Tag Archives: pregnancy

Buying for baby: the ultimate (short)list

19 Nov

Baby in supermarketApologies to anyone visiting the blog expecting my usual mix of wit (snigger), intellectual banter (guffaw) and insightful opinion (falls off chair laughing). What you will find instead is a list that includes things that you do with your boobs and stuff you pop in your pants. Still here? Well then you must be a parent-to-be.

Over two pregnancies I’ve honed a list of what (I think) should be on every new parent’s shopping list, including what you should pack in the god-like object that is your hospital bag. I’ve cut the crap (you’ll have plenty of that when the tiny pooping machine arrives and who needs a top and tail bowl anyway) leaving what should near-as-damned be the ultimate, honed list of what you really need to buy before a baby arrives. I’d love to say this is a definitive list but babies leave your brain addled and it’s about personal choice (of course) so please do comment, suggest, criticise and share and help this baby continue to grow.

Nursery
Toys / baby gym ;
Bouncy chair x1
Mobile for cot x1
Moses basket & stand x1
Bath (but don’t bother with a top and tail bowl – really, who uses them?) x1
Changing mat x1
Cot (or cot bed if you’re prone to planning ahead) x1
Monitor x1
Thermometer (for room temperature) x1
Dummies x2
Travel
Buggy x1 (but you may end up trying a few in your time)
Pram blankets and sheets x2
Sling/carrier x1
Sun shades for car windows x2
Car seat (you won’t get out the hospital without it!) x1
Feeding/Changing Note, this allows for bottle or breastfeeding (you can plan this one as much as you like but better be prepared for either/both I say)
Nappy bags ;
Nursing bras x2+
Breast pads (Lansinoh disposable pads are the best – other brands are available to course but in my experience none are as leak-proof) Boxes of the b*ggers if you end up breastfeeding
Breast pump (electric) x1
Bottles x6 to 8
Teats (slow and med) x6 to 8
Bottle brush x1
Steriliser (electric better than microwave) x1
Changing bag x1
Small insulated bottle bag x1
Bottle/food warmer x1
Bedding – cot ;
Fitted bottom sheets x3
Flat top sheets x3
Blankets x3
Bedding – moses basket
Fitted bottom sheets x3
Pram blankets x3
Linen – other
Muslins (preferably not white – they’ll end up grey) Lots!
Bath towels x2
Flannels/mitts x2
Clothes
0-3 months (or newborn but 0-3 allows for whoppers)
Vests (bodysuits/short sleeves) x6 to 8
Sleeping bag (1 or 2.5 tog depending on time of year – NB only suitable for babies when over a certain weight) x2
Sleepsuits x6
Day outfits (eg b-gros, dungarees, t-shirts) Oh, never too many and these will come in gift form so don’t go wild before the baby arrives
Cardigans x2 to 3 (you may not need to buy if granny has been knitting …)
Socks x2 to 3 pairs
Mittens x2 pairs (ditto above re granny)
Shawl x2
Hats x2
Jacket (warmer) x1
Bibs x10
Toiletries etc
Baby bubble bath – don’t need to start with but add to stock ;
Baby nail clippers and scissors ;
Sudocrem (for bums and all else) ;
Metanium cream (for bad nappy rash) ;
Cotton wool balls ;
Wet wipes (we used ‘sensitive’ wipes – wipes not always recommended for newborns) ;
Baby lotion ;
Talc ;
Hairbrush ;
Cotton buds ;
Nipple cream – Lansinoh is the must-have! Other brands available but don’t bother looking in Ann Summers … ;
Infacol (worth having in case of colic) ;
Digital thermometer for taking baby’s temp ;
Calpol (NB can’t use until 3 months + but have it ready) ;
Hospital bag
FOR YOU ;
Maternity notes! ;
Water spray/mist ;
Socks and/or slippers and/or flip flops 1 pair
Dressing gown ;
Nursing bras x2
Breast pads Quite a few!
Shower gel, deodorant, make-up, nipple cream etc ;
Arnica tablets (start taking as soon as you’ve had the baby – eases bruising to your bits!!) ;
Glucose sweets, eg Lucozade sweets ;
Phone charger ;
Something to read ;
Money ;
Snacks – eg cereal bars, bananas ;
Big bottle of water and small cartons of orange juice ;
Maternity pads (these will take up half your bag!) Large packet
Old cotton pants – don’t bother with the disposable paper pants as they’re undignified and unpleasant! x5
Button through nightdress x2
Change of clothes to go home in ;
FOR BABY ;
Newborn nappies Small pack
Teddy (don’t do what I did for my first child and take the teddy out of the bag to make way for more of my own stuff. Selfless, eh?) ;
Sudocrem ;
Wet wipes 1 pack
Sleepsuits x4
Cardigans x2
Hats x2
Scratch mitts 2 pairs
Shawl/blanket x1
Going home outfit (what you’d like your baby to first meet the outside world in although the paparazzi are unlikely to be waiting outside) x1
Warm outer clothes depending on time of year ;
Muslins x6

