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What to do on mat leave before baby arrives?!

(115 Posts)
fl0b0t Sun 18-Aug-13 19:19:02

Hi all
I've got 4 days left of work and am getting a bit worried about what people DO on maternity leave before their baby comes? I have a feeling my baby will be late- it's due 17th Sept and I finish work this coming Thursday.

I'm a pretty active person (thought getting more tired and swollen by the second) and worried about being bored- especially if baby is very late! Obviously I know that I'll be slowing down anyway, and that once I've pottered about the house and watched a bit of telly that will be time killed, but I'm so used to doing stuff!

So far my list includes:
-do hypnobirthing (try it)
-swim/walk/cycle (one a day if I can)
-touch up paintwork around the house
-cook & freeze meals
-photography and art
-Bumps & Babies groups

I have already packed hosp bag (had a couple of trips away so had to be prepared), baby room is finished and I think we're pretty much prepared. I do have a few friends with children I can meet up with too.

Anyone got any bright ideas?

(ps I know that relaxing and enjoying my last few weeks of being just a person, not a mummy is really key too)

thanks :-)

Goldenhandshake Mon 19-Aug-13 13:30:43

I ended up 6 weeks on my own before DD arrived because I had so much accrued anual leave to take, by week three I was going stir crazy.

I filled time by going for walks, mooching around the shops, washing all the baby clothes and bedding, cleaning rather obsessively to relieve the boredom and watching absolute shit on tv grin.

This time round I am going to try to work up to 38 weeks and encash any accrued leave instead, DD will be in school then so I will ahve the school run to break up the days at least smile

WhenSheWasBadSheWasHopeful Mon 19-Aug-13 13:51:49

You could get super organised and buy all your Xmas presents ahead of time.
I know it's only August but Xmas shopping with a newborn doesn't sound like fun, even on Amazon

Pachacuti Mon 19-Aug-13 13:56:42

Drink HOT cups of tea/coffee -- you're unlikely to manage much more than lukewarm for a while.

We're in London so I went to lots of matinee plays/shows via the half price ticket booth. And films.

If you have any big heavy books on your to be read list that you won't be able to read while bfing for fear of clonking the baby on the head, read them now.

PedantMarina Mon 19-Aug-13 14:02:29

Yeah, what Suffolk said...

rootypig Mon 19-Aug-13 14:53:37

Ha. Trust me, if you think it's difficult now, wait til you have a baby!

I cycled until my due date, it is actually the easiest way to transport a heavy load - on wheels grin

oscarwilde Mon 19-Aug-13 16:06:10

Start researching /downloading application forms for nursery's/CM's and schools especially if you live in London....

TheHattifattenersBarometer Mon 19-Aug-13 16:07:18

Batch cooking.

Making shopping list on Ocardo so you can press the ORDER button when you are so sleep deprived you cannot think straight.

Sitting in silence with a book and a magazine.

Go to the cinema.

Have as many lazy lunches out with friends as possible.

Enjoy as many lazy Sundays with your DP/DH as you can, lie in bed until noon then go out for a late Sunday lunch.

Drive in the car with the music on LOUD (if that is your thing...babies like a bit of volume but you can't have it on full).

Gather all the things that you will need next your arm chair when you return home with your baby: tissues, lansinoh, burp cloths, lip balm (basically everything that you need so that you don't need to move when your baby is asleep on your lap).

And sleep, lots.

mrspaddy Mon 19-Aug-13 17:01:47

I have had six weeks off... Every inch of house cleaned... Bit of a pain, could start agin. Curtains washed, charity collection sacks sorted.
Wardrobe organising was a big one.. Really tore into it.. Was ruthless and have sored clothes for nursing and until weight loss happens!

I practised baking, lemon drizzle cake etc.

Up cycled a chair for nursery. Love it.

Watched my first box set.. Not usually Tv fan.

Sorted years worth of teaching resources, wedding keepsakes etc.

Made photo books online.. Great to get them done from the sofa ....

Mooched about.. Coffee shops etc.. Bliss

Month worth of dinners in freezer.

niffernaffer Mon 19-Aug-13 17:42:46

They're right you know. SLEEP!!!! Anyone who has had a child will tell you this. You won't get it back for years.......................

hooochycoo Mon 19-Aug-13 18:51:19

do anything you've been meaning to do but haven'y got round to as you won't have the time again for a few years at least

go out after pm at night with your husband FOR NO PARTICULAR REASON

sleep late

go to adult only places

hooochycoo Mon 19-Aug-13 18:57:02

oh and don't bother shopping for your new baby and spending time making things for them, doing up the nursery. spend some money and time ON YOU on decadent things, nice make up, clothesoutifts sorted, capsule wardrobe for next year that you feel good about
, enough toiletires for a year or so, getting your hair done. because soon everything will be about the baby, you'll have baby clothes and things coming out your ears, the things that you spent weeks making and buying and thinking about will be covered in baby poo and puke and grown out of in a sleep deprived instant. and you will be lucky if you manage a shower and a couple of wees a day, let alone looking in the mirror, putting on make or anything for yourself. personally, with a four year old and a one year old, i do my mascara on the bus and use pound shop shower gel, because the kids need shoes and i haven't got time to get three people looking respectable in the morning so i'm the one that gets left out.

