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Yay for spring and summer, where we can all run free in our own backyards with bare toes wiggling. (And BOO for nasty bee stings, splinters, and mommies yelling, “No! Don’t touch that!”)
Long have I had the fantasy of a perfect child-friendly backyard playscape… but the problem with such epic daydreams is that children have a way of growing up before they can actually come true. So today, I would like to share with you five fun and fabulous inspirations for making your backyard toddler-tastic TODAY (or, at least, this weekend!):
A freshly bathed baby in snuggly pajamas is one of the best things in life, so it’s smart to keep your eyes on that prize when you embark on giving your baby a bath. Yes, it can be intimidating—but don’t stress!
The good news is, young babies can be bathed right in the kitchen sink or in an infant tub on the kitchen counter. I’d do that as long as possible, because the leaning, kneeling, and squatting required to bath an infant in a real bathtub is painful. (Try this one from Puj—it lays flat when not in use, and can be hung right on the back of your bathroom door.)
I’ve heard that two children is more than twice as hard, and I’ve heard that nothing is as difficult as the transition to first-time motherhood. (After that, you’re already a mom—you’re used to the shift in social life, work, and lack of rest that parenting brings.) Where do I stand on all this? Somewhere in the middle. In my experience, that second child intensifies the job of Mom, that’s for sure. But as for making it more than twice as hard? Eh, I don’t think so.
If you’re gearing up for Baby #2, here are some quick tips to help prep the entire family.
As the parent of a baby myself, the moment just after bedtime is one of my favorite parts of each day. Whether I’m feeling the sweet relief of being finally DONE or the warm afterglow of our cuddling, it’s all good.
The first year of your baby’s life, all bets are off. If you master a daily routine that includes a shower or preparing a balanced meal, you’re ahead of most folks. If you’re also holding down a full-time job, and you feel like a crazypants, you’re not alone. But at the end of the first year, it’s time to take control of the reins and find your new normal. After all, this parenting thing is not going away anytime soon.
Here are a few apps and online tools I recommend to help with the quest for sanity:
My little guy is in the early stages of potty training now, and this phase has already lasted six months. But believe me, I’ve been through it all before. Here are the stages as I define them: Consideration, Ticking Time Bomb, and (finally) Success! More
Baby, it’s cold outside. And while a little frost won’t hurt you, when it comes to the holiday shopping crowds… why bother? Skip the hassle and do it from home!
Here are a few fresh ideas for crossing off your holiday list–right from your couch. More
Traveling with a baby can take any rookie mom out of her comfort zone. At home, we get used to having our cars packed with must-have supplies; and the fact that a laundry machine is just a stone’s throw from the site of our latest LDS (Leaky Diaper Situation). But on the road, it’s a whole different story. And while it’s tempting to bring everything but the kitchen sink on a trip, there are a few things you can probably leave behind to lighten the load. More
It continues to surprise me how much of a free-for-all this parenting thing is. It probably starts right when the hospital lets you take the newborn home. (“What?! I get to keep him,” I remember thinking with bemused dread.) And it just keeps building from there…
Between nature and nurture, you can be pretty certain that how you do things in your home is totally different from your neighbor’s take on issues ranging from bedtime and discipline to screen time and breastfeeding.
The weather outside may be frightful—and I may be speaking in Christmas music and other cliches—but bundled up babies are so freaking cute! Seriously, is anything more adorable than a toddler in a full-on snowsuit who can’t put his arms down? Hmmm… maybe an infant with rosy cheeks snuggled warm under a fleecy blanket. (Awww.)
With that in mind, here are some toasty layers and buntings to keep your little one warm through the winter. More