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Random Acts of Kindness for Moms

Random Acts of Kindness for Moms

Did you know that next week is Random Acts of Kindness Week? We know how hard moms work taking care of everyone around them, so we’ve put together some Random Acts of Momness to help you treat the other deserving mamas in your circle. And hopefully you will get some love in return when they #MomItForward!

1. Coffee Kindness: Put a little pep in your friend’s step by swinging by with morning lattes for two! Spend a few minutes catching up with a mom buddy you don’t see often. While you’re there, grab your calendars and set up a lunch date later this month. If you don’t live locally to your coffee-obsessed friend, shoot her a Starbucks gift card via email.

2. Care Package S.O.S.: Do you know a mom-to-be, a new mom, or someone who could just really use a little pampering? Mail or hand-deliver a care package with some indulgent goodies like chocolate, herbal tea, some bubble bath, and a good book. Check out Earth Mama Angel Baby for mom-specific care packages for pregnancy, postpartum, and beyond.

3. Babysitting: The gift of babysitting for a friend’s solo mission to Target or for an evening date night is one of the best gifts you can give, and it costs nothing but your time! You can make a cute coupon or card for your mom-BFF to redeem, or just shoot her a text that you’re available to watch the kids the next time you know she’s got plans in the works. She may resist or insist that it’s not necessary, but reassure her that you truly want to give her the gift of a break. She deserves it!

4. Make a Meal: Something as simple as bringing a meal to a new mom (or a not so new mom) can be a huge weight off her shoulders. Bonus points if you make enough for leftovers that freeze well! You will forever go down in her personal history books as a lifesaver.

5. Pay It Forward: You know the scene. You’re five minutes behind and so is everyone else in line for coffee. Why not tell the barista that the next car’s drink is on you? You might even spark a kindness that lasts for the whole morning rush! Not into coffee? You could do this at lunch or even at the grocery store if you spot a parent juggling a toddler and a meal off the salad bar.

Share your own Random Acts of Momness ideas with us so we can add them to the list!

What kindnesses will you shower on the moms in your life? Tell us in the comments and let us know who has done something kind for you lately!

Tags: moms

Non-Toxic Valentine’s Day Crafts

nontoxic valentines day crafts  

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with your little ones with these sweet non-toxic DIY crafts. We’ve got ideas for everyone from babies and toddlers to preschool and school age kids. You may need to come up with cards or goodies for your kiddo’s classroom, and homemade gifts are always a hit. Valentine’s Day is coming soon, so now is the time to get crafty!  

Non-Toxic Crafts for Kids
Sometimes getting your hands (and, unfortunately, your table) a little messy is the best part of crafting! These hands-on crafts for preschoolers and toddlers keep things safer with non-toxic ingredients.

 
  1. DIY Crayon Hearts: Melt down broken non-toxic crayons and cool them in a heart-shaped mold to make DIY Crayon Hearts with this tutorial from Dagmar’s Home. They make great class Valentine’s Day gifts and any extras are fun to keep and use around the house! 
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  3. Non-Toxic Finger Paint: Whip up some non-toxic (and edible, though not particularly tasty) finger paint using cornstarch, water, and food coloring with this recipe from The Imagination Tree. And check out Color Garden for plant-based food coloring without artificial ingredients. Babies and toddlers can finger-paint a special Valentine for family members, and bigger kids can even go crazy and use a paintbrush!
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  5. DIY Clay Heart Recipe: Sculpt and bake with this DIY clay recipe from Instructables. Cut out hearts or other shapes with cookie cutters or go free-hand. When they are cool or hard, let the kids decorate the finished product to make a one-of-a-kind valentine.
 

Paper Valentine’s Day Crafts
These ideas are all made with paper. Construction paper, scrapbook paper, plain old white paper, you name it! Bring out the safety scissors and get to work creating an adorable valentine with your kiddo.

