Archive for the ‘First Trimester’ Category

Books for Babies

I’m sure it comes as no surprise to those that know about my obsession with books that I’ve already started an Amazon wishlist for the baby.  It’s never too early to start reading to your child!

I must agree with the Beginning With Books Center for Early Literacy’s recommendations on the year’s best books for babies.  Many of their suggestions encourage reader/listener interaction, whether it is wiggling toes or repeating simple sounds.  This is great for teaching social skills, and it helps your baby associate books with fun.  Keep in mind that most infants have attention spans of about 3 minutes, so a number of short readings a day (to add up to at least 30 minutes) is better than forcing your child to sit still and listen for long periods of time.

Check out these great books:

Mama’s Day by Laura Ashman
Whose Toes Are Those? by Jabari Asim
Easy Street by Rita Gray
Welcome Precious by Nikki Grimes
Look at You by Howard Henderson
Look at the Animals by Peter Linenthal
Wee Willie Winkie by Salley Mavor
Hush Little Baby by J. Brian Pinkney
Cheep! Cheep! by Julie Steigemeyer
Babycakes by Karma Wilson

My personal favorite baby books are Leslie Patricelli’s opposite books.  The colorful illustrations on bright backgrounds are perfect for getting the attention of your young readers, and the simplicity of the text is great for their short attention spans.  And I’m especially excited to introduce the baby to classics from Dr. Seuss, Eric Carle, and others.

Feel free to recommend some of your favorites!  You can always email me at decemberbabyblog at gmail dot com.

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The Name Question….

How do you choose the perfect name for your baby? 

I’ve always been interested in names in general and looked at baby name books out of curiosity, but it’s a whole different thing looking for names to use for my child.


The most helpful book by far in this oh-so-big decision has been The Baby Name Wizard by Laura Wattenberg.  This book is a great resource for the parents-to-be who have a few names that they like and want to see what else they like.  Each name includes similar names for both boys and girls, so if you like the name “Jeremy” for a boy but you need a girl’s name, this is the book for you.

Have fun with Baby Name Wizard online at Nymbler.com!

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Baby Afghans


blueafghan.jpgAmong the gifts my mom brought last weekend were several of her handmade baby afghans, which are pictured here.  I apologize for the poor quality of the photos.  My photography skills leave something to be desired.  Nevertheless, the afghans are absolutely lovely.  My mom has been crocheting for years now, and she does beautiful work.  Thanks, Mom!

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I’m not sure how it came up, but this past weekend, my family ended up discussing the traditions surrounding the placenta.  Many cultures around the world have rituals involving the placenta or umbilical cord.  In Turkey, some Muslims bury the cord in the courtyard of a mosque to ensure that their child is devout throughout their life.  In Cambodian tradition, burying the placenta is thought to ensure good health to the new mother.  The Maori of New Zealand bury the placenta to symbolize a connection between the child and the earth.

And yes, people in some cultures eat the placenta.  Some cultures believe that the placenta contains valuable nutrients for the mother.  Others put a more mystical bent on it, thinking that the placenta contains magic that they can harness by ingesting it.  While I don’t personally believe in any of these traditions, I can respect the people and the cultures that do. 

And they may not be far off in the idea that the placenta contains nourishing properties.  The U.S. cosmetics industry certainly thinks so as they include human and animal placenta in various hair and skin products.  You might be taking placenta into your body without even realizing it.  That’s rather disturbing if you think about it.

Check out this article from Mothering magazine on Placenta Rituals for more info. 

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Week 13

peach1.jpgToday baby is about the size of a peach. Baby likely weighs about an ounce at this point.  Baby’s essential organs are in place, and some of them are even functioning already.  According to The Pregnancy Journal, baby’s pancreas has started to secrete insulin and the liver has started secreting bile.  Maybe it’s a silly thing to be excited about, but I think that is so cool. 🙂

This is the last week of my first trimester, which means that pregnancy should settle down a bit for the next 13 to 14 weeks.  I haven’t been too sick feeling so far, but it’ll be nice to not have to worry about that as much.  And I’ve already been feeling less tired. 

It won’t be long before I start showing.  This is the week that my uterus will “pop” out above my pubic bone though itwill likely be a few more weeks before it’s obvious to other people.

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babystuff1.jpgThis was a weekend of family. First my in-laws came into town to buy us our very first baby gift: a car seat and baby’s first Pooh bear. It was our first time at Babies R Us, and I must admit I was more than a little overwhelmed. But it was very generous of C.’s dad and step-mom to take us on our first baby shopping trip–especially considering they had done the same for the other two expecting moms in the family the weekend previous. It’s a big year for the family as the three cousins are due November, December, January. One right after another.

The next day my parents came into town bearing lots of gifts. My mom had bought maternity clothes for me and lots of cute outfits for the baby–prepared for either gender. She also brought several of her handmade baby afghans, which are so cool I’ll save them for their own post later in the week. 🙂

I learned a few things this weekend. First, I learned that we are falling behind already as my in-laws have names and themes all picked out and we have nothing. (I’m mostly kidding about this, btw.  I’m happy with what have have planned and not planned at this point.) Second, and most importantly, I realized how hard it will be on the kids to be so close in age. I have a cousin about a month older than me, and we’ve been compared all our lives. We still are, and I think we both feel the other is “winning.” At least, I know I do. It’s a sensitive subject, and I hate to think of my kid growing up with that same issue facing his or her relationship with his/her two cousins.babystuff3.jpg

But enough of the serious stuff! Back to the cute baby stuff! My personal favorite of all the great baby clothes my mom bought is the tiny pink onesie (sp?) you can see in this pic. It says “My name is Lulu,and I am a ladybug.” I just think that is the cutest thing! I’m almost hoping for a girl just so she can wear it!

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This journal  was a gift from  my in-laws.   It’s a cool blend of pregnancy info and journal, and we all know I’ve been a chronic journaler for years, so I was especially excited  to personalize this book.  It was a bit confusing at first because the book tracks pregnancy from conception  rather than from the last period.  So in  the  book, I’m in week 10, which reflects the baby’s gestational age.  Once I figured that out, it  was much easier to fill in my dates and info. 

The most interesting part of this book are the “Childbirth in Other Cultures” blurbs scattered throughout.  I find it absolutely fascinating that the same experience can be viewed so differently by different people.  Last  year, I read a very interesting book called Our Babies, Ourselves by Meredith Small, which talked about parenting across cultures.  It was basically an indictment against the way people parent in industrialized cultures, but if you can get past that, there are some very interesting pieces of information in there.   Perhaps it will even convince some parents to adopt non-western parenting practices such as co-sleeping or extended breastfeeding, which  are rather common in many countries but not as common in the U.S.

We have a fw months yet before we have to   make any hard  and fast decisions about parenting, which is good because there are a lot of decisions to make.  And, knowing myself, I’ll have to consult all the books I can get my hands on before I  decide anything.  It’s  going to be a busy six months…

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