How to Prepare For Your Newborn

Having a baby is an exciting and magical time. You’ll probably already know a bit about your baby’s personality and you’ll be wondering what he/she looks like. The only downside to having a new baby is all the things you need to buy in order to be ready. From the essentials to the cute clothes you just can’t leave in the store, the list is endless. It’s not just all the items you need that will send your mind into overdrive, it’s all the choice you have these days. If you can start saving money early on, it’ll be easier when shopping time arrives. Here’s a list of things you’ll need to prepare for baby.

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Cot

The most important thing your baby will need is somewhere comfortable to sleep when you all arrive home. Whether it’s a cot that you can transfer from your room to the nursery at the right time or a Moses basket that’s easy to move around, baby needs somewhere to lay its head. It’s a good idea to have something downstairs and upstairs so you don’t have to keep transporting it to different rooms. You’ll also need sheets, bedding and blankets to keep your little one comfortable and warm.

 

Car Seat

It’s the first item you’ll use when you leave the hospital. By law, you must put your baby in a car seat to travel in a car. It’s unacceptable to hold your baby while travelling so a car seat is an absolute essential. After a few days of settling your baby into your home, you’ll probably want to get out and about. Whether it’s just to see family and friends or get a bit of fresh air, a car seat is invaluable so it’s important to get a decent make for your money. Try using Walmart coupons and see what deals you can find.

 

Travel System/Pram

You’ll need a pram or travel system to get about. You may think you’ll be able to get by with just a car seat and a baby carrier but soon your little bundle of joy will grow and a pram may be the only way to settle him/her. It’s also useful for when you have to do the grocery shopping or take the dog for a walk. You can sometimes save money by buying travel systems because they include everything you need to travel with your baby, including car seats.

Clothing

It can be very tempting to go overboard on the baby clothing because there are so many wonderful outfits for babies now. However, as a new parent it’s wise to stick to the essentials. Most new parents are gifted with newborn clothes so if you have a large family or lots of friends, you won’t have to buy much. Choose the clothes your baby will wear home from the hospital and invest in six baby grows, six vests, six pairs of socks and two cardigans. If you’re having a Winter baby, make sure to get a hat, gloves and snowsuit too. If you really can’t resist buying clothes, go for 6-12 months instead of newborn. You’ll be surprised how quickly your baby will grow.

 

Feeding

Bottles, teats and a bottle brush are important when it comes to feeding. If you plan on breast feeding, you may find there are days when you’d rather give Dad the responsibility. You’ll also need a breast pump to express milk if you’re planning on letting other people feed the baby. After eating, young babies will need to be winded and it can cause a bit of a mess. Grab yourself some bibs and muslin squares but prepared to change baby’s and your own clothes from time to time.

 

Nappy Changing

We all know what happens after a baby eats. No matter how strong your gag reflex is, you may find yourself facing your biggest challenge with a baby’s nappy. To be prepared, you’ll need a changing mat or changing unit. You’ll also need nappies, baby wipes, nappy bags and rash cream. However, there are times when you’ll have no choice but to put your baby in a bath and throw the clothes in the trash.

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Bathing

It’s up to you how you choose to bath your baby. Some parents use a baby bath, some bath their baby’s in the kitchen sink and you can even use Blooming Bath for babies now. Your hospital and midwife may give you tips on how to bath your baby for the first few weeks. Use mild and gentle soaps made specifically for a baby’s sensitive skin and have soft baby towels ready to use. You should also switch to a non-bio detergent when washing baby’s clothes and towels.

 

Things That Are Not Essential but Handy to Have Around

 

A Baby Swing or Bouncer

As your baby grows, she/he will want to spend more time exploring. Your baby may want to have a vantage point when conversations are going on and some baby’s even like to watch TV or listen to music. A baby bouncer allows your baby to be positioned upright, while gently bouncing to relax. A bouncer is versatile because it’s safe enough for your baby to sleep in and it can double up as somewhere to feed your baby a bottle or wean onto solids.

 

A Changing Bag

For mothers, a changing bag can double up as a handbag. When baby arrives, you’ll need to carry a significant amount out and about with you. Every outing will take preparation because you’ll need to carry milk, nappies, spare clothing, creams, teething gels and much more. It’s also a place where you can keep your purse, phone and keys. In this sense, a good changing bag is an investment. You’ll be carrying the bag with you for a long time, so make sure you get the best quality you can afford.

 

Teething Jewellery

There will come a time when your baby starts to grab for things. It may be your hair, it may be your earrings or your necklace. As your baby starts to teeth, you may find that your susceptible to some bites. So, why not kill two birds with one stone? You can now buy teething jewellery that allows your baby to grab and bite at the same time, relieving any pain your baby may be in as his/her teeth come through.

Taking Care of Mum

Preparing for a baby isn’t all about the baby. To give your child the best, you have to be feeling at your best. There are few things you’ll need to make sure you’re comfortable and happy for your baby.

 

Nursing Bra and Pads

As you and your baby take on the challenge of breast feeding, you’ll want to be as comfortable as possible. You’ll need to get yourself a few nursing bras and some pads to cover any leakages. It’s a wonderful experience but not the most glamorous.

 

Pain Relief

Pain will come and go during pregnancy, labour and as a new mother. Make sure you know what pain relief you can get when you need it. For example, a tens machine is ideal for pregnancy back ache. Have you read up on the advantages and disadvantages of using gas and air or having an epidural?

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Get Help

Having a newborn to look after can be overwhelming. If family members or friends offer you help, take it. Let them do the house cleaning for you, let them cook you a meal or make you a cup of tea. If you’re not quite feeling back to normal and you find it difficult to move around (especially after a C-section) ask your partner to change nappies and hand you the baby for feeding. It’s important to focus as much on your healing as the baby.

 

Recognise Symptoms

Post-natal depression is being talked about more and more these days. If you notice symptoms of post-natal depression or your loved ones are telling you something isn’t quite right, it’s important to see and talk to a doctor. There are a variety of ways you can get help and you won’t be the first or last mother to go through it.

 

You’re Allowed to Say No

Bringing a new baby home is exciting for everyone and you may find that your home is a bit crowded in the days after giving birth. It’s expected for people to want to see the baby but you and your little family need your rest too. If grandparents are knocking on the door at 9pm every night for cuddles, when you’ve just got the baby to sleep, it’s time to politely turn them away. You need to start establishing routines for your baby, and family and friends need to understand that.

As a new parent it’s important to remember that doing your best is all you can do. Try to take each day as it comes. Take the time to enjoy your baby and takes lots of pictures together in the first weeks – you’ll be surprised how quickly they’ll fly by.

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