3 Different ways to clean a Convection Oven

 

A Convection Oven is one of the best ways to cook and bake as it uses a fan to circulate the hot air to ensure that all the exposed parts get adequate heat which makes it quicker to cook and more efficient than a regular microwave.

However, since they have such a complex design, cleaning them is not as simple and one has to be really careful while cleaning them up. A lot of newer models come with a self-cleaning feature now which makes the cleaning process even faster and simpler but for those models which still do not have this feature, one needs to be really careful.

Here are a few different ways to clean your Convection oven:

Step 1: Use the Self-Cleaning feature

One of the easiest and simplest ways to clean a Convection oven is by using the self-cleaning feature. Just follow these steps:

  1. Remove the oven racks and wash them with hot water and a liquid dish soap. You need to use an abrasive sponge to scrub the dirt out of it. If it has a lot of drips and spills, then you can soak them in a dish soap solution while your oven is cleaning itself so that the dirt loosens and you can easily wipe it away later on.
  2. Now, program your oven to a desired temperature and time and then start the self-cleaning process. Make sure the oven door is closed when it is self-cleaning itself.
  3. Stay away from the room for some time as your oven will emit immense temperature which could be harmful for you. Make sure your kids stay away from it too.
  4. Once the process is complete, take a clean rag and wipe the dirt and food particles from inside the oven.

Step 2: Use baking soda and water

First introduced by Kitchenguyd.com in their buyer’s guide, another efficient way to clean your Convection Oven is with the help of a baking soda and water.

  1. Take baking soda in a bowl and add water to it gradually to make a thick paste out of it. There is no need for an exact measurement, just pour out baking soda as you seem fit and then add water to it.
  2. Now use a spatula or a sponge and soak it in the baking soda water paste and then smear it inside the oven. Make sure you don’t cover the heating element or the oven fan with it.
  3. Now let this paste sit for a few hours and do its work.
  4. Now use an abrasive sponge to scrub your oven insides and loosen up any stuck dirt or food particles.
  5. Finally, use a damp rag and wipe down the oven from the inside out.

Step 3: Use a commercial oven cleaner solution

You can also use a commercial oven cleaner to clean your oven efficiently:

commercial oven cleaner solution

  1. Spray the inside of the oven with the cleaner solution.
  2. Then let the solution stay inside for 30 minutes so that it can loosen any stuck food or dirt particles.
  3. Finally, wipe down the oven with the help of a clean rag and make sure you have removed all the cleaner residue from it.

When the poop hits the fan: Cloth Diapering During a Natural Disaster

Before disaster strikes, it is best to have a plan in place and emergency supplies available. We all know we need bottled water, flashlights, and food, but it’s easy to forget things for our babies. Whether you use disposable or cloth diapers, you need a plan for the inevitableness that is poop!

While you can easily throw a pack of disposables into your disaster kit, you have to remember to keep updating the size because a size 1 diaper will not be used for a size 4 baby. It’s also difficult to determine how many diapers you will need because you never really know what the outcome of a disaster will be. You may find yourself unable to get to a store, and if you can, who knows if there will be any diapers left! Who wants to be having a fight over the last pack of diapers or spending time worrying if their baby is going to be stuck in a soiled diaper for extended periods of time? Certainly not something you want to be dealing with on top of the craziness of the disaster itself.

Even if you cloth diaper, modern diapers such as pockets and all-in-ones may not be ideal without electricity to wash them. What’s a mom to do then? You may be surprised to know there are lots of options open to you, including free items that you may have around your house. If you have a few covers and a Snappi, you have even more options available to you.

If you have an itty-bitty newborn around, you likely know that there are a lot of diaper changes to be made. One solution for diapering a newborn during a disaster is washcloths, and most families have quite a few around.

If you pair the washcloth diaper with the no-sew fleece diaper cover, you have a (likely free) solution for a water resistant (meaning you could still get wet if baby pees a lot) diaper.

