Nesting During Pregnancy | Lullaby Earth Blog – LullabyEarth.com

A Guide To Nesting During Pregnancy

Nesting During Pregnancy

Have you noticed the first blooms of spring popping up in your garden, or perhaps the singing of birds building nests in the trees? Spring is here and it’s time for a renewal of the world around us! If you’re pregnant, you know that nesting isn’t just for the birds anymore. This blog will give you a guide to nesting this spring as you get ready for your new bundle of joy to arrive. Plus, it features real stories from moms who have been through it all.

You’ll know the nesting bug has struck when you have an urge to get your home “baby-ready.” It is more common in the later weeks of pregnancy, closer to delivery. Similarly, we get an urge to clean and organize the house once nicer weather is upon us, so if you’re due in the spring or summer months your nesting urges are more intense as you have twice the urge to get your home in shape.

Advice for Nesting Safely

Safety first! You might have a strong urge to get everything super clean from the baseboards to the ceiling, but enlist the help of your partner or a friend to do any heavy lifting or climbing to clean high areas. You should also open a window to improve ventilation, and avoid using harsh chemical cleaners. Chemical cleaners can release fumes that are harmful for you to breathe, especially during pregnancy. Look for a list of safer non-toxic cleaning supplies in our earlier blog post about spring cleaning your nursery. If you have any concerns about how much to lift or what cleaning supplies to use, check with your doctor.

If you’re building or setting up nursery furniture, try to do it as early as possible to allow for any off-gassing. Some items might be light enough for you to put together on your own but if anything is big, heavy, or awkward to move and arrange by yourself, ask for help. Of course, a lightweight crib mattress will be convenient and easy to move around to set up your nursery, even if you rearrange it all twelve times.

Nesting in The Nursery

The urge to clean and organize is different for each woman, and even each pregnancy. Or you might not get the nesting urge at all. It’s common during nesting to spend a lot of time on the nursery, including washing and folding the baby’s clothes and blankets. You can also open the windows to air out the room, and wash the curtains to make sure nothing is dusty. If you are painting the nursery, get zero-VOC paint and/or have someone else paint for you so you aren’t exposed to the paint fumes.

Lauren says: “I started nesting around 34 weeks. I folded and organized baby clothes about 4 billion times. I also scrubbed the baseboards with a toothbrush. I made my partner rearrange the nursery 3 times and went back to the original way we had it set up.”


Nursery recap:

  • Laundry (baby clothes, bedding, cloth diapers, curtains)
  • Dust furniture
  • Clean ceiling fan
  • Scrub baseboards 
  • Sweep and mop (and/or vacuum) floor and rugs 
  • Make sure you have all the baby necessities on your list

Nesting in the Kitchen

Another common area pregnant women focus on is the kitchen. Some pregnant mamas use the nesting urge to finally banish all of the non-matching containers and lids that accumulate in cabinets and drawers. It’s a great time to clean out the coffee pot, blender, and electric kettle with a vinegar solution. If the mood strikes you, clean out the fridge, toss anything expired (resist the urge to open it and see how far gone it is - you’re pregnant, come on!), and scrub the shelves. You can also scrub the sink and put some cleaning pods down the garbage disposal. While you’re at it, rearrange the items in your pantry. Be honest about what you’re actually going to eat, and donate the rest of your non-perishables to a shelter. Wash all your kitchen towels, washcloths, and curtains. Replace sponges, clean out the microwave, and clean the oven. You can rearrange and organize cabinets and countertops too, if the mood strikes you.

Another aspect of nesting is preparing for life after baby, so you can also take some time and direct your energy toward making freezer meals to eat when you’re home with your new little one!

Katie says: “With my first I didn't own a mop and would scrub the entire kitchen on my hands and knees with a sponge.”

