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Pregnancy – What’s in my Hospital Bag

My bags are packed, I’m ready to go!  Here’s a visual list of what’s inside!






Yes, I’m bringing a lot of stuff.  “Overkill” is my middle name.  I started collecting my labor gear when I was 29 weeks!  This is because a friend I met in prenatal class went into labor at 33 weeks + I freaked out + started getting my bag ready!







When I saw her I asked, “Did you have a hospital bag packed???”.  She didn’t have anything packed because the baby came so early.  But the two most important things she had during labor were: 1) chapstick and 2) her bottle of water.  So you see – you really don’t need much!  My Type A list for the hospital are a combination of things that I put together from lists I got from my prenatal classes, my doula + what I’ve read on the world wide web.  Who knows, I may not use 90% of it, but just to know that I have everything, makes me feel happy.

Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 011) Mouthwash – If I’m laboring + Jeff gets in my face with bad breath, I might punch him.

2)  Toiletries

3)  Toothbrushes

4)  Toothpaste

5)  Body Scrubbers – I’m really anal about having these Japanese scrubbies.  I don’t know how people wash themselves without them.Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 02

6) Hairbrush

7)  Hair ties – very important!  It will make me go bezerk if my sweaty hair is all over the place!

8)  Glasses – which I probably won’t use because they’ll get all fogged up

9)  Contacts

10)  Chapstick – EVERYONE says you’ve got to have at least chapstick.  Apparently your lips get hella dry during labor.

11)  Makeup – Just in case if I’m feeling vain + want to put on a little somethin’, somethin’ when I’m feeling better.  Probably won’t want to bother, but at least it’s in there for the option!Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 03

12)  Toilet paper – weird, but I heard the toilet paper at the hospital is mad scratchy + rough.  Not to be graphic, but postpartum when my lady parts have been seriously mangled, I will be appreciating this.

13)  Massage tools – During labor Jeff will use these, because his hand masseuse skills leave much to be desired!!!  Sorry Jeff, but massage is NOT your forte!

14)  Earplugs – For napping if I happen to be at the hospital for a while + I need to catch a couple Zs

15)  Eyemask – More nappingPregnancy Hospital Bag - 04

16)  Tylenol

17)  Oral Arnica – for pain relief during labor

18)  Bach’s Rescue Remedy – to calm nerves or anxiety

19)  Topical Arnica – To rub on trouble spots to ease the pain of labor.

20)  Emergen-C – a fizzy little pick me up when I’m sick of water.Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 05

21)  Snacks + Food – Yes, I know these have tons of preservatives + sodium!  But I’m going to want something warm + comforting after giving birth!  And the Larabars for energy!

22)  Insulated Cup with Straw – Lots of lists recommended a drinking vessel with a straw.  When you’re in the zone laboring it’s nice to have the ease of the straw, instead of leaning your head back + your birth partner pouring water down your throat.  I got mine at Target.Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 06

23)  Rebozo – a labor tool that aids in relaxation + to help in optimal fetal positioning.  Read more about it here.

24)  TENS electrode pads – My doula has a TENS machine that she will bring on the day.  The machine delivers pulsing electric currents that are believed to treat pain.  I think it might also be helpful as a distraction + to focus on the pulsing as a way to get your mind off the labor pain.  Read more about it here.  I don’t know if it’ll work, but I’m up for trying anything!  I bought these rectangular (not square -they’re too small) pads from Mama Goddess Birth Shop online.  If you live in Vancouver + order online they’ll deliver it to Little Earth (a great baby/kids consignment store) on Commercial Drive for free pickup!  Here’s the link to purchase.Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 07

25)  iPad

26)  Camera

27)  Chargers

28)  iPhonePregnancy Hospital Bag - 08

29)  Gifts – Chocolates for the nurses + a gift for my doula!Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 09

30)  Baby book – for the nurses to stamp the baby’s little feet

31)  Breastfeeding book – just for reference + something to readPregnancy Hospital Bag - 10

32)  Extra Bag – for bringing home freebies the hospital may give me.

33)  Folder – for any documents that I bring to or from the hospital

34)  Pen

35)  Breastfeeding Sign – something I read in my breastfeeding book to have the nurse put on the baby’s bassinet as a kind reminder to the staff.

