How your baby’s growing
Has your baby pulled himself upright yet? Yes? Then watch out – it’s a prelude to walking. Many babies are quite happy to stay grounded at this stage though. If he is, you’ll probably find he’s sitting more confidently now and he may well start creeping, crawling, or bottom-shuffling.
His language skills are developing rapidly too. He’s listening intently and taking in everything he hears – he may even begin to understand simple words and phrases. Encourage him by talking to him simply, but as you would to any other person. His personality is also emerging and you’ll be able to tell if he’ll be ‘Mr Life and Soul of the Party’ or ‘Mr Shy and Retiring’ by the way he responds to others.
How your life’s changing
When so much is going on with your baby, it’s easy to overlook your own needs. Make sure you carve out some time for yourself each week even if only for half an hour. You could meet a friend for a baby-free cup of coffee or sit in a cafe and read a newspaper without any interruptions. Or just go for a walk and enjoy the fresh air.
Snacking can be as critical for busy parents as it is for growing babies. Some ideas for keeping it healthy:
Carry healthy snacks with you. When you organise the changing bag for an outing, consider packing nutritious, easy-to-carry snacks for yourself. It will help you to resist the high fat, high sugar and often expensive options you’ll be tempted by when you’re out and about.
Stock up on healthy snacks. That way you won’t have to stop and make something every time you’re peckish. Some great choices: low-fat cereal bars, fresh fruit, dry servings of fortified cereal, raw vegetables plain or with yogurt dips, pots of yogurt, baked chips and salsa. Blend fresh or frozen fruits, milk and yogurt together for a nutrient-packed, satisfying smoothie.
Limit caffeine. This is particularly important if you’re breastfeeding. Drink plenty of water – plain, fizzy or fortified – to keep hydrated, or make your own flavoured water by adding a splash of fruit juice or a twist of lemon or orange. Herbal teas, hot or iced, come in countless refreshing flavours.
Parent tip: Safe bathing
“When my son got too big for his bath seat and was still too little for a big tub, we put him in a low plastic laundry basket inside the bath tub. It was perfect!” – Anita