Thursday, September 11, 2014

Infant Must-Haves! (Newborn - 6 Months)

White Noise
I personally don't own a white noise machine, but I have an app on my iPod called "Sleep" (Red Hammer Software) which features many sounds, including white noise. Rain, thunder, crickets, chimes, name it. Even a fog horn! We use the "fan" sound religiously every single night. I've found I actually can't fall asleep myself without it! I have it plugged into my iHome on the dresser next to my bed.

Gripe Water
Oh. My. God. Lifesaver. Especially if you have a gassy or colicky baby. The particular one I have is called "Colic Calm", but I've heard great things about "Mommy's Bliss" and "Little Tummies" as well. It has all natural ingredients, so it can be administered often.

Baby Nail Clippers
These are super sharp and just the right size to clip those little baby nails. 

"Soothie" Pacifiers
They aren't the prettiest things in the world, I'll admit, but I am a huge fan of these. The shape is perfect, because of it's natural shape and the prevention of nipple confusion. I also like that they are one single piece, so there's no chance that the nipple can detach from the base of the pacifier. The fact that it's a single piece, also makes them much easier to boil and sanitize.

Portable Changing Station
The particular one I have is by SafeFit, but they all work just about the same. I particularly like this one, because it has a little spot to put a roll of diaper disposal bags, which are great to have when you're on the go and need to throw away a smelly diaper. It has two mesh pockets to store diapers and wipes, or even a change of clothes. It has an adjustable strap with a buckle, which allows you to carry it outside of the diaper bag.

"Huggies" Portable Wipe Dispenser
I discovered this at Walmart - I like it SO much better than plastic containers, because they don't let any air through, so the wipes stay fresh a lot longer. And it's refillable, so you don't have to keep buying small packs that fit in the diaper bag.

Boppy or Nursing Pillow
This is a must, especially if you're breastfeeding. It helps me sit in a more comfortable position while nursing and is also great for baby's to do tummy time on or sit in! 

Vincent loves his bouncer so much. He would sleep in it every night if I let him! The one we have is by "Bright Stars" and has a removable bar with a couple of toys that spin. There is a little vibration box at the bottom, but we never use it and I've never even gotten batteries for it. 

We have the "My Little Snuggabear" swing. I love it, because you can turn it in three different directions, so it swings back and forth or side to side. It also reclines into sort of a cradle position for sleeping. There is a little mirror and spinning mobile on the top, which Vince LOVES to stare at! It plays volume adjustable (surprisingly not annoying) daytime and nighttime appropriate music or forest sounds at the push of a button. The music and mobile turn themselves off automatically after about 20 minutes. The real seller is that you can PLUG IT IN so you aren't wasting batteries. But batteries are an option, in case there is no outlet available. 

Activity Gym
These come in all shapes and sizes and are made by several different brands. The one we have is by "Bright Stars" and was handed down by a friend. You can hang all sorts of toys from it and it's a great way to keep a baby entertained, while encouraging them to reach. My son also likes to do tummy time on it and reach for the toys that way, or sit in front of it and hold onto the bars.

Foam Floor Mat
If you have hardwood or tile floors, I HIGHLY recommend purchasing one of these! We've got tile, and let me just say, Vincent did tummy time one time on the floor without it and it ended in crying. I purchased this one on Walmart's online site and we love it. Vince has bonked his head several times on it and not a single tear was shed! And once your baby grows out of needing that protection, it can be taken apart and made into little blocks! Here is Vincent sitting on it and his activity gym is in the background:

Wrist Rattles
Vincent really loves noise, so he enjoys the sound of his wrist rattles. They are too big to be on his wrists now, so I put them around his legs. I can tell he likes the sound when he kicks his legs!

SwaddleMe or Kiddopotomus Blankets
A lot of people don't like these, but I personally prefer them over swaddling blankets! Vince is a squirmer and no matter how well I swaddle him in a receiving blanket, he always manages to get out of it, which wakes him up. He sleeps the most sound when I am able to swaddle his arms down in one of these. I recommend having about 3 handy, in case of blowouts.

Some people wouldn't justify spending 25 bucks on a swaddle and I was almost one of those people. I purchased it anyway and I regretted not buying one sooner! This thing is beyond awesome and it is impossible to escape from. It has a little snap at the top, which you close first, then zip it up. There are two zippers, which allows you to change a diaper or buckle baby in a swing, without having to take it off. They come in loads of different colors, designs and sizes! 

I purchased this once Vincent started rolling onto his tummy and I needed to transition him out of the swaddle. It is basically a swaddle with arms and legs. It prevents him from rubbing or scratching his face, all while allowing him to roll over safely and move his arms. 

Hooded Towels
These suckers are great! It keeps the baby's head warm, while you're able to wrap the rest of the baby's body up in the towel. They're also super soft on baby's sensitive skin.

Pack of Cloth Diapers
Although I don't cloth diaper, these things make EXCELLENT burp cloths! They are inexpensive and come in large packs, so you don't have to worry about running out and doing an emergency load of laundry. They are big enough to soak up a lot and I honestly have no worries about them getting dirty or stained since they're just plain white!

Vincent is a face scratcher. He will put his hands up on either side of his face and just drag his nails makes me cringe! I clip his nails as short as I can, but he still manages to scratch himself. (Which would bring me to the next item) You could use socks too, but I am definitely a fan of the mittens.

Baby Carrier
I have the Infantino Mei Tai and I love it. I recommend getting a carrier that cuts off right under the knees, since it is a lot better for the baby's hips. I wear Vince when I go to the grocery store, cook and clean. It really helps me get things done when he is fussy or wants to be held!

Breastmilk Storage Bags
If you're breastfeeding, these are great to have handy. I'd recommend to any breastfeeding mother to build up a supply for the freezer, just in case.

Mesh Feeders
These also encourage self-feeding and allow baby to chew on foods and develop a taste for them, without risk of choking. 

"Munchkin" Popsicle Makers
These are awesome for so many reasons! They are small and perfect for little hands and self-feeding. They also seem to really help my son with teething. You can make all sorts of popsicles with these; anything from breast milk to baby food!

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