August 25, 2014

Top 10 Tips for New and Upcoming Mothers

This post is a guest blog post by Amber from www.mybirthwrite.com | For more information on Amber, see her profile at the bottom of this blog post.

First, I am so honored to be a guest blogger and I hope you enjoy the read!  My son Zaccai is now 21 months old; I have grown and changed immensely in these past few years. I am delighted to share my top 10 tips for you new Moms/Dads out there; I hope this finds you peace and guidance.  

1. Your birth plan may or may not go the way you hope – either way, you will need a great friend or partner to help you heal. I went the “all natural” route and my 4 days of labor ended in an emergency cesarean. If you can, join groups to help you through this process, like the ICAN community. I needed someone at 2AM once and these mommas are around the clock. So neat.

2. You may not “love” your baby the instant he or she is born – this is completely normal. You have to take the time to get to know this little one. I remember at 3 weeks old, we clicked. It was really heavenly – but those first 3 weeks were more than miserable. I wish someone would have told me that from the beginning. I felt very guilty that I didn’t have that MOMENT everyone talked about at his birth.

3. Breastfeeding is important – those first few days are vital. Skin-to-skin 24 hours a day. This sounds insane and if people want to come by and see the baby – this may feel uncomfortable. Those first few days it was just me, my husband, my mom and the hospital staff. Absurdly enough I didn’t want anyone to be a part of our first few days except the people that had been a part of the days leading up to my son’s birth. It was almost sacred to me.  

4. You know more than you think – I learned what every coo, cry, squawk and smile meant. How? I have no idea. This is truly a mother’s intuition.

5. You lose most of the pregnancy weight simply by being a mom, nursing and eating healthy  I was “blessed” with a c-section scar instead of stretch marks. Whether you have an incision, stretch marks, or your body has changed… you 'should' truly appreciate it. Your body worked wonders through 40+ weeks of pregnancy and days of labor –embrace those visible signs of bravery.

6. You will cry – You may not know why. You are not alone. You might need a friend or professional to talk to & that is okay. Keep your head up momma, you are doing amazing.

7. You may not recognize your husband or partner – keep pictures around of both of you smiling. It makes it easier to recognize the stranger walking around your house, enough said.

8. Ask for help, accept help  Learn to take showers and brush your teeth when these people offer help.

9. Going back to work is harder and easier than you think  I went back to teaching college students 2 weeks after my intense labor. It was a few hours at night but it was time away to teach [that’s what I love]. I felt like me. It felt great. My husband appreciated me more as a mom because I spent a few hours away the first couple months. I scheduled my pumping session(s) – never missed a beat and have been nursing my boy for 21 months.

10. You will become a parent you never imagined   do things you never imagined and say things you never imagined. That’s okay. Go with what you believe is right for you and your family. We chose gentle parenting/attachment parenting/cloth diapering because that is what works for us. Whatever you decide, parent with love and respect; you are raising a human.

I hope this was helpful and insightful. Being a parent is an extremely difficult role in life, yet so rewarding. Appreciate the time you have with your little one; he or she is only this age today. Breathe in that baby smell and enjoy the ride.

Xoxo, My Birth Write  Amber Green 



About The Author: Amber Green is the proud owner and blogger at the www.mybirthwrite.com blog - "The moment a woman becomes a mother" - A blog dedicated to detailing the journey from woman to motherhood.

August 13, 2014

Having a baby gets you awesome gifts - right or wrong?

Baby Registries are simply wonderful for key life moments from getting married to having a baby.  These services really seem to make our lives easier, don’t they?

Well..... a considered yes is our answer.

Let me explain.

Take a registry list with a pinch of salt

First thing to remember is that retailers make money off of us by selling stuff.  Well, that’s obvious.  But in your enthusiasm and excitement of your baby news, don’t forget the commercial world is sold on selling - to us, to our relatives and to our friends.

How do registries work?

They provide you with a check list of items and suggestions of different products which you could get.  You then pick your list and then email or promote it to your friends and invite them to contribute to your new baby setup by buying gifts for you.

It really is a lovely solution, particularly for a first baby.

Buyer beware

I don’t want to rain on your parade, but please, read this note of caution.

First you do NOT need everything on the registry service list.  No, really you do not.

