Sponsored feature

Bricks build confidence

cake girl

LEGO® DUPLO® Research shows that children who are encouraged to use their imagination and express themselves creatively grow into strong and resourceful individuals.

Best children's books for bedtime

I love you bookClick for more photos

The EB team has compiled their favourite bedtime reading books for children, perfect from babies to school age. Cuddle up and cosy with your kids to read these classics.

Your child's first words

phone baby

Your baby’s first word is a big milestone – it’s a sign that she’s becoming independent and entering the next phase of her life. And of course, no matter what her first word is, it’s a very exciting time for celebration!

How to choose the right toys for small children

toysthumb

LEGO® DUPLO® Finding the right toy for a small child can be a challenging task. But before you spend an afternoon searching the toy section, there are a few things to consider ...

Review: LEGO DUPLO My First Range

duplo

SPONSORED FEATURE by Amity Dry There was much excitement when Amity Dry's children recently received items from the LEGO DUPLO My First Range. She shares what she - and her kids - thought of the brick sets.

Your child's first steps

first step

Learning to walk is a huge step (no pun intended!) in your baby’s development. From those first experiences of standing while holding onto something for balance, through to the initial hesitant, skaky steps, your child is making giant leaps towards life as an independent little person.

My first Christmas

first xmasClick for more photos

Essential Baby members have shared their little ones' first Christmases with us. As we approach the festive season, take a look at these cuties ...

How to play with your baby

peekaboo

The first time your child learns a new skill at playtime is very exciting - for both you and your baby! Play is important to your child's development for a variety of reasons - here are some simple ideas for you to try at home.

My first sibling

firstsibblingthumb

Justine Davies There's no doubt that introducing a new sibling into your family is a major life change for your first-born, but there are ways you can help make the transition to older sister or brother easier.

Return to the classics: what makes an 'evergreen' toy

greenthumb

LEGO® DUPLO® Not sure how all those new interactive toys work? Or even if your child will play with them? When in doubt, return to the classics.

Your child's first tooth

baby teeth

Most babies start teething around the age of five or six months. It can make them cranky and sore, but there are a few things you can do to help your child as the teeth start to erupt.

Review: LEGO DUPLO

Amity Dry

SPONSORED FEATURE by Amity Dry LEGO DUPLO is one of those wonderful kids’ toys that are everlasting; a toy that brings back memories of your own childhood. Amity Dry and her children tried out the latest products.

Your child's first sleepover

nanna baby

Perhaps it's your anniversary and a night out is in order, or you're off to hospital to have your next bub. No matter the reason behind it, your toddler's first sleepover is always a big milestone. Here are a few tips to ensure everyone has a restful night.

My first family holiday

firstholidaythumb

Amber Robinson Travelling as a family unit is a whole world of difference to travelling solo. Late nights and adventure sports may not be on the agenda but family travel has its own set of rewards.

My favourite friend: why kids love animals

1_zoothumb

LEGO® DUPLO® Children and animals are a match made in heaven. Not only do children have a natural affection for furry, four-legged creatures, but they can also learn a lot from their animal friends.

Your baby's first bath

firstbaththumb

EB staff writers There's a lot to consider when it comes to bathing your new baby, but there are some general rules for making the experience a pleasure for everyone.

Your child's first birthday party

first cake th

Leearne Hynes Organising any party can be loads of fun, but when it came to organising her son’s first birthday party, Leearne Hynes was beyond excited. She shares her party tips.

Our first family portait

family-portrait-thumb

Justine Davies Browse a professional photographer’s portfolio and you'll see image after image of happy, relaxed, smiling families. Photographers make it look so easy. The reality, however, can be anything but!

My first pet

firstpetthumb

Justine Davies Whether they have fur, feathers or scales, pets hold a special place in the hearts of many Australians.

Preschool building toys

Explore the LEGO DUPLO My First Range

The LEGO DUPLO My First Range combines building using basic bricks and role play that focuses on familiar everyday themes. Children can build and role play on the farm, in the supermarket, at the fire station or at the zoo!

My First LEGO DUPLO sets

LEGO DUPLO

DUPLO is all about giving your child the opportunity to build, create, and develop while discovering so many ways to play!

Win LEGO DUPLO prizes

WIN!

You could win a family holiday to the value of $5000, thanks to the LEGO DUPLO range of preschool toys - plus there are runner-up prize packs to be won!

Colouring Activities

LEGO DUPLO colouring activities

Celebrate the fun of LEGO DUPLO with these activities for younger kids.

Special Ticket Offer, Save $8!

The Essential Baby & Toddler Show is back this April! Save $8 off the door price for a limited time only!

Finding baby name inspiration in unusual places

Sometimes the greatest baby name ideas come from the most unexpected places, as these EB members show.

