Mommying BabyT

Mommy T's adventures; bringing up Baby T

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Cloth Diapers 101 – Types

Hey there! I know I’ve kept you waiting a long time since my last post on #ClothDiapers. Well, life and Mommying happened as they say. Have you ever noticed how just as you plan to do something major on your blog or in your personal sphere, things are thrown out of gear by a new baby growth spurt or teething or just general mood off? Well, that’s what happened here too. But we have kind of defeated that and here I am to talk about Cloth Diapers.

There are many kinds of people. Book people. Coffee People. Horror Movie people.

And then there are Cloth Diaper kind of people. Even within that, there are the pre-folds people, flats people, pockets people and whatever suits them kind of diaper type of people. There are also people who want to try it all (Me!). Bottomline is that cloth diapers are not a one size fits all solution. A lot depends on the individual’s comfort and convenience and baby’s needs too. But let’s make an attempt here to simplify it and tell you, realistically, about the kinds of cloth diapers that you will most likely use and want to have in your stash. So here goes…

This post shows you the various types of cloth diapers out there –
  1. Flats
  2. Prefolds
  3. Pocket Diapers
  4. Cover Diapers
  5. All-in-one Diapers

flats, flat diapers, flat nappies, square cloth, nappies, nappy cloth, modern cloth diapers, advanced cloth diapers, superbottoms, cloth diapering india, cloth diapers india, cloth diaper shopsFlat diapers come close to the traditional nappies we were diapered in. They are square pieces of cloth that can be folded in various ways to hold baby pee/poo. They most usually need pins and other fasteners like a Snappi or Boingo to hold them in place.

Most commonly available as Flour Sack Towels (FSTs), birdseye cotton, muslin, Terry. (In order of pic above, starting with the bottom printed cloth)

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Various ways of using flat diapers

Pros:
  • Economical
  • Endless possibilities: use them folded/ shaped in various ways to customize absorbency for girl or boy babies
  • Easy to use – simply pad fold to give multi-layers. Easy to clean too.
  • Dry very fast as they are thin & can be opened up
  • Can be made out of any absorbent cloth, even old clothes/ bed sheets/ towels from around the house.
  • Can be put to various uses around the house once you are done diapering.
Cons:
  • Can be a hassle to use – folding them can be a pain during emergencies
  • Low absorbency when used on its own – won’t last more than an hour or so if used on its own.
  • Not waterproof – will need the addition of a waterproof cover
  • Baby will feel the wetness – these don’t give a stay dry feel.
  • You will need a ton of these.

The best way to use these:

By far the simplest and easiest way to use a flat diaper is to pad fold it and use with a waterproof cover like a cover diaper or a pocket diaper. You can also combine multiple flats to add absorbency.

My Brand Recommendation: 

  • TinyCare Muslin Flats (come in various sizes).
  • Mothercare Muslin Cloth.

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Prefolds are multi layered, stitched rectangular pieces. They are stitched such that the centre panel has more layers of absorbency than the sides.

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Like flats, pre-folds also can be used in various ways. They can be wrapped around the baby like a traditional nappy and held in place with a fastener or simply pad folded.

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Pros:
  • Usually made of very absorbent, natural fabrics like organic cotton, hemp, bamboo. This makes them hold a lot of liquid.
  • Makes for an economical method of diapering.
  • The pre-folds can be put to multiple uses once you are done diapering.
  • Can be used for day or even night-time diapering.
Cons:
  • Usually require a lot of pre-use prepping to bring them up to full absorbency.
  • Shrink upon prepping
  • Need fasteners to hold them in place
  • Not waterproof – will need the addition of a waterproof cover
  • Baby will feel the wetness – these don’t give a stay dry feel.

The best way to use these:

By far the simplest and easiest way to use a pre-fold diaper is to pad fold it and use with a waterproof cover like a cover diaper or a pocket diaper.

My Brand Recommendation: 

  • OsoCozy Organic Unbleached Cotton Prefolds

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Pocket diapers are by far the most popular type of cloth diapers used in the world. It consists of a waterproof shell and a stay-dry fabric lined inner. It has a pocket like opening on one side or both and allows you to stuff an insert of soaker pad inside. The most commonly used insert in a pocket diaper is micro fibre which is a synthetic fabric. However, inserts can be made of various materials – natural fabrics like bamboo cotton, hemp, organic cotton or synthetic like charcoal bamboo, bamboo rayon etc. They all have their own set of pros and cons and it greatly depends on the care giver’s preference as much as it does on baby’s comfort.

