Archive of ‘Behavioral Issues’ category

Bringing the Second Baby Home? What will baby number one think?


Your first pride and joy is a whirl wind, a bundle of love, changes your life in the most positive ways possible. So much so, that you decide to have baby number two! Uh oh! What will center of your world number one think? Will you feel differently yourself? Will life change once again?

Yes, life will change once again; it’s another experience that will take some getting used to, but you can handle it. You’re a mommy, after all.

But most importantly, the first pride and joy will be okay, too. More than okay. With definite potential to building a great, new relationship with their brand new sibling.

But what can you do to help baby number one get used to the new baby?

  1. Don’t yell – Often kids naturally get confused and jealous about all of the attention the new baby is getting. And they’ll show that by hitting, pushing, and even more extreme measures. The important thing is to try and not just simply yell at the first child and then call it quits. Sternly look into their eyes, and tell them that it is not okay to hit the new baby. Then gently show them how to kiss the baby, hug the baby, and ask them to apologize to the baby, if they can talk yet. If they do it again, then put them in time out, and sit with them in time out, and explain why they are in time out, and that their only way out is to go apologize to the baby and to kiss the baby.

  2. Praise – Praise your child when he or she shows affection towards baby number two. Clap, cheer, and offer your own affection towards both babies. This will help child number one to understand that they will get more positive attention by showing positive interest into baby number one.
  3. Teach them to help take care of them – make it a habit to explain to child number one how much you love them, and that they should love their baby sister or brother just as much by protecting them and taking care of them.
  4. Get them involved – When you change the new baby’s diaper, ask child number one to help mommy by getting the diaper or wipes. Even have them fold the flaps over, and have them help you sing little songs to keep the baby happy as the diaper change happens. You can even have them help you throw the diaper into the Genie. This will give them a huge sense of pride and drive to help take care of the baby more often rather than want the baby to not be around.siblings
  5. Reach for them first – Baby number one doesn’t mind if they’re second to getting out of the car, or if you put them down to read baby number one a story. And infant also won’t know if they’re waiting for their feeding time because you’re taking care of your toddler in some way first. But if you do things in the opposite order, child number one might notice and get jealous. Take care of the older child’s needs first, and as baby number two gets older, explain to child number one that you need to take care of both babies in an equal importance scale.
  6. Keep ’em busy as your breastfeed – If you are done breastfeeding baby number one and are breastfeeding baby number two, get child number one a sippy cup of milk or juice, and have them sit next to you as you put your arm around them while you are feeding the new baby. This will keep baby number one involved, and less prone to feeling left out. You can also talk to them about what you are doing, and encourage them to talk to the new baby in order to keep the baby focused while you are breastfeeding rather than the baby falling asleep.  And remember, praise, praise, praise.
  7. Use them as a tool – The best thing about having older siblings to your new baby? They can help you! Make them feel important by telling them to help mommy and talk to the new baby while you try to cook, or have them get baby number two a towel while you give the baby a bath. Little things like that will mean the world to them.
  8. Share, share, share – Instill the sharing since the getgo. My Toddler Boy was terrible at sharing when Baby Girl was first born, and even has his moments of throwing a tantrum because she’s taking something of his. But when that happens, all I have to say to him is, “Hey, can you share with her, please?” And he just goes, “Ok!” And forks over whatever it is she wants. That’s because we have continuously praised him for sharing, and shown our disappointment when he is reluctant to share. He used to also refuse to share with myself and my husband, but we’ve never stood for it, so now he’s very open to sharing with us as well!

I actually used these techniques myself when I had the new baby, and for the most part, my toddler loves baby girl. Sometimes he does get jealous because I take the new baby to work only, when I used to take Toddler Boy to work before Baby Girl was born. But I try to keep him involved by having him help me shut the door behind us as we leave for work, or help me carry a bag to the car…and as soon as I get home, I hand Baby Girl to daddy, and reach for my Toddler Boy as soon as I can, showering him with kisses and telling him how much I missed him. Also any day possible that I think I can handle both kids at work with me, I take it. And we try to have fun things planned for Toddler Boy when I”m at work. So if he gets upset when I am leaving for work, I’ll remind him, “Hey! Grandma is coming to get you and take you to the park!” And that wipes any tears away instantly. And on my days off, I try to diminish the amount of time I spend cleaning or doing other chores, and save that stuff for when the kids go to bed. That way, I can spend my day doing fun things that refresh him like going to the zoo, or the pool, or on a trip to visit friends.

