How To Survive Winter With A Baby

This winter season has been long.

Cabin fever? Check! Bored outta my mind? Check! Can’t wait for spring to finally arrive? DOUBLE Check! I have compiled a list of my top 10 tips for SURVIVING the winter season. Of course, there will still be days when it is so cold you won’t want to leave the house. Check out these indoor/outdoor activity ideas to keep your mind and body stimulated!

Being a SAHM is awesome! Especially over the winter. I mean, every second is enjoyable right? Cuddly baby, nice warm house, home cooked food, fuzzy socks…

Well, this isn’t always the case. I find that most days I am trying to figure out how to entertain an almost 1 year old. We can’t go play in the snow. It’s too cold to be outside longer than 5 seconds. We don’t have access to a vehicle everyday. And last but not least, we live in a basement suite. 

All these excuses for not being able to have fun and meaningful days full of accomplishments and celebrating baby milestones. I find that the days I focus on the negative aspects of it being winter, the more the ‘baby blues’ come around. Focusing on tasks and making a list of things that I want to get done throughout the day, helps keep my mind busy and distracts me from negative thoughts. I also find that if I bake something new or try a new recipe, it helps me to feel like I have experimented with a new skill or hobby. Check out some of my own healthy recipes and treats that are great for pregnant or breastfeeding mommas. 

While you are reading my tips and tricks, make a list of things that you want to accomplish this season. Hold yourself to these by setting a goal and sticking to it. If there are changes that you need to make in your life or routine to be able to accomplish your new goals, then just do it! Make the needed changes in your life so that you can enjoy yourself and time with your baby. Check out my article for making needed changes in your life.

Take mental photographs of the good moments and the hard moments. Time goes so quickly that before you know it your baby won’t be so tiny anymore. 

How To Survive The Winter With A Babe In Your Arms

1 Have a journal where you can keep a to-do list, and write down accomplishments. You might think this will take too much time, but I find that it is necessary for my emotional stability. And it only takes a few minutes!! I use a bullet journal. I write the date at the top of a page, and a couple things that I want to get done for the day. For example: •PRS. Pray, Read, and Smile!  •Workout •Cleaning •And one out of the house activity (library, moms house, an errand etc) Just don’t overwhelm yourself with tasks if you can’t complete them. We all think we can do more, but a day will fly by and we have hardly done anything. So don’t beat yourself up if you don’t finish!

2 Get out of the house at least once a day! Dust off those cobwebs and go to the library! In southern Alberta, we have access to many great facilities, books, toys, and even free library groups! Last year in October-December, B and I took the bus downtown to a baby sign-language course that was offered through Alberta Health. We also took the bus every Wednesday to a free library singing class for babies. This helped break up the week and get us out and about.

3 Start a new hobby. Learn some new recipes for healthy meals, brownies or cookies, crock-pot freezer meals etc. You could catch up on the latest parenting books to read. I am reading a great one right now called Good Nights – The happy parents guide to the family bed (and a peaceful nights sleep!).  Crocheting is something I started back up again this winter season. I made some pretty cute baby hats for B and his cousin!

4 Get lots of rest! Now this doesn’t mean sleeping in everyday. It is important to get up between 7-8 in the morning so you can establish a good nap routine for your babe. I demand breastfeed B and I also let him nap when he needs to. If we sleep in past 8/8:30, it sets his nap too far back in the day, resulting in a late night sleep. So wake up at a good time in the morning, and take a nap while baby sleeps! It’s the best time for cuddles and snuggles!

5 Keep Active!  Join a 30-day workout challenge to stay accountable and to try new exercises and routines. Being active and staying physically fit should be number 1 on the list! If the weather isn’t too cold, then go on a nice walk; just make sure to bundle up yourself and baby. Doing an at home workout is just as great. Check out some of my favorite at home YouTube video workouts. The endorphins your body secretes and the happy hormones that race through your body during a workout will help fight off the winter blues and keep you looking great all year round!

6 Visit family and friends! I am SO BLESSED to be able to spend one whole day a week at my moms house while my husband is at school. He drops me off in the morning and picks me up in the evening when he is done. This way I am able to have a change of scenery, spend quality time with my mom, dad, and my brother who still lives at home. B loves his grandparents and uncle!

7 If you live in a basement suite like me, try to get in as much light as you can. Vitamin D is a lifetime prescription for us Canadians! The heat of the sun is also a good reminder that we aren’t mole rats! Our bedroom has the biggest window and also faces south. So once the sun is up, our room is warm and bright. I love doing activities in our room with B. We will play toys, sing songs, jump on the bed, fold laundry, and even play guitar! B loves swaying while I play and sing to him. 

8 Turn on the motivating music! We have a stereo in our bedroom that I love playing the radio on. There are days when the quiet is nice, and I can hear my own thoughts. Whereas other days, I need to have some music to get me through the long hours. – Have a dance party with your baby! B always laughs when I try to ‘get my groove on’. 

9 Organize your junk. Whether it be your storage room, closet, bathroom, dresser, kitchen cupboards, or all of the above, take one day a week to get your house tidy and organized. I LOVE organizing things. Having order in my house is something that helps me stay sane when life gets crazy. I spent a couple days reorganizing our storage in our pantry. Its a room that wraps under the stairs that separate the upstairs suite from our basement suite. To be completely honest with you, it is 90% BABY STUFF! So hopefully we have lots more babies. Especially boys.

10 Spend time pampering yourself. I never wear pajamas during the day. Okay well maybe I did when I first had B. Then I decided that I had more confidence and motivation to get things done if I actually got dressed in real people clothing. So when you wake up, get some clothes on! Do your hair, makeup, take a shower with your baby, anything that will help you feel set for the day. Paint your nails once in a while. Try some no-heat curlers the night before so you can have a cute hair-do.

Ideas For You!

-Create your own laminated recipe cards and box
-Organize your kitchen cupboards to utilize all spaces
-Sort clothes into sizes once baby outgrows them - makes it easier when next baby arrives!
-Start a new craft - crochet, knit, sewing, scrap-booking, painting
-Learn a new musical instrument
-Read popular parenting books
-Attend mom and baby classes - GREAT for bonding time!
-Plan a vacation!
-Ask friends and family to help you or visit you

Any ideas you’d like me to add or write about? Leave a comment with tips and tricks that have worked for you. I LOVE hearing everyone’s ideas!

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