So, what does baby really need?
If you walked into a store as a first-time mom hoping it would give some insight on what baby needs only to leave with your head spinning, we are with you. And we’re here to help! Babies really are quite simple in their needs (aside from lots of LOVE, feeding, and sleepless nights). Less really is more with your little one because space (there’s not a lot of it) and money (save where you can).
It’s easy to get caught up in the comparison of social media and stores with checklists longer than you knew existed leaving you feeling like everything is a must-have. Our advice? Toss that checklist. Let us help! Or ask a few trusted moms what their must-haves were and you’re sure to find it wasn’t all that much.
We’re letting you in on what items are absolutely necessary and what we couldn’t have lived without!
Determine the best car seat for your vehicle (LATCH system, does it need to fit next to another car seat?, etc.). You will use this every day carrying baby to and from the car, attaching and detaching it from a stroller so get a good one.
Things to consider when choosing a stroller are handle height, car seat compatibility, and use - do you need a travel stroller and/or a full-size stroller? Travel strollers are good for, well, travel but also fold up very compact and fit well in smaller trunks. They’re also better for things like shopping and restaurants.
Take it from me (the mom who said I would never baby wear) - slings and wraps are equally loved and a personal preference, but there’s nothing sweeter than having baby close. Plus, baby always sleeps better when snuggled up with you. Never say never.
CRIB OR BASSINET (OR A MIX OF BOTH)
Depending on your home, baby may sleep in a bassinet until you choose to transition them to a crib. Sometimes, parents put a crib in their room. Ultimately, this will depend on your sleeping choice, how much space you have, and whether baby will have their own room.
Whether you choose disposable or cloth, you’ll be surprised at how many you go through and how quickly (at least at first) they grow out of them. Buy a few sizes and always have extra on hand.
WHITE NOISE MACHINE
Hands down could not live without one. This has been the key to better sleep for my babies (and I’ve heard this from many other moms). You may even be able to vacuum while baby sleeps.
BOTTLES – BUT NOT A LOT
Whether you breastfeed, bottle feed or both - babies are picky. Before you stock up, figure out what they like and then stock up.
You’ll use one. A lot. This Luxe Baby Blanket is perfect for the car seat, stroller, and into toddler years. Word of advice: get two! There will come a day when it’s in the wash or you misplace it and that backup will save you. Take it from me, get the same color and alternate them (yes, they know).
Life-changing and available at all different price points. Between naptime, bed time, and daylight savings time you’ll thank your lucky stars you have them.
You will want somewhere to set your little one down when you do the other important things (like shower and eat).
Manual or electric? Determine what’s best for you based on whether you’ll be traveling with it daily or if you plan to pump in places like your car or work. Often, you can get one free of charge through insurance so it’s worth checking into.
Some babies take them, others don’t. All I’m saying is, in case your baby doesn’t self-soothe with their thumb, get at least one.
I love this Little G Teething Toy from Little Giraffe. It’s perfect for little hands to hold, dishwasher safe, and soothes sore gums.
Aside from your baby, it will be your most precious cargo. It can make or break a trip out of the house. In addition to diapers, it will hold everything you need like a change of clothes for baby (and maybe yourself), wipes, bottle, pacifier, and diapers (worth a second mention because there’s no such thing as too many).
Babies love to be warm and safe, and swaddling mimics a womb-like environment. I recommend the Stretch Chenille Dreampod from Little Giraffe.
For peace of mind. Some can even track things like baby's heart rate and oxygen levels.