Talk to Me Tuesday: Best Baby Advice Giveaway

Well, it’s official…less than three weeks until the big day.  You’d think, since this is my fourth, that I’d have this whole baby thing down.  Yet, if there’s one thing I’ve learned over the last eight years of motherhood it’s that you can never have too much good advice when it comes to managing your ever-changing family.

So, for today’s Talk to Me Tuesday post (sorry they’ve been a bit sporadic), I’m asking for your very best baby advice.  Whether it be survival suggestions for those first few sleepless months, tips and tricks for juggling busy schedules, or baby products that you can’t live without…I hope you’ll pass on all your bundle-of-joy wit and wisdom.

Pat-a-cake Baby Pic 1As a fun new twist for this Talk to Me Tuesday post I’ve got a great giveaway for you.  A few weeks ago I was searching for handmade baby supplies when I came across a sweet little shop aptly named The Pat-a-Cake Baby.  I was charmed by their trendy fabrics and ended up purchasing several of their perfectly packaged products.  One item I was particularly drawn to was their diaper diddie (TM).  It’s a clever little tool that tucks easily into your diaper bag and doubles as both a diaper/wipe holder and a comfy changing pad.  Unlike the boring vinyl versions you can find at the store, this diaper clutch is soft, thick and utterly adorable.

pat-a-cake baby diaper diddieThanks to the generous donation of Jamie (the stay-at-home mom behind the Pat-a-Cake Baby Shop), I’ve got a fabulous diaper diddie (TM) to giveaway to one lucky reader.  You can see more photos and read the full product description by clicking this link.  Whether you’ve got a baby of your own or you simply want to have a charming gift on hand for your next baby shower, you won’t want to miss out on this great giveaway.

To win, simply pass on your favorite baby tip in the comment area of this post before Saturday night (just one comment per person please).  On Sunday, I’ll draw a comment number at random and send an email to the winner.  The shipping is on me, so start thinking of your favorite baby tip now and join in the fun.  As always, to those of you that comment, thanks – in advance – for passing it on.

*This giveaway is now closed.  See following post for winner information.


  1. So cute! Did I not know you were pregnant or did I just forget? You’re only a few weeks ahead of me. I’m so jealous!

    I have a great tip for you but it’s too gross to post so I’ll just say that one of the best things I do is keep the baby’s clothes in my closet until they were old enough to dress themselves. It makes it so much easier to get both of us ready in the morning.

  2. I HATED going to the babies room for each diaper change so I find a stash spot in each major room (formal living room, family room, my bedroom, their bedroom, the CAR, etc.) and keep a some wipes and a few diapers stashed out of sight. This saved me when I had a multilevel house. I felt like I went up and downstairs enough let alone to go up an extra 8-10 times a day. When I purchased diapers I would divide the diapers up to each room as soon as I got home from the store.

    Now that my babies are a little older (2 1/2 and 9 months) I keep a big bunch of diapers in each of my bathrooms under the sink. One set on each level of my house.

  3. All my babies slept through the night early – 6 hours at 6 weeks and 8 hours at 8 weeks – what worked for us is not having the baby in our room at night. We put them to bed in a moses basket in their crib right away. Most people don’t agree with this I know but I had three kids that slept through the night, it was awesome!

  4. My advice to you is to TRUST YOURSELF.

    My kids are 8 and 6 now (trying to win this prize for my sister — no more diapers here!), and there have been so many instances over these years where I went with my gut with regard to my children, and I turned out to be absolutely right.

    For example, when my son was 17 months, he had absolutely NO words. No “mama,” no “dadda” — nothing. I talked to some of my friends, and even my family, about it, and they all said, “Boys talk later than girls.” “You can’t compare him with your sister.” “He’s FINE!”

    Turns out he wasn’t fine! I had him evaluated by an ENT — needed tubes in his ears. I had him evaluated by the county — needed MAJOR speech therapy (had him in county as well as private speech). Turns out he had low oral motor tone, and a host of other speech problems. Now, in Kindergarten, the kid still has some articulation problems, but he speaks in PARAGRAPHS with the most incredible vocab you ever heard coming out of a little boy.

    Point of the story was — I knew something was wrong, but was being dissuaded left and right from pursuing answers. TRUST YOURSELF!

