Yay, so thankful for this thread! I was thinking about having the rice socks, too, since we'll be at home--just have to have them ready to go (they are always disappearing)-- I loved sitting in the tub last time, the contractions made it too difficult for me to stand without my knees buckling, plus it gave me some alone time and likely was nice for DH to have a little break, too. I didn't like having all of the attention or people chiming in, I felt a lot of pressure, kind of on the spot, even though I wasn't really "present" enough to notice all that much. But other than that, DH stayed by my side the entire labor and is a massage therapist so he spent a lot of time rubbing my low back and just being present for me. I wanted to have my iPod but never had it ready last time, so I am hoping a bit of music will help take my mind off of some of the anxieties and some of the awareness of other people sitting around waiting for the baby to come. I also hope to use a birth ball this time, it sounds nice to be able to go on my knees and just rock with the ball.
Best thing ever: Sitting on the toilet. Everything would just relax, the contractions didn't feel as intense but the gravity really seemed to help get her into place without me having to stand. Awesome, seriously. Plus, again, I was alone. That was how I realized it was time to push, actually, I was going to use the bathroom so I could take another bath and then I was like, wait a minute, I reached down and could feel her head! I ran out of there naked and said, "I don't have enough time for a bath, she's coming out now!" Haha