Something I wasn’t prepared for when I found out I was expecting is how much STUFF you “need” for a baby.
I use the term need loosely as most of these items are not really necessities, but they sure as heck can make the transition go a lot smoother. When I was pregnant with my first, I spent more time than I care to admit researching all.the.things.
My go to recommendation for the most necessary item to new moms was Fisher Price’s Rock ‘n’ Play – which has recently been taken off of the market (this is another post for another time). So due to the controversy on that, it no longer is on my list but I still have plenty of items that I was SO glad I had or I wish I had thought up before I was up with a baby in the middle of the night.
These are in no particular order besides how they popped into my head:
- Aden + Anais Muslin Swaddles (splurge on the full size 47” ones, not the Aden brand from Target) – these are especially great for babies born during warmer months. They can be used as nursing covers, car seat covers, spit up catchers, they are all purpose. My kids are 5 and 3 and still have/use theirs!
- Swaddle contraptions – my favorites were the SwaddleMe Pods when they were straight out of the womb and the Zippadee-Zip once they started rolling over. These both helped my kids feel more secure and sleep so much better!
- Some form of a baby carrier – like anything, your baby may love them or hate them but I know they allowed me to actually get some stuff done around the house those first couple of weeks! My favorite when they were little was the Infantino Mei Tai and once they had good head control I loved the Tula Soft Structured Carrier.
- Multiple types and brands of bottles – we went through about 10 different types trying to find one that my daughter would take (if you’re wondering, it was the Comotomo she finally succumbed to) – same goes for pacifiers if you decide to use them!
- Nursing pillow – the two most popular brands are Boppy and MyBrestFriend. Turns out nursing is pretty awkward and uncomfortable in the beginning, these pillows help ease the awkwardness a bit and makes it more comfortable for both you and baby.
- Stuff for YOU! Nursing tanks, comfortable clothes, nursing pads (I didn’t have nearly enough of these), etc. Latched Mama is a great brand of cute and comfortable nursing clothing.
- Diaper Changing Caddy – this was probably one of my most used items. I didn’t use it just for diaper changing stuff – you can put anything you and baby need in it and take it from room to room with you!
- Sound machine – turns out babies don’t like quiet. It also helps tune out other noises around the house that may wake them up (we still use one for our 3-year-old).
- Boppy Lounger – great when you want to put the baby down somewhere – it’s a little inclined and can easily go from room to room with you (notice my trend here? Convenience!)
- Fisher Price Sit Me Up – this is for when they are a couple of months old and can start holding their heads up but it’s great for them to be able to sit up on their own, it’s also a nice travel “highchair”
- Load your medicine cabinet: infant Tylenol, gas drops, gripe water, diaper rash cream – have it all on hand because when you need it, you NEED it.
- Baby Einstein Crib Soother: both of my kids loved this and it allowed me to put them to bed still awake – they would watch and listen to it until they fell asleep. Priceless!
- Dock-a-Tot: this one came after my time of having kids (aka in the last 3 years) but I have seen so many people rave about it, I couldn’t leave it off. And I would definitely get one if I were having more kids!
Lastly, I also strongly recommend checking out The Happiest Baby on the Block by Harvey Karp, M.D. if you’re a first time mom (or on a second, third, etc child and haven’t read it yet) – it was such a help for me!
I hope this helps narrow things down for you and doesn’t overwhelm you more. At the end of the day, none of these are necessities. All a baby needs is their mom (and dad) but these things will sure help!