Hawk sleeping in his Snuggle Me organic infant nest – he’ll be 8 weeks this week!!
We’re hanging in there, but thanks to a reader who recommended the Wonder Weeks app, I know that at about 8 weeks Hawk is going through a developmental leap, which is why he is way more cranky and clingy than usual. Oh, and not sleeping much either. Today he’s giving me a little break though, so I’m able to write some and get this “essentials” post down.
Take my advice lightly, please, I don’t know anything; I’m just trying things to see what sticks at this point! And obviously, what works for me and Hawk may not work for anyone else, but these are some of the things I’ve found very helpful these last few months.
We have a lot of things. More than I wanted, originally, but this is what happens, I think, when getting acquainted with a newborn. I did wait to get most of this stuff until after he was born and I knew more about what I wanted/needed, which I definitely recommend. I did also end up returning some things I had on the registry because after he was born, we didn’t need/want them anymore.
First, my one and only pregnancy essential: this Sleep pillow was absolutely crucial for me. I used it mostly to help keep me on my left side for sleeping, which it did (I’m a back sleeper), but it was also great for support in the difficult later months. I couldn’t have managed without it and took it with me when we went on trips. Leo was happy to see it go though, after Hawk was born, he said it was like a third person in the bed 😉
I wouldn’t necessarily call these “essentials” because you could absolutely manage without them, but they’ve all definitely made my life easier during this newborn stage. ANY LITTLE THING HELPS at this point, so I say try all of the things if you can….
Blooming Bath Lotus & Weleda bar soap for bath time – and then Earth Mama baby oil for a little massage 😉 We use the bath lotus in the bathroom sink and it’s so amazing. It keeps him cradled and comfy, and it washes well. Highly recommend.
4 moms mamaRoo baby swing – we bought this secondhand, and I was a little reluctant, thinking we didn’t need it, but wow, it has been a lifesaver. We use this in the kitchen area which is where I work a lot, and where we eat, and it provides much-needed relief for a few minutes while we cook, eat, or work. He’s not usually happy in it for more than 15 minutes lately, although early on, he would sleep longer in it. Phases…LOL.
Snoo bassinet – We also bought this secondhand for less than full price, but honestly, I think I’d recommend it even at full price. (you can also rent it – or, we’ll be selling ours once Hawk grows out of it if anyone’s interested!). He goes through phases where he sleeps more or less, but he has slept as long as 6 hours at a time in the Snoo, which is SO helpful. We use it only at night right by our bed and I think the white noise helps soothe me to sleep as well as Hawk. I also feel like he’s safe and secure in the swaddle, which is connected to the bassinet so there’s no way he can move or turn over (not that he can at this age anyway), which gives me peace of mind.
Solly baby wrap (this is what’s allowing me to type with two hands right now!) – I also have the Wild Bird linen ring sling but for now I prefer the Solly baby wrap because it is easier to use and snuggles Hawk better and closer to my body than the linen one would; I think the ring sling will be better once he’s older and can hold his head up. I do wish it was a little easier to put on and take off without completely un-doing it, but it is what it is. It’s also not always completely hands-free because Hawk sleeps with his head back and often I have to keep holding it, but it’s definitely better than carrying him without the wrap.
Storq tanks and bra – I am pretty much always wearing one of these (size 3) and have since the end of my pregnancy.
L’oved baby organic cotton wrap onesies and tops – clothing has been a real challenge for us since Hawk is so small (less than 7 pounds). A lot of the newborn or 0-3 month items are a little big on him, but they’re manageable. I love the L’oved baby items because they’re wrap style instead of pullover (I dislike pulling things over his tiny head!), and made of substantial organic cotton. I also really love the Monica & Andy line at Nordstrom – it’s a bit more expensive though.
Hevea natural rubber pacifiers – Hawk isn’t a huge fan of pacifiers, although sometimes he takes to them more than others. He has a couple of these in various places around the house and I like them because they’re 100% rubber, no plastic.
Baby bits Wipe solution and organic cotton wipes – we don’t use cloth diapers yet, but we do use cloth wipes for most diaper changes. For especially dirty diapers we use Water wipes, but most of the time I just spray the wipe solution on a cotton wipe and wipe! You can soak the wipes and store them in a wipe warmer, but I don’t see the need for that to be honest.
Cloth diapers for burping, etc. – these are indispensable as burp cloths, or for whatever else you can imagine.
Snuggle Me organic “infant nest” – this is really useful, although it’s a nice-to-have instead of a must-have. I use it on either of our sofas for him to sleep next to me or my husband while he’s watching football or I’m reading. It cradles the baby’s body so perfectly; Hawk can sleep in it for hours during the day. I thought about a dock-a-tot but prefered to try this one instead and I’ve been really pleased with it.
For laundry, which I do at least every two days, and sometimes every day, I use Dr. Bronner’s baby hemp soap or The Laundress baby detergent, although I find the scent on this one sort of overpowering.
Finally, we have an Uppababy Cruz stroller, which I love, but I balked at getting the bassinet for him until a couple weeks ago, and now I wish I’d gotten it earlier. I had the infant insert for the regular stroller seat, but didn’t love it because Hawk couldn’t stretch out his legs, and he had to be buckled in. Now I just lay him out in the bassinet and go for a walk around the neighborhood and then if he falls asleep I can detach it from the stroller (or not!) and bring it into the kitchen so he can stay asleep, or upstairs to my office.
You’ll notice that a boppy pillow isn’t on my list, which isn’t to say I don’t appreciate having it (whether you want one or not you WILL get one from family or friends at some point LOL), but I don’t always find it terribly useful. Most of the time I feed him on the couch and prop him up with pillows, or in bed, and do the same. I also feed him standing up, walking around, at the kitchen table, rocking chair, etc., and the boppy pillow doesn’t do much for me in those situations. I guess I wish the boppy was more malleable and not so firm, and easier to carry around.
I’m sure I’ve left some things off, so ask any questions if you have them. And please, leave your own newborn essentials in the comments, any suggestions help!!