How To Prepare Your Home For a Newborn - 11 Tips For New Mommas

How To Prepare Your Home For a Newborn - 11 Tips For New Mommas

Preparing to bring a newborn home from the hospital can be overwhelming and scary, especially if this is your very first time. What do you need to buy? What do you need to clean? What do you need or organize? There is definitely a lot to do, but I promise that if you have a solid checklist and a little bit of drive, you will get to the point where everything is ready and prepped before your baby arrives.

This post is broken out into eleven sections. It was created so that you can take it section by section as you begin to prepare your home. The list is fairly comprehensive and my goal in putting it together is to make it much easier for you to get some sleep at night and actually feel ready to have your baby. Let’s dive in.

Prepare Yourself 

The first and hands down, the most important thing you need to do before bringing your baby home from the hospital is to prepare yourself. Having a brand new baby is incredibly daunting and stressful. Here are the things you should consider doing before you head to the hospital for delivery:

Prenatal Class - If you haven’t taken a prenatal class yet, you should probably consider it. You should be able to find several places that offer these kinds of classes throughout your community. They also have online prenatal classes that you can sign up for here.

Learn How To Meditate - One of the best ways to deal with the stress and anxiety of having a newborn in your home is to find time to meditate every day. Meditation will help you get your “head right” and give you the headspace to think and find ways to cope with your stress. One of the best meditation apps is the HeadSpace app. It has a free version and paid version. The free version is enough to get you started. You can learn more about it here.

Prepare Your Home 

After you’ve taken time to prepare yourself for your newborn, now is the time to begin to prepare your home. When you are recovering from giving birth and not sleeping from all-night feedings, etc., trying to figure out how to manage your home is near impossible.

When preparing your home, you’ll want to make sure to order a bunch of the basic necessities.

Kitchen Supplies

  • Freezer meals
  • Easy sides like rice, potatoes, etc.
  • Condiments like ketchup, mustard, mayo, etc.
  • Basic oils you use when cooking
  • Food staples like butter, sugar, bread, peanut butter, etc. 
  • Easy snacks
  • Quick Meals like soup, mack & cheese, etc.
  • Disposable Dinnerware

Basic Cleaning Supplies (non-toxic, baby safe and eco-friendly)

  • Basic multi-purpose cleaner
  • Baby safe laundry detergent
  • Baby safe dishwashing tablets
  • Wool dryer balls

Baby Supplies

  • Baby soap
  • Diapers cloth or disposable
  • Wipes
  • Diaper Cream
  • Baby Powder
  • Formula (if you’re not planning on breastfeeding)

You can either shop for these things yourself, or do an Amazon Prime order. Don’t we love Amazon so much?

Prepare Your Living Room

If you’re like most mommas, you spend the majority of your day in your living room. This will be no different once your little bundle of joy arrives. Plan on doing tummy time, book reading, playing with toys and lounging around on the couch while baby is sleeping. You can also set up your changing and feeding station close by.

Living Room Essentials

  • Tummy Time Station - as we’ve covered in another post, this is our favorite tummy time station.
  • Breastfeeding & Changing Station - Many moms have several feeding and changing stations throughout their home. Having a mini station in your living room will make managing both tasks much easier. 
  • Books & Toys Specifically for Newborns & 0-3 Months
  • Babywearing - If you’re an active mom, you’ll probably want to wear your baby as much as possible. Our favorite, forward-facing baby carrier is the Ergobaby embrace. You can buy it here.

Prepare Your Kitchen

Next, you’ll want to take the time to prepare your kitchen. I can’t stress how awesome it is to have a freezer full of food after your baby is born. Even if you have a very close-knit, support system of family and friends willing to bring you meals, having frozen meals ready to go once those meals stop is a lifesaver.

If you choose to go the freezer meal route, you’ll want to prep your meals at least six weeks in advance. Just so you don’t go into labor before you are able to get them done. Here are some of the best things to prep in advance:

  • Spaghetti Sauce - Cook a few batches of spaghetti sauce (make sure to add protein like hamburger) and freeze it in ziplock freezer bags and when you’re ready, you can throw it in a crockpot and cook up some noodles that evening for dinner.
  • Soups - Nothing is better than some pre-cooked crockpot soups that you can throw in and forget about until dinner time. Some family favorites include chicken noodle, minestrone, and vegetable beef.
  • Waffles & French Toast - Did you know that these two awesome breakfast foods hold up great in the freezer and prepare easily with a toaster?
  • Taco Meat - Cook up some taco meat including ground beef or chicken and throw it in the freezer. You can throw this in the microwave along with some soft flour tortillas and you’ve got a meal in less than five minutes.

Prepare Your Bedroom

After the living room, the next place you’ll be spending most of your time after having your baby is your bedroom. Chances are, this will not only be the place where you sleep but where your baby will sleep for the first 4-6 weeks after coming home from the hospital. Some of the items needed to prepare your bedroom can be transitioned to the nursery once your little one vacates the premises, so when you’re going through each list, make note of which ones you can move.

Bedroom Essentials

  • Bassinet - Similar to a crib, a bassinet is what your little one will sleep in while living in your room. You’ll want to make sure to get one with wheels that you can roll up to your bed in the middle of the night.
  • Swaddle - You’ll want to make sure to have a couple swaddle blankets on hand in case one of them gets soiled while feeding or changing. We love these Swaddle Me swaddles.
  • Nighttime Sleep Clothes - Like a swaddle, you’ll want to keep a few extra changes of sleep clothes on hand in case they get soiled. Our newborn baby knotted gowns are a great night time outfit that makes for easy changes in the middle of the night.
  • Pacifiers - If your baby takes a binky, you’ll want to have several on hand for when you drop one in the middle of the night and can’t find it.
  • White Noise Machine - It’s very difficult to get a good night's sleep if you can hear every move that your baby is making throughout the night. You’ll want to invest in a good sound machine to help you get the sleep you desperately need. The Dohm noise machines are a fan favorite.
  • Baby Monitor - If you’re planning on your baby taking naps in their bassinet, you’ll want to get a good video monitor for you to keep an eye on your baby.
  • Blackout Curtains - Again, if you’re planning on your baby taking naps in your room, you’ll want to get some blackout curtains so they can fall asleep quickly and stay asleep as long as possible.

Prepare Your Bathroom

Preparing your bathroom is an essential part of preparing your home, especially since this activity is essential for a quick recovery after labor and delivery. You’ll want to start pulling all of these things together at least eight weeks before your due date to give you plenty of time to make sure you have everything. Here are the must-have items:

  • Giant Pads - You’ll learn pretty quick that normal pads won’t cut it after having a baby. Make sure to get some of the biggest pads you can find, with wings, of course. You’ll want at least a two weeks supply.
  • Disposable Underwear - The hospital will give you several pairs of super lame underwear. When those get solid, you’ll want to make sure to have some disposable underwear that you can toss after each wear.
  • Peri Bottle - Fridababy makes a peri-bottle which has a nozzle specifically designed to be held upside down, which is what you’ll need when cleaning yourself when you get home. You can get one of them here.
  • Dermoplast - As you’ll quickly learn, dermoplast is going to be your best friend for a few weeks after giving birth. This spray will help with all of the burning and itching that you’ll experience down stairs. You’ll want to get at least two cans, maybe three.
  • Epsoak Epsom Salt - Lastly, make sure you get a few big bags of Dr. Teals Epsoak Epsom Salt for sitz baths.

Prepare The Nursery

Chances are, you won’t be using the nursery until your baby is 6-8 weeks old. Some mommas wait even longer (3-4 months), but regardless, you won’t be using it much with the exception of storing clothes, toys, etc. You might be spending more time there if you’ve placed your feeding and changing station in there, but many moms put those in living rooms and bedrooms to have them close by.

As you can probably imagine, you can really go all out with your nursery, especially if this is your first baby. Because of this, I won’t be listing out everything you can buy, but only listing some of the essentials that you need to get in order to be prepared.

Nursery Essentials

  • Crib - I don’t have much to share here because there are so many different types of cribs on the market. Just make sure you find one that fits the style of your home and you’ll be set.
  • Mattress - Honestly, you don’t need the most expensive mattress on the market. A general rule of thumb is to pick one that’s kind of in the middle price range.
  • Sheets - As you’ll soon find out, you’ll want to get a few sets of sheets so you can quickly swap them out when your baby spits up or has a blowout.
  • Dresser/Changing Table - Many moms decide to get a dresser and changing table. I’d suggest getting a nice dresser and then a good changing pad that can sit on the top of the dresser. The reason you’ll want to do this is that as your child grows, a dresser can grow with them.
  • Changing Pad - Like a mattress, you don’t need the most expensive pad. You should find something in the middle price range.
  • Blackout Curtains - You’ll not only want blackout curtains for your bedroom, but you’ll want a set for the baby's room as well.
  • Baby Monitor - Once your baby moves into the nursery, you’ll want to relocate the baby monitor. This monitor is one of the most and highest rated monitors on Amazon.
  • Clothes - Obviously, your baby needs clothes. Make sure to have 8-10 different outfits ready for when you get home from the hospital.

Prepare The Nursing & Changing Station

Having a feeding and changing station close by is absolutely critical for a new mom. As mentioned before, many moms choose to have two stations, one in the living room and one in the bedroom. Some moms opt to have one, in the nursery that can be used at any time of the day or night. Regardless of where you decide to have your station, there are core essentials that you must include.

Nursing & Changing Station Essentials

  • Changing Pad & Cover - If you’re changing diapers in the nursery, you’ll want a changing pad that you can put on top of a dresser. If not, a blanket on the floor will do just fine. As mentioned above, we like this pad you can find on Amazon.
  • Burp Clothes - Unless you like spit up all over you, your clothes, and furniture, you’ll want to make sure you have at least a dozen or so burp cloths. You don’t need anything fancy, we like these on Amazon.
  • Nursing Pillow - Nursing pillows are a godsend for new moms. They make it incredibly easy for you to hold and nurse your little one. We love the Ergobaby natural curve nursing pillow. You can buy one here.
  • Soft Light/Lamp - When you’re feeding in the night time, you’ll want to make sure to get yourself a soft light or lamp you can turn on to help you see what you’re doing.
  • Diaper Pail - If you are planning on using disposable diapers, you’ll definitely want a diaper pail to throw those stink bombs into after you’re done changing. We love the diaper genie pail. You can buy them here.
  • Rocking Chair - A rocking chair is an absolute must-have as part of your nursing station. The rocking sensation calms baby and oftentimes helps them eat better than if you were sitting on a couch or in bed. 

Prepare For Bath Time

One thing that both excites and scares new moms to death is the first bath session. It can be so fun to bathe your baby, but also very scary for the first time mom. Having your bath setup with everything you need is one way to make sure you are ready to go and have what you need to get the job done. 

