Bundles of Joy, Bundles of Blues

Among the main reasons why I write this blog whenever I have the time is to help out new moms. So I have decided to dedicate this post to one particular thing new moms experience that is not so widely talked about, also known as postpartum depression.

After giving birth, new moms can go through crying spells, anxiety, mood swings, irritability, feeling overwhelmed, problems with appetite, sleeping or concentration, etc. These so-called ‘baby blues’ often begin two, three days after giving birth and can even last two weeks. Not everyone gets ‘the baby blues’. So if you are reading this – don’t get alarmed. But some do and for some moms, the ‘baby blues’ can bring about more severe symptoms, which can evolve into what is called postpartum depression.

The symptoms of this condition can comprise all of the abovementioned symptoms, but in a more severe form, as well as feelings of hopelessness, worthlessness, overwhelming fatigue, withdrawing from friends and family, feeling that you are not a good mother, feelings of shame, etc., and sometimes even, thoughts of harming yourself or even your baby. Unfortunately, after I had my first bundle of joy, I went through a period of postpartum depression.

Although my condition was never so severe as to have thoughts of harming myself or others, it was nevertheless a painful experience. Most importantly, it was an experience where I was filled with conflicting emotions: on the one hand, I was overjoyed over being a mother; and on the other hand, I was overwhelmed with feelings of sadness and insecurity over whether I can be a good mother.

I was among the lucky ones however, I had an amazing husband by my side and amazing family and friends that did not simply allow me to withdraw from everyone. I mean, there were days when I was so irritable, that the simplest things could trigger me: I would rant at my husband if there wasn’t hot water right away, while he would calmly explain to me even some of the basics of troubleshooting tankless water heaters, in our case, basically because we didn’t have a recirculations system, it took just a few seconds for the hot water to be provided; or all those times I got so angry with him over not coming back from work on time, while he would gracefully explain that his company has taken on even more projects… Truly, I am so blessed to have a good family. My loved ones also encouraged me to find a good therapist, which helped me so much in the end.

After 3 months of therapy, I was back to my normal self. Of course, the type of treatment and duration of treatment will vary, and different things will work for different people. But it’s important to remember that if you have the ‘baby blues’ for over two weeks, there is help out there. Even though I went through this experience, I managed to deal with it quickly and come out stronger and happier than ever.

Should I Filter Baby’s Water?

Nice clean, soft, purified water. Yes, it is for drinking, and also for baby’s other needs. The whole family can benefit from a water filtering system, to be installed shortly. You can install them on sink faucets, as in the kitchen, or the whole house. I love the idea of better water in the shower. It makes your skin feel smooth and less chemically attacked. Your hair comes out better and less tangled after washing. It’s just a good all-around policy if you care about toxic things floating in the fluid.

So, yes, the baby gets filtered water for drinking and bath. All the kids want it. I have spoken of it and have sung its praises enough to friends on the phone. I have researched it on the Internet and in magazine articles. They have piped in with their high-pitched vocal support. I don’t think these little tots even know what they are talking about, but they are in!

Water filter systems aren’t as expensive as they seem. Yes, you can just get a budget one for drinking water and keep pitchers and bottles of clean water in the fridge. You just change the cartridges from time to time. I am talking here about one of the better whole house water filter systems though. which are more costly. I think that it is worth it in terms of its many benefits, especially for the baby. Over time, I don’t think we will notice the increase in budget. At least I will save money on hand and body lotion! The good ones cost a couple hundred dollars to a thousand with additional outlay for replacement parts. If you do your research, you will find just the right one.

What do you get? First of all, you purchase a model that suits the number of rooms in your home. Upon installation, you get spring-like water right in your own home. It comes with a tank and various valves. Presto, no more itchy skin or chemical smells during bathing. A company comes out to do it for you so you can be assured it has been correctly placed. Replacing the inner filters is easy. You can go battery or electrical and both types come with warranties. So there’s no worry or guesswork.

