Category: Family Life

Baby Clothes 101: How Do You Clothe a Newborn?

Almost four million babies are born each year in the United States. That’s countless itty bitty socks, shirts, onesies, sleep sacks, and everything else that goes into a newborn’s wardrobe. 

It can definitely be tempting to buy endless amounts of baby clothes. Who can resist grabbing handfuls of things when you walk into a baby clothing store?

However, a newborn baby doesn’t need a large number of outfits right when they’re born. You’ll have enough on your plate at that time without having to coordinate a ton of outfits. There’s plenty of time for adorable outfit coordination as the baby gets older. 

We’re going to talk about what baby outfits a newborn needs so you can dress your baby in confidence in those first few weeks of their life. 

What Baby Clothes a Newborn Should Wear During the Day

A great start for newborn baby clothes is a wrap shirt or onesies. Onesies are one of the most common clothing types for babies. These bodysuits are a great base layer for infants. 

What’s great about them is that they stay in place and don’t expose your baby’s tummy and back. The snaps on the bottom make it so you don’t have to completely undress them when you change their diapers. This makes diaper changing a lot easier for you and your baby won’t get chilly. 

Another option is a wrap-style or kimono shirt. The shirt snaps on the front so it doesn’t have to go over their head. This is a wonderful option for the first few days of their life since it’s gentle on their sensitive umbilical cord area. 

Now that we have the top figured out, let’s talk about bottoms. Footies are pants that have feet built-in. This eliminates the need for booties or baby socks. 

With footies, buy sizes that are a little bit larger but still fit your baby comfortable. This way you’ll get more use out of the pants even as the baby grows. You can also cut off the foot portion of the footies and turn them into pants. 

When the baby is in a car seat, add a light blanket over them. If the weather is mild, all they’ll need is a onesie with a pair of shorts or pants. The bottoms help add protection from the car seat buckle pinching their chubby legs. 

Don’t Forget About Layers

Whatever season you’re in will play a part in how many layers your baby wears and how thick each layer is. If it’s summer, all you need is a lightweight onesie. A longsleeved option is great as it ensures your baby feels cozy and protects their arms as well. 

During the winter, think about how many layers you wear but add one additional layer. If other people in your home are comfortable inside just wearing a shirt, add a t-shirt on top of the baby’s onesie. If everyone is wearing a sweater, add a sweater for the baby on top of their two layers. 

However, a lot of people tend to put too many layers on a baby. If they start to get too hot, you’ll notice a sweaty back, flushed cheeks, or fussiness. Whenever figuring out baby clothes, take your comfort level into consideration when determining how many layers the baby needs. 

What Accessories Do They Need?

Whether you’re looking for baby boy clothes or baby girl clothes, the accessories are some of the most fun parts of creating their outfit. You can keep them in a soft skull cap no matter the season. Newborn babies lose a large amount of heat through their heads. 

You’ll also want to get some thin mittens. This will help prevent them from scratching themselves. 

If your baby isn’t wearing footies, you’ll want them in some baby socks. They have poor circulation when they’re newborns. This causes their feet to be colder. 

For the months where it’s extra cold, you can add some leg warmers. Slip them on over the baby’s pants if you’re outside in colder weather. They’ll also help keep their socks up. 

When you’re nursing, carrying the baby to the car, or outside, cover the baby with a blanket. That’ll help them feel protected and cozy. 

A lightweight blanket during the summer is a great option. For colder months, use a thicker blanket. 

Wrap the baby from their toes to their next. Secure the blanket so it doesn’t flap in their face. 

How to Dress the Baby for Nighttime 

Less clothing and accessories are the way to go for sleeping. Babies can get out of their hats and mittens in bed, posing certain health risks. All your baby needs to wear is a onesie underneath a swaddling blanket. 

You can also look into a long-sleeved onesie that has built-in mittens. This is great if your baby tends to scratch themselves. If they don’t like to be swaddled, explore a sleep sack. 

You also don’t need to stress about purchasing clothes that are made from organic fibers. Natural fibers such as bamboo or cotton are very breathable. This helps your baby regulate its temperature. 

Wash any new clothes you buy before you put your baby in them. Some dyes and harsh chemicals can seep into the fabric while they’re being manufactured. 

Save outfits that are brightly dyed with large designs for older babies since you won’t know if your newborn has sensitive skin. Soft clothing that’s plain is perfect for your newborn. 

Keep Your Newborn Baby Happy and Well-Clothed

You’ll have a lot going on in the first few weeks of your baby’s life. Keeping the baby clothes simple and straightforward will reduce some of your stress. They should be comfortable at all times. 

For more parenting tips, check out one of our other articles. 

Thanks for the Memories: What Does Memory Care Provide?

Globally, more than 55 million people live with dementia. If you’re currently helping a parent or family member with dementia, you know that it’s not always easy to provide them with the care they need.