Kitchen recap:

  • Laundry (towels, washcloths, curtains)
  • Clean surfaces (stovetop, countertops)
  • Clean appliances (microwave, toaster oven, oven, refrigerator, dishwasher)
  • Clean the sink and garbage disposal 
  • Throw out expired food
  • Clean pantry and donate food you’re not planning to eat 
  • Prepare freezer meals for after delivery 
  • Buy a mop (trust us & Katie)

Nesting in the Living Areas

Your living room, den, or family room probably needs some attention. Spruce up the space with a quick tidy and clean the floors, baseboards, and any dust or cobwebs in the corners. You can clean lampshades with a lint roller and launder your curtains and any furniture slipcovers or throw blankets. You might even get the urge to rearrange furniture, which is pretty normal. Remember to ask for help if you’re trying to move something heavy!

Lexie says: “Our old couches needed to GO and my husband said he would take care of it. Well, he kept putting it off. So one day I got fed up and just started pushing the loveseat out the door. My husband said “Just wait. I told you I would take care of it,” to which I responded, "Yes, and you haven't." I was halfway to the elevator before he helped me drag it in and out to the dumpster. Then he called a buddy of ours to help him with the couch since clearly I was 100% done waiting.”

Living room recap:

  1. Laundry (curtains, throw blankets, slipcovers)
  2. Sweep and mop (or vacuum) floors and rugs 
  3. Wipe baseboards and crown molding 
  4. Organize bookshelves, DVDs, tv stand, etc.
  5. Clear surfaces of clutter 
  6. Dust surfaces and appliances 
  7. Get a friend to help with heavy lifting or moving furniture

Nesting in the Bathrooms

Bathrooms can get pretty germy and might have funky smells, so feel free to delegate this one! Take down the shower curtains and wash them with your towels, and scrub the toilet, tub, and sink. Bonus points for cleaning out the linen closet and mopping the floor. Keep in mind that you can use vinegar and baking soda to clean without chemical fumes. If you can stand the smell of the vinegar, it’s an excellent cleaner! You can also use hydrogen peroxide as a disinfectant and cleaner without much of an odor.

Bathroom recap:

  • Laundry (towels, washcloths, curtains, shower curtain)
  • Clean tub and sink
  • Clean toilet 
  • Sweep and mop the floor (or steam clean)
  • Wipe baseboards 
  • Clean out and organize linen closet and medicine cabinet 
  • Throw out expired bath and beauty products 

Nesting in the Bedroom

Clean your room! Seriously. Especially if you’ll keep your baby in a crib or co-sleeper in your room, it’s important to feel secure and happy in your space. Gather up all the dirty laundry lurking in closets and hampers, clean the floors, and change your sheets. You’ll feel refreshed and calmer with these small changes and you can undertake bigger projects like organizing bookshelves, etc. if you feel up to it.

Bedroom recap:

  • Laundry (clothes, sheets, curtains)
  • Sweep and mop (or vacuum) floors and rugs 
  • Wipe baseboards
  • Organize bookshelves
  • Organize closet
  • Organize jewelry

Nesting in the Office

If you have a home office, use some of your nesting energy to organize and prepare things you’ll need easy access to like hospital records, information from your midwife, your birth plan, etc. You can also organize bookshelves and office supplies and clean your desk. Not all nesting has to happen in the physical environment, either; you can organize files on your computer and phone too!

Office recap:

  • Laundry (curtains)
  • Sweep and mop (or vacuum) floors and rugs
  • Wipe baseboards
  • Organize bookshelves, file cabinets, and storage containers 
  • Declutter office supplies 
  • Organize computer files 
  • Make space on your phone for hundreds of baby photos

General Pregnancy Nesting Tips

The nesting urge may strike you or it may not, it depends on the person and the pregnancy! Most mamas-to-be find that having their hospital bag packed by 35 weeks or so is a good idea, and you may find yourself re-packing it a few times, even if you’re not nesting much. Nesting might present itself differently in the much later weeks of pregnancy when you could go into labor at any time.

Meg says:”Currently, I'm hitting the psychological nesting of "OH NO, IT COULD HAPPEN ANY SECOND!" My brain is making me panic non-stop to the point I keep my hair braided for the hospital, dishes washed, all errands ran... just in case. It is mentally exhausting.” (Editor’s note: Just a few days after providing this comment, Meg has had her baby. Congrats, Meg!)

