What an exciting milestone the 1st birthday is for your little one. Whether you choose to have a quiet family celebration or a great big bash, the first birthday is a time to mark your baby’s transition from infant to toddler. The birthday party should be enjoyable for baby and adults alike.
The best advice that I have come across as far as 1st birthday planning is to make sure and plan around naptime. For my daughter’s first birthday, we planned a lunch without taking into account the fact that she eats early and naps from eleven to one or two. She was very unhappy towards the end and I had to put her down to sleep before she got a chance to open her gifts. In my case, afternoon or early evening would have worked better for her schedule. It’s a good idea to keep the party under two hours, regardless, as babies tend to get overwhelmed if it goes much longer than that.
You can find a barrage of first birthday party themes and ideas in party stores and online. We went with a Baby Einstein theme and dressed my little girl in the cutest birthday dress and princess birthday hat from SophiasStyle baby girl clothing store. Finger foods usually work well if you are serving food, especially for little ones!
The highlight of 1st birthdays is often the cake. If you mention that the cake is for a first birthday party when you order it from the baker, oftentimes they will throw in a tiny cake just for the birthday girl or boy to tear into. Make sure that you have your camera ready for this, moms & dads. These are the pictures that will be fun to pull out in the teen years.
First birthday gifts can range from cute baby clothes to toys. Riding toys are a very popular gift, as are imagination toys. It is a good idea to keep in mind the main thing that you have learned from your baby’s first year of life – babies are unpredictable. Keep things casual and low-maintenance for your child’s first birthday so that you and baby can enjoy and celebrate their special day.
When a mother has a new baby, she pictures herself falling in love immediately with the tiny bundle of joy. The hours of strenuous labor melt away as she holds and coos at the infant and imagines the endless joy that will result from being a new parent. But in reality, attachment to a newborn doesn’t always happen immediately. Pregnancy is stressful, and labor is definitely no walk in the park. The outcome is an exhausted and stressed out mother that has a newborn baby that needs almost constant care. Attachment to your baby may not come as naturally as you like…and that’s okay. But, there are some tips that may help you along.
Breastfeeding is a wonderful way to form healthy baby attachment. If breastfeeding is not for you, then make sure that you hold your baby close and give them plenty of eye contact while feeding them. Eye contact is your newborn’s first experience with communication. Speaking of communication, talk and read to your baby. Play games such as patty-cake and peek-a-boo. Communication is the beginning of understanding and trust for infants and is very important for their development…and your motherly development as well.
Another trick is to use a sling or baby front carrier when doing things around the house. Touching and closeness are both extremely important in your babies’ healthy growth and development.
Remember that being a new mother is exhausting. You will not be able to finish the same amount of housework and errands that you were able to complete before you gave birth for some time. Give yourself a break and try some time savers. Shop online for baby girl clothes. Take the help that your mother-in-law offers. Quiet the inner neat freak that can aggravate exhaustion and make bonding more difficult.
Keep in mind that forming an attachment to your baby is both a complex and personal experience…and it may take time. If you are careful to make sure that your infants basic needs are met, then he or she won’t suffer if the bond takes a little extra time to form. If you find that you are still struggling by the time you take your infant to their first well-baby check-up, discuss it with the doctor. You may be suffering from postpartum depression, which is absolutely treatable and more common than you may realize.
Having a newborn baby can be a wonderful and joyous occasion, but everyone’s experience is different. You just have to find what works best for you and your baby. One of the best things that you can do for your own sanity is talk to other new mothers about their feelings and experiences. It’s encouraging to know that there is a world full of other imperfect mothers out there just like us…just doing their best!