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New Mom Tips
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: My baby is fussy so much that I feel overwhelmed, sad, and stressed all the time. What can I do?

 A: Being a new mom is rarely easy. Having a fussy baby can be very overwhelming. It is so important to have a support system of other moms! Find a local support group for moms in your area or start one such as the Proverbs 31 Sisters! (www.proverbs31sisters.org)
For those days when you feel stressed out, going out for a walk with the stroller is a fabulous idea. The exercise will relax you and ease your tension. It will also give you a good dose of endorphins which is mood elevating.
If you are feeling overwhelmed it is okay to lay your baby in his crib, kiss him, and come back 15 minutes later.

Let him nurse more. My babies were always happier when they were nursing. The house may not get cleaned, but you will still have your sanity.

As for cleaning the house, when baby is fussy the house gets messy. Determine what your biggest problems are and figure out an easy solution. Here are some tips:

Messy Toys: If you have one or more older children, toys can be a real problem. Box them ALL up except for maybe one or two favorites and put them in the attic or garage until things get easier. Rotate one toy at a time and require your child to clean up before getting another toy out. (This is the system I use in my house.)

Messy Laundry: Place baby in playpen - run to washer and load. Thirty minutes later repeat to load dryer. Thirty minutes later spend 10 minutes folding and then place baby on top of warm laundry in basket and carry him from room to room to put clothes away. Sing a happy song to him while you work. Do one load a day and you should always be on top of it. Have everyone reuse towels after bathing for one week and then wash towels once a week.

Messy Kitchen
: Use paper plates and cups for a while. Then you only have to wash pots. Use paper towels in the kitchen when cleaning up messes and wash out your dish cloth/ sponge each evening with sudsy water in the sink and a little bleach. Cook simple recipes - spaghetti, salads, chili, baked potatoes, and crock pot meals that you can put together before he wakes up in the morning.

Messy Bathroom: Clean bathroom while bathing baby. If your baby can't sit up yet, get a baby bath that you can place in the tub and let him soak safely while you wipe down floors, sink, and toilet. Never leave him alone in the water though! Clean tub as soon as you get him dressed.

Messy Floors: Vacuum while holding the baby. Ask hubby to sweep after supper and to help you clean up kitchen in the evening.

Make it a point to get up and get fully dressed first thing every morning. Fix your hair and put on some lipgloss. Spend the hours you are breastfeeding reading the Bible or reading a good Christian book that will help you grow in your faith and be a better wife and mother.
Claim a Bible promise that God has given to you and repeat it when you say your prayers. "Then Jesus said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest" (Matthew 11:28).

Meditate daily on God's Word. Everything you will ever need can be found in the pages of the Bible. I know it is not easy. But it won't be this way forever. Pray daily over your little one. God cares about him even more than you do!

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By Melissa Ringstaff, Director of www.virtuouswoman.org. Copyright © 2007 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines. Scripture taken from the NEW LIVING TRANSLATION © 1996.

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