We all know how much a new baby will change our lives – with it will come an abundance of love and joy, yet also countless new responsibilities as well as a total change of our daily routines. So how can you keep it all straight and prevent from feeling overwhelmed? A little organization will help you keep the stress and overwhelm at bay and make your day run much smoother. Here are a few tips to make the transition easier – whether you are expecting or are already enjoying your little bundle of joy.
One important step is to avoid getting caught up in clutter, so start by purging your home and deciding what should stay and what could go for this new phase in your life. Ask yourself these questions: do I need it, love it or use it? If the answer is no then let it go. Remember to store things away with baby’s safety in mind, time will fly by and before you know it you will have an inquisitive little crawler or toddler on your hands that will be into just about everything. So store items that could potentially be harmful to your baby in closed containers on high shelves.
Purging will also create additional space which you will need to utilize for all the new baby items that will enter your home. Create homes for all new items by grouping like items together and storing them where you would use those most frequently.
You could generate additional space in your kitchen cupboards for baby bottles, dishes and baby food by moving seldom used items to a different location. Avoid storing bottles and food on kitchen counters – they will add visual clutter that may ultimately create more anxiety.
Create fully stocked diaper changing stations conveniently located near your main living area, as well as in your baby’s bedroom for night-time diaper changes.
Having all important information pertaining to your baby in one binder is extremely helpful. Create a section for all the medical records from doctor visits and dosing amounts should your baby be on medicine. You may also leave extra space for notes and concerns that you could then take with you on your next doctor visit. Keep track of feeding and nap schedules, etc to refer back to if needed, especially if you have different people help with the childcare.
Most likely you will receive your share of baby presents, as well as some hand me downs from friends and family. Sort all babies clothing by size, then store all larger sizes in labeled bins until your baby is ready to wear them. Be sure to purge all outgrown clothing on a regular basis, making a decision on whether to keep the items for future siblings (stored in labeled totes) or to donate. Avoid making the mistake of shoving all outgrown clothing into a tote and storing them “to deal with later”. These totes will likely sit for years adding clutter to your home.
Toys are another clutter culprit. Try to establish a small area (tote, basket or shelf) to house a few toys while keeping the larger quantity of toys out of the main living area in the bedroom or playroom, then switch them out for a few “new” toys every once in a while. This is a good habit to begin early and carry on throughout childhood. This method will keep the toy clutter at bay, while encouraging your child to play more with each toy, feeling less overwhelmed when given fewer choices. An additional benefit is that you will have fewer items to pick up when straightening up.
Another habit to get into is doing the “10 minute tidy” at the end of each day before going to bed. I know that you will be tired and feel that you have no energy left, but try to spend just 5 to 10 minutes in the evening to return items to their homes and your morning will start of much smoother.
Create a memory box (each member of the family really should have one) to safely store mementos like baby’s first pair of shoes, etc.
Of course as with any routine and lifestyle change we always learn by trial and error. What may be a useful tip for one person may not work for the next, so see what works best for you and tweak things as needed. You will soon see that having organized spaces and routines in place will create an environment where you can relax, enjoy your baby’s childhood more, as well as lessen your own anxiety and stress levels, which is always a wonderful thing.
If you found these tips to be helpful or have comments please feel free to add them in the comment section below.
- Thrifty, Green Ideas for Raising Baby (familyfocusblog.com)