Parents: What Are Necessary Items for Our First Baby?

Hi all,

I'm going to have my first kid soon and I'd like to work out what do I actually need. I've read first time parents can go overboard so I don't want to be one of those parents. But at the same time, I want to make it nice for my kid and my partner.

What are items that are fine getting second hand vs new?
What sort of gifts did family and friends buy?
Did you make a baby wishlist?

What I already have

  • Cot/Crib with mattress - Bought new on clearance
  • Carseat (newborn to 8 years) - Bought new on extra discount
  • Shower chair - Given to us barely used
  • 1 x Nappy bag - Bought new on discount
  • Co sleeper/Portable crib - Given to us
  • Bouncer - Given to us
  • A few books - Got from vinnies
  • First aid kit
  • Wipes
  • digital thermometer

What I need

  • Pram
  • Change table and mat
  • Sheets/blanket for mattress
  • Clothes for the baby
  • Maternity clothes for my partner
  • newborn nappies
  • bibs

What I think I need

  • First aid training
  • Baby monitor
  • Feeding Bottles
  • Rocking Chair
  • nappy bin
  • Steriliser, bottle warmer, breast pump
  • Toys

Any info from parents would be great. I like to be organised with what I need, but I also don't want to buy things that are just a waste of time, money and space or if its a common gift.

Edit: Thank you everyone for your kind help and suggestions! My partner is stunned that people took the time out of their day to write to us. I'm adding things i need into my spreadsheet and going for a hunt on marketplace!! Thank you!

Comments

    • From memory. A pot with water that goes about half way up the bottle

    • Take it out the night before to defrost in the fridge. Then transfer to bottle and heat up like normal refrigerated milk (I use a bottle warmer) when ready to use.

    • Put it in a bowl, add boiling water to said bowl. Works pretty well.

      Our baby refused to drink milk after it had been frozen. Apparently it changes the proteins, and it is pretty common for babies to not drink it after it had been frozen. If that happens to you, the way to get around it is to scald it before freezing it ( https://spectra-baby.com.au/scalding-breastmilk-high-lipase/ )

  • +2

    Dont over think. We bought a lot of things and ended up not using it.

    Just have the basic for the first 2 month and buy when needed.

  • Just going from your list

    • We never used a bouncer but I'm sure it'll be handy
    • Change table and mat I consider unnecessary. Just lay a towel or a disposable mat and change them on the bed. Kmart has bulk packs of towels for cheap in baby section.
    • Baby monitor is a lifesaver. We had one given to us by family
    • We bought a fancy new rocking chair but seldom used it
    • Steriliser / Bottle warmer / pump - yes if you are going to store milk
    • Get some nappy rash cream.

    I would add a teether to your list although this can be bought later. Also you want some swaddle blankets - do not use blankets due to SIDS except for short naps where you can monitor/watch them. We did use a tucked in top blanket in say month 3-5 but once kiddo started rolling, we switched to sleeping bags.

    If you don't have family nearby then definitely get your freezer stocked up with some quick frozen meals you can eat. You won't get much time for sleep and eating in the first 2 months, but then it gets a little easier.

    Also buy lots and lots of nappies and wipes and keep them stored. You'll be surprised just how quick you go through them (~6-8 changes per day). I did most of my shopping from Amazon - good prices and delivered straight to your door. Was very good.

    I bought my wife a boppy pillow but again didn't use it too much.

  • +1

    Feeding cushion, heaps of baby cloths, baby mobile, waterproof mattress topper, scented plastic bags

    • +1000 for a decent feeding cushion.

  • Anything that gives you peace of mind / helps you sleep better. For the missus and I, this was:
    - baby monitor - cheap aldi one with a motion/noise camera worked fine
    - "owlet" baby heartrate / oxygen monitor sock
    - window self adhesive blockout covers
    - self adhesive door seals - bunnings
    The last 2 combined really help to create a dark room, where the baby isnt woken by light seeping in

      • "owlet" baby heartrate / oxygen monitor sock

      I've heard these cause more stress than they are worth - but I could be wrong. Did you find it handy?

      • Very much so - just having the peace of mind that bub hasnt stopped breathing or something helped with our own sleep and restfullness. Definitely recommend to everyone despite the price

        • I remember that being a big worry for my partner. I also had a few moments where I was staring at bub waiting for his chest to rise. These fears go away once they get bigger.

      • Incorrect. That is coming from people who don't have the device.

        Been alerted twice for good reasons in 18 days.

    • baby monitor
    • whitenoise/red light machine
    • swaddles, you'll use them all the way up to 1.5 years at least. Wrap them in wraps for the first two or three months.
  • Don't stress too much. When they first come out they need nappies and wipes, onesies, blankets, a bassinet, a pram and a car seat. The rest you can just get as you need it.

    If you're going to express milk, just get a Spectra pump. They are expensive but way, way better than anything else on the market and you'll just go through two or three others before biting the bullet and getting a Spectra anyway.

    • 100% agree with this we used a medela for our first then got a spectra when we had the second and third. It was a lot faster and efficient.

  • Get a Vivo X70 pro plus! Fire endless shots to preserve the memory regardless of light.

  • -2

    I'm surprised no one said a baby sitter .
    Chuck all your items in front of this person for maximum efficiency .

