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#1 of 10 Old 11-07-2008, 12:31 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I first want to say that I can't believe that there are 6 due date clubs after us already! And it's only 2 weeks to Thanksgiving, and then the "Christmas/New Year's Rush", and then only 6 weeks until we have a baby here! Wow. I have so much to do.

I'm so excited! I get to shop for tiny baby things!

I have been holding out because I have SO many clothes from dd and ds, it seemed silly to buy any more. But...I have sorted every last article, and have concluded that while we have plenty of sleepers if it's a boy (that ds never wore because he's feet were too long), and plenty of gowns (that ds hated...the confinement made him squirm and scream...even as a newborn), we only have 4 MAYBE outfits. So, if it's a boy and I'm to dress him in anything but a sleeper...I have to go shopping. If it's a girl, we're a little lighter on the pajamas, though still have plenty, but still only have a handful of outfits for cooler weather, and most of those are too big for a newborn. Dd and Ds pretty much wore onesies because it was so hot. I have a picture of dd at about 7 days old with her tiny bare arms hanging out of this sleeveless outfit...not going to work with this baby!

I'm so happy...I like to have a few special things for each baby, and it'll be fun to look around!

"If you keep doing the same things you've always done, you'll keep getting the same results you've always gotten."

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#2 of 10 Old 11-07-2008, 01:40 AM
 
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Oh gosh, have a great time! I'm a little envious. Things are tight for us right now, but that need to get SOMETHING is getting stronger for sure. I'm holding out as much as possible until I can go through all of Guinevere's baby things and get it all really well organized.

That usually works for me in terms of satisfying the need to buy urge -- just organizing what I've already got, and especially in this case, since the grandmothers went absolutely nutters buying stuff for Winnie when she was little, so we have things that were never even worn.

Still. I admit it is getting harder to walk right past the Newborn aisle....

Have a wonderful time and take pictures! I love seeing other mamas' new tiny baby things.

SAHM to Guinevere (04/05/06) and Eowyn (02/13/09)
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#3 of 10 Old 11-07-2008, 12:53 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks! Have fun sorting! I really enjoyed that. Last night, dh said, "how much longer are we going to talk about clothes...I'm falling asleep." I knew he was just being honest...but later I was happy to tease him that apparently the carborator (how DO you spell that?) book he was reading was just as boring as my clothes conversation...he slept in the chair for 2 hours while I sorted. (dh works really long hours, and starts his day early, so he never can stay awake in the evenings...)

Hey! I just noticed our due dates are the same! I'll race ya'.

"If you keep doing the same things you've always done, you'll keep getting the same results you've always gotten."

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#4 of 10 Old 11-07-2008, 04:15 PM
 
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I was relieved to see this thread. As a first time mom who is trying to figure out what I need, I have some questions regarding what the baby actually wears in those first few weeks. I'll apologize in advance for how detailed these questions are. Answer what you can/want but please help!

Home from hospital: Does the baby wear a onesy? Or more? Or does a blanket/receiving blanket keep her warm? Scull hat? Socks?

Sleeping: I'm confused about whether the baby will sleep in one of those sacks with arms? Or, a gown? Or, a onesy? I also saw a bunch of wrap-up type apparel where you swaddle them in it, like a doll. Am I suppose to try and keep a baby's armed pinned down when it is sleeping?

I realize it's a lot of hit and miss but some basic input about what I should have on hand would really clear up my confusion.

Oh -- and I really appreciate tips like Nighten's (from way back) about "side-snap shirts because of the umbilical cord stump."

I don't want to buy everything "just in case" but I'm nervous that I may end up doing just that!
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#5 of 10 Old 11-07-2008, 11:15 PM
 
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Oh good heavens this is long. I have so much laundry I'm avoiding right now.

Sorry.

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Originally Posted by heinz28 View Post

Home from hospital: Does the baby wear a onesy? Or more? Or does a blanket/receiving blanket keep her warm? Scull hat? Socks?
Well, I'm more about function than form, and comfort is key, so firstly I'd say whatever it is, needs to be warm. That means diaper (obviously), socks, something over hands (those long gowns typically have fold out cuffs that go over tiny hands), hat, main warm outfit (how warm depends on your locale) and (presumably) thick blanket to tuck around baby OVER the carseat straps. No bulky stuff under carseat straps. That's unsafe. It's okay to put a blanket over the whole seat if it's an infant bucket for the quick run to the car if it's snowing or windy. Warm up car ahead of time. Otherwise, wrap baby in warm blanket, then get in car with him/her and put in carseat, fasten straps, then tuck blanket around baby over straps.

