Newborn Essentials: Vol. 2

newbornessesntialsvol2I’m back with the second part of my newborn essentials. The items from your registry that you need to take care of your newborn for the first four weeks. Feeding your newborn and changing diapers seem to take up most of your time so for tips & essential items needed for those moments be sure to read the previous post (HERE).

Bath Time:
Once that baby’s umbilical cord falls off (takes 7 up to 21 days) you are free to finally give them a bath in a tub. Until that happens you can give them a sponge bath on a towel and make sure you just keep that belly dry!First time mom? Great list on essential items from your registry to care for your newborn for the first 4 weeks. A pin worth saving!
Bath Tub. Because your baby will drown if you place them in a regular bathtub you need an infant safe bathtub. I suggest an infant tub that comes with a sling (or a built in one) that holds them safely away from water and with their heads elevated. There are so many kinds on the market but we have the Summer Infant Soothing Spa & Shower that we used with Lily and now with Chloe. The tub allows me to give Chloe a bath on the kitchen counter or in my bathroom. It comes with a sling that is unattached that I would actually bring with me to hotels when I traveled with Mike and Lily. The best part is the motorized shower that sprinkles enough water to wash the soap off my babies but also light enough for their sensitive skin. The shower brings a calming sensation that both of my girls love! Plus it detaches so you can still use the shower in the regular bath tub when they get older.

Body Wash & Lotion. Until both of my babies lost their umbilical stumps I used Mustela facial cleansing wipes to clean their faces and bodies. The alcohol free wipes are perfect for cleaning & soothing their sensitive skin in between sponge baths. The smell is heavenly and they are perfect to quickly clean their face and neck when they spit up (such a strong horrible smell!). I still keep the wipes in my diaper bag in case Chloe spits up in public and needs to be cleaned up. In order to give the baby a bath you obviously need soap, this is a no brainer. There are so many kinds of baby shampoos and this is all up to you. With my sensitive skin I use Aveeno Baby Wash & Shampoo (their calming lavender option is great too!) and I’m a big fan of BabyGanics fragrance free shampoo (Target always has great sales on them). For lotion I recently switched from Aveeno to BabyGanics’s lotion simply because I found a better deal at Target one day!

Bath Time Accessories. Of course you need a towel to keep you baby dry and a washcloth to help you clean them during the bath. You can always use your own to save money, but I’m a sucker for Pottery Barn Kid’s Critter Wraps. The towel’s hood looks like an animal with eyes and ears like a pig, frog or bunny (plus you can personalize it with their name too!). Other items needed are Q-tips to dry the ears, I suggest you get the Q-tips made especially for babies & kids that prevent the tip going too deep inside their ear (try Johnson & Johnson Safety Swabs). Most babies don’t have too much hair, but both my kids were born with a full head of precious locks. Due to their sensitive skin and soft spot you need an infant hairbrush. Get The First Years American Red Cross Deluxe Healthcare & Grooming kit where you can get a great brush along with a comb, nail clipper, scissors, nasal bulb and other great items. FYI the scissors that come with this are my favorite when it comes to trimming your baby’s nails. The other accessory needed is a baby thermometer in case your little one gets a fever. I love the Advanced Solutions Easy Read 4-in-1 thermometer from Safety 1st. This one only takes 5 seconds to record readings when taking it by oral or rectal. Tip: Since we take temps via the rectum I place a big “R” in black sharpie on the outside container of this thermometer to remind mike & me that it is the “butt thermometer”. For some reason I have three thermometers and the last one I want in my mouth is the one I stick up the kids bum even if I clean it after each use!

First time mom? Great list on essential items from your registry to care for your newborn for the first 4 weeks. A pin worth saving!Baby Gear:
Holding and snuggling with my newborn babies are some of the most special moments that I will hold on to. Their tiny feet and legs pulled into their bodies while a tiny fist lays against their face as they sleep like a log on my chest…{insert ahhhhhhh}. But you need to go the restroom, brush your teeth, take a shower and still do everyday tasks and holding that newborn makes those tasks difficult or impossible. Not only do some of the following items make it easier to brush your teeth, a few are great for stimulating your wee one!

Swing. Oh my swing is my biggest lifesaver as a mom. Both my girls (like most babies) need movement to fall asleep. A swing will help give you a break and rock your baby to sleep for you! Especially if you have a toddler and need to make their breakfast or lunch, just place your baby in the swing while you get some stuff done. True story: both of my girls take THE best naps while in the swing so I leave them in it instead of placing them in the bassinet or crib. There are all kinds of swings on the market so get whatever one works in your price range. Tip: Get a swing that plugs into the wall and doesn’t depend solely on batteries. The batteries will burn out so quickly with all the use, so save the $$$ and just get one that plugs in. We have the Fisher-Price My little Snugabunny cradle swing and love it!