;

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Seeing blue

20 Feb

A couple of days ago I nearly killed myself doing a pregnancy pilates DVD. Admittedly I should have started doing it sooner than 34 weeks into my pregnancy. The teacher on the DVD had, despite being 36 weeks up the duff, retained an ability to move with the speed of one of the X-Men. I on the other hand had to keep hitting pause in order to get into the next position before she’d finished it. What’s more, Lil’ Miss California Flexibility (surely the bump was fake?) stated that she was naming her baby Sienna Chilli. Sienna – fine, but Chilli? That was enough pilates for me. Far too North London.

To cut a long tendon short (ouch), this brief experience of home exercise settled in my mind that swimming is the activity for me. (Principally because I’ve been doing it regularly for a while and therefore am not trying to master it at one of the least fit and inflexible times of my life, nor is there anyone to keep pace with and I can still perform it with relative speed – although now more like a whale than a dolphin.)

Arriving at the swimming pool midweek revealed a peaceful haven in comparison to the usual weekend rabble of toddlers screaming and dads trying to outdo each other on the diving boards. Midweek swimming promised proper lanes, serious swimmers and, without kids, far less pee in the pool (although there were lots of elderly folk so this latter assumption may have been ill-founded). And whilst we’re touching on the scatological (rubber gloves on of course) it never fails to amuse me that the sign for the toddler pool is always slightly obscured and thus reads ‘Teaching Poo’. How apt. Keep your mouth shut in that pool. It was lucky that my daughter only got a piece of foam stuck up her nose in there.

Unfortunately, the serious swimmers (ie those that like to swim up and down and don’t do underwater handstands) hadn’t totally eliminated the idiots. I was always sceptical of my brother’s tales of ‘swim rage’, thinking it was more to do with his lack of patience than the other swimmers. However I’ve grown to appreciate his intolerance. Offenders generally fall into one of the following categories:

  • Those who have chosen to swim in a lane that is above their ability (the safest option I’ve found is always to opt for the ‘medium’ lane).
  • Those who can swim fast but splash like they’ve got trays strapped to their arms (clearly a failure of technique – speed over style is not going to earn you any friends in the pool, especially with people like me who swim in their contact lenses but no goggles and risk blindness at the merest hint of a ripple).

A particular offender in both categories was a one-armed man who swam with a float. Not only did he splash but he was also slow. Actually, it turned out that he had two arms so I’m not exactly sure what it was I saw sticking out of the water. Nothing would surprise me in a public pool, even in oh-so-civilised St Albans.

To pick up again on bodily functions (funny that – they always seem to be inextricably linked to public swimming baths), my mood was somewhat lightened by the ‘farting drain’. Located at the deep end of the pool (which I never get to at the weekend as it’s cordoned off for the diving board idiots and their belly flops and wedgies), the drain created noises to rival that of the glorious Whoopee Cushion. The trick was to wait until someone in the lane next to you drew up alongside the said drain, wait for the drain to let rip and then shoot them a look of combined horror and surprise. Ah, the joke that never gets old. Well it got them out of my water space pretty quickly and I even forgave them a splash.

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