Going into motherhood with a to-do list is far from relaxing. Who can properly snuggle and bond with baby, knowing that there's a mountain of chores waiting to be done? For this reason, it is ideal that all new mamas attempt to knock out to-do lists before the little one arrives.
While the list of things to get done before your little mini-me's arrival will likely have plenty of actual chores on it, you definitely shouldn't forget to add in the fun stuff. Self care should be a chore too! It's important for this balance of mind, soul, and body to stay happy and feeling active. After all, how long after baby arrives will you have to wait before you can go out with friends again? This is one of those things that should most certainly make it onto your list.
Not sure what else to add? Not to worry! We've made a list of 20 things you must do before baby is due. Do your best to get through it before you go into labor, and you'll be starting off motherhood with a fresh slate.
#1: Go on a "Babymoon"
If this is your first baby, it's important to recognize the fact that these weeks before baby arrives are the last you and your partner will have as just a couple. As soon as your little one makes their appearance, you will be a family unit, and from then on that little guy or girl will be around all the time.
Take advantage of your last few weeks by going on a "babymoon"—that is, a little vacation with your partner in order to reconnect and recharge before baby comes.
It can be an exotic getaway or as simple as a day trip to a new place to explore. You will love this time spent apart from your normal everyday.
#2: Pack a Hospital Bag
Obviously, you'll want certain things on hand when you're spending a night or two in the hospital. Be sure to pack your hospital bag with plenty of time to spare! Read more on how to pack your hospital bag like a pro here.
#3: Buy Breastfeeding Supplies and Create your Station
Babies have to eat. Fortunately, you have all of the important things needed to feed your little one. That said, there are some things that do make the process a lot easier. These include easy to nurse in tee shirts and hoodies, nursing bras or bandeaus, pillows, burp towels, water bottle, nipple cream, breast pads, and if needed, a high quality breast pump.
Create your nursing station in your home that includes some of these essentials and other comfy cozy necessities so you have a peaceful, quaint, designated place to start the journey of feeding your baby.
#4: Get a Manicure
Let's face it, "me time" goes out the window when you're caring for a newborn. Therefore, it's important to get in some pampering while you still can. Head to the beauty shop for a manicure, a pedicure, or a new hairstyle to treat yourself. Many modern nail salons offer organic nail polish and organic nail services. Bring your own non toxic mommy approved polish if your salon doesn't offer these options.
#5: Do Some Yoga
Speaking of "me time", another great way to relax and recharge is doing a bit of pre natal yoga in the mornings. As an added benefit, yoga can help baby move into the right position, plus keep you limber and in shape for the delivery of your son or daughter. Ask your doctor what's right for you when implementing exercise.
#6: Stock Up on Diapers
Will you go disposable or cloth? Diapers are another crucial item to have on hand when a baby is in the picture. Be sure to stock up, and buy more than you think you'll need.
If you plan to practice elimination communication in hopes of being diaper free, read up and get the needed tools to begin practicing EC here.
#7: Eat at a Nice Restaurant
There are some restaurants that aren't exactly kid-friendly, or a little fancy that you would love to just share with your partner. Because of this, it'll likely be quite some time before you get to enjoy the food, service, and attention at a fine dining establishment after the birth of your child. Make sure to go now while you still can.
#8: Install a Car Seat
Baby is going to need to ride home, and you are going to want that ride to be as safe as possible. Install your child's car seat as soon as possible in order to ensure you are well-prepared. This is a must.
#9: Wash Baby Clothes
All of those tiny onesies and little-bitty socks have to be washed before you can put them on baby's sensitive skin. Make sure they get thrown in the washer before it's time for baby to arrive.
#10: Learn to Baby Wear
Wearing your baby is an incredible thing. It gives you the ability to snuggle your child while still getting things done with your hands.
Learn how to baby wear before yours actually arrives. This will definitely be helpful in the weeks to come. Find out about babywearing and breastfeeding here.
Take this opportunity before baby arrives to shop and find your favorite colored babywearing wraps.
#11: Go Out with the Girls
It's no secret that keeping up with friends becomes a bit more difficult in the first few weeks of baby's life. Since you may not be able to go out quite as often after giving birth, use this time beforehand to go out with your girlfriends a few times.
#12: Hire a Housecleaner and start using Grocery Delivery
Coming home to a clean house after having a baby is priceless. Unfortunately, sometimes you just aren't in the mood for a deep-cleaning session. Instead of forcing yourself to do the dirty work, hire a cleaner to come in and do it for you. This is one splurge you definitely won't regret.
Sign up for grocery delivery like PrimeNow, Amazon Fresh, or Instacart so when baby comes and you are busy (as always), you won't have to leave the house. Groceries delivered...you can even get cooked premade meals!
If you aren't ready for the housekeeper or grocery delivery be sure to stock up your pantry and tackle house chores one by one each day.
#13: Read a Book or Watch your Favorite Movie
While you will probably do a lot of sitting during the first month or two after your baby comes into the world, you will probably be too focused on learning to nurse to actually read a book or pay attention to a good movie. If there is a book you've been dying to read or a Netflix show you've been trying to catch up on, make sure to do it now.
#14: Have a Cooking Party
A freezer full of premade meals will be a wonderful postpartum gift to yourself. In order to make the cooking process more fun, consider having a cooking party with a few friends.
#15: Go to a Concert or Play
Treat yourself to a live show. This is a good way to relax or let loose, hang out with a friend or your partner, and take your mind off the huge life change coming your way. Just make sure the venue you choose has comfy seats and an easily accessible restroom.
#16: Catch Up on Sleep
We've all heard the advice, “Sleep when the baby sleeps.” Unfortunately, baby doesn't always do much sleeping, or at least not at convenient times. Now is your chance to sleep, so get as much as you can. Cherish it. Love it. Live it as much as you can.
#17: Purge Excess Stuff
An organized home is much easier to keep clean. Since you will have your plate full caring for an infant, it's a good idea to make your housecleaning chores as simple as possible.
This can be done with a good purging and reorganization of your home. Donate clothes and items you have not worn for months or years. Get rid of the old...and come into the new.
#18: Go to the Beach or the Mountains
Going outdoors with your baby is not so difficult, but wanting to visit your favorite beach or mountain spot may not be as accessible once baby arrives. Pack a small bag, get your walking shoes or sandals on, and spend a totally serene, peaceful, and nature lovin' day with yourself, partner, or friends. Sun is good for the soul and a little hike or toes walking in the sand will leave you relaxed and recharged. This also leaves last chance with belly photo opportunities to add to your camera roll.
#19: Reconnect with Your Mom or Family Members
Now that you are becoming a mother, you can bet you are going to have a lot of questions for your own mother, as well as a few apologies to make. If you are lucky to have your mother near you then why not take this time before the little one gets here to reconnect or deepen your bond with her and make your relationship stronger as you begin your own journey of motherhood? This is a great time to grow the bond, or rebond, with your mom or other family members.
#20: Mentally Prepare
Having a baby is a huge deal. It is both exciting and a little bit scary. Be sure you take some time during your last weeks of pregnancy to mentally prepare for what's ahead. This time to yourself is ideal for going over anything you may have forgotten. This will help you feel more relaxed as you head into this new chapter of your life.
By checking these tasks off your list, you are sure to feel more prepared whenever baby does decide to make their debut. Of course, if you do forget some (very likely), there is no reason to worry, as this is only a general guideline. Edit the list to suit your needs; just make sure that the final weeks of your pregnancy are filled with joy, excitement, and happy memories.
Keep going mama! Almost there!
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