Pocket Diapers also give the user the freedom to actually use anything inside the pocket. You can use ready to use inserts or any other material pad folded to fit into the pocket. You can even add multiple inserts inside the pocket so as to make it last longer. When its time to change the diaper you have to replace the entire system – insert and diaper shell.

When it’s time to change the diaper you have to replace the entire system – insert and diaper shell. Thus a pocket diaper lasts only for 2 hours on average with the regular stuffing. Addition of a booster may increase its holding capacity.

Pros:
  • Versatile – can be used with a variety of inserts stuffed into the pocket. The essence of the pocket diaper is the stay dry inner layer and so anything that you use inside the pocket is fine. Baby will get a stay dry feel.
  • The pocket diaper itself does not require any prep. One wash and you are good to use.
  • Dries fast after wash even in the Indian monsoon
  • Value for money – usually the most affordable amongst all the diapers available

Cons:

  • Cannot be reused. Have to change the entire diapering system if soiled or full
  • Can sometimes seem bulky, especially if you are stuffing multiple inserts inside it.
  • Can sometimes be a hassle when you have a fidgety baby on hand and you need to stuff the diaper with the insert. A good idea to counter this is to keep the insert stuffed into the pocket while storing.

The best way to use these:

Stuff the insert inside the pocket and store them until use. This will save time.  You can also add a trim natural fibre booster inside the pocket in addition to a regular insert in order to increase the time the pocket will last for.

My Brand Recommendation: 

  • Superbottoms Pocket Diapers

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After having cloth diapered for a 1.5 years and using virtually all types and the most advanced types of cloth diapers I am drawn back to the simplest of all – cover style cloth diapers.

Cover Diapers essentially refers to the water proof shell only. But they provide a great deal of versatility in terms of what you can use inside the covers. Pictured above are a few of the options – Pre-folds, Terry cloth shaped into a nappy, pad folded flats, or special inserts meant for cover diapers. Cover diaper inserts need to be customized to have a stay dry layer on top, especially in the case of microfibre or natural fabric inserts.  These materials are not meant to be used next to baby’s skin (MF) or don’t have an inherent stay dry quality.

I love the Cover diaper and Soaker system from Superbottoms The soakers have a special feature which means they can be snapped into the shell to keep them in place. The material is high-quality microfibre which usually lasts me around 3 to 4 hours on its own.

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Superbottoms Cover Diapers – newborn & regular sized.

The best part about a cover diapering system is that you can simply replace the soaker/insert once full, wipe down or air dry the shell (unless soiled with poop) and add another fresh soaker. Basically, you get to reuse the shell (cover) over and over until it needs a wash. This makes it a very economical cloth diapering system.

Pros:
  • Versatile – can use anything inside the covers, specific cover diaper inserts or home made nappies.
  • Gives multi-uses as the cover can be reused by replacing the soaker/ insert
  • Dries in a jiffy even after a full wash cycle.
  • You will need only a few sets of the cover diapers and can just keep buying the inserts, if you intend to diaper using this system.
Cons:
  • You need special inserts if you prefer to give baby a stay dry feel. (But mostly they come with the cover diapering system.)
  • Using cloth diaper inserts inside a cover can lead to bunching, shifts and leaks as not all inserts have snaps to hold them in place.

The best way to use these:

Use soakers with snaps which will help keep them in place inside the cover. While replacing the soaker, wipe it down with a cloth dampened in hot water and air dry it for a while, before reusing it.

My Brand Recommendation: 

  • Superbottoms Cover Diaper & stay dry soakers

The All-in-one diaper is the one that comes closest to a disposable diaper, in the sense that it can be just fastened onto baby without the need to add any other inserts/ soakers. It usually also lasts much longer than most diapers.

