68 episodes

The early years of a child’s life are the most important for their long-term development. Sometimes, the abundance of information out there can feel overwhelming and difficult to navigate. My New Life is here to support parents and help make sense of the science behind early learning.

I’m Jessica Rolph, mother of three and CEO of Lovevery. With the help of experts from around the world, we break down all the child development science into usable nuggets of knowledge that you can put to the test in your own home.

My New Life Lovevery

    • Kids & Family
    • 4.9 • 606 Ratings

The early years of a child’s life are the most important for their long-term development. Sometimes, the abundance of information out there can feel overwhelming and difficult to navigate. My New Life is here to support parents and help make sense of the science behind early learning.

I’m Jessica Rolph, mother of three and CEO of Lovevery. With the help of experts from around the world, we break down all the child development science into usable nuggets of knowledge that you can put to the test in your own home.

    How to boost your baby's biome

    How to boost your baby's biome

    We hear a lot about the first 3 years of a baby’s life — how critical those years are to brain development. But today’s guest, the author of The Baby and the Biome, would argue that the same window is just as critical for our gut. Probiotics may have a role in keeping that system healthy. But are probiotics helpful to babies? And what about when you’re pregnant? Jessica Rolph, your host, welcomes Meenal Lele, founder of Lil’ Mixins.
     
    Highlights:
    [1:39] When do babies pick up their first dose of bacteria? 
    [2:54] How does birth affect this bacterial environment? How does the introduction of bacteria differ between a C-section and a vaginal birth?
    [4:56]  What can people who have C-sections do to replicate the bacteria that’s introduced during a vaginal birth?
    [5:58] Should parents bathe their babies right away, or is there any benefit to letting them go unbathed for those first few days? 
    [7:18] What are significant sources of good bacteria for your baby to build their microbiome in those first weeks? 
    [9:18] What kind of probiotics does Meenal recommend for mixing into formula? How do you work those into breast milk?
    [11:11] When our babies start to eat solid foods, should we supplement with probiotics? 
    [12:51] What are other benefits of probiotics and supplementation?
    [14:22] What would Meenal do if she had a baby now, knowing everything she knows?
    [17:18] Why have human microbiomes lost microbial diversity?
    [21:52] Jessica shares her top takeaways from the conversation with Meenal.
     
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Brought to you by Lovevery.com
     
    Receive weekly emails about your child’s development, and stay in the know about new play essentials, promos, and more by signing up at Lovevery.com
    Follow Lovevery and Jessica Rolph on Instagram.
     

    • 24 min
    Screens: What the research tells us

    Screens: What the research tells us

    Screens are so effective at distraction, but equally effective at causing parents angst! In today’s interview, Jessica Rolph is joined by Lovevery expert, Dr. Zach Stuckelman, to get to the bottom of the research on screens and young brains. 
     
    They examine which content is better than others, and whether those learning apps are really teaching our kids anything. They also explore the value of video chatting and looking at family pictures or videos together on a phone.
     
    Highlights:
    [2:01] Are screens bad? How much is too much?
    [5:18] Zach breaks down the age bands for screens to help parents navigate what to do when.
    [7:08] How do we pick the best screen content for our children? What is the difference between something like Little Bear, Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood and Powerpuff Girls? 
    [10:14] Is video chatting with family members different than “regular screen time”?
    [11:18] How about screen time on a long trip with an 18-month-old?
    [12:40] Is it ok to let children look at pictures of their family and videos of themselves playing?
    [13:47] What kind of time limits should parents enforce?
    [14:50] What to do when an older sibling gets access to a screen and the younger child is below the ideal age range?
    [17:12] Jessica shares her takeaways from the conversation.
     
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Brought to you by Lovevery.com
     
    Receive weekly emails about your child’s development, and stay in the know about new play essentials, promos, and more by signing up at Lovevery.com
    Follow Lovevery and Jessica Rolph on Instagram.
     
    You’ll find tips on how to scale back on screen time in Jessica’s interview with Meghan Owenz from September of 2020. 