 
  1. Paper Chain: We love this take on the classic paper chain from Teach With Me, turning paper strips into Valentine’s Day hearts to make a garland for your home or play room. Kids can cut strips from colored construction paper or card stock and can even decorate them with stickers or markers for an extra festive touch. 
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  3. Paper Bead Necklace: This paper bead necklace from Sowdering About is a cute way to add a pop of color to tide your little valentine over until spring is here! Let your little one pick their favorite colors or patterns using scrapbook paper or colored construction paper. 
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  5. Collage of Love: For older preschoolers or school-age children, help them put together a collage of pictures from all those parenting magazines you haven’t taken to the recycling center yet. For a fun Valentine’s Day twist, ask them to make a collage for someone special, using pictures that make them think of love and friendship. You can even make smaller collages and then fold the paper to make individual cards. This tutorial from Molly Moo Crafts uses watercolor paper and paints for a mixed media collage that will make a fun and unique valentine!
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  7. Button Heart: For this super cute button heart craft from Hands On As We Grow, you’ll need a large piece of construction paper in the shape of a heart, your favorite non-toxic glue, and buttons! Start by having your toddler sort the buttons by color and then let them pick their favorites to decorate their heart.
 

Valentine’s Day Boxes
If your kiddo is in a classroom that does a Valentine’s Day party, they might need a crafty mailbox to collect their friends’ notes and treats! We rounded up these DIY Valentine’s Day box ideas for you and your kids to choose from.

 
  1. Basketball Box: A basketball hoop box is perfect for a child who loves sports and is made with a shoebox, a smaller cardboard box, a pipe cleaner, string, and electrical tape. This crafty mom from All About Ty & Ashlee did a great job using items on hand while the family was snowed in to pull this off! 
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  3. Classic Mailbox: This Valentine’s Day mailbox, modeled after a real USPS mailbox, is so adorable. It takes a little execution work but the finished product is just perfect, complete with a working mail chute to accept Valentine’s Day cards and treats. Check out the You’ve Got Mail(box) from Camp Clem. 
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  5. Heart Garden Box: Finally, this Heart Garden Valentine Box from Buggy and Buddy is one that kids of any age can help with. Little hands can paint the box, glue paper grass, and decorate hearts. Paint your child’s name on the side for a final touch and you’re good to go!
 


Share the LOVE With Us!
We’d love to see photos of your kids’ DIY Valentine’s Day crafts, so please share with us. Let us know in the comments below which craft you’ll try first.

Crib Mattress Naughty Or Nice List

Crib Mattress Naughty or Nice List

We’re sure you have your work cut out for you this holiday season when it comes to Santa’s naughty and nice list, but have you put your baby’s crib mattress to the test?

The Crib Mattress Naughty List

 

When it comes to your baby’s safety, we will never compromise. That’s why we never use anything in our baby products that could put us on the naughty list. Keep an eye out for the following common materials used in baby products.

Polyurethane Foam: Lullaby Earth crib mattresses and accessories are made without polyurethane foam, including soybean or bio-based foam, “eco” foam (which are polyurethane foam made with soybean oil), and memory foam. Polyurethane foam is very flammable and therefore contains flame retardants, which are also on our naughty list.

- Flame Retardants: We don’t use any flame retardant chemicals or chemical flame barriers.
 
- Antibacterial Biocides
 
- Allergenic Materials
 
- Formaldehyde
 
- Glues or Adhesives
 
- GMOs
 
- Perfluorinated Compounds (PFCs)
 
- Pesticides
 
- Phthalate
 
- Plasticizers
 
- Vinyl/PVC

Our Breeze breathable crib mattress also avoids some naughty breathable mattress pitfalls:  

- Non-Waterproof Mattress: A non-waterproof crib mattress that allows air to pass through the whole mattress might be “breathable,” but it’s also not sanitary. Urine, spit-up, and other messes can drip through the mattress and lead to bacteria and mold growth.
 
- Hard to Clean Mattress: Some breathable mattresses are hard to clean and need to be thoroughly washed and dried for hours, which is an inconvenience to parents and leaves babies with nowhere to sleep.
 

