Not all women instantly enjoy being pregnant, some need additional motivation.
There’s little doubt that being pregnant is one of the most profound experiences of a person’s life, but it’s not as if it’s always a stroll in the park. Indeed, sometimes women begin to feel sick of carrying a child, and look forward to it being over. Since wishing for it to be over won’t make time speed up, it’s best to find ways to enjoy being pregnant. But good news: this isn’t so difficult!
Below, we take a look at a few tried and tested methods for getting the most out of your pregnant period.
Embrace the Status
Don’t forget – pregnant women have a special status in society, so make the most of it. You’re unlikely to get so many strangers offering to do things for you on a regular basis, so why not relish the status and let them do it for you during pregnancy? There’s going to be plenty for you to do when you’ve had your child; for now, enjoy being treated as a queen. This is also a chance for you to indulge yourself. If you want to spend 10 hours lying on the couch, then go ahead – you’ve got a free pass to rest as much as you want.
Handle the Problems
One of the downsides of being pregnant is that things can become a little uncomfortable from time to time. And that’s not surprising, since you’re putting your body through a pretty intense experience. So it’s important that you have the right set up at home, so you’re able to handle the problems that pregnancy may throw your way. Create comfortable seating and sleeping areas, stock up on stool softener and indigestion relief medicines, and be mindful of your mental health. The more problems you’re able to quickly handle, the more you’ll be able to enjoy being pregnant.
Share Your Joy With Friends and Family
One of the best things about being pregnant is that you’ll have so many people who are happy for you. So embrace the happiness of others, and have some fun. There’ll be times for celebrations with your friends and family, and special weekends away with your loved ones. Essentially, pregnancy should be fun — it is, after all, a wonderful experience that you’re going through. So if you have opportunities to get together or you have people who want to get involved and make a fuss over you, take it.
Look to the Future
Pregnancy can feel like a whole new world, but really, it’s just the beginning of a long journey. In order to enjoy being pregnant, remember that this phase only last 9 months and then you have en entire lifetime that follows. So while you’re pregnant, take some time to think about all that you’ve done so far and where you’re going in the future. It’s a time to reflect on all areas of your life, and be blessed for all that you have.
It’ll Only Happen Once
Finally, keep in mind that this pregnancy is only going to happen once. Even if you end up having more children, every pregnancy is unique! Be present, and aware of all that’s going on. Schedule a maternity photo session to help you remember your changing body. It’ll allow you to see just how wondrous and magical a pregnancy can be.
When it comes to winter fashion, expectant moms often struggle. Any mother can tell you that, while pregnant, there’s a whole separate set of fashion challenges to face. Simply put, your body is changing, and this can leave even the most confident of fashionistas uncertain about how to dress. This is especially true during the winter, when it can seem that all maternity clothing consists of bulky outerwear and unflattering sweaters, without too many stylish options mixed in.
Thankfully, there are so many comfortable pieces that can be found outside of the maternity section that will keep you stylish and warm, and fit just fine.
So here are five chic, cozy winter fashion staples for moms-to-be!
A figure-hugging turtleneck dress is a great way to show off your adorable baby bump without really feeling confined or compressed. There are actually a lot of good options for this kind of garment making the rounds this winter season, though we’d have to say Elizabeth and James’ latest turtleneck dress is a particularly festive choice. The Clementine Space-Dye Wool Turtleneck Dress from the brand looks like something straight out of a 1970s fashion magazine – which, with vintage looks trendier than ever, is always a major bonus!
Fleece Lined Footless Tights
Even when you aren’t pregnant, fleece lined footless tights can be life savers when temperatures drop. They’re also quite handy, given that they’re fairly versatile and can be dressed up or down depending on the occasion. For instance, some of these tights paired with a jersey top and tennis shoes is an adorable look when you have to head out on some holiday errands – but you’d also look incredible rocking the tights with a sequined silver sweater and a pair of chunky black boots at your next festive get-together. The main draw of these pieces for expecting mothers specifically, though, is that they’re super stretchy, meaning they can adjust and last through the duration of your pregnancy.
Wool-Blend Long Plaid Coat
A plaid wool coat is arguably one of the classiest types of winter fashion outerwear you can buy. Typically though, some pregnant women may feel that wool coats can be too restrictive (especially during the last trimester). A long, more relaxed version of the coat, however, can be just the thing. The brand Woman Within presents a number of coats and jackets suitable for all sizes, and happens to have a Wool-Blend Long Plaid Coat that perfectly combines the chic quality of the garment with the inclusive fit so many moms-to-be will appreciate. Its flattering cut will suit any body type, and it can even be worn open if it’s not too cold outside.