    Wow. This turned into a long comment! Sounds like fodder for my next blog post!

  5. Although I only have one child I have taken care of dozens of babies in the past. For the babies that have a difficult time sleeping or staying asleep try using some sort of blanket wrap. There are many good ones out there. Kiddopotamus sells one for $10 at Babies R Us. I found these to be a life saver for my child and many other babies. It’s especially helpful for those newborns that tend to wake easily due to those little, uncontrollable jerks.

    Have multiples? Color coding can help. When I nannied for triplets we assigned each child a color. We had three aspirators, 3 saline sprays, 3 different Tylenol bottles, multiple binkies….you get the idea. Before those babies were born I used a permanent marker and sometimes nail polish to color code the different items. We also used a chart to keep track of diapers and feeding amounts for the first month or so. It’s easy to forget who ate what etc.

  6. i would say that although its easier to skip bathtime for 3 kids under the age of 4 1/2 years, its much better on parents, for the bed time routine b/c they exert themselves and get more tired, are refreshed, and comfortable after their baths. bedtime seems to run more smoothly after bathtime. don’t you feel better having taken a bath or shower before bed? its work but it makes getting them to sleep so much easier.

  7. I have one year old twins (and a 3 year old) and one of my FAVORITE discoveries this time around was the kiddopatamus bibbity rinse and roll bibs. Really, they are so much better than fabric bibs and they are way better than the regular plastic bibs that don’t really catch much and can get smelly. I use these bibs every single day (lots of times) and LOVE them!! (I found mine at Babies R Us.) P.S. Congrats on your newest little one!

  8. My tip is to enjoy your baby. Don’t worry about holding them too much, they are only young once. And, make sure you can get some time to yourself again once in a while and pamper yourself during those times.

  9. Hello! I love your blog. Very fun.

    Okay, my best advice is get a whole bunch of meals in your freezer ready to go. I recently had my fourth (3 boys and then we had a girl!) and having meals and meal starts in the freezer was the best thing EVER!

    I watched the sale sheets until I saw those big 5 pound chubs of burger on sale for around a dollar a pound. Then I’d cook the whole thing all at once and make it into taco meat, bbq meat or just plain with onions. Then I’d seperate them into freezer bags and pop them in the freezer.

    The taco meat works, of course, for tacos. But also many other recipes (Taco puffs–just taco meat, cheese and refridgerated buttermilk biscuits, Taco Braid–pizza dough rolled out with cheese and meat down the center and then the bread brought up around it…the braid part is hard to explain…) The bbq meat also good for the BBQ Braid and BBQ Pizza.

    Chicken Pot Pie filling freezes good, too. And one of my favorite recipes, Mini Cheddar Meat Loaves is great for the freezer. I made sure we had things in the freezer that just had to be unwrapped and stuck in the oven, too… frozen lasagnas, meat pot pies, fish sticks, etc. (easy cooking for my husband) No, not the healthiest food, but very handy on those nights when you just want to crash somewhere from exhaustion, but everyone else wants food.

    You could look over some of your favorite recipes and see if they would work, or if part of them would work for the freezer.

    My baby is 9 months old and I’m still putting meals in the freezer. Every now and then, when I have extra time at meal time, I cook a bunch extra and freeze it. This is so nice on the nights I have to rush off for Young Women’s (I’m a counselor) or when we’re just so busy.

    (Speaking of recipes…I started a yahoo group a while back that’s supposed to be for posting your easy and yummy recipes that your family actually likes. We need more people in the group to really get it going, so if anyone is interested….please join up! )

    Good luck with #4! I hope everything goes really really well and you make some wonderful memories! :)

  10. I have tons of advice, but I love what was mentioned baout trusting your instincts, plus advice is just a way of being a part of someone’s life. One piece of advice I heard and loved was always tke your babies socks off when changing diapers, inevitably you will be changing socks to as the baby kicks the pen diaper.

  11. Kristen

    I have really enjoyed your site!

    For diaper rash I am a big fan of Boudreaux’s Butt Paste ointment (I know the name is a little funny). It works like a charm. I usually only have to apply it once, and the redness is gone by the next diaper change. I also love that it has a “pleasant scent.” I have bought it at Target, but I know it’s available other places too.

