Bump to Baby Bucket List: 10 Things I'll Do Before Baby's Due

Friday 26 June 2015

I mentioned a few posts back that I had a ‘Bump to Baby’ bucket list, or a selection of things I wanted to do before the baby came – well, I actually have two.

One is very practical and centred around the large household jobs that I want to complete before he’s born. The other is more fun, and a lot easier! It just involves ‘nice to do’ things I want to make time for pre-baby.

Its not that I think life stops when you give birth but it does change dramatically. You may still be able to do all of the things on my list, but I know they’ll be a damn sight harder or certainly take a lot more planning to achieve.

So this is all about just taking a moment to appreciate being alone, being spontaneous, and being able to make choices based only on my personal needs – something I’m about to wave goodbye to!

So here’s my before-birth, Bump to Baby Bucket List:

Read a complicated book

I have, and will always be, an unashamed book worm. A love of reading has honestly given me so much in my life, not least a place I can always escape to when life gets too much.

But losing yourself completely in the plot of a compelling novel gets harder when you have to keep one ear on the baby monitor. I think my reading material is likely to be more Disney than Dostoevsky for a while, and that’s fine. But while I still can, I’m going to immerse myself in something huge.

I’ve already ticked off some of the classics I wanted to read but hadn’t this summer – A Tale of Two Cities, The Great Gatsby - and thoroughly enjoyed it. Now I want to tackle an historical epic – Alison Weir’s huge, multi-layered Wars of the Roses. Something I can really get into, that feeds my mind – but requires sustained concentration of the kind that’s difficult when you become a mummy.

Visit five great local restaurants

Arranging a night out for dinner is hard with a baby, and I’ve heard plenty of tales of new mummies getting to the restaurant, only to have to turn around and go back home as they’re worrying too much about the baby!

I’m sure Seb and I will eventually get back to spending some alone time together, but we both accept that won’t be a priority for a while. So while we don’t have to worry about babysitters and maternal separation anxiety, I’d like us to visit some restaurants – a mix of old favourites and ones we haven’t tried – and just enjoy the experience of a stress-free night out together and some conversation where no one mentions nappies.

Catch up with friends

Your world shrinks dramatically when you have a baby – and perhaps that’s the way it should be. But keeping up with friends all too often becomes a luxury when there’s a little person who needs your undivided attention.

At first you’re sleep deprived and overwhelmed, then when the kid gets a little older, I know from experience that mum is usually unable to hold a prolonged conversation as there are interruptions every two minutes.

If your friends don’t have kids, that can be especially hard to understand, I’m sure. Its one of life’s gear changes, and that can be rough. So I want to make sure I get in a quality afternoon or so with all those good friends, take time to really talk to them and just cherish that.

Splurge on make-up

It’s a bit of a silly one, but there you go. Babies come with endless stuff to pay for. There’s plenty to buy before they arrive, and even more after. So financial priorities do change.

I get that life won’t become one joyless hole of no new shoes after baby, and I also get that these things are less important anyway when there’s the perspective-altering fact of a little person relying on you. But all the same, I’m not sure if I’ll be feeling bad every time I buy a new lipstick when it could have been a toy for the baby instead. So in the meantime, I’m going to treat myself.

Make-up is my absolute passion, so I’ve granted myself full permission to indulge over the next couple of months. I already have my eye on the new Urban Decay palette and a couple of Mac lipstick shades. I might not even have the will to use it after baby, but I’m going to take the chance to splash out, guilt free.

Write a letter to my baby

One of the things I really want to do is write a letter to my baby now. Pregnancy is such an unique time, and such an emotional time. You get all of the feels!

I want to be able to tell him one day what it was like waiting for him to arrive, feeling the love I have for him grow as he grew, how excited his Daddy and I were to meet him, how we wondered what he was dreaming about while he waited to be born, how we spoke to him and tapped the tight skin of my stomach when he kicked to try and communicate back – all those things.

Precious things, but little details that can remain unspoken or slip through the cracks.

When the letter is written, I’m going to seal it away and give it to him when he’s older – perhaps when he leaves home or some big life event. Just to remind him how much mum and dad loved him, even before we met him.

