BabyFest 2017

Our 2017 expo is over and our hearts are full!

The venue this year was on Babies in Bloom’s very own doorstep, with over 50 tents and booths lining our sun drenched street. We can’t tell you what it meant to us to peek out of the window at 9.30 AM and already see a long line of glowing mamas-to-be, their partners and other excited family members waiting to get in.

To all our visitors: thank you for letting us be part of your growing family’s exciting journey.

And to our wonderful exhibitors: thank you for all the support, wisdom, reassurance and encouragement you shared with our guests.

Together, we formed quite a village at BabyFest 2017. A place where no question was too foolish, no fear went unheard and where judgement simply wasn’t tolerated. Because we know that no two families are the same – each will tell their own beautiful story in their own special way.

For those that couldn’t make BabyFest this year, you can still visit some of our booths virtually!  Check out our BabyFest 2017 Facebook event page. A roaming camera at the event filmed live action at booths to give those at home a sneak peak of some of the wonderful products and services showcasing at the event.

We also dare you not to smile when you see the Groovaroo impromptu flashmob dance that took place on the street. It’s AWESOME! Check out the baby snuggling dance moves here  – plus take a look at the new Baby TULA ‘Free to Grow’ carriers being used (usable from 0+ – 4 years!). Groovaroo classes are hosted regularly at the boutique – check out our events calendar for more info.

For many, the expert talks are always an expo highlight. This year, we had certified babywearing educators showcasing the different types of baby carriers out there in the market, as well as Jennifer Aprea from Spray Pal answering all sorts of questions about cloth diapering. Our car seat safety expert Katie, was also on hand to explain the latest laws to parents and help them choose the right seat for their family.

‘Meet the Midwives’ is also an annual favorite. These local midwives couldn’t love their job any more and have delivered thousands of beautiful babies between them. They know more than anyone that how you birth matters and are committed to delivering a personalized experience to each and every family to help them have the birth they have always dreamed of.

If you missed the talks, don’t worry! The boutique regularly hosts classes and workshops on these topics and much, much more – from lactation and hypnobirthing to first aid and sleep coaching. You can also book car one-on-one seat safety checks with Katie via the boutique – free if you purchase a seat from Babies in Bloom. Again, just visit our events calendar page for more details.

So, while we’re sorry you couldn’t all make it down to BabyFest 2017, it’s never too late to join the Babies in Bloom family. Our doors are always open – hope to see you soon!

 

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Packing Your Birth Center Bag

packing birth center bagSo, there’s only a handful of weeks left before you welcome your little one in to the world. Excitement doesn’t even begin to cover it!  You might also be wondering… “What do I pack in our birth bag?”… especially if it will be your first experience in a birth center.

It’s common to stay at a birth center around four to six hours after the birth, meaning you won’t need to pack as much as you might for a longer hospital stay. There are also more home comforts at a birth center – from full kitchen facilities to bath tubs to soak in – which again can influence what you might want to bring with you.

To help you get started, we’ve pulled together a recommended checklist for you. Use it as a rough guide and simply add to the core list to personalize it for you and your partner. Remember, if you have any questions or worries, don’t hesitate to call your birth center – they are there to help you get the birth you’ve always dreamed of!

Things to pack for you:

  • Your birth plan
  • Insurance card and phone number
  • Comfortable clothes (and shoes / slippers) to wear during labor, (and perhaps a sports bra / bikini top if a water birth is your preference)
    • Top tip: if you are planning a photographer to capture this special arrival, think solid block colors and minimal logos for both you and your partner
  • Headband and hair ties to keep hair out of your face during delivery
  • Favorite drinks – think juice, coconut water or electrolyte drinks – and nourishing snacks for both labor and postpartum.
    • A lot of birth centers like ours, have cooking facilities for you to use, so you can even some of your home cooked favorites with you for a well-earned post labor treat!
  • Essential oils and massage oils
  • Back labor massage tools
  • Rice sock / heating pad
  • Books, magazine, games for relaxation
  • Hand-held fan
  • Your preferred toiletries  – we’d recommend some soothing lip balm too.
  • Glasses / contact lenses and solution
  • Phone / camera / video camera, plus chargers
  • Call list (if you’re old school and like to have a hard copy)
  • Music player – for your relaxing labor playlist
  • A fresh nightgown, nursing bras and spare old dark underwear for post delivery
  • Maternity pads
  • Comfortable going home clothes
  • Loose change for unknown expenses, like parking fees. Just in case.