  12. My best advice is to make reading to your baby at night an early habit. It is one of my favorite routines-and a little missed since my kids are so big now. Good luck!

  13. Tammy A.

    Congrats to you and your family.!
    My advice to you would be to invest in a great stroller. My little ones loved being outside and I guess it was the fresh air, but they would calm right down during those evenings when nothing would calm them down. Taking a ride in the car works well also. Good luck to you!!

  14. Congrats on Baby #4! Starting with pregnancy and continuing as the child grows, I begin a journal for the baby. It’s basically me, talking to my baby, but I write the events and how he/she is growing, gifts they got, trips we took. I just keep it as a Word doc so that I can quickly type a few sentences here and there. Then I just print as they fill up and stick them in a binder for them to have forever! Good luck and thanks so much for all your great tips!

  15. I have a 4 kids under 6 all at home. My baby is 3 months old. The last 5 years have taught me a thing or two. But I will attempt to narrow it down to my BEST advice.

    You are going to be exhausted for the next 6 weeks. Then you are going to be pretty tired for the next 12. Take it easy on yourself. Give yourself time to find your new rhythmn. My best advice is to simplify everything- meals can be scrambled eggs and toast. You don’t have to go to everything. You can skip most things. And this is very important, learn to say “no”, when people expect things you are not ready to handle.

  16. I love music. With my first child I was able to spend a lot of time singing with her one on one and teaching her music. Then my number two daughter came along and life got a little more busy. By the time number three came along I felt I had little time to spend time teaching music. I realized a simple way to continue the music. My suggestion would be to use moments when you would least think of singing and teaching music… during all that mundane housework. For instance as I fold laundry I will engage my toddler in songs over and over again. I really enjoy playing Baby Einstein DVD’s & many different kinds of music often. This helps me continue the housework and sing along with my child as we do dishes and clean. My youngest is only 2 now but can sing many songs even in the right tune. I believe that the music she has listened to has helped make her even more musically talented. While I am making dinner or cleaning and doing laundry the music helps me be more interactive with my three daughters. Any fun music that you enjoy would do!

  17. My best advice in this case is to move closer to family so they can hold the new baby while you sleep. :) Seriously, Mom always told me to wait to put makeup on until you are really ready to jump back into life. If people see you all ready they assume that you are back and ready for assignments. We love you and want to see pictures…belly and all.

  18. I just had my third baby last week. My favorite product is a baby sleep positioner. Here’s a link to one they sell at Babies R Us.

    All of my children have had spit up issues at night and I was always afraid they would choke laying down on their back. The sleep postioner will tilt them slightly up on their side or however you want them to sleep. It also snuggles them in with the two pillows on each side. I love my sleep positioner!!!


  19. Wow! such great advice. I have four kids …7½, 5½,3 and 5 months. Don’t let people scare you about #4. I believe it depends on the child’s personality and the personalities of the other children whether or not you will lose your mind! First, I would like to agree with the comment about starting to read to them early but continue even after they can read on their own. My hubby and I enjoy reading novels with our older two. We read “Magic Treehouse” books and “Illustrated Classics among others. I also keep a journal for my kids from before birth recording things that happen and my thoughts.
    My favorite products include: Boppy (a must, I have 2 for different places in the house). Kushies diaper covers ( kids tend to explode right up their backs even though we use disposables with “elastic waists” at the most inconvient times. We use these for church and at night. We also keep changes of clothes in the car and diaper bags. I also love snap front onsies with hand covers to prevent face scratches (I hate clipping baby nails, so scary) The snap fronts make it so you don’t have to pull them over their heads! (see blow out scenario above).
    My best advice would be to not forget to have “moments” with all of your kids. Baby smiles, cute “piggies”, and first words are gone before you know it. And bubble blowing, holding hands, going for walks, laughing over “sillies” disappear with your big kids. Having a clean house all at the same time is not worth losing those things. An lastly, don’t beat yourself up if you can’t live up to all of your own expectations, you’re doing better than you think! Wow, did I need to hear that!!

