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  • 16 Must-Have Apps for a Healthy Pregnancy

    Now that you're pregnant, your health is doubly important -- you're taking care of two now. Keep safety rules straight, find ways to de-stress, choose the right foods to eat, learn safe workouts, and more with our favorite apps for a healthy pregnancy.

    By Corinne Garcia

    Foods to Avoid When Pregnant

    Cost: $0.99

    Not the most creative name, but a pretty handy guide to exactly that: foods you may want to avoid. If you're craving a California roll or blue cheese, you can check the app to see whether it falls on the unsafe lists of cheeses, sauces, deli meats, and other edibles you must skip until your baby arrives. In addition, this app gives you guidelines for foods that need to be cooked to proper temperatures and/or pasteurized for prenatal consumption. Foods are broken down into categories (meat and eggs, cheese and dairy, vegetables, etc.) and sub-categories that make it easy to do a quick search on your phone while you're at the grocery store or at a restaurant. Get the app!


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  • Kids abandoned in the park: What would you have done?

    Taking her son to the playground was supposed to be a fun outing, but when Berit Thorkelson spotted two young children playing unsupervised, she was faced with a tough decision.

    By Berit Thorkelson

    We happen to live in a city with lots of parks. Nice parks. We have options, and that's good. We never lack in the twisty-slide department.

    The closest one is our default park. It's four blocks away, and we hit it up at least a few days a week. Sometimes, we're the only ones there, so we have our choice of swings and slides. Other times, it crawls with kids and parents. On those days, Clint usually follows Roy around while I monitor access to Nico, who is a total celebrity around kids, probably because she's small and friendly. As long as I'm by her side, she's cool with her sudden popularity, absorbing gentle pats and dispensing the odd squeal-inciting lick.

    The other night when we showed up, there was just one other parent and three kids, all on the swingset. As usual, Nico grabbed the

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  • What should we call a child with special needs?

    To The MaxBy Ellen Seidman, To the Max

    I think that there's an image problem with special needs. OK, I'm not talking an Anthony Weiner sort of problem. I'm talking about the words.

    "Special needs" just doesn't sound cool, although out of all the terms, I tend to use it a lot because it's the most recognized term. "Differently-abled" is cooler but harder to explain and I don't always want to explain. "Disabled" emphasizes negativity, and "handicapped" just seems outdated to me.

    I know, I know: Why are labels necessary? Sometimes, they just are. I don't always want to say "Max has cerebral palsy"-vague terminology comes in handy for forms, special accommodations at places, nosy people.

    I've had many lively discussions with other parents, and all of us seem to agree there should be a better term. I recently met a mom who describes her child as "freaky-perfect." That one didn't work for me, as I think "freak" has some bad associations. A lot of people in the autism community

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  • Would you donate breastmilk to a milk bank?

    Thanks to social media and growing awareness, milk banks are on the rise. Now, they need more donations to keep up with demand.

    By Kate Silver

    Melissa Viers nursed her third baby, Josiah, just as she'd done with his two older siblings. When Josiah was six months old, Melissa found a lump in her breast. Cancer. Her doctor told her she needed to start chemotherapy treatments. She would also have to stop nursing her baby.

    Melissa, 27, who lives in Creston, Iowa, was devastated. "Obviously, I was very upset that I had cancer, but the biggest thing was having to stop nursing," she says. "I never wanted my kids to have formula if I could help it."

    Through her job as a breastfeeding peer counselor with WIC, a federally funded program that encourages nutrition for women, infants, and children, Melissa had learned about human milk banks. There, donated breast milk is screened, pasteurized, and prescribed for mothers and babies in need. With a prescription from her doctor for

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  • Safe-Sleep Guide for Baby

    A lot has changed with the past generation when it comes to the sleep environment for babies. The once-standard drop-side crib is now banned. The idea of what should -- or should not -- be in a crib is still in flux. Follow this guide to safe sleep for babies to make sure you create the safest possible environment.
    By Mitch Lipka


    The rules and perceptions about crib safety have shifted in the past few years, and with that shift have come new requirements for how cribs must be made. Millions of older cribs remain in people's homes -- cribs that are no longer considered safe. Drop-side cribs, particularly those that are more than a couple of years old, are particularly worrisome because the hardware has a tendency to fail and create gaps that can trap or suffocate a baby.

