Getting pregnant means a lot of things are going to change in your life, and one thing that’s going to change is how much time you’ll have to organize your space and keep on top of things. That’s why many parents-to-be starts focusing early on preparing their living space for their newborn. While many people put tons of focus on the nursery, this is a great time to get your whole house in order, because your little baby won’t be so little for long.
To start getting organized, consider the important things you’re going to need for when your baby arrives: an organized home, a plan in place to maintain good health, your support system. Here are four steps you should take to getting organized before you give birth:
1. Get your house together
Your newborn will mostly do three things: sleep, poop, and eat (and cry, but that’s another article). To that end, focus on the kitchen, the bedroom, and the living room. In the bedroom, organize your baby’s clothing using cubbies and divided shelves instead of one large drawer. This will stop the little outfits from getting jumbled and let you make quick outfit changes—even in the dead of night after a diaper blowout.
In your living room, keep a big basket or bin near a comfy chair that you can fill with your nursing needs. Store blankets, wipes, and any toys in a stylish, woven basket. Organizing tip: get a basket with a cover to hide the baby necessities.
Finally, in the kitchen, focus on clearing out space by getting rid of large serving ware platters you’ve never used and designate lower, easy access spaces for storing, cleaning and drying your baby’s bottles and food containers.
2. Your health
Keeping your baby happy has a lot to do with keeping yourself happy. Before your baby is born, designate ‘me-time’. Whether that’s exercise, walking in the park, reading, or going out for a coffee by yourself, you and your partner need to agree on designated ‘me-time’ for both of you.
Plenty of new parents don’t have a lot of time for full meals, so start looking up recipes or ideas for quick, healthy snacks like energy balls, string cheese, nuts, fruits, and more. Make a list ahead of time and try them all out so you know what you like before the baby is here.
Also, you don’t need to wait for your doctor for info. Keep track of your own health by using one of the multitudes of apps or online resources that let you have quick access to accurate pregnancy information. You know your body best.
3. Get help
It takes a village to raise a baby, which is why you need to put a support system in place. First, your workplace. Figure out early on with HR what kind of parental leave is available to you and what kind of timelines and expectation that entails.
Look into local childcare resources and decide what kind of childcare you’ll want and when you want it. Also, consider how your budget will have to be restructured to accommodate childcare.
Finally, your family and close friends should be your first line of defense. Let them be there for you and help you and don’t feel like you and your partner need to do this alone. People love to help, so tell them how they can.