Baby Safety Showers – Not Just Fun and Games!

If you’re looking for a creative and different way to honor new moms- and dads-to-be and help them get ready for their baby, consider throwing a baby safety shower instead of the usual “blankets and snugglies” shower.

Traditional baby showers are great fun and they offer new parents an opportunity to prepare their “nests” for the arrival of a new baby. Usually a baby shower is intended to give new parents a leg up in acquiring essential items like baby clothing, bath supplies, bottles or nursing equipment, toys and games, and special blankets or other treasures like silver cups. I’ve always viewed baby showers as one of the best ways that a community can come together around the birth of a new child. It reminds me of one of the best aspects of the “old days” when a town, village, or neighborhood considered the birth and caring for a new child its responsibility, too.

A baby safety shower is in keeping with these old communitarian traditions. It’s more than just fun and games, it’s really a learning experience for the whole community where all the activities revolve around baby and home safety. Parents and caregivers certainly have a great time, but they also leave with a higher awareness of ways to keep their new babies safe at home.

The shower’s theme may focus on a variety of safety issues (see the Baby Safety Checklist below), including child-proofing one’s home, nutrition or health. Also, you can arrange a baby safety shower for as many people as you can fit in your party space. At bigger safety showers, all of the moms and dads in attendance–not just the couple being honored–can visit a variety of exhibits where safety-savvy parents illustrate home safety information with games, puzzles, songs, prizes, and other activities. At smaller showers, it might work better to have one person lead the group in discussions and safety games.

Usually baby showers involve a collection of family and friends of the new parents, but safety showers are also a good way to create and promote partnerships within the broader community. By offering, for example, to distribute baby products donated by local stores, or by providing information from local community health service providers, you can enhance your ties with the local business community and build your relationships with local health and social service organizations. All this creates goodwill in your community and it provides your invited parents with welcome information, products, and services.

Use your creativity to create a baby safety shower for your personal situation. The key to throwing a safety shower that will be rewarding for all involved is providing important safety information in a festive and inviting setting. So–have fun, and learn about the all-important matter of better safety practices for your household.

BABY SAFETY CHECKLIST

The guidelines below were developed by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. It’s important to remember that, while these standards are based on sound principles, certain parents may disagree with some of them. For example, the bedroom guidelines state that a baby should never sleep in the same bed as an adult. However, from the Attachment Parenting perspective, sleeping with one’s baby is considered an important aspect of bonding and is even believed to possibly lower the incidence of SIDS. Therefore, I recommend using the following guidelines as just that, guidelines, which should be examined carefully in light of your own views and beliefs about baby care giving. Always consult your pediatrician if in doubt of the best way to proceed.

Baby Safety Checklist

In the bedroom:

Put your baby to sleep on her back in a crib with a firm, flat mattress and no soft bedding underneath her. Follow this advice to reduce the risk of suffocation and Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). To prevent suffocation, never put babies to sleep on adult beds.

Make sure your baby’s crib is sturdy and has no loose or missing hardware. This will prevent babies suffocating or strangling by becoming trapped between broken crib parts.

Never place your baby’s crib or furniture near window blind or curtain cords. This will prevent babies from strangling on the loop of the cord. To prevent falls, keep children away from windows.

In the bathroom:

Keep medicines and cleaning products in containers with safety caps and locked away from children. This will prevent children from being poisoned.

Always check bath water temperature with your wrist or elbow before putting your baby in to bathe. This will prevent burns to a baby’s delicate skin.

Never, ever, leave your child alone in the bathtub or near any water. This will prevent children from drowning. In addition, keep children away from all standing water, including water in toilets, 5-gallon buckets, and pools.

In the kitchen:

Don’t leave your baby alone in a highchair; always use all safety straps. This will prevent injuries and deaths from the baby climbing out, falling, or sliding under the tray. Be sure to use safety straps in strollers and baby swings.

Use your stove’s back burners and keep pot handles turned to the back of the stove. This will prevent deaths and injuries from burns. In addition, keep children away from tablecloths, so they can’t pull down hot foods or liquids on themselves.

Lock household cleaning products, knives, matches, and plastic bags away from children. This will prevent poisonings, bleeding injuries, burns, and suffocation.

In other living areas:

Install smoke detectors on each floor of your home, especially near sleeping areas; change the batteries each year. This will prevent deaths and injuries from fires.

Use safety gates to block stairways and safety plugs to cover electrical outlets. This will prevent injuries from falls and electric shocks.

Keep all small objects, including tiny toys and balloons, away from young children. This will prevent choking and possible death.

Additional Information and Resources

If you would like more information about baby safety or about how to organize a baby safety shower, including specific tips on planning, organizing, and coordinating one, please write to the Office of Information and Public Affairs, U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, Washington, DC 20207. The article above was adapted from a report prepared by the Product Safety Commission.

Five Fun Camp Games for the Kids

Camping is such a fun activity for kids and for the parents too. However, it will be more fun and enjoyable when you have camping games on your list. You should remember to take into consideration the preferences of the kids to make this camping moment a truly memorable one. So to help you on your camping preparations, here are five fun and easy camp games that you might want to include on your list:

1. Ah! So! Gi! – All participants will sit in circle around bonfire perhaps. The group will learn three commands for this game.

