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August, 2008 ~ Issue # 0010

August is a VERY important month. In fact, I tease my husband (and siblings) that it is the most important month of the year!

It's my birth-month. Yes, I'm turning the whopping 3-0 this year! Unbelievable. And no oh-my-goodness-the-twenties-are-gone crisis is on the horizon (so far).

So, as I continue with the status quo, here's another month of good-infant-info for you to indulge.


Treasures in this Issue...

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In Case You Missed It...

Here are some of the new articles published recently at The Essential Infant Resource for Moms that you may have missed. As always, sign up for the Infant Blog and be notified instantly of all new or altered pages!

Get the most out of this month's eZine.

Print it and read it at your leisure throughout the day.

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Your Advice is BADLY Needed

Here are the recent posts in the "Infant Advice Line". Help them out and share your advice. (Scroll to the bottom of the page to place your comments.)
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Free Baby Contest Coming!

Starting on September 1st, you will have the opportunity to enter your baby (for free) into the 2008 Baby Halloween Costume Contest. Applicants will have until October 31st to enter a photo of their baby in the contest.

I will narrow it to three finalists, and then Merry Mother's (this means YOU!) will vote on the winner in the November 4th issue. The winner will be announced on November 13th and will receive a large basket of goodies. Mum's the word on what's in the prize basket, but I'll at least admit that I'm jealous! (I'm not eligible.)

So don't miss out! Get out your camera and look through the Costume Gallery to find the perfect costume for your little winner.

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At the Subscriber-Only Page

I've added a few of my favorite baby-related YouTube vidoes for you to enjoy on the Subscriber-only page.

You can see them here.

coupon

Here's just a sampling of the coupons that are being offered for this month. To see the complete list of shopping savings, visit The Best Baby Stores Online (and Their Coupon Codes).

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UPromise

UPromise is a great way to save for your child's future college expenses. Sign up (it's free) and every time you purchase certain items (like coffee, for example) or go out to eat they will put up to 8% into a college fund for your infant.

Promotion: Sign up (by clicking on the banner below) and be entered to win in the $100,000 college sweepstakes. (It's free, so why not? I signed up!) smiley

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TinyPrints

If you've just had a baby, TinyPrints has some truly unique and adorable announcements for you to peruse. I also enjoy looking through their collection for birthday invitations, personal stationary, and special paper for our yearly Christmas letter.

Promotion: 5% off your entire order. Use code AFL2. (expires 9/30/08)

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Baby Browns

Baby Browns carries a wide array of designer baby clothes, bedding, cribs, and diaper bags. They are quite beautiful. Their men's diaper bag selection is particularly unique - no more arguing about carrying the diaper bag!

Promotion: Receive $10 off almost every item in the store. Use coupon code AFF07. Peek at what's available.

august shoes
{"Sea Charms",
50% off at IsaBooties}
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IsaBooties

Hands down, in my opinion, IsaBooties make the best baby shoes on the Web. Besides the "UltraSuede" fabric, they are super easy to put on and off, and I can buy large, and let Elena grow into them (I love that.) The soles are made from ToughTek, which grips slippery surfaces and helps keep your blooming-toddler on his feet.

Promotion: 50% off sale - no coupon code required. Click here for the main sales page, then scroll to the bottom.

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One Step Ahead

One Step Ahead is one of my top three favorite baby shopping sites on the web. In fact, several of my Best Baby Products for New Moms can be found there.

Promotion: Get 15% off orders $100 or more with code BABY15P. (Expires 9/30/08) Click here to see the amazing and unique baby products at One Step Ahead.

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eBeanStalk Toy Store

eBeanStalk has a really cool program (called "Gift Series") where they mail you a new developmentally-appropriate toy every three months. You pay once, get and get four shipments a year.

Promotion: Free shipping on all purchased Gift Series. (Expires 12/31/08) Click here to choose a gift series.

Give Me Baby Bargains!

Yes! Please notify me of new coupons
and special baby sales.

(Emails are sporadic, as coupons come in,
with a twice a month maximum.)

Please note that all fields followed by an asterisk must be filled in.
E-mail Address*

feature

Is an Ear Infection
Keeping Your Baby Awake?

An infant ear infection can devastate a goodnight's rest like few other. The spontaneous scream that emits from the previously-serene nursery can rattle you to the bones.