Other pluses besides baby-quality water is that filtration systems cut down on bacteria and they don’t waste water. No guilt needed! And…drum roll…you get better tasting coffee and tea. Who knew! I am liking this more and more. It’s because that nasty chlorine and those dreaded heavy metals are nowhere to be seen. Herbicides and pesticides aren’t likely to be in civilized city water systems, but if they should rear their ugly heads, they will be dealt with apace.

Companies that sell filtering systems for household water tout the latest technology with catalytic carbon this and ion exchange that. I don’t care how it’s done, just that it works. I am doing something good for my family and that makes me feel great.

Making Your Own Kid and Baby Clothes

If you have the sewing bug and crave creative expression, you don’t even need to have little ones to try your hand at making baby and toddler clothing. They are so darn cute for boys and girls alike. You want to buy them just to have them around. Miniature dress with pleats and lace, tiny cargo pants with animal buttons, diminutive jean jackets just like Dad’s. And the precious sweaters are to die for in the softest and sweetest of yarns. I happen to have kids so I can indulge my fantasy for my own family, but somewhere along the way I know there will be birthday and holiday gifts galore.

I was blessed with some dexterity and a natural affinity for working with my hands. This is certainly a big factor in making the decision to sew. If you are clunky and inept, forget it. This is real precision work. Not only do you operate a complicated sewing machine that takes a PhD to understand, but you must thread miniscule needles and tie infinitesimal knots. Then you have to have an artistic eye for fabrics, trim, and colors. You need to recognize quality and learn to select what is suitable for the wearer. Where and how long will it be used? How will it be washed and cared for? Who will see it?

If you go to top-tier children’s boutiques, you will be amazed at the degree of detail and the salute to the latest styles. The boys’ shirts are embroidered with trucks and sci-fi figures. The girls’ dresses are trendy and costly. With so many celebrities having kids, there is an obsession with the ultimate in clothing for their every need. Nothing is too extravagant for star progeny. Not Burberry coats or Prada dress, not Gucci shoes or Dior sunglasses. This is a lesson, for better or worse, in total indulgence. But we watch E! News to find out.

I have my own idea in mind of how I want my kids to look at every age. I will customize it as they grow. It makes sense to start with babies. You don’t need much material! Just make sure it is machine-washable and sturdy as hell. Onesies are great in imported stretch cotton knit. You can graduate to little frocks and pants (elastic waists), tiny shirts and blouses. The fun is in the features: Peter Pan collars, striped polo stops, and smocking (how great that the Brother is programmed to do this so well!).

I might even introduce the kids to the fun of sewing and creating their own clothes or other items. My machine is a bit too complex for them to use, especially as beginners, but I could get a simple kids sewing machine that could be a lot of fun!

Maybe I should open a shop. Ha! Who has time? But I do want to be a part of my children’s appearance while exercising my creative side. Clothing can mold a little being and maybe I can stave off Gothic tees and hideous metallic for a while. Peer pressure is too strong, so I will have to enjoy my handiwork while the kids are quite young. They have no sense of taste, only conformity. So for now, bring on the pinking shears, gather the straight pins, and let’s sew.

My Amazing Hand Mixer

What can be so special about a hand mixer? Aren’t they all the same? We all have one or two, some pretty old as they seem to last longer than we care to have them around. We inherit them from mom. New models beckon to be purchased and any good homemaker wants state of the art. I certainly did and went for one I read about online. The review was sensational so I read about the features and benefits and just had to have it.

I am afraid to reveal the name just yet. I’m not sure you can do that in a blog. I am going to say positive things, so maybe it’s okay. The device I chose has all the bells and whistles—and more. You will like it if you are anything from a gourmet chef to a novice (or somewhere in between like me). It has to be easy to use, not too heavy or clunky, and can handle any task with resilience. It also has to match the sleek gadgets that now populate my upgraded kitchen. In other words, it has to fit in with flair!

