Sarah from Surrey Mama shares her top tips on how to survive the heatwave with a toddler and baby.
Pre-mama the talk of a heatwave would fill me with great excitement. BBQ’s after work, check. Rose at lunch / in the afternoon, check. Topping up the tan, check. The only downside was the fact that I would be working for a few days but that didn’t stop us – lunchtime in the park anyone?
Things changed three years ago. I had a baby and as we know most babies are not big fans of the heat.
I remember the first heatwave I experienced with a child. It was my 30th birthday and Amelie was a week old. I sat in our living room, sweating while my little bundle of joy fed all day. It wasn’t quite the 30th bash I had envisaged!
Three years on the little baby is now a toddler and has been joined by another baby and neither love the heat. They both struggle to sleep, they’re on edge and grumpy, Evie always gets heat rash and keeping them cool is so difficult.
We’ve had some hot days recently so here are my tried and tested tips for surviving the heatwave over the next few days…
If like me your baby likes to sleep in a pram or buggy in the day, I do the following things to keep Evie more comfortable:
- I park her in the shade or in our garage which is much cooler than outside
- We bought a Bugaboo breezy hood for our buggy/pram but before this used a snooze shade. The heat can be immense in buggies so these are the best way I’ve found to keep the heat down for them
- Dress them in as little as possible
- Take away any big comforters, Evie loves her Jellycat elephant but it just makes her hotter
- I offer cooked boiled water before her sleep
In their rooms
- In the day keep curtains closed and open windows on the side of the house where the sun isn’t – this will let cooler air circulate. I then open the windows at night and use a fan to try and circulate some of the cooler air. If you can try an air conditioner do – this is on our wish list
- Have a good thermometer so you know the temperature and know what to dress them in. I always use the Grobag guide
- If you have a fan, put a bowl of cool water with ice in by the bottom and this will help blow cooler air round the room.
- Dress them lightly or in a nappy. We take Amelie’s duvet away and give her a big muslin to sleep with so she still has the comfort but is cooler
- I leave a beaker of water in Amelie’s cot for when she is falling asleep as often she is really thirsty after a day in the heat
Getting through the day
The hardest thing I’ve found with two is the toddler wanting to go outside but wanting to keep the baby out of the sun. To try and make it work for both of them here’s some ideas:
- Set up a travel cot in the shade and popped lots of toys in it so Evie can see Amelie and I – she can also move round which she likes at the moment rather than being confined to a bouncer or chair
- Fill a paddling pool with balls and put the baby in the shade, this keeps Evie amused for hours
- A cheap paddling pool with a little water will keep a toddler and baby happy – it’s just like an outside bath!
To keep them cool
- If you want to get them out and about do it first thing before it gets too hot. I find both girls get cabin fever if we’re in all day so this means we can still get out and about without it being too hot and difficult
- Make your own ice lollies, we love making these fresh strawberry and raspberry milky ice lollies
400g raspberries and strawberries
200ml semi-skimmed milk
405g can light condensed milk
You blitz the fruit up then mix in the milk and condensed milk, add to a lolly mould, freeze and you’re all set!
And if all else fails, find an outdoor pool (or get in the paddling pool) and make yourself a drink.