Welcoming a new baby in the family takes a lot of prep work!
It can be stressful, and it can also be challenging. Especially if the new baby is going to be welcomed by their siblings too.
Let’s take a look at some of the things you can do to be prepared to welcome a new baby into your family!
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Welcome To The Family, New Baby!
Apart from eagerly awaiting to hold the baby in your arms finally, you need to prepare a couple of things to stay ready for when you bring your little newborn home.
You may already have all of the baby essentials covered, especially if you have been clever and organized baby showers and parties! This to check on some of the new Dad must-haves too, in case you missed anything…
If you have a big pile of gifts, take some time to go through them all to see if there is anything that you still need to buy or produce (if you are the resourceful type!)
Here is a list of all the things you need in place to ensure that welcoming your baby into the family goes smoothly.
Get Nursery Items in Check
It’s never too early to decorate the baby’s nursery, especially if it’s the first baby. If you already know baby’s sex, you can freely decide on the color; maybe you can go with pink, blue, or even neutral greens, beige and yellow.
Ensure that the nursery is airy and open, and has a window. It is crucial for your baby’s room to have natural lighting and efficient ventilation.
Although there is no restriction or limit for what you can include in your nursery, make sure that the basics are present. These include:
- A crib for the baby to sleep in
- Station designated for changing diapers
- A comfy chair where you can nurse and settle your baby
- A spacious wardrobe for you to store baby’s clothes and additional items
Prepare the newborn’s sleeping arrangement
When preparing for the baby to sleep on their own, you can choose between having a crib, a bassinet, or a cradle.
Although it’s months away to when your baby finally starts moving while lying down or rolling over, it’s safest to let the baby sleep in a crib.
You should be extra careful when looking out for a crib and make sure it meets all the safety regulations. In case parents decide to place your baby’s crib inside their room for about 12 or so months, it is advisable to consider the size of the crib as well.
A cradle might be helpful for babies that require a little help when sleeping. This is because the swaying motions can rock and soothe baby to sleep.
Hammocks and cradles help to calm babies, as long as they are safe and secure.
If you are more likely to move your ‘bundle of joy’ around the house from one room to the other, a bassinet is your best choice. A bassinet is usually light and easily portable but can get unusable after about 6-7 months as it is small.
Until your baby is about 6 months old, breast/formula milk will be the only food they need. However, Mom might need sufficient breast pads to prevent leakage from ruining her clothing.
Also, invest in a quality breast pump and packaging bottles for the new-born for when you have to be out of the house for some time.
If for any reason you need to start formula feeding, there are a variety of instant formulas that are suitable for babies to start.
One tip I have is that you do not stock up too much on formula before your baby is here. I have a couple of friends that stocked up on formula only to find out their new baby was intolerant!
As soon as you confirm your baby can handle the formula of your choice, then you can bulk buy.
Unlike feeding formulas, it’s never too early to start stocking up on diapers. This will be one of the first items your baby will use as soon when they get home, and boy will you know about it!
Bulk buying will not only help you save money, but also will save you the inconvenience of dashing to the store late in the night. Also, stock up on other essential items:
- Soft wipes
- Baby powder
- Diaper rash creams
Cloth diapers are an excellent alternative to disposable ones as you can find some that are soft on your baby’s skin, and allow reuse, which helps to keep the budget down considerably.
However, with cloth diapers, you need to continually keep an eye on any signs of wetness, and handle careful washing and drying.
Since the stuff that your cute adorable baby will deposit on the nappies will have a remarkably strong whiff, ensure to get a diaper basket with a lid as you store them for washing later.
Involve the older siblings
All children love attention, and for some siblings, it can be difficult bringing in a new-born that will get all the parents’ attention.
They can feel as though all the gifts and affection are only for their baby brother or sister, and can end up feeling down or even resentful. Keep an eye out for your kids rejecting you because you spend too much time with the baby (in their opinion!)
When preparing to welcome the newborn, ensure that the elder siblings get adequate attention. Get them some gifts; a trip to the park, ice cream or a new toy are a great way to show them some love.
House rules for the elder siblings are also a great idea to ensure that everyone will coexist happily. The older siblings need to understand that they should not interfere with your baby’s sleep and should not wake them up to play!
The siblings can play at a spot far from where the new baby sleeps to avoid interference. Set up a playing area that is far from where you would typically lay your baby to sleep.
Give them other things to do as they wait for the new-born to wake up, such as playing games, reading a book, or learning.
Although it will take some time before your little one can start crawling or even walking, it’s never too early to child-proof your home.
Pay immediate attention to open electrical output and sharp edges on stairs or tables first. Eventually, work on the lower windows, drawers, and open doors.
Time to check out ways you can toddler-proof your home if you have not already done so!
Throw a homecoming party
What better way to celebrate the coming of your new baby than inviting the whole family.
Ask a couple of people to your house and make merry out of it. You might get a few more gifts out of it too!
Be careful though, always check with Mom first! Mom has been through childbirth and might not want a ton of people descending upon your home to celebrate.
How do I prepare my older baby for a new baby?
Nurture excitement in the elder kids by asking for their advice regarding caring for the baby, such as what color of the shirt the baby should wear. Ask them to join you when preparing for the baby, such as when cleaning up or stocking up baby items.
You can also read them stories that show them their new roles. Funny stories that show them the joy of being elder siblings are a great idea.
Acknowledge the older baby’s feelings and safeguard them, so they may feel that the new baby is not a threat.
- Will the new-born wake up the toddler?
It is usual for newborns to wake up during the night several times, mainly to feed.
Sometimes, as you try soothing them back to sleep, you might hear cries from the next room as your toddler awakes due to interrupted sleep.
I don’t need to tell you that babies can have loud, ear-piercing screams, right? Your baby’s loud crying in the night might be a worry for your toddler. Always go to the toddler and reassure them. Be gentle and consistent and train them to soothe themselves back to sleep.
- How do you congratulate someone on their new baby?
For anyone, a new baby is an accomplishment and the mark of one of the most exciting and memorable moments in life.
If you know a new Mom or Dad, they will highly appreciate it if you send them a message of congratulations and best wishes for the new baby.
Oh, and a gift will be very useful too! Then in with the new parents to see what they need. Check out my list of things a new Dad needs.
- How can I help my sibling with a new baby?
If your sibling is about to become a parent, especially for the first time, they may require a lot of your help. It is your job to support and spoil them as they enter this new phase in life.
A gift such as a shopping hamper or a package of new-born provisions such as diapers can go a long way into easing them into easing their new journey.
Help them with cleaning up in readiness for the baby and in stocking up for the needs of a new Baby.
- Can a new-born and a toddler share a room?
There is no right or wrong decision as to whether siblings should share a room; it all comes down to the space that the family has. In about two-thirds of homes, siblings share a room.
This helps them develop a communal mentality as they share their toys, space, experience, and parents.
The coming of a new baby to the family can be a memorable moment for parents, its siblings, and other relatives. A new baby requires intensive care, and a parent will use all the help he or she can get.
Getting prepared involves setting up the baby’s needs and even adjusting the other siblings to accept and help with taking care of the new-born.
Everything will fall to place as they grow.