Posted: Feb 12, 2013 6:00 PM
Pregnancy can definitely be all-consuming, but, at some point, you do have to start planning for the baby's arrival. So when should you tackle the nursery? How soon is too soon and when is it too late?

The first trimester is too soon

Don't plan the nursery during the first 13 weeks. Talk about over-achieving! You're likely to be feeling, well, less than stellar (morning sickness, anyone?) and your energy is probably depleted (naps, naps and did we mention naps?). Not to mention, you're still getting used to the idea of being pregnant. So give yourself a break and, instead of thinking about the nursery, rest up!

The second trimester is just right

During the second trimester, many moms-to-be get a burst of energy that can last for several weeks, even months. The best thing to do is to capitalize on this stamina and use it to plan the nursery. You'll be able to help put together (or more likely supervise) the assembly of the crib, maybe even help paint (using paints that contain low or zero volatile organic compounds (VOC) of course and even select a glider. (Hint: The earlier you buy your rocker, the better. You'll use it long before you give birth. You'll prop your feet on the ottoman and glide back and forth as you dream about the new life that's coming into your world soon.

The third trimester (or after you give birth) is too late

Listen to these four words: Don't put it off. Even if you're planning for the baby to sleep in your room at first, or are simply feeling overwhelmed, or are in general a procrastinator, don't let this be a reason to put off preparing the nursery. After your little one arrives, the last thing you're going to want to do (or have time or energy for) is assembling a crib or arranging furniture. You'll be exhausted beyond belief and it will only stress you out to walk by an empty room each day.

Don't forget...

When putting together the nursery, there are the obvious things you need. The crib. The glider. The diaper pail. But have you thought about the little things that can make a big difference?

  • A nightlight (Your sleep-deprived self will thank you when you don't stub your toe.)
  • A table next to the glider for the things you'll need -- water, your phone, an iPad
  • A fan. Not only will it cool off the nursery, but it will be great for white noise
  • Open bins you can easily access. Your hands will almost always be full (with baby) so make it easy on yourself and put essential baby items in easy to access places

More about the second trimester

Second trimester ultrasound: What to expect
Finding out the gender: Yay or nay?
Pregnancy fashion for the second trimester