Thursday, June 24, 2010

Elimination Communication (EC) Support Group

EC Support Group at Baby aWEARness
Sunday, June 27 at 11:00 a.m.

We talk about diapers in every shape, size, and form every day, every hour but what happens when baby is ready to move up to the next step in life?

Find out how you can make potty training easier for you and your little one at our EC support group led by our veteran mom and team member, Holli Shiro. Some of you may remember that we held our first meeting way back in February, and we are hoping to make this a monthly discussion forum for all parents. Join us this Sunday to learn as well as share what you may already know.

We can help you make this often seemingly formidable task less stressful by presenting tips and suggestions as well as introduce you to eco-friendly options for potty training.

Oh, our babies grow up so fast, don't they?

Monday, June 21, 2010

June's Olelo Noeau by Mele

“Pipili no ka pilali I ke kumu kukui”
olelo noeau 2662

This Hawaiian Proverb, or olelo noeau means, “the pilali gum sticks to the kukui tree.” (Pukui 1983). 

This proverb is often used when referring to the strong bond between a child and a loved one. Whether it be a grandparent, parent, an aunty or uncle, it usually speaks of the bond between generations. As I mentioned before, I was born and raised on the island of Maui. Every summer my children are blessed with visiting their grandparents. And in return it is definitely a break for me =). All five children spend time living a ‘simple life.’ That’s what I call it. However, my two older boys, who are 8 and 7 years old, claim that’s how poor people live.

So, my father being a hardworking grandpa tells them, “No, this is how a family that works together lives. We raise and grow the food we need to stay healthy. We work hard doing so that we can use our money to buy fun stuff.”

Working hard in the taro patches and feeding the cows -- my boys decide this is kind of a cool thing, but nonetheless a weird lifestyle. I remember getting a call from my son telling me, “Mom, did you know that they pick the oranges from the tree and just eat it? And what’s even worse is they climb the tree and they don’t even wash the fruit.” I was laughing so much. However, I thought to myself, this is such a small thing that I overlooked as a parent, MY SIMPLE LIFE.

It’s amazing how in such a short time away from such a ‘rich’ generation we lose so much of who we are and what we overlook to perpetuate in our children. The bond between a child and a grandparent is priceless. Yes, yes, I know how our mothers can and will step on our toes, but if we allow them an inch, they will teach our children how to accomplish a mile in more ways than imaginable.

The bond between my children and their grandparents are so strong that sometimes it makes me sad to hear them cry because they miss them. However, with the ‘money for fun stuff’ that Papa spoke of, I was able to buy the kiddies a little computer that has skype ready to go whenever they need to say hello.

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Fathers, Dads, Papas: The Unsung Heroes of Breastfeeding

The month of June is to celebrate fathers

Bringing home a new baby can be both a very challenging and happy occasion. Bringing up a child is one of the most important tasks in a person's life. When there is a combined effort to parent between two partners the effort becomes almost effortless. A father's breastfeeding support in the first few days after arriving home can be a positive beginning in a family's journey together.

One of the most popular questions asked by new moms and dads with the IBCLC (Internationally Board Certified Lactation Consultant) is "when can Dad feed the baby, I want him to feel involved." Feeding, while an important activity, is only one of many ways in which a father can be present in his baby's life. Newborns need to be held, comforted, changed, burped, bathed, spoken to, and loved. Holding a newborn skin-to-skin is a gift that any dad can give his child. Studies show that skin-to-skin contact given by anyone caring for a newborn will make the baby feel more secure, provide warmth, even stabilize heart and respiratory rate. Skin-to-skin also, of course, helps breastfeeding go well. Amazing that such a simple act of holding baby close can help a newborn transition to life outside the womb.

Knowledge is power. When Dad is well versed in the demands and physical and emotional impact breastfeeding has on the family, he is better equipped to be supportive. Attending breastfeeding classes and reading books on breastfeeding will help Dad assist with positioning and other aspects of breastfeeding. Asking questions when mom is with the IBCLC, and helping to deflect visitors with unhelpful advice while in the hospital and at home, will also help the mother's efforts. Dad's participation in the first few weeks of breastfeeding in all these ways will help mom and baby get off to a good start with feedings. We should praises all fathers who are supportive of their breastfeeding partners. One of the best things a father can do for his child is to love Mom. (NL)

Happy Fathers Day!!

