Tag Archives: baby

The opposite of a helicopter parent

First of all, if you’d like to see some amazing topiary art, hop over to my photography blog. I’m displaying the great topiary I recently spotted at the San Diego Botanic Garden for the WordPress weekly photo challenge’s unique theme. I bet you’ve never seen anything quite like it.

Now, if you think being a helicopter parent is a bad thing, wait till you see what the opposite parent looks like…

My eldest is in first grade and one of his main tasks is to develop and expand his reading skills. I can’t go argue with this exercise. After all, if he can’t read well, it makes it very difficult for him to learn almost anything in school. Fortunately I don’t have to worry about it because he reads well above grade level and loves reading (like mother, like son).

As you can guess, we borrow a lot of books from the library so we never run out of reading materials. His teacher also encourages reading by providing thick storybooks the kids are supposed to read out loud to their parents every night. This activity seems rather voluntary because my son is starting his third textbook while most of the other kids are still on their first one. I personally enjoy these stories because the textbooks are very old and a lot of the pictures are obviously dated. It doesn’t seem to bother my son though.

He got his latest textbook yesterday. It’s called Shining Bridges and it’s a second semester / second-grade level storybook. The book was published in 1965. Yes, almost 50 years ago. Yikes!

Shining Bridges storybook

Shining Bridges storybook

The very first story is about Eddie, a boy who wants a printing press a store is giving away for free (seriously?). When he’s ready to pick it up, another kid beat him to it. He happens to know the girl and offers her to trade the printing press for another toy. Eddie suggests a doll and she accepts his offer. The problem is, he doesn’t have a doll. So he goes to a resale store and finds one that’s pretty beat up but can be fixed. The store doesn’t have a bag for him to put the doll in and he’s embarassed to be seen holding it (sexist boy!). When a group of boys comes close to him, he puts the doll down and pretends to look at a store window. In the meantime, a dog takes the doll away. Eventually Eddie finds the doll again and this is what happens next.

Make sure you read all the words and look at the pictures. Then you tell me what’s wrong with this story.

Eddie, the doll and the baby carriage

The opposite of a helicopter mom

The opposite of a helicopter mom

Did you notice what’s wrong with this story?

Did you notice there was a baby carriage with a baby in it, outside a store, with absolutely nobody else to watch over it? Did you notice the mom was inside the store the whole time this scene happened?

I guess it’s a miracle our parents didn’t all get kidnapped. From helicopter parents to simply absent parents, from one extreme side of parenting to the other, I’m guessing there has to be a happy middle. What do you think?

Meet the world’s funniest dad

I skipped my WWW Wednesdays update yesterday because I’m still reading the same book. Actually, “not reading” would be more accurate. Hopefully, I’ll be done with it by next week and not to a new one.

Boy, do I have something fun to share with you today! I saw this photographer’s slideshow online a couple of months ago and I meant to share it with you then. I got sidetracked as it often happens and forgot all about it until I told a friend about it earlier this week. If you haven’t seen it and could use a good laugh, be ready to laugh so hard tears will flood out of your eyes. And if you don’t laugh, you need to get yourself a real sense of humor.  ;-)

I love how Dave Engledow, who happens to be both a photographer and a dad, somehow decided to poke fun at distracting dads by creating these hilarious scenes with his daughter. You can view Engledow’s full slideshow “World’s Best Father” photos and read more about how his project started here. I’ve selected the few that made me laugh the most, but there are many more where it came from. Let me know what you think, whether you’re a mom, or a dad! I think we’ve all felt like that at some point…

Wouldn’t you like to have a little helper around the house? It’s never too early to learn how to iron!

Teach your toddler to iron! Copyright Dave Engledow

Teach your toddler to iron! Copyright Dave Engledow

Ever wondered if it was a good time to take that shower?

What happens when you try to take a shower - Copyright Dave Engledow

What happens when you try to take a shower – Copyright Dave Engledow

I saved you the best for last…

Reading Twilight at bedtime - Copyright Dave Engledow

Reading Twilight at bedtime – Copyright Dave Engledow

Don’t forget to goview Engledow’s “World’s Best Father” photos here.

WordPress weekly photo challenge: Blue

Living in San Diego, CA, I get to enjoy beautiful blue skies the majority of the year. I’m not sure what makes the sky so blue here, but I’m guessing it has to do with our latitude and the ways the sun rays light up the sky. It really does help when taking photos of various subjects, and using the blue sky as a nice, contrasted background.

I took this photo in our backyard a few weeks ago, after what will probably be our last rain for the next six months.

Wordpress weekly photo challenge: Blue

WordPress weekly photo challenge: Blue

I also can’t help thinking about my boys when I hear the word blue. My whole world is blue because of them. They avoid the aisles of girl toys, calling them “the pink aisles”. They both have beautiful blue eyes and look great with blue tops, so I buy a lot of those. We also have a blue couch at our house, courtesy of IKEA. With a removable cover you can throw in the washer, this is one of the best furniture investments I’ve made with two kids. Here’s my four-year old when he was just a baby, sitting on the blue couch in his blue footsy pajamas, with his beautiful blue eyes (which you really can’t see well on this picture). 

My baby boy sitting on the blue couch

And here’s a photo of his brother when he wasn’t even two years old, sitting on our blue couch in my blue T-shirt, using my Boppy pillow and a burpcloth to breastfeed his lovey. How cute is that? I also have a photo of him using my breastpump but you’ll have to wait for the color “yellow” to be the theme of the photo challenge!

My son breastfeeding his lovey with the Boppy pillow

phil&teds USA recalls metoo clip-on chairs, finally

Stop using dangerous phil&teds metoo clip-on chairs

Stop using dangerous phil&teds metoo clip-on chairs

Well, it took three months for phil&teds USA to get on board with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission and admit their product is unsafe, but they finally did it!

On May 15, 2011, the US CPSC urged phil&teds USA to recall their metoo clip-on chairs because of fall and amputation hazards, but the company refused to do so, only addressing the issue by making a “repair” kit available the US CPSC deemed unacceptable.  Yesterday phil&teds USA admitted the product is unsafe and consumers should be allowed to return it for a refund.

It had to take all 19 reports of the chairs falling from tables, including five reports with injuries, for the company to react. Two reports of injuries involved children’s fingers being severely pinched, lacerated, crushed or amputated. The three other reports involved bruising after a chair detached suddenly and a child struck the table or floor.

This really makes you wonder whose best interest phil&teds USA has in mind – their consumers or their corporate greed… A flagrant example of a company who makes baby and children’s products but doesn’t believe in safety first, even when they screw up. Knowing how they address safety issues, I wouldn’t recommend this brand of products to any parent, especially when you realize how expensive most of their products are. Shame on you, phil&teds USA.

Visit the US CPSC website for the complete announcement of the phil&teds USA recall and pass it along to your friends, for their children’s safety.