World Pneumonia Day, November 2

“It surprises most people to learn that pneumonia kills more children than any other disease – taking more than 2 million young lives annually,” former U.S. Senate Majority Leader and Save the Children Board member Bill Frist, MD and co-author Dr. Richard Sezibera, Rwanda`s Minister of Health, said in this week’s edition of The Lancet.

Image courtesy of Save the Children
Image courtesy of Save the Children

Pneumonia takes the lives of more children under 5 than measles, malaria, and AIDS combined. The disease takes the life of one child every 15 seconds, and accounts for 20% of all deaths of children under 5 worldwide.

To be quite honest, I can be included in the ‘surprised’ contingent.

Wear-Blue-Jeans-Vertical-JPEGInstead of the usual posts focusing on material goods, today I will be focusing on a much more serious issue.  If I can help it, I’m hoping to challenge my naivety and help spread the word by taking part in the Global Pneumonia Summit on the First Annual World Pneumonia Day today, November 2. Nearly 100 leading global health organizations from around the world are convening in NYC to recognize World Pneumonia Day to urge policymakers to help prevent and treat pneumonia.

I was recently tapped as one of the 5 top tier bloggers to attend this  event on behalf of Vicks, and I couldn’t be more honored to be a part of this fight. Vicks is an official member of the Global Coalition Against Childhood Pneumonia and has partnered with Save the Children to help and deliver treatment to children stricken with pneumonia all over the world. As part of this effort, I hope to absorb and share as much as I can, as part of this incredibly important outreach.

Join me as I live tweet and blog from the event to help educate and change the way the world responds to childhood pneumonia.

In the meantime, please feel free to read more about World Pneumonia Day, follow World Pneumonia Day on Twitter and if you can, wear blue jeans.


Yup, jeans.

To spread awareness about the single largest cause of death in children worldwide, netizens are urging everyone to observe it by wearing a pair of blue jeans.

Please stay tuned or follow me on Twitter for the latest updates from the Summit.

Earth’s Best to Roll Out New Products

A few weeks ago, together with some other parenting bloggers and members of the media, Earth’s Best invited me to attend a luncheon at Rouge Tomate in honor of their 25th anniversary. Even though I spent most of the luncheon being a mom since the kid was having a tough time in the childcare area, I missed most of the presentations, but did get to hear snippets of about Earth’s Best history and future.

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American Terry Co. Organic New Baby Gift Box

At the Big City Mom’s Biggest Baby Shower, I saw so many awesome gift ideas.  I’m in baby shower planning mode since I’ll be an auntie very soon.  And since I haven’t posted about baby gift ideas in awhile, I thought I’d mention the Organic New Baby gift box from American Terry Co. that I spotted a few weeks ago.


Soft to the touch, this organic gift set includes a baby hooded towel, a multi-use baby cloth that can be used for burping, travel, etc., a wash cloth and a pair of bath booties.  Unlike other gift sets, this one was so soft and fluffy and completely gift-worthy.

American Terry Organic gift set

Everyone always says that you can’t ever have enough bath towels and blankets for the baby, and , when they’re this soft and cozy for baby, I totally agree.  We received a billion towels and blankets as gifts and I cherish and still use every single one!

But without a doubt, by default, this super soft  set by American Terry would always find its way to the top of the pile.

The set, which can be monogrammed for an additional charge, can be found online and retails for $56.

Yum-O! Lunch Program Launches

I had quite the interesting morning; it was actually a super yummy morning! I’m in the midst of catching up on posts and organizing photos, but I thought I’d share a few photos from my morning with Rachel Ray and Sen. Gillibrand at P.S. 89 / I.S. 289 in Tribeca.


Together with a few other bloggers, I was asked to attend a media event for the launch of Rachel Ray’s Yum-o! Organization’s new partnership with New York City’s Department of Education, Office of SchoolFood. The Senator and Rachel Ray are both advocates of keeping kids healthy and fighting childhood obesity, and I’ll be sure to share more about what they had to say.


