I just hit 23 weeks pregnant! Since this is my third baby I'm feeling a little more seasoned and more prepared for the process of bringing a new little one into our home. Here is my Top Ten Tips Before Baby Comes Home.
The number one must is to have a sanitized home for baby to come home to. Germs are everywhere and even when it looks clean we all know it probably isn't. We have a weekly routine in our home of disinfecting and sanitizing every room top to bottom once a week. My weapon of choice Lysol Dual Action Disinfecting Wipes. They are safe to use everywhere and have an awesome scrubbing side and a soft side to wipe up. My nine year old usually gets this job even if he just wipes an area once I know it is being disinfected from everyday germs. Making this a priority weekly gives me peace of mind that we are doing all we can to have a sanitized home for our precious baby and us.
Have all baby's bedding, blankets, clothes, burp cloths washed, dried and ready to go. I have a drawer dedicated to my baby's linens, burp cloths etc. I also hand all of baby's clothing/sleepers according to the size. I use a detergent that is made especially for sensitive skin and is dye free to wash all of baby's things. The last month before baby arrives I will solely switch this detergent for everyone's washed items. This helps keep any allergic reactions from a harsh detergent from baby especially since we all plan on cuddling and feeding our little one often.
Have all baby equipment assembled and ready for use. Crib, bassinet, pack & Play, swing, sling and stroller. As I get these items I set them up. Since this is my third I do have a few hand me downs from my two yr old. I have them set up in the nursery and have sanitized them. The crib is set up with just a crib sheet any other linens or items I plan to use are washed dried and wont get set up until the last few weeks.
It's estimated 80% of parents use there car seat wrong. I take my car seat and base to the fire station a month or so before my due date, they install it for me free of charge. Remember if you don't have background on a used car seat its best not to use and buy a new one. Car seat manufacturers allow aprox. 10 years safety on their car seats.
Bottles, pacifiers, Breast Pump, Formula
Have your bottles and pacifiers ready and sanitized. Are you breast feeding or formula feeding? Either way you will need to have a plan. Formula feeders I would have a few cans of your preferred brand on hand. Not to many as your baby may need to be put on a special formula. I have solely breastfed my children. I do use a breast pump and would highly recommend any breast feeding mother have a good one. Even though I am a stay at home mom and can breast feed without any bottles it helps enormously to be able to have someone else bottle feed my child. Or to bottle feed them in a very public place. Although I will throw a blanket over my shoulder and proudly feed my child at any given moment :).
Diapers & Wipes
Diapers and wipes oh my! I don't even want to think about the amount of diapers I have changed and filled our planet with. It's a scary thought but with one child in diapers I am currently changing about 8-10 diapers a day. Not to mention the amount of wipes we go through. I stock up on diapers when I find a "hot deal". With this child I am going (as my family thinks) old school. We are cloth diapering. It's definitely not for everyone either way start stalking up asap. If you buy them when they are at a low price you can slowly build a stockpile. My motto is you will never have too many diapers or wipes. I start out by buying at least 5 huge boxes in each size 1-5. I do get a small pack of preemie diapers at least for the first week my babies have all been 6lbs and change and can do the preemie size for a week or two.
Start gathering some fool proof freezer meals. Make 2-3 weeks worth of meals you can safely store in the freezer that can be thawed and heated with no prep needed. I start this a month in advance!
Double recipes so that half gets stored for a future meal
Use a food saver to store meals. Prevent freezer burn
Here's my start: lasagna, casseroles galore, quiche, meatloaf, chicken bake. I also stock up on frozen pizzas, chicken nuggets, etc.
The most important items are definitely for you not your baby. Pack as if you are going to stay in a hotel for 1-2 nights and want to be super warm and comfy the entire time. Remember hospitals are going to have to necessities, maybe not your favorite brand but if you forget your lotion they have a sample bottle. :) My bag consists of: Hair ties, makeup/makeup remover, a small bag of mini toiletries, 2 comfy pants and 2 nursing style tops (that can also double as pajamas), comfy velour style jacket and pants (to leave in), 2-3 pair of undies (you never know ;)), nursing bra, cute gripped socks to walk around the room in, camera (charged), video camera, cash/change (vending machine and food). For the baby: 2 going home options, 2 different style pacifiers, baby nail file, going home blanky, burp cloth and car seat. The hospital will have diapers, wipes, formula, etc to start out with and to send you home with use there's and take home what ever they leave in the bassinet for you. Its all meant for you to use and your paying for it.
Keep a Tidy Home
Keep up with the dishes, laundry, bathroom, pets baths, etc. You don't want to come home to chores because you were not keeping a tidy home. Believe me the last thing you will want to do is chores once baby arrives. And don't forget the visitors that may want to stop by.
A couple of my must haves:
I know with all the tasks you have to get accomplished before baby arrives it seems as though there is no rest in your future. I can safely say that if you feel the need to rest its best you take your own ques and prop those swollen feet up and keep yourself sane. Your number one responsibility right now is keeping you and that precious baby comfy.
“I wrote this blog post while participating in the TwitterMoms and Lysol® Wee Wisdom blogging program, making me eligible to get a $50 gift card. For more information on how you can participate, click here.”