Mom, are we there yet? Holiday Roadtripping Planning & Tips

Mommy Wellness is brave enough to guarantee you that as a seasoned parent, most of you would have heard those words over and over again being uttered from the back seat, especially during long-distance road trips.

Little do they know that you are literally still only around the corner from home, with hundreds of kilometres ahead before reaching your destination!

Oh boy, it’s going to be a long, long trip!

Mommy Wellness has put together a few ‘road-tripping with kids’ ideas, hints and tips, in the hope that upon your return home, you will still have all your marbles intact.

START BY WRITING TO-DO LISTS (LOTS OF THEM)!

Besides sorting out your home, pet-sitters, paying monthly accounts, buying new clothing, Christmas shopping, continuing with everyday family life ……. oh gosh, the list just goes on and on, we are sure you get our drift when still having to prepare and pack for your long-awaited annual holiday.

Believe it or not, you are human and the only way you are going to cope is by writing everything down.  Tried, tested and a winning recipe for many years!

Create separate lists for household, kids, car, family members, etc.

Always remember to add servicing, tyres, oil, water, etc. and getting the battery checked to your vehicle list.

Include on the kids’ list what you will need to pack for them and another list of gifts to be purchased and wrapped before leaving.

Remember to pack a torch, your medical card and have a little extra cash on hand for possible contingencies.

ALWAYS PLAN YOUR ROUTE BEFORE-HAND

Regardless of how many times you may have made the same trip before, always plan your route ahead of time.  With today’s modern technology, it could save hours of traveling time by knowing the quickest routes, taking into consideration road works and possible traffic jams, particularly over the Festive period.

PACKING SNACKS IS NON-NEGOTIABLE

Regardless of how short the trip, it is amazing how suddenly the back-seat peanut gallery erupts the minute you think you are all strapped in, settled and ready to go.

Plan your snack pack so that there is something yummy for everyone.  The strip packs of dried fruit, nuts, raisins, etc. are really handy for this purpose.

For longer trips, cut off the lid of a larger box and fill it with a variety of goodies.  This allows for easy access, instead of rummaging around for whatever it is that someone is wanting, or more likely, for which they are screaming hysterically!

KEEP ESSENTIALS WITHIN EASY REACH

Handy ‘must-haves’ like sunscreen, drinking water, wet wipes, hand sanitizer and a change of clothing for younger kids should all be close at hand for those inevitable mishaps.  It is also a good idea to establish toll road fees before leaving and have the correct amount of cash available, just in case the card machine at the toll road is not functioning.

PLAN PACKING SPACE CAREFULLY

When packing the car, remember that there will probably be gifts that need to be packed too.  Allow enough space for these and hopefully even more for the return trip, as chances are that Granny, Aunty and Uncle So-and-So and all the cousins will be spoiling your family too.  Your return trip is bound to require more space.

BUY A FEW INEXPENSIVE TOYS AND GAMES

Kids love new toys and games and although they are sure to receive many when visiting family at Christmas time, those will only help on the return trip.  You still need to get there.  Keep whatever surprises you buy until you hit the road.

This is also a great way of keeping kids occupied other than with mobile phones, tablets or other technology.

STOP REGULARLY FOR WEE-WEE BREAKS

We all want to get to where we are going as soon as possible.  Long trips are tedious and although by stopping frequently it will take that little bit longer to get there, it is essential.

Stopping and getting out of the car restores concentration and allows everyone to stretch their legs.  Encourage youngsters to use the loo to avoid having to stop too soon again, or having to clean and dry a little ‘slip-up’.  (That’s the reason for the extra set of clothing).

TIME FOR ‘EYE SPY WITH MY LITTLE EYE’!

Its that time of the year when roads become unavoidably congested.  There is no point in becoming impatient, as the flow of traffic is certainly something beyond your control, regardless of the impatient drivers you are bound to encounter.

Prepare your younger passengers and maybe even your partner, that there will be traffic, delays will happen and the best and safest way of handling them is to wait your turn.

Use the time for a family sing-along or a game of ‘eye spy with my little eye’!

EASIER SAID THAN DONE BUT TOTALLY POSSIBLE

Road trips with kids can often be very stressful.  It really is worth planning a stop-over for long-distance journeys.  There is nothing more distracting than tired, bored kids screaming at the back of the car.

