Baby at 15 months, here is what I have learned

15 months copyright (c) Paul King and theITbaby

I’m not going to claim to have the definitive user’s guide to the child-rearing experience. Such claims are bullshit and lead to you not reading the freaking book end to end only to discover your child is absolutely nothing like the obscure abstract “baby” that is in child-rearing manuals.

My experiences at 15 months are mine, maybe they’re yours, this is what I’ve learned and some of what to do. I seem to have mixed the two up somewhere along the line.

  • If one of you is staying at home with the baby some times, make sure you either have a couple of strollers or leave the stroller as part of your morning routine.
  • Blackout curtains are a must if you want your baby to sleep past the tainted ass crack of dawn.
  • Have a lot of extra pacifiers, a baby can lose them faster than the baby can lose her temper.
  • Some babies prefer a specific brand, ours only seems to like MAM pacifiers, find it and stick to that brand.
  • If you have the option, get glow-in-the-dark pacifiers. Even if they don’t glow well, you’ll still be able to locate them in a blacked out baby room in the dark.
  • Keep pacifiers, snacks, things that are required for the baby to go to sleep, in the same place all the time. This way when the other parent needs them they haven’t moved. Moving things means searching for things with a screaming infant.
  • Pacifiers are useful, and can be used as a calming tool. you don’t have to have a pacifier addict to have them, and theoretically they can help with breathing when a baby refuses to sleep on her back.
  • No amount of sterilizing bottles will defeat the germs a baby will pick up in 20 seconds when given the opportunity. You can sterilize until your hands crack, and then your baby will grab a cat my the ass and lick her fingers.
  • Do not expect to eat with baby. One of you can eat, then the other, but baby will become a butthead. This makes dining out a dual-solo operation and just isn’t worth it.
  • Half of the things people think are serious risks to a baby are things your baby is going to want. Figure out what’s a real hazard and what’s a potential and remember these change with awake times, age, etc. Take away the knife set when baby is sleeping.
  • Baby gates go at the first point a baby could get to on the stairs. This means at the bottom if the baby is downstairs, or at the top if the baby is upstairs. We didn’t make this mistake, but I’ve heard about it.
  • Rear-facing is a lot better. It’s not a marketing gimmick. Keep them babies faced backwards as long as you can.
  • Some babies want to be warm, some babies are polar babies. You’ll figure that out, and so will your child as they grow.
  • Those little doll heads with the silk non-bodies that look like a handkerchief with a head sewn on are amazing. I don’t know what they’re called but my baby pets it… I imagine her thoughts “my precious… my precious.”
  • That jumper battery/tire inflator I recommend has gotten eight uses in this amount of time. Twice as an emergency phone charger, twice to inflate tires that seriously needed it, twice to inflate sleeping mattress, twice to jump a dead battery. It’s worth it.
  • Play lots of music until you find what your baby likes. Ours doesn’t particularly care for “baby” music but likes Zeppelin and Willie’s Roadhouse.
  • Keep a baby outfit, diapers, bottle, water, and dry formula in each car the baby might be in. You’ll eventually need it.
  • Keep the above sized to your child. Keep in mind that means every three months or so changing that out.
  • Remember when contemplating advice on vaccinations from nurses who claim to have watched children regress post-vaccine, that this is not a doctor and that correlation is not causation.
  • Also if you’re not particularly inclined to believe in vaccination, take a look at infant mortality rates in the US pre and post vaccination.
  • A parent mentioning they’re tired probably means they are extremely tired and you should realize their cognitive abilities are probably impaired.
  • Shoes are useless for babies and mostly useless for toddlers.
  • If a baby can cruise around a couch comfortably, they’re probably ok even if they’re behind on the actual walking portion. Some babies just don’t want to walk.
  • You’re the #1 thing keeping your baby safe in a car. Work on you and your skills before you depend on a $4 piece of plastic you purchased for $350.
  • No amount of expecting a baby to do something will make the baby do anything. You can cheer her on, but she’s going to do what she wants, when she wants.
  • Camping can be fun, camping can also be hell.
  • Having a multi-tool isn’t something you think you would need for a baby, but you do more than you’d expect.
  • Small cheap ass LED flashlights are great baby toys. Little plastic ones I can’t find anywhere except a Dollar Tree or similar. Light lasts a long long time, they don’t weigh much so if baby drops it on head it doesn’t hurt.
  • Whatever room you spend time in with the baby is a war zone.
  • You will get angrier than you’ve ever been in your life at something.
  • You’ll look back at pictures and remember when your baby was that little and then you’ll realize those pictures are only a couple of months old.
  • You’ll start to notice a trend that when one baby blogger ends up at Disney World, several other mysteriously do too within a week or two, and then a couple of your prime time shows somehow revolve around a good trip to Disney World.
  • You also start to figure out which bloggers are paid shills.
  • You discover and immediately hate Caillou, your baby acts like Caillou is the source of all secrets eternal.
  • You have learned that “no screens” mantra was designed for the parents who used that as a primary pacification method, and that as long as you’re not ignoring your child a few minutes of baby news isn’t going to lead them to a life of crackwhoring.
  • You realize from the happy birthday cards on Sprout involving one and two year olds that a lot of people subscribe to that philosophy.
  • You have had, and lost, a favorite Sprout host.
  • You drive slightly slower.
  • You’ve learned that a cardboard box is a baby fort and start planning your child’s castle within the confines of wanting to not lose any more house space.
  • Idiots on the internet will tell you you’re wrong for doing anything. Here’s the test: Is your baby alive? Check. Is your baby happy? Check. Is your baby healthy? Check. Are you doing anything to harm your baby? Uncheck. Give a fuck about what some stranger on the internet says? uncheck.
  • If someone has three blog entries a day about their kid at 15 months, they’ve got someone taking care of them for them.
  • You can never eat Cheerios again due to an “incident”
  • You hug your baby on a lunch break and then have to change your shirt, pants, underwear, etc. Upon returning to the office you still have something on your shoulder.
  • Babies save their biggest craps for when you’re in public.
  • Had to upgrade Google+ photo storage to 100 gigs for $2 a month.

Hrmm, that’s about what I have the time for today…