Babies understand signs and symbols long before they are able to communicate.  Sign language is an amazing way to foster babies’ development and lesson frustration – many parents find that the “terrible twos” are not so terrible when babies have sign language as a way to express their needs (and understand yours!). Research shows that hearing children who have been taught some signing have improved reading ability, greater/earlier spoken vocabulary development, and even higher IQs than children who were not taught to sign.

Instructor Stephannie Moore is a Certified Instructor of Baby Signing Time, an amazingly interactive system that teaches ASL (American Sign Language) to babies aged 3 to 36 months through songs and play.  More info about the Signing Time system is found at:  The method can be started as early as 3 months, and many see their babies begin signing as early as 6-10 months.  Indigo Forest is proud to host both group and individual classes, enrolling now for Fall classes.

First series begins Saturday, September 24th, 2011.  4:00 – 4:45 pm, $15/class for child and all the family members they want to bring!   8 Class series.

Amethyst Mother Load!

We’ve just returned from the Gem Show with over 60# of beautiful amethyst cluster formations. Indigo Forest’s goals include making parenting & healthy lives easier, and what better way than to bring a beautiful bit of nature into your life?  Priced well below gem store rates ($1.99-15.99) – this week during Ann Arbor’s Art Fair  is your chance to pick out something very special for you, your family or home.

Below are some of the characteristics & properties that have been attributed to amethyst………

Amethyst is purple quartz, and is a meditative and calming stone. It works in the emotional, spiritual, and physical planes to provide calm, balance, patience, and peace. Amethyst is also beneficial when dealing with legal problems and money issues, which can lead to prosperity and abundance.

Emotionally, amethyst can help heal personal losses and grief. Amethyst has a gently sedative energy that promotes peacefulness, happiness, and contentment. It also brings emotional stability and inner strength, and can enhance flexibility and cooperation. Amethyst can help get rid of addictions (alcohol, drugs, smoking, etc.) and compulsive behaviors of all kinds.

In the psychic and spiritual realms, amethyst is an excellent all-purpose stone that can increase spirituality and enhance intuition and psychic powers of all kinds. It does this by making a clear connection between the earth plane and other planes and worlds. Amethyst is also excellent for meditation and lucid dreaming. It is known to open one’s channels to telepathy, past life regression, clairaudience, clairvoyance, and communication with angels. Amethyst also protects against psychic attacks, especially during spiritual work, and protects one from thieves, and protects travelers.

Physically amethyst is said by spiritual healers and mystical lore to heal the withdrawal symptoms of any sort of addiction, help with headaches, insomnia, arthritis, diabetes, pain relief, circulatory system issues, endocrine system problems, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, immune system deficiencies,asthma, phobias, pregnancy and preventing miscarriage, menopause, PMS, and general healing.

Amethyst is associated with the third eye and crown chakras primarily, but can also open the heart chakra.

Spring toys

We have a policy of only carrying toys that WE want to play with!   This spring we have a growing collection of silky skirts, cloths, fairy wings, head bands, dragon silk costume cape, sparkly pink ‘dress-up shoes’,  magic wands and more.  Magical treasures abound….and not only for the wee ones.  Check out our crystals, 7-stone healing chakra wands, and other treats for the healers among us.

Get Ready For Rainy Spring Fun!

Why would Indigo Forest carry rain coats?  Or carry on about raincoats?!  And especially children’s PVC-free raingear from Europe, that you’ll want to order by February 10th for Spring puddles?

We’re all about happy & healthy, and stomping around in rainy Michigan weather without getting chilled and damp is kid heaven!  Generations of mothers have known that when their children get a good dose of fresh air in the morning, that they sleep nice and deep at night.

For the younger child, outdoor play can be one of the most essential periods for developmental growth in their day. Outdoors a child is free to explore, experiment, imagine and problem-solve.  Time and space are different, and it’s ok to be strong and loud and squishy and all sorts of things that sometimes don’t go over very well indoors.   With every plopped rock or dragged stick, children are learning about their bodies, their world, and every little aspect of biology, physics, geography, mathematics, and more!

Unstructured physical play is well-known to be a most developmentally appropriate outlet for reducing stress in children’s lives. Common sense as well as respected research tell us that physical activity improves attention spans,  helps develop healthy lifestyle habits and can calm and soothe restless children.   Under age seven, children are primed to learn through imitation and physical interaction & activity – and experiencing weather & the seasons through their senses are a big part of this healthy development.

Back to raingear – it’s hard to find gear that kids can put on themselves (think firemans overalls), that are free of over 100 toxic chemicals commonly found in other gear, that are cute and sturdy, and best of all, make splashing in puddles fun for both kids and parents!

Puddlegear is all of these things.  They even have rain mittens, which see four season use around our Midwest household!    Check out the Puddlegear selection on line, or in the catalog you’ll find at by our Puddlegear display at the store, then make your order with us (you can also call it in – 734.994.8010).  This Spring we want everyone to get outside – so 5% off all orders (prepaid), 20% off your second piece, and we’ll be ready for the learning, I mean the fun, to begin!

Rudolph-Approved! Wholesome gifts from the North Pole (and Ann Arbor!!)

Not to be Abominably Alarming or anything, but it is now just 72 hours until Christmas Morning! If your opportunity to create meaningful gifts has somehow slipped away from you, why not slip over to Indigo Forest?  We’ve taken pains to search out special treasures for all ages……..from sweetly carved barnyard animals by Ann Arbor Artisans to beautiful children’s books shipped from England. We still have many stocking stuffers like “Sticky Stones (magnetized ‘stones’ in a bright bag of your choice, great for car rides!) and pocket puzzles (remember Grandpa’s little metal twists?) and the award-winning “Think-A-Lots” (amazing bag of quality trinkets, 15 possible games, and a guaranteed easier waiting time for your family this year at restaurants, doctors’ offices, and everywhere else.)

Perhaps you have an accident-prone friend or someone moving away from home?  We have sturdy Naturopathic First Aid kits at Half-Off, and Kleen Kanteen bottles at two-for-one.   Perhaps you need $3 hand-carved sets of rosewood chopsticks,  import gifts of crafted clove boxes or hand-poured ‘honeypots’ with botantical glowing candles?   Or maybe you just need some “Christmas Spirit” essential oil to spray about the house, smoothing nerves and uplifting everyone’s spirits with the lovely smells of pine, clove, and the traditional smells of a great Christmas!

Our Hours for the rest of the week are as follows:

Wednesday 10 am-6 pm, Thursday 9 am – 5 pm, and Friday 10 am – 2 pm.

Hope to see you there -  Merry Christmas from our family to your family!!

Autumn brings cold, wet little hands….

….clutching beautiful leaves and treasured rocks.  The magical solution is at hand – have you heard of rain mittens yet? From the moment my boys saw them in action on the playground, they begged and BEGGED for them, even coming to blows over a found pair!  Easy to put on, lightly lined with thin fleece, and with long elastic cuffs to keep out the drips, these doubled our outdoor time before the sensitive one would insist on going inside.   In the winter, you can just add mittens underneath, and you are good for hours.   Here in Michigan, these are 3-season gloves!

Puddlegear is PVC-free and Oko-Tex (European ecological testing for 100 chemicals) certified.  More on material standards can be found here:  Our supplier’s catalog is @ – At Indigo Forest we keep a variety of rain mitts (toddler to about 2nd grade) and some pants & coats in stock; we’re glad to take your special order as well.  Puddlegear rain gear often lasts well to become treasured hand-me-downs between siblings, and then neighboring families.