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Reflections: 13 Stories You Loved

After playing proud mama to more than 8 months’ worth of WRNY stories, here’s 13 of our reader faves.

Reflections: 13 Stories You Loved

We love the end of the year just like the rest of you, with everyone’s “Best Ofs” and “Top 10s” and “In Case You Missed It” lists. It’s basically like the CliffsNotes of pop culture -- all you need to chat it up at that NYE party is wrapped into one glorious week of reading. But now that we’re on the list-making (and baby-making) side, we realize that it’s hard to pick a favorite child -- and for us, just about every post on Well Rounded NY feels like something we personally birthed. So instead of playing favorites with our own flesh and blood, we’ve done a little digging into what posts our faithful readers found most useful, thought-provoking and down-right entertaining.

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Below, we’ve unearthed your favorite 13 WRNY posts of 2013. So just “In Case You Missed It,” click on through for some quality reads* that will keep you chatting all NYE long...or at least till 10 p.m. when it’s totally fair to pull the pregnancy card and hit the sack.

Here’s to a fantastic year ahead!

1. DIY: Stretch Mark Cream. Adina Grigore of S.W. Basics of Brooklyn puts the active ingredient in all those other stretch mark creams to work in just one simple recipe.

2. Breastfeeding Blog-lovin’. Kaity rounds up the 5 blogs that helped get her through one more day, week, month and year of breastfeeding.

3. 8 Great Brooklyn Baby Shops. Stock up on baby booty all throughout the borough with these Well Rounded picks.

4. It’s Vintage. The art of thrifting doesn’t end in the first trimester. Thrift-maven and NYC entrepreneur Fleur Childs helps us show you how to make it work.

5. In Defense of the Bottle. Jessica talks about the ups and downs she experienced as a bottle-feeding mama.

6. Attached in the City. Kaity woke up one day and realized she might just be an attachment parent. Here are 5 ways NYC might be turning you into one too.

7. Tip Sheet: Stay at Home Mom. WRNY contributor Elizabeth Carr tells us about her personal decision to say goodbye to her nine-to-five and stay home with her baby.

8. Celebrity Soul Sisters. Find out how a common due date brought Jessica and Kim Kardashian together.

9. Double Up. Here's our 5 favorite double strollers for when you’re traveling in NYC with two in tow.

10. Morning Musings: Mommy Shorts. Ilana Wiles, aka Mommy Shorts, shows us that the perfect mommy is most loved for her imperfections.

11. Top 5 Pinners and Boards to Follow. Darling Clementine rounds up her favorite places to get inspired on Pinterest.

12. Top 5 Newborn Carriers. Caribou Baby helps unwrap the mystery behind choosing a baby carrier.

13. Well Rounded NY is Here. Who doesn’t love a good birth story? Here’s how our baby, Well Rounded NY, made its debut.

What was your favorite story? Tell us about it in the comments below!

*Posts in no particular order.

This year many of us have a tighter budget than usual given (looks around) everything that has happened. Coupled with the uncertainty of what Halloween might look like, many of us are reluctant to spend money on brand new costumes that our kids will outgrow by next year. I get it. But I also know that many, like me, love Halloween so much. I thought about skipping the celebration this year, but that just feels like too big of a disappointment in an already disappointing year.

That's why I started looking into alternative costumes—something my kids will be able to wear once the clock hits November, and maybe even hand down to siblings and cousins in the coming years. At the same time, I'm not a DIY person, so I wanted outfits that didn't require any sewing or hot glue. Last year I attempted using one to build my son's Care Bear costume, and of course, I burnt my hand.

So with some creativity (and the brainpower of my colleagues), we came up with these costumes that are both fun and practical, made with items that your children will be able to (and want to!) wear year around:

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Sorry, you can’t meet our baby yet

Thank you for understanding. ❤️

In just over three weeks, we will become parents. From then on, our hearts will live outside of our bodies. We will finally understand what everyone tells you about bringing a child into the world.

Lately, the range of emotions and hormones has left me feeling nothing short of my new favorite mom word, "hormotional." I'm sure that's normal though, and something most people start to feel as everything suddenly becomes real.

Our bags are mostly packed, diaper bag ready, and birth plan in place. Now it's essentially a waiting game. We're finishing up our online childbirth classes which I must say are quite informational and sometimes entertaining. But in between the waiting and the classes, we've had to think about how we're going to handle life after baby's birth.

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I don't mean thinking and planning about the lack of sleep, feeding schedule, or just the overall changes a new baby is going to bring. I'm talking about how we're going to handle excited family members and friends who've waited just as long as we have to meet our child. That sentence sounds so bizarre, right? How we're going to handle family and friends? That sentence shouldn't even have to exist.

