We know you’re anxiously awaiting the arrival of your new baby. The sights, sounds, and feelings of parenthood are incomparable to any other experience in one’s lifetime. But there will be long days, even longer nights, and plenty of time to wonder, “Why didn’t I do this before the baby was born?”
Since your newborn is about to make a grand entrance, now is the perfect time to start prepare your home for the new baby. Here’s how to baby-proof your home and organize your life before the big day comes.
Clean the Home
Ladies in their third trimester are often tired, ungainly, and may be limited in terms of physical activity. If there was ever a time to pay for a cleaning service, it’s now. Have your home thoroughly cleaned two or three weeks before your due date, then again right before you’re scheduled to give birth. That way you come home from the hospital to a clean home. It’s healthy for the baby and clean and tidy for any guests and helpers you may have staying with you. Try to replace any caustic or chemical-based cleaning products with “green” cleaning products that won’t leave dangerous residues on hard surfaces.
Organize Your Living Space
Getting the nursery completely ready may seem like the first priority, but ask a hundred new moms if they’d rather have a pretty nursery or a functional home. Most often, they’ll choose the latter. Your living room and bedroom should be functional, comfortable, and livable. For example, do you have a bedside stand big enough for your phone charger, baby monitor, spare diapers and baby wipes, and all of the other baby-related items for easy access? Seek help from your partner or a family member to rearrange the home in such a way that it supports you and the new baby upon returning from the hospital.
Check off the Chore List
This is the time to take care of all of those nagging chores that will become way more complicated when you have a baby to manage simultaneously. Get the oil changed in the car, take the dog to the vet, make any phone calls you need to contractors, credit card companies, and other time-sensitive tasks. Also, make sure you don’t have any major house projects that are still rolling along during your third trimester. You need to have a quiet, safe, and comfortable home in which to bond with your new baby.
Stock the Pantry and Prepare Meals
The last thing you’ll want to do is grocery shop or cook elaborate meals when you’re home with a newborn. Friends and family members, who often want to chip in and bring dinners for a while, may be gone after a week or two. To make life easier, stock the pantry about two weeks before your due date with plenty of non-perishable items, buy foundational ingredients like meat, pasta, and vegetables, and freeze anything that can spoil.
Then, consider preparing a few meals ahead of time. Freeze them so they can be reheated a few weeks later. Using recyclable aluminum foil trays makes cleanup super easy. Cooking isn’t something you’re going to want to worry about for a bit, so plan as much as you can. Your future self will thank you!
Focus on Air Quality
Though cleaning the home is important, your indoor air quality is another big consideration to keeping you and your baby healthy. Address any moisture issues early on to limit mold in the home, clean carpets, drapes, and bedding. Check for these potential issues often to minimize dust and the presence of dust mites. Be sure to follow any doctor’s orders around creating separation between the baby and any pet-related products, like litter boxes or pet medications. If your home is dry, consider installing a whole-home humidifier to bring moisture levels within range, or simply run a humidifier in the rooms you frequent. Lastly, ensure nobody smokes near you or the baby, which is good advice at any age.
Your little one is almost here, and the excitement level must be building by the day. Focus on some of these basic cleaning and organizational activities and you’ll feel better prepared to take on your new parent role.