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All-in-ones as the name suggest contain all the diapering parts – waterproof shell and absorbent insert built into the cloth diapers system. You just put the entire diaper on and are good to go.  As such they are convenient and less hassle. Most All-in-one type diapers are made of very absorbent materials and so will last for a much longer duration. This makes them a favourite for night time diapering. You can also add more absorbency to these diapers to increase their hold time.

There are various types of All-in-one diapers. But these are the most common:

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Left: The absorbent part is stitched into the inner shell of the diaper. (TotsBots)

Centre: Flap style inserts (Superbottoms Plus)

Right: Snake style insert which can be folded as per your preference.  (Smart Bottoms 3.1 )

All-in-one diapers are a big favourite with people who prefer less complicated diapering. It is a wear and go kind of system. This also makes it easy to be carried on vacations or while out of the house.

Pros:

  • Simple and easy to use.
  • Usually have great capacity so can be used for longer durations. This makes them great for baby naps, local travels or even vacations
  • Less number of spare parts – great when travelling out of home.

Cons:

  • More absorbent also means thicker and so these diapers tend to be a little bulky
  • They also take more time to dry
  • Tend to be expensive
  • Some All-in-one diapers still need you to add extra absorbency.

The best way to use these:

Buy All-in-one diapers which are trim and promise to hold long hours. This way you can get away without adding any additional boosters/ inserts.

My Brand Recommendation: 


The Hybrid or All-in-Two diapering system gives the user a little more freedom with its usage.

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Typically a hybrid or AI2 diapering system consists of a waterproof cloth diaper shell or cover and an insert for the absorbency. The cloth diaperer has the option of using either the special snap on reusable cloth inserts that are designed for the shell or disposable, biodegradable inserts. One can actually even get away with using other insert types like flats, pre-folds etc within the shell.

Technically any cover diaper/ shell + customized insert diapering system also works under the same principle as a hybrid/ AI2. You can use any insert within the shell – customised reusable, own inserts or even disposable inserts.

Pros:

  • Gives greater flexibility to the user.
  • Is convenient especially when traveling out of the house – the insert can be discarded if using a disposable one.

Cons:

  • The shell usually has a mesh or suede inner which can get messy to clean when soiled
  • The shell is not reusable unlike a cover diaper (which comes close to the shell + customised insert/ soaker system)
  • Some shells offer the use of only the specific inserts which can be snapped on. One cannot use any other inserts with the system.

The best way to use these:

They are great for travels when you have no access to a wash and clean facility. You can simply dump the insert without feeling too guilty for harming the environment.

My Brand Recommendation: 

  • Grovia Hybrid diapers

Have you entered the big, beautiful world of cloth diapers? Which type of cloth diapers did you start with and what are your favourite types? What is the one element of cloth diapers that you struggle with?

The Green Snack Co. – Healthy snacking made yumm!

BabyT is a foodie just like his parents. He loves his broccoli, Brussel sprouts, black olives, and Kiwi fruit. Yes, you are reading it right. Of course, I am fervently praying that his taste buds stay this way and he isn’t swayed by the junk food brigade that will smack him in the face once he is out in the real world.  I am no healthy eater myself. But after babyT’s arrival, I try to consciously incorporate healthy options in all that we put into our mouths – meals or snacks.

Snacking is such an important aspect of food intake. While most people equate snacking with an opportunity to binge on the quickly satisfying but not so healthy foods, there are others who utilize snacking to build up on their daily 5 a day’s. Snacking can be healthy – snacking fills an important gap between meals and as such keeps your metabolism going. And this is just as important for babies and young children who are watching your every move. You are inculcating healthy eating habits after all.

Add to this the fact that I am still breastfeeding,I get ravenously hungry between lunch and dinner time. I  mean I can only eat so many fruits in a day. I don’t always have dry snacks around the pantry like murmura or makhanas. At such times I will admit I have popped open the packet of Farsan or store bought glucose biscuits (not proud of it.) and even indulged in a pot of instant noodles. I feel guilty because I know babyT is watching me and also because what I eat passes to him too. I would have really loved to have a ready to eat food which is not only healthy but also yummy on the palate.

Sometimes when I send a wish out into the universe, it comes true and here came knocking at my door a bag full of surprises from The Green Snack Co. 

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Goodies from the Green Snack Co.