  • +1

    I love our Babyzen Yoyo. Although it’s a travel pram, we use it for everyday. We bought a Redsbaby Jive2 and haven’t used it since we bought the yoyo for a trip. It’s just so much easier to carry around (full size prams are bulky and heavy). Watch out for sales.
    Also a Snoo if it’s within your budget. Absolute lifesaver for us this time round, as my first was a terrible sleeper. It has a pretty high resell value.
    Body suits and wondersuits, your baby will pretty much live in these. Plus hand-me-downs as others said.
    I mentioned above about Kogan baby monitor, awesome value for $50.
    Everything else has been pretty much mentioned already so I won’t repeat too much.

    • My partner really wants a snoo. Is it one of those things you only decide to get if your baby isnt a great sleeper?

      • I wasn’t going to take the chance this time round, plus it’s probably a good idea to get them used to it early if you were to get one. My first only napped in our arms and didn’t sleep through until 18 months. I can’t do that this time round with my toddler as well. Some babies are definitely better sleepers than others, and Snoo may not work for everyone, but it’s saving my sanity this time and my second has been sleeping through in it since 6weeks old.

        • My little one is 10 weeks old and she only really napps in arms and the most she's stretched out at night is maybe 2-3 hours if lucky (once or twice).
          With your second one, when you say sleeping through? How long exactly are we talking? && did you do anything different?

          • +1

            @DKZ370: His longest stretch of the night can vary between 6-12hrs. I try not to let this one nap in our arms after going through it with my first. With the help of the Snoo it’s easier to put him down cos it can rock him back to sleep even he wakes up after putting him down. This gives me more time to spend with my toddler. I was also co-sleeping with my first as otherwise he wouldn’t sleep (initially waking every 2-3hrs, later waking every hour!), so it’s really nice to have my own space and not being disturbed as much this time round.

      • I also want to add that capsules (+matching adapters for pram/stroller) are very handy for the first 6 months. You don’t want to wake a sleeping baby! Ask if any friends have one you could have/borrow if you don’t want to buy new.

      • We didn’t get one but friends have and rave about it. Not sure if you can rent one to see if it works for you since they are pretty pricey.

        • +1

          We bought one second hand (haven't had a chance to use it yet as baby is pending) but it cost $1400 as barely used and we figure we can flip it once we are done and probably break even. When trying to get one here in Perth one or two come up for sale a week and get picked up very quickly!

          We thought this would be the cheaper option long term than even renting, and if it isn't for us we just sell it and are no worse off. Many of the people renting them out are people who bought them and looking to recoup some funds by renting at $40 to 50 pw

      • We had a Snoo, didn't work for us but that's just my bub being a rubbish sleeper.
        If you can, purchase in the Black Friday sales coming up next month.
        I got mine last year in those sales and just recently sold it on marketplace. I made an almost $200 profit.

        • What sort of discount did you get out of interest?

  • Didnt read through all answer, but just make sure you dont buy too much clothes or newborn nappy sizes etc as they grow so rapidly and wont wear it for long. I found plenty of great things at kids op shops.

  • +1

    I was unable to breast feed, but didn't buy bottles until my night out from the hospital. Kinda felt like I was jinxing myself if I had that stuff ready. If you have trouble feeding just remember 'FED IS BEST' and don't beat yourselves up if breast feeding doesn't work.

    My favourite items for this were a microwave steriliser (also had a smaller travel one that was great) and a tupperware quickshake for mixing the formula. This was good as sometimes you only need a small amount more for a hungry baby which is much less than the smallest amount to make up.

    Change table - we covered an old table with wadding and then plastic and used that. Had a chest of drawers underneath for clothes, and a smaller shelf unit on the top for nappies etc. Put a change pad on it and could fit the bath on it, too. My sister was given one of those more flash ones with the bath under the change table, but she said it was quite painful as she had to hold a wet baby while closing the lid and putting a towel down on it after the bath.

    Pram - I went shopping with my sister as she had three kids so knew lots more than me and wasn't trying to upsell me. I ended up with an umbrella stroller that was fantastic for both kids. I returned this favour with a friend when she was pregnant and she was very happy when I pointed out the foot lock on her favourite - her husband's feet were very big and it would have been almost impossible for him to use it. If you can shop with an 'experienced parent' rather than a salesperson it makes a big difference. Also practice 'opening' it up before having the baby.

    Portacot - practice putting this up A LOT before you have the baby. They can be diabolical. Also make sure baby sitters like grandparents are fully cognisant with it. Ours didn't want to admit they were having trouble getting it to stay up!

    My OB told me not to particularly take advice - just filter it and pick when I thought would work. He also said if he gave advice it would be 'don't take heroin and don't bungy-jump'. My GP always said that parental intuition was his favourite diagnostic tool, but also a couple of days ahead of tests. He made sure we knew that if we were concerned, that he would be.

    Found this on-line yesterday. Might help. https://www.mamamia.com.au/worst-unsolicited-parenting-advic...

  • +1

    Definitely consider getting Blackout blinds if your bub seems too alert and easily distracted by light/movements.
    The day of discharge, the mid-wives kept saying your bub is very alert and we were filled with pride. Only later did we realise that they were trying to warn us that extremely small things would end up distracting him :D

    In my opinion, if you want them to sleep well, ensure you have the following -

    Visual Sensory - Blackout blinds or if you want to DIY - Aluminum foil. In my case, I also had to foil up the small light emerging from the motion sensor security device. Bub would just sit staring at that.
    Auditory Sensory - White noise machine or spare phone running a White Noise app. Vacuum cleaner noise works fine for our bub. He hates the other "chimes" and just refuses to sleep on those. See which one works best for yours. This will also ensure your bub doesn't get startled as often due to BAU noise at home.

