Pregnant and trying to figure out what needs to be done in your 3rd trimester? Here is my third trimester checklist (for our 3rd baby!!) full of things I’m actually doing!
I love making lists. Rishi always rolls his eyes when I tell him I have a list of things we need to get done over the weekend or before a trip.
It’s especially helpful to make a third trimester checklist so other people (like your spouse, etc) are involved and can know what needs to be done so they can help out too!
There’s so much to do before a baby arrives so I’ve broken it out to things to do for the family, things to do for the mom and things to do for the baby. I hope it helps!
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Third Trimester Checklist For the Family
1. A Plan for Other Kids/Pets When Labor Starts
If you have kids or pets you need to figure out what to do with them while you’re in the hospital! You’ll need your main point of contact who will watch your kid(s)/pet but you’ll also need at least one backup!
Another thing to think about is who you want at the hospital or in the delivery room with you (if anyone).
I always have my mom in the delivery room with me so she’s always on call along with my sister who will take our kids while we’re having the baby.
I also keep my cousin, one of our sitters and a neighbor aware of what’s happening in case I need someone who lives close to drive me to the hospital or watch the kids!
I’m an over-preparer with this one because I’m always nervous I’ll be in labor with just the kids at home and nobody to help!
2. Prep Food
Prepping food is something that definitely takes planning but it’s totally worth it. You’ll want to start prepping food a month or two before your due date so it’s not in the freezer too long!
You can check out this post on some freezer meals I’ve made in the past if you want to check that out. I recommend making not just dinner but snacks and breakfast options too.
This time I know for sure that I’m going to prep peanut butter balls, banana spinach pancakes (find links to both of these here) and lots of dinner meals!
*These peanut butter balls from Fit Foodie Finds are not only great for the kids but also great for milk supply!
3. Get School Stuff Ready
If you have other kids in school be sure to be prepared for the first day or stay on top of permission slips, lunch money, etc so you’re not scrambling while in the hospital.
My son started preschool right around my due date with my 3rd so I want to make sure he has everything he needs for his first day in case I’m in labor or in the hospital and his aunt or grandma has to take him!
Third Trimester to do List For Mom
4. Pack Your Hospital Bag
This is probably the most important thing for mom on this third trimester to do list! I start packing at about 37 weeks with things I know I won’t need before we go to the hospital.
I just don’t trust my husband to know exactly what I’ll want especially if my contractions are bad! It also gives me some peace of mind knowing I have some things packed.
You can head to this hospital bag checklist post to see everything I’m packing! Some lists say to pack dad’s as well. I say you have enough on your plate to think about what he needs in his bag! If he forgets his underwear then he can just deal with it. 😉
We live 5 minutes from the hospital so Rishi actually went home the day after both kids were born to shower, bring some stuff home (gifts from friends, etc) and bring me back anything I was wanting (food, clothes, etc).
5. Pre-Register at the Hospital
Not having to fill out paperwork when you arrive at the hospital will be a huge help for everyone! You can just get into your room and get comfortable (and snap some pics like this one haha!).
6. Download a Contraction Counter App
I download a contraction counter app to my phone so I’m able to start using it even if my husband’s not there (or still sleeping). Then as things get more intense I pass on my phone to him to keep track!
7. Have an Idea of Your “Birth Plan”
I say “birth plan” because I think this is something you need to hold loosely. I’ve known numerous moms who couldn’t enjoy the first few days of their baby’s life because their birth plan didn’t go as expected.
You’ll be asked at the hospital what your plan is (epidural, natural, etc). I always say my intention and if it goes that way, great!
I had planned on doing a bath followed by laughing gas and if needed an epidural with Roy and I did about 5 minutes of a bath before I decided to screw it all and give me the epidural!
You just want to have some idea of what your plan is so you’re not trying to figure it out while dealing with contractions.
8. Buy Postpartum Survival Products
I have a whole post here on a new mom’s survival kit but this will get you started!
- Epsom Salt (for sitz baths)
- Lavender Oil (also for sitz baths)
- Gigantic pads or Depends (you’ll get some pads from the hospital but you’ll definitely want a few more as well as different sizes for when you get home)
- Witch hazel pads
- Underwear you don’t mind throwing away (or just getting depends!)
