When you’re expecting a baby, you receive tons of advice – most of it unsolicited. I remember standing in the grocery store as three different women lectured me about diapers, feeding schedules, and toys. I did my best to not roll my eyes since this was MY baby and I was going to be the best mom ever and I didn’t need no stinking advice. And then after Maddie came home, I became a googling machine, looking for any and all advice I could get my hands on, because who thought it was OK to let me have a baby omg I don’t know anyyyyyyyyyything!
All the parenting tips I read started with a paragraph about how different my life was going to be once I had a baby. DUH! But then, while reading the comments on one particularly scary post, I came across what I now consider my Golden New Baby Rule:
Instead of adapting your life to the new baby, adapt the new baby into your life.
That was a sage commenter, my friends. It sounds easy…and it IS easy. For example: I am a night owl. If I go to bed at midnight, that’s an early night for me. But, going to bed at 2 am means sometimes I need to sleep past 7 am. So, I put Annie to bed later. Instead of her going down for the night between 7-8pm like most kids her age, I put her down at 9pm. She then sleeps until 8 or 9 am the next morning. She’s still getting the proper amount of sleep, but it works to MY schedule. Because seriously, I am super-cranky when I don’t get enough sleep.
Here are a few other ways I’ve worked my kid into my life:
- Annie loves nothing more than hours of Elmo and Yo Gabba Gabba, so I return the favor and make her watch my VHS set of Beverly Hills 90210. I’ve come to appreciate Gabba and Elmo, and Annie has learned to fist pump when she hears the “The Donna Martin Graduates” chant.
- I need music in my house at all times. Instead of listening to silly kid songs, I play my own music mixes. Annie LOVES IT. Not only has she started singing along to the Beatles and Britney, I don’t have “Head, Shoulders, Knees and Toes” playing on a constant loop IN MY BRAIN. Bonus: Your kid dances whenever she hears a funky fresh beat – even in the grocery store.
- You CAN eat out again! Within reason of course – don’t be those jerks who bring their crying baby to a nice restaurant. But every town has their local Mexican/Dive/American restaurant that serves reliably yummy food and is low on the fancy factor. We have a few Mexican restaurants on heavy rotation. Annie loves the mariachis, cheese quesadillas, and yummy margaritas. Wait. Scratch the margaritas. Those are for me. But the mariachis and quesadillas definitely equal a good time for Annie – AND my tummy.
What’s some of the fun advice you’ve received about parenting?