    Hope that helps.

  • I'm a father of 5 months, bought tons of stuff for my first baby girl. Some are useful some are completely waste of money, I think each to their own. The item that I consider the most useful is the foldable change table, if you always change nappy on the bed your back will break soon.

    I recommend this one:
    https://valcobaby.com.au/product/pax-plus-lightweight-foldab...

    And don't forget to get those lotions and creams to take acre of your baby's skin

  • +4

    Father of two young kids here. There was a member who has 7. Whatever he says should supersede what anyone has advised here lol.

    Get a baby carrier. Maybe you don’t need to take the pram everywhere. This one is easy to get on by yourself.
    https://ergobaby.com/baby-carrier/four-position-360

    Clothes: newborn will be in jumpsuits 90% so make sure it’s comfortable and breathable. Have 1-2 nice outfit for occasions like birthdays or weddings (you prob won’t need to buy as someone will gift you a nice cute branded outfit)

    Bottles: if baby has trouble keeping down milk it could be that they’re taking in too much air. This brand is really good with that.
    https://www.drbrowns.com.au/

    Can I add that when baby has learned to roll over and you’re using a nappy change table, to keep at least one hand on the baby at all times. If you need to reach over to get something, pick baby up and go get whatever is needed. Change tables are high so you don’t bend down so any fall can result in serious injury to the baby.

    PS- when you leave the hospital don’t forget to sneak the hospital blanket home as a souvenir. You’ll know what I mean when you see the blanket out in the wild and give a knowing nod and smile to the other first time parents.

  • Good luck! I would suggest getting everything you need/want second hand if possible and before the baby arrives. There are so many good deals (even free items) on Marketplace and Gumtree and if you take good care of the items you can sell them for the same price or more. We ended up buying two prams (Redsbaby Jive 2 and Valco Baby Snap 4) then used both for a while before deciding to sell one for more than we bought it for.

    The only problem with waiting until the baby arrives to get things is that you will tend to buy new items which will cost you more in the end. You can buy one nice baby outfit at the shops for $10 - 40, or buy a whole bag of decent second hand baby clothes for less than $50 and half of them are brand new because the baby outgrew the clothes within a month.

  • Dont forget to invest in a good camera phone for plenty of pictures - also with cloud autosave for the photos. You will be amaze how fast they grow and how quickly the storage in the phone gets depleted.

  • My boy turned 6 months yesterday and agree with most of the feedback provided. Probably also worth getting a play mat and a baby monitor is a must have too. We never bothered with a change table (just use the bed) but did get a change mat. Noticed that the list didnt include a bath tub either. For bath and creams, we used QV products exclusively. Also helps to have some massage oil if you get time to massage the baby. All the best!

    • I have a charlie chair, which I believe is like a bath but more like a chair, and your baby can sit in it. But baths also seem cheap, so might pick one up. Any reason for using QV only?

      • You wont be bathing the baby before 6 months in the charlie chair. You will need a bath tub because they require neck support for at least 4-6 months. We just bought the IKEA one which is cheap and practical. QV products are rated the best as far my wife researched. They are expensive compared to other products but they last a fair while.

        https://www.ikea.com/au/en/p/laettsam-baby-bath-white-green-...

        • I checked their website and it says that its safe for bathing from newborn up to when they are 17kg. It also says it meets all australia/eu/us safety requirements. Is there something that disputes it? Coz I'd like to look into it before i put my baby in it!

          • @PropertyPig: That looks like a great baby bath. I was pretty happy with the $10 one from Kmart, but the table was a little short and I was leaning over awkwardly, then carrying it over to the sink to empty. Pretty expensive for something that will only get 6 months use but it might just save your back. After a while the laundry sink or bath works just as well.

            • @Brumby92: It was given to us so I'm keen to try it. My sister had it for her baby, but her baby is now in one of those braces for her legs, so can't sit in it. It looks pretty good, and we have a huge double sized shower, so this would be perfect for us.

      • The Charli Chair is fantastic. We used it from 1 month and we're still using it now daily at 10 months.

  • +3

    We have 2 kids (10 & 11 now). In terms of what you need I would highlight buying a bunch of cloth nappies (buy in bulk from Big W / KMart / Target etc). Not to use as nappies (unless you plan to do this) but to use for burping, wiping up messes, etc. You WILL use these. In terms of a pram, we went all fancy and regretted it from the first time we tried to lift it and put it into the boot - took up all the space and was a nightmare. Get something light, portable, easy to open and fold - your baby will not care how "fancy" their pram is.

    You will be getting a LOT of "advice" from everyone, family, friends, colleagues etc etc. Some will work, some won't. My most valuable advice is to do whatever works for you, your partner and your child. You do not need to explain yourself to anyone. Please remember this on those "rough days".

    I would also say that setting up a very strict routine from literally day 1 was a lifesaver for us. We had both kids sleeping through (11pm to 5am) by 6 weeks and I'm convinced it was due to having a routine right from the start. Again, it may not work for you in which case, just ignore the advice :-)

    Good luck - your life will never be the same again (in the best way possible)

  • Excellent points already provided but here are my 2c.

    Breast pump - wait until the baby is born. That's what we did. Not all mum's/ babies babies breast feed so take each day as it comes and see how breast feeding goes. Take the advice of the maternity staff.

    Pram. Can't rate the UPPAbaby Vista high enough. The storage underneath is huge and is useful when shopping. Most other prams storage get full from a nappy bag. It's also a double stroller as well with the right attachments.

