How I Parent Differently Second Time Round

I’ve written before about how I parent differently with Baby Boy in an Open Letter to my Second Child. That he may not have toys of his own, or clothes that have only been worn by him but that he does benefit from a Mummy who is more secure in her parenting style.

Which got me thinking of the other little differences second time round. The things I’d never have done with the Big One that I don’t think twice about with the Baby. Or things I did do that I now think are unnecessary.

For even though both boys have the same Mummy, with the same (slightly crunchy) fundamental beliefs in raising children, they have been parented oh so slightly differently. In part due to different personalities but in the main because I’m a more confident parent.  In short, I parent differently second time round….

My nappy bill is lower

If it doesn’t stink then I don’t worry too much.  Do you remember the wetness indicators on teeny baby nappies? With the Big One when they had the tiniest indication that they were wet he was whipped off to be changed. The Baby? Well that’s why they’re called Pampers Baby Dry right?

I’m not afraid to dish out Calpol

The Big One had to have a roaring temperature, be sick, have actual bleeding before I gave out Calpol. The Baby? A feel of him can tell me if he’s battling a temperature. The grumpy mood and pulling on his ears tell me he’s teething (along with the biting). A bunged up nose and a reluctance to breastfeed tells me he’s feeling rotten. Calpol to the rescue.


Skipping the purees

From hours lovingly roasting veg, simmering fruit, cooking up meat to be blended into mush for the Big One. Followed by hours spent cooking up recipes from the (still marvellous) Baby Led Weaning cookbook. The Baby got thrown in the deep end. Straight to full on Baby Led, with the occasional half hearted attempt from me to spoon feed weetabix, dinners cobbled together from his brothers meals or ours.

And it is so much easier.

Aside from the mess.

baby bolagnase

Baby Proofing

The Baby is on the move a lot earlier than I would like to be honest. Having been crawling since around 6 and a half months. (By crawling I mean commando crawling, which is adorable. It was all his big brother did before walking as well.) Which means I’ve had to baby proof a lot sooner.

And by baby proof I mean throw out the little pieces of Lego that end up scattered round the house. Nothing to do with me standing on them you understand?


I’m completely with Louise from Mum of Boys here, the Big One was in outfits as soon as I could get him into them.

baby in dungarees

Mainly dungarees as they were my all time favourite.

But the Baby? He is staying my baby is vests and comfy clothes for as long as I can. I especially love the Mamas&Papas vests, funky yet comfortable, now it’s cooling down mixed with my all time favourite Blade & Rose alien bum leggings!


I still have all the dungarees from the Big One, they’re just yet to make it out of the wardrobe.

I no longer panic – or apologise – when my baby cries in public

Babies cry. It’s their main form of communication. Hungry. Tired. Bored. They cry.

With the Big One I used to think people were looking at me thinking what an awful mother I was, and I have lost count of the number of times I burnt my mouth necking scalding coffee before fleeing the building.

This time? Well, for one it takes a lot longer for me to flee gathering up two of them. And if I did then it is just as likely that the Big One would throw an even louder wobbler. We just stay where we are. We stay calm. And I don’t apologise. I’ll get him to stop crying in the end.  Hopefully.

I don’t stress about routine (well not as much as I used too)

Fairly easy to do when you don’t really have one…..

I know roughly when he will be tired, I definitely employ the philosophy “when in doubt whip it out” for feeding. I’m following the Baby and his cues rather than feeling the insane amount of stress I did with the Big One when he wasn’t napping at 9:07am AND THE BOOKS SAID HE SHOULD.


All in all, these days, I’m more relaxed about the little things whilst the big things?  They are the things I make sure I keep doing.  More kisses.  More cuddles.  My biggest lesson from parenting first time round was that you can never have enough love.  And this is one thing that I am not doing differently second time.


If you liked this post why not follow Life with Baby Kicks over at Facebook for, to be brutally honest, a lot of photo spam of the boys.



  1. January 4, 2016 / 12:06 pm

    All so true! I am definitely more relaxed with number two and holding onto her being a baby for longer. Lots of snuggles, no rush to move her into her own room or stop her napping on me and no attempt to hide behind an apron when breastfeeding!

  2. January 4, 2016 / 2:25 pm

    I totally agree especially with the crying in public one. When big J used to cry I would freak out thinking people were judging me but now I don’t care haha

  3. January 4, 2016 / 7:54 pm

    I loved reading this post Laura. One day when I’m well I’d hope to have a second child and would so do things differently in so many ways and it was wonderful to get an insight of how you do it. I guess the first child we don’t have experience so having a second would mean you can pick and choose what worked before and do much better.


  4. January 4, 2016 / 11:04 pm

    Im really interested in this post as I have often wondered how I am going to do things differently next time round so its good to see someone else opinion! Note the comments about the outfits, I loved dungarees too xx

  5. January 4, 2016 / 11:38 pm

    I do not have kids yet but my mum said she did things a lot more differently with my siblings since she learned how to be a mummy with me. Great post.

