Surviving the Holiday Season with a New Baby
Inevitably, the holiday season involves many events and outings with family and friends and lots of celebrating. This is doubled when there’s a new baby. Everyone wants to be a part of the baby’s first Christmas, and in a beautiful way it brings everyone together.
This year, I have found myself writing lots of lists, and reminding myself to slow down and enjoy the moment. In my last blog post, I wrote 5 top tips to make your holiday a great one. But what about your baby? Whilst they may not remember this first holiday season, if they have a terrible time, you certainly will remember it!
I went to my first Christmas party with my baby last week. After an exhausting and slightly overwhelming experience, I have put together 5 really important things to make sure you baby has a great holiday season and consequently, so do you.
- Try and stick to your baby’s routine as much as possible. Usually there are one or two days where you really can’t manage it, where there are hundreds of relatives around or you’re doing an epic drive to your yearly holiday destination, but otherwise, feed, settle, play with and bathe your baby at their usual times. Babies get tired really easily, and one off day can snowball into an off couple of days, or a whole holiday season of tired tantrums.
- Sticking to your baby’s routine can be difficult, especially when there are lots of friends and relatives who want to cuddle and get to know the new member of the family. So tip number two is be firm about what your baby needs. This is your baby, you get to decide when they’re up and when they’re sleeping. You know them best.
Help your family and friends to remember that your baby isn’t the latest toy that Santa brought, but a little person who needs a lot of sleep.
- If your new baby is not so new (like mine) baby proof your Christmas tree. Our baby did his first crawl two days ago, and while it’s more of a caterpillar squirm at the moment, by the time our tree is up, I’m sure he will be pulling himself up on things. There are lots of great alternate options to Christmas trees. A picture of a tree on a wall, a small tree on a table, or an ornate hand made stick tree hung from the ceiling. Each one offers a different option that doesn’t present the same hazards as a traditional decorated tree in the lounge room corner does.
- Take a lot of photos. Not only will you want to remember your baby’s first holiday season, but your baby will want to hear stories about it. Kids love to hear stories about when they were babies. Baby’s first holiday season is when many new family traditions are started, particularly if this is your first child. Capture the moments that are the beginning of something really special that will last a lifetime.
- Keep a bag packed and next to the front door, filled with things that baby will need over a whole day. It doesn’t matter how well you plan, chances are you’ll end up with a crying, overtired baby at a relative’s house at least once over the holiday season. By taking the fully stocked bag you’ll be prepared with enough nappies, wipes, spare clothes, food and anything else baby might need. You’ll have the best chance possible to mitigate any adverse effects the overtiredness might have on your baby.
Have a fantastic holiday season, take the time to make some great memories for you and your family, and enjoy this new little person who is sharing this special time with you.