Best Halloween Costumes for Baby

It’s Halloween time! What are your kids dressing up as this season?

Thomas is going as Nemo… his best friend is going as a Shark. ( fish are friends not food)

Halloween allows itself for cute baby pictures and while the classic pumpkin is a parenting favorite, I have rounded up a few other themes that you might love.

  • The whole family can go as a “Finding Dory’ theme – Baby can be Nemo, mom is Dory and Dad is Shark! So cute!!!
  • To channel your inner ‘Khaleesi’… your baby can dress like a dragon! you know… Mother of Dragons and all! ( because Game of Thrones imitates life)
  • There’s always a sweet handmade knitted costume… a shy sweet baby lion maybe?

Where can you get these costumes you ask?

bestbabyhalloweencostumes2016

I recently wrote a piece about Best Baby Hallowen Costumes for 2016 and I thought I would share. Find the article —> here!

BOO to you!

 

 

 

 

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What’s the Best Brand of Diaper?

One of the most time consuming, expensive, ongoing and smelly purchases you have with your baby is … DIAPERS. Parents can spend a small fortune on diapers and with all the brands out there, it’s really hard to narrow down the choices. So what IS the best diaper for baby?

The New York Mom

We tried a few brands of diapers with Thomas before settling down on Target’s Up and Up brand. We loved the diapers, the simple polka dots were cute and the diaper did well for us. All the way from newborn through the pull ups.

While we are out of the diaper stages these days, I do still work in the baby and parenting industry and keeping up with the latest of everything is sorta my job.

Recently, the company I work with, TTPM.com conducted their own massive Diaper Challenge. I recruited a few of my friends with infants to help us out with this project.

So basically… this was a 30 day challenge where we put 10 of the most popular brands of diapers to the test. They went bum – to bum! We tested over 5000 diapers in a 30 day period. My sister in Law, my neighbor, my friend, a colleague.. I really pulled people from my everyday life to help with this project.

Diapers were rated on absorbency, odor,  fit/flexibility, comfort and overall performance. This was such an undertaking by TTPM but it has proven to be a great resource for new parents out there.

In the end HUGGIES  Little Snugglers won the whole thing. We do really like the Huggies Brand and it was no surprise they won.

Our personal fave is still Target’s Up and Up. They work really well, just as good as Huggies and cost less than the name brands. This post is not sponsored, I just want to share my personal brand favorite which works just as well as the name brand and is cheaper. savin you some dollar dollar bills y’all! 

You can see by the chart where some diapers stood out more than others.

TTPM DIAPER CHALLENGE

With Thomas we tried eco – friendly diapering. We did cloth diapers ONCE… i mean have you SEEN what comes out of their tiny bums! Not a good look for reusability. TTPM.com did test eco brands and Seventh Generation was the Eco brand that stood out.

What do you look for in a diaper? Is an eco brand important to you? Did you cloth diaper? I would love to know your thoughts.

Make sure you swing by TTPM.com and the TTPM DIAPER CHALLENGE for all the details including comments from the participants.

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MOST WANTED Toys for Holiday 2015

That’s right folks! Tis the Season for gifting. This year let’s avoid getting into a brawl with the other last-minute parental shoppers – over that hot toy that you child just MUST HAVE under the tree. I’ve got you covered with all the top toys, the hottest trends, the new stuff, the specialty stuff and all of it! We start this massive gifting coverage this season with one of my most favorite events in NYC every year! TTPM Holiday Showcase.  

full disclosure, i work for this company and personally review toys and baby gear. TTPM has their finger on the pulse of the toy space. Also this is not a sponsored post. Just sharing the gifting knowledge. 

The most anticipated toy showcase in NYC took place last week in Chelsea. TTPM hosted their Fall Toy Showcase for a select group of national media. The ‘most wanted’ toy list was released and some of my favorite brands and toys made the cut.

I’ve been covering toy trends for a few years and I think that this years the toy industry has hit it out of the park. The toys are smarter, better, gender neutral. The market isn’t saturated with dolls whose proportions are completely ridiculous and tech seems to be prominent but not in a – sit on the couch and play- sort of way. The TTPM Holiday Showcase had an entire ” boutique” toy section for the specialty toys. What a brilliant idea. I love speciality toys, The wooden toys, the creative DIY kits, the eco friendly toys. I love the specialty market and it was really great to see them in the showcase this year. Something for every gift list!

Thomas was my little assistant for the day and immediately took to all his favorite finds.

Lionel Trains had the classic christmas tree set up with one of their trains circling and Thomas loved this. Lionel Trains are a great brand and make quality, detailed trains for collectors and toddler. We love this brand and have an older set that we use under our tree. 

Thomas’s latest obsession has been Hot Wheels. Anything and everything Hotwheels. So imagine his excitement when he saw this huge and very impressive HotWheels garage. It holds a ridiculous number of hotwheels with all the curving racing action we expect from Hotwheels playsets. 

Don’t look behind you Thomas!

The Go Go Smart Wheels display from VTech was probably his favorite… well beside the choo choos. The PR person was so sweet with Thomas and showed him all the features. Thomas at 2 Years Old, took the remote and without so much as a prompt started making it work. He is so in tune with technology but mainly because toy companies are making it easy for little kids to handle remote controls and tech toys. 

We spent some time oohing and aaahing over the KidTrax ride on toys. Thomas was asked to drive the fire truck around the showroom…we declined eeks! . And probably saved a few lives in the process!   The DinoTrux themed toys were really cool. with lots of moving parts and changing parts and well they are dinosaurs and trucks all in one. It’s a little MOTO dream come true!

