Newborn Must Haves

October 10, 2012

These are my favorite posts to read by other bloggers. Whenever I read posts like this, I found myself going straight to Amazon to buy what they recommend : )

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These are all items I would recommend having at home before you give birth. So much of the other stuff you can wait and see what you need. So without further ado, there are the things I couldn’t imagine the first month without:

Baby Connect app – I’ve mentioned this app before, but it’s been invaluable to track feedings, sleep and more. I’m letting Maze tell me when he’s hungry, but it’s great to still have a timer going from the last time he ate and which side it was on. Sure, you could use pen and paper, but then you wouldn’t have all the data available in the nice charts and things! I haven’t been 100% consistent with it (naps are hard to track if they’re very short) but it’s still a good estimate. And although it doesn’t really mean I get more sleep, I like waking up and seeing “You’ve been sleeping for 3 hours and 10 minutes” and knowing that was a good long stretch. I no longer track diapers (because it’s clear we are making lots of them over here!) but now I have added pumping, so I imagine we will evolve with the app as he gets older and we might want to track activities, solid foods, potty use and more. The app was totally worth the $4.99 I paid for it.

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Wrap/carrier – Whether it’s the Boba, Ergo, Moby or a homemade sling, I could not imagine these past few weeks without some kind of baby wearing device. We have gotten lots of use out of both the wrap and the carrier, but if I had to just get one, I’d get the carrier. The Boba has the ability to convert for newborn side, and I know the Ergo has newborn inserts (and I have friends that just propped their babies up with a swaddle blanket). This first month, baby wearing was one if the only things I could count on: he would almost always be calm when I wore him. Naps only happened against me, and having my hands free was invaluable.

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Nursing cover – I would never have ventured into public with a newborn without some kind of breastfeeding privacy. Using the cover isn’t ideal, but it is liberating to think that when you’re out, if the baby cries you just have to feed them. Having a cover made me comfortable feeding him in restaurants, on park benches and when I had visitors in my home. You could just use a swaddle blanket, but getting Mazen latched under one was pretty hard without being able to see him. I received a cover from Bebe Au Lait to review and love it.

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My Brest Friend

It really is!! Sure, you could just use a few standard pillows for nursing, but the reason My Brest Friend is great is because it’s firm, straps around you and has little pillows to support the baby’s head. The Boppy is nice, but sometimes I end up having to get in a weird position to get it high enough. Since you should always bring the baby to your breast and not your breast to the baby, it’s important to have them parallel to your breast, and My Brest Friend does this better than the Boppy. I like having two nursing pillows, though, because I use one downstairs and one upstairs.

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Baby Seats

We have a number of baby seats scattered around the house that are great for plopping the baby in when you need to run to the bathroom and wash your hands or take a shower. Some we bought; some were given to us. We have a swing, a Snugabunny bouncer, the iFeel Rocker and the Boppy Lounger. All have their perks and uses, but really, just having ANY seat is great. So get whichever you like! The important part is knowing you have a safe place for your baby to rest while you slip away for a moment.

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Disposable Breast Pads and a Milkie

If I hadn’t had disposable breast pads on hand when I came home from the hospital, I literally would have put a menstrual pad in my bra because I needed something to catch the milk! The cotton ones were just not that absorbent (or rather, I had more let down than they could hold) and I learned this the hard way – with a soaked shirt! I have been SHOCKED at how well the disposable pads absorb – ounces upon ounces. They are quite annoying to have to wear, but they do their job well. I like the Lansinoh brand the best!

I didn’t learn about Milkies until about 4 weeks in, but this let-down catcher is QUITE amazing! It’s made of BPA-free plastic and fits in your bra while you nurse. It’s quite large, so I don’t think you could actually wear it around (and if you bent over you might spill it all out!) but I just slip it in before I start each feeing. I have discovered that I let down about 0.5-1 ounce of milk on the non-nursing breast at each feeding. That means I’m collecting 4-6 ounces a day effortlessly! The one thing I haven’t figured out yet is if this is mostly fore milk and shouldn’t exclusively be used for a bottle but rather mixed with pumped milk that might include hind milk. I’m going to ask some lactation experts about this! (Please weigh in if you are one).

Nursing Bras

On the topic of nursing, nursing bras are a must. I didn’t realize how much breastfeeding would rule the newborn stage! But you really have to be able to nurse comfortably and quickly all.the.time. I bought a couple of sleep bras (which are a must for the nursing pads) from Motherhood Maternity that I sleep in every night and this post includes the real bras that I like so far. A few nursing tanks are great too so you can layer and pulling up your shirt to nurse doesn’t reveal your whole stomach.

Swaddlers

Sure, you can just use a blanket to swaddle your baby, but the problem lies at 3 in the morning when you’re exhausted and don’t have the energy to put into a tight swaddle. The velcro ones are so great for this. We have 3 kinds of swaddlers: the Miracle Blanket, Swaddleme’s, and the Halo Sleep Sack.

