Keeping Your Toddler Safe At Night

Toddler bed with removable safety rail, and toddler climbing carefully around it.While the risk of SIDS is greatly reduced by the time an infant reaches the age of one, parents of toddlers should still be concerned about and take action to ensure their child’s safety. The three greatest steps a parent can take are to make the crib/bed safe, childproof the room for mobile toddlers, and monitor their toddler.

Make Their Crib/Bed Safe

You can breathe a sigh of relief when your child turns one that your fears of SIDS haven’t come true, but don’t get careless with your toddler’s nighttime safety. Suffocation is still a risk that you should take steps to minimize. Don’t let your toddler sleep with too many toys, especially plush toys or stuffed animals. Don’t put any toys with ropes or strings near the bed. While your child can now sleep with a blanket, continue to limit blankets, quilting, and other bedding to what is necessary. Try to wait until your child is at least 18 months old to introduce a pillow, and only do so when the pillow will help them be more comfortable and sleep better, which may not be until they are three years or more. All of these actions can protect from suffocation and give you peace of mind when your little one is sleeping.

One of the biggest questions parents of toddlers face is when to transfer their child to a “big boy” or “big girl” bed. For safety, wait as long as you can for this transition. Many parents make the switch when their son or daughter starts climbing out of his/her crib. While it’s easier to control what a toddler gets into from a crib, your child could get hurt by falling when climbing out of his/her crib, so the actions of escape artistry are good signs to make the switch. With a toddler bed, you will still need to be concerned about safety. Keep up your precautions against suffocation. Put toddler rails on the sides of the bed so your child doesn’t fall out. And be sure to childproof the room so your toddler can be safe at any hour.

Childproof Their Room

You may worry about your toddler getting into trouble while they’re alone in their room, and these fears can be well-founded. When your child can get out if his/her crib at will, things that posed no threat because they were far from the crib are suddenly hazards you need to deal with.

One of your top priorities needs to be the safety of the furniture in your child’s room. Every year many toddlers are injured from pulling furniture over on top of themselves, and too many of these preventable accidents are fatal. Check whether each piece of furniture can bear the full weight of your toddler if he/ she were to climb on it. Play it safe by anchoring furniture to the wall with specially-designed straps. And clear anything that would fall if pulled or shaken. Also consider covering the sides of sharp edges and corners on furniture that could cause serious damage if your child fell onto them.

Use a hand sander to smooth the corner edges of walls. Check for other sharp corners that need to be smoothed as it can prevent a serious bruise on their head if they directly hit the wall corner. If your hand sander is not working, you can find the right parts to repair it here.

Turn a keen eye to anything else in the room that could be a hazard. This includes electrical outlets. At minimum protect your child against electrical shock by using outlet plugs. These may not be enough, though, if your child can mimic you and knows how to take them out. Consider investing in special outlet covers for top safety. Also, you may want to cover up any exposed cords if your child is likely to pull them out. And finally, think of whether any toys are too dangerous to allow easy access to (again, ones with strings may be big concerns), and put these where your child can only play them with under supervision.

You may feel like your childproofing is a little excessive, but you can never be too safe when protecting your kids. It only takes one curious night for your child to get seriously injured, so prevent dangers before you are forced to respond to them.

Monitor Your Child

This one may go without saying, but many parents may need the reminder. You may have been okay letting your child play safely in their crib, but a child can get into a lot more trouble with a whole room to explore. You can use a video monitor to keep an eye on your son/daughter, and check on them frequently if you know they’re awake. Be ready to intervene as the need arises.

No parent can stop worrying completely about their toddler being safe at night. But following these tips will help you minimize threats and hazards and give you peace of mind that your child is safe in his or her room at any time of day or night.

How Not to Sabotage Your Sleep Training Efforts

child sleeping peacefully in a single/twin bed with bright blue bedrails on both sides
shows white panel bedroom suite with stripped red bed covers and a teddy bear, plus matching trundle bed
A bed that your child will be comfortable moving to, but that will last many years and be comfortable for you to sit or lie on too, is a great choice, when it's time for your child to move to a room of her own.

When it comes to sleeping arrangement for an infant or a toddler, there are generally two camps: those who prefer to have their baby sleep in the crib or a cradle and those who opt to have a superkingsize mattress for a family bed. Both sides have good reasons for deciding one way or another– convenience, safety, closer bonding, etc. And yet, there comes a time when every parent gets to ask: when does a baby sleep in a youth bed?

Parenting authorities and publications may have various opinions on this, but the bottomline is that each family is different. For instance, some may decide to move the baby to his or her own bed right after weaning from breastfeeding. Others may wait until the child has become agile enough to be able to get in and out of bed on his own. Still others may decide to just preserve the status quo until the child simply grows too big to sleep with the parents, or when another sibling is in the way.

