Minimal Hospital Bag

I’ve been told many times by many people that I don’t need to bring much to the hospital here in California. A lot (if not all) of it is provided for you. I thought I was a good planner when it comes to packing. But since a few things are still up in the air, even this late in the game, I’m only now finally sorted all out with the hospital bag at close to 38 weeks pregnant. I want to preface this by saying that I know many new mom-to-be’s bring a lot of unnecessary stuff. I know that everything I bring I may not use. Just be supportive of other’s going through this for the first time.

Let’s get to the real deal. I’m glad I have a few extras (like toothbrushes, and hairbrushes) so I can keep it stowed away for when the time comes to grab the bag and deliver a baby (lol). I always have a drawer in our bathroom dedicated to travel-sized items, and travel bags for organizing it all.

So, this is what I’ve packed. Is it sufficient? I’ll let you know after the delivery!

  • Snacks:
    • Trader Joe’s “Nothing But”: a variety of fig & walnut, and date & cocoa disks
    • A pack of gum
    • Trader Joe’s fruit leather
    • Crackers & nuts
    • Bottle of drink (this one’s a free “vitamin water” dupe from Costco lol)
  • Toiletries:
  • Clothing:
    • 1 pair of H&M maternity leggings
    • 2 long sleeved tees from Target (the “A New Day” collection is ALL I have been wearing this entire pregnancy. They’re non-maternity. I just sized up)
    • 1 sweater
    • 1 tank top
    • 1 pair of fuzzy socks (couldn’t find the non-slip one’s. Hoping the hospital has some!)
    • HUGE undies (lol)
    • maternity bra (it’s this one I had on my Gift Guide for Mama’s!)
  • Sleepwear:
    • Mahabis slippers (I got 2 sizes bigger than my regular slipper size those wondering!)
    • These soft PJs from Target in a bigger size. I also bought them in red but they’re staying home.
  • For Baby:
    • 2 baby outfits (newborn sized + 0-3month)
    • baby undershirt/onesie whatever they’re called
    • baby blanket for car seat (this bicycle one!)
  • Other
    • IDs
    • Phone charger

I’ve labeled everything in plastic baggies for easier access and less thinking. Plus if/when my husband goes through the bag he doesn’t have to search hard to find what I’m looking for, for instance.

The overnight bag is actually a workout bag that I bought online from the Tone It Up girls a few year ago. It’s actually my rock climbing bag, but I cleaned the chalk dust out of it and now it’s my hospital bag.

I’m taking the simple approach when it comes to packing the hospital bag. I questioned my pals on Instagram and Twitter of what they suggest I pack in the bag, and you’d think I’m going on a cross-country trip with some of the answers I received. Haha! I love it. But, I suppose you could say I’m only packing some necessities for myself to keep me comfortable, and nothing over the top. I understand that I could wear a hospital gown the entire time I’m in hospital. But what if I’m done with those gowns, yet don’t want to wear a normal long sleeved tee (which I’ve been living in) and I want to wear my new button-up PJ top from Target? I am darn sure gonna bring it with me. I’m also not bringing a robe, I only have one and I don’t want it ruined and I’m not going out to buy one just for the hospital.

I also don’t have a birth plan. That’s been quite controversial, but that’s okay with me!

Basically what’s going in the bag is what’s listed above, and some have suggested I bring some huuuuuge undies, and even depends diapers and dermoplast, hey I’ll consider it! From all the stories (all of them) I’ve heard, it’s not going to be a pretty process, I know that much.

Next and final steps? Getting a pedicure this weekend with my friend Nicole! I haven’t had my nails done since my birthday back in May. I simply want to spoil myself and cannot wait to do so! White nail polish forever.

What are some “must have’s” in your pregnancy hospital bag? Did I miss anything?

What did you bring and didn’t use? 

