Baby Language

With my first child, I never worried too much about “teaching” her how to talk. However, I did come up with one technique that seemed to work when she was a toddler. If she would mis-pronounce a word, I would simply say it back to her correctly. If she was having difficulty saying something, I would tell her to look at my mouth. When she was watching my mouth, I would enunciate slowly as she watched. It almost always did the trick. She would be able to say the word correctly from then on. Now, I have a boy and … Continue reading

My Toddler is Acting Like a Baby!

Sometimes you just have to set your agenda aside and hold a baby in your lap, or in my case, a toddler. The past couple of days have felt like we have taken two steps back. My son, who has been pretty independent lately, now has seemingly reverted and wants to be treated like a baby again. This morning I wanted to clean the kitchen, but immediately my son started crying with great big giant tears. “Hug! My Baby! Hug!” he cried out. Plan B is to get as much done on the computer as possible, since it appears I’ll … Continue reading

Copy Cat

One of the ways that baby’s learn new skills is by mimicking their parents. This can be a bad thing if you, as the parent, are not on your best behavior, but it can also work to your advantage if you are purposefully trying to teach your baby or toddler a new skill. Lately we have noticed that our 19-month-old toddler is copying everything we do and say more than ever. This has worked out well in teaching him all sorts of things. One of his new skills is eating with a fork. He has been using utensils since he … Continue reading

How to Teach Your Baby Table Manners

I think sometimes we forget that table manners are learned behavior. We’ve been eating our spaghetti with a fork for so long that when we’re confronted with the task of teaching our babies how to eat, it’s a little overwhelming. Sometimes it’s just easier to spoon feed them or limit them to “neat” foods. They’ll never learn, though, unless they practice on their own. Bring out the bibs, the miniature forks, and the spaghetti; it’s time to learn table manners! First of all, have a list of goals or milestones in mind and work towards just one at a time. … Continue reading

Your Young Toddler and Temper Tantrums

Oh the joys of raising a young toddler who has recently discovered her desire for independence. She answers every question with a firm, “no.” She purposely gets into things she knows she should not get into (and occasionally you may even hear her telling herself “no” before she does it). She gets mad at her toys, at you, and at nothing. She expresses her anger by flailing herself to the floor, sometimes hurting herself in the process, and often causing a scene. She’ll try to bite, scratch, kick and hit, which is bewildering to the mother who wonders where she … Continue reading

Are You Causing Your Toddler’s Sleep Problems?

Yesterday I wrote about three bad habits you should avoid from the beginning if you want to help your baby establish healthy sleep patterns. Interestingly, I ran across research today that showed a link between parenting style and sleeping problems that last into toddlerhood, past the 12 month mark. Defining Healthy Sleep Despite what all the mothers in your mom’s group say (and despite what you may feel) “sleeping through the night” is medically defined as 5 hours. While that is certainly not enough sleep for most adults, it’s important to understand that when we’re looking for healthy sleep habits, … Continue reading

3 Bad Bed Time Habits You Shouldn’t Start

I almost hesitate to post this. The truth is one family’s bad habit might be another’s god send. As someone who doesn’t do sleep deprivation well, I find myself returning to this motto: do whatever allows you the most sleep. But there are a few things that are definite no-no’s and/or will make your life harder down the road. Bad Habit #1: Putting Baby to Bed with a Bottle This isn’t my opinion. It’s the opinion of the American Dental Association, as well as the American Association of Pediatrics, as well as the World Health Organization. Why, is this such … Continue reading

Ask a Baby Blogger: Help! My Active Toddler Is Way Too Active!

Question: Do you have any suggestions for how to structure and organize a day for an active toddler? My 18 month old is constantly on the go and I’m not sure I can keep up with her!!! As the mother of two active toddlers, I am full of suggestions. But you need to know that suggestions are just that. What works for one, may well not work for another. With that said, here is a list of things to think about: 1. Do you have a routine? In my experience, the more active they are, the more routine they need. … Continue reading

A Baby’s Eating Habits

It’s not unusual to hear a mom complain: “My baby only eats ________.” You can insert any manner of descriptive food words there. The reality is that most babies pass through a “picky eating phase” to the displeasure of many worried moms and grandmoms. Why do they do that? Who can understand the mind of a baby? Especially when you’re serving things that they previously liked. . .just yesterday. Babies go through phases and eating only orange foods, or sticking to a diet of chicken nuggets is entirely normal. And despite what many people think, it’s fine too. As long … Continue reading

Toddlers and Grossology

I consider myself fairly knowledgeable on all things baby. I mean really, it’s hard to have 5 kids and not know at least something right? I have studied breastfeeding research ad nauseum, am current with AAP guidelines (even the ones I disagree with), and even know a fair amount of psychology and child development. . .but one thing eludes me still. Why are toddlers fascinated with all things that are gross? One might say, they are fascinated with their own bodies and well, our bodies do produce gross things now and then. But having five children in the house, I … Continue reading