Note that there are certain cultures in which co-sleeping is the norm rather than the exception.

There are various means to success when training your child to sleep on his or her own bed. Much like other milestones such as toilet training, walking or talking, children reach the right level of readiness at different times. Be prepared to be very patient and understanding during the process; some firmness is of course essential, but never be punitive or belittling.

We compiled some tips from veteran parents who have (give or take a learning experience or two) successfully navigated the pitfalls of sleep training:

child sleeping peacefully in a single/twin bed with bright blue bedrails on both sides
Bed rails can help keep your child safe when he first moves to his own bed (and also provide something for you to lean against if you're lying in their with him sometimes!)
  • Prepare your child for the eventuality of sleeping alone on his or her own bed way ahead of time. If time allows, do this months in advance, so that your child understands that it is a necessary and inevitable process rather than something you just arbitrarily decided. You can even make it an exciting event by picking out a new bed and then saving up for it together – carefully timing it so that you just happen to have enough when you think he or she is ready to start sleeping solo.
  • If you are not getting a new bed, you can do the same process with the bed linens, the pillows, or a cool night light, really just about anything that makes it more of an accomplishment. That way, your child will see the event as a challenge rather than something to be dreaded.
  • Once your child has started to sleep in his or her own bed, discourage regression. For instance, if your child is sick and needs extra cuddling and attention during the night, sleep in your child’s bed rather than letting him or her back in your marital bed. Doing the latter will just make it harder and more confusing. This is one good reason to opt for a full-size double mattress and bed frame if your child’s bedroom can accommodate it, rather than an easily-outgrown cot.

 

5 Bedroom and Closet Organization Tips For Mom

1 white Sliding Wire Basket mounted on the wall
1 white Sliding Wire Basket mounted on the wall
Rubbermaid Configurations Sliding Wire Basket

We all know closets are the nemesis in any home. We try to keep them clean and tidy but after a while we get lazy and procrastination sets in. Well when it comes to our children the same issues apply but if you can get a method going early when they are first born then you have a real chance of keeping clutter at bay. Here are some closet organization ideas to help keep your child organized.

 

  1. Every six months or so, take everything out of your children’s closet and decide which items can stay and which should go. You can donate the outgrown items to other people who will still need the.. Chances are you have a family member or friend who could use the hand me downs, and if not, send them to a charity shop.
  2. Reserve the top shelf for your children’s out of season clothing items. Get plastic containers or storage cubes and label them by season. So when it’s spring, keep your winter clothes out of the closet and into the plastic container, and vice versa. That way there is still more closet space for your child to utilize.
  3. Have a hamper basket to place your child’s dirty laundry. So that early on, they can learn the value of closet organizing their clean clothes from their dirty ones.
  4. Hooks are especially important, so be sure there must be at least 3 or 4 of them in their room. It’s a great way to place their coats, hats and sports equipment. Just be sure it’s placed in a height where your child can reach it. This gets them involved in the care of their clothes in a way they can easily manage.
  5. For older children (say 3 and up), a wire closet storage system can be a good choice, allowing them to easily see what’s in each drawer.  This increases the chances of them putting their clothes away in the right drawer, and also makes it easy for you to see at a glance what they have clean. You can even reserve one drawer for clothes that are clean enough to be worn again, so they are not shut in a stuffy drawer getting smelly, but are also not lying around the room.

These childrens closet organization tips are an excellent way to get your baby’s and children’s rooms in order. If closet organization is not a part of your home cleaning regiment then you need to get started implementing them in all of your home closets.

Decorating a Nursery with an Art Poster for Every Character You Love

Two piece wall art, 5 giraffes
Cotton Tale Designs 2 Piece Play Date Wall Art

When you have a baby on the way, your attention will be focused on designing your baby’s nursery. There are mothers who would prefer to design their baby’s room with the traditional pink if it’s a girl and blue if it’s a boy. While others, prefer to have a room that is designed for both a girl and a boy. That is not a bad idea and it can help your growing baby adjust to the variety of colors displayed in the room as well as its contents. Perhaps you are on a budget, since you are saving for the medical expenses and baby needs once your baby is born, so choosing an affordable style for the room is a practical thing to do. You can have the walls painted in one pastel color and have an art poster for every cartoon character you would love to introduce to your baby.

The cartoon character portrayed in an art poster could be Garfield, Mickey Mouse, Donald Duck or even Pink Panther. Their 1 to 2 featured colors are great for a baby’s developing eyes and brain. Better yet you can use posters of unknown characters or orginal designs that have strong contrasts to help your baby’s developing eye sight. As they grow up they will be curious and fascinated wanting to watch, draw and hear stories about these characters.

