Photo by @hunterandcophotography
Is your due date fast approaching?
Welcoming a baby into the world can be one of the most beautiful and exciting times of your life. Once they're born, we do not doubt that you won't want to leave their side, so it’s important to get the necessities sorted before they arrive so you can transition smoothly into parenthood.
To help you prepare for the arrival of your newborn, we got in touch with our friends at Tiny Hearts Education who are experts in all things pregnancy, birth and beyond to ask them what are the vital tasks for new parents to tick off before bub arrives.
1. Prepare the nursery
While your little one is going to be spending the next 6 to 12 months sleeping in your room, the nursery will be your go-to for all things baby, so it's vital to have it set up before you go into labour - because who wants to be setting up a flatpack with a newborn? Your bub's nursery should include:
- A cot
- A change table and everything you would need for nappy changes
- A comfy chair for Mum or Dad to sit in for feeds
- Any feeding equipment (e.g. breast pump or bottles)
- The baby's clothing
To view a list of items that shouldn't be included in your child's nursery, click here.
2. Get their clothes ready
Believe it or not, but babies go through a lot of outfit changes in a day! Before bub arrives, make sure you have the basics on hand. The majority of newborns will need:
- 6-8 jumpsuits
- 2 nightdresses or jumpsuits
- 2 cardigans or jackets (for winter)
- 6 singlets
- 3 tops
- 3 cotton rugs (for winter)
- 3 muslin wraps (for summer)
- Cotton hats and beanies
3. Start hoarding nappies
Well, not literally but did you know that the average baby needs 8-10 nappy changes per day!? Who would have thought something so cute and tiny could poo and wee that much. So, with that in mind, make sure you have enough nappies to take with you in your hospital bag and enough for the first few weeks at home, so you do not have to make a mad dash to the shops because you've run out.
4. Get the car seat fitted
Before you head to the hospital, it's essential to have your bub's car seat correctly installed by a car restraint professional. By law, all children must be secured in a properly fastened child restraint. For bubs under six months, you will need to purchase a rear-facing child restraint with an inbuilt harness. The restraint should be installed in the backseats of the car, not the front.
5. Pack your hospital bag
It's essential to pack your hospital bag well ahead of time as labour can often begin suddenly and unexpectedly. Here are some of the key items that you should include in your hospital bag:
- Going home clothes
- Loose, comfortable clothing
- Supportive bras (maternity bras)
- Slippers and thongs
- Cheap or disposable underwear
- Maternity pads
- Basic toiletries
- Warm jumpers or cardigans
- Breastfeeding pads
For your bub:
- Baby blanket
- Baby wipes
- Baby clothes
- Booties or socks
- Medicare card
- Hospital paperwork
- Antenatal card
- Birth plan (if you have one)
- Insurance details (if you have private health)
- Phone, camera and changers
- Snacks and drinks
- Eye mask and earplugs
6. Work out your birth plan
Ahh, the birth plan! So many people ask us should they make one? And while your plan may not go to plan, it's essential to plan your ideal birth and consider the following questions:
- Where do you want to birth your baby?
- Who do you want there when you welcome your baby?
- What would you like the environment to be like?
- What type of labour and birth would you ideally like?
- When early labour starts what you like to do?
- Would you want to try any non-pharmacological methods of pain relief like hydrotherapy, birthing ball or breathing exercises?
- What sorts of pharmacological pain relief methods would you like to try? (E.g. epidural, gas, TENS machine)
- What position would you like to birth your baby?
- What interventions would you consider? (E.g. caesarean or forceps) • How would you like to deliver the placenta?
- Who would you like to cut the cord and when?
- Do you want to breast or bottle-feed your baby?
- What do you want to be open-minded about?
7. Organise parental leave
Before your bub arrives, make sure you've talked to your employer about parental leave and what you're entitled to. Click here to find out more about parental leave entitlements. It's also important to discuss with your partner about work arrangements once parental leave ends. Will you both be returning to work? Will your little one be going into care or will a loved one be looking after them? Will one of you stay at home? Will one of you only work part-time? These questions are fundamental to discuss before your little one arrives.
8. Enjoy some one-on-one time with your partner
If you're a first-time parent, it's going to be a little while until you and your partner get some quality alone time so make sure you soak up as much time with each other as possible. Go to the movies, go out for dinner, go to the spa - anything that the pair of you enjoy together!
9. Book into a pregnancy and birth course
Unsure about the process of labour and birth or not sure what to expect in the first few weeks of life as a parent? A birth course helps to clarify the entire process - the Tiny Hearts Bump, Birth and Beyond course provides a holistic and evidence-based overview to help you prepare for a positive birth experience and a beautiful transition into early parenthood.
10. Book into a baby and child first aid course
There is nothing more precious the life of your little one, which is why all expecting parents should attend a baby and child first aid course. The Tiny Hearts First Aid course empowers parents with life-saving skills that could one day save the life of the person they love most. Plus! They cover all the everyday illnesses and injuries like ear infections and grazes, so you're prepared for life's bumps and tumbles.
To get $10 off your baby and child first aid or Bump, Birth and Beyond course, use the code DOCKATOT10 at the checkout. Click here to book or view dates.
And lastly, the most important thing to do is enjoy the experience! Being pregnant and giving birth doesn’t happen every day. We wish you the best of luck with the remainder of your pregnancy and have no doubt that you’re going to make an amazing parent.
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