What Baby Ate: Upma (Savoury South Indian Porridge)

Little Pip is 8.5 months and has become a little beaver! In addition to chewing her crib to nothing, she uses her two bottom teeth to attack pacifiers, toys, and of course, her food.

She was never really into the idea of eating “baby food.” With Little Bear, I revelled in the chance to make him all sorts of combinations of pureed baby food. I played with flavour profiles and used my Baby Bullet all the time.  My freezer looked like something out of Pinterest. But Little Pip would much rather grab something we’re eating and gnaw away at it! Continue reading

Stylish Mommas: Tiny Teethers Review (With Giveaway and Promo Code!)

Out of all the changes to come out of motherhood, one of the least expected for me was my appearance slump.

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Arun and I when I was almost 4 months pregnant! Hair: check. Pretty earrings: check. Tiny baby bump: check!

Before having kids, I loved getting dressed up and accessorizing. I enjoyed shopping and trying on new outfits. I enjoyed taking care of myself. Now however, like so many moms out there, I end up putting myself last and everyone else first. (Come on, moms – you know you do this too!)

Continue reading

Yoga For Kids: Sing Song Yoga

If you have a dog or a child, you know how difficult it is to try to work out at home. Sure, they’re all occupied when you make up your mind to work out, but as soon as you begin, they arrive like ants to a picnic. The dog wants to lay on top of you, under you, has to go out, or wants a treat for absolutely no reason (for a good laugh, check out this video). The child wants help, has a burning question, wants to work out with you, or also wants to eat something. It’s Murphy’s Law applied to a mother’s home workout.

Usually this will make me try to schedule my workouts around when both the dog and child are sleeping, except in the case of yoga. I love doing yoga. It may sound cliché, but it’s both grounding and a great workout. During this pregnancy, yoga has been a necessity. When I don’t practice, my body feels so much worse: more soreness, more swelling, more back pain – overall, it’s not good. When I find time to practice yoga, however, a wonderful thing happens. I feel great!

Yoga is also something that both Little Bear and Ziggy love to join in on. And when I mean join in, I mean they take over my mat and both practice their downward dog! This doesn’t make for the most relaxing practice, except that now I’ve found a way to beat them at their own game! I stage my yoga practice.

Part One: Yoga for Little Bear

Part Two: Yoga for Momma Bear

(Part Three: Yoga for Ziggy, aka Doggy Savasana on Momma Bear’s mat)

For part one of my plan of attack, I had been trying to just work through some poses on my own. It never went very well, as Little Bear always wanted to join in on one of the yoga videos I would use to do my own yoga practice. However, since discovering Deb Weiss-Gelmi’s Sing Song Yoga program, Little Bear has been more than happy to have a chance to do yoga that entertains him while he practices!

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Getting ready to start the Sing Song Yoga DVD!

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The Sing Song Yoga program works through core yoga poses by introducing them through short songs sung to familiar tunes. Weiss-Gelmi has developed a DVD, app, a classroom yoga program, and also offers Sing Song Yoga classes in Grand Rapids.

The first time we worked through the DVD, Little Bear wanted to try to sing along to toddler yogaevery song and was paying close attention to what he needed to do. Since it was his first time with the DVD, he obviously couldn’t sing along to all the words and lagged a bit in terms of the moves and poses, but the difference between using the DVD and trying to get into poses without the songs was enormous! He was way more interested in achieving the correct poses and wanted to try to do more than the poses he had been previously exposed to.

The whole DVD runs for 45 minutes, but it is broken up into chunks, so you can choose to go through one section or even choose certain poses to practice. Little yoga for toddlersBear is almost 3 and a half, and enjoys working through about two thirds of the DVD. Older children would naturally be able to work through more of the DVD, while younger children would benefit from watching poses that you pick out for them. Furthermore, because the program works on the basis of song, kids can practice listening to the songs for instructions, obviously with reinforcement coming from the video itself. It even came across my mind that it would be great to have this available as an MP3 on my iPhone! That way no matter where we went, if Little Bear needed an opportunity to stretch, recharge, and burn off a bit of energy (read: road trip), we could turn on the Sing Song Yoga songs and get a little workout in! While that isn’t an option in the program, the Sing Song Yoga app makes the program totally portable and easy to stream onto any TV with HDMI adapters or Apple TV.

Yoga is not just a way of exercise, it is a lifestyle. It helps relax, calm, and soothe. It’s something that I think is extremely important to introduce children to, and the Sing Song Yoga program makes it easy, convenient, and fun to do just that right at home. I can’t wait to continue using the program with Little Bear.

What’s your favourite exercise routine to do with your children?