Art 4 Kids "Silly Jungle Animals" Mounted Art Print
Art 4 Kids "Silly Jungle Animals" Mounted Art Print , 30"x17"

Choosing characters that they don’t have ready access to on television or through books is a good way to encourage your angel to be artistic and imaginative, creating stories of their own.It will also allow you to make up stories to entertain your little ones without the bias of ready made characters. Just make sure that these posters are hung by poster frames that will help preserve and maintain the condition of the posters from tearing, sagging and stains, dust and mold. The frames will also add style and depth into the nursery with your chosen frame designs.

Creating a nursery does not have to be expensive as an art poster as well as poster frames are very affordable. Remember, designing a nursery does not have to be expensive, but it should be beneficial.

Guest Post: Furniture and Toy storage solutions for kids

toys storage bins on 4 tilted shelves, in bright primary coloursMy nephew had turned two and his parents finally decided to give his room a make over. We looked through lots of life style magazines, home interior décor books and so on. It was overwhelming to see the range of furniture available for kids.

We decided to first pick a theme for his room. Considering that he is a huge fan of spider man, we decided to go with spider man as a theme for his room. We picked up a spider man bunker bed, a small study table, a wardrobe which again had spider man all over it.

We purchased the furniture from a store near by and began decorating his room. While decorating his room we realized that his toys didn’t have a place to be kept in.

We began looking for toy storage solutions. We decided to focus on storage solutions which would be easy to use for him. A couple of things had to be kept in mind before picking up a toy storage unit.

The toys should be placed in a manner that they are not cluttered so shelves or drawers would be a good option. It would be nice if the toys could be visible from outside so transparent drawers would definitely help. The shelves/drawers must be located such in easy reach for my nephew.

We also considered buying him a toy cart which could be used to stack all the toys and then placed at a corner in the room. This cart could also be used to take all the toys to a different location like the living room or the back yard if required.

Another cheap alternative and the best toy storage solutions we found were boxes of different sizes which could be placed below the bed or kept in the corner of the room.

Since we were watching our budget and had already crossed it over by a considerable margin we decided to pick up the boxes …And finally there was a new room which my nephew looked at and said ‘It’s perfect, I love it.’

In Brief: New Safety Standards for Toddler Beds in the US

A new safety standard for toddler beds has been approved in the United States by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission this week. The new standard builds on existing ASTM voluntary standard for toddler beds (F1821-09) adding extra protections to prevent injuries.

The new standards include requirements that

  • The upper edge of the guardrail must be at least five inches above the toddler bed’s mattress.
  • Spindle/slat strength testing for toddler beds must be consistent with the testing required for crib spindles/slats.
  • Separate warning labels to address entrapment and strangulation hazards must appear on toddler beds.

Naturally, these standards will also apply to baby cribs which convert to toddler beds.

For more information see the CPSC’s press release.

Baby Cribs Should Be Chosen With Safety in Mind

Dream On Me 4 in 1 Aden Convertible Mini CribMost families are very excited when a new baby is on the way. Getting the nursery ready and buying all of the things that will keep baby safe and comfortable are part of making the house ready.

This has been discussed in other articles here, but it cannot be emphasised too much: when purchasing baby cribs and other baby furniture, it is important to think about safety first.

The crib is where newborn babies and infants spend most of their sleeping time. Cribs should be chosen for their safety features rather than just their beauty. Heirloom cribs might not meet current safety standards designed to keep babies safe.

Baby Cribs should be sturdy, with sides that will not fall down when an older infant or toddler begins to pull up. The mattress should fit snugly to the sides of the crib to prevent a baby from becoming entrapped between the sides of the crib and the mattress.

One of the most important safety characteristics of baby cribs is the distance between the slats. There should be no more than 2 3/8 inches between the slats. This keeps a baby’s head from becoming entrapped between the slats. Corner posts should be no more than 1/16 inch tall to prevent a baby’s clothing from getting hung on the posts. There should be decorative cutouts that would allow entrapment.

Due to the importance of having a safe crib, it is important to purchase baby cribs and other baby furniture from stores that sell the safest products. Well meaning friends and family might have used or hand-me-down heirloom baby cribs that they would like to share, but some of these might be unsafe. The same goes for used baby cribs purchased at yard sales or used furniture stores. When this type of crib is purchased, it should meet the highest safety standards.

It may cost a little more to buy a crib that meets today’s safety standards, but keeping baby in a safe environment is priceless!

Purchasing a New Crib

So you are wondering how you should go about purchasing a new crib. There are so many options out there, where is the best place to start? In the following article I will be giving you a few pointers to help you when trying to answer this question.

I for one am all for internet shopping. It just makes life so much easier and you can have all the best deals at just a few keystrokes distance. Some people don’t like shopping online because they are afraid that it might be unsafe and somebody could steal their information and, worst case scenario, steal their identity. My question to though is; isn’t it just as risky to give the waiter you credit card to pay? He’ll disappear for ten or fifteen minutes which is more than enough time to take a couple digital pictures of you card.

