Being a mama-to-be is an exciting time, especially when it comes the time to start prepping for baby’s arrival. Since moving back to the UK I have started really getting everything ready for baby, and have found some amazing resources and classes along the way. These are the best 3 FREE things you can sign-up for in the UK.
3. Emma’s Diary
I heard about Emma’s diary from a my sister who was discussing it with someone else. They had both signed up and received lots of free stuff, along with a plethora of information.
“Goodie bags?” I heard. I wanted in!
I googled it and found the website absolutely full of articles for new mums. But Emma’s diary is more than just a blog. They are an alliance partner with the Royal College of Midwives, and have been around for nearly 25 years. So knowing that all the information they give is verified by medical professionals, it gives a mum-to-be peace of mind. I think of it as having a midwife available 24/7 to ask all those niggle questions that crop up!
“Our mission is to make sure that every mum-to-be and new mum has the information she wants to support her through her amazing experience of pregnancy, birth and early motherhood.”
– Emma’s Diary
By signing up to the Emma’s Diary mailing list, you get vouchers for free goodie packs which you can collect from either Boots or Argos, along with heaps of money off vouchers.
There are three main packs to collect from Boots or Argos, and then an additional one from your midwife which I haven’t got yet. I was mainly really happy with the contents as they are perfect for mums who travel as you get lots of tiny sample-size things. I always keep hold of these mini-sized products as they are perfect for weekends away.
Sign up for Emma’s Diary for FREE here.
2. Baby Box University
The Baby Box is a scheme which is currently being rolled our across the country, so check if it is in your area yet. Based on a Finnish incentive to reduce SIDS in newborns, this initiative educates new parents about safe sleeping and then provides them with a simple box for their newborn to sleep in. The boxes are supposedly the most safe sleeping environment for a new baby to sleep in, and come equipped with everything a newborn might need, such as bib, hat, scratch mitts, nappies, and breast pads.
The box then can be used as a beautiful storage for kids toys or clothes once they have outgrown it.
“It’s not really about the box, it’s about the education.”
– Dr. Kathie McCans, Chairwoman of New Jersey State Child Fatality and Near Fataility Review Board
Having learnt a lot about safe sleeping, I much prefer the idea of my little one sleeping in the box compared to a moses basket or snooze-pod. They come with a mattress, sheet, and instructions for safe sleep. I think the incentive is a great idea, and would recommend any new parent-to-be to sign up. I’ll let you know how we get on using the box when the little one arrives!
1. Antenatal Classes
There are quite a few different organisations that offer prenatal classes in the UK, and choosing which ones to take will depend on your area and your income (some can be fairly expensive.) The NHS offers completely free classes, and again, the different kinds of classes they offer depends on your area. I really recommend taking whatever classes you can with the NHS, even if it is just the core antenatal and breastfeeding classes. Read more about classes with the NHS here.
Other classes which I recommend that might not be free but are worth doing are:
- NCT – not free but discount available for low income households. Worth the money!
- Hypnobirthing – I have heard AMAZING things about this.
- The Daisy Foundation – Antenatal, Birthing, and Pregnancy Yoga classes.
The NHS classes are great core classes for learning all about birth and caring for a new baby. I would consider joining either NCT or Daisy Foundation as well as these classes are geared around meeting new parents at the same stage as you. I just finished my NCT classes and learnt so much and I met a great group of people. I set up a Whatsapp group for the mums-to-be in the group and now have my own little support network on hand!
Read more about Hypnobirthing here.