Dad Tip #31 – Make sure you refill the diaper bag with all of the necessary items.

A baby diaper bag
Rockstar dads fill diaper bags.

Diapers and wipes run out, toys and snacks get moved from place to place. It’s important to refill the diaper bag to ensure you have everything you need before you leave the house. Make sure to also include a backup outfit for baby in case of spills.

New Dad Tip #27 – Learn to swaddle

If you aren’t familiar with the calming influence of swaddling, please review one of the many how-to videos online or ask family or friends how it’s done. I was thankful enough to learn during a get together with some other new dads from my Church and it changed so much of my early experience.

It’s essential for many babies during the first few months, because it simulates the environment of the womb and it’s a tremendous help for many new parents.

Tip #18 – If you’re going somewhere, plan for one hour before you leave the house

Time goes by quickly with a new baby in the house.

When the family is preparing to head out and you are scrambling to grab the right toys, put the baby in the car seat/stroller, find the blanket, wipe up the unexpected spit up, it’s easy to lose track of time. In order to arrive at your destination at a reasonable time, plan for an hour of prep time before you leave.

New Dad Tip #17 – Never leave your child unattended on an elevated surface (even for a moment) –

If you find yourself saying “I’m just picking up something off the floor,” or “It’s OK, he doesn’t know how to roll,” or “I have her strapped in the car seat, I’ll just put her over here while I wash my hands”, please keep in mind that babies are constantly learning and making new movements. If you need to put the baby down, make sure it’s safely in a crib, pack & play, or on a low, steady and flat surface.   

It only takes a moment for a fall, bump or bruise.

New Dad Tip #15 Expect the Unexpected

Man looking off into the distance
Parenting can be a search for answers.

Oh they didn’t tell you that your newborn daughter would have a bloody diaper during the first week of her life when she has a mini period? Don’t freak out. All parents have questions and experience new unforeseen challenges. If you experience something new, reach out to family and friends with kids who can answer your questions.

And remember: Dude it’s cool.

New Dad’s, expect the unexpected.

Dad Tip #11 – Tell your partner if you’re close to hitting the wall:

This is an important lesson. No one cares about your lack or sleep, so MAN UP! With that being said, you are still human and there may be an occasion where you just need to recharge. It’s better to tell your partner when you’re close to feeling beat, than to hold it in and reach a breaking point. Sleep-deprived conversations can lead to anger, and snapping at each other, when all you need is a little time in bed. Tell her in advance when you’re feeling sleepy. Together, you can work out cues when you need to take a nap, or need to go to bed early. Before hitting the sack, she’ll probably give you a few small tasks like replacing the diaper genie, taking out the recycling, or watching the baby for a few minutes while she goes to the bathroom. Once you’ve given her some time, there’s a good chance you’ll get a chunk of time to yourself. Just make sure you’re ready to take over when she hits the wall.

Tip #9 Keep your wife hydrated:

Make sure to hydrate!

New moms are often stuck in place while nursing and rarely have a free hand to hold a glass. If your baby has had a restless night, your wife might have gone hours without replenishing her own fluids. Hand her a glass of water and remind her that it’s essential to her health to keep hydrated.

A buddy of mine said that his wife literally reacted more enthusiastically when he brought her a cup of water while breastfeeding, than when he gave her a pair of earrings while they were dating. While you’re at it, drink some water yourself.