Plan the stop-over as part of the journey.  Make it fun and the next morning you will once again be on your way, only now with a happy, content family and the prospects of a well-deserved restful holiday ahead.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM ALL AT MOMMY WELLNESS

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Pajama Drill Anyone? The Cool Dad

PAJAMA DRILL ANYONE? THE COOL DAD

Mommy Wellness shares a few of the ups and downs of modern Fatherhood

It’s almost a total change of identity.  In fact, it IS a change of identity because you are no longer who you have always been. Be it just that ordinary guy down the road, the cool dude at the gym, or Johnny Dazzle himself, YOU ARE NOW OR ABOUT TO BECOME A DAD!

Strange how the excitement about the paternity side of things usually dwindles rather quickly after the birth, as though nothing out of the ordinary has happened, and somehow it seems that you are expected to return to normal almost immediately.

ACTUALLY, WHAT’S NORMAL ANYWAY?

The keyword here is ‘normal’.  What is normal for the modern Dad and what is expected from him in this ever-changing, developing world of ours?

The whole scenario can be quite contradictory between family and society, especially at the workplace.  People seem surprised when a Dad becomes the No. 1 caregiver, and even hand out praise for doing what they should be doing as Fathers, yet Moms thanklessly carry on regardless, with the list of never-ending, exhausting tasks.

Similarly, to the way in which women eventually started expecting and demanding recognition of their presence in the workplace, men need to start doing the same and start negotiating the hurdles which sometimes seem to prevent them from committing to fatherhood and active participation in this new phase of life.

WHO IS SOCIETY TO DICTATE?

Cultural and societal expectations are truly a thing of the past in modern-day living, especially around the fact that it is taken for granted that those mothers are expected to be the primary caregivers.

It is quite interesting that opinions about caregiving, household chores, and other associated parenting responsibilities start in childhood. It is basically expected by society that the female of the human species should undertake these specific roles.  At last, it seems that our new generation of Dads are resisting these so-called ‘norms’ but due to ingrained childhood teachings, the transition has been rather slow.

MOMMY WELLNESS PLAYS INSPECTOR CLUESO

Mommy Wellness has also identified what could also be a cause of a Dad’s reluctance to interact in situations when required to do so with his partner, as an expectant couple.  Occasionally they feel almost ignored and even unwelcome during prenatal care.

Sometimes, they may even feel this way during birthing classes.  This is often due to sensitive emotions being experienced at the time.  It is understandable that much focus is placed on the safety of the mother and child.  However, engaging fathers are associated with enhanced maternal health and the well-being of the child.

So, in short, men are just as capable as women when it comes to childcare.

No, you cannot breastfeed, and you may not be as eager to jump up in the middle of the night to change a soiled, smelly nappy.  But hey, this is your kid and there is nothing more rewarding than watching the progress of this human being and playing an integral role in the development of a brand-new life.  Sleep on the side of the bed closest to where the baby sleeps.  That way you will be more like to wake up easier and can at least help make your partner comfy at least when the 02:00 feed comes around!

GET DOWN AND DIRTY AS SOON AS YOU CAN

The best way to overcome any uncertainty or awkwardness about being a new dad is to immediately be ‘hands-on’. Spend as much time as you can with baby, and you will be amazed at how quickly you will bond with your new addition and how your confidence will improve. The more time you spend together, the more time you will want to spend together.

YOUR RELATIONSHIP NEEDS ATTENTION

Don’t lose sight of your partner in all the hype and excitement.  Keep the things you both enjoy close at heart, as sometimes your respective energies sometimes suddenly and without notice, take on new directions.  Remember to hug and connect with her every day after baby falls asleep. This small act of concern and comfort goes a long way!

DON’T FORGET YOU BOTH NEED TIME OUT TOO!

The same way as you take the time to spend with your family, so you need to spend time with your friends and continue pursuing your hobbies.  You probably will never again have the same amount of free time, but it is important for the sake of sanity!

Don’t forget that your partner needs the same peace of mind, so offer to take over the baby chores for an hour or two whilst she has a cup of coffee with a friend, or why not simply treat her to our amazing Mommy Wellness ‘Time Out’ spa package?  Nothing beats a full body massage to soothe away all the aches and pains, followed by a cup of tea/coffee and a bit of time to read her favourite magazine.