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Life

14 outdoor toys your kids will want to play with beyond summer

They transition seamlessly for indoor play.

With Labor day weekend in the rearview and back-to-school in full swing, most parents are fresh out of boxes to check on their "Fun Concierge" hit list. It's also the point of diminishing returns on investing in summer-only toys. So with that in mind, we've rounded up some of our favorite toys that are not only built to last but will easily make the transition from outdoor to indoor play. Even better, they're Montessori-friendly and largely open-ended so your kids can get a ton of use out of them.

From sunny backyard afternoons to rainy mornings stuck inside, these toys are sure to keep little ones engaged and entertained.

Meadow ring toss game

Plan Toys meadow ring toss game

Besides offering a fantastic opportunity to hone focus, coordination, determination and taking turns, lawn games are just plain fun. Set them up close together for the littles and spread them out when Mom and Dad get in on the action. With their low profile and rope rings, they're great for indoors as well.

$30

Balance board

Plan Toys balance board

Balance boards are a fabulous way to get the wiggles out. This one comes with a rope attachment, making it suitable for even the youngest wigglers. From practicing their balance and building core strength to working on skills that translate to skateboarding and snowboarding, it's a year-round physical activity that's easy to bring inside and use between Zoom classes, too!

$75

Detective set

Plan Toys detective setDetective Set

This set has everything your little detective needs to solve whatever mystery they might encounter: an eye glasses, walkie-talkie, camera, a red lens, a periscope and a bag. Neighborhood watch? Watch out.

$40

Wooden doll stroller

Janod wooden doll strollerWooden Doll Stroller

Take their charges on a stroll around the block with this classic doll stroller. With the same versatility they're used to in their own ride, this heirloom quality carriage allows their doll or stuffy to face them or face the world.

$120

Sand play set

Plan Toys sand set

Whether you're hitting the beach or the backyard sandbox, this adorable wooden sand set is ready for action. Each scoop has an embossed pattern that's perfect for sand stamping. They're also totally suitable for water play in the wild or the bathtub.

$30

Water play set

Plan Toys water play set

Filled with sand or water, this tabletop sized activity set keeps little ones busy, quiet and happy. (A mama's ideal trifecta 😉). It's big enough to satisfy their play needs but not so big it's going to flood your floors if you bring the fun inside on a rainy day.

$100

Mini golf set

Plan Toys mini golf set

Fore! This mini golf set is lawn and living room ready. Set up a backyard competition or incorporate into homeschooling brain breaks that shift focus and build concentration.

$40

Vintage scooter balance bike

Janod retro scooter balance bike

Pedals are so 2010. Balance bikes are the way to go for learning to ride a bike while skipping the training wheels stage altogether. This impossibly cool retro scooter-style is built to cruise the neighborhood or open indoor space as they're learning.

$121

Wooden rocking pegasus

plan toys wooden rocking pegasus

Your little will be ready to take flight on this fun pegasus. It gently rocks back and forth, but doesn't skimp on safety—its winged saddle, footrests and backrest ensure kids won't fall off whether they're rocking inside or outside.

$100

Croquet set

Plan Toys croquet set

The cutest croquet set we've ever seen! With adorable animal face wooden balls and a canvas bag for easy clean up, it's also crafted to stick around awhile. Round after round, it's great for teaching kiddos math and problem-solving skills as well.

$45

Wooden digital camera

fathers factory wooden digital camera

Kids get the chance to assemble the camera on their own then can adventure anywhere to capture the best moments. With two detachable magnetic lenses, four built-in filters and video recorder, your little photographer can tap into their creativity from summertime to the holidays.

$179

Wooden bulldozer toy

plan toys wooden bulldozer toy

Whether they're digging up sand in the backyad or picking up toys inside, kids can get as creative as they want picking up and moving things around. Even better? Its wooden structure means it's not an eye sore to look at wherever your digger drops it.

$100

Pull-along hippo

janod toys pull along hippo toy

There's just something so fun about a classic pull-along toy and we love that they seamlessly transition between indoor and outdoor play. Crafted from solid cherry and beechwood, it's tough enough to endure outdoor spaces your toddler takes it on.

$33

Baby forest fox ride-on

janod toys baby fox ride on

Toddlers will love zooming around on this fox ride-on, and it's a great transition toy into traditional balance bikes. If you take it for a driveway adventure, simply use a damp cloth to wipe down the wheels before bringing back inside.

$88

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