Adjusting to this “new normal” as a family Managing back-to-school anxieties Meet our
Guest Editor Priyanka Naidoo
Healthy eating on a budget
What to pack for the Hospital
Planning the perfect VIRTUAL baby shower
BABYWEARING WORKOUTS TO KEEP YOU FIT FREE ISSUE 26
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Contents IN THE SPOTLIGHT HELPING CHILDREN MANAGE THEIR BACK TO SCHOOL ANXIETY
ADJUSTING TO THE UNCERTAINTY OF LOCKDOWN
A N T E N ATA L 1 0 1 HOSTING THE PERFECT VIRTUAL BABY SHOWER
HOMEBIRTH: WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW
HELLP SYNDROME AND WHY I AM AN NICU MOM
CONTROLLING YOUR BLOOD PRESSURE DURING THESE STRESSFUL TIMES
PREGNANCY SUPER FOODS
BA BY NO EXCUSE NOT TO EXERCISE: KEEPING FIT WHILE WEARING YOUR BABY
5 REASONS YOUR BABY IS RESISTING THE NAP TOOLS TO BUILD HAPPY AND SECURE CHILDREN
TODDLER MAKING SCREEN TIME POSITIVE
KEEP YOUR TODDLER LEARNING WHILE AT HOME
F A M I LY SWITCHING FROM PARENT MODE TO TEACHER MODE
UNLOCKING LOCKDOWN: HOW TO MAKE THE MOST OF LOCKDOWN
THE BEST WAY TO STICK TO YOUR BUDGET IS TO START ONE
REGULARS ED’S NOTE & GUEST ED’S NOTE
MEET THE COVER STAR
HUGGIES ASK THE EXPERTS
ACTIVITY: MAKE AN OWL
GUEST EDITOR’S BLOG
AU G U S T 2 0 2 0
Editor s Letter
Life needs to go on
Despite the hurdles these troubled times present us with, we are reminded by the presence of our children that life needs to go on. Instead of mourning the losses that have been hurled at us, our little people remind us to remain grounded, to enjoy the simplicity of life, and to make the most of today. We understand your challenges, and to help you be the best you can be during these times, we have put together information that will guide you to make informed choices and enjoy life as much as possible. Assisting us as guest editor on this issue is Priyanka Naidoo, mom to two-year-old Eden Leia Naidoo and a parenting coach. Priyanka is passionate about empowering parents through the exciting and exhausting phases of parenthood. She is a firm believer in the value of positive parenting techniques to support the development of resilient, empathetic children. And with our current circumstances, I cannot agree more: we need to nurture and encourage our children’s development through positive reinforcement. Stay safe, stay strong! @ProjeniPather
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Get ready for incredible tips, tools and tricks This issue of Milestones has been very close to my heart, and I feel privileged to work with the incredible MamaMagic Milestones team, creating an encouraging and resourceful space for parents. You will find fun and really inspirational articles as you page through: having a busy toddler of my own, I found the article about keeping your toddler learning while at home on Page 39 is a must read. This pandemic has really forced us to be creative in how we connect with others – now you can even host a virtual baby shower, and share special moments with your loved ones. There are fun ideas and themes on Page 9. Parenting is difficult and even more so now that we find ourselves in the middle of lockdown life, homeschooling and navigating the complexities that have crept into our daily lives. Learning new ways to connect with your kids in a positive and mindful way can change your enjoyment and the culture in your home. As a parenting coach, I have put together a useful guide on building an unbreakable connection with your child and using daily living to enhance your family bonding time. Read more on Page 34. Enjoy this time, put your feet up and get ready for some incredible tips, tools and tricks. Follow me on
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EDITOR-IN-CHIEF – Projeni Pather PRODUCTION & EDITORIAL – Tennille Aron firstname.lastname@example.org SALES – Marita le Roux email@example.com CREATIVE – Berna Hancke-Coles COPY EDITOR – Mandy Collins PRINTING & DISTRIBUTION – Novus Print CONTRIBUTORS Dr Jo-Marie Bothma, Dr Enrico Maraschin, Carey Haupt, Darshan Pather, Dapheney Kroet, Deidre Lindeque, Des Meyer, Donna Bland, Kerry McArthur, Kresan Munian, Michelle Nortje, Nicci Proome, Potso Mpandawana, Teixeira Murray, Tami-Jade de la Guerre, Yashmitha Padayachee, Priyanka Naidoo & Tennille Aron
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Lunathi Qwesha was born on 1 August 2019 in Dobsonville Clinic, to 1694528 parents Mlamli Qwesha and Sindy Radebe. Lunathi has a five-yearold sister named Mbali and they are the best of friends; they can’t be separated from each other. She loves music and dances to any songs she hears. She is shy at first, however quickly warms up to people. She is afraid of food – except for fruit. As long as she has fruit she is good to go. Her full names are Lunathi meaning “God’s love is with us” and Nkazimulo meaning “the glory of God”. Lunathi is more of a Daddy’s girl with a huge personality. She lights up the room with her smile and has a loud voice. She is a true blessing.
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I N T H E SPOT LIGHT
Helping children to manage their
back-to-school anxiety CHANGE CAN CAUSE A GREAT DEAL OF UNCERTAINTY â&#x20AC;&#x201C; CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST MICHELLE NORTJE HAS SOME TIPS ON HOW TO HELP YOUR CHILDREN AS THEY GO BACK TO A VERY DIFFERENT SCHOOL ENVIRONMENT. This year 2020 has been full of unexpected changes. During the national lockdown, those children who were able to, had to adjust to learning using online formats. Now, as the lockdown restrictions ease and children are allowed to go back to school, yet another adjustment is required. Here are a few ways to help ease your childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s transition back to school:
1. Acknowledge the losses
Many children will be looking forward to going back to school to be with their friends, catch up and play together. However, it is important to prepare your child realistically that going back to school will not be exactly the same as before. If a child is not prepared for the differences, they might become more disappointed or upset. For example, children will not be able to hug each other in greeting anymore. The loss of physical ways
of showing affection such as hugs can be experienced as a loss of connecting in familiar ways.
3. Take control by following the 2. Age-appropriate precautions information Children need to be aware of and alert to the concerns and health risks inherent in going back to school. This information needs to be shared with children in ageappropriate ways that they can understand.
In times of uncertainty it can feel as if we are helpless or have lost a sense of control over what is happening around us. One way to feel empowered is to help children take control of the behaviours that can help to keep them safe. For younger children it is especially important to model
and practise hygiene precautions with them. Wearing their mask, washing their hands regularly, taking their vitamins and coughing into their elbow are a few of the new behaviours that need to be practised at home first.
The loss of physical ways of showing affection can be experienced as a loss. At first, they might find these strange. So, creating familiarity with them can ease the newness of these protocols. For example, wearing masks can be made playful by allowing them to choose a cool design or to decorate it themselves. This can make the mask feel less scary and medical.
4. Be aware of your child’s unique coping and strengths
All children have certain remarkable strengths and skills that can help them cope with difficult experiences or obstacles. Spend some time with your child brainstorming their strengths and ways they have coped in the past. For example, maybe your child tells you their strength is that they love drawing and this makes them feel calmer. This can be used to help them cope by getting them to keep a drawing or art journal where they express all their feelings about school and the effects of the pandemic.
5. Have a debriefing space
Another way to manage anxiety is to have a space to talk about what
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was scary or different, or helpful and manageable in your child’s day. Try to create a space after school where your child can debrief with you. This can help them make sense of their feelings and to feel supported and cared for.
6. Maintain a structure
Routine and structure can be a safety net, especially for younger children. The predictability of knowing what to expect each day makes other external uncertainties easier to tolerate and can lessen anxiety. Bedtime routines are one example of creating structure and consistency.
7. Anxiety can affect concentration
When children are feeling anxious it can make it difficult for them to concentrate and pay attention for long periods of time. They may easily become distracted by their worries, such as, “what happens if Mom or Dad gets sick?” or “will I ever be able to hug my friend again?”.
It is especially important to model and practise hygiene precautions. Helping children become aware of and challenge their worries can also help their concentration at school. One way of doing this is to create a ‘worry jar’. Help your child write down their worries each evening, and then slowly go through each one with them and explore whether the worry is real or irrational, and what you can do together to make the worry feel a bit better.
Visualisation does wonders for anxiety. Walk through a day at school with them. Ask them to share the things that make them nervous. By reframing these, your child will gain more confidence for the day ahead
Additional Resources These are very stressful and uncertain times. Here are some additional resources to explore with yourself or with your children should you be struggling with the current stressors. The VIA strengths survey is a positive psychology tool that highlights an individual’s strengths that can be harnessed to manage stressors and struggles more effectively. https://www.viacharacter.org/
Mental health of adults and children has been affected by the global pandemic, changes to schooling and lockdown changed. Here is a link to some self-help tools and information to guide you in making sense of a difficult time. https://www.psychologytools. com/psychological-resources-forcoronavirus-covid-19/
SADAG is an important South African organisation that assists with depression and anxiety. Suicidal ideation can be a very real concern when faced with a loss of control, uncertainty and hopelessness. www.sadag.org
I N T H E SPOT LIGHT
Adjusting to the
uncertainties of lockdown SINCE MARCH 2020, FAMILIES HAVE BEEN THROWN INTO STRANGE AND UNPREDICTABLE NEW PATTERNS OF INTERACTING AND WORKING. CLINICAL PSYCHOLOGIST MICHELLE NORTJE HAS SOME SUGGESTIONS ABOUT HOW TO MANAGE THIS CHANGE. This has been a very difficult and stressful time for parents and children alike. During lockdown, there were many changes that families had to adapt to: working or schooling online, social isolation, and financial uncertainties, to name just a few. Now that the lockdown is gradually shifting levels, there is the ongoing need to remain vigilant for safety and health precautions while also having to navigate new ways of doing business, parenting, and staying connected with loved ones. If parents are able to remain thoughtful and aware of these constantly changing factors, they will be better equipped
to help their children navigate the changes successfully. A parent who is stressed and overwhelmed, however, may find it increasingly difficult to also contain their children’s anxiety. Here are a few tips for parents to help them manage their own anxieties about the uncertainty of the future, so that they have more emotional resources available to be there for their children and loved ones.
feeling healthy and productive. With all the changes happening globally and in South Africa, you may be worrying excessively about the future (thoughts like “what if I lose my job?” or “what if I infect my loved one?).
1. Understand how uncertainty can create anxiety
These kinds of worst-case scenario worries can leave us feeling helpless, and can also lead to physical symptoms such as fatigue, muscle aches, restlessness or irritability and poor sleep.
Uncertainty, new routines or information, and multiple changes can create anxiety and worry that may get in the way of
Don’t let your automatic crisis mode of fight or flight kick in.
2. Managing your worry about the future With all these uncertainties and changes happening each day, it is important to stay active mentally and physically. Self-care is a tool that is frequently spoken about as a part of a healthy lifestyle. Self-care activities help you to refuel and reduce anxiety.
Lockdown time may have offered you a space to reconsider some old habits. Go for a walk, do a chore, set a goal, listen to some music, do someone a favour, write a letter, bake cookies… these are just a few ways to keep balance in your life and keep worries at bay.
3. Practise gratitude Keeping a gratitude journal where you can note down two or three things you feel grateful for each day, can be a helpful tool to shift your focus from the uncertainties and negative news cycles. Positive psychology research highlights that cultivating a sense of gratitude can increase our sense of subjective well-being and coping.
4. Ask questions that may help ease the transition Some of your worries may relate to the safety of going
back to school or work. In some instances, it may be helpful to reach out to the school or employer to find out what precautions and safety protocols have been put in place. Having more information about the areas where you can take back a sense of control, can help ease the tensions created by ‘not knowing’.
5. Relook at your priorities The lockdown time may have offered you a space to reconsider some old habits that may not have been very healthy or productive. On re-entering the world again, you are now perhaps in a position to ask yourself if the things you were doing before lockdown were helpful and satisfying. If not, are there changes you would like to make? And if you have already made beneficial changes, what are they and how can they be maintained? For example, perhaps in lockdown you realised your love of cooking is something that helps to ease your tension. Finding ways to continue this post-lockdown may certainly prove beneficial.
6. Be careful about the quality and quantity of news you watch Watching the news for long stretches, especially when much of what is shown includes violent or conflictual themes, can increase feelings of panic and anxiety unnecessarily. It is important to stay alert and aware, but when finding
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As parents we need to be intentional during this time and mindfully create a culture of hope and joy in our homes, fuelled by love and creating special family memories.
information it is imperative to only use reputable news sources and to actively check you are not being pulled into fake news.
7. Be patient with yourself and ease back in stages There is currently a constant state of flux and adjustment. You might feel like you’ve just found your feet, when another change happens. Be compassionate and kind to yourself as you settle into new routines and adapt to losses and changes. Each person will process these changes at a different pace and in a different way.
Take note of the effects of trauma and fear The consequences of the COVID-19 pandemic can be also be long-lasting and serious. This may depend on various factors such as your previous coping or mental health, access to support from family and friends, financial or job security, dealing with the traumatic effects of isolation, feelings of loneliness, and experiencing hopelessness or helplessness.
Self-care activities help you to refuel and reduce anxiety. If you feel that your mental health has suffered as a result of the lockdown and global pandemic, it is important to reach out for help to friends, family or professionals.
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Hosting the perfect
VIRTUAL BABY SHOWER IN JUST OVER 4 MONTHS, THE COVID PANDEMIC HAS TRANSFORMED THE WAY WE WORK, SHOP AND EVEN THE WAY WE CELEBRATE THE IMPORTANT MOMENTS IN LIFE, SUCH AS BABY SHOWERS. TENNILLE ARON EXPLORES WHAT THE NEW CONCEPT OF A ‘VIRTUAL BABY SHOWER’ ENTAILS, AND HOW TO MAKE IT A MEMORABLE OCCASION FOR EVERYONE.
With the implementation of social distancing practices, the long-standing tradition of showering a mom-to-be with gifts, advice and love at a baby shower has migrated online.
A virtual baby shower – what’s all the fuss? Since ancient times, women have come together to celebrate expectant
mothers before the birth of their babies. This celebration, which usually involves a get-together with mom-to-be’s closest friends and family, provides an opportunity for guests to not only spoil the expectant mommy, but to also show her how much support and love she has around her. Becoming a mother can be an overwhelming experience, especially in these uncertain times. In a world where
social distancing has become a reality, pregnant women can begin to feel isolated and cut off from the rest of the world. However, having a baby shower, even if it is a virtual one, is a great way to show an expectant mom that she is not alone and that she has plenty of encouragement and support from her friends and family. It is also a great opportunity to spoil mom-to-be before the arrival of her little
bundle of joy, and make sure that she has everything she needs for her and baby. Here are a few helpful tips to plan the best virtual baby shower ever.