The case for inducing at 37 weeks

While we often think of pregnancy as a 40 week affair, experts agree that 37 weeks is actually “full term". So is there an argument for inducing all births at 37 weeks?

Does controlled crying really work?

Controlled-crying techniques may help some babies sleep through the night, but for many exhausted new parents, it's just a recipe for more tears all round.

How I taught my infant to use a toilet

As people become more aware of these benefits, I hope more parents will practice this method, so we can cut down on nappies and improve baby bonding.

'I thought it was impossible': Emily Symons pregnant at 45

Aussie actress Emily Symons has announced she is pregnant with her first baby.

Shallow water blackout kills fit, healthy dad

A little girl will grow up without her father after the fit and healthy 34-year-old passed away while doing something he had practised his whole life.

Afternoon naps may be bad for toddlers' sleep

You could be doing yourself a disservice by encouraging your toddler to have an afternoon nap, according to new research.

Best gifts for newborns, new mums and christenings

We've compiled a guide to some of the most popular presents for newborns and new mums, and for christenings and naming days.

Jaime King to be a mum again

Actress Jaime King is pregnant with her second child, giving 16-month-old James a sibling.

Nannies should receive government funding

The Abbott government should extend funding to nannies, and direct childcare payments to low and middle income families, a landmark study on childcare has found. 

Common skin irritations in newborns (and how to treat them)

As many as one in two newborn babies suffer from skin irritations in their first few weeks. So what are the most common rashes and irritations to look out for?

10 wall decals for the nursery or playroom

Wall decals are the answer to creating a beautiful nursery or children's space without lifting a paint brush, a spirit level or even a hammer.

Preschooler walks 2.4km home alone

Three-year-old Cain Trainor headed off home after his first day at a new preschool without telling anyone.

Video: Why mums get nothing done

In spite of being in an almost constant state of motion while looking after the kids and trying to keep things together at home, it can seem as though parents have managed to get nothing on the to-do list done by the end of the day.

The middle name game

The middle name is no longer an afterthought, and parents' inspiration comes from many places.

Have a baby or your money back - but there's a catch

A new IVF scheme offers couples the chance to fall pregnant and give birth - or get their money back. But there's more to it than you might think.

A rare glimpse inside the womb

A baby born still inside the amniotic sac gave US doctors a rare glimpse at life inside the womb.

Battered mum forced to write to her attacker ex in jail

Three years ago Jason Hughes viciously attacked his ex-partner. Now she has to write to him three times a year.

Woman pleads not guilty to ultrasound scam

A West Australian woman will fight allegations that she scammed expectant mums by selling them fake ultrasound pictures of babies.

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

Find a Nanny or Babysitter

Search by Postcode

Find a Babysitter

  • Daytime nannies
  • Casual babysitters
  • After-school care
  • Live-in nannies

What's hot on EB

Brain damaged mum receives compensation

A Sydney mother who suffered brain damage when she was hit by a car while pushing her newborn baby in a pram has reached a confidential out-of-court settlement with the driver's insurance company.

Indigenous midwives break down the barriers

A culturally sensitive midwifery service has gained the trust and respect of Aboriginal women.

The Katering Show's next big delivery

Most mums-to-be plan to take things easy and perhaps have a little break from work as the birth of their baby draws near. Not Kate McCartney.

53 creative pregnancy announcements

Announcing that you're expecting can be a time to express your creativity, sense of humour and imagination. Check out how other parents and parents-to-be have broken the news to friends and family.

Why I have mixed feelings about Cindy Crawford's leaked photo

Last week an un-retouched photo of model Cindy Crawford surfaced, showing the 48-year-old mother-of -two posing in underwear.

How to create a Peppa Pig pancake

Thought your toddler could not love pancakes any more than they already do? How about if the breakfast treat came in the shape of every two-year-old's favourite cartoon character?

'It's a little life, not a little loss': pregnancy after miscarriage

I thought I was never going to be able to have a successful pregnancy. I decided that I wasn't going to form an emotional attachment with this baby.

Bonds Baby Search 2015: what you need to know

February 18 marks the start of one of the most prolific annual baby competitions in Australia: the Bonds Baby Search. And this year is going to be more special than ever.

Who will manage your Facebook account when you're gone?

This is not something that people like to talk about, but Facebook has announced that it will grant users more control over what happens to their pages after they die.

Struggling mum of four wins $188 million

Mother of four Marie Holmes was financially struggling after quitting her jobs at Walmart and McDonald's in order to care for her children.

Win a KitchenAid Mixer

Let's celebrate 300,000 fans on Facebook

To celebrate, and to thank our amazing fans, we’re giving away a KitchenAid Artisan Tilt-Head Stand Mixer.