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How to get your family to start running

Summer is approaching, which means that our kids are going to want to spend more time with us in the sunshine 🌞

This 3-step strategy will help you plan a wonderful, active, healthy family activity and share precious bonding moments with your little one. With summer quickly approaching, now is the perfect time to start planning your summer activities as a family. The health benefits of running are hard to ignore and, at Storkcraft, we believe in the mantra: “Families that play together, grow together.”

In this blog post we will talk about how, as a company, we organized a fun “family run” for our staff and signed up for the 6.21-mile (10-kilometer) Vancouver Sun Run. As we encouraged our staff to join us for the run, we realized that some of the challenges we faced when recruiting participants might be similar to what parents could face when trying to get their children to be active.

employees working in a white office

1. Where to begin? 
When communicating with kids about a family activity (in this case a family fun run), you’ll need to remember that everything must have a “cool factor” to it. In a world filled with so many distractions (video games, mobile phones, and tablet computers) not many kids will necessarily see the appeal of going on a 2-mile run.

To get your little one interested in the idea of trying something new and challenging, you will need to generate a certain amount of “buzz” around the idea of participating in the event, and deliver the so-called “wow-factor” up front. Having “social proof” will make it easier to convince your kid that “cool people” are also going to be participating in this healthy activity! To make this a fun family run, we began generating buzz around the office by designing an exclusive, new Storkcraft running t-shirt. Receiving this cool new t-shirt made our staff really feel like a part of Vancouver’s most iconic running event, boasting over 43,000 participants.

2. Break the ice
Creating buzz generates a lot of interest and raises a lot of questions. If you are trying to get your kids interested in a family fun run, you must be strategic with how you respond to their questions. Share stories of how much friends and family enjoyed similar healthy activities. Simple, positive details will help get your kids get excited for this event!

people smiling for a picture ready for a race

3. The moment of truth
Now that your kids are prepared to face this challenge, we need to make sure it’s fun, enjoyable, and realistic. This is how we explained the challenge (Vancouver Sun Run) to our staff: We asked our staff if they could walk or run for 0.621 miles (1 kilometer). The response was positive, as that is not too long of a distance. In order to overcome this obstacle and successfully face this challenge, our staff would simply need to overcome this obstacle 10 times. Equipped with the right mindset, the Storkcraft family was ready to take on this new challenge. The Vancouver Sun Run had a significant impact on our family at Storkcraft. Some of us who though this challenge was too big were surprised by their performance at the end of the event. Overall, the experience brought our staff closer together.

Kids love it when there is an exciting, positive buzz surrounding something. This can make them curious to try it out for themselves. The precious memories you build together with these activities will last a lifetime. The health benefits of getting your kids to run (or to be active in general) will also help them in the long run. Kids who choose a healthy lifestyle at an early age have a lower risk of diseases like diabetes and obesity, and are able to handle stressful situations better than others. In summary, the Vancouver Sun Run had an overwhelmingly positive impact on our company and was truly a family fun run for us. The pre-event excitement and post-event sense of accomplishment brought our staff closer together, made us realize that, together, we can accomplish any obstacle, and that participating in a healthy outdoor activity is a great way to bond. We are certain that your family will experience similar positive results by participating in an outdoor healthy activity together.

How to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a baby

With St. Patrick’s Day on the horizon, follow these 5 fun, easy, and family-friendly tips to make sure you and your little one enjoy the festivities!

St. Patrick’s Day is just around the corner and things are starting to look green! It’s a festival for people (and babies) of all ages. You don’t have to be Irish to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with a baby – you simply need to embrace the holiday spirit! Here are 5 fun things you can do with your little one this St. Patrick’s Day:

1. Getting your little one to look the part:
St. Patrick’s Day with a baby would not be complete without dressing them up for some adorable photos! It’s not always about dressing them up as a leprechaun, though – you can also dress them up like your favorite green vegetable (like an avocado or broccoli), try a new costume (like a green parrot or frog), or even a green cartoon character (like Shrek or “baby Hulk”)! Something as simple as green socks (or even a green diaper!) will bring out the holiday spirit!

Baby green background green dress costume

2. Send positive green vibes:
Set the mood for St. Patrick’s Day by making a big deal out of it, just like it was their birthday! You can find almost anything you need at your local dollar store. Send “positive green vibes” to your little one by decorating with green streamers, green wall hangings (like leprechaun hats and shamrocks), green towels, green toys, and even by incorporating green baby bowls and plates. All this, with a touch of traditional Irish music, and you will set the holiday mood for your little one!