  20. Hi Maria!
    First off, thank you so much for the product review! You did a great job! Let’s see, I’m a first timer, but eventually we want 4 children! My best keep-the-baby-occupied-so-I-can-fold-laundry tip is to buy those Munchkin mesh feeders (Target $6 for 2) and put an ice cube or frozen homemade baby puree in them. My daughter just loves them! We call them her popsicles. The cold feels great on her teething gums, plush she is learning to feed herself and I usually give her frozen pear, mango, or banana puree so she is getting extra nutrients. They are also great for food intros. That’s my latest tip! Thanks again!

  21. I love your website and have been a lurker, but avid follower forever! Congrats – My baby #3 is five months old and I also feel as if I’m reading other’s advice for help. The best tip, one that puts life into perspective, that I have received is that before you get angry or frustrated, take a picture! This is especially helpful when the older children are trying to “help” and milk is all over the floor, or the toilet paper is unrolled for the millionth time. Pause, take a picture, and it helps lighten the situation.

  22. I’m a “lurker” also, but read your postings diligently! We must be due about the same time- I’m April 5th! But having a girl (my third girl, no boys!) I’m not the best advice giver when it comes to babies, but my advice would be to go by the baby, not the book. I don’t believe that every solution works for every baby. I remember before I had my first one, I was sure that I would use the “baby wise” method. After letting her “cry it out” one time when she was a month old, I knew that this method was not for me, or my baby. It just didn’t feel right. You’ve probably figured this tip out by now, since it’s your fourth!

  23. My best tip is to cherish every moment, because children grow up fast. :)

  24. When it comes to pooping, a baby will be no respecter of persons, clothing, bedding, carpet, or fresh diapers. When changing baby, do it quickly and always have everything ready to go, or you’ll be in for an unexpected mess. However, even when you take as many precautions as you can, disaster may still strike every once in a while. I was at my mother-in-law’s house the day before Mother’s Day. I was talking with a couple of my sisters-in-law while I was changing the baby, getting ready to go to dinner. I wanted to go fast, so I decided to just change him on my lap. I did everything right. This was my third baby, after all, and I knew what to do to avoid getting pooped on. I had a pad on my lap, the wipe was ready and the new diaper was open. I got finished wiping and picked up baby’s feet to put the new diaper under his bum ((very stealthily, I might add) when I got nothing less than a chest full of yellow goo. I could not believe the projection! It was truly incredible. I, again, have a new respect for poop and the damage it can do. Projectile pooping can happen at any time. Your baby will not care who you are, what you are wearing, or if you brought a clean shirt.

    If you do happen to get a little poo on your clothes or the baby’s, the best thing that I have found to take it out is a solid stain stick. In addition to being wonderful at stain removal, you can also stain-stick the spot before you launder, and don’t have to wash for a couple of days, as compared to a spray stain removal that has to be washed out as soon as you put it on, and with not as great of results.

    For dry skin or cradle cap- wash baby all over with dandruff shampoo. Amazing!

  25. What a great ideas- While I agree with Lesha in cherishing every moment… my tip would be to always reach out to family on the good stories. Most kids have aunts and uncles that will gladly do a lot of the things that parents sometimes get sick of (like surprise birthday packages for your other kids, and sometimes for you and your husband as well). Good luck on your fourth- I have several sisters who’ve said that was their favorite delivery.

  26. My best advise is put those baby bibs, and things with velcro in a lingere bag. It keeps the velcro from grabing and tearing other clothes in the wash. It has saved alot of clothes and blankets. Congratulations!!! I so wish I could have 1 more.

    Many Blessings,

  27. i know someone already said butt paste works best, but i’ve found that the original desitin is the only diaper rash cream that soothes my babies bums. i’ve tried everything else, they still squirm after i put it on, but with desitin, they immediately relax and you can tell it’s working. another bit of advice, i never had a problem with engorgement, but my friend did and says the cabbage leaf really does work. and yet another piece of advice, i always put the babies on top of a cloth diaper to change them, so if there was an accident, i could just throw the cloth diaper in the wash. also, i had a cloth diaper beside the baby (i have 2 boys) so i could grap it and cover them if they decided to spray me before i got the real diaper on. hope this all makes sense. have fun, and good luck with #4.