    Monitor. Not essential if baby is in your room. Can be handy to see the baby while napping but not essential.

    Clothes. Only need bonds wondersuits for first few months. Don't need anything else except maybe a fancy outfit. Buy one size up when clearance sales hit (ozbargain way).

    Thermometer. Get one that can read from the forehead. Underarm are hard to use for small kids. Most are quite unreliable from the ones I've owned.

    We used a baby feeding app to record feeds. That was handy to track feeds in the early days.

    All the best with it.

  • Have you looked at cloth nappies? The initial cost may seem like a lot, but you will save so much cash over time. We didn't start buying nappies until he was 1 and had to wear them to daycare and even now we buy one pack every 2 months or so.

    Taking care of them isn't that hard and you will get as much poo on you with cloth nappies as you do with disposable ones haha

  • Do not buy a rocking chair

  • Sudo cream
    Lots of nappies
    Fragarent Nappy bags/Bin
    Bibs, go for long ones
    A comfort toy
    Soft Chewing things
    Mattress cover
    Disinfectant
    Baby powder
    A bag or box or file holder with all baby stuff like appointments, letters, cards etc.
    Baby head pillows
    White noise/speaker to play soft
    Earmuffs if going somewhere it's loud
    QV cream massage everyday
    Eczema cream/breast milk is also good
    Baby Panadol
    Baby monitor, don't cheap out this one.
    Don't buy too many clothes, they grow too fast. You want 5-8 sets and wash them everyday.

    Will add more

  • +1

    Even if you use disposable nappies these terry towelling cloth nappies are so useful.
    Pretty much have one on your shoulder to catch milk burps whenever you are holding the baby.
    https://www.bigw.com.au/product/big-softies-terry-towelling-...

    Also my first was born in July so I got a hot water bottle to keep his bed warm when having his night time feed. He would wake as soon as you put him in his bed. Hot water bottle stopped that happening.

  • What I need
    Pram
    I bought a marlaren quest stroller, it wasnt too bad for $250,or you could some some high end ones?
    Change table and mat
    I didnt get those.. Just do it one bed with a towel under is fine..
    Sheets/blanket for mattress
    Clothes for the baby
    Dont buy too many, they will out grown so quickly.. 000 for 4 to 5 sets?? Can always get some new one at target or kmart
    Maternity clothes for my partner
    I didnt buy these, just wear normal clothes or t shirt, do the feeding at home is fine..
    newborn nappies
    Dont buy too many boxes or new born ones… Babies grow so quick.. Just grab a box of nb is fine..

    Bibs
    I didnt get them…

    Baby socks or hat
    Not really a must have item..

    …….
    Suggestions??
    Instead of getting the blanket, invest a grobag
    2.5 t…
    Baby wraps
    Bath support
    Babybjorn rocker
    Dummies?
    Bottles if you are planning to use baby formula

    Must have (sudo Cream is too thick and personally not really like them, I think from they baby pack they give you will have a small tin inside, just try it Out yourself to see..)
    lansinoh-nipple-cream
    This will save your partner and babies getting rashes
    One for your partner
    One for your baby

  • Hey there! Congrats!

    Here's what I've found so far and I'm 18 days into being a dad.

    Baby monitor - can be a cheap one or an expensive one. Up to you. I attached it to the bassinet as that's where my kid is currently sleeping. I've also added a portable battery charger so that I can move the bassinet around the house and always have the camera on if he is in it. I've got a Cubo ai Camera.

    https://www.amazon.com.au/Cubo-Plus-Smart-Monitor-Mount/dp/B...

    Milk formula maker - Not essential but has certainly made it a lot more convenient, especially when I wake up at 4/5 am to feed. Also depends on whether you're breast feeding or formula feeding.
    https://www.babyvillage.com.au/products/beaba-milkeo/

    Bottle hanger/dryer - Essential..
    https://www.catch.com.au/product/mother-k-multipurpose-bottl...

    Breast heating pads for the cold nights - essential if breast feeding
    https://www.chemistwarehouse.com.au/buy/81666/lansinoh-thera...

    Nipple cream - self-explanatory
    https://www.chemistwarehouse.com.au/buy/76510/lansinoh-nippl...

    Digital Hygrometer - 1 in each area is handy for a quick glance

    Breast pump - can hire from the hospital. We got a Tommee Tippee double pump. Double the action at half the time.
    https://www.babybunting.com.au/tommee-tippee-double-electric...

    Nappy bin - Essential! Can't smell a thing once I turn the thing. Buy it on sale.
    https://www.babybunting.com.au/tommee-tippee-sangenic-nappy-...
    https://www.babybunting.com.au/tommee-tippee-sangenic-refill...

    Baby friendly sanitiser - https://www.chemistwarehouse.com.au/buy/74412/microshield-an...

  • Biggest scam for new parents is prams, we went to baby bunting for boxing day and 95% families were all buying the super deluxe ones that cost nearly 1k.

    I encourage to look at good euro brands on ebay and such 2nd hand, pegpregno as a example as much more roomy.