Baby Bathing Essentials

  • Bathtub - When bathing your baby, you’ll need something to hold them in place while you wash them. Many moms choose to get those foam pads that baby can lay on, but we recommend a baby bathtub. We like this one on Amazon.
  • Wash Clothes - You can probably use just about any washcloth around your house to bathe your baby, but many companies make super soft clothes specifically for babies. We like these on Amazon.
  • Soap - Believe it or not, your baby needs special soap for their soft, delicate skin. We love the Burts Bees baby wash. You can buy it here.
  • Hooded Bath Towel - Sure, you could use any towel you have laying around, but hooded towels make it easy to keep your baby warm after bathing, but also makes it incredibly easy to dry him/her off. We like this towel on Amazon.
  • Kneeling Pad - If you’re bathing your baby in a large tub, with their baby tub in it, you’ll definitely want to buy a cheap kneeling pad. I promise it will save your knees and make the experience that much better for you.

Prepare The Car

Even though your car is outside of your home, I thought it was still very relevant and needed to be addressed in this post.

Basic Car Essentials

  • Car Seat - If you plan on going anywhere with baby, it’s probably a given that you’ll need a good car seat. Most moms out there prefer a car seat that can attach/detach from a base so the car seat can be carried or attached to a stroller. One of the more popular, basic strollers is the Chicco. You can buy it here.
  • Car Seat Cover - Car seat covers are a relatively new thing. What once was just a blanket thrown over the car seat has transformed into a full cover that keeps the elements away from baby. One of our favorite covers is the Milk Snob cover. You can buy it here.
  • Car Seat Mirror - You’ll also want to purchase a mirror that can be attached to the back seat so you can keep an eye on what’s happening with baby and why he/she might be fussing. You can find these anywhere and just about anyone of them will do.

Prepare The Diaper Bag

Also, not necessarily a “home” item, but having your diaper bag packed and ready to come with you to the hospital is a must. I recently wrote a pretty robust post about it, so I won’t rehash it here, but here’s the link if you want to dig in: Diaper Bag Essentials For a New Mom - What To Pack In Your Bag.

Two wrap things up, if you haven’t gotten the hint, it’s probably best to start preparing your home early in your third trimester. If the task seems daunting, just take it room by room. Soon you’ll be ready and bringing your baby home from the hospital will be much easier and enjoyable. Good luck mamma!

Laurel Teuscher
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18 Tips For Traveling With Newborns

18 Tips For Traveling With Newborns

Very few things are as exciting as having a new baby, however, just because you have a new baby doesn’t mean you should put your entire life on hold. Babies are resilient little things and will put up with quite a lot. One of the more common questions mothers of newborns ask their doctors is, can I travel with my baby? Our post today will give you 15 tips on how to travel with your newborn in addition to some other information about traveling. Let’s dive in.

How Long Should You Wait To Travel With a Newborn?

I think it’s important to state, I am not a doctor, but have spoken to a lot of them. In general, most doctors say it’s okay to start traveling with new babies immediately, however, if you’re planning on flying (airplanes are gross), you should consider not doing so until your baby’s immune system is a little more developed. 

For full term infants, this could be as quickly as 3-4 weeks, for those who are little premature, you should wait a few months. I’ve even heard some doctors recommend anywhere between three and six months. Regardless, you should speak with your pediatrician before taking your baby on an airplane.

You should also know that airlines differ in their policies on infants flying. On Delta, a baby has to be more than one week old to fly. JetBlue’s policy says the baby has to be at least three days old. United Airlines refuses to allow babies younger than seven days old. So again, check with your pediatrician and then check with the airline you are planning on flying before booking your trip.

What Do You Need To Travel With a Newborn?

Once you’ve decided to take a trip with your new baby, what do you need to bring with you to make the experience great? This probably isn’t a comprehensive list, but it will cover most things you need to travel with a newborn.

What To Take On The Plane

  • Bassinet/Doc a Tot
  • Baby Carrier
  • Diapers
  • Wipes
  • Extra Change of Clothing
  • Formula
  • Clorox Wipes

What To Take For The Trip

  • Car Seat
  • Pack & Play
  • Luggage/Clothes For The Trip

Newborn Traveling Tips

Fly Direct If Possible

For many families, it’s way more cost-effective to have layovers as part of your travel plans, especially when you don’t need to be to your destination by any particular time. However, once you’ve welcomed a baby into the world, you might want to rethink this. As you learn your first time going through any airport, moving through security, getting to gates is no easy feat and many parents are more than happy to pay a little extra to avoid the additional hassle.

Respect Baggage Weight Limits & Be Prepared for Last-Minute Repacking

When packing your bags, you need to know how heavy your bags are allowed to be before incurring additional fees. Most airlines these days charge for the first bag that is checked and any bag weighing over 50 points incurs additional fees. Exact pricing will vary by airline, here’s a list of the major airline's baggage pricing fees:

You should also know that when you travel internationally, fees might be slightly different. So make sure you do your research beforehand.

One thing you’ll probably get really good at when traveling with small kids is repacking items on the fly when trying to check your bag with the airlines. I’ve seen plenty of parents pulling their luggage aside after being weighed and shuffling items to other checked bags as well as personal carry-ons in order to meet weight limits. You should keep in mind that on most airlines, having a second checked bag is often cheaper than having one, overweight bag. It’s also a good idea to have some spare room in one of your checked bags for souvenirs, especially if you are heading to Disney (our favorite place to travel).

Plan to Arrive Early

Traveling is stressful, especially now that extra security is needed at all airport terminals. Gone are the days when you can arrive at the airport an hour before your flight and get right to your gate with time to spare. 

Best practice is to arrive at least an additional hour early to allow plenty of time to help with the following:

  • Checking or gate-checking special items, such as strollers and car seats.
  • Waiting for special security screening - you have to go through the metal detector with your baby and many moms require a pat-down after going through. Your stroller also has to go through a detector.
  • Having at least one diaper change before boarding, which may involve waiting for a family restroom.
  • Having at least one feed before boarding.

Bring a Passport for Your Infant or Their Birth Certificate

One of the most common questions when traveling with a newborn or infant is if they need a form of identity. Personally, I’ve never seen this, but the TSA (Transportation Security Administration) agents are well within their rights to ask parents to produce a birth certificate or another form of ID such as a passport to prove they are who they say they are.

If you are traveling internationally, you absolutely need to have a passport for your infant, so that will push back the amount of time you’ll have to wait before traveling with your newborn. If you are wondering how long it takes to get a passport, the State Department recommends allowing at least eight weeks for it to arrive, however you can expedite the delivery for an additional fee. They cost right around $100 for a non-expedited passport.

Tag-Team Airport Security

Getting through security with small children and babies is much easier when there are two adults helping out. The routine that seems to work well is having the first parent start binning up electronic devices and liquids and then taking your baby through screening. The second parent then goes bins up their stuff and separates baby formula or other baby food (this always requires additional attention from security) and then folds up the stroller and puts it through the machine. If your stroller won’t go through the machine you have to wait until someone from security retrieves it from you.

If you are traveling solo with an infant, you’ll have a much easier time going through security if you’ve pre-sorted everything that TSA requires you to remove from your luggage so you can get it out quickly and get it through the scanner. You should also remember that it’s perfectly acceptable to leave your baby in the stroller until the very last minute, grab him or her and go. I’ve also seen some very nice TSA agents helping single parents navigate security. I’m not sure if this is an acceptable practice, but it doesn’t hurt to ask if you’re feeling frazzled.

Priority Boarding & Security Lanes For Families: Use them!

The wonderful thing about traveling with an infant and small children is the fact that you always get to board the plane during priority boarding. Always! It truly makes a huge difference being able to get your stuff in the overhead bins and get settled in before the plan gets crazy busy with people fighting for space. The same goes for security lines.

Not always, but many times when traveling with small children, you can find a security guard who will take you to the front, a priority line or a line for families. Even if you don’t see a line specifically labeled for this, it doesn’t hurt to find someone and ask them if there are special accommodations for families traveling with infants.

Utilize Airport Lounges Wherever Possible

For those who have had access to and used airport lounges, you know how amazing they are for parents with young children who are tired of crazy terminals, packed restaurants, and standing room only gate areas. They are especially great by having quiet feeding areas for babies, delicious meals for parents and unhurried diaper changes.

Pricing for these private lounges are pretty expensive ($30-90 per traveler), however, many reward cards offer free or discounted lounge access as a value-added perk. For example, the Chase Sapphire Reserve card offers complimentary access to more than 1,000 lounges in the Priority Pass Select network. If you have a credit card that offers travel rewards, check with them before you go on your trip to see if they offer anything like this.

Locate & Use Family Restrooms at the Airport

Before you get to the airport, you’ll want to get a map and locate all of the family restrooms near security and your departure gates. As you well know, blowouts are a common emergency and the best way to deal with and change one is by using the family restrooms… even if there is a line.

Change Diapers Before Boarding & Put On An Overnight Diaper

It’s always a smart thing for you to change any and all diapers right before you board. When doing so, it’s a good idea to change your baby into an overnight diaper. As you well know, overnight diapers are heavy-duty diapers designed to absorb huge amounts of urine and should contain almost any blowout until you can get to a restroom.

Wipe Down The Plane

Planes are one of the most disgusting things carrying lots of germs to make you and your little one sick. It’s always wise to pack a few Clorox wipes in a baggie or grab a travel size case of wipes from Amazon. As soon as you board the plane, take one out and wipe down the following:

  • TV Screen
  • Tray table
  • The back of the chair in front of you (before closing your tray table of course)
  • Headrest
  • Armrests
  • Seat belt

If you’re a total germaphobe, you can wipe down the entire seat, but most of the time this list will be enough.

Leave the Jogging Stroller at Home

Jogging strollers are fantastic and are capable of navigating everything from snow to mud and everything in between. The one thing they are not very good for? Traveling. For seasoned travelers who travel with small kids often, they know that the best option for traveling with a stroller is an umbrella stroller. These strollers are several inches narrower, about half the weight and are far more maneuverable. 

The one problem with an umbrella stroller is that they won’t accommodate a car seat attachment. If this is something you absolutely need, you’ll just need to bite the bullet and deal with it. Regardless of the stroller, you decide to bring, make sure to bring it through the entire airport and gate-check it as soon as you arrive in the boarding area.

Wear Your Baby

Another option to consider if you’d rather not bring your jogging stroller is to wear your baby in a carrier. Baby carriers all you to move around easily, navigate stairs and be faster and nimble as you move about the airport and your vacation destination. One other great advantage is that babies love to be close to their parents and oftentimes will doze off regardless of where you are (restaurant, airport, amusement park, etc.)

If You Can, Breastfeed Your Baby

When you are traveling with babies, the last thing you want to do is bring more luggage than you need to. If you are able to breastfeed your baby, you won’t have to worry about bringing large containers or bags full of formula. It also makes it super easy to feed anywhere, regardless of the time or place.

