THINGS YOU’LL NEED TO PREP FOR YOUR BABY
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Congratulations! You’re having a baby! In the months that you stroke your belly and beam with excitement, you’ll also probably be busy reading up on what to do when Baby comes out, or trying to figure out what you need to get in advance. The baby industry is saturated with a gazillion items touted as “must-haves”, but are they really? You can give a sigh of relief to know that babies aren’t actually very complicated and they need only a handful of things. But at the same time you also don’t want to miss out some things that can come in really handy before and after they pop out! Here’s an easy guide to prepping for your little sweetheart’s arrival!
Setting up the nursery
At about 20 weeks it should be fairly easy to tell the gender of your baby, and some parents immediately go crazy decking the whole room out in pink or blue. (By the way, what’s wrong with non-gender-stereotypical colours like yellow, purple or turquoise?)
Aside from aesthetics though, when it comes to the big stuff in the nursery, there’s really no rush to get an all-options diaper changing station when for now you can even change your baby on the bed, and you don’t need one of those grows-with-your-child beds yet. Babies just need somewhere to sleep that’s safe so you avoid risking SIDS (Sudden Infant Death Syndrome). For young infants it’s safest if they sleep on their back and don’t sleep with things like stuffed toys or extra blankies that could potentially block their airways.
Traditionally it might seem like babies sleep in cribs, but you can also use a bassinet, moses basket, cradle, travel bed or baby hammock. If you want baby closer to you, then a co-sleeper to place in or next to your bed would be perfect to ensure your baby has his own space next to you. And if budget is an issue, go with a cardboard box. No kidding! Finnish babies come with their own box when they leave the hospital – and Finland has one of the world’s lowest infant mortality rates, so you can be sure they know what they’re doing!
Packing the hospital bag
It might seem a long way off, but it’s always better to be well-prepared especially when your baby isn’t exactly going to announce his arrival in advance! Because staying in a hospital isn’t exactly like staying in a hotel with room service, be sure you have some of these things:
- Snacks – You never know when you’re going to be overcome with hunger, especially after doing some heavy-duty pushing perhaps? Hospital meals are far between and their cafes never have the right snacks you want, so make sure you pack a good stash for the duration of your stay.
- Toiletries – You might not be able to take a shower just after birth, but perhaps the next day or so you might be yearning to feel a little bit fresher. That first shower after birth can be heavenly! So pack some nice scented treats for that all-important refresher.
- Entertainment – Yes you’re supposed to be sleeping while your newborn sleeps, but you also need something to while the time you’re in hospital when there isn’t a frenzy of family and friends visiting. Magazines, books, a tablet, your phone – make sure you pack a charger with a cable that’s long enough (we recommend 3 metres!) – these can keep you sufficiently occupied so you don’t go mad from boredom.
- Comfy stuff – Slippers, dressing gown, lip balm, socks, old comfy T-shirts. It’s important you feel as comfortable as you can!
- Nursing gear – It might seem overwhelming when they shove you your baby and make you start breastfeeding immediately, but you’ll soon get used to all the different eyes on you to make sure you’re doing it right. To get comfy in this crazy new breastfeeding routine, it’s best to have the right stuff already in place, like the right nursing bra, nursing top, and a breastfeeding pillow that will suddenly become the most important thing to you (besides your baby!).
Easing your baby into their new life
It’s a scary time for any first-time parents, but remember, it’s also pretty scary being a first-time baby! Your baby has to adjust to a completely new environment that just happens to be vastly different from the one he’s known for the last few months. To ease your baby as he makes this transition, it’s worth getting the Bjingles Baby Heart Rate Monitor.
Not only can you use it while pregnant to listen in on how your baby is doing, but you can record your heartbeat and your womb sounds to playback for your newborn. You can also play them the same jingles they heard when you played it for them when they were still inside! Familiar music and sounds can help your baby feel more at home in his new home.
As you start prepping to welcome your new bundle of joy, don’t forget to take time to enjoy your pregnancy while it lasts. Listen to your little one kick and move with the Bjingles Baby Heart Rate Monitor; you won’t get to hear this anymore once he’s out (thankfully you can record it)!