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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Aug 2013
    Posts
    250

    Stay At Home Moms

    I'm still getting used to being a SAHM with my almost 4 month old, Jem. I was a nanny before so it shouldn't be THAT different, yet it is! I guess maybe because its just one baby? I'm used to toddlers, babies, multiple children at once.

    I find myself getting really bored during the day! I'm trying to train him to take all his naps in his crib, instead of on me, but I honestly sometimes WANT to hold him because I don't know what else to do with myself!

    I try to divide the day up- when he wakes Up we have some down time in bed. I get dressed, eat breakfast, get ready for the day, etc. while he watches me in his bouncy chair. Then we play a little, then his first nap. He wakes, I feed him, we go outside for half an hour or so until he gets a little cranky. We come back inside, play a little, then second nap. After second nap we feed, and try and go on an outing. He cries a lot and is rather high maintenance so I never am able to do anything like grocery shop. We usually just walk around somewhere new and different. Third nap. Eat. Play. Hubby comes home, and then he has 'daddy time' for a few hours while I cook dinner, run errands, clean, or have some 'me' time.

    My questions-

    1. Is my day to centered around Jem instead of integrating him into MY day and life? I think since I was a nanny this is just what I'm used to. Should I be doing chores, cooking, running errands with him and just let him cry through it and get used to it? Will he even get used to it? Or will it just be torture and stress for both of us?
    2. What do you usually do during nap times when the house is clean? We don't have cable. There is only so much web surfing I enjoy. I would love suggestions of both productive things and things to do just to relax.
    3. How do you get the absolute best out of being a stay at home mom?

    Even if your not a SAHM, if you have suggestions, I'd love to hear them

  2. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    672
    I have been staying home for two and a half years now. I really love it. I love having all of this time with my son and it is nice and low stress for us as a family. That said, it is not a good fit for everybody. You have to do what works best for you and your family, whether that means staying home or working outside the home or working from home.

    1) Both. Obviously you don't want to stick him in the bouncy seat and ignore him all day while he cries while you get your housework done. BUT it is good to just incorporate him into your day rather than centering the whole day around him. This is trickier with a baby this young, but even at this age, I would put Lev in the ergo and vacuum or whatever. I would let him play on a quilt on the floor while I folded laundry- he really seemed to enjoy watching me fold laundry. You can play peekaboo with the dishtowels, etc. Put him in a bouncy seat or in a high chair in the kitchen while you cook, that kind of thing. Be ready to drop stuff and go back home to respond to his needs, but do run errands with him. Most babies really like to get out of the house. Sometimes I think they just cry from ennui, honestly. You can clip the infant car seat to the shopping cart and wheel him around the grocery store and all of the old ladies will tell you how cute he is. If you are in the car or out during a nap, don't worry too much. He will be fine.

    2) Back when there were this many naps, I did a lot of sewing and reading and started the Rosetta Stone for Spanish. If you can get some kind of project going, that can help a lot. Now there is just one nap and that is easily filled up with cooking (I usually make dinner during nap) and cleaning.

    3) Join a mom group! Even if you are not a joiner, find out and try it out. Having other stay at home mom friends is really, really helpful. Plus you can take him to meetings and not have to worry about him fussing or needing to be nursed or whatever, b.c everyone has been there/done that.

    My next door neighbor raised her kids back in the 1960s and she was talking about how all of the moms were out in the front yards during the day, hanging out with each other and letting the kids run around. It is just not like that anymore. Most people are not home during the day, so you really have to seek out the people who are.

    Find stuff to do during the day, even stuff he is not old enough for yet. Take him to library story time. If you can get memberships to things like the local children's museum, start taking him there. You will meet other moms there and you can get out and see things before you go mad and start dusting the baseboards with a toothbrush.

    If you are still bored, consider watching another child in your home during the day. You mentioned being a nanny before. In some ways, multiple children are easier than just one. I started watching a neighbor's baby a few days a week back in January and it has been a nice way to make a little extra money without having to arrange for childcare for my kid.

  3. #5
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Location
    Santa Clarita
    Posts
    903
    Here are my thoughts (the short version):

    #1. It's a balance of both.

    #2. n/a (the house is never without things to clean!). I nap when he naps. But if I suddenly found myself without something to clean or the need for a nap of my own, I would read or do a yoga dvd or something. Or call a friend to catch up.

    #3. I'd like to second the "library story time" idea. early literacy is a much bigger deal than most people think, in my humble opinion.

    I started to love being an SAHM when I started thinking about it as a huge privilege for me, and a great opportunity to be a different parent than mine were, rather than unpaid labor while my husband got to frolic around winning awards at school and work (yes, I did have a little bit of a bad attitude at first). When I talk to working moms these days, I feel grateful for the relative abundance of time with my kids--time to encourage them when they're p*ssed off about a homework assignment, time to talk about things, time to arrange playdates. It's really hard (at least, from my limited perspective) for the working parents I know to fit everything in.
    Mom to James Daniel (10) William Joseph (9), Elise Marie (7), and Zachary Allan (1)
    http://letterstoauntkay.blogspot.com/

    TTC #5
    Serena (Seri), Audrey, Rose, Naomi, Diana, Kate, Adele, Georgia, Lucy, Linnea, Clara
    Thomas Christopher, Henry, Orin, Arthur, Samuel

    DH's "approved" list:
    Seri, Naomi, Amy, Diana, Lucy, Kate/Katie/Katherine, Audrey
    Thomas ("maybe")

  4. #7
    Join Date
    Dec 2012
    Posts
    2,654
    I will be staying at home once our first baby comes in late November.

    I would definitely say start taking your son to the grocery store with you, he will get used to it.

    As for when he is napping, do you enjoy reading? I would say start reading or as others have said begin a project. Scrapbooking? Crocheting?

    I totally agree with the berry suggestions of taking your son to story time at the library and finding a moms group to join.

    Good luck!

  5. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2012
    Posts
    372
    Being a stay at home Mom is the best thing in the world for me! Our daughter is our world. When I think of how hard my own Mom worked 3 jobs just to get food on the table for us, I know how blessed my daughter is to have me at home with her. I cherish every single moment. Everyone says these years go by too fast. I'm not going to waste it. She has always been a content baby and her eyes light up when she is learning new things. When she is napping and my chores are done, I enjoy making home made toys and different learning games for her. (many ideas available online and through pinterest) The newness of each activity is a brain stimulant and when the game is repeated a few days later it is such a joy to see how much she remembers! I do also take some me time. I enjoy reading, cross stitching, painting and I'm slowly working toward my MBA with online classes.

    My frame of mind right now......BE HAPPY! Know How Blessed You Are and Live for Today!
    Mother to little~Francine Annika~

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