Getting ready for a new baby’s arrival is both fun and a little stressful. You likely have already done your research and decided on your parenting style. There are plenty to choose from, including intuitive parenting (a flexible approach). You have also probably had your baby shower and gotten most of the baby gear you need. Your next step is to find a place to put all those gifts. These tips will help ensure that all of the baby’s things are ready when they arrive.
Sort through the gifts
You likely have received some baby shower gifts that the baby will not use for a while. If space is tight in the nursery, you will need to find an appropriate storage space for the walkers, jumpers, toys, and clothes that the baby will not be using for months. Intuitive parenting tells us that babies will let us know when they are ready for those playmats, assistive sitting devices, and more.
A good rule of thumb is to look at the box that the baby equipment came in, there should be an age label somewhere on it. Use that information as your guidelines for what stays out and what you put away.
You can start your intuitive parenting right from the start by deciding whether your baby needs electronics in their life at six months. Intuitive parenting is focused on engaging with your child. For example, let’s say one of the gifts you received is the complete DVD set of “baby genius” learning videos. Intuitive parenting tells us that these “learning tools” can be helpful at the right time, but they should not take the place of parent interaction, especially in the very early stages.
Once you have things sorted into what can be placed in the nursery and what can be stored for later use, you can move on to the next step.
Determine where to store things
About 63% of homes in the United States have garages or carports according to the U.S. Department of Energy. Some of the items your baby won’t need for a while can be stored on a shelf in the garage. Nothing should be stored in a carport. Clear a shelf in the garage and place unopened boxes of toys and other equipment that will not be used for a few months.
Another great place to store unopened boxes of toys and equipment is in the basement. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, about 42% of homes have either a full or partial basement, so there’s a good chance your home has one. Clear a space in the basement for the baby gear you won’t need for a few months.
Follow these tips for storage in the garage or basement
You can practice some intuitive parenting when you are deciding what can be stored in the basement or garage and what cannot. Like intuitive parenting, you can use your intuition to decide if certain goods can be stored safely in an environment that may or may not be climate-controlled.
Here are some tips for storing baby gear in the basement or garage:
- Leave everything that is going in the garage in the original box; it will help provide protection for the contents.
- Put down plastic sheeting if the boxes are going right on the floor. Plastic sheeting will provide a moisture barrier.
- Don’t store anything that can be damaged by heat or moisture like clothing, electronics, medications, or diapers.
Most equipment and toys can be stored in the basement or the garage. Most clothing, wipes, diapers, and other heat or moisture-sensitive items cannot. Hone in on your intuition and decide what can be safely stored in these two areas.
Store over-the-counter medications, toiletries, and clothing in a cool, dry space. Most homes have air conditioning since, according to Comfy Living, the demand for AC was around 15.3 million units in 2018 alone. If your home has air conditioning, finding a place to store anything safely should be easy. If not, make sure to store sensitive items away from direct sunlight and on the lowest floor of your home.
Make a plan if you’re short on storage space
Not everyone lives in a large house, and that’s okay. If you are short on space to store baby shower gifts, consider asking a family member if you can use some of their storage space. Nearby grandparents are usually eager to help. If needed, you can also use a climate-controlled storage unit as you transition your home into a baby-friendly space.
Before you know it, your baby will be here. Following these tips for managing baby gear will help you be completely prepared.