Also whatever s/he's wearing, especially right next to the skin, needs to be comfortable -- that means no scratchy tags, anything embroidered has the fabric tape inside to protect sensitive skin, made of soft fabrics, etc. But I'd definitely go with something warm and cozy.

And it is nice if it fits. A little big is fine, but I'd bring two outfits that can work in two sizes, if they're size-specific (like an actual outfit of pants and top) versus a gown type thing, if that makes sense. I'd brought gowns for Guinevere but also had a specific going home outfit. It was way too big. I put her in it anyway because I'm a doofus. This time I'm just taking gowns, and extra layers for warmth if need be (leggings and long sleeved side snap tshirt for underneath, warmer blankets, etc.).

Baby will likely sleep in the car on the way home, and still be drowsy for a while after that, so personally I'm going with a sleeper type outfit for this baby. I don't care about the outfit being something super fancy for the going home pictures. But that's just me.

Quote:
Sleeping: I'm confused about whether the baby will sleep in one of those sacks with arms? Or, a gown? Or, a onesy? I also saw a bunch of wrap-up type apparel where you swaddle them in it, like a doll. Am I suppose to try and keep a baby's armed pinned down when it is sleeping?
Most newborns sleep better when swaddled. They should show you at the hospital how to swaddle the baby, but if I were you, I'd practice a bit ahead of time. I like the way Dr. Karp does it (from Happiest Baby on the Block). There are different ways but that one was easy for me to remember.

A newborn needs to be in one layer more than you're in. They cannot regulate their body temp until close to 12 months actually. (Side note: A cold baby should be warmed skin to skin before layers are added -- otherwise you're trapping cold in.) So it's key to keep baby warm, and the truly best way to do that is to have him next to you. But as a general rule, adding one layer is a good approach.

A receiving blanket counts as that layer (though use your judgment here -- some of those blankets are thick, some very thin -- obviously for wintertime babes, the super thin blankets may not work as well). To help prevent SIDS, be sure the room temp is around 68 degrees (too warm = not good). You don't want a baby overheated. If it's very cool (you can tell by feeling her cheeks and neck) then put some of those mittens that help prevent scratches on her hands, and a little baby cap on her head. Most body heat escapes through your head anyway, so a hat can help lots there. When in doubt, put baby on your chest and wrap something around you both. You don't have to undress the baby to do that, but it's a good way to keep her warm.

The sleep sacks are used instead of a receiving blanket for swaddling as I understand it. I've never used a sleep sack though. Typically do not use any other blankets with a sleepsack -- it is the swaddling receiving blanket and a cover blanket all in one. I might try one with this baby if she resists swaddling after a short while but not as a brand new newborn.

Otherwise I'll likely skip it again. Some mamas swear by them. Some say they're useless. It just depends. It wouldn't hurt to have one on hand, if you can afford it. Try it out and see how your babe responds. But for a newborn I'd use one that encloses arms too. For an older infant, the sacks that have the overall type tops may work better.

Most newborns need their arms and legs wrapped snug in the swaddle. It reminds them of the womb. Seems restrictive but for most newborns, it is very calming and helpful.

When their arms are free, and especially when they're on their backs, they feel a falling sensation and it startles them (you'll see them throw their arms out to the side in the Startle or Moro Reflex). Anytime they hear a noise or something, they can flinch their arms, which can wake them. They're used to a very snug environment where everything is surrounded all the time. So flailing arms can make it hard for them to sleep.

And on their back is considered safer for sleeping in terms of SIDS prevention. So what we did was especially for naps (since we coslept at night) was put her in a long gown with elastic at the bottom for easy diaper change, and socks. Then wrapped her in a receiving blanket or swaddled her.

For naps in the bassinet, I made a positioner by taking a thick towel, folding it in half, then rolling the sides under to form two small bolsters on either side.

