Bringing Up Baby

Ashley

Ever notice how much information there is out there on what's best for your baby? Trying to sort through it all might leave you feeling overwhelmed and frustrated to say the least. This show is dedicated to helping you clear out the noise so you can figure out what is best for YOUR baby and YOUR family.We are here to share information and give practical tips to help you get through baby’s first year and beyond. If you’re looking to learn more about your baby, gain more confidence in your parenting, and get as much sleep as you can through it all, you’ve come to the right place.

Supporting the Big Kids with Caron Irwin
Feb 20 2022
Supporting the Big Kids with Caron Irwin
Our little show here has been around for one whole trip around the sun, which means that some of your babies aren’t just little babies anymore!Some of you might be expecting baby #2 or #3 and some of you are new here, either getting ready to have your baby or they’re already here but still nice and fresh ;) No matter your situation, this episode is one for the books. Because we’re actually getting into some really helpful strategies for supporting the bigger kids - the older siblings or other toddlers/preschoolers that your little ones will be eventually.And to help us navigate this journey, I’ve enlisted the help of Caron Irwin, owner of Roo Family in Toronto, Canada. Caron and I had a chat the other day about how to help your toddler or preschooler navigate big changes, like when a new baby brother or sister is expected.We also had a chat about how to help them transition from one activity to the next - especially when the next activity isn’t necessarily something they want to do, but have to do! You know what I mean? Lastly, we got into a really common situation or phase that almost all kids tend to go through at some point that I bet you’ve all gone through or are about to at some point… when your child seems to “prefer” one parent over the other… This is some very developmentally appropriate behaviour in most cases but it can be frustrating or tough to navigate. Luckily Caron’s going to walk us through it… Questions I had for Caron:What can parents do to prevent or work through a sibling's potentially big feeling when Baby comes along?How can parents navigate when the sibling/child prefers one parent over the other? For instance, if one parent is primarily taking care of Baby/newborn so the other parent is up for putting the older sibling to bed, but the older sibling is not down for this. One of my favourite posts of yours - you talked about the 3 C's for helping your child transition from one thing to the next. This is a big one because how many times are parents going to be trying to get baby ready and out of the house, but now we’re working with a toddler’s struggle with going from one thing to the next. Can you share these with us and how we can make them work in our homes?Caron Irwin with Roo FamilyWebsiteInstagramAshley Cooley with Birth Baby SleepWebsiteInstagramFacebookJoin Us!Halifax Perinatal Support Network HEREBringing Up Baby Community Membership! More info HERE
Anniversary Episode + Special Announcement
Feb 15 2022
Anniversary Episode + Special Announcement
A bonus episode for you today for a couple really quick, but really important things.First - We’re 1 Year Old!! Happy 1st Birthday to the Bringing Up Baby podcast. We officially launched our first episode on February 13th last year and while I had no idea what I was really getting into but we’re still here and still going strong with many amazing episodes still to come.Throughout this past year, Bringing Up Baby has been providing you with evidence-based information to help you learn more about your baby, gain more confidence in your parenting, and get as much sleep as you can through it all. But we can’t stop there. There’s something missing.Community.We need to go out and find those people that are going to help us navigate this parenting journey. We’ve always heard that it takes a village to raise a child - but they aren’t just going to show up at your door unannounced. But where is one to start? Well, here’s one place:Introducing the Bringing Up Baby COMMUNITY - an extremely valuable membership group to take this all to the next level. This is where SUPPORT gets a front seat. This is where you’ll find your people. By joining this exclusive membership group, you’ll have access to:A virtual community within our membership portal and private Facebook group.Weekly, LIVE, virtual education sessions with Q&AWe’ll even do some Q&A’s off the topics discussed in this podcast as new episodes drop - so you can get even more specifics on a particular topicA growing resource page with educational and how-to videos, recordings of live sessions and helpful PDFs like my New Baby Sleep Guide! Yes, it’s yours for Free when you join our membership :) Now, we are doing things a little differently than you might expect to kick-start this new program… so, let me explain… We’re doing a bit of a “soft launch” that’s going to run from March 1st to June 30th of this year. We won’t be totally shutting down for the summer months, but there will be more of an OFFICIAL launch come September 2022. But get this - you can join as early as TODAY because we’re allowing for EARLY ACCESS!! This is going to allow you to jump in right away, access our Facebook group and preliminary resources and you’ll also be able to help inform what topics we dive into! That’s right - you have an opportunity to help to inform the content of our membership so we can tailor it exactly to your needs. This introductory offer won’t last forever! So head on over to www.birthbabysleep.ca and follow the links to our community membership I’m so pumped! This is going to be such a great way to keep the conversations going and to really get a sense of what community is when you’re a young, growing family.See you there!
