Tuesday, May 31, 2011

No Grief Baby Teeth!

A repost from www.playthisway.com!

Ahhhh. Baby is finally sleeping through the night and, just maybe, you are too? YOU ARE ABOUT TO ENTER THE TEETHING ZONE. We’ve all been there! And we’ve all gotten through it. But those periods when your little one is uncomfortable can be made better if you understand Dr. Jen’s TOOTHY advice:

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Hearing & Play

I think I have an absolutely amazing voice. My husband does not agree; most adults would also not agree (and probably cover their ears).

Recently, my now 7-year-old daughter said, “Mom, you really can’t sing. You think you can, but you can’t.” Then she added, “But what I love about you is that you do it anyway.”

Rock it around your babies! Babies love to hear you sing. Use expression, use your fabulous range, and let it go! This is one way to work on language development, expression and show a baby—early—that being goofy can be a lot of fun. I happen to be a huge Barbara Streisand fan. It’s kind of mortifying; I’ll share some stories in the future. My girls were signing “You Don’t Bring Me Flowers” by the age of 18 months. I spared that tune for my boys.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Touch & Play

Your baby's sense of touch is getting better. The sense of touch is most developed in their lips and gradually develops to your baby’s arms and legs.

Provide colorful objects of different textures, shapes and sizes for your infant to hold and explore. This is a good age to introduce an infant gym with interesting objects that dangle for your baby to bat at. Or hold a toy just out of reach for your baby to reach for, swat and grab hold of. Just don't string up toys on cribs or other baby equipment — your baby could get tangled in them. An infant gym will also provide a soft textured surface for baby to learn to roll over on as she gets a little older.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Toy and Play Safety Tips for Caregivers, Nannies and Babysitters

Repost from www.playthisway.com.

While it is important for you children to have fun while in the care of others, it is even more important for your child to be safe. I’ve outlined some basic toy and play safety topics for discussion with your caregiver below:

1. Make sure your caregiver understands how toys are intended to be used, and that instructions are understood.

2. When opening new toys, it is important to discard plastic wrappings. When assembling toys or changing batteries, it is important to secure small parts and batteries in a safe place. Also, tools used such as a screwdriver, may present their own safety hazards.

3. Make sure your caregiver understands age recommendations for toys and what your expectations are for safe play between different aged siblings. Do you want older children to play with small parts in a designated area of the house? Do you want your caregiver to double-check after clean up?

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Vision & Play

As a baby’s vision improves, she is better able to distinguish between different shapes, colors and movements.

While babies are able to see from birth, your baby is very nearsighted and can only focus on what is about a hand’s distance from her face. Guess what! That is about the distance your face is when you are feeding or holding her! So, make sure she gets plenty of opportunities to stare at and become familiar with your friends and family’s faces because, while she may be smiling at you from the day she is born, your baby will take a little time to get to know the others around her.

One pretty cool thing I learned, I was the best looking thing in the world to each of my babies. With no flaws, no imperfections, momma is every baby’s fashionista super model!

Thursday, May 12, 2011

Car Seat Recommendations: What You Should Know

A repost from www.playthisway.com.

The American Academy Of Pediatrics (AAP) stepped up recommendations for car safety in a new policy, issued in a recent issue of Pediatrics. Based on an important 2007 study in Injury Prevention, the AAP now recommends that parents keep toddlers in rear-facing car seats until the age of 2, or until the reach they maximum height/weight capacity for their car seat.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

What is Play?

Babies love to be played with and also should be encouraged to play alone. Although not yet capable of engaging in play with other children until the age of 12-18 months, babies love to watch older children play and be the object of (massive amounts of) affection. Cuddles, “raspberries” on the tummy and peek-a-boo are examples of ways an adult or older child can play with a baby. Passive forms of entertainment, such as watching a mobile or enjoying a small dose of a developmentally appropriate video, are also opportunities for babies to benefit from play.

To this day, my kids love when we pretend we each are a pizza maker and a pizza—we roll each other out on the ground, spread out cheese toppings (tickling), flatten each other out and then gobble each other up! That was a baby game, that became a silly, goofy family tradition. (I promise, kiddos, I won’t do that at your weddings!)

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Please, Please Hold That Baby's Head! AHHHHH!

A repost from www.playthisway.com!

Have you ever seen someone holding a baby and think “Uh oh! Please support that baby’s head!”? Do you say something?

Well, I sure do! It's a bit different than hemming and hawing over whether you tell someone she has a run in her stocking! There is definitely an important foundation behind the "support the baby's head" belief.

Newborn babies have large heads in proportion to the rest of their body. This coupled with neck muscles that are not yet strong enough to support the head; means the head must always be supported.

So, how does one properly hold a baby?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Play & Development

There’s a lot behind the expression, “We’re not just playing around!” While playing, babies are exploring their new magical surroundings, bonding with those around them and learning about their amazing little body. Close your eyes for a moment, and imagine waking up in an entirely new world, one with new sensations coming at every wink and complete awe everywhere you turn.

When my little two-month-olds were unable to sit up and clap or play with blocks—was there benefit to interactive play at this age? You betcha! Babies develop through play—physically, cognitively and emotionally.