Sunday, April 15, 2012

Video Post: Working Moms and Attachment Theory

I believe strongly in Attachment Theory as taught by John Bowlby and Mary Ainsworth who built upon his theory by conducting what is strangely called "The Strange Situation" because young children were put in a strange situation by the mother leaving and the researchers would watch the infants reaction WHEN THE PARENT/Caregiver RETURNED. If they cried but were comforted by their caregiver's return and would go off and play, they were secure; if they cried but could not be comforted by the caregiver but instead clung to the mother and wouldn't go play, they were anxiously attached;  if they didn't cry and barely seemed to notice when their caregiver left or returned, they were avoidantly attached.   For my video post on the subject,go to

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Reader Response: The Truth About Cohabitation

A reader recently told me that he and his girlfriend were thinking about having children, but he was wondering if cohabitation rather than marriage would have any negative effects on their relationship as well as in their parenting skills.  Unfortunately, the research on cohabitation hasn’t been too favorable, but that doesn’t mean that there won’t be cohabitating couples out there that still have children.  I just want to offer up a few pieces of advice for couples thinking about starting a family. 

First of all, having a child is a huge decision to make, regardless of whether a couple is married or not.  So before you decide to have a baby, you and your partner need to take the time to understand how different your lives will be once a baby enters the picture.  Some couples don’ t realize the true time commitment, and responsibility of having a child, and couples need to understand that their relationship will never be the same because they aren’t just thinking of themselves anymore. 

That being said, many couples do understand the commitment involved and are more than ready to start having children.  Some of these couples are married, but a growing amount of these couples are simply living together.  But like I said before, most of the available research on cohabitation has not been positive.  One of the major disadvantages of cohabitation has been reduced marriage rates.  Married individuals tend to be happier, and healthier than single individuals, and the benefits of marriage seem to decrease when couples are simply cohabitating.  (Popenoe, 2009)  Cohabitating couples also have a higher rate of separation than married couples do, and this is where having children might become a problem. (Popenoe, 2009)

Separation and divorce are very hard on children, and single parents have a number of issues ranging from the emotional to the economic.  Cohabitating couples that have children run the risk of eventually raising children in one-parent households.  Research also suggests that cohabitating couples that eventually do decide to get married tend to have higher rates of divorce than couples that did not cohabitate before marriage. (Popenoe, 2009)

I understand that the research isn’t too optimistic when it comes to cohabitating couples having children, but I would also like to point out that every individual isn’t the same.  Research has also found that cohabitation has no negative effects on eventual marriage if these couples had never cohabitated with anyone else before each other.  (Popenoe, 2009)

I don’t want to discourage any couple that truly wants to have a family simply because of the research, but I do ask that you keep the research in mind before you do decide to have a child.  You need to step back and make sure that the two of you are truly committed to each other first, and only then can your family succeed.


Popenoe, D., (2009) Cohabitation, marriage, and child well-being: a cross-national perspective.   Social Science and Public Policy. Vol. 43, 429-436.

Introducing Solids for Your 4-6 Month Old Infant

I bet you can't believe how fast your little one is growing!  Now they're starting to eats solids, next they'll be moving out of the house for collage!  Some important key elements to remember when introducing solids to your baby is to always have it pureed and give them small amounts at a time (1-2 Tablespoons).  Also, giving your child one fruit, vegetable, or infant cereal dosing at a time and waiting for a whole 24 hours to make sure they aren't allergic to it specifically.  Talk to your pediatrician for more in depth information on this topic before your start!

WIC. (2009, August 1). Feeding your baby the first year! UT WIC Program . Salt Lake City, Utah, USA: WIC.
The Baby Owner’s Manual: operating instructions, trouble-shooting tips, and advice on first-year maintenance.

By Louis Borgenicht, M.D. and Joe Borgenicht, D.A.D. 

This book had a lot of useful information but in a simple and easy way for new parents to understand.  Dr.  Louis Borgenicht has run his own practice in Salt Lake City, UT for the last 16 years. He is also an assistant professor of Pediatrics at The University of Utah School of Medicine.  His son, co-author Joe Borgenicht is a first-time father and is also a writer, producer, and co-author of The Action Hero’s Handbook.  This book covers everything that is involved in the first-year of a baby’s life.

