Seeking Advice on What to Bring Friend in Hospital

Updated on August 20, 2008
M.R. asks from Redondo Beach, CA
52 answers

Hi everyone,
A friend of mine is waiting out the rest of her pregnancy in the hospital (high risk twins). I want to bring something to help her pass the time but cannot think of what to bring. Books or magazines just seems so cliche! Any ideas?
Thank you!

2 moms found this helpful

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B.K.

answers from San Diego on

Handheld games, cute cross-stitch projects, or if she has a laptop, she can see if they have wireless internet and she can get on pogo.com or another game site. or maybe some dvd's if the tv in there stinks like mine did! ask her husband what he thinks she would like.

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R.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

If she is a crafty type person how about some craft kits like cross stitch, crochet, knitting, etc. Or maybe there is a craft that she would like to try to learn.
Or stationary to write letters, drawing supplies.

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C.F.

answers from Los Angeles on

Bring a PSP. It's so fun. While I was in labor, I was playing video games and having so much fun I almost forgot I was in pain. :-)

More Answers

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E.N.

answers from San Diego on

How about a little journal so she can journal her bed rest days (: Or some kind of craft? Onsies with some puffy paint, she can do that laying down. Or something else she can make for the babys room?

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B.N.

answers from Los Angeles on

What does your friend like to do? Books and magazines are always a welcome way to pass the time. Also, what is her favorite food? A yummy meal is a great thing when you are stuck eating hospital food for any period of time. Comfortable pj's, word puzzles, coloring books, some snacks she could keep in her room, slippers... Hope you find something great to take to her and that her & her twins are both healthy and happy!!

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J.F.

answers from San Diego on

Just visit her often and bring her yummy food! You can bring her movies that you love. Most hospitals have VCR or DVD players. With the hospital stays with my daughter the biggest thing that was needed was a friend to talk to in the human form (not on the cell). Set up a visit schedule for her with a group of friends/family. Run it by your friend and see when she usually sleeps. Flowers are always great too. Studies say that looking at a beautiful bouquet will make you feel happier.

A good book to bring is Twilight by Stephanie Meyer!!

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J.E.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi - I was in the same situation your friend was in. When I was in the hospital, I was just happy to have my family and friends come and visit. And they would bring my favorite foods. I was in a lot of discomfort so it was hard to focus on books (even though I usually love reading). Hand held electronics games like Sudoku and poker helped passed the time a little. Good Luck to you and your friend!

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E.G.

answers from San Diego on

M., this may be the last time she can get a good night's sleep! I would just find the most comfortable Tempur Pedic like pillow you can find! That will also help her when the babies come. Also a very comfortable nightie or nursing gown if she breastfeeds. No lace! They are just too uncomfortable. How about a cell phone free minutes card so she can keep in touch!!!

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D.F.

answers from San Diego on

How about a manicure kit so she could do her nails? Hand cream and other goodies to make her feel better. I also like the idea of crossword puzzles, Soduku, etc...

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M.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

If she doesn't have one already, bring her a baby book to start filling out. With twins this will take her twice as long to complete and trust me, once they're born, she'll barely have time or energy to complete the pages.

There are some cute ones available at Hallmark stores, Babies R Us, and other stationery store. Don't forget the colored pens and some scrapbook stickers that will make decorating the pages more exciting and fun.

I was in the hospital for a few weeks with my twins and I read a couple of books that gave great advice on what to do with the babies once they're born ex:(scheduling, feeding, and sleeping schedules). I loved The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp and The Baby Whisperer.

Some comforts that I wanted in the hospital were: my own decaf tea bags, a comfy pillow and a fuzzy blanket, slippers and non-slip socks, yummy smelling lotions and anti-bacterial soap (from Bath & Body Works), and my husband was sweet enough to massage my achy feet with these aromatic lotions.

Most of all, keep her company because it can feel pretty isolating to be stuck in a hospital bed all day no matter how long you have to stay there.

