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We’re very excited that we are expecting baby #2, BUT the biggest question we have is “how is Ranger going to adjust to having a new baby sister in the house??” Given that he will be 23 months when she’s born, knowing if he can even grasp the concept of what is about to happen has been a big concern of mine. I will say, at first, that he had no idea what we were talking about when we said “baby sister”, but as time has gone on and the more we’ve talked about it the more he is grasping the idea of a baby coming. I know there’s probably a million ways to prep your little one for a new sibling, but here’s what we’ve done to help a little one who’s almost 2 get ready for a sister.
- I started by letting him go to the store and pick out a “baby” to start holding and having around. We got the this one (here) that was small and easy for him to hold and it came with a little bottle for him to “feed” her. It has been a big success. I pulled out one of his baby bouncers (like this one here) that he used to sit in that we’re using for Everly so that he could put his baby in it. He’s been so sweet about picking her up, feeding her, wiping her down and loving on her. Here’s the way I look at it… it has helped him in one of two ways: he will either be more excited about a little human living in our home and know how to help her OR he will feed his baby and hold his baby while I feed Everly. Either way, it’s a win-win.
- We’ve bought a slew of “Bringing Baby Home” type books. He loves certain ones over others, but he’s really started to see the roles of a big brother. I suggest finding a character that they like and see if they have any sort of stories about becoming a big sibling. We love Daniel Tiger so we have the book about when they bring Baby Margret home and he LOVES it.
- Here are our favorites:
- Since Ranger will be 23 months when Everly gets here, he hasn’t started to grasp what’s going to happen until later in my pregnancy, but since he has we’ve taken him to our final few doctor appointment and let him be a part of them. I was so baffled that he was able to put together that the baby in my belly was the baby on the ultra sound screen. (Note: they weren’t always the easiest appointments with him there, but him getting to be a part of it will hopefully help with the transition and totally worth it.)
- As time has drawn closer (the last 2 months) we’ve really pumped up being a big brother and what he will do to help. We ask “Who’s going to be a big brother?” and he points at himself with pride. We ask him what a big brother will do and who he will love to play with; just really making him a big part of the whole thing and hopefully explaining to him what it will be like.
- Play dates. We’ve had play dates with anyone who has a baby and is willing to let Ranger play with them and “practice” on them. Example: my sister just had a baby, so she will bring her over so he can get used to a baby in his house in all of the baby things (besides him or his baby doll in them). He’s learned how to be “gentle” and tickle her toes and kiss her and lay next to her. Pretty much melts my heart every time. He also picked up on a baby say “wah” and does it when you ask him what a baby says.
- We’ve also kept Ranger in his “nursery” for now. I’ve decided that he’s not quite ready to be out of his crib and it seems to be his secure and happy place. So he will stay in there for now and Everly will of course sleep in our room for a few months. At that point we will move him to a “Big Boy Room” and transition the nursery for her. I think this bit of normalcy will help him with the transition.
This is all we’ve done on our own merit or from the suggestions of others. What advice to y’all have for us as we make this transition??