Page 1

RRP $7.50 (incl GST)





and babies deserve the best maternity services

Making it magical Fantasy and belief

Ho, ho, ho

Christmas treats Truth and myths of sugar

Bid for

a bargain Parents Centres online auction

Sprinkling stardust

Connecting families across the world


The magazine of Parents Centre New Zealand Inc

Parenting tips • Childbirth • Dad's Blog • Breastfeeding • Lifestyle • Family health

Voted New Zealand’s best baby store Helping babies sleep since 2006

Woolbabe sleeping bags From $


$20 OFF

Enter coupon code

KIWI20 to save on

your first order over $79 thesleepstore.co.nz

www.thesleepstore.co.nz WINNER


NZ’s best Baby carrier range

Swaddles, sleeping bags & safe sleep solutions

Newborn essentials including vaporisers

Cotton & Merino clothing from newborn up

Best Online Store & Best Baby Product Store

Join our newborn sleep support groups, go to facebook.com/SleepStore for details * On purchases $79 or more when no other discount has been applied. Go to www.thesleepstore.co.nz/content/kiwiparent for details & exclusions.

Great parents grow

great children Arm yourself with knowledge as you grow as a parent by taking part in one of the Parents Centres programmes that run nationwide. These fun and informative programmes aim to assist  parents with the various ages and stages of their children, giving them the knowledge and skill sets to be effective. The programmes are well supported by volunteers within each Centre as well as invited speakers who are knowledgeable about a wide variety of topics. As well as providing antenatal classes, Parents Centres also offer core parent education classes which include:

Conscious Parenting – Parenting with Purpose

This programme encourages parents and caregivers to consciously look at parenting styles and to consider how some are more effective than others.

Conscious Parenting – Magic Moments

Teaches how to use effective non-physical methods of discipline, and encourages parents and caregivers to build strong and caring relationships with their children, while still giving clear boundaries.

Music and Movement A fun, interactive, and developmentally stimulating programme for little ones and their parents or caregivers.

Tinies to Tots Discover more about your child as they transition to independent toddler – the course covers the introduction of play and how it stimulates learning, a focus on keeping your baby safe, introduction of new foods, prevention of tooth decay, and a whole lot more.

Return to Work

Developed to meet the specific needs of parents returning to paid employment, this programme is a practical guide covering topics like Early Childhood options, insurance and banking, breastfeeding, and tips for reviving your career. This programme is proudly supported by Porse and Au Pair Link. To find out more about the classes on offer in your area visit: www.parentscentre.org.nz

Baby and You Learn all about the exciting yet challenging early months of parenthood: feeding and sleeping, infant care and challenges, baby massage, and plenty more.

Moving and Munching This wide-ranging programme explores diverse topics like safety-proofing in the home, intellectual and social development, solids, healthy attitudes to food, and much more.

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Photo Credit: Alice Faith (Fairy), by Kirsten Walsh of Photography by Kirsten www.photographybykirsten.co.nz

Special Features


Mothers and babies deserve the best

Great parents grow great children.......................................... 1

Sharron Cole........................................................................................8–9

Ask the experts

Letters to the Editor....................................................................4–5

Kiwiparent readers test out the toys......................................10–15

Product pages.................................................................................6–7

Making it magical

A classic family favourite

Leigh Bredenkamp........................................................................16–18

My Foodbag kitchen.....................................................................28–29

Finding your food groove

Breastfeeding: moving with the times

Ben Tafau.........................................................................................20–23

Lisa Manning..................................................................................30–33

Growing givers not grabbers............................................24–26 Ho, ho, ho: truth and myths about sugar Hannah Gentile..............................................................................34–38

Parents Centre Pages.............................................................39–43 Find a Centre....................................................................................44

Keeping it real

Spotlight on Moving and Munching classes..................45

Martin Cocker.................................................................................46–49

Saying goodbye

Um, can you not Jess Bovey.......................................................................................50–51

All it takes is a few small steps Kylie Matthews..............................................................................52–53

Budgeting for baby.................................................................54–55 Protecting personal boundaries


Giving and caring Chris Ottey......................................................................................66–67

Child focused decisions: holiday access Maretta Twentymann..................................................................70–71

Emma Heaney-Yeatts..................................................................56–59

Directory pages.........................................................................72–73

Sprinkled stardust


Kerstin Kramar...............................................................................60–63

Gifting birth wisdom to others Erica Viedma...................................................................................68–69


kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Shopping Cart...........................................................................75–79 Giveaways...........................................................................................80





Making it magical We know that lying to children is simply not a good idea – it’s not respectful or kind and is likely to erode the trust our child has for us. But is it ok to tell our child that beloved mythical characters like Santa are real? Do these innocent ‘white lies’ that we tell so little faces light up with wonder and excitement cause harm?

Truth and myths of sugar Christmas has rolled around again – and whether you are the type to wrap yourself in tinsel and bake for the neighbourhood, or you’re more inclined to go into hibernation and curse at the endless Christmas music in EVERY store, when you have kids there is no escaping Christmas treats. These invariably include the demon sugar, so we explore some of the truths and myths behind this glistening white controversy.

Keeping it real The fast-changing digital landscape can paint a scary picture for parents, but as our online and offline worlds become harder to separate, the most important thing you can do is prepare your child for this convergence. Equip your child with the tools to deal with any issues before they arise and reinforce the need to respect others online – just as you would offline.

Kiwiparent – Since 1954 the magazine of Parents Centres New Zealand Inc Editor

Leigh Bredenkamp Ph (04) 472 1193 Fax (04) 938 6242 Mobile (0274) 572 821 leighb@e–borne.co.nz PO Box 28 115, Kelburn, 6150

Editorial Enquiries Ph (04) 233 2022 or (04) 472 1193 info@e–borne.co.nz

Advertising Sales

Taslim Parsons Ph (04) 233 2022 x8804 Mobile 021 1860 323 t.parsons@parentscentre.org.nz


Eden Design


Megan Kelly


Image Centre Group

Our family life is defined by traditions. They give shape and form to the year and are eagerly marked and watched for by young (grandchildren) and old (me!) alike. Whether we are celebrating a birthday, Christmas, Easter, Waitangi Day or Halloween, each occasion has something special to make it a milestone to look forward to. I love this time of year! From decorating the house and dressing the tree through to the obligatory photo with Santa, the month is peppered with things to anticipate with delight. Each ornament for the tree is exhumed from storage and exclaimed over, sometimes just for its antiquity. The favourites are not the most expensive, but the ones with memories attached to them. The lopsided star our 30-something daughter made at preschool, the Santa with the missing leg that our son ate when he was just a baby, the (slightly mouldy) dough ornaments we crafted one year – all have a special place in our family tradition. For us, this is a magical time when we unapologetically indulge in fantasy and imagination. As our children grew up, the legend of Santa became increasingly difficult to sustain – they worked out the logistical challenges of travelling the world in a single night to deliver gifts to all children in a reindeer-propelled sleigh did not stand up to close scrutiny. But they were happy to believe in the essential parts of the myth – that kindness, generosity, compassion and gratitude are worth celebrating in a world that can appear cruel and unjust. So we continue as adults to hang up Christmas stockings and write letters to Santa. Although our grandchildren leave bran muffins now as the additional focus on obesity and healthy eating struck home with our youngest, who felt that the corpulent Santa needed a healthier alternative to chocolate biscuits.


The older members of the family delight in finding new ways to continue the fantasy for the younger generation. So, in a digital age, Santa communicates directly via www.portablenorthpole.com or www.claus.com and the Google Santa Tacker lets eager children follow his progress around the world.

Opinions expressed in the magazine do not necessarily reflect the views and opinions of the publisher. Advertising in this magazine does not imply endorsement by Parents Centres. Generally material in this publication may be reproduced provided it is used for non-commercial purposes and the source is acknowledged. However, written permission must be sought from the editor. Kiwiparent is proud to support the WHO/UNICEF International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes adopted by the World Health Assembly in 1981.

On Christmas Day, we always host a large crowd for dinner – family and friends join us for the traditional ham and turkey with all the trimmings. One year I tentatively suggested that we should barbecue instead, as I spend a large part of Christmas Day in the kitchen, and naively thought it may be nice to try something different. Big mistake. You would have thought I had suggested cancelling Christmas entirely… it was made very clear to me that everyone wanted things to stay exactly the same. No change. At all. Ever.

Viv Gurrey, Chief Executive Officer, Parents Centres New Zealand Inc Ph (04) 233 2022

ISSN 1173–7638 www.kiwiparent.co.nz

This was a valuable lesson for me. In a world where we are constantly buffeted with changes, it is nice to know that family traditions are there to anchor us and give security. I wish you all a safe and peaceful festive season, filled with traditions that matter to you and the ones you love. Leigh Bredenkamp

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



letters to the editor Congratulations to the top letter winner who will receive a prize package from Nature's Sway.

Top letter

Top Letter Reading about anxiety during pregnancy brought back a wave of memories for me. My pregnancy was a nightmare because I couldn’t stop worrying about everything. I thought that I would be really happy because I totally wanted to be pregnant and my sister and friends all had no problems with their pregnancies. I didn’t want to talk to anyone about my feelings because I felt so stupid and selfish – and that just made me feel worse. I thought I was the only person who had these feelings and I was scared I was going to be a rubbish mum. After our baby was born I found it hard to relax with him and I just got more and more anxious. It made things difficult for me and my partner as well. Things came right over time and I slowly grew in confidence, but it would have been such a help if I could have talked to someone about what I was going through without feeling guilty or like I was being judged. So good on you for putting this sort of article in Kiwiparent. I hope other mums won’t go through a pregnancy like mine. Being anxious doesn’t mean you are a bad person, or that you will be a bad mum.

Name withheld

Is Santa really real? This debate has been around a long time. Famously, eight-year-old Virginia O’Hanlon wrote a letter to the editor of New York’s Sun in 1897, and the response was printed and has since become history’s most reprinted newspaper editorial, appearing in dozens of languages in books, movies, and now in Kiwiparent!


kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Top Letter prize Prana+ from Natures Sway is a non-alcoholic hand sanitiser and all-round natural cleaner, which will also help soothe and heal skin irritations or wounds, leaving you calm and refreshed. A complete first aid in a bottle! This month’s prize is the nappy bag size 50ml Little Crusader (rrp $15) and the round home 200ml Heavenly Creatures (rrp $32). Once you discover the million and one uses you will be hooked! www.naturessway.co.nz

Dear Editor: I am 8 years old. Some of my little friends say there is no Santa Claus. Papa says, ‘If you see it in The Sun it’s so.’ Please tell me the truth; is there a Santa Claus?

Virginia O’Hanlon Virginia, your little friends are wrong. They have been affected by the skepticism of a skeptical age. They do not believe except they see. They think that nothing can be which is not comprehensible by their little minds. All minds, Virginia, whether they be men’s or children’s, are little. In this great universe of ours man is a mere insect, an ant, in his intellect, as compared with the boundless world about him, as measured by the intelligence capable of grasping the whole of truth and knowledge. Yes, Virginia, there is a Santa Claus. He exists as certainly as love and generosity and devotion exist, and you know that they abound and give to your life its highest beauty and joy. Alas! How dreary would be the world if there were no Santa Claus. It would be as dreary as if there were no Virginia. There would be no childlike faith then, no poetry, no romance to make tolerable this existence. We should have no enjoyment, except in sense and sight. The eternal light with which childhood fills the world would be extinguished. Not believe in Santa Claus! You might as well not believe in fairies! You might get your papa to hire men to watch in all the chimneys on Christmas Eve to catch Santa Claus, but even if they did not see Santa Claus coming down, what would that prove? Nobody sees

Continued next page...

Yo ur Circ w o le Gr Santa Claus, but that is no sign that there is no Santa Claus. The most real things in the world are those that neither children nor men can see. Did you ever see fairies dancing on the lawn? Of course not, but that’s no proof that they are not there. Nobody can conceive or imagine all the wonders there are unseen and unseeable in the world.

Join us


Only faith, fancy, poetry, love, romance, can push aside that curtain and view and picture the supernal beauty and glory beyond. Is it all real? Ah, Virginia, in all this world there is nothing else real and abiding. No Santa Claus! Thank God! He lives, and he lives forever. A thousand years from now, Virginia, nay, ten times ten thousand years from now, he will continue to make glad the heart of childhood.

ts f e n e of b h t l a e rs a w h othe

The way we were

w it

An extract from 'The Trouble With Women' The Story of Parents Centre New Zealand By Mary Dobbie Published by Cape Catley Limited.

all Free!


The issue of pain relief in childbirth irked doctors in the 1930s. The St Helens Hospitals and the midwives they trained and sent out to be sisters-in-charge of maternity wards were cautious in the use of pain-relieving drugs, for their training strictly limited them. Doctors wanted freedom to prescribe whatever pain relief they saw fit. It was Doris Gordon’s belief that no mother should suffer in childbirth. Women expected childbirth to be painful and those who found it tolerable were pleasantly surprised. Confinement at home, common in the 1920s, gave the woman in labour companionship of family or a neighbour and the total attention and encouragement of a trained midwife who stayed at her side throughout. With a normal delivery and an experienced midwife, most women found it not too bad, and the joy of taking the newborn baby into their arms and snuggling down beside them in bed was ample reward for the pain and effort. But if things did not go well, if there were complications, the prospect was grim for the woman cut off from skilled medical interventions and the oblivion of an anaesthetic.

with parents at your stage, discuss with others, find local babysitting and coffee groups! .


a wealth of helpful resources – TIPS, INFO, PRODUCT REVIEWS, CONTACTS, NEWS & more

Interact and ask questions, give answers, share your story or knowledge with forums.

Recieve entry to prize draws, free product samples, plus relevant info emails through each stage.

Happily, childbirth for the great majority of women was, and still is, a normal event. But when birth moved out of the hands of the familiar home midwife and into the care of hospitals and unfamiliar, busy staff, it became a lonelier, more alarming affair for the woman having her first baby.

Win 0 $250 ducts



Overawed by the hospital setting with its starched bustle, left alone for long periods, uncertain of what to expect and afraid to ask, she was in no state to cope with the pain of her labour. The hospital unwittingly reinforced the pain. Women began to ask for pain relief. 

of pro w! -enter no


www.bounty.co.nz RATING EB


Look for a short extract from this iconic book in each issue of Kiwiparent. It details the struggle women and men had to persuade hearts and minds to adopt a less medicalised approach to childbirth and child-rearing in the 1950s.


line n o o ly g


subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



product information page Made4Kids Spray In Knots Out De-Tangler – Watermelon Ever spent an evening with the nit comb? Make your life easier by using Made4Kids Spray In Knots Out De-Tangler and Conditioner while you comb. Can be used on wet or dry hair, and makes the nit comb glide through the hair. With the yummy watermelon smell, the whole experience will be improved for all. Use in conjunction with Super Shiny Shampoo to keep hair clean, shiny, and knot-free! www.made4kids.co.nz

Secret Support Swimwear EziBuy’s secret support swimwear is the shapewear you can swim in! Bestseller ‘Quayside Ruched Suit’ was designed exclusively for the EziBuy woman with a comfortable and flattering fit in mind. It features a twist detail across the bustline and moulded cups, powermesh support at the tummy for control, and ruching to create the illusion of a flatter stomach and smoother hips. Available in a range of sizes, choose your favourite colour or pattern and you’re well on your way to a more confident summer. Quayside Ruched Suit RRP$99.99 (Style 77291) www.ezibuy.com

Stay close while baby’s sleeping Stay close to your little one with VTechs BM3500 Safe & Sound Pan & Tilt Baby Monitor. The camera pans up to 270 degrees and tilts as many as 124 degrees remotely via the parent unit. With helpful extras including temperature sensor, lullabies, and two-way communication, you can rest assured your little one is sleeping safe and sound. RRP: $250.00 http://auphones.vtech.com/nz/home


kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Big solutions for wee problems Summer is the time to potty train. Snazzipants (daytime training pants) are part of the Brolly Sheets family and are designed to help keep your sanity in the transition between nappies and undies. There’s a great range of colours and value packs available. www.brollysheets.co.nz

Nappy Disposal System

The ultimate train conducting experience! The E3701 High Low Railway RRP $145.00 Multi-level tracks offer many ways to create individualised railway. Decide where to place your station and decorate your railroad with trees! Graphics are screen-printed on the wood with non-toxic child-safe finishes. Layout: 900 x 670 x 100 mm. Contains 85 pieces. E3713 Forest Railway set RRP $110.00 Build a railway through a forest wonderland complete with trees, tunnels, a bridge, and wildlife! This Hape Railway set includes lengths of curved and straight track as well as tunnels, a bridge, landscape features, and a three-car train. Compatible with all wooden railways. Layout 1000 x 810 x 100mm. Contains 54 pieces. www.rdl.co.nz

Proven protection from germs & odours ^

100 times more effective at odour prevention than nappy sacks Unique twist and lock system wraps each nappy in a fresh portion of film Multi-layer film provides an exceptional barrier to lock away odour Anti-bacterial protection is present in the film and not the other components of this product.

Commercial size also available For your nearest stockist visit


0800 726 436

Mothers and babies

deserve the best

The real state of maternity

For most parents-to-be, the news that they are expecting a baby brings with it a whole range of positive emotions – excitement, wonder, aspiration and satisfaction that they are bringing new life into the world.

midwives meet – and maintain – high professional standards of education, conduct and performance, so that they deliver consistent high-quality healthcare. It is therefore of great concern to the Council when we read reports about research which appears to cast doubt on midwifery safety.

