what to do in your first trimester of pregnancy

Your First-trimester: 10 essential to-dos to rock early pregnancy

It’s a really crazy thing when you find out you are pregnant. Whether it was planned or not these early pregnancy tips will help you get through the rollercoaster that is your first trimester.

My two pregnancies were radically different. One was planned, one wasn’t. One was super easy, the other was pretty painful. But for both, I was so excited and so scared all at the same time.

If you just found out you are in your first trimester, there are a million questions swirling around in your head. I remember the day I found out I was pregnant with my first child.

The entire day I googled. I was in a haze of thoughts and a little lost as to what to do next.

I won’t lie to you, we made a lot of mistakes preparing for both of our babies to get here. But guess what that means? You get to learn from all the things I did wrong and right!

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Call your doctor

After you get that first confirmation from your lovely pee test make sure to call your doctor and schedule your first appointment.

They probably won’t see you until 8 or ten weeks but since your first appointment is usually a little lengthy they are harder to schedule.

things to do in your first trimester, make sure to call your doctor

When you go to your first appointment make sure you are completely comfortable with your doctor and that their thoughts on birth align with yours.

You are entering into a 7 or 8-month commitment with them, picking the wrong doctor can make your whole pregnancy crap.

Some questions you may want to think about asking:

  • Will you deliver me or someone else?
  • What are your philosophies on pregnancy, labor, and postpartum care?
  • Are you reachable during an emergency?
  • If you are wanting a natural birth definitely ask their thoughts on birthing without an epidural.

Call your insurance

This is a very important step. You may already know how much they will cover, but calling and double checking with your insurance and making sure you know what you are going to be responsible for financially is vital.

If you are picking a new doctor for your pregnancy, make sure that they are in-network.

What to do in your first trimester of early pregnancy, make sure to call your insurance! Early pregnancy is the first time for this.

When you are on the phone with your insurance make sure to take notes the whole time of all things said. Write down the day and time of the call and make sure to ask for the call reference number and the name of the associate you talked to.

I know this sounds like overly cautious nonsense- but hear me out. With our first baby I called to check on our coverage. We were in an unusual insurance position.

They told me our new baby would be 100% covered. I said great! Then we got a $2,000 bill in the mail after she was born.

I called the insurance again and now magically she is not covered. If I had the call reference number and name I would have easily been able to fight it.

But I didn’t, so we had to pay $2000 we didn’t have. Take my advice people, be vigilant!

Things to avoid in early pregnancy

Your first trimester is a little bit of a whirlwind and there are a lot of changes you need to know about as you get through your early pregnancy.

So what do you actually need to avoid from your first trimester to your last (not including food, we’ll get to that):

  • Smoking and Drinking
  • Be careful about what medications you use, there are a lot you can’t have. Check with your doctor for a list of what they recommend or you can check here as well!
  • Avoid hot tubs or really hot baths
  • Don’t change the kitty litter
  • Be careful with lifting or exercise, anything you were doing before pregnancy is usually fine!

What not to eat during pregnancy

This is always a hot topic with early pregnancy because it is hard to avoid foods when you are craving them! Some things you’ll be able to have a little of, and you’ll just have to use your best judgment on those.

Make sure to talk to your doctor about this as well!

Foods to avoid in your first trimester of pregnancy

Foods to avoid during pregnancy:

  • Raw or undercooked fish and meat
  • Fish high in mercury like swordfish, tuna, king mackerel, and shark
  • Deli meats (there are some mixed reviews on this saying you can have sparingly or if heated)
  • Raw eggs
  • Unpasteurized milk and cheese
  • Raw sprouts
  • Limit caffeine to less than 200mg per day

Need a little help with all these to-dos? Check out the Ultimate Pregnancy Planner.

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Pick out a prenatal vitamin

There are a ton of options out there for prenatal vitamins, and all are not created equal! In early pregnancy your body is changing so quickly you need to give it the right nutrients to keep yourself going and little one well taken care of.

Why should you take prenatal vitamins in the first trimester? Well there are a lot of great reasons.

  • Help support your overall health no matter how many cheeseburgers you crave
  • Reduce the risk of preterm birth
  • Reduce the risk of birth defects

So how do you pick out the pill perfect for you? Well first consult your doctor during your first trimester, your first appointment is ideal.

When you go in it would be easier to have a couple of options picked out already and ask your doctor which they would suggest.

The best prenatal vitamins contain DHA in them, my doctor explicitly said she wanted me to be on one with DHA in it.

DHA has been proven to help baby’s brain development, so it is super important!

I personally had an issue with a lot of DHA vitamins because the iron in them made me sicker than a dog. I had to take gummy vitamins instead because they were the only thing that didn’t make me puke.

So follow your doctor’s orders and if you have an issue talk to them to figure out a solution. Here is a great option for anyone who is like me and can’t handle normal pills.

Plus it’s on Amazon subscribe and save, double win!

Start research what you need for baby

This will be one of the most daunting things that you take on in preparing for your new little one. So do not procrastinate and absolutely start looking in your first trimester!

You’re going to go ahead and start deciding what you want/need for baby then add it to your registry as you go. This will be the easiest way to keep track of everything.

I always recommend an Amazon Registry because you can add products from literally anywhere! Plus they give a killer free baby box with your first gift registry purchase over $10.

Here is a quick step by step to starting a registry and getting your free baby box:

  1. If you aren’t a member of Amazon primestart your free trial here for an Amazon family account!
  2. Create your Amazon Baby Registry profile.
  3. Add whatever you’d like to your registry! You do not have to finish it now, so picking out baby must-haves is a great place to start.
  4. Order $10 of product off of your registry. I would do something essential like wipes or diapers.
  5. Once your order actually ships you can now go claim your free Amazon Baby Box. Go to the check status section of your Amazon Baby Registry.
  6. Click the claim now button and add the Amazon Baby Box/Welcome Box to your cart.
  7. Apply the $35 promo to waive the cost of the box.
  8. Place your order! You should get an email about your box in a couple of days.