Location, location, location As with planning any event, the first thing to consider is where you will be hosting the baby shower. Even when planning a virtual baby shower, there are various digital platforms that you can use to host your event. Zoom and Skype are two very popular digital video conferencing platforms, but you can also use Google Hangout or even Facebook Live to host your baby shower. When selecting your platform, consider things like how many people you will be hosting and how long your event will be. On their free plan, Zoom allows for up to 100 people in one video call for 40 minutes. Skype allows for 50 people to be on a video call at one time for up to four hours. If you are looking to host 25 people or less, then you could try using Google Hangout. Regardless of which virtual venue you do decide to use, ensure that that you remember to hit the record button when the party gets started, because this is a memory you definitely want to keep for momto-be, as well as friends and family who couldn’t attend the virtual celebration.
Let’s decorate The one benefit of planning a digital baby shower is that you don’t have to blow the budget on décor. In fact, if you want to, you can skip buying décor altogether and instead create a unique virtual background to use on mom-to-be’s screen.
It is always a fun idea to choose a theme for the event. Here are a few of the more popular themes for baby showers: Unicorns Hot air balloons Nautical theme Dinosaurs Space Disney Mermaids If you do decide to add some décor to mom-to-be’s background, there are plenty of online party stores that deliver décor items depending on the theme you choose for the event. Alternatively, you could just buy a couple of items and drop them off at the expectant mom’s home before the baby shower. A mom-to-be sash is a must!
What’s a party without gifts? A big part of any baby shower is ‘showering’ the expectant mom with presents for her precious new bundle of joy and watching excitedly as she rips apart the wrapping paper to discover what is inside. At many baby showers, this portion of the shower has even become a game where mom-to-be guesses who the gift is from.
Don’t forget to take some screenshots during the festivities. Luckily, the only thing that has to change about this part of the baby shower when migrating online, is that instead of the guests bringing their gifts with them to the shower,
these presents are delivered to the expectant mom beforehand. Either arrange for guests to have their presents delivered straight to the mom-to-be’s home, or you can arrange that all guests drop off their gifts at a specific house, and then they are all transported to the expectant mom’s home before the shower. Creating an online baby registry is a great idea in this scenario, as people can purchase items from the online registry that have been pre-selected by the parents-to-be and have them delivered directly to them.
Game on The best way to make any baby shower enjoyable for both mom-tobe and her guests, is by preparing a few games to play. The good news is that there are still quite a few entertaining baby shower games that can be enjoyed even if you are not all in the same room. Here are some fun games to play at a virtual baby shower:
Guess the size of my belly This is a really simple and fun game for everyone attending the digital baby shower. In this game, each guest is asked to write down how big they think mom-to-be’s belly is in terms of centimetres. Then momto-be measures the size of her belly, and the person with the correct answer, or whoever is closest, wins the game.
The price is right Put together an assortment of pictures of baby products ranging from toiletries to clothes and even equipment. Make sure that you have the correct price for each of the items on the list. Hold up an
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item at a time and allow guests to guess what each item costs. You can have them write down the answers on a sheet of paper. At the end of the game, the person with the most correct answers wins.
range of pictures of celebrity babies and their famous parents. Guests can try to match as many celebrity babies to their parents as they can. Virtual gift cards from some of your favourite stores are great ideas for prizes for the winners of the games as they can be emailed directly to them.
Consider things like how many people you will be hosting Virtual hugs and and how long your kisses! Unfortunately, having a virtual baby event will be. shower means that mom-to-be can’t Baby love songs Ask guests to write down as many songs with the word ‘baby’ in the title within a specific time limit. The winner is the person with the most correct answers when the time is up.
Sweets in a bottle Fill a large plastic baby bottle or glass jar with lots and lots of sweets. You can use Jelly Babies, Milk Bottles or even Jelly Beans. Make sure that you keep a count of how many sweets you put into the jar. Guests are asked to guess the number of sweets in the jar. The correct answer, or whoever is closest, wins the game.
Guess the baby This is a game that requires some prepping beforehand. Ask each guest to send you a baby picture of themselves either through email or via WhatsApp before the baby shower. Number the photographs and make a note of which photo belongs to which guest. At the baby shower, show each picture to the guests and ask them to write down the name of the person they think that picture belongs to. The person with the most correct answers wins the game. A variation on this game is to find a
show her appreciation to her guests attending this important celebration with thank you hugs. A lovely idea to show mom-to-be’s gratitude for her guests’ presence and presents is to make special and unique digital thank you notes for each of the friends and family who attended the online celebration. Canva is a fantastic and easy program to use to create these notes and distribute them digitally. At the end of the day, a virtual baby shower is all about having fun, celebrating the new life that is about to come into the world and spoiling mom-to-be. And the good news is that this can be achieved just as easily from behind a computer screen. Just one tip: don’t forget to take some screenshots during the festivities, so that mom-to-be has some great digital memories to look back on.
Presents are delivered to the expectant mom beforehand.
Things to plan for ahead of time: There are a few things that you need to remember to plan ahead of time to ensure that the virtual baby shower is smooth.
Get dressed up Dressing up is half the fun of any event, so choose a theme and get everyone to dress up accordingly by mentioning it in the invitation. Try not to make it too complicated: even just a specific colour for everyone to wear can make the celebration that much more special.
Food and snacks Although purchasing drinks and snacks is not required for a digital party, it is important to let people know that it is a good idea if they have some snacks and drinks available for themselves during the shower. There is also plenty of food delivery services that you can use to deliver some food and drinks (non-alcoholic, of course) to the mom-to-be. Having a drink to toast with is a must for all guests for this occasion.
Games Depending on what games you have planned for the day, you should let your guests know ahead of time to have some paper, pens and any other stationery that they might need, handy.
I remember wanting a home water birth. I think it’s so important for mothers to explore the available options.
what you need to know
GIVING BIRTH AT HOME WAS THE NORM UNTIL ABOUT HALFWAY THROUGH THE 20TH CENTURY, WHEN HOSPITAL BIRTHS BECAME MORE COMMON. DOULA DONNA BLAND LOOKS AT WHAT THIS CHOICE ENTAILS. Women have many birth choices available to them today, including homebirth. Although there are a lot of questions and controversy around this choice, many women are looking to give birth in an environment where they will receive more holistic, personalised care with a lower rate of intervention. In the age of modern medicine, you might wonder why anyone would choose to give birth at home rather than in hospital. The answer to this question varies from woman to woman: some women simply feel more comfortable in a familiar place, surrounded by family.
Others may have had a bad experience previously in a hospital. Another drawcard is that labour is managed differently in this sort of setting. Intermittent, rather than continuous monitoring is favoured in a homebirth environment, providing more freedom for moms to move around during labour, creating a platform for a more instinctive, empowered birth.
A midwife is the primary caregiver in a homebirth setting. She takes care of mom during her pregnancy, making sure that mom and baby are both healthy and thriving. The midwife guides couples looking to go this route with all the necessary information and monitors the progress of the pregnancy to make sure that they
are good candidates for homebirth. She will recommend gynaecologists who are willing to act as back-up if the need arises.
Transfer to hospital is more common than you may think. The gynaecologist will need to be seen twice during the pregnancy to make sure that the mom and baby’s health are conducive to a birthing at home. A midwife will also not attend a homebirth alone. She will either be accompanied by a fellow midwife or a doula, making sure that there is always a second pair of professional hands available to assist when necessary.
Unfortunately, not all women fit the criteria for homebirth. There are certain prerequisites to consider including: Any significant medical condition, either pre-existing or pregnancy related. Multiple pregnancy e.g., twins. A breech or unfavourable birthing position. Any previous obstetric history e.g., previous caesarean section or
M ILE S TO NES postpartum haemorrhage, etc. Mom’s body mass index exceeding 35kg/m². Significant mental health issues. General health of mom and baby during pregnancy. Providing an expectant mom and her baby are healthy and the pregnancy has been uncomplicated, she may be eligible to birth at home.
A common question about homebirth is around safety. Is it safe to give birth at home? Research has shown that for a firsttime mom, having a homebirth is associated with higher risk than with subsequent pregnancies. This is mainly due to the lack of medical history to compare with from a previous labour, and the uncertainty of how the labour will progress.
Some women simply feel more comfortable in a familiar place. In the event of a woman choosing a planned homebirth, the midwife will make sure that there are backup plans in place, including having the chosen gynaecologist on call. She will come equipped with all the essential equipment and medication that may be necessary for the birth, including some pain medication and resuscitation equipment for the baby. One thing to keep in mind is that transfer to hospital is more common with a planned homebirth than you may think, but most hospital transfers are not emergency situations. Most often, women are transferred for reasons such as failure to progress in labour, or the water bag (amniotic sac) has been broken for an extended period.
Pros and cons
For many women, homebirth may provide the following benefits: The comfort of delivering your baby in a familiar environment. Less pressure to use medication and for interventions to occur. More control over the experience. Lower costs. Convenience, if previous labours have progressed very quickly. The downside to birthing at home may include: Medical aid may not cover all the associated costs. There is more preparation involved than going to hospital. Epidurals will not be available at homebirths. Having to transfer to hospital if the need arises.
So, what will you need to prepare if you are interested in having a homebirth? The first thing I recommend, is to write a birth plan. This will help your midwife and doula understand exactly what you would like from your experience. From a practical perspective, make sure that the mattress on your bed is protected with plastic sheeting and that you have some spare to protect your floors. Towels are also a necessity when birthing at home. I would suggest using clean, older towels so that your nice towels do not get stained. Make sure that you have a good supply of snacks and drinks to keep you energised and hydrated, and food to eat once baby is born. You may need to hire a birth pool from your midwife if your bath is not ideally suited to labour and delivery, should you want to use water for pain management or birthing. Besides that, there isn’t much else to prepare, because you are at home anyway. What I would suggest is having a bag packed for you and baby in case you need to be transferred to hospital.
A wonderful benefit to homebirth is the freedom men have to play a valuable role in the birth team, without the restrictions of hospital protocol. This means that they can be present for all procedures if they so choose. Even with a doula present, there is so much that dads can do to assist with a homebirth. Some men choose to be involved in the actual labour process and rub their partner’s back or help her to find comfortable positions. They may encourage her with loving words and a gentle touch. Some men even get into the water with their partners to be completely present for their baby’s birth. Other men enjoy the practicalities that come with a homebirth: making sure that there is always hot water available for the birth pool, fetching snacks and drinks when needed, knowing where everything is and how everything works – this makes dads invaluable during a homebirth. When men are this involved, they feel empowered and part of this amazing process – something that is not always achieved in a hospital setting. There is a phrase that says, “When a baby is born, so is a mother.” Regardless of how or where you choose to give birth, research all the options available so that you can make an informed decision, based on the existing information.
A midwife will not attend a homebirth alone. Birth can be a beautiful, positive, empowering experience, so ensure that you know what is available to you and surround yourself with people who will help you achieve your goals. For every mom, their birth story is different. A home birth offers an amazing platform for you to write your own unique birth story.
Skin-to-skin in a bottle
Skin-to-skin contact is usually referred to as the practice where a baby is dried and laid directly on their mother’s bare chest after birth, both of them covered in a warm blanket and left for at least an hour or until after their first feed. There is a growing body of evidence that skin-to-skin contact after birth helps babies and their mothers in many ways such enabling colonisation of the baby’s skin with the mother’s friendly bacteria, thus providing protection against infection, and boosting baby’s immunity.
What makes human skin so special?
The skin is the most seen and public organ, yet the least understood. We must understand who we are and what our cells are made of, as we recognise ourselves by our skin. A magnificent array of chemical reactions takes place on a molecular and cellular level within the skin. Human skin is a complex living material, but in biomechanical tests it reveals its homogeneous nature. Our environment can directly
influence who we are. The skin reacts immediately and directly to the outside environment. The skin is the human body’s largest organ and should be looked at as a complex ecosystem. The skin is colonised by a diverse milieu of micro-organisms, most of which are harmless and some very beneficial to their host. In utero, foetal skin is sterile, but colonisation occurs immediately after birth. Microbial communities of the skin and other sites are established and stabilised during the first years of life, especially with skin-to-skin contact with mommy or daddy as a newborn explores its environment and matures its immune system.
Human skin is a complex living material. Environmental factors specific to the individual, including occupation, clothing, skincare regime and antibiotic usage may regulate colonisation by the skin microbiota. The effect of antibiotics on the gut microbiota
has been examined molecularly with sufficient experimental results and a similar assessment of skin microbiota in healthy individuals needs to be explored to understand skin dynamics fully.
Products that sustain the effect of skin-toskin contact
Mommy and baby care, hygiene and skincare products are potential factors contributing to the variation of skin microbiota. For example, the use of products that are not pH balanced will alter the conditions of the skin barrier and may either encourage healthy skin flora growth rates, or cause them to deteriorate.
Can a product optimise your skinto-skin contact with your baby?
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formulates an emporium of signature dermatological products that are as unique to the individual as their own fingerprint. Biomedical Emporium offers a wide range of various skincare solutions for the entire human race, with no exception to mommies-to-be and babies. Its latest formidable skincare series is the Maternology series for pre-conception and pregnancy, and the Biosimilar BioBaby series for baby.
The Maternology range is a skincare range for pre-conception and pregnancy. During the process of trying to fall pregnant, IVF treatments and pregnancy itself, it is important for a woman to change her skincare regime. This range will prepare mothersâ&#x20AC;&#x2122; skin for the skin-to-skin contact after baby is born.
There are a variety of postpartum skin problems that may occur in babies.
the skin being much more sensitive and reactive. There is a long list of ingredients that must be avoided when trying to conceive and while being pregnant. The Maternology range is simple, easy, and safe to use. The ingredients are rich in vitamins and minerals that treat your skin optimally for pregnancy.
Biobaby range: paediatric dermatology
The Biomedical Emporium BioBaby Series was inspired by the twin pregnancy of the award-winning product formulator, Dr Judey. She has developed special care products for babies in the Biomedical Emporium Laboratories that provide the necessary care for sensitive skin, boost immunity and enhance the skin biodiversity. There are a variety of postpartum skin problems that may occur in babies if they lack the necessary microbiota. One of these problems is seborrheic
dermatitis, which is expressed as redness and flaking of the skin. It also causes severe itchiness and makes babies very uncomfortable. This can be due to a lack of fully developed microbiota on the skin to protect against such an expression. For this reason, The BioBaby Series was scientifically formulated with biosimilar microbiota to restore and balance the biodiversity of sensitive and compromised skin.
