Things I Plan on Doing Differently

Poor first children. They are our guinea pigs. There are so many parenting methods and no one right way to do things. We fumble around and try many things until we find out what works for us. Of course, I hear many times this happens again with the second child because what works for one doesn’t necessarily work for the other. That said, there are some things I plan on changing this time around.

Co-Sleeping from the Start

By now I’m sure everyone has heard about the controversial Milwaukee ad campaign. V slept in a bassinet for the first six months or so. However, the first week I often slept with her in the recliner because it was the only way I felt it was safe for us to sleep together. I was terrified that I’d roll over in my sleep and suffocate my baby. Now I’m pretty sure I wouldn’t have. We co-slept all through teething and we still co-sleep every morning. She sleeps tucked into my armpit, which keeps us both from rolling around.

I don’t know if I’ll be hesitant again to try this with a newborn, they DO have such floppy little necks, but it’s something I’d love to do this time around. Babies sleep so much better when they are in physical contact with their mothers.

Introduce Veggies First

After rice cereal, mashed up banana was V’s first solid food. To this day she still loves fruit and refuses to eat any vegetables. I hate wasting baby food but this time I’ll need to be more consistent about offering veggies. I keep seeing kids at my preschool munching on zucchini and thinking, “Wow, that will never be V.”

Nap Time = Crib Time

V has always fallen asleep in my lap while nursing. It was always simpler. If she woke up while I was at the computer I could just whip out a boob and let her nurse to sleep again. To this day if she’s tired she’ll bring me the Boppy pillow. I can NOT get her to nap in the crib for me at home. The closest I can get is to lie down with her on our bed and wait until she complains herself to sleep. Then pray she doesn’t wake when I get up and leave the room. Obviously this is a real hassle now and something that I can’t repeat with a toddler running around.

Soft Cheese

I first heard about the Bleu cheese ban from a pregnant friend and thought she was being overly paranoid. Then my husband and I had a visit with a nurse who really pushed the no-soft cheese rule. She was really adamant. No soft cheese. Nothing from a counter that shares air with soft cheese (i.e. the supermarket deli). No Caesar salad dressing from restaurants. I faithfully avoided soft cheeses with my first pregnancy even though I thought it was probably overkill.

Here’s the thing though. The USDA requires all US soft cheeses to be pasteurized. It also requires that all imported cheeses be aged at least 60 days. This is all to prevent listeria. I knew all this the last go-around, but it was my first baby and better safe than sorry.

Now I’m totally eating that stuff. Listeria is not exactly confined to cheese. Just look at the cantaloupe outbreak from earlier this year. Food contamination is kind of a crap shoot. Pretty much anything can be contaminated. Foods that have lots of nooks and crannies (like cantaloupe rind) are usually worse because bacteria won’t get washed off during cleaning. Honestly I’m more worried about raspberries. You can take precautions with foods such as these by blanching or cutting in a way that avoids bringing skin contaminants into the fruit. But if a food is contaminated you’re screwed and there’s not much you can do about it. Produce can be dangerous.

So I’m sticking with my cheese.


What about you? What kinds of things have you done or are going to do differently?


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