Preparing for a new baby is enough to drive you crazy! Aside from all the hormones and changes your body is going through, you have the endless amount of items required for motherhood – highchairs, bath toys, pacifiers, bedding, wipes warmers, clothing, baby booties (yes, baby booties – as if Junior is going skiing in his first month)…the list is endless! It is truly amazing that someone so small could need so much!
And as the Baby Oven, you’re probably long past overwhelmed. Everyone wants to share with you exactly what you need – from your mom to your mother-in-law, your BFF to your neighbor. Everyone seems to know just what is best for you! The websites, the books, the registries, the advice – it’s all with good intention, but it’s also enough to make you want to go off the grid with your newborn!
In our effort to help you maintain your sanity, we have boiled it all down for you – we’ve taken the nice-to-haves and the I-would-likes, the don’t-you-need and the you-must-haves – and come up with the top 5 essential items you need to have when baby arrives. We’ve excluded items like a perfectly smocked outfit for Baby’s 1st Portrait and a well-funded college fund as there’s always time for those; we’ve omitted a full children’s library and a plethora of plush stuffed toys and opted for those items that a new mom cannot live without – so, here we go!
Happy Fall Ya’ll! Yes, ‘tis the season for autumn leaves and candy corns, apple cider and pumpkin patches. And right about now, thoughts are turning towards the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.
But, before you start stuffing the turkey and decking the halls, you have other fish to fry. After all, you’re about to become a new mom! As you’re waiting for your baby’s arrival, we’ve got your Preparing for Baby Checklist to make sure you’ve got everything you need when your little one arrives.
- Bedtime for Baby: Yes, there may be a lot of things you want for your Baby’s nursery, but when it comes right down to it, there’s only one item you have to have – the crib! Often times, this large piece can take 8-12 weeks to order so be sure you’re ahead of the game. Do your research, decide what you want and buy it. Once everything arrives, don’t procrastinate but put it together in the nursery; make sure all the pieces are there, that everything works like it’s supposed to and have it ready for Baby’s homecoming. After all, when your little bundle of joy wants to sleep, you want to be ready!
- Diaper Duty: It’s true. Your baby will spend all her time eating, sleeping and yes, pooping and peeing. To
be able to handle this onslaught, it takes many supplies – wipes, diaper cream, changing pads, diapers – yes, loads and loads of diapers! A key item in all this diapering is a good, sturdy diaper bag. You want something that will hold up with wear and tear but is easy for you to put on your shoulder or your back and tote around with your child. Look for roominess because you’ll be amazed at how full you will pack it – clothes, diapers, food, toys and more. Keep in mind your husband may also use it when it’s Daddy’s Day Out so think twice before buying a Kate Spade diaper bag in pale pink. Most importantly, once you have your brand new diaper bag, make sure you keep it stocked as it will become your new BFF!
- Food, food and more food: As a new parent, you’ll find one of the most amazing discoveries is how someone so small can eat SO much and SO often! So get ready for your little guzzler and make sure you have a good supply of “What if I’m planning to breastfeed?” you might ask. Bottles are still wonderful to have because if you pump and store your breast milk, not only can you take a break from the every-3-hour feedings, but your husband can also get in on the nighttime fun and help out! There’s been a lot of research and studies on what are the best types of bottles for babies, so do some research or ask your OB or pediatrician. Look for BPA and phthalate free as you definitely don’t want scientifically engineered materials going into your baby. If you’re planning to formula feed, talk with health professionals and other moms about the best type of formula to use. They are sure to have recommendations and probably even samples that you can try until you decide what’s best for you. And, while we’re on the topic of bottles, we’d be remiss if we didn’t include a breast pump (for all our nursing moms) as a must-have when it comes to feeding!
- On the go: Car seat, car seat, car seat. Yes, this bears repeating because it is so important. In fact, you can’t even leave the hospital without one! This is another area where you want to do your research and ask around before you purchase. Then, well in advance of Baby being born, read the owner’s manual and install the car seat in your vehicle. Many local fire departments will actually hold safety inspections, allowing parents to come by and ensure car seats and safety restraints are installed properly. And, a piece of advice — do this all sooner rather than later because you never know when Junior will make his debut!
- Wheels: While we’re on the topic of car seats, let’s chat strollers. After you first come home, you may be a bit homebound as you try to establish schedules, napping and feeding routines — basically adjust to this new little person in your life. Then the cabin fever will set in so you’ll want a good set of wheels. A stroller is the perfect way for both you and your baby to get out, enjoy some freedom and some fresh air. It’s great for you as soon as you’ve been given the go-ahead by your doctor, and it’s wonderful for your baby to get out and see the world – without having to be around a lot of people or go to stuffy, indoor places. Some new moms prefer a “travel system” complete with car seat and stroller; others prefer a lightweight, more compact stroller. There are lots of options so find what works best for you.
At the end of the day, there are millions of things you – and others – can buy for your baby. And this surely doesn’t mean you should refuse those showers gifts! But, as you’re stressing about everything you need to have, focus on the basics. It really comes down to eating, sleeping and changing diapers (those endless diapers) – and when that’s not happening, getting out for some quality time with your little one. So deep breaths and relax – it will all work out just the way it should. And you and your new baby will learn together!
The Baby Pibu Team
- Thermometer: Hopefully, you won’t need to use this but a fever in a newborn can be a serious matter, often requiring hospitalization to rule out meningitis. So having a baby thermometer – and knowing how to use it – can come in handy, especially for new parents.
- Bottle Brush – someone has to wash all those endless bottles, and a bottle brush makes it easy. It also gives Daddy something to do in his “spare time!”
- Onesies – whoever invented these knew what they were doing! Onesies are great under outfits or, in the proper temperature, as THE outfit. Simple to wash and dry and with easy access for diaper changes, onesies may just be the perfect clothing item.
- Burp Cloths – again, a wonderful, yet simple invention, probably originating with the cloth diaper. As a new mom, you will go through more of these than you can count. You should always have 2 on you and probably another 2 within reach. You’ll thank us, we promise.
At the end of the day, despite all the baby showers, registries and endless books and websites, it’s all about eating, sleeping and changing diapers – and when that’s not happening, you have the ability to get out and about with your baby. And as for everything else, it’s just decoration!