The Miracle Blanket works by far the best. Mazen has yet to break out of it. The downsides are that it is expensive ($31 for one) and also a bit difficult to do when sleepy, but not too hard. It’s worth it for the good wrap. The Swaddlemes are the quickest and easiest to put on and are lightweight for summer, but they are also the easiest for him to get out of! The Sleep Sacks are medium putting-on level and medium getting-out-of level. I would get one or two of each because they all sort of serve different purposes.

A Swaddleme

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Water Bottle

I’m sure almost all of you have a water bottle already, but since you will be spending as much time with it as you do your baby, make sure it’s a good one. I think there must be something about latching on that makes the brain say “THIRSTY” because the thirst I feel right when he latches on is so intense! I bought this Camelbak Eddy because it’s 1L, sipable through a straw and doesn’t spill if you knock it over. Love it! I actually just bought a second one so I can have an upstairs and a downstairs water bottle.

 

Other Items That Are Not Total Must Haves But We Love

Video monitor (They are expensive and I had said it was silly of me to “need” to see him and hear him but I totally did! I bought this Motorola one the first week we were home which I love because the camera can pan and zoom)

Pacifier Soothies and a clip (we introduced them at 3 weeks – so helpful, especially for car rides!)

Motherlove Nipple Cream and Soothies – just in case you need them

The White Noise Lite app – for calming. Use on airplane mode!

Chicco Car Seat Caddy Stroller for your car

Oxo Wipes Dispenser (opens with one hand and looks great on our changing table!)

These vitamin D drops so when your doctor gives you the gross cough syrup kind you don’t have to make your baby taste it while you wait for a tasteless, natural kind to come in the mail!

aden & anais blankets (for the 1,000 other things you can do with them other than swaddle like keep the baby warm or block the sun in the stroller – we get so many compliments on our bee + owl ones!)

Happy Baby!!

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There are Amazon Affiliate links in this post – thanks for supporting BERF!

{ 106 comments… read them below or add one }

1 natalie @ will jog for food October 10, 2012 at 2:59 pm

Great advice! I’m writing all this down..starting my registry soon :)

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2 Averie @ Averie Cooks October 10, 2012 at 3:05 pm

It all comes down to nursing, doesn’t it, in the early days :) A good nursing bra and my Brest Friend were essential items in my world! And that last pic of him…too adorable!

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3 Ashley @ My Food N Fitness Diaries October 10, 2012 at 3:35 pm

This is SO useful! Great post! Thanks!

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4 Tamara October 10, 2012 at 4:07 pm

Nursing essentials are still on my to get list. Ahh! So much to get and so little time… like mere days. We are getting a cover today though. I suspect we’ll be running around like headless chickens this weekend if I’m NOT in the hospital!

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5 Coco October 10, 2012 at 4:37 pm

Great list! I have most of the items.

I have the same bouncer but haven’t started using it yet. Do you think it’s safe for a two weeks old baby to sit there? When did you started using it for Maze?

Oh nursing cloths . I need to get some. Which are Your favorite tanks/tops?

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6 KERF October 10, 2012 at 5:23 pm

The Bravado ones are great! But expensive

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7 Sarah October 10, 2012 at 10:04 pm

Target has some good nursing tanks and bras. Some of them are their own brand (Gilligan & O’Malley or something like that) and some of the newer ones are made for Target by Bravado. They’re not quite as heavy duty as the regular Bravado ones, but they’re a lot more affordable, so depending on how much support you need, they’re worth checking out.

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8 Ali October 10, 2012 at 4:46 pm

Love this post!
I also have a newborn and would highly recommend a wipes warmer. As the weather gets colder, I use this at night when changing her diaper before getting her back to sleep after nursing. It’s nice looking (similar to the Oxo)

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9 aimee levance October 10, 2012 at 5:30 pm

i am so jealous that he actually takes the pacifier! my bf daughter who is 4weeks cant figure out how to keep it in her mouth, if i want her to use it i have to literally hold it there..not very convienient!

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10 KERF October 10, 2012 at 6:14 pm

I wiggle my finger around in there until he bites it and that seems to let him know to suck. Weird, but it works a lot of the time.

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11 Susan October 11, 2012 at 1:17 pm

I’ve found that the ones with a little bulb on the end stay in the mouth better. They don’t slip out as easily. Something like this … http://www.amazon.com/The-UMMY-BPA-free-Natural-Pacifier/dp/B0014D47YC/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top
You can find cheaper ones by Gerber, Nuby, etc.

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12 Marion October 10, 2012 at 5:38 pm

I’ll weigh in on the dripped milk you catch with the Milkies – I’m a lactation consultant (and registered dietitian!). You’re right, it’s low fat foremilk and it’s not advisable to give as a primary source of nutrition for the day. Here and there it probably doesn’t matter for a healthy baby. The lower fat and higher lactose might cause a little GI upset, though. I would probably make a habit of just mixing it with other “regular” expressed milk to avoid having to keep up with what’s what. Not that it isn’t obvious just looking at it, especially once refrigerated.

