Newborns are super cute, but let’s face it – they’re super challenging! At least in my experience. I don’t know – maybe you have magical unicorn newborns. I most certainly do not, which means I need lots of props and items to survive this stage.
Here are some of my favorites. Aside from coffee, of course. Coffee is 10,000% essential to surviving this stage. Well, all stages in parenting really. I’m basically expecting to need coffee for the rest of my life from here on out.
These are a must have for me! For whatever reason, I experience a ton of pain while nursing a newborn. I’m not sure what the exact problem is, but I had it with my first and I’ve had it with my second too. These shields greatly reduce the pain I feel and allowed my nipples to heal quickly.
I love that this one came with two and a carrying case! I linked an Amazon one for ease of purchase if you want, but you can also get them at Target.
*I recommend using these under the supervision of a lactation consultant. I’ve heard stories of women whose supply drops due to use of a nipple shield.
A white noise machine serves two purposes.
- 1) Babies love white noise while sleeping. After living in your body for 9 months and becoming accustomed to constantly hearing noise, they generally don’t like silence.
- 2) I find white noise to be helpful for me to tune out any grunting my baby might do. Babies can sometimes be noisy sleepers. White noise helps me to bypass those noises that don’t require my attention.
At the risk of sounding dramatic, I couldn’t live without my boppy pillow! This saves my back so much strain while nursing.
Lots of women also love the My Brest Friend pillow. I love that this one has a pocket!
I can’t recommend some sort of sleep/swaddle sack enough. It’s not recommended for babies to sleep with a blanket, so a sleep sack helps to keep them warm without the risk of a blanket.
And some babies just loooooveee to be swaddled nice and tight, so a swaddle sack makes swaddling so much easier!
There’s literally so many different ones to choose from too! We have the Woombie convertible (pictured above). I like it because it’s nice and light weight, so he can still use it during the summer when our house is warmer.
To swing or not to swing is entirely up to you, but we couldn’t live without one! We actually have two! We have the Graco Dream Glider and the Graco Simple Sway. My husband even said the Dream Glider has been our most helpful item so far.
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We’ve had the Simple Sway since we had our first three years ago. We purchased the Dream Glider from a second-hand consignment shop for $60 just before having our second. Since swings are more expensive, I highly recommend looking at a local second hand shop for one.
Please remember that swings are technically not considered safe for sleep.
Haakaa Breast Pump
I absolutely love my Haakaa! This is great for removing milk from my breast when I can’t be stuck on my pump that’s plugged into the wall.
Keep in mind this is a pump, not a milk catcher. It does stimulate a let down on its own, not simply catch milk that leaks during a let down. If you’re looking for a milk catcher, these Milkies are great!
A baby carrier is a non-negotiable for me, especially because this is my second kid. I need to be able to wrangle my toddler in public without worrying about a carrier car seat for my baby. I really like this one by Infantino. It’s pretty affordable, can be worn on the front or back, holds up to 40 lbs, and has held up well!
For around the house, especially with those fresh, squishy newborns, I prefer a ring sling.
There’s lots of options out there for baby carriers. Be sure to head to a local retailer, such as Target, to try out the carriers before you buy, as some can be fairly expensive.
And that wraps up my list! I use all of these items on a daily basis and absolutely couldn’t survive without them!
What baby items/gear did you find most useful?