Getting ready for the arrival of your newborn is hard work. With so much ground to cover and so little time, it’s no wonder you’re scrambling to find the best tips for the big day.
If you’re debating whether to go with cloth or disposable diapers, and organic or pre-packaged baby food, take a moment and slow down—there are some other factors you’ll want to focus on first. Read on to learn four essential baby preparation tips!
1. Fuel Your Body
During this early period of parenting, your baby will likely exhaust you. To avoid expending all of your energy, prioritize your nutrition and stay fueled. This means eating healthy foods, monitoring the amount of caffeine you consume, drinking enough water, and taking prenatal supplements for additional support. You are not a machine; you need to honor your body’s needs to be there for yourself and for your baby.
2. Establish a Care Schedule
To be there for your baby, you must make time for yourself. Don’t expect to pull in all-nighters without crashing the next day. You’re not a superhero, but you can be a great parent by establishing a baby care schedule that includes rest time for you. A care schedule can look differently depending on your needs and the patterns your baby falls into once they settle in.
You may not be able to create the most accurate care schedule before your baby is born, but you can create a rough idea of the game plan so that everyone involved is on the same page. Work with your partner, your nanny, your friends and family members, and anyone else who is involved with caring for your little one during this adjustment phase.
Decide who will keep track of the cleaning schedule, the baby, and who will be napping when. This ensures that everyone gets the break they need, and your baby gets the undivided attention they deserve.
3. Make A Baby Toolkit
When you just cannot get your baby to stop crying, consider the additional tools you have to help you. Some parents swear by classical music, walking up and down steps, or going for long drives to help their baby calm down. You will need to see what works best for your baby, but you can create a calming baby toolkit in advance to help you when times get tough.
Keep a diaper bag full of toys, DVDs, music, and other distraction aids that might help your baby settle down. Make a list of additional things that you can do to help these situations, including those long drives we mentioned! Keep this list somewhere you can see it (like on your refrigerator), so you can find something to use when you’re too tired to think of ideas.
4. Get Baby Gear Ready
Before the baby arrives, have your baby gear ready to go. Get that crib installed; the mobile hung, the stuffed animals stationed on the rocking chair, etc. You want your baby to come home to a safe and soothing environment, so do what you can ahead of time to make their first day home a real treat.
The Bottom Line
Preparing for your baby’s arrival is about being proactive, not the parenting trends you see in magazines. Make all the necessary plans for this adjustment period before the baby is born so that you can feel settled about the factors you can control. It will take some practice to get into the swing of things, but with these tricks up your sleeve, you’ll surely make parenting look like a walk in the park!