When you are a new parent (or about to become one) there’s an overwhelming amount of stuff to buy. Article upon article, post upon post, list upon list, unsolicited piece of advice upon unsolicited piece of advice.
It can become super difficult to decide what are actual must-haves and things you can and will live without quite happily.
There are the no brainer items that you genuinely have to have.
Then there are the gorgeously impractical and useless things you again, have to have (Try telling a heavily pregnant woman ‘no’)
Then there are the things your best friend’s mother’s aunt’s sister SWEARS by that you simply, have to have.
Luckily for us, there are millions of lists dictating exactly what falls into these categories. So, to add to the wonderfulness of the internet, I am throwing my own list in to the must-have mix.
As you probably figured out by the title of this post, these are the 4 unexpected must-haves that genuinely saved my first time momma butt. These are things that you never know you need until you need them (and trust me, you will need at least one of the items listed below)
Let me start by saying, I am in no way affiliated with any of the products or brands I’m about to list (I wish ha ha!) I am just sharing my first-hand account and experiences with these products that seriously made a difference in the lives of a new baby and new parent.
Snuggletime Breastfeeding Pillow
Ah, I get happy just thinking about this God-send of an item. I mean it. It was something I never thought would make my ‘Must Have’ list. At my baby-shower, I received four breastfeeding pillows. FOUR. Two brand new ones and two second hand ones, and I must admit at the time I was genuinely baffled. Like, what in high heavens am I going to do with four breastfeeding pillows?
Turns out, EVERYTHING!
So, I was a bit of a cheeky and opened one before Arabella even arrived. I had been having such missions getting comfy enough to even make falling asleep a hint of a possibility, that I decided to try one out. Mother! The way I snuggled into this thing was borderline pornographic. I’m pretty sure that in my last week of pregnancy my body and the pillow had merged into one comfortable blob.
So, I used the pillows as a snuggly body pillow type thing to help me and my big pregnant self get some all important sleep.
The pillows were also used for their primary purpose – breastfeeding. It was so easy to lay the little lady down on one and let her suckle happily away. Plus, it maximized snuggling.
We used them as support for other people to be more comfortable holding her.
We used them as wedges when she was a bit older to stop her from rolling over in her sleep.
We used them as sitting support aids when she was working those tummy muscles.
We used them as selfish parents to be comfier on the couch.
Now, we use them as almost like a bumper in her cot, so she doesn’t stick her limbs through the bars.
Should I ever pop another munchkin out, and if mine don’t survive till then, this will be at the top of my list.
If you want to do yourself a favour and get your pregnant-lady-hands on one, you can do so right here https://www.babycity.co.za/product/snuggletime-snuggle-pillow/
So, I didn’t ever actually use a towelling nappy as a towelling nappy.
And yet I always seem to be buying more.
These things are tiny little lifesavers.
They can be used as, well, obviously, a nappy. To clean up spills and messes, as an actual towel to dry baby after bath time, as a burp cloth, as an impromptu changing station cover (super handy when using public changing stations), as a wash cloth and when baby outgrows the need for all of the above, they are just super duper handy to have in your drawer.
Looking back (and at my disposable nappy receipts!) I actually wish I used towelling nappies for so many reasons, one of which being the gorgeous covers you have access to!
If you do decide to be a towelling nappy super mom check out this awesome article by Parent24 for handy tips, tricks and helpful information https://www.parent24.com/Baby/Babycare/Cloth-diapers-101-20150114
You can buy towelling nappies pretty much anywhere, but if you want to grab some ADORABLE cloth nappy covers like the one featured below, look no further than the aptly named Fancypants https://fancypantsproducts.co.za/
I am super lucky because in this department, I had my very own mitten-maker and didn’t spend a cent (Thank you GG!)
Mittens were something I never gave much thought to as they seemed quite old-fashioned and well, this is South Africa (emphasis on the ‘Africa’ part) and I am so thankful that my granny did the thinking for me.
Firstly, it is effing freezing in Johannesburg during winter.
Secondly, I had one of those strange babies that enjoyed trying to gauge her eyes out at every available opportunity.
We used the mittens to keep Arabella’s little icicle fingers warm and as a hand jail to stop her from causing bodily harm to herself (what a weirdo)
Plus the time and effort that her GG put into them, is reflected in these woollen lovelies – and it is a highly sentimental keepsake that I look forward to keeping in a box somewhere.
Again, you can buy mittens pretty much anywhere but if you would like a pair made for you by my very own wonderfully talented granny, feel free to pop me a private message and us momma’s will ‘maak ‘n plan’
Snuggletime Safety Nest (Co-sleeper)
Funnily enough, co-sleeping is something I swore I would never do (see how much changes when your monkey actually arrives!) because of the horror stories you hear and read about. I was struggling with the whole ‘getting out of bed’ part of night feeds and the transition from cot to bed was so natural that I haven’t regretted it for a second.
In the first few nights, as easy as the move made feeding, we were living with an intense amount of fear and paranoia that we would roll over and smush our kid. I voiced these fears to my Aunty Jax and she remembered she actually had a proper co-sleeper from when she had my gorgeous cousin Connor-bum and we slept soundly from the moment we received this glorious little thing.
There is little to no risk of smothering your baby, because this block like contraction is difficult to not feel (when you do accidentally roll onto it and wake with pain – thanks for being our own test subject Daddydaims!)
Also, what is super awesome about this specific co-sleeper is that it folds up into a neat little carrier which is incredibly convenient when you are on the go.
As it turns out, after having a quick look at the tag, the co-sleeper that saved us and gave us some extra precious snooze time, is also a Snuggletime product. (You can get yours here https://www.babycity.co.za/product/snuggletime-safety-nest/) Gosh, I really am starting to sound like a bit of a brand ambassador here, but as a mom you will probably find the perfect brand for you and your lil one and stick to it.
And there you have it, the unexpected must-haves I could not do without and will definitely be gracing the list of essential buys should I pop another baby out.