Many biochemical changes take place during pregnancy. The BioBaby Series is free of allergens, irritants, phenoxyethanol, fragrances, dyes and parabens. Products in the BioBaby series offer gentle care for atopic skin.
Many biochemical changes take place during pregnancy, emotionally, mentally and physically. Pregnancy gives some fortunate woman a beautiful glow due to the elevated hydration and skin moisture retention levels, along with the amplified exposure to vitamins and minerals via placental fluid transport. Unfortunately, for other expecting mothers, the increased and fluctuating hormonal activity during the first trimester can have the opposite effect, such as an increase in sebum production that may cause acne and the expression of pigmentation. Skincare during pregnancy should be simple and easy due to Dr Judey, product formulator and pregnant with twins
syndrome & why I am a NICU mom THE PROSPECT OF HAVING TO SPEND ANY TIME IN THE NICU IS A SCARY ONE. CAREY HAUPT WRITES ABOUT HER EXPERIENCE.
As a first-time mom, I had never heard about HELLP Syndrome, and I had no idea that it would make such a profound impact on my life. So, if you are like I was, HELLP syndrome is a rare, but serious condition. It can happen during pregnancy or shortly thereafter. HELLP is an acronym that stands for the different conditions that can occur: Haemolysis: This is the breakdown of red blood cells. This impacts your body’s ability to carry oxygen from your lungs to your body. Elevated Liver Enzymes: When your liver enzymes are high, it could mean there’s a problem with your liver. Low Platelet Count: Platelets help your blood clot. Any of these can be serious but with HELLP you can have a combination of them all. My story started while I was on holiday. We decided that we would have a special holiday before our baby was born. I was 32 weeks and feeling good. Towards the middle of the holiday I started to retain a lot of water, which I
thought was normal, but then my urine changed colour and I was not feeling so well anymore. We decided to come home a day early, and little did I know that decision saved my life. I was not myself: I slept the entire trip and I felt like there was something wrong. I was not overly concerned at the time, because I had been checked the day before we left by my gynae and everything looked good. However, now something told me I should just check, I felt an urgency.
The main treatment for HELLP syndrome is to give birth as soon as possible. I asked my mom to take me to the hospital while my hubby unpacked the car. I just wanted to make sure, still not believing fully that something was wrong. The nursing staff at the maternity ward were not happy to see me, and did not really want to do a urine test, but
something in me insisted. Out of protest they phoned my doctor to let him know that he had a “difficult” patient. He asked them to do a full blood count because I had been near the Kruger Park and he was worried that I might have picked up malaria. I remember waiting for my results in the coffee shop and saying to my mom: “I really hope that something is wrong with me, otherwise it was all in my head.” As it turned out, I was extremely sick. In fact, I needed to deliver my baby ASAP, not due to malaria, but because I had developed HELLP syndrome. I had no idea what it was, only that my gynae had come to the coffee shop to fetch me with a bed, and said that my husband had 20 minutes to get to the hospital. Fast forward to two hours later, and I was in the recovery room, totally confused, not remembering what had happened. I was not well enough to be awake while giving birth, so I had to have a Caesar and be put under for the birth. I didn’t see my son being born, which is something I had to come to terms with, as the birth was nowhere near what I wanted. I was suddenly a mom of
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a 33 week, 1.78kg little boy. It was too soon. My husband was ecstatic, and I was numb. I was so worried for my son, who I had not seen yet, and the pain was unbearable. My emotions and understanding of what had happened were not at all computing. I was kept in ICU for two exceptionally long days and nights. I looked as if I had been beaten: my back was black and blue. This was due to my low platelet levels and internal haemorrhaging. The doctors were amazed at how quickly I recovered and by day three, I was discharged to maternity. I focused on expressing my breast milk and sending it to my son. It was exceedingly difficult to connect with him because I was not able to see him until I was well enough to leave ICU. He was only in NICU for three weeks, but they were the longest three weeks I had lived though. I am incredibly lucky that my gynae acted so quickly and that I did not have
any of the more serious complications that can occur with HELLP syndrome, including seizure, stroke, liver rupture or placental abruption. There may be a link between HELLP syndrome, and pre-eclampsia and eclampsia. Pre-eclampsia is when a pregnant woman has high blood pressure and damage to other organs such as her liver and kidneys. It usually starts after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Eclampsia is a more severe form of pre-eclampsia that includes seizures.
I looked as if I had been beaten. Most women tend to have higher blood pressure before developing HELLP syndrome, but a few, like me, can develop it with normal blood pressure. The symptoms can occur very quickly and include fatigue, blurred vision, sudden weight gain, swelling, especially
in the face and hands, headache, nausea or vomiting, seizures, pain in the upper right part of your belly and nosebleed or bleeding that doesn’t stop as quickly as usual. The main treatment for HELLP syndrome is to give birth as soon as possible, which normally means having a baby born prematurely. Sometimes your doctor can monitor you, which will give you and your baby more time. They are likely to give you corticosteroids to help your baby’s lungs develop. This is not a birth that any parent would choose for themselves, but from this experience I have learnt how strong my body really is, how quickly I recovered and how wonderful it was to be a mom. I also learnt about the inside of a NICU and all the hard work that goes into being a NICU parent. My son’s birth ultimately made me realise how much support mothers need, and is the reason I became a lactation consultant and started importing breast pumps.
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Delivery during Covid-19
Packing your bag Packing for the hospital is usually an exciting experience for moms-to-be. Here’s how to prepare now that COVID-19 is a factor, writes midwife and nurse Sister Des Meyer. The sense of anticipation of the delivery, and your baby wearing their clothes is all part of the build-up to birth. But now we have a whole new way of having to approach this milestone of motherhood, by preparing for a COVID-19 delivery experience. As the numbers continue to increase, the hospitals and gynaes are at a loss as to how to advise moms-to-be about what to expect at their facilities.There is a real possibility that birth partners and fathers might be refused entry if the numbers of active cases are such that they are hard to control. While we can understand that, it is a hard pill to swallow. We all hope that this will never happen, of course, but as things stand, it’s something to keep in mind. The list below of what to pack for moms and babies is under review even since the last time I spoke on the Instalive session with Mama Magic’s Olerato. The length of hospital stay is steadily shortening, and presently sits at 24-48 hours maximum. For infection control, the hospitals may request that moms minimise the number of items coming from their homes.
Here are my suggestions: Set out my suggested list below (and what your hospital has suggested) on your bed. Plan to pack as little as possible, as you will not be staying for long. Go without the luxuries if you can. Use zip lock bags (quite expensive, so look for cheaper options) of varying sizes. Roll up your nighties, pants or feeding tops and put them into a zip lock bag. Likewise with all your baby items. This keeps them clean and easy to find and pack. You can wipe them down if necessary. Bag all your items in this way.
Press the air out of the bag so it will take up less packing space. Pretend you are going on an overnight flight, and are limited by luggage constraints. Use a small overnight bag, tote or even a plastic shopping bag that you can wipe down.
Plan to pack as little as possible Decant toiletries into travel-sized containers and place in see-through toiletry bag/zip lock bags. Use a small toothpaste and travel sized toothbrush. Once in the ward, don’t unpack. You can just look through your baggies to find what you need. If anything is wet or soiled, you can pop it back into its baggie. (Keep on your lap or a chair, never set on the floor). Make sure you have spare masks and some snacks in a zip lock. So, essentially, look through the list and see what is a must-have vs. a nice-to-have and pack accordingly. My mask protects you; your mask protects me. Sanitise. Distance. And keep in mind you are a mommy warrior who gave birth during a pandemic!
List for baby Onesies x3 Vests x3 Beanie Blanket Receiving blankets x2 Nappies Bum cream Cotton wool balls/rounds Dummy Sterilisation fluid/container Car seat (with a rain cover)
List for mom *nice to haves Front fastening nightie or top Breastfeeding tops/cami Breastpads Breastfeeding bras (wear one, pack one) Feeding pillow* Nipple cream Loose fitting pants/leggings Gown* Slippers, or slip-on shoes (easier to clean) Pads and mesh panties Warm socks Your own pillow from home* Scrunchies, hairbrush etc. See-through travel toiletry bag Travel-sized toiletries Earplugs (drown out noise to relax/sleep) Squeezy bottle for rinsing while urinating (vaginal deliveries) Water bottle with straw Sanitiser and spare mask (FFP2) Lip balm Energy drink/smoothie Snacks (nuts, energy sweets, fruit) Zip lock bags (or equivalent) for wet/dirty items Own pen, ID book, medical aid card (in a zip lock bag) Spare chargers for phone/ camera etc Music on a memory stick*/ phone/tablet Face cloth/microfibre towel (zip lock) Labour ball/gym ball (if hospital does not supply) Massage cream*
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A N T ENATAL
Mothers should take special care of themselves, especially those with underlying conditions. Awareness and techniques for mitigation of stress can be life altering for the new mama.
during these stressful times
HOSPITALS AND DOCTORS’ ROOMS MAY NOT FEEL LIKE THE SAFEST PLACE TO BE RIGHT NOW, BUT IF YOU’RE PREGNANT, YOU STILL NEED TO BE HAVING ALL YOUR ANTENATAL CHECKS, WRITES DR ENRICO MARASCHIN. A professor of obstetrics from Cape Town University recently hosted a webinar on the current COVID-19 situation and its impact on pregnant women. It was extremely informative but also highlighted a serious problem. Pregnant women are missing their antenatal appointments for fear of the virus. Yes, COVID-19 is scary. There are risks. But what must be emphasised is that pregnancy is a very delicate time for a woman. There are so many changes taking place that are both wonderful and critical to the outcome of a healthy baby. Understanding these changes and the importance of antenatal care will perhaps help mothers to be make the right choice about attending their follow-up appointments.
What changes are taking place in the body during pregnancy? One of the major changes occurs in the cardiovascular system. By the time a woman is around 34 weeks pregnant, she will have as much as an additional 1 250ml of blood. As you can imagine, the heart has to work very hard to pump the extra volume throughout the body and especially to the placenta. This is essential for normal growth and development of the foetus.
High blood pressure is also known as the ‘silent killer’. The kidneys also make changes during this time. They release more of a hormone known as vasopressin, and this results in the body retaining more water. These two factors, together with other underlying issues, may lead to high blood pressure. High blood pressure can lead to serious health problems for the mother and infant, but the important thing to know is that in most cases it is preventable and treatable.
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What causes high blood pressure during pregnancy? Drinking alcohol or smoking Lack of exercise Being overweight First-time pregnancy Woman who have had in vitro or other assistance with falling pregnant Multiple pregnancy A family history of pregnancy related high blood pressure Chronic illnesses like diabetes or auto-immune issues
Why is high blood pressure dangerous? Uncontrolled, high blood pressure has serious consequences for mom and baby. Prematurity or poor growth: high blood pressure affects the mother’s blood vessels and makes it difficult for oxygen and nutrients to pass through the placenta. The foetus doesn’t get all that it needs to develop normally, resulting in slow growth, low birth weight and prematurity. A pre-term baby runs the risk of lung problems. Placental abruption: with increased pressure on the mother’s vessels the placenta may tear away from the uterus wall and cause the mother to bleed profusely. Damage to organs: poorly controlled blood pressure may damage the mother’s kidneys, heart, lungs or brain. Future illness for mom: A mother who has suffered pre-eclampsia has a higher risk of cardio-vascular diseases later in life.
What illnesses occur as a result of high blood pressure? Gestational hypertension: This condition usually starts at about 20 weeks of pregnancy. Gestational hypertension needs to be monitored closely, but generally it is a condition
that settles after the baby is born. Pre-eclampsia: This is a more serious condition and it can have severe consequences. It usually occurs in the third trimester. A woman with pre-eclampsia will usually experience numerous symptoms including high blood pressure, protein in the urine, water retention, severe headaches, shortness of breath, vomiting, dizziness and blurred vision. If the pre-eclampsia is left untreated, the woman may have seizures as a result of the condition or develop eclampsia. Gestational diabetes: When blood pressure is poorly controlled, it canlead to gestational diabetes. This affects both the mother and foetus. HELLP syndrome: In very severe cases of pre-eclampsia, a lifethreatening liver and blood condition may develop. H stands for Haemolysis. When this occurs the red cells in the blood are broken down. The E relates to raised liver enzymes which indicate damage to the liver. The E and L relates to elevated liver enzymes, which indicate damage to the liver. The second L and P relate to the low platelet count in the blood. Platelets allow our blood to form clots. If they are too low, a patient runs the risk of bleeding. A woman who develops HELLP syndrome is truly a medical crisis and something that every doctor fights to prevent in their patient.
What can I do to protect myself? High blood pressure is also known as the “silent killer”. A large number of people do not have any symptoms. For this reason, the most important thing is for pregnant woman to attend their antenatal check-ups, where blood pressure can be properly monitored along with the other necessary checks. Along with antenatal checks a pregnant woman should: Eat healthy foods Do moderate exercise Drink adequate water
Avoid alcohol and cigarettes Try to control stress. Small changes in a woman’s life can affect blood pressure, so under current COVID-19 conditions this is a real risk. Women who have pre-existing conditions or where there is a history of blood pressure problems, must inform their healthcare professional.
If I do develop high blood pressure what treatment will I receive? Treatment for high blood pressure will be at the discretion of the doctor. Some high blood pressure medications are not recommended during pregnancy so it is really important that treatment is prescribed by a doctor. In severe cases a woman might need medication to prevent seizures. The doctor may opt to give medication which will help speed up the lung maturity of the baby in case it becomes necessary to deliver the baby before the due date. Pregnancy is a very exciting time, but is also a time when women become anxious and worry more than usual. The current pandemic has left women isolated from family and friends and afraid of medical facilities. It is understandable, but even during this time antenatal checks are vital.
High blood pressure can lead to serious health problems for the mother and infant. Your doctor will take every precaution possible to prevent the risk of COVID-19 infection, but attending these appointments is ultimately up to the mother. If she understands the importance, then she will be able to make the decision that will safeguard her health and that of her unborn child.
IT IS IMPORTANT TO ENSURE THAT YOU ARE GETTING THE RIGHT NUTRITION FOR YOU AND YOUR BABY DURING PREGNANCY. DARSHAN PATHER SPOKE TO DIETICIAN DEIDRE LINDEQUE ABOUT THE BEST PREGNANCY POWER FOODS TO INCLUDE IN YOUR DIET.
