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As a mom-to-be, there are so many things to think about and prepare for before your little one arrives. It can be daunting, but it's also an exciting time! Below, DoughMain Financial Literacy Foundation outlines nine steps you can take to get ready for parenthood. Some of the tips might seem like common sense, but it's important to remember them all as you approach your new life as a parent. Without further ado, let's dive into how you can get ready for your new adventure!
1. Start by creating a budget and sticking to it
Parenthood is expensive, and you'll want to be prepared financially. Sit down and create a budget that includes all of your necessary expenses, from diapers and formula to childcare and health insurance. Then, start setting aside money each month to ensure you're ready when the time comes.
If you're not used to living on a budget, it may take some time to adjust. But stick with it and you'll be in good shape when your little one arrives. And don't forget to factor in the cost of a baby shower and any other big expenses that might pop up along the way!
2. Make sure your current home will work
Take a moment to evaluate your current home. Does it provide the space and features necessary to keep your family comfortable and safe in the years ahead? Or is it time to find a new place?
You might be surprised by how quickly you can find a new apartment through online listing sites. These sites allow you to filter your search by price, number of bathrooms, number of bedrooms, and other features so that you only see the options that could meet your needs.
3. Baby-proof your home
If you're planning to stay in your current home, you'll need to take some steps to make it safe for your baby. This process is called "baby-proofing." Here are three essential tips:
These are just a few examples of how you can keep your child safe in the early years. Stay in tune with your baby's personality and tendencies so you can add other baby-proofing measures when needed.
4. Stock up on essentials
Once you have a safe space for your baby, it's time to start stocking up on essential supplies. This includes items like diapers, wipes, and formula. You'll also need to purchase some new furniture, such as a crib and changing table.
It’s also wise to invest in some high-quality nursing bras and other maternity clothing. Nursing requires a lot of commitment, so having quality clothing that facilitates breastfeeding makes a big difference.
If you're unsure where to start, ask your friends or family members who have babies for their recommendations. They'll be able to tell you what products they love and which ones you can live without.
And don't forget to sign up for a baby registry! This will help your friends and family know what items you still need before the big day arrives. Keep these quick tips in mind when planning your baby registry:
5. Buy or borrow a crib, stroller, and car seat
In addition to essential supplies, you'll also need to purchase or borrow some larger items, like a crib, stroller, and car seat. If you're on a tight budget, try borrowing these items from friends or family members. Otherwise, look for sales at your local baby store or online.
You might be surprised by how much you can save by shopping around. Once you have all of the essentials, you're one step closer to being ready for your new arrival!
6. Designate a nursery in your home
If you have the space, designate a nursery in your home for your baby to sleep. This can be any room that's quiet and away from the hustle and bustle of daily life.
If you don't have an extra room in your home, don't worry! You can create a cozy sleeping space for your baby anywhere, from a corner of your bedroom to a closet. Just make sure the space is well-ventilated and free from any potential hazards.
7. Ask family and friends for help
As you get closer to your due date, start asking family and friends for help. They'll be more than happy to lend a hand, whether it's watching your other kids or bringing over a hot meal.
And don't forget to ask for help after the baby is born! You'll need all the support you can get as you adjust to life with a new baby.
8. Make time for yourself
As a mom-to-be, it's important to make time for yourself. This can be hard to do when you're constantly running around, but it's essential for your mental and physical health.
Try to schedule some time each week to relax and rejuvenate. This might mean taking a hot bath, reading your favorite book, or going for a walk. Whatever you do, make sure it's something that makes you feel calm and relaxed.
9. Invest in good health insurance
One of the most important things you can do before becoming a parent is to buy quality health insurance. This will help ensure that your child has access to quality medical care, should they need it.
If you're not currently insured, there are a few options available to you:
No matter what option you choose, make sure you're getting the best possible coverage for you and your family.
So there you have it - nine steps to help you prepare for parenthood as a mom-to-be! Just remember to take things one step at a time, make sure your home is suitable for your new lifestyle, and ask for help when needed. With a bit of preparation, you'll be ready to welcome your new arrival into the world. And don't forget to enjoy this special time in your life -- it goes by so quickly!
To help create a better tomorrow by developing a more Financially Fit America, visit DoughMain Financial Literacy Foundation today!
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