It is interesting that they still make the old style. Now they call it vintage. You know, two beaters. Very simple. The big brands, however, have amped them up with hot colors like red and orange. New ones have more speeds. This was a big plus for me, if not a requirement. I don’t want to have to pull out a big stand mixer for every little job. If I want some instant whipped cream for a sundae, I want it fast without fuss.

Being practical, I went for a combination hand mixer and blender model by the inimitable Braun. It is great and does everything well with its multiple attachments. It’s the all-in-one solution for busy on-the-go people. You can mix, blend, chop, and whisk to your heart’s content. Whip egg whites or dice nuts. Your choice. What’s also nice is that the Braun Multi Quick Professional is reasonable in cost and compact in design. It would make a good wedding gift. It even comes with a spatula, measuring cup, and recipe book! Now that’s a real deal.

Now that I’ve got this wonderful new mixer in my kitchen, I’ve been looking at some of the other appliances that I could get and I’ve become fascinated with the idea of getting a bread machine. Some of my friends have them and they cook all sorts of delicious sweet and savoury breads in them, so much so that I always look forward to visiting them and trying their latest creations.

When the time is right, I roll out this magical appliance and get to work. Cooking is more fun when it isn’t so laborious and time consuming. Making pecan pie is a breeze and concocting a yummy smoothie is a joy. You look forward to trying new things when you have the right equipment. Perhaps hand chopping was never your forte. Now it can be with this hybrid mixer. It can make minced meat out of any fruit or vegetable while it attacks meat with ease. You may already own the same accessories separately (especially the cookbook), but it is a great space-saver utilitarian object when you are ready to go for new and better. I am trying to tempt you. I would say that it changed my domestic life.

Shower Madness

Birthday parties for kids are such fun that I decided to try a pool gala for my nephew George, five, at his suburban home. The yard was great for the little ones—lots of space, a nice lawn, some pool toys, and the like. Just a few friends would be coming so the adults could watch the little swimmers frolic. A lot of splashing and yelling indicated a good time was in progress. The tots were just out of toddlerhood and able to enjoy water games and sports. Some could dive off the low board, usually in cannonball fashion. Others waded quietly in the shade. Things progressed well for the two-hour festivities. As the kids became tired, however, they needed to get out of the pool and dress for cake time and photos. We had it pretty well planned. In spite of our vigilance, however, one little deserter found his way to the upstairs bathroom and decided to shower off the smelly chlorine. Who knows why?

A little trail of wet footprints was found leading to the master bath. After all, it had a huge shower with a double shower head, big enough for two adults to clean themselves in luxury… or get a bit of mum and dad time. Pete, the kid in question, thought this would be just right. Surprise, surprise. The shower head was so complicated that when he started turning the knobs, a deluge of water began drenching his little soul. We found him in no time after seeing his abandoned clothing and hearing assorted shrieks–not always of delight.

We found the tyke up to his little behind in suds, which was a laughing matter; but we also detected tears amid the water droplets covering his diminutive face. Poor fellow. We felt so sorry for him. We dried him off with a big, fluffy deluxe towel and wrapped him in a dry one to take him downstairs for a change of clothes. We thought that would be the end of the matter. Not so.

A few of us parents finally got to see what A Great Shower that George’s parents have. The bathroom area rug was a miniature wading pool and George’s parents were in considerable distress. Pete could have drowned, after all, in their very own kid-safe home. They thought the kids would be secure by the pool and they were right! The house was another matter.

Pete was the talk of cake time. He couldn’t stop bragging about his adventure and loved the attention. George was not as enamored with the tale, but the birthday boy put up with it seeing all the laughter and glee. Pete was his buddy and frequent play date. He wasn’t going to spoil his fun. Kids like adversity, especially when they can overcome it. The shower head became an evil dragon spewing water venom. The adults could just see vivid pictures in the children’s heads of this simple device coming to life. Pete was the conquering hero and a good time was had by all. But not until each child got to see the villain for himself.