Once you’ve got that set up it’s time to do some research. There are a lot of things out there that people think you need for babies that you really don’t.

Absolutely ask your friends and family what they liked and used, but there is a wealth of knowledge online from other mama’s that you should not ignore!

Here are a few posts that you can use to decide what you really need:

You can also join our Baby Prep Bootcamp where I share all my best tips on getting ready for baby!

I include what you absolutely need (along with a free checklist), how to get your budget in order for before and after baby, and so much more!

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Start taking pictures in your first trimester

I know you see progress pictures of pregnant women all over the internet. This is a beautiful part of pregnancy, the human body is amazing!

Regardless of if you want to share these photos on social media or not, take these pictures for yourself! I’m not one to share a ton of pictures of myself on the internet, but I have all these progress pictures from my first pregnancy and they are so precious to me.

With my second I was so busy I didn’t stop to think let alone take pictures and I so regret it! You’ll be amazed to compare your progress from week to week.

Take pictures to track your pregnancy progress in your first trimester

Tips for getting good DIY pregnancy progress photos:

  • Pick one place to take the pictures and stick with it.
  • Make sure your background isn’t super cluttered, a blank wall works best!
  • Try to pick a spot that has a decent amount of natural light.
  • Wear fitted clothes when you are taking your picture so you can really see that belly.

If you are interested in more details on DIY Maternity photos check out my post here!

Decide how you are going to announce your pregnancy

This is the fun part of the first trimester! How you are going to share your joyous news with the world can be traditional or creative.

It depends on what you want to do! This is all you. You can check out our Pinterest board below of ideas for announcing pregnancies.

Here are a few things to think about when deciding how to announce your pregnancy:

  • When are you going to do it? Will you tell everyone at the same time or do you want to wait till a little later for those not so close to you? Some people prefer to wait till after the first trimester is over so the more precarious part of pregnancy is over. Other’s prefer to just tell everyone so they have support if something goes wrong. This is completely up to you!
  • Do you want to tell people in person or online?  This might differ depending on who you are telling. Some people we wanted to tell in person like our parents, whereas others we just let find out when we announced on social media.
  • Do you want traditional or something more reflective of your interests? You’ll likely decide on this as you search for ideas. The traditional route is so classic, but a little onesie saying ‘ready player three’ is just too cute to handle.

Need some ideas? Here are some super cute options from Etsy:

Announce your pregnancy with a onesie in your first trimester
Announce your pregnancy with a tee in your first trimester
Announce your pregnancy with a card in your first trimester

Get your finances in order

This is a big big deal. Can you afford a baby? As a mom who has lived on $1900 a month with a 4 person household, I completely believe you can!

Your first trimester is the perfect time to figure this out. Set yourself up for success by planning and budgeting!

If you haven’t set a budget yet, find out how to make a budget that works for your family here. 

A budget is the thing that is going to set you up for success! Make sure you are honest with yourself when setting one up.

The first thing you need to do is see how much it is going to cost for you to have this baby. Call the hospital and usually they can estimate the cost with your insurance plan.

Ask the hospital if you can start making payments on it now so you can ease the burden later.

Planning financially for a baby in your first trimester

The other big cost you are going to run into is daycare. There is a lot that goes into choosing who will watch your precious bundle.

Make sure to start looking for daycare or in home care in your first trimester so that you are completely ready for when your little one gets here.

This will also give you the opportunity to ask all the questions you need to ask before they get here.

Before baby gets here, try to live on the same budget you would be on when they arrive. This will help you acclimate and figure out what you need to tweak so that you can make it work.

I cover this topic more in-depth in my free eBook! There is a chapter dedicated to going through getting you ready financially for baby. We go over everything from diaper cost to daycare. You can snag your copy by signing up below!

A Frugal Mom’s Guide to Prepping for Baby (Free eBook!)

I go over the most important aspects of getting ready for baby along with some great tidbits on what you need for baby along with a printable checklist with all the new baby must-haves.

Other things included are getting your finances in order for baby (even if you don’t have a lot of money), getting your home ready, some great classes that helped me a ton, and more!

Sign up to get your free eBook below. 

Here are a few posts on saving money that you can check out to help you along in your first trimester:

Start researching parenting information in the First Trimester

I’m a big proponent of education, but even more so when it comes to parenting. You may have babysat growing up, you may not have.

Either way doing some research to understand what a big life change you are about to embark on is imperative.

Obviously if you are already reading this you are already on the right track!

There are some really great resources out there to get you ready. One book that I always recommend for new parents is Moms on Call.

It is a great book written by Pediatric Nurses that goes over a TON of super useful information for parents from what medicine you should have in your medicine cabinet to what schedule your baby should be on to encourage them to sleep through the night.

The schedules are my favorite part of this book, they were a lifesaver for me as a working mom with my first and a stay at home mom with my second!

Are you ready for your first trimester?

Still having doubts? Have questions? Comment below and I’d be happy to help you out!

Having a new baby is a scary but amazing ride. You are on the cusp of something beautiful and life changing.

I wish I had this kind of information when I was pregnant, oh the time and money I would have saved! Take advantage for my mistakes and get started on the crucial steps now.

Make sure to snag your free copy of my eBook below!

FREE eBOOK: A Frugal Mom's Guide to Getting Ready for Baby 

This eBook covers the most essential aspects of getting ready for your new bundle of joy. From finances to decor to essential classes this eBook is packed full of the info you need to know. 
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