Alex/Fotolia

9 Hospital Bag Essentials You Need If You're Giving Birth During The Holidays

Ad failed to load

Giving birth during the holiday season? Worried about missing out on the annual festivities? Why not bring the holiday spirit with you to the hospital room? You can't pack tradition in a bag, but you can bring a few cheerful supplies to brighten the room — and the hospital staff's day. And as far as baby things go, what's cuter than holiday newborn clothes and swaddling things? Probably nothing — except for your baby herself, of course. Packing your hospital bag for the holidays doesn't have to be overwhelming, trust me.

I loved packing my hospital bag. In fact, I packed it several times. (I still forgot my toothbrush.) In a moment of supernatural foresight, I packed a few bags of kettle corn, which turned out to be a big hit with everyone. I still have the socks I bought for walking the cold hospital floors — they say Ready, Set, Push, and yes, I know that's terribly corny. Some of what you put in your hospital bag will be evergreen — your insurance card and the like — but with Amazon selling everything in a handbag, there are lots of fun, holiday-themed options for hospital gowns, baby hats, and more. Here are nine hospital bag essentials you need if you're giving birth during the holidays.

Ad failed to load

1A Holiday Focal Point

Giphy

Hypnobirthing practitioner, doula, and author of Feng Shui Mommy Bailey Gaddis recently attended a birth the day after Thanksgiving. "The mom had me set up a mini Christmas tree in her hospital room with a 'Baby's First Christmas' ornament hanging on it," Gaddis tells Romper.

Sounds cute right? In fact, the Christmas tree served a powerful purpose during the birth. "She used the tree and ornament as her focal point during the birth, saying it helped her look beyond the pain of birth and focus on the joy she would feel sharing her first Christmas with her daughter," Gaddis explains. "And, because this mama is such a lover of the holidays, she had me run out to buy candy canes she could suck on for a jolt of refreshing energy."

2Holiday Treats

Giphy

Speaking of candy, what's better than peppermint to refresh you after you give birth, or popcorn to string on a needle and thread while you wait for your baby to arrive?

Many hopsital bag essentials list — like this one from the impeccably stylish Lauren Conrad — suggest whipping up some cookies for the nurses. Make them holiday cookies, and you're sure to get a cheerful smile (also, super-quick ice chip delivery). Baking cookies is also a great way to pass your early labor before you head to your hospital or clinic.

3Holiday Decorations

Giphy

Dr. Megan Davidson of BrooklynDoula has seen mothers bring all sorts of special decorative notes into their holiday-season births: an electric menorah if the birth falls during Hanukkah, tiny knit Santa hats or tiny Santa outfits for the baby, and lots of holiday treats, like cookies baked by grandma, are some examples she cites. She's even seen Christmas lights to help set the mood, and small wrapped presents (now that's some serious advance planning).

As far as decorations go, you should check with your hospital to see what they'll allow. My hospital allowed electric candles, but not actual ones, as well as air fresheners and diffusers. Lots of air freshener brands make holiday scents, so test out a few to bring with you. If you're timing contractions in early labor, try simmering cinnamon, allspice, oranges, and cloves on the stove and bringing your homemade potpourri in a jar.

Ad failed to load

4Seasonal Hospital Gown

Pretty Pushers

No, you don't have to wear that scratchy green thing this season. Thanks to the internet, labor gowns abound. Order one in a festive color (with ruffles) from boutique Pretty Pushers. It's hospital-approved.

Don't forget a warm flannel robe, slippers, and other comfy wintery things.

5Holiday Newborn Hats

Three Bears/Etsy

Newborns need hats to regulate their temperature in the early weeks, and that's even more true in the winter season. If you have a friend who knits, get them knitting. Otherwise, there are lots of adorable holiday newborn hats for sale. On Etsy, you can even get them personalized with your baby's name.

6Winter Baby Clothes & Swaddle Blankets

Burt's Bees

There's a special place in my heart for the iconic swaddling blankets they use at the hopsital — and there's actually an interesting story behind them, according to Quartz. But these too you can make more festive, with your favorite holiday colors and themes.

Remember that besides swaddling, you'll also need a going-home outfit for baby. Something soft and cozy will fit with your holiday birth theme, like this sleeper from Burt's Bees.

Ad failed to load

7Holiday Lotions & Creams

Burt's Bees

It's winter — and it's dry out there. After giving birth, you can expect chapped lips and hands. Pack cinnamon spicy hand creams to soothe dehydrated skin, like the Burt's Bees Mani Pedi Holiday Gift Set.

8Holiday Music

Giphy

Bring a phone speaker dock, or even your Alexa or Google Home device, and create a holiday playlist to keep it merry. (Consider bringing an alternate playlist in case the holiday music winds up annoying you during labor, because, well, you never know.) My favorite is Vince Guaraldi's Charlie Brown Christmas album.

9Baby Headbands For A Photo Op

Jane

You'll be taking plenty of (non-flash) photos of your newborn, so bring something to dress them up, like this holiday-sweet infant headband from Jane.

Check out Romper's new video series, Romper's Doula Diaries:

Watch full episodes of Romper's Doula Diaries on Facebook Watch.

