Baby's First Holiday Season
Perhaps your child is blessed with loving grandparents—who may also be a little overzealous around the holiday season. Some new parents politely request that grandparents skip gift-giving this first year and instead help with practical items such as diapers, baby food, bottles, or blankets. Others suggest educational toys, or even donations for future college funds rather than traditional toys.
After the holidays have passed, let your baby experience each new toy alone first before introducing a new one. You may wish to leave one or two toys out and box up the rest. Over the next months, periodically switch out one of her older toys and introduce a new one.
Family and love are the foundations of the winter holiday season—this is especially true when a new baby is at the center of attention. Sometimes the extra doting can be over-stimulating for little ones. It may also trigger stress for you and your partner as relatives extol advice on everything from how often to feed your baby to bedtime and bathtime rituals. Don’t be afraid to politely tell well-meaning relatives that although you appreciate their help, you and your partner have established routines that work for your baby.
Try to retain the basics of your child’s feeding, bathing, and sleep schedule. Check for the telltale signs of fatigue and over-stimulation (ear-pulling, excessive crying, restlessness, and so on), and if you notice your baby becoming agitated, remove yourselves from the festivities and temporarily escape to a quiet place. You can even make a “Do not disturb” or “Shh … baby sleeping” sign and hang it on your baby’s door to remind your guests that there is a baby napping nearby. If you are planning to visit family or friends, ask ahead if you can use a spare room for such a purpose.
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