I got the Quinoa Puffs in two flavours  – Zesty Kale and Saucy Salsa and the Kale Crisps in Sea Salt & Vinegar & Thai Sweet Chilli flavour.

They are available in these flavours too –

  • Kale crisps – Cheese & Onion
  • Quinoa Puffs – Peppy Cheese

The Green Snack Co.’s Kale Crisps are made of a unique process of dehydration which preserves the nutritional value of the leaves. Kale in itself is a super food, rich in B-vitamins, iron, calcium, fibre and protein. The flavourings added to the leaves are all natural and contain no preservatives. Kale Crisps are priced at Rs. 200 for a 30 gm pack and are available in 3 flavours.

The Green Snack Co.’s Quinoa Puffs are made up of 6 grains namely

  • Quinoa,
  • Amaranth,
  • Ragi,
  • Soy,
  • Rice &
  • Maize

These are roasted. Together they are a good source of fibre, protein, and minerals along with vitamin B and antioxidants.  Quinoa Puffs are priced at Rs. 80 for a 50 gms pack and are available in 3 flavours.

Verdict: A big thumbs up from #babyT and me. I did not expect him to love these snacks. But he did. Yes, even the Kale. Should I jump for joy about my super healthy baby? Well not really, because it means I will have to share. 🙂 I have developed a great fondness for the Zesty Kale flavoured Quinoa Puffs. In fact, I am munching on them right now. The Kale is nice too. Kale is an acquired taste for many people. Here in our household, we did manage to finish the pack in one go. BabyT and I even fought for the crumbs. WIN!!!

You can buy these products from stores like Nature’s Basket and HyperCity. They are also available online from Amazon.

 

Have you tried the Green Snack Co. products yet? If not then you must try them for sure. And don’t just take my word for it… scoot over to my dear friend and fellow mom blogger Shalu Sharma Rathod’s blog  at The Dreamer Mum to see what she has to say about The Green Snack Co.’s products.

Plowns & Inclusive India – a vision for a better India

Do you remember the first time your child scribbled or drew something on paper? Have you saved that piece of paper like a great treasure? I am a very “sentimotional” person (that’s double the dose of sentimental and emotional.) I too had big plans of treasuring all the little creations by babyT. But mommying is hard and down the line, I just could not keep track of those pieces of paper. I tried taking pictures of them, but they were all over the place in my phone’s picture gallery. I then heard of Plowns – an online platform for parents ( and children) to share their creative works in picture format.

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The Plowns tool works via an app on Android. Once you have registered, you can upload your child’s art or essays in picture format under various categories such as Paintings/ Drawings, Craft Works, Writings, Achievements and more. These pictures can be viewed by any other Plowns user and they can also “Star” them to show that they like it or leave a comment on the image. You can also share the images with your friends and family. It’s like a social media tool exclusively to showcase your child’s creative works. How cool is that?

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What makes Plowns special is also their association with the Inclusive India initiative.  The Inclusive India initiative has been launched by the current Government of India to include differently abled people in the fields of education, employment and wider society. Launched in June 2017, the “initiative is an attempt to facilitate the realization of equal opportunities, protection of rights and full participation of individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities into the fabric of society. ”  (ET: June 7, 2017)

The long term goal of such an initiative is that we will have a society where people with “Intellectual Disabilities and their families are valued and can participate equally and all persons with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (PwIDDs) can live an independent and dignified life with equal participation in all activities of the society.”

With this view in mind the Inclusive India initiative has these 3 pillars as its foundation:

  1. Inclusive Education
  2. Inclusive Employment
  3. Inclusive Community Life

What does Plowns do for the #InclusiveIndia initiative? 

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For starters, Plowns has been the web partner to the Inclusive India team and has helped set up their online presence.  Plowns also is an initiative partner. Via their app, they organize monthly art competitions for all their subscribers. The topics are wide and give ample opportunities to the children to showcase their talents. The idea is to include all children irrespective of their physical and mental abilities. 

A positive step has been taken by the government with the Inclusive India initiative. Slowly and surely with the help of businesses and organizations like Plowns, a change will come about in our society where people of all skills, abilities, and gifts will come together and work as one.

Cloth Diapers – what’s all the fuss about!

