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Baby Paraphernalia Follow-Up


A pregnant friend just asked me – now that I have been down Baby Lane – what my “must have” baby items were. So I dug up my old post on items that were recommended to me and marked it up with what we had/used. Hope this is helpful!

  • Sleeping: Somewhere for the baby to sleep (initially we used a Pack N’ Play as a bassinet before moving our son to a crib which is now his toddler bed and will be converted to a double bed when he outgrows the toddler bed), a mattress, 2 sheets, 2 mattress covers, a crib bumper (please only use a breathable bumper, do not fall prey to the cute linen sets for cribs that include solid bumpers which the American Academy of Pediatrics has stated pose a suffocation risk), a baby monitor (ended up returning the first one we bought and bought a Motorola MBP36 Remote Wireless Video Baby Monitor which we love – all it needs is some electrical tape over the first few LEDs on the viewer to be perfect!), a white noise/sound machine (we use an old iPhone with a free app – Relax Melodies – and a cheap docking station which doubles as a clock/night light. We waited to start using a sound machine which I consider one of the dumbest parenting decisions we’ve made), newborn pacifiers, and swaddling blankets (Aden and Anais are expensive, but totally worth the extra $$ as they are thin enough that the baby can breath through them if they come undone. We also used SwaddleMe‘s which were great and highly recommended for squirmy baby limbs!).
  • Feeding: A comfortable place to feed baby including a way to elevate your feet, burp rags (10-20 cheap cloth diapers work), bottles (# & type will depend on if you’re breast or formula feeding as some are made to fit with the breast pumps), newborn flow nipples, a small manual breast pump (if you’re breastfeeding & not going back to work right away), a double electric breast pump (if you’re breastfeeding & going back to work right away – note may be covered by insurance – I had the Medela Pump In Style which I liked as much as one can possibly like a breast pump. I recommend not getting it until after you have the baby in case you are not able to breastfeed as they are challenging to resell and you won’t need it for the first month anyway), breast milk storage freezer bags, a bottle brush with nipple cleaning end (the microwave sanitizing bags for your pump stuff and bottles are a huge help!), 4-6 thin cotton bibs, and a nursing pillow (the consensus from those surveyed seems to be My Brest Friend is better for nursing and Boppy is better later for the baby to play on – I loved my My Brest Friend with the small pocket for storage of things like your phone or lanolin).
  • Changing: A changing pad, 2 changing pad covers (I had several times where I needed to use a towel because he went through both covers, but I can count those on one hand), diapers (1 newborn size package even if you’re using cloth – for trips, cloth diapers – if applicable), a small garbage can for wipes & other trash by baby changing station, a garbage can that seals well for the diapers (save yourself a bunch of money by buying one like the Safety 1st Diaper Pail that takes regular sized garbage bags instead of proprietary ones!), a refillable wipes container, wipes, a dresser for current sizes of clothes (top of dresser can be used as changing table if you get a pad that fits it – we bought a changing pad tray for the dresser which has been a good purchase), clothes (10 onesies & 10 footed outfits), 3-6 pairs thinner socks, 1-2 hats, and a going home from the hospital outfit (newborn and 0-3 month size outfits because you don’t know what will fit the baby for cute pictures).
  • At Home: Seat for baby in the house (bouncing/vibrating – we had just a basic baby swing that was gold for things like taking showers – my son would swing and nap just outside the shower. We later bought a jumperoo which was very valuable while cooking and eating dinner.), 1-2 floor blankets, and 2-3 newborn blankets.
  • On the Road: A diaper bag (I used an old gym bag – washed, of course! – which had lot of pockets), a small changing pad, a small container for disposable wipes, hand sanitizer, an extra pacifier, a car seat (we have the Britax Marathon which we have been happy with), a stroller (we have the Chicco Cortina which has a lot of miles on it and an umbrella stroller which we paid $15 and works just fine. Choosing a stroller is like buying a car, I highly recommend that you go to a few stores and play around with them, try to collapse them with one hand, lift them to make sure you can carry the stroller plus a baby, etc.), a Pack N’ Play (good as a bassinet, good for trips to grandma’s and I know several people who use them for toddler time outs!), a baby carrier (if you a drastically different in size to your spouse, consider getting two so you aren’t adjusting straps all the time. I preferred a fabric mei tai carrier, my husband liked the standard Bjorn. This is another item I recommend trying on at the store before buying), a blanket for covering car seat in winter (the JJ Cole BundleMe is fantastic for car seats and strollers!) and a thinner blanket for blocking sun in the car in summer (the Aden and Anais swaddle blankets are good for this too. Now our son is in a  forward-facing car seat, we use the Britax sun shades for our car and love them).
  • Cleaning: A baby bath tub with back rest, baby soap, 4-6 baby wash cloths, 1-2 baby towels with hoods, perfume & dye-free laundry detergent, and a small laundry basket in the baby’s room.
  • Health & Safety: Infant Tylenol & Ibuprofen (dye-free so it doesn’t stain if the baby spits it up), Vaseline (we have never used this actually), zinc oxide cream (diaper rashes – we use max strength Desitin), lanolin (sore nipples or over-washed post-diaper change hands), a thermometer (we use my basal thermometer under his arm because we couldn’t find a baby one we liked), a nasal suction bulb (the one the hospital gives you is great!), baby nail clippers (I still love our Safety 1st Sleepy Baby Nail Clippers), and thin little cotton mittens (so they can’t scratch their face – although we never used these!).

I strongly recommend joining a mother’s club before you go shopping or register to see what you can get cheaply (or even free!) from other mom’s who are cleaning out their garages. As an added bonus you might join a “playgroup” of other expectant moms with babies due around the same time as yours!

* NOTE – All links in this post are linked to products I actually used. Feel free to leave in the comments any other recommended products!

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