My Baby Registry 'Must-Haves'
After 3 months with my little Riley, I realized what I actually needed (and what I really didn't need) when it comes to all things baby. Let's be honest, for all of us first-time moms, creating a baby registry is kind of a shot in the dark. There are all those websites that tell you to register for 1,000 different items, and insisting you need those things like "wipe warmers" and baby food makers. And for the most part, I was a total sucker for it all. I registered for the deluxe bassinet with all the bells and whistles, an expensive, artistic mobile, and all those fancy multi-piece clothing sets. Turns out, Riley didn't really care about (or even like) any of these! I would have been better off buying the cheaper, more functional items. I quickly realized is that all babies are different, and it takes a while to really find what works for you and your baby. Riley and I are 12 weeks into this journey together, and now, I can suggest my must-haves. Biggest take-away: MINIMAL (and cheap) IS (usually) BEST. So, the verdict is in:
Here is my MUST HAVE list:
- Keekaroo Peanut Changer - The ultimate changing pad! Almost every time I change him, we inevitably get some diaper remnants on the pad. Not to worry - it wipes clean in a jiffy! Don't go through the trouble of buying a changing mattress, waterproof cover and sheets for it, unless you want to wash them after each use!
- Baby Shusher - Life changing! This little $30 gadget makes the "SHHH" noise over and over and lulls your little one to sleep almost immediately. Talk about the "5 S's"... this one definitely checks the "shushing" off that to-do list when calming a baby down. We use it after feeding and changing him at night, when we are trying to put him to sleep. Put it next to the bed and set it so it turns off automatically after 15 minutes. It puts us ALL to sleep! Also - great to bring with you in the diaper bag for cry-free traveling.
- My Brest Friend (breastfeeding pillow) - I tried a few different breastfeeding pillows, and this one is the best. It creates a shelf right under your chest, clips around your waist (so its on tight) and doesn't allow baby to fall in between the pillow and your body. Also much easier on your back, neck and shoulders.
- Boppy Infant Lounger - Forgot to pull this baby out of the nursery closet until a couple weeks ago and its a total game changer. It's a safe and comfy way to let your baby lounge. I prop him on it on the bathroom floor while I shower, on the coffee table while I watch TV or work, on the kitchen counter as I eat or cook, AND in our bed while we read in the morning! Love love love this lounger!
- Burp Cloths - My mother got me a whole bunch of these simple white ones and told me I'd use these all the time... and I do! Not only for burping but for leaky boobs before/during feeding (yes, it's true they are like water fountains when full!). Get LOTS of these, you'll be happy you did, and you'll want to stash them all over your house.
- White Onesies - The most worn piece of clothing. And get every size. At 4 weeks, the newborn onesies are already too snug on my little guy, and we've graduated to the 0-3 month ones. Gerber onesies are thin, and seem to be more comfortable for him them some of the other brands, like Carter's.
- Footed 1-piece sleepwear - It took us about 2 weeks to figure out that this was the best outfit for sleeping in. Not only are the super comfy and warm, but with the buttons or zippers, they are easy access for midnight diaper changes with little disturbance. We put a short-sleeve onesie on under these, then a Halo sleepsack and he's snug as a bug.
- Microfleece Footed Onesies - One-piece footed fleece is a must-have especially in cold New England. He wears them all day and sleeps in them on cold nights. We have a bunch of them and find that he's most comfortable in them, they are easy for changing and you don't have to worry about shirts riding up/socks falling off, etc.
- Halo Sleepsacks - Easiest swaddle there is! Love these wearable blankets. For the first month we swaddled his arms in, but found that he didn't love to have his arms trapped. So, we started leaving his arms out. This worked for a little while, but by 2 months he needed something that helped with the startle reflex, but was still super snug... so, onto #10 on my list,
- Baby Merlin's Magic Sleepsuit - we started using this at about 2 months (even though the smallest size is 3-6 months. It fit fine, and he started sleeping SO much better. He settles down instantly when we put him in it before bed, and he naps in it too. Just DON'T PUT IT IN THE DRYER! It shrunk and we had to buy a 2nd one.
