Blogger | Mom of One
When you’re pregnant and waiting for baby number two, three, or four to arrive, it’s every parent’s thought, “What will my other children think when they hear another baby is on the way?”
While it’ll of course be life-changing for Mom and Dad, it’ll also be an adjustment for the other kids, especially if it’s baby number two since you’ll then be first introducing the idea of siblings into your already established threesome.
If your other children are old enough to understand, as your belly grows and you start anticipating the arrival of the new baby, begin to let them know what to expect. They will see mommy’s belly grow, a new nursery being formed and new preparations being made all around.
After the news is out, it’s time to build exciting about what it means to become a big sister or brother. Here are a few suggestions we have to include your kids in the process and have fun along the way!
- Art project for baby. Buy some plain white onesies, small canvases or painting paper and have your child create some art or outfits for baby. Oftentimes this impromptu art project can make great wall décor for the nursery and surely will make the older sibling feel a part of welcoming the new baby into the home.
- Count it down. Create some sort of countdown clock until baby arrival date (get creative!). Whether it’s a wall calendar or a countdown clock, do something to get the kids excited for baby’s arrival.
- Shop around. Make your kids part of the “shopping for baby” experience. Have them help pick out any additional furniture or décor you need for baby’s room, new clothes, paint color for the room, new bottles/bibs, etc. The can even “shop” their own rooms and storage areas to find clothes and other items to “hand down” to the new baby. Making them a part of the process allows them to feel important and included, and they may just learn something along the way too.
- Gift exchange. Before baby has arrived, let your children each pick out one small gift they want to give to baby when he/she arrives. On the flip side, many parents like to get a small gift for each child “from the baby” for the first time the baby meets his/her other siblings.
- Read books. There are so many amazing books and authors out there who write about how to prepare older siblings for a new baby. You can find many wonderful books that make a story out of baby’s arrival and also teach kids how to be a great big brother or sister. One of our favorites is the Mom’s Choice Award-winning book Not Yet, Rose by Susanna Hill. This book is about a little girl who is waiting for the birth of her baby brother. She isn’t sure what to expect about her new role as a big sister or whether she wants a baby at all. When her new brother arrives, suddenly everything seems just right.
Share with us additional ideas you have used to make this transition and learning process fun for all and how you got the whole family prepared and excited for the changes to come!
This post was original posted on the now-defunct Mom’s Choice Matters blog on 8/30/2011.
About Charlotte Cavalier
Charlotte is a blogger for Mom’s Choice Awards. She is a mom of one. View all posts by Charlotte Cavalier here.