Being a first time mom I feel like there’s so much to do, with such little time! Thank god for Pinterest and Instagram to give me some sort of guidance on what to do and where to begin! After scouring the internet for days and going room by room in my house, I have come up with a list of things I’d like to get done before baby de arrives.
FYI – This list I’ve compiled is in no particular order of importance. Some things may apply to you, some may not 🙂
1. Prep the house (“Nesting”)
- Get a pool fence (if you have a pool)
- Tackle any big projects you have around the house! Paint, renovate, etc.
- Deep clean (or hire someone to)
- Start organizing anything in your house that needs to be organized – go room by room!
- Purge as much as possible! Baby will bring in so many new items!
- Start stocking up on home items – paper towels/toilet paper/paper goods
- Decide if you want to switch your household cleaning items to all natural products and stock up on those. I plan on switching to mostly Babyganics products. I use the app ThinkDirty to help me determine how “clean” a product is! Don’t be greenwashed by products like Mrs. Meyers 🙂
2. Read books
I’ve made a list of baby books I want to read and I hope to tackle at least a few.
3. Meal Prep
I’m definitely not a “meal prepper” on a regular basis, but the idea of having to cook while juggling everything else that comes along with having a newborn just sounds god awful! I plan on getting a handful of freezer meals prepped and ready so they can easily be thrown into a crock-pot or in the oven by anyone – including my husband!
Also, don’t be afraid to lean on friends and family for help. I’m lucky enough to have a chef for a father that enjoys making us food even without being asked to! But, you can always start, or have someone start for you, a meal train.
4. Baby Related Things
- Prepare a nursery – if you choose. In Jewish tradition it is bad juju to set up before hand, so my husband and I won’t be doing much to the room other than painting.
- Start assembling baby items. Last thing you’ll want to do with a newborn your first night home is attempt to set up the bassinet! Install your carseat!
- Wash and organize all baby things, like the baby’s sheets, blankets, changing pad covers, etc. I do not plan on washing all her clothes yet, as I’ve heard from many moms that a lot of the clothes, especially newborn sized ones, don’t end up getting worn. I plan on keeping the tags on majority of them until I’m ready for her to wear them, so I can always exchange it for a size up if need be!
5. Pack a hospital bag!
Stay tuned for next weeks post (2/3) on what I plan on packing in my hospital bag!
6. Register at the hospital
The whole point of this is so that you’re not in labor attempting to fill out all the paperwork needed. Or trying to have your spouse do it while he is flustered, too.
7. Register for any classes
Most hospitals offer birthing classes, so while you’re at your hospital registering and touring, ask about what they offer. You may also be interested in Lamaze classes, hypnobirthing classes, or even daddy boot camp classes for your spouse! (Clickable links will bring you straight to websites to find classes near you!)
8. Pick your pediatrician
The advice my OB/GYN gave me was to start with a list from my insurance company then go from there. I have asked around for peoples suggestions, next week at my appointment I will ask him for recommendations based on who I’ve narrowed it down to, then my husband and I will begin interviewing!
9. Complete your registry
After your baby shower (if you’re having one) you’re bound to have things left over – some of which you may need and some of which you may have just wanted. The time between your shower and your birth is a great time to cash in on that completion discount on your registry and stock up on any items that were not already purchased!
10. Get a baby book!
If this wasn’t on your registry, you’ll want to find a baby book you like before the baby is born. There are so many options these days, including digital ones, that you may be confused on which ones to pick! We are registered for Qeepsake which is a super cool digital baby book where they text you questions every day and you respond and can send back pictures, then when you’re ready – print a book! I do also plan on picking up a “traditional” baby book, too, but I feel like I need to go look at them in person first.
11. Finalize a birth plan
I don’t plan on getting too in depth with my birth plan because I’m a firm beliver in “You make a plan and G-d laughs,” however, there are things I know I definitely do and do not want! It is important to me that my husband, doctor, and nurses are all on the same page!
12. Buy things through your insurance!
Make sure you have ordered your breast pump – if you plan on breastfeeding – through insurance! It is usually free or significantly cheaper! Did you know that websites like AeroFlow also offer nursing bras, compression gear, and many other useful things you may need during or post pregnancy! Make sure to stock up on whatever you can for free, because no matter how much money you may have – free is always great!
13. Cord blood banking
Talk to your spouse and doctor and determine if this is something you want to do. You’ll want to look into your options sooner rather than later. This website has a lot of information and links to more information about CBB. Here is some more info on CBB from the ACOG.
14. Work leave policy!!!!!!
I’ve heard horror stories about women thinking they know their work leave policy or expecting it to be one thing, only to realize that it’s not what they thought. Make sure to contact your HR to find out how much time you get off, if it is paid or unpaid, what your insurance will be like, etc. You’ll want to know this with enough time to make appropriate arrangements.
- If you plan on signing your child up for day care, you may want to start looking around 4 months pregnant. From my understanding, many day care places are constantly on wait lists and if you need to go back to work right away you’ll want to make sure to secure your child’s spot.
- Prepare yourself with interview questions for childcare centers. You’ll definitely want to know little things like their child to teacher ratio and their sick policy!
- Also, if you already have any children at home, or any pets, you may want to think about what you will do with them when you go into labor. Don’t forget, you will be in the hospital overnight for 2 days or more. Are your children going to come with you to the hospital and picked up from there? Will they spend the night at a grandparents or friends house? Will you have someone dog sit for a few days or just have them go check on your pet at your house?
16. Thank yous!
This is TOTALLY up to you and not a necessity by any means, but I saw the sweetest little gesture from another mom and feel compelled to share. She made little “goody bags” for the nurses and doctors who helped her with delivery and postpartum. I’ve also seen this done as a basket you keep in your room with a note for them. Those nurses and doctors work so hard to ensure you and your baby are safe and healthy that at very least, you can give them a few snacks/waters/and a genuine thank you!
This thank you basket idea was found on Taylor and Gwendolyn Plus Three Blog
Individual bags like this are also great, but require a little extra effort.. I found these on Kinzies Kreations Blog
I sincerely hope this list has helped with any anxieties you may have about what needs to get done pre-baby. I know writing it all down helped me a lot! & Don’t forget…. NONE of this has to be done to make you a good mom or parent. Just love your sweet baby and that’s all that will matter at the end of the day!