Getting ready for a new baby is a huge responsibility, and it can be a stressful time for many parents-to-be due to financial worries or just the sheer amount of tasks that have to be accomplished in a short amount of time. However, this is also when you should be enjoying the nesting process and preparing the home — and yourself — for all the changes yet to come. It’s important to take time for yourself now so you can focus on your mental well-being and physical health without stress or anxiety.
In addition to carving out time for self-care right now, there are several ways you can start preparing for baby without spending a ton of money. Every parent has different needs, so think through what will make your life easier from day one. A few things to consider might include whether you’ll breastfeed, where your infant will sleep for the first couple of months, how much time you’ll have off from work, and who will be there to help you. By thinking about the details now, you can save yourself a lot of time and money in the long run. Here’s how to get started.
Look for Deals Now
When it comes to having a baby, there aren’t many things you can plan too far ahead for. Clothing and accessories are always needed, so start looking for deals on the things you’ll need. Whether it’s bibs and sleepers or some cute maternity outfits for those final uncomfortable days, these are areas where it’s easy to save money. It’s also a good idea to think about what you should bring with you on outings with the baby. In addition to the essentials, consider packing the diaper bag with things you’ll need like an extra shirt, hand sanitizer, and a portable phone charger. Stores often offer great discounts online, so look for coupon codes that will allow you to get the best deal from the comfort of your own home.
Stay Comfy After Baby Arrives
It’s an unfortunate truth that the discomfort and pain moms feel doesn’t go away once the baby is born; afterward, we still have to deal with swollen tummies and breasts or C-section scars, and this can make a tired mama feel even worse. So, look for comfortable clothing that will help you find relief, especially if you plan to breastfeed; maternity pajamas can help you get through a long and sleepless night much more easily. Pick up a few of these now so you can have a few ready to go after your baby comes.
Prep Some Meals
Preparing for your baby isn’t just about making sure your home is ready; it’s also important to think about how you’ll get through the first couple of weeks with a newborn while you’re sleep-deprived and possibly in pain. Finding time to eat is something many new moms say they have trouble with, so cooking healthy meals will likely be difficult for you. In order to save time and make sure you have plenty of nutritious meals to eat, take the time to meal prep so you have a variety of options you can freeze now and choose from later.
Review Your Budget
The first year of parenthood can be pretty expensive — the average household forks over $12,000. Knowing that a considerable expenditure is in your future, take the time to review your finances and cut costs where you can. For example, if your health insurance is lacking, you can start adding money to an HSA to offset medical bills. If you have a pricey cable or satellite subscription, swap it out for streaming services instead. It’s also a good idea to review your car insurance to make sure you have enough coverage and that you’re getting the best rate. Comparison shop top-rated insurers to see who can give you the cheapest rates on the coverage you need. By assessing where you can save now, and even putting money aside, you’ll be in a better financial position once baby arrives.
A big part of preparing for a baby’s arrival is the nesting, which involves putting together the nursery and making sure everything is ready. However, you can also do some things around the rest of the house to make things easier for the first couple of weeks, such as doing a deep clean and getting organized. Pay upcoming bills a little early, and create a feeding station where you can sit comfortably and have a place to keep a large water bottle (it’s crucial to stay hydrated when you’re breastfeeding!), extra bibs, a support pillow, and anything else you’ll need. Think about the best ways to get things ready so you won’t have any worries once you get home.
Getting ready for a new baby is an exciting time filled with all sorts of new experiences, so the more you can prepare, the less chance you’ll have of being overwhelmed. Keep it simple during the first couple of weeks so you can enjoy your time with the baby.
Guest Post by Emily Graham