There’s something magical about this time of year. It brings with it such hope for things to come. Nearly everyone we know is in good spirits. Friends and family are gathering together in support of one another. Love is in the air. Christmas songs are in the background. Food is on the table. What’s not to love about the holiday season?
If there was any way to make the Yuletide holiday a little sweeter, it would have to be adding a brand-new baby to the mix. There’s likely not a parent out there who ever found out their baby was going to be due in the Winter season and they weren’t happy about it. There’s something so cozy and intimate about this season. It invites us to come inside, curl up by the fireplace and drink hot chocolate. It brings warmth.
It reminds us of the things we loved when we were children, too. There might not be any better way to bring a child into the world than to parents who are reflecting on their own upbringings with family and thinking of all the traditions they’ll get to share with their new little squish. It’s a beautiful thing to watch our partners rocking the new baby to sleep by the light of the fire — or the Christmas tree.
Besides, there’s virtually no better time to be pregnant. Additionally, there may not be a better time to become unpregnant either. Just as moms are settling into their postpartum figures they can conveniently hide behind ugly Christmas sweaters, they’re overtaken by delicious Christmas cookies and champagne on New Year’s. Yep, we think the holiday season is the best time to have a baby; here’s why.
15 The Pictures
There is seriously no better time to have professional pictures taken than the holiday season. Both indoor and outdoor locations are trampled with prime photo ops that will garner more likes than Facebook has ever seen this year.
Every good mom-to-be who is due around the holidays has certainly perused Pinterest a time or ten and ogled the images of newborn babies wrapped up like Christmas presents in December.
Sometimes a day off is required to go take a stroll through a Christmas tree farm and look for the perfect backdrop. Moms and Dads should be sure to clean out their old photos from their phones before the baby is born — and maybe buy some extra gigabytes. That old iPhone will never fill up faster than when it’s both Christmastime and time for a baby to be born.
For the expectant mother who is worried her baby will never get to truly celebrate a birthday without it being merged into Christmas, they should consider the convenience of merging their Christmas and birthday portrait sessions into one. By the time parents have sat through one or two of these trying to get a toddler to smile and sit still, they might agree it’s worth the trade-off.
14 No Traveling
Forget about packing all those maternity clothes and every pair of boots into a suitcase so you can schlep off to the in-laws for Christmas. You have the perfect excuse this year to avoid all of your significant other’s family — and your own if you’re down like that. Hey, everyone has that one relative they’d rather not see during the most wonderful time of the year.
This year it’s all about making the most of the holiday season and cherishing the moments you’ll have with your tiny newborn. They don’t stay that way for very long if you haven’t heard. You can focus all of your energy on what to pack in your hospital bag instead. Take time to put up your Christmas tree and go all out with decorating. This may be the last one that can boast any glass balls at the bottom for a while. This time next year, you could have a crawling — or even walking — infant on your hands.
Ah, the joys of pregnancy. You can take naps without feeling guilty. You’re the center of attention. You also get to wear stretch pants for nine months and over-indulge whenever your body says you’re in the mood for ice cream or pickles. All jokes aside, pregnancy isn’t exactly a time to let loose. Good health is optimal now more than ever. You want to grow a strong and healthy baby after all.
Still, if there was ever a time to let yourself off the hook for bingeing on dessert or having seconds and maybe thirds, this is it. Not only is no one going to judge you, but you won’t even judge you. Your pants will never be this forgiving either.
For most people, Christmastime brings with it lots of cakes, pies, cookies, and hams. If you’ve already had your baby by Christmas, don’t worry! Just breastfeed! You need an extra 500 calories a day. That’s more than you actually needed while you were pregnant. There’s no reason you can’t enjoy cluster feeding just like your bundle of joy does!
12 Time Off From Work
Remember when you realized you’d only get twelve weeks off from work with your little one? Hey, some people don’t even get that much. Still, we aren’t exactly considering ourselves lucky over here when countries like Sweden are dishing out 480 days off with 80 percent of their wages — and Dads can make use of it, too.
While you might not get a year off with paid leave, you can relish the experience while you are off, and Christmas only adds to that. What was vacation time might just back up to days off that don’t count against you. Even if it doesn’t, is there any better time to suddenly be off from work that over the holiday season? You’ve got a newborn.
Enjoy all the downtime. Recover at home and watch as many episodes of A Christmas Story as you’d like while snugging with your little one.
11 A Full House
No more popping in and out of every party in town or skipping out of town altogether to be home for Christmas. This year, they can all come to you. Or if you prefer, everyone can wait until next year to wish you well and you can spend the holiday season at home with your partner bonding with the new light in your lives.
