April 7, 2019 at 12:03 pm #3556
Bringing home a new little one in just a few weeks! Any tips for continuing to homeschool my 2 year old?April 8, 2019 at 8:12 pm #3716
Sending warm blessings for a safe, peaceful delivery! One of my mentors once offered me some lovely advice for the newborn days, rooted in the idea of inhale/exhale. If you can think of your days as a series of micro-rhythms, like breathing, it will help you to prioritize the things that matter to you while still getting the rest and care you’ll need.
So, your inhales will be things you do to care for yourself, e.g. feeding/rocking the newborn in a dark and quiet room while your 2-year-old watches Daniel Tiger, sneaking in a bath when your spouse arrives home, taking a mid-day coffee run break when everyone’s fussy. Immediately after each inhale, when you’ve had a few moments of restoration, you’ll be far more productive in your exhale, i.e. doing things to care for others like reading aloud to your 2-year-old, loading the dishwasher, switching the laundry, etc.
Also: in the coming weeks, if possible, take the time now to teach your 2-year-old specific ways to be helpful/independent, i.e. show him/her where you’ll keep the diapers, or how he can put on his/her own shoes, or how to make his/her own snack. This 1000% counts as homeschooling! You’re walking your child through habits and expectations to lay the groundwork toward a smoother transition.
There are so many moments of our days where we’re teaching and don’t realize, so if you can train your brain to count it all, you’ll be surprised at how much you’re accomplishing!
Lastly: Narrate, narrate, narrate. While the chicken is thawing, explain why. When you’re stopped at a red light, count cars. When you’re out for a walk, identify animal habitats, or listen for bird calls, or collect leaves.
It allllll counts. Every last bit of it – the inhales and exhales, the surprises along the way. We’re cheering you on, Allison! :)
e.April 13, 2019 at 8:15 am #3907
Hi Allison! Wishing you all the best during this exciting time. My best advice is to outsource as much as you can and accept help when it’s offered. When our second was born I still tried to do everything myself and ended up really burned out. When our third came along, I was much better at receiving help and was able to be specific. If someone asked, “how can I help?” I wouldn’t be afraid to say grocery pick up, or laundry, and watching my other two so I could have some time to regroup. And mostly, be gentle with yourself. It takes the time it takes (and it’s different for everyone) to settle into a new rhythm when there’s a new addition to the family. Sending love!April 13, 2019 at 9:47 am #3911
Such an exciting time! I am 2 weeks postpartum and I’ll add just two things: It always seems like the transition is hardest for the toddler. And I do my very best to not always blame the baby for what can not happen right now. For example, when the toddler wants help pouring a drink, “I say, I can get that for. you in 5 minutes.” As opposed to: “I am nursing the baby right now, you’ll have to wait.” Because I think sometimes toddlers begin to begrudge the baby. But asking for their help to get a diaper or wipe out for you, teaching them to diaper their baby doll, singing the toddler’s favorite songs to help calm a fussy baby. Including the toddler as much as possible has helped mine along.
Also, one funny thing: the toddler (who has been weaned for more than a year) asked to nurse when we were cuddling. I expressed a sip of my milk in a cup for her, and she said, “YUMMY! More, please!” and I thought, oh no! What have I done!?? I gave her a little more. Then my other two kids wanted to try. So we had a little breastmilk tasting party. Inside I was nervous that everyone would want this all the time now. But it satisfied the curiosity and no one has asked for mom’s milk again.April 13, 2019 at 1:12 pm #3913
I would like to echo everything the Other Goose Keymaster mentioned. They will continue to learn right alongside you. and of course these Other Goose activities weekly that only require a few dedicated minutes here and there. I found it definitely helped to have things prepped. Whether it’s an activity that doesn’t require too much clean up that I prepped the night before, or some food in the fridge that is easy to eat finger food, it will help in times when the toddler wants some attention but the baby needs it too.April 26, 2019 at 10:55 am #4298
We love all of your supportive responses! Such great suggestions!!!!! Such a treat to be alongside a wider village. :)April 27, 2019 at 8:20 am #4317Daisy DronenParticipant
So sweet! Congrats! Be very gentle with yourself and give yourself time to rest! Remember at least forty days of caring for your body as it heals and to meet that sweet new baby. That was my boundary for myself with my last baby and it made a world of difference!May 3, 2019 at 12:34 pm #4494
Such sweet encouragement, Daisy!March 15, 2020 at 4:44 pm #20605
These are all such great tips. I have a 3.5 year old, and expecting our second one this summer. It’s the perfect time for us to start doing some homeschooling projects, and I’m excited! Also, I love Daniel Tiger…we’ve been having our son watch the episode when he gets a baby sister and he already calls himself a “big helper.”May 9, 2020 at 4:07 pm #46040
I came on here looking for this exact advice! Just brought baby number 3 home, and with the pandemic, we are at home as a new family of 5 – without outside family help. My 3 year old is having the hardest time, and the 5 year old is totally fine… thank you for the sage advice!!
What tips do you have for toddler tantrums that you’re pretty sure are due to being out of sorts with new baby?September 4, 2020 at 7:18 pm #54977
Totally feel you! I have a 3 month old and a two year old and the pandemic made it much harder. With travel restrictions and having to be extra careful, I wasn’t able to get help as much as I could’ve sans pandemic. One thing I’ve realized about my 2yr old is that he’s been much grouchier with not being able to see friends and for a while we weren’t getting outside much at all because I was consumed with taking care of myself and the new baby. Since I’ve just gotten my bearings a bit I’ve been trying to get us outside for a walk each morning (so much work, but so worth it!) a good walk or even a sit outside while the two year old runs around helps all of our mental health tremendously.
Also, if I’m desperate, I try to FaceTime one of his toddler friends/my friends with a toddler. He’s an extravert, so he needs people!! (And so do I!)
Also, it’s hard on these pandemic streets! Give yourself lots of grace!
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