I laid a receiving blanket over it, and tucked it in under the sides of the towel, and laid her on top of that.

Here's a picture. She wasn't swaddled in that picture, but it was warmer by then. She slept better slightly on her side but I wasn't comfortable swaddling her and her on her side. She was only about two weeks old there. I'd have swaddled her more consistently if she'd not napped well early on, and if it had been cooler.

This time it will be different because it will be much colder (Winnie was born in April).

I didn't swaddle her at night all the time when we coslept as I recall. I had her dressed in one layer more than me, with her own blanket and I had mine, and she slept in the crook of my arm. Body heat keeps baby warm and sometimes you don't need that extra blanket even. Had we not coslept, I definitely would have swaddled her at night.


Quote:
I realize it's a lot of hit and miss but some basic input about what I should have on hand would really clear up my confusion.

It's different for everyone and every baby. Some babies need swaddling often and for a long while. Some hate it. Some are fine for the first few weeks. It just depends honestly. But definitely try it -- it can really help. I highly recommend the Happiest Baby book or DVD (DVD is easier) just for ideas in general. Don't have to use all the tips precisely as is -- you can adjust as needed for your own child. For instance, Guinevere did not respond positively to the louder shushing at all. But soft shushing worked really well.

The other tips though, on gentle movements and how to hold baby, and especially how to swaddle, were very helpful for us early on. Dr. Sears' Baby Book is also very good.

It's also good to have some nursing books or info on hand ahead of time. I highly recommend reading at least one BFing book before hand so you know what to expect. The LLL one is probably the best, but you can ask in the BFing forum for recommendations. I had The Nursing Mother and it was fine. And if there's a lactation consultant on staff at your hospital, definitely see her, even if you don't think you need to.

Good luck! Hopefully others here will help with more tips. But that's how it worked for us, first time around. Who knows what will happen this time.

SAHM to Guinevere (04/05/06) and Eowyn (02/13/09)
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#6 of 10 Old 11-08-2008, 01:09 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Great post nighten. Lots of good tips there!

Here's my 2 cents. But it's hard to put it all together in my mind...I wish we could go out to shop and have doughnuts : and just talk about it...ah, but, I'll try...

My misc jumbled thoughts:

This one's a homebirth, but the last two were in the hospital. I didn't with dd right away, but ds never wore hospital clothes. I put him right into the little outfit I'd brought for him. And I put my clothes on after I'd showered, too. I felt more like me, and I felt like he belonged to me, instead of the hospital, if that makes sense. Whatever you take to put them in that you care about, be sure to put onesie on underneath...the cord will goo up (and may stain) their sweet clothes. I also like to have a few tiny, tiny things that will FIT in the first week or so. Mine tend to grow fast (ds gained nearly 4 pounds his first month), so they don't stay in them long, but it was really nice to put him in things that weren't floppy. I also don't do shirts and pants for the tiny ones. Really, not until they are sitting up/crawling. They just look so uncomfortable to me. The pants ride up, and the shirts are always getting pulled up and bunched so their tiny bellies are hanging out, or they are lying on a lump. I also don't do overalls...the bib part in the front always rides up and gets stuck on or in their mouths. So, I like one piece outfits and sleepers. I loved gowns with dd, but ds hated swaddling and gowns right off. Tight elastic on the bottom of the gowns is a pain, though, especially when you are trying to change a blow out diaper at 2am. I don't leave mine in sleepers/gowns all day. I like to see them dressed like the rest of us, and I think it helps them to figure out night and day. I recommend sleepers without feet. Just buy socks. If their feet are too long for the sleepers, you just have to buy new ones. Socks are cheaper and easier to replace. I, personally, don't like the don't scratch mittens. I never use them. Babies love to mouth their hands, and many of them do it all the time before they are born. I like to let them have easy access to their fingers. As far as leaving the hospital, I'd say a sweet one piece outfit of the smallest size is great. Take a few blankets to throw over the baby. I think they usually make you put them in the carseat to go out to the car. As soon as we got down the hallway, I took ds out and carried him. But, with dd, they wheeled her to the door in her bassinet, so I couldn't carry her. For going outside when it's cold, I prefer to put my babies in my carrier (a sling or moby, moby works better for this) chest to chest with me. Then I have a cape-like coat for them with just one or two buttons at the top. I put the hood on their head, and button that top button to keep their cape on them snug. Their bellies are nice and warm on me. Then I put MY coat on and snug it up around both of us. I bought one a bit bigger (i have long arms anyway) so I can even zip it when the babies are really tiny. You don't have to put them in a carrier first, but it helps to be able to carry stuff, or help the other kids out. Anyway, then I go get in the warmed up car and sit by the carseat. I take the baby out and put them in the carseat and buckle up. If it's really cold, I may put a blanket over their legs, but not usually. My babies don't wear coats much at all...excepting the cape thing. The sleep sacks are a no go for me. My babies would have both just melted in those. My babies also cosleep and I wear them for naps when they are tiny, or just wrap them snuggly in a blanket. At night sometimes they are too hot even in a sleeper. That's one of the reasons I like the gowns. They tend to be a bit lighter weight, and I could pull them up to let the baby get some air to cool down. Oh, a random thought, when you take your baby outside and it's cold and breezy, do make sure you cover the baby's face (but leave it plenty of room for breathing! The wind just takes their breath away so fast.

