense of comfort because they know what to expect. They will feel safe in their surroundings and have confidence their parent will return, as always. Here are some ideas to start your own goodbye ritual. • Read a book together then leave • Draw a picture together then leave the picture with the child • Have the child wave at the window • Give one last kiss and one last hug • Create a special wave or handshake • Sing a goodbye song • Give her kisses to keep in her pocket for later and ask for some for your pocket

Photographer: Yvette Michelle Photography ymportraits.com Instagram @yvettemichelleportraits 17 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


Photographer: MISO Fotography https://misofoto.com Instagram @misofoto 18 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


YOU ARE NOT ALONE

7 THINGS TO REMEMBER WHEN YOUR CHILD THROWS A

Tantrum written by Sarah Lyons | photo by MISO Fotography

When your child throws a tantrum, it is easy to get frustrated, overwhelmed, angry, and embarrassed, especially if the tantrum occurs in public. Unfortunately, the occasional tantrum cannot be avoided. They happen to every parent but while your child is in the throes of a fit, try to remember these tips.

IT IS NORMAL

LEAVE THE SCENE

The first thing to remember when your child has a tantrum is that it is normal. Tantrums are a normal way for kids to express their frustration when they may not be able to communicate their feelings appropriately. While this fact doesn’t make the tantrum any easier to deal with, it does help to know that, developmentally, this is a normal stage.

When the child starts to throw a tantrum, make sure they are safe, and then leave the area. Typically, if the child doesn’t have an audience to get a reaction from, the tantrum will cease. If you are not comfortable leaving the child alone, get busy doing other things and pretend to ignore them. If the tantrum happens in public, take the child to the car or the bathroom to calm down. If the tantrum continues and the child is unable to calm down, buckle them safely in their car seat and drive home.

DO NOT ENGAGE During a tantrum the temptation can be to lecture, yell, or reason with the child. They cannot hear you or comprehend reason when they are in the middle of a tantrum. The best thing to do is to wait it out. If you do feel the need to discuss the situation with the child, wait until later when he or she is calm and ready to listen.

CONSIDER TRIGGERS Think about what triggered your child to get so upset in the first place. How can frustrating situations be avoided in the future? Of course, not all tantrums can be avoided but certain triggers can be

removed. When armed with this information parents can be prepared to use distraction to lessen or avoid a future tantrum.

DON’T GIVE IN, EXCEPT ONCE IN AWHILE Giving into a tantrum will do nothing but encourage future tantrums. If your child is throwing a tantrum because he wants to eat a cookie before dinner, do not give him the cookie. It is also not a good idea to use bribes to stop a tantrum. “If you stop crying, I will buy you a toy.” rewards the child for the tantrum. However, if your child is in the middle of a tantrum and listening to the same annoying song over and over again on the car ride home will help him calm down, this may be an exception you can live with.

19 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

Although it might feel like you are alone while your child has a fit at the grocery store, we have all been there. It is likely your child will have a tantrum in public at some point and it will be embarrassing and inconvenient, but it is generally unavoidable. Remind yourself again that it is normal for kids to have tantrums, leave the store if needed, and try to laugh about it later.

USE DISTRACTION, HUMOR, AND HUGS During a tantrum, kids are not able to listen to reason but that doesn’t mean parents can’t try to wrap up the crying quickly. Try using a distraction like “Where is the ball?” or “Do you want to read a book?”. Make a silly face to lighten the mood or turn on some music and begin a silly dance. For some kids a tight hug helps them to calm down when they are upset. Trying to help your child move past the tantrum can teach them methods for calming themselves down in the future. The situation that caused the tantrum can be discussed later if needed.

DON’T DOUBT YOURSELF There was a day when I had dealt with a particular horrible tantrum from my daughter and I began to blame myself. “What am I doing wrong? I am a terrible mom.” After expressing these things to a friend, she reminded me that I am not a bad mother, I am just having a bad day. It happens to all of us. Remain confident in your parenting and remind yourself you are doing the best you can. Tantrums happen to all parents. The next time your child has a terrible tantrum, try to stop and remember these tips. Ultimately the tantrum will end, and your child will grow and learn to communicate more effectively. Sarah Lyons is a Midwestern wife and mother of six children, including two-year-old triplets.


A

s parents, we’re all working to ensure our children are happy and healthy. A big part of making sure our little ones are healthy is to focus on their diet and nutritional intake. With just a couple of months until the new year, we have some insights from a recent Scientific Report from the USDA and the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) as they develop the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines. These guidelines include the first-ever dietary recommendations for infants from birth through 24 months. This heavy emphasis on early life nutrition is one of the biggest changes we are seeing with this iteration. Research shows the first 1,000 days are important in a child’s life and it’s the most active period of neurological development. Poor nutrition during this period could have lasting impacts through adulthood. So it is important that parents provide a nourishing diet and a nurturing environment to support healthy brain development. Guidance surrounding added sugar is a key statement and the recommendation is to decrease from 10% to 6% of our calories per day for adults and children 2 years and older. One of the best ways you can help your child do this is to offer options with limited or no added sugar and with a higher nutritional value. Try blending a cool, fruit smoothie and add bananas for potassium and a dairy source for calcium and vitamin D or offer up a bowl of fresh blueberries. Another option is baking together fresh muffins or small pancake snacks with almond butter or peanut butter. For toddlers 12-24 months, the guidelines emphasize potassium-rich fruits and vegetables, prioritizing seafood, offering whole grains, and opting for oils rather than solid fats. Toddlers often are not consuming foods high in important nutrients like iron, DHA (Docosahexaenoic Acid), vitamin D, calcium,

The New Dietary Guidelines for 2021

What It Means For Your Child written by Christina J. Valentine MD, MS, RD Medical Director at RB, Nutrition

and potassium and this can lead to nutrient gaps. In fact, a substantial number of infants and children in the United States ages 0 - 5 have inadequate intakes of key nutrients like calcium, vitamin D, and vitamin E from foods. Toddlers also only get about 25% of the recommended amount of DHA, and data suggests that approximately 1.5 million children between the ages of 1 and 5 may be at

risk for iron deficiency. Cooked butternut squash, sweet potatoes and carrots are good sources of potassium, and black beans and garbanzo beans are good iron sources. Cutting these foods into bitesize portions or gently baking, sautéing, or steaming can make them more appealing to toddlers. Present a variety of foods in vibrant colors. Red peppers, plain yogurt, blueberries,

