So your friends have just become proud new parents and you couldn’t be more excited for them. You want to give them a gift that will go down in the history books as #thebestgiftever. Baby Hints and Tips contributor Amanda Nicholls has the top 5 gifts that will keep on giving for parents with a new baby.
Pre prepared meals
When we got home from hospital after having our second baby, we found a rather large package sitting on our front porch. “What on earth could that be?” I asked my husband as we went to inspect. Only the Best.Gift.Ever! His colleagues had sent a week’s worth of pre prepared meals. Packed on ice, we had everything from gourmet dinners to delicious desserts. Another friend came by to meet our bub and she started unpacking two bags of groceries into our freezer. I couldn’t honestly say what the gift was she gave our baby, but I sure do remember that garlic bread and pasta she loaded into my fridge. New parents are time poor. Their hands are full, their minds in overdrive and they’re exhausted to say the least. There will be nights that they will get to 9pm and realise they haven’t organised dinner for themselves. That’s why pre prepared meals that can be shoved in the oven are the most thoughtful gift you can give to parents with a newborn.
Up there with things that no longer rate highly on a new mum’s agenda is cleaning the house. Or doing any type of household chore. Washing, folding, ironing… all of that stuff will begin to pile up before your poor friend has even had the chance to think about it. Depending on how close a friend you are, you might want to come over with a few household products and tell her to sit back with bub while you whip around and give her house a once over. Tell her it’s your gift and she can return the favour for you one day. Or run a load of laundry through her machine. This can be especially helpful if your friend had a difficult delivery or Caesarian as she will still be recovering. If you know your friend won’t want you sorting through her delicates, grab a voucher for a cleaning service to come to her that she can book in herself. Either way, she will remember this gift right up til the little tike’s 21st birthday.
Your friend might not take you up on it right away, but offer her your baby sitting services. Make up a few vouchers and tell her to cash them in when she needs a night out with hubby. Leaving the house without your baby is a strange feeling but it sure is exciting. She might pummel you with the biggest instruction manual you have ever seen before she walks out the door, but I can guarantee once she’s on the other side of that door, she and hubby will be sprinting to the car like a pair of Olympic athletes. If it’s not her first baby and she has other kids, it can also be helpful beyond words to take her older kids off her hands. Take them for a walk to the park for an hour while she has a shower and washes her hair or does sweet jack all! Doesn’t matter what she does, she will feel like a new woman having some alone time with the newest addition to her family.
Something for her
Flowers are lovely, the baby clothes are cute, the thoughtful cards are sweet, but what about something that she can use to pamper herself? A massage voucher or if you know her favourite hair dresser or beautician, an appointment where you meet her there, watch the baby during her appointment, pay for her mani pedi then take her for a coffee will be so delightfully indulgent, she will want to squeeze you. Or get in early and make up a pamper pack for her hospital bag. My Aunty gave me some gorgeous shower gel and moisturiser and a beautiful face washer pre baby. I still remember my first shower post birth, using those items and thinking I don’t remember any other shower in the history of showers being so darned good.
It might seem extreme or not important to you, but if you can’t remember the last time you had a booster shot for whooping cough or measles, make an appointment with your GP and get it done for your friend. Brand new babies can’t be immunised until at least six weeks and their immune system is very fragile. Being protected from serious illnesses protects your friend’s baby and that is a gift that they will be eternally grateful for. Similarly, if you’re not feeling well, tell your friend you can’t wait to meet their baby but not until you’re in good health. Sterilising your hands too before having a nurse is important because you never know if there is something you’ve been in contact with that the baby may be allergic to.
The best gifts for a new baby are often not what you’d expect. Need more info? Check out this good stuff: