Thursday, March 15, 2007

Now for Sale: Infant Edition: How to Survive the First Year

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Buy it today for $9.99!

Wish your baby came with a manual? Here it is. A day-by-day guide to surviving the craziest year of your life - your first child's first year.

You can learn from our hands on experience of being first-time parents. It's the next best thing to going on a dry run at having a baby.

From day 1 to day 365, you'll find answers to real questions that you thought there wasn't an answer to or were afraid to ask:

  • How do you eliminate a nighttime feeding

  • What should you do if your baby has a fever?

  • How do you raise a smart baby?

  • Should you breastfeed when you're sick?

  • What should you be feeding your baby as they grow?

  • What do you do with a picky eater?

  • How do you help your baby sleep through the night?

  • What are the symptoms and remedies to common sicknesses like ear infections, the flu, pneumonia?

  • Is it O.K. to switch brands of baby formula?

  • Plus the answers to many, many more typical parenting questions

You'll find the answers to all these and more, based off my experience, inside.

You can read a tip every day and discover something new as your baby grows, or you can read them all while you're waiting for junior to arrive.

Makes a great gift for moms and dads expecting for the first time!

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

365 First Time Parenting Tips is Moving!

A full year is over and we're all grown up! Not really, actually, toddler years are staring us right in the face.

This blog has outgrown it's space here, and it's moving to a new domain. So update your feed readers, your rss subscriptions and bookmarks.

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And be sure to update all your bookmarks at the new site.


Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Day 365 - Back to the Beginning

Today's first time parenting tip - Remember where you came from to get where you're going

Day 1 - Today's Tip - Have an OB that you like, trust and knows your wishes.

Even though its common sense to trust your doctor, its even more important to like them and to know without a doubt that they're looking out for your best interests. My wife and I chose an OB/GYN with 5 doctors, and for pregnancies they all rotated both office visits and hospital coverage. Of course, we had two favorites, one we disliked, and two we didn't know that well.

When the time came to suggest a C-section to my wife after 13 hours of fruitless labor, we were both relieved that our favorite doctor was on to talk us through it. Had it been one we didn't like or didn't know that well, we probably would have fought the C-section. But we trusted him, and even though we didn't like it, we knew he would only suggest it in our best interests. Turns out it was the right call, our baby was very big, 10lbs, 23.5", he was sideways in my normally 114 pound wife and he had the cord wrapped around his neck.

That was the first post I made a year ago today when my son was first born. Looking back over the posts I've made has taken me back and made me realize how far my wife and I have come as parents.

In the beginning, as you can see from the post above, my tips were general and short. We were happy just to be surviving. As time wore on we felt like maybe, in some strange universe, our son might be lucky enough to survive our bumbling attempts at parenting for another month or so. Then we got in a groove, and most things because natural.

The posts at the end of the year were more specific. Less about making it through the day, and more about making it better.

And when I look back at videos and pictures of my son over the year, I can see how much he's changed too. I remember how fragile and completely dependent he seemed when he was first born, wailing his head off and clutching my hand because he had no idea what was going on. Now he's walking all over the place, figuring things out for himself and still clutching to his mom or his dad when he feels scared.

It's been a year unlike any other, and I hope I've helped some other parents out there. The great thing about the age we live in is that it's so easy to share information, and you never have to feel alone.

If you're a first time parent and are scared, don't be. Everyone has been along the path you are about to journey down. There are lots of other people out there with experiences similar to yours.

Enjoy the ride.

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Monday, February 19, 2007

Day 364 - Can You Do This? Month 12

Today's First Time Parenting Tip - Track your baby's milestones to make sure they're developing correctly

Its important to make sure that your infant doesn't have any developmental problems, but if he or she seems slow in one area, don't worry about it too much unless they're way behind or your pediatrician seems concerned. Everyone loves to compare their accomplishments to others, but the fact is some babies are fast in verbal development, but slow in the physical department, or vice versa. If you're worried about it, ask your pediatrician. At the end of the twelth month, your infant should be able to:

  • Pull up to a standing position from sitting
  • Drink independently
  • Stand alone
  • Give a high five or play ball
  • Walk for a step or maybe two
  • Put objects into a container

Probably will be able to:

  • Say a word other than mama or dada
  • Stand well by themselves
  • Walk for more than a few steps
  • Understand and respond to the word no sometimes
  • Gesture for an object that they want without crying

Taken from What to Expect the First Year

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Sunday, February 18, 2007

Day 363- Switching from Formula to Milk

Today's first time parenting tip - Switch your infant from formula to whole milk gradually.

If you've got a good natured baby that takes well to change, switching from formula to whole milk for their second year of life cold turkey might be a good approach. But if you've got a fussier baby or one that's more resistant to change, going gradual might be a good strategy.

Here's how to do it:

  • Start with the middle of the day, and work out. Most infants will resist giving up their morning and bedtime bottle the most

  • Mix 2 parts formula and 1 part whole milk into a sippy cup for the first few days. If your baby doesn't want to drink out of the cup, then try just focusing on the whole milk part.

  • Add more and more milk in three day increments, until your infant is drinking a whole serving of milk

  • Replace another feeding and give it another three days or so. By the time you're done, your child should be drinking 16-20 oz. of formula

  • Serve the milk how you'd drink it yourself. Cold milk might put off some children, but you also don't want to be warming glasses of milk up for the rest of your life either. Try it both ways and see what happens

  • If you've successfully made the switch and your baby starts to refuse milk, don't go back to formula. Try other dairy products like cheese or yogurt.

What's your success story with making the switch?

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Saturday, February 17, 2007

Day 362 - Fingerpaints with No Mess

Today's first time parenting tip - Try Crayola Color Wonder Fingerpaints and Coloring Book if your baby likes to color but you don't want a mess

Coloring might be your infant's thing. If you let him mess around with crayons or fingerpaints every once and awhile, you know how much of a mess they can be. Especially fingerpaints. They have a way of getting on and staining everything, no matter how washable they say they are.

Enter Crayola Color Wonder Fingerpaints and Coloring Book. Your baby simply touches their finger to the non-toxic "paint" cups, and then they touch the wonder paper, and they're off! The color appears right before there eyes.

The great thing is, the special "paint" only leaves a color on wonder paper. So if some does get in the carpet or on the wall, its pretty easy to wipe off. Plus, it's less messy than fingerpaints.

The only thing I don't like is that you can't color outside the lines. I'm big on teaching kids to think non-linearly, and coloring inside the lines (even though you can make a purple sun or a blue lamb) seems kind of restrictive. All in all, a fun toy. I think my wife had a great time with it too.

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Friday, February 16, 2007

Day 361 - Track Your Baby's Growth Visually

Today's first time parenting tip - Track your baby's growth with yearly pictures and an object

Want to track your baby's growth, but don't want to mark up the doors in your house? Try what my wife and I are planning on doing.

Every year, we'll take a picture. The idea is that he'll be wearing the same kind of clothes (I think we both like jeans and a plain, red shirt). In the picture we're also going to have some kind of object that will show how much he's grown.

I want to do a ball. My wife wants to do an adult sized belt (He'll wear the belt and it'll be ridiculously large until he's 10 or 11).

After you do this you'll have a great record of how your baby grew and changed his appearance over the years. And they'll love looking at it in the end to see how far they've come.

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