The baby area in stores is a place of tiny outfits, adorable miniature sized items, and about four versions of one item to be found. Because, variety makes shopping more fun and personal – or completely overwhelming. For our own babies, we also enjoyed strolling through the aisles exclaiming over the mini-me fashions, designing the nursery, taking care to pick the best car seat to safely take home our little squish. But there is one thing I noticed about the baby section, and that is how completely lost I was at deciding which type of what do you need! With an aisle of formula that stretches the whole side, another full of diaper choices, and another still of random items that all claim to be a necessity for baby, how do you choose?
For a friend’s Baby Shower, I excitedly made the walk into my local Walmart’s baby section. A woman on a mission for the perfect Shower gift. I knew they were planning on bottle feeding, and as a semi-practical person decided to get them formula to grow their stash a little. All practical thinking flew out of my head the moment I walked into the formula aisle. An aisle I have casually wandered down before on my way to other items, but now was taking my first real look at. I froze… How are you supposed to choose from the fifty plus varieties on the shelf? After a panicked couple of minutes, I ended up running out of the aisle and opting for a gift card instead. The thought counts, right? So to help you new and soon to be mamas, or even those of you searching for the ultimate Baby Shower gift, this list is for you.
Wipes. You cannot have enough baby wipes, because they will be used all the time and do so much more than just wipe those cute baby bottoms. Use wipes for cleaning up massive poopsplosions that will happen more than you want to think about, for wiping the boogers that are smeared across their face, and to clean up the spit up on the floor or yourself or them. Wipes are a mom’s lifesaver, so toss a pack into your Shower gift and stock up mamas.
Diapers in all sizes. Many families will purchase the newborn and first size or two of diapers for their homes. Estimate that you will use 1-6 packages of newborn diapers, depending on the size of your baby. But definitely stock up on diapers in all sizes throughout pregnancy when they are on sale so you won’t have to make the trip for more when baby arrives. Plus, you’re saving money which is a bonus!
Cloth diapers are also a great option. They stop plenty of poopsplosions, and fit from birth to about 30 + pounds. The options are endless, super adorable, and can be as affordable as you like. There is a learning curve, but also plenty of local community groups.
The Baby First-Aid Kit. Mainly because this has the set of nail clippers and thermometer in it, you can purchase one from the stores pre-packaged or create your own and toss it into a cute basket for a shower gift. Inner Ear thermometers work well and are more accurate, and nail clippers are a must for those fast growing baby raptor claws. Chances are at some point your little one will get their first fever, and it’s best to be prepared so you may also want to have a bottle of Pediatric Tylenol on hand as well.
Washcloths. I want to say you will need fifty washcloths, and that is just an estimate. Like the wipes you will also go through these faster than you can say “laundry day”. So stock up, because otherwise you will be doing the wash every two days.
Car Seat Canopy. A magical baby item that straps onto the bucket car seat to protect your little squish from wind and cold, or to keep it dark for sleepy time. They also can come in adorable prints.
The Baby Swing. A lot of moms swear by their swings, and they help soothe many fussy and gassy babies to sleep. Because of their slightly upright position when seated, babies who suffer from gas and colic are more comfortable sleeping in one. Sleeping and happy baby means more sleep for mama, a chance to get some housework done, or even allow you to put your feet up and catch up on your favourite show/book.
Board Books. You can never have enough books, whether board or hardcover ones for their big-kid collection. Board books are great because you can let them play with them and not have pages torn out, and they are short enough for them to not lose interest. Adding storytime into bedtime routine even from birth is great for bonding while also developing language and early literacy skills.
Formula. If you are formula feeding baby, it can add up quickly. Stock up the shelves with formula, and keep an eye on sales. Some babies react or don’t like certain formula brands, so you may have to shop around with different types. Ask mamas who use it what works for them and what doesn’t.
Pacifiers. For the babies who are using pacifiers, you will need a stash of them. Suckies easily get lost, tossed, and sucked into the black abyss of the bedroom at bedtime. Sometimes in our home I wonder if we have a black hole where all of our pacifiers have gone into. Even with a soother clip, we still manage to lose them.
Stroller or Babywearing Carrier. Both are amazing options with a wide selection that will fit your family’s needs. You can read two momstown mama’s opinions on why one or the other was their go-to parenting secret weapon here: http://central-alberta.momstown.ca/parenting-baby-pregnancy-family-life/two-moms-baby-essentials-babywearing-strollers
Special thanks to Walmart Canada for sponsoring our Baby Basics program! Walmart is your one stop shop for all of your baby needs, online and in-store (Did you know that walmart.ca offers free shipping, anywhere, anytime, with no minimum purchase requirements…really they do! This is a huge value, often you pay more for shipping on an item than the actually amount you spent! ).
Our next Every Little Steps Baby Basics Program will be on February 10th!