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  • January 08 1 | P a g e

    Dear Friends, There are only two lasting bequests (gifts) we can hope to give our children. One of these is roots; the other, wings -William Hodding Carter, Jr. This quote resonates with me as we enter 2008. Our children are our future. They learn from everything we do. They observe our every move and hang on to our every last word. As we review all we have done to help our children, ask yourself, In 2007, what did I do that helped my child (or children) learn the values I want them to carry into adulthood? In 2007, how did I encourage my child (or children) to learn new things? As we start a new year, this is an opportunity to reflect upon what you have done as a parent to help children strengthen their roots that will keep them grounded and encourage them to expand their wings to the possibilities that the world offers. One thing I love about the New Year is that it offers us an opportunity to both reflect on the past year and to set goals for growing in the upcoming year. So for 2008, how do you plan on helping your children become rooted while at the same time helping them discover their wings? This is a great time to begin thinking about your IFSP goals and planning with your Family Support Worker. Your FSW can assist you with every step of the way in creating those goals that will help your family and children grow to become what you aspire for them. At Healthy Families of Rensselaer County we are committed to encouraging and supporting you as parents in your journey of giving the gifts of roots and wings to your children. We look forward to working with each and every one of you in your endeavor to be the very best parents you can be. Our goal for 2008 is to provide you the very best support, encouragement, and education. We look forward to reaching this goal and thank you so very much for the opportunity to work with your family. Happy New Year! Donnamarie


    See the pretty snowflakes Falling from the sky; On the wall and housetops Soft and thick they lie.

    On the window ledges, On the branches bare; Now how fast they gather, Filling all the air.

    Look into the garden, Where the grass was green; Covered by the snowflakes, Not a blade is seen.

    Now the bare black bushes All look soft and white, Every twig is laden, What a pretty sight!

    Continued on page 4

    Volume 1, Issue 2

    SUPPORT REPORT Supporting Rensselaer Countys Parenting and Expectant Families

    Directors Note Sharing the Season Articles Submitted By- Shannon Leonardo & Syreeta Garbarini

    In This Issue o Pregnancy & Your Healthcare Provider

    o Bedtime Rituals: Best Bets

    o Winterproofing 101

    o Free Tax Preparation Information

    o And much, much more

  • January 08 2 | P a g e


    Infant Info Articles Submitted By- Barbara Biechman & Cheryl Kremer

    Continued on page 3Continued on page 3Continued on page 3Continued on page 3

    Pregnancy Page Articles Submitted By- Barbara Biechman & Cheryl Kremer

    Tummy Time Tools provides parents with ideas and

    activities to make sure your baby gets enough time on

    his tummy throughout the day, while he is awake and

    supervised. These activities include handling, carrying,

    diapering, positioning, feeding and playing with your

    baby. Increasing the amount of time your baby lies on

    his tummy:

    Promotes muscle development in the neck and shoulders

    Helps prevent tight neck muscles and the development of flat areas on the back of the

    babys head.

    Helps build the muscles your baby needs to roll, sit and crawl.

    Babies need tummy time because they are spending

    more and more time on their backs. In the early 90s, the

    American Academy of Pediatrics Back to Sleep

    program successfully decreased the incidence of sudden

    infant death syndrome (SIDS) in the United States by 40

    percent by encouraging parents to place their babies on

    their backs to sleep. Around the same time, a number of

    infant carriers that doubled as car seats and carries

    became widely used. This combination of back of

    sleeping at night and daytime pressure on the infants

    head can create a flattening skull.

    When a baby develops flat areas on the back of the head

    and possible the forehead, its called plagiocephaly.

    On average most of us women have difficulty establishing

    a relationship with our healthcare provider while having

    on-going appointments in the course of nine months of

    pregnancy. Research has suggested that women who

    actively participate in their prenatal care and in childbirth

    generally are the happiest with their birth experience.

    With this in mind an established relationship is helpful

    prior to pregnancy. Keep in mind that there are many

    different healthcare offices, asking questions may help

    you figure out what kind of care you could benefit from

    and whether the doctor/office will meet your needs as a


    Here are some examples of types of different medical


    Solo Medical Practice in these types of offices the doctor works for himself.

    Group Medical Practice -there are two or more doctors.

    Combination Practice includes both doctors and midwifes.

    Birth Centers- nurse-midwives provide the bulk of care.

    Its your choice of what you would like for you and your

    baby, maintaining a relationship with your healthcare

    provider is important for you to feel comfortable in asking

    questions or addressing any concerns that you may have.

    The best way of approaching your provider is to consider

    it a learning experience where you can learn ways to keep

    you and your baby healthy. It may be helpful to write

    down questions or concerns prior to visits, and

    communicate with the nurse that you have some things to

    discuss with the doctor/midwife that may take a little extra

    time. Questions, at times, may be embarrassing or may

    seem unimportant but, these questions will help your

    doctor understand how important it is to you to have a

    healthy and safe pregnancy as well as prepare you for the

    birthing process.

    Source: What to Expect When Youre Expecting


  • January 08 3 | P a g e

    If you havent already, nows a great time to establish a

    bedtime routine for your toddler. When you follow a set

    pattern every night, hell quickly come to appreciate the

    consistency and predictability.

    The more relaxed he is, the more likely hell go to bed

    easily and fall asleep quickly. Stick to your routine as best

    you can even when youre not home- it can make it easier

    for your toddler to settle down in unfamiliar surroundings.

    What you include in your ritual is up to you. Theres the

    standard bath, putting on pajamas reading a story and

    having a cuddle, or you can play a quiet game. Just make

    sure you choose something that helps calm your toddler-not

    riles him up. And while you can certainly start your ritual

    in the bathroom or the living room, it should end in your

    toddlers bedroom. Its important to teach your toddler that

    his room is a nice place to be, not just where hes

    banished at bedtime. If he gets upset as he sees you walk

    out the door after you tuck him in, tell him youll be back

    to check on him in a few minutes. In all likelihood, hell be

    fast asleep by the time you return.

    Here are some ideas to use in your bedtime ritual:


    Sometimes it helps to let your toddler get any pent-up

    energy out of his system before you try to settle him down

    for the night.


    One of the most popular parts of many bedtime rituals is a

    bath. Sitting in warm water is a soothing experience and

    getting your toddler warm and clean and dry is a great way

    to ease him into bedtime.

    Continued on pg. 5

    Often, this flattening is made worse by a condition called

    torticollis. Torticollis is a single muscle or group of

    muscles that are tight or weak on one side of the neck,

    causing a baby to tilt or turn to one side. The muscle

    fibers can shorten because of continued resting in one

    position. It is very important that an infant be placed on

    his back to sleep. However, it is also important to a

    babys development that he get supervised tummy time

    and constant repositioning throughout the day.

    The activities in Tummy Time Tools increase your

    cuddle time and contact with your baby and will enhance

    the time you spend together. Teach these activities

    become an important part of your babys day.


    Any activity that keeps your baby from lying flat in one position against a hard, supporting surface

    Anytime you carry position or play with your baby while he is on his belly.

    Beneficial to babies of all ages

    Fun, and it can be designed to be easy or challenging for your baby

    More enjoyable when you play music or give your baby interesting toys to look at and play


    Infant Info Continued from page 2

    Talking Toddlers Articles Submitted By-Brandie Bowman

  • January 08 4 | P a