For some it can be quite fun to plan for a baby, while it may seem stressful for others. Everyone’s situation is different. Maybe you have more to do’s than average. Maybe you’re in the middle of moving or you’re away from home and don’t have the support of close family as you would like to help prepare for the newest addition coming. And it seems like you’re doing so much without doing anything at all. The struggle can be so real sometimes. However, these are some basic needs to take care of before your baby has their first day home. These are easy to do yet so important and useful and will help make the other to do’s so much more easier to accomplish.
#1 Baby’s Space
Not everyone can afford the luxury of a baby nursery but that shouldn’t stop you from making sure the baby has a designated space specifically for their items. This will help you to not lose your mind every time you go looking for something and a good, affordable start is a cubicle. These can be purchased at Walmart, Target, Amazon or Ikea. The good thing about cubicles is that it affords you the option to choose a reasonable size for your specific circumstance or need unlike dressers. A good way of keeping track with everything is having bins and labeling them so it takes away from the time you would spend sorting through everything and putting them back accordingly.
#2 Smoke Detectors
If you’re in the middle of a move to accommodate your newborn or just haven’t checked up on your fire alarms in a while, it’s time to do so. A good start in the case of a fresh move is to go to your local fire department and ask about the program they offer to obtain smoke detectors. It varies by state and city but most cities have a program that offer free 10 year lithium battery operated smoke detectors plus free installation. If your home has them already check the batteries and replace them if needed to make sure they are working correctly.
#3 Carbon Monoxide Detectors
Don’t get these confused with smoke detectors because they are not the same thing. Although they are not often talked about they’re just as important to have as smoke detectors. Reason being, carbon monoxide is highly toxic even in small doses and can cause lasting health concerns. Some of its symptoms include dizziness, nausea and headaches. Carbon Monoxide has no smell and can not be seen with the naked eye so its important to arm your home with CO detectors for that extra safety for you and baby. These have to be purchased but run for as little as 15 dollars in retail stores.
#4 Finding Baby’s Pediatrician
Look for a good pediatrician that you can trust, this is so imperative once the baby is home. Whether you’re new to an area or just aren’t happy with your current pediatrician, a good starting point to look for one would be family and friends(who have children), then your children’s school or daycare. Inquire with other parents and teachers for good recommendations. Ask about the quality of services and visits, the size of location, waiting times and the earliest appointment schedules on average when you get some places on your list to call. But don’t forget to ask parents if they feel like they’re being heard at their children’s appointments before hand because then calling is a waste of time if they don’t. A good pediatrician will take into consideration your personal wants and concerns for your child. Case in point, if your child is due for 3 vaccines in one visit and you only feel comfortable with two in one visit you’ll know you have a good pediatrician when they respect your concerns and don’t try to force their own opinions on you.
Keep in mind the bigger the clinic or hospital, normally the longer the wait as well as delayed or backed up appointments for either regular checkups or emergency visits. Which means you probably won’t be priority when you don’t have an appointment and pop up at the clinic in panic mode wanting to be seen.
Trust me I’ve been there. I moved from one area to the next and changed my son’s pediatrician without doing my homework. They were always backed up and when we did have an appointment the waiting time was an hour long. Needless to say I quickly switched us back to the small clinic we were both used to for primary care where I could call and the next day or two we could be seen with little waiting time. This was despite the 45 minute travel distance because the service was and still is that bomb. I’m saving you the trouble by telling you this because it’s not conducive to a stress free life to have to wait a week or possibly over a month when your child needs clinical treatment.
Get rid of everything that is just taking up space in your home. Sell it, junk it, thrift it. Just get rid of it because even though the baby will be tiny, the items you’ll have for baby will not be. And while you’re figuring out the specifics for #1 on this list, everything that the baby has will not always be in the baby’s space. It’ll be everywhere, the kitchen, living room and bedroom included. I’m talking swings, walkers, play pins, high chairs, etc because with every member of the family, comes their personal items in abundance which takes up A Lot of space. This can and will drive you insane if you don’t rid yourself of things unnecessarily taking up space. Whatever you don’t wear, use or consume to the left it goes.