Top 8 Newborn Tips I learned after having my first kid...
I am far from being a baby expert, but I’ve learned some tricks along the way from my family members as well as other bloggers and us mothers have to stick together and share. These tips may not work for all, but if it helps any mother get more sleep or reduce stress than my job is done! Please feel free your own tips and products below. I would love to add more “tricks” to my bag!
ENJOY THIS STAGE...
Tell yourself to sloooooowwww down. You probably still have an ongoing list of things you need to get done or want to buy now that baby is here or now that you even know the gender. Take time to just sit with your little one and SOAK IN the love. That means also taking it easy on your husband too– not insisting he gets up and does things as well. Enjoy the time with your family and even watch the interaction between your first and second kid. Time will go by fast. Yes, RELAX, and people still may offer help with the second, but also know how fast this time truly goes and before you know it the “quiet time” with your second love will be over before you know it and THEN you will want or need the help:).
RESIST THE URGE
I’m learning that it is difficult to juggle two children especially in the beginning when they are both under the age of two or even three for that matter. One child always needs SOMETHING–you physically to hold them, a snack, help with shoes or finding a toy, or just good ‘ole attention. With that said, sometimes the less needy one gets the shaft. It’s good to start in the beginning to resist the urge to provide aids with helping your second one fall asleep –rocking in a chair, vibration, patting the back. I read somewhere once that after 4 months old, the baby can become dependent and any new transitions may be difficult. This was our big mistake with our first to where he now fully depends on my husband or I to get him to fall asleep. My second one usually still gets rocked a little bit, but usually it doesn’t take no more than 5 minutes and I can put him down slightly awake and he will finish the job. Our first is even using a weighted blanket to help… (see my post to learn more).
KEEP IT SIMPLE
Cleaning after two littles a job all on it’s own. Bottles, pacifiers, pumping parts, medicine droppers etc…let’s just say the dishwasher can fill up fast or your sink can fill up fast if you have decided to continue to hand wash bottles for your second. 🙂 IF you do than you go girl! If it starts to wear on you than definitely invest in purchasing these life/time saving microsteam bags. If you are pumping at all, then this is a MUST HAVE purchase that will also save time;Medela Quick Clean Breastmilk Removal Soap came with me where ever I went. This goes a long way just a couple of squirts after each pumping session and rinse and you are good to go.
TIME FOR A DEEP CLEAN?
No this is not for you or your lady parts ha! This is for when you get to the point of no longer wanting to see the dirty looking bottle nipples that have waters spots on them or they are just looking worn that you are feeling guilty of having your little one suck on them AGAIN. Here’s a quick tip–grab some Q-tips and a little bit of liquid Dawn Dish soap or even the medela quickclean removal soap. Just a little bit of soap and hot water on the end of Q-tip gets the jobs done fast. I rinse them and air dry and BOOM all the bottle nipples are ready to go!
SLEEP IS OVERRATED.... SAID NO MOM EVER!
So definitely figured this trick out early on with our first kid and it worked with our second too! Our first child had eczema as a newborn as well as stomach issues. As new parents you try everything and this, Baby Merlin’s magical sleep suit, actually did the trick. Our second kid did not have eczema nor did he have stomach issues, but this sleep suit helped with transitioning him from the rock and play to flat on his back in the crib. This also was while he was transitioning out of the swaddle. During the warmer months, both kids were absolutely fine with just slipping this on over a diaper or sometimes just a short sleeved onesie and both slept great! Yes, their little bodies looked like the Michelin Man, but hey we cherished the suit and even bought the 6-9 month size as well. You will not be disappointed in this sleepwear.
PLUGGED? You and baby!
Feeling a bit engorged? This is another unfortunate that can curse your amount of sleep. Plugged or blocked milk ducts can really put a damper on your day, your mood, your sleep, your idea of ever wanting to get pregnant or nurse ever again. This is one of those unfortunate things that can happen to a nursing mama (that no one really tells you about) and it seems to happen to the best of us who JUST WANT SLEEP. There you are in the middle of the night or first thing in the morning and you wake up sore in one of your boobs (or both) and you can’t figure what just happened? It hurts to be touched and don’t even get me started on the idea of having your kid nurse on it. EEK! Yes, the good ole heating pad can come in handy, but if you are a working mama or a busy mama on the move in the house and cannot be restrained to a wall outlet, check these breast gel pads out! I always kept them with my pump just in case! They are freezable and microwavable! They work after you are done nursing too for “owies”. Keep one in the fridge or freezer and it becomes a great cold compress.