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13 KERF October 10, 2012 at 6:13 pm

Thanks for your feedback !

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14 Melissa October 13, 2012 at 11:11 am

Awesome information. I am working towards becoming an LC and that’s very useful to know for Kath and me :D

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15 Alicia October 10, 2012 at 5:58 pm

I still let down on both sides when I nurse and we’re a year in :\ so I just put my arm or hand over the opposite nipple and it keeps it in.

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16 Brittnie (A Joy Renewed) October 10, 2012 at 6:05 pm

I love these “must have for newborns” posts. I should write one myself. It is funny how each experience is so different and how some items overlap and others do not at all. I also use the disposable breast pads and LOVE them. Not the most earth friendly but it’s one thing I’m willing to compromise on.

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17 Paula Clark October 10, 2012 at 6:19 pm

Please add socks to your list. I think babies feet really need to be covered at all times. Their little feet get cold so easy and that can make them fussy. When their little legs get that blotchy look, it’s time for more clothes. If you are wearing anything on your feet, they should be for sure. I put socks on mine all the time even in the summer.

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18 Claire October 10, 2012 at 8:56 pm

So true! The rule of thumb is one layer EXTRA on your baby than what you are wearing – I always feel bad when I see pictures of babies with that blotchy look, they must be so cold, poor little guys! :(

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19 Lee October 11, 2012 at 12:27 pm

Actually, my midwife told me it was one extra layer for the first month (and a hat!), and then after that to dress them as we would dress (and I live in Canada!). Cool hand and feet are common and nothing to be concerned about. But if you want to warm them up, use socks and/or mitts (or socks as mitts!).

In fact, it’s better for baby to be a little cool than overheated (well … better that they’re at the optimal temp!) as overheating is a risk factor in SIDS. And that’s overheating anywhere — in the car seat, against our bodies in a carrier, in the stroller, etc. Interestingly enough, the optimal temp for baby’s room is in the neighbourhood of 20C/65F!

A good way to check is to touch the back of their neck. If it’s nice and warm, then don’t worry about cool hands and feet. If it’s damp/sweaty, take off some layers. And, of course, if it’s a little cool to touch, add a layer.

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20 Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles October 10, 2012 at 7:11 pm

Great list, Kath! ….. I am *super* appreciative of the Vitamin D link you put up here! I had no idea about these, they just went into the shopping cart on Amazon! We all appreciate the work you take in these posts- great job!!!!!
…..Living where the temperature changes like crazy, I just learned the true reason for slippers; middle of the night feedings! They are a MUST for me now! :)

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21 KERF October 10, 2012 at 7:22 pm

I am having a hard time keeping my shoulders warm during night feedings! They need some kind of pjs with little flaps that come down for the breasts only : )

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22 Claire October 10, 2012 at 8:58 pm

Since I had a winter baby, I actually took an old long sleeved t-shirt and cut two slits at the chest so I could stay warm while nursing all night. :)

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23 KERF October 10, 2012 at 9:07 pm

Nice! I’m going to have to do this :)

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24 Sarah October 10, 2012 at 10:08 pm

I bought a new, very soft hoodie sweatshirt (you know how new sweats are so soft in the inside when they haven’t been washed too much yet?) specifically to wear when I got out of bed to nurse at night. Something about being tired made me get cold so easily, and this helped a lot.

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25 jen October 12, 2012 at 9:11 am

Yes to the sweatshirt! When I saw nursing in the winter I bought a couple of zip front hoodies to try to keep warm while nursing. Loved them!

Does anybody know where the recommendation to keep baby’s room at 65F comes from? My LO was always cold and we finally got her a space heater and kept it on 70F… she was still a little cool, but at least warm enough so that she could get comfortable and sleep.

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26 Leanne October 12, 2012 at 10:00 pm

I don’t know exactly what the reasoning is but the room temperature has something to do with preventing SIDS I believe… on another note, I don’t know if it was just me but the Boppy worked much better for me. I am not thin and My Breast Friend (I bought both) didn’t fit my body very well so I wound up not using it at all. For night feeding I just wore a t-shirt and pulled it up to nurse… the nursing pillow and baby pretty much covered the rest of me :-)

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27 Ashley October 11, 2012 at 8:26 am

Wrapping one of the aa swaddles over my shoulders (folded in half) is perfect for me in the middle of the night. Or a light robe (like your striped one?).

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28 TinaD October 12, 2012 at 7:42 am

When I was nursing during the night in the fall and winter, I wore two piece pajamas which had a button down top, and just unbuttoned enough for access. Easy peasy, no cold shoulders.

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29 michelle October 13, 2012 at 3:22 pm

I’m using hoodies with zippers a lot.

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30 Claire October 14, 2012 at 11:28 am

Total non-mom question (but pregnant!), don’t you nursing moms worry about the zippers scratching baby’s face? Or is that not so much an issue?