Cloth Diapering

For an older baby, your options for emergency diapering are almost limitless. Flour sack towels, receiving blankets, t-shirts, and pretty much any other natural fabric (meaning cotton, bamboo, etc. as synthetics are usually meant to wick away moisture but not absorb) can either be folded or cut into a diaper if necessary.

If you want to prepare ahead, flour sack towels can be found at most large retailers for $1 or less per towel, and receiving blankets can be purchased for cheap at a thrift store. These options can either be folded into a diaper or folded in a “pad fold” that can be placed in a cover. You can either utilize the no-sew fleece cover above or use commercially available covers and Snappis or pins.

If you really want to plan ahead, you might consider purchasing commercially available flats or pre-folds along with covers for your emergency kit. Do keep in mind that natural fiber diapers do need to be prepped before you put them in the kit, otherwise, they may not absorb very well. These diapers are very economical and you can do all of the above folds with commercially available flats.

Now that you have diaper options, you are probably wondering what you are going to do with the poop if you have no electricity?!? After all isn’t that why disposables would be preferable since you can just throw them away? If conditions aren’t safe for you to go outside, that stinky diaper is probably the last thing you want to smell in a hothouse for days on end! With any of the types of the flat diaper, whether commercial or homemade, you can easily hand wash with a camp style washer. All you need is a bucket with a lid and a plunger. You can likely get all of this at your local home improvement store for less than $10.

I know what you are thinking. “Hand washing when I am already stressing about this disaster, you cannot be serious?” Well, I’m here to admit that I once participated in a flats and handwashing challenge for seven days for no reason than to see if I could do it. While I will admit, it was a lot of hard work; I quickly realized this was actually a useful skill to have. I was also shocked how clean those diapers got without the use of a modern washing machine!

After the diapers are washed they can be hung to dry anywhere you have a place to hang them. Shower curtain rods, towel bars, etc. all work, and since your diapers are generally only one layer of material, they dry pretty quickly.

Wipes are one other thing you need to remember when prepping for a disaster as what good is a diaper if you have no way to clean the poop off your babies bottom. Disposable wipes are one option, but you may run out. Cloth wipes are a great solution, and just like the emergency diapers above, they can be made out of many materials. Receiving blankets and old t-shirts can be cut into small squares, as can flour sack towels. Baby washcloths also make great wipes. Alternatively, there are many brands of cloth wipes for purchase. These wipes only require some water for cleaning bums and can be thrown right in with the dirty diapers for washing.

Cloth Diapering 2

Now you have all the skills and know how to diaper your little one through a hurricane, blizzard, earthquake, or zombie apocalypse.

Summary of Supplies Needed to Cloth Diaper in a Disaster for a 24-Hour Period (You’ll likely want to wash once a day to keep smells, bugs, and germs at a minimum).

  • 12 Washcloths, Flour Sack Towels, Receiving Blankets, T-Shirts, or Flats to use as diapers
  • At least 2-3 Waterproof Covers or Several Fleece No-Sew Covers
  • Snappi or Diaper Pins (optional)
  • 5-Gallon Bucket with Lid
  • Plunger
  • Laundry Detergent
  • Water
  • Towels, Washcloths, T-shirts, etc. Cut Into Squares or Premade Cloth Wipes

Small Business Saturday – November 29th

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Small Business Saturday

Come Support Local Businesses this Saturday, November 29 at EcoBaby!
10:00 Balloon Animals by Mack (Age 12)
10:15 Free Baby Signs Intro Class
10:00-12:00 Breastfeeding 911 Drop-In*
10:15-12:00 Drop-In Story Time
11:00 Free Doula Consultations with Nicky Quick
12:00 Peaceful Toileting Workshop with Katharine
1:00 Family Music Time Demo
2:00 Free Babywearing Yoga
2:00 – 4:00 Good Medicine Community Acupuncture will be doing Free Acupuncture
4:00 Essential Oils 101
5:00 Mama’s Chiropractic Clinic

Treats to purchase from The Vintage Vegan Bakery!

