I went to a baby shower this weekend. I sat at a table of seasoned moms, and when it came time for the mom-to-be to open presents, the stories and product reviews poured out of us.
I try not to hold too much stock in mom reviews. As I’ve learned, every mom and baby is different. There are certain products that work for one mom and fail for another. Just as there are particular parenting approaches that might please one mom while frustrating another to tears. But there seem to be a few items or steps that are coveted and universally cheered on.
So here, in no particular order, is a list of must-have/must do for expecting moms or newly minted mommies.
- Fisher Price Rock n Play Sleeper: Listen, there are all sorts of versions of this contraption on the Internet and at every baby store. The first time I was pregnant I didn’t register for it. A few weeks into the mom game and I borrowed one from my sister-in-law. For round two, I had to return the rock n play and found myself once again going rogue. One day my dad purchased me a fancy version of the rock n play, which could be controlled by my phone. My sweet girl slept seven hours that night, and I prayed in gratitude for the souls responsible for its invention.
- Some type of baby carrier and/or wrap. It’s all about individual choice and comfort when it comes to a carrier or wrap. When my girls were little I used the Boba wrap to keep them close and enjoy hands-free tasks. I also invested in a Tula, which as they grow and gain makes for back-friendly carrying. The advice here is simple: try various brands and styles on to see what works best for you.
- Some type of portable noise machine. I love babies and their ability to sleep anywhere. But, life is noisy, especially with multiple kids and various destinations. This past fall I had to attend a meeting with my little one during her naptime. While not ideal, I plainned for her to nap on the go. The baby susher saved me and was the envy of my fellow mamas.
There’s tons of lists, must-haves, and possibilities for moms and their babes. Ultimately, my friends and I agree that the most important things are an open mind, positive attitude and support system. Moming is challenging, creative, fun, exhausting, and full of twists and turns. Whether it’s a cup of coffee with a girlfriend, playdate, meal, or simple text cheering one another on, it helps to support and surprise one another with random acts of kindness.
From this mom to you, keep on going. For me, the most important thing isn’t a product or piece of advice, it’s seeing strong women show me that each path we pave with our children is meaningful and makes a difference.