Wednesday, December 28, 2011

What to 'REALLY' Pack for the hospital

This picture is clearly not of me.  You can tell because I would not be wearing those blue pants, I would not take a picture with my belly hanging out and we had more than one suitcase : )  I however can not find the annoyingly staged picture we took of Ryan loading all of the suitcases into the car the morning of delivery... so this is what you get.

Alright ... here we go.  I'm about to air my dirty laundry.  Ok, not really... although with the new baby - there is plenty of dirty laundry to go around.  A few people had asked me before I went into labor what was on my "hospital packing list".  I'm going to share the list - updated with comments.  It's broken down into 2 sections (all were on my original list).  First is the "what I really needed" list and second are the items I didn't end up needing.  I had the original list typed up in a word document months ahead of time (clearly, you know this fits with how I do things) however, we literally packed the night before we went to the hospital to be induced.  For some reason I just didn't want to pack that bag.  I guess I knew if we went any earlier than scheduled, it might mean that something was wrong.  Crazy how much I was dreading packing this bag, yet I enjoyed researching/creating the packing list so much!  Oh well - all unpacked now.  Here we go!

What I really needed: (Keep in mind, I was only in the hospital for about 48 hours total... The original list was written with a c-section in mind and thinking we'd be there for up to 5 days).

  • ð        Hand Sanitizer
  • ð        Bobbypins
  • ð        Tennis Balls in sock (this was used for back massage during contractions - they taught us this trick during birth class)
  • ð        Soft Tissues (little packs)
  • ð        Insurance Information, birth plan, emergency contact info, pediatrician info
  • ð        Baby mittens
  • ð        Baby nail clippers <--- need a baby nail file, not clippers.  Clippers are too much when they are first born, but trust me - you will most likely need to file the nails down and the nurses aren't allowed to do it.
  • ð        Newborn pacifier <--- our hospital gave us 1 and sent us home with one extra when we asked.  The newborn soothies work the best in my opinion and match what the hospital gives.
  • ð        Tucks wipes/pads <--- the hospital gave me these, but it's good to bring just in case they don't give out extra. Prep H wipes would work too.
  • ð        Lotion for me – foot massage (Get it while you can ladies!)
  • ð        Pillow, clothes, blanket for Ryan (he wished he would have added parka to this list!)
  • ð        My pillow, tan pillow, animal blanket (anything that makes you feel comfortable - you'll be in bed a lot!)
  • ð        Extra socks – 3 darker pairs, 2 white (In my research dark socks were recommended because of how messy it can get... I didn't have that problem, but was glad I had dark socks because I walked around in them a lot and who wants to look at dirty white socks! : )
  • ð        2 sets of pajamas <--- comfy with pants is what I recommend.  Those pads don't need to be hanging out!
  • ð        Make-up/shower stuff/toothbrush (anything needed to get ready)
  • ð        Camera/video cam/cell phones/laptop & netbook – chargers for all!
  • ð        Robe and slippers <--- didn't really wear my slippers, but I had on a robe almost the whole time after delivery
  • ð        Underwear and bras <--- my original list had nursing bras on it.  I brought those but didn't use them because I kept the girls locked down in my regular bra as my milk came in.  We're bottle feeding and have been since day one - so the maternity bras were a total waste.  I did hear another mom down the hall ask for something for her bleeding nips... not sure what to pack for that - that was not in my birth plan!
  • ð        Burtsbees
  • ð        Snacks for both – food and drink. <--- the hospital fed me really well and Ryan got one complimentary meal.  If you've heard they don't let you eat once you get to the hospital, it's true.  The only reason I got my turkey sandwich was because they thought it would take me 1-4 days to go into active labor.  Little did they know I knew what I was talking about when I said he'd be born that same day and I still got my Turkey sandwich! : )
  • ð        My own towels
  • ð        Coming home outfit for baby
  • ð        Empty duffel bag for extras from hospital <--- so glad we had this.  We stocked up before we left the hospital
  • ð        Gum/mints
  • ð        Change/cash for vending machines and food
  • ð        Bobby pillow (one from upstairs) <--- this was big to take but so worth it!  We used it almost instantly with the baby during feedings, Ryan used it as a supplemental pillow while we tried to rest and I sat on it on the way home from the hospital to help with the bumps on the road along the way.
  • ð        Newborn diapers (1 small pk) <--- Aiden was 6pds 3oz when we took him home from the hospital.  The hospital only had size 1 diapers and he was swimming in them.  So glad we took these with!
  • ð        Pads with wings <--- again, hospital provides these, but theirs don't have "wings" to help them stay in place ... oh, and the full on resemble a BRICK.  I highly recommend bringing your own - super absorbency recommended (and I had an easy labor) : (
  • ð        Extra lounge pants – black or dark
  • ð        Preemie or newborn outfit (at least one that doesn’t pull over the head) <--- not pulling over the head is important.  Our peanut was so little, I really needed Preemie and only brought newborn.
  • ð        Warm baby blanket for car
  • ð        Dark pillow cases <--- helps the cleaning crew at the hospital know what pillows are yours and what ones are theirs. 
  • ð        Empty box in the car (like a paper box) to help transport flowers
  • ð        Pen and Paper to write notes on or questions
  • ð        List of people to call
  • ð        Coming home outfit for Mel
Things I didn't need off of Original List:

  • ð        Flip Flops
  • ð        Playing Cards
  • ð        Headband
  • ð        Hair Dryer/Curling Iron (my hair is short, otherwise I would have needed at least the blow dryer)
  • ð        Nursing pads (didn't start leaking until my second day home... oh joy!)
  • ð        Maternity bras
  • ð        Baby Lotion
  • ð        Exercise ball (I used the hospitals - maybe check ahead of time to make sure you'll have access to one or plan to bring your own)
  • ð        Magazines (brought them, but things went so quickly - no time to read them.  Had my labor been longer, I probably would have looked at them)
  • ð        Onesies for baby x3 - the hospital provided these and theirs didn't go over the head.
  • ð        Baby book for footprint stamp and ink pad (I had read that a lot of hospitals don't do the ink pad anymore to take their footprints or that they wont do an extra stamp for a baby book. Ours ended up doing it for us)
  • ð        Newborn bottles  (2-3) - our hospital used the little 2oz. premade bottles, so we did not need these.
  • ð        Take out menus - our hospital had a cafeteria that was pretty decent from what Ryan said and Dixon brought him food if he needed it : )
  • ð        Swaddle me <--- we just used the receiving blankets in the hospital. Swaddleme's started when we got home.
  • ð        Sleeper gown for Aiden - stayed in his onesie things the whole time.
  • ð        My baby blanket <--- used when we got home, but not in the hospital
  • ð        Baby powder – for chaffing for me
  • ð        Sensitive baby wipes <--- hospital had these
  • ð        Alcohol swabs <--- hospital had these
  • ð        Depends (Again, I had an easier delivery... this might be different for some people)

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