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31 emily October 14, 2012 at 10:37 pm

Yep – i lived in zippered hoodies at night. Zipped all the way down so it was never near my LO’s face

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32 Hotpotatokate October 14, 2012 at 1:41 am

I wear a flannel button down unbuttoned over a nursing tank :)

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33 Julie H. of Spinach and Sprinkles October 10, 2012 at 8:35 pm

AGREE!!! ….I have had to take my robe out of hiding due to the same issue!!!

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34 Lee October 11, 2012 at 1:22 am

Your vitamin D drop link is to the product for kids, not the d drops for babies. While the dose is the same for both (400 IU) the instructions for use are different. For example, the recommendation for kids is to mix with food or drink, which could be confusing (and incorrect) for someone with a baby. The directions for baby is to place a drop on the nipple (breast or bottle). You don’t want to mix it with the bottle of formula because if baby doesn’t finish it then you won’t be sure if they got the drop.

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35 KERF October 11, 2012 at 4:01 am

Oh sorry, I will fix the link tomorrow.

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36 KERF October 11, 2012 at 10:20 am

Those are actually the ones I bought, but I have been following the infant instructions (my doctor told me what to do for an infant). Thanks for pointing out the diff.

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37 A Mom October 11, 2012 at 11:58 am

It seems like something pretty simple to fix when it will save time and money for readers who are supporting you by buying through your affiliate links. It’s odd that you feel like you need to wait until tomorrow.

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38 KERF October 11, 2012 at 12:16 pm

I don’t see the infant one listed or I would link to it. If you can find it, please share. It doesn’t seem like there is even a difference. And I was waiting until tomorrow because I responded to this comment at 3am, half asleep, from my phone! -A tired mom

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39 A Mom October 11, 2012 at 8:14 pm
40 KERF October 12, 2012 at 1:34 am

Thanks. No idea why I couldn’t find it. 1:30am so ill fix the link tomorrow : )

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41 Annie October 12, 2012 at 2:56 pm

I noticed you respond to comments in the middle of the night. I’m sure you do this, but thought I’d share some of the most helpful advice I received from my pediatrician sister-in-law when the first if my three children was born. We followed with all three and absolutely never had trouble getting babies back to sleep. They were also a dream to get to sleep through the night- my youngest at 3 weeks!

She told us to be “all business” for night feedings- no lights (night lights in the hall), no talking, no smiling and no diaper changes if possible (only dirty diapers!). I used cloth diapers during the day & disposable at night. I would get the baby, pick him/her up, avoid eye contact and feed, burp and put back I the crib. No tv! No phones!

Days were for interacting and bonding with smiles and lots and lots of talking. Nights were for sleeping!

Also, I tightly rolled up receiving blankets and used as a sort of bumper around the baby (not near face). It felt more secure than being all alone in the center of a huge crib. Do you use a bassinet? Those were also helpful.

Just a little hint that was like magic for us- all three of mine had their days and nights confused so it was a process- bedtime routine followed by my business like approach to feeding. :)

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42 KERF October 12, 2012 at 3:16 pm

I have heard this too. But I haven’t figured out how to do everything in the dark yet. And he has to be changed after almost every feeding. And feedings can take up to 40 minutes , so I use my tablet to stay awake! But maybe when he’s a bit older and a more efficient nurser I can keep things more simple?

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43 Annie October 12, 2012 at 3:34 pm

Well, what worked for me & everybody is different, was to set up a station- have everything within reach. Possible scenario: hear baby start to cry on monitor, drag my weary body out of bed & turn on hall light, enter baby’s room with door open (we keep doors closed at night) only wide enough to let in enough light for me to see, carry baby to changing table & quickly & efficiently change diaper (by the time you get to second baby you can change a diaper in your sleep!). This took maybe 2 minutes. Then settle baby & myself into rocking chair or glider and nurse. I just was able to stay awake by watching baby and the clock! But as you said, maybe when he is more efficient, he will be able to feed quicker.

Oh, and another thing that kept me awake was keeping baby awake! He/she (all 3!) would fall asleep nursing and I’d have to “tickle”, I.e. rub their cheek to wake up and get them to start nursing again. Their job was to nurse and not sleep, and mine was to feed and keep awake enough to fill their baby belly!

By the time I had my third, I cherished that special nighttime feeding because I knew he was my last baby. And of course, he only did it for three weeks! (I considered a six hour stretch sleeping through the night even though he was up at 5-6-am). I know I would not have wanted to hear this at the stage you are at now, but I truly would give anything to have my kids as babies again. It goes so fast! Just keep telling yourself that this won’t last forever. Best of luck!

