12 Stroller Accessories You Need

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Maris Stroller from GB.

On-the-go parents need a lot from their strollers. We expect them to hold our babies, our groceries and if we’re lucky our lattes and cell phones. You did your research and purchased the stroller that best suits your family and your lifestyle, but wouldn’t it be great if your stroller had all the bells and whistles you could ever dream of? We’ve done the hard work for you, tracking down the most important – and most helpful – stroller accessories urban parents could need. Here are 12 of our absolute favorite stroller accessories, designed to fit on any stroller. 1. BUGABOO SMARTPHONE HOLDER We’ve all been there: trying to navigate a stroller one-handed while scrolling through our insta-feed. No more! Bugaboo has just released the ultimate modern mama stroller accessory: a smartphone holder. It attaches to the handlebar of any stroller and rests on a rotating ball joint, so you can adjust your phone to any angle. Perfect for casual walks to the park or for your jogger! $34.95, buy here. 2. JJ COLE URBAN BUNDLEME The Urban BundleMe is a must for cold weather babies, letting you leave the blankets at home. The infant version fits into any stroller and jogger and has been tested (Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 213 -- FMVSS213 crash test) to fit onto a five-point harness car seat, allowing the straps to be snuggly around your baby -- a major score in keeping your baby warm, since we know wearing a coat in a carseat is a big no-no. The Urban comes in seven colors of quilted nylon, which protect against wind and rain, while the interior fabric is plush and super soft, giving your baby an extra snuggle for the ride. If the weather warrants extra warmth, the Down is heavier and comes with an attached bag to store when not in use. $49.95, buy here. 3. MUNHCKIN DRINK POD Why don't strollers come with a cup holder? We have babies, we need caffeine! Munchkin to the rescue, with their universal Drink Pod. A stretchy, rubber strap tightly connects it to your stroller’s handlebar. The Drink Pod fits a grande cup from Starbucks and automatically keeps your drink leveled, so no spilling. It’s top-rack dishwasher safe, and provides that extra hand all of us stroller pushers have been praying for! $12, buy here. 4. 7 A.M. ENFANT POLAR WARMMUFFS Stroller pushers need to stay warm, too! We are huge fans of the WarMMuffs. The super soft faux-fur lining keeps your hands warm, and the water repellent outer shell keeps them dry. Best part: they attach to the handlebars of the stroller and are easy to slip in and out of so you can tend to your little one. You can adjust the size to fit small or large hands and have large enough cuffs to fit your coat sleeves. Plus, they’re machine washable! $44, buy here. 5. SKIP HOP EXPLORE AND MORE TOY BAR Keeping your little one entertained in the stroller can be difficult. Skip Hop’s Explore and More Toy Bar does just that, and the best part: you won’t have to bend down and pick it up a million times. The Toy Bar attaches with Velcro to the bumper bar on your baby’s stroller so it won’t fall or get knocked off. There’s a mirror to spin, buttons to push and songs to play (and, mama, an off button for when you’ve heard enough). $16, buy here. 6. BLOOM UNIVERSAL SNUG Bloom’s universal snug insert is a must have for the first year. It fits into most strollers, giving your bundle of joy a little extra comfort. In addition to being super soft and machine washable, the snug gives your newborn the head support she really needs. The newborn headrest insert is removable to allow the snug to grow with your baby. $40, buy here. 7. JUJUBE'S BE CONNECTED Jujube’s Be Connected stroller clips are a lifesaver for keeping your diaper bag handy! Because not all diaper bags are designed to fit onto your stroller’s handlebar, Jujube’s clips make it happen. The Be Connected clips attach to your stroller’s handlebars using high quality metal hardware (in gold, silver or black!) and then securely hang your diaper bag from the handlebar. They’re stylish and easy to use. $25-30, buy here. 8. THE MOMMY HOOK Who wants to push a stroller AND carry shopping bags? That’s right, no one. And now we don’t have to, because The Mommy Hook does it for us. This large, carabineer-style hook fits on your stroller’s handlebar and holds up to 50 pounds. It’s equipped with a foam grip to keep it from sliding around or from scratching your stroller. Score. $9.99, buy here. 9. MUNCHKIN STROLLER ORGANIZER PLUS The Stroller Organizer Plus attaches to your stroller with two Velcro straps. It comes with an insulated space for two drinks, easily accessible wipes for on-the-go messes and a touch-sensitive clear plastic case to slide your phone into. The fabric is water resistant, and there’s even a fold down pocket on the back for extra storage. $23, buy here. 10. PETUNIA PICKLEBOTTOM BOTTLE BUTLER Keeping cold things cold and warm things warm! Petunia Picklebottom’s Bottle Butler can hold one large bottle, two small sippy cups or a variety of little refrigerated snacks – but we won’t tell if you use it for yourself. The patterns are super cute and match many of the brand’s popular diaper bags! The Bottle Butler attaches to a diaper bag or purse with a little metal clip for easy carrying, is machine washable and BPA free. $22, buy here. 11. LASCAL BUGGYBOARD MAXI+ Because sometimes our bigger kids get tired. The Buggyboard Maxi+ allows them to be “big kids” by not riding in the stroller, but helps when they’re just too tired to take another step! You don’t need tools, and instillation takes less than five minutes. With the Maxi+, your little can stand on the platform or sit on the fold down saddle. Built-in suspension makes for a smooth ride over even the bumpiest of sidewalks, and a helpful handlebar strap holds the whole system up when it’s not in use. The Maxi+ is for children 2 to 5-years-old and up to 55 pounds. $189.95, buy here. 12. GB LIGHT UMBRELLA We all know you still need to lather your face with sunscreen during the winter months. Well, baby needs a little protection too. Installed with just one click, this light umbrella from gb is perfect to keep your little one safe from direct sunlight. It has a UVP50+ sun protection and, once attached to the frame, it can swivel to suit the sun's position. $49.99, buy here.
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There are few kids television shows as successful as PAW Patrol. The Spin Masters series has spawned countless toys and clothing deals, a live show and now, a movie.

