You’re starting to feel a bit too much like jolly ol’ St. Nick, sans the bushy white beard and heavy red suit. Even though you’re waddling your way through life right now, you still have all of that holiday “stuff” to get done. No one’s expecting you to chop down a tree or slide down a chimney, but you do have some (or a lot of) holiday shopping that needs to happen. Don’t stress Mama, you can totally make it through your shopping list, even if you’re *very* pregnant.
1. Keep water with you. Staying hydrated is a top priority when you’re preggo, especially when you’re trekking through the mall. The herds and heat can quickly make you feel faint or bring on a bout of morning sickness. Slowly sipping on a cool bottle of water (and a squeeze of lemon or a bit of ginger, if you’re already feeling nauseated) can make your shopping trip all the easier!
2. Pick shopping shoes. Those cute little boots (you know, the ones with the three-inch heels) aren’t going to cut it. Hey, they weren’t even comfortable before you were pregnant. Now that your center of gravity is moving, your back is aching and you’ve got a couple extra pounds of baby to deal with, you don’t need to be teetering on a pair of painful shoes. Go with flats — ones that also offer support. Nix the flimsy ballet styles, and opt for something that you’d wear to the gym.
3. Layers are your friend. It’s hot. Now it’s cold. You’re in the mall and sweating. Then you’re in the parking lot and shivering. Wearing layers helps you to stay warm when you need to, and take them off when you don’t.
4. Spread it out. Divide and conquer is your motto. You used to knock out an entire eight nights of Hanukkah presents in one marathon shopping session, but now that you’re walking for two, your body might not want to cooperate. Give your baby-filled body a break and spread your shopping trips out. Start early (a few weeks before the holiday) and take it slow. This might mean buying for one person on each trip or grouping your gift-buying by store.
5. Be a bathroom spotter. You have to pee every five minutes, so let’s not end up running frantically around Target searching for a bathroom. Make sure that you know where to find the facilities in each store that you visit. And don’t forget to schedule a bathroom break before leaving the mall. Holiday shopping traffic can be worse than what you have to deal with during your daily rush-hour commute. Don’t get stuck in a line of cars with a bladder full of lemonade, ginger ale and water.
6. Skip the “big sales.” Yeah, we all know that having a baby brings on brand new expenses galore. But rushing off to the “one day only” sale might not be the best idea for a very pregnant woman. Standing in long lines, just waiting to get into the store, may make your aching back and sore feet feel worse. Along with that, the potential for pushing and shoving (as the Christmas-crazed crowd runs toward the latest, greatest toy of the year) is dangerous.
7. Travel light. You’re already carrying around an entire human being in your belly. Why add to the weight and sling on a hefty sized tote? Bring the smallest purse possible. This takes some of the stress and strain off of your body, making your shopping experience much less tiring.
8. Bring a friend. If only you had the extra cash to hire a butler, someone to traipse along behind you, carrying your shopping bags. Even though this isn’t exactly realistic, you can ask a friend to help you with some of the bag burden. Chances are, your BFF won’t mind helping you out by carrying a bag or two!
9. Take a snack. For some women, morning sickness is a 24/7 challenge. Nix the nausea with a snack while shopping. Instead of waiting in line at the food court to buy over-priced, over-greasy food that will turn your tummy, pack a baggie of crackers and cheese or whatever makes you feel not so nauseated.
10. Shop online. Seriously. You can get almost anything you want — and all without ever leaving your comfy, cozy couch. Yeah, yeah, the whole going out to the mall is part of the holiday cheer. But being pregnant puts you in a bit of a special situation this year. Even the most seasoned shoppers may want to bench themselves to their browsers.
Share your preggo shopping tips with us @BritandCo!
(Photos via Getty)