Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Baby modeling tips when your baby is active and moving!

Phoenix had a great shoot this morning for a children's clothing retailer again, last time it was for a group shot but this time Phoenix shot by himself. Once dressed I quickly placed him on set and slipped out, the baby wranglers did the rest. I felt anxious, nervous and excited for him, could hear the camera popin and cheers, a few moments later he was done. Baby modeling is a very "we'll see" industry, you show up and sometimes a couple babies are booked for the same outfit and even though you're baby is booked you don't know if he/she will be photographed that day or not. Babies still get paid regardless though. Then you don't know if the shot will make it to usage. Today was holiday website shots but who knows, we are hoping by October/Nov-ish it will be out but it's a we'll see industry.
I packed a lot of toys but we were only there for a short time today, for a couple hours. Although you never know how long the day will be, it could be a long 7 hour day. Playing on the couches that were there and the few toys available can get dull fast, so it's a good idea to bring your own toys (it's amazing how parents don't bring toys for their kids to play with.)

This time I brought bringing a baby walker toy, more books and toys, while keeping in mind to pack items that I don't mind other kids playing with or potentially stealing/taking/using/losing since that it what happens when many babies are together in one place. So I'm being selective but thinking about what will keep Phoenix interested and busy, active but not overly tired.

A ball, a sit-to-stand baby walker that has buttons and doodads to touch, spin and play with, books (4), shape toys that go into a box which can hold his teething toys too, and also bringing the iPad with tons of book and educations and fun apps ready.

Keep your baby in something comfortable to wear, comfortable and also protective of body for bumps and bruises, scratches. Maybe sweatpants or comfy pants would be best depending on if your baby is wearing shorts or short sleeves.

You, as the parent, or guardian should be wearing something comfortable for the day, you will be on the floor, on the blanket playing and the floors aren't always clean, it's a studio, it's a working environment so be aware that you might get dirty and your baby also might get dirty too, which is something you want to be careful of before he/she goes on set.

I like to carry a packs of Johnson's hand and face wipes. Be aware of your baby falling, bumping his/her head, scratches, etc. There are hair and makeup people but usually it consists of a quick brush to the hair and that's it for babies, baby models do not wear makeup or get it applied to cover up a bruise. Yes, there's Photoshop for that but you want to be courteous of the booking and keep your baby as bruise free as possible while keeping him/her active and happy before the shoot.

Other things to bring:

An extra outfit to wear before shooting, you might already naturally have this in your diaper bag, but it's a good idea.

Bibs, usually the stylist crew will give your baby a bib to wear once dressed for the shoot to help prevent drool, etc from getting on the clothes, but also bring your own too, again this is prob a diaper bad no brainer.

Baby lotion, just a tad. We use Aveeno Baby

Cell phone charger


Monday, June 24, 2013

Yeehaw rocking horse!

Phoenix: My Dad rocks, he got me a horse! A rocking horse, that is yeehaw


Friday, June 14, 2013

We recently read Spunky the Monkey

I remember loving Spunky the Monkey as a kid and shared it with Phoenix, we've read it a few times, it's a sweet story about an ambitious, energetic, curious monkey Spunky, who tries to get out of the zoo, but it proves to be a challenge that shares it's always good to try things that are even difficult. 

Thursday, June 13, 2013

WHAT ARE THESE PUBLISHERS THINKING? 3 children's books I won't read to my baby anytime soon

Grrrrr. I was at Barnes and Noble yesterday and saw these 2 books I will not be reading to Phoenix. I just don't understand what inspires these books to be published? I get it, parents would like the sarcasm, but to me it seems like most kids would be scared after their parents read them these books, at least until they are, um, I'd say like eight or nine or ten years old or so, or...never.

I'd Really Like to Eat a Child...um what if there was a book I'd Really Like to Kill an Alligator.

What's for dinner? Monsters Eat Whiny Children, this book is full of sarcasm and it does have a Tim Burton vibe I can appreciate but it's not something to share with a younger child. Maybe get it for a parent-friend who is stressed out over parenting or something.

Mmm books about eating your kids, mmm kind of humorous but more like, no thanks.

Also, we love reading Eric Carle's The Very Hungry Caterpillar but at the book store I flipped through The Very Busy Spider and put it right back on the shelf only a few pages in, it upsets me, why does the Spider totally ignore the animals on the farm when they want to play with her, why doesn't she just say I'm busy right now but we can play later. Why does this book encourage to ignore people when they talk to you when you are busy? A kind reply would have been nice.

I will be adding more children's books I will not be reading to my baby in the near future. Yes, suppose I could grab my Sharpie and go at The Very Busy Spider like I did with The Giving Tree, and maybe I will.

Be a picky parent when it comes to the books you share with your child, we get to influence our babies for only a short time but this short time can inspire a lifetime of reading and lessons learned of acts of kindness.


