Bringing Baby Home: Getting Your Home Ready

Learn how to get your house ready when bringing baby home!

Preparing your home for baby’s arrival is exciting!

Nine whole months of pregnancy isn’t a cakewalk.

For me, a twin pregnancy was difficult, even if it was my first.

I was scared about losing my babies and worried when I wasn’t gaining enough weight.

But then the time finally came! My twins were born!

Finally meeting your baby and bringing your baby back home is what you’ve been waiting for.

Preparing all the basic necessities in your home for you and baby ahead of time goes a long way.

Here’s a checklist of what you’ll need to get and do in your home before bringing home your newborn.

Bringing Baby Home

Crib or Bassinet

Baby will need a safe place to sleep. Crib safety is extremely important.

You can have your baby sleep in the same room as you or in a nursery room. Your baby is safest to sleep on his or her back and alone (apart from blankets, bumpers, stuffed animals, other objects, or people).

One of my favorite baby must-haves are baby Sleep Sacks. It keeps babies warm night or day and is a safe blanket replacement. 

Freezer Meals

I recommend either cooking meals and storing them in the freezer. You can also go find simple frozen meals at the grocery store that don’t take a lot of time to cook. Look for meals that you can just throw in the oven or cook on the stove within 10 minutes or less.

For example: frozen veggies, frozen pasta, or frozen fruit for smoothies. These can be combined to eat with other simple things like salads, toast, or fruit.

The process of grocery shopping, preparing food, cooking food, and actually consuming food is one of the most challenging aspects of being a new mother.

This will save you time and stress. You’ll need your strength and the ability to think (sleep deprivation and hunger don’t mix well!). Skipping meals is not to your benefit, mama.

Set Up Nursery

The best time to set up your baby’s nursery is before your baby comes home. Even though your newborn won’t be able to crawl right away, it’s best to childproof the nursery immediately following the setup.

If you’re into a country theme, check out Modern Rustic Nursery Ideas for New Baby!

Dresser

A dresser is the best way to store your babies clothes, and even accessories.

Drawer dividers are helpful in so many ways too. If you have only a small space to put your baby’s things, dividers work well to easily organize things like socks, caps, hair accessories, and clothes.

I’m pretty organized, but I still had a hard time keeping track of all the small things. It seemed like when it came time to find certain items, I’d spend too much time looking.

Blankets

Blankets are a must have. Again, just remember that your baby is safer to sleep without a regular blanket on them to keep them warm. Blankets increase the risk of SIDS.

But baby will still need one. Blankets can be used to change your baby’s diaper or for tummy time.

Receiving Blankets

Hopefully you got a lot of receiving blankets at your baby shower, mama. You’re going to need them! They come in handy for almost everything!

They’re lightweight and can be used to throw over your shoulder to burp your baby. You can also use them as a protector cloth to put underneath your baby’s bottom to change diapers.

Basically, these blankets are multi-purpose and can be used for lots of things!

Diaper Caddy

It makes sense to store all of your baby’s essential items within reach so you don’t have to keep going from room to room.

Keeping a diaper caddy in the room where you’ll spend the most time will save you the extra trips, as well as keep you organized.

A diaper caddy can also be used for more than just diapers. You can put in anything from bathing supplies, toys, or mix and match what you put in. I also like the idea of keeping a cady in the back of your car!

Put Up Cleaning Supplies

Although your baby won’t be getting into anything for some months down the line, it’s still a good idea to put away your cleaning supplies.

Especially if you have older children. You can never be too careful when it comes to keeping your little one safe.

Wash Baby’s Clothes and Blankets

Babies go through clothes and outfits like nobody’s business! So make sure you have several onesies, sleepers, and complete outfits. Don’t buy too many, because baby will grow fast.

Since your baby’s skin is sensitive, you might consider using a detergent that is free of toxic chemicals, dyes, and fragrances.

Spend Time With Your Partner

I know, I know. You might be wondering how and when you’ll find the time to spend with your partner when there’s so much to do before you bring baby home.

But hear me out, mama. You absolutely must make the time. This new stage of life is not going to be easy for you or for him. It’s precious and beautiful, but it’s also extremely demanding.

There are so many cases where mothers shift all of their attention and focus to their babies after they’re born. This is not a bad thing, but you don’t want to neglect your partner. It may be hard to find the time now, but it won’t get easier after baby comes home. So start now!  🙂

Get back to doing the things you both enjoy.

Stock Up On Disposable Dishware

The first six weeks or so after you’ve had your baby may be the most challenging. Your body will still be healing, and your hormones will begin to level out again.

You have to eat. But doing the dishes is just one of those things you may have to let slide while you let your body heal. If you can, stock up on disposable plates, bowls, and plastic silverware.

Get Nursing Bras and Tops

Having even a couple maternity tops and bras on hand is a good idea because it will be so much easier to breastfeed.

Pulling your entire shirt down or lifting the whole thing up to breastfeed can seem a little weird. At home is one thing, but in front of others can be a little awkward.

