Respectful Parents, Respectful Kids

In line with our April Parenting Resolution, I was thinking about what is the best book about ‘RESPECT.’ This book is a gem in that regard!

It covers everything we’ve been talking about this month about how respectful parents raise respectful children, and more. In this book, the authors invite parents to move beyond common discipline gimmicks, into practical advice on how foster mutual respect and connection.

This book focuses on understanding what makes us tick, why we feel the way we do, why we do the things we do. As I have mentioned many times, everything begins with us, the parents.  This book does a great job helping us understand our own thoughts, feelings, triggers and behaviors, as well as those of our children.

As you go through it, you will realize that the philosophy taught in this book, applies to every relationship, not just the one with your children. I’d invite you to get a copy and enjoy the read.

If you don’t have time to read, listen to it! Audible is my best discovery! Check it out!

Let me know what you think! What are the key lessons you got out of it?

Much love, Diana-

Strollers

1. Umbrella & Compact Strollers

GB Pockit Plus

This stroller is unbelievable! With its innovative two step folding technique, the Pockit+ folds into a compact, handbag-shaped package in seconds. This stroller is cleverly designed to stand alone when folded, and has an automatic fold lock for security when folded and for easy transport or storage.

Pockit_Lifestyle04_Header

The Pockit+ has one-hand push for convenient pushing and steering, adjustable harness system can be easily set at different heights and fastened or loosened for a cozy and secure fit, and a comfortable and multi-adjustable seat-back meets the need of every child, whether sitting up or reclining for a relaxing sleep.

This amazing stroller can be used from birth (when used with car seat) up to 55 lbs, and with its innovative design allows it to fit in an overhead compartment of an airplane, so it’s the ideal companion when traveling with a child.

Summer Infant 3D Lite

stroller1

We got so much use out of this umbrella stroller during our last trip to Europe. It’s sturdy and super light weight, and carried our 2 year old daughter without issues down the streets of Madrid, Salamanca, Caceres and many other magical places, with ease.

3Dlite features an innovative air-light aluminum frame which makes it super lightweight to carry and push – yet durable enough to stand the test of time! With its open design, you can easily access the large storage basket or recline almost flat which is ideal for on-the-go naps or diaper changes!

BabyZen YoYo +

babygosling-ppink-white-babyzen-yoyo-plus-travel-system_2048x2048-1024x557.jpg

Going far afield with a child in tow? With the new 2016 BabyZen YoYo+ 6+ Stroller, it’s easier than ever: this year’s version of the stroller that folds up small enough to fit into an airplane overhead compartment has some great new features. The BabyZen YoYo+ weighs only 13 pounds. In addition to that teeny-tiny fold, it has a reclining seat, an extendable leg rest, and the “soft drive” system, which enables you to navigate over rougher terrain without having to lock the wheels in place.

2. Luxury Strollers

Quinny Rachel Zoe Jet Set Moodd Stroller

IMG_0605-1024x591.jpg

This Rachel Zoe x Quinny Special Edition merges your favorite Quinny stroller with Rachel Zoe’s unparalleled, award-winning fashion sensibility. This fashionable stroller is truly one of a kind, inspired by the jetsetter lifestyle and paying homage to the luxurious detail found in the design of vintage leather luggage. Premium cognac leather and oversized gold detailing complement classic black and white fabric for a look that is tailored to perfection, allowing parents to walk their way in style. Not only the stroller is amazing, but the many accessories that can be added to it, are to die for if your pockets are deep enough.

Stokke Xplory Newborn Stroller

E5F0B6C4.pt03.zoom_.jpg

This stroller is gorgeous and it allows your child to be up close to you and far away from the dust of the ground. The height of the seat is adjustable to raise your baby higher for interaction.

This stroller is truly one of the best strollers on the market. The versatility it has is amazing. It can be set in so many positions.

 

Bugaboo Donkey Weekender

161109-bgb-d-weekender-2560x1440.jpg

OMG! This is stroller is so beautiful! The bugaboo donkey weekender is in a totally fabulous blue-grey marle colour with super classy hints of cognac leather on the handlebar and bumper bar. It comes with a lovely and chic Bugaboo Weekender bag.As expected from bugaboo, the weekender bag isn’t just your average overnight bag. It screams class with its quality fabrics, diamond embroidered lining, hidden pockets, removeable wallet, tan leather handles and the all important embroidered bugaboo branding.

