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Edit or’s L et t er With everything outside turning lush green it is a reminder to all of us about doing our share to live green. Our Green Issue is all about helping you make environmental-friendly and healthy choices for your family. We offer new ideas on how you see everyday products; choose healthy drink choices and introduce baby to nature on the westcoast. Every edition of Urbanbaby & Toddler Magazine in 2012 will showcase a special UrbanGuide. Our Spring 2012 UrbanGuide features an impressive line-up of strollers on the market available for your active and growing family. Special congratulations to Nicole from the Langara College Magazine Design course, whose design was selected from several very outstanding entries. My sincere thanks to all the Langara College students and faculty who participated in our cover design contest. Editor on the cover Delara, 3 yrs old Cover by Nicole Stishenko, Magazine Design course Langara College Photo credit: Bopomo Pictures

volume 10 • issue 1

We welcome your letters to the editor at Check out our new website launching March 15th, 2012.

family: Exploring the Adoption Option................................................................. 4 feature: Disposable or Cloth? The Great Diaper Debate...................................... 6 celebrity mommy: Financial Guru, Gail Vaz-Oxlade: Managing Your Money........ 8 parenting: Going Green: One Product at a Time............................................... 10 nutrition: Liquid Candy: What Are Your Kids Drinking?...................................... 12 COVER CONTEST 2012: Entry Form............................................................... 14 parenting: Parenting Goes Techy: There’s an App for That!............................... 16 relationships: Trusting Mom, Dad & Jimmy Kimmel.......................................... 18 URBAN MARKET: Products & Promotions....................................................... 20 education expert: The 20-Minute Commitment That Will Make You a Better Parent.................................................................... 22 education: Saving For Your Child’s Future Without Breaking the Bank.............. 24 ceo mom: 5 Tips on Organizing Your Life to be Stress Free.............................. 25 GREAT GOODS: Green Products!.................................................................... 26 URBAN GUIDE: 2012 Stroller Shopping Guide................................................. 28 outdoor fun: Introducing Your Baby to Nature.................................................. 30 EDITOR/AD SALES Lara Leontowich


CONTRIBUTORS Andrea Chatwin, Christy Laverty, Christina Stewart, Particia Cheuy, Daniela Ginta, Marilee Peters, Cara Hykawy, Natacha V. Beim, Allison M. Layne, Rowena List, Michael Boronowski SUBSCRIPTION urbanbaby & toddler magazine available for $20.00* per year (4 issues). urbanbaby & toddler magazine is published four times per year by Local Kids Media, printing 40,000 copies per issue.*Price includes HST Material appearing herein may not be reproduced in print or electronically without written permission of the publisher, and without proper credit. Editorial opinions and viewpoints may not necessarily reflect those of the publisher.

the web. facebook. urbanbabyandtoddler twitter. @urbanbabymag

our contact info (mailing only). Suite 378 - 255 Newport Dr., Port Moody, BC V3H 5H1 Canada Tel. 604.908.8835 Email.

Bellies to Babies Celebration Sunday May 6th, 2012 Come Celebrate Motherhood with us at the Bellies to Babies Celebration™, the province’s educational tradeshow for new and expectant parents. Whether you’re a rookie or becoming a mom for the second or third time, this day was created just for you. Attendees will see everything from stylish baby and children’s clothing; beauty advice for radiant skin; postnatal classes for mom and baby; and green baby products for the new arrival. It’s all at one show - under one roof. Moms-to-be can participate in educational workshops. Rookie Dads can take part in our Daddy Diapering Contest! Varied support groups will also be on hand to answer questions for new and expectant parents. Bellies to Babies Celebration™ showcases a wide variety of exhibitors and sponsors with over $2000 in door prizes. The first 100 Moms in attendance receive a complimentary diaper bag sponsored by Urbanbaby & Toddler Magazine. One lucky winner could be strolling in style! Stop at the Vancouver 24 hours Booth 47 and enter to win the 2012 UPPAbaby Vista Stroller valued at $749. Stroller sponsored by Vancouver 24 hours and jack&lola.

Every mom attending the tradeshow on Sunday, May 6th, 2012 will be eligible for the grand prize draw of a $1000 shopping spree at Lusso Baby. Bellies to Babies Celebration™ takes place on Sunday, May 6th, 2012 at the Croatian Cultural Centre, 3250 Commercial Drive from 11am – 4pm. Admission is by donation to Vancouver Food Bank Basics for Babies Program. Donations include baby food, formula, diapers and baby wipes. Monetary donations are also appreciated. Bellies to Babies Celebration™ supports “Breastfeeding is Best” and provides a breastfeeding-friendly environment for all in the mommy lounge. Sponsored by: Lusso Baby, Urbanbaby & Toddler Magazine, JRFM, Virgin 95.3FM, jack&lola, Salsa Babies, Vancouver 24 hours, and Movies for Mommies. Follow us on Facebook ( to win a $100 gift certificate to spend at the Bellies to Babies Celebration Spring Tradeshow!

To Attend: Register online at or call 604-908-8835.


| by Andrea Chatwin

Explor ing the Adoption Option As a single woman in my thirties with a strong desire to parent, I decided to take a look at my options. It wasn’t long before I found myself exhilarated by the possibility of creating a family between two people who were both longing to have one. Years later, I am in awe of where this journey has taken me and the incredible story that now belongs to us, my daughter and I. Each of the families I work with has a story too, and maybe you are ready to create your own adoption story. With so many children here in British Columbia and all over the world, waiting for a family, adoption deserves a great deal of attention. In my role as an Adoption Consultant, I hear stories everyday, about how adoption has played a significant role in the formation of families. The subject of adoption for many people is laden with strong emotions, and at times, strong opinions about experiences they have lived, observed or simply heard about.

How the Adoption Process has Changed Families adopting decades ago, entered into this complex and emotional journey with little information about the experience of adoptees or specific parenting tools. Many adult adoptees I have spoken with report that the most difficult part about being adopted was the lack of acknowledgement that their experience in the adoptive family was different than that of their non-adopted siblings or peers. Research has now confirmed that adoptees do have a different experience! The first formative adult-child interactions for most adoptees involved some form of hurt in the form of neglect, abandonment or abuse. A common misconception is that children who don’t remember early experiences are not affected by them. We now know that a child’s early experiences, including prenatal, begin the process of brain formation that will impact their future development.

Good News about Adoption The good news is that what a hurt child needs most is the healing power of a parent. One who is intuitive to that child’s needs, accepting of the child’s current state of functioning and unconditionally available to that child to build trust and

connection. As an adoption community, our understanding of the needs of adopted children has changed dramatically in recent years. New research focused on the experience of adoptees, from birth to adolescence, has led to important information for adoptive families that can be translated into practical parenting strategies. This new depth of understanding sets adoptive families on the road to a successful and connected family unit. The wonderful part of my work is having an opportunity to hear ongoing chapters in each adoption story. An adoptive mother, six months after her young daughter was placed in her care, reported this experience. “ Lying side by side and playing with our hands I felt myself physically relax and truly enjoy just being with her. I smiled at her and she smiled back. I knew in that moment things would be ok. I knew this was the beginning of a strong connection between my daughter and I.”

