My husband and I attended what was called a Crib Notes class (aka you’ve never had it been around a baby before – your screwed) a few weeks prior to our little guy arriving. It was a five hour crash course in parenting 101. Which really meant glossing over everything you needed to know as a first time parent.
Diapering – the woman running the course gave every couple a doll baby (the head popped off of one of them which terrified the mom who had that doll – I won’t lie I laughed at her expense) and basically told us three things: if you have a boy keep his business covered and point him south, always put the diaper on by putting the back under the butt, and to watch out for blowouts. Then said ok now everyone change a diaper! This is not what I would call great instructions for people who have never changed a diaper. Thankfully I had and that’s like riding a bike you don’t forget. But for my husband it was less than helpful. Step-by-step would have been nice oh and the “ruffles out” would have also been helpful. If you’ve ever had a really big poop diaper you know what I mean!
Bath time – here we had step by step instructions on how to wash the baby. Which was great until you actually get the baby home and again realize your kid might truly hate the bath! Actually we found out what he hated was having the tub near the kitchen window. Luckily we have a big walk-in shower and can sit on the floor and bathe him in his tub that way…only took us one bath time near the window in the kitchen to figure that one out (way to go us). Yes we sort of use their step-by-step method of bathing a baby, but we also learned you can give a pretty great bath in about 15 minutes if one of you does the washing and the other the rinsing. Also make sure to use a third wash cloth to cover up the baby’s bits…TRUST ME!
Car seat – this was great that we had someone from the police department to tell us about putting the car seat in and where to go to get it checked. Not so great was her telling us it should be done at least two months in advance of having the baby. Yeah, great too bad my shower was the next weekend. Little hard to go to the police department and ask them to inspect my invisible car seat. But it was good to learn that coats were a no-no in the car seat and that all those cute toys for the car seat handle were actually dangerous and shouldn’t be used – who knew?
We also learned that if you had a pet in the house let them get to know the baby unless of course you had cats. Because according to the instructor cats are evil soul sucking bastards. Well, that’s all we’ve got lady and you know what all our cats are fine with the baby. And by fine I mean the oldest tries to step on him, the middle one stays away from him, and the third sniffs him but otherwise cares not a lick for him. Though she does sleep in his co-sleeper like it’s hers.
The instructor also informed us that bumpers and anything else in the crib beyond a crib sheet were death traps waiting to happen and we were horrible people if we used them. In fact she told us she goes to the local baby stores and takes them off all the cribs. Hey at least she’s passionate about what she does right? Sure let’s call it passionate. But we did as she suggested and have nothing harmful in the crib. Which makes me a little sad because it does not look inviting at all!
In all honestly the only thing that we took away from this class that actually helped us was: how to swaddle a baby (lifesaver), all the safety do’s and don’ts, and the car seat business. Thankfully they had tasty snacks and we also scored a free turkey (it was close to Thanksgiving). Otherwise I feel like we could have done something more with our Saturday. But live and learn right? Now I’m not saying you shouldn’t go to one of these classes, I’m just saying we didn’t get a whole lot out of it and that we could have learned what we really needed to know in two hours rather than five.
Did you attend a parenting class like this? Did you find it beneficial?