Today we were at the playground, and my Baby Girl caught a little boy’s attention. My Toddler Boy noticed and stood proudly next to my Baby Girl and hugged her, and said “This is my sister! I big! I brother,” with a huge smile on his face. So even though he has moments when maybe he just wants to bop his sister on the head because she keeps taking his toys, the majority of the time, he loves having her around.

It’s a miracle! My toddler’s picking up his toys!

I’ve been pulling my hair out trying to get my toddler to pick up all his toys. I’m sure you agree when I say that there are just entirely way too many pieces to fun toddler toys. Even not-fun toddler toys that my toddler won’t even look at. They’re just entirely too tedious to pick up. And it doesn’t fail that by the end of the day, they are all scattered throughout the house. In the most random places too. Oh look! Mr. Potato head’s ear has been wedged between the doors of the entertainment center!

Anyway, like I said, I just could not get my toddler to cooperate and pick ’em up. Until my friend came over who has three kids of her own, and saw how exasperated I was. My toddler did his normal routine of picking up the messy toysorganized-toy baskets, and turned them all upside down, dumping the toys all over the floor. Books, blocks, toy food, everything. I plopped down on the couch, threw my arms down, and dropped my head back onto the cushions and sighed “I hate that. I hate it so much.”

At that point, she began to play the game of picking up toys. Timing him, handing him toys, cheering for him and urging him to put them away as fast as he could. I know this is a no-brainer, and I’ve tried it before, but I usually get impatient due to lack of time, and end up just picking up all the toys myself cuz he gets distracted and moves onto something else. But no, we kept at him, and all the kids raced each other to throw all the toys back in their containers, and alas, the living room was sort of neat again. Of course, my toddler dumped them all right back out in five minutes. But at least I was ready to play the put-back game right after!


Why is Physical Fitness so Important for Kids?


Advertisement

With winter bringing nothing but chilling cold air outside., it’s easy to get into a slug routine with your kids, but it’s snowgirlimportant for kids to get physical fitness year-round – the government recommends about one hour per day. But why? Besides the obvious health reasons that are true for any-aged human, it helps them to get into the habit of exercise for the rest of their lives.

For example, my husband used to have a friend who grew up with his mom writing him excuses in order to not do gym class. The result? A very lazy, out-of-shape adult, with a very slim chance at ever changing his ways and getting healthy. Which pretty much increases the chances of heart problems in old age or even in young age if you mix it with poor diet.

But a physically active kid makes for a happier, kid too. And actually boosts their energy throughout the day. This may seem like a negative if your child is uber energized, but a child who feels sluggish is also very moody and whiny.

For example, yesterday I took toddler boy to a friend’s house for a play date with her very active boys. They played for about 2-3 hours wit h mixture of blocks, leggos, but then other toys such as pop-up tent tunnels, whic required more physical input. After that, I took toddler boy home and bundled him up for a fun session of playing in the snow. We went up and down the slide, did snow angels, tried to make a snowman, had a small snowball fight, and then we went inside (it was REALLY cold). After that, he was in a great mood, and didn’t even take a nap. And actually didn’t even need to go to bed extremely early. Which was okay, because like I said, he was in a great mood and was actually pretty peaceful watching Blue’s Clues in the master bedroom as he wound down.


Well, today, was a completely different story. I was in a lazy mood myself. Didn’t get much sleep because baby girl is teething. The temperature dropped by about 10 degrees, bringing it down to 14 degrees Fahrenheit outside, plus I had a slew of cleaning and organizing I had put off. So I set toddler boy on quiet tasks like painting, drawing with crayons, playing with cups of water on the high chair, and color-by-number worksheets. Well, by about 5:30, he started to get VERY cranky and VERY tired. He still didn’t take a nap (Because I’m trying to get him out of the habit of napping since he goes to bed ridiculously late when he naps), but when I sat him down to eat his dinner at around 6:30, he passed out right then and there in his high chair.

I really didn’t stimulate him much physically, but he was exhausted. He also kept picking on his sister all day long, and was deliberately defying things that I was telling him to do. Whereas the day before, when I had him do more physical activities, he was extremely loving and well-behaved. Even my friends noticed, who were able to come over for movie night without him screaming in the middle of it because he wanted my attention.

So I had a first-hand experience in the past two days of why physical fitness is so important for kids. I saw the night and day behavior when there was plenty of exercise, and then practically no exercise at all. So I’ve decided that when I know I will have a full day of cleaning and chores, I’m going to start the day off with some mommy and me yoga. Most cable networks provide exercise videos for you to do at home, and you can get your child to do them too. But more on that another time!


top 10 myths about breast feeding


I recently posted a blog with some quick facts about breast feeding. But I’m sure there is still a bit of hesitance and confusion when it comes to deciding whether to do it or not. So below, I’ve written a list of 10 myths about breast feeding, that should clear things up a bit.