Bath Time Made Better Thanks To My New Kitchen Sink

I love my children, but I’ll be the first to admit that I hate bath time. If you want to give your baby a bath, you’ve either stuck with a massive amount of safety equipment that sits in your bathtub that hurts your back as you lean over the side of the tub… or you’re stuck holding up your newborn in the sink and the faucet doesn’t actually cover the entire child. If I had a nickel for every time I had to splash my newborn to clean off the soap, I’d have a kitchen full of nickels!

With my new pullout kitchen faucet, however, life is a lot better in this area! Sure, I didn’t have the budget to buy one of the best kitchen faucets on the market, but that didn’t stop me from getting something that meets my needs (and my budget). The big I don’t have the back pain from leaning over the bathtub and I can quickly rinse down my child with a gentle spray that makes bath time fun for both of us! I love the giggles and clapping that happen now!

Why Is a Pullout Kitchen Faucet Better?

Bath time is a lot better because of the detachable hose and sprayhead that comes with my new pullout faucet. I get about two feet of extra length, which is the perfect amount of space to help me get the back of my baby’s head washed without causing water to go everywhere. I can also lean my child back in the sink and wash the top of her head so there’s no extra water, soap, or shampoo running into her eyes and causing her irritation.

Maybe it’s a little thing, but I find it to be incredibly important. I use a lot of natural items in our family to limit our chemical exposure, but there’s nasty stuff in just about everything today. Would you want to put formaldehyde into your eyes? I know I sure wouldn’t! And I also wouldn’t want to cause my baby to have the discomfort of these chemical solutions either. The entire setup is nice and easy, letting me make sure that bath time is fun so we can do it again instead of painful and making it become a power struggle.

My Faucet Helps Me Save Water Too!

I’m guilty of wasting a lot of water. Whether it’s cooking or it’s bath time, I tend to just leave the faucet on because I’m too lazy to turn the water on and off in-between the chores I’m doing. With my new faucet, however, I’ve got a little toggle that lets me pause the flow of water coming from the sink and then lock it in. That way if we want to splash around a little during the bath, we can because I’m not wasting water AND I don’t have to turn the faucet completely off.

With just the push of the toggle, I get water when I want it. When I don’t, I can just toggle it to pause again until I come back. Yeah… I’ve got a friend who is a plumber and says I probably shouldn’t be doing this because I’m causing pressure on my plumbing, but for me it’s about establishing new habits. We now have a new bath habit and it’s awesome! I’m also working on a new habit of conserving water and that will help me walk my talk when it comes to the life lessons I’ll be teaching my daughter over time.

I can’t tell you enough how much I love my new pullout kitchen faucet and how it has improved bath time! If you’re tired of leaning over the tub and you don’t have one of these in the kitchen, then get one. It’s a lifesaver!

Buying a School Backpack for My Daughter

So I’m a previous mother of two, ages two and four respectively, and just recently I’ve received a new little blessing who is only a few months old. My oldest is starting school soon, and I was determined to find the perfect backpack for her.

The most important thing is to find something that will not only be comfortable for her, but also be something that she really likes and wants to wear. While she probably won’t think that it is a cool backpack when she turns 7 or 8, I do want her to think it is a cool backpack right now at five – and I’ll buy her another one next year or the year after, when she has had enough of it. But at the same time I wanted to make sure that it was also going to be durable and functional enough to at least last a year or two.

I obviously want my child to actually like the backpack just because that’s a good reason all by itself. But also, it’s really hard to get a backpack on a four year old in the morning when they really don’t want to wear it. This is especially hard to do really quickly.

But in my mind safety was first. I didn’t want the backpack to be made of anything that was dangerous! So I did a lot of looking around online to find out what was safe. The best places are review sites, but also consumer sites were good too. One rule of thumb I found that was very good is that a backpack should weigh only about 10 percent or so of the child’s body weight. So my child weighs about 40 pounds, so I had to make sure I got a backpack that only weighed about 4 pounds. You can go up to 15 percent but that’s at the very most.

