A Word from a New Mom

Posted by  | Thursday, September 9, 2010  at 4:38 PM  
I (Leah P) asked my cousin Kari if she could write a few words about her recent experience with receiving meals after the birth of her (adorable!) new daughter. Here's what she had to share...

Having meals brought to our home after the birth of our daughter was such a blessing. Our church lines up seven meals for families after the birth of a child or major surgery. We were able to choose whether we wanted a meal every day for a week or every other day for two weeks. We went with the every other day plan. I figured we would be able to fill in with leftovers or something quick and easy that my husband could make. I really enjoyed having people stop in and see our baby. However, it was also very taxing at times. Fortunately, most of the time when our meals were delivered, my mom or husband was also home to let the people in, put things away, etc. All of the people who came were quite courteous and would take a quick peek at the baby if she wasn't eating and maybe hold her for just a bit before heading out. I was thankful for this as we had quite a bit of family and close friends stopping in for longer amounts of time. One thing I was able to take away from this experience was that if the new mom is not a relative or close friend, but rather someone from church that I'm not that close with, dropping off a meal and only staying a few minutes is all that is really necessary. The point of taking a meal is to help out the new mom, not give myself an excuse to go hold a newborn for an hour. Chances are that the baby will be sleeping and the mom probably should be too.

Another thing to keep in mind is the amount of food you take. Since this was our first, it was just my husband and I that needed to eat. We received a few meals that would have fed around six people. Don't get me wrong, leftovers are great, but you can only eat something so many times. Plus, there was more food coming two days later. If a recipe makes quite a bit, a good idea might be to make half for the family to eat that night and freeze half for them to get out later. Once the meals stop coming, starting to cook again can be a lot of work. Having something quick and easy to throw in the oven would be a great help.

Everyone who brought us a meal also brought dessert. This was a nice treat since I don't normally make dessert. However, I ate way too many cookies those first few weeks, not because I wanted to, but because they were there (okay, and I really like cookies). It was a lot easier to grab a cookie than to figure out something else to eat as a snack. My lack of will power may have also had something to do with it. Taking a small amount of dessert and then also a bowl of grapes (or some other quick, easy, and healthy snack) might be a good idea.

Something I would have never thought of is to ask the family you are taking a meal to if they have any food allergies. Having none myself, this is the farthest thing from my mind. Several of the people who brought us meals called in advance to ask.

Overall, our experience with receiving meals was wonderful. It was such a blessing and another reminder of why we love our church family so much. They displayed Christ's love in the way that they served us. They kept in mind that service is about the one you are serving, not about yourself.

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