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HOW TO COPE WITH A BABY + A HANGOVER

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Catie Wilkins shares some practical advice...

They say ‘advice after mischief is like medicine after death’ but what do they know, the sanctimonious wazzocks. And why are they talking so loudly?

Sure, in an ideal world you wouldn't allow yourself to get drunk and then be in charge of a baby all of the next day; but we don't live in that world. And we all have to do it occasionally. So here are my tips for getting through it:

1) Little Baby Bum is your new best friend. These are nursery rhymes put to animations on YouTube and available to download. They are like baby catnip, plus they're educational, so guilt-free.

My previous efforts to employ the electronic babysitter had ended in disappointment. People recommended things like Peppa Pig and In The Night Garden, but they didn't hold my kid’s attention, she’s all about the music.

Some of them are bonkers. Baa Baa Black Sheep delivers his wool in space, for no real reason. But the hungover parent is not to reason why. It’s to let its baby stare like a zombie at a computer screen, while it musters the energy to think about going for a walk.

2) In sales, ABC stands for 'Always Be Closing'. In hungover parenting it stands for, ‘Always Bring Crisps.' Snacks are your second best friend.

I mean, sure, maybe you read 'French Children Don't Throw Food' and you were like, this ‘cadre’ thing sounds brilliant, my angels will eat at set times. But when push comes to shove, a full baby is a happy, uncomplaining baby, which is crucial in a frazzled state, when even the quietest of shrieks will rattle your teeth.

The Organix crisps are great but get devoured quite quickly. Depending on your baby’s age, raisins are awesome because they take longer to chew.

3) Location, location, location. Chucking a load of toys in a cot or travel cot is as good as a playpen. This is no time to be chasing crawlers/walkers away from all the pointy corners you haven’t got around to child-proofing yet.

If you do make the decision to go out and treat yourself to all the world’s coffee, busy places are better than quiet ones for distracting your baby so you don’t have constantly to entertain them/give them more raisins.

Good luck!

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