I can hardly believe our baby boy is 4 months old! I remember feeling utterly exhausted in the first couple of weeks, dreaming of the day when he would sleep through the night. Now that he’s been sleeping through the night for a while, I’m dreaming of going back to when he was a newborn again. Ha! I guess what everyone says about it flying by is true.
Seeing how we’re officially out of the newborn stage I felt like this would be a good time to share what we found most helpful during the fourth trimester. To be honest I was hesitant to post this now, considering current events, but I’ve had a few pregnant mamas ask me what I recommend and I don’t want to leave them hanging. Plus I know how overwhelming it can be to put together a list of everything you need, especially when there are a million options for every item.
When I put together my list I tried my best to take a minimalist approach and focus on quality over quantity. With that in mind some things are on the pricier end but they are durable enough that they can be purchased second hand or will hold up through multiple children. I didn’t include anything that we have in the nursery because I did a separate post which you can find here. If you have any newborn favorites you’d like to add to the list please share them with us in the comments below!
- Solly Wrap– Everyone recommended this wrap for the newborn stage and now I know why. It’s soft and stretchy so it feels super cozy for both mama (or dad) and baby. Anytime Grant was fussy I would pop him in the Solly and he would immediately calm down. It was essential if I wanted to get anything done around the house or have him nap on the go.
- Baby Bjorn Bouncer– If I were to only have one baby gear item it would be this chair. We’ve used it since our first few days at home and still use it every day, and he just sits there, happy as a clam. I think it’s also relaxing for him because he tends to have bowel movements whenever he’s in it. Because of that I recommend getting a backup cover for potential blow outs.
- Snugapuppy Swing– We used this swing almost every day for the first month. He would nap fairly well in it in the beginning but then as he got older he stopped liking it for some reason. Between the short life span and the amount of space it takes up I’m not sure I would get it again. So I guess this one isn’t necessarily a favorite but it is a great option for swings. Just not something my baby liked long term.
- Nuna Demi Grow Stroller– I spent a long time debating which stroller to get and ultimately decided on this one because we liked all of the features it came with. It’s not the cheapest option but the quality is great and the bottom area is meant to hold a second child so it’s something that we can use for years to come, should we have another baby.
- Nuna PIPA Lite Car Seat– This is the lightest car seat on the market (and also one of the safest) so it’s very easy to maneuver around with him in it.
- Azaria Diaper Bag– The quality of this bag is excellent, it fits more than enough items and I love that it’s made from vegan leather.
- Boppy Newborn Lounger– This is great to have around the house for after feedings or just when you need to set your baby down and don’t want them to lay flat. We still use it on a daily basis.
- LOVEVERY Play Gym– This is probably one of our most used items on this list, next to the Baby Bjorn Bouncer. I love that it comes with a detailed booklet on ways to interact with your baby at each stage, is machine washable, and neutral enough to fit in with any decor. I’m excited to check out their play kits next!
- Fisher Price Kick n’ Play Piano Gym– You guys actually recommended this to me for tummy time and it’s definitely helped. As much as I hate to admit it because it’s absolutely hideous and the songs get stuck in your head. But I’ll suffer through almost anything to make sure he’s getting his tummy time.
- Boppy Pillow– I actually bought this because I thought I wasn’t going to be able to sit after giving birth. Ha! Turns out I didn’t need it for that but it has been useful for tummy time and will also come in handy in the next few months when he starts sitting up.
- Crinkle Paper– The black and white contrast is perfect for newborn eyes and the crinkle sound captivates their attention. He plays with it every day now that he’s starting to grab and feel things.
- Freddie the Firefly– Another toy that we use every day. This brand also makes books and we have a few of those too. There’s something about the smiley faces that he loves. His face lights up with a smile every time I show it to him.
- Baby Animals Book– We look at this book every morning during tummy time and Grant absolutely LOVES it. I name all of the animals and what sounds they make and just he stares in awe.
- Brown Bear Brown Bear– The illustrations in this book always capture his attention and it’s short enough that we can usually get through the entire thing.
- Peek-A Who?– Another short and super cute book. My friend got us this one and it’s adorable.
