|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!|
1. Game: Whose Water Breaks First?
What you need: Small plastic babies and containers that they can fit inside such as an ice cube tray or a plastic cup.
How to play: Before the party, put one baby into each container, fill with water and freeze. Give each guest a frozen container with the baby inside. The guests must try to melt the ice and get their plastic baby out in any way they can think of. Whoever gets their baby out first is the winner.
2. Game: Having A Baby.
What you need: Balloons.
How to play: Divide guests into teams of four or five and give each person a balloon. When the host says, “Go!” the first person from each team blows up their balloon, ties it, and sticks it under their shirt. Once the first person has done this the second person does the same, then the third, etc. Once all team members have balloons under their shirts, the first person must pop their balloon, then the second, and third, etc. The team who blows up and pops their balloons the fastest, wins.
|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.|
3. Game: Name The Children From These TV Families.
What you need: Paper and pen.
How to play: Guests try to remember, or guess, these:
- What was the name of Fred and Wilma's child on The Flintstones? Pebbles
- What were the names of Ross Gellar's two children on Friends? Ben and Emma
- Name the three kids on The Simpsons: Bart, Maggie and Lisa
- Name the four children on Family Ties: Alex, Mallory, Jennifer, Andy
- Name the five Huxtable kids on The Cosby Show: Sondra, Denise, Theo, Vanessa and Rudy
- Name the six 6 Brady Bunch kids: Marcia, Jan, Cindy, Greg, Peter and Bobby
Whoever gets the most right, wins.
It's also expected that the host provides baby shower favors to everyone who attends the shower, or you can just offer prizes to the guests who win games. Here are some ideas for baby shower favors to help jumpstart your own creativity – or just use one of these!
4. Make a mix CD with some of the expectant couple's favorite music and a personalized CD label.
5. Send guests home with their own bundle of joy! Pop a handful of Jordan almonds in cellophane bags and wrap them up in a pretty fabric. Tie with coordinating ribbon.
|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.|