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Potty Training 101



Potty Training For Dummies Cheat Sheet

Potty training is an important step in childhood development. As a parent, you need to recognize the signs that your child is ready for the toilet talk, institute a potty-training process, keep that process going, and recognize when your child is almost there. Along the way, you need to make sure that your child knows potty-training terminology, be able to spot problems that need medical attention, and separate potty-training myths from reality.

Signs that Your Child Is Ready for Potty Training

Having a potty-trained toddler is a day every parent longs for, but you can’t rush the process. Wait for signs that your child is ready to tackle this big challenge. Watch for the signs in the following list; the first five are absolutely essential:

  • Stays dry at least two hours
  • Gets bummed by wet or messy diapers
  • Likes to please
  • Imitates and follows simple instructions
  • Walks and runs
  • Asks you for diaper changes
  • Tries to dress herself
  • Likes things in proper places
  • Knows potty lingo:

Wet

Messy or Dirty

Dry

Clean

Pee

Bottom

Poop or BM

 

Potty-Training Steps in a Nutshell

Potty training can be broken down into steps, just like any other learning process. The first step is to choose a weekend to devote to getting your child potty-trained, one that you and your child can spend focusing on meeting the potty-training challenge. The following very broad steps outline the four basic tasks:

  1. Have your little doll teach her little doll how to use the potty.
  2. Do hourly potty-sits throughout Potty Training Weekend.
  3. Set up a Success Chart with gold stars or fun stickers for good tries and even minor successes (tiny trickles).
  4. Switch from diapers to training pants after your toilet-trainee has racked up a few successes.

How to Keep Potty Training Working

Potty training can be frustrating for both you and your toddler. Success comes when you keep your expectations realistic and your attitude positive. Use the tips in the following list to help make your potty-training time a success:

  • Take on a laidback attitude for the potty-training show. Your chickadee is the star, hitting her mark. You’re the coach/director/teacher.
  • Back off when your child gets feisty or “no-no’s” you.
  • Keep in mind that your toddler is new to the role but willing to be a winner. Just respect his learning curve.
  • Accept (and help your little miss accept) that she’s not going to be perfect right off the bat. She’ll drip and slip and miss — and that’s okay.
  • Laugh together, clap your hands — cheer your kiddo’s willingness to give it a try! Keep the praise coming, and don’t scold or criticize.

Five Potty-Training Myths

Potty training has a long, long history — the first babies on the planet were potty trained. In that long history, a lot of myths have sprung up, although many of the most prevalent seem to be modern creations. The most five common myths are debunked in the following table:

Myth

Put your baby (12–18 months) on the potty and
she’ll learn what’s up.

You’re the only person in the world who thinks that
forcing potty training is a bad idea.

Your child’s life is ruined if you mess up his potty
training.

Potty training is always a time of conflict for you and your
toddler.

Professional caregivers are experienced potty-trainers, so let
them train your child.

Signs that Your Potty-Training Toddler Needs to See a Doctor

Potty training forces you and your toddler to focus on waste elimination — a normal yet often messy process. Sometimes, this focus on toilet habits can bring to light issues that need the attention of a trained medical person. Take your tot to the doc when

  • She hasn’t had a bowel movement (BM) in three days.
  • He strains when trying to pee or poop.
  • She complains that having a bowel movement hurts.
  • He says peeing burns or hurts, or his pee stream is intermittent
  • She pees very seldom (every eight to nine hours).
  • He has sudden urges to pee and pees frequently
  • She uses the potty regularly but has wet pants, too.
  • He has blood stains on his underwear.
  • She has frequent BM stains on her undies.
  • He’s five and still bedwetting.

Signs that Your Toddler Is Almost Potty Trained

Your toddler will eventually be potty trained, and maybe sooner than you expect if you can devote a weekend to the training process. Recognize your child’s small successes, and know that when you start seeing the behaviours in the following list, your child is nearly trained:

  • He tells you when he’s gone in his undies.
  • She goes to the potty chair, sits down, and tries.
  • He has racked up a string of successful potty trips.
  • She’s proud of her new, big-girl undies and likes them clean and dry.

 

Whooping Cough



Whooping Cough

Whooping cough (or pertussis) is a highly contagious respiratory infection that can affect people of any age. For adolescents and adults, the infection may only cause a persistent cough. However, for babies and young children, whooping cough can be life threatening. Complications of whooping cough in babies include pneumonia, fits and brain damage from prolonged lack of oxygen. Most hospitalisations and deaths occur in babies less than six months of age.

