Is there anything more adorable than a toddler who is learning to speak? Many moms feel that once their baby becomes a toddler, they can breathe a sigh of relief that the newborn stage is over and everyone is getting a bit more sleep and is a bit more adjusted. And moms definitely agree that toddlers say the cutest, most hilarious things.
It's both fun and rewarding to raise a toddler and help them become a kind-hearted and intelligent person. They're starting to notice things that they never did before and as they start to form more words and sentences, they make their observations known.
There are many ways raising a toddler is different from taking care of a baby, and it's good for moms to know what all of the changes will be like. Here are 20 things to change once a baby turns into a toddler.
20 Don't Talk To Them Like Babies
No one really expects to speak to their child with "baby talk" but sometimes it just happens. You're so excited about the bundle of joy that you brought home from the hospital and you can't help but speak to them in a new language (and maybe even a baby voice).
When your baby becomes a toddler, you definitely want to forget the baby talk and approach conversations in a more mature way. As Anxious Toddler says, "If you want to grow your toddler’s vocabulary, simply talk to them like you would any other child." This is a really great tip that moms can remember.
19 Stop Expecting Certain Milestones At Certain Times
S. Mommy advises moms not to expect certain milestones from toddlers at certain times: "If a friend’s daughter supposedly waved and said 'bye bye' at six months but your son couldn’t walk by fourteen months it means absolutely nothing. Love your child and his or her unique abilities."
It's easy for a mom to feel that their toddler should be at a different place than they are, but this doesn't help anyone. It's good to take this advice and feel pride about what your toddler can do and allow the milestones to happen when they're supposed to. They will absolutely reach the milestones, just maybe not when you think that they will.
18 Don't Say Yes/Give In Just Because They're Upset
We've all seen toddlers asking for a chocolate chip cookie, being told no, and then screaming while jumping up and down. Even though no one is a fan of a toddler tantrum, always saying yes and giving in so a toddler won't have a fit isn't the best approach.
According to Anxious Toddlers, "Don’t worry, their cute little egos can handle a firm 'no' – you will not crush their spirit or their love. You will foster a child who understands limits and who will respect “no” not only from you, but from teachers as well." That last part is important since part of raising a toddler is getting them ready to go to school and start their education. That includes helping them be well-behaved.
17 Keep Electronics And Chargers Out Of Reach
Toddlers absolutely are not fans of phones and any piece of technology. If their parent is holding a cell phone, they won't be interested at all.
Just kidding. A cell phone is basically a toddler's best friend. That's why moms will want to keep electronics and chargers out of their toddler's reach.
S. Mommy put it this way: "Hide everything. Everything. Phone chargers, remotes, phones, coasters, magazines, books, decorations lower than four feet off the ground – just get rid of them." Toddlers will be able to grab stuff much faster and easier than babies can, so this is something to keep in mind.
16 Let Them Crawl And Learn To Move On Their Own
Parenting.com suggets that moms allow their toddler to crawl and learn to move on their own. When a baby becomes a toddler, they will definitely start learning to walk.
Moms of toddlers should definitely stop carrying them everywhere and coddling them. After all, learning to walk is a really big deal, and if you're always holding your toddler, you're not giving them the chance to figure this out. Plus, a toddler learning to move around is super cute, so moms won't want to miss out (and these are really good photo opportunities too -- your relatives will want to see them for sure).
15 Make Sure They're Eating Regularly
S. Mommy says, "With toddlers comes food. Your little one will be eating a ton now, so stock up."
Moms will want to make sure that their toddlers are eating on a regular basis. This is great for mood regulation (and so they have enough energy to play and have fun, too).
This will be pretty easy since if there is one thing that toddlers enjoy, it's snacking a lot. Toddlers are really big fans of snack food since it tends to be served in small pieces and it's simple for them pick up with their sweet little hands. They love crackers and cheese and fruit cut up into small pieces, and moms will love seeing their toddlers eating.
14 Get 'Em Dressed Faster
One thing that all toddler moms know is that putting on your toddler's clothes can be a bit of an entertaining endeavor. You try your best to get that t-shirt on but they're squirming all over the place and it seems like the hardest thing in the world.
Mother and Baby says that toddler moms can learn to put clothes on their toddlers super fast: "You've become an expert in speed dressing……And pretty handy at the standing nappy change, too. Basically anything that involves putting on or removing clothing, because your toddler does not like lying down or standing still for longer than 20 seconds."
13 Change Up Nap Time
Moms know that babies nap... and they nap a lot. For the first year or so of your child's life, you might even feel like your schedule revolves around when your baby naps (and that's usually when you finally get to finish that cup of coffee that keeps getting cold).
Toddlers still need naps, but fewer than when they were babies. Once a mom's baby is a toddler, switching up nap times will make sense. The Tot has great tips for getting to one nap a day instead of more, and moms might find that their toddler needs only one day every day.
12 Have Toddlers Eat Without Too Much Help
According to Parenting.com, moms should have their toddlers eat without much help once they reach this age.
It might feel strange at first since you're used to feeding your baby. You might even wonder if your kid is old enough to feed themselves. It's good to remind yourself that they are and that as long as the food is cut up small so it's safe for them to eat, everything will work out well. Watching your toddler eat without you having to help them the entire time will make them more independent and it's going to be a really positive experience for both of you.
11 Switch To A Big Bed
Setting up your baby's room is a fun time and it's even better if you have an interest in home decor. The crib is usually the focal point of the room and what you spend the most time researching and setting up. You want a cozy place for your little one to sleep.