Leave The Cloth Diapers At Home

More and more parents are opting to use cloth diapers these days, but to be honest, they are an absolute nightmare to deal with when traveling. Not only do cloth diapers take up precious luggage space, but they have a high risk of leakage, which is never good on a plane or when you’re on the go. We’d recommend using disposables on vacation and then switching back to the cloth as soon as you are home from your trip. 

Pack More Than One Outfit Per Day

As we talked about in other posts, babies typically need more than one outfit per day. Since baby clothing is compact and lightweight, it shouldn’t be too big of an issue to double up on outfits without increasing your total baggage weight. If you’re looking for something extremely lightweight, our newborn knotted gowns fit the bill. 

Bring A Portable Sound Machine

Some parents want to bring their noise machine with them when they travel, but most of them take up too much space. Instead of opting to bring the sound machine with you, you can easily download an app on your phone or a tablet that will do the same thing. One of the more popular apps is called Rainy Mood and as you probably guessed it, has a light raining sound and is perfect for babies.

Have Travel Insurance

You never know when you or your baby might need to see a doctor when traveling. You’ll want to check if your health insurance will work outside of your state and if not, you’ll want to purchase travel insurance just in case.

Accept That Not Everything Will Go According To Plan

Whatever you do, keep in mind that some trips will definitely go smoother than others. Each trip is a new adventure and the number one tip we can leave you with is that not everything will go according to plan. Be flexible and patient and you will enjoy traveling with your little one.

Laurel Teuscher
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Getting Baby to Sleep During Summer Months

Getting Baby to Sleep During Summer Months

Getting your baby to sleep during any night is difficult, but during summer months, it can be even more difficult. In the wintertime, you can bundle your baby in layers and swaddles to keep him or her warm. But with warmer weather, you may not be sure how to dress your baby or whether to use air conditioning to cool off your baby. Here are some answers for you.

What should babies wear to bed in the summer?

There’s no one right answer for how to dress your baby to sleep during warm months. It depends on where you live and your baby’s preferences. However, you want to remember a few things. 

This normally isn’t an issue in summer, but if you’re thinking about running air conditioning like crazy to keep the temperature down and bundling up your baby, you might want to rethink your strategy. 

You may consider layers or lightweight, breathable fabric for baby’s pajamas. A knotted baby gown is a really good pajama to have because you can tuck their feet in and tie a knot as well as pull the cuffs over their hands to keep them warm. When babies are tiny, they are not able to regulate their body temperature so you need to do all that you can to help your baby.

Some experts recommend that you dress your baby in one more layer than you feel like wearing yourself, as a rule, to help you decide what they should wear. So if you’re putting on a sweatshirt because it’s a little chilly, then you want to make sure your baby has on pajamas and a swaddle. 

But you shouldn’t just consider what your baby is wearing, but how their room is set up. There is a link to SIDS from overheating at night. That means you need to look at several things in your house before you put your baby to sleep for the night.

Setting up the nursery for your baby during summer

In general, your baby’s room should be between 68 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit. If you don’t have a thermometer in their room, it would be a good idea to find a digital one to make sure that the nursery stays at the best temperature. Review the thermometer as your start your bedtime routine to check that the temperature is going to be optimal for your baby.

During the day, keep the blinds or curtains in the nursery closed, but windows open to help keep the room cool so that you don’t have to use AC. Some people don’t have air conditioning, so you might consider having a fan running in their room. Remember that a fan only moves the air in a room, it does not actually cool it. You may also keep the door open once everyone in the house has gone to bed so that air can flow more freely through the rooms.

The one thing that most parents forget about the summer is that the sun is out longer. This means your baby may wake to the sunshine and wake even earlier than normal. To prevent this, install some thick black-out curtains.

How do I know if my baby is too hot while sleeping?

Especially as the days turn warmer, you may need to check on your baby regularly to see how your baby is doing. Follow his cues to help determine whether your baby is uncomfortable or too warm.

Is your baby warm to the touch?

Don’t check fingers and toes to determine your baby’s body temperature. Check the back of the neck or the tummy. If you feel like the neck or tummy is hot or sticky, your baby is too warm.

You might also want to check if they have a fever. Use your digital thermometer to make sure that you’re accurate with their temperature.

Is your baby’s heartbeat rapid?

While you’re checking their tummy, feel their chest for their heartbeat. If it’s rapid, try and cool your baby down quickly with a cool bath or a cool, wet rag. 

Is your baby unresponsive or lethargic? 

Is she not responding to your touches like she normally does? She may be in a deep sleep, but she may also be overheated. Try to start cooling your baby off.

Is your baby’s skin red?

This should be considered with all the other questions as well as your baby’s natural skin coloring. His cheeks may be flushed if he’s overheating and especially if he’s warm to the touch. 

What should I do if my baby is overheated while sleeping?

First, you want to try and get their internal temperature down quickly. Run a cool bath or grab a wet rag and wipe her face and body down. Remove blankets and clothing. 

You may consider calling your doctor if you feel like your baby isn’t cooling down.

Make sure your baby is hydrated. If you’re a nursing mother, you should increase your intake of fluids to help your baby stay hydrated. Make sure that you’re keeping your baby hydrated throughout the day and not just before bed.

All of these ideas should help you make sure that your baby stays safe and asleep especially during those warm summer months.

Laurel Teuscher
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How To Plan A Baby Shower - The Ultimate Checklist

How To Plan A Baby Shower - The Ultimate Checklist

There are very few celebrations that are more exciting than a baby shower. If you are reading this post, chances are that you’re in charge of hosting a shower and need some help. As the host of a baby shower, you’ll want to make sure that every detail has been meticulously planned and stays true to the momma to be’s personal style and taste. 

When planning, you’ll need to make sure you consider her favorite colors, decor style and hobbies. If she already has a nursery set up and ready to go, you might also be able to pull some inspiration by walking through and taking notes of what’s included, so you can guarantee she’ll love her shower.

The first thing to remember when planning a successful baby shower, you have to stay organized from the very beginning and making sure you have enough time to thoroughly plan and make sure that everything comes to life. Take a minute to grab a notebook, an iPad or a journal and start making your checklist and taking notes about what you read in this post. Let’s jump in.

Baby Shower Checklist

Planning a baby shower can be stressful, from sending out invitations, buying or creating decor, to ordering the cake. Our step by step guide will help coach you through the baby shower planning process with ease. The rest of the post is broken out into a ten-week timeline. Don’t stress if some of the items spill over into other weeks or you need to shorten up the timeline, just make sure to pace yourself and keep yourself on track so you can have the best shot at pulling off the greatest shower ever!

9-10 Weeks Before The Baby Shower

Select a date and time - The very first thing you must do as a baby shower host is figuring out a day and time the event will be taking place. Find a few minutes to sit down with the guest of honor (or discuss on the phone) some days and times that work well for her.

Most baby showers are held when the expectant mom is about six to seven months pregnant. This ensures that she’s well into her pregnancy and things are going well and not big enough yet to be super uncomfortable. This time frame will also give her plenty of time to organize the gifts received, make a list of all outstanding items she needs before the baby arrives and get out thank you notes before she delivers.

Determine the guest list and budget - After you have a date and time, the next step is to figure out who should be attending the shower and how much you have to spend on the event. Take some time to discuss with the mother-to-be who should be attending in addition to getting contact information for each of them. Email addresses, home addresses, and cell phone numbers should be enough to effectively reach everyone.

Next, you should come up with the budget. Keep in mind that the budget should be enough to select a venue, food services and any gifts/favors that will be provided during the event.

Select a venue - After you have your baby shower budget in place, it’s now time to select a venue. Most, smaller baby showers happen in the home of the host, which is free. When this becomes problematic is when you have a group larger than 15 or so people. If this is the case, you’ll want to look at other venues like hotel conference rooms, or private dining rooms in a restaurant. One nice thing about using a non-home venue is that the setup, catering, and cleanup is typically provided by the staff, so it can take aa level of stress off of the host.

Choose a theme - Picking a baby shower theme can be kind of difficult, but keep in mind that the theme of the event needs to reflect the personality and interests of the momma to be. You should also keep in mind that the theme of the shower should reflect whether she is having a boy or a girl. Here is a pretty great resource providing almost 200 theme ideas if you’re struggling to get started.

5-6 Weeks Before The Baby Shower

Prepare and send invitations - You should plan on getting invitations into your guest hands no later than 5 weeks before the event. That way they have plenty of time to save the date, RSVP, shop for a gift and find help with kids (if necessary). If the shower is more casual, a text or email invitation is perfectly acceptable. If it’s more formal, you’ll want a physical invite. When selecting your invitations, make sure to choose a fun invitation that will give the guest a sneak peek into what the event is going to be all about.

Plan the menu and decor - After invitations, you’ll need to start spending time nailing down the menu and the decor. If you’re going to be purchasing decorations that are perishable, you might want to wait until you get closer to the event. In the case of flowers, you'll want to get those the day before.

To finalize the menu, make sure that you’re very conscious of the guest of honor’s tastes. If she’s to the point when she’s craving specific foods, make sure that you’re catering to her needs. You might also consider serving smaller portions to make it easier for guests to manage the different foods they might want to try.

Check on the gift registry - Take a few minutes to check in with the soon to be mom to get an update on her gift registry. You’ll want to make sure that it is locked down before guests start to receive their invitations so they can start shopping and buying gifts. You should probably drop a hint that one of our knot baby gowns should be on that registry.

4 Weeks Before The Baby Shower

Come up with an agenda - Four weeks left to go and now is the time to start putting together the agenda for the event. Agendas are important to keep the event on track and to make sure you’re able to get everything done that you planned. Most modern showers include games, gift opening, eating lots of food and drinking lots of drinks.

The most important thing to remember when organizing a baby shower is to have activities that create a fun flow that keeps guests entertained, excited and engaged. Start out by giving guests around 10-15 minutes to arrive and offer refreshments to those who are waiting for the rest of the party to arrive. Once everyone has arrived, you can start the activities. If you are looking for some great activity ideas, here’s a great post with 20 activity ideas that you might consider.

Order the baby shower cake or cupcakes - Now is the time to figure out if you’re going to have a cake, cupcakes, or both and get them ordered. Make sure that whatever you choose, that they fit the overall theme of the shower.

Order baby shower favors - Along the same lines as above, make sure to spend enough time to pick out shower favors/gifts that match the theme of the event.

Reserve party rental supplies if needed - If you’re going to be hosting the event at your home, you might need to reserve some party supplies. Some of the more common supplies are popcorn machines, snow cone machines, cotton candy machines, etc.

Assign someone to be the photographer - One of the easier things to do is to assign one of the attendees to be the dedicated photographer. If they have a professional camera that can take great photos, that’s a plus, but most cameras on phones these days are pretty impressive, so that will also work fine.

