Before Little was born, I made the decision to foster a sense of independence in Little as early as possible which was heaviliy influenced by how I raised my oldest daughter. The fact that the oldest left home at 13 to pursue a full scholarship at a university 1300 miles away from home caused a definite shift in consciousness and led me to believe that anything can happen. When she went away, it wasn't her intellectual ability that concerned me, but rather her ability to care for herself. I felt I hadn't prepared her for the world in so many ways because there was much I hadn't taught her. I thought I'd have more years with her than I did. So with Little, I've tried to use the motto "Teach me to do it myself" as much as possible and so I did so from as early as 6 months when she began eating table food to now operating her listening station alone and helping in the kitchen. There's no better way to strengthen the parent-child bond and boost your little's confidence than to take the time to teach them how to do things for themselves.