Step-by-Step Guide to Creating a Pregnancy Scrapbook
You would be hard pressed to find a more fleeting time in your life that you want to remember (almost) every minute of, than when you are pregnant. Pregnancy is such an amazing adventure and documenting your personal journey should be an exciting and a sentimental one.
Sometimes it's hard to know where to begin or what you should include in your album. There are so many details--doctor's visits, decorating the nursery, ultrasounds, and all of that overflowing emotion. Here's a way to navigate through all nine months worth...
First Things First
One of the most important things you can do beforehand to aide you in creating a pregnancy album is to keep a calendar handy at all times during your pregnancy. That way you will be ready to jot down events as they happen. By doing this, you will essentially be writing the basis of your journaling directly onto the calendar for future reference. You won't have to worry about trying to remember special moments when you go to scrapbook them, because you will have many other important things on your mind. Believe me, you'll thank yourself for this one!
To tell the full story of your sweet baby's life, you should start at the beginning. However, you can always omit or tweak any of the following "chapters" to better suite your preferences. Since each pregnancy is different, some may want to create several pages to fully capture the details of a chapter, while others can sum it up in one page. The number of pages for each chapter is up to you-whatever will tell your story.
Chapter 1) Conception
It's up to you to decide how much you want to reveal about this process in your scrapbook (as long as it's not too revealing!) For some, conception may be half the journey. If you had difficulty with fertility or other issues, you may want to document your journey. Or you may not.
Consider including the following:
- If you were trying to conceive, was it a secret or was it well-known to your family and friends?
- How did you find out you were pregnant?
- How far along were you when you found out?
- What were your first emotions?
- What was the first thing you did after finding out?
- Any funny stories?
Chapter 2) Spreading the word
The first fun thing about being pregnant is getting to tell all of your family and friends the exciting news.
- Who was the first person(s) you told?
- If you have other children, how did you go about telling them?
- Did you tell everyone right away or hold off until you were further along?
- What were everyone's reactions?
Chapter 3) Month-By-Month
This is ultimately the most important chapter, in which you will want to include the following for EACH MONTH:
- a) A photo of yourself, showing the progression of that growing belly!
- b) A brief journaling of your thoughts and emotions
- c) What are you experiencing? Cravings? Sickness?
- d) If you're brave, you can include your weight and the girth of your belly.
- e) Any other noteworthy information (ex. First time you heard the baby's heartbeat, decorating the nursery, your favorite maternity clothing, etc.)
Chapter 4) Doctor's Visits
You may want to combine this chapter with your month-by-month layouts, unless you have a lot to document.
Try to include:
- Who was your doctor? (or doula, midwife, etc.)
- What clinic did you go to and how far away was it from your home or work?
- Was there a ritual that happened at the Dr's office? (Weigh in, listen to baby's heartbeat, etc.)
- Were there complications that you want to document? Were you a gestational diabetic or have other pregnancy risks?
Chapter 5) The Ultrasound (AKA Sonogram)
Around 20 weeks gestation, you usually get to find out the baby's gender and see the little outline of their body on the tiny screen. As you know (or will soon find out), this is one of the most amazing experiences you will have while being pregnant.
Don't forget to include:
- The sonogram pictures (at least one of the ones that they let you take home)
- Boy or Girl? Did you find out the gender or are you going to wait for it to be a surprise?
- Did you have a 3D or 4D ultrasound?
- What were you and your spouse's (or significant other) reaction when you saw your baby on the screen? Did you laugh or cry?
- What did you tell your family and friends about the experience?
Chapter 6) The Baby Shower
Many pregnant women have gatherings in their honor; don't forget to document your special day. Save a napkin and a few pieces of confetti to include on your layout, along with:
- Who hosted your baby shower and where was it located?
- Who attended the shower?
- What gifts did you receive?
- What games did you play?
- What did you eat and drink?
Chapter 7) Baby Names
What a huge decision it is for you to choose a name for your little bundle of joy! Document the process:
- How did you pick the baby's name?
- Did you look through a name book, use a family name, or decide upon a truly unique one?
- Did you and your spouse or significant other agree on the name?
- What about the middle name?
- Did you choose a girl and a boy name just in case?
- Did you decide to wait until you saw the baby to decide on a name?
- Does the name have special meaning?
Chapter 8) A Letter to Baby
Although not a necessity, writing a letter to your future child is a sweet gesture. Try to include:
- Your feelings, hopes and dreams for your baby
- A letter from Mommy and one from Daddy
- Sentimental thoughts on the journey of your pregnancy
Chapter 9) Labor Day
It's the big day! Time for labor and delivery...this chapter should describe:
- How did you go into labor?
- Were you induced or did it happen naturally?
- Your trip to the hospital (or other place of birth)
- Did your water break? Where?
- Were you ready with bags packed or did the baby come prematurely?
- What were you feeling, physically and emotionally?
- What were your spouse's/significant other's reactions?
- Who was your support system?
- How did you manage pain? Did you go all natural or have an epidural?
- What was it like to see your baby for the first time?
This chapter could go on and on with endless topics! Most importantly, just document those moments you want to remember about the labor and delivery of your special baby.
Be sure to end your pregnancy scrapbook album with a photo of your little bundle of joy!
You will get so much enjoyment looking through this album for years to come...Now just imagine all the scrapbooking that lies ahead!