  28. i am in awe of thoses mums with any more than two children. Some days it seems like it would just be so hard, i have two kids a girl 4 1/2 boy 2. Both children have been sleeping through the night since 6-8 weeks old. My advice to people is to get a movment monitor for when you put them down for a sleep at night so that you can sleep when they do, the one i have used was this one
    there are others out there as well some even with intercoms as well. The other useful thing that you can even teach toddlers is a baby sign language it reduces the communication gap (tears and tantrums)and all the kids to get involved in teaching the little ones to talk as well. If you do a search for baby sign language you can many helpful websites, and this has even been showcased in movies “meet the fuchers” i think talking about going to the toilet. Lots of fun!

  29. Hi, I don’t really have any advice…my 1st is due in 7 weeks – so I don’t have enough experience to be helping people out just yet (I need them to help me out!) I totally don’t expect to be added to the “draw list” I just wanted to say that there is a lot of really good advice on here that I’ll be using myself, so thank you for inviting everyone to give their advice!

  30. Great giveaway – but don’t count me in for we’re now at the potty training phase (hopefully!). And since I’m dealing with a toddler, my best tip is that distraction is the key whenever you see a frown or tantrum coming on. A simple comment such as ‘is that a green bird’ works like magic!

    Oh, and I blogged this at my contest/giveaway blog – A Bookworm’s Diary. Hope that’s ok with you.


  31. Congratulations! I’m trying to think of my best advice,that hasn’t already been said. Morgan is now 1 and Kaylyn is 5. It’s hard for Kaylyn when Morgan gets something with “her” characters on it – like a Dora plate set. So we have made sure that Kaylyn has gotten stuff too. So I guess that’s my advice, especially for helping Emily adjust. I remember Jack at gymnastics loving on Morgan when she was just born so I’m sure he’ll be very attentive (which can be a problem in itself but I haven’t discovered a solution for that one).

    Another tip for when the baby is older – I just came up with this yesterday. When you go shopping, put the baby is a small stroller that one of the older kids can handle. Then the older child pushes the baby while you push the cart through Wal Mart. I had no wandering off and no stealing of my list by either of the girls. Kaylyn also felt she had an important “job”, which she did.

  32. Beth B.

    Get a good babysitter. As someone who is not a mom, but has spent a good chunk of my life babysitting, I can say that I know that there are days when I was a literal life saver.

    Sometimes it was watching all (6) kids while Mom went to the grocery store/Costco…not a fun trip with a 5,3,infant in tow. Sometimes it was staying the weekend while mom and dad took the baby for a few days away…big kids had a fun weekend and mom got to sleep. Sometimes, it means leaving the baby, and mom and dad taking all the big kids to do something fun.

    This is not stuff I would recommend for your average YW babysitter, but find a college student you like and start slowly with your bigger kids, and work up to overnighters.

  33. beezerswife

    I have 4 kids ages 9, 6 1/2, 4 and 12 months. I have a couple suggestions. For removing the newborn baby poop stains, nothing worked better for me than OxyMagic. I found it in a large rectangle (but cubed) blue box at Walmart for about $8. You just add a scoop to the wash to help give your detergent a booster, and it really works, even on stuff that I hadn’t rinsed right away. Just check before you toss it in the dryer, of course.

    The other idea is not necessarily for babies, but you can keep a file box (like for index or recipe cards) stashed with blank index cards. Mine is a wooden one from the craft store than someone decoupaged cute paper on it and decorated it for me. I keep it on the window sill in my kitchen. When my kids do or say something funny or sweet that I don’t want to forget, I grab an index card and write down the moment. Don’t forget to write the date and as many details as you can. Years later you can look back through it and even read the sweet moments to your kids when they are older. They love it, especially if they did something funny!

    Last tip, make your own baby food. It is so easy and you can think of yourself as “totally organic” but you don’t have to pay the premium price. Just cook a bag of peas or beans or a squash, etc. Then puree it in the blender or food processor. Freeze them in individual portions in an ice cube tray. When frozen, you can pop them into a ziploc bag. Then you microwave 1-2 at a time to thaw them out and feed your baby. You can add a little rice cereal if it is too runny. This works great for peaches, pears, etc. that people grow in their gardens too. Here is a website with howto’s:

    Good luck!! Sorry I got long-winded. I am new to your site and I love your ideas!