*This is a drop-in clinic where moms get immediate, hands-on, breastfeeding assistance from International Board Certified Lactation Consultant (IBCLC) or a Certified Lactation Counselor (CLC). Services may include a general baby assessment, having the latch observed, positioning assistance, and/or discuss any challenges or questions you have. Please note: Individual consultation appointments will be recommended or made for those needing more in-depth private assistance. This clinic is first to come, first served and the wait varies from week to week. Cost is $15 for 30 mins.

Now for the Sales!

  • $20 off in Stock Diono Carseats and 10% off Diono Accessories
  • 15% off all Toys
  • Cloth Diapers 10% off
  • 50% off all Prefolds
  • 30% off Kangaroo Shirts
  • 40% off Nursing Scarfs
  • Beco Baby Carriers 20% off
  • 20% off Hana Baby Wraps
  • 15% off Toddler Connecta Carriers
  • Diaper Bags 20% off
  • Buy One Get One Half Off Funbites
  • 15% Off Earthpaste
  • Diffusers and doTerra Oils 10% off
  • $99 In stock Strider Bikes – Sport Model
  • Additional 20% off all Clearance
  • Poppy Drops Pierce Free Earrings 50% off
Plus bring a Friends and get an extra 5% off! AND the first 15 purchases also get a free get a Shop Small Canvas bag!

Prizes!

With any purchase over $50, you can draw an instant-win prize from our Green Friday prize bowl. You’ll draw one of the following fabulous prizes:
  • $5 EcoBaby Gift Cards
  • BumGenius 4.0 Spence
  • EIO Cup
  • Cuppow Lid
  • Haba Wilde Wikinger Game
  • $25 EcoBaby & Home Gift Card – at least 3 available
  • $50 EcoBaby & Home Gift Card – one of these
  • Set of 2 wool dryer balls
  • Poppy Drop pierce-free earrings
  • Forest Nation Trees

Lets make Black Friday GREEN

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Let’s make Black Friday GREEN!

Celebrate Thanksgiving with your family, sleep in on Friday, and then shop your locally owned Natural Parenting Store. We’ll have doorbuster deals, free gifts with purchase of $50 or more, free cookies!

Doorbuster Sales

  • All pre-folds (new & used) 50% off
  • All Strider Sports Bikes $99
  • Poppy Drops Pierce Free Earrings 50% off
  • Additional 20% Clearance items
  • Funbites 15% off
  • All Toys 15% off
  • Diaper Bags 20% off
  • 40% off our remaining stock of Pirose motherhood Nursing Scarfs
  • Buy One Get One Free Baby Legs
  • 20% off Beco Baby Carriers
  • Buy One Get One Free Forest Nation Tree

Plus Bring a Friend and receive an extra 5% off your purchase! AND an FREE gift for all purchases over $50.00.

Open at the Bell Tower Shops from 10am-9pm!

Check out our Sales on Small Business Saturday too!

I want to babywear: What baby carrier is the best?

“Which carrier is my favorite?”  “Is one carrier better than all of the others?”  “Can I nurse in any baby carriers?”

I get asked these questions, and many others, quite often here at EcoBaby.

First things first.  I don’t have a favorite carrier. It honestly changes from month to month or even week to week.  I like each one for different purposes.  For instance, if I am headed to the post office or have to run into a store for something quick, I love my ring sling.  It’s so easy to just pop my two-year-old son in and out.

If I know it’s going to be a longer trip, I reach for a soft structured carrier, mei tai, or woven wrap.  How I select one depends on the mood of my son, the weather, the time I will have available to get him on and off my back, and even what it closest as I run out the door.  Yes, I have a lot of carriers, but that is because this is a passion of mine.  Some people spend their money on beer or knick-knacks, while I spend mine on cloth diapers and baby carriers.

Choosing a carrier which carrier is best for you is dependent on a few factors.  Which type of carrier is more appealing to your eye? Do you want buckles or straps?  Are you intrigued by all the different ways of wrapping and the versatility of a woven wrap?  Once you have answered those questions, try them on!  What is comfortable for me or your best friend may not fit your body type comfortably.