Second, it’s easy to get carried away wanting the ‘best’ for your child.  But unless you’re made of money, buying top end for something that your child will grow out of within a couple of months is really a waste.  

So here’s how to approach a registry

Read our article about Top 10 Useless Baby Items so you get an idea what you may not need.

Go have fun and pick over that registry list and select what you think you want.

Ask a trusted friend or your Mom and have them check your selections.  Tell them that you want them to help you pick the bare minimum list. Then to have a plus “fun things” list of additions which would be nice to have but are not essential.

Now you’re armed and ready for sharing your edited registry list with your friends and relatives.

Enjoy this - it’s huge fun.

P.S.  Just a quick point - would you consider second hand for some items?

August 10, 2014

Pish Posh Baby Is Doing A Hushamok Giveaway


 

Until the 20th of August you can enter a competition to with a Hushamok with Pish Posh Baby.

Promotion ends 20th of August so hurry :).

Also, while you're checking it out on Facebook, head over to our own Facebook page and give us a like.

August 07, 2014

How To Theme Your Baby's Nursery

So you’ve made it this far, you’re finally in your 3rd trimester and reality has set in, with that your instinct to nest.  It’s an exciting time and of course you want to ensure your baby’s nursery is ready.  But you may want to ask yourself a few questions before you dive head first into what may become a major project.

Here are few things to think as you get ready for the big day:

  • What will the nursery be used for?
  • Is the hope that your baby will be doing the majority or sleeping and napping in the his or her nursery?
  • Do you plan to take the approach of attachment parenting and have your baby close by as much as possible?
  • What sort of theme do you want for the nursery, if any?
  • Will you purchase all brand new items or do you plan to use the same glider your own mother rocked you to sleep in? 

It’s a lot to take on, and sites like Project Nursery really do help as you navigate your way through this daunting and overwhelming process.  A babies room is a special space and it we think it should reflect your families values; the love for you have for your child and your own sense of style and design.

How to approach your nursery and theme

Don’t forget babies sleep upwards of 20 hours in those first few months. So being in a space where both of your are comfortable is essential. We believe in following these simple steps to know you've done what's right by you and your baby.

  1. Start with the essentials - this may seem like a no-brainer, but quite often people can get carried away with projects like these. Make a list of the essentials you need before you go into designing and planning.
  2. Pick a baby safe colour and topic scheme you're personally comfortable in - colours mean all sorts of things, and topics from cars to clouds come in many shapes and sizes. What's important at this step in the process is to focus your designs for your nursery around baby safe things you are personally comfortable with. Again, you'll be in this space quite a lot and if you're uncomfortable with it, that sense of unease could rub off on your baby.
  3. Consider your options for extra stuff - many themed baby rooms we've seen come with a lot of useless and uneconomical items that you simple don't need, like elaborate spectral sticker on the wall. Beautiful and extravagant are two different things, so don't feel obliged to break your time-frame, heart, or wallet. Chances are this room will develop with who your child grows into so going with a minimalist approach gives a chance for you to build the creativity of your child. You can save this project for the days when your baby starts developing likes and dislikes or a creative nature, so that they can make their mark in your home while flexing their creative muscles.
  4. Create your masterpiece! - now go out there, find the safest and most loving of items, and fill your nursery with them. We have a simple idea below that might be just what you're looking for...

The family themed nursery

Here at Hushamok, family is our passion. So instead, we think you should fill your baby's nursery with the items that have defined your family. Keep the creative parts with a white/ clean and blank feel for your child to grown into them creatively, but on shelves and such you can place family trinkets and heirlooms. This helps you stay in touch with your heritage and provide your child with an understand of where they came from as they grow up. It also can help for great storytelling if the items in your family themed nursery come rich with history.

 

Happy decorating out there and most importantly have fun and enjoy.

July 20, 2014

The Hushamok Way - Putting Family First

We have just finished our latest project, a Hushamok video narrative which was an opportunity to share the culture of Hushamok with families.  

It was also a time for us to reflect on who we are and why we do what we do.  

The Hushamok Way

Making Of The Hushamok Way

In the making of the video we connected with our Hushamok community and we asked families that have used Hushamok products to take part in its making.  It was such a wonderful experience to capture a mother's bond her children behind the video camera.  

