Baby Steps A Child Development Blog


After nine weeks of riding bikes, swimming, and collecting sea glass, I expected a rocky transition. I prepared myself for the tears. I coached myself to smile, even when the confidence that finally emerged during the summer months came to a crashing halt. I readied myself with responses and strategies to reduce the inevitable back-to-school stress. But nothing can really prepare you for that kind of overwhelming stress radiating from your once happy-go-lucky child's soul. No amount of ...

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peaceful sleep for parents

Sleep deprivation is a common topic of conversation among parents. We think of it as a problem for new parents dealing with night feedings and explosive diapers at all hours, but the truth is that modern parenthood runs on sleep deprivation. It's true. Listen to a group of parents compare sleep habits and you'll find that we live in a culture that takes pride in getting by on little sleep. Sleep, it seems, is nothing but a detriment to our productivity.

I once found myself in the ...

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ways to entertain toddler

Whether you're a stay-at-home mom, a work-at-home mom, or a work-out-of-the-house mom, there are times when you need just 5 or even 10 minutes of time down time throughout the day to recharge. These short-lived moments are your sanity savers. On hard days when your kids have been fighting all day and the baby just wants to be held, these moments can push you through the neverending day. If you have a toddler running around your feet, quiet time is hard to come by. Here are some easy ways to ...

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Despite her quiet nature, my daughter wears her feelings on her sleeve. So when a big transition has her anxious (say, for example, every new classroom she enters), I know the signs of worry. She holds me close, she clams up, and silent tears stream down her face. But my son? Totally different story.

My son is an internalizer by nature, and he's really good at playing ball. He follows directions without question (sometimes even to a fault, but that's another story), he doesn't cry at ...

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Why I Breastfed Two Children for Over 3 Years

"You're still breastfeeding?"

"I don't know how you do it!"

"Don't you think he's a little too old to be nursing?"

"Don't you want some freedom?"

These are some of the things that have been said to me by well-meaning friends and family when they found out I was breastfeeding my oldest until he was 18 months and my second for 22 months. I ...

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Few things are more embarrassing for first-time parents than a public temper tantrum. They seem to come from out of nowhere and, once they start, it's hard to know the right way to proceed. Some argue that children should be removed from the situation immediately while others believe in a direct, emotionless approach. There is no end, it seems, to advice when it comes to handling a temper tantrum.

But what about the kids? What does a temper tantrum really mean for a toddler? What’s ...

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I believe it was around the one month mark of Jackson's stay in the NICU when I finally broke down.

Up until that point, I had been bottling up all of my emotions. Because of his aspiration issues, all of his feeds had to be given via his feeding tube, which meant no breastfeeding, so I was pumping like a mad woman, and getting practically nothing. That was incredibly frustrating, since it was the one thing I should have been able to do, as a mother, to help him deal with his medical ...

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potty training

My second son, Noah, has flaming red hair, a devious smile that will melt your heart, and the sweetest little giggle. He also is strong headed, throws massive tantrums, and is a fierce negotiator. I knew he would be a hard one to potty train, but really, I wasn't prepared for all that he had to throw at me.  

When Noah was close to two and a half years old, he started to demonstrate potty training readiness signs, including following his big brother to the bathroom and pulling down ...

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We stood hand in hand at the edge of the water, watching the waves in the distance. Above, a seagull cried out just before making a dive for a crab walking innocently through the rocks. On the horizon, a sailboat moved effortlessly through the water. As if on cue, we both let out a heavy sigh in unison.

Holding my hand just a little bit tighter, my baby boy broke the silence. "Baby sperm whales ride on the mommy sperm whales when they get tired and have to come up for air. Just like I ...

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older daughter and new baby

The night before my scheduled c-section, I cried as I carried my daughter to her bed. This was her last night as an only child, and she had absolutely no idea.

Would she be able to handle the transition to big sister? Would it be difficult? Would she hate him? Would it scar her forever?

Clearly, I was overthinking things, as siblings have been born and integrated into families seamlessly for years, but, hey, I was an emotional, 40-week pregnant woman. I had a lot on my ...

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