There was so much to cover at the TTPM Holiday Showcase. Thomas worked up an appetite and then circled the lunch tables until it was time to eat. Whew… all in a days work.

Here is the TTPM 2015 MOST WANTED LIST. I agree with all of these choices!

          INNOVATIONS IN CLASSIC PLAY:  

          TOYS FOR BIG KIDS: 

There ya have it!!

Also look for more The New York Mom Holiday Gift Guides coming up on the blog. I have this massive coverage planned because I know how challenging it is to navigate the world of toys. Good news is that this is a great year for innovative toys, DIY kits, toddler toys… all of it. Even the tweens and teens have a great selection this year!

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5 Must-Have items for your Diaper Bag

I am surrounded by pregnant and new mamas in my world right now and because I work in the baby gear, trend, news space… i have been busy writing a ton of articles about baby stuff. This article was originally published at TTPMbaby and I wanted to share it with my mama friends. Head over to TTPMbaby for all your baby gear reviews and tips… from me!

A diaper bag is an absolute must when you have a baby in tow. You could always just toss your baby essentials into a large tote, but a diaper bag will give you the proper compartments, cleaning options and accessories you absolutely need for baby.But don’t’ go overboard! While you might think you need to pack everything, including the kitchen sink, into your bag, this isn’t the case. I have the absolute musts to prepare you for a full day out with your babe. Whether it’s a diaper blow out, feeding time or just playtime, these essentials will have you covered. Kitchen sink on the other hand… that’s optional.

diaperbag411

Check out the top 5 essential items  you need for your diaper bag by heading over to TTPMbaby. 

 

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16 Must-Have Baby Gear Trends From ABC Kids Expo

Last month I headed off to Las Vegas – on behalf of TTPM.com – for the annual ABC Kids Expo, which provides its thousands of attendees—from businesses large and small to journalists, bloggers, and trendsetters—a sneak peek at what are sure to be some of the hottest trends and products coming to baby next year.

The event was massive and covered two HUGE floors of the Las Vegas Convention Center. I went to nearly every single booth and chatted up nearly every single vendor to hand pick my favorite finds for the show.

TTPM Baby

This year, strollers seemed to take the cake for new gear in the spotlight. And while these wheeled vehicles dominated the floor, there were other products that caught our attention at this year’s show. I have narrowed the thousands down to a fiercely curated 16 items to look out for in 2015.

Head over to TTPM to get the full scoop! It’s goood!

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The Importance of PLAY

Play time  is an essential part of childhood which truly helps foster learning and creative children who grow up to become creative and innovative adults who in turn change the world for the better.

For 2 years , I have been working at TTPM – Time To Play Mag –  the largest toy review site. Here I  review toys and baby gear and am totally invested in all things play. This has given me an amazing insight into the world of play. My desk is covered with classic toys, techy toys, apps, ipad games, dolls, puppets, trains and planes and anything you can imagine!

This job has brought me to ask the question…

When did PLAYTIME get almost eliminated in our kids lives? With the influx of ipads and apps and computers and screen time- kids don’t really get a chance to just be kids these days. While there are amazing toys which encourage imagination and classic hands on play… there is a HUGE surgence of toys which are all about the immediate gratification. The screen, the tech the lights and music and touch screen!

New York Mom

Lily is not a screen girl. which is pretty awesome…because as much time I spend on-screen – for my clients and work..etc, I am very much an outdoors gal… much like my jungle girl lily.

She’s been playing with her dolls lately. She’s 9 and she hasn’t really played with her dolls in a few months and then all of a sudden this week she picked them back up, put her dollhouses back together and is back at it. I cannot express how amazing it is to see a 9YO -who is hormonal at times and struggling with stepping up an age- to play with her dolls and go back to hands on creative play.

Toys without tech elements encourage kids to role play, tell stories, interact with each other or the parents and open up creative pathways in their brain. YES in their brain. Entire pathways can be totally shut off if kids spend too much time on ipads and watching TV.

TOYS

I spent the day watching Lily and Thomas play today and their stories and interaction are just priceless. Thomas loves trains and so does Lily. So they play trains together all the time. Thomas also has started engaging with building blocks which …again… is one of Lily’s fave activities. We end each night with a good old-fashioned game of blocks. Building castles which get knocked down, building towers and bridges and amphitheatres for the dolls to play in.

new york mom

With school being so very stressful these days… it’s important to make sure kids remember they are kids… and just play.

New York MomAnd of course having a trusty BEAST by your side is always a plus!

How about we put aside the techy stuff and just engage with our kids with a good old fashioned fort or a dollhouse or a wacky made up story. While ipads and apps and screen time is a sign of the times… good old fashioned hands on creative storytelling and PLAY never gets old.

 

 

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Armadillo Stroller REVIEW – Mama’s and Papa’s

I’ve been up to my strolling armpits with baby gear reviews over there at TTPM.

We have baby gear reviews busting at the seams and I would like to share some of my fave MUST HAVES with you here on my blog.

You should head over to TTPM ( AKA – Time To PLay Mag) for all and everything realted to play and baby.

I kinda LUUURVE the Mama’s and Papa’s Armadillo stroller. It functions as an all in one stroller and it’s pretty lightweight for lugging up subway stairs when no one helps you WITH a baby on a hip! From newborn to about 4-5 yrs this stroller will stay with you through the long haul.

Please swing by TTPM to fill all your baby gear needing ..needs!

*I work at TTPM and know waaay too much about toys and baby gear. No complaints!* 

 

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