Bringing Home Baby: Essentials During The First 3 Months2:42 PM
Those first few weeks after bringing home baby are bananas. Your body is bruised, battered, and hormonal. You have a precious little baby that is, ahem, rather demanding. Here are a few essentials that got me through those first 3 months with my sanity in tact!
Swaddle blankets // I truly believe you can't have enough of these. Get the big muslin ones, and marvel at their many uses. Sleep swaddle, burp cloth, sun shield, nursing cover...you name it. Also, at 2 months old, Lilli has become quite the escape artist and this double swaddle technique works like a charm...and makes me hungry for a burrito.
Swaddle wrap // These are amazing for keeping little houdinis under wraps and for those middle of the night changes since no one wants to be fumbling with giant blankets at 3:30am. For the first 8 weeks, we swaddled her up in the zip style, this crazy shoulder zip style, and velcro styles. Zips are way better since they go up from the bottom for easy diaper changes, and the velcro noise wakes the baby when you take it off during changes and it gets super tangly in the dryer. The little Miss is now too big for those, so we've stocked up on these winged sleepsacks and this hilarious yet effective sleepsuit.
Snap onesies // Again, these are so much easier than the zip ones for the night changes since you can keep the swaddle on and just rip the bottom apart a la Magic Mike. The zips are great for daytime, but snaps are where its at once the lights go out. My faves are from Rosie Pope.
Bose soundsystem + ipod // All the better to blast white noise and lullabies for a good night's sleep. I popped an old iPhone loaded with music and white noise apps into the dock, and let the zzzz's roll.
Baby apps // I mentioned these in this post, but you'll want to go ahead and get the Total Baby Pro and the Sound Sleeper apps. Your foggy memory will thank you.
Dock-a-tot // The Dock-a-tot is awesome. Seriously. I didn't realize just how amazing it was until Lilli spit up all over the cover one morning during her nap when she was about 2 weeks old. The covers have to be hang dried, and it was still very damp when her bed time rolled around so we had to go without for the night. WORST night ever. She would not settle and woke up screaming each time I tried to set her down. Total nightmare. That morning, I ordered a spare cover because I will never repeat that mistake.
Bouncy chair // All hail the bouncy baby chair. Great for calming fussy babies while getting things done around the house or nipping into the shower. We have the Rockaroo, which I'm actually kinda ambivalent about since she won't nap in it. As she's getting bigger, I'm finding she hangs out in it for a bit and will stare and swat at the mobile so I'm glad we have it. Is the cost justified though? I'm not convinced. This rock n' play is much less cash and probably gets the job done just as well. Whatever style you go with, make sure you have some sort of jiggly bouncy chair thingamajig.
Baby carrier // This is a total must, as it lets you cuddle your babe with some skin-on-skin while having your hands free to do other things...like obsessively Google 'is it normal when my newborn...." type questions. Perhaps I went a little overboard by getting 3 different types or carriers, but I use them all in different ways. The Lillebaby carrier I like for longer walks and it's the carrier John uses. It's bulky though, so I don't carry it when on-the- go. For that, the Baby K'Tan and Beechtree Baby wrap are perfect. They fold up in my diaper bag super easily, and I like how they are super soft, snuggly, and can be popped in the washing machine and dryer. The K'Tan is pretty much just for me, since it is sized like a t-shirt (I went a size down from their recommendation and got the small, so glad I did since it's a much more snug and secure fit when Lilli is in it). The wrap option is free-sized (it can fit anyone in the family plus a growing babe) and it is by far the least expensive option. Learning to tie it takes a couple tries, but then it's pretty simple. So...there you go.
Multipurpose cover // Make your diaper bag a little lighter by getting one of these carseat covers that double as a nursing cover and shopping cart cover. When Lilli gets fussy from being overstimulated when we're out running errands, I just pop this on and bounce her for a bit. Before 5 minutes is over, baby girl is totally zonked out. I purchased my striped one from Copper Pearl, and Covered Goods also has some super cute options. You'll obviously need a carseat as well!
Diaper bag // Roomy, stylish and ideally one with backpack-style straps are where it's at. I am beyond obsessed with my convertible day bag from Nena & Co, and get so many compliments on it. Functional and pretty. Yes, please!
Laundry detergent // Stock up because you will go through it quickly. I'm still amazed at how much laundry such a tiny little person can create in a day. I'm talking like 3 outfit changes a day for both of us thanks to blow out diapers, projectile spit up, and major droolfests. Insane. And this stuff is the best for getting stains of a certain kind out of clothes.
Giant water bottle // You may have a thirst that seemingly can't be quenched, so keeping a giant cup of water nearby when your nursing (which is almost constantly in the early weeks) is a very good idea. You can buy something insulated if you want to keep your bevvie cold, or you can just be a kleptomaniac like I was and take the giant pitcher cup that you used in the hospital. I developed a strange attachment to that hideous pink cup with the styrofoam coozy...it was like my "prize"(after Lilli of course!) for giving birth.
Nipple cream // I use Lanolin (but there are also some really nice organic options available as well), and keep a couple tubes around the house since I nurse in a few different spots. Bonus: slather this stuff on your flaky parched post-partum lips to help with the dryness..
Nursing bras // Feeling like a cow ain't sexy. Having a pretty nursing bra that doesn't look like granny gear helps big time. Go and get yourself this bra, 2 of these bras, and 3 of these tummy control tanks. Ha...now you know what's covering my milkmakers on the regular. If you can't tell, I seriously love Rosie Pope stuff. It's the best.
Leggings // High rise compression leggings were (and still are) a postpartum mama's best friend. I don't bother with the overpriced options from maternity lines. This pair from Target is affordable and do the trick perfectly.
Anything else I'm missing, mamas? Spill your must haves in the comments if so!
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