Getting an Earful

Ear infections are extremely common for babies and young children. In fact, nearly two-thirds of all children will have at least one ear infection by their second birthday.

Nearly 75% of all children will have had at least one infection by age 3. The "Witching Age" for an infant ear infection is 6-18 months old.

The most common ear infection for babies is an infection of the middle ear, called acute otitis media in the medical lingo.

The middle ear is an air-filled space behind the eardrum and in front of the Eustachian tubes ("you-STAY-shee-un") that connect to the back of the throat.

It is the area that holds all the tiny bones that transmit sound from the eardrum to the inner ear.

The Eustachian tubes are vital for secretions and other fluids to drain out of the ear and into the throat. In a healthy body, the tubes are allowed to drain when your baby yawns or swallows.


September's Feature Article Will Be:

Breastfeeding vs Bottle Feeding: A Fair Analysis


news
    Here are the new celebrity parents for July, 2008. Click here to see the latest celebrity baby news items, updated in real time!

  • Tony Hawk (skateboarder) a daughter, Kadence, on June 30th.
  • Nicole Kidman and Keith Urban, a daughter, Sunday Rose, on July 7th.
  • Matthew McConaughey (Sahara) a son, Levi, on July 7th.
  • Norah O'Donnell (MSNBC) a daughter, Riley, on July 5th.
  • Isaac Hanson (guitarist) a son, James, on July 1st.
  • Peter Gabrield (musician) a son, Luc, on July 5th.
  • Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt, a son, Knox Leon, and a daughter, Vivienne Marcheline, on July 12th.
  • Ingo Rademacher (General Hospital) a son, Peanut Kai, on July 11th.
  • Kathleen Robertson (90210) a son, William Robertson, on July 9th.
  • Kirk Hammett (Metallica) a son, Vincenzo, on June 28th.
  • Ryan Theroit (Chicago Cubs) a daughter, Houston, on July 14th.
  • Ethan Hawke (Gattaca) a daughter, Clementine Jane, on July 18th.
  • Xavier Nady (Pittsburg Pirates) a son, Xavier Nady VII, on July 15th.
  • Marissa Winoka (Broadway, Hairspray) a son, Zev Isaac, on July 22nd.
  • Martie Maguire (Dixie Chicks) a daughter, Harper Rosie, on July 25th.
  • London Fletcher (Washington Redskins) a son, Cortland Steele, on July 22nd.
  • Michelle Ray Smith (Guiding Light) a son, Jake, on July 8th.
  • Kyle MacLachlan (Desparate Housewives) a son, Callum Lyon, on July 25th.
  • Mary Lynn Rajskub (24) a son, Valentine Anthony, on July 24th.
  • Aaron Cook (Colorado Rockies) a son, Colton Jeremiah, on July 24th.
  • Cliff Floyd (Tampa Bay Rays) a daughter, Layla, on July 26th.
  • Ricardo Antonio Chavira (Desparate Housewives) a daughter, Belen Elysabeth, on July 26th.
  • Will MacKenzie (pro-golfer) a son, Maverick Noah, on July 26th.

Any words of wisdom for the new parents? Share your celebrity parent thoughts here.

infant activities

0-3 Months:
Mouth Music

tongue
{by Skippiholari}
Hold your infant in your lap, so she can clearly see your face. Make noises with your mouth like: kissing, clicking your tongue, making raspberries with your tongue, blowing your lips like a motorboat, gurgling, growling, cooing, whistling, singing, humming, and various animal noises.

This activity encourages sound discrimination, sound imitation and language development, and sound location.

3-6 Months:
Movers and Shakers

Sew bells, small rattles or other small noisemakers on to the outside of elastic hair "scrunchies". Lay your infant on his back on a soft blanket or in an infant seat.

Put the scrunchies around his wrists and ankles, and watch him reflexively shake his arms and legs, causing sounds. Watch as he learns how to deliberately make noises.

This activity teaches him to locate the sources of sounds, cause and effect and encourages motor control (for the left and right sides of the body).

6-9 Months: Tipsy Teeter-Totter

Seat your infant on your thigh, facing you. Hold your baby by her arms, then move your hands down the length of her arms to hold her fingers lightly.

Slowly move your leg around, try to let go of one hand, and then the other, keeping your hands nearby to catch her if she needs it. When she accomplishes balancing, praise her and then turn her so she's facing out to do play again.