A good pair of blue jeans is always a winter fashion essential (if not a year-’round one) but wearing denim can be somewhat tricky during pregnancy. It’s not the most forgiving fabric, particularly with a new pair, and so it can be difficult to find a pair of jeans that is both comfortable and fashionable. But this is where boyfriend jeans come in. These jeans – which tend to have a far more generous cut and relaxed design – happen to be very much “on trend,” and will look great with other seasonal staples, such as a black thermal top and a cozy cardigan.
Lastly, if you’re in a bind and can’t figure out to what to wear for a holiday party while pregnant, we’d suggest an always-fun billowy jumpsuit. For this season, the stylish designer Halston has a gorgeous option with a relaxed fit that’s well worth looking at, either as a specific option or simply as inspiration. The Asymmetrical Wide Leg Jumpsuit is designed in ultra-chic fashion, but made such that it’s roomy enough to remain comfortable during your pregnancy. A piece like this in white, or perhaps a festive red, can actually be quite the statement at your next holiday party!
Being pregnant can make some women feel extra large and unattractive over the holidays. And no one wants to splurge on maternity wear they may only wear for a single season. These winter fashion tips can help you enjoy your pregnancy, and the holidays, even when it’s cold outside. And the best part is, they’ll likely be staples in your wardrobe for years to come!
Mobile ultrasounds are a great way to beat a case of anxiety for expectant mothers.
Many women choose to get non-diagnostic ultrasounds during their pregnancy, where they can view their baby in the womb in 2D, 3D and 4D (video). But thanks to modern technology, a mobile ultrasound is the newest option for expectant moms to view their babies in-utero from the comfort of their own homes. This helps moms feel more relaxed and at ease during the process.
With Jess expecting her third baby in February, we thought it would be a great opportunity to test out the mobile ultrasound process for ourselves. So we collaborated with Prenatal Peek, Winnipeg’s ONLY mobile ultrasound company, and the first mobile ultrasound company in Canada.
Check out some of these awesome features of mobile ultrasounds that can help put anxious moms at ease.
Jess elected to have a mobile ultrasound from Prenatal Peek at her home, surrounded by her husband and two girls. At the time, she was 24 weeks pregnant and they had been told the gender of the baby over the phone by their doctor but wanted to confirm it. Jess had non-diagnostic ultrasounds with her two prior pregnancies, each at different locations in Winnipeg. This was her first mobile ultrasound experience.
One of the best things about Prenatal Peek‘s mobile ultrasound process is the service. Owner, Tracy, has been doing mobile ultrasounds for nearly 7 years and as a mother herself, she knows exactly how to make moms feel comfortable and at ease. She has seen hundreds of babies via ultrasound, but when it was finally time to see Jess’s baby on the screen, she was just as excited as if it was the first time.
An amazing benefit of the mobile ultrasound process is the flexible scheduling. Unlike most elective ultrasound locations, there wasn’t a long wait to get an appointment. Tracy fit us in on a Saturday afternoon and often works evenings and weekends because she understands what it’s like to be a busy, working parent. We even had to make a few last minute changes to our appointment time, which she easily accommodated.
Atmosphere + Environment
One of the biggest factors for an anxious mom-to-be when it comes to an ultrasound is the atmosphere and environment. For moms who have suffered a pregnancy or infant loss or who have anxiety about hospitals, ultrasounds can make for an unpleasant experience. This includes siblings and fathers-to-be who might also have a fear of hospitals due to a past trauma. The option of having the ultrasound done in your own home is a great alternative.
It took almost no time for Tracy to get her equipment set up in Jess’s living room. In fact, I was surprised at how little equipment was actually needed for the process. With just a few cables, Tracy was able to link her screen onto the television, making it possible for everyone to view baby.
A Family Affair
With the ability to project the screen, a mobile ultrasound would make a fantastic option for a gender reveal party, a baby shower or to include grandparents and other extended family members. Or, as Jess and her family chose to do it, a private and intimate family affair. However you decide to host your mobile ultrasound, Prenatal Peek can usually accommodate. But keep in mind that moms should be relaxed and comfortable in order to get baby to cooperate.
Great for Siblings
Many children can have a fear of doctor’s offices, hospitals or new places and strangers. This can make taking siblings along to an ultrasound quite difficult. But Tracy did a great job of including Jess’s two daughters during the mobile ultrasound process. The girls felt at ease in their own home and were excited to see the new baby on the television screen. They each got their own stuffed animal that had a recording of the baby’s heartbeat and it was clearly their favorite part!
One of the most special moments during the mobile ultrasound was when Tracy handed over the controls. Jess, her husband and her children each took a turn performing the ultrasound themselves. This was a great way for them to connect with the baby. And I’m certain it made dad and big sisters feel more involved in the pregnancy. This unique experience really made mobile ultrasounds stand out among standard ones.