‘Eating for two’ during pregnancy is a myth with regards to calories or portion size. But it is important to take twice as much responsibility for your choices. Eat twice as well, not twice as much.
pregnancy. Don’t know where to begin? Fear not, we’ve got you covered! Here is a list of some pregnancy ‘superfoods’ to include in your diet as you grow your little bump.
other awesome stuff that can improve the appearance of skin, strengthen vision and regulate blood pressure. Add it to your creamy pasta bake or as a steamy side to your roast chicken dinners.
According to the American Obstetric Society, a singleton pregnancy will require an additional 300 calories into your daily diet from your second semester. This equates to a glass of milk and a 100g chicken breast.
Eat twice as well, not twice as much. With all the diet fads and nutritional advice doing the rounds, it’s hard to decide what foods are actually good for you during your
Beans not only taste good, but are packed with protein, iron and fibre. Focus especially on black beans, lentils and chickpeas. Black beans give that garden salad an extra bit of flavour and texture. A heartwarming bowl of lentil soup is great for the immune system, and hummus is a perfect snack with some celery and carrot sticks.
Broccoli is an essential green that contains calcium, fibre, folate and
“Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall, Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.” As a complete protein, containing all amino acids, eggs aid in growth and development of the new baby. Scrambled eggs on toast, cheese and spring onion omelette, potato and egg salad – the opportunities to add egg to your diet are endless!
This heavenly drink is an amazing source of calcium, protein and vitamins A and B. There are many
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variations, but when you’re expecting it’s advisable to go for the fresh, full-cream kind to gain more nutrients. Coconut, almond or soymilk, as well as lactose-free milk, are great alternatives for lactose intolerance. A simple glass of warm milk with a hint of honey and nutmeg will get you ready for bed in no time, and provides 50% of the ‘nutrient gap’ induced by pregnancy.
Besides the potential benefits of nuts on brain function development of the foetus, they are also a great source of healthy fats, fibre, vitamin E and other nutrients. As a great source of both fat and protein, nuts are a great snack to help regulate
pregnancy-related blood glucose fluctuations. A handful of almonds first thing in the morning can help to keep morning sickness at bay.
Wild-caught salmon is rich in omega-3 fatty acids, low in saturated fat and a great source of vitamin A, B, D and numerous micronutrients. Unlike the larger fish, tuna and swordfish, the mercury content is significantly lower, but it is recommended to limit intake to twice weekly. To reduce the risk of food poisoning, raw fish e.g., in sushi, is not recommended. Stick with fresh, wild-caught cooked salmon, served with a generous portion of steamed greens drizzled in olive oil.
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A handful of almonds first thing in the morning helps with morning sickness. There are plenty of other superhealthy foods that you should prioritise during your pregnancy journey. Eating a large variety of foods is one of the most important nutrition tips to focus on. It’s also important to note that if you have any underlying conditions or allergies that you seek advice from a medical expert first. Happy Eating!
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This is such an awesome programme! I remember trying to find creative ways to exercise with my daughter – it’s such fun.
No excuse not to exercise: keeping fit Ed’s Though
while wearing your baby
LOCKDOWN AND THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC MEANS MANY MORE OF US HAVE TO EXERCISE AT HOME NOW – AND THAT CAN BE A CHALLENGE WITH KIDS AROUND. POTSO MPANDAWANA HAS PUT TOGETHER A PROGRAMME SO YOU CAN EXERCISE WHILE BABYWEARING! A lot of us have been home with the family and have had to make do, since the gyms are closed. So the next best thing is exercising at home with the kids around – which can be a challenge. Relaxing of the restrictions to Level 3 has meant we can exercise outdoors at any time of the day, which means you can take walks with your little ones, push baby in the stroller or go for a jog or walk by yourself. After many weeks of lockdown with the family, you probably want some time out to yourself, but this can also be viewed as a way or opportunity to create a stronger bond with your little one/s and instil the culture of a healthy active lifestyle. If you have a toddler you will know that it’s a case of ‘monkey see, monkey do’. Whatever Mommy or Daddy does, they also want to do it.
You probably want some time out to yourself. Our little ones watch us so much and want to be like us. Just yesterday I said to my baby, “squat,” and she did a baby squat and stood up. It was very cute indeed, but I was more than encouraged and felt a push to continue to be a good role model to her. It’s never too early to start.
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With the rising numbers of obesity, we as parents/moms can help deal with this by training with our little humans. I see it as killing two birds with one stone: exercise time and bonding time. These exercises are suitable for babies that can still fit in the carrier. Take special precaution if it’s the first time exercising with baby in the carrier. It’s also important to remember that you need to get clearance from your doctor before starting with any workout, especially if it’s soon after birth. Here are some tips and guidelines: Make sure that baby’s airways are always open. Ensure their back and neck are supported. The carrier should be
snug but not too tight so it doesn’t prevent baby from breathing. When baby is in the carrier, they should not be so far forward that you can’t kiss them or see their face. Baby’s head should be able to rest on your chest. Know the weight and height limit that your carrier can hold, as this will ensure that both you and baby are safe and adhering to the safety instructions. Temperature control. As you start working out both you and baby will get warm. Make sure baby isn’t wearing heavy clothes that will cause them to overheat and make them restless. Hungry baby = unhappy baby. Feed
baby at least 20 to 30 minutes before the workout. Remember that while you are wearing baby, they are right there by the food source. So, if they are hungry and can smell the liquid gold, but are not able to have some, your workout will be disturbed. Now that we have covered the basics, what are the benefits of wearing your baby while exercising? Bonding time with mom. Teaches kids to be active from a young age. Can help soothe baby. You actually get a workout in. Helps with baby’s development. The extra weight helps you to develop resistance.
baby Exercise Programme Notes:
Marching on the spot: two sets of 20 repetitions Air squats: three sets of 10-12 repetitions Shoulder rolls - front and back: three sets of 20 repetitions (10 front and 10 back) Modified high knees: slow and controlled, three sets of 10-12 repetitions
Main session Squats: 3 sets of 15-20 repETITIONS Stand with your feet apart, make sure they are slightly wider than your shoulders. Squat down by bending hips back while allowing knees to bend forward, keeping back straight and knees pointed in the same direction as feet. Descend until thighs are just past parallel to floor. Squat up by extending knees and hips until legs are straight. Return and repeat.
Please warm up. (e.g., Brisk walk in the garden) Drink water. Take breaks when you need to. Don’t push yourself, and keep correct alignment during exercises. Remember: You are awesome and you doing a great job.
Backward lunges: 3 sets of 10 each side Stand with your feet shoulder-width apart and the hands by the sides of the body. Take a step backward with the right leg and strike the floor behind the body with your right forefoot. As your right foot lands on the floor and stabilises, bend your left knee and lower your body down toward the floor. Pause when your left thigh is parallel to the floor. Return to the starting position by pushing off of the right rear foot and straightening out the left leg. Repeat on your other leg. Be sure to keep the upper body straight during the entire exercise.
PliĂŠ squats: 2-3 sets of 12- 15 repetitions Stand with your feet apart, make sure they are slightly wider than your shoulders, point your toes out like a ballerina at about 45 degrees. Make sure you are comfortable and you have balance then gently lower yourself down, bending your knees and sitting back into a squat, keeping your back straight. Squeeze your glutes, then come back up and repeat. If you need more balance and support, you can hold onto a couch, chair or door handle.
Bicep curls with dumbbells/water bottle filled with water: 3 sets of 15 curls each hand Position two dumbbells to sides, palms facing out, arms straight. With elbows to sides, raise one dumbbell with palms facing up all the way to your shoulders. Lower to original position and repeat with opposite arm. Continue to alternate between sides.
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Modified high knees/alternatively add in skipping but without the baby in the carrier: 3 sets 40 seconds to one minute Lift right knee high just above hip while swinging left arm up and right arm back. Lower right leg gently to the floor and as it touches the ground, lift left leg up while pulling left arm back and right arm forward. Continue movement on opposite side, alternating quickly between sides. Reminder: this is a low impact version and there should be no hopping or jumping involved.
TRicep kickback 3 sets of 12 repETITIONS each side Grab a dumbbell with your right hand, place your left foot forward and your right foot back, bend your left knee and lean your torso forward. Raise your right elbow back, so that the upper arm is almost parallel to the floor, and kick back until your arm is fully extended. Slowly lower the dumbbell back to the starting position.
Light cardio Brisk walk for 10-15 minutes and donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t forget to stretch.
These are a few exercises that can help you with exercising while wearing your baby but remember just the action of wearing baby is a start and helps you learn to engage your core. Ensure that you have correct alignment and baby is safe
in the carrier. Do not wear your baby for more than an hour and if you feel lower back pain or pain elsewhere while exercising, please stop the workout. Remember these exercises can be done alone without baby in the
carrier as well. If you donâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t manage to exercise today, then schedule it for the next day. And remember: you are doing a great job!
MOMâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S FAVOURITES Guest editor Priyanka Naidoo talks about the products that have made caring for her child a little easier.
Pigeon baby bottles Eden latched onto this teat the easiest as it was designed for infants from Day 1. We had no leakage or spills with this bottle.
Bright Starts Happy Safari Bouncer
Used under supervision, this is a great chair. The toys are fun and tactile, the bouncing motion keeps baby entertained and we also used it as a first feeding chair.
Leap Frog Toys
Scout portable and large Scout have been great learning toys since birth.
Bumbo booster seat
This was such a help. It was a booster seat, so Eden joined us at the dinner table from four months and it was portable, so perfect for restaurants.
Fisher Price Potty
Which little toddler would not love a little character potty to make the experience playful and inviting? Eden loves ducks, so she finds sitting on the duck quite hilarious.
Potty Training Pants I wish I had more of these. They are versatile, durable, fun and easy to use.
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5 reasons your baby is
resisting the nap
ITâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;S INCOMPREHENSIBLE TO ANY PARENT THAT A CHILD SHOULD RESIST SLEEP, AND YET THEY DO. SLEEP EXPERT NICCI PROOME LOOKS AT WHY YOUR BABY MIGHT BE REFUSING TO NAP.
We have all been there as a mom, dad or caregiver: walking up and down the halls, bouncing on the exercise ball, ready to pull our hair out! We can clearly see that our grumpy babe is exhausted, but why won’t he nap! We are exhausted for them. Here are five main contributors to nap refusal.
1. Your baby’s sleep environment might be overstimulating
There is a high possibility that even though you and your baby boutique designed your baby’s bedroom beautifully, there might be some tiny factors contributing to a more wakeful state during their winddown and putting-to-sleep phase. What baby really needs is a calming environment with as few distractions as possible.
What baby really needs is a calming environment. For example, the mobile hanging over their cot flashing lights and singing gently to them is a lovely little trinket, but to a baby or a toddler it’s a fantastic distraction that can keep them entertained for hours. Our aim would be to create a sleep space for your baby. This would include a dark, cool room with some tranquil white noise in the
background. That means little to no visual distractions with simple decor and a gentle wind-down before all naps and bedtime. This will give you a better chance of a nap happening and your own sleep not completely falling apart.
2. You might have missed their sleep window
A sleep window is the amount of time in hours and minutes that a baby or toddler’s body is able to remain awake before they are naturally ready for sleep again. There’s a natural rise and fall of hormones within their circadian rhythm, which should be able to stay within normal range before secreting cortisol, which is a stress hormone. Catching your baby or toddler within these windows is of utmost importance – if they become overtired, they can become extremely difficult if not impossible at nap and bedtime. I have heard too many times that “My baby is not tired enough to go down for a nap!” In many cases it is not that they are not tired enough to go down for a nap, but that they are actually overtired and have missed their sleep window.
3. During the day your baby has a physiological drive to sleep less
During the night your baby’s level of melatonin rises and their cortisol drops, which results in the perfect concoction for better sleep. Melatonin starts rising rapidly from around 6pm, as the sun sets. This is why we generally get much better
sleep from our babies and toddlers overnight, because melatonin is at its highest and cortisol at its lowest. After midnight, cortisol begins to rise and slowly wake us up for the day as the sun rises. Our melatonin also runs out and serotonin increases. Cortisol peaks at around 8am and stays relatively high throughout the day, which tends to make naps a lot harder, even though our babies are clearly tired. Falling asleep for naps during the day is a lot harder to achieve than going to sleep at night because of the rise and fall of cortisol and melatonin combined.
4 They’re ready to drop a nap
In the early days your newborn will be napping at least around five times per day. At around 18 months they will be dropping down all the way to one nap per day, and by three, they won’t nap at all. There are so many nap transitions throughout this time that it can be difficult to keep up. If you are struggling with naps perhaps your baby’s routine might be slightly off or you’re not matching their sleep needs to what is age-appropriate.
If they become overtired, they can become extremely difficult.
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Let’s have a look at some classic signs that your routine might be slightly off or your baby is ready to drop a nap: consistently plays in their cot/bed for a really long time at every nap consistently has very short naps all day, yet still looks tired suddenly extremely upset at bedtime and nap times they’ve started waking up excessively, commonly before 10pm waking much earlier than before, any time prior to 6am they have become increasingly miserable between naps they started to fall asleep whenever you drive anywhere nap refusal has become excessively worse
5. It is after 3pm
Naps after 3pm are close to impossible and require way more parental assistance. Do not beat yourself up if your baby will not fall asleep unassisted at this time – it’s 100% normal and it is advised that a quick nap at the end of the day after 3pm is actually taken in the arms. We all feel hideously tired and grumpy in the later afternoon, but it’s not a time to expect great naps from a baby. Anything from 30 to 45 minutes is about the most we can reasonably expect at this time. I wouldn’t get too stressed about it, as the lateafternoon nap disappears around seven to eight months anyway. Fortunately, in the later afternoon it’s lovely to take your baby out for a walk in your baby carrier or pram, or to cuddle up together on the couch or rocking chair . In conclusion, watch your baby carefully. If they are not showing signs of tiredness, then watch the clock. Sometimes a baby can go from hero to zero in a matter of minutes with very little warning. When popping baby to bed, ensure their sleep space is a sleep-enabling one, set for the onset of a baby’s sleep and not that of an adult. Remember to check your age-appropriate nap routines to ensure baby is not getting too many or too few naps, and – most importantly – not getting too much sleep at the end of the day, creating a bedtime battle.
Falling asleep for naps during the day is a lot harder to achieve.
PRIYANKA NAIDOO TRANSFORMATION LIFE COACH
Tools to build
secure & happy children CHILDREN LEARN SO MUCH FROM MODELING THEIR PARENTS’ BEHAVIOUR. GUEST EDITOR AND PARENTING COACH PRIYANKA NAIDOO HAS SOME TIPS ON HOW TO BE YOUR CHILDREN’S ROCK AND MODEL THE BEST BEHAVIOUR FOR YOUR CHILDREN.
