Whether you are just entering into the season of new babies everywhere, right in the thick of it or moving into a season where visiting a new baby is far and few between – I thought it could be helpful to go over a few things to help you (and me!) out.
I reached out to over 15 girlfriends who have had babies recently and asked them the same questions – best meals, biggest no-nos, and favorite things people did when visiting. It was amazing 1) how much I learned and 2) how many common themes there were.
Before I dive in the last thing I want is for you to walk away from this post feeling like you dropped the ball when visiting someone! I have totally done some of these “no-nos” even after having kids myself. And every family and every circumstance is different! So take this all with a grain of salt – and know this is just one girlfriend sharing some suggestions to another girlfriend (and maybe sharing some things other girlfriends wouldn’t have the heart to tell ya because they love you too much).
MEETING A BABY ETIQUETTE & TIPS:
1. Wash your hands (washed them before you left the house? Wash them again. Makes everyone just feel better :))
2. Don’t over-stay (better to under-stay than over)
3. Don’t bring sick kids (or just “feeling better” kids)
4. Bring something for the mama (a bottle of wine and/or flowers makes the mama feel special)
5. Ask how you can help! If you have time, offer to run an errand for them or ask if you can wash dishes, throw in a load of laundry, or just hold the baby while mom showers etc. Or better yet, just immediately head to the sink and start loading/unloading!
6. Ask what time works best for the mom/family you are visiting. I recommend avoiding the first day home, as getting settled back/unpacked is a lot to take on with a newborn.
7. Make it just as much about the mom and the siblings as much as it is about the new baby (It feels great to have the whole family supported!)
8. If visiting in the hospital be mindful of what you bring (flowers, gifts etc. – the new parents have to pack all of that up and bring it home)
9. Don’t be overly loud (again just be mindful of the baby and the family that may be napping)
10. Offer to set-up a Meal Train or ask if they have one (this is an easy (free) way for a calendar to be coordinated for the family and can include allergies, address, preferences etc.!
The less dishes required the better (think tin disposable dishes): If it doesn’t require returned Tupperware you get bonus points – it gets overwhelming to keep track who’s is whose
Healthy snacks: Bring fresh veggies and dip or cut-up fruit for snacking
Take-out is totally acceptable: Homemade meals are amazing and such a blessing, but sometimes a simple rotisserie chicken and packaged salad is just as good (and the mom may feel less guilty receiving it). Plus if cooking isn’t your thing – this is a great solution! One of my personal favorites is when people would say something like “Noodles or Chipotle? You pick and send me your orders!” so I could choose my own meal and what sounded good.
Freezer meals: People tend to get lots of meals and visitors in the first few weeks, but when the husband is back to work it’s a real blessing to have meals as a back-up in the freezer. Also, it’s nice to not feel the pressure to eat it right away! For a girlfriend recently I went to Trader Joes and stocked up on all my favorite freezer meals and dropped those on her doorstep the first day they got home. This was great because I gave her no pressure to see/host me and hopefully helped them out in the short-term and long term!
Avoid spicy foods and beans: If the mom is nursing those two in particular can be tough on the baby’s stomach. Also make sure to ask/confirm if there are any allergies (including older kids).
Think outside the box: If cooking isn’t your thing think outside the box! What’s a gift or talent you have that you could bless a new mom with? One of my girlfriends doesn’t like to cook but is a hairstylist so she is blessing each of her girlfriends with a “mama blowout” whenever they have a baby. Brilliant!
A meal other than dinner: People typically get dinner delivered, so something like an egg bake, Monkey Bread or even lunch could be something different and equally helpful!
Prepped snacks: Meals are a blessing but healthy snacks are so helpful too! Pre-cut veggies and fruit are perfect for snack throughout the day because new-mamas can be concerned about what they put in their bodies.
Out of state suggestions: If you live out of state from a friend or family member, and want to do something to bless them and the new baby there are tons of great options. Here are a few:
- Order some prepared meals through Shipt or Instacart for delivery (Trader Joes and Costco both have awesome options for pre-made/freezer meals)
- Send flowers (my personal favorite are Farm Girl Flowers – that’s what one girlfriend sent me, that’s the bouquet in the image of this post!)
- Coordinate a day to order a meal for delivery for them (one of my family members from out of town ordered a bunch of salads and pasta salads for delivery so I had multiple healthy lunch options – it was such a blessing)
MEAL IDEAS & RECIPES:
I thought it would be fun to share a few ideas of meals that I either received and loved or other people mentioned loving. So I created a Pinterest page for this post and pinned lots of ideas! Head on over to my Pinterest page and give it a follow for easy access in the future.
And if you took the time to read this whole post – just let me tell you, YOU ARE AN AMAZING FRIEND. Your heart to want to serve and love your friends well is amazing, and they are so blessed to have you. It really takes a village and on behalf of them (and to my close friends, me) thank you. You are the best.