Ad failed to load
Must Reads

21 Moms Share The Most Surprising Part About Having A C-Section

Honestly, I don't think we, as a culture, talk about C-sections nearly enough, especially considering so many mothers experience them. And because of a number of factors, the little we do talk about it always seems to be a familiar narrative: "It's n…
By Jamie Kenney

13 Yummy Instant Pot Recipes To Make Under 30 Minutes

An Instant Pot seems to be the must-have appliance in every kitchen these days. If you are anything like me and never knew the beauty of a Instant Pot, you are about to have your life changed. Basically, you put some ingredients into a pot, set the t…
By Kristin Manna

9 Things The First Six Months Of Motherhood Will Teach You About Your Baby

Personally, the first six months of motherhood was a mixed bag. I learned some harsh lessons about myself that made taking care of my baby seem overwhelming. For example, I was clueless, and no amount of research could help me feel like anything but …
By Steph Montgomery

These Photos Of North West Then & Now Will Take You On A Sweet Trip Down Memory Lane

When Kim Kardashian welcomed her first daughter, North West, with her husband, Kanye West, in 2013, her whole life was changed. The social media and reality TV star became a mom for the first time and her Instagram presence took a very adorable turn.…
By Casey Suglia

11 Photos You *Must* Take During The Last Days Of Your Pregnancy

During my first pregnancy, I took a photo each week to document my growing belly. I stopped around 36 weeks, though. I hated how I looked in those pictures, and didn't think I'd want to relive those moments. I was wrong. My second pregnancy was a dum…
By Steph Montgomery

This Is What It Means If Your Pregnancy Test Changes Overnight

The time between when a woman suspects she might be pregnant and when it is confirmed for sure is the longest of her life. Regardless of whether you are hoping for a positive or a negative result, the odds are good that you are sweating bullets when …
By Shannon Evans

6 Red Flags To Definitely Look Out For After Your Baby Falls

The first time my infant son tried to take a few steps, he tumbled and bumped his head on the coffee table. My blood turned to ice in my veins and I froze. There truly isn't anything quite like the feeling a parent gets when their little one gets hur…
By Sarah Bunton

These 9 Instant Pot Recipes Will Make Even The Pickiest Eater Happy At The Table

Like any parent, I've had my share of parenting hits and misses, but one of my favorite "wins" is my daughter's diverse palate. I don't even know if I can take credit for it, but I would like to think I had something to do with her love for lentils, …
By Caroline Shannon-Karasik

Turns Out, Kim Kardashian's Favorite Mom Products Look A Lot Like Your Own Faves

Being a mom is really hard work, especially for the first few months, and Kim Kardashian West is no different in that regard. Now the mother of three, Kardashian says that there are a few products she just can't live without when it comes to raising …
By Abi Berwager Schreier

Soda Might Hurt Your Fertility, Study Says, & Here's What You Can Do

Who doesn't love sugary drinks? I stopped drinking soda years ago, but I still love gulping down those fancy Starbucks coffee beverages. I don't have a big sweet tooth, but I am a sucker for sugar-sweetened beverages every now-and-then. Turns out, th…
By Annamarya Scaccia

10 Things No One Tells You About Having A Baby In Your 30s

If you're like me, you evaluate the pros and cons of any major life decision. When my husband and I were considering starting a family, I thought about my career, education, and financial stability. I wanted to know how a pregnancy and childbirth wou…
By Steph Montgomery

This Woman Thought She Had An Eyelash Stuck In Her Eye. Then It Moved.

I'm not a person who is easily icked out. As a kid, I collected bugs and thought I was going to be an entomologist and asked Santa Claus for ant farms and nets to catch bees. I'm still super curious about anything that flies and crawls, which might s…
By Karen Fratti

5 Red Flags Your Toddler Isn't Eating Enough

Toddlers are notoriously picky eaters, at least in my experience. You offer mashed potatoes, they want french fries. You give them crackers, they scream for chips. It's frustrating, to be sure, but it's usually their way of vying for independence. It…
By Candace Ganger

35 Moms Share The Most Disgusting Things Their Husbands Do

I'm a human being who revels in challenges. I like when people present me with one, especially if they don't think I can meet or succeed it, and I like taking a challenge on, especially if it's unexpected. So when I aimed to uncover the most disgusti…
By Jamie Kenney

How Having Kids In Your 20s Affects You Later In Life

For parents, like myself, who had kids in their 20s, there are a number of questions that come to mind. When you're deciding what your future will look like, you'll likely consider what this means for your health, career, and more down the line. Thin…
By Tessa Shull

Study: Drinking Two Glasses Of Wine A Day Is Good For Your Mind — Here's Why

There’s more scientific proof that a daily drink or two isn't necessarily a bad thing and could have a place in an overall healthy lifestyle. A new study out of the University of Rochester Medical Center (URMC) in New York found that — in mice, at le…
By Tiffany Thomas

8 "Mistakes" I'm Glad I Made During My First Pregnancy

As an adult, I've learned you never really stop hating being told what to do. When I was pregnant I was getting instructions at every turn, from doctors, relatives, and complete strangers on the subway. I would nod and smile but then go about making …
By Liza Wyles

Research Says Eating Carbs Can Lead To A Healthy Pregnancy, So Bring On The Pasta

In the world of me, no food is better than bread. I know it's supposed to be pretty terrible for you, high in calories, low in protein, and full of that modern-day demon, gluten... but guys, it's really yummy. Especially warm out of the oven, when th…
By Jen McGuire

These Photos Of Prince George Then & Now Will Give You Serious Baby Fever

The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge are expecting their third child in Spring 2018. With all of the excitement surrounding the new baby, it's easy to forget all of the good times that have already passed. The couple's eldest is already well into the sc…
By Azure Hall

This Is, Hands Down, The *Grossest* Thing Babies Do Inside The Womb

Your baby's life in the womb may be safe and warm, but it's also kind of grody. Seriously, the whole process of growing into a human being includes more than a few icky moments along the way. But this is the grossest thing babies do inside the womb b…
By Lindsay E. Mack