Friday, January 16, 2015

The No-Sippy, No-Straw Solution!

Baby girl WILL NOT drink from a sippy cup.  It's probably due to the fact that she has never really been forced to take a bottle, but now that she's eating solid food three times a day, she NEEDS to drink some water!  We've tried Nuby and Munchkin brands, both soft spouts, and all she wants to do is chew on the spout.  I'm guessing some eventually gets in, because her bib is soaked by the time we take it away from her.  We've also tried straws, and she will let me just pour some into her mouth from the straw, but actually drinking from the straw?  Forget about it!  I am starting to get worried for when she does eventually wean and needs to take liquids from something other than me!  After researching other sippy cups that might work for our stubborn little angel, I came up with a solution of my own.

Introducing...the No-Sippy, No-Straw Solution!

Inspired by the spoutless cups designed for toddlers that I found on Amazon, I used a small square of Glad Press 'n Seal and placed it over a regular cup.  I then poked a small hole in the covering.  The hole in the picture actually turned out to be a bit too big and I will make it smaller next time.  Next, because I am dealing with an 8 month old, I held the cup for her and allowed her to drink from it.  The Press 'n Seal kept me from pouring a too-large amount into her mouth.  She wanted to try to hold the cup herself, but without handles it was a little difficult.  I think this is also the perfect solution for toddlers transitioning from a sippy to a regular cup.  I learned the hard way that kids need to learn how to drink from a regular cup before they go to preschool! 

Do you have a stubborn, no-sippy, no-straw baby?  What solutions do you have?  If you try this, let me know how it works for you!  

Monday, January 5, 2015

Sensory Bags for Babies

I got "pinspired" this weekend and made a sensory bag for my 8 month old.  I can't even believe I have an 8 month old. Where the heck does time go?!  Yesterday was one of those days where it seemed whatever I did, I could not keep her happy or entertained for more than 10 minutes.  She got a TON of new toys at Christmas.  We worked our way through each toy until there were no more left.  Instead of rotating back through, I hopped on Pinterest and looked up "Activities for babies."  Of course, I got a million and one pins that I didn't have time to go through, but a sensory bag activity caught my eye and I decided to go for it.

My sensory bag was inspired by Plain Vanilla Mom but she used hair gel in her bag, and let's be honest here, I don't even dry my hair let alone put product in it, so I didn't have any hair gel laying around the house.  I did have dish soap, though, and that is what I used.  All you need is a gallon-sized Ziploc bag, some duct tape, dish soap, and little trinkets you can put inside the bag.  Everything I used I had in my house.

I first duct taped the sides of the bag.  Next, I dumped in the dish soap.  I used about 1/3 of the bottle shown here.  Then I scrounged up as many little trinkets I could find.  We had just cleaned the play room the day before, or else I probably wouldn't have had to look so hard!  I ended up putting in some plastic easter grass, a nickel, a penny, a square of bubble wrap, some plastic paper clips, some water beads, and (my favorite!) some glitter.  After adding everything inside the bag, I zipped it and sealed it with two layers of duct tape.  

Finally, I let baby girl have at it!  She loved it!  I had to show her what to do at first, but she loved smushing the dish soap around and feeling all of the different textures.  She had to be very closely supervised, though, because she does still enjoy putting everything in her mouth.  Those two teeth she has are very sharp and I didn't want her to puncture the bag.  A happy accident that occurred since I used dish soap is the more she played with it, it started to form bubbles.  That was fun for her (and my five-year-old) to see.  

Thursday, January 1, 2015

A New Year

I don't think I've ever been so conflicted in my feelings before.  2014 was the toughest year of my life.  I was pregnant during the first months of 2014, and though I was very much looking forward to our baby girl's arrival, I was so very sick.  I was suffering from constant headaches, was under so much stress at work, and was beginning to deal with climbing blood pressure.  While my ob/gyn insisted I was fine, I knew differently.  We welcomed our baby girl in April, three weeks before her due date, and under very difficult circumstances.  After being rushed to the hospital in an ambulance, I was diagnosed with HELLP syndrome and had to deliver her immediately, for both her health and mine.  Though small, she was perfectly healthy.  I, however, was not.  With extremely low blood platelets that wouldn't rise, and very high liver enzymes and a blood pressure that wouldn't decrease, I endured an 8-day hospital stay.  After an MRI and MRA, I was also informed that I had suffered several acute strokes at least two weeks prior due to my extremely high blood pressure for an extended period of time.  My daughter's birth will always be linked to this horrific time in my life.  Such a joyous occasion tarnished.  Thus, my conflicted feelings.  While I am so ready to bid farewell to 2014 and welcome 2015 with open arms, I can't help but feel guilty.  Is it right that I feel this way about the year my daughter was born?  Since I took a leave of absence from my job during this time, I have been very present in my daughter's first 8 months of life and we have an indescribable bond.  I don't want to just dismiss this time and say good riddance to this year, but on the other hand, I am very much looking forward to a healthy 2015.

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