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Parenting 101

A Beginner Course in Creative Parenting

Baby loves breastmilk but it doesn't love him?

Help! Our 16 day old adopted baby seems to have issues when we give him breastmilk, but not formula. He loves the taste of breastmilk and sucks in down no problem (during the day his bottles are half formula half breastmilk). He struggled with painful constipation around the time we first started adding breast milk but the doc said his poop consistency was good and it was just his little body growing and relearning itself. We started using mylicon that day - same day we got approved to leave his birth state for home. That was a two day trip so we had him just on formula for those days through today (Friday afternoon through this afternoon). The constipation got better which we assumed was the mylicon.

Today he sucked down breast milk like it was going out of style and has been acting constipated and in pain. Different mom's milk, he loved the taste but now I'm wondering if it's breast milk that's causing his issues. The start and pauses in his agitation and straining and screaming seem to line up. He's also insatiable and needs to be fed way more often with it - like once every 1.5 hours instead of every 3-4.
The formula isn't anything special - just regular enfamil - so I don't think it's a lactose issue. Usually I hear of formula being constipation not bm and we are trying to do right by him by giving donor milk but we don't know what to do :( help?

Sorry for bad typing - one handed on phone.

Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

Airplanes and car seats
I know this question comes up a lot in various forms so sorry for the repeat. Does anyone who has the Graco MyRide 70 Headwise know if it will fit in an airplane seat?

Also, in case it does not, does anyone have a suggestion for a 2 year old in his own seat who I am sure is going to fall asleep? I don't want to be stuck holding him the entire flight (plus I'm sure I can't) but I don't know if he's going to be able to sit in the seat and sleep. I'm hoping I can just strap him into his car seat and that's that but it's pretty big.

The flight is 3.5 hours and he isn't napping right now so I know he's going to fall asleep. HALP.

help me Dr. P101!
Creature from the Black Lagoon!
I swear I only ever need a doctor on the weekend.

My daughter (4) was coughing a bit yesterday and then this morning woke up coughing, coughed some throughout the day, and then has been coughing terribly tonight.  It's a productive sounding cough much of the time (phlegmy sounding).

The weird thing is that she has had no sinus issues (runny nose or any sinus congestion) and has no other symptoms.  In googleing, everything, bronchitis, etc., says that it's after a cold or part of a cold, with the exception of allergies or asthma, which I'm having a hard time believing.  Does it seem reasonable that allergies or asthma would just pop up randomly literally out of nowhere?  We are constantly outside and have never had a problem.

What do you think?  Also, do you think she's contagious with just a cough and no sinus stuff or any other symptoms?

I'd really appreciate any advice

Room cooling options

Our house in DC is humid and hot in the top level master bedroom which is like an attic loft. It is always about five-ten degrees hotter up there than the rest of the house.

We are bringing our newborn home from Louisiana where he was born on Monday and we plan to have him in our room. We need an option to cool the room but an expensive air conditioner isn't appealing and fans can't really be blowing directly on the baby, and the only middle ground I can find is something called an evaporative cooler. Apparently these work best in dry climates but I can't figure out how they work or if it would work at all where we are; we like that it's also a humidifier as that's nice for baby.

Thoughts/ideas? The room is huge - 600 square feet - but there's one section that he will be in and we don't care if something is awkwardly in the middle of the room. Just can't be directly on baby.


Posted via LiveJournal app for iPhone.

Keeping young preschoolers entertained while on vacation

For the month of August, we will be spending time with my husbands family at their summer house in Greece. We will have limited TV, if any, and no internet access. My 3 year old is the type who doesn't sit well for colouring and flutters around the room wanting constant entertainment. While I do think this will be a good test for her, I also need to keep our sanity and her semi quiet/busy during napping hours when the baby and grandparents like to rest. Can anyone recommend some holiday must haves?

Here is what we have so far...

1. Pop up beach tent which we will be using often. But given that it will be HOT, the beach is pretty much not an option during peak sun hours
2. Appropriately aged brain quest flash cards and workbooks
3. Cutting activity book and toddler appropriate scissors
4. Melissa and doug magnetic dress up dolls
5. Appropriately aged games on iPad
6. A few new books
7. A few new movies

I'm going to pick up play doh and arts and crafts supplies when there, as well as a paddling pool. But any other great activities for kids of must haves I should bring from here? August is a dead month in Greece as everyone is on vacation. Soft play doesn't open until after 5pm, parks are too hot, no toddler groups or kid activities for that age group.