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Diaper Repairs by Naughty Nappies™

Sway Davis, founder and mommy behind her burgeoning business, Naughty Nappies™will now be offering diaper repair services to Baby aWEARness customers. If you have any cloth diapers in need of new velcro tabs or even snap closures, contact the store and we can help you make arrangements to get them as good as new again.

Super Babies Need Super Foods

Earlier in June, we wrapped up another successful installment of the Super Baby Foods class taught by our very own Ashley Lukens, co-owner of Baby A.

Read here for more compelling information to go organic and/or make your own meals for baby.

If you would like to sign up for the next class scheduled on July 25, please contact the store or e-mail us at

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Let's Talk Toys with Julliet Lowe

The Educational Value Of  Natural Toys

We all strive to live on a healthy plane. We strive for sincerity and love. This in itself is a form of education. Education, for me, means to draw out what we already have within ourselves.

When our children take an interest in something, whether it be from a toy in front of them or a school subject, they will follow that interest with intense concentration. This is when true learning takes place. We as parents have the responsibility to help our children unfold under our protection and guidance. We watch them bloom into wonderful personalities.   Healthy children grow up to benefit themselves, their parents, and essentially, the entire world.

I use this as my goal when purchasing toys for Baby aWEARness. Here's a sneak peek as to what's coming soon..

Push Toys

Pull Toys

Music Toys

Food Play

Happy Playtime to you and yours,
Julliet Lowe

Cloth Diapering 24/7

Baby A's Holli Shiro, cloth-diapering wonder mom, offers some great tips on how to make your cloth diapers work harder at night so you and your baby can get more sleep. 

Problem:  Your baby is completely saturating their diaper at night.
    1.    Change the “stuffing” in your pocket diaper. You can add a second microfiber insert (most pocket diapers come with two), stuff it with a hemp doubler in addition to your microfiber insert or try a cotton prefold inside the pocket instead of microfiber.   If your baby is a tummy sleeper, put the folded part of your insert in the front.
    2.    Try a fitted diaper with wool cover.  If adding doublers or changing the stuffing in your pocket diaper isn’t helping, try a cotton/hemp or bamboo fitted diaper paired with a wool cover.  Wool covers can absorb 30% of their weight in liquid while still remaining breathable and waterproof.  For parents of heavy wetters, this system is the ultimate nighttime solution. 

Problem:  Your baby’s diaper isn’t saturated, but it’s leaking in the front, back or sides.
    1.     Adjust the rise of your pocket diaper or diaper cover.   Try setting your pocket diaper to the next size up to give more coverage and to close the gap between the inside of the diaper and your baby’s clothes.  
    2.    Make sure you have a good snug fit around your baby’s legs.  Sometimes you may not have a great fit if you’ve been stuffing more material in the diaper for absorbency or if your leg elastic is stretched out.  If you can’t get a snug fit with a pocket or AIO diaper, try switching to a prefold with Snappi (so it goes around your baby’s legs) or fitted diaper with a gusseted PUL cover or stretchy wool cover.

Problem:  You’re using a natural fiber diaper at night, but you want the wicking properties of a microfiber pocket diaper.
    1.    Add a fleece liner.  A fleece liner will help whisk moisture from your baby’s skin  while allowing liquids to pass through, helping your baby stay comfortable at night. (HS)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

The Tao of Poo

The Truth About Poo and Cloth Diapers by Ashley Sidell

What is your first thought when someone says “cloth diapers?” Many think that there is no way they want to rinse poo off a cloth diaper. Or what about stains and the smell? There is a lot to know when it comes to poo and cloth diapering. The truth is, it isn’t as bad as you think!

First, let’s discuss the various types of poo there are. And, all poo is related to what they eat.

Meconium is the thick, black, tar-like substance babies pass as their first stool. It will stain anything it touches. Most likely, your baby will pass this substance before their little bottom even touches a diaper, but if not, you can use a biodegradable liner to protect your diapers which you simply flush away when finished. Also, prefolds are an inexpensive option.

