Looking for some helpful baby advice for new moms? Here are some ideas to consider while trying to prepare for the transition to life with a new baby...
- Consider hiring a part-time or full-time nanny or post-partum doula. With my first child I felt like I should "do it all" with the help of my husband and family. While they were all a huge help, this time I will DEFINITELY hire some outside professional help. Even if only for 2 weeks, a month, 6 weeks...the extra help is such a great way to feel more rested, sane, relaxed and actually enjoy these days.
- Consider hiring a laundry service for the first 1-3 months until you find a new rhythm. Before baby comes, wash all the big ticket items like bedding, curtains, jackets, guest sheets, area rugs, etc.
- Order birth announcements ahead of time and write out all the addresses, stamp envelopes, etc. before the baby even comes.
- Clean out your fridge and pantry, then load them with all sorts of healthy, easy foods. Frozen vegetables, frozen rice or quinoa, hummus, prewashed salad greens, steel-cut oatmeal (I think they sell this frozen now for even more convenience!)
- A baby monitor to watch the baby while they are sleeping, or hear them if they are crying in a different room. You can get video monitors that also monitor the temperature in the room, music in the room, etc. There are even ones that allow you to speak/sing to the baby over the airwaves in hopes of getting them to sleep from afar!
- A clip-on Snuza or pad you put under the baby sheets to monitor their breathing and alarm you if there are any times when the baby isn’t breathing. Some say these kinds of baby sleep monitoring gadgets make them more anxious. Others say having them helps them relax without constantly hovering over the baby. Postpartum can be a stressful time with lots of reasons to feel anxious. Ask yourself which strategy would be more helpful. You can also ask your pediatrician if they recommend any of these types of gadgets.
- Clean everything you can during the brief periods when you'll have energy. Use natural products, even vinegar, and keep fresh air circulating in the room. Enlist your husband or extended family for help.
- Shop in advance for any gift buying you will need to do the first few months after baby comes. Will anyone be having a birthday? Can you shop ahead for Christmas gifts?
- Start brainstorming ways you can get extra help and breaks when your baby arrives. Is there a grandparent that you can enlist to help? Perhaps they can take your older child out for a special ice cream or library/movie/amusement park outing every week. While your older children are out, you can take a nap with baby.
- If anyone asks what they can give- a frozen meal or gift cards to local takeout places will really help in those first few weeks when you are tired.
- Don't forget to look into any programs offered by your church, babysitting services at your gym, mommy's-day-out or drop-in childcare in your local area.
What was your single best decision after you had your first child? Share in the comments!
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