We are in that phase of life where many friends have recently had a baby, or are expecting a baby. Preparing for the second baby is in many ways easier, because you have the essential baby gear and feel like you
kind of know to expect. However that second baby can feel like exponentially more work since you have a toddler to chase around (definitely not a linear relationship). I thought I’d share some items we found to be the most helpful during the transition from one child to two.
1. Nursery camera – we use this in lieu of a video baby monitor. We have a baby monitor we use for sound and temperature, then we use this Foscam to see what they are up to in their cribs. There’s an app you download onto your smartphone and can access from anywhere. Of course, we use it a lot at home, but it’s also nice to be able to see if they are napping while we are at work.
2. Baby Carrier – two words: hands free. Grocery shopping, family walks, playing at the park, getting through the airport, etc. I like the Boba 4G because it is super comfy, comes with an infant insert and sunshade, has handy pockets, and even has a little strap that snaps to secure your diaper ba
3. Backpack diaper bag – because you will need both arms for wrangling infant car seats, holding toddler’s hand, etc. Bonus points for one that’s not ugly. I used to clip my diaper bag onto the cart/stroller, but found with a sit and stand stroller (see #6 below) that the diaper bag would hit Noah in the face if I clipped it on the handlebar. So having a bag that could convert to a backpack became a must. I love this Petunia Pickle Bottom bag more than words can say. It doesn’t show dirt, has a pretty quilted texture, and holds a ton of stuff. The backpack straps slip inside a pocket when not in use so it just looks like a cute tote bag. It stands up by itself when you set it down. I could go on and on.
4. Baby swing – Because you won’t have the time or energy to carry baby #2 around all hours of the day. A swing will free up your arms (see a theme here?). We would swaddle Harper and put her in the swing with a pacifier when she would get fussy. It usually helped her fall asleep, and we would then turn it off to save batteries and also give her more restful sleep. Lifesaver.
5. Sit ‘n Stand stroller – this Joovy stroller is the lightest double stroller on the market. It has a Universal car seat adapter so you can plop the infant car seat right in it. Your older child will love being able to sit, stand, and hop on and off when they want. The back bench also converts to a seat if you just want a tandem double stroller. When the baby gets older you can snap on the snack tray in place of the car seat adapter. The huge canopy and parent console are also convenient. Not to mention it’s also a total bargain for a double stroller.
6. White noise machine – I could quote Happiest Baby on the Block and talk about the benefits of white noise to recreate the womb for a newborn, but the reality is you need to mask noise while baby sleeps. This isn’t always easy when you have a toddler running wild through the house. The Dohme white sound machine is nice because instead of playing a recording on a loop, it just sounds like a fan. You can adjust it to be louder or softer.
Honorable mentions: We have used this sleep book as a guide with both kids, who now both nap well and sleep soundly at night (*knock on wood*). I also got good use out of my nursing cover since we were out and about a lot more with the second baby. And I know the Boppy pillow makes it onto every baby gear list out there, but for good reason. What can’t you use that thing for?
I hope this list can be of some use to mamas out there expecting their second baby. And for mamas of more than one I’d love to hear: what items you found most helpful?