Breast Milk
Next, we have breast milk poo. We know this as a very “liquidy” substance that many parents mistakenly think is the hardest to clean. In fact, it is the easiest! Breast milk  poo is water-soluble and will easily rinse off of diapers. Many moms don’t even rinse this type of poo off the diaper before tossing it into the pail. They simply do a pre-rinse cycle on their washing machine prior to running the diapers through a normal washing cycle. 

Formula, Cereal, and Solid Foods
For formula-fed babies, the poo will be a little more green and thicker in texture. Also, when you introduce cereal and other solids to their diet, you will find that baby’s poo will be thicker and clumpier. This type of poo doesn’t have to be so terrible to clean. There are a few ways to tackle this: flushable liners, toilet-paper-scraper method, a thrifty spatula, and for the ultimate cleaning tool: a diaper sprayer! Flushable liners are easy to use and can be quite handy when out and about. Some mommies just take a little toilet paper, shake off what they can and scrape off the rest and toss whatever is left into the diaper pail, letting the washing machine do the rest. I have found that even using a cheap kitchen spatula (specifically designated for this duty) can do a great job at scraping poo without the worries of actually touching it! 

Now comes the fun part! My favorite tool is the diaper sprayer! It is an awesome piece of equipment that even dads can appreciate! It hooks to your toilet tank and has an adjustable pressure valve (so you don’t spray poo bits all over yourself and the walls!) All you have to do is spray the poo off and flush it away. It is also great for cleaning various household items and potty training seats.

There you have it, you now know how to tackle the poos.

There is no more dunking and soaking to remove poo bits from cloth diapers. It’s quite easy and before you know it, you will be cleaning diapers without even thinking about it.

Now, how do we get dad to embrace cloth diapers too? More on that next time! (AS)

Ashley is part of our Baby aWEARness Ohana, who works on community outreach and education about cloth diapering and natural parenting to our local military families. Her passion for natural parenting is an inspiration to all of us. Thanks for enlightening us with your knowledge and experiences!

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Debuting Olelo Noeau by Mele

Mele, our newest Baby A team member, presents a monthly blog column inspired by Hawaiian proverbs. Mele is a brave mother of five who is also working towards a Masters to develop Hawaiian education curriculum. Out of all of us, she knows very well how to juggle the demands and joys of raising her little ones while still holding on to her sanity and sense-of-self.

“I maikai ke kalo i ka oha”
olelo noeau 1232

My blog posts will feature Hawaiian proverbs and how it may have helped me to understand my values in the life i live and how I make choices in raising my children. I don’t always make the right choices, but I live and learn. Although these are Hawaiian proverbs they may just as well pertain to your life experiences whether you are of Hawaiian ancestry or not. So please, if you like it, love it, hate it, or whatever, I just say ENJOY IT and you may find your stories have some similarities. The best thing about it is, it is UNIQUE because it’s YOUR story.

Haalohi in our loi. Keanae, Maui, 2009.

This Hawaiian proverb or olelo noeau means, “the goodness of the taro is judged by the youngest plant it produces.” (Pukui, 1983).

Everyday I am faced with questions ranging from what should I feed my children for snack today to what school is right for them. I am constantly asking myself what was best for me while growing up. As I remember, reflect, and gather everything that worked I remember, OMG, I’m raising my kids after some shifting of paradigms. So now, I’m starting to freak out and think, I don’t think I know what I need to do.

So back to the drawing board I go. Stressing out and realizing if I think about this for an hour then I may get to sleep for five hours and hopefully wake up eager to start the new day. Forget it, right? I’m human and I want six hours of sleep because a well-rested mommy means a happy mommy. Now at 5 a.m. I’m up and start my day. My four older children are greeted by my 2-year-old who, of course, loves his day because he doesn’t have to be anywhere. However, just having that happy attitude helps in starting my kids’ day off on "the right side of the bed."

Going through the motions of getting washed up and dressed they come to the table and wait patiently for breakfast. After that we’re all packed up and ready to face the world. The older boys help get everyone situated in their car seats and at all four different drop-offs, the boys give each other knuckles and kisses for sister. Just as they each leave my car is when I see how the simple things I overlook are the values they have grasped to get through life just fine. No matter what paradigm we live in, values within a family and what makes it work can be applied to any lifestyle and our children will be the ones to portray it in the best way they can.