Different Paths to Adoption The route a family chooses, whether local or international is a personal decision, based on unique factors such as previous experiences, ideas about adoption and family influences. Just as I found myself mysteriously drawn to the country of Haiti, a place I didn’t know existed until I began my adoption journey, my clients have countless stories of how certain images, ideas or stories pulled them towards a particular type of adoption, or even a particular child. There is a bond between my child and me that began the moment my fingers touched the keyboard to type in ‘countries that allow single mothers to adopt.’ BC’s Waiting Child Program: Over 1000 children, in the care of the Ministry for Children and Family Development (MCFD)

are waiting for adoptive families. These children currently live in foster care and are typically between the ages of two and eighteen, though most are over the age of six. Many are part of a sibling group. All children adopted through MCFD have some level of special placement need due to their background or prenatal history. Costs are minimal. International Adoption: This refers to the adoption of children from countries other than Canada. Most wait in orphanages and range in age from infants to teens. Many arrive with special placement needs due to their early experiences. The fees for this type of adoption vary widely depending on the process of the sending country. Local Infant Adoption: This refers to the adoption of a BC child, usually a newborn, where the birth parent has made an adoption plan. Direct Placement is when the birth parents have already chosen a (non-relative) family for their child. The fees for these adoptions vary by situation. Note: International adoptions, Local Infant Adoptions and Direct Placements must be arranged through one of BC’s four licensed adoption agencies. A homestudy and educational component are required by BC adoption law in order to complete any adoption. •

Taking The Next Steps in the Adoption Process T he A dopt ive Fa m i l ie s A s s o c i at ion of B C: Provides information, education and support to prospective families. Offers workshops such as Adoption 101. For More Info: or 604-320-7330

L ic e n s ed A dopt ion A ge nc ie s i n B r it i s h C olu m bi a: Locations in Vancouver, North Vancouver, Victoria, Kelowna. For More Info:

Adoption Consultants: Available to provide support to families by: • Finding out if adoption is the right option for your family? • What impact will adoption have on your current family situation? • What adoption plan might be the best fit for your family?

Andrea Chatwin, MA, CCC is an Adoption Consultant, Educator and Therapist with A Child’s Song. She is also the proud adoptive parent of a six year old daughter from Haiti. They live in Whiterock, BC and love to spend time at the beach together. To find out more about A Child’s Song visit

spring 2012 | | 5


| by Christy Laverty

Disposable or Cloth? The Great Diaper Debate

Babies and diapers go hand in hand. It is an inevitable reality, once you become a parent you will use thousands of diapers on your beautiful babies bottom. What isn’t inevitable is what you choose to cover your child’s tooshie. Disposable or cloth? That is the great debate for many parents. According to Environment Canada, a baby will have anywhere from 5,000 to 7,000 diaper changes in the first two years of life. Environment Canada also says about four million of those diapers are thrown out every day. It can take anywhere from 200 to 500 years for a disposable diaper to decompose. Disposable diapers came on the market in the ‘60s and were invented by a mother. A baby that is in diapers for 2 years, consumes the equivalent of 4.5 trees and puts two tons of solid waste into our environment. There is an estimate that 2.4 million trees in Canada and one billion trees world-wide are used per year, just to manufacture single-use diapers. There is no doubt the choice for many parents is disposable diapers because of the convenience factor. Ken Lashley is one of those parents. The father of two girls says it’s all about the

convenience. “I’m like most parents, I think. When you walk into the store and you see a giant pack of diapers, you don’t think of the environment. You just think how easy it is.” Before disposable diapers were introduced, all babies in North America were diapered in cloth. Ten years after the arrival of disposable diapers, that dwindled to only 10 percent. While using disposable might be easier for many parents, the diapers produce at least 70 times more municipal waste, than cloth diapers. It’s estimated two percent of household waste is diapers. Tracy Job and her husband Scott are parents concerned about all that trash. They have two girls, four year old Maggie and four month old Avery. Tracy uses disposable diapers. She says she thought about cloth but because they get their water from a well, they decided it would be too taxing on their supply. But they

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Lalabee Bathworks 100% Natural & Organic Skincare For Mommy & Baby do use biodegradable diapers sometimes. In an effort to divert some of their family’s trash from landfills, Job uses a recycling/composting service. “I kind of see this as an in-between. It’s not the cloth extreme and it’s not the disposable in the landfill either. It’s your contribution to the environment,” says Job. “It just feels right.” “For me the decision was simple, cloth diapers. I feel anything that is disposable can’t possible be good for the environment” says Stephanie Moram mom and editor and founder of Good Girl Gone Green Moram says she is using an all-in-one diaper on her daughter right now. She says they are as easy as disposable. There is no stuffing diapers and no cover required. Colleen Bezeau, owner of a Victoria-based cloth diaper store and mother, says a reusable option is key considering the millions of diapers that wind up in landfills every year, each of which takes approximately 250-500 years to decompose. “Ultimately, there is no part that is truly disposable,” says Bezeau. As a retailer, Bezeau says cloth diapers are a smart and easy alternative to disposable diapers. “More often than not, parents are caught up in common misconceptions that make them reluctant to use cloth diapers, says Bezeau. “I too was reluctant and didn’t start until my son was over one year old. I became so committed to the cause I started my own business to support other parents in using cloth diapers. In reality, cloth diapering is easy, you save money, and you help the environment. Even the laundry takes small effort.” But therein lies the environmental impact of cloth. Washing all those dirty diapers comes at a cost. According to Environment Canada, washing a load of diapers once or twice a week is roughly the same as flushing a toilet five times a day for a week. The water, which needs to be heated, the detergents and, of course, the cost of electricity, have an impact. Home laundering produces greenhouse gas and other emissions from energy consumption in the dryer. Nonetheless, it is important to remember that a large amount of water is used in the manufacturing process of disposable diapers, and the water consumed in home washing machines is often much lower now due to modern, energy efficient machines. Stephanie Moram recognizes the environmental impact of laundering cloth diapers but she says she makes every effort to be as green as possible when washing diapers. “I wash my diapers in cold water (less energy used). I use soap nuts instead of regular detergent, and after 3-4 washing you have to replace the nuts but the good part is they are compost-able and do not contaminate our water or soil. After my diapers are all washed I hang them dry them and I do on occasion use the dryer if I needed, but rarely”, says Moram. The environmental impact of cloth is far less than disposable diapers. “I realize that energy and water is needed to assemble and make cloth diapers. However, these diapers can be used many times over.” Moram says that is one of the best benefits of cloth diapers is that they can be used over and over and when your kids are all grown up you can donate or give your cloth diapers to someone else. Bezeau acknowledges the draw for parents to disposables: “Everybody likes disposable diapers for the convenience in the modern world in which we live.” If you’re set up for success with the right accessories, cloth diapering is pretty straightforward. “We don’t use disposable cutlery and dishes every night,” notes Bezeau, “and we manage just fine.” “It’s all about our eco-footprint,” notes Bezeau. And in the end, it all comes down to making a choice. Every parent must make the best choice for themselves, their child and their lifestyle. But there are choices out there. And the best ones you can make are informed ones. •

spring 2012 | | 7

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| by Christy Laverty

Financial Guru, Gail Vaz-Oxlade: Managing Your Money She has helped parents, families, homeowners and even a few princesses along the way. She is a mother of two and a financial guru with several television shows and books under her belt. Gail Vaz-Oxlade is one tough cookie when it comes to helping people get control of their finances. Born in Jamaica in 1959 Vaz-Oxlade came to Canada in 1977. After moving to Canada she began her journey into the world of finance, first working as an administrative assistant and later taking a job in marketing. In her role she did a great deal of writing which led to writing assignments for a banking client. One assignment had her writing a manual for a Registered Retirement Savings Plan. She was soon writing all of the bank’s technical materials. Before long she became a freelance writer crafting more than 25 columns a month on money issues. Years later, using all her money know-how, she began hosting the television show, Til Debt Do Us Part. After seven seasons, Vaz-Oxlade created another show, Princess. Both shows focus

Gail Vaz-oxlade, Financial Guru

on teaching people how to use money, save and get serious about their financial responsibilities. She uses tough love to teach people some hard lessons. Vaz-Oxlade even finds time in her busy schedule to write books. She is the author of It’s Your Money: Becoming a Woman of Independent Means and Money-Smart Kid$. Gail knows these topics well and some struggles women face when it comes to balancing life, children and money. As a mother of two teenagers, she has first-hand experience. Her insights came from the same growing pains other women have encountered through marriage; divorce; becoming a mom and being a working mom. 