You and your baby can rest easy knowing that Lullaby Earth crib mattresses and accessories don’t use any of these naughty-list components.

The Crib Mattress Nice List

 

Now it’s time for the good news! Lullaby Earth’s safety priorities mean that your baby will enjoy the gift of a safer, healthier night’s sleep.

Here’s how Lullaby Earth Crib mattresses make the Nice List:

- Food-Grade Polyethylene: Our crib mattresses feature a lightweight core made of food-grade polyethylene for superior firmness and support. Our patented waterproof surface is also made from food-grade polyethylene. Polyethylene is one of the safest plastics available and is even recyclable in proper facilities. It’s what food storage bags are made of and is widely used in the food industry. Lullaby Earth now sources plant-based polyethylene made from non-GMO sugarcane.
 
- Waterproof Surface: Our patented waterproofing keeps the crib mattress (and your baby) safe from contamination due to diaper messes, spills, and spit-up. We recommend a waterproof crib mattress for superior hygiene and easy cleanup and convenience for parents.


- Firm, Flat Support: A crib mattress should be firm and flat to reduce suffocation risk. Softer foam mattresses may sag and are far too soft for babies to sleep on. Keep things on the nice list with a firm, flat mattress.
 
- Breathability Done Right™: The Breeze breathable crib mattress pad gives the gift of safer breathability without sacrificing hygiene like the breathable naughty list above. A washable breathable pad over our waterproof crib mattress means a safer, more convenient solution to breathability. Check out our Breathability infographic for more facts.
 

We’re on lots of other Nice Lists too, including several awards and certifications. We’re MADE SAFE™ Certified, which means we don’t use any materials known or suspected to cause harm, and we’re also certified to the GREENGUARD® Gold and Formaldehyde Free standards. Lullaby Earth is recommended by organizations such as Healthy Child Healthy World and the Allergy Kids Foundation. Learn more about our awards and certifications.

Is your baby’s crib mattress on the naughty or nice list this year?

Dr. Edwin Simpser on Crib Mattress Breathability

Crib Mattress Breathability

Dr. Edwin Simpser, Assistant Professor of Pediatrics at Hofstra-Northwell School of Medicine, has reviewed the Lullaby Earth Breeze mattress and we’re excited to share his conclusions with you!

Dr. Simpser compared our Breeze mattress to other breathable mattresses that are considered “breathable” because the baby can breathe into the interior of the mattress. He found that the Breeze is just as breathable as these other mattresses and provides a safer approach to breathability. These “breathe into the interior” mattresses are designed without a waterproof surface, which opens them up to hygienic issues. If the mattress is not waterproof, then inevitable baby accidents and messes will lead to bacteria and mold growth. If your baby can breathe through their mattress interior, then they will also be breathing in this contamination.

In order to keep a “breathe into the interior” mattress as clean and hygienic as possible, parents need to set aside regular time to completely wash out the mattress in the shower and leave it to dry for several hours. This is a time-consuming process that leaves your baby without a place to sleep for hours at a time.

Dr. Simpser says, “A far safer approach to adding ‘breathability’ to a crib mattress is to keep the mattress hygienic and to add a breathable layer between the baby and the mattress, as is done with the...Lullaby Earth designs.” A waterproof mattress with a breathable pad is how Lullaby Earth does breathability right!

Read Dr. Edwin Simpser’s full review here.

Crib Mattress Breathability Done Right

At Lullaby Earth, baby safety is what we’re all about. That’s why we continue to bring you the most updated baby products, like the Lullaby Earth Breeze Crib Mattress. The Breeze system combines the safety of a firm, flat waterproof crib mattress with our breathable mattress pad. The pad is machine washable for easy bedding changes and cleanup!

Safety plus breathability. Now that’s breathability done right!

