Baby Essentials

I’m in the third trimester now with baby number two, and I’ve started to put a lot of thought into preparing for this new little one. Even though my first daughter, Violet, is only two-and-a-half, it’s amazing how quickly you forget about what things are needed/helpful in caring for an infant. When we were pregnant the first time around, we had no clue what to register for. Our registry was largely based on the recommendations of our friends and family who had already had babies. Based on our experience with Violet, here are a few things that would be a must on my registry if I did it all over again:
1. A Video Monitor: With Violet we only used the traditional sound monitor, but if I could do it again I would have chosen a video monitor for sure. After we moved her into her nursery at around three months, I so missed being able to watch her while she was sleeping. Those sweet sleep smiles are so precious and the time is so short! For the new baby I am thrilled that we received the Summer Infant Baby Touch Plus video monitor. We’ve been using it with Violet for a couple of months now and I absolutely love it. The best part is that you can buy an additional video camera and switch back and forth between the two!

2. A Bouncer: This is the only way I was able to get a shower or eat when Violet was an infant. As long as she could see me she was generally fine, so I’d put the bouncer in the bathroom or kitchen with me so that she could hang out as I was showering or preparing a hot meal. If I was just eating something simple like a sandwich the Ergo carrier was a lifesaver as well, but I didn’t trust myself with her in it around a hot stove or oven. If I was registering today I’d choose something simple like this Maclaren bouncer. Violet was never into the toys or vibrating features anyway of our ugly primary colored bouncer anyway.

3. A Nice Diaper Bag: I know some moms manage to get away with a large purse, but for us a separate diaper bag is a must. I prefer to be over prepared rather than under, so I like something I can stuff full of baby clothing, food, and diapers. We went with a cheap one the first time around and it disintegrated pretty quickly. I think for us it would be worth it to buy something better quality that would last the long haul. In my dream world I’d buy this one by Storksak. Since that’s completely out of our budget, I might try out one of Skip Hop’s bags – they’re all adorable and fairly gender neutral.

4. Ergobaby Carrier: Violet was a baby that wanted to be held constantly, so I soon found myself researching baby carriers. By far the best reviews I heard were for the Ergobaby Carrier. I love the infant insert and organic options. I’m so excited to try this out with baby number two!


1. Nursing Pillow: I literally took this with me everywhere. Violet was a very squirmy baby to nurse and she really seemed to settle when she was snuggled on the Boppy. Plus it was a lifesaver for my arms when she got bigger and heavier. And I still love my organic cover.

2. A Cozy Place to Sleep: We had a pack n play for Violet, but with the new baby I’d like something smaller and more portable. I didn’t really end up using the pack n play much because it was so stationary and bulky, and it took up so much space in our house! This Moses basket would be perfect – it’s gorgeous, comfortable for the baby, and portable.

3. Soft Blankets: We used a ton of soft blankets when Violet was an infant – I don’t think you can have too many! I love these organic cotton blankets in adorable patterns and colors by Little Hip Squeaks on Etsy.

4. A Set of Bottles: Whether you’re breastfeeding or bottle feeding, a few nice bottles are a must. You never know when you may want someone else to feed the baby so you get a little break. I love these glass bottles from Lifefactory – they’re safe for baby and come in gorgeous colors.

A-Lovely-Lark-Baby-Essentails-31. Pacifier: We found this to be absolutely essential for Violet and helped to keep her from forming the habit of sucking her thumb. I love this natural and adorable orthodontic version from Hevea.

2. A Space-Saving Bathtub: We don’t have a lot of space to store a giant infant bathtub in our home, so something space-saving is a must. We tried out the Puj tub with Violet, and while we loved it she only fit in it for a few months. I’d like to give this cute collapsible tub from Boon a try this time around.

3. A Good Pump: While I wanted to have milk stored for Violet in case I needed to get away for a little while or (heaven forbid) in case of an emergency, I didn’t want to spend my entire life hooked to a breast pump. The Medela Pump in Style was a nice compact, and most importantly, powerful pump that did the trick in no time flat. (and did you know that with the new Affordable Care Act many insurance companies will be covering the cost of breastfeeding supplies?!)

4. An Adjustable High Chair: We went from a traditional high chair to a booster seat with Violet, but to save the additional item I’d probably go with the Stokke Tripp Trapp if I did it all over again. It’s a little pricey, but well made, versatile, and would look lovely in our dining room.

So there you have it. Of course every baby and every family’s needs are different, so my list may not match yours, but these are the things I would definitely love to have for a new baby.

I’d love to hear – what would be on your must-have list for baby?

This post originally appeared here.

Lauren Hufnagl is a wife and mother of one (and one on the way!) living in Central Pennsylvania. She shares her adventures in renovating and decorating her tiny 1930’s Tudor-style home, DIY projects, and favorite products for little ones over on her blog A Lovely Lark in addition to writing for Apartment Therapy.


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February 4, 2013
February 6, 2013