    • 18 min
    Ready for more? Why birth spacing matters

    Ready for more? Why birth spacing matters

    Usually when we consider having another baby, personal preferences factor heavily into decisions around timing — things like budget or sibling dynamics. But it’s rare to consider the health impacts, and it’s even less common to discuss birth spacing with your doctor.
     
    Jessica Rolph, your host, welcomes Dr. Alison Gemmill to today’s episode. Alison is an Assistant Professor at Johns Hopkins, in the Department of Population, Family, and Reproductive Health. She shares the biological benefits and risks associated with the timing of your pregnancies, with the goal of helping listeners make informed decisions about when to grow their families.
     
    Key Takeaways:
    [1:35] What does the research tell us about the optimum time between pregnancies?
    [2:27] What are the benefits of waiting 18 months between pregnancies?
    [3:22] What should parents be doing about spacing between a miscarriage? 
    [3:58] What about waiting more than five years?
    [5:38] What risks are at play in the case of an older mom?
    [8:51] What does research show in regard to the connection between autism and birth intervals less than 18 months?
    [10:11] What is Dr. Gemmill’s theory on how much the baby takes from the mother’s nutritional reserve and for how long it takes to build that backup?
    [11:33] Jessica shares her top three takeaways from her with Dr. Gemmill.
     
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Brought to you by Lovevery.com
     
    Receive weekly emails about your child’s development, and stay in the know about new play essentials, promos, and more by signing up at Lovevery.com
    Follow Lovevery and Jessica Rolph on Instagram

    Pregnant with your second? Listen to My New Life Episode 22: “New additions: Bringing home a sibling” with Gabrielle Felman, and you’ll find more insights on sibling dynamics on the Lovevery app. Details at Lovevery.com

    • 11 min
    Normal fears vs. anxiety with Dr. Lockhart

    Normal fears vs. anxiety with Dr. Lockhart

    With everything we have to worry about in today’s world, it’s easy to lose sight of how our children can have their own big worries too. Things like getting nails clipped, night-time noises, strangers, doctors, even entering a pool can feel overwhelming to our children.
     
    How do we help them push through their fears? Which are normal, and which are extreme? And how do we validate their feelings without making their fears worse? Jessica Rolph, your host, welcomes Pediatric Psychologist Dr. Ann-Louise Lockhart to today’s episode. She is an expert in childhood anxiety and helps parents distinguish between appropriate behavior and something that requires more attention.
     
    Key Takeaways: 
    [1:48] What should parents do and not do when it comes to soothing their children’s fears?
    [3:11] What’s the optimal way to handle fear? 
    [4:22] How to tackle repetitive fears?
    [6:08] When does separation anxiety become a concern? 
    [8:17] Where do parents draw the line between encouraging, strongly encouraging, or even making their child try something new, while also respecting their fears?
    [10:35] How can we help a child push through their fear?
    [13:15] Do we push through the first time they face a fear, or can gradual exposure begin the second or third time? 
    [15:07] What is a normal level of apprehension towards strangers for toddlers and what is extreme? 
    [18:30] How do parents avoid over-pathologizing their children?
    [21:17] Where can parents get help with their questions about anxiety? 
    [22:03] Dr. Lockhart suggests parents be aware of what we are consuming.
    [23:33] Jessica shares the highlights of her conversation with Dr. Lockhart.
     
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Brought to you by Lovevery.com
    Receive weekly emails about your child’s development, and stay in the know about new play essentials, promos, and more by signing up at Lovevery.com
    Follow Lovevery and Jessica Rolph on Instagram.
    Connect with Dr. Ann-Louise Lockhart on Instagram

    • 26 min
    Tips for teaching kindness

    Tips for teaching kindness

    Young children are naturally egocentric. This is a normal part of their development, as they must first make sense of the world around them through their own eyes, before they can see it through someone else’s. In fact, until they approach preschool age, they have little reason to believe that others might have feelings or thoughts different from their own. But getting them to eventually understand that everyone’s got their own perspective, is how we teach kindness.  
    Empathy — the ability to imagine how others might be feeling — is a cornerstone of kindness, and Jessica Rolph, your host, is joined by  Monica Guthrie-Purchase to help us support our children in building that skill. Monica is a Start Early Education Coordinator. She is also the mother of two adult sons and grandmother to one granddaughter.
     