- Little Blue Truck– I love the messages behind the stories in these books. They can be a little long for newborns at times but we can usually make it through the entire thing.
- Pout Pout Fish– An adorable series that’s fun to read. The Sweet Dreams book is his favorite before naps or bed time. It’s nice and short and it always makes me smile.
- Where You Are: My Love will Find You– I bought this book when I was still pregnant and it instantly brought me to tears. It’s so sweet and the illustrations are beautiful. It’s more for me than him but still worth having.
- Robeez Socks– We tried probably four different brands of socks and these were the only ones that didn’t consistently fall off. In fact, they’ve never fallen off once!
- Cloud Island Sleepers– Of all of the baby clothes I bought we definitely got the most wear out of these in the beginning. They have built in mittens and footies, and are so convenient for frequent diaper changes.
- H&M Organic Onesies– Once we transitioned him out of the swaddle we started dressing him in onesies because the sleepers were a little too warm on top of the Magic Merlin Suit. H&M has great organic cotton onesies that are affordable too. I’m borderline obsessed with their baby clothes!
- Halo Bassinest– I debated forever on which bassinet to get because I knew it was something we wouldn’t use for long. I ended up registering for this one because I loved that you didn’t have to get out of bed to reach the baby which I knew would come in handy for breastfeeding at night. It’s kind of like co-sleeping without the worry of smothering them which is awesome. That said, we only used ours for a month because he transitioned to his crib after I started exclusively pumping. That’s another post in itself but either way they will outgrow it quickly so keep that in mind when considering this as an option.
- Snuggle Me– This is another item that we didn’t use for long but I will say it came in handy to help him sleep in the bassinet. Of course it’s not recommended to use it for sleeping but I felt comfortable having him swaddled in it when he was right next to me.
- Halo Sleep Sack– Our hospital gave us one of these and he slept in it every night for the first month. The velcro swaddle is so easy and the zipper is great for late night diaper changes.
- Ollie Swaddle– Once he started breaking out of the sleep sack regularly we transitioned him to the Ollie and it worked like a dream. Of course that only lasted a month until he started rolling over in it. They like to keep you on your toes!
- Aden and Anais Swaddle Blankets– We would occasionally use these to swaddle him for naps and they worked great. Now we use them as lightweight blankets for the stroller or for play time.
- Cherish the First 6 Weeks– A friend of mine recommended this book and I found it to be very helpful. The author does a great job explaining many of the basics when it comes to caring for a newborn and getting them on a sleeping schedule.
- Taking Cara Babies Newborn Course– I read several baby sleep books so that I could figure out which routine would work best for us. Then I found this course and decided to buy it so that Brandon and I could watch it together. Otherwise it would just be me telling him what to do and that’s a recipe for disaster when you’re both exhausted and you have a baby crying in your ear. If saving your marriage isn’t reason enough to watch it, the information is presented really well and is extremely helpful. It’s essentially a softer version of sleep training that doesn’t require any crying it out. I felt it was so important for us to establish this early on so that we didn’t deal with issues down the road. So far it’s worked great for us!
- Merlin Sleep Suit– After I watched Grant roll over in his swaddle (twice) I knew it was time to transition him out of it. We started him in this suit when he was 2 months and he slept 7 hours straight the first night. It’s great because it allows him to suck his thumb and soothe himself but still helps him control his startle reflex. Now I just have to figure out what we’re going to do when he outgrows it.
- LectroFan Sound Machine– As any baby sleep book will tell you, a sound machine is a must. We actually started with the rechargeable travel version of this one and it worked so well we bought this one too. I should note that I also have the Hatch sound machine but I’m not a fan of the white noise option or that you have to have your phone to adjust some of the features. Maybe I’m just not as technologically advanced as everyone else.
- Infant Optics DXR-8 Baby Monitor– I chose this monitor because it’s not connected to WIFI so it can’t be hacked. That said, it doesn’t have all of the fancy options that the WIFI monitors have but it works fine for us and will be easy to take with us when we travel.
- The First Years Tub– This tub fits perfectly in our kitchen sink and the hammock is great for newborns as it allow their bodies to stay submerged so that they don’t get too cold. We still use it every day and we love it.
