Archives for November 2012

10 iPhone Apps for Managing Baby’s Schedule

When you become a parent, it can seem like your entire schedule shifts to accommodate the one set by your precious new bundle of joy. For today’s productivity and scheduling obsessed world, tracking the times when Baby eats the most, sleeps the best, and goes through the most diapers is a bit of a booming business. These 10 iPhone apps can help you turn the mobile device you use to manage your own schedule into one that also tracks, monitors and establishes the one that your new baby adheres to.

  1. Eat Sleep: Simple Baby Tracking – Part of managing your baby’s schedule is learning how to track feeding, sleeping and diapering trends so that you can modify your own schedule to meet her demands. This free app is simple to use and remarkably pared down, free of extraneous features that can slow a busy parent down. There is also a note-taking feature included so that you can record special events and circumstances. Eat Sleep also supports more than one child’s schedule.
  2. Baby Connect (Activity Logger) – One of the most popular and comprehensive apps for new parents in the App Store, Baby Connect allows you to set notifications so that you never miss an appointment with the pediatrician, a vaccination, or a scheduled feeding. You can also track charts and trending reports, along with weekly averages.
  3. Baby Tracker from WhatToExpect.com – The trusted folks at WhatToExpect.com bring parents this free app, which allows you to monitor your baby during her first year to make sure that she’s hitting milestones on schedule and getting everything she needs to grow and thrive. Keep up with feedings, diaper changes and sleeping schedules, and access practical parenting advice with this app.
  4. My Baby Today – The checklists, daily calendar and photo album built into the free My Baby Today app allow you to manage every aspect of your baby’s schedule, including feedings and nap times. There is also a selection of weekly activity suggestions, advice and safety information included.
  5. Baby Tracker: Nursing – Keeping up with your baby’s breastfeeding schedule is a snap with this $4.99 app, which manages and tracks nursing sessions with just a few taps. Forget about clunky notebooks, timers and breastfeeding journals; just use the mobile device you already have at the tips of your fingers.
  6. iBaby Feed Timer – If you want to determine how long, on average, that your baby feeds so that you can schedule accordingly, you’ll need to track and time her feeding sessions over the course of a few days. With this $1.99 app, you can manage every aspect of timing feedings and tracking the length of sessions, so that you’re able to easily determine the average amount of time she spends feeding.
  7. Happy Baby Schedule – If you’re using the Happy Baby Schedule method of sleep training, this $0.99 app is an invaluable supplemental tool. The app will help you schedule feedings and time them for optimal duration, so that you’re able to establish a functional and reliable schedule during her first eight weeks that carries through her infancy.
  8. Total Baby – An Apple Staff Favorite and featured in the September 2012 issue of Parenting Magazine, Total Baby is one of the best logging and tracking apps for babies in the App Store. Parents and caregivers alike can quickly and easily use this $4.99 application to time, track and log every aspect of a baby’s schedule. Ideal for both single children and multiples, Total Baby manages everything from diapers to bath time.
  9. Baby Activity Logger – Sleep trending charts, daily activity tracking, and schedule monitoring are all a breeze with this $4.99 app, which is designed to be easily navigated with one hand and to keep all of your baby’s relevant scheduling information in one place.
  10. Baby Pack & Go Packing List – If your baby is the social type, getting her out the door on time and keeping her on schedule can be a challenge. This $0.99 app reminds you of everything you need to pack to make every outing a successful one, ensuring that you’re always prepared and on time.

Despite your best efforts to establish a schedule for your baby that works with your existing one, you may find that you’re forced to adapt to her schedule, rather than vice versa. It’s best to be as flexible as possible in order to accommodate her needs, rather than struggling to establish a schedule that leaves you both irritable and exhausted. These apps are great ways to monitor and track the schedule she’s creating, however, and can be effective tools to for gradually modifying it to better suit your needs.

The Things Kids Say About New Babies

When a firstborn child is faced with the prospect of day-to-day life with a newborn sibling, their reactions can be widely varied. Even if you’ve prepared for the birth of a new baby diligently in the months leading up to her birth, you shouldn’t be surprised when your older child reacts in a somewhat unexpected way. Kids’ reactions are as varied as their personalities, and these are some of the most common things that older siblings say about the new baby in the house.