20 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

and salmon are some good examples. Also, choose small amounts of carbohydrate with a protein (lean meat, cheese, yogurt, egg, or something with color). These foods can help incorporate more iron, calcium, and vitamin D into your toddler’s diet. Unfortunately, many parents will find that their toddlers are selective eaters and getting them to eat foods that are rich in vitamins and nutrients is often easier said than done. For those that have a limited palate, you may want to think about incorporating a toddler nutritional drink like Enfagrow®, which has brainbuilding DHA, iron, vitamins, and prebiotics, to help fill in some of those nutritional gaps. Another tip is to try to mix some of the foods that your toddler already likes with foods that might be new to them. By doing this, they will be more inclined to try something new. Getting the kids involved can also be a great way to get them to eat nutritious foods. Grocery shop together online or in the store! Give them important tasks as you’re getting ready for meals and preparing snacks, for example ask them to help you break up fruits and vegetables and appoint them the designated fruit and vegetable washer. It’s a great way to get them excited about eating nutritious options. When it comes to meal prep, I am also a big proponent of making one meal for the whole family rather than preparing several different meals. Salmon with sweet potatoes are great lunchtime or dinner options packed with vitamins and nutrients and the texture is also great for babies and toddlers. Bake salmon fish sticks, which makes for a delicious finger food for your little ones or make salmon cakes that can be dipped in yogurt and tastes great - using colorful plates and smaller portions also helps. The most important thing to remember is that instilling healthy habits now is the foundation for healthy habits later. You’ve got this!


BOOK BITES

HERE ARE OUR PICKS FOR MUST HAVE BOOKS FOR BABY AND TODDLER

Llama Llama Loose Tooth Drama by Anna Dewdney

Llama Llama loses his loose tooth in this new hardcover adventure, part of Anna Dewdney’s New York Times bestselling series! $15.42 • www.amazon.com

You’re My Little Baby by Eric Carle

From beloved author-illustrator Eric Carle comes this brand-new interactive board book that features sweet text about baby love and touch-and-feel elements throughout! $7.99 • www.amazon.com

Moo Moo, I Love You by Amy Krouse Rosenthal

From the bestselling and beloved team behind I Wish You More, comes a moo-ving ode to the love between parent and child.

Family Lifestyle Photography

families · babies · Children · couples · love www.rorphoto.com // RELICS.OF.RAINBOWS

$9.49 • www.amazon.com

Will You Be My Friend? by Sam McBratney

From legendary author and illustrator duo Sam McBratney and Anita Jeram comes the delightful sequel to the heartwarming picture book classic Guess How Much I Love You. $12.58 • www.amazon.com

If Animals Kissed Good Night by Ann Whitford Paul

What if animals did what YOU do? This bestselling story imagines how animals would kiss their loved ones good night! $4.79 • www.amazon.com

The Office: A Day at Dunder Mifflin Elementary by Rob Pearlman

Discover “The Office reboot fans never knew they needed” with this kid-friendly adaptation of everyone’s favorite workplace comedy $11.51 • www.amazon.com 21 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


Playdates are an important part of childhood.

T

hey offer time for kids to interact socially without the structure of school or extracurricular activities. They also help kids learn to share, socialize, and play freely while still having support from their parents as needed. Kids with special needs are no exception and benefit from playdates as much as their peers. While they may take a little more planning and patience, it is well worth the efforts for everyone involved. Here are some tips for hosting a playdate with kids with disabilities.

➊ BE OPEN

Tips for Playdates with

Special Needs Kids written by Sarah Lyons

22 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

Our natural reaction may be to avoid talking about any disabilities a child may have but it is better to address any questions or concerns beforehand so everyone is more comfortable and knows what to expect. “I am upfront and honest about my daughter before we go to anyone’s house for a playdate.” says Barb Walker-Shapiro, mom of six from Omaha, NE. “Her brain doesn’t work like other kids. She may have a seizure and is prone to major meltdowns. I find that when other parents know what’s ‘wrong’ with my daughter, they are more tolerant and compassionate towards her.” It is also a good idea to talk to your children openly about differences they may have with their friends. Explain that just because others may seem different or express their joy differently, it doesn’t mean they don’t enjoy playdates or making new friends as well. Prior to


the playdate, it is also a good idea to check in with the other parents about whether there are any food allergies or restrictions and anything important you should know.

➋ BE STRATEGIC Prior to the playdate, discuss with the other parents about what would be the best location to have the playdate. For some, their own home is more comfortable and successful. For others, staying at home may encourage the special needs child to say hello then retreat to their room while company visits. In this case, it may be better to go to a public place that everyone can enjoy, such as a park, museum, or zoo. On the other hand, parents who have a child that is prone to running away or hiding may find a public place overwhelming. Discuss your plans with all the parents involved and come up with the best solution for everyone. Another great strategy is to plan activities that unite the kids. Kids who struggle with talking to peers or sharing toys may find that a common interest helps them feel more at ease. Find out the interests of the kids you are hosting and offer an activity around one that excites all of those invited. Ideas could include a craft, a game, or visiting somewhere that fosters that interest. For example, if they are interested in nature, visit the Overland Park Arboretum or go on a backyard scavenger hunt. If they are interested in tractors and farm animals, visit a farm, such as Deanna Rose.

➌ BE PATIENT Whenever kids are involved, patience is important. Try to understand that kids may have different reactions to situations, things may not go exactly

“When hosting a playdate with kids with disabilities it’s important to greet them and interact with them as you would anyone else you meet.” as expected, and that it may take some time for kids with special needs to warm up to the situation. Some children with special needs may prefer to participate in parallel play. Parallel play is when kids play beside each other, but do not interact with one another. Children who play alone during parallel play still enjoy the time together and are usually interested in what the other children are doing. If things do not go as planned, it is okay to cut the playdate short and try again in the future.

