At the beginning of your pregnancy, nine months may seem like an awfully long while. You are bound to have more than enough time to get things in order for your delivery and your baby. Obviously, the last few weeks before the baby is born are usually the most hectic. All at once, reality hits and you realize that your list of things to do is way too long. Before panic sets it, take a breather and work your way down our handy checklist of the 7 must-haves before your baby arrives…
1. Stock up on food – As the time for your delivery approaches, start stocking up your freezer with pre-portioned meals and easy snacks such as lasagnas, baked dishes and pies. Stock your pantry with staples such as rice, noodles, soups and tinned foods as well. When you return with your baby from the hospital, the last thing you and your partner need to worry about is getting a meal on the table.
2. Car Seat – So you have had your baby and you are ready to leave hospital and start the rest of your life as parents. Wait just a minute though – if you haven’t bought a car seat for your baby as yet, your partner may have some unnecessary last minute running around to do. Prevent this from happening by purchasing the proper infant car seat at least a few weeks before your due date. Make sure that it comes with all the safety features and if necessary practice setting it up in your car before D-day.
3. Nursery Stuff –Enlist the help of another mummy friend and ask her what she really needed when she brought her baby back home. Chances are all of the following will figure on her list – a bassinet or crib, a changing table, and a dresser for baby clothes and toiletries. A comfortable chair to feed the baby in and a baby monitor will also help.
4. Breast Pump – Whether you plan to breast feed exclusively or not, a breast pump will come in handy when you need a little “me” time sans the little one. Invest in a good quality pump that comes with extra bottles. Remember this piece of equipment should ideally see you through the first year so this is not the time to count pennies and buy a cheaper model.
5. Baby Goodies – Babies need surprisingly little stuff but what they do need they go through in no time at all! For example, make sure your nursery is well stocked with baby shampoo, baby powder and cream, baby towels, blankets for swaddling, and baby wipes and diapers bought in bulk. A stylish and spacious diaper bag is also a Godsend when you have to move around with your little bundle.
6. Stroller – Pages and pages are written up on the pros and cons of one stroller model over the other. What stroller you ultimately choose should depend on where you live, how often you will use it, whether you need a double buggy for a twin or an elder sibling and how much storage space you require.
7. Clothes – Don’t go out and splurge on baby clothes even before your due date. Clothes are usually the most gifted item from friends and family and the sad truth of the matter is that babies outgrow clothes at a startling rate. Save time and money by investing in some key wardrobe essentials such as onesies, sleeper suits, newborn socks, rompers, sun hats if it’s warm where you are or woolens and gloves if the weather is cold.
It’s tough not to go crazy when shopping for your baby – everything is just so unbelievably cute but it’s not an excuse to go overboard! Your baby will be more than happy even without that adorable mobile over his crib or the lovely decal for his nursery wall.