Wood Keys by Etsy Shop Mama Made Them

My 8-month-old with wooden keys by Mama Made Them.

When my first child was a baby, I used to sometimes give him my car keys to play with while buckling him in the car seat. But one day after buckling him in, I walked over to my car door and just before opening it heard the familiar "beep" of the car alarm. I had accidentally left the car keys in the hands of my baby and my baby had locked me out of the car. Before total panic could set it, my baby pushed another button and unlocked the doors. Needless to say, after that experience, I never again let him play with my car keys.

Even if you are no where near your car, you should avoid letting small children play with your keys because household keys often contain lead and little kids love to put keys in their mouths.

But recently I was thinking about how my current baby is always trying to grab my keys out of my hand. And why not? Keys are fun. That's why there are about 100 varieties of plastic toy keys for sale. I once owned a set of colorful #5 plastic toy keys, but I have long since purged all plastic infant toys from my house. And so I thought, I should get her some wood keys.

Eco-crafting is Easy with Green Kid Crafts

First you should know that I am not in the best position to review craft projects because I don't really do crafts with my kids. But for the benefit of my crafty readers, and because some part of me aspires to being the kind of mom that does more crafts with my kids, I agreed to review some craft projects by Green Kid Crafts, an earth-friendly craft project subscription service.

Labor and Delivery Hospital Bag Packing List

So you're having a baby. What should you pack in that bag you are taking with you to the hospital? I've had a lot of time to think about what to pack in my hospital bag for labor and delivery. All three of my children have been overdue. My first two babies came two weeks over due and were induced, so those deliveries were basically scheduled and I had much more time than I ever wanted to think about what to put in the bag. Here are some things to consider taking if you will soon be finding yourself in a labor and delivery room.

Eco-novice's Favorite Breastfeeding Gear

It's World Breastfeeding Week!

For me, one of the wonderful benefits of breastfeeding is the fact that you don't need any gear. You will forget the diaper bag or change of clothes or favorite toy many, many times in your parenting career, but if you breastfeed, you'll never forget the milk. Nonetheless, there are some things that have made breastfeeding easier and more comfortable for me. They aren't necessary, but they can be useful.

Nursing pillows. I am able to read and even write or use my computer a little while nursing if I have a nursing pillow. For my third baby, I ditched the polyurethane foam one in favor of two natural nursing pillows. One is filled with buckwheat hulls, the other with organic cotton. I love them both. The buckwheat one has also worked really well for my baby as support/ padding for sitting.

Our Favorite Natural Baby Teethers

I used to have lots of plastic baby toys.  First I got rid of all the soft plastic toys (in case they were made of vinyl and contained phthalates), then I got rid of all the plastic toys except those that I knew were made of "safe" plastics. But in the end, I decided to banish all the plastic baby toys. I found that when I had plastic as well as natural toys, I often had to watch my baby favor the plastic ones.  But for my babies who never got to suck on plastic, I've found they like the natural toys plenty.

Since babies spend so much time with their hands and their toys in their mouths, and since babies are especially vulnerable to synthetic chemicals, why mess around with plastics? These days there are tons of awesome teethers, rattles, stuffed animals, blocks and other toys for babies made of cotton, wool, bamboo, wood and other natural materials. Here are some of my third baby's favorite teethers:



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