With my due date just around the corner, we are busy preparing our home and family for baby O’s arrival. Kara had a fairly easy transition when we brought Elijah into the world 2 years ago (she was so excited and wanted to help so much with her new baby brother). Elijah on the other hand, I’m a little more worried about. He can have a tendency to be protective and slightly possessive over me and his dad. He shares us much better with his sister now that he’s two, but he has never been keen on letting us hold other people’s babies or playing one on one with his cousins. With total opposites in my children, I thought I would share some tips on How to Help Your Child Transition to a New Baby in case that’s something you’re prepping for as well! Some of these tips were mentioned by my Facebook blogging groups/friends (you guys are so thoughtful and appreciated), so I’ve included those down below too!
- Set up baby items ahead of time.
I’ve already started pulling out old baby things like the bouncer, crib, etc. and vocalizing to our kids that baby sister is coming soon! Kara being six and a second timer at this, is already fully prepared, and anxious for baby O’s arrival. Eli has started to express interest in the fact that there’s a baby in Mommy’s tummy and he’s not allowed to climb in her crib or all over mom, although he thinks he still fits in his old bouncer and car seat. What I’ve read is that if you’re able to do these things ahead of time, it’s not as huge of a shock when the baby finally arrives! (fingers crossed this has been helping Eli!)
- Big Brother / Big Sister Gifts
I wanted my kids to have something special when they came to visit the hospital, kind of like a gift from their new baby sister. With Baby O’s arrival, of course we have been purchasing quite a few items for her, from clothes, blankets, bows, etc. it can be kind of disappointing as an older sibling to not get anything for yourself. We’re keeping it small, there’s really no reason to go over board here. Here’s what baby sister is getting for her siblings, Elijah & Kara
- Throwing a big brother / big sister “party”
When I say “party” I don’t mean a party with decorations and lots of effort, and I know if my husband is reading this, he’s already shaking his head thinking how “extra” Im wanting to be for the kids this time around haha. This will be a SUPER simple dinner, maybe some delivery pizza from our favorite pizza place or Doordash and some cupcakes or cookies. (yay for my last cheat meal before I get my life back on track! Stay tuned for my journey through Keto). We’ll make this a celebration of Kara and Eli’s new roles. This way the focus is on them and they feel extra special.
- Giving them big brother/sister roles
This was a great recommendation from some friends on Facebook. Get them to help out with little tasks, of course it depends how old they are. Many momma’s have mentioned creating a “big brother” basket or something similar with things the baby might need, like a few diapers, wipes, binky, etc. and allowing the older sibling to get those things for the baby when you need them.
- Patience and making time
I’ll be making sure to make time for my first two kiddos, like keeping special dates with them, attending Kara’s soccer games and practices, even though this will be hard toting around three kids when dad is working nights. In addition to sister’s new gift to them, give them leniency on ipad time, and let them watch tv or play next to you while you nurse. Get a family member to take the baby on a walk or watch the baby so you can have an hour of one on one, uninterrupted time with your other children, whether that’s going to the park or staying in and playing with one another.
Bringing a new baby into the family is a huge change! We have to be gentle with older siblings, even though Karagirl did super well with her brother two years ago, she still had moments of acting out, when she felt like she wasn’t getting as much love and attention. Ultimately my recommendation to you Mommas is don’t forget that while your worrying that your first kid(s) won’t get as much attention (which they will) don’t forget that they are gaining a beautiful sibling and a whole new relationship. It won’t be long before they love the baby as much as you!
If you have other tips or started following some of these tips, please comment and share below!