To Eat or Not to Eat that is the Question


Little Pumpkin

Remember the days when your baby would cry and you would know they needed one of the following : diaper change, burping, or the boob. Now that LP is a toddler she is always begging for snacks. Always “food?”, Soon followed by a temper tantrum when the answer is no; But how do you know if your toddler is really hungry or just wants to snack.

For Toddlers ( ages 1-3)

Daily calories needed: 1,200-1,400

With toddlers when they are eating lunch or dinner and they tell you that they are full and they have eaten a good amount of food on the plate trust them they know. It’s natural for a toddlers appetite to change day-to-day. one day they may want to eat everything on the plate the next not so much. Research done at the University of California, San Francisco, Up to 85 percent of parents say don’t listen to their kids when they say they are full and push them to eat more (‘two more bites”) , giving them praise for having a couple more bites. This could lead to your child eating when they aren’t hungry. As a child I remember going to my grand parents house for dinner and we weren’t allowed to leave the table until out plates were clean, making us apart of the exclusive “clean plate club”. As an adult I still struggle listening to my body when I am full and not feel like I have to finish everything on my plate. Talk about your classical conditioning. So when I became a parent I knew from the beginning that clean plate would not be a requirement in my childrens lives.  Don’t get me wrong if my kid takes two bites and says All done I know the last time she at was a snack at 2 and it is now 6pm she is hungry, but if she eats most of whats on her plate yeah I’ll listen and tall her good job. If your full you are full no sweets after dinner (fruit, apple sauce, cookies, ect….).  A study done at the University of Pennsylvania found that many over weight 5 to 12 year olds aren’t receptive to their own hunger cues. Helping your child to stay aware whether they are hungry or full may go a long way to prevent obesity.

At lunch time LP eats in the living room at the coffee table with her Little chair. We don’t do this because she wants to watch tv but because she is a toddler and it’s the middle of the day. she will eat a little see a toy she wants to play with then go back to her food and eat some more. Didn’t you know toddlers have busy schedules mid day lot’s of playing to fit in before that nap. so with a PB&J sandwich and some fruit and carrot sticks that gives LP to eat food that wont get cold and still taste good even though she is grazing. As time has gone by doing this I have noticed that LP will spend more and more time eating at one time and taking fewer and fewer play breaks. While this is happening she is learning to sit at the table and eat so when we go places (friends and familys houses for dinner, Restaurants) I have noticed she isn’t as fussy to stay at the table and eat.

At Dinner I do strap her in to the high chair for a few reasons. At the tail end of cooking dinner the house is filled with yummy smells and this kicks LP hunger in high gear resulting her at my feet begging for food. So I strap her in to the high chair and hive her a coloring book with some crayons. This way she knows that I am not ignoring her request and that food is coming soon. She gets to distract herself from the hunger with an activity , and I know she isn’t going to color on the walls or wood floors so I can concentrate on dinner. Finally the high chair is at the same level as the dinning room table so we can eat as a family and she can feel apart of it.

Kids can’t tell time so sticking to a schedule is important we keep meals and snacks about three hours apart. Breakfast at 6:30am ( know she is a early riser) a Healthy snack at 9:30 Lunch at 12:30 followed by a nap, a sweets snack (cookies, fruit snacks) at 3:30 and dinner a little after 6pm. We never really have problems with LP napping because she knows that after lunch comes a nap. keeping your kids on a schedule not only keeps your kid at a healthy by “normalizing hunger, but it helps them to know whats coming next in the day giving them a sense of security.

I know every parent has tried it but giving food as a bribe is a no no. Example: Lp was upset a toy had been taken from her from one of her little friends. She was mad! so she decided to throw a temper tantrum. Hubbys solution. He offers her food because he know thats the fail safe no matter what LP will be happy if you give her food. She is a eater what can I say. When I heard him offer her a treat. I said A. you are rewarding her for throwing a TT. And B. that could lead to emotional eating. He laughed at me “emotional eating?!”. He thought I was off my rocker. “She is two.” he said. Then My friend and I explained that emotional eating is psychological and if when she is disappointed as a child and you give her food to make her feel better, as an adult she will eat when she is upset. A lot of parents use food as reward and or trying to get their kid to do something they want for food. when you do this you are sending the wrong message about food. While some parents do this from time to time for short periods claim success it’s no good to use it in excess.

Bribing your kids to eat veggies is no good as well. toddlers tastes change a lot. one week LP loves cooked carrots the next she wont touch them. just because they don’t want to eat it doesn’t mean you should try to make them eat it, they will probably eat it next week and hate something else. being mindful of what your kid doesn’t want to eat week to week and just giving a different veggie they will eat will save you from wasting food and from tears (yours and your little one 🙂 )

Well I hope this helps you on this crazy adventure we call parenting. If you have more questions, or any feed back about this post  please feel free to leave a comment I love getting feed back from my readers.