3. A green meal:
No festival is complete without food for the occasion. On special occasions, it’s fun to eat delicious treats with your family – and what better occasion than St. Patrick’s Day to have some tasty green treats? If your baby can eat solid or semi-solid foods then it’s time to get creative in the kitchen! You can plan your meals from breakfast to dinner around the “green” theme. You can start breakfast with green pancakes, have cilantro-lime green rice with pesto chicken for the main course, green smoothies, and make delicious sides like minted pea mash, avocado mash, etc.

parenting green baby food drink smoothie

4. Celebrate the festival:
If you live in a big city, find out what events are going on in your community. St. Patrick’s Day parade is one of the most fun and family-friendly parties you can attend with your little one. From live music to dancing, and parade floats, this is truly a fun way to spend St. Patrick’s Day with your baby. If you are around live music, always remember to protect your little one’s hearing from loud music.
Some of us relate festivals to doing great deeds for those in need. St. Patrick’s Day can also be celebrated by donating to charity or taking your little one to the charity with you. Teaching your kids at a young age to give back to the community will prepare them for a better tomorrow.

5. Quality family time:
Most of us lead busy lives, and all know that it is hard to find the right work-life balance. We do not get to spend nearly as much time with our little ones as we would like to. Festivals are the perfect excuse to catch up with your family and get some quality snuggle time with your baby. Watching movies, playing games, or even doing something as simple as making family videos will make memories that you will cherish tomorrow.

parenting baby love family

Photo by Luis Quintero on Unsplash

St. Patrick’s Day is another great way to make fun, lasting memories with your child that they will cherish when they grow up. Regardless of whether or not you are Irish, St. Patrick’s Day about spending time with your loved ones. Get your kids involved in your preparations, build up the excitement, and make a big deal out of it – and try to find the leprechaun! Fun family moments like these make memories that last forever.

5 Tips for New Parents when Flying with a Baby!

It’s the moment of truth, are you up for the challenge?

Remember the “simpler times” when your biggest worries while flying were what movies to watch or what book to read? Or asking yourselves, “Will the seats be comfortable for this extra-long cross-country flight?” Well, now that you have a new person in your life (your baby!), those days are gone; flying with a baby is whole other ball game. But don’t panic! With these 5 simple hacks, air travel will be an enjoyable family memory, rather than a terrifying experience for mom and dad

1. The “pep talk”

This pep talk is not for your little one, but rather for yourselves! Your little munchkin only knows the universal language of all babies: cry when you need something! Cry when you are hungry; cry when you need a clean-up, or cry just because you can! To psyche yourself up, stand in front of a mirror and tell yourself, “I am the best mom (or dad) there is, ever was, and ever will be!”. Also tell yourself, “This will be the most fun trip ever,” or “I am so excited about this trip.” You can also say, “I have mastered the art of flying with a baby,” and so on. Putting yourselves into a positive frame of mind can have a significant impact on your overall flying experience.
woman in the beach
Image courtesy of flickr.com

2. Your baby’s luggage

As a parent, we all know that traveling light does not exist. Your little pumpkin will require the same essentials regardless of whether it is a short-haul one-hour flight or cross-country overnight flight. Packing ahead of time by at least 2-3 days will give you enough time to buy last-minute essentials that you might be running low on, or even organize your baby’s luggage as per your liking. If it is your first time flying with a baby, it is especially helpful to have a checklist made so you do not forget the essentials like diapers, baby lotion, milk/formula, toys, pacifier, change of clothes, etc

3. Substance over style

It’s all about how good you look…. or is it? When flying with a baby, convenience takes precedence over fashion. Oversized shirts, skinny jeans, and high heels look great, but nothing is more convenient than what’s actually comfortable, such as sweatpants and t-shirt with your hair tied. Another convenient tip: easy access to deep pockets to keep your little one’s pacifier, toys, and other little essentials handy. Wearing comfortable clothes makes it easier for you to carry your baby, especially when going through security and/or boarding the flight.
smiley mom holding a baby
Image courtesy of flickr.com

4. The Game Plan

Planning ahead of time is key when traveling with your little one. Notify your airlines that you are flying with a baby ahead of time so they can help you secure preferred seating. Most airports have expedited security screening for new parents, and most airlines will allow you to pre-board the flight for convenience. Before boarding your flight, ensure that your little munchkin is wearing clean diapers and (ideally) is ready for a feed when you take off and just before landing, as this helps the baby dealing with the air pressure change. The front row of the aircraft, or somewhere close to the restroom, will be the most convenient location for you. Finally, be sure to check ahead of time what you are allowed to take in your carry on and what you might need to check in.
woman biting pen
Image courtesy of flickr.com

5. Entertainment

This is for mom and dad. When you take off and your little angel falls asleep, this is your time to make up for some of that much needed “me-time”. Entertainment can include snacks, books, tv shows, or even playing sudoku in today’s newspaper! Some North American airlines are now charging extra for snacks, wi-fi, and even in-flight entertainment! To avoid these added costs, be sure to download some e-books, movies, or TV shows that you’ve been wanting to watch on Netflix, as this will make your in-flight experience much more enjoyable and relaxing.