Signs and Symptoms: 

Whooping cough often starts like a cold with a runny nose, sneezing and tiredness over several days, and then the characteristic coughing bouts develop. These bouts can be very severe and frightening, and may end with a crowing noise (the ‘whoop’) as air is drawn back into the chest. Coughing episodes are frequently followed by gagging or vomiting. During coughing attacks, a child's breathing can be obstructed and they may become blue or stop breathing. The bouts of coughing may continue for many weeks even after appropriate treatment. Babies under six months of age, vaccinated children, adolescents and adults may not display the typical whoop. Even in adults, pertussis can cause significant problems with the cough persisting for up to 3 months, and other symptoms, such as sleep disturbance or, rarely, rib fracture.

Treatment: 

Treatment is a course of antibiotics which reduces the time a person is infectious to others and may reduce symptoms if given early in the disease. To be effective, antibiotics need to be given within 21 days of the start of general symptoms or within 14 days of the start of the bouts of coughing.

Some people who have had close contact with an infected person may need to take antibiotics to prevent infection. This includes people at high risk of serious complications (i.e. children aged less than six months); and others who might spread it to these children, such as women near the end of their pregnancy, or people who live or work with infants under the age of 6 months. Seek the advice of your doctor about the need for antibiotics to reduce the risk of infection in yourself or in infants at risk of serious complications.

Transmission: 

Whooping cough bacteria are highly infectious and are spread to other people by an infected person coughing and sneezing. The infection can also be passed on through direct contact with infected secretions from the mouth or nose. The time between exposure to the bacteria and getting sick is usually seven to ten days, but can be up to three weeks. A person is most infectious in the early stages of their illness. Unless treated with appropriate antibiotics for at least five days, a person is regarded as infectious for three weeks after the first sign of any cough; or 14 days after the start of the bouts of coughing.

 

 

 

Prevention: 

To avoid passing the disease on to others, a person with whooping cough should stay away from work, school, pre-school or child care until they have had at least 5 days of their course of antibiotics, or until 21 days after the first sign of any coughing, or until 14 days after the severe bouts of coughing began.

If people who have had close contact with an infectious person are not fully vaccinated, they may need to stay away from places where there are young children or pregnant women. Your doctor can provide advice on this.

Anyone who has been in close contact with an infectious person should keep a close eye on their own health. If they develop signs of early whooping cough in the three weeks following the exposure, they should immediately remove themselves from close contact with others until they have seen a doctor, mentioning to the doctor about the contact with whooping cough. The person should not return to work until they are no longer infectious; or another cause has been confirmed for their illness.

People who are visiting a doctor in relation to whooping cough should advise the staff either prior to the visit or immediately on arrival so appropriate infection control measures can be taken.

Vaccination:

Vaccination is the most effective way to control whooping cough. To ensure full protection at the right time, it is important that all the doses of the vaccine are given at the recommended times; although catch up vaccinations can and should be given if vaccines are delayed for some reason.

  • Infants aged 2 months (vaccines due at 2 months can be given from 6 weeks), 4 months and 6 months)
  • Children at 18 months of age
  • Children aged 4 years (vaccines due at 4 years can be given from 3 years 6 months)
  • Year 7 student booster dose, usually given in the school immunisation program.

Like all medications, vaccines may have side effects. Most side effects are minor, last a short time and do not lead to any long-term problems. Possible side effects of whooping cough vaccine may include fever, redness and soreness or swelling where the injection was given, nausea, headache, tiredness and aching muscles. More serious side effects are extremely rare but can include severe allergic reactions. Contact your immunisation provider if you or your child has a reaction following vaccination which you consider serious or unexpected.

 

Postnatal Depression

 

It's normal for women and their partners to experience a wide range of emotional experiences during pregnancy and the year following birth (the perinatal period). Physical changes in pregnancy can affect your emotions and mood, and being a parent may be different from your expectations.

Up to 80 per cent of women experience the baby blues in the early days after the birth due to changes in hormone levels. Women can feel tearful or overwhelmed but this usually passes within a few days and without specific care apart from support and understanding.

Postnatal depression is a type of depression that many parents experience after having a baby. While it affects more than 1 in every 10 women within a year of giving birth, it can also affect fathers and partners.

It's important to seek help as soon as possible if you think you might be suffering from postnatal depression. With the right support, which can include self-help strategies and therapy, most women make a full recovery.

