pack your bags!

It would make sense that now my son is almost 10 weeks old I am finally wrapping up my posts on pregnancy/before he was here. Like several of my other posts, this is something I want to reference for my next pregnancy. Plus, I have some preggo blog friends and know posts like this were super-helpful to me.

Anyhow, here's what we packed and my notes on some:

  • Camera. Duh. And batteries/the charger. We did use our iPhones a lot and they do take great pictures, but of course we still wanted the big one.
  • All the number of people who need to be called/texted programmed in your phone :) Although not all text messages may go out. Sigh.
  • Slippers/flip flops. I took both, but next time I'll just do flip flops. For the most part, I was burning up while in the hospital. But I'm not big on wearing shoes/socks either.
  • Shampoo, conditioner, body wash, loofah. The hosptial does provide these, but I'm picky.
  • Lotion
  • Ear plugs - didn't use.
  • Fan. My mom bought me one of those battery operated ones that you can also use to squirt water with, but it never came out of the bag. I will pack it again next time though, because labor could be much different.
  • Magazines/cards/books - didn't make it out of the bag. We watched TV and played on our phones when bored, but honestly, pre-baby, we just slept. (LOVE epidural/catheters :))
  • Snacks/hard candy. Hubby LOVED having snacks in the room. And as a breastfeeding mom who wanted five meals a day, it came in handy for me as well. Our hospital did have a room for patients/spouses with juice, water, sodas, jello/pudding and lunchables however, so we probably could have survived on those as snacks - especially the cracker lunchables as my late-night snacks :) Also, our hosptial provides three meals a day for the patient and hubby too. It was so nice to not have to leave!
  • Quarters - for the vending machine. Again, not something we needed :)
  • Notebook - to keep track of things for the birth story! I LOVED this. Although we probably could have used the notes app on our phones as well. It's nice to have while you are learning things like how to bathe, take temperature, etc.
  • Insurance and ID cards. We were pre-registered and actually did not need these.
  • Prenatal vitamins/iron pills (I was anemic). Didn't use.
  • Baby onesies, hats, socks, mittens. YES!!! I hated seeing my little nugget in the generic hospital stuff. Next time, I'll probably have it sitting out so he can be put in that immediately rather than the plain white onesie. Of course, you'll also need an outfit to come home in. We bought a 3 month at Carters and even though Cooper was 10 lbs, it was HUGE! Definitely will buy newborn next time.
  • Swaddling blanket. Mine didn't come out, we used the hospitals because we actually really liked it. We don't really like any of ours, next time I'll get some of the muslin ones that everyone raves about - they are similar to the hospital one I wish I would have brought home :(
  • Hair clips, pony tail holders, head bands - because you won't fix your hair and need it to be pulled back during labor at least.
  • iPod - stayed in the bag. Had I done the natural thing though, it would have been nice, so it will go again next time.
  • Phone charger
  • Makeup - didn't come on until our last day.
  • Straightener - only used last day (but nice for that coming home picture)
  • Hair dryer - our hospital had them in the room, so it didn't come out of the bag.
  • Car seat - of course!
  • Clothes for mom:
    • I thought about taking my own gown, but decided I didn't want to spend that money for something that would be ruined. It was a lot easier to wear a gown at first though, but I was totally ready to get into real clothes on day 2. (I didn't get out of bed other than to use the restroom that first day.)
    • I lived in black yoga-style pants and nursing tanks with easy-access shirts on top. Like I mentioned, I got really bad hot flashes in the hospital and the nursing tanks made it SO much easier when learning to breastfeed.
    • I took clothes that I could wear at about six months to wear home - and I was EXTREMELY swollen. I intended to wear mat jeans but just got lazy and decided not to change.
  • If you plan to nurse, you shouldn't need any breastfeeding supplies like pads or the pump. I actually got lots of samples. And soothies became my best friend once my milk came in, but we were home by then.
  • The baby book (if you're doing one) so you can get the footprints :)
  • Dad's things - clothes and toiletries. I intended to bring a blanket and pillows for hubby, but the hospital provides those and he isn't picky, so we left it at home - less to drag.
  • Folders for info: I took a couple (because you get LOTS of paperwork) but didn't use them, as our hospital provides a binder. But I would have if it weren't for that binder.
  • Boppy - once again, our hospital provides one to take home. But I LOVED this and think it would be helpful even for a mom who doesn't plan to nurse, because baby feels super heavy on the belly after just giving birth.
  • Birth plan. As I mentioned, it never came out of the bag. Even if you don't have one, make sure the nursery knows if you prefer the baby doesn't get a pacifier - I verbally told our nurses, but Coop ended up with one :( They say it should be posted somewhere on the bassinet.
  • A robe. Nice in case you are walking the halls (as I did when we went and was release the day before Coop was born) to help move things along. Those gowns aren't too attractive!
  • "Big girl" panties and other feminine products. I didn't pack any as a friend who delivered at the same hospital told me her nurses wouldn't allow any of that. My nurses would have OKd it, but I actually LOVED the mesh hospital panties and figured I was paying for all that, so I may as well take advantage of it. But to each his/her own.
  • Things to have once you get home: hemerrhoid ointment (just in case), witch hazel pads, Motrin (for the pain), stool softeners (to keep things moving, especially if you have hemerrhoids). I didn't think of any of this but luckily my cousin owns a pharmacy just a mile or so from the hosptial and came to my rescue!
  • Also, I didn't take one, but next time around would do garbage bags for dirty laundry, and a tote. You will get gifts in the hospital, and it's nice to have something to put them in, instead of making your husband have to carry them all to the car in several trips :)
I think that wraps it up! Obviously, things will be different for each labor, but for anyone else reading this, I hope I did a good job of explaining WHY we didn't use certain things. Definitely ask during your hospital tour what they provide so you aren't hauling a bunch of needless things!

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  1. Good idea to make this post! I feel like I brought so much stuff I didn't use :) And that I needed stuff I didn't bring! Although I didn't plan on having a c section and being there 3 days. Can't plan birth! :)

  2. I've been reading that after delivery women get really hot and or sweat for a few days to a week. So I'm wondering if I'd want flip flops.. I'm usually a slipper person around the house or socks.. so I have no idea. Maybe I'll pack the flip flops just in case. Sometime in March I need to go shopping for everything I need for the hospital stay.

    Is getting a catheter standard for everyone? Does it hurt?


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