Cute as he may be, your little one can create stress when it comes to celebrating the Raya festivities with family. No worries! Here are some pointers and tips to get you through it all.
1. Holiday Hitch: Your baby starts shrieking in the car before you even leave KL.
Babies this age can’t see much out of the window, and you can’t blame them for getting bored and fussy if there’s nothing to look at. Bring along an activity mat or other travel-friendly toys if your baby’s still in the rear-facing car seat. Anything bright and eye-catching with a few grabbable attachments will keep her busy, at least for a while.
2. Holiday Hitch: Your tot is totally stir-crazy.
Hours of chatting around the dining table can make anyone nutty, especially a little person who doesn’t talk (and may not even eat lemang and rendang) yet. The fix: fresh air. If you’re back in your hometown, use this opportunity to take a stroll together. As it’s a change from the normal environment he’s used to, he’ll surely be fascinated by the different sights and sounds in the area.
3. Holiday Hitch: Aunty Ani is antsy to feed your 6-month-old her favourite dish.
She means well (“I just want to see my nephew’s reaction!”), but heavy new foods can overwhelm a baby’s system or even cause an allergic reaction. Simply ward off forkfuls of tasty Raya treats by telling them that your pediatrician won’t allow it.
4. Holiday Hitch: Your infant refuses to nap when visiting Grandpa and Grandma.
Routine is king and babies thrive in predictable situations, so keep things as consistent as you can. However, the holidays aren’t a good time to sleep-train your baby. For better sleep in unfamiliar homes, introduce him to a white-noise machine to drown out firecrackers or sudden loud noises and provide baby with a comforting cue that it’s time to snooze.
5. Holiday Hitch: It’s time to nurse. Again.
At home you may happily breastfeed au natural, but during Raya visits, Ayuni – gentle birthing and breastfeeding advocate – suggests using a nursing cover. That way, you can avoid unwanted comments and raised eyebrows.
6. Holiday Hitch: It’s going to be a scorcher.
It’s hard to resist the urge to dress your baby in mini baju Melayu or baju kurung, but take care to choose clothes that are breathable and won’t irritate their delicate skin. (Sequins, beads or long drawstrings can pose a choking hazard, so choose a simpler, comfier outfit.) Also, bring a portable battery-operated fan that can be attached to the car seat or stroller to beat the heat.
7. Holiday Hitch: Cousins are eager to play with their new “dolly”.
Rambunctious big kids don’t always know how to interact gently with a newborn. Assign an older child to be the minder to remind other kids not to be too loud or rough around the baby.
8. Holiday Hitch: Your uncle’s cousin twice removed is eager to carry the baby.
Raya get-togethers usually involves a lot of people, many of whom your tot hasn’t met before or spent much time with. Try not to be upset or embarrassed when he cries in someone else’s arms. To calm him down, take him back and hold him yourself. Tell relatives that when they approach the baby, slow gentle movements will produce less anxiety than sudden ones.