➍ BE INCLUSIVE It is most important to note that kids with disabilities or special needs are just like anyone else; they want to interact with friends and be loved and appreciated. When hosting a playdate with kids with disabilities it’s important to greet them and interact with them as you would anyone else you meet. “Please say hi to my son. Smile at him, even if he doesn’t smile back.” says Marie Taylor, Olathe, KS mother of two. Even if the child is nonverbal or doesn’t seem to hear you, it is important to speak to them. Angela

Leever, special education teacher and mother of three says “Encourage the parents and children to speak to the child with special needs, not about them. If the child with special needs does something your child isn’t happy with or that isn’t appropriate, allow them to use words to tell them. Sometimes that is more powerful than the adults intervening.”

➎ BE UNDERSTANDING Parenting is not easy, and we all struggle with different challenges when it comes to our children. Ask the parent if they need help with anything prior to the playdate. “I almost always have a few extra things to carry so please don’t be shy about asking if I need help.” says Taylor. “I also need a lot of grace.” Try to be patient and understanding. The other parent may be overwhelmed or tired. It may have been challenging to get there. All parents have great days where everything goes as planned and tough days where it seems nothing does. Listen and offer a hand when needed and they will most likely offer the same in return. The most important tip for having a playdate with a special needs child is just to have them. It may take a little more planning and patience than the average playdate, but it is so worth it to both the parents and kids involved. Playdates offer a great chance for kids to interact with peers and make friends in a non-stressful way, and they are also a great time for parents to connect and build each other up as well. Sarah Lyons is a mother of six children, including 2-year-old triplets.

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Playdate Activities That Unite

Choosing activities that encourage common interests will help foster friendships. Here are some ideas:

➜ B uild something - Legos,

blocks, wooden train sets

➜ P ick something they are

both interested in and go do it

Arts and crafts

Go outside and play

➜ Q  uiet stations for the

quieter group - set up puzzles, coloring sheets, books, blocks

Set up a sensory bin

➜ P ick a neutral location museum, park, or zoo


5

Tips for Choosing a Pediatrician written by Sarah Lyons

After your baby is born, you will visit the pediatrician often. In the first year, your baby will have seven well visits. Studies show that first time parents may visit their child’s pediatrician up to sixteen times before baby’s first birthday. (www.fitpregnancy.com)

Y

our child’s doctor plays an important role in their life and, therefore, you will need to find one that is a good fit for the parents and the child. It can be a challenging to find a pediatrician that is right for your family. Here are some tips to get you started on your search:

1

START WITH RECOMMENDATIONS As a first-time parent, or a family that has just relocated, it is hard to know where to begin your search for a pediatrician. “I asked other moms for recommendations. It’s a great way to see what names came up repeatedly.” says Cedar Rapids, Iowa mom, Jill Miller. Stacy Cook, nurse and mom of three suggests asking your OB GYN for a recommendation. “I figured if they were good enough for my doctor’s kids

then they were good enough for mine.” Some parents, like Nathan and Wendy Hladky of Overland Park, KS, chose the same primary care doctor for the whole family. “All four of us use the same doctor. It is super convenient.” says Nathan. Another great way to narrow your search in a new area is to call the local NICU and ask the nurses who they would recommend. “The nurses are more likely to give unbiased feedback.” says Rodganna Avery, mom of three.

2

COVER THE BASICS First you must compare your list of candidates with your insurance policy. “I look to see what providers are in our network then start looking for reviews of those doctors online. I was able to find a doctor that was better than we ever expected.” says Stephanie

Beaurdry, Texas mom of two. Check if the doctor is certified by the American Board of Pediatrics. This means the doctor has passed a specialized test in pediatrics. If you choose a family doctor, ask if the doctor is certified in the American Board of Family Medicine. Family doctors are trained to treat patients of all ages, including children, but they do not have a specialty in pediatrics. Next consider the basic office information that can be found online or with a quick phone call. What are the office hours? Do they have walk in hours? Will the doctor visit the hospital where you will deliver your baby? What hospital will your child be admitted to if needed? Is the office location convenient to your home, work, school, and daycare? Take these things into consideration as you narrow down your list.

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3

VISIT THE OFFICE To find out if you feel comfortable in the pediatrician’s office, you will have to take a tour. Call the office and ask if they have times set up for potential patients to come and visit the office or if you would need to make an appointment and ask if you can interview the doctor at the same time. Remember to ask if there is a charge for visiting. Verify with your insurance company to see if the cost would be covered or if you would be responsible for the fees. When visiting the office be aware of what the overall environment feels like. Take into consideration if the office staff is courteous, polite, and willing to help. Is the office clean and inviting? Was parking convenient? Do they have separate sick and well waiting areas? Take all of these


WHEN IS IT TIME TO FIND A NEW PEDIATRICIAN? • If your child cries the whole time, that alone, is not cause to switch. However, if the doctor doesn’t seem to care or make an effort to soothe your child, you may have a problem.

things into consideration in your decision. If you plan to visit more than one office, be sure to take notes for later consideration.

4

ASK SOME QUESTIONS After you have decided that the office environment is a good fit, you will need to interview the pediatrician. Pharmacists, Darcy and Phil King said “After collecting recommendations, I scoured their websites, set up appointments and interviewed them. After the visits, it was very clear which was a good fit.” Start by asking how sick appointments work. How long would it take for a sick child to be seen? Is there a good chance the child will be seen by his own doctor? Do you have similar views on health and wellness such as circumcision, breastfeeding,

and immunizations? It is also important to consider what your preferences are. “Do you want a doctor who offers choices and lets you decide which one works best for you? Or would you be more comfortable with one who gives a lot of directions?” (www.babycenter.com) Overall, does the doctor seem genuinely interested in your child or does he seem distracted or rushed? Take your overall impression into account when making your decision.