Caroline says: “I didn't pack a bag properly until I had called a taxi to take me to hospital. I thought I'd be able to do it when my contractions started… wrong.”

Nesting Tips for Partners

Partners, we know this nesting stuff might seem a little weird, but it’s a natural part of pregnancy. Your partner might ask you for help, so do your best to be available to help with some tasks like moving furniture or cleaning things that are high up. Feel free to offer your ideas on how to organize, or offer to go pick up some nontoxic cleaning supplies. Do what you can to make nesting an easier process. And remember, pregnant women shouldn’t be cleaning litter boxes due to the risk of toxoplasmosis, so get used to the scooper.

Caroline says: “Advice for the partners: No matter how crazy you think it is, no matter your clean you think the place is, don't tell your pregnant partner this. If they ask you to help, then help!”

Your Nesting Stories

Has the nesting bug hit you? Did you get double trouble with a spring cleaning urge on top of nesting? Tell us your funniest nesting stories!

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Kid to Kid Kindness

Kid to Kid Friendliness

It’s always important to instill the importance of being kind when speaking with your children, but focus more heavily on this message during Random Acts of Kindness Week. Take this week to share with your kids some ideas of random acts of kindness that they can do for the little ones around them.


1. Wave At Kids On The School Bus

Happiness is contagious, so stress to your kids that they should try every day to share their joy with the children around them. You never know who is having a bad day and could use cheering up. Something as simple as waving to others on the school bus or smiling when they walk passed others in the hallway can easily brighten another child’s day.


2. Write A Happy Note To A Classmate

Whether its a classmate who’s having a bad day or just a random child in class, drawing or writing a happy note to someone can have a very positive impact. Explain to your children how simple acts like this remind others that people are thinking about them and care.


3. Help Siblings With Their Chores

Random acts of kindness don’t always have to be directed at friends or classmates. Explain to your children that, if they have siblings, these nice deeds can be done for them as well. Your child could offer to help their siblings with their chores or make their beds for them one morning. The more kindness your children show to each other, the more they will show it to others.


4. Share A Toy With a Friend

It’s no surprise that kids love their toys.That’s why it’s such a big deal for them to share their beloved toys with others. Suggest that next time they have playtime at school or a playdate with a friend that they offer up one of their favorite toys for another child to play with. It’s not only nice to do, it’s also a lesson in selflessness.


5. Invite A Classmate To Play With Them

As parents, you have all seen or heard about kids getting left out at lunch or the playground. Unfortunately, not all children get treated fairly, and part of your goal during Random Acts of Kindness Week should be to remind your children to include everyone. They should always do it, but tell them to pay special attention this week to children who might need a friend at lunch or on the playground.

What random act of kindness are you sharing with your child this week? Let us know in the comments!

Tags: parenting

Valentine’s Day Cards for Parents

Valentine's Day Card for Parent's

This Valentine’s Day, take some time out of your busy day being a parent to express your love for your partner….by asking for help with the kids! Download and print one of these fun Valentines to give to the one who will understand just how romantic a little help can be. 

 

Parent Valentine'sAs a parent, you know finding time to nap is quite the miracle.
Download To Print Valentine (PDF) 

 

 

For those parents who just want an evening break this Valentine’s Day.

 

 

Parent's Valentine

The best Valentine is someone who can keep you sane during the daily chaos.
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Parent Valentine's

Be as committed to your partner as your kids are to disrupting your sleep.
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Parent Valentine

Fun fact: You can still express your love while sleeping.
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Parent Valentine

When you love your Valentine but still wouldn’t mind a little help with the kids.
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Non-Toxic Valentine's Day Treats

Non-Toxic Valentine's Day Treats

Valentine’s Day is approaching, so you will need to start considering what treats to bring to school parties or have prepared at home.

Just because it’s a treat doesn’t mean it has to be bad for kids. We’ve rounded up some of the best non-toxic Valentine’s Day treat options to make for your kiddos this year.