Another benefit of everyone coming to you is that you shouldn’t really have to cook. Most well-meaning relatives and friends won’t just pop in over the holiday season without some kind of good intention like a casserole. You’re a new mom! He’s a new dad! Anyone who has been there knows just how exhausted you are. If they offer to swing by and help clean up the house or bring you dinner, allow yourself the luxury and say yes!
10 Tis The Season For Sparkling Lights
Part of the reason the holidays are the best time to have a baby is because the world as we know it is truly never more beautiful. Sure, the sunsets in summer are gorgeous, but do they lend the same amber glow to a newborn baby’s skin as twinkling Christmas lights? I think not.
No hate to the summer babies. I have two of them myself, but I’m also a December baby and have one of those, too. There’s something pretty fantastic about the fact that almost everyone decorates their house for a month or longer for your birthday. You might get to cash in on bigger, better presents, too.
Yes, sometimes this means you will be slighted by having your Christmas and birthday presents grouped into one. However, people who don’t have birthdays close to Christmas don’t have this advantage. So, they likely always have a monetary limit on what presents they’ll get.
In addition, sometimes it’s far more feasible to get a gift that is normally very expensive but on sale at a steep discount merely because it’s Christmas. Trust me, it works out in our favor most of the time. I have never been one to complain about my December birthday. White blankets of snow and perfectly placed lighting that makes you look good in every picture. What’s to complain about?
9 The Medical Staff Are Merry
There might not be anything worse for women who are having hospital births to experience than medical staff that aren’t supportive of their birthing goals. Sometimes the nurses can be just plain rude, too! It’s understandable that everyone has bad days at work.
Still, these men and women work in an environment in which their one bad day in a bad mood can change the entire outcome of one of the most important days of someone else’s life.
It’s important that they stay vigilant of this, but sometimes it’s just not possible. Sometimes a nurse will mock a mother because she is planning a natural birth. Other times they’ll argue over technicalities that really don’t matter, like whether or not mom must have an IV lock in place throughout labor.
It’s not just nurses, either. The entire staff at a hospital is more likely to be cheerful and upbeat during the holiday season. They’re usually busier, yet they still do their work with a smile on their face when the nursing staff is wearing antler headbands and the doctor is in good spirits because he’s not on call on Christmas Day.
A chipper mood from the people who are helping you through labor is certainly not a bad thing.
8 Next Comes Tax Season
Anyone who is gearing up for holiday shopping might be entertaining the idea of tax season that is quickly approaching, too. We don’t get much in the way of a break between the two. So, when a baby is born over the holidays, many parents rejoice for the newly welcomed exemption.
Yes, exemption. Any baby born in the current year up until 11:59 PM on December 31st means they count as a tax exemption on your taxes for that year.
Some couples can expect a larger return on their refund. Others will just owe less. Either way, it’s certainly an added bonus when a baby comes along at just the right time. That being said, it’s definitely not a reason to have one altogether or a reason to try to push for delivery before the year is over.
If that bay isn’t coming on their own, it is perfectly safe to let them keep cooking until non-stress tests show otherwise — even as long as 43 or 44 weeks.
7 All That Snow
Yes, snow! Guess what snow means when you have a new baby? It means you have a reason to register for the super plush velvet JJ Cole cover you want so badly for the car seat and stroller. It also means you get to hide under your winter coat when you leave the house with your postpartum body all out of whack.
It means bulky boots are okay instead of trying to squeeze your swollen feet into holiday-suitable flats.
It also means you get to stay inside with the baby while your hubby clears all the snow and ice off the car. It means you won’t be shoveling the walkway this holiday season. It means someone is going to preheat the car like a roast is about to placed in it. It again means that people won’t expect you to travel to them with a new baby. Any questions?
6 Speaking Of Postpartum Changes
Yikes! You knew it was going to be interesting, but this is something else. Your stomach isn’t exactly pregnant anymore, but it’s not exactly not pregnant. Your skin isn’t all that taut like it was before you birthed that baby. You definitely had a little swelling before you brought the baby Earth side, but your calves and ankles are somewhat monstrous now.
Don’t worry! Tuck it all inside your favorite leggings. Drape a sweater over it and toss your winter coat overtop. No one will notice that anything is out of place — least of all your waistline. Good news for your roots that haven’t been touched up in months, too!
You can hide it all under a hat that matches your boots! People are going to tell you how great you look for just having a baby and they’ll actually mean it. Let them!