That’s where memory care facilities can help. These facilities are designed for people experiencing memory difficulties. They can help them face life’s challenges with dignity.

Let’s take a brief look at some of the facilities memory care provides. 

Routine and Structure

People with Alzheimer’s or other forms of dementia usually benefit from having strong routines and structure to their day. The staff is trained to provide gentle reminders to help them through the day. 

This structured environment can greatly reduce stress for dementia sufferers. It also ensures that they get proper nutrition and personal care.

When people are disorientated, their sense of time often becomes lost. This can lead to missing meals and forgetting to take care of themselves. The memory caregivers at memory care facilities are trained to help them to follow these routines for their own well-being.

Safety and Security

During the middle stage of Alzheimer’s disease, it’s common for sufferers to wander. At this time, they need lots of supervision to ensure that they don’t get into danger.

Memory care facilities also have alarmed doors and other protective measures. They keep residents with dementia safe if they get the urge to wander.

They also usually have enclosed outdoor spaces. This provides a safe place for them to get some fresh air and sunshine.

Specially Designed Activities

Most assisted living and care facilities provide activities. These help residents to keep as mentally active and socially connected as possible. This is also true of memory care facilities, although the activities may be slightly different.

Memory care facilities include people at different stages of the disease. According to the stage they are at, they participate in different activities. The goal is to improve or retain cognitive function for as long as possible.

Singing, music, art, and knitting are just some of the activities memory care facilities use to engage people with dementia.

Medical Care

As the disease progresses, your loved one will need more and more support to stay as healthy as possible.

Medication management and personal care are just two of the facilities that memory care facilities provide. Search for memory care near me, and look at what services they offer. The best facilities can provide nursing support and work closely with doctors to care for your loved one’s needs.

Getting the Best Memory Care For Your Loved One

Thinking about moving your loved one into a memory care facility is very stressful. However, as their condition progresses, it will provide an environment in which they will be safe and well looked after. Activities will also help them keep their minds stimulated for as long as possible.

If you’ve enjoyed this article, we’ve got plenty more for you on related topics. Check out our Family Life section for more hints and tips about caring for those closest to you.

What Dance Style Suits My Child Best?

Did you know that over 10 million people in the country have taken dance classes or danced in a studio? It’s no secret that dance is good for not just physical health, but mental health too. It can improve flexibility and strength and is a powerful outlet for creativity, no matter what age you are. 

If you want to introduce your child to the benefits of dancing, it is important to do your research first before you enroll them in a program. Make sure you pick the dance style that suits them best. Luckily, you can learn how to do that here by checking out this handy guide.

Discover Dance Interests With Your Child

The first step on your dance journey is to sit down with your child and discover what their interest is in dance. Do they have dreams of a serious career in ballet, or hoofing it up as a tap dancer, or want to learn hip hop dancing for fun? Find the style of dance that resonates with them, and then go from there. 

Consider Group or Solo Lessons

Does your child learn better one-on-one, or in a group? While dance classes are a great way to meet new friends, some children may be shy and find a large class overwhelming. Find a program that is tailored to their needs. 

Look at Performance Options

Another point to consider is whether or not your child wants to perform, especially if they suffer from stage fright. Many dance classes have performances at the end of the term, while some are only recreational lessons. Have an honest talk with your little one first to see what they prefer first before signing up for a course. 

To Compete, or Not To Compete?

The next step is to find out whether your child wants to compete in dance competitions or to dance just for fun. There are many programs that encourage entering competitions and touring, so it’s key to understand what they’re comfortable with before investing the time and money necessary for these contests and tours. Sometimes this route can put extra pressure on the lessons, but other children can be motivated by it.

Pick a Dance Style 

There are many different types of dance classes for children, but all have the benefit of providing exercise and fun. From a simple movement class to jazz, there is a wide variety for young ones, so find out what appeals to them before making a decision. 

Ready To Get Your Child Dancing? 

Now that you’ve learned all about the different types of dance lessons out there, you can pick a dance style that is the best match for your child. Before committing to a class, have a talk with them to see whether they want to compete, perform, or dance for fun. Having clear expectations will help you find the best fit and ensure that it is a positive and enjoyable experience for everyone! 

Did you find this article helpful? Then check out the rest of this site to explore other useful topics! 

5 Things You Should Know About End of Life Care

Death is inevitable. It’s a journey that everyone prepares for, with the hopes of dying in dignity. In the US, statistics project the number of deaths to likely reach 3.6 million in 2037.

Eventually, the death rate may peak at 2055 as each year will experience an uptick.

Fortunately, some people see their death coming, especially during the full-blown stages of a terminal illness. For these people, end of life care gives them the emotional support to rest peacefully.

