The announcement

It's popular these days to do a big gender reveal, but something simple can be even better. Adding the sex of the baby early on might complicate things, especially if a child desperately wants a little sister or a little brother, but choose a nice environment and take the time to chat with your kid/s and share the happy news. Reassure them that your heart grows with each new baby and you have plenty of love to give to everyone. Tell them of the vital role they play in being a bigger sibling.

Spread the news

It's great to be able to announce to loved ones the impending arrival, but it's helpful to let your child help spread the news, too. You could ask them to tell fellow parishioners or the priest after Mass, and even get the priest to bless your child and your growing belly together.

Honesty is key

Let your child know what to expect from the pregnancy: that you'll be more tired some days, that you might have difficulty carrying out your normal chores, and that you may even have some strange cravings. Get them involved in helping you if they can and let them indulge in any of your cravings from time to time -- especially if it's ice cream!

Plan together

One of the best parts of preparing for a baby is picking out all those little onesies and baby furniture. This is the perfect time to pull out some of your child's baby items and reminisce about their arrival. You can also get their opinions on whatever they think the baby might need or love.

Get practical

If your baby is expected at a time the older child may have a major transition, such as toilet training or moving from crib to bed, decide either to go for it before the baby arrives, or wait until after the birth. It's quite common for some kids to regress when their baby sibling arrives, but it'll sort itself out pretty quickly once the older child feels reassured.

Gift from baby

It's very popular to give a child a gift from their new sibling. While baby dolls are a popular option, you could also get something like matching t-shirts or pajamas to make them feel truly united.

Plant a tree

This is a great idea for those with a backyard. Get your child to help plant a sapling and call it the "family tree." It's a lovely way to show your child that they belong to something that will continue to grow together -- they can even pick out a branch for each family member!

Be patient

Not all kids will be enthusiastic about a new little sibling. Don't worry; as soon as they see that they still have their very important place in the family, all will be fine. Just show a little patience and spend time together talking about their activities, friends, favorite toys.

The delivery

Whether you're planning a home or hospital birth, explain to your child what is going to happen and what to expect when you return. Make sure that you have found someone they feel comfortable with to look after them while you're delivering the baby, while hopefully hubby is by your side.