the longer i’ve been a mom, you know the whole four months, the more i’m realizing that baby items have such a short life span. everything has an expiration date as your baby grows! the baby industry really makes you think that you “need” 5,000 things to keep your baby happy, clothed, fed, bathed, and content and it’s just not true.
we have a small house and we don’t have a lot of baby stuff. both scott and i agree that we don’t want the house to look like a daycare, but it is easy to think i need this or that. sometimes you really do need things that help entertain the baby while you’re doing something you have to do, such as go to the bathroom or take that shower. why my examples both involve the bathroom, i’m not sure? but it’s true! you have to pee and you have to shower, and if there’s no one else at home, having a play mat or an exersaucer are helpful.
i thought i’d make a list of the things that we’ve really loved having and would choose to buy again and maybe some things we didn’t need like we thought:
*boppy lounger pillow- this was really great for us when Asher was a little baby. we let him nap on it, we put it on our bed and he slept there with us and it laid him at an incline which was nice for after eating. i’d lay a blanket over it though because you can’t wash it and obviously lots of mess occurs with babies.
*ergo carrier- this has been a great carrier for us. in the infant stages it was a little harder to fit him in it but now that he’s bigger and can straddle his legs on either side of the cloth, it’s comfy and great for walks or shopping or whatever i need to do hands free when he needs/wants to be held.
*baby monitor- we have a basic monitor and it does the job. i know some people like the security of having the video and i totally get that. if it weren’t for cost i would have chosen one.
*fisher price rocking bassinet– this wasn’t something i registered but a mom friend got it for me because she loved hers so much and i see why! super easy to transport, light weight, folds up, lays the baby at an incline and easy to wash. asher slept in it every night until recently and it was awesome.
*play mat– my sister got Asher a play mat and he really loves it. i’d encourage you to get one that has things hanging from the top for your baby to grab and probably put in their mouth. also, noise, texture, colors are all a plus. they love to touch and feel different materials and even the patterns are great for them to look at.
*paci- we registered for a couple different types of pacis. nuk and tommee tippee and asher stuck with the TT. he loves them and those have been the ones he’s chosen since the beginning. your baby really does choose the paci in my opinion!
*burp rags- this is kind of a no brainer but i registered for some thin ones from babies r us and let me tell you, those will not do the job. get the cloth diapers and sew some cute fabric on them and use those. they’re thicker and much more absorbent!
*bottles– we don’t use many bottles because Asher nurses, but occasionally when i need to use one we have tommee tippee as well. they are pretty good. i wouldn’t say i’m married to them, but we didn’t try a bunch. i’d say depending on what you choose to do, don’t buy a billion bottles. you won’t need them all. ask your friends, read reviews and do what you think is best and see what your baby likes. again, your baby will probably choose this too!
*aiden+anais blankets– we love these and use them everyday! they are great for sleeping, swaddling, covering their car seat, wiping up spit up, anything. asher cuddles with his and keeps it close to his face when he sleeps and for a florida baby it’s nice and light so it doesn’t make him overly warm. definitely get a pack of these!
*swaddling blanket- this is another one of those things i registered for that i literally used once, and that’s not even completely true. in a fit of rage, asher busted his way out of it and i’ve never tried again. he’s super strong and has never preferred his hands to be strapped down. again, it’s what your baby prefers! some babies love it and it totally puts them to sleep. not the case with my babe!
*onesies dresses?- the onesies with no feet/snaps. it’s awesome to have something for them to wear that requires less work. when you are lacking sleep and exhausted, not having to match up snaps is like a god send. i swear you’ll think you’ve been drugged those first couple of weeks so less is more, my friends.
*cloth diapers- this was a choice scott and i made before asher was born. we asked friends and did a lot of research and couldn’t be happier! i totally encourage you to do it if you’re thinking about it! we love saving money, it’s not a lot of added work and they’re cute 🙂
*socks- if you have a winter baby they are great to have around. they are a little extra cold in the beginning so putting socks on their little toes just helps keeps them warm!
