Ask a mom about her must-haves for baby and the list will almost always be different from any other mom you ask.
Some like cloth diapers while others find ways to save on diapers.
Some insist on an automatic bottle warmer while others find it to be a completely overrated baby product.
So even though every mom will have a different response as to her own top ten baby must haves, here are the ones that I believe will be on most experienced moms list!
Baby Must-Haves No One Told Me About!
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This one is obvious, yeah? But don’t just stop at “I need diapers.”
First, make sure you get yourself a full-on diaper stash. Trust me when I say you will go through these faster than you think and if you don’t stock up, you will run out after a huge blowup at 3 a.m.
Second, whether you plan to cloth diaper or not, pick up a pack or two. Those things make for the BEST burp rags!
Invest in a white noise machine. Nothing wakes a baby faster than the creaking of a floorboard.
I’d also very much recommend a bouncer. Forget the bassinet, this will be a sanity saver! It helps baby feel enclosed and safe, which means you might get more than 20 minutes to do something other than tend to baby. Maybe.
A Milky Saver (if the baby will be breast fed) is an absolute must. This thing saved me well over two ounces a day that would’ve otherwise been absorbed into a breast pad. I would also VERY (!!) much recommend gel pads for those who are nursing. These are just absolute heaven, especially when you’re first starting to feed, and seriously worth every penny and them some!!
If you plan to formula feed, I definitely recommend investing in a water cooler. Don’t waste money on buying individual jugs of “nursery water.” Buy a water dispenser with hot/cold options and you won’t need a bottle warmer either!
You’ve probably heard of this one, but just in case – get yourself a Boppy pillow! These are great for feeding, but also just to lay the baby in in general (supervised, of course!) I love these far more than any regular ol’ pillow.
Health and Wellness
Buy a NoseFrida. Seriously. If you take away nothing else from this post, know that a NoseFrida is a MUST.
Yes, sucking snot is gross…but your baby going to kiss you and spewing boogers in your face is worse. And have you ever cut open one of those bulbs the hospital gives you? Talk about unsanitary! *shudder* I’ve also heard good things about using nasal saline mist rather than the squirt bottles. These came out after I had my own kids, but apparently they are a true game changer.
Stocking up on mittens is also a must. It doesn’t matter how many you buy, you will lose them.
You might think you won’t need them, but that thought process with lead to you using socks on your baby’s hands while waiting for your partner to get back from the store. Mittens are very much needed to keep baby from scratching their face!
Tech for Baby
Invest in a high-tech tracker for feedings and growth. The hospital will probably give you a paper to track feedings, wet diapers, etc. for the first few days (or weeks) of your child’s life.
And then that paper will be spit up on, left at the hospital, or lost in the diaper bag.
Download an app instead! I loved my Feed Baby – Baby Tracker app and still use it years later to keep track of both kids’ growth.
Another “duh” but don’t forget the baby monitor. That said – don’t splurge on a high tech video model! I get it, you want to see baby sleep and make sure she’s okay, but believe me when I say the lower tech ones work just fine. We found ours at a garage sale for $10 and it lasted us two years!
Along those lines, though, I will admit we did splurge on the Owlet Smart Sock. After getting up 10x/night to make sure baby was breathing, I felt like the money was well worth a decent night’s sleep.
Lastly, find a baby carrier you can actually use. This is one where you should definitely poll the audience and ask your mom friends which ones they liked best.
I was desperate for a Moby Wrap when I was pregnant for my first but I didn’t think to try it out before he was born. 16 feet of fabric + screaming newborn + sleep-deprived mom = lots of tears and maybe a few curse words. I bought an Evenflo carrier for my second child and it’s amazing, even a year later!
When it comes down to it, nothing can fully prepare you for the beautiful soul you’re bringing into the world. It’s going to be a lot of frustration, tears, heartache, and exhaustion….and it’s worth every single moment. Invest in the products that will help you keep moving forward and feel strong in your role as a parent. Then let other soon-to-be parents know what worked for you, what didn’t, and more than anything – remind them that it does get easier!