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A pregnancy planner can be an amazing tool for helping new parents get and stay organized when getting ready for baby. But a lot of people never get the chance to use this game-changing tool because they don’t even know that pregnancy planners exist!
When you research pregnancy organization, most of what you find are checklists (which are great, but why not have all these checklists together in one convenient place?) or full books, like What to Expect When You’re Expecting.
But those aren’t quite what you’re looking for, either. You’re looking for an actual planner, like a day planner for pregnancy. A guidebook, or a handbook that will hold your hand and walk you through every single step of preparing for a new baby.
We’ve got you covered! Let us tell you about the easiest way to prepare for baby that you never knew existed!
Why Use a Pregnancy Planner
You know when people are planning weddings, they order these big, beautiful, organized books that help them keep track of all the details, big and small? When there are so many moving pieces, it’s hard to keep up with everything, and you save your sanity by having it all in one place!
Why don’t we do the same thing when we’re pregnant? Let’s be real here–the stakes are high! Being prepared for a new baby BEFORE they arrive and usher in a whole new level of sleep deprivation–it’s game changing.
Your life will be so much easier for having done everything you need, strategically prepared your home, and really being ready for a baby.
This is where a good, organized pregnancy planner becomes such a game changer.
- Not sure if you’re finished making your registry? Refer to the checklists in your planner.
- Don’t know if you’re packing the right things in your hospital bag? Your pregnancy planner will tell you!
- Confused about when you need to choose a pediatrician, talk to your insurance company about adding baby to your plan, or pre-register at the hospital? Good news! There’s a planner for that.
A well-organized pregnancy planner gets rid of all this confusion, overwhelm, and anxiety. It tells you what you need to know, when you need to know it, and gives all the best advice on how to effectively accomplish each task.
What a Pregnancy Planner Does Not Do
While there’s so much a pregnancy planner can do to support you through your early parenting journey, there’s one thing a good pregnancy planner does not do: it doesn’t tell you how to parent.
A pregnancy planner or organizer makes things easy on you, and that usually includes suggestions for products you might need, organizational tips you might enjoy, and more.
But it isn’t meant to tell you how to parent. A good pregnancy planner will tell you about breastfeeding and bottle feeding, cloth diapering and disposable diapering, preparing for sleep with a variety of methods.
A good pregnancy will meet you where you are and help you become the best version of yourself as a parent–but it should not attempt to do any of the parenting or decision-making for you!
When Should I Buy a Pregnancy Planner?
The best time to get a pregnancy planner is whenever you feel ready. We know women who buy planners the day they get a positive pregnancy test, and others who wait until they’re well into the third trimester.
Our suggestion is to buy a pregnancy planner by around week 24, but unless you’re expecting to pop within the week, it’s not too late to get a pregnancy planner.
The beauty of a pregnancy planner is that it’s organized in a usable way, so if you’ve already completed your baby registry, you can skip that part and still get plenty out of the planner.
But if you buy a pregnancy planner early, we suggest only using the sections meant for early pregnancy. Remember–these books are meant to get rid of your overwhelm, but if you look at every single to-do item all at once, you will feel overwhelmed.
So when you do order your planner, check the table of contents, see what the different tabs say, and start where you are. The rest will come in time!
The Best Pregnancy Planner
If you’ve been around for a while, then our answer won’t surprise you, but if you’re new here, we’re about to tell you about something you likely never knew existed.
The best pregnancy planner you can find is Expecting & Organized: Pregnancy & Newborn Baby Planner.
This amazing planner is the brainchild of an overwhelmed mom who desperately wished someone had told her all the things she didn’t know she needed to know. And yes, that mom is me!
Why I Created Expecting & Organized: Pregnancy & Newborn Baby Planner
When my son, Jack, was born, I felt blindsided by how unprepared I was, despite having everything I’d been told I needed. I was afraid to plan much for Jack’s birth because I’d lost 4 pregnancies prior to that point, and it was hard for me to trust that he’d actually be born safely.
But even still, I forced myself to plan–an experience that overwhelmed and exhausted me. I searched for all the checklists, checked every product’s safety rating, read thousands of product reviews. My home was ready and organized–or so I thought.
Then he came home, and I was flooded with overwhelm:
- How was I supposed to eat when I had no free hands during the day? I was starving!
- Why did no one tell me how to know which cream to use for his diaper rash?
- How was I supposed to use all these postpartum care products people had told me to buy?
- I’d spent weeks choosing the right car seat, but I wouldn’t take him anywhere in it because it took too long to get out the door, and I wasn’t sure how to manage both Jack and a cart somewhere like a grocery store.
There were solutions to all of these problems, and the thousands of other ones that came up. But no one had told me about them. No one thought about them because we block out those confusing, awful moments, and we don’t like to talk about how parenting doesn’t just “come naturally.”
The Expecting & Organized pregnancy planner was the solution.
How I Created the Best Pregnancy Planner
I set to work to support other mamas in a way none of the books, checklists, or well-meaning friends or family had done for me.
First, I brainstormed every problem I remembered having, and I crafted a solution that worked for me. Then, I talked to other moms, especially those who were still pregnant and in the early days with a new baby.
- What problems were they experiencing?
- What were they embarrassed they didn’t know how to do?
- What was stressing them most?
