Getting an older child involved with your new baby helps them feel included and helps prevent them feeling ‘pushed out’. It’s a hard time for everyone to adjust to an expanding family but here are a few ways you can all bond with the new baby.
There will be a lot of nappies so this one can be used often. My son loves to help pull a nappy out of the stacker or bag for Mia, he brings me the wipes and then he pulls out the wipes (sometimes he gets carried away with this, but that’s ok) we count how many wipes we use. Then job done, the baby has a fresh nappy and the older child has felt like they’ve helped and been apart of this time instead of you doing it by yourself fully focused on the baby.
Toys and Books
Your child may be into different toy than a baby will be into but there are still the basic toys that everyone can enjoy. Building blocks, the baby will love knocking down what your child has built. My son finds this really funny when we build a tower and she throws her arms into it. Bubbles, if you’ve read my other posts you’ll know I just love bubbles for children, this they can both enjoy either to look at or to chase and pop. Picture books is a great visual for the baby and if your older child can speak, then you can encourage them to show and tell what the pictures are of. If you have a toddler that isn’t able to say much then they will enjoy looking at the pictures as much as the baby. Reading stories is great for you to bond with both of your children, your baby feel happy listening to your voice and your child will be happy to sit with you and be involved with the story.
Both of my children LOVE music! I either hold Mia in my arms bouncing up and down to the music and Mason is showing me his moves or holding my hand too and dancing. We could dance for hours we all enjoy it! Sometimes I will put Mia in her Bumbo Seat or bouncer and Mason will dance around her.
Show and Tell
This is one of my of my lazy ways to entertain them both and keep Mason involved with entertaining Mia. I just ask Mason to show Mia different toys or objects in the room, he loves showing her things and saying ‘there, there’ or if he can say what it is then he will tell her.
When you feed your baby their milk this is very close bonding for you and your baby. Letting your child hold the bottle stops them from thinking all of your attention at that time is only for the baby. This way again, they feel like they are helping and being involved.
Where possible, always bath them together. I make sure every evening they bath at the same time together from when Mia was only 2 weeks old. I still make sure I bath them together even on the odd evening I do it alone. Mason will give Mia different bath toys to play with and will hide in my shoulder when she splashes him with her legs. Not only does it stop it from being individual time with each of them but it saves so much time!