The Mum Club guide to packing your hospital bag
The time has come where I need to get my hospital bag ready. As a first time mum to be I can imagine this is probably much more exciting the first time than the second or third! Buying nappies even gives me a bit of a thrill, i'm sure that won't last!!
But although I am excited it does still send me into cold sweats. My university approach to working kicks in and the 'ill just do it later' returns. You see pregnancy is a long 9 months, not to mention the added year of trying to make the damned thing. So when suddenly you're faced with just a few weeks left it kind of feels surreal and that you can't possibly be at the end this soon!
But here I am, 9 days until due date. Baby fully formed and nearly fully cooked. So to help myself get my arse into gear in the fear that unlike university I can't just drop out, I figured i'd write it down for you to see exactly what I am packing. It's worth pointing out that we do not know the sex of our baby so I have gone for gender neutral on everything! But to be honest i'd probably do the same even if I did know!
*Please note that all brands used below are what we have chosen to use, there are of course plenty of other great brands out there!*
ITEMS FOR BABY WEBBS
1. Aldi Mamia nappies- SO many people have told me that Aldi do the best nappies! Not only are they cheap but I feel like those that told me are the kind of people to pay whatever it takes to get the best product so it must carry some weight! The first question I had was how the hell do I know what size my baby will be. Well the truth is you won't. But if you have a whopper of a baby that doesn't fit into newborn nappies then do not fret, your birthing partner can always make a mad dash to the nearest store, that or the midwifes secret supply will come out! Or if you feel extra panicked then take a few in the bigger size just to cover your back..or theirs even! We have bough newborn size 2 for now.
2. Water Wipes- I've chosen to use water wipes mainly due to my skin rash attack during my pregnancy and wanting to use as natural a product as I can on my baby when it is born. I have also bought a MASSIVE BOX (Amazon has a flash sale) of Pampers sensitive wipes so will use both. Most people I know use Pampers or Huggies and do not have a problem. I am not taking nappy cream, I will however use it should I need tonne we get home- sudacrem probably.
3. Aden & Anais Muslins- You can get cotton Muslins squares for SUPER cheap from most baby stores. My advise is get them big. I treated myself and got some amazing Aden & Anais ones they are made of bamboo cotton and are so so soft, they are exactly what i'd want wrapped round me for comfort so applied that principle to baby Webbs. Plus they double up as swaddling blankets and are perfect for hiding boobs if I breastfeed- no I don't know if I will, i'll let nature take its course and if it doesn't work then i'll happily jump on the bottle.
4. Next short sleeved bodysuit vests - So I was advised by a friend of mine that basic white baby vests, sleep suits, bodies are best from Next. Apparently they bobble least when washed! I am yet to test her theory but she is a relatively new mum and so i'll take her advise onboard. Plus Next quality always seems to be very good, as well as the price range for something you'll throw a lot away of!!!
5. Mori Sleepsuits x 2 - Having said that about Next, there is no softer baby grow on the market than Mori. Again made from Bamboo cotton I am desperate for them to make a giant mum onsie for me to slip into. Mori also do incredible deals so sign up to their newsletter. We've just purchased their 'Clever sleeping bag' which you can used from 0-2, although its quite big so I wouldn't put a newborn in it. If you sign up to their mailing address they have a lot of offers on and send out discount codes quite regularly! Score. Be warned though, they do take a while to deliver, or maybe just mine did!
6. Mori hats- Again, to match babies body suit I opted for these lovely bamboo cotton Mori hats. Baby needs to keep the heat in its body when it is born and rather than stick a big knitted hot hat on its head, these soft little caps are perfect for its soft fragile little head.
7. Jo Jo Malon Scratch mittens - You can get scratch mittens from just about anywhere, mine are actually a hand me down from my sister who used them on her two when they were born. They are important to have as babies nails grow inside of you and their skin is so soft and sensitive you don't want them hurting themselves. Since my due date is January they will double up as gloves for our little one.