Enjoy adult rituals

This one is about taking time to enjoy the little things in life. A long, leisurely breakfast on a Sunday with copious pots of coffee and syrupy brioche. Curling up when its rainy outside with a pile of magazines and bar of chocolate. Relaxing in a bubble bath with a thick face mask on.

All of those little, still moments that give such quiet joy and meaning to the rhythm of life. Now of course, there are new rituals to be discovered with a baby. But I think I might occasionally miss the ones above, so I’m going to make some time to appreciate them while I can.

I also plan to go into town and have a day out shopping, without having to lug a pram around and worry about nap schedules.

Go to an open-air play or performance

One of the things I’ve always loved about summer (when we get any), is the great outdoor performance. A bit of open air theatre, opera, a concert under the trees or even watching some 20/20 cricket with a basket of sandwiches. So I’d like to fit in a couple of these things before the end of August.

We’ve already got tickets for an outdoor screening of Don Giovanni in July, and hopefully there will be some other things we can go to locally as well.

Get a baby book

Just because its one of those things that can get easily overlooked and I don’t want to wish I’d done it when I look back. Some kind of baby memory box or book would be lovely to record those important milestones and little moments as they happen.

I remember my mother had one for me, and I used to find it fascinating when I was older. She kept things like my hospital wristband and my first baby grow. I would look at them as an older child, trying to imagine myself as a baby in awe at how small they were. I’d like that for my son too, so I want to get a nice place to keep some items like that.

Book a haircut and a gel pedicure

I used to have a boss who insisted it only took her ten minutes to get ready in the morning, and that was because she had a rigorous routine of beauty prep work that she used to refer to as her ‘MOT’ (this was a car business, so it was more funny in context!).

She would get her brows shaped and her eyelash extensions done, a manicure and pedicure and a treatment on her hair. Her argument was that taking this time meant she could get away with no make-up other than a swipe of tinted moisturiser and a quick hair brushing in the mornings, and it did work.

It’s a bit of an extreme (not to mention expensive) approach of course, but she was well off and felt that it was worth the money for the time savings. Now of course I’m not going in for as much as she did, but I have resolved to book in a haircut and a pedicure before the big day.

I don’t actually have my hair cut very often (usually only every 6 months or less) but it is easier to style after its done, which will be good once he comes along. Also I imagine finding uninterrupted time to go to the hairdressers is rare with a baby.

I also want to book a gel pedicure. I’m definitely at the point where I can no longer do my own toenails. I’ve actually never had a professional pedicure before because I didn’t really want to inflict my feet on someone, but now that its sandal season, I could definitely do with one!

Write a thank you card/letter to Daddy

This last one is very important. I feel that the daddy often gets forgotten about in everything. People always say ‘It’s the mum doing all the hard work.’ That is an unavoidable, biological fact. We grow the babies, we feed them and they rely utterly on us in the beginning.

We suffer all the physical discomfort of carrying a baby, going through labour, and becoming a feeding machine. That's our biological lot and our privelege.

But what about the people who support us most? Seb has been amazing while I’ve been pregnant - caring, supportive and understanding. I really don’t know what we would have done without him. He’s worked hard to get the house ready, done plenty domestically and spent hours rubbing my back and getting up with me in the night when I’ve felt sick.

Its been a special time for us, as having a family of his own has always been his dream and watching it come true for him is lovely. When baby is born I might not have much time for him – that is just the reality of being a primary caregiver to a baby – so I want to write him a letter too, and let him know how valued he is. I’m planning to pop it in my hospital bag and give it to him after we’re parents.

So that’s my little list of things to do. Are you starting a baby bucket list? What would you put on yours? If you have kids, what do you wish you’d made time for before they arrived? Let me know!


  1. Such a lovely list! I love the idea of writing a letter to my baby! I'm definitely going to invest in a baby book too but think I might wait until after my baby shower just incase someone else buys one first haha! xo

  2. Writing a letter to your baby is the cutest thing ever. This is definitely something I'd do in the future :) Xx


  3. Thats such a lovely post! I am a new follower xx

    Charlotte | www.discoveringcharlotte.co.uk