36)  Birth PlanPregnancy Hospital Bag - 11

37)  Going Home Outfit – Oh yes, my mom made me this wonderful, fleecy, Southwestern pattern gown + I’m going to proudly wear the hell of it when I leave the hospital!

38)  Gowns – bought cheap at the thrift store just in case if they get ruined.  I don’t want to wear the hospital’s gowns + I’m bringing two in case one gets all mucky + bloody.  Sorry, have to say it.  They’re sleeveless for the nurses’ ease at taking blood pressure, or if they have to put me on an IV.  And the bodices are V neck + loose for breastfeeding.Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 12

39)  Robe – to wear if I want to walk the hallways.Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 13

40)  Granny Panties –  super sexxxy.  They say the hospital gives you disposable granny panties + giant maxi pads because you will be bleeding everywhere.  Yaaay.  But I’m bringing two pair just in case.

41)  Socks – Apparently your feet get really cold during labor?

42)  Xtra Large Ziplocs – For putting your bloody gown or panties in.  Yummy.

43)  Nursing Bra – this isn’t really a nursing bra.  I haven’t committed to buying one yet, I’m going to give this Patagonia one I have a try for a little bit.Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 14

44)  Uggs – comfort to + from the hospital

45)  Flip Flops – for if I want to be in the shower during labor.  I’ve read advice from nurses saying that even they wouldn’t get into the hospital showers barefoot.  Fungus.  More yum.

46)  Slippers – I lurve these super fugly Isotoner slippers!!!Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 15

47)  Jeff’s Board Shorts – for Jeff to wear when I need help in the shower.

48)  Change of Clothes for Jeff

49)  Jeff’s Flip Flops – again, the hospital shower = icky.Pregnancy Hospital Bag - 16

50)  Receiving Blanket

51)  Baby’s Going Home Outfit – I packed a newborn AND a 0-3.  Friends gave birth to smaller babies + suggested I have a newborn outfit on hand.  Again, all thrifted.

52)  Baby’s Hat

Okay!!!  That’s all folks!  I heard to not bother packing diapers, nipple pads, maxi pads + certain things of this nature because apparently the hospital will give you some.

If you have any suggestions or additions or anything at all that you found helpful, I’m all ears!  I’d love to hear from you!!!  Ta-taaa!!!

28 Comments Post a comment
  1. There’s things in there I wouldn’t have thought of! Scary…and helpful…and scary…

    March 6, 2014
    • Oh no! Why scary?! Don’t be skerred!!! Hey if you ever want to talk bebes email me! Are you having your year of the horse baby in NZ or in Asia???

      March 6, 2014
      • You know, the whole ‘lady parts getting mangled’ bit, haha. Urggghhhh. Having baby in Hong Kong and then heading back to NZ at the end of the year so she can grow up around grass and fresh air 🙂

        March 6, 2014
      • Yeah, I guess I got a little gruesome + graphic! Haha! Wow I can’t wait to hear about your birth story experience in Asia! Awwww, little baby Kiwi! Yay!!!

        March 8, 2014
      • This is HUGELY specific to the process in Hong Kong (like dealing with the hospitals etc here) but you’re more than welcome to check out my pregger blog

        I’m looking forward to hearing all about your experience too! It sounds like you’re probably have a less ‘no-frills’ experience than ours, haha. x

        March 9, 2014
      • Yahoo!!! I’m looking forward to reading it! Finding out how to navigate around having a baby in Canada is sometimes frustrating – so I can imagine what it’s like trying to have a baby in Asia! Thanks for letting me know – I will check it out for sure!

        March 9, 2014
  2. Wow. Um…what’s a birth plan? Do I want to know?
    Not that I’ve had kids (as I’m sure anyone can tell from the above question!), but when I was in the hospital for a few days, other than earplugs, the thing that I was most glad to have was a blanket from my bed at home – the hospital blankets were thin, scratchy, and smelt like hospital. Not that it looks like you have room to take any more stuff… 🙂 I love how organized you are!

