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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Episode 61 (Epilogue): Starting Solids

   The topic of tonight’s show was infant and toddler nutrition. In particular our hostesses, Ryan and Carmela, focused on starting solids. Our first guest was Eve Prang Plews, Nutrition Counselor   and WSLR mainstay. She talked with us about the importance of breast milk, if breastfeeding is possible, in a baby’s diet. While Eve encouraged listeners to breast feed solely for the first six months of life, she noted that “any is better than none, and more is better than any!” We also talked about the importance of probiotics and making sure food introductions start with children’s parents (a seasonally relevant topic when dealing with “helpful” relatives interested in feeding your baby from holiday meals.)

            Our next guest was Maggie Meade. Maggie is a mother of three who runs the amazing Wholesome Baby Food website and authored the book The Wholesome Baby Food Guide. Maggie talked to us about her passion for healthy eating, and the way in which this translate into making her own baby food for her children. Maggie and Eve joined in conversation together about introducing solids as complimentary to breast milk or formula, baby lead weaning, how to know if your child is ready to start solids, and avoiding the oft recommended first food of rice cereal.

            Finally, Eve recommended her top three foods for starting solids (carrots, sweet potatoes, and winter squashes!) and left us with a discussion of the importance of adequate nutrition of both child and mother when breastfeeding.

Birth in the News:

Episode 61: First Foods

Join the Conversation on Tuesday November 27th at 6pm, as Ryan and Carmela welcome experts in infant and toddler nutrition. Local Nutrition Counselor Eve Prang Plews will share ways we can strengthen our children's health and wellness through nutrition, while author of The Wholesome Baby Food Guide, Maggie Meade, will discuss the variety of strategies available to parents who are introducing solids.

Tune into WSLR 96.5 LPFM or online at tonight, Tuesday, November 27th at 6:00pm ET. The program will also available later in the evening via podcast at

For more information, please contact the hostesses of Maternally Yours at, or on our facebook page at

Maternally Yours,
Cheryl, Carmela, Ryan and Laura

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Episode 60 (Epilogue): Making Holidays Meaningful

The topic for tonight’s show was focused on decommercializing the holidays and making holidays meaningful. Co-hostesses Ryan and Cheryl started the discussion with activities and traditions that they participate in to make their own holidays meaningful, such as buying only local on Black Friday, hosting a large potluck with many, many friends, and putting more attention on being around the people they love.

We then talked to Amy Bowers, who blogs as  Mama Scout, and  is currently offering her own e-lab (an online course) about making the holidays meaningful. Amy shared with us tips for the holidays, such as not overextending one’s self, treating traditions as fluid and organic, and allowing new holiday experiences in favor of forcing old traditions. She also stressed the importance of buying local as a great way to remove some of the commercialized aspects of holidays, especially for individuals who are not as gifted or don’t have as much time to dedicate to crafting. As Cheryl noted, Amy gave us lots of great suggestions for “making holidays more full by making them a little more empty.”

The show ended with our co-hostesses sharing listener submissions of their favorite holiday traditions. The ideas ranged from making no-sew fleece blankets to give out to the cold or homeless on outings around town, selecting only four gifts for each loved one on a “want, need, wear, read” basis , and celebrating relaxing family time together by doing a Thanksgiving breakfast in bed.

We want to wish all of our listeners a happy holiday season, and express our gratitude to you for all your support during this time of thanks. We hope that however you choose to celebrate this season is full of great memories and lots of love.

Mama Scout  (features links to e-labs)

Ergle Christmas Tree Farm
A great, listener suggested farm in Dade City to choose a  Christmas tree and cut it down yourself

Simple Mom- 6 steps to a relaxed christmas
For our listeners celebrating a religious Christmas

Links to our “Birth in the News” stories:
Similac for Moms

World Heaviest Triplets

Episode 60: Making Holidays Meaningful

Join the Conversation tonight, Tuesday November 20th at 6pm, as Cheryl and Ryan talk about making holidays more meaningful by SIMPLIFYING! We'll be joined on the air by Mama Scout, who is a blogger, mama, and simple holiday specialist! We also want to feature YOU: our local community and listeners. Send us an email and let us know what do you do to simplify, de-commercialize, and focus on the most important things in your family in this holiday season.