That's right mama, PAW Patrol is coming to the big screen in 2021.

The big-screen version of PAW Patrol will be made with Nickelodeon Movies and will be distributed by Paramount Pictures.

"We are thrilled to partner with Paramount and Nickelodeon to bring the PAW Patrol franchise, and the characters that children love, to the big screen," Spin Master Entertainment's Executive Vice President, Jennifer Dodge, announced Friday.


"This first foray into the arena of feature film marks a significant strategic expansion for Spin Master Entertainment and our properties. This demonstrates our commitment to harnessing our own internal entertainment production teams to develop and deliver IP in a motion picture format and allows us to connect our characters to fans through shared theatrical experiences," Dodge says.

No word on the plot yet, but we're gonna bet there's a problem, 'round Aventure Bay, and Ryder and his team of pups will come and save the day.

We cannot even imagine how excited little PAW Patrol fans will be when this hits theatres in 2021. It's still too early to buy advance tickets but we would if we could!


In the middle of that postpartum daze, the sleepless nights, the recovery, the adjustment to a new schedule and learning the cues of a new baby, there are those moments when a new mom might think, I don't know how long I can do this.

Fortunately, right around that time, newborns smile their first real smile.

For many mothers, the experience is heart-melting and soul-lifting. It's a crumb of sustenance to help make it through the next challenges, whether that's sleep training, baby's first cold, or teething. Each time that baby smiles, the mother remembers, I can do this, and it's worth it.


Dayna M. Kurtz, LMSW, CPT a NYC-based psychotherapist and author of Mother Matters: A Holistic Guide to Being a Happy, Healthy Mom, says she sees this in her clinical practice.

"One mother I worked with recounted her experience of her baby's first smile. At eight weeks postpartum, exhausted and overwhelmed, she remembered her baby smiling broadly at her just before a nighttime feeding," Kurtz says. "In that moment, she was overcome by tremendous joy and relief, and felt, for the first time, a real connection to her son."

So what is it about a baby's smile that can affect a mother so deeply? Can it all be attributed to those new-mom hormones? Perhaps it stems from the survival instincts that connect an infant with its mother, or the infant learning social cues. Or is there something more going on inside our brains?

In 2008, scientists in Houston, TX published their research on the topic. Their study, "What's in a Smile? Maternal Brain Responses to Infant Facial Cues", takes data from the MRI images of 26 women as they observed images of infants smiling, crying, or with a neutral expression.

The images included the mother's own infant alternated with an unknown infant of similar ethnicity and in similar clothing and position. In each image, the baby displayed a different emotion through one of three facial expressions; happy, neutral, or sad. Researchers monitored the change in the mothers' brain activity through the transitions in images from own-infant to unknown-infant, and from happy to neutral to sad and vice versa.

The results?

"When first-time mothers see their own baby's face, an extensive brain network appears to be activated, wherein affective and cognitive information may be integrated and directed toward motor/behavioral outputs," wrote the study's authors. Seeing her infant smile or cry prompts the areas of the brain that would instigate a mother to act, whether it be to comfort, care for, or caress and play with the baby.

In addition, the authors found that reward-related brain regions are activated specifically in response to happy, but not sad, baby faces. The areas of the brain that lit up in their study are the same areas that release dopamine, the "pleasure chemical." For context, other activities that elicit dopamine surges include eating chocolate, having sex, or doing drugs. So in other words, a baby's smile may be as powerful as those other feel-good experiences.

And this gooey feeling moms may get from seeing their babies smile isn't just a recreational high—it serves a purpose.

