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Preparing for Motherhood: Packing Your Hospital Bag | Frugal & Simple

Preparing for Motherhood: Packing Your Hospital Bag

Guest post by Kara from Notes from the Nest

What to pack in your hospital bag?  If you’re pregnant, you know exactly what I’m talking about – it’s the all-important bag you bring to the hospital when you’re having a baby. If you’re not pregnant, you probably know someone who could use this information – share the love!

I originally wrote about this topic on my blog,Notes from the Nest. Rather than compiling a comprehensive list* or relying on my own experience, I asked several new-mom friends for some out of the box ideas. Perhaps the most valuable thing they’d brought to the hospital, or what they wished they’d brought. Here’s what they said:

What to pack for Mom:

-A nursing pillow (Boppy, Breast Friend, Blessed Nest, whichever you choose) will be VERY helpful. I’d almost say it’s an essential, especially when you and baby are trying to figure out breastfeeding.

-A journal or laptop to record the amazing events. You think you’ll always remember, but a little sleep deprivation makes the clearest memories blur. Write it down!

-Comfy clothes – enough for up to four days, just in case you have a c-section. A robe or zip-up hoodie, so you’ll have easy access for nursing. Maybe in dark colors in case of leaks. You may also choose to wear the hospital gowns the whole time, that’s what I did, so they could do the laundry. But better to have the option of your own clothes if you want them.

What to pack for Baby:

-Not much! The hospital has diapers, wipes, toiletries, onesies, hats, and sleep sacks for your new baby to use.

-Going home outfit: You’ll need to wash it at home before-hand, so you might want something gender-neutral if you don’t already know the sex. Or just bring one blue and one pink outfit, and pass the unused one on to a friend. Strange as it sounds, consider a preemie size. My friend Melissa and I, both with 8-pound babies, found the newborn size to be too big. Bring along a newborn size, too, just in case your baby is 10 pounds!!

What to pack for Dad/Labor Partner:

-Pillows for sleeping – the hospital usually provides an uncomfortable couch-bed, but extra pillows help make it a little more tolerable.

-Lots of snacks and a 12-pack of pop or juice so that you’re not spending baby’s college fund at hospital vending machines.

General tips:

-There are 2 schools of thought on packing– either one ginormous suitcase that holds it all, or whatever bags(s) you want to pack plus one empty bag to hold gifts you receive while in the hospital.

-Keep a list of the things you want to throw in your bag at the last-minute.

-Don’t forget chargers for phones, camera, laptop, and the USB cord to connect your camera to a computer for downloading new-baby pics.

-Ideas to celebrate the birth with your visitors: Bring a birth-day cake or champagne/sparkling juice and glasses. Bring some sheets of scrapbook-style paper to imprint the baby’s footprint, then have guests sign it in the hospital or the first few days at home.


Now it’s your turn- what else should be packed  for the hospital? What can be left out?


*Lots of others have prepared very complete hospital packing lists. A few of my favorites are from Baby Center, Babyzone and The Bump.

Kara is a stay-at-home mom to 2-year-old Tate. Her blog Notes from the Nest is about her adventures as a first time mom!

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