Before I say anything, I want to let you know that the links in this post are affiliate links, but I am not sponsored by any of the products. I just genuinely found these items useful (even essential), when caring for my little man during his newborn days! Thank you for your support!
Little man was born during one of the coldest Pennsylvania winters, so blankets were essential! Even if you live in one of the warmer states, you are still going to want, and need, some cute blankets! These Aden + Anais blankets are the best! I know they are pretty pricey, but they are definitely worth it! And look at the cute design; perfect for either gender! If the price is just too high for you (completely understandable), consider the muslin blankets instead!
Even though the blankets were the perfect size for swaddling, my little man choose to wiggle his arms free every chance he got! I should have seen the writing on the wall; he still won’t stop moving! Once he wiggled free, the blanket would loosen, and usually fall off. Of course little man would then get cold, so we needed to try something else. Enter sleepsacks!
First we tried the sleepsack with velcro, and I thought, “Perfect! There’s no way he’ll be able to wiggle out of these!” Well, I was wrong! Little man still managed to get his little arms out! So we switched to the ones without the velcro because I knew there was nothing we could do to keep his arms swaddled! I did worry about his arms getting cold, but when it was really cold, I put him in the sleepsack, and then swaddled a blanket around his lower half. It seemed to keep him warm. As a new mom, I was constantly checking, and he never felt cold.
Little did I know that keeping my little man warm was just the start of my reasons to worry while he was sleeping! Having a newborn in the winter sucks! As if I didn’t already have enough to worry about! So, as I mentioned earlier, our winter was really cold! When I registered for gifts for my baby shower, I kept seeing that you should buy a cool mist humidifier. And even though I read how it could help reduce the risk of SIDS, I thought, “but our house has a humidifier, do I really need one for our room?” Turns out, YES! A few weeks after little man was born, the temperature dropped into the negatives (and that was before the wind chill). Our house humidifier ran constantly, but it just couldn’t keep up, and little man ended up very congested. In my defense, I didn’t know it was going to get that cold!! But nevertheless, it did, and we were quickly running to the store to buy one. This is the one we bought, and it worked great!
Although the humidifier helped, little man was still congested. When he started making some weird noises while asleep, we took him to the doctor. Everything checked out okay, but we came home with the suggestions of getting the NoseFrida and saline nose drops. The NoseFrida seems gross, but it worked really well. Unfortunately, little man absolutely hated it, so we limited our use of it. However, it was still definitely worth the purchase. He also hated the nose drops, but they are really easy to administer, and they are good to have on hand.
Now, you will remember that I have now had to worry about SIDS, the cold, and congestion while little man was sleeping. You would think that would cover it all, but you would be wrong! Cue reflux. At six weeks, little man started screaming all day. We took him back to the doctor who officially diagnosed him with reflux. It took awhile to get it under control, and I felt horrible! Two things really helped us though! The first were Dr. Brown’s bottles. These bottles really helped reduce my little man’s spit up by controlling/stopping the air that often gets sucked into the bottle nipple as your baby drinks. I really liked the glass version of the bottles, but a plastic version is also available.
The second thing that really helped was a swing. Little man’s doctor suggested that we try having him sleep on a slight angle. I tried angling his bassinet, but he moved around so much that it didn’t work (he turned himself in circles all night)! So, we decided to a try swing. Please know that this is my personal decision. Babies should sleep on a firm, flat mattress, and be placed on their backs. I was scared to death when my husband and I made the decision to let him sleep in his swing. I barely slept because I was constantly checking on him. Thankfully, we were able to eventually get his reflux under control and put him into his crib. This is the swing that we used. Two reasons why I picked this one: it was a reasonable price and it had a plug in option (necessary when it is used most of the day, every day).
As I mentioned, I was constantly worrying while little man was sleeping. To ease my mind, we did purchase an owlet. This is not one of the items that I deem a necessary purchase, but I thought I would just mention how much it helped me get some sleep! The only negative was it didn’t work while he was in the swing. 🙁 Hence I was up and constantly checking on him!
Little man has never really liked to sleep, and I truly believe it is because he has a fear of missing out! To help get him to sleep, we established a routine very early on. I call it the four B’s! First we start by reading a Book. Getting a few good books for you little one is essential. Reading to your child every day will help him or her develop their language skills. Newborn babies are still developing their sight, so high contrast books are perfect. Here are a few that we loved!
Next, little man gets a Bath. I loved our baby bathtub. We started using it when little man was only four days old. It cradled him so nicely, and he has loved bath time ever since!
This next item goes along with bath time, and I know it might seem silly to mention, but little man has loved having his hair brushed since his first night in the hospital. This brush seems pricey, but it is worth every penny!
After bath, little man gets his Bottle (which I spoke about earlier), and the goes to Bed. We have actually had to add a fifth B now that little man is older, and it comes after the bottle, which is Brush teeth, but you don’t need to worry about that yet!
Well, we’ve finally made it to the end of our list! People are going to buy your little one all sorts of toys, but you really only need a few when they are a newborn (or ever, trust me). The only toys your newborn needs are, something that makes noise, something that they can grab, and something that is eye catching. Most of little man’s toys cover all of these! Our favorites are below!
That’s it! Other than your obvious needs (crib, clothes, diapers, and wipes), this is all that is necessary for your newborn! Trust me when I say that simple is much better! If and when we have another child, I will be sure to take the simpler route! Everything else just becomes clutter. So, to all the mamas or soon-to-be mamas out there, I hope that my list has helped, and I wish you all the best on your journey with a newborn! Savor every minute because time goes way too fast!