This stroller converts for one baby or two, as you can see in the section below about double strollers.

 

3. Double Strollers

Baby Jogger 2016 City Select Double Stroller with 2nd Seat

6JF00-baby-jogger-city-select-stroller-ics-mom-dad-2-toddlers-forward-rear-facing-in-use-1.jpeg

This is one of my absolute favorite double strollers! We used it from with our twins until they were 4 years old, navigating the streets of New York City, and with our singleton until she was out of the stroller. It’s a fantastic, versatile, and easy to maneuver stroller!

Bugaboo Donkey

Bugaboo_Weekender_Double.jpg

This is stroller is versatile with 19 different configurations. The Bugaboo Donkey expands into a side-by-side double stroller and back to a single one with a very spacious and chic side luggage, in just a few simple clicks. The expandable side luggage basket keeps essentials at hand with room to pick up more along the way.

The Bugaboo Donkey is the only pram on the market that expands width-wise to convert from single mode to double mode.  It can also accommodate two baby capsules, two bassinets or any combination of baby capsules, bassinets or seats you need.

The Bugaboo Donkey is easy to push and maneuver with one hand thanks to the front swivel wheels and tight turn radius. No terrain is too rough for these big foam-filled tires, even when the stroller’s fully loaded or converted to a double stroller.

To convert the Bugaboo Donkey Stroller into double you just have to purchase the Duo Extension Set.

4. Running Strollers

Single: BOB 2016 Revolution PRO Jogging Stroller

4893dda9fc1c159f8dd7221946da8375-jogging-stroller-car-seats.jpg

BOB’s best all-terrain stroller has all the features you need and is suitable for children from 8 weeks old and up to 75 pounds. I love this running stroller. This is BOB’s most deluxe all-terrain stroller. It has hand-activated rear drum brakes for the best downhill control. The front wheel can swivel for top maneuverability or lock for added stability. The state-of-the-art suspension system takes bumps in stride and the adjustable handlebar provides a perfect fit for parents. Pair it with the BOB B-Safe 35 Infant Car Seat by Britax to create the best travel system for your lifestyle.

Double: BOB 2016 Revolution PRO Duallie Jogging Stroller

BOB-Revolution-Pro-Duallie-Stroller-2

The Revolution Pro Duallie is BOB’s most deluxe on- and off-road stroller for larger families. Fully loaded for all your adventures, this stroller is perfect for intense workouts or casual strolls, when you want both kids along for the ride.

The Revolution Pro Duallie is the most deluxe, 2-kid all-terrain stroller from BOB, the #1 jogging stroller. Hand-activated rear drum brakes make for the best downhill control. The front wheel can swivel for top maneuverability or lock for added stability. The state-of-the-art adjustable suspension system takes bumps in stride and the adjustable handlebar provides a perfect fit for any parent. Pair it with the BOB B-Safe 35 Infant Car Seat by Britax to create the ideal travel system.

Baby Gear

iBaby Care M7 Baby Monitor

This monitor is outstanding. It is Wi-Fi enabled so you can always look at your baby on your own phone (iPhone and Android). It has full HD imaging, and 360 rotation capabilities. It projects a very nice moonlight soother on the ceiling to help your little one fall asleep. The price tag is elevated, but it is definitely worth!

Owlet Smart Sock 2 Baby Monitor – Track Your Infant’s Heart Rate & Oxygen Levels

This monitor was a Godsend to my husband and I when we brought our preemie twins home. We weren’t to concerned about having a camera to look them constantly, but we wanted to be able to listen to them at all times.

Most importantly we wanted something that would alert us should they stopped breathing. We were used to having hooked to several monitors that would alert us and the medical stuff should something went wrong. Having this monitor definitely helped us sleep better at night.

 

Halo Sleep Sacks

Bedding such as pillows, thick quilts, comforters, pillows, sheets, stuffed animals, and blankets pose a suffocation hazards. To keep your baby warm, try a sleep sack or other sleep clothing that doesn’t require additional covers. When choosing a sleep bag, make sure the width of the neck isn’t wide enough for your child to slip himself completely in. Halo has wonderful sleep sacks, in fleece for the winter, and cotton for the summer.