Symptoms:

 

  • You feel overwhelmed. Not like “hey, this new mom thing is hard.” More like “I can’t do this and I’m never going to be able to do this.” You feel like you just can’t handle being a mother. In fact, you may be wondering whether you should have become a mother in the first place.
  • You feel guilty because you believe you should be handling new motherhood better than this. You feel like your baby deserves better. You worry whether your baby can tell that you feel so bad, or that you are crying so much, or that you don’t feel the happiness or connection that you thought you would. You may wonder whether your baby would be better off without you.
  • You don’t feel bonded to your baby. You’re not having that mythical mommy bliss that you see on TV or read about in magazines. Not everyone with postpartum depression feels this way, but many do.
  • You can’t understand why this is happening. You are very confused and scared.
  • You feel irritated or angry. You have no patience. Everything annoys you. You feel resentment toward your baby, or your partner, or your friends who don’t have babies. You feel out-of-control rage.
  • You feel nothing. Emptiness and numbness. You are just going through the motions.
  • You feel sadness to the depths of your soul. You can’t stop crying, even when there’s no real reason to be crying.
  • You feel hopeless, like this situation will never ever get better. You feel weak and defective, like a failure.
  • You can’t bring yourself to eat, or perhaps the only thing that makes you feel better is eating.
  • You can’t sleep when the baby sleeps, nor can you sleep at any other time. Or maybe you can fall asleep, but you wake up in the middle of the night and can’t go back to sleep no matter how tired you are. Or maybe all you can do is sleep and you can’t seem to stay awake to get the most basic things done. Whichever it is, your sleeping is completely screwed up and it’s not just because you have a newborn.
  • You can’t concentrate. You can’t focus. You can’t think of the words you want to say. You can’t remember what you were supposed to do. You can’t make a decision. You feel like you’re in a fog.
  • You feel disconnected. You feel strangely apart from everyone for some reason, like there’s an invisible wall between you and the rest of the world.
  • Maybe you’re doing everything right. You are exercising. You are taking your vitamins. You have a healthy spirituality. You do yoga. You’re thinking “Why can’t I just get over this?” You feel like you should be able to snap out of it, but you can’t.
  • You might be having thoughts of running away and leaving your family behind. Or you’ve thought of driving off the road, or taking too many pills, or finding some other way to end this misery.
  • You know something is wrong. You may not know you have a perinatal mood or anxiety disorder, but you know the way you are feeling is NOT right. You think you’ve “gone crazy.”
  • You are afraid that this is your new reality and that you’ve lost the “old you” forever.
  • You are afraid that if you reach out for help people will judge you. Or that your baby will be taken away.


Many women don't realise they have postnatal depression, because it can develop gradually.

Don't struggle alone hoping that the problem will go away. Remember that:

  • a range of help and support is available, including therapy
  • depression is an illness like any other 
  • it's not your fault you're depressed – it can happen to anyone
  • being depressed doesn't mean you're a bad parent
  • it doesn’t mean you’re going mad
  • your baby won't be taken away from you – babies are only taken into care in very exceptional circumstances

What causes postnatal depression?

The cause of postnatal depression isn't completely clear.

  • a history of mental health problems, particularly depression, earlier in life
  • a history of mental health problems during pregnancy
  • having no close family or friends to support you
  • a poor relationship with your partner
  • recent stressful life events, such as a bereavement
  • experiencing the "baby blues"

Myths about postnatal depression

Postnatal depression is often misunderstood and there are many myths surrounding it. These include:

  • Postnatal depression is less severe than other types of depression. In fact, it's as serious as other types of depression.
  • Postnatal depression is entirely caused by hormonal changes. It's actually caused by many different factors.
  • Postnatal depression will soon pass. Unlike the "baby blues", postnatal depression can persist for months if left untreated. In a minority of cases, it can become a long-term problem.
  • Postnatal depression only affects women. Research has actually found that up to 1 in 25 new fathers become depressed after having a baby.
Benefits of Breastfeeding

 

Benefits of Breastfeeding

The list of benefits that come from breastfeeding is almost endless! And not just for your baby, but for you too.

Most medical professionals recommend exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months of your baby’s life. In addition to containing all the vitamins and nutrients your baby needs in the first six months of life, breast milk is packed with disease-fighting substances that protect your baby from illness.

Here's a look at some of the most important benefits breastfeeding offers you and your baby.