I feel honored to be able to work at a store where you can come into touch and try on the various styles and I love teaching classes for people with questions, or who are having difficulty making a decision.  If you don’t live in SWFL, you can always rent a carrier for two weeks and see how you feel about it.  You can also locate a local babywearing group near you to get helpful tips and advice and maybe even find someone willing to let you try on their different carriers!

Babywearing Yoga Sneak Peek!

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Here is a sneak peek at what is starting November 6 at EcoBaby & Home at the Bell Tower Shops! Let us know what you think of Babywearing Yoga! Have you done it?

Experience babywearing in a whole new way! Join Ashley and Baby Sage for a morning of baby carriers, breath, and yoga. This Parent and Baby class will be specifically tailored to babywearing parents and all poses will be done with the baby on board. This will be a fun and adventurous practice allowing us to explore the bonding relationship even further.

This is a great opportunity to check out new and different wraps and carriers, as well as spend time in community with other parents. Moms should be 6weeks postpartum (8 for cesarean) or have a doctor/midwife note to practice. Babies through walking are welcome to participate.

Ashley has been practicing yoga since 2004. When she was growing up, she was a gymnast and finds that yoga is closely related to gymnastic movement. She has practiced many forms of yoga including, Ashtanga, Iyengar, Vinyasa, Power, Prenatal and even the aerial hammock yoga.

She received her 200hr RYT from Ruby and Pearls at the end of May 2014. Her teaching style is ever evolving, alignment based and puts emphasis on having fun while harmonizing the breath, body, and mind. She encourages students to laugh and enjoy the asana practice but also stresses the importance of focus during meditation.

Ashley loves to practice arm balance and inversion in her personal practice. She loves that yoga is never perfected and there is always a new challenge.

EcoBaby’s Ultimate 2014 Gift Guide

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Shop the must-have toys and gifts of the 2014 Holiday season at EcoBaby & Home.

0-6 Months

1. HABA Magica Clutching Toy #13.95

Made of beech wood and non-toxic water-based stain this is a great colorful toy for your little one, great for teething and babies learning to grasp. It’s even fun for adults to play with!

2. Skwish $16.00

Easy for little hands to grab this sensory clutching rattle encourages grasping and reaching. Made with wood and elastic ties which allows baby to rattle, flatten and chew on and it always returns to its original shape!

3. Apple Park Organic Farm Buddies Gift Set $29.95

100% certified organic cotton, natural corn fiber filling, and environmentally friendly dyes and handmade! What is not to love? Oh, wait there is more…..All of the packagings is printed on recycled paper with soy ink, there Apple Park Farm Buddies would be a great gift for the baby in your life!

6-12 Months

1. Sophie the Giraffe $21.95

Sophie the Giraffe is a staple in any teething babies arsenal, made of 100% natural rubber and food based paint, she has been around since 1961. Definitely a great classic toy.

2. Hape Push & Pull Animals $9.95

There is a beautiful wooden push and pull toys, a classic gift that is sure to be a big hit!

3. Green Toys Stacker $14.99

8 colorful, stackable nesting pieces made in the USA from recycled milk jugs. We love the Green Toys brand because when they get dirty you can just put them in the dishwasher!

1-2 Years

1. Green Toys Race Car $8.99

Great little gift for Boys or Girls who love cars! No BPA, PVC, phthalates or external coatings! This gift is ready to roll!

2. eco-dough $19.99

A safe dough made from natural plant dyes. The kids will have hours of fun sculpting and you won’t have to worry about any harmful chemicals.

3. Haba Dolls Mirli & Miro $19.99 each

These are the sweetest little 8″ dolls. They will be a big hit for the holiday season and we love their packaging, a paint can!

3-5 Years

1. Strider Balance Bike $89-$169

Tanya loved the Strider Bike SO much we brought it into the store. This bike is the best bike to get your kids riding a bike with no training wheels! If your child can walk they can use the strider!

