Your very first Christmas with baby is extremely precious. Even though they may not remember it, babies absolutely love the shiny lights, Christmas tree and the jolly festive songs. It’s a time you can also create long-lasting traditions and gaze in wonder at this little bundle of joy you’ve created.
However, despite how magical it can be, Christmas with a new baby can also be extremely stressful. If you get stressed, baby is going to get stressed and that’s enough to completely ruin the big day! So, if you want to make sure your first Christmas together is a magical, relaxing one, below you’ll discover 10 essential tips to prepare for baby’s first Christmas.
1. Try To Avoid Travelling
Travelling with a baby at Christmas can be extremely stressful. It’s not just the trip which can be a nightmare; it can also really wreak havoc on your baby’s schedule. So, rather than agreeing to go to friends or family’s houses, it would be much more sensible and less stressful to invite people over to yours.
Now, that doesn’t mean you need to do all of the cooking. Why not make it a potluck Christmas where guests bring a specific part of the meal? So, you could be in charge of the meat, somebody else could be in charge of the vegetables and so on. That way, you won’t be stressing out trying to cook a huge dinner while also attending to baby’s needs.
2. Stick To Your Baby’s Routine
It may be Christmas, but that doesn’t mean you should deviate from your little one’s routine. Doing so can lead to major meltdowns and trouble for weeks to come! So, try to keep to baby’s existing schedule for feeds, naps and bedtime. Remember, if you’re having lots of visitors, your little one is likely to need more naps than usual as it can become exhausting dealing with lots of people!
If you can stick to baby’s routine, you’ll find their first Christmas a lot more relaxing!
3. Don’t Try To Be Supermom
Following on from tip #1 – don’t try to be supermom! Now that baby’s here, it’s going to be much more difficult to get things done on the big day. So, as well as getting help cooking the dinner, you’ll want to minimize your chores for the day.
If need be, clean up and sort everything out in the week leading up to Christmas. Then, all that’s left to do on Christmas Day is relax and enjoy the day.
4. Stock Up On Cards And Stamps
If you’ve still got the dreaded “baby brain” it’s likely you’ll forget somebody’s Christmas card. So, keep a stock of cards and stamps by the door. That way, if you get one from somebody you’ve forgotten, you can quickly write one out, get a stamp on it and post it next time you leave the house.
5. Be Realistic About Baby’s Christmas Outfit
Baby’s first Christmas wouldn’t be complete without a cute little outfit. However, you need to keep in mind that it’s unlikely baby will be happy to stay in the outfit all day. They could become too hot, or the feel of the costume may irritate their sensitive skin.
Rather than an actual outfit, why not consider investing in a Christmas themed playsuit? Baby won’t get too hot and they’ll still be dressed for the occasion.
6. Remember Santa May Be Pretty Scary For Baby
Santa may be a lovable, friendly guy to you, but for baby he can be pretty terrifying. So, if you’re thinking of taking baby to visit Santa this Christmas, be prepared for potential meltdowns!
All babies are different, and some may be mesmerized by Santa, while others may be really frightened. If you know your baby is uncomfortable around strangers, it may be best to skip seeing Santa this year and wait until they’re a little older.
7. Prepare For Potential Illness
For whatever reason, illness always seems to strike at the worst possible times. Babies are prone to picking up colds and mild illnesses, especially in winter. So, don’t be surprised if you wake up on Christmas morning and your little one isn’t feeling their best!
It may not be the way you imagined spending Christmas, but just remember baby can still enjoy some things even if they’re poorly. Stock up on baby-friendly medicine and prepare for plenty of rest and TLC just in case.
8. Avoid Spending Too Much
Of course, you’re going to want to spoil baby for their first Christmas, but the truth is, they’re too young to appreciate most things at this stage. Many parents are dismayed to find their baby prefers the box a present came in, rather than the present itself! While a few new toys will definitely be appreciated, your little one is most likely to enjoy the twinkling lights, tree and Christmas music.
So, don’t spend too much on your baby this Christmas. Buy a few things, maybe something practical like a new outfit, and wait until they’re a little older to splurge on gifts.
9. Make Sure Decorations Are Baby Proof
Before you brought baby home, you likely spent hours making sure it was baby proof. However, it’s easy to forget to do the same when you’re putting up the Christmas decorations.
One of the first things you should do is make sure the tree is firmly anchored to the wall. That way, there’s no chance it could fall and topple onto baby. If you have glass or breakable Christmas ornaments, these should also be kept well out of baby’s reach.
10. Keep Expectations Realistic
Finally, it’s a good idea to make sure your expectations are realistic. It’s common for new parents to envisage a perfect, joyful day where nothing at all goes wrong. This may well happen, but the chances are pretty slim!
You can’t predict anything with babies. As mentioned earlier, they could be poorly on the big day, and things won’t necessarily go to plan. You also may not be able to do everything you think you can do. So, adjust your expectations, or better still, don’t have any! That way, you won’t feel disappointed or stressed if things don’t go to plan.
These are 10 of the best tips to prepare for baby’s first Christmas. Above all else, don’t forget to enjoy the day. The baby stage passes so quickly so be sure to take plenty of photos and maybe even look into creating your own festive traditions.