New Mom Must Haves – Round 2
Oh how life has changed since I offered up my first round of new mom must haves. Looking back, I can’t believe I was even with it enough to write a post two weeks in. I’m pretty sure I was delirious. Now I am actually getting some sleep, getting dressed in real clothes and getting some serious personality from our little guy. Three months make a big, big difference. So, here are some items that helped us make it through the first three months (keeping in mind this is just what works for us and who knows what might work for your current or future baby).
We figured out a few sleeping things that worked well for our little guy in his first three months and eventually got him to have consistent long stretches at night. At the top of the list is our microfleece swaddle. This was one of the first baby gifts we received and it has been incredible. Once Ike got too strong for his Aden + Anais blankets (he started breaking loose around 8 weeks), we promptly switched over to this Kiddopotamus SwaddleMe blanket, which velcros and creates the perfect little
baby straight jacket cozy sleeping cocoon. We wrapped the kid up whenever sleep was in order, whether it was nap time or night time.
Just this week I let him sleep unswaddled in a fleece sleep sack for the first time. He had started waking up in the middle of the night and just looked uncomfortable. Now that his startle reflex (moro reflex, to be technical) is gone, he doesn’t wake himself up with his arms and the swaddle isn’t as necessary. So, it looks like we might say goodbye to the swaddle, assuming things continue to go well!
After several strategies, we finally got our little guy settled into his crib. We propped the crib up on some books so that the bed is at an angle and we put some rolled up towels under the fitted sheet to help him feel secure. The addition of this little turtle night light completed the look. It doesn’t get hot and it is re-chargable, so it can live in the crib all night long and then get charged up during the day.
And our biggest sleep must-have right now is our AngelCare monitor. I know some people have strong opinions about these motion sensor monitors, and not all are favorable, but it works for us. If you’re not already familiar with this product, it is a baby monitor that can function as a plain sound monitor, or as a motion sensor and sound monitor. A small pad that goes under the mattress can detect motion, including breathing. When no motion is detected for 15 seconds, a warning beep goes off, then a full alarm sounds at 20 seconds.
Okay, the number one feeding must-have for me is my Medela pump. This is especially critical now that I am back at work, but it was also great when we were traveling or having guests at our house. It works quickly and does exactly what I need it to do. So far, it has been worth the expense. Lansinoh milk storage bags have been working perfectly for me, and I stow a Sharpie in the tote bag so I can always label the bags. The pump includes a little cold storage bag and ice pack so that I don’t have to store my milk in the refrigerator at work. No need for anyone else to see that!
Oh, and this Munchkin dishwasher bin helps wrangle all the small bottle parts, and, as a bonus, it also holds wine bottle stoppers perfectly!
We’re still holding strong on our BumGenius cloth diapering choice and there are no major updates in that area. My big diapering must-have is this Skip Hop travel changing mat, which folds up nicely even when holding wipes and diapers. It could even be mistaken for a clutch if you looked real quick (okay, maybe not, but you never know). It is perfect when I don’t want to carry the whole diaper bag around since the zippered outside pocket can hold pacifier wipes and other necessities.
We received a fun little crib toy from my aunt this winter (it has a mirror, lights up and sings songs). Ike loved it so much that I decided he was ready for an activity gym/play mat. He now spends about two hours total on this Fisher Price Luv U Zoo mat each day (not all at once, of course). He loves playing and looking at the flashing lights. My nephew has the Fisher Price Rainforest version and I actually like it better. I would buy that one if I had to do it all again.
And the other toys that are necessary these days are the ones that can clip on to the car seat handle. Ike generally loves riding in the car, but he doesn’t really like getting strapped in. If a crying fit happens while buckling, I just pull the handle up and make sure the toy is in his view and he is set to go. You can see it on the side of his car seat in this photo, alongside his Nuk pacifier holder (which I love).
And I’m sorry that I have to do this to you, but can you just look how my little boy has grown? Here he is coming home from the hospital in the same car seat and the same hat. Notice where his head is in relation to the car seat logo (and how differently the hat fits)!
The final must-have has been our Flip video camera. It is super easy to use and I love that it charges on your computer (it has a USB thing that pops out) and I don’t have to have another charging device! We live far away from all of our family, so it has been great to shoot and share some video. Never mind how great it will be to share a video like this with Ike when he is older.
Now that I’ve shared gratuitous photos and video of my son, I think I’m all done with my first-three-month must-haves. Feel free to chime in with your own thoughts and recommendations. Oh, and I’ll take questions, too!