If you have been following my blog or my accounts on social media you would know that I am a die hard fan of cloth diapers.  I discovered the concept of cloth diapers when I was pregnant. My first thoughts were that they were like nappies or langots as they are called in India. I imagined them to be fancily designed langots and laughed at all the women going nuts about them. Like really?

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Until I discovered what cloth diapers were really all about. And then I became one of those moms who was going all ga-ga about them. I then spent the last two months of my pregnancy reading up all I could about cloth diapers, the materials, how they worked, the wash and care routines, sizes, types.  I was intrigued by how the basic concepts like multi-layering of fabric, and material with wicking properties were being used to build effective tools to hold bodily extracts – read: baby pee & poop.  I was sold, hook, line, and sinker for cloth diapers.

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I have written several posts about cloth diapers on my blog.

If you want to understand what is a cloth diaper and how they work, read my post on My First Cloth Diaper.

Cloth Diapers are essentially diapers made of cloth, and as such safe from harmful chemicals, fragrances and plastic/ paper. Like disposable diapers, they are totally waterproof and leakproof. They have great capacity – can use cloth diapers overnight too. However unlike sposies (as disposable diapers are known) cloth diapers are washable and hence reusable over and over again. That one diaper will last you till potty training is done.

However, I felt that they lacked structure and somewhere I skipped the basics. So all this month I am going to be talking about cloth diapers and sharing information and my expertise. Topics for the blogs will range from a basic 101 guide to cloth diapers and then help you build your stash. I also want to talk about a very common problem that most people face with cloth diapers and that is getting the perfect fit and sizing. Lastly, I do see a lot of new parents and caregivers adopting cloth diapering but shying away from using cloth diapers at night or when out of the house. I want to give very simple and doable solutions to this category. While I respect everyone’s individual choice to follow something as per their convenience and comfort, I really want to urge them to at least try and then decide if it would suit them or not.

So stay tuned all of this month. Is there any specific topic you would like me to cover about cloth diapering? Let me know in the comments here.

MomsCo – Pamper time for Moms

Raise your hand if the moment you discovered you were pregnant you decided that you would do everything possible to care for and protect the little bean slowly growing inside you. And now raise your other hand if you suddenly found that none of the bath and body products you were using felt safe or natural to be used during pregnancy. Hey you look a little silly with both your hands up. You can relax and let me tell you about these wonderful company which makes great products. Its called The MomsCo and its one of the first Indian companies which makes bath and body products for Moms to be and new moms.

Why is it important to use safe products on your body? 

It is not just what you put inside your body but also what you put outside it that matters. Many seemingly innocent products contain ingredients which can seep in through skin and the air we breathe. Some of these when exposed to in large enough quantities can pose a risk to the foetus. In extreme cases, some may cause severe birth and mental defects to the baby.

Nature In, Toxins Out 

The MomsCo promise is Nature In, Toxins Out. They bring you India’s first all-natural, toxin free range of pregnancy care products. They say that there is no power greater than a moms who wishes to do the best for her child. And a similar story lies at the heart of The MomsCo. Born out of a mother’s need to give only the best to her babies,  the team at The Moms Co., worked hard to help moms-to-be and new moms make safe, natural, effective choices for themselves and their families.

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Source: TheMomsCo.com

They followed a rigorous process of selection of natural ingredients to meet safety standards across the globe. Further they validated & tested their ingredients against several toxicity databases to ensure 100% safety.

All in all, Malika & Mohit Sadani the parents behind The MomsCo, bring us products that are safe, natural and toxin free. All The MomsCo products are free from toxins such as Mineral Oils, Parabens, Sulphates, SLS/SLEs, Phenoxyethanol, synthetic fragrances and more.

My first brush with The MomsCo products was when they contacted me to use and review their products. I received the sampler set of body wash and body butter.

