Your baby's cognitive skills are really growing. Now, she can follow simple, one-step commands, such as "Get your shoes." Add too many words, though—"Get your shoes and your coat"—and she’ll probably get... Read more
Are your baby's grandparents a big part of her life? Or are they the kind of grandparents who swoop in around the holidays? With families scattered across the country, maintaining close family ties can be a challenge. But whether your parents... Read more
Sippy cups: Ben just got the hang of the sippy cup the other day. I kept trying it out and he wasn't getting the idea of tipping it up high enough, either. He would hold on to it, and I would guide it and tip it for him. I would also let him band it... Read more
Your baby's cognitive skills are really growing. Now, she can follow simple, one-step commands, such as "Get your shoes." Add too many words, though—"Get your shoes and your coat"—and she’ll probably get confused. Encourage your baby's budding language skills by surrounding her with words. Narrate your activities and tell her the names of common objects. Play "head-shoulders-knees-and-toes" with her; most babies love identifying the parts of the body. Use play as a chance to introduce concepts such as "up," "down," "in," "out," "over," and "under." Listen to your baby as well. Respond to her coos and gurgles, and pause your running commentary long enough to give her a chance to respond. Accept your baby's speech as-is. Don't expect perfect pronunciation; it can take years to develop the physical coordination required to produce certain complex sounds. And never, ever deny your baby's requests simply because she hasn't used the proper words. Some parents will insist that their baby say, "cracker" before handing over a cracker, but natural language development takes time. If your baby points at the crackers and grunts, say something like, "Cracker? You want a cracker? Here’s your cracker," and hand her the cracker. She'll figure it out soon enough. One word she's likely to understand: NO. Of course, that doesn't mean she'll always obey. At this age, she's entranced with the power of the word and might decide to test it out herself, either by verbally saying, "No!" or by shaking her head. As cute as she may be, this is the time to remain firm. If you say "No," but quickly burst into giggles when she emulates you, she'll learn that you're not serious. Trust us: A little consistency now will save you a lot of grief later. Your baby's desire to test your boundaries can get her into all sorts of trouble. One potential trouble spot: Stairs. If you don't have stairs at home, be extra cautious when visiting any friends or relatives with stairs. Your baby will be drawn to them like a bee to honey—and will have absolutely zero experience to draw from. She'll catch on quickly, but until then, it's a good idea to supervise all stair-climbing exploits directly.
Are your baby's grandparents a big part of her life? Or are they the kind of grandparents who swoop in around the holidays? With families scattered across the country, maintaining close family ties can be a challenge. But whether your parents live around the block or across the county, fostering a healthy grandparent/grandchild bond benefits everyone. Start by putting aside your own preconceived notions. Yes, you spent eighteen years (or more!) living with your parents, but you've never known them as grandparents. Ditto for the in-laws. Being a grandparent is an entirely different game than being a parent and it's not uncommon for uninvolved parents to turn into doting grandparents. On the other hand, not every grandparent is the hands-on type, so keep your own expectations in check. Having rigid expectations for what a grandparent should or shouldn't do will only set you up for disappointment. Do your best to foster frequent communication. The grandparent and grandchild who see each other often will naturally feel more connected than ones who see each other once a year. So visit, as often as you can. Send pictures, either digitally or by mail. Call—and let your baby talk too. Take advantage of modern technology. With Skype, your baby can see her grandparents when they call. Finally, respect limits. Some grandparents will babysit at the drop of a hat; others prefer to leave the childcare to others. That's Ok. What matters most is the developing relationship between grandparent and grandchild.
Sippy cups: Ben just got the hang of the sippy cup the other day. I kept trying it out and he wasn't getting the idea of tipping it up high enough, either. He would hold on to it, and I would guide it and tip it for him. I would also let him band it around, but if he threw it on the ground more than a couple times, I would take it away. Then, all of a sudden he knew how to use it, and now he loves it! —annyab
I have also realized no matter how good my intentions are/were she ultimatly is guiding me on how I do things, BTDT moms KNOW their stuff better than experts and no matter how much past experience I have with children it didn't fully prepare me for motherhood. I am in awe at how much I love being a mother and how it has altered my relationship with everyone. —aleefeld Read More