A few months back, I shared my must have baby essentials for your first month with your new baby. I got a lot of great feedback from that post and a quite a few of you asked for a more detailed list to help first time parents figure out what they should put on their baby registry to help them prepare for their bundle of joy. Since I know that I was pretty overwhelmed when it came time to do our registry, I agreed that this post would be helpful to you parents to be.
When you start planning your registry, it’s easy to get overwhelmed….Jason + I learned that fast. There are so many new types of products you think you need to buy, that it’s tough to know where to begin. For us, since our little Sienna arrived 5 1/2 weeks early, we didn’t have a chance to get everything that was recommended to us. Looking back, it may have been better that our shopping wasn’t done when Sienna arrived because our need to get all of our shopping done much more quickly forced us to focus and just get what we really needed. When we compare our original registry list of what we thought we needed so badly with the products we bought and actually use each day, it’s clear that there are a lot of items that sales people may make you feel that you need that just aren’t necessary.
So, here is what we used the first 5 months and what I would recommend new moms put on their registry. Of course all babies are different, but this is what worked for us, so I hope it’s helpful for all you new mamas-to-be! Oh, and one service we definitely recommend signing up for if you aren’t a member yet is Amazon Prime! Free 2 day shipping is perfect for diapers, wipes, clothes, anything you find you need. You’ll learn quickly that those shopping trips you used to take get so much harder with a newborn!
I tried to put everything in a few basic categories to help make planning your registry a bit more organized and to save you from the overwhelming feelings we had!
crib // We love our Soho Crib from Serena & Lily. It’s a perfect modern design. We wanted to make sure we had an organic mattress for the crib and a few different sheets. I recommend three fitted sheets since you’ll want to have a back up or two when doing laundry. We have sheets we love from The Land of Nod as well as Serena & Lily.
moses basket // We used this Moses Basket for the first 3 months, while Sienna slept in our room. We love that this was easy to carry from room to room. We also used it in our office , so we could get some work done and watch her sleep at the same time.
glider // We love our Hayes Glider. We choose this glider because it is large enough for both Jason and I. We saw some chairs that would fit me, but didn’t look big enough for Jason. I love that we were able to pick the fabric and trim to match the color palette of our nursery. As for use, I use it everyday to read to Sienna and whenever she’s a bit fussy and needs to be rocked to sleep. I appreciate the comfy glider most during late night feedings!
swaddle blankets // We love the swaddle blankets from aden + anais. We bought a pack of four and use them all the time. Perfect for swaddling the first few months and now we use them as blankets. I love that they’re soft and airy for warm nights too.
sleep sack swaddle // We picked up two of these sleep sack swaddles to make nighttime swaddling easier. They’re perfect if you haven’t quite mastered the swaddle or want the option of swaddling your little one with her hands out (or in). We have two, so if one is in the wash we have another to use. Sienna still uses these to sleep at night.
white noise // I kept hearing how important it was to have a white noise maker, but didn’t understand really why until Sienna was here. We used the adorable sleep sheep as well as this white noise app for your iPhone. Both were lifesavers those first few months!
baby monitor // There are lots of baby monitors you can buy for around $200, but we found the Best Baby Monitor app works amazingly well – and it’s only $3.99! I have it installed on my iPhone, iPad and computer. If you have two iOS devices or an iOS device and an Apple computer, just select one device to be the child unit, and one to be the parent unit. As long as they’re on the same wifi network in your house or apartment, setup up is simple and you can watch and hear everything going on in the crib. It’s also great if you have to travel, since you will have your iPhone and iPad anyway, so you don’t have to bring anything extra!
swing // This was definitely our lifesaver the first few months! Sienna would take the best naps in her swing. We heard great things about the Fisher-Price My Little SnugaBunny Cradle ‘n Swing and highly recommend it to new parents!
security blankets // We bought two different blankets for Sienna when she was around 4 months. This Jellycat Bunny Blanket is the softest blanket and has a cute bunny attached. We also bought since Sienna these muslin blankets since she just loves the material from her swaddle blankets.
