Third Trimester Checklist

You’ve made it through most of your pregnancy, and you’re ready to get started on your third trimester checklist. But, do you really know what things you need to do to prepare for the arrival of your baby?



Don’t worry! I’m ready to help you become completely prepared and confident to bring your baby into this world. Let’s take a look at what things you’ll need to do for your baby, as well as the things you should be taking care of for yourself so you can confidently go into your baby’s delivery.




*This post may contain affiliate links, which means I receive a small commission, at no extra cost to you, if you make a purchase using this link. I only recommend products I love or would personally use.


pregnancy checklist with a pregnant woman



Preparations for Your Baby


Prepare a Space for Your Baby

Not everyone has a space to completely dedicate to a new baby, and that’s totally cool! I’ve done the research to share some of the best baby swings, and nursery chairs for small spaces. And not just that, but have a minimalistic baby space in general.


But, if you have the space to create a room for your baby, now is the time to make the magic happen! Be sure you have all of the furniture assembled and in place because it’s going to get harder to do as you near the end of your pregnancy. Make sure you’ve also unpacked and assembled all of your baby gear. Swings, rockers, bassinets- make sure you’ve familiarized yourself with their functions as well!






Learn how to do Kick Counts

If this is your first pregnancy, make sure you know how to perform a kick count. You are likely used to feeling your baby kick at this point in your pregnancy, but a kick count is a carefully calculated activity. Here are some great instructions to help you perform an accurate kick count!





Evaluate Your Diaper/Wipes Stash

Hopefully, you’ve decided if you’ll be cloth diapering or using disposables by now, but if you haven’t, NOW IS THE TIME! At this point, you’ll want to start building your diaper stash, regardless of how you plan to diaper your baby. Also, make sure you’ve created a small stash of wipes as well. And keep in mind, wipes can be used for SO MANY more things than just diaper changes.





Prepare Your Feeding Necessities

Breastfeeding and bottle feeding, or even a combination will need some sort of supplies. If you plan to bottlefeed, you’ll want to make sure you have bottles, formula (if using formula), a great bottle brush, and nursery water if needed.


If you’re planning to breastfeed your baby, be sure you have breast milk pads, nipple cream, milk storage bags (if storing milk), and a great breast pump if you’ll be pumping and storing your breastmilk.





Ensure you have a Compliant Infant Carseat

I LOVED shopping for our car seat. I loved doing all the research,  going to the store and trying out the travel system, and checking out all the details of my baby’s new ride. Make sure you are familiar with installing your car seat, as well as removing and inserting the seat into the base if required.






Choose Your Pediatrician/Provider

I mentioned shopping, but some people don’t think about shopping around for a pediatrician. I highly recommend that you take some time to ask around and get some recommendations from your family and friends. Be sure you check their insurance compatibility, their views on healthcare, as well as their bedside manner.





Assemble Your Baby Gear

Now is the time to assemble all your baby gear. Your baby bassinet, infant swing, infant play mat, etc., should all be put together and ready to go!





Wash and Organize Baby Clothing/Blankets/Burp Clothes

If you’ve started accumulating baby clothes, blankets, burp clothes, and any other linens, you should start washing them and getting them organized.









Preparations for You


Take a Birthing Class

If this is your first baby, or even if it’s been a few years since your last baby, I HIGHLY encourage you to take a birthing class. My husband and I took a birthing class with our first baby. I was 100% sure we were going to have a un-medicated, vaginal birth, so I wasn’t too concerned with paying attention to the part of the class about assistance or c-sections.


Oh my word, did I make a HUGE MISTAKE! My baby ended up being footling breech, we weren’t able to get them to spin, and low and behold I had a c-section delivery.


All of this to say- take the birthing class and pay attention to EVERY aspect of information, even that part(s) you don’t think you’ll need.






Mentally Prepare for All Types of Delivery

I was one of those first-time moms who knew exactly what I wanted and I had my entire delivery planned… UNTIL I DIDN’T!


It is so great to have a birth plan and know what you want. But, it’s also important to be ready and aware of the unexpected. 






Take a Lactation Course/ Meet a Lactation Consultant

If the thought of possibly breastfeeding has crossed your mind, now is the time to take a lactation course, or meet with a local lactation consultant. I am sure you’re full of questions, and having them answered before giving birth is a fantastic thing to do. It may help you determine what is best for you and your new baby.



If you know you plan to breastfeed, I cannot recommend it enough that you take a lactation course. I have been a breastfeeding mom all along and I took this course somewhere along the way. Even though I “knew what I was doing”, it offered some great insight and new ideas. 



Depending on your learning style, there are two breastfeeding classes I recommend for you to consider. The first is an online breastfeeding class from Milkology. You’ll learn all the basics of breastfeeding while sitting in the comfort of your own space. She has an awesome 5-day FREE breastfeeding course you can take, to see if her courses are the right fit for you!



Another breastfeeding course for new, and especially first-time moms is from Lactation Link. This is another completely online breastfeeding course. You can also take the FREE 6-day breastfeeding course. I recommend you take both free courses and decide which is the right breastfeeding course for you!






Evaluate Your Clothing Choices

Pregnancy, childbirth, (possibly) breastfeeding, and just when you think the “hard part” is going to get better, you try to wear clothes, and NOTHING FITS! *queue the tears*



Learning to love your postpartum body can be REALLY, REALLY hard! I seriously remember looking in the mirror, and thinking that maybe I was confused and I hadn’t given birth yet, because I still looked pregnant. Thankfully, this went away within a few days, but it was still really hard to take as my new reality.