Are you a saver, or a spender? Vaz-Oxlade suggests we all need to figure out our relationship with money, why we have it and once we do, how we can get control of it. She was inspired to write the book, It’s Your Money because of startling statistics that paint a difficult financial picture for women in Canada. According to Vaz-Oxlade, after divorce a man’s income tends to go up but a woman’s income tends to go down even though a significant number of woman head up single parent families. It’s Your Money starts by helping the reader work through their money personality. Are you a saver, or a spender? Vaz-Oxlade suggests we all need to figure out our relationship with money, why we have it and once we do, how we can get control of it. So why do some women struggle with their finances? Vaz-Oxlade suggests women typically think the numbers are overwhelming. They don’t like the jargon and relate better to practical how-tos. And that is precisely what Vaz-Oxlade does with her book, her shows and all of the advice she doles out. One thing that plays a role in the relationship women have with money is the fact they are often the shoppers in the family/ household. “There are many who have turned it into an art (the race to find a bargain) and they don’t realize they don’t need what they are buying” says Vaz-Oxlade. And we often have our children in toe, and by doing that we are teaching our children how to spend, and ultimately moulding their money personality.

8 | | spring 2012

And that is where Vaz-Oxlade’s book Smart Money Kids$ comes in. Every parent wants to raise independent, strong children; or rather we want to raise responsible, independent, and strong adults. Teaching our children about money and how to properly spend, save and share is so important but with so many of us struggling with our own finances it can be hard to do. Vaz-Oxlade says a healthy, balanced attitude towards money beings in childhood. “You have to give kids enough money so they can actually work with it, incorporating the lessons you want to teach.” And that is why Vaz-Oxlade says allowance is an essential way to deal with money and children. The beauty of this book is that while teaching our children about money, we learn about being more responsible with our own money. As parents we need to learn to be good “money role models”. Money can be a stress-free part of life. According to VazOxlade, when women take responsibility for their financial futures, they demonstrate to their children how to be financially-strong, independent men and women. •







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2:50:36 PM


| by Christina Stewart

Going Green: One Product at a Time During my third pregnancy I decided to make a concerted effort to limit my exposure to toxins and carcinogens. I avoided bus fumes, paint fumes and smoke fumes with a vengeance. I made my own household cleaners, ate organic meat and produce and began stocking the nursery with natural baby products. I was bragging to my husband about all the positive changes I had made one night while washing my face before bed. He agreed with me and in the same breath asked what was in my night cream. I looked at the ingredients listed on the label but I couldn’t really answer. “Sure the ingredients are listed on the bottles but being able to decipher what they really are is the challenging part’” says Tanis Frame, an Environmental Consultant. Frame is also a mom of two young children and the creator of Mamamaven which offers a line of environmental home parties dedicated to helping moms weed through the eco-information available.

So, What Are Those Ingredients? According to Environmental Defence, the group behind the BPA ban in baby bottles, “before you even make it to the breakfast table, you’ve probably used almost 15 personal care products with over 100 toxic ingredients.” BHA & BHT, DEA ingredients as well as Coal Tar Dyes can be found in hair dyes or moisturizers and cosmetics have been linked to cancer; Parabens are used in a variety of make-up as preservatives and possibly interfere with male reproductive functions; Siloxanes are used in a wide variety of beauty products to moisturize and smooth, they are also suspected to be an endocrine disrupter and reproductive toxicant. This overwhelming and dizzying array of chemicals can be found in any make-up bag or bathroom cabinet across North America and sadly, this list is just the tip of the proverbial melting iceberg.

Fragrance Is the Enemy After this investigation into the contents of some of my regular health and beauty products and coming up horrified at the chemicals I was “cleaning” my body with I was determined to find easy and cost-effective alternative solutions. “The first step is eliminating scent,” says Frame. “Fragrance is not considered a

personal care item and therefore the ingredients don’t have to be listed. They are also proprietary so the companies aren’t going to divulge that info, but it’s nasty stuff in there; just nasty.” The “nasty stuff” Frame is referring to includes, among other chemicals, phthalates which is a compound reported to be a possible cause of reproductive or developmental problems because it mimics a natural hormone.

Navigate What’s on the Shelf Frame suggests that your second step is to ask the right people for help. “Places like Finlandia, Choices or Whole Foods have great Health and Beauty sections,” says Frame. “The folks that work there are extremely knowledgeable. They can point you in the right direction, and it’s a free service.” According to Frame words like “organic,” “natural,” “botanical” or “pure” aren’t regulated in Canada so essentially they don’t mean anything. “These products may be marketed with these healthy sounding words but can still be loaded with known carcinogens,” says Frame.

What to Make? Brittany Gardner, an Abbotsford mom of two tries to embrace green living. “After reading an article about researchers finding parabens in breast-tissue, I checked the labels on my toiletries and was shocked at how many contained them.” Although admittedly Gardner doesn’t use as many “green” products as she would like she has found one simple environmentally friendly beauty fix. “Moisturizer is something I use daily so finding a

natural one was especially important to me,” says Gardner “For the last few years I have ditched the pricey creams and instead use just a bit of organic olive oil on my skin as needed. “Another homemade moisturizer is oatmeal. Fill an old (but clean!) sock with oatmeal to throw into your bath or to wet it enough to produce milky water which you can rub on dry skin. Frame also suggests grape seed oil as a natural moisturizer.

What About Your Period? Every wondered what your tampons and pads contained? Madeleine Shaw can tell you, she is the creator and owner of Lunapads a line of reusable, environmentally friendly, non-toxic menstrual products. “Disposable pads, apart from being made from plastic and bleached pulp, can contain Super Absorbent Polymers (SAPs) which can irritate the skin. Certain brands of disposable pads have been associated with contact dermatitis due to the repeat exposure to these chemicals,” says Shaw. “Disposable pads and tampons may both contain “Fragrance” (see above) and tampons may contain traces of dioxin as well as pesticide residues.

Going Green Resources

Looking for ways to reduce toxins in your everyday life? Check out these helpful websites:

• David Suzuki Foundation - website dedicated to protect the diversity of nature and our quality of life, now and for the future.

• Just Beautiful - dedicated to helping Canadian Women remove toxins from make-up.

• Skin Deep Cosmetic Database - provides practical solutions for families to reduce exposures to chemicals.

• Mamamaven - provides workshops on educating parents of chemicals found in common household products.

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I have since taken harsh beauty products off my weekly grocery list. I now either source out kinder, gentler products or I make my own. While my body isn’t cleaner than it was before I started on this quest, it certainly isn’t any dirtier but it is healthier and that makes me breathe easier! • Christina Stewart lives in Burnaby with her three kids ages four, two and two months. You can find them huddled in the library pouring over the latest books or traversing the local trails, behind their Burnaby home.

spring 2012 | | 11

Call 604.539.8322


| by Particia Cheuy

Liquid Candy:

What Are Your Kids Drinking? This article completes our 4-part series on kids and junk food.

