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We're only expecting #4 , but the way people react, you'd think it was #12 !
7 sounds like a really fun number. :) Want to teach me how to have a calm, mellow, post partum period? Our #3 was several years behind #2 , so my "big kids" (ages 4 and 6 were pretty self sufficient in a lot of ways, and I felt like I had a really lovely post partum period), but this time they'll be almost 7 and 9 and barely 2, and I remember the chaos when #2 was born! We're homeschooling too, so I'm a little anxious about working all of that in as well. Share your tips?!
 

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I also felt like 4 was a new era in our family size. As an Orthodox Jew in an orthodox community in Israel, I'm not sooo weird, but I can imagine that in the USA in most places 4 would be enormous.

I think after 3 it's just more of the same, so first of all, I'm thinking that this will be calm for you in that way as far as just knowing your groove and such.

But if you are serious about post prtum, no you should be, imo, then the answer is to figure out the help you will need and make that happen for yourself.

I, too, am a homeschooling mother and all f my family is abroad, so I spent the first 5 pp periods in survival mode and it was not good because there is a better way.

So to me, I needed naps. I needed food. And I needed visitors to check in on me and to know that someone cared. I also needed to be extra gentle with myself because I needed to feel that I was on a healing vacation for myself.

Here's what I did,

1. Filled my freezer. I had a friend throw me a birthing way and asked all guests to bring a frozen meal to stock my freezer. I also made doubles and triples of everything for the freezer. I used this during nausea in the last month and during times of exhaustion and also after the birth. I bought a seperate freezer second hand very cheaply to accomidate this need. 2 or 3 guests also brought soups and paper cups and spoons to eat it at the birthing way and some cookies. I didn't have to do a thing but tidy up and get the husband and kids out. Was awesome!

2. Had older kids watch the toddler while I napped with baby. Also called in mothers helpers and babysitters to watch the children or take them to ethe park while I took a nap.

3. Husband stayed home for 2 weeks. Non negotiable. I stayed in the bed.

4. I had 2 under 2 and a 3 yr old and more besides, so 2 kids who needed carried up stairs. My eldest did the carrying, or a big kid followed the toddler up while he crawled. I held the newborn and sat on the first stair. Then sat on the next and sat my way up the stairs while holding a newborn for when my bigger kids couldn't carry. I spent 6 weeks like this. It sent an important message to me and the children that I was healing.

5. Ongoing food. Friends and neighbors were asked to bring food. Even 1 meal a week. A friend offered to do this if I paid for the grocery bill and that's reasonable.

6. Understand that money is G-ds job. When we are doing something as holy as raising children, G-d needs to provide the money for us to do this. For many children I said I couldn't afford this, but with my 6th I had no choice. I needed help. So I said ok...and somehow, magically, we eventually paid all our bills.

7 and 9 are great ages. They can help a lot. I sat with my children and said, look,we all need to take on some more chores. My 10 yr old manages the kitchen and has since he was 9. That's Dishes, cleaning the table, etc... my 7 yr old does all the sweeping and vacuuming. I have an older one who does baby duty, but she can realistically only handle one baby at a time. My 5 year old has been doing things like shoe rack management, holding dustpans, some light dishwashing since he was 4. My 2 year old holds dustpans and picks up after himself (toys, etc) with supervision. He also can bring diapers, silverware to the table and more.

That's pretty much all my secrets right there. ;)

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We're only expecting #4 , but the way people react, you'd think it was #12 !
7 sounds like a really fun number. :) Want to teach me how to have a calm, mellow, post partum period? Our #3 was several years behind #2 , so my "big kids" (ages 4 and 6 were pretty self sufficient in a lot of ways, and I felt like I had a really lovely post partum period), but this time they'll be almost 7 and 9 and barely 2, and I remember the chaos when #2 was born! We're homeschooling too, so I'm a little anxious about working all of that in as well. Share your tips?!
 
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