Real Advice For Real Life

Parenting Expert Advice from Author and America’s Nanny,

Michelle LaRowe

older sibling and babyFamily Additions – Preparing Kids for Siblings

Preparing the soon to be siblings for the arrival of a new baby can seem like a daunting task, but getting them to be involved from an early start will help promote positive feelings towards the new arrival and ease the transition into big sister or brotherhood

Simple things such as talking openly about the upcoming birth of the baby, reading books about babies, making gifts for the new sister or brother, picking out nursery accessories or toys, and helping to choose names are all ways that your children can feel involved and play a part in welcoming your new addition.

Showing your children pictures of your pregnancy with them can also help head off feelings of jealousy and insecurity.

Talking about the ways you took care of them when they were tiny babies and looking at videos and pictures of you feeding, bathing or changing them, will provide your singletons with insight into the demands of caring for a new baby in ways that they can understand.

Solidifying a daily routine that includes alone time with each child well before the delivery of your baby will help make the transition to new siblinghood less chaotic.

Their world will be turned upside down, so having as many unchanging aspects in their day to day routine will help to keep things from turning chaotic.

Having set meal times, nap times, bath times and bedtimes will give them concrete check points throughout the day when they will know that to expect – even when nothing around them is going as expected.Your children may also need extra reassurance that they are still special to you.

Even if it’s reading a short story, giving them a bath or sharing a special good night moment, be sure to incorporate a few minutes of one on one time with each child.Let Big Brother and Big sister come first – sometimes.

After the birth of your baby, your oldest are going to be audience to an ongoing chorus of “Wait a minute.” When Big Sister is asking for a cup of water, she’ll feel quite special if she hears mom tell screaming baby that “They’ll have to wait a minute while mom gets big sister some water.”

Your older kids understand that their needs are getting constantly bumped to the back of the line so every so often be sure to meet their needs first – when the safety of your baby isn’t an issue.

Having your older children help out with the baby can make them feel like they play an important part in brining up baby.

Even a two year old can bring you a diaper and surprisingly hold up a bottle. Providing ways for them to be the Big Brother or Sister will help them see all the things that make being a Big Kid special. Ease up on your expectations. A good day will no longer mean that your kids had a wonderful trip to the zoo, followed by a three hour nap and a healthy homemade dinner. It will now mean everyone is alive and accounted for.

You will have one priority –safety. Everything else can be considered secondary.

Take practical steps to make managing home life easier.

  • Buying only white socks, undergarments, sheets, bibs, towels and face clothes (easy to bleach!),
  • having extra clothes and laundry baskets on each floor,
  • having changing stations in both the nursery and on the main floor (a basket to hold diapers & wipes and a towel to lie babies on will work great!),
  • creating cabinet space dedicated to baby foods and formula (and a drawer for kids utensils),
  • and having a safe place that you can put the baby (a bouncy seat or a pack and play) on each level of your house

This will make meeting the needs of your family a little bit easer- and with a new infant and more- every little bit counts.

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Michelle La Rowe

Michelle La Rowe

About America's Nanny:

Michelle is an active member of the nanny community. She is the founder and president of Boston Area Nannies, Inc., a local non-profit educational organization and has served on the International Nanny Association Board of Directors.

She is called on by the media as a nanny and parenting expert and has been affectionately dubbed America's Nanny. Michelle has appeared on television and has been featured in print.

Podcast of Interview with
America's Nanny

Books by Michelle LaRowe

A Mom's Ultimate Book of Lists: 100+ Lists to Save You Time, Money and Sanity - Grocery lists. Checklists. To-do lists. Lots of people love--and live by--lists. And parents are no exception. Today's families are busier than ever, and moms don't have the time or energy to search and scramble for the parenting information they are desperately seeking. This handy, practical reference guide will save time, money, and sanity for today's busy women.

Working Mom's 411 is your one-stop resource guide for navigating through the often choppy waters of managing kids, career and home.

Nanny to the Rescue - America's nanny offers a large dose of healthy parenting advice with secrets for raising happy, secure, and well-balanced babies and toddlers.

Nanny To the Rescue Again - Faced with multiple choices regarding school, friends, and activities coupled with the ever-widening influence of the outside world, parents of 6-12-year-olds need help. America's nanny is back to offer a large dose of healthy parenting advice with secrets for raising happy, secure, and well-balanced children.
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Michelle La Rowe La RoweAmerican NannyParentingReal Advice For Real LifeParenting Expert Advice from Author and America's Nanny, Michelle LaRoweFamily Additions - Preparing Kids for Siblings Preparing the soon to be siblings for the arrival of a new baby can seem like a daunting task, but getting them to be involved from an early start will help...Parenting Advice| Family Fun Activities for Kids