October 31, 2012

Top 20 baby buys for before baby arrives

Off the top of my head and in no particular order, these are the most important things to have on hand before your newborn arrives.  
  1. Co-sleeper or bassinet – to have your baby sleep next to you during the first important months - our baby grew out of the co-sleeper and moved into his crib at 5 months
  2. Wipes warmer - I'll never forget how much he appreciated warm wipes
  3. Lots of very soft newborn receiving blankets
  4. Nasal saline (the kind with a built-in sprayer worked best) and nasal aspirator (the kind with a tube and mouth piece for you to physically suck goo out in addition to having a few of the manual-squeezable kinds around). Don't forget, your baby has no way of blowing their nose for a while.
  5. Changing table & diaper genie - Someone told me these weren't needed, but we used ours for convenience and the genie really does help control smell. We only use the diaper genie for poopie diapers though, to save on $ spent on the expensive bags
  6. Sleep sacks wearable blankets Buy the smallest and next size up, then size up as baby grows. Our 18 month old is still wearing one during winter months for naps and night sleep and just upgraded to size large. Get just the simple, regular polar fleece ones, brand is Halo.
  7. One-piece zip-up jammies - Fleece for cold months and nice pure cotton for warmer months
  8. Baby wrap and/or carrier for keeping the newborn on you as much as possible the first year. We had a moby wrap and bjorn that was given to us and used both at different times.
  9. Breast pump - helps get milk flowing if there are any issues in the first few days and keeps it going when you have to go back to work or be gone for whatever reason (the Pump-in-Style highly recommended) and multiple breastfeeding pillows (boppies) - I'll never forget how sore my arms were those first few months due to holding the baby up to breastfeed without a boppie.
  10. Snuzzler provides extra padding in a car seat for a newborn. Our baby was swallowed by the carseat and his head wouldn't stay up without a snuzzler on the way back from the hospital. Get one of these for sure!
  11. A few simple board books to start reading young. Still one of our favorites is I like it When.
  12. Baby care books - The Baby Book, American Pediatrics, and What to Expect in the First Year to name a few we used religiously - you will know nothing when that baby arrives no matter how much you've read - this is on the job training to the max, have some good reference books on hand - the Internet will just drive you crazy with extreme opinions, stupid debates, or too much or too little or over-hyped information
  13. Burp rags (Gerber disposable diapers double great as burp rags)
  14. Diapers - goes without saying. Have newborn size, and a box each of size 1 and 2 on hand, because they grow fast during the first few months, and you don't want to get caught without diapers. Consider cloth diapers too, (which we didn't do, because breast feeding was so hard to get going that we skipped). 
  15. Carseat - again, goes without saying. Should be rear-facing as long as possible for safety. Ours was given to us and was a Graco.  
  16. A few bottles and formula in the kitchen just in case breastfeeding takes a while to get going - don't worry, babies cannot get nipple confusion during the first few months of life - Playtex® VentAire® Advanced Wide are THE BEST per our amazing lactation consultant
  17. Glider for rocking baby and exercise ball to bounce baby on when he won't sleep - worked wonders when baby won't stop crying during the first few months
  18. Swing - sometimes nothing would work but the swing during the first few months for sleeping or peace from crying - have one on hand - don't worry about using it too much during those first few months - they grow out of it and lose interest in it fast. We preferred a wall-plug-in over a battery powered.
  19. A trusted family member to help keep you taken care of and fed during the first few weeks, so that you and hubby can focus on taking care of the baby. And friends to help bring you meals during week 2-4 while you're still recovering. Thanks to all of our family and friends for their amazing support!
  20. A couple bright toys that lightly squeak and rattle - it's fun to slowly move them around above the baby on the changing table as you start to see them focus and reach and smile
You may be able to live without...
  • Never used a plastic bath tub. We got in the tub with our baby every 3-5 days until he was old enough to sit up, which was about 5 months. This was one of the most special things we would do together during those first few months.
  • Didn't own a crib until our baby was 5 months old. Just happened that way. Our neighbor said they'd give us theirs, and their 2+ year old was still using it until our baby was 5 months - right when he grew out of his co-sleeper. And we're so glad we didn't have a crib to tempt us from moving him into his room too early, because it was really special (and safe) to have him so close while he was so young)
Some useful things for the fast coming months...
  • Bouncer - especially useful for being able to set baby down
  • Bumbo seat - so baby can sit up before they know how, and another useful item for being able to set baby down
  • Highchair for eating - very handy to feed him in when you start to give him solids at 6 months
  • Baby spoons, bibs, baby washcloths for the dining area - he'll be eating before you know it! We have washcloths for baby only in the dinning area to ensure they were never mixed with other cleaning rags.

Baby in Bumbo seat during Christmas 2011 - 5 months old

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