So, as a parent sometimes I need to step back and remember what I value and what values I make into lifestyles for our children. The best reward is, of course, watching these values amongst siblings. However, the breathtaking moment is when they leave the car and you watch how they treat their peers and other people in their community. Don’t get me wrong, my babies are little adults and WE ALL HAVE OUR MOMENTS. We will never have a perfect day, but we have a lot of good ones. They are always watching and learning. I am who my children will one day want to be like, so if I see they value what I value, I am doing what it takes to raise my children to be successful. My children are the fruits that my ancestors and I have produced. I humbly say, I am proud of who they are. (MD)

Friday, June 4, 2010

Beautiful Nursing Bras

Our favorite maternity boutique, Hot Mama Maternity, is now carrying a selection of the most feminine, gorgeous nursing bras by Amoralia.

Second skin lavender print  *best seller*A brilliant, practical nursing bra in supportive microfibre so comfortable  you won’t even feel you're wearing it. The cross-over design means that  the bra is plunging at the front but still very supportive.

A lovely everyday cotton nursing bra with pretty lace detail on the  neckline and straps.

Embrace with magnetic straps
A great everyday nursing bra in a cool microfibre fabric. This bra features unique patented magnetic clips that make breastfeeding a  doodle (just snap and click). Each clip can support a 2kg weight and feels totally secure.

About Amoralia
Amoralia is the brainchild of Jules Fossett. An ex-advertising strategist, she was struck and bewildered by the obvious gap in the market that lacked beautiful maternity lingerie. Spurred on by the pleas from her pregnant sisters, colleagues, and friends, the idea of stylizing nursing and maternity wear took hold and Amoralia became a reality.

"I'll be honest -- I have never been pregnant. So it may seem surprising that I set up a company dedicated to making the most beautiful maternity underwear on the market. I do know, however -- like you -- that luxury lingerie is one of those things that can instantly make us feel more feminine and sparkling. Why would pregnant women not feel the same?"

Our designer, formerly at some of the UK's hottest designer brands has just had a little girl and has therefore designed a range that is not only glamorous but supportive, practical and seriously comfortable too.

After researching, testing and tweaking, speaking to experienced midwives and dozens of pregnant and breastfeeding women, the Amoralia design team solved recurring issues that came up with nursing moms: invisible nursing clips, pretty straps, breast pad holders, briefs cut to flatter larger bottoms. Elegance, innovation and empathy are at the heart of the brand. Amoralia donates a percentage of their profits to Tommy’s, a charity that aims to end the heartache caused by premature birth, miscarriage and stillbirth."

There is always an opportunity to learn about cloth diapering here at Baby A. If you can't make our monthly installments on the first Saturday of every month at the store, then check your calendars to see if you can attend any of the sessions in our new series on select military bases. (Just click on the flyer for details). Not just for military moms, our friendly staff will be available at these community centers to teach you how to cloth diaper, answer any questions, and inspire you to take the plunge into green parenting.

Of course, you can always drop into the store at Manoa Marketplace and we will be happy to give you a cloth diapering demonstration, one-on-one.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Leafy Green Recipe #002

Savory Spinach Cheese Muffins
by Ashley Lukens

I've told you before why I love me some leafy greens.

Here is a recipe that is all sorts of delicious!

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (a mixture of white, wheat, or soy flour
can be used instead)
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
6 tablespoons butter, melted
1 egg
1 cup whole milk (2% works fine)
1/2 - 1 cup fresh steamed chopped spinach - thawed, drained and squeezed dry
1 cup shredded Cheddar or Swiss cheese
4 garlic cloves, chopped finely
1 small onion, chopped finely

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease 12 cup
muffin cups. Mix the flour, baking powder, baking soda, and salt
together in a mixing bowl. Stir the melted butter, egg, milk, spinach,
and Cheddar cheese together in a large mixing bowl until evenly
blended. Slowly stir in the flour mixture to form a batter. Spoon
about 2 tablespoons into each muffin cup. Bake in preheated oven until
a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean,
about 35 minutes. Serve warm with a buttery spread. To store: place in
a freezer tight ziplock, defrost for 40-45 seconds, and serve with