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#99 Is Risky Play Worth the Risk? With Audrey Rowland

#99 Is Risky Play Worth the Risk? With Audrey Rowland

How can parents effectively balance the inherent challenge of safeguarding their children while nurturing their autonomy, particularly in the context of risky play?   In this episode, we have the pleasure of hosting Audrey Roland, the visionary founder of Green...

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#98 What You Say Matters: To Yourself, To Your Child

#98 What You Say Matters: To Yourself, To Your Child

Have you ever paused to consider the conversations you have with yourself, and how those internal dialogues shape your mindset? In this episode we talk about how important it is to speak to yourself with positive words and how you can affirm your child in easy,...

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#96 Looking Ahead to 2024 with Ann McKitrick

#96 Looking Ahead to 2024 with Ann McKitrick

What's the one dream or goal that, if achieved, would bring you the greatest joy and fulfillment in the new year?   As you think about the goals you'd like to set for the new year, remember that each step is a building block toward a more fulfilling life. Stay...

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#95 Navigating Holiday Gatherings with Kids

#95 Navigating Holiday Gatherings with Kids

    Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast #95 Navigating Holiday Gatherings with Kids with Ann McKitrick Ever wondered how to transform holiday gatherings into a seamless experience when kids are in the mix? Let's unveil a treasure trove of tips and tricks...

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#94 Year End Family Finances with Ann Garcia

#94 Year End Family Finances with Ann Garcia

 Curious about the smart moves that can boost your family's finances as the year wraps up? As the year approaches its end, it's more than a season of festivities; it marks a pivotal moment to assess and plan family finances. Engaging in year-end financial planning is...

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#90 5 Healthy Mindsets for Moms with Brianna Wilkerson

#90 5 Healthy Mindsets for Moms with Brianna Wilkerson

Which distinct self-care methods have proven to be effective in cultivating a positive mindset, specifically within the realm of motherhood, and what advice is provided for integrating these practices into one's daily routine? It becomes clear that cultivating a...

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#89 Dealing with the Fears of Parenting with Amy Weber

#89 Dealing with the Fears of Parenting with Amy Weber

How can parents effectively balance the wisdom of their own upbringing with the need to forge a distinct, individualized parenting approach that caters to their children's unique needs and personalities? In this episode, Amy Weber, a Licensed Clinical Social Worker...

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#86: 4 Things You Need to Know About Childcare

#86: 4 Things You Need to Know About Childcare

How does the 'Child Care Cliff' impact parents? Child care is a big concern for parents, and its cost and quality can greatly impact families.  Finding the right child care provider can be daunting, with steep costs and complex choices. I'll share the various types of...

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#83: Simple Ways to Create Mental Space Daily

#83: Simple Ways to Create Mental Space Daily

As a mom, the days often feel like a whirlwind of responsibilities and cherished moments with our little ones. However, amidst the chaos, we must carve out moments for ourselves, nurturing our well-being and finding balance in the daily grind. In this episode, we take...

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#82: Why Young Children Bite (and How to Respond)

#82: Why Young Children Bite (and How to Respond)

What are some effective strategies parents and caregivers can employ to help their children outgrow the biting behavior while maintaining a supportive and nurturing environment? Biting is a common behavior observed in infants, toddlers, and 2-year-olds. However, the...

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#73 – Setting Up Your Home For Learning

#73 – Setting Up Your Home For Learning

Have you ever wondered what to do or how to set up your home when you have other children over to play?  In this episode, Jeanne-Marie Paynel, M.Ed, shares practical insights and tips to support your child's development. Our conversation reveals the beauty of...

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#70 – Overcoming Common Fears of Parenting

#70 – Overcoming Common Fears of Parenting

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #70: Overcoming Common Fears of Parenting   In this episode of "Parenting in the First Three Years," Ann discusses the common fears and worries parents may experience. She shares a recent personal story of feeling fear and...

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#68 – What to Do When Your Toddler Hits Someone

#68 – What to Do When Your Toddler Hits Someone

 Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #68: What to Do When Your Toddler Hits Someone   In this episode of "Parenting in the First Three Years," host Ann McKitrick discusses whether parents should insist that their child says sorry when their toddler hits...

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#66 – How to Find the Best Childcare Center

#66 – How to Find the Best Childcare Center

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #66: How to Find the Best Childcare Center   In this episode, we explore the world of childcare and share practical tips for parents who are on the hunt for the best care for their children. We explore some important...

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#55: 5 Myths about Newborns with Deborah McNelis

#55: 5 Myths about Newborns with Deborah McNelis

   Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #55: 5 Myths about Newborns with Deborah McNelis   It's easy to feel lost and overwhelmed when it comes to caring for your newborn, but don't worry! Let me introduce you to Deborah McNelis, who's here to help guide...

