Pregnancy and Parenting Resources for Librarians

In my opinion, children's librarians are actually family services librarians. We have the opportunity to serve parents, grandparents, educators, etc., in addition to our community's youth. Many times parents feel more comfortable talking about researching parenting choices with the children's department's staff because they have a personal relationship with us. We're "their" librarians, after all! 

As a new mom myself, I want to encourage my fellow youth librarians to take a minute and refresh your knowledge of pregnancy and infant care.  I'm going to share some of my favorite resources for those stages. Please add your own in the comments! I'm sure I forgot some and I'd love to know more.  

Parenting Choices and Pediatrician Recommendations 
Links in this section go to the appropriate page on
Cloth or disposable diapers
Baby's sleep accommodations and safety 
How/when/if/method(s) of sleep training
Vaccine schedules (regular schedule, delayed, no vaccines at all)
When and how to introduce solids (purees versus baby led weaning)
Parent-centered or child-centered approach (Feeding on a schedule or on demand, for example)

General Parenting Sites and Resources

Apps and Text Services
Most available for iPhone and Android users
What to Expect When You're Expecting
Text4Baby free, educational texts available in Spanish or English for expectant and new mothers (babies up to 1 year old)

The Happiest Baby on the Block DVD How to calm and settle a baby for fussy periods and naps. Best for babies 3 months and under. Every public library should have this in its collection. 

General Websites
Healthy Children (from the American Academy of Pediatrics)

Parenting Blogs I Read
Hellobee (modern parenting written by real parents from across the U.S. and Canada. Lots of urban dwellers.)
Motherlode (New York Times parenting blog)
Young House Love (Technically a DIY blog, but lots about how they are raising their daughter)
Parenting Starts Here (Isis Parenting blog)

Message Boards to Know 
These are all free to register and post: 
Hellobee My personal favorite
The Bump

Twitter Users to Follow
Nancy Holtzman (@nancyholtzman) A registered nurse and lactation consultant at Isis Parenting (Boston-area) dispenses practical baby care and parenting advice what seems like 24/7. 

My parenting-related Pinterest boards 
Baby Led Weaning (introducing babies to solids without purees)
Great Gifts for Parents and Babies (these are my favorite baby products)
Nursery & Kids' Spaces
Future Kids

Resources in Your Community
Do you know where patrons can get: 
  • free or reduced price vaccines (local health department--Vaccines so expensive! It is not unusual for me to take a peek at our insurance company's statements and see $700 or more in vaccines in a 20 minute well-baby appointment.)
  • formula, breastfeeding, or food assistance (WIC and other social services)
  • treatment for postpartum depression (local mental health agency)
  • Reduced price prenatal care (Planned Parenthood, some health departments)
  • cloth diapers (Do you have a store or service in your area?)
  • information on product recalls ( from the Consumer Product Safety Commission)
  • second-hand baby products (consignment/thrift stores, mom-to-mom sales, etc.) 
  • information about adoption (local agencies, Catholic Charities in some areas) 
  • information about becoming a foster parent (AdoptUSKids, state information here)
  • car seat installation and/or inspection (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has a locator, often it's hospitals and public safety departments) 
  • affordable well and sick child care (I think it's also handy to know some of the names of the local pediatricians, but obviously the feasibility of this depends on the size of your community.)
  • health insurance for their kid(s) (CHIP is the national Children's Health Insurance Program, administered by your state's health department)


  1. What about the big D (aka discipline)? Any theories/methods/etc to know?

  2. I love Dr. Sears books, especially Positive Discipline and Nighttime Parenting. I used The Baby Wearer forums and site a lot when Bobo was smaller. Attached at the Heart, The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding and The Everything series with emphasis on parenting, babies and toddlers are all wonderful books. I put out lots of parenting and children's activities books during my programs, which are shelved in the Adult section as I know it's difficult to browse the shelves with little ones.

  3. I know you are not near this topic yet with your little one's age, but Potty Training! Just had a parent in on Saturday asking about DVDs for this. When checking our card catalog, found our 1 & only DVD was missing, so I ordered a couple of newer titles.


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