*swing- we have the snug a bunny swing and we like it a lot! asher has spent a good bit of time swinging, sleeping and just resting in it. i’d say it’s not a “necessity” but it was definitely nice to lay him in that when nothing else was working and get him swinging and watch him drift off to dream land! (it’s cheapest on amazon)
*bouncy seat- another not necessary but nice to have item. you have to make lunch, you have to do laundry, you have to clean your windows and sweep. life goes on when you have a little one and you can’t carry them around to do every single thing with you as much you’d like to at times. asher really liked this seat. it bounces and vibrates and at times he’d fall right asleep in it.
*bumbo- a lot of people have the bumbo these days. we got one but asher is a little too well endowed in the thigh area to really be comfortable in his for a long period of time. but i love the idea! easy for feeding, helping them sit up, plop it on the table while you eat dinner and let them be a part 🙂
some of these things are obviously luxuries and some are really necessary. if i could give some advice to a new mom registering i would say less is more. your baby is going to choose so many of the items and you may find that you’re not even using some of the things you thought you would. obviously it’s nice for others to gift things to you and that is totally great! if i could go back, i would have left more items in their packaging and waited to see what i really needed and what i didn’t. for instance, we have a lot of opened bottles that we’ll never use. asher also basically by passed the 0-3 month phase of clothing. i didn’t know he’d be that big, but i could’ve exchanged a lot of clothes for the next size up! also, be aware of the weather when you buy clothes. a lot of the cute cold clothes i bought him was never worn. sad sad sad. i know that the nesting phase pulls you in and makes you want to wash and clean and open every little thing, but try to resist! we returned a lot of things and were able to get other things we really needed for Asher. again, this is just my experience and opinion, but i wish someone would’ve told me these things. but i also know that the fun of having a baby and being a new mom is doing all of these things, so it’s definitely not the end of the world if you want to indulge 😉
the most important thing is the new little baby. snuggle and kiss and hold that baby as much as you can because it flies by. no bouncy seat, paci or blanket is as important as that!
also, another thing i wish someone would’ve really stressed to me, like sat me down, looked me in the eye and told me is…the first month will be really hard. like really hard. you will not be sleeping, your lower region will feel like hell, your boobs are going to look like pamela anderson and you’ll feel a bit self conscience about that, your baby may not eat as well as you’d like causing fussiness and irritability, and you may not want to be around anyone. all of this is a-ok. like more than ok. IT GETS BETTER. after the 4 week mark, i felt like i was finally above the water. still treading, but at least i was breathing. after month 2, you don’t remember the first month which is good and bad. good that it couldn’t have been that bad if you’ve already forgotten, bad because it’s so hard to remember all the little moments. WRITE DOWN EVERYTHING! write your birth story as soon as you get a few minutes. your thoughts, your feelings, every detail you can remember. a friend of mine gave us a memory box filled with 365 index cards for every day of the year. each day scott and i write down a memory so that Asher will have his first year of life documented well. it takes the pressure off of wanting to write down every little thing, but picking out just one small thing is fun! take a billion pictures. who cares how many you take and if they’re good of you or not. just snap away. you’ll love that you have the pictures to look back on. laugh off all the craziness. i peed in my pants, asher projectile pooped in the middle of the night and i ran into a wall i was so tired. all of this is part of the new mom stuff. you just need to laugh. don’t worry about doing everything perfectly. love on that baby and all else will fall into place. have someone clean your house for you. someone who doesn’t want to hold your baby, but just wants to do your laundry, clean and make you dinner. an invisible maid if you will. sounds mean, but it’s not. you’ll need the help. let people help you, but don’t feel bad if you don’t want to share your baby with every person. people will understand, and if they don’t…well too bad. life goes on. also, have a friend set up meals for a couple weeks. not having to cook is ah-mazing!
this is a lot of shtuff to take in, meanwhile you’re pregnant and wanting to do the best for your little babe. you know instinctively what that is, so do what you know he/she wants and needs! this is just advice that i wish someone would’ve pulled me aside and said. overall, enjoy the baby and try not to eat them cause you’ll want to.