Once you are a #mother, you tend to forget you exist. Life revolves entirely around baby and mommy's well being takes a back seat. #momhair and "30 second showers" (if you're lucky – daily) take over the scene. 😿🙅🤦 . . Until one day when the team from @themomsco called to talk about their products for pregnant & new moms. Finally someone who was thinking of us moms too. 🤰👰💁👸 . . Pic 1 – The products came in this #ecofriendly ♻ cardboard box which has since been used to store babyT's stones 🎱 (don't ask!😣😅) Inside the box was this cute little drawstring jute bag (pic 2) which contained the body wash & body butter (pic 3) . . . So they sent me a sampler set of products . .☝️) Natural Body Wash & . .✌) Natural Body Butter. . . . 💆The Natural Body Wash – is a toxin-free combination of coconut based mild cleansers & natural moisturizers that help skin restore its natural balance & essential oils that help with morning sickness. I love the ginger & orange fragrance it has. The first few washes did leave my skin a tad bit dry, but then I do shower with hot water which tends to dry the skin. 🛀🛁🚿 . . 💆Natural Body Butter – contains shea & cocoa butter, seabuckthorn oil for skin regeneration & vitamin C rich rosehip oil. It smooths in to the skin effortlessly, leaving it supple without being heavy. The tiny sampler has now become a constant companion in my handbag. 😉 . . What's also good to note is that all #TheMomsCo products are without Mineral Oil, Sulphates (SLS, SLES), Parabens, DEA/TEA, Phenoxyethanol, Synthetic Fragrances, PEGs & many other potentially harmful chemicals. They are certified Toxin Free and Made Safe by Safe Cosmetics Australia. ❌☠☡❌ . . You can order a set of free samplers for yourself to test the products out first and see if they suit you. Sounds really great right? . . #mommyingbabyT #mommyTsTips #productreview #freesamplers #newkidsontheblock #momproducts #bodywash #bodybutter #toxinfree #safeandnatural #naturalmama #naturalproducts #earthfriendly #mombloggerindia #momlife #childhoodunplugged #indianmoms #indianparents #parenting101 #naturalparenting #mumbaimom #indianmomblogger #mommyblogger #mumbaimoms #mumbaiinstagrammers

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I fell in love with the products. Very soon I received the bigger retail pack of Natural Body Wash, Body Butter and Foot Cream to review. I have now used the products extensively over a month and reviewing them basis this experience.

Natural Body Wash

The MomsCo, Body wash, body butter, foot cream, natural products, products during pregnancy, safe, natural, toxin free, pregnancy products india, pregnancy india, pregnancy mumbai, lactation products, nausea during pregnancy, ginger essential oilThe MomsCo Body Wash contains coconut based mild cleansers and natural moisturizers. Together they help your skin restore its natural balance. The USP of this product is that it contains essential oils of ginger & orange. Ginger helps combat morning sickness – that much hated monster that rears its ugly head during pregnancy. I have also used ginger whenever I had nausea during my monthly migraine episodes. Orange essential oils gives us a pleasant & refreshing aroma to this body wash. This Body Wash also has naturally occuring pro-vitamin B5 which provides  the moisturizing effect.

I love the Body Wash. I actually look forward to bath times now that I have the MomsCo body wash. It is truly refreshing and energizing. And I love that the smell lingers on for some time after the bath too.

The Natural Body Wash is priced at Rs. 348 for a 200 ml bottle. Total value for money. 

My rating for The MomsCo’s Natural Body Wash – 5/5 I highly do recommend this one. 

Natural Body Butter

The MomsCo, Body wash, body butter, foot cream, natural products, products during pregnancy, safe, natural, toxin free, pregnancy products india, pregnancy india, pregnancy mumbai, lactation products, body lotion pregnancy, body butter, safe body lotion, products safe during pregnancyThe MomsCo Natural Body Butter contains cocoa and shea butter. It also has Seabuckthorn oil which is renowned for improving skin elasticity & regeneration. Other ingredients in this are Vitamin E and Vitamin C both of which are great for skin regeneration. This makes this Body Butter great for the pregnant body’s expanding girth. Dry skin on the tummy was something I experienced a lot during my pregnancy. I am sure this product would have been great then.

I use the Body Butter immediately after my shower with the Natural Body Wash. This way it holds all the moisture in and keeps skin soft and supple throughout the day. It is thick and only a small quantity is enough to spread onto the entire hands or legs. The butter is really thick and I am sure works great for people with dry skin. However I have pretty oily skin and don’t have the need for such a rich moisturiser right now post pregnancy.

