One sound piece of advice I received when I was pregnant was to make freezer meals to eat after the baby was born. Family and friends will be all too happy to drop off food, but that doesn’t last forever. Also, people tend to be more excited and supportive for the first and second baby, but beyond that, the more children you have the less likely you are to get any help. It doesn’t make sense to me, but that’s just the way that it is. I guess people assume that you’ve done it before and can handle it yourself - clearly, they either don’t know or have forgotten the challenge of cooking with baby. Not to mention, having a baby is physically and mentally exhausting, no matter what number you’re on. Planning ahead for yourself will make things much easier and ensure a smoother transition in the long run.
The Do’s of Babywearing Safety While Cooking:
Meal prep - make a few frozen meals that you can heat up when the free food stops flowing. Continue the practice once a week to plan for your week ahead.
Utilize a crockpot or instant pot when cooking with baby to avoid open flames.
Make dinner in the morning, since the witching hour usually hits around dinner time. This is the time most babies and toddlers start to meltdown. Trying to make a meal while they’re fussy is difficult, so avoid it altogether and make dinner in the mornings.
If you are cooking with baby in the evening and baby is holding their own head up, wear baby on your back.
Make simple meals. Sandwiches, fresh fruit, and vegetables are great. And yes, microwaveable meals are just fine. It’s all good.
If you need to get low to grab a bowl or other cooking utensil, SQUAT. Don’t bend at the waist.
If cooking isn’t your thing, don’t stress. Have Fun! Put on some music and dance around the kitchen, sing, and enjoy yourself. If you’re having fun, baby will relax more and getting a quick meal on the table will be easier.
The Don’ts of Babywearing Safety While Cooking:
Never attempt to hold your baby or babywear while cooking on the stove with a live flame.
Cooking with baby should never include cutting, slicing, or dicing while babywearing. Little legs may swing at the wrong moment or curious hands may reach in to grab something they shouldn’t.
Never sit baby in a bumbo, swing, or other baby chair on top of the counter. Accidents happen and this is an easy one to avoid.
Don’t plan elaborate meals. It’s Murphy’s Law…you may have a laid-back baby, but the evening you go to plan a four-course meal is going to be the first evening baby’s diaper blows up the back. So keep it simple!
Remember, you’ve got this mama! Cooking with baby is no joke, but it’s totally possible. Remember the above babywearing safety tips, and you’ll do just fine. And if all else fails, there’s no shame in the take-out game! 😊