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Parents Pitch Products at White House’s First Demo Day

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So…we all know parents rock and some rock so much that they step in to fill a void and need among fellow parents by inventing some amazing and wonderful life-saving services, gadgets, contraption and tools.

A few of said innovative parents got a chance to show off their services and products yesterday at the First Ever White House Demo Day  on August 4, which was also on the birthday of US President Barack Obama.

Bellyitch’s founder JJ was on hand to witness and record the President go around the exhibits set up in in the State Room of the White House and hear presentations from a selection of about 30 startups and entrepreneurs.

Earlier these brilliant minds were among  small business owners who  had taken part of a two-day session that included round tables and meetings with Senior White House officials, venture capitalists, government leaders and business mentors.

Products for and by parents presented that day included:

Husband and wife duo develop technology to help libraries boost kids’ summer reading

(Felix Lloyd and Jordan Lloyd-Bookey, Arlington, Virginia) Entrepreneurs and husband-and wife-team Felix Lloyd and Jordan Lloyd Bookey founded Zoobean to help libraries use technology to better serve their communities. Their latest product, Beanstack, provides families with learning tips, tools to log reading sessions, book and app recommendations and special badges tied to local library programs and goals.  Jordan is the former Head of Google’s K-12 Education Outreach team. Felix is a serial entrepreneur whose first venture, MoneyIsland was acquired by BancVue.

Smart baby monitor can track a baby’s vital signs using only a video camera (Rubi Sanchez, San Francisco, California) Rubi Sanchez, the founder and CEO of Wearless Tech Inc., is a graduate of the University of California—Berkeley with experience in the health care industry. Her company has developed Cocoon Cam, a patent-pending solution that uses computer vision and cloud-based data analytics to transform the capabilities of a traditional baby monitor. Using their unique software, a digital video camera, and non-invasive infrared technology, Cocoon Cam can track a baby’s heart rate, respiration, and skin temperature from a distance. Parents can stream video and wellness information to their smartphone to know exactly what is going on with their baby’s health at any time.  The Cocoon Cam team was trained through the National Science Foundation’s Innovation Corps (I-Corps) program.

Working mom of two turns family handmade popcorn tradition into snack food startup

(Jean Arnold, San Francisco, California) Jean Arnold grew up loving the fresh popcorn her mother would cook using a hand-cranked stove-top popper. As an adult, she spent years experimenting with making her own organic popcorn and flavoring it with exotic seasonings inspired by her training at Le Cordon Bleu in London. Now, as the founder of 479°, Arnold has turned her love of popcorn into a gourmet snack business that is sold around the country.

I also caught a cute moment during a pitch by Co-Founders Aaron Horowitz and Hannah Chung, both who have had experiences with juvenile diabetes. They explained how their inventive teddy bear called Jerry works.  Jerry is stuffed with educational apps to help children develop healthy behaviors related to a condition they may be dealing with or generally nutrition, exercise, sleep, and mindfulness.

JJ captured the moment for a LIVE Periscope stream and uploaded on her YouTube channel where you’ll find other videos from the event:

 

 

 

Good stuff and it was pretty cool to be in the audience at the East Room to watch it all go down and to interview some of the exhibitors after the president’s remarks.

 

Writer suggests society bans ‘Bump Watch’

Jennifer-Lopez-Absence-in-2014-World-Cup-Ceremony

In 2007, I wrote a blog post about the “Bump Watch” phenomenon, generally, discussing it in context of when the tabloids, public and media are wrong. In 2010, I wrote about how Jennifer Aniston is the most bump watched female celebrity even though she’s never been pregnant. At the same time, I was one of the early blogs that speculated in a post as to whether Jennifer Lopez was pregnant given her choice of dress during a concert. (I was right).

I am in that space so I get the fascination. And we here at Bellyitch have a long-standing ongoing “bump watch” tradition of following and covering celebrity preganancies.

I do, also, recognize that people hate the term “bump watch” as well as “bump” and “baby bump.”  It’s cool. No scene.

However, I think writer Rachel Kramer Bussel was going a weeee bit too far in her recent Salon commentary where she called bump watch anti-feminist and suggested we, as a society, should ban bump watch.

*Clutch the pearls!*

Bussel’s piece was a bit rambling and read like a stream of consciousness rant but I understand her thesis:  the incessant watching of and obsession over a woman’s pooch is offensive and reductive of her value to society outside of procreating.

