12 Things You DEFINITELY Need For Baby's First Year

This post is sponsored by buybuy BABY. All opinions are my own. 

Having a baby is a wonderful, beautiful experience. But in real life, preparing for said experience isn't the easiest. There's the months of morning sickness, aches, sleepless nights and some of the strangest symptoms you've ever imagined. To top off all of that, you have to figure out what your baby actually needs ahead of time and put it all on the registry for friends and family. Yeah, it's overwhelming. 

But that's why I'm teaming up with buybuy BABY today to talk about WHAT YOU REALLY NEED on your registry and how to maneuver yourself past a possibly overwhelming registry experience. 

First off, buybuy BABY is a great place to tackle your registry. They have dedicated registry desks and employees to help you maneuver your way through what you need and don't need. They also have plenty of online resources for guides/advice, baby events (to get to know products), registry checklists AND they accept competitor's coupons. Obviously everyone is different and has different needs. buybuy BABY also has adoption checklists for families that are adopting a child. Indiana was our 3rd baby and we live in a tiny space so we kept things super minimalist when shopping for this guy. You might remember David's Dad's Guide To Baby Essentials HERE. 

So, as we round out Indiana's 1st year I thought it would be helpful to share what you need and probably don't need for baby's first year. Because, come on, you have enough to worry about.

Sure, you know baby needs diapers, wipes and clothing as well as a boob or bottle. But what else?

Somewhere For Baby To Sleep
Once you bring baby home you're going to need somewhere to put him or her down to sleep. Trust me on this one, sleep is the key to your sanity in those first few months. That first month you're going to be a walking zombie with what feels like a million nightly feedings. After that, it's up in the air and varies from baby to baby. Indiana started sleeping through the night at 6 weeks and promptly stopped at 4 months with teething. Now it's touch and go. So having a reliable place for baby to sleep is key. We went with an updated classic from Jenny Lind. My brother and I both had a Jenny Lind crib, so this time while searching for cribs for Indy we fell in love with this navy version of the classic crib style. Perk: It's on wheels and convertible.

What you you need in the crib: A mattress and fitted sheets. 

Skip the extra decor, bumpers and loose blankets. You can't use them the first year for safety reasons so skip them. I will say we just got a teething rail guard to keep Indiana from chewing off the crib paint. All three of our boy's have been crib chewers so once you notice baby can pull himself up and start to gnaw, you might want to invest in a guard to keep building materials out of baby's teeth and your crib looking pristine. 

Shop The Mattress: Newton Baby® Wovenaire® Crib Mattress, $299.99
Shop The Rail Guard: Levtex Baby Cody Long Rail Guard, $29.99

A Good Stroller and Carseat
Chances are you're going to need to get of the house every now and then, so you're going to have to get your self some transportation gear. I SWEAR by the DOONA. If you live in a small space, a big city or travel on the regular - the Doona is for you. We got ours when Indiana was 4 months old and hopping a flight to Louisiana. We have never looked back. It's a complete travel system in one unit. One piece! A full featured car seat with integrated stroller for quick and easy mobility. With the pull of a lever the wheels pop out from under the carseat base or are easily folded back in when you need to pop into an Uber or back into the car (it comes with a LATCH base and vehicle seat protector). It's ridiculously easy to maneuver through the airport and city sidewalks, I honestly don't know what I'm going to do once Indiana reaches the 35lb. weight limit...

It's compact and 16 lbs. making it  a lot easier to carry it up and down the subway stairs. 

Baby Containment
Of course, you want to work on Baby's motor skills and the best place to start is a baby gym. I love our Skip Hop Vibrant Village Smart Lights Activity Gym. Indy at 11 months still loves the colors, toys and sounds. It's great from birth-to at least toddler. Perk: It's easy to store (tip: keep the bag/case). 

As soon as that little one becomes a mover you're going to need to make sure EVERYTHING is up to snuff with baby safety. Make sure you have your outlet covers, door stops and other baby safety essentials ready to go. For containing the little guy in a room we thought it would be much easier to do a play yard. It has been a game changer. This North States Superyard Colorplay Playard is a great option for under $100. The panels move to create different shapes for the yard, it's sturdy and easy to use. It keeps Indiana contained and when we're done we fold it up and store it out of the way. 

Shop The Playard: North States Superyard Colorplay Playard , $89.99

Baby Dining
Ok, so the first 5-6 months baby is going to be strictly boob or bottle. I personally love the Boppy® for nursing, propping baby and working on tummy time. It's multi-use and worth the $30. Obviously there are a ton of different options, but I'm a Boppy gal. It's small and fits right into a basket when we're done using it. Indy currently uses it as a lounger. I know a lot of people swear by the dock-a-tot but it just wasn't for us. It took up a lot of space and Indy just wasn't a fan.

As we move to solids, you need to move to a high chair. For us, we needed something that was storable but also functional (with a little bit of style). I instantly fell for this Oribel Cocoon™ High Chair It grows with baby so we can use it for a while, has different seating heights and reclines so when you have one of those moments where baby falls asleep during lunchtime you can recline him back and let him sleep. It's also a great tool for introducing baby food. It's super easy to clean, has a magnetic tray, and comes it pretty colors. Yes, we chose pink. Only because it matched the backsplash so flawlessly. It folds up mostly flat so it's easy to store. 

Shop The Boppy: Boppy® Nursing Pillow, $29.99
Shop The High Chair: Oribel Cocoon™ High Chair, $199.99

The Nose Frida
Yeah, it's gross but it moves mountains (mountains of snot and crusty boogers). The first two boys definitely never experienced congestion but Indiana from day one was congested. He even had a blocked tear duct. So, this has made a huge difference in our life. I don't care what anyone says, it's an essential. 

Babywearing is a must. It's great for bonding and honestly makes getting around so much easier. If I'm by myself running errands around the city or heading to school pickup I'm probably sporting my Ergobaby™ Omni carrier or BABYBJORN® One Baby carrier. They're both great - It's just a matter of personal preference. I like the Babybjorn for the ease of opening the front to insert or remove baby as opposed to have to unclip the shoulders to insert or remove with the Ergo. Both are super comfortable for extended amounts of time. 

As you can see Indiana's noteworthy outfit is perfect with the Bjorn prints. Ha! 

What's your list of essentials for the first year?

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