Friday, September 18, 2009

getting ready for baby

A while back I did a post on my personal blog for a friend of mine that was getting ready to have her first baby and was feeling those normal first time jitters (who am I kidding, I have jitters this time around and probably will with any future babies to come).

Anyway, I thought it was a pretty useful post, and got several useful comments from friends and family on their favorite things to have for their babies that I have added. Hope it helps someone! It has reassured me that I am ready the second time around:)

Going to the hospital:

The hospital provides the majority of the stuff you will need so really don’t stress. You will get there, they will get you in a gown and take care of you until (and after of course) you have that little baby.

Once the baby arrives, they have pretty much everything he will need to- diapers, wipes, bottles with formula if you need it, little shirts, caps... the works. They even send you home with a little starter kit with diaper cream, a brush for the baby (don’t lose it- it’s awesome) and other essential samples for you and the baby.

I think the most important thing to think about bringing is whatever will make you comfortable. I just like to make sure to have a camera, a little make-up (vain, I know), shower stuff and go home clothes for me and baby. Of course you will need the car seat (more on that later). And I think this time I am going to bring an i-pod and some dvds, but I don’t know that I will even use them... I just think they might help distract me... maybe:)

As far as worrying about your husband... I wouldn’t. Some people say that he should pack a bag, but as long as you have family and/or friends around. He can go home and take a break as needed. I would just warn him and tell him to bring whatever he wants.

Bringing baby home:

Car Seat & Stroller- Whatever kind of car seat and stroller you decide on just make sure you get a system that allows you to transfer your car seat to your stroller without having to unstrap him, pick him up, and re-arrange him in a new contraption. Paul and I had to think about the height of our stroller (so Paul could push it without having to hunch over) and the weight that our carseat would carry in case we had a big baby (I was 10 lbs and Paul was a 9lb. twin! and we had a hunch he would grow fast). We got the one pictured above and love it, but they have come out with lots of cool stuff since we had Kaden.

Taking care of baby:
Bathtime- I love Mustela products, but they can be expensive and hard to find. The next best thing in my opinion is Aveeno. I bought a baby bath, but I used a baby sponge I got more than I used the bath even. It is cheaper and easier to use and transport in the sink or bath. Soft baby washcloths and towels are always nice too.

Diapers- Boudreaux's Butt Paste for diaper rashes (Desitin works just fine too). And I don't have a preference on diapers really- I remember different ones working better for different stages. Huggies and Pampers are great and Costco brand is right up there with Huggies. It's always nice to get diapers and wipes at Costco because you will always need lots!
Regular Care & Emergencies- A thermometer, baby tylenol, finger nail clippers, nasal aspirator, onesies, burprags, and blankets. Just a little baby care kit should suffice. Carter's onesies are my favorite. Plain old cloth diapers are my favorite burprags. And it is always nice to have plenty of receiving blankets on hand because they are nice for everything- you will always want to use one to lay your baby on and they are constantly being spit up on, peed and pooped on.

I was a little shocked at how tricky breastfeeding was, but it really worked out for the best in the long run for Kaden and I (its cheaper and easier than formula for one thing, but I have had several friends that have struggled with it and I certainly think formula is just as good). I got
super engorged and throughout the whole experience had several cases of thrush and a few clogged duct infections (oooouuuch!).
These were my favorite tools...
Medela Nipple Shields made it a whole lot easier for Kaden to latch on and just worked better in general.
Lansinoh breast pads- these are the thinnest and most absorbent in my opinion, so you don't feel bigger than you already are:)
Avent breast pump was my favorite pump. I tried the hospitals, rented one from WIC, tried the $150 medela version, and the avent was the easiest, simplest, least painful, and easiest to transport. If you have to pump lots, then an electric one is probably the way to go- I think I might just rent from the hospital- they work awesome!
As far as treating the infections I got- refer to a doctor:)
...Oh and bottles are necessary obviously. Just look for bpa free, and gas reducing.

Finding a little you time/making a fussy baby happy:
(These are not all necessary- borrow from friends and see what works best for your baby before you decide to purchase because different things work for different babies- these are just ideas and what worked for me)

Baby swing- I got one like the one pictured above. I like it because it swings back and forth andside to side. Our little guy didn't like the back and forth movement as much as he did the side to side.

Rocker/Glider/Exercise Ball- I am
such a rocking chair girl and was so excited to rock my new little baby, but... he didn't seem to really like rocking!!! I felt pretty cheated to say the least and somehow out of desperation I found out that he liked bouncing on a big exercise ball with me. I think it may have helped me get back into shape a little faster too! I also found out when visiting a friend that he liked the gliding motion better than the rocking motion, using her glider. We have a glider now too- we'll see what our next likes!

Baby bouncer- when I was hospitalized from dehydration a few weeks after our first was born I remember feeling so overwhelmed with realizing I would have to take care of him in the hospital with me. Paul had football and school he couldn't get out of and he had been kind of a high maintenance baby up to that point. The hospital let me borrow a bouncer and it made all the difference!! He was happy being fed, burped, changed, snuggled, and bounced!!! We got one to have at home shortly after that.

Baby Bjorn- Our baby boy loved this and it allowed me to hold him easier and gave me an extra arm or two when I needed it. He had to be by me all the time it seemed, so this freed me up a little bit. We tried the Snugli version that was a little less expensive, but he just didn't take to it like he did the bjorn. I have been tempted to try the baby wraps too, but the bjorn worked great, so unless my next doesn't take to the bjorn I will just stick to what worked with our first.

Baby backpack- We got one from my sister-in-law that is old and faded, but this allowed me to have him by my side and do even more housework than the bjorn did. These are great for
so many things!!

Things I don't really think are necessary, but can be nice...

Hooter Hiders- Blankets work pretty well, but hooter hiders can be cute and really useful.
Boppy Pillow or "My breast friend"- Just regular pillows work pretty well too I think.
Wipes Warmer- I just don't think it is necessary unless your baby absolutely throws a fit when wiped. I have even been known to warm them up by blowing on them if they seem super cold.
Diaper Genie- I think my friend put it best when she said they are just difficult, stinky, diaper sausage makers.

Down the Road:

Colic and Teething Tablets, Playmat, Walker, Exersaucer, Bouncer, Food Grinder, Teething Toys, Books, and Music.

I think it is key also to remember how fast each stage goes, how fast baby stuff can add up in expenses, and remember you really don't want to crowd your house with tons of baby paraphernalia. Babies really don't need that much, but hopefully this post helps new moms in moments of desperation!

**Added by comments from friends and family
  • If it's a boy, get tiny wash cloths for when you change the diaper so you don't get sprayed!
  • Bring a nursing bra and pads to the hopital just in case the milk comes that early, and get the lansinoh cream!
  • For diaper rash I LOVED aquaphor.
  • My one "need" is my nursing cover. I also love our umbrella stroller which is a Chicco brand one.
  • Buy the very basics and wait until the baby comes to really shop.

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