*This post is sponsored by Guardian Storage via the Motherhood. All opinions are 100% my own. Thank you for supporting those brands that support Afternoon Espresso.*
Expecting a baby is exciting, but can be overwhelming and stressful at the same time! At 38 weeks pregnant, there are some things that are 20/20 in hindsight of course, but there are also a few things we did right! Today, I’m sharing
5 Stress Free Ways to Prepare for Your New Baby’s Arrival
1. Make Room for All the “Stuff”
Oh the stuff… Who knew such a tiny little human would need so much “stuff”! I’m pretty sure Joey was going to go crazy if another box arrived on our doorstep. Let’s combine all of the baby things with the idea that we should renovate our kitchen. All of the stuff from our kitchen began to fill up our other rooms and we had zero space with two dogs and two adults trying to navigate our home!
My resolution for this: grab a storage unit from Guardian Storage in your area. We partnered with Guardian Storage in Cranberry, and I can’t even begin to tell you how incredible of a decision this was. Guardian Storage allows you to rent a unit on a month to month basis. There are many different size options to suit your needs.
At first I was concerned that I would be adding more work than what I needed. I can honestly say this was the complete opposite. One of the perks I love most about Guardian is that they allow you to have packages delivered to your unit so there is no back and forth. All of the baby items and registry items can be sent directly to the unit! Guardian offers fully secured, climate controlled, and clean facilities. Each renter has their own entry code to get into the gated area, plus surveillance cameras are all around, so there is no need to worry about leaving precious valuables there.
You also have full access to free wi-fi, a little conference room if you wanted to have some peace and quiet to get some work done, and an oh-so-friendly on-site consultant to help you with anything you may need. When we met the manager at the Cranberry location who was the sweetest person I’ve ever met. Of course, she loved that I was expecting and was so enthusiastic about our little Baby P!
Be sure to check out Guardian Storage in your area! Whether you just have some things to store temporarily, are moving, or need some extra space, there is a solution for you!
2. Spend Quality Time with Your Significant Other
I cannot stress this enough. Everyone I have spoken to cannot stress this enough. We know that having a baby is going to bring on lots of changes emotionally, physically, and even with our relationship. I’m not saying those changes are going to be bad changes, but I’m sure there is going to be a period of adjustment for both of us.
I initially planned on being so far ahead with work that I would basically be just waiting for Baby P to arrive the last two months of this pregnancy. My plan was to spend those last two months with Joey and just enjoy “us” time. This next statement, I will preface by saying I do not do last minute. It stresses me out. With that being said, our nursery still isn’t finished and I haven’t written a single blog post for my maternity leave yet.
We are currently 38 weeks pregnant. You know what? I’m okay with that. Why? It’s because we’ve chosen to take the last few weeks just focusing on spending quality time with each other and not stressing about silly things that aren’t necessary. Baby P doesn’t care if the nursery is ready. As long as she has her loving parents, food, a place to sleep, and some diapers she is going to be okay!
Trust me when I say, it took me a while to come to this conclusion, but I’m so glad I did. It’s been so nice and relaxing not getting caught up in the hustle and bustle of life. We’ve actually taken naps and gone on dates with each other. It’s secretly my way of getting out of cooking dinner… I keep saying, “this might be our last date night for a while!”
The other day we just sighed with happiness realizing our sweet little girl can come any day now! We’ve talked about what she will look like and whose traits she will have. It’s so nice to just enjoy those moments and really take in pregnancy. I’m not going to act like pregnancy is my most favorite thing in the world because there are certainly ups and downs to pregnancy. Relishing in those moments with your significant other that there is a tiny human inside of you made up of you and them. It’s just beautiful. It’s the most precious thing that can happen to two people.
We are getting ready to start a new journey together. I’m sure we will look back one day and say, “what did we do with our time before Baby P?” Until then, be sure to take the time and enjoy those precious moments together. Enjoy the things you love doing as a couple and talk about how you might do things as a family. It’s fun!
3. Maintain Your Routine
Maybe this is just my type-A personality, but some of my happiest days have been where I was able to maintain my routine. With all of the changes and challenges that come with pregnancy, a routine was something I could control, for the most part <insert nausea at 5 pm in the evening or extreme exhaustion where I couldn’t seem to get out of bed>.
A big item for me was maintaining my workouts for as long as I possibly could. This is something I actually feel proud of myself for. Working out has always been my happy place. It brings out endorphines and just makes me feel good about myself. It makes me feel like I accomplished something. I made it a priority to keep this part of my routine and I managed to work out until about 35 weeks, slowly adjusting the difficulty levels as my body told me to.
Whatever it is in your routine that makes you happy, try your hardest to keep up with it. You will feel so proud of yourself that you did.
4. Pack Your Hospital Bag
This is something I wouldn’t wait last minute to do. I spent a lot of time researching what to put in my hospital bag. I probably spent too much time on this, but I don’t know what I’m going to need at the hospital. I’ve never done this before. I also know my personality and comfort items can really help me get through tough times. Aside from the research, there were definitely some items I had to order online and wait for them to come in.
If I’m calm and comfortable, things tend to go much more smooth for me in general. I know you are probably thinking, “who is comfortable during labor?” What I mean by that are just things that can ease my mind and make me feel a little more at home. For example, ever since I was a little girl I’ve slept with a fan blowing in my face. <I blame my older brother for this one.> I cannot sleep without a fan, so I invested in a portable clip-on fan for the hospital bed. To some this might seem entirely unnecessary, but to me, I know this is going to comfort me. If this little fan helps me get 15 minutes of sleep, then I would say it’s worth it! I’ll be doing a full blog post on everything I’m putting in my hospital bag soon!
5. Plan Your Nursery
You can call me a hypocrite right now, but this is also something that I wouldn’t wait until last minute to do. I’m a planner and if I could do it all over again, I wouldn’t have waited until last minute. I would have just gotten things done as soon as I found out what we were having. (Hindsight is 20/20) This would have avoided that moment in my life where I did actually panic and cause myself unnecessary stress. Thankfully, I realized how unnecessary the stress was and quickly came to my senses of realizing what’s important <See #2 in this post>.
If you are like me and have any indecisive bone in your body, you may want to consider the nursery plans early. In fact, I’ve been so indecisive that our nursery has turned out 100% entirely different from my original vision. One of those reasons was because I really wanted to do this wallpaper I found, which was kind of pricey. I couldn’t find someone who installed wallpaper locally for months. I finally found someone, and sure enough she wouldn’t do it because it was “too delicate” for her comfort. If you have any intentions of hiring contractors for doing any work in your nursery, this should be your number one reason to start it early.
Another bonus for starting the nursery early is you can watch for things to go on sale! If you know there is a big sale holiday coming up like Memorial Weekend, Labor Day, or Black Friday you will be sure to find some good bargains.
What are some ways you’ve prepared for your new baby’s arrival? I’d love to know! Comment below.