The Body Butter is of course safe and toxin free, so you can safely use it even when you are breastfeeding.

The Natural Body Butter is priced at Rs. 699 for a 200 gms tub.

My rating for this product is 4/5.  

Natural Foot Cream 

The MomsCo, Body wash, body butter, foot cream, natural products, products during pregnancy, safe, natural, toxin free, pregnancy products india, pregnancy india, pregnancy mumbai, lactation products, nausea during pregnancy, ginger essential oil, foot cream, pregnancy foot care, aching ankles, ankles, feetIt made me really happy to know that the MomsCo has a foot cream. My pain point during pregnancy were my achy, tired feet. And I would look forward to foot massages. Sadly I had no safe products to use. This product then is like manna from heaven for pregnant women.

The MomsCo calls this product a ‘cooling’ foot cream. This can be attributed to the essential oils of peppermint which it contains. It has a nice tingly feel to it when applied. Shea butter in the cream helps to moisturize those sore and tired ankles and feet. It also contains Argan, Sweet Almond and Extra Virgin Olive Oils which hydrate and nourish the otherwise tough skin on the feet. Some other foot creams I have tried in the past leave skin sticky and slippery once shoes are worn. I really liked that the MomsCo foot cream did not do this.

This product is great not just for pregnant women or new moms but for anyone in the family. Feet are the most neglected parts of our body. Some pampering by way of this cream would be most beneficial for anyone at home.

A 50 gm tube of the Foot cream costs Rs. 249. 

My rating for the Natural Foot Cream is 4/5 

My ratings for The MomsCo products:
  • Ease of use: 5/5
  • Appearance: 5/5 I love the brand logo and the colours used for the product. They are elegant and classy.
  • Value for money: 5/5 The prices are really great value for money. 
  • Functionality:  4/5 I really do wish these products were released when I was pregnant. I would have loved to pamper my pregnant bump with their products. Oh well, for now I am very happy with their Body Wash and will continue using it. 

What products did you find hard to come by during your pregnancy? Did you switch to using any natural or toxin free products? Have you used The MomsCo products. What was your experience like?

 

Review: Quantum Cards by Brainsmith

BabyT has been an early talker and his vocabulary consisted of 20 odd words by the time he was 1. He could identify most vegetables, fruits, animals and birds. No, he was not born with this skill. It was something he acquired. How did we do this? Books, a lot of them. But largely it was do with Flash Cards. Our positive experience with Flash Cards convinced me that this was a great way to learn for babies. It stimulated the right skills and so learning happened very quickly. And when I heard of Quantum Cards by Brainsmith I was stunned to see that this was a well researched and thought about product. I was sure flash cards would do #babyT a world of good. But more than that I was intrigued to know how Brainsmith did their Flash Cards differently.

I wrote to Brainsmith and asked if I could use and review their products. They responded quite positively and enthusiastically and the very next day I had the cards in my hand. I was sent the cards titled as Mammals. Now my first thought when I saw the pack was that the concept may be too advanced for babyT at 16 months. But I decided to trust Brainsmith when they said that these cards were suitable for children  from the age of 8 months.

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As with most things, I let babyT open the package himself. He gets quite excited whenever there is a courier package that arrives at home. His orders are to “Kaat” the box and let him rummage through the contents. This gets him quite enthused to use the product (most of the couriers are for him anyway. When did we moms ever buy anything for ourselves right?)

How we started using the Quantum Cards:

  1. We followed the instructions that Brainsmith recommends. To flash each card in front of the child who is to be seated facing you. While doing so you must announce the name of the object or person on the card face.
  2. The whole process should be done quickly say within 15 to 20 seconds. If the child is able to speak, pause between each card to let them repeat the name.
  3. Repeat the process a couple of times per day.
  4. Follow one set for about 3 weeks and then move on to another set of cards.

#BabyT picks up names and new words fairly quickly and within 3 to 5 flashes of the card knew at least half of the animal names – His early picks were Maatayk (Macaque Monkey), Paanda (Panda), Mooch (Moose), Owrus (Walrus), Beear (Beaver) Within another week or so he had picked the rest of the names – Kwala (Koala), Buu Whale (Blue Whale), Kaaroo (Kangaroo), Jaapu (Giraffe – I have no idea why its Jaapu), Fai Fossh (Flying Fox).