Tune into WSLR 96.5 LPFM or online at tonight, Tuesday, November 20th at 6:00pm ET. The program will also available later in the evening via podcast at

For more information, please contact the hostesses of Maternally Yours at, or on our facebook page at

Maternally Yours,
Cheryl, Carmela, Ryan and Laura

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Episode 59 (Epilogue): Gentle Discipline

The topic of tonight’s show was gentle discipline, something which can be a daily struggle for parents to do properly. We were joined in studio by two guests, Karen Leonetti and Peg Hughes. Karen  is a preschool teacher who runs Earth Angel Eco-Green Preschool in Sarasota, and is currently finishing her children’s book The Magically Delicious Rainbow Garden.  Peg is a Licensed Clinical Social Worker with a concentration in family and child therapy, who also facilitates parenting workshops.
We first talked to Karen, who began her discussion with the three biggest triggers for childhood crankiness: being wet, tired, and hungry. She emphasized the importance of pre-planning for these events. We also talked with Karen about how to ease the difficulty of everyday transitions, such as the ride to and from school. Karen then stressed the significance of avoiding labeling children, avoiding phrases like “good girl” or “bad girl,” which may essentialize children to their actions and avoid any gains from more in-depth understanding. Kim also gave some tips on how to redirect unwanted behavior and setting children up for success throughout the day.
We then brought Peg into the conversation, who was inspired by the Love and Logic family of parenting resources. Peg highlighted the need for parents to consider the role that their own behavior plays in how children act. She urged parents to make sure that their relationships with their children were based on respect and love, and to bring positive energy into their interactions. She discussed a four prong approach to gentle parenting: making sure children preserve their self-concept, making sure they share in thinking, making sure they share the control, and delivering empathy  and consequences. She emphasized the need for parents to not take action s of children personally when they are not meant to be, and  shared  techniques for allowing children to solve their own problems.
Finally we opened our guests up to questions, and they shared with us ways to help children sit through meal time, tips for managing  phone usage and phone interruptions,  ways to help stop behaviors like biting, and how to deal with sibling rivalry.
We want to remind our listeners that Peg will be offering a workshop about staying involved with your child’s education on  Wednesday,  11/14 from 6-8 pm and  Thrusday, 11/15 from 9:30-11:30am. More information about locations and RSVP info here!

Episode 59: Gentle Discipline

Join the Conversation tonight, Tuesday November 13th at 6pm, as Laura and Ryan
welcome local child development experts Karen Leonetti and Peg Hughes to talk about Gentle Discipline. Learn tricks and tips for redirecting unwanted behavior--both theirs AND yours--and for keeping the Big Picture in mind.

Tune into WSLR 96.5 LPFM or online at tonight, Tuesday, November 13th at 6:00pm ET. The program will also available later in the evening via podcast at

For more information, please contact the hostesses of Maternally Yours at, or on our facebook page at

Maternally Yours,
Cheryl, Carmela, Ryan and Laura

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Episode 58 (Epilogue): Children and Nature

Tonight’s show focused on the importance of the relationship between children and nature, the ways in which many children in our country are disconnected from nature, and what parents can do to foster a greater connection with nature in their children. We remind listeners that tonight’s show is an interactive episode, and that next week, Tuesday November 13th at 6:30 PM, we will be showing Mother Nature’s Child- Growing Outdoors in the Media Age, as part of WSLRs “Let’s Talk Series.”

