My son was born last January. If you can remember (#mombrain), it was cold. Like -12 degrees the day he was born kinda cold. That means I am well versed in the art of staying in. You can’t really take a newborn for a stroll when the weather is dropping below zero, and you probably don’t want to take your teeny, tiny newborn for a stroll in public anyway. You also don’t want to sit and stare down the clock all day feeling trapped inside. Those walls will start to feel like they are closing in on you if you don’t do something! Winter also brings its own health and safety concerns–what you or bigger kids might be able to handle, your newborn cannot.
I’ve created a list to help you stay safe and sane this winter!
Let’s start with safety…
- Aquaphor! It helps with diaper rash, but I also slather it on little cheeks and noses when the temps drop. It helps combat dry skin and wind burn!
- Elderberry Syrup. Obviously, check with your doctor but I’ve got the whole family taking this, and we haven’t been sick once this winter! It really is a miracle herb. I give the baby the syrup version, and I take the gummies—both are delicious!
- Dressing baby. You might catch some side-eye from a well-meaning onlooker, but don’t put that baby in a giant winter coat and then strap them into the car seat. Car seat straps need to be tight and adding all those layers interferes with their ability to protect. Yes, I look like a crazy person running my baby in and out of stores with a blanket covering him, but it beats trying to get a winter coat on and off of him in the car.
Now onto the fun! Yes, entertaining a baby in the winter can still be fun!
- Public Libraries. We live a little outside of the downtown area so while the Children’s Museum, IMA and such are super nice—they aren’t feasible for weekly outings. I found that our public library has a really nice room with toys and books just for little ones. I’ve even met a mom or two! Best of all—it’s free!
- The Urban Chalkboard. Speaking of places that are fun. The Urban Chalkboard is a great option if you are northside mama in desperate need of a safe place to let your child roam and a good cup of coffee (and snacks)!
- You’ll need to sign-up for a membership, but your local YMCA offers a lot! Use their free child care facilities to get your sweat on. Check out the classes offered or get a jump start on swimming by getting that baby in the pool! My local YMCA also sponsors festive 5K’s in December and March and children under 5 are free!
- Sensory Activities. Cornmeal. Flour. Water. Yes, there will be a mess but putting these (edible) items in shallow dishes for baby to explore will be so, so worth it. There are lots of fun and messy sensory ideas on Pinterest. Which leads us to…
- Extended Bath Time. Maybe you don’t usually give the baby a bath in the middle of the day. Who cares? Breaking up the routine will break up your day. Besides, after sensory activities, they might need one!
- Clean Out The Kitchen. I’ve found that baby proofing the kitchen and leaving a few cabinets that are safe for baby to explore was key to buying myself some time to make a meal. Babies love to beat on pots and pans. Leave a few wooden spoons for drumsticks and watch them start their own band!
- Oh, look! It’s naptime (or, bedtime). Mama lay that baby down and do something for yourself!