Your newborn night time routine
Hi again - thanks for your feedback on the rice cereal; I gave it all to our birthmom as her 13-month-old eats it a lot. If we need to buy some for any reason down the road we can since it's so cheap.. regardless 20395802935 containers of rice cereal isn't exactly something we want to haul home on the drive from Louisiana to DC.

ANOTHER question!

Can you tell us about your newborn night time routine if you remember it? As we're stuck in a hotel room until we can pass the legal clearances to go home, we've both been getting up together. It usually looks like this:

10:30/11 p.m. - baby eats; we cuddle him and burp him for probably 20 minutes and then he goes down in his bassinet. (Note we cuddle him pretty much all day - we're attachment parenting as much as possible right now so this is usually the only time he's in his bassinet and it's working well!)

2:30 - if baby hasn't woken up yet, we wake him up. Husband starts to change his diaper while I wet the gauze (we're not using wipes right now), I make his bottle, etc. We put him in a cloth diaper - he's likely to pee or poop in the next 30 minutes - and I feed him while Brian cleans up the diaper mess. Then i cuddle him for 10-20 minutes against my chest while Brian sanitizes the bottles (because why not). Then one of us changes his diaper again if it needs it, and we settle back down.

The problem? This all takes like 45 minutes. How can we simplify this at home when we'll take turns doing wakeup duty so we can both get more sleep? We can avoid sanitizing bottles at night but it isn't really saving us any time since it's being done while i'm cuddling him.

So it's going:
-change him while he gets fussy
-make bottle
-feed him - he's a great eater
-elevated cuddling/burping
-change again when he's basically asleep
-back to bed.

We're first time parents so I know we're overthinking everything. Your insight is helpful and feel free to mock our ridiculousness.

Flying with an 11 month old
DotA Shaeldre Strong
Later this month I'm flying from CA to MA (approximately 5.5 hour flight) with my 11 month old. She will be sitting on one of our laps - we're flying with my husband and my mom. The flight is in the middle of the day (adjusting for time zones it will be from 1:15pm - 6:45pm). I'm hoping we can get a nap in while she's on the plane.

She's generally a pretty happy baby, but since she learned to crawl/pull up she can get really mad if she's forced to stay in one place for long. Which is basically going to be this whole flight. So any advice would be appreciated! :)


I checked the tags but all the posts in the tag are pretty old and many deal with either toddlers or younger babies, so I hoped it wouldn't hurt to ask again!

Dear Abby Letter: Thoughts?
I wanted to solicit some opinions on today's Dear Abby Letter (http://news.yahoo.com/wandering-grandchild-must-taught-respect-boundaries-050012387.html). It reads:

"DEAR ABBY: We were visiting my daughter and her husband when their 3-year-old, "Bethany," entered our room and rummaged through our medications. The door to the guest room was closed and the medications had been placed on a desk. Of course, everyone thought she had ingested some, so they rushed her to the ER. We were fortunate that nothing was found in her system.

My son-in-law thinks we should help pay the medical bills. I have sent several hundred dollars, but he is asking for more.

Bethany is an only child, and they allow her free reign of the house. I have other grandchildren who are even younger, and none of them would dream of touching something that wasn't theirs.

It has been almost a year since the incident, and they still haven't taught her to respect and leave things alone that are not hers. My daughter is a professional and her husband works from home, which concerns me because he isn't as strict as I feel is necessary.

Are we obligated to help with more of her medical expenses? I don't think so because we have already helped, and I don't think it's our job to teach our grandchild boundaries. -- OHIO GRANDMA"

I'm not asking about the medical bills, but whether or not Grandma or the parents are at fault with regards to the 3 year old getting into the medications. For me, I thought the answer was somewhere in the middle (that both parties share in the blame), but the comments on the article are all pro Grandma and arguing that the parents are SO in the wrong in this, and I wanted to solicit some thoughts from some other parents.