5

BEDSIDE MANNER How the doctor interacts with your child will have a lot of impact on the decision to choose a pediatrician. Do you feel comfortable around the doctor? Does your child? Are they willing to take the time

to listen to your questions and concerns? A good bedside manner can go a long way in making you and your child feel comfortable. Finding the right pediatrician can be overwhelming but realize your decision does not have to be permanent. It’s important to recognize you are not stuck with your decision. You see your pediatrician a lot in those first months and if there is something really bothering you, it’s okay to switch.” says Becky Baldridge Olathe, KS mom. The parent’s goal is the same as the pediatrician, a happy and healthy child. When you find a doctor that is a good fit for your family, you can all work together to reach this goal. Sarah Lyons is a mother of six children, including 2-year-old triplets. With a full house, they visit the pediatrician very often.

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• If you’re unclear why a certain medication is prescribed or why a test is done. • If you can’t come to an agreement, or at least a middle ground, on most issues. • If the location and hours are no longer work for your family. • If the doctor often seems inaccessible when your child is sick. • If the doctor is making you feel bad or consistently reproaching you for parenting choices. • If you feel the doctor is not listening to your concerns. • Before switching, discuss your concerns with the doctor. If a compromise cannot be made, it’s time to look elsewhere. Your child’s health is top priority.


Know Your Rights U.S. Department of Labor, DOL.Gov: Family & Medical Leave Act (FMLA), Affordable Care Act, Fair Labor Standards WomensHealth.Gov: Pregnancy rights, breastfeeding in the workplace

26 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


Maternity Leave

Realities written by Christa Melnyk Hines

Just as you’re getting into the rhythm of new parenthood, reality hits—it’s time to plan for your return back to work. Manage the transition from maternity leave to work with confidence! Here’s how.

COORDINATE YOUR RETURN. Schedule calls with your human resources department and your supervisor at least two weeks before your leave ends to confirm your return to work date and get questions answered in a timely manner. “They’re looking at it from two different perspectives,” says Cheryl Wright, president, Darda Human Resources Advisors. “HR is looking at it from leave compliance policies, but there’s also the aspect of transitioning back into the work team—your supervisor or manager can help with some of that.” Wright suggests asking HR questions like: • Have there been any changes to workplace policies and procedures? Are personnel working from home and/or alternating days in the office (due to COVID-19)? • What are the company’s policies for nursing mothers? Is taking time

to pump a paid or unpaid break? • Where is the lactation room? How do I access is it? Will I need a code or a key to get in? Will I need to schedule the room in advance? If you’re seeking more schedule flexibility when you return, Wright suggests opening the dialogue with your supervisor and HR sooner rather than later. “That allows the company time to figure out how much and how to accommodate the request,” she says. Check in with your manager or supervisor and one or two of your colleagues. Find out what has changed in your absence to avoid surprises or a sense of disconnect to the team. You might ask questions like: • How has the team changed? Any new hires? Promotions? • What projects is the team focused on? What projects have been completed?

VISIT YOUR CHILD’S DAYCARE. Although you likely toured your daycare prior to your baby’s birth, schedule another visit a week or two before you head back to work. Ask questions like: • What do I need to bring? • Would it be helpful for you if I wrote out my baby’s schedule? • How do you put the babies down for naps? The visit “proved to ease my mind closer to the time. And then I had a little bit of time and space to order something or run to the store, like we needed extra pacifiers for daycare and different kinds of bottle labels—things like that,” says pediatric physical therapist Kailee Noland, a mom of two, and owner of The Movement Mama. If your baby has special needs, go over these with your daycare provider at this time too.

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PREP YOUR BABY FOR BOTTLEFEEDING. If you’re breastfeeding, at about four weeks begin introducing your baby to a bottle. “Start weekly—if not more than that—just so you feel at peace realizing your baby is going to be able to take a bottle when they go to daycare,” Noland recommends.

DO A DRY RUN. Visit your workplace a week or two before you are due back. The short visit helped Noland ease back in, visit with coworkers, get her desk arranged, figure out where she was going to store her pump and milk, and “mentally walk through that first day ahead of time.” “You can plan as much as possible before the baby comes, but you don’t really know logistically what some of those things are going to look like until they’re here,” Noland says. “It gave me that first


opportunity for some space on my own to really feel the magnitude and the weight of being away from my babies.” You may also discover new traffic patterns you weren’t expecting and logistical snafus you hadn’t thought of when it comes to getting to daycare and work on time.

EASE BACK IN. If you can, gradually ease yourself and your baby into the new routine. “I came back in the middle of the week and for the first week, I only worked half days,” says relationship management expert and mindful leadership coach Alex VillalobosMcAnderson, a mom of two boys and owner of Villalobos Vitality. “This really helped with the hormones and getting comfortable with going back.”

SCHEDULE APPOINTMENTS. As much as possible, get well-baby checkups and other personal appointments plugged into your calendar before returning to work to avoid the stress of having to squeeze these appointments into your schedule later. If you’re breastfeeding, don’t forget to schedule pumping breaks too.

PUMPING AT WORK. Planned pumping breaks can help train your body when to release milk, Noland says. Plan a mid-morning, lunchtime and mid-afternoon pump and maintain consistency in your schedule as much as possible during those first few weeks back to work. Noland also recommends bringing photos and videos of

your baby to work, which can help with your milk let down when you need to pump. And store extra pump parts in your desk. “Inevitably you’re going to walk out the door one day and totally forget your parts. It’s great to just have one in your desk on reserve for days like that,” Noland says. “Usually your insurance company will cover the cost of those.” Villalobos-McAnderson says she pumped and stashed a surplus of milk in her freezer before heading back to work. “So if I missed a pumping session, I wouldn’t stress about it.”

KNOW IT WON’T NECESSARILY BE EASY. Even if you love your career, realize that you may still experience some emotional bumps along the road as you adjust to time away from your baby. “I was surprised that with both my babies, I longed to be home with them especially in those early months when they were so small,” Noland says. “It’s really hard to turn them over to someone else to care for them. Of course, no daycare provider is ever going to be mama, but usually people don’t get into childcare if they don’t love children and don’t have a genuine desire to help them. Know that they’re going to really try to meet all of your needs. So just really honor whatever feelings you’re feeling and know they may last or may be transient.”