In her post, Bussel bemoans how insulting it is when women are asked if they are pregnant when they may have just had one too many chicken wings the night before.

I can dig it, right.  I support women’s liberation and rights. I am a woman after all and I do and have benefited from all the work that my feminist and womanist sisters have done over the years.

Notwithstanding all of that…. I still think Bussel goes overboard in her rant.

I dunno. Head over to Salon and have a read and let me know your thoughts.

 

These are the Top 10 Companies to Work for to get Generous Paternity Leave

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Unlike progressive nations like Sweden, the United States doesn’t have federally mandated paternity leave for employers. Only 12 percent of US companies offer it.

Given that Bellyitch is an online digital blog and eMagazine and a proud member of Team Internet, we were quite elated to see that 5 of the top 10 companies with generous paternal leave as identified by TakePart are tech companies:

Change.org tops the list at #1 with its 18 weeks paternity leave offering.

Coming in behind the online petitioning site at #2 is Reddit which offers 17 weeks for birth and adoptive dads.

Facebook is number 3 on the list and it extends its leave policy to contractors as well as employers. Sweet!

Number 5 on the list is Twitter which also has a support group for new and future dads. Imagine!

Finally, rounding up tech companies on the top 5 is Google, which at #7 on the list, offers 12 weeks if Dad is the primary caregiver and then throws in an additional 5 weeks for adoptive and surrogate parents.

Awesome!

dad with baby

The other ten companies on the list are: Bank of America (#3), eco-friendly retailer Patagonia (#4),  international US-based law firm Arnold and Porter (#8), Swiss health firm Roche International‘s US offices (#9); and business management consultants Ernst & Young. (#10)

Read more details here: http://ow.ly/OHhiT

Brenda Song clears up ancient pregnancy rumors, her ex Trace Cyrus claps back

Post break up with long time beau Trace Cyrus, actress Brenda Song is clearing up a pregnancy rumor that even Bellyitch reported.

In an Instagram message (that has since been deleted), Song responds to the years-old rumors:
“I usually never speak of my personal life, but I’d like to clear up some rumors. A few years ago there were rumors that I was pregnant and/or had a miscarriage. I just want to say that those rumors were not true. They were just lies and fabrications. I apologize for not clearing this up sooner and for the continual damafe (sic) that these lies have caused @TraceCyrus.”
She continued, “We may no longer be together but I hope he can forgive me and I wish him nothing but the best.”
Not good enough for the rocker brother of Miley Cyrus who broke up with Song in the summer of 2012. He clapped back to her post:
“Yes they were lies THAT U MADE UP and told me, my entire family and all our friends.” 
Um….
Well..we in the blogsphere had reason from Song to believe she was pregnant too.
On Wednesday, October 12, 2011, the Disney Channel child star tweeted to her fans after getting engaged to Cyrus, ” I won’t be tweeting so much these next couple of days! My stomach is full of excitement! Big plans..big plans. You’ll soon see ya’ll! xo BS.”
So…

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Gwen Stefani takes DC for Earth Day & poverty awareness concert

Our Bellyitch alum Gwen Stefani  reunited and joined her old bandmates from No Doubt to performs at the Global Citizen 2015 Earth Day to end extreme poverty and solve climate change on National Mall in Washington, DC on April 18, 2015 in Washington, DC.

Also performing at the free concert before hundreds of thousands in the crowd were: Usher, Chris Martin and Coldplay, Will.i.am, Common, the Mayor of DC Muriel Bowser, UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon, World Bank President Jim Yong Kim, International Monetary Fund Managing Director Christine Lagarde.

Mary J. Blige

Chris Martin and Coldplay performed as well
Usher and Common

Will.i.am. 

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Get Hilaria Baldwin’s Isabella Oliver T-Shirt Maternity Dress

Mom-to-be yoga instructor and celebrity trainer Hilaria Baldwin loves Isabella Oliver. The gorgeous mom to 1 1/2 year old daughter Carmen Gabriela with husband actor Alec Baldwin. She’s been seen sporting the comfy yet stylish brand of maternity dresses at red carpet events, while out and about and other occasions. It’s a much loved brand of Bellyitch as well.

