I felt like I was pretty well stocked with baby stuff I had from the boys and purchases I made here and there, but now that my due date is knocking at the door, I keep thinking of random things I don’t want to forget. Now that I see how long my list in print, I better get my tail in gear!
Here’s my third trimester checklist:
Choose a pediatrician
After you’ve found a pediatrician, make sure you’re registered and the contact information is in your phone (helpful for filling out forms). Some doctors pay their first visit to baby when you’re still in the hospital, so advance planning and having contact info available comes in handy.
Get baby essentials
It sure seems like there’s a lot of stuff to buy for one tiny person — diapers, sleepers, four kinds of blankets, stocked changing table … After my first baby, I realized I didn’t need quite as much as store registries would have me believe. These are the basics I used with my last bundle and am sticking with this time around too. I find it’s better to start simple and get what you need from there.
Wash clothes, sheets, and covers
Wash all clothing, crib sheets, blankets, and burp cloths with a gentle, fragrance-free detergent. And don’t forget the swing, bouncer, Boppy, and car seat covers (especially if it still has Cheerios in it from the last kid like mine does). It doesn’t have to be a special baby detergent (they’re more expensive). I use Ecos for the whole family.
Pack hospital bag
I finished my hospital bag checklist, now I need to actually physically put our things in the bag!
Install the carseat
My infant seat has been sitting in the garage since my two year old was using it, so I need to wash the cover before I install it. If it’s your first baby, you can have it installed at one of these locations to make sure it’s done properly.
Wash feeding equipment
Clean bottles and/or breast pump equipment. Make sure the breast pump works and you know how to operate it, as well. Oh, I need to find a place in the kitchen for all the baby stuff too!
Might as well do a battery count for things like the swing, bouncer, and mobile before you’re too sleep deprived.
Finish the nursery
Baby won’t know or care if her room is done — actually she will only be able to see about 8 to 10 inches away for the first few months! Completing the nursery is on my list because I know after she’s actually here, it probably won’t get done anytime soon.
Plan sleep set up in your room
So baby’s nursery is looking lovely, but did you think about the set up in your room? She’ll be sleeping with you for awhile, so think about what set up you need. Will you use a basinet, Pack ‘n Play, crib, or co-sleeper? Do you need an extra changing pad to put on your dresser for middle-of-the-night changes? Don’t forget a nightlight.
Get newborn shoot props
The best time to take newborn pictures is between five and seven days old. The idea is that their heads become unsquished, skin color normalizes, and baby acne hasn’t set in. With that in mind, it doesn’t hurt to think about any props you want for baby’s first shoot to allow for shipping time.
If you’re taking him to a studio, the photographer might already have items to choose from, but I take my own at home so I like to be prepared. I ordered a little teddy bear hat for my boys, and this time I’m making a floral crown for my daughter. Here are some sweet ideas.
Snap a picture
It’s your last chance to document baby’s bump. Hire a professional photographer or at least ask a friend to take some photos for the baby book. My talented friend Alisa (Alisa W Photography) snapped this shot of me at 34 weeks. I’m so grateful to her because I think it’s the only proof I have of being pregnant with my baby girl! See my baby book ideas here.
Make sure you take care of yourself too. Buy sanitary pads (you might need them for several weeks) and a few nursing bras and tanks. And lanolin cream if you’re breastfeeding. You need this. I found out the hard way with my first baby. Ouch!
And do you know the frozen newborn diaper trick? Fill a newborn diaper with some water and put it in the freezer. It’s such a cool relief for a mama’s sore bottom after birth. I’m sticking a few in the freezer ahead of time.
Download a contraction timer app
Having an app on your phone to time contractions helps keep track and make sense of your contractions as your due date approaches. If you get obsessed with contraction timing at the end, like I do, you need one of these. There are a lot of options. I happen to be using AESOP Contractions Counter.
Visit the salon
Finally, I plan on getting a pedicure and haircut before baby’s birthday arrives. I can’t reach my toes at this point, which are not looking so pretty, and who knows when I’ll see the inside of a salon again!
My friend Ashby gave me an awesome salon budget tip. You don’t have to get the full pedicure massage treatment, you can get your polish changed for usually just $10!
Ask someone to watch the kids
If you already have children, make a plan with a trusted someone who can take them when labor comes. If the kids will be heading out the door too, you might also want to pack their bag in advance.
Buy sibling presents from baby
When I brought Adriano home from the hospital, Luca was too little to care about presents, and certainly too little to understand a present coming from his new little brother. But this time I’m going to buy something small for each boy from their little sister. I’m not anticipating any jealousy right away, but after Luca’s reaction to finding out it was a girl, it can’t hurt to start out on the right foot.
I wish I were a freezer meal mom, but I’m not. When I say meal planning, I mean I plan on going to Costco and buying two of every frozen family dinner they have.
I will also be buying paper plates. “That’s bad for the Earth!!!” as my four year old would yell (thank you, Bubble Guppies). Yes, I know, but households with brand new babies have a slightly valid excuse, right?
Stock up on supplies
And while I’m at Costco, I plan on stocking up on toilet paper, paper towels, diapers, detergent, basically most everything on the list in this post! Yes, you actually can leave the house with a newborn, but I’ll have a 2 and 4 year old with me too. I think I’ll put that experiment off as long as I can.
For everything else, there’s Amazon Prime, which offers two day shipping. (This is an affiliate link, but I honestly use it so much I would link it even if it weren’t!) I order everything from toothpaste to vacuum cleaners on there.
Take a look at your budget for the next month and see what you can automate or prepay. It will feel good not to have to worry about bills those first weeks.
Write and send any thank you notes for baby gifts.
I’ve only had my house professionally cleaned a couple of times, and this might be the next time we splurge. I’m getting big. When something falls on the floor it’s dead to me. Cleaning is becoming difficult, so I might just call someone before my due date.
Here is a printable version of my checklist:
Did I miss anything? Did you have everything done when the big day arrived?