There are a lot of important things to do when you’re pregnant — endless checklists, hospital appointments, prenatal classes, finding childcare, etc. But in the flurry of all that activity, be sure to make time for yourself. Your whole world will change when you have a baby, so now is the time to relax and relish some “me” time. Here are a few ideas to get you started.
Go on a date
When you have kids, you’ll still go on dates to fancy restaurants, but you now have the added expense of a babysitter and that gnawing worry that you forget to tell the babysitter something or your baby is crying in misery without you. My advice is book that posh restaurant you’ve always wanted to go to, get the dessert and enjoy a relaxing date with your partner without any worry or stress.
Now is a great time to book a prenatal massage or more than one if you can afford it. It’s not just for the relaxation, it relieves stress and helps with all that backache you get from carrying around a growing baby. It’s also a good time to book a pedicure. During your third trimester, your feet will be puffy and sore; a pedicure is the perfect treat to make you feel better.
Take a short day-trip somewhere to explore a new café or an art gallery. These spontaneous trips are harder when you have a new baby because of the sheer amount of planning and stuff you need to get out the door. Enjoy sauntering out the door at the last minute and go somewhere fun and new with just your purse.
You may have heard it a million times, but make sure to act on it and enjoy a lie-in from time to time. Don’t get too caught up in the frenzy of nesting; there will be plenty of time to order cute crib mobiles from Target when your baby is here.
A lot of new mums worry that they don’t have all the stuff but remember: Your newborn needs very little, so try to relax and enjoy this peaceful time. Instead of schlepping to the store, order things online and enjoy a nice long nap instead.
See a concert
Meet your friends, dance and have fun. Your baby is well-protected and cozy in the womb and will enjoy a little movement and music. It’s hard to make time to see all your friends when you’re a new mom, so use this time to keep in touch.
Go to a movie
Going to the cinema with a newborn is hard. Sure, there are cry baby shows where you can bring your baby, but it’s not the same. Going to the cinema without kids is a luxurious experience. Book the best seats, buy the popcorn and stretch out.
Invest in your wardrobe
Most women (ambitiously) think that as soon as the baby is born we can toss away all those well-worn maternity clothes. The fact is, you’ll probably be wearing those maternity clothes for a good few months after the actual birth.
Now that you have a little time on your hands, invest in some sensible and comfortable shoes and maternity clothes that are will make you feel good after you’ve had the baby. Buy some new accessories that will make those jaded maternity clothes feel a little more stylish post-baby.
Indulge in a hobby
If you love salsa dancing, gardening, creative writing, whatever it may be, now is the time to double down and enjoy that hobby. When the new baby arrives, you might have plans to continue with your hobbies as normal, but babies have a way of absorbing every spare moment of your time.
So, enjoy and make the most of this precious time.
It’s the dreaded word that tired parents don’t want to hear, but colic is more common than you think. It affects about one in four babies!
What is it? Colic is defined as crying for three or more hours a day for three or more days a week for three or more weeks. Thankfully, the condition usually resolves itself within the first three to four months but while it’s going on — hold tight!
Many people who have colicky babies swear by the book “The Happiest Baby on the Block.”
The author, Dr. Harvey Karp, advises the use of the 5 S’s for soothing colicky babies: swaddling, shushing, side lying, swinging and sucking.
Dr. Karp recently launched a bed called the SNOO, which he says does all the hard work for you by providing white noise, a tight swaddle and swinging motion to soothe a cranky baby. But note that it’s quite costly, selling for more than $1,000 dollars. The good news: You can always get the book from the library and use the 5 S’s with a cheap white noise machine and a good swaddle to calm your baby. (It worked for me!)