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44 KERF October 12, 2012 at 3:39 pm

Thanks for the advice! ( and yes I’m very jealous: ) )

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45 Claire October 12, 2012 at 3:48 pm

A dimmer switch works wonders – hook one up to the light next to your bed! That way you can do everything with the bare minimum light needed. In the beginning when my baby still pooped during every feed I had prefolds and wipes on my bedside table, with the laundry hamper at the foot of the bed. When my girl would wake up to nurse, I would nurse side-lying and then change her diaper between sides (while never actually leaving the bed, since she was in the arm’s reach co-sleeper and everything was within arm’s reach as well) and she would fall right back to sleep after the second side. By a month or so in, each wake-up was maybe 20-30 minutes, tops! It made a HUGE difference. And I never tried to read or do anything while nursing at night and it really helped a lot because I would nurse while half asleep, and would be back fully asleep within minutes after the nursing session ended. If you’re reading/on the Internet while nursing at night, you’re confusing YOUR body as well as Mazen’s, and it will start to interfere with your natural sleep cycles. Since I’ve got a poor sleeper (still multiple wake-ups at night at 10 months) and I work full time, being able to fall right back to sleep after nursing (along with co-sleeping starting at 4 months) is a godsend.

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46 Hotpotatokate October 14, 2012 at 1:42 am

I don’t know what you use lightwise, but we have found nightlights or leaving a light on in ad adjacent room really good for night feedings (etc). It was awhile before I could change him in the dark though!

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47 Chrissy October 11, 2012 at 1:35 am

My “baby” is 18, so this might sound old-fashioned, but I truly believe there are very few MUST haves for babies. Some breasts, some diapers and wipes, simple clothing, a place to sleep, blankets, some sort of carrier, a stroller, and a car seat. For mom – nursing bras and nursing pads. There are wants and then there are needs.

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48 KERF October 11, 2012 at 4:00 am

I kept my list pretty short : ) most of these are to make moms life a lot easier rather than being baby necessities

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49 Mary October 11, 2012 at 5:47 am

Great post, thanks.

And useful seeing as I’m 7 months now and thinking I should start buying some things! (Have ordered pram, car seat and base, and have a few second-hand clothes, but that’s it!)

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50 Sue October 11, 2012 at 6:50 am

Without further ADO you loser.

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51 KERF October 11, 2012 at 7:31 am

My mom is in Paris right now; I was testing you! Love, Loser

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52 Mary D. October 11, 2012 at 12:26 pm

Just wanted to share something quick about Vitamin D drops. I wasn’t aware that breastmilk did not provide enough vitmain D for babies until I read an article on it. I brought it up to my doctor on our two week visit and he recommended the Enfamil brand. He let us know that one of the patients who shopped at some kind of organic supermarket (like Whole Foods or Wild by Nature– just giving an example. Not trying to bash on these stores) purchased Organic vitamin D drops. The dosage on the bottle was actually wrong and the baby did overdose. I know it seems obvious to just ask your pediatrcian first about certain brands but some people really want to live ‘stricly organic’ and also want that for their childrens diet and just go ahead without the pediatrcians go-ahead.

Again, I know it may seem obvious but always ask a peditrician for recommended brands of any product before letting your child injest them.

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53 vanessa October 11, 2012 at 1:34 pm

gee, how ever did anyone live without a baby feeding app?

for the chilly nights-perhaps try wrapping a long pashima around your shoulders. If you’re chilly, imagine what baby M might feel, the pictures you have posted lately don’t seem to have him and socks or hats much, especially at the outdoor wedding.

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54 KERF October 11, 2012 at 1:48 pm

At the outdoor wedding, he was wearing a bear hat, cowboy booties, a blanket and in a carrier against us when the temps got cool. It was quite warm during the daytime. Lastly, most of the photos are taken during a 5 minute period when he was not all bundled up/in the carrier. Please consider asking before you question me as a mother.

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55 Stacey October 12, 2012 at 12:46 am

I don’t think Vanessa is questioning you as a mother. She just seems to be pointing out that Mazen looks a little cold. People usually worry about how warm babies are and to be honest, in that post you complained several times about how cold you were… that combined with the pictures of Mazen with bare feet could lead people to think that he was cold.

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56 KERF October 12, 2012 at 1:31 am

Fair enough. I’m just sensitive about people picking on my parenting based on photos when real life shares the whole story. I’m really flip flopping between not posting photos and sharing with those who are egging me on for more baby pictures (and I do want to share overall or I wouldn’t be)

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57 Susan October 12, 2012 at 2:36 pm

Understandable. I’ve definitely developed thicker skin since becoming a mom. Oddly enough, the toughest critics are other mothers … too bad bc none of us truly know what we’re doing at times and many of us could use more encouragement.
I know it’s so difficult, but just let it roll off your back. You are learning what’s best for your family and imperfections are part of process. Accept wise counsel from the wise and move on.
You’re doing a wonderful job, Kath. From one imperfect mom to the next …. rock on.

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58 Emily October 12, 2012 at 10:38 pm

Well put Susan, as a new mother myself – I’m learning the same!

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59 Tina March 18, 2013 at 1:43 am

I think people with good manners & a little class.. respect for others.. would not be so obviously critical, but encouraging. Or give her the benefit of the doubt & don’t say anything. I am a mother of 3 & a grandmother. My feet are a little cool right now and it feels great. I know we are not talking about adults, but point is.. we are all different.
But I also know that people will criticize this post too. People can be so mean.
I love the name Mazen. I have a son named Mason :-)

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60 Vandana M Khemka October 11, 2012 at 3:44 pm

great list.I m soon gonna come with my list :-)

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61 Lauren October 11, 2012 at 4:50 pm

I appreciate you writing these posts considering someone out there is always going to question how you do things. I will definitely be bookmarking this list for reference when I have a little one. Thanks for the peek inside your life with your adorable baby!