Otherwise, I’d risk my child toppling over and hurting himself! I’m obviously not going to let that happen! Part of this is also that the backpack has to actually be able to hold whatever I need to send with my baby when they go to school. So the material has to be tough enough to hold it. A lot of the backpacks available for children are made of really cheap, really thin plastic. So if you want to send a lunch with anything even slightly solid in it, like a thermos, you risk it falling right out of the bottom of the backpack if the material isn’t solid. I read a lot of reviews for different backpacks until I was convinced that the one I got was made of durable material. After all, these things get dropped and thrown around sometimes, every once in a while they may bump into something sharp, If the backpack is made of plastic with the thickness and consistency of paper, it will just rip apart.

Once I had an idea of the kind of backpacks for school that would work for my daughter, I made sure to go to a local store that had some versions of it first so she could look at it and I could see whether she would like it. The last thing I wanted was to go through all that trouble and then have her hate it and throw it around

It turns out she really liked it though, so all was well!

What I Wish I Knew When I First Became A Mum

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Although I had attended all the antenatal classes during my first pregnancy to learn as much as I could about the birth and my new role as a mum, there were still a lot of surprises in store for me in the first few weeks following the birth of my child. The biggest shocks were how much I loved my new baby and the complete exhaustion I experienced. I also wish that I had realised in advance the physical effects the birth would have on me and how these could last for weeks.

Tips for New Mums

Now I have more experience of being a mum I know there are steps you can take to make those first few weeks a little easier so you can focus on bonding with your baby, getting into a routine and enjoying those precious first few weeks. The first tip is to rest whenever you can. If your baby is asleep, then you should rest too regardless of the time of day. Another good piece of advice is don’t be afraid to ask. Your midwife and health visitor will have been asked all sorts of questions so you must not be ashamed or embarrassed to ask for their advice and support. Finally, accept any offers of help you can and don’t try to be superwoman. If your partner offers to make the tea, let him. If your mum volunteers to clean the kitchen for you, then don’t be offended just take her up on the offer.

Tips for New Dads

Becoming a dad for the first time is sometimes an overwhelming experience. The pregnancy and birth are more about the mum than the dad and men are often surprised by the overnight impact that their little bundle has on their lives. Make the most of your new baby by booking time off work. This will give you time to bond with your baby and also makes you available to help and support mum. Another tip for new dads is to be patient and tolerant. The whole process of being pregnant, giving birth and adapting to becoming a mum, combined with exhaustion, invokes both physical and emotional changes in women. Your partner may be tearful and moody for a while but it will soon pass.

Tips for Friends and Family

The birth of anew baby is also an exciting time for friends and family. However, it is also important to remember that it is a special and private time for the new parents. Offer help and support but only give it if your offer is accepted. Telephone before visiting to make sure it is convenient and don’t stay too long. It is important that mum gets her rest.

What Mums Should Expect

From my experience I would say that new mums can expect a roller-coaster of emotions in the first weeks of being a mum. Everything is new and sometimes difficult, but learning how to look after your new baby is a wonderful time that you should make the most of. It can take time to feel confident of your skills as a parent, but caring for your baby soon feels like the most natural thing in the world.

The Second Time Around

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Becoming pregnant for the second time was just as exciting as the first time. I expected that everything would be just the same as my first experience of motherhood. However, I was surprised to find that although some things were the same, other aspects of being a parent were easier and others were harder.

Things That Are Easier Second Time Around

By the time you have your second baby you already have experience of caring for a new baby. You feel better prepared and know what to expect. It is much easier because you are not having to learn how to do each task from scratch. Another reason it is easier is that you worry less and feel more relaxed. With my first, I worried about all the different types of crying, every time my baby was sick I worried they were ill and if they held their breath when they were sleeping I completely panicked. Second time around I know all the little scary things that babies do and know that they are not really scary. I also knew more tips and tricks to cope with the difficult parts of parenting second time around, such as different ways to get a restless baby to sleep.