In the end, we think that the personalized one-on-one service, convenience and comfort make mobile ultrasounds the way to go for moms to be and their families. It’s a great option for moms suffering from prenatal anxiety or depression as they get all the benefits of seeing baby without the hassle normally associated with elective ultrasounds. With the variety of different packages available, Prenatal Peek mobile ultrasound is totally affordable and you get to keep the images and video of your ultrasound for no additional cost, regardless of which package you choose!
Let’s be honest, when it’s your first pregnancy, you are showered with gifts and attention and the spotlight is always on you.
Your partner, your family and friends constantly check on you and ask you how you are feeling, if there is anything you need or want. You feel like royalty and I loved every second of it.
But by your second, or third/fourth/fifth pregnancy, you have found yourself lost in the background in the story of your ever growing family. Ironically, by this time you are so exhausted from looking after your current little humans, that the body growing your newest addition needs more love and attention than ever before!
With the holidays fast approaching, if you are stumped on what to get that pregnant not first time mom-to-be in your life, here are a few ideas.
A Prenatal Massage
Whether it’s the first or the fifth pregnancy, a mom-to-be is sore all over. Her back aches, her neck hurts, she always has some strange shooting pain in some part of her body. A prenatal massage specializes on a growing mama’s needs. Although there is a very good chance she’s gonna snooze on that massage table, because… motherhood.
By the middle of the second trimester, and for sure by the third, we can barely bend over to put on our shoes, never mind paint our toenails. Plus, for a NOT first time mom-to-be, there’s the added problem of having other children with their own busy schedules. So we can hardly remember the last time we did something just for ourselves. Sending a pregnant mom for a pedicure is one of the best gifts you can give her (and I love going just to sit in those massage chairs!)
A Back or Foot Massager
Speaking of those massage chairs at the nail salon, how about one that we can use in the comfort of our own homes? Being able to sneak in a massage while watching our other children play is multi-tasking done right! This is a gift that will definitely keep on giving because we’ll also be able to use it postpartum, including while breastfeeding or as part of our regular self care routine. In fact, the luxury of being able to enjoy a massage while binge watching Grey’s Anatomy after the kids going to bed sounds heavenly!
I had one when I was pregnant with my first baby. I lived in it postpartum, those middle of the night feedings and sitting in a rocking chair all night. But that was 6 years ago. It’s worn out and I’ll admit, a little on the small side now… (it MUST have shrunk in the dryer). But a brand new comfy robe would be the perfect gift for a NOT first time mom-to-be. Make sure that it has some good pockets because we carry ALL the things: washcloths, pacifiers, baby monitor, phone. Bonus points for some new house shoes to go with it!
A Subscription Box
A box full of goodies showing up her doorstep each month is enough to make a NOT first time mom-to-be tear up (not that it takes much). If you want her to feel special and remembered this is one of the nicest gift options. And where else would you go than Bump Boxes? They are specifically designed for the pregnant mama and contain high quality products that she’s probably never tried before but will be super excited to.
A 3D/4D Non-Diagnostic Ultrasound
There are several companies that offer non-diagnostic ultrasounds for expectant mothers nowadays. This is a great way for moms to get a look at their babies before they are born and have a keepsake of their pregnancies. It’s also a great gift for the entire family, including older siblings, and helps them feel more involved in the pregnancy. There are even mobile ultrasound companies that will perform the sessions in your own home! But they can be costly and are often neglected by moms in subsequent pregnancies. A gift certificate for one of these sessions would make an awesome gift.
Hair Salon Gift Certificates
We want to get our hair done. We want to get it colored and cut and styled. We really do. But sometimes our kids’ ballet lessons are more important, or the van needs an oil change. So the money that we want to spend on ourselves needs to go somewhere else. We say we’ll do it “one day” and we throw our hair into a mom bun and move on. A gift certificate to her hair salon is the the gift of guilt free beautiful hair. That postpartum hair loss is about to do a number on her, so she might even want to use it after the baby arrives to help give her the much needed cool mom pick me up!
This is not to use on her family when she doesn’t want to cook (although it could be!) No, these are for her to splurge on that order of chicken wings, mozzarella sticks and deep fried pickles after the kids are in bed and some strange craving hits her. One of the most thoughtful gifts I remember is our neighbors giving us a gift card for pizza place when our 2nd daughter came home. We were so grateful for such a small thing on those first few days of complete exhaustion.
A Self-Care Basket
Finally… give her all the self care products you can find! Face masks, moisturizers, lip balm, makeup, skin care, exfoliating scrubs, bath bombs, essential oils, deep conditioner, you name it! A NOT first time mom-to-be is even more guilty of neglecting self care throughout her pregnancy and afterwards so she needs as much encouragement as possible. Chances are, if she has the products in her home already, she’s more likely to make time to use them. This time of the year you can find self care products everywhere – or do your one stop shopping online at stores like Rocky Mountain Oils, Aveda or Well.ca.