I first heard the term Liquid Candy as a title of a report published in 1998 by the Center for Science in the Public Interest that looked at the rising levels of soft drink consumption and the related health concerns. Reprinted and updated in 2005, the report is a captivating read. The term Liquid Candy stuck with me ever since as it so aptly captures what the majority of the popular beverages being given to our children truly are. Health aware parents and caregivers tend to watch quite closely what their children eat and are mindful of the importance of setting a positive example in the food choices they make for themselves. But when it comes to beverages, the tendency is not to pay as much attention. Perhaps it is because they are in liquid form that we don’t think beverage choices add up as readily as solid food calories. But they do. And an ever-expanding offering of fruit juices, flavoured waters, fizzy drinks and others in colourful packaging is attracting our attention in a big way. In 2006, the Canadian beverage industry reported sales of 80 billion dollars. The beverage market is a hot one, and sales are skyrocketing with each passing year. Due to expanding portion sizes and high sugar content, we need to take stock of how much we and our children may be drinking. In the 1950s, the average serving of pop was one of those small glass bottles. It contained 6.5 ounces. By the 1960s, this had almost doubled to the taller 12 ounces (355 ml) bottle. In the 1990s, pop became the beverage of choice for most people and the average portions went up to 20 ounces (591 ml). That 20 ounce bottle of pop contributes about 15 teaspoons of sugar to the diet. If you drank one 591 ml bottle of pop every day for one year, you would be consuming an incredible 25 kilograms (55 pounds) of sugar over the course of a year. Some people drink much more than this. Often people are surprised when they hear how much sugar is in a sweetened drink. A small carton (250 ml) of unsweetened,

100% real juice will give you 6 teaspoons of natural sugar. The juice drink bottles at 414 ml have double that at 12 teaspoons. If you choose a 600 ml bottle of fruit juice you will be getting 21 teaspoons of sugar. (More if it’s a sugar-sweetened fruit “drink”.) This is the same sugar content as a medium “slushy” drink. The large size “slushy” drink contains 32 teaspoons of sugar and the extreme size (almost 2 litres) has 48 teaspoons of sugar. This is equal to three cups of table sugar. Soft drinks are not just the fizzy soda pops. They also include things like lemonade, iced tea, sports drinks and any fruit juices that are labelled as cocktail, nectar, beverage, drink or blend. If the first two ingredients are sugar and water, you are essentially serving a soft drink.

High sugar consumption is contributing to the alarming increase in obesity among children, adolescents and adults. In general, consumers have little knowledge of how much sugar they are consuming or how much they are giving to their children. It is important to read the list of ingredients. If sugar is the first ingredient, adults need to decide whether to offer it to children or at least limit how often it is served. High sugar consumption is contributing to the alarming increase in obesity among children,

adolescents and adults. For every serving of sugar sweetened drink consumed daily, the risk of overweight increases by 60%. Other health effects related to high sugar consumption and obesity are heart disease and type 2 diabetes. In children, sugary drinks replace high nutrient choices like milk and fill children up so they do not eat enough healthy foods. This can seriously affect a child’s nutritional health. Become aware of how much sugar you and your family are consuming in the form of liquid calories.

Choose Healthier Beverages for Your Family I mp or ta nc e of H 2O:

After 2 years of age water should be the main drink for children

G ot M i l k ?:

Children age 2 to 5 years old still need two servings of milk daily

A Special Program Just For Children From 6 Months To Walking This parent participation class focuses on fostering appropriate physical development during this period of rapid growth while creating a community of support for caregivers. Children explore weekly movement themes, simple games and activities in a relaxed, child-led environment. Register now and get them started for life! 604.568.9690 837 Beatty Street, Vancouver, BC

E at R ea l F r u it:

Cut whole fruit into kid-friendly portions. Fruit offers more fibre and natural fruit juices

L i m it Ju ic e:

Juice is not a requirement for good health and should not be introduced in the first two years of a child’s life

S od a Pop i s a T reat:

Save soda pop for special occasions

Source: Eileen Bennewith, B.Sc., RD (Registered Dietitian), Community Nutritionist with

Kids Physio Group provides private physiotherapy treatment to babies, children and teens in Metro Vancouver. Our Baby Milestones Program aims to ensure that your child’s gross motor development is closely followed throughout their first year and a half. Our physiotherapists are keen to share their specific knowledge of:

• Infant positioning and handling • Fundamental movement patterns • Gross motor skill achievement & appropriate milestone • • • achievement dates

Monthly check-ups will:

• Provide fun and purposeful play ideas that are suitable • to your child’s stage of development

the Vancouver Island Health Authority. Eileen can be reached at

• Help to prevent common infant • development conditions such as •plagiocephally and torticollis • Patricia Chuey is a registered

• Keep you, the parent, in tune •with your child as they grow

dietitian, media consultant and Mom. She can be reached through or @patriciachuey on Twitter.

spring 2012 | | 13

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| by Daniela Ginta

Parenting Goes Techy: There’s an App for That!

Imagine waking up every day to a cute little update of your unborn baby, from the very beginning of your journey together to the big day. Pregnancy and parenting books still remain the reference for mothers and parents in general, but in our fast pace we’re growing accustomed to electronic gadget sidekicks such as the iPhone and the iPad or PlayBook. Whether you’ve been using them for a while or just discovering them now, these devices can add convenience and convenient information on the go which efficiently complement moms’ busy lifestyle.

Pregnancy Helpers It all starts with getting pregnant. If you’re like me and forgetting to write down the first day of your period almost every time, trying to pinpoint ovulation day may resemble a fool’s errand. Worry not. Apps like Ovulation ($4.99 in App Store) will tell you all you need know about your cycle, predict ovulation and also suggest which days are best for conceiving a boy or a girl. Another similar app for android which comes free or $2.99 for the premium version is Pink Pad. Once you get the confirmation that you’re pregnant, you will want an app like iPregnancy ($3.99). From the pregnancy calendar describing the development of your baby including 2D and 3D photos of the baby at every developmental stage, keeping track of mom’s weight and doctor visits, baby’s heartbeats and kicks, plus journaling about pregnancy and as accurate as possible delivery dates, you’ll have a great helper provided that you don’t lose your phone. Baby names catalog and a help feature for dads are included. Combine that with a Prenatal Smart ($0.99) or Pregnancy Safety ($0.99) and you’ll know what foods are safe to eat and which are best left untouched. If you’re thinking fitness during pregnancy you may look at Pilates for Pregnancy ($9.99). Detailed recommendations for every trimester and to-do lists for every stage will be worth the investment. If you need a separate app for dad alone, mPregnancy app ($2.99) tells your man all he needs to know about the baby and how to prepare for the big change. An understatement if you will.

New Moms’ Cheat Sheet Remember switching your bracelet or ring from one side to the other in order to keep track of your baby’s nursing? Good times, no question about it and there is a certain romance in there, but confusion as well. Imagine having an assistant doing it for you. Apps like Mommy’s Milk ($0.99) will do just that. Should I mention the night light feature? It’s there. Similar applications such

16 | | spring 2012

as Nursing Tracker ($7.99) and Diaper Tracker ($1.99) were designed to make the haze of those first few weeks clear away. For a comprehensive help around the clock try Eat Sleep Pro ($3.99, free for the ad version). It will help you keep track of feeding, changing diapers, sleeping patterns, and there’s also note-taking features plus daily, weekly and monthly totals to help with the big picture. And who doesn’t need that?

