My cousin is expecting a baby in July. While talking to her this past weekend, I pulled out Gripe Water to help get rid of Maggie's hiccups. We also talked about Mylicon drops. She looked at me and said, "Why did you not tell me about all of this with Hailey?" I laughed and said, "You had the first baby. I didn't know about any of it." So it gave me the idea to share some of the things that I have really found useful with both girls. Here are a few of my favorite things where babies are concerned!
1. Gripe Water: I heard of gripe water with Sophie and tried it, but didn't have much luck with it. It didn't help her so I just kind of dismissed it. Maggie has been totally different. She gets hiccups all the time. A blogger friend, Emily Parker, suggested Gripe Water. I was desperate and gave it a try. It worked instantly. When she gets hiccups, I just give her a little and it almost always knocks out her hiccups. It is a miracle drug!
2. Mylicon: I love Mylicon drops. I like that it kills the foam in formula and I feel like it does help their tummies with gassiness. With Sophie I used the Target brand and found they worked a little better than the name brand kind. With Maggie I have used the Equate brand and they work great! Why pay more for just a name?
3. A good diaper bag: I totally recommend finding a diaper bag that you love. Shop around and don't just go for looks. Look at the function of the diaper bag. I really shopped around for a diaper bag this time and ended up going with the same bag I had with Sophie. I got a Kalencom. I love their bags! They clean easily and have plenty of space. Zulilly will occasionally have a sale on them and you can get them cheap! I also love the SkipHop diaper bags. You can find them cheaper on Amazon then on their actual website. They also carry them at Babies R Us and I saw one at Ross the other day. They are really cute, coated for easy clean up and have lots of space. Find one that fits your needs and go with it!
Skip Hop Kalencom
4. Rock N Play Sleeper: I highly recommend the Rock N Play sleeper by Fisher Price. This is what we got for Maggie to sleep in and she seems to really like it. It is angled which is great since she has reflux issues. She sleeps in it pretty good, but she is a grunty baby so it is hard to tell how soundly that really is. They are reasonable in price as well. They are also really easy to travel with because they are light weight. Glad my step-mom got this for me! There was a recent recall on these that said mold grew between the padding and the seat. I can see where this would happen if the child had an accident and you didn't clean the cover and let it dry. We have had no issues so far!
Target Image (This is the exact one I have!)
5. Breast Pump: I have tried to breastfeed both of my girls. With Sophie I ended up pumping. With Maggie I breastfed until we got home and then switched to formula. If you choose to pump, you need to invest in a good breast pump. I highly recommend an electric one because the hand pumps are time consuming and I don't think they work as well. My step-mom had purchased one for my cousin so I just used it. It is a Medela and it worked great! I would also recommend investing in the bra for hands free pumping Holding the bottles while you pump really ties you down. Target has a good variety of Medela products and they carry a lot of them in the store. A few more things I recommend if you decide to pump or breastfeed is lanolin cream for your nipples, hydrogel pads (water based are best and only use for 48 hours), and the nipple shields (for when you can't use the hydrogel pads anymore). There are also other accessories out there.
6. Bouncy Seat: We have a Boppy Bouncy Seat we used with Sophie that we use with Maggie as well. It is great for propping her up and for moving her where we need her (at the dining table, in the bathroom, etc.) Definitely get one!
7. Boppy Pillow: These are great for a lot of things. We used it to prop Sophie up while we got ready in the morning. We used it for tummy time occasionally We used it for feeding her (its real purpose). They are great for a lot of different things. I do not recommend leaving your child sitting in it unsupervised or for extended periods of time. We have used it for Maggie some, but I know we will use it more the older she gets.
8. Cloth Diapers: No, not for diapering, for burping! I have a stack of all kinds of cloth diapers that I used around the house for burp cloths. I save the cute one for when we go out. They are great for feeding and if they are a little stained, who cares? You just use them around the house, right? I have a ridiculous amount of them from Sophie and I bought a pack with Maggie as well. I go through four to five a day. It gets spit up on it or milk, in the clothes hamper it goes! I highly recommend getting some of these.
9. Carseat Canopy: This is something I wish I had with Sophie! It is like a tent that goes over the baby carrier. It is great for the doctor's office and other places you are worried about germs getting in or when it is cold. You can make your own (I found several tutorials) or buy one at carseatcanopy.com. I bought one and then had one given to me as a shower gift. Sometimes in parenting magazines, you can find a code to just pay for the shipping on one which is what I did.
Carseat Canopy Image
10. A&D Ointment: I still use this on Sophie and she is potty trained. She gets irritated once in awhile and this clears it up instantly! Get the ointment not the cream. I had a doctor tell me this. He said it worked better than any cream out there and so far it has!
11. Orbit Labels: I highly recommend these if you are sending your child to daycare or even for the church nursery. These are little rubber bands that have your child's name on them. I had these with Sophie and I am ordering some for Maggie as well. You can order these from inchbug.com. I love Inchbug! They have all kinds of neat things. I highly recommend their website!
12: Gowns: I love gowns for babies! They are so easy in those first weeks when you are changing diapers every 10 minutes. No snaps and it keeps them covered! Maggie's doctor at the hospital said she loved them because of their ease as well. Sophie lived in them and Maggie does too for the most part.
This is one of Sophie's old gowns from Old Navy! I think she looks like a caterpillar!
13. Quick Clean Micro-Steam Bags: I LOVE these bags! They are great at sterilizing and they are super easy to use. They are made by Medela, but there is also a Munchkin kind for cheaper. I have used both and they are the same. You wash your bottles and nipples or your breast pump equipment and put it in these bags with a little water and sterilize them in the microwave. You get 20 uses out of each bag. So great!
14. Graco Electric Nasal Aspirator: (I don't want to end on 13...he he!) This was suggested to me by a doctor when Sophie was really sick and had a very runny nose! It is super easy to use and really gets out the crud. Sophie wasn't crazy about it, but Maggie doesn't seem to mind and it kind of vibrates which causes them to sneeze which definitely gets the yucky stuff out! I would definitely get one!
Here is my list of essentials! I could go on and on! I have my opinion on bottles and pacis (I use Avent for both) and diapers and wipes (I use Pampers Sensitive), but that is something you need to decide for yourself at what works for your baby! I hope this helps all my new mommy friends!