Deep Clean Your House

Cleaning your entire home can feel like a daunting task to accomplish. So I suggest starting with the dirtiest places in your home first.

When those are done, work your way back to the rooms and surfaces that aren’t as dirty and will take you less effort to complete.

Pack the Hospital Bag

This is just a simple bag you’ll use to keep all of the items you’ll want and need at the hospital plus any supplies to bring your baby home.

The last thing you want is to go into labor without your hospital bag packed and ready to go, mama.

Make sure to pack at least one outfit for you and baby and have the car seat properly installed for when you head home from the hospital.

Check Safety Gear

Okay, now is the time to do a safety check within your home. Make sure the following are in your home and installed properly:

Downsize Clutter

This is a new season of your life, mama. Welcome it! Get rid of anything you don’t need that is taking up space in your home and life.

It’ll make you feel better. Too much clutter creates stress and tension. Keep only what you need and decide to treasure moments and experiences more than you value “stuff”.

Clean Out Your Refrigerator

Clean out all of those small bits of leftovers taking up space in the back of your fridge. Clean the outside of all those condiment containers that have gunk on them. Your kitchen needs to be welcoming and fresh.

Laundry

You’ll want to make sure you have all of your baby’s clothes washed and put away before you bring baby home. Unless you plan on throwing away all of the onesies your baby poops on (which some mothers do!) you need to be armed with stain remover.

Blowout diapers happen and milk stains are stubborn. You need to be ready!

Car Seat

You need to have a car seat to transport your newborn from the hospital to your home. The hospital staff will ask you if you have a working car seat before they discharge you. Some hospitals will even have a staff member walk down with you to visibly see that you do have one.

While 94% of parents believe they’ve installed their child’s car seat correctly, 72%-84% of child restraints are used incorrectly, posing a safety risk to children.

Depending on where you live, your local fire department and/or other organizations may offer affordable (or even free) classes that show you how to install the car seat properly. 

Safety is priority, mama.

Rocking Chair

This isn’t really a necessity, but it sure does make mamahood more pleasant! A rocking chair is a great place to breastfeed or bottle feed, and rock while you sing or talk to your baby.

It’s also a nice getaway spot for snacking while you read a great book when your baby is asleep.

Diapers and Wipes

Baby is going to need a ton of these over the first two or three years of life. It’s best to buy them in bulk and to stock up on as many as you can.

However, there is a caveat. Don’t buy too many of the same size! Especially in the lower sizes (for example, sizes newborn, one, two, and three). Your baby will grow so fast so there’s a good chance they’ll outgrow those sizes quickly.

Diaper Cream

All parents try to avoid diaper rashes from day one, but sometimes it still happens. Be prepared by having diaper cream on hand.

First Aid Kit & Hygiene Kit

When or if an emergency should arise, you need to have the tools and supplies to act quickly. Here’s a checklist for the basic things you want to have.

Identify Your Support System

Whether this is your first child or you have other children, a support system is absolutely critical. Identify the people in your life that are willing to help you and in what ways they have offered to help.

For example:

Janet- Wants to bring us hot meals

Lenora- Offered to help me clean

Hannah- Babysitting help

Sarah- Can give us rides on her days off on the weekends

Gabriella- Babysitting help

Naomi- Always has an encouraging word to share. She also can relate because she has 8 children

Linda- Get together for playdates

Hang this list on your fridge so these people are at the forefront of your mind when you feel overwhelmed and need their help.

Prepare a Care Kit or Mommy Basket

When you’re busy loving your little one, who will be loving you?! Over the years I’ve been a mother, I’ve learned one truth I would like to share.

Mothers must be intentional about loving themselves. Daily! A couple acts of kindness towards yourself once a month is not enough!

Even if you have to schedule yourself in to your own calendar, do it!

Stick your favorite teas in the basket, a couple of $10 gift cards to treat yourself to a smoothie or a drink you like at the coffee shop, bath salts, your favorite book, love notes to yourself, your journal, lip balm (or better yet…your favorite sexy lip gloss), or your favorite chocolates.

Baby Memory Book

All of your picture taking moments start the day your baby is born! So make sure you capture as many adorable pictures as you can.

This baby memory book allows you to capture and record your favorite pictures of your baby for each month of his or her life for the first five years.

Of course, you’ll have many other photos, but it’s pretty cool to compare the photos of your child month by month.

Prepare Your Home for Baby

Start preparing today to bring your baby home! The first few weeks will likely be a challenge, so having your home ready will lighten your load.

After all, the first few weeks or so will fly by quickly. And so will the years! Preparing your home now will allow you to spend more time bonding and enjoying your baby instead of making extra runs to the store or stressing out.

Congrats on your little one, mama!

Over to you now, what preparations have you made to bring your baby home? Share in the comments below.

Elna is a mom to twins who blogs and writes for a living. She loves all things mom. While she's not blogging, you can find Elna meal planning, organizing and helping other moms in her Facebook group, Mom to Mompreneurs.

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