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  1. A toothbrush for the hubby! I also was glad to have a refillable water bottle. I drank a lot of water. Oh and cash for snacks and parking. We never carry cash and ran out last time.
    The hospital here provides huge mesh undies which were great! I wore them until we went home.
    Don’t worry, it won’t be that bad. You’ll do great!

    1. @KDot: Gah! Yes! Empty water bottle – good call. I’m chugging milk and water these days lol. Haven’t packed anything for Mister yet (he said he’d do it but I have a few things laid out for him in a separate bag). But most likely he’ll be driving back and fourth from the hospital for me, and coming home to care for Alfie still too. Excited to see what these mesh undies are all about that people keep talking about hahahaha
      Nancy recently posted..Minimal Hospital BagMy Profile

  2. You only really need Depends if your water breaks when you are still walking around, or if you need to be induced I highly suggest them.
    Have you considered a nursing tank top? I lived in those, and would throw a long sleeve shirt over so when my tank is down there’s a bit more coverage on top.

    1. @Kate: Ohhhh…. I thought the depends would’ve come in handy for after delivery. A few people suggested it but I guess I didn’t question them enough as to when they wore them I suppose! A friend gave me a nursing tank top at my baby shower. I’m not bringing it to the hospital though because I have a button up PJ top, and also a nursing bra thingie.
      Nancy recently posted..Minimal Hospital BagMy Profile

  3. I totally overpacked all three times, I never learn. I have to say though that those zip sleepsuits/rompers (I assume it’s from gap?) are the BEST THINGS EVER. Honestly buy as many as you can, they look adorable but there is nothing harder than trying to fasten the buttons up on a sleepsuits when you are totally sleep deprived. They are my essential but here in the UK only gap seem to sell them.

  4. I generally overpack for myself but baby usually goes through more things than I pack :/ spit up and poop happen. Usually 3/4 sleepers and onesies. Here we have to bring our own diapers now too so so that’s all I’ll have for baby plus her cute saddle and headband set:)

  5. Phone charger, iPad, laptop, etc. – you could be bored-ish while in mild labor.

    Take as many diapers and binkies and baby supplies you can possibly stash in your bag before you leave the hospital. Your insurance is paying for it anyway! I totally stocked up.

    You could also bring a flame less scented candle to help relax you. Or essential oils.

    Depends for sure! I never brought them with the other two kids but with this one, I’m definitely doing it. So much more convenient than big ol pads in my granny panties.

  6. Hi Nancy, you’ve packed just great and typical you (organized). Everything you need will be there for the short time you’re in the hospital. Don’t stress over it, women are giving birth without essentials oils and candles all over the world and having happy healthy births. This is not a spa experience it’s the experience of a lifetime. I can’t wait for you and Scott to welcome minikerms.

    1. @Jeanne: Friggen takin’ the words right outta my mouth there Jeanne b’y! You’re right… it’s not a spa experience, and I’m totally not treating it like that either (and I know some are – which is fine for them). Not everyone experiences the same pregnancy symptoms, and not everyone also feels comfortable packing five gillion suitcases (not a spelling error lol) for their delivery. I think I’m set :)
      Nancy recently posted..Minimal Hospital BagMy Profile

  7. Not sure if your hospital provides this, but Vaseline for his bottom for that first poop (meconium). That stuff is like tar…nuff said, lol.

    Also, not hospital bag related, but I recommend going on a nice date with your husband. It’s so much harder to make time for your partner when you’ve got a little one who takes up most of your time and energy. Doubly true when you don’t have family nearby to pop by and watch your kiddo for a few hours.

    Good luck mama, you got this!

  8. Thank you Nancy for sharing Minimal Hospital Bag post. A concise list of all essentials. I love how everything is SO organized and labeled.

    I just threw everything in the bag and end up missing lots of needed items ie. toothbrush but no toothpaste and a towel but no soap. LOL

    I also wished I threw in snacks. I was always hungry at the hospital. :)

    Whats one must have in your hospital bag?

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