2 Weeks Before The Baby Shower

Follow up with any guests who haven’t RSVP’d - This one is pretty straightforward. A few weeks before the event, you’ll want to send out an email or text message following up with those who haven’t reserved a spot on the list.

Pick up shower favors - It’s always a good idea to try and pick up the shower favors at least a few weeks before the event. This is one of the things that you don’t want to come down to the wire since your guests are going to be leaving with these as a way to remember the baby shower.

Assign someone to pick up the mother-to-be - Along the same lines as assigning someone to be the photographer, you’ll want to assign someone to pick up the momma-to-be and bring her to the event. Remember, we want this to be stress-free and fun, so give her a ride!

Confirm event reservation - If you are going to be holding the event at a location, not in a home, you’ll want to make sure to call the event space at least two weeks before to confirm your reservation.

1 Week Before Before The Baby Shower

Shop for food - A week before the event is a great time to shop for food items that can be bought in advance and are not perishable.

Decide and delegate who will record gifts - Someone other than the host needs to be in charge of keeping a list of all of the gifts given at the event and who gave them so the momma doesn’t have to stress about it.

2-3 Days Before The Baby Shower

Finish any outstanding shopping - Take some time to finish shopping for items that are on the menu and stock up on serving supplies like utensils, napkins, cups, plates, etc.

Pick up food  - Make sure that all food is picked up 1-2 days before the event and that it is stored properly to ensure freshness.

Clean up around the house - If you are hosting at your home, you’ll want to make sure to reserve some time to clean up around the house. You might also consider hiring a home cleaning service to help you whip your house into shape.

1 Day Before The Baby Shower

Pick up the cake or any other desserts - As mentioned above, make sure they are stored properly to ensure freshness.

Set up the event space - It doesn’t matter if the event is in a home, backyard or event space, you’ll want to make sure to set up a day before to eliminate any stress the day of the event.

Day Of The Baby Shower

Designate a place for the gifts - Make a place where attendees will set their gifts so they aren’t lying all over the play.

Assemble food and drinks - Make sure that all of the food and drinks are set up and ready to go so guests can start snacking as soon as they arrive.

Enjoy yourselves - Take a minute to breathe, relax and enjoy yourselves. You’ve earned it!

Laurel Teuscher
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Diaper Bag Essentials For A New Mom - What To Pack In Your Diaper Bag

Diaper Bag Essentials For A New Mom - What To Pack In Your Diaper Bag

As a brand new mom, or soon to be a brand new mom, one of the questions you’re probably asking yourself is, what on earth do I put in my diaper bag? This task is almost as stressful as packing your hospital bag, isn’t it?  

It’s no secret that a well-packed, well-stocked diaper bag can be a huge lifesaver, but at the end of the day, what do you really need in there? I think we all know the basics, diapers, wipes, changing pad, etc. but there are so many other things that you’re probably not thinking about. In this post, I’ve broken the sections out as follows:

  1. Diaper Bag Essentials For Babies
  2. Diaper Bag Essentials For Moms
  3. Other Diaper Bag Essentials
  4. Diaper Bag Tips & Ideas
  5. Diaper Bag Brands

I hope that by the time you get to the end, you feel confident and ready to whip your diaper bag into shape… before baby gets here.

Diaper Bag Essentials For Baby

  • Diapers - Diapers are one of the most important things you need to pack in your diaper bag. A general rule of thumb is that you will need one diaper for every hour that you’ll be out and about. Plus a few extras, just in case there’s a blowout, or two, or three.
  • Wipes -  Wipes are also essential for a diaper bag. You should start by sticking 15-20 in a plastic baggie. Pro tip: Wipes are not only good for changing diapers, but for sticky hands and dirty surfaces.
  • Changing Pad - The beautiful thing about many modern diaper bags is that they come with a matching, reusable changing pads. You can also buy them separately or purchase disposable pads.
  • Extra Outfit - Packing extra baby clothes is a no brainer. It’s very easy for your baby to fill up their diaper with pee or have a blowout. One pair of clothes is vital. If you can fit another pair in, that would be ideal. Our knotted baby gowns are a perfect extra outfit to keep in your diaper bag. They are small and lightweight.
  • Pacifier - For babies old enough to take a pacifier, keeping a few of these on hand can be very helpful to soothe fussy babies.
  • Blanket - Blankets are one of the most versatile things you can pack in your diaper bag. You can use it to keep your baby warm, as a nursing cover, a burp cloth, shade, etc.
  • Bottle(s) of Formula/Breast Milk - If you are bottle feeding, keeping at least one bottle, maybe more of formula or breast milk will help you keep your baby’s feedings on schedule.
  • Diaper Rash Cream - Lastly, you’ll want to keep some diaper rash cream in your diaper bag. Many moms opt for travel size bottles because they take up less space.

Diaper Bag Essentials For Mom

  • Wallet - Many new moms forget that when they have babies, their purses turn into diaper bags. Making sure to move your wallet from your purse to your bag is critical for a new mom.
  • Keys - Along the same lines, make sure you move your home and car keys to your new diaper bag.
  • Snacks, Mints, or Gum - You should always have some snacks, minds or gum on hand for when you just need a little something.
  • Drink - One thing that a lot of new moms complain about is always being thirsty. You should also keep a bottle of water or a beverage of choice (Diet Coke) in your bag.
  • Reading Material -  If you ever find that you have a free moment, you might consider keeping some reading material in your bag. Some moms keep magazines, books, or kindles close by.
  • New Shirt - Similar to a change of clothes for baby, you’ll probably want to keep a clean shirt in your diaper bag in case of spit-up or an accident.
  • Nursing Cover - If you’re not planning on using the blanket you stashed away as a nursing cover, you might want to include one so you can comfortably breastfeed in public. 
  • Breast Pads - Let’s face it, if you’re breastfeeding, your boobs are gonna leak. Make sure to keep at least three sets of pads in your diaper bag at all times. You might want to keep more depending on if you leak more than the average mom.

Other Diaper Bag Essentials

  • Hand Sanitizer - You’ll quickly learn that changing a dirty diaper can happen at any time and in any place. Making sure to have a full, travel-sized bottle of hand sanitizer is a must for cleaning your hands when there’s no place to wash them.
  • Plastic or Wet Bags - These are great for storing soiled diapers (especially if you’re doing cloth diapers), wet/soiled clothes and dirty baby blankets.
  • First-aid Kit - This one might be a little overkill, but lots of moms keep a small first aid kit in their bags in case of an emergency. These include bandages, antibiotic cream, pain reliever and other easy to pack supplies.
  • Sunscreen - If you’re out and about on a very sunny day, it’s always a good idea to have some sunscreen on hand. Baby's skin can burn very easily, so making sure to apply every few hours is a must.
  • Tissues - When babies get colds, their noses will run and get very sore, very quickly. Make sure to pack some aloe-infused tissues that will be gentle on little noses.
  • Emergency Information - Make sure that you have the phone numbers of your doctors programmed into your phones and that you have your health insurance cards in your wallet. You might also consider creating and printing out a list of emergency contacts that you can put in your wallet or in a pocket of your diaper bag.

Diaper Bag Tips & Ideas

  • Waterproof Lining - Some diaper bags come with waterproof lining which, as you can imagine, makes life a little bit easier when things spill… and spill they will.
  • Compartments - Make sure to choose a diaper bag with multiple compartments. Having many compartments will help you keep all of your items organized and very easy to find.
  • Pack Items Together - Save time and find things more easily if you take some time to pack similar items together in a resealable bag.
  • Leak Prevention - Prevent leaks by packing medicine, snacks, and bottles in resealable plastic bags.
  • Two Diaper Bags - This is a popular mom hack, you might consider purchasing two diaper bags, a small one for quick trips and a bigger one for longer trips. Some moms even keep a diaper bag full of baby changing supplies in the car to make sure they never run out.
  • Look Outside of Traditional Bags - If you struggle to find a diaper bag, you might want to broaden your search to other bags that serve other purposes such as a tote bag or backpack. It’s important to remember that not all diaper bags will fit your taste and style, so keep your mind open.

Diaper Bag Brands

As mentioned above, there are lots of different diaper bag brands that fit different styles. Some of the more popular diaper bag brands are listed below. We plan on putting together a full write up on the different types of diaper bag brands highlighting pros and cons to help you in the search for the best bag for you.

I hope that this post has been helpful and you’ve been able to put together your own list of diaper bag essentials for your newborn. If you have any other ideas or tips, please feel free to comment below.

Laurel Teuscher
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Newborn Baby Must-Haves Items

Newborn Baby Must-Haves Items

As your delivery date nears, you’re probably running around, trying to make sure that everything is done and ready for baby to arrive. The nursery is set up and you are gathering all the necessary items to make sure that you’re ready for whatever happens with your baby. There seems to be a lot of essentials to get before your baby’s arrival. And pregnancy brain certainly doesn’t help. Don’t stress out: We’ve put together a list of all the things you need for your new baby.

Minimalist’s List

We start with the minimalist’s essentials. These are the things that you absolutely need for your new baby. Everything else is nice-to-have items, but these are the things you should absolutely make sure you have.

  • Clothing
  • Diapers
  • Swaddling blanket
  • Car seat
  • Crib or bassinet
  • Mattress pad and sheets
  • Baby carrier or sling
  • Baby bathing supplies (shampoo, soap, etc)

We all know that there will always be that overzealous mother-in-law or soon-to-be grandparents who won’t allow the new baby to be without all the new items. We’ll continue on with describing more specific items that can be purchase.

Baby Clothing Must-Haves

We’ve covered all the clothing that you need for your newborn in another blog post, but there are several essentials that you want to make sure you have. Here are the essentials you want to consider.

  • Onesies are critical to have. You can never have enough onesies.
  • Pajamas or sleepwear. Make sure to get a knotted baby gown (or two) to keep your baby snuggled during those longer sleeps at night.
  • Shirts and pants. Pants with feet are really good for those who don’t want to be chasing socks everywhere.
  • Sweaters or jackets. Especially if the weather is getting cooler during the time your baby arrives.
  • Newborn hats or hair bows. 

Baby Feeding Must-Haves

A baby spends a lot of time eating during the first few months of their life. Whether you choose to breastfeed or bottle-feed, there are some essentials that you need to keep on hand.

  • Bibs are essential. You’ll be grateful that you have plenty of these around. Or you could just admit that your baby’s clothes are going to need to be washed regularly. We recommend keeping bibs on hand.
  • Burp cloths are so helpful to have. They protect your clothes too!
  • Baby feeding pillow. We love the Boppy Pillow and Lounger. It fits comfortably around your waist and puts your baby in the perfect position to be fed (by you or a partner). 
  • Dishwasher basket to clean all of your supplies quickly.