But this news also generates less-welcome emotions – anxiety, doubt and stress as they are faced with a seemingly endless number of choices and decisions to have a safe and fulfilling pregnancy that is best for both mother and baby.

We are very conscious of the impact this has on the public whose safety we have the responsibility to protect, so how do we respond? What answers might we have for women and their families?

Usually, the first decision parents-to-be have to make after their pregnancy is confirmed is selecting their Lead Maternity Carer (LMC). This is the health professional who is responsible for either providing or co-ordinating their care during pregnancy, labour and birth, and for the first six weeks after the birth. In 2016, more than 90% of expecting parents choose a midwife to be their LMC, with the remainder choosing obstetricians and gynaecologists or one of the few general practitioners who still offer maternity care. It is naturally very worrying then for expectant parents to read sensationalist headlines in the media: “Bad outcomes for new babies more likely with midwife”, “Alarming maternity research,” or “The dangers of midwives in charge” as they did recently in reports about research carried out by the University of Otago. The research suggested that there were poorer outcomes for babies in midwifery-led care. On the face of it, this appears to be a worrying report of the integrated model of primary maternity care that is unique to New Zealand. I work for the Midwifery Council, which is the Regulatory Authority which guards professional standards in midwifery. We are responsible for ensuring that


kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

What does the research actually tell us or not tell us? Expert researchers and scientists were surprised by the recent report findings, as they are not consistent with the findings from controlled trials conducted in other countries. The Cochrane Database’s systematic review of these high-quality, randomised controlled trials (a gold standard in the ranking of research evidence) showed that women consistently do better under midwifery care (they have fewer epidurals and episiotomies) and babies do just as well. The findings are also not consistent with outcome data which shows that New Zealand has low rates of adverse outcomes for both mothers and babies, and which are similar to countries such as Australia and the United Kingdom. Both the researchers themselves, and those commenting intelligently on the research, point out that retrospective observational research using this data does not establish causation, only association. Another way of looking at this is, if we came upon an accident and saw a person lying injured on the road, with a car stopped and the driver assisting the injured person, we would know there had been an accident and a person injured

– but we could NOT know that the person assisting was the one who caused the injury. None of the researchers or commentators claim that it is a low standard of midwife-led care that causes higher risk for some babies. Rather, it found that among the 85% of birthing women between 2008–2012 who had midwife-led care, there was a poorer outcome for babies. There is much discussion as to why this should be the case. Some reasons include socio-economic and deprivation factors, rurality and poor access to secondary services, poorer health status, as well as under-resourced secondary care. While it is generally agreed that the researchers tried to allow for this, it really is difficult when the characteristics of the groups (midwife or obstetrician-led) are so different. The research, however, does show us that the New Zealand system, with all its many parts, needs close examination to make sure that the right care is available to every pregnant woman anywhere in the country. It also tells us that we need carefully designed research that randomises women to the different models of care and then analyses outcomes to see what the outcomes for mothers and babies are in each model.

Are midwives safe providers of maternity care? Reputable international research shows that midwifery care is just as good, if not better, than doctor-led care for low-risk pregnancies. The researchers themselves say, “It may well be that midwife-led care is optimal within the context of well-organised systems. However, there is an urgent need to establish which aspects of those systems potentially make that care more, or less, safe.” The Council is very aware of the critical role midwives have as the main providers of primary maternity care. We know that right from the time they first register as a midwife, they must be competent and safe practitioners in the New Zealand environment. In 2009, new education standards were implemented, taking the midwifery qualification from a three-year to a four-year academic degree. Some of the changes were: „„ An increase in the total programme hours from 3600 to 4800; with an increase in minimum midwifery practice hours from 1500 to 2400. „„ Delivering the programme over 45 weeks of each year instead of 34 weeks so students can practise midwifery by accessing births throughout the year. „„ Increasing specified skills/experience that must be achieved by each graduate, e.g. facilitated births increased from 30 to 40.

The Midwifery Council website sets out details of what midwives must do in order to qualify – and then after they are registered, what a midwife must do every year to maintain her practising certificate. The days when any health professional was handed a practising certificate because they paid a fee has long gone, and midwives must demonstrate they are actively maintaining and enhancing their knowledge and skills every single year. While the Council is confident that most midwives are competent and committed to providing the best-quality care they can, sometimes things go wrong. If any concerns are expressed to the Council about a midwife’s competence, conduct or health, we have a number of steps we can – and do – take to protect the safety of the public. These can also be found on our website: www.midwiferycouncil.health.nz

So, what are we going to do as a result of this research? It would be all too easy for the Council to simply be defensive and point to the very good New Zealand maternity outcomes data and to criticise the limitations of the Otago research. But we are constantly evaluating new data to see what, if any, lessons can be learned. Although we know the standard of midwifery care in New Zealand is high, the research does pose questions about how well the wider maternity care system is working, and we need to accurately identify which aspects of it are not working as well as they should. We are committed to working with others – midwives, doctors, government departments, and researchers – to obtain high-quality evidence which can drive changes to make a safe, quality maternity system even better. I believe the mothers and babies of New Zealand deserve no less. 

Sharron Cole Sharron is the CEO and Registrar of the Midwifery Council and chairs the Board of Parents Centre NZ. She has many years’ experience working in the health regulatory and medico-legal area, particularly with Medical Misadventure/ Treatment Injury in ACC, the Medical Practitioners’ Disciplinary Tribunal and as Deputy Chair of the Midwifery Council. Sharron has served as the Deputy Chief Families Commissioner and spent three terms on the Hutt Valley District Health Board. Sharron lives in Petone, Wellington and is married with four adult children. www.midwiferycouncil.health.nz

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Ask the experts At this time of year there are plenty of options on the market when you go shopping for special toys to put under the Christmas tree. So we thought we would get in some expert reviews from parents and children to help you hunt out the best buys. Three lucky Centres were sent a selection of toys from quality suppliers – Nurture Box, The Baby Factory and Roundabout. Centre members got together and road-tested the different toys with their children – here are their reviews. best. They start to enjoy toys for which simple actions produce a clear, direct effect; like toys that light up, move, or create sound as a result of simple kicking or shaking. Brightly coloured and patterned toys that make gentle sounds make great gifts for this age group. Mobiles or images with bright, highly contrasting colours and patterns are appealing, as are mirrors.

The first year Newborns can focus best at about 20 centimetres from their faces – they are attracted to bright and vibrant colours, especially yellows and reds, and to objects with high-contrast patterns like black and white spirals. They are more attracted to objects that emit a gentle, soothing sound and move slowly than to those that are still or are too loud or extreme. Much of infants’ play involves watching and exploring their own bodies. They have a reflexive grasp, which only allows them to explore objects briefly, and at three months they begin to swipe or reach towards a dangling object to grasp it. Any object grasped is likely to be put in their mouths and to be handled with jerky, unpredictable motions, so soft, lightweight, washable, easy-to-grip objects with rounded corners are

Alexandra Districts Parents Centre review – toys supplied by Nurture Box

From around four months, babies actively engage with their environments and can track moving objects. By five months, babies can roll onto their backs and push up onto their hands and knees. They have mastered the ability to grasp and manipulate a dangling object by six months, and begin to engage in more active play by reaching, grasping, tugging, pushing, patting, shaking, and squeezing objects. They learn to sit independently, and can manipulate objects more readily, though their fine-motor coordination is still basic. As they near their first birthday, babies begin to crawl and stand with support. Soft, lightweight, rounded, and textured toys that make gentle sounds work well. Hand-held objects, like simple musical toys, should be sized so little hands can easily grasp them. Books and images with bright pictures and high-contrast images are popular, as are mirrors. Babies explore objects in many ways such as through grasping, shaking, squeezing, throwing, dropping, passing from hand to hand, and banging. Suitable toys are soft, sturdy, have rounded edges, and are easily grasped or manipulated.

10 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

The Melissa and Doug alphabet nesting and stacking blocks These are bright and colourful with fun pictures. My two-and-a-halfyear-old loved that the blocks could stack up as tall as her and enjoyed knocking them over again. She had fun trying to stack the different size blocks and get them to balance on top of each other, and I can see how it is a useful toy for developing dexterity and size awareness. She

was able to identify the colours on top of each box and in future it will be useful for learning the alphabet. The blocks have sharp corners so I would be careful around younger children but it is recommended for two years plus. A bright, fun educational toy which I would recommend.

How Do I Feel book She really liked the bright colours and the noise the front cover made. Lots of fun watching mummy make the different faces, especially the silly feeling. A great description on the back about the developmental use of this book and different activities you can do.

The Incy Wincy Spider She loves the song so the book was great. She especially loved grabbing the purple spider body when mum’s finger was in it and trying to turn the pages. A good size for her to hold and manipulate.

Classic World xylophone At first glance, I loved the look and quality of the xylophone. The colours are vibrant and the wooden construction is sturdy and excellent quality. My first thought was that the banger was not attached to the

instrument, which would give rise to it getting lost never to be found again at the bottom of a toy box. Zoe, two-and-a-half, looked at it with glee, but it entertained her for a total of five minutes, even with mum playing as well. I believe the problem was that the musical bars aren’t in key order so it can’t actually be used to play simple songs. I loved the “idea” of this, and if it was in ascending order I think it would be played with more. As it stands, it is more suited to those much younger that are beginning to grasp coordination and motor skills, and just love noise.

Soft cars with city mat My boys, two years and six months, both enjoyed playing with the cars and seeing what noise each one made, ideally the in-between age of 12–18 months would be more suited to the toy. Mr Two was happy to get each car to make noise and play with on the city map. Our baby liked the rattle and squishy cars – he couldn’t get the squeaker to work but was happy to play with this for some time. Well-constructed with the ease of packing all into the mat as a bag made it more attractive.

Introducing Nuture Box – the smarter, easier way to buy toys for your little one. Each box delivers high-quality toys chosen by child development experts – designed to educate, excite and inspire.

Continued overleaf... subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



together simple objects. Toys with cause-and-effect features – such as those with push buttons or pull cords that cause actions or sounds – are appealing to these children.

Onewa Parents Centre review – toys supplied by The Baby Factory Puzzle It is a great size for young ones to explore shapes and pick up (6+ months). For the older children it is a simple puzzle they are able to have a go with (12+ months). Then for older kids the pieces are sturdy enough to use in pretend play. This was a huge hit with all ages.

Lamb Great for young babies. Very soft and has a wooden ring. This is very handy to attach to a pram/carrier or similar when heading out so you don’t lose it. Lovely neutral colours.

Rolling rattle

One to two years Now toddlers want to explore everything, though their curiosity outweighs their judgment for predicting outcomes or foreseeing dangers. They try out a variety of basic gross- and fine-motor skills, and gain confidence as climbers. They can sing to themselves and will move their bodies to music. Since they are more mobile, they can self-select toys that were once outside their reach, and can manipulate toys that require simple twisting, turning, sliding, and cranking. Through trial and error, they continue to explore cause-andeffect relationships like dumping and filling activities, and now they enjoy a variety of actions with objects, such as pressing, pushing, pulling, rolling, pounding, beating, clanging, fitting (e.g., fitting a round peg into a round hole), stacking, marking, scribbling, carrying, and poking

their fingers into objects. They enjoy toys that do something – like making various sounds, blinking lights, and spinning wheels. At this age, they can recognise the names of familiar people, objects, pictures, and body parts. They often imitate common actions they see – such as talking on the phone, “drinking” from a cup, or cooking. Simple toys that encourage pretend play, such as dress-up materials, dolls, stuffed animals, and small vehicle toys, are a hit. These children explore skills such as balancing, jumping, and running. They can pull a toy behind them while walking, climb on and off furniture without assistance, walk up and down stairs with assistance, and may be able to kick a ball. They can pick up and manipulate much smaller objects due to their more developed pincer grasp. They like to sort items, and can now fit

12 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

A great toy for my almost 9-monthold who is just starting to reach further and shuffle his feet. It is a nice, simple toy which keeps the child interested to reach and try to catch it when it has rolled away. Also great for sibling play, rolling it back and forth.

Stacking clown Another hit with all ages. The older kids stacked it as a clown, then the younger children enjoyed pulling it apart and playing with the individual pieces. Overall, I loved the fact that these toys are gender-neutral and will be good for young babies but also grow with the child to remain a favourite.

Duck Trailer comes with an egg that little ones can pull apart and put back together which my little one seemed to like. He enjoyed pulling it apart and then putting it back into the trailer. Great for developing hand–eye coordination. He really enjoyed pulling the duck around the room and saying "quack quack". It was very sturdy – he could

Animal Puzzle Really like the thickness of the shapes – makes it really easy for little ones to pick up. Great for developing coordination when trying to put the shapes back into the puzzle and also for learning what the animals are. I liked that this one was a bit different to other sea themes I’ve seen – e.g. you don’t normally see squid. Little one enjoyed playing with this and went back to it time and time again. A good quality product that I would buy.

Puzzle Box Lots of different coloured shapes to develop colour awareness. Lid fits on easily, which is great for little hands. Good quality wooden finish. Really great for learning about different shapes but the lid kept falling off so would be better to have a hinged top. knock it about with no damage. The string was a little too short when pulling around and the trailer did tip over a fair bit. This is really well made and it seemed to keep my son entertained for a while. It’s one he kept going back to.

This would rate 5/5 if the top had been hinged. The circle was the easiest shape to put in but this was on the lid, and because the lid kept falling off Thomas got bored pretty quickly. Thomas is just under 18 months so maybe another month or so and it may have been more interesting to him.

Our EverEarth division owns an FSC Forest & uses beechwood & bamboo for all products. All paints and stains are water based, which is safer & cleaner than oil based paint & doesn’t use noxious thinner. All paints & stains are water based, which is safer & cleaner than oil based paint & doesn’t use noxious thinner.

Shapes Board Easy-to-grab shapes for little hands with lots of bright colours. A fairly intuitive puzzle so not too difficult for them to solve, however, given Thomas was just under 18 months, I would say this is one that will come into its own in another month or so. Very well made and I would buy it.

We want you to feel secure that our toys will provide a fun & safe learning experience in a way that is sustainable for our planet! Available exclusively from Continued overleaf... www.babyfactory.co.nz

Two years onwards Two-year-olds can perform social roles like mummy, daddy or baby. Pretend play becomes more elaborate as they use a variety of objects to assist their imagination. These children need the object to resemble the real item to some degree, so they might use a cloth rather than a shoe to represent a pillow. Two-year-olds can engage in true construction play. They understand that pictures can depict pretend objects, and scribbles gradually become pictures during this period. They become increasingly interested in colour variations and using simple art materials. At this age, children often want to know “why” and can start to use simple educational toys. They understand the purpose of numbers in counting objects. Toddlers have increasing control over basic gross- and fine-motor skills. Interest in gross-motor activity increases with newly found physical strength and basic coordination, and they especially enjoy balancing, climbing, running, jumping, throwing, catching, playing with sand, or pushing and pulling wheeled objects. They learn these skills separately during this period, and with each passing year they gradually combine them with other skills as coordinated movement. They can perform somersaults, and like to dance, twirl, and gallop to music. Although their control is still uncertain, they can kick and throw a ball.

They prefer more realistic toys, so colours other than bright primary colours (for example, pastels) become attractive. However, these toys do not need to be elaborately detailed.

bicycles and scooters. They are much more able to cut with scissors, paste, trace, draw, colour, and string beads than three-year-olds. They also have enough dexterity and coordination to start using a computer keyboard.

From three years, children are entering the time of peak pretend play, and like to use replica objects. A doll, for example, might be prepared to attend a birthday party with her doll friends, and they will drive in a car, eat food, and play chase or dance at the party. Realistic props, like a replica toy phone, enhance pretend play at this age. They show greater interest in structured games.

Stratford Parents Centre review – toys supplied by Roundabout We had a boy who is just under one and then girls around two years, a boy of four years and because of the school holidays, a seven-year-old girl helping them out.

These children now have the finemotor skills to take on the challenge of more complex construction play, piecing together smaller puzzle pieces, cutting, pasting, and other art activities. From four years, drama and pretend play are at their peak. Children invent complex and dramatic makebelieve scenarios. They can build upon each other’s play themes, create and coordinate several roles in an elaborate scenario, and better understand story lines. Many of these children still have difficulty understanding the differences between fantasy and reality – children of this age may believe that monsters are real.

Checkout Register

Preschoolers further master grossand fine-motor skills. They enjoy trips outside to run, climb, hop, skip, and chase. They are learning to ride

The four-year-old boy and two-yearold girl loved this. They pretended to play shop, loved taking the money in and out, plus went and got baskets

14 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

and fruit from our other play areas to play shop with. They enjoyed the eftpos and using skills to swipe. Only suggestion is firmer card for the money so it wouldn’t rip quite so easily.

Colour Flutter Butterfly

Mighty Mini Band All ages enjoyed this and it was great to have a musical instrument that wasn’t all that loud. You could still hear yourself think but the kids had a great time. Love the bright colours and it was an instant hit.

This wasn’t such a hit with our group. The girls picked it and had a look, one tried briefly but then it was put back down. Parents loved the bright colours and design and it would be great to have seen them use the magnet to move all the beads around. Interestingly, the seven-year-old girl did enjoy using it and the other kids sat and watched her play.

Busy City Play The nearly-one-year-old boy liked playing with the tiny cars and the four-year-old boy enjoyed threading them onto the rope. The girls weren’t too interested but this may just be these girls who prefer dress-ups and shop. The puzzle mat had great colours, however, was frustrating that it kept moving and coming apart when played on. The threading of the cars onto the rope was enjoyed until lifted up at one end and they all fell off, so we ended up putting a knot in one end to avoid this happening.