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#51: The Benefits of Play with Dr. Stephanie Goloway

#51: The Benefits of Play with Dr. Stephanie Goloway

   Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #51: The Benefits of Play with Dr. Stephanie Goloway   What are the benefits of play, besides entertaining your child? Our guest today says there's lots more going on when you simply play and interact with your...

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#45: Wisdom from a Montessori Mom with Maranda Deason

#45: Wisdom from a Montessori Mom with Maranda Deason

 Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #45: Wisdom from a Montessori Mom with Maranda Deason In this mom story, you'll meet Maranda Deason, Montessori teacher and mother of 7 children including 3 under age two! She shares her thoughts on the cultural changes...

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#43: Attachment Parenting Explained

#43: Attachment Parenting Explained

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #43: Attachment Parenting Explained with Diane Goyette and Gabrielle Holt    There's a lively conversation on social media about attachment parenting and sometimes it feels like just one more thing to get right, or...

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#42: How Your Enneagram Type Affects Parenting

#42: How Your Enneagram Type Affects Parenting

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #42: How Your Enneagram Type Affects Parenting with Rochelle Bridges   What's your Enneagram type? I'm a 9 all the way, straight up. I have all the quirks and characteristics of this Enneagram personality type. I'm...

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#38: What to Expect in the Fourth Trimester

#38: What to Expect in the Fourth Trimester

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #38: What to Expect in the Fourth Trimester with Meg & Carly of Fourth Trimester Foundations The "fourth trimester" is the term coined for the first 3 months after birth. Those first weeks are beautiful, memorable and...

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#34: What Grandparents Need to Know

#34: What Grandparents Need to Know

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #34: What Grandparents Need to Know Grandparents, aunties, uncles, extended family all play an important role in your baby's life. Babies have a way of bringing a new dimension to families and learning what works for your...

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#30: 5 Things to know about starting preschool

#30: 5 Things to know about starting preschool

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #30: 5 Things to know about starting preschool Starting preschool is an exciting milestone for your child and will build a strong foundation for kindergarten. In this episode, you'll learn what types of programs are...

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#29: How Motherly Helps New Mothers with Liz Tenety

#29: How Motherly Helps New Mothers with Liz Tenety

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #29: How Motherly Helps New Mothers with Liz Tenety, Co-Founder of Motherly   Liz Tenety, co-founder of Motherly, gives behind-the-scenes insight on trends, what she sees as a big source of struggles for new mothers,...

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#27: The 6 Stages of Parenting

#27: The 6 Stages of Parenting

Parenting in the First 3 Years Podcast   #27: The 6 Stages of Parenting   with Ann McKitrick       Just as our children are going through phases of development throughout their lives, we too are going through stages of parenting as our kid get...

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Why your toddler needs to play with puzzles

Why your toddler needs to play with puzzles

  Why should you get some puzzles for your toddler? Play is essential for toddlers - it's how they figure things out. They need opportunities to play with good toys and materials and use their imagination. Puzzles fit the bill! They provide lots of learning - from...

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Can toddlers write?

Can toddlers write?

Can toddlers write? As soon as your little one becomes interested, you can give them some big paper and a marker to get them started. Learning to make a mark on the page is actually an important part of early literacy, which begins in the first three years of life....

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How to make playdough with your child

How to make playdough with your child

Making playdough with toddlers. We had a tray on the shelf with all the playdough ingredients and made a fresh batch about every 2 weeks. When I was a teacher, our class loved making playdough. We pull out the tray of ingredients and the kids would take turns dumping...

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Why you should have a tea party

Why you should have a tea party

Tea parties. We started them early on at our house. I think it started that time I spotted Good Mood Tea at Whole Foods. I bought a box for the next time the crankies set in. Because um, that happened often with three kids under age four. I bought it for myself, then...

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How to Sanitize Your Baby’s Toys

How to Sanitize Your Baby’s Toys

Do you need to sanitize your baby's toys? Um, yeah. Today I was scrolling through facebook and saw a picture of my friend's baby wearing a cute little outfit she'd made by hand. In the background their dog was licking a baby toy lying on the floor. This is why we need...

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What new parents need to know about loveys

What new parents need to know about loveys

What's a lovey? It's a blanket, a teddy bear or some other object that children attached to. They use loveys to comfort themselves at bedtime and in other situations where they feel the need for something cozy and familiar.  The psychological term for this is...

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How to choose toys for babies

How to choose toys for babies

We've got a closet full of toys upstairs in the kids room. When the grandkids are here, they spend LOTS of time playing up there! In fact, sometimes when we're FaceTiming now, I'll walk up there and we'll "visit" the toys and they get so excited! 😂  If you were here,...

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Pregnancy Cookies

Pregnancy Cookies

What’s the difference between a pregnancy cookie and a regular cookie? Do labor cookies really make your labor begin?