Parental controls and media devices….
I will be the first to admit that my 9 and 4-year-old hands down are better at operating my tablets than I am. I shy away from technology, mainly because I just don’t understand it, don’t really like it, other than e-mail and lj- which is totally sporadic- don’t really use it. However, public schools use it a ton, heavily with the home-school connection and it became mandatory for ELEMENTARY students to essentially be connected, and by connected I mean my wall jack connection without WI-FI only in my bedroom couldn’t cut it anymore. So, we made a tough decision and had our home completely re-wired so we could accommodate WI-FI. And if you really want to know how media retarded we are-- our oldest told us to close the door the other day, we asked her why, she told us she wasn’t getting good internet connection, goodness only knows how long she was going around life thinking open doors let out the WI-FI…now that I’ve typed that…it doesn’t does it?
Kids are very limited on media. The 4-year-old pretty much is more like dad and I, she could care less, never wants to play tablet, never watches TV, she’s our very outdoorsy, orientated towards the animals, would rather chase chickens and help with chores than doing anything sedentary. She doesn’t need limits as she never surpassed what they would have been. Our oldest, whereas is extremely active and athletic, would be a media zombie if we allowed. She gets the option to earn 45 minutes of tablet time each day based off behavior. She’s always (always meaning for the past 4 months we’ve been connected) played Deer Hunter on my Kindle Fire (which was created by my uncle, so I can’t not let her, plus she raises and helps process her own meat so I can’t condemn fake killing of animals when it’s a reality in her life) and those silly nail/hair/make-up/pluck my nose hairs/etc games. We’ve talked about internet safety, I have in-app purchasing blocked, I check her games- as in pathetically attempt to play them- to make sure she can’t actually connect with others and I’m usually close when she is playing.
So, the other day I opened my browser and on the list of recently viewed sites was porn. Opened up history, her whole 45 minutes over two days was spent looking at porn. Actually, our bitch is in heat right now, her poor vulva is about 10x it’s normal size and our inability to take her anywhere has been a hot topic (and her constantly humping a friends dog we were sitting, she’s a hormonal teenager), it started with ‘female dog private parts’, then ‘male dog private parts’, and progressed into some full blown people porn, photos and video. I did re-look at what she looked at, it’s porn.
We had another talk about internet safety, accessing porn and about sex. I realize this should have been preemptive, but it wasn’t, so if you have kids and haven’t yet, put some kind of filter on those devices! I was around, but not watching over her shoulder, and nor do I plan on doing that.
But that’s not my question….
In your opinions, what is the best content blocker for a Kindle Fire? Computer? How about a generic tablet that runs explorer and chrome? I want to allow her internet access, she does a lot of very good research on them, I just don’t want that research to be about porn.

Clammy baby?
Seeking advice before we (I) hit full on panic mode. My daughter is 8 months old and her head (just her head) is really clammy. It is cool to the touch, but all kinds of sweaty. I first noticed it a few days ago, but didn't really think anything of it. I live in Arizona, where the temperatures reach ungodly degrees. Our house is well A.C.ed and she seems fine once she's in the crib and out of my bed. She's still very happy and acting normal for the most part. She has no fever, however, her appetite has changed. She's not nursing as long and she has zero interest in her Gerber foods. Today she ate a total of half of a Gerber second foods container.

My husband thinks both may be related to teething. (She's drooling like crazy and chewing on everything in sight). I've tried googling information, but all that did was confuse me more than anything else. Some said to head immediately to the E.R. as the clammy skin was sign of heart failure, others say it is totally normal, some say it's part of teething, etc. etc. I couldn't find anything recent (2011 was as recent as it got.)

I'm probably going to take her to the all night urgent care, just because I'm starting to hit panic mode (thank you Google). Thoughts?

Why does my daughter suddenly hate her bath time?
Surma and Raynard
The past week or so, my almost 3 year old daughter suddenly has decided she LOATHES her bath time. She'll throw a fit and refuse to let us even get the diaper off.

And forget shampooing her hair. That has gone from a once or twice event that she tolerated to we're lucky to get it done once a week.

My husband and I are at the end of our rope here. Is this a phase that she'll grow out of? Is there anything I can do to make it easier? Note that bribes of candy and stickers don't work. :/

Posted via m.livejournal.com.