Get the facts on how to do breathability right:

Crib Mattress Breathability Done Right

How The Breeze Breathable Crib Mattress Works

Breeze Breathable Crib Mattress

When parents find out they are expecting, it is overwhelming and exciting to start planning for the new arrival. There is so much to read about pregnancy, birth, and all the babyproofing that needs to happen in your home. There are so many baby things to buy. There are so many colors to pick from when you paint the nursery. And of course, there are so many things to consider when it comes to safety for your new baby. 


When it comes down to selecting your baby’s crib mattress, we wanted to make sure we could offer a safer, more practical mattress that doesn’t sacrifice aesthetics - so we made the Breeze!

Available in five colors (white, grey, green, blue, and pink), the Breeze’s attractive design gives you a safer sleep option to match any nursery decor.

Breeze Breathable Crib Mattress Colors

How does the Breeze work?





You know it’s cute, but how is it safer? We’re glad you asked!


Gray Breeze Breathable Crib MattressThe number one safety consideration when you’re choosing a crib mattress is actually NOT breathability. It’s a firm, flat surface. Once you have an appropriate crib mattress, you need to make sure to keep it clear of all soft bedding (like blankets and pillows) and soft toys. These pose a suffocation risk to your baby. A firm, flat crib mattress with no soft bedding is the number one thing you can do for your baby’s safety in the crib.

The Breeze is built with this practical, safer design in mind. A flat, firm surface along with reinforced edges make sure that the mattress does not sag or become soft over time. The mattress is also waterproof to protect against mold, mildew, and bacterial growth that can occur if the inside of a mattress is compromised by urine or other liquids. The Breeze is designed with these practical safety features before we even begin to discuss the added feature of a breathable surface.

The breathable design of the Breeze breathable waterproof pad maximizes airflow between your baby and their crib mattress, for a cool and comfortable sleep that reduces overheating and sweating. The breathable waterproof Breeze pad is also waterproof and machine washable, which keeps your Breeze mattress clean and hygienic. While you are washing the pad, you can put your baby back to sleep on the waterproof mattress.

Is my baby safe without the breathable pad?


Breeze Crib MattressIf breathable is so great, why do we say that you can put your baby back to sleep on the mattress without a breathable pad? Good question! Remember, the SAFEST crib mattress is one that is firm, flat, and free of soft bedding. The Breeze achieves that with or without the mattress pad. All of our crib mattresses are made from safer, healthier materials than are most other traditional crib mattresses. That’s why Lullaby Earth was founded and it’s what we do best: provide a safer mattress.

Some have suggested that it’s best to create a mattress that is entirely breathable, allowing the baby to breathe through the entire mattress. This is actually an impractical idea that could introduce dangerous new risks and hassles. Without a waterproof surface, the mattress can quickly become a breeding ground for mold and bacteria. The interior of a fully breathable mattress is difficult to sanitize and wash properly - and while you’re washing it and letting it air dry, where is your baby sleeping?

At Lullaby Earth we recognize that the best way to keep baby and parents happy is to provide an overall safer mattress. The mattress itself is hygienic and easy to keep clean because it has a waterproof surface that keeps mold, bacteria, dust mites, and other potential hazards away. The mattress is flat and firm, so even without the Breeze pad, you can lay your baby down to sleep knowing their mattress is designed for safety.

With a Lullaby Earth crib mattress, you don’t have to worry about potential allergens like soy or latex, questionable chemicals like flame retardants, or lack of firm support for your baby. The Breeze simply adds extra peace of mind to an already safer mattress.

We designed the Breeze for the best of both worlds: a functional mattress to provide the ultimate in safety and comfort for baby, as well as convenience for mom and dad with its easy-to-wash removable breathable waterproof mattress pad. Remember: It’s the baby that needs to breathe, not the mattress!

Pregnancy Checklist: Fourth Trimester

The fourth trimester? Yes, it’s really a thing! The postpartum period is commonly referred to as the fourth trimester. It is a time to be gentle with yourself and your new baby as you adjust to life after birth. Celebrate it, enjoy it, and for goodness’ sake, don’t stress about your pre-baby pants right now.

