Between all the late night feedings, early morning snuggles, and thousands of pictures taken, it can seem like there isn’t enough time for structured activities during your baby’s first year. While having a newborn can certainly be a whirlwind, if you set aside specific time to do these things you’ll be happy with it down the road. Here are the top four things to do with your baby in their first year.
Cast Handprints and Footprints
Though all those late nights seem to last forever when you’re in the midst of them, they will pass by way too quickly. Your baby will only be little for a short while, so it’s important to capture their small size as a memory you can treasure as they grow. One great way to do this is to make casts of their handprints and footprints with clay or another shape-holding substance. By baking these castings, you will be left with a permanent memory of just how small your baby was during their first year.
Get Baby Pictures Taken
Another way to remember your baby’s small size is to get baby pictures done. To ensure you get spectacular results, it’s important that you choose someone who markets themselves specifically as a newborn photographer. Newborn and infant photography is a unique art form that works quickly to capture the perfect picture amidst a baby’s wiggles and ever-changing moods.
Join a Stroller Fitness Class
If you’re itching to burn off some of that baby weight, then a stroller fitness class can be a great first-year activity for you and your baby. Stroller fitness classes are unique in that they allow you to get a great workout in while keeping your baby involved by using the weight of them and their stroller to increase resistance for cardio and muscle toning. Plus, stroller fitness classes allow you to meet other moms of little ones, so you can also form a great support network as you all collectively experience the highs and lows of raising a child.
Learn Basic Sign Language
Though you will quickly learn what your baby’s various cries mean, it’s still helpful when your baby can tell you more directly what they need. One way to increase their communication skills is to teach them basic sign language during their first year. Signs for words like “more,” “thank you,” and others are helpful as you seek to understand your child’s needs and wants. This will also help them develop the foundations for language before they start speaking. A bonus of starting this early is that you can continue to teach them new signs as they grow older.
Though you’ve probably heard it a thousand times, it bears repeating again: treasure this first year. While the days may be long, the year will be short. Before you know it, you’ll have a toddler, then a child, then a teenager, then an adult, and you’ll wonder where all that time went. Through the ups and the downs, do all that you can to savor every moment and store it in your heart as a memory you can keep for the rest of your life.
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Meghan Belnap is a freelance writer who enjoys spending time with her family. She loves being in the outdoors and exploring new opportunities whenever they arise. Meghan finds happiness in researching new topics that help to expand her horizons. She highly recommends using a newborn photographer when getting 1-year pictures with your baby.
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