pacifiers // It’s really tough to say which will be best for your little one, since it all comes down to her personal preference. We didn’t give Sienna a pacifier until she was 3 months, but she now loves these pacifiers from Nuk. We’ve tried a few other types, but she definitely prefers her Nuks.
breast pump // Definitely not the most exciting thing to register for but this pump by Medela is another one of my must haves for new moms. I would also recommend this hands free pump bra, so you can get things done while pumping.
bottles // Since we were buying the pump by Medela, we bought some additional bottles by Medela too (which also come with storing bags – super handy!). We wanted to give Sienna a bottle of pumped milk along with her feedings so she would get used to a bottle – and so Jason could help me out with all those crazy feedings in the beginning. You need to hand wash all the bottles, so you’ll need a stylish drying rack and we love this grass drying rack by Boon as well as this flower accessory for smaller parts you don’t want to lose.
nursing // I know some people recommend waiting to get your nursing bras after your baby arrives, since your breasts may be larger, but honestly those first 2 weeks are pretty crazy and you won’t want to go out and shop. I would pick some out in advance (I know I wish I had). I have a few bras, this one is my favorite. I would also recommend a box or two of disposable nursing pads – so important for those first two months when you might leak. I also recommend a great robe or two for the first month at home. I pretty much lived in my robes – just so much easier with all those feedings in the beginning. I love Plum Pretty Sugar and Love Ophelia.
Nursing coverup – I wish I had found this sooner!! Most nursing cover ups look like you are wearing an apron and, honestly, I just felt weird wearing them. Then I found this Dria Cover – it looks like a poncho and comes in stripes – and it is super soft. LOVE it. Also doubles as a blanket which is another plus.
burp clothes // So handy for everyday use and love the cute patterns on these.
On the Go
Stroller // The big stroller debate! This was probably the one item we talked about the most. Jason loved it, he says it was like shopping for a new car (must be a guy thing). There are SO many brands and types to choose from….and we tested quite a few! We decided on the Bugaboo Cameleon 3. And can I just say that we LOVE it. One of my most favorite baby items. The Cameleon 3 comes with a bassinet (above, bottom right photo) you can use to let your little one nap around the house or when you’re out to eat those first few months. I think it’s the most stylish – and well built – stroller out there, so I couldn’t be happier. Jason loves that it has shocks for a smooth ride (even on the uneven sidewalks of Venice), big tires for off-road (perfect for the beach or hikes) and packs up easily for our trips in the car. I love pushing Sienna for rides in this stroller that is so well designed + stylish that it even lets you change out the canopy, which is fun for a change of pace. The black and white canopy (above, top photo) is from a collaboration with Andy Warhol. That is another thing I love about the company – they pair up with other artists/designers for fun projects. Love supporting brands I love, so we cannot recommend our Bugaboo enough. First time parents, be sure to do your homework before buying your stroller, you’ll be spending quite a bit of time using it….we joke that our Bugaboo is with us so much, it’s like the 4th member of our family. For us, we found that having a good stroller just makes everything we do with our daughter easier and love that we’ve heard this stroller will last years, so we’ll be able to use it down the road for another little one! :)
Car seat // My biggest priority here was safety and this Chicco KeyFit 30 Car Seat gets some of the best reviews. Sienna loves it so much that she takes lots of naps in it even when we’re not in the car! It fits with our Bugaboo stroller using an adapter. Regardless of which stroller and car seat you get, a car seat adapter is super handy. It allows you to take your little one in and out of the stroller without waking them from a peaceful nap.
Carrier // We tried a few wraps, but Sienna wasn’t loving them and they are so tricky to put on. Then we got the Baby Bjorn Miracle Carrier and it is amazing! My back doesn’t hurt at all after carrying her and Sienna loves that she can look around at everything while we walk. Your baby should face you for the first 3 months, but then they can face out, which I love. Note that not all carriers let the baby face out.
