Diana

Image courtesy of Sideshow Collectibles.

I’m a mom now, so I could start this letter by saying how I have three little girls and how it’s so important for girls to see powerful female characters and all that. But even though that’s important, that’s not what I want to say. This letter is from me. 

Growing up I knew about Wonder Woman. I just didn’t really care about Wonder Woman. She was beautiful and awesome, but constantly overshadowed by characters like Batman and Superman. She didn’t really seem to have her own thing going on–if I ever saw her, it was as a member of the Justice League, a pretty chauffeur in an invisible jet. She never saved the day. She wasn’t a crunch player. She wasn’t an MVP. She was a token female and I figured she had to be dating someone or they wouldn’t have let her in. The original live action Wonder Woman from the 1974 film, Lynda Carter, was pretty awesome, but she still didn’t inspire me. She was so dainty. Lynda Carter was unbelievably refined and beautiful, and I had skinned knees and oversized Pokémon t-shirts. Unfortunately, she just seemed like another standard of femaleness that I wouldn’t hit. 

A couple nights ago I went to see the new Wonder Woman film with my husband, and I remember thinking on the way to the theatre that I could have waited to see it on demand. I wasn’t into the idea of a Wonder Woman movie because I didn’t need to see any more watered down sex symbols on the big screen. I had seen the posters and the ads, and Gal Gadot was freaking hot. That wasn’t a good sign. Sure, she looked the part for the Princess of Themyscira, but what hot woman in Hollywood ever gets to play a meaningful role, especially in a superhero movie?

I was blown away. 

Wonder Woman was amazing. Amazing. Amazing. Diana was tough, hard headed, spoiled, compassionate, loving, sarcastic, and completely unimpressed with herself and her own beauty. DC casted a gorgeous woman and left it at that. They let her breathe on the screen and become three-dimensional. The phenomenal (and female) director of this movie, Patty Jenkins, allowed Diana a real experience. She made no apologies (a lesson I need to learn), struggled with her belief in men but never her belief in herself, cooed over babies, had sex on the first date, and set clear boundaries with the men and women around her. Diana was a woman. Honestly, her fighting style was straight up badass, but that wasn’t what made me get all excited and teary-eyed during this film. I loved the fact that Wonder Woman was humble without being self-deprecating, that she apologized when it was appropriate but not constantly, and she did whatever she needed or wanted to do without waiting for permission. 

Thank you, Patty Jenkins and Gal Gadot, for being beautiful, humble, and for doing what you needed to do without waiting for permission. Thank you DC, for allowing Wonder Woman to be the best you’ve ever made, for allowing her to be better than Batman and Superman and the entire Justice League (because this was the best DC superhero movie I’ve ever seen). Thank you to all the Wonder Womans that ran at the glass ceiling before to set the tone for this film to exist. And thank you for allowing her to just be Diana. You have given millions of women permission to just be themselves, too. 

Five Tips to Help You Get Ready For The New Year

Ugh, I can’t. Call me when 2016 is over.

At this point, I don’t know anyone who’s not ready to say goodbye to 2016. This has been a trying year, and everyone I know has been looking ahead to the future with eager anticipation.

I love love love New Year’s—as you already know, I’m super type A, I love making lists, and I almost always keep my resolutions. I’ve written about making resolutions before, so this time I’d thought I’d share what I’m doing to clear the cobwebs out at the end of 2016. Continue reading

Best Gifts to Give A One Year Old

phi-party

On September 10th, my tiny baby turned one year old, and quite frankly, I’m still in shock.  Because she’s not walking yet, I’ve been in denial, but the truth is plain to see—I no longer have a newborn, an infant, or a baby.  I am the parent of a toddler.

I was never really around younger kids growing up (I’m the youngest of my whole family) so I had no idea what in the world to plan for her birthday party, let alone how to answer the well-meaning but totally stupefying question of “what does she want?”  The only thing that she is truly, truly passionate about is food and empty water bottles.  I figured I should probably just ask around to find out “What’s the best gift you can give a one-year-old, and why?” Continue reading

Product Review: The Spoon Cocoon


With every new leap forward in baby’s development, there comes a litany of new things to learn and be responsible for. I thought feeding was one of those things that I didn’t have to worry about anymore. After all, we had gotten breastfeeding down to an art. So imagine my dismay when my pediatrician informed me, with unsubstantiated glee, that we were cleared to start solid foods.

Let me tell you this—if I had my way we would breastfeed forever. One of the things I love about nursing is how easy it is to do on the go. I don’t have to worry about washing bottles or warming food—I can just whip it out and nurse my daughter wherever, whenever.