Bounce Chair. The bounce chair also allows me to get stuff done around the house. The chair is easier to take from room to room where the swing is too much of a hassle move around your house. I bring the bouncer in my bathroom so I can take a quick shower. We place the chair next to the table when Chloe is awake so we can quickly eat a meal while simultaneously make funny faces and cooing sounds to pacify her. We love our Fisher-Price My Little lamb Bouncer.

Play Mirror. You can use a floor mat like Infantino’s activity gym to stimulate your new baby, but it’s not an essential item for the first 4 weeks. You can get through the first four weeks without one along with a play mirror, BUT our play mirror has saved me on numerous times. I will place the Sassy Crib and Floor Mirror next to Chloe while I change her diaper if she is crying to help entertain her. I also place it in her crib to entertain her while I’m putting laundry away.

Bassinet.  If you read my post about the essential items for nighttime feedings you will understand why having a bassinet next to your bed at night is so important for the first few weeks. Fact: I’m that mom that kept her baby sleeping next to her for 5 months before I made the transition to the crib, so this is an item I got my money’s worth! Tip: If you have the room you can always use a pack-in-play instead of a bassinet. We have The First Years Carry Me Near sleep system, where the top bassinet can detach and you can carry the top anywhere in your home to stow your sleeping babe.

Swaddle with Velcro. Again read the post about essential items for nighttime feedings for my reasons needing swaddles and ones with Velcro! I also list my top three favorite swaddles.

Binky & Binky Clip. Oh binkies can help make your baby stop crying and help soothe them to sleep. Do you need another reason why they are essential? Check out the nighttime feedings post to learn more along with why you need a binky clip too!

Blankets. Swaddling your baby helps soothe them and keep them sleeping. A favorite blanket moms all love are the muslin blankets from Aden + Anais.  The light material helps keep a baby from overheating and you can use them to swaddle them, cover your self when nursing, cover the car seat from the sun while out or as a floor mat!

First time mom? Great list on essential items from your registry to care for your newborn for the first 4 weeks. A pin worth saving!Noise Soothers.  A lot of babies need some kind of noise to lull them to sleep or calm them down when they’re crying. I didn’t need my sound machine until the second week. We have The First Years Sounds for Silence sound machine. There are 6 different kinds of white noises, 6 Mozart songs and a volume control to make it really loud or super soft. Another favorite soother is the Cloud b Sleep Sheep. Get the smaller ‘on the go’ size that you can attach to your baby’s car seat to help soothe them in public. There are great apps for your smart phones that have all kinds of white noises and check out my nighttime essential post for a few great ones to download!

Clothes. Unless you are a nudist you need clothes for your baby! Depending on their birth weight most babies will grow out of the newborn size pretty quickly, but it is the size you will use the most during the first four weeks. Check out Babycenter’s checklist for a good idea on what clothes are needed for newborns! I found the zip up body suits were helpful during the newborn stage since I was changing so many diapers! Check the post on nighttime essentials on why gowns are crucial for newborns and your sanity!

Car Seat and Stroller. You can’t even leave the hospital without a car seat so this is obviously an essential item for a newborn! Unless you plan on carrying your baby and the car seat everywhere you will want a stroller too! There are so many different kinds of car seats and strollers out on the market so this is up to what functions you want and what price range you are comfortable with. Tip: Make sure that your car seat is compatible with your stroller if you are getting different brands.

Baby Carrier. I didn’t use a baby carrier with my first baby during the first 4 weeks. I stayed inside mostly to recover and when I left the house for doctor’s appointments I used the car seat and stroller to carry her around. With Chloe I used my baby carrier the second week when Lily was crying to go on a walk around the neighborhood. I love our ERGObaby carrier. Note to use this carrier with a newborn you will need to get the infant insert to support your newborn baby within the carrier.  I know a lot of moms love carriers like the Moby Wrap, but I found the thing to be too difficult to figure out. Plus with a toddler running around I don’t have the time needed to wrap myself with the thing. To each their own! ERGO has recently released their ‘Four Position 360‘ carrier that allows babies to hang their legs down more similar to the BabyBjorn so they can face forward. I have gottem a lot of use out of my ERGO with the infant insert so far, but now that Chloe is older and wants to face out I went out and purchased the BabyBjorn in shear desperation. I wish ERGO had released the 360 when Lily was born because it has the best of both carriers in one!

Diaper Bag. You will not be able to place all the items needed for your baby in your clutch. Diaper bag come in all kinds of sizes, fabrics, colors and price ranges so it is all up to you on what you want! Tip: try filling your diaper bag up with items when you get home and walk around your house. I returns my first diaper bag because I thought the handle was cutting into my arm once I finally filled it. Some important items to have in your diaper bag at all times: diapers, wipes, burp cloths, extra baby outfit, disposable boobs pads & small disposable diaper trash bags.

Any item you thing is an essential item for the first 4 weeks?? Be sure to read the first volume HERE and the items needed for the crazy nighttime feedings HERE!

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