I know many of my friends are becoming mothers and more than once I’ve been asked for a list of things that are really nice to have to welcome home a baby. We welcomed our guy home on a budget and didn’t have much room for the fancy extras, which means I hope my list is generally affordable and practical. It’s also great for traveling, busy, working mamas! I’m all about portable and travel friendly!
So here it goes, an affordable, practical list of things that will help you welcome your bundle (or bundles!) home!
The items are in no particular order! We loved them all!
First and foremost, you’ll need to get Amazon Family (with a 30-Day Free Trial). You can start your baby registry from here which has awesome completion discount benefits, so load up your registry with anything and everything you’ll possibly need (meaning all the things on this list) and if you don’t get them as gifts, buy them yourselves with awesome discounts! PS. The diaper discounts are worth it alone. We almost exclusively buy our diapers from Amazon.
Fisher-Price Newborn Rock ‘n Play Well for the little people, its simply amazing. Babies will sleep forever in this thing – we used ours for naps frequently. So worth it and great for traveling or having the baby nap anywhere at a friends house, etc. It’s recommended babies sleep on a flat firm surface, so for longer rests, cribs are still the go to for safe sleep practices.
Graco Pack N Play (or portable crib) whatever one you like. I think one that has the higher level for when they are small enough is really handy, you don’t have to set your tiny babe all the way to the bottom. I think we’ve bought this one three times (us, parents, and parents, hah!)
Bassinet – any kind will do. We frequently used the one that came with our pack and play (the top level). But if you have the choice, I heard wonderful things about the Halo, and more great feedback about the Arm’s Reach Bedside Bassinet . Both can be used as a way to keep your baby close to your bed while having the appropriate separation. This is not a frugal choice, but may be a good investment if you plan on siblings.
aden + anais Silky Soft Swaddle (so good for swaddling!) The bamboo ones are so soft and amazing although a bit pricer than the regular muslin. The blankets are light and compact for traveling. We keep one in the car for snuggling overtop of the carseat to this day. You will use these well beyond the swaddling days!
All things Aden+Anais, including their Bamboo Burp Bib the stuff is so good.
Burt’s Bees Baby 100% Natural Multipurpose Ointment, this stuff is magical for some reason. I would also highly recommend the Burt’s Bees Baby Bee 100% Natural Diaper Rash Ointment too. They are some of my favorite “baby bee” products!
SwaddleMe Original Swaddle and HALO SleepSack Cotton Swaddle We went with summer infant swaddle pods and HALO sleep sacks. They have sleep sacks that grow with your little one, so I highly recommend putting one of every size on your registry. They are perfect for cozy sleeping all year round!
Boon Grass – MUST have, I seriously just love this stuff. The flower to hold nipples are nice too. I still use mine today and we don’t wash bottles anymore. I love throwing his spoons and forks on it to dry. It’s a game changer. If you have decent counter space you can consider buying the Boon LawnBoon Lawn (which is a bit bigger), or the windowsill version called Boon Patch!
OXO Tot Bottle Brush with Nipple Cleaner and Stand We have many versions of this. I have the OXO Tot On-the-Go Travel Drying Rack with Bottle Brush, which is awesome, especially if you are pumping and need to wash bottles or pump parts on the go! I liked this brush the best by far, and to freshen it up, you can put it through the dishwasher!
You’ll need a high chair. We liked the Fisher-Price Space Saver High Chair. We liked that it was lightweight. It definitely did the job. We also bought a few of the type that hook on to your table or countertop for our parents and traveling to various cabins, etc! We bought the Inglesina Fast Table Chair and really like it! It also comes with a dining tray for easy clean up!
All things pacifiers, and hope your little person loves pacifiers because they are amazing! The Soothie Pacifiers are awesome and great when their little because you can put your pinky finger in the pacifier. I also really liked the MAM Glow in the Dark Night Orthodontic Pacifier, its cute to see them light up at night and they have MAM sizes that grow with your little person, even 18+ month sizes! I also recommend Pacifier Wipes for constant and recurring activity of dropping the precious pacifier in nasty places, and a Wubbanub because they are so cute and the babies love them!
Boba Baby Wrap Seriously so nice to snuggle and keep the baby warm, especially in the winter, you can use them when the babies are real little too. It’s a perfect way to keep your baby close or practice skin to skin while moving around the house.
Ergobaby Four Position 360 Baby Carrier. Once my kid outgrew the Boba… (I was carrying him for way too long in the stretch wrap, he was sagging and probably uncomfortable), but anyway, once they get too heavy and big, it’s time to transition to a sturdier carrier. They can also use these as infants once you get the Ergobaby infant insert. I found baby carrying to be an awesome way to bond with my baby while traveling, shopping, or really doing anything in and out of the house. I love it and still carry my almost two year old in the Ergo 360. I will soon have to upgrade to a larger toddler carrier!
