Query for outdoorsie mamas - May baby - what to expect/lifestyle question.(10 Posts)
Hi, i'm not sure i'm posting this in the correct thread so please advise me if not! We're expecting our first baby in May and i'm just trying to envisage what our summer will be like! Obviously we're aware that our lives are about to change immensely - totally on board for that :-) My partner and I usually really enjoy the outdoors in the summer and would like to enjoy this lifestyle with our new family as soon as possible. We live in a good area for beaches and countryside walks. So my question is how soon can we expect to go on walks and outings to the beach with a wee babe? Is it conceiveable to stay out all day? What would it be like to go on a walk for a couple of hours with a small baby (how often would I need to stop for feeds and nappy changes?)
Responses welcome from all but particularly from mums who have experience of introducing their little ones to nature at a young age and to live an active family lifestyle :-)
Hi I have a may baby who is now 4. She was my second do baby and the first was only 15 months older but we had no trouble getting out and about. When your baby is small you can do anything you like. It's impossible to guess how often you will need to feed, but if you bf it won't matter because you will always have your books with you. Mostly it will be about every 3 hours or so. But you will get used to feeding everywhere and anywhere.
My advice would be to get a good sling like a baby born or similar that has back support. You can carry you baby in that for months and then switch to a backpack later on. Also go for an all terrain buggy (I swear by Mountain Buggy but there's loads available). Look for big wheels that you can lock into place and good suspension.
Get one that has a carrycot attachment and then you will be safe in the knowledge that your baby is lying flat. Also invest in a UV cover if you want to do lots of sunny time. And sun cream. Lots of sun cream! I like Tesco baby factor 50. It rubs in easy.
We've always got out and about no problem and we had 3 in 3 years. We go camping every year as well and it's not as bad as it sounds with a baby!
There are much better slings than baby Bjorn. They don't hold babies correctly. A stretchy wrap to start with and maybe something with buckles later (ergo, connecta).
It will all depend on what kind of birth you have etc. When they are very small they are very portable. I've found the older bit more challenging, when ds wanted to walk, but couldn't walk far.
But tiny babies are very easy to take along.
Thank you! I'm encouraged by your responses so far :-)
Runlikeareindeer - I have just purchased a stretchy sling after much indecision about what sling to opt for, so i'm relieved to hear that's your recommendation too :-)
atomicyogurt - Funny you mention camping because this post originated from a camping holiday last week where DP and myself were fantasizing about how great it would be to take baby on a camping trip and hoping that we weren't being complete dissolutioned first time parents-to-be by thinking this might be doable!
We are fairly outdoorsy and have 2 DCs. The youngest is 16 mo.
We used a sling, although I'm not a huge fan, so in the early days it limited us a bit. We now use a backpack carrier and ds loves it and loves our little hikes!
We don't camp, so can't comment on that, but we do like hiking and we found that we have curbed the length of some of our walks and days out tbh. We still go on them, but we might do paths or country parks and limit it to 6 mile max. We like a walk where there is a cafe or pub in the vicinity so we could change ds or feed him, or I could go to the loo, get a sandwich etc. we also look for places with adventure playgrounds. Or at least some swings so the kids can get some fun too.
Our 9 yo ds has always been used to us doing this and is now quite a seasoned walker. Over the years we've bought nature spotting books, binoculars, and other stuff to keep him occupied.
With a tiny baby you just need to see how it goes I guess. Find what you're comfortable with. Start local, make sure you have all the gear you need and be prepared to cut it short sometimes.
I don't want to sound pessimistic, but I reckon if you start with fairly low expectations, that's a good thing!
We're pretty outdoorsy, DH and I both do outdoor jobs as well, our two DCs are almost 3 and ten months. I probably don't spend quite as much time outdoors as I used to (I never used to be indoors, never even had a tv!) but IME most young kids love being outdoors, in summer I just chuck all the toys out into the garden and we do everything out there.
First six months with both they lived in a sling and I was always pottering outside with them, I found bf easy as you could do it anywhere no need to carry anything except some nappies and wipes, and a spare outfit in case of explosion!
DS1 now loves being outdoors and it's quite hard keeping him in at all, he loves playing on his scooter, balance bike and trike and is a pretty good walker, loves 'finding nature', they will make their own entertainment outdoors, throwing stones into water, splashing in puddles and mud, making sand castles etc. spent the whole afternoon outside today playing with a ball, saying hello to cows, baby crawling about in the grass looking at twigs and leaves.
I find getting outside every single day is really important for our sanity, even if it's chucking it down we will still put waterproofs on and go and potter / feed the hens, get logs in etc even if it's only 20 mins, children are not bothered by rain at all!
Having the right gear is important, warm waterproof clothes. I used a kari me sling and macpac backpack, would thoroughly recommend both.
Camping is fine, we've taken ours lots, DS2 when he was only 12 weeks he slept in the Moses basket next to me.
The thing I found hard to come to terms with was not being able to do really active stuff that I was used to doing, shorter walks as they get bored too long in the backpack and really slow walking when you have to go at their pace, like another poster said lower your standards!!
Ooh, forgot to say, I'm not sure you can use sun cream on teeny tiny babies so that might be difficult if it's another hot summer, I may be wrong though, both mine were spring babies and we live in the highlands so not much need for suncream the midges here are a pain in the backside and probably drive me indoors more than anything else now
Camping is fine but make sure you have warm clothes for nights. You'll need them if you are feeling and your baby will need them too! A nice sleeping bag, and some if that foil stuff people use at the end of marathons on the floor under the beds is good.
We also use airbeds with edges you can get them a lot of places they are sort of like furry paddling pools with inflatable bases. That sounds weird but it's good for baby and good for toddler too. We bought a black-out festival tent for the kids too which we pitch inside our tent instead of a sleeping area.
I don't want to put a damper on the enthusiasm above, but...
Thesimple fact is noone can tell you what it will be like and whether you'll manage to get out hiking and camping. Babies are so different. Your baby may not sleep well, you may struggle with bf.
DC1 woke every 45 mins for 5m. He would only nap in the buggy (so i did get out ). He bf pretty much continuously for first 6wks and every 1-2 hrs after that. He cried whenever i wasn't holding him for months. He was just a bit of a tricky baby, and it took me a while to realise there wasn't much i could do about it!
I didn't get out much for 6weeks or so and was a zombie for a while after.
Just go with the flow. Have no expectations. You will get out to beach/hiking again, but not necessarily in the summer. Your toddler to be will love your lifestyle though!
i think the key is to be very relaxed and not have too many expectations. DS1 was at a local rugby match at 6 days old in January - but I was out of breath just walking from the car park to the ground and had to sit down and DS had to be held by DH and DM as I didn't have the strength.
DTs were may babies and we were out in the garden with them within a few days (in the shade obs) and started going for short walks in that first week. however I wasn't strong enough to push the double pram.
and both of mine were natural births, my body was just knackered! but you build it up day by day. don't expect baby to slot into your pre-baby lifestyle but you will get back to doing the stuff you love in time.
I have 3 very outdoorsy kids now but in the early days it was very much easy does it. a good sling is a must, I had a babyhawk which I loved.
also, you may be able to go hiking while baby/toddler is happy in a backpack but as they get older they will want to walk...at snails pace....and look at every small leaf and piece of grass....toddlers aren't really into hiking so adjust your expectation!!
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