Baby Essentials — Most Used Items + Tips
Hellooo mumma's! I'm so excited to share this blog post with you as it's my absolute, must-have, every day use items that I've gotten more than 10x their value out of! And as a somewhat seasoned Mum now myself, I can wholeheartedly recommend what we have used the most over the past 10 months 🏼
For total transparency, some of these links are affiliated, some are not, some I am paid commission for when you use my code (like EcoNaps) and some the company has kindly just offered my audience a discount (like Chekoh). Either whichway, I wholeheartedly believe in the value of every item listed here and want to support as many people as I can on their journey and love to share my personal experiences 🥰
For newborns and first coming into motherhood, I have a separate blog post for all tips and must-haves postpartum, this one is for your baby as they grow! Tips For First Time Mums — Newborn Edition (eee Azura was so teensy in that photo! and seriously, buy the silverettes)
Here goes, in zero order.
Lovevery Play Kits — Montessori based sustainable toys developed by researchers, sent out bi-monthly specifically for your babies level of development. These are a game changer, and are so spot on for the perfect time that your baby is interested in each "toy". The only "toys" you need are these. Some things may seem basic or uninteresting, but right now Azura is 10 months and obsessed with the containers from the 9-10 month play kit. I never would have thought. You'll also save so much money and space in your home if you only have these. Consider asking a grandparent if they'd like to pay the subscription for your little one so they're gifting useful toys ☺️
Books — The Montessori Baby + The Lost Art of Natural Parenting. I've only just started Montessori Baby as it was always out of stock at Kmart, but sheesh I wish I started it from Azura's very first day of life! It's the perfect guide I needed. Thankfully a friend told me I already implement lots of things in this book naturally, but there's still incredible things to learn. The Lost Art book is one I'd have every loving mumma read, as it explains the science and psychology behind responsive parenting, breastfeeding, infant sleep and so much more. It helped me see that everything I'm doing, as 'different' as it may be to the most part of society these days, is the right thing for my baby. And that she will grow up to feel secure, confident to be her authentic self, expressive and loved. When I started to feel I had to shut off and consider sleep training, this brought me back to my heart and reassured my mother intuition.
A toy to bond with — Something to give them comfort, a "landmark" when they stir from their sleep (explained in The Montessori Baby), familiarity in an unknown environment. Make sure it's a common toy that can be replaced if it's lost or damaged in the coming years, we have a unicorn from Jellycat + a goose from Lupa & Sol. Your little one mightn't bond with it straight away but slew ep with it down your shirt for a few nights and take it everywhere you go ☺️
Apple Watch — This suddenly became so invaluable once I became a Mum, in ways I didn't realise until the convenience was already on my wrist. If you want to sneak out of bed in the morning before bub, your watch will just vibrate quietly on your wrist with no sound when you alarm goes off. Gamechanger. I use the timer all the time when cooking, and you have instant (quiet) access to calls and messages that come through. There's been so many times someone has been at the door but the intercom is on silent, or Sam has messaged me asking what I want for dinner, or I'm waiting on an important call but bub is asleep, it is just so useful.
Chekoh carrier — The wrap for a newborn and the clip carrier for when they're bigger! Seriously, you can't not have a Chekoh carrier. Mine goes everywhere with me - in the bottom of the pram for each walk just in case she gets over it and you're stuck 2km from home, every visit to friends and family in case she needs a nap on the go, to woolies, Sunday markets, and any time we need to breastfeed in public! (This gal gets distracted real easy and pulls off every 5 seconds to look around, baring my nipple to the world each time, so the carrier works best for us 😂). I made a reel on my favourite things about the clip here, and my Chekoh code is CAITLINP10
MooGoo baby kit — An all in one safe and gentle pack for your little one. The cow toy is so perfect for newborns too because of the contrasts! Bonus 😌
All-in-one sleep machine — I did a bit of research for this one because there's a lot out there but I specifically wanted white noise, red light, and diffuser. Glow Dreaming provided this and it's the perfect sleep association for Azura, and works perfectly when we're in a new sleep environment such as staying with family or going on holiday as it provides the same sound, same familiar light/physical environment, and same scent which is a very strong association for people/babies. It definitely would give her comfort when we're away from home, and it drowns out outside noise perfectly.
Flip out lounge w furry cover — So, maybe I bought this for aesthetic purposes, but it actually became one of our most used items as soon as Azura started to sit up! You just grab a cheap lounge from Kmart or Big W, and buy the gorgeous cover from Hello Posto. We have the fluffy cream cover which I wash about once a fortnight and every single mark comes out every time, and it's still as fresh as new!
Soft play mat — No, not just a linen mat. Hear me out. My gal is 11 months and still isn't crawling. She hates the hard floor in our lounge room even with the linen mat (from The Muse Edition) and won't even roll once on it! The king bed however, she's a little friggin' gymnast, and the lounge too. She wants to move. We're upgrading to a memory foam mat to encourage her to crawl/move, and other parents have said theirs definitely helped their little one with confidence in moving! Maybe skip the aesthetic baby play mat and just grab a memory foam one/mellow mat!
Bunnie Caddie — Yep, totally necessary. Something I though was just for the aesthetic mummy blogger insta pics, but if there is one area of my entire apartment that is actually well put together and organised, it's my nappies, wipes, change mats, nail clippers, moogoo products and baby essential oils. Thanks to my bunnie caddie.
Milk to Meals Book — This guy could have been #1 on the list, it's where nearly all of my nutritional information has come from! Very very worth the price, I recommend reading from when bub is about 4 months, there is such essential reading in there. Also follow their instagram boobtofood and read their blog, there's stacks of recipes 💖
Plates + glass containers — These are the only plates that fit well in my tripp trapp tray and are amazing quality. The glass containers are amazing for putting snacks in, but mainly for freezing food into portions with! I also use my arlo trays (below) to batch freeze, then pop one portion into one of these containers in the morning to be defrosted on the bench by lunch. My code is "CAITLIN20"
Feeding bundle + food trays — Arlo Collections is a small, mumma owned business who has the most beautiful high quality products. We use these every day, the straw cups are a must have! (we have 3 ☺️). The trays are also a necessity, you can bake directly in them (think muffins, veggie bites) and put them in the freezer too! My code is "AZURA10"
EcoNaps | Modern cloth nappies — Disposable nappies are low-key expensive. This is my biggest argument for choosing MCN! And they're a lot easier than you think. I don't do it 'properly', you can check out Clean Cloth Nappies if you want to really wash them 'correctly', I'll simply rinse the poo off if there is one or flush it down the toilet if it's solid, soak all used pads in nappisan (not the shells as they're usually dry/clean), then chuck them all in the wash when I've used up my collection of 10-15 and air dry. Easy! My code is "CAITLINPOTTS15" and I also highly recommend their swim nappies, travel change mat (comes everywhere with us) and dry bags!
Rocking chair — Something I wish I had from the moment I gave birth! I got the Il Tutto Paige recliner glider and it was awesome to b