Planning for Postpartum with Embrace Doula
Jan 25 2022
Planning for Postpartum with Embrace Doula
Welcome back to the Bringing Up Baby podcast. We’ve got another episode for you today focusing on Your Postpartum Self. Because once again, if we want to really show our little ones how to be, it’s to always remember to look after ourselves and show them what it means to actually do that! We have to be at or near the top of the list but as new parents or parents of young ones, I know that you know that we often forget about this. We have to put our own mask on first, before we can even begin to help, connect or grow with another person. So for today’s show, I’m going to share a conversation I had with Amy MacAulay. Amy is the owner of Embrace Doula Services in Halifax, Nova Scotia. And she and her team are actually among a myriad of Postpartum Doulas in our communities and they are truly an invaluable resource. In this show, Amy’s going to share how to really prepare for what’s to come after baby arrives and where you may need some extra help. We get into when the right time is for visitors vs. helpers, and what specific tasks are actually helpful for others to do for you because trust us, the helpers really want to help! → How to handle unsolicited or unhelpful suggestions from loved ones:Communication (Who & How)Create boundariesLeave out reading material (Loving Care books)Blame your doula/prenatal educator/consultantBirth Baby Sleep: website... facebook... instagramEmbrace Doula website:  Instagram and Facebook: @embrace_doulaNova Scotia Doula’s Association:
Swaddling 101
Dec 9 2021
Swaddling 101
Swaddling infants has been happening for centuries but there has been a growing controversy about its safety.It’s not that it’s illegal or that it’s one of those things that’s NOT recommended, but it does pose some risks. And we are going to talk about those risks but more importantly, how to MINIMIZE risk - because the last thing anyone needs is to feel guilty for doing something that might be extremely helpful for their baby and how they choose to parent. I am going to tell you what the research tells us - what the evidence is when it comes to swaddling and what you should keep in mind should you choose to swaddle. The rest is up to you and I hope this conversation helps! What is swaddling?As mentioned, swaddling has been a long-standing, traditional practice of wrapping a baby up gently in a light blanket. Seems simple enough, but swaddling doesn’t come without its challenges.How does it work to calm babies and what is the best way to swaddle?So swaddling really is a tried and true way of calming babies because it helps re-create that womb-like situation which has shown to be very comforting for them. And Yes, swaddling is safe when implemented correctly. While swaddling for short periods is generally fine (meaning baby isn’t kept in a swaddle all day long), you might want to consider a swaddling sleep sack - which is basically a pre-wrapped blanket that might have velcros or something that keeps it together. This can actually really help if you find your baby loves a swaddle but breaks free from it easily. But regardless if you’re using a blanket to branded swaddle, definitely be sure to at least keep it loose around their hips. Swaddling too tightly here and when legs can barely move can actually lead to developmental dysplasia of the hip.  The other big risk associated with swaddling infants is overheating, which increases the risk of SIDS. All of these recommendations come from the most up-to-date research, with which Health Canada obviously supports. They actually even add that you’ll also might want to consider having their hands free or at least near their face so they can show you hunger cues. When should you stop swaddling?Around 3 months of age or when baby starts rolling, whichever comes first. How do you transition them out of a swaddle?One arm out at a time. Both arms out but wrapped with the swaddle with a bit of “gentle pressure” around the abdomen.Use what’s called a “transitional swaddle” of which there are several that are almost part swaddle, part not. For example, the Zipadee Zip which kind of makes your baby look like a starfish and the Merlin Magic Sleep Suit which actually has a bit of weight to it but can help baby manage that “startle reflex” when being placed on their back.Cold turkey. Switch to a sleep sack/bag or maybe add a layer under their sleeper and call it a night!Summary of how to best minimize any risk associated with swaddling:Swaddle securely to minimize risk of unwrappingNot too tightly around the hips, legs still able to move freelyAvoid overheatingAlways place babies on their back to sleepAnd discontinue swaddling when infants show signs of rolling over or by about 3 months of age, whichever comes first.
