3 Tips on How to Dress a Baby
One of my favorite holidays, Succot (Feast of the Tabernacles,) comes up every fall. It means we all migrate outside for a week and live in temporary dwellings. These beautiful little huts pop up all over the city and make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. It's a reminder of the commitment we made to G-d and the care and love he promises in return. It's a reminder that we are His children and it's an extremely special occasion to connect to our own children, building special family bonds. It's the moment we get to relax, after weeks of high holidays and pressing prayer. It's the feeling of being enveloped in love and spreading even more love.
While in Jerusalem, Israel, it may still be summer weather, (even though we all secretly wish for those frosty, cozy nights we remember as kids,) I know there are other places in the world, where my readers might be, where it does actually get chilly outside in your Succahs.
In this blog post I wanted to share my three best tips for dressing babies, so you can bring them out to the Succah with as little worry as possible!
1. Always remember the +1 Rule!
Kind of like improv, babies have a "Yes and.." rule. They should always be dressed similarly to what your wearing... AND with one more layer on top. Sweater? Great! Baby can wear a sweater plus a blanket. You're not wearing anything on your head? Great! Baby should probably have a hat! Always remember that babies have a much less effective body temperature regulating system.
That means they will get cold way before you- and we don't want to wait until then!
2. Fingers and Toes and that Tiny Baby Nose...
Eyes may be the window to the soul, but for babies, toes and fingers are the window into their internal regulating system. I once heard a nurse say "Well their fingers are the furthest from their bodies, so don't check that for temperature.." Hmm. That makes no sense to me. JUST THE OPPOSITE. Toes and fingers are the furthest point from our internal organs, so they are a good indication of our bodies need to pump the nice warm blood into our center, to keep that warm! If toes and fingers are cold, (and the tip of your baby's nose!) it's a straight message telling us to get on our game warming up the rest of their little bodies, so that heat can be provided back to the fingers and toes. You can cover your baby's toes with footsie pajamas, (socks tend to fall off and get lost, not to mention they are a waste of money) and your baby's hands with outfits that have built in hand mitts; but also make sure to put one more layer on their middle, then their outer extremities will warm up naturally, as well.
3. Layers, Just Like Ogres.
I mentioned layers in the past two points, but to go back to that for a minute, because "everybody loves parfait," ammiright?:
Layers can be tricky. People often think it's best to put those adorable little coats on babies, and then just pile it ALL on. Remember, especially if you're about to buckle them into a carseat so you can put them down in the Succah, you're much better off dressing them regularly, and then putting a nice, warm blanket over the straps of the carseat. Puffy coats can be a choking hazard for little babies, so always make sure you can see clear airways.
4. BONUS TIME!
Last but not least, remember: Close to you is better for two. For you and baby, that is. Having the baby as close to you as possible is the best bet; so, as much as you can hold the baby to your chest, whether that be in a wrap, carrier, or in your partner's arms also, the more you'll be able to closely and instinctively monitor how comfy and warm s/he is.
I hope these tips help you have a worry-free, enjoyable holiday and you can spend time with your family to the fullest.
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