Entries by Jana

Dear Mum and Dad, A Letter From Your 4 Month Old

Dear Mum and Dad,

With my 4 months of life experience I have come to 2 main conclusions:
1. You guys are expert parents. Seriously, you know just how to love me well!
And 2. Being a baby is a lot of work. It’s a full time job for me, but thankfully your support and encouragement makes it feel less like work and more like play!

You see, I have been a detective this month. There are these things called hands, and I can’t figure them out. They wiggle and squeeze and sometimes even scratch. But every once in a while I can wrangle them up and hold them captive in my mouth. I am not too worried about those hands though; they can’t be dangerous if you touch them and hold them. Mum has even named them “Piggie” and sings me a silly song about them. “This little piggie went to the market, this little piggie went home…”

Dear Mum and Dad, A Letter From Your 2 Month Old

Dear Mum and Dad,

You’re so good at this parenting thing! Your overflowing love has been evident through our snuggles, playtime, and conversations over these past 2 months.

Have you noticed some of my latest tricks? One is that I can smile at you! Good thing Dad is an expert at silly faces and Mom gives the best baby tickles. Another trick is that I can open up my hands! Instead of keeping them clenched, I have begun to to relax them more, which will help me grasp your fingers even better.

Dear Mum and Dad, A Letter From Your 1 Month Old

Dear Mum and Dad,

Can you believe we’ve been together for one month already? I bet you hardly remember what it was like without me in your life!

I love to listen to your voices. I’ve been listening to both of you since before I was born, so it’s easy to recognize the sound of your voice. I like it when you talk to me before you pick me up from my crib or when we lay on the floor to play. My body goes still so I can concentrate on your voice. I also like to hear music or musical toys. It really helps when you talk and sing to me while I’m crying. Hearing your voice assures me that you are going to make me feel better. I trust you so much!

Dear Mum and Dad, A Letter From Your Newborn

Dear Mum and Dad,

I’m finally here! You waited many, many months for my arrival and now I’m just a few days old. I probably weigh between 5lbs and 9lbs,. My tiny body is between 18 and 20.5 inches long, and my head measures between 12.5 and 14.2 inches in circumference. I can tell that you love me so much because of the way you snuggle me, kiss me, and take gentle care of me.

You’ve probably noticed that I like to eat every 2-4 hours for a total of 8-12 daily. I know that’s a lot, but my tummy is growing bigger every day! I like to nurse frequently, or will eat 2 ounces from my bottle ever few hours. Make sure my bottles are clean and sterilized. It’s okay if I fall asleep while nursing, simply feed me when I wake up next.

Creative Ways to Be Active With Your Child (and why your kids need exercise!)

According to USA’s Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, kids who exercise are less likely to be anxious or depressed or stressed. They are more likely to excel at academics, including their ability to concentrate and focus their attention in the classroom. They build up strength, endurance, healthy muscles and bones through regular fitness. It’s recommended that school-aged children are physically active for at least one hour per day.

As a parent, you can lead by example and teach your children the value of self-care. Prioritize exercise, fitness, and healthy habits in your life and your child will observe the trend and follow along. (Note: Check out Dr. Melanie Lane’s book The 9 Daily Habits of Healthy People if you need some inspiration to!) Not only is exercise important for your child’s health, it’s also a great way for you to get active with your children! From my experience, kids of all ages love these activities, and often request to “play” them!

The Benefits of Regular Date Nights

I will never forget the day I tucked little 5 year old Ali into bed. I had known her since before she was born and babysat her and her siblings every week. This particular night was like many other where we had dinner, played imaginative games, and read books before I tucked her in. I pulled up her covers and made sure she had her “nigh-nee” blanket. I pulled her hair behind her ears, gave her a soft kiss on her forehead, and said, “I love you.”

But as I turned to leave she called out, “What?” To be honest, it was past her bedtime and I wanted to leave the room so she could get enough rest, but of course I turned around to her sweet voice. She began to ask me why I said, “I love you.” I told her that I said it because I truly loved her. Ali had a confused look on her face and asked, “But why? You aren’t my family. You don’t have to love me.” And I told her that she was right. I didn’t have to, but I chose to.

The Basics of Behavior Modification, and Why You Should Try It Out

You are probably more familiar with behavior modification than you think! The basic principles were created by the famous psychologist B.F. Skinner in the 1950s. He observed that behaviors are more likely to be repeated if they are reinforced with a reward, and other behaviors would stop occurring if punished with a consequence. It’s important to note that reinforcers, also called rewards, must be something that is rewarding to the child. And punishments, also know as a consequences, must be negative, such as a spanking or losing a toy for the rest of the day.

4 Parenting Styles According to Psychologists

In the tale Goldilocks and the Three Bears, Goldilocks goes to take a nap after eating porridge and breaking chairs. But discovers that Papa Bear’s bed is too hard, Mama Bear’s bed is too soft, but Baby Bear’s bed is just right. In the same way, Diana Baumrind, a well known developmental psychologist in the 1960s, classified parenting into three different styles: Authoritarian/Strict (“too hard”), Permissive/Indulgent (“too soft”), and Authoritative (“just right”). Later, the Uninvolved (“too distant”) style was added to complete the set.
Which type of parenting style do you currently exhibit, and which would you like to display?

Simple Ways To Promote Your Child’s Independence

Children crave independence. Any parent of a toddler or young child or tween or teen…basically a parent with a child of any age recognizes this desire for independence!

I believe that independence is freedom to make my own decisions, based on what is best for me while also respecting others. I believe independence is not having to be dependent on someone else. And I believe that independence means being true to who I am.