I very much recommend setting realistic expectations for yourself. Be OK wearing your maternity clothes for a bit longer than you planned. Make sure you have some loose-fitting clothing, especially if you were to end up having a c-section. Have some choices for yourself so that you can be comfortable with your new body as it recovers from growing and delivering another human being. I feel so strongly about this, that I wrote an entire blog post sharing some ideas about what to wear after giving birth, and these are my most recommended postpartum pajamas.






Create Your Postpartum Care Kit

In case you’re reading this and asking yourself, “Is that actually a thing?”, the answer is yes! With every birth, I created a postpartum care basket for myself during the third trimester. It was ALWAYS on my third trimester checklist. I knew I needed to make sure I was prepared to take care of myself equally as much as I was ready to take care of my new baby. I will tell you everything you need to know about creating your postpartum care basket.







Enjoy Your Baby Shower(s)

Some people LOVE being the center of attention, and it makes others want to crawl into a hole and hide forever. Regardless of where you find yourself, there are likely people around you who want to help celebrate this new tiny human you’re bringing into the world. SO LIVE IT UP and enjoy being pampered and LOVED!



BUT… if being the center of attention isn’t your idea of a good time, here’s an idea! A friend of mind despises being the center of attention. So for her upcoming baby shower, we’re going to have people leave the gifts unwrapped and hand them off to our mom-to-be as they come to the shower. There will be food, games, fun baby shower music, and some well wishes. If someone wants to wrap their gift, it will be taken home and opened later. Here are some tips for planning a baby shower on a budget if money is tight!






Create Your Birthplan/ Discuss with Your Provider

Even if you’re the “fly by the seat of my pants” kind of person, I recommend taking some time to think about what you want your birthing experience to look like. What are you planning to use for pain management, who do you want there while you labor and give birth, do you want music, what kind of products can be used, are you breastfeeding, do you want to do skin-to-skin, etc. There are a lot of things you should be considering and discussing with anyone who will be present for your delivery.



Then, make sure you’ve communicated all of your requests to the appropriate people. Being in labor really can become an out-of-control experience for the birthing mom, and if you make your wishes known ahead of time, you have a far better chance of getting the delivery you want. Here is my birth template for first-time moms!



If you aren’t sure what you need to ask after having your baby, I highly recommend checking out this post on what to ask after giving birth!






Prepare Your Hospital Bag

Ahhhh, yes, what to pack in your hospital bag?


Every mother has their ideas about what you should pack for the hospital and I am no different. I do think my packing has become more minimal with every baby because I better know what I need personally. If you’re looking for some helpful hints, here are my thoughts on packing your hospital bag.






Visit a Chiropractor for Proper Alignment

Let me first put out this disclaimer that I am not a medical professional, and you should always consult your medical care team before doing anything with your body, especially while pregnant. BUT, if you see a chiropractor regularly, or if you’ve been instructed to by your health care provider, make sure you do it. I have personally experienced the difference of what it feels like to give birth in complete alignment versus not. Being aligned made my delivery so much easier on me and it was so much quicker.





Indulge Yourself in a Prenatal Massage

Again, not a medical professional, so please seek their advice as sometimes massage can put you in early labor. I was blessed to have healthy pregnancies and I thoroughly enjoyed them with each of my pregnancies, minus the one during the pandemic. I love massages in general, but having a massage when nearly everything on my body hurt, was amazing!





Continue completing Your Well Visits

Of course, during this time, make sure you’re still going to all your scheduled appointments and doing the tests recommended by your healthcare provider.






Consider Cord Blook Banking/ Placenta Encapsulation

I personally never participated in either of these, but I know people who have done both. If you’re considering doing either of these activities, please make sure you have made the appropriate arrangments now.






Tour the Hospital/Birthing Center

Part of the childbirth class I took at the hospital involved taking a tour of the labor and delivery wing. It was nice for us to see where we would be hanging out, but it was also nice for my husband to know what was accessible to him.





Learn about Newborn Screening Tests/Procedures

I think I could’ve done a better job of this as a first-time mom. With each delivery, I felt more informed than the last and I felt more confident asking questions and making decisions. If you’re hesitant about anything, you should always ask and be educated before giving your consent to care.






Take Maternity Pictures

I LOVE looking at my maternity pictures. With each delivery my maturity and understanding of what was about to happen changed. I loved adding each of my kids into the pictures as well, as we watched our family grow. Even if you don’t think you’ll want them down the road, be sure to take just a couple pictures, in case you ever want to look back.





Identify Childcare Options

Everyone’s life situation is different. but regardless, you’ll need someone to take care of your new baby. Maybe this is you, your partner, a relative, or you may know you need to find a daycare. Now is the time to do your research and make sure you have your childcare lined up and ready.






I am super passionate about helping new moms feel prepared and confident to give birth. Bringing a baby into this world is a beautiful thing. Being prepared is a game-changer for doing it the way you want. I hope this checklist has given you some pointers about the types of things you should add to your third trimester checklist, so that nothing surprises you.



blessings to you post sign off








MORE Helpful Tips for First-Time Parents

Travel Systems for First-Time Parents

The Best Baby Furniture for First-Time Parents

How to Support a First-Time Dad

Super Helpful Tips for a First-Time Dad




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