Friday, April 6, 2012

Favorite Baby Books

Yesterday I woke up to strong contractions early in the morning and thought Molly might be on her way!  I was feeling ready and thought it would be the perfect day for her arrival.  I was also pumped that my labor was starting in the morning rather than at night because we did the nighttime thing last delivery and didn't sleep a wink for about 2 days straight.  (Miserable way to start the newborn stage).  Anyway, obviously Molly didn't arrive and a little part of me was disappointed, but Matt and Reed and I ended up having a perfect day just the three of us!  Matt stayed home since the students are on spring break and there are no youth activities this week, and we played and laughed and enjoyed each other.  We rounded out the evening playing in the yard and introduced Reed to the fire pit and "marshmallow sandwiches" for dessert. :)

We've made some major progress on all things pre-baby checklist and are about as ready as we're going to get around here.  While we're patiently waiting for Molly, I have been trying to rest a little each day, so I've been putting my feet up during R's nap and revisiting some of my baby books.  When I was pregnant with Reed, this was my reading load, plus some!

This time around, (you know how it goes), has been very different.  I haven't read anything, I have no idea of my prenatal appointment stats, and only about 3 pictures of my growing baby belly (as opposed to the hundreds with Reed).  I have 4 favorite books that I am skimming/brushing up on.  In case you are in the market for baby prep reading, these are my 4 favorites and a brief description of what I used from each:

What to Expect the First Year
When Reed was a baby, I paged along with this book each month as he grew and changed.  Nothing spectacular, but a usable Q&A format with a lot of broad information.  I will probably only pull this one out if there is something specific I want to look up, but I did use it with Reed so wanted to include it in my book list. :)

Baby Wise
I don't even own this book, so I still need to borrow someone else's and reread, but off the top of my head these are the simple main concepts I liked and implemented the first time around:
For nursing: On demand for first 2 weeks (probably every 2 to 3 hours), focusing on full meals at each feeding (as opposed to "snacking"), and moving toward an eat-wake-sleep schedule-- instead of eat-sleep-wake.

Happiest Baby on the Block
This book basically looks at the first 3 months of infancy as a "fourth trimester" in which you try recreate the comforts of the womb for your baby.  The only thing we used, and the main point of the book, is the "5 S's," the keys to soothing and calming an infant-- swaddle, suck, swing, shhh(sound), and stomach.  This book would be especially useful is you have a colicky or extra fussy baby.  You can even jump to the fold out cheat sheet in the middle of the book- that is all I brushed up on this go round.  (Disclaimer: Although we found the 5 s's useful, I don't endorse the author's evolutionary theory behind the "4th trimester"). :)

The Moms on Call Guide to Basic Baby Care
This is my favorite baby book by far!  It was given to me by one of its co-author's, Laura Hunter, and I used it as my go to what am I doing source!  The book covers everything from basic infant care to common sicknesses to introducing solid food, including (my favorite) the MOC sleep method!  I also relied a lot on the sample schedules in the book as I tried to navigate what worked for Reed and me.  The format is incredibly usable, almost like an outline, and the information is thorough and straightforward.  I also have the Moms on Call Swaddle Blanket.

Hope I remember what to do with a baby!! :)  As long as Molly is still comfy in there, I am going to (finally!) try to return to my long lost toddler reading list too.  I will keep you posted with book reports. :)

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