Geometric Shapes Knob Puzzle and the Emergency Vehicles Peg Puzzle These were a great hit for all, lovely bright colours and the girls ended up helping each other out to complete them. Puzzles are a hit at our Centre and great to see sharing and teamwork. 

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Making it


16 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Photos: Kirsten Walsh of Photography by Kirsten www.photographybykirsten.co.nz. Addison Troy (left), Alice Faith (right).

Most parents know that lying to children is simply not a good idea – it’s not respectful or kind and is likely to erode the trust our child has in us. So what about Santa, the Easter Bunny and the Tooth Fairy? Is it ok to tell our child these mythical characters are real? Are these just innocent ‘white lies’ that we tell so little faces light up with wonder and excitement as children indulge in the pleasure of make-believe? Santa is one mythical figure many children believe in with a passion. The Father Christmas story is deeply embedded in our popular culture, with Santa showing up at shopping malls, in TV shows and movies, and visiting preschools and schools to deliver gifts and treats.

to enrich the child’s life by sharing something you both enjoy. Santa embodies the whole idea of the Christmas season as the time of caring, togetherness and magic.” Smith maintains that belief in the story of Santa enables the child to develop a sense of wonder about the jolly character and develop their imagination. Most children use their imaginations all the time, even if they know the resulting creations are fiction. Using their imagination to consider the possibilities is key to problem-solving and other mental tasks down the line. “We know that Santa is not real, but the truth of Santa is the shared cultural commitment to kids, to bring happiness into children’s lives,” he says.

People who study child psychology are divided in their opinions. Psychologist David Kyle Johnson from Psychology Today writes, “I have taken a stance against the parental habit of lying to children about Santa Claus numerous times. What’s my argument? It’s a lie, it degrades your parental trustworthiness, it encourages credulity, it does not encourage imagination, and it’s equivalent to bribing your kids for good behaviour.” 

Mythical story, real values

But author and psychologist Charles Smith PhD disagrees. “Santa is a shared cultural image of benevolence and kindness,” he says. “With Santa Claus, you are trying

– Dr. Matthew Lorber, a child psychiatrist at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City.

“The Santa myth is grounded in truth – St. Nicholas was a real person. He became famous for giving gifts and money to the poor, and it’s those values that are important. It’s a real story, it’s a real value and it’s something that inspires children. That’s the spirit of Christmas, though today’s consumer culture may have drifted from that spirit a bit.”

Continued overleaf... subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Generally, lying to kids is a bad thing. But for many children, believing in Santa is a normal and healthy part of development and is unlikely to cause lasting harm. On the face of it, a man who flies around the world in a vehicle drawn by reindeer, entering people’s homes through their chimneys (not many Kiwis have chimneys that could accommodate a portly adult male these days) and delivering presents, all within the span of a single night, is improbable, to say the least. Yet the Santa myth is a long-standing and powerful tradition for many families, and may reinforce good values. Smith warns that using Santa as a disciplinary measure or threat sends mixed messages. Using the legend in this way undermines a shared enjoyment in the magic of the story. When you respect and are responsive to the child’s imagination, you build happy memories to last a lifetime. “That’s why that sense of joyfulness that surrounds Santa Claus is so important. It’s a cold, hard world for a child who can’t have that kind of pleasure.”

Facing up to facts Children stop believing in Santa at different ages. They will also try to figure it out for themselves when they start to notice that the story doesn’t quite add up. Questioning what’s real and what’s not is a normal part of mental development, so when children ask their parents whether Santa is real, parents need to decide whether the child is ready to know the truth. The best way to handle that is to ask if he or she still believes in Santa. If they do, it might be too soon to tell them. Parents should respect their child’s imagination and let them take the lead, as most children will ask pointed

18 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

questions when they are old enough to reason logically. “Be honest when children initiate a question,” Smith advises. “If a child asks if Santa is real, you might say that Santa is a wonderful idea about someone who wants to bring happiness to children." Santa may be a Christmas tradition, however, the spirit of giving to others, of family and being together – that is universal and transcends all cultures, religions and traditions.  Leigh Bredenkamp


The product most recommended by doctors for pregnancy stretch marks. Colmar Brunton, 2014

“When you look at how much your stomach is going to grow in pregnancy, you’re convinced that all that stretching has to leave its mark! But pretty much everyone I spoke to used Bio-Oil, so I began using it from about my second month, twice a day. I liked the fact that it absorbed well and left my skin looking phenomenal. Now that I know that there’s a great product for stretch marks out there I can’t keep quiet about it – I would absolutely recommend it!” Nicolette with Amy

Bio-Oil® helps reduce the possibility of pregnancy stretch marks forming by increasing the skin’s elasticity. It should be applied twice daily from the start of the second trimester. For comprehensive product information, and details of clinical trials, please visit bio-oil.com. Bio-Oil is available at pharmacies and selected retailers at the recommended selling price of $20.45 (60ml). Individual results will vary.

Finding your

food groove Not long ago, I met a friend after work for drinks and she brought me over to a table where she and her girlfriends were sitting. We did a quick round of introductions and they resumed their conversation about baking blogs and their favourite recipes of the moment. When the conversation swung round to me, I added my two cents to the discussion about my favourite peanut butter cheesecake recipe and who makes the best cheese scones in Wellington. Pre-single-parent Ben would have looked at me and wondered what the heck I was doing out of the kitchen

20 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

without my apron, when there were clearly more cupcakes to be baked. Cooking and baking had never been a strong point of mine – until it had to be when I became responsible for someone else’s eating needs. I had taken home economics classes at intermediate and high school when I was around 12–14 years old, where I learned basic kitchen skills and recipes. But growing up in a household where my mother was a great cook/baker (and dad wasn’t too bad either), those skills were rarely used and left undeveloped. After I left home, I still had no desire to learn more than the basics. This was mainly due a prolonged period of university study where my student budget required a focus on cheap, simple meals, and preferring to spend

Ever since then, I took a largely utilitarian approach to my everyday meals – as long as it had a decent amount of protein and flavour, and was reasonably healthy, I was sorted. My usual bachelor-style meals for dinners revolved around stir-fries, fried rice, or a simple meal of steak or lamb chops with broccoli and oven fries. Variety wasn’t an issue for me – as long as I was fed, I was happy. When I became a father for the first time, Esme’s mum was already a great cook and baker, so I stuck to what I knew, which was steaks, chops, and roasts, and let her handle the majority of the more varied cooking, which she enjoyed. However, once the relationship ended and I was responsible for feeding a one-year-old child nutritious, well-balanced meals, I quickly realised that I was going to have to up my game in the cooking department. So, along with all the other things I had to learn to do on my own as a single dad while working full-time, I started exploring the art of cooking and learning new recipes to feed Esme and myself that were beyond my repertoire at the time.

I also went through a pretty significant Bruce Lee phase during high school which left an impact on various areas of my life (including influencing my decision to major in philosophy at university). Lee’s approach to nutrition also influenced my Spartan-esque approach to cooking: “When you are a martial artist, you only eat what you require and don’t get carried away with foods that don’t benefit you as a martial artist.”

It was a time-consuming process of researching, trying new recipes, burning things, finding out which ones worked, which ones Esme actually liked, and which ones were the easiest/quickest to make. But through that process, my attitude towards cooking slowly but surely changed, so much that I actually found it to be an enjoyable creative outlet for my energies. This was also a significant benefit to my mental well-being in a time when I was still making sense of the whole separation/ single parenting process. Positive feedback from my friends, and of course my daughter, only further encouraged me to find new recipes and expand my recipe range to a point far beyond where I started (over 9000 percent, if my calculations are correct).

Of course, anyone who’s seen me inhale chocolate knows that this was more of a general guide for me than a hard-and-fast rule!

So if you’re starting from zero to bugger-all in the recipe department, where do you begin? Here are some of the methods I used when I began my culinary quest:

the least amount of time preparing meals so I could get back to other more interesting activities like destroying my flatmates at Tekken, training, or surfing the internet.

Continued overleaf... subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Start with what you (and your children) like! This one is a bit of a no-brainer – start by learning how to make dishes that you enjoy. This provides motivation to create something that you like to eat (and hopefully your kids will like too), and should hopefully make the learning process enjoyable as you are looking forward to the outcome (as opposed to trying a new recipe you haven’t tasted before). One of my favourite takeaway dishes is a Penang curry, and so this was one of the first dishes I tried to make. It turned out to be relatively quick and easy to make with the help of a Penang curry paste that I got from the supermarket (one of my best friends, Sanit of SpicyThai Design, tells me that most Thais don’t make their curry powders/pastes from scratch, which made me feel less guilty for using the jar!). Luckily it was mild enough for my daughter, who loved it, so that was one of the first recipes I added to my list. Being able to cook your favourite dishes is a great skill to have and a great place to start.

Family dishes This one might cross over with the first tip, but learning favourite family dishes and meals is a great way to continue family traditions and keep them going for the next generation. It’s also a good way to connect with your family in a spiritual sense at a time when you’ll need all the connection you can get, especially if you’re going through the transition into being a single parent in a situation where you are physically apart from your family. So hit up your parents, grandparents, aunties and uncles for those special recipes from your childhood (if they’ll part with them!). Just make sure you can get some decent instructions, as sometimes these dishes are so familiar to the cook that they can’t provide the finer details of the recipes, like exact measurements for ingredients, because they do it all by instinct! I learned this the hard way when my dad tried to teach me how to make sapasui (Samoan chop suey) over the phone – I ended up with this soupy mess that I had to throw out due to dad’s “eyeballing” method of working out the correct amount of ingredients not translating well over the phone!

Cultural dishes Similar to family dishes, learning recipes that are part of your culture provides you with an opportunity to explore and strengthen your connections with your heritage, which is another great way to solidify your identity in a time where you will be looking to reestablish yourself in a positive way. And of course, it’s a great opportunity to learn how to make some of those ‘soul food’ type dishes unique to your culture that satisfy like no other food can. Being of Samoan heritage, once I was parenting in 1-Player mode it was imperative that I learned how

22 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

to make sapasui and taro in coconut cream properly. I purchased the book “Mea’a Kai – The Food and Flavours of the South Pacific” which won ‘Best Cookbook in the World’ at the 2010 Gourmand World Cookbook Awards. Apart from being an amazing book that contained an array of traditional and modern Pacific recipes, it gave me the opportunity to learn more about my Samoan culture through food.

Friends’ dishes Another easy source of inspiration for new dishes (if you’ve got friends who can cook!) and motivation for furthering your culinary skills (if you’re competitive, or just like to learn more), with the added bonus that they may even be able to teach you how to make the dish themselves and give you some inside tips for getting it right. Don’t be afraid to ask for help! I’m sure your more skilled companions will be happy to help you add to your recipe repertoire.

Trawling the interweb After exhausting the low-hanging fruit of recipe research options above, I started to peruse the wild frontier of the world wide interweb by searching for ideas for new dishes. While there are a huge number of websites devoted to cooking, it can be a daunting task to work out where to begin. One of the first recipes that I tried was spaghetti and meatballs, after Esme’s mum mentioned that she had them for dinner one time. So I googled spaghetti and meatball recipes, and started comparing various recipes that were highlighted on different sites, making note of the ingredients that were similar across the different recipes, what ingredients were unique to each recipe, and which recipes looked the simplest to cook (both

for minimal time in the kitchen and affordability of ingredients). I ended up cobbling together a spaghetti and meatballs dish based on two separate recipes (I can hear chefs cringing around the world as I type), but the end result turned out pretty well, and was given the seal of approval by Esme, which meant great success! So in comparing different recipes for the same dish, how do you know which ones are the best? This is usually what I look for in a good recipe: „„ Review ratings, and number of ratings. „„ Comments (either on the reviews, or on the post if the recipe is on a blog/FaceBook post). „„ Simplicity of the recipe. „„ Whether it uses a lot of staple items that I buy regularly or that are similar to other recipes I cook (for efficiencies of food shopping). „„ Any new ingredients that are outside of my normal shopping list are either inexpensive or can be frozen/kept for later.

Looking in libraries I also combined my interweb recipe search with an ancient research method involving physical information depositories called ‘libraries’. While not as accessible as the interwebs (you actually need to get out of your house and physically relocate yourself to the library to find the books), libraries offer a slightly more focussed method of recipe hunting as you can find a range of books on a number of cooking styles and topics (such as cooking for children), which you can flick through faster than the back and forth dance between your search engine and cooking websites. Plus, most of them are free to loan, which is great when you’re on

a budget! Just try and read as much of the books that you’re going to check out as you can, so you don’t end up lugging home books you end up not using. Before I leave you to start your culinary journey, a word of warning: learning to cook can be addictive. Once you gain confidence in the kitchen, you may find it hard to stop exploring new recipes and cooking methods. Of course, you’ll likely have some constraints, such as your budget, time, and of course the preferences of your children, but I’m sure your creativity will begin to kick in to find ways around those too. One thing that encourages my constant search for new recipes is that for some reason I often find myself getting bored with my cooking (a phenomenon that doesn’t seem to occur when other people cook for me – go figure?!), so I’m always on the lookout for a new idea for a recipe, or for a way to recreate some of my favourite foods. So there you have it – six tips for increasing your recipe repertoire if you’ve found yourself in 1-Player mode, or you’re just wanting to learn a few new dishes but don’t know where to start. If you’ve got any other tips, let us know! 

Ben Tafau Ben is the author of The 1 Player Dad Strategy Guide and 1PlayerDad.com. He’s a single dad with shared care of an amazing 3-year-old daughter, and writes about his journey playing the parenting game in ‘1 Player Mode’ in Wellington.

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –





not grabbers 24 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

At this time of year, children’s thoughts naturally turn to what presents will be under the Christmas tree with their name on them. Aggressive marketing and advertising strategies are designed to lure shoppers into maxing out their credit cards in the pursuit of gifts, and children are mercilessly targeted by advertisers to covet expensive toys and designer gear. The underlying themes – you deserve it, you are worth it – propel children into an orgy of expectation.

So, how do you encourage your children to be givers not grabbers? Studies show that participating in charitable activities can help boost your children’s self-esteem, build confidence and help shape their values. Doing charitable works is enriching, valuable and self-perpetuating; children learn that helping others can be fun and makes them feel good. Children also feel positive about wealth when they see the effects of ethical giving. Philanthropy helps children learn to manage the family finances and see the benefits of the family working together to support common interests. According to a recent study by psychologists at the University of British Columbia, young children are happier to give than to receive. In the study, toddlers who were asked to give away their own treats, as well as extra treats, showed greater happiness about sharing their own possessions, suggesting that the act of personal sacrifice was emotionally rewarding. Lead author Lara Aknin, assistant professor of

Make a reverse advent calendar this December. Decorate a cardboard box with your child and put it somewhere safe at home. Each day add something to the box – it could be a food item, toiletries or a small gift. On Christmas Eve, donate the contents to a local church or foodbank. Continued overleaf... subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



The quality of community is in our hands. Who knows the outcome? The life you change may be your own. – Anonymous

psychology at Simon Fraser University in British Columbia says, “You can construe that pro-social behavior broadly to include giving time volunteering, giving money to causes or giving other resources. All of these correlate to happiness.” There is a growing trend world-wide to give charity gifts and shun the notion of rampant consumerism during the festive season. There are many options – charities like World Vision, Caritas, Tearfund, Oxfam, Save the Children and many more all run gifting programmes. The way it works is you select a gift online that appeals to you, put through the payment and you will be sent a gift card which describes the item you have bought. The gift card can then be given to the person you want to acknowledge and they will know what the money has been spent on. Some services offer an e-card option, which sends an electronic card to the person you specify. Gift start quite cheaply – $10 for a mosquito net to areas affected by malaria or dengue fever, $12 for a live chicken plus chicken feed, or $15 for sports equipment and school books to help children in South Sudan. The gifts increase in value and include more costly options like helping a woman set up in business in Pakistan ($120), building a clean water well in Azerbaijan ($135) or even funding to set up a school in Africa ($325).

26 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

A tough question around charity gifts is probably whether they’re suitable for young children. This depends on a range of factors, starting with age and how you have approached the subject with them. Not every child will feel happy about getting a card which tells them their Christmas gift is a pair of goats which has been delivered to a family in Niger! For children, combining a charity gift with an actual gift is a great option – for example, some of the World Wildlife Fund’s adoption options include a soft toy of your chosen animal, an adoption certificate and a species card with information about the creature you have adopted. Or you could buy a bundle of books from World Vision which will be sent to children in impoverished communities and put the card inside a book you have bought for your child. Many children have a keen sense of social justice and are happy to invest time or even some of their precious pocket money to help other kids at home and around the world. So another option could be to combine something the child is interested in with a gift to a charity that works in a similar area. Save the Children has a range of wish-list gifts that includes things like soccer balls and toys. At a time when children are excited by the wonder and expectation of Christmas and summer holidays, it is good to know they keep a space in their heads to remember those who are not as lucky as they are. The process of serving others will open a new world to your children – one that will continue throughout the rest of their lives. Research shows that civicminded children make greater progress at school and subsequently acquire higher levels of education than their peers. So, the entire community wins when children learn to serve others at an early age. 

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



A classic

family favourite Learn how to make the classic family favourite, Lemon Pepper Chicken. Sure to be a hit with the kiddies, this recipe is served with gold kumara mash. This tasty alternative to potato mash has sweetness which the kids will love.

