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4 more things that helped me survive the newborn stage

Posted on 4 min read

A

few weeks ago I wrote a post about my newborn essentials, listing everything from bed and bath, to, er, beyond. Hey, someone should name a store that!

Today, then, I proudly present four of the slightly-less-obvious things that helped us through those first few weeks: so, not essentials, per se, but just a few things we only realised we needed once Max was here and we were stumbling around in the dark – both literally and figuratively.

Which brings me neatly to the first item on my list:

Miffy nightlight
01.
A nightlight for your bedroom

You might have considered buying a nightlight for the nursery, but most newborns sleep in their parents’ room for the first few months, and here’s the thing: they wake up a LOT. Like, a LOT lot. In the first days after we brought Max home, I think we were up every couple of hours with him at least – and even when he WASN’T awake and needing to be fed or changed, I was awake, checking if he was… well, checking if he was still alive, basically. Oh, don’t act like you’ve never done it.

Anyway! When you’re up constantly during the night, you don’t really want to be putting on a bright, overhead light every time you get up, and we (By which I mean, “Terry, who is a special snowflake…”) even found our regular bedroom lamps a little too bright. Enter MIFFY.

We’d (obviously) bought this Miffy lamp for the nursery, but we brought it upstairs for the first few weeks, and we (By which I again mean, “Terry” – I’d have happily slept with a spotlight in my eyes at that point…) found it gave the perfect amount of light for us to see what we were doing without disturbing the other person/people in the room. It’s a testament to how much better we’re sleeping these days that Miffy has now moved back to her rightful spot in the nursery, but she did help get us through those early weeks, so thanks, Miff!

02.
Glow in the dark pacifiers

This was actually a tip from a friend, and while it obviously only applies if your baby uses a pacifier, it’s served us well so far. We use these ones by Mam, and because they glow in the dark, it’s really easy to find them when Max throws them out of his cot at night, or casts them under the couch. It’s also quite amusing when you wake up in the middle of the night and all you can see is this glow-in-the-dark soother bobbing around!

03.
Thermal coffee mug

I’ve talked about this before, I’m sure, but one of the things you quickly discover is that, when you have a baby, your coffee is always cold – or, at least, it is unless you’re clever and buy yourself a thermal coffee mug before the baby arrives. Now, I wasn’t clever, and I didn’t buy myself a thermal coffee mug, but, luckily for me, my dad (Who is a coffee fiend and professional dad…) came to the rescue here, and at the point when I finally realised that every time I made myself a coffee, that’s when Max would decide he needed me for something, he presented me with a small, and yet varied, collection of mugs from his personal collection which ensured my coffee would always stay hot.

I mean, I still sometimes don’t ever get around to drinking it, but hey – at least it’s still hot while it sits there in the mug, right?

Finally, we also bought…

04.
A projection clock…

… which is a clock that projects the time onto the ceiling, just in case you’re wondering. We actually had one of these years ago, but our iPhones had pretty much rendered alarm clocks obsolete in recent years, and then Max came along and rendered even the iPhone alarm obsolete, basically. I mean, who needs an alarm clock when you have a newborn baby, right? It’s not like you’re going to be sleeping in much, after all…

All the same, I do like to know what time it is when I wake up in the night: I’d usually just check my phone, but because we use a side-along crib, which is attached to my side of the bed, my side table has had to be temporarily moved out of reach – with my phone on it. GAH.

Luckily, Terry noticed early on that my attempts to stash my phone under my pillow instead weren’t really working (I’m amazed that phone is still in one piece after all the times I’ve dropped it…), so one day a new projection clock arrived in the mail, so now I can see what time it is as soon as I open my eyes. It sounds like such a little thing – and it is – but those little things can be a nuisance all the same, so if something can make my life a tiny bit easier, I’m all for it.

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So, I’ve just realised that almost all of these things relate to things that make it easier to be awake during the night: I totally didn’t plan it that way, but then again, you DO spend a lot of time awake in the night when you have a newborn, so if you have any tips on how to make that – or any other aspect of new parenthood – easier, I know there are plenty of people out there who could use them!

4 things that made life with a newborn a little bit easier

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7 Comments
  • Linda Libra Loca
    April 23, 2018

    I had one of these nightlights that wake you with gradually getting lighter in the mornings, and while that was not really needed much for the first year, it was great to have it for these night time feeds and such.

    Anne|Linda, Libra, Loca

  • A
    April 23, 2018

    Yes, I got a nightlight for our room too. I breastfed, and after a while it is easy, but initially I needed to see to know what I was doing.

    And I thought I was the only person who got a projection clock! In my case because I am too short sighted to see any other clock unless it is right by me, and there is no space for a shelf by my side of the bed.

    Glad I am not alone.

  • D Johnson
    April 24, 2018

    I saw this product on TV, and I’m unsure of the name/brand, but toilet seats that light up. The soft light, especially in red, doesn’t wake you up fully as you are staggering around at 3 AM.

  • Anna International
    April 24, 2018

    The projection clock is utter genius! I had the same problem with a side sleep cot and nowhere to stash my phone, and because I was breastfeeding at night it helped to know what time she woke, how long she fed for etc etc. We didn’t need a nightlight though as the chandelier in our bedroom is on a dimmer switch, so we simply ensured it was on really low before bed, and then could switch it on with the cord over our heads in the middle of the night and not be dazzled (though sometimes I admit to ‘accidentally’ turning it up if I needed the husband to get up to help! Ha ha!). One of our best DIY decisions ever!
    x

  • Sarah Rooftops
    April 24, 2018

    Yes to the nightlight! We got a GroLight (I think that’s what it’s called?) first time around, which attaches to your ceiling bubl – you click once for a dim light and twice for a bright light – and it was really handy. This time, we had a dinosaur nightlight which we left on all the time.