- Organic Cotton Towels– These towels and washcloths are so soft and are the perfect size too. I recommend getting a few to have on hand.
- 3-Step Cradle Cap System by Fridababy– Grant had a small case of cradle cap in the first month but we used this with some olive oil and it cleared it right up.
- Nail Frida by Fridababy– These are shaped in a way that makes it virtually impossible to cut your baby’s skin. I love how easy they are to use!
- Saline Nasal Spray– We use this every night with the snot sucker bulb (what is that thing called?) that we got from the hospital to make sure he can breathe clearly while he sleeps. The ingredient list is just natural sea salt and purified water. There’s no unnecessary additives like you might find in other brands.
- Oogiebear– There’s always some bats in the cave throughout the day that I don’t want to have to suck out and that’s where this little tool comes in. It makes it so easy to scoop them right out. I use it every day, multiple times a day.
- Baby Bum Brush– I thought this was kind of silly at first but now that I have it I can’t imagine life without it. It makes it so much easier to apply diaper cream without making a mess with your hands.
- Weleda Diaper Rash Cream– I bought a few different diaper creams to have on hand in case of a rash and this one has worked like a dream. As soon as we see any redness we apply this and it’s gone the next day.
- Water Wipes– I actually used these for myself before Grant was in the picture so it was easy to decide which ones we would have for him. They work great!
- Honest Company Diapers– We rotate between these and the Pampers Pure because the indicator line is convenient for knowing whether or not he needs to be changed at the dream feed. But these are great for day time and we’ve had minimal issues using them.
- My Brest Friend Nursing Pillow– I only nursed Grant for the first month (even though he’s still getting breastmilk exclusively) but I found this pillow to be really helpful during that time.
- Comotomo Bottles– We tried a few different bottles and these are definitely the best. They’re vented to reduce gas and are so much easier to clean than the popular Dr. Brown’s bottles. Plus I like that they’re silicone and not plastic.
- OXO Tot Bottle Brush– A bottle brush is a must when you’re bottle feeding. I like that this one is neutral and that it comes with a stand.
- Papabilic Sanitizer and Dryer– I don’t think it’s necessary to sterilize your bottles every day (unless you have a preemie or an immune compromised babe) but this has been great for drying bottles and pump parts. It fits a ton and I like that it reduces clutter on the counter and keeps everything separate from food and dust. It’s made my life so much easier!
- Rubbermaid Basin– One of you recommended we get a basin for soaking bottles so that we only have to wash them twice a day and it has been so awesome! We just rinse them and submerge them in the basin until we’re ready to do a full wash. Again, it helps keep everything contained so there’s less clutter and they’re kept separate from food.
- Copper Pearl Bibs– We didn’t start using these until closer to 3 months but they’ve been so helpful for catching drool and spit up. Because it’s much easier to change a bib than an entire outfit! Plus they patterns are super cute.
- Copper Pearl Burp Cloths– I bought a few different kinds of burp cloths and these are the best quality. They’re thick enough that nothing soaks through and I love the adorable patterns.
- Kindred Bravely Sublime Hands Free– This is my favorite pumping bra to wear during the day. It’s supportive yet comfortable and I like that the holes are centered rather than off to the sides. If you plan to pump frequently then I highly recommend it!
- Rumina Pump & Nurse Bra– Even though I prefer the support of the Kindred Bravely bra, this one is much more comfortable to sleep in so I wear it at night.
- Reusable Nursing Pads– I’m not sure if everyone needs these but I sure do. These are soft and much more comfortable than disposable nursing pads, not to mention more eco-friendly.
- Larken Signature Tank– I wish these weren’t so expensive but I also think they’re worth the money. The material is buttery soft, they’re long enough to wear with leggings and they have comfy thick straps. I also have their pumping bra and it’s very comfortable but I find it cumbersome to get the pump parts in and out.
- Lululemon Align Leggings– Another pricey item that I can’t help but love. The good thing is that you can wear them during pregnancy, postpartum and anytime really. They’re the perfect mix of supportive and stretchy.
- Aerie Play High Waisted Leggings– These are like a cheaper version of the Align but the material is less supportive. I definitely favor the Lululemon leggings but these are great to have if you need a more affordable option.
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