28 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Lemon Pepper Chicken with Gold Kumara Mash

This recipe can be made in just 30 minutes, making it a perfect mid-week dinner. Gold kumara mash 600g gold kumara, peeled and diced 2cm ¼ cup milk 1 tablespoon butter 120–150g baby spinach leaves, roughly chopped

Lemon pepper chicken 550g skinless, boneless chicken thighs 1 tablespoon flour 1 tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning (store-bought) ½ cup white wine or chicken stock 2 cloves garlic, minced Zest and juice of ½ lemon

Veggies 400g green beans, ends trimmed 1 capsicum, core and seeds removed, sliced 1cm-thick

PREHEAT oven to 220°C. Bring a medium pot of salted water to the boil. Preheat a baking dish (if using).


Cook kumara in pot of boiling water until very soft, 15–17 minutes. Drain and mash with milk and butter until smooth. Fold through spinach and season to taste with salt and pepper.


While kumara cooks, prepare the rest of the meal. Pat chicken dry with paper towels. In a medium bowl, combine flour and lemon pepper spice. Heat a drizzle of oil in an oven-proof fry-pan on medium-high heat and lightly coat chicken in flour / lemon pepper spice mix.


Cook chicken for 1–2 minutes each side, until golden (chicken does not need to be cooked through). Set aside.


Return pan to medium-high heat, add wine/ stock and garlic to deglaze pan. Cook 1–2 minutes until wine/stock has reduced. Add browned chicken, lemon zest and juice. Simmer for 1 minute, spooning juices over chicken. Place pan into oven and bake chicken for 6–8 minutes, until cooked through.


While chicken is cooking, heat a drizzle of oil in another fry-pan on high heat. Stir-fry beans and capsicum for 3–4 minutes, tossing regularly, until beans are bright green and just tender. Season with salt and pepper.

TO SERVE: Divide gold kumara mash between plates and top with lemon pepper chicken. Serve veggies on the side and drizzle over any cooking juices. 



subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz – OF GOODNESS


Moving with the times

I am woefully behind the times. My partner John keeps telling me I need a smartphone – but I’m not sure. When I left hospital a week after giving birth in 2006 (the angels at Pukekohe Maternity Hospital wouldn’t let me go home until we could latch on by ourselves), I religiously filled out pages of A4 charts recording feeds, durations, sleep times, wet nappies etc. I did it mainly because I’m a list kinda girl but also because it reminded me which side to feed from next. When I finally let go of this tedious comfort blanket, I stopped counting how many times Maia fed and

relaxed a little. But then I became anxious and started forgetting which side we were up to. I couldn’t be doing with attaching nappy pins to clothes and in the end whipped my hair toggle out, put it on my wrist and this was enough to remind me to switch sides. Today it seems the techno trendies are keeping tabs on their routines on their smartphones or, more specifically, their apps. These apps claim to be great tools with names like Baby Tracker, iLetdown, and Breastfeeding Management. Promotional messages vary from “collect data, email your lactation consultant, track nursing” to “stimulates

a woman’s let-down” or “it’s a complete information resource for breastfeeding mothers”! According to American blogger Leila Davidson, “Now we have access to the best breastfeeding support and advice on the iPhone. Breastfeeding advice has never been closer or more convenient. These new tools let you take advantage of all the breastfeeding benefits and at the same time answer your breastfeeding questions.” Really? I’m not convinced, but then I have a healthy mistrust of some elements of the World Wide Web. Give me a hefty tome over a snazzy ebook any day.

GET SUPPORT IN MANY WAYS MEET breastfeeding mothers CONTACT a trained breastfeeding counsellor READ a book from our library BROWSE our website JOIN for Aroha magazine BUY books and leaflets DONATE to help La Leche League help more mums like you

30 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

help@lalecheleague.org.nz | facebook.com/LLLNZ



Your essential breastfeeding companion At this point I should admit that I am somewhat technologically challenged. Don’t get me wrong. I love my Apple computer and I do have an old iPhone. I know about Facebook and would be lost without Google. There are some fabulous websites; La Leche League’s, for instance. There you will find breastfeeding information and resources, you can email questions and link to our Facebook page. We’ve got over thousands of followers and discuss issues such as low milk supply, breastfeeding older children, reflux, pumping, returning to work – anything that is topical and affecting parents. For many mums and dads, the internet is a great way to gather information, stay in contact and find support quickly. I know some women want support over the phone, some via email, others by text or on Instagram, Snapchat or any other social media platform. I joined La Leche League after going to a weekly coffee group in Pukekohe. The mother-to-mother support I received, face to face, was invaluable. As a Leader I love meeting

mums and their little ones, hearing their stories and watching their breastfeeding relationships flourish. So I have to admit, tapping out encouragement on a keyboard is not my preferred means of giving breastfeeding support. However, there are women in rural communities for whom cloud technology is a godsend. Perhaps Skype technology will become a reality at LLL meetings to support those who cannot be there in person. New mothers at home alone can feel very isolated and fearful, and anything we can do to support them is good.

Breast milk is, without doubt, best for your baby’s start in life. Our range of breast pumps are designed to help you in your breastfeeding journey, making it easier and as comfortable as possible to give your baby all the goodness of your breast milk for longer. When you’re comfortable and relaxed, your milk flows easily. That’s why together with mums and baby feeding experts we have created our most comfortable breast pump yet.

The challenge for me is moving with the times: acknowledging the power and scope of digital media and never losing sight of the value of personal contact, the importance of a support network in whatever guise and promoting mother-tomother contact, which is, after all, still offering breastfeeding support in its most enduring form. Mmmm, so maybe John’s right. Perhaps I do need a new smartphone!

Lisa Manning

Available from and other leading retailers

Lisa is a former TV journalist and presenter. She is married to the British actor John Rhys-Davies with whom she has an eleven-year-old daughter, Maia. Lisa is an at-home mum and La Leche League Leader in Pukekohe.

Follow us on Facebook www.philips.co.nz/avent

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Spoiled for choice There are literally dozens of different baby trackers/feed timers/baby logs/breastfeeding management apps... Finding the time to both pump and track can be tough when you work outside of the home, have other children to take care of and have a house to run, so tracker and timer apps can help parents keep it all organised and running smoothly. Simply pop onto your local app store and you will be spoiled for choice. Just

BreastFed NZ Free This is a mobile app for breastfeeding support, information and encouragement – when and where you need it, from birth to weaning, written by an experienced midwife and lactation consultant for today’s birthing women, their families and wha-nau. The app was developed by the Midland Maternity Action Group (MMAG), a clinical network of the Midland District Health Boards in response to feedback from a 2013 study which identified a need to harness smartphones to provide new mothers with instant userfriendly advice. It contains a wealth of information for breastfeeding mothers and their families, and includes helpful Push Notifications. It also locates public baby care spaces in your area.

download a few trials or talk to other mums and see what works for you – there are plenty of free apps, plus the more upmarket ones that you will need to pay to use. There are also a few locally produced breastfeeding apps developed specifically for New Zealanders. If you are an app kind of person, you will find plenty to keep you on track, but if you would prefer to stick to tried-and-true methods, that is absolutely fine as well. Simply choose what is right for you and your baby.

BURP – Breastfeeding’s Ultimate Refuel Place Free WellSouth Primary Network and Southern District Health Board launched a free app in 2015 called the Breastfeeding’s Ultimate Refuel Place (BURP). It details a list of more than 120 public places throughout Southland and Otago that will happily host breastfeeding mums.

32 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Baby Connect $6.07 This app tracks just about everything happening with your baby – feeds, pumpings, nappy changes, and day sleeps. It will allow you to track sleep patterns, development milestones and activities on a daily basis. You can keep up with any medications you need to give your baby, as well as vaccinations and doctor/Plunket visits and you can set up reminders for any event you need to remember. It also synchronises to other devices, so other adults caring for your baby can be up-to-date on what needs to be done and when.


The online publication Healthline has announced their 2016 best breastfeeding apps, based on their user reviews, organised interfaces, and overall effectiveness in helping to make breastfeeding easier. Here are some of their favourites:


Baby Development Week by Week



This extensive database, created by the National Library of Medicine, allows you to look up your medications and supplements and get information if you need to take medications when you are breastfeeding. Always check with your doctor before changing any prescription medications.

This app provides tips and hints on feeding and will keep you informed on what milestones and activities your baby might be achieving each week. You can also store photos of your baby to mark each milestone.

Baby Nursing




Another app to help you keep track of how often your baby feeds and for how long. It can help you figure out feeding patterns and help you identify when something might be wrong. It is simple to start and stop the timer for each feeding, and if you forget to stop it at the end of a feeding, it will send you a reminder. When you input changes in your baby’s weight, height, and even head size, the app creates a growth chart. This app can also sync with multiple devices.


Breastfeeding Free This app can make tracking your baby’s feedings quick and easy, as most items having one-touch logs to make it easier to use. In addition to tracking feeds, this app also tracks nappy changes, sleep, crying, and changes in your baby’s weight. All this information can be analysed in graphs as well as in diary format.

This app connects you to resources and a community of other parents and healthcare providers to help answer your questions. If your baby is having trouble latching on, there are great videos that show you how you can help improve baby’s latch.


Pump Log Free The Pump Log keeps up with your pumping schedule. You can set reminders, time each pumping session, and also receive tips on how to boost your milk production if necessary. The information can be exported to a spreadsheet, so you can see when you are producing the most, the least, or if your production is gradually slowing down. 

making life simple for mums who express Our Express and Go range makes everything easier. By using a single pouch to EXPRESS, STORE, WARM and FEED, there’s no need to transfer breastmilk between bottles so you’ll never lose a precious drop!

tommeetippee.co.nz subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Ho, ho, ho

Christmas treats Truth and myths of sugar Christmas has rolled around again – and whether you are the type to wrap yourself in tinsel and bake for the neighbourhood, or you’re more inclined to go into hibernation and curse at the endless Christmas music in EVERY store you enter, when you have kids there is no escaping Christmas treats. Christmas treats invariably involve sugar, a word that has been demonized in recent years. In this article we are going to explore the truth and myths behind this glistening white controversy.

What is sugar? Let’s start with the simple science behind sugar. Carbohydrate is sugar. This means that anything with vegetables, fruits, or grains in it will contain sugars. Nearly every single thing we eat from a salad, to yoghurt, to our toast in the morning, contains sugar. There are over twenty different types of basic sugars, but only four are digestible in humans: fructose, glucose, galactose, and ribose. From these basic molecules you get bonded sugars, which, when broken down, become fructose, glucose and galactose. Examples include sucrose (table sugar) which is a mixture of fructose and glucose, lactose (in milk) which is glucose and galactose, and so on. In plain English – when you consume any food, for example a cup of coffee, the bonded sugars in it get broken down into their basic forms. So you go from having lactose (milk in coffee) and sucrose (table sugar) to fructose, glucose, and galactose. There is one more layer of sugars – starches. These are found in plant fibres, paper, wood etc. It takes a bit more work for your body to break these sugars down to the basic ones we talked about. This means they are particularly useful in gut and intestinal health by supporting intestinal motility and feeding good gut bacteria.

34 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

The other interesting thing to note about basic sugars is that they have different levels of sweetness. Fructose, for example, is nearly twice as sweet as glucose. This means we need less fructose to get the same taste, which means fewer calories.

Natural sugars vs processed sugars With the rise of the fear-mongering worried well, such as Food Babe, we have a new pseudo food science sweeping the globe. With it comes the illinformed concern of toxins, chemicals, and the demonizing of ingredients simply because they have a hard-to-pronounce name. Let’s take High Fructose Corn Syrup (HFCS) as an example. What is HFCS? Well, as the name suggests it is a sugar which has a higher concentration of fructose than glucose. There is absolutely no difference between the fructose and glucose found in HFCS and the fructose and glucose found in your table sugar. They are exactly the same molecules. The chemical composition of fructose and glucose found in cane crops, corn, sugar beet etc. is absolutely the same. Neither is more or less natural or healthy than the other. Whether found in nature or a factory, sugar is metabolized in exactly the same way. To the human body, the packaging something

is put inside does not matter so long as the chemical composition of the actual food is the same. Moreover, we have been ‘processing’ HFCS longer than manufacturing plants have been in production. Lone candy merchants 60–70 years ago used to create their own form of HFCS to make candy sweeter for less cost (as it took less sugar). Later, soft drink companies caught on and started doing the same, not only to keep costs down, but also to create lower-calorie drinks. Higher fructose concentration = less sugar needed = lower calories.

Whether processed in a factory or from a ‘natural’ source – a sugar is a sugar is a sugar.

Honey, apples, pears, and grapes are all ‘natural’ high-fructose sweeteners, some in higher concentrations than HFCS. In comparison, maple syrup has more glucose. Whether processed in a factory or from a ‘natural’ source – a sugar is a sugar is a sugar.

Continued overleaf... subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



What foods should we be aware of? Packaged foods and breakfast cereals are major contributors to children’s sugar intake. Recent, yetto-be-published work suggests that cereal marketed to children has a higher amount of sugar and salt compared with generic cereal. Additionally, New Zealand cereals have a higher amount of sugar when compared with exactly the same brand in Australia! Whilst we do need to be looking at the sugar content of foods, we also need to be looking at the nutrient value. Wholefoods, whilst I despise how the term is misused, do tend to be higher in nutritional value than packaged foods. You are better going for a ham, cheese, lettuce and tomato sandwich than some packaged chicken nuggets, not because of sugar levels – in fact the sandwich will be higher in sugar – but rather the vitamins, minerals, fibre, and energy you get out of the sandwich are better value. Soft drinks are something we have long been aware of as being high in calories with no nutritional value. However, there are other drinks packed full of sugar, and they are often marketed as being ‘healthy’. Juice, sports drinks, cordials, and flavoured waters can have twice the sugar content of soft drinks. There is very little value in flavoured drinks. Those which are carbonated fill up kids’ small tummies, preventing them from eating nutrient-rich foods, and all flavoured drinks contain empty calories in the way of sugar. Beyond obesity, sugary flavoured drinks are also a leading cause of tooth decay. If there is one thing you should completely avoid for your child, flavoured drinks would be it.

How much sugar a growing child needs is somewhat up for debate. Recent research suggests that a child should receive no more than 6 teaspoons (25g) of added sugar per day. Start getting familiar with food labelling. On it you will see a table with the word 'carbohydrate' on it, under that will be ‘sugar’. You want to see no more than 10g of the carbohydrate being ‘sugar’ per 100g of the food. So with Christmas around the corner what should we be feeding our children and what should they be staying clear of? Do not get lulled into this false idea that if you bake with coconut sugar (or whatever else is the latest ‘health food’) that this is somehow better for your kids. A gluten-free, sugar-free, fat-free cupcake is still a cupcake, and probably still contains a decent amount of sugar and fat in some form.

My top tips to keep kids healthy „„ Fruit and veggie platter with cheese, hummus, yoghurt, and some melted dark chocolate are a wonderfully fun snack for kids. „„ Freezing Greek yoghurt into iceblocks is a great alternative for hot summer days. „„ If you have time to do some baking you can substitute table sugar for honey or unsweetened apple puree in baking. These sweeteners are higher in fructose so you will need less to make the food taste just as sweet. Fructose also has a lower glycemic index value than other sugars, which means it potentially has less effect on blood sugar

Continued overleaf...

36 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



levels, helping to even out children’s energy levels. Remember, this does not make it a ‘healthy’ option but it does make it less calorific, and we do not always have to be eating ‘healthy’ foods. „„ Toasted open sandwiches with tomato, ham, and cheese. For a dairy-free option you can swap the cheese for hummus. „„ When the school holidays roll around and the sugary treats start to pile up in the house, make sure your kids are getting not only nutrient-rich foods, but also plenty of activity. Go to Snow Planet, the Zoo, MOTAT, the beach, walk around a park, bike around the block, kick a ball outside, build an obstacle course inside on a wet day, put on music and dance – anything that gets kids up and moving and takes the focus away from food. „„ Remember, kids can be grazers. So if you have a Christmas breakfast or lunch you are attending, chances are the quantity and quality of food your kids eat will be low. Even if you are not hungry later in the day, your kids probably will be, so make sure you have healthy food on hand to put a meal together for them on these days. Overall, a tonne of research has gone into sugar consumption (along with fat consumption and any other micro and macro nutrient you can think of). Overwhelmingly there is no issue with how a healthy body metabolises sugar. Specifically speaking, unless you have diabetes, your body does not have issues processing sugar. The rise in obesity is not due to some magical inability to properly digest fructose or any

38 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

other sugar. The rise in obesity is due to our increased consumption of calories (via increased sugar and fat intake) and our decreased physical activity levels (including increased sedentary behaviour such as watching TV). So go put up the tree, wrap yourself in tinsel, and bake cookies whilst singing jingle bells at the top of your lungs. Just maybe take your kids for a long walk to deliver all the Christmas baking to their friends. 

Hannah Gentile Hannah has a Master of Nutrition from Deakin University and a BSc Sports and Exercise. She has spent the last 10 years working in the fields of behavioural science, health, and nutrition with parents and children across New Zealand and Australia. Realising the lack of good nutritional support in infancy and toddlerhood, Hannah has dedicated her time to filling this gap. In her spare time she enjoys running and experimenting with cooking to accommodate for the variety of food intolerances in her household. www.nourishedbynature.co.nz

In this section Bid for a bargain this Christmas

Supporting parents through the early years because great parents grow great children.

