Hey, guess what! It turns out every baby is actually different. Go figure. Several things that worked for Julia aren’t needed for Madilyn (see ya later, yoga ball), so I have different products that we’re using now and loving. Consider this a follow up to my other post called 10 Newborn Must-Haves.
While having an additional child under your belt is slightly easier since you know what you’re doing, you still need to figure out the new baby’s personality, likes, and dislikes. Different strokes for different folks, ya know?
Here are 10 more newborn must-haves:
I love this thing. It has a small footprint compared to other rockers out there, it’s quiet, and it puts her to sleep almost instantly. Actually, when nothing else is on in the house (and if both girls are magically asleep at the same time), I sometimes just watch it move back and forth, back and forth, back and forth…and then the next thing I know, I’m waking up from a delicious nap. It works for moms and babies. Win/win. (Rockaroo in Mulit Plush, $179)
2. Play Mat
This baby loves to move and stretch. She started rolling over right after she turned two months, and by three months she was rolling over both ways. She also does this army crawl thing and gets to the other side of the mat in no time at all. I love being able to put her down in a safe area for her to do her tummy time. Julia wasn’t terribly interested in all the toys that hang down from it, but Madilyn adores everything and actually plays with them. Ours is an older version of this one since baby number two got the hand-me-down, but both girls have loved looking at the animals, and the extra items that come with it are great. (Bright Starts Sunny Safari Baby Play Place, $100 – keep an eye on this, because it was about $30 cheaper the last time I checked)
You’ve heard me mention this wrap before, but here’s my official “I love you” brag. It’s lovely, so comfortable, and she’s just snug as a bug in it. I wore Madilyn a lot as a newborn, but now that she can be worn in it with her legs out, I love it even more. The colors are divine, the material is so soft, and it’s lightweight, which helps us both stay cool. There are some times when I have this overwhelming desire to hold her close to me, but she’s a wiggly baby, so I pop her in my wrap and…BAM…instant cuddles. And seriously, nothing beats those lovely warm baby snuggles. (Solly Baby Wrap, $65—but they often have sales, so keep an eye on their Instagram account!)
Okay, I technically have a diaper bag on the other list, but I truly adore this bag, so I really needed to mention it again. It’s fabulous and I think I’d love it even if I didn’t have a baby. It’s just a really great bag! If you want to hear more about it, you can read my review here.
5. Breastfeeding Supplements
I was really worried about my supply in those early days, so I made some awesome “boobie bites” with brewer’s yeast ($13) and snacked on those bad boys during the endless cluster feeding nights. I also put some in my oatmeal and even in smoothies. I also used the Motherlove More Milk Special Blend ($25) three times a day, and could tell when I had an increase in my supply. I’ve since tapered off on using them since my supply is holding steady, but I still have them on hand for the days that I don’t drink enough water or if I’m extra stressed. (Here’s a post with five tips to boost your milk supply.)
6. Diaper Genie
Apparently people either love or hate these things. We fall into the love department over here, because anything that a) keeps the stink away and b) means I have to take less trips out to the big trash can is a keeper in my book. You’ll hear it time and time again that breastfed baby’s poop doesn’t stink, but they’re lying. It does stink. Sure, it’s not as strong as formula fed babies, but it still smells…especially if it’s sitting in an open trash can for more than a day. We’ve had our Diaper Genie for more than two years and it’s still working just fine. (Diaper Genie, $30)
In our old home we had a really large sink, so with very careful hands (with wash cloths over them for “grip”), we’d give Julia a bath. Then, as she got older, we transitioned to the infant tub. The sinks in this house are on the tiny side, and even though we still have the infant tub, it just didn’t seem all that comfy to me, plus I didn’t want to be bending over our bathtub to reach her. This lovely device is awesome and I kinda wish they made a grown-up version. Maddie actually loves her baths and she looks adorable when she sits in it for bath time. (Blooming Bath Baby Bath in Hot Pink, $47)
We swaddled Julia for quite awhile, but gave up early on with the wrap swaddle for Maddie. It wasn’t worth all the constant reswaddling in the middle of the night. You know what is good in the middle of the night? Sleep! This thing is awesome, because it zips right up SO THEY CAN’T GET THEIR ARMS OUT. Genius. Serious genius. (Woombie, $28)
This was our big splurge item for baby number two and it was worth every single penny. The actual brand name of it is called the “Best Chair,” and it’s totally true. I’ll sing this chair’s praises until the sun goes down, but the number one factor is that it’s extremely comfortable. This particular chair is also super quiet when the recliner leg goes up and down (which is awesome if you have a sleeping baby in your arms), and it’s large enough to fit both girls and myself on it. Obviously you don’t have to get this chair, but I highly recommend a comfortable glider or rocker where you can put your feet up. (Best Chair Storytime Series Irvington in Ash, $500—but you can use a 20% off coupon from Buy Buy Baby)
I know most moms probably won’t admit this, but I occasionally don’t want to wear my baby, and sometimes she doesn’t want to be on her playmat, and sometimes I have a million other things I need to do around the house. I sometimes need my personal space (i.e. don’t want a baby all up on me), but she also doesn’t want to be on the ground (can’t blame her for that one), so what’s a mom to do? Enter: the bouncer. This baby must-have travels from room to room some days. It’s in the kitchen so I can cook, it sits outside my shower so I can clean myself up from all of her spit up, and it goes outside with us so she can get some fresh air while her sister plays with her water tower. Did I mention I picked ours up at a yard sale for five bucks? Not all baby gear has to break the bank! (Bright Starts Playful Pinwheel Bouncer, $22)