    Key Takeaways:
    [2:01] What is the first step to building kindness?
    [2:45] How can parents model empathy?
    [5:10] When do children start showing that they have empathy? 
    [6:43] How can parents help their children build perspective?
    [9:34] The benefits of teaching your child that a person isn’t bad, only their behavior.
    [11:18] Should parents encourage their child to make an apology? 
    [14:24] Monica shares some practical activities to teach empathy.
    [16:28] How can books help children build kindness and empathy?
    [17:23] Thinking of others can become part of the daily routine at home.
    [20:46] Jessica shares her top takeaways from the conversation with Monica Guthrie-Purchase.
     
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Brought to you by Lovevery.com
     
    Receive weekly emails about your child’s development, and stay in the know about new play essentials, promos, and more by signing up at Lovevery.com
    Follow Lovevery and Jessica Rolph on Instagram.
     
    Kindness Starts With You, Jacquelyn Stagg

    • 23 min
    Montessori made simple with Simone Davies

    Montessori made simple with Simone Davies

    Independence, freedom, order, beauty. These are all elements of the Montessori play space, and who doesn’t want these things for their child? However, sometimes adopting a Montessori approach can feel like a high bar.
     
    Jessica Rolph, your host, is joined by Simone Davies, author of The Montessori Baby and The Montessori Toddler. She can also be found online at The Montessori Notebook, where she gives tips, answers questions, and provides workshops to parents.
     
    Simone would argue that it doesn’t have to be all or nothing when it comes to embracing Montessori at home; there are many small ways to incorporate Montessori, practices that not only reduce clutter but also bring more ease into our daily routines with our toddlers. 
     
    Key Takeaways:
    [2:06] Does Montessori’s focus on real experiences get in the way of a child’s natural inclination towards fantasy and imagination? 
    [4:05] How does Montessori reconcile this focus on the “real” with a child’s enthusiasm for dress up and fantasy play? 
    [5:18] What are the differences between Montessori at school and Montessori at home? 
    [6:31] How long should caregivers allow children to be immersed in self-driven tasks? 
    [7:44] What does it mean to be a Montessori parent? Who is Montessori for?
    [8:42] What does freedom within limits look like in a Montessori home setting?
    [9:28] Is there a Montessori view on discipline? 
    [11:14] What does “Follow the child” entail?
    [13:20] What are some ways to create a “Yes space”? 
    [14:49] How can parents support their child’s freedom of expression and movement in a small home? 
    [16:02] Simone talks about how having a beautifully prepared environment can feel out of reach for some people.
    [17:26] What is the best way to implement toy rotation?
    [19:40] What are some ways that families can incorporate Montessori at home without spending any money? 
    [22:10] Jessica shares the highlights of an inspiring conversation with Simone Davies.
     
    Mentioned in this episode:
    Brought to you by Lovevery.com
    Receive weekly emails about your child’s development, and stay in the know about new play essentials, promos, and more by signing up at Lovevery.com
    Follow Lovevery and Jessica Rolph on Instagram.

    • 25 min

Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5
606 Ratings

606 Ratings

642706378 ,

Great Podcast for New and Seasoned Parents

I love this podcast so much! Each episode holds valuable information. I am a mom of two and I enjoy the various perspectives highlighted in the episodes and the wide-range of topics.

I recommend this podcast to any parent of young children!

realmom89 ,

Feels like being mom- guilt

This show feeds off of mom guilting parents and pushing their money grabbing products. Yikes. Please don’t listen if you are a real mom who doesn’t have a six figure job and a superiority complex.

CaroDlt ,

Love it!

I love this podcast so much! Thank you Jessica for all the value you add to this world. Bringing to us amazing guests that share so much wisdom. Love what you and the company you have created stands for.

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