We haven’t forgotten the ‘new’ Dad and offer a range of pampering treatments ‘For Him’ from which to choose.

You both deserve a good spoil at this stage, so give us a call and book your appointments.

IT’S A LIFE-CHANGING EXPERIENCE

Yes you will be tired, yes you will think of your single days without the responsibility of nurturing and raising a little human but believe it, there is no better feeling than being handed that new-born bundle, knowing it’s all yours and building a lifetime of love and fatherhood.

For more information, please visit us at www.mommwellness.co.za

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Baby Massages

IT'S ALL IN THE TOUCH!

MOMMY WELLNESS JUST LOVES BABY MASSAGE

Gentle rhythmic stroking of baby’s soft body using special oils or moisturisers, helps hands glide smoothly over baby’s skin.

A special time indeed for bonding, whilst gently rubbing those tiny ankles, wrists, tummies, backs and fingers.  And a great time too, for exercising a soothing voice, whilst humming your favourite lullabies or softly talking to your new baby.

Before baby learns to speak, their only communication with the outside world is through touch.  It is instinctive for Moms to try and soothe their baby when they cry and the first reaction that we usually experience, is to pick them up to cuddle them.  Impulsively and often without even realising, we rub their backs.

Baby massage is therefore a natural extension to our Motherly instincts and MOMMY WELLNESS has perfected its art and offering to share our expertise.

MOMMY WELLNESS understands the level of anxiousness that Moms experience when arriving home with your new little bundle.

Whether a first, second or fifth baby, they are all such different little humans and they all require some ‘getting to know you time’.

WHAT ARE SOME OF THE BENEFITS?

We emphasise the word ‘SOME’ in the heading, as it is near impossible to list every benefit.

  • CONFIDENCE BOOSTER
    Every bit of confidence helps when handling your baby and results in being able to recognise its needs.Those early months are tough and quiet massage time will provide the space you need to learn more about your baby.Being more confident will help you and baby to relax too!
  • AFFORDS BONDING TIME
    Spending one-on-one time with baby and enjoying eye contact helps tremendously when getting to know your new human.
  • IT’S HEALTHY!
    Amongst other things, Baby massage promotes better breathing and improves blood and lymph circulation.
  • AND ITS CALMING
    Excellent for colic and sleep, massage is also calming on the nervous system and even releases oxytocin, that ‘feel good’ hormone, which helps you both to relax.
  • PROMOTES RELAXATION
    Massage helps with the relaxation of baby’s muscles, deeper breathing and at the same time, massage oils nourish the skin.
  • PROVIDES RELIEF
    A light and gentle massage can help relieve constipation, wind and ease colic.

We haven’t even touched on digestion, teething relief or weight-gain, which is especially good for prems.

WE ALSO HAVEN’T FORGOTTEN DAD!

Working Dads often miss out when it comes to hands-on care with their new babies, especially if Mom is breast-feeding.

Although this may prove somewhat difficult in the early days, try eventually to schedule a regular massage time for Dad and baby which will eventually become routine, helping them both with bonding time. (Maybe at bedtime)?  It is quite amazing how this special quiet time can help ease your partner’s stress levels too.

After a long hard day at work, you will be surprised how a Baby massage will help lift your moods and offer a sense of being more empowered as parents.

IS IT SAFE FOR ALL BABIES TO HAVE A BABY MASSAGE?

Knowing your baby will help you decide whether you suspect any possible underlying health issues. As a precaution, please speak to your Doctor before booking a baby massage with us.

THE NEXT STEP – WE WILL TEACH YOU HOW!

MAKE AN APPOINTMENT WITH MOMMY WELLNESS

Once you are comfortable about going ahead with a massage for baby, please give your closest Mommy Wellness branch a call and make an appointment for baby’s first massage.

We offer comprehensive DIY Baby Massage courses for Moms and Dads and we will teach you HOW TO MASSAGE your baby over a period of five weeks.  Alternatively, we will schedule five massage sessions and massage your little one for you, concentrating on specific needs as identified by you.

http://mommywellness.co.za/babe-tot-tween-wellness/

Touch is the first sense out of five that is most developed at birth, and research suggests that Baby Massage is enormously beneficial when it comes to helping babies grow and thrive.

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