Saturday, March 27, 2010

Dealing with Food Allergies at School- How to Keep Your Child Safe

Sending your child to kindergarten or preschool for the first time is nerve-wracking enough, but when your child has food allergies, it’s even scarier. Parents with food-allergic children have many worries and concerns such as, “Will teachers know what to do if my child has a reaction at school” and “Will the parents of my child’s classmates be understanding of my child’s allergy?

Because food allergies are so common these days (more than 3 million U.S. students have food allergies), schools are growing more and more adept at how to safely deal with children with food allergies. In fact, most schools have a food allergy management policy. But what are some things you can do as a parent to try to keep your child safe at school? By working with the school’s administration and directly with your child and your child’s teacher, these are some tips to help your child stays safe:

- Make sure your child knows his or her own food allergies. If they are too young to retain this information, have your child wear a medical bracelet with his or her food allergy information on it.

- Make sure you fill out any forms asking about food allergies as thoroughly as possible. Because some classrooms are quite crowed and teachers might not know your child right away, put a picture with the food allergy forms so your teacher will immediately put a face with the allergy information.

- Tour your child’s school before the beginning of the school year and meet with both the school’s administration and your child’s teachers to discuss your child’s allergy and allergy-triggers. Also meet with any other adults that might care for your child during the school day, such as bus drivers, cafeteria workers, teachers of special classes, such as music, art or physical education, and of course, the school nurse. You never know where a food allergy might occur!

- Have your child’s allergist write out clear, specific information on your child’s allergy, instructions on how to recognize an allergic reaction, and what to do should one occur.

- Let your child’s teacher and the school administration know that you want to work with them to keep your child safe at school and that you wish to minimize the disruption in the classroom.
- Teach your child how to say “no thank you” when offered food not given from home. Also teach your child to not do “food trading” during lunch or snack.

There are so many other valuable tips on how to deal with food allergies in the school system. A few Web sites to check out are:

What are some tips you have on how to deal with food allergies at school? Please leave your tips in the comments section. We can all learn from each other!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Important Safety Messages Regarding Slings

Due to recent press about the Consumer Product Safety Commission's investigation about three infant deaths last year associated with sling-style infant carriers, we wanted to share with our customers the following information from companies whose slings we carry at Pure and Honest Kids.

Both Serena & Lily and ERGOBaby wish to let our customers know that babywearing is very beneficial for nurturing infants and for the emotional development of babies and toddlers. However, it is imperative for parents to follow all safety instructions and to use correct positioning when babywearing.

Both Serena & Lily and ERGOBaby ensure its compliance with safety regulations for all of their products.

For more safety information from Serena & Lily, please click on the following link, and then select the Important Safety Warning link.

For more safety information from ERGOBaby, please click here.

Your child's safety is our number one priority at Pure and Honest Kids. We will report any findings we discover on all safety issues regarding children and the products they use.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Slings Are All The Rage....

I have thoroughly enjoyed “wearing” my baby (i.e. using a baby carrier) since he was born. With my first child, we used a stroller everywhere we went, but this time around, I love having my little buddy right in front of me.

Slinging my baby frees me up tremendously…I have my hands available to assist my toddler when she needs my help, and it also gives me more mobility to get things done around the house. And as it turns out, I am not the only one who is enjoying one of the oldest and most widely accepted parental practices in the world.

An article in the New York Times entitled, “The Latest in Strollers? Mom and Dad,” discusses how many parents are dumping their strollers in favor of wearing their little one in a baby carrier or sling.

The article states that between 2006 and 2008, overall sales of industry-certified carriers rose 43 percent, and is now a $21.5 million dollar industry. That’s a lot of baby carriers!

You may be wondering why so many people are choosing to carry their baby in a sling or carrier? Well, there are many wonderful benefits to babywearing! Many highly acclaimed pediatricians have identified that babywearing is a good practice for babies and provides benefits that unslinged babies do not receive. Research has shown that:

- Babies who are carried in slings cry at least 40 percent less than those babies who are unslinged.

- Babywearing can help reduce colic in infants.

- Babies worn in slings show more alertness, both visual and auditory, and absorb information much quicker.

- Because your baby is close to you when worn in a sling, he or she is not scared by loud noises, thus allowing them to absorb more sights and sounds around them.

- Babywearing also helps promote speech development, as babies are exposed to more conversations and sounds when held closely to their parents.

- Using a baby sling or carrier can simply make life easier for you and your baby. It is a convenient way to breastfeed while caring for an older child, working or getting chores done around the house. It also is a great way to snuggle babies that liked to be held frequently, but it frees your hands to complete other tasks.

Are you going to join Team Babywearing? Or are you still Team Stroller? Or are you like me and think they both have a place in your life? Leave your thoughts in the comments section below.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Celebrating Baby Number Two!

More and more second time moms are having baby showers to celebrate the newest addition to the family, but often times, they don't know if they should register or what they should register for. It's all in what you feel comfortable doing, and if there are items you need to make the transition from one to two children easier, I say go for it...register away!

But...since many of your guests may have given you a gift when you were pregnant with your first child, focus on the essentials when registering for your second baby. Some items to consider registering for are:

- Diapers
- Wipes
- Gift Cards
- Daddy Diaper bag
- Burp cloths
- Bibs
- Double Stroller (Perhaps family members will pool together to get you this big item.)

Consider registering for a few outfits, too. If your second baby is a different gender than your first child, gender specific clothes are always very fun, and very necessary! Even if the gender is the same, new clothes are always a great gift idea since baby clothes become worn out so easily.

If you still feel uncomfortable about having a good ol' fashion baby shower thrown for you for your second child, there are other ways to celebrate your pregnancy. You could suggest to your gracious hosts to hold a specific themed shower, such as a book shower (guests bring children's books to build your baby's library), a diaper shower, or a frozen meal shower. All of these shower ideas would mean less expensive gifts that your guests would have to give, but all are very useful. Or you could simply have a "Baby Bash" where your friends and family come to a party in your honor, but no gifts are given.

Expanding your family is an exciting time...enjoy celebrating your new baby!