Things That Are Harder Second Time Around

The biggest difference I found with my second baby was that I had less time to rest or just sit nursing my newborn. With my first I could devote all my time to the baby and take naps whenever they did. When I had my second baby I had the additional responsibility of a toddler to care for. While my baby slept I would be feeding my toddler or trying to spend time with them so they would not become jealous of the new baby and feel like their mum was giving all her attention to someone new. This was particularly hard in the first week because I was still sore from giving birth. With a second baby people sometimes assume that you will need less support because you already have some experience of being a parent. The reverse is actually true because you now have double the responsibilities.

Things That Are Exactly the Same

I was worried when I was pregnant that I couldn’t possibly love another child as much as I loved my first-born child. I am happy to say that I felt the exact same surge of love when I was handed my second baby and an instant bond, just as I had with my first. The same feelings of love have continued for both children. The duties you have to do as a mum are also the same with your second baby. I found that I had a very similar routine of feeding, changing nappies, cuddling and trying to get the baby to sleep. These are the type of activities that are uniform whether it is you first, your second or even your sixth baby.

Immunizations for New Mums

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Shortly after the birth of each of my babies, my health visitor popped round to introduce herself. It was during this visit that I was told all about when my child would be due for their vaccinations and what they would protect my baby against. She also gave me some leaflets that outlined both the pros and cons of each of the vaccinations, so that I could make an informed choice about whether to vaccinate my child or not, and my baby’s health record. This record is used for tracking the babies weight and for keeping records of vaccinations and developmental checks.

Getting Your Baby Vaccinated

Your doctor’s surgery send you out an appointment letter for vaccinations several weeks in advance. These appointments are usually with the health visitor who will discuss the vaccination and any side effects with you, administer the vaccination, check on the general health of your baby and give you advice about care of your baby in the 24 hours following a vaccination.

A baby’s first vaccinations take pace at two months and three different vaccinations are administered. The first is a five-in-one vaccination that protects against tetanus, whooping cough, diphtheria, polio and haemophilus influenza (Hib). The other two vaccinations are the pneumococcal and rotavirus vaccines. At three months the five-in-one and rotavirus vaccinations are repeated along with a vaccination meningitis C. At four months the final dose of the five-in-one vaccination is given along with a repeat vaccination for pneumococcal.
A baby does not need a vaccination then until they reach their first birthday when they will have boosters for Hib and Meningitis C. They will also have the final dose of the pneumococcal vaccine and a measles, mumps and rubella vaccination (MMR). At two and three years children are invited for an annual flue vaccination. The final vaccinations are given at 3 years and 4 months, or around that time. These are the second MMR and a four-in-one vaccination for polio, diphtheria, tetanus and whooping cough.

Choosing to Consent to Vaccinations

I read through all of the information given to me by the health visitor about potential side effects associated with each of the vaccinations. Generally, these included a raised red lump in the area of the vaccination, irritability, fever and feeling generally unwell. I also read about the suspected link between the MMR vaccine and the development of autism. The potential side effects of the vaccinations seemed trivial when compared to the severity of the illnesses they would protect my baby against. When I looked into research about the link between vaccinations and autism I discovered that there has been no scientific evidence to prove this, only the opinions of individuals. The doctor who made this claim has since been struck off as a doctor and scientific studies into the claims his paper made found no link. I decided that the benefits of the vaccinations far outweigh any potential risks and consented to the vaccination of my baby. I’d encourage everyone to vaccinate their new born baby.

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Breast Feeding for New Mums

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Breastfeeding is the most natural thing in the world and I was keen to breastfeed with all three of my children. However, even though it is natural, that does not mean that it comes easily to many mothers and there are many difficulties you can face as a new breastfeeding mum. Thankfully, there are always people on hand to help you solve these problems and make your breastfeeding experience a good one. My experience of breastfeeding three children means I have learned some useful tips along the way.