Thank goodness that there are moms out there that are a step ahead of me, like Cynthia Silver, the founder of Baby in Tow. They make an awesome little product called the Spoon Cocoon, which appeals generously to my convenience-driven, germaphobic nature.  Continue reading

The Black Abyss: Being Not-Black-Enough In Angry America

Not black enough, but definitely not white, either.
I am African-American, Dominican, and Cherokee.  I grew up in a home where there was a lot of love, and my family brought in enough money to pay the bills, but we were paycheck-to-paycheck anyway.  When I went to public school, my class was predominantly black.  To them, the Dominican boy was Dominican.  The Polish boy was Polish.  Both of them were lighter than me, but to my class, I was white.

At eleven years old, I received a scholarship for minority students and was accepted into a prestigious private school.  I was surrounded by white people and I was definitely not one of them.  I thought the two Chinese, one Puerto Rican and two other black students that were accepted at the same time as I was would have my back, but they drifted into their cliques and I was alone.  And light-skinned. Continue reading

Carriers, Strollers, and Wraps—Oh My! The 2016 New York Baby Show

Jamie Grayson, the Baby Gear Guy, gives the keynote address to a packed room.  Photo courtesy of MomTrends.
Jamie Grayson, the Baby Gear Guy, gives the keynote address to a packed room. Photo courtesy of MomTrends.

Last weekend, Pier 92 played host to thousands of new and expectant parents at the 2016 New York Baby Show. From strollers that fold down to the size of a laptop to a sleep monitor that clips right onto baby’s clothes, every possible product that a new parent could need was available to check out, sample and in some cases, take home that day. 

With so many options, it was nearly impossible to stop at every booth on the showroom floor, so I made sure to hit the biggest must-haves on our list. Phoenix just turned eight months old, which means that we’re about to give up our amazing infant car seat. So travel gear was a priority for us at this event, and these were by far our favorites:
 

The GB Pockit stroller. Photo courtesy of BabyGizmo.com.
The GB Pockit stroller. Photo courtesy of BabyGizmo.com.
 GB Pockit Stroller: Recently entered into the Guinness Book of World Records for being the smallest stroller ever, this lightweight lifesaver folds down small enough to fit into a tote bag and weighs only eleven pounds. Despite its small size, it has really durable wheels and a super sturdy frame. It’s a perfect second stroller and great for city life.    

Phoenix and I rocking a Pavo woven wrap. Photo courtesy of Kanji Photography.  babydroppings.com
Phoenix and I rocking a Pavo woven wrap. Photo courtesy of Kanji Photography.
   
An up-close shot of the Gotham print. Photo by babydroppings.com.
An up-close shot of the Gotham print. Photo by babydroppings.com.
 Pavo Gotham Wrap: My husband and I are avid babywearers, and since my daughter was born we’ve been rocking a stretchy wrap as our primary carrier. Well, the Pavo completely knocked our socks off. This woven wrap is made of amazingly high-quality fabric that is breathable enough for warm weather, while literally being strong enough to carry my eight month old, a toddler, or even two babies. It can be tied in dozens of different ways, and unlike our stretchy wrap, supports front, back or hip carrying. Plus, it’s just absolutely beautiful. 

 

Seimone, one of our MomTrends/New York Baby Show ticket giveaway winners, and her daughter, Ashley, trying on the new Baby Björn One carrier.  babydroppings.com
Seimone, one of our MomTrends/New York Baby Show ticket giveaway winners, and her daughter, Ashley, trying on the new Baby Björn One carrier.
 Baby Björn One: What can I say? We love our baby carriers. There are definitely times when I need a quick solution, and as much as I love wraps they do take some maneuvering. The Baby Björn is a classic soft-structured carrier that probably everyone has seen or heard of, but the new One carrier has been designed with several nifty features. Borrowing a page from wraps, it has improved knee-to-knee support, and supports a front or back carry. While it’s insanely comfortable, my favorite thing about it is that it’s infinitely adjustable. The ease of raising or lowering baby makes nursing while carrying super simple, and getting hit on and off is actually a snap (or three). 

There were dozens of other fantastic brands and cool baby gadgets, but these three were our absolute favorites. Now that you have the babydroppings Best in Show picks, tell us—which were your favorite products from the New York Baby Show, and what did you want to see more of?

The New Tommee Tippee Ultra Bottle

 Tommee Tippee Ultra provides the ultimate feeding experience.  
Last Thursday saw the release of the new Tommee Tippee Ultra, a bottle designed to be the only baby bottle parents will ever need. Engineered to be a perfect match for babies with latch issues, colic or who just prefer a breast, the Ultra bottle, as its name implies, seeks to provide the “ultimate feeding experience.”I have to admit, I thought bottles were bottles. That is, until I got pregnant and started putting my registry together. I was warned not to stock up on bottles, nipples or even pacifiers, because babies are notoriously picky about their feeding gear. I was told that’s doubly true for breastfed babies. 