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62 Andrea @ The Skinny Chronicles October 11, 2012 at 6:33 pm

Thanks for the list Kath! I am trying to hold off on my baby shopping spree until after the shower. So hard to wait.

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63 Hannie October 12, 2012 at 3:46 am

Our baby boy (which had about the same due date as your boy) is using the swaddleme. Since we really like swaddling him I am excited to read about the other options. I really like your recommendation posts. We also have duplicate seats, pillows and even breast pumps on the different stories of our house. I feel that many people think we just bought/ borrowed to much stuff. But we feel it is way more relaxing for us as parents to have those things available at different locations. It’s nice to see that someone on the other side of the ocean has the same approach. I am curious about the milkies milk saver. I will definitely check whether something like this is available in the Netherlands.

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64 Amanda October 12, 2012 at 2:45 pm

I used an app very similar to this one for about a day and stopped after I realized I was more focused on documenting everything instead of bonding with my baby. In my opinion, it was not worth it. It’s sad that we are so focused on technology now, it’s a wonder how women in older generations handled raising children before a fancy app was available to tell them how.

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65 KERF October 12, 2012 at 3:00 pm

I’m sorry you felt that way. It has been very helpful to me. Bonding and app using aren’t dependant on one another.

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66 Amanda October 12, 2012 at 3:31 pm

I assure you, I had (and still have) plenty of bonding time with my little one. I just realized that as a mom, there are things far more important to do with your child than charting every single thing in an app when I could remember them just as easily. They are only small for so long, it was such an amazing time to just soak them in. But, this is purely my opinion. To each their own, and if the app is what works for you then that’s what you have to do.

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67 Emily M. October 12, 2012 at 8:08 pm

So I was reading these comments today and was so surprised by so many critics. As moms we should support each other versus spend so much time making comments about other peoples babies cold feet. I think we should assume that most people are doing what they feel is best…

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68 Melissa October 13, 2012 at 11:15 am

I second this. I am just shaking my head reading this. I didn’t expect for her to get so much kick back and criticism for what I thought was an excellent post…to each thier own and if it doesn’t agree with your parenting skills, don’t comment…easy peasy.

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69 Mary October 17, 2012 at 3:52 am

Exactly my thoughts!

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70 Lauren C October 12, 2012 at 9:30 pm

Emily – I could not agree with you more. What’s up with the criticism? These are snapshots of someone’s life. I would hate for someone to judge me on my mothering skills based on a few pictures that I posted. Regarding the constant comments on whether Maze needs more clothes – my son sounds very similar, he’s a furnace and anything more than a light pair of PJs makes him sweaty and overheated. Every child is different and no one knows better than that child’s mother.

For what it’s worth, I agree wholeheartedly with pretty much everything you’ve recommended for new moms. I’ve used almost all of them. Yes, maybe our grandmothers didn’t have all of this stuff and they made due, but is that a reason to not use them? I don’t think so!

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71 Lissy October 12, 2012 at 9:58 pm

Seriously folks…
I love reading about Kath’s experiences, not sure why people are being haters.
The old saying, “if you can’t say something nice, don’t say anything at all” rings true at this point.

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72 Meryl October 13, 2012 at 5:52 am

I hope you don’t take these unnecessary negative comments to heart. I think it is more than obvious you are a wonderful, devoted, devoted and caring mother. Some people are just generally unhappy and want to bring others down with them. I’ve loved reading kerf for the past five years and now as a new mom as well I read berf and I love reading your thoughts on this new topic. I hope the comments start to die down as berf gets older.

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73 Chrissy October 13, 2012 at 6:39 pm

I also feel like my baby was more likely to be hot than cold. I got a few sock comments in real life, but whatever. I feel badly for the kids completely bundled up when it’s warm outside! Esp. if you wear your baby a lot, they get SO warm. even in the winter. Comments about the warmth of Maze are pretty unwarranted and unfair, but I think it is fair to give opinions about the must-have list if you have a different experience (of course if you can do it in a nice way). I’ve used the carrier every day since I’ve been home from the hospital (for 13 months!!!), but I never used nursing tanks/bras or a breast friend. AND YES to a water bottle!! It’s so crazy how as soon as he latches you get thirsty immediately!

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74 KERF October 13, 2012 at 6:50 pm

Agreed – he is always super warm in the carrier. We tend to under dress him a bit if we know he’ll be in there or he gets all sweaty. At least in this transitional seasonal months.