Hopefully some of these ideas inspire you when it comes to treating that expecting mom in your life. You also don’t have to wait until Christmas morning, a just because gift can be the best ones! We get so used to taking care of other people that it is nice to be remembered. Happy Gifting!
So far, I have spent almost 2 years of my life being pregnant.
I am now 22 weeks pregnant with my third baby. Just over halfway there! As a family we have decided that this will be our last baby, and with that comes a roller coaster of emotions. When I was pregnant with my second daughter, I knew we had planned for 3 kids in total, so I feel as though I did not appreciate every moment of that pregnancy.
But there’s something different about the last pregnancy:
This will be the last time I will feel those flutters and kicks, so I am trying to stop and really feel every movement.
This will be the last time I grow a life inside of me.
The last time I will wash newborn clothes and prepare a nursery.
The last time I will choose a name for a new person.
I thought maybe I would feel sad about it, but to be honest, I am feeling very at peace about the whole experience. In a way, I feel like this little bonus baby is a gift for my two girls. Both my daughters, who will be 6 & 3 when baby arrives, are beyond excited about the arrival of their new sibling. I think their excitement elevates my own. In a way I think it’s so special that I am growing this little gift for them, who they lovingly refer to as theirbaby.
With my first pregnancy, I was so anxious about everything.
I had no idea what to expect. I was your typical first time mom, I read everything, I googled and researched and went to birthing classes. I bought everything brand new, planned fashionable outfits and decorated a beautiful nursery with matching bedding. We spent hours looking for the right stroller and car seat. I thought all the right “things” would be so important. Looking back now, I laugh at myself for putting so much effort into the things that didn’t matter as much.
With my second pregnancy, I worried about the adjustment to having two kids.
I worried about my oldest daughter feeling replaced. I worried about how to care for two lives. I worried about how to love them equally. I worried about the logistics and how to manage being out in public with two kids. I worried about how I would split my time and attention. I worried so much, I couldn’t sleep. And when she finally arrived, life worked itself out, just like everyone had assured me it would. Her older sister was in love with her, and I learned just what exponential love really was. Just like that, our love had doubled.
Now with my third, I am excited.
I know that this baby will add another level of love. I have heard from other moms of three (or more) that a second baby is a harder adjustment than a third and I believe it. I am already so busy and I am already used to juggling schedules and attention. After the initial first trimester where I was a pukey nauseous disaster, I am in that second trimester sweet spot. I am still getting sleep, I can eat anything I want and I can walk without waddling. I know that will all end very soon, but for right now, I am enjoying this stage. And while I am SO excited to meet this baby, I am in no hurry. I am savoring every last minute of this pregnancy… the stretchy maternity pants and all!
So while the thought of this being my last pregnancy does feel like the end of an era, it also feels right for me and my family. I will try my best to keep you updated on this journey with my growing family. I appreciate the outpouring of love I have received as I start my own adventure Running in Triangles.
Ever considered using a doula to help you through labor and delivery?
There are so many benefits of doulas, and it’s not just for moral support. Science has proven that having the support of a doula through labor, delivery and in the postpartum period can lead to better health for mom and baby. For most women, the process of giving birth can be extremely frightening and stressful and a doula can ease some of that stress. Having someone in your corner that will put your needs first is something all moms can benefit from.
Let’s be truthful here, giving birth is no easy task. It’s called labor for a reason. First-time mothers experience it on even another level due to the fear of the unknown. To the dismay of many moms-to-be, the medical community took a natural process and made it into a sterile procedure to be feared. The birthing mom was isolated in a stark, cold room to give birth in an unnatural position, separated from loved ones, and without support. Fortunately, the medical community has finally begun to come around to what works for a new mom and her baby.
The scientific community began to realize that perhaps the ways of modern medicine did not work well for the most natural process on our planet, and that is giving birth. After many compelling studies, scientists discovered that stress-free labor had many benefits to both the mother and infant. They found thatdoulas played a significant role in providing a stress-free environment, aiding in an uncomplicated birth.
Mothers who received doula support during labor and the birthing process experienced less pain as well as a shorter labor duration. This was a result of the confidence they felt in their abilities, knowing that they had the full emotional and physical support of a doula by their side. In addition to this, they also had fewer incidents of cesareans, epidurals, and the use of invasive birthing instruments.
A mother who experiences stress-free labor without invasive intervention due to the support of a doula will also have a stronger bonding connection with her newborn. Both mother and child come together in the world for the first time in a positive atmosphere. Studies have not only shown that this type of birth increases positive mother-infant interaction but also boosts early breastfeeding scores.
Scientific studies have forced the medical community to realize that there are so many benefits of doulas for a laboring mother that it can no longer be ignored.
Here are 17 evidence-based benefits, including infants with higher Apgar scores, reduced postpartum depression, and fewer birth complications.