5 New Year’s Eve
You didn’t think this was going to be entirely about Christmas, did you? The holiday season is also great for bringing about New Year’s Eve. Prior to this year, you might’ve celebrated with friends all night long and drank the night away. This year, you might be dancing to celebrate that you’re no longer what seemed like 300 weeks pregnant.
Guess what else New Year’s means? You get to have a cocktail or two! You can party hardy with the rest of them if you’d like, but keep in mind that alcohol does transfer to breastmilk. As a rule of thumb, if you feel buzzed, baby might, too.
Everyone metabolizes alcohol differently, and it may be best to take it easy in the beginning so nothing hinders your milk supply. Alcohol is a diuretic after all. Otherwise, enjoy the holiday. Fortunately, newborns still sleep enough that staying up until midnight isn’t quite a problem just yet for moms and dads.
4 Saint Patrick’s Day
No, I’m not trying to stretch the holiday season out to March. Think back to last Saint Patrick’s Day. What were you doing? Stop right there. It’s possible you may have been knocking back a few green lagers and making your baby!
Whoa, didn’t see that coming, did you? Truth be told, the Christmas season is often full of birthdays and many of them stem from Saint Patrick’s Day celebrations.
Let’s break this down. Assuming a woman was ovulating on Saint Patty Day, her approximate due date would be December 8th. Of course, only 5 percent of women actually deliver on their due dates. Likewise, just half of first time moms will deliver by 40 weeks and 5 days, and 75 percent by 41 weeks and 2 days.
That means a quarter of first timers go even later than that. The moral of the story is to make sure you use protection when playing with your pot of gold this coming Saint Patty’s if you don’t want another baby in your manger next Christmas!
3 All The Parties
Whether it’s a Christmas party or a New Year’s Even shindig is irrelevant. You have a new baby. So, you have all the reason in the world to celebrate. By all means, if you’re in the mood to buy a new dress with cinching that hides all the lumps and bumps you’re still trying to breastfeed away, do it! If you’d rather have a low-key night in with friends, invite them over to meet the new little one.
Turn on your Christmas Carol playlist, or reflect back on your favorite years with a series of Now That’s What I Call Music CDs and relish how much things have changed. The here and now is what it’s all about after all. Ask each friend to bring a side dish and have hubby baste the ham.
Order take-out and eat Chinese like real New Yorkers this holiday while counting down the ball drop in Times Square from your living room TV.
If you’re feeling really adventurous, let the in-laws watch over your little one for an hour or two while you pop in and say your hellos at the neighbor’s Christmas Eve get-together. Seriously, if you can do that, you’re braver than I am. In case you’re not quite ready to leave your little one yet, stick to family-friendly events and wear baby in tow in your favorite ring sling.
2 The Cooler Weather
Oh, the weather outside is frightful… Scratch that. More like delightful. If you’ve never been so blessed as to be pregnant during the heat of summer, or even one really abnormally hot Spring day, then you have no idea just how awful and torturous it can be. Trust those who have experienced it for you. Being nine months pregnant in December is not something to complain about.
The colder months allow pregnant moms to feel comfortable when they are at the point that most moms-to-be starting to find pregnancy unbearable. It is also makes it a lot more inviting for pregnant mommas to soak their aching bodies in a hot bath. No one really wants to do that in the midst of July.
If that wasn’t enough, being in the postpartum stage of your life during the Winter months is a godsend. You can hide every flaw under an appropriate piece of clothing. I speak from experience when I say even your Bengkung belly binding wrap can be hidden under that tunic you’re saving for the Christmas season.
Soon again you will fit into all of your favorite pieces, just as long as you account for your swelling breasts that is.
1 The Best Christmas Gift Anyone Has Ever Received
This one probably goes without saying, but I’m going to say it anyway. Short of having another Christmas baby, you’re never going to experience Christmas like this — ever again. This is it. Relish it now. They grow up fast and by next year, the Christmas experience will be a whole new one complete with a baby that loves tearing apart all the wrapping paper.
Sure, that sounds ideal and it’s a beautiful thing to watch, too. But it’s not the same as cradling your week-old baby in your arms and watching them fall asleep to the sound of Bing Crosby. Having a baby during the holidays adds so much more joy to the season, and it’s not just for mom and dad either.
Siblings get to enjoy their new brother or sister. Grandparents get to visit and bask in the glow of the Christmas tree as their grandbaby coos. What is the holiday season if it isn’t about family? Soak it up and celebrate the new edition to the fullest while it lasts. It is as fleeting as freshly laid snow.