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5 Ways to Incite Romance After Baby

Making time for your partner after baby

The arrival of your newest little one is an adjustment for the whole family. Suddenly your old routine gets completely flipped around by a small, sweet, snuggly baby. When it comes to romance, a new baby can actually be a great time for you and your partner to work on ways to incite romance after baby.

Talk About It

You’ve heard it before, but communication truly is key in relationships. Before baby comes, have the discussion with your partner about how you want to continue making time for them post-baby. Brainstorm some ideas that will work for you, and think through ways you can both try them when the baby gets here. If that ship has already sailed, you can still bring it up to your partner. Every couple is different, and so are solutions for finding time for romance after baby arrives.

You can bridge the conversation with things like, “how can we spend some more time romantic together?” and “let’s find a way to incorporate romance again.”

Avoid phrases like “I need you to give me more attention” or “why aren’t we romantic anymore?”. These can incite feelings of guilt and resentment in your partner. Rest assured that every couple has their period of adjustment to find new expressions of romance after baby that work for them.

Stick to the Plan

If you and your partner make plans to spend time together, at times it is going to be tempting to cancel. Things come up, it’s hard to leave the house and making time for each other takes more work than it used to. However, you need follow through, and show each other that spending quality time is important. Your relationship and well-being will benefit from the investment.

Short and Sweet

In the first few months and weeks, romance after baby can be extremely hard to achieve. Plan activities that take you and your partner out of the house for small increments of time. Taking the baby for a walk in the stroller during her nap time is a great way to check in and chat with your spouse. Enjoying a cup of coffee or a glass of wine is also a great way to reconnect without being away for too long. Take up your relatives on the offer to babysit, or hire a sitter for an hour and half. Romance after baby doesn’t have to mean dinner and a long movie.

5 Minutes a Day

Try incorporating the 5 minutes a day rule. For just 5 minutes each day, sit down and check in with your partner. Try to be completely present and listen when they speak. Use this time to speak up about any thing that’s on your mind, or even to plan your next date night. Try to do this when the baby is asleep so your attention isn’t diverted. Everyone can fit in 5 minutes of romance after baby.

Small Gestures

Is there a little something that you did for your partner pre-baby that you can bring back now? They will appreciate the thoughtfulness and reminder of the love you strongly share. Write a post-it note, give a five minute shoulder massage, cook dinner, call for no reason. It’s the little things that truly count when it comes to romance after baby.

Four Galentine’s Day Activities for Mom

Four Galentine’s Day Activities for Mom

Four Galentine's Day Activities for Mom

After a seemingly endless first month of the year, February is here! And the first fun holiday after New Years is here with it, Valentine’s Day. However, the better yet lesser-known holiday is, Galentine’s Day. Galentine’s day, the day before Valentine’s Day, is a time to eat your favorite chocolate, buy something pink, and smother your mom-friends with LOVE. We like to refer to Galentine’s Day as “Valentine’s Day for Mom”. As February is the month of LOVE itself, we are giving you four ideas for Galentine’s Day Activities for Mom.

Galentine’s Day was born in 2017 from the sitcom Parks and Recreation, when fictional character Leslie Knope (Amy Poehler) celebrates her annual Galentine’s Day party for all her gal-friends on February 13th. Who doesn’t love an excuse to celebrate with your girl-only squad on Galentine’s Day?

Galentine’s Idea #1

Four Galentine's Day Activities for Mom

In a true Parks and Rec fashion, grab your Galentine’s Day crew and do a traditional (as of 2017) waffle breakfast. Whether you Amazon Prime a waffle maker and host it at your house, or meet at your local brunch-ery, breakfast foods are always a sure-bet — the ideal Valentine’s Day for Mom.

#2 – Hit the Spa

Nothing says girls day like a trip to the spa. The pampering, the relaxation – it’s pure bliss. Who better to celebrate that than with your favorite girls on Galentine’s Day? Try your local spa for a quick massage, or go all out and book a few treatments at a day spa, where you can really bask in the in the art of doing absolutely nothing, for once. Facials, saunas, pedicures, we are convinced already. And then, top off the day with dinner at that place you’ve been dying to try, and you have a day for the books.

#3 for ME

Four Galentine's Day Activities for Mom

Use this February 13th for you, because self-love is true-love (we even wrote a blog about it, here). Kick everyone out of the house, grab a bottle of vino and your most indulgent snacks, and make a DIY charcuterie board for you, yourself, and you. Maybe flip on Grey’s Anatomy and get lost in McDreamy, or belly laugh to New Girl. We are in full support. Everyone needs a little me time, especially on Galentine’s Day.