Well, they were right. I lucked out and had a bottle at home that my baby was willing to take, but that was not always a guarantee. I realized quickly that if I was anywhere in sight, bottles weren’t happening. So I turned over bottle feeding to my husband. Then one day, while I was out, he called me to ask me to come home right away, because the baby was refusing to take a bottle at all. 

The Ultra bottle by Tommee Tippee is built with breastfeeding in mind, with its nipple capable of moving in multiple directions (not a trait that I realized my nipple has, but now that I’m considering it is surprisingly important). Although the nipple itself is a super soft silicone, it doesn’t collapse on itself like some bottles do. The nipple is also slightly angled, keeping it full of milk and reducing baby’s air intake (a must for colicky babies).

 Tommee Tippee Ultra provides the ultimate feeding experience.  
I also like the shape of the bottle, although the wider body does take a bit of getting used to if you generally handle a smaller bottle. The large surface area makes it possible for baby to hold the bottle on her own, which is always super cute!

If I had to choose just one bottle, especially for a nursing baby, this is probably your safest bet. Plus, the nipples are compatible with all other Tommee Tippee nipples, making it possible to swap for a faster flow as baby grows. Right now, the Tommee Tippee Ultra Bottle is available exclusively at Babies”R”Us. 

 Tommee Tippee Ultra provides the ultimate feeding experience.   
Tommee Tippee Ultra provides the ultimate feeding experience.  The release party, which was at Vosges Haut-Chocolat in SoHo (yum!) also featured some of the lines other new baby essentials, like their famous pacifiers, their diaper pail, and a super cool pump-and-store system. I would suggest that every baby company take a page out of Tommee Tippee’s book—shopping for baby goods should always be paired with chocolate and wine!

 Tommee Tippee Ultra provides the ultimate feeding experience.  
Which Tommee Tippee product is your baby must-have?

GIVEAWAY! New York Baby Show 2016

Win tickets to the 2016 New York Baby Show!

If you’re a expecting parent, you’re probably experiencing the extreme and abject terror that comes with preparing for a new baby. On one hand, you absolutely cannot wait for your little bundle to arrive. On the other hand, you hope they stay in there forever, because you haven’t got a clue what to do with them.

You’re not alone. Join thousands of new and expectant parents at the New York Baby Show, the tri-state area’s biggest baby event of the year. Here, you can strut the aisles in style, asking all your questions and scoring some pretty cool goodies, too.

The event is planned and hosted with parents in mind, so while there’s plenty of entertainment for the little ones, moms and dads have their own separate lounge areas too. There are spaces for feeding and changing, and even a cafe. In addition to the nearly 200 pregnancy, baby, toddler and family brands that will be in attendance, you and your baby can sign up for classes together. The New York Baby Show also boasts a stroller test track, where you can test out the top most road–err, sidewalk-worthy contenders.

Being a new mom myself, I love any chance to hear from other parents and try out some baby gear, and I’m totally committed to helping you get through parenthood with a bit of sanity and a lot of humor. That’s why babydroppings is giving away TEN tickets to the New York Baby Show, courtesy of MomTrends!  Plus, get 25% off any ticket with the code BabyDroppings25!

Click here to enter, and don’t forget to comment: why do YOU want to go to the New York Baby Show?

Pregnancy after Recurrent Miscarriage

Beautiful thoughts on pregnancy after loss.

The Happy Baby Project

Yes, the clue is in the title. The Happy Baby Project is 26 weeks pregnant!

So are the (sparkling elderflower) corks popping and the trumpets blowing? Well, no, sadly. And that is what I wanted to write about today, for all those women pregnant after suffering from recurrent miscarriage, and their friends and family who may not understand.

Pregnancy after recurrent miscarriage is a very different kettle of fish to my first pregnancy with my son, before any of this miscarriage journey had begun.

Then I was full of joy and confidence. We announced early, we posted our scan photo on Facebook with cheeky comment, we marched into scan rooms smiling and shouting “don’t tell us the sex!” as if that was the only worry we could possibly have. I bought baby stuff early, talked about it incessantly. In short, the world revolved around me and my growing baby. I was in…

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Well Rounded NY Presents “Tips By Trimester”

Standing room only at Seraphine Maternity Soho.
Last week, Well Rounded NY, a lifestyle site dedicated to helping New York City moms navigate pregnancy and parenthood, teamed up with Seraphine Maternity Soho to host “Tips By Trimester.” The pregnancy prep talk was designed to help expecting parents get familiar with the wide variety of resources and brands that are available to parents, and offer useful, immediately relevant advice in a fun and engaging way. Continue reading