Baby Steps A Child Development Blog


My daughter wrote her name beautifully long before the other kids in her preschool class. From the moment I placed a crayon in her hand, she fell in love with scribbling, drawing, and, eventually, writing. Like mother, like daughter.

My son, on the other hand, had little use for things like crayons and oversized markers. He scribbled, he drew some version of a circle at about an age appropriate time, and he painted constantly. But gripping a crayon, pencil, or marker was hard, so ...

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You might say that my daughter has her own special way of keeping her things organized. It’s not that her room is a complete mess. You can always see the floor and you’re not likely to trip over anything (or step on a Lego) in the dark. It’s just that her method of organization seems to lack reason. No matter how many toy bins I purchase, they all seem to overflow with stuff. I scan the bins of stuff and wonder how she manages to find anything, but she always seems to know exactly ...

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The Dish on Germs

I'm a mom of three boys, so the never ending battle to keep my house clean is no joke. The bathrooms are forever needing a good wipe down, my kitchen floors are swept at least twice a day, and the windows typically have little handprints all over them. Like most moms I know I try my hardest to keep my house tidy and free from germs, but there are many days when I just can't keep up. On these days I am okay with letting the germs win. My boys attend daycare so their immune systems are pretty ...

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Xander cleaning

As soon as my children are old enough to follow simple directions, I teach them about chores. This usually happens sometime in the second year of their life. At that point, I start a chore rock-jar system, where they are assigned one chore for each age. My 3-year-old is responsible for three weekly chores, and my 5-year-old five chores. When they complete a chore, they are awarded a rock that they place in their rock jar. When their jar is complete, they choose a reward, which could be a ...

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When kids confront feelings of anger and frustration, which is all in a day's work when it comes to the under-five crowd, they handle those feelings in a variety of ways. Some yell. Some go boneless and scream on the floor, no matter where in the world they are. Some collapse into a sobbing heap and struggle to get the words out. And some hit. Some hit siblings or other kids, and some hit their parents.

My kids are of the sobbing heap variety when it comes to coping with overwhelming ...

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I was well on my way to young adulthood before I felt anything even remotely close to self-confidence.

Old friends will read that line and think, "No way, not her, she was always full of confidence. She always knew what she wanted, and she didn't let anything stand in her way." They saw the outer layer – the version of me that I chose to share with the world. Only the ones who truly knew me well will nod their heads in agreement. They are the ones who saw the inner layers at times. ...

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Letting go is always the hardest part. No one tells you that when you’re gliding through life in a sleep-deprived state of partial amnesia with multiple babies in tow.

They tell you to enjoy every moment, and you do your best to take that advice. They tell you hold them close while you can, so you hug them every chance you get. They tell you that childhood is short, and you try to take that in (despite the muscles that will hardly move after a long night of tending to sick babies). ...

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At five years old, my son already stands out. That’s not to say that he’s better or worse, above or below, he just stands out. He always has.

He keeps his hair long and curly, because that’s how he likes it. For two years, he has taken the pails and shovels in the preschool sandbox and created his own drum kit. He loves math, piano, and documentaries about animals. But he also loves to play. And he wants to connect with other kids. The only problem … is that most five-year-old ...

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“Stay with me five more minutes, Mommy”, she whispers, as I brush her long, salty, chestnut locks from her cheek. “I just need to hold your hand.”

“I’m here, sweet pea. I’m always here.”

Please don’t hate me for what I’m about to say, although I won’t blame you one bit if you do (I might hate me a little bit, too.) This isn't bragging or perfect parenting or access to some secret book of parenting tricks that you can only find in super exclusive, private ...

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When you don't have to race out the door super early every morning with lunches made and backpacks packed, you can take time to observe your family's habits and figure out where you might need to make some changes.

It never fails when you're running short on time and patience--your child seems to find hundreds of distractions between her bedroom and the front door. While some kids are quick to get dressed and tie their shoes, others need extra time. And while this might seem like a ...

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