The ultimate first trimester checklist, full of all of the things to do in the first trimester of pregnancy. Comes complete with a printable PDF!
While you’re battling first trimester symptoms, it’s not always easy to get things done. You’re too busy learning what things to avoid in early pregnancy, how to get your energy back, and how you’re going to announce your exciting news!
But there are a few things that are essential for a happy healthy pregnancy. Below I’ve outlined the things that I think are vital to a successful first trimester. Don’t worry, some of them are fun!
Some links found on this site may be affiliate links. See sidebar for more information, or visit my Policies & Disclosures page.
30 Things To Do In The First Trimester of Pregnancy
1. Announce Your Pregnancy To Your Husband/Partner
I mean, really this one goes without saying. I still felt like adding it though, to remind you to be better than me! I never surprise my husband with a cute announcement!
If you’re able to keep it a secret, try perusing Pinterest for cute announcement ideas. And if you film it, please send it to me. Nothing makes me cry quite like a sappy pregnancy announcement video.
Bonus points if the dad-to-be cries!
2. Calculate Your Baby’s Due Date
If you’re able to remember when the first day of your last period was, calculate your baby’s due date using a due date calculator. Don’t worry if you don’t know! Your doctor or midwife will be able to tell you at your appointment.
3. Start Taking Prenatals If You Haven’t Already
If you haven’t started taking prenatal vitamins already, now is the time to start! Specifically ones with folic acid.
4. Find An OBGYN or Midwife
Searching for a new OBGYN or midwife can be time consuming, but it’s worth it to search around to find the right fit. In order to make the decision between an OBGYN or a midwife, you need to ask yourself what you’re looking for in your care.
You don’t have to decide everything about your birth plan right away, but it’s a good time to start thinking about it. Ask local moms who they recommend, read reviews, and meet with a few different doctors if you must. Remember, you can always switch later.
5. Make A List of Questions For Your Appointment
You probably have a lot of questions about your pregnancy and baby! Start making a list now because you’ll likely forget some of them once you’re actually at the appointment.
Take it from someone suffering from severe pregnancy brain. You’ll be so caught up in hearing that little heartbeat that you won’t remember all of the questions you wanted to ask!
6. Set Up & Go To Your First Appointment
Whether you’ve decided which OB or midwife you’d like to give birth with or not, you still need to be seen! Set up your first appointment, and enjoy hearing your little one’s heartbeat for the very first time.
7. Research, Research, Research!
It’s time to get to reading! Don’t get overwhelmed! There’s a lot to look into. Prenatal testing options, do’s and don’ts, insurance, birth plan, the list goes on. But don’t worry! The number one thing you need to focus on is fueling your body with healthy food, plenty or water, rest, and relaxation.
There’s plenty of time to get everything in order, but the earlier you start, the better.
8. Create A Pinterest Board (or Ten)
While you’re planning and researching, go ahead and create a Pinterest board for inspiration. Save all of the helpful articles you can find about pregnancy, birth, and postpartum care, and save images to get your creative juices flowing for creating a unique nursery.
9. Find A Creative Way To Announce Your Pregnancy
It may be hard to keep the exciting news to yourself, but most people recommend waiting until the second trimester to announce your pregnancy. Even if you don’t wait that long, you should have time to plan something unique and cute to announce your pregnancy to your family and friends.
10. Begin Documenting Your Pregnancy
It’s never too early to start documenting your pregnancy! You might not have a bump yet (or, if you’re like me, you may have a huge bloat baby in the first trimester), but at the very least you can begin filling out a pregnancy journal.
It’s fun to look back on your thoughts and feelings from your pregnancy, so write down as much as you can! Check out my post about documenting your pregnancy with ease for my tips on keeping track of your symptoms, baby bump photos and ultrasounds.
11. Make A Pre-Baby Bucket List
I’m not going to lie, I was so exhausted the first trimester of both of my pregnancies, I wasn’t even awake long enough each day to think about what all I needed to accomplish during the pregnancy. If you have more energy than I did, it would be fun to create a pre-baby bucket list!