    Avoid using hand-me-down cribs that have not be subject to the latest safety standards, which are intended to give some assurance the crib will remain sturdy for years. And resist the temptation to give

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  • A Break-the-Rules Guide to the Perfect Baby Name

    Who says you have to choose a name before your child''s birth, or honor his great-grandfather by calling him Irwin? Buck tradition and borrow the techniques that follow--you'll find a just-right title for your tot.

    By Paula Kashtan

    Buzz Your Two Favorite Names in a Blender!

    Landing on a name you absolutely love is definitely cause for a happy dance-unless your husband absolutely loves another name. "You can't live in two different towns, and you can't have two different names, and we all know that getting to choose a child's middle name isn't the same," says Laura Wattenberg, author of The Baby Name Wizard. You could take the "you name this baby, and I'll take the next one" route, but that assumes you'll have more than one child and requires one partner to have a heck of a lot of faith (and patience!).

    "It's tempting to think, 'I'm giving birth to him, so I should get the final say,' but remember that the name is a powerful bridge to bonding with your baby," Wattenberg

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  • 25 Manners Every Kid Should Know By Age 9

    Helping your child master these simple rules of etiquette will get him noticed -- for all the right reasons.
    By David Lowry, Ph.D.

    Your child's rude 'tude isn't always intentional. Sometimes kids just don't realize it's impolite to interrupt, pick their nose, or loudly observe that the lady walking in front of them has a large behind. And in the hustle and bustle of daily life, busy moms and dads don't always have the time to focus on etiquette. But if you reinforce these 25 must-do manners, you'll raise a polite, kind, well-liked child.-

    Manner #1

    When asking for something, say "Please."

    Manner #2

    When receiving something, say "Thank you."

    Related: Kid-Made Thank You Notes

    Manner #3

    Do not interrupt grown-ups who are speaking with each other unless there is an emergency. They will notice you and respond when they are finished talking.

    Manner #4

    If you do need to get somebody's attention right away, the phrase "excuse me" is the most polite way for you to enter the

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  • 10+ Fun & Free Cabin-Fever Busters

    Check out these entertaining ways to beat the winter doldrums today.

    By Rose Kennedy

    1. Don't Let Winter Get You Down

    Thanks a lot, January. The whole family-and it suddenly seems like there are a dozen of you-is stuck indoors, holiday bills are due, you're sporting an extra five pounds, and was that the sound of the water heater getting ready to give up the ghost? But don't say "blahs" yet, not when these quick pick-me-ups can give you a lift in seconds. And don't worry about that battered budget: most all of these ingenious suggestions are free.

    13 Great Indoor Games & Activities

    2. C'mon, Twist and Shout

    One thing Ellen Mahurin, the mom of a 5-year-old daughter and 2-year-old son, can count on in wintertime Yorktown, Virginia, is the cold. And the dark. "Sometimes I get a case of the blahs and I just sit around in our apartment all day watching movies with the kids. It can be enjoyable but come dinnertime and bedtime, the kids still have a lot of pent-up energy,"

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  • 14 Ways to Stay Healthy This Winter

    These secret weapons will help you and the family stay well during the cold, dark months of winter.

    Dorothy Foltz-Gray

    In winter, viruses and bacteria abound like snowflakes. Work and school environments test our immune systems. And exercise likely takes a backseat when icicles are in view. But don't despair. You and your family can hang onto good health in spite of the challenges. Here's how.

    1. Wash Up

    Preempt viruses and bacteria by frequently washing your hands-and teach your kids to do the same, says Maritza Baez, M.D., a family physician in Buffalo, New York. Nothing fancy is required. Simply do this: "Work up a lather and wash for at least 30 seconds before eating and after you go to the bathroom," he says. Wash under your fingernails too. That's where germs lurk.

    Strategies for Keeping Your Family's Hands Clean

    2. Change Your Toothbrush

    "Use a new toothbrush after you've had a cold, the flu, a mouth infection, or sore throat," says dentist Jeff Golub-Evans,

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  • Really Cute Thank-You Notes

    Saying thank you won't be a chore with these fun easy-to-make cards. Even little kids can help!

    By Holly Christian


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