My Favorite Baby Things   2 comments

This time last year I was anxiously counting down the last several weeks before my due date. I was honored at two showers and given many generous gifts to make welcoming my baby girl into our home as easy as possible. This year, I have several friends who are expecting their own little babies in Spring or Summer, and, in case they read my blog, I wanted to provide a kind of review for all things baby.  While I am not an expert on what every parent needs, I must say that our first 9 months with a baby have been pretty easy and, while a lot of this has to do with the fact that we were blessed with a great baby, some of it might have to do with having the right stuff on hand.

Here are the things I couldn’t live without:

  • My #1 baby item was… my Boppy pillow!! For a breastfeeding mother, it is a must-have item. It makes feeding much more comfortable and, even when we switched to bottle-feeding, we used it a lot. I know some people who have used the My Breast Friend pillow and have found it superior— I can’t speak to this personally, but my advice to every new mom is to get some sort of feeding support pillow. YOU WILL USE IT.
  • Swing… Millie was not a fussy newborn, but she did have a fussy time each evening when neither Nate nor I could seem to comfort her. For this 2 hour time period, the swing was a life-saver. We would put her in the swing and all was right with the world. Millie never did like the bouncy seat, but she loved her swing.
  • Babywise… I read a lot of books about different sleep training/ parenting methods. I knew that attachment parenting wasn’t right for me and the concepts in Babywise made a lot of sense . If you’ve heard of the book and think it says to just let your baby cry and cry and cry, you are mistaken. If you think the book suggests that it does not harm a child to allow her to cry herself to sleep in an effort to establish stable sleeping habits, you are correct. I did not follow every word in the book to a “T”, but Nate and I used it as a guide. For example, the book explains the idea that a baby’s day is made up of segments— sleep time, feeding time and play time. During the middle of the night feeding, there is no playtime. I was careful during the middle of the night feeding to feed Millie and put her right back to bed (no extended cuddling or talking or playing) in order to help her differentiate night and day (it doesn’t sound so cruel, does it?). This definitely helped us avoid the months of sleeplessness that other parents endure. Millie started sleeping through the night at 5 weeks old and has slept consistently through the night almost every night since (the week she learned to roll over was tough, but as soon as she figured out how to roll the other way, we were back to nights of sweet slumber). I know that the “crying it out” method can be quite controversial, but I just had to mention this book in my favorite things.
  • Pampers… Truth be told, I wish I was cloth diapering, but I decided that, in light of my work demands, I did not want to add extra loads of laundry to my already too full to-do list. So, we are using disposable diapers. We have tried Pampers, Huggies and Target Brand (which I think fit like Huggies) and I am a Pampers girl all the way. They are less bulky than other brands and Millie does not have leaks when wearing Pampers (a few blow-outs, yes, but no pee leaks). Also, Millie has been wearing Target brand for a few weeks and she has gotten a pretty nasty diaper rash. I’m not 100% sure if these things are related, but Millie rarely got even a mild rash when wearing Pampers.
  • Huggies wipes… They’re the thickest!
  • Musical toys… Millie loves all things that play music. Her mobile still captivates her and her singing tea pot is a new favorite.
  • Camera… This isn’t really a baby item, but trust me, you want a good camera near by at all times when you have a baby. You can’t take too many pictures.

Now, onto the stuff you don’t need! BuyBuyBaby, Babies R Us, and Target don’t want you to read this next section, but too bad.

  • You do not need an expensive crib. The crib we got for Millie was under $70 and it has been great. I can’t believe people spend $300+ on a crib for a baby. Buy a nice mattress, but you do not need to spend hundreds of dollars on a crib! (Disclaimer— do make sure the crib meets all safety guidelines.)
  • You do not need new designer baby clothes. Babies grow fast and they spit up, poop and pee on themselves. Do NOT spend crazy amounts of money on their wardrobes. Get a few meaningful pieces new if you must, then go to Once Upon a Child and get the rest. Trust me.
  • You may not need a baby monitor. We used ours once when I was outside during Millie’s nap. I didn’t really need it then— I kept going inside to check on her. At night, we never used the monitor. Millie slept in a bassinet in our room for the first month so we obviously didn’t need the monitor then. When we put her in her crib, we chose not to turn on the monitor— we knew we’d hear her if she cried and we decided we didn’t need to hear all of the other noises (coos, sighs, grunts, ect) that would just disrupt our sleep. Plus, our house is TINY. We were never more than 15-20 steps from Millie’s crib even when we were on the other side of the house.
  • You do not need a Bumbo seat. We liked ours a lot and it comes in handy when we go to visit Millie’s grandparents’ house (it acts as a portable high chair) but, unless you have a small baby, your infant might out-grow the seat before you get your money’s worth.

Now, obviously this isn’t an extensive list. Other items like a breast pump, lots of bibs, a quality car seat, stroller, and a baby carrier (I liked my BabyBjorn when she was a newborn and now that she’s older I LOVE my Moby wrap) are important too, but, these things were my favorites especially when Millie was a little baby (6 months and younger). One other recommendation?? Choose a name that you love and one that lends itself to nicknames. Millie (aka Millie Lou, Mimi, Milou, Lou, Louie) agrees with me on that one.



Posted February 20, 2012 by Nate and Julie in Millie

2 responses to “My Favorite Baby Things

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  1. Loved this! I think you and I are kindred spirits. I just read this after sorting through used clothes and other items we’ve accumulated. 🙂 We’ll have matching Ikea cribs too!! Love the blog. You guys are so great. 🙂

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