Creating a Pregnancy Journal That’s Right For You
You’ve done it! You’re pregnant! You’re growing a person inside your body, and YOU. ARE. AMAZING. Why not document this historic time in your life with a pregnancy journal?! Pregnancy journals are a fun way to keep track of your journey on the road to motherhood. Whether this is your first baby or your fifth, creating a baby/pregnancy journal produces a priceless keepsake of this special time that both you and your little one will look back on for years to come, especially when they aren’t so little anymore.
Why Make a Pregnancy Journal?
There are so many new and exciting things happening in your life right now, how could you possibly ever forget a single detail, right? Sadly, that’s generally not the case and most veteran mothers will tell you that with time (and toddlers) those precious memories fade. Mom brain is real folks and the only way to ensure that those unforgettable moments are never lost is to record them. So... no pressure. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, that’s ok! It might feel like keeping a journal is just one more thing to do, just another box to check but I promise you there are ways to keep a pregnancy journal that fit every level of creativity, every schedule, and every personality. Let’s run through some options below and you’ll be on your way to memory keeping in no time!
For the Creative Mom
If you enjoy being creative or crafty then a DIY pregnancy journal is for you. Creating a DIY journal is the perfect way to add a personal touch to your forever keepsake and it can also be cheaper than buying a pre-made pregnancy journal, so that’s a bonus! A quick web search for “DIY Pregnancy Journals” will provide you with all the inspiration you could ever need to start your journal. Everything from prompts, printables, templates, and highlighting techniques are available for free online and the options are endless! (See below for more info on printables) The best part about DIY is that you have total creative control!
Choose Your Paper
Call me crazy, but it’s possible to recycle and make your own paper for your journal. Homemade paper is so unique and can be embellished with all kinds of personalizations from flowers to fragrances. You could even recycle paper from old children’s books or other unique/special paper. Making and binding your own journal would be a special and unique keepsake as well as a great way to educate your little one about the environment early on! Check out a tutorial here if you’re interested. If making paper isn’t your style you can still bind your own journal with recycled or other special paper. This is still a creative and environmentally friendly option but takes half the work of making paper. That tutorial is here if you are interested.
Alternatively, you may prefer to buy a blank or lined notebook that you can add your personal touches to. Depending on your budget you could use a spiral-bound school notebook or something leather-bound. This journal with colorful pages would make a beautiful starting point. Don’t be afraid to get creative! Try using colored pencils, stickers, washi tape, or fancy pens to decorate your journal to make it unique. You can glue in pouches or envelopes as well to hold small or loose keepsakes like hospital bracelets for example.
Make A Gift
Now that you’ve crafted your own pregnancy journal, why not make one for a friend? A custom handmade journal for someone you love would make a show-stopping baby shower gift! Not only is it thoughtful and unique but it also provides the perfect launching point for “mom-to-be” to start recording her pregnancy journey. She’ll enjoy filling it in, and you will have given a one-of-a-kind gift at a fraction of the cost.
For the Tech-Savvy Mom
Make a Digital Pregnancy Journal
Not the arts and crafts type? No problem. You can always make a digital pregnancy journal. Simply open a document on your computer and start typing about your pregnancy experiences. You might want to insert digital pictures of ultrasound photos, baby bump updates, and of course, your baby’s birth story. If you keep up an active profile on social media, you may want to include screenshots of relevant posts from Facebook or Instagram or even link the page. Similarly, creating a note on your phone would work as well. That way you have access to your journal even when you’re away from your laptop.
If you enjoy writing, you might want to consider starting a blog to record your pregnancy. It’s not for everyone, but if you are interested in sharing your story with the public and potentially monetizing your work, then a blog is a great place to start! Pregnant Chicken is a well-established blog run by Amy Morrison and it is one of our favorites! In a statement to Medical News Today, Amy said “I started the site in 2010 after being frustrated with how scary all the pregnancy sites were. They had tons of options but very little information, so I set out to create a site that laid out the facts in a clear, fun way so that parents could make their own decisions.” Whether you set out with a goal in mind or not, simply sharing your authentic experience can go a long way for potential readers and for your own memories.
For the Busy Mom
While crafting a custom pregnancy journal is a unique and rewarding experience, sometimes it’s just easier to order something off Amazon. There are some beautiful and surprisingly affordable options available online. If you’re a first-time mom this journal published by The Mamahood creator, Amber Gossen is a great option. However, if you’Re on baby number 2 or number 12 take a look at this beautiful guided pregnancy journal.
If you find setting aside time to journal is just too difficult, don’t fret, there are other options. Several companies offer services that will text or email you questions and keep them stored in an account for you. Qeepsake is one of the most popular options. Created by parents of 5, Jeff and Stephanie McNeil, Qeepsake has been explosively successful and even featured on the show Shark Tank. This service offers texted prompt questions, social media account linking, photo uploads, and physical journal printing. Membership options range from free to $7.99 a month with the $2.99 a month plan being the most popular. You can also buy or gift annual memberships for a reasonable price. Other similar services we love are Tinybean and The Short Years. They offer slightly different experiences so be sure to check them both out!
How Often and What Should I Write?
