The Best Child Proofing Advice You’ll Ever Get

baby-standing-child-proofing-tips

Regardless of whether you are remodeling or building a new home, you need to pay attention to making it safe for your children. If you do not have children, you never know when you will plan to start a family. It may be a little too much at a later stage. On the other hand, if you have not been able to pay attention to child safety before and are now planning to start a family, the following advice will help in creating a safe environment for your child.

Childproofing your home revolves around preventing harm to the child from falls, burns, poisoning and drowning.

Complete Childproofing Solutions

Falls: Preventing harm from falls may be from the baby falling or something falling on the baby. Your baby may fall off the stairs in a double-story setting or fall from an open window.

  • Think about installing a wall-mounted child safety gate at the top landing of the stairway. Keep in mind that pressure gates work well for bottom landings but are not advisable for the top of stairways.
  • Window screens are for air flow and not for preventing the child from falling. Install guards or safety nets for child protection.
  • Ensure that there is adequate lighting along walkways to prevent the child from falling while walking. Hitting a table or a shoe lying on the floor may mean a small bruise for your child or it may result in a serious head injury.
  • Secure sharp corners of tables, cabinets and other furniture with guards or bumpers to minimize hurt from bumps and falls.
  • Ensure that all appliances on tables and countertops are firmly secured so that they do not fall and lead to accidents.

Burns: Your child can be severely burnt in the bath should water temperature rise above 120 degrees Fahrenheit. Never leave your child alone in a bathroom. For preventing accidental entry, install door locks or door knob covers. You need to do the same for the kitchen. Take care while cooking and do not let your baby crawl in unnoticed.

Poisoning: To prevent accidental poisoning, you need to install child safety locks on all cabinets and drawers where you keep the following:

  • Medicines
  • Cleaning supplies
  • Chemicals
  • Perfumes
  • Soaps and other toiletries

Drowning: Small children can drown in water only 2 inches deep. In addition to locks on bathroom doors, opt for toilet locks to prevent accidental drowning. If you have a swimming pool, restrict entry by installing a child safety gate at the opening leading to it. Your child is going to grow faster than you think. It is better that you install a wall-mounted safety gate right from the beginning.

While this covers most of the child proofing measures required for making your home safe for your growing child, nothing can be considered foolproof as far as children are concerned. However, these will go a long way to ensure a safe home environment for your child.

Baby Proofing the Dangers in Your Home

One would think that the house is a safe haven for everyone, and it is the place where you turn to so that you can relax and rest. However, that is definitely not the case for your twin babies unless you have taken adequate pains to baby proof your house. Baby proofing requires a fair amount of planning and implementation and, if done well, in time can help you spend the time with your children after they are born. For first-time parents, baby proofing poses a great challenge because they have no idea what babies are capable of. And, when all is said and done, it is difficult to envisage the world from the point of two six-month-olds.

Thinking of Baby Proofing Ideas

The best way to think of the potential areas that need to be taken care of in the house is to get down on your knees and look around. Doing so will give you an idea of how the world appears to crawling six-month-olds. Another aspect that you should remember is that babies are looking at everything for the first time, and it is obvious and natural that they should be curious and inquisitive about each and every thing that they see. While you should allow constructive exploration, keeping everything potentially dangerous out of bounds is required.

Checklist of Potential Baby Proofing Dangers

Some things that you should watch out for include:

Garbage can — The trash can is extremely enticing for babies. It seems like a magic box that Mom opens, and then the thing in Mom’s hand vanishes and disappears into the magic box. The fact that it is all getting accumulated at the bottom to be thrown away later is something that babies do not realize. Curiosity about where the stuff is really going attracts babies, and when they do find out what lies beneath, even then the trash can continues to hold some attraction. Keep it inside a cabinet that is latched so that access is restricted.

Dog food bowl — This is one area that most parents forget to take care of. Dog food is meant for the dog, and the last thing that you want is to have your babies trying to stuff their face with some Pedigree. Ensure that the place where the food is kept is secured and inaccessible. You can use gates or doors.

Medicines and cleaning materials — Many cleaning liquids and medicines tend to be colorful, and this is something that attracts children all the more. All cabinets that are low and accessible to children should be latched using child safety latches.

Sharp and small objects — All sharp edges should be covered, and decoration pieces that have some pointed ends should be kept away till your children grow older. Small objects that can be stuffed into the hold of a toilet roll should be removed from the floor or low tables immediately before your little ones get their hands on it.

