Preparing Siblings for New Baby

Recently, I just received a great news from home. 
One of my dearest friends who used to be assigned here in NYC just deliver her baby. How excited! I remember all the feelings and the excitement when I have Bo et Obi. Not only the fun part, but also the challenging one, like dealing with sibling rivalry issues.


Welcoming baby Obi..back in 2010

Welcoming a new baby into the family is fun and exciting, but for the toddler who has been the center of your universe since taking his first breath, it gets a bit confusing. All of the sudden, people are talking to your stomach instead of talking to him/her when they visit.  They keep asking if he is going to be a big brother, but he/she has no idea what a big brother is, so how can he be one? People keep bringing toys and blankets, but he is not allowed to touch them. Something is definitely odd around here! 

I remember Bo, my son, when Obi was born. It was like a mixed feelings of excitement as well as uncertainty, if not confusion, as he welcomed his little sister.

About a month before (or a month after) the arrival of the new baby, consider celebrating with a “New Sibling Party”.  

Your little boy is the guest of honor. He is being celebrated as the big brother. (Our preference is a month after the birth so the toddler can introduce the family and friends to his new baby). The decorations can be recycled from your baby showers. Instead of finger sandwiches or cake, consider an easy to put together candy buffet. A candy buffet is easily made from containers or jars you have around the house, scoops, some colorful balloons, streamers, and some paper bags for the guests to take goodies home with them.  There is no mess or clean up.

Invitations
Be sure to specify what time the party begins and what time it ends. This will keep you from tiring out. Write on the invitations, “No gifts” because your guests will wonder.  It would be a bad thing if a guests showed up with a gift for the baby and nothing for the big brother, on his special day.

Theme
While the theme is baby related, make sure you point everything to your son, who is the guest of honor. Have a few games set up.  One is to set a jar filled with candy on the table with slips of paper and a basket next to it. Each guest writes his or her name on the paper and their guess of how much candy is in the jar. Winner get the candy when they leave. Set up some dolls and diapers and a timer. Have a baby changing contest. 

Candy
You will buy your candy in bulk. The best bulk candy supplier we have ever used is Sweet Services.  They are great for candy, containers, goody bags, and advice. You will need about eight ounces of candy per guest. Think kids.  Have Pacifier suckers, lollipops, M&M’s, Skittles, and foil wrapped candy (like coins). Sweet Services can tell you of any specials they have going or of any specialty candies that will go well with your theme.


sweet treats, anyone?
photo is taken from http://www.sweetservices.com/

Set up the candy table with a stool and a wide jar and scoop for the big brother to scoop. (a plastic shovel and bucket works great) Let big brother serve and talk to the guests as much as he wants.  Give him a disposable camera and tell him to mingle and take everyone’s picture. It will be great new experience for him as he started to take pictures and have fun with it. For sure, he will have some attentions he deserve

The main event
Have everyone gather and follow your son to the nursery to introduce the family to the new baby. If you want, you can put the baby in a stroller and have him (with your help) push the baby to them. Have him tell everyone her name and have him tell the baby who they are.  Your son will get a kick out of being the big brother and your family is off to a great start.

Note: It is natural for people to make ove the new baby. But mention to your close friends and family that you are concerned about your son. Ask them to be sure to speak to him before they start making over the infant. It is important that your son understands his place in the family unit is not threatened. Never let anyone tease him by saying things like “you will be traded in”.  Let your child feel special, because he is.  Let him develop a good relationship with his sibling, because one day he will need it. Your celebration means all of these things and more.


So hopefully this will help and your kids will have a great time welcoming their sibling.

Cheers,
Mama Bo et Obi


9 comments:

  1. What a great idea! I wish I knew about this when m babies were born. Having a new baby is stressful on the older children. Our family went through that experience 4 times.

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    1. You[re right, Cascia..it's quite tough in the beginning but there are ways to work it out :)

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  2. These are great ideas to help an older sibling get ready for new baby! I love the idea of a candy bar. So fun!

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  3. Selamat ya mba Indah, semoga anak dan ibunya sehat selalu

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  4. great tips for the mothers like us..

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  5. I always thought it would have been great had I had my kids in the opposite order. Isaak's a nurturer. Mica's very into himself. Switch them around, and I think things would be better. Ha! When I had Isaak, Mica wanted nothing to do with him. Now they play. Even that's a struggle at times.

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  6. I always thought it would have been great had I had my kids in the opposite order. Isaak's a nurturer. Mica's very into himself. Switch them around, and I think things would be better. Ha! When I had Isaak, Mica wanted nothing to do with him. Now they play. Even that's a struggle at times.

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  7. Welcoming siblings is not always easy. Good to know we can prepare them properly..

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  8. Undangan kadang bikin ribet sendiri mbak kalo aku, hahaha yang mau diundang berapa eh nggak taunya masih byak yg hrus diundang

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