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  • Writer's pictureCristina Gibson

First Time Mom and Baby Must Haves

Updated: Sep 23, 2022

I welcomed my baby girl Madeline on September 8, and as a first-time mom, it was totally overwhelming making my baby registry. There are so many brands and products for babies, and the prices are all over the place. I was torn between not wanting to spend a ton of money on things a baby will quickly outgrow, but wanting to invest in items that would be worth it or make life easier.

My girl is now almost 3 months old, and these are my top recommendations for baby and mama.

For Baby

I bought this bassinet before I had my baby, and I'm so glad I chose this one! I ended up having an unplanned C-section and this bassinet was a lifesaver because it rotates 360 degrees and you can swing the sleeper right onto your bed without getting up. When you're recovering from ab surgery, getting out of bed can be tough. This sidewall is flexible so you can scoop up your baby easily while you're in bed. It has options for white noise, vibration, and a nightlight, too. I actually got mine used on OfferUp since baby only uses it for their first few months. Check Facebook Marketplace too!

I love this for a few reasons, but the biggest one is that it wipes completely clean! Who wants to wash stinky cloth covers for traditional changing pads? Trust me, your baby will pee or poop on the changing table at some point and this item makes cleanup so much easier. The hanging mirrored mobile keeps your baby distracted during diaper changes, and bottom is non skid with adhesive to stick on top of any dresser or bookcase–no changing table required.

My babe loves these binkies! Our first one came in a registry sample box, and I've been buying them ever since. They're silicone and the shape is easier for her to keep in her mouth than some others I've tried. Keep an extra in your diaper bag to calm baby in case they're fussy in the car or while out. MAM also makes glow in the dark pacis, which are perfect for nighttime. If you're expecting, you can try Babylist's Pacifier Box, which has an assortment of 6 different brands to see which your little one likes before you stock up.

This seat will be your best friend. The baby can bounce themselves with their own body weight, so there's no need to replace batteries or restart it every 20 minutes. I put Maddie in this while I'm showering, working, or folding laundry. Speaking of laundry, the cover slides off and you can throw right in the washer and dryer, which is super helpful. You can also adjust the seat to different heights as your baby grows.

I admit it, I thought this device seemed totally disgusting when I first heard about it. But it's truly been a lifesaver when Maddie got her first cold, and the boogers don't get anywhere near your mouth thanks to a foam filter in the base of the blue part. It helps you clear your babies nose quickly, and Maddie doesn't even seem to mind it. Consider me converted!

I was skeptical of this Montessori-inspired gym because of the price, but I'm glad we got it! Madeline loves laying on her back looking at the contrast cards, mirror, and hanging toys. The mat is great for tummy time and it's machine washable. There's different sensory zones to explore, and new ways to use it as baby grows. One note: there is a squeaker toy in the mat, so if you have a dog, your fur baby may love this gym, too!

This has been called the Tesla of baby monitors and now I see why! It's super high tech and full of helpful info about your baby. More than a monitor, Nanit Insights is constantly analyzing your baby's sleep. It tracks the room temperature, naps, time asleep, time in bed, and wake times. The camera has two way audio, so you can see and talk to your baby in real time from your office or wherever you are. There are also sound options including waves, white noise, nature, and more. Nanit offers wearables that track baby's breathing, like pajamas and swaddles, for added peace of mind.

For Mom

Sayonara mesh undies! This compression underwear set is super comfortable, chic, and comes with reusable heat and ice packs that you slip into the bra and panties. It's so cute that I still wear the bralette months after having my baby.

Pregnancy and motherhood can be pretty isolating, especially in COVID times, and this free app is awesome. It's like Bumble for women who are pregnant, trying to conceive, or have kids, and lets you connect with with other local women. You can get advice, find support, and make plans to meet up in real life. Women I met on Peanut have shared everything from C-section recovery tips to sleep training guides and the best local Facebook groups for playdates. Highly recommend!

I found Ritual after I already had Maddie, but they have awesome Prenatal and Postnatal vitamins, as well as multivitamins for men, women, and kids. All of their formulas are vegan, sustainably sourced, and made with traceable ingredients. They taste minty fresh–there's no gross smell or upset stomach. Four weeks after having my C-section, I got appendicitis and had to get my appendix removed, so my body needed all the help it could get to recover. If you use code GIBSON10, you can save 10% off your first 3 months!

I've been a member since 2019, but this was a lifesaver for me while pregnant, too. Not only do they have designer dresses great for holiday parties or weddings, but they have maternity clothes and casual clothes, too. You can rent 4 items at a time, swap out each month, and buy anything you love at a major discount off retail. I had zero interest in buying a whole new maternity wardrobe I'd only wear for a few months, so I was able to get cute preggo clothes every month thanks to RTR. It's also great as your body is changing postpartum, and you need different sizes of clothes temporarily after giving birth. I have a code for 40% off your first month, so comment below or email me if you want it.

What are your mom and baby musts? Let me know in the comments!

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