|Newborn Tips#1: Don't Hush-A-Bye-Baby|
|You don't have to be quiet while the baby is sleeping. The womb is loud, and newborns are used to the noise. When ours first came home, we watched television and I would vacuum, wash dishes and talk on the phone around her while she slept. She got used to sleeping with noise, and I could get stuff done. I am still able to vacuum in her room while she sleeps (she is 14 months), and she is peaceful and well rested when she wakes up.|
|Newborn Tips#2: Soothe Your Wailing Newborn|
|When my baby cries, I comfort her by patting her back in a heartbeat-like rhythm. That helps her burp more quickly, and it also helps her relax if she's crying from insecurity. If this doesn’t work, I also try one or all of Dr. Harvey Karp's five calming moves: swaddling, shushing, holding her on her side, swinging her or letting her suck. Sometimes it takes all six!|
Trying to get your kids to eat healthy is usually very trying for even the most patient mom. Ask me I know. Even when you spend hours trying to make it look pretty and edible by hiding all the green stuff away, they still pull up their little noses in disgust. In fact trying to get my child to eat anything that isn't white is a very trying experience.
Although we would like to hope that Orange Juice and Nic Naks make a good wholesome meal, unfortunately this is not the case. It is quite important that growing children get good nutrition as they grow. Their diets can also make a huge difference to how they feel and their ability to learn.
Here are some tips that may or may not help you in your endeavor to get your kids to eat healthy.
Serve them small portions as they only have small tummies. If you serve them an entire plate of meat, rice and vegies, they will probably give up before they even start. Try cut up some nutritional food into bite size portions for them, like cubes of cheese, cherry tomatoes, strawberries, a few peas and some tiny triangles of bread or toast. At least this way they will be likely to eat at least half of it.
Become an artist, as children eat something because it looks good. Never underestimate the power of a cookie cutter when it comes to making sandwiches. Even something as simple as making a smiley face out of the food on the plate helps.
If they hate the taste of something, like broccoli, don't sweat it trying to force them to eat it. You will just end up giving yourself grey hair and unnecessary stress. There are countless alternatives to any food, and there is bound to be one your little one will like.
|Newborn Tips#3: Help Get Your Baby to Latch|
|If you are having latch-on issues while breastfeeding your baby, you can use breast shields to help the process. This was a wonderful tip that I learned from my lactation consultant. I had to use the shields for an entire month before my baby would latch onto my own nipple without them. Had it not been for the breast shields, I would not have been able to continue nursing my baby.|
|Newborn Tips#4: Get Prepped|
|At 3 weeks, babies’ days and nights become more predictable, and you can focus on yourself in addition to your newborn. One way to do that is by reducing your stress level - and having everything ready for your hungry baby and yourself is one way to do that. Start by prepping for the next feeding as soon as the previous one is over. For example, after an 11 p.m. feeding, get ready for the 2 a.m. one by prepping whatever you need for feeding and putting out fresh drinking water for yourself so you don’t have anything to think about in the middle of the night. During the day, take advantage of the baby’s naps to work out, shower or catch up on e-mail, or take a nap too.|
Don't worry if they want tomatoe sauce with everything. At least it is a good form of lycopene and provided it's a good brand that is low in salt and sugar, it is fine if it helps them eat that piece of meat. If they have a sweet tooth, try making a milkshake out of banannas and fruit and a little ice cream. Children also love ice lollies, so make these out of pureed fruit.
Never force your child to finish everything on his or her plate. You are merely encouraging them to overeat by ignoring those vital 'I'm full' signals from their brains.
Tell your children that the deal is that they have to taste a food at least once before saying they don't like it. Sometimes they surprise themselves.
Take them shopping with you, and let them choose a dinner. They will feel more in control if they are involved in the decision making process.
Let them experiment in the kitchen. Most kids will eat anything that they themselves have made. Encourage the use of healthy ingredients and of course supervision. There are tons of kid friendly recipes on Google.
It's okay to lie through your teeth in some instances. For instance if they ask if the soup has onions in it you are allowed to say no if it means that they will eat it.
Never offer more than two or three choices, or you will be asking for trouble. If they don't finish their food, simply put it away for later, then if they complain that they are hungry in an hour, you can whip it out again. If they are truly hungry they will eat it. Don't then go and substitute it with a chocolate biscuit.
The trick is being clever, resourceful, as well as tough. Stick to your decisions, after all it is their health you are looking after.
|Newborn Tips#5: Keeping Your Baby Awake During Feedings|
|When our baby was eating slowly and sleepily, my husband and I would massage her cheek to stimulate her to eat faster. A gentle stroke with a fingertip on her cheek was all it took, and on those long sleepless nights, this simple trick was a godsend! Our friends have found it works great with their infants too. When babies eat efficiently until they're full before going to sleep, they sleep for longer between feedings. And that means you’re both likely to be calmer!|
|Newborn Tips#6: Help Your Baby Bond with Dad|
|Make sure your baby has ample time alone with Daddy. His touch and voice are different than yours, and this will begin a bonding process and give you a break. Plus, it gets the baby used to being with someone other than you. The first few times can be hard. Make sure your baby is fed and well rested, as this will give you at least one or two hours before you're needed again. Then leave Dad and the baby alone. If you stay nearby, make sure the baby can’t see or hear you, and resist the urge to go into the room and "fix" things if she starts crying. Your baby cries with you and you experiment to find out what's wrong. Dads need time to do this too - in their own way. By allowing this time, your child will learn there is more than one way to receive comfort, which will help immensely when you leave your baby with a sitter or another family member for the first time. You could have your partner bathe her, put her to bed or just read or talk to her.|