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Crib Notes: March News for Expectant and New Parents

Head into the spring with expert advice, gear ideas and more

Published on: February 27, 2018

St. Patrick's Day baby

ICYMI: Our interview with Dr. Dan Siegel

See a baby brain expert live!

Join us as we welcome Dr. Daniel J. Siegel of "The Yes Brain" on April 30 in Seattle. Learn more.

On Jan. 22, ParentMap was proud to partner with Dr. Dan Siegel on a Facebook Live Q&A about his new book “The Yes Brain.” Here are a couple of our favorite questions, and remember: We’re hosting Dr. Siegel on April 30 for a lecture at the University of Washington. Tickets on sale now.

What inspired you to write “The Yes Brain”?

The book was inspired by experiences my co-author [Tina Payne Bryson, Ph.D.] and I had with parents telling us about kids these days feeling very anxious, very depressed and very overwhelmed. In many ways, they were describing the experience of a threat state. 

[That’s a similar state to what you get] when you say “no.” A “no” gets you ready to fight back or flee or tighten your muscles and freeze or even feel helpless and faint. Those threat states of reactive “no brain” state are very different from a “yes brain” state, which is open, connecting, ready to learn and in many ways turning on the social-engagement system, which allows the whole body and the brain to learn and connect.

So that’s where we thought we should write a book just about how parents and other caregivers, including educators, can cultivate a “yes brain” experience for the children they help grow, develop and move into life with this positive approach to life.

You talk a lot about resilience in the book. What do you mean by “resilience”?

First, you really need to think deeply about balance: “How do I have a full range of emotions I can feel, a full range of thoughts I can have, and stay integrated?” … You can learn how to bring yourself back to balance if you’ve gone into a red zone of chaos or a blue zone of rigidity. Learning that skill is an important part of balance and an important part of well-being.

Now resilience is how do you widen that zone so that when life throws you challenges, you aren’t thrown into the red zone or the blue zone? It’s also about how to get back to balance so that even when things are really, really tough, I know how to bring myself back.

Resilience is something you can learn; it’s a skill … that can be learned by any child.

For that one time you get out of the house

Mark your calendars for the first Sunday in March. That’s the day the beautiful Seattle Japanese Garden traditionally holds its annual opening, including a Shinto blessing and kid-friendly performances. The garden’s a great place to take a stroll(er).

Gear we're gaga for

A voice-activated child monitoring system   
Billed as “Alexa but for your baby,” Lovey’s uses a digital mic to monitor sounds, detect crying and relay alerts. It also allows parents to “talk” to the baby monitor (e.g. “Lovey’s, how long has my baby been sleeping?”).     

A cookie to help with breastfeeding    
Booby Boons from Stork and Dove aim to increase breast milk production through a combo of vitamins, fiber, folic acid and pretty much anything you can think of that’s healthy. They’re also free of soy, gluten, wheat and preservatives.

A stroller in rose gold    
Because why not? Baby Trend’s launching a rose gold collection for their feeding center, nursery center and travel system, a.k.a. you can look stylish on the go.

A panty to help with C-section scars     
This underwear works for you, reducing swelling and minimizing scarring. It’s also high-waisted, which reviewers rave about. “Definitely recommend for all C-section mamas!” writes one happy customer.

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