My Newborn Must Haves
As most of you know, I had a sweet baby boy a few weeks ago! He was my third and I feel like I finally had everything together that I loved and wanted, to make coming home smooth and wonderful. I thought I would share the things that made a difference for me! This is a comprehensive list because I felt like when I went places they had just a few items, or some for mom, or just for baby, so I wanted this to be a one stop shop for all the items I couldn't have lived without for our first few weeks home with baby.
- BIBs pacifiers
- Ivory Cradle pacifier clip
- Avent bottles, these worked well for my baby, this was the only thing I didn't have the first night and it was the worst. He didn't nurse well and I wish I had had a little bottle to give him some pumped milk to ease my emotions.
- Enfamil formula just in case milk isn't coming in and you are stressed about how much your baby is getting. Fed babies are best. I had no idea what I was doing with my first and looking back I realized I was slightly starving her because my milk supply was so low! I wish I would have had someone tell me to supplement at night or after feedings to see if it helped with fussiness. We supplement our little guy a couple ounces every night.
- Lou Lou & Co gowns are superb for middle of the night changes, and their top and bottom sets are great for carseat rides
- Sleeper footie jammies that have the double zip (easier for diaper changes, baby doesn't get cold, carters brand has these), and you really only need 8-10 because you are doing laundry so often. I bought way too many clothes and realized I only needed max 8 newborn outfits and then 10-15 of 0-3 month outfits.
- Swaddleme sleep sacks have been a game changer for me, I am terrible at swaddling and a tightly swaddled baby is the difference between them sleeping and not. Or Lou Lou has beautiful swaddle blankets if you are good at swaddling!
- Huggies newborn little snugglers diapers these are hands down the best for new babies. I had used two other brands and had waaaay more blow outs, but these absorb even their little runny poops. Definitely worth the extra money for that first month
- Butt paste
- Burp cloths
- Bath soap
- Vaseline if you're having a boy and circumcising them
- Cozy blanket to put over them in the car seat, or if it's cold
- Nursing/lounge gowns I just bought some from Shein.com, but there are lots of cute companies that have great nursing gowns! I took one to the hospital with me and that was marvelous
- Nursing bra I got the classic nursing bra from Target and love it
- Nursing cover for you if people come over and you're uncomfortable, or also doubles as a carseat cover which is coooool
- Nipple shield if your babe has a hard time latching!
- Lanolin nipple cream
- Breast pads
- Haakaa breast pump is so nice to help with engorgement and catching the let down that goes to waste anyway! You just suction it to the opposite breast you aren't nursing on and it will catch your let down!
- Breast pump most insurances cover a breast pump and it is nice to have if you are engorged, baby is napping a long time, you are going back to work, need a break from nursing and dad can help with feedings!
- Pain medication for those afterbirth contractions! Ibuprofen helps with inflammation, get a prescription from your OB. If you're in pain your body cannot heal as well, make sure you are taking care of yourself and managing your pain! I am a nurse and know from experience and school that "powering through" pain isn't helping, it is hurting your body!
- Hospital goodies keep everything they give you in the hospital! The mesh undies, baby nose sucker, thermometer for baby, pads, witch hazel pads, and lidocaine spray all help in the healing process
- Carrier/Sling I love my Ergo with the infant insert, but I know people love Wildbird and Solly wraps! I just couldn't ever figure out the wraps.. embarrassing, I know. A carrier is definitely needed for those who are bringing home a baby to siblings. I need my arms to wrangle my other two chillins.
- Yummy high calorie/healthy snacks I feel are essential. I spent about $200 in snacks the week before my baby was due. Almond butter biscuits, guacamole & hummus packs, granola bars, trail mix, fruit/veggie trays all from Costco. Fruits and veggies also help with easing constipation. If you are nursing you will need extra calories and you are just huuungry all the time. Bring some in your hospital bag and you will thank me later.
3. BIG ITEMS
- Co-sleeper bassinet ok people I did a loooooot of research into this. I didn't want something that was hard to wash, or wasn't portable, or was so small it only fit them for two months. I decided to go with the Comfy Bumpy bedside co-sleeper. Having the side go down was also really important to me. I love reaching over and scooping him out in the middle of the night, being able to lay my hand on his tummy if he gets restless and my arm doesn't go numb, and putting the pacifier in if it falls out. You can raise one side to incline the bed and that has helped sooo much with his spitting up. You can fold it down and pack it away for trips! I only wish it had wheels on one side and that the bassinet could come off and be set around the house. But I have loved it. Having a bassinet along with a crib is nice as well if you have a guest room and you and your partner can take turns sleeping by the baby while the other gets a good few hours rest.
- Maxi-cosi car seat definitely worth it. We bought a super junky carseat with our first, I was only looking at price. It didn't last more than two kids and I was afraid they would die the first month they were in it. The Maxi-cosi car seat is affordable, amazon has it on deals for around $100! It is very cozy and supportive for newborns, looks sleek, and the entire thing comes off to wash it. I am sold.
- City select stroller I bought our double stroller used and have been blown away. You can buy a single stroller and then buy another seat to make it a double, you can add the car seat adapter so you have baby and toddler in tow, the wheels are heavy duty and easy to maneuver, huge basket underneath for items, does not break the bank! The one con is you have to take the seats off to fold it down to put it in your car. I didn't mind this because we go on walks allllll the time and hardly put it in the car. If I am putting it in the car then it isn't a big deal because I have to take the carseat off anyway! If you only have one child and this seems inconvenient, then maybe a different brand would be better.
- La-z-boy rocking chair or whatever brand you prefer, but a nice rocking chair. I feed the baby in the chair allll day, sit in it in the middle of the night, rock them to sleep, and cuddle other kids on the arms of the chair. Having a nice chair may seem expensive but it provides so much comfort, back support, comfortable sleep because it reclines, and definitely worth the investment; especially if you plan on having more kids.
- Crib I just found a vintage designed crib on OfferUp to use. There are lots of beautiful cribs, I love thrifting to reuse and recycle! Find something you will love forever
4. MUST HAVES
- Communicate you need to have open communication with your OB or midwife, and your partner and family/friends. Tell them what you need! What is helping, isn't helping. Write down questions when you go to appointments and if you feel they aren't listening to what you need then find a different doctor. Newborn life and delivery is hard and scary and you want to surround yourself with people you trust
- Birth plan kind of goes with communication, but if you have a specific idea then write it down and give it to people who will be involved in the birth
- Knowledge about postpartum issues. Postpartum depression and anxiety is very real. Make sure you tell your partner and doctor if you are experiencing severe depression, suicidal thoughts, or intense anxieties. It is normal to feel anxious and scared after a baby, but you know yourself! If you are feeling especially depressed or anxious, please please seek help.
- Rest, funny right? But for real. When baby naps, nap, dang it! Ask for help, sit and relax, let your super human amazing body heal, and give yourself grace. There will be time for dishes, dinner making, and clean houses, but never again will you have those moments with your teeny baby.