Nine months may feel like a long time, but there’s a lot to do when prepping for your baby’s arrival. Some expectant mothers buy their newborn essentials early on to avoid shopping when they’re heavily pregnant, while others wait until the last minute. Some are even caught out by an early delivery. Whether you’re super organised or doing a last-minute dash, this list will help you find everything you need to welcome your newborn
Whether you choose the disposables or the reusable cloth kind, nappies are must-haves for the first 2-3 years of a baby’s life. Remember to pack some in your hospital bag and have a few different sizes waiting at home – you never know how big your baby will be. You can buy disposable nappies from most supermarkets and cloth nappies can be found online at The Green Nursery.
You’ll need lots of baby clothes that are comfy and practical. Essential items include onesies with wide head openings, undersuits, pyjamas, a baby sleeping bag, jumpers or cardigans, socks and booties, hats, no-scratch mittens and a fleece suit for colder weather.
Your baby will need somewhere to sleep, such as a cot, cradle or Moses basket. This should have a flat, firm mattress but no pillow. Washable mattress pads and multiple fitted sheets are a must for dealing with vomit and spit-up – both of which are common in the early days. You should avoid using loose blankets, as these can pose a suffocation risk.
Whether you breast or bottle feed your infant, there are some essentials you can’t get by without. One is a breast pump to help manage your supply, another is nipple cream to soothe your breasts in the early days. You will also need plenty of burp cloths or muslins. If you’re nursing, it’s a good idea to keep milk storage bags for the fridge and freezer and invest in a nursing pillow. If you plan to bottle feed, you will need 10+ bottles, a bottle brush, formula and sterilising equipment. When your baby begins weaning at around 6 months old, you will also need a high chair, spoons, bowls and plates.
You don’t need much in the way of nursery furniture – as long as there’s somewhere comfortable for the baby to sleep and a mat for playing on. However, you may also decide on a changing unit where you can keep nappies, wipes and ointments, as well as a rocking chair for late-night feeds. You’ll also need somewhere to keep the baby’s clothes and a toy basket. A comfortable infant chair is also a good idea to keep your baby entertained while you shower or do jobs around the house.
You will need a stroller or infant carrier for walks, as well as a rear-facing infant car seat. Bear in mind that if you’re driving home, the maternity unit won’t allow you to leave without checking your car seat is safe and that your baby is strapped in correctly. After that, it is up to you to learn baby car seat safety.
Your baby should bathe in a baby bathtub for the first few weeks, though they will transition to a bath seat in the family bath later. You’ll need a few hooded soft towels, a baby hairbrush, baby soap and some soft washcloths and sponges.
There you have it – your definitive newborn checklist. Plenty of new parents choose to buy other items such as special clothes to wear home from the hospital, dummies and comforters, but all your child needs in those early days is you and a few basic essentials.
*this is a collaborative post*