Neve is a pragmatic and encouraging natural birth advocate. She loves science and hates dogma, and she tries hard to empower women with information while steering clear of criticism and judgment. A mother of three, Neve is also chief researcher and editor at WeTheParents. You can catch her on Twitter and Facebook.
While it’s great that science is able to prove the benefits of doulas, it’s also just plain common sense. Even if you have a supportive spouse or friend with you, it doesn’t often compare to the experience of a trained doula. Having someone who is completely devoted to your care and well being during one of the most intense moments of your life is a luxury that all mothers should have access to.
Have you used a doula for your labor and delivery? We’d love to hear more about your experience. Feel free to contact us or leave a comment!
Finding out that you’re pregnant is an incredibly exciting, but also terrifying moment, especially if it’s the first time. Your initial reaction is going to be one of joy, but then you’re going to start thinking about all of the things that you need to sort out before the baby arrives and all of the difficult pregnancy stuff that you have to deal with. It’s easy to start panicking here but that’s the worst thing that you can do.
There are some important things that you need to sort in the first few weeks and months of the pregnancy and the sooner you get it done, the sooner you can start preparing yourself. As soon as you find out that you are expecting, subscribe for monthly Bump Boxes to make your pregnancy go smoothly.
These are the things that you should do when you find out that you’re pregnant.
Calculate Your Due Date
The first thing that you need to know is when the baby is going to arrive, so you need to calculate your due date. You can use this calculator to work out roughly when your baby is due. The reading from the calculator isn’t going to be completely accurate but it will give you a rough idea of when the baby is likely to arrive, so you know how long you have to sort everything out. When you go in for a scan, you’ll get a more accurate due date, but this initial estimate is useful to have right away.
Next, you need to get in touch with your doctor and let them know that you are pregnant. They will set up a booking appointment which usually happens around 8 to 10 weeks into your pregnancy. They may want to see you right away but it differs depending on the doctor and your medical history, but they will tell you when you need to see them.
Consider Legal Issues
This isn’t something that people think about as much but when you have a baby on the way, there are certain legal issues to deal with, so it’s a good idea to hire a family lawyer right away. You will need to update your will to include your new baby and some couples like to put a parenting agreement in place to decide what happens should the relationship break down. It’s not a nice thought but you have to put the needs of your child first, so it’s worth considering.
Tell Family And Friends
Lastly, it’s time to tell your family and friends the good news. A lot of people prefer to wait until around 10 or 12 weeks because the chance of miscarriage drops drastically after that. This is one of the most exciting parts about the early pregnancy stages because you get to share your amazing news with those closest to you and they can get started with planning the baby shower. If you’re going to put an announcement on social media, make sure that you tell family and close friends in person beforehand, otherwise, they might feel that they were missed out.
You’ve got a long road ahead of you and there are so many other things to arrange, but these are some of the first things that you need to do when you first find out that you are pregnant. Once these things are taken care of, you can focus on some of the more fun stuff, like designing the nursery, and choosing baby clothes and equipment. Most importantly, educate yourself on what to expect after baby arrives, especially on maintaining your own mental health.
P.S. Thinking about the baby shower?
A baby is always a reason to celebrate and a fun time to gather all your loved ones together to take part in welcoming your bundle of joy. But, between baby shower invites, food, decor, gifts and preparing all the final details for your baby shower, you may be forgetting the most important part, baby shower games.
Keeping the guests entertained is not always an easy task, especially if they don’t all know each other. That’s why games are just the perfect ice breakers. To make life a little easier, feel free to assign the task to someone who will take care of handing out printables, reading the rules to your guests and choosing the prizes for the winners.
This list has plenty of games to enjoy: Baby’s First Book, Baby Bingo, Mommy Trivia, Nursery Rhyme lyrics and 20 additional family-friendly games for everyone. Keeping the party filled with joy and laughter is the perfect beginning to a baby’s life. Download some of these free printable games for your baby shower!
Practicing self care during pregnancy can benefit moms as well as their growing babies.
Expectant mothers have a lot on their minds, in addition to making it through the discomforts and excitement of pregnancy. These pregnancy self care tips are something all moms can try in order to ease symptoms of prenatal depression, anxiety, stress and to ensure a healthy 9 months for both mom and baby.
Pregnancy is a time of massive change in a woman’s life, and becoming a mom brings the most significant life transformation ever. Society tells us that pregnancy is a magical time, and while this is true, it is also a time of many other emotions too.
Many women can feel overwhelmed by the prospect of their impending arrival and may feel anxious about what they will experience as life as a parent. With such a life-changing moment just around the corner, it can help to put some self-care habits into place to help you feel as prepared as possible for your new baby’s arrival, and to make the rest of your pregnancy as relaxed as it can be. As soon as you find out that you are expecting, subscribe for monthly Bump Boxes to make your pregnancy go smoothly.