    For us the main things we needed:
    Mandela breast pump ($200)
    Bottles
    Nipple shield
    Sanitiser steamer
    Clothes
    Nappy
    Baby wipes
    Blankets
    Wraps
    Infant car seat (these are $30 on fb marketplace as capsules are only great for 6 odd months)
    Ikea nappy bin and such
    Cot for room
    Bassinet for sleeping in other rooms (free from friend).
    Change table
    Goat milk for oil on scalp
    Nappy rash cream
    Massage oil
    Moisturiser
    Cubo Ai webcam

    Best free advice:
    Go to your local library and print tons of free montisorri black and white images :) can glue them to card. $5 DIY = best newborn stimulation

    • Don't go euro brands. You don't know how many hand me down euro brands I got that I looked up and two, recalled. Luckily the ones that bought them had no troubles. Pegpregno included.

      https://healthycanadians.gc.ca/recall-alert-rappel-avis/hc-s...

      • I feel like for newborn and first 6months, baby will have the pram in bassinet mode 90% of the time. Pretty much any pram except a $60 kmart one will work as long as baby is safe.

        • Pretty much any pram except a $60 kmart one will work as long as baby is safe.

          Yep. Although some are more comfortable than others and some as I have pointed out, are safer than others.

    • Our local library has a stack of black and white books to borrow that saves printing.

  • A house

    • +1

      As a propertypig I’ve got one of those :)

  • Willing grandparents.

  • Ubbi bin. More economical than the nappy sausage bins

    Bepathen nappy rash cream. Apply it at every nappy change as a preventative.

  • For the breast pump. Start using it 2 weeks before expected arrival time. Will save you a lot of trouble like baby sleeping really short amount of time because it doesn't get enough milk at the beginning. You can even froze some so anyone can help when the baby wake up.
    Talk to a specialist for more info about breast feeding.

  • +1

    Congratulations!! Exciting times ahead!

    Lots of great advice already but my 2c….

    Pram: depends on your lifestyle, where you're walking etc, lightweight ones don't do so well on bark & cobblestones, but the bigger ones are so heavy! I also found it really annoying having to dismantle the pram into 2 pieces to store in the boot.

    Nappy bag: are you in Melbourne? Vic gives out decent nappy bags to first time parents, has a bunch of stuff like a teether, some baby books, a super cute legionnaire hat…it is a satchel style which some parents find less convenient than the backpacks.

    Change table: my little one is squirming everywhere I struggle to put the feet back on (bonds wondersuits definitely, or onesies with 2 way zippers) I just use the change mat on the floor now, too dangerous to change higher up.

    Breastfeeding: Leave the pump till after delivery to see if you need it, so many people don't end up using it. We started expressing colostrum around 38 weeks, I think it definitely helped us with breastfeeding. Talk to your OB first as apparently it can induce labour, ours said to go ahead and we had a stash of syringes by the time baby came.

    I'd recommend also reading up on sleep settling & routines, we're still rocking to sleep but it's not for everyone.

    Meal prep/freeze, check off all those "to do list" things now ie minor reno, painting, whatever jobs you think you have time to do later….you won't have time….and of course, sleep…sleep lots now, have all the sleep ins you can!!

    • "Meal prep/freeze" - Solid advice. And something we have carried over for when friends are expecting. People might turn up with the latest and greatest toys/mobiles/gadgets, but New Mum & New Dad will never forget the comfort of having a single serve, home-cooked meal which they can stick in the microwave and eat one-handed at 4AM with 0.5 hours sleep whilst trying to get their little bundle of joy to pass out before the sun comes up.

  • Good friends or family you trust to babysit. Date nights or break away night out essential

  • Somewhere for them to sleep. Basinet, then cot.

    Something to transport them in when in the car. A childseat. Some do from birth to 4 years old - I transported both of my kids home in the carseats they still use today (4yo & 2 yo). Don't bother with a capsule.

    Something to transport them in when not in the car. A stroller. You can get the whole baby-carrier chest harness thing, or the back one. But your back will thank you for getting a stroller. Epsecially one which you can easily transport in the boot of the car.

    Something to wash them in. We got away with washing our kids in the kitchen sink, but eventually they get too big or too lively. Those plastic tubs which you can put on the bench do the job, and give you somewhere to put the bub so they don't slip out of your hand like a wet bar of soap.

    Get a good stock of bottles. Even if you're going down the breastfeeding route - if you can express some milk then Daddy can cover a feed or two whilst Mummy catches up on some much needed sleep. Don't worry about getting the fancy pants steam sanitiser - if you're worried, just give the bottles a good boil every month or so. (I think we did that once before sticking to just a good scrubbing in the sink.)

    Aside from that, don't make the mistake of buying tons of clothes - they'll outgrow them before they wear them out. Same with toys - your kid will latch onto one or two favuorites, even if you give them a hundred to choose from. And again they'll grow out of them. Plus you'll get knackered cleaning them up all the time.

  • +2

    Late to the party! Congrats OP. A lot of great suggestions. Kudos to ozb community. One thing I noticed in my experience. The second night of the baby is hardest for the parents. We didn’t know this. Not sure if we had done anything different if at all at had known but try to cherish the time with your baby on day 1 but also try to get some sleep in any intervals you get and on the first night.

    Another quick thing. Take as much as help from anyone who genuinely offers it. Don’t hesitate.

    All the best. Enjoy parenthood.

    PS: be prepared to get a lot of unsolicited “expert” advice from everyone around you specially with kids.

    • Everyone is an expert about kids … Until they become a parent.

  • First up congratulations!

    Our first was born in January so we're not too far off where you are now.

    My experience so far:

    -baby monitor is only necessary if you can't hear the baby from another room. In a small apartment you don't need it, in a 2 storey place or a house it's probably more useful. That being said, if it makes you more comfortable to have there's no harm in it.