- Peri bottle
- Hemorrhoid Cream
If you’re breastfeeding:
- Washable pads
- Nipple shields for sore nipples (I swear by these)
- This amazing milk saver (especially for those first few weeks while your milk is regulating!)
- Nursing bras and nursing tanks
- Pump bra
9. Get Your Hair Done
This may not be as important if this isn’t your first baby but I had a heck of a time finding time to get my hair done after Roy was born!
If nothing else, you should take some time for you! Get your nails done, get a facial or something nice! Pregnancy is no joke and a little pampering is very much deserved.
Third Trimester to do List For the Baby:
10. Install the Carseat
If you don’t do anything else on this list, you HAVE to do this one. Literally. You can’t leave the hospital (if you drive home) without one!
11. A Plan for After the Baby Arrives
You’ll want to think through things after the baby arrives.
- If you’re having a boy, will you circumcise him? And if so, will you do it in the hospital or wait a little bit?
- Will you attempt to breastfeed?
- Do you want visitors?
- When (and who) will tell family and friends?
- When will you announce on social media (and if you want to do that)?
- Will you hire a photographer to take photos after the birth?
Make these decisions before the baby arrives so you’re not making them on a whim.
12. Clean and Put Away Clothes
One thing you’ll want to do is to clean and put away your baby’s clothes. If you or any of your other kids have sensitive skin, it’s a good idea to use baby laundry detergent so you don’t deal with irritated newborn skin!
I was gifted this laundry detergent with Roy and the smell is so incredible I wanted to use it for everything!
Thankfully we don’t need to buy anything since we have all of Roy’s clothes! I’ve been just going through everything and sorting it out by size and season.
Closer to my due date I’ll wash everything and put it away so it’s all ready for when we come home!
Check out my tips for an organized baby closet post and watch below for my video all about it!
13. Wash + Sterilize Bottles + Pump Pieces (if you plan on nursing)
If you plan on breastfeeding it’s a good idea to wash and sterilize your bottles and pump pieces so you have them ready. I = always go into each birth planning on breastfeeding so I’ll have my pump and everything ready to go.
We like to do this so my husband can do some of the feedings so he can bond with the kids in that way and we can get prepared our first date night! Typically our first date night away from our baby doesn’t require a bottle (I try to plan my feedings accordingly) but I like to be prepared!
One thing I always recommend is to do everything possible before your baby arrives. This includes getting the bottles cleaned and organized so you’re not doing that once the baby gets here.
Baby items take up a lot of space so you may need to rearrange your kitchen a bit to get everything in a cupboard or drawer!
14. Put Together Swing
If you plan on using a swing, get this set up before your baby arrives! You’ll want a safe spot to put your newborn when you get home, especially if you have other kids!
15. Get out DockATot and Rock ‘n’ Play
Like above, we try to have something on each level of our home to use for the baby. I’ll wash the covers and everything before the baby arrives so we’re all ready for him!
Check out my full DockATot review here!
16. Decorate the Nursery!
This is not a necessity but it’s much easier to decorate the nursery when you don’t have a newborn in tow. Don’t let this stress you out though! Do what you can and let it be fun!
Thankfully we already have the bulk of it – crib, dresser, changing pad, chair – so it’s just a matter of decorating it.
17. Find a Pediatrician
Do your research or get recommendations from friends or neighbors. And just know, the one you go to right after birth isn’t the one you need to stay with!
We found one that we loved but his schedule changed so he was only in our clinic one day a week so scheduling with him got hard and he was never there when we went in for not-planned visits.
We ended up switching after Penelope was born to a clinic where we loved all the pediatricians and our dr was there 4 days a week!
I hope this third trimester checklist helps take away some of the stress and confusion on what needs to be done in these final weeks of your pregnancy.
And just know, if you don’t get them ALL done (besides the carseat!) before you have the baby, it’s not a big deal! Don’t stress and enjoy these last few weeks of pregnancy.
Next, head over to my favorite post – the new mom survival kit! These are the exact things I’m using to make my first few weeks with a newborn so much easier and enjoyable!
Thanks for reading and sharing!