This post is made possible with support from the Association of University Centers on Disabilities through a cooperative agreement with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s “Learn the Signs. Act Early.” program. All opinions are my own.
I remember when we had our first baby. I was OBSESSED with whether or not she was meeting her milestones. Anytime like I felt she was falling behind on something, I panicked. I would ask the same question in all 3,421 Facebook parenting groups I’m a part of and they would all tell me the same thing, “Breathe.”
Thankfully, I was just being a first-time parent in all of the circumstances I presented. It’s important that while milestones are critical, hitting all of them exactly the second they turn 3, 6, or whatever corresponding age bracket, isn’t always going to happen. Much to my friend’s pleasure, I calmed down a bit with my second child. I realized that sometimes she would hit things much earlier than projected, while other things took a few more weeks. And that was okay. What is important is to find reputable sources of information on developmental milestones and keep tracking your child’s progress.
CDC’s “Learn the Signs. Act Early.” program offers developmental milestones that most children should reach by different ages. What’s great about this campaign is that parents can now know exactly which milestones their children should be reaching from birth to age 5 years old.
The “Learn the Signs. Act Early.” program is geared towards early identification of children with developmental disabilities, including autism. By detecting these concerns early, children and families are able to get the services, as well as the support, they need. Each milestone age gives targets for how your child should play, learn, speak, act, and move. By watching and tracking your little’s development, you are able to quickly act if something is not on track.
We recently hit the 18 month milestones, and are now gearing towards the 2 year old ones.
Some of the 18 month milestones she has been reaching are:
- May have temper tantrums
- May be afraid of strangers
- Says and shakes head “no”
- Knows what ordinary things are for; for example, telephone, brush, spoon
- Scribbles on her own
- May walk up steps and run
- Drinks from a cup
- Eats with a spoon
- and more...
One of my favorite milestones from this age was her learning to really use a spoon. Mostly, because it meant that there was less mess to clean up. Don’t get me wrong, there are still messes and accidents, but her learning to use a spoon has helped so much.
Today, I wanted to share one of my favorite treats to make at this age is Banana Swirl Ice Cream.
Now, I know what you may be thinking. Ice Cream at 18 months!? This isn’t healthy! But SURPRISE! This Banana Swirl Ice Cream has just 3 ingredients, helps to meet the daily fruit serving size AND helps with teething. SAY WHAT!? It’s true. Frozen foods have always helped my girls when teething and these last teeth they get between 12-24 months are always the hardest in our house. It also helps with teaching them spoon skills. What kid won’t practice spoon skills for some ice cream! 😉
Here’s the recipe for Banana Swirl Ice Cream
- 6 large bananas
- 2 cups frozen strawberries
- 3 tbsp water
- Chopped Walnuts, Optional
- On a baking sheet lined with wax paper, chop up bananas into large chunks and spread across sheet.
- Place in the freeze until harden.
- Meanwhile, place frozen strawberries and water in a suacepan and heat over medium heat.
- Stir often until the strawberries break down.
- Using a sieve, separate the strawberry juice from the pieces.
- Set juice aside and let cool. *You can throw away or compost the pieces.
- Once bananas are frozen, place in a food processor and pulse until the consistency of ice cream.
- This takes about 3 minutes and you may have to scrap down the sides of your food processor.
- Pour ice cream into a bowl and swirl in the strawberry juice.
- Serve immediately or place back in freezer until ready to use in an air tight container.
Looking for more information about where your little should be? Head over to the Learn The Signs. Act Early page today!