Welcoming a new addition to your family is an exciting journey that comes with a lot of planning and preparation. And creating a safe, comfortable, and nurturing environment for your newborn baby is essential.

They don’t hand out manuals in the maternity ward, but attending NCT classes is a good way to get prepared and meet other couples who will be new parents at the same time. This can enable kindred spirits or at least provide support and contact with people going through the same life experiences.

So if you are expecting a baby, and looking for a guide for soon-to-be parents on nesting to be ready, here is how to get your home ready for the arrival of your little one so you can relax in the joyful postpartum glow. 

baby tummy time
Tummy time is an important part of development for babies

Safety first – childproofing your home

Okay, lets make this clear, worrying about your new baby when first time parents is natural, so it’s good to nest early and prepare for your new arrival. Before your baby starts crawling and exploring, it’s crucial to childproof your home to ensure their safety. Begin by securing furniture to walls to prevent tipping and covering electrical outlets. Look for potential hazards at your baby’s eye level and remove or secure them. Invest in corner guards and cabinet locks to prevent accidents.

Babies are naturally curious and love to explore their surroundings by putting objects in their mouths, so make sure to remove and stay alert for small objects and choose age-appropriate toys. Also, consider enrolling in a first aid course that covers infant and child CPR. Being prepared with the knowledge and skills to respond in case of an emergency can make a significant difference in your baby’s safety.

Window blinds with cords should be replaced with cordless options or tied up, and if you have stairs, consider adding soft padding to the edges and a gate to minimise the risk of falls. A safe environment will provide peace of mind as your little one begins to explore their surroundings.

Also, both the kitchen and bathroom are high-risk areas, so keep cleaning supplies, sharp objects, and medications out of reach in locked cabinets or high up. Install stove knob covers to prevent curious hands from turning on burners. You can also use non-slip mats in the bathtub and place a toilet lock on the lid to prevent accidents.

babies nursery
A nursery should have a cot, chest of drawers, changing table, and a chair for comfortable feeding

Creating a cosy nursery

Designing a comfortable and soothing nursery is a joyous part of preparing for your baby’s arrival, and usually a good way for the father to start to feel connected and part of the process.

It’s likely your newborn will only want to sleep laying on you to feel you close, and won’t spend as much time in their nursery as you think before child, it’s a mental step to welcoming your cherub and if you can pull it off, it’s ideal for nap times which can led to creating a bedtime routine.

Choose a calming colour scheme, comfortable furniture, and soft lighting. Opt for a crib that adheres to safety standards and is positioned away from windows and cords.

Remember blackout curtains to help regulate light and create a sleep-conducive atmosphere. Invest in a comfortable chair or glider for those late-night feedings and cuddles. Personalise the space with cute wall art, mobiles, and shelves for storage. Having a well-organised and cosy nursery will make those early days and nights a little easier.

Must-have baby and toddler essentials

Preparing for your baby’s arrival involves gathering a range of baby and toddler essentials and accessories to meet their needs. Stock up on various clothing, from onesies to sleepers, to keep your little one comfortable in any weather. Nappies, wipes, and a changing table with ample storage are essential for maintaining hygiene.

A good-quality pram that suits your lifestyle and a reliable car seat is vital for outings. For feeding, invest in a breast pump or formula supplies, bottles, and a steriliser. Consider a baby carrier for those moments when you want to keep your baby close while you’re on the move. These essentials will make day-to-day tasks with your baby much smoother.

baby monitor

Babycam’s are a great way to get peace of mind

Electronics for modern parenting

Here’s what no-one tells you, as a new parent you will likely have the urge to check on your baby every five minutes. And if you had a pound for every time you put your fingers close to their nose to feel the breathes or just wanted to see their chest move to know the diaphragm in good working order, their education would be covered.

In today’s digital age, electronics can be a valuable asset for modern parenting. From baby monitors to smart devices, technology can enhance safety and convenience. A high-quality baby monitor with video capabilities allows you to keep an eye on your little one from another room, providing peace of mind.

