When Sophia was born, I was still one of the first few of my friends to have a baby, so I hit the ground running (more like google searching) to find the best products not only for baby but also for new moms. Here are some of my favorite finds!
1. MILKIES MILK SAVER
Being a first time mom, and new to the whole breastfeeding situation, it never crossed my mind that, if your baby is nursing from one side, the other side will leak. Milkies Milk Saver was by far the absolute best mom-product that I received at my baby shower. It is exactly what it says, a milk saver. You simply slide the milk saver on the side that you are not nursing from, and any milk that comes out will be saved and you can pour into a bottle and save for later. I found this particularly helpful when I quickly realized that I had a low milk supply. Though I know a lot of moms who were blessed with a great supply and they love the milk savers as well! The only thing I will caution you about is, sometimes you can get so used to it that you forget you’re using it (ok, or maybe you’re too tired to remember), so when you lean over to lay your baby back down the milks spills out. After that happened a couple of times to me, I quickly remedied the situation by pulling the strap of my shirt down on that arm so I would make sure to remember to remove the milk saver before attempting to lay Sophia back down.
This product gave me such a peace of mind and reduced my stress over my low milk supply that it is automatically the #1 item that goes into gift baskets any time I am going to a baby shower. It is also overwhelmingly the gift for which I receive the most expression of gratitude from new moms!
2. BABY 411 BOOK
The Baby 411: Clear Answers & Smart Advice for Your Baby’s First Year was by far one of the greatest books that I purchased when Sophia was born. It is also another baby shower gift basket favorite of mine! The design is more informative vs other books which looked more like novels to me. This book was very easy for me to quickly look up things when I had questions or was concerned about something. In addition to the very help graphs and charts that are contained within this book, it also has a lot of information in bullet point format, which I really appreciated. I was constantly referencing this book to check everything from how much Sophia should be sleeping to how much she should be eating, at what age she gets certain vaccinations, what teething symptoms look like, at what the learning stages were (when she would say her first word, grab objects, eat solid foods, crawl, walk, etc).
It was just a wealth of knowledge, and while I know that all children are different, it really gave peace of mind to this new mom to gauge where most children were at certain months their first year. It also provided a lot of useful information regarding sleep training. We had a lot of sleep issues with Sophia…not so much her sleeping (once she was out, she was a good solid sleeper), but more so getting her to fall asleep. We tried a couple methods in this book until we found what worked best for us. We had planned to use the same method with Ollie, but so far (knock on wood), we haven’t had to implement a single one, yet.
3. SANDRA BOYNTON BOOKS
Children’s books may seem a bit silly to list as a “go-to” product for new moms, but for us these board books by Sandra Boynton were (and still are) great! I have shown a few of our favorite above, but there really are a lot to choose from. They are perfect little board books with fun stories that the kids absolutely love. Not only did my little ones enjoy hearing these stories being read to them, but Sophia also enjoys “reading” her favorites to Ollie now too. I think they are just a fantastic way to get kids excited about reading and the colorful illustrations are great for babies to look at, and the sturdiness of the board book is fantastic – we haven’t lost one of these books to any accidents yet!
4. PAMPERS BABY DRY DIAPERS
Unless you’ve had children before, or have had to change a lot of diapers in your life, the world of diapers is very new to new parents (as it was for us). We had received a lot of different diapers at our baby shower, and it was through trial and error of using those, we figured out what worked and what didn’t. I’ll start by saying, the baby diapers that have the wetness indicator are always a plus (personally I never even knew this was a thing until actually opening the packs of diapers to put away). We tried some generic brands (Target, Kirkland, etc), higher end brands (Honest Company), and of course the very well known brands (Huggies, Pampers, Luvs).
For us, Huggies on Sophia always seemed to be too wide and caused leaks more often, she was a tall and thin baby. The Pampers swaddlers and cruisers were ok for her during the day, but for those longer overnight periods of sleep, we needed something a bit more. We tried Luvs, and they at first seemed to work well, but somewhere after the second box, they didn’t seem to work as well anymore. That is when we found Pampers Baby Dry diapers and the end of nighttime leaks! We continued the use of the Pampers Baby Dry diapers all the up until she was potty training, then we switched over to Pampers Easy-Ups. The one downside of the Baby Dry diapers would be that they do not have the wetness indicator; but for us that wasn’t an issue given we only used this type for overnight periods of sleep, so it was a no-brainer that the diaper would be wet when changing her in the morning. For Ollie, he was smaller than Sophia when she was born, but this little guy grew quickly! So while we continued our use of Pampers swaddlers in the beginning, the rate and way in which he is growing has allowed us to use an assortment of different brands without leaks (including Huggies, Luvs, and Pampers).
5. BAMBOOBIES REUSABLE NURSING PADS
After seeing all of the different disposable nursing pads there were and thinking to myself, that doesn’t seem comfortable at all, I went on the search for something else. I had tried some organic cotton nursing pads, but while they were more comfortable than a disposable nursing pad, they also were a bit too small, leaked very easily, and took forever to dry (never really dried to a perfectly flat shape either). SUPER frustrated, I took to the web (and of course Amazon), to look for a better option. That’s when I found Bamboobies! I never looked back, and continue to express my gratitude for these little hearts of amazingness and spread the word to all mamas out there (you better believe these are another staple of gift baskets I give at baby showers I attend).
These nursing pads are ultra-thin (and soft!!), allowing them to conform nicely to your shape without making you uncomfortable. Also on the topic of uncomfortable, the daytime pads are heart shaped, which at first I thought was odd and would show more but actually it was quite the opposite which was such a relief! They also have a leak-proof back lining so you don’t have to worry about leaking like some other nursing pads do. I never leaked once using these! You can get a pack of 12 (3 daytime and 3 overnight) for about $35 on Amazon — which if you compare to some other types (disposable, etc) and brands, you may think is crazy…trust me when I saw with all sincerity, it is NOT, you will 100% not regret this purchase. My link is to the pack I mention above, but there are many other options, so just search Amazon to see all of the selections (and yes they are Prime eligible, at least at the time of this post).
I hope this post has been helpful. It was difficult to narrow things down to just 5 items, but this would be an incredibly long post had I added any more. However, I do have more recommendations so if you would like to see more about anything specific (baby carriers, strollers, cribs, kids clothing, maternity clothing, baby food, etc) just let me know and I’ll do another post on more specified baby/toddler/new parent/new mom products that I love.