Read entire article.

Pregnancy Checklist: Third Trimester

Third Trimester Pregnancy Checklist

You’re coming down the home stretch now, in the third and final trimester of your pregnancy. Soon you will have a squishy baby to snuggle! Keep your mind’s eye focused on the prize at the end, because you probably feel about 150% ready to give birth right now. Ready for this trimester’s checklist? Read on!

Third Trimester Pregnancy Checklist: 

 
  1. Fight the Pain: If something doesn’t feel right, ask your doctor. Genevieve from Massachusetts says, “Round ligament pain in the third trimester is not just something you have to suffer with. There are things to help the pain: Use a stretchy waist binder on your lower hips while you are being active, don’t push yourself, sit on a yoga ball, get help from someone when you sit up from a laying position, and look into physical therapy.”
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  3. Say No: If you don’t feel up to spending time with friends or other plans, it is okay to say no and reschedule. This goes for any trimester but is especially important for your last weeks, when you might be feeling very tired. Also, don’t feel bad about defending your belly from people who want to touch it.
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  5. Rest More: Take naps when you want them, go to bed early, and get as much rest as you can. Pippa from the U.K. says, “It seems at the time like you’re wasting time you could be prepping for the baby but it is so vital to rest, especially if you end up in a labor marathon for hours!”
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  7. Pamper Yourself: Terra from TX says, “Enjoy the glow! In your last trimester, buy some makeup and go get pampered. Your feet are swelling. You’re aching. Go get a mani/pedi and have your hair washed at a salon.”
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  9. Finalize Your Birth Plan: Work with your OB/GYN, midwife, or doula to finalize your birth plan details. What are your decisions about epidurals, membrane sweeps, induction, and other interventions? Be open to a plan B or things not going exactly how you expect.
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  11. Remember What EDD Means: Back in the first trimester, your provider calculated an estimated due date. Remember that this is an estimate. The EDD gives you a rough idea of when to expect your baby, not an expiration date. Keep in touch with your provider if you are concerned. (Read more on due dates and term definitions here).
 

You might think the journey’s over once the baby is here, but next up is a checklist for the fourth trimester. It’s a time of adjustment as you and your new addition get to know each other. Stay tuned for our next post.

What advice can you add? What words of wisdom would have made your third trimester easier?

Stay tuned for our next post about postpartum care and the fourth trimester. You can also catch up on the first trimester and second trimester checklists we’ve already shared.

Pregnancy Checklist: Second Trimester

Pregnancy Checklist: Second Trimester

Hooray! You’re through the first trimester of pregnancy. Things are moving along now and you’re starting to get that cute baby bump. Here’s our next checklist, full of second trimester tips.

Second Trimester Pregnancy Checklist:

Stay in Touch with Your Provider: Your OB/GYN or midwife can indicate if you need any additional tests during pregnancy or if you have any risk factors to keep an eye on. Be fully informed on every test and procedure.

 
  1. Moisturize: Keep your growing belly moisturized with a high quality product like Earth Mama Angel Baby Natural Stretch Oil. Keeping your skin hydrated helps you reduce the itchy feeling of your growing belly. Worried about stretch marks? Some women don’t get stretch marks at all and those that do are prone to them genetically. Lotions can help, but the only thing that can really minimize them is not gaining too much weight too fast.
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  3. Decide on a Gender Reveal: Are you going to find out the sex of your baby? This trimester is the time you can find out! If you do NOT want to find out, be sure to tell your provider and the ultrasound tech to keep the secret so they don’t let it slip or give clues during your appointment.
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  5. Research Maternity Leave: Dig out your employee handbook and find out what your maternity leave policy is like. When you are ready, announce your pregnancy to your employer and begin planning for your maternity leave.
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  7. Be an Adult: When the baby comes, your life is going to change. Take advantage of pre-baby time by scheduling a “babymoon” getaway with your partner, going out for a late movie, or enjoying other things that you won’t be able to do with a newborn.
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  9. Be Gentle with Yourself: Heather from TX says, “Don’t beat yourself up if you’re functioning differently: less endurance, lower libido, difficulty doing certain tasks. This applies during ALL trimesters.”
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  11. Keep Eating and Drinking Water: You need extra calories in pregnancy, and morning sickness usually subsides by the second trimester so you can start eating normally again. And remember to stay hydrated! Keep in touch with your care provider to monitor your hydration and nutrition.
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  13. Develop Your Birth Plan: Working with your OB/GYN, midwife, or doula, develop your birth plan. Are you planning to birth in a hospital, in a birth center, or at home? Do you have a backup plan? Have you toured hospitals and birth centers to choose the right one for you? 
 