 

1.) Fudgy No-Bake Brownie Bites

Dairy-free, egg-free and gluten-free, these Fudgy No-Bake Brownies are a great way for your children to get a non-toxic chocolate fix on Valentine’s Day. These are quick to make for those parents who are on-the-go, and they use all-natural ingredients. To make them extra festive, use a cookie cutter to form them into the shape of hearts.


2.) Frozen Strawberries & Yogurt

This cute non-toxic Valentine’s Day treat only takes two ingredients! Frozen strawberries covered in yogurt look festive when cut in half and are still healthy and extremely easy to make.


3.) Strawberry Banana Oatmeal Muffins

Heart-shaped muffin pans are your best friend for Valentine’s Day parties. Use them to shape these strawberry banana oatmeal muffins, a treat your children will surely love (and that happens to be good for them). These muffins are naturally sweetened with the strawberries and bananas, so they aren’t loaded with excessive amounts of sugar.


4.) Vegan Strawberry Love Bugs

Talk about an adorable treat for Valentine’s Day! Not to mention, these Vegan Strawberry Love Bugs are shockingly simple to make. Choose a vegan dark chocolate and white chocolate to make these ladybugs non-toxic and vegan-friendly.


5.) Honey Bee No Bake Cookies

Helping your children write out Valentine’s, getting party decorations, running your usual errands AND making treats from scratch can be quite a lot to balance in your average day. A no bake recipe, like these honey bee no bake cookies, are a great option for busy parents. Plus, this recipe proves that you can make something that looks intricate and theme-appropriate that is still non-toxic and easy to prepare. These cookies do use peanut butter, so keep that in mind for nut allergies.


What non-toxic treats are you making for your little ones this Valentine’s Day? Share with us in the comments!

Love-Themed Books For Kids

Love-Themed Books For Kids Love is in the air. While your children may feel and see it, they may not understand it.

With Valentine’s Day just around the corner, use this opportunity to pick some books that will illustrate the concept of love to your children and what it can mean in various situations.

To help with your search, we picked a few of our favorite children’s books about love.


The Big Book of Love

“The Big Book of Love” by Trace Moroney is a great book for those parents who want to show their children all of the different forms of love. The book shows how children can love family, friends and themselves. It also shows children that they don’t only need to show love through gifts and affection, but also through things like acts of service.


Guess How Much I Love You

One of the most popular children’s books about love, “Guess How Much I Love You” by Sam McBratney is a simple yet beloved story of a father and son pair of Nutbrown Hares comparing their love for each other through different quantities. Parents all over the world have used this book to demonstrate how deeply you can love your family members.


Everyone Says I Love You

If you are looking to expand your children’s cultural understanding, “Everyone Says I Love You” by Beegee Tolpa is a fun book that teaches kids how to say “I love you” in languages from around the world. Along with that, it features pop-ups of famous landmarks, making it interactive.


I Love You Because You’re You

“I Love You Because You’re You” by Liza Baker explains love in a visually unexpected way through a mother fox’s greeting cards to her little one. Specifically, she tells her child that she loves them no matter what, the truest form of unconditional love.


Henry in Love

Innocent and unsure, children show love in the purest of ways, which is why “Henry in Love” by Peter McCarty is such a heartwarming love story for children. Henry the cat expresses his love for his classmate, Chloe the bunny, in the best way any little boy can: by sharing his snack. This tale shows how even shy little ones can show their love in big and powerful ways...with muffins.


What books about love do you like to read to your children? Share in the comments!

Tags: parenting

Winter Wellness for Parents

Winter Wellness for Parents While you are worrying about your children’s health this winter, don’t neglect your own wellness! You also need to take extra steps to stay healthy because, just like your kids, you are bringing home germs this season.

Parents, try some of these winter wellness tips to keep yourself happy and healthy during the cold winter.


1.) Find The Light

Caring for children and keeping them healthy is already stressful enough, so add a cold, dark winter on top of that, and you may find your mood getting worse this season. Don’t let all of this get you down because the happier you are, the happier your children will be. Keep your blinds open, exercise, go outside when it’s sunny and increase the amount of light in your house to keep your emotional health in check. The more light around you, the happier you will be.


