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Working Parent Tips

Working Parent Tips | Lullaby Earth Blog

For more and more working parents, work-life balance is becoming even more desirable. You don’t want meetings to take precedence over soccer games and you don’t want to pause playtime to answer an email. In the same accord, you don’t want your work to suffer either.

It is possible to not only work and parent, but also succeed at both! We spoke to three of our very own working parents to see  how they manage maintaining success in their career and still enjoy quality time with their children.

 

You don’t have to be at every event...just the big ones

You are a parent. Your kids are the most important thing to you. So even as a working parent, you want to be there for every practice and event. Don’t hold yourself to that standard because not even stay-at-home parents do. To lessen the load, don’t be afraid to be picky about what you attend.

If you follow this advice, you won’t have to constantly worry about leaving work on time, and you will still be there for the occasions that count.

 

Multitask your preparations

Since mornings are no doubt chaotic and daytime is out of the question since you are working, after work is your best bet for getting your kids bags all assembled and their lunches packed. As a working parent, this may be your time to focus on the kids, but don’t forget to prepare yourself as well so you aren’t scrambling at work the next day. 

“Pack your own lunch the night before, too! I can get focused on making sure the kids needs are taken care of that I neglect myself. When you’re packing kids lunches, don’t forget yours as well,” Hilary T. says.

 

When you have time for outings, make them as stress-free as possible

No matter where you work, it’s bound to be stressful at points. That’s why when you have time with your kids, you don’t want that to carry on during these moments. When you find time outside of work to enjoy the zoo with your kids or take them shopping, try to set aside just a few minutes beforehand to pack a bag.

“Pre-planning is important. Have food and things ready for kids anywhere you are going to go,” Arin S. says.

This way, the time you get with your kids is fun and relaxed versus stressed and chaotic.

 

Embrace the little moments

As a working parent, time with your little ones is precious. Even when with them, however, it’s normal to get stressed about work. To truly balance parenthood and career, you need to take active steps to be fully in the moment for both.

“I don’t use my phone while I’m playing with them unless it’s to take a cute picture. We also have dinner together every night,” Jaime R. says. 

And as Jaime went on to explain, sometimes these little moments are worth a change in schedule...even if it means going in to work a little later than you had hoped.

How do you balance family life and being a working parent? Let us know in the comments!

Tackling The Toddler Bed Transition

Tackling The Toddler Bed Transition

Transitions are challenging, regardless of age or situation. They can be even more difficult when the one making the transition is too young to understand the need for the change. You are a parent of a toddler now, which means your life is filled with changes and growth, and sometimes it feels overwhelming.

One of the changes you and your little one will soon face is the transition from a crib to a toddler bed. We know there are questions that come with the change, and we want to tackle a few of them.

Please remember to always consult your child’s pediatrician before transitioning them to a toddler bed.

 

When is the right time to transition a toddler?

 

Unlike many other toddler transitions, there isn’t an exact “right” time to make the toddler bed change— but there are several safety factors that are important to consider. The general rule is to make the transition before your child is able to climb out of the crib because that can lead to injuries. Typically, toddlers are able to climb out of the crib when they reach 35-37 inches, and most parents choose to make the transition between ages 2-3.

Some parents postpone the transition until ages 3-4 to prevent middle-of-the-night waking and wandering. If you choose to wait, here are a few tips to keep your child safe:

Lower the mattress to the floor.This prevents your child from climbing and falling.

Turn the crib around. Be sure the side with the higher bars faces outward. This makes it more difficult for children to escape.

Baby-proof the surrounding areas. One of the most common issues parents face during this time is wandering. When children are able to climb out of the crib, they will. Make sure their room and the surrounding rooms are safe, just in case.

 

How can we make the toddler bed transition go smoothly?

 

Unfortunately, there is no way to guarantee an easy toddler bed transition, but there are a few strategies you can try!

Make it a big deal. Kids are always in a rush to grow up, aren’t they? Use that to your advantage. Play up the fact that this is a step toward your child becoming a “big kid,” and they will be more motivated to make it work.

Emphasize independence. As kids get older, they crave independence and responsibility. Explain the importance of changing beds by stressing the fact that you trust them to be more independent. It’s also a good idea to include your child as you set up a sleep schedule and create bedtime rules. Work together to figure out a time to go to bed. Ask your child which activity they want to do before falling asleep (reading, talking, etc.). When children feel like they are part of the decision-making, they are more likely to cooperate for a positive result.