Breastfeeding protects your baby from a long list of illnesses

Numerous studies from around the world have shown that stomach viruses, lower respiratory illnesses, ear infections, and meningitis occur less often in breastfed babies and are less severe when they do happen. Exclusive breastfeeding (meaning no solid food, formula, or water) for at least six months seems to offer the most protection.

Breastfeeding can protect your baby from developing allergies

Babies who are fed a formula based on cow's milk or soy tend to have more allergic reactions than breastfed babies.

Breastfeeding may boost your child's intelligence

Various researchers have found a connection between breastfeeding and cognitive development. In a study of more than 17,000 infants followed from birth to 6 1/2 years, researchers concluded from IQ scores and other intelligence tests that prolonged and exclusive breastfeeding significantly improves cognitive development.

Another study of almost 4,000 children showed that babies who were breastfed had significantly higher scores on a vocabulary test at 5 years of age than children who were not breastfed.

Experts say that the emotional bonding that takes place during breastfeeding probably contributes to some of the brainpower benefits, but that the fatty acids in breast milk may play the biggest role.

Breastfeeding may protect your child from obesity

Breastfeeding as a way to help reduce your child's risk of becoming overweight or obese. breastfeeding reduces a child's risk of becoming overweight as a teen or adult. The strongest effect is in children who were exclusively breastfed, and the longer the baby was breastfed the stronger the link.

Experts think that breastfeeding may affect later weight gain for several reasons:

  • Breastfed babies are better at eating until their hunger is satisfied, leading to healthier eating patterns as they grow.
  • Breast milk contains less insulin than formula. (Insulin stimulates the creation of fat.)
  • Breastfed babies have more leptin in their system, a hormone that researchers believe plays a role in regulating appetite and fat.
  • Compared with breastfed babies, formula-fed infants gain weight more rapidly in the first weeks of life. This rapid weight gain is associated with later obesity.

Breastfeeding may lower your baby's risk of SIDS

  • A large German study published in 2009 found that breastfeeding – either exclusively or partially – is associated with a lower risk of sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). The researchers concluded that exclusive breastfeeding at 1 month of age cut the risk of SIDS in half.

 

Being a Working Mum

 

According to the Center for American Progress, "women now make up half of all workers in the United States, with nearly 4 in 10 homes having a mom that is also a working mother." Being a full-time working mother can lead to feelings of guilt and stress because of divided attention between work and family.

The key is to focus on a plan, get organized, and find the right balance between profession and parenthood. The key is also to embrace your short-falls as a mother (we all have them), and refocus your preciously finite energy on what truly matters: ensuring that your kids know they’re wanted, loved, and loveable, no matter what - and that they benefit from having you as a role model on how to live a rewarding life.

We have worked on some easy-to-follow steps on how to make sure both your career and your family flourish:

Let Go of the Guilt

Rather than dwell on how you're not with your child, think about how your role in the company is benefitting the family. Perhaps you can afford certain classes or educational opportunities for your children or you're able to put away savings for college.

Accept trade-offs as inevitable

Create a list of the reasons you work – money, satisfaction, sanity - to provide a helpful reminder of your personal convictions when your work keeps you from attending a concert or compels you to outsource the organization of your child’s birthday party. While I’m often not able to be as involved with my kids’ activities as might seem ideal, I am very clear that my kids, my family and myself are ultimately all better off because I have a rewarding career outside the home.

Find Quality Childcare

Ask your network of friends and family for references to nannies, babysitters, and daycare centers. Create a list of criteria that are important and then schedule time to interview qualified childcare providers or to tour local daycares. We recommend hiring nannies with a history of long-term commitments to families. This shows they have excellent experience and are adaptable to various age groups, caring for newborns and older children who need homework help.

Lower your bar to ‘good enough’

The bar on what it means to be a ‘great parent’ has been gradually moving up, and now it’s so ridiculously high that we’ve set ourselves up to forever fall short in scaling it. Accepting that for the most part, good enough is good enough, takes enormous pressure off of us to be the idealized photo-shopped image of the ‘perfect’ parent – the mom that the magazines imply that we ‘should’ be (there’s that word again!)  Giving up some elusive quest to be a super-mother who does everything ‘just right’ is the only way we can ever have a chance to enjoy the journey of child rearing, without being anxious, guilt-ridden and exhausted. After all, it’s who we are for our children – happy, good-humored, and a role model for the values we believe in – that ultimately impacts them more than how closely we, our homes, or our meals resemble the front cover of women’s magazines. The reality is that you do not have to be a perfect parent to be a great parent.