This activity teaches balance, develops trust, and builds social interaction.

climb
{Sean Dreilinger}

12-18 Months:
Climb the Mountain

Gather items to climb, like sturdy couch cushions, strong boxes, small stools, chairs, etc. Arrange the items in the play area, leaving lots of space in between the items. Encourage your baby to climb up, over, and onto the items, helping where he needs assistance.

This activity builds up his gross motor skill development and encourages exploration and problem solving.

9-12 Months:
Tube Time

Set an inner tube or other swim toy in the middle of the floor. Place your baby inside.

Let her explore the tube and solve the problem of how to get out. When she manages to get out, praise her. For an extra challenge, have her climb out of two tubes.

This activity teaches problem solving, stimulates her gross motor skills, and encourages exploration.


Eventually, he may begin to lose interest in playing these games. Don't force anything. If that seems to be the case, simply try out some of the infant activities in previous newsletters.

Most of these activities were adapted from Baby Play and Learn. This book is available for purchase at the Essential Book Emporium.

heather's hints

Get Your Beauty Sleep

Tired of a waking baby at 5 am? Here's a hint to help you sleep 'til 8!

Most babies wake up at that 4-5 am time because they're hungry. Cameron (my husband) and I beat our children to it. We wake them up! and it works like a dream.

If your baby consistently is waking up at 5:00 in the morning, set your alarm for 4:45. (I know that's early, bear with me...) Feed him in the dark, while he's still groggy. The warm full tummy will lull him back to sleep.

After a few days of this, stop the 4:45 feeding and see how he does. Does he keep sleeping? or wake up? or does he roll around, giving little mini-moans, before falling asleep again?

Elena consistently sleeps until 8:30 - 9:00 in the morning because of this trick!

If you give this hint a try, don't forget to come back and report how it goes.

recalls

There have been 11 recalls since the last Merry Mother was published in July.


Baby Furniture Recalled

  • LaJolla Boat and Pirates of the Caribbean Twin Trundle Beds ~ Death of 22 month old

See Recall Report #7: Baby Furniture.


Clothing Items Recalled

  • Sun Block Jackets and Hoodies from Coolibar
  • Taggies Sleep'n Play Infant Garments

See Recall Report #16: Clothes, Shoes and Blankets


Pacifiers and Rattles Recalled

  • It's My Binky Personalized Pacifiers
  • Bright Starts "Bee" Ring Rattles

See Recall Report #11: Pacifiers and Teethers


Toy Items Recalled

  • Redcat Racing FM Remote Controlled Vehicles
  • "ItÂ’s a Girl Thing" Bracelets, Necklaces, and Phone Charms
  • Ballet Shoe Charm Necklace with Book "The Magical Ballet Slippers"
  • Children's Charm Craft Kits
  • "Faded Glory" Lip Gloss, Locket, and Bracelets at Wal-Mart
  • "Sky Scrambler" and "Sharper Image" Wireless Indoor Helicopters
  • Wooden Toys by Earthentree

See the 2008 Toy Recall Report

closing

I hope you've enjoyed reading August issue of The Merry Mother.

The next issue will be published on September 2nd. So watch your Inbox! smiley


Add Your Comments!

I'd love to hear what you thought about this issue. Did your baby enjoy the activity of the month? Did you try out this month's hint? Leave your comments and thoughts for other readers to enjoy. Due to space, I've removed the "Family Meal" portion of the eZine. If you enjoyed that section of the newsletter and want it back, let me know.


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        2. Right click, and chose "copy".

        3. Open your email message, right click and chose "paste" to insert the link into your email.


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merry mother purpose

Thank You Readers!

Thank you so much for reading and subscribing to this newsletter. It is a labor of love. I'm happy to know others enjoy reading it as much as I do writing it.

My growing subscriber list shows that you have been sharing it with your friends, and for that, I am deeply grateful. After all, this is newsletter is focused on one thing: helping us all become merrier mothers - because merry mothers = merry babies!

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P.S. Be sure to check back at The Essential Infant Resource for Moms, your friend-next-door for questions-answered, stories-told, and laughs-had.

Newsletter Archives

All the previous editions have been archived and are available for you to examine at your leisure.

You can find the link to this page at the Merry Mother Members-Only Page.


All the photos on this page can be found at www.flickr.com and were used
according to licensing requirements.