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Archive for January, 2008

Wii ELBOW? That’s nothin’.

Ever since Nintendo introduced the Wii last year, we’ve heard occasional reports of video game injuries. We, ahem, got a little case of Wii-elbow ourselves, after bowling a tad too enthusiastically with the fam. So we figured we knew all about the potential risks. Ah, how wrong we were. Now there’s an entire YouTube subgenre devoted to Wii injuries (a few of dubious credibility) - and some on MySpaceTV too. If you were planning to buy a big ol’ plasma TV for your Wii, you may want to think again…
Wii Sports Accident

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Posted on Tuesday, January 22nd, 2008
Under: Family Entertainment | No Comments »

BABY BOOKS giveaway

Last week’s book contest elicited such great recommendations, we kept doing mad clicky dashes to Amazon.com for details on your picks. Congrats go to winner, Cindi – whose family loves the “Gallagher Girls,” a teen series about a girls’ boarding school for spies-in-training. We’ll have to check out the Wilderking series Angela recommended and Michele’s Percy Jackson suggestion too.

Now, we’re giving away baby-related books, including “The Expert’s Guide to the Baby Years,” “Parenting Magazine’s Baby Must-Haves,” and the adorable board book, “Butterfly Kisses” by Sandra Magsamen. (If your book tastes run to tween and teen fare, more next week!) Click “comments” and tell us … what’s the coolest, most hilarious or most practical baby gift you’ve run across? We’ll draw a winner Friday night.

Posted on Monday, January 21st, 2008
Under: Books, Contest | No Comments »

THE COFFEE-Miscarriage Connection

Coffee by Ric Thornton, MCT Direct As little as two cups of Joe per day can double your chances of miscarriage, according to a new Bay Area study conducted by Kaiser and published this morning in the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology. And it’s not just that Starbucks pick-me-up that’s to blame – it’s caffeine in any form, including tea, soda or hot chocolate. Pregnant women who ingest 200 milligrams or more – the equivalent of about 2 cups of coffee or 5 12-oz. sodas daily – are most at risk, but doctors are also warning women who are planning to get pregnant to avoid caffeine, because the fetus is most at risk during the first 20 to 40 days after the egg is fertilized. For many women, that’s before they even know they’re pregnant.

Posted on Monday, January 21st, 2008
Under: Health & Safety | No Comments »

PARENT TALKS: Penguins, Tuition & More

Brainy kid ILLUS.jpgFrom college tuition help to Club Penguin and iPhones, here’s what’s up on the parent ed scene:
“FAFSA/Financial Aid Workshop”
Jan. 23 at 7 p.m., College Park High, Pleasant Hill. Sponsored by the Mt. Diablo school district (Free) (Plus, don’t miss the free “Cash for College Workshops” now through Feb. 28 throughout Alameda and Contra Costa County.)

“Pink Parenting: Gay & Lesbian Kids”
Jan. 23 at 7:30 p.m., 2340 Jackson St., Fourth Floor, San Francisco
Speaker: Gary Grossman, clinical psychologist. Sponsored by the San Francisco Center for Psychanalysis (Free)

“Cyber Sense”
Jan. 24 at 7 p.m., Alhambra High, Martinez
Free parent forum on social networking sites – Facebook, MySpace and Club Penguin – and cybersafety. Co-sponsored by the Martinez School District and AAUW Martinez branch. Questions? Call AAUW’s Harriett Burt at 925-372-8038.
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Posted on Monday, January 21st, 2008
Under: Parenting Issues | No Comments »

SCHOOL HEADLINES: Speedo porn, fiscal crises and a case of glue

Swimmers Headlines you may have missed:
Southern California police are investigating after Orange County Register reporters discovered  images of speedo-clad high school water polo players from 11 Orange County high schools posted on porn web sites. Needless to say, parents and water polo officials are outraged. “For someone to come in,” said International Water Polo official Joan Gould, “and take what these kids are doing and take it out of context and exploit these images, these kids and their schools – because you can see the school name on the caps – is just horrible.”

The FDA just took an even stronger stance against over-the-counter cold medicines for children under 2, saying those medications have “potentially life-threatening side effects.”

In local news, the state’s fiscal crisis just claimed more victims – teachers’ pay hikes in the Acalanes, Oakley and San Ramon school districts. The county rejected the tentative contracts brokered by teachers unions and management in those districts, saying schools can’t afford those deals in this economic climate.
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Posted on Sunday, January 20th, 2008
Under: Schools | No Comments »

THE BIG Q: What would you do?