While no one can have all the answers about the end of life, it’s crucial to be ready when you need professional care for the transition. Here are the five things you need to know about the end of life arrangements.

1. The Best Time for End of Life Care

Typically, end of life care begins when the patient needs it, especially if they’ll likely die within a year. However, the end of life stages timeline varies and can even go beyond years. In very unfortunate situations, it can be hours or a few days.

You would also want to take your loved one to a care facility when they develop advanced incurable illnesses such as motor neuron disease or cancer.

2. Making End of Life Arrangements

After checking into the care facility, the next step will involve making plans for advance care. These arrangements may include giving a lawyer power of attorney to make health and personal decisions on behalf of the patient.

At this point, the patient can also state their death wishes through a will. The caregivers will document these wishes and share them with the family when the right time comes.

3. Getting a Legal Designate

Caregivers require patients to choose a legal designate, especially if they are frail and can’t make sound decisions. That’s why many people refer to legal designates as substitute decision-makers. A secondary decision-maker will also help implement the patient’s written wishes.

Also, the patient’s family needs someone who can update them with the real-time status of their loved ones. In that case, the legal designate does the communication on behalf of the patient.

4. Spiritual Nourishment

Making end of life arrangements is not about medical wishes alone. Emotional and spiritual wellbeing is still important at the end of life stage timeline and beyond death. Remember, addressing every need prepares the patient to die peacefully.

Spiritual nourishment prepares the patient to discuss their legacy wishes and post-death arrangements. Sone of the post-death activities the patient may want to discuss include type of burial and funeral home fees.

Many people prefer in-ground burial. However, cremation can be a good option if the patient wants to divide the ashes among family members. Moreover, the average cremation cost is relatively affordable.

5. Emotional Care

The emotional needs of a dying patient can be pretty demanding. Professional caregivers know the emotional support to offer in varying circumstances.

At the care facility, the patient gets company in whatever they do. It can be reading, watching movies, or simply holding each other.

Moreover, they allow patients to talk about their feelings and sadness. For instance, many people find it hard to discuss burial ceremonies and funeral fees when they imagine leaving their family behind. End of life care offers the emotional support to face these inevitable fears.

Transition To The Afterlife Is Easy When You Prepare For It

Take time and explore the different end of life care plans that may match your emotional and financial needs. What’s important, go for the option that guarantees dignity and privacy.

Read more articles on this site to learn about making end of life arrangements and planning funeral home service fees.

Counseling for Families: Do You Really Need It?

Families have disagreements, that’s no secret. Sometimes those disagreements can lead to heftier divides. Those divides can lead to breaks in the family dynamic. 

Before you find yourself at this point talking to someone is encouraged. Counseling for families can be beneficial. You could fix those problems before it’s too late. 

Don’t wait for familial problems to divide your family. It’s time to decide if mediation will help. Decide if it’s time for family counseling before it’s too late to do so. 

Do I Need Family Counseling? 

There is no easy response to this question. You and your family must decide if this is the best course of action for everyone. Oftentimes, the answer is yes, family counseling is a great idea.

If your family has taken to using the silent treatment, this is a great indication that action needs to be taken. Other factors may include family trauma and substance abuse. Families decide to utilize therapy for many different reasons. 

Family counseling will help you to end family disputes. Deciding to make the first step and make an appointment can be difficult. 

What Are the Benefits of Family Counseling? 

The benefits of counseling can be different for every family. It all depends on what you are looking to achieve. 

Some of these sessions can be aimed at psychological damage. Your family may have matters they need to discuss but find it hard to one on one. A therapist will be able to assist you to address them. 

Perhaps behavioral issues are the problem. This is another area in which a professional will be able to delve into the root of the problem. Your therapist has dealt with many cases in the past. 

Or maybe it is a simple misunderstanding that has spiraled out of control. This is where family mediation comes in. Counseling will help your family to address these problems. 

Does Family Counseling Work? 

This poses a different outcome for every family. Your sessions will only help as far as your family will allow it. Be sure that they are willing to be open in your sessions. 

Family counseling depends on the participation of all parties. You will be able to discuss your goals and your hopes for achievements. Clarify for your family and counselor what your hopes are for therapy. 

Counseling for Families Can Be Important

As long as therapy is taken seriously, it will be effective. You and your family must work together and be open to solving disputes. Counseling for families should never be entered into lightly. 

Your therapist will assist your family in coming to decisions and opening communication. If your family has been struggling this is the therapy you need. It will help you focus on what is important and how to communicate with one another. 

For other tips and ideas on how to be the best parent possible, take a look at our blogs. 

Top 4 Factors to Consider When Choosing Child Care

The child care market is larger than ever, with an estimated 3.9% growth expected in the coming years.

That’s great news for parents, as it means there are more options for child care! At the same time, more options can also make choosing child care more difficult.

