New Mom Guide to Cabin Fever
Baby, it’s really (really) cold outside.
Got a touch of cabin fever? You’re not alone. The winter months are beyond a doubt the hardest month for moms on mat leave. While it can be easy to snuggle up under piles of blankets and play peek-a-boo for hours on end, there’s only so much popping out from behind a pillow you can do before the element of surprise sort of loses its shine.
Of course, there’s the baby circuit to keep things fresh; saucer, jumper, swing, play mat – repeat! But the question remains after you’ve exceeded your baby’s 30-minute attention span, what are you going to do with the remaining hours of your day?
The truth is that while cooped up indoors, you’re bound to go stir-crazy and so is your wee one. So, where can you go that doesn’t leave you shivering in your boots? Here are a few suggestions for baby-friendly activities to ensure that your mood doesn’t fall alongside the temperature:
Join a Mommy Group
Indulge in the company of other new moms. Scout out mommy groups in your area and commit to attending 2-3 activities per week! Mommy groups are a great way to build connections with fellow moms in your neighbourhood. Once you’ve made a handful of friendships that go beyond baby class, try orchestrating a rotating playdate between houses and enjoy a cup of coffee among women who know all about the trials and tribulations that motherhood brings.
Find a Drop-In
Make a list of no-cost or low-cost baby-friendly drop-ins at libraries, community centres or recreation centres near you! Singalongs and story-time hour are a hit with babies of all ages and can be a great way to break up the day. Add activities of interest to your calendar so you have somewhere to turn when you’re feeling trapped or struggling to comfort a fussy baby. Sometimes you just need a change of environment to lighten things up – and if you’re really lucky, your little one will fall asleep on the car ride home. Fingers crossed!
Find your Favourite Indoor Exercise
The winter months don’t necessarily mean that hibernation will ensue (although admittedly, it happens to the best of us). The truth is, it can be really hard for new moms to find time to hit the gym in the winter months. Instead, try squeezing a work-out into your daytime routine! Baby yoga? Stroll and Fit? Take your pick. As long as you’re out of the house and getting your sweat on, it will be happy baby pose all around.
Channel Your Inner Mall-Walker
We’re so not kidding. Walking the mall is a great way to burn off some serious calories while enjoying a small dose of retail therapy. Do a few laps, pause to window shop and then proceed to the food court to feed yourself – and baby. Do a quick search for malls near you that offer an indoor play place where babies can blow off some steam. Even better? Find a mall where child care comes free – it does actually exist!
Remember, motherhood requires an open mind! Bundle up, throw together a diaper bag and do what must be done to ensure that you and baby keep active during the coldest months of the year.