Don’t dilute your presence with distraction

We can be with our kids 24/7 and yet never be fully present to them.  While ‘turning off’ from work and other distractions is easier said than done, it’s important to be intentional about being fully present to your children whenever you are with them by minimizing the multi-tasking as much as humanly possible. Take your kids out for hot chocolate at a local café as a ‘special treat’, which removes you from the magnetic pull of a home office.  

Make the Mornings Easier

Avoid starting the day on a frazzled note by getting organized the night before. Pack the kids' lunches, lay out their clothes (plus your own), and have everyone shower. "You should also decide what to make for breakfast, and repack the diaper bag, backpacks, purses, or work bags to be placed by the door. Look over the next day's to-do list and divide the schedule, determining which parent gets the kids dressed, buys necessary groceries, and cooks the meals.

Create and Organize a Family Calendar

Figure out your family's priorities. A calendar can include dates when bills are due, a chore chart for the kids, a list of school and family events, extracurricular activities, birthdays, and more. Staying organized is also about having a clean environment. Wiss advises having a "family command station" near an entranceway, where important papers and documents are placed, along with keys, chargers, batteries and petty cash. Carving out dedicated spots will save time and improve efficiency in your home.

 

Terrible Twos

 

The terrible twos is a normal stage in which toddlers begin to struggle between their reliance on adults and their desire for independence. One minute your child might be clinging to you, and the next he or she is running in the opposite direction.

Part of the reason why two-year-olds are given such a bum rap is because they are stuck. They’re no longer babies but they probably still have problems communicating well. When they’re in the midst of a meltdown, it is difficult to reason with a two-year-old.

Two-year-olds undergo major motor, intellectual, social and emotional changes. Their vocabularies are growing, they're eager to do things on their own, and they're beginning to discover that they're expected to follow certain rules. However, most 2-year-olds still aren't able to move as swiftly as they'd like, clearly communicate their needs or control their feelings. This can lead to frustration, misbehavior and tantrums.

Don’t wait to deal with issues which are unacceptable. Before your child reaches this stage, decide how you’re going to act the first time your child throws a tantrum because they didn’t get their way. And be consistent in how you handle the infraction each and every time.

Plan your daily activities around them. This means avoiding trips out to the store when it’s too close to their naptime. It also means being sure you have a snack with you in case they get hungry while you are out and about

Many two-year-olds don’t like change. If this describes your child, try to let them know ahead of time what is going to happen.

Acknowledge their feelings of frustration, anger or sadness. Explain that feelings are normal but that acting in a way which will hurt others is not. Help them find the words they need to express themselves. Hold them, tell them a joke or speak to them in a soft voice to soothe them.

Understand your toddler’s abilities. Recognize they are growing up (often faster than you’d like) and they are able to do things they couldn’t in the past. Give them activities which will allow them to show off what they can do. Make a big deal out of their putting their clothes in their dresser or helping you set the table. Find things they can do which will give them a reason to shine and for you to be proud of their achievements.

Babies and Recycling



Babies need so much stuff. But what do you do with it all when they outgrow everything? Turns out, there are a lot of baby accessories you can and should recycle instead of tossing them in the trash. And there are plenty of ways to recycle safely and easily.

So what baby gear can you recycle -- and how? Here are 14 of the most common baby items that you can avoid sending to a landfill:

  1. Car seats
  2. Cribs
  3. Strollers
  4. Breast pumps
  5. Baby bottles
  6. Baby bathtubs
  7. Baby clothes
  8. Baby food jars
  9. Measuring scoops and spoons
  10. Burp clothes
  11. Books
  12. Shoes
  13. Baby wipe containers
  14. Diaper bags

Looking for somewhere to donate? Check out True North

Guarding Against Child Abduction

 

Danger can lurk anywhere and everywhere. Many everyday dangers are overlooked - train yourself to be aware of them and take the necessary steps to protect your child at all times.

It is essential to educate and warn your child of the dangers of abduction surrounding them at home, at school, at the park, and even online. Getting an early start on these safety measures can make all the difference. In addition to teaching them what abduction and kidnapping is and who is capable of doing it, it also necessary to teach your children what to do if they are ever placed in such a predicament.