?! by Dhiegaum/StockXchng
This is your chance to be the advice columnist. This question popped up recently – inspired, no doubt, by the latest Childhood Matters radio show on toilet training – and rather than offer up our opinions, we thought we’d ask all the parents out there:

“My mother-in-law is pushing us to potty train our 2-year-old, and I’m just not sure he’s ready. What would you do?”

Click “comments” and weigh in with your tips and advice!

Posted on Saturday, January 19th, 2008
Under: Advice | 4 Comments »

THUMBS UP for “The Business of Being Born”

Birth. It’s a miracle. A rite of passage. Big business. And now, the subject of a documentary “The Business of Being Born,” which opened at San Francisco’s Roxie last night with star-studded hoopla, including appearances by director Abby Epstein and producer Ricki Lake of “Hairspray” and talk show fame.

Epstein, fresh from a series of press interviews in New York City, was happy to chat by phone last week from the back of a taxicab, just moments after a somewhat disastrous movie screening at Roosevelt Hospital’s grand rounds. To say that “Business,” the unabashedly pro-midwife, not-so-pro hospital documentary met with dismay there is a gross understatement. “We were like a little rabbit,” Epstein said, “in front of a group of riflemen.”

But the film itself doesn’t come across like the uber-feminist, crunchy granola tract on the evil medical industry those Roosevelt docs feared. Instead, it’s a well-reasoned, disturbing, but ultimately uplifting look at childbirth and the forces that have turned the most natural of human experiences into a mass of medical interventions, skyrocketing C-sections and the second worst infant mortality rate in the modern world.
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Posted on Friday, January 18th, 2008
Under: Babies & Tots, Movies, Parenting Issues | No Comments »

CHILDHOOD MATTERS: Potties

Potty training  (Photo by Ron Ennis, KRT)Got a tot to potty train? Pour yourself a cup of coffee, snuggle into your slippers and tune in to Childhood Matters, the radio show, this Sunday morning for tips on teaching your child to use the toilet. Radio host and parenting expert Rona Renner, RN, brings in experts to answer those thorny questions: How do you know when the time is right? And what’s the best approach? Hear Meg Zweiback, pediatric nurse practitioner and author of “Keys to Toilet Training” and parent educator Marci Gomez as they field questions from callers. It all goes down Sunday at 9 a.m. on 98.1 KISS- FM or 105.1 KOCN-FM. Join the discussion by calling (877) 372-KIDS. And you don’t even have to get out of your pajamas…

Posted on Friday, January 18th, 2008
Under: Advice, Babies & Tots | No Comments »

BABYMOON fashion???

Pea in a Pod Maternity Wear-Resort Collection OK, the very notion of a babymoon – a lavish pre-delivery honeymoonish vacation – was alien to us, but that might just be because we’re hopelessly out of date (or jealous). Now, we discover that not only are women going on babymoons (or so the resort industry would have us believe), but their maternity wear budget is big enough to encompass a special babymoon WARDROBE. Pea in a Pod, Mimi Maternity and similar trendy maternity stores have started carrying babymoon resort lines that include items like the $350 silk jersey number pictured above. No word on what those stunningly high heels cost. Folks, we badly need a reality check. Is everyone going on babymoons? Click a button on the poll, or click “comments” and tell us what you think.

Opinion Polls & Market Research

Posted on Friday, January 18th, 2008
Under: Other | No Comments »

TOPPLING STOVES and Toy Recalls

Recalled Today’s toys-that-hurt missive from the Consumer Product Safety Commission targets “My Little Kenmore,” a pink play stove that combines product placement, gender stereotyping (it’s pink, folks – you think Emeril Jr. is going to play with that?) and topple potential. Open the door and oops. One toddler was bruised after the stove fell on her. Young chefs – or rather, their parents - are supposed to remove the defective bracket connecting the door to the stove. We don’t quite understand how the door stays on if you do that, but the reassembly instructions can be downloaded here.

In other recall news, some 38,000 Cranium Cadoo games have been recalled because the dice are covered in lead paint. Whoa. We’ll hope you haven’t been kissing the dice for luck … or shouting “Snake eyes! Momma needs a new Kenmore!”

Posted on Thursday, January 17th, 2008
Under: Toy Recalls | No Comments »