  6. January 5, 2016 / 12:01 am

    Great post – I am parenting for a fourth time, and had my eldest 19 years ago! I parent Pickle so differently to my first baby. Kaz x

  7. January 5, 2016 / 12:17 am

    Your right your parenting experience changes all the time and I think it is great that you are taking it easier this time well done! It is important to know that you are still a good parent no matter how differently you parent your next child.

  8. January 5, 2016 / 1:13 am

    This is so true & it gets even worse by number 3! I often feed him fruit as we shop in the supermarket owning up to the empty packets at the till, is never have done that with number 1!

  9. January 5, 2016 / 2:00 am

    You’ve got this bang on. I was always desperate to never give my first born any medication unless she was on deaths door. Now, it’s given at any niggle.

  10. January 5, 2016 / 2:14 am

    I completely agree on the nappies and calpol.
    My poor baby gets nurofen pretty much every night before she goes to bed. She’s probably immune to it now. Lol she’s always teething badly.
    I never done baby led weaning. My first got purees and so did my second and she still does. She doesn’t seem to be good with lumps yet but she’s able to handle finger food no problem which is a weird one.

  11. January 5, 2016 / 11:50 pm

    I love this and I can relate to a lot of them even though I’m only a FTM. We love BLW, Freddie is 9 months and still mostly wears sleepsuits (nice ones during the day and plain ones at night) or leggings that make his bum look super cute. I totally agree with you about the crying thing too, that’s what babies do and that’s their only way of communicating! At first I was the same with the whole calpol thing, I felt like the worlds worst mum if I gave in and gave him calpol, but you know what? Leaving my baby crying in pain wil be much more harmful to him than having a bit of calpol!

  12. January 6, 2016 / 1:43 am

    Love this post. All things I reckon I’ll do the same second time around if or when that happens. Definitely with you on the clothing. I want babies in sleepsuits and comfies forever!!

  13. January 6, 2016 / 2:16 am

    I love this – and agree with lots of it! I must admit I was always quite free with Calpol and none of my children have worn “clothes” before they were three months old but puree . . . jesus I remember pushing mash potato through a sieve for Ben for fear he would choke but both girls had a lumpy mashed banana as their first food!

  14. January 6, 2016 / 1:57 pm

    I’m nodding my head to so many of these! I haven’t done any baby proofing for J other than remove small lego pieces too, and he lived in sleep suits until he was about 6 months old!x

  15. January 6, 2016 / 5:47 pm

    I completely agree with these – I remember when daughter number 2 came along feeling so much happier that I wasn’t worrying unnecessarily. By the time daughter #3 was here – i was positively chilled out! Happy New Year x

  16. January 6, 2016 / 7:35 pm

    I agree with nearly all of these, we would also tiptoe around the house when Jack was asleep, not so much now for Phoebs! x

  17. January 7, 2016 / 2:01 am

    Fab post – I definitely have been more relaxed second time round – especially with crying and tantrums. It’s harder to get a second baby into a good routine – they always have to fit in around their older sibling so you get used to having to be more flexible. And yes, we also did more baby led weaning (and had more mess!) second time around too! 🙂

  18. January 8, 2016 / 1:08 am

    Although we’ve not had a second child yet I definitely we’re going to do many of the things that you’ve listed. We’ll definitely be a lot more relaxed.

    Laura x

  19. January 11, 2016 / 6:31 pm

    This is all so true! My son is now four months and I have done lots of things differently now I’m a “seasoned” mum… I used to be a nappy snob – Only Pampers would do, now I’m an Aldi Addict. Having said that, I am enjoying dressing my little man, no hand me downs from his sister – I’m sure he wouldn’t appreciate her old girly outfits haha! Above all I’m far more relaxed than I was with my daughter xxx

  20. January 11, 2016 / 6:46 pm

    My kids are all grown up but I definitely enjoyed reading this post. I have a grandbaby on the way in June …. I will be straight SPOILING her lol

  21. Jess
    January 11, 2016 / 8:35 pm

    Everyone tends to relax with their second, once my little girl turned 1 I decided I wasn’t going to have any more, so I stopped being so cautious all the time with her and she’s definitely benefited from it! x

  22. January 11, 2016 / 8:48 pm

    Great post. I agree with you with the crying in public. I don’t see why any parent should apologise for their child crying in public. Everyone was a child/baby once weren’t they? Good post lovely

  23. Lata Sunil
    January 12, 2016 / 4:44 pm

    I agree with your observations there. The second time around, I didnt even realise when the baby grew up. Anyways, he was following the elder one and not me. I was glad for that. They would also play together and I didnt have to invent games or spend hours with him. That would be in future for you. Have fun.

  24. February 28, 2016 / 11:20 am

    I was just talking about this to my friend. With Big M (she’s 2 now) every milestone was a huge event, with Little M (she’s 11 months) her milestones just seemed have happened. She’s so much more independent and I’ve been more relaxed with her.
    Nap time is a prime example, Big M will only sleep during the day either in the car or the rare occasion you can get her into a buggy. Little M will go to sleep by herself in her cot! Why didn’t I have the confidence to do this with Big M?

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