It was also special to see that babies that slept in our Hammock as newborns are now running around and enjoying the sanctuary of MySeat. Being around Hushamok children is always a proud moment for us and it's the reason we are so committed to giving families that time to connect with each other.

Our wonderful photographer, Tag, who has been dedicated to Hushamok for many years, is equally passionate about creating beautiful and unique experiences with the sole intention that our Hushamok community can connect with us.  We know you already enjoy Tag's images on our product pages.

 

We hope you enjoy watching the videos as much as we loved making them.

July 15, 2014

Baby Myth: "I Don't Need Advice. I Have Mother's Intuition!"

Mother's intuition is the ability to know things about caring for your children without knowing HOW you know them. It's a powerful thing mothers have but it's not all powerful. It lets you be that extra special mother your children know and love.

What Mother's Intuition Can Do For You

The connection that mothers have with their children is a special thing indeed. As that connection grows, mothers tend to know things about their children without knowing HOW they know those things. Things like if their child is upset or whether or not they forgot something for school, perhaps even when your newborn baby is hungry or just needs to be held. What it gives mothers the power to do is the ability to be an extra special person in their children's lives. When a mother's intuition senses are tingling it's up to them to act on those tinglings.

What It CAN'T Do

However a mother's intuition can only go so far. While it can help you figure out when your baby is hungry, it doesn't help you with what they need to be fed or whether or not your newborn can take solids now. That comes from planning, research and attention.

Moral Of The Story? Be Proactive!

Rely on mother's intuition to help you become that special mom that your kids love, but rely on asking for help, research and planning when it comes to knowing what is right for them!

July 09, 2014

The Only 3 Things Your Newborn Baby Needs

Hushamok was created by real parents with real experience and real love for their children. Over the years our founders have spent parenting, they've noticed a simple truth:


You don't need to buy a whole lot of junk to truly care for your newborn. Instead you have to focus on these 3 key things...


Sleep

Your newborn baby is just getting used to the world and the fact that they just experienced the biggest event in life - birth. As your child develops they'll want lots of sleep, and they need you to help that happen.


Food

Nutrients are vital to proper development of a newborn and nothing beats mum's breast milk. This is sometimes difficult but shouldn't let mothers down if it is. There are alternatives and not being able to breast feed your baby does not affect your ability to mother that baby.


You

Yes, you! You're going to be a parent (or you're ready to dive back into it) and the one thing your baby needs most of all is YOU! Nurturing to help them to grow and understand their own needs and teach them and yourself how to meet those needs. It's something deeper than Sleep and Food. It's a sense of caring and protection and endless love as you help guide them into the great big world.

July 01, 2014

The Values Of Hushamok

Uniqueness & The Importance Of Culture

We at Hushamok are unique because we believe in individuality. Our designs are unlike anything else and instantly recognizable. Hushamok also believes in the importance of honouring culture which is why we took a very old and global concept and used it as a roadmap for our designs.

 

Passion & Embracing Nature In Our Designs

We are a passionate lot and believe in our vision which is to make safe baby and children’s furniture, sourcing natural materials wherever possible and using natural elements such as motion to help families to both sleep better and relax.

 

Family & Connections

We're also a connected group that puts great emphasis on family.  Founders, Julie (from Boston, USA) and her husband Mark (from Capetown SA), started Hushamok out of the care and affection they placed on their family. They're two little Kiwi boys are the inspiration behind Hushamok.  Read Our Story.

 

A Company With A Conscience

Our company has a conscience because it chooses to. We love our customers and community because we want to live in a world that cares. We’re always excited when our Hushamok families share things with us and get involved, so we hope you can become part of the dream too. Good communication and partnerships hold great value in everything we do.


So in short, we're ready to welcome you into the Hushamok family. We've started a blog to bring you baby care tips and will always answer you questions through our Facebook and Twitter pages.

 

We look forward to hearing from you!

 
June 25, 2014

A video of your Hushamok competition entries

As a thank you for all who sent in photos for our recent competition to win a Hushamok, we made a video compilation.
 

We appreciate each and every photo, while cherishing the moments you've shared.

Keep up to date with our competitions and activities...

