Growing a family and having a baby means conception, 9 months of pregnancy, labour and birth. This is nature, and the easiest thing is to let nature work its miracles. Then the baby enters into the world and in your arms, and a million questions, you never knew existed pops into your mind…
If you are a first-time mum, like me, you have Googled every single thing there is to Google; which stroller to buy, pacifier or not pacifier, how much clothes to have ready – and in which sizes and so on. It is a jungle. The advice that I found most valuable, were from one mummy to the next (a special thanks to my friend Lise and my mum!). So here are some things that I really value, being a mummy of a 1-month-old rascal.
Obviously, babies and parents are different, but I still think it is worth a share.
This one is easy – you cannot get enough of these. I use them all the time, especially for breastfeeding and nappy changing.
I bought these from Muslinz, which feels nice and soft on the skin. I bought some in white and some with print on, using the printed ones for feeding and the white ones for nappy changing.
Breastfeeding is a beautiful thing. No doubt. But it does take some time to really get a hang of it (at least for me), which has meant sore nipples, milk in many places and understanding how to be comfy while feeding.
First of all – keep things in reaching distance (remote control, water, phone), as the feeding session might take a while.
There are different opinions on whether to use any cream on sore nipples or not, but for me it has been really good. I use a nipple cream from Lansinoh, which is a really sticky cream, that creates a kind of protective layer on your nipple. In addition to this, I use the Mommy & Me balm from the Danish brand Rudolph Care, which has a soothing effect (and can be used for everything from nipples and dry skin to nappy rash – a little miracle worker!).
If you’re planning to breastfeed, you might as well have a small stock of breast pads ready. I am using the disposable breast pads from Lansinoh, which I am really happy with. I recently bought washable/reusable breast pads from Mama Designs, to save some money, as well as they feel very soft on my skin.
Nursing pillow. This is a great invention – especially during night time, when the light is dimmed and it can be hard to find a comfortable position while sitting in bed.
You might also quickly realise that nursing bras are a great invention. I have two that I use/wash constantly, but might be stocking up a bit more, as I am planning on breastfeeding for a long time. H&M has worked for me so far, and they have some really pretty ones like this one. Another brand that I recently discovered, and would like to give a go, is the Swedish brand Boob Design.
A part from that I like to ‘free the nipple’ during night time, to give them a bit of fresh air…
Pelvic floor exercises
I had barely given birth, before the midwife started reminding me to do my pelvic floor exercises. I know she is right, but I am just the type who forgets that I have to do them…
Luckily there are apps for that. I am using Squeezy, which is kind enough to remind me to do them, until I actually do them.
Sleepings little helpers
A good night’s sleep is essential for everyone – even those small rascals that sleep constantly. Therefore, we quickly found out that a night lamp is a really good idea. I am using this one, which gives a soft night light, which turns of by itself (I like to keep the light on until I know Alexander is sleeping tight), as well as it has some sound features, helping to calm a baby.
To sleep in we use the Gulliver cot from Ikea. We have placed the cot right next to me, and removed one site, which allows me to grab Alexander from the bed, as well as calming him down with one hand, while laying on my pillow. For us it works great, as it is not only convenient but also cost-efficient, as he will be using this bed for many years.
As the bed is quite big, we bought a baby nest from Sleepyhead, using it as a crib reducer. He sleeps so happily in his Sleepyhead, and has done it from the day we came home from the hospital. During day time we move it to the couch, to keep him close to us. It is possible to buy a compatible toy arch, making it not only a resting place, but also a play space. Apart from that it is easy to clean, making accidents of various kinds less unfortunate.
Finally, my crazy-mum-addition to the list. My husband calls it a watch tower. It is basically a couple of pillows on top of each other, which allows me to keep an eye on the little rascal while ‘sleeping’. This is not a good solution for a happy and healthy neck, but for me it is very reassuring. Note – I have gone from 3 pillows to 2 at the moment.
A washing machine
How anyone has ever had babies without one of these is a mystery to me. Alexader grows so fast (!!), that what he was wearing last week is now too small, which makes it more convenient to buy less and wash more – according to me.
A baby carrier
When Alexander is awake, he loves being close to me and Giovanni, and I quickly found out that a very good way of getting stuff done, while keeping Alexander close is by using a baby carrier. We have the one from Baby Björn, which works really well. I am also considering trying out the sling from Mezaya, as it looks very comfy for a small baby, and has great reviews.
A baby record book
I cannot count how many times I have read through the record book my mum made for me. Even though I don’t remember much (or anything) from being a baby and a toddler, it is very special reading about my eating habits, my temper, funny things I said and did and so on.
I have two books for Alexander – one is a simple notebook where I write about what has happened in Alexander’s life now and then, such as weight increases, feeding, his temper and other things.
The other one is a very special book, called ‘Birthday Letters to my baby’. Every year until Alexander turns 18 years old, both Giovanni and I will write him a letter on his birthday, and put in some pictures from the past year of his life. As soon as I discovered this book, I had to have it. The idea is so beautiful, and will be a unique gift when he grows up – and the book itself looks great on the bookshelf.
Ever since I was a very little girl I have loved writing in my journal, and even more loved reading my thoughts from previous times. Time is precious and fleeting, and this book will encourage us to treasure our memories.
The book is by Emily Rollings and can be found here.
Last but not least – a thousand pieces of good advice will come your way when becoming a mum. It can be very overwhelming, and in the end, you know what feels most right for you and your baby. At least that has been the case for me.
I could continue this post, and I am sure that there are a million more things to recommend, but having been a mum for a month now, these are the things that have been good to have for us.
Feel free to share any advice below or on my Instagram.