Like most mums, newborn babies take my breath away. The sight of a new baby at the supermarket just puts a spring in my step and a smile on my face. I love meeting new mums with their newborns and this always makes me want another one, until I remember the work involved! If you are the mum of a newborn you might like some quick and nifty tips for making those first few years memorable, instead of workload full. Learn tips on baby accessories, bedroom decor tips, ideas for play and more. Whatever you need, this list will help you to enjoy all those precious moments more by giving you more time and sanity.
Cheap Baby Food at Aldi
These are a great buy from Aldi. They are just a few bucks and are excellent for a quick and healthy snack for baby.
Do not make feeding stressful for babies. Put food on the plate and let baby pick off the plate. Make sure the food is in nice easy to digest pieces. Also checkout our Turbo Tip list on how to hide fruit and veggies in food.
Apple for baby
Aldi sell great pureed apple for baby.
Freeze bulk baby food using leftovers from family meals. E.g. Lasagne or pumpkin soup.
Save on baby food
Give baby what the family eats. Invest in an electric hand blender.
Make your own
Make your own. It is healthier and cheaper.
Trick for sparkling bottles
Shake bottles well with vinegar and rice to make them sparkle and also to take the milk odour out. Rinse well. This makes them look new and shiny.
Cups as bowls
Cups or mugs make perfect little feeding dishes for baby.
Cheaper than formula
Breastfeed for longer: It is cheaper than buying formula.
Freezing breast milk
Zip lock bags work fine for freezing breast milk. Use a permanent marker to label the date on each packet of milk.
See how baby goes
Be careful forking out big money on breast pumps. See how baby goes first before investing. You can always hand express the first few times until you know you are going to need or use a breast pump.
Hand pumps suffice
Often the old fashioned hand pumps are more effective and comfortable. Try first before making this big investment. Check out secondhand breast pumps on sale. Often they have never been used and are still new in the pack.
Be careful in the car
Never let baby nibble on food in his or her car seat while driving. Be especially vigilant with having music cranked up loud. Always have music soft enough so that you hear any small whimper from your baby. Mirrors for seeing baby are a great investment.
Extra rug on carpet
Protect your carpet by bringing a second hand rug into your living room. That way if you are feeding baby it will go on the rug and not on your gorgeous carpet. Splat mats are great but are not always practical if you are in a hurry.
Healthy food while out
A plate of soft veggies at Asian eateries at food halls offer great nutritious value.
Bakery food is easy
Bakeries generally have good choices for bubs to nibble on.
My baby loves Mexican
Mexican food outlets in food halls will make up a little tup of beans, mince, avocado and sour cream for baby. Coco loves this Mexican medley while we are out at the mall.
Go the humble muffin
Muffins are a great choice while eating out at a Caf
A sandwich is simple
When eating out order a simple sandwich at a sandwich shop or bakery. E.g. Egg and mayo.
Fruit shop quick stop
For quick healthy food on the run stop at a fruit shop and grab some strawberries or bananas.
Cheap splat mat
Buy a cheap old style vinyl tablecloth from your local op shop for a cheap splat mat.
When to buy formula
Buy formula when it is on special only. Keep at least two so that when you run low you will not run out and you will never be caught out.
Generic formula at chemists
Chemists stock their own generic brand formula and can offer advice on their products. Their prices are good and they can also offer excellent advise on which product is best for your baby.
Repurpose your body pillow
There is no need to invest in expensive feeding pillows. If you bought a full body pillow for pregnancy repurpose it as your breastfeeding pillow. It wraps around tummy and baby nicely.
For older babies keep a packet of arrowroot or shortbread biscuits in a plastic container in the car to give to a hungry toddler while travelling. There is nothing harder or more dangerous than a screaming baby to distract you while driving. This also prevents stopping at a Service Station and buying expensive snacks.
Research formula early
From the outset check out the cheapest and best place to buy the type of formula you need. Consult a chemist for advice. Try not to get sucked into branding. Check ingredients on the packets.
Grab a video on YouTUBE and make your own feeding cushion or see my post on reusing your preggie body cushion if you have one.
Put just the right amount of food on the plate. It is best to put little amounts on a plate which means that baby is not overwhelmed by the choices. Add to the plate as baby eats. This way you will also not be continually wasting food and precious money.
Use easy grip utensils
Use baby spoons and forks with easy grips. Baby will get the hang of feeding quicker. I picked some really cheap ones at Ikea for a few dollars.
Keep gear nice for resale
Wipe down your highchair after every meal thoroughly and keep it nice for resale.
Quick snack for toddler
A quick snack for a growing toddler is penne pasta with melted grated cheese on top. Keep some cooked pasta in the fridge for a quick meal. Add some grated carrot and peas for a veggie fix.