Once your baby becomes a toddler, you start thinking about when to get a bed since you know that they can't sleep in a crib forever. You'll know when this is the right time and this will be one change that you make now that there's a cute toddler in the house.
10 Begin The Weaning Process
According to Parenting.com, it's good to start the weaning process when your baby turns into a toddler.
As the publication says, "Around Baby's first birthday, you may wish to start weaning him off breastmilk or formula. For some babies, the transition to cow's milk is easy; they naturally take to a sippy cup without much resistance. Other babies have a harder time giving up nursing or the bottle. Talk to your child's doctor about strategies to make weaning easier on Baby, and you!"
This will definitely be a big transition since you're so used to breastfeeding and feeding your baby with a bottle, but it's part of having a toddler in the house for sure.
9 Tell Your Tot Stories
Pathways.org says that toddlers love hearing stories, so moms will want to tell their toddler a story and make that a part of their schedule every day.
Reading to your toddler before they go to sleep is a really nice thing to do and it's something that you both can look forward to. You can also chat with your toddler throughout the day and tell them a story that you make up yourself. It's amazing to teach them how to listen to a story and to appreciate books and words. This will absolutely help them love reading as well. And watching their cute little face as you read to them will be precious.
8 Give Direction To Encourage Learning
Pathways.org says that among the many things that toddlers should be able to do, they should be able to listen to something that their mom says and do it. The website gives the example of a mom asking them to get their coat and bring it over.
It's super important for moms to give their toddlers direction since it allows them to learn. You'll be asking them to do very small tasks, such as getting a coat from the cupboard or from the floor (since everyone knows that coats do wind up on the floor sometimes). Your toddler will be proud that they can accomplish these things, and they'll keep learning so they can do more and more.
7 Potty Train When They're Ready
Potty training is a really big deal and it can make some parents nervous since it seems tough to know the right time. There is all kinds of advice about what is the best age to start this process, but moms should know that they can definitely decide when they think that their toddler is ready.
Once you feel that it's the right time, feel free to potty train your toddler. This is one of the biggest things that you'll be changing when your baby turns into a toddler since this is one way that they'll become more independent. Get ready to say goodbye to changing dirty diapers all the time and get them a cute little potty.
6 Watch Out For The Climbing...
As Essential Baby says, moms will figure out really fast that toddlers can climb pretty much everywhere: "You realise that baby-proofing was a cinch compared to 'toddler-proofing'. Who knew that a house could provide so much 'entertainment' for a little person who has just learned to climb?"
Moms will want to fix the areas of the house where toddlers can climb. This could mean getting baby gates for stairs and putting baby-proof locks on kitchen cabinets and drawers. Basically, anything that a toddler can easily get to should be cornered off. This process can seem like a lot at first, but moms will love the peace of mind that they get once it's done.
5 Be More Open-Minded (AKA Chill Out)
As Dr. Gwenn Schurgin O'Keeffe tells Parents.com, not having rules for toddlers is a great idea. Toddlers are figuring out independence and that's what moms want to focus on.
Sure, when you're a new mom, you have some rules and routines set up because that's what helps you succeed. (Or in other words, it's what helps you feel like you have a normal life when you're yawning all the time and getting used to your new mom reality.) But now that you have a toddler, it's okay to be a chill parent and be open-minded. It'll be really good for your family.
4 Speak In Short Sentences So They Understand
How should you talk to your toddler? It can feel confusing because on the one hand, they're not a baby any longer, but at the same time, they're not teenagers so you can't converse with them in that way.
Parenting.com suggests that moms speak in short sentences so toddlers have an easy time getting what they're saying. As the publication says, "To help you understand each other better, keep your phrases short, repeat yourself often, and stay aware of your toddler's gestures and tone of voice -- especially important when he's upset. Even if you have no idea what he's yelling about, show him you understand he's angry, and go from there."
3 Stop Being Concerned With What And How Much Your Toddler Is Eating
Is your toddler eating enough? What are they eating on a daily basis?
These are questions that moms ask themselves every day, but as Dr. David Hill told Parents.com, moms don't need to be concerned about this stuff. Dr. Hill said, "As long as the options are good, children do best when allowed to pick what they want to eat."
It could be a good idea for moms to ask their toddler about their favorite foods, take them grocery shopping, and let them choose what will be for dinner. It might not go perfectly all the time but it'll make the whole family part of mealtimes and will make things a lot happier.
2 Help Your Toddler Learn Empathy
Parents.com talks about how crucial it to raise a toddler who cares about other people, and moms will definitely want to help their toddler learn empathy.
Sure, of course you notice that your sweet baby smiles at their grandparents or seems to like when certain people are in the room, but babies are definitely too young to understand a concept like empathy. When they become a toddler, though, they will start feeling emotions, and this is when moms get the chance to help mold them into kind, understanding people. If it's cute when toddlers begin to talk, it's even cuter when they show empathy for a relative who has come down with a cold or a friend who just dropped their ice cream cone or favorite toy.
1 Set A Good Example Since Toddlers Love To Copy
Moms know that if there is one thing that toddlers love, it's copying them. According to C. Family, if moms are cleaning up, their toddler will be right behind them, wanting to do the same thing, so getting them to help can be a really good idea.
Moms can generally be a great example of good behavior so their toddlers will copy them. If you're always polite and friendly and are a good person, then your toddler will notice all of these things. And you'll be complimented on how polite and well-spoken your toddler is, which will be pretty nice.