Start by writing down the things you know you need to have done by the time the new baby comes. The best way to do this would be to start a note on your phone so you can jot the ideas down as they pop into your head. You can plan it out more extensively later.
Try to make it fun! Don’t just write down a bunch of chores and errands. Think of things you would enjoy doing before the baby is born, like taking a trip or getting an expensive massage.
12. Learn To Manage Morning Sickness
If you’re unlucky enough to experience morning sickness, you might be wondering how in the hell you’re going to make it through the first trimester at all, much less accomplish any goals or tasks.
My first pregnancy, I experienced no morning sickness whatsoever! The second time around I wasn’t so lucky…
Check out my post about natural remedies for morning sickness to see how I managed to keep morning sickness at bay. And remember, it will pass, and it will be more than worth it!
13. Download A Pregnancy App
Pregnancy apps are a super fun way to track your baby’s development, along with the symptoms you can expect each week. My personal favorites are Ovia Pregnancy and The Bump.
14. Start Thinking of Baby Names
Choosing a baby name can be exciting, romantic, and fun! Or… it can be a stressful bummer. What starts out as a fun game for many couples quickly turns into an exhausting chore as it feels like you burn through every baby name list out there without agreeing on any names with your partner.
Whether you start early because you enjoy it, or because you know you and your S.O. aren’t going to agree on anything, you might as well get on it!
Check out this list of Unique Baby Names You’ll Fall In Love With!
15. Start Taking Baby Bump Pictures
Many women will not be showing in the first trimester, but take this time to take “before” photos! Besides, your body is already changing more than you realize. You’ll want plenty of pictures, even of these early days!
16. Go To The Dentist
Our dental health changes while pregnant. I’m not a dentist, so I can’t even begin to explain to you why or what exactly happens, but it’s more important than ever to take care of your teeth. It’s just one of the many “joys” of pregnancy.
17. Get A Belly Balm or Make Your Own
You still have time before your belly begins stretching to accommodate your growing baby, but it’s never too early to begin prepping your skin for the upcoming changes. Opt for an all-natural belly balm or lotion, or make your own belly butter using my special recipe!
18. Start Budgeting
It’s no secret that babies are expensive. Between hospital bills and all of the products and clothes your little one will need, it’s best to start budgeting for your new arrival as soon as possible.
If you don’t know where to begin, check out my post about preparing for baby on a budget. I also got you covered with free baby checklist PDF printables, so you can get an idea of exactly what you need to buy before baby comes.
19. Check Your Medications (or Herbal Lifestyle)
If you’re on any medications or supplements, you’ll need to check in with your doctor immediately to make sure you can continue taking them or find alternative solutions.
Don’t forget, natural doesn’t always equal safe! There are herbs, natural remedies, and essential oils that you should avoid while pregnant. Please do some research (beyond a quick Google search or a chat with an unlicensed distributor) and speak with a professional herbalist or doctor regarding herbal safety during your pregnancy. For example, I’m not using my goat milk chamomile loofah soap while pregnant because clove bud oil should be avoided while you’re expecting.
In fact, I use essential oils very sparingly during pregnancy and avoid some of my favorite herbs altogether, even when there is no hard evidence to suggest it’s been proven unsafe.
20. Start A Baby Registry
Start a baby registry and share it with your family and friends! As you may have noticed, Amazon is my jam. That’s where I suggest moms-to-be create their baby registry.
Not only is it easy for people to order things off your list and have it shipped directly to you, they can send you Amazon gift cards in lieu of picking items off of your list.
You can even adjust the settings to allow people to go in on big ticket items together!
21. Start Buying Maternity Clothes
It’s not fun when you suddenly realize none of your clothes fit. In fact, as I write this, I currently have about 3 pairs of pants that I can still squeeze into. My maternity pants from when I was pregnant with my son finally bit the dust, and all of my other maternity attire is suitable for the Summer, and it’s currently still Winter.
So, take it from me! Start buying maternity clothes early so you’re not stuck with nothing to wear for a couple of weeks!
22. Begin Looking Into Your Postpartum Options
Will you stay home? Return to work? How will this affect your budget? There’s not much I can say on this topic as everyone’s situations will be different. But it’s time to start weighing your options. Keeping your finances in order throughout your pregnancy and being prepared for those precious first few weeks home with your baby is vital.
No one wants to stress about money while battling the baby blues. That’s a recipe for disaster!
23. Stress Less!
Yes, yes. I know. It’s easier said than done. But stress isn’t good for you or the baby! You don’t want to have a high-strung baby, so drink some pregnancy safe tea, kick back, and (try to) relax!
24. Get Plenty of Rest
I probably don’t have to tell you twice: Get as much rest as you possibly can! It’s hard when you work or have other kids, but your body needs it. There’s a reason we feel so drained and tired those first 13 weeks. Our bodies are working on overdrive to create another life!
It’s hard to feel guilty about taking a nap at 3pm on a Tuesday when you remember you’re a badass for turning sperm into a living, breathing human being.
25. Drink More Water
Hopefully you’ve already been drinking enough water because your body needs it. But if not, now’s the time to make sure you’re getting all the hydration you need. Your body is going through so many changes and it’s working extremely hard to provide for your growing baby, so it goes without saying that you need to drink plenty of water.
Track it if you must! I usually fill two large mason jars up and stick them in the fridge each night and make it a point to at least finish both of those by the end of the next day. It helps tremendously!
26. Start A Light Exercise Routine
If you’ve already been exercising, then that’s great! Continue on after talking to your doctor or midwife about possible modifications.
Otherwise, it’s time to incorporate some light exercise into your daily/weekly routine. Take a walk every morning, or give prenatal yoga a try. Just remember not to put too much stress on your body. If you’re used to running a mile every day, you may be able to continue doing so while pregnant. For those of you who aren’t used to running, it might not be a great idea to suddenly start now.
Just talk to your doctor and get in tune with your body.
27. Eat Healthier
Eating vitamin rich foods is more important than ever during pregnancy. Unfortunately, our cravings don’t always fall under the “healthy” category. Don’t feel bad for splurging every now and then! But you definitely need to make it a point to think of food as fuel, especially during the first trimester.
And don’t forget, while it’s cute and funny to say you’re eating for two now, you don’t actually need to increase your caloric intake just yet. And once you do, it’s not doubled.
28. Cut Down on Your Caffeine Intake
Not to alarm anyone, but caffeine intake has been linked to numerous issues during pregnancy. Don’t worry, you can still enjoy a cup of coffee in the morning if you absolutely need it! But the less caffeine you have, the better. Again, always talk to your doctor or midwife. But one cup of coffee a day likely won’t do anything to harm you or the baby.
This is more for people who drink coffee or tea all day every day. You’re going to want to cut down on your caffeine intake for the next few months.
29. Treat Yo’ Self!
You deserve it! Take the time to rest up, take care of your body and mental health. Go get a pedicure or a massage, or spend extra time doing things you enjoy to decompress. This will help your stress levels, and with baby on the brain, I know how hard it can be to relax.
30. Get Organized
Psst… I have a secret. Getting organized is important for all three trimesters, not just the first. That’s because preparing for a new family member takes a ton of planning and care.
As your nesting urges kick in more and more, you’ll find that getting organized starts to come more naturally as your pregnancy progresses. It’s all part of the process. Mother nature knows how to guide us through this crazy time. It’s how we’re able to make things work when it seems impossible. It’s how we’re able to stay up all hours of the night feeding, burping, and changing a cranky newborn. It’s how we make it through birth and parenthood, period.
Don’t feel overwhelmed or helpless. Your instincts will kick in and you’ll make sh** happen one way or another. But if you start organizing your life now, you’ll have more time for the fun stuff later.
It’s much more enjoyable to organize your baby’s nursery and cute outfits than it is to go through all of the clutter in your storage closet. So get started when you have the energy, Mama! You can thank me later.
First Trimester Checklist (PDF Printable)
Did you find this article helpful? What’s on your to do list for the first trimester? Let me know in the comments below!
If you liked this post, don’t forget to pin it for later: