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We have all heard of “nesting” that all expectant mothers do,  where they start cleaning and stocking up to get everything ready for their baby.

The mothers spend all their time getting ready for baby by making sure everything that might be needed by the baby is available at their house.  As well as making sure the house is scrubbed top to bottom.

Many times, they end up forgetting something just as important – the non-baby essentials they need to stock up on before the baby’s arrival!

Most often “nesting” occurs in the third trimester.  One little last burst of energy before your baby arrives.

Make sure to create a list of all the possible non-baby essentials you need to get, for yourself and for the house.

It doesn’t matter whether if this is your first child or your third, you need to be prepared in advance.

Once your baby is born you will be so happy that you stocked up on these essentials to help you avoid needing to go to the store. 

You won’t be wanting to leave your house, but instead will want to spend all your time snuggling your new little one.

Large maxi pads

You will want these right after you give birth, you get your period and your body has no pity at all! You will experience heavy bleeding as soon as the baby is out, whether you have a normal delivery or a c section birth.

This period may last for a couple of weeks and you’ll want to be prepared with pads at home.

Since it’s been awhile since your last period, you might have a little bit hanging around (or tampons instead of pads hanging around – you really want to use pads right after birth), but you for sure don’t have enough for this postpartum period.

The hospital I delivered at sent me home with these huge, awful gauze underwear (haha, I had to take a picture of them and send it to my sister) and non-adhesive pads to go in these.  They work for sure and since your period is so heavy it’s nice having these gauze underwear that you can just throw out.

I’ve had several friends suggest depends for the first couple days postpartum and then changing over to pads after that initial heavy period has had a chance to slow down.

If your hospital doesn’t supply pads after your birth, make sure to pack some in your hospital bag.

Large underwear

Right after having your baby your stomach won’t automatically be the same size it was before you got pregnant.

You can wear the underwear you wore when pregnant (I did) or stock up on some slightly larger than your normal size.  Make sure to have underwear that will accommodate the large maxi pads.

Hand soap

With a new baby it seems like you go through a TON of hand soap!

From guests who come over and wash their hands before picking up your baby to washing your hands after every diaper change and just the normal hand washing throughout the day.

While we are on the topic of hand washing – make sure you have your guests wash their hands before holding your little one.  Your baby’s immune system isn’t fully developed – and even with the antibodies that you pass to your baby through your breastmilk he/she can still be susceptible to getting sick.

The last thing you want is a sick baby, especially one so young.

Paper towels

So, my household isn’t big on paper products.  We use cloth napkins or towels in place of paper napkins and towels when possible.

But, I always try to keep some paper towels around and especially after just having a new baby.

Sometimes I don’t get my laundry done in a timely manner and I might need some paper towels to get me through my “just surviving” a newborn phase.

Paper towels are usually super absorbent and their large size really help in ways you might not imagine.

Toilet Paper

Why you need to stock up on toilet paper does not need much explanation.  Make sure to have enough to last your household (plus extra guests) for at minimum a couple weeks, but preferably a month.

For us, this would be about 1 of Costco’s Kirkland brand packages of toilet paper.  I would probably stock up on two just to be positive I won’t be running out anytime soon.

Personal Care Items

Make sure you have enough personal care items you use on a daily (or weekly) basis to last you about a month.

These personal care items would include:

  •  Shampoo
  • Conditioner
  • Toothbrush (if you think you might need to replace yours)
  • Toothpaste
  • Razer/shave cream (if you think you will really have the energy to shave)
  • Soap/body wash
  • Q-tips
  • Make-up

Add anything you personally use.


While I personally don’t use wipes very much, I will admit that having wipes around is super handy and if you don’t have some homemade wipes you will want to stock up on some wipes.

Preferably something that isn’t toxic, so I would suggest 7th generation or another non-toxic brand.

Wipes will help you if you haven’t had a chance to clean the bathroom or another place around the house and you have guests coming over.  You can just do a couple quick swipes with your wipes and you are good to go.

Dishwashing soap and dishwasher soap

You won’t want to run out of dishwashing soap.  Make sure to stock up on a couple extra bottles/containers.

Laundry detergent

So you will be doing a bit more laundry with your new little one’s arrival, especially if you are using cloth diapers.

Many babies spit up quite a bit.  Sometimes, requiring both the person holding the baby and the baby as well to need a change of clothes.

There is also the chance of leaking diapers, so you might have your baby’s clothes to change from these.  Or the leaks might be on bedding.

So make sure you have a little bit extra laundry detergent around.


You might be surprised at just how hungry you are if you decide to breastfeed.

Stock up on some easy to grab healthy snacks.  You will be very glad you did this.

And if you have older kiddos, make sure to stock up on snacks for them that are easy for them to get for themselves.

Without fail you will be feeding your baby and your older kiddo will need a snack.  If they are able to get the snack themselves that will help you out a lot.  Even if they can go get the snack and bring it to you to open while you are feeding the baby.

Freezer meals

You will thank yourself if you stock your freezer before you are due.

I did this with my second two kids and I was so, so happy I did.  I found the first four months were tough and my babies were all fussy right around the time I would need to start to prepare dinner.

Having something already made where I just needed to throw it in the oven and worry about throwing together a salad or some other side dish.

I made sure to have some breakfasts, lunches and dinners in the freezer.

I used a service when I made my freezer meals.  It was really cool, I would pick what meals I wanted to make and it would pull together a shopping list and figure out how to prep it to be the most efficient.  The service was Once a Month Meals.  I would use the service for a month and do a HUGE cooking day and then cancel before the next month.

The other thing I did to get my freezer full of meals was to double or triple when I was making other meals, such as spaghetti sauce or mac and cheese. This allowed me to have another few meals in the freezer that I didn’t have to specifically make.

Kitchen staples

It’s great to also be stocked up on kitchen staples.

If your baby is sleeping when it’s time to prep dinner, take advantage and throw something you can make quickly on.  You can save one of your freezer meals for the next night.

Also, make sure to have a lot of plastic wrap, foil, ziplock bags and trash bags stocked up.


Make sure to have some backup batteries of the main ones.  AA, AAA and if anything uses D or C as well.

Seems like you always run out of batteries when you are least expecting it, so make sure to stock up so it doesn’t happen right after your baby is born.

Last words

The first few weeks with your new baby will be survival mode.

Having these non-baby essentials will help things be less chaotic.  You won’t need to run to the store for small items if you already have some stock-piled at home. 

Non-Baby Essentials to Stock Up On