Beware Dangerous Fruit Snacks

Fruit snacks are a staple in our house. The 5th food group. The top of the food pyramid.

Trying to get the kids to school on time? Fruit snacks. Need to calm down a cranky kid at the store? Fruit snacks.

I have fruit snacks stashed in the car, in coat pockets, and any other place I may need them. We buy fruit snacks by the truckload at Costco.

But I guess I’ve never actually read what’s on the box until now. Apparently, fruit snacks are dangerous and should only be fed to seated, supervised children. Well, when does that happen?


And, apparently they also contain Carnauba Wax. That doesn’t sound very good for them.

Zhu Zhu Pet Recall Is A Scam?

zhuI have yet to see one of these things, or have one of my kids ask for one, but Zhu Zhu Pets are the undisputed hot toy of the year.? They are flying off the shelves like Cabbage Patch dolls and Rubik’s Cube back in my day.

Now, there is talk of a safety concern about Zhu Zhu Pets.? And there is even a rumor that there may be a recall of Zhu Zhu Pets soon.? Right before Christmas!

Well, SuburbanDaddy has his own theory about this brewing scandal.? You know how I love a good controversy or conspiracy theory.

We all know how crazed parents can get during the holidays, trying to find a sold out toy to give their kids for Christmas or Hanukkah.? Politely give up your parking space at the toy store?? Are you kidding?? That’s one more person who will get to the toys before you.? There was a movie made about just this scenario with Arnold Schwarzenegger called Jingle All The Way.

That’s why I’m thinking there is a crazed parent behind all this talk of a recall and unsafe toys.? What better way for a parent to be able to find a Zhu Zhu Pet than to start a rumor about a recall?? All of a sudden there will be parents trying to unload their toys before Christmas faster than the executives at Enron dumped their company stock.

It’s brilliant.

Are Baby Einstein Videos Educational?

Every parent knows about Baby Einstein videos.? The company was started in the 1990’s by Julie Clark.? They combine classical music, colors, moving images, and babies are mesmerized by them.

The videos started out very low budget.? In the early ones you can see the operators hands working the toys.? Eventually, the company was bought by Disney and the new ones have more animated characters and video effects.? There was always an underlying premise, even if it wasn’t explicitly stated, that these videos were educational, or at least, that it was better for a child than other television shows.

Well, Baby Einstein has been in the news recently and it’s been causing a bit of a stir.? And you know how much SuburbanDaddy loves a good controversy :-)

Under pressure from parent activists, Disney issued an “upgrade” policy that allows anyone who purchased Baby Einstein DVD’s between 2004 and 2009, to exchange it for a book, music CD, or $15.99.

There are so many crazy parts to this I don’t know where to begin.? First, how could anyone really believe, despite what a marketing message may suggest, that watching these videos could somehow be educational or beneficial to a child?? I mean, is anyone really surprised by Disney’s implicit admission they may have misled consumers.? What?!!? A company trying to sell its products made them sound good?

Everyone knows watching television isn’t the best use of a baby’s time.? But we still do it because, while it may not be as educational as Baby Einstein would want us to believe, it also isn’t quite as harmful as activists warn.? Plus TV is very helpful when you need a few minutes of calm.? I know many kids who watched a lot of TV (me included) that turned into perfectly well adjusted, functioning members of society.

But this is what really gets me.? The videos, at least the early ones, are nothing more than recordings of actual baby toys.? So a baby is seeing the exact same thing as if they were sitting next to the toy, except the toy is on the television instead of in person.? I don’t hear anyone calling for removal of these toys.? It’s like saying watching football is ok in person, but if you watch the exact same game on a television, somehow that becomes harmful.

Where do you stand on this important matter?

Did Motrin Go Too Far?

Have you heard all the controversy over this Motrin ad?? Motrin is trying to appeal to moms by making a case that wearing your baby, in slings and carriers, hurts your back, so you should use Motrin.? There has been a huge outcry from baby wearing groups, moms, and doctors.? To the point where Motrin had to take down the ads and post an apology on their website.

Too much?? I don’t know.? Maybe the ad goes a little over the line.? But I watched it, and if you ask me, the tone is firmly tongue in cheek.? After all, they’re trying to sell pain medicine, not make a statement about baby wearing. I have used a baby carrier many times, and sometimes, it actually does hurt my back.

Motrin had to know this would cause a bit of controversy.? That’s probably why they did it in the first place.? Issue an apology, get lots and lots of free press.

Or maybe they had no clue they would get this reaction.? If that’s the case, look out.? The last thing you want is to piss off a bunch of moms.? Especially ones that have recently had babies and are probably hormonal.

Uh oh, I apologize.? I shouldn’t have made that insensitive remark about new moms.? The last thing I want to do is start a controversy ;-)


Recall Antibacterial Soap?

I wouldn’t be surprised if this is the next class of products to be infected with recall-itis. Studies have shown that antibacterial soap is no better than regular soap and water when it comes to stopping bacterial growth. And, they could lead to super germs that are resistant to antibiotics.

A ban on antibacterial products would be huge. But what I’m more concerned about are these super germs. We have every antibacterial product you could imagine – soaps, wipes, toys – so my house is probably ground zero for super germs.

Read more on super germs…

Ridiculous Recall: Water Shoes Slippery When Wet

Here’s another in the category of ridiculous product recalls. H&M stores voluntarily stopped selling a pair of water shoes because, get this, water makes them slippery. There have been no reports of injuries but H&M felt compelled to remove them anyway.

slippery shoes

Want to make some easy money? Get a pair of these shoes, run outside when it’s raining, and then sue H&M for big bucks for not telling you water makes the ground slippery.

Bumbo Chair Recall. Are We Going Too Far?

News yesterday of yet another child product recall, this time for the Bumbo chair. We’ve used the Bumbo chair for years and it is a great product. It allows babies to sit up before they can do it themselves. Thing 3 loves to sit in his Bumbo and watch his brothers play. It’s like he’s one of the big boys.

The reason for the recall is not due to some product defect. Rather, it is due to misuse, and frankly, lack of common sense on the part of some parents. While the Bumbo is good for keeping babies “stuck” in the chair, it isn’t fool proof, and babies can sometimes get loose. It clearly says this when you buy the product. Not to make light of serious injuries which have occurred, but it seems obvious not to put a Bumbo on a table or counter, or anywhere the baby could get hurt if he falls out. If you put the Bumbo on a carpeted floor, the baby won’t get hurt when he falls out.

So the company will now put large warning labels on the Bumbo, saying not to place on surfaces where the baby would get hurt if he falls out. They even published a gallery of videos showing safe use of the Bumbo. Isn’t this a little extreme? I mean, do parents really need to be told not to do stupid things? Should soccer balls come with a warning not to play with them near traffic? Should bikes come with a warning that you can fall off them? There aren’t any toys which, if misused, can’t cause some harm. Do parents really need to be warned about every one?