    -breast pump, bottle warmer and steriliser are essential if you're going to be expressing/bottle feeding regularly. Hiring a good quality breast pump for a couple of months is a better use of your money than what you can buy for a similar cost.

    -love2dream swaddles are amazing and worth every cent.

    -a playmat is worth getting early on. It'll make tummy time easier on all of you.

    In terms of advice- listen to everyone but be prepared to disregard everything. Everyone's experience is different and everyone will cope differently. For me, nothing could have prepared me for how relentless the first few weeks are. There's a lot of joy for sure, but the sleepless nights, constant feeding, changing, etc and just the complete unfamiliarity of the whole situation is exhausting in a way you've never been exhausted before. It really is ok to struggle in that early stage and don't feel guilty if you don't love every minute of it, cause at times it really does suck. It gets better though, and becomes a lot of fun very quickly.

  • +2

    Oh- one piece of advice you definitely shouldn't disregard!

    Due dates are an educated guess. That kid's coming when it's ready. Get everything ready before you think you'll need it. At a minimum have hospital bags packed, bassinet ready and car seat installed weeks in advance!

    For your hospital bag, pack more than you think you'll need. We expected to stay in for maybe 2-3 days and ended up there for a week. Pack lots of snacks and scout takeaway/delivery options nearby cause if you are in for a few nights hospital food sucks.

    If you have the energy or can hire/ask someone for help give your house a thorough clean beforehand too, it's so much nicer coming home to a clean place and it could be a while before you've got the time/energy to do it again.

  • Gripewater or Infacol … both works great … if baby cries alottttt and you are unable to understand whats going on, means they are overfed with milk, as they don't know when to stop … above mentioned help ease the babies tummy and they get quiet in 5 minutes.

    Many new parents doesn't know this and aren't advised as well.

  • In addition to the "stuff” you want and need, I strongly recommend getting a newborn photo shoot booked in.

    Your family will thank you for it later.

    It's amazing how time flies and it's the only way to treasure those moments forever.

  • Get this instead of normal nail clippers, works way better

    https://www.chemistwarehouse.com.au/buy/92115/rite-aid-baby-...

  • +2

    If you are in Victoria (and I think NSW has something similar as well), you get a free baby bundle (either at the hospital, or from your maternal and child health nurse).

    https://www2.health.vic.gov.au/primary-and-community-health/...

    What's in the baby bundle?

    The contents will include:

    four picture books by Victorian authors
    a nappy bag to hold the products
    a growsuit
    a safe sleeping bag
    muslin wrap
    a teething toy
    a first-aid kit
    a baby sun hat
    a toothbrush
    emergency contacts and information on safe sleeping and wrapping
    parenting information from the Raising Children Network and Kidsafe
    

    The nappy bag we got was fantastic, and the rest of the things were useful, too.

  • Instead of an expensive baby monitor, we use a kasa cam, coupled with an audio only baby monitor.
    That way we can monitor using our phones
    https://www.jbhifi.com.au/products/tp-link-kc105-kasa-spot-1...

  • First time mum of 5 month old, congrats its the best thing ever!

    Honestly all you need is a car seat, somewhere for baby to hang safely while mum has a 30 second shower (bouncer), thermometer, baby panadol, some clothes, a plain wrap, nappies, somewhere for bubs to sleep and a pram. A carrier is optional, but is great if bubs will take it so you can free up your hands especially around the house.

    My favourite buy are reusable baby wipes, you can buy or make it from old towels. The ones in a packet are sh*t at cleaning poos they sort of just move them around where as the towel will pick it up. Plus chemicals etc. I stuff one down my top for cleaning baby vom wherever, it often gets picked up accidentallyby another mum cleaning their too.. so much vom.

    Also get a basket or bucket for mum and fill it with goodies for the marathon feeding sp you can bring it over when needed… hours in front of telly, she won't be able to move haha. Chuck in snacks, remote, phone charger, lip balm, creams, book, blanket, water bottle.

    Please don't feel pressure to buy so much stuff. It's so overpriced and OP shops and marketplace will be your best friend. Set up a notification on marketing place now!!

    You'll only need a monitor if your house is spread out. You don't need to put your baby in a sleep swaddle/straitjacket because you'll need to wean them off it, of course people want you to buy it at $30 a pop. Dummies are personal preference you'll want baby to be able to vocalise when they want!

    You'll get a lot of stuff gifted to you as well.

    Be wary of advice from online sites they secretly want you to buy something by playing on your insecurities where my best advice is follow your gut instinct and that the most powerful power your baby has is to fall asleep on a full tummy, and that babies will start needing stimulation so when in doubt (crying) get out (go for a walk)! Each baby is different of course but don't get upset if they don't stick to a schedule or routine they're only new and don't understand.
    See a GP if you're worried about health. Don't google everything becuase the answer you will find is anything and everything. Instead of googling I should have seen a doctor for bubs, we ended up in hospital finding out bub had a milk allergy!
    "Colic" is a marketing term and is outdated. You don't need infacol and all those baby tonics.

    Babies cry, if baby doesn't cry that's a worry.

    Also please look after mum, there will be a fog early on, it's normal but might be thicker for some but it will clear up. If it doesn't please get help, and check up on your partner. Please offer to take baby for a few moments each day, for a walk while mum gets sleep in, a few quiet moments etc.
    Also meals that take no effort to make, weather it is ready made from shops, frozen or brought over!

  • A babysitter/maid

  • Don't buy too much new!!!
    Don't overspend on clothes your baby will wear three times.
    Buy second hand where possible.
    Bonds jump suits are the best.