For Breastfeeding 

  • There are so many options if you need a breast pump. We recommend getting the Philips Avent breast pump. It’s really comfortable to use and it’s lightweight so it travels well.  
  • Milk storage bags are essential if you’re going to be pumping. You can store the bags filled with breast milk. 
  • Nursing pads are something you should get if you’re worried about protecting your clothes as your breastfeeding. Pads can help soak up excess milk.
  • You may need nipple cream if your breasts become sore or dry from breastfeeding. Whatever you use, make sure that it’s safe for your baby to ingest.

For Bottle Feeding

  • Bottles and nipples are a no-brainer, but make sure you have plenty on hand. You will be surprised how quickly you’ll go through bottles.
  • A Bottle brush will help you clean the bottles all the way in the bottom. A dishwasher may not always get every nook of a bottle, but a brush can make sure that everything’s clean. 
  • If you’re not sure what baby formula to use, talk to your baby’s doctor. Make sure to mention any family allergies (especially to milk) so that the doctor can take that into consideration. 
  • Bottle warmer is something you will be grateful to have! Your baby loves warm milk and by using a bottle warmer you can ensure that it gets to the correct temperature. Some bottle warmers even come with an app to alert you when the bottle is ready.
  • Bottle sterilizer can help you make sure that you’re keeping your baby’s bottles clean. If your tap water is chlorinated, you don’t need to worry about this. If you don’t have chlorinated tap water, make sure you’re using a bottle sterilizer. 

Baby Bedding Must-Haves

You’ve probably worked through assembling the crib in the nursery. Now, you need to make sure you have all the bedding necessary to make sure your baby sleeps well

  • Crib mattress should be the right measurement — less than two fingers should fit between the mattress and crib. This prevents your baby from possibly getting trapped between the mattress and the crib.
  • A couple of crib sheet sets to make sure you have extra for when you need to do some laundry.
  • Blankets are always good to have. Depending on the temperature of your house or the time of year, you’ll want to try everything. 

Baby Nursery Must-Haves

You’ll spend a lot of time in the nursery, especially during the first few months. You’ll want to make sure it’s a comfortable place, not only for you but also for your baby. These essential items will provide you everything you need to survive in the nursery (minus food and water).

  • You want someplace to sit and that will help you lull your baby to sleep. A glider or rocking chair is the perfect furniture item. Make sure you find one that doesn’t squeak and that has a smooth gliding mechanism. You also want to make sure that it’s comfortable for you and your partner since you’ll both be using it from time to time. 
  • Baby monitor or video camera. With so many options these days, you want to pick the one that’s right for you. Most new parents love having a video camera baby monitor to be able to see what your baby is doing. It provides some comfort.
  • A humidifier will protect your baby from dry air. A baby’s skin is very sensitive so the humidifier can release moisture into the environment, especially during those winter months. Make sure that you’re cleaning your humidifier regularly to ensure that bacteria doesn’t build.
  • Dresser with changing pad or a diaper changing table. There’s no need to scramble on the floor to clear some space to change your baby’s diaper. Besides, your back is going to feel that up and down motion. Having a dresser or diaper changing table is a huge must-have.
  • A white noise machine is essential if you don’t have a humidifier. A white noise machine can drown out the ambient noises so you don’t have to tiptoe around the house after the baby has gone to sleep. 
  • Even if your baby isn’t ready to pick their own toys, you know that well-meaning grandmas or grandpas are going to start bringing over plenty of gifts. Having a toy basket or toy storage area is a way to keep your baby’s toys organize and out of the way. 
  • You may be surprised how much you love reading to your baby. A bookcase is a perfect piece of furniture to have in your nursery to keep all those books organized. 

Baby Diapering Must-Haves

You’re going to find that these are probably the most used item. You can choose to use regular diapers or cloth diapers, but make sure you have enough to last for plenty of time. You’ll also want a few other items to make sure you have everything you need.

  • Baby wipes are essential for keeping your baby clean. Make sure to check the ingredients. If you’re worried about when to use wipes, a good rule of thumb is once they’re a month old. In those first few weeks, you can use warm water and an ultra-soft paper towel or cloth. 
  • Diaper cream may not seem like it should be essential. But it is! Your baby wears a diaper all the time. Moisture can get trapped and that means that bacteria can get in and cause diaper rash. Diaper cream takes a preventative action so that your baby doesn’t have to deal with that irritation. 
  • You may think that diaper pail isn’t something that you need. Maybe a regular garbage can or just a bag will do. It won’t. It won’t prevent the smell from escaping. You need a diaper pail to just make it easier when you’re done with your diaper.

Baby Bath Must-Haves

Whether you give your baby a nightly bath as part of their bedtime routine, you need to have some items to make sure that you’re giving your baby a bath that will clean them and give them some proper skincare.

  • You need to select the right baby shampoo and body wash for your baby. There are plenty of options, but remember that your baby’s skin is much more sensitive so you need to select one that is fragrance-free and hypoallergenic.
  • Bath time should be a fun time. Make sure that baby has his or her own bathtub to relax. Make sure that just because they have a bathtub that you don’t leave them unattended. This is a good chance for some bonding is to play with your baby with the water. 
  • Soft washcloths are helpful as you try to clean your baby. With all their adorable rolls and wiggles, you’ll find it easier to use a washcloth to clean your baby. 
  • Hooded baby towels are perfect for when you pull your baby out of the tub. Quickly put the hood on and wrap him up tight before heading to his room for his diaper and pajamas. He’ll love that coziness he feels, especially after leaving a warm bath!
  • Don’t forget to apply baby lotion right after their bath. This habit acts as a moisturizer because the lotion locks the water that the skin has absorbed during the bath. I

That’s a huge list of essentials! Hopefully, you’re not scrambling to buy all of the items right before your baby arrives. Make sure to make baby registries or suggest any of these items to your family and friends to bring for your baby shower. 

Laurel Teuscher
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Bedtime Routine for Your New Baby

Bedtime Routine for Your New Baby

Sleep is important for your new baby. You know this because that’s probably how they’re spending most of their time — sleeping. But you want to make sure that not only are they getting sleep, but that they’re getting good quality sleep, especially at night. 

As your baby gets bigger, those bedtime routines actually have an impact on their wellbeing because it can mean that they’re getting good quality sleep. 

When Should You Start a Bedtime Routine for Your Baby?

A newborn baby isn’t going to follow a set routine or a sleep schedule. They sleep when they sleep. Make sure that they’re getting enough sleep. 

As you help them fall asleep, try to observe and notice cues of things that you do that help your baby relax and fall asleep. Is it music? Do you have a rocking motion? Or are they bundled up nice a warm? These are things that you can incorporate in a bedtime routine that are familiar to your baby and can help them fall asleep faster.

When your baby is about 6-8 weeks old, you can start to put together a bedtime routine. 

What is a Good Bedtime Routine for My Baby?

Every baby is different. There isn’t one right bedtime routine for your baby. It’s going to take some experimenting to find the right elements for a good bedtime routine for your baby. 

As I talked about before, you want to incorporate habits that you formed with helping your baby sleep during their first few weeks of life. You don’t need to incorporate everything. Good habits are ones that are easy to repeat and shouldn’t be demanding for you or anyone else to do. Especially as your baby gets older, the repetitive nature is what actually matters. Those repeated steps help cue your baby’s brain and body that it’s time to go to sleep. 

Remember, your bedtime routine can start 1 hour before your baby needs to go to sleep or 15 minutes. Consider some of these ideas to incorporate into your baby’s bedtime routine:

  • Give baby a bath
  • Put on a clean diaper and apply lotion
  • Dress in clean pajamas or a knotted gown
  • Swaddle baby in a blanket
  • Dim or darken the room
  • Nurse or feed your baby
  • Turn on ambient noise
  • Burp baby
  • Gently rock or snuggle

Before you put your baby in their crib, he or she should be very drowsy. Once you’ve put your baby in your crib, you can try and leave the room. 

How Do You Get a Baby Into a Sleep Routine?

This is the hardest part of the bedtime routine — knowing when to start implementing the sleep routine. Should you start doing everything at once? How do you know what time to start the routine? Here are a few ideas.

Notice Your Baby’s Sleep Tendencies.

As you start to fall into a pattern for night time, start taking note of when your baby goes to sleep for the longest stretch of the night. Jot a note on your phone or maintain a sleep log as your baby starts to develop patterns. Once you notice the pattern, plan on starting the bedtime routine 30 to 45 minutes before that time. Maybe your baby starts to go to sleep around 8:30 p.m. and will be asleep for a long stretch in the night. You’ll want to start the bedtime routine around 7:45 or 8 p.m.

Adopt Rituals Slowly.

Start with some rituals that you’ve already done for your baby when you’ve put them down. A bath. A favorite blanket. Try to be consistent so that these are always associated with going to bed. If you want to introduce a new ritual, only incorporate one new bedtime ritual at a time. Make sure that your baby is still going to sleep and waking up at about the same time before introducing another ritual. Changes can disrupt the routine so be conscious of that. 

Incorporate Routine During the Day.

If there’s a naptime during the day, trying to modify it to fit for naptime. Incorporate those sleep associations to help your baby fall asleep during the day. This will also help reinforce this routine for better periods of sleep at night.

Put Your Baby to Sleep in the Same Place.

Speaking of having consistency, try to put your baby down for naps and bedtime in the same place every time. While it might be tempting to put your baby in the car seat and drive around to run errands while he or she is asleep, you’re also training your baby to sleep in his or her car seat while the car is moving. You don’t want to have to manage that at night or for every nap. We know that it’s inevitable that your baby will fall asleep on a car ride or in their stroller, but try an 90/10 approach – 90% of the time baby should be sleeping in their bed. 

There Will be a Learning Curve.

Setting a bedtime routine requires a bit of trial and error. Sometimes it will work. Other times it won’t. As your baby gets bigger, you may have to remove some of the rituals because they no longer provide the same cue of bedtime. A bath that was once relaxing can turn into rowdy playtime as baby gets older. This is a process so don’t stress when you need to change things.

Master the Baby Drop-Off.

You will be so grateful that you did. What this means is to try to make sure your baby isn’t completely asleep when you lay her or him down in their bed. Try to get them to a calm, relaxed state that some call “drowsy by awake.” Your baby is probably starting to nod off a little but hasn’t gotten completely to the sleep stage. By putting your baby down at this point, you actually help train your baby to fall asleep without someone holding them. 

A bedtime routine isn’t just for your baby. It’s also something that you will be grateful for. Following a routine can help you prepare for your own bedtime but also give you the peace of mind that your baby is ready to go to sleep too. 

Laurel Teuscher
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20 Items to Pack In Your Hospital Bag for Baby

20 Items to Pack In Your Hospital Bag for Baby

You’re at 37 weeks pregnant and have been nesting like crazy. The nursery is ready and your partner has spent a whole weekend assembling the crib and the rocking chair. You’ve folded the clothes and hung everything in the closet. All you need is your baby to arrive.