I then decided to venture deeper. Now this is the speciality of Brainsmith’s Quantum Cards. They are encyclopaedic and contain a lot of information about the animals on the back side of the card. This information covers the habitat and living conditions of the animal. It also gives inputs about what their primary diet consists of and their habits.

I did realise that some of this information may make no sense to babyT right now. However I picked the simpler ones such as what they ate and where they lived and went with it. For example, he learned that the Maatayk (Macaque monkey) eats fruits, bugs and eggs. He knows that the West African Giraffe lives in Appeeka (Africa.)  and eats leaves and tree twigs. ((Sometimes when daddy is really late from work, babyT says he had gone to Appeeka. I am happy that he knows that Apeeka is really far away and so it takes a long time to get back from. hahha)) BabyT also tells us that the Boo Whale (Blue Whale) lives in the water.

Other ways I supplemented learning with Brainsmith’s Quantum Cards:

  1. Our backyard is lush in Bamboo plants. I got the gardener to bring us some bamboo leaves and showed babyT what Pandas eat. It was nice for babyT to touch and feel the bamboo leaves. He now says Bamboo excitedly when we talk about the Panda card.
  2. Showed him very short YouTube videos of these animals from the National Geographic Kids channel. I don’t think babyT will see a real live Walrus anytime soon. Some screen time when it is educational and supported by adult intervention and supervision is justified. BabyT was really delighted to see these animals come to life on the telly. He enthusiastically picked out all the cards when the matching animal turned up on the TV.
  3. Played Where is …? with the cards.
    brainsmith, quantum cards, flash cards, mammals, animals, mumbai blogger, teaching kids, children learning, learning through play, books, reading, raising a reader
    Spread the cards out in the playroom and asked him to go fetch them when I said the name of the animal.
  4. I bought matching animal figurines for him from Hamleys. Sadly I found only the Giraffe and Macaque monkey of all things. But he loves holding and hugging them both. The figurines from Hamleys are very real and look exactly like they do on the cards.
  5. At random times in the day, even if the cards are not around us I ask him questions about the cards.  Say we are reading a book about the ocean or seas and we spot a walrus, I ask him about it and what it eats and how it looks. BabyT loves imitating a walrus with its two teeth sticking out. 🙂
  6. We make sure whoever comes home, has a session with the cards. So if it is grandparents or friends visiting, babyT fishes out his cards and tells them all that he knows about his mammal friends.

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What I love about Brainsmith’s Quantum Cards:
  1. Great quality cards. BabyT has bent, sat and folded the cards in a million ways. But they don’t really get bent too badly. This is because the paper itself is of a superlative quality.
  2. The images are so artistic and professionally drawn. Brainsmith says all the images are licensed and hand drawn and painted. The fine work shows and is a true reflection of what that object must look like in real life.
  3. The cards themselves are huge. The images therefore are large and contrast well against the clean, white background. This helps create a visual impact on the mind. It stimulates visual learning. When the different senses are used to learn, the learning is more permanent.
  4. The information provided behind each card is succinct and will suit younger children as well as older ones. I am sure we will keep finding new elements about each animal as babyT grows up.
  5. Each set contains 10 cards which is good for a one time learning activity. Other flash cards sets that I have, had like 20 to 30 cards and even I found it too boring to go through them all. I also love the summary card which has images of all the mammals on it. BabyT loves reading and pointing the animals out on his own here.

My ratings for Brainsmith’s Quantum Cards:

  • Ease of use: 5/5
  • Appearance: 5/5 I love the illustrations and the colours. They are classy and appealing. At the same time they contribute to learning.
  • Value for money: 4/5 It is a little expensive at Rs. 699 for a set. However the quality is unmatched.  You can buy a combo pack for a discounted price.
  • Meets its objective: 10/5 hahah .. I do know my math. I am very impressed with the results. And I would highly recommend it to you.

Do you need to use Quantum Cards for your little ones? Yes, you do. I have seen the value that a set of Flash Cards brings. I would love for you to experience the same. Do let me know how your experience was or if you have already used Brainsmith Quantum cards and what you thought of them.

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