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R.L.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi M.,

Here's a few ideas:
1. I second the crochet idea, but 1 skein of yarn will net you about 1/4 or less of a baby blanket. Better make it 8 to 10 skeins since she'd be crocheting for 2! If your friend has access to a laptop and the internet at the hospital, tell her to do a search on youtube.com for crochet. It's much easier to learn from the online videos than a book.

2. If she has a laptop and internet, you can get her a couple of books on geneology and a family tree book (Reader's Digest has a really nice one -- check out amazon.com). Ask her hubby/partner to help you dig up family photos. She can enjoy some time creating a family history for her little one while she waits.

3. More use for pictures -- start a set of waiting for baby scrapbooks (one for each). She could also include messages for the babies: hopes, blessings, words of wisdom, etc.

4. Does she like crossword or variety puzzles? Pennypress has great collections.

5. Tapes or cd's of lullabies to learn to sing to the babies.

6. Ask her if there's anything you can bring her to help pass the time. Or, ask her hubby/partner. What does *she* like to do?

Best wishes to your friend for a safe and easy delivery. I hope she makes it full term.

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T.D.

answers from Los Angeles on

Here are some ideas off the top of my head:

1. Intro kit for knitting, needlepoint or crochet
2. Sodoku, crossword or word search book
3. Epic movies (Gone with the Wind, Dances with Wolves, Titanic, etc.)
4. An entire season of a show she likes or a new show you think she might like
5. A leatherbound diary

Hope this helps and good luck with your impending delivery!!

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D.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

How about helping her start a scrapbook for her twins? Get her the essentials for getting started. Or puzzle books: word searches, crosswords, etc. If she has a laptop, maybe a fun game. Congrats to you, too!

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L.A.

answers from San Diego on

Not sure what your budget is but here are some ideas:

portable dvd player and movies or seasons of a good TV show
portable game player such as Game Boy Advance
an mp3 player with a bunch of good audio books on it
interesting magazines
puzzle books with crosswords, word search, etc
baby books to start filling out
a cross stitch or needlepoint kit
PlayDoh in lots of colors - adults can play, too!
a scrapbook starter kit
Adult coloring books - yes, they are out there - flowers, nature, something she enjoys - and a large kit of colored pencils
Rose Art poster and a large kit of fine point markers
An origami kit

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J.A.

answers from Los Angeles on

I was too stressed out to crochet/knit or even read much! Things that required a short attention span were best: puzzle books, US magazine, etc. A friend of mine brought me a new sweatsuit to lounge around in, and I loved that.

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K.B.

answers from San Diego on

Maybe a hand-held solitaire game or another type. There are lots of different hand-held electronic games. If you plan on sitting with her for a while you can take board games or card games. Being able to spend time with her will make her the happiest so whatever you take she will love if you are there.

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M.G.

answers from Los Angeles on

I would "lend" her a laptop if she does not have one. Give her materials to make her own baby announcements or Thank you cards. Nice pens, paper, envelopes, stamps... a journal.

Bring her some contraband items... Her favorite fruit smoothie, a special craving item...

hope she passes the time in style!

Shell

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S.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi
How about scrap booking? Its a great way to make time go fast and it is so much FUN!!!
She could also make a small painting.
Michael's have tons of GREAT stuff and you will get tons of ideas when you go there.
Good luck!
-S.

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B.V.

answers from Los Angeles on

How about an mp3 player with soothing music, a portable dvd player with some movies, word search puzzles, parenting magazines (past issues)?

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S.B.

answers from San Diego on

What about protable dvd player and a snacky pack of her favs. A funny movie I've seen lately is Knocked Up, Very funny!
I know she'll enjoy anything you can do for her.

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M.D.

answers from Los Angeles on

I was in the hospital for a bit last year and one of the best things a friend did for me was come in and paint my toes...It was such a nice thing and made me feel less blah...

Just an idea.

