How to Make the Most Out of the Nesting Phase in Pregnancy

How to Make the Most Out of the Nesting Phase in Pregnancy

Looking down at my pregnancy test to find out I was indeed pregnant for the first time was one of the most exciting moments of my life! Now, with two young kids, it’s so fun to reflect on all the joy and excitement that comes with prepping your home and yourself to bring a newborn baby into this world! (Plus, it means plenty of shopping for all the fun baby stuff!) But as your due date approaches, you may start to feel an overwhelming desire to get your life in order and to finish things you’ve been putting off–-some baby-related and some not! This normally means that the nesting phase has begun! But what exactly is nesting? And how can you make the most out of this newfound energy?

What is Nesting?

Let’s start off with a definition, shall we? For those of you that haven’t had a baby before, you may wonder what exactly people mean when they talk about “nesting”. Nesting, simply put, is the urge many pregnant moms get to prep their home and life for a new baby! As mothers, we have a natural desire to nurture, love, and protect! So it makes sense that we’d want to ensure that our home will be a place of safety and comfort for our little ones as they learn and grow!

Although the nesting phase normally hits in the third trimester, you can experience it at any point in pregnancy! For some people, it lasts a short time, and for others it can last for weeks. So if you’re experiencing a lot of motivation to get stuff done, start making a list of the things you want to complete before your baby arrives. This will often include tasks like preparing the nursery, purchasing any remaining baby items, or getting ready for childbirth! For some, this may also include finishing projects around the house, organizing, and decluttering. Some women may not ever feel like they get a strong desire to “nest”. This is totally normal too! Everyone experiences pregnancy differently!

For me, the nesting phase hit just a few weeks before my due date! I felt a deep desire to wash all my baby's clothes, organize and decorate the nursery, and deep clean my house! However, with both of my pregnancies, the nesting phase ended without notice, leaving things undone that probably should’ve been priorities for me. Because the nesting phase can end abruptly, here are my biggest tips to make the most out of it while you’re feeling motivated!

Nesting Folding Baby Clothing

Tips While Nesting:

1. Prioritize! Ask yourself what things need to get done before the baby arrives and what things can probably wait. Start with those things that are most important to you, because it’s likely that you’ll run out of steam and the nesting phase will end before you accomplish the whole list.

2. Organize your to-do list on a calendar: Once you’ve decided what things are priorities, write them out on a calendar. Start small, and try not to put too much in each day. If you’re having a good day and feeling extra motivated, you can always just add more tasks in as you go!

3. Don’t lift heavy items or climb: Moms are pretty amazing, right? And a lot of us try to be independent and tough even when we’re pregnant. However, it’s important to remember that no task is worth getting injured. Avoid lifting items that are too heavy, as this could injure your back or strain a muscle. It’s best to avoid climbing as well. Our balance is often a little off during pregnancy, which could cause you to fall and get hurt.

4. Ask for help: There are likely to be things on your list that you shouldn’t do alone. Wanting to paint that nursery or move the furniture around? Might be best to wait until your spouse or a friend can help you out! Like I said before, women are incredible. But it’s not worth putting yourself or your baby at risk just to do everything on your own. 

5. Don't try to do too much: Nesting and prepping for your baby should be fun and enjoyable. If you’re starting to feel overwhelmed or anxious, take a step back, and again, ask for help. You don’t need to get everything done! Just do those things that are most important to you, and then give yourself time to relax and rest!

Resting in Pregnancy

Nesting Ideas:

Feeling like you’re ready to get some stuff done but not sure where to start? Here are some of the things I did when I was nesting that helped me feel ready for my baby to arrive! Although everyone will differ in priorities, I recommend starting with baby prep, and moving onto home prep as you get those tasks complete. I also recommend using the nesting phase time to prep for childbirth and recovery as well! 

Baby Prep

  • Install the car seat and have it checked by a CPS tech (If you live in Utah, come see us in store! We have CPS techs that can check your seat installation for you!)

  • Double check baby registry and make sure you’ve purchased everything you need

  • Sanitize/clean baby bottles/pacifiers/breast pump

  • Decorate and set up the nursery

  • Set up bassinet in your bedroom

  • Wash baby clothing/blankets/bedding

  • Organize baby clothing/blankets/toys/other baby gear so that it’s easily accessible

  • Baby-proof the house. (This should be at the TOP of everyone’s list! Although you may not find this to be important since a newborn won’t be moving around yet, your baby will grow quicker than you realize. Getting this done before the baby comes means one less thing to worry about! Read all about how to baby proof your home here!)

  • Order extra diapers and wipes for your storage room

  • Create baby stations throughout the house with baby necessities so that you have what you need no matter where you are in the house (blanket/swaddle, pacifier, burp cloths, diapers and wipes)

Diaper Station

    Prep for Childbirth

    • Write out your birth plan and discuss it with your healthcare provider

    • Pre-register with the hospital/birthing center

    • Consider hiring a doula if you haven't already

    • Read up on and practice relaxation techniques that will be helpful for childbirth

    • Register for and take a childbirth class

    • Pack your hospital bag

    Packing Hospital Bag

      Prep for Recovery/Postpartum

      • Purchase items you need for postpartum healing (If you’re not sure what items you need, check out this article on recovering from delivery)

      • Purchase nipple cream and other breastfeeding items if you’re planning to breastfeed

      • Purchase snacks for yourself 

      • Get hand sanitizer and place it in each room for when visitors come

      • Buy comfortable clothing for yourself

      • Stock up on groceries

      • Make freezer meals


        Prep your Home

        • Dejunk and donate items

        • Organize the most used spaces in your home

        • Deep clean bathrooms

        • Deep clean the kitchen

        • Clean your bedroom

        • Clean out the fridge (that way if friends or neighbors bring you meals, you’ll have space for them)

        • Take care of outdoor spaces (lawn maintenance)

        • Clean up and organize the garage

        • Perform basic home maintenance (Filters need replacing? Appliances need any fixing? Windows need cleaning? Hire someone to come and make sure everything's good to go.)

        • Vacuum the whole house

        • Get carpets cleaned

        • For cold climates: keep the walkways shoveled and de-iced for when you go into labor

        Vacuuming House

          Additional Tasks:

          • Write out thank you cards to those who came to your baby showers

          • Buy extra thank you cards and have them ready to go so that you can write notes and send them to people who help you after the baby is born

          • Go shopping for any last minute baby items

          • If this is your second baby, you may want to prep an activity center that your older children can access for independent playtime when you're busy with the new baby

          • Start a Promptly journal so you can record all the incredible moments along the way (from pregnancy, to childbirth, and beyond!)

            With both my babies, I always loved when the nesting phase would hit. Although I didn’t thoroughly enjoy pregnancy (because who really enjoys the swollen feet, the constant discomfort, and feeling like a whale?), nesting gave me an opportunity to feel like I had some control in a time when I felt like I just wasn’t myself. And as I prepped the nursery and folded those tiny newborn baby clothes, it reminded me of why I was doing this and why it’s all worth it in the end. Because bringing that baby home and having the opportunity to love, nurture and teach that sweet little soul, that's the best feeling in the world. Even with all the hardship that comes with it!

            For a complete guide of everything you can expect during your pregnancy, from conception to birth, check out our post Your Guide to a Healthy Pregnancy. And for more parenting tips, be sure to check out our blog at!

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