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What About The (ugh) Housework? How Can I Keep Up while I Have a Breastfeeding Baby?

In a word--simplify! Clear the decks. You will have to childproof soon anyway. Put away the collectibles and knick-knacks for now. If you are still pregnant, do a thorough cleaning and de-cluttering now. Decide which aspects of a clean house are most important to you and your partner, and learn to be satisfied with that (for now). A phrase to remember is "people before things." Your baby is tiny for such a short time. Your little ones will remember the hugs, outings, and fun family projects. A house in some disorder doesn't matter to them! It may be hard to let go of a spotless house, if your own parents were "clean freaks." But, face it, childcare and feeding take many hours a day. Something's got to give!

Use a box to go from room to room, picking up assorted clutter, toys, clothes. The rooms will look more organized and the stuff can be sorted out later.

If your baby doesn't want to be put down, wear him or her in a sling, and learn to get some things done together.

Make a list of "to do" projects and prioritize them. Just getting one job crossed off your list each day will give you a feeling of accomplishment. Don't tackle the really big projects now. Find ways to accomplish parts of jobs in short ten-minute bursts.

Keep meals simple too. On weekends, try to cook double batches of food, and freeze them. Use a slow-cooker, and you can get a meal started mid-morning, when the baby is content, not at the last minute, in the cranky time of the evening. Shop for nutritious food that can be prepared as easy-fix snacks. See WHOLE FOODS FOR THE WHOLE FAMILY, and WHOLE FOODS FROM THE WHOLE WORLD, published by LLLI, for delicious ideas.

Recommended Reading: Our resource pages on Family Life and Activities, and Nutrition and Recipes.

Our FAQs present information from La Leche League International on topics of interest to parents of breastfed children. Not all of the information may be pertinent to your family's lifestyle. This information is general in nature and not intended to be advice, medical or otherwise. If you have a serious breastfeeding problem or concern, you are strongly encouraged to talk directly to a La Leche League Leader. Please consult health care professionals on any medical issue, as La Leche League Leaders are not medical practitioners.

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