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The Best Things Since Sliced Bread

March 4, 2015
Phyllis Sigal - My, How They've Grown , OVParent

There are so many new-fangled contraptions these days when it comes to baby care! Heck, back in my day, I walked two miles in the snow to change a diaper ... oh, no ... that's another story.

Back in the 1980s, when most of my friends and I were having babies, we certainly had it better than our mothers (disposable diapers, baby monitors, car seats), but these kids having babies now, really have some interesting accessories to make their parenting easier.

Even the inventions we were privileged to use have been improved upon. Disposable diapers have little lines that turn blue on the outside if the inside is wet. Baby monitors have video screens, so that not only can you hear your baby laughing, cooing, crying, but you can see her, too. And the car seats these days detach from the base and do double-duty as carriers.

But it's the applications on my daughter's and son-in-law's cell phones that blow my mind.

When Amanda sits down to nurse Norah Grace, out comes the smart phone. She tracks everything - when Norah eats; when she sleeps and when she's awake; when her diaper is changed and what's in it. You can track mood, activities, medicines and photos.

But one of the most useful tools is how it tracks trends. Moms, dads, caretakers can tell how many diapers Baby went through in the past month; what the baby's temperature is; weight, height and head size. Did she sleep more hours last week than this week? Tracking the trends makes it easier for Mom and Dad to figure out Baby's needs.

My favorite app, however, is Tiny Beans. It's the best! Mom or Dad can post a video or a picture each day, with the display set up on a calendar grid. Only those invited can view the photos and make comments. It's like being a part of Norah's life each and every day.

On one hand, I feel as if I'm with her, not missing a day of her life. On the other hand, I see adorable photos or videos and then I want to hug and hold her!

I wait and I wait - like waiting for the mailman to deliver a special package or letter - every day for the post.

When I'm missing her, I run through all the days of her life, and see how she's growing and changing. I compare her Dec. 9 picture to her Jan. 9 picture to her Feb. 9 photo.

When my kids were little, I'd take tons of photos. But when we moved from our Wheeling?Island home, I found a big plastic bag of film canisters in the back of the refrigerator. Never developed. Memories forever lost .

Now, snap, upload, share! Wow.

And you don't even have to write on the back of the photo when it was taken!

~ Phyllis R. Sigal is design editor at The Intelligencer and Wheeling News-Register and designer of OV Parent. She is the mom of Amanda, 28, and Leland, 26, and mother-in-law of Christopher, 29. And grandmother to Norah Grace Seidler, 3 1/2 months.

 
 

 

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