What advice can you add?
What’s your number one piece of advice for mamas-to-be in their second trimester?

Stay tuned for our checklist on the third trimester, coming soon! And review the first trimester checklist if you missed it.

Pregnancy Checklist: First Trimester

Pregnancy Checklist: First Trimester

Congrats, you’re pregnant! Now what? We asked moms for their best advice and we’ve made a checklist of tips and tricks for your first trimester.

First Trimester Pregnancy Checklist: 

 
  1. Choose a Provider: If you don’t have an OB/GYN or midwife lined up, research care providers in your area or ask your family doctor for a referral. You might also consider hiring a doula. Julia from Georgia says, “Make sure you’re fully informed about all your medical decisions.... You have to get a care provider who listens to you.”
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  3. Get a Checkup: Visit your care provider for recommendations on quality prenatal care, discuss any medication changes you might need during pregnancy, and discuss family history of any pregnancy or birth complications. Using the date of your last menstrual period, your doctor or midwife will be able to calculate an estimated due date. 
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  5. Drink Plenty of Water: You need to stay hydrated throughout pregnancy. Ample water intake helps keep the kidneys in good shape to filter waste from your body, reduces the risk of UTIs, and can also help with swelling and fatigue. Ask your doctor for the ideal level of water you should be drinking.
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  7. Prepare for Morning Sickness: Not every woman will experience morning sickness, but if you do it’s possible to identify foods or smells that trigger more nausea and sickness. Keep a journal of your symptoms and if they happened after you encountered a food or on an empty stomach. Sarah from New Jersey advises to discuss “your prenatal [vitamin] with your doctor if you are having lots of morning sickness. I switched mine to a whole food prenatal and my morning sickness went away.”
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  9. Eat Healthfully: Morning sickness might make eating anything seem impossible, but do your best to eat a healthful diet with fresh produce and whole foods. Keep healthy snacks on hand to reduce morning sickness from having an empty stomach. Pippa from Cardigan, U.K. says, “Listen to your cravings. If you want it, you probably need it.” Cravings for non-food items should be discussed ASAP with your doctor, as they may indicate a mineral deficiency.
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  11. Keep Moving: It is generally safe to continue a level of fitness and exercise that you had before pregnancy. If you don’t already have an exercise regimen, prenatal yoga or gentle prenatal exercise programs can help boost your mood and energy during pregnancy. Always check with your practitioner to confirm an exercise plan that is safe for you.
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  13. Rest: Genevieve from Massachusetts says, “For all trimesters, REST. Especially the first trimester. You’ll be exhausted, and so tired, and it’s because your body is making a human. So even if you feel like you didn’t do anything strenuous, and you feel like you need a nap, take a nap. Your body is working hard right now even if you don’t feel it.” 
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  15. Prep for Swelling: Unfortunately, you will experience swelling during pregnancy. Keep an eye on any rings you wear and do yourself a favor now and buy a bottle of this spray to help reduce swelling on, ahem, tender areas throughout pregnancy and postpartum. 
 

What advice can you add?

We can’t pack every piece of good advice into this list, so share your insights with our readers. What did you wish you knew about the first trimester?

If you missed our Before Pregnancy Checklist, check it out now! And stay tuned for our next post about the second trimester.