Tips

So you've read all the books and talked to all your experienced friends. Anything else you need to know?

NikkiChris's Top 10 Tips

Mom's Checklist for the Hospital

NikkiChris's Top 10 Tips to Countdown:

10. Set up items that require installation and practice if possible (e.g., install the car seat, assemble the crib, practice stroller set-up)

9. Prepare meals in advance and freeze them, or find good delivery alternatives. Try out online grocery ordering (as it's not recommended to take newborns into public places with lots of people) and have quick, easy recipes on hand

8. Practice asking for help (You will need it!) Start by asking someone to help with house and laundry

7. Take a big deep breath (good practice for labor) and have confidence that no matter what, you'll be a great mom

6. Schedule routine check-ups and personal hygiene appointments (e.g., dentist, hairdresser) before your due date

5. Take care of hospital pre-admission paperwork and go on a hospital tour

4. If you are going back to work, research and consider day care options

3. Shop for birth announcements and have a friend pre-address envelopes for those thank you cards

2. Review maternity leave policy and ask any questions well in advance (Even the best lawyers have a hard time navigating this complicated issue!)

1. Keep plenty of gas in the car, make sure the car is running and find out about parking at the hospital.

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Mom's Checklist for the Hospital

So, now that you have the NikkiChris Special Delivery System with all the essential supplies for baby (and couple for yourself) here's a list to double check what you may want to have for the hospital.

How much you bring to the hospital depends on personal preferences and the length you anticipate staying (2 days (generally) for vaginal birth and 4 days for cesarean). Packing for the hospital during the last trimester all of a sudden sounds like a daunting task and isn't much fun -- especially when you're belly is 2 yards wide. We suggest to keep it simple and to bring a few items from home that make you feel comfortable and help you relax.

Instead of an assortment of un-matching gym bags and/or black suitcases, consider bringing your essentials in the NikkiChris Messenger Bag along with the Delivery Tote which has baby's homecoming outfit. Look and feel put together and organized!

Clothing:

For the hospital: Check with your hospital during your tour (a must to-do item) what items they will provide for your stay. Generally, most will provide the basic items you'll need such as a nightgown, socks, and disposable panties. You may want to bring some "comfy" items such as a bathrobe, flat slippers or socks for walking around before or after the delivery.

For going home: Bring a loose-fitting, easy to get into, and comfortable going-home outfit since you will still feel pregnant (believe it or not!) and flat, soft-soled shoes.

Toiletries:

Once again, check with the hospital since most will provide basics like soaps and shampoo. However, we recommend bringing some of your own favorites and some cosmetics ( for that special photo shoot with new baby:-) ). Toss in the Nikki Chris Lavender Hydrating Mist and Herbal Shea Butter for that extra refreshing pick-me up before or after the delivery.

Bring a nursing bra and breast pads or check whether you can buy them at the hospital. Some hospitals even offer in-room shopping services where you can purchase such items and they will even help you with the nursing bra fitting.

Gear:

Cell phone and contact information to call family and friends with the good news.

CD/MP3/IPOD

"Easy reading" magazines

Camera -- Camcorder to record the special delivery event.

Car seat for the baby

Nursing pillow if you're going to breast feed. Again, you may be able to purchase one at the hospital after the delivery.

Additional items:

(You may want to add these items to the NikkiChris -- Mom's Organizer to have them ready at hand.)

Birth plan

Insurance card + confirmation of coverage for hospital stay

ID -- driver's license

Items for your partner:

Money + ID

Some basic toiletries

Change of clothes

Good sense of humor to keep up with "mom-to-be" during those rough contractions

College savings plan - just kidding ;-) - not just yet, of course.

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