When we found we were expecting our first child I got so excited about all the fun things that come along with that sweet bundle of joy. I was anxious to register and I spent hours every day browsing baby clothes, baby gear, and all things baby. I felt like I was being welcomed into this club... the mom club. But very quickly that pure excitement started to mix with an overwhelming feeling of nervousness.
My husband and I were young and the first of friends and siblings to have a baby. I turned to my mom for advice but she had an excellent point in telling me that things are so different now from when she had me. So I felt a little lost and needed a friend to turn to. Luckily I had a cousin who had a one year old. She stepped up to the plate and helped me get ready for baby.
So I'm going to try and help other new moms with this list of my top 10 ways to get ready for a new baby....
1. Be prepared for the hospital - Baby's are on their own schedules. My daughter arrived a week early and only a day after my doctor told me she wasn't going anywhere anytime soon. So at 1:00 in the morning I was online trying to find out if I was in labor, calling my doctor, and packing my hospital bag. You don't need that added stress. Pack early and have a plan...it could happen at any time.
2. Get your car seat checked - This was really important to me. I wanted to make sure it was installed correctly. Of course I made my appointment for a Monday and had my baby that Sunday. So I sent my dad to the police station with my car to get it checked. We had it in right but not tight enough. It's best to check!
3. Buy multiple sizes of diapers - My daughter never even wore a newborn size diaper. I had TONS of them and she came out so big that she jumped right into size 1's while in the hospital. I luckily had a few size 1's, but we quickly ran out.
4. Ask for help - Don't be shy asking for help those first few days or even weeks. It's such a magical time you don't want to be stressed. Enjoy the time with your baby and family. Let your mom and mother-in-law bask in this time as well. Plus it will give you some extra time to sleep.
5. Have a feeding backup plan - I had a lot of trouble with breastfeeding, and while that was my number one choice I had to supplement with formula. If I didn't have some on hand my first day home would have been soooo stressful as my daughter was not getting enough milk and I only found that out after lots of screaming.
6. Have a clean house - You will become a freak about things being clean. You will worry about germs and things on the floor. Clean the house before you have the baby and use a natural cleaner. You won't have time to pick up a broom the first few weeks. It feels so much more relaxing to be in a tidy house while resting with your new bundle!
7. Have a variety of "things" - By things I mean swings, bouncy seats, baby carriers... you never know what your baby will like or not like. So by being able to move them around you may be able to give your arms a break. I got two bouncy seats only to find out that she hated them! Luckily we also had a swing and she loved that!
8. Do your research... but not too much - The internet is your best and worst friend. You can learn a lot but you can also freak yourself out. Read what's important and skip the "personal experiences." Everyone's experiences are different.
9. Freeze some meals - Take out can get expensive... but cooking will not be a priority. Have a few easy meals all set to go in the freezer.
10. ENJOY - Seriously, don't sweat the small stuff. Theses tiny babies are only tiny for a short amount of time. All the planning in the world will never prepare you for the amazing journey you will find yourself on. There is nothing like those first days home with someone so new that you feel like you've known your whole life.
Oh... and if I had to add an 11... take tons of pictures. They change so fast!!
So that would be my list of things to keep in mind. But the bottom line is that if you have love for your child you have it all and you will be just fine. Trust your instincts and enjoy the ride!
Seventh Generation has great all natural products to get you started off right. From cleaning products to diapers and wipes. All natural is the best way to go when dealing with baby's sensitive skin.