Things you should do on Maternity Leave vs Things you shouldn’t

If you are anything like I was, you’ll be counting down the days until your maternity leave starts. You are probably feeling like the side of a bus, needing a wee approximately every seven minutes and have the temperament of a warthog with a wasp up its nose. You. Need. A. Break.


You might be a crazy woman who wants to work right up to the point that you have to pay for a cleaning charge on your office chair because your waters broke on it, and you’re still yelling instructions to colleagues between puffs on the gas and air, or you finally get to the long awaited day when your leave starts, thinking you’ll have a few weeks before baby arrives and it’s pop! Here comes the bubba! If you are either of these then you needn’t read the following.

But, should you find yourself with the bliss that is the two or so weeks you get to yourself before you have no time to yourself EVER AGAIN, then here’s the Mumzilla do’s and don’ts…


Sort out the baby’s room. It’s so exciting making the cot and setting out little outfits. Make sure it’s comfy – you’ll be spending A LOT of time in here (the room, not the cot)

Make a baby changing station downstairs, in a place that won’t kill your back from bending over. Traipsing up and down stairs 16 times a day with a soiled and wailing infant isn’t much fun.

An online shop. I would suggest getting lots of food that is easy to grab, or be fed to you with a spoon by your partner as you attempt to stuff your boob in baby’s mouth.


Spring clean. You’ll only knacker yourself and the place will look like a bomb’s hit it in a few weeks anyway. If you must, get a willing pal to do it instead – people will do anything for an enormously fat person with doe eyes (even if it is out of fear that you will go warthog on them)

Cook a load of lasagnes. I know everyone says you should, but just relax and put your feet up. Get oven meals instead – you’ll be sick of lasagne in a week and your house will stink of onions. Also what normal person has room in their freezer for all those meals? Mine’s full of peas and 17 half eaten boxes of birdseye potato waffles.

Plan on anything cerebral. I planned on finishing the children’s story I’ve been writing for the past fifteen years. It was all I could do to make it to the sofa each day and watch Criminal Minds with my mouth open and my eyes half closed.

Whatever you end up doing on your pre-baby maternity leave, try and do it in a chilled out, relaxed way. You’re about to find out why! Good Luck!


26 thoughts on “Things you should do on Maternity Leave vs Things you shouldn’t

  1. When on my ‘maternity leave’ I ended up watching a load of Special Victims Unit and CSI. I didn’t even bother with making up freezer meals, like a lot of women do. It seemed to drag because I really wanted the baby here and was glad when it was over. Now I kind of miss being pregnant and having lie-ins. #TribalLove

  2. I finished for maternity leave thre weeks before my due date because I had loads of holidays to use. I remember laying on the couch, watching Britain’s Next Top Model and thinking, “God, I’m bored.” Hahahahaha – if I’d had any idea how much I’d miss being bored…#chucklemums #triballove

  3. so true! pre cooking meals is a nice idea in theory. but i hat defrosted food. So never did that. and anyway i think the tiredness and exhaustion is slightly overrated. the world doesn’t stop when you have a baby. one adjusts a lot quicker that one would think. I always just tried to relax, sleep and just slow down a bit before baby’s arrival. great tips for all mums to be.

  4. This is brilliant – I loved the bit about needing a clean for the office chair! Mother had four weeks before I arrived and she hated it at the time – she was soooooo bored. She filled it with Audrey Hepburn films and reading some Shakespeare plays (seriously hoping that they would be passed on to me through the womb WTF!?) and lots of Real Housewives….now four weeks spent in this way would be awesome x #chucklemums

    1. I often think so. And how on earth did she read shakespeare?! I could barely blink! Thanks for commenting Baby A xx

  5. Oh goodness, yes. Yes to all these! Especially the baby changing bit – everyone told me I didn’t need a snazzy changing table upstairs in baby’s room, but I ignored them. Suffice to say within a few weeks of his birth I’d resorted to a mat on the floor in the front room, shoved under the sofa when not in use (very, very rare). The bad news is I’ve got another one in nappies now and it’s still there! #chucklemums

  6. I cooked lasagnes. Too much actually Friends advised me to have lots of prepared meals in case I would be tired or too busy to cook with a newborn. I had three of them and was so sick of it, I threw the rest away. Get yourself a take-away is my advice!!!! Don’t worry about your weight the first few weeks after the birth. #chucklemums

  7. I definitely did food hoarding during my couple of weeks. If anything, and I mean anything got eaten from the freezer it had to be replaced within 24hours – I was like a crazed frozen foods type gollum. I couldn’t be arsed with spring cleaning but I handwashed and ironed all my first babies new clothes very lovingly and thought how lovely it was to do it!……….sorry gag reflex alert. I may have lost my sense of ironing but hopefully not my sense of irony!!! #chucklemums

    1. I did exactly the same things with the baby clothes! They were never that clean again…. 😀 Thanks for commenting xx

  8. Couldn’t agree more with these!! Especially the changing station downstairs one. People pay a fortune for changing tables but a towel and changing mat on the bed or sofa works just as well! My first baby I did all the don’t list…my 3rd (and last one!), I did all the do’s!
    Fab post. The NCT should publish this as general guidance 😉 xx

  9. Yea toward the end there I was quite lazy and didn’t do much around the house at all. But we had a lot prepared in advance. I did work up to the end, but I had to be induced so there was no risk of office desk clean up haha. Omg that sentense gave me a chuckle though.

  10. Haha – good advice! You should definitely ALWAYS have a changing station upstairs & one downstairs! I would add that, under no circumstances, none at all, should you watch One Born Every Minute on your maternity leave. Or at all during pregnancy. Or after birth if you plan on having another child. #chucklemums

  11. Great post… And v timely for me as its my due date, no sign of baby and already been off for 3 weeks! I half attempted some spring cleaning which actually went ok but not bothered with any batch cooking! Hoping I don’t have another 2 weeks to go :/ xx

  12. Definately concur on the cleaning one. I remember my parents came to spring clean our house when I was in hospital having the Child and when the Husband came to pick me up he said “our house smells like your parents’ house, it’s so weird.” I responded “you mean it smells clean you idiot”. Seriously considering having a second child do they’ll come round and clean again!

  13. Sooo wish I’d set up a changing station downstairs. We were that sleep deprived and shell-shocked it took us about three months before we realised how ridiculous it was to keep going up and down the stairs every few minutes to change the never-ending nappies. Why didn’t we think of that one sooner?!

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