Watch toddlers when they are with older kids
This story about a toddler who choked to death on a handful of sunflower seeds is a grim reminder of how careful we have to be when little ones are around older kids and want to do what they see the older ones doing. The older kids were eating sunflower seeds and the 16-month-old boy thought he could do the same. But we all know the rules -- no grapes, raisins or nuts for those little ones -- and certainly not a handful at one time.
Once, when my older son was about 10 months and already walking, I was upstairs getting dressed for work and my husband was in the kitchen getting a drink for the baby. We both heard a choking noise and came flying into the living room to find that he had picked up a film canister -- yes, old school -- and in attempting to take the top off with his teeth, got it stuck in his mouth. We managed to get it out of his mouth before it slid down his throat. It was a good reminder to pick up those things so that he would not get into that situation again.
Although the situations are different, they do show that things can just happen so quickly no matter how vigilant you are. So you have to try to think ahead and that means even re-childproofing your house when guests come over or if you just haven't done a sweep in a while. For now, all we can do is feel sorry for the poor parents who have lost their little one and learn a lesson on how important it is to always take extra care.
-- Sherry Robinson