Eight Apps New Mums Need by Kristin Shorten
We use Windy ~ Sleep Relax Meditate with natural white noise sounds to calm your mind and focus to mask unwanted sound so that we don’t wake our daughter. We play the app through a speaker in her room at night or just through the device during naps or when travelling. Just remember to set your device to flight mode! We won’t stop using it anytime soon but we’re gradually lowering the volume so that our daughter doesn’t grow to depend on it for sleep.
I used Baby Feed Timer – Breastfeeding, Nursing, Bottle Feeding & Baby Development Log in the early months to let me know when a feed was due and which breast to start on because new-mum brain. The app also tracks feed duration, bottle feeds, breast pumps, nappies, sleep, solid food, weight, length, notes (ideal for recording baby’s temperature and medicine given) and notifications/alerts. Data is analysed ready for you and shows daily, weekly and monthly averages. See baby’s day at a glance and spot trends quickly with easy to read charts.
Little Mother’s Helper is a beautifully designed deck of cards to support new mamas. The app, created by former midwife Rebecca Egbert, blends both the standard physiological happenings in a woman’s body after childbirth with a connection to the deeper pieces in her life. It’s a companion with specific actions to help you feel better and heal body, mind, heart, and soul. It’s packed full of good, solid, real evidence–based information women need.
The Wonder Weeks app is an invaluable resource. Based on the international bestselling book The Wonder Weeks and more than 35 years of international scientific research, this app will keep you informed about the (mental) leaps and bounds of your baby — any time of day or night. It’s the perfect companion element to track your baby’s mental development during the first 20 months.
I’ve recently started using the Headspace: Guided Meditation and Mindfulness app in bed each night and it’s the most relaxing 10 minutes of my day. I look forward to and enjoy the time to myself each night to, let go of the day, clear my mind and prepare for sleep. I also find the three-minute SOS meditations beneficial to perform during the day if I feel stressed or need to reset.
We use VacciDate, developed by the Queensland Government in Australia, to manage our baby’s vaccination schedule. It enables users to enter a profile for each child; appointment dates for vaccinations; receive reminders before the next vaccination is due or appointment scheduled; and store a record for each child.
VacciDate exports appointment information to the user’s personal calendar and provides access to the Vaccination Matters website.
We limit our baby’s exposure to screens, but I get my sneaky TV fix using the Netflix appwhen my daughter’s sleeping on me. Here are a couple of new-mum recommendations:
BABIES simultaneously follows four babies – in Mongolia, Namibia, San Francisco, and Tokyo, respectively – from birth to first steps. This visually stunning documentaryshows the contrasts of the four cultures without using any form of narration, leaving it to the viewers to take from the film what they want.
First Comes Love, then comes marriage, then comes baby in the baby carriage. For filmmaker Nina Davenport, that old playground song didn’t go as planned. Single at age 41, she decides to have a baby on her own, never minding the odds stacked against her or the extra hurdles of living in New York City. Along the way, she explores the ever-changing definition of “family.”
One of the most pleasant surprises in motherhood has been that I’ve still had time and opportunities to indulge in one of my ultimate pleasures – reading – using my Kindle app. I haven’t pick up a book or my Kindle since my daughter was born, but I use the app daily. It’s perfect for reading while breastfeeding as you can adjust the screen brightness so it doesn’t light up a dim room and it has an easy search function, which I regularly used to scour the baby bibles I’d downloaded. Here are some of my favourite books, which helped me during the early months of motherhood.
Kristin is a mama, wife and journalist living in the Northern Territory, Australia.