Apps to Make A Parent’s Life Easier Yes, they are out there! Think GroceryIQ (free) that will help guide you with shopping, from scanning items, making lists, getting coupons and sharing the list with your partner. Think Personal Finance (free) or iReconcile ($2.99) and monitor your spending. Alright, almost set here. Add All Recipes Dinner Spinner to that (free) or How to Cook Everything ($4.99) and you’ve got the menu figured out too without mix-ups of any kind. But alas, the world of moms is more than cooking and shopping and keeping track of finances. No, it really is. If a regular fitness routine is on your mind then it should be on your phone and/or tablet too. Good options include Women’s Health Workouts ($1.99) with a database of 16 workouts and 130 exercises and training logs and timers and Hot Body Yoga (free). An include-all-family-members app like Smoothie Selector ($.99) can help you find the best smoothie for yourself after a workout and options for breakfast or just dessert, with nutritional information for each recipe. And there’s more. Kindle app (free) is like a mini-library and for the mother of all tasks done and done right there’s Taska ($4.99). Last but not least, let’s think safety. WebMD Mobile (free) guides you through medical information, from checking symptoms to treatment possibilities and local listings of medical professionals. Not at all a replacement for medical consultations but rather a convenient guiding tool for those times when you to access information quick. Once that’s figured out you can move on to the fun activities with CraftFinder (free).

Fun With Bigger Screens Think waiting times at the dentist or at the doctor’s office. Think adding some extra spice to those afternoons where nothing would do but an interactive mom-and-me reading time. Enter apps for iPad such as StoryBox ($3.99), stories like And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street – Dr. Seuss ($2.99) or Cat in the Hat – Dr. Seuss ($3.99). Or educational resources like ABC Phonics Long Vowel Words (free) and My Book Tree (free) both complementing reading time at school and at home. A great free app for iPad and iPhone alike is Epicurious Recipes & Shopping List, an award winning app that helps moms with planning meals, starting with a shopping list and with interactive features such as recipe exchange with other app users.

Bottom Line Life is fast paced, it’s a fact. Parents will forever love cuddling with their children and reading books just like mothers will love their parenting books and magazines which will become faithful friends along the way, but it is nice to know that useful apps are just a few screen taps away. They are easy to use; fit quite well in a busy lifestyle and ultimately may help moms make more time available for playing with their children or sinking into a sofa for a good read. What’s not to like about that? •




2:10 PM

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Trusting Mom, Dad & Jimmy Kimmel Late night TV talk show hosts aren’t generally the first people who spring to mind when you’re asked to name your favourite parenting expert. Dr Spock? Sure. Your mom? Maybe. Jimmy Kimmel? Not even close. But in terms of being in tune with the current parenting zeitgeist, Jimmy may have an edge on both Dr. Spock and Grandma. Turns out that recently he’s been doing some groundbreaking qualitative research on the effects of breaking children’s trust. Not that he may see it quite that way, of course. For the benefit of those of you for whom staying up to watch late night TV is a mere distant memory, here’s the background: last fall, shortly before Hallowe’en, Kimmel issued a challenge to parents watching his show, asking them to tell their children on the morning after trick or treating that mom and dad had eaten all their candy, and to film their reactions and post them on YouTube. The resulting videos instantly went viral, generating close to 9 million views in 48 hours, and inspiring Kimmel to do a follow-up study at Christmas. This time he asked parents to give their children bad gifts. Parents again obliged, and viewers were treated to the sight of children opening Christmas packages containing some pretty disappointing

items -- rotten bananas, half-eaten sandwiches and raw potatoes. I’ll admit it – I found the videos pretty funny. I particularly enjoyed the little girl who got the bitten sandwich patiently explaining to her mother that yes, she likes her mother’s cooking, but what she had meant was cooked dinners -- like Hot Pockets -- not sandwiches. But clearly, intentionally deceiving your children in order to film their reaction and then putting the results online for the amusement of strangers is never going to become a recommended parenting practice, and the parenting blogs and online news sites went wild debating the issue. Was it just goodnatured teasing, the kind that goes on in families all the time?  Was it a stinging social commentary on our over-materialistic culture? Or was it abusive? While I’d certainly hesitate to go so far as to label the videotaping parents abusive, I have to side with the anonymous online commenter who put it this way: “The point is breaking your kids’ trust for your amusement at their hurt feelings. Not cool.”  Not cool, and also not smart parenting. Kimmel’s growing video library of disappointed children could be useful fodder for a group of researchers at Concordia University in Montreal, who are investigating how and when children develop the ability to distinguish between someone who is trustworthy and someone who isn’t – and what they do with that knowledge.    According to their most recent study, babies as young as 14 months are able to make the basic distinction as to whether an adult is reliable or not. And that’s something that parents need to pay attention to. In their two-stage study, published in the journal Infant Behavior and Development, the Concordia researchers sat down with babies and showed them canisters that either did or did not contain a small toy.  The researchers opened the canisters, looked inside and reacted with surprise and delight to what they saw. Then they showed the contents to the babies – and while in half the cases the babies were shown a toy inside the canister, the other half saw that the researcher had in fact fooled them, by pretending to be enthused over an empty container. It’s part two of the research that gets really interesting.  In the second stage the same researcher does something odd in front of the baby – she turns on a touch lamp with her forehead. Then she tries to get the babies to imitate her and use their foreheads to turn on the lamp. And guess what? Infants who were tricked in the first stage of the experiment, were a lot less likely to copy the researcher’s antics with the lamp.

18 | | spring 2012

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Just one-third of the babies who were tricked with the empty canister could be persuaded to imitate the researcher. In contrast, fully two-thirds of the infants who were not tricked went ahead and turned on the lamp with their foreheads, just like the researcher did. Clearly, the babies who had been deceived decided not to pay attention to someone who had been exposed to them as untrustworthy. They learned from their experience, and they applied that learning, by ignoring the researcher’s subsequent actions and attempts to persuade them to imitate her. Diane Poulin-Dubois is the lead researcher for the study, and she admits the results are surprising, but says they fit with prior research that shows that babies are capable of selective learning – that is, they can choose not to learn from someone who has been shown to be inaccurate in their information.   “Infants already show competence in the emotional domain. They experience emotions early and see people display emotional expressions all the time. They also know that gaze is referential, that is, if you look inside a container, there is something to look at. Thus they can easily detect unusual behaviors in that domain,” Poulin-Dubois explains. So, what does all this mean for parents, for Jimmy Kimmel, and for the future of funny-kid online videos? While the findings by Poulin-Dubois and her fellow researchers may seem a little arcane – unless you’re particularly intent on teaching your children to turn on lamps with their foreheads – they’re a useful reminder that although children are predisposed to trust adults, and particularly their parents, that kind of trust isn’t guaranteed. And eroding that trust, whether it’s by lying to kids and filming their reactions, or through more mundane but much more common violations – always being later than we said we would, reneging on our promises, arbitrarily changing our minds – has consequences to our relationships with our children. The less trustworthy we show ourselves to be, the warier they become of us, and the less likely to learn from us, to accept our advice or agree with our opinions. It’s dismaying to think that, if Jimmy asked the same parents who filmed their children at Hallowe’en and Christmas to try a similar prank at Easter, those children might prove much more difficult to fool. Not because they’re older and wiser, necessarily, but because they’ve learned to be suspicious of what their parents tell them. Turns out the joke is on the parents. • Marilee Peters is the Acting Executive Director of the BC Council for Families a non-profit organization providing information, resources and education for parents and families. Cara Hykawy is a Communications Assistant at the BC Council for Families. She is currently studying psychology at the University of British Columbia.


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education expert

| by Natacha V. Beim

Q: “ My

husba nd a nd I b ot h wo rk . W h at can we d o t o m ake s u re we a re setting as i d e va l u a bl e t i me f o r o u r k i d s ? ” Claudia, Working Mom, Vancouver

The 20-Minute Commitment

That Will Make You a Better Parent


While becoming a better parent is one of the most admirable resolutions one can adopt, it is also one of the most difficult. Unlike diet or exercise, the outcome of improved parenting is not solely dependent on the parent’s actions, but also on the child’s reaction.