  • “I’m a baby, too!” – When an older sibling is in the throes of toddlerhood and is forced to accept life with a newborn baby in the house, it’s not uncommon at all for her to regress a bit. Refusing to complete tasks for themselves that they were handling competently before the baby’s birth is actually your child’s way of ensuring that you’re still there to help her, and is such normal behavior that it’s almost stereotypical.
  • “She cries too much!” – Even if it wasn’t so long ago that your older child was crying at the drop of a hat, the amount of crying that a newborn does can be enough to draw protests out of him. This is especially true if an older sibling shares a room with the new baby.
  • “Mommy, I need you!” – In order to make sure that you’re still available to her, your toddler child may become more demanding immediately following the birth of a younger sibling. While this clinginess can be difficult to manage, it’s important that you don’t scold her or entreat her to “stop acting like a baby.” This reaction is more likely to cause your older child to feel real resentment for her new sibling than it is to curb the behavior.
  • “I don’t like her!” – Sleep deprivation, losing the starring role in the family, and being forced to consider the needs of someone who is younger and more dependent can cause your child to declare that he doesn’t like his new sibling, or make other derogatory and derisive comments about her. It’s best to make sure that your older child is getting as much one-on-one time and relaxation as possible if this behavior presents itself, otherwise the resentment could linger and become problematic.
  • “I’ll take care of her!” – Children who are a bit older when the newest addition to the family arrives often feel a strong attachment and sense of protectiveness over the baby, leading them to make a concerted effort to take care of her needs. If your child is insistent upon providing assistance or completing small tasks to “take care” of your child, it’s a very good sign, despite how frustrating it can become when they insist on performing baby-related chores they simply aren’t able to manage on their own.
  • “I can do things that she can’t!” – It’s not abnormal for your toddler, preschooler or early-elementary aged child to take every available opportunity to remind his parents that he’s physically, intellectually and emotionally more advanced than the new baby that seems to be taking everyone’s attention.
  • “Can I help?” – Whether it’s the novelty of caring for a newborn or a genuine desire to be helpful, older children will often ask if they can help parents and childcare providers care for a new infant.
  • “I made her smile!” – Despite assertions that newborn smiles are the result of gas, your older child is likely to fervently believe that they’ve accomplished the Herculean task of making the new baby smile, should the corners of their mouth so much as twitch upwards.
  • “She likes me!” – Discovering that a newborn doesn’t wail when she’s being held by an older sibling can be enough to convince the older child that the newest member of the family likes him, a source of endless pride for most youngsters.

While regression, jealousy and similar reactions can be very frustrating, especially when you’re trying to juggle the demands of a newborn against the needs of your older children, it’s important to keep in mind that such a major shift in the fabric and routines of your family can be a bit traumatic for your child. Try to be as patient as possible, avoiding the urge to scold or punish him for the way that he feels.

30 Blogs with the Best Baby Shower Favors

With the advent of the Internet and the rise in popularity of blogging, there’s now an entire corner of the web dedicated to providing hints, tips and ideas for planning great parties, entertaining friends and family, and celebrating special occasions. From professional party planners to those who simply have a gift for organizing festive events, bloggers from all over the world come together in the blogosphere to share their party planning knowledge. These 30 blogs offer great ideas for shower and party favors, which can easily be adapted to a baby shower theme with a bit of ingenuity and imagination.

Wooden Shower Favors

Depending upon the theme of the baby shower you’re planning, you may find that wooden favors best compliment the established décor. These five blogs offer whimsical and memorable shower favors that are simple to modify and customize so that they blend seamlessly with the rest of your festive decorations.

Glassware Baby Shower Favors

There’s something about glass that lends an air of sophistication and understated glamour to any celebratory event, and baby showers are no exception. Whether they’re discussing the popularity of a particular style of glass favor as the sole subject of their post, or are simply tucking different glassware favors into the body of a post filled with other shower planning ideas and tips, these five bloggers provide some valuable insights regarding baby shower favors made of glass.

Edible Shower Favors

While edible favors are meant to be eaten, and, as such, will not provide your guests with a memento that marks the occasion, they’re also very popular favor options with both hostesses and guests alike. These five blog posts offer plenty of cute ideas for edible baby shower favors, from personalized candy bars to creative packages filled with snacks.

DIY and Crafty Baby Shower Favors

Though most baby shower favors are essentially “do-it-yourself” projects, these five blog posts offer up some creative and exciting ideas for baby shower favors that allow you to completely customize your offerings in order to match them perfectly with all of the other decorations.

Unique Baby Shower Favor Ideas

Quirky moms-to-be may prefer a baby shower favor that’s a bit different from the more popular offerings, which is where these five blog entries shine. From flower seeds to signature scents, there’s something in one of these posts that’s sure to get your creative juices flowing.

Shower Favors for Multiples

An impending birth of multiples is exponentially more exciting, and deserves to be celebrated twice or even three times as much! These five ideas are designed around the idea of celebrating the birth of more than one baby, and are adorable ways to commemorate such a momentous occasion.