Get excited! Kids often feed off enthusiasm—if you’re excited, they will be excited! Take your child to the store to pick out new sheets and blankets for his/her new big kid bed.

With the help of these tips and tricks, tackling the toddler bed transition can be fun and simple!

12 Potty Training Hacks

potty training hacks

Potty training your toddler might seem like an overwhelming and daunting task. And we won’t sugar coat it - sometimes it DOES get overwhelming! But these potty training hacks will help you get through it a little more easily. Read our 12 potty training hacks and feel free to share your own when you’re done.

 

1. Remove the Pants: If you can strip your toddler naked from the waist down, this tends to work best, especially for kids who don’t realize they need to go until it’s time to go. The trick here is that they’ll immediately realize the connection between the potty and a major cleanup on aisle three (and hence an interruption of whatever they were doing). This plan works best for parents with patience and willingness to accept the risks of pantsless potty training. But many parents swear by this method!

 

2. Use the Potty Backwards:This one is great for boys and girls who get easily distracted or haven’t mastered the art of aiming. By using the small training potty - or even the big toilet - facing the “back” of the potty, you have a designated catch zone that means they won’t be leaking out the front of the potty and making a mess everywhere else in the bathroom

 

3. Set a Timer: Set a timer (on your phone, on the microwave, or use a special potty timer) for every 30-45 minutes and have your child sit on the potty whenever the timer goes off. If they go, celebrate and praise them with your reward of choice (be it a special high five, a sticker, a treat, or anything else). If they don’t, go back to playtime and try again next time the timer goes off.

 

4. Use an App: There are a variety of apps available for your smartphone or tablet to make potty training easier. Some are designed to entertain or educate the kids about the potty, while others are useful tools for mom or dad to keep track of timing and progress. Check out The New Potty - Little Critter (for $1.99 on the Apple App Store for iPad and iPhone) and Potty Training Kids Learning With Animals (free on the Apple App Store for iPad and iPhone). For Android devices, try Daniel Tiger’s Stop & Go Potty ($2.99).

 

5. Select 2-3 Designated Potty Books: Keep some books for entertainment in the bathroom while pottying, but don’t switch them out to keep your child interested. This isn’t about reading, it’s about you-know-what. Keep a library of two to three designated potty books. As the books get a little boring and predictable, the bathroom will become more about doing their business and getting back to the fun stuff.

 

6. Sing a Song: Make up (or borrow from your child’s favorite show or book) a song about potty training to make each trip to the potty entertaining and add a sense of ritual. This could be as simple as singing “wipe, flush, and wash your hands” to a favorite tune or making up new lyrics to the tune of a popular song.

 

7. Use a Disposable Changing Pad: This one is a great life hack for potty training. Use a disposable changing pad or even a puppy training pad to place in your child’s car seat or anywhere else you need to avoid a mess when you’re not sure if you’ll have trouble making it to a bathroom on the go.

 

8. Use Incontinence Pads or Pantiliners: It’s one thing to rinse out and wash an accidental leak, but cleaning up an accidental poo should be avoided at all costs. Place a small pantiliner or incontinence pad in your child’s undies for easier cleanup of #2 accidents.

 

9. Pack the Sticky Notes: This hack is for public toilets with automatic flushing mechanisms. A sudden flush before your child is ready can scare them and set you back in the potty training process. Savvy parents keep a pack of sticky notes in their arsenal to place one over the sensor on an automatic toilet. No flushing until you’re ready!

 

10. Mark the Point of No Return: Use decorative tape to mark the “do not pass” zone for toilet paper. Kids are still figuring out how much they need, so set the mark at a few squares’ length so they can get used to appropriate toilet paper usage.

 

11. Designate Kids-Only Toilet Paper: Giving your child their own roll of toilet paper is a small hack that makes a big difference. They’ll be so excited to have a sense of control since parents aren’t allowed to use this roll and might be extra excited to use the potty for their special toilet paper.

 

12. Make a To-Go Bag: Sure, keeping your kid pantsless at home is easiest, but when you need a trip to the grocery store or have to leave the house for a playdate, you’ll need to be prepared. Pack your training pants, underwear, sticky notes, a potty book, and anything else you need.

