Congratulations, you’re expecting your first baby. You are thrilled, and maybe a little overwhelmed about the baby registration process. Rightfully so, it can be daunting task for any first time mom. As a mom of 2.5 year-old twins, I’ve been asked to share my five favorite baby items that I couldn’t live without. Then I asked a handful of new AMC moms to share their favorite ‘can’t live without’ items. Here’s our top 10 list of baby items in no particular order:
Gerber Multi-use Cloth Diapers
We used these thick, absorbent cloth diapers as burp clothes. Of course we received a handful of cute burp clothes as gifts, and I used those mostly for our outings. But these generic white cloths were our quick-he’s-spitting-up-again go-to’s. We had about 20 in rotation so we didn’t have to do laundry everyday and always keep a stash in my diaper bag. Now that my babies are older, I use them to wash hands and faces after meals.
Side Snap Onesies
One of the challenges of being a new parent is learning how to hold and handle your little one with confidence. I believe the side-snap onesies, (long or short sleeve) for a newborn are essential. My husband and I both felt very awkward trying to put a onesie over their head, but the side snap took the fear away. Factor in how much a newborn soils their clothes, there is potential to change onesies multiple times a day. I LOVE all newborn clothes that have a side snap or snaps at the shoulder to make the head hole larger.
Backpack Diaper Bag
I admit, I registered for a cute traditional diaper bag and one not-so-cute bag for my husband to use. Reality is we both use the same diaper bag. And, knowing what I know now, I would have preferred a more functional backpack diaper bag. A backpack bag is much easier on mom’s body and enables you to keep both hands free. It’s hard to juggle a bag on your shoulder (that tends to fall off the shoulder), a heavy car seat in the other arm, car keys, etc. Do your overworked, fatigued body a favor and invest in a backpack. And don’t feel obligated to buy a ‘diaper’ bag. There are tons of bags out there that have just as many compartments for your gear and probably less expensive.
With twins, we spent a lot of time on the floor playing and practicing tummy time. My favorite newborn item is a colorful activity mat with lots of textures and detachable objects. There are many to choose from, pick one that has something overhead so your child can be engaged while laying on their back. We used our mat regularly for the first 6 months, before the boys were mobile.
Car Seat Cover
The car seat cover is one of my favorite and most functional pieces to add (and easily remove) to the car seat for baby’s warmth. The blanket-style design eliminates the need for bulky jackets while the zippered flap provides a custom fit to grow with your baby. Car seat specialist recommends this car seat cover because it doesn’t interfere with the 5-point harness system. Our boys were born in August and we didn’t buy jackets for them until the spring when they were in a regular stroller seat. In the winter we would place a light blanket over their feet and torso and put the cover over the car seat to go for walks. They were always toasty. Above all, if our walks lead us indoors all I had to do was unzip the flap or take it off entirely. It’s easy, convenient, and less expensive than other options.
My Brest Friend Pillow
If you are nursing this is a must have! My Brest Friend Support Pillow is recommended by lactation consultants. It makes nursing that much more comfortable. The pillow is firm to support the baby’s body, and has a special place to rest the baby’s head to bring him closer to your breast. Unlike the Boppy pillow, the Brest Friend pillow wraps all the way around mom’s body and has a back support strap for mom’s comfort. I love this pillow and still use for every feeding at home. (Moms of twins, there is a twin plus size pillow!)
Baby Wearing Carrier
Snap N Go Stroller
I thought we could do without this stroller. I thought wrong. We actually bought our Baby Trend Snap N Go Stroller one about a month after baby’s arrival. It’s basically just a frame your carseat can snap in to. Make sure you get the model compatible with your carseat. The baby and carseat cab get heavy fast, and it’s challenging to carry the baby any great distance, especially if you have to park in a parking garage and then tote the little one to a doctor’s appointment.
First Aid Kit
A friend gave us a first aid kit with all the baby essentials. It included: a bulb syringe, nail clippers, infant acetaminophen, children’s Benadryl, a forehead thermometer, a nose Frida, and saline drops for stuffy nose. The thermometer is the stand out. It’s the easiest to use, even if baby is asleep, squirming, or screaming. I love it. These are all the things we wouldn’t think about until they’re needed, and the last thing you want to do if your child is sick is run to Walgreen at 2 am.
Aden + Anais Swaddle Blankets
Aden + Anais classic and bamboo swaddle blankets received an overwhelming number of votes for best blankets must-haves. We also used these when the boys were infants and still use today, 2.5 years later as lovies in their beds.
Add to the list. What are your “can’t-live-without’ baby items?