Final Considerations

Make sure that you become a super-efficient detective to uncover all the dangers that lie around the house so that you can make your house a safe haven for your twin babies. Obviously, you want to ensure that all the hazards your children can face are eliminated before you welcome them to their new home. This can only be done if you have covered all aspects of baby proofing. To get insight into a series of proven methods and options, check out this website.

How to Approach A Parent of Twins

shopping-with-twins

You know when you run to the store and bring your twins along with you how people start coming out of the woodwork to ask all the regular questions, “Oh, twins? Boy, girl? Identical?” Then they usually follow up the question with some sort of comment that leaves your mouth agape. Well, I’ve always dreamed of handing out a “How to Approach a Parent of Twins” flyer. I never had the nerve to hand out the flyer, but in my dream world, this step-by-step sheet would be handed to every person as they reach the age of 18. Ideally, it would be a required sheet for graduation. They would be tested on how to approach parents of twins. My dream flyer would go something like this:

Don’t Make A Difficult Situation Worse

With the rapid increase in twin births, it’s safe to say that at some point you are going to run into a parent of twins (if you’re not one yourself). Here is the best way to approach a parent of twins (POT).

Pay Attention to What’s Going On

The first step is to take a close look at the parent with the joyful bundles. If the parent is not smiling and one or more bundle is crying, chances are good the trip is absolutely necessary and the parent is focused on completing the errand as quickly as possible. This is not a good time to stop and carry on a full conversation. If you can’t pass up getting a peek, try to do so in a way that helps the parent, such as opening the door. If the parent is smiling or seems calm and unrushed, proceed to the next step.

Think Before You Speak

The next step is to look closely at the bundles of joy before beginning the question phase. This is imperative if you want to avoid any sarcasm. Asking if they are twins is okay — hey, you never know if the parent is watching someone else’s baby or not. However, it’s safe to say that if they’re dressed alike, they’re twins. Asking gender is fine if the babes are not decked out in gender-specific clothing or wearing items emblazoned with “Daddy’s girl” or “Wonder Boy.” Asking if same-sex (and that’s key — same-sex) babies are identical is fine. Asking if boy/girl twins are identical will cause the POTs to wonder if you passed biology. Once you receive an answer on identical/fraternal, it’s important to note: do not argue with the parent. Trust that they know their twins.

Share the Love

Step three is to notice whether or not there are any older siblings. POTs get pretty irritated when one of their singleton children is ignored. If you see another child, do not ignore him or her while gushing over the twins. Make a nice comment such as, “Wow, I bet you are an awesome big brother.” The POTs will be happy.

Don’t Overstay Your Welcome

Step four is to bite your tongue. Refrain from asking if the parent did fertility treatments. You may get a nasty inquiry as to whether or not you’ve visited your proctologist lately. Also refrain from the “my brother’s, wife’s, sister’s, neighbor’s, best friend’s, daughter lives next to twins.”  POTs never know how to address these statements, but choose to listen in the off chance you may have inside information on how to contact Mary Poppins. A few other comments to bite your tongue on: “Glad it’s you and not me.” Twins are not a disease. “How do you do it?” Well, we couldn’t very well tell the doctor to put one back, so we did the next best thing, we chose to live by Nike’s motto and just do it.

Leave on a High Note

Finally, make sure that you finish on a high note. A pleasant comment, like “You have great kids,” “What a lovely family you have,” or “You are so blessed,” is always welcome.

Side note: If at any time one or both of the babies starts to fuss, cut the conversation short and move aside. The POT has only a few moments before the angels sprout horns and full chaos ensues.

Do Twins Have Super Powers? This Video Answers the Question!

I laughed out loud at the following video about twins and their superpowers! If you’ve always wondered whether twins really have their own language or feel each other’s pain, this clip will answer your questions. This video was created by Eric Ruhalter, author of The KidDictionary: A Book of Words Parents Need but Don’t Have. If Eric’s book is as entertaining as his video, I highly recommend it!

Visit Eric’s website at http://thekiddictionary.com/ for more information about his book!

