Toddler

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    Uh-oh. A new toy on the market has some parents all bent out of shape, all because it's anatomically correct, which is, you know -- scandalous!

    The Toys R' Us doll has a penis and is part of the You & Me Mommy Change My Diaper doll collection. And since the thing went on sale, Facebook has been blowing up with comments from parents who are deeming the doll to be "inappropriate" and "unnecessary."

    Did I mention it also cries when its underpants are wet?

    Yep. This thing is just about as realistic as plastic babies can possibly get.

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    Rice is a favorite material for sensory play at our house. Not only is it easy to set up and clean up, but a batch of colored rice also lasts for years. The bright colors are so inviting, and making your own colored rice in any colors you choose is such an easy process that even a toddler can help.

    Here's how to easily color rice for a beautiful rice sensory bin

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    I've been bracing myself ever since my mommy friends warned me it would happen. "It" being toddler masturbation. Sooner or later, my daughter may discover a certain part of her body that, well, feels good to touch. "My son's hand is jammed down his pants non-stop!" confessed one of my friends. "Mine humps the car seat -- so embarrassing!" admits another.

    No matter how comfortable we adults are with our own sexuality, toddler masturbation is bound to make us uncomfortable. Still, since sitting there tongue-tied isn't the answer, here's a primer on how to navigate through this awkward conversation without giving your kids a hangup that'll haunt them later in life.

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    It's not uncommon to hear that a whole airplane full of people were annoyed by one child, but what happened recently on a Delta flight was icky enough to make international headlines. Aboard a flight from Beijing to Detroit last week, a Chinese child proceeded to do his business right out on his plane seat -- albeit on top of newspaper that his parents laid down for him.

    Apparently, passengers and the flight attendant asked the parents to bring the child to the restroom, but the kid's grandpa insisted that he go at his seat. Eek. Clearly, it was an uncomfortable situation for everyone present!

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    Parents have faced the age-old challenge of coaxing their kiddos to eat their vegetables in so many different ways. We've hoped for years that promises of Popeye-like strength if they eat their greens will do the trick, but believe it or not, that may be exactly what's turning children against the nutrient-packed food group. A recent study published in the Journal of Consumer Research found that kids may be more likely to eat their fruits and veggies if they don't know how good they are for them. In other words, ignorance is bliss.

    Researchers from the Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University and the University of Chicago Booth School of Business found that when food is presented to kids aged 3 to 5 as making them strong or as a tool to help them reach a goal (like learning how to read or count), they were more likely to decide that the food wasn't tasty. In turn, they would eat less of it.

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    Be honest here, people. How many times have you taken a flight only to find yourself sitting next to a wired 3-year-old who insists on kicking you for the duration of the trip? I'm raising my hand here. And parents, do you ever wish that vacation time could actually start on the plane? Maybe you'd be able to relax in your seat and enjoy the flight without having to supervise the kids. Well, our wishes may have finally been granted because Richard Branson wants to start "kids class" cabins on airplanes!

    Let's all take a minute to rejoice. The way we travel could be changed forever. Thank you, Virgin Airlines.

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    Like most moms, I'd heard about postpartum depression, and was relieved when -- aside from a few weepy moments following the birth of my daughter -- it appeared I'd been spared. Yet a new study argues that even though my daughter is now four, the spectre of postpartum depression isn't long gone, but more imminent than ever.

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    Kids will be kids, especially when they're toddlers, and they don't really know any better than to be narcissistic little buggers! That's just who they are at that age! And most of us can accept that ... But apparently, doughnut store owners in Monroe, Connecticut, don't.

    The Doughnut Inn is making headlines after a customer named Rebecca Denham says her 4-year-old son, Justin Otero, asked a woman at the shop if she had a baby in her belly. When the woman said, "No," Otero apologized, and Denham said she responded with a mortified, "Oh my goodness, I'm so embarrassed, I'm so sorry!" The woman reportedly shrugged it off, but the managers of the shop didn't take it so lightly. When Denham and her son returned on Tuesday morning, they were asked to leave. Denham says she was told that her son's 'not allowed in here.' The explanation: "He's rude." Yes, the doughnut shop BANNED the little boy.

    What ... in ... the world?!

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    Excited to go watch Megan Fox on the big screen in Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles this summer? Savor the moment. You won't get that many.

    Fox grew up with a crush on Michelangelo and took a dream role as April O'Neil in one of the season's most highly anticipated movies. But her favorite role these days is being mom to toddler Noah and infant Bodhi, and as she told The Stir -- acting is a very distant second ... even when she's covered in pee.

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    When you hear vaccine advocacy, what's the first thing that comes to mind? A doctor in a white coat? A scientist with a microscope? How about a couple of moms, fighting for kids across America?

    Karen Ernst is one of those moms, and with partner Ashley Shelby, she has helped turn Voices for Vaccines, a fledgling website about infectious diseases, into the number one source for parents looking to fight anti-vaccine fear-mongering. With a scientific advisory board that includes world renowned pediatrician Dr. Paul Offit, they're an arm of the Task Force for Global Health that's completely parent-driven ... and completely parent-focused.

    The Stir asked Ernst, a mother of three from Minnesota, why she thinks every mom in America needs to announce to her family and friends when she gets her kids vaccinated -- and how to deal with anti-vaccine rhetoric.

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