 

There you have it - 12 hacks for potty training to make things easier on you AND your little one. Potty training is hard work, so every little thing helps until you find the trick that works best for your family. Of course, we also recommend a waterproof pad for your child’s crib or toddler mattress, like the Breeze Breathable Crib Mattress Pad, which maximizes airflow for a more comfortable sleep and has a waterproof backing to keep those nighttime accidents from becoming a nightmare.

 

If you're still not sure if your child is ready to potty train read on for 5 Signs Your Child Is Ready To Potty Train.

5 Signs Your Child Is Ready To Potty Train

potty training tips

June is Potty Training Awareness Month, and we’ve got some tips for you! You may be ready to say goodbye to diapers, but your little one might not be there yet. Or they may be begging for big kid undies while you’re worried about accidents and thinking it’s way too early to potty train. What’s the right answer? We’re outlining these five signs that your child is ready to potty train so you can make the right choice for your family to get started today or wait it out a while longer.

Sign #1: Pulling at a Dirty Diaper

If your child fusses and pulls at their soiled diaper, it shows awareness around their bodily functions. They can tell that their diaper is soiled and want to get cleaned up immediately! This is a great time to get started with communication about the potty, since you can take advantage of the fact that your little one wants to stay clean.

Sign #2: Telling You About a Dirty Diaper

This is an even bigger sign, since your child can use their words to communicate. Your child might tell you right before or after they go, and sometimes you can even make it to the potty before it happens!

Sign #3: Using Appropriate Potty-Related Words

If your child can communicate their need to use the potty (whether you use “pee-pee” or “number one” or “urinate”), you’re well on your way to being ready. This shows that they understand what’s going on and they’ll start to connect their “potty words” to their body cues that they need to go, pronto.

Sign #4: Staying Dry

If your child stays dry and doesn’t need a wet diaper change for over two hours at a stretch, you may be ready to potty train. This shows a better control of the bladder and an ability to “hold it” a little longer if needed. Another great sign is if your child wakes up dry from a nap!

Sign #5: Giving You an Audience

It’s no fun for mom or dad, but if your child wants to watch YOU use the potty, they may be ready to mimic and copy your behavior and get used to using the toilet themselves. We can’t promise when you’ll get your privacy back, parents - sorry!

Whichever method of potty training you use, you should know that some kids get it right away and some kids take a while to fully master the potty. It’s completely normal for a child to be potty trained for “number one” but not “number two” - or vice versa - for as long as several months. Also, your child may be completely potty trained during the day but still needs a diaper for night time. These are all variations of normal, so don’t panic! Stay patient and keep your chin up, potty training doesn’t last forever.

Breeze Breathable Crib Mattress PadTo make an easier transition, our Breeze Breathable Crib Mattress Pad not only provides a breathable surface for better airflow and a comfortable sleep, but also features a waterproof backing and machine washable convenience. It’s perfect for potty-training toddlers who are prone to accidents or night-time leaks.

When Should I Flip A 2-Stage Crib Mattress?

When to Flip A 2-Stage Crib Mattress

A 2-Stage crib mattress is a practical choice that offers long-lasting performance through the toddler years. You simply flip the mattress from the infant side to the toddler side for a cushion firm feel and a big kid transition! But when is the right time to flip?

Step 1: Identify Each Side

The 2-Stage crib mattresses have a tag sewn into the seam that lets you know which side is for infants and which side is for toddlers. The infant side of the mattress is extra firm, designed for the flat, firm surface babies need for safety. The toddler side is cushion firm for a little more comfort.

Step 2: Flip The Mattress

When you’re ready to transition from the infant side to the toddler side, simply flip the mattress over! Check with your pediatrician before flipping or adding accessories like blankets and toddler pillows. Most children transition around the age of one year, but each baby has different needs and your pediatrician can give you the go-ahead to make the switch.

Important Safety Tips

Lullaby Earth crib mattresses are designed for safety and feature a firm, flat surface as recommended by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). The CPSC recommends that you put your baby to sleep on their back, alone in the crib, with no soft toys or bedding.

Any Questions?

Whether you get a Breeze Breathable 2-Stage Crib Mattress or our Healthy Support 2-Stage Crib Mattress, we’re here to answer all your questions! Let us know how we can help you make a safer transition into the toddler years.