I just completed my first month with two kids. I have a preschooler who is 3 and a little newbie who is 4 weeks old and the time has flow by but I wanted to share how I survived this new phase with two kids.
1)if possible have someone stay with you for recovery. My mum is with me and I needed someone to let me sit on the couch and make sure I ate and manage my cleaning to my house didn’t fall apart. If it’s not possible for friends or family consider a post partum doula who can just about do anything you need in recovery. It is pricey however and can cost about $1500 or more.
2) grocery click and collect so far it’s been a life saver I have only used Walmart it cost about $2.75 and you need to do a $50 order which is not hard to do I can do this order every two weeks. I love that you can get it next day and not leave the car. Fresh produce was well picked my lasagna was a bit cracked but overall the best decision. I didn’t like not being able to use coupons or price match but I read superstore will let you do this and it’s only $25 minimum and also $3. Walmart is much closer but I would try superstore in the future. I tried in person shopping with my mom and thank God figured out this is virtually impossible and a nightmare so this option will be used definitely in the future. Through in a pack of diapers to help make up your $50.
3) crock pot cooking-as the time winds down with my mum leaving me soon I have found a way! I bought the crockpot bible from value village and it’s awesome I chose three recipes to try per week and I buy groceries to match. I prep my ingredients early in the morning after breakfast while my son plays and babe is in the carrier. It takes 20 mins to prep and by 6pm you will have a meal maybe prep for 10 mins before the rice or pasta. This has been a God send.
4) if you can have your preschooler in school even if it’s two or three days a week. We are in Montessori so it helped however we are now on summer vacation so August is when we need to be creative I have a semi schedule and babe will be old enough for library and drop in programs as well as trips to the farm with season pass that will be small enough and short enough to get energy out and manage baby.
5)carriers are your best friend use it I have a baby Bjorn for first 4 months and a ring sling while at home for quick in and out. I’m addicted so I also have a mei dai and and a woven wrap that I haven’t even used yet but she’s only 10lbs now let’s see as she gets heavier. I have an ergo for when she’s 4months and that is my workhorse of a carrier.
6)bouncy chairs, swings, car seats use these for breaks not extended periods especially sleep but take a break and my daughter already loves playing with a whoozit while in bouncy chair for short periods.
7)people offer to help take them up on it to take a shower go for a walk, take a deep breath.
8)stars and strollers-Mental health break I think used it twice once when son was in school and once with my husband for a pseudo date with my new born it’s once a week Thursday at 2pm relaxing and you get away mentally for two hours wish I did this more with my first.
9) double stroller- my son is three but really glad I got this especially at newborn stage he gets tired and wants in the stroller there may be long days downtown or at zoo or even the farm. I have the option for regular seat and car seat attachment on at the moment and when she’s a little older will have both seats on. My best advice is when you have your first get a convertible to double like a Britax b ready my choice for price and quality, city select or uppa baby vista, bugaboo. Invest early to save money as these things go up in price over time and don’t go down.
10) one on one time with preschooler/ toddler easier said than done but I would do a 10 minute walk just the two of us and try to catch the moments alone. Also will start pumping a little to get some break time from baby and using my formula. Mum needs a break!
Those are my tips for now will update more as things are always changing but this first year we are in for a ride and surviving and saving often are trading off but hopefully will be uniting to get me through this year.