Disclosure: Ergobaby provided free product for review. We also make a small commission when you purchase an Ergobaby product after clicking the referral links. However, all opinions stated here are my own.
Having a baby in any season presents some awesome benefits but also some challenges. Winter babies are born during the flu season. You also have to be vigilant to keep them warm. On the flip side, summer babies need to stay cool which can sometimes be a challenge on those hot summer days.
Both of my babies were summer babies and I learned a few things along the way. Here are my best tips for making the most out of those summer months with your new bundle of joy.
Tips for having a summer baby
1. Baby Might Be On And Off The Breast More
Newborns are nursing machines. If you are spending all of your time nursing (literally), then you are doing it right. Remember, breastmilk is both their water and their food. This means that in the summer time, baby is more likely to want to be on and off even more. They want to pop on for a sip of “water” so they can stay hydrated.
I nursed on demand because it allows baby to tell you when they are hungry or thirsty. Once baby shows hunger signs such as turning their head side to side, opening mouth, hand to mouth, or rooting, I nurse. If baby comes off the breast or falls off, I always try to re-latch them. If they don’t re-latch, I check for burps, and try again. If they don’t re-latch, then I offer the other side. If they still don’t re-latch and seem content (aren’t showing hunger signs), then I quit nursing until they show me that they are hungry.
Another thing to remember is that if they are too hot and a little lethargic, they might not be showing hunger signs, so be sure to offer a breast often to keep them well hydrated.
If you will be spending a lot of time outdoors, then you will want to make sure that your little one the breast often. Babies get dehydrated a lot faster than older kids and adults do, so be sure to keep a close eye on it. The best thing to do when you are out is to continue breast feeding every two hours. If your little one is not eating for the full-time, then during each feeding session, you may want to extend feeding to every hour or half hour or so.
2. Buy A Lot Less Baby Clothing
I know, newborn clothing is the cutest but honestly if you are going to have a summer baby, you don’t need a lot of clothing. Newborns (born in any season) also need their diaper changed A LOT. With the amount of diaper changes, you might find that it is easier to have baby in just their diaper.
I am also a huge fan of skin-to-skin and loved having my babies take naps on my chest. Another reason to go with just the diaper and less baby clothing is less laundry. My second baby spit up a lot and clean up was a lot easier if they were just in a diaper instead of a onesie.
Lastly, with all babies they grow way too fast. If you have a summer baby, especially one born at the start of summer, then they will be growing out of their clothes faster than they can keep them on. Instead of wasting money on adorable summer clothes that are likely not going to be worn, save your money instead for some fall and winter clothes. As your baby grows, they will not grow as quickly as they do during the newborn phase. This will allow them to stay in their clothing a little bit longer. With my little one, by six months, her growing had steadied out a bit and she was able to stay in her six month clothing well into her nine month.
3. Get a Breathable Lightweight Baby Carrier
I am a huge fan of baby wearing. My first was colic so I wore her practically all day for the first six months. The only problem was summer. Wearing her in the summer meant being super sweaty and uncomfortable. I would literally spend hours under the air conditioning with her in her wrap on me.
Additionally, the summer is a wonderful time to be outside and there is no better way to travel in the summer than by using a carrier. My favorite way to spend summer mornings is hiking or taking walks in the neighborhood with baby snuggled on my chest.
You want a carrier that is breathable, will last baby through toddlerhood, and can be worn by both dad and mom. The only one that I have found that meets these requirements is the Ergobaby Omni 360 Cool Air Mesh Carrier. I wore it in the summer with my baby and neither of us were sweaty. Plus, it is so easy to put on. You can do it yourself without help (which can’t be said for similar carriers).
Make sure that once your baby grows out of the carrier that you take good care of it and store it properly. Having the right carrier with your firstborn can be such a great money and timesaver because if you store it correctly you can use it time and time again with additional future babies. Unlike many other baby necessities like strollers and car seats that may need to be replaced due to safety precautions, having a lightweight and breathable baby carrier is not something that you will have to replace as often.
4. Invest In Muslin Blankets And A Good Picnic Blanket
Even though it’s summer, you will still want to use blankets to cover baby or to swaddle. You might also just use them as receiving blankets. In any case, make sure you prioritize the type of fabric. Muslin is the best since it is the most breathable.
With my little one, a muslin blanket was absolutely a game-changer. This was because there were so many ways I could use it. If it was way too hot outside when we were out exploring, a muslin blanket came in handy because it was a way for me to keep the sun off of my little one’s head and back. Better yet, I would sometimes take off her shirt so that her skin could get some fresh air all while staying protected thanks to the muslin blanket. When the evening started to set in and we were still outside, a muslin blanket was perfect for swaddling my little one in so that she could still get a rest restful nap without getting too cold or overheated.
Another thing I found to be well worth the cost was to buy a picnic blanket that has a waterproof backing. I would spend a lot of time with baby out in the yard in the shade. As your baby gets older, they will have a blast laying on their back watching the trees sway in the summer breeze.
5. Use a Net not a blanket to cover baby’s stroller/car seat
When baby is in either their carseat or their stroller, you want to ensure they don’t get too hot. Putting a blanket or any fabric over the carseat or stroller will trap in all the hot air and result in limited airflow. A lot of moms do this because they don’t want people to touch their babies.
One way around this is to buy a net and place that over the stroller or carseat. An advantage of the net is that it will also keep mosquitos out. You can buy nets that are specifically designed for this.
The mesh net that I bought my little one was such a great necessity that I used it almost every time we went outdoors. What I loved about the mesh net was that unlike traditional blankets, my baby was still able to see me even though she was covered. This gave her a sense of comfort that I was still around even when I was not holding her. Additionally, the mesh net was so easy to carry that I always had it ready and on hand with me. Storage was super simple because all I had to do was crumple it up and stuff it into a little baggie. If your family is the one that enjoys going outdoors, then investing in a high-quality net is an absolute game changer. You can find a mesh net in really any retailer both online and in store.
Enjoy the Summer and Your New Baby!
Personally, I think summer is the best time to welcome a new baby into your family, although of course I might be biased.
If you have a due date in the summer or late spring, be sure to prioritize the fact that it will be hot in all of your decisions, such as how much newborn clothing to buy, and what type of carrier to get. Also, a short but simple bonus tip, be sure to always keep baby protected from the sun. That beautiful baby skin is fragile.
Are you having a summer baby? What are you considering that I may have missed? Already have a summer baby, what is the best or worst part for you? Let me know in the comments.
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Trina Fitzgerald is a wife, mom, and blogger. She is the co-author of the Week-by-Week Bump Smart Course, the Nesting Planner and the Breastfeeding Handbook. She attributes her success at breastfeeding her own children with working with lactation consultants in the hospital in the early stages and on a weekly basis afterwards. By writing at MomSmartNotHard, she educates mamas-to-be on all things pregnancy, birth and breastfeeding. Read more about Trina.