Reader help needed

I've got three questions that readers need some help with.

#1: A reader has been advised by her doctor to get the Mirena IUD for post-partum birth control. She's used NFP/FAM (charting) as birth control in the past, but isn't willing to trust it right now since she doesn't have her cycle back and isn't getting enough sleep to chart accurately. She's wondering if anyone has any experience with Mirena that they'd be willing to share.

#2: Bobbi writes:

"OK, I have one of those rare beautiful children who prefers to put herself to sleep.  She (10 months old) WILL NOT fall asleep in your arms.  So what's the problem you ask?  How the heck am I supposed to cut her nails when I obviously cannot do it while she's sleeping?  Currently I have to physically restrain her while she's in her highchair and go as quickly as possible while she screams her GUTS out - no fun for either one of us, but it is the only way I can sort of keep her still while ridding her of the razor claws...*sigh*

If you have any advice on this I'd appreciate it.  Otherwise I'll have to resign myself to the screaming highchair torture until she's old enough to understand that I'm really not trying to kill her."

I've got absolutely nothing. My first child slept through all the ambulance, fire engine, car alarm, and other noises of New York City, but would wake up instantly if we tried to cut his fingernails while he was sleeping. For years we did the highchair torture routine, but then he started biting his nails. I can't really recommend that. Someone reading must have something that works.

#3: Clare writes:

"Any book recs for toddler emotions?  Our normally sweet tempered, easy going boy (2 yrs 4 mo) has suddenly started hitting whatever's in front of him, including favorite books, us, and himself.  We're planning a big move (from the east coast to the mid west; we're leaving in about 2 weeks), so things are a little crazy now, and I know he's feeling totally disrupted even though we're trying to keep his schedule as normal as possible.  I know he's anxious and frustrated, and we're trying to help him label his emotions. When he does hit us, we put him in a very short time-out mostly to calm him down; when he's about to hit us, we remind him to count to three and then tell us that he's __________ (angry, scared, frustrated etc).

He LOVES books and being read to, so I thought a couple of books on feelings might be in order.  He has a fantastic attention span for a little guy; he insists I read Curious George Goes to the Hospital several times in a row, and he will gladly sit with his dad to hear a chapter or two from Milne's Winnie the Pooh.  So, simple board books might be too basic, though if one has great pictures of sad, angry, scared, etc faces, I think it would work."

Before we get to books, I'd like to suggest that Clare take a look at my post about dealing with aggressive behavior in 2-year-olds. I think Clare's son is having more emotions and urges than he can express, even if he's very verbal, so it will probably help him if he has a physical way to get out his urges to hit. (The post tells about what we did when my son was going through a particularly awful biting phase that helped him manage his biting urge to stop biting people. I think it could translate directly to hitting or pushing.)

Now, on to books about emotions. I'm not that knowledgable about books (we tend to stick with our favorites a lot here). But I looked in my copy of the excellent and worthwhile book Reading With Babies, Toddlers and Twos to see if they had a list of books about emotions. (The book is filled with list after list of different kinds of books that young kids love. If you love lists, or children's books, or lists of children's books, you need this book.) They do (of course), and the books that look like they'll fit what you're looking for best are Feelings by Aliki (a book of facial expressions), My Many Colored Days by Dr. Seuss, and Mama, If You Had a Wish by Jeanne Modesitt.

I recently discovered Fuse #8, a blog by a children's librarian (I read some of her well-thought-out reviews of kids' books on and clicked through to her blog). She writes about books and authors and being a children's librarian and other random stuff.

And I'm always in awe of Raising WEG's Jody's ability to catalog and digest the books she and her kids read together. Check out her Library Books category archive for lists of the books they checked out each month and her thoughts about those books. She's got other thoughts about books in her Books category archive.

Does anyone out there have any good book suggestions for Clare?

Please repond to one, two, or all of the reader questions. Knowledge is power.