Baby Baby Care

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    Ah, a baby's floppy-headed stage. There's nothing more nerve-wracking than putting a shirt on a baby with an elastic neck and soft spots on his head. It's like aiming for a moving target of Jell-O ... on two hours of sleep. Of course your reflexes are off.

    You move left ... he flops right. Go right ... and he does a surprise maneuver. His head falls forward and he spits up all over you and that cute little shirt you are trying to get over his head. Game over. That little bugger.

    Here are the 50 steps ... yes, 50! ... moms go through to put a shirt on a newborn baby. It's really comical when you break it down.

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    Deliver a baby and, suddenly, it's all about poop. We talk about it, analyze it ... even smell it during our few hours of sleep. We count our baby's bowel movements, note the consistency, and worry about constipation.

    Moms especially spend a great deal of time stressing about that last one. According to Dr. Melissa King, pediatrician, director of urgent care, and Dr. Mom Squad blogger at Dayton Children's Hospital, it's for good reason. "Constipation can become chronic if it is not addressed," she warns.

    So, what can mom do to help a constipated baby poop

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    There's nothing worse for a mom than watching your baby be wheeled off for his circumcision at the hospital (except maybe seeing it performed in front of you during the bris ... yikes!). It's your baby boy, and it's his penis, and there's a knife involved. Ouch.

    But you both get through it ... and you're on constant penis watch to make sure he is okay. Then you see some bleeding at the circumcision site and start to panic. Is it normal for my son's circumcision to bleed?

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    It is so bleeping hard to install car seats. Figuring out how to squeeze that hulking contraption into your car, then weave the seat belt through the proper holes, then loosen and tighten the straps ... it's enough to send any parent into a road rage even before they even stick their key in the ignition. That's why moms and dads will have a chuckle watching this video -- a public service announcement by the Toyota-sponsored safety campaign Buckle Up for Life, which portrays parent after parent struggling to install car seats, with hilarious results.

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    Do you wake up in the morning, French-braid your daughter's hair, volunteer coach at your son's soccer match, feed them an organic, healthy lunch, and still manage to squeeze in a Pilates class, run your "dream business" on the side, and greet your husband with a kiss and yet another home-cooked meal once he's home from work? Yeah, right! The truth is many moms still strive to be perfect parents even when they know these sort of scenarios are but pie in the sky dreams. New research suggests that the huge gap between our ambitions and reality is making new mothers anxious and depressed.

    Carrie Wendel-Hummell, a University of Kansas sociologist, says the anxiety and depression typically blamed on hormones after baby arrives might be something else entirely.

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    Kelly Clarkson is my girl crush today because she had the guts to do something my mother would totally scold me for doing: she took her teeny weeny little baby girl River Rose to her very first concert!

    At the tender age of not-yet-three-months, the lucky little girl got to see a couple of legends: Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood, who performed in Chicago. But, smart mommy that she is, Kelly took all the necessary precautions prior to exposing her little one, who was born on June 12, to some really loud music: and the photo she snapped and posted on her Twitter account is too adorable for words.

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    Get ready to hate me. Or steal my husband. Or think I’m the worst mother in the whole wide world. Or maybe you’ll admire my ingenuity!

    I am a miser of my sleep. I don’t do well when I’m tired. I get really cranky and tend to take it out on the closest person -- who would be my dear, sweet husband. He certainly doesn’t deserve it, so I always say our arrangement was made for his own good.

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    Who gets less sleep than a new mom? Tending to our cute little criers every two or three hours is downright exhausting. Sleep stupor brings on a whole level of desperation to catch some zzzzzzzzzzz's ... even leading some moms down the co-sleeping path to get some rest. But new research may change your mind about that methodology.

    According to a new study, bed-sharing is linked with poor sleep quality in infants. Surprising, isn't it?

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    Infant massage may sound a little woo woo, but hey, who doesn't love a little pampering? And as the benefits of infant massage continue to grow, more and more moms are giving it a try. "Some of the benefits of infant massage include helping you to bond with your baby, as well as helping babies relax, improving their sleep, digestion, and bowel movements, and developing their body awareness, which is important for movement," explains Diane Bahr, a certified infant massage instructor and author of Nobody Ever Told Me (or My Mother) That! Some studies also suggest that it can enhance a baby's immune system, which is particularly important for premature babies.

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    Your child will likely be taking a lot of tests in his or her life, many of which cause them (the SATs) and you (driver's license!) a lot of angst. But the first test your baby will ever take is the Apgar test, which he or she will "take" about a minute after being born. The test and resulting score, developed by Virginia Apgar, an obstetric anesthesiologist during the mid-1900s, are used worldwide as a quick, easy, and reliable way to gauge a newborn's health. And the good news is your baby is likely to pass with flying colors, so it's nothing you as a new mom should stress out about. And it won't hurt your baby one bit.

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