As a second time mom I think I figured it out. The most expensive bouncer, playmat and swing does the same exact thing as the less expensive bouncer, playmat and swing. I didn’t say “cheaper” because lets face it, NOTHING is cheap when it comes to kids.. which is another reason why having another boy was fkn fantastic.
With our first son, we went out and bought all the things. There wasn’t a thing that this baby didn’t have. My whole apartment was filled with these things, every closet was filled with these things and our storage unit was filled with more things for future use that I knew he would need (insert eye roll to myself). I had every “had to have” popular item and used maybe 5 of those things.
What have I learned with all the things? That every kid is different and trial and error is a fact. I can tell you what is a “must have” baby item but ultimately its not up to me to say, your babe will decide that for you. For example, Johnny loved the swing, Xander hates the swing. Johnny hated the bouncer, Xander loves the bouncer. Johnny was so big that by the time I took out the Bumbo, he didn’t fit into it. Xander is smaller than Johnny was and loves the Bumboo.
SO, my advice to you is don’t buy the most expensive “thing”. Look for the same kind of item thats not the high ticket price because your baby may not like it and then your stuck with more things, then you have to go back out to get another thing to replace the first thing. It’s an evil guessing game with these things. Just because it’s a playmat from Pottery Barn doesn’t mean my Fisher Price one is any less. Your $145 dollar playmat doesn’t shoot out glitter, stick the baby’s binky back in his mouth and spin around in circles. They are the SAME. The Baby Bjourn bouncer? Please tell me why that thing is $200 dollars?! Does it magically put the baby to sleep? Fisher Price just came out with the “Sit Me up Floor Seat” and mommy groups are going crazy recommending them because their baby LOOOOVES it. I have it and my baby does love it but guess what I’m guessing… one of those higher end companies will be making a similar one soon thats double the price. My whole point to this was before I started rambling was that kids are fucking expensive!!! So buy that Fisher Price playmat!!! And please, no offense to the people buying the Pottery Barn mat. I’m just saying that all these things do the same damn thing.
My Newborn Must Haves:
BreastPump. The Spectra S2 or the Medela?! I’ve had both and prefer the Spectra. I feel like I’m getting more milk and its a faster pump. As for storage bags for the milk, I like the Lansinoh bags.
A good, tight, big swaddle. CopperPearl is my all time favorite go to brand. I also love their bandana bibs, carseat covers and little newborn hats which fit perfectly on those little baby heads. I found them on Instagram and they also sell on Amazon.
Dockatot. People will say it’s not safe for baby to sleep, yes I know 🙄 but my babies survived the Dockaktot and it helped me survive those long, dreaded sleep deprived months.
The Halo. The Dockatot fits right in the Halo. They make a perfect couple.
The Shusher. When we first had Johnny, I would hear my husband VERY loudly “shushing” him. It was annoying and his spit was everywhere. So I looked for an item that mimics shushing and there it was! The Shusher. Both my babies loved the sound of it.
The Nose Frida. Its smaller than the bulb they give you at the hospital and it really works!! Just don’t forget to change and replace that blue filter. A mouthful of snot is not fun. Trust me.
Disposable Changing Pad Covers. I was in Buy Buy Baby one day and saw a bunch of what looked like wee-wee pads for dogs, but they were for babies! I ended up grabbing a pack and I’m so happy that I did. They work amazing for those poopnamies, where the poop is straight up to your kids head, out the legs and everywhere.
Diaper Sacks for those poopnamies that happen about 5-20 times a day. I had the Ubbi diaper pail and I was not a fan. I felt like the diaper/poop smell lingered in the Nursery and just the thought of days old dirty diapers in the same room my babe slept kind of grossed me out. Actually, it totally grossed me out so I discovered Sassy Diaper bags. They smell like baby powder, keep the smell contained and go right into the garbage. I have a sliding door to my deck off the kitchen and put a garbage pail there. All poopnamies go directly to pail.
Playmat. Xander loves looking up at his playmat, in the mirror and at the mobile going around. Any playmat that can do that is a thumbs up.
Crystal Nail File: I found the emory board ones are too rough on little baby fingernails and the crystal nail file is much softer but does the same thing.
