6 Fun Ways to Celebrate the Holidays in the NICU

NICU baby at Christmas

When you think of holiday cheer, the hospital probably isn’t the first thing that comes to mind…

Getting into the seasonal spirit can be challenging when you’re spending the holidays in the NICU, but there are LOTS of fun (and easy!) ways to add some cheer. This is your little one’s first Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanza and that alone is reason to celebrate!                                     

If you’re wondering how you can celebrate holidays in the NICU, you’ve come to the right spot! We’ve got 5 festive ideas to welcome the holiday spirit no matter where you are:

  1.       Holiday Photo Shoot

Holiday cards might not be at the top of your to-do list, but you’ll still want lots of pictures of your family’s first holiday celebration. In addition to family photos you’ll cherish forever, think about adding some fun with holiday themed outfits, hats, blankets, or props. You can dress your NICU baby as one of Santa’s cutest elves, a beautifully wrapped gift, or a delightful little dreidel! Check Pinterest for awesome inspiration and get creative.

  1.       Deck the Halls

This might not be the year for a Clark Griswold-worthy light display, or a tree that could rival Rockefeller Center, but that doesn’t mean you need to skip the decorations completely. Ask your NICU what’s allowed, because sometimes a tabletop tree, some festive mini lights and a sweet stocking hung from your little one’s isolette make your NICU space feel merry and bright. You could even add stockings for your nurses and add a few fun surprises on the big day!

  1.       Sing a Song

No need to go caroling in the cold- you can sing (or just listen to!) your favorite songs of the season with your NICU baby right here in the NICU. There is nothing cozier than singing carols while cuddling with your precious little one, and it’s never too early to start teaching the songs that remind you of your own childhood holidays.

  1.       Read a Holiday Classic

There are countless holiday books, and hours spent in the NICU provide a great opportunity to enjoy them. Whether you’re reading aloud classic children’s stories, or even reading aloud a longer tale so your baby hears your voice, why not allow yourself a little holiday joy through reading?

  1.       Enjoy Some Tasty Treats

Holiday goodies are only here for a short time, and you don’t have to miss out because you are in the NICU moms and dads! You’re probably a bit busy to bake your own, but store-bought tastes just as sweet!! While you’re at it, consider picking up some extras to share your favorite treats with the NICU staff.

  1.       Choose the Perfect Present

One of the best parts about being a parent is creating holiday magic for your children. Your baby probably doesn’t need a whole lot this year, but that doesn’t mean you can’t buy a few things for the future! If there’s a special toy or keepsake you’ve been eyeing, go ahead and get it! When you pull it out later, it will spark wonderful memories of your first holiday season with your little one.

We know it’s not easy to spend this special season in the NICU, but we hope that you will create wonderful memories with the people you love no matter where you are. We wish you the happiest of holidays, and a magical new year!