After a while, you might find you’re not sure what to write about and truthfully, entry after entry about doctors appointments and cravings gets a bit mundane. Not just for a future reader but for you, as the writer! It’s so much easier to stay motivated and engaged to write in your pregnancy journal when there’s something interesting to write about. That’s why we have created a master list of prompts, questions, and topics for your pregnancy journal!
Each week, set aside an hour to journal about your pregnancy. If you find you have more time and want to write daily, great! Do what works for you. When it’s time to journal, simply read through our pregnancy journal prompts and choose one to write about. The prompts are straightforward and thought-provoking to help you keep track of this special time. Additionally, we’ve included other pages you may want to include in your journal, including “Checklists,” “Baby Names,” “Calendar Pages” and “Letters to My Baby.”
Pregnancy Journal Prompts
- When I saw the positive pregnancy test, I felt...
- Names I was thinking of that I decided not to use...
- What names did people suggest that I found funny?
- When I first heard my baby’s heartbeat, I felt...
- At my ultrasound appointment, who went with me? What was it like? How did I feel?
- Was this pregnancy planned or a surprise?
- What will my baby look like?
- It took _____ (time) to become pregnant. This felt like it took a long time/happened quickly because...
- My pregnancy symptoms...
- When I found out I was pregnant, the first person I told was… Their reaction was...
- How I hope my birth will go...
- What I want my birth plan to be...
- How I told people I was pregnant and how they reacted: Mom, dad, partner, friends, siblings, coworkers, other kids
- My baby’s birth story...
- How has my body changed...
- What I want to remember most about this time is...
- I’m most excited about...
- I’m most nervous about...
- When I found out, and where I was when I took the test...
- How I celebrated when I learned I was pregnant...
- A record of my pregnancy dreams. (Are they strange, vivid, good, bad, repetitive, scary, happy?)
- Songs I love right now... The theme song for my pregnancy is....
- The music I plan to play at my birth is...
- I chose to/not to find out my baby’s gender because...
- When I found out my baby’s gender, I felt…
- I chose my baby’s name by...
- I chose a family name. Here is what I know about my baby’s namesake...
- My greatest fear about this pregnancy is...
- My greatest hope for this pregnancy is...
- How I think my life will look with a newborn, a toddler, a grade-school child...
- A person I am excited for my baby to meet is...
- My baby will not get to meet ______, but I wish she could because...
- How daddy helped me during my pregnancy...
- Today I am grateful for...
- Something I can’t eat that I wish I could...
- Something I can’t do that I wish I could...
- I plan to breastfeed/bottle feed my baby because...
- Some products that are helping me cope with certain aspects of pregnancy are... Right now I couldn’t live without...
- Advice I have for other women who are pregnant...
- My favorite tv show right now and why...
- A compliment I received and how it made me feel...
- Now that I am pregnant, I finally understand...
- The hardest and most rewarding parts of being pregnant are....
- Doctor visits
- Due dates
- What I want to take to the hospital
- Comfortable clothes to go home in
- Warm outfit to bring home baby in
- A nursing bra or sports bra
- A phone charger
- Preparing baby’s nursery
- Color scheme
- Rugs and pillows
- Crib bedding
- Changing table
- Registering for a baby shower
- Clothes in multiple sizes
- Diapers and wipes
- Car seat system
- Plastic plates, spoons, cups and forks
- Baby essentials
- Car seat
- A way for baby to eat (breastfeeding book or bottles and formula)
- Diapers and wipes
- Onesies and zip up jammies
- Warm hats
- Burp cloths
- Safe place for baby to sleep
- Sling or carrier
- Birth plan
- Who will be in the room
- Pain management plan
- Doula or birth attendant
- After baby is born
- Holding baby
- Skin to skin contact
- Medications and vaccinations
- Questions for the doctor
- Am I gaining an appropriate amount of weight?
- Am I getting enough nutrition?
- How can I get more sleep?
- Which medications are approved for use during pregnancy?
- Is it okay that I’m feeling crampy and/or spotting?
- Which exercises are okay for me?
- Which vaccinations should I get?
- Let’s discuss my birth plan.
- What will labor and delivery be like?
- Who will deliver my baby?
- What are your rates of performing c-sections?
- What should I avoid eating?
- Which symptoms should worry me?
- Weight gain
- Belly size/bump measurement
- Baby’s stats
- What is baby the size of?
- Energy level
- I think I look
- My favorite outfits
- In the morning I feel
- At night I feel
- Emotionally, I feel
- Baby’s nicknames
- Lists of names I like
- Lists of names my partner likes
- Draft sheet for baby names to see which name wins
- Names other people suggested
- Family names
- Names and their meanings
- Middle Names
List of firsts
- First doctor visit
- First maternity clothes
- First time hearing the heartbeat
- First felt the baby move
- When I first felt pregnant
- First hint that I was pregnant (why I took the test)
- First time feeling pregnancy symptoms (first time I threw up, first time I felt dizzy, etc)
Letters to my baby
- I loved you before you were born because
- When I first heard your heartbeat I felt
- When I first felt you kick I felt
- What I want you to know about me is
- What I want you to know about your father is
- What I want you to know about your grandparents is
- When I found out I was pregnant I felt
- My dream for your life is that you will be able to
- I wanted you in my life because
- On the day you were born