4.Plan for a One-On-One Time

Not only that, but children’s reactions change as they grow. Add in the fact that no two children respond to one parenting technique the same way, and the thought of solving the perfect parent equation seems near impossible. However, there is one time-tested way for parents to strengthen relationships with their children and that is – quality time. Between soccer games, text messages, doctor’s appointments and lunches, it’s easy for quality time to get cut. Below are 10 tips to ensure it doesn’t.

It’s important that each child gets their own 20 minutes with you. This may require some planning, particularly for parents with more than one child. If one child hasn’t yet developed the emotional maturity to understand without feeling rejected, in the beginning you can invite them in to join in and continue your oneon-one time with your other child later. Eventually when your children learn they’re each entitled to one-on-one time, it will become easier for them to respect the time you share with their siblings. Why one child at a time? We are often guilty as parents of grouping our children together and not seeing them as individuals. Children want you to know them deeply, and understand that they are different from their siblings. Spending one-on-one time sends a strong message that says “you are important to me; I love you; I support you.”

1.Commit to 20 Minutes

5.Choose Interactive Activities

During this time let your child choose the activity whether it’s a game, a walk or a chat. Be mindful of your child’s regime by choosing a time of day that is also good for them. During these 20 minutes see the world from your child’s perspective. Listen with empathy, even during play. Why 20 minutes? We all have it. This time is dedicated to just you and your child. It’s meant to form an unbreakable bond between the two of you. Of course, you can spend more time with your child if you want to, but commit to at least 20 minutes.

It’s better to play a video game together, where you can interact with each other, than to watch television, which offers no opportunity to talk, however, choosing an outdoor activity offers greater opportunity for actual interaction. Spending quality time with your child means participating. The more you take a genuine interest in your child, the closer you will become.

2.Participate in Your Child’s World If your child does not know what they want to do, suggest going to their room where you can discover an activity together. Good activities are ones where you can still talk. Drawing or coloring together, playing a board game, building or baking are all good options, as long as they’re of interest to your child. If your child is older and this is a new habit for you, you may be met with some resistance and suspicion. Persevere until you find a way. Asking your child to take a walk with you is a great chance to open the communication channels. Or ask if you can help them organize or re-decorate their room. Choose any activity that allows you to share a piece of their world.

3.Be Present Forget your own schedule for these 20 minutes. Don’t text or talk on the phone. Don’t check on dinner or laundry. Focus on your child and nothing else.

22 | | spring 2012

6.Separate Work from Play These 20 minutes are not well spent driving your child somewhere, or watching your child’s football practice. Scratch out tucking your child into bed at night or even helping them with their homework. The best thing to do during these special 20 minutes is play. If you don’t like to play, learn how. Ask your child to teach you a new skill like how to ride a skateboard. There is nothing children love more than teaching their parents something new.

7.Be a Friend, not a Parent Refrain from teaching and giving advice, unless you are asked. Treat your child like you would your best friend. Would you constantly tell your friend how to do things? No. You would respect them and view them as a capable person who can make their own decisions. This is how you should see your child. Take this time to learn from your child and find out what they are thinking about, what their dreams are. Don’t assume you know better as the parent.

ASK: Natacha Do you have an educational

q uestion for Natacha? Email her at

a sk natacha@ur ba nbaby.c a 8.Keep a Secret

If your child shares something with you during this time, don’t bring it up in an argument later or worse tell other people about it. Respect your child as you would any other friend.

9.Make it a Habit By committing to this one simple habit, you will notice a much stronger connection to your children. Twenty minutes is the minimal amount of time you should spend with each child, each day. Even if you have three children, this amounts to one hour of your time. As a parent you will develop great confidence and pride in knowing no matter how busy life gets, you make time for your children.

10.Communicate Change If you have to work late or be away from home, make sure your children know when and how their time will be made up. This tells your children their one-on-one time is an important commitment for you. Likewise, if your child is busy with friends, don’t interrupt their play by getting involved, or ask the friend to go home so you can spend time with your child. Instead, offer to bring a homemade healthy snack, or something else that will show your child you care about them. For working parents, committing to this time will ensure you have a balance between home and work. It will also ease the guilt of having to say “no” when your child wants to play and you have to make dinner, for instance. For parents who stay at home, these 20 minutes will ensure you are consciously making the effort to do something your child chooses to do, not something you have planned or need to do. If your spouse wants to do this as well, they can do it at a different time than you, or spend 20 minutes with one child while you spend 20 minutes with the other. As simple as this resolution may sound, it is extremely effective if you do it well. Consistently spend 20 minutes each day with your child and you’ll be surprised at how much closer you feel and how much easier it becomes to understand each other’s point of view in any situation. • Natacha V. Beim is a writer, speaker, teacher, and the founder of Core Education & Fine Arts Junior Kindergarten schools ( You can reach her at

spring 2012 | | 23


| by Allison M. Layne

Saving For Your Child’s Future Without Breaking the Bank

One of the most common questions I get from parents who are looking into what an RESP account can do for their children is, “How do I go about starting one, and when is the best time to get started?” My recommendation is the sooner you start, the better. By starting early, you are able to maximize your investment period and the Government programs which are available to you. A RESP is a registered savings account which allows money deposited for a child’s post-secondary education to grow tax free until the child enters an accredited college/university, CEGEP (in Quebec), trade school or apprenticeship program for studies.

There are three types of plans available: Family (for one or more children), Individuals or Group. By contributing to an RESP, you are able to budget for the expenses related to your child’s post-secondary education. The Government of Canada also offers some incentives for RESP accounts. One of them is the Canada Education Savings Grant (for children 17 and younger) which provides a 20% savings grant for all contributions


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of up to $2,500 each year, to a lifetime maximum of $7,200 per child. There is also the Canada Learning Bond (for children 15 and younger), which is available for children born after December 31, 2003 and is available for parents who qualify for the National Child Benefit supplement. Upon opening a RESP account, the Government could provide an initial $500 towards the RESP, with additional payments of $100 per year, until age 15. A RESP account can be opened with a bank/credit union, a group plan dealer, or an individual insurance agent/broker who is licensed to sell registered plans. Determining which of these providers to use for your RESP account will be an individual decision based on your needs and investment knowledge. Some key documentation needed to open an RESP account is having a valid social insurance number for yourself and each child who is going to be the beneficiary of the RESP proceeds, a primary document (such as a Canadian birth certificate, certificate of Canadian citizenship) which proves your identity and status in Canada. All other documentation for applying for an account will be provided by your RESP provider. Now that we have determined what a RESP is, the types of plans available, and the RESP providers who can assist you in opening one for your child, it’s important to remember to start as early as possible. For many families, finding the extra money to contribute towards a RESP is difficult. Making your financial goals part of your monthly budget, will help in putting you on the right track. In addition to parents and guardians being eligible to open a RESP account, family members/relatives, and even friends can open or contribute towards a RESP account. So if another toy isn’t needed for your child’s birthday, or you wish to limit gifts received during the holiday season, don’t be shy about asking for a contribution towards his/her RESP. For more detailed information on RESP accounts and additional educational programs, go to a registered website from the Government of Canada. • Allison Layne is an advisor with Sun Life Financial and has worked in the Insurance Industry for over 20 years. When she’s not helping families meet their financial goals, she loves to spend time outdoors

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24 | | spring 2012

CEO mom

| by Rowena List

5 Tips on Organizing

Your Life to be Stress Free How often is your child late for daycare or story time at the library? How often are you late for work, a class or have trouble making a simple coffee date. Rushing around is not the best way to start your day or theirs. How often do you forget important items in this rush and not to mention being able to have a healthy breakfast? Children bring loads of joy. However, they also bring extra planning. Try these simple tips on how to organize your family so that everyone is happy and stress free.

