Getting your home ready for your baby’s arrival

,Congratulations, you’re expecting a baby! Welcome to one of the most exciting yet daunting periods of your life so far. While the task of mentally preparing yourself to become a parent is one that will no doubt take some time, the challenge of preparing your home is another matter entirely. Have you considered where the baby will sleep, or what you’ll do with your priceless collection of vases once he or she gets here? Joking aside, it’s vital that you spend as much time physically preparing as you do counting down the days until your baby’s due date. Can you honestly say that you’ve considered all the eventualities already? Those first weeks and months of pregnancy are a great time to get odd jobs done, and to prepare your abode for your baby’s arrival; if you’re lucky enough to overcome morning sickness and fatigue in your second trimester, things are about to get very productive indeed.

Do those odd jobs now
Are there any basic DIY projects that have you been trying, but failing to get done for the last few months – or even years? Whether you’d like to decorate the living room, create an en-suite, clear out the drains or renovate your garden, now is the time to get those niggling, odd jobs completed and out of your hair before the baby arrives. You certainly won’t have much time for wielding a paintbrush or stepladder in those early weeks of parenthood, that’s for sure. Take a good look at your home and create a plan; what can you afford to get done in the time you have left? What can wait? Now, put your plan into action and create the family home you’ve always wanted.

Source some clever storage solutions
If you’re going to be turning a spare room into a nursery, there’s a chance you’re going to be losing a big chunk of storage space. Many of us use our spare rooms as dumping grounds, and you’re going to need somewhere else to keep those things you’re not prepared to part with just yet. It’s time to source some clever storage solutions and to look again at your home’s best-kept secrets. Could you convert your under-stair storage any further? Do you have a loft space or garage that could become a home office or junk room instead? At the very least, you should take a moment to think about the ways you store items. Under-bed storage, canvas, and wicker baskets, hanging bins and stackable boxes are incredibly useful ways to store and disguise clutter – you’ll wonder why you’re not making use of such ideas already.

Finish your baby’s nursery
Okay, so your baby will probably spend his or her first six months in your bedroom, but it pays to be prepared when it comes to finishing the nursery; when else are you going to have the time to completely redesign, decorate and furnish your baby’s room to the high standards that Instagram and Pinterest demand? The Internet is filled with fabulous nursery ideas, so take your time to choose a theme, color scheme, and furniture that you really like; neutral colors with removable borders and decals tend to work best, as your child’s nursery can then grow with them as their tastes develop and change. Be sure to purchase your cot, nursing chair, best diaper pails that keeps musty smell, changing unit, as well as storage ahead of time so you can see how it will work in the space you have. A blackout blind, nightlight, toys and baby monitor can follow suit in due course.

Think about your new family’s safety and security
I’m betting that your mind turned to the security and safety of your family unit the moment you saw the positive pregnancy test; as parents, we have an instinctive urge to protect those who are closest to us, regardless of whether they’re here yet or not. Preparing your home to receive the new arrival should incorporate all kinds of changes for the better, including improved security systems, the checking and installation of new fire alarms, and better security on your home network – well, you don’t want any old person seeing the family photographs you choose to store, do you? You’ll also want to think about basic safety precautions, such as stair gates, fireguards, door hinges and outlet covers, squashy protectors for sharp edges, and cupboard locks. Although your new baby is unlikely to crawl straight away, consider moving breakables and hazardous items well out of harm’s way, as well as minimizing trip hazards. It certainly pays to get into good habits now.

Give your home a deep clean
Towards the end of your pregnancy, you’ll no doubt notice a phenomenon known as ‘nesting’; pregnant women often experience an urge to clean and to prepare their homes for the arrival of their baby. So, now is the time for that deep clean. Wash your baby’s clothes with a safe, non-biological detergent and begin the mammoth task of putting his or her tiny things away. Turn your attention to the areas of your home that are often neglected during routine clean-ups, including behind and under furniture, inside and on top of cupboards, and on top of door frames; dust as though your life depended upon it, and hire a carpet cleaner to ensure your floors are ready for a crawling bundle of joy. Now is also a good time to get into the kitchen, and stock your freezer with nutritious, home-cooked meals that you can enjoy when you’re simply too tired to stand.
It doesn’t matter how long you’ve lived there – your house is about to become a family home with the arrival of your first baby. While the task of preparing your home to receive its precious bundle may seem overwhelming in the first instant, there are plenty of things that you can begin to do in stages. How you get ready for baby is up to you, but be sure to rest as much as you can in between.

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