6 things you didn’t know you needed for your new baby
Now that my second child is nearly 5 months old, I’m wiping the sweat from my forehead and wondering where the first half-year went?! She rolls around, sings a warbly “ahahahahaa” for me and her dad, and genuinely wins all of our hearts. Aside from her being a girl and needing girly-type clothes (which I didn’t endorse at first, until my sister-in-law’s retort the constant blues, greens, and browns: “I’m all for thrift, but this is getting ridiculous”), I didn’t think I really would need anything for #2 (heretofore known as “little R”).
But, lo and behold, the wallet had to open and the online purchases began anew. Because who has time to go to Babies ‘R’ Us? And a few items became added to the queue which I just didn’t realize would happen:
1) Silicone bottle nipples – Unless it’s been a scant few months between your last use of baby bottles, you’ve probably noticed the flexible bottle parts in your collection can get cracked, split, or generally distasteful, leading to a need to replenish certain items. But, like me, you may have thought that everything was hunky dory when you saw a slight yellowish cast to the silicone nipples and other bottle parts. Hopefully you didn’t think like I did and try to salvage these disasters. As it turns out, silicone breaks down more quickly than I thought, and once the bottle parts – most often nipples from bottles or pacifiers – become slightly yellow, the silicone is on the way to breaking down. Next it gets sticky and more yellowish, and the stickiness (as I came to realize), does not resolve with 2 handwashes and 11 runs through the dishwasher. I’m a persistent recycler, but with your new baby, it’s time to throw out the old bottle nipples and get some new ones.
2) Sleep sacks – with my first baby I gave up on swaddling pretty quickly – he broke out the swaddle right away and from a few months into life was sleeping very close and cuddly with mama. Well, as it turns out, my second baby also tried to break out of her swaddles, but I decided to persevere in this case and found that even though she was also a mover, she liked being squeezed tight and I ended up buying a special type of sleep sack to help keep her arms in but which was also flexible to the contours of her body. This definitely helped turn her into a 4 or 5 hour sleeper.
3) New clothes for mama – now that it has been several years – almost 4, to be exact, since I’ve been in tasteful non-maternity big mama clothes, my wardrobe is woefully out of date and any pieces to which I am particularly attached are pilling like crazy. And my skinny mama clothes are far from being wearable, as I am now convinced that I may never be able to fit into them again. So I’m treating myself, buying some nice looking clothing that will be suitable for work and not feeling guilty that one day it may not fit me the same. Gotta wear something now so might as well look decent and love what I got that’s not going anywhere yet! Now – quick plug which I won’t link to – I just signed up for Stitch Fix and am really enjoying the new duds! Cool choices and a nice surprise in the mail every so often!
4) Extra diapers / replacement parts for cloth diapers – Unfortunately, elastic ain’t what it used to be anymore. I have things made with elastic from 1992 which are in great shape and for some crazy reason a lot of my more recently elasticized stuff gets worn out often – translate, cloth diapers cannot hold anything anymore and are very stretched, and this is only for child #2. Unfortunately I’m not a great seamstress so the worn diapers are sitting in a drawer awaiting repairs and new elastic. But to ease the tide I purchased a few new diaper covers and, let’s face it, while having a full time job and two kids, well, cloth diapering has become less of a priority (though still is being used by me, if not by the rest of the family). So this also meant buying a boatload of (ugh) disposables – for daycare and for hubbie. Oh well, I’ll keep working on this one!
5) New Medicines Check the labels on your bottles, folks, because chances are that the acetaminophen and ibuprofen and vitamin D drop sand who knows what else are, that’s right, expired. And (like us) you will probably have that day when your 2+-month-old child gets a fever and you are plum out of medicine that you are willing to give your kiddie. And we had a lot of other things to hunt down as well, which fortunately we didn’t have to repurchase – like the thermometer for instance. Another essential.
6) New Breast Pump and Accessories At first I intended not to get a replacement breast pump; mine seemed to be working fine and I didn’t want to be wasteful, but with the Affordable Care Act it is now mandated that women be provided breast pumps through their insurance plan, and if you want to buy into this offering you must order the pump within 30 days of delivery. This meant that, if my old pump were to conk out today for instance, a new one would not be covered. So for that extra peace of mind I ordered a new pump, which ended up being very convenient because now I have extra pump parts as well so that I have a little less dishwashing to do!
Fortunately outside these items the list of purchases for the new baby (outside of clothing needs for a girl) is small, and when she was VERY tiny we were able to use a lot of the clothing we already had. It is nice that we got a lot of neutral linens/onesies for her as a youngster since that didn’t have to be replaced. And though I’m tempted to to go to the children’s stores and look for all the latest gadgets for kiddies (and there are many), my wallet is happy that I’m trying to open it a little less!