-M

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J.B.

answers from Los Angeles on

You can go to "Micheal's" and get her a scarpbook for when her twins are born and she can put it together. It will make the time pass. You can walk through "Micheals" and find a hugh about of projects for her to do in there. It will give her something to do. I cross stitch. It was easy for me to pick up. Good luck

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D.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

You could buy her a power sort box, by Creative Memories. This box is essential in getting photos organized. My friend was on bed rest for several months, and she managed to get all of her family photos sorted, labeled and organized. This was very therapudic and productive! It holds 2400 photos, so there is more than enough space in this one little box for her to get the job done. She won't have time to get it done once the twins are born, so this would be perfect!!

To purchase go to www.creativememories.com or via my website, www.mycmsite.com/debbymunar She will thank you for this gift of organization.

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E.A.

answers from Los Angeles on

M. -
I also spent several weeks in the hospital on bedrest with my twins. Lots of friends brought me mags and books; however, two of my friends who know me best brought me two of the best things ever. One friend lent my their laptop so I could email and keep intouch with friends and family while I was stuck in the hospital for weeks. I was also able to watch DVD's on the computer too, which was pretty cool. The TV got boring after awhile. The best thing one of my girlfriends did was buy my an awesome photo album and I filled it with pictures I had been meaning to put it a photo album for years! If you need any other suggestions, just email me. I had great friends and family that got pretty creative with their gifts to help me pass the time.

Good Luck, E.
[email protected]____.com

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M.P.

answers from Los Angeles on

Maybe some Soduku or word searches? Maybe her favorite snacks or soft socks, lotions, other luxury items to pamper herself the last days of her pregnancy...I would love those itmes :)

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E.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

Word search, needle point kit. Other puzzle games. Scrap book starter kit if she hasn't started one. If she has take her some scrap booking supplies.

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S.H.

answers from Honolulu on

Learning to Crochet, using the simple beginner stitch is easy...perhaps bring her a skein of cute yarn, a crochet hook, and a simple beginner's crochet book, and a pair of scissors...and put it all in a cute "crochet" bag or basket as a gift.

That way she can crochet something for her babies.
When I was pregnant, I crocheted a simple square "blanket" (small once since it's for a baby) and a scarf for my friend, and I just used the same simple beginner's stitch for the whole thing. It's great fun, and relaxing and passes the time away...

Also, "Sudoku" gamee books, parenting books too.

Good luck,
Susan

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J.L.

answers from Los Angeles on

I have heard of people taking scrapbooking items to the hospital. Just go to the craft store and get some scrapbooking items and then have a family member bring some photos for her to work on to pass the time. She will also have family pictures there to look at and will be able to think back on happy times. Hope this helps!

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S.M.

answers from San Diego on

When I was pregnant I found that the hormones gave me bursts of creativity and I really enjoyed doing intricate craft projects. Maybe get her a latchook rug kit or crochet project or cross-stitch, something she can do with her hands to keep her busy. Or I also always enjoy word search or puzzle books, devotionals, or a baby-name book if she's still working on that. Or you could put together a gift basket with some light cologne or nice scented lotion/body butter, a hairbrush, lip gloss, some simple earrings, hair accessories, something to doll herself up a bit becuz being in the hospital can be anything but glamorous sometimes. (Well, now that I posted this I see that a lot of people recommended the same things, but that's OK, brilliant mom's think alike! haha)

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D.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

Scrapbooking is a fantastic idea someone mentioned. I have been trying to finish our wedding album before our baby is born. You could also bring her a hand-held video game system...those can be awfully addicting and eat up plenty of hours! (They're not just for kids anymore, heehee)

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S.O.

answers from San Diego on

Maybe you could organize a small baby shower for her and have it in the hospital? I bet that would help to keep her spirits up.

Do you know of anyone who does in home mani/pedicures that would come to her hospital room to give her one?

