elevating child care

In Tune (Do Babies Need Music Class?)

As my Ford cruised through the canyon, it started to rain. My six-year-old son and I were returning home from a birthday party for one of his friends. It had been a sunny afternoon, and then suddenly dark clouds converged. A bold radiance dramatically backlit the clouds. Rain is a rare occurrence in Southern California. I had a CD by Coldplay on and the song “Swallowed in the Sea” began. After a minute, my son...

The Myth of Baby Boredom

Kiley holds up her head and peers around at the other infants. Her eyes stop and fixate on Chase, who is moving across the floor in an army crawl. Elbows bent and using alternating forearms, Chase propels himself forward towards a small, red wiffle ball on the floor near Kiley. Although Kiley had also shown interest in the ball, her attention flagged when she realized that it was beyond her reach. Chase reaches the...

Sleep on This

If I were to ask parents to rank the biggest challenge during their child’s first year of life, the answer would be almost unanimous: sleep. Parents want to know the secret to healthy sleep for their baby. Indeed, desperate parents will go to great lengths to remedy a baby’s sleep difficulties. There is a vast library and an extensive marketplace of advice available. Weary and delusional, parents will resort to...

Back to Sleep (Part II of Sleep on This)

Our ultimate goal is that our child not only falls asleep, but stays asleep, and since young children will awaken several times in the night, we want them to eventually be able to comfort themselves back to sleep independently. A child’s ability to return to sleep after waking is essential to a night of restorative sleep for all. Waking at night is a pervasive concern among parents for the obvious reason that...

Baby Manipulator

I have a confession: I’m not gushy about babies! Oh, I like babies very much, and I love my own children. But I have never been the type of person who oohs and aahs and begs to hold a baby. Instead, I find infants and toddlers to be interesting people and, perhaps because I hold that view, babies seem fond of me. When you respect an infant, he senses it immediately. Let me illustrate. I once entered an elevator to...

Set Me Free – Unrestricted Babies (And Equipment They Don’t Need)

Many months after becoming a mom I realized a shocking truth: we don’t need to buy every contraption on display at the baby super store! I had fallen into the trap of believing I needed all the technology that was available. I naively assumed that these products must be in stores because they were helpful and necessary, and no one had advised me to do otherwise. ‘Luckily,’ I found hand-me-downs from...

Lessons in Acting, Parenting and Life

My acting career was a white-knuckle ride. Whether I was auditioning for a B-movie or acting in a TV guest shot, I felt deep down that I did not belong in the entertainment business. Acting was not my calling. Rather, it was a lifestyle choice that by sheer chance had chosen me. I possessed only modest talent, suffered from a debilitating lack of confidence, and accepted whatever roles came my way. My insecurity and...

Good Grief

Loren needed to leave the room. She walked with trepidation toward the door exiting the RIE parenting class. But then she paused and she asked me, “Should I just go?” Since she had clearly told her ten-month-old Trevor what she was doing, I encouraged her, “Yes!” Seeing his mother depart, Trevor began to cry. I approached him and spoke softly. “Your mom went out. She’s coming back. You didn’t want her...

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