As an expectant mom, it can be tough to wade through all the commercials and suggestions to figure out what’s a necessity and what’s a gimmick. Here’s one experienced mom’s list of what you really need for a new baby.
This list, of course, is not meant to be an exhaustive compilation of everything you’ll need when welcoming a baby. These are just my favorite products, the things that I would recommend to a friend if I only had a few minutes to answer the question, “hey, what do I need for this kid?”
What You Really Need For a New Baby
rock ‘n’ play sleeper
I mentioned in my post about stuff you don’t need for baby that it isn’t necessary to have all the baby-holding devices that manufacturers offer. When you’re narrowing down your list, trying to decide which ones to buy, I cannot recommend a rock ‘n’ play sleeper highly enough.
For the first nine months of B’s life, she slept exclusively in her rock ‘n’ play sleeper. A few of the things we love about it: 1. the back is slightly elevated, like a baby swing, so for babies, like B, who don’t want to lay flat, this is an ideal alternative. 2. The sleeper folds flat and is so much lighter and easier to store and transport than a pack ‘n’ play. I dare say that it isn’t even necessary to own both until baby outgrows the rock ‘n’ play. 3. As the name implies, the sleeper rocks, so at times B would wake up during the night, but we think her squirming rocked the sleeper and lulled her back to sleep.
My Mom didn’t dish out too much advice to us as we prepared for our first baby- even though she’s raised five herself- so maybe that’s why the few things she mentioned stuck with me. One thing she said several times was “you can never have too many receiving blankets.” I believed her (see the whole “five kids” thing I mentioned above), so we stocked up before G was born.
Let me tell you, my mom was right. We used receiving blankets for everything. We did use them for blankets, both to lay G on and to swaddle him in, but we also used them for so much more. Burp clothes don’t provide enough coverage? Use receiving blankets. Don’t want to buy expensive changing pad covers? Use receiving blankets. Forgot your nursing cover? Use receiving blankets. We owned at least 15-20 of them with G and loved them so much that we made sure to be stocked up for B, too.
tommee tippee bottles
I pumped exclusively with both babies, so we know bottles. With G, we tried the bottles that came with the breast pump, but the flow was way too fast. Dr. Brown’s were recommended to us, and we bought them and loved the way they seemed to eliminate G’s tummy issues. What we didn’t love was the process of cleaning the 47 different parts that made up each bottle.
When B was born, I did a lot of reading online and decided to try tommee tippee bottles. They seemed to be just as helpful to babies who experienced gas, but what really appealed to me was the wide-mouth design. I was so excited about how easy they would be to clean. I was right; especially after cleaning Dr. Brown’s for a year, washing the tommee tippee bottles was a piece of cake. And, just like the reviews suggested, B didn’t experience any gas issues while we used them.
I also mentioned in the previous post that I think shoes are unnecessary until baby is of walking age. While that’s true, I think robeez fall more into the category of baby booties. Like the baby moccasins that are so popular, the allure of robeez is that they’re made with elastic around the ankle that keeps them on even the skinniest, squirmiest of baby feet.
Since it’s obviously unrealistic to expect to not own any shoes during baby’s first year, robeez are the perfect solution. They’re affordable and the soft sole is just what experts recommend for the feet of growing babies. The elastic is so effective at keeping the shoes in place that you could order a size up and allow baby to wear them even longer.
Bonus: B has ridiculously fat feet. Robeez were one of only a few brands we found that fit her.
This one is pretty simple. In the car, baby is rear-facing, so you can’t see him. I didn’t buy a mirror before G was born, because I wasn’t going to be that mom that couldn’t just drive without looking back to coo at baby. But then reality happened, and I drove alone in the car with G for the first time. I hated not being able to see him. Was he awake? Was he asleep? Was his neck in a funky position? Oh my gosh, was that tiny noise a choking sound?
So we bought a mirror. It turned out to be really convenient and we used it for both kids the entire time they were rear-facing. It was especially nice to have once they were older and would snack in the car. This type of mirror is so affordable, there’s no reason not to have one for each car.
What do you think of this list? What would you add to it? What do you think I shouldn’t have included?
Be sure to check out my list of 5 things you don’t need for a new baby.
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