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Bringing Home Baby 

I wasn't supposed to write the editor's note for this issue. Managing editor Megan James had planned to; she's been blogging about her first pregnancy for the last four months, and had hoped to sign off here and on the blog before she delivered. Her due date wasn't until May 4, so it seemed like she had plenty of time to make our April 25 press deadline.

But babies have their own timetable. Two weeks before this issue went to press, Megan developed high blood pressure, and her doctor decided to induce labor. On April 18, she delivered Joni James Houghton, the little cutie in the photo, at Fletcher Allen Health Care. Mom, baby and Dad Daniel are all doing great.

Not only does this happy news mark the end of Megan's "Bump on a Blog" series on the Kids VT website, it also ties in to her story in this month's Baby and Maternity Issue. While she was eight months pregnant, Megan visited six of the state's hospital birthing centers and discovered what's unique about each of them. We've presented her findings in "Prepared for Arrival."

Megan's story is just one of the maternity and postnatal pieces in this issue: Tricia Kennedy offers some tips on baby wearing; Kathryn Flagg explores the food aversions and cravings of pregnant women; Dr. Lewis First gives advice on eating — and drinking — while breast-feeding; and Becky Tharp visits a sweet nursery. In "Use Your Words," proofreader Meredith Coeyman writes about how she came to terms with having a C-section after hoping for a "natural" unmedicated birth.

Beyond the baby stage? In addition to the May events calendar and our usual monthly columns, we're publishing a feature story this month that addresses the overprotective parenting trend. Many of us with older kids were intrigued by "The Overprotected Kid," Hanna Rosin's cover story about "adventure playgrounds" from the April 2014 issue of the Atlantic. Rosin focuses, in particular, on a playground in Wales called the Land that encourages "risky" play.

For our feature, Ken Picard interviewed Middlebury filmmaker Erin Davis, who's making a documentary about the Land. Picard also profiled a farm-based childcare program in Waterbury that is, in some ways, an adventure-playground equivalent for younger kids. (page 22).

Our focus is on moms this month because Mother's Day is on May 11. Don't forget to give your mom a card, hug or phone call. Motherhood is a demanding, unpredictable and ultimately rewarding gig — something Megan is no doubt just beginning to discover.

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Editor's Note

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