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The Poetry of Parenthood

Sunday, April 22, 2007
This PoetryFoundation.org podcast focuses on poems related to parenthood.

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| posted by Ann D @ 4:12 PM

Canadian Moms in Other Time Zones

Thursday, April 19, 2007
You may want to tune into Outfront if you can still catch it in your timezone. It was beautifully done. Kudos to singer/songwriter Heather McLeod for sharing the story of how her song "Basket of Roses" came to be.
Thursday, April 19, 2007, 8:45 p.m.
19/04/2007

Six years ago, musician Heather McLeod felt a song nagging at her heels - something that just wouldn't go away. When she sat down to write it, what emerged was something that both confused and frightened her. It was a song about the love that a mother can give to a child who has passed away. Heather didn't know where this song had come from. And then a few years later she gave birth to her first child, Ella Rose. Hear “Basket of Roses” on Outfront, tonight.

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:57 PM

Live CottageCam Action!

This is the time of year when Kawartha cottagers are checking George Macdougall's CottageCam a couple of times per day, to see if the ice has disappeared yet.

(My cottage is about 45 minutes north of George's cottage on Little Gold Lake, so I've got a vested interest in the live, ice-melting action.)

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| posted by Ann D @ 3:25 PM

Lighthearted, Startling Statistics: Beauty Can Co-Exist Among the Dirty Dishes and Piles of Laundry


I'm always fascinated by the creative approaches that are used to market to mothers. Some are incredibly smart and used to do really good things for moms and families -- and some are horrible and cheesy and used to undercut mothers' self-esteem in order to flog more stuff -- something that keeps the economy churning, but also makes my stomach churn. This campaign falls somewhere on that continuum. I'll let you decide where.

Suave and Sprint have partnered with MindShare Entertainment to develop in the motherhood.com -- which is being billed as "the first ever mom-focused web series."

in the motherhood.com stars Leah Remini of The King of Queens fame and is being featured on MSN from April 17 through June. The web series also boasts "an integration partnership" with The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

To come up with scripts for the "hectic yet always humorous lives of three mom girlfriends," the shows' producers are turning to real moms. (As is the trend these days, the show is being billed as "By Moms, For Moms, About Moms.")

Moms are encouraged to go to in the motherhood.com to sound off about "universal experiences all moms share such as 'your child's worst public meltdown,' 'how to put the me back in mommy' or 'your funniest mother-in-law child-rearing advice' so that these universal experiences can be developed into future webisodes for the show." (This got me thinking about other universal experiences all moms share, like being patronized and misunderstood by advertisers -- and the entertainment industry. Are the producers at in the motherhood.com really prepared for how real those real mom posts could get?)

Anyway, back to how this whole thing is going to work. Once real moms -- the show's "real behind-the-scenes stars" -- have submitted their ideas, the online mom community will choose the best entries. These will then be developed into a series of webisodes by Hollywood screenwriters. At that point, according to the press release, moms will be able to enjoy games, blogging, and "peer-to-peer" conversation at in the motherhood.com. The webisodes will also be available for viewing at suave.com, on Sprint TV, and via Sprint's Power Vision phones. (Sprint bills itself as the company with the phone that "allows mothers to capture and share those unforgettable moments with family and friends without being tethered to a computer or lugging around a camera" -- but apparently it want to encourage moms to tune into webisodes of in the motherhood.com while they're untethered.)

But wait! There's more!

This is my favourite part of the press release. I'm going to keep it for my mom culture hall of fame.

"Both Suave and Sprint have robust marketing efforts focused on moms. Specifically, Suave has a range of beauty products from hair care to skin care to deodorants that help mom put beauty back on her to-do list. Suave offers moms high quality beauty products at a great price, providing her with guilt free beauty solutions. The Suave ad campaign targets her with lighthearted, startling statistics aimed at showing her that beauty can co-exist among the dirty dishes and piles of laundry. Beyond its advertising, Suave has an exclusive partnership with the Hot Moms Club, an online community of empowered, confident mothers who are committed to redefining motherhood. Additionally, to further understand their mom target, the brand has developed a study of 3,000 moms nationwide, which will offer an in-depth look at the roles moms face today -- not only their roles as mothers but also their roles as women."

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| posted by Ann D @ 12:45 PM

Who is This Woman?

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

Purse From Tanya
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

I've noticed that I'm starting to look happy and relaxed again. (I hadn't noticed it in the mirror, but it's starting to show in photos.) Taking some time off has been A Really Good Thing. *



* Not to be confused with A Good Thing.

