When you find out you’re pregnant there’s a whirlwind of emotions going on inside happiness, excitement, nervousness, uncertainty. Whatever it is that you are feeling, if this is your first child there’s no doubt you will also have a whirlwind of question going on inside as well. Will I breastfeed or use formula? How long can I get for maternity leave? Am I gonna be completely exhausted? What about childbirth? Where do I even start?
Every first-time mom goes through the roller coaster of emotions and questions, and you will get a different answer from each person you ask. I was clueless when my daughter was born, but quickly figured things out. Thank goodness for that maternal instinct, right? You will figure it out too, but just in case you want to prepare ahead of time, these are my top tips that I learned over my baby’s first year that made things so much easier and smoother.
- Anticipate your baby’s needs – you don’t necessarily have to keep your baby on a schedule, but you will quickly see a pattern to his or her behavior. Eating, sleeping, pooping… there will be a routine. If it’s getting close to feeding time, don’t wait until
babyis screaming to feed her, start before she gets to that point.
- Change his diaper before you feed him. It only makes sense to change baby’s diaper before you feed him because 9 times out of ten he will fall asleep. Then if the diaper is soaked after he finishes eating and is already asleep, you will have to wake him. Or if you let him sleep in the wet diaper he will most likely wake up sooner because of it.
- Swaddle. Keeping baby snug in a swaddle will help her calm down and fall asleep better and faster. Babies are used to being squished up in mom’s womb so it’s comforting to them to be swaddled. We have a great guide to learn how to swaddle that you can get in our Free Printables Library! Check it out here.
- Buy in bulk, if possible. If you have access to a Costco or Sam’s buy diapers, wipes, and formula in bulk. You can get a month’s worth for one price instead of going to the store every few days or weekly for packages of diapers or cans of formula. It ends up being more expensive that way. If you buy in bulk, you end up saving money overall. I have a great post on buying formula at Sam’s Club.
- Always feed and change baby right before leaving the house. When you and baby are heading out, feed and change him before you go, even if it’s going to slow you down a little. It’s better to feed him and let him fall asleep in the car, than have baby start crying in the middle aisle 3 at the grocery store because he’s hungry.
- Cut baby’s nails when she’s asleep. The best time to cut your baby’s nails is when she’s in a deep sleep. You will be able to pick up her hands and feet without waking up your sleeping beauty. It’s SO much easier than trying to clip them while she’s awake and pulling away from you.
- Always have a backup pacifier. If you give your
babya pacifier, be sure you always take an extra with you when you leave. They are so easy to lose. Baby will spit it out, throw it, drop it and it will roll off to who knows where. So definitely bring a backup in your diaper bag. And if you keep it on a pacifier clip, it’ll be a lot easier to keep track of.
- Start veggies first. When it’s time to start him on baby food, start with vegetables. Let him get comfortable with eating veggies first, then start meats, then fruits come last. If you start with the sweets first, your
babymight not want to try anything different. Be prepared for a picky eater by reading this post on Getting Your Picky Eater to Try New Foods.
Becoming a new mom is such a wonderful and exciting time in many new parent’s lives. My hope is that some of these tips may help you in your ever-evolving journey as a new mother.
Do you have any other tips that you think new moms need to know? Share with us in the comments below.