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Look Who’s Talking

February 9, 2009 — Category: Baby Gifts — Written by Kelly

Another great baby gift idea is to buy the parents a course of baby classes. There are a variety of classes out there that are designed to encourage parents and baby to bond and a widely available option now is Baby Signing.

Baby signing teaches parents how to communicate with their baby before they start to speak by introducing the parents to simple signs. There are a variety of signs that can be taught to use with hearing babies of six months and above.

These simple signs enable a baby to communicate with their parents as each one relates to a key word. Signs for words such as hot, cold, milk, food, finished, more, pain, daddy, mummy and thank you are taught enabling the baby to communicate basic needs. As courses progress other signs are introduced to communicate certain activities or animals.

The classes are designed to be fun and the baby’s attention is grabbed through using percussion instruments, singing, pictures and other props which relate to the signs. The signs can also be incorporated into nursery rhymes to reinforce them.

The main benefit of introducing signing before a baby can speak is that it significantly speeds up the speech development. There is also less frustration experienced by babies as they can use signing to make themselves understood. Again it is a great way to encourage bonding and a fun, stimulating activity.

Soothing Baby Massage

February 8, 2009 — Category: Baby Advice — Written by Adam

When looking for gifts for baby and mum an excellent idea is to book a course of either baby massage or a post pregnancy treat for mum at the local spa. Mum will find it hard to find time for herself in the initial months after the baby is born so buying her a massage will be a great treat and as her body recovers from the birth it can speed up the process and relieve aches, strains and tiredness.

Baby massage is becoming increasingly popular. It has long been acknowledged that touch is a basic need that humans have and can dramatically speed up a baby’s development and growth if introduced from newborn. Baby massage classes teach parents techniques that the baby will find relaxing and soothing and therefore allow the need for touch to be nurtured.

The baby massage exercises that are taught help to enhance that all important bond between the parent and baby and are excellent for relieving stress and creating relaxation. Babies get a sense of wellbeing as massage stimulates the release of feel-good hormones endorphins.

The distressing baby ailment colic can be significantly relieved by baby massage reducing crying. It is also a great technique to have to soothe upset babies and if done before bedtime it can encourage a sound sleep. It is also believed to boost a baby’s immune system.

Bond with Baby Yoga

February 7, 2009 — Category: Baby Gifts, Baby Ideas — Written by Adam

If you’re looking for unusual gifts for babies then a course of baby yoga sessions is a great idea.

Yoga for babies is enjoying a wave of popularity at the moment and is a great way for mum and baby to bond with each other. It introduces both mental and physical stimulation to the baby by teaching mum gentle exercises and movements that she can do with the baby.

It is a fabulous way for mum or dad to bond with the baby. Classes are held in relaxed yet lively atmospheres and encourage the parents and baby to relax whilst also making the baby more aware of their body. It also builds confidence in the parents about handling their baby as initially they may feel all fingers and thumbs!

There is also evidence to suggest that baby yoga can help to soothe baby afflictions such as poor sleeping patterns and the dreaded colic. It stimulates digestion ensuring babies don’t suffer from gripes and wind. Other benefits are that it speeds up the development of muscular coordination.

Baby yoga is designed to be fun and classes are designed around rhythm, movement and song. Parents can then introduce baby yoga into the daily routine of play and wind down time before bed. Mum can also benefit as some classes have sessions for mum specifically.

A Weekend Away

February 6, 2009 — Category: Baby Advice — Written by Kelly

If you’re thinking of baby gifts and have decided it might be a nice idea to treat the new parents to a weekend away you might be put off by the thought of them trying to cope with the baby at a hotel. Travelling with baby need not be stressful. Most hotels provide well for babies and offer a range of products. However they may not be the brands and products that the baby is used to so the parents will need to check this out first.

Hotels also offer the use of their own baby cots. If the parents do decide to use the hotel facilities they should take blankets and toys that are familiar to the baby to help them settle in their new surroundings.

Some parents can fall into the trap of packing a week’s worth of baby paraphernalia when they go away however this isn’t practical and you can get away with taking one day’s worth of supplies for bottles and clothes. They should be prepared to wash and clean bottles and clothes so that it’s possible to minimise the baggage.

A good pushchair is essential. Pushchairs need to be lightweight and compact when travelling. A pushchair should be easily manoeuvred in and out of the vehicle. Those that have multi-positional seats are great when travelling as the parents can choose to let the baby sight-see or snooze. There are also plenty of added extras such as trays and extra compartments for storage which will be invaluable on an extended trip.

Overnight Stays with Baby

February 4, 2009 — Category: Baby Advice — Written by Kelly

Following on from our series of articles on baby travel once you have mastered the short day trip, it’s time to upgrade to something more challenging – the overnight stay! This needn’t be as daunting as it sounds and you’ll find that you only need to extend your travel checklist slightly to accommodate the extra time away from home. It might be a good idea to choose a trip to the baby’s grandparents as your first overnight adventure.

Add to the list some extra blankets and of course extra clothing and nappies for the baby. Even visiting Nan and Granddad may pose very new, strange, sounds and scents to the baby so it’s a good idea to have a pushchair which can double up as a crib. The baby will feel much more at home which should help him or her to settle in the new surroundings.

If you think you will be staying away overnight on a regular basis then there are some great travel cots available that can also double up as a playpen. Along with other travel accessories this is a great idea as a gift for baby so add it to your wish list. Many come in practical bags so they are easy to carry and you can even find ones that can be used as a changing table.

