Now that we are about to have our third and final baby, I finally know what I use and don’t use with my kids (from newborns to up to 4 years old at this point ;)). I’ll share what our must haves are, what we don’t really end up using, and some things that are just nice to have but not necessary. I do prefer a somewhat “minimalist” approach because I just don’t like a lot of clutter or unnecessary expense.
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Swaddles – I swaddle those babies up for calming and sleep. We love the woombie swaddles. They’re stretchy but I haven’t had a baby escape from it yet. I also love that they have a convertible version for transitioning out of the swaddle, but we haven’t used that one. We usually use halo sleepsack swaddles at that point. We do arms out and the velcro wrapped around their chest for comfort.
An alternative to transitioning out of the swaddle is the nested bean sleep sack! It has a little weight in the center that can mimic your heavy hand on their chest. It’s lovely as a swaddle transitioner.
White noise – Ya’ll know I’m all about that white noise for my babies. There’s research that proves everyone sleeps better with it; it decreases the amount of time it takes to fall asleep, increases the amount of time in deep, restful sleep, and decreases the amount of time it takes to transition sleep cycles. Win, win, win. Your baby just came from a very loud womb. Like 80 decibels loud. That’s louder than your vacuum. So don’t be afraid to crank that white noise up. Plus with other noisy toddlers and dogs in the house, nothing ruins my day more than a baby being woke up unnecessarily. Nope, I’m not about that life! We love our Lectrofans from Sound of Sleep. They’ve held up this entire time with no single issue.
Pack and play – Honestly, I don’t do the whole rock n play thing, at least not for long term, I don’t do dock a tots (another post, another time before I step on that soapbox!), I don’t do fancy bassinets. They sleep on a flat surface so that they learn that’s their sleep space and I don’t have to get them used to sleeping on a flat surface later. I’d rather put in a little work now as opposed to fighting the transition later. When they’re super tiny, I’ll put them closer to the mesh sides of the pnp so that they don’t feel like they’re in a large place all by themselves.
Graco Dreamglider swing – We tried the mamaroo. Neither kid liked it. So for this go around, I’ll be purchasing a swing for a living room so that the baby has a place to hang out and not get run over by other littles. This one lays flat so I can lay it back if I can’t supervise their sleep.
Baby carrier – I’m purchasing a soft wrap for this baby, hopefully some sort of ring sling. But we also love our Lillebaby all seasons for structured carriers! It’s great for that evening fussy time when you’ve got dinner to cook and not enough hands to do it. Plus, we can’t be tied down at home with 2 other littles, so it’s great for napping on the go.
Video monitors – They’re not “must haves” for everyone, but they are in our family. We sleep with our doors closed (fire safety) and everyone has white noise. Plus, our dogs sleep in our room too. So we would not hear a single thing from either of our kids without the video monitor!
Sleepers/Pajamas – Our babies all have sensitive skin and eczema at some point, so we are big believers in high quality fabric to make sure they’re comfortable! We also live in pajamas in our house, so they need to last. We love our bamboo sleepers from Kyte Baby! You can use the code “HEAVENSENTSLEEP15” for 15% off your purchase now through March!
Blackout EZ curtains – These are SO easy to apply and remove. Looks much better than aluminum foil on our windows! And I’m all about that “cave-like” room for great sleep!
Slumberpods – We travel a lot. Instead of having to carry our trusted black garbage bags and painters tape, we can throw a pack n play into the slumber pod and have a blacked out, separate space for the little one when we have to room share. Totally amazing for those out of town weekends! I also highly recommend these if you’ll be roomsharing long term and/or if you have difficulty blacking out your room (ridiculous amounts of windows, etc) Use the code “HEAVENSENT10” for $10 off your purchase!
What we didn’t need:
Diaper changing table & pad – We used it some with the first and none with the second! We live in a two story home and I knew I’d never go upstairs just to change a diaper. So they get changed on a blanket on the floor 9/10 times!
Jumper/bouncy seat/walkers: Since they’re not supposed to spend much time in those things anyway, they just took up space and gave me anxiety by crowding my living room. LOL. We just prefer to let them have floor time!
Snuza – It was nice to have because Hannah had to move out of our room sooner that I would’ve preferred. But the false alarms were so annoying! She was so mobile that she’d wiggle so much, it wouldn’t stay in the right place. And then it’d wake her. Nope, no thanks.
Diaper pail – We were totally fine without this and have never used one for either kid. We live downstairs basically except for sleep pretty much, so we just threw them in the trash cans outside. Easy enough for us!
What’s nice to have:
A baby bath tub – I wouldn’t call this a must, but we definitely used it for their weekly baths until they were rolling.
A floor play mat – My kids have always liked the little play mats with lights and little hanging toys. Now that it’s the third kid though, I’m thinking big siblings may be more entertaining!
A stroller fan attachment! We live in Texas and it gets WARM. We are out a lot, especially in the summer with 2 littles so it was really nice to have a little fan attached to the stroller to keep them cool!
BittaKidda sleep sacks – They have a lovey attached to them so they’re safe for sleeping. They’re amazing when working on independent sleeping skills!