10 ESSENTIAL THINGS TO DO BEFORE YOUR BABY ARRIVES
Preparing for your baby’s arrival can be overwhelming.
Not only are you preparing the house, but there are also many things that need to be done before your little one arrives.
There are certain legalities that must be taken care of, important health issues that should be addressed, financial matters that need attention, and more.
The following checklist is designed to ensure everything is in order before the new bundle of joy arrives:
I was excited to welcome my bundle of joy but it was also nerve-racking at the same time.
Being prepared is key and you’ll need to be prepared both mentally and physically.
You’ll need your baby essentials sorted out as well as your postpartum care kits.
This post covers all the vital things you should do before your baby arrives.
Before anything else, you need to prepare yourself mentally for the birth itself.
Childbirth is most definitely not easy and painless, I’m sure you know it’s not, however being mentally prepared will help you stay ready for the process to welcome your little one into the world.
You’ve got this mama…
So, be sure to take some notes or save this page to your favorites, and let’s get started.
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THINGS TO DO BEFORE YOUR BABY COMES
As soon as you enter the 32nd week of your pregnancy, you should start preparing for the arrival of your baby. A good rule of thumb, however, is to try as much as you can to ensure that you are prepared at least a week or two before your due date.
1. DECLUTTER AND DEEP CLEAN
Your first priority should be to deep clean the house. The last thing you want is for baby to come home to a dirty, dusty or smoky environment that could lead to health issues.
If you have spare time before baby arrives, focus on decluttering and organizing your stuff—this way your space will be clean, uncluttered and more functional after the little one comes along!
Chances are you will have your hands so full that cleaning will probably be the last thing on your mind.
Get rid of the things that you don’t use and need. You can do this one room at a time to avoid being overwhelmed.
A Sample list of what you can focus on includes :
- Declutter your pantry, kitchen, and wardrobes.
- Clean the windows.
- Carpet and rug cleaning
- Dust surfaces
- Clean floors
- Deep clean bathrooms
- Make sure that all electrical outlets are protected with outlet covers and you know where they are located in your house—especially near the crib, changing table, glider/rocking chair and any other place where baby will spend a significant amount of time.
- If you have a wood-burning fireplace or stove, make sure that it is completely clean before bringing baby home. The last thing anyone wants to deal with during the first few weeks of parenthood is an infant who gets sick from secondhand smoke in their environment!
- Remove all plants and flowers that may be toxic in your house and keep them out of reach from the little one when he/she arrives- Easter lilies, etc.
Don’t forget to ask for help if and when you do need it. I know it’s not easy doing everything while hurling around a big bump with possibly swollen ankles.
2.MEAL PREP AND MEAL FREEZE
Get cooking mama.
When your baby arrives you really don’t want to spend the first few days cooking.
Meal preparation is important even before the baby arrives.
Not only will this ensure that you have healthier options available, it can also save you money.
Prepare meals in advance and freeze them so they’re ready to go when you need them.
The last thing you want to do is to start stressing about what to make for dinner after the baby arrives.
Spend a week or two before your baby comes batch cooking and freezing, and also meal prepping raw ingredients to freeze for each meal.
You could also consider using a meal delivery service like freshly.
3.GET YOUR HOSPITAL BAG READY
It’s important to have your hospital bag ready so you can focus on being completely prepared for when the baby comes.
The last thing you want when your contractions are coming every minute is to be running around completing errands or gathering everything together.
Not only does this include all of your essentials, but it also includes any necessary documentation that needs to go with you.
Your birth plan is very important, and it’s recommended that you take a copy with you in case there happens to be an emergency situation where the hospital cannot find your original.
Not sure what you need in your hospital bag? here is a comprehensive post that will help; Hospital bag checklist; the essentials
Don’t forget to charge all your electronics for the hospital, so you are able to capture the beautiful moment when you welcome your little one.
4.CREATE A POSTPARTUM CARE PLAN
During this time, not only are you dealing with the stress of having given birth, but caring for an infant at the same time is very tiring.
This will leave you less time to care for your needs.
Plan ahead so that there’s no added stress of worrying about meals, cleaning the house, and managing finances at this time.
It also helps to have a family member or friend come over to help out to give you some extra rest during this period.
Postpartum depression affects around 80% of women after giving birth, resulting in symptoms such as anxiety, sadness, crying spells, loss of appetite or overeating along with other symptoms.
Be aware of the symptoms so that you can seek help if necessary.
Will you be breastfeeding your baby or if you will be giving your baby formula.
If breastfeeding is not an option for you, this is a good time to research what kind of formula you should feed your baby and where to buy it.