Breastfeeding Gear

Breast Pumps:

Medela Pump In Style

This is the pump that I used with all three of my babies. The twins were so preemie that I had to pump since they were born, because they didn’t have the strength to suck. Despite my best efforts, breastfeeding never got the traction I wanted it to, so I ended up pumping instead of nursing.

I pumped for a year, and I must say that this pump was amazing! The suction strength is closer to the hospital grade pumps. It’s easy to carry around (7lbs), relatively easy to clean, and you can use it hands free with a good hands free breastfeeding bra (see below).

Medela Freestyle Pump


This pump is very similar to the Pump In Style. It’s a little bit quieter, so it’s great for moms pumping at work. It’s a little bit lighter than the Pump In Style. It has a cool LCD display with a memory function, timer and backlight.

It seems to do less thorough job of expressing milk than the Pump In Style, so I would suggest women who are worried their milk supply to go with the Pump In Style, since the suction seems to be better which leads to more milk supply. Other than the mildly less powerful suction, this pump is an exceptional option.

Simple Wishes Signature Hands Free Pumping Bra:


This hands free pump bra is a lifesaver, especially for those moms who are returning to work, o who, like me can’t nurse their babies directly for whatever reason and are exclusively pumping. When you pump exclusively, you pump for an average of 20 minutes every 3-3.5 hours. That’s a lot of time pumping every day. This bra allows you to pump hands free, so you can cook, work on your computer, read a book… while you’re pumping. A must have for every pumping mom.

Breastfeeding Pillows:

Singletons: My Brest Friend Original Nursing Pillow

This is a fantastic nursing pillow. I breastfeed my third daughter for 15 months and after trying multiple nursing pillows the first few weeks, I settled on the My Brest Friend Pillow. It is very comfortable, easy to use and it is the only nursing pillow designed to perfectly position baby for latch-on while supporting mom’s body. My daughter had a tongue and lip tie, which made nursing quite difficult and painful at the beginning, and this pillow helped me positioned her in way that improved her latch, which made all the difference for us.

Tandem Nursing/Twins: My Brest Friend Twins Plus Deluxe Nursing Pillow

This is a fantastic tandem nursing pillow. I haven’t personally used it a lot, because my twins were so premature that they didn’t have the strength to nurse on their own, so I ended up pumping for them instead of breastfeeding them directly. However, based on my short experience with it, and my experience with the singleton one, I totally recommend it.

Pregnancy & First Years Books

What to Expect When You’re Expecting by Heidi Murkoff


This is one of those staple books for pregnant women, especially for first time mothers. Pregnancy is complicated, and sometimes scary, especially the first time around. This book explains in plain terms what’s expected at every moment during pregnancy.

The Belly Book: A Nine-Month Journal for You and Your Growing Belly by Amy Krouse Rosenthal


This is a wonderful keepsake of your pregnancy. Although the name of the book is not my cup of tea, and the aesthetics are not very appealing to me, the interior design overcompensates these two flaws.

This book has room to store all your ultrasound pictures and belly bump pictures. I has great prompts for the expecting mothers to write down their feelings, their worries, their funny pregnancy experiences and much more. This is a great keepsake for you or to pass on to your child once he’s grown.

My Baby Book: A Keepsake Journal for Baby’s First Year by Amy Krouse Rosenthal


Just like her Belly Book, this book is a great keepsake. Although the name of the book is not my cup of tea, and the aesthetics are not very appealing to me, the interior design overcompensates these two flaws. It is an easy to fill out book to capture all the milestones of the first year of your baby.

Parenting Books

Audible

Audible has been the biggest discovery for me last year. I used to have a huge pile of books to read that I wasn’t able to get to before a new one added the pile. I love reading, especially parenting books, and I was getting frustrated because I couldn’t find time to read. Enter… Audible!

With Audible I can listen to my books wherever I am with their free app— in the car while I wait the pick up line, on my treadmill while I exercise, in my town while I walk my dog, in bed before I go to sleep, in the bathroom while I take a relaxing bath… just about anywhere! I love Audible and I recommend it every chance again, because it’s been life changing for me. If you love reading and don’t have time to sit with a book, you should definitely check it out.