Diaper Bag // This was one of the things Jason picked out while I was in the hospital, but I think he did a great job! We have the Skip Hop Messenger Bag in gray. I love it’s simple design and it’s not too girly so Jason doesn’t mind carry it. :)
Activity Gym // Sienna loves this Treetop Activity Gym. She starting using it a few weeks and now uses it everyday morning. She loves the animals and the mirror on the apple – she makes the cutest faces at herself! :)
Bouncer // This bouncer matches the swing we got and it is perfect for Sienna to sit and play with her rattles or teething rings.
Jumperoo // We bought one of these a few weeks ago at the recommendation of a few friends and Sienna loves to jump! We also noticed it is really helping her sit up better and keeps her occupied if we need to get some work done. :)
Bumbo // These chairs are great to help babies get used to sitting upright. Sienna was not a fan of it at first, but now loves to sit in it and watch me do yoga or cook dinner.
Rattles + Teething Rings // We bought a few rattles for Sienna and these are her three favorites: this carrot, this wood rattle, and this classic rattle. Sienna also loves her Sophie the Giraffe Teether.
Bath + Diapers
changing table // We wanted a dresser that could double as a changing table, so we went with this simple dresser and added this changing block on top. I think Land of Nod has the cutest changing pad covers! We have this gold polka dot cover. We also bought some disposable covers which we used a lot those first few months after it seemed like we were washing the changing pad cover everyday!
diapers + wipes // Our favorite diapers are the diapers from The Honest Company. I love the super cute designs and the fact that they are better for the environment. We love their wipes also as well as their shampoo and lotion. Such a great company. We also rotate with Pampers Swaddlers diapers which work really well too.
diaper pail // So important! We love our Dekor plus diaper pail – it’s got a simple white design and does a great job of keeping the smell out.
baby tub // My sister recommended this whale baby tub which we got and Sienna loves it. It’s cute and makes bath time fun!
towels + wash clothes // There are so many cute hooded towels! We got a few as gifts but love the towels by aden + anais which come with a baby washcloth (which is so much softer than a regular wash cloth!). We also love using these natural sponges.
There are so many cute clothes you can buy – especially for little girls! We found a lot of the gifts we received were for 0-3 months and we really needed some newborn items and preemie since she was so tiny the first few weeks. Since you won’t know if your baby will be a preemie, I don’t recommend buying preemie in advance (but if you do end up giving birth early, Amazon Prime is so helpful!), but do recommend some newborn clothes. The first month Sienna wore mostly bodysuits and hats. Now that she is a bit older, we love putting her in rompers and dresses (although with dresses she loves to suck on the dress, so rompers are really are go tos!)
We’ve done most of our shopping for Sienna online and LOVE Baby Gap. So many cute (and on trend) things, the fabric is super soft and they usually have a sale every other week! For the first few months, I would recommend (and this may vary depending on time of year): 5-7 bodysuits, 4-6 footed one-pieces, 3-4 leggings, 2-3 hats (we also loved the hat they give you at the hospital), and 4-5 pairs of socks. A few other places we love to shop for Sienna include Mini Boden, the Little Bundles collection from Old Navy and Target for cute bodysuits. We also bought some cute shoes for Sienna but she hasn’t worn any yet – they are more for display in her nursery and hopefully she’ll wear them soon. Love her gold moccasins from Freshly Picked and fringe booties from Minnetonka
other small (but important) things
nosefrida snot sucker // so many people recommended this to us and we were skeptical, but after trying to use the blue pump so many late nights and it not working, we ordered a nosefrida and I have to say, I see what the big deal is! Make sure you have one :)
happiest baby on the block DVD // I mentioned this before, but we really learned a lot from this DVD. Much faster than reading the book and you can both watch it together
So, I hope this list is helpful to other mamas-to-be out there! I’ve loved sharing this journey with you all! If anyone has anything else to add to my list that they think would be helpful, please leave a comment, I’d love to hear other recommendations! If anyone has a high chair to recommend, would love to hear your thoughts on those as we are currently researching which to get. :)
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