I never thought of myself as a woman who would start her own business. I had been a speech-language pathologist for 12 years and loved it. However, healthcare is not always a family-friendly environment.

After having three children within three-and-a-half years, I began contemplating my options. I finally decided what I wanted to do: continue to work with people, but in a different capacity. As a resident near Washington, D.C., I began researching possible services needed in the community. I used whatever leverage I already had to help new and expecting parents with the at-times tumultuous transition process of child-rearing.

As many of you probably remember, entering parenthood is a frightening and overwhelming experience. Women are hormonal and tired, while balancing work, friends and family life, including raising baby.

I was working full time when expecting my first child, and had to go on bed rest at 28 weeks. At that time, I was stressing about everything that needed to get done before the baby came. In hindsight, it would have been amazing to have access to a personal expert— someone to turn to for help with the tasks and planning involved with getting ready for a baby. This is where the idea for Nursery Know-It-All was conceived. Wouldn’t a service be great for expecting parents who need guidance on raising children?

A large number of my friends— and friends of friends— soon turned to me for help with certain tasks, such as selecting baby products, locating the best places to register and purchasing the right furniture. More and more people sought my advice on everything from pediatricians to breastfeeding and playgroups.

As the business of baby planning sprouted in cities like Los Angeles, Seattle, Denver, Portland and New York City, I realized an area like Washington, D.C., would fully support these services. As women in metropolitan areas tend to have babies a bit later in life than in other national locales, and tend to be professional women who have little free time, preparing and planning for a baby can be stressful and time consuming.

In towns and cities nationwide, expecting mothers and parents now often rely on the Internet to help them with all things baby. But, there is almost too much information out there; one could spend hours online looking at all of the different high chair options available. And because we live in an era where many of us do not have our mothers or extended family members nearby, raising children, especially while in the working world, seems even more difficult. What parents-to-be need is direction to the resources that best suit their family and their needs.

Upon founding Nursery Know-It-All (NKIA), I started offering baby planning, concierge and customized services to clients. This includes assistance with one’s registry, nursery design, nursery preparation and organization, personal shopping and returning, baby shower planning, postpartum care, bris/baby naming planning— and the list goes on! Anything a client might need help with related to pregnancy, birth and baby’s early care is what NKIA specializes in.

Nursery Know-It-All aims to provide reassurance to parents, and do the legwork of tending to baby’s needs, ensuring parents can focus on their offspring. For example, an pregnant mother contacted me for assistance even though she already had a 10 month old at home. Expecting a second baby, the mother knew she needed a double stroller. And she sought anecdotal advice on the different double stroller options, including when and where to buy such strollers, and what to consider when purchasing them. Chasing after her newly walking 10 month old and working part time, Mom was exhausted and didn’t have the energy or time to do the research herself.

Another NKIA success story involves a mother who didn’t know the sex of her baby. With little-to-no hours in the week, Mom suddenly needed to plan a bris ceremony within the eight days after she gave birth to a boy. NKIA was able to provide a list of reputable places to cater the affair and get the event organized. As someone who had to do this twice, I know what’s involved. The last thing you want to do after just having given birth is to plan an event like this. NKIA aims to take care of every detail, helping parents relax and enjoy their new bundle of joy.

Nursery Know-It-All does as much or as little as clients desire. Some clients only need assistance with registering, while others need assistance with selecting furniture, designing a nursery, finding childbirth classes, locating doulas, interviewing nannies and selecting a service to help with the nanny’s payroll and taxes.

Many first-time parents are unsure how to find a nanny. Beyond providing such assistance, NKIA can help interview caregivers and offer insight about taxes, driving records and whether or not a formal contract with a caregiver seems necessary. Someone from NKIA can also outline the steps and resources involved in finding proper daycare. This includes writing interview questions and a list of things to think about when deciding on a facility.

A satisfied client of Nursery Know-It-All who used the services for locating a nanny said: “I am so glad I took the advice to interview several candidates, because it made me realize more strongly what qualities I was looking for in a caregiver for my child. [NKIA] provided practical advice and helped me think about different scenarios and other things to consider.”

When it comes to Nursery Know-It-All, no job is too big, nor too small, for preparing parents-to-be.

To plan for a little one on the way, visit www.nurseryknowitall.com

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