Having a newborn to take care of is quite possibly one of the most exhausting, overwhelming, and all-consuming experiences ever. It’s a beautiful thing, but having a baby can also make you feel isolated. It’s okay, totally normal yet few talk about this side of motherhood. Fortunately it doesn’t take much to help you feel connected again with the outside world, especially in the summertime when the weather is nice.
Take advantage of the days when you and your newborn can go out and grab some free vitamin D from the sun. Getting out of the house will allow you to make eye contact, smile and sometimes even talk to other grown ups about something that isn’t related to baby poop, feeding schedules or sleep routines.
You deserve to enjoy the nice weather and get out, so here are 5 fun things you can do with your newborn this summer.
1. Visit your local library. Okay, so you might be thinking, “How can I take a baby to the library where everyone is supposed to be quiet? What if my baby cries?” Relax. If you look online, many libraries have family story times, which are for children and their caregivers. You won’t be the only one there with a little one; someone else can read your child a book while you sit and take it all in.
2. Picnic in the park. Pack yourself a delicious lunch. If your baby is nursing, bring your chichis. If your baby is bottle feeding— pack some bottles. Bring the diaper bag with the whole baby-works paraphernalia and head on over to a gorgeous park in your area. Sit under the shade of a glorious tree and have a wonderful picnic with your newborn. Why not? You have to eat lunch, right? Why not get out and have it in a lovely place?
3. Backyard play date. If you have a backyard, call a friend, call your mother, invite your neighbor and go sit outside, chat and snack. The bonus of using your backyard to socialize is that all the baby gear you need is just a few steps away without you having to pack it and schlep it anywhere.
4. Workout with others. There are so many classes being offered now that let you work out with your baby! Think things like mommy and me yoga or Stroller Strides. Not only is exercise great for your body and state of mind, but these kinds of classes let you meet other mothers and their babies so you can set up some more backyard play dates.
5. Take a leisurely stroll to get a cafecito. It’s hot, how about some iced coffee? Or if you aren’t a coffee drinker, how about some iced tea? Put on a floral dress or whatever makes you feel joyful, grab the stroller and take your baby out for a walk to get the drink of your choice. It’s not expensive, it gets you out of the house and you get something yummy to sip on for the walk back home.
To all the new parents out there, congrats! Even if no one tells you so, please know that you are doing important and valuable work. You are bonding with your child even when it seems like all you are doing is cleaning up messes and singing off-key lullabies.