Having a new baby in the house is a real joy, all those “firsts” we look forward to, the peaceful times of cuddles on the couch and quiet walks before bed. But having a new baby also makes you surprisingly busy with all the care they require. Doing a little preparing and planning ahead can mean the difference between chaos and serenity. Some quick simple tips to help you save time and get some “me time” in are set out below.
1. Meal plan
I have never been able to meal plan for a month at a time like some families do, but even if you plan 3 days in a row its 3 days you won’t be standing in front of the fridge thinking “What am I going to cook for dinner?”. It will also mean that you’ll have all the ingredients for your 3 meals so no rushing to the shops right at witching hour.
2. Presort your washing
We have 3 laundry baskets in the laundry, one for lights, one for darks, one for coloureds. Its easier to see when there’s a load ready rather than sorting through and realising you only have 4 pieces of each and not enough for a full load.
3. Shop online
Use the big supermarket’s online shopping to your advantage and have your shopping packed and home delivered for you once a fortnight.
4. Shower at night
Days are busy, babies make it hard. Shower at night, its just easier.
5. Store sheet sets inside one of the pillow cases in the bedroom they belong to
I got this one from the Master herself, Martha Stewart, so you know it’s good. Not only does it make the sense, when you get 5 mins you can whip on a clean set of sheets and as you know, there’s no sleep better than the first night on clean sheets sleep.
7. Get up earlier
This might seem like a very unhelpful tip, particularly if you haven’t had a good nights sleep in what seems like forever. But if you can get up even fifteen minutes before the earliest riser in your house, you have what’s called quiet time. Yes have a hot cup of tea and finish it all before it goes cold.
8. Pack at night
Going out tomorrow? Prepack tonight. Have it all ready – nappies, wipes, snacks, dummy, tissues, water bottles all packed and sitting by the door with the keys for tomorrow.
9. Learn to say No
Don’t be pulled into every volunteering opportunity, every social gathering and every local event. Decide the things that are truly important to you and your family and make them a priority. Say “no” politely but firmly to everything else.
10. Learn to say Yes
When people come over to visit and cuddle the baby and they say “Can I do anything for you?” say yes. Keep a list of things you need/want done on the fridge and show them that. Or just ask outright – I’d love some help with my washing/lawn/kitchen/dinner tonight. People care about you and want to help, so let them.