Ah! – they will shout “Ah!” aloud and put their left or right hand across their forehead in a salute motion. They will then point to the person sitting next to them.

So! – they will shout “So!” aloud while putting their left or right hand across their chin in a salute motion. They will then point to the person next to them.

Gi! – they will shout “Gi!” while placing both their hands across their chest in a clapping motion. They will then point towards any person in circle.

The commands and corresponding actions shall be done in order. When someone is “Gi”ed by another person, he/she shall start the sequence from the top. The person who will fail to follow the correct order and action of each command will be booted out from the circle until only two participants left. Of course, the last one with no mistake will be the winner of the game.

2. Hot Seat – One person will be on the “hot seat” and will have a piece of paper on his forehead with a word written on it. He/she will ask various questions and the rest of the group will answer “yes”, “no” or “maybe” until he/she gets the correct answer. A timer is used in getting the correct answer. If the person did not get the right answer within the time allowed, then he/she has to perform a consequence.

3. Follow the Leader – There will be one leader and the rest of the kids will follow whatever this leader do or say. Participants who will fail to follow the exact words or actions of the leader will be out of the game. The last one standing shall be announced as the winner.

4. Bean bag toss game – Prepare some all-weather cornhole bags for exciting beanbag toss game for your camper kids. This game is fun and easy for the kids. They will just need to aim and toss the beanbag filled with feed corns at a raised platform with a hole at the end to be able to play the game.

5. Scavenger’s hunt – You can also organize a scavenger’s hunt activity for your kids. However, if you are going to camp on mountains or forest, you might want to make the game easier for them to avoid going in farther areas. Make sure that adults are also surrounding the place to look after the kids.

These are some examples of perfect games that will make your camping activity more fun and memorable. The kids and adults will surely have a great time playing these games.

MoS2 Low Friction Coatings – Not Just For The Aviation Industry Anymore

MoS2 low friction coatings (also known as molybdenum disulfide, also spelled, disulphide) are regarded the most widely used form of solid film lubrication today. What makes them unique (with the other dichalcogenides) is the weak atomic interaction (Van der Waals) of the sulfide anions, while covalent bonds within molybdenum are strong.Thus, lubrication relies on slippage along the sulfur atoms. All the properties of the lamella structure are intrinsic. No external form of moisture is required. In fact, best performance from MoS2 low friction coatings is attained in the absence of water vapor, which are prone to surface adsorption. This makes them ideal under vacuum.There are a number of methods to apply MoS2 low friction coatings, including a simple rubbing or burnishing, air-spraying resin-bonded or inorganically bonded coatings, and more recently by sputtering through physical vapor deposition (PVD).Thickness will vary, depending on form of MoS2 low friction coatings, but typically ranges between 5 to 15 micrometer. Sputtering techniques can produce thin films of 0.2 micrometer. While plasma sprays will result in higher builds, beginning at 0.003 inch or more.Friction coefficient less than 0.05 is attainable, but will also vary with humidity and sliding conditions. Tests show friction decreases with increasing vacuum strength. Friction also lowers with higher load, faster surface speed, or both. In fact, MoS2 low friction coatings are superior to both graphite and tungsten disulfide (WS2). Friction with MoS2 low friction coatings is independent of particle size, though the larger particles can carry more load.Dry lubrication for MoS2 low friction coatings remains superior at higher temperatures, with oxidation rates remaining relatively low at temperatures up to 600 degrees Fahrenheit. And in dry, oxygen-free atmospheres, lubricating performance, even with oxidation products, is stable to 1300 degrees Fahrenheit.Higher air flow can affect oxidation kinetic rates in atmosphere. Molybdenum oxide products (MoO3) and sulfur dioxide. Since MoO3 alone offers dry lubrication, based on its relative softness, molybdenum disulfide coating are ideal in higher temperature environments. At higher temperatures, though, they are better suited under vacuum. In atmosphere, they are prone to water adsorption from air based on their hygroscopic properties.As with the other dry film lubricants, while differences may prove negligible, you will have to determine which is better for you: longer wear life or better performance, using MoS2 low friction coatings. Generally, friction will be slightly higher by coating both surfaces, rather than coating one surface only. But wear life will increase coating both surfaces.Friction can be good in so many areas of life. Without it we could not easily stop and start our motion, or change direction. But in moving machinery, friction causes considerable loss of energy, poorer performance, not to mention limiting wear life.As with many non-lubricated systems, the static coefficient of friction is higher than the dynamic coefficient of friction. The resultant motion is often referred to as ‘stick-slip’. Basically, the two surfaces stick together until the elastic energy within the system has accumulated to some threshold, where a sudden, forward slip takes place. Under magnification, it’s apparent the union of two surfaces is often limited to intimate contact only at the tips of a few of the asperities (small scale, surface irregularities). At these point areas, pressures relating to contact may be near the hardness of the softer material. Thus, plastic deformation occurs on some localized scale. This is known as cold welding. Where bonded junctions are formed between two materials.For lubrication to occur, these bonds, this adhesive component of friction, must be broken. And this is where products like MoS2 low friction coatings serve well.So, where are these products used today? Consider aerospace, automotive, marine and electronic, for starters. There, you’ll find MoS2 low friction coatings, again and again.