In all that excitement, you shouldn’t forget that you need to pack your “go” bag for the hospital. This is your bag, with all your essential items, that you leave near your door so that when you’re ready to go to the hospital, you can grab it. It’s recommended that you pack this bag several weeks before your due date — just in case your baby makes an appearance early!

What should be on your essential item list for your hospital bag? We’re going to share the 20 items you definitely need (and will definitely want) when it’s go time!

1. Paperwork

This is probably the most important thing you can remember and something that people rarely talk about. Make sure you have the proper paperwork in your bag. This includes several items:

Insurance Information

Take your insurance cards and all of your important insurance documentation. When you are admitted to the hospital, they’re going to ask for the information, so you should have it on hand.

Pediatrician’s Contact Information

Another piece of information you’re going to be asked when admitted is for information on your pediatrician. Have their contact information because as soon as your baby is here, your pediatrician will be notified. Within 24 hours, your pediatrician will give your baby a routine check-up. Don’t let your tired pregnancy brain keep you from remembering this important information.

Birth Plan

Hopefully, you’ve taken some time to create a birth plan to document your desires for your labor and delivery. You may have brought this to your last appointment and shared it previously with your doctor, but it would be a good idea to bring a copy with you. Your doctor may not be on call or available for your delivery. Having a copy of your birth plan will make sure that everything about your labor and delivery is in line with your wishes.

For Baby

Yes, your baby needs to have a few things you for your baby. You’re going to get several things for free from the hospital — like diapers and wipes. Talk with your doctor before your delivery to make sure that there isn’t something you might need. Here are a few good ideas to bring along:

2. Receiving Blanket

baby in a receiving blanket

This is one of the most common gifts for new parents. Receiving blankets, also known as swaddlers, are thin blankets made from soft fabrics like cotton or flannel. The name comes from an old custom where a new baby would be wrapped in a blanket right after birth before giving the new baby to mom to “receive.” These blankets become useful after birth to keep them warm or give them a play area and more. 

3. Socks or Booties

Newborns don’t move around at all and that can cause their feet to get cold. While you may not think about it, your baby’s feet will be really sensitive to cold temperatures and can get frostbite easily. Keeping socks or booties nearby for when it gets cold is something you want to consider. They don’t take up too much space in your bag and your baby will appreciate warm feet.

4. Going Home Outfit

If all goes well, you’ll be heading home with your new baby 24 to 48 hours after you’ve delivered your baby. You want to make sure that you have a sweet little outfit for your new baby to wear on the ride home. Most people forget this essential item and then are scrambling to find something.

Bring a baby gown with you that you can knot at the bottom so you don’t have to worry or fumble with zippers or buttons. Just knot the bottom of the gown to keep their feet in and they’re going to be cozy.

5. Car seat

Yes, a car seat. You’re going to have to transport baby home somehow! Don’t forget to have the base all strapped in and ready to take baby home. Make sure that prior to your trip to the hospital that you’ve gone through and made sure that it’s properly installed. One of the most common reasons for a delay in taking baby home is the improper installation of the car seat. So double and triple check, and have your partner read the instructions while installing.

Do I Need Diapers or Wipes for the Hospital?

No! Lucky for you, the hospital has plenty of diapers and wipes for use during your stay. Many hospitals also gift parents with a whole supply of diapers and wipes for the first few days. Don’t worry about bringing your own — leave those at home. 

6. Extra Bag for All the Freebies

Since you’ll be getting gifts from the hospital or from visitors, you will want to pack a bag or two to help you carry all of the items out to the car in as few trips as possible. Make sure it’s a large, sturdy bag that can handle several items.

For You

Now you have been spending a lot of time preparing the bag for your baby and making sure that he or she has everything needed to make their first couple of days in the world pleasant. But don’t forget these items that you’ll need to pack in your bag. You’ll be in the hospital as well, so you’ll want to make sure that you have these items to make yourself comfortable.

7. Nightgown and Robe

woman wearing delivery nightgown and robe

After you give birth, you’ll want to sleep. You can stick with the hospital gown, but you’ll probably be more comfortable wearing a nightgown. If you plan to start breastfeeding your baby, make sure to select one that opens in the front to accommodate. A robe is also a great option to bring to cover up when you have visitors or when you have to walk to your bathroom. 

8. Slippers

Hospital tile floors can be cold. Have some slippers or sandals that you can easily slip on before walking to the bathroom. This will keep you comfortable without the surprise of icy tile floor waking you up!

9. Back Massager or Tennis Ball

tennis ball for a back massage

Contractions and delivery may cause you back pain. If you want something to help you ease those back pains or the tension you feel, pack a back massager or a tennis ball. Use them as needed when you feel like you need it. You may even want to keep it nearby once you return home! 

10. Pillow and Bath Towel

Maybe you’re particular about your pillow. That’s okay. Having something familiar to rest your head on can make you more comfortable. Pack your favorite pillow. Make sure to use a bright colored pillowcase to help you remember to take it with you once you leave. Hospital towels tend to be small and rough — they go through a lot of laundry. Consider packing a big soft towel for you to use once you can shower after the birth. You can wrap yourself in that towel and feel so much more yourself.

11. Toothbrush and Toothpaste

You’re going to be in the hospital for a couple of days. Clean teeth make all the difference when someone wants to freshen up. Make sure to pack your toothbrush and some toothpaste so that you can continue to enjoy good hygiene. Plus, you’ll want to at least have good breath for any visitors who come to visit you.

12. Chapstick or Lip Balm

You’re going to get chapped lips during labor. It’s not a sign of labor, but rather a result of labor. You will be breathing out of your mouth during labor so your lips get chapped. Make sure pack your favorite chapstick or lip balm to help remedy this. Your lips will thank you, especially when you start eating ice chips.

13. Moisturizer or Lotion

Especially in the winter, your hands will get cold and dry. Having your own familiar moisturizer or lotion on hand gives you a familiar scent to make you feel at home. Keep the lotion by your bed for easy access. 

14. Books, Music, Magazines or Movies

Delivery can be long and boring. Make sure you’ve got plenty of entertainment to keep your mind off your delivery. Whether you love books or movies or magazines, make sure you have plenty of those options on hand. Load up your iPad or other device with your favorite movies or TV shows. Download any videos from your favorite streaming software. You don’t know how reliable the wi-fi would be and having a copy on your device eliminates any buffering delays. 

15. Snacks

In one of your last visits before your due date, check with your doctor to find out if there are any restrictions on what you can eat or drink during labor. Consider lollipops as a way to keep moisture in your mouth. Also, hospital food is notoriously underwhelming. It may be comforting to have some familiar (and favorite) foods to eat. You will also want some snacks for your partner to help fuel them through the process as well.

16. Drinks

Depending on how long labor lasts, you may need an energy boost or something postpartum to help you stay awake. Instead of scrambling to find something that you want, make sure that you pack a couple of drinks that you particularly enjoy. You may consider adding a sports drink with electrolytes to keep you hydrated.

17. Cell Phone and Charger

You’ll want to capture those perfect moments after your baby has arrived. Most phones have fantastic cameras so instead of bringing a large camera, just bring your cell phone and a charger. You can then make sure to update family when your baby has arrived and you’re ready to share the good news.

18. Deodorant, Shampoo, Conditioner and Soap

You will want to shower after delivery, especially if you’re expecting family and friends to visit you at the hospital. Make sure you pack your favorite shampoo, conditioner, and soap to help yourself feel more like yourself. Don’t forget to pack your deodorant as well. 

19. Heavy-Duty Maternity Pads

heavy duty maternity pads

Let’s talk about after your delivery. It’s normal to experience lots of bleeding after birthday. Maternity pads are made especially for those who have had a baby. They’re extra long and thicker than regular pads. While the hospital may have some of these, you want to bring some of your own. You will need to change pads regularly to begin with — every couple of hours — until the flow decreases. Make sure you have several pairs of underwear that can accomodate these pads in your bag too. 

20. Going Home Outfit

Your baby needs a going home outfit, but you do as well! Make sure that you pack a clean set of maternity clothes because you still won’t be able to fit into your pre-pregnancy clothing. You may want to wait to buy a nursing bra until after the baby comes and your milk comes in so you can measure for your cup size. 

That list should supply you with everything that you and your baby will need for your stay in the hospital. 

Laurel Teuscher
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10 Christmas Gift Ideas For Babies 0-3 Months

10 Christmas Gift Ideas For Babies 0-3 Months

Christmas is such a fun time of year, especially when you’re buying Christmas gifts for kids and most importantly, babies. For most, it’s also time to pull out all of the stops… Baby’s first ornament? Yup! How about photo with Santa? Uh-huh! Fancy new Christmas day outfit? Absolutely! 

What about baby’s first Christmas gift? If you’re struggling to figure out what to buy your newborn for Christmas, fear not, we’ve done the hard work for you. Below is a great little round-up of 10 gifts your baby will be going gaga over.

Cute Holiday Colored Clothes

What mom or dad doesn’t want their new bundle of joy to be dressed up in holiday colors? During December, you’ll be hard-pressed to find a baby, not in holiday gear. Our knotted baby gowns come in three different colors, two of which are very great colors for the holidays. Our maroon and olive green gowns are a great gift for the festive newborn.

Developmental Play Mat

Baby Development Play Mat - Christmas Gift for Baby

Developmental play mats aren’t anything new. These great mats are designed by child development experts to give newborns and growing babies engaging activities to develop. This particular mat has five playful multi-sensory hanging toys and lots of loops to hang other toys high, low or on the mat.

Animated Stuffed Animals

Animated stuffed animals – Christmas Gifts for Baby

These animated stuffed animals are anything but boring. They flap their ears, play peek-a-boo and sings songs to keep your little one in awe. These Baby Gund animals are one of the best baby Christmas gifts of 2019.

Plush Security Blanket

Lamb Security Blanket - Christmas Gifts for Baby

If you are thinking about getting baby a stuffed animal, you might want to consider this cute little lamb security blanket. This super soft and comfy blanket will see your little one through the first few years of his/her life.

Wubbanub

Wubbanub - Christmas Presents for Baby

If your newborn is in love with their binky, a cute and fun gift to give them for Christmas is a WubbaNub. What makes these pacifiers different than the norm is that on the end of them is attached a cute stuffed animal. You can choose from lots of different types of animals including giraffes, dogs, unicorns, ducks, etc. The big bonus for you as a parent is that these are really hard to lose, so it’s a win-win for a Christmas gift this year.

Soothing Sleep Owl

Soothing Sleep Owl - Christmas Present for Baby

As you already know, a good night's sleep is one of the best gifts you can give a baby, and also yourself. Getting your baby to calm down and get back to sleep in the middle of the night can be much easier if you have the right tools. One of the tools we recommend is the Bubzi Co soothing sleep owl. This cute, plush owl plays ten different lullabies and has an optional night light that projects a soothing starry light show. So if you need the gift of sleep in your life, this is definitely a gift to add to the list.