Tip 1: Take 15 Minutes a Day Take 15 minutes in the evening to get yourself, your lunch, your baby’s diaper bag or your child’s backpack ready for the next day. Once your child is old enough get them ready by delegating small jobs. For example, they can unpack their own backpacks and refill them with the items needed for the next day.

Tip 2: A Place for Everything How many toys do your child have? Does it look like a toy store in your home? “Less is more”. The best way to keep your child and their toys organized is to have “zones.” You can make a reading zone, an arts and craft zone and play zone. If toys are in three different zones within your home it can be comforting for your child to know where they should go and play. It also makes it easier on you and them when it comes time for tidying up.

Tip 3: Clean Up, Clean Up Once your child has finished playing with their toys get them involved with clean up. Give them a red basket and ask them to pick up all their red toys. Alternatively, give them a blue basket and ask them to pick up all their books. This makes tidying up simple and part of playtime. If you ask your child to tidy up their toys, they may be overwhelmed but by breaking the chores into small bite-size tasks, it becomes more manageable and fun.

Tip 4: Reduce, Reuse and Donate Does your child have too many clothes, toys, books and craft supplies? Is it close to their Birthday or Christmas? If so, this is

TODAY IS A GOOD DAY TO MAKE THINGS SIMPLER Reaching your financial goals is easier with a plan. Know your options.

Allison Layne GBA

604-607-3970 ext 2275 #201 - 3240 Mt. Lehman Road Abbotsford, BC V4X 2M9

serving Abbotsford and surrounding Vancouver area Mutual funds offered by Sun Life Financial Investment Services (Canada) Inc.

© Sun Life Assurance Company of Canada 2012

the best time to teach your child how to clear the clutter and donate their clothes and toys. Donate or sell anything that your children have out grown; toys, clothes and furniture. Keep your child involved so they understand the importance of donating their outgrown items. Remember to donate items before they are no good to anyone. A crib sitting in storage that is 12 years old is no good to anyone. Safety standards change so donating or recycling items before they end up in the landfill is a benefit to all. Some children find it very hard to part with their items, so downsizing and purging while they are sleeping or at preschool can help reduce the confusion and disappointed when outgrown items are given away.

Tip 5: Anyone Seen Picasso? How many pieces of artwork do you have? Are you saving every piece so that you can give it to your child when they leave home? I’m going to let you in on a little secret. They do not want all of that paper when they leave home. Instead save one special piece from each grade. Take photos of all the other pieces. Lay the artwork on the floor and have your child sit beside it. Take the photo and then use the artwork to wrap Christmas or Birthday presents. Your child’s artwork makes great greeting cards as well that grandparents will cherish. • Rowena List is an organizing expert specializing in home organization. She lives in Burnaby and is grandma to five grandchildren ages two to eleven years old. Rowena values the importance of building family traditions and teaching her grandchildren that organizing can be fun.

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Price: $399.99 Type: Trail/ Leisure Stroller Weight: 21 lbs Wheels: 8.5” Forever-air Wheels Child Safety: 5-point harness with shoulder pads Car Seat Compatibility: Peg Perego, Britax, Graco Handles Bars: Adjustable Storage: Back storage compartment and large basket

Features: • Patented Quick Fold Technology Fold stroller in one step • Multi-position, huge sun canopy with peek-a-boo windows • Universal accessory mounting bracket for accessories

Additional Accessiories: • Bassinet: $189.99 • Car Seat Adapter: $79.99 • Child Snack Tray: $39.99 • Rain Weather Cover: $59.99

Price: $479.99 Type: Jogging Stroller Weight: 25 lbs Wheels: 16” wheels for longer strides for running Child Safety: 5-point harness with shoulder pads Car Seat Compatibility: Peg Perego, Britax Handles Bars: Adjustable Storage: 2 interior mesh seat pockets, 1 large pocket on seatback and large Low Boy Cargo Basket underneath seat

Features: • Easy, two-step folding, lightweight frame for convenient transport and storage • Multi-position canopy with large viewing window • Accessory adapter allows for quick and easy attachment

Additional Accessiories: • Stroller Weather Shield: $54.99 • Infant Car Seat Adapter: $52.99 • Child Snack Tray: $26.99

Price: $479.99 Type: Leisure Stroller Weight: 24.3 lbs Wheels: 8” Quick Release Child Safety: 5-point harness with shoulder pads and buckle cover Car Seat Compatibility: Peg Perego, Britax, Graco Handles Bars: Adjustable Storage: Back storage compartment and large basket

Features: • Patented Quick Fold Technology Fold your stroller with one hand no matter what direction the seat is facing • Reversible seat so baby can face the parent or face outwards • Accessory adapter allows for quick and easy attachment for accessories

Additional Accessiories: • Car Seat Adapter: $79.99 • Child Snack Tray: TBA • Rain Weather Cover: TBA

2012 Stroller Shopping Guide is Sponsored by jack&lola

Stop by jack&lola and meet with Lauren, resident stroller expert for demonstrations, on these featured strollers

UPPAbaby Vista New For 2012! An innovative, universal stroller system that truly grows with your child from birth into the toddler years. Stroller adapts with accessories to accommodate a second and third child.

Price: $749.99 Type: Leisure Stroller Weight: 24 lbs Wheels: 8” front, 11” rear smooth-rolling “no-flat” foam Child Safety: 5-point harness with shoulder pads and buckle cover Car Seat Compatibility: Peg Perego, Graco, Maxi Cosi Handles Bars: Adjustable Storage: Back storage compartment and large basket

Features: • Includes both bassinet for newborn and seat - completely interchangeable and requires no fabric swapping • Bassinet is certified for overnight use because of how deep it is. Covers inside are machine washable and is 50% soy and 50% organic cotton • Adjustable hood for taller children • Convenient zip-in rain shield and mesh bug shield included • Elevated seat/bassinet height brings you closer to your child

Additional Accessiories: • UPPAbaby Vista Piggy Back: $119.00 • Child Snack Tray: $39.99 • Cup Holder: $24.99

and many others. jack&lola offers stroller demonstrations every Saturday and

Cybex Onyx The Cybex Onyx is a multi-functional city stroller. Its intelligent functions and lightweight frame make it extremely versatile, offering great comfort.

Price: $239.99 Type: Umbrella Stroller Weight: 15.2 lbs Wheels: 5.5” with rear suspension Child Safety: Central one-pull harness system is adjusted with only one hand to optimally fit the child Car Seat Compatibility: Peg Perego, Graco Handles Bars: Non-Adjustable Storage: Spacious shopping basket

Features: • One handed adjustable backrest to four positions • Rain cover and adjustable sun canopy with integrated UV protection • Converts to travel system by securing your Infant Car Seat with the CYBEX Infant Car Seat Adapter

Additional Accessiories: • CYBEX Infant Car Seat Adapter: $24.99 • Rain Weather Cover: $19.99

Sunday at 11:00pm and 2:00pm

jack&lola 135 West 1 Street North Vancouver, BC V7M 1B1 www. jack& 778.340.5225

Stroller Buying Tips What activities do you plan to use the stroller for? Consider what the main activities will be with the stroller when choosing the best model. Are you planning on using the stroller for mostly long walks and shopping or will it be use for jogging or trail walking?