#4 Host a boozy game night

Four Galentine's Day Activities for Mom

Call up your girls and have them bring their favorite adult board games. There’s tons to choose from on Amazon if you don’t have your own collection. We recommend: Cards Against Humanity, Telestrations After Dark, and The Voting Game. Get all the gals laughing with hilarious references with Cards Against Humanity. Or see what they really think of you with The Voting Game, where friends can make a vote on things like, “who would throw a birthday party for their pet”. Next, make fancy drinks, bake some carbs, and spend some quality time with the ladies in your life. Like a sleepover, but your friends can all Uber home before bed.

We hope these Four Galentine’s Day Activities for Mom inspires you to celebrate! Because it truly is the best, yet least known, holiday of the year.

Don’t Panic! Hints to Help You Survive a Colicky Baby

Guest Written By: Jess Procter 
Instagram: @north_west_jess
Blog: www.northwestjess.com

Don’t Panic! Hints to Help You Survive a Colicky Baby

Pregnancy can feel like an eternity and by the end of it we feel large, tired and impatient to meet the baby that we know will change our lives – and sleep schedules – forever. It’s so disheartening to bring home a new baby expecting sleepy cuddles and to get hours of inconsolable crying instead; but you’re not alone! So many of us are experiencing or have survived a colicky baby. There isn’t much that makes it easier but there are a few things I learned in my months as a “Colic Mama”. I hope some of them can help you survive, too. 

Adjust Your Expectations

This is number one for most mamas of severely fussy babies. The hardest thing can be to separate your reality from what you thought your Fourth Trimester was going to look like – or what it looks like for your friends or the social media moms you follow. No one expects life with a newborn to be easy but not many mamas expect colic, either. Comparison is truly the thief of joy for parents of a fussy kid, so let go of what you thought would happen and deal, to the best of your ability, with what is happening. Every phase passes.

Lean On Your Village

If you’re not the type to easily accept help this can be a lot easier said than done, but if someone close to you offers help of any kind, take it! Give explicit instructions and don’t be shy – maybe you need your laundry done or a delivery of groceries picked up. Maybe you’d appreciate someone coming over just to hold your screaming child so you can shower. Maybe you want a friend to leave a pizza and a bottle of wine on your doorstep. Accept what you feel comfortable accepting and politely decline what you don’t. 

Give Yourself the Grace to Try and Figure it Out

Even if you don’t have a particularly fussy baby it can take a few months to find out what a newborn likes and doesn’t like. Even veteran moms with five kids have to figure it out with every new babe. A certain type of white noise, that one movement that helps them fall asleep, a baby carrier, a stroller or car ride. It might take a long time to find the thing that works but when you find it and gain some semblance of peace for even half an hour you feel like you just might be able to get through that newborn stage after all! Then again, if you’ve experienced a truly colicky baby you know that sometimes nothing works, no matter how many well-meaning moms swear it worked for their own fussy babe. In that case, just survive. It gets better. Promise. In the meantime, try the gas drops. Try bouncing on a yoga ball. You just never know. 

Be Selfish

This is a time of survival. Don’t feel obligated to cater to others or do things you don’t want to do because you feel like you “should;” there’ll be plenty of time for that later! For now stay home, turn down invitations that make you feel overwhelmed, and don’t worry about putting your life on hold as long as you need to. Everyone will understand. 

Find Like-Minded Parents

We experienced severe colic with my firstborn that lasted for four months and didn’t dissipate completely until she was about six months old. Many of my close friends and family members were having their own babies at that time and I felt so isolated seeing how easily they seemed to manage their lives. Finally I found a Facebook group for parents of spirited and high-needs children and instantly felt understood. Knowing that others were going through something similar didn’t make the days or nights any easier for us but it definitely helped me understand that my child wasn’t fussy because of anything I was doing, she was just having a (much) harder time adjusting to life outside of the womb. Having someone to text in the middle of the night can be bolstering, too.

It’s Okay to Put the Baby Down

There are times when it will be crucial for you to get a break from a screaming baby but circumstances may not permit one. Maybe your partner works long hours, you don’t have a partner, or no friends are available to help out. If your baby has been crying for a very long time and you need to take a few minutes to collect yourself and give your weary arms a break, don’t feel guilty about needing to put the baby down! If she has been fed and changed and is still crying, put her in her crib or another safe place and make yourself a coffee or a quick lunch. As mothers we often feel guilty if we don’t tend to our fussing child every second of the day but she will learn to settle herself eventually and a few minutes here and there is a great start toward her own independence, especially if it saves your own sanity. 

