(Chelsea is a guest blogger from Moments A Day.)
As a mother of three, I have done my share of preparing for babies! Here are my five essential tips to get ready for your bundle of joy.
1. Make a list of baby gear and purchase it slowly over time
Ask friends for recommendations on favourite products and research reviews online to make a wish list early on in your pregnancy. If you have a list prepared, you can wait for sales and coupons to make your dollar stretch even farther. Buying a few items at a time instead of everything at once also puts less strain on your monthly budget.
2. Mentally prepare each family member
Talk with your spouse about your hopes, expectations, fears and any other feelings you may experience, and invite them to do the same. Read books and email favourite articles to each other. Open communication and a love of learning will go a long way in helping you feel mentally prepared for a new baby in your life, and will contribute to a unified relationship with your partner as well.
If you have other children, be sure to start the conversation about having a new baby with them as well. There are lots of wonderful storybooks available (find a list of my favourites here) and you can also do things like play with baby dolls, plan playdates with families who recently had a baby, and get your child involved in preparing the baby’s bed or toys. There are more great ideas in this post.
3. Plan ahead for meals after bub is born
Eating healthy meals is so important after giving birth to keep your energy up, but they are not always easy to prepare when you have a new baby! Freezing meals ahead of time is one option. You can also save up to order take out, or ask a few friends to deliver meals in the weeks after bub is born. If you want to send a “new mama wish list” with ideas for practical support to friends and relatives who want to help you after delivery, check out this list for more ideas.
4. Save up to hire someone to clean your house!
Tidying the bedrooms and scrubbing bathtubs just doesn’t make the priority list when you have a new baby to feed, cuddle, and rock to sleep… but clutter and grime are no fun. Knowing we had funds to hire someone to clean our house at least a few times after baby was born was a huge relief. I just loved knowing I had someone coming to help – it took stress off me during the week leading up to the cleaning, and it was awesome having a clean house afterwards.
5. Enjoy some nights out!
None of my babies have slept through the night early on, so I really made the most of nights out during the months leading up to my due date. It was great to get out and spend some time with my husband before a new baby came into the equation. It benefited our marriage and helped pass the time during those last few weeks of waiting for labour to begin!
For more tips on pregnancy and life with a new baby, check out my blog.