I am no expert with babies and children. Here, I am just sharing some tips that I found during my experiences…
1. Enjoy your baby as much as you can for the first 2 months. Just go with the flow and don’t be too harsh on yourself or judge yourself too much.
2. Get yourself a lactation specialist right in the beginning if you are going to breast feed.
3. Get a midwife who you can call in to consult with you during the first few months when you have no idea what you are doing.
4. If you have a boy, put a facecloth over his winkie for the first few months when you change is nappy! Unless you want a golden shower 🙂
5. Wear an apron when changing your newborn’s nappy at night in the first few months. In the middle of the night when they have a wind under their poo, they can spread the love everywhere!
6. Set up a support group of mommy friends who you can contact, even if it is just to swop stories so you don’t have to think you are the worst parent in the world.
7. Communicate to your partner! Lack of communication leads to a whole bunch of issues and problems where you both feel alienated. If you want or need something, just say it.
8. Don’t try do everything on your own. Accept help from friends and family. It will save your sanity.
9. Hear the advice from friends and family but only listen to the advice that resonates with you and that you are comfortable with. Disregard the rest otherwise it can become overwhelming.
10. TAKE TIME OUT FOR YOURSELF….I still don’t do this nearly enough!
11. Read the Baby Sense book, then put it away and unlearn what you read. Just keep it in the back of your mind otherwise you can become anal (advice another mommy friend gave me and she was right).
12. Don’t read too many different books for the same thing. It just confuses you.
13. Colic remedies do not work. Probably because we are treating the wrong issue. My paed told me that if something seems to be working for awhile and then stops working, it doesn’t work.
14. With number 10 in mind, you need to learn through trial and error. I tried all the colic remedies only to figure this out at the end of it all. You try them anyway with the hope that they might just work.
15. When weaning your child onto solids, give the cereal a skip. Start with fruits and veggies first. So much more nutrition that they need.
16. Get yourself some help when it comes to feeding and sleeping routines. I can highly recommend www.jennisays.com I never had to wonder or question what came next. I bought her routines every single month from when Quinn was 3 months until he was a year old. You don’t have to guess anymore when to feed, how much to feed, etc.
17. Sleep training at 3 months (unless your baby starts sleeping through the night on his/her own obviously) will save your life. The longer you wait, the harder it gets because the habits are then formed and more difficult to break.
18. Johnson’s wet-wipes are the business!
19. Don’t make a big fuss if your child falls and smacks his/her head. The more of a fuss you make the more they are going to realise it is supposed to hurt.
20. Read the book Raising Happy Healthy Children. This book came in extremely handy when it comes to discipline. We bought it at a talk we attended by Super Granny (Andalene Salvesen). Her system works if you commit and do it correctly. (The only piece of advice I do not agree with in this book is the part where they tell you always to eat carbs and animal protein together – I will go into this later on a post about Nutrition)
21. Always do what works for YOU and YOUR baby and what you are comfortable with.
22. Read up on vaccinations before just accepting them as the norm.
23. Laugh as much as you can with your baby. It’s not meant to be that serious.
24. Don’t take yourself or anything too seriously. Your baby can pick up on every single emotion you experience. Trust me!
25. Watch your words around your baby…they cannot filter out the negative stuff until they are much older than 3. This is not always easy, but try as much as you can.
26. Having a baby is not a competition. They all do things in their own time. Do not try force any milestones to happen and don’t stress if something happens a little later than a friend’s baby. It will happen. (Trust me again, you don’t want them to start walking too soon)
27. There is no such thing as a perfect parent, but you are the perfect parent for YOUR baby.
28. Collect the samples of baby products. These come in handy when you are travelling and you can refill them.
And the biggest one of all…
Do not for one moment think that you have everything under control…just as you think you do, the rules change. They keep changing so don’t get too used to things the way they are 🙂