Tamsin's Pregnancy Must-haves

As I was crawling gratefully into my maternity comfy pants yesterday, I started thinking about all of the bits and pieces we have gathered up over these past two pregnancies to help make life easier. If mama ain't happy, ain't nobody happy! So I rounded up a few of my best "tricks of the trade" for your perusal. And please, if you have anything to add, let me know! I may only have eight more weeks to go, but I still have eight more weeks to go.

A pair of really, really comfy pants. I got a pair of these yoga pants from Old Navy when I was pregnant with Espen, and am still wearing them today. I'd get these pretty early in the game, because you may start feeling bloated and like you can't stand anything like a waistband cutting into your tummy much sooner than you think (for this second baby, I think I said goodbye to regular jeans at about 9 weeks). Because they have a roll-panel at the waist, you can wear them through your entire pregnancy and post-partum. When your belly is small/non-existant, fold the panel down over your hips, when you're nice and round, unfold it for better coverage and support. Confession: I may actually have worn these for the entire two years between pregnancies too. There's also the added bonus that they're just black yoga pants, so if someone was to see me wearing them, I wouldn't die of shame. Oh, and I suppose you could exercise in them too, if you were into that sort of thing. 
Along those lines, I'd recommend getting a pair of good and comfy maternity jeans too.  I personally prefer the full panel ones, because I find that the ones that sit under your belly tend to slide off my hips, which can be a little awkward. These ones from Old Navy (again) are nice because they're not too frumpy, and the panel is made of cotton. I've tried other pants where the panel was made of a silkier fabric, and those also tended to slide off me. Not a great look! They probably won't fit you until you're well into your second trimester, so wait until you need them to buy them.
Long tops. As comfy as those maternity jeans may be, the cotton panel cutting across your belly is not exactly the height of chic, so you will want something long enough to cover it. And ,as your belly grows, to avoid looking like Smee from Peter Pan. I have, and like, this one from Motherhood Maternity, even if it is a ridiculous price for a t-shirt. I especially like the elasticated gathering on either side of the belly, which helps emphasize the fact that I am, in fact, pregnant and not simply a lump of lard. I also like to get my tops in lighter fabrics so I can layer them with cardigans and jackets, and also because being pregnant is a lot like carrying a little oven around with you everywhere. 

Personal care

Top of the list here would be things like plenty of sleep, naps and rest, followed by pre-natal vitamins, drinks of water and foot rubs. Other things I've liked include: 

Burt's Bees belly butter was really kind to me last pregnancy. It smells great, has a nice consistency and smooths on well. While it made my skin soft and lovely, it didn't stop me from getting stretch marks, though, which is probably why I haven't bothered with it this time around. As far as I can tell, either you get them or you don't, and guess which camp I'm in. It was good for itchy, dry skin too, which is pretty common in pregnancy.
If you get crazy itchy skin at any point like I do, I recommend using baby oil gel. I went to see my doctor in a fit of itchy desperation last time, and he told me to get baby oil gel and slather it on like it was my job. I thought he was an idiot who clearly didn't understand how uncomfortable I was, but it turns out that it works really well, and is much less messy than plain ol' baby oil. I think I just got the Target generic brand, and it worked like a charm.
If you can swing it, get a professional pedicure too, and if not, bribe a friend or partner to do it for you. After months of not being able to reach your poor feet (which are probably going to feel pretty sore and achey by now), you will probably be pretty grateful to have your nails trimmed and any dry skin removed. I just had one, and after a summer of barefoot neglect, I feel like I now have someone else's feet attached to my legs. Bonus: it will give you an hour to relax and be pampered, which I think is just what every expectant mama needs. Ooooh, and get a prenatal massage too if you can. 

This and that

A few other things I've found helpful include: 

I haven't read it as faithfully with this second pregnancy, but I found this book very helpful and informative for my first pregnancy. I still keep it on my nightstand and dip into it now and again if I have a question or there is something I can't remember from last time. I liked that it was broken up into one chapter for each week of pregnancy, and gave me relevant information in smaller chunks. It doesn't have very good reviews on amazon, and the main criticism seems to be that it is "fear-based" and discusses risks and potential problems along the way. I personally prefer to feel like I know what to expect, good and bad, so that worked just fine for me. It's also worth noting that it's written by a doctor, so if you don't like doctors being involved in your pregnancy and delivery, you probably won't like this book. 
Just because I haven't been reading a pregnancy book this time, it doesn't mean I don't want to know what type of fruit or vegetable my baby currently resembles! I've been using the BabyCenter My Pregnancy Today app on my phone, and have been pretty happy with it. I like that it sends me a notification when I start a new week of pregnancy, and helps keep me on track. I usually watch the little videos with Espen so he can see how baby sister is growing and developing, which is fun for both of us, even if it does lead to some interesting conversations. I mostly check it about once a week and don't really use the day-today checklist stuff.
This is maybe a little random, but I have really learned the importance of having a good snack stash on hand.  I'm a pretty firm believer that pregnancy doesn't mean that you're literally eating for two, but when you're pregnant you need to eat a little bit more (and if you're nursing, this need will continue) and you sometimes get hungry more frequently than everyone else around you. So I try to keep things like granola bars, fruit, nuts and even a little bit of chocolate or chips on hand to dip into when I need it. I try to not make it a meal, but just enough to keep my blood sugar and energy levels in a healthy place.
A few extra pillows in bed. It's hard to get comfortable when you're pregnant, so having an extra pillow or two around can make all the difference where a good night's sleep is concerned. I usually put one between my knees to keep my hips even (works great to help pelvic pain for me) when I sleep on my side, or if I want to sleep on my back, I pile them up under me so I'm not flat on my back. A normal night's sleep is one of the things I'm most looking forward too - sometime next year, right?

So tell me, what makes your life easier and more comfortable when you are "in the family way"?

Please note: this post isn't sponsored by anyone, because I'm just not cool or important enough to attract that kind of attention. All of the products mentioned are things I have genuinely tried and liked myself, and any opinions are solely my own. 

Images borrowed herehere and here. All others from the mentioned company websites. 


  1. Hey...I've been bugging Ari to get us all together so we can play. Want to??? And yes...I agree with everything you mentioned...and will add a maternity belt to the list.


Post a Comment

Popular Posts