Read Aloud

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Chances are you spend a lot of time talking to your baby in parentese, but it’s equally important for infants to absorb the sounds of adult language. One great way to do so? Read aloud to your baby in quiet moments, whether nursing or just sitting together in a calm place.

If you feel like you never have time to read the news or a book anymore as a new parent, this is the perfect excuse. The next time you want to do some adult reading, snuggle up and read out loud!

I did this with Travis without any prompting when he was an infant, reading my way through the entire novel Crossing to Safety in out quiet moments (much easier with a first child!). Today, I remembered to do so with Veronika.

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We tested out a newspaper article first, but I find it more enjoyable to read from a magazine. Whatever you pick, I recommend something with lots of vocabulary. Simple and elegant prose seems perfect to me – slow, quiet articles and books, rather than those with lots of actions. Although that is only my preference!

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Of course, read whatever pleases you – even the latest celebrity gossip would do. Baby won’t care; he or she will just love the sound of your voice. I kept catching her mouth quirking into a little smile, in fact.

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Happy reading!

Visit a Bakery

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I’ve been posting suggested field trips for even the youngest babies, and here’s a reminder that some are not necessarily for the baby… they’re for you, stay-at-home parent!

Getting out can feel great, especially if this child is your first and the weeks of “nesting” are starting to seem confining. But you also want to go some place relatively calm. Bakeries are perfect.

Head off to your nearest local bakery, and make an afternoon of it. Baby can snuggle in your arms when awake, or nap peacefully if asleep (Veronika slept the entire outing!). Meanwhile, you get a nice pause and a tasty treat – vegan chocolate chip cookies and a cup of decaf? Don’t mind if I do!

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Big sibs can of course come along for the fun.

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If baby wakes up, there are lots of things to excite the senses in a bakery; the smell of fresh-basked goods (even though he or she can’t eat them yet!); the noise of coffee grinders or the bell on the door as customers pass in and out; lots of people to people-watch. And of course, yummy treats to ogle!

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