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Saturday, June 8, 2013

Phoenix's hat for the Belmont Stakes 2013

Phoenix's hat for the Belmont Stakes, got the trimmings at M&J Trimming www.mjtrim.com on 6th Avenue and the hat is from Children's Place


Friday, June 7, 2013

A new book of Nursery Rhymes because it's been 25 years

Jeez I haven't sung a nursery rhyme in so long, like 25 years! Which is why we picked up a cute book of nursery rhymes today after story-time at the fabulous and creative, unique and totally different book store Barefoot Books in FAO Schwartz today. Earlier this week we read another cute Barefoot Book together called Star Seeker, we will be featuring it along with other Barefoot Book favorites, coming up! 

The Uppababy G-Luxe is a keeper

Tried out our UPPAbaby G-Luxe yesterday, it's a keeper, besides that Phoenix threw his bottle and lost a sock (last I knew he was eating it and I guess ripped it off and flicked it on the street) but it was a smooth ride, up curbs and all. Will be good for trips around neighborhood but does kind of feel like, "there's the world in your face kid," not the type of protection the Britax b-agile provides, but this is a handy dandy lightweight umbrella type stroller that I feel Phoenix will cruising in well. Prob will be good summer time stroller for us. By the way I hunt daily for bottles on the street, it's like it's an Easter Egg hunt, I walked back 3 blocks to chase down that sock today, a man on his bike was parking next to it and he just about rolled over it but I snatched it up cause I love those socks!

Thursday, June 6, 2013

The Brave Cowboy: a lot more than a children's book with guns

Phoenix holding the book The Brave Cowboy in Madison Square Park recently

Honestly, even though the little boy wears a two gun holster, I really enjoyed The Brave Cowboy by Joan Walsh Anlund and plan to read it over and over to Phoenix.

The book shares black ink illustrations and in red ink the illustrations represent the boys imagination: The boy sits on a fence with a rope tied to a small bush, but how the boy sees it (shown in red ink) is he is sitting on a horse roping a bull.

The Brave Cowboy is very clever and made me have an inside giggle while reading it to Phoenix, and the creativity in this book reminds me a little of Harold & the Purple Crayon by Crockett Johnson. 

Yes, there are guns in this children's book, perhaps they are toy guns, if that makes a difference, but I personally can't imagine a brave cowboy without a gun, but let's keep in mind this book is about a boy and his cowboy dream, and let's also consider that guns are a part of American history which we can't deny.

My husband is from Texas and the boy and his two holster belt hardly phases him, but I can understand how a children's book with the main character having a two holster belt can be alarming, but the cute and charming story of this little boy with an active mind and an adventurous spirit stands out to me more in the story. It's about how you read it to your baby and what YOU make more important while reading too. The fact that the boy has a gun might be too much for you though, which is understandable in our current state of gun control.

It's up to us not to use guns to kill each other, it's up to us to make the choices we make.

Perhaps the guns themselves could have been a part of the boys imagination but the gun is not the focus of the book, it is something as a parent you will notice, for sure, but you'll be surprised how the boys imagination puts the gun itself in the background during his adventures around his house and town as a sweet helpful  and brave cowboy.  I hope you still consider this book as a fun and memorable read for your child, especially those with kids who are creative and active and always tinkering around and creating fun in their own way.

The Brave Cowboy on Amazon.com

The Brave Cowboy on BN.com


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Prom dress photo contest to win a signed copy of my YA novel Careful


My text message to Phoenix wouldn’t matter now. It was too late. Even though I sent him a “yes” an hour before, we wouldn’t be going to prom. There wasn’t even a chance that I could be saved. It was February 12th, and I was dead.  ~Estella, chapter 1 of Careful


In my YA novel Careful, the first book of the Careful, Quiet, Invisible series, Estella tragically dies in a texting and driving crash the day she tried on her prom dress with her best friends Zara, Jett and Eva. In memory of Estella I'm holding a photo contest based on the prom dresses of the main characters in the book!

Win a signed copy of Careful by submitting to the prom dress photo contest!

Contest Details:
 Did you wear white as your prom dress like Estella? Or pink like Zara or black (with sequins) like Jett or choose a purple/ plum color like Eva. Submit a pic of your prom dress that matches a character for a chance to win a signed copy of Careful. Submit your prom dress pic by email petitepride@yahoo.com or tag me in a photo on Facebook or share the image with me on Twitter.

It would be cool to get submissions for each character so I can give away 4 books!


Contest Starts Today!
Ends Tuesday June 11th 2013
Here are pins similar to the dresses the characters wore in the book.


Boston: Make way for ducklings and more!

One of the big highlights of our weekend in Boston was visiting the Public Gardens, the location where the book Make Way For Ducklings by Robert McCloskey.

I loved how the beautiful public gardens are seen in the book and you can ride the swan boats and there were even baby ducklings and it's an adorable park to bring your baby and take photos too.

Live the book!

We also enjoyed the aquarium, a whale watch tour, a trolley tour too!