Some advice for the new mama

Off

My good friend, Laura, just had her baby shower and everyone offered up some advice to the new mama. I thought of a bunch more on my way home, so here it is all in one place – what I’ve learned after having three

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  • i find strollers to be rather tedious. if I ever do use one – my favorite is the maclaren umbrella stroller. they are great for theme parks or street parties etc…to carry around stuff
  • it’s ok for baby to cry – my doc said not longer than 15 minutes at a time (though you may not be able to handle it)
  • try practicing putting baby down to sleep – so he/she doesn’t get too used to falling asleep in your arms – it’s great of course but causes problems down the line (I have not been good about doing this and our babies all needed to constantly being carried)
  • try out all the baby carriers and see which works best for you – a short synopsis of what I do
    • moby and peanut sling for first month
    • bjorn or beco until 12 pounds (dad only uses this)
    • ergo after 12 pounds and when strong enough to go on back (in case of third, this was as early as 3 months although they recommend 4 months and older)
  • formula is not terrible, i always used it to get started on the frozen milk supply. the alternate is to find down times to pump to start your supply
  • try the bottle as soon as you can as soon as breastfeeding is established. you will want to or need to go out when the baby needs to drink so it’s good he/she can take a bottle
  • blog or journal.  it’s nice to remember some of the history, for number two or your friends or for posterity for the little ones
  • get a system of organizing photos – i use lightroom and keep folders per date. then i upload them to smugmug.
  • sign up for amazon mom, order diapers, wipers, happy tot, etc and other things as subscribe and save – it saves money but more importantly it saves time
  • buy everything from craigslist or walmart/target/kmart. don’t buy anything expensive unless you have money to burn. you can get clothes from friends or from the used closing store. i buy a few new things now and then but otherwise it’s all hand-me-downs.
  • don’t assume your husband knows to wipe front to back
  • deal with a clogged duct immediately. don’t wait. if recurring, nurse on that side more frequently and first when possible.

stuff to get before heading to the hospital/or wherever – you don’t need much at all. the hospital has everything

  • something nice to wear to take a picture in – you may have the hospital gown photo and it’s nice to have something withoutt hat
  • a good camera
  • infant car seat and carrier
  • try to have a name ready – it really doesn’t come to you that well when you are there. for number two, we were still talking boy names in labor, and for number three, i changed her name several times and am actually about to legally change it

when leaving the hospital

  • get a pic in the hospital of the whole family
  • take as much as you can, diapers, pacifiers, blankets, desitin or butt cream, hats, etc.

stuff to get for the first month

  • the nurses at the hospital will give you advice on what to get, i.e. medicated pads, pads, ice, etc.
  • boppy pillow or my brest friend – nursing pillow – whichever works best for you
  • a bath tub
  • a sling or baby carrier – will do a separate post on baby carriers, but the moby works well when they are little
  • pacifiers if you want to go that route, but can also get the good ones from the hospital
  • a few good outfits for pictures, cotton onesies are the best
  • bassinet or co-sleeping sleeper
  • nose cleaner – can get from hospital
  • thermometer – one of those easy to use ones
  • swing (though our kids never liked these)
  • nursing cover
  • changing table, pad, dresser

stuff for the next couple of months

  • activity mat, gym, etc.
  • some rattles

3 months +

  • exersaucer (when baby can hold up her weight) – and not too much time at once (i try to keep it under 30 min) but she will get bored sooner than that when young
  • bumbo chair
  • jog stroller if relevant
  • crib

6 months + (or when they can sit)

  • high chair
  • standing piano or zoo where they can pull up and stand

what they tend to like (well mine did at least)

  • girls – 2 years – dora, 3 years princesses
  • boys – 2 years -thomas, 3 years cars, 4 years  legos, 5 years – star wars