What is the age of child? Strollers list their weight limits and seat back height. Will an infant and a toddler be using the stroller? Consider any future children to avoid having to spend more on a new stroller in a couple of years.

Do you need a infant car seat adapter? Depending the make and model of your infant car seat certain strollers can accommodate different models. Check with the sales representative and car seat manual to make sure your child’s car seat is stroller compatible.

Child Safety Rules: Babies incapable of holding their head up must have additional head and neck support to ride safely and comfortably. For jogging or off-road stroller use, children should be at least 6-8 months old. Please check your stroller manual for proper guidelines and safety instructions.

spring 2012 | | 29

outdoor fun

| by Michael Boronowski

Introducing Your Baby to Nature It’s good for you, good for them, and probably the best way to tire out a tot so they get a decent nap or sleep through the night. Getting outdoors and really exploring nature with your baby or toddler can seem daunting for those not adept to years of outdoor recreation. It can be tough for those accustomed to hitting the trails and beaches of the west coast as well. Most of us have spent so much time in our plethora of outdoor adventure outlets that we forget we don’t actually need that fleece, gore-tex, or all those gadgets and gizmos to get outdoors with our kids. Leading your children towards a love of nature doesn’t have to be all that complicated, or expensive. The best and simplest place to start is with a brand-new baby. As long as the weather isn’t too harsh and you’ve got a few sleepers to layer on your little one you can start out on the right foot by simply putting one foot in front of another. Getting out for a walk in any one of the many excellent parks will help you shake off that cabin fever. Armed with a blanket and almost any half-decent stroller you can wander along most of the trails that crisscross the parks around the region. If you prefer more varied terrain, you’ll want to find a decent front-pouch carrier. They’re best at this early age and allow you to keep your hands free while you tackle the steps, steeps, and more rugged Seymour and Lynne Canyon on the North Shore. Both offer easy access to excellent trails. Take your time on these first outings with your little one and if you’re new to the outdoors, start with shorter walks and work up to more adventurous outings. Keep your eyes open for clearings, good views, creeks, and interesting plant life as you walk. Exploring the little details with your child will help engage their natural curiosity as well as your own. The change of pace and focus might be difficult for those who typically enjoy the outdoors at speed, hurrying along in the name of exercise. Approach that change of pace with an open mind, and you’ll find wandering a trail with a toddler who needs to stop and inspect every twig, pebble, puddle, and “ewwwwwwww!” along the way a lot less frustrating. Once your baby is tackling tummy-time all you need are some cookies, a thermos of tea, and a blanket-and-tarp combo (a heavy-duty garbage bag under the blanket works too), and you’ve got a great little picnic where you, and your new addition can spend some time soaking up the great outdoors. That simple combination, a blanket and an inexpensive tarp, makes an excellent basecamp for outdoor adventure as your baby grows from rolling to crawling and toddling around. Compact enough to fit into a reusable shopping bag or small backpack, it’s a portable home base for your snacks and drinks as well as a

30 | | spring 2012

great starting point for your child to begin exploring nature a little more independently. As your baby becomes a toddler, the opportunity for fun in the outdoors grows at an exponential rate. Learning colours with flowers, shells, leaves, and rocks is far more fun than just sitting on the couch with a book or the ‘tube’. Exploring textures, describing things you see, and just taking time to truly pay attention to the abundance of beauty along the way is a fantastic way to bond with your child while building their level of interest and comfort in the outdoors. You local library is a great place to find pocketbooks on regional wildlife that are perfect for slow wanders along the trails of local parks. While your toddler looks at the pretty pink ones, you can remind yourself they’re called pacific bleeding hearts. Beyond just exploring wild plants, growing some of your own is a fantastic way to pique your child’s interest in living things. Gardening with a child can be tricky business, so here are a few tips to get you started. Start with plants that are quick to sprout and easy to grow, and make it part of your routine to check the progress. Mint, lavender, and rosemary are favourites because they’re easy to grow; you get to explore colour, smell, and taste. Sprout twice as many as you think you’ll need. That way when your son or daughter re-tills your plot or goes digging in your container, you can replant and reinforce the idea that plants need “gentle care”. Finally, if you’ve got a yard and you’re not planning on moving, plant a tree. Not just any tree mind you, but something good for either climbing like cherry or red maple, or producing fruit like plums or apples. As your child nears their tenth birthday, they’ll have a great tree to climb, or delicious fruit to pick from their very own tree. The best advice of all is to just get outside, have fun, and pay attention to your child. As adults we often forget how amazing and wonderful each little twig, pebble, leaf, or bug truly is. An extremely small number pose any real danger, and if you’re willing to slow down and pay attention around every corner you’ll be inspired by the wonders of nature and the curiosity of your child. • Michael Boronowski lives in Burnaby and enjoys running, biking, and climbing around the westcoast with his two-year-old daughter Lucy. Follow Micheal at

on the town

March 2012 Mar 3, 10am: 2012 Vancouver Diversity Health Fair Croatian Cultural Centre Cooking Demos, Healthy Kids Activities Zone

Mar 18, 11am: 8th Annual St. Patrick Day Parade Howe & Davie St. Celtic music groups, Scottish and Irish dancers

Mar 19-25, 12-4pm: Spring Break Scavenger Hunt Puppets & Pageantry BurnabyVillage Museum Theatre art, scavenger hunt, crafts, performances


Spring Fun! Apr 8, 10am: Hyack Antique Car Easter Parade New West Antique cars and Easter Parade

Apr 15, 10am-4pm: Mommies n Munchkins Fair, Fort Langley Community Hall Exhibitors, prizes, entertainment and food

Croatian Cultural Centre A one-of-a-kind event, for trendy baby fashions, décor and more. Community resources and support services on hand. Admission by donation to Basics for Babies Over $3000.00 in door prizes.

Gaby Davis Foundation Charity fundraiser to assist children with cancer

May 24-26, 10am:

Apr 7, 10am: Easter Fair, Surrey Museum

Apr 28, 11am - 4pm:

Springtime crafts, animals and games

Bellies to Babies Celebration

Register to attend: 604.908.8835

VanDusen Botanical Gardens Decorating eggs, crafts

April 2012

May 6, 11am-4pm:

My Girlfriend’s Night Out,

Easter Egg Hunt

Surrey Children’s Festival, Surrey Arts Centre Performances from around the world

June 2012 Jun 3, 9am: 27th Annual Child Run

Along Comes a Belly Roundhouse Community Centre


May 2012

April 21, 7-11pm:

Apr 23, 10am:


Family Fun Run 5k or 1k run to help fight childhood cancer

Find our Resource Directory at

Nina • Surrey, BC

Leah Belle, 5 years old & Arielle Rose, 3 years old 1. What is the best part of about being a Mom? Lots of Hugs, kisses and “I love you’s” 2. What is your favorite activity to do with your kids? We love having girls nights and giving each other manicures and pedicures. 3. What is your favorite television show? I enjoy reality tv shows and just started watching The New Girl! 4. What is the last book you’ve read? Sadly, it’s been awhile but PS, I Love You by Cecelia Ahern’s. I read it before the movie came out in theatres. 5. What is one product or service you can’t live without? I’m always on the go so definitely my smartphone. It lets me to keep in touch with my daughters, friends and family. 6. How do you find some “Mommy Time”? (able to find a break from the kids or take time to yourself?) I’ve recently started my own business making ice cream cake pops, which I’m very passionate about. So I find some “Mommy Time “, ironically when I’m working!

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Urbanbaby & Toddler Magazine - Spring 2012  

The resource for pregnant moms and young families with babies, toddlers, and preschoolers. Our Spring 2012 Green Issue is all about helping...