  1. It’s easy – It’s actually not. It takes work. I think that’s why a lot of women give up on it. You have to expect that it’s gonna take work, and be willing to do it.
  2. It hurts – That it does, but not forever. After less than a week, your breast becomes used to the suckling, and breast feeding is completely painless.
  3. If I don’t breast feed, I won’t swell – Engorgement happens either way, because either way your breasts will fill with milk. In fact, the engorgement will hurt more if you don’t breast feed, because the milk won’t be released.
  4. Breast feeding causes sagging – No, having a baby does. I explain the details here.
  5. I’ll lose more weight if I don’t breast feed – A lot of women choose not to breast feed because they want to go on special diets or take special diet supplements to get back to their pre-pregnancy weight. Actually, you’re better off breast feeding, because you burn 500-800 calories a day just by breast feeding.breastfeeding2
  6. Formula is better for babies – That used to be the belief because it used to be thought that feeding babies formula reduced colic. That’s not necessarily true, but it has been proven that even if your baby does get colic, colic leaves no long-term effects on a baby any way. And it’s also been proven that breast feeding babies reduces the risk of various diseases in their future. Hence why health departments country-wide offer incentives for women who breast feed.
  7. I can’t breast feed if I work – You can too. You just need an electric pump, and you’re in business. A lot of jobs will let you take beast pumping breaks. And it works out perfectly because the breast milk you pump on day, can be used for your caretaker to feed to your baby the next day while you are ate work.
  8. It’s cheaper to buy formula – Many women think that’s the case because they feel like they have to buy breast feeding ponchos, bras, pumps, bags, pouches, ecc. I’ve got costless remedies and answers about that here and here. You don’t need to buy all that stuff. There’s other ways to get it. If anything, breast feeding is completely free.
  9. It’s easier to feed formula – How so? You don’t need to mix breast milk. You don’t need to heat breast milk when you’re feeding your baby right from your breast. You don’t need to put it in a bottle. You don’t need to wash a bottle.
  10. I can’t drink coffee or wine if I breast feed – Now, I’m not saying to go overboard, but drinking a cup of coffee in the morning shouldn’t affect your milk, and having a glass of wine at night shouldn’t be a problem either. Your body does a pretty good job at filtering that stuff out as long as you don’t overdo it.

Got any other questions about breastfeeding? Any of your own to 10 breast feeding myths? Chime in!

Check out These Free Toddler Lesson Plans



babybagIt’s cold days like this that make free toddler lesson plans really come in handy. My toddler begs and begs and begs to go outside and play in the snow, especially after the winter episodes of all the toddler cartoons with snowball fights, and sled rides to Santa’s workshop. So I’ve had to do some research to find things to distract him any time he starts to yell, “Oushide, snow!” Don’t get me wrong, I’d totally head out into the snow with him if it was just me and him, but baby girl is still a bit too tiny for that.

That’s why it’s great to find those websites that provide free toddler lesson plans. It especially helps me to have these when I bring toddler boy to work with me. I set him on a task, and then walk away to get some work done. That’s until he starts calling my name again, and then I set him on the next task. Sometimes, though, I need to accompany these activities with a good snack, and a Blue’s Clues episode on TV.


You want to check out http://www.preschoolexpress.com/. They’ve got TONS of winter activities to choose from that start from toddler-appropriate to kindergartner levels. The teacherscafe.com is also a great resource. From those two sites alone, you can get activity calendars, winter party ideas, calendar crafts, math songs, color snacks, learning with snow, ecc.

Also, http://www.underfives.co.uk/wrksheet.html provides a bunch of free worksheets for you to have your child work on. These are all Adobe Acrobat files, so you want to download the latest version of Adobe to be able to view them.

You can follow these table activities with some basic toddler-baby mommy and me yoga activities that incorporate holding your child while toning your muscles. For example, you can do slow squats while holding your toddler in your arms with them facing you, and their legs wrapped around your waist. You want to have them count your squats as you go up and down, and actually have them repeat the words “up” and “down” with you as you do them. With this free lesson tip, your toddler’ll get a bit of exercise, you’ll get a bit of exercise, and they’ll practice counting and learn their directions. After a bit of that, it’s back to sitting down and get to work on the lesson plans.

A friend of mine also suggested going to local craft stores, where she finds crafts for a dollar for her two toddler boys to work on together. What about you? Do you have any free toddler lesson plan tips to dish out to other moms?

1 2 3 4