When you get pregnant your family and friends will tell you that you need so many things or if you are lucky enough to have a baby shower you will get so many things for you and your baby.
With my limited knowledge i thought it was best to research these things, so i searched the internet for lists – what i would need for hospital, what i would need to take to hospital for bubs, what furniture i need for the babies room, what i need for bathing bubs, what i need for breastfeeding and lists went on and on and just made me more confused.
THE BABIES ROOM
Mr Wonderful and I moved into our first family home when i was 7 1/2 mths pregnant so we had put off buying baby furniture until then, i don’t recommend this as sometimes items need to be ordered in. We stuck to the basic furniture cot and a change table, the babies room had a massive wardrobe and we already had a set of drawers. A change table was a necessity for me, at 38 i did not want to be bending down all the time to change bubs and even now with DD at 15mths i still use this and consider it money well spent.
After DD was born she went straight into her cot as i did not think a bassinet was essential especially when bubs would grow out of it quite quickly, also i was determined that bubs would be in her own room right from the start as i had heard so many stories of mumma’s struggling to get bubs out of their room.
My minimalistic thinking had left us needing a few things once bubs joined us. I had neglected to think of a nightlight so we did the quick dash to Kmart for that and we also got a lamp so DD did not have to deal with the bright bedroom light shinning on her. The other thing i neglected was where would i be breastfeeding bubs during the night so we went out and got a nice comfy recliner. I chose a recliner rather than a feeding chair so that it would have a purpose after our breastfeeding journey ends.
There is so many bathing aids – baby baths, bath seats, bath nets, wash gloves, head rings to keep water out of their eyes, non slip mats, non slip stickers etc.
After chatting with other mums i decided against getting a baby bath and invested our money in foam mats instead so that i didn’t get sore knees bathing DD in our bathtub. These have worked great, i still use then in the bathroom but will soon be moving them to DD’s outdoor play area.
We were given head rings and wash gloves which i found were not practical. We were also given a bath thermometer which has been a great help for getting both Mr Wonderful and i used to a safe water temperature for DD.
POWDERS, LOTIONS, TOILETRIES ETC
If you are having a baby shower do not buy any of these, you will be gifted plenty. I also suggest going to a baby and toddler expo/ show and getting as many samples as possible. Use all these then decide what works and what you need. I have so many products that i still haven’t used.
The 2 items that have been of no use to us are – baby cotton buds and the booger sucker, i tried both and ended up using a tissue instead for both.
There is a couple of items that have made life a bit easier too – a good thermometer for taking DD’s temperature and a good syringe for oral medications.
Nappies and wipes, again i would suggest getting samples at a baby and toddler expo/show and seeing which you and bubs prefer. You can also go to brand web sites and they often have a section to request samples. I was advised by several people to stock up before bubs arrived but of course i didn’t and honestly it hasn’t really bothered me as between the 2 major supermarket chains they have them on sale about every 2/3 weeks so i rarely pay full price.
I chose to exclusively breastfeed so i didn’t purchase any feeding equipment prior to bubs arrival. After a few weeks i decided that it may be a good idea to express so i purchased a manual breast pump, yes it did the job but it was a slow process that did not produce a lot of milk and sometimes left me sore. I did a bit of research and as a stay at home mumma i could not justify spending the money on an electric pump although all research indicated these are the best, then i discovered the Haakaa and i found this a much easier and cheaper option and it did a better job than the manual breast pump. I also found pouches great for storing milk, food grade zip lock bags will also do the job nicely.
When DD was about 3 mths old (able to hold her head up) i purchased a portable seat similar to a Bumbo, this was a great help as DD could sit on the kitchen bench while i was baking or sit at the table with me when i was eating. It was also great when we took a road trip when DD was 6 mths and just starting solids, we could take it with us and it didn’t take up too much room. It wasn’t until DD was 11 mths old that i finally purchased a high chair as i thought the portable seat was no longer safe for DD with only having a 3 point lap belt.
TOYS & PLAY EQUIPMENT
Again if you are having a baby shower do not buy any toys. We were gifted so many toys, play equipment and mats that i did not need to buy anything and on top of that DD was born 3 weeks before Christmas so we got another load of toys then. I will be honest DD would of been quite happy with only a handful of toys and a play mat. She was too small for her bouncer for a long time and then when she did finally fit we only used it for maybe 1 mth before DD started to lean forward in it and nearly tip it over. We also had a walker that was only used a handful of times because after some research and advice from my Chiropractor i discovered they are very bad for the spine and core muscles. Sensory toys and the play mat were definitely the toys that both DD and I found most useful.
CLOTHES & LINEN
Our baby shower again supplied us with everything we needed for DD’s first few months. We had so many blankets/ wraps of all varieties but because we live in a warmer climate most weren’t used. I was advised by so many people to have lots of clothes and blankets because babies spit up a lot and make a mess of everything but babies grow so quickly that DD out grew a lot of clothes before they even made it onto her so i suggest keeping it to a minimum for the smaller sizes anyway.
The items we did find extremely helpful were mittens to stop her scratching herself, Muslin wraps and sleeping bags/ grow bags.
An added item that i would suggest every mumma go out and get is cloth nappies but not to use as nappies, they have so many purposes – mopping up spills or messes, burping cloths, rolling up and putting into a U shape to stop bubba’s head from lolling to the side, i often placed them under DD when she was sleeping to save washing a whole set of bed linen and they are nice and soft for her, tuck them in under a bib for better coverage, have in the car to use as a change mat, for drying shopping trolleys or i put one under DD when she is in seat of shopping trolley to stop her legs rubbing on trolley and to protect her if trolley is hot from being out in the sun. There are just so many uses and they can be re purposed around the house not for just baby related times.
Feel free to leave comments of items you found useful or useless.