Eczema question.
Thanks everyone for your responses to my post about nail biting. I didn't get a chance to respond to everyone individually, but I really appreciate the comments! I've never dealt with nail biting in myself or anyone close to me, so I didn't realize what an issue it could be down the road, so we're looking into ways to get ds to stop asap.

Now, however, I have a different question. For those who have kids with eczema and who use a prescription strength steroid cream, how often do you use it? We've battled eczema on and off since my son was born, and it was never really terrible until this summer started. I'm sure it's because of the warmth, sweat, him swimming all the time, etc, but after he had angry red patches behind both knees and his elbows, I took him into the pediatrician. We got a prescription for Triamcinolone cream with instructions to apply a thin layer to any patches until they go away, and use on any flare ups that come up. He also had us switch to a daily cream with no fragrance (we chose Cetaphil) with instructions to apply at least twice a day. We've been doing that and within 3 days his skin had a HUGE improvement. The patches were gone and his skin was no longer scaly. So I stopped with the prescription cream... and behind his one knee the patch is coming back. I put some cream on, it went away, then was back again. I can't get it to STAY away, and using the steroid cream so often is making me nervous. Is this typical for those who suffer from eczema? Is using steroid cream this often what would be considered "normal"? I'm applying a very thin layer but using it a couple of times a week :/. Am I doing something wrong?

I'm attaching a photo so you can see what I'm dealing with. It doesn't look bad there but IT. KEEPS. COMING. BACK.


photo behind cutCollapse )

stroller for 4 year old?
How old is too old for a stroller?

Context: We have a 4 year old son who is a normal kid and therefore...tough to take with on outings when walking is the way to get around. We are moving from the US to southern germany and will be doing a lot of travel and a lot of that travel/site seeing means lots of walking. I wasn't sure if a stroller was an option any more for my kid or if thats just bizarre because of his age. I'm seriously considering getting a SSC for him (I've seen one that is like a boba but for kids up to 65lbs and he's currently 48 lbs and just grew out of our boba which I've used extensively.). I definitely prefer to carry him on my back than try to wrestle with a stroller and I have no problem carrying him around for hours (don't have to go to the gym!).


Opinions and experience, welcome.

Itch Prevention
I'd like to prevent my 4 month old and 5 year old from getting mosquito bites when we're out and about this summer. I will not use DEET or products containing DEET. Do you guys have any other suggestions of things that I can use to keep the mosquitoes away from my kids that don't contain DEET? The more natural, the better.

Thank you!

Outdoor play set
Girl Umbrella
Hi Parenting101,

I am wanting to purchase an outdoor Play set for my daughter for Christmas: Swing, slide, accessories. She will be two and is my only child (and likely to be my only child due to health issues)
It was going to be my main present and I was only going to get a few other things like books etc. She loves going to the park and, just like at the park, I considered this something that her and I would play on together - or at least with my supervision (of course she is welcome to play on her own in the future).

However, my mum has mentioned to me this may be sort've... a crap present! (She meant well)
She said that in her experience children don't want to play on these sorts of things on their own, or even with mum supervision... it's just not the same as playing with other kids. So she said it'll probably just sit there, unused, and get rusty.

My question is, what do you think? Do you have one and would you child/ren play with it if they were on their own?

Thanks :)

Toddler hair washing
XKCD, Cuttlefish
My 15 month old FINALLY has hair long enough that I think I need to wash it, but she got shampoo in her eyes when I tried and cried hysterically, so obvs I'm doing something wrong.

The problem is that googling only gives me suggestions for toddlers old enough to close their eyes on command and babies young enough to be reclining in the tub. What do you do with the inbetween kids? Recommendations for environmentally friendly and SDS-free tear-free shampoos?

Ravenous Three Year Old?
Garden State
Hi P101.

So, I'm at a loss as to what to do with my three year old, and am wondering if anyone else has weathered a similar storm.

Everything is about food. Breakfast isn't even over before she wants to know if she can have a snack, or what we're having for lunch. Immediately after every meal (which she finishes nearly every time) she wants something else. It's no exaggeration to say that every few sentences out of her mouth is about whether or not she can have a snack. If we tell her it's not snack time, she'l try to go for the pantry or refrigerator, anyway.