I loved the theme and layout of this book. The theme is similar to an auto owner’s manual but instead uses simple terms and information relevant to newborn babies, 0-12 months. I also loved the illustrations in the book they were very self explanatory and instructions were illustrated step by step.  Another aspect of this book that I enjoyed was that it isn’t meant for you to sit down and read, on the contrary, its purpose is to be a resource for you to pick up, easily navigate, and read the information you are looking for and have questions on. It has a table of contents as well as an index for you to easily find what you are looking for.  The book contains seven chapters, each of these chapters have several topics and subtopics:

·         Chapter 1: Preparation and home installation
·         Chapter 2: General care
·         Chapter 3: Feeding- understanding the baby’s power supply
·         Chapter 4: Programming sleep mode
·         Chapter 5: General maintenance
·         Chapter 6: Growth and development
·         Chapter 7: Safety and emergency maintenance

Baby’s sleep chart, baby bladder function, and baby bowel function forms are in the appendix, at the end of the book that parents can fill out. Parents are also provided with instructions within the book on how to fill out these forms.  

This book aligns with research and has the general recommendations for infants 0-12 months. There is a chapter in the book that covers growth and development that I found extremely helpful. This chapter contains developmental milestones, verbal communication and mobility, coping with tantrums, and coping with separation anxiety. They also have medical recommendations on various procedures and diseases such as circumcisions and chicken pox. The information provided is very applicable to those who have a newborn baby or even those who are around a recently new baby. The quality of writing is excellent. The content is easy to understand and to the point.  The book contains step by step instructions, expert tips, and caution notes.

I would highly recommend this book to new parents. It is fun to read, the illustrations are colorful and simple, and the book is a good resource to have. This book covers everything you need to know about your baby the first year and so much more.


Borgenicht, L., & Borgenicht, J. (2003). The baby owner's manual: operating instructions, trouble-shooting tips, and advice on first-year maintenance. Philadelphia: Quirk Books.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Enjoy the First Year Because They Grow Up Fast!

It is amazing how fast babies grow, especially in the first year. Within the first year a newborn infant will triple in weight and increase in length by 50 percent (, 2012). It seems that new parents are frequently looking forward to the next milestone wondering when their infant will sit up, talk, crawl, stand and walk. Instead, they should be enjoying the moment and time with they have with their infant.

My mom had this poem called “Song for the Fifth Child” and I remember reading it as a child. Even though I did not thoroughly understand the poem at the time, I did like the end where it stated that she is rocking her baby. It is special to me because as an infant my mom would rock me in her rocking chair all of the time. I am the youngest of three and there is a four year gap between me and my brother, therefore, she was able to spend a lot of one on one time with me.  Babies are so sweet and one needs to enjoy the time that they have with their infant. I have added the poem below to read.

Song for a Fifth Child
by Ruth Hulburt Hamilton

Mother, oh Mother, come shake out your cloth,
Empty the dustpan, poison the moth,
Hang out the washing and butter the bread,
Sew on a button and make up a bed.
Where is the mother whose house is so shocking?
She’s up in the nursery, blissfully rocking.

Oh, I’ve grown shiftless as Little Boy Blue
(Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).
Dishes are waiting and bills are past due
(Pat-a-cake, darling, and peek, peekaboo).
The shopping’s not done and there’s nothing for stew
And out in the yard there’s a hullabaloo
But I’m playing Kanga and this is my Roo.
Look! Aren’t her eyes the most wonderful hue?
(Lullaby, rockaby, lullaby loo).

The cleaning and scrubbing will wait till tomorrow,
For children grow up, as I’ve learned to my sorrow.
So quiet down, cobwebs. Dust go to sleep.
I’m rocking my baby and babies don’t keep.

Luckily, we have pictures and videos that make it easy for us to remember them during their first year. A fun way to see how fast your infant grows is to take a picture each month with them next to the same stuffed animal. You will be surprised how much they grow throughout the year. Here is a video that shows an example of my nephew throughout his first year. 
-Laura (2012). Growth and your newborn. Retrieved from growth/grownewborn.html

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Reader Response; Infant sharing same bed as mother

From Cheryl R:

I recommend it! I recommend it both from a personal point of view, and then from a large body of research that conflicts with recent reports that have alarmed many new parents about co-sleeping.

