After traveling out of town for a business trip last week, the idea of babysitting has been high on my mind. Luckily for me, my husband was available to watch Bee while I was away, making the process a bit easier than I had anticipated. Yet at some point in her baby’s new life, every mother has to rely on a trusted family member, friend, babysitter or nanny to take care of their little bundle. And although I’ll be releasing a more in-depth guide to babysitting in the next few weeks, a helpful starting point is the Official Babysitter’s Checklist below: a quick and easy form to leave on the kitchen counter or refrigerator before you run out the door. Here’s everything you need to include in your own checklist!:
Babies can be enigmas: they grow quickly and what excites them one moment might bore them to [literal!] tears the next. Yet there are a few foolproof games, activities and toys that seem to be universally loved at specific ages in our babies’ lives. Here are 10 of Bee’s current favorites at the ripe age of 6 months! Tell me, does your baby love these as much as we do?:
It was a typical harried morning – Bee and I had ventured out to grab breakfast and meet with a girlfriend and her son before running errands for the day. After devouring our food, it was clear the babies weren’t going to allow for a casual, leisurely conversation. Instead, we battled toddler tears, baby fussiness and multiple beverage spills, finally throwing up our hands and bidding farewell before we did any more damage to our favorite local cafe. After my girlfriend headed to the bathroom for her son’s third diaper change, I started to clean up our table’s mess. And then, a woman appeared.
We started sleep training little Bee over Christmas break (horrible timing, I know). Although she found herself in a fairly regular sleep rhythm at an early age, visits with family and holiday traveling meant a lot of inconsistencies, leaving little room for any sort of sleep pattern. She quickly fell out of her routine of 7pm – 6am snoozing and into a crazy night-owl-that-will-refuse-sleep-at-all-costs baby. It was trying, although nothing compared to what came next: sleep training.
Every December – as a new chapter closes and another waits patiently to be read aloud – I sit at my dining room table to make lists. Two lists, to be exact. One list contains the ubiquitous goals, resolutions and commitments I choose to shift my focus to in the new year. And the other list? It’s decidedly opposite, and I call it my list of non-goals. As a firm believer that humans are ever-evolving, changing, growing and learning, I like to make a practice of celebrating the ideals that shape me – at this very moment. The things I love about myself/my life, that I hope never change but inevitably will.
And as a new mother, this practice is all the more important, as I have so many non-goals to celebrate in the midst of this new journey. Enjoy 5 of my favorites below, and I encourage you to list your non-goals somewhere as well. I’ve found it to be incredibly therapeutic when we embrace stability – the things we love about ourselves – while welcoming change – the new habits we’d love to form. Onward, and Happy New Year to all!: