One thing that I quickly realized when I found out I was pregnant is that there are so many voices in the space and so many differing opinions, it quickly gets overwhelming and scary to know who to listen to. Obviously your OB is a safe bet, but sometimes you want to do a little extra research, ask that one-off, kind of embarrassing question, and not have to have anyone know.
I naturally tend to over-research, but with a baby I feel like as much as you may want to plan certain things out (sleep schedule, feeding, etc.) you can’t accurately predict anything, so what’s the point of jamming all of these facts into your head and then being disappointed when things play out differently than you had envisioned?
With that in mind, I put together a list of the books, apps, and blogs, that I found super helpful and hopefully you will too!
Expecting Better by Emily Oster
My sister-in-law gave me this book and it quickly became my bible for all things pregnancy (before, during, and after). Oster is an economist who has had children herself and shares the facts in a super approachable and easy to understand way. From myth busting the no-caffeine rule to breaking down medical interventions during delivery, she uses studies from around the world and synthesizes the information to make it easy to digest, without pushing her opinion on you. #1 on my list (I think I’ve read through it three times already).
Nurture: A Modern Guide To Pregnancy, Birth, Early Motherhood by Erica Chidi Cohen
This book has been like a more spiritual and earthy version of a How To Have A Baby For Dummies book. It talks through pregnancy month by month, including mantras, recipe suggestions, and things your body and baby are going through. It also includes super helpful, in-depth breakdowns of everything you could experience during labor, as well as 4th trimester how-to’s like breastfeeding tips, what gear you’ll really need, and more. I’m very happy to have this in my arsenal and know that I’ll be flipping back through it as I get closer to my due date and definitely when I have questions on what baby poop is supposed to look like at each stage (can’t wait…).
If I had to guess, I would assume this is probably the most universally used app for pregnant women. It tracks where you are in the process and gives you weekly play by plays on development for baby and mama (in addition to cute size comparisons for baby- she’s currently the size of an eggplant), suggests helpful articles that correlate to where you’re at in pregnancy, and offers a question and answer section.
There’s a big list of food no-no’s during pregnancy, some that I’ve abided by (no tuna or alcohol) and others that I’ve fudged a little bit (caffeine). This app lets you quickly look up particular foods or ingredients to see if they’re deemed ‘pregnancy safe’. It was really helpful for me while we were traveling abroad and comes in handy frequently when my pregnancy brain is craving something bizarre.
There are about 1,000,000 pregnancy symptoms that I experienced, some of which I would normally grab meds for. This app lets you look up medication by name or barcode and will tell you what rating it has in regards to safety for baby. Good to know that when a headache strikes, Tylenol is okay but Advil is a no.
This is the app we used to put together our baby registry. If you used Zola for your wedding registry, it’s a concept you’ll be familiar with; you can register for products from a range of brands that can be found within Babylist’s inventory, but can also ‘pin’ pieces from any website you’d like. If you’re at all like us and not as into pink/sparkly/super gender specific baby stuff, it’s nice to have the option to dig around the internet and find more neutral options.
Admittedly, I’ve been reading Mothermag for years, so this one was a necessity for me long before I was pregnant. I love how they give a glimpse into the lives of amazingly talented and creative women via in-depth accompanied by beautiful photos. It also has a great fashion-centric lean to it. It constantly inspires me and I always love the level of honesty throughout the site.
This has been a favorite for a while, but because the founder of Bonberi just had her second child, she’s done a great job of incorporating recipes and interviews that relate to pregnancy. Especially in my early 2nd trimester when I wanted all of the veggies, this was a go-to.
Well, that’s my list! Curious to know if you have anything else that you found really helpful, whether that be reading material or apps, throughout your pregnancy or beyond? Comment below!