Managing Older Siblings While Breastfeeding

Rupal Asodaria

Busy Basket

Breastfeeding your baby is a wondrous bonding experience. It is a time when you can sit and enjoy your baby, give them sustenance. A time to be at peace with your little one. Sometimes it is a time that requires work and focus: the baby is fussy, latching is not natural, or sickness is going around. Either way it is a time where you need to devote your attention fully to that child.

Busy Basket-New Mom-Older Sibling-Breastfeeding Mom-NursElet Blog

When you have a new older sibling this can be a hard transition for them. A time when Mommy’s attention is no longer solely on them. A time when it seems like they are glued to your hip or wanting to get into trouble for attention. This is where the busy basket is a game changer!  

As mother’s we want to show the older siblings, our firstborns, that they are still loved and special. To ease this transition and solidify to the new older sibling their belonging in the family (and to keep their little hands and minds occupied while you are in the throws) a busy basket will help. A simple basket with toys and special gifts for this sibling will help them feel nurtured when your attention needs to be on baby.  

This can be something you shop for together with said sibling before the newest member of the family arrives. A time to bond together before the baby comes. Or it can be a surprise, a present for after their arrival. Either way it will show them they are loved and cared for even after the new baby arrives and the attention is no longer solely on them.

What makes up a busy basket? It doesn’t need to be a lot! The goal is to fill the basket with items that would keep your oldest interested in what is in the basket. Simple toys and activities your child loves. These items should be tailored for each child. Start with a simple bin or basket to begin, this can be something that is tailored to the design of your home if you want it to feel hidden or something that is tailored to the interests of your child. After you pick the basket it’s time customize the contents to fit each child. The key is simple toys that are easy for you to put back in the basket after each feeding. Figurine sets, cars, no-mess markers, simple books focused on your child’s latest love. If your child loves to copy you could even add a baby doll and bottle to the basket so they can help feed their own baby! If your child loves dress up this is the perfect opportunity to buy those new stress up shoes, a purse, or pretend makeup. If they are into dinosaurs, cars, transformers, Waldorf toys, or the farm there are small and medium sized toys for all of these areas and more. If your child is a snacker, add small simple snacks to the basket as well, maybe they can drink milk while the baby drinks too.

A busy basket helps you be super mom and give attention to both (or all) kids while still being able to enjoy bonding with your new littlest one. Bring out their special basket during feedings, change up a toy or two every so often and keep the bonding going. It will stay a special basket between you and the older sibling and they will be so excited each time that basket comes down.

Guest Blogger: Katy Krupnik

She is the owner of The Tidy Cottage a professional organizing company. She loves to blog and to share tips.  

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