    March 6, 2014
    • A birth plan is a document of your wishes, expectations + preferences for how you would like your labor to go. It’s for your birth team – good especially in the hospital because sometimes they’ll want to give you drugs, hook you up to monitors + things that you may not necessarily need or want. But on the other hand, you may have a birth plan that totally goes out the window because your labor is going entirely in a direction that you can’t predict. Like the baby in distress or the medical need for a c-section.

      I know! I was going to bring a pillow – but I already have so much stuff! I knew you would appreciate my organization! Thanks Michelle! 🙂

      March 6, 2014
  3. Tina Herring(Cacey's sister) #

    I am sure you already have, but make sure to have the car seat installed properly…cant leave the hospital without it!(not in the states anyway!) Here you can go to the fire department or police department and they will make sure it is installed properly, they have officers trained to make sure you have it all strapped in according to factory specs. You are due on my birthday-a wonderful day! Good luck!

    March 6, 2014
    • Yes, we have the car seat installed!!! We did it last week, thank god!!! I called a bunch of fire stations here in Vancouver + they said they don’t help with car seat installations anymore because of liabilities. Lame! Thanks so much for the well wishes + I’ll keep you updated on whether or not the baby is born on your birthday – mine is a couple days after yours!!! Wouldn’t that be the most perfect birthday gift?! Thanks, Tina!

      March 6, 2014
  4. holy f**k, you are seriously ready to go to the hospital! That is some intense planning!

    March 6, 2014
  5. Karen Tustanoff #

    Id hate to see what you bring camping! You are one organized breeder. We are sending all our positive vibes and good energy from the Rockies to you Jeffrey and baby Fayle. We love you guys!

    March 6, 2014
    • You will not be surprised to know that Jeff thought I should be packing my hospital gear into a full size, huge suitcase! As costumers it’s in our DNA to be hoarders, organizers + prepared packers!!! Thanks for the sweet vibes, my friends!!! Can’t wait to see you this summer!!! With the baby!!! Eeeeee!!!!

      March 6, 2014
  6. It’s a military style packing job. Impressive.

    March 6, 2014
  7. HI SHEL,

    March 6, 2014
    • Haha! Working in the film industry you have to be super prepared at all times or you’ll be in trouble! Love you!

      March 8, 2014
  8. kenneth '' Dad's - Papi '' nishino #

    No.#29,…seriously, Nan,…haha…well needless to say U
    took after your Mum, ”Ready Freddy”… Good On U !!!!!
    U definitely R Red-Eye for ‘Baby Fayle’..hoot hoot- oh did
    Mum’s tell U we are grand-parents of not 1,2,3,4, little
    Australian Finches,…amazing stuff, Huh, Take Care!!!!!
    Luv U,
    Miss U,

    March 7, 2014
    • That’s funny dad, because mom said that I took after you with all my preparedness!!! Well, I got the best of both worlds! Love you!!!

      March 8, 2014
  9. Tracy #

    Looks like you thought of everything shelli! All stuff I wish I had packed, but then sent Jason home for after the fact. One thing I liked was my soft fuzzy throw blanket for home– good for that extra layer, and for Jeff if he spends the night on the floor mattress. Take your pillow and leave it in the car when you check in. If you hate your hospital pillow you can always just grab the one you brought from the car. So so excited for you guys!

    March 12, 2014
    • I was thinking blanket + pillow but thought I was being hoarder style + our stuff would take over the hospital room! But you’re totally right – we can keep them in the car! Great idea! We’ll totally do that! Thanks Tracy!!! Any day now…

      March 12, 2014
  10. Sarah Yellin #

    Of course your bags are Pata-Gooch!!
    so glad the socks made it in there.

    March 24, 2014
    • You know it girl! Only the best! Hell yeah those socks made it in there! You’re the best!!! #1 comfort socks on the planet!

      March 24, 2014
  11. Lkap #

    Wowza!!! You mean bizNESS! I thought I packed a lot… I didn’t see deodorant… You may want change for vending machines???

    March 26, 2014
    • You know I do!!! Did I impress you with my anal retentiveness? I don’t even use deodorant! Never needed it! Change for vending machines…..GOOD ONE!!!

      March 26, 2014

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