Toddlers

Baby wearing advantages (plus my favorite carriers!)

When I was pregnant with my oldest daughter in 2013, I had rarely seen baby wearing (beyond romanticized yet racist pictures of mothers from other cultures). But when I read about all the benefits of baby wearing, I knew I wanted to try it!

I bought a few different types of carriers, and I’ll be honest, baby wearing didn’t really work for me at first. But with a little practice, I got better at it, and three children in, I absolutely love baby wearing for all its cuddling opportunities (and convenience)!

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Sleep regressions (what I wish I’d known sooner)

sleeping toddler

Perhaps you’ve heard of the dreaded sleep regression. Or maybe you’ve heard, “the 4 month sleep regression is a myth!” and you want to punch that person in the face because your experience says otherwise and you are TIRED.

Note: The Evidence-Based Mommy’s official stance is against punching people in the face. Even when you really want to.

Regardless, something like this has happened to you: You and your child had gotten into a predictable sleep routine. Maybe he was sleeping all night, maybe he wasn’t (and that’s okay! No, really.), but you at least knew what to expect.

Then all of the sudden, his sleep drastically changes for the worse.


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Breastfeeding a toddler

When I was pregnant with my first child, my friend asked me if I thought I would breastfeed. I responded, “I’ll try it and see how it goes.” So my daughter was born, and I was fortunate enough that breastfeeding came really easily to both of us.

Disclosure: This article contains affiliate links. This means, at no additional cost to you, I will make a small commission if you click through and make a purchase.

At that time, I hadn’t thought about how long I would breastfeed, but I knew I wouldn’t be one of those “weird” people who breastfed a kid past babyhood. I had read that some people did that in this fantastic book (seriously, if you read only one book during pregnancy, make it this one) my friend gave me, but I was sure extended breastfeeding wasn’t for me.

Little did I know that I would end up so passionate about nursing and its benefits! Five and a half years later, I have tandem nursed twice, meaning my oldest and middle nursed simultaneously and later my middle nursed at the same time as my youngest. Now, I’m breastfeeding a toddler for the third time. This means I have nursed non-stop for over five years.


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Easy Valentine’s Day crafts for kids

little boy dressed for Valentine's Day

Valentine’s Day is in just a few weeks! My kids love making “art-crafts,” so I thought I’d discuss some ways to allow kids to be creative while celebrating.

Let me be up-front: These ideas aren’t meant to be Pinterest-worthy, beautiful masterpieces. The goal of these ideas isn’t necessarily a perfect looking keepsake for Grandma. This is more about allowing kids to have fun and to learn through doing (and maybe to keep them occupied for a few minutes so you can get something done or simply have a break!). I’m a big believer that it’s better for kids to do crafts on their own terms than for me to hover and make sure that everything is perfectly in place, so if that means that a googly eye is glued kinda wonky, so be it. I want my children to take pride in their own work!

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Why is positive parenting so much more effective than spanking?

If you’re a a late Gen X or Millennial parent, you’ve probably noticed that parenting advice and styles seem a lot different from when we were kids. Or perhaps it’s just that parenting advice is a lot more available now than it was when our parents had us (thank you, interwebs!).

Either way, times have changed, and there’s a lot of emphasis on positive parenting, gentle parenting, responsive parenting, or whatever you want to call it (and yes, there are subtle differences among these, but I’m just putting them together for now).

My experience growing up, at least, is that kids were expected to be kept “in line.” After all, the world works on the premise that there is always someone who has authority over you, and you need to obey that authority. One day we would be all sent out as adults, and we needed to know how the world works.

If you show up late, you’d get written up.

If you don’t perform at your job, you’d be fired.

If you break the law, you’d get arrested.

Therefore, it was imperative that we learned that misbehavior led to punishment, so we wouldn’t screw up too badly later once the stakes were too high.

Of course, this is only my experience, and it’s influenced by the cultural, social, and religious atmosphere I was brought up in, but I’m sure there are more of us who were exposed to these ideas. But wow, what a dismal view of the world… there’s not a lot of grace in this scenario!

While of course I want my children to accept responsibility for their actions and to respect others, I don’t want every choice they make to stem from a place of fear! So that’s why I’ve started looking into more positive parenting styles. I want my children’s actions to flow from a heart that is secure in love.

I want my children's actions to flow from a heart that is secure in love.

And as it turns out, science has shown that the way many of us were raised actually isn’t even effective! So let’s look at one of the most contested old-school styles of discipline, corporal punishment, and why positive parenting (or responsive parenting) is so much better.


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Is it safe to take antidepressants while breastfeeding?

breastfed newborn

There are several posts on this site about mental health and anxiety, because this is a subject that impacts so many of us, which in turn impacts our children. But we haven’t discussed a part of mental health that is unfortunately more taboo in our society: Antidepressant use. Since I want to focus on one of the more common antidepressants, I’ll focus mostly on Zoloft and breastfeeding.

I’ll be honest, I’m a little nervous to be talking about my own journey with antidepressant use for all the internet to see. But I know that when I was grappling with starting to use one, I would have liked to find an article like this. Plus, the stigma won’t go away if we don’t start to open up. So I’ll start with me.

And to provide you the most helpful information I can, I’ll also add in some of the science of how antidepressants work and how they affect breastfed babies. Heck, I’ll even talk about what it’s like to begin taking an antidepressant. (Side note: I am not a medical doctor. I have a PhD in chemistry and extensive education on people’s exposure to toxic chemicals, but that is not the same thing as a medical doctor and this post is not intended as medical advice.) Here goes…


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