Speaking of plugged? Our second kid was prone to getting stuffy at night time and we were constantly suctioning out his little nose. It became a nightly routine and sometimes we had to do it twice a night. There is nothing worse that having to hold your little one down at 3am kicking and screaming while trying to suction out a nose full of snot or boogers. These are two products that worked great for us. Little Martin’s nasal aspirator worked great! Of course the more expensive one cut down on the amount of times we had to suction and how long it took. This top notch aspirator, Baby Smile, kept my husband from arguing in the middle of the night, “Are you even holding his arms down”. Our first son was a fighter! My husband, medical field guru, compared it to the hospital’s nasal aspirator. This nasal aspirator can be bulky buy by far the best.
Okay, so I will admit I did NOT do this with my first kid because as a new mom you try to do so much by the book and honestly I was afraid to stray, but I wish someone would have told me it was okay to do this to keep your child on breast milk. I did NOT do this when my son was a new born rather than when he was around 6 months. So I know I will get haters for this, but my son was getting the full amount of ounces + of breastmilk needed for him at his age. My kid was a chunk and always in the 90th percentile or greater. With that said, if you do NOT agree with this then good for you, you must have been blessed by the breastfeeding gods with a great amount of supply, unfortunately I was not around 6 months so I did what I needed to do for my son. (Haters will continue to hate I know it.) You do what what works for you and your child.
There are times when your milk supply will dip and maybe you do not have a huge supply built up. I would add an ounce or two of water (not poison) to my milk supply for more volume. Yes, I am definitely aware water does not have the same nutrients as breastmilk, but my second child was an eater when it came to breastmilk. I felt like there was no bottom to his stomach! I would just add a couple ounces before heating up the breastmilk in a bottle warmer of course then I made sure to swirl it (not shake as I was recently corrected on my verb usage by a reader) up real good. He would chug it just the same if it were a bottle with some water or without. Before he turned 6 months and I began using water, he was constantly getting constipated so per doc’s orders I would add a couple ounces of prune or pear juice to his bottle before warming it. Once again this tip was per doctor’s orders. Not only did this solve his constipation in a day or so, but it also added volume to his milk. Our son’s doctor even suggested doing just water and juice in addition to his regular bottle. This is the kind of pear juice we used, but you can find it at Target and Dillon’s Kroger Stores. Doctor was absolutely fine with water added to his bottle. He informed me that my son will not die from added water to his milk since he was eating more than enough for his age. I have also added some warmed formula as well to a bottle of breastmilk to add more volume during times my supply dipped as well. Most moms are not aware of this and I was not either, but do not be afraid to use formula to keep baby happy. You can always stop using formula if your supply increases again.
Sleep...and more sleep.
Can you tell sleeping is important to us? Ha! This product ends up on everyone’s registry of course, but I definitely was not aware of this product for our first kiddo. So in case you have not heard of the Rock ‘n Play then where have you been?? Just kidding of course, but seriously this is definitely worth the money. There are different versions and styles, but our second child slept better in this than the pack and play did for our first kid. Ours did not have a battery so we rocked by hand, but it still did the trick of getting him to sleep or even back to sleep if he woke up suddenly. If you are trying to stretch your little one’s feedings, this is the end all be all, in our case anyways. Once again though I would highly recommend moving them out of this contraption before the 4 month mark and they become dependent on this– also I believe the sleep position is not ideal as their little bodies and hips are still growing. Check it out!
Well, I’m sure I’m missing something and if I think of anything else that is definitely on the MUST HAVE List or a trick in the newborn stage, I’ll will add to this post. Remember us moms have to stick together so please feel free to add your tips in the comments below —I would love to hear from my readers!
Check out my new post Toddler Sanity Savers and Travel Guide with Kidshttp://littleheroadventures.com/travelguidewithkids/