Our lovely little boy, Will, was born on Feb 17th after a mere 6 hours of labour. He arrived into the world healthy, hollering, and as long and skinny as a salami. In the month and a half since, he's become more adorable, more alert and interactive... though still not mastering the art of smiling. (He gently meows, though, so that's tiding us over for cute-factor.) ;-) We love him so, and are eager to get to know him more as the months and years pass.
So, what have I learned in the last month? Here goes:
- There's a certain circle of Heaven reserved for people who, when visiting a family with a new baby, bring food. Bonus points if they do a bit of housework while there, or leave after half an hour.
- Making and freezing food (lasagne, chili, pasta sauce, quiche) during the last few months of pregnancy has been a lifesaver on nights when I'm too tired to cook anything.
- Second-hand and consignment are stores are AWESOME, since anything "baby" is WAY overpriced (and there's no guarantee baby will like that vibrating seat, or whatever).
- A yoga ball is a good investment. It's useful for pregnancy exercise, labour positions, and for bouncing a fussy baby to sleep. (The $29 Zellers kind is fine, but make sure it's big enough to sit on comfortably.)
- When browsing through adorable baby clothes, seasons matter. As in, DO NOT buy that sweet little summer outfit, sized 0-3 months, for a baby born in February.
- In fact, resist purchasing 0-3 month clothes altogether. You don't need many outfits in this size (6-10?), since the kid is neither mobile enough nor spewing enough to dirty his clothes that quickly.
- Baby clothes that do not snap at the legs/crotch for easy diaper access may be cute, but are of highly limited functionality. Avoid purchasing these.
- Make sure you have 2-3 zip hoodies for the kid, to throw on before going outside. (This is MUCH easier than changing a whole outfit!)
- While pregnant, make a list of baby-friendly stuff to do (such as mother-baby groups) that will get you out of the house. This will be a godsend when you crave adult human interaction during the daytime.
- Best books: "The Thinking Woman's Guide to a Better Birth" on getting literate about common labour intervention practises; "Happiest Baby on the Block" for tips on how to settle a fussy newborn, and my favourite, "If Your Kid Eats this Book, Everything Will Still be Okay", which tells you what kind of baby ooze from which orifices have what level of urgency. Most of it assures you that everything is fine, which I love.
Next up will be "Stuff I Learned about Breastfeeding"... stay tuned!