Now that I have the ball rolling with Lollygag Learning I thought it was about time that I reintroduce myself to you all. My name is Alicia and I am a mom to an active, lively 1 year old old girl. We just celebrated her first birthday but being a mom still feels new to me! I’m constantly thinking “I still feel like I just looked into her eyes for the first time!” Maybe it was the anticipation of having my first child after dreaming of starting a family for so long that made my pregnancy feel like it lasted for 3 years.
I got married at 19 during my second year of college. I studied Early Childhood Education, Psychology and Human Development/ Family Studies and obtained a Bachelor of Science in Psychology. Throughout college I worked full time as a professional nanny for school aged children, a Household Manager in a busy home with teens, and as a preschool teacher. During my time in school I flip flopped between wanting to become a child psychologist and being a teacher. I love both fields and I am so interested in how our brains work and how we learn.
My background in psychology gave me a strong foundation in the use of positive reinforcement and a great understanding of child development from a psychological perspective. I was able to learn hands on about using positive reinforcement and positive forms of teaching in the classroom and in a home. This style just really fits my personality. I am always reminding myself to look for the positive side of things.
After graduation I began to look for a “real job”. I spent time working as an Infant Education Director and a mentor to infant teachers at a preschool. I also taught in K-12 classrooms for several years and worked for some time in a pediatrics office but I was really missing working one on one with children and being a part of their life at home. I left the classroom and found myself back in a home learning environment, but this time with families with newborns. I was lucky enough to find the most wonderful families with newborns and infants to work with. These families were looking for a childcare provider who had experience with early childhood education, family relationships, and experience with caring for newborns’ special needs.
I really loved putting everything I had learned at school into practice and growing along with the new parents and their sweet babies. Most of the infants I worked with were about 8-12 weeks old when I started and 18 months to 3 years old when I moved on to work with a new family. From bottle feeding to toddler meals, sleep schedules and strategies to setting a daily preschooler routine, first socialization experiences to preschool readiness, sensory play evolving into learning through art and music, baby sign language to speech and language development, and researching all of the different styles of parenting and home schooling there were to choose from. My experience working as a Newborn Specialist really helped prepare me for being a mom in so many ways!
At the same time, doing all of these things with my OWN baby is a whole new world! I do NOT have all of the answers! I refuse to aim for perfection- I’ll only end up failing! And I still have soso much to learn. I am really excited about my future and about my baby growing into a toddler. It would be too easy to be sad about her growing out of my “favorite” stage. We have so much fun ahead of us in this upcoming shift in her development. Thank you for joining me along the journey! I truly look forward to getting to know you and sharing our experiences with you.
baby babe and me
Owner and Writer of Lollygag Learning