If you’re anything like me, a few months before your first child arrived, all the baby gear did too. It looked like Babies R Us (may they rest in peace) had stormed into my living room the day after my shower, and I honestly used most of the stuff I was given. When baby number two arrived, I thought I was all set on ‘stuff. ‘ I was mostly right, but there are a few indispensable items that I discovered that might make your transition from one to two kids easier.
The Items You Need
Portable Booster Seat
With my first baby, all snacks and meals were served in the kitchen, of course. We have a high chair and that was plenty in terms of seating. With baby number two, I quickly discovered that serving food strictly in the kitchen wasn’t going to mesh too well with our lifestyle. I picked up one of these little seats, and boy has it been a lifesaver. I can bring it wherever we are: reading books in the living room, playing outside, or (gulp) watching Saturday morning cartoons. I can also easily bring it to other people’s homes if they don’t have an empty high chair for my guy. Mine even has a little slot in the front to store the tray, which is super handy for transporting it.
Backpack Diaper Bag
For my first son, I had a super cute, super nice Petunia Pickle Bottom tote diaper bag. It worked great and really held up to the wear and tear of one child. With my second, I purchased a (still super cute) backpack diaper bag instead and couldn’t be happier. One kid plus one kid plus one diaper bag equals three items that you’re responsible for transporting from the parking lot to the library/grocery store/school. If you can throw one of those quickly on your back, that’s a definite help. Even though I only paid around 35 dollars for this bag, it held up to daily (and rough) use for a year, and I happily purchased a second one when the zipper on the first one broke.
A Good Baby Carrier
For baby number one, a good quality carrier was a nice-to-have item. Baby number two? Must have. Remember when your first child was going through something (teething, growth spurt, a general aversion to being out of the womb) and absolutely refused to nap anywhere but on you? Yeah, that doesn’t work so well when you’ve got bigger kids to take care of. It’s also great for keeping baby near during big kid activities or attaching them to you while running errands. There are a ton of options, so if you’re looking for some assistance, check out Bellani Maternity in Warwick, Carrier Connections run by PMB’s very own Shaylene Costa-Hurtado if you’re local, or your local Kanga Mamas group if you’re not.
Diaper Caddy (for next to your bed)
With my first son, I did everything The Right Way. When he would cry at night, I would get up out of bed, feed him in his rocking chair, change him on his changing table, and then put him back to sleep in his bassinet. Why I did this I have no idea. With my second I did everything The Easy Way. Baby wakes up, stay in bed with baby, stick the baby on the boob, plop the baby on bed and change. A diaper caddy will keep you from rummaging around for diaper cream at 1 am, which is a huge bonus for me.
The Items You Can Live Without
There are also some items that totally bit the dust once baby number two came along. Don’t judge me but I never again used my:
Shopping Cart Cover
Is there anyone who didn’t obsessively worry about germs with their first child? My level of concern dropped just a bit with baby number two. I still meant to use the darn thing, but the fact that the children and I had arrived at the grocery store in one piece was enough of a miracle. I couldn’t even remember the reusable bags, let alone a shopping cart cover. Sorry, buddy! A little germ exposure is good for you!
Excessive Amount of Baby Toys
Sure, a few rattles and crinkly toys are fun, but multiple baskets of infant toys are way unnecessary. Just hand your little one whichever one of their sibling’s toys that are 1) not a choking hazard and 2) the older sibling isn’t currently playing with and voila – baby toy!
Changing Table in the Living Room
Do you know what a changing table is? It’s a piece of furniture with a flat cushion. That’s it. Believe me when I say there are already PLENTY of items in your living room with flat cushions. Throw a pad down on one (couch, ottoman, loveseat, or rug) and change that baby. Instead of hauling your massive combo changing table/baby seat/playpen/video game console or whatever the heck it does up from the basement, go the simpler route with number two. Because of course, your living room is already taken over with your firstborn’s toys.
Did I miss anything? What did you use or not use for baby number two?