Oball Shaker Rattle 

Oball Shaker Rattle - Christmas Gifts for Baby

One of the first gifts that parents usually purchase or get at a baby shower is a rattle. The Oball rattle will not only help baby develop the sense of sound with it’s rattling noise, but it also helps them learn how to grab onto things since the ends have really cool gripping balls on them.

Sassy Floor Mirror

Sassy Floor Mirrors - Baby Christmas Gift

Another tummy time gift that babies absolutely love is these Sassy Floor mirrors. Once your baby gets their eyes on this mirror, they will forget what they are doing and be mesmerized by their reflection. This toy was developed to help strengthen neck, shoulder and upper arm muscles and promote visual development.

Spiral Car Seat Activity Toy

Spiral Car Seat Activity Toy - Christmas Gifts for Baby

Baby is going to be spending a lot of time in their car seat for the first few months of their life. As they get older, you’ll want to give them something that can encourage them to use their hand and eye coordination. A spiral car seat toy wraps onto baby’s car seat handle and makes it easy for baby to reach, pull or squeeze the objects. This toy can also be wrapped around baby's crib for some naptime or night time entertainment.

Soft Baby Book

Soft Book for Baby - Christmas Present for Baby

I’m a big fan of books and this one is just perfect for baby. I believe that you’re never too young or too old for a good book. This soft baby book introduces baby to animals, but it has plenty of peek-a-boo surprises. It also has songs, melodies and sounds that it can play so the book grows with baby.

We hope that this list has given you at least a few good ideas. We hope you have a very Merry Christmas with your little one.

Laurel Teuscher
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What Should Babies Wear to Sleep?

What Should Babies Wear to Sleep?

It’s your first night home and you go to lay your baby down in their bassinet or crib for the first time and then you realize that you’re not sure what they should wear. Do you put on the too big pajamas you received during the last baby shower? Do you keep them in a onesie and swaddle him in a blanket? How are you going to change her diaper in the middle of the night?

Bedtime outfits for your baby shouldn’t be a mystery. It’s all about safety, temperature, and comfort – for both you and your baby! 

Safety

Newborns have very little control over their bodies and tend to have lots of reflexive movements. That means that she can move around and since her body is still growing, she needs lots of support and to just rest. 

There is also the risk of Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID) which is most likely to occur during the first four months of a baby’s life. The best thing you can do is dress your baby in clothing that isn’t loose and doesn’t have tops that could ride up and cover your baby’s face. She doesn’t know how to remove fabric from her face to keep her breathing. 

Our knotted gowns are made to not be loose on your baby. They’re all made from a stretchy rayon and spandex blend so that it fits comfortably on your newborn.

Also, make sure that your baby’s sleeping space is free of any blankets or accessories — even pillows, mattress toppers, crib bumpers, stuffed animals. Rest your baby on a firm crib mattress with one sheet. 

Temperature

Your baby’s body doesn’t yet know how to regulate changes in temperature. The room your baby is in should be between 68 and 72 degrees Fahrenheit. If it’s cooler than that, add a few layers. You don’t want to have a loose blanket wrapped around your baby since that could come undone and suffocate him. 

If it’s warmer than 75 degrees, consider bringing in fans or air conditioners to help keep your baby cool. If he’s wearing an Orchid knotted gown, you don’t have to worry about keep him tucked in. Knot the bottom of the gown so that his feet are snug and tucked in for the night. It will help his feet stay warm and cozy all through the night.

Comfort

Your baby may not remember the feel of her clothes, but for sure you will! Make sure you’re dressing your baby in something comfortable and soft. Itchy fabric may irritate your newborn baby and keep her awake when you really want her (and need her to sleep!) 

Baby Sleeping Gown

It’s not just about comfort for your baby. It’s also about comfort for you. When you’re looking at baby pajamas, you’re not thinking ahead to those middle-of-the-night feedings or diaper changes that await you. You don’t want to be trying to fumble with buttons and snaps when you’re half-awake and want to be back in bed. Luckily, your knotted gown makes it easy for you so you can get back to sleep as soon as you can.

Frequently Asked Questions

These guiding principles will help you as you pick out good outfits to dress your baby in during the first few months of their life. But you’re probably more worried about the more specific questions. 

Should a Newborn Wear a Hat to Sleep?

Your baby should not wear a hat to sleep. Hats are loose fabrics that can move around and potentially suffocate your child. It’s best to remove the hat and make sure that they’re swaddled to stay warm. 

You may be confused since the nurses in the hospital usually place a hat on your baby. This is to help them stay warm and acclimate to the colder world than they have been living in before their arrival. Also, there is always someone there to observe and prevent situations. Once you return home, you will find that the times that baby goes to sleep is when you also take a nap or are able to do some of the things around the house that you have been neglecting. 

You can give them a hat to wear if you are holding them while they sleep and your attention is on him. Or when you’re heading outside to take a trip, this is also a good time to have your baby wear a hat when they’re sleeping. 

Should a Baby Wear Socks to Bed?

Do you like to sleep with socks on? Your baby probably likes it too. Not because they’re so comfortable, but because your baby likes to be warm. Babies are extremely sensitive to temperature because their bodies aren’t able to regulate their own internal temperatures yet. 

You should gauge how the temperature in a room feels for you. Do you feel comfortable? Or are you rubbing your hands on your arm and reaching for a sweatshirt? If you’re cold, your baby is probably chilly as well. Some good advice is to dress your baby in one more layer than you are wearing

What Type of Baby Nightgowns are There?

You might be looking at all the options for baby nightgowns and wonder which is the best one. Truthfully, until your baby is 4-6 months old, you’re going to be up in the middle of the night for diaper changes. It’s important to consider that when selecting options for your baby’s pajamas.

Here is a quick summary of the different types of nightgowns for your baby to wear:

Knotted Baby Gown

baby knotted gown for sleeping

We’re big fans of the knotted baby gown because these nightgowns are perfect all year round. With long sleeves and soft material, your baby will be comfortable in the warmer months and the cooler months. You can purchase your own knotted baby gown here.

Sleep Sack

Ergobaby sleeping bag for baby

Essentially, a sleep sack or bag is a blanket that your baby wears. You put them in a onesie and then zip them in and you don’t have to worry about loose blankets that could suffocate your baby. Our personal favorite is Ergobaby which you can buy here.

Sleeper Gowns

baby sleeper gown

These gowns are different from knotted gowns because the gown is open at the bottom – there’s no way to knot the end. The bottom may have elastic, but it’s still open. You’ll need to put socks on your baby to prevent their feet from getting too cold. Our favorite is Simple Joys by Carter’s that you can purchase here.

Footed Baby Pajamas

footed baby pajamas

Do you remember rocking the footed pajamas as a kid? I do! Maybe you rock them now. But these pajamas are good options once your baby is a little older and especially if they’re prone to the cold. You don’t have to worry about them kicking off their socks in the middle of the night or only losing one (which is the worst!). The pajama is one piece. The only issue is during those late-night diaper changes, you’ll wish you have something a little more simple. So hold onto this pajama set until your baby is sleeping more through the night. There are plenty of options, but Leveret has some beautiful pajamas that you will definitely want to purchase here.

Your baby is going to be sleeping for up to 16 hours a day during the first few months. To help her get the best sleep possible so that you can get the rest you need, make sure you follow these guidelines to keep your baby safe and comfortable.

Laurel Teuscher
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What Clothes Should I Buy For a Newborn?

What Clothes Should I Buy For a Newborn?

One of the more common questions that new moms have is “what clothes should I buy for a newborn?”. Having a baby is exciting and you might be tempted to buy any and every outfit that you see, but keep in mind that babies grow fast… like really fast, so don’t overdo it. 

Before jumping in headfirst and spending a small fortune on clothes for your baby, here are a few things you should think about.

Laundry

How often are you planning on doing laundry? 

You might need more or fewer clothes for your baby if your laundry routine is different than others. If you plan on doing laundry once per week, you’ll want to double the clothing listed below. If you wash every day, you can cut the numbers in half.

Sizing

As mentioned above, new babies grow really fast. Most babies will outgrow newborn outfits within a few weeks to a month. You should also know that most newborn sizes cap out at around 8 lbs, so if you have a bigger baby, she might not even fit into newborn outfits.

When considering which clothes to buy, it’s recommended to pick out a few newborn items and then put most of your budget toward 0-3 month sizes. These outfits will fit babies up to 12-13 lbs.

Seasonal Wear

You’ll also need to consider when you are going to have your baby. If it is in the middle of summer, you might not need sweaters, sweatshirts or pants. You’ll probably want to substitute those things with summer outfits and vice versa if you are having her in the winter months.

These things said, here’s a pretty good guide on what type of clothing to buy for your baby.

2-4 Infant Gowns

Infant gowns are probably the best thing you can dress your baby in until their cord stump falls off. It’s the very best way to keep their cord stump clean and not irritated. These gowns also make it really easy to change diapers during the day and in the evening. Our knot baby gowns are a great option here.

4-8 Bodysuits or Onesies

Bodysuits and onesies are an easy, no-fuss outfit in the summer or a basic layer during the cold winter months. When shopping for these, make sure to buy the ones that have wide head openings and loose legs. This makes putting them on and taking them off of baby easy and seamless. Our favorite bodysuits are the good, old fashioned Gerber onesies. You can get them here for a pretty good price.

3-5 Pants

Really, babies don’t need to wear pants, but having a few on hand makes it really easy to pull over a onesie or bodysuit to keep baby’s legs warm when it starts to get cold outside, or when you’re blasting the A/C during the hot summer months. The Simple Joy pants by Carters are some of our faves. You can get them here.

4-8 Undershirts

Undershirts are very similar to a onesie, but the bottom half is missing. As mentioned above, make sure to look for the ones that have a wide head for the opening. Like above, we really like the Simple Joy side-snap shirts. You can get them here.

4-8 One-Piece Footie Pajamas

We grew up wearing one-piece footie pajamas and they are just as popular today as they were 30 years ago. In the summer months, you can go with a nice cotton material and in the winter, fleece is a great option. We really like the Burt’s Bees footie pajamas. You can get them here.

2-3 Blanket Sleepers

Blanket sleepers are definitely safer than traditional blankets at night time. Make sure to avoid anything with drawstrings. Our favorite blanket sleeper is the Halo Sleepsack, which you can buy here.

1-3 Seaters, Sweatshirts or Jackets

In the cooler months, you’re going to want to make sure to stock up on sweaters, sweatshirts or cute jackets. If you go with sweatshirts or sweaters, make sure they button or zip on the front. Babies hate when things are pulled over their heads, especially big, bulky items.

1-3 Rompers or Other Dress Up Outfits

If you’re one for getting your baby all dolled up each day, then you’re going to need a few cute rompers or other outfits. Some of our favorite rompers we’ve seen can be purchased at Rags.

