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Calvin’s Birthday Bash: Day 5

slide2 editAt the moment, my son is a a language sponge.  We’re seizing the opportunity to teach him a few words in Chinese, Hebrew, French, and a few other languages as we happen upon different cultures and languages in our city.

Although word repetition is the key to learning any language, even a first language, it’s also tremendously easy to learn new words and sounds with music.

Since last week, Calvin has been singing a discernible rendition of “Row Your Boat” and “Race Car”–I can’t wait to see what song he attempts to sing for me next!

My favorite way to share multilingual songs, cultural traditions, and exotic rhythms is through the quality selections available on Putumayo Kids’ albums.  One of their highest acclaimed and award-heavy albums of all time is the 1998 release of World Playground.  It was received with such praise and popularity that they created a sophomore release a few years later entitled World Playground 2.

world playground

The original World Playground started it all…soon thereafter were releases of country-specific playground or dreamland albums.  Putumayo Kids is the go-to label for fresh and ear-pleasing music with lyrics appropriate for children, yet full of world rhythms, instruments, and production appreciated by adults.

Calvin’s favorite track: #8 Manu Chaq ~ Bongo Bon

Dr. Dolly’s favorite track: #5 Home by Barna ~ Teresa Doyle

Calvin’s Dad’s favorite track: #1 Fatou Yo ~ Touré Kunda

World Playground retails for $14.99 on Amazon.com.  A portion of Putumayo World Music’s proceeds from the sale of this album will be donated to the non-profit Putumayo Cross-Cultural Initiative.

WIN IT!

putumayo kids logoOne winner will receive a copy of Putumayo Kids’ World Playground album.

To enter, leave a comment relevant to this post before Sunday, November 5th at 11:59 p.m. (Don’t forget to follow the contest rules all generic comments are ineligible.).  At $14.99, World Playground is a wonderful gift for a birthday or just because.

For more in-the-know fun on Putumayo World Music new releases, artist interviews, and more you can follow them on Twitter, and become a Putumayo World Music fan on Facebook.

YOUR TURN:

I want to know…if you could travel with your family anywhere, what destination would you pick?

Thank you to Putumayo Kids for providing a sample copy of World Playground CD for the purpose of this review.

**UPDATE**

Congratulations to the winner, #2 Aline.

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Calvin’s Birthday Bash: Day 3

I was studying abroad in China in the late 1990’s when I first heard witnessed a breathtaking live performance of an erhu, an ancient Chinese bowed two-string instrument whose origins date back more than a thousand years.

It was breathtakingly beautiful and haunting.   You can watch a stirring erhu performance by Yu Hongmei.

Because I am half-Chinese (with some Japanese thrown in for good measure), I want our son to grow up with an appreciation for his cultural heritage through language, music, customs, and holidays.

One way to share the beauty of music and instruments from Asia is through a stellar release from Putumayo Kids: Asian Dreamland.  Lush, and peaceful lullabyes are performed with women’s (mamas’) voices and the rich orchestration of instruments from Asia.

asian dreamlandWIN IT!

putumayo kids logoOne winner will receive a copy of Putumayo Kids’ Asian Dreamland CD.

To enter, leave a comment relevant to this post before Sunday, November 5th at 11:59 p.m. (Don’t forget to follow the contest rules— all generic comments are ineligible.).  At $13.99, Asian Dreamland is perfect accompaniment for infant massage, mom and baby yoga time, or a romantic dinner for two.

For more in-the-know fun on Putumayo World Music new releases, artist interviews, and more you can follow them on Twitter, and become a Putumayo World Music fan on Facebook.

YOUR TURN:

I want to know…What kind of lullabyes do you sing (or listen to) with your child?   

Thank you to Putumayo Kids for providing a sample copy of Asian Dreamland CD for the purpose of this review.

**UPDATE**

Congrats to the winner, #5 AndreaT.

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Calvin’s Birthday Bash: Day 2 (Tuesday Travels)

tuesday-travelsWelcome to Tuesday Travels, a weekly series at Traveling with Baby.  I am excited about sharing some local day trips and field trip ideas for families with little ones.  This weekly series also features travel tips for families with kids-in-tow and related product reviews and giveaways.  I enjoy hearing about your traveling adventures, too.

In addition to Tuesday Travels, this is also the week for Calvin’s 2nd Birthday Bash!

Packing for travel with small children can get cumbersome.  Baby Safe Travel offers some fantastic travel tips for babies and toddlers. From diapers to snacks and changes of clothing, small children need a lot of stuff to get from point A to point B.  It’s comforting to little ones to have a familiar item from home when they venture to new places.

Fortunately, Zoobie Pets had traveling parents and small children in mind when they designed the versatile and lovable Zoobie pet collection.

