I'm a small-town Minnesota dietitian and triathlete.
I help endurance athletes reach their performance and body composition goals through a flexible eating style.
When I was pregnant I was determined to not waste my money on unnecessary baby things that I didn’t actually need. I hate clutter in my house and I knew that babies came with a lot of stuff. While I wasn’t exactly successful at this goal – as there’s a lot of baby stuff that I never ended up using. I did, however, discover a selection of items that are my absolute favorite.
Here are my top four (ok, there’s actually five!) must-have items for new moms!
1) Grovia Magic Stick Diaper Balm – AKA in our household as the butt stick. Instead of smearing traditional diaper cream on your baby’s bottom with your hands, this ingenious no-mess stick applicator is so quick and easy to use. Anytime our son had minor rashes or red skin we would use the butt stick and by his next diaper change, his skin was clear again. We have multiple butt sticks for diaper bags, at home and daycare. They last a LONG time… Like months! So well worth the $14 price tag. It’s also cloth diaper safe too.
Our daycare provider loves this too as she doesn’t have to deal with diaper cream stuck under her fingernails!
2) Lactation Cookies – These cookies are fantastic to eat during those middle of the night breastfeeding (or pumping) sessions when all you want is something quick and satisfying to eat so that you can get back to bed. Lactation cookies are essentially a high-calorie chocolate chip oatmeal cookie, with a scary name to keep your husband from eating them due to his fear they will cause him to start lactating.
One or two cookies during nighttime feedings and pumping got me thru the night until breakfast. Those first few weeks of breastfeeding and/or pumping can put your appetite in hyperdrive.
You can buy lactation cookies, however, they are crazy expensive. It’s well worth making your own before baby arrives, or ask a friend or family member that enjoys baking to help a woman out! I made a huge batch of lactation cookies weeks before my due date and stored them in the freezer. After my son was born I would pull a bag of cookies from the freezer, thaw on the counter and enjoy as needed!
These also make an excellent baby shower gift for a new mom! You can find my lactation cookie recipe HERE.
3) Cooper Pearl 5-in-1 Stretchy Car Seat Canopy and Nursing Cover – I was gifted this at my baby shower, and at the time I wasn’t sure if I would use it or not. Once little guy arrived I used it all the time! I love the soft, stretchy fabric. When using as a car seat cover the fabric is light enough to allow air circulation, and still keeps baby out of the direct sunlight when they are sensitive to the bright lights.
4) FriedaBaby: The Mom Washer – After a vaginal birth, things are not pretty down there. The hospital will provide you with a peri-bottle and most women will confirm that it sucks. Now the Mom Washer… is brilliantly engineered and designed. It’s super easy to use, there’s no spraying water at an awkward angle to get things cleaned up. The spray is very gentle on such a sensitive area, and does a great job of getting you clean and get you healed up faster. You may think $15 for a squirt-bottle, but it’s totally worth it.
Bonus #5 — If you have this available to you in your area… I HIGHLY recommend giving it a try.
Grocery Online Ordering – More and more grocery stores are offering delivery/pick-up services. It took me awhile to jump on this trend, but as a new mom was a lifesaver. My husband has a lot of great qualities, but grocery shopping is not one of them. It took forever for me to write out a detailed enough grocery list so that he bought the correct item. Sneaking away to the grocery store myself with a newborn was difficult. The car seat fills up three-fourths of your shopping cart! Instead of meal planning, writing out a grocery list, driving to the grocery store and shopping the online grocery ordering services allow you to do everything in the comfort of your own home. It takes a little bit of planning ahead as you’ll have to schedule when you’d like it delivered or ready for pick-up in their drive-up zone. It’s a huge time saver for a busy mom!