& What I Intend To Do
With just 10 weeks until baby’s due date, I’m starting to think more and more about how our lives are going to change when baby arrives. It dawned on me as I sipped my juice and chatted to my husband over pancakes at The Ivy Café. I looked around and realised there were no babies there. In fact, there were no babies in prams on the street either. Ever since that observation, I’m increasingly aware that taking babies to some places is just not going to happen. Well it might but it won’t be as easy. Dan and I aren’t going to have the same care free, do as we please life that we’ve enjoyed together for the last four years.
I’ve been paying more attention to the advice people are giving me. My sister, Louise telling me to make the most of dinners out. My sister in law, Lucy telling me to be prepared and lovely Philippa reminding me to enjoy the rest and ‘me-time’ while I can. It got me thinking about how I’m going to spend the next ten weeks. I decided to come up with a little checklist.
# 1 Preparing Mat Leave Work Plans & Comms
Now that I’m self employed, there’s no one to write handover notes for. No one to cover my work. As a blogger writing about my personal likes, fashion loves and life matters it wouldn’t make sense for me to get a ghost writer. Instead it’s down to me to plan in advance the content, images and brands that I’ll be working with. I’m coming up with a plan to schedule content to go live during my time away. The beauty of self employed flexibility is that I’ll work whenever I do get a moment to do some work. Whether it’s 3am or 10pm, I can do it.
# 2 Organise Baby’s Things
I’ve already written a list of everything we have for baby. From the clothes to the blankets and numbers of nappies. Although there’s still a huge ‘to get’ list, it’s comforting knowing that I’m being organised. Knowing what goes where, the clothes are divided into sizes. I’m sure when it’s 4am and I’m changing baby’s nappy, vest and whatever else that I’ll appreciate being able to grab the nearest clean suit.
# 3 Ensure Finances Are In Order
I’ve made no secret that I’m fiercely financially independent. Although married, I find it awkward and difficult asking Dan to pay for something. Asking anyone for anything actually. I know, it’s a strange issue! But when a baby is coming and given that I’m self employed, there’s no denying that the pressure of making dollar bills is going to bring up a few issues that I’ll need to be flexible on. So Dan and I will sit down and go through our finances and work out the best solution to fund baby (and me) when I’m not working. I can’t bear to think of him giving me ‘pocket money’ but I’m sure pooling our resources and a solution to suit will be easy.
# 4 Focus On Me
I’ve read on so many forums that now is the time to watch that box set. To watch those films and read those books I’ve always longed to read. When baby is here it’s not going to be easy to find the time to do that. So I started (and finished) Girl Boss on Netflix. I’ve ordered ‘Man Repeller: Seeking Love, Finding Overalls’. I’m going to finally get round to watching Wonder Woman in the cinema. I’ve started investing in pregnancy massages once a fortnight (I only wish I’d started earlier) and long soaks in the bath are becoming my norm.
# 5 Packing my bags
I’ve already made my list of hospital bag essentials. It even includes muslin clothes and lavender oil. What I actually need to do is get round to buying my hospital bag and the items to go in to it! I saw a really useful tip that once everything’s in the bag, take it all out and get your husband to repack it. So he’ll know where that headband is when you’re hot head is frustrating you and obviously he’ll know where he’s put the Dairy Milk.
# 6 Tidy floors, tidy home, tidy mind
If only it were as simple for us as giving our floorboards a quick wipe. Nope. We’ve decided to go all in and reconfigure our entire home to make space for another bedroom. We have booked the builder, ordered the new bathroom and are ready for our old kitchen to be ripped out to make space for a baby room. We will have the entire dining room floor pulled up to put in a new kitchen in a different place. All to be completed within 4-5 weeks. I know we’re crazy but it’ll be so worth it. She says.
# 7 Pre wash baby clothes
With a new washer/dryer and new utility space, the nester in me is desperate to start washing every item of baby clothing before baby wears it. When baby is here I know I’ll have very little time to be putting on constant streams of washing so having all this prepared before hand is like my dream come true.
# 8 Post baby wardrobe
Plenty of baggy t-shirts, a good nursing nightie and some soft cashmere clothes are a must. Especially for any new mum who wants to stay indoors and inhale every ounce of their new born. I know I’m not going to give birth and magically snap back three stone lighter. So I fully intend on spending Sept – Dec with my new babe, in comfortable lounge clothes and lots of flat shoes.
# 9 The Baby Book
Super late to the game but I’ve just ordered my baby book from M&S. In the last two weeks I’ve started writing an in depth diary every evening to reflect on the day (great at helping with anxiety). It got me all motivated to buy a baby book. I can’t wait to stick in those scan pictures and document it’s every move (I’m obsessed). Imagine when baby is old enough to flick back and read through the notes.
What advice do you have for spending time before mat leave? Xx