8. Bear Ears Cardigan from The White Company - Dressing your baby up as a bear has to be the latest craze but how can you resist when they just look so cute. We were advised to stay away fro snowsuits when they are first born mainly due to them being quite big but The White company actually do one for Newborn that would be fine. However we have Gone for a vest, onesie, thick jacket, hat and blanket combo.
9. Sleepydoe Buggy Blanket: Tiny Moons If you haven't yet checked out Sleepydoe I urge that you do. Beautifully printed children's sleepwear and bedding designed and made in the UK. Unfortunately this blanket is now sold out, but collection TWO is launching in Feb and we cannot wait to see the new materials and prints. This blanket has soft towelling on one side to mop up any mess. We love.
10. Maxi Cosi Pebble Plus car seat A staggering 70% of people do not fit their babies car seats correctly! That statistic makes me feel a little sick. So when choosing a car seat for our newborn I wanted to make sure we had the best of the best. We took ourselves to a car safety centre and were advised on which car seat to get for our car, and had them fit it there. I really advise that everyone does this, in my opinion there is no price too high for travel safety of anyone let alone your child.
ITEMS FOR ME
So i've come to realise that this is the less fun bit. It's like packing for a really shit holiday. A holiday that needs sanitary pads thicker than a mattress and large granny cotton knickers is not one I wish to be taking any time soon! But alas, these are just a couple of the chic items I have been told I will need come D day. And since i'm guessing you don't need to see a picture of a breast pad whilst you eat your breakfast; here is a list of what is making the bag.
1. Hospital notes & birth 'plan'- I say this as lets face it not many peoples birth goes with thier plan!
2. Night shirt & PJs - Incase you have to stay, and if the ward is cold i'm packing both.
3. Vaseline/ lip balm
5. Tens Machine- I bought mine off of amazon for about £30, but you can get them second hand off of eBay- note: make sure you have batteries packed if it needs them!!
7. Snacks/drinks- For you and your birthing partners, it could be a LOOOONNNG few days and kets face it hospital food is grim even out of a vending machine.
8. Slippers/ flip flops- I am taking both. I hear it gets hot during your birth so flip flops are good, also you can use these in the first god saving shower you have which I hear is like heaven.
9. Phone & Charger- If anything this will just help you pass the time.
10. Music & headphones- I am currently making a playlist that I think will help me through labour. My favourite songs, nothing too head crazy but stuff to keep me calm and zone me out. I am a bit music fan, but I appreciate some people will not find this helpful!
11. Maternity pads- Thick ones, don't be sigh, the thicker the better. You've got a lot of gunk that needs to come out of you somehow!
12. Breast Pads- Your milk may or may not come in that early but its worth taking just incase.
13. Going home outfit- leggings.. do NOT pack jeans!
14. Toiletries- tooth brush/ Tooth paste/ Shampoo/ Conditioner/ Deodorant- take smells that remind you of being home and clean, it will make you feel much more comfortable.
15. Entertainment- Book/ Crosswords/Magazines
16. Cheap large primary knickers- So you can also take disposable knickers, but i can't even stand the ones they give you during a spray tan so god knows how i'd cope with the granny version. I;d rather have big soft cotton ones thanks!
17. Makeup /Makeup wipes- Do not feel the need to bring makeup! I just think i might want to make my face look a little less swollen at some point, be it for a photo or to leave feeling slightly human again!
So what bags am I using? Well to keep things separate i'm packing a bag for Baby and a bag for me. It can be quite chaotic so its nice to know where everything is in the heat of the moment. I also think you should take your birth partner through the bags so they can easily access anything you might need!! So it's Tiba and Marl, who I am a little obsessed with, for the kid and a very practical North face bag for myself. We are a little luggage obsessed in our house, we have a bag for every type of travel available so it seems and North face is the brand of choice!. Anything to make life easier!!
Note: Hospitals are generally quite cramped so although we'd all love to take our kitchen sinks be mindful of the amount of stuff you take, keep it to two bags as you'll also have a baby to carry home with you.