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If you have a new baby or are pregnant, here are some tips to make the first few weeks at home with your baby easier.

--If you can, try and stock up on everything you'll need for baby before he/she is born. It will be much easier if you don't have to start running out for diapers, etc.

--Try and cook a few meals and freeze them in the weeks before you deliver. Unless you want to be ordering take-out every night, you'll need to have something quick to make in reserve.

--You've heard it before, but sleep when the baby sleeps. No one will care how clean your house is or how fast you got out your thank you notes. You owe it to your baby to be well rested.

--Consider keeping a journal the first few weeks. It is such a special time, but often the days become a blur when you are trying to remember them later.

--Ask any visitors to wash their hands before they come into your house. Consider trying to keep all toddlers away from baby for the first few weeks.

--Clear your calendar for the first month or two after baby is home. You don't know how you'll be feeling and you may not want to have as many visitors as you think.

--If you buy your layette ahead of time, have it all washed and ready for when baby comes home. You'll have plenty of laundry to do already!!

--Space out your help. There is no need to have your mom, sister and best friend helping you on the same day. If you do, you'll find that after a week or two everyone is gone. You'll need more help at the end of the first month when the baby isn't sleeping all day anymore.

--Never hesitate to ask for advice, no one expects you to be perfect. Call your pediatrician if you have a question. Nothing is too trivial...this is your baby.

--Also, ask for help when you need it. Don't try and do everything on your own. This is a hard job.