It’s true what they say: newborns don’t really need that much crap. Just somewhere to sleep, something to wear, and a few things to help keep them clean. Our tiny newborn days will be over before we know it, but here are the top things that we’ve loved to use (and a few comments about what we haven’t used but thought we would) for the first few weeks of parenthood.
- Summer Infant By Your Side Co-Sleeper
This is a collapsible co-sleeper that goes in your bed, so that Miles could sleep between us in bed for the first few weeks. We started transitioning him into his crib at about 3 weeks old (which is also in our room, since we live in a 1-br apartment), but the first two weeks it was SO nice to have him right there within arm’s reach. We also used it as a portable crib when spending the night at my dad’s house over Thanksgiving. Disclaimer: You probably need a king size bed for this to work if you want both mom and dad to sleep with the baby.
- Carter’s plain white onesies with foldover mitts
This is pretty much all Miles wore for the first 2 or 3 weeks of his life. They’re cheap, easy to change a diaper in, and the foldover mitts kept him from scratching up his face too badly. We liked the Carter’s brand because they were a little bit longer than the Gerbers, but that was really only an issue because Miles is already a pretty tall baby.
- HALO Sleep Sack Swaddles
We really have loved the HALO brand because it’s fleecy and warm, but any velcro swaddle (lovingly referred to by my older brother as “cheater swaddles”) would work. Miles wears them around during the day too just because they’re easy and he can’t kick them off the way he kicks blankets off (which he does instantly).
The first time I saw one of these pacifiers with the little stuffed animals attached, I thought it was cute but didn’t really get the purpose. But they are genius. The little stuffed animal helps hold the pacifier in place so it doesn’t roll out of your baby’s mouth the second he stops sucking on it, which means you’ll only have to physically hold the pacifier in his mouth half the time instead of all the time.
- Boudreaux Diaper Cream
Just quality stuff.
- Tubby Todd Bubble Bath and Lotion
Made a big difference with Miles’ baby acne, and the lavender/rosemary scent is amazing. It also keeps his skin from getting too dry in the driest climate ever, aka Colorado in the winter. And after a minute or so of a good head and face rub with the lotion, Miles calms way down and if you rub his eyebrows the right way, you might even get him to fall asleep. Plus the ingredients are hypoallergenic, gluten, paraben, and sulfate free, and it’s scented with essential oils, so he isn’t absorbing any weird crap through his skin.
- Solly Baby Wrap
OBSESSED with this thing. I was skeptical that it would be worth the price tag, but yes, it’s really worth the money to pay for a long swath of stretchy fabric. We wear Miles in the Solly wrap on our walk almost every day, and even put him in there to get things done around the house and/or for a little extra skin-to-skin contact. It’s really soft, easy to put on, and comes in beautiful colors instead of just looking like another baby accessory.
- White Noise Machine
We use a little bluetooth speaker and a white noise app on one of our phones, but a white noise machine would work just as well. We even brought it to the hospital, which made a huge difference with all the nurses constantly moving up and down the hall and babies crying and monitors beeping, etc etc., and now we put it by Miles’ crib every night. Definitely a must-have.
- Chux Pads
Not exactly glamorous, but I put one under me when I slept for the first few nights after coming home from the hospital, and we use them as portable changing pads to change Miles’ diaper all around the house or in other people’s houses. So frickin useful.
Add the carseat, diapers and wipes (we’ve been using Honest diapers because we had a few gift cards, but we’ve also used Huggies which I’ve liked just as much), and a few fleecy footed onesies into the mix (it is winter, after all), and that’s about all we’ve really needed these first few weeks. We haven’t used our stroller or swing yet, and we have an infant tub but it would be just as easy to put a few inches of water in our bathtub and get in there with him. I have a Medela breast pump that I try to use at least once a day, but I kind of hate pumping so I’ve been slacking a little bit on that front. I also like the Lansinoh nursing pads and lanolin. Honestly, that’s about it. Turns out you really don’t need that much stuff for a newborn, after all.