Helpful guides

A few things that have helped us with our kid.

Miles turns 11 months old today! Eleven. Months. I can hardly believe it.

I feel compelled to share the wisdom I’ve acquired during this time, but to be honest with you, most days I still feel like I have no idea what the hell I’m doing.

Perhaps instead of wisdom, I should just share some of the key resources that have helped us figure out what to do with with our baby.

There are so many voices out there, and I know that I have been overwhelmed online while on various Googling frenzies about Miles. These apps and accounts have helped us, but of course, doing your own research to determine what will work best for you is always the best course of action.

Baby sitting in high chair eating food

Solid Starts is an incredibly helpful resource when it comes to feeding Miles. It’s a simple and detailed guide about what foods are appropriate to feed him, and they also show you different ways to serve food as well. Their ‘First Foods‘ database is amazing, and I have been referring to it since I started feeding Miles solids at five months.

Sleeping baby on a bed

I should preface by saying Miles is a little co-sleeper still, but the Huckleberry app has been a total godsend when it comes to figuring out when to put Miles to bed. I use the app to record when Miles takes naps and goes to bed, and the app calculates his next approximate bedtime based on age-appropriate wake windows. Now naps and bedtime have become significantly less stressful, because I don’t have to rely solely on his body language to determine when he’s good to go night-night. Bless.

Crying baby in a crib

I didn’t really know about developmental leaps until a friend told me about the Wonder Weeks app. The app (which is originally a book) tracks your babies developmental leaps, and gives you a list of signs and behaviours to look for and expect during this time.

This app in particular was amazing for my mental health, because when babies are going through leaps, they can sometimes feel like a totally different baby all of a sudden. Their new behaviours can also make you feel like a bad parent, because things that soothed them before just stop working. It has been so much easier to understand what he might be going through, and reading about his leaps also helps me to prepare appropriate activities for him. It’s also pretty cool to watch as he learns new things!

These are really more of an honourable mention, since I am either in the early stages of using these, or Miles is not quite old enough.

Sign ‘n Grow helps parents communicate with their babies through sign language. Miles says “dada” and (sometimes) “mama,” but that’s about it right now. So far, we’ve put sign for “more” and “all done” into practice at meal times, and I THINK he’s understanding me. I usually get smiles and claps after I sign “all done!” I’m hoping to introduce him to more signs soon. I’ll keep you posted!

It’s WAY too early for Miles to try a lot of this, but @play_at_home_mummy is a great resource for fun, educational activities to play with your baby/toddler.

Another account that I’m learning a lot from is @biglittlefeelings. Miles is already very opinionated and a little dramatic, so I’m preparing myself for toddler tantrums and trying to negotiate/reason with a little person.

Look, I know that we aren’t going to be perfect parents, but it’s nice to have some guides along the way, especially when it really feels like we aren’t doing anything right. I hope that any of you new parents or parents-to-be find even one of these resources useful. Also, if you have any that you’d like to share, since we’re all struggling right now, please leave a comment!

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