There is so much that goes into planning that happens for birth and baby, but often, the postpartum period is forgotten about. I will be doing a 3 part series on how to help prepare for postpartum. Some new families decide to have family and friends provide meals to them after baby has arrived, but there can be a lot going on afterwards, especially if your birth did not go as planned. Having all your meals brought in the first week or several people over at a time can become overwhelming, fast. I always recommend my clients use one of these user friendly meal train sites:
These sites allow you to plan ahead, making notes of your favorite meals, foods you like/dislike, and allergies. You can utilize their built in calendars, selecting which day’s are good for dropping off and how long you want to receive meals. The calendar also allows your friends/family to see what others are brining. Trust me when I say, you will receive pizza, spaghetti, casseroles and lasagnas… it gets old very quickly.\
1) Set It Up
Set up your account prior to your due date and enter all the necessary information.
2) Choose what you want in a meal
This is ok! After all, you and your family will be the ones eating. Is a good balanced meal important to you? Maybe you like to have a meat, starch, and veggie included into your diners. Maybe you’d like a meal from your favorite restaurant some night. Be specific, it’s ok.
Pick the length of time you want to receive meals. I highly suggest spreading this out over the first 6 weeks, with drop offs 2-3 days a week within certain hours.
4) Meal Coordinator
Get the train rolling! You will be focusing on other things, so assign someone to be your ‘meal coordinator’. Once you are ready to announce baby has been born, have this person log onto your meal train and activate it with your predetermined, and adjusted, length of time.
5) The Calendar
Insist people only using the online calendar. It is much easier to coordinate, you don’t have to try and remember who is bringing what when, and it can easily prevent you from receiving the same meals.
So, what foods are great for a postpartum mother?
A well balanced meal, high in protein and good calories, is always ideal. *If you are breastfeeding, you may want to keep acidic and gas producing foods to a minimum.
- Beef Stew with French bread*
- Roasted Chicken with Veggies
- Crowd Pleasing Meatball Tortellini Soup with French bread
- Homemade Chicken Pot Pie
- Taco Bar, Black Beans, and Spanish Rice
- Meatloaf with mashed potatoes and salad
- Super Salad (ALL the fixin’s)
- BBQ Pork Sandwiches*
- Breakfast for dinner
- Orange Glaze Chicken with green beans
- Baked Potatoes with Salad
- Chicken Soft Tacos*
- Red Beans and Rice
- Teriyaki Chicken*
- Stuffed Bell Peppers
- Beef Stroganoff with Salad
- Chicken & Broccoli Alfredo
- Chicken Enchiladas, Black Beans, and Spanish Rice
- Meatball Subs*
- Roast Beef with veggies
- Roast Beef covered in Crushed Italian Tomatoes with Mashed Potatoes & Salad
- Chili & Cornbread*
*Easy Crockpot Meal
Tips for your Family & Friends!
- Use disposable pans! It’s great to receive meals from those that care, but it’s even better to have no dishes afterwards!
- LABEL your meal with the recipe
- Stick to the calendar
- Try to bring more than one meal at separate times
- Avoid too many casseroles, but keep meals simple, 1-3 dish meals.
- Maker sure your meal will easily fit into a freezer
- Have the meals ready to dump into a crockpot or oven. Ziplocks work great for this! Use sandwich sizes and quart sizes to divide up ingredients (if necessary) and then into a large gallon size bag.
- Offer to help with something around the house when you drop off, and new parent’s, ACCEPT that help! New parents are sleep deprived and trying to readjust. Load/Unload the dishwasher, fold a basket of laundry, do a quick cleaning sweep of the bathroom, empty the trash, etc.
- Don’t stay too long. While they are grateful for your kindness, they also need rest.
- Add a personal touch. Include a thoughtful note, a product they enjoy, or package it nicely
- Most importantly, follow through. You made a commitment and the family is expecting your meal. If you don’t deliver, they are now scrambling to come up with something last minute.