OUR FAVORITE MUSHIE PRODUCTS www.mushie.com

Muslin Swaddle Blanket Organic Cotton $18.00 Extra Soft Muslin Crib Sheet $22.00

Silicone Place Mats $14.00

Baby Teethers $11.99

Christa Melnyk Hines is a nationally published freelance writer. She lives with her husband and two sons.

Bibs Pacifier $7.99

WANT EVEN MORE GREAT ARTICLES? CHECK OUT OUR NEW WEBSITE! HOUSTONBABYMAGAZINE.COM

Silicone Baby Bib $12.99 Pacifier Clips $14.99

28 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


(i am houston)

meet

mushie feigenson Founder of Mushie & Co, LLC

Being a mom is no easy task, add to it starting and running your own business while still managing a productive family life. Houstonian Mushie Feigenson along with her husband Levi founded “Mushie,” an American baby brand best known for its Scandinavian designed silicone baby bibs, handmade pacifier clips, organic muslin swaddles, children’s dinnerware and toys. WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING ABOUT OWNING MUSHIE?

YOUR DESIGNS ARE SO VERY APPEALING. WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR INSPIRATIONS?

YOU COULD LIVE ANYWHERE IN THE WORLD. WHY CHOOSE TO STAY IN HOUSTON?

Creating a community for moms through social media and making parents’ lives prettier and more convenient!

Scandinavian design + Clean/ Minimalistic Approach. Practical but still pretty in the home.

Levi grew up in Houston, and Houston is a great place to own a business. Texas is a great state as it continues to expand. We have a lot of family here, as well.

HOW DID YOU GROW THE COMPANY SO QUICKLY? A lot of sleepless nights, A lot of persistence, and A lot of luck. We worked day and night to develop new quality products and give the best customer experience.

DESCRIBE YOUR CUSTOMERS. Modern parents that care about style just as much as they care about practicality and safety.

WHAT IS THE MOST CHALLENGING PART OF BALANCING WORK & FAMILY? The hardship is that I am a perfectionist and also want to be a present mom, so oftentimes I forget to take care of myself.

WHAT IS YOUR FAVORITE THING(S) TO DO AS A FAMILY IN HOUSTON? Go to the park and spend time with family!

HAS THE PANDEMIC AFFECTED BUSINESS? IF SO, WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO ACCOMMODATE THE CRISIS? Thankfully, a large portion of our business is online. However, as many companies have done, we had to make adjustments to our operations and processes to adapt to the world around us.

29 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

ARE THERE ANY GOALS YOU STILL WANT TO REACH? We are really excited about expanding our catalog of products and offerings that parents love.

WHAT IS NEXT FOR MUSHIE? There isn’t just one thing, since there are so many moving parts. We hope to continue to provide value for our community for years to come.

SUPPORT LOCAL! Head over to MUSHIE.com to see their wide array of adorable baby safe products for your little one.


HOUSTON BABY PRODUCT GUIDE

on the go

01

01 | Piccolo Stroller by Chicco With its super-compact, tri-fold design, the Piccolo™, is a must-have second stroller for on-the-go parents.

$229.99 • www.chiccousa.com

02 | Joolz Hub+ Stroller The Joolz Hub+ is the sharpest-looking new stroller in the city. Compact yet comfortable. Stylish and lightweight. This sophisticated stroller is the perfect companion for exploring the urban jungle.

02

$39.96 • www.joolz.com

03 | Key Fit 35 Infant Car Seat The KeyFit® 35 Infant Car Seat is engineered with the #1-rated innovative safety features that make it the easiest to install and use correctly, every time.

03

$249.99 • www.chiccousa.com

04 | B.O.B. Gear Alterrain Stroller BOB Gear’s new jogging stroller, the Alterrain, provides a smooth ride on any terrain. Its upgraded features, along with a streamlined frame and mélange athleisure fabrics, ensure this ruggedly durable stroller was built to accompany families on any adventure.

04

$549.99 • www.bobgear.com

05 | LullaGo Anywhere Bassinet Not too big, not too small, LullaGo® Anywhere is just the right size bassinet for your newborn’s first months. Weighing only 12 pounds, its lightweight design, compact footprint and convenient carry bag provide restful sleep at home and away.

$99.99 • www.chiccousa.com

06 | SideKick Plus 3-in-1 Hip Seat Carrier by Chicco The adaptable SideKick™ Plus 3-in-1 Hip Seat Carrier makes carrying easier and more comfortable for both parent and child.

06

$99.00 • www.chiccousa.com

07 | W2 Multifunctional Double Stroller Wagon This 2 seater wagon is perfect for kids and parents on the go!

$389.00 • www.wonderfoldwagon.com

05

08 07

08 | eClip Baby Car Seat Alarm In the event that your baby is accidently left in the car, the eClip Smartphone App will be activated to alert you immediately.

$44.95 • www.elepho.com 30 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

never forget baby in the car


HOUSTON BABY PRODUCT GUIDE

diaper bags

built in wipe dispenser

03

01

02

01 | M.O.T.G. Convertible Backpack by Vilah Bloom Carry this bag as a crossbody or backpack with it’s easily removable, adjustable strap. Featuring our exclusive built-in wipe system, 2 insulated exterior bottle pockets and 5 organizational pockets throughoutincluding a padded interior electronics pocket. Just the bag for modern, on-the-go parenting. $149.99 • www.vilahbloom.com 04

05

02 | Cafe Crossover by Vilah Bloom The new Boxy Backpack in Botanical leatherette is their classic design with a beautiful floral design that will put a spring in your step year round!

$169.99 • www.vilahbloom.com

03 | The Bailey by Sleepy Panda This diaper bag backpack is durable, fashionable, and will definiely keep you organized.

$159.99 • www.mysleepypanda.com

04 | Bodhi Diaper Changing Backpack 06

Equipped with an integrated changing station, this bag is designed to fold out in seconds and give you peace of mind knowing you’re ready to go whenever the baby is ready to go.

