Navigating the world of taking care of a newborn has been a whirlwind to say the least. I pride myself on being a very “go with the flow” person, but the lack of schedule and routine has really thrown me for a loop–a big one. When you mix a little person who can only cry to communicate with a set of new parents who don’t know what they’re doing, you get chaos.
Serious, unapologetic chaos.
These past three weeks have felt like a year (particularly since I forget what day it is half of the time), but I can give credit to five items for seriously keeping my sanity in check.
We use our Boppy Newborn Lounger day and night. The minute we swaddled Baby Ayden and put him in our Mika Mikey bassinet, he rolled over onto his side and seriously scared the mess out of both of us. For peace of mind, and because we had seen him placed in a similar position in the hospital PICU, we put the Newborn Lounger in the bassinet to stabilize him and ensure he slept on his back. Now, we know it is recommended that absolutely nothing is in the bed with your newborn, however we did vet this plan first with our pediatrician and she cleared its use.
The Mika Mickey Bedside Sleeper has been a game changer for us. I love that we have the option to secure and attach it to the bed, or we can have it moved about the room as it is on wheels (similar functionality to the bassinets that are used in the hospital). When our parents come in to town to help take care of Ayden, we can simply roll the Mika Mickey Bedside Sleeper to the guest room so they’re all good to go (no additional or excessive set up). I can also just wheel this into, or just outside of, our master bath so I can keep an eye on him while I get ready for the day.
Talk about a nap life saver! We were constantly placing our little one in our Boppy Newborn Lounger, but we felt like we should change it up for naps during the day (…just making an assumption that sleeping in the same position for 16-18 hours a day could get old). I wanted to find a piece that could automatically swing in both directions, but more importantly I wanted a swing that closely mimicked the rocking motion I would make when Ayden was in my arms. The Graco Duetsoothe Swing + Rocker has been perfect for longer, morning naps. I can place him in the swing after our morning diaper change and feeding, and can take care of daily morning tasks like cleaning and prepping bottles for the day.
One of the most important newborn care facts you’ll learn is that newborn babies love to be swaddled–and by swaddled we mean wrapped SUPER tight in a lightweight blanket.
Like so tight they should look like the cutest little baby burrito.
Now, getting the basics of swaddling down isn’t too bad, it’s swaddling when you have a crying, wriggling little baby and you somehow seem to never have enough fabric to lock the sucker in. I can honestly say I’ve never had this problem with my Aden & Anais muslin swaddles. These things are lightweight, perfectly square in shape (which is crucial), and are oversized. You always have plenty of fabric to wrap around a growing baby and their print selection is super cute. These swaddles come in packs of two to four, and I would honestly add a minimum of three packs to your baby registry. We’ve used them as changing table covers, a coverup for a breastfeeding session, and alternatives to receiving blankets.
Our Chicco Pack n Play has literally become the new focal point of our living room (bye bye cute Chip & Jo-inspired decor, hello baby supply explosion). We keep our pack n play downstairs and use it for the majority of Ayden’s naps. It also has a handy dandy diaper caddy attached to the side so we use it as a home base for our downstairs baby supplies. During the day, we’ve been placing our Boppy Newborn Lounger on the pack n play mattress for Ayden’s naps (particularly the late afternoon and evening naps). It came with four detachable components: a diaper caddy, a changing station, a mobile with sound machine functionality, and a baby lounger. So far, we have yet to use the changing station as we purchased a separate changing table for the living room, but Ayden is starting to gain weight and roll over so I’m betting he’ll outgrow the changing table within the next month. The pack n play changing station is definitely larger, so it’s nice to have that on-hand for future months.
These bad boys literally saved our lives on our second night with Ayden. On night two, he decided to show us just how loud he could cry and scream. Holy moly…we were not ready. At the time, I was breastfeeding and was super hesitant about giving him a pacifier–didn’t want to cause nipple confusion–but everything turned out just fine! As the nurse at the hospital told me, if you need it use it!
These five items have been clutch for our newborn, but every child is different. Locking down what worked for us took a lot of trial and error–mainly lots of error to be frank. To be honest, we’re still trying out new products and working on what really works for Ayden. There are so many amazing products on the market so never lose hope (for those with a newborn, you know what I mean!).
There’s a high possibility that what really works the best for you and your newborn is skin-to-skin time or simply soothing your baby in your arms. Just know that’s perfectly ok! Stay strong, power through, and remember–your little one loves you!
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