8 tips to help new mums thrive in winter

Photo: Shutterstock
Photo: Shutterstock 

If you've had a baby over Autumn or Winter, chances are you're making the most of the cool weather to snuggle up with your little one and get to know each other.

As a new mum, it's perfectly natural to spend most of your time tending to your baby. The feeding, changing, bathing, sleeping (hopefully) and all that washing can quickly fill your days.

But it's still super important to remember to look after yourself as well. After all, if the mother ship goes down, the rest of the family will go down with it!

That's why we wanted to give you some simple, practical tips to help you not only survive these hectic newborn days but to thrive.

Make a big pot of soup

Do you ever get to around 3pm and realise that you haven't eaten anything yet? This is not only bad for your energy levels, it can also lead to bad habits like a late afternoon biscuit binge.

To make life easier, prepare a big batch of soup on the weekend that you can just reheat each day for lunch. A hearty minestrone or a roasted pumpkin soup are both easy and delicious.

Ask for help

Kind friends and relatives will all be asking if there's anything they can do to help now that you're a mum. Don't be too proud to tell them what you need when they visit.

You can ask your sister to pop a load of washing on the line. A friend can drop a meal over to keep in your freezer. A neighbour can pick you up a loaf of bread when they go to the shops. People love to help, and now is the time in your life when you should definitely say yes!

Make the freezer your friend

The newborn days are a time to lean on your freezer to help out. So anytime you make something such as bolognese, a curry, or muffins, make double. Freeze the unused portions to defrost as needed on busy days.

Advertisement

You can also freeze single serve portions of rice and just defrost them in the microwave to save time. Get into the habit of popping batches of snacks (such as bliss balls) into the freezer that you can grab to eat with one hand while you feed the baby.

Get outside and get some fresh air

When it's wet and cold it can feel too overwhelming to go out for a walk each day. But if you see a break in the weather, make the most of it to get out of the house with the pram or baby carrier for a walk. Even if it's just to pop to the post office or the shops, you'll feel much better after you get some fresh air.

Use your slow cooker

Often newborns are restless and cranky in the afternoon when you might normally prepare dinner (they don't call 5 pm the witching hour for nothing). This is where your slow cooker can come in handy. When bub is having their morning nap pull out the slow cooker and throw something in there to bubble away throughout the day.

A warming casserole or a leg of lamb becomes even more delicious after hours of slow cooking. Prep the side dishes such as rice or mash and just reheat at dinnertime. Baby won't sleep? Try putting them in the baby carrier while you chop and cook.

Grab a rest when you can

The washing will never be done and the house will never be spotless, so don't waste every precious hour that your baby is asleep on chores. As a new mum, your body is struggling to cope with the demands of feeding your baby and broken nights of sleep, so give yourself a break when you can. Even 20 minutes with your feet up while you read a magazine can help boost your energy levels.

Join a mother's group

A great time to join a mother's group is when your baby is around six to eight weeks old. Finding a group of women who are all in the trenches with babies around the same age can be a lifesaver. Ask all the questions you want, share advice and stories, and find the best pram-friendly cafes around town together.

You might find some of your soon-to-be closest friends in this group, so it's well worth making the effort to go and join if you can. You can also join the Healthy Mummy online support group.

Make a nightly ritual

With a newborn it can feel as though all of your brainpower is focused on getting them to sleep. But it's important that you are getting some rest too. Make a bedtime routine for yourself to help you get into the right frame of mind for sleep.

Make a cup of herbal tea, switch off the screens, listen to some music or read a book, pop some warm pyjamas on, and slip into some bed socks (these will not only help you sleep, they'll also keep your feet warm for the night feeds too).

These newborn days feel long, but the years go by so quickly. Some days will be tough, but know that you are doing a great job. And next time someone asks if you need a hand with anything, remember to say YES!

This story originally appeared on POPSUGAR Australia, read it here.