Preparing Baby for Travelling

February 2, 2009 — Category: Baby Advice — Written by Kelly

One of the major things to consider when you have a newborn baby is travelling. The art to success is beginning the process slowly and taking time to plan. If you put in place a simple checklist both you and your baby can be sure of first-class comfort and minimum stress. Take baby steps and soon you’ll have baby travel mastered!

Start off with introducing your baby to travelling by taking him or her out on a few day trips. Perhaps go to see a locally based relative or friend. The basic equipment you are going to need is a changing bag, a pushchair and of course a car seat. You’ll find that most car seats these days convert easily into a handy carry cot. To ensure you have all the necessary bits and bobs for baby travel it’s a good idea to plan in advance of the birth and let friends and family have a list of the items you are going to need as ideas for baby gifts.

In your changing bag you’ll need items such as enough nappies to cover the time you’ll be away. A good guide is to pack one nappy for every two hours you plan to be out and about. Take a couple of blankets to swaddle the baby, extra clothing in case of nappy accidents, bottle if you are feeding the baby formula milk and an extra t-shirt for you! A changing bag with lots of pockets will help you to store wipes and creams and take some plastic bags to store soiled clothes.

Baskets and baby gifts

January 30, 2009 — Category: Baby Gifts — Written by Adam

Assessing what new parents might want or need and coming up with new baby gift ideas can sometimes be a headache. With this in mind it’s sometimes nice to get a few ideas and pointers as to what might be an easy present. One that is not over fussy or too personal.

Gifts like teddies are very good as they are non gender specific and look cute and cuddly. Just a simple gesture to say, ‘congratulations’ to the happy couple and to celebrate the baby’s birth is sufficient sometimes. You may want to personalise it a little by buying a neck scarf with the new baby’s name on it and placing it around the teddy’s neck.

A newborn baby gift basket is also very touching and considerate. You can buy neutral baskets that are not pink or blue. They have cow motifs and plain white collections that can be bought before the baby is born and you know whether it is a boy or a girl.

There are beautifully put together ‘hand puppet’ style baby gift baskets which add an element of play to parenting experience and also, it has the function of perhaps enticing a toddler into bath time. All these gifts would make wonderful additions to the parent’s collection.

Double up when you buy gifts

January 29, 2009 — Category: Baby Gifts — Written by Diane

Don’t they grow fast? No sooner have you told everyone what a beautiful little baby you’ve than they’re bouncing about showing off to anyone and everyone in sight! By the time that your baby is just a few months old, you will start to realise that they have a few preferred activities.

Speak to parents and these ‘activities’ differ from one child to the next. Some parents guarantee you that their baby just loves their swing- and that they couldn’t think of a better way to help the baby relax- until it is time for a snooze.

On the other hand some parents couldn’t think of a worse scenario before bedtime! For them it’s a few rocks in a pushchair and that’s it-they’re away (the baby, not Mum and dad!) little cherubs.

Here’s a thought for those of you that have found their baby liking certain activities, when people ask you if they can buy baby gifts for you then ask for a duplicate of what the child likes.

Now, we’re not saying huge swings or expensive pushchairs but rockers or little baby bouncers. For those people that look after your child regularly like grandparents it’s often a good idea to get duplicates. This helps to provide peace of mind and all the comfort your baby needs.

Calendar boys and girls

January 28, 2009 — Category: Baby Gifts — Written by Diane

Here’s another brilliant baby gift idea. Now you can create a unique calendar using your own photographs! Whether you’re a parent or a friend you can create a calendar for a loved one to mark the arrival of a new baby.

What about a magnificent gift to celebrate a first birthday? The brilliant thing about presents like this is that they are long lasting, never-to- be-forgotten presents that are not usually replicated by others.

Additionally, the recipient can make copies to send to far away friends or relatives. These A4 calendars are usually made from good quality paper with spiral binding and a metal hanger. They’re not garish and celebrate the birth and life of an infant in a loving way.

Most companies inform you that some imperfections blown up to a4 size will be slightly more noticeable but that’s part of the present’s charm.

They do say that landscape images fill the page better and that non digital photographs might need cropping. That said it can be difficult to buy newborn baby gifts sometimes so creating something unusual is the answer.

You can order these kinds of calendars online sending in the photos you wish to make up the months. What a first birthday surprise this would be!

Home alone with baby

January 27, 2009 — Category: Baby Advice — Written by Kelly

Being with your baby at home for the first time is a wonderful experience. You may feel a little anxious about the responsibility you have taken on and this is a very normal feeling. Parents that are experienced at looking after children still have that apprehensive feeling with a newborn baby so don’t worry.

A look around at all the cards and new baby gifts will reassure you that there are people that love and support you. You should see this as a special time, a time where you can really get to know your baby. You will spend a lot of time just looking at him/her anyway.

The great thing about this time at home is that you can learn how your baby behaves. You can learn the sleeping patterns and the feeding times. You will get to know what works and what doesn’t when comforting your loved one. All you are looking to do is to learn how to keep your baby safe and well.

A well baby will behave in certain ways. They will initially sleep a great deal and be settled. Their wake ups will invariably be about feeding and once fed should be contented.

When fed, babies tend to lie awake for a while before falling asleep again. They often cry because of hunger, loneliness or discomfort and you will attend to these displeasures naturally. A newborn baby is beautiful thing and learning to live with one is a challenging but very uplifting experience.

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