When mothers bring their newborns home from the hospital, they need to adjust to lifestyles that are busier than ever before. Some moms rely on clever life hacks to create more free time while they are caring for their bouncing baby boys and girls.
Any new mom who wants to open up more free time during the first weeks and months at home with a baby will appreciate this list. It's filled with helpful tips from mothers who've learned the very best time-saving techniques.
From creating mommy "busy bags" filled with things to work on during rare free time, to multiple changing tables for faster diaper-changing and beyond, the smartest tips for creating more time makes it simpler to pack a lot of activities into a single day.
New moms often feel like there aren't enough hours in the day to take care of everything. These suggestions will make it simpler for women to be productive, rest a bit and focus most of their time on baby care and bonding with their infants.
Whether a mom is caring for a first baby or is an old hand when it comes to baby care, the advice of this list will be helpful. It's all about maximizing free time by getting things done in the most efficient way possible.
20 Make Mommy "Busy Bags"
Moms have so many tasks to deal with, from doing their finances to writing thank you cards to making grocery shopping lists. In fact, the list of things to do is endless and always changing.
Smart new moms create "busy bags" that are supremely portable and then take their busy bags with them wherever they go! If you want to make your own busy bag, choose a roomy tote with a zipper, which may double as a diaper bag if you want it to. Then, stock it with current projects, from knitting to paper for "to-do-lists" to a checkbook and pen.
According to Teach Me Mommy, a busy bag is a new mom essential.
19 Stay on Strict Schedules
Time management is key, so this is the right time to put together a smart and realistic schedule and stick to it. When you get into a routine, it'll be easier to parcel out time for everything that you need to do.
According to Good Housekeeping, investing in a paper planner (a WhoMi is one example) will help you to keep your schedule on track. There are also electronic calendars which allow moms to consolidate a host of schedules in one convenient place. Cozi and Google offer these digital calendars.
18 Set Limits with Older Children
Older kids may find that their lives change quite a lot when a new baby is in the mix. Sometimes, older children become rather demanding, because they're jealous of the new baby or just want more time with mom than she is able to give them while she cares for a newborn. For this reason, it's smart to set limits with older children.
According to Positive Parenting Connections, it's wise to schedule short blocks of time to connect with an older child. Taking ten minutes per day, a few times each day, and using it to enjoy quality time with an older child should go a long way in terms of preventing or stopping any "acting out".
17 Streamline Their Lifestyles
When you're home with a new baby, prioritize baby care. Everything else should take a backseat. Focus on streamlining your lifestyle. For example, get rid of plants in your home, so you won't have to water them. De-cluttering, before the baby comes, will also be helpful, as there will be less to dust.
Also, think about your systems for getting things done and the way that your home is set up. Are your systems and setup as streamlined as they could be? If the answer is no, make changes.
According to She Knows, investing a baby carrier which allows you to clean while you're carrying your infant will be another great way to make life easier.
16 Use Disposable Plates & Plastic Cutlery During Week 1
One secret which may turn off eco-mindful, but appeal to other types of new moms, is relying on paper plates and plastic cutlery during the first week at home with a baby.
The first week is tough. A lot of moms have anxiety because they aren't used to caring for newborns. Since they have so much on their plates, brand-new moms need to facilitate baby care any way that they can. Paper plates and plastic cutlery mean no dishes to wash.
To minimize the environmental impact of this time-saving trick, LiveStrong recommends sourcing out paper plates made from fibers that come from sustainably managed woodlands. Disposable utensils made from plant starch are also available.
15 Shop for Food Just Once Per Week
Moms who are home with a new baby should try to be efficient when it comes to shopping. They should get all of the groceries that they need once a week, so they have fully-stocked kitchens.
According to Digital Trends, the Amazon Fresh option is another time-saver for busy mothers. This grocery delivery service will require an Amazon Prime membership, which you probably have already. Check online to see if Amazon Fresh is available in your locality. If it isn't, there's probably a local grocery store that will deliver for a fair rate.
14 Use Dry Shampoo & Other Quick Beauty Fixes
Styling hair from wet to dry usually takes fifteen to twenty minutes. Since most new moms struggle to find time to even take a shower, beauty rituals often fall by the wayside during the first weeks at home with babies.
One trick to keep a blowout looking good for longer is dry shampoo. It takes the oil out of the roots of the hair and gives a hairstyle a fresher look. Models and actresses rely on dry shampoo to look good with less effort. New moms can use it, too.
According to Vogue, the most impressive dry shampoo is La Tierra Sagrada, which is a high-end formula. Plenty of cheaper drugstore varieties are also available.
13 Set Up Two Diaper Changing Stations
If you live in a home with an upstairs/downstairs, you'll benefit from setting up two "diaper changing stations", rather than just one. There will always be times when it's easier to change a baby outside of his or her nursery. For example, if you're downstairs in the living room, it'll be so easy to use a downstairs changing table, rather than carrying your infant upstairs.
According to Project Nursery, you should shop around carefully for changing tables with high quality and the right features. They should be the perfect height for you, so they are comfortable to utilize. Also, they should offer storage space for diapers, baby wipes, and diaper rash creams.
12 Organize Social Activities
It may be harder to socialize with a new baby, but it's not impossible and scheduling a bit of socialization once per week, if only for an hour, will be a great way to ensure that you don't feel too isolated as you embrace life as a new mom. A weekly "standing date" for tea or a movie with a friend will give you something to look forward to and you won't need to waste time trying to coordinate schedules with friends or family.
According to Verily Mag, moms should make peace with the fact that their social lives will be different after childbirth, but also make an effort to get out there when they can.
