Hello, week 33!! I can’t even believe it.
While I want so badly to meet our little baby girl, I also can’t help but think of all the things that need to get done both personally and within our business before I attempt to take maternity leave.
With Greyson and Beckam (my first two born), I never really took a maternity leave, and this time around I told Jamie I’m taking one regardless of what life throws our way. Whether or not I can mentally check out will be the big question and one I probably won’t know until it is here.
But I’m planning on it. So I’ve been making my maternity leave checklist…of all the things I need to prepare for and get done before I go MIA. And wanted to share this checklist with all of you expecting mommas out there to hopefully help take a little stress off of your planning and get things buttoned up and in order before you check out to only love on your little babes.
Plan your Financial Calendar & Budget
Finances, one of the most important things I’m in charge of for both our family household and also our business. The thing that I have to stay on top of every day, make sure bills are paid, subs and vendors are paid, household needs have been stocked and the budget is being maintained.
Together, Jamie and I usually review our personal finances and our financial reports from our accountant once a month. But being I’m totally wanting to check out we sat down and went over everything for the last quarter of 2020 (October- December).
There’s a lot of great tools out there but I love s good ole spreadsheets! On a simple spreadsheet, I track all of our personal and professional expenses and in the following columns I put in the date due, total amount budgeted, and when paid. So I’ve now gone and paid out all expenses to get ahead of the next three months so I don’t need to worry about staying on top of these.
Pay the Bills Ahead of Time
I also got all of our bills set up for auto-payment or I went ahead and paid ahead until November so that I set to know I don’t have to make any payments to anyone until after the baby comes. And if the baby doesn’t come until October, I’ll be sure to take another look at this and get payments made until year-end so I can rest easy for a good three months without having anything coming in.
Ensure Cash Flow
Cash flow, another big thing as a business owner, and as a mom, is making sure we always maintain proper cash flow. Getting everything paid ahead of time or ensuring automatic payments are all set up cash flow was big on my mind. This is something you’ll want to make sure you’re planning out early in your pregnancy because it may take some planning and save time.
As a small business owner, we’re constantly trying to do workload and cash flow projections. To not only reach our goals, and set up new goals to achieve but to be able to know when we can pump the breaks or need to work full steam ahead to ensure our employees are going to get paid. So as soon as we found out we were pregnant late this winter, we were planning out projections until year-end and making sure to save to know “just in case” something were to happen and work slowed down we’d be okay.
Another new and big thing we did was set up short term disability for both of us to ensure we were still being paid while taking time off.
Thanks to my big brother Jesse (who is our wealth manager), he told us a couple of years back if we’re thinking about ever having a third now is the time to look into short term disability insurance policy options. So we took his advice and got that set up. And boy, are we thanking him now.
Prepare All Documents
All the paperwork, regardless if you are self-employed, work for someone else or are a stay at home momma or daddy…here’s things that you’ll want to look into and make sure documents are prepared.
- FMLA application (if employed by employer)
- Short term Disability (if self-employed)
- Vacation time request (if employed by employer)
- Any forms your doctor will need to fill out
- Your company’s family leave policy
- Letters and emails (print them out) to or from your boss, human resources department, or others
- Update your company manual, if self-employed
- Ensure all templates are up to date. Things your team or whoever is covering your position will need to know
- An email autoresponder is a setup
- Insurance for baby
- Birth plan printed out
Home Needs, Delegate & Ask for Help
Enough about financials and paperwork, you need to also prepare for maternity leave at home.
Things such as who will be feeding you, cleaning your home, doing laundry, and all the things that us mommas maintain in the home? If these are things you as a mom typically do, it’s time to outsource and ask for help.
Other children and pets? Another thing we needed to line up is who is going to watch our other two kids for when we’re at the hospital and helping within those first few days we’re at home. Getting Greyson to and from school, and Beckam to and from daycare at different times throughout the day…fed, bathed, and clothed. And we don’t have pets, but if we did, it’s never too early to ask for help and get someone scheduled out to be on call for when labor begins. As I always say, it takes a village to raise a family!
Delegate was my word for 2020, and it’s been a game-changer. Again, both personally and professionally. Whether it was outsourcing things such as client thank you gifts, sourcing selections, or utilizing courier services…taking things off of my plate has given me the personal and mental freedom to get other things done that are a better use of my time. And I’m doing the same when it comes to this pregnancy. Asking for help, delegating, and outsourcing. No more, “honey, will you do this?!” It’s…”honey, DO THIS.”
Take Cleaning & Laundry off your Plate
The biggest thing that stresses me out at home is a messy house. Upon maternity leave, you are going to have enough on your plate so it’s time to think about who can take this off your plate if you’re typically the one who is in charge.
Housework in our home totally stresses me out and while I am more than capable one thing I’m doing is hiring a house cleaner. I want to not only come home to a clean home after we get home from the hospital but I want to take a couple of months off of cleaning all day as I know I’m going to have my hands full just simply being a mom to three. That is my gift to myself and I’m not feeling bad about it at all!
Stock your Fridge, Meal Plan
Groceries, another big one! I’ve already had a few friends offer to bring meals and I’m taking them up on it! I’ve also planned out a 30-day meal plan and signed up for Target Shipt to deliver so I won’t have to worry about venturing out to grab the groceries or what’ll be for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. I have my weekly lists ready to roll, based on my 30-day meal plan and all I’ll have to do is log onto the computer, check out, and groceries will be here within a couple of hours.
Pack Your Hospital Bag
And lastly, make sure your hospital bag is packed and ready to go! This is something that is in the works right now. I have half of our bags packed but thanks to our hospital bag checklist from Beckam, we should have this ready to rock and roll in no time.
You can download and print off the checklist HERE!