    • I agree with this to an extent and definitely do a lot of second hand from OP shops or just hand me downs. But I also figure sometimes it also works out the same cost to get it new and be the person selling it. Eg Bonds Zippie suits are $26 full price up you can routinely get them on sale for $12-15 on sale https://www.bestandless.com.au/Categories/Baby-Newborn-Essen... Many people sell them for $5-15 second hand on marketplace. So if you buy half price then sell them you get to have it new for the same price as the person who buys from you second hand. In also saved by getting the dymples BIGW zippies for $4 when they are little and growing fast and they don’t need the flip up feet then changed to bonds when bub was about 6months to help with crawling then walking. Another example I got a really flash play pen for $160 delivered. Used it for about 6-8months and then sold it for $80, so the person buying effectively paid as much second hand as I did new.

    • +1

      Buy from kmart. I never bought second hand clothes. Personal preference. Kmart has good quality n cheap as. Even if they wear them 3 times but $5 - $10 is worth it.

    • Get a car seat capsule, it's a godsend when the baby is sleeping and you can carry him/her into the house without waking the baby.
    • Go to garage sales, people are giving away baby stuff for free or next to nothing.
    • Avoid clothes with buttons, they are a pain to put on as baby won't stay still….clothes with 2 zippers are awesome ie Bonds
    • I never bought capsule, how long you used it for? I think its a waste of money.

  • For a decent lightweight and high quality pram, look at Uppababy. We've had our Alta (now called Cruz) for 6 years and 3 kids and it's still mint. Get the bassinet if budget allows.

  • Think about yourself and not just your baby. Babies are messy and prone to projectile vomiting everywhere. I invested in a dozen or so plain t-shirts that I don't care if they get ruined. UNIQLO has a deal on plain tshirts right now.

    Other than that, make your life as easy as possible. Purchase a robot vac to keep the house tidy, get groceries/easy meals delivered - "Dinner Ladies" are great.

    • Thanks. I’m one of uniform type people so I literally own about 10 Uniqlo t shirts that I rotate through. We have a robovac as well. A few people have mentioned the food thing. I think we will meal prep as much as we can! I’ll check out dinner ladies.

  • Hello there! First thing huge congrats to you and your family in welcoming a child to your lives soon!

    I am a first time father myself and my kid just turned 1 recently. Here are my thoughts on some of these items you have:

    What I already have
    Bouncer - Given to us - We never bought any bouncer because we read it somewhere that these are not good for your kid development and legs/body muscle etc. This is up to debate but we decided to not risk it and let the kid learn how to stand/walk naturally.

    What I need
    Pram - we bought an online brand called Babybee Rover and so far we love it! The price is very reasonable as well about $650 includes the bassinet.
    Change table and mat - we got gifted this one but it is an absolute must to have! Your back will thank you.
    Clothes for the baby - like others suggest buy little as they grow up quick!
    newborn nappies - try different brands to see what will suit best for your child

    What I think I need
    First aid training - free courses online everywhere and definitely should sign up for one. My suggestion is to do it closer to your due date as the knowledge will stay fresh in your mind longer.
    Baby monitor: a $50-$60 Xiaomi camera will do
    Feeding Bottles: try different brands too but the one we use is Minbie and our boy is fine with it.
    Rocking Chair: we thought we needed this but in the end we just used our standard office chair and that works for us. You may want to invest in one for your partner though as it can be very comfortable and helps with her/yours back when feeding the baby.
    nappy bin: this is a must have, but only when the child is about 4-5 months old. Their poo in the early months does not smell that bad (if not at all), and only got worse when they start eating solid food (around 6 months +)
    Steriliser, bottle warmer, breast pump: steriliser is a must have, bottle warmer handy too, breast pump must have for mommy. Out of these 3 I would buy the first 2 second hand (try facebook market place or gumtree), and the last one brand new.
    Toys (we only buy sensory toys or creative toys for our little one, tips again don't buy too much as he/she may receive a lot from your family/friends already as baby gifts).

    Oh and yes, get as much sleep as you can now (and sex). These two things become scarcity (not impossible but less time/energy to do them).

    Enjoy your parenting journey, mine has been terrifying, but I have loved every minute of it!

  • This will be controversial.

    But we really really liked the Snoo (its like an automated rocking bassinet). It's crazy expensive. It's like USD1,200 (yes you order in Australia and have an Australian warranty but its a US price). However for us it really worked, it was a safe place to put Bub, and Bub slept hours in there. It was only useful after the first 4 weeks once Bub didn't need to feed every 2 hours or so. But Bub would regularly sleep 7-10 hours in there for us. Until about 4-5 months, when we made some other change I can't recall that upset his routine and it no longer really worked for him.

    The reason I recommend it despite the cost is. 1) it goes on sale about once a month for about 30% off 2) we were able to sell it after we finished with it for slightly more than we paid for it, but less than it was full price to a family who needed it immediately (within 3 days of posting). Sleep is so important particularly in the early days. The only downside is its not really movable between rooms, at least easily. Also doesn't seem to work for every family. So YMMV.

    Also we were using a baby carrier pretty early on found them very useful. Did have an accident with the more sling type and do recommend the more backpack looking ones like babybjorn or ergo360 as they are a little more bulky but much more secure.

    It's so interesting reading peoples recommendations here. Like that you'll use swaddles for a long time. Wasn't true for us, maybe first 3 months. Ultimately, every baby is different, and half of what we think is responsible for something working is parents is just irrelevant. Car seat to get them home, Diapers, onsies and a place to sleep are the only true essentials.

