I have just under four months until her expected arrival and I'm doing everything I can to make sure my house, my body, and my mind are ready for her arrival. If you're also expecting, here's 15 different things you should do before your little one enters the world.
1. Have a baby shower - While this may be the most obvious item on my list, it should definitely be on the top of a new mama's list of things to do and that's why it's number one on my list as well! Having a baby shower means you should probably set up a registry, send out invitations, and plan a little shindig for your close friends and family to celebrate the baby that's on it's way! Be sure to include items that you'll need on your registry and make your shower fun and unique so everyone has a good time!
2. Set up baby's nursery - From putting the crib together, to choosing the perfect wall decor, making sure your little one's room is perfect is an important part of feeling prepared for the baby's arrival. We've decided to decorate our little girl's room with mermaids and we're so excited each time we add decor in her room and eagerly awaiting the bigger items like her wardrobe, changing table, glider, etc... Budgeting for these items and spending a little bit monthly makes for a wiser way to spend your cash on baby, rather than stressing and spending a ton all at once just before baby comes!
3. Deep clean, organize, & nest, nest, nest - While you will likely feel the innate need to nest before delivery, you may as well spread out the cleaning duties some! Wash baby's clothes in a gentle detergent, put everything in it's place all through out the home, change out items like air filters, and simply make sure your things are in order. Whether you're 4 months from delivery or 4 days, it'll be nice knowing your place is baby ready and spic & span!
4. Stock up on the baby essentials - From diapers (cloth or disposable) to bundles of onesies, you'll want a TON of everything for your little one. Grab your cash and hit resale stores like Once Upon a Child or Salvation Army to find used items on a budget, while also using apps like Cartwheel or Ibotta to save on diapers! Take the time through out your pregnancy to stock up on all of the essentials your baby will need.
5. Go on dates with your other half and your besties - Take the time to spoil yourself, in a sense. Once baby is here you'll spend a majority of your time catering to cries and singing lullabies, so before baby comes go out on the town with your honey and book a girls day out with some of your favorite gal pals! It's important to stock up on adult time, before you know it you're life will be full of fun (and rewarding) baby talk!
6. Pamper yourself & your partner - Another thing to do to spoil yourself (and your other half) is making sure you both are content. Spend time getting massages with your darling and maybe even take the time to get a pedicure the week your baby is expected to arrive. You don't necessarily need to spend the big bucks all pregnancy long, but be sure you and your partner are both relaxed before the arrival of your baby, it'll be a while before you'll have the chance again so really embrace it.
7. Shop for Postpartum Clothing - Making sure your comfortable after you have your baby is so important. With hormones surging, your mothering instincts on overdrive, and a lack of sleep, the last thing you'll feel like doing is trying on everything in your closet to find just one item that kind of fits. Take the time to find loose fitting tops, cozy leggings, nursing gowns, etc. You'll thank yourself later.
8. Maternity Photos - Documenting your pregnancy with a professional photographer is a great way to make sure you always have the chance to look back on the precious memories. I also suggest asking your photographer if they offer bundle packages for maternity and newborn photos, it couldn't hurt and if you love their work you know it'll be worth whatever price they offer!
9. Freezer Meals - Instead of coming home from the hospital and being unsure of what to cook, start batch preparing freezer meals a week or two before your baby's delivery. With recipes all over pinterest, you're bound to find a handful of delicious concoctions you can make!
10. Attend classes at your hospital - With classes like "Daddy Boot Camp", "Breastfeeding 101", and a "Couple's Birthing Class", it's important that you and your partner are prepared for the big arrival of your itty, bitty baby. Check out the many classes your hospital has to offer and sign up for any that suit your fancy!
11. Find a pediatrician - While this doesn't necessarily have to be done before you deliver, it may be wise. Finding the perfect person to help you take care of your little one and ensure their health is a super important part of being a mama. Ask your friends that are already mothers where they take their kids and if they LOVE their pediatrician! Be sure not to settle for some lame doctor appointed by the hospital - find one that your kids will adore and your babe will likely end up being a lifelong patient.
12. Contact your insurance - You'll obviously want to inform your insurance company that you're having a baby and the date your expecting. While filling them in on the big news, you should ask if they provide coverage for breast pumps, because most insurances will pay for the fancy pumps that cost a pretty penny in stores! It doesn't hurt to ask and it'll only take a few minutes to find out.
13. Pack a hospital bag - Remember the vital things like a fully charged camera battery, comfortable clothing for you post delivery, your baby's going home outfit, and anything else you consider super important.
14. Stock up on sanitizer - With so many people coming in and out of your hospital room and visiting your home after you have your baby, you'll want to make sure that everyone's hands are clean! Stock up on cheap bottles of hand sanitizer and let everyone know not to touch her without making their hands are clean.
15. Set times with family and friends to visit you and baby, post delivery - Whether family is visiting from out of town or friends are just dropping by, letting them know that you and baby are trying to live on a "schedule" can help keep things less chaotic with the addition adjusting to a whole new world.
While this list contains fifteen different ways to prepare for baby, I'm certain I won't be fully prepared for everything... it's just the way life works. Do you have tips or tidbits to add to this list? I'd love to hear your best piece of advice for mamas preparing for baby in the comments below!