Baby monitor. We got the Levana Ayden and like it. Our house is so small we barely use it because we can hear ever stir and chirp that comes from the nursery. They are always changing, but I was a bit scared of getting a monitor that was on WIFI, because I heard monitors are easily hacked. It may be nice to have one that has a camera that moves since they are always two inches outside of the screen viewing area it seems!
White noise Sound Machine. We have a portable one for in the car too (On-The-Go Sound Machine), which we use frequently and could just throw close to the bassinet if we were traveling. You’ll want to invest in rechargeable batteries to fuel the portable one. Finally, if you really want a fancy noise machine for yourself to drown your husbands snoring, we love the LectroFan white noise machine.
NoseFrida the Snotsucker Nasal Aspirator – Gross, but a MUST HAVE. You can also throw a few extra Nosefrida Filters on your registry as a gift idea! I didn’t change mine nearly enough, but I survived. Also Boogie Wipes for runny noses, another splurge but they smell amazing and don’t fight the act of nose wiping so much!
Plenty of burp rags, we really like the Burt’s Bees Baby Organic Bee Essentials Burp Cloths. They are so multi-purpose, and I think I used the same type of burp rags as a kid, which felt cool.
Thermometer, nail clippers, nail files soft brush for their head (cradle cap). The choices here are endless and cheap, so go with your gut!
Stroller and carseat, which I’m sure you’ve already though of. They are all decent. The travel systems are pretty slick when they are little. We started off as a Graco family and have stayed that way. We did a Graco travel system featuring the Graco SnugRide Click Connect Infant Car Seat and then I bough a few of these travel strollers (Graco Snugrider Elite Stroller and Car Seat Carrier) which are super awesome to toss in the back of your car. They also don’t get musty because there’s no fabric! Since graduating from the travel system, we have upgraded to a big carseat (Graco 4ever All-in-One Convertible Car Seat) that our little guy will legit use until he’s able to drive himself. We also have the Graco Extend2Fit , because it allows our long legged kid to stay rear facing as long as possible. The Extend to Fit is a great choice because the weight limits for rear facing seem to be the largest on the market right now! Psssst. If you haven’t heard, keep your kids rear facing as long as they can, and remember they don’t know any better! 🙂
– MOM Must Haves –
…most revolve around boobs, sorry men…
Bamboobies Super-soft Washable Nursing Pads. They have overnight ones (blue) and regular daytime heart shaped ones. I seriously loved these things, they are amazing. One of my go to gifts for new moms!
Simple Wishes Hands-Free Breastpump Bra (the best selling one on amazon is perfect) – a must for pumping. Another great gift. Awkward to buy for yourself, but ultimately will change your life and multitasking capabilities! You’re also super covered while pumping, so its much more private than holding the flanges yourself. I didn’t mind if people saw me pump because everything is tucked in this awesome bra!
Extra flanges for the meddle pump (Medela Personal Fit) (so you don’t have to wash them every 5 minutes), but wait until you know the correct size, the lactation person will fit you. The normal ones are 21, but you may need a different size.
Earth Mama Angel Baby Natural Stretch Oil (so good for bursting belly while pregnant). I love all their products and think the little Mama-to-be organic gift set is the perfect introductory box for new moms. I highly recommend the Earth Mama Angel Baby Non GMO Natural Nipple Butter, people rave about this over Lanolin.
Breast Milk Bags I would buy NUK or Lansinoh; the Medela bags are generally small and leak upon freezing.
My Brest Friend Breastfeeding Pillow – Boppy pillows are terrible for positioning new babies to feed, this pillow is a rockstar and will help tremendously in the beginning. SO good. Boppy Positioner are better for tummy time and learning to sit, so it can’t hurt to have them around!
Medela Breastmilk Cooler Set This is so handy. You can also get an extra ice pack insert so you always have one cold and ready to go for the day! I loved this, and it comes with a few extra bottles. We liked storing our bottles the fridge in this Medela storage system so you new which ones were new and which bottles needed to be warmed up first!
Breast feeding tank tops, the best ones I have found are at target: Basics Women’s Felicity Slimming Nursing Cami, all the other ones are baggy and hard to fit under t-shirts.
Those are some of the essential/favorite items that I used over the past year and a half! I am sure there are many wonderful items that I’m missing. If I’m missing an amazing item, leave it in the comments and I would love to add it! I will periodically update as I recall my favorite pieces! Good luck welcoming your beautiful, joyful bundle in to this world. The sleep gets better I promise! 🙂