As I embarked on the journey to motherhood over two years ago, there have been quite a few items that have helped me along the way. Especially, if you are a new parent, these are the items that will help make your journey much smoother and less eventful, I promise.
For the Nursery
A convertible crib (one that converts to at least a toddler bed) in the nursery is a must. Having one gives the baby a place that he/she can identify as “his/hers” from the beginning of life. I believe that moms should get a crib versus a bassinet as it encourages independent sleeping habits from the beginning and it minimizes the number of items that you have to buy.
The baby can only use the bassinet for a brief period of time before they have outgrown it. In my opinion, it is not money well spent. On the latter, a crib can be used for at least the first 2-3 years of life. Once the child gets older, the convertible crib can be adapted to accommodate a toddler or older child comfortably.
In essence, you are able to get one piece of furniture that will last maybe five or six years. That is six years of “peace of mind” and convenience that is money well spent. Parents just need to make sure that they keep additional parts for the crib (toddler rail and others) in a secure space where it can easily be found later on.
Obviously, a dresser is used to store baby clothes. But, make sure to purchase a dresser with lots of drawers to keep other baby items well organized. Keeping organized, is most important in having a successful nursery. Many dressers intended for nurseries also have cabinets that can be used to store other items such as baby toiletries (lotion, shampoo), first aid items (thermometer, nail clippers) and even immunization records. I still find this useful today.
Secondly, we house my little one’s changing items in a caddy on top of the dresser and used it as a pseudo changing area when she was younger. She has since outgrown this, but a simple “changing pad” on the dresser makes an instant changing area.
Parents should be mindful to never leave a baby unattended. As soon as a child develops the ability to roll, then it is time to find a new changing area (aka bed or floor, cushioned with absorbent towels or a portable changing pad).
Changing tables are a total waste of money.
Dressers are a great investment for the nursery because they can grow with the child. Cabinets that store extra supplies such as toiletries can later be used to store toys or special keepsakes, toys or art projects.
A glider is an essential furniture item for the nursery. Gliders used to be called “rockers” or rocking chairs, but the term glider is more modern and deemed more appropriate for what is used today. The key is to get a glider for the nursery that can easily be transitioned to any other part of the home. Once the baby has outgrown the use of the glider (no longer is nursed or bottle fed, no longer needs to be rocked to go to sleep or consoled), then this piece of furniture can be easily transitioned to other areas of the home seamlessly. The décor should be kept in mind when purchasing the glider of course.
Vinyl Waterproof Pocketed Bibs
These bibs are great because they remain odor free and stain free despite numerous spills and food accidents. They are wipeable and have a great large pocket for dropped food which helps to prevent bigger messes. I have been using them since my daughter started solids at 6 months and still use them now that she is two years old. These bibs have saved my chairs and her clothes numerous of times.
Munchkin Steam Sterilizing Bags
Each bag can be used up to 20 times. I still have most of my bags left from baby number one so, I don’t even have to buy more with another child. This is a great buy for nursing and bottle feeding mommies alike. The bag can be used to sterilize breastfeeding accessories as well as bottles, nipples and pacifiers.
If you plan on breastfeeding then this is the pump for you. It makes feeding your baby on the go quite easy and convenient. Nursing mothers will appreciate a pump that is portable and relatively quiet during use. There is even a “hands-free” option if you really want to get fancy.
On the Go
Baby Jogger Citi Mini Stroller
We explored many options when trying to decide what to buy. As frequent travelers, having something that was lightweight and portable was very important to us. This stroller comes is an assortment of beautiful colors and varieties to please even the pickiest mommy.
This carrier is all those things that you want a baby carrier to be. The soft padding makes it ultra comfortable for babies and parents alike. A baby carrier is great for all those places where a stroller just won’t work. Think airports, trains, buses, any place where there is a large crowd and you want to keep baby close. I even used my carrier at home, when the baby was fussy and wanted to be held, but I wanted to keep my hands free.
Note: Never use the carrier when you are cooking or you are going to sleep.
A nursing cover is essential if you plan on nursing your baby. I found nursing to be quite convenient especially because I always had my nursing cover with me. This allowed me to be discrete, mobile and yet still fashionable, while giving the absolute best to my baby all at the same time. This is multi-tasking at its best!
Don’t forget to use your nursing cover when pumping or when unexpected visitors drop by.
Summer Handheld Color Monitor
This item is the only item that I have used every day since the birth of my daughter. It offers the one thing that no baby book, forum or other parent can offer…peace of mind. There is nothing like having the assurance of seeing and knowing that your baby is safe. Additionally, this monitor gives caregivers freedom and flexibility. These are things that every parent desires. It allows parents the freedom to take on other domestic tasks, the flexibility to navigate multiple levels of your dwelling without guilt and the freedom to sleep peacefully (albeit only a couple of hours at first), but knowing that your little one is safe. By the way, we still use our baby monitor for my toddler. It’s the best!
What items would you include on your list?