What you really need for life with a baby

What you really need for baby


The baby item industry can make it seem like you need everything under the sun to care for your baby. That their product with make life with a newborn just a little bit easier, a little more manageable.

The truth is the list of what a baby needs is actually very small. Of course there are some items that are essential, but a lot can be purchased later when you’ve settled into motherhood and gotten to know what items will work best for you and your baby.

So what do you need right away? What are some things that are nice to have? What can wait?

Essentials before baby comes:

  • A safe place for baby to sleep. This can range to anything from a  crib to a bassinet to bed sharing ( a post on safe bed sharing is coming soon!). It’s currently recommend that babies sleep in their parents room for the first 6 months.
  • Infant or convertible car seat
  • Diapers
  • Some newborn and 0-3 months onesies and sleepers
  • Feeding items. If you plan to breastfeed it’s great to have lanolin on hand. If you’re formula feeding have ready-made formula and bottles.
  • Baby Blankets
  • Burp Cloths
  • Healthy Snacks

Nice to haves before but can be bought after baby is here:

I found a lot of items below vary by family (for example my babies took baths with me) If you have friends with babies you can always ask to borrow some items to make sure babies likes it before investing. What one baby loves another may hate.

  • A stroller or baby carrier.
  • Swing or bouncy chair
  • Breast Pump
  • Pacifiers
  • Rocking Chair
  • Bath Items
  • Baby Monitor
  • Change Table

What you don’t need:

  • Wipe warmer
  • Fancy breastfeeding pillows
  • Crib bumper and quilt
  • Nursing Cover
  • Bottle sterilizer
  • Bottle warmer


Is there anything you couldn’t live without when you had your baby?  What do you think all new families should have on hand when they welcome a baby?



Your Hospital Bag

A big question a lot of moms ask is what should I pack in my hospital bag?


I am a planner and an over packer so trying to narrow down what I needed proved to be very difficult. I can tell you though that while having a hospital bag is great, there’s not a lot you really need, that the hospital won’t have or that someone can’t grab for you after. What you want and what you use will also largely depend on how your birth goes. Being induced or having a c-section can mean you use things that you wouldn’t it you have a quick birth and recovery.

I’m also separating this into 3 bags. 1 for you, 1 for your support person and 1 for baby.

Your Bag

  • Clothes to Birth in. This can be anything from a nursing bra to a t-shirt. Did you know you don’t have to give birth in the hospital gown? As long as you have easy access to your back for a epidural should you want one you can wear your own clothes or your own gown. Just make sure it’s something you’re ok getting ruined.
  • Socks
  • Hair Elastics
  • Lip balm
  • Unscented lotion (you never know if a certain smell with bother you in birth)
  • Bathing suit top if you want to get in the shower or tub
  • Nursing tanks or bras
  • Clothes to come home in
  • Breastfeeding Pillow
  • Nursing Pads
  • Toiletries
  • Birth Preferences
  • Depends (the hospital will give you mesh undies, people love or hate them. I found depends to be the best)

If you’re being induced or having a c-section you may want some items to keep you busy. A book, your tablet or some music.

Partner Bag

  • Change for vending machine
  • Snacks
  • Phone Charger
  • Camera
  • Bathing Suit in case mom wants your support in the shower

Baby Bag

  • Blankets. The hospital provides these but you may want your own
  • Clothes for baby 2-3 sleepers or outfits
  • Car seat