Everyone always brings gifts for the baby, even on Christmas. The teeny tiny socks, sweet head bands, books that bring back memories – these gifts are loved by the buyer and the receiver; however, the holidays are here and it’s time to think about the mother that birthed (or is about to birth) that gorgeous, giggling baby.
This article can be summed up with one word:
Unless the bumpin’ mama-to-be, or new to mama-hood mother does not drink, wine is ALWAYS a safe gift idea! No need to spring for one expensive bottle – just gift 2 or 3 bottles that are descent. She (and her partner) will be more than happy. There’s just something about enjoying a glass of wine after getting the baby to sleep in the evening. I’m not saying that mama should get sloshed, but a glass at the end of a long day is a great way to reconnect with the spouse and mellow out together.
Okay. Okay. So you are looking for other ideas? You already thought of wine, but want to gift something else as well? There are several ways to think through the gift options.
Factors that play into your gift selection:
Location: If this mama is local to you, bring your gift in person, spend the day with her, and enjoy a holiday together. She will love the company and friendship. Pregnancy has a way of isolating women. Sometimes down time with someone we love is just what we need. If you are miles apart and an in-person trip is not doable right now, still send her your love over the phone, via skype, and through snail mail (or not-so-snail-like one day delivery). Gift cards, meal delivery, wine delivery, or a thoughtful gift basket full of her favorites will make her smile!
Budget: If you are working with a small budget, consider skipping spending the money and give the gift of your time. Watch her older kids (or the baby) while she naps, clean the house, fold some laundry, prepare dinner, or just reserve an afternoon to spend with her.
Appropriate gifts can be found at all price ranges. You can send her to a well-deserved day at the spa if your bank account allows. You can splurge on items that she would never purchase for herself now that all she thinks about are sweet baby items to purchase. Or, you can meet her for a pedicure and lunch one day.
Relationship: This is a big factor. Is this new mama your sister, sister-in-law, best friend, co-worker, or more of an acquaintance? There are so many levels of relationships. You can’t give your sister-in-law a gift you would give an acquaintance. Well, you can, but you probably shouldn’t. There’s a difference between dropping off a gift card for coffee, and bringing her a new robe and slippers. But I’ll leave your relationship status up to you. I’ll just provide a bunch of great gift ideas.
Gift Ideas for Every New Mom
- My Baby’s Heartbeat Animal: Hearing the baby’s heartbeat just fills a mother with happiness, comforts her worries, connects her to the baby, and brings the entire family closer together. If baby is still baking, send mama a sweet heartbeat animal so her doctor or midwife can record that beautiful sound. It will be the gift she keeps forever.
- Massage: Pregnancy does a number on a woman’s body. While carrying the watermelon-sized human around, we get stiff, sore, and tired. A prenatal massage is like spending an hour in Heaven. For the new mom, an hour of quiet is bliss. Add in being rubbed on? Yes, please.
- Clean her house or hire a cleaner: Even just one cleaning session will be an amazing gift! The amount of laundry that a tiny human causes it mind-numbing. Trying to keep up with that (and cloth diapers possibly) is enough, but add in remembering to vacuum under couches and wipe down window sills? The flag of defeat may be waved. Even having the house cleaned once, or once a month is a HUGE help.
- Offer to watch the older kids: One afternoon a week (or bi-weekly, or monthly) offer to entertain any other tots she may have so she can nap with baby.
- Pedicure: Being pampered feels great, and pampering herself will be bumped to the bottom of the list after baby arrives. You know what would make this gift even better? Being a part of it! Join her and make her laugh, remind her that she is human, and beautiful, and fun!
- Hair Appointment: There’s this moment after baby arrives (For me it’s about 8-12 weeks afterward) that I just feel BLAH. The hair starts falling out, the skin dulls, and the hormones wipe you out. I go through this ridiculous ritual where I let my hair grow long until I am pregnant and have baby, then I chop it all into a long bob. There is something so freeing and beautifying about getting a new hair style and some highlights. It just makes you feel alive again.
- Books or Book Device: Moms spend a lot of time sitting and breastfeeding. It is easy to feel disconnected or just plain bored. There are only so many daytime TV shows Mom can tune into before your brain shuts off. A device that allows Mom to instantly pull up a new book is a great investment. You can even load it up with a few of your favorite easy-to-read page turners.
- Gift Cards for new clothing or nursing bras: Clothing is so fun to receive as a gift! The problem is that a new mom is unsure of her size, and of what styles will flatter her right now. Let her hold onto the gift card until she is ready to shop. Then you can join her and help her spend your gift!
- Pajamas: I won’t lie; I live in workout pants, leggings, and pajamas throughout pregnancy and until my pre-pregnancy clothes fit again! New pajamas will make a great gift. She will feel pretty as she hangs out in PJ’s all day long.
- Robe: Along the lines of the pajamas, except that a robe is an easy to throw on item if someone knocks on the door. She’ll also love to slip it on after a bath.
- Slippers: Shoes are for people who leave the house. Slippers are for moms who are snuggling with a baby while the winter winds blow outside!
- Loose fitting, flowy dress: The body likes to hold on to the pregnancy belly and keeps it feeling a bit like a “bowl full of jelly” for a while after birth. A pretty dress that does not hug the “Mommy Belly” area is a great gift idea.
**Rule for clothing: It must provide easy access to the breasts. New moms won’t wear something if they struggle to breastfeed in it.**
- Cute mom shoes: High heels are NOT on this list. Think cute flats, winter boots to pair with her mommy-leggings, or even nice flip flops she can throw on and run out the door.
- Baby-friendly jewelry: Some brilliant mothers took the jewelry industry by storm and created funky, fun jewelry that baby can play with and even chew on! (My favorite: Chewbeads)
- A beautiful (and practical) baby carrier: Wraps, Ring slings, and structured carriers can add up on the pocket book. But a good carrier for babywearing is life changing for Mom. The fabrics and patterns selection is astronomical. Don’t get too overwhelmed when choosing, ask her if she has a preference. The easiest choice is an ErgoBaby, LillieBaby, or other soft-structured buckle carrier. Although, my personal favorite is a beautiful fabric ring sling for the newborn stage!
- A gorgeous diaper bag: Purchase one that she wouldn’t buy herself. Petunia Pickle Bottom is always my go-to, but there is a huge selection out there. Make sure that it is a practical size with pockets and areas to utilize.
- Herbal sitz bath ingredients, essential oils/candles, and a wine glass holder that can suction to the bathtub wall: Yes to all of this. I would LOVE this gift. An herbal sitz bath helps the body heal after labor. Not to mention just how amazing it feels to be alone in a bathtub. Add music, beautiful smells, and a glass of wine, and I may never get out!
- Gift Card for Starbucks or local coffee shop: Moms run on very little uninterrupted sleep. It’s ok; somehow our bodies just adapt to this. However, we are tired. Treating a new mom to her favorite fancy caffeinated beverage is a wonderful gift idea.
- A high quality tea assortment: Making a hot cup of tea while baby is napping is quite a treat. There are so many fancy teas out there. Making a little assortment pack for her to try may be fun.
- A basket of goodies for a date night at home: Include an envelope with a few dollars in it to rent a redbox movie. Jar up some uncooked pasta, a nice vegetable sauce, wine, wine glasses, popcorn, and chocolate. Place it all in a pretty basket and attach a bow and card. This is the kind of gift that will be remembered.
No matter what gift you choose, choose it with love. She will love you for just picking up the phone to call – or for showing up to hug her in person. Don’t overthink it. She already loves you!