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Planning Checklist for New Parents

Parenting is hard and having a newborn can mean sleepless nights for parents. It’s important to prepare for the support you will need – and enjoy – after baby is born.

How will I take care of myself when I am tired or overwhelmed with a new baby?

☐ Get regular rest whenever I can
☐ Eat healthy and easy-to-prepare meals and snacks
☐ Get outside a little everyday
☐ Exercise when my healthcare provider allows
☐ Ask for help and support

More ideas: _________________________________________

How will I manage the many emotions that come with having a new baby?

☐ Learn about how emotions and stress can change with a new baby
☐ Take care of myself with naps and time for me
☐ Share the highs and lows of being a new parent with others
☐ Reach out to friends and family when emotions are strong
☐ Visit Perinatal Support Washington for more resources

More ideas: _________________________________________

How will I support my baby’s development?

☐ Learn activities, songs, books and games I can do with my baby to enhance development and early learning 
☐ Make daily interactions fun and full of language, eye contact, touch and responding to baby
☐ Understand developmental stages
☐ Go to the library, parks, petting farms, pumpkin patches and other free or low-cost activities

More ideas: _________________________________________

How will I connect with other parents?

☐ A PEPS Group, parent group or support group
☐ Hospital or birth center resources
☐ Pre-natal/Baby & Me exercise classes
☐ Co-op preschools at local community colleges
☐ Faith-based options
☐ Online  and social media

More ideas: _________________________________________

How will I develop parenting skills and get info on baby care, like feeding, fussiness & crying, allergies, sleep, and more?

☐ Connect with other parents to learn what’s working with their babies
☐ Find lactation support
☐ Take ongoing parenting classes
☐ Read books/articles by experts in the field
☐ Find local professionals and services that will help me

More ideas: _________________________________________

How will I get help with practical tasks after baby arrives?

☐ Ask for help with house cleaning from family or friends, or ask for it as a shower gift
☐ Ask family for help with errands
☐ Get help with meals
☐ Accept that things might not be perfect for a while and it’s okay!

More ideas: _________________________________________

Create connections for yourself and your baby

PEPS builds community while focusing on the relationship of parents and their babies so that everyone gets off to a great start. Good support strengthens resilience for the next milestone, challenge or change, helps create a good bond between parents and babies, and shapes your baby’s healthy development.

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Join PEPS to create your village

✓ Connecting Seattle-area parents for more than 30 years 
✓ Trained facilitator handles logistics, group communications and parenting topics 
✓ Inclusive of all parents and parenting styles 
✓ Peer support model 
✓ More than 250 Groups a year in King and Snohomish counties 
✓ Financial assistance is available 
✓ Offered during the days and evenings

To learn more and find a PEPS Group that's right for you visit

It’s important to stay connected

Parents need social connections to people they trust and who support them in their new role. Being a new parent can be very isolating. It’s hard to spend hours caring for a new baby. A support system helps you meet both practical and emotional needs.

Research has shown that connections are important to family wellness and baby’s development. We’ve learned that something special can happen in a PEPS Group when given the opportunity to connect with your peers—your neighbors with babies the same age as yours—in a weekly group. Parents reach out, show up, open up about what’s going well and what isn’t. That feeling of shared experience may develop over the 12 weeks they meet or it may gradually grow into friendship. We know from 30+ years of experience and from the research that informs our programming, that when parents help each other, they are really helping themselves.

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PEPS is a 501(C)3 nonprofit organization, founded in Seattle in 1983.

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