- Halo Deluxe Bassinest - so he sleeps in this, but we got the "deluxe" with all the bells and whistles. Not worth it! We don't use the vibration, the night light, the music or the rocking features (in fact, many sleep programs say not to use any of these when putting a baby to sleep, as they become a crutch and they will have a hard time transitioning away from them). Opt for the HALO Essential Bassinest - much cheaper and all you need. Make sure to buy a couple sets of the sheets for it, as your baby may spit up or wet them.
- Uppababy Stroller + Carseat attachment - Can't say enough about this combo. We bought the Uppababy Cruz with bassinet and the carseat attachment for the Chicco Keyfit 30. We end up using the carseat with the stroller base the most because we are ALWAYS on the go. Early on, I used the bassinet a lot (to keep him flat and also because it was easy to bundle him all up and just lay him into it rather than disturbing him with all the buckles and straps. The actual seat that comes with the stroller we haven't used much. I bought the infant insert for it, but turns out, he likes the carseat better, and when you sit the uppababy seat on the floor it tips way back, so it's not practical for a small baby who spends a lot of time in it - sleeping, transferring between places, etc.
- Chicco Keyfit 30 Carseat - Want the lightest weight carseat, super easy to install, and has an adapter for UppaBaby Strollers and Bob Running Strollers? Yup, this is the one!
- Medela Freestyle Breastpump and storage bags - Super simple (I didn't even need to pull out the user manual!), compact, and comes with a great carrying tote. I'll be bringing this with me to LA in a couple of weeks - and no one will even know its a pump!
- Hatch Baby Rest Night Light - Uses Bluetooth to set up, has a variety of sounds, colors, and really sleek looking. Riley will be using this as a nightlight into his teens ;)
- Moskka Diaper Backpack - Love this bag! It's a cute backpack with tons of storage (lots of little pockets for all his things) and a changing mat. This company ONLY makes diaper bags, so you know they are good ones!
- Infant Optics Baby Monitor - Such a great purchase. This monitor is super easy to use (see my trend?), has a great camera and sound, and the monitor is easy to bring around with you. You can even adjust the angle of the camera from the monitor!
- Ergobaby Omni 360 - The newest Ergobaby carrier. We got this one because it doesn't require an infant insert (you can use this for a 7lb baby and up!). You can wear it so many different ways, but Riley's favorite is front facing out (just make sure your little one has good head control before facing him/her out). We use this DAILY! It has a great little fanny pack at the bottom as well, for your iPhone, keys, pacifier, etc.
- Ubbi Steel Diaper Pail - We got this in white - mostly because it fit in the small space right next to our changing table, but it is great! It fits about 5 days worth of diapers before you need to empty it, but with the cover closed, you never smell dirty diapers, and it's hidden nicely in the nursery!
- Angelcare Bath Support - This is one of our MOST USED items. Riley tends to have many "blow outs" as we call them, and needs a bath pretty regularly, lol. He LOVES bath time because of this. It's basically a little seat for the tub. He sits in this, and I fill the tub up until the water reaches his upper back, and he just could stay in there for hours. It's really safe, and he's comfortable in it! It's easy for mom and dad to bath him, too!
- MotherMed Baby Bath Thermometer - A cute little bath thermometer you just throw in, while filling up the tub. It tells you the exact temp of the water, and if it's too hot or too cold for your little one. This is super helpful and really important to your baby's safety!!
- Ubbi Baby Wipes Dispenser with Weighted Plate - Finally, one last changing station item. We use Amazon unscented wipes, and stick the pack into this dispenser. It makes it really easy to pull out a single wipe (with one hand! - crucial), and keeps the wips moist and fresh (plus it just looks better than the wipe packaging.
Let me know if you have any questions on these! Of course, not all babies (and parents) will like the same items, but these ones are mine and Riley's favorite and hope you like them too!