As much as I love awesome kid products, I’m just as passionate about learning and sharing about healthy eating and wellness, in general. I’ve written about healthy eating and the reform of nutrition standards here on NKT, and so, participating in this very informative event and to be able provide exclusive coverage on NKT was such an honor.

There’s much more to come!

The Grass is Greener

…on the counter top!

The forward-thinking, creative minds over at Boon have done it again with another fantastic idea. They’ve combined a very simple idea and design to create a very cool countertop drying rack that channels a patch of grass.


The Grass Countertop Drying Rack features a two-piece design where baby and kid accoutrements rest on the blades of glass to dry, as water drains into the detachable lower tray. Grass is dishwasher-safe, in addition to being BPA, PVC and Phthalate-free.

Because of our small space, I appreciate kid products that can blend with our modern design, or in this case, add a bit of fun without being too cartoon-y. I love the clean lines, fun design and affordability of this new product ($19.99) from Boon. No word yet on when it’ll be out in stores, but I’m sure it’ll be available very soon!

Vote for HAPPYbaby on Shine A Light

A couple of weeks ago, we noticed an AMEX commercial that touted a familiar colorful logo as one of its finalists in the Shine a Light program, a contest that recognizes small businesses. After a second glance, I realized that the colorful logo belonged to Happy Baby, one of the first companies that ever reached out to me, not to mention one of my favorite brands in the green marketplace and makers of organic baby foods.


My review of Happy Bellies rice cereal on my original Babyrific site is still one of my most trafficked blog posts ever. It’s really no surprise, what with Happy Baby’s great line of products and inspiring business model. Their emphasis on sustainable agriculture and instilling healthy eating habits right from the start are all facets that any parent can appreciate. But perhaps, it’s Project Peanut Butter, their program that provides food for starving children in Malawi, that sets Happy Baby apart from the rest.

As a socially responsible company that produces a truly wonderful product, I think Happy Baby is a well deserving finalist in the AMEX/NBC Universal contest. As an entrepreunerial mama to my own happy baby, I champion the great small business who are paving the way, so I wanted to share my thoughts on HappyBaby and ask you to support this inspiring small business. When you have a chance, submit a vote for HappyBaby in the Shine A Light Contest before October 16. (You have to register but it’s quick and easy!)

The winning small business, voted on by the public, will be announced on October 19th. In addition to the $50,000 in grant money and $50,000 in marketing support from American Express, the winning small business will be featured on MSNBC`s small business show, “Your Business.”

Good Luck HappyBaby!

Big City Moms Biggest Baby Shower

Last night, I attended the Big City Moms Biggest Baby Shower Ever, one of my most favorite events. This time, instead of attending as a new or expectant mama, I attended as press. That’s right, I perused hot strollers and noshed on cupcakes while admiring all the beautiful, glowing and glamorous NYC moms, all in the name of The Next Kid Thing! I remember telling one of my friends there that I certainly don’t remember being nearly as glamorous as many of the stiletto-heeled moms I saw in attendance! Wowza, there were some hot mamas there!


But that’s the beauty of NYC, everyone is so diverse: there moms that are very fashion forward, some are very knowledgeable about the latest trends in baby gear and then there are those who are just generally in the know. What ever it may be, it seems this is a hotbed for parents with discerning taste and we’re all influenced by one another. And because of that, there’s always a plethora of events showcasing the latest and greatest in kid and baby gear, which is part of the reason for me starting this blog.

Trust me, I’m not the most fashionable or in the know, but as a reporter by trade, innately, I love investigating and revealing these great finds.

If you’ve been with me since day one, one of my first posts was about the Spring Biggest Baby Shower. The fall event was just as fabulous, but with even more space for moms to spread out and check out the goods. This event once again took place at the American Girl Store on Fifth Ave. in NYC, but unlike the Spring event, this one occupied three whole floors, and it was gorgeous!

I know I haven’t even finished my wrap up of the Holiday Showcase, which is coming…but in the coming days, I will divulge some fabulous finds from the Biggest Baby Shower as well! As I edit and organize photos and media kits, for now, check out these hot products that I eyed at the event!