Okay, well, thanks for bearing with me. That was a lot of randomness. I'll try to get back on tomorrow and type up the list of things I feel I MUST have. Most other things I've given away. It's pretty simple what I really need.

As you can probably see, everyone kinda has their own "system", so I'd buy light until you know what you REALLY want. It's all just theory until you've tried out a few things AND met your baby.

"If you keep doing the same things you've always done, you'll keep getting the same results you've always gotten."

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#7 of 10 Old 11-10-2008, 08:09 PM
 
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Thanks. This is helpful for first time mommies. I live in Alaska. I do NOT want my baby to "live" in the carseat, but I don't want to put my sweet baby in an icy-cold seat either and may want to take the carseat inside often. I know moms who keep the Moby wrap all ready for the baby to slip into before going into a store or church. Probably by the time we figure all of this out, it will be warm enough to not worry about it! Anyway, thanks. I'm eating up these posts.

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#8 of 10 Old 11-11-2008, 04:47 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Okay...sorry this wasn't "tomorrow"...

Wow! This is harder than I thought! I keep typing and deleting, trying to be concise and clear!

For baby:
(per day)
2 outfits
2 gowns or sleepers
1 hat and pair of socks
1 receiving blanket (I made a bunch 35" square by getting 1 yard each of 2 coordinating flannel fabrics, cut it to 36" square, and sewing it, right sides together, almost all the way around. I flipped it right side out through the hole I'd left, and then ironed it flat, ironing the place I hadn't sewed towards the inside, as if it had already been sewn. Then I stitched around the edges, being sure to sew over the part that hadn't yet been sewn to keep it from coming out. They look really cute, and since they are a bit bigger and thicker than standard receiving blankets, they work great for cover-ups while nursing, and the baby doesn't grow out of them so fast! They only take maybe a half hour, each, to make.)
enough diapers to be able to change the baby once an hour (24) (although we may need more or less)
2 or 3 "burp" cloths (I always use the printed...worthless for cloth diapering...gerber cloth prefold diapers. I think they are cute, and they are thicker and absorb SO much better than the standard "burp" cloths. I have about 14 in the boy version, and 14 in the girl version. I use them multiple times daily until the baby is nearly a year old!)

coat or cape
sling or wrap or both
4 outfits for Sundays (I like to rotate them about once a month)
cute shoes, or booties (for Sunday's...I think those little soft booties are SO sweet!)


