Surviving the first few months of parenthood is no easy task! Below are a list of my favorite items that have kept both mama and baby very happy!
The Dockatot is an absolute must for me. From day 1, Arlo has been a great sleeper and I like to believe that it is partially in credit to his Dockatot. I am extremely fortunate and have never suffered through those infamous sleepless nights that parents are always warning you about the moment they hear that you are having a baby. Arlo absolutely loves sleeping in his Dockatot. It’s portable, so I keep it downstairs with me during the day for convenient monitored napping and take it back upstairs for when it’s bedtime. It is also great for traveling because you won’t have to stress about the struggles of your baby adjusting to a new bed – just bring his Dockatot along! Napping, bonding, playtime, cosleeping, and tummy time all happen in his Dockatot. Seriously, this is by far my favorite baby item for Arlo, it works miracles. Remember, a sleeping baby makes for a happy, rested mama 🙂
I wanted to love those trendy baby wraps so much, I really did. I envisioned myself being one of those trendy moms that you see on Instagram with the flawless look of her newborn effortlessly snuggled up against her in one of those cute wraps. They just scream motherhood perfection. Well, I tried the wrap route and I just couldn’t get on board with it in the end. But having a newborn that is needing constant snuggles makes it hard for those of us with only two hands [aka all moms], so I ordered the Ergobaby carrier. I absolutely love mine! It is so comfy and easy to wear and my baby falls asleep every time he is in it. Now I am able to do laundry, wash dishes, make lunch, go shopping, and even write in my blog, all the while my baby is happily right there with me.
Probably the best $7 I have spent all year [aside from maybe that much needed occasional glass of wine]. What a lifesaver this nifty little tool has been! The first few weeks of breastfeeding were challenging [to say the least]. It would be 3am, my baby screaming his head off due to latch frustrations, and me crying to myself as I was slowly started to lose my sanity. Some nights he just couldn’t get a good latch and as a result, he would get very hungry and very upset. Aside from giving up on breastfeeding, I was at a loss on what to do next. A lot of latch consultants and nurses will steer nursing mothers away from all pacifiers, bottles, and nipple shields in fear of your newborn developing “latch confusion”. This strict advice can make any mother feel guilty if they do indeed turn to one of those items for help. I got to a point though where I was feeling desperate enough for some relief and I decided to give the nipple shield a try. It worked wonders! I quickly discovered that I was producing an overwhelming amount of milk that Arlo wasn’t quite ready to handle on his own. The nipple shield really helped to slow things down and regulate the flow for him. Every time I used the shield, I felt guilty that I was “taking the easy route” or “developing a dependency for my child”, but what mattered most to me at that moment was that my child was eating again. And after about a month of using the shield, he developed better nursing skills and day by day he was using it less and less until he self-weaned right off it.
The shield works great for…
- sore nipples
- inverted nipples
- flow issues
- latch problems
- preemies whose motor skills might be underdeveloped
- And probably any other issue you and your little one might be struggling with while nursing!
Note: I do not recommend this item for every nursing mother. I only recommend it to those who have really been struggling with nursing and need a little extra boost to get them back on the right path to a successful breastfeeding experience.
Please, please, please save your money and do not buy a changing table. Never once have I thought to myself, “Gee, I really wish I was limited to only changing my child’s diaper in his nursery because that would be so much more convenient.” Trust me, you won’t miss having one for a single second. Instead, invest in a foam changing pad. It’s portable, easy to clean, and it’s much much cheaper than a changing table. Rejoice! You now have the freedom to change your baby wherever, whenever.
I originally bought my GoPro to document all of my travels, but I tend to favor photography over videography and it ended up going to waste and was rarely used. Now with Arlo, and being the obsessive first time parent that I am, I use my GoPro to document all of Arlo’s life experiences. And believe me, you will want to do the same! What I love about the GoPro is that it is very light and portable, allowing me to keep it at hand for capturing those spontaneous precious moments with my son. I keep it in my diaper bag and with one quick push of a button, I’m recording that adorable smile that he’s been hiding from me for the past two months! Some parents are happy enough recording with their phones, but I know that when Arlo’s adventures get bigger and faster and dirtier, I’m going to want a camera that can keep up with him. The GoPro can film underwater and has a wide range of settings fit for every life moment.
I love Carter’s fleece sleepsuits [aka sleep sack]. They are cozy, cute, and cheap. Arlo loves being in his sleep sack. It saves me the hassle and worry of his feet getting too cold. Arlo is an active sleeper and an even more active pooper. So he is constantly squirming and kicking and wriggling his way right out of his blankets, which can lead to many frustrations. Below I illustrated my discovery of life with and without the sleep sack. The choice is yours…
Life without a sleep sack VS. Life with a sleep sack
Active sleeper/Active pooper Active sleeper/Active pooper
Cold toes/tangled legs Warm/cozy baby
An awake/frustrated baby Sleeping/happy baby
An awake/frustrated mom Sleeping/happy mom