I am getting ready to have my fourth (FOURTH!) baby. And no matter how much experience I’ve had in this department, I always get nervous the closer the due date gets. What will it be like bringing another baby home? How will the other kids adjust? How will we get through those first few months when we are barely sleeping, but we also need to be functioning members of society? Do I have everything the baby will need so we are as prepared as possible?
The easiest question to answer is the last. The baby gear list is always an evolving list as new things come out everyday, but I definitely know which items are “must haves” and I want to share them with you! Listen to me. I’m a bit of an expert in this area.
Diaper Bag- It doesn’t matter if this is your first or 10th baby, you will want as many hands free as possible and the diaper bag out of your way. So listen to me when I say, “Get this backpack diaper bag!” This look is also a nice neutral look that doesn’t scream “DIAPER BAG” and will look good on Dad too. It has a ton of pockets and storage and is completely machine washable. I bought this one with our littlest and it is still in great condition 2 years later. It will be our sole diaper bag for baby #4.
Diapers- Pampers Swaddlers are my favorite diapers for newborns. They are super soft and are great at preventing against leaks. Every time I take these diapers out of the box in preparation for a new baby, my heart pitter-patters over their sweet little size.
Clothes- Baby Gap has always been my go to for baby clothes. Their sleepers are some of my favorites. They are super soft, wash well and whether you go with the zipper versions (easiest) or snap up versions (much easier than other companies’ versions as they have a gold snap that tells you where the middle is), you are going to love them.
Bottles- I used different bottles with my first two babies, but they were a pain as I felt they just had too many parts to wash and keep track of. I really like the Tommy Tippy Closer to Nature bottles. They only have 3 pieces and the transition back and forth from breast to bottle was painless. I recommend purchasing the 9 ounce bottles versus the smaller sizes. You will only be in the smaller versions for a short amount of time.
Dishwasher Basket- It is so nice not having to worry about a bottle piece disappearing during your dishwasher’s wash cycle. Oh the little things that make me happy.
Pacifiers- My kiddos were never fans of the pacifiers that you get at the hospital. They always had the hardest time keeping them in. These pacifiers worked with my three which made nights and naps a wee bit easier.
Bibs- With bibs, it is important to get ones that you can simply wipe clean so you are not having to do a load of just bibs a day. Trust me, you will have enough laundry to do. These wipe up easily and have a little pocket to catch stray crumbs. Also, just a PSA, make sure to velcro the back together before doing laundry so they don’t get caught in any of the other clothes.
Burp Cloths- I have been using Gerber flannel burp cloths since baby number 1 and I will still be using them with baby number 4. They are super soft, absorbent and don’t tear or fray like other burp cloths. They also wash beautifully.
Baby Bedding- For our oldest, I had bought bedding from Babies-R-Us. It turned out to be too bulky and not very comfortable. For our second oldest, I fell in love with a design from Restoration Hardware. When it arrived, I was not happy with the quality and part of it unraveled the first time I washed it. With our third, I bought the Rivulets Toddler Quilt in peach from Anthropolgie and absolutely fell in love. The details, the softness, the quality, the super feminine design…it is all wonderful.
Crib- We bought a beautiful crib and dresser set from a local store in St. Louis, but it is no longer in business. I love the set and, if it was still made today, I would definitely be recommending it. Outside of the quality and design, I also love that the headboard can be used on a full bed and it doesn’t look like it was originally a crib. Here is an example of one that would work like this.
Rocking Chair- Again, our upholstered rocking chair was also bought from that local store mentioned above that is no longer in business. If I was shopping today, I would definitely check out PBK’s selection. Opt for the performance fabrics. You can probably guarantee you will have spilled milk/formula and spit up accidents in your future.
Swing– We bought our swing two years ago and our version is no longer made, but this one is also by Fisher-Price and very similar. I love that you can rock baby both front to back and side to side. It is easy to clean up and so cuddly. It was actually the only place our youngest would nap for her first 4 months!
Rock-N-Play- This is the NUMBER 1 thing I recommend to parents-to-be. It is a seat and sleeper all in one. It folds up quickly and is easy to carry from room to room. At night it goes into our room and it is where our babies sleep for their first few months. I love that it makes them feel snuggled and allows them to sleep at a bit of an incline.
