My sweet baby turned 2 last week and I still can’t believe it. I have officially been a mother for 2 years. It has been a whirlwind of ups and downs. I can easily say she is the best thing that I have ever done.
However, I knew nothing about kids or babies before I had her. I was not prepared as much as I thought I was when I brought her home from the hospital. I still feel like no one really tells you how hard it is to bring home a new baby. Boy, did my husband and I learn a thing or two. But it wasn’t easy and a lot of it was just seeing what worked for us.
So, I thought I would share some of the things that were essential in our last two years of keeping our sanity. I was literally that mother that was on Amazon in the middle of the night looking at items to make my life and her life better. I should have bought stock in Amazon that year.
I went through my ordered items over the last two years and compiled the list that was the most life saving. Here is what we bought and what helped us get through:
There are a lot of opinions about sleep monitoring. A lot of pediatricians don’t recommend it. But for me, it was essential to my sanity. I am anxiety driven and I remember texting my girlfriends who had children after my babe was born and asked them how any of them got any sleep. I just sat up and watched her sleep all night to make sure she was still breathing. The Owlet gave me a sense of security and allowed me to get a little bit of rest in between feedings. I loved this for so many reasons. You can read my entire blog post on the Owlet, and why I love it so much here.
So I guess crib bumpers are out. And not just because of fashion, but maybe a little bit. They do seem a little outdated, but I never got bumpers for her crib because again, I was so scared of her suffocating. I learned that it isn’t just about their faces getting buried in the bumper, but by just facing the thick pillow, they are breathing in their carbon dioxide that they are exhaling and that is how they suffocate. I was terrified. So, we never used them. But then my little one and her legs were getting caught in between the crib slots, so this liner was a lifesaver.
I loved this swaddle when she was an infant and mostly for naps. My lil’ one loved to sleep with her arms up, and I knew that swaddling was important, but it allowed her to feel snug and sleep with her arms up in the air.
This is essential to her sleeping. We hired an infant sleep coach when my baby was 5 weeks old and not sleeping longer than few hours over 24 hours. I thought babies slept all the time! As first time parents we didn’t know what she needed. She needed a dark room, sound machine and to be swaddled. We still use the sound machine to this day.
When I was choosing a mattress, organic was super important to me. Babies sleep most of their life the first two years and I just kept imagining her breathing in chemicals all night long. This mattress is amazing. The slip cover has been awesome for accidents and vomit and they have an infant side and toddler side. I love this mattress.
Call me a germ-a-phobe, but I worked at restaurants for years. I know those tables are not really clean. These table mats are awesome. They stick to the table and she loves looking at Minnie.
I never knew these existed, but another mom told me about these and they are essential when your lil’ one starts to crawl. Protects their knees and they are adorable to boot.
Again, I am super germ-a-phobe. I love this thing. It also gives her some padding while sitting in the art at Target for quite some time.
LOVE this sheet. It is so soft. Like your favorite t-shirt soft. And it is organic!
My baby has mad dry skin. Doc told us about this cream and it is AWESOME.
Much needed when my baby had RSV and any other colds. It worked better when she was an infant.
This was essential for us when my baby had acid reflux. I had it right next to our bed and she slept so good in it. Some people say it isn’t for sleeping, but she needed to be elevated. It was awesome.
I still can’t swaddle to save my life. My baby had to be swaddled to sleep. She was sleeping through the night at 5 months. These are dummy proof swaddling.
Those boogies are annoying. Those bulls don’t work. This thing grabs the booger and done and done.
This might be on my top five for best products. My toddler is 2, and she does not know how to wear a blanket. This keeps her warm and I can feel good that she isn’t cold.
This might be obvious to most, but it took another mom telling me to use them that it changed everything. I thought Night diapers were a marketing gimmick. I would just buy a size larger for her to wear at night. That worked for awhile, but then it wasn’t. The mom told me to get Huggies night and the accidents would subside. And they did. I am forever grateful.
Our bathroom with a tub is tiny, so it is hard to navigate. This baby bath is awesome because it has a side for when your baby is a baby, and the other side is for when your baby can sit up. It is extra large too. We still use it sometimes.
We have lever door handles. She started to be able to open the doors at about 15 months. These are awesome because she can’t open doors and they are easily installed and removed.
I got these pajamas the first time from my MIL. They are so awesome. Inexpensive and so cozy and soft, but not too hot. I will only buy these now.
When my babe moved from a soppy cup (that still spilled) I tried every cup out there that promised not to leak or spill. They all did. I found these accidentally at Costco and they are amazing. They do not leak. Now I see them at all play groups.
If you have to do any traveling on a plane. You need this. We didn’t know how to navigate while traveling. Having her in the car seat on the plane made such a better difference than just having her on my lap. But, carrying that car seat is annoying. Get the cart. And you can even strap her in the car seat in the cart and navigate around the airport while carrying all your other crap.
Main photo taken by Bianca Sciotto Photography