Adjusting to Your Changing Lifestyle as Parents of Twins

It is simply amazing! From the moment you lay eyes on your newborn bundle(s) of joy, your life suddenly changes. How could someone so tiny and helpless make such an incredible impact so quickly? Babies have the unique ability to steal your heart, challenge your abilities, and can turn your world upside down if you let them. Having a baby (or two or three) is an absolutely wonderful change that will necessitate some changes in your way of doing things. As many seasoned parents have probably already informed you, your lifestyle will need quite a few modifications. Here are some suggestions that will make your adjustment a little bit easier.

Get Organized! 

As painful as this thought may be for the more spontaneous among us, getting and staying organized can make the difference between riding a tidal wave and getting hit by one. Not only will you be able to better meet the needs of your children, but you may even have some time left over for yourself. You’ll thank yourself for it!

Buy in Bulk

Take an inventory of non-perishable products that you are most likely to use. Whether it be diapers or everyday household items and foods, stock up when there is a sale. Eliminate those last minute dashes to the store to purchase necessities or forgotten items by keeping close track of your stock. Faithfully keep an ongoing shopping list on your refrigerator door and get into the habit of writing down an item as soon as the need for it arises or it begins to run low. When it comes to baby goods, many items such as diapers and formula can be bought by the case.

Keep It Neat and Easy

How do you keep your home from looking like a disaster at the end of a long day of devoting your efforts to taking care of your baby or babies? Take as many shortcuts as possible. During the day, soak dirty dishes in a tub of warm soapy water in the sink until you can get around to cleaning them. Use clear plastic tubs to store children’s small and medium sized toys. (Labeling these clear tubs with a word or picture will help children learn to locate and put away toys.) Use separate hampers for white, light and dark laundry to avoid sorting. Have designated spots for important items, such as keys, pocketbooks, checkbooks, and pacifiers. (Try your best to return these items to their set location to avoid daily scavenger hunts for them.) Organize your home to help make your job and your life easier.

Learn How to Say Yes

When people offer you assistance, say YES! Parenting, and especially parenting multiples, is a very humbling experience, so learn to swallow your pride and realize the physical and mental limitations of being a SuperMom or SuperDad. Even the most independent people need help sometimes. You will enjoy being a more rested and less stressed parent. Don’t be ashamed to ask family and friends, as well as trusted neighbors, mother’s helpers, school or church volunteers for a hand. Let people take your grocery list to the store with them (after all, when will you be able to get there in the near future?), run errands, feed a baby or two or simply just give you time to take a well deserved nap or read a book. Burning yourself out trying to do it all is simply no good for you or the little ones who depend on you.

Learn How to Say No

Likewise, it is important to know your limitations. If you are unable to entertain guests or attend functions due to exhaustion, tactfully let the party know that you would like to have done so under different circumstances, but you simply cannot do it at this time. For some people, learning how to say no takes time and practice, but it is a necessary skill to avoid burnout. On the other hand, try if possible to get out of the house regularly or on special occasions to refresh yourself and take a short break from the world of diapers and formula. Spending time with friends or family can be uplifting and just the boost you need to get you through the rest of the day or week.

Be Realistic

Especially difficult for the perfectionists and over-achievers among us is learning to set small and realistic goals. Your expectations need to adapt to your new and changing lifestyle. Simply taking care of your babies’ basic feeding, burping, diapering and comforting needs, especially in those early weeks of infancy, is enough of a daily challenge. You are not a poor parent because your house looks like a small tornado has passed through it or because you don’t know why your babies are crying. Focusing on overcoming those daily hurdles will keep you busy enough without having to worry about perfection.

Stay Alert for Special Discounts and Programs

Many baby companies and government agencies have special programs designed for parents of multiples. They can include anything from discount coupons to free supplies for baby. Don’t be shy about asking. Contact your pediatrician, check with local multiples organizations, call toll free baby company hotlines, check multiples magazines and inquire in retail stores for possible discounts.

NOTE: Take Time to Enjoy

All work and no play makes for a very exhausted and stressed out parent. Make it a point to regularly set aside time for yourself to do something you enjoy, whether alone or with others. Think of it as a mini vacation, even if it is for a few minutes a day. Likewise, remember that your babies themselves can be a source of rejuvenation. Sometimes we get so overwhelmed with the burping, feeding, changing regime that we forget to make time to enjoy playing with our children. There is nothing that can brighten your day like a baby smiling, laughing or cooing at you. Babies grow up before you know it, so why not try to enjoy every moment while you can? It is especially wonderful to leave the camcorder out and ready to shoot so that you can record little snippets here and there of your babies’ latest and cutest feats. Just taking five minutes every so often makes for a beautiful chronicle of babies’ first years. Especially after a long and difficult day, it is rewarding to watch a few precious moments of your little ones at their best.

