Pandemic Pregnancy Pampering Pack

As an expecting mom, you’ve probably dreamed about what it might be like to feel a baby inside you, to watch your belly bump grow as you imagine life with your future child. Along the way, sharing the excitement and challenges of pregnancy with friends and family has always been considered a big part of this experience. How could we ever imagine that such a normal part of life would become so deeply cherished…and so painfully missed?

According to an article in The New York Times, researchers are now realizing the serious health effects of Covid-19, as well as pandemic life conditions, on pregnant women and babies. One study is currently tracking more than 200 women through pregnancy and for 18 months after childbirth, gathering data on the health of these women and infants.

Lead investigator “Dr. Jelliffe-Pawlowski and her team have analyzed the data from the first group of women, and they are finding ‘absolutely incredible’ levels of stress and anxiety…. ‘Sixty percent of women are experiencing nervousness and anxiety at levels that impede their everyday functioning,’ she said, citing preliminary data.”

It’s just not the same!

In these strange times, when so many people are feeling isolated and lonely, pregnancy can feel especially difficult. Physical and emotional changes are being experienced in a vacuum. The social network of friends and family that have traditionally provided strength and support for pregnant women has been removed. Supportive hugs from friends and relatives that would normally be abundant are now completely absent. It’s natural to experience anxiety in such conditions. Yes, you are incredibly grateful to be expecting a baby, and of course you truly appreciate the amazing blessings in your life, but damn, this is hard!

Mama, it will get better. We promise. And you are doing the right thing by staying home and safe, as challenging as it may be. It’s true you’re missing so many of the joys that pregnant women have always taken for granted, but you are going to be okay. You are brave and strong, and we want to help you celebrate your pregnancy with a few little gifts that you can enjoy from the comfort of your home. Here are some treats that are not just fun but also important ways to support your emotional and physical health.

7 free gifts to help expectant mamas survive and thrive

  • Would you like a pregnancy spa day? Of course you would! Here are some fun and easy ideas from Everymum for creating a relaxing, soothing, pampering atmosphere right at home: DIY Prenatal Spa Day.
  • Aromatherapy has been proven to reduce stress and create a feeling of well-being. Why not add a prenatal aromatherapy self-massage to your spa day? Here’s a recipe from Nikole at Health Nut Nutrition that’s safe to enjoy during pregnancy: DIY Belly Oil for Pregnancy and Postpartum.
  • The stress of the pandemic is leaving many of us with a need for a cocktail. Here are some fun and easy mocktail recipes from Casey at DIY Playbook that are even better than the real thing: Refreshing Mocktails for Pregnancy.
  • Preggie Veggie’s Easy Peanut Butter and Oat Cookies

    After your spa day you might be in the mood for some decadently delicious treats. FittaMamma shares some extra healthy dessert recipes created just for pregnant women. Each of these yummies offers the extra nutritional boost you need right now, but they’re so incredibly delicious you won’t realize how good they are for you: Healthier Pregnancy Treat Recipes. Also be sure to check out the variety of mouth-watering healthy recipes developed by Victoria at Preggie Veggie.

  • We all know about the powerful benefits of meditation. This beautiful guided meditation from Yogi Candi will help you to relax and bond with your expected little one: Guided Meditation for Prenatal Bonding.
  • If you’re in the mood for learning more about how to bond with your baby prenatally, we’ve discovered some informative and interesting podcasts that highlight discussions with experts in the field. (Shameless plug: Jackie and Susan are special guests on the Stork Storytime podcast, all about reading to babies in utero!)
  • Finally, if you’d like to connect with your baby by reading, you can start with Belly Books, written specially for the purpose. And then try singing the lyrics as a lullaby! As you know, research shows that talking, reading and singing to your baby prenatally creates a beautiful bond that strengthens and enriches your relationship with baby when he or she arrives.
Snuggle up with Belly Books

So if lockdown has got you feeling like a fairytale princess locked in a gloomy castle tower, we invite you to turn that tower into a cozy sanctuary. Look at this extra time as a gift, and use it to connect even more closely with your baby without the distraction and noise of the outside world.

The more you can relax, the more your baby will relax inside you. The more you talk, sing and read to your baby, the more he or she will become accustomed to your voice. You can build memories and share love now, in this quiet time before the world returns to normal. When baby arrives, you’ll know in your heart that you helped each other survive and thrive during these months, and your bond will be all the stronger for it.