Parenting is difficult and even more so now that we find ourselves in the middle of lockdown life. We are all trying to find our way around this “new normal, ” especially our children. Our kids are experiencing their own types of stress and anxiety, but the one constant source of comfort and certainty they have in their life is YOU. You have a responsibility to your children; to be present, intentional, and to protect their innocence by positively handling stress, to safeguard your family’s wellbeing. We can start the process with three simple yet powerful tools that we have available to us:
Children, through every stage from toddler to teens, are always watching what we as parents do. They see how we handle stress. They watch how we treat other people and observe how we deal with feelings. They soak it all in like little sponges. Even when you think your children aren’t paying attention, they
are always watching, so it’s essential to be aware of how to respond to situations. We can agree that the primary role of a parent is to protect, provide, and help mould your child into kind, respectful, honest, resilient, responsible adults. More often than not, the easiest and most effective way to teach a child is to model the behaviour and problemsolving skills we want them to learn.
Our little ones have a way of reminding us to reel ourselves in daily. Parenting coach, author and children’s advocate LR Knost says: “Our children are watching how we live far more than they hear what we say, they are learning to live by our choices, not by our words.”
I couldn’t agree more. How often have we, as adults, found ourselves reacting and emulating behaviour that has been modelled by our parents, teachers, or caregivers. This may mean taking a closer look at your habits and making some changes, which will benefit you and your child. Always think of what you want your child to learn from you and try to model that in your life. Naturally, we will make mistakes, and that’s the beauty of life: that we get to try again every day. When our kids see us making mistakes and then solving them or showing them how to be resilient in a tough time, we are exhibiting behaviour that will shape the way they will address a mistake or a difficulty in their own lives. When you do make a mistake and behave in a way you shouldn’t in front of your child take the opportunity to talk to your kids about where you slipped up and how you hope to be different next time. Children learn important lessons from you even when you make mistakes.
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Your presence and love are the basis of what every child needs. Handling and processing emotions are difficult, and we always need space to explore different feelings, even as adults. Emotionally strong and resilient people and children can process and feel an emotion and then let go of the negative sentiment related to the feeling. Demonstrate how to manage emotions, like frustration or sadness, by talking about your feelings when you are upset, angry, or sad, and encouraging your child to do the same. When you want to teach your children something new, whether itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s how to make their bed or how to tie their shoes, show them how you do it. Then, let them practise it on their own. Showing, rather than telling, can be the best way for kids to learn a variety of new skills. Paying attention to your child, praising their good behaviour and effort, makes their little hearts burst with happiness and accomplishment. Here are some examples of other
things that make your presence felt with your kids: Laughing at yourself Saying sorry Forgiveness for self and others Positive talk Expressing feelings with words Listening to feelings Addressing behaviour with concern, patience, and love Kindness to self The ability to move on from hurt or offence Addressing the behaviour, not punishing the person
Studies have shown that uninterrupted moments with your children for at least five two--minute intervals during the day will set the foundation for the importance of connection, conversation, and security. These moments will give children the ability to respect others as well as have a sense of self-respect. Have conversations with
your kids about the importance of racial diversity, respect for differences, and caring for others. Talk to them about why it is important to protect our minds and our hearts. Talk to them about fun things too. Laugh and be engaged with your child â&#x20AC;&#x201C; at different moments in the day. We all know that parenting is no easy feat, but certainly the most rewarding and honourable role we will ever play. With awareness of your positive influence and behaviour, being emotionally present, and connecting with your little one, parents display and create a safe and nurturing environment for children to grow, love, and enjoy the most incredible years of their life. Your children never want you to be upset, stressed, or uneasy and/or be the contributor to your stress. Use moments to model behaviour that you would like your kids to aspire to, especially when life gets hard. The aim is to strive for progress in our daily lives, never perfection.
....it all starts here
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Making screen time
positive IN OUR NEW REALITY, AN INCREASE IN OUR CHILDREN’S SCREEN TIME HAS BEEN INEVITABLE. EXPERIENCED PRE-PRIMARY TEACHER DAPHENEY KROET TALKS TO TEIXEIRA MURRAY ABOUT HOW TO USE SCREEN TIME TO YOUR CHILD’S BENEFIT. The world has changed so much in the last few months and many countries have experienced some form of lockdown. Lockdown has brought many changes to the way parents work and, of course, how children are being educated. Screen time has now become part of the daily routine for both adults and children alike, with the use of computers, tablets, and smartphones becoming an integral part of staying connected and informed. For the longest time experts have warned parents against prolonged screen time for their little ones, encouraging more outdoor play, but now that social distancing is vital, many schools have moved to a virtual space, and so time spent in front of screens has grown significantly. Early Childhood Development specialist, Dapheney Kroet, admits that screen time is something she has also previously warned parents
to keep to a bare minimum, but with the need for education to continue through remote learning, screen time has become a necessary tool. “Unfortunately screen time has received a bad rap, and we certainly don’t want parents to leave their children to sit in front of a television for hours on end, watching empty programmes that do not enrich the child. But screen time can be a tool to help enhance the child’s learning journey and so we are learning to look at screen time with new eyes.”
Screen time must be carefully planned and selected. Kroet explains that screen time must be carefully planned and selected to ensure that programmes are educational and will stimulate and
encourage movement as well. In this way, it can offer many benefits.
“I want to stress that structured screen time, monitored by parents, is extremely important, but still needs to be within limits. I still would say for children under two years old there is very little benefit, other than playing a nursery rhyme here and there. Screen time for children older than two should also only be in short bursts of 10 to 15 minutes at a time. Overall, children should have a limit of three hours of total screen time within a day during the lockdown period; ideally it should be no more than an hour a day.” Using screen time as an educational tool can be fun and interesting, provided that content is carefully selected for the appropriate age group. “The more I researched and looked for educational programmes, games,
and other content, the more I have come to see there is so much available to parents. Various platforms offer content geared towards improving mathematical and language skills. Often these programmes will look at numbers, shapes, colours and the alphabet through fun and vibrant songs, allowing the child to engage and memorise various concepts. Other programmes have stories with morals and lessons attached to them: programmes such as Barney, Vegetables, Peppa Pig and Paw Patrol spring to mind. “For the older child, there are programmes like Story Bots, and Odd Squad, that focus on the STEM subjects. You will note that most of these are only 15-20 minutes long per programme, which is ideal.” The best forms of screen time are when content is interactive, fun, interesting, and appropriate for the various age groups.
A world of content and resources
“We live in a digital, technology-driven world and we should try to embrace it and use it to our advantage. I have first-hand experience during the lockdown of the benefits of technology, as it allowed me to connect with my students remotely. I found so many useful resources and content that I really believe can help children over the age of two to learn valuable skills such as learning to focus, apply problem-solving skills, and even executive functioning development. “All of this is greatly enhanced when both adult and child engage in the content together, as it encourages dialogue and social interaction, and can be a great way to bond.” The use of smartphones, tablets and computers for gaming has
also never been a favourable topic among parents, but more and more development in educational games has made the use of these devices something to consider, as both a form of entertainment and education.
The best forms of screen time are when content is interactive, fun, interesting, and appropriate. “Games on devices can help to develop interactive learning as well as promote fine motor skills, and handeye co-ordination. However, gaming should be monitored and also only be allowed in short bursts at a time, with as much parent involvement as possible. All forms of screen time must be thoughtful and should never replace real face-to-face interaction with other people, namely parents or guardians.”
Fostering good habits
To foster good screen time habits, Kroet advises that parents should always model positive behaviour when it comes to technology. “As a teacher, I always encourage parents to structure their screen time in a way that teaches children that limits are important and that there should be a time for real connections away from devices. We need to make time for play and real conversations. “Perhaps make it a rule that there’s no screen time from supper time, where family time instead focuses on having a meal together, and talking about the events of the day. Building puzzles and playing family board games or spending time doing crafts and reading together will all be
beneficial for the development of the child, but also the family unit.” During the COVID-19 pandemic, we are unable to visit family and friends, and many children are still being schooled at home. This means there is a gap in social human connection, but we can certainly use screen time in the form of video calls as a way to connect. “The wonderful thing about technology is that it is ever-evolving and these days video calls form such an integral part in staying connected with family and friends. Encourage your children to use devices as a healthy way of communicating. “Connecting via video calls has the added benefit of being used as a learning tool as well. Movement classes such as dance classes can be hosted via video calls and can help to bridge the distance between the teacher and the child. The possibilities are endless.”
Educational programmes for your child Netflix Odd Squad Ask the Story Bots Brainchild
(for children from 5 years old)
The Magic School Bus Super Monsters Octonauts
Disney Junior on DSTV (Channel 309) Mickey Mouse Clubhouse
Apps Monster Maths
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Keeping your toddler
LEARNING while at home
KEEPING YOUR TODDLER OCCUPIED UNDER LOCKDOWN CONDITIONS CAN BE TOUGH, ESPECIALLY WHEN THEY CAN’T UNDERSTAND WHY THEY’RE STUCK AT HOME. EDUCATOR KERRY MCARTHUR HAS SOME SUGGESTIONS TO HELP YOU NEGOTIATE THE DIFFICULT DAYS.
We have all gone through a major upheaval over this period whether we work or go to school. And it’s even tougher for our children, who may not fully understand why they can’t go to school or play with their friends. While we are concerned about the safety aspects of keeping our children at home, it is equally important that we consider their social and educational needs as well. Social interaction is a little more difficult, but you can at least help to meet their educational needs while at home.
Young children learn best by seeing and experiencing the topic, which is why in class we will always use concrete apparatus such as blocks, counters and pictures. At home this will be a little more difficult and timeconsuming, and it eventually gets frustrating using the same things over and over again, so this is where virtual tours are helpful. There are a host of websites that you can access to watch videos of actual experiences, such as: www.explore.org – This website introduces many different experiences centred around nature and the world around us, from deep in the ocean, to brown bears in Alaska, all the way to African animals around a waterhole. Some of these videos are live feeds, with a few of them being recorded and edited to be an immersive experience. www.aquariumpacific.org – This website has pre-planned online courses for children from preschool to 12 years old. You can watch sea turtles, crafty critters or play ‘I spy’ around the aquarium. www.lazoo.org – Complete “draw alongs with Brian Kesinger” or do a virtual field trip around the zoo,
learning about all the different animals or join a live feed on https://www.facebook.com/ cincinnatizoo/ . There are many other virtual zoo tours that you can take.
Concepts and continued learning
The first thing you need to remember is you are not the teacher. You are not there to replace school, but you are also the best resource your child has for learning. There are certain concepts that you need to keep working on, and there are simple but effective ways to do it.
Counting: For babies up to 18 months the best way to reinforce counting and their numbers is to do it continuously. Every time you undress them, count the socks, count their toes, count their arms and tickle them while counting all the time. Make it fun and engaging, and they will learn it without even realising it.
You are the best resource your child has for learning. For toddlers from 18 months to three years, while rote counting (counting in order from memory) is important, it is more important that they understand what they are counting. Have them count out their puzzle pieces, the crayons or even the peas on their plate, and make it a game to see who can count the fastest. Occasionally make a purposeful mistake and
encourage your child to correct you – laugh about it and let them teach you how to do it.
Colours: Every time you pass a toy or piece of clothing tell them the colour, and let them tell you when they pass it. Also encourage them to find other objects of a similar colour: the house is an amazing toy box of colours, so let them explore. Hide a toy under or inside something and let them find it. This encourages their extended thinking and problem solving while still working on colours – make it a game.
Shapes, numbers and the alphabet: Practice makes perfect! Keep going. Sing the alphabet song and play the ‘I spy’ game using sounds of letters. Draw shapes on paper, with a whiteboard on the window, outside in the sand and in foam on a tray. There are so many ideas, and the more ideas you use, the better your child will grasp things. Remember, it is about repetition without boredom.
Some practical ideas:
Use bottle caps or bread tabs for something simple, otherwise use toy animals, dinosaurs, etc. You can then use the activity not just for counting, but for colours and sorting as well. Draw a circle with a number in it, repeat to your child what the number is, and encourage them to select the correct number of objects and place them in the circle. Do the same with other numbers. Write numbers in the bottom of cupcake holders – similar to the
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circle activity, but use smaller objects (watch the size with smaller babies). You can do the same activity with colour sorting. Play ten-pin bowling: collect empty plastic bottles and write numbers onto the corresponding number of objects e.g. five. Also draw five circles. Have your child throw a ball at the bottles and then place them back up in order. You can use the same activity for adding simple numbers together (based on what they knocked over) or the bottles for putting objects inside to correspond to the number. Use cupcake holders and write a letter of the alphabet in the bottom, and print out pictures of simple words that can then be matched to the letter. Stick to the simple sound e.g., ‘a’ and ‘apple’ or ‘c’ and ‘cat’. Wrap a small square box (tissue box) in paper and on each side write a letter of the alphabet – focus
on the letters you have selected for the week. On a separate piece of paper, draw or print the pictures that start with the same letter. As they roll the “dice” they will then cross off the picture that matches the letter, and as they get older you can use words instead of drawing pictures.
All of us are frustrated. We are around the same people everyday and our lives have been turned upside down. This is just as apparent in your young child, who doesn’t understand why they are feeling the way they do and they definitely don’t understand how to deal with it. “We implicitly identify, demonstrate, and explain why our toddlers shouldn’t act a certain way by discussing and showing them the correct way,” says Jaime Gleicher, LMSW, a behavioural therapist at Harstein Psychological Services Center in New York City.
It’s also important to acknowledge how they are feeling and help them develop their emotions over this period. Allow them to be angry, but teach them how to express this positively and avoid the triggers. Allow them to be sad: hold them, love them. Finally, allow them to be scared: reassure them and provide a safe place.
Remember, it is about repetition without boredom. Above virtual tours, colours, numbers or shapes, the most important thing you can teach your child is love and respect for themselves and for others in the home. Build self-confidence and communication through everything you do, and remember, you are not the teacher, but you are equally important in their learning.
Acknowledge how they are feeling and help them develop their emotions.
Whooo goes there? SPEND SOME QUALITY TIME WITH YOUR LITTLE ONE MAKING THIS CUTE OWL.
Step 1 You will need a toilet paper roll, orange or yellow paper for the beak and feet as well as different coloured paper for the owl’s feathers. You will also need paint the same colour as the paper you will be using for the owl’s feathers, a glue stick, paintbrush, scissors and googly eyes.
Step 4: Paint your toilet paper roll then fold the tops and bottoms of the toilet paper roll to create the shape and ears for the owl.
Step 2: Use the yellow paper and cut out two halfhearts (with the bottom cut off) for the feet and a smaller diamond shape that you will fold in half to create the beak.
