Saying that raising baby number one was a challenge would be an understatement. And looking back, there were a handful of baby items that could’ve really made that period of time a whole lot easier. But you live, you learn, right?
When I got pregnant with baby number two, I thought about what was missing from what we had that could make our parenting life both simpler and less stressful. I wanted to eliminate the unnecessary and find the most practical and useful baby things. I’d say by baby number 3, I really had it down! Now I keep seeing more amazing products out there that have me thinking, “I wish I would’ve had that for my babies!”
Top Baby Items I Wish I Had for My First Baby
Here I’ve created a crowd-sourced list of items plenty of mamas are wishing they would’ve had for their first babies. So, pay attention because you’re going to want to snag these baby things up (or add them to your registry list stat!)
Parenting is messy business. Never-ending diaper changes and spit-up are just the beginning...in fact, spilling breastmilk and formula all over the counter happened for me far more often than I’d like to admit. Usually because I was attempting to prepare a bottle while holding my fussy baby in the other. Trying to put them down resulted in cries only a hangry baby can make, so I always tried to do both at the same time. What I needed was the bökee!
The bökee offers the perfect place to securely rest your baby’s bottle so that you can easily prepare it one-handed. You can twist caps on and off, pour breastmilk, or scoop formula without having to worry about any spill or needing to put your baby down while doing so.
There were so many times that I needed to just hurry up and get a bottle made and this would’ve saved so much stress. This baby item is incredibly simple in design which is why we added to our list of the best minimalist baby products, yet its function makes it one of those baby products you just have to have!
Whether it’s your first baby or your fourth, you’ll do anything to help them sleep. Going for a drive or pushing your baby in a stroller around your house just to get them a nap sounds completely crazy before you have a baby, but lack of sleep brings out major desperation! Boy what I wouldn’t have given to have a way to avoid this though. And that’s why the Mamaroo 4 Infant Seat is something you want to have.
This innovatively designed baby seat is much more than just your typical bouncer. With a 4-setting noise machine, 5 different speeds, and 5 unique motions (including car ride, kangaroo, tree swing, rock-a-bye, and wave) every baby can have exactly what they need to help them relax. While they drift off to dreamland you'll finally be able to check something off of your to-do list.
I had a bassinet that was handed down to me that I used for my first two babies. It’s hard to say no to a free piece of gear like that when there is already so much to purchase. Although it was still a wonderful place for my babies to sleep during their months while we room shared, it was not convenient for me at all when I had to check on them or feed them during the night.
Because it was taller than my bed, I had to completely sit up to check on them if they made a weird noise. If I was lifting them out or putting them back in, I’d have to stand to do so. Not ideal when you need to feed your new baby multiple times per night. That’s when I found the Arm’s Reach Co-Sleeper and it was everything I thought it would be.
This unique bassinet attaches to the side of your bed, meaning the fourth wall of the bassinet is essentially your mattress (though the side can be put up as needed). This means your baby is lower than you and you can practically lay next to them (without the risks of co-sleeping). It made nighttime feeding so much easier and I could always see when she fell asleep.
I know I wasted so much breastmilk from the opposite breast when I was breastfeeding my babies. Because of letdown, most moms will end up leaking quite a bit of milk. Multiply that by how many times you breastfeed...and that lost milk really adds up!
The Haakaa Silicone Breast Pump is a perfect solution. It’s neither manual nor electric, but instead, it suctions to the mother’s breast and catches any milk as a result of leaks and letdown. I would’ve absolutely loved to have used this with all my babies knowing I could’ve built up quite the stash from simply suctioning this onto the opposite breast while I was sitting around breastfeeding anyway!
This gadget is especially useful for moms with oversupply issues who also need to relieve the pain of uncomfortable engorgement.
Pro Tip: Use the bökee to hold your Haakaa in place when you're finished so it doesn't tip over!
5.) Nose Frida
Something else I really would’ve loved to have had with my first baby is this handy little booger suctioning tool. I know it sounds gross – you’re essentially sucking snot out of your baby’s nose. (Don’t worry, it doesn’t actually come near your mouth!)
Infants get so much gunk stuck up in their tiny nostrils and you’ll have an uncomfortable little snorter on your hands if you don’t relieve it for them in some way. Yes, you get those bulbs at the hospital, but those barely do anything next to this powerful little tool. In fact, it’s even recommended by CU Anschutz Medical Campus to help rid your baby of their congestion.
This one falls into the category of not the most exciting item to register for or purchase for your baby, but it’s something that you’ll truly be so glad you have.
6.) Hands-Free Wearable Breast Pump
Pumping breastmilk is a difficult process for a lot of moms. As a full-time working mom with my first, I spent a lot of time pumping breastmilk. But it was always so cumbersome and uncomfortable. While other moms could fully pump in 10 minutes, I never found myself getting enough in even 20 minutes. It was stressful and my supply dwindled quickly.
With my third baby, I found the Freemie Breast Pump. This pump has completely hands-free cups that fit right in your bra. I could discreetly pump in meetings and even pumped during my drive times – multitasking for the win! Other amazing options include the Elvie and Willow, which are both wireless, making them even more portable than the Freemie. These three options are definitely changing the pumping game for breastfeeding moms.
Almost every parent uses a highchair with their baby so they have a safe and comfortable spot to sit once they start eating solid foods. It’s pretty much a no-brainer when it comes to baby gear, right? But then somewhere along the way, I saw a friend with one of the baby chairs that attached to the counter and immediately thought I.need.one.of.those.
I knew it would be such a great baby product to have and I was right! Not only could my baby sit at the counter alongside me while I worked in the kitchen, but it was so nice to pack it up and bring it to gatherings where I knew my little one would have no place to sit and eat otherwise.
Additionally, this could easily replace a high-chair for any family who is tight on space. I love this one from Inglesina because it actually has a detachable tray, too!
As a first-time mom, I kept reading how baby-wearing would lead to a baby's over-dependence on you, never being able to sleep independently. Well of course I wanted my baby to be a good sleeper so I made sure not to do this. And I didn’t do it with my second either. But guess what? Trying to get through the witching hour every night when my first babies were tiny was brutal!
By my third baby, I wised up knowing that you really can’t hold a baby too much and that wearing your baby sometimes doesn’t mean you can’t also teach your baby to become an independent sleeper. I absolutely LOVED using my ring sling with my third baby. Our evenings were so much more peaceful and I loved the bonding it allowed for, too.
I couldn’t wait to pass on my ring sling to a first-time expecting mama after we were past that stage. I told her, “You don’t know this yet, but you will want this!” Wrap carriers are another great option.
Whether you're shopping around for your first baby or are an experienced parent trying to get it right the second (third, fourth) time around, we can't recommend these baby products enough for making the journey just a little bit easier.