This Stuff Matters…

Nursery Furniture

The necessities:

  • Crib or co-sleeper
  • Crib mattress

If it fits in the budget:

  • Changing table
  • Bassinet (though it’s only safe until 3 months or 15 pounds)
  • Rocking chair or glider
  • Humidifier or vaporizer
  • Dresser/chest
  • Hamper
  • Baby monitor (if you have a big house)

Baby Linens

The necessities:

  • 1 fitted crib sheets
  • Several thin cotton receiving blankets
  • 1 waterproof mattress protectors

If it fits in the budget:

  • Matching quilt or a crib skirt (they’re only decorative)

Babyproofing Gear

The necessities (after 4 months):

  • Gates at the top and bottom of all stairs
  • Cabinet latches
  • Drawer latches
  • Outlet covers
  • Fireplace bumper
  • Furniture anchors
  • Corner guards for low tables

If it fits in the budget:

  • Toilet lock

Formula Feeding Gear

The necessities:

  • 3+ or so bottles with newborn nipples (try Dr. Browns, most recommended)
  • Bottle-cleaning brush or a dishwasher basket
  • Several weeks’ worth of baby formula to start
  • 3+ or more cotton bibs
  • 3+ or more burp cloths (cloth diapers do the job)

If it fits in the budget:

  • Bottle sterilizer
  • cooler/warmer for on-the-go events

Breastfeeding Gear

The necessities:

  • Nursing pillow
  • 2+ nursing bras
  • 2+ boxes of nursing pads
  • 2+ or more cotton bibs
  • 3+ or more burp cloths (cloth diapers do the job)

If it fits in the budget:

  • Breast pump (electric if you’ll use it every day at work, otherwise a hand pump is fine)
  • Breast milk storage bags or containers
  • Nipple cream (for the first few weeks)

Solid-food Feeding Gear

The necessities (not an issue until 4 to 6 months):

  • High chair
  • Plastic bibs
  • Infant feeding spoons/Infant bowl

Diaper Gear

The necessities:

  • 6+ packs of newborn diapers to start
  • Wipes (sensitive skin/no scent)
  • Waterproof changing table pad
  • Ointment for rash
  • 2+ changing table pad covers (usually cotton or terry cloth)
  • Diaper pail or trash can with a lid

If it fits in the budget:

  • Baby cream (if your baby has dry skin)

Bathing and Grooming Gear

The necessities:

  • 2 hooded towels
  • 4 washcloths
  • Infant tub
  • Baby bath wash
  • Baby shampoo
  • Baby comb and brush set
  • Nail scissors/nail clippers/nail file set

If it fits in the budget:

  • Bath toys (3+months)
  • Mesh bag to hold bath toys
  • Bath thermometer
  • Faucet guard

Baby Clothing

The necessities:

  • 5+ or more snap-crotch bodysuits/onesies
  • 3+ T-shirts and/or side-snap shirts
  • 5+ pairs of pajamas and/or sleeping gowns
  • Cold/hot-weather hat
  • 6 pairs of socks
  • Baby hangers for the closet (10+)

If it fits in the budget:

  • A special outfit to bring baby home in and/or show her off
  • Several diaper covers
  • 2+ Blankets

Travel Gear

The necessities:

  • Car seat
  • Stroller
  • Diaper bag

If it fits in the budget:

  • Rain cover for the stroller
  • Sunshades for the car windows
  • Front carrier, like a Snugli or Baby Bjorn

First Baby Toys

No necessities, but it’s nice to have:

  • Rattles
  • Plastic links
  • Soft blocks
  • Activity gym/play mat
  • Toys that attach to the stroller

Baby Seats

The necessities:

  • Bouncer seat or infant seat
  • Stationary activity center (once baby is 4 months old)
  • Heavy blankets and quilts to lay on the floor

If it fits in the budget:

  • Swing

Baby Care Basics

The necessities:

  • Several pacifiers
  • Thermometer
  • Petroleum jelly
  • Infant Tylenol
  • Nasal aspirator