  34. Kelly L.

    I used to use Balmex faithfully with diaper rashes, but recently have been using an herbal medicine called Herbal Ed’s Salve it has comfrey root in it. It works like a charm. You can buy it in stores that sell herbal medicines and such. You can also buy a product that says it’s just comfrey root. I love it!

  35. My doctor gave me good advice when I was struggling with the fact that my daughter didn’t “follow the books.” She said, “There are three things you can’t make a baby do – sleep, eat, and poop. So don’t stress about it.” That’s my first advice. It has been invaluable since my daughter is developing very healthily, but does not follow the books.

    My second peice of advice is to let yourself feel overwhelmed. It’s ok if you need to go into your room for a couple of minutes to cry because you can’t handle your life (and just need to let it out) and it’s ok if your child is crying while you are doing it. No child ever died of crying – a couple minutes while you regain your sanity is well worth it. So cut yourself a little slack, especially early on.

    My last peice of advice is to use pajamas with zippers. They are so much quicker to get on and off in those middle of the night diaper changes.

    Good luck, Maria – and enjoy that new little guy!

  36. I admit this may be a repeat since I didn’t have time to read through all of the comments, but my life saver with my four(9,7,3,2)kids is a rigid bedtime routine.
    1-Change into pajamas
    2-Brush teeth
    3-Read stories
    4-Say prayers
    5-Tuck in with hugs & kisses

    With the older two all we have to say is “bedtime routine!” and they know what to do. We are reading the Great Brain series right now. They younger ones like the picture books, and rarely put up a fuss after they’re in bed because once the routine is finished they know it’s pointless.

  37. Meredith

    Something that really saved us money when we had our first child, and even more now that we have two, is to get a Costco card, if you have one nearby. On just diapers, formula, and baby wipes alone, we save over $250 a year. If you also regularly get your gas there, you save even more. Obviously, bigger families save more, but I was surprised how much we saved as a small family of 3 and then 4, just because we had a baby.

  38. Enjoyed reading some of the advice. My advice is something that just worked for me. I always took care of my older childrens needs before I took care of the baby. For me, it was easier to take care of the nagging children so I could be in (some) peace while nursing or changing the diaper. I like to think that the kids have always been good with the babies because of that.
    Good luck! It’s like riding a bike. You will be suprised what you remember and what you find most important.

  39. Bridget

    The best secret for diaper rash is athletes foot medicine. When my kids get a bad diaper rash I put Lotrimin (clotrimazole – store brand) on the rash first and then the original Desitin, to help it stay on longer, and it clears it up so quickly.

  40. I L. O. V. E. pocket slings. I make my own, but their are plenty out in the market place. They are so great for having two hands free for the other kids. I too am expecting #4 in a few weeks and I am looking forward to “wearing” him. They are also great for a changing pad in a pinch. Just found your site today…can’t wait to go back and catch up with your older posts.

  41. My favorite baby product-which I could not live without- is Burt’s Bees Baby Bee Buttermilk Lotion. I have been using it on baby, and myself, for the past two years. It is such a lightweight and yummy smelling lotion.
    My daughter never got kid zits, or dry skin. She never had craddle cap, or any skin problems. This lotion is my #1. I will use it for the rest of my life.

  42. Janae Lines

    When I had my first baby, my mom tught me this trick, it really works! When you’re trying to burp your baby, but can’t tell if there is a bubble, rub their spine. If baby has a bubble, he or she will jiggle when your hand passes over it. If they’re all burped out, nothing. This technique also helped my sister-in-law to burp her baby.

  43. Valerie In Florida

    Breastfeed. Then you won’t have to worry about newborn poo stains. They’ll just sun right out.

    Use cloth diapers. They are amazingly liberating and there are such adorable ones out there now. You don’t even have to worry about staining… see above.

    :) Val

  44. After 5 kids and 16 grandkids (and counting) this is still my favorite tip for regulating baby’s sleeping schedule: Between the hours of 10 pm and 6 am, the lights were kept to a minimum (night lights were best) and I did not talk to the baby in anything more than a whisper if at all. Of course illness was the exception, but this lack of nighttime stimulation helped the baby to go quickly back to sleep after eating and they learned to sleep through the night fairly early!
    Best of everything with #4!


  1. The Best Burp Cloths Ever | - [...] Want more great baby advice?  Check out all the fabulous comments from this past MeckMom post. [...]

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