Make Time for Yourself

Obviously during the Fourth Trimester it’s hard enough to find time to sleep, let alone engaging in all of your pre-baby hobbies. But even if you only get fifteen minutes a day you can always find small ways to indulge in a little self care (sometimes very small ways). Short trips to a corner coffee shop for a latte. A few minutes writing in your journal. A phone call to someone who provides a listening ear or a little perspective. A quick bath. One episode of a favorite TV show or podcast while nursing. Invest in a super soft robe or blanket to make those middle-of-the-night feeds feel like less of an obligation and more of an opportunity for comfort.

Most importantly: It’s not you, it’s the baby! It’s nearly impossible not to internalize blame when you experience your newborn seemingly rejecting every attempt to soothe her cries, but it truly isn’t anything that you did or did not do. Colic is awful and it can feel never-ending but it really is such a short time in the scheme of you and your baby’s relationship. As every parent knows, everything is a phase and this one will pass just as all the others do. Soon you’ll find you’re enjoying parenthood a little more every day, and maybe even one day doing the unthinkable – entertaining the idea of having another one! For now, just take a deep breath and go easy on yourself. Good luck!

Why Is It Important To Enforce Self Care For Moms?

Why is it important to enforce self care for moms?

Self care for moms is often too easily overlooked. As a caregiver, it can be hard to feel justified about carving out space to nurture your own needs and wants. How can you afford to set time aside between juggling the schedules and responsibilities of the rest of your family and possibly a career on top of everything? While it may seem virtually impossible that self care for moms could take precedence, enforcing that time for yourself is healthy. Not only does it allow you to have a break, but it allows you to perform everyday tasks more efficiently. Without time to relax, you are more prone to become frustrated and lose energy. By default, by restoring your energy levels, you are not only doing yourself a favor, but you are helping out your whole family. After spending time alone, you will feel rejuvenated, be able to improve your concentration and unwind. Self care for moms is essential.

How to enforce self care for moms?

Our advice for new moms is not to put off self care, but to enforce it early on. This early integration sets a standard of routine and normalcy that can be expected by you and your family. Ultimately “mommy-time” becomes second nature to all. Of all the benefits associated with prioritizing self care for moms, once the practice becomes a habit, you will start to notice improvements in how you experience those little moments that might otherwise feel stressful or difficult.

Our first piece of advice for new moms is to eliminate or reduce unnecessary tasks. Cutting down the amount of time spent on daily activities can be very beneficial. For example, making a list of what needs to be done during the week and what on that list can be outsourced such as using an app for grocery shopping, or asking for help with cooking, cleaning or laundry can contribute to more valuable personal time. Being practical and reasonable about your time is just as important. Perfectionism does not exist, and rather than feeling obliged to keep the house spotless or prepare an elaborate family meal nightly, give yourself the benefit of using moderation to allow yourself more free time.

Once you have eliminated a few things from your day, it is time to schedule in self care. Don’t just think about self care, write specific times and activities down in your planner. This may seem unnecessary, but if you decide when to enforce time for yourself, it is much more likely to happen. Additionally, if you want to work with a personal trainer or spend time with a friend, schedule it in advance. By looping in another person, you create accountability for self care. You can also partner with another mother and plan your self care time together. Instead of a workout buddy, find a “self care buddy.”

What are the benefits of self care for moms?

Some benefits of self care for moms include stress release, increased clarity of thoughts and improved emotional health. These benefits lead to healthier relationships amongst your family, and by allowing your physical body to relax, you can prevent chronic stress and improve your quality of sleep. In addition, you will find yourself feeling less irritable, meaning you will be able to more thoroughly enjoy time spent with your kids.

By enforcing time for yourself, you start to build a support system. It is important for your kids to interact with a variety of different people. Try leaving the kids with their dad or a grandparent when possible while you enjoy a spa day with your girlfriends or hide away with a good book. This creates variability in your children’s lives. Self care for moms is a win-win; Your kids are happier because their momma is more joyful and present, and you are happier because you are giving yourself the gift of balance.

Next time you begin to feel guilty or uncertain about carving time for your own self care, remember that everyone benefits: you, your partner and your kids. Our best advice for new moms is to be aware that your needs are intertwined with your children’s. You can’t fully care for another unless you care for yourself. Be an example for your family and display self care.

#MommyAppreciationSunday!

“Mothers deserve more love & recognition than just one Mother’s Day.”
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