2.) Load Up On Water

The temperature has dropped, so you are relying on coffee, hot chocolate and tea to stay warm. However, don’t skimp on water this season. You may not want a cold beverage, but it’s better to drink water than become dehydrated. Try drinking hot water with lemon or keep a bottle at room temperature to skip the chill. It’s important to drink just as much water as you do in the warmer months, if not more, because the hydration is also helpful in avoiding dry skin.


3.) Wash Your Hands

This seems like a no-brainer, but it’s important to remember hand washing if you want to keep up with winter wellness. Between taking your kids to school, the doctor and going to the grocery store, you are constantly encountering germs, ESPECIALLY when you have kids. Be extremely vigilant with hand washing, whenever you are in public, when you get home, any time that it seems necessary.


4.) Have Outdoor And Indoor Clothes

Walking into your home with children may be pure chaos, but be sure to take just a minute to change out of your outside clothes when you come in. Not only do your outside clothes have germs on them from wherever you went, but it’s also never good to stay in cold, wet clothes. Just a second a day to change into a warm outfit can make all the difference.


5.) Keep It Colorful in the Kitchen

You should always stock your kitchen with fresh fruits and vegetables, but it’s very important to do so in the winter when you really just want to eat comfort foods. Produce will provide you and your children with antioxidants that will protect your bodies during the cold months. Don’t think that your diet has to be boring if it’s healthy, there are plenty of delicious recipes that use fresh produce!

Parents, how are you staying healthy this winter? Share with us in the comments!

 

Tags: parenting

Winter Wellness for Kids

Winter Wellness for Kids

Once the seasons change from fall to winter, you probably have some new concerns for your children’s health. At the same time, you likely also drop some of the health worries you had in the previous seasons. But what should you REALLY be doing to keep your kids happy and healthy in the cold winter months? We break down some of the top winter wellness tips for your kids.

 

1.) Fight Dry Skin

Many toddlers love playing in the snow. Sledding and making snow angels are completely new experiences for the kids, but when they come inside, it may not be as fun anymore. The cold, dry air may lead your children to have dry, itchy skin. Right when they come inside use a non-toxic lotion like California Baby’s Everyday Lotion on exposed skin like cheeks and ears to avoid discomfort for your children. Pay special attention to kiddos who have eczema because wintertime can exacerbate the red, itchy skin.

 

2.) Warm Winter Clothing

You may be lax about how you personally bundle up during the winter, but don’t have that habit when you are dressing your kids. According to the Cleveland Clinic, your children should wear one more layer than you as an adult do in the cold. Also, boots, gloves and hats are extremely important because they keep your children warm and comfortable.

 

According to the Mayo Clinic, if your children are still in a car seat, don’t forget that it is dangerous to have thick coats under the car seat harness. It can make the harness straps loose, which will not protect a child in a wreck. So take off your child’s coat when they get in the car and put it back on before having them out in the cold.

 

3.) Allergies

Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean you can forget about allergies! While there are many seasonal allergies that only pop up during the warmer months, some children’s allergies are year-round, especially allergies to dust and pets. Keep that in mind and don’t forget to manage your children’s allergies, even though it is winter. Be sure to regularly dust and try getting a humidifier for the home to keep the air pure for kids.

 

4.) Healthy Eating

You always want to feed your children nourishing foods, but be extra vigilant with their diets during the winter. When cooped up inside warm soups and healthy snacks are great to have on-hand to keep your kids full and happy. Also, be sure to stock up on tea and other warm beverages in case your children happen to get sick.

 

5.) Sunscreen

If your kids are going to be playing outside this season, don’t think you can skip one of the most important protective steps you take during the summer: applying sunscreen. The sun’s rays can still cause sunburn during the winter, and they can reflect off of the snow, which is another concern.

 

Try California Baby Broad Spectrum Sunscreen for a non-toxic, organic option.

 

What winter wellness tips do you follow for you kids? Share in the comments!

Tags: kids, parenting