As a new mom, it can be overwhelming to juggle feedings and diaper changes for your infant with household responsibilities and family life. Don’t let the stress of your new responsibilities override the joy of cuddling and caring for your new baby. Instead, jump-start each morning with a structured routine that benefits both of you.
Time is often a challenge when packing the diaper bag in the morning and getting yourself organized. Be realistic about the time you need to prepare for the day, suggests Rosie Pope, New York-based parenting expert and founder of the Rosie Pope Maternity line. If you like to sleep a little later, then pack materials and prep breakfast the night before, she says. “It’s important that we figure out our own timeframe with getting ready so that the stress of rushing around doesn’t impact the fun morning we could potentially have with the kids,” Pope says.
Adapt the Schedule
Your child will likely help you determine the routine based on her feeding and bath preferences. For example, if your child is a messy eater, plan to get her dressed after breakfast to avoid dressing twice, Pope advises. If she is cranky without food or prefers a feeding right away, plan for breakfast or a morning bottle or nursing session first thing.
Evaluate Your Home’s Layout
Save yourself time in the morning by evaluating the flow of your home. Minimize the amount of up and down stairs you have to travel as you may have a child on your hip, Pope recommends. Keep toothbrushes and hairbrushes handy in various rooms so you can easily get these tasks completed without herding your child to an upstairs bathroom, too. Also, find a flow to getting dressed to breakfast to playing in a way that feels most natural for the layout of your house or apartment.
Almost 60 percent of mothers with infants under a year old either had jobs or searched for work in 2013, notes 2014 release from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. If you are one of those working moms, if possible, dedicate time before your child wakes to pack lunches, diaper bags and gather work materials, Pope suggests. Your routine may include drinking a morning cup of coffee, showering and dressing, and preparing breakfast or a bottle before your baby opens his eyes. Once you are ready, it frees up time to devote to your baby’s needs without rushing to find matching shoes and put the finishing touches on your makeup.