We welcomed three babies into our home in less than two years. While there are still many aspects of parenting that are a constant mystery to me, I feel confident about a few things when it comes to dealing with newborns. Here are my top five tips for making those early weeks run a little more smoothly.
Double-duty on the crib sheets. Buy two mattress covers and always have the two covers and two sets of sheets on the bed. When the top on gets covered in bodily fluids – either at night or during the day when you’re on your own – you’ll appreciate being able to pull it off and have a nice clean sheet already in place. Between one baby with reflux and three in sometimes leaky cloth diapers, this was by far the best baby hack in my arsenal.
One-handed, already prepared food. Stock up on it. I ate a lot of muffins and meat patties with the little ones, especially when I was breastfeeding! Anything you can grab and eat while holding a screaming baby next to your ear. If you’re lucky (like we were), wonderful friends and family who have been through this will bring you frozen foods that are self-contained – think samosas, hard-boiled eggs, quinoa pumpkin bites, etc.
Mini Diaper Station. If your nursery and your living area are on different floors, set up a play pen with a little basket of diapers, etc on the floor you’ll be spending time on – the fewer trips up the stairs with a squirmy infant in your arms, the better.
Get a Glow Baby journal. A lovely little spiral book that helps you keep track of feedings, bowel movements, vitamins, & room to make notes about what you did that day – because in a few days, if not a few hours, you’ll totally forget what happened, when the baby last ate, what side you’re supposed to be offering, etc. (These are usually in stock at Lollipops and Gumdrops in Riverview.)
Think practical, not cute, for clothes. If you’re buying clothes, be sure to look at how it zips/buttons up. Don’t buy a pretty little jumper only to find out it has to be COMPLETELY taken on and off for diaper changes! Also, don’t buy too much clothes; I was shocked when our first outgrew loads of outfits before she was eight weeks old! It never hurts to have a few things in different sizes, though. Wash them and stash them in bins marked by size, so the day you suddenly need something from the 3-6 month category, it’s ready to go & you’re not sifting through piles. Also, the sizes based on weights are the best at being accurate.
Here’s a potential list of baby items you might want to have on hand; not everything here is a MUST, but it’ll give you a place to start. It comes from Grapevine Events, a pop-up consignment sale business that is co-owned by Pickle Planet’s founder.
What are some of the newborn life hacks you swear by? Share them with us in the comments; we love hearing new tips to help parents!