Parenting Guides

Here’s how I’m helping my baby be a better toddler

The most challenging part of having a baby is that eventually they start to grow up and they’re not babies anymore. It blows my mind that a year ago, Jamie was an infant whose main superpower was being adorable. He’s still quite the cutie, but now that he’s 16 months old, he’s added a few new skills to his arsenal.

Walking, running, (almost) jumping, dancing and saying words are just a few of the new tricks that Jamie has picked up over his year and a half of living. I’m excited to see all of the new things that he’s learning. At the same time, it kind of makes me sad. My baby boy is going to be a little boy soon. Then he’ll be a big boy. The next thing you know, he’s starting kindergarten, off to college, and then getting married. I’m not ready!!!

From baby to toddler

Well, ready or not, Jamie is getting older. Over the last few months, we’ve been transitioning all of his baby gear into toddler gear. We’ve given away the stuff that he’s outgrown, from clothes to swings and bottles, and are in the process of replacing them. As if being a mom isn’t emotional enough, folding up tiny outfits, gathering itty bitty socks, and wiping down baby toys is always a sure way to bring this mama to tears.

There’s one thing my toddler doesn’t have to give up, yet. We’re still rocking and rolling with our Safety 1st RIVA Travel System stroller, and I couldn’t be happier. The travel system comes with a car seat that has a perfect fit for babies who are 4 – 35 lbs. and the super lightweight stroller that weighs only 18 lbs.

My little guy’s curiosity requires us to strap him directly into the stroller most of the time, but the QuickClick® connect which allows the car seat to be securely attached to the stroller with a simple click is great for times when he’s napping and I don’t want to wake him up. He’ll outgrow the car seat soon, but we have a lot more time on the stroller.

It’s a good thing, too, because this stroller is the perfect mode of toddler transportation. Here are a few of the specs that moms of toddlers will appreciate the most:

  • Fast and easy one-hand Lift-to-fold, self-standing and compact
  • The only easy-to-clean, zip off machine wash and dry stroller fabrics
  • Generous multi-position SPF 50+ sun canopy with no wake peek-a-boo window
  • High impact stroller frame made from recycled materials
  • 2 dual use parent cup holders/cell phone stands (dishwasher top rack safe)
  • Pivoting and removable child tray with snack/cup holder (dishwasher top rack safe)
  • Roomy basket and flip-flop friendly brakes

That’s right, Mamas. The RIVA Travel System stroller can be closed with one hand, so the other can be holding on tightly to our little speedy explorers before they get a chance to run off!

So, what else needs to happen when baby is transitioning to toddler? Here are few things to start thinking about:

Potty training

I’ve heard boys are notoriously tougher than girls to potty train. We’ll see. All I know is that Jamie is super uncomfortable when he has a messy diaper, so I’m hoping that works in my favor to get him using the potty on his own faster!

Preschool or socialization classes

Once babies start to be toddlers, going to preschool or a playgroup helps them to learn how to be social. I take Jamie to a few meet-ups with other moms and toddlers, and it’s fun to watch him learn how to make friends and play.

Swimming lessons

Young toddlers are the perfect age to learn how to swim. They’re not old enough to be scared of the water, and they’re incredibly easy students. Signing your toddler up for swimming lessons is a great way to prepare them to be safe in the water later in life.

Chores 

Yes, toddlers can do chores. At 16 months, Jamie has to put his toys in the toy box, throw away trash, and wipe off the table after he eats. After all, he’s not a baby anymore!

Okay. Let me take a deep breath and relax. I still have time. When Jamie snuggles up on me with his pacifier in his mouth and his head on my chest at night, he lets me know that even though he’s a toddler, he’s still my baby. Thank goodness!

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