Sausage sizzle philanthropants Learning from the experts Spotlight on Moving and Munching classes

Parents Centre is passionate about the importance of quality parenting and how this affects children’s futures. Each stage of child development is so very different, so we offer programmes for all stages – from your pregnancy and those memorable first newborn months right through to the developing years and onto school age. We know what it takes to be an effective parent. While it can be hugely rewarding it can also be very challenging, and we focus on giving parents the knowledge and tools they require to raise capable, confident and contributing children – and give them the best start in life. Although we are well known for our expertly facilitated Childbirth Education classes, that’s not all we do! Our renowned parent education programmes focus on children up to six years of age and include: Baby and You – advice and tips on surviving and enjoying those first months with your newborn. Moving and Munching – exploring your baby’s first foods and developmental stages. Music and Movement – stimulating music activities for your baby and toddler.

To locate a Centre near you and to find out more about programmes running in your area visit:

Tinies to Tots – your emerging adventurous toddler and coping strategies.


Parenting with Purpose – consciously focusing on how you want to parent your child. Magic Moments – strategies for discipline and communication with your child. Return to Work – advice for parents on returning to the paid workforce after taking time out to have children. Our Centres are found throughout New Zealand and also run numerous other specialised courses, primarily driven by local needs.

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Bid for a bargain this Christmas! This festive season Parents Centre New Zealand will hold their first ever online fundraising auction. The 29th of November 2016 is #GivingTuesday, a global movement where businesses and individuals come together to give back and lend their support to charitable causes. We are launching our auction on this date to kick-start our Christmas fundraising and lift awareness of the vital work Parents Centre does supporting the parents of New Zealand. Using Trade Me as our auction platform allows us to make this a nationwide fundraising event – people from all communities can support Parents Centre this Christmas.

Auction launches on Tuesday 29th November on Trade Me and closes on the evening of Monday 5th December.   Simply visit www.trademe.co.nz and search parentscentrenz Then place your bid!

We are raising funds to support our volunteer centres around New Zealand. Centres are vital hubs in their communities – they provide pregnancy, childbirth and parent education classes as well as essential support services for new parents including coffee groups, playgroups, toy libraries and music groups. 

up a real bargain! Bid for yourself or find a unique Christmas gift for a loved one. You can be confident your purchase is supporting Great Parents to Grow Great Children.

Being a new parent can be a vulnerable and isolating experience. Parents Centre is all about parents supporting parents in the community to ensure the best outcomes for children.

Every bid helps, so please support us by spreading the word. Tell all your friends and family to check out the Parents Centres online auction on Trade Me and share our posts on social media.

Some of the auction items feature on these pages, with more items being added at the time of going to print. Visit www.trademe.co.nz and search parentscentrenz to find our listings and bid. Also keep an eye on our social media throughout November for more details of the auction listings. There really is something for everyone, from travel and experiences to original art and essential baby packages.  With many items at low or no reserve you could pick

Happy Bidding!

Parents Centre New Zealand thanks the generous businesses and individuals that have donated items for our auction.

Cruise with the Interislander ferry

Two signed books from Dreamboat Books

Bid on an Interislander Travel Voucher so you can pack the car with family and friends and take a well-deserved break on a journey through the iconic Marlborough Sounds. RRP $500

A great Christmas gift. Beautiful signed books from Dreamboat Books. RRP $29.99 each or $49.99 the set. „„ The cheeky tale of ‘Baa Baa Smart Sheep’ „„ Quirky Turkey gets his revenge in ‘I Love Lemonade’


kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Take off with a Kapiti Heliworx flight Amazing original artwork from ArtHouse Gallery

Bid on a family excursion of a lifetime with a Transmission/Expressway flight for three people from Kapiti Heliworx. RRP $645.

Four stunning original paintings to bid on, created by talented artist Vincent Duncan and The Kiwi ArtHouse Gallery. Paddling 300mm x 900mm RRP $920 Fishing Day 600mm x 900mm RRP $1,800 Floating Flowers 400mm x 300mm RRP $420 Making Music 900mm x 600mm RRP $1,800

Proudly donated by

Recaro Package Young Exper t P lus Car Seat

Pr ivi a Capsule

Nappy Bag e packag valued at over! $ 1, 500

Recarof ix Base

Bid for one of these great prizes from Mediaworks „„ Jono and Ben – tickets to the live recording. „„ Newshub – Newsroom tour, meet news anchors Samantha Hayes and Mike McRoberts, and get an exclusive behind-the-scenes look at the making of news. PLUS: „„ A Day on the Decks – Spend the day with the team from The Edge, The Rock and Mai FM, including time in the Mai studio with DJ K'Lee, live on air. See how it all works, and have lunch with the crew. „„ 7 Days tickets – to the live recording „„ Edge prize pack


Get out and about this summer with outstanding packages from Baby on the Move Bid on a fantastic package from Baby on the Move.

Silvercross package

RRP $1427.90

Silvercross surf black Buggy $889.00 Silvercross Micro cherry $279.00 Silver Cross Ranger Dolls Pram Pink $150.00 Silver Cross Vintage Cot Quilt Duvet Blue $59.95 Silver cross toys rattle & squeak toy set $49.94

Recaro package Recaro Recaro Recaro Recaro Recaro

RRP $1551.95

Nappy Bag $145.00 young expert plus $599.00 Recarofix Base - Folding Foot $329.00 Cap $19.95 x2 Privia $439.00

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



The Prime Minister of Thunderpants - Josie Bidwill.

Sausage Sizzle Philanthropants Thunderpants, the quirky Wairarapa underwear company that loves to do good, has launched their latest philanthropic mission – Sausage Sizzle Philanthropants. Each month they are donating a portion of the sales from this fun underwear to a different charity or organisation. Sisters Josie and Sophie Bidwill, explain the idea: “We wanted to come up with a fun way to support more charities, and our take on the fundraiser everyone knows and loves seemed like the perfect fit. We are delighted to be working with Parents Centre for the month of October. We know how valuable and important it is for parents to be well supported at this amazing time in their lives and were keen to help an organisation that provides this support in communities around New Zealand."

communities,” says Parents Centres Funding Manager Kim Black. “Working with Thunderpants has been a great experience. They are a small family-owned and operated company. We had a great morning in October visiting Thunderpants HQ, meeting their welcoming team, and seeing some behind-the-scenes action. They were generous with their time and support throughout the month of our partnership."  Through this generous initiative there are now plenty of Thunderpants converts! www.thunderpants.co.nz

“Fundraising activities like this are not just about raising money for our services, they are a fun way for volunteers to raise Parents Centre’s profile in their


kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Kim Black presenting at the MediaWorks Foundation Hui on the set of Jono and Ben in the TV3 studio.

The team from The Block NZ 2016, winners Sam Cable

Constructing the balloon tower

and Emmett Vallender with host Shelley Ferguson.

in true The Block NZ style!

Learning from the experts It has been a busy few months kicking off the partnership with The MediaWorks Foundation. In August a team from the National Support Centre attended a hui where we met existing Foundation partners as well as new ones. We were selected alongside Women’s Refuge and Rainbow Youth, and had a fantastic morning hearing about their projects and the ways they work in their communities. We also heard from I Have a Dream Charitable Trust about how MediaWorks has been supporting them. During the morning we met members of the Foundation, MediaWorks staff, and had a special challenge with Sam Cable and Emmett Vallender, winners of The Block NZ 2016. We had to create a balloon tower as high as we could. We were doing so well, until we took it one balloon too far and over-reached our construction – a life lesson in knowing our limits perhaps!

Partnership review

to our discussions – we come away from each meeting challenged and inspired. In October we hosted Wendy and Sarah at the National Support Centre and took them to meet a local coffee group at Mana Parents Centre. Our support networks are what makes Parents Centre so unique and this was showcased perfectly by this group of mums and their six-month-old babies. Later this year we are looking forward to attending a social media workshop arranged by the TV3 marketing team and their social media agency. What a great opportunity to learn from the experts! Kim Black, Funding Manager, Parents Centre New Zealand

Since the hui we’ve started meeting with our mentor Wendy Palmer and Sarah Cotter Head of the MediaWorks Foundation. Wendy and Sarah are already bringing lots of energy and ideas

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Find a Centre near you Parents Centres span the entire country with 48 locations around New Zealand. Contact your local Centre for details of programmes and support available in your area, or go to:


North Island Auckland Region 1

Bay of Plenty





Bays North Harbour


Hibiscus Coast




Auckland Region 2

New Plymouth

Auckland East



South Taranaki


East Coast North Island


Central Hawke's Bay

Auckland Region 3

Hawke's Bay

West Auckland

Central Districts

Central Auckland

Palmerston North

East & Bays







Lower Hutt




Upper Hutt


Wellington North Wellington South

South Island Northern South Island Nelson Marlborough Greymouth Canterbury Region Ashburton Christchurch Christchurch South Timaru Oamaru Southern Region Alexandra Balclutha Dunedin Gore Invercargill Taieri


kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Each edition of Kiwiparent will profile one of Parents Centre's renowned parent education programmes.

This month the spotlight is on:

‘Moving and Munching’ ‘Your baby’s emerging exploration of the environment and discovery of first foods'. It’s an exciting time. Your baby is moving on, discovering first foods and becoming more active, and already (or soon to be) making those first attempts at crawling. As a new parent it can be difficult to know how to go about introducing solid foods and what issues you need to be aware of now that your baby is (or is getting closer to being) on the move! The ‘Munching’ focus of this programme explores the following: „„ When and how to start to introduce solids into your baby’s diet. „„ How to continue to include milk in your baby’s diet. „„ Exploring the need for changes in textures, tastes and the quantity of solids over time. „„ Ways to encourage your baby to develop healthy attitudes to food. The ‘Moving’ focus of this programme explores the following: „„ Identifying areas of your home environment that might need safety-proofing now that your baby’s mobility and manipulative skills are developing. „„ Encouraging the development of your baby’s fine- and gross-motor skills by identifying ageappropriate play and toys.

physical, cognitive (or intellectual), language and social (emotional) development. It stresses that no baby can be compared to another when it comes to development – they are all unique and all reach developmental milestones at different times. Throughout the programme you will hear from a variety of expert guest speakers, all of whom are familiar and experienced with the changes your baby is going through in this 6–12 month age group. Speakers may include a dietitian or nutritionist, a paediatric or Plunket nurse, a paediatrician or an infant feeding advisor. Parents often ask what the signs are for development stages, both in terms of movement and in terms of diet. This programme gives you the opportunity to openly discuss concerns and to learn about balancing baby’s dietary intake as well as understanding and exploring a variety of activities that you as a parent can introduce and enjoy with your little one. Developmentally the ‘Moving and Munching’ 6–12 month old stage is a fascinating one, and parents who are armed with the right information will enjoy it all the more.

Contact your local Centre through www.parentscentre.org.nz for details of programmes running in your area.

„„ Identifying areas of language, intellectual and social development that helps to stimulate your baby’s learning. Development milestones vary widely from child to child. This programme includes information on

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Keeping it real

Raising good digital citizens There is no doubt that technology has advanced radically in the last decade. The change in digital communication has transformed the way we interact as a society and has brought amazing new opportunities as well as unexpected challenges.

arise and reinforce the need to respect others online – just as you would offline.

Young people in particular adapt to new technologies quickly and easily. They use technology to explore new opportunities for social interactions, learn about their world and develop ways to express themselves online. They’re also navigating challenges that most adults have never had to deal with. Although children are often more technically savvy, they are not always emotionally or mentally mature enough to deal with the content they could unintentionally – or deliberately – be exposed to.

At first glance the new digital landscape can paint a scary picture for parents.

At first glance the new digital landscape can paint a scary picture for parents, but as our online and offline worlds become harder to separate the most important thing you can do is to prepare your child for this convergence. From a very young age, teach your child how to be safe on the internet, explore the technology they’re using and talk to them about how they’re using it. Equip your child with the tools to deal with any issues before they

46 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

While education is one part of having a positive online experience, other things like online security tools and the Harmful Digital Communications Act will help.

Often the law trails behind the fast-paced world of technology, but New Zealand is leading the way by protecting internet users with the introduction of this legislation. The Act, popularly referred to as the ‘cyber-bullying bill’, was introduced to help people take action to reduce harm that may be caused by harmful digital communications (e.g. cyber-bullying and online harassment). Under the Act, NetSafe has the responsibility to receive, assess and investigate complaints of harmful digital communications. Our expectation is that when we contact someone who has produced something

offensive they will do the right thing and take it down, but if we can’t resolve things the complainant can make an application to the District Court. The District Court will have wide powers and will take into account a range of factors before deciding on the outcome, including how people responded to the advice NetSafe provided in an attempt to resolve the complaint. Any order the District Court makes must be complied with. This is an important service for parents to know about – and also for young people to be familiar with – if they ever need help or advice with online issues. While the law offers some protection for internet users, it’s important parents do not rely on it alone to help their child adopt safe and secure online behaviours. With the holiday period upon us, many children are likely to receive new technology in their Christmas stockings, so it’s a great time to talk to your child about their lives online. It is never too early to start setting the foundation for becoming a good digital citizen. Depending on the age of your child, you might consider discussing the following ideas:

Set expectations Before your child uses the internet, talk to them about what they want to do and the type of behaviours you would like them to adopt. For example, how long they should spend online, what sites are safe and what is appropriate content to view. Discuss with your child how they can keep themselves safe and how they can protect their identity and content. Always bearing in mind the age of your child, talk to them about the potential dangers and help them understand what to do if they come across a problem.

Understand what they do online As your child matures, talk frequently with them about the kinds of sites they use and what they do – what’s involved, who’s in their network and what information do they share? Showing an interest in the things that they do not only helps to build your understanding of what their online world looks like, it creates an environment that makes

Continued overleaf... subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



it easier to have more difficult conversations about their online experiences in the future. Asking your child about the advice they would give to a friend facing online challenges often makes it easier for a child to discuss thing and helps you understand what they do and how they behave online.

Build resiliency Recognise that everyone faces challenges online. Take the time to talk about the issues you have encountered, where you got help and how you resolved the problem. Encourage young people to do the same. The goal is to ensure your child has the skills to respond to challenges in a way that gives them the best possible outcome.

If you don’t understand it, try it Simply saying you don’t get the technology or site your child talks about isn’t helpful when trying to understand the challenges that young people face online. Explore the sites and technologies your child uses to improve your knowledge, and take the time to read terms and conditions.

Set a good example How often do you use your laptop or smartphone at the dinner table? How many angry posts have you published? Take stock of the way you use technology while young people are around, and identify the kind of role models that are in their environment. If you see something that troubles you – change it.

Count to ten before you react When young people seek help with challenges online from significant adults in their lives, it’s important to understand that this was a big decision. If you overact or take away their technology, then you are less likely to be the first port of call next time something goes wrong. Focus on fixing the issues, not on punishing those involved or confiscating their devices.

NetSafe’s top five tips to help protect your child online are: 1. Keep it private: Ensure your child keeps their profile and online friends private and is careful about disclosing personal information and photos. 2. Keep it friendly: Ask your child to think about the potential consequences for themselves and other people for every video uploaded, comment posted, photo shared and email and text they send. Make sure your child knows what to do when they encounter cyber-bullying and who to report it to (NetSafe can help young people and families).

48 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

3. Keep it online: Ensure your child only ever meets online friends for the first time in the company of your or a trusted adult. 4. Keep it locked: Make sure your child’s device uses a PIN so when lost or stolen it can’t be used to auto-sign into their online profiles. Encourage your child to use strong passwords and to change them frequently – and reinforce they should not share them with anyone except you. 5. Keep it real: Reinforce strong, positive personal and societal values and behaviours online. Most importantly, help build resilience in your child in case they come across anything upsetting online. 

Martin Cocker Martin is the Chief Executive Officer of NetSafe. He can often be seen or heard in the media explaining online challenges for New Zealand internet users. His knowledge about online safety is sought out by many, both locally and overseas. In his downtime, Martin enjoys spending time with his two boys, working on his many DIY projects and playing online games.

About NetSafe Since 1998 NetSafe has provided support, education and advice to New Zealand internet users and helped resolve many online safety and security complaints. NetSafe is an independent non-profit organisation with an unrelenting focus on online safety and security. Its purpose is to enable all New Zealand internet users to confidently access digital opportunities and prevent online harm. NetSafe should be your first port of call when you or your family need help or expertise related to online safety or online security. You can contact NetSafe toll-free on 0508 638 723 or visit netsafe.org.nz for useful information and how-to guides.


about internet safety

visit netsafe.org.nz or connect with us on Facebook subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –




can you not? Back off, buzzkills Do you know one of my pet peeves online? And I said ‘one of’ as there is now quite an impressive list, even more so since becoming a parent. I don’t know quite how to explain this – or even if there is a name for this type of person – but I’ll do my best.

“Just wait until he’s five.”

I post a photo of my baby sleeping...

“Oh, just you wait until he’s walking!”

Me – “Aw, he is so cute, I love that he is such a good sleeper.”


“It’s just a phase.”

I post a photo of Baxter starting to crawl... Me – “YAY! He’s crawling.”

And the comments come in again...

“My boy was crawling ages ago.”

In come the flurry of comments... “Oh, he won’t be for long, it’ll change.”

50 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Honestly. Just shut up. Let me celebrate or be happy about a developmental milestone without you ramming

Photos credit: Anna Munro Photography

However, these ‘captain buzzkills’ are EVERYWHERE. Lurking, ready to challenge and compete with you over every detail in their (or your) lives. I generally just give them the ‘seen’ or ignore their comment altogether. Sometimes maybe it’s completely innocent, but when it comes to new parents I genuinely think you really need to watch what you say because most are already in a vulnerable state. I always try to be really careful what I say when I am having a conversation about Baxter when they ask when he did such-and-such (or whatever). I am always so anxious and aware of their feelings, so always respond with “well every kid is so different but…”. Yes, I have this blog, but I have no idea what I am doing, I am no expert. All I know is what I’ve learnt over the last year.

it down my throat that my child is going to change and – oh my – grow up! I am well aware of all of this, but you don’t need to be a buzzkill and put a damper on EVERY. SINGLE. MOMENT! Better yet, keep it to yourself. Just because your child did something, doesn’t mean mine will (or vice versa). It drives me INSANE. Seriously, like why do you even feel the need to comment like that? Does it make you feel better? Like your child is more advanced or something? I’ll call them captain buzzkills. I asked my partner, Reuben, for a suitable title, and he came back with “my dad is better than your dad”. I couldn’t help but laugh, I see where he was going, but maybe not the most descriptive title for the topic.