This Father’s Day, feel like the Dad you already are

It comes so naturally for an expectant mother to bond with the baby who’s sharing her body. For the expectant father, it might take a little encouragement. If you’re a new family in the making, right now is the perfect time to celebrate Daddy-to-be and his very real connection with the baby in the womb.

To experience this connection is deeply moving during pregnancy and amazing to witness after birth. And the effects can last for years to come!

  • This study by the American Psychological Association found that patterns of bonding established before birth affected parents’ and children’s levels of stress and anxiety into the toddler years.
  • This study found that fathers who took an active role in the early stages of their babies’ development led to their children performing better in cognitive tests by the age of two.
  • And this one demonstrated that fathers who embrace becoming a parent from their child’s infancy are less likely to have children with behavioral problems before teenhood.

Talking to the baby in utero is one of the first and best ways for the father-to-be to start loving, caring for, and teaching his baby. From the third trimester or earlier, a baby’s ears are developed enough for her to hear both of her parents’ voices. It will help, of course, if Daddy gets close and speaks, laughs, and sings directly to the bump.

And reading aloud is an especially powerful way for him to share his voice. Numerous studies have shown that babies in utero can recognize and remember stories read aloud to them, especially in the last trimester of pregnancy. Newborns then respond to those same stories, especially read in the familiar voices they heard from the womb.

To get started, Dad-to-be can:

  • Designate a special time every day (bedtime is great!) to snuggle up with Mom-to-be and take turns reading to baby.
  • Choose a story that’s rhythmic and repetitive; the research says that babies respond best to stories with an inherent beat.
  • Read the same few stories or poems every time so they—and Daddy’s unique voice—will become familiar to the baby.
  • Watch the magic begin when the baby is born! The newborn will be calmed by the voices of both parents and will listen attentively to the story she’s already come to love.

What an incredible connection you both will have created with your child, to last the rest of your lives!

Happy Father’s Day!

Celebrate the senses, celebrate Mother’s Day!


Congratulations, mom-to-be! Pregnancy is such an amazing experience, even in times like these.

And there’s one big benefit to these days of social isolation: the less focus you’re putting on the world out there, the more you’re putting on this mysterious little creature in here. This is a wonderful time to bond with your baby-to-be!

Thanks to decades of research into fetal development, it’s become clear that babies can hear, taste, smell, and feel from inside the womb. This means that you are already communicating with your baby through the food you eat, the fragrances you smell, the touch of your hands, and especially the sound of your voice. According to Deepak Chopra, sharing the experience of your five senses with your baby “creates a nurturing environment” for yourself and baby, before birth and after.

So cherish all this extra time at home, and use it to make that multisensory connection as your unborn baby grows. Really taste your breakfast, your smoothie, your snacks and meals! Really smell the flowers, your coffee, your soap! Notice all over again the pictures on your walls, the views from your windows or in your back yard. Try out all the comfiest spots for curling up or lying back as lazy as can be.

And while you’re there, start reading aloud! This is the very best way to bond prenatally. Hearing is the sense that is most highly developed in utero, and the one that gives you (and Daddy and big brother/sister-to-be!) the most direct connection with your baby.

So many studies have shown that babies in the womb hear, recognize, learn and remember their mother’s voice (and others’!) and respond to it after birth. This means your familiar voice will calm your newborn baby, and she’ll even recognize stories she heard you read — the best way to raise a book lover and a kid who loves to learn.

Meanwhile, nurturing yourself and your baby right now will help to release endorphins, or feel-good hormones, which will communicate to you and your child, “All is well and calm and safe. Rest, relax, and grow, and soon you’ll join us in this beautiful world.”

What better way to wish yourself…

Happy Mother’s Day!


You can do it, everyone!

Best sibling bonding ever when you read to the bump together!


The Belly Books Giveaway ends today! 

Click here for all the info!

Relax and get cozy

Take some Me time and read to the bump!


Don’t miss the Belly Books Giveaway! 

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Hey, gorgeous!

Read to the bump —
and do it with flair!


Don’t miss the Belly Books Giveaway! 

Click here for all the info!

Got some time on your hands?

Read to the bump —
multitasking allowed!



Don’t miss the Belly Books Giveaway! 

Click here for all the info!