    The other things which helped me stay sane in the middle of the night were the very bright streetlight outside our bathroom window and never, ever, ever giving in to the temptation to check social media (every minute of possible sleep is precious – don’t throw it away on scrolling Twitter!). Oh, and comfy pyjamas.

  • Debs
    April 25, 2018

    The glow in the dark pacifiers are genius!
    I don’t have a child yet, but that’s certainly something I’ll remember
    Debs @ https://tiger-mint.com

AD | We’re spending a few days at @highlandheatherlodges in beautiful Perthshire, for what Terry is optimistically referring to as his ‘birthday week’. (I say ‘optimistically’ - we’re only here for three days, and his birthday was yesterday, but don’t stop believing, Terry!)⁣
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There’s a hot tub for us and a playpark for Max, so needless to say, we’re having a fantastic time, and I’m already dreading having to leave. Today’s big question: can I pass as an under-12, so I qualify for a pony ride at the nearby wildlife centre? 🤔 (On second thoughts, don’t answer that one...)⁣
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#thetraveltag #scotland_ig #visitscotland #scotland_insta #scotlandlife #scottishblogger  #stayandwander #travelbloggerlife #travelblogging #tblogger #thattravelblog #travellifestyle #travelpreneur #perthshire #scotlandinsta #reallifeandstyle #wearingtoday #igstyleblogger #fashiongrammerv

AD | We’re spending a...

AD | Time for a quick game of “Where’s Amber?”⁣
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It’s another rainy Monday, so I’m throwing it back to our trip to @universalorlando ‘s amazing Volcano Bay water park last month. I’m a bit of a scaredy when it comes to water flumes, but this park had tons of stuff for pretty much everyone: plenty of rides for me, and an amazing splash pad for Max 👶In fact, I’d still be on The Fearless River right now if I possibly could be. Still, doing the laundry and turning the heating on will be just as good, right? Right?! 🌋 🏊‍♀️ .
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#universalorlando #volcanobay #waterpark #lazyriver #vacay #floridavacay

AD | Time for a...

Good news! We took Max to hospital this morning, and saw two different surgeons, who agreed there was no need to go ahead with the surgery as his lip is healing really well on its own 😅  He’ll definitely have a scar, unfortunately, but that would’ve been the case whether he’d had the surgery or not, and if it turns out to be worse than anticipated, we’ll have the option to have it corrected under local anaesthetic when he’s older. ⁣
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I’m still really upset that this happened in the first place, obviously, but so relieved that we don’t have to put him through a general anaesthetic, and just incredibly grateful that it wasn’t anything worse. I know some parents have to deal with much more serious stuff than this, and my heart goes out to you all: it’s been a rough couple of days, and I’m really grateful to everyone who took the time to comment on yesterday’s post - your stories were so comforting when I was panicking yesterday ❤️ ⁣
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(Old photo, obviously: every time Max sees the selfie camera, he thinks it’s going to be one of those filters where you open your mouth and something happens 😂)⁣
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#pbloggers #mummybloggers #mummybloggersuk #ukmumblog #mumblogsuk #mumblogs #mamablog #ukparentbloggers #parentbloggersuk #ukparentingblog #parentingbloggers #motherhoodblogger #motherhoodblog #ukblogger #ukofficialblogger #happyblogger #mummyblog #bloggerclubuk #instamum

Good news! We took Max...

Totally unrelated photo, but we’ve just spent the morning in Accident & Emergency with Max, who fell on the path outside the house and split his lip open 😥 ⁣
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They tried to stitch it up at A&E, but it was totally impossible with him awake, so they’ve booked him in to have it done under general anaesthetic tomorrow ... Max is absolutely fine: the bleeding stopped quickly, he doesn’t seem to be in pain, and is just his normal, happy little self. I, on the other hand, am a complete wreck: the plastic surgeon he saw today reckons if we don’t have it fixed, his lip will be crooked when it heals, but I’m absolutely *terrified* of the thought of my baby having to have a GA. ⁣
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If you’re a long-time follower, you might know that I have a full-blown phobia of general anaesthetic (I literally had an elective c-section in order to eliminate the possibility of an emergency one, which might have had to be done under GA), so I just can’t get my head to accept that it’s safe and he’ll be fine 😥 ⁣
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Positive stories and advice very welcome: I’m just so terrified, I can’t even imagine how to get through the next 24 hours 😥😥😥

Totally unrelated photo, but we’ve...

#throwbackthursday to last week, when I needed a sunhat and SPF 50 to leave the house, rather than the current raincoat and wellies situation. Can you tell the post-holiday blues are still in full swing over here? 🌧 .
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#stylediaries #styleblogger #over30style

#throwbackthursday to last week, when...

I posted this on Stories over the weekend, but he looked so cute in it I figured it deserved a spot on the grid, too! This is Max all ready for his friend Eleah’s 1st birthday party on Saturday: despite the jetlag and his continuing obsession with doors of all kinds (He had an entire soft play at his disposal, but he mostly just wanted to open and close the gate into it...) he had an absolute ball, and spent the whole drive home shouting, “HAPPY! HAPPY!” Thanks to @thestirlingstyle for a great party 🥳 🎈 🎉 . (Oh, and that’s his hairbrush in his hand - boy likes to look his best 😉)
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#littlepiecesofchildhood #cameramama #chikdhoodeveryday #childofig #celebrate_childhood #babieswithstyle #ootdkids #fashionbaby #trendykids

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4 more things that helped me survive the newborn stage