What do you do first, pack your hospital bag, or prepare a nursery? Get ready to pack your bags mama with these essentials!
Experts recommend to have your bags (one for you, and baby) packed and in your car by 35 weeks. (Taxi-taking moms — stash your bags in the front hall closet.) This list is meant to be helpful, so please don’t think you have to have everything on this list! Since this is our second baby, we’ve got a much better idea this time around of what to bring, and what to leave behind!
Also, a tip for the thrifty: Ask your hospital what they provide for babies and mothers, and take those items off your list.
Must-Haves for Mama:
[ ] Insurance info, hospital forms and birth plan (if you have one)
[ ] 2 maternity bras — no underwire, with no padding, we love this one
[ ] Toiletries and personal items — hairbrush, toothbrush, toothpaste, deodorant, face wash (remember, travel-sized products are your friends)
[ ] Headband or ponytail holder (avoid clips)
[ ] Cell phone and charger, phone numbers of people to call after birth, prepaid calling card (if your hospital doesn’t allow cell phones)
[ ] 2-3 pairs of warm, nonskid socks and slip-on hard sole slippers that can get ruined (for walking the halls indoor before and after labor)
[ ] Eyeglasses and/ or contact lens case and solution (remember, travel-sized products are your friends)
What to Bring For Baby:
[ ] Approved car seat
[ ] Nursing pillow (your lactation consultant can help you position baby if you plan to nurse)
[ ] A coming-home outfit
[ ] Warm blankets (for the ride home)
[ ] Outdoor gear like a snowsuit and hat, as seasonally appropriate (remember, babies are extra sensitive to cold)
[ ] A gym bag packed with a change of clothes and basic hygiene products for your partner
Optional Items it for Mama:
[ ] Very light reading (think magazines)
[ ] Your MP3 player (loaded with your favorite tunes, of course)
[ ] Massage oil and tools like rolling pins or tennis balls, and lucky or inspirational objects for labor
[ ] Pen and paper
[ ] Lip balm (hospitals tend to have dry air)
[ ] Camera, film or extra memory card, battery or charger
[ ] A ruin-able nightgown (you can use those lovely hospital gowns, but your own might help you feel more human) how cute is this one?
[ ] Nursing pads (whether or not you plan to nurse, you might appreciate the support and leak-protection)
[ ] A few pairs of maternity underwear that can get ruined (the hospital will have disposable pairs that can be worn)
[ ] Protein bar or other favorite snacks
Leave at Home:
[ ] Any clothes or nighties you really like (they could get ruined)
[ ] Stopwatch (your nurse or a monitor will take care of timing contractions)
[ ] Heavy flow sanitary pads (the hospital supplies these things, but bring your own if you’re super picky)
[ ] Fluffy Slippers (they will get dirty)
[ ] Extra pillow (unless you’re ok with one that can get ruined, in a pattern distinguishable from hospital white)
[ ] Your own bathing towel (of course the hospital will provide small towels)
[ ] Hairdryer (the hospital will provide, so leave at home unless you absolutely must have your own, this one is really awesome)
[ ] Breast pump, (the hospital should have one you can borrow)
Did we miss any of your ‘must haves?’ What would you add? Let us know in the comments below!