- What one tip helped them most?
After brainstorming, interviewing, planning, and organizing, I did what turns out to have been the most integral next step–I brought other moms with different experiences into the creation process.
One such mom, in particular, had just had her third child, so she had plenty of wisdom to share. She helped me design, organize, and structure the entire planner, so we could get it ready for testing and make it the best we possibly could.
Then, we started testing it–getting it into the hands of expecting moms and getting their feedback before and after baby.
Finally, after almost 18 months of labor, my planner baby was born.
Now, with the help of new moms, we update it at least once per year, ensuring you’re getting the best advice, tips, and product recommendations possible!
What’s in a Pregnancy Planner
Our pregnancy planner is a tabbed guidebook, just like your day planner, that guides you to the appropriate sections to meet you where you are. This way, you can understand what needs to be done now without worrying about what needs to happen later.
It’s everything you didn’t know you needed to know, along with all the checklists you knew to look for. Everything you need to know is in one easy-to-use place, so you can always keep up with where you are in the planning process and whether you’re forgetting important things you need to do.
Talk about sleeping better at night!
Here’s a brief sampling of what you can expect to learn:
- How to build a baby registry including baby registry must haves & what you don’t need
- Preparing for baby checklists with information for preparing your home, nursery, car, hospital bag, paperwork, and more!
- How to write a birth plan, and how to prepare for the fact that things may not go as planned
- Our unique, 2-bag system for packing the best hospital bag–our hospital bag checklist!
- How to choose a baby name
- When to go to the hospital for labor
- And so much more!
From the essential checklists to ensure you have what you need when you need it to the down and dirty on what to expect during labor, delivery, and postpartum recovery; here’s a glimpse at all the goodness you will find inside:
- What to expect during delivery no matter how you deliver
- Sh*t no one tells you about recovering after birth – we care about caring for you, mama!
- Exact gear & items you need for baby – including our favorite brand recommendations and pro tips
- Brilliant ways to get organized before baby by creating useful stations around your house, making freezer meals, handling all the boring paperwork, and more
- Know exactly what to pack in your hospital bag using our 2-bag system
- How to be an empowered patient to have a good pregnancy and birth experience
- Ideas for involving family and friends so they can actually help
- Step-by-step plan to ask for and accept help when you need it – and you will need it
- All things mental health so you never feel alone & know exactly where to turn if you need help
- Tips for bringing a baby home from moms who’ve been there – including resources on diapering, feeding, sleep, and more
Expecting & Organized Reviews: What Other Moms Are Saying
I can talk about this incredible pregnancy planner until I’m blue in the face, but the reality is, I created it, so you expect me to think it’s the best on the market, right?
But I’m with you–I care what other moms think too! Here’s what they’re saying.
“This planner is everything that I hoped it would be and more. As someone who has a lot of anxiety around new experiences and uncharted territory (which pregnancy, birth, and motherhood all are for me!) this guide has taken so much guesswork out of the process. UndefiningMotherhood has really thought of everything – topics that have been swirling in my brain and ones I hadn’t even thought of yet. I definitely recommend for all first-time moms!” -Kristin S.
“I am a freak when it comes to checklists, I love being able to mark stuff off. Not only does this have checklists for every step of pregnancy and getting ready for baby, it is so informative! It gives you reasons you would want to do certain things and why certain items may be useful! Definitely the best pregnancy purchase I have made!” – Sammie
“It’s one of the most useful books I’ve picked up so far and I love that I’m able to personalize it to my exact experience.” -Sarah K.
“As a first-time mom, this planner has been so helpful! There are things in here that I didn’t even realize I needed to think of.” – Alexis W.
“It is worth the INVESTMENT. Everything thats in the book is effective. It gives you structure and even checklist to complete task . . . so good that you really don’t need a doula . . . My anxiety went down instantly!” – Brianna
“Being pregnant can be overwhelming and this book definitely helped ease some of my stress. I’ve always been a planner and love to have practical lists to help me feel organized. This planner does exactly that and has so much useful information for things to focus on while getting ready for your little babe. Very glad I purchased it!” – Chelsea
Pregnancy Planner FAQ
A pregnancy planner is a book that helps you stay organized as you prepare for baby. It has checklists, helpful information, pro tips from experienced moms–everything you didn’t know you needed to know to prepare for baby, all in one easy-to-use place!
Using a pregnancy planner will help you stay organized while reducing stress about the planning process. You’ll know you have all the information you need at your fingertips, and you can use it to feel confident you haven’t forgotten anything important.
A pregnancy planner is meant to help prepare for baby, so we don’t recommend getting one after baby is born.
Did you use a pregnancy planner to get ready for baby? Tell us about your experience in the comments!
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Katy Huie Harrison, PhD, is an author, mom, recurrent miscarriage survivor, & owner of Undefining Motherhood. She lives in Atlanta with her husband (affectionately known on the internet as “Husband,”) son (Jack), and dog (Charlotte). She believes our society puts too many expectations on women that make womanhood and motherhood restrictive. Her goal is to shift the paradigm about what it means to be a woman and mother, giving all women a greater sense of agency over their own lives. You can find Katy and her work featured in places like CNN’s Headline News, Romper, Scary Mommy, Demeter Press’s Motherhood and Social Exclusion, & more.