Early Morning Wake-Ups
Nov 16 2021
Early Morning Wake-Ups
It’s almost a right of passage… At some point (or at many points), babies will wake up earlier than most of us would like.But wanting your baby to “sleep in” is not at all selfish. Well, maybe it is a little bit, but you’re allowed to want and need good sleep too! Because you do!Keeping in mind that each baby has their own thing going on and waking up really early isn’t really that uncommon or unrealistic. But, if there is anything you can do to help improve or lengthen their sleep and you want to explore those options, that’s what we’re here to talk about today ;) Now, as always, I need to say that this conversation does not apply to newborns or infants under 4 months of age (adjusted if they were born before their due date). These babies can wake up any time they want and it’s all normal. They probably need to be fed, so just keep on trucking and later morning wake-ups will be coming soon!Why you want them to wake at a more reasonable hour:And by the way, when I say “reasonable hour” I mean, let’s get them sleeping until AT LEAST 6am. A wake-up time between about 6-7:30am is generally what works and what most babies/families strive for. If not later, later is fine too. But this is what tends to fall more in line with their natural circadian rhythms and it’s pretty important to help them preserve it, and here’s why:It helps ensure they’re getting enough sleep overnight.It also helps with the QUALITY of their sleep.It helps them with their naps during the day.It helps the WHOLE FAMILY get some much needed rest. Why they are waking early and how to help change that:-->They’re Overtired. Staying awake too late/long between naps and bedtime. THE SOLUTION: Make sure your baby isn’t staying awake longer than what’s appropriate for them for their age and stage, including naps and bedtime. Making sure your baby isn’t too overtired can help them fall asleep easier, stay asleep longer for better quality sleep, and sleep in a bit later into the morning. -->On the other end of this, another reason why your baby could be waking up too early is because they’ve already gotten enough sleep! They’ve reached their quota of maximum amount of sleep that they need for the day and just can’t sleep any more. THE SOLUTION to this problem could be either to start limiting their daytime sleep, possibly pushing their bedtime a bit later OR maybe shifting their entire schedule ahead.-->Hormones. Our bodies actually produce hormones.. Hello cortisol! Yes, I’m talking about that stress hormone again but it isn’t all bad! It actually starts to accumulate in our bodies (and your baby’s too!) a few hours before we’re meant to wake up and this is actually why we wake up in the morning. THE SOLUTION to this problem is to either alter their sleep schedule, for instance helping them to rearrange when/how long they’re sleeping, OR to implement sleep-training techniques to help them with getting back to sleep upon waking too early. Mental Health MinuteI’d like to take a minute to talk about your mental state when YOU don’t get enough sleep, because with less sleep makes it a lot tougher to be our best selves. We have a ways to go everybody and I want to help you through it. So all this to say, and trying to bring it back to this episode on babies who wake up really early.. Is that YOUR MENTAL HEALTH MATTERS.  YOUR SLEEP MATTERS TOO.Halifax Perinatal Support Network Facebook Group - HEREBirth Baby Sleep Education and Support Services - HERE