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DIY Halloween outfits

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:


Turn a romper into a...

Oriane essential henley romperMeri Meri bear headdress

Grab a super soft romper, add a headdress to it and you've got a baby bear. The romper will come handy for the rest of the year as a quick outfit to go watch the leaves change or even a basic set of PJs. The headdress can be worn over and over again since it's adjustable with a strap.

Or an adorable... 

Oriane essential henley romperMeri Meri flower headdress

The same romper in pink + a shimmery headdress gives you an adorable flower.

Overalls can easily become...

The Simple Folk denim wide leg overallsBebe au Lait classic muslin bib setPineapple Sunshine polka dot headbandPineapple Sunshine polka dot bandanna bib

Women unite! These overalls + bandana bib will turn any little girl into a poster girl in seconds. The overalls are amazingly trendy and will be worn a lot by any of your kids. The bandana bib can be handed down to little siblings or cousins for when teeth are poking through and the drool is flowing.

Transform sweats and a sweater into a... 

All the Babies little sweat setMeri Meri peach sparkle bunny bonnet

A pair of adorable sweats and a knitted hat with bunny ears results in a ver cute and comfortable bunny. The sweats are super cozy and can be worn as a set or separately. The bunny ears can also be worn as a hat during cold days way past Halloween.

Overalls again FTW 🙌

Pineapple Sunshine navy knit dungaree overallsPlan Toys tool belt

Overalls + a set of toy tools and your little one is a mechanic. The overalls can be worn all year round with layers and the wooden toys (which you might already have laying around!) are a worthy add to any playroom.

Jeans and a t-shirt never looked so good 

mi cielo The Van shirtThe Simple Folk easy jeanFather's Factory 35MM Vintage Wooden Toy CameraFather's Factory wooden tripodFather's Factory leather strap

Grab a cool tee, comfy pants and a toy camera and you've got a photographer. The clothes can be worn whenever and the camera set has kept my toddler entertained for hours as he learns how to "take" photos of us.

A hoodie + mask turns into a... 

Cubcoats reversible masksCubcoats tomo tiger hoodie

This hoodie + mask is the easiest Halloween costume ever and keeps kids masked and safe if you decide to go out trick-or-treating. These are just an overall good investment regardless of Halloween, given the times we live in.

This knit set will give you the cutest... 

Hill House Home take me out on the town kit

This fancy knitted set will make any cute baby look like an even cuter bumble bee. If you're feeling crafty you could add some home-made wings or antennae!

Grab their coat and turn them into a... 

The Simple Folk Jua jacketPlan Toys detective kit

A coat + a detective toy set and someone will be running around the house looking for clues. The coat can be styled many ways for the fall and the toy set will make rainy afternoons fun at home.

For multiple kids... 

The Simple Folk boiler suitAll the Babies little sweat set

This is a great idea for a family costume since you'll have a Ghostbuster + some ghosts. All these clothes are easy to style year around, and if you have twins in your family how cute would it be to have two little ghosts running around the house?

Get creative! 

Oriane essential infant tie gown

These knotted gowns can be anything you can think of. Pick your favorite color and add accessories (or maybe even some face paint?) to make your newest addition part of the fun. Wear them at night once the fun is over—they're the easiest way to make nighttime changes a breeze.

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Nuna

New mama life is often fraught with decision fatigue. From choosing a pediatrician to choosing a baby monitor, it can be difficult to know which solutions are made to last. Fortunately, Nuna just made one very important decision a lot easier. That's because their new MIXX Next Stroller has everything a new parent needs to get out, get around and get everything done.

An upgraded version of their popular MIXX stroller, the MIXX Next features a more compact fold (shaving 6.5 inches off the folded size, down to 27.5 inches long and 23.6 inches wide) thanks to a compact fold-away axle where the rear wheels tuck under the frame when it folds. Plus, the new model also stays standing when folded—meaning no more back-straining as you bend to pick up your folded stroller and heave it into the trunk. Instead, the MIXX Next can be tucked more easily into storage whenever your ride comes to an end.


Nuna Mixx Next Stroller


Speaking of the ride, your little one will love the new rear-wheel Free Flex suspension™ and front-wheel progression suspension technology that absorbs more shock as you roll over uneven terrain. The wheels have also been updated to tough, rubber foam-filled tires for a smoother, more durable ride and the no re-thread harness makes it easy to clip your baby in securely and quickly. And when all those gentle bumps lull your baby to sleep? The seat features a five-position recline that adjusts quickly with one-hand—all the way down to a true-flat sleeper recline—just don't forget to move them to their crib when you arrive home. (Don't forget to extend the water repellent, UPF 50+ canopy to keep those sleepy eyes shaded.) Even better, the all-season seat keeps baby cozy in winter and unsnaps to mesh for a cooler ride in the summer.