Other than that:

books, magazines
her favorite food and drinks

Or you could ask her what she needs or wants. When I was in the hospital for a month before my DD was born, I always asked my friends/realtives to bring me food, DVD's to watch, a newspaper to read up on current events, videos of my kids so I could see what they were doing while I was gone, and stuff to read. I would have loved it if someone offered a pedicure or mini massage in my room :).

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S.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

Don't forget to also bring her a nice homemade meal or food from her favorite deli/restaurant. She is probably sick of hospital food.

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S.F.

answers from Reno on

How about some simple starter kits on things like knitting, crochet or cross-stitch. Or, if you know what genre of books she likes, a series of books. Or, if it doesn't violate hospital protocols, a wi-fi connected computer so she can surf the internet and/or watch dvds. Tunes? Is she a music fan? An ipod? Books on CD? Maybe you could schedule some friends to show up, 1 or 2 a day, so she doesn't feel left out?

If I were in the hospital, I would be thrilled with any of the above.

Best of luck to you and your friend!

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J.L.

answers from San Diego on

Hey M., That's great that you 2 kids will be close to the same age. What does your friend like? maybe you can take her some of her favorite music, music is healing, maybe cross word puzzles, word searches, or if she likes to draw or write take her up a couple tablits, does she like cross stiching, or working with yarn, there's so many possibilities, just see what she likes. Hope this helps. J.

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R.A.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi M.,
What about audio books? Or some movies with a small DVD player? A journal such as "Expecting You: My Pregnancy Journal" so she can record and prepare the pages for her babies? Just a few quick suggestions - I'll send more when I think of them.
Good luck!

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S.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

I was still working on thank you notes for my baby shower in the hospital... maybe a tv guide... some goos music... too bad everything sounds so boring. I would say that just your company (and maybe a pint of ice cream) might be all she needs.

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R.H.

answers from Los Angeles on

I was on bed rest for 40 days in the hospital before I had my baby. I'm not sure where your friend is on bedrest at, but if she's at St. Joseph's in burbank, she can hook up a DVD player to her tv in her room! It helped so much to pass the time!! Also, I played a lot of card games! Phase 10, Uno, Skipbo, those were all great to help pass the time! Not only was I on bed rest, but my bed was tilted with my feet higher than my head, so that limited the things i could do! But playing cards really helped a lot! Also, if she doesn't already have a laptop to surf the net with, someone should bring her one! They have WIFI at St. Joe's also and it was so nice to be able occupy my time with that also! Hope this helps!

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C.T.

answers from San Diego on

I just delivered triplets on June 27th and was one hospital bedrest for the seven weeks prior to that. The meds I was on made it impossible to read books or magazines, though she may not be on what I was. Anyway, I'd recommend movies, audio books, junk food (if she's on a regular diet), noteboks or journal with pens, a comfy blanket and pillow, pictures, nintendo ds with brain age games, knitting or crochet kit, cross stitch, any other crafty activites that can be done in bed. I'd also like to say that getting stuff to help the time pass is wonderful, but I guarantee what your friend needs more in the company of people who care about her. While in the hospital, I didn't get visitors as often as I would have liked. I was about 45 mins to an hour away from home and so even my hubby and kids could only come once a week due to the time he got off work and all. Being without those who love and care for you for such a long time can be very hard. So, visit as often as you can. Bring her some flowers and a nice card. Make her feel special. Maybe you could even get her a gift certificate for a manicure and pedicure for when she is out of the hospital and well. And, don't forget to offer an hour or so of babysitting so she can actually go. Just a thought.

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J.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

She could get started on scrapbooking. If you are interested I am a Creative Memories Consultant and can give you some hospital friendly recommendations. Hand held games may also help pass the time.

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N.M.

answers from Los Angeles on

Hi M. -

What that woman is going to really need is a massage, or a few -- you & some friends could pitch in together to pay a massage therapist to come in to the hosp. I used to be an MT for a chiropractor and I was hired to go to the home of a woman who was put on bed rest for several months of her pregnancy. I suppose it would have to be cleared with the hospital. For that matter, perhaps the hospital is already on this. It seems to me that this should be part of treatment for bed-ridden patients, but I have no idea. It would be a good thing to look into for her.