She's a really good eater, and has no problem with fruits or veggies, which we eat plenty of. We don't have much junkfood in our house.

I think she's wanting to eat for recreation, or for the pleasure of having something tasty. Also, she's recently a middle child (our son is almost 5, and our youngest daughter is 8 months old), and I wonder if this is a way for her to act needy to see if we'll accommodate her.

We've started occasionally having talks with our kiddos about how food isn't just about being yummy, but how it's to keep our bodies healthy, growing, and to give us energy during the day. We like to mix it up and are just as apt to have a classic, American meal one night, then to have Korean or Japanese dishes the following nights. Actually, it's usually the nights we go for more cultural fare that she loves the most.

Our son is apt to ask about food, too. Just not nearly to the same degree as our daughter. And he only recently began asking, mainly it seems, because she asks, first.

So, yeah. I'm not sure I'm asking for advice, per se (gladly taking it, though!), but just want to see if anyone else has been through the same sort of thing. She's not too prone to tantrums over food. She's just incessant to an admirable, if not bewilderingly degree about how much she thinks she wants and needs food.

Also, we've never been in a position to be wanting food. Our kids have never gone without, and she's never tried hiding or stealing food, so I don't think it has anything to do with a fear of going hungry.

Thanks for reading this. Thoughts? Tactics? Just continue to be patient?

double stroller question
We're expecting our second baby in December. By the time the baby comes our daughter will be almost three. I will be staying home with the two of them for at least eight months, so I realize that I need to do some planning about how I will negotiate outings with the two of them.

Do you think we will need to get a double stroller, or will our older daughter be past stoller age by then? Do you have any double stroller recommendations or models to avoid? Ease of transport and storage are both very important factors.

Allergy laser treatment
If you have a child with severe seasonal/food allergies, would you try laser treatments? From everything I research, allergists say there's no proof it works, while tons of people on forums about it say they've tried it and it actually worked for them/their kids. I don't know anyone personally, so I was wondering if anyone here has tried it or was looking into it. We've seen several Groupons/Living Social deals go by with it and with my son and husband's horrible seasonal allergies, it's looking better and better by the day.

Toddler sleeping while traveling.

My 19 month old has been a pretty good sleeper, but typically only in his own crib at home. Last summer we took a couple of overnight trips and the whole family ended up as miserable zombies because everyone slept poorly. This past weekend we went to a cabin and hoped my son would do better being a whole year older. We brought the pack n play and figured he'd either sleep in that at the foot of our bed or in bed with us. We tried the pack n play, screams. Okay, in bed with us. He was happy as a clam in bed with us but just COULD. NOT. SETTLE. he was jumping on the bed, rolling around, he kept seeming like he was drifting off the pop up and go "HI!" Lol. No amounts of my husband and I saying "it's time for NIGHTY. NIGHT. did anything. After about 2 hours of this we tried the pack n play, and while he didn't cry, he still couldn't settle because he saw us. He was still waving, going "HI!", barking like a dog, showing us his stuffed bunny, etc etc. it would have been cute if it wasn't 3am at this point. Finally, we decided to try putting him in the pack n play in the other bedroom. We set up the monitor and gave him a book and his bunny, and watched at he flipped through his book a bit, then laid down and WENT TO SLEEP. He then slept until 9:30am, and slept great for every other nap and bedtime for the rest of the trip.

Long story short, this is now opening up a whole new world of being able to travel with my son without being totally sleep deprived, it just looks like the ticket is that he needs to be by himself to settle down. He's always been the type that he'll read/play for a bit in his crib until going to sleep, I just never realized how exciting my husband and I were lol. Anyone else have a kid like this? How do you travel? We have a trip in a couple of weekends to a one room cabin and I'm wondering if there's a way to block his view in some way so that he can't see us. We also have a one week trip in August that I'd REALLY like to figure something out for, but the whole family is sharing a bedroom for that one. Any suggestions?

Also, he was in his pack n play for this trip, but he's looking pretty tall in it and I'm wondering how much longer he'll be able to be in it. He's not a climber but he is determined. What do your kids sleep in when traveling after they grow out of the pack n play?


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