|Newborn Tips#1: Don't Hush-A-Bye-Baby|
|You don't have to be quiet while the baby is sleeping. The womb is loud, and newborns are used to the noise. When ours first came home, we watched television and I would vacuum, wash dishes and talk on the phone around her while she slept. She got used to sleeping with noise, and I could get stuff done. I am still able to vacuum in her room while she sleeps (she is 14 months), and she is peaceful and well rested when she wakes up.|
|Newborn Tips#2: Soothe Your Wailing Newborn|
|When my baby cries, I comfort her by patting her back in a heartbeat-like rhythm. That helps her burp more quickly, and it also helps her relax if she's crying from insecurity. If this doesn’t work, I also try one or all of Dr. Harvey Karp's five calming moves: swaddling, shushing, holding her on her side, swinging her or letting her suck. Sometimes it takes all six!|
Everyone enjoys a baby shower, from the creative games and activities to the gifts and refreshments. However, no one should ever feel obligated to bring a gift, and some may feel offended if you have more than one. So how do you please everyone?
If you are a first time mom, it is common and helpful to have a baby shower. Here are some rules:
If no one throws you a baby shower, don't get offended. You and your mom or friend can plan one together. Ask if they'd like to help plan and then add them to the “Host/Hostess” slot on the baby shower.Don't add your registries on the Baby Shower Invitation. This makes people feel obligated to buy you something. Instead, when someone calls to RSVP, you can mention your registries if they ask what you need, but be sure to tell them they aren't obligated to bring a gift.It is typical to throw a baby shower one to two months before your expected due date. This allows for time for the mommy-to-be to return the items that are duplicates and organize the nursery from everything she was given.Although many things have changed, in general men were not invited to baby showers except for the husband/partner toward the end to help open presents. Now, co-ed baby showers are starting to become more common. If you're looking for a traditional baby shower, only invite your girl friends and family.
|Newborn Tips#3: Help Get Your Baby to Latch|
|If you are having latch-on issues while breastfeeding your baby, you can use breast shields to help the process. This was a wonderful tip that I learned from my lactation consultant. I had to use the shields for an entire month before my baby would latch onto my own nipple without them. Had it not been for the breast shields, I would not have been able to continue nursing my baby.|
|Newborn Tips#4: Get Prepped|
|At 3 weeks, babies’ days and nights become more predictable, and you can focus on yourself in addition to your newborn. One way to do that is by reducing your stress level - and having everything ready for your hungry baby and yourself is one way to do that. Start by prepping for the next feeding as soon as the previous one is over. For example, after an 11 p.m. feeding, get ready for the 2 a.m. one by prepping whatever you need for feeding and putting out fresh drinking water for yourself so you don’t have anything to think about in the middle of the night. During the day, take advantage of the baby’s naps to work out, shower or catch up on e-mail, or take a nap too.|
Second baby showers are becoming increasingly common, however sometimes they aren't necessary. Sometimes when second baby showers are acceptable are:
If your second baby is of the opposite gender than the first. Even if you bought gender neutral things before, you will still need clothes, diapers and wipes! You may not need the more expensive items such as bottles, swing and high chair, but if you didn't buy gender neutrally, you will need those items.If there has been a considerable amount of time between the first and second (or third, etc.). After 5 years, most baby equipment, such as car seats, high chairs and baby beds are not recommended for use. Also, you may have gotten rid of your baby stuff from the previous baby, hand have to start from scratch again.If this is your first baby with someone new. If you are remarried or in a new relationship than the last time you had a baby, it is acceptable to have a baby shower. For many reasons, but specifically for the new family members and friends to be able to participate.If you are thrown a “necessity shower”. Necessity showers are thrown if someone already has a little one, between one and three years old and has almost everything. Guests are invited to bring diapers, wipes and other necessities that run out and eat your money quickly.If you are thrown a surprise shower. Surprise showers can be fun and come in all shapes and sizes. Some surprise showers are just for a few friends and family who want to get together to to gift small presents, and some showers can be themed, if the host/hostess has the time and energy to plan to do so.
|Newborn Tips#5: Keeping Your Baby Awake During Feedings|
|When our baby was eating slowly and sleepily, my husband and I would massage her cheek to stimulate her to eat faster. A gentle stroke with a fingertip on her cheek was all it took, and on those long sleepless nights, this simple trick was a godsend! Our friends have found it works great with their infants too. When babies eat efficiently until they're full before going to sleep, they sleep for longer between feedings. And that means you’re both likely to be calmer!|
|Newborn Tips#6: Help Your Baby Bond with Dad|
|Make sure your baby has ample time alone with Daddy. His touch and voice are different than yours, and this will begin a bonding process and give you a break. Plus, it gets the baby used to being with someone other than you. The first few times can be hard. Make sure your baby is fed and well rested, as this will give you at least one or two hours before you're needed again. Then leave Dad and the baby alone. If you stay nearby, make sure the baby can’t see or hear you, and resist the urge to go into the room and "fix" things if she starts crying. Your baby cries with you and you experiment to find out what's wrong. Dads need time to do this too - in their own way. By allowing this time, your child will learn there is more than one way to receive comfort, which will help immensely when you leave your baby with a sitter or another family member for the first time. You could have your partner bathe her, put her to bed or just read or talk to her.|