Welcome to the world! The smell of a newborn baby is one of the sweetest, purest, and best aromas known to humankind. Our newborn baby needs mom and dad now more than ever, not just for sustenance and cleaning up their messes, but also for comfort, smiles, and love.
Infancy is a time of wonder to be cherished. Cuddling, coaxing, playtime, and gentle, loving energies foster bonds of love and trust. Every day and in every way, babies need us to nurture them. With their needs satisfied, dad offers his baby the sense the assurance of safety and security, helping them grow with the confident expectation that all is well in their world.
Ever-observant, infants are mildly aware of their surroundings, soaking up life through sight, smell, hearing, touch, and taste. They possess one of the most powerful resources in the world: a newborn’s cry. As they grow, they learn how body language and the tone of their cries can be used to convey certain needs.
Babies tend to mirror a father’s expressions, cooing, cawing, and matching smiles, growing through observation and imitation. At about four to six months, they start reaching for objects and rolling over. From six to ten months, they can start sitting up, are able to grab objects, and start to crawl. As they approach twelve months old, many babies can stand unsupported and even start taking their first steps.
Babies need constant and continuous care. By embracing our role as caretakers for their every need, we establish a foundation of trust and confidence that dad is right there for them.
Whether breastfeeding or giving formula, good nutrition is vital. Every infant is different; a feeding routine or a particular formula that works well for one infant may not work well with another. If something isn’t working, their cries (and our trusted pediatrician) should tell us if we should switch things up. It is crucial to remedy any problems with breathing, choking, and vomiting, as these can lead to malnutrition and stunted growth.
Unless there are underlying concerns which call for greater frequency, infants should be visiting a trusted pediatrician at one, two, four, six, nine, and twelve months. With specialized training in child growth and development, a good pediatrician will provide us and our family with an in-depth understanding of how to best take care of our infant’s health needs.
Blankets & Toys
As infants grow into toddlers, they often fall in love with an item of comfort—a blanket, a stuffed animal—something for which they’ve developed an intimate familiarity. Babies also like bouncy seats, rockers, plush toys, rattles, shape sorters, and blocks. As we engage babies during playtime, we activate many connections to promote different skills, stimulate their interests, and shape their malleable young brains.
Our babies need us to talk to them—slowly, clearly, calmly, and with eye contact. Point to things, be repetitive, and show love while helping them learn about the world around them. During bath and changing time, point to the different body parts and help learn about their body. Young children understand far more than they can speak. By consistently introducing new and repeating familiar words, we fast-track their journey along the vocabulary learning curve.
While our baby isn’t ready to explore their spiritual dimension, it’s never too early for fathers to start introducing faith within our daily routines. Prayer, saying grace, and bringing our babies to church services all help establish the foundational roots of our faith.
Fathers Truly Matter
When infants wake us up in the middle of the night, or in the morning, smile and greet them with calm, confident love. Hold them close, foster intimacy through eye contact, and engage them playfully; each moment is another opportunity to strengthen the bond we are building with our beautiful baby.
They will only be infants once. In just twelve months, we go from cutting their umbilical cord to seeing them stand, hearing them speak, and witnessing them transform from infants to toddlers. Be there, be aware, and try not to blink.
Everybody sing along—because it’s time to do-si-do in the barnyard with a high-spirited animal crew! Extra-big, extra-fat, and extra-fun, Barnyard Dance! features lively rhyming text and a die-cut cover that reveals the wacky characters inside.
For generations, Pat the Bunny has been creating special first-time moments between parents and their children. One of the best-selling children’s books of all time, this classic touch-and-feel book offers babies a playful and engaging experience, all the while creating cherished memories that will last a lifetime.
There is always enough room on your child’s bookshelf for this Classic Board Book edition of the rollicking alphabet chant that has been a children’s favorite for over thirty years! A told B, and B told C, “I’ll meet you at the top of the coconut tree.”
“Good night, Gorilla,” says the zookeeper. But mischievous Gorilla isn’t quite ready to go to sleep. He’d rather follow the zookeeper on his rounds and let all of the other animals out of their cages. Practically wordless yet full of expressive art and hilarious, adorable detail, this book is sure to become a beloved part of children’s own bedtime rituals.
This classic bedtime story is just right for winding down the day as a joyful, silly group of animals scrub scrub scrub in the tub, brush brush brush their teeth, and finally rock rock rock to sleep. “The day is done, they say good night, and somebody turns off the light.”
Little ones are sure to love lifting the sturdy flaps to discover farm animals as they travel through the barnyard in search of eggs for breakfast. With bright, bold artwork, a catchy refrain, and a host of furry farm-dwelling friends, Oh Dear! is a must-have for every child’s bookshelf.
Darkness is falling everywhere and little ones are getting sleepy, feeling cozy, and being tucked in. It’s time for a wide yawn, a big hug, and a snuggle under the covers–sleep tight! With beautifully and soothingly repetitive text, each painting conveys warmth, safety, and affection.
Adorable babies play peekaboo in this delightful interactive book, perfectly designed for parents and children to share.
A big happy frog, a plump purple cat, a handsome blue horse, and a soft yellow duck parade across the pages of this delightful book. Children will immediately respond to these boldly colored collages, singsong text, and the unforgettable images of these endearing animals.
Your little one will soon learn some essential first words and pictures with this bright board book. There are 100 color photographs to look at and talk about, and 100 simple first words to read and learn, too. The pages are made from tough board for hours of fun reading, and the cover is softly padded for little hands.
Letters come alive on the page as Dr. Seuss fills the alphabet with his classic colorful characters. Starting with the most basic building blocks of language, Dr. Seuss makes reading FUN!
In this classic of children’s literature, the quiet words and the gentle, lulling illustrations combine to make a perfect book for the end of the day.
An endearing story of unconditional love. As baby giraffe grows and embarks on many adventures, momma giraffe consistently tells her to “Remember—I will always love you.”
PLEASE NOTE: As an Amazon Associate, Fathers Truly Matter earns from qualifying purchases. The information in this post should not be construed as providing specific psychiatric, psychological, or medical advice, but rather to offer readers information to better understand the lives and health of themselves and their children. It is not intended to provide an alternative to professional treatment or to replace the services of a physician, psychiatrist, or psychotherapist. Some of the information in this post was inspired by Kristen Ivy and Reggie Joiner and Parenting Your New Baby available on www.parentcuestore.org.