What is Oppositional Defiant Disorder?

While family may put up with temper tantrums, kids find the outside world less forgiving; they need to be able to control their tempers so they can relate well to their peers, teachers and the other adults in his life.

Sandy's Surprise -- Half Way There!

It was so much better than sitting in a sterile waiting room. I had my fur babies around, my husband right there, and I got to listen to baby's heartbeat on my couch!

Sandy's Surprise -- Cold Thread of Fear

And then there's a part of me that feels this really cold thread of fear in my heart for him. He'll have to go out and deal with the world, and get hurt, and learn his own lessons, and that really scares me.

Sandy's Surprise -- Discussing Names

So between my husband thinking "Zeus" is the only suitable name for our son, and that every other name is a "chump" name, we are still clueless as to what this little guy is going to be called. *Sigh* Back to the drawing board..

Transitioning Your Child to a Toddler Bed

So he's giving up the crib? You've been to the store and picked out the cutest toddler bed? All of you are totally excited? Except instead of rolling over and falling asleep, the way he did in the crib, now he comes out every two minutes to find you? All evening long?

Sandy's Surprise -- Unassisted Home Birth

I'm actually thinking of nixing the midwife anyway. Not because I want to give birth in the base hospital (ew!), but because I think I want to give birth at home -- alone. Tim is so not comfortable with this

Sandy's Surprise -- So Many Birthing Options

We did a little more digging around, and unearthed this birthing center that is covered by our insurance, because it operates under an OB but employs certified nurse midwives. It sounds really, really nice...

Summer Activities for Kids to Do With Minimal Supervision

You need your kids to play with minimal supervision and they've run out of ideas? That's one definition of summer! Of course, they often just need a little refueling time with Mom and then they can exercise their own creative muscles.

Sandy's Surprise -- Adding a Doula

I spoke with my Bradley instructor afterwards and told her about our maybe-change in plans and she said a great idea would be to take a doula with us. The midwife in the birthing center setting obviously couldn't be with us all of the time, and she said a doula would be valuable

Sandy's Surprise -- Midwives, Ruffles and Bradley Classes

On a fun note, I got in the baby's dust ruffle and valance yesterday! I am so excited! The lady did a REALLY good job! It looks and smells so fresh and clean! Tim and I are going to put it up this weekend.

Sandy's Surprise -- Amazing Baby Boy

I am just amazed by this little boy already! He is this whole little person with his own idiosyncrasies. He did some funny things (legs by his head, thumbs up, punching at the transducer) and we were all laughing.

Sandy's Surprise -- Impatient to Hold Him!

And I just got this huge ache for my own baby boy. I wanted to hold him so bad! I am just so done with being pregnant, I want October to be here! I am ready for that next step! I know I'll miss certain aspects of being pregnant and my pre-child life, but we are so ready to be parents already.

Sandy's Surprise -- Lukewarm Grandparents

I got the chance to speak with one of the agencies we're considering for adoption next spring, and they said we could pretty much get started anytime after the baby arrives.

Sandy's Surprise -- A Bad Case of the Hiccups!

Unbeknownst (love that word) to me, there was lots of red chili pepper flakes on the slices. I ate them thinking they were spicy, but not really caring. After I let them settle in my tummy for a bit, I lay down to try to sleep. And then I burst out laughing because I gave my poor baby son a bad case of the hiccups!

Sandy's Surprise -- Wee Baby Kicks

Baby Boy kicks a lot when I recline myself back on the couch! It's so funny to feel him, and almost a little alien. Somehow I imagine worms or snakes in my belly - ewww! But thankfully it's just my tiny little son's feet or hands

Sandy's Surprise -- Shopping for Capris

Yesterday Tim and I went shopping for a pair of capris for me and ended up getting Baby Boy a bunch of stuff instead! It was so much fun though! Old Navy was having an awesome sale and we couldn't resist. Here's what we got him:

Preparing Your Little One for the Separation While You Birth the New Baby

Many women worry about leaving their older child when they go to the hospital to give birth to their baby. It doesn't help that labor is by definition unpredictable in both timing and length, making it even harder to prepare a child who is often little more than a baby himself.

Sandy's Surprise -- Little Stirrings of Love

So far, the love I have for this baby can be equated to the love I would feel, say, for a cute, puffy, bunny rabbit that might come to our house to visit on a regular basis. I am very attached to him, and I want him to get strong and healthy...

Does Baby Einstein Actually Lower IQ?

Although sophisticated advertising claims the DVDs teach babies to understand and speak earlier, no independent research has supported this claim. Recently, however, a University of Washington study of 8- to 16-month-old babies reported that the babies who watched baby DVDs understood FEWER words than those who did not watch them.

Putting Positive Discipline into Practice

Positive Discipline starts by having a good relationship with your child, so that he responds to gentle guidance as opposed to threats and punishment. The most effective discipline strategy is to make sure your child wants to please you.