Eating a healthy, balanced diet is of course always important, but doing so in pregnancy can feel like a challenge if you are suffering from morning sickness, or worse still, hyperemesis gravidarum. Trying to eat a diet which is as healthy as it can be is not only a great way to keep yourself feeling good but could also keep your baby healthier in the future too.
According to the Early Life Nutrition Coalition, the First 1000 Days are a crucial time, where your diet can impact on the chances of your child becoming obese in the future, and can also affect them having allergies.
What you eat at the preconception stage and throughout pregnancy is worth considering carefully to get your child off to the best start in life.
Mindfulness is a powerful tool to use in life in general but can come in especially handy during pregnancy and your life as a parent. Mindfulness is all about bringing your attention to the present moment and letting your thoughts come and go. With regular practice, mindfulness becomes second nature for use at times of anxiety and stress.
Keeping calm, and practicing mindfulness should help you from worrying about future scenarios, and past events, enabling you to focus on the here and now, and yourself and your baby.
During pregnancy, you will probably need to change your existing exercise routine if it could be unsafe to follow during your pregnancy. Although you may have to put your usual routine on hold for a little while, you can try out some completely different activities instead, which will provide you with some gentle exercise.
Pregnancy yoga is a popular choice of exercise, which is no surprise as it offers many reputed benefits. Pregnancy yoga enables you to focus on your growing baby without all the interruptions of everyday life to disturb you. Your yoga session should fit well with your mindfulness practice, meaning that you can relax and exercise all at the same time, which should leave you feeling much calmer after the session. Joining a pregnancy yoga class is also great for making friends with other local expectant moms, and if you keep in touch, your baby will have a ready-made friendship group as soon as they are born!
All women experience pregnancy differently but one thing remains the same. It’s a time to prepare for the changes ahead. Once baby arrives, life will become significantly different. Taking the time to focus on yourself now, means that baby will also benefit from your peaceful state. Using some of these pregnancy self care tips will give you a head start for maintaining your self care routine once you’re juggling the demands of a newborn baby.
Nine months of pregnancy goes by faster than we think.
These maternity photo shoot ideas submitted by Madison fromMILK Booksare a great way to help document your pregnancy. Whether you had a glowing nine months or were burdened with complications, the miracle of birth will always be beautiful.
In the early postpartum days while you’re battling the baby blues, you can look back at the incredible feat you’ve accomplished and feel proud of yourself. And as your children grow older, they may be curious to see how your body changed while you carried them.
Check out these adorable and creative maternity photo shoot ideas for inspiration.
Pregnancy is probably one of the most beautiful chapters in a woman’s life. The nine months of struggles and excitement is surely a collection of memories worth documenting, hoping that you’ll forever encapsulate the story of carrying the greatest blessing of your life through photos.
To celebrate the beautiful changes in your life and body during the odyssey of your pregnancy, here are 20 adorable maternity photo shoot ideas you must try!
1. Take the ocean (or lake) as your aquatic backdrop
Seeing the waves of the ocean or the flow of clear river water brings us a tide of peace and good vibes. No explanation needed. So if you’re looking for a relaxed maternity shoot idea, and you have this undying love for the beauty of aquatic nature, grab your flowing dresses and flower crowns, head on the nearest beach, and get posin’ with a body of water in the background.
Or you could pose in a dock near you, stand in the center, and let the wind blow away your dress while looking at a distance. Plus aesthetic points if you’re shooting when the sun is setting down to its slumber! If you want to be a little more creative, you can dive and pose underwater, or jump into the water until your bump is submerged deep.
2. Bring out the best of your humorous and punny side
This maternity shoot idea is the perfect opportunity to show you and your husband’s funny side.
For instance, you can find a “Bump Ahead” sign on the streets, pose with your husband, and show off your belly, looking confused as to which bump the sign is referring to. You can make fun of your weird cravings by posing with your those strange food combinations you find satisfying. You can also huff and puff some balloons, with hands on your bump and gum on the mouth, and hold a chalkboard that says “About to pop!” Like this one:
3. Get your husband to pretend as the pregnant one
Ah, guys and other adorable beer bellies. If you’re feeling a bit camera shy, or if you want an extension of idea #2, this one’s a good and fun idea to do.
Have your husband pose as the pregnant one, expose his round belly, and let your camera lens capture his proud moment of being a dad and his drinking accomplishment.
Or you could hide in a tree or wall with your bump exposed halfway, and have your husband pretend it’s his baby bump. Take a look at how this couple did just that:
4. Include the whole family in the shot
Let your family show their excitement with the new addition in the gang! This maternity photo could double as a family portrait too. You and your family can do a simple pose in front of the camera, wearing your beautiful smiles and matching outfits.