Step 5: Using a glue stick, stick the feet onto the bottom of your owl first, as you want them to be underneath the feathers. Gradually build up the feathers from the bottom, layering the feathers on top of each other.
Step 3: Use a ruler to create rounded feathers that are 2.5cm long and 2cm wide. Measuring this out makes the cutting process a lot easier. If you have an older toddler you can let them use safety scissors to help cut the feathers.
Step 6: Stick the beak onto the bottom of the owl’s face, close to the feather,s and then add the two larger wings on each side with a glue stick. Lastly, stick the eyes onto your owl. Now you have a gorgeous little woodland creature.
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Switching from parent mode
to teacher mode
OUR NEW REALITY MEANS THAT PARENTS HAVE HAD TO SWITCH THEIR ROLES FROM PARENTS TO TEACHERS – WITH VERY LITTLE WARNING. FORMER TEACHER TEIXEIRA MURRAY GIVES PARENTS SOME TIPS ON HOW PARENTS CAN BE TEACHERS TO THEIR CHILDREN AT HOME. Who would have thought we would find ourselves smack bang in the middle of a pandemic? It’s like we are living in a movie: raising and growing our families in the midst of an ever-present lurking virus, a virus that has literally brought the world to a standstill, and we are yet to see the aftermath.
The wacky world of homeschooling And if that’s not scary enough, parents around the globe were forced into the wacky world of homeschooling their
This is the scariest thing that has ever happened to me as a person, a mother, and a teacher.
own children, or at least supervising said children through some sort of inhouse education. Oy vey! I cannot stress enough that this is the scariest thing that has ever happened to me as a person, a mother, and a teacher. Yes, I am a teacher, and so everyone addresses me with an “I am sure you are cruising through this” tone in their voices, but let me tell you, homeschooling truly shows me those proverbial “flames”. Let me explain. I am a qualified teacher, but a high school teacher (in case that helps my case), and have
very limited knowledge as to the learning patterns of six-year-olds and three-year-olds, other than the fact that I am their mother. As an educator, I am all about the business of serious teaching, like literature reviews and crafting designer essays and reflecting on topics that shape the world. I am certainly not about the business of cutting shapes, colouring in numbers and repeating myself 10 000 times a day. I remember the first day of homeschooling my son (my twin in
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looks and now more obvious than before, my twin in personality and character). I was on the phone with his teacher practically the whole day, at times laughing at the absurdity of my teaching my own offspring, but mostly crying because I didn’t feel like I knew what I was doing.
I’m helping them to learn, but I am still their mother. The sheer frustration of first trying to convince my children that I was “authorised” and qualified to teach them the given content, and second, the random outbursts of dismay displayed by both the homeschool teacher and student, is something I thought I wouldn’t experience. Have I mentioned that I am an actual teacher?
Lessons from a teacher-mom One thing I have learnt in my now 10-week stint of being a homeschool mother to my children is that I cannot separate the two – being a mother and a teacher – as well as I thought I could. In a way, I don’t think that is a bad thing. My children have amazing teachers who are trained to deal with the many moods, emotions, and temperaments of the children assigned to them, and I want them to know that I am still their mother. I’m helping them to learn, but I am still their mother. My children are different – as most children are – and as a mother you have the instincts to pick up on their physical and emotional needs. I have learnt that my son is a sensitive learner and though smart, he is a child with a wandering mind, and
when I expect him to sit still and learn (when he isn’t ready to do so) the task becomes futile and cumbersome. My daughter, on the other hand, is only three years old and wakes up in the morning with joy for yet another school day (she inherited this from me). School with her is much easier because she wants to learn. But even that statement is flawed. Learning is not just about finishing worksheets and reciting the alphabet. I have come to learn first-hand that it has everything to do with the overall well-being of the child, and for my son, this meant his emotional needs needed some attention too. The pandemic has prohibited my son from his social interactions with his classmates, teachers, and friends, and this was and is a pretty big deal for him. I remember one Friday, after about five weeks of getting into a good holistic routine with the children, my son sat at this school desk and just cried. He was crying because he was tired. Tired of only having me as his teacher and only having his sister as his classmate. He was tired of not having his friends play with him at break and tired of not going to his science and swimming lessons.
Learning is not just about finishing worksheets and reciting the alphabet. It broke my heart and of course, we stopped conventional schooling for the day and focused on my son’s emotional well-being by doing something different, calling his friends, and even going for a drive around the block. That day I
learnt that learning is far more than academic performance but rather starts with emotional well-being. We got through the 10 weeks of home-schooling because I didn’t switch off my mom mode when teaching my children, I remained a mother. I concluded that I am only a facilitator in their learning and that their teachers still know best the outcomes they desire for their age group. My job is to ensure my children are emotionally sound to receive the content and then we patiently work through it, identifying opportunities of learning, even if it means the learning day stretches out longer than planned. It also made me realise how important it is for parents, even me, to constantly reinforce the lessons and content taught at school because these little brains require so much repetition at times. Now I search for resources to help them cement the content they have been taught.
A good routine is everything Having created a routine that includes screen time, playtime, quiet time, and learning time, helps immensely. The little ones feel safe in knowing what to expect from the day and they can absorb more. A solid routine is also something I planned with my children, asking them, what they want to do when (within limits) and what they feel they need to do in a day. It helps them feel involved and they begin to take ownership of their school week. They also love ticking items off their to-do list, which gives them a sense of accomplishment. Remember, no two days are the same, but having a good mindset and a positive attitude certainly helps to make the tasks easier. Also, my very important note is to remember your primary role as a parent trumps everything.
Unlocking lockdown LOCKDOWN DOESN’T HAVE TO BE A DISASTER – WITH SOME CLEVER THINKING YOU CAN TURN IT AROUND, WRITES DAD KRESAN MUNIAN. What do you think of when you hear the word “lockdown”? If we’re alike, you’d probably start to mentally forecast the emotional stresses that would result from this season, followed by a plethora of thoughts about plans to not fall behind at work, while being at home learning to compromise on which partner’s meeting is more important and scheduling chores with baby duties. I’ve realised that life under lockdown can become an absolute nightmare if we choose to travel the massfollowed route that highlights all of its negatives.
I can have fun in everything I do. But what could this season bring if we took a detour to believe otherwise? What if this lockdown is our season to become better at what we do, and the greatest dads in history?
If you’re interested in taking the detour, here are a couple of significant keys picked up during my detoured journey. Hopefully they can help to unlock the lockdown for you, so you can make the most of work life, home life and dad life.
Family first, work second The most important key I’ve picked up is “Family first, work second.” As a dad, I quickly learned how important it is to reflect that with my lockdown crew. In a world filled with career-driven worker bees, lockdown has taught me that anyone can be dismissed at their work roles. I have realised how much more vital my role as dad and husband are instead of ‘employee of the month’. In applying this key I’ve realised that people pay for productivity in the workplace instead of hours spent behind the work desk. With that said, there are always new innovative apps available that help us schedule, track and accomplish our work goals in record time (allowing for more
available hours in the day for the real MVPs [Most Valuable Players]).
Take regular breaks After almost experiencing mental burnout, I stumbled across the next key, which is “Take strategic breaks”. Taking a break doesn’t necessarily mean doing absolutely nothing – it’s about getting away from your usual workspace to draw in inspiration, motivation, and energy to get back in the zone and meet those deadlines. Personally, the most rewarding breaks have been taking 15-20 minutes to hang out with my son or enjoy a good cup of coffee (between work shifts) with my wife, or even to check off something small that needed to be done at home like taking out the trash or watering the garden. This is a great way to break down big objectives into manageable tasks, as well as maintain laser focus with strategic breaks. You may even score a few brownie points by tending to the minor needs on the family front. Talk about a win-win!
M ILES TO NES
Finding the fun In the repetitive, isolated daily cycle of life in lockdown, the next key presented itself: “Being normal is boring”. It reminded me that I can have fun in everything I do – all I need to do is look for the fun in the mundane! This key unlocked the thought that, “This season is not something we have to endure, it’s something we can enjoy.” From personal application of this, I realise that playtime with my son can be a great way to get my blood pumping – by jumping, squatting and crawling around. Nappy changes turn into entertaining dance routines and mini concerts, meals in front of the TV turn into lounge picnics and festive table sit-downs, bathtimes turn into water wars and the bonus is that bedtime becomes much easier with a fun, eventful day.
A kid’s point of view The last thing I picked up in my journey wasn’t really a key – it was more like a pair of kid’s sunglasses that allowed me to view lockdown through my child’s perspective. For our kids, life under lockdown can be one of the most significant moments in their life. This is where they find out how their dad responds under pressure and reacts when happy or sad. These are the moments they observe and learn from, that shape them, and show them their own value and importance. This lockdown provides us with a great opportunity to bond with our kids and explore what drives them. It’s our best opportunity to love them and instil good values in them that secure their identity and empower them to go out into our new world confidently, valuing others and
creating the better future we dreamed of. In lockdown, moms and dads can actually change the world!
Taking a break doesn’t necessarily mean doing absolutely nothing. We’re only a few months into this lockdown, so I’m sure we will encounter new struggles, but with that also many more keys, to help us win on all fronts. The detour less travelled may feel longer as the world goes one way, but keep walking. It’s not a race to the end of lockdown, it’s about enjoying the journey along the way and improving the way we navigate it.
The best way to stick to your budget
is to start one
COVID-19 SEEMS TO HAVE PLAYED HAVOC WITH OUR EATING HABITS – AND OUR GROCERY BILLS. YASHMITHA PADAYACHEE HAS TIPS FOR HOW TO KEEP BOTH ON THE STRAIGHT AND NARROW. Has everyone noticed that the ‘lockdown grocery bill’ made it seem like you were running a B&B for a rugby team in your home? We all knew exactly what Old Mother Hubbard was feeling when she went to the cupboard. It seemed like you just spent a small fortune on a trolley full of food, but somehow there aren’t enough ingredients to make a single decent meal. Let’s talk ‘trying to maintain a healthy meal plan in the time of COVID.’ Ensuring your family has a wellbalanced healthy diet is a battle for the ages, with a new set of hurdles
at every turn, from advice and recommended power foods that are constantly changing, not to mention the ever-changing palate preferences of various family members, to the fluctuating costs and availability of products. Healthy eating is not an easy battle, but one worth pursuing. With current economic, transport and travel constraints, getting your family what they need might prove even trickier, yet the importance of your family’s immune levels and wellbeing should be a top priority. Let’s look at a few points to keep in mind that will help keep your grocery
budget on a healthy track during these trying times.
Wake up and smell the routine
Your family should have a good eating routine and it is important to stick to it. The occasional late breakfast turned brunch causes no harm, but drastically altered meal-times and additional snack times will wreak havoc on your pocket and health. This has been exceptionally difficult to do in the current circumstances but is a must in order to control both expenditure and food intake. On the same note, what we eat
Keep calm, make a meal plan, and write out a shopping list.
M ILE S TO NES
for each meal is equally important. Breakfast should be nutritious and filling. Starting the day off with a nutritional porridge or fruits should be the norm. If the kids are not keen on fruit, there are some amazing DIY food art tips available online.
Healthy eating is not an easy battle, but one worth pursuing. Again, there’s no denying the ‘treat factor’ in a good old fry-up breakfast or breakfast for dinner, but let’s not make a habit of it.
Waste not, want not
First and foremost, don’t fall into the bulk buying trap. While bulk buying can – in many cases – save you a pretty penny, be smart about which products you choose to buy in bulk. Long life and non-perishables are a definite thumbs up, whereas fresh produce and spoilable items shouldn’t necessarily be bought in bulk. We’ve all seen the memes about kids eating four bananas in one day, then finding them absolutely revolting the next. And while, yes you can make some more pandemic banana bread, this won’t be applicable to all your fresh produce. If you want to purchase a few extra items to limit store trips, investigate how to best store each item to increase their shelf life. Similarly, if you want to bulk buy treat items, you need to be sure that you and your family have the resolve to not eat a months’ worth of chips and biscuits in a week. Nothing looks more tempting than a bale of cheese and onion Cheetos in the middle of the night. The ‘waste not’ theme extends to prepared and cooked meals as well.
While cooking a little extra is a big thumbs up for that one night when we just eat leftovers, we don’t want to end up discarding uneaten food due to spoilage. A general shopping tip is to not do grocery shopping while hungry, because all sorts of unnecessary things find their way into the trolley.
A goal without a plan is just a wish
If you want to feed your family healthy meals on a budget, you need a meal plan. If deciding what to eat a week in advance is not for you, at the very least decide on what meals will be in the weekly pool. The exact meal you choose can be decided on the day, or the night before. If you shop weekly, you’d need a rough idea of meals for the week, and if you shop monthly, you would need the same for the month. This sounds simple enough, but can be very easy to lose track of, especially under more stressful shopping conditions. For example, if you cook a mince dish once a week and shop monthly, you should ideally have four packs of mince in your trolley. Keep calm, make a meal plan, and write out a shopping list according to that meal plan. As a bonus, many stores have their own personalised loyalty cards,
that give you access to certain instore deals. These coupons and store specials are vital in helping with your budget.
Some additional tips to keep in mind
Grow your own veggies. We aren’t all gifted with green thumbs, but it would be a fun family project to try and get a mini vegetable garden going. If it fails, then so be it, but if it thrives, then you’ve got salads for free forever. Besides the environmental factors against too much packaging, there is also an economical factor. Buying individually wrapped green peppers is going to hit your wallet harder than the ‘pick and weigh’ variety. Buy in season. While most of our favourite fruits and vegies are available year-round, it’s worth paying attention to which products are in or out of season, as this affects pricing. If a fruit is being sold out of season, it will cost considerably more than when they are in season.
Remember you are what you eat, so try not be fast, easy, cheap or fake.
The reminder that my orchid brings GUEST EDITOR PRIYANKA NAIDOO REFLECTS ON CHANGE AND ADAPTATION, AND THE RESILIENCE THEY CAN BRING. The day the last autumn leaves fall, I feel a gloominess set in. I hug my shoulders as I go into the house. I am drawn to the slight rays of sunlight that stream through my kitchen window and l see my orchid buds opening. The plant’s purply, pink delicate beauty restores my soul. I know that a lot of uncertainty and concern are circling the world and the media. Living through a pandemic, we cling to safety. All lives matter: all races, culture and gender. We feel fearful and uncertain when we don’t have control and the need to protect weighs heavily on a parent. These are the falling leaves, that leave us feeling vulnerable and weary. That orchid that is blooming is your family, your kids – the life around us, right now. I sit here, staring at my orchid, and can’t help but think of my two-yearold daughter: the pure love she has for me and the faith she has in me. On days where the leaves fall and the world seems unsafe and uncertain, I am reminded that her inner world, her heart, her soul and her mind are always in tune with mine. Her world will always be comforted and protected by the love, values and culture of strength, that are created in our home. I am reminded of the seasons and
the guarantee of change – I know some seasons bring cold, harsh discomfort, but I am uplifted in knowing that there is always a springtime of blooming and new life – a season of renewal that comes too. Through all seasons, as a parent, especially in the colder times, we are geared to protect and care for our children. We have the ability to give them an endless supply of sunshine and soundness, found in our love.
seasons, we are geared to protect and care for our children.