Flying with a baby is not easy; it can be complicated and stressful. However, if you are in the right mindset then traveling will your little one, things can be much easier than what most people may say. Some final words of wisdom: apologize to your fellow passengers when necessary, and always remember to ask your flight attendants for help. Most airlines and officials go above-and-beyond their regular duties to help new parents with babies. Remember to relax, be positive, be comfortable, smile, and take a lot of pictures – don’t forget, this is a big moment: your baby’s first time flying!

Baby proofing your house: Nursery Edition

It’s time to put on your super-mom and super-dad capes: babyproofing your house should have should have been completed yesterday!

Have you ever wondered what your little ones are up to when you are not around? Have they already mastered the art of rolling over and holding up their head? Have you ever left them lying on their back and, within two seconds, they are already on their belly playing with their toys. We have gathered tips from expert parents to help you prepare for your children’s safety! To start, baby proofing your house begins in the nursery.

  1. Location of the crib in the nursery
    The most convenient location for your baby’s crib is right next to your nursery door. This will be especially useful when your baby calls for you in the middle of the night. One mistake to certainly avoid is keeping the crib next to the window: as much as we would like for our little one to get enough sunlight, the window can be hazardous to your little one. As children begin to sit or stand up, they often try to support themselves with objects in their surroundings. Because of this, window blinds can be especially hazardous at this stage. Windows also can be a haven for dust, insects, and hot or cold temperatures. For your child’s health and safety, it is important that the crib is located in the right spot.Espresso Crib and Dresser in the Nursery room

    Portofino Convertible Crib and Changer

  2. Using the right furniture in the nursery
    The toddler stage is one of the cutest and most fun stages in childhood, as your little one begins to speak, crawl, walk, etc. As a parent, you know that a simple “boo boo” hurts you more than it hurts them. Choosing the right furniture is crucial when baby proofing your nursery. Make smart decisions, and choose furniture that meets anti-tipping standards, has soft edges, and utilizes anti-tipping brackets for additional safety benefits to prevent any accidents.
    White crib and white dresser in a gender neutral nursery room

    Alpine 4 Drawer Dresser

  3. Don’t forget about outlets
    When we were kids, our parents told us not to play with fire. What did we do? Well, some of us learned it the hard way! Don’t allow your child to make the same mistake. Use safety outlet covers, or simply cover up the power outlets with tape, to prevent dangerous accidents.
    Baby playing with the outlet

    Image courtesy of Flickr.com and then modified

  4. Choose the right mattress
    There are so many mattresses available today that it is hard to know which one is best for your baby’s growth and development. Most doctors recommend that your baby’s crib mattress should be firm and breathable. Mattresses that are too soft or low in breathability can increase the risk of suffocation. When buying a mattress, it is highly recommended that you look for one that is high in breathability and is not too soft.
    Baby mattress

    Graco Premium Mattress

  5. What’s inside the crib
    The constant excitement and ever-present urge to clean and decorate while awaiting the arrival of your newborn! While we love the idea of using decorative pillows, blankets, soft toys, crib bumpers, and other cuddly things for our baby’s crib, these items can prove to be risky for your baby’s safety. Most of these items are low in breathability and present a choking hazard. Baby proofing your nursery should be the first step to baby proofing your house.
    Pink nursery room/blue nursery room

    Image courtesy of Flickr.com and then modified

If you are a new parent or a soon to be one, baby proofing your house should be your top priority. Remember – to your little one, your home is one big playground! Although it is fun to watch your little ones play, almost anything can present a hazard to them; it is imperative to prioritize safety. Simple precautions like using door stoppers, ensuring the windows are properly closed, and many of the tips above can prevent major accidents.

Stay tuned to our blog for more safety tips for your little one around the house.

Women’s Choice Award endorses Storkcraft for the second consecutive year!

At Storkcraft we believe in Family above all. Life is about bonding with those who we care about the most. From the precious first moments you share with your little one to the moments you share together as a family, we are committed to being there with you along the way.  

For the second consecutive year, we are honored to be recognized as America’s Most Recommended Baby Furniture Company by the Women’s Choice Award. The Women’s Choice Award is the collective recommendation of women across America and honors brands that women would choose for themselves and also recommend it to their family and friends. The Women’s Choice Award understands that women are busy, and that life brings about many challenges, so their goal is to provide women and their families with the tools and resources that will empower them in their life goals and improve their lives. 

We get it, we have been in your shoes; Our products are made by families for families. For the last 70 years, we have made great family furniture products so that you can focus on those precious moments with your family. We focus on Safety, design, and the community so that you can focus on the moments.  

As you prepare the perfect nest for your little munchkin, we’ll be here for anything you need. Need help on choosing the right crib? Need advice on decorating? Or maybe you just want to know what other parents have done? We’ll be right here. Our top-notch customer service will guide you through our wide assortment of beautiful cribs, gliders, rockers, dressers, bunk beds, and all other nursery items and help you build your dream nursery.