Although having a meal plan is important, because taking care of yourself during this time must be part of your postpartum recovery plan.
The truth is, what you eat can affect your ability to recover from childbirth or even affect how well nursing goes for both you and your little one .
Aim for foods that are high in protein, fats (including omega 3 fatty acids) and other nutrients (such as folic acid) and nutrient rich foods so that you have the energy to recover properly.
Breastfeeding was really overwhelming at first for me because first of all, i had no clue what i was doing, coupled with my baby wanting to feed constantly.
It’s best if you feel a little bit prepared for this to make the process a little less stressful.
5.PUT TOGETHER A POSTPARTUM CARE KIT
Postpartum can be a very exhausting period. Half the time after childbirth i didn’t understand what was going on in my body, having a postpartum kit with the essentials will help your body heal faster and better.
A few Postpartum care kit essentials: –
- Maxi pads (at least 2 weeks supply) –
- Change of clothes (when you shower or go to the washroom,
- -Lavender essential oil-very calming and great for healing scars post cesarean section.
- Muslin cloth full of lavender oil for a cool compress on your eyes when you get tired from the lack of sleep from breastfeeding or just being up with an infant all night. You can also have it apply it to the area around your tummy where there is tenderness and help heal more quickly if you’re experiencing any pain from an episiotomy. –
- Healing balm (a barrier cream that will help prevent infection plus heal any open areas on your body. i used one made with coconut oil, shea butter and lavender essential oil
- Lansinoh Cream for breastfeeding to soothe cracked nipples –
- Nipple shields if breastfeeding has become a problem
- Pillows, blankets, toiletries and magazines for yourself so you can rest up while the baby is being taken care of by someone else.
This gives you some time to take a break from being a mom and taking care of your baby.
6.STOCK UP ON GROCERIES AND ESSENTIALS
Take out time to stock up on groceries, toiletries, and other essentials that you will need.
Have a good supply of your favorite snacks, drinks, toiletries, and home essentials.
7.PUT TOGETHER YOUR NEWBORN ESSENTIALS AND WASH BABY GARMENTS
If you have no idea what your baby really needs or you are unsure if you have all your little one needs, check out this article:
I chose to wash my baby’s clothes before my little one arrived because a baby’s skin is really delicate and needed to ensure that all the fabric he will be coming in contact with was clean.
Rearrange the nursery and make sure everything has a place because you won’t get much of a chance to organize after the baby is born.
8. FIGURE OUT HOW THE BABY GEARS WORK INSTALL THE BABY’S CAR SEAT
This is the time to install the baby car seat as you will not be allowed to leave the hospital without the car seat installed.
Also take some time to together all other gears for your baby like a stroller, rocker/swing, and bouncer.
It is so important not to leave this task for later because between a crying baby and being sleep deprived you may not be able to think clearly.
So it is best to get familiar with how the car seat, stroller, and other baby gear works.
Car seats and strollers make it a lot easier to go out and about with your baby. You may want to install the car seat yourself, but if you’re not confident enough, it would be best to have someone help you figure out how all the parts fit together properly before taking your baby home from the hospital.
All these would be harder to set up when there is a crying baby right beside you.
9. PRE-REGISTER AT YOUR BIRTHING HOSPITAL
This was a total time saver for me on the day i went into labor. I was immediately taken to my birthing room because i had pre-registered and filled out the initial paperwork.
Find out from your birthing hospital if you can pre-register.
Try engaging in exercises a few days a week. You could try out prenatal yoga.
Exercise is essential in preparing your body for birth.
Hopefully, the checklist helps you streamline and focus on the most important things you need to do before your baby comes.
While waiting for your little one, don’t forget to enjoy this time.
Take time for self-care as much as you can and make time to do some fun stuff before you have to spend the whole time caring for a baby.
Before your Little one Arrives, here are A few Fun things to do
- Go see a movie
- Get your hair and nails done
- Get a bump box and pamper yourself
- Binge-watch tv-shows
- Spend quality time with your significant other; have a meal out.
- Catch up with friends
- Get as much sleep as you can.
I remember being told a lot when i was pregnant to sleep as much as i could, right now I’ve had a lot of days where wish i could go back to before childbirth and sleep just a little bit more.
Remember to be kind to yourself and take one day at a time.
The arrival of your baby is an exciting time for you and those around you, but it can also be a bit overwhelming.
You may feel like there’s no end in sight to the tasks that need done before they arrive!
This checklist should help put things into perspective and give you some guidance as you prepare for your little one.
If you have more any thing you do before you baby is born, let us know by leaving a comment below.
We would love to hear from you.