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Reading supports emotional development

Reading supports emotional development

Make reading a part of your daily routine. You’ve heard about the importance of social-emotional development in the first years. But what does that actually look like in the day to day? Social-emotional development includes your child’s experience, expression, and...

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How to read books to your baby

How to read books to your baby

There's not much better than snuggling up with a good book. It's one of my favorite things, especially when I'm snuggling with a child. 🥰 If your brand new to parenting, you may feel unsure how to go about reading a book to a baby that's so young they can't talk yet....

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How to Choose Books for Your Baby

How to Choose Books for Your Baby

When do you really need to start reading to your baby? Now's a good time! Early literacy begins early. Research shows that newborns are born equipped to respond to the language they've heard in the womb. They've been listening to you all this time and they love your...

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Tips for great sleep patterns for your newborn

Tips for great sleep patterns for your newborn

It's one of the first things people ask, "Is he keeping you awake at night?" (Um, yes he's awake at night, he's a newborn) This week I sat down with Joanna Clark of Blissful Baby Sleep Coaching to talk about sleep patterns for newborns. I asked her what you should...

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How to Choose a Day Care Center for your Baby

How to Choose a Day Care Center for your Baby

  Talk about adulting. This is it. Likely one of the first big decisions you'll make when you become a parent. It's a decision that will deeply impact your family, especially your baby. The folks who care for your baby while you work will become your partners in...

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4 Questions about babies and pandemics

4 Questions about babies and pandemics

Oh my goodness... I don’t know about you but it feels to me like unknowns of COVID are lasting a lot longer than I expected. As this all unfolds, new parents are faced with questions that weren’t even in our grid 8 months ago! Pregnancy can be filled with a lot of...

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Newborn Care: Q&A

Newborn Care: Q&A

Every baby is unique, and you are the expert on your own child. I do everything based on a career in early childhood education, coaching early childhood teachers and parents.

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Toddler Fun With Boxes

Toddler Fun With Boxes

Are you looking for fun activities you can do at home with your toddler? Learn about how you can use shipping boxes to create fun activities for your toddler.

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Feeding Your Newborn Baby

Feeding Your Newborn Baby

How do you know if your little baby is taking in enough formula in order to get what they need nutritionally to grow? In this article, I will talk about some guidelines to follow that will help you decide on how much to feed your baby.

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Labor Stories

Labor Stories

I love labor and delivery stories. Every story has the features of an exciting docu-drama — the inklings of early labor, the wondering of “should I call the doctor?”, “should we just wait or go ahead and go?”  The thrill of the birth and the flood of emotion that follows. Then the calm after the storm as everyone, including baby, begins the process of healing and resting up from the experience of labor/delivery and settles into the new life of being a family. One of my favorite labor stories comes from my friends, Glen and Laura.

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Bond With Your Baby and Help Them Grow

Bond With Your Baby and Help Them Grow

For many new parents, the first time they hold their tiny bundle of joy triggers an instant bonding. In the early years, a baby’s brain grows rapidly making millions of neural connections, so a variety of experiences and exposure aids physical, cognitive, social and language development. Read about a few ways in which bonding and baby development in the early years can go hand-in-hand.

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Why Do Toddlers Bite?

Why Do Toddlers Bite?

Do you have a toddler that bites others and don’t understand why? Learn why biting is a part of a toddler’s development and suggestions that you can do for when it happens

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Giving Toddlers Choices

Giving Toddlers Choices

Are you tired of your toddler constantly demanding that they get their way ? Learn about how offering choices can help reduce the amount of arguing.

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4 Ways to help your little extrovert thrive at home

4 Ways to help your little extrovert thrive at home

Social distancing is easier for some of us than others. Especially our children. For those on the more introverted side, they're delighted to stay home and hang with the family. They are content! For your children who are extroverted, it’s a little like torture not...

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Stages of parenting

Stages of parenting

I was recently in Minneapolis, hanging out with the grandkids. I get up there a couple of times of year - usually once in the dead of winter and once to enjoy their beautiful summertime.    One way I cement a long distance relationship with them is to have consistent...

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The secret to a happy baby (it’s you!)

The secret to a happy baby (it’s you!)

You are really, really important to your child.  You see it in the way your baby gazes at you, prefers you over others and cries when you leave. We know we’re important in our child’s life but do we truly understand this?  Attachment researchers tell us that we become...

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Meet Ann

I'm a child development specialist, parent coach and teacher trainer. I've cared for countless babies in child development programs, plus 3 kids, 3 grand babies and 5 foster babies! I LOVE babies and would come hold yours if I could. ❤️

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on the blog

pregnancy blog
baby blog and advice for new parents
toddler blog and advice for parenting toddlers
preschool blog and advice for parenting preschoolers
blog on child development