Babies are lots of things—precious, sweet, funny, adorable, the list goes on. But one thing they are not? Easy. And that applies whether you’re a first-timer or a seasoned pro at the mom game. The good thing is, you’re not alone in navigating the crazy, messy, amazing journey of being a baby mama. Those who have gone before are always ready to offer their best advice. Here are 25 short-and-sweet parenting tips on everything from sleep and must-have baby gear to self-care.
1. Go slow and spend lots of time at home. It will keep mommy and baby healthy.
2. Have a routine and stick to it.
3. When in doubt, put them on the boob or add water (bath, shower, sprinkler, hydrate).
4. Don't scroll Facebook while you nurse in the middle of the night. It’s harder to get back to sleep, and you’ll miss out on savoring the time with your baby. It really goes by so quickly, although it doesn't feel like when you're nursing several hours a day!
5. Never wake a sleeping baby.
6. Oldest and best advice in the book: Rest when they rest. Housework can wait.
7. Babies get bored, too! A change of scenery, like a walk around the neighborhood, can work wonders on a grumpy baby.
8. Find your village and ask for help. And if someone offers to come help if you need a shower or a nap, or to do the dishes, take them up on it!
9. There is no such thing as holding your baby too much. Embrace the little moments, be present, and enjoy that little person.
10. If the baby is fed, clothed, and loved, you’re doing everything right. There will be a million opinions on your parenting, so be kind to yourself as long as you know you’re doing your best.
11. Be patient with yourself and baby. You are both new at this. It takes time to get into the swing of things.
12. Tomorrow is a new day.
13. Take time for yourself. When your needs are met, you are more centered, patient and compassionate.
14. Don’t spend tons of money on baby clothes right away. There is ALWAYS a mom who is desperate to get rid of all the cute little outfits she sadly never got to use because babies grow out of things so fast.
15. Electric nail file. #gamechanger
16. Onesie pajamas with zippers only…unless, of course, fumbling with snaps when you’re bleary-eyed and half-asleep during middle-of-the-night diaper changes sounds like fun.
17. Try out different baby carriers until you find one that works for you, then baby wear as much as you can. It makes things so much easier.
18. Velcro swaddles—safe and snug.
19. Gripe water!
20. If you have anxiety while baby is sleeping, get an Owlet or other sleep monitor. Your rest is worth it.
21. Go with your instincts—the mom gut is always right.
22. It’s said often because it’s so true: The days may seem long, but the years are short.
23. Do what works for your baby, and don't worry about what anyone else says or does. What’s good for one person’s child may not be good for yours.
24. Don’t compare your baby’s milestones to those of other babies.
25. You are all that your baby needs!