rootypig Mon 19-Aug-13 18:59:05

MrsPaddy shock! Can you bottle ome motivation and sell it to me please?

dogindisguise Mon 19-Aug-13 19:02:08

All the above.
Read up about babies and parenting so you have a vague idea what to expect.
If you have a sling practice using it with a doll or teddy.
Research local baby and toddler groups.

dogindisguise Mon 19-Aug-13 19:06:07

I wasn't working for most of my pregnancy with DS1 and didn't do half this stuff. Still have photos from 13 years ago that could do with going into albums.

mrscog Mon 19-Aug-13 19:29:05

I did all the usual cleaning, mooching, visited lots of family and friends etc. but most of all I enjoyed doing hobbies i'd abandoned years ago - piano, drawing, painting etc. I also read a lot, and watched lots of films I'd wanted to see.

It was one of the best 6 weeks of my life! I really don't understand people who say they were going crazy with boredom - really? no hobbies? do you not read? watch films? what would you normally do in your spare time?!

I also did 5 hours of vigorous gardening in a fit of craziness at 39 weeks and did my back in so much that it hurt more than the labour once I was in labour. I would recommend being careful if you do any sudden bursts of activity!

flowersinavase Mon 19-Aug-13 19:40:24


Eat without a little person attached to your boob.


Pee on your own.


Take public transport without it being a huge mission (and without getting daggers from everyone else).


Have sex.


Plan for people's upcoming birthdays/Christmas. Write cards, buy and wrap gifts. Then all you have to do is send them out and people will think you're The Most Organised and Competent Mother Ever.

Playdoughcaterpillar Mon 19-Aug-13 19:42:10

Hypnobirthing is good for making you fall asleep!

butteroneverything Mon 19-Aug-13 19:48:22

I did lots of 'grown up' things in the evenings - meals out, tgeatre, concerts, cinema. Caught up with friends already on mat leave. A bit of batch cooking for the freezer, cleaning, sorting out baby's room. But the nicest thing I did was sort all our years of photos into albums and made photobooks of a couple of special holidays/honeymoon - I think that's what I'm most pleased I did now.

Phineyj Mon 19-Aug-13 20:09:19

Bit of a boring one, but...sort out your finances (especially if you are self-employed or have to do a tax return) as I promise it will be the last thing you have time for once LO arrives!

Also, if there are any friends you haven't seen in a while, especially ones without full time jobs, get in touch now as you need reasons to get out of the house post-baby and catching up over coffee is nice during the day.

lorisparkle Mon 19-Aug-13 20:56:29

I really wished I had had time to get all the meals sorted out for the first month or so and bought lots of things that I could prepare and eat with one hand for in the day.

I did get my hair cut before all three of mine were born which was fantastic.

My first was born on the Tuesday and I finished work on the Friday so I did not have any time to get organised - a big mistake!

Just enjoy!

chickieno1 Mon 19-Aug-13 21:04:39

Good tip about the cards!


Night out with oh

Meet friends



neversleepagain Mon 19-Aug-13 22:46:13

My twins are nearly 11 months old this is what I miss...

Having a daily shower in peace
Cooking dinner at my leisure
Wearing make up
Doing my hair
Meeting friends for lunch/dinner/coffee
Going to the hairdresser/beauty salon
Going on holiday
Weekend lay ins
Going to the loo in peace
Wearing nice clothes
Having time to dress up and get ready (now I am lucky if I get to brush my hair)
Brush my teeth without having to sing to 2 babies

This should tell you what to do before you have no time for yourself smile

ButteryJam Mon 19-Aug-13 22:46:15

Seriously enjoy. Child and stress free days will never come again!

Pachacuti Mon 19-Aug-13 23:06:54

Call up your DH/DP at lunchtime and say "Hey, do you fancy doing [insert almost anything that involves leaving your house] tonight?" and then go out and do it. Because you won't be doing anything that spontaneous again until your baby is old enough to leave home alone...

littleblackno Mon 19-Aug-13 23:17:22

watch tv/ box sets/ films.

cinema (alone is good!)

bikini wax (vain i know)

clean - everything... nesting

batch cooking - was a running joke that there was sooo much food but noone was allowed to eat it!

hair cut

pee alone, have time in the shower, meet friends for lunch/ dinner.

get paperwork/ bills/ finances etc all in order

enjoy the peace!
walk around the shops looking at babies thinking "I'm going to have one soon!!"

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