Feather your nest
Have you been hit with the urge to nest? Michelle Denholm explains how to channel that energy into getting everything ready for baby.
Being a first-time mum can be scary. So much new information, lots of different body changes, and those little fears about how life is going to change, and how you will cope when your baby finally arrives. But there is one thing in your control, and that's getting your nest organised! You will be amazed at how these things are often overlooked, but the more organised you are at home, the more opportunity there is for stress-free bonding with baby.
Before you get started…
- Book antenatal classes early so that you can get a spot. Classes usually start when you're around seven months pregnant.
- Book your hired carseat early.
- Practice living on one income for three months before baby is born. This will help to save money and get used to one income.
- Clear as much debt as possible during the course of your pregnancy, such as credit cards and hire purchases.
- Start stockpiling items in your weekly shop, such as disposable nappies, baby wipes, breast pads, washing powder, etc.
- Set up an email, so that all your partner or friend has to do after the birth is fill in the blanks and press "send".
- One week before your due date, have a pedicure, get your hair cut, and splurge on a facial, so you're looking fabulous when your new addition arrives!
- Clear out the nursery so that only the cot, change table, clothes hamper, rubbish bin, toy box, and dressing table are in there.
- Get rid of as much clutter as you can.
- Depending on where you intend to do those late night and early morning feeds, consider adding a single bed or comfortable chair and side lamp to baby's room as well.
- Brighten things up! Splash some colour around, ensure the skirting boards and windowsills are clean, and put up new curtains to make the room feel snug.
- Launder all of baby's clothes, bedding, and soft toys to get rid of any chemical residue from the manufacturing process.
Practical baby shower gifts
- A subscription to OHbaby! Magazine
- A housekeeper or gardener for eight weeks after the birth
- Vouchers for cooked meals from friends
- Vouchers for a baby clothing store
- A prepaid membership to an online video rental service
- Creche vouchers for your gym (if you belong to one)
- Supermarket or online shopping vouchers
Hospital bag essentials
Being organised means less stress when an emergency situation pops up. So pack your bag well in advance of your due date, and it will be one less thing you have to think about when the big day arrives.
Include in your bag:
- Three pairs of comfortable pyjamas
- Dressing gown
- Skincare products
- Makeup - even if you only manage to swipe on some lip gloss and concealer, you'll feel better about how you look in all those pictures
- Shampoo and conditioner
- Toiletries (body wash or soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, body moisturiser, deodorant, etc)
- Towel and facecloth
- Knickers - several pairs, preferably ones that you don't mind throwing away if necessary
- Maternity bras, nipple shields, and nipple cream
- Reading material
- Camera and/or video camera, plus spare batteries/memory card
- Going-home clothes for you and baby
- Hair ties, hairbrush or comb, hair straightener
- Address book
- Mobile phone (make sure you have enough credit) and charger
- Thank-you cards for presents (you may find time to write these out in between visitors, feeds, and sleep)
- Prunes, water, juice, fruit - to help keep your digestive system clean and regular
Hints for new dads
Your gorgeous girl will love and appreciate you even more if she comes home from hospital to find the house spotless. If she is particularly house-proud, this is essential! First-time parents have lots to learn, and it can leave you feeling overwhelmed - a house-proud mum will be worrying about the state of the house on top of worrying if she is doing things right as a mum. Here are a few tips to help ensure a smooth and happy transition from hospital to home.
- Fresh, clean sheets on the bed
- Make sure all of the laundry is up-to-date - including the ironing!
- All furniture surfaces polished
- Floors vacuumed and mopped
- Bathroom and toilet clean, with fresh towels out
- Dishes done, kitchen clean and sparkling, benchtop clear
- Mail opened, sorted, and bills paid
- Fridge stocked with lots of fresh fruit and vegetables, and nutritious meals ready to eat/defrost
- Fresh fowers in a vase
- A card telling your partner how well she has done, what a wonderful woman she is and how much you love her
Michelle Denholm runs her own decluttering and organising business, Harmonious Living. She has helped many busy families bring order into an otherwise chaotic and cluttered environment. Check out the website www.harmoniousliving.co.nzfor more information, or call Michelle 021 421 900 for a chat about how she can help you.
AS FEATURED IN ISSUE 8 OF OHbaby! MAGAZINE. CHECK OUT OTHER ARTICLES IN THIS ISSUE BELOW