Happy parenting! 🙂

The Terrible Twos


No one ever told me that the terrible two start before the kid is even two. At about 20 months LP started throwing temper tantrums. I have no one but myself to blame, she has my temper. Lp is a very laid back but when she gets mad, look out! So what to do with these temper tantrums she is throwing.  Well I didn’t want to punish LP for throwing a TT. A temper tantrum is a surge of emotion that your little one experience when they get mad. Learning how to control that emotion is the tricky part. So when ever LP throws a TT I take her to her room and tell her she can cry and scream all she wants in her room and when she is done she can come out and join the rest of us. I figure if LP knows there is a place to throw TT she will learn to control herself in public because her room is not there. Now this is a method I came up with on my own so I have no idea if it will work. LP has never thrown a TT in public yet. I told my husband I want LP to feel that she can express her emotions without feeling like she is doing something wrong. That’s why we put her in her room with the door open. Her room is her safe place, her area to do what she needs to get out her frustrations. When LP is on the verge of a TT I let her know that I understand that she is frustrated. I mean think about how frustrating it would be if you wanted something but no one understood what you wanted. I try to explain to her that I don’t understand what she wants when she doesn’t use her words. I believe a lot of LP TT is caused from frustration so working on communication is key to keep the TT to a minimum.

How do you deal with Temper Tantrums? leave a comment on what worked for you and what didn’t.

 

I sleep where I want to sleep


LP is 21 months and it seems as if she has already entered her terrible twos. Her temper tantrums are getting worse and more often. All week she has been waking up in the night and throwing temper tantrums for no reason. This goes on for hours every night. I am at my wit’s end.

The other night LP ran to the couch and wanted to sleep on the couch. Our home is baby proofed so I was ok with it as long as I got to sleep. I left LP bedroom door open just in case she wanted to go back to her room. In the morning I awoke to LP gone. Thinking she went to her bedroom I went to go check on her. This is what I found in the hallway.

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Parenting is hard but sometimes you just have to sit back and laugh.

happy parenting 🙂

Making up for Lost Time


So first of all I know I haven’t posted in FOREVER! and for that I am sorry. But I have been thinking about what I want to post about and there is so much that has gone unsaid.

Cloth related:

LP has been sporting disposables for a few weeks now for a few reasons. Because I just can get yeast out of her cloth. I have striped them like 7 different ways, sun dried them , bleached them so if you know something else that might work please leave a comment. I would be so greatful.

One Year Old Temper Tantrums:

Since LP has turned one she has been overwhelmed with emotions and she just doesn’t know how to deal with them except through temper tantrums. No reason to get myself upset over them I just set her on the floor and let the screaming go out on it’s own. It seems to be working I go about my business while she rolls and kicks and screams on the floor and since I have started that Tantrums have become shorter and less intense. LP (thankfully) is learning to deal with her frustrations in other ways.

Hitting and Biting:

With the retreat of the temper tantrums comes biting and hitting. which is only understandable ( imagine if you couldn’t talk and you were frustrated with something) So we have started “punishing” (lack of a better word) LP.

This is how it goes down. LP Bites/hits I hold her face under her chin so that she has no choice but to look at me in the face and I say “Oucky” twice then I sit her on the ground. at this point she is mad that she is getting punished so the temper tantrum begins but soon ends with my lack of interest. LP only has bit twice (hard) and hit once since we started “punishing” her. 🙂 pretty good.

In closing I have given you the very brief summary of the topics I wanted to write about but just didn’t have the time, and I am sorry about that. Chins up though my next post will be a review and giveaway on a toy!!!!! Excitement!

Happy parenting 🙂

Postpartum Anxiety


All new moms go through adjustments after bringing their child home from the hospital. They worry about how if their child is getting enough food, germs ( and everyone who carries them)  If the umbilical cord fell off too soon; But when the worrying  continues and gets worse, when is it time to go to the doctor and get it checked out.

Recently I went to the doctor because my anxiety (I have always had issues with anxiety) was getting to be very bad. Turns out I have Postpartum Anxiety. I have heard of postpartum depression but no one ever mentioned Postpartum Anxiety; so when I got home I did some research.

While most people have heard of postpartum depression, another disorder has also been known to affect women soon after their child is born. It is a condition called postpartum anxiety. Only a small fraction of new mothers will experience postpartum anxiety, with the number reaching upwards of 6 percent according to the American Psychological Association. But this disorder is often just as debilitating as postpartum depression, since its symptoms can be fairly severe and can put additional stress on the sufferers.