Perhaps most importantly, though, this stroller is made to last. (After all, what's the point of solving a mama dilemma if it creates another one a few months down the road?) The MIXX Next pairs perfectly with all Nuna PIPA™ series infant car seats using the included car seat ring adapter, and then adapts to a child seat that can face toward you (for a little face time) or forward for when your little one is ready to take on the world. All in all, this stroller gets you where you need to go with a child up to 50 pounds, meaning it's the only one you'll ever need.

The MIXX Next is available in three colors and retails for $749.95.

This article was sponsored by Nuna. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

Our Partners

Tips parents need to know about poor air quality and caring for kids with asthma

There are steps parents can take to keep their children as healthy as possible.

When wildfires struck the West Coast in September 2020, there was a lot for parents to worry about. For parents of children with asthma, though, the danger could be even greater. "There are more than 400 toxins that are present in wildfire smoke. That can activate the immune system in ways that aren't helpful by both causing an inflammatory response and distracting the immune system from fighting infection," says Amy Oro, MD, a pediatrician at Stanford Children's Health. "When smoke enters into the lungs, it causes irritation and muscle spasms of the smooth muscle that is around the small breathing tubes in the lungs. This can lead to difficulty with breathing and wheezing. It's really difficult on the lungs."

With the added concern of COVID-19 and the effect it can have on breathing, many parents feel unsure about how to keep their children protected. The good news is that there are steps parents can take to keep their children as healthy as possible.

Here are tips parents need to know about how to deal with poor air quality when your child has asthma.

Minimize smoke exposure.

Especially when the air quality index reaches dangerous levels, it's best to stay indoors as much as possible. You can find out your area's AQI at AirNow.gov. An under 50 rating is the safest, but between 100-150 is considered unhealthy for sensitive groups, such as children with asthma. "If you're being told to stay indoors, listen. If you can, keep the windows and doors closed," Oro says.

Do your best to filter the air.

According to Oro, a HEPA filter is your best bet to effectively clean pollutants from the air. Many homes are equipped with a built-in HEPA filter in their air conditioning systems, but you can also get a canister filter. Oro says her family (her husband and children all suffer from asthma) also made use of a hack from the New York Times and built their own filter by duct taping a HEPA furnace filter to the front of a box fan. "It was pretty disgusting what we accumulated in the first 20 hours in our fan," she says.

Avoid letting your child play outside or overly exert themselves in open air.

"Unfortunately, cloth masks don't do very much [to protect you from the smoke pollution]," Oro says. "You really need an N95 mask, and most of those have been allocated toward essential workers." To keep at-risk children safer, Oro recommends avoiding brisk exercise outdoors. Instead, set up an indoor obstacle course or challenge your family to jumping jacks periodically to keep everyone moving safely.

Know the difference between smoke exposure and COVID-19.

"COVID-19 can have a lot of the same symptoms—dry cough, sore throat, shortness of breath and chest pain could overlap. But what COVID and other viruses generally cause are fever, chills, vomiting, diarrhea and body aches. Those would tell you it's not just smoke exposure," Oro says. When a child has been exposed to smoke, they often complain of a "scrape" in their throat, burning eyes, cough, shortness of breath, chest pain or wheezing. If the child has asthma, parents should watch for a flare of symptoms, such as coughing, wheezing or a tight sensation in their chest.

Unfortunately, not much is known about long-term exposure to wildfire smoke on a healthy or compromised immune system, but elevated levels of air pollution have been associated with increased COVID-19 rates. That's because whenever there's an issue with your immune system, it distracts your immune system from fighting infections and you have a harder time fighting off viruses. Limiting your exposure to wildfire smoke is your best bet to keep immune systems strong.

Have a plan in place if you think your child is suffering from smoke exposure.

Whatever type of medication your child takes for asthma, make sure you have it on-hand and that your child is keeping up with regular doses. Contact your child's pediatrician, especially if your area has a hazardous air quality—they may want to adjust your child's medication schedule or dosage to prevent an attack. Oro also recommends that, if your child has asthma, it might be helpful to have a stethoscope or even a pulse oximeter at home to help diagnose issues with your pediatrician through telehealth.

Most importantly, don't panic.

In some cases, social distancing and distance learning due to COVID may be helping to keep sensitive groups like children with asthma safer. Oro says wildfires in past years have generally resulted in more ER visits for children, but the most recent fires haven't seen the same results. "A lot of what we've seen is that the smoke really adversely affects adults, especially older adults over 65," Oro says. "Children tend to be really resilient."

This article was sponsored by Stanford Children's Health. Thank you for supporting the brands that support Motherly and mamas.

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100 unusual + surprising baby name ideas

From Adelia to Ziggy.

Our list of 100 baby names that should be on everyone's list this year includes more choices than in the past of names that are obscure and surprising. That's because there are so many more unusual baby names coming into widespread use and baby namers have become a lot more adventurous.

Expectant parents do not need to be told to move beyond Jennifer and Jason. Their thinking about names has evolved to the point that the most useful thing we can do is offer a large menu of intriguing choices.

Here are our picks for the 100 best surprising + unusual baby names now.


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