5-7 Pairs of Socks

Most new parents don’t even realize that babies don’t need shoes until they start walking. This said, get some cute and comfortable socks that she can lounge in during the day and while sleeping at night. We’d recommend picking up a few packs at Target or Old Navy.

2-3 Hats

When shopping for hats, you should at least get your little one a broad-brimmed sun hat and a soft cap that goes over baby’s ears in the wintertime. You might also add in a fun ball cap if baby is a boy. If you’re into ball caps, you might check out Jack & Winn.

2-3 Swaddles

Swaddles aren’t really clothes, but many babies spent a ton of time in them. For the first few months after birth, babies really like being wrapped uptight, so you’ll find most newborns either wrapped up tight with a blanket or with a swaddle. If you’re looking for some super cute swaddles, you should check out Milkmaid Goods.

2-3 Lightweight Blankets

Small, lightweight blankets are always great to have around the house to wrap baby up with or to lay on the floor for your baby to lay on. Two or three is probably enough, but if your baby spits up a lot, you might want a few extra so you have enough if they get soiled quickly. For these, we’d also recommend heading over to Target to pick some up.

Mittens

Guess what, even in the summertime you are probably going to want to get some mittens for your baby. Mittens not only help keep baby’s hands warm, but they will also keep them from scratching themselves when their nails start to grow. Obviously, you won’t want to put on winter mittens in the summer, so get a nice pair of cotton mittens so you don’t cook their hands. You can get some really inexpensive ones here.

Bunting Bag or Fleece Suit

Winter babies need to stay warm when outside, so you’ll want to purchase bunting bag (this is like a sleeping bag) or a full-body suit that goes over baby’s clothes. JJ Cole has a really awesome Bunting bag that you’ll want to check out here.

Here are also some general tips to consider when looking at different clothing options:

Fabrics: Always lean toward soft, breathable fabrics like cotton. Fleece is a great choice for colder months. It’s also a good idea to avoid (or remove!) bulky and scratchy tags that could irritate your baby’s skin.

Fasteners: When shopping for clothes, make sure to look for fasteners that close easily. Nothing is more annoying in the middle of the night than not being able to put things back together and get back to bed. 

Prewash: It’s always a good idea to wash new clothes before your little one wears them. This will make sure that she doesn’t develop a minor rash or skin irritation. Baby's skin can be so sensitive for the first little bit, so do her a favor and wash everything.

So there you have it! Do you feel a little more prepared? You can do it! If you think we missed anything or have any other ideas or tips, please feel free to share in the comments below.

* Please note that some of these links are Amazon affiliate links and we make a small commission if you purchase the product.

Laurel Teuscher
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25 Awesome Baby Shower Gifts

Finding the perfect baby shower gift can be really tough, especially if you don’t want to go the traditional route and pick from a baby registry. If you are looking to give a gift that’s a little different and a little more unique than your traditional shower gifts, you’ve come to the right place. 

In this post, we will go through 25 pretty awesome gifts, 15 of them are specifically for baby and 10 of them are specifically for mom . . . Yes, mom needs her own gifts and she will appreciate and love them so very much. Let’s dive in!

Gifts for Baby

Knotted Baby Gowns

Knotted Baby Gown - Baby Shower Gift

Of course, we have to lead with our very own knotted gowns. They are absolutely perfect for newborn babies and make diaper changing during the day and night a breeze.

Sound/Noise Makers

Dohm White Noise Machine - Baby Shower Gift

White noise machines are a great way to help keep baby from hearing loud noises and promote deep, restful sleep. Our two recommendations for sound machines are the Dohm and Hatch Baby Rest.

Pregnancy/New Baby Journal

bump for joy pregnancy journal - baby shower gifts

We’ve heard that one of the best baby shower gifts is a journal that mom can keep her thoughts and feelings as she gets closer to delivery and after the baby comes. Our two recommendations for journals are Bump for Joy Guided Pregnancy Journal and Bump to Birthday: Pregnancy and First Year Journal.

Non-Contact Thermometer

 Easy @ Home Thermometer

Having a new baby can be stressful. Having a new baby come down with a fever can be even more stressful. There are so many different thermometers on the market, but for babies, moms are opting for non-contact thermometers. These make it super easy to take baby’s temperature without disturbing her. Our two favorite no contact thermometers for babies are the Easy@Home and DrKea.

Baby Sleeping Door Sign

Baby sleeping door sign – Baby Shower Gift Ideas

Have you ever seen how a new mom reacts when someone rings their doorbell or knocks on their door? If you haven’t you don’t want to. Nothing is worse than waking up a sleeping baby and feeling the wrath of mom. Baby sleeping door signs are a great gift and there are some pretty cool ones out there. Here are two of our favorite from Wood Worx Designs and Sass or Salt.

On-The-Go Changing Mat

On the Go Baby Changing Mat - Baby Shower Gift Ideas

Most moms who have babies are typically on the go. Running errands, visiting family and friends and taking/picking up their other kids from school, sporting events and other activities can be a full-time job. Portable changing mats are perfect for changing dirty diapers wherever mom might be. Our two favorite changing mats are the Baby Loovi and Lil Fox.

Portable Diaper Changing Station

Portable Diaper Changing Station - Baby Shower Gift Ideas

Along the same lines as above, having a portable diaper changing station that houses diapers, creams, wipes, etc. is a great gift for new moms on the go. Here are the two we like the most: the Skip Hop and the Comfy Cubs.

Gentle Nail Trimmer

We’ve never met a mom who likes trimming baby’s nails. It’s way too easy to clip them too short and hurt your little one. A great alternative to nail clippers is electric nail trimmers/files. Our only recommendation is the Little Martins nail trimmer — It’s the best around and you’ll be grateful to have it!

Pacifier Clips

When baby loses her binky, it can get really stressful trying to find it. Pacifier clips make it easy to locate binkies no matter where mom is at or doing. Two of our favorite binky clips are the Baby Goal and the Mushie.

Dockatot

Babies have their cribs to sleep in, but when mom wants them close to wherever they are, there aren’t many options. Dockatot makes it easy to co-sleep with baby, but also provides a safe place for baby to lounge while working out, making dinner, etc. You can check out Dockatot here.

Shopping Cart Baby Hammock

Have you ever tried to take a baby to the grocery store? It’s hard to get all of your food and safely transport your baby throughout the store. Binxy Baby sells a revolutionary product that makes it safe and easy to shop with your baby. You can check out their hammocks here.

Nose Frida

Boogers are gross. You know what’s even more gross, moldy boogers stuck in those traditional, light blue booger suckers. Enter, the Nose Frida. With just a little suck of a tube, the boogers come right out, with serious force. Mommas all over say they love this as a baby shower gift. You can buy the Nose Frida here

Solly Baby Wrap

New moms absolutely love the functionality and practicality of a baby carrier. You could go with a traditional carrier like the Ergobaby or you could go with a stylish wrap. The Solly Baby Wrap is the perfect carrier for the on-the-go mom and makes it easy to get things done while baby is awake or asleep. You can buy the Solly wrap on their website.

Milk Snob Nursing Cover

If the mom to be is going to be a breastfeeding machine, she’s going to need a really fun, trendy nursing cover. The really cool thing about these covers is that they also double as car seat covers! These covers come in a variety of covers for the modern momma and are pretty reasonably priced for what you get. You can buy them here.

Halo SleepSack

One of the scarier things a mom and dad will experience is wondering if your baby is sleeping through the night. You hear horror stories about babies being suffocated by a pillow or baby blanket. A sleep sack is a wearable baby blanket and makes it so nothing else needs to be in baby’s crib while sleeping. You can purchase a sleepsack here.

Gifts for Mommy

Nesting Olive Gown or Robe

After giving birth, new moms love nothing more than lounging in comfortable clothes. Two of the most comfortable items they’d love to get their hands on is a Nesting Olive gown (they have several variations) and their new robe. You can buy them on their website here.

Spa Day

In addition to being comfortable, new moms want to feel pretty. One of the easiest ways to do this is to give them a day at the spa. We can’t give you any recommendations since there are so many amazing spas throughout the country, but this is always a winner as a baby shower gift.

Meal Delivery Service

We’ve talked to many new moms who say one of the most thoughtful gifts they’ve received is a meal delivery service or pre-packaged meals. This gift makes it incredibly easy to continue to feed their family great meals while spending enough time taking care of their new baby. Home Chef and Blue Apron are two really great options.

Lush Bath Bombs

We’ve never met momma who doesn’t enjoy a nice long bath. To make bathing even more enjoyable for new moms, give her a bag of bath bombs from Lush. There are quite a few scents that promote a calming and relaxing mood. “The Comforter” is probably our favorite. You can buy them at one of their stores or on their website.

Made by Mary Custom Necklaces

Most women love getting jewelry as gifts. Moms especially love getting jewelry that represents their children, old and new. One really neat gift to give an expecting mother is a customized necklace from Made By Mary. You can select from different types of chains and pendants, which can be customized with initials or words. You can order on their website, but know that these pieces are hand made, so they do take about a week or so to ship, so make sure you order way before the baby shower.

Bamboobies “Boob Ease” Nursing Balm

New moms can suffer from chafed and cracked nipples for the first few weeks of nursing. Ask any new mom and they can attest to how painful this can be. Babboobies “boob ease” nursing balm will keep mom's nipples feeling soft supple. You can buy Boob Ease balm on their website.

Bamboobies Nursing Pads

In addition to nursing balm, Bamboobies makes a variety of nursing pads for the breastfeeding mother. Our favorite has to be their reusable and washable pads, which are fantastic for the “green” mother. Their pads are super soft and very comfortable. You can buy them here.

Coffee Subscription

One thing we can all agree on is that new moms don’t get a lot of sleep. Newborns are a ton of work, so it isn’t any surprise that they are tired all day until baby is sleeping through the night. One very thoughtful gift for new moms is a coffee subscription. Yes, you read that right, you can have amazing coffee sent right to her house each month. Two of our favorite services are Atlas Coffee Club and Trade Coffee.

Cleaning Service

Along the same lines as not sleeping, there typically isn’t a lot of time during the day to take care of the home. It’s not uncommon to visit a new mom and her baby and see piles of laundry, dishes in the sink and things all over the floor. Another great gift idea is to give mom the gift of a clean house. There are so many cleaning services all across the country, so we won’t list any recommendations here.

Gift Cards

One of the greatest things new moms can receive is gift cards. New moms feel weird, some don’t think they look pretty, etc. New clothes, pedicures, manicures, massages, etc. are great ways to help mom feel and look like a million bucks.

If you're running low on ideas for your next baby shower, be sure to consider these less traditional ideas to help the mom-to-be (and baby!) feel celebrated.

* Please note that some of these links are Amazon affiliate links and we make a small commission if you purchase the product.

Laurel Teuscher
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