This reward system (aka dopaminergic and oxytocinergic neuroendocrine system) exists to motivate the mother to forge a positive connection with the baby, according to Aurélie Athan, PhD, director of the Reproductive & Maternal Psychology Laboratory (a laboratory that created the first graduate courses of their kind in these subjects).

These networks also promote a mother's ability to share her emotional state with her child, which is the root of empathy. "A mother cries when baby cries, smiles when baby smiles," Athan says.

While there's a physiological explanation underlying that warm-and-fuzzy sensation elicited by a smile, there may be other factors at play too, Kurtz says.

"In my clinical practice, I often observe a stunning exchange between a mother and her baby when the latter smiles at her. A mother who is otherwise engaged in conversation with me may be, for that moment, entirely redirected to focus on her little one," Kurtz says. "This kind of attention-capturing on the part of the baby can enable and cultivate maternal attunement—a mother's ability to more deeply connect with her infant. The quality of attunement in early childhood often sets the stage for one's relationship patterns in the future."

Whether a physiological response, a neural activation, simple instinct, or the tightening of emotional connection, the feeling generated by babies' smiles is a buoy in the choppy ocean of new parenthood.

And while the first smile may be the most magical by virtue of its surprise and the necessity of that emotional lift, the fuzzy feeling can continue well into that baby's childhood and beyond. It keeps telling parents, you've got this!

[This was originally published on Apparently]


Chrissy Teigen is one of the most famous moms in the world and definitely one of the most famous moms on social media.

She's the Queen of Twitter and at least the Duchess of Instagram but with a massive following comes a massive dose of mom-shame, and Teigen admits the online comments criticizing her parenting affects her.

"It's pretty much everything," Teigen told Today, noting that the bulk of the criticism falls into three categories: How she feeds her kids, how she uses her car seats and screen time.

"Any time I post a picture of them holding ribs or eating sausage, I get a lot of criticism," she explained. "Vegans and vegetarians are mad and feel that we're forcing meat upon them at a young age. They freak out."


Teigen continues: "If they get a glimpse of the car seat there is a lot of buckle talk. Maybe for one half of a second, the strap slipped down. And TV is another big one. We have TV on a lot in my house. John and I work on television; we love watching television."

Teigen wants the shame to stop, not just for herself but for all the other moms who feel it. (And we agree.)

"Hearing that nine out of 10 moms don't feel like they're doing a good enough job is terrible," she said. "We're all so worried that we're not doing all that we can, when we really are."

The inspiration for Teigen talking publicly about mom-shame may be in part because of her participation in Pampers' "Share the Love" campaign. But even though Teigen's discussion coincides with this campaign, the message remains equally important. Advertising can be a powerful tool for shifting the way society thinks about what's "normal" and we would much rather see companies speaking out against mom-shame than inducing it to sell more stuff.

Calling out mom-shame in our culture is worth doing in our lives, our communities and yes, our diaper commercials. Thank you Chrissy (and thank you, Pampers).


Dear fellow mama,

I was thinking about the past the other day. About the time I had three small boys—a newborn, his 2-year-old brother and his 5-year-old brother.

How I was always drowning.

How I could never catch my breath between the constant requests.

How I always felt guilty no matter how hard I tried.

How hard it was—the constant exhaustion, struggling to keep my home any kind of clean or tidy, how I struggled to feed my kids nutritious meals, to bathe them and clean them and keep them warmly dressed in clean clothing, to love them well or enough or well enough.


Those years were some of the toughest years I have ever encountered.

But mama, I am here to tell you that it doesn't last forever. Slowly, incrementally, without you even noticing, it gets easier. First, one child is toilet trained, then the bigger one can tie his own shoelaces, then finally they are all sleeping through the night.

It's hard to imagine; I really really get it.

It is going to get easier. I swear it. I'm not saying that there won't be new parenting challenges, that it won't be the hardest thing you have ever done in your life. It will be. But it will get easier.

These days, all of my kids get the bus to school and back. Most of them dress themselves. They can all eat independently and use the toilet. Sometimes they play with each other for hours leaving me time to do whatever I need to do that day.

I sleep through the night. I am not constantly in a haze of exhaustion. I am not overwhelmed by three tiny little people needing me to help them with their basic needs, all at the same time.

I can drink a hot cup of coffee. I do not wish with every fiber of my being that I was an octopus, able to help each tiny person at the same time.

I am not tugged in opposite directions. I don't have to disappoint my 3-year-old who desperately wants to play with me while I am helping his first grade bother with his first grade reading homework.

And one day, you will be here too.

It's going to get easier. I promise. And while it may not happen today or even next week or even next month, it will happen. And you will look around in wonder at the magnificent people you helped to create and nurture and sustain.

Until then, you are stronger and more resilient than you can even imagine.

You've got this. Today and always.


A fellow mama

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