The Conscious Parent: Transforming Ourselves, Empowering Our Children by Dr. Shefali Tsabary

My friend, Dr. Shefali Tsabary, who became Oprah’s favorite parenting expert, has written the most enlightening and revolutionary parenting book. This book completely resonates my idea that ‘parenting starts with us.

This book uncovers the many ways in which we unconsciously react to our children, and how we can stop our daily struggles as we uncover better ways to let our children thrive in their own way. In my opinion, this book should be in every parent, grandparent, educator and teacher’s library.

The Awakened Family: A Revolution in Parenting by Dr. Shefali Tsabary

Another wonderful book by Dr. Tsabary. This book sits on the premise that in order to be the best parents for our children, we need to first parent ourselves. We need to address and deal with our own issues, struggles, and automatic reactions as the key to coping with the challenges that come with raising little souls.

The Five Love Languages of Children by Gary Chapman, D. Ross Campbell

This book is about how to love your children. It sounds simple enough, doesn’t it? Well, as it turns out, it is not as straight forward as we may think. How many adults are still dealing with feeling unloved as children? In most cases, their parents did love them. However, those parents didn’t know how to SHOW each child that they love them in a way the children understood.

Some of us feel loved by getting individual attention, others by words of affirmation… Everyone of us speak our particular love language. In order to make sure our children feel our unconditional love, we need to figure out their love languages. In this book, Dr. Chapman clearly explains the 5 different love languages children have.

Positive Discipline by Jane Nelsen


This is a very practical book that teaches parents how to discipline their children without the use of time outs, punishment, shame or guilt trips. As I mentioned before positive parenting is not permissive parenting.

This book gives parents the tools to raise their children without any punitive measurements, as they help build their decision-making abilities, their communication skills, their respect, their awareness, their confidence, their self-esteem, and their maturity.

My Favorite Things

Following Oprah’s steps, I have decided to create a list of my favorite things. These are things that I have personally used or have direct experience with. These are the main categories I will be covering in the near future:

Stay tuned for the reviews as they come up. If there’s any book, product or service you’d like me to review, let me know and I’ll do my best to get to it!

Much love, Diana-

Two Thousand Kisses A Day

Those of us who’ve decided to follow a gentle parenting approach with our children know that this path doesn’t come without bumps on the road. Many think that gentle parenting is a permissive, lazy, dessorganized or hippy. Others think it’s a radical form of parenting that pushes breastfeeding, co-sleeping, babywearing, and elimination-communication on everyone, regardless of the circumstances.

We know that gentle parenting is neither one nor the other. As L. R. Knost puts it in her new book ‘Two Thousand Kisses a Day’, gentle pareting is all about meeting our children’s need for secure connection.
But how do we do that? We are surrounded by articles, books and pareting journals advising us not do use punitive discipline, not to spank our children, not to use rewards and bribes, not to label and humiliate our children, not to yell at them… and to be present, to create moments of connection with our children, to meet our children’s needs, to be firm but loving, to set limits… 
 
ImageHowever, all this general information sometimes confusses many gentle, positive parents. Many of the parents I work with privately or that I meet at my parenting seminars tell me that they understand the general principles of gentle parenting and positive discipline (loving guidance), but need clear examples on how to apply that to their day to day lives with their children.
 
Well, Linda’s book might just be the solution for these parents. Linda R.Knost is a children’s book and parenting author and founder and director of Little Hearts/Gentle Parenting Resources, an online resource for gentle parenting education, articles, and research. 
 
Linda gives clear examples, fantastic suggestions and clear information for gentle parents wanting to develope secure, healthy, lifelong connections with their children. In the book she doesn’t only give guidance on how to parent during the formative years of a child, but also during their teenage years and young adulthood. Linda is a mom of six children herself, which gives her a valuable perspective of 25 years raising children.
 
‘Two thousand kisses a day’ become ‘two thousand points of connection a day’ as our children grow up. As Linda describes it ‘Creating two thousand connection points a day isn’t about quality time, and it isn’t even about the quantity of time spent with our children. It is, instead, about being there in the small moments, the moments that matter to our children, and consciously meeting with them right where they are.
I absolutely love the simplicity and clarity of this statement, because I believe that’s what parenting is all about, it’s about relationship and connection, it’s about meeting our children’s needs, it’s about being consciously present, it’s about making sure our children know they’re unconditionally loved, it’s about being in our children’s lives now.
Much love, Diana Blanco