Miscellaneous gear:
boppy (I love to lay the baby on it, nestled in the hole, beside me, or for a nap near me, if I have to put it down for a minute. They look so cozy and comfortable. DON'T leave your baby alone like that, though. I'm an obsessive compulsive baby holder and it's rare mine isn't in arms or within reach. I don't use a boppy for nursing, by the way. I just don't need it and am much more comfortable just holding the baby.)
bouncy seat (I never turn on the music or the vibration, but it's nice to have somewhere safe to put the baby for a second while I tend to an older child or take a shower. I used a floor level swing for dd and ds when I was in the shower, but I also didn't usually have it swinging, and I didn't use it other than for a few minutes here or there when I just HAD to put them down. This time, I'm going to plan a specific seat or place to put the baby down safely in each room. Fetching and hauling the floor swing all over the house is such a pain!)
pack-n-play (not even sorta a neccessity, but I like to use the bassinet attachment as a changing table. I lay the baby in it across the shorter direction and use the other half for a small pile of diapers, wipes, clothes, etc. I've spent a lot of time with both babies leaning over the edge talking and playing with them. When I take the extra stuff out, it's also a nice, safe, close to me place to wiggle where they won't get squished by dogs or kids.)

2 or 3 towels and washcloths (I tend to use several washcloths for each bath in the beginning, and sometimes 2 towels. I use different washcloths for different parts of their bodies (hair, face, bottom, body), and sometimes I use really wet ones for rinsing. Since they are mostly wrapped in a towel that tends to get wet during the bath, I have a fresh dry one for after I'm done. When they are a bit bigger and go in the bath with me, we just need 2 washcloths (arguably only 1), and one towel for them.)
favorite baby safe soap/shampoo
fingernail clippers (actually, they peel off quite nicely on their own when they need to for the the first several months. I've only had the need to trim my babies' a few times when they were young.)
bulb syringe (haven't ever needed it, but I keep one for the just-in-cases. just in case of what, I guess I'm not sure, but, we have one.)
thermometer (did you know that under the arm for a tiny baby is as good as in the rectum...and safer, too? around six months, start adding a degree if you do it under the arm. Before that, the difference is negligible.)
comb or brush, if yours has hair...mine never do

It's helpful to me to have a very large stash of nursing pads, and a couple of spare changes of clothes for me. The leaking can get ridiculous, and soak everyone. I usually shove the "burp" cloth between the baby and I when I'm nursing, so anything that leaks from me, or dribbles from the baby's mouth goes on that instead of on our clothes. I've also found it's great to have something to stop the flow when the baby unexpectedly stops nursing.

Other than that...I can't think of anything else I use. As far as keeping the baby warm enough during the winter, I'll just dress the baby like us, and probably keep it in the sling or wrap most of the time. I'll probably have a blanket or two around to throw over or wrap around it when someone else is holding it, or I put it down for a minute.

Well, I have several books I keep around to reference quickly. I have 1 very mainstream, 2 midstream, and 4 alternative books, plus the handy dandy internet. I like to be able to bounce what the "oh no go to the doctor right away!" books say versus the "the doctor will kill you with his foolishness and uneccessary procedures if you go" books.

Oh, and a nightlight. Not being able to see the baby in the middle of the night is a pain, and having to blind everyone flipping on the light to change a diaper is really annoying!

I usually put a days worth of diapers and wipes and nursing pads in a basket I keep by my bed. I keep a full glass of water beside the bed, and a small basket of snacks there, too. Those books live by the bed also. A trash can and a place to put used diapers (if you're using cloth) nearby is nice, too. (they really don't smell, and you can wash them/throw them away in a day or two with no problems). All that so I don't have to actually get up in the middle of the night. I just sit up, deal with whatever needs dealt with, and lay back down and nurse the baby.

And a rocking chair. I spend a lot of time in my rocking chair.

Okay, I think that's it, and, it's not very orderly and clear...sorry.

"If you keep doing the same things you've always done, you'll keep getting the same results you've always gotten."

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#9 of 10 Old 11-11-2008, 05:35 PM
 
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Thanks for the great posts! My new car just arrived on the barge so I'm going through all the baby things we were given while visiting family. I'm washing and folding diapers right now trying to decide what else I need to order in that department. Also washing all the little clothes I received as gifts. It is so much fun! I'm trying to sort as I wash to get a true assessment of what I have rather then just stash everything and realize I missed something obvious. i appreciate the posts from the experienced Mama's!

Josie, where in AK do you live?...I'm in Kodiak.

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#10 of 10 Old 11-11-2008, 08:12 PM
 
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Thank you so much, ladies! I can't say that enough. All your lists and tips are going to good use, trust me.

And, it's so helpful to hear it from the perspective of what will be useful right away.
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