I am not saying this to make you stop paying by credit card when you go out to eat; I’m just trying to make a point. There are risks everywhere in life and I don’t think that we should let them dictate how to live or how to shop for that matter. I would take all necessary precautions of course and not give you credit card information to any iffy looking sites, but there are very trusted sites out there such as Amazon or Ebay. My point is I think the internet is a very viable option for shopping for new baby cribs.

You can also go the old fashioned way and go to the local baby store to buy a crib. This can rather limit your options to what they have in stock but you do have the advantage of seeing the crib ‘in the flesh’ which can give you a much better idea of whether or not you like it. You can also flood the salesperson with questions about the crib and get an instant response which is nice. You can also talk to them about crib safety, and you might spot your ideal baby blanket in the store too.

In conclusion I would say that shopping on the internet has a lot of advantages whereas shopping in a store kind of limits your options. I won’t tell you which is better as both have their times. I will say however that whether you are shopping in a store or on the internet be sure to do your research so that you can be assured that the crib that you choose is safe and secure for your baby.

Baby Crib Safety Tips

We have talked about different kinds of baby cribs, but what matters as well is crib safety which is usually taken for granted. In this article, we will talk about crib safety. For first-time parents, they are usually very particular with detail as well as new information about the welfare of their newborn. Being knowledgeable about safety is always the best for your baby.

Your old crib might still be okay but remember that if it is not new, there might be materials that are already lacking from that crib and so would be dangerous for your baby. That is why new purchase should always be considered. If you are going to purchase a second hand crib, make sure you are aware of the current safety standards in your country and that the crib meets them.

Decorative materials are not essential in buying your crib. Ribbons may look good along with the crib but your baby might pull it up and tangle it with himself so you better think twice.

Also take note of the slats in your crib. Slats that are too far apart are dangerous because a baby may get head, arms or legs trapped between them. In Australia, for instance, the standard is between 50mm and 95mm gaps. In the US it is no wider than 2 3/8 inches. Make sure your crib mattress fits closely into the crib, so your baby can not squeeze between the mattress and the side of the crib. Also, expecially with an older crib if it is painted you should check out that they used non-toxic paint. Remember that common respiratory infections are acquired through inhalation and most babies spends a lot of their time in their crib.

If you want to complete your crib then you need to purchase a mattress as well. For mattress reviews, you may visit: http://cribmattressratings.org. You can find there a lot of useful info about baby mattresses, including product reviews. You will also want to find the best baby bedding and your ideal baby blanket.

For further information about crib safety standards and relevant links see wikipedia.

Choosing Baby Cribs

Buying a baby crib is part of preparing for a new baby. Choosing the right cribs, bassinettes and moses baskets are important since the baby will spend quite a lot of time sleeping in them in the first few months. The practice of swaddling newborns means that most babies will be quite comfortable in a small crib or bassinette for the first three to six months of life, but after that a full size baby crib will be necessary.

As with all kids bedroom furniture, it is most important that the crib is safe and comfortable, but you may also want to choose one that fits the style of your nursery. There are many different types of baby cribs that you can select from:

The Standard Crib – This is the typical baby crib with just the frame, mattress and baby bedding.

The Canopy Crib – These come in rectangular or round shapes. They have a canopy to cover the baby when he/she is asleep. The baby bedding for a canopy crib include the canopy itself and can be pricey.

The Round Crib – These cribs come in a round shape. This makes them convenient since you can place them in a corner of the room and still have easy access to the baby, from either side.

The Convertible Crib – This is the most cost efficient crib today. It has the ability to convert into a toddler bed as the baby grows up, and some can also convert into a full sized bed that your child can use from teenage years into adulthood. This will save you the cost of buying a new bed once the baby outgrows the crib and becomes a toddler. It also means that you do not have to buy a bed as the child continues to grow. Of course they can be expensive; but then you will never have to pay for a new bed again.

The Portable Crib – These are the smallest types of baby cribs. If you have a small nursery then this may be your crib of choice. They are also low priced hence they will fit into any budget. Portable cribs, like the name suggests, are light in weight and fold up, and therefore ideal for travel. The downside is that you will have to find a new crib or bed in the short term because the baby will outgrow the portable crib more quickly than a full size crib.

Selecting baby cribs can be confusing. You want to give your baby the best that you can, and consider crib safety. You also have to consider your budget for the crib as you consider the budget for buying all the other items that a child will need when it comes into the world, from a baby blanket (or several) to baby sleepsuits and other clothes. You will also need to look at the size of the nursery. Once you know the size of the nursery and the budget that you can afford, then you will be prepared to go out a find a fantastic crib for your little bundle of joy.