If you missed out on this competition or just want to keep updated with what we do, then follow us on our Facebook and Twitter pages. We'll see you there!

June 19, 2014

Top 10 Useless Baby Items

There are loads of incidental items, add-ons, gadgets and knick knacks that baby stores tell you should buy. Some of them even go so far as to have a horrendously long list of items you MUST HAVE to take care of a newborn. The truth is though, you barely even need half of 'em.
We went and took a look at these lists and broke them down into our top 10 most useless baby items. The stuff you're encouraged to pick up but don't need. Enjoy saving money!

Top 10 most useless items for newborn babies:

  1. Crib Bedding Sets or Bumper Pads = These can actually contribute to the possibility of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS) through accidental suffocation during sleep. Instead, swaddle your baby and don't make the room too hot or use heavy blankets. You can also cradle them to sleep, warming them with your own body heat.

  2. Baby Wipe Warmer = There are a whole host of issues related to warm wipes. Most notable is that damp, warm places are incubating habitats for bacteria and you don't want to be wiping your baby with something like that. They also frequently dry out your wipes rendering them near useless. Instead, hold each wipe in your clean hand for a moment to get rid of the cold sensation before use.
    Another point to mention is that some baby wipe warmers have been recalled due to being potential fire hazards. Taking the situation into your own hands (both figuratively and literally) is the best course of action!

  3. Baby Shoes = We don't want to say this twice - babies don't need shoes until they can walk! When they come into the world their muscles haven't developed enough for their legs to hold them up and it will be a while before they're up on their own two feet. You're also constraining their body's ability to breathe and develop.

  4. Baby Food Maker = These are glorified food processors. If you have one at home, or even a good milk shake blender, you're already set. Don't forget to take care of lumps though by forking through every spoonful. That's basic safety and should event be done if using a baby food maker. Don't forget to introduce lumps later though to help them eat more solid foods. This is a gradual process.

  5. Electric Baby Bottle/Food Warmer = These are just hot plates. Save yourself some money and heat your food or bottles in your oven or in a pot. Be careful about using a microwave as they are proven health risks, while also sapping the nutrients out of food they heat. Don't re-heat food more than once and be sure to sir it around to mix in hot spots to minimise the danger of burns.

  6. Baby Sterilising System = Sterilising your baby's milk bottles and other equipment is very important. But to be honest, baby sterilisers are just pots of boiled water that use steam and heat to sterilise. Real solution? Boil some water in a saucepan! This is just as good a sterilizing system as any and won't cost you an arm and a leg.

  7. Bumbo Baby Seat = Not only does it take 3-5 months before a baby can support their own head (a requirement for use of these seats), it has also be analysed by pediatricians and debunked. They restrict movement without adding anything to posture. More often than not these seats are just used as trapping devices to make sure your baby doesn't go anywhere while you're away. Instead, let your baby move freely in their environment and encourage movement of any kind.

  8. Diaper Pails (Diaper Dekor or Diaper Genie) = These do NOT control odors! Plus you have to keep buying expensive refill bags for them. Instead, simple throw the diapers into your outside garbage container for each use, or designate a bin for diapers which you sterilise and deodorise separately. If you get a system going it won't disrupt your day to day life at all and again, will remove potential smells from your home.

  9. Polyester Sleep Sacks = Swaddling is great but we have issue with trapping baby in non-breathable and artificial material.  They're  also highly flammable and often applied with toxic flame retardant chemicals. Cotton and wool sacks are a better option during those cold winter months.

  10. Baby Lotions & Powders =  Babylotions and powders are not necessities. Yes, they smell great but they is nothing like the natural smell of a baby.  And be careful of talcum powdersas they can be harmful to your baby by causing respiratory problems. Pediatricians are now skeptical of the use of both these products and recommend the use of corn starch based powders if anything. Instead, try to employ natural and safe ways to protect and nurture your baby's skin such as regular light bathing and vegetable or a plant based oil.  Don't forget babies put everything in their mouths!

Moral of the story? Look out for the stuff you need rather than the stuff you don't. If you're looking to buy baby items always research what each item does and, ways in which they could be replaced. Your baby is sure to be the light in your life, and you don't want to waste a cent on something isn't a true benefit for them.