Luna Lullaby Baby Nursing Pillow: I’m a C-section Mama and found this to the best nursing pillow for me, especially when I nursed in bed.
Ergo Baby Swaddle: Both my kids loved to be swaddled with their hands down. Xander wanted his hands up for the first month but then would wake up randomly so then I switched him to hands down and he ended up sleeping longer with fewer wake ups.
Love to Dream Swaddle Up. Xander loved this for the first month, not so much the next.
A Bouncer. We had one for Johnny that I had given away because he hated it and I didn’t want to go out, spend more money on a bouncer that Xander may hate as well so I went to “Once Upon A Child.” Its a store that’s basically a consignment shop for littles and bought him one for $20 and he loves it. I highly recommend finding a good consignment shop near you. Ours only takes “softly” used items for re sale and I’ve gotten some amazing finds from them!
A Swing. I was given a swing, and Johnny loved it. I didn’t save it for our next babe because by then, the motor was on its last swing. SO we went out and bought a new swing for Xander and he hated it. We quickly learned that you’re not allowed to return opened, 5 second used items and that you basically just spent money you’ll never get back. Some babies may love it while others, not so much.
Baby Monitor. We went through about 5 of these before we found one that worked perfectly for us. Motorola was not our friend in the baby monitor department. We ended up the a Samsung Brightview and have now had it for over 2 years with no problems. I definitely recommend getting your monitor from Buy Buy Baby because they will take it back with receipt or if its off your registry, no questions asked (at least the one by me does). Also, get one that you can control the camera movement from the monitor so that you can creep in on your baby at all angles. Trust me, you will be staring at that thing more than your phone once your babe sleeps in his/her own crib.
A Noise Machine. I can’t say enough about our LectroFan white noise machine. Theres 20 non looping sounds and they even make a portable one for travel, which we bring everywhere. Both my boys love it, know it indicates bedtime/naptime and my husband and I can’t sleep without it now!
The Hatch. This is a recent purchase and I’m loving it so far. Theres an app to download, and all settings can be controlled through your phone to play music, turn the different light settings on/off , set timers for bedtime/wakeup and so much more. I’m really liking the light on The Hatch for those middle of the night feedings. It’s not too bright and not too dim- its a perfect light.
Primo BathTub. I love love this one. Its perfect for a growing baby. Johnny was in this tub until he was about 2 years old.
JJ Cole BundleMe. I feel this is a definite must have if you’re having a winter baby. It straps right into your car seat and keeps the baby super warm.
A Diaper Bag. Its a must have and one thats functional yet stylish is what you want. I literally had about 6 diaper bags at once and hated them all until I found my backpack diaper bag. You need a diaper backpack, with stroller straps. I actually found mine on Amazon and love it so I’ll link it here. Another diaper bag that I have is the Miss Fong diaper bag, which looks just like the Fawn Design diaper bag but without the high price tag.
Infant Car Seat. I have the Maxi Cosi and love it. Its lightweight and the babe seems comfy in it.
Car Seat Cover. This was one of my favorite finds yet. Having a toddler and it being the Fall season meant we were out and about a lot. It also prevented those old ladies who stick their whole head into your childs face to “take a look”.
A Stroller. Don’t ever join the Facebook group, Stroller Queens and if you do, be prepared to want every new stroller on the market, find and buy all accessories for your new stroller and then try to hide your new strollers (yes strollerS because you’ll end up with like 5) from your husband. I’m totally kidding about not joining them, I’ve gotten a lot of information on different strollers from that group but I have no will power!! I want all the strollers 🤦🏻♀️
Whole point- have stroller regret. I have the Uppababy Vista but wish I had gotten the Uppababy Cruz. The Vista has HUGE wheels and it’s hard bringing it into stores, restaurants and the mall. But, it’s amazing on “all terrain” roads/grass and you can’t beat the big basket underneath. Right now, I’m using my Mamas & Papas Urbo 2 and I’m LOVING it. It’s stylish, sleek and it’s the perfect size to bring into stores & restaurants without taking up a lot of space. I also have 3 other strollers but that’s another blog post for another day!
AND those are my Newborn must haves! Like I said before, all babies are so very different so what may have worked for one may not work for the other. Go to that Consignment shop and find good finds. If your family member or friend is giving away her baby clothes/items, take them all!!