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| posted by Ann D @ 11:12 AM

Pregnant Mannequins


Pregnant Mannequins
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

The mannequins in the Thyme Maternity booth at BabyTime, as the show was being dismantled. (I can't remember if they had heads while the show was on. (The best-dressed pregnant mannequins don't have heads these days.)

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| posted by Ann D @ 11:07 AM

Jordan Maher from Moms in the City

Monday, April 16, 2007

Jordan Maher from Moms in the City
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

I thought it would be fun to take a photo of Jordan Maher from Moms in the City smack-dab in the middle of "her city." Mission accomplished.

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:59 PM

Julie Cole from Mabel's Labels


Julie Cole from Mabel's Labels
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

Captured for the camera at BabyTime: Julie Cole, who runs a highly successful business -- Mabel's labels -- while raising five young children. And she always looks as relaxed and calm as she does right here. What is in those labels? Happy adhesive?

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:56 PM

Natalie Aston and Renée Kaufman of Hatch Maternity


Natalie Aston and Renée Kaufman of Hatch Maternity
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

I had the pleasure of meeting Natalie (left) and Renée (right, sporting the maternal curves) from Hatch Maternity. I was very impressed by their collection. It's stylish, smart, and made out of comfortable, easy-care fabrics.

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:53 PM

Sarah Morgenstern from SavvyMom.ca


Sarah Morgenstern from SavvyMom.ca
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

Sarah Morgenstern from SavvyMom.ca had a gorgeous booth -- and she was giving out the ever-popular SavvyMom.ca stickers.

And speaking of SavvyMom.ca, I noticed they've added a cool feature to their site -- the SavvyMom Smilebox (multi-media, user-designed greeting cards). I'm on a Mac, so I won't be able to play with the Smilebox for a while yet, but it looks like a lot of fun.

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:52 PM

Sara Bingham from WeeHands


Sara Bingham from WeeHands
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

I snapped this photo of Sara Bingham -- founder of WeeHands -- while she was busy explaining what sign language classes are all about. (Unfair to do a walk-by snapshot, I know, but Sara was busy talking -- or signing -- whever I wasled by.)

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:49 PM

Joanne from KiddingAroundToronto.com


Joanne from KiddingAroundToronto.com
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

I caught up with Joanne from KiddingAroundToronto.com -- but just barely! She was constantly on the run.

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:47 PM

Tracey Ruiz of The Sleep Doula


Tracey Ruiz of The Sleep Doula
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

Need Sleep? You couldn't need sleep more than the Sleep Doula herself did by Day 3 of BabyTime. She ended up heading off to a birth on the afternoon of Day 2 (she's also a birth and postpartum doula) and didn't get any sleep until after the mom in question gave birth around the time BabyTime was due to open for Day 3.

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:46 PM

Maureen Dennis and Another One of the Moms (and Babies) fromWeeWelcome.ca


Maureen Dennis and Another One of the Moms (and Babies) from WeeWelcome.ca
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

Encountered far, far away from her booth: Maureen Dennis from WeeWelcome.ca and another one of her WeeWelcome.ca co-workers (and a WeeWelcome.ca offspring).

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:45 PM

Denise Williams from Matter Company


Denise Williams from Matter Company
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

Denise was back at BabyTime with her popular collection of natural skin care products for moms and babies . I have loved Denise's products ever since I first wrote about them for Flare Pregnancy about five years ago.

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:44 PM

Julie Gallagher of The Birth Experience


Julie Gallagher of The Birth Experience
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

Julie Gallagher -- childbirth educator extraordinaire -- was hanging out in her booth @ The Birth Experience.

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:40 PM

Nick and Sandy Pedrogao of Oh Baby! Magazine


Nick and Sandy Pedrogao of Oh Baby! Magazine
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

Nick and Sandy Pedrogao of Oh Baby! Magazine made the rounds at the show on Sunday, which meant I had the chance to meet their son (who was no doubt the inspiration of Oh Baby! Magazine). Will Oh Toddler! be next?

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| posted by Ann D @ 8:35 PM

BabyTime Lost and Found

Saturday, April 14, 2007

BabyTime Lost and Found
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

If your baby left this at the Wiley booth at the BabyTime Show in Toronto on Friday, we still have it at the booth. (Eventually, we'll take it over to the Lost and Found.)

Looking forward to a happy baby-and-toy reunion....

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| posted by Ann D @ 9:18 AM

License Plate: Envy 1


License Plate: Envy 1
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas

A license plate noted on my way out of BabyTime last night. Will the other deadly sins be at the show today and tomorrow?

