A few discovery tips that should be shared more often
Ello! It's been 7 weeks since giving birth to our son Alexander James and I'm finally starting to feel like my husband and I have a more set rhythm with our baby boy. Don't let that first sentence fool you, being new parents is hard but of course very rewarding. You can see in the photo, my eyes are a bit sleepy; if you can't tell, then let's say it's just good eye makeup,
I want to share a few tips I've come across since Alexander was born I thought would be helpful for the new moms or expert moms out there.
Tip #1 - Set Up Snack and Diaper Stations!
If you're a mommy who is breastfeeding or planning to breastfeed, keep snacks and water all around the house at diaper stations in different rooms. A friend of ours suggested this tip and it was and still is such a lifesaver.
Let's face it, every delivery is different, and you won't know what your post-partum experience will be like until it happens so it's best to be prepared.
In our house, for example, we had one diaper and snack station in our son's nursery, a second was in our Master bedroom, and the third was downstairs near the kitchen near our Pack n Play.
Having snacks, water, diapers, and wipes around will help you during those late and early times when getting up to sooth your baby, feed your baby, and even changing your baby. When I say snacks, I'm talking about granola bars, water bottles, Lara Bars, Trail Mix baggies; easy on the go snacks that won't go bad. A big thing for new mommies to know if Breastfeeding will make you very hungry and thirsty; I wasn't aware of this.
Tip #2 - Meal Prep Ahead of Time
As we approached the big day on meeting Alexander, we made it a point to prep and freeze meals we could easily pop in the oven for heating. We heard a lot from family and friends how difficult it would be to get meals done and have such little time to eat that we really took this tip to heart.
Looking back, this was and still is one of my favorite tips of advice. It not only took away the worry of finding time to prep food for us, but also took away the wonder if visitors would bring us food whenever they wanted to visit baby.
One other idea I heard from a friend, but we didn't do was to set up a "Meal Train" where you have family and friends pick a date on when to send you food. There is no overlapping of meals, and the new parents choose what hours they'd like to receive food and which method (ex. leave at the door).
"Looking back, this was and still is one of my favorite tips of advice".
Tip #3 - Build Your Mommy Community
Building a community of women who are experiencing and have experienced what you go through as a new mom is so vital.
I have a group that ranges from super experienced mamas to FTM with me just weeks ahead or behind. The support and trust that's built within this group helps the mental health of what a new parent goes through. You always have someone to text or call during those tough moments of mom guilt, exhaustion, confusion, panic, pure joy, etc besides with your partner.
Let me clarify, having a supportive partner is SO HELPFUL, but also having a group of ladies does the trick. It removes the feeling of loneliness, isolation, frustration at times; it's good to vent from time to time.
Tip #4 - Plan Ahead for Sanity and Nap Traps
Something I started doing once I got to know our son more was to plan ahead on what is needed for the next day.
For example, in our household, I'm more often than not the one who goes downstairs with baby boy first to start the day. If you're a coffee drinker like me, I like to have a fresh pot ready in the morning.
Well, usually I'm still sleepy and carrying baby downstairs to keep him from waking up daddy that I may forget to walk to the kitchen and prep the coffee before getting snuggled trapped on the couch. What I've been doing as of late is prepping the coffee machine the night before so that next morning, it's just a push of a button.
Another thing I do is prep a bottle for morning. In our case, our son is hungry as soon as he wakes from a nap or nighttime sleep and is known to have become a ravenous being of hunger. So to avoid the cries as much as possible, we have the bottle or nurse asap.
The meal prepping comes back to this tip, having dinners ready to heat after a long day are golden here. Otherwise, can't go wrong with takeout too.
Nap Traps, these are naps when baby falls asleep on you; whether it be after nursing or just during a snuggle. Sometimes the naps are longer than expected and I can't bring myself to waking him up. To be ready, I have a big bottle of water nearby, my laptop to work on my blog or check emails, snacks (trail mix), reading book, phone, and airpods in case someone calls me or I call someone.
Tip #5 - Take All the Photos and Videos
Do it, I promise you won't regret it. Baby sounds change constantly; the coos and cries, even yawns of our now almost two month old are different from our baby when he first was welcomed into the world.
Yes, your phone will be full of pictures and videos but that's what backup hard drives are for. :)
My favorite thing to do is compare from day one to now and the change is amazing. I can safely say that I'm the mom who puts her baby to sleep and spends most of their nap time looking at photos and videos of them.
Do What's Best for YOU
All in all, do what's best for YOU and your family. As a First Time Mom, I still struggle with this when hearing so many advice points, watching YouTube videos, listening to doctors and nurses, our own family.
Everyone has an opinion and their own experience but none are the same because every family is different and every baby is different.
Listen to your mom instinct and it'll come into play.
I'm looking forward to reading back at my FTM tips in a year or so; I wonder how much would change.
Alright, baby is hungry, Gotta Go!
Ta Ta for now,