Give me your best advice!

As my belly swells more and more, I’m starting to think more and more about life after our son is born in January (assuming he follows the schedule).  I’m very excited to welcome a new member to our family.  And, just like last time when I was waiting for my daughter to arrive, I’m also terrified.  This time I have a much better idea of what to expect from a newborn than I did before.  That’s both comforting and alarming.  I know a bit more about what’s coming and how to handle it, but I also know what’s coming and wonder how on earth I’ll manage dealing with a newborn and a 3-year-old at the same time.  I keep reminding myself of a few things.  One, God won’t give me more than I can handle with His help.  Two, lot and lots of women have conquered this before me, so it certainly can be done.  And, three, I’m blessed with lots of help and support in my life from my husband and our extended family.

That said, I’m a total planner.  I like to prepare and plan for things as much as possible.  I know.  It’s sort of a joke when it comes to parenthood and babies.  I can make plans all I want, but reality doesn’t always (or even usually) stay within those very plans.  I planned things with my daughter that ended up being totally different.  And that’s OK.  I understand that happens.  I try very hard to make sure I’m flexible to change.

But, at the same time, I do want to listen to those who have gone before me as I think about what’s to come.  I know there are some things I can do to prepare myself and my family for the chaos that ensues with a newborn.  I’m making strides toward those things by doing things like trying freezer recipes, slowly stocking up on supplies we’ll need, Christmas shopping early (holy cow!  I’m pretty much finished!) and so on.

I still have questions and concerns.  I’ve asked a group of mom friends for their advice.  These are some sage women who are honest.  Now, I’m turning to you, my dear readers.  I want your best advice about going from one child to two.  I want your best insight.  I want your best tips for how to survive in practical and emotional ways.

– What do you wish you would have known before your second baby was born?

– What was most helpful or would have been helpful after your second baby was born?  Anything you’d do differently or keep the same?

– What surprised you most with having a second child?

– How and when were you able to manage going out in public with two little ones?

– How did you ever find the energy to take care of everyone?

– If you nursed your kiddos, what’s your advice on being successful the second time around?

– How did you prepare your first child for the new baby and what worked after the baby was born to help them through the adjustment period?

These are some of my questions — and anything else you can think of!  It’s your turn to talk to me.  Please don’t leave me hanging!  You can comment below, message me through Facebook or e-mail me (my address can be found on my Web site).  I’d love to hear from you!  You can answer one question, all the questions or leave other related feedback.

If you’re willing, I’d also like to compile your responses into a blog post.  Just share your first name and how old your kids are.  If you’d like to respond and not be included in the blog post, just tell me that, too.  I’m looking for responses through Nov. 13 to then post the responses on Nov. 15.  Talk to me, mamas!

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