Symptoms:

  • Panic attacks
    • Panic attacks can bring on a shortness of breath, heart palpitations, chest pain, light-headedness, nausea and the chills or sweating.
    • Insomnia
    • Nervousness
    • Concentration
      • Lack of concentration or focus is one of this conditions hallmarks
      • Loss of appetite
      • Cognitive Changes
        • This symptom is more of a grouping of symptoms than would involve the cognitive processes of the woman, involving her memory, decisiveness, relaxation or responsibilities. All of these processes would most likely see a decrease in capacity so that the woman may not remember simple things. She may be unable to make decisions or relax. She may even difficulty completing errands or duties and other such things that are common day-to-day activities.

You may experience some or all of these symptoms.

For me I found my self worrying about everything from cleaning the house to getting the oil changed in the car to someone breaking in the house and taking Little Pumpkin. I was having panic attacks all the time and finally I decided to go to the doctor and get it checked out.

Now remember I said that I had anxiety issues before I was pregnant, so I dealt with the anxiety for about six months before I went to the doctor. My doctor was very worried and immediately prescribed medication to help me get this anxiety under control. No I am not one who enjoys being medicated and will try to avoid it as much as possible, But I just can go on feeling the way I do and I know I need Medication to help me feel like me again.  

I hope that my experience had brought a little more awareness in to your own life and if you don’t feel right, if you don’t feel like yourself talk to your doctor. It might be something you didn’t even know existed like me.

Losing a Parent and Becoming a Parent


Ok people in cyber land things are about to get personal.

I lost my mom  the summer of 2010. Three days before my wedding. Then a month later I found out I was pregnant. It’s hard losing a parent under any circemstance but a woman losing her mother right before she becomes  mother for the first time, opens up a whole new category of hard. I never knew how involved a mother is with her daughters’ pregnancy.

At my first few doctors appointments I would have nurses asking the routine questions and out of left field they would say something like “well if your mother had swollen feet when she was pregnant then you probably will to, so just give her a call and ask her.” I would just smile and nod. What am I suppose to say “oh my mom just passed.” No way; then that leads to “oh I am sorry” and looks of sympathy and I wasn’t not  in the mood for that from anyone.

I got little comments like this throughout  a lot of my pregnancy and I would just smile and nod.  The worse was the night after I had little pumpkin. I hadn’t slept for two days and LP was having a hard time nursing and would not stop crying. After hours, the nurse came in and offered to help.  As she was talking to me she said “It will be easier at home when you have your mom helping you.” I lost it. I started to bawl. This nurse had no idea why I was really crying she just held me and said that it was going to get better. Hubby (also exhausted) later told me that he wanted to cry too, because he heard what the nurse had said and knew that’s why I had started to cry.

I learned how to take care of LP without the help of my mother, so there was a lot of trial and error. I didn’t have my mom around in those first few weeks giving me a break to shower or giving me little tips that only a mother would know. Yeah I had my mother in law but that relationship just isn’t ’the same.  Now that LP is 7 months old I have gotten use to the fact that she will never know her grandma, and that my mom never got to meet her grandchild. Every once in while I will be watching LP doing something cute and think to myself, “I can’t believe you are missing this mom”.

My mother’s death has changed the way I take care of my self now that I am a parent. I don’t want LP to lose a parent at a young age; No one ever should. So although we don’t have my mom in our lives anymore I am so thankful for the family that we do have around and how much they all adore LP.

I’m a survivor


Since Little Pumpkin was a month old hubby and I have been so lucky to have a baby that sleeps through the night almost every night. My parents have always told the stories of how I was the perfect baby, “she cried the night she came home from the hospital and from then on slept through the night” you would hear my parents tell people whenever the subjects of babies came up. While I am sure I didn’t sleep through the night right out of the hospital, but I too have been blessed with a good sleeper.

Little Pumpkins day looks like this:

9am: wakeup and play with daddy

9:30: get changed and eat a bottle

Noon: Some solids and 4-6 ounce bottle

12:30pm:  Nap time

1:00pm: wakeup and play

2:30pm: Some solids and 4-6 ounce bottle

3pm: MOMMY IS HOME!

3:30pm: Daddy goes to work

4pm: Nap time

5:30pm: Wakeup  and eat Some solids and 4-6 ounce bottle

6:30pm: Bathtime

7pm: change in to bedtime diaper and PJ’s and Eat 6-8 ounce bottle

7:30pm: Sleeping

This has always been the way of Little Pumpkin, never complains, but for the last week she has been eating every hour it seems, waking up every two to three hours at night for feedings and chewing on everything she can get her hands on . She even tried to eat the cat! Mommy put a stop to that fast. So with every growing baby I am joining the many parents out there who have survived teething and growth spurts a there is only more to come. Not to mention the teen years, I remember how I was as a teen with my mom and I am not looking forward to being on the other side of that experience (karma).  So here’s to all you survivors out there in cyberland whether you are not getting sleep because your baby needs to be feed or your teen is out past curfew; I feel your pain.