Pregnancy is an amazing time, full of awe and gratitude for your body’s ability to grow another human being. It can also be a time of increased tension, muscle soreness, nausea and fatigue, along with all the other changes your body is going through.
When I was pregnant with my first baby, I was able to indulge in those late afternoon naps and weekend sleep-ins.
But with a second baby due next May, and a highly energetic 3-year-old running around, things are completely different now.
Since the time around the holidays can often be filled with extra stress and less sleep, pregnant mamas could definitely use some care-taking gifts. For Christmas this year, all she really wants is some R&R and a couple of items to help indulge in this pregnancy and relieve some stress.
This definitely tops my list. There’s nothing like an hour of someone else working your tired and sore muscles into jelly. With your body changing, your internal organs shifting around to make room for the baby, and more weight being added to your frame, you’re bound to carry around additional stress and tension. A trained massage therapist can work wonders on your pregnant body, including reducing swelling, back and joint pain, improving circulation, reducing tension and headaches, and assisting with stress.
Look for a therapist who offers prenatal massage or who has special pregnancy bolsters or table.
Spa Gift Certificate
Sometimes I think a 15-minute warm shower with no interruptions would feel like a day the spa—something only a parent could understand. Most moms I know would give almost anything for a spa day, and even a couple hours of blissful alone time getting pampered is my idea of heaven.
Time spent indulging yourself can also provide some much-needed relaxation for your body and mind. In the last trimester especially, a pedicure can help increase circulation, soothe those overworked feet, and also give you some beautiful new toes. A cleansing facial, a pedicure with foot massage, or a moisturizing body wrap would all be wonderful.
Pick up a gift certificate at a local spa, either for specific services, or to let her chose what suits her.
A Pregnancy Body Pillow
Body pillows offer much-needed support for tired limbs and changing proportions, and can be key for a good night’s sleep. Placing a pillow between your bent knees will support your back and also make side sleeping (the recommended position as of the second trimester) more comfortable.
A pillow tucked behind your back also helps with back support. There are numerous body pillows made specifically for pregnant mamas. The Snoogle by Leachco is one of the most popular ones and Babies R Us often has them on sale. If you’re tight on space in the bed, they also sell simple wedges to support the belly or sit between the knees.
This may sound like an obvious one, but few things are more precious to a pregnant woman, especially if she has another little one/s to look after. Sleep does amazing things for the body, and is a vital part of keeping us healthy, and our immune systems strong.
Partners take note: This gift is free.
Send your partner to bed early with a nice cup of herbal tea and a good book, and let her sleep in.
If she already has a child to take care of, an awesome gift from the grandparents would be to take the kid(s) for a sleepover and send the parents for a night away, or even a night in, with the opportunity to sleep in the next morning.
Pregnancy Pampering Kit and Cozy Pyjamas
Yes, this might sound boring, but believe me, as I get bigger and the weather gets colder, I really look forward to the time of day when I can slip into cozy PJs and slippers. A good-quality comfortable set would likely make any pregnant woman happy. Ideal fabric choices this time of year would be soft, natural bamboo or warm flannel, and they’re often on sale at Sears or Winners. On the higher end of the scale, I am in love with Canadian company This is J’s bamboo jammers. Hand-printed in Canada, these are the most comfortable pyjamas you’ll ever put on.
I would also be so happy to receive some pampering items for my growing and sore body. Items like natural body and belly butter or oil (for much-needed daily moisturizing and prevention of stretch marks), some relaxing lavender bath salts, and a calming prenatal tea would be great additions. Earth Mama Angel Baby even stocks a little pampering kit specifically for the mom-to-be.
Maternity Photo Shoot
I love the idea of having mementos of such an important time in my life. Now that my son can grasp the concept, he loves seeing pictures of my pregnant belly with him inside, and I love telling him stories to accompany the photos.
This one is especially great if you already have children. Since date nights with my hubby are not a frequent occurrence, we both relish the rare chances we get to linger over a long dinner and have an uninterrupted, purely adult conversation. Bonus points if you pick up a gift certificate for her favourite restaurant.