Toddler Development

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    Baby's first steps videos are constantly uploaded and shared with friends and family, but the latest -- of a toddler learning to walk -- will really melt your heart. Two-year-old Kayden Kinckle was born with omhalocele, a birth defect in which an infant's organs develop outside the body, and had a band wrapped around both his legs and feet. When he was just a baby, he had two abdominal surgeries, and earlier this year, doctors amputated his right foot and his left leg. And now with the help of a walker, Kayden has taken his first steps.

    Grab your tissues and take a look at the video below:

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    Hearing a baby coo his or her first word can make any parent a little emotional. But hearing them drop their first F-bomb or utter a curse word will make you downright lose it. Or applaud it. Either way, you'll be shocked the first time you hear your precious angel curse like a drunken' sailor. And unless you're a precious angel yourself, chances are that day will come a lot sooner than you think. (Hint: Guess where your kids are learning it?)

    We asked moms to share their child's first swear word ...

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    Once your toddler starts talking, it's hard to get her to stop. Soon enough, she'll start associating words with the reaction they get, even if she's not quite sure what they mean. The first time she drops that F-bomb, you might be completely taken aback. After all, your cherub-cheeked baby couldn't possibly know what that means, right?

    Chances are, she doesn't. But if you express shock or even laughter, you've given her the kind of reaction she's going to want to get again. So she might continue to use that inappropriate word -- on the playground, at preschool, at church, in the supermarket.

    The good news is there's a way to curb cursing before it gets worse. Here's how to handle it, according to Amy Morin, a licensed clinical social worker and psychotherapist in Lincoln, Maine.

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    If your baby sucks their thumb, you've probably heard the warnings: thumb sucking will ruin their teeth! Been trying to wrench that little digit out of baby's mouth ever since but struggling? You're not alone. As much as 46 percent of "typically developing" kids under 4 suck their thumbs.

    And yes, it can damage their teeth, says Dr. David Zirlin, pediatric dentist at White Plains Pediatric Dentistry. But you can stop pulling that thumb from baby's mouth right now -- and don't bother grabbing a pacifier.

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    Ask most firstborns how Mom and Dad treat the baby of the family, and you're sure to hear a ration of complaints. They're spoiled! Adored! Pampered. But is it true? Do you really treat your lastborn child differently?

    Is the youngest child in the family any different from their siblings? And is it because of birth order, or would they have been the same kid if they were born first? Turns out science has a lot to say on what makes your lastborn child tick:

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    Got a "time-out" chair in your home? You might want to put it back in the playroom. While time-outs were the discipline method du jour for parents in the '90s, they've fallen out of favor with today's more progressive child behavior experts. "Time-outs were originally a way for kids to take a break, think about what they did, maybe even have remorse for it, and settle down and return," says Tovah P. Klein, Ph.D, author of How Toddlers Thrive. "They don't make sense at all for young children."

    The two biggest reasons to skip time-outs? They're not healthy for your child's emotional well-being (now or later), and they're not effective in terms of curbing "bad" behavior. (If you're constantly giving your child a time-out, that tells you something, doesn't it?)

    Let's take a closer look at this form of discipline.

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    In the blink of an eye, your baby went from helpless newborn to boisterous toddler. And you know what that means: Time for preschool.


    While some moms are quick to strap a backpack onto their 2-year-old and send them on their merry way, others agonize over whether their toddler is ready for preschool.


    The decision of whether to send your little one off to the land of gluing, cutting, and snack time doesn't have to be fraught with anxiety. In fact, your child may be more ready for preschool ... than you are.

    This list of dos and don'ts can help you decide if it's time for preschool.

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    All children progress at different paces, so sometimes it's natural for parents to overlook or ignore issues their toddler is having with speech.

    But communication disorders are prevalent in America, and early intervention is key in treatment. "Parents should take children for a speech evaluation any time they're concerned," says Diane Paul, PhD, Director of Clinical Issues in Speech-Language Pathology at the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association.

    Knowing what is and isn't normal when it comes to language and speech development is extremely important, so we've broken down five important red flags to look out for. Here, some signs your child might need speech therapy. 

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    You don't deal with terrorists without years of CIA field training. Unless you're the parent of a toddler, in which case, you stroll into a Homeland situation completely unprepared and hope for the best. Here are some of the most important lessons I've learned from negotiating with my little Abu Booboo.

    * Never negotiate with terrorists. Period. Like Saul Berenson from Homeland, only let them think you're negotiating.

    * Agree to whatever they want, then secretly plot your way out of it. You can also say "no" and listen to them cry for three hours. But this is equally effective and much quieter. (Example: "You can sleep with us tonight. We'll pick you up from your bedroom later." Later, of course, they'll be asleep.)

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    Do you ever sit back and look at all our little girls in pink, and our little boys in blue, and wonder: How on Earth did we get here? Why will my daughter never, ever wear a color other than pink? (Oh no wait, she'll wear purple, too.) Who made these rules, anyway? Well, here's a video that gets you. Buzzfeed has lampooned our kids' gender color rules by flipping the scenario. Wouldn't it look CRAZY if we had the same gender rules for grown-ups? 

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