The most incredible thing I have realised from the leaves and the flowers, is that they are in tune with their current environment. They lose leaves or blossom based on so many variables: the amount of water, sunlight and care they receive. And in our homes we have the tools to grow and nurture our children to blossom with hope and adaptability for the future. Our children will be exposed to the outer world again. We have to take comfort in knowing and believing that as parents, we have the power
to build and influence our children positively. No matter what the world is going through, our home is a constant reminder of love and security. Just like little orchid buds, that take a whole season to show any sign of actual blooming again, our kids are constantly feeding off the sunlight or rain that we pour down. Having an orchid has taught me patience. I get impatient and discouraged at times, but all I can say is, be patient, be intentional and persist with care and love, and you will see new energy and beauty blossom – a revival. I tell myself every morning that it’s a new day to love and to grow my kid, to be present, and I have the power within me to create a home of calm and peace where my child will always feel safe, protected and able to thrive. As she blossoms, I will continue to water, care and guide her to build her into resilience and kindness, and with the ability to embrace and adapt to all the seasons of life that come our way.
Priyanka Naidoo is a lawyer turned transformation life coach with a special focus on new moms and parent coaching. the.awake.mama
Business Directory 4D Scan
4D Scan is a private 3D/4D ultrasound baby clinic where you can view and discuss your baby’s progress and development in a personal, relaxed environment. All scans are done by internationally qualified sonographers with years’ experience in foetal sonography and 4D ultrasound. Scans can be done at any of our facilities.
Our product range is dedicated to safe and convenient baby feeding products from new-born to toddler stages. From our Formula Milk Maker Plus (that the whole family can use), our Baby Food Maker & Steamer, the Silicone Squeeze Feeding spoon, various other feeding spoons and teethers to choose from. We strive to make it easier for parents who lead busy, fast-paced lives.
Aloe Baby & Mommy
Aloe Baby & Mommy is inspired by a first time mom, who wants to share with other mothers and parents about the amazing aloe vera products that she used during her pregnancy and postpartum. These products made pregnancy a breeze and Aloe Baby & Mommy would love to share them with you.
Baby Banz World www.banzworld.co.za
Baby & Kidz Banz World offer a range of Carewear from eye protection to sound protection to UPF50 skin protection. Noise cancelling earmuffs, hats, costumes, swim peaks and Banz sunglasses plus flexible sunglasses. EU and USA standards apply.
Button and Bear
Button & Bear baby goods are handmade mom essentials– every design from the concept, to the fabric and how the product is used, is initiated with mom and baby or toddler in mind. For moms, by moms, we’ve been there and want to make being a mother a little easier on you!
Breath-Ruach allows us to wrap your little one in Scripture. Raising a generation of warriors for Christ! Mannantech: Nutrition supplements made from real food. MannaBears contains nine fruits and vegetables and ambrotose complex.
Baby Bullet by Nutribullet www.nutribullet.co.za
Everything you need to make the most nutrient rich, fresh food for your baby. The Original Baby Bullet Complete Baby Care System is a 22-piece set that helps you make healthy, delicious, all-natural baby food that is perfect for every stage of development.
At BabyWombWorld, our mission is to make your life as a parent easier. We want to help you give your child the best possible upbringing! We select our products with the utmost care – from baby monitors to brand pumps. You will find only the highest quality and best value for money at BabyWombWorld.
Carina Baby-Peg Perego www.carinababy.com
Leaders in the baby industry since 1949, Peg Perego strives to bring you unparalleled technological innovation, durability, safety and superb performance. All Peg Perego products are made in Italy and offer the ultimate in quality and design for you and your baby. The range includes travel systems, strollers, car seats and highchairs.
ChelinoBaby brings you renowned international leading brands such as Chelino, Chelino Platinum, Cybex and CBX. Our brands offer uncompromised quality at affordable prices on a range of travel and nursery products, which are specially selected and designed to satisfy both parent and baby. Our friendly team is ready to help you select only the best.
Advanced and holistic dermatological formulations for baby and mom-to-be. A premium baby and maternity brand to ensure safe, effective and high-quality skin and health care, that stimulates a harmonious biological and therapeutic response.
ChewMe silicone clips and jewellery offers baby friendly necklaces for Mom and dummy clips for babies that act as a teether. Giving you great value for money. They are made of food grade silicone and are BPA, Phthalate, Lead and PVC free. Each product is made with loads of love.
Comfy Mummy Rocking Chairs
Comfy Mummy Rocking Chairs are custom manufactured to offer superior quality and comfort, allowing mom to sit peacefully and feed baby in a safe and secure nursery environment. Comfy Mummy chairs are designed to promote correct posture while feeding.
Elektra Health is a household name in South Africa with its wide range of humidifiers, I-Scan and multifunction thermometers, AntiMozz mosquito lamp as well as first in the world mother and baby scale, making sure that we have products to help you give that extra TLC just when it is needed.
Cotton Collective is an innovative baby linen company offering fresh designs and excellent quality at affordable prices. We are known for our unique cot linen and baby blankets. Our blankets are more than just a blanket – they become part of the family!
Crimson & Clover
Small mom-owned business that prides itself on high-quality full grain leather goods. We create items inspired by the storytellers, the dreamers, the drifters, the people whose lives are different than ours, that we can learn from. We believe in honest work and making products that will last a lifetime.
Djeco & Mombella www.newleap.co.za
Djeco’s creative team creates toys with a spirit of freedom which leaves place for pleasure and freedom. Mombella is a high-quality range of baby and toddler silicon teethers and safety products manufactured under the strictest safety and quality controls. Djeco stimulates children’s multiple intelligences by play and with entertaining teaching devices.
Doekies en Broekies
Doekies en Broekies provides natural, eco-friendly and affordable cloth nappies to keep your baby bums happy and healthy. Some of these amazing products are handmade by me. Being a cloth mommy myself, I can assure that these products are high-grade and user-friendly.
doTERRA WEllness Advocate www.dwtformulations.co.za
The doTERRA mission hinges on discovering and developing the world’s highest quality therapuetic grade essential oils that are naturally safe and purely effective. As wellness advocates we are passionate about educating you on using the world’s best essential oils safely to improve your family health.
Double Trouble is a proudly South African brand offering a variety of products. Our products are innovative, practical and niche. The only company in SA to support parents of multiples. The Double Trouble Twin pram is one of a kind and a favourite amongst parents of multiples.
A market leader, Dream Furniture has grown enormously since inception 18 years ago. A leading supplier of affordable baby furniture, nursery rocking chairs, children’s furniture ranges and bespoke linen, we are proud of our attention to safety and ecofriendly ranges. Visit our Randpark Ridge showroom or online store for more.
The bespoke, premium children and baby clothing design company that fuses vibrant inspiration and stylish functionality into a unique range of garments and accessories. Proudly handmade in RSA with love from 100% natural fabrics with a touch of lace. Everli is more than a brand, it is an experience we would love to share with you. Welcome to our playground.
Nourisil™ MD Silicone Scar Gel is a transparent, self-drying silicone gel which helps to heal C-Section scars. It helps to fade, smooth and flatten scars, relieve the itching and discomfort of the skin, and reduce associated pain and redness.
Footsies & Tootsies
We specialise in first walking shoes. The transition between crawling and walking is such an exciting time but we mustn’t forget how vital it is for their little feet to have adequate support. Our first walking shoes have been perfectly designed for little walkers with soft, flexible and non-slip soles.
All our products are designed in South Africa and made with the highest quality organic fabrics and premium leathers, lovingly crafted with the finest workmanship. We source all our products both locally and internationally and pride ourselves in bringing you top quality baby and toddler goods.
We are a leading brand in affordable and modern furniture. We offer a wide range of furniture direct to the public. At Furniture Express you can expect to shop online with ease and confidence or visit our factory showroom for a personal touch. We deliver to all major cities.
Hipporoo® was born out of the “Pursuit of Hipponess” and is at the heart of everything we do. We offer accessories that ease the strain of being a parent. Being parents ourselves, we best understand the need for hassle-free quality solutions that facilitate feeding and carrying your little ones around.
Home Grown Africa
Jeankelly Baby Bags
Home Grown Africa exists to improve lives through skills development and job creation, which means we use local design, materials and manufacturing to produce quality products. Your support directly empowers individuals in our supply chain through choosing product with purpose.
Jeankelly makes quality leather baby bags, dummy clips and nappy changing accessories. Manufactured and designed locally in South Africa.
Hopscotch Baby Linen www.hopscotchlinen.co.za
Hopscotch Prides itself on quality and service. We custom make your linen to your theme/colour and cot specifications. Let us help you create the nursery of your dreams.
House of Nuts
House of Nuts specialises in caramelised nuts roasted in a copper rotating kiln. The nuts are caramelised with sugar and vanillacinnamon flavour on the stand, in major events all over the country, as well as on market, malls etc. We do cashews, macadamias, almond pecan, giant peanuts.
JeléBebé Silicone Teething Necessities – your solution for teething babies. Beautiful and stylish necklaces for memés and 3-in-1 silicone clips that are practical and soothe baby’s sore and itchy gums. Made with love, of food grade silicone – BPA, PVC and lead free. Practical, safe and soft on Bebé’s gums.
Huggies® is part of Kimberly-Clark South Africa, a subsidiary of the US-based Kimberly-Clark Corporation, which markets innovative health and hygiene products that people come into contact with every day.
Nursing wear that is both stylish and functional to feed your baby discreetly. Designs that you can wear even after weaning. Bespoke baby dresses with delicate detailing to dress your princess in something special and unique absorbent bibs that fit securely around baby’s delicate neck to ensure no exposed skin.
Designer sleepwear for the whole family. Specialising in maternity and kiddie’s sleepwear. High quality sleepwear for boys and girls from ages six months and up. It’s cute! It’s funky! It’s comfy! Come and check us out.
JOHNSON’S® brand has improved, inside and out, to deliver everything parents want. With a mission to create the gentlest baby products in the world. JOHNSON’S® has transformed to meet the needs of today’s modern parents by providing only the best for baby. Come explore the brand through our interactive stand, only at MamaMagic.
Just Chillin’ is an exclusive locally produced baby clothing brand. We put high emphasis on the quality of the products we offer and strive to produce unique products with attention to detail. With a strong belief in local job creation, we are designed and manufactured in Cape Town.
Kiddy-Calm Bath Salts www.therific.com
Kiddy-Calm, an epic adventure of warm fuzzy bath, bubbling with benefits for the whole family. Magnesium Sulphate carries benefits for all ages and all skin types. Our award-winning Bubble Bath Salts are sure to become a daily-use item in your household.
Kids’ Stuff – Books and Puzzles www.kids-stuffonline.co.za
A fantastic selection of children’s books and educational products ranging from infant to young child. Board books, touch and feel, sound books, bath and cloth books, sticker and colour activity, readers and reference books. Also, quality wooden educational puzzles and educational toys. We have a great selection of Afrikaanse kinderboeke!
Love To Dream
Kontras kids are proud import and distributors for Comotomo Southern Africa. Comotomo bottles are made of soft, hygienic silicone that closely mimics natural breastfeeding. No more bottle rejection! A beautiful product shouldn’t just look good but should also elegantly enhance your experience. We think our bottles do just that!
Global award winning Swaddle UpsTM, Transition BagsTMand Sleep SuitsTM for newborn to toddler. These multi-award winning zip-up swaddles allows your baby to sleep in a more natural ARMS UP™ position. Our three stage sleep solutions gives your baby More Sleep FROM DAY ONETM.
Leah Hawker Photography and Breastfeeding 101 www.LeahHawker.co.za
Breastfeeding 101 is an informative and exciting book about the pains and pleasures of breastfeeding. 101 women from around the world share their personal stories. Photographer and author Leah Hawker is Cape Town based and also specialises in working with mothers on maternity, newborn, birth and family photography.
We provide natural support for healthy breast milk production! Our herbal lactation supplements were formulated with carefully chosen ingredients to boost your milk supply. The products are 100% natural and organic while being sugar, additive and preservative free. Every capsule is brimming with only pure and potent milk-enhancing ingredients.
Life Baby South Africa brings you a new world of infant aquatics, building skills, swim safety, flotation and massage in an innovative, safe and sterile environment for your little one. Life baby welcomes babies from two days to 16 months. Our clean wellness centre strives to better the health and wellness in all our babies through the power of the water. We believe in early water exposure to develop water skills and strengthen our babies in their first 1 001 days of life. Prevention is better than cure!
Liquid Lemon products are imported and secured locally in order to give you the best and most exclusive baby products in and around the world at unbelievable prices. Our Brands are EZPZ the original silicone placemat, unbuckle me, magic mesh, manillow pillow + mini manillow and the play pad.
Little Lads and Ladies
Luli and Co
LuLi&Co is a local mommy-owned and run business handmaking unique boutique-style nappies for babies as well as Ladycloth aka “reusable cloth sanitary pads” and other reusable accessories for babies, women and teens. We strive to provide a quality handcrafted product made locally with love in Kleinmond, Overberg, Western Cape.
Lulla Doll is a sleep solution for babies and toddlers, helping them fall asleep easier and stay asleep longer. Based on scientific research, Lulla replicates a parent’s presence through its soft, natural cotton that absorbs a parent’s scent and sounds of breathing and heartbeat that play continuously for 12 hours.
Malonè Living are distributors who pride ourselves in bringing in unique and bespoke baby and kids’ products to the South African market such as Lollipop Baby Camera, a smart Wi-Fi baby monitor which will be showcased and sold at the expos. Watch this space for more products to join our range.
Mama Noo Maternity Wear www.mamanoo.com
Mama Noo specialises in maternity underwear. We provide and manufacture elegant, comfortable and functional nursing bras and maternity panties for pregnancy and beyond. We offer valuable guidance in sizing during the different stages of one’s maternity journey.