Aside from that -- if I were stuck in bed for days or weeks, I'd sure want something to read -- a good, fat story I could sink my teeth into. So, never mind the cliche & bring your friend a book or two that are her taste. Or, maybe music -- an old boombox & some cd's (am I oldschool, or what?) or, if she has one, fill her iPod with her favorites.

All the best,
Colleen

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A.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

The best gift someone gave me is a hand held game... It has 4 games on it. I have seen it at walmart for about 20 or 30. They also have the ones with one game for 5-10

I was in the hospital for 1 month. They had given me a basket with other snacks and puzzle books.

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J.C.

answers from Los Angeles on

When I was in the hospital for a month with kidney failure my mom arranged for someone (a professional nail person)to come to my room and give me a manicure and pedicure. It was WONDERFUL!!! I was terribly sick and my self image was in the toilet and having someone pamper me felt great. Plus polish on my toes made me feel more girly, they wouldn't allow me to have polish on my nails as they need to check blood ox levels thru the finger tips. I highly recommend finding someone to do this for your friend.

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M.A.

answers from Los Angeles on

My neighbor had the same situation. She used to laugh at me because I learned to knit (gotta do something interesting while watching stupid movies with my husband:). She said she never had the time to sit and learn. Well..who has more time than someone on hospital bedrest?.I brought her a little book on how to knit, two needles and a ball of yarn. She cracked up! At least it was something different.

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H.S.

answers from Los Angeles on

Do you know if she has any hobbies she could do while in bed? Cross stitching (a baby bib)...even if she doesn't do it on a regula basis can help occupy her time. Go to Michael's or Joan"s and see if you find something that she could do in bed to help her pass the time:)
I will prayer for a safe delivery of a healthy baby.
H.

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M.E.

answers from San Diego on

You could bring her a basket of earth mama baby angle items like the postpartum bath soak, massage oil, lip balm, calming aromatherapy spray, herbal heat pack, etc. to help her get though the labor and recover afterwards. I also sometimes like to give matching mama and me outfits for the new mama and baby to either wear as jammies in the hospital or as a little something special to wear on the 1st trip home from the hospital.

http://www.earthmamaangelbaby.com/
http://www.amazon.com/Matching-Mom-Daughter-Baby-Pajamas/...
http://www.myahandme.com/

Good luck!

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J.V.

answers from Los Angeles on

How about some fresh flowers to brighten up the room and some books on tape of her favorite genre so she can just listen on headphones and relax.

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B.B.

answers from San Luis Obispo on

if she is able to bring in her own laptop and it plays dvd's, get her a season of her favorite show. i had to spend some time in the hospital a while ago and tv gets boring, daytime stuff is either court tv, talk shows, or the news. i watched two seasons of ER and it was alot better than regular tv. hand held games, like poker, are good too if she's into that. otherwise, if she's up to it, call and visit frequently. it really breaks up the time.

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K.P.

answers from Los Angeles on

I loved watching DVDs. Netflix really helped pass some time during bed rest! I watched on my laptop. Sudoku or crosswords if she is into that. Nintendo DS or PSP has lots of games that are fun even for us moms.

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D.P.

answers from San Diego on

give her a pedicure. Bring in some movies (and movie snacks!)or games that you can play/watch with her.

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J.D.

answers from San Diego on

How about one of the sudoko games from toys r us. It is a little hand held game for under 10 dollars got one for x mas and its great on passing the time.

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S.Z.

answers from Reno on

Something for her babies might be nice. Even if she's not normally a "crafty" person, she might enjoy doing some embroidered or needlepointed baby stuff, or putting together a pregnancy scrapbook.

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M.M.

answers from Honolulu on

how about dominos. something different.

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