You survived life with your firstborn. Your family is growing once again, and so is your to-do list! If you’re like me, you started your registry for your first child at the ripe stage of 12 weeks gestation. I subscribed to Consumer Reports, read all of the parenting blogs and reached out to my experienced mom-friends for advice on the best, most affordable, and most non-toxic products. I wanted everything to be just perfect, to the point where I was a little obsessed with my registry. My husband saw a glimpse of the nutty mom I was slowly morphing into well before my baby bump made its debut.
With baby #2 on the way, things were a little different.
I had a 2-year-old and we were in the midst of moving away from my hometown. I was more concerned about what life with two kids would look like in a city with no family nearby. How would my first daughter respond to a sibling? Where am I going to find new mom friends? And where is the nearest Target!? Needless to say, I was too preoccupied to even consider registering until I was in my third trimester. Once I finally did, I realized we needed many more things than I imagined. Luckily, our circle of people continued to buy things for us even after the baby was born so I had time to finish my list.
Here are 10 must-haves I requested or wished I registered for in advance:
Now that you’ve tried just about every brand and size of diapers, you can add your favorite brand to your registry. Because by now, you realize how costly they can be especially if you’re using disposable, eco-diapers. Even if it’s not the most glamorous item on your list, you will be glad to have a good stock of diapers when baby #2 arrives. Making last-minute runs to the store won’t be as easy as it used to be. And don’t forget the diaper cream! Check out Bambo diapers and Boudreaux’s Butt Paste for our favorite natural options.
2. Baby Toiletries
Whether your first born is still using baby shampoo or matured into another formula, having extra shampoo and body wash will be helpful. Especially if the baby’s bathroom is in a different part of the house. If you’re picky about non-toxic products like we are, adding this to your registry will take the guess work out for your family and friends. Some of our favorite brands are Babyganics and California Baby. Don’t forget sunscreen since it expires every year. Plus, it helps to have tubes in various locations so that you’re never without it! We keep it in the diaper bag, stroller, patio and car. Look for brands with at least 10% zinc oxide and no parabens or oxybenzone, such as Badger. Our babies have sensitive endocrine systems, and even the most harmless products can build up in their little bodies over time.
3. Diaper Bag
Until you have a baby, you never really know what kind of bag you will want or need. At first, I thought backpack diaper bags were kind of hokey. But after lugging around a 20 lb. bag over my shoulder PLUS the carrier, I decided backpack was definitely the way to go. Whatever your style, the contents of your bag will definitely grow with baby #2, so invest wisely in something functional and ergonomic to protect your back. Check out Ju-Ju-Be and Itzy Ritzy for a wide variety of stylish options.
4. Double Stroller/Extra Seat
Depending on the age of your first, you may not need a double stroller. Check your manufacturer’s website to see if your current one is still safe to use. If your stroller is still in good shape and you want to add on, consider buying an additional seat or buggy board. If you choose to invest in a double stroller, consider how much space is in your car and where you will be taking it. There are options for tandem seating or side by side. In my opinion, the Cadillac of all doubles is the Bob!
5. Double Baby Monitor
Most companies offer an extra camera, like the one from Summer Infant. This allows you to switch between your new baby and your oldest using the same monitor. If you’re looking for an upgrade, check out the iBaby camera and iPhone app. This is ideal for working moms with a nanny or families that have large homes because you can see both kids from anywhere on your phone!
6. Favors from you Circle
Whether you live near or far from family, when baby #2 comes, you will need all the help you can get. And when someone offers to bring you a meal or take your oldest for an hour, take it! If you want to compile an organized list of your needs ahead of time, check out meal train. You can request favors such as meals, rides, grocery runs, and other errands. If you have a registry on Amazon, you can register for gift cards from just about any major retailer or restaurant. Don’t be afraid to ask for help — just because you’ve had one kiddo doesn’t make you a “pro” mom. Plus, your workload is about to double!
7. Postpartum Goodies
Does anyone feel like they were not prepared for the discomfort following childbirth after their first was born? This is the one thing I was not ready for after our first daughter was born, and found myself ordering next day shipping online for remedies to help ease my pain. Postpartum goods like bath herbs, bottom sprays, nursing pads, nipple cream, and belly balms make great gifts for any mom. Don’t forget extra nursing bras and t-shirts if you plan to nurse. It can’t hurt to have extra clothes since laundry may take a back seat for awhile.
8. Baby Clothes
Speaking of clothes, do your old baby clothes have stains or holes? Did you have enough newborn outfits to begin with? Even if you are having a same-gender baby, you will likely need more clothes. By now, you’ve probably realized newborns sleep most of the day and live in gowns rather than smocked, cutesy outfits. If you are not finding out the gender, you can register for gift cards to places like H&M, Gap or Carter’s to buy new clothes if you need them.
9. Extra Pieces and Parts
If it’s been a couple years or more since your first, you may need to replace items like bottle nipples, pacifiers and breast pump parts. Plastic and silicone tend to deteriorate over time even when stored properly. Plus, breast pump parts need to be replaced every 3-6 months depending on how often you use them. Check with your insurance company to see if they will cover the cost of your breast pump parts.
10. Swaddles and Burp Cloths
This is something I should have registered for the second time around. Luckily we received a few as gifts anyway, and they have really come in handy! Our 3-year-old is very interested in “swaddling” her own baby dolls. Plus, we use them for more than just swaddling. I think you can never have enough burp cloths lying around. It really helps to have them in multiple rooms so you don’t have to leave your oldest and new baby alone. We like Aiden and Anais.
Have I left anything out? What do you wish you had registered for the first time? Please leave your feedback!