 

Twin Souls Book Review: Message of Hope for New Millennium

When I first heard about the book, Twin Souls: A Message of Hope for the New Millennium, by Elizabeth Anne Hill with Catherine Mary Hill, I expected it to be one of those typical memoirs where someone loses a close family member and comes through the grieving process with a new perspective. In truth, that is only a very small part of Twin Souls.

Life After Death

Elizabeth (“Betsy”) and Catherine (“Cathy”) were identical twins, but their similarities pretty much ended with their appearance. They were opposites throughout their lives and argued about almost everything, including religion and politics. But then, on October 25, 2002, Elizabeth received the devastating news that Cathy, a United States Border Patrol Agent, had been killed when her Jeep rolled over while she was on patrol.

Despite their differences, Elizabeth was distraught. But, in time, Elizabeth realized that her sister wasn’t really gone. Her body was no longer there, but her spirit was still very much alive — and able to communicate with her twin sister. With Cathy’s death, a new life began for Elizabeth.

Cathy had been on a spiritual journey before her passing, and she began to show Elizabeth the same path. Through Cathy’s promptings, Elizabeth was led to just the right people, places, books and experiences that would ignite a fire within her to seek out the answers to so many of the questions that plague humankind. Do we really die? Does God exist? What does the future hold for our species? Why are so many religions at odds with each other? Elizabeth knew that her sister was guiding her to find the answers to these questions and share them with the world.

Twin Souls is the story of the Hill sisters, but it is also, as the subtitle indicates, “a message of hope for the new millennium.” Chapters include (but are not limited to):

  • Unity and Universal Truth (meditation, the spiritual eye and reincarnation)
  • Man-Made Religion (original sin, hell and the devil)
  • Man-Made Armageddon (overpopulation, poverty and the environment)
  • The Bible-Old Misunderstandings, New Insights (the Holy Trinity, Jews vs. Christians, the Ten Commandments, Creation vs. Evolution)
  • The Master of Galilee (the lost years of Jesus, who Jesus was and his purpose)
  • The World’s Teachers (the Ascended and Unascended Masters)
  • The World’s Messengers (our higher and lower selves, mediums and psychics)
  • Heavenly Helpers (spirit guides and angels)
  • And much more!

Other chapters in this in-depth book examine The Law of Attraction, science and spirituality, politics and ancient wisdom. No spiritual stone is left unturned.

Final Consideration

You may not agree with everything you read in this book, but my gut feeling is that’s okay with Elizabeth Hill. She knew she had a big task ahead of her when Cathy persuaded her to write Twin Souls. What this book will do is challenge your thinking and spur you to seek answers to the questions that have perplexed our planet and its people for a very long time. As Elizabeth notes, “our planet is at a crossroads” and “each person will contribute to the transformation by changing their own views about the world.” If you allow it, Twin Souls will send you on a quest for your own life’s purpose and convince you that there is hope for our troubled world.

Enter to Win! Chaos 2 Calm

by Susan M. Heim

Tonia Tomlin, author of the book, Chaos 2 Calm: The Moms-of-Multiples’ Guide to an Organized Family, has generously donated three copies of her book and accompanying CD for TwinsTalk families to win. If you’ve got multiples, you certainly have some chaos in your life, and this is an excellent guide for helping you restore a little sanity and order! I’ve posted a full review of Chaos 2 Calm here.

I have three copies of the book, so I’m giving you three ways to win. And, yes, you can do all three for up to three entries.

1) Post a picture of your little cuties in the TwinsPics section of TwinsTalk. The November Multiples of the Month, to be selected on November 1, 2008, will win a copy of Chaos 2 Calm.

2) Submit a story, poem, article or tip sheet for inclusion on TwinsTalk. Share your great stories or advice about raising twins or multiples and get published! I’ll randomly pick one submission to win a copy of Chaos 2 Calm.

3) Visit Tonia’s website at www.momsofmultiplesguide.com and email me with something interesting you learned about Tonia. (To email me, go to About TwinsTalk, and click on the “Contact Susan” button near the bottom of the page.) I’ll pick a third winner from the comments I receive.

The contest ends on October 31, 2008. Good luck!