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75 Erin October 13, 2012 at 9:15 pm

I too was surprised by some of the negative comments and Kathy I can completely understand being sensitive. I’m always amazed that you can balance the blogs and life with an itty bitty one as well as make/eat such wonderful food. I was in a total haze the first month of my daughters life. One thing I have learned in my 9 1/2 months as V’s momma is that you have to find your own way and do what works for your family–from baby gear to feeding and sleeping options. Sites like yours are so helpful to see how others are figuring out how to be parents and real life experiences have proven so much more useful than anything I’ve read in a book. Hope you’re having a wonderful weekend!

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76 Sonia the Mexigarian October 15, 2012 at 5:04 pm

Had to comment on the leaves on his head. Literally LOL’d. And his expression just adds to the humor :) So cute!! <3 Are the leaves some sort of hat? Or just a prop from a toy?

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77 KERF October 15, 2012 at 5:09 pm

It’s a toy lettuce head : )

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78 Amelia October 15, 2012 at 5:18 pm

That last pic is so incredibly precious!

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79 Donna October 16, 2012 at 7:45 pm

Lauren C, you crack me up talking about how your GRANDMOTHER didn’t have all of this technology. I bet your mother didn’t either! I say that because I’m old enough to be Kath’s mother, and I didn’t have any technology when my boys were babies, unless you include a corded phone –on the wall– in the other room.

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80 Catherine October 17, 2012 at 12:00 pm

Kath, I love your blog: it’s well laid out, beautifully illustrated and the information and reviews are hugely helpful to me as new mother to be (even though I live in the UK!) Mazen is a beautiful baby and I have no doubt that you are a fantastic mother. I am so sorry about the critical comments you have received and just hope they are far outweighed by positive feedback!

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81 Lani October 17, 2012 at 8:32 pm

Kath’s care for her son is evident in everything she does. She is providing readers with a valuable resource of information. If readers do not want to read her tips here, then may I politely suggest they skip them. Simple as that.

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82 Kattrina October 18, 2012 at 4:38 pm

I agree with all of those things! I love the Brest Friend too – it makes nursing so much easier. When I went to a breastfeeding class the instructor was actually against any kind of pillow but I’m glad I didn’t listen to her because I love that pillow.

I also love the miracle swaddler. Someone gave it to us as a gift and I am so glad because Evan breaks out of everything! I can’t get my blanket swaddles tight enough to resist his arms and the velcro ones he can break free from in record time. We only have one miracle swaddler and we use it all the time.

I can’t think of anything you didn’t mention that we love. You were spot on!

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83 S November 3, 2013 at 10:12 pm

I am not aware of the miracle swaddler, but want to share what helped me with swaddling. After taking care of babies for over twenty years I finally learned how to swaddle a baby so they stay swaddled and settle easily. I watched a video of Dr. Harvey Karp’s Happiest Baby on the Block. It really has made a big difference. A larger light weight blanket does help, I like the Swaddleme, .but sure there are others. there are clips of the video on Youtube.

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84 Sara January 3, 2013 at 10:03 am

Re-reading your list now (since I’m expecting and trying to decide on a monitor.) Do you have an AngelCare monitor too or just the video monitor? I’m torn between the AngelCare and Video.

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85 KERF January 3, 2013 at 11:03 am

I have both and would 100% get the video and skip the Angelcare

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86 Sara January 3, 2013 at 11:51 am

Thanks, Kath! I feel like I’m getting to obsessed over the monitor. I know back in the day people didn’t have monitors or just had the audio monitors but there are so many options it is overwhelming. Do you use both or just the video? Thanks for your help!

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87 Sara January 3, 2013 at 11:52 am

too**

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88 KERF January 3, 2013 at 4:01 pm

Just the video now. The AC was kind of finicky

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89 lauren January 7, 2013 at 10:45 am

hi kath!

did you register for and/or purchase a high chair? i really don’t want a plastic cartoony thing, but i also don’t want to spend $200+! where is the middle ground?!

thanks much,

lauren

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90 KERF January 7, 2013 at 11:26 am

Yes we got this pretty chair from my parents and can’t wait to set it up soon!

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91 Kelli March 13, 2013 at 12:29 am

I used sleep sacks for my lo instead of the swaddlers, it kept him cozy without having to feel like I was confining him. He loved to get his arms free from being swaddled. I could also use them for longer, he slept in them until he was 6 months old. The only reason we stopped was it was getting warmer out and he didn’t like being confined anymore.

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92 April March 18, 2013 at 12:43 am

I have a 15 month old and the ONE thing that I could not have lived without was the Rock n Play. Ellsie slept in our room in her rnp for the first six months. I didn’t have to worry about her rolling over or choking on spit up because it had an incline.

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93 Tina March 18, 2013 at 2:14 am

I enjoyed your list. I have a couple of baby showers coming up and I was looking to see new products. My favorite item was probably the receiving blankets, I just loved the prints.
Just for fun I will share this.. My grandmother gave birth to my father in 1939. They were poor according to riches, but rich in love and God. His first bed was a dresser drawer. She probably had a few outfits and diapers for him and not much else. (Jesus had a manger :) I am glad we have come a long way since then, & I love products that can make a mothers life easier and a baby safer.. etc. I do like to tell new mothers to try to not stress too much when they think they need ALL the “stuff”. When I was pregnant and apprehensive many years ago, I asked my grandmother what I needed.. “& how I could be a mother half as good as her?!” She said, “Just love him.” You would be amazed to know how calming that was then, or how profound it has become. When you love your child, as a gift from God, and follow your instincts.. everything else falls into place. Good luck new mothers! And as you’ve heard many times.. time flies way too fast.