$129.00 • www.papercliplife.com

05 | Signature Diaper Caddy by Arabella Baby A perfect baby shower gift, this portable changing table organizer and travel bag holds diapers, toys, wipes, so much more! As they grow, you’ll use it for dolls, blankets, toys, snacks, etc.

$25.00 • www.arabellababy.com

06 | Happy Luoka Diaper Bag with Bassinet Changing Station

converts to a portable crib

Diaper bag backpack with auto folding crib, portable sleeping mummy bag includes insulated pockets, multi-functional baby bassinet diaper backpack organizer with diaper changing station.

$49.99 • www.amazon.com 31 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


HOUSTON BABY PRODUCT GUIDE

baby clothing

01

04 03

02

locally made in Houston, TX 07

05

06

09 08

helps prevent accidental leaks

10

32 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


01 | Zipease Sleeper Newborn Gowns

06 | ergoPouch Sleep Suit Bag

Changing your new bundle of love has never been easier! Only the softest and stretchiest fabrics go into our newborn-ready gowns. Plus, fold over mittens and an elastic free bottom band are standard.

$28.00 • www.zipeaserombers.com

The award-winning Sleep Suit Bag converts from a baby or toddler Sleeping Bag to a Sleep Suit with legs using the zippers, making the transition from cot to pram or car an easy one. In Sleep Suit mode, it’s also perfect for little wrigglers and movers who like more leg freedom in sleep, and toddlers transitioning from cot to bed.

02 | Zipease Baby Rompers

$69.99 • www.ergopouch.com

Zipease baby rompers, simply unzip from ankle to ankle with our patentpending zipper design to quickly change a diaper. Our modern rompers feature a stretchy neckline to easily shimmy up your child’s body to quickly dress them. Quick on, easy off, simple diaper changes.

$38.00 • www.zipeaserombers.com

Come “grow with me” in this beautiful tunic play set. Super soft premium cotton and timeless hunter green houndstooth plaid beautifully detail this cut. Comes with matching bloomers. Handmade in Texas, USA

$78.00 • www.ibambini-clothing.com

03 | Pediped Originals Boo Bear Shoes Perfect for beginning walkers, all pediped® Originals feature leather soles for ultimate flexibility and lasting quality. Our updated Originals® soles feature a diamond leather tread that is more slip resistant yet still crafted completely of high-quality, non-toxic leather that allows little toes to move, grip, and feel the floor.

$39.95 • www.pediped.com

08 | BoomBoom Blowout Bodysuits Patent pending bodysuits have breathable, waterproof, and antimicrobial backs that contain blowouts when diapers fail.

$46.00 • www.boomboombabyco.com

09 | Alberta Dress by iBambini

04 | Pom Pom Leggings by iBambini Essential leggings with the copious fluffy ruffles that everyone is after!

$38.00 • www.ibambini-clothing.com

05 | ergoPouch 2-Piece Pajamas 2-Piece Pajamas for kids aged 2-5 Years. Designed to be warn under the ergoPouch Sleep Suit, Sleeping Bags and Sleep Onesies.

$34.99 • www.ergopouch.com

07 | Birdie Tunic Playset

Your little one will love prancing around in this adorable and trend dress, no matter what day it is! Available in a variety of colors like pink, light blue, and midnight polka dots, you’re sure to find the perfect color dress for your little girl. All of our children’s clothes are meticulously handcrafted with love, right in the heart of Texas.

$59.00 • www.ibambini-clothing.com

10 | Dailies Body Suit Keep baby temperature regulated with these cozy moisture-wicking bodysuits.

$18.00+ • www.theollieworld.com

JENNA DUNCAN PHOTOGRAPHY Houston Family Photographer

To book, contact: WWW.JENNADUNCAN.PHOTOGRAPHY JENNADUNCANPHOTOGRAPHY@GMAIL.COM

Featured in: 33 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


HOUSTON BABY PRODUCT GUIDE

feeding time

01

01 | Bumpkins Silicone Grip Dish with Lid

Can we get a high five for the new fivesection version of the original Silicone Grip Dish? With a leak-resistant lid, it’s great for storing leftovers or prepping meals!

perfect for babies and toddlers

$29.95 • www.bumpkins.com

02 | Bumpkins Silicone First Feeding Set Our Silicone First Feeding Set helps you to introduce solid foods and transition your baby to self-feeding. The suction base keeps the bowl from sliding or flipping over. Great for use on highchair trays or tables. The easy to grip double-end silicone spoon grows with baby – one end is for dipping into purees and the other for scooping solid foods.

$15.95 • www.bumpkins.com

02 03

03 | Harry Potter SuperBib, 3-Pack The bibs attach over the back of the shoulder with hook and loop closure for a quick, adjustable and tug-proof fit. With a handy crumb catcher / catch-all pocket for containing spills. Ages 6-24 mo.

$17.95 • www.bumpkins.com

04 | Micuna Ovo High Chair Composed from four beech wooden legs and a rounded seat, this beautiful and modern highchair can also be converted into a toddler chair. You’ll love everything about it!

$499.99 • www.micunausa.com

05 | Bumpkins Silicone Dipping Spoons Introduce baby to the world of self-feeding and utensils with this set of starter spoons. Made from 100% food-safe silicone that is gentle on gums, Silicone Dipping Spoons are double-ended to grow with baby—one side for dipping into purees, the other for scooping.

04

$12.95 • www.bumpkins.com

06 | Bökee Baby Bottle Accessory Bottle prep accessory that allows parents and caregivers to make any bottle/sippy cup with just one hand!

$19.99 • www.thebokee.com

05

06

made with real wood 34 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


09

07

a must have for teething Super

Cute! 10

07 | KidCover Tiny Tux The KidCover™ by KidDazzle™ is made with 100% food grade silicone, and polyester with a waterproof coating. While the amazing deep silicone pocket captures most dropped food, the KidCover™ also features extra-long material to keep laps clean.

08

$39.99 • www.kiddazzle.com

08 | Neckerchew Teething Bib

11

The Neckwerchew’s teether is attached to the bib, so no more picking up dropped teethers. The bib is secured by two adjustable poppers to grow with the baby. Suitable from 2 months-2 years.