Useful Breastfeeding Tips

  • It is important to sit or lie comfortably as this means you will get a better breastfeeding for your baby and avoid problems with your back.
  • Bring the baby to the breast, never the breast to the baby.
  • The baby’s mouth should be opened wide to latch on properly and there should be more of the lower part of the areola in their mouth than the upper part.
  • Hearing and seeing your baby swallowing rhythmically are signs that they are latched on well.
  • Make sure the baby gets the hind milk (hind milk is milk at the end of a feeding), as this is a nutritious part of their feed. Your baby will start off by sucking quickly and then move into a slower, longer suck. They may stop for a rest occasionally before continuing with their feed. When they stop, wind them and then try latching the baby back on to make sure they have everything they need.
  • If you have concerns about breastfeeding or are experiencing pain then speak to your midwife, health visitor, doctor or a breastfeeding advisor as they will be bale to give you pointers and support you.

My Experiences of Breastfeeding

As I have now breastfed three babies I have mixed experiences of breastfeeding. With my first baby I had some problems with latching on and because I did not seek help I ended up with mastitis, an infection of the breasts and nipples, that needed treatment wit antibiotics. My experience of breastfeeding with my second baby was completely different. The baby latched on straight away, feeding was completely pain free and I had no problems. All in all it was a complete breeze. When I had my third baby, there were no problems at first. Then my baby got thrush in his mouth. Not only did this pass through my baby’s digestive system giving the baby thrush in the nappy region, it also passed on to my nipples. This made breastfeeding extremely painful but I persevered while we were treated. The baby needed oral medication and a cream and I also had an anti-fungal cream for my nipples.

Diet While Breastfeeding

Even though I know it is hard to find time to eat properly when you are a busy new mum, it is important to make sure you have a healthy, balanced diet. I tried to make time to make sure I ate three meals a day and ate healthy snacks if I was hungry. I also made sure that I drank plenty of water to encourage my milk supply and stay hydrated. What you do not eat is almost as important as what you do eat when you are a breastfeeding mum. I tried to think of it as though I was still pregnant and thus avoided harmful things like drinking alcohol.

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Bath Time for New Mums

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Bathing your baby can be nerve racking the first few times you do it. However, it will soon become a fun part of caring for your baby. I love bath time, as my children all seem to really enjoy it. So, it is not just about keeping them clean, but also about having some fun interaction with your baby.

Bath Time Tips

  • Get everything ready beforehand. There is nothing worse than having a wet slippery baby in your arms and then realizing you do not have a towel to hand.
  • Involve your partner and older children. It is a great time to bond as a family.
  • When your baby is small, make sure their head and neck is fully supported.
  • Only use bath products intended for babies to avoid irritating the skin and eyes.
  • If possible, when the baby is newborn you should use a baby bath rather than the family bath. This will avoid straining your back when leaning over.

Handy Items

  • As your baby grows they will probably enjoy having some bath tops to play with. Make sure you buy age appropriate toys by checking the packaging. Most babies will enjoy toys that pour or squirt and are colourful.
  • A non-slip mat can be useful, especially when your baby starts sitting or trying to pull themselves up against things. Similarly, a baby bath seat can be useful as your child can sit up independently in the water.
  • Of course you still cannot leave them alone in the bath, but it does free up your hands to play with them or grab any equipment you need.
  • Once you have a baby you have a lot of extra equipment and accessories that need storing. In terms of bath time, a bath tidy that sticks to the wall is a good way of keeping toys tidy. A cupboard or small shelving unit is ideal for keeping your baby’s towels and toiletries on.

Bath Safety

The safety and well-being of your baby is paramount at all times and bath time poses a number of risks. Here are some tips to keep your baby safe;

  • Put cold water into the bath first as this will reduce the risk of your baby or toddler being scalded.
  • Never under any circumstances leave your baby alone in the bath, even if they are able to sit up unaided.
  • If you have forgotten to fetch a towel, then take the baby with you. Far better the baby is wet and cold than drowned.
  • Do not leave the water running once the baby is in the bath, especially the hot tap.
  • Do not add too much water to the bath. A newborn only needs about five inches of water and once a baby can sit up they need it no higher than waist height.

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