There are few moments in anyone’s life more amazing than when you discover that you and your partner are finally expecting. It can often feel as though you’re living on cloud nine for days as you celebrate the fact that, in nine months, you’re going to have a new arrival in your home. Of course, what tends to happen after that is that both of you settle into a rhythm of waiting around for the big day. Sure, there are plenty of this happening in the meantime, an expanding belly and frequent morning sickness is far from the least of them. But pregnancy can often feel like a whole lot of waiting around for your new arrival to… well… arrive! However, you should take advantage of this nine-month waiting period so that you can get as many things ready for your baby as possible. With that in mind, here are just a few things that you should make sure to have ready before your family gets just a little bigger.

Car safety

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It’s kind of crazy just how drastically your relationship with your car changes when you have a baby. When you’re younger, you might love the thrill of getting out on the open road and picking up speed. Or maybe you’ve got an old rustbucket that you’ve owned since you were seventeen. But then, your baby arrives, and suddenly the speeds that you used to drive at seem unbelievably dangerous and your beloved old car suddenly looks like a total death trap! That’s why it’s a good idea to make sure that you’ve got a safe and reliable car to drive before the baby arrives. Not to mention you need to start shopping around as early as possible to get things like car seats. Road safety is always important, but there are few things more important than the safety of your baby when you’re out on the road. You might find it a little obnoxious when you see a “baby on board” sign but the truth is that they serve a very important purpose. They are designed to let the emergency services know that there is a bay in the car so that they can prioritize their safety. Don’t bother with any silly novelty signs, but being able to let people know that you have some precious cargo in the car is seriously important.

Babyproofing

One really common mistake that new parents tend to make is that they assume that they can leave babyproofing for a while since it’s going to be a long time before the baby can even get around the house, right? Well, not exactly. Sure, your baby isn’t going to be particularly mobile for the first few months, but kids grow up fast and when you’re surrounded by the joy and chaos of being a new parent, that time going much more quickly than you’d expect. There are few things more stressful than trying to babyproof your house while also trying to make sure that a curious baby isn’t crawling around getting up to anything dangerous. It’s far easier to get it all done before the baby is even born so that you no longer have to worry about it. The best thing to do is to make a clear list of all of the things in the house that might present a risk to your new baby. If you’re having trouble thinking of things then there are plenty of lists online that you can find which can show you which areas of your house could benefit the most from babyproofing. Sure, you don’t want to spend all of your time panicking about your child hurting themselves, but at least this way you can get on with the fun parts of parenting and put some of your anxieties to rest for a while,

Decorating

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Here’s something that children have a habit of sapping from their parents: energy. You know what takes a lot of energy? Decorating. It hardly takes a genius to be able to do that math here. Since you’re going to be spending a decent amount of time waiting around for your new arrival, why not pass the time by getting their room ready? Painting the walls, getting the cot, and decorating the room, in general, is a great way to prepare for your little one’s arrival and make the time go just a little bit faster. Just make sure that you have plenty of storage in their room. You might not think that you’re going to need it, but babies have a habit of accumulating a ridiculous amount of stuff in the first few years. Sure, you’re almost certainly going to end up having to redecorate your child’s room within a few years but giving them a comfortable and cozy space to sleep and play is one of the best things that you can do for your little ones in the early days. And don’t obsess over knowing the gender of your baby before decorating either. Blue for boys and pink for girls is silly and outdated. Find a color scheme that you like and that will create the nicest possible environment for your baby. Don’t let society tell you how your baby’s room should be decorated.

Clothes and toys

Here’s an important piece of advice that a lot of people don’t tend to know: do not buy a huge amount of baby clothes before your baby is born. That might sound a bit odd, but it’s true. Sure, you want to have some clothes that you baby always has something clean to wear. But buying things for months and months in the future is pointless because you simply don’t know how your child is going to grow. It’s actually a lot easier to buy stuff as they grow. And thanks to online shopping you don’t need to leave the house to do it. Of course, you don’t have that problem with toys so feel free to go nuts and buy as many as you want! If you’re starting to feel as though you’re running a little low on funds then there’s nothing wrong with buying used or getting hand-me-downs from friends and family. Sure, things like car seats should probably be new, but many baby toys outlast little ones by many years so why not try and get a few freebies here and there? One of the most important things to remember when it comes to clothes is not to try and buy a whole bunch of stuff at once. For one thing, you’re never going to quite sure how big your baby will be when it’s born. But you also need to remember just how quickly babies grow. If you buy clothes in a whole lot of different sizes you might think you’re being prepared, but the truth is that you’re really just setting yourself up to have to get rid of a bunch of clothes without them ever actually being worn.

A schedule

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One thing that’s really difficult to understand until you’re a parent is that time just seems to behave differently when you have a baby. You might previously have thought that your days went by pretty quickly but when you’re running on only a few hours sleep and you’re building your day around your baby, it can feel as though you’re living you’re entire life in fast forward and slow motion all at once. One of the very best things that you can do in order to avoid feeling like you’re completely out of sync is to set up a clear schedule between you and your partner. Things, like buying food or cleaning the house, can often go right out of the window when you have a baby. Having a schedule and being able to divide these tasks up can make your life a whole lot easier. The key is to try and support each other and pick up wherever the other has left off. Mum’s will obviously need to spend a lot more direct time with the baby for feedings so dad should take that time to try and get a couple of things done and maybe even get a little shut-eye. Sure, there are always going to be moments where that schedule falls apart, babies don’t work to a timetable after all, but having it in place can be a great anchor for when things seem to be drifting in all different directions.   Sure, there are also plenty of things that you’re not going to be able to fully deal with until your baby arrives, but the more things that you can deal with before that happens, the easier it will be for you to focus your time and energy on getting to know the new addition to your family. Not only that but spending your time getting ready for the new arrival is a great way to ensure that the time goes at least a little bit faster. It can often feel as though those nine months last forever and keeping busy by getting everything ready is one of the best things that you can do.

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