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Archive for March, 2010

RECALL: 127,000 Kiddie Forks

Recalled kids' utensils If you’ve got one of these kiddie fork/spoon sets, purchased from the Dollar Tree and Deals stores for a buck, take them away from your child at once. The Consumer Product Safety Commission just recalled 127,000 of these sets because the middle prongs of the fork can come off, which poses a choking hazard. The affected sets include Scooby Doo, Tweety and Batman designs (pictured).

Um, is anyone actually giving their toddler a Joker spoon? I’d have thought a Joker knife would be more appropriate, considering the character is a psychopathic mass murderer. I’m just saying…

Posted on Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010
Under: Babies & Tots, Health & Safety | No Comments »

BIZARRE: Kid Directs Air Traffic at JFK

airport Sounds like someone took the notion of “Take Your Kid to Work Day” more than a tad too far. The FAA is investigating why a child directed air traffic at New York City’s main airport a couple of weeks ago. The transmission includes the youngster prepping pilots for takeoff and an adult telling the pilots, “This is what you get, guys, when the kids are out of school.”

The aircraft control tower employees involved have been pulled from their JFK traffic control desks while the FAA investigates. Gee, ya think? Somehow we’d thought unauthorized people weren’t allowed anywhere near air traffic control during takeoffs and landings at one of the planet’s largest airports… on account of the potential to cause, you know, distractions and catastrophic plane crashes and whatnot… Maybe that’s only in Bruce Willis movies…

Posted on Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010
Under: Just Bizarre | No Comments »

FAB Five (Plus One More) for the Weekend

"The Wiz" at Contra Costa College
The Wiz: Toto, we’ve a feeling we’re not in San Pablo anymore! A Bay Area-centric version of “The Wiz” (above)  springs to life on the Contra Costa College campus this week in this drama department production March 3-7. Tickets $8-$15.

Zany Zanes: Grammy award-winning Dan Zanes brings his family-friendly “Woodstock for Kids” extravaganza to Berkeley’s Zellerbach Hall for three shows on March 6 and 7. Tickets $16-$26.
Read the rest of this entry »

Posted on Wednesday, March 3rd, 2010
Under: Family Outings | No Comments »

British Author Says 14-Year-Olds Are Ready to Have Babies

Teenage parents (Illustration/Fresno Bee 20007) Color us speechless. When a famous British author announced last week that 14 was a good age to have babies, we were left just spluttering. You too?

We were reading Strollerderby when we chanced upon the mention that Hilary Mantel, the Brit who won the prestigious Man Booker Prize, had told a newspaper interviewer that at age 14, she would have been ready for children. “Having sex and having babies is what young women are about, and their instincts are suppressed in the interests of society’s timetable,” Mantel told the reporter.

It gets better. And by “better,” I mean worse, of course. In its coverage of the Mantel mouth-off, the Telegraph, a British newspaper, quotes supportive comments from Dr. Claire Alexander, prof at the London School of Economics and editor of a recent research study called “Teenage Parenthood: What’s the Problem?” Teenage parenthood is a good thing, Alexander said, because it “can even provide an impetus for teenage mothers and fathers to strive to provide a better life for their children.” Um, while they’re on welfare? Because last time I checked, you can’t get a job when you’re 14 – other than, you know, babysitting.

Is it just me? Or are these people three wheels short of a baby buggy?

Posted on Monday, March 1st, 2010
Under: Just Bizarre, Teens | No Comments »

FANTASTIC Mr. Fox Giveaway

Fantastic Mr. Fox
Happy Monday! This week, we’re giving away a couple of wonderful books for kids. The first is that Roald Dahl classic, “The Fantastic Mr. Fox,” with photos from the recent movie. And we’re pairing it with The Inside Tree, by Linda Smith a cool new picture book called “The Inside Tree,” by Linda Smith. It’s the story of sweet Mr. Potter (no relation to Harry), who feels sorry for his dog, sleeping alone outside under a tree, so he invites him in and makes him an “inside dog.” And all’s well until he starts feeling sorry for the tree, all alone. So he … well, you’ll see.

And both these books can be yours! Click “comments” and tell us, what’s your family’s favorite book? We’ll draw a winner’s name on Monday, March 8.

Meanwhile, it’s time to give away that Scooby-Doo Laff-a-Lympics DVD from last week, so we’ll draw a name and … Congrats, Cheryl! What fun to read about everyone’s favorite Winter Olympics sport – and we got a kick out of Jason’s suggestion that ice fishing be part of the Olympics. We can hear the announcers now, speaking in hushed, golf-like tones, “We’re in hour 47 of the ice fishing championships and it looks like the Finnish team may be getting a nibble at last…”

Posted on Monday, March 1st, 2010
Under: Uncategorized | 21 Comments »

PARENT TALKS: Tots, Kids & Teens

Tech Tots (Photo by Craig Borck/MCT Direct) Child Development Lecture
March 5 from 6 to 8 p.m. at Habitot Children’s Museum, Berkeley
Lecture by UC Berkeley psychology professor Alison Gopnik, author of “The Philosophical Baby,” on child development topics. The event, open to the public with any donation to the museum, includes wine, cheese and desserts.

Couple’s Workshop: Art & Skill of a Happy Marriage
March 6 from 12:30 to 5 p.m. Founder’s Grove, Lafayette
A couple’s workshop designed to jump-start your relationship and put conflicts to rest, led by Contra Costa Men’s Center director Steven Freemire, MFT, and Catherine Freemire, LCSW. $199 per couple ($169 by Feb. 6).

The Problem of Underage Drinking

March 8 at 7 p.m., Campolindo High, Moraga
Community leaders will come together to share their knowledge, answer questions and provide resources. Among the speakers: Campolindo High Principal Carol Kitchens; Moraga Chief of Police Robert Priebe; Dr. Jan Gurley; and Defense Attorney Mary Carey. Sponsored by the Campolindo Parent Club and Healthy Choices Committee.

Something to add to the list? E-mail us the details or click “comments” and add it right here.

Posted on Monday, March 1st, 2010
Under: Parenting Issues | No Comments »