How Different Are Your Kids’ Tastes in Food?

One of the most interesting things about spending all day every day at home with my two little boys is that I get to watch their personalities and preferences develop day by day. Sometimes, they like things that are similar – or, to put it more exactly like it appears to be from where I see it, Dylan likes Blake to have things (like clothes) that are similar to what he has, and Blake goes along with it either because he couldn’t care less or because he really wants to but doesn’t actually say so because he uses very few … Continue reading

What Does 14 Months Old Look Like?

Toddler development is a funny thing, isn’t it. As your baby grows into a toddler, it’s anybody’s guess as to what skills he will master first. Some toddlers walk early and speak late while others build a pretty hefty vocabulary before they take their first steps. There are plenty of guidelines in books and online that provide a good estimate of what your toddler might be doing, and when. Today, I realized that I did not keep track of many of Dylan’s milestones and I have not really been keeping track of Blake’s either. I have been taking lots of … Continue reading

He Never Ceases To Amaze Me

As toddlers grow, they often surprise their parents with the depth and range of emotions that they experience. The other day, Dylan treated me to a glimpse of an emotion that is not often associated with toddlers – generosity. Not just the sharing kind of generosity, but the kind of generosity that involves giving and expecting nothing in return. We were out hiking, and suddenly Dylan stopped in the middle of the trail to pick something up. I was halfway through asking him not to pick any more leaves off of the trees when I realized that he was not … Continue reading

Feeding Your Toddler – What We’re Eating Now

One common dilemma faced by the parents of toddlers is getting them to stop playing and exploring for long enough to refuel their bodies with nutritious foods. Exactly how to do that is up to you. What we eat at our house and how we eat it may be different than in your home. What is most important is that we as parents offer our toddlers plenty of opportunities to eat nutritious foods throughout their day. In the morning, Dylan wakes up hungry. We all wake up at about the same time, so we head out to the kitchen. He … Continue reading

Safety Tips For A No Bummer Summer

Summer is all about sun and fun, right? While this is true, for summer to truly be fun, you have to play it safe. Avoid summer bummers like injury and illness with the following safety tips that are aimed to help you and your toddler get the most enjoyment out of the beautiful weather. One of the most common – and most painful summertime ailments is sunburn. Gone are the days when a suntan was required summer attire, especially for kids. These days, sun protection is serious business. Of course, toddlers can be finicky, so enlist their help in choosing … Continue reading

Sorting Out Pregnancy Advice

The big problem with being pregnant is the slew of conflicting advice that comes flying in from every direction. How is a poor girl supposed to know what is true and what is not? One doctor says you’re not gaining enough weight while another says you’re gaining too much. One book says you’re not supposed to eat lunch meat and another says it’s okay if you cook it first. Some people say caffeine is okay and some people say it increases your risk for miscarriage. What is true and what is not? Whenever there is conflict about something, someone has … Continue reading

Rare Pets: Hedgehogs

I’m aware that most of my posts on the Pets blog relate to cats or dogs. They’re the most common pets in America, and also the two pets I own, so the majority of my articles focus on them. I thought I’d change things up a bit, however, with a new recurring column on rare pets. Today I take a look at the hedgehog. Hedgehogs have fascinated me from an early age, ever since my childhood introduction to Sonic the Hedgehog, a video game and cartoon character. Real hedgehogs, however, don’t look anything like Sonic, with his spiky blue ‘do … Continue reading

Caution, Items in Sun Get Hot

Summer is quickly approaching and the sun’s heat can be very intense. When we take our toddlers outside to play, we have to exercise caution against many things. We put sun block on our little ones so they don’t get burned. We bring plenty of fluids so they don’t get dehydrated and we try to keep our little ones out of as much direct sunlight as we can. What precautions are we taking at the playground? There aren’t any reminders that playground equipment gets hot. Even if the playground is not in direct sunlight, heat will permeate surfaces. We wish … Continue reading

In Search of Protein

This past weekend, Lily decided to flex her toddler muscles. Normally, she is a very eager eater and doesn’t hesitate to try anything we place in front of her. Like most children, she definitely has her favorites. We go through so many blueberries, strawberries, and watermelon that my wife jokes that we are inadvertently raising a vegetarian. Remember when your mother used to say “You can’t have any ice cream until you finish your liver”. We’re almost to that point except that blueberries are the dessert. Obviously, there is nothing wrong with Lily desiring these delicious fruits, and one could … Continue reading

Letting Things Slide

Having to deal with an extremely combative 5-year-old, you learn to pick your battles very carefully. Prior to having kids I envisioned myself being an extremely strict parent. More “Do as I say” than “Okay, let’s negotiate.” However, these days, I find myself letting things slide more than I ever thought I would. Don’t get me wrong; I am very much a stickler when it comes to important issues, such as hygiene (there’s no negotiating out of daily teeth brushing), manners (“please” and “thank you” are required, not merely suggested), proper behavior (talking back and hitting are never tolerated), and … Continue reading