A chest freezer may sound like an odd item on Dad's prenatal checklist, but if you have the space for and means to buy a chest freezer, I highly recommend it. A chest freezer allows you to buy in bulk, prepare in advance and stock up on extra until such a point that the bundle of joy is more mobile. If you are short on space to fit a freezer, you can always throw a changing pad on top and use it as a changing table for the baby.
Since coming home from the hospital after the birth of our son, we've gotten large quantities of food from family, friends and neighbors. It's been so much that it far exceeds the capacity of the freezer compartment of our refrigerator. We would never be able to finish it all before it spoils, yet will definitely eat it in the near future, so we stuck it all in our chest freezer. In addition to helping manage the influx of gifted foods, it allowed us to stock up on things before the baby ever arrived.
As part of the nesting instinct, expect that your wife or partner may buy extras of everything in preparation for your new arrival. A chest freezer helps accommodate any extra groceries that make their way into your home. Remember, you may not be able to get to the grocery store with pre-baby ease and frequency. You can leave a pregnant woman alone for short periods of time, but you can't do the same with a newborn.
Getting things done becomes a much more difficult proposition. Every errand you need to accomplish takes on new logistical weight, food shopping included. You're not supposed to take newborn babies out into crowded public places like shopping centers for a least a month, so you can't just bundle him or her up and take them with you. In the case of a c-section birth, the mother's recovery time will be much longer and will need much more help, again making trips out of the house more difficult.
Some foods that freeze well, or can be purchased frozen, include:
- meatThe function of a chest freezer is just as useful as your child ages and the amount of food you consume on a regular basis may exceed the store you have available in a refrigerator or freezer.
- soups and stews
- baked goods, cookies, unfrosted cakes
- spaghetti sauce
- juice concentrate
- pre-made dinners
Big box stores like Best Buy and Home Depot usually have small chest freezers for anywhere from $150 on up.