Consider smart home devices like a Wi-Fi-enabled thermostat that lets you easily control the temperature. Again, baby-proof your electronics by securing cords and placing them out of reach. As your child grows, educational apps and interactive toys can support their learning and development.

baby playing with blocks
Developmental stages for new babies go so fast so it’s good to be ready

Designing a versatile play area

Having a designated play area becomes important as your baby grows into a curious toddler. Create a safe and engaging space where your little one can explore, play, and learn. Soft, washable play mats are ideal for providing a comfortable surface for tummy time and crawling. Fill the area with age-appropriate toys that encourage sensory exploration, creativity, and motor skill development for toddlers.

Low shelves or storage bins keep toys organised and accessible. Consider adding a reading corner with soft cushions and board books to nurture a love for reading from an early age. Designing a versatile play area will foster your child’s development and provide endless hours of fun.

Preparing your home for the arrival of your little one is a labour of love that will shape your family’s journey. Following these five steps ensures that your home becomes a nurturing cocoon for your baby’s growth and exploration. From safety measures to thoughtful nursery design, from essential baby gear to technological aids, each step contributes to crafting a home that radiates warmth and love. Welcome to parenthood, where every day is a new adventure with love and care.

toddler drinks from beaker in high chair
Beakers, sippy cups and plastic kitchenware are needed

What do you need in the home for a new baby?

When preparing for a new baby, there are several essential items that you will need in your home. Here is a list of some of the important things that are worth researching, and some new parents swear by some essentials more than others:

1. Crib or bassinet: A safe and comfortable sleeping space for your baby. You may want to look at ones that can sit alongside your bed.
2. Mattress and bedding: Choose a firm mattress that fits snugly in the crib, along with fitted crib sheets and blankets.
3. Changing table: A dedicated space for nappy changes, stocked with wet wipes, diapers, nappy bags, and rash cream (and the same for a change bag with a travel change mat). A spare change mat is useful if you have the nursery upstairs.
4. Baby monitor: Allows you to keep an eye on your baby while they sleep or play in another room.
5. High chair: Needed once your baby starts eating weaning with mushy or solid foods. You might want a mat to lay underneath as this can get very messy.
6. Baby bathtub: A small tub specifically designed for bathing infants that sits in the main bath.
7. Car seat: A rear-facing car seat that meets safety standards and is properly installed in your vehicle.
8. Stroller/Pram/Buggy: A safe and comfortable way to transport your baby when going for walks, errands, or just to get them to sleep.
9. Nappy bin: A specialized container to dispose of dirty nappies, but I recommend still using nappy bags first, and even then change regularly.
10. Breastfeeding supplies: If you plan to breastfeed, you may need a breast pump, nursing bras, nursing pads, sterilising kit, and bottles for storing milk.
11. Bottle-feeding supplies: Bottles, nipples, formula, and a bottle sterilizer or cleaning brush.
12. Clothes and blankets: Stock up on onesies, sleepsuits, socks, hats, and blankets suitable for newborns. You might want to look at a swaddle as swaddling can be helpful for longer sleeps.
13. Baby toiletries: Baby shampoo, lotion, wipes, and a soft brush or comb for grooming.
14. Play mat: Lay your child down with the dangling sensory items to keep them entertained.
15. Baby swing, walker or bouncer: Provides a safe and comfortable place for your baby to relax and play.
16. Baby-proofing items: Once your baby starts moving, you’ll need to install safety gates, socket covers, cabinet locks (magnetic ones are best), and corner guards.
17. Baby thermometer: Helps you monitor your baby’s temperature accurately.
18. Baby first aid kit: A kit with essentials like bandages, plasters, antiseptic ointment, gripe water for colic, Calpol and medicine droppers. You might want to look at teething gels too.
19. Baby books and toys: Stimulate your baby’s development and provide entertainment.
20. Feeding supplies: Burp cloths, bibs, and muslins.