Thursday, 11 December 2014

My New Mummy Must-Haves

Lots of my girlfriends have either just given birth, or are about to have their first baby in the next six months, and they've all been asking me for advice on my best buys. It's amazing how a truly excellent baby product can make the difference between a sleepless night and a happy baby, and while some of the items below are expensive, they're all well worth the money! I've tried to find the cheapest prices for you, but with only a couple of weeks till the December / January sales, it's probably worth waiting for the bargains!

1. Aden & Anais Swaddles - I've found my second baby, Arthur, a lot harder to settle than my first. For the first few weeks he wouldn't fall asleep unless he was on me. That was until I rediscovered the joys of swaddling. These massive muslins are breathable and slightly stretchy, so they make the perfect snug, but not too tight swaddling wraps. Plus they come with a royal seal of approval, as Prince George was wrapped in one when he left hospital. Four pack, £45 and two pack, £29 of Aden & Anais Swaddles. Click for the full range.

2. Cosy Moses Basket, from £31 - Newborn babies are just so tiny and vulnerable, that their big cots just seem to large and lonely. A cosy Moses basket is a brilliant alternative for the first couple of months {after that they usually grow out of it}. They're super-portable, so you can move your sleeping baby from room to room, and place them right next to your bed at night. I inherited mine from my sister, but bought a new mattress, as recommended by the NHS SIDS guidelines.

3. Gro Anywhere Blind, £23 - Regular readers of the blog will know I'm a massive fan of these stick-on-blinds. They make any room pitch black, and I'm a firm believer that darkness helps babies learn the difference between night and day......which is the first step towards you getting more sleep. I own two, and they're my must have must have!

4. Motorola MBP36 Digital Video Baby Monitor - Never far from my side, this video monitor is the bees knees. You can read my full review here, but believe me, it's the best buy you'll make!

5. Muslins - As a new mum, you can't live without muslins. They're particularly essential for bottle-fed babies, but I'm breast feeding Arthur and I still get through several a day. Buy a variety - you'll want at least a dozen. 12 White Muslins, £14.99, or £4.99 for 3 Christmas muslins {currently half price!}, or splash out on 7 Rainbow Muslins, £28.95 {pictured}

6. Baby Bjorn Bouncer, £119 - It's a pricy option, but out of all the bouncers, this is my favourite. Arthur's learned how to make his bounce all by himself, and the ergonomic design provides proper head and back support from newborn. There's four positions to chose from: play, rest, sleep and flat for easy transport. Arthur seems to prefer sleeping in his bouncer to his bed!

More posts like this one:
 Six Rules for Visiting a New Mother

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Thursday, 4 December 2014

Five Tips on Introducing Your New Baby to a Sibling

Our two boys are only 16 months apart {I know - we're crazy!}. Before Arthur was born, I was really concerned about how Ivo would handle having a new baby brother. He was too young to really understand my bump, so I couldn't really explain anything to him, but I was worried it would rock his little world, and even make him feel replaced *gulp*. I read a couple of books on the best way to introduce the two of them, and noted a few hints I'd like to share. This is what worked for us - please do leave comments with your suggestions. Four months on, Ivo is still very much in the 'coming round to it' stage - so all advice welcomed!

{Photo Credit} Taken by me - this was the exact moment Ivo spotted his new brother! He saw his new toy first.

1. If at all possible, wait till you come home to introduce them. That way your child will be on his/her home turf, where he/she feels secure. Plus, there won't come a moment when they have to leave the hospital without you. I was in hospital for a week with Arthur {who wasn't well}, and I came home to visit Ivo, rather than confuse him with a new environment.

2. Don't be holding the baby for the first introduction. You want to be able to cuddle your firstborn at this key moment. Ideally the baby will be in his car seat or Moses basket. We actually came home after Ivo was asleep, so we introduced the baby in the morning.

3. Buy a present for the baby to 'give' your eldest. It sounds simplistic, and I doubted it's effectiveness, but we have Ivo a plasma car, ride-on toy at the same moment that he first met Arthur, and it definitely sweetened the experience. Make the toy an activity based one – it'll keep the occupied for longer than a teddy.

4. Try not to be too sensitive about your eldest prodding the new baby. I leapt up every time Ivo approached Arthur, and he quickly realised that this was a great way to get attention. He now has a very naughty habit of whacking the baby!

5. Warn your friends and relatives not to make too much of the newborn when they visit. I asked people to virtually ignore Arthur because I was so worried about Ivo getting jealous. Even at 16 months he was very sensitive to who was getting the most attention.

P.S. The books I read were - The Second Baby Survival Guide by Naia Edwards & The Contented Baby with Toddler Book by Gina Ford. Both were pretty good, but not essential reads.

More posts like this one:
 Six Rules for Visiting a New Mother

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