Ellema5

A triad of warmth and amusement:

  1. It’s an imaginative and entertaining plush animal friend during playtime.
  2. It’s a squishy and cuddly pillow.
  3. It’s a warm and snuggly fleece blanket.

Ellema nap

179.catalogMy son loves his soft and cuddly Ellema Elephant.  He enjoys transforming it from a four-legged elephant to a squishy pillow with the ease of velcro.  When I help him unzip the belly to release the 34 inch x 53 inch fleece blanket, he enjoys burying underneath it for warmth.

Calvin’s Zoobie Pet is a a nap time staple–we don’t leave home without it.209.catalog

I love that it’s a well-constructed toy that’s made to last.  It’s simple to unzip the blanket for removal so that I can wash it and keep it smelling fresh.  Instead of packing 3 separate items for travel, it’s a fantastic 3-in-1 option that keeps my son entertained and comforted.

Khimba Koala and Baby KaiZoobie recently introduced a jumbo pet line that features 59 inch x 91 inch blankets, and they also have a baby pet line with smaller blankets sized 29 inches x 23 inches–great for small babies.145.catalog

You can adopt a Zoobie Pet at an official Zoobie retailer.  In Charlottesville, you can find them at Shenanigans Toy Store.  They’re also available for purchase on Amazon.com.  They retail starting at $29.99 for a regular-sized Zoobie Pet to $89.95 for the Jumbo Zoobies.

————————————————————————————————

WIN IT!

zoobie pets logoOne winner will receive a Zoobie pet of choice (excluding the jumbo Zoobies).

To enter, leave a comment stating which Zoobie pet you would choose on this post before Sunday, November 5th at 11:59 p.m. (Don’t forget to follow the contest rules all generic comments are ineligible.).  At $29.95, Zoobie pets are a great gift for baby showers or birthdays.prizeypick

For more in-the-know fun on Zoobies contests and new available pets…you can follow Zoobies on Twitter, and become a Zoobies fan on Facebook.

Thank you to Zoobies for providing an Ellema Elephant Zoobie Pet for the purpose of this review.

**UPDATE**

Congrats to the winner: #4, Rachel.

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Calvin’s Birthday Bash: Day 1

Calvin SmileI get to look at this precious face every day.  When he crinkles his nose in a smile, I can’t help but let the tensions of the day melt away as my face beams at his.

My son joins me at the office when I work three days a week.  On other days, we play together at the playground, in the back yard, or in the living room.

There is always music.

The soundtrack of our time together is full of laughter, applause, and clogging…well, at least foot-stomping.

As a nod to the year of my son’s birth, we’ve been jamming to Putumayo Kids’ 2007 release of Animal Playground.

animal playground

Picking our favorite tracks on this album wasn’t easy because there are so many marvelous musical treasures including a rip-roaring Italian version of Old MacDonald, Nella Vecchia Fattoria by Quartetto Cetra.  My heart soars from the ethereal beauty of The Littlest Birds by the Canadian band The Be Good Tanyas.  I enjoy grooving to the Latin and jazz rhythms produced with children’s voices and giggles in L’Otorhinocéros by the French group Les P’tits Loups du Jazz.

Putumayo Kids’ Animal Playground is on repeat in our CD player.  It’s the perfect album for a scenic drive, a birthday party, an afternoon of arts and crafts, or a living room dance floor.

Calvin’s favorite track: #1 Animal Crackers ~ Wee Hairy Beasties

Dr. Dolly’s favorite track: #11 Eagles ~ Terri Hendrix

Calvin’s Dad’s favorite track: #12 If A Dinosaur Was My Friend ~ Phil Melancon

The enhanced CD also includes a video for Asheba’s spirited Caribbean arrangement of the “No More Monkeys!” song.

Animal Playground retails for $14.99 on Amazon.com.  A portion of Putumayo World Music’s proceeds from the sale of this album will be donated to the Wildlife Conservation Society in support of its activities that save wildlife and wild lands.

WIN IT!

putumayo kids logoOne winner will receive a copy of Putumayo Kids’ Animal Playground album.

To enter, leave a comment relevant to this post before Sunday, November 5th at 11:59 p.m. (Don’t forget to follow the contest rules all generic comments are ineligible.).  At $14.99, Animal Playground is a wonderful gift for a birthday.prizeypick

For more in-the-know fun on Putumayo World Music new releases, artist interviews, and more you can follow them on Twitter, and become a Putumayo World Music fan on Facebook.

YOUR TURN:

I want to know…what kind of music do you enjoy together as a family?

Thank you to Putumayo Kids for providing a sample copy of Animal Playground CD for the purpose of this review.

**UPDATE**

Congrats to #13, Jill L.

Subscribe // Twitter me: drdolly