$9.99 • www.kalencombaby.com

09 | Toofeze Teether

easy meal planning for every stage 12

Toofeze is a functional and convenient teething tool that allows baby to self-satisfy and easily manage their pain independently. Three distinct chewing surfaces. Food grade ingredients. Gets cold anywhere instantly! Award winning & pediatrician recommended. Simply the COOLEST teether ever!

$23.00 • www.toofeze.com

10 | Baby’s Brew Portable Warmer As the only battery-powered travel bottle warmer, the Baby’s Brew is the convenience new parents need to quickly and reliably warm their baby’s breastmilk or formula.

$75+ • www.thebabysbrew.com

11 | Wave Bowl Feeding Set The Wave Bowl’s innovative wave design promotes use of utensils by assisting in filling spoons with food. The base suction cup firmly holds bowl to prevent spills. the natural beech wood is strong, resists splitting and is free from harmful chemicals.

$19.99 • www.kalencombaby.com

12 | Nurture Life Toddler Meals Nutritious, freshly made meals designed by dietitians and chefs for every age. Delivered to your door and ready to enjoy in minutes.

$39+ • www.nurturelife.com


HOUSTON BABY PRODUCT GUIDE

breast feeding

02

01

03

01 | Ella Maternity, Nursing & Pumping Bralette Modern maternity and nursing bralette you will want to show off. Includes standard black nursing clips, all over lace details and racerback styling.

04

$69.00 • www.davinandadley.com 05

02 | Lansinoh Smartpump 2.0 The Smartpump 2.0 Double Electric Breast Pump allows you to discreetly pump comfortably and confidently from anywhere. Connects seamlessly to the Baby 2.0 app via Bluetooth® to automatically track your pumping sessions and more.

$127.49 • www.amazon.com

03 | Upspring Milkflow Lactation Coffee Drink Milkflow provides a delicious coffee for breastfeeding moms! Helps support the hormones that naturally promote breast milk supply.

07

$14.99 • www.amazon.com

04 | BusyTabs BusyTabs are easy to use clips that go on any bra or shirt! They are made with soft satin ribbon and promote latch and focus.

$19.99 • www.nursememamma.com

05 | Lansinoh Organic Nipple Balm This Lansinoh nipplecream is a natural plantbased remedy for tender nipples and dry skin

$14.97 • www.amazon.com

06 | Visy Bra 2 pack

06

Say Hello to a Comfy Bra and Goodbye to Underwire! Visual graphics on frame to help baby focus and latch.

$39.99 • www.nursememama.com

an easier way to pump

07 | Lively Mesh Trim Maternity Bralette A.K.A. the mama must have bralette! Drop down cups make nursing on the go easy while the sleek nylon fabric keeps you comfy all day.

$35.00 • www.wearlively.com 36 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


HOUSTON BABY PRODUCT GUIDE

maternity wear

01

02

01 | PinkBlush Navy Blue Lace Mesh Overlay Maternity Maxi Dress 03 04

A lace mesh overlay maternity maxi dress featuring beautiful scalloped trim, semi-sheer short bell sleeves and back, a v-neckline, and a hidden zipper/hook back closure. Bust and skirt are double lined to prevent sheerness.

$95.00 • www.pinkblushmaternity.com

02 | Seraphine Denim Maternity Overalls Breathe a sigh of relief mama – these maternity overalls are about to change your life. Expertly tailored to grow with you through pregnancy, they are made in soft stretch denim & feature adjustable panels at the sides for a flexible fit.

$65.00 • www.seraphine.com

03 | Seraphine Tiered Maternity & Nursing Dress A feminine style with a flirty flutter heart print, our Tiered Maternity & Nursing Dress is the perfect choice for pregnancy & beyond.

$75.00 • www.seraphine.com 05

04 | Glowe Maternity Leggings

06

The only legging so supportive, comfortable & versatile to take you through all 9 months of pregnancy and beyond, with no sagging in sight!

$116.00 • www.glowecollection.com

05 | Rust Layered Front Maternity/ Nursing Fleece Hoodie An ultra soft knit maternity/nursing top featuring fleece lining, an adjustable drawstring hood, long sleeves and a layered front for easy access.

$41.00 • www.pinkblushmaternity.com

06 | Seraphine Mama & Mini Sweatshirts 07

07 | Motif Maternity Compression Socks Our pregnancy compression socks are designed to promote healthy blood circulation and alleviate swelling and varicose veins in the feet and lower legs.

$29.99 • www.motifmedical.com 37 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

The Mama nursing sweatshirt features easyopen snaps at the sides for breastfeeding, while the mini version fits from 0 - 3 months & has snaps at the shoulder for easy changing.

$89.00 • www.seraphine.com


HOUSTON BABY PRODUCT GUIDE

sweet dreams 03

01

02

01 | Bamboo Swaddle Blankie – Eric Carle Moonstars The Dream Weighted Blanket is designed to keep your child warm and cozy now, and for years to come.

$18.00 • www.nestdesigns.com

02 | Dream Weighted Sack & Swaddle Our weighted sack with detachable swaddle wing can be used as a swaddle or sleep sack. It is designed to help baby feel calm, fall asleep faster and stay asleep longer.

$79.00 • www.dreamlandbabyco.com

03 | Dreamland Baby Weighted Blanket The Dream Weighted Blanket is designed to keep your child warm and cozy now, and for years to come.

05

04

$99.00 • www.dreamlandbabyco.com

04 | Sweet Dreams- 36 Bedtime Wishes Card Set Sweet Dreams contains 36 bedtime wishes for parents to share with a child, each accompanied by a children’s book illustration.

$24.75 • www.amazon.com

05 | Close To You Bedside Bassinet This bedside sleeper and portable bassinet conveniently converts to a height-adjustable changing station for extended use up to 35 pounds.

