Jacque Miller is an adjunct instructor at Eastern New Mexico University – Roswell and teaches political science courses. She lives in southeast New Mexico with her husband and 22 month old son. Thanks for your great insights, Jacque!
After having kids, what product can you not live without?
Our Motorola video monitor. Our son slept in his crib at night starting with his second night home so that monitor was our lifeline to him at night.
What was the best kid friendly vacation or day trip you’ve been on recently?
We have travelled quite a bit with our son and the best trip to date was renting a beach house in Galveston, TX. It was not the nicest beach but having an oceanfront beach house was by far the most convenient way to get beach time in with a baby/toddler. Having access to a shower for getting sand off and being close to his crib for nap times was essential. We even found a baby equipment rental place that delivered toys and a high chair to the beach house for us.
What tools do you use to track your child’s milestones? (ex. baby book, notebook, spreadsheet, etc.)
Well before BabyPage I did not really track milestones in a useful way. A friend got us a “Block to Grow On” which is a piggy bank that has spots to record your baby’s monthly growth and a few milestones, so we used that. Otherwise, I had to rely on Facebook and Instagram posts as records for milestone achievements. So not an ideal system….Thank goodness for BabyPage, I plan on using that from day one for baby #2.
What are your kids’ favorite books right now?
Our son loves Goodnight, Goodnight Construction Site.
What is your child’s favorite activity right now?
Going to the park.
What’s a really useful product that you don’t see on a lot of registries?
A NoseFrida, the idea is a little gross but it is by far the best nasal aspirator we have tried.
Do you love your stroller and/or baby carrier, and would you recommend it?
I am a stroller mom. I used my baby carrier once. We have two strollers: the Uppababy Vista and the Maclaren Quest. The Uppababy was our first stroller and it is great but we found it was a little bulky for airport travel. We purchased the Maclaren primarily for travel but use it most of the time now. The one handed fold has been very handy when we are boarding a plane and I am holding our toddler, a huge diaper bag, and trying to fold our stroller to gate check.
What is your kid’s favorite toy right now?
He got a Plasma car for Christmas this year and right now that seems to be his favorite. He loves to cruise around the house on that car.
What is something about having kids that you didn’t expect you would love?
Running around with him outside. As an adult with an office job or a teaching job I feel like I never spent anytime outside. Now I get to chase my toddler across the park, soak up sun and it is perfect (unless of course one of us falls).
What advice would you give to first time moms?
My advice would be to put the parenting books down. The first few sleep-deprived months of my son’s life I spent my “free” time reading parenting books and stressing about all of the options and all the ways I could mess our kid up. After a few months I resolved to stop reading those books and I have been a lot happier since. I still consult a book or online source when necessary but I do not spend what little free time I have reading all the options for parenting styles, sleep training, and feeding. We try to just see what works for us (as best we can).