11 Hold Weekly Family Meetings
When the whole family gets together once a week, it's a good chance to plan things, talk about what is and isn't working and get on the same page. A weekly family meeting is also a nice tradition that may be carried on when kids are older. The meeting could be in the kitchen over snacks or it could be held in your bedroom, while your nurse your baby or give him or her a bottle.
According to Psychology Today, family meetings should have an upbeat tone and no one person should be controlling things. A weekly family meeting will help you to get organized for the busy week ahead.
10 Outsource The Laundry For a While
When you're home with a new baby, you're going to be tired a lot. Babies need frequent feedings during the night and a lot of new moms battle exhaustion regularly until their infants are old enough to sleep for more hours at a time. Since you will be dealing with fatigue, why not make your own life easier by dropping laundry off and enjoying a little "wash and fold" service? Sure, it may cost a little more, but it's a temporary fix for an overloaded schedule.
According to the Business Insider, outsourcing laundry is way more affordable than most people expect. In the USA, it usually costs 80 cents per pound at most.
9 Take Help When It's Offered
If you're one of those independent people who rarely asks for help, you may want to change a little bit in the weeks and months following childbirth. These weeks and months are the right time to let other people help you.
There are probably people around you who love you and are more than willing to show their love by helping you with babysitting or errands. Later on, when you're not as tired and your baby is older, you may pay it forward.
According to Design Sponge, there are tons of amazing and creative ways to say "thank you" to those who help you at this special time. Be sure to use them.
8 Hold "Meet and Greet" Parties for Their New Babies
Moms who want to introduce their babies to their social circles may save time and energy by inviting a bunch of people over to see the baby at one casual "meet and greet" event. According to Huffington Post, inviting some people over the meet the baby around week two may be a good idea, as long as your fatigue isn't too extreme.
Base the "meet and greet" date on your own energy level. When you don't need separate meetings for every person who wants to see your baby, you'll have more free time.
7 Do 3 "To-do List" Tasks Every Day
According to Becoming Minimalist, you'll get more done when you keep it simple. Moms who focus on completing just three tasks from their to-do lists each day won't overburden themselves. Instead, they will make slow and steady progress, while still having plenty of time for their babies.
Being at home with a newborn is a special time. It's not a time to push yourself too hard when it comes to being productive. What matters is being with the baby. So, keep your to-do list short, but actually, follow through on three tasks each day.
6 Make Meal Plans
If you're not the super-organized, Martha Stewart type, the concept of making meal plans may seem like a hassle or an outright bore. However, it's still something that you should consider. You need proper nutrition while you're caring for your baby, especially if you are nursing. Without this nutrition, you may find that you feel more tired than you ever have. Also, meal plans make it easier to do the weekly grocery shopping. You'll know what you need to buy to make the planned meals.
If you're willing to spend more money to automate the process, consider ordering meals from a service, such as MaMeal Delivery or Goodfood.
5 Use Pumping Bras for Nursing
According to Motherandbaby.co.uk, pumping bras give nursing mothers the ability to pump milk without using their hands. When you choose a specialty bra for nursing, expressing milk won't be so hard on your arms. Plus, you'll be able to take care of tasks while your mother's milk is being pumped.
When shopping around, look for a pumping bra that gets great reviews. Also, think about fit. The garment should be very comfortable to wear. This bra won't be as fashionable as others in your wardrobe, but it will make things easier for you.
4 Lay Out Outfits the Night Before
Some new moms need to go back to work fairly soon after their babies are born. Moms who are heading back to their workplaces have more challenges. They need to look polished, even though they have almost no free time to plan their work wardrobes.
The best solution for working moms is to lay out clothes the night before. Preparing outfits in advance, while you're fully awake in the evening, is so much easier than trying to decide what to wear in the morning when you're groggy and/or cranky. According to Thejournal.ie, showering the night before will also be a smart strategy that makes mornings easier.
3 Bathe with The Baby
To bathe safely with your baby, you'll need a helper, such as a partner or someone else you're very comfortable with. Your partner may hand the baby to you when you're in the water and take the baby out when you are wet, with slippery hands.
According to Mom Tricks, babies may begin having showers or baths with moms after the babies' umbilical cords have fallen off. Prior to that, infants should have sponge baths. Be sure to use baby-safe bath and shower products.
2 Do Lunches Instead Of Lengthy Dinners
Going out to dinner is fun because it's typically such a non-rushed experience. People may linger for hours over appetizers, entrees, and desserts. Since you're pressed for time, due to baby care, you'll find that lunches are a better way to socialize than suppers. Lunches usually don't exceed one hour in length, even at better eateries. When you're ordering a quick lunch, bear in mind that, according to Parents.com, you need lots of calcium, magnesium, and iron. Order accordingly.
1 Rely on Baby Monitors
Use high technology to your advantage by finding a superb baby monitor that allows you to be in another part of your home, taking care of things, while you keep an eye on (or listen to) your newborn. The latest systems have cameras, as well as audio, and are typically "plug and play", which means that they are incredibly easy to set up.
According to BabyCenter, models with camera cost more, so consider whether a video is needed, or whether audio is enough for you. Also, be aware that digital designs offer more data security than analog models.
References: Teach-me-mommy.com, Goodhousekeeping.com, Positiveparentingconnections.com, Sheknows.com, Livestrong.com, Digitaltrends.com, Vogue.com, Projectnursery.com, Verilymag.com, Psychologytoday.com, Businessinsider.com, Huffingtonpost.com, Mamealdelivery.com, Motherandbaby.co.uk, Thejournal.ie, Momtricks.com, Parents.com, Babycenter.com