Before you comment next time, Ranty McRanterson, maybe don’t. If it is not going to help in any way then it’s probably not wanted. I am well aware that Baxter won’t do certain things forever and that I have been lucky in some aspects but really, keep your shit comments to yourself. 

Jess Bovey Jess is a 29-year-old mother of one based in Wellington. She manages a social media agency by day, blogs by night, and is also a professional photographer. A self-proclaimed serial over-sharer, Jess will always say it how it is. www.newmumclub.com

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



All it takes is a few small steps When the idea for Kai Carrier came to me fourand-a-half years ago, and our first pouches went on sale a little over a year later, I never imagined that the business would grow to where it has today, or that my career would take such a different path. With a background in social work, I have always had a passion to help strengthen and grow individuals and communities. I believe that by providing them with the right resources we can empower them to make personal choices for positive outcomes. This ethos is the backbone for Kai Carrier. For those of you not familiar with Kai Carrier they are reusable pouches designed to make feeding fresh homemade food on the go easy and waste-free. There are a number of pouches in the range, including 140ml (perfect for purees and smoothies), sandwich bags, ice block pouches and snack packs. Through Kai Carrier’s fundraising package we have helped Early Childhood Centres, schools and not-forprofit groups (including Parents Centres) throughout New Zealand raise over $4,000 in the past 12 months. In addition to helping them buy resources and fund projects, the package also provides centres with a forum to educate and discuss affordable healthy eating options, ways to minimise waste output and cut down on the weekly food bill. At the core of Kai Carrier is sustainability. We are blessed with some of the world’s most beautiful beaches and bush on our doorstep. Just a few weeks ago we enjoyed a family walk to Kitekite falls on Auckland’s west coast. Our girls had such an amazing time identifying all the different plant species, chasing the tui’s call as they ducked and dived through the thick bush and jumping in muddy puddles! So a key focus for me is ensuring Kai Carrier is as sustainable as possible to ensure future generations can still enjoy these pristine sites in years to come. So what exactly does sustainability mean? In recent years it appears to have become an ‘on-trend’ word,

52 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Kai Carrier has just been announced as the winner of the Solo Meo Category of the David Awards and Best Portable Product, Best Solids Feeding Product and Top 10 Most Recommended Product in 2016 OhBaby Awards.

along with ‘environmentally friendly’ and ‘eco product’. The Cambridge dictionary defines sustainability as “the idea that goods and services should be produced in ways that do not use resources that cannot be replaced, and that do not damage the environment.” To date Kai Carrier has potentially prevented 4.2 million single use pouches, packaging or cling film ending up in New Zealand landfill. Another sustainability win for Kai Carrier is that we’ve recently been certified as carbon-neutral for our business operations. This has been achieved by measuring our carbon emissions over 12 months, then offsetting these through the purchase of carbon credits. The credits purchased have been sourced from the Rarakau Rainforest Conservation Project in western Southland. We are now in the process of mapping the life cycle of our products so we are able to measure their carbon emissions from the point of manufacture until they reach your doorstep. We hope to achieve carbon-neutral status for our products within the next six months. To find out more go to www.ekos.co.nz All these factors have contributed to Kai Carrier being named as a finalist in the Community Impact category of the Sustainable Business Awards, for the second year running being held in November 2016. It is an amazing feeling being recognised for our contribution to communities throughout New Zealand, especially as it’s an area I hold so dear to my heart. There are so many benefits to living a more sustainable life and the best thing is, it only takes a few small steps and easy changes to our daily lives to have a positive impact. And by educating our children we’re helping to protect the environment for their children and future generations to come.

Here are some of our ideas to get you started on living more sustainably: „„ Set up a recycling station and encourage children to identify what can and can’t be recycled and put in the appropriate bin. Have a discussion with them about why recycling is important and see who can recycle the most over a week! „„ Collect soft plastics and recycle these via recycling stations in Auckland, Waikato and Canterbury (see http://www.recycling.kiwi.nz/soft-plastics for more details). „„ Plant a herb and vege garden and support the kids to nurture it (this can easily be done in pots if you are short of outdoor space). „„ Start composting food scraps (as these are a major source of carbon emissions). „„ Plant some pollen- and nectar-rich flowers to encourage the growth of our bee population. Sunflowers, lavender, sage and basil are bee favourites! 

Summer Smoothie Can be frozen to make into a healthy ice block treat too! Berry good! 1 cup fresh or frozen berries 1 banana ½ cup milk of your choice 1 tablespoon chia seeds (optional) Blend all ingredients together. Add more milk if mixture is too thick. Fill your Kai Carrier 140ml or ice block pouches.

Kylie Matthews Mum of two from Auckland, Kylie is the brains and driving force behind the successful company Kai Carriers.

Budgeting for a baby You’re pregnant – congratulations! You will be looking forward to making many preparations to welcome your new baby and there will be quite a few adjustments to your lives as you prepare to welcome a new arrival into your family. For working parents, having a baby will mean time off work and less income for the family, which means it’s worthwhile planning for living on a reduced budget. Sorted.org suggest expectant parents start by taking a good look at the household’s current income and expenses. Make a budget then adjust it to see what life will be like after the baby arrives and you factor in things like going down to a single income.

Taking Parental Leave If you are an employee, you or your partner are having a baby and you fulfil the minimum work requirement, then you should be eligible for unpaid parental leave. To be eligible, you need to have worked for the same employer in the previous six or 12 months before the baby’s expected due date and to have worked for an average of at least 10 hours per week during that time. If you meet the eligibility criteria, you can get a Government-funded payment known as paid parental leave or PPL. Paid parental leave is available to employees who are expecting a baby. Generally only one person will receive the parental leave payments but it’s possible for

one parent to transfer their parental leave payments to the other, as long as the other parent is also eligible for these payments. Exactly how much unpaid parental leave and what types you are eligible for will depend on whether you are the mother- or fatherto-be, how many hours you work and how long you have worked for your employer. To work out your entitlements, visit the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment website. But even if you don’t meet the eligibility criteria, you may still be entitled to parental leave if your employment agreement provides for it and you may also be entitled to PPL payments. To find out what happens to your KiwiSaver contributions visit Inland Revenue’s KiwiSaver website.

Other government help Not eligible for paid parental leave? There is also the parental tax credit. This is paid for the first eight weeks after baby arrives. You will be able to find out more about the parental tax credit on the Inland Revenue website. Working for Families is a government programme aimed at helping low- and middle-income families cope with the costs of raising children. It offers things

Got any high-interest debt like credit cards or hire purchase? Try to pay that off first – that’ll mean one less thing to worry about.

54 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

like tax credits, accommodation supplements and childcare assistance. You will be able to find out more on the Working for Families website.

Returning to work The Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment website has information about options when you return to the workforce after parental leave – including the right to request flexible working hours. Parents Centre New Zealand also runs a return-to-work programme  for parents considering re-entering the paid workforce.

Budget for baby expenses All parents know that babies are expensive – even if you borrow and buy second-hand, the costs still mount up quickly. It makes life easier if you have some money saved up to cover all the things you’ll need to care for your baby. Parents-to-be may be tempted to spend lots of money on baby gear – after all, it looks amazing and lots of marketing dollars have gone into tempting you to buy. But before hitting the shops, talk to other parents that you trust about the things that you really need to have before baby arrives. It is possible to save a lot by buying second-hand goods, shopping around for the best deals and buying some things, like nappies, in bulk. Let friends and family know what’s on your wish list. Most will welcome the opportunity to clear out their unused baby gear or offer to help out with a gift you really need. Safety equipment is really important, so make sure things like car seats are fully compliant with all current regulations. Plunket is phasing out its car seat rental service, but other

organisations like Parents Centres and Baby on the Move are stepping up to offer car seat rentals. The BNZ has a baby budget calculator  that can help work out the costs that come along with a baby.

Childcare and home help Childcare will be one of the biggest expenses when parents return to work after having a baby. This is when supportive family members are invaluable! There are plenty options – au pairs, in-home carers, crèches and daycare centres to name a few. Costs and conditions vary widely among childcare centres. Shop around for one that ticks all the right boxes – the next issue of Kiwiparent will contain an article on things to consider when looking for an early childhood centre.

Dad... Dad, are both you AND Mum protected by AA Life?

Work and Income’s childcare subsidy helps cover the cost of childcare for children under five. In the case of a multiple birth or a domestic emergency, you may be able to get help with the cost of things like laundry, housework and cooking, as well as childcare. Find out more about financial assistance when having a baby  on the Work and Income website.

Insuring the future If you have not seen a need for life insurance before having baby, now is the time to consider it. With a baby on the way, what if you or your partner were to die? How would your family cope financially? If you do have life insurance, it’s a good idea to check the policy  before the baby is born. You may need to increase it to take new costs into account. Other types of insurance may also be worth considering, such as income protection for working parents. However, this can be

expensive so consider the type of cover that will work for you. Now is also the time to make a will or update your existing one, as you will have to nominate a legal guardian for your child in the event of your death. If your personal or financial situation is more complex – if you own our own business or are recently separated – you can explore other types of asset protection such as a family trust. 

Find out more www.cab.org.nz www.sorted.org.nz www.workandincome.govt.nz www.mbie.govt.nz www.ird.govt.nz www.babybudget.begood withmoney.co.nz www.parentscentre.org.nz

Yes, son. With our Life Cover we’ve taken care of our family’s future. That’s ewesome for us all.

Four years in a row Protect the ones you love with simple, affordable life and living insurances. Talk to us today. Call us anytime

0800 225 433

Visit us online


See us at your nearest

AA Centre

AA Life policies are underwritten by Asteron Life Limited. Terms, conditions and exclusions apply.

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Protecting personal boundaries Surviving the summer season 56 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

With the summer holidays approaching I thought I’d share some of the fantastic insights and lessons about self-care that I gather from working with my clients. These may help to shine some light on adjusting to, and managing, the change in season and the extra pressures that come with it. This article looks at the types of stressors you may encounter during the summer season, the signs of having pushed beyond your limits, the effects of not protecting your boundaries, and how to practise protecting your limits.

Stressors you may encounter A change in season often involves a change to situational factors like routine, finances, and our surroundings. Sometimes change happens easily and naturally, but sometimes we might find that stressors affect the way we feel, think, and behave. Some of the stressors you may encounter over summer include: „„ Extra social stress – people staying with you or staying with others, increased social engagements. „„ Physical demands – over-eating or not prioritising eating, less time to exercise, pressures to cook and clean. „„ Performance pressure – thinking that you have to perform to a particular standard, for example

when hosting guests or when buying presents. „„ Emotional insecurity – change in routine, or having no routine can upset your feelings and your family’s sense of security. „„ Situational changes – increase in hustle and bustle around you, and difficulty taking a break from it. Financial demands may cause some stress too.

Signs that you may have pushed beyond your limits You may notice changes in how you think, feel, and behave towards yourself and others. If the change is significant for you, and is starting to affect you and others, then this may be an indicator that your limits have been pushed a bit far. You may be experiencing signs of stress or distress, such as: „„ Increased irritability i.e. more snappy at others. „„ Feeling like you want to escape or hide from others. „„ Sore muscles, especially in the shoulder and upper back areas.

Continued overleaf... subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



„„ Feeling resentful towards others and envious of what others have. „„ Forgetting to do things that you normally prioritise, such as healthy eating and alone time. „„ Being much quicker to jump to the worst possible conclusion. „„ Being bothered about things that wouldn’t normally bother you. „„ Feeling overwhelmed, and having a lack of motivation to do what would normally be okay to manage. „„ Feeling like you are on edge and can’t relax. „„ Feeling more afraid of what others think of you. „„ Finding it difficult to get to sleep, and/or waking in the early hours. „„ Unusually losing or gaining a lot of weight.

The effects of not protecting your own boundaries

„„ Social relationships become strained because of the way you feel about yourself and others – so you may become disconnected. „„ Physically you feel more sore, tense, unfit and unhealthy – so you may feel less inclined to exercise and socialise. „„ Emotionally you have more of the ‘less-positive’ emotions (e.g. anger, sadness) than the ‘positive’ ones (e.g. joy, hope) and this may lead to behaviours that affect your other aspects of well-being. „„ Psychologically you have more destructive thinking about yourself, others and the world (e.g. irrational fears) that lead you to behave in a way that isn’t helpful for you. „„ Situationally you may feel unsafe or insecure – you may require extra support to help you into a more safe, secure, and settled situation. On the bright side – we can use the strength of other cornerstones to positively influence the cornerstones that need it.

58 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Identifying your preferences and boundaries If you imagine your cornerstones (physical, emotional, psychological, social, and situational) as a foundation, think about what you need, or would prefer, in place in order to keep your foundation strong and complete. In terms of your physical cornerstone, you might prefer exercise daily to keep that cornerstone full and complete. For your social cornerstone you may prefer to have a few social interactions a week, and a few family days. Once you have an idea of what your preferences are to keep your cornerstones strong, you can then determine what the limit of each of the cornerstones are before they are depleted. For example your physical limit might be exercise no less than twice a week, and your social limit might be no more than two social interactions per day. You can then practise protecting these boundaries in order to keep your foundation strong. It may help to write these down, or draw your own cornerstones:


Many theories on well-being tend to refer to, in some shape or form, four or five common and interconnecting ‘cornerstones’ of well-being: physical, social, psychological and intellectual, emotional, and situational aspects. Ideally we feel equally satisfied in all of these areas, helping to achieve a sense of balance.

If one cornerstone is less strong than another, then this can throw out the balance. This can have a knock-on effect onto the other areas of wellbeing. For example if our physical well-being is down this may start to impact how we socialise, and how we feel and think about ourselves, others and the world. You may notice that:



„„ Shallow chest-breathing, as opposed to deep tummybreathing.


Practising protecting your boundaries Once you are aware of your preferences and boundaries, then you can practise protecting your boundaries. Over the summer season there may be more stressors that risk putting pressure on your limits. To protect those, you can use the following template to assert yourself and keep your cornerstones strong:

“I understand….” Show that you care about others’ perspectives, that you’re willing to negotiate, and that you care about yourself too.

“I feel…..” Express, in a constructive way, how you really feel, such as upset, resentful, worried, or fearful.

“I want….” Figure out what you want, and then work out how to make it happen, such as some extra support, some space to think, some fresh air, or some exercise. It may take a bit of practice to find the words that work for you, sometimes you may even sound like a broken record, but they’re your limits and therefore yours to protect.

The journey to independent drinking

I wish you and your family all the best for the summer season! 

Learning to drink independently starts when your baby is ready to move away from a bottle with a teat, towards a cup with a

Extra support

spout which allows more liquid

If you would like extra help over the summer season, or for the new year ahead, there are a number of options. For help around the house and with baby, a postnatal doula could be an option.


If you’re feeling distressed, then your midwife, doctor or Plunket Nurse is a good first point of call. Services, such as PND Wellington, provide online support, group support, and counselling services too – at minimal cost.

We offer a range of innovative products to help your little one develop towards independent drinking whenever they are ready.

For support or more information from PND Wellington visit www.pnd.org.nz

Emma Heaney-Yeatts Emma is the Lead Counsellor and Extension Manager at Post and Antenatal Distress Support Wellington (PND Wellington). Emma has a previous career in government policy and for the last five years a rewarding career as a post and antenatal specialist counsellor for PND Wellington. She is a qualified counsellor and full member of the New Zealand Association of Counsellors. Emma primarily uses client-centred therapy, cognitive behavioural approaches, and drawing therapy in her work with clients, and she also works with couples. Emma has two boys of her own, personal experience with postnatal distress, and a keen interest in working with mums and dads as they navigate their pregnancy and parenting journey.

www.facebook.com/Philips.Avent.NewZealand www.philips.co.nz/AVENT

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Sprinkled stardust

Fostering long distant relationships 60 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

In New Zealand, more commonly than any other country we have lived in, many children have close family members who live very far away. There are aunties, uncles, cousins, family friends and grandparents sprinkled across the globe like stars in the sky. Whereas this was not a common experience to many families some decades ago, these days we live very much in an era of international family connections.

it worthwhile. Some of these creative strategies will equally apply to shorter-distance relationships and to other close social relationships.

Families living apart is all very well and good – even exciting at times: So many different places to visit and even a place to stay! However, the excitement can quickly change to heartache when the separation involves not only adults related to each other but grandchildren in particular. We know this from our own experience. My husband and I were guilty of taking the long-awaited first grandchild to “the other end of the world” only eight months after he was born.

Knowing about our whakapapa, where we come from, who has been before us and what they were like is such an integral part of our identity. Only if we stand with our roots well-anchored into the ground, can our branches grow high and wide into our future.

