You have a ton of things on your list as a new mom, but that pregnancy brain can hit towards the end! It is really helpful to have a checklist of items that will be useful as you pack that all-important hospital bag for the big day. Of course, babies come when they want, but it’s best to be packed and ready around 34 weeks just to be on the safe side. If you’re able to keep most of it in the bag, you can simply leave it in a closet or nearby.
-A great weekender bag: We love the weekender bag from Freshly Picked, or the weekender size bag from Beís. These are both choices that allow you plenty of room without being very heavy or very bulky. They are stylish and pretty, as well as fairly affordable. Plus, you can use it again and again after baby arrives, for short trips or overnights.
-Newborn carseat: Be sure to have the carseat based installed in the car that you will be taking to the hospital. Take the newborn seat section out and remove all packaging, plastic, and tags so it’s ready for the baby, and practice installing the whole thing a few times to feel comfortable with it.
-Phone charger: Pack a charger or two, along with a wall adapter. It can be something that you can easily forget, so putting it on the bag early on is smart. You’ll want that phone charged up to send all the cute pics and updates to friends and family! It’s also smart to assign a close family member or friend to be the “updater” to others if something unexpected happens during the birth, and you need recovery time or are under anesthesia. That helps your spouse or partner not be overwhelmed by tons of texts.
-What makes it feel like home: Many moms prefer to bring their own pillow or even blanket to the hospital. It is nice to have it feel more homey and less like a hospital. Don’t forget the things you’ll need as a mom, like a headband or hair ties, and a little lip gloss or perfume to help you feel more like yourself.
-A pretty swaddle and plenty of outfits for baby: Remember that if you are sore or exhausted, simple outfits are great for midnight diaper changes. Look for outfits with zippers and soft fabrics and elastic, and remember that babies may spit up or wet through more outfits than you realize. Most people recommend 4-5 outfits even for just a few days. Purchase a special swaddle set for photos or announcements, and then stick to easy-to-access knit or cotton sets to make your life easier as you will likely be doing multiple diaper changes. We love the swaddle sets from Milkmaid Goods, which comes in sets for boys or girls and even neutral colors if you’re waiting to be surprised.
-A pretty robe or matching set: Many medical providers will be coming in to check on you often after baby is born, and if you opt for a c-section, then you’ll also have your incision checked. Wearing a pretty, soft robe or matching set will have you feeling a little prettier but still allow access for nursing or medical checks. We love the sets from Milkmaid Goods for pretty and comfortable options that also coordinate with baby, if you want! They will also allow you to feel covered but comfortable if visitors drop by to see the baby or take photos!
As you welcome your new baby, remember that even if you forget something you need at the hospital, most hospitals are equipped with lots of the basics, such as newborn diapers/wipes, pads, etc. The labor and delivery nurses are usually more than happy to help!