Before I became a mother, I was constantly doing my mommy research. I read TONS of blogs and watched videos on YouTube on different opinions of newborn must haves. I made my registry after hours of this. Keep in mind, no list will be the same as the one you find with your newborn. But, it’s good to have somewhere to start. Below I put together a list of things that I found to be total life savers with our little one. Some of these may seem like a no brainer, but they all make life with a newborn much easier!
1. THE DOCKATOT
This thing has been a serious life saver. Our daughter totally refused to be in a bassinet. In order to get more than an hour of sleep at night she had to be in our bed. We weren’t comfortable just letting her cosleep on our mattress with us, so I had my mother-in-law pick up the DockATot at our local retailer (we found ours at Buy Buy Baby). Before I had her, I thought this product was a total waste of money. I figured it was too expensive for some piece of fabric and padding. Boy, I was SO wrong. I would keep one at each grandma’s house if I could! Having her in the DockATot gives us the comfort of having her in our bed and the peace of mind knowing she is at reduced risk for SIDs (if the product is used correctly of course; check out their safety page to learn more).
2. INGENUITY BABY SWING
As young as a week old, our daughter absolutely loved being in her swing. It made it easy for me to be able to clean up or get chores done with her somewhere I could watch her. The Ingenuity InLighten Cradling Swing & Rocker gives you the best bang for your buck. It has the capability to swing in 3 different directions with 6 swing speeds, and the super soft seat can be detached as a vibrating rocker seat. The seat can recline in two positions and the cover is easy to take off to machine wash. If that wasn’t enough, it has the option to play your own music for baby with the built in AUX cord. No baby friendly music on your device? The swing has different sounds and melodies to choose from. I can’t rave about this swing enough. It is all around perfect for us.
3. AN ELECTRIC BREAST PUMP
Like I said, some of these should be a no brainer. If you’re planning to breastfeed, I highly recommend getting an electric pump. Before I actually used a pump, I figured the manual one would be just fine. I was so wrong. I started pumping when my milk supply was too much for my daughter to handle. Using the manual one made my hand ache and took so much longer than an electric one. Fortunately, I was gifted the Lansinoh SignaturePro double electric pump. I will never go back to the manual. It has so many settings to meet your own preferences and is so convenient. The pump can also be converted to a single pump which makes it easy to pump while I breastfeed on the other side. It’s also super easy to clean and take with me on the go, which is a major plus!
4. GRIPE WATER
If your little one is gassy like ours, which is almost a given, go grab some of this miracle juice. There’s TONS of speculation whether or not gas drops or gripe water actually do something. Well lucky for you, I’m here to confirm that they do. Personally, I prefer to give our baby gripe water rather than gas drops like Mylicon. Specifically, the Mommy’s Bliss gripe water is our favorite. It’s all natural and works like a charm. It helps with gas, colic, hiccups -you name it! It contains organic ginger and fennel extracts which are SO great for helping upset tummies! Mommy’s Bliss even claims that their gripe water helps with teething.. But I’d have to let you know about that once we climb that mountain.
5. CAR SEAT COVER
This is a serious must. A car seat cover is exactly what it sounds like. Why do I rave about this? Well, let’s face it. You have a new baby, or as I like to call them, a germy hand magnet! Your first outing after giving birth usually ends up with you getting stopped by complete strangers. People love babies. With a car seat cover, you can shield the germy world from knowing how cute your baby is. The cover also helps for the winter months as well. Our baby was born in December, so taking her out made me feel like she was going to freeze! I had some peace of mind knowing that there was something keeping the wind and rain out of the car seat. I mean, they’re pretty cute too. There are many sites and companies that offer these amazing inventions. My personal favorite is from a brand called Canopy Couture. This brand has TONS of different styles, patterns, materials and prints to choose from. The Canopy Couture brand is a little more pricey, but worth it because of the quality. The shipping took about 2 weeks and I was more than pleased. If you want one of the many car seat covers/canopies, use my code “COOPERFAM14” at checkout for $50.00 off your order! So really, you only pay for shipping… SO. WORTH. IT.
6. ACTIVITY GYM/PLAY MAT
This is a serious must. Most play mats are 0+ month, so it can be used from birth on. It’s great for the beginning stages because the baby can lay on the mat and study the toys. The play mat is also perfect for tummy time and gives a space that’s always clean and cozy. We use the Infantino Go GaGa Deluxe Twist & Fold Gym for our daughter and love how much it comes with. Another plus with this activity gym is that it easily folds for on the go/storage.
7. SWADDLE BLANKETS
For most people, this is another obvious must. A large majority of babies LOVE to be swaddled. Swaddling gives the baby sense of comfort and snuggle that can help them sleep better. My personal favorites are the Aden And Anais muslin swaddle blankets. These are the holy grail for our family. Our daughter loves to be swaddled but gets sweaty in receiving blankets. Since these blankets are made of breathable muslin material, it reduces the risk of overheating. These blankets are also bigger than the average swaddle blanket, making them multifunctional. I have used mine as nursing covers, stroller cover, burping- you name it! These blankets are a tad more pricey than others, but definitely worth it!
8. SOUND MACHINE
Another helpful item in the past couple months of first-time motherhood has been our noise machine. The sound machine helps calm our baby and helps her fall asleep. Specifically, the SwaddleMe Slumber Buddies Elephant Soother and Sound Machine. This adorable sound machine has a plush elephant companion for her slumber journey. My favorite feature is that one of the noises is running water. There is also a heartbeat and lullabies that equally do the trick. The moment I turn this on, our daughter relaxes. It’s great for on the go, and I’ve had this playing in the car for her so many times. Plus, it’s cute! You can’t go wrong with cute.
Thank you for checking out some of the items that I believe are true life savers for the early stages. I spent a lot of time narrowing down the things I wanted to include in this post. When I asked my fiancé what things he thought were must haves for newborns he gave me two answers: “Number one- the DockATot, for sure the DockATot. Also, a good mom.”
Man, I love that guy.