Saturday, April 28, 2012

Sweet Baby Snuggles

 I recently asked mothers what was their favorite time of day and why. I wasn't surprised at all to see the responses of moms who said the time they most love is when baby is snuggled in bed with them. What's not to love about a milk-drunk baby nestled securely in your arms in the comfort of your bed? Combine that with the relaxing effect of breastfeeding hormones, and you've got a delightfully peaceful scene.
Throughout the history of the world, mothers have known that the safest place for a baby to sleep is snuggled next to them. However, with the invention of pillow top mattresses and lots of fluffy bedding, suddenly it isn't so safe any more. In fact the American Academy of Pediatrics says the safest place for an infant to sleep is in a separate but proximate sleep environment. So are moms who snuggle with baby in bed actually putting baby at risk?

The answer is complicated. Noted pediatrician Dr. William Sears has some very interesting observations about the matter. Dr. James McKenna heads the Notre Dame Mother Baby Behavioral Sleep Laboratory. As a biological anthropologist, he has devoted years of research to the effects of co-sleeping on mother and baby. It's no coincidence that so many mothers say their favorite time of day with baby is when they're snuggling in bed. There are numerous health advantages to the infant from sleeping close to its mother. However, parents benefit as well.

So am I recommending that all parents bring baby to bed with them? Absolutely not!! Dr. McKenna has some important safe co-sleeping guidelines that parents need to read if they're contemplating having baby in the same bed. Many mothers really don't feel comfortable having baby sleep all night in the same bed; those mothers can benefit tremendously from the Arm's Reach Co-sleeper which allows baby to sleep right next to mother without being in the same bed.

Regardless of how you choose to sleep, remember that those sweet baby snuggles are priceless, and pretty soon your baby will be a toddler who is way too busy for long snuggles!

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Celebration of Smiles

Can you imagine what it would be like to know your baby needs surgery but not be able to afford it? That is the plight of many mothers in third world countries whose children suffer from cleft lips and cleft palates. Imagine being the grandmother of a beautiful little girl who was rejected by both her parents  because of her cleft lip. Then imagine the intense relief and joy you would feel upon learning that your precious little one would get the needed surgery at no cost to you.

It seems somewhat incomprehensible to us here in the states. We have insurance and Medicaid for those who can't afford insurance. But that isn't the case everywhere. That's why Operation Smile has been sending surgical teams around the world for 30 years. They have changed countless lives and brought smiles to over 200,000 children and their thankful parents.

Now you have the opportunity to be part of this incredible adventure of healing. On April 21 photographer Darlene Korab of Lagniappe Photography will be at A Nurturing Moment as part of the national Celebration of Smiles events. For just $24 you will receive a mini-session and a 5X7 portrait of your child. Southerland's Photography is providing the printing services, so every penny of your $24 will go directly to Operation Smile.

It only costs $240 to provide one cleft repair! We're hoping that our ANM family will provide for 3 cleft repairs!! Make your appointment today by calling Darlene at 256-679-1038, then stop by our event page to let us know you're on board!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Win an ITouch from FridaBaby

Have you discovered the NoseFrida yet? It's a wonderful alternative to the old-fashioned bulb syringe. Our moms love it, and we have several local doctors who regularly recommend it for their patients. If you haven't tried it yet, here's why you should:

  • It uses gentle parent-controlled suction to clear baby's nose.
  • It doesn't go into the nose; rather it covers the outer opening to the nose.
  • Unlike a traditional bulb syringe, it is fully sterilizable so you don't have nasty germs sticking around.
  • A removable filter ensures that no germs pass from baby to mom.
Now there's one more awesome reason to take a good look at this amazing little snot sucker: The FridaBaby contest that's going on right now!  They want to see what moves your baby has. One lucky parent is going to win an ITouch. The runners-up will get ITune gift cards. All you have to do is upload a video of your baby's best moves here.  

Let's see if one of our ANM mamas can't win that ITouch! As an added incentive, if one of our moms wins, we'll throw in a $25 ANM gift certificate! So get out that camera, turn on the tunes, and have some mommy-baby fun!