 

Things to pack for Baby: 

  • A few different outfits and hats – including accessories for newborn photos, plus the outfit you want baby to go home in
  • Blankets, including a swaddle blanket
  • Cloth diapers (if choosing to go cloth) or disposable diapers
  • Wipes
  • Burp cloths
  • A gift from baby for big brother or sister for that precious first meeting
  • Infant car seat
    • We’d advise playing around with the seat prior to baby’s arrival, just to ensure you feel confident installing the seat in the car, as well as securing baby safely in the seat. If in doubt, go to a car seat inspection spot for installation support.

Just to be super prepared, you might also want to pack a hospital bag in case of transport, consisting of additional spare clothes, pads, toiletries, diapers, wipes etc.
We hope this helped. Good luck mamas to be, you will be great. You’ve totally got this!

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To Reveal or Not to Reveal?

gender revealThat is the question.

There doesn’t seem a day that goes by without seeing some ridiculously cute gender reveal photo or video on social media. And the reveal tactics are getting more elaborate aren’t they? We’ve gone from simple colored cake filling and confetti filled piñatas, to home run color explosions and squirt guns filled with either pink or blue paint.

Creative stunts aside, what do you think about gender reveals in general? Did you find out? Did you tell? Or did you keep everyone in suspense?

Some people are planners. And that’s totally fine. Especially if it is Number 2 or 3. It’s always nice to know if you need to go out and invest in some first time girl or boy clothes. And what about the name…if you already know the sex, you’ll be cutting your workload in half when it comes to brainstorming names right?

Some people just can’t contain their excitement. And we don’t blame them. It’s a MAJOR discovery in a major chapter of their life – it would be hard not to want to scream it from the rooftops.

Some people can’t stand all the speculation and old wives tale predictions. If you are carrying high, it’s a girl. Low, it’s a boy. Craving salt? It’s a boy. No pregnancy glow? It’s a girl. And so on. A gender reveal is the easiest way to stop all those guessing games.

But then there is weeks of gender stereotyping to think about. If you reveal the sex pre arrival, you run the risk of people telling you what little boys do and what little girls are like – for weeks on end. Some people don’t want to find out the sex to simply avoid this kind of generalized small talk. There’s plenty of time for that postpartum.

Not finding out also means you won’t get a ton of people buying you the standard pink frills or t shirts with footballs on. Some parents hate the idea of being pigeonholed. Friends and family have to go neutral and play it safe if they don’t know the sex. Think yellow, greens, greys and beige. At least until your little one makes an appearance.

And for some people, it just comes down to sheer surprise factor. Some people like the surprise. They simply don’t want to know. It just doesn’t matter.  They know it will be worth the wait. And that’s just fine by us too.

In the age of social oversharing (thanks Facebook!), it’s easy to feel pressured to spill the beans. While each couple will have a different opinion about gender reveals, only they will know what will make them happy. And that’s what really matters -not the way in which you find out, or share the news, but the way you WANT your story to go. Stay strong and do it your way!

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No Such Thing as a Stupid Question

shutterstock_153205205It was ‘Ask a Stupid Question day’ this week. There really is a day for everything now isn’t there?

It did get us all thinking though. In particular about pregnancy and those early days of motherhood when you had SO many questions that you were just too afraid to ask other moms, family, friends, even doctors.

Like, what if I go to the bathroom when giving birth?

Will my vagina return to normal?

Why is my baby’s poop that color?

Am I holding my baby too much?

How long is it OK for a baby to cry?

Do I sterilize the pacifier after every use?

Can I have a glass of wine if I am breastfeeding?

The list is endless. The truth is, even if you have read all the books, you are never fully prepared for the real thing. Motherhood is a never ending learning path. With every new joyous milestone or phase comes new questions and concerns.

But for some reason, many moms will be too embarrassed to ask certain questions out loud. They will spend time furiously searching pages and pages of google searches instead, seeking both answers and reassurance there. Why? Maybe they feel that they should already know this. That it is too trivial or too obvious to ask out loud. Maybe they feel silly or embarrassed. Maybe they feel that it should all be instinctual now they are moms – they should know their child best after all. And if they don’t have that instinct, have they failed somehow? They can’t let anyone know….

It’s only later on, often when moms have found their confident stride, that they realise that a lot of other moms all had the exact same questions or worries at the same time. They all just kept quiet for fear of looking silly.

The truth is there is no such thing as a stupid question in motherhood, except the one that you choose not to ask. So ask it loud and ask it proud. Always. Keep learning, keep growing and most importantly, keep sending the elevator back down for new moms and moms-to-be. Share your experiences with them – and dads too – and tell them what your own silly questions and thoughts were once upon a time. It’s so important that we club together and encourage parents to open up to us, without any fear of judgement. Because the truth is, half the time, we all feel like we are winging this don’t we? There is always more to learn and certainly many, many more questions to come.

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