Some interesting statistics:

  • Most kids who are reported missing have run
  • Most are taken by a family member or an acquaintance; 25% of kids are taken by strangers
  • Almost all kids kidnapped by strangers are taken by men, and about two thirds of stranger abductions involve female children
  • Most abducted kids are in their teens
  • Kids are rarely abducted from school grounds

First and foremost, let your child know they should alert an adult if they suspect any suspicious behaviour. As most abductions are committed by people the child is familiar with, spotting inconsistencies in their behaviour and alerting authorities is essential to child safety.

Keeping an open and non-judgmental dialogue with them can always help you gain as much information as you can to keep them safe. This way your children can learn to trust you and will want to inform you about their lives at all times. If a child does not have a trusting background at home, they become more vulnerable to getting lured into danger by strangers, because they may not have the support from their families that they need.

Teaching your child who to trust and what types of people not to trust is essential in helping them protect themselves. Many stranger kidnappings occur when kidnappers lure children into their cars or their reach by telling them they have candy, a lost puppy, or need help with directions. Teach them to be wary of unknown cars that pull up beside them and not to speak to anyone in the cars they do not know. Make a pact that goes through the steps of what to do if someone other than you were to ever pick your child up from school or extracurricular activity.

Many children are scared or simply trust the predator they are with, but tell your child that if any stranger or even someone they know is taking them away and you didn’t tell them about it beforehand, they must act out and show people they are in trouble. Children need to make a scene wherever they are to get other people’s attention.

If a child gets lost in the store or in the mall, with or without a predator following them or trying to lure them in, they should always contact a cashier, manager, or the nearest security guard. Teach them to never approach a shopper they do not know, and to never go into the parking lot as a safe haven. You can make an agreement with your child before going into the mall as well, establishing a meeting place if anything does happen.

Avoid clothing or key chains with your child’s name on them. If a child hears their name called it is easy for them to let their guard down and believe that the person calling them is someone they know.

Then there is the matter of protecting your child online. Modern technology is beneficial for both kids and adults, but it can also be very dangerous. There is a constant need to educate their children about online safety. First and foremost, the best thing that parents can do to help prevent abductions from online predators is to stay informed.

Parents must be adaptable and remain up-to-date on new technologies. By staying up-to-date on the threats your children may encounter online, you can help prevent them from getting in dangerous situations by talking to them beforehand. You can talk to your child or teen about the dangers and risks of each, and how online predators can still lure them in and stage kidnappings. Staying informed and reading up on parental blockers and safe websites is important in protecting your child even when you are not there.

There are many helpful sites and tools that can help filter your child’s online experience. You can use Google to set up alerts if your child’s name ever gets mentioned online.

Emergency Contact Numbers

 

Our advice: prepare for an emergency is before one happens. Make sure your family knows emergency phone numbers and your kids know how to place a call for help. It is easy to become disoriented and upset, so you need to have all important phone numbers readily available ahead of time.

Make sure you us a large print so it will be easy for kids to read. Use a pen with dark-colored ink or type it on the computer. And keep several copies around the house - post one near every telephone in the house and on the refrigerator. And keep one in the car as well.

Program emergency numbers into your cellphone. And make sure that people who come to the house to watch your kids familiarise themselves with the list. Also include known allergies (especially to any medicines), medical conditions, and insurance information for all members of the family.

These are the numbers we suggest including:

emergency medical services: In most places this is 911, but your community may have its own number.

  • Poison control center
  • Hospital emergency room
  • Fire department
  • Police department
  • Your child's doctor
  • Parents' work
  • Parents' cellphones
  • Neighbours and/or relatives

Pharmacy

Milestones and When to Look Out for Them

 

While the early stages of being a parent might feel like a blur of feeding, nappy changes, rocking to sleep and listening to the cries, from about 2 months you will start to notice some obvious and pretty exciting developmental changes.

These are the developments you get to look forward to, and when you can start looking out for them:

Smiles

You may spotted the odd fleeting smile but now the real reward starts – your baby will start to smile in response to you from around 2 months J

Laughing

From about 4 months you can start looking forward to the sweetest sound you’ll ever hear

Sleeping through the night

Probably the most exciting progression for new parents! Usually between the 4 and 6 month mark.

Sitting

Around 5-6 months your little one will be able to sit up with some support, and alone from around 7-9 months

Crawling

This game changer comes at around 8 months. Get baby-proofing!

Waving

By 9 months most babies start to make the link between sounds, gestures and meaning

Standing

By 12 months, most babies begin to stand briefly without support.

First steps

Possibly the biggest milestone to record, your baby is likely to take his first steps anytime between 9 – 17 months.

First words

Usually happens around the one year mark