Sipper cup fun
As soon as baby can hold one introduce a sipper cup. Toddlers love to carry them around and sip on them so in summer you can be sure your baby is well hydrated.
Be patient when feeding
If baby loves to feed themselves be patient. Sit with baby and help them to help themselves. You will have baby trained up in no-time.
Puree your own fruit
Buy the larger tins of fruit and puree yourself using an electric hand blender.
Try your toddler on couscous
Couscous is a cheap and quick-to-make option as a base for baby food.
Definitely have big cook-ups and stashes of freezer food for baby. They always get hungry earlier so get their meal out of the way first. Prop self-feeding babies up in the highchair while you are cooking for the rest of the family. Sometimes I will put Coco in her safe little bath bucket while I am cooking which is a great win-win. She has fun while I get dinner on the table.
Relaxing with baby
Try not to get caught up in rigid routines. Rather, try to have loose routines. Babies and kids have a way of changing any routine you manage to set anyway. You will be a happier mum if you have a flexible and adaptable attitude.
New food tip
Eat new food in front of baby and make it look exciting.
Grate veggies and hide them in meals. Be sure to check out my QUICK LIST on HIDING VEGGIES IN FOOD too. There are many easy and likeable suggestions on this list.
Help your toddler by helping them to put the food on the fork or spoon.
Hide veggies in fritters for babies who only want to feed themselves or when they get to that stage.
Sticky hands are OK
Just for fun let baby play with leftovers on the plate after finishing. They will make Weetbix mud pies and then rub through their hair but gosh this makes for such great photo opportunities and fun.
Repackage baby food
Keep shop bought baby food jars to repackage your own homemade baby food. The measures are perfect.
Let baby try to feed themselves. Even if they make a huge mess. The sooner they learn the better, especially if they are showing interest in being independent.
Make evenings pleasant by organising dinner during the day ready to be reheated or in the crock pot.
Save time and money on baby food
Mince up what you are having for dinner. Save time and money. It will also make the family eat healthier generally. If it cannot be minced improvise.
Use normal oats
Oats also make a great brekky for baby. Just use the normal kind for babies older than 10 months.
Babies love to pick
For older babies place pieces of potato and soft carrot on the plate. They love to feed themselves.
Hide fruit in muffins
Buy the large cans of fruit, puree up and then hide the fruit in a good batch of muffins.
Hide veggies in fritters
Buy cans of soft veggies, puree up the veggies and then hide the veggies in batches of fritters or rissoles.
Cheap kids bowls and cups
Second hand shops always have plastic picnic ware. These are great for kids bowls and cups.
Trick for freezing baby food
Silicon muffin trays make great baby food freezer compartments. Pop out the food once frozen and place into large zip lock bags for easy access.
Weetbix is the easiest brekky I have found for feeding Coco. I simply wet the weetbix with boiling water to make it mushy and then add cold milk to cool it down. Add sugar and test. Breakfast is done.
How to get bulk discounts
Start a group on this website and then contact manufacturers. See if you can get bulk discounts for big spend items like nappies.
Do not underestimate the power of Kmart, BigW and Target for cheap formula prices.
Feed leftover formula to plants or pets. Try not to waste it.
Make half bottles and save
Make up half a bottle and feed it to baby. If baby wants more you can make more. If not, you haven
Save formula when travelling
Take warm water out in the bottle and add the formula when you need to feed baby. This saves much money because you will never have to throw out full bottles of milk that went to waste.
Start a baby food co-op
Do a food co-op with other mums for baby food. Each mum makes one kind and you all swap. Start a group on this site.
Leftovers as baby food
After eating dinner every night mince up the leftovers such as a pasta you made. You can even roast meat and veggies and place this meal into portions in the freezer. This way you will always have meals on hand for a hungry baby. I use my ever faithful electric hand blender for the job. These are a great investment especially when travelling or staying overnight as a guest. You can always mince up what dinner is on hand.
Help baby eat meat
Grate meat and put it in mash for an easy to digest dinner for an older baby.
Feeding baby solids
Feed solids to baby when you think your baby is ready for solids. Not all babies are at the same stage books dictate them to be.
I purchased a plastic microwave steamer from my op shop which I have used more so often. It cost me $1.00
Easy water when feeding
Use a thermos for boiled water throughout the day and night for water for bottles. It saves continually boiling the kettle.
Keep your lid on
This is a great tip from my mother-in-law. Invest in Tupperware where the lids have hinges (lids attached). Many $2 shops have these. I picked up a great set at Ikea where the lids attach but they can also detach. No more losing lids.
Can you make it yourself?
Make your own: Always ask can I make that out of something? Your own wrap. Can I make that into something? Draw divider.