The Baby is Here! What do I take??
Getting the call that your baby has arrived is the best, most stressful phone call that you will ever receive. Unless you are one of the lucky ones where everything is planned perfectly and the stars happen to line up and allow that plan to happen, you will hang up and begin to frantically pack everything that you have bought and leave your adorable nursery with a new ransacked look. To help our clients’ transition smoothly and more importantly quickly from the house to the hospital, we do provide a detailed checklist of essential items to our clients. However, we thought we would share the baby basics with our devote blog followers, too.
If you plan to drive, everything is a little easier and the items needed of course are the same. However, if you intend to fly there are some considerations. For adoption #1, my husband and I drove. This was the cheaper form of travel, but honestly, I was ready to get home and traveling for 16 hours with a 6-day old infant was not one of the picture worthy moments. Therefore, for adoption # 2 we flew. Most airlines to allow infants to fly; however, some are stricter than others by enforcing ‘a must be a least 7 days old’ to fly. While this might make adoptive parents hesitant, let us assure you, even if your airline chooses this rule, we would almost bet that your baby would be beyond 7 days when you are granted ICPC approval, so no worries. Of course, we must mention the importance of what is free and what is not – don’t pay an unnecessary fee, we have a backup plan. Airlines will allow each child under the age of 2 to check a car seat and a stroller free of charge; however, there is a fee for pack-n-plays. The good news is that you don’t really need it. The hospital will of course take care of your precious little one while there. If you are released from the hospital, but not ICPC ready yet, then you get to experience the exciting hotel life with an infant. If you are like me you will stay in the hotel forever because if you leave for even a second, some stranger will automatically be drawn to you and want to “ooh aww” and touch your newborn! Do yourself and your baby a favor and stay in the room. Most hotels gladly provide a crib or pack-n-play and all the necessary bedding. If they don’t have one available, don’t worry (yes, I tend to worry about everything)! You can either use a dresser drawer or a laundry basket (extended stay hotels provide these)- then put a pillow with a blanket over it- this will provide a safe sleep environment at just the right size for your little one.
Again, I tend to worry about everything, so my initial reaction is to pack the entire nursery! This is not only a little crazy, but also unnecessary. The hospital will provide EVERYTHING that the baby needs. If you want to bring baby clothing for the hospital stay, that is fine but again unnecessary and it is also dirty laundry that you wouldn’t otherwise have to take care of.
Items that you will need when you leave the hospital for your hotel stay or just your trip home include:
-Wipes-unscented are best for sensitive skin
-Pack for the season, but sleepers are a must have even if it is summer
-Thick blanket for cooler temps
-Onesies are not just adorable but practical for quick, easy diaper changes
-One bottle (and that is enough for a short trip! You can wash it and reuse; trust me, you don’t want to pack more than one!)
Items that we suggest you hold off buying until after you leave the hospital include:
1) Formula- although your parental instincts will kick in quickly, let the hospital guide you on the best formula for your baby. Whatever they choose there is a reason and they are great to send you on your way with travel formula.
2) Pacifiers- this is another item that should you should wait on. My experience is that the hospital usually uses the brand Philips Avent Soothie Pacifier. I love pacifier babies and bought so many, literally embarrassed to tell you how much money I spent on “I love mommy” and “my daddy rocks” pacifiers. Both of my children wanted the hospital, super boring pacifier and will still accept nothing else!
Once you match on your adoption journey or even if you are crossing your fingers for a drop-in situation, we suggest that you get (or are) prepared because, let’s face it, babies come on their schedule, not ours. And for yourself, pack super comfortable clothes, not the cute ones from Dress Up and Loft, because you will be heartbroken when they inevitably become a burp cloth. 😊