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94 Mary April 4, 2013 at 11:29 am

a car seat caddy is GREAT for the car. We used ours all the time, we actually got the baby trend one though. We have a Chicco car seat and it works great with it. And it is about $50 dollars cheaper. You only use it until they grow out of the baby car seat so we thought we’d save a little bit on it:)

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95 Keri April 13, 2013 at 10:04 am

Seriously did you come to my house after my baby was born!? We used about everything on this list and I highly recommend each item, especially the My Breast Friend! Very cool!

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96 Ilsa April 18, 2013 at 11:53 am

I didn’t read all the comments because frankly, with 3 kids running around me I barely had enough time to read the post LOL My must haves are #1 Several Woombies, these are THE best saddlers! there’s no Velcro just a zipper and it hugs their little bodies perfectly but still allows them to wiggle and move, much like while they were in the womb :D #2 a adjustable and timed warmer. You need to be careful with this one since the baby can over heat but, my mother taught me this trick when my first child was born. What you do is slip the heating pad set to low underneath the mattress of your bassinet (or under a couple of layers of blankets if you’re not using a bassinet) and then put one of your shirts in the bed near the baby (I always hang it on the side because I don’t want them rolling on to it) then you swaddle baby and lay them to sleep. It makes them think that they’re still in your womb! It works like magic, I was able to get 3-4 of sleep at a time doing this. It sometimes worked too well, she would sleep for 6 hours at only 2 months old, when she started doing that I set an alarm to wake my self up to feed and change her.

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97 Tori April 21, 2013 at 12:11 am

Thank you for this post! Very informative!

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98 bridget April 23, 2013 at 8:54 pm

Thank you for this list! I pinned it immediately! I CANNOT wait until I get everything on your list ESPECIALLY my brest friend! And through reading everyone’s comments I actually learned more about breast feeding! Im glad I pinned this! I’m due in aug…..so I’m committing as much of this as I can to my pregnant brain. We shall see how much sticks…….wait……what was I talking about? lol jk ps great suggestion about the water bottle……AND THE BABY APP! I was looking through it and thanking whoever, that I am pregnant in this day and age lol

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99 Rene Sarria April 26, 2013 at 10:51 am

Great list. I agree especially with some the baby app, we used Simliac’s baby app to keep up with breast feelings, and Moms Breast Friend Saved my back! We have both the boppy and MBF and I like the for different reasons. The boppy can be used as a propping pillow when they are older so for that I recommend both. The ABSOLUTE MUST HAVE (or see) is the book or video called “THE HAPPIEST BABY ON THE BLOCK”. With our first child we thought she might have collic or bad gas, that was until we put all of Dr. Karp’s method together. It worked like a light switch! There is a 20 min video sold on amazon that I highly recommend.
And the last item: rock n play sleeper is a must have also!

Good luck,
Mommy of 2 baby girls (17 months and 7 weeks)

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100 shannon May 1, 2013 at 10:20 am

I bought the same drops that you recommended here- How did you give them to Mazen? I have a hard time getting a drop in my baby’s mouth. I am afraid I may be given too much not knowing if he got the first drop! Any suggestions? Thanks :)

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101 KERF May 1, 2013 at 11:48 am

I put one on the tip of my pinky finger and put in on his gums

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102 Jacquie July 9, 2013 at 1:59 pm

My son was born in Oct 2012. He is STILL obsessed with the aden & anais muslin blankets. He has to have one to suck on when he sleeps because we swaddled him in them. We now own like 12 of them.

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103 Nicole August 10, 2013 at 9:59 am

A little behind here, but I have to second (and third, and fourth…) the BabyConnect suggestion. Best money I have EVER spent on an app!

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104 AmyW February 17, 2014 at 11:11 pm

Hi Kath- I am back in the baby-gear buying business after 4 years and I feel like I am totally starting over so I am loving your blog for this reason!! Crazy what life’s journey holds for us…anywhoo..trying to pick out a diaper bag that will be useful but on the smallish side bc this baby is #5 for us and I have older kids and lots of sporting events that I need to be hauling this baby along to, so I do not want a huge diaper bag. Been looking at the one you have…how has it worked out? And I also have the frame Chicco stroller that has a small basket underneath it…does your diaper bag fit in there?
Thanks so much!!
Amy W, Chicago

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105 KERF February 18, 2014 at 7:42 am

We do really like it and it fit nicely in all of the strollers. The exterior pockets were especially good.

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106 Jerney May 13, 2014 at 2:07 am

There’s an app for free called Baby Bundle on the App Store. It tracks feeding, diaper changes, and sleep. It sounds just like the app you described. But FREE lol

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