We sat with our parents’ heart-wrenching tears flowing from a shattered dream to have the grandchild close by. We discussed the angry accusations about us not loving our family – why else would we have moved so far away? And we felt the coldness when we expressed our homesickness because, after all, we had no one else to blame. These were the downfalls. However, over the last 13 years we have seen our three children develop very close relationships with their grandparents. Actually, it is just this distance that can help build a unique relationship. American author, Napoleon Hill, famously said: “In every adversity, there is the seed of an equivalent advantage.” From talking with others in similar situations, we know that the relationship is not being taken for granted, the time we have together, whether in person or in the virtual world, has a special place, and everyone makes more of an effort to be their best when we are together. At times, our children’s grandmother has said that she “sees” our children more than other grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

There are only two lasting bequests we can hope to give our children: One of these is roots, the other, wings. – Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

This article suggests ways to foster close, positive and nurturing relationships between grandparents and grandchildren thousands of miles apart, so far apart that it can take more than a day to get to each other, many thousands of dollars, and an extended holiday to make

Alex Haley, an American writer on topics around genealogy, once said: “Nobody can do for little children what grandparents do. Grandparents sort of sprinkle stardust over the lives of little children.” The legacy that grandparents pass on to their grandchildren will be much more than money or possessions. It can be the priceless gift of themselves and grandchildren will cherish the relationship with them for a lifetime.

Grandparents play a vital role in nurturing these strong roots that will help their grandchildren weather many storms in the – future long after their lifetime has passed. The parents of these grandchildren play a vital role in fostering the relationship between their offspring and their own parents, and this is true regardless of the physical distance. So – how can the grandparents sprinkle that dust onto our children when, despite throwing it, it might get lost due to the immense distance? How do we foster loving and close relationships between those little stars in our homes and those stars scattered across the globe especially in those first three years of life? To start a legacy you take baby steps. You have to work together as a team, and make it a special commitment from both sides. And then you smother all that in a huge load of creativity and flexibility with a focus on the grandchildren’s needs and stages of development. And “voila”: your children will have grandparents that may be out of sight but will be very much in their minds and hearts long-term.

The HOW and WHEN of sustainable communication Communication is key to any relationship; without a message being sent and received on some level there is no relationship. Now, it is important to think practically first, so this is about HOW to communicate considering everyone’s’ abilities and needs. You can use phone calls, Skype, FaceTime, or send messages via texting, snail mail, email, fax, or WhatsApp. The main thing is to consider is whether everyone is able to use these things and if the message will be meaningful. We are all too familiar with what works for us, however, seeing this from a baby or toddler’s perspective can help – because in the end it needs to work for the grandparent and the grandchild in order to be effective. That means visual plus auditory first – sound and tone of voice are important before meaningful words or messages are understood, try to have play before conversation.

Continued overleaf... subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



The second thing to think about is WHEN you can commit to keeping in touch. Families with littlies are busy so it works best if you think about your schedule, choose a time that has no interruptions, and when the kids are alert and content so that they are eager to engage. Also consider the time difference – and remember to factor in daylight saving as well. Make sure your device is ready to go for when you need it is important too; so make sure it is properly charged.

Getting the message through Babies and toddlers are all visual first and over time they love listening to pleasurable and varied sounds before they make sense of words. With babies, Skype or FaceTime can work really well. It’s important to allow face-to-face interaction time between grandparents and grandchild instead of just the baby seeing you talk to your parents. Make sure they can see the screen and let the grandparents make silly faces and goofy sounds. Babies will love copying them! Grandparents can also sing songs, read stories, show books, their pets, or photos of things they have seen around their home (e.g. the neighbour’s cat) and make the relevant noises either on live or pre-recorded. This can later even develop into a puppet show that the preschool grandchild will be an active participant in. Toddlers will love showing their toys to their grandparents – or even attempting to give them food. Our nearly four-year-old daughter currently loves giving her grandparents a special spot on her playmat via the tablet and having a tea party with them just before she turns the tablet around to show them that the sun is setting so that they can have it too until the next morning while they send us the moon. After all, it is all about how well we are sharing! At times we play birthday party on the mat and we have candles that we blow out and Oma does the same on her table in Germany. We plan to send her a special high tea cup and saucer from the op shop that she can use for those occasions. About a year ago we printed off a photo and painted a card that we put in an envelope, we then licked to glue it shut, we bought a stamp which our daughter licked and stuck on and then posted in the letter box. For weeks she was talking about the postie fetching it from the box to take it to the plane, then the pilot would give it to a special mailman to take to grandma’s house – and it was all true because we watched her open the letter on FaceTime. Seeing Oma’s delight made it so worthwhile. We are now thinking of using the fax in our printer to scan and send pictures that can be printed off at Oma’s house. To achieve all this, we had to set up the grandparents with the appropriate devices, support them to grow the courage and skill to use them, then provide them the opportunity to practise. After five years they would not want to miss any of it.

Making it even more real When family friends ask my parents “How can you bear being so far away from your grandchildren?” their standard reply is always along the lines of “thank God

62 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Seven-month-old Anna holding the iPad and being fully engaged with her Oma in Germany on Skype.

for Skype/FaceTime”. We usually see them two or three times a week. We would be in denial if we said that these amazing technologies will ever replace an actual visit or holiday together. It is the touch that is the cherry on the cake which no technology can replace. However, those technologies can help to enhance the real-life experience. They come in useful in preparing for a special visit or trip. When children are about three years of age we can talk about visiting grandma, or grandpa coming for a visit. They can take videos of the plane and show that grandpa is on the way. Or the grandparents can take videos of the house we will sleep in, the pets that live in the house and we will soon be able to pat, and photos of the places we will visit, the things we will do together, or the food that we will eat. Between visits we show Opa, who is a tailor, all the things we are collecting so that he can do some mending for us when he comes or the fabrics we have bought so he can help us make some dolls’ clothes. Sometimes we collect things over a few months and then, when the box is full, we send a parcel of enjoyment that we can see Opa open. Equally when we get a parcel it is a family occasion and will not be opened until everyone is home.

Why do these things matter so much? We are programmed to belong to others and to build relationships. Without human interaction to build relationships we shrivel emotionally. As a psychologist. I think these strategies make a relationship real – it is about holding someone in mind which, after all, is the essence of human attachment. Attachment to others sits at the core of who we are, who we can be, and how loved and worthwhile we are. Fostering close and loving relationships with grandparents is key to this regardless of the physical distance. Because when it comes to relationships it is the quality rather than the quantity that matters. 

Kerstin Kramar PGDipClinPsych, NZCCP Kerstin is a clinical psychologist. She lives in Wellington with her husband and three children aged one, three and thirteen whom she adores. They get her thinking about parenting babies and teens at the end of every day. She has worked as a psychologist with kids, teenagers and families; special interest: general parenting, moral/empathy development of children/teens in foster care, attachment parenting and autism.

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Saying goodbye – separation anxiety The age and stage of a child will play a part in how a child responds to separation, however, it’s important to know that separation anxiety is a completely normal part of childhood.

weeks of care to support the child to build familiarity with their new environment and relationships with their new care providers.

Separation anxiety can manifest as clinginess, distress and withdrawal. Typically, it begins from about six months of age, appears again at around 15 to 18 months of age, and sometimes when a child is three. In between these times, you may see separation anxiety when a child begins a new relationship with an unfamiliar adult (such as an in-home educator) or when they have experienced significant changes in their lives like moving house.

Empathising with a child and supporting them with words helps them understand their feelings and feel heard and understood.

Children rely on us to support their transitions, to help them to manage their big feelings and to take care of their emotional needs. This isn’t always easy, especially with young children who aren’t yet able to tell us what these needs are. Here are some ideas that can help:

Ease them into it A gentle transition into new care arrangements will help a child to feel more comfortable. This could involve the parent remaining for periods of time over the first few

64 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Talk to them

Acknowledge the emotion – then redirect or distract Always let children know you get how they are feeling (“I can see how sad you are that Mummy had to go to work”), before you find something else for them to become interested in. Our brains can’t be upset and curious at the same time so helping a child to focus on something else does really help at times of distress.

Connect with them When transitioning into a new care arrangement, a child will feel more comfort and build more familiarity when this is with one primary caregiver who genuinely likes them and has time and patience while their relationship

“As parents, we all know that feeling – the nervous anxiety we can feel in those early days of saying goodbye to our child and leaving them in the care of someone else. It’s not made any easier when our child may also be having big feelings in response to our departure.” By Erin Maloney, General Manager of PORSE Education and Training

develops. Having this one-on-one nurturing relationship will help feelings of security and trust to grow.

Build a routine

If you are the new person providing care, don’t forget the parents

Help your child to build a pattern of expectation around separation with a predictable leaving routine – like reading one story before you go. Children find routines comforting so find one that works for you and your relationship.

Remember that parents also need emotional support

Allow home comforts

around leaving their child.

Encourage children to take their own familiar or special possessions with them into care – a favourite cuddly, book or toy. Sometimes something that reminds them of their parent can help them to know the parent will return.

when leaving their child. Communication is key here – a text message to let them know their child has settled, and photos and detailed accounts of their child’s day will help to support parents with their own feelings

During periods of separation, children need to know their new environment is secure and can be trusted. This trust is fostered through relationships, having their needs met sensitively and consistently, and being shown genuine affection and attention. 

Where do you find a Mum like you? Enrol your little one with PORSE today, and rest easy knowing your child will be getting flexible and attentive care second only to yours, in a nurturing home environment, with one loving Educator or Nanny.

If staying at home is where your heart is... Contact us today to find out how you can earn an income as an Educator, while growing little minds at home.

0800 023 456 porse.co.nz subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz – kiwiparent


Giving and Caring

One of my very favourite gifts in recent years has been a goat.

that reusing baby items makes so much sense that everyone should do it – it’s not something that should just be determined by income or circumstances.)

Not a goat in a “Where on earth am I going to put it, and most importantly will it get on with the cat?” type of way, but a goat in a “Making a very real difference to a family in Papua New Guinea” type of way.

You can help us to give the gift of caring and giving by:

These kinds of gifts have become increasingly popular over the past few years and they are very much about people and families making conscious decisions to reject commercialism, people and families making good environmental choices, and people and families creating social impact by helping to make a very real difference in the lives of others. Last year in eight centres across New Zealand, Pregnancy Help provided families with a helping hand of 83,582 items of baby and children’s clothing, 14,159 nappies, 4873 items of baby bedding, 1512 maternity bras and clothing, and 426 bassinets (these are loaned for a period of time and then returned to us). At the very heart of what we do is giving and caring. People knitting and sewing. People donating items and swapping smaller items for larger ones as their baby grows.

„„ Donating clothing that your baby or child has outgrown (whether it’s one item or a bag full of items, it all helps us to make a difference). „„ Donating baby bedding that you no longer need (or woollen blankets in larger sizes that can be upcycled into baby bedding). „„ Donating reusable and disposable nappies. „„ Donating maternity clothing and maternity bras. „„ Donating items such as breast pads and sanitary items. „„ Donating baby toiletries (new and unopened only) „„ Donating 3ply, 4ply and double knit wool (in fact, any wool that can be knitted or crocheted into items such as hats, singlets, booties, and blankets). „„ Contacting your nearest Pregnancy Help Branch to find out about their volunteer opportunities. „„ Telling other people about what we do and how we can help.


People caring about helping each other out. People caring about helping parents to prepare for parenthood and grandparents and families/whanau to prepare for the care of little ones. People caring about reusing items because of the benefits to the environment. (We very much believe

66 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Comments from Pregnancy Help supporters: Giving challenges us to think outside of ourselves, to understand there is a whole world out there beyond us and many who can’t access what we have. It helps

#GivingTuesday: The #GivingTuesday movement (started in the United States in 2012) has helped people to focus on this at the beginning of the holiday season and is becoming increasingly recognised and popular in New Zealand. It takes place on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving each year (this year on 29 November) and is noted as a global day of giving, fuelled by the power of social media and collaboration.

me feel grateful for what I have been blessed with. It’s also great to think of objects being used and reused and not wasted. – Michelle I was on the receiving end of a lot of generosity when I was a struggling solo mum. I get great satisfaction now that I am in a position to pay it forward. – Jess I love to share what I have as it means someone may worry less, fear less, may feel they can cope, can hope and manage their life situation. I have been on the receiving end of giving and sharing – means the difference between just surviving and thriving! In the early days of parenting this can mean so much. – Becky

How can you help others through the gift of your time, donations, goods or your voice? Whether you donate some food to your local food bank, or some pet food to the SPCA, or some clothing to your local hospice shop, or some curtains to your local curtain bank, or go along to your local volunteer centre to look at volunteer opportunities for next year, or donate some items to us, or even buy a goat for a family in Papua New Guinea, you are helping to make the world a better place to be.

Chris Ottley Chris is a parent and grandparent and has been involved in Pregnancy Help for 12 years. She cares passionately about the work Pregnancy Help does and the impact that it makes. She also feels strongly that people are the taonga of the organisation – the people that are helped and the people who contribute so that help can be provided.

I love giving because I feel as a new mum it's a hard enough job without worrying if my baby is warm and clothed. Pregnancy Help supports any mum who feels they are struggling and I like knowing my giving helps someone who appreciates it. – Anna It takes a village to raise a child and sometimes people don’t have that village support. I’m lucky enough that I do, so I pay it forward when I can. – Tahnee Other people’s kids are going to be our fellow adult citizens one day. A lot of people don’t realise the influence that early family support can have on the type of adult a child becomes. I don’t have kids yet but my friends do. Most have family help and financial stability but I know they still find it hard sometimes. If I lived in the same town I would try to help them out, but I don’t, so I try to make it easier for parents in general from where I am. – Charmaine I love giving to Pregnancy Help because knowing that the baby/toddler clothes that I give them will be going to someone who will appreciate them and need them. That makes me happy. – Rebecca

Rest Easy with Touchwood As parents we want to keep our babies safe, day and night. Our range of nursery and children’s furniture have always met the highest safety standards (Australia/New Zealand Safety Standards 2172), making Touchwood cots some of the safest on the market. So if you want beautifully crafted, long lasting nursery and children’s furniture that lead the way in safety, design and quality, choose Touchwood. With Touchwood, not only will your baby sleep better at night, so will you.

I don’t have a lot of spare money but I have spare time and love to work hard. That’s why I usually volunteer my time. My parents have a quote that I have always loved and sums up our family totally. ‘Give what you have, do what you can’. – Katie I love to be able to help out by knitting singlets, I love to help people and this is one way to help, and it’s also something I love doing. – Robyn 

Cots are available in leading retail furniture and baby stores nationwide. Children’s bedroom furniture can be purchased online or at our showroom at 98 Main Road, Tawa.


subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz – www.touchwoodfurniture.co.nz


Gifting birth wisdom to others The birth of my first child was my first childbirth experience. I am not alone in this; most of the couples attending our childbirth workshops have had no first-hand experience of birth. When you have never seen a woman giving birth, the idea of childbearing becomes, at its best, mysterious and exciting, and at its worst, unknown and scary. Luckily for me, my sister put me in touch with the Homebirth Midwives and the Homebirth Association (HBA). The knowledge I gained through these relationships became a source of confidence in my body and my own birth wisdom. Being at information evenings, antenatal classes and HBA meetings surrounded by experienced, opinionated and well-informed parents has helped me gather a true picture of natural childbirth. Their stories told of strong, instinctive bodies that could not only give birth naturally but could truly own this intense experience. There was no judgement about where these births took place: whether at home or in hospital, they were defined by respectful and wellinformed partnerships between midwife, mother and support team. In my discussions with these couples, I have discovered that there are myriad ways for women to cope with childbirth. Individual approaches can differ wildly, yet remain effective and within the realm of “normal”. Our right to birth as freely and naturally as possible is limited both by the medical prescription of “normal” but also our own cultural perceptions about how women should behave during childbirth. I admit to believing that my “natural homebirth” would see me calmly breathing my baby out through my blossoming petal of a vagina. My moaning, writhing, grunting, animalistic birthing body was a source of embarrassment for me, it was something abnormal. The truth is that there is a large range of “normal” behaviour in childbirth. The way women move, sound and feel during labour serves different purposes at

68 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

different times and changes according to their physical and emotional needs. These states are not often described to women before they experience birthing themselves, so I have been gathering some “birth wisdom” from our homebirth community to share on my blog. If you and your birthing team prioritise a setting conducive to natural birth, here are some of the birthing states you may enter, or that your birthing team may observe and assist with:

Active relaxation A focussed inner state of trying to let every muscle and joint in your body give in to the power of contractions. During this time, the mother sways, sighs and surrenders her body to the work of the uterus: “I have no doubt that keeping my eyes closed and focusing on my breathing helped me, especially in my first birth in hospital as the room was full of people but I was very calm and relaxed.” – Lydia Garner

Burrowing Some labouring women gain great comfort and strength from pressure against their bodies, such as leaning and pushing into their partners or even furniture: “I laboured most of my time clutching onto someone. As they had their leg forward I would sit on it and concentrate. The closeness and strength from others really helped me through it. I let my body take over and tell me what I needed to do.” – Meranie Oliver

Making space During labour, the baby moves to adjust to the shape of the pelvis, which also calls for the mother to respond with her own dance to make space: “I spent pretty much my whole labour on all fours, with my head resting on the couch. I would rise up to my knees for a contraction, and rock and sway and vocalise through that, and then back to almost a child’s pose position in between.” – Amy Scott

Resting Sometimes the body needs time to get everything in line for the baby’s descent. During this time, the mother is challenged to wait. She tries to find physical comfort in lying on her side. At times, she will doze into the stillness between contractions – almost passing out until the contraction calls her back to action: “My eyes were closed on the toilet and it felt like I was sleeping in between contractions, my mum wedged in next to me so I wouldn’t fall off.” – Alice Jackson

Closing in Birthing can be a hugely physically and emotionally demanding experience. At times women need to dig deep from within to find courage and strength. During this state of closing in, women often want to get away from any external stimuli: “I think the fact that I was stuck at 9cm for such a long time discouraged me quite

Helping parents make the right decision Parents Centre welcomes and supports couples to all of our childbirth education classes and programmes who are considering and planning a home birth. Our classes provide relevant, researched information to assist parents in making a decision that is right for their personal situation. We believe in supporting parents with the choices they have made through informed decision making. Find out about childbirth education classes near you. www.parentscentre.org.nz

a bit... As soon as I moved into the bedroom in pitch black and silence, things progressed. Twenty mins later I had transitioned, half an hour after that baby was born.” – Alice Jackson

Expulsive motion A wide-eyed and physical state when women are using their whole being to bear down. This is powerful, instinctive and at times loud: “I was surprised by the guttural noises I didn’t know I could make when in transition waiting for the midwife to arrive!” – Jen Pomeroy These are just a few examples from a long and varied list of ways in which women labour. I will be expanding upon each of these “states” of birthing in my online blog “Our Birth Wisdom: Birthing experiences from women for women”. If you have birth stories you would like to share with me – ways you moved, behaved and felt during labour – I would love to hear from you. We live in a culture where birthing is private; we rarely have a chance to experience birth first-hand. Our ideas of birth are shaped by dramas portrayed in the media and we are not always encouraged to share our birth stories. My sincere hope is that there will always be organisations like the HBA bringing together women so that our collective birth wisdom can be protected and gifted to others. I want to know that if my children and my children’s children want to birth naturally, they will find a knowledgeable support network to guide them through. 