MamaMoo Breast Pump www.mamamoo.co.za
MamaMoo Breast Pumps are revolutionising the way moms pump milk. It is pain-free, hands-free and very affordable, and requires zero effort from you to work. Visit us to show you how you can get the same or even more milk for a 10th of the price of a traditional pump.
We are mommies who love pretty things and being creative. Our flagship products are custom-made baby mobiles and play gyms, and we also make pregnancy and baby milestone cards, milestone blankets, teether chains, nursery decor and birth announcement onesies. We love keeping up with new trends and are constantly evolving.
Lots 4 Tots
Lots 4 Tots is the exclusive distributor of luxury baby and kiddies’ products, including thick foam-cushioned play mats, bath safety seats and rings, bean bag chairs, knee pads, dinner plates, place mats and more! Our main focus is to bring you excellent quality baby products that have never been seen before in South Africa!
Mamita & Me
At the heart of Mamita & Me stands creativity, love and passion for handmade design, proudly made in Cape Town. The high quality, 100% cotton baby essentials, accessories and toys are all sewn by experienced seamstresses. All items are designed and made with a focus on functionality, baby safety and durability.
Marcus & Marcus
Award-winning International brand Marcus & Marcus offers a variety of innovative products to make meal and snack time fun, interactive and convenient. The range is made of 100% food-grade silicone ensuring safe and sustainable products that contribute to your child’s wellbeing. Our newly released oral range, Happiteeth, is now available too! Let Marcus and his friends take you on an adventure!
Matchstick Monkey is a soft textured teether that helps soothe your little one’s pain at the source with fun, flexible teethers that get tetthing gel to the right places.. Put your mind at ease knowing your little one’s teething toys are safe and hygienic with BioCote® Antimicrobial Technology.
Monkeybum is a high-end baby and kids clothing brand. We offer clothing that is alternative in style. Our clothing is made for movement and is stylish and comfortable. Our clothing is made in South Africa from 100% cotton. We support sustainable and ethical fashion and women empowerment. Shop online.
Masikrafts delivers a unique blend of stylish and superior quality, hand crafted goods for children in their infancy. From nursing pillows, bibs, stuffed toys to ribbons and car seat canopies, their products are the result of research and attention detail.
Add some Moo Cachoo Magic to little one’s childhood! We make practical and beautiful products for mothers to use with their infants – like our car chair covers, slings, breastfeeding snoods as well as décor products that will grow with your baby, like our original hanging tent canopy!
For 30 years, Maxi-Cosi has been the world’s most trusted provider of child car seats. Our award-winning car seats offer safe, practical and comfortable protection while still looking great. Millions of parents across the globe trust Maxi-Cosi’s expertise in child mobility. MaxiCosi is the global leader in innovative safety technology, dedicated to constantly improving.
Designed by parents just like you, for babies just like yours. Mühelos makes travelling effortless. Our high end 3-in-1 travel systems and booster seat will meet your baby’s needs, your design and functionality demands as well as your pocket.
Mustela®, the skincare expert for babies, children and mothers for more than 60 years, offers innovative products with the highest safety standards, guaranteed safe to use from birth. Mustela¹s natural and dry skin products contain an average of 95% natural ingredients. Mustela cares about the environment. Packaging is recyclable, box materials come from sustainable forestry and foaming formulas are biodegradable.
Milk Lactation Products
Milk Lactation Products offers the only anti-colic lactation bars on the market. They help ensure a strong, nutritious milk supply from birth without negative effects on little tummies. They are caffeine, lactose, dairy, cane sugar and preservative free to avoid any food sensitivity reactions, the perfect solution for breastfeeding mothers.
We deliver childcare products that not only incorporate celebrated Dutch design, but that also radiate a chic, cosmopolitan air. We are passionate about design, art, children and travel, we are continually seeking to create highly desirable and beautiful products that truly evoke emotion and facilitate family life.
The stylish Mimi Luxe is elegantly designed with simple and refined lines: it’s the perfect urban travel system that grows with your little one’s changing needs. It’s easy to use and versatile, for the cost savvy parent who won’t compromise on quality or safety.
Mini Magnolia is the ultimate South African online baby store for babies, toddlers and moms! We’ve carefully handpicked our products to bring you quality products at an affordable price. Our flagship product is the 2cm thick playmat with various options to choose from. It’s the thickest playmat in the country!
My beginning makes the most beautiful customised baby nests and braided bumpers to match your nursery. For the extra personal touch, we have Cubbies, which are personalised teddies embroidered with your baby’s birth details. We also make embroidery and other linen needs. Feeding pillow slipcovers are great for a change of cover and to match your nursery. Teething bananas and milestone stickers are also available.
Ameda, Internationally the #1 trusted brand of breast pumps. Visit our store to learn more about breastfeeding and how to express. We have quality breast pumps, accessories, free fitting and show specials. With FDA approved closed system, our pumps are hygienic, portable, quiet, comfortable and easy to use.
My Little Peanut
My Little Peanut sell a wide range of muslin swaddles, blankets, sleep sacks/suits, towels and multipurpose covers. We proudly have the largest range of swaddle prints in South Africa. We focus on bamboo material and making our products affordable to South African families.
Healthier alternative snacks and treats both for toddlers and parents on the go have never tasted this good!
NUMI® is a 100% locally produced exclusive baby and toddler brand. NUMI® strives to bring a sense of success and calm into the home through simple, modern, elegant designs. Produced using the highest quality, sustainable and safe materials, NUMI® is the perfect compliment for your parenting journey!
National Sea Rescue Institute www.nsri.org.za
The NSRI is a charity staffed by unpaid volunteers on call 24/7 throughout the year. We aim to prevent drowning through education, preventative measures and reactive rescue. We visit schools around the country, teaching children water safety, what to do in an emergency and basic CPR.
Netcells – Umbilical Cord Stem Cell Banking www.nextbio.co.za
Netcells is a private, internationally accredited South African stem cell bank that is Discovery’s preferred provider, giving you the ultimate reassurance since 2005. Netcells is the brand you can trust with your baby’s future health.
Oh-Lief Natural Products www.ohlief.com
South Africa’s Favourite baby products - 100% Certified Natural & Organic baby products.Natural. Organic. Cruelty-Free. Skincare for the whole family. Made using olive oil and beeswax. Handmade with love. Cape Town. Oh-lief relies on the soothing benefits of nature which is why we rely on nature’s simplicity as the inspiration behind our formulations.
Noola Baby provides parents with affordable, high quality travel systems that include everything you need for getting out and about with your little one. We focus on key decision-making factors, such as comfort, convenience and style.
Nunuki’s high quality skincare for little humans was developed by a passionate mom and a group of skincare experts. All products have been dermatologically tested and approved. Nunuki adds fun to parenthood, as each product is represented by a cute little Nunuki character, that teaches our little ones life lessons.
Noonoo Pie specialises in making stretch wrap carriers from a super soft fabric with a unique four way stretch, making them the most comfortable carrier for you and for baby – 100% SA made! We also make a range of other mom and baby essentials such as the everyday shawl, car seat cover and bamboo muslins. The “tuck me tight” swaddle is our latest addition!
Old Mutual is a leading financial services provider. We offer a wide range of financial solutions to encourage the wellbeing of families. Our partnership with Purity enables us to give parents advice, tips and tools, helping families to become money smart and reach for their financial dreams.
Pegasus Homeopathics www.pegasuskits.com
NoseFrida & Windi
www.windi.co.za ; www.nosefrida.co.za
NoseFrida® and Windi® are two Swedish products that solves two common problems parents have with their babies ‘ blocked noses and gassy tummies! They are safe, effective and hygienic, recommended from birth, and endorsed by parents and medical professionals worldwide. No more blocked noses or gassy tummies!
The Pegasus Bluebox all-in-one natural medicine kit contains 28 homeopathic remedies to treat the whole family, including pets. It travels well and is easy-to-use, and treats colic, coughs and colds, teething, diarrhoea, ‘snotty nose syndrome’, injuries, sinusitis, etc. It’s safe in pregnancy, breastfeeding and newborn infants: every home should have one!
Rocking Chair Studio
Pampers is committed to the happy and healthy development of babies and understands that sleep is an integral component in baby development. The new Pampers Premium Care is the first and only diaper with new absorbent channels that evenly distribute wetness for up to 12 hours. Learn more about the new Pampers Pants.
Rocking Chair Studio, based in Johannesburg, manufactures quality yet affordable rocking chairs that are not only aimed to help release endorphins in the brain which can improve mood and reduce stress and pain, but also bring comfort to both mom and baby.
For more than 60 years, Pigeon, the trusted name in mother and baby care products, has offered a wide range of superior products, extensively researched to meet all your baby’s growing needs. Dedicated to the benefits of breastmilk, as a breastfeeding support company, Pigeon offers products that enhance your breastfeeding journey and beyond.
Ruby Melon’s products are designed to stimulate baby’s first development milestones. Including sensory play-stations, toys, and much more, our changing range is the industry leader, providing the safest, most comfortable banding environment for baby. Hand-crafted with love in Cape Town – it’s pretty meets practical. #littlethingsthatmatter.
Sili-Chic creates beautiful hand-crafted silicone teething accessories, from personalised dummy clips to gorgeous teething necklaces for mommy to wear. We have a wide range of designs to suit all your needs. Our personalised dummy clips are made right there and then and are made exactly how mommy wants it.
Born from humble beginnings and the desire to create beautiful, long-lasting leather shoes for babies and children, the story of PittaPatta is one of love and imagination. Owners Konrad and Marjolein believe in dreaming big, working hard, having faith, and doing it all for the love of family.
World’s first portable baby formula maker! No more night trips to the kitchen. Keeps formula dry and warms water to a perfect 37°C while you sleep. Just twist and shake to mix the formula with the water – ready in seconds! Great for daytime feeding and on the go too.
Pre-school educational programme from parents with babies from pre-birth to seven years of age to grow and develop their children’s milestones.
Mom and Bab is the owners of SA’s first and only training pants, now being branded as Smarty Pants. Used for potty training, swimming and nappy covers. Benefits include: perfect for transitioning from diapers to underwear. Great for occasional night-time accidents. Great alternative to swimming diapers. Save money. Faster learning.
PregOmega plus is a premium, unique 3-in-1 combination supplement and every pack contains: multivitamin and mineral tablets ensuring optimal nutrition during pregnancy, Omega 3 fish oil capsules containing the highest quality oils, rich in DHA and EPA, and calcium combination tablets that meet the high demands of calcium during pregnancy.
Stumped Wooden Toys www.duettkidsfurniture.com
Stumped Wooden Toys & Accessories was founded by a family run business in Knysna, Western Cape, with the aim to bring back timber crafts into homes across South Africa. We offer an ever-expanding children’s range of DIY kits to build at home as well as kid’s wooden toys.
Snoozy Baby Rocking Chairs
Tobbie & Co
A Snoozy Baby nursery rocking chair is designed specifically for moms, to make feeding time happy and relaxed. Our chairs have arm rests at just the right height, the back rest is generously padded with memory foam and a gentle rocking mechanism to calm and soothe mom and baby.
We specialise in the baby and toddler market with our exclusive range of products. Why not give your little one something special, which will not only put a smile on their face, but on yours too.
Although travel is tough to do right now, Trunki is ready to assist you in getting your travel needs sorted today, with some incredible offers. We believe travel is about new experiences, creating memories and making every journey just as enjoyable as the destination. Ingenious design (and a little bit of fairy dust) creates products for every journey.
Tulips & Tea
Tanzalee & N’ Varro. Co www.tanzalee-nvarro.co.za
We aim at quality with affordability. Because everyone deserves that best. Come and visit – you won’t be disappointed or leave empty handed.
The Harvest Table
Since inception in 2018, The Harvest Table has been creating pure, wholesome products packaged earth-consciously to change the lives of our customers positively by educating them and helping them to make better food choices daily.
The Tulips & Tea baby wrap carriers and genuine leather dummy clips have been an industry favourite, because of their superior quality and unique leather touch. Experience the benefits baby wearing has to offer. Browse through our dummy clips and other unique leather accessories!
Whippety-y is a baby boys clothing and accessories brand. We create unique high-quality items that are made with little boys in mind because #boysmattertoo.
WoolVreign Premium Wool Fleeces will ensure your new-born, baby or toddler sleeps and plays in luxury and comfort all year round, day or night. Our wool fleeces regulate baby’s body temperature, winter and summer with 100% natural wool. All wool fleeces are naturally antibacterial and ideal for little ones struggling with allergies. Moms and babies love WoolVreign.
Zinplex Junior www.zinplex.co.za
The Spring Collection www.intledesign.co.za
Beautiful handcrafted fabric toys that hang above the cot or change station, which are suspended with a spring and bounce up and down whenever baby touches them. Keeps baby amused and mother happy, makes the nursery look beautiful. Every baby should have at least one.
Explore the unknown or stroll along familiar paths. Go jogging. Go cycling. Go hiking. Enjoy your time together and share your passions with your kids. A Thule stroller, child bike seat or child carrier backpack is perfect for you and your child to get around comfortably. Anywhere, anytime, any season.
Zinplex has been a trusted brand for the whole family for over 20 years, ranging from bestselling immune boosters like the Zinplex Junior Syrup, recommended by many pediatricians and skincare products like our Zinplex Junior Baby Bum Cream, Baby Bum Spray and Baby Soap Bar.
We have everything to suit baby’s needs
we know you care
Being a first time mom or dad can be very overwhelming, but here at Baby City, we can help with any and every need!
Kwazulu-Natal Springfield Umhlanga Westville PMB Hillcrest Ballito Free State Bloemfontein
031 263 0196/7/8 031 566 1893/920 031 265 0135/6 033 342 8801/4 031 765 4900/12/13 032 586 0580 051 430 2522/05
Limpopo Polokwane Gauteng Benmore Heathway Craighall Fourways Woodmead Kensington
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Alberton 011 907 4906 Northgate 011 794 8560 East Rand 011 823 2356 West Rand 011 475 0751/2 Vanderbijlpark 016 985 1027/8/9 Mall@Carnival 011 915 0330/4/6 Pretoria Centurion 012 653 2363 Olympus 012 991 2277
Mall@55 Kolonnade Retail Park Mpumalanga Nelspruit North West Klerksdorp Western Cape Greenpoint
012 656 0597/87 012 548 5065/2689 013 752 4360/1/2 018 462 0930/2/7 021 419 6040
Bellville 021 914 1444/5 Tokai 021 701 0804 Tableview 021 557 7532/7270 Sable Square 021 528 7570/1 Somerset West 021 851 2140 Eastern Cape Port Elizabeth 041 368 1400/2
56933 Fire Tree e&oe
BABY CITY – SOUTH AFRICA’S LEADING BABY HYPER