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Tag Archives: bonding

To Hat or Not to Hat

It’s National Hat Day and although we appreciate the value of a a great hat, there’s a time and a place.

It has become customary to put a little knit cap on your baby’s brand new noggin to keep them nice and toasty just after birth. Although it sounds like a great plan to keep your baby warm, it can actually disrupt valuable bonding and hormone production, and may result in an overheated baby!

We all love that sweet baby smell.. Johnsons and Johnsons tried to bottle it.. there’s a reason why we love to smell babies, especially our own!

Skin to skin contact has some incredible benefits immediately after birth and as your baby is getting introduced to their new environment. This contact benefits the mother as much as baby, and begins the bonding process that will be important during their breastfeeding journey. Skin to skin improves a baby’s respiration, regulates their body temperature and reduces stress and anxiety. The first hour after birth is important for the infant as it’s their first opportunity to become acquainted with their parents, allowing them to become more emotionally stable and confident as they age.

When your are skin to skin with your baby and able to smell your baby, your body releases Oxytocin, the hormone that rules labor and is known as the LOVE hormone. Smelling your babys head releases oxytocin, which helps your uterus contract, helps expel your placenta and minimize bleeding. Oxytocin also helps you fall in love with your baby.

So why do they put a hat on your baby?

The head and face are important for a newborn’s natural instincts to acquaint with the mother’s scent, warmth and heartbeat. Newborns will nuzzle into their mother’s chest and and begin searching for their mother’s breast. Oxytocin is a powerful hormone released in the mother when her baby’s scent is nearby, that triggers the final stages of labor and increases milk production. This is one of the many beautifully simple ways that nature has perfected the childbirth process, and that cute tiny hat is getting in the way!

When mom is available, she can regulate her baby’s temperature with her OWN BODY and no hat is needed. Yes.. that’s right.. when baby is skin to skin with mom, mothers temp will increase or decrease to heat or cool her baby! Pretty incredible!

So when should you choose a hat?

If your baby is born premature, underweight or has certain medical complication, a hat may be a good idea. In some of these situations, the mother or baby is not well enough to utilize skin to skin contactWhen skin to skin contact isn’t possible, hats, swaddling and warmers might be the only way to regulate your newborn’s temperature. If baby is able to be held, but mom isn’t available, Dad or another family member or friend can hold baby skin to skin.

This period after birth is unique and shouldn’t be interrupted by anything, including a tiny hat.

Some birth professionals say that babies remember birth. This period of bonding is unique in that it is the first impression your baby has of this great big new world. These impressions are theoretically associated with the way adults perceive the world, so we should make it count!

Besides, there’s plenty of opportunities for cute hats once your baby is a little older.

Holiday Family Activities

The holidays are best spent surrounded by family and friends and your new baby 

Just because we are in the beautiful and sunny state of Florida doesn’t mean we are missing out on holiday spirit.

With all the hectic to do lists of the holiday season, it’s easy to lose touch and become overwhelmed. Take the opportunity each day to make the holiday season a little extra magical with your little ones, and the season will surely be sweeter.

It’s never too late to start up some new family traditions that will grow with your kids! So get out, spread some joy and make some unforgettable holiday memories!

Decorate the House

Decking the halls for Christmas was always our favorite part of the holiday season. We would beg our parents to take the decorations out of the attic and leave no room without a little something festive. Make some homemade decorations with your kids like garland, wreaths or advent calendars and surprise them with an afternoon of themed movies, cookies, and decorating the house inside and out. Once your lights are hung and glowing outside, take a drive and check out the light displays in local Sarasota to wind your littles down for bed. It works like a charm.

Decorate Holiday Cookies

It might be a little messy, but toddlers love decorating cookies. With a little extra planning on your part, the whole process can go a lot smoother and give you more of an opportunity to get creative with your kids. Make your cookies ahead of time in assorted shapes, with plenty of time for them to cool. Your kids won’t have to wait for cookies to bake and cool, and they can jump right in to decorate. You can even ice a dozen cookies with their royal icing base colors, allowing your kids to put the finishing touches on each cookie like sprinkles, sparkles, and candy. The whole family can spend time together making these tasty treats for holiday snack time or drop some off at school for a festive treat.

Throw a Holiday Party

The holidays are time for celebrating! Have your little guys help you throw a holiday party, decorate and plan your menu. This can double as a fun playdate for your kids complete with themed crafts, story time, dress up and games while the parents can socialize and relax throughout the night. Kids love a good party and helping you plan the event will keep the whole family involved in this awesome tradition. Parents can help the kids decorate gingerbread houses for a contest and play some games for a night of memories with close family and friends. This time of year, you don’t need a reason to gather together and celebrate!

Gather your family together each week during the holiday season, devoting time to a little holiday cheer.

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