Deb Weiss-Gelmi kindly sent us the Sing Song Yoga DVD for purpose of this review. All opinions expressed here are completely our own

Munsch Upon A Time

When I think about the books that I grew up reading, one author that instantly comes to mind is Robert Munsch. Who didn’t love Robert Munsch growing up? And while I robert munschtook a break from Munsch as I got older and filled my bookshelves with other authors, Munsch kept writing his hilarious and lovable children’s books and now I have a whole new collection of Munsch books to discover with Little Bear! It’s wonderful to be able to share Continue reading

Teaching Kids About Culture (& An App Review!)

Teaching Kids About Culture

The average baby can lift their head briefly at 1 month old. They start babbling at 4 months. They start to walk around the age of 1. These moments go by so quickly that sometimes we lose track of all the time that has passed. Little Bear is almost 3 and a half and has so much spunk in him. He knows more than I would have imagined about the world around him and is more observant that I could ever be. And now, at 3 and a half, he has a distinct identity and personality.

Who is he?

He’s a lover of music, a little boy who loves to laugh, and a total bookworm. He’s an early bird, a chef in training, and a fan of dress-up and imaginative play. He’s also a young child who, at this stage, identifies himself only as Canadian. He recognizes the maple leaf with excitement and is proud to sport red and white on Canada Day.  This is great, except that it reminds me of one thing that he hasn’t been introduced to properly: his Indian heritage. Continue reading

3 Things Thursday: Week 8

The week has flown by and it’s already time for #3ThingsThursday – a wonderful link up hosted by Salma of The Write Balance, Raj of Pink Chai Living, and Nisha of Love Laugh Mirch!

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It dawned upon me this week that I’m 29 weeks pregnant already. That means that today I have only 74 days left until the due date! And according to Google (I don’t leave anything up to my horrible math skills), I’m in my SEVENTH month. Holy pickle, when did that happen? All of this has got me thinking about the things that I need to get done before this baby comes along. And even though I have a while yet, one of the items on my to do list is packing that hospital bag.

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Here are my three must have things in that hospital bag… Continue reading

Kids Play Cafe

As someone who works evenings and is a stay at home mom during the day, I often find I work through the nights in order to find time to get the things I need to done and also find time to do the things I enjoy. Between all of the things that I need to do, I don’t really have a regular opportunity to work during the days. Lucky for me, I think I’ve found a way to blend playtime, work time, and a bit of momma-relax time! Continue reading

Teaching Kids About Healthy Living

The act of finding balance needs to start with our children. While we may sometimes struggle to achieve balance, we need to create a generation to whom this comes naturally. And one key way to do this is to provide them with the tools needed to create a healthy lifestyle.

Where does a healthy lifestyle begin?  If you ask most people, they will start by listing diet and exercise. There may be other variables such as stress levels and amount of sleep, but it goes without question that without a balance of a healthy diet and a good amount of exercise, it becomes nearly impossible to have a healthy lifestyle.

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September Books: Week Two

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september book club_jpgYep, it’s the middle of September, and the end of our When Autumn Falls week! Not that autumn is near over…it’s just beginning, which means that we can spread out the autumn crafts, songs, and learning all season!

Little Bear and I had a great week with this book.  Here are some of the things that we got up to…

(For a full rundown of the When Autumn Falls activities, check out our September books page.) Continue reading

Fizzing and Foot Painting

Last week was all about The Foot Book for our Toddler Book Club!

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Between reading it, singing the hokey pokey, and tickling 10 little piggies, we managed to get some time to have fizzy fun and some stomp painting!

In our last book club post I mentioned a fun baking soda and vinegar activity that I found over on Toddler Approved. Little Bear had a blast with this activity and it was something he had never tried before!

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Materials needed:

  • large shallow dish or tray
  • baking soda (enough to cover the bottom of the dish)
  • vinegar in a spray bottle or eye droppers
  • food colouring (optional)
  • toys with feet

Directions:

  1. If using, combine water with colouring.  Put baking soda in dish.
  2. Invite your little one to play with the toys in the baking soda.  Point out the footprints and talk about the different sizes and shapes that they are.  Finish off with having all the toys standing up in the baking soda.

When ready, invite your little one to spray the vinegar on top of the feet of the toys.

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Another equally messy and fun activity that we did yesterday was our foot stomp painting! We got out some craft paper, some paints, and set ourselves up outside to make a foot painting! The aim of this is fun, nothing that you might necessarily frame as a keepsake.  Be prepared for lots of giggles when you paint your little one’s feet, paint everywhere, and lots of fun to be had.  Tip: Keep the dog away from the paint! Our dog secretly thinks he’s Picasso, but no one wants to clean paint off of paws!

 

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Here is our finished product:

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We also played our own version of Simon Says while painting this, with me giving commands and Little Bear following. Commands including marching, jumping, stomping, stepping with his left foot, standing on his right foot, etc.

If you have a nice flat driveway, this would be a great place to do this activity. It was a bit hard keeping the craft paper on the grass (we used painter’s tape, which worked for a bit, but didn’t hold up with our Simon Says activity).

Overall, the activities this week were a great way to practice different foot-based activities and left vs. right.

How do you like to practice left and right with your little one?