How can you find great care for your little ones while accounting for the inevitable price increase? Keep reading as we break down the factors you’ll want to think about as you start researching facilities!

1. Reputation

Reading online reviews can be a great way to learn about the value and trustworthiness of a child care service.

Once you’ve found a few care centers that look worthwhile, do some research and see what parents think. Often, this is the next best thing to a personal recommendation.

You’ll also want to look into their licensing. Choosing a licensed child care facility gives you the peace of mind that comes with knowing your kids are in the care of trained professionals.

If you’re not sure where to start, Child Care Aware has a great list of resources for parents, including a directory.

2. Operating Hours

As recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics notes, in almost 60% of two-parent households, both parents work at least part-time.

This poses a difficult challenge, as you’ll have to find a facility that operates on your schedule.

Always double-check that the service you’re interested in can accommodate your work hours. While this might not be an issue if you’re working a 9-to-5, unique work hours are starting to become more commonplace.

3. Activities and Structure

A truly great child care service does so much more than simply look after little ones. Instead, they foster their sense of individuality and encourage growth through educational activities for kids.

Child care is a great way for your children to learn how to socialize with peers and get a head start on their academic future.

Make sure to look into a facility’s curriculum and attitude toward education so your child can learn to put their best foot forward.

4. Cost

Of course, all the above factors are predicated on being able to afford care in the first place. Unfortunately, this tends to be prohibitive to most parents, especially those who work paycheck-to-paycheck.

With that said, it never hurts to inquire about possible discounts or financial assistance.

Plenty of facilities will work with you to find a plan that fits your budget. Some care centers also operate on a sliding-scale system, which can be a saving grace for parents struggling to make ends meet.

In short, don’t be afraid to inquire about cost-saving measures. A lot of child care facility operators are parents themselves, so they’ll likely understand.

What to Consider When Choosing Child Care

Choosing the right care program allows you to advance your career and earn a living while ensuring that your children are taken care of. Make sure to consider the above factors when choosing child care!

And if you’re interested in learning more about how you can balance work and family, make sure to check out the rest of our blog.

Early Education: Is Montessori Childcare Right for My Family?

Are you looking at sending your child to one of the 500 public Montessori childcare institutions in the United States?

It is a word that appears a lot when you are researching preschools and many parents have no idea what it means. It is an educational philosophy, like Reggio Emilia or Waldorf. And the Montessori method is becoming more popular for parents wanting to raise self-reliant kids.

Not sure what Montessori childcare looks like in practice or whether it is right for your child? Learn more about it here.

Montessori History: What Is Montessori?

Dr. Maria Montessori opened the first Montessori school in Rome in 1907. She was a physician and educator and used the experience she gained from opening her school to write her book, The Montessori Method, in 1912.

She observed that children learn best when they have as much freedom as possible to encourage curiosity. Teachers are not “teachers” but “guides” instead. They are almost always hands-off, allowing the children to develop practical skills by themselves and be independent. 

Montessori classrooms never have a whiteboard and a teacher’s desk with rows of chairs facing them. All chairs, toys, and tools are child-sized.

Teachers do not grade work and they do not punish or reward children in the traditional, mainstream sense. Dr. Montessori developed her method with children ages 3+ but the philosophy can apply to younger and older children, too.

Montessori Activities and Areas of Learning

Montessori childcare covers five areas of learning. These are:

  • Practical life skills
  • Sensory activities
  • Mathematics
  • Language studies
  • Cultural studies

Each of these five areas of learning will have a “work area” within each classroom and children can learn about each area through creative play.

The practical life area could have child-sized cleaning tools, kitchen equipment, and shoelaces. Here, children learn manners and everyday essential skills. The sensory area always has scented objects, materials of different textures, and colorful objects.

Many Montessori childcare institutions use number rods in their maths area. The language area might have books, pencils and paper, and alphabet shapes. Here, the children learn how to read and write and develop their literacy skills.

And the cultural area offers a range of activities relating to history, geography, art, music, and science. Maps and art supplies are common tools.

Finding the Right Montessori Childcare Center

Montessori is not a patented educational method. So, some preschools and schools might say they practice Montessori but in reality, they don’t. 

When going on a tour of a Montessori childcare center, look out for the work areas as detailed above. If the “teacher” is disciplining a child or doing a demonstration, it is likely not a Montessori institution. 

Use the following resources to help you find centers near you:

Though there is not one specific certification, there are professional Montessori associations. Ask the schools if they are a part of any before you sign up your child.

So, Is the Montessori Method Right for Your Child?

Some parents think that if they have energetic children or they have special needs that Montessori childcare will not work. All parents need to make that assessment themselves, but all children have the potential to excel in a Montessori environment.

Want more read more articles about childcare and early education? Browse our website for tons of other helpful parenting guides!