Sponsored by The Breastfeeding Shop
Three kids in, and while I don’t feel like I am an expert, I do learn something new every pregnancy in regards to my MUST HAVE items. So today I am sharing with you what I cannot do without when it comes to surviving the first few months of life.
Rock ‘n Play.
I got one of these when I was expecting Brooklyn, and it has quickly become my No. 1 suggestion when the topic of what you really need comes up. Brooke slept in hers, next to my bed, for the first 6 months of life, and Emily is currently sleeping in hers. It keeps my babies close, but in their own space. For Emily, it has helped with her constant spit-up to be slightly inclined at night. When it isn’t bedtime, it is easy to move around the house and keep the little one in your eyesight while still getting things done. An absolute must.
A good breast pump — and a Haakaa, too
Emily is the third baby I’ve been fortunate enough to nurse, and with each kid, I learn something new about breastfeeding. With Grace it was the essentials: HOW to breastfeed. With Brooklyn, it was how to get and use my insurance-issued breast pump. With Emily, it has been to add in the use of a Haakaa when nursing. When I had Brooke, Rob was still active duty, and Tricare was our insurance provider. Tricare provides you with a pump FREE OF CHARGE through companies like the Breastfeeding Shop. I got the Medela Pump In Style Advanced at no charge. This pump has been a godsend this time around, with Emily already sleeping in eight-hour stretches at night. I have also been able to save 4-5 ounces a week with my Haakaa silicone breast pump (thanks to my cousin, Jess, for introducing me to this gadget). I just suction-cup the Haakaa to the side Emily is not nursing on, and collect my let-down milk. I don’t spend much time away from Emily or my big girls, but with these two pumps, I have been able to create a stash that makes saying “yes” to kid free activities even easier!
You know those hospital-issued green all-rubber pacifiers? Have you ever dropped one of those? Those suckers will bounce, and bounce, and bounce… into every corner, through every pile of dirt, to a land far, far away. Basically, a pacifier clip is a must! Just attach to the pacifier and attach to the baby and voila… no more chasing that thing to kingdom come.
Diaper rash cream
One of those things you don’t really think about until you need it. So I just ALWAYS have it on hand… because when a rash comes on, the last thing you want to be doing is running to the store to buy a new tube. My children, thus far, always experience nasty rashes when they are sick, popping new teeth through, or — in Brooke’s case — drinking a bit too much juice. I’ve tried quite a few creams, but can’t ever go wrong with Destin — extra strength (that’s in the purple container).
A baby book
I am a stickler for recording life (clearly, or I would not be a blogger). When I graduated from high school, I had two scrapbooks displayed at my graduation party. I’ve done my best to keep up with Shutterfly photo books for my girls as I get free codes (new moms must sign up for a Shutterfly account and USE ALL THE FREE CODES), but have made it my ultimate goal to give them completed baby books. This is the one thing I pick out from the get go and try to stay on top of. Those quiet moments when I am at the hospital by myself, with just my newborn… I record the first moments. I use my monthly blog posts to fill in each month after and try my best to keep things as updated as possible. Grace turns 5 next year, and her book will be completed then. I just bought her a school scrapbook that will cover from preschool to her senior year. These are the things I want to leave for my kids… their lives, from my perspective.
That’s it — my top 5 must-haves. The baby world will try and sell you on just about every baby gadget, but the majority are not needed at all. (Wipes warmer, anyone?)
Moms… what are your must have baby items?