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| posted by Ann D @ 9:17 AM

Sleep Solutions @ BabyTime


Sleep Solutions @ BabyTime
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas

A close up of my Sleep Solutions book @ BabyTime. This definitely continues to be the hot topic amongst parents.

I'd say 90% of the questions I answered at the show related to sleep -- and parents always feel like they're doing the wrong thing, no matter what approach -- or approaches -- they've tried. What's with all the sleep guilt?

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| posted by Ann D @ 9:16 AM

Wiley Booth at BabyTime: My Table


Wiley Booth at BabyTime: My Table
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

Here's a display featuring the Canadian editions of many of my Wiley titles -- and me looking tired but happy after a full day of delivering seminars, signing books, and talking to parents and people who work with parents. Note: I'll be at the show today and tomorrow (Saturday and Sunday).

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| posted by Ann D @ 9:16 AM

Tanya Moore of Healthy Sprouts Frozen Organic Baby Food


Tanya Moore of Healthy Sprouts Frozen Organic Baby Food
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

I was delighted to reconnect with Tanya Moore, President of Healthy Sprouts Frozen Organic Baby Food. She brought me up to speed on developments in her business (much good news!) and we had a great chat.

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| posted by Ann D @ 9:15 AM

Hey, Toronto Mom Bloggers!

Friday, April 13, 2007
If you're a Toronto mom blogger, make sure you pop by and introduce yourself if you're coming to BabyTime this weekend.

I'll be hanging out at the Wiley booth when I'm not speaking.

Or I'll be in standing in line to buy coffee.

Or snapping photos of familiar faces around the show.

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| posted by Ann D @ 7:59 AM

Late-Breaking News from the BabyTime.ca Baby Show Trenches!

Wednesday, April 11, 2007
My friend Tracey Ruiz is going to be speaking on "Tips from the Trenches: Birth and Postpartum" on Sunday at 2 pm. I will forgive you if you go to Tracey's workshop instead of mine (I speak on Sunday at 2:30 pm, as well as at a few other times during the show) because Tracey is a wonderful person, a talented doula, my partner in sleep crime, etc. But you can go to Tracey's seminar and my seminar if you map out your weekend with the same careful precision you may have used to take on the garage-sale or thrift store circuit.

(Tracey: I looked for you on the schedule earlier in the week and either you weren't there or I couldn't find you. Am I losing my mind or did your seminar just get added to the roster?)

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| posted by Ann D @ 4:49 PM

Social Justice is in Everyone's Interest


Social Justice is in Everyone's Interest
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas

This t-shirt is being sold as a fundraiser by the Peterborough Social Planning Council. I'm a member of the Board of Directors of this terrific, grassroots, community-based organization in Peterborough, Ontario, so if you'd like a t-shirt for yourself or for that hard-to-buy for family member (remember, Mother's Day and Father's Day are just around the corner), I'd be happy to take orders and fulfill them for you. Contact Florence in my office for details.

The t-shirts are available in S, M, L, XL and the copy reads "Social Justice is in Everyone's Interest. Peterborough Social Planning Council." They sell for $15 Cdn. We'll also have to charge for shipping (so that we don't lose money by helping to raise funds for the PSPC), but it doesn't cost much to mail a t-shirt -- just a few dollars.

You will, of course, look extra cool in your hometown because people will think you come from Peterborough, know someone from Peterborough, or you've vacationed in Peterborough. That alone is worth $15 (plus shipping), don't you think?

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| posted by Ann D @ 11:25 AM

Signed, Sealed, and Delivered


Signed, Sealed, and Delivered
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas

These stamps arrived in the mail recently -- on an envelope from Sarah Z. They were so gorgeous I decided to keep them rather than throwing them away. This is why my office looks the way it does -- like a walk-in scrapbook.

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| posted by Ann D @ 11:14 AM

The Best Sign Ever


The Best Sign Ever
Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas

Spotted on my way to work today. Woo hoo!

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| posted by Ann D @ 10:39 AM

MothersClick and Cook and Publish....

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

MothersClick is publishing a cookbook to raise funds for The Boys' and Girls' Clubs of America. What's cool about this project is that it will consist of favorite family recipes as submitted by (and voted on by) moms online -- the Internet equivalent of the classic women's group fundraising cookbook:

"Submissions for recipes are now being accepted and will continue to be until April 16, 2007. Moms across America, and worldwide, are invited to share their favorite family recipes by submitting them through MothersClick. Visit Cookbookformoms.com or go directly to MothersClick to enter recipes and learn more about the project. The recipe collection focuses on family favorites, recipes that are quick and healthy for busy families, and dishes that can be prepared with children."