The older sibling/s can also be the subject of the photo, holding a chalkboard with a sign saying “I’m going to be a big brother/sister!” or holding your bump while smiling at you or at the camera.
You can also ask the women in your family – mom, sister, grandma, your daughter – and do a timeline photo, showing the different generations of your family.
5. Soak in a milk bath
Add that pure and innocent aesthetic to your maternity photos by soaking into a tub full of flowing milk. Just fill your bathtub 1/4 all the way, add milk and corn starch (for that thick texture) and soak in with your all-white lace dress. If you’re feeling a little daring, go au naturel. To complete the look, sprinkle some petals from your favorite flowers in the tub. The colorful, the better!
6. Silhouette photos for that intimate tone
Silhouette photos are not that complicated to take. You and your husband can do this by yourselves! Just grab your DSLRs and tripod, or your smartphones with good cameras, and do your best pose in front of the windows at home.
If you want to achieve a darker silhouette, close the curtains and leave a little gap for the light to come through. Otherwise, open the curtains wide and let the sunshine flow through.
7. Embrace the beauty of nature
Are you living in an area with beautiful fields nearby? Or perhaps you and your husband are hardcore nature lovers who have visited different hiking trails, sanctuaries, and forests, and decided to take nature with your maternity photos?
In that case, get out there and find the best spots where you feel like one with nature. If you have a backyard with a few towering trees, lush greenery, and colorful flowers, you can do your photo shoot close to home! Or as mentioned, you can visit your favorite nature spot, a sanctuary for example, and pose and capture as many photos as you can.
8. Show the beauty of pregnancy with studio photos
Want to keep it simple and professional? Visit a photography studio near you and have your intimate black-and-white photos taken by a professional photographer. You can do simple poses with your husband here, like him hugging you and your baby bump, or an all-smile photo with both of you looking at the camera.
Or you can have a solo portrait-type photo where you’re clothed in a black dress that hugs your beautiful body and that precious bump. You can also pose with wearing only your underwear to showcase the natural, no-filter side of being a soon-to-be-mother.
9. Bring your pet friends along
Pets + babies = cuteness overload!
If you’re an animal lover, then it’s mandatory to include your fur babies or your favorite animals in your maternity photos. Play around with your pets and let your carefree side show naturally in the photo!
You can also have your dogs and/or cats play as the older siblings by dressing them up and have them carry a sign that says I’m waiting for my human brother/sister.
10. Make your hobbies as the focus theme
Got a passion for good melodies? Show them in your photos, with your beloved musical instruments as props. Are you a bookworm at heart? Pose with your favorite books. This is an easy photo idea to do, since you already have the props needed, and you can shoot whenever and wherever you like.
If your kid/s follow the same hobby in the future, you can bring out your photo books full of your maternity photos and share stories of how you pursue your passion.
11. Take the baby stuff out and use them as props
Have you shopped for the necessary items for your coming bundle of joy? Then you already have a perfect set of props to use for your maternity photos!
Borrow the new baby shoes for a while and use it as the main focus of your photos, with you and your husband sitting blurred in the background. Or get playful and have fun with the baby mobile.
12. Flaunt your sexy side
Don’t be afraid to flaunt your curves and show the world you’ve always had that alluring side to your personality.
Grab your sexy black dress and let it hug every inch of your curves in a high contrast photo! Or if you’re feeling a little bit daring, wear your sexiest underwear underneath a thin robe.
13. Channel your inner Audrey Hepburn and embrace your vintage soul
If you’re an old soul at heart with a thing for vintage fashion and throwback aesthetics, this your chance to channel your inner Audrey Hepburn. Bring out those vintage display items hanging out in your shelves and cupboards for your props, hang a vintage floral cloth, and voila – DIY vintage studio! You can also keep it simple and wear your cutesy vintage dresses with a flower in your ears and holding a balloon in the street.
14. Have fun with a season-themed photo shoot
One good thing about seasons – no matter the weather is, there’s always a location and mood perfect for your photo shoot. Take the summer season for example. You can catch the natural sunshine glow in your photos during this season, which strikes the ocean waves and beach glow better than the other seasons.
15. Bumps and sonograms
Sonogram maternity photos are the perfect way to announce that you’re expecting and the gender of your baby.
You can pose whichever way you want, whether solo or with your husband (or your older kids), but the general idea here is to hold the sonogram closer to the camera, with you in the background.
16. Turn your body into a canvas
Showcase your artistic side and use your body as a canvas for a beautiful painting. You can paint a nature-themed image in your baby bump, some cartoons for the childish vibes, a group of cute animals, or maybe a cartoon depiction of your coming baby.
17. A before-and-after photo
This one here is the perfect idea to showcase the joy of being a mother, the thrill of carrying your bundle of joy for nine months and the excitement of finally having your child in your arms.