2. Melissa & Doug Trunki $39.99

Another great item for those parents who love to travel. Kids can be in charge of their own luggage and if they get tired of pulling it around they can sit on the Trunki and be pulled. Especially great for the kids who are old enough to walk and don’t like to be worn in a carrier through the airport!

3. Poppy Drops Earring Starter Kit (temporary earrings) $21.95

Hold off piercing those ears till they are ready to care for them on their own. These Veggie Based, pierce-free temporary tattoo jewelry and nail art will keep your kids having fun with no holes!

5+ Years

1. Goldie Blox $19.99-$29.99 (on sale 50% off)

GoldieBlox created innovative and fun toys for girls, designed to develop an early interest in engineering and confidence in problem-solving.

2. Wet Brush $11.95

Probably the best brush on the market! No more crying while brushing your child’s hair (or yours!). It really glides through so easily.

3. Mini Doll Carrier $30.00

Have a child who wants to be just like mommy or daddy and carry a little one? This is a perfect gift! Matching carriers would be even better!

Practical Gifts

1. Luca & Co Fun Pod $190.00

The Fun Pod allows your child to be right where the action is! Smaller than it’s competitors to give you more room in the kitchen or anywhere where your child likes to help.

2. Diono Rainer $339.00

Probably one of the best car seats on market and the last car seat you will have to purchase! It Rear Faces till 55 lbs and converts to a booster till 120 lbs. It’s steel frame and narrow sizing allows up to 3 comfortably in the back of most vehicles.

3. Parent/Child Baltic Amber Necklaces $45.00

Ease those teething pains for baby and mild headaches you often get and look cute all at the same time.

Moms to be/New Moms

1. Pregnancy and/or Baby Milestone Cards $26.95 each

A gift we often recommend for new moms to be to document their pregnancy or new parents to document all of their babies firsts. These are great sets that come in a keepsake box.

2. Newborn Cloth Diaper Rental $75-$120

What better way to show your support for cloth diapering to new parents than to gift them the Newborn Diaper Rental program! Newborn’s growing so quickly that it is more cost effective to rent newborn diapers, keep them for 3 months, give them back, and get a store credit to start buying one size cloth diapers!

3. Stretchy Wrap $37.95-$89.00

Stretchy Wraps are a great way to let mom or dad be attentive to the new baby and be hands-free to do simple chores around the house or be attentive to the other children in the house. This is a must for any new mom!

What do I feed my Baby!: Baby Led Weaning

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Food. This is always a hot topic among mommas once their infants reach a certain age. We hear all kinds of “helpful” advice, most of which conflicting. In fact, one common bit of advice we receive comes from our doctors and is in direct conflict with American Academy of Pediatrics and World Health Organization guidelines: start feeding infants rice cereal at three or four months of age.

Despite the prevalence of this practice, both aforementioned associations advise breastmilk, (or formula if necessary), exclusively for the first six months and then “the introduction of complementary foods” (AAP 2012). Dare I say that rice cereal doesn’t compliment anything?

I’m not here to debate the merits of this (essentially debunked) practice, but instead, introduce another approach to bring your child to the table. It’s called Baby Led Weaning and essentially, it means encouraging your child to feed themselves from the start of their eating careers.   Allowing them exposure to food through watching others and allowing them to dictate when they are ready to start experimenting themselves – typically this is around six months of age.

With BLW, babies are given “normal” food from the very get-go, cut into manageable, generally French fry-sized pieces, and therefore learning the tastes, textures, skills, and reflexes associated with food without first learning about purees (which let’s be honest, does not exactly teach them anything about how we experience food in the real world).

There are books, blogs, articles, forums, and experienced moms who will all give the-same-but-different versions of what BLW means to them. The bottom line is that the mush is skipped and the baby has some level of control over what they experience and ultimately learn. To me, the key word here is “learn.” Isn’t that the goal?

We want our children to learn about food and eating in a way that will translate into healthy and comfortable habits as they grow older. The importance of food in our lives, and the unhealthy habits held by so many people in our society right now should not be ignored.