White Noise Machine- This was a new addition with our 3rd baby and I love it! I originally bought it to help drown out our other two kiddos during baby’s nap time, but over time, the sound has become baby’s signal that it is time to go to sleep. It has been a great investment.
Baby Monitor- If you look on Amazon, this baby monitor has over 22,000 reviews! It is super popular and with good reason. It works so well, is easy to use and has a clear picture. I also love the fact that it tells the temperature of baby’s room as our nursery tends to be one of the warmest rooms in the house.
Baby Bath- I have used this baby bath since baby number 2. It has 3 reclining options, can be used in the sink or tub, is machine washable and cradles baby. It also folds up for easy storage which is a rare thing when it comes to baby baths.
Bath Towel- These are my absolute favorite bath towels. They are so soft and absorbent while keeping baby nice and warm after bath time. They are also adorable with the little ears!
Stroller/Infant Seat- If you are looking for a stylish, easy to maneuver and fold stroller, this one by Britax is for you! I love how easy it is to steer and it is great over bumpy sidewalks. The car seat has worked well for us and pops in and out of both the base and the stroller very easily.
Double Stroller- I am sooo excited about this stroller. I knew I needed something that would work with both my newborn and toddler. I didn’t want a standard side-by-side as they are too wide and I also wanted something that I could use with an infant carrier and then to have 2 regular stroller seats as the baby got bigger. And the Baby Jogger 2016 City Select Stroller is the answer to my prayers! There are 16 different configurations! I can have the littlest two face almost every which way and it collapses beautifully. I am just so excited to use this for morning walks!
Convertible Car Seat- The Graco 4Ever 4-in-1 Convertible Car Seat is so wonderful. It is easy to get our daughter in and out of, comfortable and has 2 cup holders which is important. We actually have two of these, one for my husband’s car and one for mine. It is a really great product.
Ergobaby Carrier- I did not “wear” my first two babies. I tried a carrier that I registered for on a whim, but it wasn’t comfortable and I only used it twice. With baby number 3, my sister-in-law Kelly (she is also a Stickers and Stilettos author!) gave me hers that her 4 babies lived in for their first year of life. I will admit, I was a bit of a skeptic. But my darling Eloise was such a fussy baby, never seeming content unless she was held by me, that I had to start wearing her to be able to get anything done around the house. So shortly into her first month, I strapped it on and…OMG! It was life-changing. I definitely recommend this to any momma out there. Thanks Kel! The exact model I have is no longer available, but I’ve linked the original Ergobaby carrier. Kel also gave me the infant insert to use which is great for the first few months when baby is super tiny.
Solly Baby Wrap- Ok. So this one has not been tested out by me. I purchased it a few weeks after finding out we were expecting baby number 4. I LOVE baby wearing due to my hand-me-down Ergobaby carrier, so I wanted to try this out as well. I had heard such great things from friends and mommas I follow on Instagram, so I am super excited to try it. I bought the classic wrap in Flax.
Nursing Cover- You will love this style of nursing cover by Covered Goods. You can spend those precious moments nursing baby without worrying about feeling exposed. It covers all around your front and back which is important and also converts to a cover for your carseat, carrier, and shopping cart seat. It is available in a bunch of cute designs so take your pick!
Breast Pump- This pump worked great for me and is so dependable. It can either plug in or run on batteries, which is super convenient. My sister-in-law used hers with all 4 of her kiddos (a year each!) and it was still running like a champ when she was done.
Breastmilk Catcher- Not going to lie here. The Milkies Milk Saver seemed so strange to me when I first saw it. I knew when I nursed, I always lost some milk on the side opposite baby, but I had never thought much about it. I am, however, someone that doesn’t have a huge milk supply. I fight for every single drop of milk. And if you nurse, you know that breastmilk is basically liquid gold! So the first time I used this with baby number three and collected a full ounce of milk that would have normally gone to waste, it blew my mind! This is a must-have for nursing mamas.
SwaddleMe Swaddles- Looking for a different, nontraditional way to swaddle? These velcro swaddle blankets make swaddling easy and ensure that baby’s swaddle won’t come undone, allowing her to startle herself awake.
That is the end of my list. Happy shopping and best of luck with your new bundle!