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Editor's Letter — Baby Guide 2015

February 12, 2015
By Betsy Bethel - OV Parent Editor ( , OVParent

After 10 years on the job at OV Parent, this is still my favorite issue of the year. The Baby Guide is a bright spot in the bleak, gray-brown landscape of an Ohio Valley winter!

Between these covers I hope you will find all kinds of useful information as you prepare for and nurture the new little light in your own lives, whether it's your first, third or fifth.

I am amazed at all that has changed since my 8-year-old daughter was a newborn: the cloth diaper comeback, apps for everything from tracking milestones to feeding schedules to exercise plans. There has been an explosion of social media sites, leading to a backlash in which people are creating cocoons of privacy for their families while still sharing special moments via apps such as Tinybeans and Tweakaboo.

Article Photos

Holding newborn Braelynn, my great-niece, daughter of Bryce Helms and Danica Breiding.

My friends have helped me stay abreast of the trends, and I am thankful they have allowed me to get my "baby fix" from time to time. There is no joy equal to holding a new baby in your arms! And as you can see from the photo below, our family has welcomed a new generation to the world, my great-niece Braelynn Helms, who arrived on Dec. 31.

Caring for a baby is an exciting and wondrous adventure, but it also can be downright exhausting. Being a parent is hard. To quote from "The Princess Bride": "Anyone who says differently is selling something."

Every new parent needs support. That's what I love most about Facebook, the instant connection you can have to a hand-selected group of people who truly care. In addition to the OV?Parent page, I have started two closed groups, Parent Peers and Parents of Tweens, specifically for local parents. Ask to join! There are other local FB groups, too, and many face-to-face support groups, including MOPS and La Leche League.

Here are a few more bits of advice from me:

You can't spoil a newborn! Babies are meant to be held.

Drive-thrus and full-service gas stations are your friends!

Although natural, breastfeeding does not always come naturally. If necessary, enlist the help of a lactation consultant or local support group.

If the crying is getting to you, it's OK to walk away. (Make sure Baby is in a safe place.) Never shake a baby.

Your baby is not behaving "at" you or trying to make your life miserable. It's not about your needs, but his or hers.

And tape this one to your bedroom mirror: "When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on!" ~ Franklin D. Roosevelt



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