You can cop this elegant and forgiving Ruched T-Shirt Maternity dress for $159 and can wear it in a more formal setting as Hilaria is seen wearing at a March 10 charity event, the 6th Annual Bent On Learning Inspire! Gala at Capitale in New York City.

Check back in on this post later because I am going to see if I can score my readers a discount on this dress.

photo: Getty

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National Infertility Awareness Week: Enter to Win FertilityBlend ($39.99)

For National Infertility Awareness Week, Daily Wellness, makers of FertilityBlend , the first nutritional product to synergistically combine key natural ingredients to prime the body for conception, is offering three Bellyitch readers a chance to win a bottle of its formulas (tailored to the different needs of men and women.)
According to the makers: 
FertilityBlend For Women and FertilityBlend For Men were developed based on published scientific literature on nutritional components that benefit fertility and have a safe history of usage. In studies conducted with Stanford University Medical School, each formula has shown excellent results in both efficacy and safety.
Key ingredients in FertilityBlend For Women: Chasteberry (natural herb that supports good hormone balance and normal ovulation);  L-arginine (amino acid that helps maintain healthy uterine lining) and Green tea, vitamin E, and selenium (antioxidants that help enhance reproductive health by repairing oxidative damage due to aging and environmental toxins)
Key ingredients in FertilityBlend For Men: L-carnitine (amino acid that has been shown to be critical to the formation of healthy sperm);Vitamins C and E, green tea and selenium (all potent antioxidants that help improve sperm counts and quality)
OPEN until April 30. US ONLY

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Happy New Year: Bellyitch Blog 2013 Year in Review

We had quite the productive year here at Bellyitch in 2013.
Celebrity Pregnancy

Trends


This year marked some of the most anticipated pregnancies of

a long while, in particular, that of Duchess Catherine of Cambridge, the

former Kate Middleton and her husband Prince William.
Up until confirmation

of the pregnancy  in December 2012, she

was among the list of celebrities who were constantly

falsely reported
in the media as being pregnant. (Jennifer Aniston still

holds the distinction of being the most pregnant in the media).
Shortly following that announcement, in

February,  Fergie
, another celebrity often

accused of being pregnant
when ever she eats too much sushi and wears a tight

shirt to the paparazzi-infested Grove, announced her pregnancy. Thank goodness. Enough false reports.
But no other celebrity caused as much furor than Kim

Kardashian
, the American reality-TV star, actress and business woman who many

love to hate. She still boasts the most fans (including hater fans) and is widely adored along with the rest of her Kardashian

family clan.
This year was also the year of the America’s Next Top Model

pregnancies. Cycle 3 finalist YaYa

DeCosta Alafia
, and winner Eva

(Pigford) Marcille
; Cycle 4’s

Cassandra Jean
and Cycle 5 contestant and All Star winner Lisa

D’Amato
were all pregnant with their first child each.
Record Reviews and

Giveaways


This year, we continued to do reviews and previews of

various apps, products and movies, including some up and coming and

enterprising companies. We love showcasing and highlighting mom and dad

inventors and started companies as we all know parents are THE best for solving

problems parents face.  The

iiamo- Go
self-heating bottles
, the muzio

 life-sharing App
and the

uh-Oh
I’m lost bracelets
 and smaller

companies like

iSeeMe
were among our favorites.
We also showcased some new products and productions from major established

brands and companies like Graco,  Kodak,

Relativity

Media
 movie
producers of Safe Haven, Mega

Bloks
,  Lansinoh

Labs
,  20th Century Fox creators

and distributors of Walking

With Dinosaurs
 and others.
Finally, tonight, we release our biennial report of the top

100 maternity and baby products, The Bellyitch 100.
We’re excited for the New Year to bring you more new and

exciting features, stories, reviews and celebrity updates and news!
Here’s to the Future
In 2014, we also hope to launch our innovative Bellyitch

App
, which we hope to be a useful tool for soon-to-be parents, especially first

time ones!
Also, look for the  coffee table book version of our Bellyitch 100

eBook.




We promise to use the new year to begin bringing our readers

more exclusive interviews with celebrities and other pregnancy, maternity and

children health industry experts.
Thanks for being loyal readers of the blog. We wish  you great health, prosperity and plenty

beautiful babies in the new year!

CHEERS!
HAPPY NEW YEAR!

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