I recently became a member of the Board of Advisors for MothersClick, so I really should send in my all-time favourite recipe: "there's no bread in the house" emergency tea biscuits. They really are yummy. I think I know the recipe from scratch.... Hmm. Better not rely on memory. I'll add "submit recipe to MothersClick" to my "to do" list at Remember the Milk. Hope I don't bring down the server. My various to do lists are getting awfully long.

Related:
Blurb.com

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| posted by Ann D @ 10:52 AM

BabyTime Show

Monday, April 09, 2007

I'm going to be part of the BabyTime Show at the Toronto International Centre this weekend. If you check out the show schedule, you'll see that I'm going to be offering workshops on the topics of

  • Sleep Solutions for Your Baby, Toddler, and Preschooler at 11 am on Friday, 11 am and 3 pm on Saturday and 11 am on Sunday;

  • Mealtime Solutions for Your Baby, Toddler, and Preschooler on Friday at 2:30 pm and Sunday at 2:30 pm.


  • My friend Catherine Marion, co-host of the Mom Show, will also be at the show. Catherine is one of the nicest, most down-to-earth people on the planet, let alone in show biz, so you won't want to miss her Q and A sessions (Friday at 1 pm and 3 pm). (Hint: Plan to go to her 1 pm session so that you will still be able to take in both of my Friday workshops.) :-)

    Dr. Joey Shulman, author of Winning the Food Fight: Every Parent's Guide to Raising a Healthy, Happy Child and one of the friendliest and most energetic authors I know, will be talking about children's nutrition on Saturday at 12:00 pm.

    If you're wondering who else is exhibiting at the show, check out this list of vendors on the BabyTime website.

    Show Hours, Directions, Etc.

    Related:
    Experience Toronto: Babytime Show Review: "The seminar program at the BabyTime Show is a huge component of the event.... Seminars are ongoing and range from stage appearances to interactive hands on classes."

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    | posted by Ann D @ 12:48 PM

    Barbra Streisand Day at Value Village

    Sunday, April 08, 2007

    Barbra Streisand Day at Value Village
    Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

    I spotted these Barbra Streisand posters for sale at the Value Village store in Burlington, Ontario, about two weeks ago and couldn't resist snapping a photo. Clearly, some Streisand fan decided that their poster collection had to go. Or perhaps the posters got the heave-ho as the result of a nasty breakup. (Who wants to have to stare down "The Way We Were" each time they enter the in-house Streisand Shrine? Not someone who's stuck on the wrong side of bitter.)

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    | posted by Ann D @ 7:54 PM

    What Should This Man Learn About Cleaning a Gun?

    Thursday, April 05, 2007

    What Should This Man Learn About Cleaning a Gun?
    Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

    [and why won't this woman stop knitting?]

    Photo caption from page 318 of Health for Canadians by Rae Chittick, The Macmillan Company of Canada, 1956.

    One of my finds from my shopping spree at The Highway Book Shop.

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    | posted by Ann D @ 10:07 PM

    Canned Meat Magic


    Canned Meat Magic
    Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

    "There's real meal magic in canned meats. Processors have done all the laborious preparatory work for you. Modern canning methods, aided by American Can Company research, insure perfect safety and top-flight quality." Found at The Highway Bookshop in Cobalt Ontario. (Listed for $1; purchased for 50% off.)

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    | posted by Ann D @ 10:05 PM

    The Highway Book Shop, Cobalt, Ontario


    The Highway Bookshop, Cobalt, Ontario
    Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

    On the way home from Kapuskasing, we stopped in at the Highway Book Shop in Cobalt, Ontario, where I shopped for about two hours, loading up on an entire bookshelf's worth of vintage childcare, etiquette, and marriage advice books -- enough to give me blogging fare for many months to come.

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    | posted by Ann D @ 10:04 PM

    To Kapuskasing and Back


    Nicole and Michele from The Northern Oasis Bed and Breakfast in Kapuskasing
    Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

    Then I headed off to Kapuskasing to do some workshops for the local Early Years Centre. (Here's a photo of Nicole and Michele from The Northern Oasis Bed and Breakfast -- the place to stay if you're heading to Kap.)

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    | posted by Ann D @ 9:57 PM

    Rolling the Sleep Dice....


    Sleep Dice
    Originally uploaded by Ann Douglas.

    It's been ages since I posted anything to my blog. (Or at least it seems that way.) Last Friday night, I was in Burlington, co-presenting a workshop on sleep with Tracey Ruiz. This is one of the photos I snapped while I was coming up with a cover for our workshop booklet. (This one didn't make the final cut.)

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    | posted by Ann D @ 9:55 PM