So this is what BLW means to me.

Both my husband and I, fortunately, grew up in families which took the tradition of dinnertime very seriously. Elisa was brought to the table with us for meals almost as soon as she was born and sat next to us in the high chair starting at around three months. We’d offer her a toy and include her in our conversations. It was a practice she became used to and around seven months, she started expressing interest in our food.

I began slowly by giving her foods such as avocado, applesauce, and bananas, (to this day she will not eat them). She clearly enjoyed tasting and playing. After a few days, I moved onto slightly overcooking whatever veggies we were eating that day; I did not mash them, but they were always softer than normal. Within a week or two, I started giving her small portions of whatever was on our plate.

She wasn’t eating full meals by any stretch, I didn’t expect it and I didn’t try feeding her more. She played and she put her fingers in her mouth and experienced the flavors. Slowly, and this took months, she started eating more and more. I never pushed it and I never gave her anything which made me uncomfortable, but for example, she bit chicken off a bone when she was probably ten months old.

She ate spicy food, garlic, and all other textures and flavors. If her habits as a toddler are any indication, she has two foods she doesn’t like and has remained consistent (eggs and bananas), but otherwise, can eat nearly an adult portion at every meal. This began around 15 months.

Not only did we offer Elisa normal food, we also always gave her silverware. No, she could not operate a spoon at seven months old, but she associated it with food and always tried her best. Even still at age two, she is no expert, but she knows what utensils are for and if she is struggling with her fork, she’ll ask for a spoon to try instead. She has been able to eat a bowl of cereal or yogurt by herself since 18 months.

She has also always drunk out of a cup without a lid, (of course not walking around the house or in the car, I’m not insane). Do I think she would never have picked up these skills had I not introduced them early? Of course not. But I saw no reason not to expose her

She has also always drunk out of a cup without a lid, (of course not walking around the house or in the car, I’m not insane). Do I think she would never have picked up these skills had I not introduced them early? Of course not. But I saw no reason not to expose her to realistic food situations from the very start.

One thing I observed is that we have had no scary choking situations. In my experience, and I’ve heard this from other proponents of BLW, babies will recognize their gag reflex very early if given the opportunity. I didn’t step in when Elisa had something in her throat. She learned immediately that allowing food to go too far back into her throat caused discomfort and she figured out how to manipulate her tongue and get it out.

To her, food was always chewable so there was no transition from her having first learned that all food is mushy. From the very start, she would feel it move back on her tongue, spit it out into her hand, and put it back and try again. Watching her process was fascinating for me really because without my guidance, she recognized what needed to happen. If she put something in her mouth that was too large, she would remove it before it had a chance to roll back her tongue. If something moved back before she had a chance to chew, she’d remove it and start over.

Elisa expects now to be pulled up to a table with other people for, at the very least, one major meal per day. She requested to be taken out of the high chair and sit with us, (we have a booster) when she was just shy of a year. She eats a variety of foods and textures many adults I know aren’t exposed to. One thing I have also observed is that she will control what she eats based on her own needs. I like to make sure she eats a balanced diet through the course of a week, not just a day.

She’s eaten a full pound of green beans for dinner before without touching anything else on her plate but won’t eat a green for days after. She’s eaten two chicken breasts in a sitting but won’t touch the stuff the next day. Mornings when she has cereal or toast for breakfast, she is more likely to ask for fruit as a snack.

Overall, I’ve found that BLW made feeding and introducing food to our daughter easy. It didn’t require a transition from baby to toddler, but instead, she has just had a steady learning progression from playing to eating and now learning manners. Most importantly, she eats a balanced diet, without being forced, and is not fussy in regards to tastes, textures, or mealtimes.

Overall, I’ve found that BLW made feeding and introducing food to our daughter easy. It didn’t require a transition from baby to toddler, but instead, she has just had a steady learning progression from playing to eating and now learning manners. Most importantly, she eats a balanced diet, without being forced, and is not fussy in regards to tastes, textures, or mealtimes.

~Allison Lund