Being a parent is stressful. Rewarding? Yes. Enjoyable? Yes. But stressful? Definitely. Even those who have had children before find themselves a little overwhelmed the next time round.
When we spend our lives attached to our smartphones, it goes without saying that there’s an app to help you. Whether it be organizing feeding and sleep routines, or remembering the many baby groups and appointments, I’ve put together a list of the apps I used to help get myself together in those early weeks, and the apps I use even to this day.
Image taken from the Wonder Weeks website
The Wonder Weeks App
Based on the bestselling book, this app is incredible at breaking down all the leaps and milestones that your baby will go through, with easy to understand terminology and diagrams. It was especially great at showing where the next leap will take place, and the ‘storms’ you may encounter to coincide with this leap (clingy behaviour, sleep irregularities etc). It was fascinating to see the abilities that Owen was developing at each given stage of his first year, and how I could help both his learning and this transition in his life. I’m almost coming to the end of the span (It only covers the first 20 months of life) but I absolutely will be using this for any future children, as I found it fascinating to track their developments.
This app is a complete godsend! I take tons of photos (like so many do) but I only ever have them on my phone. I started to worry that my phone could easily get lost/stolen/damaged and I would lose those precious photos of my baby (I do back them up, but this is still an electronic copy). A friend told me about this app, and I use it every month. Basically, this app allows you to print and order up to 45 photos per month for free. Seriously, free. All you have to pay is the postage costs, and you can get 45 6×4 photos each month. You simply upload your photos from your phone into the app/twitter/instagram etc, and pay. It really is as easy as that.
Of course, you can pay to up-grade the picture size, whether you want it matte or glossy etc, but for 45 free photos each month, you can quite easily print off the pictures you love for family and friends, or simply to frame for your own homes. Not just for parents too; my sister uses this app to print off her holiday photos too!
Awesome Baby Tracker – This was an absolute godsend when Owen was newborn, to help me organize feeding and sleep routines, track nappies and liquid quantities etc. You can time breastfeeding, inset formula amounts, sleep times and so much more! Especially in those early weeks when everything can be all over the place, it helps to keep a log of everything so you can track patterns and trends. It was especially helpful for those midwife/health visitor appointments for feeding quality and temperatures.
As Owen was 5 weeks early and quite poorly to begin with, I found it so much easier to organise our routines when I knew what to expect. I was able to see trends in his eating and sleeping patterns, and was able to plan outings and mother/baby groups around his schedule. I don’t think I would have coped so well in those early weeks without this app.
Deep sleep sounds – This app provides relaxing and soothing sounds to help get baby off to sleep. Whilst I didn’t tend to use this when I was at home, I found this very useful when I was out and about, as I could simply choose a relaxing sound that helped soothe Owen and slip it in the pocket at the back of the pushchair to lull him off to sleep.
It was also great at helping me sleep, especially in those first few days. I was tired and wanted to rest when Owen was asleep, but too anxious to sleep in case he needed me. Playing this app helped relax me to get a nap whilst he slept, too. There’s everything you could want here; vacuum, hairdryer, rain, seagulls… the list is endless. Owen’s particular favourites were the sea, croaking frogs and raindrops. So soothing!
Let me know in the comments what apps you can’t live without as a parent!