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Your Baby Today: New Baby, New Mom: Caring For You: Quiet Times
Quiet Times By Carol Harding for Your Baby Today

Little does the word "quiet" appear in parenting articles. Has being quiet and having quiet time become non-existent in the world of children and families?

True, a household with young children is seldom quiet. Even the sounds we like - music, TV, sports, pets - can sometimes fill every space of our lives, making us feel exhausted. Has quietude become a rare treat?

There are many benefits of quietude: the mind and spirit are refreshed, things that typically go unnoticed get noticed, and the unappreciated aspects of our lives can be appreciated.

Here are ways to make a habit of, and to make the most of, quiet times:

  • Enjoying quiet moments can happen anytime, but it's important to schedule quiet time. Go to bed earlier than usual, wake up before everyone else in the home, walk to a quiet space to sit and breathe, or submerge yourself in a bath.
  • Be still in the quiet time. It's difficult to do nothing in our busy, goal-directed lives, but try. If you have to do something, try quiet activities like reading, sketching, or knitting.
  • Engage your baby (and the rest of your family) in your quiet habits. Nursing or holding your baby is a beautiful way to spend your quiet time.
  • Keep a "quiet" journal. Write down thoughts, dreams, and life stories to record the best of times and to get through the not-so-good times.
  • Be an advocate of quiet time. Busy people especially will benefit from, recognize, and enjoy quietude.

©Studio One Networks

Tips for Planning a Baby Shower

FeatureSource- Your sister or best friend just called with the news - she's having a baby! If it's your job to plan the baby shower, here's a list of Dos and Don'ts from Courtney Cooke's book, "The Best Baby Shower Book" (Meadowbrook Press).

DO plan ahead, and send invitations at least three weeks before the shower date.

DON'T give all infant clothing. Babies grow fast, and will soon be wearing larger sizes.

DO consider including men.

DON'T become so rushed with party organization that you don't have time to actually enjoy the party.

DO have fun with the decorations. Consider using decorations or centerpieces that can be given as gifts to mom-to-be.

DON'T plan a meal without knowing the dietary restrictions of the guests. You may need to provide alternatives to meat, alcohol, or calorie-laden refreshments.

DO serve foods that are easy to eat.

DON'T expect guests to eat a sit-down meal on their laps.

DO seat one or two detail-minded persons near the mom-to-be to handle wrappings and record the gifts.

DO consider personal gifts for the parents to give them a lift during stressful times.

DON'T plan a long, involved shower that would last more than three hours.

DO select useful prizes for the guests.

DON'T play games that would be embarrassing or awkward for the guests.

DO plan activities so that you, the parents, and all the guests will have an enjoyable time.

Tips for selecting a daycare provider

Advice That Will Put You to Sleep

FeatureSource - 47% of adults would like to improve the quality of their sleep, and 37 percent feel that they do not get enough sleep, according to a new survey conducted by the Better Sleep Council (BSC).

"Growing demands on our lives and endless "to do" lists can make it difficult to get enough sleep," says Andrea Herman, Director of the Better Sleep Council. "However, it's important to make sleep a priority and to strive to get the best quality sleep that we can."

"We all have too much to do, so make the most out of your time in bed. Sleep in a cool, quiet, dark room on a comfortable, supportive mattress to help ensure a great night's sleep. How well you sleep at night can make all the difference in how productive you'll be the next day," says Herman.

Because your mattress plays such an important role in how well you sleep, the Better Sleep Council recommends that you ask yourself the following questions:

-Do you wake up with pain, stiffness, or soreness?

-Are you not sleeping as well as you were a year ago?

-Was your best night's sleep somewhere other than your own bed?

-Does your mattress shows visible signs of wear and tear?

If you answered "yes" to any of these questions, your mattress could be affecting the quality of your sleep. An uncomfortable mattress can rob you of sleep, causing you to toss and turn and preventing you from deriving the full benefit of your time in bed. Sleeping on a mattress that meets your needs for comfort, support and space can help you sleep better.

"Your mattress is such an easy factor to control, yet so few people think about how comfortably they sleep or can sleep on their mattress," says Herman.

Here are ten tips to help you get the sleep you need and deserve:

1. GIVE YOURSELF "PERMISSION" TO GO TO BED. As hard as it may be to put away your "to do" list, make sleep a "priority." You'll thank yourself in the morning.

2. UNWIND EARLY IN THE EVENING. Try to deal with worries and distractions several hours before bedtime.

3. DEVELOP A SLEEP RITUAL. Doing the same things each night just before bed signals your body to settle down for the night

4. KEEP REGULAR HOURS. Keep your biological clock in check by going to bed around the same time each night and waking up close to the same time each morning - even on weekends.

5. CREATE A RESTFUL PLACE TO SLEEP. Sleep in a cool, quiet, dark room.

6. SLEEP ON A COMFORTABLE, SUPPORTIVE MATTRESS AND FOUNDATION. It's difficult to sleep on a bed that's too small, too soft, too hard, or too old.

7. EXERCISE REGULARLY. Regular exercise can help relieve daily tension and stress - but don't exercise too close to bedtime or you may have trouble falling asleep.

8. CUT DOWN ON STIMULANTS. Consuming stimulants, such as caffeine, in the evening can make it more difficult to fall asleep.

9. DON'T SMOKE. Smokers take longer to fall asleep and wake up more often during the night.

The "Better Sleep Guide," a 16-page brochure that provides simple solutions to help improve the quality of your life by improving the quality of your sleep, as well as information on how your bedroom and mattress can affect the quality of your sleep, is available free to consumers. Send your request to: Guide, P.O. Box 19534, Alexandria, VA 22320-0534.

For more information on getting a good night's sleep or to download a copy of the "Better Sleep Guide," visit the Better Sleep Council's Web site at

Don't Sweat Guide for Parents
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Hectic work schedules combined with chauffeuring children to extracurricular activities make us crave more quiet time with our children. The Don't Sweat Guide for Parents provides suggestions for enjoying your children more while being less stressed and more present with them in every moment of their lives.

Mom's Busy Book
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Know a busy Mom? Is there any other kind? This handy organizer book is divided into brightly colored tabbed sections to make recording and retrieving information a breeze. No more time wasted looking for the kids' immunization records, the plumber's telephone number or the carpool schedule. Mom can record all this helpful information and much more in Mom's Busy Book

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Whether you have just 60 seconds or 60 minutes, you'll find quick tips, frank advice, and one-of-a-kind ideas to touch the heart of every parent.Shows how a fulfilling sex life is a definite possibility during the whirlwind, child-rearing days.

>If you have kids, you NEED the Wheel!

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