Portable and Huggable: Mobi TykeLight GloMate

Because of the husband’s job, sometimes we get to try out new products or test out samples that we wouldn’t otherwise have the chance. The TykeLight GloMate from Mobi is the latest cool gadget that we had the chance to try out, coincidentally on our most recent roadtrip.


The TykeLight GloMate is a new take on the old school nightlights. This nightlight is rechargeable, portable and even huggable. On our 350 mile roadtrip back to our hometown, a trip that we take way too often, we try to find ways to entertain the toddler when he isn’t sleeping in the backseat. Since we haven’t succumbed to the car dvd player, toys and music are our savior. This time, right at sunset, we broke out the TykeLight GloMate and the little guy didn’t let go until we made our destination, hours after he’d fallen asleep.  The soft, colorful glow was so comforting and never overpowering—a perfect complement to our bedtime routine.
We have various other nightlights and sound machines that we’ve used since the baby days, but the TykeLight GloMate is the first that we can bring on roadtrips or snuggle with. As we speak, the kid is pretending it’s his own little baby and shushing it to “sleep.”

Bedtime can get rough, but having consistency at bedtime is key. The TykeLight GloMate is the perfect size for toddlers to tote to bed or on the go, yet ideal for bigger kids to use in their bedroom, too. The TykeLight GloMate glows blue, green, red, violet or cycle through the rainbow of colors. It can glow for 10 whopping hours per charge and features a 15-minute dimmer when the kid falls asleep.

Because of its functionality and portability, the TykeLight Glomate is one of my favorite kid gadgets to date. At just $20, I foresee the TykeLight GloMate becoming one of my go-to gifts for my new mom friends.

Back to School Must Have: Lovable Labels

For most kids, school has been underway for a few weeks now.  While most families have already satisfied their schooLovable Labels Bear_withTAG_8 (120x120)l supplies shopping list, there will always be those lingering must haves.  Since our family vacation coincided with Labor Day and a lot of my energy was exerted into preparing for the trip leading up to my cousin’s wedding, I didn’t have a chance to do a Back to School Shopping Guide.  And so this week, I will be featuring my Back to School Must Haves.

IMG_0459Moms and dads with kids in school and daycare know how pertinent it is to label every single item.  My kid has lost entire outfits at daycare because I failed to label them!  Well, thanks to Lovable Labels, we can set our Sharpies down since they’ve made labeling a breeze.

Lovable Labels kindly sent our family the Back to School Pack to review, and I’ve been on a labeling frenzy ever since.  Even though my kid isn’t in school yet, as a family who is constantly on the go, The Back to School Pack is ideal for all of our labeling purposes.  We received the black labels with a fun little dinosaur graphic that I adore.  I labeled our playground toys with the slimline labels since we go to the park every day, and those toys can be exchanged with numerous little hands.  The labels are durable, distinctive and pretty darn cute!
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Jenny McCarthy unveils Too Good

Jenny McCarthy is no stranger to vocalizing important topics, specifically ones that pertain to parenting. In line with her (and many parents’) belief to build and maintain a better environment for children, McCarthy will be launching a line of affordable, non-toxic infant & juvenile products. After reading on Twtitter that McCarthy was spotted at this week’s ABC Kids Expo in Vegas, it makes so much more sense. McCarthy, who has partnered with PEM, officially unveiled the line, Too Good, at the expo.

McCarthy’s line of kiddie products will include bedding, bath textiles, room decor, newborn gift sets, cleaning products, gluten-free food and beverages, and other categories.

A recent article in Brandweek best described McCarthy’s efforts as a mom:

Jenny became an advocate for a holistic approach to child development after her son Evan was diagnosed with autism in 2005. She has been vocal about such causes as staggering immunizations, adhering to a gluten-free diet and eliminating chemicals in everyday products, such as lead paint in toys or BPA plastic in baby bottles.

McCarthy’s Too Good line is set for launch at mid-tier retailers next spring or summer.

I know many moms have read Jenny’s best selling books on motherhood, so I’m anxious to see these products for myself! I applaud Jenny for using her celebrity status as a platform to create a less toxic environment for all of our kids—and for making it affordable. Be on the look out for Too Good by Jenny.