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Maddie n Gamma read

Maddie n Gamma read



Holiday Gift-Giving: Toys For All Tots
Wednesday, 29 November 2006

This week I’m doing a series on holiday gift ideas. I usually break my informative article series up with alternating pieces about life with Maddie, but let’s face it: the shopping clock’s ticking. So we’re moving forward, and today’s attention is on toy shopping.

There’s a great website you can always refer to in a pinch: Oppenheimer Toy Portfolio. They rate toys by age range and I’ve always found them to be right-on. It’s a great place to turn if you’re overwhelmed. You’ll also find a few great websites or catalogs and learn to trust the quality of those stores. One Step Ahead Constructive Playthings Sensational Beginnings and Fat Brain Toys have served me well.

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It's That Time of Year
Tuesday, 28 November 2006

Today I’m kicking off a series of articles designed to make your holiday shopping a little easier.

Don’t worry; I’m not going to spend the next few days telling you the “hot new toys” that your baby “must have” or anything like that. But I am going to try to steer you through the rocky waters of baby’s Christmas. I realized last year that I had no idea what to tell the grandparents Maddie wanted for Christmas; she certainly wasn’t leaving any catalogs with circled items lying around. And I had no idea what Maddie would like to play with until she gave it a go!

So I did my typical obsessive mommy thing – I asked my focus group for advice. They were so helpful that I returned to them for her first birthday, getting great suggestions for toys she’d quickly grow into that are worth the investment. Hence, these next articles – passing on the wisdom I’ve gathered together.

Keep in mind that these recommendations are purely anecdotal, depending on what our kids have liked. There’s no scientific research behind any of these suggestions beyond polling my friends.

And the best part of this week is that I’m going beyond toys. I’ll cover toys by age group, other gifts for kids, and lest we forget, gifts for mommies.

Which is where we start today – gifts for expectant and new mommies. Scroll down, and enjoy. And remember two things: first, you’re always welcome to turn to my Top 5s page for suggestions on gear, clothing, and more; and second, you can always email an article to someone! Say, a spouse!

Holiday Gift-Giving: Dressing Mommy
Tuesday, 28 November 2006

Some of you may be puzzled that I’m starting off the article series on holiday shopping with suggestions for you, but let’s face it: once baby shows up, you move from being the center of attention to the Glorified Diaper Bag Carrier. So let’s give ourselves some front-and-center time!

Obviously, I can’t make personalized suggestions for you all as to what you’d most like to see under your tree. I’d say that you should make it clear to your loved ones if you don’t want anything mommy- or baby-related, or you may end up with a stocking full of Buy Buy Baby gift cards. But speaking as a pregnant mommy with a toddler at home, I enjoy a bit of mommy-related gifts. And of course, I love clothes. So I’m listing my favorite sites to find pregnancy and post-partum clothing that goes beyond practicals, beyond Gap Maternity, beyond those comfortable, “useful” black pants that grow with you and go with anything. Want maternity clothing recommendations in general? Check my Top 5s Page.

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Monday, 27 November 2006

We’re back from our Thanksgiving trip to visit family, and the one thing I can say with certainty is that nothing went as we originally planned.

One day before we headed out, my grandmother died. Though this was not entirely unexpected, I was devastated: my grandmother meant a lot to me and I will miss her very much.

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Wednesday, 22 November 2006

(Note: I originally wrote this entry a month ago; I’m catching you up on my first trimester!)

I’m starting week ten in this pregnancy, and that’s the only word for it – harder.

I know I mentioned in an earlier blog that I didn’t have morning sickness with my first pregnancy. I’ve not hit the actual puking point in this one, but I’m definitely dealing with on-the-edge nausea and managing that seems to take up an inordinate amount of time.

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