 My Story

     With my first child, I was terrified to sleep with her because I had heard horror stories of mothers rolling on their infants, so I tried sleeping separately. When my baby cried, I would rouse myself from delicious sleep to get her. It was so cold outside my cozy blankets, and when I picked up my baby, her body temperature seemed to fluctuate so much that I could not decide how to dress or cover her. When I nursed her in a chair, feeling chilled and nauseous from weariness,I was afraid I would fall asleep and drop her to the floor. When she finally fell asleep, she would wake up when I tried to lay her down, especially after the first week. I can see why exhausted mothers decide to let their infants “Cry It Out”.
      My husband came from a large family that believed in the “family bed”.  I certainly didn't want a "family bed", but I didn't want to leave the baby to cry nor keep getting up. I was desperate. My husband recommended that I call his sister who was an expert on the subject. She is a very intelligent woman, and I respected her and her children very much, so I decided to call her, but I still had strong reservations. I told her of my fear of rolling on my baby, and she said if I lay my baby on my upper arm, I would not roll on her. I tried it while I was awake, and it seem unlikely that I would roll on her, so I decided to try it. She was so light that it was not uncomfortable for me.  It was a blissful change for us! When our baby began to wake, I could stay half asleep, and comfort or nurse her in a warm comfortable position. She and I maintained a comfortable temperature. Her sleep patterns became more regular and matched mine. As she got older, I was able to adjust to what was comfortable for our family, the I have never regretted the decision as I believe it made a major difference in my health and the relationship with our children, all without taking extra time!

The Research

     It turns out there is a lot of controversy over the subject of co-sleeping. The U. S. Consumer Products Safety Commission (CPSC) did a study that concluded that co-sleeping increased the risk of SIDS, and this study is widely quoted. This is why there is such a recent scare over co-sleeping. Several medical practitioners and researchers disagree with the conclusions of this “study”and contend that the validity of this research is weak. In his book “The Baby Sleep Book: The Complete Guide to a Good Night's Rest for the Whole Family”, Dr Sears says that the CPSC research does not follow research protocol, and does not coincide with many other studies, including those in other countries, that show co-sleeping reduces the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). For more analysis, please read my book review of this book posted on this website, especially paragraphs 5 & 6 of the review. 
      In a class at the University of Utah, I was also taught that the research shows that co-sleeping reduces the risk of SIDS because the mother's breathing helps regulate the infant's breathing and other bodily functions (Diamond, fall 2011). This certainly matches my personal experience, that co-sleeping is more safe and natural and is the preferred sleeping pattern around the world. A website,, written by a family of doctors, has a page that talks about co-sleeping. Dr Sears said that the risk of SIDS increases when infants sleep alone because their bodies have trouble regulating on their own. SIDS has often been called crib death because these infants were found dead in their cribs (

Further Recommendations

If you still worry about co-sleeping, there are still ways to be near your baby. At type co-sleeping in the search box. As you scroll to the bottom of that webpage, it shows a cute little bed that attaches securely and safely to the side of the adults bed, for those who don't feel secure with co-sleeping. It gives a link to the website that sells these within arms reach "cribs".

Diamond, L. M. (Fall, 2011). Psy 2800, Psychology of Love, University of Utah.

Sears, W., Sears, R., Sears, J., Sears, M. (2005). The baby sleep book: The
     complete guide to a good night's rest for the whole family (Sears parenting
     library). New York: NY: Little, Brown and Company, Hachette Book Group.
     Available in paperback and eBook Edition.

Blog Recommend Alert!

Planning Family Blog

If you still have questions unanswered then this blog is perfect for you!  It has been around for a long while and has extensive posts that will be helpful for you and your family.  At they have information on Preconception, Pregnancy, Newborn, Baby, Toddler, Parents, and even Free Baby Stuff!  I will answer a couple questions you may have about this site and then I urge you to check it out for yourself!

First: “Is this blog good for me, as a new parent?”

Yes! In skawering through this blog I’ve found that it is perfect for the needs of our own audience of new parents.  In their section labeled “NEWBORN” they have articles and videos of what you might need to know with having a newborn baby such as: Bringing your baby home, Feeding, Newborn Care, Depression, Circumcision, Baby Blues and Postpartum, Premature Babies. They also have sections on quizzes, recipes, checklists, and tools (example: Birth Announcements, Breastfeeding and Diaper Changing Log, ect.) Come and look through on your own:

Second: “Is what I’m reading reliable?”

Reliable information is hard to come by on internet sometimes! This is why we, UpAllNight, started our blog.  We’ve worked hard in providing reliable information from reliable sources.  With that said, it is still important for you, as a reader, to always double check your answers.  Since anyone can post things on the internet what you need to do is check if their article has “references” at the bottom of it.  References show you where the author got their information.  If the article doesn’t have references, don’t be distraught!  Just double check the information with your local pediatrician, with a quick call.  Planning  Family has many great articles, but if you have a question about what you’re reading don’t be afraid to double check your information. 

Remember: Planning Family offers general information and is for educational purposes only. This information is not a substitute for professional medical, psychiatric or psychological advice.  Nothing on this website should be taken to imply an endorsement of Planning Family or its partners by any person quoted or mentioned.

Third: “Will I be able to apply what Planning Family in my own life?”

