BabyCues is one of those books that comes along and makes you think, ‘if only this was around when we had our first child.’

Our first child suffered miserably with colic/silent reflux/dairy intolerance (add in here any other common ‘symptom’ you like!), and it took us almost a year to settle her into a normalised sleep pattern. And talk about the fruitless hours spent aimlessly searching the internet for information that might help!

After reading BabyCues, I’m almost certain had this book been available, we would have settled our first child from the outset. And avoided the dreaded ‘sleepless night-fussy feeding-irritable baby-sleepless night’ cycle.

What I am liking

When you first pick it up BabyCues feels like a very solid reference manual, and it is. But the really clever thing is how Philippa Murphy breaks down the content into very simple, very manageable sections and chapters. The content is thorough, but it’s also logical and straightforward. You can really feel the writer ‘talking’ to you as she walks you through various concepts, current thinking and research, and even debunking some serious myths along the way.

Then comes the really practical stuff. We’re given easy, step-by-step instructions, with lots of great pictures, on exactly how to feed, burp, bath, swaddle, sleep, etc.  Now a lot of this is practical, common-sense stuff. But I can almost guarantee most new parents don’t know this stuff, and will have to learn it on the job (which is less than ideal for baby, who just wants reassurance and consistency!). Take winding (burping) for example. We’re told the minimum number of burps for a 2 to 6 week old is 10, with 20 being even better. Well, who knew? Don’t worry though, the book lays out the Nature’s Wind Sequence to help you achieve the optimal winding regime for baby through their various ages and stages.

Where the book really comes into it’s own though, is how it teaches new parents to read baby’s ‘cues’. It turns out babies are trying to communicate with us all the time. Sometimes the communication is an almost biological response, especially earlier on, but as baby grows there are still lots of subtle cues being given. To the novice parent these ‘cues’ may just seem like their baby being, well a baby! But by understanding the cues, you’ll be communicating with your baby better, and able to tend to their needs more easily.

Any improvements?

It’s really very hard to think of anything that would add more value to this fantastic book. There’s certainly a lot to digest here, and that could be a little overwhelming for a sleep-deprived, new parent. But the answer to that is to buy this book early on, or give it as a gift at the baby shower. Reading this book, and understanding baby’s cues, before the baby arrives will give new parents such a great understanding of what’s going on. Then, once baby has arrived, you can go back through it section by section, and put into practise the crucial steps.


BabyCues really is an excellent book and should be staple reading for all new Mums. We really are kicking ourselves for not knowing some of this stuff when we had our first child (just how many ‘cues’ did we miss!). But then, why are we expected to parent by intuition? Some parts of parenting aren’t that obvious, and lots of it isn’t that easy. By arming yourself with this crucial knowledge, you’ll ensure your new parenting journey has a fair few less road bumps than ours did!

BabyCues – Written by Phillipa Murphy – Published by Murphy Media Ltd. – RRP $49.95 (print) $29.95 (eBook)


Jarrod is a quintessential Kiwi Dad. He lives in the sunny Horowhenua, and works from a home office, overlooking his chickens and the sea. His inspiration and motivation in life come from his wife and two kids.

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