06

$299.99 • www.chiccousa.com

06 | Eclipse Wellness Excel Hybrid Waterproof 2-Stage Crib Mattress Provide your little one with the optimal comfort of the Eclipse Wellness Excel Hybrid Waterproof 2-Stage Crib Mattress. Designed with center coils to keep baby toward the middle of the mattress. Use the plush reverse side for a growing toddler.

07

$269.99 • www.buybuybabyco.com

07 | Smart Beat Baby Video Monitor Smart Beat is a new first-of-its-kind video baby monitor that detects a baby’s breathing without wearables. It’s the safest, easiest, most secure way to know baby is breathing. 38 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

$180.00 • www.mysmartbeat.com


BATH AND BODY 01

03

01 | Bubbles & Joy Monthly Subscription Box Each month, Bubbles & Bath subscribers receive a curated box of best-in-bath products and brands. From unique toys and activities to colorful and aromatic bath bombs and bubble baths, Bubbles & Joy boxes contain a variety of kid-friendly items made from safe, BPA-free materials and/or natural ingredients. We like to think of them as surprise “bath time party-starters.”

$39.00 • www.bubblesandjoy.com

02

02 | Dr. Talbot’s Non-Contact Infrared Thermometer

04

Provides accurate readings in just one second, without needing contact with the skin. The thermometer is accurate to within 0.4 DegreeF (0.2 DegreeC) and includes a fever Warning indicator to alert if someone has a fever.

$45.00 • www.amazon.com

03 | Evereden Newborn Starter Bundle Nontoxic, gentle skincare for your precious newborn’s needs.

$67.00 • www.ever-eden.com

04 | Niki’s Natural Baby Wipes

shop local 05

4 Pack- 100% natural organic and biodegradable baby wipes. Made with manuka honey essence and coconut oil.

06

$29.95 • www.nikis.com

05 | Blooming Mama Self Care Essentials You deserve to be pampered, mama! Our Blooming Mama Bundle has been crafted to bring emotional support and skincare during your pregnancy.

$44.99 • www.calm-a-mama.com

06 | Sweet & Sudsy Bath Soaps Making bathtime a time full of wonderment and whimsy

$5.00+ • www.sweetandsudsy.com 39 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


HOUSTON BABY PRODUCT GUIDE

educational play

01

01 | Oribel Portaplay Activity Center Wonderland Adventures The Best Baby Activity Center that folds and transforms. Convert from a baby activity center to a play table in a snap. Replace the seat and toys with the included cover and plugs to transform it into an activity table! The height-adjustable legs of the PortaPlay fold inward at the touch of a button and allows easy transport or storage! $119.00 • www.amazon.com

02 | KiddoLab Chapa the Lion My First Tablet Chapa the Lion loves to read! This educational toy for girls and boys will get them on the right track early as they read along with this lovable lion. Designed for children ages twelve months plus.

$29.99 • www.amazon.com

03 | SmartMax Start Plus Start Plus is a 30 piece STEM-focused magnetic discovery building kit, featuring safe, super-strong, oversized pieces. For kids of all ages, safe for 1+.

$39.99 • www.amazon.com

03

02

04 | Saro Baby Plush Toys An inseparable friend to discover the world with, cuddle, and share many adventures with. These lovable plush toys will provide security and comfort for your child.

$12.99 • www.kalencombaby.com

05 | My First Model Y The My First Model Y delivers the superior Tesla experience for the littlest drivers. Developed in partnership with the Tesla Design Studio, this premium ride-on is an authentic kid-sized version of the beautifully sculpted Tesla Model Y body.

$99.99 • www.radioflyer.com

06 | Counting Friends Wood Layering Puzzle 1 to 5 Have you learned how to count yet? These animals will help you. With the Counting Friends wooden puzzle, children can immerse themselves level by level in the world of numbers and, at the same time, develop a basic understanding of numbers.

04 05

$12.99 • www.amazon.com

07 | Elsie Doll Gift Set The perfect doll gift set featuring Elsie Girl… Friend and a darling extra outfit, including the too cute mary jane shoes to go with, in a delightfully illustrated gift box.

$59.95 • www.bunniesbythebay.com

08| Short-Sleeved Art Smock Perfect for your budding artist, the ShortSleeved Art Smock keeps creativity from staining clothes. It can also be used as a bib for messy eaters. Ages 3-7.

$12.95 • www.bumkins.com

06

40 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


08

07

09

11

09| Haba Wooden Numbers Farm Arranging Game Counting can be such fun. This cheerful and colorful number game with its many attractive images encourages children to learn numbers and quantities via the medium of play.

10

$29.99 • www.amazon.com

10| Square Panda Playset and Learning Games Give your child a head start learning to read and make the experience fun!

$69.95 • www.squarepanda.com

12

grows with your child

11| Playzone-Fit Kidtrix Deluxe Doorway Swing Indoor swing, hammock and monkey bar set

$129.99 • www.b4adventure.com

12 | Little Partners Limited Edition Learning Tower The Limited Edition Learning Tower lifts your baby to kitchen counter height to encourage interaction and togetherness between children and parents.

$239.99 • www.amazon.com

13

13 | LittiCity Chef Set with Cookbook Cook up some fun! Our chef kit contains everything you need for hours of cooking fun - real or imaginary.

$19.99 • www.litticity.com

41 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21


DON’T PUT YOUR HEALTH ON HOLD

SCHEDULE AN IN-PERSON OR VIRTUAL VISIT TODAY Routine checkups are essential to long-term health. That’s why Memorial Hermann Medical Group has put enhanced safety measures in place at all locations. Whether you opt to see your doctor in person or through a Virtual Office Visit, you can get the care you need with peace of mind. To schedule a same-day or next-day appointment, call 832.658.MHMG (6464).

Advancing health. Personalizing care. 42 | HOUSTON BABY MAGAZINE Winter 20/21

memorialhermann.org/mhmg

Profile for Houston Family Magazine

Houston Baby Magazine- Winter 20/21  

New & expectant parents are full of excitement, questions & concerns. We are here to provide support, answers & resources to help you naviga...

Houston Baby Magazine- Winter 20/21  

New & expectant parents are full of excitement, questions & concerns. We are here to provide support, answers & resources to help you naviga...