Lucky for you, this blog has hundreds and hundreds of articles!  Since this blog was made to educate their reader, it not hard to find what you are looking for.  You may go looking for one specific question and come out with an answer to that question along with other ideas that you hadn’t thought of before.

Fourth: “Is it an easy read?”

Everybody likes easy reads, don’t they?  The nice thing about this website is it gives you the information, without you needing to go hunting for it.  For example, if you have a question on feeding your newborn you go to the section on “feeding” and click on the article that best describes your question.  There isn’t a lot of “fluff” so they give you the information without you needing to hunt for it.

Last question: “What do you think about this blog, Chelsey?”

I’ve loved exploring this blog!  It has A LOT of information, which is very comforting to you as a reader.  I’ve loved how well established this blog and updated the information provided is.  I would recommend it to anyone!  But REMEMBER, check your resources and call your pediatrician if you have any questions and as always, don’t settle on one article or blog to answer your questions!

A Great Book for a Curious Parent

My cousin Quinci is expecting her first baby this year, and naturally she’s hungry for useful and accurate information.  As I was looking through the many books on pregnancy and babies that she bought, I happened to notice one in particular that was rather helpful.  It’s called “Your Baby’s First Year Week by Week” and was written by Glade B. Curtis, (M.D) and Judith Schuler (M.S). 

One of the things I appreciated most about this particular book was that the information was actually accurate.  Very often I have found myself reading self- help or informational books that are nothing more than the opinions of the author.  When it comes to information about one’s child though, it is imperative that the information one receives is accurate.  This book covers everything from developmental milestones, to increasing your child’s cognitive and motor skills, all of which can be trusted and implemented into your own parenting.  The information I found particularly useful in this book was the ways in which to handle emergencies or illnesses.  The book is broken down week by week and in each section is listed several illnesses or episodes a baby might have at this age.  The authors tell you whether the experience is serious or not, and give advice on what to do in that particular situation.  I think this will be useful to parents because they can know what to expect ahead of time and know what to do when a situation arises.

I was also very impressed with this book because it answers every possible question a parent might ask as well as a number of things many parents wouldn’t even think to ask at all.  I found the content very applicable, and the book is filled with a number of useful tips and tricks for new parents.   One section for example, talks about what babies probably will not like during their third and fourth months.  Overstimulation and irregular sounds or movements are listed as things that can be unsettling and disruptive to a child and this is completely right.  While stimulation can help a child’s growth, too much will overwhelm your baby and do little more than to frustrate and confuse them (Sloan 2010).  The back of the book also has a glossary and contact information for other resources such as the National Institute of Child Health & Human Development. 

The writing is sophisticated, yet easily understandable and the book is broken down week by week up until the child’s 1st birthday.  Each section is filled with random tips, feeding and sleeping habits, developmental milestones, and health problems that might arise.  The book is easy to navigate and the writing itself is straightforward and applicable. 

Overall I thought this was a great read and I definitely learned a lot from this book.  Knowledge is power and it never hurts to know what to expect from your little one when they arrive.  If you have any questions at all, I’m sure this book will be a great start in answering them for you.


Sloan, S, Stewart, M, Dunne, L, (2010) The effect of breastfeeding and stimulation in the home on cognitive development in infants. Child Care in Practice. Vol. 16 no 2.

Reader Response: "I am a new parent of a six month old baby. I am eager for her to start talking. What can I do to help her develop her language skills? Does baby sign language help?"

Learning language is much more than just making sounds. Listening, understanding, and knowing the names of people and things are all part of language development. During this stage, babies also develop bonds of love and trust with their parents as well as others. The way parents interact with their infant will set the basis for how they will interact with them and how they will interact with others.
Here are some things to expect at various ages. Please keep in mind that every infant is different and reaches milestones at different times. If you are concerned about your infants’ development, talk to your pediatrician.

Birth to 3 months
·         Tells you what they need through different cries
·         Can recognize your voice or common noises
·         May become startled at loud noises
·         When you speak they may smile, become quiet, or make noises

3 months to 6 months
·         Repeats syllables and express pleasure or displeasure with their voice
·         May pay attention to music and toys that make sounds and move their eyes in the direction of the sounds

6 months to 12 months
·         Ability to imitate words and say simples words like dada or mama
·         Can understand simple instructions
·         Will turn and look in the direction of sounds

