Tips from Mommies

by Julie

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1. Keep your child awake for at least two hours between naps. This will ensure they are hungry when they wake, rather than snacking throughout the day. (Gina)

This advice changed my life. Will was snacking and cat-napping, and I was exhausted. Now, we have a daily schedule: eat, play, sleep with two-hour waking periods. I don’t know why I didn’t do this sooner. 

2. Wash babies from top to bottom, starting with the head.  (Helen)

I didn’t see the importance of this at first (especially when I was delusional from lack of sleep during the first month), but this makes complete hygienic sense. There have been many times when Will pees in the tub, so I’m always quick to do his face first before any accidents happen. 

3. Make sure the zipper is pointing down. (Mom) 

This may seem obvious, but when you have twenty other things going on in your head, you tend to forget the little things. This was important advice when Will was a Newborn because he lived in zip-up sleepers. 

4. Turn the shower on for a few minutes before you give a bath. This helps to steam up the bathroom and keep the baby warm. (Dana)

This was wonderful advice from the nurse practitioner at Will’s doctor’s office. She is also a mother, so she tends to be more compassionate than some of the other doctors : )

5.  You can help your child learn to crawl by putting their feet up against a wall, so they can push-off. Also, you can try to lift them up onto all fours. (Cary)

I’ve debated about taking Cary’s advice. I keep thinking, “do I really want Will crawling yet?” Just kidding, this is great way to teach Will how to crawl, and he thinks it’s hysterical when I push his legs up under him. 

6. Penis down, ruffles out (Jane) 

This was excellent diaper changing advice from the lactation specialist that visited my house. I carelessly learned my lesson a few times, and Will ended up with a sleeper full of random wet spots. 

7. Wait five minutes before checking on your little one (Leah) 

Leah mentioned that she waited five minutes before going in the room after she heard her little girl making noises. Like a typical new parent, I was rushing in the nursery the moment I heard Will make a peep. Now, I wait five minutes, and half the time he falls back asleep or he enjoys talking to himself in his crib. 

8.  Warm the bottle in a cup of hot water (Mom) 

Rather than spending five minutes running the bottle under the faucet, grab a cup and fill it with hot water, leave the bottle in there while you do a load of laundry, empty the dishwasher, or any other chore you need to get done. 

9. Put cloth toys in a mesh bag to clean in the washing machine (Charlotte) 

Great idea, Charlotte. I didn’t know what to do with those slobbery cloth toys Will loves to suck on. If you plan to try this method out, make sure the cloth toys don’t have any electronics inside : )

10. Wait until your little one is asleep, and then flip them over (Katie)

This tip may only apply to me, or other parents with children who have plagiocephaly. At 4 months, the doctor said Will could start sleeping on his belly to help round-out his flat-head. He preferred his back, so my friend, Katie, suggested I put him down on his back, and flip him to his stomach after he falls fast asleep. This worked like a charm, and now Will is a tummy-sleeper. 

11. Switch arms (Robin) 

I was complaining to Robin about the wrist pain on my right side, and she suggested this simple solution: switch carrying arms. Moms tend to do a little fish-hook wrist action when we hold our babies, but I’ve learned wrists are not meant to hold that much weight. It took some getting use to, but it has been well worth it. 

12. If he wakes up too early, feed him and put him back to sleep (Elisa) 

Will was waking up around 5 a.m, and I would drag myself out of bed and grudgingly start my day. I figured I had no choice, until Elisa gave me this great tip. Now, if he wakes up anytime before 6:00, I feed him, change him, put him right back down and most of the time he sleeps until 7 or 7:30. The key is don’t engage your child, that means no talking or snuggling! Keep the sound machine on and the lights off.