I recently had a good friend bring her own little bundle of joy earth side, which got me thinking about some practical and affordable gifts I could get for her (and family). After doing the birth thang twice now, I have my own opinions on what a new mom REALLY needs post birth.
It wasn’t until after I had my two little nuggets that I realized I had done my friends a huge disservice after they had their kids. Instead of toting a blush pink velvet dress and adorable hair accessories that I physically couldn’t stop myself from purchasing, I should’ve had a basket full of necessities, an easy meal, or something that was actually USEFUL for mom. Here’s a few easy ideas.
1) Create a “gift basket” and include practical items:
- Nursing pads and some high quality feminine pads with wings are a MUST. Hospital provided pads, in my experience, are horrible! You might as well put a gym sock down there, it’d be equally absorbent and comfortable.
Other good items to include, Witch Hazel, Lansinoh Cream, yummy lotion and dry shampoo (A new mom’s best friend!).
-I also like to add something that mom has always enjoyed (pre baby). Her favorite candy, coffee, or magazine. Is she a music junkie? throw in an iTunes gift card. You get the idea. Something that is “her,” the old her, not just the new mom version of her.
- You can never go wrong with necessitites, Diapers, toilet paper, that expensive baby laundry detergent, cleaning supplies, etc. There are days where pulling yourself together to run to the store for toilet paper or dish soap seems like a daunting and impossible task. And they will run out eventually, not to mention all of these PRACTICAL items cost money, so help those new parents save a little and beat em’ to the punch.
2.) Another gift is food. Simple, wonderful, easy to prep food.
A prepackaged and ready to eat meal, like fajitas, lasagna, chicken and rice etc, are such a comfort for new families. No running to the store, prepping and cooking. Just heat and eat. No muss, no fuss.
Package your meal in aluminum pans and other disposables, so they don’t have to worry about dishes or returning your pan. I usually prep twice as much dinner for my family, package up half of it for the new family. I will make some French toast or other easy breakfast dish to include with the dinner. Two easy meals for them, no real extra work for me. I wish I had more meals provided to me by friends post baby, especially for #2. I would’ve taken a meal over another kitschy baby item any day. Just keep in mind the family’s tastes and lifestyle.
3.) Give them time and help them out.
When you arrive to snuggle the new baby, encourage the mom to take a nice long shower, paint her nails, eat sans baby, or any other task she may want or need to get done. Seriously though, try to convince her to shower. It is a true luxury in those early days.
Also, Don’t ask if there is something to do around the house, JUST DO IT! Seriously, most people will not tell you “yes definitely, I would love you to do my dirty dishes.” because us mama bears have a lot of pride. But we don’t have the energy to physically stop you from doing them Same goes for the laundry, sweeping, vacuuming, and entertaining a toddler-sibling. FYI.
I am not against frilly and adorable tiny human clothes and knick knacks, just make sure you combine your adorable gift with one that gives the new mom her own separate advantages. Be useful, show love, and snuggle up on that little baby like crazy. Before you know it, that itty bitty baby will be celebrating their first birthday, and instead of packaging up meals, you may be helping create lots of DIY party decorations. Make sure you stop back here when you do Much Love.