Activities you can do to encourage speech and language development:
·         Encourage your baby to make vowel-like and consonant-vowel sounds such as “ma,” “da,” and “ba.”
·         Reinforce attempts by maintaining eye contact, responding with speech, and imitating vocalizations (for example, raising the pitch of your voice to indicate a question).
·         Imitate your baby’s laughter and facial expressions.
·         Teach your baby to imitate your actions
o    I have found that lots of babies are pros at this. Common actions include clapping their hands, blowing kisses, pat-a-cake, peek-a-boo, and itsy-bitsy-spider.
·         Talk as you bathe, feed, and dress your baby.
o    Talk about what you are doing, where you are going, what you will do, and who and what you will see.
·         Identify colors
·         Count items
·         Use gestures to help convey a meaning such as waving your hand when saying goodbye.
·         Acknowledge their attempt to communicate
·         Expand on a single word your baby uses.
o    For example, if your baby says “mama,” follow by saying “Here is mama. Mama loves you. Where is baby? Here is baby.”
·         Introduce animal sounds to associate a sound with a specific meaning.
o    For example, the cat says meow.
·         Read to your child. Sometimes this can be as simple as describing the pictures in a book without actually reading the written words. Choose books that are sturdy and have large colorful pictures. Encourage naming and pointing to familiar objects in the book.

Baby Signing
“Baby signing” refers to the use of visual-gestural signs between hearing parents and their young hearing children with the goal of earlier and clearer communication (Pizer, Walters & Meier, 2007). Whether you decide to incorporate baby signing in your infants’ language development is your personal choice. Although there are several benefits to teaching your baby to sign there is no long-term benefits. However, any time spent interacting with your baby is beneficial. As stated earlier, the practice of baby sign language leads to earlier and clearer parent-child communication. Other benefits include:

·         Reduced frustration on the part of the infant
·         Accelerated spoken language development
·         Improved parent-child bonding
·         Increased IQ

I hope the information provided will be of help and will help you decide whether or not to incorporate baby signing in your infants language development.


American speech-language-hearing association. (2011). Retrieved from
Child development. (2011, September 09). Retrieved from
Ochs, A. (2011, Sept 02). Cognitive language development in infants. Retrieved from
Pizer, G., Walters, K., & Meier, R. P. (2007). Bringing Up Baby with Baby Signs: Language Ideologies and Socialization in Hearing Families. Sign Language Studies, 7(4), 387-430.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Crib Safety

Bringing your baby home is such a fun and exciting time! However, it is important to make sure that you are bringing your baby home to a safe environment. One of the most important areas in your home to make sure is safe for your child is his or her crib. I added a link below to a video that I created that will help you to know what to do and what not to do in order to make sure your child sleeps safely.

American Academy of Pediatrics. (2012, January 4). New Crib Standards: What Parents Need to Know. Retrieved from
Pediatrics, A. A. (2011, October 18). AAP expands guidelines for infant sleep safety and SIDS risk reduction. Retrieved from

Monday, April 2, 2012

More Fun Than Wiping Someone’s Tushy?

When I was trying to find out what types of blogs are available to new parents, I came across a blog called rookie moms. I love the tagline that they have under the title “more fun than wiping someone’s tushy.”  And after looking over the blog I do find it that is a fun blog. 

This blog is created from two friends, Heather and Whitney, who had babies around the same time. They found out that they were bored during the day while they were home taking care of their new babies (understandable). Therefore, they decided to create a blog to share their inspiration and adventures with other moms. Today they have over 5,500 followers. One of the features that I like about this blog is they have different age categories for their posts. When you arrive at their blog, you are able to access information from 1-3 months, 4-6 months, 7-9 months, 10-12 months, toddler, and even preschool.

 I clicked on 1-3 months and the information they provide varies. They provide fun tips and easy to do projects. They also provide their personal experiences that they have had with each of their babies. I liked this blog because they discussed serious concerns and provided help. They also provide fun activity ideas. One idea that I thought sounded fun would be to have an ugly baby clothes contest. I have heard of an ugly tie or ugly sweater contest but never an ugly baby clothes contest. For this idea they say to invite others who have babies to join the contest. Give out funny or fun prizes to the winners. This would be something fun that one could do to break up the day and it would not cost a lot of money. They have made their activity ideas into a book titled The Rookie Mom’s Handbook: 250 Activities to Do with (or without) Your Baby. They also have a book called Stuff Every Mom Should Know,that offers advice on things from swaddling an infant to throwing birthday parties. In addition, they had fun things for new parents to do, to make sure that they keep “sane.” This blog is merely a fun blog; even though it has some, it is not one that has a lot of researched educational information. However, they do have a lot of fun ideas and I feel that it is necessary to be able to find fun things to do with your infant. I think that this blog is one to help stay at home moms (or dads), especially if they are looking for new things to do.