[By Guest Blogger Serena Norr]
After the excitement of announcing your baby comes the surmounting task of figuring out exactly what you need. With all of the products and gimmicks on the market, there is something terribly daunting about a baby registry where it can be challenging to decipher the best brands as well as what products are actually necessary. As a mom of three, I vividly remember adding in so much random stuff when I had my first daughter. I didn’t have the context of knowing what was useful where I ended up with items that were never used (hello, bottle warmer!) as well as others like play gyms that I didn’t need right away. To decipher the junk from the must-haves, we have rounded up our favorite essentials that every new mama-to-be should have.
1. Onesies: Your newborn will most likely go through numerous outfit changes in a day. For a newborn you want clothing that is soft, comfortable, and easy to change. In between diapers and spit up, you are bound to have multiple onesie changings in a day. Also, consider the season when your baby is due to add on leggings, a baby bundle coat, socks, hats, and more, if necessary. For no fuss onesies we like everyday essentials from Carter’s, Gap, and Rabbit Skins with a mix of “stylish” ones from brands like PACT baby, Zutano, Burt’s Bees Baby and Jacadi. Other clothing items to put on your registry will depend on the season (such as winter coats). We also recommend hats, socks, pants and a light sweater.
2. Swaddles: Sleep becomes elusive when you have a baby, but the best way to promote a restful sleep for your baby is to swaddle them. A gently wrapped baby provides both warmth and security that also promotes a restful sleep. Swaddling can also keep your baby warm as it provides a tightness that is similar to the womb. For a traditional swaddle, we love the gorgeous collection from Aden and Anais, and for help we love the soft and knit terry from Baby Swaddle Wrap from Ergobaby.
3. Baby Carrier: As you venture outside with your baby, you will want to help keep them snug and secure. Babywearing provides a great way to transition your baby to the outside world while also maintaining skin-to-skin contact that they crave. Our favorite is the Ergobaby 360, a front and back facing carrier, that allows your baby to rest in a ergonomic frog-leg seated position (C position). This carrier also evenly distributes your baby’s weight and is super comfortable thanks to its wide velcro waistband and padded shoulder strap.
4. Diapers: Think practical when you set up a baby registry. The super cute stuff has its place but you want to make your life as easy as possible, especially during the first few days. One of the easiest essentials to add onto any registry is diapers. Your newborn will go through around 10-12 dirty diapers a day so we suggest loading up your registry with boxes of newborn (or size 1) diapers. A personal favorite is Pampers whose yellow tab turns blue to indicate that your baby’s diaper needs to be changed.
5. Bassinet: During the first few months your baby will be feeding on demand. To keep your baby close for feeding and sleeping, we recommend starting out with a bassinet in your room. One of our favorites is the HALO Bassinet Swivel Sleeper that has a 360 degree swivel so that you can keep your baby close by your bed. It also has a stable base to fit to most beds – providing you with a way to keep your baby at eye level. as Additional features include mesh walls for breathability and gentle lullabies and vibrations to ease your baby to sleep.
6. Car Seat: A car seat is a must-have when you leave the hospital. It is also essential for any adventures that you will have with your baby – both in a car and as an attachment for your stroller attachment. For babies, we love the B-SAFE Car Seat that includes a padded and supportive seat as well as a 5-point harness system where you won’t have to rethread or unhook any straps.
7. Stroller: You will be ready to stroll around to get your baby out and to explore your area. For ease of use, we recommend a stroller that can easily attach to your car seat. We recommend the B-Agile stroller, which thanks to the BRITAX CLICK & GO system, allows your car seat to attach with ease. When your baby is six months old, you can remove the car seat attachment and use the stroller. City dwellers will love its ample storage and those who use a car regularly will appreciate how quick and easy it folds up.
8. Baby Seat: While you will want to nestle with your new baby as much as possible, you will also need a break, to say, shower! A baby seat provides an ease in which you could put your baby down while also gently stimulating them. Our favorite is the Baby Bjorn Bouncer Balance Soft, a classic bouncer, that provides natural movement to your baby without the use of any batteries. It also provides support to their head and neck and can be used from the newborn age through age two.
9. Bath Needs: Bathtime will soon become a ritual that both you and your baby treasure. For newborns, we love the My First Years Sure Comfort Deluxe Newborn to Toddler Tub. This multi-use tub includes a removable sling, a padded headrest, and a compartment that can easily hold your bath supplies. For bath care, we like the non-toxic baby shampoos from The Honest Company and hooded towels from 3 Sprouts.
10. Nursing/Feeding: If you plan on nursing, you will need a comfortable pillow like the Boppy so your baby can lay and you can rest your hands. You will also need a breast pump like those from Medela, which will help you to increase your milk supply – enabling to to have enough bottled milk when you return to work and/or need a break. Another essential is a comfortable nursing bra, like those from Bravado Designs and breast pads to soak in any leakage.
Other registry favorites: a first aid kit complete with a thermometer and a Nose Frida, a humidifier, a play yard for travel, a comfortable glider for breastfeeding, video monitor if your baby goes right in the crib, bedding, laundry basket, and a diaper bag.
About Serena Norr
A writer and mom of three, Serena Norr is the Editorial Director of Little Swappies a company whose mission is to make it easy and fun for families to reduce, reuse, and recycle. As the former Managing Editor of Momtrends, she has covered a variety of topics within the parenting space such as gear, theatre, beauty, fashion, family travel, and more! She is also the creator of Seriously Soupy, a website devoted to soup making, a freelance social media manager, and writer living in Brooklyn.