This post may contain affiliate links.
With the countdown on to my due date, we’re busy preparing our house and family for the new baby. With this being our third and having two older toddlers to consider, I’m doing my best to make the transition an easy one. Last time I checked, I wasn’t trying to make my life any harder than it needs to be with a newborn. Who would, right?! I heard 3 is a game changer. If I can wrangle the chaos prior to his arrival, than I feel like I’ll be one step ahead of the game when sh*t gets real.
Here are 5 steps I’ve taken to wrangle the chaos and prepare our family for it’s newest member:
Things can get pretty complicated and even more so when a baby is involved. I’m doing everything I can to simplify the process and our lives, starting first with our routine. The days the boys don’t have school, Tuesdays & Thursdays, we used to fill with activities around town. To be realistic, it’s just not going to be feasible to tote all 3 around the first few months with a newborn, so I’m trying to get them used to the idea now of occupying themselves at home. Once we settle into a routine, we can slowly transition to venturing out. By simplifying our process, I’m looking to take away any additional stress to make everyone happy and for the baby and I to get that bonding and healing time we’ll so desperately need the first few weeks.
2/ Include an Item in Each Room Specifically for Baby
Infants need to be held…a lot. But when they’re not eating, they also sleep A LOT. My plan is to make sure the baby has a safe space in each room of our home to be put down, where he can’t be over-loved by the toddlers. This will include some sort of baby seat, infant swing, and easy access to a wrap for baby-wearing. Let’s not forget the fact that we will be tired, very tired. Exhausted, even. Going into another room to feed and soothe the baby may seem impossible. This time around I’ve decided on the Moses Basket (with a rocking stand) for our co-sleeping set-up in our room. By using the Moses Basket, it makes it easier to carry the baby with me from room to room without disturbing his sleep. I can feed him, then put him down to fall back asleep while I get some things done around the house. I’m hoping this will be a good way to get things done like the laundry, older boys fed, and even some fresh air outside while the baby naps. It’s all about options – OPTIONS, people.
3/ Purge, Consolidate & Organize the Crazy
You heard that right. Get control of the crazy! We just did a major declutter last week, so there isn’t a whole lot more to do. I just want to be able to maintain the progress we’ve already made once he’s here. I carried out bags and bags of things we haven’t used in years and it felt amazing! I consolidated into baskets and made things easier and more accessible for those people that may not know where to find things, ie. my husband (!) and visitors. Let’s be honest, I can’t always be jumping up to grab something for someone, so by having things labeled and in bins that make sense, I’m hoping a lot of things will become self explanatory for those just trying to lend a helping hand. The one major thing that is still on our to-do list is finishing our mud-room closet to be more conducive to those summer days and the challenge that will be back to school. You can see our before situation here and just in the nick of time, our install is scheduled for the week before baby is born. Nothing like coming right under the gun, but well worth it! I’ll be able to relax knowing I’m arriving home from the hospital to a well-organized house and really, there’s no better feeling just knowing you have most of your sh*t together.
4/ Prepare the Older Kids for Baby
Since I found out I was pregnant, I’ve made it my goal to help my toddlers become a little more independent. We’ve been working on getting dressed and undressed, putting on socks and shoes, and feeding themselves. My oldest has always been Mr. Independent, which is just fine, but my youngest wasn’t really ready yet. (see also: 2nd child syndrome) In the 8.5 months I’ve been making a baby, he’s come a long way. We’ve now conquered all of our top 3 expectations and I’m confident that both of my boys will not only be pretty self sufficient, but also a huge help. Still, I know that there is absolutely no way they can fully comprehend the huge change that is about to occur. I don’t think any of us can really wrap our heads around it fully, but I am feeling more confident every day that we will eventually figure it out.
Moses Basket and Swaddle c/o Plum & Sparrow
Last but not least, if not the most important:
5/ Enjoy the Calm Before the Storm
After having a few babies under your belt, it’s easy to become jaded about taking it easy leading up to the birth. I’ve heard many friends say things like, “Relax?! There’s no such thing as relaxing when you have 2/3 kids!” Listen, I get that. The expectation may be there to be super mom and do it all, but there’s something to be said about caring for yourself, too. Giving birth, no matter how you cut it, is a big life altering event. It’s important to take it easy in the last few weeks to mentally and physically prepare yourself for what’s to come. Trust that there will be plenty of time following postpartum for you to run like a chicken with your head cut off. As a matter of fact, now that you’re increasing your brood, I can almost guarantee that you will. Sit back and relax, find a comfy chair, and demand your well-earned “me” time from your family as much as possible. Before you know it, you’ll have another needy little human requiring your full attention around the clock, most likely for the next 18 years. Take the time you deserve, mama!
How do you prepare your home and family for a new addition? If there’s something I missed, I would love to know.
Share with us below!