I’m pretty new at this myself, but I have a gagillion and one friends who are pregnant, so I thought I would give a list of the things I (and my little man) can’t live without.
- Motherlove Nipple Cream
- Some form of cold/hot pack
- Bamboobies nursing pads
- Cloth diapers!
- Simply Saline nose spray
- Nosefrida Snot Sucker
- Swaddle blankets (These go on Babysteals.com and Babyhalfoff.com all the time!)
- Receiving blankets (Ross and Marshall’s have good deals on receiving blankets)
- A video monitor
- Moby or Boba wrap
1. Motherlove Nipple Cream: A good cream is a must have! Pure Lanolin works too, but I feel this gave more immediate relief. Earth Mama Angel Baby also makes a cream which is supposed to work really well, but I have not tried it. Both are a little pricey, but trust me, it’s worth it!
2. Hot/Cold pack: When your milk comes in you will need relief. Sometimes hot is best and other times cold. Nuk, EMAB, and others make some especially for mammas. Lansinoh also makes these gel pads which provide some great relief (I got a free pair in the hospital!).
3. Bamboobies: I used the disposable pads for the first several months, but I soon realized that I was still sore and chafed because of them! I finally decided to just buy the Bamboobies gift set and I’m so glad I did! These are so soft and super absorbent. The best part is the waterproof backing and heart shape actually make these invisible which the disposables never will be.
4. Cloth diapers: They may sound intimidating, but they’re not! Super cute patterns and easy to use styles make it almost easier than disposables. No late night Target runs, no loads of trash, and best of all NO poop explosions! Even better, they’ll save you about $2000 over the course of one child. Kelly’s Closet has the best pricing because of their free diaper coupons – just don’t buy unless you get the freebie. I have gotten a total of 30% off everything I’ve ever purchased because of those freebie coupons. The Diaper Shops facebook page has the most helpful mammas out there if you ever have any questions.
5. Simply Saline: I stumbled upon this at Target and I’m so glad I did. Made especially for babies, you just squirt a tiny bit in their nose and it loosens up all those boogies. We haven’t had any bad nights because the poor little guy couldn’t breathe. Just a squirt of this stuff and then #6 and you’re good to go!
6. Nosefrida Snot Sucker: I kept seeing this and didn’t want to try it. I finally did because little man’s nose was all plugged up and the hospital had warned us not to use the bulb syringe too much or it might hurt his nose. This can’t harm their nose and is dishwasher safe!
7. Swaddle blankets: We didn’t have any to begin with (receiving blankets are just too small), but we had a HALO sleep/swaddle sack which actually worked well. Unfortunately it got too hot way too soon. I finally decided to get the Aden + Anais ones and they really are as awesome as everyone says. I’m sure other brand muslin swaddle blankets would work too. Target sells a 4 pack for $30 but they are a few inches smaller. Hold out for Baby Steals or Baby Half Off to have them since they are on there pretty often.
8. Receiving blankets: We use these for everything! Especially keeping sweaty heads from sticking to mom’s arms while feeding. You seriously can’t have too many and they work to clean up everything. Look for ones that are really soft. My favorite are some from Carter’s (which I have seen at Ross and/or Marshall’s).
9. A video monitor: We weren’t going to get one because it seemed a little too big brother-y, but my mom convinced us and I’m thrilled. We have one by Lorex and we like it. It takes a pretty sustained noise to turn it on which bothered us at first, but it’s actually nice that it doesn’t turn on at every squeak. The screen stays off unless it hears something, but you can turn it on to check if you want. It also has an infrared camera so it can see in the dark. There are tons of options, so be sure to check them out. A video screen is SO much better than having to peek in (he’s playing in his crib right now instead of sleeping, but I don’t have to go check on him because I can see him with the camera!).
10. A baby carrier: Those first few weeks/months when little one won’t let you set them down, a wrap was a life saver! Not only can I still get things done (and more importantly, still use the bathroom), but he’s happier and almost always falls asleep. Please remember babies should always face you on back or in front and they should be in a seated position with their knees higher than their bottoms! The Moby and Boba are great wraps for those first weeks and months when baby is tiny. As they get a little bigger, a ring sling is faster to put on for grocery shopping or whatever you need. Craigslist is a great place to find carriers for cheap. Often people buy them and give up on them without using them. I assure you, a little practice in the mirror and you’ll be a pro! Also, YouTube has a plethora of great videos to show you how. As they get older a more structured carrier is great. Check out the Boba or the Ergo.