You can do side view poses here, and during the editing process, you can simply set the before and after photos side by side. Some photographers offer this package, so be sure to ask your hired photographer if they do this kind of shoot.
18. Pretend you’re shooting for a movie poster
Show your love for movies in this maternity shoot idea! The idea is simple: you and your husband will copy your favorite movie’s poster.
To make it more creative, you can put the pun in and create a “pregnant” version of the poster.
Take these witty movie posters for inspiration:
19. Don’t forget the candids
Sometimes, the best maternity photos just come out naturally. Candid photos are great because they show the real struggles and beauty of pregnancy. Those stolen shots of your smiles while the baby takes his/her first kick, the constant checking in the mirror for your growing bump – you’re bound to produce an album of priceless maternity photos with just these ideas.
20. Go for the traditional look
Embrace the beauty of ethnic culture with ethnic-inspired outfits with popping colors, big hoop earrings, a turban-like headwrap, and some quirky bracelets. A beautiful landscape in the background would complete the breathtaking photos!
Madison is a content creator for MILK Books. If she’s not perusing pregnancy or maternal related blogs or writing for MILK, she spends her time making sure her 2 little “offsprings” don’t get into trouble.
New moms often find themselves in a vulnerable state – physically and emotionally.
Unfortunately, many people don’t see the vulnerability of a new mom’s spirit and inadvertently do things to harm it. Offering unsolicited advice, judging a new mom’s parenting choices, or making her feel incapable in any way can all do damage to a mother’s mental and emotional health.
Jess shares some of her experiences as a new mom, feeling judged and made to second guess her choices. She talks about how dangerous it can be to do anything but support a new mom. New moms don’t need us to tell them what to do, because we all figure it out eventually. What they do need is a community of people who they trust and can go to for advice when they need it.
So the next time you see a new mom struggling, don’t give her unsolicited advice.
It really isn’t that hard to not judge other moms. Whatever your excuse might be, it does not matter. Whether you are from the older generation where you did things differently, or maybe it’s because the way you opted to do things worked for you, you assume it’s the only way.
But when you give unsolicited advice to a new mom, the only thing that she will take away from your statement is that she is not doing a good job.
When I had my first child, I felt so prepared. I was ready. I read the books. I went to the classes. My husband and I had talked endlessly on how we wanted to raise our children. We talked about what was important to us, our family values and the importance we placed on everything from Montessori toys to how we felt about screen time. I knew we were in for a huge adventure as we became parents, and as scary as it was, I felt like “yes, I can do this!”
And then you came along. Someone who obviously knew more than either my husband or I when it came to raising our own child. Everything I did received criticism or was questioned. Maybe you felt entitled to say it because you are older than me, or you had raised a child of your own.
I honestly don’t know what triggered it, but I started to hate you. I had a newborn baby and I was exhausted. Sure, I didn’t know what I was doing, but I 100% knew better than you did when it came to the well-being of MY baby.
This was not just one person, it was several people. Maybe I was just overly sensitive, but you don’t know how the words you said to me affected me. I would cry in the car on the drive home because your unsolicited advice made me feel inadequate. I cringed at the thought of seeing you and even avoided gatherings that I knew you would be at.
That unhelpful, toxic energy was not good for my soul.
I was so new into motherhood and I was not prepared for the unsolicited advice that was being thrown at me left and right. I did not know then, as I do now, how much I would have to protect my spirit so I would not be broken.
Motherhood is heavy, oh so heavy, and the weight of it can crush you.
People feel as if they have the right to give you unsolicited advice because you NEED it. I was fortunate that I never went through the darkness of postpartum depression. But having someone question or belittle me when it came to making decisions about this perfect little human that I shared a bond with, was one of the most frustrating things I have experienced as a mother.
As a practice of self-care, I developed a circle of support. I now surround myself with people I love and trust and can turn to at any minute of the day when I need my spirits lifted. I could also feel my “motherly intuition” grow stronger as my baby grew. I knew when she was hungry or tired. I could sense her emotions and I grew confident in my abilities.
Now, fast forward five years down the road and another baby later, I do not let what other people say get to me when it comes to parenting. Yes, I let my kids watch YouTube Kids and occasionally have a lollipop with their breakfast. But I know I am a good mom to my kids and I have stopped comparing myself, or my kids, to anyone else.
So while the same people might still make the same sly comments every now and then and offer their unsolicited advice, I have learned to just smile, nod and hum Backstreet Boys songs in my head until they stop talking.
Here is my advice to all the new moms out there.
No one knows how to take care of your baby better than you. It will be hard to remember at first, but eventually you will find that mama bear spirit lying deep within.
And to all the well meaning people out there who have so many words of wisdom or “helpful” comments, here is some advice for you: unless you are directly asked for advice about something, all you need to say is… repeat after me…