Our guests tonight were Tim Seldin, Lourna McGrath , and Liz Sniegocki . Tim Seldin is the President of the Montessori Foundation  and Chair of the International Montessori Council, with almost 40 years of experience as a Montessori educator. Lourna McGrath has been working the educational field since 1974, and has been a Montessori teacher since 1991. Lourna is currently the Associate Head of the New Gate School. Liz is a freelance writer and advocate of natural and mindful living, including on her own blog Natural Nester. Liz also teaches a creative workshop for adults called “Keeping a Nature Journal- Journaling  through the Seasons.”  

We first spoke to Tim and Lourna about their careers in education and the changes which have taken place in children’s connection to nature both inside of and outside of their educational lives. Lourna discussed a cultural fear of letting kids go out on their own, and the huge change that this has caused in the way that children play and go outside.  Both Tim and Lourna talked with us about the ways in which nature has been removed from most children’s education, especially with growing focus on standardized testing and the heavy structuring of children’s schedule through planned extra circulars. We discussed the issues between free play and structured physical activities, highlighting children’s need not just to be outside in nature, but also to relinquish some of the constant supervision and structure.  Lourna discussed children’s need to down time, in order to process their days and relax without expectation, something which she noted is becoming more difficult with over scheduling. Tim also discussed the need for complex relationships, highlighting the way in which planned extra circulars and a reliance of technological communication outside of school and these activities fosters superficial relationships among children.

            The guests also offered some suggestions for how to help children foster a greater connection with nature. Lourna discussed the importance of allowing nature back into schools, highlight the importance of projects like containers gardens and bird watching in urban areas where educators may not feel like they can provide “nature.” She also focused on the need for parents to get out and do thing with their children. Tim suggested Earth Box, a ready to go gardening systems, recommended the book The After Dinner Gardening Book and extoled the virtues teaching children to grow some of their own food. He also suggested that parents take their children to buy food, particularly from places like farms and farmers markets, to teach children about where good come from. Finally he suggested family “nature museums” where parents encourage children to learn about nature with them in order to spend more time in and connect with nature.

            Next Liz talked to us about her own experiences with nature as a child, and the importance that it had to her growing up. Liz emphasized the importance that leading by example has when raising her own children, and the importance of being active and sharing individual passions with children. Our guests also emphasized the importance of not forcing children to grow up to fast, including separating children from media in order to remove pressure due to rigid media images and also to promote healthy development. Tim noted that while directing children away from media overstimulation may be difficult, it is necessary. Liz and Tim highlighted the importance of limits on media, and Liz discussed the ways in which setting these limits early and providing outdoor opportunities makes this process easier for parents. Lourna highlighted the fact the being against inappropriate and overextended uses of technology does not mean being against technology as a whole, an important fact for parents to remember.  Cheryl discussed the importance of trusting your children and removing unnecessary fear so that children can play more freely. All the guests also argued from the importance of connecting children to nature so that they can realize the importance of taking care of our planet.

            Liz talked to us about her nature class, and the importance of fostering parents connection to nature so that they can better do so for their own children. She talked about the act of journaling with children, encouraging them to use their sense to begin journaling and to help them connect to larger question that children may have about the environment around them. Liz also talked about her own families celebration of different seasons, and how this helps them to connect to nature and the yearly changes that go on within nature. Lourna discussed some of the ways in which her school helps children to connect to nature, including the utilization of a nature cabinet and the practice of flower dissection in order to directly teach children about nature. 

The Nature Conservancy's Nature Rocks program aims to inspire and empower families to play and explore in nature. Our mission is to make it easy for you to have fun in nature, and connect with others to do the same. We want all families to see for themselves how much Nature Rocks. Your kids will be happier, healthier and smarter, and besides, it is generally free and a rockin’ way to create and share fun quality family time. To check out the program, visit www.NatureRocks.ORG there you will find a variety of fabulous resources, like their free downloadable PDF of seasonal Nature Activities, searchable activities by age and location area, events, and local places to find nature. They also have amazing extras… anything from a treasure hunt to nature photography tips.