Erica Viedma Erica has been teaching movement for labour classes for Homebirth Antenatal classes for more than eight years. To contact her, email erica.viedma@gmail.com or visit www.mindfulmovement.org.nz.

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Child focused decisions Holiday contact for separated parents

Making care and contact arrangements for children over the holidays can be a difficult task for separated parents. However, this difficulty is not a reason to delay the conversation. Reaching agreement on these matters sooner rather than later can save you a whole lot of stress and worry down the track. Otherwise, you may find yourself scrambling to find a lawyer and file Court proceedings on Christmas Eve. How you approach holiday childcare arrangements depends on your situation. Some people already have detailed parenting orders or parenting plans which cover who will care for the children and when. In those circumstances, unless you and the other parent both clearly agree to do something else, then you should stick to those terms. If you have an informal arrangement, the best idea is to start the conversation early – communicate

and (hopefully) reach an agreement you are both happy with. That way, each parent knows in advance when they will have the children, and can plan everything else accordingly. You need to decide on the best arrangements for your particular children. There is no ‘one-size-fits-all’ approach, and people come up with all sorts of ideas – some continue their usual care arrangements and let Christmas and New Year days lie where they fall, others go week-

70 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

about, some alternate Christmas and New Year each year, others split the days in half, and so on. When thinking about this, it is important to be realistic. If you live at opposite ends of the country, you are not going to be able to split Christmas Day in half. Think about the broader picture – what traditions do each parent’s wider family have? Are there any special gatherings that the children would benefit from being a part of? When are you each able to take time off work? As always, it is important to be child-focused in your decisionmaking. Remember that if the Court were asked to decide what should happen, they would aim to make arrangements that best support the child’s welfare and best

So, how do you go about reaching these agreements? If you are not able to do so directly, Family Dispute Resolution (FDR) mediation is usually the first step. It allows you to discuss the issues and what each of you wants, with the help of a trained independent mediator. Other options include negotiating via lawyers, or applying to the Family Court. However, it is probably too late to get a hearing before this Christmas unless there are really urgent circumstances. It is best to speak with a lawyer about your situation, and get specific advice about your options.

What can you do if things go wrong on the day? That depends on what arrangements you have. If you have a parenting order that the other party does not comply with, then you can take steps to enforce it.

interests. Related to this are the six principles we looked at last issue – protecting a child from all forms of violence, putting responsibility for the child’s care with the parents and guardians, ongoing consultation and cooperation amongst parents and guardians, continuity in the child’s care, ongoing relationships with each parent and their wider family, and preserving and strengthening the child’s identity. Unfortunately we have seen people fighting staunchly through the Court system to have Christmas Day with the children, seemingly just in an attempt to get a “win” over the other parent. Everyone loses in that situation, especially the children.

An example is if the order says the children are to changeover at 10am, but the other parent who is meant to drop them off does not show up and when you call them, says that the children are staying where they are. In the first instance the Police can help you to try and resolve the situation, but they do not have the power to physically uplift a child without a warrant. So if the other parent is still refusing to comply, an application needs to be made to the Family Court for a warrant – although given how traumatising that can be for children, it is seen as a last resort. Keep in mind that it is an offence to intentionally breach, or prevent compliance with, a parenting order

without reasonable cause, and you can be criminally charged. There are also various other things the Family Court can do in this situation – including changing or cancelling the order, ordering someone to enter into a monetary bond to ensure future compliance, and so on. If you do not already have a parenting order, you may be able to apply for one urgently “without notice”, depending on the circumstances. This means that you ask the Court to make an order without the other parent first knowing, or being able to have a say. They are usually served with the paperwork after the Court has already made a decision. Given the unfairness of a "without notice" application to the other (unheard) parent, they can usually only be made when the delay that would result from making a normal “on notice” application could result in serious injury, hardship or a risk to someone’s safety. While you will not be able to access the Family Court on Christmas Day, they usually provide a national service for urgent applications over the Christmas and New Year period. This will not cover the statutory days (Christmas Day, Boxing Day, New Years Day, or the 2nd of January), but there will be judges available during certain hours on other days to deal with urgent matters. So it is easy to see that early discussions about the holidays will leave you best placed to have a stress-free Christmas. If that is not possible, then getting early advice and starting the legal process sooner rather than later should help you reach a solution. 

Maretta Twentyman Maretta is a family lawyer at Morrison Kent in Wellington, specialising in childcare matters, relationship property and contested estates. After graduating from the University of Otago, she practised in Auckland and London before moving to the capital in early 2016. www.morrisonkent.com

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



partners Partnering to support families At Parents Centre we pride ourselves on developing long-term strategic partnerships with like-minded organisations. PORSE has been a supporter of Parents Centre for over four years and we know that they bring value to our organisation – specifically to our Centres. PORSE offers support at a local level, regionally and for our members in terms of discounted fees and high quality Early Childhood Education options for our families.

As a not-for-profit organisation we rely on our partners to ensure that we can continue to deliver support to families across New Zealand on an ongoing basis. We are proud that PORSE is one of those partners. Taslim Parsons

Social Enterprise Manager Parents Centre New Zealand

A word from PORSE PORSE has been supporting parents to transition their preschool children into the arms of warm, caring and passionate educators for over two decades, and is proud to be the leading in-home childcare provider in New Zealand. PORSE and Parents Centre share the same fundamental belief that establishing secure attachment relationships based on love, trust and respect in the early months and years of a child’s life is critical to their long-term development. We believe providing care in a natural home environment with one consistent caregiver/educator supports this. To ensure we can continue to provide this important service to families, PORSE supports adults with a passion for children to provide in-home education under the PORSE programme, which includes ongoing training, the guidance of a trained ECE teacher, and a weekly activity programme. PORSE is proud to partner with Parents Centre, recognising the important work they do throughout New Zealand to support parents on the most rewarding and challenging journey of their lives. Pip Thompson


Johnson & Johnson For over 100 years, JOHNSON'S® baby has been dedicated to designing gentle and mild products, especially for baby. We continuously apply our knowledge and research to create innovative products with safety at their core. That's why parents and healthcare professionals around the world have trusted JOHNSON'S® baby to nurture the little ones in their care.


Philips Avent Choosing Philips AVENT means you have the assurance of superior quality products, designed with you and baby’s needs in mind. Interchangeable design features mean products can be adapted to meet baby’s developing needs. Phone: 0800 104 401 www.philips.co.nz/AVENT

72 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Huggies online pregnancy and parenting The HUGGIES® website is about pregnancy and parenting. Check out features such as special offers, info on sleeping and settling, plus hundreds of recipes and kids activity ideas! And it’s all free to HUGGIES® Baby Club members. Phone: 0800 733 703 www.huggies.co.nz

supporting Kiwi parents

Au Pair Link New Zealand Since 2006 we've been flying loving au pairs from all corners of the globe to join busy Kiwi host families, providing quality in-home care and education for their little ones. Today we have hundreds of families enrolled in early learning programmes and staff across New Zealand. This means our customers benefit from a personal, safe and reliable service throughout New Zealand. www.aupairlink.co.nz

PORSE Our babies are born with the need to connect. PORSE in-home educators, nannies and au pairs provide a calm and stable home environment to nurture close connected relationships, setting the foundation for lifelong learning. Phone: 0800 023 456 www.porse.co.nz

My Food Bag Every week Nadia and her team of test chefs dream up exciting and nutritious dinner recipes just for you. We like to keep things simple, so every week (or fortnight) we deliver the ingredients and recipes right to your door. You just open your food bag and discover what tasty meals you get to cook and enjoy. Simple. Healthy. Delicious. www.myfoodbag.co.nz

0800 222 966 / www.babyonthemove.co.nz

Baby On The Move Specialists in quality, affordable baby products that you can hire or purchase new. Our qualified team can help you select the correct restraint. Plus if you hire or buy from us we will install your car seat for FREE! Stores nationwide. Phone: 0800 222 966 www.babyonthemove.co.nz

Kai Carrier Reusable food pouches that can be filled with homemade food so you know exactly what you and your children are eating whilst minimising the mess. They allow you to make nutritious food free of additives, preservatives and excess sugar and serve it in a convenient way, anywhere, anytime. www.kaicarrier.co.nz

Bio-Oil® specialist skincare This specialist skincare product helps improve the appearance of scars, stretch marks and uneven skin tone. It contains PurCellin Oil™, and is it highly effective for other skin concerns, including aging skin and dehydrated skin. Phone: 0800 804 711 www.bio-oil.com



Parents Centre New Zealand

Hotmilk Lingerie Designed by women, for women, Hotmilk has revolutionised the nursing lingerie market with its provocative and fashionforward styling. Embraced by all from Hollywood celebrities to the girl next door, Hotmilk lingerie is exquisitely styled and technologically advanced.

Mumma Bubba Jewellery A safe alternative to costume jewellery providing relief to tender gums, these products provide an innovative solution , to teething Accessorytroubles with a range Fashion essityseasonal, ! of colourful, fashionable ec N y b Ba accessories which young babies and their mums love.

Parents Centre develops strategic partnerships that offer a direct benefit to our membership. Partnerships give organisations access to over 20,000 members, 48 Centres and our community reach of over 100,000 families. Our partners profile products and services through our childbirth education classes, parent education programmes and a whole host of other activities.


www.mummabubbajewellery.co.nz Silicone Jewellery Free of BPA & lead Dishwasher safe



find us on

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –




Congratulations to the lucky winners From issue 274

Little Nipper Buggy

Phil and Ted Travel Set

Victoria Wilson Auckland

Sarah Truman Invercargill

Brolly Sheets

Hotmilk Breastfeeding Package

Jemima Clarke Masterton Miriam Kamsteeg Auckland

Cecile Baranx Auckland

Family Food Bag

Bio Oil Pack

Nikki Carmichael Wellington

Dave Timmins Porirua Ange Dacombe Waikuku Beach

74 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Shopping cart


because home-made is best for your baby

Bronzes Baby Banz stay-put sunglasses and sound-protective earmuffs Summer essentials for Kiwi babies and kids!

2 compact baby food freezing trays with lids. 1.2L capacity for maximum storage recipe e-guide with 27 recipes for starting solids and beyond



subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –




Pump anytime, anywhere, and around anyone. www.kaicarrier.co.nz BPA Free & Re-useable

A Hands-free, Concealable Breast Pump Collection System.


✓ ✓ ✓ ✓

✓ ✓ ✓ ✓


Compatible with Medela, Avent, NUK, Spectra & Unimom

Available now at



76 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

The gorgeous Millie & Boris Collection is made from fine Indian cotton, hand quilting and 3D features is now available at The Kids Dept. www.thekidsdept.co.nz 16 Highbrook Drive, East Tamaki.

Est. 1991

Fun stylish everyday babywear, from premature to size 3

Summer now in store!

Tiny Turtles is New Zealand’s Largest Online Stockist of BONDS Babywear. Free NZ shipping with the code: KP016


725 Dominion Rd, Balmoral, Auckland ph 09 6205 972 Open Mon to Fri


Toddler Pillow Made of NZ wool with a hemp and organic cotton outer.

09 838 2374 • www.naturessway.co.nz

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



Shopping cart

Stop the growth of mould, bacteria and fungi Indoors with Clean Fresh Air.

Children's concept store for 0 to 8 years

Keep little lungs healthy.

Receive 10% off your first order with code KP (Expires 31/1/17)


Find out more at cleanfreshair.co.nz

Tui Baby Balm for natural baby skincare Recommended by midwives Protects and soothes nappy rash, cradle cap, eczema and other skin conditions. Use for mum’s nipple and belly care. Hydrates and moisturises, leaving skin soft and silky

Chateau Cot and Chest Pre-order now grotime.co.nz 0508 476 932

Altogether natural! Made in NZ since 1984 www.tuibalms.co.nz

All profits donated to NZ charities annually

Let your ideas loose all over your walls with Resene Write-on Wall Paint.



78 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Simply apply over your existing light coloured wall paint. Then once dry and cured you can use whiteboard markers to write all over the wall without damaging the surface. And when it’s time to delete an idea just grab a soft cloth or whiteboard eraser, rub out the marker and start again. With Resene Write-on Wall Paint there’s no limit to your ideas.

0800 RESENE (737 363)


Wishing all Kiwi parents a peaceful festive break and a wonderful summer holiday

From the Kiwiparent team

subscribe online at www.kiwiparent.co.nz –



win great giveaways

Enter online at kiwiparent.co.nz and follow the instructions. Entries must be received by 5pm January 20, 2017. Winners will be published in issue 277.

Be in to win a Hape Trainset from Roundabout The E3701 High Low Railway RRP $145.00 The ultimate train conducting experience! Multi-level tracks offer many ways to create individualised railway. Decide where to place your station and decorate your railroad with trees! Graphics are screen-printed on the wood with non-toxic child-safe finishes. Layout: 900 x 670 x 100 mm. Contains 85 pieces. E3713 Forest Railway set RRP $110.00 Build a railway through a forest wonderland complete with trees, tunnels, a bridge, and wildlife! This Hape Railway set includes lengths of curved and straight track as well as tunnels, a bridge, landscape features, and a three-car train. Compatible with all wooden railways. Layout 1000 x 810 x 100mm. Contains 54 pieces.

Win a freerider from Mountain Buggy From stroller board... to scooter fun! The Mountain Buggy freerider is a double award winning stroller board AND scooter in one! With the ability to connect to many buggy brands, freerider allows children to ride close for a bonding experience on the buggy, or ride free as an easy-to-manoeuvre scooter that helps develop balance as well as being fun! RRP $189 mountainbuggy.com

Win a Beco Gemini Cool Mesh baby carrier from the Sleep Store Unlike any other active carrier on the market, Beco Cool brings you a performance fabric that draws away moisture and keeps you dry. Beco Gemini Cool helps to regulate body temperature so your baby stays cooler in the heat, and offers SPF 50 UVA/UVB protection to defend against the sun. Perfect for the beach, too! The wonderful Beco Gemini can be used from newborn, without the need for a bulky infant insert, up to 15kg. www.thesleepstore.co.nz

Win one of 12 cups from Philips Avent The Philips Avent range of toddler cups are designed to help your little ones develop their independent drinking skills. The soft, flexible, no-spill Sip no Drip cups are ideal from six months and the unique Grown Up cups with a lip-activated valve help teach toddlers to drink like a grown up without the mess. We have six Philips Avent Grown Up Cups (choice of purple or orange) and 6 Philips Avent Sip no Drip Black 6m+ cups to give away to some lucky readers. RRP $16.99.

Win a BUNCH O BALLOONS ‘water fun’ prize pack Looking to cool down with your friends and family this summer and have some water fun? Then check out this fantastic Bunch O Balloons ‘water fun’ prize pack. 4 x Bunch O Balloons ‘water fun’ prize packs, total prize pack worth RRP$68, each includes: „„ BOB 3 pack „„ B OB Bat and Balloons „„ B OB Dual Ambush Pumper Gun and Balloons

80 kiwiparent – supporting kiwi parents through the early years

Marley, Rotorua

Matteo, Dunedin

Hendrix, Auckland

Mia, Queenstown

No Harsh Chemicals No Added Parabens Hypoallergenic Made especially for your baby’s delicate skin



15% OFF Exclusive Kiwiparent offer...



Valid on orders of $20 or more before 31 January 2017.

E Z I B U Y. C O M • 0 5 0 8 5 0 0 5 0 0 *Terms and conditions: Offer valid until midnight 31 January 2017. Promotion code KIWI15 must be used at the time of purchase to activate the offer. Offer excludes gift cards and top ups, NEXT, Spanx merchandise, Breast Cancer Cure merchandise and personalised gifts. Minimum spend must be in a single transaction, and excludes delivery charges. Offer cannot be used in conjunction with any other offer or promotion, or be applied to previously processed orders. Offer valid for use once only, and only by its original recipient.

Profile for Parents Centres New Zealand Inc

Kiwiparent Issue #275 - December 2016 - January 2017  

Kiwiparent Issue #275 - December 2016 - January 2017

Kiwiparent Issue #275 - December 2016 - January 2017  

Kiwiparent Issue #275 - December 2016 - January 2017