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  • Spilling The Beans - Insider's Guide to Baby Gear - Magic Beans

Pretty in Pink

The Maclaren Volo has been a bit hard to come by these days. This best-selling entry-level Maclaren is a popular model, thanks to its featherweight size, its sharp styling and its outstanding handling. Last December, Maclaren had plenty of Volos – too many, actually. This year I guess they overcompensated, so we haven’t received Volos since the end of the ... Read More »

Fun for each night

Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of lights, is celebrated each December, right around the same time as Christmas. Coincidentally, there is a tradition of giving gifts on each of the holiday’s eight nights, although this tradition almost certainly came about from a desire to keep children from feeling left out during the Christmas season. In fact, the real tradition is to ... Read More »

Radian Car Seat Debuts

We’ve just received our first shipment of the new Radian car seat, a convertible seat designed for children from 5-65 lbs. and up to 49″. There are many good reasons to be wary of a brand new car seat design, and I spent a lot of time with this seat before I agreed to carry it. But I really liked ... Read More »

A magical DVD concept

Philosophically, many parents differ when it comes to babies and TV. I have friends on both sides of the issue, and I’ve always taken a middle-of-the-road stance myself. When I was a stay-at-home mom, having a half-hour to check my e-mail, cook dinner or read a magazine was a wonderful luxury, and if Baby Einstein could facilitate that, great. But ... Read More »

Weighing in…

One of the greatest sources of anxiety for any new mother is her baby’s weight gain. Anyone who has been through it can attest to that. I always found it amazing how personally invested I was in fattening up my kids. When my baby gained weight, I was flooded with joy and an acute sense of accomplishment, and when she ... Read More »

But what do kids really want?

In this week’s New York Times Style Magazine, Patricia Marx interviewed a number of children and asked what they want for Christmas or Hanukkah. The answers ranged from the predictable to the hilarious. If you have a chance, check it out. Read More »

Balancing Act

I don’t think I need to say much about this item. The first time I saw a picture of the Labyrinth Balance Board in a catalog, I got pretty excited about it. It took me a while to track it down, and finally, as it turned out, the company that makes it, Challenge & Fun, is actually located in Massachusetts. ... Read More »

Trick out your diaper bag

When disposable diapers come out of their packaging, they are lovely – smooth, clean and so flat. But after a day or two knocking around in your diaper bag they undergo an unpleasant transformation into fuzzy, puffy, wrinkled wads. It’s just inevitable, and it never seems to matter which appropriately-sized pocket you use to store them. So a smart mom ... Read More »

Are you game?

Although video games have become enormously popular with kids (an understatement, I know), board games are still a strong category, especially among families looking for quality together-time activities. Testament to this is the games section at Toy Fair each year, with several aisles teeming with passionate, small companies often hawking a single product. Even on a professional level, it’s relatively ... Read More »

Buff, baby

I’m not ashamed to admit that I am a fan of “Survivor” (there are millions of us out there – just not anyone I know). If you’ve never seen it, all you need to know is this: contestants are given color-coded Buffs to identify which tribe they are on. I’d never heard of a Buff until I started watching Survivor, ... Read More »