    • Thanks for the info. My partner really wants the snoo. It’s pretty expensive but I can see why it’s attractive. I have seen that you can rent them from people monthly. Any idea when they go on sale? Did you order from Amazon or from their site?

      • We got from their site. Just signed up to their news letter and it just seemed to go on sale pretty regularly every 1-2 months. We also considered renting. I think you'd get about 3-4 months use tops. But when I calculated it, it still made more sense to buy and then sell. Also look around and see if you can find one for sale. They don't tend to go up often, but if you have a few months you should be able to snag one this way.

        I also wouldn't want to order it too soon before they arrive. Like I said, you don't need em first few weeks.

  • Non-tangibles:
    * Birthing class - highly recommend Calm Birth
    * $ aside for Lactation consultation after - unfortunately these are private but highly useful.
    * Spend time reading / doing your own research into feeding and sleeping
    * $ aside to take as much time off as you can - both parents. Spend $ now, save on schooling later.

    Save $ by getting into your local hospitals Midwifery Group Program if eligible - you'll get assigned a dedicated on-call midwife from start to finish who will be there at the birth. Outcomes are significantly statistically better for both mother and child than any private ob/gyn and you'll pay exactly $0

  • +2

    These - https://www.bigw.com.au/product/big-softies-terry-towelling-... - Not to use as nappies but instead think of them as small white towels to cover your shoulder when burping, on the change table/tray, under the baby when it’s lying on the bed, soaking up the million messes. For such a simple item we found ourselves using them everywhere, over and over.

    • This. So much this.

      & if you're changing kids clothes 5-6 times a day due to milk vomit, do yourself a favour and go get them tested for milk intolerance :)

    • totally agree. We ended up with soo many of these. Use them significantly less now the kids is older. But first 6 months or so, seriously used one like every hour.

  • Yep only NEED car seat rear facing, bassinet or cot, onesies with zips like 15, Nappies and wipes, some kind of small spit up cloths and that's it really!
    It's great to share duties but especially breastfeeding only one of you can do that and likely first few weeks every 4 hours soo just be kind to eachother!!!

    • +1

      Technically we both can breastfeed as we are both women. Not sure if I will but it can be done.

  • -Mattress protector
    -Baby monitor is expensive, get any wifi cam u can watch them outside of home
    -download baby susher app & white noise app
    -baby wipes

  • @PropertyPig maybe a property

    • Hahah I have some of those for future baby already. But market is way to hot right now.

  • Don't need a cot right away
    Also don't really need a change table or baby monitor early on

    If you are concerned about sids get an owlet. Doesn't increase anxiety for us but had increased heart rate and low oxygen on two occasions

  • Agree with a lot already said.
    Would add:

    1. Bring nail clippers with you to the hospital. Babies are born with long nails. We use nail snail - makes it very easy to trim nails.

    2. Agree with using barrier cream to prevent nappy rash with every nappy change. You don’t want a red sore bottom. I found sudocrem didn’t cut it and had to use desitin. You can see how you go with sudocrem but know that desitin is an option.

    3. Bottles/pump/steriliser etc really depends on how you plan to feed and whether it goes according to plan. For me I wanted to breastfeed but had to top up with expressed breast milk and formula at the start - it was handy to already have a hospital grade pump, bottles and steriliser at home. I guess it’s also ok to buy it while you’re still at the hospital as they will supply all this when you are there. Great hack - you can actually feed bub milk at room temp (or even cold), no need to heat. Makes it easy in the future when on the go you don’t have to worry about heating milk if they are already used to cool milk.

    4. Would add a play gym - babies can spend ages under one and it is good for play and developing motor skills as they get older.

    5. Would highly recommend a first aid course for you both as well as anyone taking care of your baby. I booked for me and hubby and all 4 grandparents and auntie. I’m a doctor for adults and don’t routinely look after babies and children. Found it very useful especially when baby had episodes of turning blue after choking when feeding. Didn’t have to do CPR but good to have the skills if required and panic less.

    6. Baby hairbrush

    7. Agree try to buy all clothes and swaddles secondhand. They grow out of them too quickly. Agree with the Terry towels from Kmart - use them all the time to catch let down from other boob, possets etc

    8. Love this top from cotton on to wear at home for easy access with breastfeeding - I have 2.
      https://cottonon.com/AU/sleep-recovery-maternity-t-shirt/666...

    9. Consider buying something that will allow skin to skin contact as much as possible in the early days especially if planning to breastfeed.

    10. If breastfeeding must have lansinoh nipple cream handy, and consider hydrogel breast discs and multi mam compresses ready to go. Establishing breastfeeding can be hard on the nipples.

    11. Nursing bra and breast pads (don’t buy nursing bra too early as breast size will change towards later pregnancy)

    That’s all I can think of now. Best of luck!

  • Clothes: Bonds wondersuit

    Cream: Sudocreme

    Digital thermometer: infrared in the ear

    Breast feeding: for best chance of success I would not have formula in the house as a backup… too tempting. These things are great, though you can get generic brand for cheaper https://www.amazon.com/Haakaa-Silicone-Breastfeeding-Manual-...

    Play mat or rug: baby will be on the floor most of the time so get something soft and warm that can be machine washed.

  • +1

    Another bedroom, there is no point both parents not getting enough sleep.
    Take turns looking after the baby on different nights.

    And sudocreme and baby wipes.

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